Make Your Prospect Want You – Part 2

Prospects will seek you out if you become the magnetic solution to their pain. Positioning yourself as the ‘guru’ in their niche is a sure way to draw them to you.

Entrepreneurs, who shout with pride and joy that they simply ‘declared’ themselves the expert, often omit to recount the hours, the expense, the discipline and mindset of acquiring the specialized knowledge which must be in place before you proclaim yourself as the expert.

If you proclaim yourself the leader and no one is following then you are either out on a limb or out for a walk – pick your choice.

Evidence of your expertise will come from:

  • The ideas you communicate as you put out your content in various forms.
  • Evidence of the usefulness of your specialized knowledge in terms of providing solutions to real contemporary problems
  • Testimonials from raving fans and
  • Buzz about you from other experts and thought leaders

The new rules of media and PR, especially with the advent of web 2.0 give every entrepreneur, small business owner or professional the opportunity to place your expertise directly in front of prospects.

In part 1, we looked at blogging and I encouraged you to craft a deliberate strategy to closely link your content to identified pain or passion points of your target niche and optimize title tags and keywords of your blog in a way that allow prospects to easily find you.

 

Other Ways To Showcase Your Expertise

Ezine Articles – Publish your own and duplicate/modify the content for your blog. Make sure your blog is registered at technorati.com and link your blog and ezine. Register your ezine with the ezine directories and repurpose your articles for submission to sites such as idea marketer and ezine articles.

 

Press Releases – media coverage means legitimacy and expert/trusted source. Monitor PR sites to get a feel for their focus, angle and reach. Frame your content into newsworthy angle that the media is looking for, use their guideline for submission or get some coaching help. Leave a trail that can lead prospects back to you by ensuring that PR service allows tags and links.

 

Teleseminars – Any body can do this. There are countless courses and programs to refine your skills here if necessary. The key is to know your objective. A formula I use is to state my promise in the opening grabber, have 35-40% content have 30-35 % testimonials/stories of the application of that content 10 -20% audience interaction/Q&A, 10-15% call to action.

 

Publish a Book – a book is the ultimate expert tool and it much easier to do that you may think. Today you can literally “speak your book into being’. Entrepreneurs and small business owners do not get confused about awakening their literary genius. They get clear that the objective of a book is as a direct marketing piece. Develop and objective and an outline, using a digital or telephone recording service, speak your book into being one idea or one chapter at a time. Have the audio transcribed, edit it and get help from a reputable ‘Done For You’ book publishing service to get your book out.

 

The process of developing your own expert status may take time, if you desire to go faster add the following strategy.

 

Start Speaking Regularly  – ‘become almost famous’, signal your local media, radio stations, journalist, trade associations of your availability to comment on news and trends in your area of expertise. Feed them with articles and sound bites of your won or from your personal archive.

Develop a signature talk and signal industry players, and associations that you are available for keynote presentation at meetings or conventions or special events. Before long the buzz and referral will begin.

 

Now that you have their attention you must have a Call To Action that:

 

Monetize Your Expertise

 

Develop at least 3 levels of products that prospect can access.

 

Level 1 – Information/awareness

This could be an e-book, a MP3 recording, a self assessment or skill development workshop. Any product that could be an impulse type purchase designed to get the prospect oriented to paying money for what you have to offer.

 

Level 2 – DIY/Home Study systems.

Many prospects often assume that their current skill sets can easily be transferred into other areas needed to make their business a success. They want to be able to test their comprehension and implementation ability and a DIY system aka your home study courses, gives them this opportunity at a price point they may feel more willing to invest at initially.

 

Level 3 – Personal Service Delivery

This genre is reserved for your seminars, consulting and coaching programs and is designed to yield big income surges

You can make your prospect want you. Find ways to position your self as the expert provider of creative solutions to their problem and have products or programs that allow them to choose their level of involvement with you.

 

Steer clear of both the ‘copy cat’ and the ’empty bucket’ syndrome and thrive in any economy.

 

I am currently interviewing a panel of marketing masters who will be providing numerous examples of how they positioned themselves as the one and only choice their prospects should desire. Join us any Tuesday up to May 19, 2009 to interact and learn directly from the masters.

Distributing Reprint Articles For the Best Results

There are many writers who are utilizing article distribution services to get articles published in ezines and newsletters and on websites. These articles always have a link back to the website of the writer in the article’s Resource Box — the About the Author information which typically follows an article. This has always been one of the best methods a webmaster could use to generate web traffic to his or her site.

The Economic Value Of Distributing Articles

When comparing the cost of preparing an article and distributing it to publishers and webmasters, your overall articles costs are still really small… Especially when you compare that cost against the cost of buying advertising in the same ezines, newsletters and websites that will publish your article. On top of that, when a website publishes an article that you wrote, the article will usually remain on the website for years to come. But, when you buy an ad for your business at a website, you need to pay that advertising rate every single month for as long as your want your ad to remain on that website.

When you want to measure the effectiveness of an article, you should measure the cost of advertising in the ezines and newsletters where you were published, plus the cost of advertising on the websites where your article was reprinted.

If you invest the time and effort to calculate the value of the advertising earned from a reprint article versus the cost of creating and distributing that article, you will quickly realize why so many people recommend this promotional technique.

Traffic is a Two-Sided Coin with Reprint Articles

When we first got into writing articles for promotional purposes, we were entirely focused on getting our articles published in ezines and newsletters. The all-important link back to your site can reach thousands of publishers, and through the publishers, you can quite possibly reach millions of readers. And these are not just ordinary readers either; they are members of YOUR target audience.

The ezines and newsletters that will publish your articles have already told their readers that they will be providing information on the topics that you have written about. And, the readers have all taken a pro-active step to add their email address to the mailing list of the ezine that is publishing your work.

While most ezines have a subscriber base in the range of ten to twenty thousand, there are still some really large ezines with subscribers in the hundreds of thousands out there that will be happy to share your materials with their readers.

These days, it is all about the search engines. Webmasters want to add fresh content to their websites regularly, so they can improve their search engine traffic. And, writers want to see their articles on third-party websites, so that they can build their link popularity and improve their own search engine positioning.

The Nature of Getting Your Articles in Ezines AND Websites

Once, you have taken the time and effort to create your reprint articles, you will want to send them to the largest number of publishers and webmasters who have expressed an interest in publishing what you have written.

Many writers who are just getting started will try to do all of the distribution work themselves. They will search high and low to find the sites that accept reprint articles and they will look for the article distribution mailing lists that other writers are using. Then, they will commence the task of distributing their articles to the various sites and lists that accept reprint articles.

The entire process can be very time-consuming and frustrating for the writer. Most lists will only permit you to distribute your articles if you are willing to accept other writer’s articles as well. If you find yourself subscribed to one of the bigger mailing lists, you could legitimately get hundreds of articles a day dropped into your mailbox. Add to this the fact that most writers are subscribed to up to seven different distribution lists, and then that one hundred articles a day could become seven hundred articles per day. Some people want out of the distribution lists the day after they start.

Then you have the added challenge of remembering what the posting rules are for each mailing list that you will join. Pushing the rules to the side and forging ahead could get you banned from participation in many of the article distribution lists.

Keeping everything straight and muddling through all of the incoming messages is tough enough for the average marketer. But, then you add the challenge of getting your article into the article databases that offer reprint articles to publishers. Each article archive directory generally requires for you to login and to follow their unique posting rules to get your articles into their database. This requires even more of the writer’s time.

Most writers end up making some type of compromise in order to get their articles distributed. They will either set aside half a day to a full day for the distribution of a single article, or they will limit their distribution range to the mailing lists and article sites that make it easy for them to accomplish the greatest results in the least amount of time.

What many writers fail to realize is that some of the article distribution lists where they are trying to submit articles, are not accepting their articles. Others aren’t accepting anyone’s articles and haven’t done so since 2000. Some are still accepting articles, but only from those people who were approved for unlimited posting privileges prior to the disappearance of the list moderator some time ago. These writers, who already feel pressed for time, are wasting more precious time submitting articles to lists and reprint article directories that are not accepting their article submissions.

Sometimes It Makes Sense to Employ a Service Provider

There are a handful of well-established and experienced distribution services that can get your article to multiple publishers with very little time investment on your part. The distribution services will do this for a small fee and send your article to targeted publishers of ezines, newsletters and websites. Rates vary from service to service.

Many writers use a number of article distribution services to distribute their articles. The reason is that all services use SOME of the same distribution outlets, but all services also have unique outlets not available to the other service providers.

The writers who use a number of services do so to increase the overall reach of their articles, to maximize their results.

The Changing Marketplace

Recently there have been a number of new distribution services popping up who claim to be able to distribute your articles to publishers at a lower cost. These new distributors are offering bargain basement rates such as $40 for three months and unlimited article submissions. Sounds like a great deal right? Well there are a number of problems with using a cheap service such as this.

The primary problem with these cheap service providers is that you will put all of your articles into their database at your convenience. Then, the service will turn around and distribute all of the articles you have put into their database, on the same day that you put them into their database.

Here is the problem. Nearly every article distribution mailing list in existence has a limit of one or two article submissions per writer per day limit.

Suppose for example that you put 100 articles into the service’s database in the same day. Then the cheap distribution service will turn around and send all 100 of your articles to the article distribution mailing lists on that same day. Your first or second article may get full distribution. Your next 98 articles will be deleted from the groups without ever having been posted. And, you will likely find yourself banned from future participation in the article distribution groups.

So, if you think that you are saving money by using a bargain basement newcomer, you really aren’t. That $40 you spent will only get two of your articles into circulation. The other 98 articles you put into the cheap service’s database will never reach beyond that service’s website.

Professionals Can Make a Difference

A major article distribution company understands the intricacies of the world of article publishing, whereas a cheap newcomer is simply looking to make a quick buck off of you.

If you want your articles and links to reach the targeted publishers and targeted audiences that would be interested in purchasing your goods or services, then you should seriously consider spending a little more money to use a well established distributor from the outset. This will also save you the time and hassle of posting articles that will never see the light of day.

In the end, you want the best bang for your buck.

Sometimes the best bang for your buck requires that you spend a little more money upfront. With an established and experienced article distribution company, you might just find that you can get better results from each article, and you will still have an audience for your articles two weeks or two years from now.

You can make the most of your advertising when you use an article distribution company who will put your needs first — always keeping in mind what will help YOU to generate the best results for your investment.