People who are new to online business – or wanting to convert a physical business to an online business – are often overwhelmed by all the different materials from the “Internet Marketing Experts”. An exasperated plea I hear often from people who’ve been on the lists of Frank Kern, Andy Jenkins, Jeff Walker, Rich Schefren, etc (and we all know how they cross-promote each others stuff, as they talk about what good buddies they all are 🙂 ) is:
I’m trying to pick ONE educator, who can deliver an A-Z map for a successful online business, vs. continuous upsell. Help!
Well, IMC (Internet Marketing Center) used to do this – you would attend a weekend for $10,000 and you would come out with a website online and accepting payments. Now I think they’ve switched to some kind of business-in-a-box concept, but I don’t know much about it.
Mark Silver at Heart of Business also has some good products for getting your site up and going.
But then both have add-ons and other aspects/modules that you can purchase to develop various aspects of your business. Because, really, taking a business from an idea through to a completely successful business is a BIG task/process. Here are the steps:
1. Research your biz idea and make sure there is a market who WANTS your product/service. Then determine whether they have the money to SPEND on your product/service.
2. If yes, then get your website up. Have the design reflect the tone, spirit, energy of your biz. Present everything so that a 9 year old (literally) could navigate your site. Have a compelling freebie opt-in offer on your site. Make sure your site has a self-hosted blog.
3. Have an automated shopping cart and email marketing, newsletter system configured when you launch your site. You must be able to follow-up consistently and regularly with customers and opt-ins. Use 1shoppingcart if you are starting small. Use Infusionsoft if you are starting big. If unsure, you can always start with 1shoppingcart and then switch to Infusionsoft.
4. Use my guidelines from my previous blog post to drive free, organic search engine traffic to your site.
5. Continue to tweak, learn, experiment etc. to increase traffic, opt-ins and conversions.
So, if you want someone to do all that for you, in one easy-to-buy program for a couple grand – NOT gonna happen. It is a tremendous amount of work to do all the above, especially if you are writing the copy as well. And the only way to customize anything is to either do it yourself, or hire an individual consultant.
If you want someone who knows all the above and can just implement the project/biz (with your guidance/input) then you need to find someone who has done it all before, has extensive experience and already has a successful online biz – that ideally does NOT involve selling IM (Internet Marketing) stuff!
If you find a consultant who is willing to put their money where their mouth is, then they should be willing to negotiate a partial fee/partial commission on sales – that way you won’t be out too much $$ up front. If they don’t believe in your biz enough (or they’re not confident in their own abilities) to accept part commission, then you’d just be wasting your time with them anyway. Or, they may be willing to accept sliding scale payment until you’re generating more money, or, guarantee results in your business or money-back. There are many ways to work with a consultant where you ensure the fee is tied strongly to RESULTS.
I don’t work as a business coach, but when a friend of mine asked me to help her re-do her website, organize her biz properly and take it to the next level, I charged her $325/hour – BUT I guaranteed every penny. i.e. after a 2 hour meeting, when she implemented my advice, if it didn’t earn her at least $650, then I would refund the money (which never happened). 18 months later she had quintupled her revenues and tripled her list. If you just copy everything from her site, you’ll do well – they are all tested techniques.
My last thought is: If you think you CAN do EVERYTHING in a business-in-a-box format, and you think someone should, then why don’t you do it? And that could be your business.
UPDATE: Dec. 2014, see this is where you need to be careful with what you put out there into the Universe! Guess what I have spent the last 2 years working on intensively – after repeated requests from my readers? Yep, a business training program that takes you through EVERYTHING outlined above (plus more, like Social Media, product creation; courses, eBooks, printed books, audio courses, webinars, etc., crowdfunding, outsourcing and much more). Come on over and check it out…