Oman Bound

In a few days, I’m heading to the country of Oman on behalf of the U.S. Embassy and the State Department as part of their public diplomacy program. I’ll be doing a few workshops for audiences ranging from tech incubators to university students with topics as broad-reaching as “From Passion To Payday” to “Using Social Media To Build Relationships.” I also have a number of consulting sessions scheduled and hope to have some time to see the country. Should be an incredible trip.

From the research I’ve done, Oman looks like an amazing country. Their history is deep and rich and the people look to be as progressive thinking as anyone else I might have had the privilege to present in front of, or consult with. As excited as I am to explore this new region of the world (for me), I’m perhaps even more excited of what might come from this trip. Somehow, I don’t see this ending when I head home on the plane.

The Internet has made it possible for the entire world to be linked in ways that seem almost science fiction just a few years past. This planet of ours is now connected in ways we couldn’t have dreamed possible when we first started our businesses.

It would be crazy not to take advantage of this new reality.

If you have a few minutes, check your web, YouTube, or Podcast stats. Is there a country, or a batch of them, that you couldn’t locate on a world map today? Maybe you want to change that.

Wondering where your future customers or partners will be coming from?

Think globally. It’s kind of how this Internet thing works.

Oman, I can't wait to meet you. See you soon!

A photo posted by Paul Colligan (@paulcolligan) on

Hard Realities About Social Profit Formulas And Online Marketing

Ready for some hard realities?

In prepping for the live Podcast Secrets presentation tonight (the topic – OffCasting – getting people off of you content and into your marketing funnel), I realized I had some killer numbers of what’s happening/working RIGHT NOW to share with my students because of my Social Profit Formula (AFF) campaigning that I wrote about earlier on this Blog and at PaulRecommends.com.

I thought I’d share them with you as well.

The metric I’m currently tracking is clicks to opt-ins (i.e., what percentage of people who click over to Don’s campaigns opt-in for more information). As the course hasn’t gone on sale yet, this is the only thing I can track at this point (if you’d like to know the final results of clicks to buys, because, yes, I’m tracking those as well, comment below accordingly).

  • Social Media Links Conversion – 7.6%. That’s right, it takes more than 100 clicks from social media to get 8 people to opt-in.
  • Website Links Conversion – 25.8%. I get 25 opt-ins for those 100 clicks at the previous blog post. That’s more than 3 times the results.
  • Email Newsletter Links Conversion – 29.3%. In my weekly “Heads Up Tuesday” email I mentioned Don’s program as a link worth clicking (there were 5 other links in the newsletter). Did almost 4% better on that random mailing than on the Web clicks.
  • Direct Email Links Conversion – 39.3%. The direct email piece on Don’s product saw nearly 40 optins per 100 clicks – around 5 times the rate of the social media clicks.

The numbers should speak for themselves but a little examination is in order. Yes, this is the only thing I’m tracking and the final results might surprise me still but plane and simple, if I want to see action, I want to send emails.

So what does this mean to Don’s Social Profit Formula and social media marketing in general? Well, I certainly hope you take 2 things from it 1) Social Media doesn’t replace anything well – the results are terrible for marketers when compared to other models and 2) what you need more than the latest version is Tweetdeck or the perfect iPad Twitter client is a model for how to use Social Media to bring people into the fold that does, in fact, work better.

Truth be told, a good amount of my list comes from social media efforts. I introduce myself in Twitter, Facebook, and the rest and when we are ready to take our relationship to the next level – I ask for an email address. It works wonders for both of us.

But regardless of what you strategy is – and who you pick to be your guru, have a strategy that works and can be backed up with real numbers. The real money is in folding Social Media into what you’re already doing.

Thoughts?

8 Years Free – Here’s What’s Next

It’s a very special day for me: 8 years ago today was the last thing I’ll ever have that will resemble a day job. The Internet has been veryverygoodtome and it’s time for me to give back.

Note: This is a work and concept in process. I’ll be editing this a LOT based on what I hear back from you. As you’ll see, we’ve got a site dedicated to the conversation, but please read nothing definitive into what I write today (other than the fact that I LOVE this concept and will be pouring a lot of time and effort into it). Also, please don’t – I DON’T WANT YOUR MONEY on this project.

Problem: The very nature of the Internet is that anyone, anyplace, anytime, anywhere can produce and publish content. I embrace (and love) this reality but it results with this simple fact: The lack of standards and content spam is preventing the growth we were hoping for.

Solution: The Internet has allowed us to publish whatever we want. Let’s use that same Internet to publish open media standards that will take us to the next level.

Paul’s Answer: I’ve started something called The Open Media Standards Foundation. Before you read another word, 2 things: A) I DON’T WANT YOUR MONEY FOR THIS and B) I HAVE NO DESIRE TO “GO AGAINST” OR “UNDO” THE WORK ANYONE ELSE HAS DONE AT THIS POINT.

It starts with what I call the Content Principles Document. It’s a simple list (and simple is the key here, help me keep this simple) of principles that content creators embrace. This will, in theory, grow an audience that can consume our content with considerably more trust than the content they currently consume online.

To be truthful, there is alot more here (and, again, I don’t want your money), but this Content Principles Document is the first step.

So, here’s what I’m asking for … can you visit the current revision of the document, give it a good read, and make a comment on how we can make it better?

I think the industry can and will be in a much better place if we do it right. Here’s to doing it right.

If this site has helped you at all, could you help this industry by making a comment?

Please comment at the OMSF site – not here.

PaulRecommends.com – Need Your Help

Over the next few weeks, you’ll be seeing a lot of changes around here. The new blog look and feel at PaulColligan.com should be a hint of what’s to come.

The next blog to relaunch is a complete redo of PaulRecommends.com (I have already launched the Twitter account, feel free to friend me there!).

The goal is probably obvious on some levels (and hardly original). It’s the place where I’m going to put all of my recommend products and services and gadget and gizmos, etc.

Do you know what got me out of the “tyranny of the day job?” The amazing realization that some (some, not all, but some is better than none) of the very same sites I’d link to anyway had these things called affiliate programs that sent a little money back my way if someone ended up buying something. Yup, link “A” went to site “A” but link “B” went to site “A” but resulted in a check now and then if things went well. If they didn’t go well, who cares, it was just a link …

Talk about win/win … I’ll never forget the day my boss gave me an “A” or “B” choice at work and because of affiliate marketing, I was able to take choice “C” and never look back.

So, I continue to affiliate market. I’ve said it time and time again, I only link to and report on the stuff I like and trust, and one’s word used to be enough … but, well, the FTC has some words to say on that. I’m going to continue doing what I’m doing, and try to be a bit more clear, and the New PaulRecommends.com is my first step.

Boy, that was a long way of saying … I need your help on the subtitle for the new blog. I’ve always like “A Personal Look At A Technical Revolution” for this blog and I want something as cool for that one … I have a few in mind …

FTC Compliance Statement: Consider Everything An Affiliate Link

I Use ‘Em, I Like ‘Em, I Make Money From ‘Em

You Asked – Here They Are – Consider Them Affiliate Links

Let’s Make This Easy – Consider Them All Affiliate Links

Go anything better? Place it in the comments section below.

Outsourcing

So I’m looking to the year in front of me (with kids in school I tend to think in terms of the school year) and I’m looking to do two simple things (in my business at least): A) spend more time doing the things that make me money and B) spend less time doing the things that don’t make me money.

Seems like an easy enough concept, right?

Some of those things in “B” need to be done regardless if they make money or not.  So, enter the wonderful world of outsourcing …

I’ve got an incredible assistant who I simply don’t give enough work to.  She’s going to be getting more and I’ll be better for it.  I might also take some basic regular repetitive tasks and source them out to an organization that specializes in that kind of thing.

This is a great idea, of course, only if I use the time to create more revenue.

So as I plot all this out, I’ll share with you my final results.  I would, however, love your thoughts on the topic and grab any secrets, ideas, etc. you have on the topic.  Do you outsource anything in your business?  If so, how is it working out for you?  What are the gotchas?  What do I need to do instantly?

I look forward to your comments …

It’s Not What You Know, It’s Who Knows You …

If you’re reading via RSS, you’ll probably have to click over to view this clip. The News Organization who provided the clip has one of those “old world” views on everything and wants to serve the content from their machines.

No problem, embedded below …

Just attempting to prove, it’s not what you know, it’s who knows you …

That and OTF video rendering.

BlogTheMedia.com – Free Preview Week

From November 5 to December 14, I’m going to be hosting/producing a major training program called BlogTheMedia.com. Some highlights include:

  • We’re going to steal a concept from the cable companies and offer the first week entirely for free. If you like what we offer, then you can purchase the entire package after that.
  • Included in that first week package will be a video series on installing your blog (and your options), details on how to get your blog highlighted in USA Today (for FREE), the “Who Should Be Blogging?” teleseminar, my “WordPress Secret” and more.
  • Delivery mechanisms will be plentiful (and all managed by Premiumcast.com). For the “Web 1.0 types” we’ll have a private membership site. For the more adventurous, the entire program can be delivered by RSS to the (audio and video) player of your choice. For the Casgle Podium beta test participants, they’ll have the chance to get the class delivered right to their “little black boxes.”

The video below, “The 7 Laws of Profitable Blogging” – should give you a taste of what is to come.

As I write this, the BlogTheMedia.com website ain’t much. That’s because, all along the way, I’m updating and taping the videos for the students to watch. You can expect something fun on Monday.

If you are interested in getting all of the BlogTheMedia.com Free Preview Week Content sent to your inbox (including the USA Today offer), send a blank email to BlogTheMedia@PaulColligan.com.

And, of course, you can always subscribe to this blog through any of the many options found here.

The robots will handle the rest.

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Sharing The Linkluv Within Our Little Sphere Of Influence

Really, Paul, you don’t just update your Blog all day long?

No Mom, I’ve told you this before. For example, this week:

So, yes, Mom, I’ve been busy this week.

How have you and Dad been?

Elsewhere Online …

Really, Mom, I do more than just post to this blog.

Friday June 15th, Noon, The Ask Paul Colligan Webcast, Premium Podcast, eMedia Content Source, Affiliate Marketing Tutorial, And More …

On Friday, June 15th at Noon, Pacific time, I’ll be blending a number of my favorite topics: affiliate marketing, Podcasting, Webcasting and making a few bucks online.

It will be, initially, a free webcast for anyone who submits a question (and it doesn’t even really have to be a good one – I just might not answer the lousy ones).

I’ll be using PhoneAndWebcast.com to make the live streaming thing happen.

For those who ask a question that I answer live on the Webcast, we got something special for them as well ;-).

The content will be repurposed as a free Podcast and a Premium Podcast. We’ll also sell it, eventually, at the eMedia Marketplace.

If you want to see how this whole thing will be done and/or are curious about the world of Affiliate Marketing, I encourage you to participate.


What Is Your Single Most Important Question About Effective Affiliate Marketing

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