In Part I of this article, I introduced you to the concept of part-time Internet wealth — whatever “wealth” means to you. The concept applies whether you want to make hundreds of thousands of dollars or millions. In Part I, I outlined the basics of the concept, and discussed a situation in which my own company profited for years by working short-term and part time on a particular project.
I also introduced the first five of a series of 12 tips to put you on the course to part-time wealth: Step #1: You need a complete line of products and services at different price points; Step #2: You’ve got to offer something with the “Wow” factor; Step #3: You’ve got to have tripwire products to attract prospects; Step #4: Create top-notch sales copy for your complete line; and Step #5: Use tools like WordPress to create inexpensive but high-quality websites.
Let’s pick up right where we left off.
Step #6: If you’re going to make money on the Internet, you’ve got to have an affiliate program. My suggestion here is adapt one of the modern affiliate programs that pay 75%-00% commissions. So now you’re probably thinking, “How in the world can I make money giving away 100% commissions?” It’s actually very easy. All your initial products, your tripwire, low-cost products — you let your affiliate have all that money. They’re the ones marketing it, they’re the ones assuming the risk, they’re the ones doing the work — even if they have loyal customers who love them and they don’t have to do much work except send it out.
You see, those loyal customers took considerable time and effort for them to acquire, so do whatever you can to make it as advantageous as possible for your affiliates. Give them a great deal. Roll out the red carpet for them; treat them like rock stars. The companies who make the most money with the affiliate programs are the ones who do the best job of treating their top affiliates well. They show them lots of love and lots of appreciation. These people get out there and make a lot of money for themselves — and can do it for you when they entice people to purchase your high-dollar items.
Step #7: Create a sales funnel that acts as an automatic money machine. Apply it to your complete line of products and services, from low-cost tripwire items all the way up to the very expensive premiere items — because you’ve got to have some of those in your mix, too.
The perfect time to re-sell to somebody is right after they buy something from you. They’ve already got the credit card out, they’re already in that buying mood, so now is the time to sell them more stuff. A sales funnel does this automatically, especially on the Internet. Every time they click a button and buy, it thanks them for the purchase — and then it makes them an additional offer for another product or service at a great price.
Step #8 is to maintain a consistently changing product line. You can’t keep selling only the same few things. People are addicted to new stuff. But here’s the thing: it’s a little complicated, but I want you to think about this. In actual fact, it’s only the veneer of newness most people are really looking for.
You see, even though people are addicted to the new, they also take great comfort in buying familiar types of products or services. So there must be familiar elements within anything new — elements similar to what they already bought before. This is very confusing to some people. What I’m saying is that it’s got to be the same as they bought before… but a little different.
My best example of this is rock bands. Each band’s songs are basically the same. They use the same chords, rhythms, and themes; they all have a specific style or sound. Once you get a taste for that sound, you don’t want to see a lot of variation. You want the songs to all sound similar, because that’s what you’re used to. And so while every song is different, they’re all familiar underneath.
So in reality, while people do want new stuff, it’s got to fall within a certain range of familiarity and comfort to sell effectively.
Step #9 and Step #12 on my list are related. Step #9 is your front-end marketing; you’ve got to have the right front-end marketing strategy to truly succeed. Marketing on the front end is all about the things you do to acquire new customers and bring them into the fold, getting them to do business with you the first time. The last thing on my list is your back-end strategy, and I think it’s important to talk about them as if they’re one, because marketing is everything you do to attract and retain customers. Retaining is the job of your back-end marketing system.
It’s your responsibility to systematize all this as much as you can, and to do it consistently. Make sure you’re always doing something to bring in new customers on a continual basis. I told you in the beginning that a lot of what I would share today is common sense — but a lot of business owners violate this one, because they don’t consistently draw in new customers automatically.
Your tripwire products and specialized new customer promotions must bring in new customers on a steady, continual basis; that’s the basis of your front-end marketing system. The back end, again, involves the steady, consistent working of a sales funnel that’s doing some of the upselling for you. But you’re not just depending on your sales funnel and its automatic features, you’re aggressively making additional offers to your existing customers, getting them to come back again and again. You’re always looking for new products or services to offer them.
When running a business, there’s nothing more important than consistency. So however you decide to do it, systematize your new customer acquisition so that it works automatically. You may tweak it a bit, but you shouldn’t have to constantly monitor it. Keep it running, but have other people run it for you.
Step #10 is your merchant account. It can be a challenge finding a decent one. The credit card companies are all about the consumer, not about the merchant. That used to upset me, but then I started thinking about it from their perspective. Of course they’re all about the consumer; that’s how they make their money. Now, it’s a supply/demand issue, and they do try to take good care of the merchants. But, you’ll occasionally have problems with them. So, take good care of that merchant account, and have two or three of them if you can. If you have problems with one, you can just use another. Consider PayPal also, and if you’re selling digital products, you can use ClickBank. They’ll process all your credit cards for you, and are essentially a type of merchant account.
Step 11: Build a good staff. The smartest thing you can do is work through a competent group of employees. Don’t just try to do everything yourself. A good staff will free you up to do the things you enjoy doing, as well as the things that can bring your company more money. As a rule of thumb, if you can find talented people to do something cheaper and better than you can, hire them. Don’t look at them as an expense; they’re an asset, something that makes you money instead of costing you money. Remember, my concept here is “part-time wealth.” The richest people all have staffs they depend on. They’re valuable in so many ways, and it can be a lot of fun working with the right people.
Step #12 is re-selling to customers repeatedly. That’s your back-end marketing — and that’s where all the profits are made. I’ve already talked about this a little. Your generate your profits by getting people to come back repeatedly and do more business with you. Many markets are insatiable. The members will continue to re-buy from you if you provide the right products and services.
Remember: in most markets, people want more of what they bought from you the first time. They want all the biggest benefits — and if you’re not offering them additional products and services, they’ll go somewhere else for them. So they might as well give you their money. That’s how you’ve got to think to succeed here.
One thing to consider is that in your product/service mix, you should include items that pay you residually. These are items that are sold on a “’til forbid” basis. Somebody buys them and says, “Yes, I’ll pay $30 a month (or whatever) for these additional services.” So you keep charging their credit card until they tell you to stop. This income comes in automatically until they cancel, which they can do any time.
Those are my 12 Steps to Part-Time Wealth. Now, you may say, “But T.J. — there’s nothing here that sounds part-time!” Well, I’ll admit that it does take time and effort to set all this up — but once it’s in place, it definitely becomes part-time. Having a staff to do the heavy lifting for you will free you up for other things. Having front-end and back-end marketing systems that are systematized and work automatically will free more time up. So will finding good joint venture partners who can do a lot of the work for you.
In these few pages, I’ve tried to explain some factors that took me many years to learn — and that I’m still learning. Don’t let anybody try to convince you that they’ve got it all figured out. They’re lying to you. They’re constantly learning, too, and they don’t have all the answers, no matter how much they try to pretend they do.
I’m not saying that they’re all scamming you. Some people are actually deluded enough to think that they have it all figured out. But their day is coming when they’ll find they don’t. They might just be on a winning streak that’s about to end. Your best bet is to find other people who are making millions of dollars and study them — or have them teach you. All you’ve got to do is figure out exactly what they’re doing and do it too, and you can make millions of your own.