There are thousands of people joining the “affiliate blogging” and “online course” games every week.
They all use the same old pattern: Publish free content on their affiliate sites and recommend/sell products, software tools and online courses.
- The affiliate content marketing model has low conversion and doesn’t build your audience.
- Your blog is like a sieve. People come and leave, only a small percentage clicks your links and buys.
- There are tons of free courses, lead magnets, emails. These dilute the market.
- Free offers are usually “splinters” of the main backend product.
- This results in a conflict of interests – if you give everything away in your free product, nothing will be left to sell in your paid product.
- You are forced to hold information back and you refuse/pretend to help those that don’t pay.
The Successful “Give All Your Value First” Model
Since too many pretend something is free when it isn’t, “Free” has become perverted, resulting in “freebie exhaustion”, “lead magnet fatigue” and this destroys your conversions.
The pretense and the switch and bait tactics destroy trust. Even if you can convince someone to buy once, your recurring sales will suffer.
It works much better to give your prospects ALL the value for FREE without holding anything back.
Giving away a very high quality product without a paywall, you can attract a much wider audience. Bigger audience = more conversions.
You are probably asking, “If you give EVERYTHING for free, how do you ever make money?”
Well, this is exactly what Google, Facebook, Amazon, eBay or Pinterest are doing. You would never imagine any of these companies give away a “free checklist” to sign up for their platforms, right? Or do you ever see them write blog posts to target a specific keyword?
They don’t care about content marketing, keywords, links, still they have more traffic than you can ever hope for. They are beyond SEO.
There are three main factors that resulted in their success:
- Their “free offer” is an extremely useful in-demand service for which they could even charge a monthly fee
- Their actual income is completely separate from their free offer
- Viral effect coming from free value and mass appeal
Let’s see what they do:
- Google offers a free search engine while it makes money from advertising
- Facebook offers free messaging while it makes money from advertising
- Amazon provides a free marketplace of cheap products for buyers while it makes money from sellers
Hotmail was the first company to use this method.
Can you believe that email wasn’t always free?
In fact it wasn’t until 1996 that Hotmail started to offer free internet email.
They decided that the best way to entice new customers would be to reach the friends, family and colleagues of the users they had.
So, in the footer of each and every email that was sent from a Hotmail account, the Hotmail team placed a link that read something like this: “Want a free email account? Sign-up for Hotmail today!”
And yes, believe it or not, this strategy went, as we know call it, viral. Hundreds of thousands of users hurriedly signed up for their free email accounts and the rest is history.
How To Use This For Your Business
I don’t care how the gurus tell you that they are making $50k from a $999 course launch.
I have created my first course two years ago, but I have always been struggling with course sales.
- They have a big list, I don’t.
- They have a known brand, I don’t.
- People don’t buy my courses.
- People sign up for my free courses and I get 20-40 percent email open rates.
- People buy the software products I recommend and I make commissions from these
If you don’t have a known brand, you won’t sell sh#t.
Building a brand takes time
My bright idea:
Following the winning strategy of Google, Facebook, etc, separate your free service from the line of products you are selling.
So instead of offering a PAID sales funnel course and trying to sell it for $127, I created the ULTIMATE FREE course that promotes affiliate products (page builders, etc) in its tutorials.
This way I don’t need to hold myself back. I can tell you EVERYTHING I know about funnels, because selling the course isn’t my source of money. Because it is high quality, people will recommend it to others.
You may say that this only works for internet marketing and “make money” niches, but that is not true.
Do you sell laptops? Why not create a Laptop Specialist Course? Or the Ultimate Laptop Blackbook?
Make it really comprehensive and include everything about the properties of a laptop. How much RAM do you need if you want to run certain games? What screen size and screen resolution should you choose? What kind of mouse? Laptop bag? How to protect your laptop? How to protect your eyes? Software they absolutely need.
Are you in the survival niche? Why not create the Ultimate Survival Course? Then you can link to survival products.