How to be a Writer and Publisher Self-Fulfilled: www.GaryAScott.com

Self-Fulfilled:
How to be a Writer and Publisher
by Gary A. Scott
Copyright 2005
www.GaryAScott.com
International Service Center, Inc.
157 Little Horse Path
Lansing, NC 28643
Table of Contents
Introduction: Self-Fulfilled……………………………...
1
1. A Day in the Life of a Publisher…………………………
3
2. What is a Publisher? ……………………………………. 12
3. How to Market………………………………………….. 23
4. Seeing the Big Picture………………………………….. 37
5. Creating a Product…………………………………........ 52
6. How to Focus a Product……………………………....... 72
7. How to Finish a Creation……………………………….
85
8. Selling…………………………………………………..
98
9. Forms of Selling……………………………………….. 127
10. Selling Channels……………………………………….. 159
11. Websites and the Internet……………………………… 168
12. Fiction and Cultural Creatives………………………… 187
13. Gaining Extra Benefits from Writing & Publishing…… 204
14. New Age Digital Publishing…………………………… 215
15. Spotting Trends………………………………………… 227
16. Bits and Stuff…………………………………………… 250
Introduction: Self-Fulfilled
Informed
Informed. What a powerful word, described in the dictionary as “to give or impart
knowledge. To make known; to give evident substance, character or distinction; to pervade
or permeate with manifest effect. Illuminate, inspire and instruct.”
Wow! We (this means you) can do this! What a privilege and honor. What a responsibility.
Welcome to such sacred and hallowed ranks. Welcome to the world of publishing.
Even better…Welcome to the world of self publishing, a universe where you can get started
now because self publishing puts your fate and good fortune in your own hands. As a self
publisher, you are the boss. You are in control.
As a self publisher you can immediately improve your life as well as make contributions to
society. Whether you want to be a humanitarian, a leader in your community or just want to
increase your income, you can do all this and more through self publishing.
You join a pretty famous group such as Mark Twain, Beatrix Potter, TS Eliot and
Virginia Woolf who all began as self publishers.
The wonderful fact is regardless of background, financial position or age, you can become a
self publisher now and have a life that leads you wherever you want to go.
Self publishing can change your life. It sure changed mine. Growing up I never journeyed
further from Portland, Oregon than Boise, Idaho. Yet during the past 37 years, self
publishing has allowed me to travel the world (over 70 countries so far).
I began as the son of a zoo keeper with no financial background, no money, no
experience and certainly no educational experience in writing or publishing.
Self publishing has brought me a small fortune. I am writing this in the winter from my
condo near the beach in Naples, Florida and my wife Merri and I have just returned from our
866 acre hacienda in Ecuador. Soon we’ll head back to our 250 acre farm in North Carolina.
All these are ours without a penny of debt. Plus we have millions in the bank all through self
publishing.
Our five children have higher educations (one is a vet, one an MBA from London School of
Economics) and they have graduated from such wonderful institutions such as University of
Valencia (Spain), University of Edinburgh (Scotland) and universities in London and
Birmingham, England as well as Oregon and Florida. They have been able to get the
education they desired, with the help of our self publishing business.
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I am not bragging about the money. Frankly I am surprised and amazed that someone with
credentials as poor as mine could do this! The point is if I can do this through self
publishing, you can too.
Far more important than money is the way that self publishing has brought our family closer
and closer over the years. My wife and I get to spend every day working together on
subjects we enjoy. Our lives have been financially and intellectually fulfilled. We travel and
live worldwide and our family self publishing business has helped make all this possible.
There are side benefits as well. The publishing business is one of the most independent and
free careers in the world. Our U.S. constitution protects us. No governing authority can
make us stop, go to school or suspend our publishing license. We can write freely whatever
we desire. And there are numerous tax benefits to self publishing as well.
Most of all, self publishing offers a fulfilled life where you can always immerse yourself in
subjects that you desire. This makes life wonderful and keeps us young. At an age when we
can start collecting social security, Merri and I feel we are just starting. We have so many
ideas we want to write and share we never plan to retire. Who could even consider quitting
when work is so much fun?
Plus we can make many positive statements as self publishers. No one can stop us from
pointing out the problems that exist in our world. We are free to make suggestions that
may bring more peace, increased happiness, enhanced security, added abundance, more
happiness and deeper joy in the world.
You’ll never know when some little thing you publish may make a big difference.
Self publishing also brings a wonderful sense of excitement. Every new subject we publish
is like a new child born and seems even more interesting. Yet of all the projects I have
undertaken, this course “Self Fulfilled- How to be a Publisher” is a favorite so I am especially
excited about sharing my experiences in self publishing with you.
Gary
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Lesson One
A Day in the Life of a Publisher
Morning mists of early dawn lay in sheets at meadow’s edge. Pale sunlight warms
morning birds that dance on pine straw and applaud the rising sun. Their song is
harmony with the creek rushing below, nature’s sweet symphony in tune with the
freshness of this new day, pure and ready to enjoy.
North Carolina-deep in the mountain forest. The morning starts with a blazing sunrise
in the Blue Ridge. I am sitting in the fresh, cool air armed with a steaming mug of coffee
to ward off the morning’s chill and watching the sun reveal itself in amazing hues of
salmon and orange. My day’s work is nearly done.
I often start writing at five, even four in the morning. My goal? To write four hours a day.
I often finish at nine or even eight. Then, depending how the day feels, I can say my
day’s work is done.
Not every day is this short. Some days my wife Merri and I write a marathon staying at
the keyboard seven, eight, even twelve hours! This morning we feel like a walk in the
woods instead. Essentially my day’s real work is over. Yet by the end of the day, I will still
be thousands of dollars richer.
For the rest of the day, I do mostly as I feel. If the kids are home, we’ll play. Other days,
I just putter. Some days I take out a canvas and paint or concentrate on playing my flute.
Other days, I just sit in the sun and read. If it were turkey season, I would be sitting at
the edge of the meadow cloaked in camouflage, watching and waiting. I write in the
afternoon on turkey hunting days! I no longer hunt them but love watching them. I roam
our woods to make sure poachers stay away as well.
Such is the day in the life of a publisher. This life is as perfect as any I could ask for.
Through publishing and writing my wife, Merri, and I have become wealthy beyond our
dreams. More important we have become self-fulfilled!
This course shows how you can be a writer, publisher/self-publisher, make
millions (if you wish) and most important, be self-fulfilled too.
Let me be honest. I can work four or five hours a day but normally work more. I
probably work more hours than most. Often I write seven days a week plus spend even
more time working at the rest of my publishing business.
To be really financially successful, especially in the beginning, publishing will probably
require you to work hard too. What sets publishing above most businesses is that you can
choose the amount and type of work you want to do. Since the work can be of your
choosing, it can also be fun. With fun, work doesn’t seem like an effort.
I start my work early because I love doing so. I feel cozy sitting quietly in the sunrise
creating thoughts and ideas to share with my readers. The work is not just for the money
either. I write about what interests me. The task of writing is a pleasure. I look forward
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to this time shared with the keyboard and my thoughts.
My daily work goals are to enjoy every day, provide services to the universe, earn enough
for a wonderful life and to pay for my existence.
It is easy to reach such goals through publishing. This course is about more than just how
to run your own profitable publishing business. It does give simple step-by-step
instructions on all you will need to do in a publishing business, but then it gives much
more. This course shares a way to do something you love and make a profit in the
process!
If you decide to have your own publishing business, you can have a schedule that suits
you. You don’t even have to write!
If all above is true, you are probably thinking that publishing is a pretty good deal. But
the day described is not a total description of what I do. What I really do is even better.
The day I described is the way I work at our home in North Carolina. I live differently at
our home in Naples. There after working three or four hours we quit work and take a long
walk on the beach and swim in the Gulf. Then we would choose what to do next.
In Florida we used to have another job to do since our offices were located there. We had
to pick up the mail. This was no problem either. In the publishing business, mail means
money! Everyday, hundreds, usually thousands and some days tens of thousands of
dollars (our best days were over $20,000) arrive in the mail. As you can imagine, opening
the mail was one of our favorite jobs.
We also had a place on the beach in the Dominican Republic, life was different there as
well. There, we usually ambled to the restaurant for a cup of fresh Dominican coffee, then
went for my walk on the beach, after our day’s work was done by eight or nine in the
morning.
But then Naples and our village in the Dominican Republic became crowded (Merri and I
are recluses). We added the 252 acre farm in one of North Carolina’s most remote
counties, plus bought an 800+ acre plantation in Ecuador that is really in the wild. We
also have a camp in the most remote part of the Amazon to help the small community
there and to go there and learn and grow in our experiences. Now we travel between
them following the warm weather and our desires as we avoid the crowds.
This may not be the way you want to live, but the point is that with a publishing business
you can live anywhere, anyway you wish!
I have lived in some of the most crowded cities in the world (London and Hong Kong) and
now choose to live in some of the most isolated wilderness. Both work for Merri and me
and both have worked well for our self publishing business. Publishing means money, but
it also means freedom.
Choice of home sites is not the only freedom either. We travel as well... sometimes, a
hundred thousand miles or more every year. We travel all over the world and almost
always come back from each trip with more money than when we started. All because of
publishing. Also because of publishing, wherever I go, there are friends and clients to meet.
People that respect me, and people I respect.
To top this all off, almost every trip we take is tax deductible!
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This is the lifestyle a publisher can have. You can make a fortune, gain friends, prestige,
work to your own schedule and gain enormous tax benefits too.
It won’t take you a lifetime to have a successful publishing company either. My wife and I
had become multi-millionaires within ten years from starting our self-publishing business.
Today, we have five homes and numerous cabins in North Carolina, Ecuador and Naples, no
mortgages, a lot of money in the bank and much, much more income than outgo.
But I have not touched on the two most important reasons for being a publisher. More
important than the money, the freedom, the material things and the tax benefits is the
satisfaction!
Sure we can work when we please and go where we wish, but more important, the fields in
which we work are ones we love. Work isn’t really work. We enjoy each and every day of
work. We wake in the morning excited about the projects ahead and when we go to bed,
we look forward to the next day. Because we love what we do, work becomes play. Our
work is so much a part of our lives, that we do not see our days as work. Our livelihood is a
natural, active and rewarding part of our existence and creates a certain timelessness that
most people who really work do not enjoy.
We do not sacrifice during the week to enjoy the weekend. Though we often change our
schedule on weekends, we might just as well work right through because we are having fun
with a project.
Though we take trips, it is not to get away from work, but to get stimulating fun, exciting,
new ideas for work!
Though we often stop working at four, other times we might work 12 hours a day for a
week, because we are so caught up on a project.
We have no plans for retirement. We are not patiently whiling away our life, waiting till the
day we can quit working in the expectation that we will find some magic bliss at 65. We are
not living a half life waiting for the day when we have some magic amount of money in the
bank feeling that these numbers on a sheet of paper will suddenly make us feel good.
We enjoy the bliss of each and every day, doing what we love and hoping we can
do it forever!
Another great joy is that we get to do all of this together.
I joyfully admit that this publishing business may not have succeeded at all had Merri not
been there to help me. Publishing gives us common interests many couples never have a
chance to share. We never come home from work not understanding what the other has
gone through. We enhance one another and this has added a greater dimension to our
relationship. We have so much in common through the business. This business is perfect
for us both. We make the business better by operating as a team. The business makes us
better together helping us to achieve common goals. It is possible that a couple can live
and work at home if they choose. They can have extremely low overheads full of tax
deductibles, share the same experiences and include the family in projects and mailings.
The life of a publisher can be absolutely wonderful. But can publishing be good for
you?
You don’t have to work in the morning. You can work from ten to two in the middle of the
day, from eight till midnight, or at a different time every day. You don’t have to do the
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business with your husband or wife. You can do it with your kids, a partner, employees or
you can do it all by yourself. And you can do it part-time while you keep the job you have.
Publishing can be your sole source of income or you can use publishing to make your
existing business bigger and more profitable.
You do not have to try to make millions. You don’t have to travel. You don’t have to have
homes all over. You can live and operate your own self-publishing business just about
anyway you want, if you follow a few simple rules I have discovered. You could even
operate a publishing company from a car!
This course is about those rules and how if you follow them you can be a successful
publisher and self fulfilled!
To begin let me share, why if you choose, a publishing business can be successful for you.
Turn Your Passion into Profit
One day my youngest daughter asked me what appeared to be a childish question. “What
is the greatest problem in the world”, she asked. I was about to give a quick childish reply
but realized this was a genuinely serious question. Here was a way to give my daughter
an insight into life. She was waiting, totally open and innocent, ready to accept my reply.
This could be important, I thought.
“Wait a day”, I replied.
By the evening, I still didn’t have the answer and decided to meditate and sleep on it.
Whenever I have trouble finding answers, I use a technique learned clear back in the days
when I lived in Hong Kong. I meditate and then let my sleep do the thinking. I just think
about the question, without expecting or even wanting the answer before I drift off to
sleep.
As usual my subconscious did its work. When I woke I knew a great global problem and
felt ready to answer my daughter.
At breakfast we shared this thought. “Stifled passion is a great global problem. In our
civilization we are rewarded for concentrating on thinking and stifling our feelings and
passion. Most people spend most of their times doing things they do not feel good about.
What they do is not satisfying. Because they do not love their work it becomes boring.
They don’t what to be doing currently.”
She asked for an example and I explained. “The way most of us work is a perfect
example. Most people work just to make money. Most people work so they have some
spare time to enjoy their passions and eventually retire. Hopefully they will have enough
money and enough good health to enjoy their passions. These people stifle their passions
most of the time and drudge off to work. They live for a paycheck and the dream that
some day they will be able to do what they really want to do.
“Living this way makes many people unhappy. Imagine the problem just one unhappy
person creates. People are grumpy at work. This makes their fellow workers and
customers feel bad. The products and services they provide and their customers suffer.
One unhappy person creates unhappiness in others and this gloom spreads. Giving shoddy
service and products make everyone feel even worse! By the end of the day when most
people go home they feel so bad that they even treat their loved ones poorly. This makes
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it hard for the kids to grow properly, so they are more likely to end up feeling bad when
they grow up.
“One stifled passion can create hundreds, thousands, even millions more!”
At that moment I realized why I love the publishing business so much.
Publishing is a business that allows you to turn your passion into profit!
Don’t get me wrong, you don’t have to get into publishing just to be passionate. You can
make a fortune in publishing (I can get passionate about that) but there is more to it than
just the money.
If you love golf, then publish things about golf. Love travel, fishing, dolls, art? Publish
about these things. This is the magic of publishing. You can immerse yourself in your
passion and make money in the process.
Each day in your life as a publisher can consist mainly of being involved in your passions.
Watching, doing, learning, understanding that passion better so you can share the
excitement you gain with others who share your passion. Once perfected, your publishing
business can give you an almost perfect lifestyle (one suited for you-not one dictated by
others).
Your days can be like mine. Better still, your days can be the way you want them to be.
Start working when you want to start. You will probably be eager to get going as soon as
possible. Quit when you want to quit, but chances are you’ll get so involved, the family
will have to drag you away for dinner. You can make as much money as you like, but you
will need less. Without needing fortunes to retire (because you’ll never want to), without
needing money to get away from business and with just about everything you do creating
a tax deductible business expense, your money will go further. Also when you gain bliss
with every day’s work, lots of spending that used to be done for satisfaction in life won’t
be required.
In short your publishing business can do just about everything a person could ask. I could
go on about this forever, but I hear Merri calling. Dinner’s ready, and I don’t want her to
have to come up here and drag me away!
The next lesson explains how to publish even if you don’t want to be a writer.
Publishing Points
The information industry has become one-half of our gross national product...making
publishing the ULTIMATE business.
The Great American Dream still exists! Being a publisher means you start at the top and
work with the things that YOU find interesting. People love you when you write about
them, countries love you, and businesses love you!
In publishing, you can start exactly where you are. You don’t have to give up your job.
You can even use publishing to enhance and expand your current business. There is
practically no overhead. You can work anywhere you choose. You can fill your hours,
when you are bored, when you are traveling or when you are commuting. Guess what?
Not one person cares about whether you are educated, young or old, your sex or your
race!
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So after completing the assignment below, let’s move onto the next lesson to
understand what a publisher really is.
Assignment #1: Goal Setting 101 – How to Get in Touch With Profitable Passions
Here is a big confession. I do too much and the blame is entirely with me! I take on too
many projects because they all seem so exciting. Perhaps this is my alternative to fishing,
golf, hunting and such, but there seems to be some new project offering itself each and
every day.
I am often bewildered when conducting courses to see that many self publishers find it
hard to figure out what they really want to do.
We should not be surprised that finding dreams and setting goals to turn them to reality
creates a crunch. Most of us, from the day we learn to see and hear are bombarded by
others with subtle messages (some not so subtle) that imply things we should want, how
we should be and what want we should do. Many others want us to be the way they want
us to be. Many others gain if we spend our lives struggling in dreary tasks. Many others
want us to desire bigger houses, extra cars and more stuff. Many others benefit when we
are caught in a work/spend/debt system and stay there.
Few others see the benefits of helping us learn how to really know want we really want.
(Though I do.) So let’s solve this problem right now!
How can we set goals to fulfill dreams? Where do we start?
One way is to use a business evolutionary cycle. They key is to be able to start in small
ways with an idea and then have a process that lets the idea grow from a thought into
something that can be published for profit.
The cycle goes through five steps; Idea, Enthusiasm, Education, Action, Profit or Loss
which leads us to your first assignment.
#1: Think of three ideas that might be of interest to you. Forget what anyone has ever
told you about how you should be. Go beyond thought and get in touch with what you feel.
Answer just two questions. “What would I really want to do if there were no
obstacles? What really makes my heart pound?”
That’s all we want at this stage. This is brain storming so work with whatever comes out.
We live in an era where we no longer have to suffer the tyranny of reason! So create
three ideas no matter how unreasonable they are.
Now begin three files and place one idea on a blank page and put one in each of the three
files. You should have three files, one page in each with one idea at the top.
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#2: Write on each page, below the idea why you like it. This will build enthusiasm. If no
reason comes to mind, no problem. There is no need to worry about writer’s block here.
This first goal is to work from your own emotion. Emotion, not logic provides power to see
projects through. But if we can engage our mind and our heart, it’s even better. Writing
our reasons bring in the logic. If we cannot identify the reasons at this stage no problem.
The heartfelt interest is enough.
#3: The next step leads us from enthusiasm to education. List three sources of
information about this idea. Write these sources down below the idea and the information
on why you like it.
Set specific written goals on how and when you are going to research these sources of
information and develop additional sources of information.
Follow these goals.
This is all you have to do for now. But do not miss doing this. This assignment is
important as we will build on it through the rest of the course and we’ll turn this idea into
a publishable concept as we work through the course. Or we will learn how to reject and
abandon an idea and learn when and why to do this too. If you miss this building block
now, your later lessons and assignments will have less meaning for you.
Here is an example of how to I would take these steps. When I brainstorm, so weird
things come out. Many don’t get past the drawing board (or in my case napkin writing
stage), but from a continual flow a few winners emerge (as you will see through the
course).
I have been doing this for such a long time, I can accelerate the process, but in this case
we’ll draw it out so we can learn as we go.
Step #1: Idea. Merri and I live with a dog. We love this dog (really she isn’t a dog, but a
fairy princess who came back in disguise to look after us). But that’s another story for
another time.
“The idea is that her name is Ma (you can read more about this poor old hound below) and
Ma has fleas. These fleas make Ma scratch and itch. That’s not good. I have to say it
bugs the heck out of me to hear her scratching away in the middle of the night. Plus I
hate to think of her suffering. Plus there may be diseases in those fleas (we won’t even go
there)?
Yet I recently read that dogs now live shorter lives than ever before. How (with modern
medicine) can this be? Could bad food and pollution be part of the answer? I have heard
that flea powder and flea collars and other flea killers can harm dogs and shorten their
lives? Some say this is so. I really want to know.”
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This is my idea. I have the empty file and the blank page. I have written this idea down
and it is now on the page.
Step #2: Why am I interested in this idea? If you can really tell me why humans love
dogs, you really have a winning idea. Here, I’ll settle for les because darned if I know.
I let my mind roam and wrote down everything that came to mind. This is very important.
These thoughts will help you intensify sales stories and find markets later as the idea
becomes more formed. Feel free to ramble. Jot words, lines, sentences and paragraphs,
whatever. Everything that flows here will help later! Be free, take your time. Go play in a
sandbox, have a moon bath, pull off the road and watch the cars go by. Invite someone
dangerous to tea. Go play with kids. Do something silly. Do whatever you need to let your
thinking about you and your inner feelings flow. There is no wrong or right in this
process…just you and your thoughts.
I let my mind flow and here is what came out.
“I am interested in this idea because I have warm, cuddly feelings for my dog and want to
end her scratching and itching.
I don’t want our grandson to get bitten by fleas.
Fleas in my oriental meditation carpet. Have you ever seen how nasty those darn things
look? Yuck!
I want to rid Ma of this problem in the most positive way because my goal is to help her
live as long and pleasant a life as possible.
I really dislike people with hidden agendas that will sell me flea killing stuff that makes my
dog sick just so they can make a buck.
This could be a million dollar idea. There are lots of dogs and lots of fleas and lots of dog
lovers. We feed Ma only the very best dog food which is really expensive. This idea could
pay for her dog food for life!”
There you have it. That’s the thinking that has flowed for me so far.
Before I had nothing but some rambling thoughts, some paper and an empty file. Now I
have much more, a file with a page of semi organized information that could help my dog,
many other reader’s dogs and make a few bucks (or maybe more) in the process. Plus I
have lots of space left so I can add more reasons as ideas come to me.
Step #3: I went to Amazon.com and researched “Healthy Dogs” and came up with several
books to read on the subject. The first listed was Holistic Guide for a Healthy Dog by Wendy
Volhard, Kerry Brown.
Next I went to google.com and typed in healthy flea killers and got 4,840 hits.
That gave me more than enough to set my first goal, which is to start the educational
process. I opened one more “research to do” file and wrote the following goals.
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#1: Order Holistic Guide for a Healthy Dog
#2: Upon receipt, read one chapter a day.
#3: From each chapter read and develop one contact.
#4: Read one listing a day at google.com from the healthy flea killers listings.
#5: Write one paragraph or more each day of ideas gained from what I read.
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Lesson Two
What is a Publisher?
Thick chunks of English oak crackled in the fire and cast a cheery glow on the
dreary patter of rain dripping on flagstone. My image reflected on the polished
patina was a silent witness to the troubled times I was trying to solve.
London, England. Winter 1975. I was sitting at a large oak dining table in a huge, old
cold house, alone, trying to write my first book. Only the gentle hiss of the wood and warm
comfort of the fire stopped me from total despair.
I had writer's block and had been sitting for hours. No thoughts were coming for the book.
When I did write, I hated the result. Wad after wad of writing had been thrown in the fire,
bringing no joy except a brief extra warmth from the flames that consumed my effort.
There had seemed so much to organize, so much to say, so many mistakes that could have
been made.
I almost didn't get that book started. Little did I know then that it would become a good
seller and lead to many, better things, (including millions of dollars).
I stuck to the job that day and finally began the book. I just kept working page by page and
eventually it was done. When sales started and letters came from people telling me the
book had helped their lives, I was happy I had not quit. But at the time, I had almost
failed.
You Don't Have to Write
Before you panic, understand one vital fact. You can have a wonderful publishing business
even if never write.
Publishers are people or businesses who provide others with information. The
information can be written, compiled or collected by you or can be information
that others produce. The data can be printed, on tape, CD or conveyed over the
internet. Publishers are sellers of information.
I am a writer, who self-publishes, but I also publish other people's books, lists, data and
material as well.
In this chapter, you gain tips on how to write as well as insights on how to publish without
writing.
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Old Stuff
One very successful publishing company is Dover Publications. A husband and wife started
this business publishing classic books with expired copyrights. Dover grew over the years to
make millions! The publishers do not write. They simply decide which out of print books
the public might want to read, reprint them and offer them in a catalog.
You do not have to be a writer to be a publisher. You can earn as much income (in fact
maybe more) without writing. But on the other hand if you have never written and want to,
you can.
If the truth be known, my English teachers would probably faint if they knew that I made a
living from writing. Grammar was my hex and I never learned how to diagram a sentence.
I had some great teachers, but I did not learn.
To see how easy it is to lead a satisfied, profitable life through publishing, let me share a
few of my failures. Seeing how unsuited I was for this type of career should help dispel any
fears you might have about your qualifications or ability to succeed.
Lacking in the Queen's English probably started in high school. I was a typical American,
born and brought up in Portland, Oregon and at 16, I was on my way down educationally
speaking. Like most of my buddies I had discovered girls and cars. My attention had drifted
from studies, and my previously high grade point average was headed straight down.
English was our favorite class, but not because of English. All the guys thought English was
cool because the teacher was young and she drove a red Corvette. That Corvette and the
teacher drew us to the English class like flies to a garage can. Of course we weren't much
interested in the studies. The subject on our mind did not require a vocabulary richer than
the one we already had. At least that's what we thought.
Diagramming sentences, understanding infinitives and seeing any point whatsoever in Silas
Marner were low on our list of priorities. To assume they were even on our list would be a
gross exaggeration! We were teenagers. We already knew everything important that
needed to be known!
Communicating, other than with young ladies and the innards of my 58 Chevy, was not my
thing. Grammar and I got off to a bad start.
In college, our interests enriched and grew. We added pinochle to our list. Now we young
studs (who knew it all) had three areas of stimulation. Girls, cars and cards. We had to
have something to do when we skipped English or Biology so someone always had a card
game going somewhere.
Earnest concentration on these three favorite subjects soon led us to a fourth interest,
money! Early successes in these chosen fields brought me to an early state of matrimony
and when our first daughter arrived, I quickly learned there was more to life than tinkering
with four barrel carburetors.
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The need for money quickly led to ideas about business. Working my way through college
and supporting a family required cash. The first business idea was selling life insurance to
college students.
One thing led to another and one day, before I graduated from college, my business idea
evolved into selling life insurance to business people. They had more money and reason to
buy. One prospect I approached was a risk taking entrepreneur and he sold me on his
business idea instead of my selling him insurance. He talked me into flying to Hong Kong to
sell mutual funds to the Chinese. I had never been out of Oregon (except one brief
expedition to Boise) and had never been on an airplane. Never mind. This seemed like a
good idea.
In Hong Kong I still had no interest in spelling, syntax, grammar or any writing skill.
I learned how to speak some Cantonese, but this was taught more by daily life than by any
understanding of the fundamentals of language. Being in the field of selling, I learned how
to speak clearly, but I knew nothing about writing. I traveled all around Asia for half a
decade and managed to make more than an average income. Everything seemed great.
There was certainly no need to write as long as I could talk. Then the mutual fund industry
blew up. The firm I worked for went bust. Life got serious. This last sentence by the way is
very bad grammar. More on this in a moment.
I was sort of stuck in Hong Kong. My need for money forced me to start my own business.
I didn't have much choice. Hong Kong was not the place where foreigners looked for a job.
The locals hired mostly kin, and overseas companies brought in employees from home base.
I was forced into the Hong Kong welfare system. Here is the way this system worked.
Everyone looked after his own welfare. Or starved. There were about two million Chinese
living well below the poverty line here. Many of them lived in tin and cardboard squatters
shacks on the hills. These shameful huts would slide down the mountain every time there
were heavy rains (often) leaving bodies ad ruined lives crumpled and mixed in the mud. The
body of one white skinned long nosed foreigner would not have made any difference at all!
So I set up a business providing services for other investment brokers. They, like myself,
were out of work because of the industry wide breakup. I knew brokers all over Asia and
this new business required that I continually stay in touch with brokers in numerous
countries. Since I could not be in two places at once, my ability to talk was not enough. I
had to write.
So started my love affair with the pen. My scribbling began and this was the moment I
learned about writer's block and the F word.
Overcoming the F Word
F stands for Fear. It’s amazing how it works. I learned the F word early in my sales career,
when I saw strong, grown men get the shakes over the prospect of knocking on the door of
a stranger. Later when I started speaking to groups, I saw smooth talking glib-tongued
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salesmen sweat, go weak-kneed and tongue-tied when faced with talking to a group rather
than speaking one on one. Those fears are nothing like the big FEAR of writing!
Writing, wow! Look at what you have to do. You have to say something. You have to say
it in an orderly manner and you have to say it so that it is meaningful.
And (this is one of the big fears) you do not know who will read what you write. A big fear in
public writing is created because you don't really know your audience. What if they
disagree? What if you write something wrong? What if you make a mistake? What if your
spelling is bad? What if you make grammatical errors? What if you are dull and boring?
The second fear is created because writing is so permanent. If you write and publish
something wrong, you can't immediately change it. It is out there to stay. It is out there to
haunt you again and again (or so you might think). Plus you can't watch your readers for
feedback. You can’t see if they are getting the point. You cannot adjust. Once words are
written, published and distributed, they are beyond your control and can be read again and
again. If you make a mistake, you can look like a fool and do little about it!
There I was, in Hong Kong, all those years ago, wrestling with all these FEARS. I can't
remember how many days I worked and accomplishing nothing. Finally a member of the
Hong Kong welfare system paid me a visit. His name was "Starvation". He sat down and
had a serious talk with me about my productivity. "A writer with writer's block can work
very hard," he said. "You seem to be working hard, but you only get paid for what you
produce. If you don't produce, our welfare system here is designed for the welfare of those
who do. I am employed by those who do produce to take care of those who don't!"
I got the drift of what Starvation was saying. This created a fear that was greater than my
writer's fear. I began to keep and use what I wrote. Finished, I sent out my first
publication. Somebody wrote back and said they enjoyed it. This was the biggest thrill of
my life. It encouraged me to write again and slowly over many years, I became a writer of
sorts, writing newsletters, marketing pieces and magazines.
I went through the same spooky situation after I moved to London and decided to write my
first book. Converting my skills from sales letters, magazines, newsletters and such to book
brought back the FEAR. Having been through it all before I stuck to it and eventually got
the book written. But you don't have to go through all this pain and agony because of five
lessons I learned during those times.
Five Magic Lessons for Writing
I fought fear for years. Why? What was the problem? Given enough time, I reached some
answers to these questions that can help you avoid this form of self induced agony.
When you get to the bottom line, Fear is comes from exaggerating the five “Cs” (concerns
that all writers should have). These concerns are below.
•
Content. We worry that facts we write will be wrong.
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•
Commercial value. We worry that what we write will not be worthwhile.
•
Chic Style. We worry we will be boring.
•
Correct Grammar. We worry we will make spelling, syntax or other grammatical
errors.
•
Community Respect. We worry that readers will disagree with ideas we write making
us socially incorrect.
It took years for me to tone down these fears into rational concerns. Maybe fear is good
because I was so afraid I learned five easy ways to avoid these pitfalls from the beginning.
Use them in your writing. They have editorial magic:
* Lesson #1: Say it! Forget writing. If you are worried about style or about organizing
your writing, record what you want to say, then have someone transcribe it for you (or
transcribe it yourself). You never have to write. Printed transcriptions work as well as other
types of writing.
You might not even want to transcribe. Publish audio or videos on tape or through
electronic data. You do not have to print words on paper or a screen to be a publisher.
* Lesson #2: Record it! If your concern is not having enough interesting information to
publish, then publish the data of others. In this case, get information from experts. Go to
experts, ask them what you want to know and record what they say. Publish the
transcription (if you are concerned about writing style), or publish the tapes or both.
* Lesson #3: Compute it! Most potential writers are concerned most about that which
matters the LEAST, spelling and syntax. These are cheap skills that are simply easily
bought. This is especially true now that computers exist. I use the computer program Word.
Under the heading Tools are Spelling and Grammar, Thesaurus, Hyphenation, Dictionary,
Language. I use them often. And if I make a little mistake, so what?
* Lesson #4: Hire it! Writing is a cheap skill. The lowest paid profession is journalism
(hence this course). Years ago, I understood this fact as I listened to an interview of a
famous writer. He explained a theory he called the theory of hundreds. He said that of all
the painters in the world, only a few hundred make enormous amounts of money. The rest
are poor. Of all the actors in the world only a few hundred make enormous amounts of
money. The rest are also poor. The same is true of writers, singers, etc. If you look at
stockbrokers, many thousands are multi-millionaires!
Although most writers do not make much money, many publishers make fortunes!
This course is not about writing. It is about how to have fun, make money, gain
adventure and satisfaction and tax benefits through publishing. Your job as a
publisher is to hire writers. (Or of course, you can hire yourself.) The job of a
publisher is to figure out what people want and need to know and then put that
information into a form for dissemination.
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I am a publisher first and hire myself as a writer. I publish mostly what I write. But I never
forget the fact that I make most of my money because I publish, not because I write. You
may choose to write or you may choose to publish other people's information. Your profits
will most likely be determined by your publishing skills, not your or your writer's skills.
* Lesson #5: Give usable information! The reason so many stockbrokers make so much
money, versus writers, actors, etc. is because they give usable information. Human nature
wants food clothing and shelter first. Entertainment comes later. Stockbrokers help people
make money. Their data is not even always correct, but it is usable. Keep this in mind and
everything else about publishing will come together. The graphics are not the key, the
printing is not the key, the writing, the spelling and grammar are not the keys. Useful,
valuable, current information is what counts. If this feature of your publishing business is
correct, you can be wrong with all the others and still succeed.
Here are a few ways that I and others have published without writing!
Compilations
As an example of a compilation of knowledge, I offer this example from a very successful
client. "Protect Yourself from Burglars". This publisher went to the library, to law
enforcement agencies and security companies. He compiled this data into a packet, and
sold it through direct mail. His material is excellent, helpful, contains GENUINE useful
information and sells well year in and year out.
Any time there is an area of great public concern and a lot of literature is available on it, you
can find a compilation opportunity. You save the reader the time of finding, sorting and
redefining the raw data. The product is easy to sell because the idea is in the public eye.
For example in Florida, there was a big radon scare some years back. A publisher who knew
where to look, could have picked up all kinds of data about radon, what it was, how to
detect it, what to do about it. It would have been very easy to compile a radon protection
packet, which could sell easily.
Processing Data
"Stock Market Indexes". One of my newsletters for many years consisted of readily
available data that became unique when processed in a computer program. I simply
calculated nine month moving averages of global stock market indexes. The stock market
data was readily available to all, but the compilation and processing made this data
convenient and unique.
If you have to process data, chances are others have to process it as well. If the data is the
same for everyone, then you can publish that processed data and save time and money for
everyone. If you are searching for material and can't find what you need, then research it,
find it and offer it to others.
Look at how this works. It used to take a day a month for me to process and organize that
data. I charged $99. Wouldn’t you spend $99 to save a day’s work? This gave my readers
- 17 -
a great savings and I had about one thousand of them. So I was paid $99,000 a year to do
one day’s worth of work a month. That works out to $8,250 a day. Wouldn’t you do a day’s
work for $8,250?
Tapes
"Financial Experts." One friend of mine interviews financial experts all over the world. He
simply transcribes the tapes and sells them once a month for an annual subscription. What
is your interest? Is it golfing? Record a golf pro each month. Fishing? Record a pro
fisherman each month. Making dolls? Record an expert in this field. You get to meet all
the top people in an area you love and make money too! You can do this with audio or video
tapes, though I have found that audio tapes work better as they are less expensive to
produce and are more attractive to busy people who like to listen to them in their cars.
Know your market. Audio tape business comes mostly from those who listen as they travel
in cars. I learned this the hard way when I decided to add video tapes as well as audios. No
one bought the videos. (Too much time was involved to watch them.)
Pamphlets and Brochures
"Backache Brochures." Thirty years ago, a client of Merri's developed a series of pamphlets
explaining various chiropractic disorders in very simply terms. For example "What Is Whip
Lash?" He sold them with a rack to Chiropractors, who put them in their offices for patients
to read. These little self-published items have sold year in and year out for years. They
contain solid information, but are simply 5"x7" brochures with drawings and explanations.
There are jillions of ideas of this sort that can lead to big business.
Lists
“Local Property for Sale." Go to a coffee shop in town and look around, chances are you will
find a free local real estate guide. It lists properties in the area that are for sale. This type
of list publishing is simple and can be very profitable. Shoppers Guides are another form of
list. They can be exotic or very down to earth. One client published a list of Universities
around the World that Rent Cheap Rooms to Travelers. They offered great locations, great
rooms, cheap prices...worldwide.
We watched a client of ours amass a fortune by starting guides for cities. First, there was
Sarasota. This was a simple booklet with attractions, etc. and plenty of advertising. Then
there was Naples, and on and on, until the whole state of Florida was done. There wasn't
much work to the booklets as there was plenty of generic information that could be switched
from booklet to booklet. But there were plenty of advertisers and plenty of people who
wanted to obtain these booklets. Finally, he franchised the whole operation.
Annuals
"Annual Mutual Fund Book." I started a book that listed thousands of non-U.S. mutual
funds. It was a hit, but even better, the funds kept growing, changing and moving. This
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made it necessary to produce an annual. Most people who bought the first one, bought a
new one each year.
Many lists offer opportunities for annuals. Annuals are great money makers because they
have a ready made list of buyers (getting lists of potential buyers is a key to publishing
success).
How-to Books
"How-to Invest Your IRA Overseas." Readers kept asking me, Can I invest my IRA
Overseas? Since I am not in the tax business, I asked my tax accountant to write a simple
explanation on this and put him in the publishing business!
"Needlework How-To." One of Merri's clients designed a number of needlework patterns.
She compiled them into a collection and sold them easily. By offering them through a chain
of department stores (which carried the supplies) 18,000 copies of the first book sold! After
this success, the same "housewife" created four more volumes.
Cook Books
"Local Historical Society Cookbook." A local ladies group got together. Everyone threw in
her best recipe and made a cookbook to sell as a fund raiser. They were such lousy
publishers that they lost money. Had a publisher who specialized in making cook books for
charitable organizations offered this, they would have made a profit and so would the
publisher. You could be that specialist and go to groups everywhere showing them how to
raise money. Cookbooks can be sold in a multitude of ways. They are really big winners
and are good money makers.
Other publishing ventures that can work well in a variety of ways (including being sold
through charitable organizations) are coloring books and calendars.
"Local Coloring Book." A friend created simple colorings books for communities including;
The Naples Coloring Book, The Sarasota Coloring Book, etc. She sold them to charitable
organizations as fundraisers. This creates hundreds of salesmen for your product by giving
fundraisers a new and different way to raise money.
Calendars
"The Horse Calendar." One self-publisher I met loved horses. She publishes a calendar
each year with pictures of beautiful horses and advertisements for horse riding, care and
related establishments. Calendars are another annual business, making great gifts, fund
raisers, business promotions, etc. There are many potential calendars as there are places,
events, things, hobbies. You might consider traveling to places or events of interest to
produce such a calendar.
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Institutional Give-Aways
"The History Book." Another clever self-publisher was interested in the history of her town.
She studied the architecture, searched out those old interesting details and did a great job
(while enjoying herself) on the old part of her town. She sold the book in lots of 5,000 to a
local bank as a give-away. She enjoyed enormous prestige, loved the knowledge she
gained and made quite a bit of money...year in and year out.
"Remedial Readers." A very delightful young woman with tremendous skills in teaching
found that inner city students often lagged behind because of learning disabilities. She
designed an interesting book that she knew would help these children. Instead of waiting
for it to be picked up by a publisher, she published it herself. Much to her surprise, a local
institution bought out all the copies each year, added their own advertising to the back page
and distributed them. She not only added to her income, but had the deep satisfaction of
helping others learn to read.
I could go on. I could publish a list of publishing ideas! I hope one of these thoughts may
have planted the seed for an idea that will be fun for you to publish.
One other wonderful point about publishing is that it is an ideal business for couples who
want to work together. Anyone can be a publisher, man or woman, rich or poor, educated
or illiterate. But for couples, publishing can be special. Merri and I make equal
contributions in our publishing business, enhancing each other's strengths, making up for
each other's weakness. Perhaps you and your partner will find that one is better at writing
and the other editing. There can be a satisfying balance there, and this can make the whole
project more interesting and enjoyable.
Publishing Points
Today more books are sold by mail than in the bookstores. And out of all the books sold
1/3 are in the how-to category.
The market for books through the Internet has turned the book industry upside down.
Thank Goodness! (More about this later.)
Self publishing has many rewards. First of all, you don't have to wait for someone to
publish your work. Secondly, it is possible to reap ALL the rewards of publishing.
As a self publisher, you can reap:
The
The
The
The
royalties of the author.
profits of the publisher.
markups of the distributors.
markups of the retailers.
When you self publish your inventory is almost free and it is everywhere. A publisher's real
inventory is knowledge. All he has to do is go out and pick it up.
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Publishers Give Ideas
Ideas never diminish. If I have one car and give it away, someone else has the car. I have
none. If I have one dollar and give it away, then someone else has the dollar. I have none.
If I have an idea and give it to someone, we BOTH have the idea!
This lesson has looked at how a publisher is a selector, collector and seller of knowledge and
why you do not have to write to be a publisher. We have reviewed a few types of
publications you can choose for satisfaction, fun and profit. The next lesson looks at how to
market the ideas you do choose.
Assignment #2: Look again at the list of ideas you wrote in assignment #1.
Can you add any more ideas? Think about your hobbies. List you skills or interests. This is
the process of creating your own list of what you can or want to publish.
Now take one or more of the ideas and think about and list as many ways as you can to use
this idea for:
Compilations
Processing Data
Tapes
Lists
Annuals
Cook Books
Calendars
Coloring Books
Institutional Give-Aways
Let’s again look at my healthy flea killer idea and see how these assignment would work for
me.
Compilations. There is tons of data about fleas and how to kill them. I typed the word
“fleas” into google.com and had over a million hits! The first three read:
Fleas, HYG-2081-97
Adult fleas are not only a nuisance to humans and their pets, but can cause medical
problems including flea allergy dermatitis (FAD) , tapeworms, se. ... Fleas. ...
ohioline.osu.edu/hyg-fact/2000/2081.html - 24k - Cached - Similar pages
Ridding Your Home of Fleas
... RIDDING YOUR HOME OF FLEAS. by Mike Potter, Extension Entomologist University of
Kentucky College of Agriculture. ... Essential Facts About Fleas. ...
www.uky.edu/Agriculture/ Entomology/entfacts/struct/ef602.htm - 26k - Feb 21, 2005 Cached - Similar pages
- 21 -
Fighting Fleas and Ticks
Fighting Fleas and Ticks. by Dixie Farley ... Mary scratches an ankle, then the other one,
then a leg. Then she looks down and sees why she's scratching: Fleas! ...
www.fda.gov/fdac/features/696_flea.html - 20k - Cached - Similar pages
No one has time to read a million pages so I could definitely do a survey of many sites so
and compile what they say about natural ways to kill fleas.
Processing Data. I could process all the data on the statistics of illness/death, etc. from
strong over the counter treatments of fleas, etc.
Tapes. I could interview Veterinarians, holistic healers and entomologists and tape the
interviews for the natural flea program.
Lists. Lists of holistic vets or of health stores or places that sell natural ways to kill fleas
might work.
Annuals. Annual updates on new information on the lists and compilations above could
offer continuing income.
Cook Books. How about a cookbook for healthy dogs?
Calendars. Dog of the month with ad sales for natural flea killers and other such pet items.
Coloring Books. Ditto above, color book of dogs with advertising sales.
Institutional Give-Aways. Free brochures on how to kill fleas given away at Vet offices
with advertisements attached.
Your assignment for this lesson is to add more ideas that appeal to you if they come to you.
Take one or more of the ideas and list as many ways based around the concepts above (and
any others you think up). List how you might be able to publish useful, saleable information
based on this idea.
Here is a tip that may help you in this assignment. Publishers are selectors, collectors
and sellers of knowledge. The selection process comes first. Spotting problems is the
foundation of this selection process. As you make and refine your list analyze the
underlying problem and then look at how knowledge may help solve or resolve the problem.
For example I am asking now what is the problem created by fleas and chemical flea killers.
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Lesson Three
How to Market
There were white walls and polished pine floors with net curtains stirred by a
warm, wet breeze. Katydids buzzed. The tropical humidity formed drops of sweat
mingled with salt water from a daily swim. A failed air conditioner warmed the
room and heated the ancient walnut roller chair that creaked as I leaned back and
opened the mail.
Naples, Florida on a day I'll never forget. About three weeks earlier, I decided to try a
new marketing concept. To test the idea, I mailed only 1900 letters. My risk was $950
bucks.
I’ll always remember the mail I opened that day because it pushed my return on that tiny
$950 investment over $150,000. I also knew at the moment that more would keep coming
in and also that the list I had developed meant I could earn over $150,000 extra dollars
every year for many years to come!
This lesson shows how this selling piece worked. First, I want to cover several vitally
important ideas on marketing.
Marketing Is Everything
Marketing is the most important part of publishing. In a way you can say publishing is
marketing! If you choose to do your own selling, chances are you will make more money,
easier, than in any other way.
You may even want to be involved only in the marketing portion of publishing. It is the
easiest way to make a lot of money.
The reason the marketing part of publishing is so important is simple. Selling (just one part
of marketing) normally accounts for 50% to 70% of the cost of a book. Selling is the
chancy part of
publishing, hence the part most people avoid. Good marketing makes selling easy! Those
who can market are rare. Rarity creates value. So if you gain the ability to market, you
increase your value to or as a publisher.
Publishers are mainly marketers, because the essence of marketing is understanding
people. Marketing in publishing is understanding the market of information and
entertainment buyers. It is understanding who buys what and why.
Sure, publishers have to choose editorial content-but what is their criterion in choosing?
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They choose to publish what they can sell! They choose to publish what interests people.
If you can figure out what will interest a large group of easily reached people, half of your
publishing job is done!
Sure publishers do editing, but why do they edit? They edit so their publication will be alive,
understandable and will sell!
Publishers also do typesetting, graphics, printing and a bit of legal stuff. But a major part of
every publisher’s effort is to make a book, report, course, etc. attractive and easy to sell. It
is all centered around buyers, what and why they will buy.
Let me give you an example of why marketing is such an important part of publishing.
I can produce a hot...full of information-report that contains 75 pages of really valuable
data. The printing for a thousand copies will be around $1,500.
Maybe the research and the writing will cost $5,000. Delivery may cost another 50 cents a
book. In total to research, write, print and deliver 1000 of those reports might cost $7,000.
If I sell it
for $99, I'll bring back $99,000. Doesn't that sound like a great deal?
It is, but nowhere as great as it may seem. It might cost me $50,000 in selling expenses to
get that business! All the production costs are a mere $7,000. The marketing $50,000.
The
difference is that without the $50,000 spent for selling, all I have is 1,000 reports
smoldering in warehouse. Marketing is the difference between $7,000 loss and
$42,000 profit.
If for no other reason, marketing is a vital part of publishing because it is the area where
the most money and risk is involved. Those who control the marketing, control the destiny
(or should) of a
publisher. There may be times when publishers print a book that they do not think will sell,
but needs to be written anyway. Even this choice is still essentially a marketing decision.
The publishers know that the market is not large for the book!
Often when people decide to write, they start thinking about the message of their tome.
They get caught in a myriad of details. They spend hours doing and redoing outlines. They
pour over the ideas to put in the book. They wring their thoughts over the type of paper to
print on. They study typeset alternatives. They agonize and persist over the writing,
editorial content, printing, graphics, etc. This process can take weeks, months, even years.
Yet the writer never asks, “What happens if the book is printed and no one buys it?” What
does happen if no one reads the book? No part of the universe (except perhaps the writer)
is enlightened or served in any way. All the time and all the effort is wasted because no one
properly markets the book.
When I create a book, report, newsletter or any published product, I market it first. To me
marketing is essential and is the most important part of the book. I have been under
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pressure more than once, having sold a batch books or reports that I have not yet written
(see what I mean in the case studies at the end of this lesson). This to me is better than
the stress of figuring out where to store a pile of unsold reports, books or other publications.
Don't get me wrong, I do not believe that hard selling is required to get people to
buy publications. Hard sales are not the keys to publishing success. Far from it. I
believe the opposite. Creating happy readers makes publishing successful. Finding and
creating happy readers is marketing! With good marketing, hard sales are not required.
Marketing is the reason a few popular writers make fortunes and are given huge advances
to write books. Their publishers believe that they can sell books by popular writers. Why?
Because readers were happy with their past books and want more.
Stephen King is paid millions to write fiction thrillers because his publishers have learned
through
experience that many readers want and are willing to pay for his books. The publishers of
Stephen King’s books do not have to use hard sales tactics to sell.
If marketing is not done, selling a publication may be impossible or unprofitable. Marketing
puts the reader first so the book is positioned to be of interest to some specific interest
group.
If marketing is properly done, the published product almost does not have to be sold.
Readers will buy it. Marketing is the art of making a reader WANT MORE. First he wants to
read one thing you published. Then he or she wants more books (or reports or tapes etc.)
of yours.
Focus your business to answer the question, "How can I make my readers want
more of my publications?".
There are some publishers who put everything into selling, put very little into creating the
product that satisfies the reader. Their premise is “a sucker is born every day.” They have
a point and may even make a lot of money. They may seem to succeed because they crate
the WANT through hard selling.
I believe this is the wrong approach. Such marketing plans rely on inertia to keep all but a
small part of the population from complaining about poor products and services. Such
publishers rarely get repeat sales. They have to place 50% to 80% of their expense in
selling and only 20% in production. When looked at this way, the math is pretty simple, the
place to save money is not in the production, but in the selling. If they spent a bit more on
developing good products to create satisfied, loyal readers, they could save even more
reducing the expense of hard sales.
Good marketing prevents the need for hard sales. Selling is only one of the seven steps of
marketing which are:
•
Marketing Step #1: Focusing your product.
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•
Marketing Step #2: Creating your product.
•
Marketing Step #3: Mapping paths to the market.
•
Marketing Step #4: Selling your product.
•
Marketing Step #5: Preparing your product.
•
Marketing Step #6: Delivering your product.
•
Marketing Step #7: Selling back end business.
Every aspect of publishing is in this seven step marketing process.
I view my entire publishing business as a marketing business. Every step is part of the
marketing process. Each step is aimed at making a sale and leading to further sales at the
same time. The marketing process is the first step in creating a product. It is marketing
that determines the
content, the way the book looks, its format, how it is printed, sold and delivered. Marketing
is knowing your customer and where he will be. Every step in my production and selling
process is based around that knowledge.
Marketing is such an important part of writing that I find it hard to write without first having
gone through several stages of marketing. I cannot write without first knowing to whom I
am
writing and figuring out what he needs, where he will be and what will make him happy.
Have you ever wondered why some authors who penned great classics died in penniless
obscurity?
Their works were discovered long after their death and all the fame and money from the
efforts was gained by someone else. The ones who benefited from the sweat of those
authors’ brows
were the ones who marketed those books. Many very poor, unknown but historically
famous authors lost all the fruits of their labor because they did not know how to market
their publications.
Marketing is so ingrained in my business that I write my selling piece before I actually finish
my product. Here is the process I go through to start a book.
First, I have an idea that appeals to me. I urge you not to write just for the money. Look
for ideas that are of interest and offer income potential. Let me be honest here. On
occasion I write about something just for the greenbacks. Ideas have come along that
have so much earning potential I can’t ignore them. Usually I am sorry afterwards for doing
the work.
Other times (such as when I wrote my novel the 65th Octave, I did not have a clue about the
profit potential), I write purely for fun and never have regretted this.
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But normally, there is a wonderful place where you get paid to investigate and expand on
something you find really interesting. Seek it! These places are good.
Second, I figure out who wants and will pay for that idea.
Third, I ask, "What does the reader really want that related to this idea?"
Fourth, I write a selling piece (usually a selling letter or advertisement) that offers all the
benefits of the publication. Fifth, using the selling piece as a guide, I outline the book and
start collecting data. Every step in the process is part of marketing.
Marketing is the process of understanding who wants what. Understand who he or she is,
where he or she is and how he or she can be contacted and you are well on your way to
selling your book.
My goal? To give my readers what they want and make them want more!
Central Focus of Publishing
Marketing is the central focus of publishing. Marketing is often the biggest part of a
publication’s creation. Marketing brings in the most money. Marketing is the riskiest, but
can be the most exhilarating part. It is the rarest, yet most valuable aspect. You cannot
have a bad publication if you have good marketing, because good marketing is centered on
the reader. It is ultimately readers who determine which books are good and which are bad.
It was my supreme belief and adherence to this marketing process that led me to
that warm and humid room I introduced at the beginning of this lesson. This
belief brought me to that unopened envelope that turned my tiny $950 investment
into $150,000. The
case study that follows shows how making my readers want more, created that
moment and made sure I would never, ever have to worry about money again.
Publishing Points
Gordon Burgett said it well. "Professionals sell-then write. Amateurs write, then try to sell.
When you market through the mail, it is somewhat like fishing. First, you throw out your
line, wait a bit and hopefully reel in a whole mess!"
At our house when we were in full operation in the publishing business, opening the mail
was like Christmas! We anticipated the time, then tore open the envelopes, checks and
money orders spilling out all over...along with lovely letters of enthusiasm, hope and praise.
What fun!
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Case Study
TURN $950 TO $100,000 IN THREE WEEKS OR LESS
I did not get into publishing on purpose. I slid in, just trying to financially survive in the
sales business. Much of my success has been due purely good luck and I am grateful.
Willingness to work hard and persist has helped. A bit of courage to write in the beginning
was helpful as well. But mostly success came because my business was marketing and this
business was applied to the business of writing and selling publications. This study looks at
how Merri’s and my publishing business evolved and how marketing played a vital role in
this evolution.
In the mid 1960s, I left college and began selling life insurance for Prudential Insurance
Company (this was before they became stock brokers as well). Then in the late 1960’s I
moved to Hong Kong to sell mutual funds. Being in a new place where I did not know the
geography, much of my day was given over to getting from one potential investor to
another. Traffic was a mess and many of the tall buildings did not have elevators or air
conditioning. Going from one place to another, especially on a hot day took time and effort.
If one potential buyer was on the 11th floor of a non elevator-hot building in one end of town
and the next was on the 11th floor of another hot, non elevator building at the other end of
town, I could spend over an hour and lots of sweat getting from one to the next.
One day after arriving late and drenched in sweat for an appointment, it occurred to me that
even if I could get to every potential client easily and on time, the number I could see, oneat-a-time, was limited. Plus hiking through these sweaty, old buildings wasn’t much fun!
I wanted to take advantage of what I called the “Multiple Effect”. I wanted to tell more
people my story so I started selling to groups. This thought was the beginning of my
seminar business. Through seminars I began talking to ten, twenty, even thirty people at a
time. Big savings!
Talking to groups, created other problems. Once I had given a seminar, I had to follow-up.
Very few people just visited a seminar and bought. They required another visit. Back to
pounding the streets, climbing the stairs.
This problem created my publishing career. I started a newsletter to follow my steps. “Let
the mailman do the climbing”. Results were limited. Sales were few. My focus was too
limited; my marketing not good. In retrospect, I did not even understand the word. My life
insurance training had pounded an "everyone needs one thing”, door-knocking mentality
into me.
Such a narrow focus is admirable in some ways, simple at least, but not an intelligent way
to achieve maximum potential. At that time Wall Street had tanked and few were interested
in buying U.S. mutual funds. I was making at least two errors. First, too much energy was
spent on those who had no interest. Second, too little energy was spent on seeking what
the people who attended the seminars would buy.
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The first error came from advertising in daily newspapers. This was not the right place to
reach investors. Too many readers read dailies for news other than financial, the gossip
column, obituaries, sports and such. I paid to reach those people as well as investor
oriented, so most of my ad expenditure was wasted.
It took nearly a decade for me to catch on. While speaking at a seminar for another
publisher, he asked me exactly what my focus was.
What a major event! Just hearing the words opened a new world. They created a different
level of thought for my business. Focus! I had never given it a thought. I was stunned. His
simple question instantly broadened my horizon. It quickened my thinking. Who were my
readers? What better ways were there to get products to them on a profitable basis.
Thinking about focus helped me finally define my product as “information and contacts
about
investing outside the U.S.”. My potential readers slimmed from being “anybody” to
“anybody interested in investing outside the U.S.”
This allowed me to start looking for and advertising in publications that were about
international investments and travel. Business picked up!
Understanding focus brought advertising discipline. Recognizing this focus helped me
recognize that there was a huge untapped market in the U.S. The percentage of Americans
interested in investing abroad at that time (late 70s) was small, but there were so many
wealthy people (who spoke and read English) that the potential was huge.
I still had not totally caught on. I began advertising in the WALL STREET JOURNAL. There
were results, but not enough. Few Americans had any idea that life existed beyond Wall
Street. Too much advertising money paid for reaching those who were not interested.
Sales did not cover the cost of getting the business.
Focus forced decisions. I could expand the focus of my advertising by offering my product
without mentioning its international element.
For example, instead of advertising, "Hot New Swiss Investment Information", I could have
advertised "Hot New Investment Information".
That would have been an error. Had I sold my publications with an out of focus ad, I would
have created unhappy clients. This is not a good way to build a solid business. Such
shortcuts build business with foundations of sand, not concrete.
My alternative was to advertise in publications that had more of an international focus. I did
originally trying a newsletter called “International Living”. This worked. I started building a
steady stream of customers who loved my publications. I made profits.
I wised up and stopped trying to widen my focus. This would have been a mistake as well.
First, foreign investments were my passion. I loved travel, adventure, finding new things in
far away places. Second, I stood alone selling these ideas. My uniqueness was I had the
- 29 -
experience of living and working abroad. This was rare at that time. This set me apart from
others.
This focus took me years to discover. Foreign investments made me unique. Thousands of
competitors offered U.S. investments. Had I joined the fray I would have become an alsoran.
Being unique those decades ago meant my market was thin. Instead of trying to push the
market by making it exist where it did not, I spent my marketing efforts looking for nooks
and crannies where a few more customers might exist. In this way, I was able to get
customers on a profitable basis. The ad dollars I spent brought maximum, profitable
results. The clients that bought loved the product. They rarely asked for refunds and they
bought new products as I introduced them. This is the “nooks and cranny” selling we should
look for as publishers.
This thin market had a silver lining. It helped me learn the importance of making my
readers
happy. I needed repeat sales. My readers were hungry for the knowledge I had so my best
market became those who had already bought from me.
This knowledge led to the marketing piece that produced a $100,000 return from a $950
investment. This mailing piece worked because over a number of years I had nurtured a
group of increasingly satisfied readers. Had I tried this marketing piece at the beginning of
my publishing venture, it would have failed.
The piece offered a series of seminars at a discount. This was a good deal for me and for
the readers. By this time I had been selling many books, reports and was conducting eight
seminars a year about international investing. Each seminar cost $499. This marketing piece
offered the rights to attend all eight seminars (a $4,000 value) for only $1,500. I had a list
of 1,900 people who had attended at least one of my seminars and one November I sent
each a letter with this offer. My cost for that mailing was about $950. Over 100 readers
signed up and sent in over $150,000 by January. I did this again the next year and year
after year after year.
Marketing is the process of finding publications that create happy readers and then
maximizing your relationship through added sales with these readers.
You can have the power of marketing and this power can bring a fortune to you, as you do a
lot of good!
Publishing Points
Here are a few guidelines for developing a publishing idea:
1. Choose a subject you love. You are probably getting into self-publishing because you
really want to get OUT of something else. You want to be SELF-FULFILLED so don’t just do
this for the bucks. Even if you know a subject will be hot and salable, pick something you
love as well.
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2. Choose a subject that you know thoroughly or have the ability to research with joy and
enthusiasm. Pick something in which you already have immense knowledge or an
unbounded curiosity.
3. Choose a subject interesting to you that has a clearly defined market. If you find it
interesting, who else does? What are they like? What else do they read or know?
4. Choose a subject that is already extremely focused. If you want to write a large book
such as a novel then go straight to a major publisher. Don't publish something yourself that
is broad based...even though it might be very interesting and appealing. Unless you have
the ability to make a significant investment, you probably won't be able to define the market
and thus cannot market correctly and sell. Major publishers' guidelines are outlined in the
following books and online: Writer's Market, Insider's Guide to Books, Editors, Publishers &
Agents.
An excellent example of a self-published successful book is HANG GLIDING. This narrowly
focused book on hang gliding sold over 130,000 copies and sold year in and year out. It
was chosen by a person who loved hang gliding. He either thoroughly knew or was eager to
research this subject. It was interesting to him and had a very clearly defined market and
focus. It became a hit!
Case Study
When you have an itch you gotta scratch! Yet sometimes that itch does not seem to be
geared to any particular market. There is no time as interesting and exciting as the start.
New ideas, new enthusiasm and unlimited potential makes beginnings fun. Yet few times
are as hard to market. Buyers want stability, history, endorsements and proof. How can
you sell something brand new?
Use the truth. I fortunately learned this lesson early on when I moved from Hong Kong to
London and started a new business called the Merchant Brokers Exchange. The idea was
simple. You were a broker in one part of the world trying to sell an investment, insurance,
property or whatever. There were brokers in other parts of the world doing the same thing,
but you did not know them! MBE brought you together to exchange ideas, leads, products
etc. This was a great, brand new idea. But would it work? Until there were brokers all
over the world in the exchange there was no exchange.
How in the heck could I sell those first members? I decided to sell the newness and it
worked! My initial marketing was aimed at getting the first one thousand Charter Members.
I hung the newness right up front and appealed to the brave. Once we had the first
thousand members then we had a different story to tell!
There is a pattern of how products are accepted in the market place. Researchers call it a
diffusion model. The model breaks buyers into categories, innovators, early adaptors, early
majority, late majority, skeptical mass and laggards. Good marketers understand which
segment of the market is their target. I was an innovator with MBE and my target audience
- 31 -
was the early adaptors. I marketed to small business people who were eager to grow and
get ahead. This gave them a chance to get into something exciting and new and this
appealed to them. Had I marketed to staid bankers instead (definitely part of the late
majority) the sales effort would have flopped.
Many years later after reading an economic doom and gloom book that was on the New York
Times Best Seller list, I correctly guessed that investors might want to get their money out
of the U.S. dollar. I decided to write and market a course called International Investing
Made EZ. I did some test marketing and the timing was just right. Thousands of orders
started coming in! There was one little problem. I had not yet written the course.
Remember, I write the marketing piece first. So I sold that course as a 12 month
correspondence course. That gave me a year to complete the curse one lesson a month.
Years later I read another best selling book called “Power Versus Force,” by David Hawkins.
Hawkins is an amazing guy a M.D., PhD with tons of clinical experience and he has
researched and proved how to unlock intuition to power-pack investment decisions. I knew
I had to develop a course around this called “Sharing Power”. I knew just enough about
Hawkins method to know that I did not know enough yet to develop the course. But just
with International Investing Made EZ, I knew the time was right to introduce this course.
Yet how could I create a course on a subject I had not researched. I sold the program to
beta testers. Essentially I told them I did not know what I was doing and gave the readers a
special deal to let me use them as guinea pigs. We (my readers and me) are still developing
this course and it is coming along nicely.
Everything has a beginning and many businesses fail because they cannot figure out how to
overcome this initial obstacle course. Just be who you are sell your weaknesses and look at
where you are in the diffusion curve. This can help you see the big picture which we
examine in more detail next lesson.
Case Study
Spotting the problem.
This study shows how an Australian publisher named Adam developed and marketed an eBook on how to Soothe Joint Pain Fast!
The problem he is solving is obvious. He recognizes that lots of people suffer from arthritis
and joint pain. He developed a comprehensive guide to alternative remedies, therapies and
exercises to help soothe joint pain and stiffness. And published this in the form of an e-book
backed up by a set of taped exercises.
By publishing this as an e-Book and audio program he eliminated most printing expenses,
reduced his upfront outlay. This combination also gave him two products, the e-book which
he could sell at quite a very low cost (no printing and low delivery expense), plus the tapes
provided an upgrade sale with high margins.
- 32 -
Adam organized his idea generating and research efforts by turning them into the table of
contents of the e-Book. Here are the ideas he came up with.
Table of Contents
1.
•
•
•
•
•
2.
Who Gets Arthritis? – Major factors contributing to arthritis.
• Are you at risk?
• Who is more susceptible to arthritis?
• Common symptoms to watch for
3.
•
•
•
Talking with Your Doctor – Knowing what to expect
Keeping a “Pain Record”
Questions your doctor may ask to accurately diagnose your symptoms.
Common laboratory tests
•
•
•
•
•
•
Arthritis Myths and Common Misconceptions
Should I avoid exercising?
Isn’t arthritis just something that old people get?
Is arthritis genetic?
Do I have to “just live with the pain”?
Is arthritis aggravated by cold, wet weather?
Do certain foods cause my joints to ache more?
•
•
•
•
Understanding Pain
What causes pain?
What can make the pain worsen?
What can help relieve the aching?
Why does the pain vary from one time to the next?
•
•
•
•
•
Easing the Pain – Alternative Remedies Can Help!
Information on Glucosamine and Chondroitin
Hydrotherapy
Deep Breathing and Relaxation
Hypnosis
Natural Oils & Creams
•
Helpful Foods – Remedies from Mother Nature
Types of foods that may help relieve arthritis symptoms
4.
5.
6.
7.
8.
What Is Arthritis? - A brief introduction on the most common types of arthritis.
Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA)
Osteoarthritis (OA)
Juvenile Rheumatoid Arthritis (JRA)
Gout
Lupus
Foods to Avoid – These clever culprits can sap your strength!
- 33 -
•
9.
Which foods may aggravate arthritis symptoms
Exercises That Can Help
Types of exercises
Benefits of exercise for arthritis sufferers
Starting an exercise plan
Exercises that improve strength and flexibility
Knowing when to stop
Overcoming excuses!
•
•
•
•
•
•
10.
Arthritis and Tai Chi – How this gentle Chinese practice can help ease the pain and
stiffness of arthritis.
11.
Arthritis and Yoga – Much more than just stretching, yoga can help relieve pain,
improve blood circulation and enhance your mood!
1.
•
•
•
•
Arthritis in Pets – Information on easing the suffering of your four-legged friend.
Common forms of arthritis in pets
Hip dysphasia
Holistic Care and treatment options
Using Glucosamine/Chondroitin in Dogs
2.
Current Research – Learn what scientists and researchers are currently doing to
help treat arthritis
3.
For More Information... – Contact information for government groups and
organizations working to find a cure for arthritis
4.
Helpful Resources – Arthritis cookbooks, videotapes, books, remedies and arthritic
aids to help those suffering from this debilitating disease to live a healthier, more
productive lifestyle.
5.
References – A list of the guides and websites researched for this book.
This e-book and audio program was essentially an edited compilation been inspired by
different health practitioners and sufferers of arthritis who seek natural ways to alleviate
pain.
I met Adam because one of my projects is working on publishing a healthy living magazine
(Natural Triad) and affiliated website (slowR.com). Adam’s marketing plan was clever and
inexpensive.
Adam used website search engines and typed in the words arthritis, joint pain, etc.
and looked for people who were writing about natural health. In this way he
discovered our magazine.
- 34 -
Adam sent me a book review which was smart because magazine publishers are always
looking for focused editorial content. We published this review for Adam and included his
website where readers could order. This was a neat way for him to build a reader base with
no advertising costs at all.
Adam also had another e-book “Food for Joint Pain” that included 25 recipes to soothe joint
pain which he offered as a premium to help sell his e-book and tapes. You can see Adam’s
marketing system at: www.soothejointpain.com
Adam has a good start on a successful publishing business for three reasons.
* First, he focused his idea and used his enthusiasm to create a significant amount of
information.
* Second, he organized this information in a logical way so it easily led to his table of
contents.
* Third, he created and marketed his product in an inexpensive way so he was able to place
a low entry product in the market.
Assignment #3: Focusing the Idea.
Take one of the ideas you have outlined in the first assignments then state what problem
your publication will solve.
Start to build a table of contents for this idea.
Began to choose what type (or types) of publication it might be:
Compilations
Processing Data
Tapes
Lists
Annuals
Cook Books
Calendars
Coloring Books
Institutional Give-Aways
Other
For example I have been thinking about Ma, fleas and the risk that chemical flea killers.
In the first assignment I set my plan and have been reading one source of information at
google.com each day.
My first search at google.com was for “Wendy Volhard fleas” (refer to assignment one about
how I unearthed Wendy Volhard’s book on healthy dogs). There was an immediate hit! I
learned this:
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“Apple Cider Vinegar for Dogs
“Every home with dogs should have apple cider vinegar. It's a remedy with multiple uses for
dogs: alleviating allergies, arthritis, establishing correct pH balance. Taken internally, ACV is
credited with maintaining the acid/alkaline balance of the digestive tract. Fleas, flies, ticks
and bacteria, external parasites, ring worm, fungus, staphylococcus, streptococcus,
pneumococcus, mange, etc., are unlikely to inhabit a dog whose system is acidic inside and
out.”
Whew. This idea could lead to an entire chapter. Imagine how inexpensive and safe it
would be to get rid of fleas with just apple cider vinegar.
I now have also defined the problem this publication will solve.
The problem my natural flea killer book will solve is the problem of short lived
dogs, plus disease and agony caused by fleas.
So the table of contents should begin with the problem.
I: Why don’t dogs live long? Could the answer be: Fleas?
My initial research shows such a wealth of information that I am thinking abut a compilation
and at this stage am even thinking of a name for the publication. Perhaps “Making Fleas
Flee”.
- 36 -
Lesson Four
Seeing the Big Picture
Dirty square buildings lay, like giant grimy boxes, strewn down narrow canyons of filth.
Sounds of heavy machinery buzzed through stale, hot, humid air as a Boeing 707 screeched
just overhead.
Kowloon Peninsula near Kai Tak Airport. September 1969. I was selling investments
to Indian and Pakistani factory workers and had reached one of the worst industrial areas of
the city. The massive elevator door slammed shut. Gears ground and slowly we headed
deep into the bowels of a plastics factory.
These were hot dirty places. Workers earned just $30 a month, but even so knew how to
save, living in dingy dormitories crammed in factory basements. I would visit them there,
sitting in miserable conditions, drinking thick, sweet tea laced with canned milk and talking
about how to invest. Some invested a little. Others invested a lot. They wanted a better
life, yet even here they lived grandly compared to their home.
Unknowingly these visits helped create my publishing business. I didn’t realize that I
was in the publishing process as I worked the sweat factories selling small
investments. I wish I had. I would have done a better job.
I was unknowingly gaining expertise. Understanding how these journeys into Hong Kong's
manufacturing district helped me publish a book can help you create yours.
My first book, Passport to International Profit, contained just one simple message, "Invest
outside your own country". I enhanced that message with specific investment
recommendations.
That book was possible because I had lived and worked with investments all over the world.
Yet there was more that made the book work. I saw and lived with people who had suffered
because their financial success had been tied to one economy and system that had failed.
Hong Kong was a great industrial city built on displaced immigrants who had moved from
such bad conditions that $30 a month and dingy, smelly dormitories in factory basements
seemed okay.
Expertise for that first book came from harsh experience.
Publishing is the transmission of expertise and ultimately your success will depend on the
value of the knowledge you sell.
My visits to the plastic factory taught at the gut level how important financial diversification
was. Life experiences are one great source of expertise.
- 37 -
There are also other ways to get material. This lesson reviews a step-by-step process for
gaining expertise. This is a unique process that works for me in my publishing business.
You do not have to copy this process exactly, but hopefully insights on my unique process of
refining expertise can help you develop your own unique process.
Pieces of the Puzzle
I learned publishing the hard way, through the school of hard knocks. Hopefully you will
avoid this tuition through the experiences by reviewing my trial and error. I lacked a clear
picture of the whole process when I began. It seemed like a giant puzzle.
Slowly, over years, pieces of this puzzle have fallen into five categories that form a clearer
(though far from perfect) picture. Here are these five steps.
Step #1: “What if?” Market Research. State your publishing idea in writing. Define who
would read this. Estimate how many potential readers there are. Plot where the readers
can be reached on a profitable basis. Calculate the value of the information. Don’t worry
too much whether you are right or wrong to begin. Give this your best logical thought and
gut feeling and then leave it. Your figures may or may not be correct, but this is a “what if”
process to make you really are excited about this project and want to start. If you get
bogged down here, you never get onto the next step.
Step #2: Research. If you made it past step one, start gaining sources of expertise and
information on the idea. Check the Internet, look for other publications and contact people
who have expertise on the subject. Once you feel you have this expertise, go back and redo
step one. Double check that you still want to proceed.
Step #3: Preparation. Write, edit, print (or record). Do this yourself or have others do it
for you.
Step #4: Sales. Now you have the product (or are getting it). You need to get buyers,
cash, checks and deliver the publication in a way that makes the customer want more of
your publications.
Step #5: Administration. Through this entire process you want to keep track of what is
happening. You need to check for profitability, inventory and make sure the reader is
getting his product fast! This understanding will give you a better grasp of step one in your
next publication or marketing plan.
Got the big picture? Okay let’s look in more detail.
The first step is really a marketing plan. Let me give you an example. When I decided to
write this course on publishing, I started my marketing plan by asking, "Who is my reader?"
I came up with three answers. #1: My existing readers. #2: Those interested in having a
real international business. #3: Those interested in having their own small business. This
gave me a better understanding of who I would write for and where I would advertise.
- 38 -
Next, I wrote down my publishing idea. Believe me, this short exercise saves a lot of time
and confusion. My idea for this course was “A course on how anyone can profitably build his
or her own publishing company from scratch with little or no capital, anywhere in the
world."
Note how this one sentence defines in seven ways.
#1: A course. (Keep it educational).
#2: Anyone. (Keep it simple).
#3: Profitably (Keep looking at the money).
#4: His or her (this is for gals, guys and couples).
#5: From scratch (explain everything).
#6: Little or no capital (keep it simple and inexpensive).
#7: Anywhere in the world (keep it universal).
Just this one sentence added a great deal of definition to what I must do to create
this course.
Then I asked, "Where can I reach these people?" The first answer was in my own reader
list, in the same places I advertise international investment information and in opportunity
magazines.
Next, I went to a book store and bought every opportunity magazine I could find. I found
six: New Business Opportunities, Income Opportunities, Entrepreneurial Woman,
Entrepreneur, Success and Business Opportunities, Handbook. I was sure that there were
more, but this gave me a place to start. I also figured that newspaper classifieds might
work as well. Then I calculated how many readers there were in all those publications. This
gave me an idea of my market and some places where I could get started.
This finished the start of the market research.
The second step was product research. Merri and I bought every book we could find on
writing and publishing. From the start I planned that most of the book would be based on
my and Merri's experiences, but I wanted to also glean as many ideas as possible from
other publications of this nature.
This finished the second step, gaining expertise (which was easy since I had been in this
process through trial and error for over 20 years) and since Merri's career for the past 35
years was publishing.
- 39 -
The third step was writing the course. I decided to share these duties with Merri (who has
been in the publishing business longer than I and has much more in depth experiences) so
we set aside time in our schedule to write the book.
Before we began, however, I wrote the selling piece. It provided an initial form and was
altered as the course took shape. Knowing to whom and what I was writing made the job
so much easier.
The fourth step was selling the course. The first edition was published many years (pre
Internet) years ago and I used it as an extra product to sell only to existing readers.
I wrote the selling piece, an eight page marketing letter and mailed it to all my readers,
There were about 20,000 readers then and I they were mainly oriented towards investing. I
knew that they also were very responsive to seminars as well as written reports was so I
created a program where they could get the course in writing or via a seminar. I was very
happy when the first mailing brought back nearly $200,000.
You can see the marketing piece I originally used below. Notice how it is geared towards
investors and offers both a seminar, cassette and written product:
Gary A. Scott's International Publishing Course
Dear International Friend,
Some time ago, after years of search, I found the perfect business opportunity. It was so
good that when I invested $3,600, within a month $13,706 had been returned to me. My
return on that original investment was 380% in just one month. Yet I expected (and did)
make even more!
After having enjoyed this kind of profit again and again, I have created a course that shares
nine secrets that could help you make the same type of money, with your own self sufficient
business at home.
This letter gives seven examples of the kind of returns I made in just a few months. One
investment returned 660% in a month (page two), another 835% (page three). It also tells
how to easily gain the most important things in life-freedom, friendship, financial security,
prestige, tax savings, legal protection, fun, adventure, self sufficiency, fulfillment and more
satisfaction...with very small amounts of money and time.
First, let me tell how I searched for this elusive opportunity for twenty years...how I looked
for a way to gain incredible, outlandish, unbelievable profit potential. Then I'll explain how I
finally found it and why after seven years of proof, can now share it with you. The
opportunity I sought had to be so enormously profitable that 150%, 200%, even 1,000%
return in a year was possible. But this Crown Jewel of Opportunities also had to be as safe
as any investment could be. It had to work in good times and bad and be flexible.
These were not the only standards I set for my quest. I not only wanted to find unbelievable
profit and high safety but also wanted this incredible investment to offer the ultimate tax
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shelter, something so perfect it would not even be a little bit questionable with the tax man.
It had to be so foolproof that Congress would never change it. I wanted a tax shelter so
good that it would be encouraged by the government!
I feared deep down inside that what I wanted was impossible, but nevertheless, I scoured
the world for over twenty years looking for it. I looked in Japan, Hong Kong, Korea,
Thailand, Indonesia and the Philippines. But I didn't find it in Asia. I went to the Middle East
and roamed all over Europe. I hardly missed a country. After twenty years and millions of
miles, I guess I gave up. Only then (as these things so often happen) was it that I found the
best opportunity in the world. This opportunity was not only perfect but was sitting right
here in my own back yard. I had been using it all the time, it required very little money,
could grow as fast as I wanted, offered freedom, enjoyment and allow me to live wherever I
choose! In this letter, I explain a special system (never before offered to the general public)
that makes it possible for you to create huge amounts of extra income, full or part time and
enjoy excellent profits yet have fun and enjoyment.
In this quest I never found any investment good enough to be fool proof under every sort of
circumstance. None contained the ultimate instrument of survival-flexibility. In frustration, I
changed my search. Instead of looking just at investments, I looked at the rich, how they
made and kept wealth. Most millionaires it turns out made their money in business. I
changed my quest and started looking at rich businesses. Here are five of nine secrets I
learned:
Secret #1
The business must enjoy the multiple effect. A product once created must produce profits
again and again, almost on a never-ending basis. Each investment made needs to make
huge returns.
Secret #2
The business needs to be more than its owner. It must produce income even when the
owner doesn't put in day-to-day effort. You may already be wealthy or earning a high
income. You may not even need another business or extra income, but some day you might.
One surgeon explained it this way. "I am making a fortune because peoples' lives are in my
hands. Once my hands are no longer steady, my income stops. My entire financial well
being will then be in someone else's hands!"
Secret #3
The money making system must be enjoyable and fun! Sad but true, most of us make
money for the sake of making money. Many spend their lives working, just to have a few
precious hours having fun. The most important fact I learned about making and keeping
wealth was that those who were richest absolutely loved what they were doing! Money was
of secondary importance to their effort. And as things are, this means they actually ended
up making more money!
Secret #4
The money making system must be flexible. No matter what the economy brings, your
ability to make money should work regardless of inflation, recession or even depression.
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Secret #5
The business must be able to start small, but grow large. I learned that good money
systems work for large or for small amounts and can be operated on either a full or part
time basis. Most businesses start with a learning curve. During that time it is essential they
are small. Once the lessons have been learned and the system is operating properly, then it
needs to grow for larger and larger returns.
Understanding these secrets, I realized a fantastic way to make money was the last… my
own business, international publishing! Almost anyone can make a fortune in publishing.
Publishing is ideal for making money. It fits all five secrets above. You can make a fortune in
publishing even if you never write.
Publishing is not writing! Publishing is the business that makes money from writing. You
may have read or heard about the great wealth good writers can make. Guess what?
Writers make that money from a royalty paid to them by a publisher. The royalty is normally
15% of the book's sales. Guess who makes the other 85%? Guess whose decisions make or
break the fortunes of the writer? The publisher!
It is true that some writers, like myself also publish. That's only because they have figured
out that 85% of the income from writing goes to the publisher. You too can publish, or
write, or both! International publishing can be outrageously profitable. It is possible to
double your money month after month. Below is proof from confidential results of books and
tapes I have sold.
On November 15th, I invested $1,900 in postage to mail 10,000 letters.$16,823 came back
in the mail (before I even had to pay the printer. My profit after deducting all costs was
$12,136 on the $1,900. That is a return in one month of 638%.
On December 2nd, I invested $475. It returned $3,106 in one month. On December 5th, I
invested another $475. $2,688 came back. On December 8th, another $475 brought back
$2,673 and on December 11th the same amount grossed $3,970! In each the return was
563% or better in one month! (The best return was 835% in a month.) In total those
mailings returned $12,437. These are not just luck either. April 23rd's $1,900 returned
$4,152. March 15th's $5,500 brought back $12,774.
With figures like this, you have got to ask can they be true? I guarantee they are, but
obtaining such results is not without pitfalls. In fact there are seventeen pitfalls I have
learned to avoid and it took me more than a decade of struggle to learn how to avoid these
problems. Back in 1974, I had what I thought was a good business but to be honest I could
never get ahead. I was almost penniless, in debt and living from hand to mouth. Then I
discovered a Secret on how to avoid the pitfalls. Since then our international publishing
business has brought in millions. We gained all the physical possessions we desired, more
cars (including a Bentley and Rolls Royce) than we can drive, a house on the beach and a
cabin in the mountains plus lots of money in the bank. I do not have one penny of debt and
have plenty of leisure. More important, I have fun every day! I'm doing what I love and
have learned that through publishing I can accomplish far more important goals, to gain self
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fulfillment and be of service to my community. In short I can help make myself and the
world a better place.
What do you love? Rare cars? You can make a fortune publishing information on them. Do
you prefer fine art? Or do you love beautiful jewelry, coins, gems, real estate, furs, model
railways, dolls, scientific equipment, war memorabilia, old and rare books, or whatever? Do
you prefer social subjects rather than objects? Are you concerned with the environment
problems, with crimes, war, poverty? Would you like to help wipe them out? Each of these
offers opportunity in publishing. Are you a golfer? Do you love to travel? Why not make the
kinds of money I've just mentioned publishing reports about golf courses all over the world?
Would you like to help the world be a more spiritual place, help people get along better
together? You can do something good for the world, increase your income in the process
and live wherever you please! Whatever your passion learn how you can make a fortune by
publishing information whether books, tapes or through the Internet.
Publishing can also be international if you love to travel. For example, one shrewd publisher
realized the difference between postage rates in Russia and the USA. He travelled and
mailed from there! Other publishers reap rich rewards selling information on their own
country in others and vice versa. While everyone is talking about helping our country by
buying U.S., publishers are in a position to do something about it...by selling U.S.
knowledge abroad!
A perfect example can be seen in the way I sell information to Canadians. A mailing to
Canada took a $175 investment and returned $1,155 (a 660% return) in one month! We
have Japanese, Chinese, British, Australian, European, Russian buyers and attract money to
the U.S., rather than vice versa.
Imagine what an international publishing business means to your world travel. Every trip
you take can be tax deductible! You can honestly write off every trip that is related to your
publishing business. Every journey becomes a research oriented adventure and a TAX
DEDUCTIBLE EVENT.
As a real international publisher, you'll have one of the most respected and tax protected
businesses in the country. America needs to do business abroad, and our government has
created many, many programs to encourage Americans to do business overseas. Many of
those benefits come in the form of reduced tax! Other benefits come in the form of legal
protection. Publishers are protected by the U.S. constitution. You do not need a license to
publish. There is no government watchdog nor do you have bureaucratic red tape involved
in publishing.
I created an entire system to help my readers have their own international publishing
business. This system is unique because my wife, Merri, and I are unique. We started our
publishing business together. Since we're almost recluses, we decided to do the whole
business by ourselves. We began working at home. Today, though we have tens of
thousands of buyers and have made millions, we still work at home and do not employ a
single person. Now because of a unique program arranged with International Living, you can
do the same.
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The system is contained in a course we will conduct November, 2, 3, 4, in Orlando, Florida
called, SELF-FULFILLED How to Be a Publisher.
The course teaches all you need to know on how to start and run your own publishing
business all by yourself. The first weekend of the course answers your questions and gets
your publication started!
This first weekend can put you well on your way to publishing and freedom to live wherever
you choose! It covers the five secrets I mentioned above and the secrets below:
Secret #6
How to gain 1,000% returns. See why some of the wealthiest families in the world today
come from publishing. Learn how margins can be so incredible that few would believe them.
This course that you can attend contains many case studies. Case Study #3 for example
shows one publisher who sold an idea delivered on one photocopied page. His cost was only
three cents, his selling price $12.50!
Secret #7
How to create and market your product. Learn 11 steps in creating the perfect product.
Understand how to review ideas, test focus, aim at markets. See why you don't have to
write anything if you don't want to! Learn where and how to get your data and get others to
write for you almost FREE. For example, I show how one friend, who never wanted to write
decided instead to publish on cassette tape. He started part time and built a career that
brought in millions and brought him to know some of the most interesting people in the
nation.
Learn how marketing is the key to successful publishing and how to turn pennies into dollars
with good marketing focus. Gain samples of winning marketing pieces. Learn 21 frequently
committed marketing mistakes and what to do about each.
You'll learn how to turn advertising dollars into a fortune. How to create your own ads.
When to use classifieds, space ads, direct mail or word of mouth. See how to build a PR list
and get thousands of dollars in free publicity. I even share my most Secret results on recent
mailings so you will know why sometimes you sell more units of a publication at $49 instead
of $29. I show how one couple used ads about retirement to supplement their retirement
income and get free trips all over the world.
Secret #8
How to print and fulfill. Learn how to cut your printing bill in half by asking for quotes
differently. Learn tricks of the trade, how to get the best quality at the lowest price, why to
avoid the biggest printer in town and why to avoid the franchise printers.
Secret #9
How to compute and use the Internet. With an inexpensive computer can easily run a
business from home and still have tons of time left over- even if they are computer
illiterates. Merri and I have proven this! The secrets in the course include a step-by-step
approach on what to do. And we've invited our Internet expert from England & Sweden to
speak in the course & give his secrets.
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The course contains information on how to use computers and the Internet for your publish
business. For example you will learn how I have eliminated hundreds of thousands of dollars
of printing and postage by switching much of my business onto the net. We'll unlock all the
secrets of publishing so you can have increased lasting income and reduced taxation. This
course is perfect for those with great computer skills and can help you learn how to focus
these skills into a profitable publishing business. However the course also helps computer
illiterates like myself and shows how to get your computer work done with no upfront cost.
I have created this course in an easy to understand style. Everything is explained what to
do in vivid detail. We share all, how we have done it ourselves. The course is full of
publishing ideas and case studies. You'll learn about a pilot who published a book on the
best airport cafes (suddenly all his flying became tax deductible!) You'll see how one couple
who loved an island wrote a guide on the place and made enough to buy a home on the
beach there. Another made millions with one simple legal idea. I give names, resources and
addresses of contacts in marketing, printing, plus attorneys, accountants, Internet whiz kids
who can give help. This course is not theoretical. It describes on a step-by-step basis, how
Merri and I built a million dollar international business in just 7 years and how you can do
the same.
The course is designed so you can get your own publishing business going, full or part time
right away. I'll explain how and why by sharing one other amazing experience that makes
this special offer available for you now. I am only offering this course to my readers and
never to the general public. The fee is $2,000.
Bring Someone FREE
We encourage couples because Merri and I run our business together and encourage
couples to attend, two for the price of one. You can bring your spouse or business partner
FREE!
Who is This Course For?
This course is for those who would like their own publishing business for fun and profit but
also helps business people, brokers and professionals, insurance agents and marketers who
want to enhance their existing business or build a second source of income. Publishing can
be used to shift the cost of marketing into a profit center. If you want your own full or part
time publishing business, or want to build your existing business through publishing you
should sign up for this course in Orlando, November 2-4 (Friday, Saturday and Sunday).
Here is what to do. If you're not sure whether you really want to have a publishing business,
consider the ways that such a way of living can improve your life.
This course is for individuals and couples. We include those who want their own business or
who want to have a business together or a family business. Business people or professionals
who want to add an extra profit center to their business or who want to change their
business entirely will benefit. Those who want more control over their career should attend.
Plus those who love global travel and want to turn their trips into profitable tax deductions!
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Only those who really want to publish for profit or to expand their business should sign up
for this course as it is not cheap and is not for idle curiosity. We are giving away every
business Secret we possess and expect those who use it to reap fortunes in extra income,
tax savings or expanded business. We expect they will change their whole life for the better,
gaining more fun, adventure, friends and prestige too.
There is nowhere else where you can gain such a unique network of information and help.
This enhances what you learn from the course. The contacts you make continue. We already
have more than 40 publishers signed up for the forum, so by simply signing up you'll be
connected to like-minded people world-wide who want to succeed (and help you do the
same) through publishing. After your group course your learning does not stop. We'll ask
questions, give answers, share successes and failures, examine and sort out problems,
trade tips, sources, marketing ideas, referrals and more. On that basis, the price of the
whole system (the course, the manual and the forum) for a year is an absolute bargain at
$2,000 for a couple...if you apply what you learn and get started.
If you cannot attend in person you can start the course in print form for $499 and the
publishing manual and the course on tape.
Merri and I will both teach this weekend introduction to the course (Merri's publishing
experience even outstrips mine) and we expect to spend a great deal of personal time with
each person who signs up for the whole system. We have a successful investment publishing
business with over 20,000 readers, so our time is limited. This means the numbers we can
accept at the course in Orlando must be strictly limited.
Are you interested in a publishing business? It can be small and part time mainly to gain
prestige, fun and tax benefits. It can be full fledged and rake in thousands a day. If so, this
course is an absolute bargain. You should sign up now! Our goal and guarantee is that you
will be able to run your own publishing business. We have set aside time for this one course
but do not plan to repeat it this year. Only those who sign up before we reach our limit can
attend the course.
Though the system is $2,000, you will save thousands on printing and advertising alone.
This system is so simple anyone can use it. In many cases your tax savings will be five to
ten times the cost of the system alone, plus you will learn how to gain thousands of
FREEBEES and earn hundreds of thousands a year.
My business has brought me more wealth, satisfaction, fun and friendship than I imagined
possible. It has brought so much to my life, I would like to help everyone be in publishing.
That is not possible, but I hope you are one with whom I will have the pleasure sharing this
exciting and profitable way of life!
Whether you are retired, an investor, chiropractor, doctor, dentist, professional or already
own your own business, this offers another way to make money, to turn your passion into
profit. We guarantee to share all we know to help you start and run your own publishing
business.
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Don't miss this opportunity. Sign up as soon as possible if you want to be one of the few
that shares publishing and the satisfying, profitable and exciting lifestyle it brings with Merri
and me in Orlando.
Your Friend,
Gary Scott
P.S. One section in the course shows how I turn a $950 direct mailing into $118,500 in
three weeks. I added $9,875 a month to my income! This information is worth the cost of
the course alone.
This selling piece did so well that it still forms the core of a sales piece I use to sell this
course nearly two decades later.
The fifth step is the administration which will vary widely with your particular position and
product. What we did nearly 20 years ago was very different than what we would do today.
Let’s look at what we would do today if we were just starting to sell this program now, had
never sold a product before and wanted to keep start up costs as low as we could.
I would use a computer and one single checking account to control a simple system that
dealt with four factors,
Admin.
Admin.
Admin.
Admin.
Factor
Factor
Factor
Factor
#1:
#2:
#3
#4:
Product.
Delivery.
Sales response.
Income and costs.
First, to administer the product I would store my book or report in my computer in a .doc
(word) or .pdf file. If the product were lengthy I would store it in a series of files. For
example this course has 15 lessons and each is in my computer as Pubnew1.doc,
Pubnew2.doc, etc. I would store a printout original and keep a back up copy on disk or
burn a CD.
If this were my first go at publishing, if possible (depending on graphic requirements) I
would not have the book printed, but would use the original to photocopy each copy as it is
ordered and would bind myself (more on binding, printing etc. comes in later lessons). In
fact if this was my first go at publishing I would attempt to create a publication that would
allow me to do this to avoid expensive graphics and advance printing fees etc.
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Second to administer delivery, I would print and bind what I expected a week’s worth of
orders to be and place the published product in envelopes. I would create a spread sheet
in my computer with the following columns:
Name
Address
Product ordered
Date ordered
How much paid
How paid (credit card-type, check or cash)
Date payment cleared
Date product shipped
As orders came in I would ship as fast as possible.
Third to administer sales response, I would create a file in email sending program titled
sales response. As questions came in, I would keep a copy of my response in a way that
allowed me to have a number of set responses so I could respond quickly and efficiently to
questions as possible.
Fourth to administer income and costs, I would set up one bank account for the product and
place all sales income in this account. I would pay all expenses for this account. This
makes it very easy to see whether you are making a profit or loss.
How I would start my admin and how you might start yours may be very different
based on our risk aversion feelings and what you want and do not want from
business. The above is a dead simple, yet very effective system for low volume
publishing that can allow you to provide an efficient administration with a minimal
fuss, bother or cost.
Do Your Part
Merri and I used to deal with every phase of our publishing business. This maximized our
profit, but sometimes kept us really busy. Now we often delegate or sub contract writing,
editing or the selling. As a publisher, you can choose which roles you wish to fill yourself and
which you will choose to subcontract or delegate to others. Some of our friends in the
publishing business subcontract everything. They hire marketing experts to spot and define
potential markets. They hire writers to research and write the data, editors to refine and
double check the work and artists to create layout. Some even own their own printing
presses and hire copywriters to prepare sales plans and selling pieces.
Once the publication has been created, these publishers have offices with staff that take
sales on the phones, email and in the mail. Additional staff prepare the orders, deliver the
product and keep accounts, plus maintain lists of customers and run the related (back end)
business.
On the other end of the spectrum in our business, Merri and I, chose our products, did our
own marketing. We did the research on our own. I mostly write, Merri mostly edits. I
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prepare the sales plan and write our ads and mailing pieces. In the past, we picked up the
mail together and Merri controlled our computer files. We both answered the phone. In
the beginning, we even did our own printing, preparation and mailing of the product in the
same way suggested in the administrative ideas shared above.
The only areas we subcontracted for years were printing, production, mail
preparation and phone answering when we were away from the office.
This intense activity brought enough financial stability that we could live in two very remote
quiet places and no longer feel the need to participate in all forms of publishing.
Now we mainly write and let others do the fulfillment (mostly through the Internet).
Every publisher can choose which portion of his business he wishes to do and which to be
done by employees or subcontractors.
The wonderful element about publishing is that it has such enormous flexibility that you can
choose to do just the jobs that suit your situation! You and your spouse can work together,
your children can do lots of the mailings, the entire family can feel like your publishing
venture is a project for all of them.
Your business can be anything you want it to be, depending on your wants, needs, desires,
experience and budget.
We will break the five parts of your publishing picture down even further so you can
understand the puzzle even better. With understanding, you'll be able to choose how to put
each part of your publishing puzzle together.
Publishing Points
To be an expert does not require a great education or even a college degree. All you really
need to become an expert is to research and read and listen and interview and write down
these three thoughts: WHO TO? HOW TO? WHERE TO?
What makes a great researcher is a vital interest in the subject. This is a part of your selfpublishing that you must not let someone else perform. Do the research yourself because it
is a subject of interest to you. This makes it fun, easy and enjoyable AND guarantees a
product that is well done.
How do you research?
1. Go to the bookstores and look for similar books. Look through BOOKS IN PRINT. This
will tell you every book in print on your subject.
2. Go through all the search engines on the Internet. Search and seek out information
here. But always remember that now ANYONE and EVERYONE uses the net to research. So
what you write or produce data must go way beyond an easy search on the net.
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3. Go to your library and search for the categories you need. Look in the card catalog. Ask
the librarian for help. Pour through the READERS' GUIDE TO PERIODICAL LITERATURE
looking under the category of your subjects. These large volumes contain all the listings for
magazine articles on ANY subject matter you might need.
Write government agencies for help. Some of this information is on the net and others only
cataloged. You can discover from them other books published on the subjects.
Department of Documents
USGPO
Washington, D.C.
20402
NTIS
The Department of Commerce
5255 Port Royal Rd.
Springfield, Va. 22161
Assignment
Previous assignments set goals to become experts in our publishing ideas. One
special area of expertise that is required is to know your competitors.
Your assignment in this lesson is to understand your competition. Research for
competitive publications and set up a worksheet that answers the following
questions.
Title of Publication
Who is Writer(s)
Who is Publisher
Where Sold
Cost of Publication
How Sold. (Ad, person to person, direct mail, retail, etc.)
Basis of Sales Story
Sold to Whom
Look what I found when I started this process to my “Natural Flee Fleas” idea
competition for example.
Title of Publication: The Holistic Guide for a Healthy Dog
Who is Writer(s): Wendy Volhard and Kerry Brown DVD
Who is Publisher: Wiley, John & Sons, Incorporated
Where Sold: Books stores-websites-at seminars
Cost of Publication: $11.53 to $16.59
Basis of Sales Story: Wendy Volhard developed the Natural Diet in 1973 after her
first Landseer Newfoundland. Heidi, was given only a few months to live at the age
6. Once on the Natural Diet, Heidi lived to the ripe old age of 12. Since then,
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countless dog owners have followed Wendy's Natural Diet to enhance the health,
longevity and quality of life of their dogs.
Sold to Whom Aimed at dog owners that are already fairly committed to
nonallopathic forms of health care for their pets, much of the book is based around
author Wendy Volhard's Natural Diet. The Holistic Guide for a Healthy Dog has tips
for everyone. Whether the reader is a new dog owner or an old pro at home
remedies and health food for dogs, they will gain insight into canine health as a
whole as well as their own dog’s health and well-being.
Where Sold: Volhard does five-day holistic dog care and training camps and has
taught more than 20,000 and sells books to attendees. Sold retail at
www.sitstay.com at $16.95-Amazon.com $11.53-Barnes & Noble $15.25.
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Lesson Five
Creating a Product
Gentle forests unfold in purple carpets that flow over the Blue Ridge. Emerald fur
evergreens frame white rhododendron explosions and windflowers glow lavender
and gold near the water’s edge.
Blue Ridge Mountains, North Carolina. We were driving north on a paved ribbon that
was once an ancient Indian trail. Merri and I had just finished inspecting a rustic lodge as a
site for our next seminar. We were headed to our mountain cabin.
We love the mountains and the vantage of lofty peaks, where big pictures and wide
perspectives are revealed.
Publishing is about expanding horizons. The last lesson looked at big pictures in the
business. Publishing also requires attention to finer details at every single step in the
process. Like being in the mountains, a broad overview of the forest helps navigation, but
publishers need to negotiate the valleys, meadows, brooks and forest trails as well.
The last lesson divided publishing into five broad steps, market research, product
development, preparation, sales and administration.
Product development can be look at in eleven steps.
•
Step #1: Develop the idea.
•
Step #2: Focus the idea.
•
Step #3: Focus the finance.
•
Step #4: Focus the client.
•
Step #5: Focus the market.
•
Step #6: Become an expert.
•
Step #7: Lifestyle the product.
•
Step #8: Develop data sources.
•
Step #9: Set a schedule.
•
Step #10: Create back end business.
•
Step #11: Set up silence.
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Develop the Idea
The lesson reviews the first step of product creation, to develop the idea so you can clearly
understand what you are about to sell.
To create this development, I look for seven qualities in a publishing idea. First, the idea
should be interesting. Second, it should be legal and ethical. Third, it must be attractive.
Fourth, it needs to be usable. Fifth, it has to be understandable. Sixth, timely. Seventh,
salable.
Here are questions I ask in the process of developing (or rejecting) an idea.
Quality #1: Is the idea interesting? Interesting ideas are those that are related to some
genuine fundamental aspect of life.
For example my first retail publishing idea was for U.S. investors to invest globally. I began
publishing this idea in the early 70s. The timing could not have been better. The value of
the U.S. dollar fell enormously (about 100% versus hard currencies) for 20 years (well into
the 90s). That idea was fundamentally sound and remained very interesting.
During that same time there were many attractive ideas created by that same economic
mismanagement of the U.S. government. For example I had sold a report on how U.S.
citizens could get second passports. This idea sold well. The same U.S. government
mismanagement that made the U.S. dollar fall made many citizens so unhappy they were
interested in leaving the U.S. So the idea was attractive. Yet I discovered that few readers
of the passport reports used what they read. Investing aboard was interesting. Having a
second passport was attractive. I dropped the passport business because I did not want
readers to get the idea that information I offered was useless.
Interesting is more powerful than attractive. The difference (a big one) is that interest is
the sum of all including the good and bad features. Interesting has a depth that appeals
long term. Interest fulfills deeper needs and has greater degrees of logic than attractive.
Attractive is a shorter term, though sometimes very powerful appeal which is often based on
trends, fads or misconceptions.
You can certainly cash in on attractive products. Many collectables offer good examples.
For centuries there has always been (and probably always will be) a market in collectables.
Yet many collectables are attractive only because they are in vogue. Take Beanie Babies as
an example. At one time collecting these dolls was a rage. Today? What’s a Beanie Baby?
If you had a publication about Beanie Babies a few years ago, you probably did well. Today,
a publication with this focus would face an uphill battle.
A report on how to cash in on Beanie Babies was attractive. A good report on how to cash
in on collectables will probably always be interesting.
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Coins are another example of collectables that can be attractive or interesting. The last
time I updated this publication, the U.S. mint was issuing quarters for every state. Some of
these quarters were hard to find. At that time a, “Where to find the hard to find quarters
alert” by fax or email may have appealed too many. Today, since all the quarters are easy
to find, there would not be any appeal.
Fads offer attractive publishing opportunities, but they are generally short lived.
Publications about interesting things last.
True interest can also be determined by how a business follows through on the premise of
the underlying fundamental behind its publication.
For example several newsletters published information about saving whales. This captured
my attention and I bought one of these publications and found it very attractive. The follow
through however was not interesting. The experience was like meeting a member of the
opposite sex who was very physically attractive but had nothing more than looks to offer.
After the initial moment when the heart turned over, interest was quickly lost.
When I received a marketing piece from this whale outfit, I saw an opportunity to help the
plight of whales. The fundamentals were all there. These beautiful creatures are part of our
world. They have been so attacked by whalers, pollution and loss of their food source that
their existence is in peril. My emotions were aroused. We should not lose these beautiful
creatures! Aside from feeling compassion I felt concern. The loss of whales could throw the
entire balance of nature into turmoil. I wanted to learn how to help.
The marketing piece for the newsletters was good! It showed me the problem, touched my
emotions and led me to act. I signed up, sent thirty bucks and waited for my newsletters.
All I received were a few pictures of whales plus appeals for more money. My initial
reaction was, "Why send more?” I have not received anything for my first $30. I did not
see how my contributions helped whales, so I lost interest.
Ideas sometimes need attractiveness to sell, but they also need to evoke a
genuine interest to last for the long run. A publication also has to fulfill its
promise to remain interesting.
Ask this question of each publishing idea you have. Is this a fad or is this an idea for the
long haul? Can I make the publication interesting?
My goal is to find interesting and attractive ideas that can be kept interesting. Abraham
Lincoln was right when he said, "You can't fool all the people all the time". The cost of
getting new customers you will be miles ahead if you try to always build a happy customer
base. After attracting customers with an idea's glamour, maintain their loyalty with interest.
If you can, you gain a sustained, easy, steady success in your pocketbook and it will be
easier on your nerves. More on attractive in a moment.
Quality #2: Is the idea legal and ethical? One day a letter arrived in the mail. It told
me how I could mail letters by first class U.S. mail for only 3 cents! "This is stupid," I
thought. Then I noticed the postage stamp on the envelope. It was three cents!
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This seemed interesting...especially since I spent hundreds of thousands a year on postage.
The letter promised that for twelve dollars I could get details on how to mail first class
letters for three cents.
I could not resist.
I knew this was too good to be true, but this sales story hooked me. This enhanced my
emotions about saving money (greed) that overcame my fears that I would waste
twelve bucks (fear). I sent the twelve dollars. A few days later, I got one photocopied page
telling me all I had to do was put a three cent stamp on the envelope and stamp
FIRST CLASS POSTAGE in red. The post office would normally mail it, the letter stated.
To prove his point, the letter containing this single sheet of explanation had been mailed to
me with another three cent stamp!
This publication (if you can call it that) was neither legal or ethical. The post office has a
department called Revenue Protection. It operates by spot inspection. Should one send out
lots of letters with three cent stamps on them, many will get past the revenue protection
inspectors. Only a few will be returned.
Anyone who mails a lot of these three cent letters at one time can expect returned letters
from the post office, if not a visit from a postal inspector (a government criminal
investigator).
The idea was not ethical in that it did not explain the risks that surrounded this idea. It was
also not ethical because it would eventually lead anyone who used the information
extensively to trouble. The idea was not legal because the information recommended taking
steps that broke postal fraud laws.
The idea was attractive. It would have been interesting had it worked. The idea was
theoretically profitable. It cost the mailer about five cents to mail his first letter to me and
five cents to mail his reply. He got twelve dollars for the effort! But if this publication led to
heavy civil action and or criminal action, in the long run it would not have been profitable.
Constitutional Protection
While on the subject of legality and ethics, one great benefit of a publishing business is that
it has a unique constitutional protection in the United States. For important reasons, most
authorities at almost any level cannot control what you wish to publish. It is hard to get
into trouble publishing anything, as long as you maintain ethics.
Had the publisher in that marketing example above written a report on why the government
should return to three cent postage and urged Americans to mail letters with only three
cents and had clearly outlined the risks and rewards of doing so, there is little the
authorities could have done to stop this publisher. The publisher of this idea could actually
have made the idea ethical and legal.
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Being legal and ethical are important marketing factors. In today's publishing atmosphere,
the largest expense most publishers incur is getting new customers. The most powerful
marketing tool any writer or publisher has is the ability to deliver a product that creates
happy, repeat customers! Offering and delivering products that don't work or get
readers in trouble does not accomplish this goal.
Quality #3: Is the idea attractive? The idea you market has to attract first time buyers.
It does not have to be pretty and does not have to be pleasant. But it must attract.
Attractiveness is the quality that first enhances emotions one way or the other. The
emotions can be good. They can be bad. They can even be ugly.
For example an ad (not mine) that worked well read, "I am mad as hell at the government
for cheating us-Here is how we can get even."
This heading is neither pretty or pleasant. If our government is cheating us, this is bad. Yet,
we want to know. Knowing how to get even is also attractive to many people. So the
headline worked well. Ugly is emotional. Fear, greed, love, compassion, nostalgia, anger
are emotional.
Most purchases have an element of emotion involved. In the long run, customers need
more. Anyone who buys a Rolls Royce has a little emotion (probably pride). They are
showing how rich and powerful they are. Yet if the car does not run, they will not remain
interested in owning that car for long.
This is also true of publications as well. Readers need to find a publication interesting (it
holds their interest) to be satisfied in the long term, but how do you get them reading to
begin? Attractiveness is the quality that gets a potential reader to drop everything, read a
sales story, grab a check book or credit card and buy your publication.
Quality #4: Is the idea usable? The idea you publish has to fill some need on the part of
your reader. This is a vital key to gaining repeat customers. The idea has to work for the
readers.
Take an example of a publication for golfers. A publication about golfing on various courses
all over the world, has to, in some way, benefit the reader.
The publication can be entertaining. Since almost no one uses all the data they read, there
is an element of entertainment in every publication. The pleasure of reading about the golf
courses may be enough to make the publication useful. If the main goal is to give
satisfaction through description, then a publication with lots of commentary and good
illustrative writing may work well.
On the other hand if the goal is showing “how to get to unique golf courses worldwide where
the public can play” (convenience) a simple list of names, short descriptions, telephone
numbers and perhaps maps may be enough.
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This golf publication may do more. It might help the reader know how to get lower scores
on these courses (pride). It may show times at the courses when green fees are reduced
(savings).
What is important is that you understand what use your reader will get and gear the
publication (content and selling) for it.
Understanding this and what your reader wants is the beginning of focus. Focus
is a key ingredient to successful publishing and it will be covered in this course many
times in many ways. Whenever I sit down and start to create a new product, I ask, "How is
my reader going to use this data?" Then I try to match everything in the creation of the
publication around the answer.
I once talked to a publisher who wrote a newsletter about private islands for sale. The
writer told me he had a great life, researching and visiting these islands. He also enjoyed
some great tax deductions.
He told me that only a few subscribers actually bought an island. Most readers however
simply enjoyed reading and dreaming about private islands. The dream was the main
usefulness of this publication.
Quality #5: Is the idea understandable? Some years ago the book "A Brief History Of
Time" was on the NEW YORK TIMES best selling book list for over a year. It has been
labeled one of the most purchased-least read books of all time. I noticed that the author's
next books did not sell as well to the general public. The book was about Quantum science
and was just too complicated.
When examining an idea and whether it offers good publishing potential, ask, "Can this data
be presented in a manner that is understandable for my target market?" "A Brief History in
Time" shows that being interesting can sell a book, but if it is not understandable, you won’t
build repeat business.
Match the data to the potential reader. Can the reader understand what the publication
contains? If the answer is no, the publication may be out of focus.
On each of our ventures-reports, books, newsletters or seminars-Merri and I define who our
potential buyers will be. We picture a specific person we KNOW will want our product. We
try to know this person well and plan the entire focus around him. This technique can help
you focus further. Don't use a made up person, use a real person you know. Then every
step along the publishing process keep asking, will this person understand the marketing
story and the publication.
Quality #6: Is the idea timely? A successful publication is tuned to the times. Anyone
marketing a publication that is far ahead of or behind its time must be careful in marketing.
An excellent book that every publisher should read is “The Tipping Point” by Malcolm
Gladwell. Page 196 and 197 reviews how products or innovations move through a
population. Sociologists call their studies of this motion diffusion models. The book points
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out that one of the most famous diffusion studies was an analysis of the acceptance of a
new superior corn seed in the Midwest. 259 farmers were in the study. The first two years
of the study only a few farmers used the new seed. The next year 16 adopted this seed.
The next year 21 more farmers switched. The next year 36 came on board, then 61 more in
the next season. Then 46, 36, 14 and in the last year three were added which meant that
all the farmers had switched except two.
The first group that started with the corn are called Innovators. The second are the Early
Adapters. These are opinion leaders who are thoughtful and after analysis followed the
Innovators. Their success leads to the next group the Early Majority who infected the Late
Majority. Finally following behind were the Deliberate and the Skeptical Mass. The Laggards
fell into place only at the end of the innovation. The most successful publications from a
financial point of view are usually those that find information from Innovators and Early
Adaptors and sell it onto the Early and Late Majorities.
Whatever segment of the market you wish to reach, keep the diffusion model in mind and
try to understand how timing will affect your publication.
I suffered from failing to understand this phenomenon in my business in the mid 70s when
writing for the U.S. market about how to invest internationally. As an American, who had
lived abroad for nearly a decade, this idea was obvious. However, it ran contrary to public
thought.
I had a heck of a time finding customers. Many potential readers were not ready for this
idea, no matter how interesting and attractive. I was ahead of my time, but did not know it.
I did not understand the diffusion model so when I should have been looking for Early
Adaptors, I tried to reach the Majority.
Twenty years later most U.S. investors were ready. The Late Majority and Deliberates were
20 years late for the good stuff, but publications on this subject sold better than when the
idea had much greater potential. If I had been more experienced, I would have sold those
reports differently.
Now the idea of international investing is so common that local stockbrokers give free talks
and lunches on the subject so we have had to adapt. Now I know about the diffusion model
better constantly change, update, recreate and especially innovate.
Being ahead of the times is not bad. Not recognizing you are ahead of the times is bad. If
you are publishing pioneering efforts realize that you deal in thin markets. Use nook and
cranny selling.
Today, I use ideas ahead of their times as client builders. I use them as products that
readers can later say, "He really knew what he was talking about!" When I understand that
a product is out of focus with common thought, I exercise prudence in the way I sell it. I
won't spend too much money on advertising until I find a clear way to reach the few who
are ready to learn the idea. (See more about this on the case study below.)
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Being a pioneer is great. Being a leader with new ideas ahead of the times is great.
Publishing is one of the best ways to introduce new ideas to society. Publishing new radical
ideas can improve an entire society, can make things better and can be one of the greatest
thrills in business.
Going broke however is not thrilling, so publish materials that are timely or understand what
you are doing when you make your choice to be a leader or laggard.
I salute all who have something important to say. Say it by all means, but first calculate
the risk and know who you are saying it to.
Quality #7: Is the idea salable? In publishing, marketing is a very important part of
success. You can have the most timely important, usable, interesting, easy-to-apply idea in
the world, but if you cannot sell it, you won't make much money. Defining your market and
deciding how to sell your idea to the market in the correct way should be an integral part of
the product creation.
I learned this lesson early on while pioneering the idea of investing abroad in the U.S. As
mentioned above, my idea was right but ahead of its time. Because I was out of sync with
most of the nation, my selling continually failed. This did not mean that the idea couldn't be
sold. It meant I was not delivering the sales story to enough of the right people. My
problem was that I was selling to the wrong people.
There was only a small number of Americans who ready to buy overseas investments. They
needed and wanted the information I had, but I had to focus on that small percentage.
When I used mainstream media to market my publications I was paying way too much for
my advertising because I was reaching way too many people who were not interested.
The product was not salable (on a profitable basis) until I learned avenues that led me
closer to the small percentage of Americans who were interested. I had to understand my
customer better so I could put my message in places that reached the potential readers.
This process of understanding customer is called focus and it is a vital key to publishing
success.
Focus constitutes four of the eleven product creating steps and are: focusing the idea,
the finance, the client and the market.
We review these four steps in the next lesson.
Case Study
How to Adapt Timing
An eight page report on how to lose weight that I published gives an example of
how timing can impact a publication
One of Merri’s and my businesses serves publishers of free magazines about healthy living
that are distributed in large cities. Our job is to help create editorial content and enhance
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their revenues through merchandising. We always look for products and services that will
sell though these publications. In this process I stumbled across an idea that was so simple
and so usable it seemed almost unbelievable. In fact I feared it would be hard to sell
because it seemed so good because it was slightly ahead of its time.
However, this was so powerful I believed a huge number of readers would be interested.
The product was needed (obesity is a huge problem in America), immensely interesting,
attractive, totally usable, legal and ethical. My task was to figure our how to focus the
usability so the product would be saleable.
Earlier in this lesson I wrote:
“Today, I use ideas that I believe are ahead of their times as client builders. I use them as
products that readers can later say, "He really knew what he was talking about!" When I
understand that a product is out of focus with common thought, I exercise prudence in the
way I sell it. I won't spend too much money on advertising until I find a clear way to reach
the few who are ready to learn the idea.”
To understand this better, first read the report:
The Power in Key Muscles
Dusk fought a horizon of darkening finery in oranges and gold. Twilight brushed fading light
with amber memories on quiet waters below. The patina of eventide’s weariness descended
on the day.
Ganges Harbour, Salt Springs Island, British Columbia, Canada. Our anticipation grew
as we approached just as the sun slipped beneath the sea. The pilot had pushed the little
float plane high, despite its full load and awkward pontoons, so we could see a wider spread
of the spectacular sunset below. Golden light muted the darkening Pacific islands. Then we
descended with the sun onto a sheltered bay. Merri and I were taking this trip to be treated
by and to learn from Dr. Raam Pandey. He is a master of deep healing routines called
Kayakalpa and he is acknowledged worldwide.
When we learn from such masters or take treatments, we observe closely. Often this brings
understanding of more than what is being said or done. We try to connect dots with
knowledge that has been given by other masters we have met. This is our way of seeking
truth and this is how we stumbled across the secret of key muscles that we share
here.
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Purification
One practice that permeates every healing ritual we have enjoyed, studied or heard is
purification. We have visited and studied many, Andeans, Amazonians, Tibetans, Indians,
Mayans, Sufis and found that all have one form of internal cleansing or another. Kayakalpa
is one of the best and deepest cleansings we have experienced and our goal on the trip to
Salt Springs was to be cleansed for rejuvenation.
However we gained more. Dr. Pandey’s introduction of three exercises for retaining energy
and vigor was the first of seven coincidences that has improved our health for more than a
decade. Just recently we discovered (and share here) why.
The three exercises taught by Dr. Pandey stimulated key muscles in the buttocks, abdomen,
chest and mouth. We did not know then, that this is a foundation for weight loss. This
report outlines how we discovered this.
Nor did we know that a coincidence would occur while staying at Salt Springs (it took us
more than ten years to discover this fact). This first coincidence occurred when we
stumbled across a book in the island’s health food store. That book, The Secret of the Ring
Muscles by Paula Garbourg was the second coincidence that began a series of crossroads.
We unknowingly picked up a simple, easy to use philosopher’s stone that would lead to
better health. I did not know it then because I did not read that ring muscle book until a
decade later.
We spent over a month living with Dr. Pandey. Then we had to rush back to our
business and catch-up work buried us. The book on ring muscles was quietly
slipped unread on the bookshelf and forgotten. The importance of what we
learned with Dr. Pandey did not arise until later.
The revelation finally came in the way so many important things do, through a totally
mundane act. Merri and I conduct Wellness Weekends at our Blue Ridge Farm. These
events are get-togethers where we share ideas about how to live better and immerse
ourselves in what we learn. Days begin with country walks and gentle exercise. We share
how to prepare delicious organic food and live as the shamans, masters and healers who
have taught us.
Before each course I prepare, thinking about new ideas to share. This preparation created
the coincidence. I was standing barefoot in our office, searching through our bookshelves to
stimulate ideas. The unopened and ten year unread copy of the book, The Secret of the
Ring Muscles by Paula Garbourg fell from the shelf onto my foot.
Pain sat me down. Ouch! The book lay before me, opened at page eight. I picked it up and
read: “Sphincters are ring-shaped muscles that surround the various orifices of the body
both internal and external. They include the muscles around the eyes, the nostrils, the
mouth, the anus, the urethra and the genitals. In a healthy body, all the sphincters work
together, contracting and relaxing simultaneously.
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“As they do so, they activate the respiratory system, the gastrointestinal system, the
circulatory system, the lymphatic system, the musculoskeletal system and the urogenital
system. In fact the ring muscles are ultimately responsible for putting all the other muscles
and all the organs of the body to work.”
The coincidences came crashing together. Dr. Pandey’s exercises were all tied to
the ring muscles!
This explained why exercising the lower muscles was so important to our balance and
health.
But how did this tie to exercising the lungs, I wondered? I did not have to read far to find
out. Page twelve explains the connection when it says:
“The functioning of the sphincters is closely linked to the functioning of other bodily
structures. Two of the most important of these are the diaphragms and loredoses (the
inward curvature of the spine at the lower back and neck). Through these structures the
ring muscles affect the health of the entire body; conversely the health and proper
functioning of these structures also affects the coordinated activity of the sphincters. All the
diaphragms should work in unison with the opening and closing of the sphincters. Lordoses
affect and in turn are affected by conditions elsewhere in the body, especially the sphincter
muscles.”
Bam! There it was. The connection, between the butt, abdomen and chest. Opening
pathways in these areas exercises the sphincters in the abdomen, chest and neck. When
you exercise sphincters, health and energy miracles can occur!
The purpose of this report is not to sell you on sphincter exercises or health system. In fact
its aim is not to sell you on anything. There are only two simple goals.
First, this report introduces the idea that ring muscles may be important to health. Pursue
this idea only if you desire.
Garbourg’s book says that sphincter exercises can reduce or even eliminate asthma, bedwetting, childbirth, menstruation, nursing, depression, developmental disabilities, flat feet,
hemorrhoids, prolapse of the uterus, tremors, varicose veins, nervous tics, excessive
sweating and even more. These exercises can even help stop smoking, Garbourg states.
“The oral sphincters of smokers are usually slack. To compensate for adequate muscle
tone, the smoker puts a cigarette in his or her mouth and the lips close around it and
contract. This contraction of the lips increases the smokers’ ability to concentrate. He or
she is able to think more clearly and work better because the oral sphincter is making all the
other sphincters work.”
The report’s second goal is to show how one enormously simple exercise can help more than
half of the modern world. We have a common problem, obesity.
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Garbourg’s book shows on page 41 one simple exercise for better digestion and
weight control. This is so simple yet so powerful because it only has to do with the way
you chew. Here is what she says:
“Chewing should be done with the lips closed, but with the oral cavity open as wide as
possible. When chewing is done correctly the lower sphincters and intestines can be felt
working in rhythm and causing the abdomen to contract.”
There you have it, exercise of the neck, chest, abdomen, all the way down to the
butt, just by chewing differently.
The book also says: “If you open your jaw widely enough while chewing, there is no need
to chew your food a great deal before swallowing it.”
It also says it is important to chew on both sides of the mouth. Overeating is a very
common problem today and this is fundamentally a result of poor muscle tone of the oral
sphincter.
The book explains that when our sphincter muscles are out of balance the body tries to
restore them by chewing. Thus what seems to be the body’s craving for food can be the
body’s craving for proper exercise of the sphincters.
Garbourg explains: “With proper exercise the sphincters return to normal operation and
there is no longer a demand for more food than the body needs. It is possible to eat enough
without the fear of getting fat. All you have to do is to make sure to open your jaws widely
enough with each chew to bring all the sphincters muscles into action. This will reduce your
body’s craving to eat and will also enable your body to burn up more calories more
efficiently.
Can weight control be as simple as just chewing food in a slightly different way?
This has definitely helped me. Upon using the technique described in Garbourg’s
book, my weight dropped and I have been able to reduce the amount of discipline
required to not snack in mornings and afternoons. More important I feel better,
more relaxed and at ease.
Will this technique work for you? I do not know, but it might and what does it cost to try?
We are all different. Your weight challenges may be created by different imbalances than
mine. However you have little to lose by finding out! The knowledge here has been given
free. No extra time, no special uniform, no extra space, place, coach or expense of any kind
is required to see.
My experience is that proper exercise of sphincter muscles brings profound improvements in
one’s heath, well being and energy. I feel blessed that seven coincidences helped me
discover this fact. I had to travel the world and spend years to gain these techniques that
improve my health.
All you have to do is chew!
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If what we have shared in this report makes sense, I recommend trying this chewing
technique. If it improves your life, study more from the contacts below.
At the least you may gain a valuable aid in weight control. Even better, this report may be
the first coincidence in your life that leads to a better, healthier life.
Merri and I hope so!
Gary & Merri Scott have written and published 36 books and hundreds of reports on
international investing for over 23,000 readers in 82 countries. Their success in helping
investors prosper economically concerned them when they saw that readers gained wealth
but not happiness or health. The Scott’s quest to help readers have everlasting wealth,
beyond the balance sheet led them to live and study for years with great healing masters
from the Amazon, Andes, China, India, Middle East, Tibet and the Western world. Gary is a
member of the Knights Hospitaller.
Contacts
The Secret of the Ring Muscles, Healing Yourself through Sphincter Exercise.
Paula Garbourg Institute, Tel: 954-394-5770 Fax: Number 954-337-0820
Email:[email protected] After immigrating from Germany to Israel in 1936, Paula Garbourg
contracted a serious debilitating disease. Four physicians said she would spend the rest of
her life in a wheelchair. Unwilling to accept this Paula drew on her early training in opera
and ballet dancing, and began a rigorous, physical experiment trying to find a cure for her
condition. She developed a set of exercises based on relationships between muscles and
organs and recovered. This led to physical therapy of ring muscles. These exercises have
been recognized to help almost any common ailment, Asthma, Arthritis, Backache,
Headache, Depression, or any other ailment for over 50 years by Israel’s HMO's and
insurance companies. More is at the website www.rings.net
Wellness Weekends at Merrily Farms. International Service Center, Tel: 336-3841122. Fax: 336-384-1577. Email: [email protected] Clean air, pure water and
fresh food are important medicines. Gary & Merri Scott conduct three and six day Wellness
Weekends in 2004 that reduce stress and lose weight. Live and learn longevity secrets
gleaned by the Scotts from years spent with vaidyas and pundits of India, Sufi masters,
Chinese herbalists, Tibetan monks and Andean shamans and yatchaks.
Learning better weight control is one of seven benefits you gain. Discover how to have
delicious food with less calories, how to mix protein, carbohydrates and fats for energy and
weight loss. Get recipes with easy-to-buy-at-the-supermarket foods. For example, enjoy
breakfasts of protein balanced pancakes and organic panela-canela syrup. Every ingredient
is inexpensive, easily obtainable yet this delicious sweet meal fills as it turns up the calorie
burning process. Eating secrets include easy ways to identify your body type so you can
customize your diet and know when and what to eat in the right way. You can see the
facilities at www.littlehorsecreek.com
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The gist of this report is you can lose weight by just chewing differently! Can you
believe it? I suspected many readers would not. This solution seemed too simple and was
ahead of its time because few Western institutions or attitudes were thinking in this
direction. This seemed to be an idea just for a few Early Adaptor alternative thinkers. This
fact was complicated because the weight loss market is so huge and so competitive! How do
I reach the few Early Adaptors through the competitive noise created by Atkins, South
Beach, Zone, Low Fat, Grapefruit and myriad of diet fads?
So instead of selling this report and perhaps suffer a backlash when readers received it and
thought, “that’s all he has to share? What a rip-off”, I decided to give this report away and
use it to sell a bigger ticket item.
In short we used the report as a list builder and filter to reach the small market of
alternative thinkers who might want to try such ideas.
I placed the editorial type ad below in several magazines:
“Three Ancient Secrets of Weight Loss Revealed…FREE
A Tibetan-Andean coincidence uncovers three ancient ways to reduce waist size,
tone muscles and eliminate flab.
One group of muscles that control life's fundamental process are largely ignored in the
modern world. Yet ancient healers knew they could gently be exercised to enhance
breathing, digestion, circulation, elimination, and all muscular motion.
They are called Key Muscles and are in every part of our body. These Key Muscles are so
important that simply exercising just one of them while eating can help you trim up and lose
weight.
Recently a coincidence unveiled the importance of these muscles. Consultants who help
publish this magazine visited a remote island to live and study with a Kayakalpa healing
master who specializes in an Indian-Tibetan purification and healing technique.
A coincidence led to the discovery of how simple exercises of Key Muscles can reduce weight
and improve health in most remarkable ways.
These exercises are perfectly designed for the modern world because they can be done
while driving, watching TV, working on your computer or even while sitting down and eating
a meal.
Obesity has caused such immense damage on society that as a community service we are
distributing a report about these exercises through this magazine’s website free.
Weight loss is only one benefit that can be gained. You learn in the report how simple
exercise of these muscles can help reduce or even eliminate asthma, bed wetting,
depression, flat feet, hemorrhoids, tremors, varicose veins and can even help to stop
smoking.
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You can obtain the report at no charge and without any obligation: [email protected]
If you do not have a computer or access to email you can obtain the printed report
by sending $4.99 for postage and handling to International Service Center, Inc.,
157 Little Horse Path, Lansing N.C. 28643.”
Here was my thinking. First, a free report would require less ad space, thus keeping costs
down. Second, the report itself could them become an extended marketing piece for the
higher priced Wellness Weekends. Third, the report gave me plenty of space to give lots of
credible contacts. Note in the report how much detail I included about Paula Garbourg. My
hope was that these names would appeal to the alternative thinkers, because this book was
popular among this segment of the market. This would in turn make the weight loss idea
more credible and would enhance the Wellness Weekend.
My goals were. #1: Get names of potential readers interested in weight loss. #2: Give
readers information that could later establish me as an authority on this subject if this idea
catches on they heard from me first!). #3: Sell Wellness Weekends.
Case Study
Product Creation Process and Price Testing
A marketing piece I used to shift market segments can help highlight the
importance of continual testing and show how the product creation process works.
I had been marketing reports about international investing for eight years and perceived
that my market was expanding. My goal was shifting from reaching Early Adaptors to
attracting first time readers interested in international investing from main stream readers
of investment advice.
I was aware that eight years earlier I had stumbled onto a selling piece that attracted Early
Adaptors interested in investing globally. The piece offered three reports that were titled
“How to turn $250 into $51,888”. That title was sure attractive!
Since this original selling piece had worked well with early Adaptors, I decided to try a new
format to this same idea and market information on investments that might be more
acceptable to the main stream.
I felt that the idea of investing abroad might be ready for the early majority. When I had
started marketing the ideal of global investment almost no U.S. institution knew about or
supported that idea. Wall Street and only Wall Street reigned supreme! Since then, over
the eight years, most investors had become aware of overseas investments. Most
stockbrokers had begun selling some type of overseas investments. Many newspapers had
started to show foreign currency parities. Most media were now talking about how high
overseas markets had risen (as Wall Street fell).
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I began this transition by looking at the international investment ideas that interested me
most. I was interested in Investment Trusts which were British closed mutual funds that
could often be bought at huge discounts. I discovered that many good investment
managers were now interested. These investments had recently risen dramatically so they
were attractive. Yet they had a 100 year successful track record as well, so they were also
interesting. I chose this idea for one report.
Unit Trusts were British open end mutual funds and were another almost unknown
investment in the U.S. at that time. I liked the idea of writing about mutual funds because
they provided common ground for the main stream investor. Everyone knew what a
mutual fund was. All the report had to do was raise their consciousness one level to British
mutual funds. This was a good place to convert an established idea (mutual funds) to a new
idea (at that time) in international investing.
The third report called The Slingshot was about collateral loans (I called it The Borrow LowDeposit High concept). This was a new idea for U.S. investors but I believed it would be
accepted because these loans were offered by major non U.S. banks that I felt the now
more globally aware U.S. investor would know. This was a really attractive idea as well
because at that time investors could borrow from these banks at 4% and reinvest at 12%
and even more! Gain there was a long term track record of success that made the idea
usable and interesting also.
There were other factors that affected my thinking.
Printing costs in the eight years I had been publishing had skyrocketed. In the beginning a
report of 210 pages had cost me about $1.98 to print 1000. II was always looking for a ten
to one mark up. So I could sell those reports at $19 and be happy. Actually I sold them for
$29.
By this time that same report cost nearly $6.00! Postage had increased as well. To offer a
big report at a ten to one margin would require that I sell it at $59. I worried that this was
a big jump from the $29 price that had worked so well (or so I thought).
I wanted to include three reports, but needed to keep the cost down, so I decided to make
each report a shorter, simple primer.
Short reports posed a problem. If they were too short, the readers would not feel satisfied.
I solved this by putting lots of names and addresses that would otherwise cost a
reader much more to obtain. With names and addresses and current, powerful "Can Use
Now" information these three reports were worth much more than $29.
Also to further alleviate the risk of readers saying, "Is this all I get for $29?" I gave them a
free ticket for one introductory day of my $499 three day international investing seminars.
This was worth $179 and gave the whole package a perceived value of $366. That created
enormous selling power on a $29 sales price.
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I hoped adding the free seminar would make the deal so compelling readers would find it
hard to resist. Since I had sold many thousands of these courses at $499, this made the
deal really attractive. (Plus I expected it would bring in more seminar attendees).
However, adding the free day to a course also creates a sales objection. Potential buyers
might not buy the package because they can't come to a course in a place or on a date I
offer. To overcome that objection, I added the feature that they could have this one
day course on cassette tape.
This created another problem. Since I put on courses anyway, the cost of recording the
first day was nil. However, the cost of handling the reproduction and postage ran about
$15. This was overcome by giving the course on tape free but by charging postage
and handling of $14.95.
This piece accomplished all of my goals. It gave me an attractive product to offer to new
"Never heard of Gary Scott" readers. It also led the reader to buy another of my
publications. In the reports themselves, there is a mention of other books, plus the ticket
worth a free one day seminar gave the reader the option to attend the full three day course
at a $179 discount instead. Once they come to a seminar, chances are they would become
a reader forever!
See how the product fits together every step of the way?
#1: The idea was salable. It was based on a known, successful formula that employed a
tested selling piece. The sales piece offered so much for so little that the biggest objection
to overcome was "How can it be true?" The idea offered overwhelming benefits in relation
to the cost of the product. It timed a new idea (invest abroad) to the mainstream but was
connected to a well established theme (mutual funds).
#2: I added some unique endorsement appeal. I put the names of three of British
mutual funds that were in the report right in the marketing piece. This added enormous
extra believability to the sales piece and killed three other birds with the same stone.
Adding those endorsements set a theme that I was giving readers, hot off-the-press usable
data with real names and addresses that would help readers take action.
Second, the endorsements showed the reader that I was willing to take an extra step and
give before I received. Most marketing pieces tantalize, promise, and suggest that a lot will
be given, but never gives the reader a thing unless they buy the product.
I tried to give more than expected. In this piece, I start this process right from the
beginning and tried to set myself aside from the crowd.
Third, this whole plan helped me find readers suited to my focus. Ideally, the marketing
piece and the three reports would incite the reader to buy my newsletters as well as the
reports. Plus the free one day seminar, in person or on tape, I hoped would lead to
additional seminar sales.
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All this worked because I gave something of real value in the beginning.
happy with the first effort, they would not buy again.
If buyers were not
Testing
The second part of this study is examining the power of testing. I view every marketing
piece I use as a test. In this case, I wanted to see if the $29 price was still the best
introductory price I could use.
Many years had passed since my $29 price had worked so well and I wondered if the market
had adjusted to a higher price. So I tested two prices for these three reports, $29 and $49.
I tested mailed 10,000 letters that were identical, except in one way. Half of them offered a
price of $29, half $49. I added one other feature. On the last page of the marketing piece, I
added one paragraph that offered my WORLD REPORTS for $99 and gave away the three
reports and one day seminar. This little extra paragraph and the test gave me some
interesting results.
I mailed 10,000 letters to two lists. Each list got 2,500 at $29 and 2,500 pieces at $49.
Look at the results from two lists at the $29 and $49 price.
List
List
List
List
List
Price
#1
#1
#2
#2
$29
$49
$29
$49
Number
2,500
2,500
2,500
2,500
Cost
$99
$29
$49
$1,250
$1,250
$1,250
$1,250
22
21
24
13
34
40
22
25
$3,164
$4,989
$2,845
$3,112
What that test showed was that readers were as willing to spend $49 as $29. Even more
important, those who read the $49 marketing piece were more likely to upgrade to the
$99 price. I deduced three facts from this (which I continued to test). First, the particular
lists I chose were willing to send larger amounts of money than $49. Second, $49 is
a much stronger inducement for a $99 sale than $29. Third, lowering this offering price by
$20 will not attract many more sales. It will reduce income.
I also learned that list #1 is better than list number #2. I have since seen evidence that $79
works even better than $49 and continue test this whole idea in more detail.
In the end, this piece not only became an attractive marketing piece for getting new
customers but has become a good income earner for me as well.
To me a test should be a valid marketing piece aimed at making money. In this case, my
total "at risk money" was about $5,000. My return was $14,110 or 182% (in about 6 weeks
though 80% came in over the first three weeks). If I can mail this package once a month
and continue to earn at this rate, I earn 2,184% per annum on my capital at risk!
Another point worth mentioning on this return is that I express the return in dollars per
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1,000 pieces mailed. Or dollars return per dollars spent on advertising...not a percent
return on the pieces mailed. In this case, the return is $1,411 per 1000 mailed.
The percent return does not matter. The amount you make versus the amount of your
selling and production costs are what matter. If I mail a one page letter to 10,000 people
and sell a product for $100,000 that costs me $100 to produce, do you think I care if I make
a lousy one thousandth of a percent return? I would have made $10,000 per thousand
mailed! My profit would be about $94,900. It is the PROFIT that matters!
Use the creative process for every product. Test and aim to always to make profits on your
mail. Do this and you will have an ever growing store of knowledge and money. These are
essentials for your publishing company's success.
Assignment
Start to create a check list to develop your idea. Start with the seven elements of the first of
the 11 steps in the development process. Take a look at mine below.
Idea Check List
Step #1: Develop the idea. Develop the idea of a compilation of information on how to kill
fleas in ways that is safe for dogs.
* Interesting aspects of idea: Many pet lovers are discovering that modern medicine is
not always holistic and that some dog food and medicine are not good for their pets and can
shorten their lives. Search for stories and support that commonly used pet products are
harmful. Search for information on harm caused by fleas.
* Legal ethical aspects: Look for disclaimers used in other holistic publications about pets
and look for books and reports written by Vets and scientists that will support and give
credibility the ideas of the compilation
* Attractive aspects: Look for articles and ideas about the benefits of healthy long lived
pets.
* Usable aspects: Get costs of regular flea killers and application data. Ditto for natural
ways to kill fleas.
* Understandable aspects: Research words and names of chemicals used to kill fleas and
find out common easy to understand words that can be used to explain these and the
damage they do. Look for scientific words that explain why natural flea killers work and find
common powerful emotive words for these as well.
* Timely aspects: Look for current stories in media about risks to pets or humans about
fleas and or stories about longevity of pets or dangers of chemical flea killers.
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* Salable aspects: Research easy ways to obtain natural flea killers. Look at marketing
stories used by other competitive products.
•
Step #2:
Focus the format.
•
Step #3:
Focus the finance.
•
Step #4:
Focus the client.
•
Step #5:
Focus the market.
•
Step #6:
Become an expert.
•
Step #7:
Lifestyle the product.
•
Step #8:
Develop data sources.
•
Step #9:
Set a schedule.
•
Step #10: Create back end business.
•
Step #11: Set up silence.
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Lesson Six
How to Focus a Product
Saltwater sands dazzle white on an empty beach. The turquoise water breaks on a
clear reef and sings of gentle surf and cooling breezes while swaying palms paint
moments of beauty over azure skies.
The Dominican Republic, Rio San Juan. For years, one of Merri's and my favorite haunts
was Cabarete Beach in the Dominican Republic. This little (at that time) village was about
20 minutes from Puerto Plata airport and pretty much represented the end of what Yankees
called real civilization on the Dominican Republic's north coast. There were not many road
signs once you get past Sosua so we measured distance in numbers of minutes from our
condo in Cabarete.
Forty-five minutes was quite a long ways into the bush. Merri and I were sitting on an
empty crescent-shaped, white, sandy beach. The land was for sale at an asking price
$8,000 an acre. Somebody will get a bargain. We were researching a report that we wrote
about this island. We made enough off that report to buy our condo and a bit more!
As we sat in the cool gentle breeze, it was hard to tell we were working! We were and our
Dominican Report made a nice return because we got the focus right. We have done this on
numerous occasions turning many places we loved to visit or live into a report. We have
published a British Isles Report, A Swiss Property Report, an Eastern Europe Report, an Isle
of Man Report, A Dominican Republic Report and several Ecuador-Land of the Sun Reports
and are now working on a St. Thomas Opportunity Report. In each case we turned the
expense of spending time in places we love into a profitable exercise. Tough job, cruising
round the warm Caribbean waters. May take me the whole winter to get that work done!
Publishing has supported our love affair with global travel because we have understood and
always worked carefully on developing a good focus in each of our publishing projects. To
focus is to balance and concentrate the energies of the writer with the editor, publisher and
reader.
Success in publishing requires focus. In the 11 step product development process
focusing the idea, finance, client and market are the second through fifth steps of the 11
step product development process.
This publishing process combines four convergent (and sometimes conflicting) goals into
one smooth conclusion that (hopefully) satisfies all.
Most writers are artists trying to paint a picture with words. Often they are in their right
brain and their goal is to paint some picture they see via words. They want to just get this
darn thing off their chest and out into the open. At times they don’t care if the picture
communicates to anyone but themselves or not.
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The editor checks the writer’s image for accuracy and recolors (or cleans up muddy colors)
so the message is easily communicated to the reader.
The publisher's job is to sell the darn publication and make a buck in the process. Often he
does not care if the book says anything or not. He is just looking at the bottom line.
Finally, the reader wants to convert what the writer has written, editor has refined, and
publisher has marketed into his own image in a way that entertains or adds value to his or
her life.
Self publishers who fill all three publishing roles require extra discipline to create a product
that fits their reader's needs. I am fortunate. My wife, Merri, is an excellent editor/writer
with years of experience. She has edited over a thousand writers. Yet we spend so much
time together, have so many common goals, experiences and think so alike, that we have to
exercise great discipline to be sure that we fill all three roles (writer, editor and publisher) in
our publishing business. When we fail to do so, our publications suffer in one of several
ways.
If the writer in us takes over, our publications can lose the focus of their content. This is
usually my fault when I become too enthusiastic and write about what interests me rather
than what interests our readers.
Or worse we may write interesting stuff, but in such a way that our reader doesn't
understand what is written. You can see this happen when popular writers become so
successful that they can bully their publishers a bit. They’ll come out with a book that seems
off base. You are amazed to see that critics love it. For a minute you feel you have missed
something and then that the book's sales are a flop. You did not miss anything at all.
Critical acclaim is not a measure of popular or financial success. In such instances writers
and the critics get trapped in the form. They forget the function! Readers rarely forget the
function. They want to be entertained or informed.
Artists (including writers) produce art for art's sake. Publishing should, however, (if you are
interested in profits) always be art for the reader's sake! The job of the writer is to find and
try new things. The job of the editor is to look at old things that have worked in the past. A
good publication blends these functions. The editor's job is to make sure that the writer
never forgets his reader. The editor is the guardian of the reader's interests. Too much
writer and the book may get ahead of its time. Too much editor the book can become stilted
or stale.
If the editor takes over totally, the publication loses its artistic or financial focus. The editor
might technically over strive, make the book too perfect and in the process, cut out flair or
make the process too expensive. The publication might become perfection, totally correct
and wonderfully polished-but lack luster and or lose money.
If the publisher takes over, the publications might lose reader focus in another way. They
might be driven only toward making a quick buck, become chintzy, make great profits and
lose readers because too little is given for too high a price.
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A successful publication requires a balance between the three forces. To assure this
happens in our business, Merri and I have a product creation system that balances these
forces. There are four steps in this process:
* #1: We focus the format.
* #2: We focus the reader.
* #3: We focus the market.
* #4: We focus the finance.
Before covering these four areas of focus in detail, there is a fifth less intangible but equally
important focus. I'll cover it in more detail as the seventh step in product creation (to
lifestyle the product), but it is so important, I want to touch on it here.
Merri and I are always careful when we focus a potential publication to be sure that it is also
focused with our personal goals. We are only interested in publishing information on things
that interest us. In other words, we won't do a project just for the money. We won't do a
project just for prestige. We like to write about what we do and we like to do what we
enjoy.
There are a couple of reasons for this. You could say we like to earn from our play.
Publishing lets us do this by focusing our efforts on things we love.
Dealing in our passions is limiting in one way (we can only do so many things). Yet is has
certainly helped us be successful in another way. Readers buy publications because they
have passions. When you deal in your passions this puts you in touch with the passion and
automatically helps you understand why others will buy your publication. You can
understand their love through understanding yours.
There are some traps here though. If you become overwhelmed by a passion, it is easy to
lose perspective. It is easy to think that your passion belongs to everyone! It is easy to let
the writer in you dominate. Passion is the creative force. Your love of a subject may throw
you headlong into a never ending study. You may learn and learn, enjoy and enjoy, write
and write, but never produce.
If your passion takes over the publishing and editorial balance, the publication may become
too esoteric, too passionate. It may forget the reader.
I once observed this error in the wine business. A wine connoisseur I knew decided to open
a shop because he loved wine. He loved the finest wines. To make his shop better, he
studied (and partook of) the finest wines deeply. He stocked them, tried them, talked about
them.
He opened his shop and offered only the best wines regardless of price. He ignored the
reality that most wine drinkers want cheap table wine. The wine expert goes broke while
Gallo makes another million!
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We can delve as much as we want in the fields we love most, but in the process must also
produce publications our readers love. Focusing helps gain this balance.
Take the Dominican Republic Report, Merri and I wrote as an example. We
loved the place, the warm sun, friendly people, relaxed lifestyle, beautiful scenery,
warm winds, cool sea and empty beaches.
But we have balanced this love with the fact that such a report appeals to a market of
investors, a market of retirees and of travelers. We investigate areas of this island that will
appeal to each of these markets. The report made sense and sold well because the D.R. was
very close to the U.S. and prices when we wrote this report were at bargain basement
levels.
This meant that when we are in the Dominican Republic, we were looking at real estate,
seeing what it cost, finding out how to buy it, the state of the market, etc. We were looking
for names and addresses of real estate brokers, attorneys and any other contacts that could
help the investment oriented part of our readers. We were also looking for retirement data
for those who might want to live there, plus we looked for information usable by tourists
from the U.S. looking for a good holiday.
This meant that the DR book had to fit the focus for all three markets (investors, retirees
and U.S. tourists). We disciplined what we did in this tropical country for the sake of our
readers and their needs. We sold a lot of those reports and none of the readers created a
riot so I hope the job was well done.
If we had loved most lying in cool breezes swaying in hammocks, we could have written "A
Guide to the Best Trees for Hanging Hammocks in the Dominican Republic. That publication
might struggle because of a thin market, or perhaps not. There are lots of people who love
to lie in hammocks! It would have failed had I tried to market it to my list because my
readers are investors and those who want to move around see, do. I think.
Let me throw in one brief note. We will cover creating “back end” products later, but one
huge income producer for our business has been seminars that we develop from our country
reports. When we successfully create a report that interests people in a country or an
aspect of a country (ie. real estate or the stock market or some business opportunity), the
readers want to go there. So the sale of a successful report builds a ready made list of
potential buyers. More on this later.
Our publishing report in the Dominican Republic was balanced between our love of the
Dominican Republic and the four publishing focal points.
Just because we wanted to create this report did not mean we just plowed ahead. When
first we had the idea the U.S. economy was in the doldrums. The second home market in
the U.S. had shrunk drastically. So had tourism. We waited to launch this project when
economics had picked up.
The first business focal point is the publication's format.
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Focusing format is fairly easy once you have been through the product development
system covered in the previous chapter. Once these seven steps have been reviewed
(seeing if the idea is interesting, legal/ethical, attractive, usable, understandable and
salable), all that needs deciding is what the product will say and how the idea will be
delivered. The method of delivery is the format.
The idea's format can be in a book, report, magazine, letter, list, tape, fax, website or
electronic file. The form of delivery depends on the idea and on what YOU want to focus on.
Understanding how Merri and I focused another of our reports, “Borrow Low- Deposit High”
might help clarify the process.
The idea behind “Borrow Low-Deposit High” is that investors can use European
investment banks to leverage their investments. It is normal for these banks to lend
money to investors who in turn invest in liquid assets that are held at the lending bank.
The bank lends in many currencies. The difference in interest rates of these currencies
creates the opportunity Borrow Low-Deposit High technique
Every currency has fluctuating interest rates. An investor may be able to borrow U.S.
dollars at 3% and redeposit the loan in Australian dollars for 7% (this is just an example
not real rates for today).
When I researched this report, I felt the idea was interesting, legal, ethical, attractive,
usable, understandable, timely and salable. To start focusing the product I had to first
focus my client.
Obviously “Borrow Low-Deposit High” was an idea for investors. But which kind of
investor? I had learned through hard experience that advertising international
investments through general U.S financial publications reached too few international
investors for the cost.
The focus here was on readers interested in international investing
Currency markets and interest rates changed continually. For the idea to be conveyed
properly, it needed to contain fresh up-to-date information. This fact suggested that the
format should be a report.
Reports are generally more current, up-to-date and short term than a book and the
format for this report was influenced by the shifting nature of the idea.
A great strength in this idea was that everyone knew about this outside the U.S. The
borrowing concept was common knowledge in Europe. As an American who had lived
abroad for many years, I knew that investors all over the world used this technique, but not
Americans. This made the idea powerful because I could show examples of success that
others achieved with this idea over many years.
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Though I was an innovator in the U.S., the late majority had already accepted this idea in
Europe. This also meant I could show that many huge, totally reliable institutions who are
expert in this technique as real everyday ways to invest.
Understanding and knowing the format I would use, helped me to take the second
step and focus my reader.
I was able to eliminate large institutional investors as readers. These investors already
knew the technique. I eliminated average Wall Street investors. They still were not ready to
invest abroad at that time (this has changed since).
I also eliminated very small investors. The technique required at least a $15,000
investment, usually more, so investors needed proper diversification. Readers needed
$25,000 or more that they could afford to lose before they should consider using this
technique.
I was able to define my initial reader as an individual investor with $25,000 or more who
was interested in investing internationally.
I focused my reader by choosing one real and very specific person I knew. I looked within
my circle of contacts and found just one person who seemed a perfect reader for this
report. I thought about the publication, the idea, the format and how this person could use
and benefit from it.
I wrote the report and the selling piece (and developed the back end) for that one person.
I focused all my energy on pleasing that one person.
Once done, I took the third step and focused my market. The market is the place
where I find my readers. I use my same single reader and try understanding all I can
about him or her. Where does he or she go? Where can he go? What does (or can) he
read? What does he or she like, etc? I define my market by finding out as much as
possible about one single person.
Once I started selling the report, I studied the buyers and improved my understanding of
who my readers were. The initial definition was aimed at getting started.
In the “Borrow Low-Deposit High” example, my reader had a $100,000 + portfolio, loved to
travel globally and read many magazines and newsletters about international travel and
investments. So the first place I advertised was in newsletters and magazines that
featured international investments and travel. The international focus was more important
than the investing focus. In other words I chose publications that featured international
travel before I chose publications that were about investing.
The idea for this report began because I loved and used the idea myself. Then I examined
whether others would love the idea, and if so, how others would love the idea.
Then I refined how to best deliver the idea and chose one person who could use this idea.
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The fourth refinement was to ask, “Can the publication make money?”
I looked at the market. What was the price of similar products? Did I have some reason
to charge more or less than others? I looked for unique features that allowed me to
charge a profitable price that would leave the reader feeling good about the deal.
If the publication had many competitors I might have decided to price my report on a
comparable basis. I try to find unique ideas because they can be sold on their merits
instead of being priced around similar products
I calculated production-delivery costs and selling expenses. I normally want a ten times
mark-up to assure a profit and my costs at that time were $2.90 to print and deliver the
report. This meant I could sell it profitably for $29.
That report worked well and I earned hundreds of thousands of dollars from it.
There are other factors to consider when you price your publication such as whether the sale
of the publication will lead to additional sales of a back end product?
I begin my financial focus looking for a ten times mark up, but then I add in these other
factors as I progress in my thinking.
I then look at a worse case scenario. How much time and money are required to produce
the product and test market the idea? If I am not willing to take the effort and risk for the
worst case scenario, I'll drop the project. I ask if it will it be worth my time and effort?
Hope that every publication will be a best seller. Plan to live, survive and make
money if the publication sells less than you hope.
I aim to make money even from my flops. I usually start with a target of 1,000
publications sold in a yearly sales target. How much would I make in a year if I sold 1,000
reports.
In the case of “Borrow Low-Deposit High”, which ran 80 printed pages, my production costs
were about $2.00. Delivery was another $.91. I budgeted $10,000 for marketing and
$2,000 to print 1,000 books. My total outlay with delivery will be about $12,900. If I sell
the report at $29, I gross $29,000 and have an after sales profit of $16,100 to apply toward
operations. This was barely acceptable. In many cases it would not be acceptable.
Deciding whether these finances are right requires some additional thinking.
If my goal had partly been to turn travel and research in Europe into tax deductible
expenses, I would have taken this into account. The low return might have been more
acceptable if creating the book satisfied some other need.
If my goal was to get to know bankers better and I felt that writing the report would make
me interesting to bankers, I would add this to the factors taken into account. If I love travel
to Europe and wanted a reason to go, this would be noted as well. If profit was my main
goal, I would look to see if I could sell the report for $49!
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Without a competitor in the market, I can simply increase the price to $49. ($39 is not as
good a price. For some reason totally beyond my comprehension when I have tested $39
versus $49, more readers will pay $49 than $39.) Go figure?
There may be other reasons to keep the price low. If I think readers will feel shortchanged at the $49 price, but I want to get that idea out there for other than monetary
reasons, I might risk profitability and use the lower price.
I would look at the market to see if the report could demand a $49 price and still have
satisfied customers. At $49, my return under my worst case scenario is $26,000 or a 200%
return on total investment at risk. This is attractive considering that it is a worst case
scenario.
If my marketing efforts work out, I might sell 2,000 copies at $49, or about eight times my
money a risk.
So normally my price of choice would be $49. However, in the Borrow Low - Deposit High
example, I sold the report for $29. This was a product I used to attract new readers. At
that time I believed new readers would hesitate to pay $49, so I kept the price low. Later
as the market changed, I raised the price.
While on the subject of finance, let’s review the term "money at risk". This is the maximum
amount a publisher might spend if everything turns out worst. Rarely will the publisher lay
out this total amount in cash. Publishers do not need to use all their "money at risk"
because initial sales usually generate cash flow that covers future marketing.
Publishers with tight budgets should carry out a cash flow analysis as well as a profit
analysis.
To do this, figure out what it will cost to print the publication. The Borrow Low example
above showed that to print 1,000 reports of 80 pages cost $2,000 at the time it was printed.
Mailing 5,000 direct mail selling pieces at that time cost around $2,500.
Altogether in that example it cost about $4,500 in up front cash to get such a report off the
ground. If the marketing piece was successful, it might pull in $7,500 or more. That
amount would have then been ready to reinvest in more marketing. I might never have
needed more than $4,500. That was cash flow. Profit wise I had budgeted $10,000 to start
marketing with 20,000 mail pieces, so I was putting $12,000 money at risk. The only other
cost that affected profitability was the delivery cost.
When cash is tight there are a variety of ways to keep the cash outflow reduced. For
example, sell the book before you print. In this case, at $49, you only need 50 sales to
generate enough cash to print the book. Thus you could start with $2,500 for your initial
selling! Be sure not to spend the money that comes in, however. Do not even process the
credit card orders or cash the checks until you have enough cash to print. If your selling
piece flops, you will want to be in position to return the checks if you decide not to print the
book.
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You can also use less expensive selling techniques such as classified adverting. More on this
in later lessons.
You can print one off orders. This reduces profitability, but reduces “money at risk.” Many is
the time when we have sold a report with limited potential, that we printed one off. For
example if it costs $2.00 for a printer to print 1,000 reports at a time, it may cost $5 to
print ten at a time at Kinkos, Office Depot, Staples or similar copy shops. This reduces
profitability by three dollars per report but avoids the risk of laying out the $2,000 initial
print run.
Your financial formula can depend on many factors. Do you have multiple publications to
sell or just one? What are the costs of alternative publications? What are your goals and
reasons for publishing? How high are your overheads? What are you own personal goals,
both financially and personally? Plus how much experience do you have?
Years ago I frequented a local coffee shop and one day noticed a book for sale by a
local writer who was obviously self-publishing. This appeared to be an interesting
book about local politics that focused on corruption in the sheriff’s department. It ran 150
type set pages. I do not know if it sold well, but know that the publisher lost money
because his price for the book was only $4.99! However, he might have found some sort of
satisfaction in writing this book!
It was impossible to typeset and perfect bind a 150 page book for $4.99, much less sell it at
that price. This writer may have gotten everything right except his finances.
When I conduct publishing courses, I am amazed that the two most common errors
potential publishers make fall in the finance category. First, they usually expect their
marketing to work better than it will. Second, their financial plan is such that even if
marketing works spectacularly well, they will lose money. Not good!
Please, know (preferably in writing), how much you will make in a worst, medium and best
case scenario. Then by all means go for the best! Just be ready in case (for whatever
reason) you miss your upper goals.
I always figure out how much I make if the publication hits the jackpot. Good
stuff does happen and knowing the huge potential makes a venture more exciting!
Having been through the focus process, I understand what I am writing, for whom I am
writing, where I will reach that person and how much money I will make if all my
calculations are correct and the publishing gods decide to bless their favors upon me.
But I also know what will happen if I send out a stinker. Most of us do some time.
Focus your idea, reader, market and finances. This done, you now can proceed, you are
ready for the fun part. Now you can complete the last five steps of your product creation
cycle. Learn how next lesson.
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Publishing Points
With careful planning and some luck, you may have a hit overnight with your first publishing
effort. Then again you may not. Self-publishing is a form of investing investment. You get
better with experience. The big hit and huge sales may take time to learn. But meantime, if
you are focused in areas you enjoy, you'll have fun, enrich your life and others.
Remember your labor enjoys the multiple effect. You do the steps, create the product,
publish and then the rewards and dividends come in for years...whether you work again or
not!
Here are some good ways to keep initial costs low:
#1. Publish in limited quantities. Print ten copies at a time on a good photocopy
machine or at a copy shop. Collate and bind yourself or do it as a family activity on the
dining room table. For years, our family worked together on projects. These became quality
times! We enjoyed the mutual sense of accomplishment and each other immensely. We
often paid the kids a piece of the action so they would get excited about lots of orders
coming in. They would track sales coming in every day and want to know how sales were.
When our youngest was unable to read, the only job she desired was to stick on labels. We
couldn't allow her to do this, of course, because she could not tell if they were upside down
or not. Finally, she hit upon the idea of using the zip code as an idea. These were all
numbers and they were on the bottom. She could, at last, label and gained an enormous
sense of independence that I am sure helped her become the independent business woman
she now is (she runs one of the most successful drama schools in England with a 6 figure
income at 24!)
# 2. Bind the books or reports yourself. You can buy a GBC Binder for a few hundred
dollars. This type of binder lets you punch the pages and fits them easily into a spiral plastic
coil for the binding. This is fun work for children. Another approach is to buy already
punched three ring paper and put your publication into a three ring binder.
When we first wrote the ISLE OF MAN REPORT, we did not have it printed. We thought that
this was a very, very narrow market and would have some appeal but not to warrant a
printing. We decided to offer this in our catalog and through a few classifieds (costing
around $79 each). We planned to photocopy the book, collate and hand bind it ourselves.
Much to our surprise, it sold 1600 copies the first two months at $49 each. $78,400
poured in! We quickly rushed to the printers.
# 3. As orders come in, use that seed money to print your first copies in the
amount you will need in six months. You can certainly handprint, collate and bind your
first reports. Print as many as you need, so you don't make your first buyers wait.
We believe in keeping costs down until you can identify a strong market. You really cannot
print yourself as cheaply as at a printer. However, you can price a job without collating and
binding to save money. One big difference is that you can print on an as needed basis
eliminating the upfront costs.
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Resource for inexpensive printing supplies
Dick Blick Art Materials
1-800-447-8192 for free catalog.
P.O. Box 1267
Galesburg, Ill. 61401
http://www.dickblick.com/
Quill Office products
1-800-789-1331 for phone orders.
P.O. Box 94080
Palatine, IL 60094-4080
www.quill.com
Assignment
Continue your check list for the next four steps of the 11 step development
process. Work on numbers two through four of the process. Take a look at how my
check list for the “Flee Flea Report” is developing below to get an idea.
Be sure to price your product carefully.
Let’s outline how I did this for the “Flee Flea Report.”
First, I called three suppliers. You will see why it is always important to get at least three
quotes in a moment.
I have decided that this report is going to run 49 pages or 25 pages front and back. Since I
am here on our North Carolina farm as I am creating this report I called the two closest
Staples (Wilksboro and Boone NC and Kinkos in Greensboro NC).
I wanted printing and binding costs on 100 reports, 49 pages which will require 25 sheets of
paper printed front and back. I did not mention reports, books or anything of this nature as
some printers price differently for each. I asked for a quote on 100 copies of 25 pages each
printed front and back.
Staples Wilksboro quoted:
Printing $375
Binding with front and back cover $228
Kinkos Greensboro quoted:
Printing $230
Binding with front and back cover $459
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Staples Boone quoted:
Printing $403
Binding with front and back covers $249
So Kinkos Greenboro gets my printing business but not the binding. I checked out binding
machines www.quill.com and www.officeworld.com instead. There I found binding machines
that ranged in prices for $59 to $3,000.
I settled on a GBC ThermaBind 250 T100 thermal binder at $179 which was described in the
Quill online catalog as below:
“Product Details
•
No punching, tapes or fasteners needed
•
Specially designed cooling slot allows documents to cool faster
•
Unique curved support slot keeps documents upright during binding cycle
•
Size: 8-1/2Hx16-1/2Wx6"D
•
Includes manufacturer's 1-year limited warranty
Create clean, slick and sophisticated presentations in seconds. A single touch of the bind
button activates the built-in binding. Fully automatic visual and audio indicators provide
simple and error-free operation. Binder size guide guarantees the correct size cover for
every document.”
Merri and I will do our own binding in our spare time for these first copies to keep our cost
down. The binder is less than binding costs so we’ll write this off on the first 100 copies at
$200 or 2.00 apiece for binding.
So our total cost for the printing and bonding of the first 100 reports is $430 or $4.30 cents
apiece. Based on the ten times mark up I like to have these reports need to sell at $44 plus
shipping each.
You can see how I incorporated this price into my data checklist
Idea Check List
* Step #1: Develop the idea of a compilation on ways to kill fleas in ways that are safe for
dogs.
Interesting aspects of idea: Many pet lovers are discovering that modern medicine is not
always holistic and that some dog food and medicine are not good for their pets and can
shorten their lives. Search for stories and support that commonly used pet products are
harmful. Search for information on harm caused by fleas.
Legal ethical aspects: Look for disclaimers used in other holistic publications
about pets and look for books and reports written by Vets and scientists that will
support and give credibility the ideas of the compilation
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Attractive aspects: Look for articles and ideas about the benefits of healthy Long-lived pets.
Usable aspects: Get costs of regular flea killers and application data. Ditto for natural ways
to kill fleas.
Understandable aspects: Research words and names of chemicals used to kill fleas and find
out common easy to understand words that can be used to explain these and the damage
they do. Look for scientific words that explain why natural flea killers work and find common
powerful emotive words for these as well.
Timely aspects; Look for current stories in media about risks to pets or humans about fleas
and or stories about longevity of pets or dangers of chemical flea killers.
Salable aspects: Research easy ways to obtain natural flea killers.
* Step #2: Focus the format. My format is a report in print form, black on white and
without graphics and will consist of 49 pages printed front and back on 25 pieces of paper
plus a front and back cover page. The report will also be available on my website in a PDF
file. (More on the Internet which is usually the best bet to offer in a later chapter.)
* Step #3: Focus the finance. The report costs $4.30 per piece to print 100. My initial
risk will be $430. If sold at $44 plus shipping each I will gross $4,400 or and earn $4,070
after paying for printing and binding costs.
* Step #4: Focus the client. The client must be a person who has disposable income
that he or she is willing to spend on their pets and must have an interest in natural living
and holistic health.
* Step #5: Focus the market. People who use holistic veterinarians, dog trainers and
who buy food for their pets in health food stores. There are a number of holistic dog trainers
and vets in the area. There is a FREE magazine, “Natural” given away at health food stores
and other holistic doctors, chiropractors, massage therapists and such. The clients of these
dog trainers, vets and readers of this magazine will be my original market.
* Step #6: Become an expert.
* Step #7: Lifestyle the product.
* Step #8: Develop data sources.
* Step #9: Set a schedule.
* Step #10: Create back end business.
* Step #11: Set up silence.
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Lesson Seven
How to Finish a Creation
Relentless energy rumbles against the dawn and vines of emerald green. A verdant Kudzu
hangs in lush tapestry across narrow roads and frames the city that awakens below.
Hong Kong Mid-levels, #5 Bowen Road. At this apartment began a strip of asphalt that
ran for miles through lush jungles and away from the crowds and sea.
I lived there for years and ran or walked its many miles each morning. This enigma of a
road was quiet at dawn, lush, cool and green, yet just below slept one of the busiest,
noisiest most bustling cities in the world.
Years ago, I walked down this road in the early dawn, broke and unemployed, wondering
"What should I do?" The company I worked for had just gone bust stranding me thousands
of miles from my home in Portland. I was a young man. Life laid before me an open book.
Yet I was broke, in debt and worried.
In the Creator’s nurturing way help came indirectly that very day as I read a local
newspaper, The South China Morning Post. In it was a story about a famous and very
rich shipping magnate (as I recall this was Y.K. Pao). The article explained how and why he
had started in the shipping business. His reasoning was that he loved to travel. He
believed that everyone should work in a vocation they loved. Shipping allowed him to travel
the world.
Following your heart and publishing subjects that are interesting and exciting to you will
help you succeed for many reasons. First, it will help you sell. People buy based on
emotion and when you are emotional about the subject you publish, this emotion becomes
contagious. Selling is normally a publisher's largest expense. When you increase the
effectiveness of your selling, your profits soar.
You are also likely to dig deeper into a subject when you are interested. This deep
digging is important to the process of creating a unique product for a well known
group of readers.
Let’s look at how to dig!
Getting Action
Once you know what publication you want to create, it is time to put your plan into action.
Step #6: Become an expert.
Whether you do it yourself or hire the research for your publication, your expertise will have
a powerful impact on long term success.
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My goal for over the past decades has been to prepare and sell the expertise I gained about
international investing. I had derived information from living and traveling abroad for
decades. I continued to travel, to find new interesting data and to slowly build my business
by selling the data I collect to interested readers.
I have an acquaintance that had a different idea. He just wanted to have a big publishing
company. To him, the idea was not everything. He published products in the same field as
I, but he was not interested in the ideas, except to make money. (Nothing wrong with
that.) However, what was wrong was his view of developing or hire real expertise. He
created great looking marketing pieces. He threw his main efforts into selling and creating
polished looking products at very low prices. Yet the information was thin!
The man was a sales genuine and he created dozens of monthly newsletters and many,
many books and reports. He hired a wide range of writers, linked them to editors through a
complex computer system and arranged for the best copywriters to sell these products. He
brought in millions, while I was bringing in thousands.
His publications remained weak in expertise. He spent top selling dollars to get
his customers. He had high refunds and few of his buyers bought from him again.
His overheads were huge. Few experts in the industry recommended his products.
His profit sagged so he cut more product quality corners. He offered products he
could not deliver. He expanded into other fields to find customers that were not
familiar with his products. The products he delivered grew further out of focus
from the products his selling pieces offered.
He was in a cycle of self destruction. Costs rose more as refunds gained momentum. Cash
flow became crucial. Bills became unpaid. Suppliers cut him off. He went broke.
This is why the slow steady approach is best. Why did this man get out of the business?
Things grew so bad that even his ability to sell millions of dollars worth of publications could
not solve them! How would you like to have multi-million dollar problems?
How much of his income could he keep? This man created so much ill will that he became
embroiled in lawsuits and government investigations. All his earnings ended up in his
lawyers' pockets instead of his. How much fun is this? How much good does this do in
society?
Many businesses often forget that every transaction should make everyone happy. Ones
that do not leave a residue of unhappiness or anger. Every happy customer will tell ten
people about it. Satisfied readers become a silent sales force for you. The reverse is also
true. Unhappy readers tell others and soon selling is hindered by a bad reputation.
One of the ways to create satisfaction is to provide valuable, usable, unique information in
the field of your expertise. One of the simplest ways of becoming an expert is by doing.
This is the best way to gain because you the publisher know what you have experienced.
Information that comes from experience has a depth that cannot be duplicated.
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Yet before you gain experience you need a place to start and this place is education.
Becoming an expert by reading is the first step in learning. Reading helps you create a
foundation and template of thought which you can reflect from and build upon. To become
an expert read as much as you can about the subject you are publishing. Fortunately today
this is so much easier than before due to the Internet (though take care it’s also easier to
stumble upon false information over the net as well). Read everything you can get your
hands on so you have a good mental understanding of the fundamentals of the subject at
hand.
Then remember the old saying about learning and expertise. “An education is learning all
the rules. Experience is learning all the exception to the rules.” Once you have become an
expert through reading, start to incorporate what you have learned into your lifestyle.
Step #7: Lifestyle Your Product
Rancho Alto Grande, Dominican Republic. Far up the northern coast of the Dominican
Republic, lies a tiny village called Humacao. From there, if you turn left, head up the
mountain you'll reach an old dirt road. Drive a little way further, (preferably in a 4 wheel
drive), and you'll find a ranch. It's called Rancho Alto Grande, and it was owned by an
American named Bobby. Bobby was a friend. He raised cattle and ran a horse riding
ranch. Merri’s and my daughters loved to ride horses there.
I was sitting on Bobby's veranda, overlooking stately royal palms. They dot the
hills-huge sprays of green that grew smaller and faded into a view of the distant
sea. The girls had just galloped off into the jungle. I, sitting under palm thatch,
stretched in the cool tropical breeze and settled down to my laptop.
It had been twenty or more years since I had read that Hong Kong shipping article I wrote
about earlier in this lesson. Yet the message had never been forgotten. Do what you love!
As I sat there decades later, that message was every bit as clear. In quiet, in peace, in
total contentment, I wrote that message for this course. Publish what you love.
Having attained success beyond my wildest dreams, I believe the main reason was the
simple decision to be in a business that suited my lifestyle.
Had I chosen any other path, I doubt that I would have stuck through the hard times that
were part of my success. This is not to suggest that you have to have hard times. This
course alone would have helped me substantially. One reason I created it is to help readers
avoid my painful trial and error process.
Yet there may be difficult times and some hardships. If you love what you do, these
challenges are never as hard. Tough times can still be fun. You'll enjoy all the times,
whether they are immediately profitable in monetary terms or not.
We have previously defined publishing as the preparation and sale of any type of
information delivered in any possible form. If we narrow this definition just a little, we can
enhance our likelihood of success.
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Let’s define good publishing as satisfying a unique, highly defined group of readers. The
words unique and highly defined are underlined because doing what you love enhances
lifestyling, the next step in the 11 step product development process. Lifestyling is the way
to enjoy and enhance the process of finding your highly define group of buyers.
Lifestyling makes publishing fun! Lifestyling also creates loyal customers because lifestyling
helps you walk your talk. Lifestyling adds a richness to your publications because you are
publishing information about what you are really doing. The reality you experience comes
through in your publications.
The best example is this course. How could I have written it had I not had made many
mistakes and had several successes in publishing over 36 years?
Lifestyling adds a huge business advantage because it makes your products unique to your
experiences. If your products are uniquely you, they cannot be duplicated. They cannot be
easily compared so you are less likely to get in price wars. The more unique your product,
the easier it is to ignore competition and to sell at a profitable price.
When you learn by doing you also learn what it is like not to know. Take writing a book on
how to ski. If you read up on the subject, you will be reading skiing stuff produced by
experts. If you hire an expert for advice, you’ll use experts who may have forgotten more
about skiing than you will ever know. The information the experts have forgotten is
what makes your publication interesting!
Many publisher-writers feel overwhelmed because they start by thinking they have to learn
everything before they start. They don’t! They only need to know just a little more than
their readers.
A wise old sage once said, “if you tell someone a truth one level above their understanding,
they will think you are a genius. If you tell them two levels above their understanding, they
get angry. If you tell them three levels above their understanding they want to kill you”.
This is not a bad story to remember as you lifestyle your publication.
For example I gained a lot of my global investment experience by finding investment
managers and trying to manage them. My reports simply shared my experiences, good and
bad, of this process. One of the sales points I made when marketing these reports was that
I did not know how to manage global investments.
By telling readers of my problems and how I solved them and by offering to share what I
had learned, my publication and selling of them became more believable. Equally as
important, my publication became focused with my marketing so my readers learned that
what they were promised is what they got.
Enhance your experience by reading and studying to become an expert. If you read a
number of books on a subject and condense the knowledge you gain into one book,
brochure or report, you provide a valuable service. Such reading fills in gaps you miss
through experience. Such reading can even be enough to publish an entire product, but
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when combining this research with your experience you enhance your ability to publish in
depth.
Many publications are simply what a writer or publisher has read. Learn how to use your
library, the Internet and multiple other resources. Get on in the world and experience.
Read periodicals, newspapers or any publication that has information about the focus of
your publication. These publications usually fall flat because they lack small unique
details that are only gained from experience!
For example, when I wrote just about global investments and economics, I subscribed to
newspapers from all corners of the earth. I read them to see what was going on from the
local viewpoints rather than the slanted view of the news where I lived.
Though I now live a great deal of the time in the U.S. I do not just read U.S. papers or
watch U.S. television. Doing so would mean that I was using the same data base as 10,000
of my competitors. I have a different source of data than my competitors so what I offer is
unique.
Yet I find that my real growth for ideas about global investing comes when I travel and
when I invest abroad myself. My lifestyle keeps my publications fresh, new, alive and
real!
Some years ago a friend, published an eight page monthly investment newsletter digest that
simply contained quotes of many investment newsletters. This publisher’s expertise was
investment newsletters! His contacts were the publishers of those magazines. He just
loved coming round and meeting with and learning from others publishers. He was reading
all the newsletters he included in his report, but he also incorporated his entire system into
his lifestyle.
The danger in becoming an expert just from reading is your expertise can be shallow or
wrong. Sometimes one book is written about a subject. Then if the subject is popular more
books are written, all basically copied from that first book. If that first book isn't correct to
begin with, you may research many books and not know that they are all far from correct.
This is especially true on the Internet. Take extra care with what you learn in this way.
Use the contacts you develop and the experience you gain from lifetsyling to cross check
what you read and what you publish.
Recently because I live in Ecuador part of each year, I was asked to write an
article about this country for a healthy living magazine. The editor decided to
embellish on my article and added some stuff she pulled up from who knows
where. Thankfully I read her additions before the magazine went to press. They
were codswhallop! This editor was an intelligent woman who wrote well. She had
studied a book on Ecuador thoroughly but the book was totally out of date and had
I not had the experience of living there she would have seriously misinformed her
readers.
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If the article I had written had been on a subject beyond my experience I would
have had some of my contacts there check the article before sending it to print.
Another way to gain expertise is to interview experts. Find out who knows (through reading
or experience) what you want to know and see if you can interview them. The best
advertising an expert can have is to be exposed in editorial content so they thrive on giving
interviews. This costs and takes less than you might think and usually experienced experts
will give an interview free, especially if you give them a mention in the publication.
If you choose an expert and he wants more money for an interview than you can afford, you
can probably find a low cost alternative that works as well. If there are 100 experts in any
field, ten of them may have a reputation and be expensive.
The high fee is for the reputation not the expertise. The other 90 experts may know just as
Much as the better known ten, but for whatever reasons, they have not developed a
reputation. Their expertise will be inexpensive and often they have connections to the
experts with the reputation so you can enjoy the reputation without the fee.
One health article I wrote shows how to get the reputation without the expense. A
magazine wanted me to write an article about Ayurveda, the Indian science of health.
There was one expert who through the sale of numerous best sellers had developed a huge
reputation. He wanted an arm and a leg to great an interview. No deal! Two other
ayurvedic physicians had run a clinic with him. They knew as much or more about Ayurved.
They just did not know how to build a reputation. They happily granted interviews at no cost
and the article was billed using their names and the explaining that they had been co
medical directors with the better known doctor. So we got the interviews at a price we could
afford and were able to use the better known doctor’s name in our promotion anyhow.
Lifestyling, and becoming an expert through reading will lead you to the eighth step in the
11 step product development system.
Step #8: Develop Data Sources. Gaining sources of data either in print or on the
Internet and developing a network of experts will provide you with content to sell and help
you stay current on the knowledge. Once you have the content, you’ll want to double check
before you print and sell. One way to do this is by talking to other exerts in this field. As
you talk to these experts you can often enhance your publication by gleaning additional
stories that add life and uniqueness to your publication. Get to know these experts, help
them when you can and build a network so you remain knowledgeable in your field.
Now it’s time to create the publication.
Silent Schedules
The final three steps in creating your product is setting a schedule, staying silent and
creating back end business.
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One of the most important words in publishing is spelled D E A D L I N E. Gaining expertise
is important to build a sustained business but having a deadline makes sure that you don't
spend too much time, too much money and too much effort on getting the expertise.
Getting expertise are writing and editorial functions. Having and keeping deadlines is the
balancing function of the publisher. Deadlines turn knowledge into publications.
Nothing I have ever written and published has totally satisfied me (though I have been
satisfied with the process of getting it written and published). Everything I have ever
written could have been rewritten. It could have been made better.
A deadline says STOP, PRINT IT, DELIVER IT and GET ONTO THE NEXT JOB.
Becoming an expert is a never ending process. Publishing is the process of selling what you
have and making the best you can along the way. Deadlines keep the publishing process
going!
The overall process of publishing is creative. As such it requires an internal creative force.
This force is the fire that makes writers want to write, painters want to paint and musicians
want to play.
Writing is a lonely profession. The same is true for parts of publishing. Ultimately the writer
must dwell with just his or her thoughts and the pen, typewriter or computer.
Only after something is written can the social aspect of editing begin. The editor can talk
about the paragraphs, sentences and words. The publisher can talk about markets and
economic results.
It is the creative force working at different levels through the writer, editor and publisher
that makes a publication. The creative force within us wants to get something out. When
we capture that energy and let it work, the result is production.
Talking too much about a publication at the production stage can dispel the creative force.
When writers talk about what they are doing after the planning stage, they weaken their
effort. Their thoughts need to build within, so they will spill out at the keyboard. Without
silence the publication is born in speech, enthusiasm is lost and it becomes harder to bring it
out in print.
There is nothing wrong with using your potential publication as a conversation piece if this is
what you want, (something to talk about)...but if you want to self-publish, use those
creative urges create on the computer or on paper, not from your mouth.
If you want to talk instead, become a story teller.
Once we set a schedule for a publication we stop talking about it and maintain our schedule
and keep our silence.
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Back End Business
Many publishers make as much or more profit selling other products (or their list of readers)
as they do selling their books. So the final step in creating your publication is to look for
additional opportunities that can come from your publication. We cover this in much more
detail in a later lesson, but you may enhance income if you are aware of extra opportunity
even at this stage. The first case study below shows how knowing of a back end product
altered the contents of a publication I created not long ago.
You can use the 11 steps of product creation outlined in the past three chapters to create
your publication. At first, this may seem cumbersome, after a while it will become
automatic.
Look at successful publishers, and they will have a system somewhat as has been described.
If you publish information you are interested in; this is a joyful, fun, creative process and
will result in a product that is ready to sell and will sell at a profit. The second case study
below shows how I used the 11 step creative process.
Case Study - Ecuador Report
Our publishing business progressed with the times for nearly 30 years and then took a
sudden turn because of love. In the late 60s and 70s our message was invest abroad, in
Japan, Australia, Switzerland, Germany and gold. That was progressive thinking then. In
the late 70s the focus shifted to the tigers: Singapore, South Korea, Taiwan, Malaysia and
other areas of Southeast Asia. Once again this was leading edge economic thought. Finally
in the early 90s South America became the hot lace to invest abroad and in the process of
researching this region we arrived in Ecuador.
Merri and I fell in love with this tiny Andean nation for reasons that had nothing to do with
investing or economics. We wanted to write a report about Ecuador that went beyond
economics.
As Merri and I were researching and writing this report, we met and got to know the owner
of an excellent Spanish school in Quito. He had created a wonderful three week Spanish
learning tour that allowed people to visit four regions in Ecuador as they learned pretty good
Spanish over the course of three weeks.
We began selling these courses. The marketing piece we used is below:
Learn Spanish in Three Weeks in Ecuador
To learn in the sun is fun! Now there is a way to enjoy three full weeks of direct
sunlight and solve one of the biggest communications problems that face a great
deal of the English speaking civilization.
Spanish is the second largest language in the world. Chances are a huge Spanish
speaking population lives south of or around you. Yet our language system did not
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teach us how to communicate with or understand this culture. Now there is way,
to enjoy a weeks in the sun and learn Spanish that is so incredibly inexpensive I
would not believe it.
However, Merri and I have known the owner of the largest Spanish school in
Ecuador, a Norwegian businessman who lives in Quito, for many years. I have
worked with him continually and found him of the highest integrity.
That’s why we are so excited over the special Spanish deal he has created for the
10th anniversary of his school in 2004. He calls it “the Discover Ecuador Program
for Learning Spanish”. The program includes Spanish lessons in groups or “one to
one” at four destinations in Ecuador. This appeals to anyone who wants to speak
Spanish get to know Latin culture, discover all three regions of Ecuador; the
Amazon jungle, the Pacific coast and the Andes highlands for three weeks!
This is a special offer with limited space that starts the first Monday of every
month for group lessons and with individual lessons a person can start any
Monday and join the program at any of the 4 locations. The program is really
exciting. The price? Unbelievable. The first session is in Quito, Ecuador’s capital
and one of the most beautiful colonial cities in the world. Then you head for the
Amazon Jungle where you will see cultures and rain forests that you will never
forget. Third, you study in Cuenca, the Colonial City, perhaps the most cultured,
clean and stunning towns in all of South America and finally head to the Pacific
Coast for a week’s stay at one of the most charming ecological centers made of
bamboo Merri and I have ever visited. You’ll also visit Isla de la Plata, an island
just off the coast that is called the “Poorman’s Galapagos”. When we were there,
we had a wonderful experience, including a first hand look at the world famous
blue boobies. There is an optional weekend trip to Papallacta spa which consists of
all natural volcanic springs ranging from fiery hot to cold, located in a high and
remote mountain valley. At night you can lie in naturally warm pools and watch
stars glitter so brightly you breath will be taken away (easy at the 11,000 foot
altitude). The restaurant serves delicious organic food and this is one of the best
healing and spiritual spas Merri and I have ever visited and we go there again and
again. Now here is the exciting part the Price. Individual lessons are a mere
$1100. Group lessons $ 1000 for the entire three weeks! Believe it or not this
prices includes:
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
70 hours of Spanish instruction
Accommodation with families in Quito and Cuenca, all meals included
All weekdays activities in Quito and Cuenca
City tours in Quito and Cuenca
Accommodation, meals and guided trips at the jungle lodge
Accommodation and trip to Isla de la Plata at the coast
Airport pickup in Quito
Internet in Quito and Cuenca
Ecuador map
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Which is your desire? Do you want to understand and communicate with your
Spanish speaking neighbors better? Or do you just want to get away to the sun?
There will never be a way to do this in such style.
Group lessons start the first Monday every month. $1300 Individual/$1000.
You can assure your space with a $250 deposit per student (refundable up to 30
days before the course-then only refundable after if another student is found). The
course fee is payable in full two weeks before your class begins.
This advertising worked well and so while writing the Ecuador report I was aware
of this potential. I used this fact in two ways.
First, I wrote about the Spanish school in the report. Weaving an advertisement into
editorial content can be tricky and there are dangers of going overboard. However some of
the finest publishing institutions (such as National Geographic) do this all the time.
Tastefully turn advertising into editorial is the key.
The information included in the report was brief and was presented as just one of many
opportunities one could enjoy in Ecuador. There was nothing pushy and the editorial
mention did not attempt to sell anything.
Then I sent a real marketing piece about the Spanish tour to everyone who bought that
report! This sales piece worked extra well because the readers had already shown an
interest in Ecuador and the sales piece was supported by the editorial they had previously
read.
Case Study - Mutual Fund Guide
We can review how the 11 point product creation process was used to create a report about
overseas mutual funds. Our publishing business had grown to the point where we had tens
of thousands of readers on our list and we had noticed that a growing number were less
sophisticated investors with smaller amounts to invest. U.S. mutual funds were still not
offering global funds at that time so overseas funds offered a perfect way for our readers to
diversify investments abroad.
First, we developed the idea, which was a very simple definition. This would be a report that
explained what overseas funds were, how to choose safe ones, how to buy and track their
performance. Then the report would review a dozen top performing overseas funds of the
past year (a very sexy sales point). Then it would list hundreds of funds that U.S. investors
could use.
Next we focused the idea. Was it legal and ethical?" Yes. "Was it attractive?" You bet.
Many overseas funds had been top performers. "Was the idea usable?" Very! I had been
using these funds (as had many of my readers) for years. "Was it understandable?" Yes.
Readers already understood mutual funds so filling the gap between U.S. and overseas was
easy. "Was it salable"? I had a head start on this one. I had published and sold a similar
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publication five years earlier, so felt confident it would sell. Also, I was aware that two
large publishing firms both sold a similar (but less complete) annual for over $150.
Focusing the client was easy. I would market to all the readers on my list first. If that did
not work for me, nothing would. If that worked well I would market to other lists which I
had used with success to market my other financial books.
Next I focused the client by choosing my favorite client. This was a man that I have known
for years. I wrote the report and the selling piece for him.
As I focused the market and thought about this man and all my readers I realized that one
important aspect would be not to overwhelm. So I determined that one important feature of
the report would be make it very practical and easy to use so I decided to write only about
funds that were tracked daily in newspapers available in the U.S. This kept the information
practical because readers could buy and track any of the funds covered.
When I started the sixth step, researching the product, I was glad I had narrowed the field.
My research found over 3,800 funds listed in just these two papers! "Wow", I thought,
"most readers will never be able to plow through 3,800 mutual funds. What they need is
some way to easily reach the funds that fit their needs!"
Having focused the product to be practical at not more than 200 pages, I could focus the
finances and found my printing and delivery costs would be about $3.80 apiece. If I can sell
1,000 reports at $49 each with a 20,000 piece mailing, my costs $13,800. My income
$49,000. Good enough!
This thinking further refined the nature of the report which had now become a report about
how to filter through 3,800 funds and concentrate on just a few.
From this thinking, a report emerged that spent 180 pages telling how to easily sort through
3,800 funds, how to choose those best for one's particular and how to obtain newspapers
that tracked the funds selected.
This report would not be a total treatise on global mutual funds. Had I written such a
report, I could have boasted "I have written the ultimate report on mutual funds." This
could have been good marketing copy, great for my ego and bad for the reader.
A complete report would have run over a thousand pages and would have been so full of
stuff It could never be read. Plus the price would have been so high that my readers might
not buy.
My goal was to give the reader something he could use! I produced what I thought the
reader needed, not what I might want to write for any other reason.
To become an expert took a bit of work. I wrote to every mutual fund in the two papers.
Stacks of literature came back. I sorted and read until I finally got the picture.
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I didn't have to think about lifestyling. The subject fitted my lifestyle, I already invested in
such funds, had made some excellent profits and was easily caught up and enjoyed the
project.
My way of setting a schedule is to write and send out the sales piece. Now I have to get that
darn product done! I shut up (silence is golden in this instance) and wrote. It was time to
digest the material and get the book out.
The report turned out to be 210 pages by the time I got it to the printer. I had to revise my
sums. Printing costs had skyrocketed (mainly higher paper costs). So I jumped the price to
$79.
In the end, this report was about how to easily plow through the 3,800 funds and how to
invest in them. The reader's end use of the data dictated the report and from many
comments I received from readers who used the data and were very happy.
We sold thousands of copies so we were too!
Assignment
Finish the last six points on your 11 step check list.
Report” below to get an idea.
See how I did the “Flee Flea
Idea Check List
* Step #6: Become an expert. Include further research. Read the following books:
The Encyclopedia of Natural Pet Care-Natural Pet Care: How to Improve Your Animal's
Quality of Life- Natural Pet Healing: Our Psychic, Spiritual Connection- Natural Pet Cures:
Dog & Cat Care the Natural Way- Natural Nutrition for Dogs and Cats: The Ultimate Pet
Diet- Parasites- The little killers, fleas, lice, mosquitoes- Pest Control- Natural Enemies
Handbook: The Illustrated Guide to Biological Pest Control- Natural Pest Control-CommonSense Pest Control- Shepherd's Purse: Organic Pest Control Handbook-Flea control on pets
and around the house (Agriculture and natural resources)- Flea-Control Products Threaten
Pets and Children.(Brief Article) : An article from: Journal of Environmental Health- Fleasing the public. (Cornucopia Natural Pet Food case; food claimed to repel fleas)- Handbook of
Environmental Engineering: Water Resources and Natural Control Processes (Handbook of
environmental engineering)- Dr. Pitcairn's Complete Guide to Natural Health for Dogs &
Cats-Conservation Biological Control
* Step #7: Lifestyle the product. Use data from the books read above on our dog.
Keep a journal of what happens. Get 12 neighbors and friends to try the same techniques
and record their comments.
* Step #8: Develop data sources. Write to the authors and references in the books
studied. Tell about the report and ask for any added comments they might make. Ask local
vets, dog trainers for data and their comments. Ask magazine publishers if they have any
data in their archives. Create a list of the authors with names addresses and phones. See if
they put on any seminars or have any newsletters or other information on the subject.
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* Step #9: Set a schedule. Read two books a week. Contact each author as soon as
book is read. Keep notes and expand outline based on new data acquired from reading and
experience with pets. Begin first draft in 12 weeks.
* Step #10: Create back end business. Ask authors contacted if they do seminars or
have newsletters. See if they will pay commissions or provide wholesale prices on seminars
or on the products sold. See if they would be interested in putting on or participating in
natural healthy pet seminar at the farm. See if they would be interested in renting list of
report buyers. Contact local holistic vets and holistic pet trainers to see if they are
interested in putting on or participating in natural pet seminar. See if they are interested in
renting report buyer list or have any product or service to sell.
* Step #11: Set up silence.
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Lesson Eight
Selling
A midnight breeze kisses black hemlock and pine in the deep embrace of a full
amber moon. Dark clouds race and churn the lunar cream and cast chilled shadows
over the cemetery just ahead.
Blue Ridge Mountains-North Carolina. I was standing in a pitch black cemetery near
midnight. This may not seem the norm but I have a friend who forced me. Ida is her name
and secrets she shares are the core of good health, energy and long life. These are secrets
for weight loss, stress reduction and longevity. Ida has proven this fact by living to be 115! I
am cold and a little afraid, but here I am so I can share these secrets with you.
Hold it! Stop reading. Now. Please. Having read the two paragraphs above for a moment
close your eyes and just feel. Sense your inner emotions. What do you feel about the place?
What are you feeling about me?
If the 119 words above did as intended, they painted a picture so some part of you is sitting
in a spooky mountain cemetery with me. The emotions? Do you feel a little creepy?
Curious? I hope so. If not, the first step in this selling story failed.
Publishing is marketing and a very important part of marketing is your selling story. This
lesson will help you succeed in your publishing activity through a better understanding of
how to create sales stories.
Why did I begin this lesson with a vignette about standing in a cemetery? Why would I start
every lesson in this course with word pictures (which I have done for the last 20 years).
Emotions sell!
There you have it. This is an all encompassing truth about selling in our modern, analytical,
scientific world. Facts and figures do not mean a thing (in terms of selling) unless they
generate an emotion. I write word pictures to stir emotions (yours and mine). More on this
in a moment.
All purchases are made from emotions. Yet have we ever taken the time to define the
range of emotions that we as human beings so often feel? And what are the most powerful
emotions? Fear? Greed? Love? (The ones used most for selling are happiness, compassion
and friendliness).
The short set-up in the cemetery above came from a marketing piece for a course on
wellness that I conduct at our farm. We’ll look at this story in more detail in a moment, but
first let’s share the secret of every successful novel, movie and selling story.
All successful fiction portrays a sympathetic character striving for a worthwhile goal. Let’s do
that again.
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All successful fiction portrays a sympathetic character striving for a worthwhile goal.
Now once more.
All successful fiction portrays a sympathetic character striving for a worthwhile
goal.
This is the longest lesson in the course (it has about five times as many words as any other
lesson). This is the only sentence I repeat three times. Get the point?
Let’s begin by looking at fiction. Selling often uses fiction…sometimes a lot.
Take the headline above. This is the lead I use in a selling story for health courses we
conduct at our 252 acre farm in the Blue Ridge. Do I have a friend named Ida? No. Did
anyone force me to sit in a graveyard? No. Have I ever set in a graveyard at midnight? No.
Is the selling story true? Absolutely.
Let me explain why. Let me explain why fictional honesty is not only an important part of
selling but is such an integral part of human nature that every culture since the beginning of
mankind has used this ingenious form of communication as a fundamental part of its
existence.
When you buy a novel do you expect it to be true? Of course not. Yet do you expect to gain
truths from it? Perhaps. At least that’s what Mrs. Llaird, my high school English teacher told
me as we tore the fiction of Silas Marner, the Red Badge of Courage and Bridge of San Luis
Rey apart looking for truths.
What is the truth? On our farm there is a family graveyard (from the family that lived here
before we bought). The headstones show that the people buried here were aged 86, 91, 95,
100 and 115. This in itself is pretty amazing. Poor Appalachian farmers in the 1800s and
early to mid 1900s did not have health plans, hospitals, modern drugs and perhaps not even
medical doctors. This is powerful stuff, poor people without medical care living to be 115!
Seeing these headstones stimulated me to think about the secrets of good health and the
importance of good food, air water and exercise and this is why we put health courses on at
the farm. We have fresh air, pure water and plenty of room to stretch.
Why add the midnight graveyard stuff? Because our Western society has been condition to
have emotions about graveyards at midnight. I wanted to stir the emotions.
Fairy tales, myths and legends exist in every society and are so powerful that they jump
generations, cultures and even millenniums. We all know about Greek and Roman
mythology. Right?
Aristophanes' play Lysistrata hilariously lambastes war-mongers. This is a funny, ribald
fictional play written at a time of great duress. The entire welfare of the fragile Athenian
city-state was threatened from hostile forces and the play was a parody that critiqued the
society. Fiction was needed to get across a scary point.
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Likewise, Sophocles' play Antigone was a critique of absolute power and unenlightened rule
that outlined the disasters that befell a society in the midst of change. These fictional
selling stories have lasted thousands of years.
Were the stories true? Did Caesar really say “Et tu, Brute”? Or was this quote an
exaggeration made to drive home a sad point about friendship in politics. Was this a
fictional truth that has been remembered for thousands of years? Or was this a quote
pulled from the Roman Daily Morning News?
This sixth sense is the sense our selling story wants to touch. In a way, all the other
five senses are useless without this sixth sense. Perhaps one of life’s most ironic and least
understood aspects is that humanity uses its own fiction to touch the realities we each
individually crate within.
In the end every song and every great painting comes from the heart not the brain. Great
sales stories dwell within our hearts. If sales stories do not rise from the heart they may, or
may not work but, they will never be great.
When I look back at my publishing efforts over thirty plus years I have written hundreds
perhaps thousands, of selling stories. Most were what I call journeyman efforts, stuff I had
to crank out because there was a job to be done. These worked and earned my living.
A few however came because some emotion or raw nerve had been touched. These were
great. These earned millions.
Fiction sells because it recognizes a reality of human nature! Entertainment is fun. Our
entire beings, our body mind and souls are satisfaction seeking machines and when learning
is fun, we remember and we react. We learn best when we are entertained! This is the way
we are.
This is important to know because the minute we are born, our senses begin to fool us. We
begin to believe this sensual input and this fictional world we create. Our world is our own
personal fantasy. Human beings want fiction so badly we actually create it for ourselves.
In other words, fiction is OK. Fiction stretches the imagination. Fiction is fun and sets
the human apart from all other beings on earth. We are our vivid imagination.
However, all fiction in our sales story must be based on reality! The purpose of the sales
story is to excite the reader. The purpose of the product is to insight the same person. The
fantasy of a well balanced sales story enhances the value of the product. To do this, there
must be a thread of reality that connects the sales story to the usefulness of the product.
Take a Rolls Royce as an example. 98% of a Rolls Royce's value is fantasy. I personally
went through one particular period of insanity when I owned and drove two of them
(actually one Rolls and one Bentley-another fantasy-one car with two different names). I
know from experience that they can be difficult, undependable and vastly overpriced cars.
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I have driven Dodge mini vans since. From a transportation point of view, the mini-van is
far more efficient and a better vehicle. The Rolls broke down, consumed more gas, carried
less people, cost much more and was far harder to maintain and repair. We won’t even
consider the difference in the initial cost.
What set the Rolls aside was pure fantasy. When I used to get inside, I felt something
special. This was my fantasy. Any differences in me as a person when I was in the Rolls
versus the Dodge were totally in my mind. If others felt differently about me, this was their
fantasy. I really was the same guy. Or was I? Did my fantasy (and yours) make me
different?
So when the Rolls’ sales story said "Those who own a Rolls are special", it added to the
value of that car. The fiction of that sales story allowed me to enhance my fantasy and
perhaps even make me a different person. Maybe I had more confidence, vim, vigor or
whatever.
No luxury is spared in the Rolls. The leather, wood, etc. are the finest. I can look at the
Rolls and let the sales story enhance my pleasure gained from that car. The fantasy
enhances my satisfaction because there is a quality difference and I can let this difference
make me different.
Sales fiction must be based on reality. Understanding this fact can mean the difference
between having fun as you make a fortune from a huge, loyal, happy list of readers and
going to jail.
If the Rolls were delivered with cheap plastic seat covers and a plastic wood-like dashboard,
the buyer who has just laid out a quarter mil or more for the car may be disturbed. Or if
the Rolls sales story had stressed gas consumption economy, the buyer may be unhappy
with the product when he discovers it cost ten times as much, eats twice the gas and cost
quadruple to service. The sales story would have been untruthful.
Sales fantasy must be focused to reflect truth!
The Ida story offers a course on wellness. Readers come to our North Carolina farm. We
feed them good organic food and pure water. We get them to exercise in the woods and
breath clean air. We keep them away from the phone, email, fax and TV and provide them
peace and quiet as we share valuable tips about how to be healthier. We spent years and
tens of thousands of miles of travel to gain the tips we share from healers in India, the
Andes, Amazon, China and Tibet. This course works well and our readers love it.
So what reality does the cemetery story reflect?
We conduct these courses at our farm deep in the Blue Ridge. On that farm there is an old
family cemetery. There are five headstones in that cemetery that shows ages 86, 91, 95,
100 and 115. I am impressed.
Though I have never been there at midnight, I often visit this cemetery and reflect on
health. There is a woman buried there who lived to 115. Her name is not Ida, but I respect
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for her family, I would never use her real name. When I was five years old my best friend’s
Mom was Ida. She taught me a lot. I thought the name homey and that readers would like
it…so the woman became Ida. I felt that sitting in a cemetery on a dark and stormy night at
midnight would capture the reader’s attention and stir their emotions. This is spooky,
emotive and interesting and would help the reader learn and enjoy the story more.
There you have it, fiction based on the product I have to offer, what my readers want, and
what will touch their emotions. This sales story is meant to excite the reader so they will
come to our farm where I know I can enhance the reader’s life.
Here is the whole sales story for that course.
A midnight breeze kisses blackened hemlock and pine in the
deep embrace of a full amber moon. Dark clouds race and churn
the lunar cream that casts chilled shadows over the cemetery
just ahead.
Blue Ridge North Carolina. I was standing in a pitch black cemetery near
midnight. This may not seem the norm but I have a friend who forced me.
Ida is her name and secrets she shares are the core of good health, energy
and long life. These are secrets for weight loss, stress reduction and
longevity. Ida has proven this fact by living to be 115! I am cold and a little
afraid, but I am here so I can share these secrets with you.
These secrets are hidden information on weight loss, stress reduction and
longevity.
There are places of purity and rejuvenation, where the body and mind can
energize rest and heal. One is Merrily Farms, the 290 acre sanctuary of this
magazine, situated deep in the forests of the Blue Ridge.
The headstones in a family cemetery there say it all. John reached age 91
and his wife, Jill 95. Two more were aged 86 and 100. And Ida lived 115
years, born 1794 to 1909. Imagine living through three centuries!
“These were mountain farmers without access to doctors, hospitals or drugs.
They thrived on fresh air, pure spring water, fresh organic food, healthy labor
and folk secrets of energy and good health and thus lived long.
We invite you to join readers of this magazine to learn these Blue
Ridge health secrets and much more as you enjoy three to six days of
simplicity, purity and rejuvenation at one of three upcoming Wellness
Weekends conducted this July, August and September.
Live and Learn
Wellness Weekends immerse you in a lifestyle garnered by wise
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people over centuries. Join us and live these ideas as you learn.
For example during Wellness Weekend you eat in easy, simple, almost
unknown, ways that cut caloric intake, the only scientifically proven
way to increase longevity. Health seekers staying at the farm report
they eat more than ever but lose weight and reduce inches in as little
as three days!
You won’t be eating celery, lettuce and cardboard tasting crisp bread either.
Part of wellness is enjoying food! You learn how to prepare food so it’s more
nourishing and filling with herbs and spices that modulate blood sugar levels
so hunger fades away. One example of spice energization uses ginger,
cinnamon and cloves. Taken in correct amounts and blends, at the right
time, they crank the metabolism and calm the appetite.
You get and enjoy recipes for easy-to-buy-at-the-supermarket foods such as
protein balanced pancakes with organic panela-canela syrup, a delicious,
sweet meal that fills as it builds the calorie burning process. Other recipes
include Coddle Yourself Egg-High Protein Country Cottage Pie-Low CarbVeggie Chile & Spaghetti- Weightless Bread-High Mountain Pure Protein
Quinoa Couscous-Better Oatmeal of Steel- Several Soups for Super StrengthBerry Good Crunch and Waist Less Apple Crumble.
Unlock the Mystery of Key Muscles
Another virtually unknown weight control trick is a simple exercise that
energizes and coordinates digestive systems by exercising key muscles as we
eat! When you energize these muscles, they direct the entire body to regulate
burning of sugars and fat.
Schedule
Each day you enjoy three, seven step cycles of oxygenation,
coordination, purification, energization, education, occupation and
relaxation. This schedule includes:
Oxygenation-Coordination: Early deep woods trail walks are followed by
gentle Andean, Tibetan and Indian exercises that open energy centers and
awakens key muscles. Exercises include the Llama Walk, Lizard Crawl and
the Warrior's Bow followed by key muscle activators. Optional creek plunges
(or showers) induce oxygenated blood into vital organs.
Purification: Cleansing steam baths, soaks in sacred Andean purification
herbs and purifying teas leave the body, hair and mind clean, clear and
aromatic.
Energization: Eat balanced, correctly prepared organic food and drink
purifying herbal teas.
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Occupation: Toil in physical labor ranging from gardening and animal care
to path building and clearing woods.
Relaxation: Meditation, hammocking, wet dew labyrinth walks, massage and
soaking in the 105 degree pure spring waters of Indian Sacred Waters are
five ways you relieve stress.
Choose a Wellness Weekend or a Week! Arrive Thursday afternoon
and depart Sunday. Or choose to stay for advanced sessions from
Sunday through Tuesday.
Low cost. Just $499! ($749 for two sharing a room or $998 for the week $1,398 for two sharing a room). Yet here is the best part….
We want to share the purity of our sanctuary and invite you to be our
guest. We will feed and house you in one of our rustic, but super
comfortable farmhouses or cabins, all without additional charge. See
accommodations at www.littlehorsecreek.com
Join us amidst the deep woods. Stroll in the fine cream of an amber forest
moon. Dance in innocent gardens with magical fireflies. Soak in the mystical
heated waters of the historic Indian Springs. Sip pure water and savor clean
air all for good health.
Do you see the flow of this piece? First I tried to capture the reader’s attention, get him or
her intrigued and curious. Then I wrote: “I am cold and a little afraid, but I am here so I can
share these secrets with you.” My goal? Sympathy and empathy! I was cold in the
dark and afraid. That deserves sympathy. I was there to help them. What could be a more
worthwhile goal?
Take another example of the selling headline I use in one of my economic sales stories. It
starts "Borrow Low-Deposit High". Borrow at 7%. Redeposit the loan for 13% all at the
same bank!"
The reader cannot always do this. When the reader can, he has to have collateral for the
loan. There is risk in the technique. Later in the sales piece, I explain much of this, but the
theme of the sales story is based on the reality that readers t low interest rates and reinvest
at higher rates of return.
The sales story must accomplish five goals; #1: tell the reader the benefits he may gain,
# 2: appeal to the reader at an emotional level, # 3: keep the reader turning the page,
# 4: convince the reader he will be satisfied and # 5: move the reader to action.
Goal #1: Stress benefits at the correct level. In the Borrow Low-Deposit High sales
story, I offer the reader knowledge, names and addresses on vital, new, money making
subjects. These are the benefits stressed in this sales piece. These are the benefits gained
in the report and the sales story accurately reflects this.
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Such benefits can be offered at many levels of appeal. It is important to understand how
levels of appeal work. That Borrow Low sales story offers knowledge. Knowledge is a fourth
level of appeal benefit. Knowledge of names and addresses on vital, new investing ideas is
great, but only because it leads to a third level of appeal. Money is the real benefit. But
wait! The reader only wants money because money can buy things. So things are the real
benefit. Not yet! These things are only the second layer of appeal because he or she
perceives that the things will make him or her more powerful, handsome, beautiful, sexy,
safer or longer lived. These are the real benefits the reader wants first and these offer the
ultimate level of appeal.
Understanding your reader and your format helps determine the benefit level of appeal you
want to stress. In the Borrow Low sales story, I assumed my reader was sophisticated and
assumed that he or she knew the benefits of international investing. I assumed they would
figure out that knowledge leads to money. I assumed they would already know what things
they wanted to buy if they had the extra money. Plus I assumed he would understand how
these things would add happiness to his life.
If a publisher was reaching a less sophisticated reader, he or she might add something
like..."Imagine all the money this knowledge can bring and picture having your own second
home, boat or airplane, through profits made with these hot new investments!" They might
even add, “Imagine how these things will impress your friends, neighbors and associates
etc.”
On the other hand, if a publisher were selling to money managers who worked for large
banks, they might move to a fifth level of appeal. They might stress how it would be easier
and faster to get to the knowledge. Convenience would be the selling point rather than the
knowledge itself.
You have to determine carefully how many levels of appeal you want to include when you
explain the benefit of your product or service. If you pitch benefits at too high a level of
appeal, your reader misses the point. If you pitch the benefits too low the reader gets bored
or loses respect for your story because it is too simple.
If the readers of the Borrow Low marketing piece had never used knowledge and banks to
make money that piece would not have worked. The reader may not have made the link.
They might have thought, “Why in the heck do I want names and addresses of banks
thousands of miles away? My money is buried in the back yard.”
A good example of this comes from a publisher I know who sold reports about how to have
foreign bank accounts and how to have your own bank, etc. The stuff he sold was a
complete rip off and led himself (I believe he is now in jail) and many of his readers into
trouble. He stayed in business for a surprising number of years despite everyone in the
industry knowing he was running a scam. This was because he focused on and appealed to
unsophisticated investors. His ads reflecting this, were full of graphics of good looking guy
getting out of a Farrari Enzo or a Rolls and into his private jet while lots of real sexy babes
stood by looking impressed. I was not impressed with the man or his business. He was
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certainly a very poor example of a good publisher and person, but I have to admit he knew
how to focus the appeal of his product.
On the other hand the very sophisticated investor may have thought, ”Heck I have been
doing this for 20 years. This is wasting my time.”
Golden Rule of Simplicity
There is a simple three-step approach to assure you are stressing benefits for your reader at
the correct level of appeal. This approach is the golden rule of simplicity.
Here are the three steps in the golden rule. First, publish things in which you are interested.
Second, write for those who are like you. If you can do this, the third step is easy. Three,
write from the heart and stress the benefit you genuinely feel the reader will receive!
Follow these three simple steps and you will write interesting stuff because your heart is
interested. You will communicate the benefits that the reader will receive directly from your
heart to the reader's heart. You are writing to people like you and their heart beats with
the same interests as yours!
Goal #2: Appeal to emotions. The levels of appeal are important because emotions, not
knowledge, sell. Every successful sales story ultimately enhances an emotion. I use the
word enhance rather than create. Sales stories do not create emotions. The reader already
has emotions. The purpose of the story is to arouse or increase emotions the reader
already has.
Again let's look at some deeper philosophies, while keeping the golden rule of simplicity in
mind. I am not a psychologist, philosopher or theologian. I do not profess that what is
written below is anywhere near an ultimate answer to understanding the human
condition.
But my years of experience in selling has given me a fragmented perception of how and
why humans react to sales stories. I offer them here to help you sell what you publish,
though I feel this only the tip of the iceberg.
Observing human reactions is akin to studying light. If someone teaches us how to turn on
a light by flipping the switch, the knowledge can be of practical use. But there is more
involved-wiring, electricity, physics, quantum mechanics.
Understanding how to flip the switch is the starting point. Then we work backward into the
fuse box and from there to the deeper stuff. Observe your reader’s response to your
sales stories. Then keep asking why.
Observe every aspect of your life, science, religion, business, etc. Your life is like many
others, in many ways. Your aspects (science, religion, business) are at some level
connected with others. The more connections you see within, the more successful you will
be without.
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For selling purposes, assume there is just one human emotion, a thread that weaves
through all things of life. I can’t put a name to it, but for the lack of something better, call
it love. One great quote is that “Nature speaks though the lover.” Our sales stories should
as well.
Lest there be any confusion, this a far deeper force than the bonding of spouses, kids,
moms, dads and friends. This love is the recognition of all that which is common in all. This
is the love that connects everything. The Great Sufi poet Rumi calls this force calls it “Our
Reasonable Father”. Carl Sandburg writes about it, “Love, with little hands, Comes and
touches you, With a thousand memories, And asks you, Beautiful, unanswerable questions.”
This is the deep seated emotion of union that makes us what we are. This power reflects in
two ways. Positive love comes from a focus on how all things are connected. Negative love
(call it fear) focuses on the aspects of reality that we view as separate.
In using the terms positive and negative, let’s not label them good and the other bad. Love
is good, because everything is all connected. Anytime someone does something good for
one, he does good for all.
Fear can be good too. We would not have union without separation. Fear keeps us
intact. Without fear we might ignore pain and pain is a good survival tool.
Positive love is the root of constructive emotions, adoration, respect, sexual desire, honor,
parental love, devotion, etc. Fear is the behind negative love emotions, anger, hate, rage,
etc. Every sub emotion has two opposite sides. Fright and bravery, hate and
humanitarianism, anger and peacefulness.
Your sales story can operate on either side of the spectrum or both. For example, a friend
of mine built a very large subscription base for his newsletter with the selling story, "We
Should Be Mad as Hell at the Government?" He had a point. He touched on an emotion
that was obviously strong in the hearts of many readers. By touching and magnifying that
emotion in the sales story, he picked up thousands of readers.
Yet other marketing pieces use the most loving humanitarian emotions to raise money for
starving children, to save whales, etc.
For example I used the humanitarian approach to sell tens of thousands of dollars of
Spanish lessons with a sales story that began:
“Creativity, humanitarianism and prosperity come in many forms, but all of them require
three things, understanding, communications and inspiration. Learn here how to enjoy an
entire month of direct sunlight every single day and solve one of the biggest
communications problems that face a great deal of the English speaking civilization.
Spanish is the second largest language in the world. Chances are a huge Spanish speaking
population lives south of or around you. Yet our language system did not teach us how to
communicate with or understand this culture. Now there is way, to enjoy an entire month in
the sun and learn Spanish that is so incredibly inexpensive I would not believe it.”
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Either side of the spectrum could work. I could have marketed those Spanish lesson with a
“You had better learn Spanish or you might not keep your job and earn a living” approach.
The key is in the timing and focus. Emotions change. We want our marketing pieces to
reflect the moods of our readers. The humanitarian sales story above first appeared in
December. Note that I also stressed the “learn in the sun” figuring that a lot of northerners
would be in the cold and snow when they read that message. The ads also appeared in
magazines that stressed healthy living and I knew from, the demographics of that
publication that readers were interested in humanitarian issues. I felt that this approach
would work on that demographic model.
We can understand timing and focus better if we touch on the national psyche.
The national psyche is the emotion people are feeling about some subject at the
time they receive your marketing story.
A true story about another publishing friend gives a good idea of how important the shifting
moods of national psyche can be. This friend, a very successful financial publisher wrote a
sales piece that stressed the emotion of anger. The anger was aimed at the government,
especially the President, who at that time was President Ronald Reagan. The letter pointed
out many problems in the country that seemed to be derived from poor decisions on the
part of the President. The marketing piece might have worked. Much of the nation was
upset about the economics in the country at that time.
Tough luck! The day before the letter was to be mailed, President Reagan was shot and
became a hero in the national psyche overnight! My friend sent the letters to the dump and
lost many thousands of dollars. He was experienced enough to know that this letter was not
in tune with the national psyche. He would have lost even more had he paid for postage to
mail those letters, so he cut his loss. He understood how important timing can be to a sales
story’s success. Had he mailed the letters, they would have been so out of step with the
accessible emotions of his readers, that the marketing piece would have bombed.
9/11 really shifted the national psyche. Ask anyone who was selling travel at that time. I
watched a seminar I was to conduct that October go from sold-out to empty. I know.
Luck has a lot to do with immediate success of a sales story. One event or the other may
change the mood of the market quickly. Sometimes this helps. Other times not. This is life.
We cannot see the future. We can however enhance our luck by being aware of the basic
emotions running though our markets.
Humanitarian emotions (such as concern about starving children) for example are always
near the surface in wealthy nations. The same emotional appeal to some groups will vary
from time to time as the national psyche shifts, but the emotion is always there. Bad
economic conditions will reduce results. People give less to others when they are worried
about themselves. A war can ruin a humanitarian sales story. Fear (negative)
counterbalances the humanitarian (positive love) emotions. Yet if you know that the
humanitarianism emotion is always near the surface and are aware of current events, you
can get pretty good at guessing when and what emotions to aim your appeal.
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My publishing business deals with investing, I normally examine the national psyche for
emotions I call fear and greed. When markets are bad, when there is depression and
poor economic circumstances, my sales stories try to touch on fears readers might have. I
assume that the national psyche at that moment is slanted toward fear.
When dealing in this negative realm, the sales story needs to offer solutions to problems.
If markets are going down, a sales story might be about how the market is about to crash
further. If markets are going up I can choose to remain in the negative and switch the story
to the idea that markets are about to crash! Or I can go positive and appeal to the emotion
of greed and focus on potential profits.
If you observe the golden rule of simplicity, good timing is easier. If you are a negative
person, find negative readers and write negative sales stories. If positive, do likewise. If
you are moody and change how you feel as you go, change your message too. All these
approaches work. The key is to have an approach and to understand why that approach will
motivate your reader and focus your sales story around that approach.
Sales Stories Made EZ
One practical way to create good well-focused sales stories is to read as many sales stories
of others as you can. I read sales pieces and tear them apart trying to understand what the
advertiser is doing. I try to look for the emotions upon which he is trying to appeal. I try
to understand the way in which the ad appeals to the emotions.
Use the efforts of others to start your sales stories. Translate existing sales stories you like.
Here is an example of how to spin a story about organic gardening, by translating one of my
financial ads.
I took my ad and changed it one paragraph at a time. Look at the sales stories, tear apart
and then put them back together again to tell a story about your product. See below what I
mean.
HEADLINE
Borrow Low-Deposit High
Borrow at 7%
Redeposit the Loan For 13%
All at the Same Bank
TRANSLATED HEADLINE
Fertilize Less-Grow More
Eliminate Chemicals
Double the Size of Your Growth
All in the Same Garden
INTRODUCTORY TEXT
Enclosed with this letter
is an issue of my newsletter
Gary Scott's WORLD REPORTS.
Though thousands pay for this
report, I have sent it to you
at my own expense and without
obligation to you.
TRANSLATED INTRODUCTORY
Enclosed with this letter
is a report on how to double
the size of your carrots and
make them ten times healthier
to eat. This is just one of
22 chapters in my exciting
new report on how to grow
organically. Though thousands
will pay full price for this
information, I have sent it
to you at my own expense and
without obligation to you.
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Get the idea? This technique can develop some sure fire sales stories. In a way, you can
get the use of brilliant selling minds free! But don't throw caution out the window, when
you translate an ad. Be sure to use ads that you see in common use. This indicates they
are successful ads. It might be dangerous to build your business around someone else's ad
that failed!
Successful sales stories reach and enhance emotions. Use the golden rule of simplicity,
study successful sales stories, then write your story from the heart and you will be well on
your way to appealing to the reader's emotions and publishing success.
This brings us to the great emotion of compassion. Have you ever seen someone you love
struggle? If the goal they are trying to attain is something you view as worthwhile, don't
you want to help? Compassion. We love sympathetic characters striving for
worthwhile goals.
Let's return to the organic vegetable garden, write a sales story for the organic report and
see how compassion can even play a role in selling organic food.
To begin, we ask, “Who do you want to read our sales story?” The answer is obviously
those who like to garden and want to eat organically grown foods. So let’s begin the story
as written by a mother and like this.
I have been into gardening for years-always felt that fresh vegetables were
great for my kids and spouse. Can you imagine the horror when I learned that
chemicals I was putting on the garden and that were in supermarket food were
poison that was killing those I loved.
I was in horror and didn't know what to do. One thing was for sure, I had to
find a way to give my family healthier food and I had to find it fast. I tried to
find a better way, but no one would listen. It seemed that no one cared. I
talked to my Doctor. He didn't have an answer. I went to the grocer and got
the same story there. I even tried calling the local health authorities, but
nobody wanted to help.
I was fraught, wanting to keep my family healthy, but could not find out what
to do. Then I found an amazing secret that beat the whole lot of them. Let
me tell you more about this secret on the very next page.
Anyone into gardening and organic growing has to be hooked!
That gardener is a sympathetic character. She is trying to help her family, her kids, her
husband, but no one will help here. The reader is on her side already! The reader wants to
rip the next page open and find out how to help!
Sympathetic characters striving toward worthwhile goals are seen in almost every book,
movie, novel, etc, you ever see. The boy gets girl, or vice versa. Love is the emotion, the
couple are the sympathetic characters. Their being together, happy, is the worthwhile
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goal. Don't believe me? Look around. Read a few novels, watch a little TV and you will
see everyone uses it! They do so because it works.
My sales pieces often use my history. I am lucky I survived an extended misguided youth
and many numerous screw-ups. This makes me a pretty sympathetic character. I did so
many things wrong, made so many errors, that it is easy to tell stories about my early
business disasters that are deserving of sympathy!
In one marketing piece I used successfully, I told how I was a college drop out, how I had
five kids and had been nearly bankrupt and how I had not been able to afford to lose my
little nest egg. I showed my weaknesses, the problems that faced me and how I was
striving to overcome them. This helped the reader maintain interest.
Emotions sell and compassion is a powerful. Be aware of the level of emotion you want
your sales story to reach. Develop sympathetic characters and have them strive for
worthwhile goals. These steps build reader interest and helps keep the reader turning the
page which is the next step in the process.
Goal #3: Keep the reader turning the page. Earlier I mentioned that sales stories are
based on fantasy. If this is true (and it is), then your sales piece should be written
just like a novel. One rule of good novel writing is to keep the reader turning the page!
Pick up any good novel and read how the author builds suspense. Your sales story must at
all times compete for the reader's attention. While your reader is reading or hearing your
sales story, other ads, a ringing telephone, TV and a million other things are trying to
attract his or her attention at same time. This is even truer when your sales story is on the
Internet. The story you send is always just one click away from not being read.
It is especially important to keep reader attention at pauses such as turning a page. People
are goal oriented. We read one sentence at a time, one paragraph at a time, one page at a
time. When a reader finishes a page, he or she has to decide to set the goal of reading the
next.
You have a big job just to get your message to the reader. You have to place the ad in a
newspaper, magazine, the mail or on the internet or something of this sort, knowing that
only a small percentage of those receiving it will stop to read. So once you have reader's
attention, you don't want let them stop! If they do, chances are they won't start up again.
There are numerous ways to keep attention.
Here are a few.
Attention Tip #1: Offer something free. Do this on the first page. Tell the reader right
up front that you are going to offer him something free later in the sales story. This helps
keep them reading as they want to find out what you are going to give him.
Attention Tip #2: Give secrets. People love to know secrets. Secrets give feelings of
hidden power. Again use the first page to explain that you will reveal secrets on following
pages.
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Attention Tip #3: Start off with valuable partial, specific details. Complete the
details later in the story.
Attention Tip #4: Break sentences at the end of a page. The reader has committed to
read the sentence. If it is a good one he or she will turn the page to finish it.
Attention Tip #5: Make the last paragraph of each page lead to the next. Let’s take
a look at the last paragraph of page one of a direct mail selling piece that worked well for
me.
“You can be rich because of the seven laws you will learn in this letter. These laws are not
man (or woman) made. They are universal laws. As such they are totally powerful, though
completely simple. They always work, always have and always will. They can enrich you
enormously, every day for the rest of your life and they are free to you! Turn page
please)..”
Does that paragraph make you want to turn the page? Do you want to know what
those universal laws are? Do you want to be enriched enormously every day for the rest of
your life? If so, the paragraph would have succeeded in getting you to turn the page.
In some selling pieces, I use every one of these techniques within the very first page.
Here is a sample introductory paragraph to show what I mean:
“Learn in this letter how to enjoy explosive profits from this mutual fund and learn three
other investment ideas right now. Gain seven important investing laws (so unknown they
are almost secret) that will assure you never worry about money again, regardless of war,
economic crisis, recession or inflation. Find out how to receive a free investment kit that
explains these seven secret laws.”
In that one paragraph, I offered something free and offered to give a secret. But the reader
has to read further for them.
That selling piece then covered a mutual fund called Vienna Invest and said:
“The fund was up 118% in just one year! $10,000 rose to $23,300! Amazing as it seems,
it's true. Vienna Invest is no get rich scheme either. Vienna's Stock Market and Vienna
Invest are very conservative. What is more they may be one of the best investments you
can own in the months ahead. I'll explain why later in this letter.”
Wow! In only two paragraphs, readers know they have to keep reading to learn seven
secret laws, get a free kit and know about Vienna Invest that’s up 118%.
The second page then slowly starts to fill the promises made in the first. However this was
an eight page sales pieces the seven laws were revealed one at a time, one secret per page
and the last secret law was only revealed in a P.S. at the end of page eight. Readers have
to read every single page to learn those seven secrets.
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Using the simple five tips above will help keep your readers turning the page, so they will
can read your entire sales story and move to action (the fifth goal). But before you can
ask your reader to act, you want to make sure the reader knows he will be satisfied.
This lesson so far has reviewed how to stress benefits at the correct level of appeal, how to
touch emotions and how to keep reader’s turning the page.
Clicking the Button
Retention can be even a greater challenge for sales stories posted at a website or sent via
email. The loss of your reader is always just one click away! Readers have a shorter
attention span on a computer and it is harder for them to find what they were reading then
if they lose your URL compared to laying a letter or pamphlet or booklet down.
Yet you can use the mouse to help retain your readers’ attention as well. First follow the
steps above. Then understand this. Use lots of clicks to reset attention.
Lots of Clicks
Our attention span is shorter at the computer than when reading in print. Yet every time we
click to a new page the attention span is reset. If you have an eight page selling letter
posted at your website instead of having one long letter have eight short letters each linked
to the next.
If you send selling stories via email, break the story up with links as well, but be sure to
make the messages at the links short and easy to load. Be sure that each link keeps the
reader moving forward.
Goal #4: Convince the reader that the story is good and based on truth. Fiction is
an acceptable part of our communication if the dramatization is based on truth. Most
readers prefer a sales story with fantasy included. Otherwise life would be boring.
Dramatization helps people learn and remember. For example we all know that it is
important to control out day to day fears, but just saying “controling your fears” is not as
potent a teacher as the story of “Chicken Little.”
Chicken Little shows us the lunacy of our fears and makes our understanding of this reality
more human and real when he runs in and screams, “the sky is falling”! (He is a pretty
sympathetic character wouldn’t you agree?) The moral of the story is a vital truth we
should all know. Yet Chicken Little (get ready for this) is as fictional as Santa.
What you do care about is whether the truth is reflected in your selling story so
that your reader will be satisfied!
If the whole of the story is fantasy it becomes a lie, scam rip-off or fraud. The way to make
sure this does not happen is to make truth the bedrock of your story. Here are tips on how
to weave this reality into the story.
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Truth Tip #1: Don't try to convince the reader that the story is true. The second you
utter the words, this story is true, you create suspicion. Instead just tell the story and
convince readers that the benefits are real! The reader wants to believe in you. He
has two conflicting emotion. His love for you makes him want to believe. His desire for
benefits wants him to believe. His fear makes him afraid to believe. You simply have to tip
the scales so he is willing to take a chance.
Truth tip #2: Use endorsements. The more the better. Use them just as written by
previous readers. Let others tell their true stories about how your product has helped them.
I use four types of endorsements in my selling stories.
First, I use excerpts from letters and comments of my readers. I choose endorsements
from as many professions as possible. In the case study, they include endorsements from
Doctors, Dentists, Investors, Lawyers, Retirees, Real Estate Brokers, etc. I include
endorsements from all over the country. If I am mailing nationwide, I'll include
endorsements from California, New York, Florida, Texas and Illinois (the largest
populations), plus an endorsement from overseas (to show how far and wide my services
reach).
Second, I use endorsements from institutional sources. I list other financial writers that
have recommended my products. Any reader of those financial writers will be more likely to
take a chance with me if they see this recommendation. If I am going to mail a selling
piece to the reader list of a newsletter or magazine, if they have ever endorsed any of my
products, I quickly point out this fact. If the reader of my sales piece subscribes to the
magazine or newsletter, chances are he believes what is written in it. If the magazine has
recommended my product, this will help believability.
Third, I use my biography as a human endorsement. I mention that I have five kids, where
I have lived overseas, what I do (paint and play the flute) how much I travel. All of this
makes me a more believable person and hence makes the story I have sent the reader
more believable.
This only works if your biography fits your focus. My products are personality products. My
products contain information about investments and my opinion of these investments. My
readers are paying mostly to read my opinion. I want the reader to trust me, to
understand me and to do this, I am as warm and open as possible. I want the reader to
know my personality.
If I were sending a sales piece to a bunch of hard nose bankers about how they could
process data faster, etc. I would not put in the data about my flute playing. They would
think I was crazy!
If I were selling to institutions, I would concentrate on other issues, my financial
background, experience record, etc. I would want them to look at my business record not
my personality.
Fourth, I mention business connections. I mention that I am a contributing editor to several
newsletters and magazines. I mention I am an advisor to a huge international bank. I
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mention that TV networks have used my product, that I have been an expert witness in
Federal court etc. The implication is that if big public institutions trust me, so should the
reader.
Truth tip #3: Convince the reader with facts and figures. My selling pieces are full of
very specific, hot, up-to-date, facts and figures, details, names and addresses, dates and
performance records in percentage and dollar terms. All these details help convince readers
I know what I am writing about. The details also help readers understand my product, as
my publications also contain many facts, figures, names and addresses.
Lots of accurate details also make the story interesting. People are smart. Our cultural
habits are such that we all deal in fantasy, but there is a fine line and almost everyone
senses it, even if they cannot vocalize it. This is why historic novels are so popular. The
stories are based on fact. Your sales story should also be. Even fairy tales are dressed up in
facts and details.
Imagine how drab "Little Red Riding Hood" would be if it were called the "Hooded Girl"!
Truth Tip #4: Keep at that sympathetic character. The sympathetic character striving
toward a worthwhile goal is doubly important. He (or she) not only keeps the reader
turning the page, but also makes the story believable, if the character is based on truth.
Admitting a weakness in the sympathetic character or product adds to the story's strength
of character. The implication is, "Hey, he admit his faults."
Here is a classic approach to creating believability from the get-go and a way to gain
endorsements at once. Admit that you are just starting. Say right up front that you have a
brand new book (report etc.) and that it is the first book you have ever published.
Let me give you an example. One client of mine heard me talk about the benefits of
publishing. He became so excited that he went to work and published a book he had always
wanted to write. This client is a private pilot. He loves to fly. He lives in Florida, and wrote
and published a book on airport restaurants for Florida.
This guy is smart. First, this procedure meant he could turn much of his flying into tax
deductible expenses. This client (as all starting publishers) didn't have any endorsements to
put in his first sales story. Here is the story that turned this liability to an advantage.
“Dear Fellow Pilot,
I recently solved a problem. In doing so, I created something unique for you that
will save you time, give you endless pleasure and perhaps one day save you from
indigestion!
However, in solving your indigestion, I have gained a headache. Now, I need
your help and want to offer you a special free gift for this assistance.
I will tell you more about this free offer in a minute, but first let me tell you the
problem I have solved for you and every other pilot in Florida.
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Most of us are pilots because we love to fly. I imagine this is your case too.
Nothing quite matches the thrill of being air born, the scenery, the sense of calm
and the feel of being above all the cares and worries below.
Most of us enjoy the practical benefits as well. The main one is enormous savings
in time and energy. With our planes we can hop across the state in record time
and at our own schedule. We avoid traffic plus the wear and tear of long trips.
But there is one frustration that often dims the glow of the fun and efficiency of
flying. It is the one factor that has bugged me more about flying than any other.
I know it ruins many flights and probably bugs you too. I tell you next page how
I have wiped out this frustration and how you can too.
On the next page, I explain this plus show how to gain more pleasure from your
flying and how you can help me-one pilot to another.
My greatest frustration is arriving hungry after a wonderful flight and not knowing
where to eat or worse, finding a greasy spoon.
What a rotten way to end a fantastic, beautiful flight. One minute you are high in
the sky, the next grounded by potential indigestion. I have had this frustration so
many times that I decided most pilots need to know where to eat.
I gave over my stomach to make this possible and have eaten in 225 restaurants
near airports. ( 94 of them were bad, 107 acceptable and 22 really great).
This research has cost me over $10,000 (if you don't count the indigestion), but
I have in my book, all the names of these restaurants, their phone numbers,
menu with prices, opening hours and instructions how to get there, plus details
how to get rental cars, rides or taxis as well!
I am sure you agree all this data would be a bargain at a mere $49 (and no
stomach aches). Imagine the benefits of knowing where to eat the minute you
arrive, how to quickly get the least expensive ride and how to call ahead and
have reservations ready.
You save hours, dollars and add enormously to the pleasure flying. For example,
let me tell you about Chalet Suzanne. Knowing this higgidly piggledy gourmet
restaurant with its own airport is worth the price of the book alone. The food
there is so good, you'll thank this book every time your remember it.
But I have a deal that is even better! You can save $20, because eliminating
your indigestion has given me a headache and I need your help. I am a pilot not
a writer or a publisher. Knowing this, I decided to write this book because I
thought all of us needed it. I stepped out in good faith and did this, even though
I have to admit, I was darned nervous writing a book. It was just like my first
solo flight. Suddenly I was off the ground and no one to help me get back down!
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But, just like that solo flight, I made it and think the book is really great. I am
pleased but guess I need some assurance and a little help. First, I really need
some pilots like yourself to read my book and tell me if they like it as much as I
do. Second, I need some endorsements to help me get this book sold. It is the
only way I can recover the time and money I have spent collecting all this
valuable information.
I want to write a second book right away, all about airports in Georgia. If that
works as well, I intend to cover every state, so eventually anywhere you fly, you
eat well too! This is why I need your help and want to offer you a $20 savings
and a free report on the next page.
I would like to offer you a $20 savings and a free report for helping me. I have
written my book, Guide To Florida's Airport Restaurants and am selling it for $49.
But in this letter, I am offering it to you at the discount price of only $29 (you
save $20). In return, I ask only that you read it and return a letter telling me
what the book did for you.
As I said, I'm a little nervous, this being my first book, so your honest comments
will help me get over the jitters. It will help me make my next book better as
well. This is important for you because I also want to offer you as my thanks for
your help, my next report, Guide to Georgia's Airport Restaurants. This $49
value (when I have finished writing it) will be yours simply for sending me your
honest comments about my book. I don't mind constructive criticism either. As I
said, this is my first book and I want each guide I write to be better and better.
After all none of us want someone flying near us who is distracted by indigestion
or hunger!
In all, you gain $98 worth of books, avoid indigestion forever and will be able to
amaze your family, friends and fellow pilots by always knowing where to go for
the best in airport cuisine! All this for just $29 and your help will be very much
appreciated.
There is more! I need your help and want you to avoid digestion. I want you to
get more pleasure from flying. I also want you to rest easy that the $29 you
send me is the best deal you have had since your last flight. So I am giving you
an iron clad, no fuss guarantee.
As one pilot to another, I promise that if for any reason whatsoever you are not
satisfied with my book, return it and I will send you an immediate and full refund.
Plus, I'll throw in a packet of tums as well. With some of the bad restaurants out
there, you’ll need them! That's fair enough don't you agree?
Please act today. I need your help now and this offer is limited. Let me make
your flying more pleasant and save $69 in the process. Send the coupon below
and your check for $29 payable to Flight Guide right away. Good flying and good
eating!
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P.S. One other way you can help me is let me know of any good restaurant near
any airport anywhere in the country. This will help me do more and more of
these books. If you act now and buy my first book, I will give you my second
book free (total $69 savings) plus a 10% discount on future books!”
I hoped in this sales story we were able to project that the writer had a problem and needed
help. We tried to create an aura of honesty and enhance the reader's emotions of
sympathy. We wanted the reader to see a sympathetic character striving towards a
worthwhile goal.
The letter also stresses that the reader will derive many benefits: time saved, enjoyable
meals, prestige among his friends and family and even greater safety in the air.
It uses the first page to promise of benefits and something free later in the letter. The last
paragraph of the first page also leads the reader to turn the page.
Finally the letter asks the reader for help, offers him savings and a free book if he sends in
his $29. Finally, the P.S. urges the reader to action one final time and offers an even
further incentive for the reader to act.
In this case, we hope that the sales story turned the writer's weakness (the fact that this
was his very first book) into a strength. It also set up the writer for endorsements and if
the customer is satisfied sets up future sales with the 10% discount!
This leads us to the fifth goal of the sales piece.
Goal #5: Move the reader to action. The final goal of the sales story is to move the
reader to action. Many publishers use a multitude of techniques ranging from pasting
stamps on a box to providing tear out self-addressed envelopes. Others urge the reader to
call a toll free telephone.
I do not use any of these techniques.
There are several techniques I do use. First, I offer the reader something special if he buys
my product. It may be a FREE gift or premium or it may be a financial saving. In some
cases it may be both or more.
Second, I let my reader make a choice. My experience has been that this brings the sales
piece three benefits. The first benefit is being able to offer two products at a different price.
Many of my sales pieces offer both a book and a seminar as an example. The seminar costs
$499, the book $49. Lots of the people who read the letter just will not (due to lack of
money, time or because my letter did not enhance enough of their emotions) send me the
$499. They might send the $49.
This creates a second benefit. I can offer the book free to anyone who signs up for the
seminar. The $49 price on the book cements the value of the book. The reader is either
going to send $49 or attend the seminar to get the book.
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The power of this fact was brought home to me in a marketing piece where I tested this
approach offering a $99 newsletter and three reports. I used two sales pieces offering the
three reports at both $29 and $49. One test piece gave the reader a choice of
sending me $29 or $99. The other gave the $49/$99 option.
If the reader sent $99, he received the $29 (or $49) value three reports free. The piece
was the same in every other way. In the $49/$99 option more than twice as many readers
sent in the $99! The $49 FREE incentive struck a greater emotion than the $29 FREE
incentive.
The third benefit is that giving the reader a choice allows me to offer a wider range of
benefits in one sales piece. With higher printing, postage and handling costs, publishers
who reach out to readers must use every tactic they can to reach more refined audiences.
If I can create a sales story that offers two or three products I broaden the focus of my
sales story.
There is a word of caution about giving a choice. Two of my most spectacular failures came
from offering too many choices. I once wrote a monster 24 page selling piece that was a
catalogue for all the products I offered. In the other case, it was a shorter catalogue of
seminars. These pieces offered many choices. Neither were very successful. I believe that
offering more than two or three choices, (the limit I now impose on myself) increases the
chances of confusing your reader. Confusion enhances the emotion of fear and kills the
selling process dead!
Giving choice is a great technique but the choices must be simple and crystal clear. Stick to
this formula and choice giving can increase sales.
Another technique to move the reader to action is to simply ask in the letter for them to act
right away. I normally include this request twice.
Fourth, I include an order form in each of my letters. If my space is limited, such as in half
page ads or classifieds, I drop this, but this is contrary to many expert opinions that always
advise providing a coupon or order form.
Fifth, I move the reader to action whenever possible by setting time or size limits. For
example, when I am selling seminars, I always check to see how many luxury rooms the
hotel has and often urge the readers to sign up early to assure they will get a luxury room.
I offer space on a first come-first served basis. I often limit the number of spaces or
editions, or limit the time the offer is valid.
The most effective way urge the reader to act is by providing products that contain hot,
fresh usable, NOW information. Tell the reader it may be too late to take action on the
data if they delay. This is the most powerful way to get the reader to act now.
Once you urge the reader to act, you have completed the goals of your sales story, which
are: stress benefits, get the page turned, appeal to emotions, convince that benefits are real
and urge the reader to act.
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Put these five forces to work in your sales story, make it interesting, lively and tuned to the
times and you will have every likelihood of seeing lots of profitable sales.
Case Study
This study shows how the mood of markets change. One selling piece I wrote to sell my
newsletter Fund Help International (FHI) made a lot of money, but it taught me lessons as
well.
FHI was my second newsletter. World Reports was the flagship monthly publication and I
had started this second newsletter for two reasons. First, I had information I wanted to
share about currencies, stock markets and mutual funds around the world. I was sure this
information could improve many of my readers' lives. Second this information was too
expensive to put into my normal $99 a year monthly newsletter. It was also much more
complicated than the data in the other newsletter.
Having a second newsletter also made merchandising sense to me. Adding the data to my
first newsletter would have increased its cost and priced me out of the market where I
wanted to be. But it would be easy to let buyers of my first newsletter know I had a
second newsletter. Those who could use this more complicated data and who were willing
to spend more each year could subscribe to both. Also, some readers who might find the
data in my first newsletter to simple might want just the second FHI monthly.
This meant that rather than having one product at $199, (both newsletters combined) I
could sell three options, one at $99 (just WORLD REPORTS), one at $149 (just FHI) and one
at $248 (both WORLD REPORTS and FHI).
So FHI started as a product that was meant to be sold (at $149) only to those who bought
my first newsletter. The marketing piece this case study examines changed this and at
times, this second letter has generated higher revenues and profits than the first.
This second newsletter fit into my overall marketing plan, which was to always have
something more (hopefully bigger and better) to sell. This tactic was based around my belief
that my market was limited. It was expensive for me to reach new readers. I wanted to
sell more to existing readers.
I had other products, “The Global Fund Survey" which sold for $79, the $99 a year "WORLD
REPORTS" and $499 International Investment & Business Courses". The $149 FHI
publication added an extra product at a different price range that readers of the $79, $99
and $499 product could buy.
It grew into much more than this, mainly because of the sales piece in this study. While
publishing the newsletter, one idea I came across was the hot Vienna stock market. I
researched Vienna mutual funds and found that only one was really available. It was called
Vienna Invest. I recommended it, and my timing was just perfect. This was one of
those times when everything worked out so well and one ended up making me look like a
hero. You sling enough mud and sometimes it sticks.
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I decided to try a marketing piece for FHI and decided to toot my horn about this
phenomenal recommendation I had made. However, I kept my priorities very clear when I
wrote this letter. My belief was that if my sales piece overstated potential profits, I would
attract the wrong type of reader. FHI was mainly about conserving capital not making huge
gains.
We wanted to spend our time for producing and delivering the newsletters, not to
administer unhappy readers.
Based on this belief, I tooted my horn in the headline to capture the readers' attention. I
stress how the reader could reap enormous gains in the first three paragraphs but then back
off very quickly from the horn tooting element.
I had given a great deal of thought to what I really had to offer to my and decided it was a
conservative (not get rich quick) investment philosophy. Thus I decided to stress the
benefits of the philosophy rather than making money.
In the fourth paragraph I stressed benefits of seven investment laws that helped readers
sleep better at night. Then I went on in the next paragraphs to say that the product was
simple and easy to use, was exclusive (I almost required a face to face interview-the almost
acknowledged fantasy) and I offered a FREE report.
In this selling piece, I told a story. Good copywriters stress the importance of bringing the
sales piece to life. Telling stories helps do this. In the story, I weaved the seven
investment laws, reader endorsements, more horn tooting (over another good
recommendation).
I did this again and again for six pages, then gave a sample of the product itself (the FHI
Model Portfolio). I then put in the institutional image and gave the reader more than he
ever expected. I give him the names and addresses of a bank, attorney and mutual fund
manager that they could use even if they did not buy the newsletter.
It was my belief that when you give a reader something he does not expect, you make
yourself vulnerable. When you do this you are saying to the reader, I trust you! When you
trust others, most will return this trust. Those who cannot trust are usually not those you
want as readers anyway.
The letter finishes with a money back guarantee, a P.S. stressing one more benefit of the
product (it is fun). Then I end with a rash of genuine customer endorsements. I selected
endorsements from a range of professions and geographical areas that matched those who
will be reading the publication.
Specific details were important in that selling piece. There are three types of lies: lies,
damned lies and statistics. This is true because of the way people react to statistics! They
want to see facts and figures (presented in an interesting way). In this sales piece, I weave
the specifics right into the story. It gives the reader the hard core data they want to see
- 121 -
and tells them that they will get lots of specific information in the product. The story keeps
the reader moving along. It keeps him interested to see what will happen next.
I mailed that marketing piece to my 20,000 mailing list and brought back over $105,000.
This was a phenomenal return.
This was such a good return that I tried mailing to a list of 5,000. Over $12,000 came in.
Not as good as my list but still really great. So I rented 30,000 more names from the same
list. The mailing bombed.
This taught me a valuable lesson. Some list owners load a small list with hot names but the
balance of their readers are not so hot. They do this to suck in second orders from excited
mailers. That list owner may have tricked me. (In the lesson explaining sources of lists we
look at ways to avoid this problem.)
Or the national psyche may have changed. This is most likely the case. The U.S. dollar had
strengthened and this may have altered the mood of investors.
Third, other marketing pieces may have been mailed to that list which affected the results.
The psyche of the list was temporarily altered.
The lesson learned: Be very careful every time you market. When selling to the masses,
one must be humble at all times. The market can change very quickly. Always use caution.
Always budget your mailings. Never mail more than you can afford to lose! Never spend
your money until you have it! There are huge factors you can never see when you do a
mailing or run an ad.
Always limit your risk. Never count on the next mailing doing exactly the same as the last.
Many more lessons were to be learned after this affair. After the flop on that rollout, I
chose not to mail this piece to outside lists. Many marketers would have decided differently.
This is a market piece that properly tuned might have built the newsletter into a huge
international concern. All that was required was additional testing, maybe a little pushing
and a little extra risk. I chose to pass on this. That decision was based on our overall
goals.
About six months later, I tried the piece again to my own list that had previously worked so
well. I was a bit wiser now and made several changes. During the time that had elapsed
the U.S. dollar had been strong which meant in U.S. dollar terms, non-dollar investments
had been weak. Thus the model portfolios I had mentioned in the first letter were not as
attractive at this stage. I felt the selling power would be reduced if the data in this letter
was not fresh, so in the second piece I updated this information. I mailed to 10,000. The
results were outstanding! My $5,000 investment brought back over $30,000.
But let me be honest, luck had stepped in. This new mailing had a headline, “Beware of
Market as the Dollar Shifts.” Just at that time the stock market and dollar had a mini crash!
I could not have asked for better luck. I could not have dreamed of a better support from
the market.
- 122 -
I moved forward with this piece recognizing that the current fresh nature of that marketing
letter had a double edged sword. Had the market and U.S. dollar risen strongly just as this
letter went out, the piece may not have worked as well.
In conclusion, it can pay to toot your product's horn, but the tooting does not have to be too
loud! And be careful not to get caught n the fantasy of your own sales story. It pays to
keep your selling piece fresh and full of up-to-date details. It pays to give lots of
endorsements. It pays to offer a no questions asked guarantee. Wrap all this in an
interesting story describing benefits of a worthwhile product and give a reason why this
benefit is available now. Do all this and you should have a success, but as this study shows
luck matters as well. Sometimes success will be outstanding. Other times not.
Assignment
Write the first draft of a selling story for the product. Begin this by translating
your selling story from another selling story.
See below as an example how I used the sales story for the Pilots’ Restaurant Guide in this
lesson to translate a sales story for my Flee Flea report.
Dear Fellow Pet Owner,
I recently solved a problem. In doing so, I created something unique for you that
will save you time, give you endless pleasure and perhaps one day save you from
indigestion!
I recently solved a problem for my pet. In doing so, I created something
unique for you that will save you time, give your pet endless relief and
perhaps even extend your dog or cats life!
However, in solving your indigestion, I have gained a headache. Now, I need
your help and want to offer you a special free gift for this assistance.
However, in solving my pet’s flea problem, I have created a new problem
of my own. Now, I need your help and want to offer you a special free
gift for this assistance.
I will tell you more about this free offer in a minute, but first let me tell you the
problem I have solved for you and every other pet owner in Florida.
Assignment #2
Make the first draft of your selling story be as long as you like. Then break this
long story into numerous short linked stories that would be suitable for Website
marketing. At the end of each break in the story, give the reader a chance to
immediately go to the order form or to continue.
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See how I did this with the Ida Story below:
A midnight breeze kisses blackened hemlock and pine in the deep
embrace of a full amber moon. Dark clouds race and churn the
lunar cream that casts chilled shadows over the cemetery just
ahead.
Blue Ridge North Carolina. I was standing in a pitch black cemetery near
midnight. This may not seem the norm but I have a friend who forced me. Ida is
her name and secrets she shares are the core of good health, energy and long
life. These are secrets for weight loss, stress reduction and longevity. Ida has
proven this fact by living to be 115! I am cold and a little afraid, but I am here so
I can share these secrets with you.
These secrets are hidden information on weight loss, stress reduction and
longevity.
There are places of purity and rejuvenation, where the body and mind can
energize rest and heal. One is Merrily Farms, the 290 acre sanctuary of this
magazine, situated deep in the forests of the Blue Ridge.
The headstones in a family cemetery there say it all. John reached age 91 and
his wife, Jill 95. Two more were aged 86 and 100. And Ida lived 115 years,
born 1794 to 1909. Imagine living through three centuries!
These were mountain farmers without access to doctors, hospitals or drugs. They
thrived on fresh air, pure spring water, fresh organic food, healthy labor and folk
secrets of energy and good health and thus lived long.
We invite you to learn these Blue Ridge health secrets and much more as you
enjoy three to six days of simplicity, purity and rejuvenation at one of three
upcoming Wellness Weekends conducted this July, August and September. You
can go to the order form here or keep reading.
Break #1
Live as you Learn Secrets of Long Life And GOOD HEALTH.
- 124 -
Wellness Weekends immerse you in a lifestyle garnered by wise
people over centuries. Join us and live these ideas as you learn.
For example during Wellness Weekend you eat in easy, simple, almost
unknown, ways that cut caloric intake, the only scientifically proven way to
increase longevity. Health seekers staying at the farm report they eat
more than ever but lose weight and reduce inches in as little as three
days!
You won’t be eating celery, lettuce and cardboard tasting crisp bread either. Part
of wellness is enjoying food! You learn how to prepare food so it’s more
nourishing and filling with herbs and spices that modulate blood sugar levels so
hunger fades away. One example of spice energization uses ginger, cinnamon
and cloves. Taken in correct amounts and blends, at the right time, they crank
the metabolism and calm the appetite.
You get and enjoy recipes for easy-to-buy-at-the-supermarket foods such as
protein balanced pancakes with organic panella-canela syrup, a delicious, sweet
meal that fills as it builds the calorie burning process. Other recipes include
Coddle Yourself Egg-High Protein Country Cottage Pie-Low Carb-Veggie Chile &
Spaghetti- Weightless Bread-High Mountain Pure Protein Quinoa Couscous-Better
Oatmeal of Steel- Several Soups for Super Strength-Berry Good Crunch and
Waist Less Apple Crumble.
You will eat well, lose weight ad learn many more secrets such as unlocking the
mystery of Key Muscles. You can go to the order form here or keep reading.
Break #2
Unlock the Mystery of Key Muscles
Another virtually unknown weight control trick is a simple exercise that energizes
and coordinates digestive systems by exercising key muscles as we eat! When
you energize these muscles, they direct the entire body to regulate burning of
sugars and fat.
Schedule
Each day you enjoy three, seven step cycles of oxygenation,
coordination, purification, energization, education, occupation and
relaxation. This schedule includes:
Oxygenation-Coordination: Early deep woods trail walks are followed by gentle
Andean, Tibetan and Indian exercises that open energy centers and awakens key
muscles. Exercises include the Llama Walk, Lizard Crawl and the Warrior's Bow
followed by key muscle activators. Optional creek plunges (or showers) induce
oxygenated blood into vital organs.
- 125 -
Purification: Cleansing steam baths, soaks in sacred Andean purification herbs
and purifying teas leave the body, hair and mind clean, clear and aromatic.
Energization: Eat balanced, correctly prepared organic food and drink purifying
herbal teas.
Occupation: Toil in physical labor ranging from gardening and animal care to
path building and clearing woods.
Relaxation: Meditation, hammocking, wet dew labyrinth walks, massage and
soaking in the 105 degree pure spring waters of Indian Sacred Waters are five
ways you relieve stress.
You can ejnoy weight loss, better health and all the energy benefits of this
program at am amazingly lower price than just staying in a motel. For details on
how to get FREE FOOD and LODGING go to the order form here or continue
reading.
Break #3
Choose a Wellness Weekend or a Week! Arrive Thursday afternoon
and depart Sunday. Or choose to stay for advanced sessions from Sunday
through Tuesday.
Low cost. Just $499! ($749 for two sharing a room or $998 for the week $1,398 for two sharing a room). Yet here is the best part….
FREE Food and Lodging
We want to share the purity of our sanctuary and invite you to be our guest. We
will feed and house you in one of our rustic, but super comfortable farmhouses or
cabins, all without additional charge. See accommodations at
www.littlehorsecreek.com
Join us amidst the deep woods. Stroll in the fine cream of an amber forest moon.
Dance in innocent gardens with magical fireflies. Soak in the mystical heated
waters of the historic Indian Springs. Sip pure water and savor clean air all for
good health.
Each session of Wellness Weekend and Week is strictly limited. Reserve your
place online now.
- 126 -
Lesson Nine
Forms of Selling
Mists of early morn lay in thin sheets over the Royal Ducal Golf Club...masking long
lines of poplar, ash and fir that outline the fairway. Merri and I at peace in the
waking dawn, stroll on acres of green, listening to a morning chorus as the birds
sing in the early dew. We talk about how wonderful knowing the world is and
share our thoughts about this unique little city...Luxembourg.
Naples, Florida, I was sitting at my desk. As I was writing the headline above for the
issue of a new newsletter I had just started called WORLD REPORTS. When I started it, I
created a unique format which I use to this day in many of my reports
The format is uniquely me, Gary Scott, as is the format of all my products and selling
pieces.
Your format should be uniquely you.
This lesson looks at how to choose forms of selling for your sales story and how to integrate
the form you choose into the format of your publication.
The form is the sales piece and media in which the sales story is placed. A direct mail letter
is a form of selling. An Internet website is a form of selling. A cassette tape that contains a
sales story is a form of selling. Classified advertisements are forms of selling. Even a T.V.
talk show infomercial is a form of selling.
Choosing the form of selling takes place when you focus your product. The form usually
easily and naturally shows itself during the marketing process. The form is normally
selected by thought first and then proven through trial, error and testing.
The choice of form can be influenced by five factors.
•
Form Factor # 1: The reader’s physical location.
•
Form Factor # 2: Your graphic needs.
•
Form Factor # 3: The price of the product.
•
Form Factor # 4: Your budget in time and money.
•
Form Factor # 5: Your experience in the media.
The first step in the form choosing process is reviewing your customer and knowing where
he can be reached.
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Take my other newsletter FHI as an example. This publication tracked international stock
markets, as an example. If I had chosen a booth at a farmer’s market as the form of selling
for this publication, I would probably have failed. People that go to markets don't do so to
find out about international stock markets.
Even if they had an interest in the product, it is unlikely they would have been in the mood
at the market to receive my message.
However, when Merri and I go to the farmer’s markets every weekend to buy fresh fruit and
vegetables I notice a fellow, I'll call him Eddy, who sells cassette tapes of music there….his
music. Eddy is a musician and he plays a very complicated keyboard instrument that seems
to make music in every variation I imagine is possible. He drags this musical machine to
the market and plays there. People at the market seem to admire his musical skills and buy
his tapes. I don’t admire his music, but I like his marketing skills. I have watched him sell a
lot of tapes.
That organ player's form of selling is a personal presentation at a market stall. That is a
bad form for a publisher of investment reports, but it works for Eddy and I bet cookbooks,
especially ones with Old Fashioned Home Cooking Recipes would do well! I bet that
publications on arts and crafts would sell.
Understanding forms of selling is so important that a publishing product can actually be
created backwards, starting from the form.
Let's go hang around this market for a moment longer to see what I mean. Publishers can
create products based just around markets. Imagine titles, like “How to Bargain at Markets,
Auctions and Other Places" or “50 Recipes for Farmer’s Market Food".
Such books would sell from market stalls. You can create publications to sell just at
markets and sell them yourself. Or go to many markets and sell wholesale to vendors.
Here is an interesting exercise for publishers. Get in the habit of looking at locations
as forms of sale. Wherever you are, stop and ask yourself what types of publication might
be sold or distributed. For example in gas stations maps are sold, plus books on travel and
free motel guides are distributed. What could you sell in a hospital lobby or in a motel?
Every place of business is a focal point for some form of interest. Can you turn that interest
into sales?
Take, as another example, the book about airport restaurants reviewed last lesson. The
readers of this book will most likely be private pilots. One place to reach them is at airport
FBOs (fixed based operators) where private planes land.
A publisher who displays this book at these FBOs will probably do well. The selling form
would be a retail outlet at a private airport.
A stall at an air show would also be a good selling form.
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Another place to reach private pilots is in magazines, books and other publications about
airplanes and flying. Advertisements and inserts in such publications would be logical forms
of selling.
Another place to reach pilots is at their home. The publisher of the book could get a list of
home addresses of private pilots in Florida. Even better, he may want to rent lists of
subscribers to magazines and publications about airplanes and pilots.
While on the subject of list rentals, it is worth mentioning an important point about renting
them. There are two types of lists, compiled lists and response lists.
Compiled lists are lists of people compiled from public records. You can get lists of doctors,
pilots, home owners, large investors, etc. These lists are normally useless! A compiled list
tells you something about the people on that list but does not tell the most important thing;
will the names on this list buy something through the mail or from an ad! It does not tell
you if they are still interested in flying either.
Response lists tell you much more. These are lists of people who have spent money buying
something related to the focus you offer. This tells you first that they are still interested in
flying, but more important, they are willing to spend money on flying!
In the case of the pilot seeking publisher, he rented lists of recent subscribers to flying and
airplane magazines, etc. rather than just lists of pilots.
He also placed the books for sale at restaurants and shops near FBOs. Though a restaurant
is an unorthodox place to sell books, in this case, the book, airport, restaurant or shops and
their proximity to the airport are all so in focus that a display there would probably be an
effective form of selling, if private pilots frequented the establishment. A restaurant miles
from an airport would probably be useless (unless it was located next to a place where pilots
had to take their flying exam or something of that nature).
In the early years of my financial publishing business my readers were interested in global
investing and being international. The emphasis I looked for was international, not
investing. When I placed my selling message in publications about international travel, they
usually succeeded. In publication about local investing they usually lost money. The idea of
investing internationally was too frightening for the general population. There were too
many negative emotions to neutralize and too few positive emotions to enhance.
For example, when I advertised in the Wall Street Journal I failed. When I advertised to
compiled lists of Doctors, Dentists and large investors, I failed. I tried advertisements in a
magazine called Doctor's Economics. It failed.
As your reader list grows, you will learn a lot about who your clients are. This observation
will lead you to finding new forms of selling. For example, I noticed over a number of years
that I had a high number of chiropractors that buy my publications. Thus I tried the same
ad that failed in Doctor’s Economics in Chiropractors Economics magazine and it worked.
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What does being a chiropractor have to do with being international? In the end, I decided
that chiropractors were less traditionally oriented. Their profession has not been as deeply
institutionalized in the American way of life (for example, the U.S. government has a
Surgeon General, not a Chiropractic General).
This led me to wonder if other publications that catered to non-institutional thinkers might
also be focused for my publications. I tried an ad in Reason, a political magazine for the
Libertarian party and it worked. Thus I was able to add a new dimension to my focus.
My focus became “those interested in being international and those who were
non-traditional thinkers”!
Then I noticed something else about my readers. I not only seemed to have a
disproportionate of chiropractors, I also had an unusually high level of
southerners and Jewish people. So I could now increase my focus to “those
interested in being international and those who were non-traditional thinkers, and Jewish
people and southerners.
Magic comes into publishing when we can connect dots when I asked, what do all
of these have in common? This took me quite some time to figure. They had all
been treated as second class citizens at one time or the other. They had all been
beaten up by administrations of institutions in authority. They were perhaps less
trusting of the establishment?
This understanding allowed me to expand redefine my focus once again.
Vital Publishing Point
Definition of focus is vital to a writer and publisher’s success. A tight focus leads to higher
sales per selling dollar spent which results in a better chance for higher profits. For many
years I focused entirely on readers interested in international investing. I placed all my
marketing efforts on finding media that reached this type of person.
I did not look for ways to expand the focus of my product. For example, there
were thousands of financial publications where I could advertise, but they did not
have an international flavor. Had I chosen to expand my focus and advertised in
these publications, I would have had to drop the international element to make
ads work. The international aspect was what made my publications unique. There
were tens of thousands of huge firms offering information about local investments.
Had I given up that uniqueness I would have been a midget competing with
giants. This is not the formula for high profits.
A key to profitability in a small publishing business is to keep a unique focus!
In the early years of my publishing career, I kept looking for ways to find forms of selling
that worked with big lists. Then it finally dawned on me that staying small is what made our
business so profitable! Now I look for small effective lists and small effective publications
that I can use again and again.
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When I find such a publication that has a focus that appears to fit mine, I either market to a
list of the subscribers of that publication or advertise in that publication. Sometimes I do
both.
In some magazines I place classifieds and display ads, plus mail to their email and printed
lists. All four forms work well for me in publications about international travel and
investments.
Direct Mail Is One Form for Small Business
My original experience was mainly using direct mail. Then almost a decade ago I switched to
favoring the computer and internet. I favor these forms, though as I update this course, I
am now engaged in running a series of space ads in magazines with a healthy living focus
(more on this in a later lesson).
Direct mail is especially well suited for small publishing firms, because you can really focus
your selling efforts to small extremely relevant lists. One can start very small and be highly
selective about who the selling message reaches. (We also discuss in a later lesson the
wonderful world of the net.)
Also, I like direct mail, from a graphical point of view. Direct mail letters are easy and the
least expensive forms to use when starting. Direct mail can be easy to put together and
when your customer gets the sales letter he is not as likely to compare it with other offers
for competitive products.
However if you sell in a magazine and place poorly designed ads that run alongside well
prepared ads, your ads will look cheap. This reflects poorly on the quality of your product.
The ad might still work, but could work against success.
Personal Presentation is a Good Form for Small Business.
Personal presentation has a logical place in business. Especially if a person is perusing
passion and enthusiasm in a personal presentation, sales can be enhanced. Plus people
want to meet people. This is why I do book signings, seminars and radio interviews to sell
books.
There is an even more important reason for making personal presentations. This is a good
way to get to know your reader. It is as important to know and have a feel for your reader.
No form of selling brings you closer contact.
Though I put on seminars for profit, even if they did not bring extra income, even though
they take time and can be hard and stressful, I would do them because they keep me in
touch with those who are read my publications!
This process helps me learn and stay abreast of my readers’ thoughts, wants, needs, hopes
and desires. It allows me to put the reader first, which is the ultimate key to publishing
success.
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More on Graphics
We looked briefly at graphics earlier in this course and graphics is the second factor to
consider in the form of selling.
Choosing your graphics is the second step in the form selection process.
As mentioned, I am graphically challenged. I do not spend a great time or effort on
graphics. I do not spend a lot on my sales piece graphics, or on my product graphics.
Graphics is the least
important element in my format. To other publishers this aspect can be most important,
depending on the product and the publisher.
In my particular business, graphics in selling is equivalent to gravity in quantum science. It
is such a weak force that it has little effect on any one particular point. Yet its accumulative
effect is enormous.
My graphics are not special. They are what I call a Ham and Eggs style. They are plain and
simple. But so is my thinking and my writing and so though my graphics are simple in form,
they do provide a function. I hope they provide the image of a home-spun honesty which is
a powerful selling tool in this day and age.
I doubt that many people buy my products the first time they are introduced to them
because of graphics. But make no mistake, after reading one or two of my selling pieces
and/or reports, they always know which publications are mine!
Graphics can create a brand and I use my graphics as a form of identification and to set a
mood, a tone and imply a philosophy. I also choose graphics that are easy to work with on
tight deadlines. Our international publishing business was selling fresh, hot up-to-date
information. To get this produced fast was the most important job. Dealing with artists and
a tight deadline can add stress. I use graphics that I can deliver straight from my computer
to the printer.
This can help keep graphic costs down and I have to be honest the high cost of artists was
one reason I avoided them. When working on a ten to one margin (which my selling costs
force me to do) every dollar spent on graphic added a ten dollar price increase for my
reader.
I am far more cautious with my readers' money than my own! (I hope you will be as well).
I believe a $10 difference in price is usually more important than a questionable upgrade in
graphics.
I am also graphically cost conscious as a small businessman because many of my products
are produced in small batches. They have to be changed often and quickly. Good graphics
for a small print run costs the same as for a large run. This pushes the cost per unit sky
high. Remember my cost per unit gets multiplied by ten before it reaches the buyer!
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My graphics are focused with my product-plain, simple, highly usable, no nonsense and
factual. What you see is what you get. My graphics are very functional. In my business
this is O.K. They would not be O.K. in a magazine about fashion or art or fine jewelry.
Deciding on your graphics and how they relate to your reader (both in your selling piece and
your product) relates to the age old architectural question of form versus function.
The graphics do not need to turn on the customer, the selling story does that. All the
graphics really have to do is not get in the way of the story. If for example, you are sending
out an ad or
mailing piece about how to get rich, if it is printed too sloppily on really cheap paper, the
poor look will conflict with the rich message. What Merri and I always did though was to
mention at the bottom of our mailings that our printing was on recycled paper and our inks
were soy. This we felt was consistent with our beliefs and messages.
Having said all this, today graphics are much easier to create than they used to be.
Publishers can buy the rights to use thousands of computerized images and can test what
they look like on their computer. Because we all work on computers now, typesetters are
no longer relevant. We give our completed text to layout artists and no longer have the
arduous task of checking to make sure the typesetter correctly entered the text.
This is one reason why Merri and I re-entered the magazine business. Before we began our
no graphics newsletter business, Merri was executive editor of several large and successful
magazines. She was stuck in the graphics-deadline fray continually. “Never again!” she
vowed. Yet here we are back in the magazine business because the graphics end of the
business is so much easier.
Yet to me, Plain Jane and unique is the best formula for the success of a small publishing
business. There are instances where part of the selling story requires extensive graphics
but unless graphics has a vital function in your message, spend as little time and as little
money on them as you can.
Concentrate your energy and cash on marketing and selling instead.
My advice for those just starting, is avoid publications that require top graphics (in the
product or selling piece) in the beginning, unless you have expertise in this field.
The graphics in your selling piece should match the graphics of your product. The graphics
of your product should match the needs and desires of your customer. Your graphics and
your form should also match the price of your product.
Price is the third factor to consider when selecting your form. Price needs to match your
market and the publication. As a general rule, the higher priced markets require a
more affluent market and the more you need to say about it in your selling story.
Thus the form for expensive publications may be longer selling messages aimed at
a more defined numbers of customers.
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The best forms of selling for higher priced publications or often direct mail,
infomercials, personal presentation. These forms give a greater ability to explain
the value of the publication. For example, one of my publications, a course
“International Business Made EZ” sells for $299 but can literally change a person’s
life. It can guide readers to a new, exciting and global life and enhance their
affluence. This would be hard to sell in just a few words and if this course sold for
$19.95 its credibility would suffer. So it is sold in an extensive ezine
advertisement over the net or in a direct mail letter.
The general assumption in pricing strategy is that lowered prices for a publication
will bring more sales. This is not always true! Price creates value so let’s redefine
the publishing price strategy right now. Price affects the size of your market, but
every publishing form has an inherent price expectation based around a traditional
norm.
Cloth bound books sold in a book store are expected to sell for about $19.95 to
$29.95. Paperbacks sell from $4.95 to $7.95. There is a larger market for
paperbacks than cloth bound books. However if the price varies for either there
must be a story that accompanies this. If a cloth bound book costs $39.95 instead
of $29.95. There must be a reason that people will pay the higher price and this
reasoning must be sold. If cloth bound books sell at $9.95 instead of $19.95,
there must be a reason and it must be sold. The selling story may be as short as
“inventory clear out”, but this is a sales story!
Let’s say that you decide to sell books based mainly on price (I do not suggest
this). Few of us are magicians. Pricing of publications is standard for a reason.
Everyone has about the same expenses such as intellectual costs, paper, printing,
distribution, overhead and hopefully profit. You would have to do something other
publishers do not, to reduce price and not go broke. Perhaps you discover you can
use ultra thin, cheaper paper. Your selling pitch may be, “get your books from us
on ultra thin paper and save half”. This will not necessarily increase sales. This
pricing strategy will serve a market (as do paperbacks) for people who want to
read a book one time and give it a toss. Just because you have the lowest price
does not mean everyone will buy your publication.
This is just like cars. Assume everyone would like to own the most expensive car
in town if it suits his needs and, if money was no object. Then understand that
money is an object for all but a very few. Who is your market? What can they
afford? Where can they be reached? What is their mood?
The market for my $299 course International Business Made EZ are people who
love global travel. So most have a little money. Airplane tickets cost. If they can
afford to fly New York, London (or wherever) and if they want to do it again and
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again via their own international business, they can scratch around and come up
with 299 bucks. If not they have no business with the report anyway.
Lowering price (or raising) would not necessarily sell more of the courses unless
value had been built in the minds of readers and unless there was a good story
explaining why the price had been temporarily reduced or was about to be raised.
Otherwise reducing price could lower the number of sales.
If I determine that there are sufficient numbers of people interested in having an
international business who can afford $299, I have a pricing strategy for the
publication. Then I have to ask, Where can I reach these people? How can I
explain why this price is well worth the benefits?
The answer by the way is I would rent lists of people who have paid to get
information about international travel. I would mail a selling letter (or email
message) focusing on how much I enjoy traveling globally in my business and how
they can too.
My market and the price expectations of the market help determine the form of
both my publication and of my selling piece.
The fourth step in selecting your selling form is to focus on your own unique position of
time, capital and experience.
Keeping your budget and experience in mind is a practical step when determining
your form of sale. No good wanting a $100,000 T.V. infomercial when you have a
$1,000 ad budget to start.
This is the step where advertising agents and marketing consultants may try to
lead you astray. Some purported marketing experts, will tell you how important it
is to use long copy (a long selling story). They will show you possibilities of full
page, four color ads. They will show the importance of testing four direct mail
pieces at once. They will expound on the value of high class art form, printed
envelopes, high quality art paper and a multitude of other ideas.
What they fail to ask is the most important question...Do you have the experience, time and
money to do this right? If you're going to capitalize a huge publishing company and have
already been publishing, by all means do so. Put up the money, hire experienced staff and
sell away. If you are lucky and if your staff does their job, you will make a fortune.
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If on the other hand, you are starting a small publishing business and plan to build it, one
step at a time, match your selling techniques to the capital and energy you have. Expand
as you learn. Don't risk all your selling capital on one advertisement or selling piece.
Don't be afraid to start small. The key to success is knowledge. Knowledge comes through
thought and observation in action! Action creates experience through trial and error. Don't
deplete your capital during the trial and error stage! All of us go through a learning curve
and that curve costs.
Starting small protects you from losing all your capital in one all or nothing test. Chances
are too high on the nothing.
One way to start small is through a two step selling program. You can start with
inexpensive classified ads which keeps initial costs down.
Two steps require two selling stories, the first is an advertisement aimed at getting qualified
potential buyers. Then once the potential readers have identified their interest, you give
them the second selling story.
Let me give you an example, I have been helping a group of magazines focused on healthy
living to merchandise. These magazines are distributed free at health food stores and in
other places where people concerned with alternative natural health might be. Our focus in
this magazine is natural health and I assume that many of the readers of this magazine are
Cultural Creatives, a subculture consisting of about 50 million adults in the U.S.
Cultural Creatives are far more likely to use natural preventative approaches to health. They
also have a high degree of humanitarian interest. So one of the products we sell through
this magazine is a Spanish course. A feature in the selling stories focus is the humanitarian
reasons (and benefits) why everyone in the U.S. should be able to communicate (speak
Spanish) with their Latin neighbors.
I am trying to help the magazine publishers sell these three week Spanish courses in
Ecuador that costs between $1,000 and $2,000.
Because the publication is distributed free, we do not have a money qualification for
readers. We do not know if all the readers of this magazine are willing to spend money on
such things so our advertisement is aimed only at getting the potential buyer of this course
to call us rather than to get the reader to send in $1,000 to $2,000 bucks.
We hired a telephone sales person to answer the calls and give the selling story and ask for
the signup. This was supported by a selling story posted at our website.
A one step selling system begins with the assumption that you have a qualified group of
potential buyers. You can deliver your selling story direct to this group, ask for the money
and if your assumptions about the group are correct and your story properly prepared, you
will get sales.
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The two step starts with a classified or small ad or low cost method of finding potential
buyers. I sometimes see signs nailed on telephone poles that says “Lose Weight. Call 1111111.” Or “Get Rich-Work at Home. Call 111-1111.” These are the first selling stories in a
two step selling system (normally not good ones I might say). The second step is to then
send the selling story that leads the reader (or listener) to the sale.
A two step can be a classified ad followed with a selling letter, a phone call or personal
presentation made over the phone, in person or in a workshop or seminar, etc.
Classifieds can work well as a first step for small budgets. The small ads can also lead to
big ads. If the media is good, a classified ad will work. If a classified works really well, then
the publisher can upgrade and try a small ad or test mail to a small number of subscribers
of that publication. If that works as well, then larger mailings and larger ads finally make
sense.
Treat every mailing as a test. Be cautious; build the size of your selling effort based on
experience.
Use classifieds to identify your initial potential buyers and test your selling story. If the
small effort works, then try something a little more substantial but be cautious as you roll
out.
Here is what roll-out means.
Suppose you suspect that readers of some magazine will be interested in your product.
Suppose you place a classified ad and get some interesting results. So you take the next
step and rent 3,000 names of subscribers from that magazine and send these people your
selling letter. If you make a profit on this 3,000 name test, you will roll-out (mail more
selling letters to even more readers of that list). The list hopefully has many, many readers.
Be cautious at the roll-out for several reasons. First, don't roll-out blindly because of the
financial risk. More than one time, I have mailed a test to 3,000 or 5,000 names with
spectacular results.
Then I rolled out to the next 20,000 or 30,000 names and the same selling piece bombed!
The list owner, manager or broker may have seeded the initial list to trick me. It is not
unknown for list owners to keep a list of hot buyers they send for first tests. This is a come
on. The list owner hopes if you get great results on the test, you will rent more names.
When you do, he gives you old names, bad names or any names at all. The results are
predictable. You lose everything you made on the test and often much more!
Or the mood of the market may have changed. You may never know!
A good way to prevent list managers from adding just hot names to your initial rental is to
ask for the last digit Zip or possibly the last two-digit Zip selection. This means that when
you order your first test selection of names rather then let the list owner or manager select
them at random, you choose specific amounts of names from certain zips. This may not
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prevent the hot names from being added, but makes it far more difficult for the list owner to
pull this trick.
If the national psyche has changed, some event, in some place has changed the mood of
the readers. When this happens the selling piece won’t work and a loss occurs.
There are many factors beyond your control that can affect one mailing from the next so
there is always risk when you do a roll out. I have had some of my worst failures when
rolling out. Now I use limited roll outs instead.
If I do a mailing and it succeeds, I roll out depending on the results of the mailing, the
minimum order of names I can take and the size of the list. If possible, I double the
mailing. If I have tested 5,000 names from a list of 30,000 and it does well, I'll mail
10,000. If it does really great, I might mail the final 15,000. If that piece does well, I'll
mail another 5,000 right away to the first names I originally until the list is used up. I keep
this up until the mailings are not profitable, then try the list again with a different selling
story or new product.
My aim will be to mail to the whole list as fast as possible, but only in chunks of 10,000. As
soon as a 10,000 mailing shows it is going to be profitable, I mail another 10,000. This
takes more work than just mailing the whole of the 30,000 names, but limits my risk.
On a bigger list, if the piece was giving me great results, I might triple my original mailing
(mail 15,000 after a success on a test of 5,000), or even more but not often, much more
than five times my test.
Second, I limit my roll out because I am very aware of my business's ultimate focus and
balance.
The first goal in my business is to be fulfilled and serve my community (which happens to
be world wide). If I have a huge influx of orders, I may get behind on my product delivery.
Product delivery is in my view the most important part of the selling system. I have built
my business on getting repeat orders and multiple sales.
A large influx of new customers makes it harder to turn them into repeat customers. Since
I base both my personal satisfaction and my profit on having a happy base of repeat
customers, it is self defeating to suddenly quadruple the number of orders I have to
process. It would upset the balance of my business. Unless I make additional capital
contributions and increase my overheads to handle the higher work load, I will decrease my
efficiency.
If I hire additional staff to handle a larger flow of orders, I have to maintain a larger flow of
orders. Thus if the roll out does not work, I will be in double trouble. I might lose on the
selling process and have higher overheads to support as well!
Hiring part-time help to process the extra orders creates risks too. I will have to create a
system to see they are trained properly and their work is checked.
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More businesses fail because they grow too fast than because they grow too slow. It is
important to budget your selling form to fit both the capital you have to risk and the capital,
time and energy you have available to serve your customer.
Few sales people see things this way. Their job is to create sales, not to balance the
business.
Your experience with a media is the fifth factor to be considered when selecting
your form of selling. For example, I will risk more on direct mail or an internet message
than on a radio ad. Most of my experience is in direct mail. Do not be afraid to go slow and
start small whenever you are dealing in areas where you lack experience.
Your selling form will also be dictated by the length of your selling story. Since the selling
story is a work of fiction, we can look at it in fiction terms. Your selling piece can be a Short
Story, Novel, Epic, or Serial!
As a general rule, here are seven types of media you can use to sell publications.
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
Media
Media
Media
Media
Media
Media
Media
#1:
#2:
#3:
#4:
#5:
#6:
#7:
Mail.
The Internet.
Newspapers, books, magazines, etc.
Radio and television.
Telephone.
In person.
Outlets.
You may at one time or the other use one or all of these. I have tried all of the above, but
mainly concentrate on using the Internet, mail, newspapers, books, phone, and personal
selling.
Sometimes, I use two or three together. Take for example the International Investment
Seminars I conduct. These courses sell from $499 to $1,995. I use an eight page direct
mail letter as the selling form to introduce these courses.
I recognize that seminars have many obstacles to overcome. I recognize that an eight page
letter is a pretty short form to say all that needs to be said about a three to seven day
course and a $499 to $1,500 price!
So I also include the telephone and the internet. I make it possible for the readers to buy
from the letter, but also leave a telephone call option for those who are not convinced or
have questions. Plus I have details about the courses and lots of ideas in my archives that
they can review to help them decide to join us.
The buyer might want to know more about the course before he sends such a large sum.
He (or she) might want to know about the hotel, the schedule, the transportation from the
airport, flight reservations, etc. Putting all this stuff in the direct mail selling piece would
double its size and distract from the sales story, so I put in the phone option and internet
support as well.
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Many readers sign up through the mail, especially if they have been to a course before. We
mail back a confirmation and they show up at the course. Others call in first. Who are we,
what is the course about, when does it start, what hotel, who will speak, when does it finish,
etc.? They ask all their questions, then they sign up over the phone. Most now sign up at
our secure shopping cat over the internet.
In the last six years, we have concentrated our marketing of seminars over the Internet
with excellent results. People can inquire, pay, ask more questions, etc. without charge to
them or us. In this case, I have two forms of selling at work at once.
However, I never put a phone number on my direct mail selling pieces for $49 or $99 or
even $149. We only have two phones and either Merri or I answer. If everyone called on
these more frequent orders, we would totally upset the balance of the whole business.
I have matched the forms of selling to the product, its price and the whole of our operation.
We lose orders this way, but the system works overall for us.
Form Length
Let's look at form length. Classified ads are the short stories of selling. The classified ad
must set the scene, tell the story and move to action in a hurry. Not one word can be
wasted. No page turning techniques are needed. The ad must be an emotion grabbing,
urgent, power packed message that moves the reader to action at once. There are plenty of
places where you can read classified ads and get the idea.
A full text advertisement is like a novel. It actually tells the story, but doesn't waste space.
It tells the story, emphasizes the emotions and urges the reader to action. The shorter the
ad, the faster the pace of the story must be.
Longer ads and direct mail pieces are like epics. Here you have space to draw the story out,
develop a sympathetic character and put in lots of details, facts and figures.
In direct mail, the post card and or card stacks and inserts are the short stories. A four to
eight page direct mail letter is the novel and the long letter or magazine selling piece or
catalogue is the epic.
In each case, a two or more step selling system is a serial.
For example a classified ad that attracts inquiries that are followed up by a call or a direct
mail reply is comparable to serial fiction.
One of my most recent marketing programs in our magazine consists of four steps
which is now possible because of the internet.
The products being sold are three and six day wellness weekends which my wife and I
conduct at our Blue Ridge Farm. These courses offer clean air, pure water and fresh food
and help our readers reduce stress and lose weight. At these courses we share longevity
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secrets we gleaned over years spent with vaidyas and pundits of India, Sufi masters,
Chinese herbalists, Tibetan monks and Andean shamans and yatchaks.
The course is expensive, up to $1,500 and somewhat hard to explain and is marketed
exclusively through the North Carolina magazine we help publish and to our internet
readers. We have limited accommodations at the farm so we just want 15 to 20 people each
for the two courses. This generates $50,000 or $60,000 of income for two weeks work that
we really love doing. Not bad unless we spent $100,000 advertising to get the business!
So our challenge is to bring in this enjoyable, fun business without spending much on
marketing.
I decided to base my marketing strategy around weight loss. There are few markets that are
larger. My channel was a magazine on healthy living and I figured that readers would be
interested in natural, balanced ways of losing weight. But wow is their competition in the
weight loss field! How would a little guy like me compete with SlimFast, Atkins and all the
big businesses out there touting their guaranteed weight loss plans?
I had a secret way to lose weight I have never seen marketed before and decided to use
this secret as the theme in my selling story, I wrote a report about this secret called the
Secret of the Ring Muscles.
Step #1: To begin I wrote a one half page book review to run in the magazine.
This review read: A little known book, The Secret of the Ring Muscles by Paula Garbourg
shows a simple yet effective way to lose weight by exercising sphincter muscles.
Sphincters are ring-shaped muscles around the eyes, nostrils, mouth, anus, urethra and
genitals. In a healthy body, all the sphincters work together, contracting and relaxing
simultaneously. In this fact lays the weight loss trick.
When these ring muscles all work correctly, they activate the respiratory, gastrointestinal,
circulatory, lymphatic, musculoskeletal and urogenital system. These muscles ultimately put
all the other muscles and organs to work.
Exercising the muscles are important to balance and health. When you exercise
sphincters, health and energy miracles can occur!
Garbourg’s book explains that sphincter exercises can help reduce or even eliminate
asthma, bed-wetting, childbirth, menstruation, nursing, depression, developmental
disabilities, flat feet, hemorrhoids, prolapse of the uterus, tremors, varicose veins, nervous
tics, excessive sweating and even more.
These exercises can even help stop smoking, Garbourg states. “The oral sphincters of
smokers are usually slack. To compensate for adequate muscle tone, the smoker puts a
cigarette his or her mouth and the lips close around it and contract. This contraction of the
lips increases the smokers ability to concentrate. He or she is able to think more clearly and
work better because the oral sphincter is making all the other sphincters work.
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Overeating is a very common problem today and is fundamentally a result of poor muscle
tone of the oral sphincter. When the ring muscles are out of balance the body tries to
restore them by chewing. What seems to be the bodies craving for food can be the body’s
craving for proper exercise of the sphincters.
There is a powerful exercise to solve this weakness, yet so simple because it only has to do
with the way we chew. Chewing should be done with the lips closed, but with the oral cavity
open as wide as possible. When chewing is done correctly all the sphincters and intestines
work in rhythm and cause the abdomen to contract, improving digestion.
This exercise returns the sphincters to normal operation and the demand for more food than
the body needs melts away. It is possible to eat enough without the fear of getting fat. All
you have to do is to make sure to open your jaws widely enough with each chew to bring all
the sphincters muscles into action. This reduces your body’s craving to eat and also enables
your body to burn up more calories more efficiently.
Can weight control be as simple as just chewing your food in a different way? To learn
more about ring muscles you can obtain a free report at www.I-Service-Center.com. Or
receive the printed report by sending $4.99 for postage and handling to International
Service Center, Inc., 157 Little Horse Path, Lansing N.C. 28643
My goal in the first step was not to sell a thing. My goal was simply to sell the reader to read
the report. There was a catch.
When the readers went to the URL for the report the page says:
Free Reports
Our goal is to provide you with interesting useful and credible information on
healthy living at a local, national and global basis. To download any free report,
please complete the information below.
Receive your link to the reports by subscribing to a free SLOWER Network E-Zine.
Choose your market, or select "NO MARKET CHOSEN" if you are not located in an
area mentioned in the list. Required fields are bolded. If you already are
subscribed to one of our e-zines don't worry, you won't get subscribed twice. We
will NEVER share your address with ANYONE...period.”
This means that I gain the name and email address of each person who downloads the
report plus sign them up for my daily ezine. This allows me to stay in touch with these
readers on a daily basis to build credibility with them.
Step #2: I posted the report at a special website. Here is the report.
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The Power in Key Muscles
Dusk fought a horizon of darkening finery in oranges and gold. Twilight brushed fading light
with amber memories on quiet waters below. The patina of eventide’s weariness descended
on the day.
Our anticipation grew as we approached Ganges Harbour, Salt Spring Island, British
Columbia, Canada, just as the sun slipped beneath the sea. The pilot had pushed the
little float plane high, despite its full load and awkward pontoons, so we could see a wider
spread of the spectacular sunset below. Golden light muted the darkening Pacific islands.
Then we descended with the sun onto a sheltered bay. My wife Merri and I were taking this
trip to be treated by and to learn from Dr. Ram Pandey. He is a master of deep healing
routines called Kayakalpa.
When we learn from such masters or take treatments, we observe closely. Often this brings
understanding of more than what is being said or done. We try to connect dots with
knowledge that has been shared with by other masters we have met. This is our way of
seeking truth and this is how we stumbled across the secret of key muscles that
we share here.
Purification
One practice that permeates every healing practice we have enjoyed, studied or heard is
purification. We have visited and studied many, Andeans, Amazonians, Tibetans, Indians,
Mayans, Sufis and found that all have one form of internal cleansing or another. Kayakalpa
is one of the best and deepest cleansings we have experienced and our goal on the trip to
salt springs was to be cleansed for rejuvenation.
However we gained more. Dr. Pandey’s introduction of three exercises for retaining energy
and vigor was the first of seven coincidences that has improved our health for more than a
decade. Just recently we discovered (and share here) why.
Coincidence #1
The three exercises taught by Dr. Pandey stimulated key muscles in the buttocks, abdomen,
chest and mouth. We did not know then, that this was a foundation for weight loss. This
report outlines how we discovered this.
Nor did we know that a coincidence occurred while staying at Salt Springs (it took us more
than ten years to discover this fact). This coincidence occurred when we stumbled across a
book in a Salt Springs health food store. That book, The Secret of the Ring Muscles by Paula
Garbourg was the second coincidence that began a series of crossroads.
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We unknowingly picked up a simple, easy to use philosopher’s stone that would lead too
better health. I did not know it then because I did not read the ring muscle book right away
(or for a decade in fact).
We spent over a month living with Dr. Pandey. When we returned home our catch-up work
buried us. The book on ring muscles was quietly slipped unread on the bookshelf and
forgotten. The importance of what we learned with Dr Pandey did not arise until later.
Merri and I found ourselves living high in the Andes with a Shaman, his wife and
apprentices. More coincidences occurred.
Coincidence #2
I had taken two books to study in the mountains. The first was The Book of Internal
Exercises by Stephen T. Chang. I began to read this book as I joined with the shaman and
his apprentices in their daily routine.
The book introduced three exercises called the The Deer, Crane and Turtle. I still was not
connecting dots when I read the excerpts in this book below.
The Deer, the Crane and Turtle form a foundation of Internal Energizing
Exercises. They make a wonderful healing system, are easily performed, and
require no strenuous activity and do not require a great deal of time.
We receive much of the energy we need from the food we eat and the air we
breathe. However the body much like an high performance automobile must be
finely tuned if it is to run properly and attain maximum efficiency.
Through the centuries the seven glands within the body have been understood to
be energy centers, responsible for regulating the efficient flow of energy. These
seven glands in ascending order are the sexual glands, adrenals, pancreas,
thymus, and thyroid, pituitary and pineal.
Chang’s book outlined how the seven glands are connected and said that well being comes
when each is energized and exchanging energy with the others in a balanced way. Another
excerpt from his book explains this.
The sexual glands form the basis of the glandular complex. By exercising the
rectum and anal muscles one can strengthen stimulate and energize the sexual
glands. This simple action supplies energy to the thymus which in turn pushes
energy up in to the succeeding glands which lie above. Taoists refer to the sexual
glands as the stove which when properly filled with energy and stimulation
supplies the rest of the body with energy.
Part of this Deer exercise is to simply tighten the buttocks and anal sphincter
muscles, exactly as Dr. Pandey had taught! The Crane works on the abdomen and
the Turtle stretches the neck (to stimulate the thyroid).
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Reading about these exercises rang a bell. Buttocks, abdomen, chest and neck.
This added more dots but I was far from connecting the gaps. The power of what I was
reading, seeing and living would come later.
Coincidence #3
While in the Andes we lived in the shamanic way. Rising at 4:30 to start a busy day. First
we began with prayers, then gentle and finally vigorous exercise. This part of the routine
ended with a cold shower. The air and icy water at the seven thousand foot altitude were a
brisk wakeup! Then we prayed again, ate breakfast, studied and worked until lunch. Again
prayed, ate, studied. Then we prayed again, worked till dinner, prayed once more, ate
dinner, had some social time and at a very early hour (8 to 8:30) prayed once more and
went to bed.
The third coincidence came through observations of the shamanic prayer and eating
routines. Many prayers for the Andeans are performed in an exercising position, most
aimed at unlocking energy in butt, and abdomen. Plus when the shaman and his wife gave
lessons in how to eat, they never said a word, but sat and chew and chew and chew…in
long, deep chewing motions. I thought they were trying to show us that we should
slow our chewing down our chewing and asked why. I now ten years later know
better!
The shaman did not say. Some time passed before I realized he might not know. Andeans
pass on knowledge by rote. “Do as I do. Don’t ask why” is their credo. They know many
things to do, but don’t always understand or question why. So their chewing left more
dots…but still unconnected.
Coincidence #4
The second book read while living with the Shamans was Breathe! You are Alive!
By Thich Nhat Hanh.
This book explains a Buddhist teaching called a sutta or sutra. This particular
sutra teaches 16 exercises, but it was the first three of them that began to help me
see the coincidences that had been taking place. These three exercises were
described in terms of breath.
The sutra read: “Breathing in, I know I am breathing in. Breathing out I know I
am breathing out. Breathing in a long breath, I know I am breathing in a long
breath. Breathing out I know I am breathing out a long breath. Breathing in a
short breath, I know I am breathing in a short breath.”
Here were words from another ancient text telling us how to be happy and
healthy. These words seemed far removed from Dr, Pandey’s lessons and the
shamanic rites Merri and I had lived and observed, until I noticed something in
these breaths. When I breathed the regular breath I could feel it stimulate the
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neck and butt. The long breath stretched the abdomen. That short breath seemed
to work high in the chest.
A glimmering began to rise. A flickering light whispered, “Neck, butt, abdomen and
chest”. Yet the picture was still murky and undefined. I had not yet read Paula
Garbourg’s ring muscle book.
Coincidence #5
During our stay with the Shaman we took many trips, usually one Saturday which was the
day they took off their routine. One such outing ended in Chordaleg, a small village, high in
the Andes. While there he bought a wooden carving depicting an Incan Royal in a kneeling
position. The figure’s front knee was bent forward and the back knee was bent to reach the
heel of the front foot.
The shaman used the carving to tell a fascinating tale about how the Spanish abolished the
traditional Andean teachings and made them illegal. The Shaman then explained how funny
this was because at the same time the Spanish museums worked hard to preserve Incan
artifacts such as this carving. “This is how we pass on the knowledge,” the shaman
explained. “This figure shows one of our most important exercises called the Llama Walk”.
He then went on to teach me this exercise. You take a step and as you bend your knee
forward bring your other knee forward toward your heel.
This is an impressive exercise that stretches the inner leg muscles and strengthens the
upper leg. Another dot was added. I was using these techniques. My health improved
enormously. My weight dropped, yet I still had not filled in the lines. I did not understand
why my weight and health remained in good order while so many others my age (58)
suffered from chronic obesity ad poor health.
Coincidence #6
Years passed and still I did not catch on, though slowly all these ideas were coming
together. The pace of understanding accelerated a couple of years ago when I was honored
with an invitation to join an ancient order, The Poor Knights of Christ, commonly known as
the Knights Templar. Beatitudes of this organization are:
To have spiritual joy, to live without malice, to humble thyself to those who injure
thee, to love justice, to be merciful, to be sincere and to be pure of heart.
However there was nothing in the written doctrines concerning physical fitness or
good health.
As I became increasingly involved in the Knights Templar I learned that a great deal of
knowledge about how to lead a correct life had been passed in pictorial form. Often the
illustrations in illustrated manuscripts was as important as the text.
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Regretfully a lot of the meanings in the pictures have been forgotten. Few know what to
look for. Thus I surprised when in preparing my stationary for the order, I was given the
insignia of a knight in what appears to be a position of reverence. This knight was doing
the Llama Walk!
This accelerated my understanding, that many, many ancients from many different
places were telling us to exercise our neck, abdomen, chest and butt. One more
event was required though, to connect all these dots.
Coincidence #7
The revelation finally came in the way so many important things do, through a totally
mundane act. Merri and I conduct Wellness Weekends at our Blue Ridge Farm. These
events are get-togethers where we share ideas about how to live better and immerse
ourselves in what we learn. Days begin with country walks and gentle exercise. We share
how to prepare delicious organic food and live as the shamans, masters and healers who
have taught us.
Before each course I prepare, thinking about new ideas to share. This preparation began
the seventh coincidence.
I was standing barefoot in our office, searching trough our book shelves to stimulate ideas.
The unopened and ten year old unread copy of the book, The Secret of the Ring Muscles by
Paula Garbourg fell from the shelf onto my foot.
Pain sat me down. Ouch! The book lay before me open at page eight. I picked it
up. I read:
Sphincters are ring-shaped muscles that surround the various orifices of the body
both internal and external. They include the muscles around the eyes, the
nostrils, the mouth, the anus, the urethra and the genitals. In a healthy body, all
the sphincters work together, contracting and relaxing simultaneously.
As they do so, they activate the respiratory system, the gastrointestinal system,
the circulatory system, the lymphatic system, the musculoskeletal system and the
urogenital system. In fact the ring muscles are ultimately responsible for putting
all the other muscles and all the organs of the body to work.
The seven coincidences came crashing together. Dr. Pandey’s exercises, Stephen
Chang’s explanation of the Deer, Crane and Turtle, the shamanic positions and the
chewing lessons, Thich Nhat Hanh’s book on breath and the Knight’s kneeling
position were all tied to the ring muscles!
This explained why exercising the lower muscles was so important to our balance and
health.
- 147 -
But how did this tie to exercising the lungs and the neck, I wondered? I did not have to
read far to find out. Page twelve explains the connection when it says:
The functioning of the sphincters is closely linked to the functioning of other bodily
structures. Two of the most important of these are the diaphragms and loredoses
(the inward curvature of the spine at the lower back and neck). Through these
structures the ring muscles affect the health of the entire body; conversely the
health and proper functioning of these structures also affects the coordinated
activity of the sphincters. All the diaphragms should work in unison with the
opening and closing of the sphincters. Lordoses affect and in turn are affected by
conditions elsewhere in the body, especially the sphincter muscles.
Bam! There it was. The connection, between the butt, abdomen, chest and neck. Opening
pathways in these areas exercises the sphincters in the abdomen, chest and neck. When
you exercise sphincters health and energy miracles can occur!
However, the purpose of this report is not to sell you on sphincter exercises or health
system. In fact our aim is not to sell you on anything.
There are only two simple missions here.
First our aim is to introduce the idea of how important ring muscles may be. Pursue this
idea only if you wish.
Garbourg’s book says the sphincter exercises in the book can help reduce or even eliminate
asthma, bed-wetting, childbirth, menstruation, nursing, depression, developmental
disabilities, flat feet, and hemorrhoids, prolapse of the uterus, tremors, varicose veins,
nervous tics, excessive sweating and even more. These exercises can even help stop
smoking, Garbourg states. “The oral sphincters of smokers are usually slack. To compensate
for adequate muscle tone, the smoker puts a cigarette his or her mouth and the lips close
around it and contract. This contraction of the lips increases the smokers’ ability to
concentrate. He or she is able to think more clearly and work better because the oral
sphincter is making all the other sphincters work.”
If you have any of the problems above, then this sphincter knowledge may help. The
contacts section of this report shows how to get more information.
The report’s second goal is to show how one enormously simple exercise that can help more
than half the population of the modern world. We have a common problem, obesity. We
find it hard not to accumulate and hold too much weight!
Garbourg’s book shows on page 41 one simple exercise for better digestion and
weight control. This is so simple yet so powerful because it only has to do with the way
you chew. Here is what she says:
Chewing should be done with the lips closed, but with the oral cavity open as
wide as possible. When chewing is done correctly the lower sphincters and
intestines can be felt working in rhythm and causing the abdomen to contract.
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There you have it, exercise of the neck, chest, abdomen, all the way down to the
butt, just by chewing differently.
The book also says: “If you open your jaw widely enough while chewing, there is no need
to chew your food a great deal before swallowing it.”
It also says is important to chew on both sides of the mouth. Overeating is a very common
problem today and this is fundamentally a result of poor muscle tone of the oral sphincter.
The book explains that when our sphincter muscles are out of balance the body tries to
restore them by chewing. Thus what seemed to be the body’s craving for food can be the
body’s craving for proper exercise of the sphincters.
Garbourg explains: “With proper exercise the sphincters return to normal operation and
there is no longer a demand for more food than the body needs. It is possible to eat enough
without the fear of getting fat. All you have to do is to make sure to open your jaws widely
enough with each chew to bring all the sphincters muscles into action. This will reduce your
body’s craving to eat and will also enable your body to burn up more calories more
efficiently.”
Can weight control be as simple as just chewing your food in a slightly different
way? This has definitely helped me. Upon using the technique described in
Garbourg’s book, my weight dropped and I have been able to reduce the amount
of discipline required to not snack in mornings and afternoons. More important I
feel better, more relaxed and at ease.
Will this technique work for you? Who knows? To be honest because these seven
coincidences led me to understand the importance of key muscles over a decade, I have
been doing exercise more than chewing. I don’t really know if just the chewing exercise is
enough to help.
But I think it is. What does it cost to try?
We are all different. Your weight challenges may be created by different imbalances than
mine.
What will you lose to find out? The knowledge here has been given free. No extra time, no
special uniform, no extra space, place, coach or expense of any kind is required to give it a
try.
My experience is that proper exercise of sphincter muscles brings profound improvements in
one’s heath, well being and energy. I feel blessed that seven coincidences helped me
discover this fact. I had to travel the world and spend years to gain these techniques that
improve my health.
All you have to do is chew!
- 149 -
If what we have shared here makes any sense, I recommend trying this chewing technique.
If it improves your life, study more from the contacts below.
At the least you may gain a valuable aid in weight control.
This report could even be the first coincidence in your life that leads to many keys exercises
for a better, healthier life.
Merri and I hope this sharing may lead the way!
Gary Scott
Gary & Merri Scott have written and published 36 books and regular reports on
international investing for twenty years for over 23,000 readers in 82 countries.
Their success in helping investors prosper economically concerned them when
they saw that readers gained wealth but not happiness or health. The Scott’s
quest to help readers have everlasting wealth, beyond the balance sheet led them
to live and study for years with great healing masters from the Amazon, Andes,
China, India, Middle East, Tibet and the Western world.
Contacts
The Book of Internal Exercises, Stephen T. Chang. Great Tao institute 1-201-3580620. Fax: 201 722 8934, E-mail: [email protected]
Born and raised in China, Dr. Chang studied Taoist medicine from age six. His family has
practiced medicine over 400 years. His great-grandfather was a physician to the Emperor of
China (Tung Tse) and the first ambassador to the United Kingdom.
Dr. Chang is author of several books translated in over ten languages with over a million
copies sold including 'The Great Tao', 'The Complete System of Self Healing', 'Internal
Exercises', 'The Integral Management of Tao', 'Complete Achievement' and 'The Tao of
Balanced Diet' among others.
His books are used in universities and as hospital texts and he holds degrees in medicine,
law and philosophy. He is honorable professor at University of Beijing, China, Ai Ji
University, Japan, Oslo University, Norway and has lectured at University Of California,
Berkeley, Stanford University, The Chinese Medical Assoc., London and many others. More
details are at the website www.taohealingarts.com/changsbio.html
Breathe! You are Alive, Suttra on the Full Awareness of Breathing. Thich Nhat Hanh,
Tel.: (760) 291-1003, Fax.: (760) 291-1010
E-mail: [email protected]
Thich Nhat Hanh is a Vietnamese Buddhist monk whose tireless efforts for reconciliation
between North and South Vietnam moved Martin Luther King, Jr. to nominate him for the
Nobel Peace Prize. He teaches, writes, gardens, and works to help refugees worldwide. He
has conducted many mindfulness retreats in Europe and North America helping veterans,
children, environmentalists, psychotherapists, artists and many thousands of individuals
- 150 -
seeking peace in their hearts, and in their world. More details are at the website
Website: www.deerparkmonastery.org
The Secret of the Ring Muscles, Healing Yourself through Sphincter Exercise.
Paula Garbourg Institute, Tel: 954-394-5770 Fax: Number 954-337-0820
Email:[email protected]
After emigrating from Germany to Israel in 1936, Paula Garbourg contracted a serious
debilitating disease. Four physicians said she would spend the rest of her life in a
wheelchair. Unwilling to accept this Paula drew on her early training in opera and ballet
dancing, and began a rigorous, physical experiment trying to find a cure for her condition.
She developed a set of exercises based on relationships between muscles and organs and
recovered. This led to physical therapy of ring muscles. These exercises have been
recognized to help almost any common ailment, Asthma, Arthritis, Backache, Headache,
Depression, or any other ailment for over 50 years by Israel’s HMO's and insurance
companies.
More is at the website www.rings.net
Wellness Weekends at Merrily Farms. International Service Center, Inc. 157 Little Horse
Path, Lansing, N.C. 28643. Tel: 336-384-1122. Fax:336-384-1577. email:
[email protected] For facilities: www.littlehorsecreek.com To sign up:
www.garyascott.com
Step #3: Note how in the report I gave readers my address in the contacts portion
of the report, plus led them to our www.littlehorsecreek.com website so they can
learn more about our facilities.
Step #4: I sent special email reminders about the ring muscles and our wellness
weekends just to the readers who took this report.
Let’s examine how this all worked.
First there was no cost to write the book review for the magazine which is focused
on natural, healthy living. This magazine reached 16,000 readers who live within
a couple of hours of the farm.
The report accomplished several purposes. First, it gave the readers what was
promised, a free report on a truly simple and almost surely unknown way to help
control and lose weight. So even if the reader never does anything with us they
will feel satisfied. There were no tricks or come-ons which is kind of rare in this
increasingly tricky world. This gives us some credibility from the get-go.
The report also establishes Merri and me as authorities as it delivers its promise.
This makes the messages in our daily ezines more powerful and effective.
Finally the report made our offer for the course and that offer was related to a well
substantiated report. Look at all the sources of credibility, the books and contacts
- 151 -
the reader received so they could follow up and see that what was written is real,
powerful and effective.
What were my advertising costs? Almost Zip. There was no cost to write the book
review or report and no cost to add a report to my web page and no cost to add
the readers to my ezine and there is no added cost when I send my daily ezine or
special message to this particular list.
The sales that result from this effort are almost all pure extra profit.
The frosting in this process is that Merri and I have made some really wonderful
friends from those who have come and lived a week with us and we really enjoy
watching them feel better as the week goes by.
How to Get Started
There are several ways to get started. One way is to hire an advertising agent or consultant
or copywriter. If you hire an agent, he will make a percentage of the advertising you place.
He will want you to spend as much on advertising as possible. The more you spend the
more he makes.
An advertising consultant will help you do your marketing, create your selling piece, choose
your form, etc. He will charge you a pretty good size fee. If the piece he develops works,
then he is well worth that fee.
A copywriter will specialize in actually developing the sales system and writing the sales
piece.
If you have the capital and have little experience in selling, I would start with a copywriter.
Involve him from the very beginning of the project. Look for two or three and compare
what they say and what they charge. Some copywriters can be enormously expensive.
The other way to create your selling piece and select the selling form is to do it yourself. In
the case study that follows, you will see how I have matched one sales story to many sales
forms.
The goal is to give you ideas on how to sell your own publications on a shoestring budget.
Remember do not be afraid to start small and grow as you gain experience! Use
the translation technique (take a successful ad and translate it to your product),
the golden rule of simplicity (write from the heart) and start small.
In review, after you have completed your marketing and developed your selling story, you
need to select your form of selling. It can be short, long, very long or consist of two three
or even more selling pieces in several media.
But before you have chosen your selling form, you will also want to look at several different
selling channels. I discuss selling channels in the upcoming lessons.
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Publishing Pointers
Response lists cost more than compiled lists. Often they cost much more. But it is not the
cost of the list that matters. It is how well the list works that counts. For example, if a
compiled list costs $50 per thousand and a good response list costs $200 per thousand, look
at how renting that response list can save you money.
If you rent 5,000 names, the compiled list costs $250, the response list $1,000. Suppose
you mail a selling piece offering a $50 publication. Suppose the mailing piece costs 50 cents
each.
If only 40% more of the response list read your message than on the compiled list, you
save $1000. If only 2% of the 40% buy, you gain an extra $2000 in sales!
In the long run, you end up with much more money using response lists. Bigger is not
better when it comes to choosing lists. Most successful lists are small, narrowly defined
lists. Every attempt I ever made with a compiled list ended in failure.
The contacts below are the best I have used for getting marketing assistance in the area of
list assistance:
Craig Hewey
Infomat List Brokers
1815 West 213th St.
Suite 210
Torrence, Calif. 90501
Tel: 310-212-5944
Janey Thompson
Carnegie Marketing Assoc.
20695 S. Western Ave. Suite 105
Torrance, California 90501
Tel: 310-783-4757
Beth Dent
Name Bank
824 Baltimore Street
Baltimore Md.
Tel: 301-234-0515
Phillips List Marketing
7811 Montrose Road
Potomac, Md. 20854
- 153 -
Case Study - Multi Form Selling
This study shows how many forms of sales can be used to present the same selling story.
The selling story in this study is Borrow Low-Deposit High. I have used every media and
many forms to tell this story.
Classified Ads have worked well. I use two types of classified ads. The first is the short
story approach, which tells the story quickly, urges the reader to act and send in $29. I
only use this ad in publications, magazines or newspapers where I feel that I might have
some name recognition, or where the interest on the part of the reader in international
investing is very strong.
Here is that ad:
Borrow Low-Deposit High. New International Investment Technique. Learn how to borrow
as low as 2% and redeposit at 7% or higher with world's safest banks. Send $29 to
International Services for $78 report. Money back if not satisfied.
If I am placing the ad in a new magazine or publication where I have no experience and my
name will not likely be recognized, I use a two step (serial approach). First, I place this a
Borrow Low-Deposit High. Free list huge, safe banks lending
at 7% for redeposit at 13% or more. SASE & $1 P&H. International Services.
I send those who answer this ad an eight page sales letter.
In this two step process I am attracting their attention with the short story and sending the
novel to make the sale. This is the serial approach and has worked well in the Wall Street
Journal for me.
Display Advertising
I also place display ads telling the Borrow Low-Deposit High selling story. I test a magazine
or newspaper first with classified ads. Only if the classified works do I commit to display.
If the publication where I am advertising has a focus on international investing or travel,
this ad worked well, often running profitably month in and month out.
One point I want to mention about the return address in my ads. I show a suite number in
the return address in this ad as Suite 264L. Our actual suite number is 264, but I use a
different code for every ad or direct mail piece I use.
Using these suite numbers, helps me identify and measure the results of every ad that I
place. I keep track of every ad I place.
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This is important. Before I ever place an ad, I know how many orders it takes, how many
dollars must come in to cover the cost of the ad, product delivery AND to make a profit. If
an ad is not profitable, I stop running it immediately!
Direct Mail
I also tell the Borrow Low-Deposit High story through direct mail. In this case, the story is
part of a sales story in which the reader can choose the packages to buy. I mail this letter
to lists that have indicated an interest in my products through some other form (such as a
classified ad).
Threshold prices in the national psyche is important. My distributor in England will not sell a
product below $49. He feels this price is too low there. It would cheapen the image of the
product. He markets everything there for the same numbers, but in British Pounds. That
means my products cost about 70% more there! Be careful not to sell your products for
too little.
Word Of Mouth
I've sold the Borrow Low-Deposit High report by word of mouth. I had the book displayed
at every seminar and investment conference where I speak. I always mentioned the idea
and made it known that the report is available.
TV and Radio
I have never advertised on TV or radio so will not comment. From time to time, I am
interviewed on radio and TV. Whenever possible, I discuss a book or report I have to sell
and I keep a P.O. Box especially for this sort of thing so it is easy to say: "Write to Box 157
and I'll send details".
Our full address would be far too hard for anyone to pick up and remember from a
conversation on TV or radio.
However I never use the P.O. box in classified ads. Having an address helps soothe fears a
potential buyer might have.
I do not put much store in TV and radio for products with narrow focus. There are just too
many viewers to pay for who don't have any interest whatsoever in international investing.
I have tried TV and radio interviews to see what would happen but have not seen a great
response.
If I were to use TV or the radio as a media, I would have to broaden the focus and talk
about getting rich or gaining safety with no mention of the international element at all. This
would cause a backlash when buyers got a product with all this international focus.
Our refunds might rise, our administrative burden increase and new staff would need to be
introduced or our level of efficiency would drop. Such a broadened focus would throw our
whole business off balance, so we have not advertised on TV.
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If a TV or radio program were centered just on international investing, then these media
might make sense, but I cannot see them doing so otherwise, until the national psyche
changes substantially.
Some years ago I was a guest speaker for 12 minutes or so every Friday on a New York
radio money show. The radio host gave me plenty of plugs and I was able to talk about my
publications again and again. Gaining the position of being a figure of authority along with
repetition aimed at this perfect focus or readers did produce some results. Even then, not
a lot. This was just some spice in the gravy.
This study, shows how one sales story was presented in many forms. Just as a fairy tale
can be in a book, cartoon, movie or told as a bedtime story.
Your sales story should be told in the form that fits your readers in the most profitable way.
You may have a one form product such as a flea market booklet or multi-form products like
mine.
Look carefully at your focus, start small, test and measure over a period of time. This will
make your selling increasingly profitable.
Case Study
This case study shows how a publisher can succeed with simple graphics and how
to keep selling formats focused with the product.
The logo in the sample of my report below shows the format I have used for my products
over 20 years. In short my graphics budget on printed stuff is zero. I paid the graphics artist
who designed that idea for me about fifty bucks more than two decades ago, so on an
amortized basis I have spent about $2.50 a year. This is not to suggest that you must have
such a simple format of you enjoy the pictorial approach in communication. The point is
that you can keep it simple if you choose.
My Logo
* WHAT TO DO NOW: Learn seven secrets that bring wealth wherever you want
to be in the world.
* Cash in on wellness. See page two.
* See how to earn money through travel and living abroad
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* FINANCE YOUR OVERSEAS BUSINEESS & INVESTING AT 2% OR LESS!
Sunset at sea, a golden orb melts in the horizon and daylight gives way to evening stars.
Pale salmon fades into purple mistiness and colors ocean waters in the silent song of dusk.
Naples Florida, at sunset on the beach. The ocean breeze picked up and whispered
nature’s secrets as the sun slid into the sea. If only we can learn to hear what the
messages given in these natural glories.
There is a place where the sun never sets, an international world and those who
choose to live it an Incredible Economic Clue.
Believe it or not, an extraordinary event confirms some economic thinking about
what might happen in business opportunities and investing trends next.
END OF SAMPLE
The second point in this study deals in focus. The marketing piece below
shows the graphics I have used for all my direct mail marketing. The point?
The marketing graphics are very similar to the product graphics, so the
reader has a clue of what he will get. Had I used slick four color ads and
then delivered the graphically Plain Jane publication I may have had higher
refunds and less trusting, loyal readers. Plus my overheads would have
been higher, frustrations greater.
This is a sample introduction to a marketing piece that sells this course.
Note how the graphics matches my report above.
Gain Potential in the Wellness Revolution
Gain profits doing good for society and the world! Publishing information about
wellness is one of those rare opportunities where economics and the social good
merge. You can earn as much as 200% per annum on your investment (or
perhaps more) while being on society’s healthy living, leading edge.
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Before I proceed, let me add a word of caution. I (nor anyone for that fact) can
know how much money you will earn publishing.
In fact I cannot even guarantee you will make a profit at all. Two people I now
started magazines in this field and failed. Others marketing in this industry earn
modest incomes. However others are really cashing in.
Your success will depend on the size and composition of your market, how hard
you work, what you publish and how skillful and dedicated you are.
Yet this message shares two financial examples, one of a mature magazine in a
small market and one of a growing publication in a large market and then shows
you how to learn more about how to be a publisher and be self-fulfilled.
END OF SAMPLE
Assignment
Plan Your First Form of Sale by listing the factors.
Factor # 1: What is your buyer’s physical location. What is the best way to reach this
location and buyer?
A: Magazine or Publication? Which? What Kind of Ad? Cost?
B: Direct Mail? What should be mailed? What list or lists? Cost?
C: Website or email?
D: Other?
Factor # 2: What are your graphic needs.
A: Who will design? Cost?
B: Who will create?
Cost?
Factor # 3: What is the price of the product?
Factor # 4: How much time and money do you have to launch this sale?
Factor # 5: How much experience do you have in the media you are choosing? How can
you get more experience or knowledge?
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Lesson Ten
Selling Channels
Blood red bolts of sunrise announce the dawn and cut the horizon in razor streaks
on an inky black edge. Pinks and orange climb the sky, boldly claiming the day
and turning the darkness below to light. A grey strip of antiquity stretches calm
and strong below.
Over the British coast at dawn. We hurtle on in the majesty of daybreak. Watching
sunrises from an airplane is a great profession, but this particular dawn was especially red,
more spectacular than we've ever seen. We were flying to Manchester for our son Jacob's
birthday. He was studying in the UK and though our trip was mainly for pleasure, a great
benefit in having a publishing business is the there is usually some form of wherever you
go. So on this trip I also worked on expanding my selling channels.
Selling channels are the routes your sales stories take to reach your customer.
While in England, I talked to direct response specialists and book distributors who wanted to
sell my books in the UK. I was expanding my wholesale selling channels.
Selling channels can be divided into:
* Selling Channel #1: Retail.
* Selling Channel #2: Wholesale.
* Selling Channel #3: Publicity.
Retail selling channels include direct mail, advertising, and personal selling. An entire
lesson was devoted to the retail channels because this channel gives a publisher the
greatest control over his or her destiny.
Other channels can be important because they provide maximum sales with minimum
selling risk.
Wholesale Selling
Wholesale selling falls into four categories, #1: PI deals, #2: Co-op deals, #3: Wholesale
distribution, #4: Royalty deals.
PI Deals. PI stands for Per Insertion. These are ads paid for with a percentage of the sales
form the ad.
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If you have a successful ad, but your budget prohibits ads in a well focused publication
approach the publisher (not the editor) can offer to pay a percentage of sales made from
the ad.
If the publisher is unknown to me, I say something like, "my experience tells me that an ad
in your magazine might work. My budget won’t allow me to place the ad at this time but
would like to use in your magazine now. Would you be willing to test this on a PI basis?”
Magazines and newspapers are fighting every day to find information. All you need is a
publisher with empty space and you may have a deal. The publisher might say no. Nothing
ventured, nothing gained. Then again the answer may be yes.
Here are a few tips about PI deals.
Tip #1: Look for smaller publications. Smaller publications are more likely to take a PI than
large.
Tip #2: Go directly to the publisher. Avoid advertising salespeople. Most publications have
set systems that may be hard to get altered. Approach someone who can sidestep the
system.
Tip #3: Give enough to make the deal more attractive than a paid in advance ad, but not so
much so there is no profit left. Most PI deals I do are 50-50 deals. If my publication is being
sold at a ten to one ratio, I get half the gross, without marketing risk.
Tip #4: If you have more than one size ad, try as many options as possible. Maybe the
magazine has space for a full page ad or even a two page or bigger insert. Or perhaps they
can only use a half, quarter or 1/6 page. The more options you offer the more likely the
deal.
Tip #5: Keep the publisher informed of results. Recently I wanted to test an ad for a report
on an organic soap. I convinced two publishers of health related community magazines to
run a full page ad on a PI basis:
I thought the sales story would work well, but it flopped! The ad ran in two
magazines reaching 22,000 readers and we only sold one report.
I have talked with the publishers and explained what happened and why I thought
it bombed. I sent them some of the soap that the report covered because it is a
great product and I wanted to keep good relations with those publishers. This
failure would have cost me well over a thousands dollars had I paid for the ads
rather than use a PI deal.
Tip #6: Have a good accounting system for the money you will split on PI deals. I normally
suggest that the publisher receive the money and send me a check for my half along with
the orders. I prefer this to receiving the money myself. There are two reasons.
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First, I don't have to keep the accounts. The publisher does. Second, the answers the
question the publisher must be thinking, "How do I know you will pay?"
I do not let the publisher fill the orders though. I ask for payment before filling the order for
his reader. This creates a simple checks and balance.
Tip #7: Forget contracts. If you run a small business as I do, there is no time to mess
around with lawyers and fine print. I finalize my agreements with simple letters of
understanding. They say what they mean and are simple. Here is a sample:
Dear Publisher,
I understand you will place my ad in your magazine for the month of June. I
understand you will receive all sales, send me half of the sales received. Upon
receipt of the orders and my one-half of the proceeds, I will promptly deliver my
book.
I understand if there are any refunds I will send you one-half of the refund
requested and you will refund the buyer the full refund.
I am excited about working with your publication and enjoying profits together.
If the publisher is not capable of receiving orders, keep the accounting and reporting clear
and pay promptly so they might place ads on a PI basis for you again!
PI deals can work exceedingly well. For example some years ago a newsletter publisher
called me and asked if I had any PI ads to run. An advertiser had drop out at the last
moment and he was looking to fill the space. He had 10,000 readers and his ad costs were
about $2,500 so I sent him an ad.
An ad in that newsletter that returned an average of 50 cents per reader ($5,000 in sales)
were considered good. Ads that returned an average one dollar per name ($10,000 sales)
were considered really good. In this case within three weeks this ad grossed over
$120,000 or twelve dollars per average reader. This is an almost unheard of return.
There are several lessons here. First. that publisher made over $60,000 on that insert. He
was very pleased he had run the ad.
So was I. I picked up $60,000 myself. Had I paid $2,500 to run the insert I would have
made over $120,000 instead. Yet I did not see this as a loss. Advertising in that newsletter
was outside my budget. I would not have run the ad without the PI offer.
Plus when I saw those results I quickly placed that selling piece in lots of other newsletters
and made a fortune.
There is one other point in this story. As the sales rolled in that publisher started sending
me the orders without checks and pretty soon he was $12,000 behind. I had to put my foot
down and tell him, no more deliveries until payments were caught up. Everything worked
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out but this could have created a bit of a mess if I had continued filling orders and not
received payment.
The second form of wholesale advertising is the Co-op deal which is are like the PI
deal except some money on your part is involved. In a typical Co-Op deal the
publisher will run an insert for you in a book or newsletter, but because the insert increases
the postage, you pay for the increased cost.
Other Co-Op deals are more complex. One Co-Op deal I did with a copywriter was very
complex. I wrote a book just for him to sell. I wrote the ad, he perfected it. He chose
where to advertise and paid for the ads. He got the money and sent me a fourth. He kept
three-fourths. I produced and delivered the book. This was a gem deal for both of us. He
had huge amounts of advertising space he bought on a wholesale basis. He needed
products to sell. I was able to produce the book from scratch just for him. I was able to
structure the publication to make a profit on the one-fourth I received. In addition, I got a
list of customers.
My risk was time and the cost of writing and publishing the book. I got everything ready,
but did not start printing until orders started coming in. He was delighted with the
deal....grossing over $154,000!
The third type of wholesale deal is wholesale distribution where another publisher
or distributor agrees to buy your books on a wholesale basis. These types of deals
can range from a book store buying books by the case to a publisher putting your
books in a catalog.
I've had all kinds of deals like this. One publisher sold so many of my books we did a deal
where he ordered the books directly from my printer. Just be careful that you trust your
printer or the publisher and printer could cut you out of payment. This particular publisher
tried.
Another produced a financial catalog, put several of my books and ordered them on a five
book at a time basis. I have had numerous small publishing distributors advertise my books
and send me orders as they come in.
Wholesale distributions can vary enormously. The details however are the same:
#1: Make sure you sell at a profitable price.
#2: Make sure you have a way of getting paid.
#3: Make sure that the buyers of the publications have a way of getting the book.
#4: Try to get the names of the actual book buyers to build your buyer list. Offer to deliver
direct. Wholesalers often like this arrangement as it saves them delivery costs and you
can impress the buyer with good fast service and hopefully win him over as a client
forever (assuming the wholesaler gets the order to you quickly).
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If this is not possible, such as in book stores, put an ad in your publication so readers have
an incentive to send you their names and addresses.
The final wholesale deal is the royalty deal. In a royalty deal, you don't do anything
except deliver the manuscript (and sometimes help sell by going on a selling tour-normally
at the publisher's expense). The publisher edits, prepares, prints, markets and sells the
books.
A typical non-publishing writer makes his money from royalties.
Sometimes another publisher will offer you as a publisher a royalty deal on a book you have
published.
The upside is you have little to do, except create the publication and then watch the money
roll in. The downside is you have very little control. It is worthwhile knowing about royalty
deals in case one comes along. They are the rarest form of deal in the publishing business
and eliminate risk.
If you do a royalty deal, the same three rules apply.
#1: Make sure you don't sell at an unprofitable price.
#2: Make sure that you have a way of getting paid.
#3: Make sure the buyers will get what the publisher offers. If a publisher sells
your book and does not deliver, the negativity could spill onto you.
The third wholesale channel is PR or press releases (PR) and endorsements.
Magazine, newspaper and newsletter editors spend most of their working days looking for
things to say in their publications. They love you when you send them news of interest to
their readers.
Recently when selling courses on how to speak Spanish through a series of health related
community magazines, I created the following Press Release:
Community magazine sponsors Spanish program.
Community Health magazines have teamed up with Ecuador’s Simon Bolivar
Spanish school to offering a special Spanish program that takes students to all
three regions of Ecuador; the Amazon jungle, the Pacific coast and the Andes
highlands to learn the Spanish language and culture as well.
The local publisher of this nationally franchised magazine said, “Our publication is
a guide to a healthier, more balanced life. Creativity, humanitarianism and
prosperity come in many forms, but all require understanding, communications
and inspiration.
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“Spanish is the second largest language in the world yet our language system
does not teach us how to communicate with or understand this culture. We are
sponsoring this course because it is such an inexpensive yet effective way, to
learn Spanish so we can better communicate with and understand our neighbors.”
Simon Bolivar is the largest Spanish school in Ecuador and is the only school
there that has an agreement with a major Ecuadorian university to grant college
credits for its courses. The program is called “Discover Ecuador for Learning
Spanish” and includes Spanish lessons at four destinations in Ecuador plus a free
weekend trip to Papallacta Spa, one of the top spas in Ecuador. This spa consists
of all natural volcanic springs ranging from fiery hot to cold, located in a high and
remote mountain valley. At night guests lie in naturally warm pool to watch the
clarity of the stars at the 11,000 foot altitude. The restaurant serves only organic
food.
The course begins in Quito, Ecuador’s capital, and then students head for the
Amazon Jungle where they stay in a rain forest. The third study session is in
Cuenca one of South America’s most preserved colonial cities. The final session
takes place on the Pacific Ocean at Alandaluz, an award winning ecological center
made of bamboo.
Students also visit Isla de la Plata, an island just off the coast that is called the
“Poorman’s Galapagos” famous as home for many animals best known on the
Galapagos lslands (also of Ecuador) including the blue footed boobies.
The entire three week course includes:
* 76 hours of Spanish instruction
* Accommodation with families in Quito and Cuenca, all meals included
* All weekdays activities in Quito and Cuenca
* City tours in Quito and Cuenca
* Accommodation, meals and guided trips at the jungle lodge
* Accommodation and trip to Isla de la Plata at the coast
* Weekend stay at “Termas de Papallacta” (one night with 4 meals and
entrance to the hot springs included)
* All transportation between the locations (public transportation, bus)
* Airport pickup in Quito
* Internet in Quito and Cuenca
* Ecuador map
Community Health is a nationally franchised magazine that provides both local
and global insights and information to improve the quality of life physically,
mentally, emotionally and spiritually. The magazine is currently published in 32
cites including (name of local city) and reaches over 1 million readers a month
and is distributed free in selected stores, health and education centers, healing
centers, public libraries and wherever free publications are generally seen.
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This gave the community health magazines a way to get readers of other publications to
look for the community health magazines and see the ads.
My experience has been that newsletters and magazines offer much better PR opportunity
than newspapers because they are more likely to put a name and address in the press
release.
I sent the same Press Release above to a magazine about international travel and received
almost 500 inquiries and sold over $50,000 worth of those courses.
PR offers excellent potential and I regularly send out press releases. The releases I use fall
into three categories:
#1: Articles.
#2: Press Releases.
#3: Publication assistance.
I continually create articles related to books I sell and make them available for publication.
I offer them to editors, not publishers. I offer them at no cost if they mention my name and
address and the fact that I have a book, report, course or newsletter to sell.
These are good articles and it is a heck of a deal for the publisher and the editor. The editor
gets an article to fill up space. The publisher saves a writer's fee. I usually get more in
sales than I would have from a writers fee.
Sometimes the publication pays me anyhow. That's the best deal of all!
If you use this approach make sure that the articles are informative and not just self
promotions. Having good articles is tied to being expert in the field you are publishing. If
the articles are informative, unique and interesting, they should get exposure. If they read
like a sales piece, your chances of success are drastically reduced.
I systematically send my articles to editors of magazines and newsletters that publish
information about international travel and or investment. I slant the article to match the
publication. For example if a magazine is about investing, the article might start right off
covering the benefits of some international investment technique. However, if the magazine
were about international travel, I might start the article by writing how investment
opportunities abroad is one reason to be an international traveler!
The article would be the same but one sentence can change the whole slant of the article.
The second part of my PR system is a press release program.
I have a PR list. This is a list of publications that have a focus similar to mine. When I do
something that is newsworthy, such as put on a seminar, update a report, release a new
book or whatever, I send a press release to the list.
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This is such a good way to get business that some publishing firms survive on this system
alone.
To create your PR system, study magazines and newspapers, find out what they write about
and understand the types of information they are looking for. Contact the editor and ask
what he or she is looking for.
Some businesses run on PR alone. For example, Merri had a small publishing venture that
published information about English titles for sale. The typical title was a Lordship of
the Manor. This was such an interesting subject that it was quite easy to get newspapers to
print stories about this publication.
This often led to the sale of the title itself. She was so successful that it was eventually
picked up by Gary Trudeau in his Doonesbury comic strip. The only regret in that PR was
that there was no real way to capitalize on it. His comic strips obviously didn't include the
businesses name and address!
Another publisher sold Camouflage Passports. These were documents that looked like
passports, but were issued for countries that did not exist.
The point of having a camo passport was for protection against terrorists. If the terrorists
were looking for American hostages, the owners of these documents could whip out their
fake passport to prove they were not Americans. Hopefully the terrorists had not taken a
lot of geography in school.
This was such an interesting and unique business that it was able to run almost entirely on
the PR from magazines and newspapers. When they were written up in the WALL STREET
JOURNAL, business poured in. I wrote about them in my newsletter and know they got
hundreds of orders (at $185 each) from my readers alone.
PR can be a big money winner for your publications. Lots of stories in other publications can
also build name recognition and demand for your books and your firm. This is one channel
well worth using in your business.
One More Wholesale
I use wholesale channels when and wherever they present themselves. The biggest profit
maker in my business is an entirely different wholesale channel.
My best wholesale channel is my existing readers. Word of mouth and repeat
sales from satisfied customers! This is the best earner of all and these sales are the
most satisfying because they say “job well done!”
Assignment
Keeping a tight focus is an important in wholesale marketing. You want to offer PI and co
Op deals to publications that have a focus which fits your product.
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This is also true in developing publicity. For example, when thinking PR don't neglect your
local newspaper, regional magazines and bookstores. All of these are vitally interested in
LOCAL news and you may be able to develop book signing parties at local book stores
because the focus is ‘what’s going on in the area.”.
Your assignment in this lesson is to select wholesale targets through focus.
Look back at the fifth check on your idea checklist in which you focus the market.
Make a list of publications you could use for PI and PR.
For example the focus I have on my “Flee Flea” report are on people who use holistic
veterinarians, dog trainers and those who buy food for their pets in health food stores.
There are a number of holistic dog trainers and vets in the area.
Make a list of publications that you would like to advertise in. Get the name of the
publisher.
Make a list of the editors. Look at the types of information that they are writing about.
Write a test PR piece that is focused to these publications.
Make a list of local places and/or publications that would be interested in writing about what
you are doing because you are local, you are doing something different and interesting and
thus you are good local news.
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Lesson Eleven
Websites & the Internet
Dawn rises in thin veils over purple mountains then melt in a salmon orange sky.
Distant roosters crow. Silence descends. Horses graze with llamas in the dewdampened grasslands that fade into valleys below.
Rosaspamba, the Place of the Roses, Ecuador. Merri and I arrived in Ecuador and fell
in love with the country. So after living in Florida for 20 years and building our business
there we decided to pack up and move!
But what about the business? How could I run things from the remote Andean plantation
where we decided to live? Then technology stepped in. Use the Internet! And that is what
we have done, reinvented our business so we expand yet operate mainly over the Internet.
But how could we expand and create an internet business without building an organization?
Merri's and my goal has been to keep our business small.
Our goal became to shift the focus of our business and gain more freedom at the same
time. Since publishing had been so good to us financially, money was of less concern,
quality of life more.
We recognized that what we loved most and our greatest strength was our
research capabilities so we devised a plan based around this. Our first step was to
shut down our printed newsletter. Then we began to develop more strategic partnerships
by writing more magazine articles. The idea was for other magazines and newsletter to
become our allies.
This was an existing activity, but we stepped up the pace. In each article, we mentioned our
website. Our goal was to build a well focused band of readers who read our ezine, a daily
message that would hopefully inform, excite and entice our readers to buy our publications.
Then we combined this idea with our new love, Ecuador. We decided that one area of our
focus was to write about Ecuador.
The plan was simple. Write articles about Ecuador that would attract interested readers to
the website where there was more information about Ecuador. This built a following of
readers who came to the site after reading articles about business and investing
opportunities in the Andes and the Amazon.
Then we published reports about Ecuador and developed tours to Ecuador. The plan has
worked. In a decade we have sold millions of dollars of Ecuador reports, products and
tours.
The next step was in our plan to encourage other publishers to offer our existing
printed courses. In short we began wholesaling our courses. This very course is an
example of the success in this venture. In the past we would have published and fulfilled
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this course ourselves. Now others publish it and we can spend more time researching and
writing about this subject.
The plan is working, and thousands of copies of courses have been sold by other publishers.
We earn royalties. Plus this exposes my website address! www.garyscott.com www.garyscott.com - www.garyscott.com (Get the point?)
Part of the strategy was to create a website. I knew nothing about this when I began,
so I simply followed the strategy I had used in my newsletter marketing which was to give
our readers lots of useful, credible, interesting information FREE.
We wanted our website to attract readers again and again. That site now has millions of
words, nearly two thousand pages of free info we have provided over the past five years.
This has brought in millions in sales and taught us innumerable lessons.
We also moved. Our residence shifted from the city (Naples) to two remote farms. We
developed retreat centers both in North Carolina and Ecuador where we conduct seminars
which we sell through the website. This has worked well and has grown hand in hand with
our tours to Ecuador. We find that delegates who come to North Carolina have such a good
time they want to come with us to Ecuador. Those in Ecuador are so happy that they want
to come to North Carolina. You can learn about our seminar center at
www.littlehorsecreek.com
This has been a lot of change, none concerned with business or money. Our concern has
been with freedom, fulfillment and quality of life. We earn much less now then when we
had a printed publishing business, but we don’t work as hard.
In important ways, our business has not changed at all. Merri and I still research
and write. We still share our experiences with readers. Yet our strategic ventures
and the Internet give us even more freedom and mobility. We live where we
desire without having to worry about access to a city, labor force, etc. We can
live anywhere and still expand our markets without working more. We have freed
ourselves from printers and deadlines and paper fulfillment roles.
The internet is so important that this lesson focuses on how we have changed our business
from being a paper publisher to an electronic publisher and also shows how the more things
change, the more they stay the same.
All the lessons we have examined in this course apply to the net. One can use the
net exclusively as a business or use it as one element of a multifaceted publishing business.
We began building our Internet business by answering the question “What is the purpose
and what is the goal of being online? We did not want to have a website just because
everyone else did. We defined clear goals because the vastness of the Internet creates
opportunity but also poses a huge problems of focus. The Internet is like a humongous fair.
There are thousands of highly competitive stalls at the fair. Unless you build your site
correctly, you gain little business. The fact your stall is almost free makes little difference.
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This compounds your challenge. Every Tom, Dick and Harry who thinks there are free
lunches will pitch tents at the market as well.
The size and complication of getting reached at the Internet are foreboding. We must
proceed as if we were pitching a tent at a very crowded fair (which is becoming immensely
more crowded).
We knew that we must reach out and build a reputation. If we had a tent pitched at a fair
there would be seven things you could do:
#1: Have a product so unique and so exclusive that buyers would seek out your
stall in their pursuit of the product.
#2: Hire salesmen to go into the crowds and bring them back to our stall.
#3: Advertise outside the fair so people would come looking for our stall.
#4: Put up signs at the fair so people would seek out our stall.
#5: Offer free samples at our stall to get people to stop in.
#6: Offer everyone a way of letting us keep in touch with them.
#7: Have the brightest, fanciest stall at the fair.
Let’s review each of these steps and how Merri and I are doing this. We begin with the
three areas of focus in our business. Our mantra is “Make our readers lives better by
providing unique, interesting, usable, credible information on international investing,
international business and holistic, healthy ways of life.”
#1: Let’s look first at our unique products. The main product that Merri and I have are
our experiences and the happy experiences of many of our readers. We are competing with
some very large firms that have huge staffs, far more knowledge, more capital and much
greater resources than we do. We need a very fine focus and uniqueness to survive.
This puts us in a position where we have to turn our smallness and uniqueness into an asset
and we begin this process with unique products. This means I don’t have to compete headon with a hundred other identical products offered at identical websites. If I manage to get
someone to our website to look at our products I know they cannot then go out and search
for the same product to see if they can get it for less.
A specific example is our Ecuador report. Since we offer tours to Ecuador I provide a great
deal of information about Ecuador at our website. Our plan is to attract readers in many
ways (we’ll get to this in a moment) by offering free information reports and ideas about
investing living and visiting Ecuador. One readers get to the site we then offer an 82 page
report on Ecuador for $49.
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This report is a totally unique report about what, where Merri and I have done and are doing
in Ecuador. There is no other report like it. This report gains a special energy because we
are so similar to so many ways to our readers. The reader gains comfort from the “if they
can do it so can we” aspect of this report.
This report also then leads to other unique products that Merri and I offer in Ecuador such
as a totally unique language school, totally unique business courses, totally unique real
estate tours and such.
The key to marketing this is that each step leads to the next. Our free report sells Ecuador,
the opportunity and us, our uniqueness and yet how similar we are to the reader. If that
free report excites the reader enough that he or she wishes to buy, there is only one place
to get that totally unique report.
Now let’s look at an error we made early on with our website marketing.
In the early stages of marketing health ideas and products through our website, we began
selling a multivitamin product called Beyond Chelation. This was a product we used and
liked but was not our own totally unique product.
I offered this at my site because we found it very helpful to our health oriented readers
because this is a food supplement that can reduce hardening of the arteries. This is a huge
medical problem in modern society. BC helps reduce this concern inexpensively and
conveniently for many. You can read about this at
http://www.garyascott.com/health/591/index.html
Beyond Chelation fits into our healthy living focus and though our readers would like to buy
this. I was right. We sold a lot of the product. Yet overall the idea was wrong.
I sold tens of thousands of dollars worth of this product at my site to my existing readers
because I had established credibility with my readers (more on this in a moment) and if I
tell them I use a product and why many will buy it.
This regrettably was where the benefit ended. I could only sell BC to existing clients. There
was no pull for me at the search engines because this product is offered by many companies
and health food stores. I went to the askjeeves.com search engine and typed in “Beyond
Chelation.” Hundreds of hits came up. Our site is fiftieth in line. This makes me an alsoran net provider with this product, essentially a waste of time.
The sale of the product also did not lead me to the sale of any other product. In fact the
opposite was happening. When I introduced a customer to BC, the company began to sell
other products directly to the reader. I lost control.
There was something worse. BC began offering specials (including BC) to the reader at
lower prices than I was selling. I could not compete with my supplier!
Even worse, at times BC was remiss in giving prompt delivery to my readers. Guess who
was called when a delivery did not arrive? BC or me?
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Finally because I was retailing a product that did not have a spectacular wholesale price that
was offered by many competitors, my margins were thin.
In short we were being poorly paid to give away customers, creating our own competitor
and to building client dissatisfaction. There were numerous ways we could have remedied
this problem, but only one if we wanted to remain a small business without inventory and
staff.
We dropped BC as a product.
The lesson here is that small businesses should not compete with generic words or products
over the net.
When your product is unique you can use the Internet to get orders while enhancing your
reputation and building a list of potential buyers. This can also indirectly hire salesmen to
go into the crowds and bring buyers back to your stall which is the second step in competing
at the fair.
#2: Get salesmen to go into the crowds and bring buyers back to your stall FREE!
This approach to building my healthy living focus through the Internet can be seen with my
novel marketing. I typed in the words “65th Octave” (the name of my novel) at the same
search engine. The first 50 pages all sell my novel. Many of these addresses shown in
these first hits are for my site, but many others are marketing my book as well.
Amazon.com, Walmart.com and many other sites show up. Seeing my name in all these
places certainly institutionalizes the Gary Scott brand.
One leading book promoter wrote:
This book is incredible. It is easy to read and get into the story. After a while I
realized what seemed like a simple adventure was brim-full of intrigue, adventure
and suspense. But for me the story in the book was the *real* lessons I learned;
revelations of what I would call life principles. A fascinating and immensely
enjoyable read.
In this instance Wall Mart and Amazon.com are my salesmen and bring people closer to my
website because if you see the words 65th Octave, you also see the name Gary Scott. If you
type in the words Gary Scott at any search engine you will on the first page of rankings
learn about me.
This is the type of outside help that can make a product really take off, and though this
book has not been a huge marketing success on its own, it has taught me how to own a
word in the search engines with unique products and this has brought many readers to my
products and site.
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#3: Put up signs at the fair so people would seek out your stall.
The signs used at the internet are called key words. These key words are like billboards,
proclaiming what your business has to offer and the highways where they are placed are
called search engines.
Intelligent placement at your website of key words that relate to the focus of your
product allows search engines to find your key words (your billboards) and place
them on their highways (search engine rankings).
For example, one of the key word phrases I use that fits both our Ecuador focus and our
healthy living focus is the phrase “Andean healing”. For our website promoting our healing
tours to Ecuador we are in the top twenty. I am pretty sure I have something to offer to
people who are interested in Andean healing. Those who type those words into a search
engine are likely to find out about my website.
In another example one area of international business focus our business has is Ecuador
real estate. At the time this course was written if you typed in the phrase “Ecuador real
estate”, two of the top ten listings are mine and lead to my website. They lead to
www.garyscott.com/courses/222,
This site which markets my unique real estate tours to the equator. This is a
pretty good bill board (key words), sitting on a pretty busy highway that is
correctly focused for those who come by. Chances are if someone wants to learn
more about investing in or buying Ecuador real estate our business can help.
Chances are if they use the key words “Ecuador real estate” at a search engine on
the internet, they will learn about my website.
Yet getting the right sign on the correct highway is not always that easy and the
rules for how to get it right keep changing.
This is wonderful in one way because anyone can still come into the internet and
compete. Daily I am battling huge companies such as Wall Mart, Amazon.com,
Merrill Lynch and such and many times I win. That’s the good news.
The bad news is that by the time this course has been published a lot of what
works now may no longer work. So the best I can do is share what we are trying
now and say that you should start there but recognize that your “search engine –
key word” system will need to evolve as the market changes.
So having said this let’s look at philosophies we are using and ways we are
developing our website.
Before doing this though let me be clear about my success with search engines
and our websites. We are a small business. We are enjoying a nice annual six
figure income from our website. This pays for the lifestyle we enjoy, allows us
incredible freedom. This is very small potatoes as Merri and I are happy to be. We
have no staff, little responsibility and live a very enjoyable life traveling between
our North Carolina farm, Naples condo and Ecuador hacienda.
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But there can be much more. A friend of ours that has a much larger publishing
company starting doing epublishing about the same time I did. This year his
business will sell about $80 million of information over the internet. He is
currently offering an entire course on how to develop a website business, so if you
want to have a large business you may want to consider this course at the Agora
Institute.
I have not taken this course so cannot say how much it adds to what we are doing,
but I suspect that this course will add a lot of knowledge on how to enhance the
website aspect of your business.
On the other hand if you want to start just small knowing what we are doing may
be enough.
There are two aspects to a website. One is the visual (what the customer sees)
and the other is non-visual (What the computer sees). Most of the money spent in
developing a website is spent on the visual. Most developers spend a ton of their
client’s money developing the visual side of things (to impress the person
employing them). On the other hand the website developers spend very little time
or energy trying on the non-visual (getting paying customer traffic to the
website). The result is a pretty site that sells little or nothing.
#4: Offer free samples at your stall to get people to stop in.
I offer a free course entitled International Currencies Made EZ to attract investors to the
international investing focus at my site. To see how this tactic was working, I typed in the
words “International Currencies”. The third and fourth addresses that come up are mine,
and anyone clicking those comes to http://www.garyascott.com/news/currez/index.html,
which says: “International Currencies Made EZ is a total of 15 chapters and about 150
pages. You can access each chapter from here plus a Glossary of terms FREE.” This has
brought plenty of business from the web.
Offer everyone a way of letting you keep in touch with them.
Anyone who comes to my site is offered a chance to sign up for daily messages that I send
out. You can see how I keep in touch, sell my products and services and build credibility in
this way. Take a look at the article archive at www.garyascott.com and you’ll see many
years’ worth of these messages.
I’m having success getting my site and my products highly visible on the web because my
products are unique and they reflect unique experiences in international investing, business,
travel and health.
Have the brightest, fanciest stall at the fair. I focus here on function. Like my
newsletters and reports, my graphics at my website are more concerned with function. A
fast download, quick and easy access to information and easy navigation through the site
seem more important to me than fancy graphics. My reputation has always come from the
function of my products and information, not the form. I focus on providing quick access to
vital fresh economic information.
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Be Credible. Spam and the vast amounts of data being thrown at readers is a critical
aspect of working on the Internet. Many readers have so many messages clogging their
addresses that reaching them is harder. This can be a hurdle and a benefit.
The hurdle is that it is harder to gain access to your reader. You face two obstacles, the
first being the spam filter. I send a daily email to thousands of readers, each being
someone who has requested that we send this daily message to them.
The benefit is that focus and intimacy can be real benefits of the net. My approach
has been to use the Internet as a device to come closer and get to know and
develop the respect of my readers more. I use the Internet to develop a business
intimacy and friendship with my readers.
I have done this in three ways. First, I send my readers a message every single working
day. Second, I welcome questions and third, I attempt to get an answer for every question
my readers send. This means more work, but has developed a loyalty from my readers. I
get stacks of raves from them thanking me for the information and help.
The data I send aims at the three areas of focus in our business, international investing,
business and holistic healthy living.
Then at the end of each message I insert an advertisement, sometimes for my books,
reports, seminars and courses, sometimes for other things and sometimes paid ads
someone else is running. I earn the right to send them an ad by giving them some useful,
interesting idea that will help their lives through investing business or healthy living.
• Access. Because access is becoming so difficult, I strive to make the name Gary A. Scott
important to them so when they see this name in the “from” portion of their message box
they will click onto it.
I also try to have an interesting, but very short subject line. Here are examples of a few of
the subject titles I recently used:
“Abundance”
“Dirty money” (A story about the potential convertibility of Chinese yuan)
“Quito and pensions” (How to invest pension funds in overseas real estate)
“Buy Ecuadorian condos for $2,500” (Tells about how to do just that)
“Quantum science brings profit”
The only goal of the headline is to get the reader to look at my email lead. When
they look at the email lead it is normally a very short teaser with the next goal - to get the
readers to click into our website and read the message. Here are examples of what I mean
by email lead. Look again at the headlines above – The leads below are their corresponding
message:
Headline: Abundance
Lead: Every time you go to our website, you receive a special gift. There is a background
color of Golden-Orange on every page. Move around the site. See how the pictures
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change. Notice at times all that you see is a full page of Golden-Orange at link to site.
There is a reason for this you can learn at the Gary Scott website.
Dirty Money
Here is a message about the Chinese yuan from a friend who lives in China. Learn the profit
and the risk at the Gary Scott website at:
Quito Land and Pensions
A note from eclub advisor, Larry Grossman, shows how to put overseas real estate into your
pension plan. See here what he says at the Gary Scott website at.
There are two ways to deal with an ezine such as I send each day. One way is to simply
email the entire message. This has the fastest, easiest download to begin.
The second way is to do as I do and send a short teaser email aimed at getting the readers
to click onto the site. There are two reasons I like (at this time) the second way best.
First, I tested both systems by splitting my list in two and sending half one way and half the
other. The half that received the teaser and clicked onto the site bought 30% more
products than the ones who received just the email. Then I switched and sent those
receiving the teaser the whole email and vice versa. The higher sales swing from the one
group to the other.
This alone convinced me to use the teaser system.
Using this system is also a bit easier because it gives me an easy way to look at the success
of headlines, etc. by simply looking at how many people visit the site each day.
All this aims at improving my access to my readers. Next comes keeping their attention.
• Attention. We live in a world that has so many time saving devices, we have no time left.
Everyone is so busy! Why in the heck should anyone spend some of their valuable time
reading whatever message I have sent? I hope because the data is valuable, interesting,
focused, short and to the point. I have continued to shorten the content in my messages.
Finally, on Saturday, I send a review of all five messages just in case anyone missed what I
sent during the week.
• Credibility. In the long run nothing is more important. I believe that as the Internet
becomes more crowded, and as the world becomes a more cynical place, credibility and
making the customer know you really care and deliver a good product will be the key for
success.
Offering “try before you buy” downloads is a good way to establish an initial rapport with
your customer. In exchange for his or her email address (which you should endeavor to
obtain when anyone visits your website) gives them something useful. It could be a short
“electronic publication”.
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Here is an example of one great list builder I have used called the Ancient Mariner. I wrote
this and have sent it to my readers several times. Each sending helped increase my email
list.
Title: Ancient Legends Can Bring Everlasting Wealth
Lead: There is an almost forgotten legend about an ancient race called the Lossen. They
were a great and advanced ocean tribe that sailed the Pacific bringing wealth that no others
possessed. Learn how to have such wealth as well. Go to Gary Scott’s site at:
Text: There is an almost forgotten legend about an ancient race called the Lossen. They
were a great and advanced ocean tribe that sailed the Pacific bringing wealth that no others
possessed. There was a famous Ship's Master, Turth, who was famed for always returning
with treasures of silver, gold and precious gems that made him rich and powerful. Yet Turth,
unlike others, remained humble and treated his men honestly and well.
One day, so the legend goes, Turth was approached by an apprentice called Reekes.
"Master, may I ask for help?"
This young man was the master's best assistant, honest and loyal so the master bid him to
sit and speak.
"Master," said the young apprentice, "you have seen me work hard in your service, but may
not know that unlike many, I have saved all my wages. Avoiding alluring temptations of port
has helped make me financially strong.
"I now have enough to purchase a vessel and sail for rich cargo, but I need help from you.
You seem to know of riches even before you sail. Your ships cross great waters safely and
swiftly. Please share with me these secrets that keep the wind full in your sails."
The Captain leaned back, gazed over the calm Pacific and waited some time in silence
before he quietly began to answer the young man.
"Son, you have served me well. This means fate will be good for you on the sea. I will speak
of this knowledge though I do not share it easily. These lessons are not for those who want
riches without work.
"There are three lessons to heed. First, know that a full wind singing in your sails is useless,
even dangerous, if you do not have a rudder that is well kept. The currents and winds are
strong. Treachery is their nature and they feast on those who desire speed without control.
Correct steering is more important than speed."
The old Captain then stood and walked to the water's edge, recalling many memories as he
continued. "But steering is useless without direction. If your rudder is large and your sextant
small, you'll travel to the wrong shores. So pay great attention to celestial beings. These
forces greater than ourselves lead us in the correct way. Without them you cannot know
where to go or where you have been. You may gain great speed and steer correctly, but you
will surely be lost.
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"Finally," the Captain sighed as he returned to his seat, "you must have a sturdy anchor and
stout line." Even the best voyage has times when skies are not clear. You must be steady in
times of uncertainty.
"These three secrets have served me well. Follow the heavens. Steer correctly. Then look
for strong winds to increase your speed. When good conditions are not present, rely on your
anchor. Do not be afraid to wait.
"Now go my son and may the winds be with you!"
By the way, the young man left and sailed on his new vessel the very next morn. Soon after
the master set sail himself, found more treasure and returned many months later his ships
heavy with silver and gold. As his vessel returned to port Turth saw the young apprentice
standing shipside, looking bedraggled and poor.
"Master," said the youth as the Captain disembarked, "I have long waited for your return as
I seek employment on your vessel again. Our ship left port with a sturdy rudder, good
sextant and anchor, but less than a week from this port we were caught in an unexpected,
fierce storm. We floundered in hurricane winds and raging seas. All was lost. I still wish to
become my own master, but must start again. Can you give me work and more training to
help me avoid such storms?"
To learn the master's reply go here to read the second part of the story go to
http://www.natawake.com/mariner1.html
Thousands have given me their email and passed this story on to others.
Sending your readers useful and interesting data is important in building
credibility. Anything you can do online to show you are more than just a “virtual”
business is a good thing. This could be in the form of quotes from existing clients,
press clippings, clips from news items on TV or radio, etc. You are trying to
establish rapport and build credibility with your potential customer.
Making Money with Your Website
The business of running a website is the sum of two numbers: Number of visitors times
the conversion rate. To double your business, you can double your visitors using
techniques such as those examined above. Or the other way to make more money is to
increase the ways you earn from the site.
There are many ways to make money from your (online) business. These include:
• Selling products and services: The most obvious way of making money. You are
marketing to a global audience and it is worth trying out new ideas and new products or
services that may not have worked too well in your home country before.
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• Advertising: You can sell advertising on your own website. If you have a website that
sells specialist cake-baking ingredients, then offering a banner advert to a manufacturer of a
specialist food mixer may be one area worth exploring as an example.
• Associates/Affiliates programs: Amazon.com and barnesandnoble.com (among
others) offer a facility where by placing a link to a specific book/s on your website, when
someone buys that book you get up to 15% in commission. Many online CD retailers offer
this, too. This could be a way of enhancing the income-creating potential of your website.
• Sell your expertise: You may not be an expert at creating a website but you are (or soon
will be!) an expert at creating YOUR website! Document everything you do and share your
experience. Start an online newsletter for people in your area of business. “The Secrets to
Effective Ranching” or “Running a Profitable Catering Website”. People can email you their
own experience and you can build a vast base of skills and experience by sharing knowledge
with others. This can help your own online promotional efforts.
• Build an online community: The Internet allows people to form social groups like never
before. Why not bring together all the people globally who have the same interests as you
and make a profit from doing this? When you bring together people with similar interests as
you, what happens is that you start to make money doing something you love. You will
never do a “day’s work” again. The Internet allows you to do this at a remarkably low cost.
Things to Do
Dream and create. Think about your business and what you would like to achieve with it by
using the Internet as the publishing and disseminating medium.
Play (on and with the Internet). Observe with new eyes what people are doing
with their business on the Internet and be alert to picking up ideas and, “Wouldn’t
it be good if I could do that?” moments.
See how these ideas can be used within your business and then discuss with your technical
helper or Webmaster how you can give wings to your ideas.
Where to Start
There are millions of websites and thousands of web designers eager to create a million
more websites.
But you don’t need a website. You need an Internet presence. Just having a website is
leaving too much to chance by dropping your content on the Internet and hoping for the
best. “If you build it, he will come,” is not true of websites.
“A writer writes, then sells. Publishers sell, then write.” Similarly, being extremely mindful of
the marketing, promotion and advertising of your website is essential to your success
online.
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If you decide to use a website to increase your business, you can either hire someone or
buy a program and create it yourself. You need a web hosting company to host your website
content. A hosting company places your website on one of their computers (servers) and
makes it available via their Internet connection.
There are several ways to then engage your readers. One is to run an online blog web log - or online journal. Blogging is a way of managing your websites.
Blogging allows your readers to add their comments to yours and there are a
number of free or low cost software systems that help you promote your blog to
the blogging community. Many blogs (indeed, the very spirit of blogging) will
allow readers to leave comments and contribute to your online blog.
RSS stands for Real Simple Syndication and is another way to reach readers. RSS allows
you to create content feeds from your website that people can subscribe to. When you
publish new content that information appears as being new or updated content and anyone
who has subscribed will receive that content.
RSS feeds can be incorporated into website content. For example, if your website is about
tropical fish, you could link a part of your website to the RSS content feed from a tropical
fish magazine. When that magazine publishes new syndicated content, the part of your
website containing that RSS feed would update with the new content.
You could create a whole website of syndicated content in topics that interest you. Build an
email list based on your own editorial comments from all the RSS feeds, offer the full feeds
at your website. In the email newsletter and on your website, intersperse advertisements
for your products within the RSS content. A huge aspect of running a website is keeping
content fresh. RSS allows you to do that.
RSS also allows you to circumvent spam-filtering software. You may have only experienced
receiving spam to date and are pleased that much of this is filtered. However, most spam
filtering software is rather indiscriminate and if your email contains too many words or
phrases that trigger a spam filter’s rules, you will find that your readers start to complain
they are not receiving your email messages.
If your readers are subscribing to your RSS feed, you bypass all spam filters and people
receiving your content as soon as you publish it. Offer and use email, RSS, every method
that can win you business.
Search Engines
Another way to reach readers is to have your website well placed with search engines.
Search engines and the way they operate continue to evolve and after numerous years we
have built our site so we receive between 20,000 to 30,000 visits a month. A lot of these
come from search engines. This is very small potatoes compared to many sites, but we were
pleased to have done this without spam or spending a penny of capital on advertising
outside the website. We have seen steady growth in sales from the site. Our business has
always been based on having well focused groups of readers and small is not always bad.
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The business from this small number of visits is well into the six figures, and supports our
life-style as it comfortably grows, because the readers who reach our site are very focused.
More importantly when this business explodes in an upwards spurt, we can handle the
growth without bringing in extra staff.
Our initial growth came without any focus on search engines. Then we figured out
that search engines could help and redesigned our entire web program to work
more efficiently through search engines I have seen steady growth in visits and
business coming through the search engine since.
Search engine optimization is important in the design process of a website. There are two
types of search engines: paid and unpaid. Some are hybrids. Since indexing with the unpaid
engines (crawler engines) is slow, you can speed up the process if you use paid engines
(Yahoo! and Overture). We have not tried this approach yet but probably will as we increase
our website presence.
The free index (directory) strategy should begin with your website name. This is one aspect
of my business I am changing now. My website was and is www.garyascottt.com. This
means nothing in the search field. People usually do not type in garyascott to solve
problems. They type in “international bonds” or “Ecuador real estate” or “weight loss”.
So we have been adding sites such as spotting trends.com (we are up to #12 at Google if
you type search trends there) that cover one area of our focus and lead to the garyascott
site.
Directory search engines create their lists based on the name of your business. You get
better rankings within the directory if your focus is in your website name. You can beef up
your visits by using words that are searched often. One popular strategy is to use words
that pertain to sex or gambling. This makes no sense. Focus is the key, not numbers. I
would rather have one person interested in my product visit the site rather than 100 who
stumble across the site while they look for something else and then move on.
If you had a business selling paint, would you place an ad in the telephone book Yellow
Pages under escort services? The answer is no. Make your name and stick to your
focus!
For example if your website is selling fantasy paints, a good domain name is fantasypaints.com. The contact page should show the name of the company as Fantasy Paints. If
the contact page showed the name of the company as Gary Scott Associates, then Yahoo
and Open Directory may list Gary Scott as the title of the website, not Fantasy Paints.
Here are a few tips:
1. Name your business by your most important key phrase.
2. Make the key phrase your domain name, separated by hyphens, not spaces.
3. Use this name throughout the website and on your home page and Contact Us page.
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The second strategy uses pay-per-click search engines where you bid on
your keyword(s) by the click through. If your competitor is number one on
your keyword phrase, and is bidding $.15/click you can bid $.16/click and
you become number one. He in turn, is free to change his bid to $.17 and so
on.
Overture is one of the pay for clicks engines and is not that important in the
grand scheme of things. However Overture has contracted with several top
search engines so if you are top bidder on Overture keyword, you receive
preferred placement as a “sponsor” at Yahoo!, Alta Vista, HotBot & Lycos
to name a few.
To keep costs in hand define your key words very clearly. For example if I
am offering reports on Ecuador real estate, I would not bid on “real estate”.
Instead I would refine the focus to international real estate or Ecuador real
estate.
Crawler search engines requires a more technical strategy. Find a webmaster who is
familiar with html code if you are not and work with him or her to aim your focus at the
algorithms that are currently in effect.
In addition to search engines you can bring people to your site by:
• Integrating Offline and Online: Your website is not “out there!” It is a key that your
online and offline business are well integrated so having your business card, letterhead,
answering machine message, fax header, etc., with your web and email address on are
essential in creating visitors to your website.
• Contact the media: It is worth contacting the media in your local area and any trade
press in your professional area to tell them about your website.
• E-Mail signature: Simple but effective. At the foot of every email you send should be
your website address and your contact details with a short description of your website.
• Online newsgroups: There are over 30,000 online newsgroups. There will be some that
are relevant to your new website. Ask your ISP how you can connect to their newsgroup
server. When connected, you can use your newsgroup software to do a search for keywords
relevant to your new website content. I suggest rather than posting a blatant advert about
your website to have an email signature at the foot of any postings you make to this
newsgroup.
• Start a Mailing List: Sites such as E Groups at http://www.egroups.com allow you to
create an online mailing list to keep in contact with your customers and prospective clients.
The service is free. Make sure that you use your email signature at the foot of all your posts
to the newsgroup!
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• E-mail lists: You will notice that many websites offer their own emailing lists. You should
join ones that interest you and feel free to post to these newsgroups. Don’t forget that
blatantly advertising your own website may not be appreciated but do remember to add
your email signature to the foot of all your posts to the list.
• Forums on AOL and Yahoo: Yahoo and America Online are proprietary services and
while they specifically prohibit advertising competing services, a small announcement in
the newsgroup of a specific forum area on Yahoo and AOL about your new website, which is
relevant to the topics within a certain forum should be OK.
• Reciprocal website links: Offering to share reciprocal links with other website owners
who have a website that complement your own website is a good idea. You will find this
increases your own traffic quite successfully.
• Banner adverts: Services such as Link Exchange http://www.linkexchange.com can help
increase the traffic to your website by placing a reciprocal banner at your website and other
websites who have indicated they want to have the same types of banners (including the
banner for your site). Worth trying but if your web log files not indicate any referrals from
Link Exchange you can remove the service.
• On-site promos and events: Is there a special celebrity in your business area who would
“appear” at your website to answer questions from your customers? This or a similar event
is a great way of increasing traffic if you have plenty of time to promote it beforehand.
• Direct email: Sending email, unsolicited, to thousands of people is known as SPAM and I
do not recommend doing this. It will not win you any online friends, probably no online
business and in some States is actually illegal. But maintaining a mailing list of people who
are interested in what you have to offer and occasionally emailing them with details of what
you have to offer is a good idea.
• Who is succeeding? Search online for people offering the same as you. Use the same
keywords at search engines you think people will use to find your website and see who
comes out top. What strategies and techniques are they using to appear higher in the
rankings than you appear? Check out the code behind their web pages and see what
techniques they may have used to get that high placement. Modify anything useful and
apply what you’ve learned to your own website.
Your website can be part of your business or all of your publishing business. Whichever, if
you use it effectively with the tips above, you can dramatically increase sales and gain
income mobility.
Case Study
One way I have been building my email list is by offering free reports through magazines.
The trick is I write the offer as editorial that makes the magazine looks good.
This study reviews an article I wrote for a series of health related magazines. I knew that
their April 2004 focus was sacred travel so I submitted the article below:
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Discover ancient healing traditions
Gain secrets of the shamans
Enchanting, mystical, healthy and easy may best describe Ecuador. Less than
four hours from the U.S. Ecuador is one of the least expensive places to enjoy a
multitude of spiritual, eco and health related travel experiences. Travelers return
home feeling changed by the experience of a spiritual quest into the Andean
highlands or Amazon rain forest.
Exploring why indigenous cultures live longer, healthier lives, leaves travelers
feeling energized, restored and enlightened in the natural rhythums of the world.
Tour guides offer hikes in rain and clouds forests, dips n volcanic springs and
canoeing in the Amazon.
Spiritual gatherings with the Quechua and Otovalo shamans reveal hidden
resources that reinvigorate the soul, cure fears and anoint with peace. Visitors
experience first hand rituals and forest herbal remedies that have been passed
down through generations.
For your next sacred journey consider Ecuador.
Then I made the free offer:
“To obtain a free 82 page email report on mystical, sacred eco and health related
travel in Ecuador visit this magazine’s information service at www.URL”
We set up our website so that each person who went to the URL in the article reached a box
like below:
Get a Free Ecuador Report
Our goal is to provide you with interesting useful and credible information on
healthy living at a local, national and global basis. To download the free 82 page
Ecuador report, please complete the information below.
Receive your link to the free report by subscribing to our FREE E-Zine. Required
fields are bolded. If you already are subscribed to our e-zines don't worry, you
won't get subscribed twice. We will NEVER share your address with
ANYONE...period.
Name:
E-Mail:
Optional Information:
Profession:
Age:
Gender:
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Whenever a person fills in this report, he gets an email giving him the URL to get
the report, plus a note telling him that if he wants to be on our ezine list, he needs
to send us a reply and confirm. This stops a lot of unwanted sign ups. It does
little good (and perhaps some harm) to bother people who have not made us
welcome.
I also get a note at my email address as below, plus the reader is automatically
subscribed to my email list.
Saturday, July 31, 2004
Name: Paul Manner
E-Mail: [email protected]
City: Atlanta Ga.
Profession: Retired Engineer
Age: 72
Gender: Male
So far, so good. I now have a name and an address plus some good data about who my
readers are. In addition this reader is on my list and will get an email message and an
advertisement from me every day. Plus he has received the 82 page report which tells this
reader a lot more about me and our services as well as Ecuador. This is a good report that I
normally sell for $49. If this reader is interested in Ecuador at all he now loves us. Yet we
are not done.
Also in one of the upcoming messages we send, Paul will see an advertisement for
something related to Ecuador, probably a tour. We have sent over 1,000 people to this
country now Average sale, $1499 to $2,999. You do the math!
But we still are not done. We immediately send this email message to the reader:
Paul,
Thanks for ordering our electronic Ecuador report which we normally costs $49,
but have sent to you free as a reader of the community health magazine.
My wife Merri and I have been living part time in Ecuador for ten years. We
originally moved there to get away from the hustle and bustle of Western life, but
soon discovered an incredible mystical and healing culture in the Amazon and
Andes. We have fallen so in love with this part of Ecuador's beauty that we are
now sharing our experiences in many ways.
One way is through this Ecuador report that shares what we have learned as we
traveled there, such as opportunity in Colonial Quito, tourism, education and
import-export as well as the mystical nature of this wonderful land.
You will learn about many opportunities and gain many contacts in the report.
We hope to meet you some time in Ecuador.
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For more information about Ecuador's ancient valleys where the residents enjoy
extreme longevity go to http://www.garyascott.com/articles/212/index.html
http://www.garyascott.com/archives/2001/12/31/316/index.html
For details about how we traveled with shamans into a secret, sacred valley deep
in the Andes go to:
http://www.garyascott.com/archives/2003/03/27/792/index.html
http://www.garyascott.com/ecuador/474/index.html
For details about our adventures in the Amazon go to:
http://www.garyascott.com/ecuador/498/index.html
http://www.garyascott.com/archives/2002/02/20/506/index.html
For pictures of the property donated for a wildlife preserve in Ecuador go to:
http://www.garyascott.com/archives/2003/01/27/749/index.html
For pictures of our sanctuary in North Carolina's Blue Ridge go to:
www.littlehorsecreek.com
For more on Land of the Sun Foundation that helps the indigenous in Ecuador and
around the world go to http://www.landofthesun.org/
Do not hesitate to get in touch with me at [email protected] if you have any
questions or comments.
Gary
This note is to start a close relationship with this reader. I know a bit about him and now he
knows more about me. My goal is to use the internet not as a cheap way to reach more
people but as a way to more easily develop credibility and an intimate relationship with my
readers.
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Lesson Twelve
Fiction & Cultural Creatives
Hushed whispers of silence fall like autumn leaves, just before six. I was waiting
for the first book signing of my novel, the 65th Octave.
Naples, Florida, Books a Million. The weather was hot. The air conditioning chugged
away so the room was cold. Had it not been for my publishing experience, I would have
been even more chilled. Book signings can be scary!
This lesson shares my experience in marketing fiction through retail book stores. This lesson
covers ideas about creating fiction to help understand thoughts on demographic shifts
(DEMOSS).
The fiction I wrote was affected by a huge demographic wave. And as this publishing event
began to unfold this novel was so shaped and so propelled by this shift it would be accurate
to say I was no longer the writer. The fiction wrote me. Please remember these words.
“As a publisher, there may be times when a book or report you publish writes you!” At
such times you may feel alone, bewildered, lost or that you are doing something that makes
no sense at all. Yet you may feel compelled to do it.
This was my case when the DEMOSS we’ll study in this lesson started pulling Merri’s and my
life apart and had a profound impact on our publishing business. We unknowingly became
part of a new subculture.
The DEMOSS was so entangled in my novel that looking at why, as well as how I wrote it
can help you as a publisher.
The Book Signing
I arrived early. Do this if you or one of your writers ever have a book signing at a book
store. Assume that no one at the store will know what is going on, not your publisher, not
your publicity agent and certainly not the staff at the store.
Fortunately I had visited the manager just a few days earlier so I had names and knew that
my books were packed away somewhere in the store. The manager was not on the
premises (she did arrive later) and no one knew a thing. Yet I wanted to get ready.
I dropped the manager’s name a few times, assured them that my books were there, and
that I was having a book signing (see the sign on your window-guys—that’s me). I asked
where they kept their tables and Merri and I set one up ourselves. Acting like we knew
what was happening helped us manage to get everything assembled in time so I could grab
a Café Latte before the crowd arrived. (I apologize to any of that staff who still works at
Books A Million in Naples-in the end you were great and last time I visited my books were
still on your shelves-thanks).
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And a crowd did arrive. I knew they would. I knew because I was a publisher (a
salesman really). I knew because I had a list of readers in the Naples zip. I knew because I
had been selling these readers books, reports and seminars for years. I knew because I had
offered these readers a FREE workshop if they visited with me at Books A Million, 6 to 8 PM
on a Friday night. I knew because I had sent a thousand of these letters or more. Hey I was
prepared! We sold nearly 100 books. Ka-Ching, about $2,000 in the store’s cash register.
The manager of the store was impressed.
Success! But I’ll explain in a moment why I never made a penny from this. In fact I lost
money for the effort.
Sometimes an author never sells a book at a signing. Yet during the launch of my novel I
did a dozen and was never skunked. In one book store we only had five people show up at
one small store, but that was the worst because it was on a week day afternoon. Watch out
for the blurbs during weekdays! Bad time, bad place.
Yet there were memorables. We packed the house in Naples and did even better in
downtown Portland (Barnes & Noble), Vancouver B.C. (Chapters) and Orlando (Borders).
What is important about these signings is the way we got the readers to the signing, how
each success lost money and how every penny was worth it and how I also recouped the
loss.
To begin we need to understand how this novel came about and why. What in the heck was
a guy, who had made millions researching, writing and publishing non-fiction reports about
international investing doing writing a rather soppy novel with romantic and spiritual
overtones?
We had the perfect life. We owned a huge seven bedroom house in Olde Naples, one of
the most modern, clean, safe perfect cities in the world. Someone once described Naples as
“Mop & Glow with palm trees”. They were not far off.
We also had our comfortable mountain cabin in North Carolina that sat deep in the forest on
a rushing creek. This was one of the most traditional areas to get away and recharge.
Plus to really get away we had our condo on a crescent beach in the Dominican Republic,
where everything was different and worked outside the Western box of normalcy. We could
be really creative on that beach.
We traveled globally, crossing the Atlantic every 3 weeks to our house in London. Other
cities were included, the Vienna, Geneva, Brussels, Prague, Copenhagen, two or three
Caribbean stops, all in the name of business, tax deductible trips. We had a Rolls Royce and
a Bentley.
Everything was paid for and profitable. No mortgage, no losses, no debt. Our children were
happy, healthy and all but one had finished their higher education. (Now 49.8% of youdemographically speaking-should be really impressed-but I just offended another 26%-the
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score is not looking good-49.8% pleased 51.2% anxious-More about DEMOSS in a
moment).
We had everything we had imagined and more…until it started…an itch to write a novel.
I thought it began inside me, but now see that it really was an outside force moving both
Merri and me along (with 49,999.998 others). We were like light bulbs thinking the
light was ours.
This was first noted at the Victoria, Canada airport. We had taken nearly a month off for a
deep purification-meditation session with a Kayakalpa master at his remote home on Salt
Springs Island. This should have been clue enough…but we did not know what we were
looking for. While there, this vague itch began to focus itself. There was no big picture (this
would take about a decade to resolve), just one tiny first step. I realized we needed to sell
our house in Naples and move on.
There was one little problem. We had nowhere to go. Should we go live in a tent (don’t
laugh-this is exactly what we ended up doing).
This all had to do with demographics that are explained in the book, The Cultural Creatives,
by Paul H. Ray Ph.D. and Sherry Ruth Anderson Ph.D. Dr. Ray ran a company called
American LIVES Inc. for 13 years. During that time he accumulated over 100,000
responses to questionnaires and hundreds of focus groups. The demographic information
from those responses suggests that a new subculture had been emerging in America since
the 60s. This group now represents 26% of the adult population (50 million people) and
divides the nation into three demographic subgroups, the Moderns (49.8% of the
population), the Traditionals (23.2%) and the Cultural Creatives (CC), 26%).
Some interesting points made in the book are:
The Moderns rule. They are the establishment.
The Traditionals are dying off.
The Cultural Creatives are creating a new culture in America.
Each of the three subcultures has a pretty fair disdain for the thinking of the others.
Back to my novel and the Victoria Airport. Merri and I both arrived in Victoria with the
same thinking, at the same time and totally agreed to something that seemed
totally outlandish and illogical.
The book, The Cultural Creatives, explained what happened: “They (CCs) would agree
with educator Jean Houston, one of the early Cultural Creatives that ‘the world is
too complex for linear analytic thinking now. To be smart in the global village
means thinking with your stomach, thinking rhythmically, thinking organically,
thinking in terms of yourself as an interwoven piece of nature”.
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Back to the airport. Much to my surprise, instead of my bringing up the subject that
we should sell our house and leave Naples, Merri suggested it as we were waiting
for our flight! Over the days, weeks and months that followed, we created a plan.
Life was now different now evidenced in part by the For Sale sign at the front of
the house.
In retrospect these changes had been gradually evolving and the book describes what is
important to each subculture and explains what happened to us.
Moderns find the following things important:
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Making or having a lot of money.
Climbing the ladder of success with measurable goals.
Looking good or being stylish.
When the going gets tough the tough go shopping.
Having lots of choices.
Being on top of the latest innovations, trends and styles.
Supporting economic and technological progress at a national level.
Rejecting the values of native peoples and rural people, Traditionals, New Agers and
religious mystics.
Moderns also have the following assumptions:
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It is flaky to be concerned about your inner or spiritual life.
You have the right to be entertained by the media.
Your body is pretty much like a machine.
Most organizations lend themselves to machine analogies.
Either big business or big government knows best.
Bigger is better.
Time is money.
What gets measured gets done.
Setting goals is very important.
Analyzing things into their parts is the best way to solve problems.
Science and engineering are the models for truth.
Efficiency and speed are top priorities.
The mainstream media’s awe for the rich is correct.
It makes sense to compartmentalize your life into separate spheres, work, family,
making love, education, politics, religion.
Traditionals find the following important:
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Patriarchs should again dominate family life.
Feminism is a swear word.
Men need to keep their traditional roles and women theirs.
Family, church and community are where you belong.
The conservative version of their own particular religion must be upheld.
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Customary and familiar ways of life should be maintained.
It is important to regulate sex-pornography, teen sex, extramarital sex and abortion.
Men should be proud to serve their country in the military.
All the guidance you need in life can be found in the Bible.
Country and small town life is more virtuous than big city or suburban life.
Our country needs to do more to support virtuous behavior.
Preserving civil liberties is less important than restricting moral behavior.
Freedom to carry arms is essential.
Foreigners are not welcome.
So as I began thinking more as a Cultural Creative, I touched some raw traditional and
modern nerves. Meditation came from a foreign place and foreign ideas are not welcome by
traditionals. Moderns do not like to mix ideas about meditation and money. CCs on the
other hand find the following important:
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Nature and its destruction.
Problems with the whole planet such as global warming, destruction of the rain forests,
overpopulation, lack of ecological sustainability and exploitation of the poor.
They would pay more taxes if the money would be used to clean the environment.
Developing and maintaining relationships.
Helping others and bringing out other’s unique gifts.
Volunteering for good causes.
Psychological and spiritual development.
See spirituality or religion as important but concerned about Religious right.
Equality of women.
Violence and abuse of women and children.
Politics should spend more on education, neighborhoods and sustainable future.
Concerns about the left and right of politics as well as the mushy middle.
Optimism for the future and distrust media’s negativity.
Creating new and better ways of life.
Concerned about big business’s focus on profit over environment, downsizing and human
exploitation.
Having finances under control
Dislikes overspending, conspicuous consumption and “making it”.
Likes exotic and foreign people, places and other ways of life.
So we sold our Dominican condo, our North Carolina cabin, our house/offices in
London and our house in Naples and changed our entire way of life. Our business
changed as well. We wanted to do less office and telephone work so we could
focus on more research and writing. We liked this best and we were following the
Golden Rule of Simplicity I so often promote, “Do what you love”.
We decided to accomplish this change by expanding our market through strategic ventures.
We had good contacts in the publishing field so we would give up part of our profit and let
others publish for us.
Since many of the ideas I wanted to get across were foreign to what I had been writing and
seemed alien to my existing readers I started writing the 65th Octave, as a spiritual
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economic thriller. I wanted to reach a larger audience that had an interest in my now
expanded areas of focus. I had expanded from international investing to ethical investing,
having fun in business and alternative health. The novel was definitely about spirituality
and changes in mentality. The book was aimed at the CCs and reflected what I was feeling.
I just did not know this.
Our goal was to write this book and have someone else publish it. This worked but barely.
We began with the major publishers and did not have success, so eventually settled for a
subsidized publisher which meant that we had to pay for part of the book promotion.
We set up PR and focused on doing FREE radio interviews and book signings across the
country. We were going to get even richer. Financial success was modest.
Fiction is one of the harder mediums to sell and even harder to profit.
I wrote the book. I found a publisher who printed it. He gave it to a distributor and we did
our book signings and had lots of radio interviews and we sold about a thousand books.
Let’s do the math. The book sold for $19.95. My royalty (had I been paid by the publisher)
would have been about $1 a book. You can only do a little to sell a lot with those numbers
if the book is not creating future sales.
Then I had some good luck. The publisher went out of business and I never received a
penny of the royalties I was owed. This was good because I got the book back and could
publish it myself (in other words make the entire $19.95).
I readjusted my focus and unintentionally began to sell the book to CCs. Then my business
plan began to work. The math changed a lot. I sold several thousand books myself through
the internet. I kept the whole $19.95. Plus I was able to have the email address of each
buyer.
See the difference? Before I made $1 per book and did not know who my buyers were. As
the publisher, I made $19.95 and could keep contact with the buyers.
And because of this, these readers started to buy other courses and come to our seminars.
The important point is that by following our hearts, our wants, needs and desires, though
we did not know where we were going at first, we got there anyhow. Business began to get
better and better as we learned where our focus belonged.
This novel helped us shift from a readership of mainly moderns and traditionals to CCs as
well. In conclusion the morals in this lesson are:
There are three subcultures in the Western world. Learn them. Know them. Know which you
are and know which you are marketing to.
The Golden Rule of Publishing works!
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Life and markets change. Give yourself a break and go with the flow. This is a CC thing but
it will make your publishing more enjoyable if you do. Life will be more fun.
Case Study-Marketing to CCs
This case study examines a marketing piece I wrote for a seminar aimed at CCS. Look at
the motives I present and then reexamine what is important to CCs.
The Benefits of Trading a Rolls Royce for a Beat Up 87 Ford
Recently two friends stopped by to visit Merri and me at the farm. Their reaction
to my truck leaves a financial message for us all.
These friends knew us first when we lived in Florida and I drove a Rolls. So they
really laughed when I arrived to pick them up at the local hardware store in my
Ford pickup. Let me tell you about this Ford.
Brown Betty I call her. 1987-brown-rusting, scratched-143,000 miles-long bedfour wheel drive-eight speed stick on the floor-big engine-huge six ply snow tires.
I bought her for $2,400..
This truck is tough! When Merri, me and Ma (our pumpkin patch hound) have a
heavy job from carrying railroad ties (we are building a bridge on the land) to
clean up the environment, from taking rusted barbed wire we pulled out of the
creek to hauling years of garbage left on the land to the dump, the truck gets the
job done. We don't worry about the innumerable dents scratches and nicks we
put on that truck for a minute.
This is the perfect vehicle for the farm. Rain, mud, frozen roads or snow, this
truck goes. With chains she runs like a Sherman tank anywhere and everywhere!
Our inner roads are narrow-lined with scratchy shrubs. We're always carrying
some sticky, heavy load. Who cares?
Am I worried about breaking down? Not a chance. Our friend Billy lives up the
road. He's a master mechanic in the old style (why use a muffler when a pop can
will do?) He'll keep it running forever at a low cost. Plus we help keep the people
up here employed.
What does having this beat up truck instead of a Rolls have to do with wealth?
Well it costs a lot less to run and insure it. But this is not the point.
We also fit in better here in the mountains which has helped us make friends and
contacts that have been enormously helpful. This is not the point either.
The point is this truck is what I really want and need. The Rolls was what others
convinced me I needed.
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We looked at the importance of being ourselves in our last message. Knowing
ourselves and living lives the way we truly want (instead of as we are expected)
gives us enormous freedom.
When we are free, we gravitate towards what we love and success becomes
easier. This is the path to true wealth.
I may look poorer when I pull up in my Ford, but I am happier (actually I am
wealthier). When you live to be fulfilled instead of impressing others, finances
make miraculous turn-arounds. Try it and see!
While on the subject of freedom I would like to share two thoughts about my
upcoming Winter Think Tank here at the farm on January 26 to 29. We have
already set up a private forum for the delegates so they are becoming prepared
and learning and getting to know the other delegates even before we meet.
Next week I will begin the private forum for this $2,000 course.
The purpose of the course is to help those who attend have more freedom. Our
mission is to help you have profits and enjoyment in the process itself. Merri's
and my life have been truly thrilling because of our publishing business. Our
knowing how to sell valuable information to others has allowed us to live in Hong
Kong, London, as well as Florida, the NC mountains and the Dominican Republic
and travel all over the world. Now we live exactly where we desire on our farm in
North Carolina and plantation in Ecuador and really have everything in life we
desire. Not only has this made us millions but has brought us friendships from all
over the world. This has given us so much freedom we can choose to drive a beat
up Ford if we desire!
We share in the course everything we have learned about operating a small
business in publishing so you can have the same freedom, financial stability and
influence.
The course will cover several areas including how to use publishing to promote
and expand other businesses. For example one real estate broker who attended
our first course learned how to publish a welcome book for new residents coming
into her area. She did not start a publishing business to sell information, but
learned how to publish to enhance her real estate business. Many who attend
want to use publications and or seminars to make an existing business better. We
also cover how to start up a new business for those who want to write their own
stuff and publish it and those who want to publish material of others. For example
I publish what I write myself, but also sell books written by others when it fits
into my focus. In the course you will learn how to do both.
The syllabus includes how to define and plan the business, set up the structure,
create the product, find the customer, create the sales story, choose marketing
channels and formats and how to use the golden rule of simplicity for market
research and to reach markets.
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Also one session will be aimed at looking at each delegate's idea (if they have
one) so the course becomes very personal in this way.
Three benefits are gained from the course. First the information, second the
contacts with many like minded souls and finally the private internet forum that
allows you to maintain and improve (the knowledge and contacts) after the
course in a highly personalized way.
The course begins Friday Feb. 2 at 9am and ends Sunday at 5pm.
Until next message, good global business and investing.
Sincerely,
Gary Scott
See how this piece fit so many of the parameters of CC interests. This marketing
piece worked because it was sent to CCs.
Now look at this next CC marketing piece I also used.
Seeing Ahead by Looking Back!
Dear International Friend,
I made a horrible mistake. Almost! The supposed error? Letting my mind
wander four decades back to an hour I spent with a girl. You can learn from
this near disaster as I did, the most powerful sources of wealth, health and
asset protection, security and fulfillment of this era.
The girl was pretty and blond. Terry was her name. My imagination spanned
40 years and saw her like she was then. We were 11 or 12 and had known
each other since we started Rockwood grade school. Just buddies, our nonromantic friendship lasted 12 years, from first grade till high school's end.
Then she went off to Pepperdine College in California. I started traveling the
world. Never saw her again. I hope her life has gone well. But until that
reflection I'd never thought much of Terry in 40 years.
What could have been the tragic error was letting that memory touch my
heart. Two kids, walking on a crisp, autumnal afternoon. We walked down a
sun filled, pine needle covered, dirt path. Huge, fat, green Douglas firs lined
the road. Traffic was no problem, not many cars. Young kids could walk safely
miles from home. Crossing Stark Street we turned left, hiking three blocks to
182nd. There we passed an old clapboard candy store. I heard the wooden
sidewalk of that store slap beneath my feet, felt the soggy planks sag and
smelled astringent pitch from the fir trees. Then we turned right, up 182nd
for about a mile.
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There was Terry's house. I carried on, walking through a big field, waist high
grass turned straw brown by an early frost. There were dozens of paths made
by who knows what. Animals perhaps or countless generations of other kids
walking home from school. I chose one following it to another wood of tall,
rough-barked fir. Crossing one more field, I climbed a rock wall, struggled
through a barbed wire fence (my Mom hated that fence ripping my jeans). I
was home! Sweet simplicity, that dream. Two kids holding hands, walking on
a dirt trail under a crisp, but blue, sunny sky. Pure innocence.
My tragic error was coming back. I returned to Rockwood, Oregon with my
kids to show them this part of their roots. Following the route, Terry and I
had walked, the old school and those huge gentle trees were gone. So too the
candy store, grange hall, old wooden buildings and their home spun honesty
and charm. Instead we found six lanes of fast, frantic traffic and road rage.
McDonalds, KFC, strip shopping centers. The car radio blared warnings of
local gangs and drive-by-shootings. Beauty, innocence, sweet simplicity,
replaced by drive ins and drive bys. I started to cry. Gangs and drive-by
shootings replacing a tender walk in the sun. Good bye memories, good bye.
How can our kids walk in places like this?
How can any of us possibly keep pace in this world that's moving so fast?
Something inside snapped. "There has to be an answer for honest, hard
working folks to enjoy the wonderful opportunities of today and regain what
we've lost over the past forty years", I swore to myself.
That thought helped start a quest that can now help bring you greater
prosperity, security and happiness. That thought eventually led Merri and me
to Merrily Farms on Little Horse Creek. Now we can invite you to join us here
at Little Horse Creek to share one of two courses.
The first course on how to invest in these difficult fast paced times will be
conducted July 27 thru 29 and Teddy Christiansen my banker from Jyskebank
and Steve Rosberg from Argentina, my South American banker will help me
conduct this course.
This course will help you learn how to keep pace, get ahead, enjoy our
modern society but, stop the world from moving too fast.
How can we keep up, without having such a fast paced life we turn into
machines? Where do we find time for God, family, charity, and our friends?
How can we rediscover those sun filled, pine needle covered, dirt paths we
want to walk?
This question led me to begin reviewing the thousands of economic
experiences I have shared with readers over the past thirty years. Looking for
answers I started digging, asking and observing as I traveled and talked to
investors and investment managers all over the world.
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I found many answers. All suggested that this puzzle was not one of
knowledge or information. The difference between success and failure was a
matter of spirit. The keys to great sustained wealth cannot be picked up from
our outside world of economics, business and finance. The ultimate answers
of everlasting abundance lay within.
This surprised me at first. Investing is not normally considered a spiritual
event. Yet everything I learned from continued questioning suggested that
success and failure are not determined by external events. This fact was
summed up when I read a quote from Sir Arthur Keith, "The course of human
history is not determined by what happens in the skies, but by what takes
place in our hearts". The keys to success are something each of us holds
inside.
But I was not satisfied with this fact and started asking economic questions of
spiritual leaders, Christian ministers, British missionaries from Africa,
Shamans from Ecuador, Hindu Pundits from India, a Sufi master from
Baghdad, a Buddhist lama from Brazil. I wanted to develop an understanding
about the kinds of spirit which might control investing success.
But religious leaders did not have the answers either. Where I found the clues
was between the lines. After so many different types of investment strategies,
philosophies and religions; I began to see a connection between all of them.
These connections were areas of agreement that seemed to operate below
the obvious. It occurred to me that these areas were the truths which affect
all things, including our spirits.
In this way I was able to start threading pieces from many sources into a
logic which modern man can use in his day-to-day business and investment
activity.
Finally all this research came together as I was hiking with one of South
America's best known indigenous healers. We were high in the Andes, had
hiked to nearly 14,000 feet and then dropped down to the headwaters of the
Amazon. As he was talking about a seemingly totally unrelated subject, the
years of study, questioning and thinking suddenly came together.
I realized there are seven specific steps we as investors and businessmen can
take to raise our spirits for better investing. These steps can bring us
everlasting wealth.
In my upcoming courses I humbly try to blend the hard facts of business and
investing with some of the world's greatest wisdom so we can learn how to
avoid the fate of most investors who are doomed by never-ending fluctuations
of fear and greed, two false masters rising from the same source. These
illusions are the result of low spirits and always bring failure.
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This course explains the internal dilemma most investors face and the kind of
spirit we need to overwhelm the negative aspects which bombard us everyday
and can rob us of our wealth.
The course shows us how to invest wisely but also examines why materialistic
goals are doomed to fail as the engine that drives us to success. All material
things, like alcohol, drugs and tobacco lose their potency with use. The laws
of diminishing returns work against us when we go just for the money. As the
rewards diminish, so too does our spirits. The seven specific steps in this
course can help us raise our investing spirits and can lead us to everlasting
wealth.
Whatever you do, whether you are a small investor or have huge institutional
investments to manage, whether an employee, business leader or
professional looking to direct your clientele more accurately, the ideas in this
course can help you.
Good spirits are one of the most important ingredients for financial success.
These spirits reside within you and are connected to every market in the
world. Yet have you ever had a financial advisor ask about your spirit? This is
because western society has focused so tightly on material wealth we have
lost our view of the spirit which is behind every action and thing. This is a
huge loss since these spirits really are what drive the world. They drive the
world, the world's economy and the world's money. Thus I am especially
delighted to share my experience of these spirits at the course. They can help
you can get in touch with your spirits and help you became a truly inspired
investor. All wealth is within.
In case you cannot join us I share the notes I'll use to cover this part of each
of my two upcoming courses. Of course Teddy Christiansen of Jyske Bank
Denmark and Steve Rosberg of Highoak Finance (both international bankers)
will help us with how to use the nuts and bolts of the Borrow Low Deposit
High tactic.
Enjoy the notes and until next message, good global investing!
INSPIRED INVESTING
7 Steps to Everlasting Wealth
Inspired investors break free of the illusions about money, profit and wealth
that our material society has caused to blind most of the world.
There is a natural, easy, stress less way to make and easily use money.
Inspired investors learn to use their total mind-body to gain greater
understanding of the forces which drive the world. With this knowledge,
investors can easily and naturally build wealth in rational, profitable ways that
eliminate the fear, greed and stress from investing.
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Most western investors use only their minds. They try to collect as much
economic data as they can and make investments based on the information.
There is too much information! There is too much information now that comes
too fast. Few minds are quick enough to succeed. None can know it all. Like
riding a bicycle, the process has to come naturally and automatically.
Everything becomes jerky and filled with stress if each action has to be
thought about.
Let's look at seven fundamental laws of investing and the steps to take.
The Seven Fundamental Laws
Knowing these laws gives us the seven steps we can take to unlock our mindbody connection. Doing so calls on a vast pool of inner intelligence that leads
easily and stresslessly to better investments and more comfort with our
wealth.
#1: All Investments are Controlled by just a Few Natural Laws.
Step to take: Look for fundamental economic laws which serve society rather
than just for hot investments.
"The ideals which have lighted my way to face life cheerfully have
been Kindness, Beauty and Truth. The trite subjects of human
effort-outward possessions, outward success, luxury have always
seem to me contemptible."
Albert Einstein
Learning about a hot investment is like buying fish. Learning a law which
affects society for the better is like learning how to fish. Most investors always
look for tips or hot stocks they can buy. Few ever look beneath what they are
told. Sometimes investing this way succeeds. More often it fails. Such success
is always filled with stress. This is just another form of gambling.
Investors should look for universal laws and fundamentals that are important
to the well being of all people. Such laws once understood lead to endless
good investments.
We learn to discriminate. We learn to identify the natural laws which get to
the root of all human and economic behavior and recognize their difference
from statistics. We review the dangers of economic myths which were based
on such strong past fundamentals they are considered truth by the public, but
are no longer supported by real fundamentals. We consider chance versus
change, supply versus demand, action versus reaction, debt versus savings
and production versus consumption
.
#2: All Natural Laws of Economics are Dynamic.
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Step to take: Look beneath the balance sheet.
"What have you in your houses, And what is it you guard behind
fastened doors? Have you peace, the quiet urge that reveals your
power? Have you remembrance, the glimmering arches that span
the summits of your mind? Have you beauty,that leads the heart
from things fashioned of wood and stone to the holy mountain?
"Tell me are these things in your houses? Or have you only
comfort, and the lust for comfort, that stealthy thing that enters
the house as a guest, and then becomes the host and then a
master?
"Ay and it becomes a tamer and with hook and scourge makes
puppets of your larger desires. Though its hands are silken, its
heart is of iron. It lulls you to sleep only to stand by your bed and
jeer at the dignity of the flesh. Verily the lust for comfort murders
the passion of the soul and then walks grinning in the funeral."
Kahil Gibran
In Western society, we are fooled by triple illusions of material wealth. These
illusions are net worth, balance sheets and money. These are measures that
never show true wealth and can change quickly.
Such undependable measures of wealth lead to never-ending restlessness.
They are like looking at a picture of a picture of a picture and treating this
picture as if it were real.
We look at how all investments are ideas and how dynamic nature is so too
must our portfolios be.
#3: All Wealth is Within.
Step to take: Listen to your inner intelligence.
Your inner intelligence unlocks the other half of true wealth. The great
investors of all times have used intellect and intuition. Most investors just try
to think their way to success.
"The course of human history is determined not by what happens in
the skies but by what takes place in our hearts."
Sir Arthur Keith
In this chapter we examine the connection between our inner intelligence and
the universal investment laws of nature. We look at how to connect the mindbody to these laws through the seven arts of life and investing.
#4: All Economic Laws are Ruled by Cause and Effect.
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Step to take: Learn to give.
"It is truly one of the most beautiful compensations of life that no
man can sincerely try to help another without helping himself."
Ralph Waldo Emerson
Giving unlocks the dynamic forces which create a natural wealth
consciousness and eliminates poverty thought. Giving opens the heart which
is the first step to aligning the seven information processing centers of wealth
contained within our bodies.
We examine the nature of circulation and how money fits into this role. We
look at the six centers (seven including the mind) and how our body
processes information. We then learn how giving taps these centers.
#5: The World's Economy has Infinite Abundance.
Step to take: See the infinite possibilities.
"Water is everywhere around you but you see only barriers that
keep you from the water."
Rumi, 14th century poet
One of the biggest mistakes investors make is rushing because they think
they will miss a good deal. Another is when investors try to cash in on every
opportunity. Both these errors come from a poverty consciousness.
We examine why there are always new opportunities every day and how and
why an investor should be discriminating and patient. We review a multi-step
investment elimination process which includes listening to intuition,
recognizing our unique capabilities and needs, doing what feels right and then
standing back from the decision and listening to our feelings of love.
#6: All Economic Laws are Simply Energy and Desire.
Step to take: Give attention to intention.
"Put your heart, mind, intellect and soul even to your smallest acts.
This is the secret of success." Swami Sivanada
Most investors never clarify why they want to be rich. They invest for money
like Pavlovian dogs. Investors who have a clear intention dramatically
improve their chances for profit.
We review the importance of intention and focus on the way to use intention
correctly to produce results. We look at setting high short term goals but
remain detached, putting attention on the here and now, creating a universal
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passion for goals to be accomplished in the most evolutionary way and why
we should leave the final details to unseen forces. We learn the financial
importance of having a purpose beyond our goals.
#7: The Only Certainty is Change.
Step to take: Embrace change.
"Do everything with a mind that lets go.” Achaan Chah
Investors continually try to stop the change. We must easily embrace change
instead. We lose our stress when we relax into the ever changing cycles of
life.
All things in the universe are ruled by the same cycles-expansion, extension
and contraction. Yet investors tend to invest in companies whose balance
sheets look best when? At the end of a period of extension.
We look at how economics is the analysis of motion. Investing is the process
of financing society's motion. Fear causes most investors to try to stop motion
instead of financing it. We examine how and why successful investors look for
ideas caused by change to turn into money.
We need to change our perception about the inevitable rise and fall of nature.
When change causes an increase in our balance sheets, our typical Western
reaction is to view this increase as good. We also typically view a reduction in
our balance sheet as bad. This continual shift in view is disturbing and
unnecessary. The reality is that change does not cause us to lose anything
except the figments of imagination our minds had accepted.
We view how the rise and fall of wealth in mathematical terms are just signals
of change, nothing more and nothing less. Such cycles are signals of
opportunity.
Summary
Inspired Investing is being bold. It's breaking loose from the materialistic
social view that has created so much crime, corruption, greed, fear and
stress. We are more than our minds. We should use our full potential in the
process of making and using wealth. Wealth, like electricity, is nothing unless
it is used and in circulation. Once we realize and understand the natural laws
of economics and take the steps to unleash the power of these laws, we easily
make and achieve everlasting wealth.
"A knowledge of the path cannot be substituted for putting one foot
in front of the other."
M. C. Richards”
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Wow, what a long marketing piece! I thought it was really good. So did others. In fact one
copywriter I know wrote and said it was the best he had ever seen. But keep in mind this
was written by me (a cultural creative) for cultural creatives.
I consider knowledge of the three basic types: moderns, traditionals and cultural creatives
to be of the utmost importance in writing, marketing and publishing.
Assignment
Review your publication. Answer the following questions.
Which subculture does your publication appeal to?
#1:
#2:
#3:
#4:
#5:
Modern
Traditional
Cultural Creative
Two or three of the subcultures
All three subcultures.
Reexamine your buyer’s physical location. Does the best way to reach this location and
buyer change now that you understand these three sub cultures?
Would you advertise in different magazines or publications for any one or all three
subcultures? Which? What Kind of Ad? Cost?
Would use direct mail differently now that you understand these three sub cultures? What
should be mailed? What list or lists? Cost?
Would you use a Website or email differently now that you understand these three sub
cultures? How would it be different?
Are there any other changes you would make to your publication or sales plan now that you
understand these three sub cultures?
List these changes below.
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Lesson Thirteen
Gaining Extra Benefits from Writing and Publishing
Subtle hints of fragrant spice mingle sweetly in the night...riding warm and moist
on a soft gentle air.
Puerto Plata Airport, Dominican Republic. A cacophony of confusion struggled in every
corner of the building. But everyone tried to help. "Todos son posibles" was the reply to
every question. "Everything is possible." We knew we are in the tropics again!
We have traveled to so many places and most of the tours have been magical ones. This is
one of the great extras in publishing.
This trip to the Dominican Republic typified some of the fringe benefits of publishing. First,
we eased through customs because I always place one of my books with my picture on the
cover in each bag.
I have seen the meanest customs agents shut up, smile and push me on through the second
they see my picture on the book cover. No one likes to tangle with a writer. Our society is
indoctrinated by printed words from the minute we are born. Ours is a visual society.
Congress writes (not speaks) law. There is power in words. The pen IS mightier than the
sword!
Our trip to the Dominican Republic gives an example of other publishing benefits. When we
decided to visit this country, we called around and let it be known that we were coming
down to research a book and to check out the idea of putting on conferences there.
Because of this, the American Consul was waiting to help me pass quickly and easily into
the country and give us a ride to our hotel. He and his charming wife shared all kinds of
secrets about the place as we rode through the evening air. It turned out that he was from
Portland, Oregon, my home town. We became friends.
At the hotel, we were given a VIP suite, a fruit basket and wine compliments of the
manager. Needless to say the suite we enjoyed during our stay was complimentary.
During that trip, people of all kinds visited us. Real estate brokers took us to view
properties. One flew us in his plane to get an overview of the coast. We were wined and
dined, met many wonderful people, all because we are writers/publishers.
What a contrast to the poor tourist, who pays top price for a package tour. We've found the
best way worldwide to meet the nicest, most influential and most interesting people in a
new country is through business. Publishing is one of the best such businesses to be in.
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Fringe benefits as a writer and publisher include:
•
•
•
•
•
Benefit
Benefit
Benefit
Benefit
Benefit
#1:
#2:
#3:
#4:
#5:
Connections.
Prestige.
Complimentary offerings.
Tax savings.
Legal protection.
Connections
Merri and I have enjoyed connections worldwide. We have been invited to countries and
enjoyed meeting presidents, premiers, prime ministers and members of parliament. Most
people worldwide are open to and invite publishers and writers because they are
looking for free publicity themselves. They all want their plan, their country, their ideas to
be presented favorably, so therefore, they want YOU to have a good time.
For example my novel, the 65th Octave, was set partly in the Isle of Man, an emerald of a
place in the middle of the Irish Sea. The Prime Minister agreed to not only endorse, but also
wrote the forward to this book.
Connections are fun! Good for business too. It also is very helpful to know people who
make decisions. I remember one day when we were flying to New York, Merri was glancing
through TIME magazine. She commented that the cover story was on a man she had
known 12 years before while doing a story on that country. You get a different insight when
you have been in the palaces and presidential mansions and homes of the rich and famous.
If you want to visit a place, write a good letter to the head official's office. It helps, of
course, if this is a small or emerging country...a bit harder to achieve status with a major
western country, though you never know when you will luck out. Have a nice letterhead,
state the nature of your publishing venture and what your mission will be. Ask for
assistance on your project. You will be bombarded back with brochures, pamphlets, books
and the likes and the NAMES of committee heads. Follow up with these names.
Follow up these letters with a personal phone call or email.
If you would like to know someone, simply write their office and ask for an
interview. If you want information (whether it be from an attorney, accountant or similar
professional), ask for an interview. They normally will not charge, but would be happy if
you give them a mention in your publication. Making connections worldwide is quite simple
if you follow these steps:
1. Present yourself in a professional manner.
2. Present your project clearly. It is essential that you have a clear plan for your project
so that you can make it clear to others.
3. Follow up your letter with phone calls and emails.
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4. Be professional when presenting yourself on the phone.
5. Ask for the help you need. Do not ask for anything free.
When interviewing, use the tools you need to be accurate. If you cannot write things fast
and accurately, use a tape recorder. DO NOT use a tape recorder without permission first.
Using a recorder will stop a lot of spontaneity, as the person you are interviewing will be
more careful about what they say.
Prestige
A great deal of America's wealth has been built from publishing. To be a publisher or a
writer is prestigious. It makes great conversation and is quite an entree into society.
Once you have gained expertise in a field, the prestige is there. One of the first people
Merri ever edited over 35 years ago was a veterinarian from Georgia. He was one of the
first Americans to study acupuncture in China and wanted to write a book about
acupuncture on animals. Merri edited the book and learned all about acupuncture (she still
uses his teachings all these decades later).
He became known all over America. Newspapers wrote stories about him. He was invited
by other veterinarians to lecture to them. He had private jets sent to pick him up for special
treatment for special animals. He was interviewed everywhere he went. Duke
University at that time was searching for key acupuncture points that were missing in
certain animals. He was invited to help them on their research projects.
His whole life changed! Overnight, he changed from a small town southern veterinarian to a
celebrity...well respected, needed, well read and certainly well traveled!
Another client of Merri's was a housewife from the deep South. She had a simple idea for a
book. She had searched everywhere for specific needlework patterns. There were none.
So, she had Merri help her create this book. It was nothing really than a series of patterns
with a bit of explanation. It sold thousands of copies in a town of only 18,000! A local
department store was part of a larger chain and distributed the book through all the stores
throughout the South. The stores had autograph parties for her, she made loads of money,
met loads of interesting people who had common interests and enjoyed the PRESTIGE of
publishing. And Merri of course reaped a lot of money, satisfaction and prestige herself…all
opening more and more doors for writing and publishing.
Free Benefits
Years ago when Baby Doc was trying to give Haiti a good image, Merri was invited to join
with a group of other professionals to visit the country. She was flown free on Eastern
Airlines, given a lovely room overlooking the sea and invited to the Presidential (President
for Life) Palace. She, being the only woman in the group, was given her own private
bodyguard who even slept right outside on her doorstep!
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For a whole week, she toured the country... by helicopter, on the back of jitneys, in
limousines. She went to Dr. Schweitzer's clinic, met the Mellons who created the clinic and
lived there for their entire lives and met all the lepers and the poor as well as was
entertained royally in Cap Haitian. It was a fun time for her and she was able to really get
to know the country...all of this without expense.
When the group was ready to leave, there was a problem. One of the group, an entertainer,
had used his professional name to enter the country. Although Merri did not know this
person at all, she was in the group, and the entire group was arrested. Passports were
taken. Tickets were cancelled. It was a serious offense to use a false name in Haiti. The
entertainer had simply used his "stage" name while performing for the president, rather
than be embarrassed by his rather ordinary "real" name. Explanations were given to the
authorities. The story was told over and over. But no one cared. The law and the rules
were clear.
One of the group of men suggested to Merri that she might get somewhere by crying.
Instead, being the only publisher there, she simply pulled out one of the magazines she
published and said, "I've had a very lovely time in this lovely country. I intend to go
back and write some beautiful stories and tell everyone in America all about these great
people and this interesting country. But if there is some sort of problem here with
Immigration, I suppose I will have to tell that also. I suppose I will have to explain to
the American people how they can be mistreated in Haiti."
In less than five minutes, the group was escorted to the plane. Passports reappeared. The
group thankfully boarded!
Even though Merri's magazines were strictly regional, the Haitian officials were unable to
risk negative exposure. They didn't care whether the exposure was regional or another
TIME Magazine!
Over the years, Haiti as well as Dr. and Mrs. Mellon and their life and work with the lepers
had a huge influence on her and she helped them through the magical world of writing and
publishing for years. She has been influenced all these decades by the time spent with the
gracious, hard working Mellons and has used them as a pattern for our work in Ecuador.
Another great time was had in the Leeward Islands. Merri had an interest in this small
group of Caribbean Islands but had not visited them. Off went a polite request to the
government with a sample copy of some things that she had published. What came back
were tickets to St. Kitts, an invitation to visit, meet with the prime minister, etc. These
islands were greatly enjoyed by her. Hurricane David hit while she was there, she came
home with the first photos of the storm and sold them to the syndicates of United Press and
Associated Press.
These visits to the Caribbean sparked desires in her for adventure, pleasure, knowledge and
the desire to help others. She enjoyed for years exploration of the islands as well as
providing help to them through exposure to publishing.
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Keep in mind that it is always important to give back to the country or the place
that gives. We have greatly enjoyed our visits, free lodging, free meals, connections and
prestige; we always give back. We do our best to present and place in a good light these
countries and places and to give them a chance for our readers.
Merri has promoted place after place, country after country, situation after situation in a
enthusiastic, but realistic light. It is important when free benefits are given to return them
in a good published piece. Assuming you can truthfully do so.
In her years of publishing magazines and writing, Merri has edited over 1000 writers and
sent them all over the world on free expeditions. This worked over and over for her all
because the connections were sincere, truthful and beneficial to both sides.
On one trip to Ecuador Merri and I stayed well over a month and did not pay for a single
hotel room. Leaders there helped us scour the country and find our magnificent land just
north of the Equator. We could have never become owners of this precious jewel without
their help. Later when we decided to donate this land to a foundation to help the poor, an
attorney provided all the work FREE.
We do not seek free travel and benefits just to save money. Nor do we write good about
places we feel are bad. Our hearts have to lay with our readers, not with the fringe benefits
of publishing.
With this in mind let’s look at a couple of ethical and legal points.
Tax and Legal Benefits
The tax benefits of publishing can be good at worst, incredible at best. Here is an example
of how good they can be! There is a story that I've been told is taught at law schools:
The story goes like this. A man decided to publish a book, "The Gourmet's Guide to Eating
in the Finest Restaurants in the World". He started his research by traveling the globe and
eating in all of the world's finest places! Finally he returned home. For various reasons he
never got around to publishing the book.
He did, however, take all the costs of his travels and all the meals as tax deductible
expenses. It happened that his tax return was audited that year and the auditor disallowed
this man's expenses relating to his worldwide eating binge. The outraged potential author
was angry about this, appealed the decision and ended up in tax court. In court the authorto-be convinced the judge that his intent had been at the time of taking the trip to write the
book.
The man won the case. The judge ruled that the publishing venture did not have to be
successful. In this case the book did not even have to even be written. If the man took the
trip as research for a book he genuinely intended to write, this was enough!
This is how powerful the tax benefits of publishing can be. I know this is true, because
Merri and I write practically everything in our lives off as tax deductible expenses.
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Everywhere we go we are researching books and reports. We blend travel with work. We
even send our kids off on projects. When you love what you do, the line between work and
play blurs, but not from a tax point of view. They have not learned how to tax us on fun yet!
I have some proof in this pudding. Some years ago the dreaded call from the IRS came.
They disallowed every deduction but each of them stood. At the end of the audit, we
actually received over a $100,000 refund.
I am going to share some tax savings ideas here, but want to start this portion of the lesson
with a word of advice. Get, keep and follow the advice of a tax professional. Tax law is
enormously complicated. Every case is individual. You should not take the general review
we cover here and apply it to your individual situation. The ideas here are meant to be
guides that you can review with your own tax professional. Your tax situation will be
affected by the state in which you live, your martial status, income, wealth, number of
children, partners, staff and many other variables.
You also need a professional because laws that affect you may change. In addition, many
tax laws work only if you adhere to the letter of the law. Without professional advice, you
may get the right theory but miss filing the form, dotting the correct "i" and crossing the
necessary "t". Spend your energy producing and selling books, not being a tax sleuth.
The real potential in publishing is in the fulfillment and money. Publishing can bring tons of
both. The great tax benefits just mean you end up keeping more of what you earn.
Some people I know have gone into publishing mainly for the tax benefits. Much of their
day-to-day living expenses become tax deductible. Take, for example, the pilot who wrote
the book about airport restaurants. His flying became tax deductible.
He was able to depreciate his airplane. He was able to write off the fuel and deduct the cost
of eating in airport restaurants! In addition, any publication about flying or restaurants or
writing or anything else that might relate to his publishing activities (such as books he buys
about writing, advertising or magazines he buys to study as potential advertising sources)
became tax deductible. If he flew to California to research a California edition of his book
(aboard his own or a commercial flight), it became tax deductible.
Part of his car expenses (driving to and from his airplane) could be written off. Computers,
office equipment and supplies became tax deductions. If he worked at home, a room in his
house became an office and tax deductible expense. He could even depreciate the part of
his home that he uses as an office and deduct a portion of his utilities, lawn maintenance,
home insurance, etc.
There are other potential tax savings. If he incorporates his publishing business, he can set
up a pension and perhaps deduct tens (even hundreds) of thousands a year that way. He
can write a medical payment plan (it takes one sheet of paper) and turn every medical
payment, prescription and in some cases even his vitamins into tax deductible expense.
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Those are some of the simpler tax deductions. Any individual who is on a fixed income
without deductions would do well to consider getting into publishing just for the fringe
benefits.
Here are a couple more powerful tax deferral tricks of the trade. If you have a nice profit in
the year and are not keen to pay tax at year's end…do a huge selling campaign at the end
of December.
Have you ever noticed how many selling letters come to you in the mail right at the
beginning of January? The beginning of the year is known by publishers to be a good time
to sell, but there is also a tax reason. If I have a sales piece that I think will even break
even, it makes sense to mail it. In December, if I invest $100,000 in sales expenses, it
goes right off my income as a direct tax deduction. The money then comes flowing back in
January. I have deferred tax on all that money for a year.
The tax benefits can even be better than that. If you sell a periodical that has a money
back guarantee, then the income is not deemed earned for tax purposes until you have
delivered the product.
Let's take my newsletter that sold for $99. If $99 comes in for an issue in December, only
1/12th (or $8.25) is taxable for that year. The only orders I have to pay full tax on (in
the year in which the money is received) are orders I receive in January (which created a
tax deferral the year before!)
Using limited partnerships or limited liability corporations can also defer tax. If you set
up a separate entity for each successful publication you create, you gain tax deferrals and
lawsuit protection.
There are some enormous asset protection benefits as well. Your constitutional rights that
allow freedom of speech mean you can publish anything you desire. No one can stop you
from writing what you want. This does not mean you are exempt from the results of
what you write! (If your publication creates harm you can be at risk.)
However, if you put a publication into a limited partnership, you protect income from that
partnership away from a lawsuit point of view.
If someone sues and gains a judgment against you, he cannot reach the income in that
partnership. You may have written the book, may sell the book, may use the money inside
the partnership in many different ways, but the lawsuit cannot touch that money as long as
it is in the partnership. One other neat little benefit is that the plaintiff gets a judgment
against your interest in the partnership (called a charging order), though they cannot get
the income from the partnership. They are liable to pay tax on this income they cannot
have!
Ask your attorney to explain.
Proof of the pudding? In thirty-six years of publishing I have never been sued. I don’t think
this is because we have been correctly structured legally (we are). I believe this is because
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we have tried to be ethical. We are cautious to make sure that what we publish is not only
correct, but what we genuinely believe. By writing mainly from experience, we hopefully
come across as being helpful, open and interested in our readers’ welfare.
This does not mean we have always been right. No human being can write about specific
investments for thirty plus years and not write about some that become stinkers. Yet most
of the time readers realize that our writing is our best effort and that we make reasonable
efforts to get things right. This not only makes it hard for us to lose a lawsuit, but also
reduces the likelihood that we will be sued.
More importantly, we mainly sell just information. We’ll look at multi-media marketing in a
later lesson. Good merchandising allows every product a publisher sells to lead to the sale
of another product. This creates a fine line that publishes need not to cross.
Take investments as an example. I have had many dozens, probably hundreds of people
offer me commissions if I write about an investment they offer. I have never done this once
I became a real publisher. Keep in mind, I slid sideways into publishing. I was an
investment salesman who started writing and publishing to sell investments. Once I saw I
was earning more from my publications than from my investment sales, I got out of the
commission investment sales business.
I am glad about this as well because there is a fine line between writing an article and
writing a sales piece. This is especially true in investing and if one has an interest in an
investment and writes recommending it to others without disclosure, there is risk.
International Benefits
One reason I began publishing was so I could live, travel and do business around the globe.
I would love this business for this reason alone, but there is an incredible lawsuit and tax
benefit as well.
If you set up an overseas publishing company and have a genuine 50% non U.S.
shareholder or partner tax deferrals can go on almost forever!
You can also forget lawsuits. Assets, especially revenues from book sales that are properly
structured in overseas companies, trusts and partnerships are almost like fortresses against
lawsuits.
Here is a huge tax and business angle for publishing. Publishers get paid most for spotting
unique new knowledge (or finding ancient knowledge that has been unrevealed) to pass
onto readers. One great place to spot such stuff is overseas!
When I began traveling as a young man, I was continually frustrated when I saw enormous
opportunity in one country that did not exist in another. At one point, I ruined my business
by getting into so many deals I couldn't handle them all. But they were all so wonderful!
In publishing, you can make money on every single good deal you see and never have to
get involved in running any of them. You can publish "How to" reports about them instead!
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Here is the best part of all. If you structure each of your publications with a non U.S.
international partner, you can almost forget about taxes until you decide to spend the
money you earn from the deal.
Let me give you an example. I was living in England and saw a unique way to buy Rolls
Royce’s cheap. I wanted to write a report on this.
I looked for a car dealer in the UK and found one on the Isle of Man, where by a fluke there
was a special pool of very under used Rolls Royces. This was a tax haven where wealthy
people moved and brought their cars with them. Because it was a small island they rarely
racked up miles. I convinced this dealer to be a fifty percent partner with me. He had three
reasons to do so.
First, it helped him sell cars.
Second, it helped him make money off the report. Third, as he was in a venture with
a non resident of the Isle of Man this helped him reduce his tax.
I gained four benefits for doing so. First, my new partner had all the data, sources of
information, etc. I need to write the report. He did all the research. Second, I was able to
refer my readers to this man if they wanted to take action. The goal of my reports is to
provide information and contacts. My reports became more powerful because they lead
directly to a contact that can help the reader act on what he learned. Third, my new
partner put up at least half the capital required to create and start selling this report.
Fourth, I gained some almost unimaginable tax and lawsuit benefits on the earnings of this
report.
Contacts
Here are contacts of the tax attorneys I use in my publishing business. Each is an
experienced tax attorney with great international knowledge.
Joe Cox:
[email protected]
Richard Duke: [email protected]
Leslie Share: [email protected]
How to Reach International Buyers
There are a number of ways to begin developing a list of potential readers in the countries
where you want to market.
1. Use the Internet. Build your website to attract readers and then develop marketing
strategies (such as offering special reports to readers of that nation).
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2. Place ads in publications that are local to that country. For example when I began
looking for clients in Hong Kong I wanted to attract English speaking readers. I ran
advertisements in the South China Morning Post, the largest English newspaper in HK.
3. Advertise in international publications such as the Economist, Newsweek, Time, etc.
4. Rent international lists.
EZ to Start
How easy is it to get started in publishing?
If you want to become a real estate broker, in most states you need a college degree. In
almost every state you have to take an exam, work some years for someone else, maintain
a license, continuing education and submit to the authority of a local and state real estate
board.
To be a public accountant, the same is true and more. To be a stockbroker, you have to
pass all kinds of exams, follow the rules of the SEC and be a member of NASD. To do so
you have to waive many constitutional rights.
To be a doctor, lawyer, chiropractor or teacher requires years of school, exams, licenses,
certificates continuing education, etc. Insurance costs are outrageous.
To be a publisher, you simply start. Your decision to be a publisher is all that is required.
When you start you immediately gain special protection under the constitution. You
need no license, no exam, no continuing education and do not have to submit to any
authority other than the common law and your reader's best interests!
Publishing is fun, profitable and it is easy to start! Anyone can do it, woman, man or
couple, young or old, rich or poor. There is publishing opportunity for all.
Case Study - The Biggest Benefit of All-Making a Difference
Money, freedom, fun, tax benefits, travel, material comforts are all important benefits you
gain from publishing. The biggest benefit is that you can make a positive difference in the
world. Whether you want to improve health, save the environment, end war, help the poor,
you CAN make a difference.
Publishing led Merri and me to Ecuador where we fell in love with the country and the
people. We became so enamored with the indigenous people that we formed a foundation
to help them by bringing water to their villages, by building schools, educating their youth,
creation of jobs and recognizing fair trade and creating a healing center.
Here is an introduction to one type of article I publish regularly to help make some positive
difference in the world.
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“What is sustainable living? Enough for everybody forever. If everyone remembered this in
every aspect of healthy living and wealth perhaps global problems would be resolved. Our
business supports fair trade in Ecuador and around the world not only because it is good
business, but because it is GOOD.”
You can make a difference too. Whatever inequities you see in your universe, you can
publish information about this problem and educate your readers about a cure.
Assignment
One of my biggest thrills was the first order I received from Russia. As a baby boomer I was
brought up being told that the Russians were the enemy who could vaporize me in a
moment of nuclear war. To see decades ago, a faxed order from Moscow for our course,
International Business Made EZ, was wonderfully rewarding!
Since any of us can make a difference anywhere and since international business can bring
extra tax benefits to your business plan, your assignment below will help you move forward.
Marketing for one country outside the country where you live is a good way to start.
Answer the following questions for your business plan.
What is the country that interests you?
What is the population?
Where are the potential readers in that country?
What channel of sale can reach these readers?
How would the sale story need to be altered?
Is a translation to another language needed?
What fringe benefits can you receive?
What special benefit and what difference can your publication make in that country?
Writing and publishing worldwide have to be the most exciting, rewarding and stimulating
careers! They enable you to follow your interests, your dreams and your adventures while
employing and enjoying connections, prestige, complimentary offerings, tax benefits and
legal protection!
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Lesson Fourteen
New Age Digital Publishing
White robed hemlocks shiver standing hushed in the dawn. Sweet silence and
snowflakes fall. Sunrise and beauty in the wintered season’s fall.
Little Horse Creek, Merrily Farms, North Carolina. I sat at my desk writing, warmed by
our fireplace that fought the season’s chill.
Winter in the High Country seems harsh with forlorn, grey days, but one reason Merri and
moved from the city to the Andes and the Blue Ridge Mountains is to be closer to nature.
We can run our global business from such remote areas because technology allows us to do
so. We are seemingly isolated, yet the internet and our DSL service connects us to the
entire globe!
In the 80s Merri and I were forced to live in London. London was then the economic center
of the world. When we wrote reports, the research was time consuming and costly.
Libraries and very expensive reports and data services composed our resources.
I wrote by hand, an extensive task. My hands became so cramped I had to tape the pencil
to my fingers. Then Merri had to type it, I had to read it, rewrite and then she edited and
retyped it. Then it went to the type setter, then was reread and sent back for corrections.
Finally, one more reread was required before sending the proof to the printer who prepared
a blueline for one final check before printing.
This process took endless hours. To keep per unit costs low. we printed extensive numbers
of books at a time.
Our overheads included time, typesetting, printing, storage, fulfillment labor and postage.
Plus because we were forced to print volumes of the reports, we also spent vast amounts on
direct mail to move the inventory.
Now we are mainly electronic publishers and our job is so much simpler.
Assume that we travel to a Caribbean island, find real estate values at bargain prices and
decide to write a report. We can visit the island as a tax deductible expense for research.
Then we can supplement what we learn from the internet and use all the other resources we
know through email. Nothing else is really required.
I can feed the data gained into a word file. My spell and grammar checker will help edit the
publication. Merri can clean up anything missed.
We convert the word file to .pdf and load it at our website in a password protected file and
we are in business! We can develop a report in weeks rather than months. We have no
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inventory, no printing bills, no labor costs, no storage fees and no postage! Plus we can do
this from anywhere.
Our business today is almost all via the internet, but there is a middle road between pure
internet and printed paper as well. This type of publishing (never possible in history before)
allows printed paper without large volume print runs and storage. This is called print on
demand.
This lesson shares the experience a good friend and fellow publisher, Michael Blate has had
with print on demand.
Michael Blate is Executive Director of the The G-Jo Institute, POB 1460,
Columbus, NC 28722. Website: www.gjo.com
He is author of nearly 100 books & reports in the field of "self-health" & natural healing
(many of which have been self-published).
He has been a "media guerrilla," and has taught workshops on how to receive free or lowcost media attention & publicity for many years, plus has been a columnist for a variety of
health & medical publications. He has appeared on over 2,000 radio & TV talk shows to
introduce audiences to G JO acupressure & other aspects of holistic healing & wellness.
Here is what he shares about electronic publishing:
Our small family business, a natural health educational organization, came to
the point where reorganization was required because our office manager, due
to a change in her life was leaving the area.
In a business of three people, she was the critical third that kept our business
running.
Our publishing was focused on a simplified form of acupressure or acupuncture
without needles known as G Jo Acupressure. We also offered other, natural
"self health” methods focused on a wide range of ailments and health problems
which can easily be self treated (see www.gjo.com).
We offered dozens of books, home study programs, reports and other printed
publications. Over the years, sales of our educational material have produced
millions of dollars in business, but since the early 90's we downsized our
operation.
Long time friends, Gary and Merri Scott, had suggested we keep our operation
small and move as completely as possible to the new world of digital
publishing.
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For my wife and myself, this seemed like an ideal solution. However, this
presented me with a challenge. Though I have written extensively, I had only
used typewriters or DOS based software programs. I'm completely computer
illiterate beyond basic word processing, and Gail isn't much better.
Digital publishing seemed to require at least a reasonable knowledge of
computers, but it seemed clear that the 21s century would increasingly rely on
electronic publishing. With hope and an open mind, I began to investigate this
new way of publishing. Here’s what I found:
What Is Digital Publishing?
Digital publishing is the next step to an all electronic world of information
gathering and sharing. As the music and movie industries learned long ago, if
material can be so easily shared, it probably will be. So what was to stop
someone from freely passing along our books to many others...or even from
actually stealing our published material, as well?
In essence, nothing prevents it... except maybe a high tech security system,
such as is found on most ‘shopping cart’ pages when you buy something over
the internet. Once a digital publication is in somebody else's hands, it can be
shared at will...just a like a conventional book, except faster, more easily and
far more widely.
We decided that even if it meant the theft of some of our material, it was the
way of the future. So we began.
There are at least three (and perhaps more, depending on when you read this)
ways to get a digital document into a reader's hands.
You can deliver your publication over the internet or by an email attachment.
You can send it to your customer in a digital medium (such as a CD).
“You can convert it into ink on paper through a process known as "printing on
demand." Each method has its strong and weak points. Further, not just print
documents, but also audio and photographic publications can be shared
digitally.
There are at least two truly digital that is, paperless ways to share a document.
One is via a so called .PDF file, which requires special encoding software from
its creator, Adobe, Inc. (see www.adobe.com).
To open a .PDF file, as most people are now aware, you need special,
downloadable software also from Adobe. However, unlike the program that
creates a .PDF file, the software needed to open that document is free ... but
you have to first visit the Adobe website each time you want to re open such a
record.
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“What I learned is that most documents created on a computer running under
modern versions of Windows software can be converted to a .PDF file. And
even earlier files, like some of our own books (created during the dawn of the
Computer Age, decades ago) can usually be converted into .PDF, as well. But
material created before Windows required some reformatting and other
tweaking before being digitized.
Today, creating a new book or other document digitally is a complete no
brainer using the .PDF format: Once you own the software, just write your
material on a computer, edit, produce & prepare your document as usual for
publication push a keyboard button or two, and voila! An Adobe .PDF file now
can be instantly shared!
E-books
An ‘e-book’ is an alternative to a .PDF file. As the name implies it is produced
by software that makes a computer written document readable like a
book…just on a monitor. However, while there are a number of e-book
software packages, there is apparently only one way from Adobe for .PDFing a
document. In short, PDF has become the industry standard for sharing
documents or files originally written in the wide range of word processing
formats.
E-books have to be considered as also rans. In fact, some e-book packages
may even require you to first have a PDF document before creating your e
book. An e-book typically tries to look like a conventional book, just one
coming to you on a screen.
Some e-book programs even create pages that appear to turn; and most will
provide cover pages as well as the other parts you'd expect to find in a ‘real’
book. E-book software technology is advancing at a rapid pace. So your best
advice would be to speak with your local computer store to discover the
current state of the art, if or when you're ready to publish an e-book.
Smaller documents produced in the REALLY old way from the printing press to
ink on paper can easily be converted to the digital format, though larger books
face certain size limitations (discussed below).
The important point is this: It makes no difference if the book is as old as the
hills and has never been entered into a computer. Something called a ‘scanner’
takes care of THAT problem.
The true miracle and salvation of publishing at least from my perspective as a
provider of offbeat information is on demand printing. And as you'll soon
discover, digital material makes that all possible.
The publishing world is dominated by a few, huge players ruled by their
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stockholders' needs. This makes the financial bottom line a publishing house's
equivalent of God. On demand printing helps level the playing field.
Publishing on demand requires a printing company specially equipped with a
high speed duplicating and binding machine (which is actually a kind of souped
up photocopier). That device converts a digital file to a finished book in a
matter of moments.
This miracle of publishing begins when the printing house receives an order
from a customer usually via the internet or other electronic means. The order
could be for one copy or hundreds; the printing company doesn't really care.
Let's say it's for one copy of a book already digitized and on file with that
company. Within minutes or at the most, hours (usually not more than 48) a
copy of that document is printed, bound in any of several means, and out the
door on its way to the purchaser.
There is little if any up front cost to prepare a document already in .PDF format
for on demand printing. For books or other documents published before the
Adobe era, a certain amount of conversion and cost is initially necessary. There
are two ways to accomplish this.
The most expensive way is called ‘flatbed’ scanning. It gives a more nearly
perfect copy of the original document being scanned. This is what you need to
do for illustrations and any material that needs to be so crisp that it is
practically unrecognizable from the original.
If it's a big book, you should probably buy such a device and scan it yourself.
The second way to scan is digitally, via a fax-like arrangement into your
computer.
While adequate for purely printed material, digital scanning is less acceptable
for book covers, photographs and a variety of other material.
A scanned image captures everything on the page, dust motes, stained
areas..EVERYTHING. It is a kind of photograph. As such, each page takes up
a lot of digital space. So a lengthy ‘regular’ book if scanned creates a HUGE
digital document.
Printing on demand is a happy compromise for both publishers and readers
who still feel most comfortable with a ‘hardcopy’ book that is, ink on paper. It
is this alternative only made possible by the digital revolution that unlocks a
truly exciting future for the world of small time publishing!
Gone are most of the middlemen between author and reader the literary
agent..possibly the commercial publishing house...the wholesaler, distributor
and perhaps even the bookstore, itself...
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“Each hand through which a book passes takes a piece of the sale, leaving the
poor author or self publisher with only a few pennies on the dollar.
There is a large and growing list of names of print to demand publishers
including:
www.xlibris.com
www.iuniverse.com
www.lulu.com
...and
www.booksurge.com.
Some other on demand printing/publishing companies during my latest search
included:
www.1stbooks.com
www.infinitypublishing.com
www.trafford.com
www.upublish.com
http://www.fidlardoubleday.com/dpw.html
There is also an excellent guide to print on demand publishers at
http://www.booksandtales.com/podframeo.htm
And there are many more, changing every day and easily found at Google or
other search engines. Encouraged by the list of possibilities, I sent an email
query to a number of them. The company that came back to me in short order
was Booksurge, LLC.
An in-depth review of their website convinced me to take the next step and
give them a call. Their staff proved to be friendly, informative and helpful.
I was told that Booksurge prefers to receive all documents in the. PDF form so
the cost to get into print is minimal. Delivering our publications by email could
also work, especially for those titles that have no illustrations. I could also
send the material on disk in a word processing format, I believe I understood.
As a last resort, I could just send the actual books and reports and let them
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take it from there. They have a preparation or "pre press" division which can
scan our material, if necessary, and do whatever else is needed.
In essence, Booksurge,LLC, is a full service printer that specializes in books,
calendars and such. Once digitized, the document is then uploaded to make it
print ready.
Once prepared, our books and reports can be printed in any of the company's
six, international facilities. Initial preparation of each publication takes about
seven days or a bit longer, if our books need to be scanned or otherwise
prepared from anything other than .PDF format.
Up to that point, on demand publishing with Booksurge,LLC, is only a marginal
improvement over our present operation, except that they have converted our
book for us into the digital domain. But it doesn't end there.
This is an inventory free model. There are no hard choices to make. We do
not have to decide how many copies of a title we buy. At the end of the year
we don’t have to decide whether to pulp a slow seller or pay the inventory
taxes on it.
Then the company lit a firecracker under me! By becoming one of their
customers, our tiny company gained immediate access to a variety of retail
and wholesale outlets so crucial for small publishers!
Believe me, my ears perked up at this, especially when the name Amazon.com
the 400 pound gorilla of book sellers was mentioned,
And not just Amazon. There are other, leading industry names instantly
recognized, as well R.R.Bowker, Baker&Taylor, Ingram, Alibris...
These are the names that authors ultimately depend up on to get their
message into readers' hands. And they were companies with whom our
organization had no, present relationship.
Let me explain how important these names are in publishing. If someone hears
about one of our publications and goes to Amazon.com, the book is not listed
unless there is some connection between us and Amazon. With Booksurge
there will be that connection.
If someone goes to a bookstore and asks for one of our books or reports, the
bookstore staff will check their computer which will be linked to either a
distributor or wholesaler such as R.R.Bowker, Baker&Taylor and Ingram. If my
book or report is not sold by any of these firms, then the bookstore will not be
able to get my publication. With Booksurge the link will be there.
Our connections with these wholesale firms stopped when we stopped our
conventional, long run publishing operation, years ago. Since that time, we've
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mostly had our market to our existing customers, picking up new students for
our material, as we could.
With Booksurge, LLC, our company will suddenly regain our access to both the
wholesale and retail bookselling world. Now the tide might again turn in our
favor, since we become as competitive as any other publisher on earth ... and
not have to carry any inventory to do it!
In that regard, Booksurge, LLC, acts something like a distributor or even a
traditional publishing house. And since books sold through Booksurge are prepaid and non-refundable, it ends common practices in the bookselling industry
that can kill a small publisher: Slow payments and fast returns. Indeed,
Ingram the giant book distributor once devastated us as publishers by first
placing a huge order, then dumping most of those books right back on our
doorstep when they didn't sell within a few months.
Ultimately, we had to destroy those books to avoid paying inventory tax. In
fact, it was largely because of that experience that we left the conventional
publishing business when we did. But with Booksurge and possibly many other
on demand publishers returns are a thing of the past. Other practices, too, help
to rebalance the scales between small and large publishing houses.
In a nut shell, Booksurge becomes both a printer and if we wish a distributor
for our company (or for me, as an author).
Assuming our book has already been digitized, within 48 hours of any order we
place with them (by email or electronically),they will print and ship a single
book to either our company or our customer. That choice is ours.
And we are free to charge whatever price we wish for that book which they
print on our demand. We pay a minimum price (their basic charge), whether
we sell the book or even give it away.
That minimum price depends on the size and length of the actual document.
Like our former print providers, the more copies of a book we order, the less
each book costs us.
If we wish more copies of that same title, it may take a little longer to produce.
Figure an extra day for each additional hundred copies of the same title that
are ordered. The actual printing and shipping takes place at the facilities
closest to the recipient. This is good as it reduces our final cost and puts our
book in the hands of our customer as quickly as possible.
There is another huge plus for small publishers with big aspirations.
Booksurge,LLC, now has on demand printing facilities in several other parts of
the world, with more to come.
This allows us to handle international orders for our books...WITHOUT
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all the extra costs and inconvenience so we presently have for shipping
to our customers in various foreign countries.
The price we are charged for each book depends upon who sells it. For
example, if we order one copy of a 70 page report that we sell ourselves, we
pay Booksurge about $12.00 (plus shipping and handling).
This is acceptable, since it is about the same price we are presently paying for
our photocopied version of that material. But instead of on demand printing
through Booksurge, we had been getting that book or report from a local office
supplies chain store, complete with all the costs and hassles of getting there
and getting it done.
Let's assume we sell that report to our customer for $35.00 (plus additional
handling and shipping costs), Our gross profit then, is $23.00.That is, $35.00
less $12.00, and the customer picks up all other incidental costs.
I know this is a relatively low markup for printed material. In publishing,
usually you need to figure charging at least ten dollars at the retail level for
each dollar you, the publisher, spend out of pocket...especially if your material
is being sold through bookstores in the conventional way.
But, of course, if the market would allow it we could sell that report for even
more, though our cost for it would remain the same. Booksurge makes no
demands on us, other than that we pay the minimum charge per order.
But with Booksurge, we don't have to drive our original, photocopy master 30
miles from our farm to town to get that report printed. Nor do we have to buy
the report in any quantity to get that price.
And, as I've said, if we wanted or needed to buy more copies of the same title
at one time, Booksurge,LLC, has a sliding scale for the price per book they
receive as the printer. This is an important option to have in case our company
wanted to carry inventory of a title, again, for one reason or another... and get
it on short notice.
This might occur, say, if we were to present a workshop and wanted to have
100 copies of that report or book to sell, there.
Further, if we wanted to co-brand that title, it could easily be done. This means
that, if we were doing our workshop at a yoga center, we could put that
center's name on the cover (either alone or with ours). Then the center could
become a partner (and perhaps a wholesale purchaser) of that book, either
during or for weeks and months after our work shop ended. In other words,
there are a number of options open in on demand publishing that did not and
could not exist in the traditional format of long run printing. And as a normal
part of their service, Booksurge delivers to us a finished digital document in
either (or possibly both) the .PDF or ebook format. Then we, ourselves, can
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offer our book to our customers in that electronic format, which we would sell
and deliver via the internet or as an email attachment.
As I mentioned earlier, this process can even be automated so that we might
never actually have to deal with an order again.
We could accomplish this amazing feat of business by connecting with
an ecommerce company that only handles e-book and other document
sales. Its name is Click Bank see www.clickbank.com
And if we want to get aggressive about ecommerce and internet marketing, we
can even reach out to a variety of other marketers of e-books and digital
documents (such as our friends, Gary and Merri Scott). We would do this by
offering them licensing arrangements. For some publishers, if not us, this
could mean a real bonanza...or just spell the difference between success and
failure. Either way, it is as close to receiving free money as you can get.
Finally, one very tasty reason for moving ahead to on demand publishing is the
royalties. Here's how it works with Booksurge: For any purchase made by a
reader directly through a retail outlet (including Booksurge, itself), we receive
30% of that sale.
This is a far cry from the paltry seven percent, or less, I once received from a
conventional publisher, and I still had to do most of the work of selling to
receive it book tours, interviews and the rest of what earns an author his or
her living.
If a wholesaler (e.g.,Baker&Taylor) orders our book through Booksurge, it is
sold to them at a 20% discount off the retail price we have established. We still
retain complete control over our pricing, regardless of where and how our book
is sold.
Twenty percent is a relatively low discount in the bookselling trade. But the
book has already been pre sold to a customer say, through Border's or another
bookstore and it will not be returned. Then our company receives a 30%
royalty of that wholesale price. In other words, if one of our books sold at
Border's for $40, and they ordered it from Baker&Taylor, it would be sold to
the wholesaler at$32.00. Then we, the publishers, would receive $9.60 as our
royalty. Booksurge, obviously, would keep the rest.
Frankly, from a publishing stand point, that’s a great deal for everyone!
Booksurge, itself, is an important source of sales, too. And the company
doesn't just sell ink on paper books. They can also deliver titles digitally, just
as our company will soon be able to do. Normally, a digitally delivered
edocument would cost a customer less than a printed one, since the customer
will still have to print it out, him or herself.
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However, this is not always the case some reports sell for outlandish fees. And
many e-books available on the internet are not even available in hard copy.
The selling industry (for everything, not just books) is only in its infancy, yet it
is already revolutionizing and some say threatening the entire world of
commerce most of us have come to know. In any event, once a document is
in Booksurge's hands, either option is available to a buyer, making it the best
of both worlds.
Regarding that risk of digital theft: I believe the trade off of having our books
and reports widely available in print more than makes up for any loss we might
experience by making them available digitally to readers everywhere. Besides,
we don't HAVE to sell e-books to have the benefits of digital publishing..it's just
extra gravy.
Booksurge,LLC, uses what is called a global publishing system or GPS. Once
our company establishes an account with Booksurge, we get our own page on
their website, and are then able to manage our own account, at least to a
certain extent. On it after logging in with a secure password we can add new
books or other .PDF files, see our sales (retail or wholesale), place orders on
the site, see where existing orders are in the process of publishing, and such.
There is a page that shows shipping details; another shows royalties which are
due us.
There are other pages, too, which we can access pages that contain many
downloadable items that help our company sell more of our publications. After
giving a mean overview of the company's services, she suggested that we send
along all our publications to her to get an exact quote for what we'd need to
get started. I readily agreed. We ended our conversation with my feeling very
enthusiastic about publishing at least about our place and future in it or the
first time in many years.
Let me conclude with a brief review: Digital publishing is becoming the most
important element in the world of communication and will only grow in
importance. There are several kinds of digital publishing, .PDF documents, ebooks, on demand printing and possibly more, by the time you read this.
On demand publishing is not limited to only the printed word. DVD's and other
non printed productions can also work equally well (or possibly even better).
Paperless or digital only publishing works well for shorter documents, but
usually less so for longer one unless they are already in the .PDF format.
There is a large and growing list of on demand printing and publishing
companies. On demand publishers can normally deliver a document either
digitally or on a print per order basis. E-books and .PDF documents are often
less expensive than their link on paper counterparts, but everyone except the
former middlemen in the publishing process will usually make more money
from them.
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All of these benefits hold huge promises of vitality and profitability for small
publishers and far outweighs any problem now on the radar screen concerning
this new medium. Dgital printing and delivery of your publications can save
enormous amounts of time and money, plus can allow you to start your
publishing business for far les original capital. Michael Blate
Assignment
Compare the Costs of On Demand Publishing to Printing.
Review your publication plans.
Calculate the number of pages you wish your publication to be.
Contact three printers and define the cost of printing the number of copies you choose to
print.
Check at various search engines for print on demand publishers. Contact three and define
the cost of printing the same book.
Compare your best cost for regular printing versus on demand printing.
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Lesson Fifteen
Spotting Trends
Leather clip-clops echo on cobblestone squares as bear-skinned soldiers stride by.
Waterfront smells ride on a brisk ocean breeze. A bronzed temptress sits on rocks
overlooking a choppy, windblown sea. What secrets are held in her mysterious
eyes?
Copenhagen, Denmark, Midsummer's Eve. Spotting trends ahead of the pack is one of
the easiest ways to make substantial profits in publishing. This thought was on my mind as
Merri and I flew to Denmark where I spoke at a Jyske Bank's international investment
course.
Nothing can boost your publishing success faster than spotting trends. This is why the
demographic data we have shared in this course is so important.
While speaking at that conference in Copenhagen. I had the privilege to listen to another
speaker, Johan Palladan of the Copenhagen Institute for Future Studies, a think tank that
operates from Denmark.
Mr. Palladan's speech verbalized what Merri and I had been feeling and helped us
understand why the shifts we had been making in our publishing careers made total
financial sense.
The logic formulated from what I heard can help all of us understand what the future might
bring so we can direct our publishing efforts into areas that may become the next big
Microsoft-like winners.
Mr. Palladan revealed seven trends that will affect markets in the economic era ahead.
These trends are:
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
Trend
Trend
Trend
Trend
Trend
Trend
Trend
#1:
#2:
#3:
#4:
#5:
#6:
#7:
The rate of economic change will increase.
The rate of private consumption will grow.
There will be more automation.
Age, sex and wealth are becoming increasingly irrelevant.
There will be a shift of attitude from our brain to heart.
Families will turn more and more of their responsibilities to the market place.
The growth in markets will be for stories, not products.
Mr. Palladan also recommended a book written by the president (Rolf Stern) of the
Copenhagen Institute entitled the "Dream Society" (published by McGraw Hill).
Read this book! It helped us see why the moves Merri and I have made were almost perfect
from a publishing point of view. The book outlines a very believable scenario and shows how
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by following our hearts Merri and I simply acted on an evolution of emotions that a huge
market (the Cultural Creatives) were starting to feel.
The ideas in this book verbalized what we have felt and can help us see the types of
publications that will succeed in the society ahead.
Jensen is clear. His ideas make us think and when we add our own experiences we can see
as well as feel upcoming dimensions. However, the future is never guaranteed so what
follows should be filtered by what you also feel and know.
I call this sixth socio-economic wave that has arrived The Imagination Era.
The nature of our upcoming economy and social structure will be as different as the
Information Era was from the Industrial Era.
This human evolutionary path mankind is riding is well described by Abraham Maslow in his
"Needs Hierarchy" which states that humans move through six steps in life if given a chance
to progress.
The first step in Maslow's "Needs Hierarchy" is to take care of one's physical needs, the
second is to gain security.
After these two levels the third step is to focus on social needs before progressing to the
fourth step of acknowledgement and finally the fifth to self realization.
Maslow years later stated that there is perhaps a sixth step he called idealization or the
need to find a purpose beyond oneself.
Let's put this into day-to-day publishing terms. A person first makes sure he or she has
food, clothing and shelter. If these needs are not fulfilled, not much else matters. Someone
who is cold and hungry rarely thinks too much about how they look or about the social
impact of their process of getting food. Enough hunger and cold will lead people to take
great physical risks to be fed and warmed.
But once the belly is full, the body warm and the larder filled, one begins to think about how
to protect that food and how to stay warm. When secure and comfortable that the physical
needs are and will remain satisfied we start to think about how we look, how we get along
with others and how we fit into our society and family. We want to fit in! At least for awhile.
Then we want to excel, to be acknowledged, in our society or family, as being special, being
good, being more than just acceptable.
When we reach a point where we have convinced others we are special and unique, we
become driven to convince ourselves of this fact. We look for acknowledgement.
Finally, if we prove ourselves to ourselves, we reach a sixth level of having needs that goes
beyond ourselves.
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Our upcoming society will be dramatically affected by this hierarchy of nature and five other
important facts.
First, the fact that parts of the world (industrialized society) have seen a six times increase
in wealth in just one century. Today the average American is 40 times richer than ancient
mankind, an amazing increase.
Second, most of the incredibly rich westerners are still not satisfied.
Third, most of the world hasn't enjoyed this increase in wealth.
Fourth, most of the world, rich and poor can see the discrepancies in wealth between the
rich and poor.
Fifth, the current system does not have sufficient resources to give everyone the lifestyles of
the rich. Watch out for a big U.S.-China clash as China emerges as an industrialized society
and competes with the U.S. for fresh water, clean air, food, oil, timber and such resources.
Pity the rest of the world and think of publications that can help this scenario!
These facts lead to two ways of making wealth in the decades ahead.
The first alternative is to spot new innovations and trends in rich countries and invest in
them ahead of the pack. This is what Bill Gates and his cronies did in the fifth (Information)
era.
The second alternative is to look at less developed nations and see from experiences gained
in industrialized countries to understand what level of needs the developing populations
have. This will help you see what the citizens of these poorer nations will buy next. As
America and other rich countries discard old successes for even greater ones, other less
developed nations will buy the older successes.
Imagination
In western society we now pretty much take the perfection of physical and security needs
for granted. If we buy a new car, we expect it to run pretty much perfectly. This is true of
most consumer products. Fewer and fewer consumers choose one car over another for the
material qualities of getting us back and forth to work. We assume the car will take care of
our physical needs. Instead we buy cars which we imagine fill more of our hierarchic needs.
We might buy a car to enhance our social needs (for example, a mini van may be purchased
to fill the love need related to our family). Many cars are purchased to enhance
acknowledgement. An expensive sports car such as a Porsche has very little utility, but
establishes the fact that one is special. Such a car turns heads.
Often the car will fill multiple rolls. The luxury version of a large four wheel drive sports
utility vehicle (the most popular selling vehicle today) may provide the owner with a feeling
of security, may fit family needs (running the kids to ball games and classes, etc.), suggest
wealth and status and emote that the owner has a rugged outdoor lifestyle.
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This is the Imagination Era because the reality is that all of these additional
factors (which may cost a bomb) may never be used. Few people dare push the pedal
to the metal in their souped up Porsche or Bentley Turbo. Not for long at least. Nature has a
way of eliminating people from the gene pool that drive highways at 140+ MPH. Many
owners of SUVs never turn on the four wheel drive. (Car manufacturers acknowledge this
fact by now making two wheel drive SUV models.) In many instances some features
contradict themselves. Fancy, light colored easy-to-stain, leather seating isn't compatible
with the implied ability to navigate dirty woods, haul muddy dogs, etc. which an SUV offers.
I've watched myself go through all these phases. As a youth I had a car with four-on-the
floor transmission, overhead cam engine and stripes down the side of the car. After getting
into business I had many of the expensive status cars, Mercedes, BMW, Audi, Peugeot,
Bentley, Rolls Royce. Then with five kids and a grandma I shifted to mini-vans though the
whole family were not often all together in the car. I drove all that extra space because I
imagined that having this vehicle was good for the family. Then I threw in a fancy two
person sports car, with superb road handling capacity and wondered every time I drove it
what I was doing with such a car on Florida's straight, never-curving roads. Finally when we
finally had enough money to buy anything we desired, we were happiest in our beat up
1987 F150 Ford pickup.
A Huge Rising Market
Understanding the hierarchy is important in selecting publications because the higher people
move up the hierarchy, the more they pay for the satisfaction of their needs. Pound for
pound, a Chevy Caprice is a lot more car for the dollar than a top line Porsche. (The owner
of the Porsche gets just two cramped seats and risks life, limb and driver's license to use the
performance.) The Porsche owner is paying for something he imagines he will get beyond a
car. Speed, power, friends, romance, whatever. He is paying for some type of story.
Publishers need to understand this when they choose the stories they will sell and tell.
It is the implied power, the acknowledgement, the images the buyer gets that costs the
extra thousands of dollars. The owner may well get this acknowledgement too because of
what others imagine. As the Information Era improved productivity, it created huge markets
of wealthier consumers. These consumers have moved up the hierarchy and spend ever
increasing amounts on ever less tangible goods.
Today, for example, a durable watch which keeps accurate time costs about ten bucks. Any
price beyond is the cost of imagination. A diamond crusted, solid gold Rolex does not keep
better time than a basic Timex. But one could well imagine it does. The owner imagines that
the watch speaks of wealth, prosperity and success. The story of the watch sets its price. In
the Imagination Era the story will become more important than any other feature.
Publishing Thoughts on Imagination Era
Here are some thoughts on the Imagination Era that can help us get a head start
on selecting areas that will be the wave of the future. As you read these ideas,
remember that we can be pretty sure that none of them will be totally correct.
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Economic forecasting and social trends are like forecasting weather. The future
cannot be clearly foreseen. There are too many variables. For example there is a
real chance that society will see teleportation in the next few decades (I recently
read information from the U.S. Government, IBM and Hewlett Packard about
scientific evidence that suggest this is possible.)
Imagine how teleportation would change travel! Automobiles might cease to exist. Yet even
before teleportation shifts from the science fiction to the industrial realm, a series of tapes I
heard suggest it could be obsolete! These tapes were certainly way out but contained
interesting information and some deep wisdom existed whatever the source. One taped
question asked about sightings of UFOs. The reply given was food for thought. "Anyone who
really has the capacity to visit us from such far places certainly does not need space craft.
They would only use such physical objects to step down their presence so they could
communicate with us."
This made me think about the type of breakthroughs we could make in our mental
capacities. We could expand our minds to such an extent (by the time innovation brings us
teleportation) that we won't need Scotty to beam us up. We won't need space ships. We will
not need a physical presence to visit other life forces and places. We may learn how to be so
in touch with our minds and bodies (which are after all an integral part of the universe) that
we do not need to use our five senses to understand a distant object, event or place. We
will simply be able to accurately imagine it with as vivid (or more) input as we now gain
from the eyes, ears, nose, skin and tongue.
Maybe. I stretched our imagination in these last two paragraphs, and this is the point. The
human mind is currently not capable of accurately imagining everything.
But humanity (Cultural Creatives) can get better at imagining! This is why I have coined
this next wave as the Imagination Era. This is also why these thoughts below cannot be
totally correct. The act of my writing and your reading alters what the future will be! So
please read the thoughts below as a stimulus to use with the rich tapestry of your
experience so you can feel what you want to publish.
* Imagination Era Thought #1: The information era has peaked. We can still make
money in Microsoft and the .coms. But the really easy big billions have now been made in
the Information Era.
The first industrial wave water-textiles-iron, lasted sixty years (1785-1845). The second
wave steam-rail-steel, lasted 55 years (1845-1900). The third wave electricity- chemicalsinternal combustion engine, lasted 50 years (1900-1950), the fourth wave petrochemicalselectronics-aviation, only 40 years 1950-1990) and the fifth wave which we are now in,
digital networks-software-new media, is after a decade already near or nearing its peak.
Each wave has been shorter and sharper. Each series of innovations has saturated the
market faster than in the previous wave. If this wave has thirty years of life, it is already
through its infancy and well into maturity.
* Imagination Era Thought #2: We can see the Imagination Era every day. Eras do
not start and stop in a day. We still have textiles and foundries, railroads, airplanes, etc.
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New airlines and car manufacturers still begin. The sixth wave is already beginning to form.
Chances are it will rise even faster and sharper than all those in the past.
* Imagination Era Thought #3: Whatever can be automated will. Such as electronic
publishing?
* Imagination Era Thought #4: Excellence and value will be taken for granted. In
the industrialized world (remember investing in emerging nations will be different) the main
mode of production will be automated assembly lines turning out low cost, highly usable,
dependable products. Innovations in production will take place very quickly within an
industry. Whenever someone comes up with a new, better idea for a product, all
competitors will upgrade to match the innovation very quickly. The value of patents and
proprietary design will fall dramatically (if there are any patents left at all). There will be
very little difference in utilitarian value from one competing product to the next. For
example, it is understood today that most cars will run without trouble for 40,000, 80,000,
even 120,000 miles. Almost any watch you buy will keep accurate, dependable time. Buy a
radio or TV and you expect it to work immediately, easily and to keep working without much
fuss.
* Imagination Era Thought #5: The story will reign king! People will buy products
based on the story behind the product. For example consumers won't buy the cheapest,
best time keeping watch. They will buy a story behind non functional features which they
imagine represents values relative to their lives. Those who imagine themselves rugged
individualists will buy tough, bulky, shock proof, watches that are water resistant to 300 feet
depths, even though they never plan to dive. (Swiss Army watches, for example.) Those
who imagine themselves to be active sports types might choose a Rolex Yachtsman, etc.
Car buyers won't choose value and technological superiority. They will choose a car that has
a story which represents the life style they imagine. Consumers will buy on a far more
emotional basis than before and the emotions will be based on their imagination, hence the
name Imagination Era.
The brand will become the story. We can see this clearly by studying the history of Marlboro
country. In the 50s the tobacco firm, Phillip Morris, was an obscure British company with a
pitifully small share of the American tobacco market. RJ Reynolds was king and the leading
cigarette was Winston.
Marlboro was a cigarette targeted for women smokers with the slogan "Mild as May" and
was going nowhere. Then under new management this all changed. The new managers
created a new image for the cigarette, the rugged image of the Marlboro Man. This image
along with the bold red and white, crush proof box helped Phillip Morris become the world's
leading cigarette manufacturer and pushed Marlboro into the top selling cigarette in the
world. This happened despite the fact that RJ Reynolds revamped Winston so the two
cigarettes were literally identical in chemical composition (with the same additive additives,
etc.). Where Winston could not compete was in the story, the spirit of the Marlboro Man was
successfully placed in people's imagination. Today this story is more than smoke! Marlboro
country has become a brand that sells clothes, trips and many types of consumer products
beyond tobacco.
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Now you can buy Caterpillar boots and clothing and Ralph Loren cars! Everyone up here in
the mountains wears a John Deere baseball cap! These are brands where the story has gone
beyond the original product.
In the Imagination Era the brand story will become more important than the product itself.
Take Disney as an example. They've used the brand story to move from cartoons to movies
to theme parks to an entire development of houses with a certain implied lifestyle. Disney's
story is one of family values and this has appealed to millions of consumers in a multitude of
ways.
* Imagination Era Thought #6: Values will be as or even more important than the
economic value. Consumers will base their buying decisions on private internal values that
will grow in importance. We can see this trend already developing. For example many
businesses have already learned it is good business to now give part of their profits to some
type of charity.
Some businesses have become their values, such as the ice cream company, Ben & Jerry.
Such companies form a new corporate culture each expressing their values through the way
they do business. Such firms express a set of values which states how the firm's convictions
differ from the norm. Consumers who imagine these convictions are good will buy from
these firms because they feel this firm has the ecologically correct or wholesome values that
match how they (the consumer) feels.
In the Imagination Era consumers will perceive these values to be of increasing importance
and will increasingly follow their feelings even when their imaginings may be wrong. In the
early stages of this era this may lead businesses to profess convictions that are not really
felt simply to attract customers. This is a huge mistake. Authenticity is one of the new
era’s strongest desires.
Consumers have too much access to too much information to be fooled for long. This is why
Perrier suffered greatly when it was discovered there was pollution in their process of adding
carbonation to the drink. The story behind Perrier was French, fresh and naturally bubbly
straight from the spring. The pollution was not the problem. The awareness that the water
was not naturally carbonated destroyed the myth of its bubbly freshness and sparkle.
Consumers were not buying water or even taste from Perrier. They bought the image of
fresh French, naturally bubbly, mineral water.
This is also why the recent negatives in the Disney empire has received (over management
battles, golden parachutes and less than wholesome movies produced by Disney
subsidiaries) could be great disasters to the Disney world. These events may be perceived
as something less than clean, wholesome and good for the family and kids. If consumers
imagine Disney as something less than a company that promotes family values, the luster of
their products could be irrevocably tarnished.
The point is imagination is everything. The products, management and work force of a firm
may or may not be as the public perceives. Disney may be a wholesome firm or may be a
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money grubbing, totally ruthless organization. Perrier may be pure or may come from
cesspools. The Marlboro Man may be a rugged individualism or a complete pansy. But what
affects consumers is the public image.
As publishers we want to choose publications that reflect true values because in this day and
age the public is well informed and enlightened. Information is too readily available and this
trend of transparency will grow.
Bill Clinton learned this the hard way during his second Presidential term. There have been
many married presidents who, it has been suggested, had an extramarital involvement
while in office (Roosevelt, Eisenhower, Kennedy etc.), but those were days when
information could be more easily contained.
Today we also suffer a crisis of values. The image of many local community, government,
religious and business leaders has been tarnished. Most consumers are cynical. Yet they
also desperately want someone or something in which to believe. They are looking hard at
not just what every business says but what it does. They will stick (even if it costs more and
is less convenient) with businesses that act by principles they preach.
Employees are in this same position too. One day while passing through the Charlotte
Airport, I was approached by an employee from US Airways. She belonged to a group
named "Chaos" and the message she handed me read:
"Chaos could be coming to US Airways. More than 1000 days have passed since US Airways
flight attendants began to struggle for a new contract. We made sacrifices for the airlines in
bad times. Now that US Airways is making billions we want our fair share. US Airways
Chairman Stephen Wolf and CEO Rakesh Gangwal made a combined $70 million last year.
And they gave other top executives 500% bonuses. But management is asking flight
attendants to make more sacrifices."
This was a clear example of how important the values of a business are both for the
customer and the employees of a firm. If the business needs sacrifices, the trimming will
have to start at the top. In this example US Air's management story of a need to cut back
was not validated by their actions. Therefore the employees were not buying.
The Imagination Era will be highlighted by savage competition. We are seeing this
starting to take place already. Internet companies are putting great stress on other types of
retail businesses and distributors. Then these same Internet firms are competing intensely
among themselves. Take for example Amazon.com which recently moved into the retail toy
business. They are hot on the tail of Toys.com and Toys R Us. When Toys.com recently
came up with a new way to gift wrap toys more easily so toy consumers can get their
Christmas toys delivered already wrapped, Amazon.com immediately jumped on the
wrapping bandwagon as well.
Several .com companies have or are developing software so that before you buy a product
from one Internet firm you can first check prices from competing firms.
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Soon, consumers will be so informed that no one will be able to compete on price and value.
Only stories will sell and successful publishers will need unique successful stories that last. It
will become increasingly difficult for publishers (as it has for politicians) to use duplicity in
the market place. (If you don't agree ask Newt Gingrich who led the attack on President
Clinton's sexual affairs and ended up losing his job over his own similar foibles.) Values will
become more valuable than value in the Imagination Era!
Big Markets
What does knowing all this mean? If we think through how consumers will react, we can
start to see markets for publications that will grow. If we understand which markets will
expand, then we can look for companies that are providing products and services in these
areas.
Here are eight markets that Rolf Jensen believes will prosper which he outlined in the
"Dream Society".
Market for Adventure
Recently the Wall Street Journal featured a front page article about the Replica of Captain
Cook's ship "Endeavor". The article told how people are paying big bucks to board the ship
and live in circumstances so harsh that in days of old, sailors sometimes had to be press
ganged (kidnapped) to serve. Yet men and women now sign up (and pay) to sleep in coed
swaying hammocks hung so closely together they slam into each other like meat hanging in
a locker. Some of the events include climbing up 120 feet on rope ladders in heaving seas
and having sea sickness (the converted barge has little beam so wallows heavily in turbulent
seas). The paying guests are overworked, get little sleep, are continually drenched in icy
seas, are usually cold and at times actually at physical risk.
Yet this adventure tour is sold out because as the Captain points out, "We give the guests
controlled excitement and risk." It has also been pointed out that a best selling maritime
adventure writer who has written several romantic books on the high seas has caused huge
numbers of consumers to imagine that this is a romantic story.
Adventure markets range from professional sports to hot air ballooning to mountain
climbing to diving off bridges and radio towers. The market extends far beyond these actual
acts. The story is what taps the imagination of the consumer! Note that the first successful
around the world balloon journey was sponsored by the watch manufacturer 'Breitling'. This
firm knows that many watch buyers are buying adventure when they buy their watch.
When people buy Nike shoes endorsed by an exciting athlete, they aren't buying canvas,
plastic and rubber. They are buying a story of adventure. Sports offer the essence of
adventure intense competition, the ecstasy of success, the pain of defeat, the high stakes
that separate the winners from the also-rans.
Even sports stars are becoming story brands (Michael Jordan, etc.) more than ever before.
One can expect to see Michael Jordan shoes, clothes, etc. Henry Ford understood the
adventure market's impact on the car business when he said, "We race on Sunday and sell
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on Monday". Today the Camel Trophy Cup is an adventure, an enormously grueling race
which sells cigarettes, and much more (watches, shoes, bags and clothes).
Consumers do not even have to take risks to gain these adventures. Increasingly consumers
will gravitate to sanitized (without risk) adventure. Cruise lines are becoming overbuilt and
will become more competitive. The winners may become the lines which create theme boats
where the guests live an era or event. There may be "Roaring Thirties Cruises", "French
Connection Boats" and "Western Pioneer Cruises". There may be "Titanic" and "Lusitania
Cruises", etc. I would not be surprised to see a liner converted into battleships that act out
battles. The guests will dress, act and live the adventure while on board.
As the Imagination Era advances, it is possible that computers will become increasingly
powerful automating our emotions as they bring us sanitized adventure.
We can already see this trend developing in the publishing field by observing one huge
electronic publishing success, the best selling computer games that simulate Big Game
Hunting. With this game, virtual hunters can take trips all over the world and hunt many
types of game. These games allow the enjoyment of adventure, the out of doors and the
rush that has been instilled in our genes by thousands of generations of hunter-gatherer
ancestors.
Users of this electronic publication can hunt, track and kill. Yet they never have to step in
the woods. They don't have to get into shape. They don't have to haul the heavy game out
of the woods, figure out what to do with all the meat nor face the blood. They don't have to
put up with the rain, the cold, the leaky tent, the fatigue and the inconveniences. These also
allow conservation and ecological advances.
How convenient! Whenever we want, wherever, night or day we can let the adventure
begin!
Listen how the advertising copy reads in Cabela's catalogue for the computer CD Rom game
"Big Game Hunter".
"From the dense forests of the Alaska Highlands to lush Georgia woodlands, this game takes
the virtual hunter where they have never gone before." Big Hunter II offers an African safari
and its expansion pack the high, rugged terrain of Colorado, Alberta and the all new
Kentucky region.
Imagine. If you have $19.99 and a computer the adventure can begin, just about anywhere
in the world! Such is human nature, to strive and have balance in our lives. Genetically we
have been programmed for 100,000 years for high risk living. The more civilization
eliminates risk, the greater our desire will be to take or imagine it through adventure.
Togetherness
Another key motivator in the Imagination Era is emotional fulfillment. Many wealthy
consumers have learned that just acquiring stuff is not enough. More and more things don't
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satisfy much or for long. At some point our material excesses turn into junk, worthless
burdens that cost us to store, clean and insure. Successful sixth wave publishers will learn
to attach symbols of love and togetherness to their products and services. There will be a
growing business in ties that bond people together.
Coffee houses and similar places of gathering will continue to boom. Clubs will grow.
Restaurants which offer a place for people to be together will thrive.
The "Dream Society" suggests that Cafes Philos, (there are about 50 in France now) clubs or
cafes where a philosopher raises a question to create a discussion for all present to join, will
boom around the world. This market is not just about being together, but is about being
united by a common story. The root of this market is the 100,000 years of selective
processing of human genetics which have favored those who belonged to packs or tribes.
This idea has now reached the U.S. A Time Magazine April 5, 2004 article, “All the Right
Questions” by Anita Hamilton confirms this fact. Here is what the article says.
“Discussion groups based on the teachings of Socrates are reviving the art of conversation.
There is a buzz in the air at the El Diablo Coffee Co. in Seattle. Known as a Socrates Café,
the group at El Diablo is just one of 150 or so that meet in coffee shops, bookstores,
libraries, churches and community centers across the country.“
Think about how this can apply to any publication you launch. This is a strong trend and it
will have an impact on many businesses so keep your eyes open to man’s search for the
truth. Spotting this trend can have a magical effect on your publishing career.
For example, why not publish a virtual philos café?
Call it "Foodforthought.com" or something like that. Throw out a philosophical idea each day
and let everyone give an answer in some bulletin board type form. I can visualize some
really exciting graphics.
Earnings come from fees a person pays to be a virtual patron and advertising. This income
could be followed as your virtual patrons grow with philosophical weekend get together,
books and reports.
This is a good publishing idea!
Training Dogs & Making Big Bucks
Merri and I recently learned a valuable lesson about this genetic power. We have lived our
entire lives together without having a pet, even though we love animals (I grew up the son
of a zookeeper and we always had pets ranging from dogs and cats to bears, lions and
tigers). Merri grew up with so many horses and dogs and cared so well for them that her
mother (whom we used to call Ma) always said if there was such a thing as reincarnation
she wanted to come back as Merri's dog!
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Yet with our busy travel schedule, we have not felt we could give an animal the attention it
deserved. So when we moved to our farms, the habit stuck. Then one day when we were in
North Carolina at our Merrily Farms a whisp appeared as I was hoeing in our pumpkin patch.
She was a puppy hound, about six months, all floppy eared, white black and tan, (pure
mixed breed). She was dishelved, pitifully thin, matted hair, shivering in the cool mountain
air. Her right hip was broken. Someone had beaten and dumped her, leaving her in a mess,
near death. Yet she sat there, quietly watching and patiently waiting as if she didn't have a
care in the world. It seemed this was exactly where she was supposed to be. It was. Some
spark touched my heart as I worked in that soft earth. I had to stop and haul her back to
the farm house.
The last thing we thought we needed was a dog, especially a sick one, but the pup was
there and needed our help. She had arrived on the first anniversary of the passing of Merri's
mother. And Merri's mom had a broken right hip and ulcers (the poor puppy's stomach was
so ruined she could barely eat for weeks).
Now we're not sure about reincarnation, but we saw the coincidences and I named the
puppy, Ma. We took her in and she was so sick in the first weeks, each night as we settled
her down in front of a roaring fire, we didn't expect to see her in the morning. But Ma's
tough (just as her namesake) and she pulled through. We knew she had made it when one
morning she actually woke us up and wanted to eat!
But once we pulled her through her physical suffering, we now had a bigger job. Poor Ma
had obviously been abused (mostly by a large man with a beard-when a man of this
description used to appear she would shriek, and cower in fear or run for her life). She
needed enormous love and care to overcome her fears and rid her of the avoidance she no
longer needed. She needed help. She had to be trained. We started a search for a dog
trainer when felicity stepped in. To our surprise here in the middle of nowhere, just ten
minutes from the farm, is a kennel owned by the well known dog trainer, John Quy. John
had decided, like ourselves, to have a farm (Little Horse Creek Farm) in the "Lost Province".
You may have seen or read the "Horse Whisperer". John is the Dog Whisperer and the day
we started Ma's training I knew this course was about much more than just training dogs.
John also teaches martial arts and admittedly does not train dogs. He trains and enlightens
the dog owners teaching them how to use body language to speak to the dog.
"A dog's brain, his makeup, his hundreds of thousands of years of genetics have never
prepared him to use voice commands," John explained. "Yet the dog's entire being is geared
up to understand your body language. Dogs sense even the most minute physical nuances
you project. Dogs are pack animals. The entire history of dogs has created an animal today
which has the best chance of survival if it can communicate with a pack. Your dog is part of
your family and you must become the leader of the pack. Let's learn how to communicate
through your body language with the dog."
Within six weeks Ma could sit, lie down, come on command and stay. She has learned so
well, even if her favorite food or toy is put nearby she will not break from her position until
given the command. Yet to give her these commands I don't have to say a word. Words
now work but I can communicate with her entirely through body language. This seems a
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near miracle as hounds are notoriously hard to train especially when they begin training so
late in life. Ma is so proud and feels much better about herself. She no longer cowers or is
afraid. We have the beauty of a dog that obeys and we can protect her more easily if she
runs into risk. And she feels so good about herself and her role in the pack.
There was no miracle though. I have simply learned how to communicate as a dog does
(which I can do now) rather than try to get the dog to communicate like a human being
(which she cannot do).
Imagine my surprise when shortly after these training sessions I learned how scientists
claim that 80 percent of the human brain capacity is used to process visual (body rather
than oral language) impressions.
This is the moment I understood why the togetherness market has such huge potential
during the upcoming imagination wave. This also helped me understand why despite video
conferencing, computer training and radically improved telecommunications that meetings,
conferences, business schools, places where people meet, etc. are growing at a rapid rate.
People prefer (we can even say they need or are compelled) to meet face to face! Evolution
has honed the most likely human to succeed into a tribal person. We have deep seated,
genetically supported needs to physically spend time with the tribe!
The more proponents of technology try to cram videos, telephones, computer screens and
such down our throats as the ultimate means of communication, the more we will want to
get together!
This favors businesses such as theme parks (family togetherness), shopping malls (theme
parks based around shopping) and educational systems where people actually get together.
Friendship
The market for friendship has to grow because technology has made society so much more
mobile. I for example have lost nearly every single really good friend from school. I haven't
seen or talked to Larry, Art, Tommy or Jerry for thirty years. I imagine they still live in
Portland, Oregon, but maybe not. They might all have become travelers like myself. Out of
a six pack of school buddies, Steve is the only one with whom I keep in touch.
A couple of weeks ago I visited the local car mechanic (Jay Dee's his name) with my next
door neighbor Jim to have some work done on my beat up 1986 Suzuki Samari Jeep. This is
the perfect farm car but often needs work (I had actually mended the problem up with a tin
can but finally it had to go to the shop). Jay Dee's garage is in a barn by his house and local
people sort of collect around that barn to shoot the breeze, spit a little tobacco and talk over
old times. "Remember Johnny Blevins and that time he threw you in the creek, Jay Dee,"
Jim might say. "Well darn that must a been fifty years ago." I love being with these
wonderful mountain people and their easy going, friendly ways. They have such deep roots
and ties so they are comfortable and at ease with their friends. They know who they are,
where they are and who their friends are because they have been with them their entire
lives. These people aren't hanging around Jay Dee just to get their cars fixed. They are
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enjoying a ritual of friendship that has united them since they were kids. I love this! My
friendships are scattered and far flung all over the world. I sometimes don't get to see my
friends for years!
A huge segment (much of the wealthiest) of the population no longer lives where they were
brought up and have lost touch with their roots. The more technology removes us from our
origins, the more the market for togetherness and friendship grows.
Friendship is an extension of togetherness and can develop around many themes. For the
mountain folk of North Carolina or anyone who remains rooted in their birthplace the theme
is mostly "down home". These friendships are tight and if you have ever heard the phrase
"You ain't from around here, are ya, boy?" you have experienced the reverse side of this
type of friendship. The implication is that with these long term, locally based friendships, the
only way to be a friend is to have been there for years.
Part of the years I lived in Gloucestershire, England were spent in a tiny village named
Chalford. I regularly visited a local pub there, "The Mechanics Arms". Though I was a
newcomer to the area I was accepted as an old timer because of family ties. One man in his
sixties, who visited the pub every night however wasn't quite part of the crowd. Many of the
locals talked about him as the new man in town. I was surprised later to learn he had lived
in Chalford for nearly thirty years! The locals would always view him as less trustworthy
because he had not been born and raised there. Childhood experiences were the basis of
their deepest friendships.
Many of us will never have this type of long term familiarity friendship. We have moved
around too much. This creates markets for many types of new friendships. Networking is a
form of business friendship. The theme of the friendship is “scratch my back and perhaps I
can scratch yours” or we will both be better off scratching each others' backs. Such
friendships can be local, state or country wide or as mine span the globe. They can be very
informal or very formal.
The market for formal friendships has already exploded. Incredible growth of support groups
such as AA are a sign of the momentum in the friendship market. Such groups offer a
format for formal friendships and range from disease support groups to abused support
groups. Each offers an organized way to have friends. The growth of these groups is not
because there are more problems than thirty years ago. The growth is because of the
increasing market for friendships.
We can see this trend spreading everywhere. For example one telephone company has
recognized this growing trend and has successfully built its business around the idea of
calling "family and friends".
Love
Love is an even deeper extension of togetherness and friendship. Though we often link love
with romance, it is something far deeper. Love is the moving force of humanity, the world,
the universe and possibly all of existence. The 14th century Sufi poet, Rumi, describes love
as the spark that gives grass the animal enthusiasm.
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The market for love affects multitudes of markets, jewelry, perfume, movies, music, (most
songs are about love) weddings, funerals and the home.
Living in the mountains of North Carolina and Ecuador these last years has given me
insights about how the funeral market is changing. I have had a chance to attend funerals in
a modern US city and in both mountains. When a neighbor's mother passed away in North
Carolina, I saw that the tradition is to dig the loved one's grave personally and bury them in
the family plot. The minister and the congregation have known the beloved their whole lives
long.
In Ecuador the whole village comes out and carries their friend to the cemetery. What a
reflection on how wonderfully different this is from the slick (expensive) funerals so often
choreographed in our busy, modern era. Time savers such as drive through viewings, non
individualized services and other efficiencies get one group out and another in as fast as
possible. The car procession behind the hearse is gone. Waiting for the body to be laid to
rest is eliminated. Time for the service is limited by the time until the next customer can
come in. Sympathy is for sale but the service is set by market conditions not love nor the
loved one's grief.
Yet this is the way the world has been going and though we may not like this, change will
remain for some time to come.
Watching what we like and don't like is one secret in publishing success. Changes bring new
cultures but also counter cultures. Big banks are efficient and reduce banking costs, but also
create markets for small community banks where you can still talk to your banker.
Impersonal funerals may lead to a counter market where the commercialization is taken out
of this rite of death. I for example predict that books on how to bury your loved one
personally will do quite well. Land in the country for family burial plots and simpler
cremations followed by a country like service out of the city are the types of counter
services that are likely to rise.
Smart publishers spot both the trends and counter trends and can make money in both
ways. So watch for ways to make money publishing information about old fashioned
funerals.
We all need love. No song ever stated a truth better than the song "What the World Needs
Now is Love Sweet Love, That's the Only Thing That There's Just Too Little of". No matter
what technology brings, no matter how fast the world turns, one thing we can be sure of is
that everyone will be seeking in one way or another to receive and express love.
Publishers should never forget this truth! On one hand we can see that, as with the
friendship market, the love market is skewing in the direction of organized love.
Our fast paced lives make it increasingly difficult to be together and express our love in
traditional ways. As we have less time to spend in our house we will spend more making the
house a symbol of family togetherness. Houses will become more than status symbols, they
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will become love symbols (matching accessories, communal living rooms, etc.) Look at who
is advertising in many, many publications and you will see ads for new modern designed,
super comfort beds. This is partly created by a growing market caused by sleeplessness in
an increasingly hectic, unknown and worrisome world, but is also due in part to the love
market. The bed is a symbol of love, the place where couples spend time together.
Perfume and chocolate shops abound in airports so that overworked executives, forced away
from home for longer than desired can easily return with these tokens of love. Expect
jewelry shops to grow in airports as well.
Love is the key market for the Disney corporation, its theme parks and movies offering
organized ways that parents can express love for their kids.
Film manufacturers that succeed also know that love is more important than the quality of
film. People take pictures at love events (family reunions, holidays, vacations, birthdays,
etc.) and want these pictures back quickly so they can affirm again and again their love.
Carry this thought along the avenues of modern technology and you can understand the
phenomenon of family home pages. Millions have been posted on the web. Why would
someone go to the trouble of putting their family tales and pictures into a computer? This is
a modern way of saying, "See how much love we have".
In the future psychologists may look back and talk about the movie "You Have Mail" as a
harbinger of what was to come. We have moved from mail order brides to email
relationships.
But make no mistake about it, these love markets are supported by the desire to meet and
fall in love. Just as in "You Have Mail" the users of electronic getting together services
eventually want (at some level) the virtual experience to become physical.
This also explains the explosive growth of false love, such as telephone sex and Internet and
movie porn. These relationships may remain virtual porn but are still supported by the need
for love. Eporn by the way is quite different than some aspects of live porn. Strip joints,
etc. are often a place where buddies (men or women) get together. In this instance strip
joints are a theme for togetherness. The computer on the other hand is currently a solitary
instrument and the user of this type of porn is expressing a deeper need than the groups
that visit the strips.
Perhaps we should examine how large the market for different types of group computer
publications where groups get together at one keyboard and screen rather than being at
opposite ends of a computer. We can see the underlying desire for making the computer a
more social instrument with the growth of computer cafes where the solitary nature of
computer use is juxtaposed with the need for togetherness. Publications that pull these
groups together could be hot.
There is another far pleasanter aspect in the development of the love market which is the
revival of spirituality. Humanity's affluence has allowed us to see that logic, science and
affluence don't have all the answers we are allowed to live more in our imagination.
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Consumers in the sixth era will place more value on intuition and beliefs that seem to defy
socially accepted norms or scientific standards. They will respect their feelings more and
their thought processes less. They will understand better how little their brain can really
compute compared to what their entire being can know. Consumers will become more
holistic and do more based on what they feel. Values will become much more important
than things and processes more valuable than products.
I use the term spiritual revival instead of religious revival because there is a crisis of values
in religion as well as at home, business and in politics. The wisdom of the cleric has been
unmasked and we have shifted from the eras of the Church and Guru to the era of the
individual.
The individual has been empowered economically and educationally by technology as has
become empowered spiritually as well.
In the world of money, bankers had similar powers at that time. Money was placed at the
bank for low, guaranteed return. Investors did not question what bankers did with the
money or how much bankers made. They just did what the banker said. When this image
was threatened in the U.S. in the 30s, the government even stepped in to prop up this
belief. Deposits at banks were FDIC guaranteed. The only way to stable wealth was through
the bank.
As mankind became more educated a shift into the "Era of the Guru" gave individuals more
responsibility for their actions and developed a more flexible, personal attitude towards
spiritual growth. Beginning with Yogananda, gurus from the East became popular. The
transcendental meditation movement which began in the 60s attracted millions of followers.
The message of these gurus was, "There are many paths to God. You should take your own
unique path." Salvation was not guaranteed but success was implied. "Everything will be
okay if you follow my exact instructions." The follower was eventually allowed to share a
direct connection with God but only by following the Guru's direction.
About the same time the world of finance began a radical change. The era of the mutual
fund began to unfold and mutual fund "Gurus" began to emerge. Their message was
different from that of the bank. These financial Gurus said, "There are many paths to
wealth. You should take your own unique path. Nothing is guaranteed but if you follow my
selections you can sincerely be rich." The investor had a direct path to wealth and took the
risk. I myself used to write a monthly column for a magazine for stockbrokers and was
called by the editor, The Global Guru.
Now we have entered the era of the individual. A recent interview with the inventor of
Hotmail gives us a clue of how this era's spiritual development might unfold. When asked to
define what he meant when he said he was a practicing Hindu he explained that Hindus
select their own set of values, live by them and accept the responsibility of that action.
There is potential for this type of concept to grow in the era ahead. The spiritual guru is no
longer needed, though he can be of help. The master becomes a guide or a partner that
helps the individual (when asked) rather than dictating a direction.
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Simultaneously in the world of finance, day traders and better informed investors can now
skip mutual fund managers and even stockbrokers to buy and sell shares for themselves.
The entire securities industry is being squeezed by the inability to charge high fees. The
customer knows too much (including the fact that of the 3100 U.S. mutual funds in business
for the last ten years only 21 outperformed the Dow). The average investor has access to as
much data as the pro! The costs of mutual fund managers and brokers can be avoided.
Instead fee based advisors (Certified Financial Planners) are becoming the leaders within the
industry. The investment guru is no longer needed, though he can be of help. The
investment manager becomes a guide or a partner that helps the individual (when asked)
rather then dictates a direction.
Look at the thoughts above in relation to the three sub cultures, Traditionals, Moderns and
Cultural Creatives.
There is a chance that we will see fragmentation in religion, investing and politics in the era
ahead. A variety of stories will compete to attract the hearts, wallets and loyalties of people.
More and more consumers will shift their buying habits, life styles and even the countries
where they live based on the images they accept.
We can see this trend in U.S. politics with the formation of a new Reform Political Party
originally formed by H. Ross Perot. This was a sign that more and more voters were
dissatisfied with what the big parties were telling them what to do. An even deeper
indication is the rise of the many militia groups across the U.S. These voters are so
dissatisfied with government they consider it the enemy. Now the government is beginning
to accept even these groups.
The FBI now has a program that reaches out and set up lines of communication with militias
to let them know that the police respect the Militia's rights to be anti-government as long as
they don't break laws.
Yet there are huge discrepancies in the beliefs of the various militia. This is the sign of the
drift. We are likely to see many smaller political parties, many smaller groups each claiming
sovereignty over their rights. These smaller groups will decide how they want to educate
their kids (this could bring growth to religious and charter schools), how they want to take
care of their health (this could bring growth to alternate health care), how to eat (diet
books) and how to put their faith into practice (this could bring growth to businesses that
have a moral as well as economic drive).
Yet all of these trends are ultimately driven by the individual's need to give and receive
love.
Care
Then there is the market for care. This is another extension of the love market. We have a
need to give and receive help to and from others in the tribe and this trend will change the
largest industry in the US. The heath care industry is over a trillion dollar industry and is
undergoing profound changes. (More on this next lesson).
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How to Get Clues
We can get clues about trends by watching what everyone reads. Continually check and
analyze best selling books lists. Best selling book lists are like a window into a
nation’s soul.
Look beyond the title itself for the emotional factor that moves all these readers to action.
This may be easier than it seems because the fundamental rule for spotting trends is to
assume that people either want:
•
•
•
Keep something they have. (fear factor)
Recover something they had that is gone. (Nostalgia factor)
Get something they have never had. (Greed factor)
I was paid several million dollars to learn a lesson about the fear factor when a
reader came to me and recommended a book entitled, “How to Survive the
Upcoming Crash of 1995”. This was a great little book all about how U.S. Federal
debt was out of control and would destroy the economy shortly. Great, though
totally wrong. This book enhanced the fear factor and scared the baloney out of
me (and I don’t not even eat baloney). The book’s essence was that debt would
destroy the US dollar. The dollar crash would destroy the economy. The failed
economy would destroy the banks, the system, everything…. Oh,, Oh,Oh. How
scary. This shook me and I wrote a marketing piece based around Figge’s book.
This worked like magic and millions rolled in. Having that piece was like inheriting
a gold mine.
I wondered for ages why that piece worked so darn well and then realized it was
because the book was on the NY Times best seller list. Many of the people I
reached had already read the book and were pre-frightened (as I was-this is the
Golden Rule at its best). Along came my selling piece offering a solution to the
scare.
Keep in mind the premise of the book and my selling piece were totally wrong. The US
moved into the biggest economic boom ever. There was no collapse! Fortunately the
course being sold was good enough that it still aimed readers in the right direction. I picked
up thousands of new loyal readers and kept the millions.
I read the NY Times list a lot after that. Now I use USA Today’s list as this paper
has a higher circulation, plus I feel the USA reader demographics are closer to
mine.
Another example? Over the last few years two authors have had special, phenomenal
success. There are nostalgia trend clues so powerful you could say they are like magic.
Nostalgia is a word to describe the aspect of human nature that wants to recover something
once it is gone
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For example, once the building trade perfected low cost, efficient, central heating, a new
trend began. Everyone wanted a fireplace. Is it smoke and ashes and the labor involved in
building a fire that mankind misses? Probably not. Perhaps we are seeking the emotion of
romance.
Once America created a smooth highway system so anyone can drive anywhere without
hardship or bumps, four wheel drive, off-road SUVs became the most popular form of
transportation. Do we long for the sweat of replacing blown out tires ruined by potholes?
I doubt it. Most four wheel drive SUVs never leave the pavement! But I’ll buy that we feel
we had lost the emotion of adventure.
Get the drift?
So when two authors in a matter of years, for the first and second time ever, have three
books about magic on the New York Times best selling book list (all on the list at the same
time), we have to ask what people are seeking.
First J. K Rowling had three Harry Potter books on the list at one time. No author
ever accomplished this before! Then Dan Brown came along and did the same
thing. His Da Vinci Code was such a success that readers scooped up so many of
his previous books they all raced to the top ten list at once.
What were people seeking when they read those books? What special element unites the
Rowling and Brown books? Harry Potter is about magic.
The Da Vinci Code is about hidden codes that lead to the Holy Grail.
The common link? Secrets! Both authors write about mysterious, hidden secrets.
Starting with the nostalgia factor, let’s work backwards and ask what people seek
from these books. If they want magical secrets in their lives, what have they lost?
Perhaps it is something they can trust? Look at their trust for the institutions we have been
taught to rely on, the government, police, religious centers, industry, educational
institutions, science, even our athletic leaders. All have been involved in scandals, defrocked
and shown as immoral, using deceit, lies and fraud.
Yet man is a social animal. We need to believe. We need to belong. We need to feel we
know truth. Consequently we are looking for reality’s secrets to believe. Maybe we feel
these truths are being kept from us?
This may have something to do with the fact that the book “The Purpose Driven Life: What
on Earth Am I Here for” by Reverend Rick Warren skyrocketed to the top of the best sellers
list and has stayed there for years.
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Rick Warren calls himself a stealth evangelist and has built a huge congregation and
evangelical system that is so far reaching that his recent book, The Purpose Driven Life:
What on Earth Am I Here For has sold 4.5 million copies and was on the New York Times
best sellers list for 23 weeks. George and Laura Bush, Karl Rove and Karen Hughes have
read it. Warren calls his approach stealthy and the article says it’s because he is not slick.
He doesn't even wear a suit, but prefers Hawaiian shirts and boat shoes without socks. And
there have been no scandals!
He does not appear on shows such as Oprah, doesn't do big public events, etc. He teaches a
simple mantra, "You are here for God." His mission statement, "I've got a target called the
globe: The whole Gospel for the whole world." His story line is that as a fourth generation
pastor he is fulfilling his father's dying wish: to "reach one more for Christ."
Reverend Rick I believe is enjoying the same trend as Harry Potter and the Da Vinci Code,
and here is a vital point. I believe Harry Potter appeals to Cultural Creatives, Da Vinci
appeals to Moderns and Warren appeals to Traditionals.
In other words some emotion cuts across every demographic sub-culture!
These books reach the "Whom Am I" market and succeed because they fit into the
"Convictions" market as well. These authors succeed because they and their characters are
not screwing their powerful messages up by stealing money or messing around with choir
members and such scandal stuff.
Here is what these success stories tell us as publishers:
1. Look for publications that sell conviction.
2. Look for publications that are low key and use ground swell strategies of the common
man rather than rely on media, hype and flash.
3. Look for publications that use new ways to reach the market place.
4. Look for publications that help people grow in non material ways.
5. Look for publications that are transparent and "walk their talk".
6. Look for publications with powerful non material mission statements, challenging
mantras and emotion evoking sales stories.
7. Finally, look for simplicity and authenticity. Consumers are grasping desperately for
this in our ever increasingly complex world. We all want what we don't have! The
profit of this is that two new successful magazine are “Real Simple” and “Real”,
Remain ever vigilant. Fortunes are lining up in this new era for those who keep
looking for success stories such as Reverend Rick. If when you spot achievement
such as this ask "Why?"
We also see the greed factor in titles all the time. “The Secrets of how to have.”
ways to achieve” etc. etc.
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Seven
Another Source of Clues
Here is another way one smart publisher learned how to look through the window of the
nation’s soul. Many decades ago a publisher had a successful line of “Little Blue Books”.
These were very inexpensive books on everything, “The Little Blue book of How to Bank”,
“The Little Blue Book of Blackjack”, “The Little Blue Book of How to Buy a Car”. The titles
went on and on. Each was a very simple, very basic, very condensed guide to the
fundamentals of the subject.
Some years ago another publisher decided to duplicate this idea and discovered two
important facts. First the idea worked better than expected because many multiple orders
came in. People ordered numerous little blue books at a time. Second, and most important,
the publisher was able to spot trends and build focused lists. When he saw special interest
in one little blue book title or another, he then created a more comprehensive product
around this interest and began marketing it. Of course the list of blue buyers of that titled
were marketed to first.
I use this philosophy in our magazine service. We continually try different things in each
magazine looking for ideas that take off. Then we can pass them onto all the magazines we
serve.
Trends Are Smart
There is a difference between trends and fads, Fads are short term trends that come and
go. For example losing weight is a trend. America is too fat and resolving this will take
decades. Low carb diets are fads that comes and goes. There has been one form or the of
low carb diets around for three decades, but each is a fad. As I write this, the Atkins Diet is
big, but before this there was the Stillman and others.
Trends are underlying groundswells of human action supported by one of
mankind’s true evolutionary needs.
Consider what happened to investors who got into the seven following trends at their
start…automobiles, petroleum, TV, telephone, airplane, computers and the internet. These
were long term shifts.
But how do we spot such trends in the beginning. All the ideas above were resisted. The
establishment knew that “Man could not go faster than the speed of a horse”…and “If God
had wanted man to fly, he would have given us wings”. On the invention of TV: The radio
industry knew the idea was a joke.
An article in Time by Lance Morrow entitled “Triumph of the Masses” can help us
understand. This article reviews the book, “The Wisdom of Crowds, Why the Many are
Smarter than the Few and How Collective Wisdom Shapes Business, Economies and
Societies and Nations”, James Surowiecki.
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Morrow begins by telling how at the annual West of England Fat Stock and Poultry Exhibition
in the fall of 1906, a British scientist became interested in a weight judging competition. 800
people, smart, dumb, old, young in all types of professions guessed the weight of two
dressed oxen. The correct answer was 1,197 pounds. The scientist’s research found that the
collective estimate was incredibly close, 1,198 pounds.
The book suggests that there is an uncanny and generally unconscious collective intelligence
at work. The book shows how clouds of birds seem to move in one mind but actually are
each acting on their own following four simple rules: #1) Stay as close to the center as
possible, #2) Stay two body lengths away from your neighbor, #3) Do not bump into
another bird and #4) If a predator dives at you get out of the way.
The book suggests that rather than crowds being mindless mobs that the many are weirdly
smart and effective even when many of the group are average or below in intelligence or
experience.
A key point that the article makes is that there is incredible effectiveness in a diversity of
individual intelligences.
Next time when you see society, mankind or the stock market acting in a way that appears
to be dumb, ask why? There may be an intelligence at work that can guide your publishing
to the next important trend.
Always think about how trends apply to any publication you offer. Trends can have
enormous impact on business so keep your eyes open. Watch for humanity’s search for
truth. Spotting trends can have a magical effect on your publications and the success you
have in writing.
Assignment
Get USA Today, Amazon.com and New York Times best sales lists.
1.
2.
3.
4.
5.
6.
7.
Look at the fifty top sellers.
Compare differences in best sellers on each list (if any).
List any genre or author that has more than one best seller.
Analyze why genre or author might have the national psyche’s attention now.
Compare fiction best sellers with non fiction best sellers.
List any similarities in message or genre between fiction and non.
Analyze why fiction or non fiction similarities might have the national psyche’s
attention.
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Lesson Sixteen
Bits & Stuff
Gin clear waters spread on white powder sands at mangrove and palm’s edge.
Slow waves shimmer in warm reflections of futures that never stand still even in
paradises like this.
Caribbean Conference. We had just wrapped the course up and took a last lingering walk
down the beach. Time to leave. Probably never be here again. Yet again. This has
happened so many times. Publishing has taken me to so many places, over 70 countries in
all. So many arrivals and departures. Few had been as beautiful as this. How beautiful the
Caribbean Blue! Still there was no sadness in that going away. Endings are just doorways
to the next beginning. That’s how it is with publishing. There is always one more idea to get
excited about, one more book to sell, one more report to publish that will do someone good.
Here we are at the last lesson. This course is not at an end. Your publishing career is about
to begin. Good luck.
Here are a few bits and pieces that may help make it grow.
Small is Good
Buy the book, “Who Moved my Cheese”, by Spencer Johnson M.D. (That is, if you are not
one of the 30 million who have read it.) Note the number of short number of pages in the
book (94). Note the fluff. The book actually starts on page 21! Note the huge type and
space between lines. Note the 16 silly line drawings included to take up space. Note the
empty pages and all the white space at the top and bottom of pages. Most pages contain as
much as 1/3 to 1/2 white space.
This is a 24 page book streeeetched into 94 pages.
Now note the price ($19.95 or $28.95 Canadian). Multiply this time 30,000,000. This book
is very small. The bank accounts of the publisher’s and writer behind this book are not!
Big ideas and few pages make money. Lots of pages sometimes just add to the cost.
Perceptions
How much will you pay for a book? How much will you pay for a report? How much
will you pay for a course? Use your own guidelines for personal buying of books
and reports to help you price those you write and publish.
One More Legal Thought
If you invent a thing, you need a patent. Getting one cannot really be accomplished without
legal help. This might cost thousands of dollars. A patent for an invention only runs for 17
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years, while a simply copyright now runs for the author's life PLUS 50 years! Copyrights
require no waiting period, no legal advice and cost virtually nothing.
Once you have published your book, it is yours. You own the copyright, in essence you hold
the patent. Most people work for years and years and don't always have much to show for
this. But an author, he works hard and well once. It lasts forever...but it isn't like other
forms of creation as there can be many, many copies of it out there with no more effort
from the author-creator.
For all details on copyright laws, how tos, etc. www.copyright.gov These pages contain
the following data (see below). Securing your own copyright can easily be done on line or
by calling 202 707 3000. There is also a government hotline: 202 707 9100. There is no
need to involve an attorney or hire someone else, just do it yourself. Also, please read
below data on Copyrights Secured Automatically upon Creation.
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What Is Copyright?
Who Can Claim Copyright
Copyright and National Origin of the Work
What Works Are Protected?
What Is Not Protected by Copyright?
How to Secure Copyright
Publication
Notice of Copyright
How Long Copyright Protection Endures
Transfer of Copyright Termination of Transfers
International Copyright Protection
Copyright Registration
Registration Procedure
Effective Date of Registration
Corrections and Amplifications of Existing Registrations
Mandatory Deposit for Works Published in the United States
Use of Mandatory Deposit to Satisfy Registration Requirements
Who May File an Application Form?
Application Forms
Fill-in Forms
Fees
Search of Copyright Office Records
For Further Information
HOW TO SECURE A COPYRIGHT (from www.copyright.gov )
Copyright Secured Automatically upon Creation
The way in which copyright protection is secured is frequently misunderstood. No publication or registration or
other action in the Copyright Office is required to secure copyright. (See following Note.) There are, however,
certain definite advantages to registration. See "Copyright Registration."
Copyright is secured automatically when the work is created, and a work is "created" when it is fixed in a
copy or phonorecord for the first time. "Copies" are material objects from which a work can be read or
visually perceived either directly or with the aid of a machine or device, such as books, manuscripts, sheet
music, film, videotape, or microfilm. "Phonorecords" are material objects embodying fixations of sounds
(excluding, by statutory definition, motion picture soundtracks), such as cassette tapes, CDs, or LPs. Thus,
for example, a song (the "work") can be fixed in sheet music (" copies") or in phonograph disks
(“phonorecords"), or both.
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Surviving Cash Spurts and Sudden Wealth
How much extra money would it take to make a difference in your life? Be careful with your
reply because your publishing can bring wealth in spurts and this can be dangerous.
We saw examples of this during the internet stock craze. Executives left proven fields to
begin bold new startups. Futures were unknown. Remuneration was more in stock options
than cash. These risk takers worked hard, often sixty hours a week, survived on low pay
and hit the financial big leagues when their firms went public.
Sounds great? Most investors dream of making a big hit. Beware! Experience suggests that
sudden financial success creates disaster as often as not.
Invertors all too often make one of two mistakes. The first mistake is to believe this is the
only time there will be such an influx of cash. This tightens the soul, so we can't enjoy the
process. We become afraid. Life becomes filled with the process of holding just on. There is
no joy in that so unhappiness sets in. If money doesn't make life better, what's the use?
The other mistake is to think that large chunks of cash will always come easily, without work
and a learning curve. Such thinking creates unrealistic lifestyles and work ethics that lead to
disaster. I first observed this ironic fact while living in England. A happy, financially
responsible middle class family won millions in the lottery. Just a few short years after
reaping this spurt of cash through supposed good luck, the husband and wife were
bankrupt, divorced and no longer speaking to their kids.
I have seen many examples of sudden chunks of income making people very unhappy. This
is why the riskiest time for a small business is not at the start, but at financial take off. The
proud owner of new found wealth, buys new cars, hires new staff, moves into bigger homes,
spends more, works less, and creates overhead and debt. If there is a single reversal, the
business is wiped out.
How much is a big hit anyway? One measure is a ten times increase in wealth. This normally
is enough to make a significant difference in a person's life. For someone with a thousand
dollars in the bank, $10,000 seems like a lot. The extra money can make a difference. For
someone who already has a million dollars, another million doesn't make such a significant
shift. Ten million does.
The reason spurts create problems is because they disrupt our discipline. Money is discipline
and our financial affairs have some form of economic routine, either self imposed or not.
If we have no money this is a discipline in itself. No ticket-no wash. We also have a set of
mental standards that says, I can afford this, but can't have that, etc. Spurts of wealth
demolish these standards. Suddenly we can have things we previously could not. We
become, once again, kids in the proverbial candy shop. So we have to reset our standards
and this is not always correctly done.
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Yet many people spend their entire lives trying to become and stay independently rich. If
succeeding in this process can ruin happiness, what can we do?
First realize that independent, permanent never-ending, fearless wealth is a
process, (not a state) of continually taking reasonable risks, making mistakes,
adding refinements, accepting lessons and starting actions that culminate in
getting it right. When success arrives there is a huge income (or capital) spurt.
When you hit it big time, understand that you can make huge wads of cash again. No
matter how old you are. No matter what your position. Remember (I am not making this
up) in Florida a man won the lottery. After years he was down to his last payment. He
bought another ticket and won again! What are the odds?
Impose discipline though. The next wad of cash might not just fall in your lap. You will
probably have to work for it. You will make some errors. You might lose a little along the
way as well. So be prudent. Be smart! Here is a simple formula if you don’t have one of
your own.
The formula begins by immediately spending ten percent of the new money on your dreams.
Buy the Porsche. Take the world cruise. Build the new eight bedroom house. Do whatever
you want that does not cost more than ten percent of your newfound wealth.
Second, give ten percent to a worthy charity. Take a little time, find a need in this world you
feel should be filled and truly give the ten percent away. Third, invest the remaining eighty
percent very conservatively.
Most important remember you make money. Money does not make you.
Finally be grateful every day, not for the lump of cash, but for all the important things in life
such as your incredible publishing career. This business really is fun.
Raising Money
The message below is typical of one I have received many times from my readers.
Gary,
Does anyone know of reliable sources of information about strategies to raise
money from individuals to start a company? I have scattered references to the
idea, but am looking for seasoned professionals or other reliable resources who
can provide in-depth information on the subject. Thank you for your help. JE.
You may want capital to start your business and wonder if you should raise some
money. I began my business by raising money aboard so have some experience in this
field. However let me begin by assuring you that this approach to business is no panacea. If
you bring in lenders or investors, you will add pressure to your business. This can be good
or bad.
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Rule #1 in raising money is to be professional. Investors that read your books and reports
can be just as informed as investors as anyone else. Plus you risk losing many of your legal
protections when you use your publications to induce readers to give money to you (or if
you are paid for raising money for others). There are many rules about what a publisher
can do without being deemed financial advisor-broker etc, so be very careful not to cross
the line. Get a securities lawyer to be sure.
However your readers are likely to trust you. There is power in the pen so your list of
readers does give you a money raising edge.
Before you indebt yourself or sell off part of your ownership and control, consider selling
future publications. I have seen many publishers offer lifetime services etc. You will see in
the case study on “Omni-Media Power” below which shows how I offered seven or eight
seminars in advance and raised over an extra $100,000 in 30 days.
If you do decide to raise money do it in an intelligent way. The knowledge of investors you
gain can be more important than the cash. You can broaden your horizons, contacts and
resources with the right investors. There are few ways to get to know people as well as
through a mutually shared business enterprise.
Life is an adventure and creating a publication and watching it work is one of its most
thrilling peaks.
Brooklyn Bomber
The true story of the Brooklyn Boomer shows us how to take advantage of distortions to
obtain finance.
The Brooklyn Bomber was a young real estate developer who got into international fund
raising to save his neck. He was sharp, intelligent and successful and in the 70s he stumbled
onto an exciting real estate idea that was bringing him great profits.
Manhattan real estate prices were rising strongly. The bomber saw that young professionals
his age could no longer afford to live in the better parts of this exclusive island. He knew
they needed to be close to town for their profession, wanted lots of room to raise their
families and liked living in a nice setting with good architectural design and all the
conveniences of modern living.
He filled these needs by converting warehouses in Brooklyn into attractive and spacious
condominium living units. The idea worked very well. The warehouses were only short
blocks from very nice residential parts of Brooklyn and were capable of providing many
large living units. This man's business prospered and soon he started an even bigger project
and then another. He was doing really well.
Then the economy bombed the bomber. He was more than fully committed, over borrowed
and needed quick cash to keep his deal going. An oil shortage, a banking crash and really
high interest rates were on the verge of shutting him down.
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The Bomber was caught in a bind having already borrowed as much as he could based upon
his previous successes. His financing was all in short term construction loans that were
coming due, and he had to refinance at higher and higher rates.
High interest rates hit him doubly. First, his construction loan rates ruined cash flow and ate
potential profits. Even worse the high rates increased mortgage payments so young
professionals could no longer qualify for mortgages. His bankers were edgy.
At this stage this man consulted me about raising money from Europeans to tide him
through his cash crisis.
At his request, I flew to New York and rode with him to the apartments. They were
beautiful, so attractively designed that they had been featured in architectural magazines.
"Just the kind of place Europeans love" was my thought, "but how do we get quick
financing?"
Perhaps, I thought that it would be better to sell apartments to Europeans rather than ask
for loans!
Owning houses is something Europeans readily understand. They have confidence in owning
houses. Making loans and investing in equities are not so much their deals.
So we treated the apartments as the investment and placed small, classified ads in the
Netherlands, England and Germany.
Here is why. Interest rates on the dollar at that time were at all time highs. Plus the U.S.
dollar parity was at an all time low versus the British pound, German mark and Dutch
guilder. These Brooklyn condos, seemed really cheap, when converted into foreign currency!
We did not try to sell the condos by mail. The sole object of our first ads was to find Dutch,
German and English investors who were interested enough in investing in New York, that
they would come and look at the condos.
Our sales package was aimed at getting the investors to Brooklyn, not at selling the condos
direct. We wanted centers of influence. The marketing package included a copy of the
famous architectural magazine showing the condos as well as details about profit potential
of the property and the really low price in European/British currency terms. We kept a clear
message that we were offering an investment backed by property ownership and that we
wanted to meet the buyers and let them see for themselves.
The American buyers who had been buying from the Brooklyn Bomber were buying homes.
These Europeans were making an investment which was very different.
We designed a package so the Europeans could buy an apartment, and immediately lease it
to an American buyer - with a lease option.
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This helped the Americans who wanted a place to live but currently could not qualify for a
mortgage. They could immediately move into the house of their dreams and buy it later
when they had a larger income (or when interest rates fell).
The lease on the other hand created immediate income for the European investor and the
lease option sales price locked in a capital gain for the European.
The Europeans loved this because they earned income now, appreciation later and the entire
package was secured by the real estate itself.
This was a win - win deal all made possible by distortions of currency fluctuations. The weak
U.S. dollar made this property seem really cheap to Europeans. Yet the weak dollar pushed
up oil prices, and interest rates made the condos really expensive for Americans.
One more point can be gained from this Case Study. The developer's goal was to sell as
many apartments to European investors for cash as fast as he could while the distortion
remained. Yet we also set up a limited partnership designed for small investors who could
not afford to buy an entire apartment. The partnership took title to one condo at a time and
sold units of ownership for as little as U.S. $5,000.
This allowed Europeans to own a part of condo and gave the developer investment packages
to sell for all ranges of investors. He sold the apartments for $125,000 to $250,000 to single
investors, but with his deal could offer a $5,000 investment.
By taking advantage of this distortion this Brooklyn developer did not bomb out! This gave
the Brooklyn Bomber a plan to salvage his tight position then, but also gave him much,
much more. Once he had developed a group of real estate investors in Europe he had an
entirely new source of financing for the future. As interest rates fell and the leasers began to
exercise their options, his European investors saw profits and had extra cash. By developing
good will with these investors he maintained a steady source of equity finance that allowed
him to outgun other developers in the area.
This led the developer into an international business with an overseas sales company. He
learned how to use the Circle of 100. He paid this sales company generous commissions and
built an asset protected cash reserve aboard.
This is a wonderful case where the solution to a short-term problem (that could have
bankrupted the developer) created a reliable long-term source of finance, solved his current
problem and remained so he could also use it in the future.
He gained a source of money in many currencies and often at competitive interest rates.
This source of money was available in good times AND bad, when other developers could
not get money at all!
He gained an overseas company with 50% non-U.S. owners so he reduced U.S. tax liability.
The assets in this overseas company were also protected from lawsuits and litigation.
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This system worked well, but I missed a huge opportunity because I did not at
that time understand the power of publishing or omni media marketing.
When a similar opportunity recently arose with similar fundamentals, I published a report
instead of jumping into the business.
The opportunity arose unexpectedly at an International Business Made EZ course I was
conducting. Threads from several speakers entangled to create an excellent way of
enhancing wealth.
First, a tax lien guru spoke about the high, safe returns from these government, guaranteed
investments.
Then my tax attorney, Joe Cox, reviewed the enormous tax and asset protection benefits
gained from publishing, especially for readers out of the country where you live. (Joe’s email
address is [email protected]). He reviewed the last (fun) loophole and how owning your
own foreign business (even operated from home) makes more sense than ever. He
explained how this is the ultimate tax shelter. More importantly, he showed how it provides
freedom to choose where you live, work and earn. This loophole can wipe out taxes forever
and won't change because governments everywhere want local goods sold abroad.
Then as I was speaking on the enjoyable, horizon broadening power of traveling globally to
meet the wealthiest segment of other societies (rather than just traveling as a tourist) an
international business idea began to grow.
This was a perfect time for overseas investors to buy US tax liens. There were three reasons
why these appealed, they offered high returns (up to 25%), were very safe. (investors pay
their checks to the government and get their checks back from the government) and
interest rates for other safe, U.S. dollar investments were at record lows.
But rather than jump into the money raising business as I had with the Brooklyn Boomer, I
created and sold a report that essentially said:
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Learn how to buy tax liens (which counties to choose, how to check out the properties
in the counties and how to buy the liens at auction).
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Pick the country (or countries) where you want to visit and do business.
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Contact investors in the country you choose.
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Offer these investors a deal and charge a percentage of the profits they make for
selecting and buying the liens for them.
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Set the deal up so you never have to touch their money.
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Wait for the liens to get cleared.
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•
Collect a part of each lien that is paid. If the liens you buy for your investors average
15% return and if you get 25% of the deal you make $37,500 for each million dollars
you help investors invest….each year! At 25% return the income rises to $62,500 per
annum.
This report suggested selling this service through publishing! It suggests that
readers write reports about benefits of tax liens in the counties they choose. Then sell and
conduct seminars to the buyers of the reports and let all this activity lead to the users of the
actual service.
Sell reports not a financial service. Sell seminars not a financial service. Let all this lead to
the actual users of the service you are writing about. This is the way to raise money
through publishing and this is omni media marketing at its finest.
Omni-Media
One great way to succeed in publishing is to use an omni-media approach to business.
The 11 steps to successful publishing are: #1 Develop the idea, Step #2: Focus the idea,
#3: Focus the finance, Step #4: Focus the client, Step #5: Focus the market, Step #6:
Become an expert, Step #7: Lifestyle the product, Step #8: Develop data sources, Step
#9: Set a schedule, Step #10: Create back end business, Step #11: Set up silence.
Step ten, the creation of a back end business, can build an omni media business.
Let’s use a publication no less venerable than “National Geographic” as the model. In its
July 2004 issue this magazine offers its own other media products and services 27 times.
The onslaught begins at the top of the very front cover, with a pitch for the National
Geographic TV show. “Watch ‘Interpol Investigates’ NG Channel, Premiering July 6, 9 P.M.”
it says.
Inside, in a prime position, is another full page ad titled, “On Screen & Online.” This page
hawks nine NG TV and NG website URLs.
Later the magazine has another full page ad titled, “Invest in the World-Give the Gift that
Gives Back.” This ad is aimed at getting readers to make gifts to the magazine. Then
there are 24 other ads promoting their TV channel or website. Some of the ads titled “Get
More” are scattered through the magazine.
Imagine this, I have paid NG a subscription to let them hit me with 27 of their ads. Do I
mind? Not at all. The ads are tasteful, don’t get in the way and I like the NG editorial. I
want to know what other products and services they have.
This is the approach that brought such success to Ted Turner, Oprah Winfrey and Martha
Stewart (some of these may have legal problems or have screwed up through mergers, but
this does not reduce the fact that each joined the leagues of the world's richest through
omni media).
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Omni-media is refined merchandising that turns marketing expenses into profits. You begin
with a media base. For NG the media base is the magazine that funnels business to the
website and TV.
For Oprah, her television show is her media base. People watch this and she gets paid for it.
There she talks about books she has read on the show and people buy them from her.
These books are delivered and in them are ads for her magazine. Her magazine has ads for
her products and services including her TV show.
The TV show generates a never ending cycle of products that each lead to the sale of
another of her products.
Merri and I built our business in this way. Our media base was our newsletter. This
newsletter offered reports and courses and from this readers joined our International Club
and bought more reports and newsletters etc. We made millions despite our reader base
barely tipping 24,000.
Martha Stewart became one of the richest women in the world through omni-media. At one
of my seminars on publishing I pulled a Martha Stewart magazine apart and found 23 full
pages that sold Martha Stewart stuff. People paid Martha to read where to see Martha on
TV, where to hear Martha on radio, how to get Martha sheets at Kmart, how to use Martha
paint at Sherwin Williams and how to get Martha designer furniture at Bernhardt. There
were plenty of full-page ads selling Martha’s books on holiday cooking, decorating, etc.
The marthastewart.com website was referred to at least 100 times in that magazine! That
site has plenty of information and also plenty of Martha stuff for sale. This is omni media
merchandising. Because she had great products, a clear focus and the selling was tastefully
done, there was no offense.
The key to Omni media is to let products and services sell more products and
services, thus eliminating selling expense!
Here how I have turned this into a million dollar a year program for my small businesses.
I view my product creation and delivery system as a giant funnel and operate on the
premise that readers love my product. Some have a little money to spend. Others have a
lot. I want to sell at every price niche.
A perfect reader buys my book, “The 65th Octave” from a web search, at a bookstore or
from a referral. This is an order that cost me nothing in marketing terms. He or she likes
the story, sees my website address and logs in. From there he or she orders a $199 course
and is so enthralled with this, that he or she signs up for a seminar or course at $499.
While at that course he or she might buy other books and reports (maybe another hundred
dollars) and sign up for our International Club that lets a couple come to a year’s worth of
courses (for $1,995). While coming to these five courses the reader learns about our other
services and reports.
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This funnel only works perfectly as a never-ending dynamic money-making
machine if a certain condition is met. The reader must be satisfied with each product
and the way it is delivered. The system must operate tastefully and no product should ever
be sold in a hard or forceful way.
There are just two simple rules for omni media to work:
Rule #1: Give more than the reader expects. Be sure to make them genuinely happy.
Rule #2: Have the next product to sell.
Look back to the Case Study in Lesson Three which shows how Omni Media marketing
allowed me to turn $950 into an extra $112,000 in just 30 days.
There are numerous additional lessons we can learn from this study.
Lesson #1: Business problems create new products and greater success. The Club
became one of the most profitable parts of our business. We enhanced the service for our
delegates, and dramatically reduced customer cost yet increased our own revenues. All of
this came because we were looking for ways to solve a problem.
Lesson #2: A good product or service is your best sale tools. The Club would never
have worked had the delegates not been satisfied with the courses.
Lesson #3: Small, highly defined lists create big profits. Many businesses look for
bigger and bigger lists to mail. This is exactly the wrong view. The key to success is to find
small lists so good that you make huge profits with small selling expense.
If you choose to be a publisher of one product, this is fine you can still make a fortune, or
just have fun making a little. The choice is yours. However if you figure out who your
reader is and want to really increase profits, look for omni media opportunities.
Rule of Seven
Ever notice how many books have titles like the seven secrets of …? There is a reason. The
scientists call it Limited Channel Capacity (LLC). People’s reactions to selling messages and
publications are affected by a human frailty called "Limited Channel Capacity" (LCC).
LCC means our minds have the ability to discern only six or seven variations of any one
thing. This is the limitation of our channels of discrimination. A study on this tested the
human ability to discriminate sounds. The study showed that if a person is given a range of
low sounds they can very accurately discriminate between six or seven low tones. After six
or seven choices a person's ability to discriminate is dramatically reduced and confused. The
study group could not tell if more tones were higher and or lower.
Then the test was repeated with high tones. Again those tested were very accurate if the
range of tones was limited to six or seven. Beyond this number they lost their ability to
discriminate accurately.
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Here comes the interesting part.
When the study group was given a series of high and low tones mixed together you would
think they could discriminate six or seven high and six or seven low. Not true! The group
could still could only handle six or seven tones, even if some were high and others low,
before becoming confused.
This means that our capacity to discriminate is limited to just a few factors. This forces us to
paint people, events, situations etc. black or white, when reality is infinite shades of grey.
For example, if we see a wealthy person return a wallet he has found we judge him to be
honest. What we really know is that person is honest in that context. We do not possess
capacity to imagine and discriminate what that individual would do in a wide variety of
situations, so we paint them honest or dishonest. We might also judge a person who needed
$100 to save his baby daughter's life as dishonest if they kept a wallet found. That person
may have interpreted the wallet as a gift from God to save his daughter, but we would
define the answer to that person's prayer as a crime (no wonder the world often seems
screwed up).
This means we, as human beings, have a short range of discrimination but live in a universe
with a very broad range to discriminate.
So how does this affect our publishing and marketing?
First, this knowledge tells us that we may know ourselves and readers in our current
context, but we don't know who we or our readers will be or become or what we will do in
varying situations.
We can't even imagine.
For example, we cannot know how we or our readers will react when a rising stock market
collapses. Unless we have been through good markets and bad, we must beware of our own
understanding of ourselves! Taking it slow in areas where we lack experience makes sense.
This also warns us that we cannot predict very well how markets for readers (which are just
collections of individuals) will react as events of the world unfold. We get a slight blur of
infinite shades of possibility at best.
From a publishing point of view this knowledge helps us understand that opportunity will
shift as economic and social contexts change. For example, the morality of U.S. business
today is different today because of the context of our nation's leadership in recent years.
By understanding the power of context and the limits in our ability to measure our and
others reactions to changes in context, we can know ourselves more honestly. This is the
first step to understanding our reader.
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One thing we can understand is that if we offer less than seven choices the reader’s capacity
is partially filled with other thoughts and motives. Seven gets the reader’s full attention.
Yet if we give more than seven, we overwhelm the reader.
Thus seven is a magic number. Use it!
Health Trend
We looked in earlier lessons about the power of spotting trends and introduced the growing
trend for care. I have jumped into this trend using the Golden Rule.
In 1968, I jumped on the leading edge of the investing community and began predicting
that investments outside the United States made sense. The idea could not have been
better. In the 70s our readers learned how to invest in places like Germany, Australia,
Switzerland and Japan.
Then the world changed and the Tigers (Hong Kong, Taiwan, Malaysia, Indonesia, Singapore
and South Korea) became the hot markets I wrote about. The 90s led investors into South
America.
I followed these trends and many of my reader investors who followed this path made
fortunes. I was very lucky to have spotted such a series of long term trends.
The luck came from hard work! I watched investment developments all over the world for
35 years and always asked, "What's next?" Having done this for such a long time, my sense
of when a market or market sector was ready to boom became somewhat sharpened.
This is why I became excited about the field of health.
Two articles in the USA Today confirmed what we already knew. Healthy eating and living is
now becoming more than a fad.
The first article, a front page feature, stated that Kraft Foods is making a big switch to
healthier foods and that every product it produces will be reviewed to meet Kraft's stricter
nutritional guidelines. Many foods will have fat reduced by one gram or two. Sugar will be
cut in many. Calorie reduction could be 5% to 10%. Portion size or count will be slimmed on
many single-serve products and vending machine packages.
The second article in the business section outlined why Kraft's actions may not be altruistic.
Kraft is forming a global advisory panel of nutritionists and other outsiders who over the
next year will change the way Kraft makes, packages and promotes its food because they
believe this is where growth will be.
McDonald's believes it too. They have an upcoming Happy Meal fruit test that may be just
the beginning. The test will give consumers an option to substitute 100% juice for soft
drinks. (Even in our weekly, MOUNTAIN TIMES newspaper up here in the High Country there
is an small ad offering A Health Choice at McDonald's!)
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Now, we all know that these big companies aren’t really making a difference in the quality of
the foods or are making their foods healthy. But the point is that this is a major trend, so
even these huge companies are trying to get on the bandwagon.
This is such a huge opportunity and as you have learned in this course, I have
already jumped on this band wagon some years ago when I added an entire new
focus in my publishing business.
I shifted from global investing and added international business nearly two decades ago.
Then about ten years ago I added our Global Health Secrets focus.
Good health and high energy are becoming more important than ever before! The health
care revolution huge and growing. Economist and author, Paul Zane Pilzer, in his best
selling book "The Wellness Revolution", reckons this will be bigger even than social shifting
technologies of the past two centuries such as the railroad, automobile, telephone,
television, airplane, personal computer and internet). He points out the huge health problem
in America and cites why the wellness industry will reach one billion consumers: the
population of Japan, the U.S. and Western Europe.
Reading this book shows that there are four main attributes that an industry must have to
become a universal social changing industry. These attributes are affordability, legs,
continual consumption and time saving qualities.
Technology must be able to create affordability and get the price low enough so everyone
can have the product. For example my first Data General computer was the size of a
refrigerator, had two disks the size of large pizzas, a processing capacity of 64K and cost
$75,000. Today computers with megabytes of processing and gigabytes of hard drive are
around for a few thousand bucks. If the price cannot fall, then a financing industry must
emerge to make the product buyable (such as with cars and single family homes).
A product has legs when its benefits are so great that consumers immediately want it once
they see others enjoying its benefits.
Products with continual consumption create other businesses when they are sold (this is
omni-marketing). Cars create gas stations and auto repair. Faxes, sell toners and ribbons.
Computers create programming and the Internet, T.V. an entire advertising industry, etc.
Finally every great social economic wave saved time-from the railway, to the car, airplane,
phone, T.V. to the computer.
Health care fits into all four of these categories. This industry is booming because
prices are beginning to drop. Health food used to be really expensive and only available at
health food stores. Now you can buy a broad range of vitamins, minerals, food supplements,
organic meat, milk and vegetables and soy products at the super market.
As for legs, look at any food or food supplements as an example. This is regular month in
month out business. Everyone wants to start and stay feeling and looking better! Good
health is not a one time fix.
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Third, feeling good creates an upward spiral. If a people lose weight and feel good they'll
want to exercise or vice versa, if they start to exercise they'll soon want supplements to lose
weight and increase performance. Every sale leads to another.
Finally, nothing takes up our time like feeling bad. Low energy saps our productivity. Missed
work and continual visits to the doctor ruin our ability to get things done. Nothing creates
better productivity than feeling good, having high energy and strength and living a long
time.
The industry is growing in two sectors, the natural and scientific. In the scientific field some
of the fast growing sectors are cosmetic plastic surgery, cosmetic dermatology (such as
botox) voluntary eye surgery, (such as lasik, etc.), genetic engineering (sex selection and
fertility enhancement), cosmetic and reconstructive dentistry, and voluntary
pharmaceuticals (Viagra, Rogaine) etc.
Looking back at Lesson 12 we can guess that a lot of the scientific progress comes from
growth in products marketed to Moderns.
We can see that the natural industry (which is the place Merri and I fit) including alternate
health care and nutritional education, food supplements, vitamins and minerals,
preventative medicine, wellness health insurance, fitness clubs, trainers, coaches, fitness
equipment, health foods, health food restaurants and weight loss products reach out well to
Cultural Creatives.
Often the proponents of these two sectors are at odds, but even so each sector is huge and
growing and already represents 200 billion a year in sales (half the sale of automobiles).
Merri's and my business are a testimony to this fact. Feeling the time we included this trend
in our focus our health products, courses and tours have grown to outsell our investment
and business publications!
Congratulations
You are now informed!
word, Informed can be.
how to make known; to
permeate with manifest
When this course began we looked at what a powerhouse this
You now know how to give or impart knowledge. You now know
give evident substance, character or distinction; to pervade or
effect. You now know how to Illuminate, inspire and instruct.
Wow! You can do this? What a privilege and honor. What a responsibility.
Welcome to such sacred and hallowed ranks. Welcome to the world of publishing. Merri and
I send you our best wishes for a most enjoyable and successful publishing career in any
focus you choose. It has been my honor and privilege to serve you with this information.
I leave you with a list for further reading that can enhance the experience you will gain if
you now take the first step and began writing and publishing!
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Gary A. Scott
Little Horse Creek
North Carolina
Books and Recommended Reading
This list is by no means exhaustive, nor in any particular order, but a guide to some of the
books that have helped inform me. These books can help you gain a deeper insight into
many of the ideas and concepts presented at my web site...and some of the books that will
appear here are just "good books"!
www.copyright.gov This is the government site with all the information on copyrights,
fees, etc. What is a copyright, who is protected, how to copyright worldwide, how to secure
automatically, general principles, etc.
The Cultural Creatives, Paul H. Ray PH.D.and Sherry Ruth Anderson PH.D. Dr. Ray ran a
company called American LIVES Inc. for 13 years. During that time he accumulated over
100,000 responses to questionnaires and hundreds of focus groups. This book tells about
26% of the adult population and how they act.
On Writing, A Memoir of the Craft by Stephen King. This is a way out, hard hitting kind
of book that all of us writers need to know.
The Elements of Style by William Strunk Jr. and E.B.White. Stephen King writes that
every aspiring writer should read this book. It has been a bible to Merri since her career
began.
Chaos by James Gleick. An excellent book that ties economics into all other realities.
The Dream Society by Rolf Jensen. This book shows seven growing markets and the era
ahead.
The Tipping Point and Blink by Malcolm Gladwell. These books show how to make your
business spread like a virus.
Peterman Rides Again by John Peterman. This is a perfect story of great success that led
to bankruptcy. Good business sense is here and warnings about spurts.
The Millionaire Next Door by Thomas Stanley and William Danko, Andrews McMell. This
book shows how to never go broke....the habits of the wealthy.
Don’t Shoot the Dog by Karen Pryor. Good information on how to condition your readers
written by an animal trainer. Starts on how to train dogs and ends up showing how to get
along with all.
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Show Don’t Tell by William Noble. Teachings about the sympathetic character striving for a
worthwhile goal.
The Wellness Revolution by Paul Zane Pilzer. Contains some good data about this huge
trend.
The 65th Octave by Gary A. Scott. (This is my plug for omni media marketing here!)
Plus here’s one final assignment. Successful writers and publishers must please three
groups-the reader, the publishing team and finally those pesky bankers. This final
assignment helps you create a business plan that unites your efforts in all three of these
fields.
Final Assignment
Review one more time your eleven step check list that you have outlined in earlier
chapters.
Step #1: Develop the idea .
Step #2: Focus the format.
Step #3: Focus the finance.
Step #4: Focus the client.
Step #5: Focus the market.
Step #6: Become an expert.
Step #7: Lifestyle the product.
Step #8: Develop data sources.
Step #9: Set a schedule.
Step #10: Create a back end business.
Step #11: Set up silence.
Finalize your business plan. You have focused the cost of product back in Lesson Seven.
For example I determined that my Flee Flea report would cost $4.30 per piece to print 100.
My initial risk was $430. If sold at $44 plus shipping I saw that I would gross $4,400 or and
earn $4,070 after paying for printing and binding costs.
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In this assignment calculate the cost of marketing. You have focused the format. Now list
the specific places and ways you will advertise your publication. List the cost of each.
You have calculated the cost of printing. Now calculate the cost of storage and delivery.
List any other costs.
List the income of your projected sales.
Calculate what will happen to income and profits if your sales are 10% -25% - 50% and
100% higher and lower than calculated.
Merri and I always double check our figures, double check our projections before we begin.
We use caution but are always ready to jump into any project where our hearts and passion
are. Remember that there are many surprises out there and with the use of the Internet
and e-book on demand printing, you can be ready to handle that deluge of orders that will
happen if you have postured yourself on the delightful wave of success.
About Gary Scott
Ted Nicholas, one of America's best selling self publishers and foremost entrepreneurs,
wrote of Gary Scott, "Gary Enjoys a worldwide reputation. He is an entrepreneur, author
and investment advisor extraordinaire. While today it is commonplace, Gary was the first
advisor over 30 years ago who recommended international diversification for the small
investor. At first, many thought he was crazy. Today, the establishment advisors are on the
bandwagon. Gary's investment tips have probably helped more investors get rich than any
advisor in the world!"
Gary began writing and speaking about international investing in 1968 when he moved from
the U.S. to Hong Kong. Then he moved to London and began a publishing business which
included two monthly newsletters on international investing and numerous investment
reports with readers exceeding 24,000 in 82 countries. He has written and self published 36
books, reports and courses on international investing and business.
Thousands have attended his International Investment & Business Courses which he
conducts around the globe. He has conducted courses over the last 20 years throughout the
U.S. as well as other international locations that include the Isle of Man, Vienna, Hungary,
Switzerland, London, Belize, Hong Kong, Edinburgh, Brussels, Amsterdam, Paris, Singapore,
Thailand, Manila, Jakarta, The Dominican Republic, Puerto Rico, The Bahamas, Vancouver,
Toronto and Ecuador.
He has appeared on numerous T.V. and radio shows and was heard weekly on the
syndicated radio program, Market Rap, broadcast by WEVD New York City for many years.
He was a monthly columnist for the New York based magazine, On Wall Street, one of the
largest circulation magazines for U.S. stockbrokers, The Global Guide, a newsletter
published by one of Canada's top portfolio managers. Today he is featured in many natural
health and alternate living magazines. He has also appeared in the federal court system as
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an expert witness regarding international economics. Gary is former director of Agora Inc.,
contributing editor to International Living and a founding governor of the Oxford Club.
Gary is a trustee of The Land of the Sun foundation, a publicly funded charity for
reforestation and encouragement of resettlement by rural people who have migrated to
become urban poor which has funded Andean water systems in Ecuador, built schools and is
currently building a healing center for the indigenous people.
Gary is also a prior of the Order of the Poor Knight’s of Christ, an ancient order commonly
known as The Knight’s Templar.
Gary's first novel, The 65th Octave, a spiritual economic adventure about 5 families trying
to dominate the world had appeared in book stores and at Amazon.com and can be ordered
at Gary's website www.garyascott.com
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