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?

Why Is There No Kindle Version Of The Business Podcasting Bible?

A few more observant readers have asked a great question – why is there no Kindle version of the Business Podcasting Bible?

Want the truth?

To really look at the truth, we need to look at a couple of other books in Amazon with my name on them. There is Special Edition Using Microsoft FrontPage 2003 and there is also Special Edition Using Microsoft FrontPage 2002. Let’s not forget The Business Podcasting Handbook: Turning Podcasts Into a Force-Multiplier for Your Business.

FrontPage 2003 is for a product that Microsoft killed after that release. A Kindle version would be downright silly. FrontPage 2002 doesn’t have my name on it at Amazon, but funny enough, all of the published ones out there do. Same is true for a Kindle release of this one. No use in chasing a dead topic.

Funny enough, the “other” Podcast book NEVER EXISTED and Larstan Publishing still hasn’t taken down the listing. I think the reason for lack of a Kindle version for that one should be pretty obvious. Yes, Amazon has lots of listings of products that never existed.

Confused?

You should be.

FrontPage 2003 is a great book about a product that is simply in the past. I’m proud of the book but not waiting for anymore royalties. Same is true for the 2002 book (regardless of who’s name Amazon has on the front cover). There are still a box or two of them in my basement and I’ll probably send them to be recycled soon.

The Business Podcasting Bible is also a great book but it is, in short, about Podcasting 1.0.

We’ve come a long way since then. It stands alone great for her moment in time, but things have changed pretty dramatically since I wrote that thing.

Things have gotten much better, much bigger, much more exciting.

Put the book on Kindle? I’m not going to do anything to let anyone thing the world of 2006 era Podcasting is worth examining – in Kindle form or otherwise.

There is actually one book on Podcasting at Amazon that not only costs more than mine, but MAKES NO MENTION OF ITUNES – it was written that long ago. No Kindle version for that one either.

What about the money that could come with a second, updated, printing?

Oh, the stories I could tell … but I will give you a clue – that ain’t where the money is.

Fun fact: Did you know that Amazon Kindle numbers don’t make it into top seller and book chart lists? They consider the information proprietary.

Yup, that’s how few they sell in the grand scheme of things.

What about that book with my name on it that doesn’t exist, or that book that does have my name on it, but doesn’t show it that way in Amazon? Yes, the book publishing industry is that messed up.

I’m just not that worried about Amazon anymore.

I own my media future.

I suggest you do the same.

Amazon may have a part in it but … she will then become a tool that I use and not vice versa.

We give everyone who buys Podcast Secrets a copy of the Business Podcasting Bible in PDF format as part of the package. I still stand behind everything the book says – but there is just so much more to the story that I’m tired of waiting for Amazon, or any other publically traded company, to tell it correctly.

I’m entering into a new space with Podcast Secrets 3.0 and I recommend you come along for the ride.

It won’t be on Kindle.

You won’t be able to grab it at Amazon.

And when I’m done with the program, you’ll understand why.

And you’ll laugh at Amazon too.

Don’t get me wrong, I love my Kindle. And my Kindle app on the iPad. I love reading books without having to kill a tree. You’ll see content from me on the Kindle soon eough.

But, sometimes, the topic is bigger than a book.

And then it doesn’t make sense in book form – dead tree edition, or Kindle, or anything else.

How big is your topic?

Free Podcast Training – Tonight Only!

UPDATE: The live event is completed/over. If you’d like to grab the recording (and we got a good one), sign up at http://www.podcastsecrets.com.

Tonight at 5p Pacific, 8p Eastern, I’ll be recording LIVE a new presentation called “The Seven Deadly Sins Most Podcasters Make And What You Can Do To Avoid Them.” It’s for the coming Podcast Secrets 3.0 class – but this one is a free.

The content is SOLID. It’s the summary of what I’ve learned in helping Podcasters for the last 5 years.

There will be a surprise or two along the way as well – but here is the access information:

Again, we start prompty at 5p Pacific / 8p Eastern. There is more than an hour of content in there – but we’ll get as close to 60 minutes as we can.

I reserve to the right to charge for this content at a later date but between now and then, your access is free!

Podcast Secrets has a Twitter account – it’s http://www.twitter.com/podcastsecrets. It is also at Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/podcastsecrets. Would it be silly to mention the YouTube page at http://www.youtube.com/user/podcastsecrets?

When Does A Podcast No Longer Require Her Own Website?

At the big Ed Dale “Coming Home 3″ event this weekend, we got a chance to record a very special live version of Internet Marketing This Week as well as talk over some changes and ideas we have for future versions of the show. A plan for season 2, if you will. More on the specifics of that later.

One of the big questions we asked … Does the show actually need a website anymore? The Facebook Fan Page for the site does pretty much everything we do at the site – and it always feels pretty silly duplicating our content efforts.

We could easily make www.internetmarketingthisweek.com forward to the Facebook page and lose very little – while gaining back some time in the process.

Obviously, if we were an entity that sold ads at the site, we wouldn’t be asking this question. Since the monetization of the Podcast comes from building an audience that knows, likes and trusts us, what point is there in having the site?

And, if needed, we could always put ads and the like into the copy of the content at Facebook – disclosing accordingly of course.

I thought I’d pass this question on to you and see what you have to say.

When does a Podcast no longer need her own Website?

Weekend Roundup: Podcast Secret’s Season Edition

Finally, Podcast Secrets season is here. We are now at version 3 and slowly bringing it all together. The new site isn’t live (at the time I write this) but we got a few things worth mentioning for the weekend:

  • The Podcast Secrets Facebook Page will be home to a ton of news as we go through the launch process. In a move to get as many likes as possible, there will be some free content we are only going to send to people who “like” the page. You just have to love the Facebook update feature.
  • Podcast Secrets on Twitter doesn’t just follow what we’re doing, but she follows the tweets of some of our favorite Podcast Secrets Faculty and just plain Podcasters that we like.
  • Hot Podcast Tip: Did you know that Facebook is becoming a very powerful place to store Podcast “show notes?”. To get the cool play buttons like you see at the Internet Marketing This Week Podcast at Facebook Page, you only need to add the URL of an MP3 file to your post. Go ahead and try it,

Make yourself a better person this weekend. Listen to a Podcast.

Podcast Advertising Appeals to “Unreachable” Consumers? Can We Sell Ourselves Any Shorter?

Last week, the ADM (my favorite association for our space) teamed with Edison Research (the smartest market research firm in the world) to produce a Webinar called “Consumer Attitudes On Podcast Advertising.” The recording of the whole event has been placed at their site – I highly recommend a viewing.

With a title like “Consumer Attitudes On Podcast Advertising” and a firm like Edison who actually does research, as opposed to prove points for money, you can imagine the content presented. It was dead on, and from what I remember from statistics class, very viable in the polling methodology.

So, I’ll say it again (despite what the comments below will state), this is the best research to date on Podcast Advertising. By Podcast Advertising we mean ads inside of free publically available Podcasts. The research was solid there, and the prospects were good for that option.

Again, fans of the ADM and Edison and what they’re doing.

But … (you knew this was coming).

I still think strong that we’re selling ourselves short – way short.

The power of “New Media” is not that we’re a faster, cheaper “Old Media” with swear words. If the only difference between “us” and “them” is that we don’t have to get a broadcast license, and our biggest battle is in proving to the world that “we matter too” when it comes to CPM ad inserts, … I want out.

Again, not trying to criticize the work done here, but trying to encourage focusing on the things that matter:

I truly believe that if our space spent half the energy it currently spends on proving legitimacy (and complaining about the lack of advertisers) on exploring and trying alternative (do I dare say “new”) profit models, we’d see ten times the growth (and a lot more smiles at our industry events).

My goal here is a simple one: I’d like to suggest that we spend additional time (and equal effort) examining the options that have a considerably higher success rate so far as legitimate standards and part of the “dialogue.” The day the ADM Sponsors a study on “Non-Traditional Revenue Trends In Downloadable Media” and the New Media Expo offers a “Death Of The CPM – Alternative RevGen Models In New Media” track is the day thousands of Podcasters quit their day job.

Another report or blog post on how listeners don’t like pre-rolls just ain’t gonna cut it.

Let me respond to the first couple of comments before they even get entered below:

Yes, folks like Leo Laporte will be able to use slides from this presentation to bump up their CPMs. God bless ’em as they do. Remember that not only does Leo collect way more in sponsorship money than most, he also collects way more in audience donations than most Podcasters will ever make (even after this report is released). He also partners with others for free bandwidth (it’s the fully disclosed affiliate model people), has invested a ton of cash in his studio (I don’t hear him having debates about the “best USB microphone under $100″), and has a full staff behind him. He’s playing all the angles and I respect him for it. Please remember, this is the model Leo loves and Leo has been able to make profitable. It doesn’t make it gospel.

For the bit about “opportunists” are the ones looking to revenue from the premium model (it’s in the recording), I’d suggest you do a search on what people thought about “paying for television” in the 70s – and then make a list of ten friends who don’t have cable tv today.

For the “I don’t want to sell out” crowd, I ask how an ad for something (and remember, the study told us ones read by the host are best) is any less of a sell out than an merchandise line, premium option or affiliate play. Disclose away and enjoy the benefits of an audience that actually like you.

For the people don’t pay for content world, I beg you to explain HBO to me.

I guess, in short, I’d like to suggest that we got options people … why won’t we take them (let alone talk about them)?

Flame away …

Listen In As We Record An Episode Of Internet Marketing This Week – LIVE

5p Pacific / 8p Eastern – Internet Marketing This Week Episode #15 – Recorded LIVE

Things can (and will) go wrong in this test – to get real time updates about what is going on, follow Internet Marketing This Week in Twitter.

The Experiment Is Over – And It Went Pretty Well. Subscribe to Internet Marketing This Week On iTunes Today And You’ll Get The Episode The Second It Is Ready.

Tomorrow The Complaint Emails Will Begin

This, you can take to the bank.

I’ll start getting complaints tomorrow via email.

A midnight tonight we raise the price of Podcast Secrets 2009 by $200.

Emails have been sent.

On every call we mention it.

It’s on the replays.

It’s everywhere.

But tomorrow, people will start complaining that we didn’t tell them.

What this says about the “effectiveness” of emails and the human condition is another post all together, but you can count on these like clockwork.

Of course, the real nasty emails will come when we close the class Saturday at midnight.

Podcast As The Secret Weapon

And the final piece in the New Media Realities series is below. In this one I examine the Podcast As The Secret Weapon:

Let me give you the 50,000 foot overview: You can create content fast with the New Media Content Creation Model. Leverage Web 2.0 and you can achieve the ISYOT Effect. Let your content escape the computer and the Internet by leveraging the power of Podcasting.

Want more specifics? Join us for the Podcast Secrets 2009 Preview Call on Thursday night.

Would love your thoughts here – or at YouTube.com.

ISYOT Effect – Who Else Wants This?

I love the ISYOT effect.

Forget being at the top of the results, BE THE RESULTS.

Would love your comments below: