Archives for December 2010

Dec
17

Story Telling by a 6 Year Old… Amazing

I only WISH I could tell a story like this little girl.

Watch her actions, her movements, the way she changes her voice for the different characters in the story.

Absolutely a MUST WATCH:

The story of Jonah from Corinth Baptist Church on Vimeo.

Pay attention to her ability to tell a compelling story – we ALL need to learn from this little girl.

It doesn’t matter what your beliefs or religion is… that isn’t the point here.

Just watch it through to the end… you’ll see what I mean. After you’ve watched it, think about this: wouldn’t you want to hear another story by her? Of course you would. And if we could all tell a story like this, customers would flock to us!

Troy

Dec
17

Pre-done Marketing Plan and Calendar

We have added, reworked and improved the 2011 Cash Flow Calendar.

2011 Cash Flow Marketing Calendar

This is for you if you are looking for new, innovative and wacky marketing ideas for next year.

Some of them are written for you.

2011 Marketing Calendar, Marketing and promotional plan for small businesses.

Wacky marketing ideas galore! Over 1,200 marketing prompts, templates and blueprints

But every single day of the year has at least 3-5 different ideas you can use.

OVER 1,200 marketing ideas, article ideas, etc.

PERFECT for:

– marketing campaigns
– blog posts
– Facebook updates
– Twitter
– lead generation campaigns
– customer retention ideas
– customer reactivation campaigns
– wacky ways to stand out from the clutter
– direct mail ideas

…and many other ways you can use these.

Have a look for yourself…

http://www.cashflowcalendars.com/

Did I say…

Done.
For.
You.
Marketing.
Campaigns.

Thanks again.

Troy

Dec
16

My Tae Kwon Do Black Belt and the Zen of Success

Fellow Business-Builder,

My name is Troy, and I’m a junkie… a martial arts junkie.

In the past 11 years of my life, I have been involved in one form of martial arts or another. From the year of Karate I took in ’96 when living in Dallas… to the 5 years of Kickboxing and Muay Thai when back in Calgary.

Last Saturday, I passed my first Dan Black Belt test in Tae Kwon Do.

My first Black Belt at 42 years old… exactly 26 years older than the eldest of my co-testers. There were 8 of us testing, and everyone was 16 years and younger (two of them were 10…getting their black belt!).

Me and my daughters waiting for the 'òld guy' to finish the Black Belt Test

Me and my daughters waiting for the 'òld guy' to finish the Black Belt Test

There are sometimes fast track systems that get you the ‘same’ end result.

Some schools I have seen say you can get a Black Belt in a couple years. Intensive training they say is the key. The training part most definitely true. (you can also buy a Black Belt online for $40 without any testing, just saying)

But getting a Black Belt in 2 or 3 years is not similar to training just as hard, but taking 4 or 5 years of training to test for Black.

Some schools pride themselves in putting out as many Black Belts as they can, others pride themselves in putting out far fewer, but more disciplined. I have been in all 3 environments: The Karate school offered a 2 yr Black Belt option. The Muay Thai school rarely tested at all – in 5 yrs I only tested a few times.

Yu’s Tae Kwon Do where I train?

– 4.5 years of membership
– 3-5 days a week consistent training
– 10 individual tests for different belts
– over $6,500 invested in tuition, testing, sparring gear, uniforms and shoes

For the Black Belt test I just passed, I had to:

* Know intimately the 8 different Poomse (patterns) that signify the level of training you are at – each pattern has 18-22 or more moves

* Know 70+ Korean words

* Do a one-page written exam on my experiences in Tae Kwon Do and what the sport means and philosophies are

* Be able to perform the 30 different self defence moves, and the 8 different one-step sparring moves

* Break a 2″ brick with my hand (ouch)

* Do a flying side kick over the backs of 3 people squatting down and break a board at the other end (for a guy my size!)

I did it.

I loved it.

But I learned a LOT about success during my martial arts training.

It is as appropriate in business as it is in martial arts:

1. The #1 reason why people don’t succeed? Lack of commitment. It’s that simple. I saw lots of people come and go throughout the past 4 years… very, very few of them stuck around. Most tried it out for a month or two and moved on. And yet, Grand Master Yu, the owner of the Dojang I train at… is testing for his 9th degree Black Belt this week. It has taken him 4 decades to get this level. He was one of the referees at the 2008 Bejing Olympics and is highly respected in the World Tae Kwon Do Foundation. Now THAT is commitment. Much like the masters who share their wisdom here, Clayton Makepeace, Drayton Bird, Gary Bencivenga… collectively, their commitment to the craft of writing is well over a century! Master James Yu, Grand Master Yu’s son, and my main teacher, has won well over 100 medals in his celebrated career as a lifetime Tae Kwon Do expert. At 26 years of age, he has attained his 5th degree Black Belt, and has remained committed to the sport for almost his entire life. Again, serious commitment to a lifetime of learning.

2. Success is a solo act. Through thick and thin – injury and laziness – good times and bad, you have to show up and do what needs to be done. I have broken bones, pulled far more muscles, felt like crap but kept on going to class and working out. 75% of the time I train… I am the ONLY one who shows up for class (which is why I LOVE going during the lunch hours… it’s like private lessons as I’m the only one there!). You need to just know when a good job happened, without need for external validation from someone else saying “good job”.

3. It’s very much about the basics. Without absolute mastery of those, it is impossible to become more advanced. And yet most people won’t even give the basics a chance. They get bored, or anxious, or just lazy. They want to try something new, yet haven’t even come to a remote understanding of the most basic of lessons. It’s about doing the same thing 1,000 times, maybe 10,000 – only then does it start to truly feel natural. Let me repeat that because this is a BIG one that most people don’t get: it is IMPOSSIBLE to master the advanced techniques if you don’t master the basics first. You can try, but only end up with a giant mess that definitely isn’t advanced, nor is it even good enough to be considered basic.

4. Those who are more experienced DO deserve more respect than others. They have been where you are, failed far more times than you have, and have put in far more hours mastering their craft – they deserve respect from you, or you don’t deserve to play the game. There is a good reason colored belts bow to the Black Belts in martial arts.

5. When breaking the brick you have to be hitting through the bricknot at it. Go bigger than what you would think. When breaking 2 or 4 bricks, you don’t aim for breaking the top brick, you aim for breaking the bottom brick. Unless you hit it right where you want it, it won’t break. There was a little guy testing on Saturday, 10 years old and the physical size of a 7 yr old, who couldn’t break the board with his hand. He kept whacking that thing over 10 times. Finally, it broke. Sometimes it takes 10 good solid whacks at it to get scared or pissed off enough to break the damn thing.

6. It’s never too late. Look, if a 42 yr old, grey-haired guy like me can outshine all the young ones not committed enough to stick with their training long enough… what can you do? I have no plans on stopping, and will continue on through the more advanced levels of Black Belts, at least until my body screams at me ‘enough!’.

7. Learn to LOVE that adrenaline rush. Sometimes you get it from a great workout. Other times it is when you knock off your best sales letter yet. Get in tune with the feeling you get when in the ‘flow’ and constantly be on the lookout for opportunities to get that feeling back.

8. A Black Belt is NOT the end goal! I was amazed at how many people I talk to ask what I am going to do next, now that I have a Black Belt. As if I am supposed to stop and move on to something else. Sadly, half the kids testing for Black were quitting and going on to something else. Me? I see the Black Belt as one step in an ongoing experience. Next goal is second Dan Black Belt. Then third. Etc. Don’t quit after you reach a milestone – get moving faster!

I have been looking forward to writing this article for some time. Realizing it isn’t all about marketing and sales copy… but it is about reaching higher and higher and constantly pushing yourself to greater levels of success.

We have a New Year almost upon us… and there has never been a better time for you and I to think bigger and do more grandiose things in our lives or businesses.

Hoping my bumps, bruises and pulled muscles have a few things to share about reaching the next level of success.

I am not stopping here… I hope you aren’t either.

To your next level of success,

Troy

PS: I have just wrapped up the 2011 Cash Flow Calendar. This is the 4th year with this marketing plan gem. Stuck on what or how to market yourself? Not sure what to blog about? Need something funny to post as a Tweet or FB update? The 2011 Cash Flow Calendar is the perfect marketing plan for those who need new ideas and want help implementing them. PACKED with well over 1,200 marketing ideas to keep you busy for the next year. Have a look for yourself – the 2011 Cash Flow Calendar and Marketing Plan

PPS: This was originally written for Clayton Makepaces Total Package blog.

PPPS: Are you in Calgary? Near the south end of town? If you are interested in starting your new year off with a new, hot and fresh workout with me at Yus… let me know!

Dec
14

Cat poop coffee and Holy Crap cereal… wacky marketing that works

Sometimes you just have to look to the most unusual of places for interesting marketing ideas to help build your business.

A couple quick examples show why stories are so important to build into your marketing:

A young couple from Canada had developed a very healthy cereal with a combination of chia, hulled hemp seeds, buckwheat, apples, cranberries, raisins and cinnamon.

Who doesn’t need a good healthy start to the day… right?

Well… it sounds good in theory… but what they quickly found was that rational reasons to buy weren’t enough.

They originally called their cereal HapiFoods… not exactly a sexy sounding name… but they still sold 10 bags or so online the first day in business.

As soon as people started receiving and trying their cereal, they noticed a trend that changed everything.

“… people were calling and saying, ‘Holy crap, this is great'” said Corin Mullins, one of the founders. Brian, the other partner involved picked up on this and made a quick decision… “let’s change the name to Holy Crap for the summer and see what happens”.
“We put it online and the first day it was Holy Crap, I sold over 100 bags,” said Corin. “It was the exact same recipe.”


1,000% increase in sales with changing the name

So they are off to the races and were put on the Dragons Den show in Canada (same as the Sharks Den in the US). Their flavorful cereal was snapped up by one of the Dragons immediately, and their sales went through the roof:

The deal was the fastest struck in the history of Dragons’ Den, said producer Molly Duignan. “[Jim Treliving] hadn’t even finished sampling the product and he basically made an offer.”

Orders for the cereal have been rolling in, jumping from an average of 10 a day to 10 every minute.

Over 5,800 online orders have been placed since Dragons Den, said Corin Mullins. Demand has been so great that the Mullinses hired five new employees. They even had to turn down NBC’s Today Show as the demand would have crippled their ability to supply.

Lesson learned?

Change your name!!

If a product isn’t moving as well as it should – try a new, more exciting name. In this case their customers handed them the perfect name on a silver platter. Other times it isn’t quite so easy. Sometimes you should be testing new names and new niche marketing ideas for products that DO already sell well.

Never know when you’ll find a winner.

But a product name is no different than a headline – a good name can and will see substantially more products or services. An attendee at one of my workshops told me she renamed her massage service to a 61 Minute Vacation and her sales immediately went through the roof. Same service – new name – HUGE boost in sales.

Try it out and test a new name out for a month or two. Market it to new people and see what the demand is like. You never know when you will find a winner and see a 1,000% increase in sales with a simple re-branding.

How about some cat poop with your coffee?

Did you see the movie… the Bucket List with Jack Nicholson? Well, one of the to-do items on the list was a drink of Kopi Luwak coffee. Cat poop coffee is basically what it is – and it is a HOT seller (steaming hot? Kidding).

The Wild Cicvik in Thailand is where the ‘beans’ come from for this coffee and it is an extremely rare (and expensive) type of coffee.

The Cicvik eats a certain type of wild cherry, passes it through, and the seeds are pulled out of the remains and used as the basis for this coffee.

Dubbed the most expensive coffee in the world, it recently arrived in Calgary, where I live. The coffee shop selling it loves the media attention this new addition is getting. They are almost sold out of the $25 a cup delight… and the residual business they are gaining by this will help them pay their bills for months, maybe years to come.

Notice something though?

In both of these cases, they have an interesting story that people want to hear.

They find their most important story (or title… or headline).

They master their story.

They share their story.

Sometimes they have to try new names, headlines, promises or guarantees to find the signature story.

Other times they have to look outside for new, innovative or controversial products they can sell as part of their story mix.

Both work… and both are just as feasible for you and I.

A new year is almost upon us, and there has never been a better time to step up and try doing more things that position you differently, more controversial, or just more weird.

People LOVE a good story… and are willing to pay for it.

If people are lining up to pay $25 to drink Cat Poop coffee… don’t you think there might be some kind of product or service out there that you can add to your marketing mix and position yourself as THE business to watch?

Of course!

For the new year (and even your holiday promotions), try bundling your products differently with a unique new name, and try adding in something that bumps your price up, and gives your customers a GREAT story they can share with their friends and family.

Never know when it will be your next big winner!

To your success,

Troy White

PS: This was originally written for Clayton Makepeace‘s blog, which I write the Small Business Mastery column every Thursday

Dec
09

16 steps to a lead generation magnet (and one short cut)

Yet again, a simple four-hour project has returned major rewards in just a few weeks.

This simple strategy works in every possible industry and country imaginable.

It will boost your credibility.

You will experience an influx of high-quality prospects, which are typically ready to buy at higher prices.

It adds an immediate cash flow stream.

It builds your database.

And it will most definitely make you one of the most credible in your niche.

What is it?

The simple printed book.

Before you go running off complaining about how you have no time to write a book, hear me out. The type of book I am talking about will take a small amount of your time, and is easy to put together.

…My first experience in this world began six years ago. I met a gentleman named Steven E. at an event and first heard his idea of
co-authoring a book with him. All I had to do was contribute a single chapter in the book telling my story.

This was the second time he had done this, and this one was going to be their first best-seller.

It was an honor to have my name listed next to Dr. Wayne Dyer, Mark Victor Hanson, John Assaraf … even Lou Ferrigno of “Incredible Hulk” fame.

The book was compiled and printed in what seemed like record time. We did the Amazon campaign that got the Wake Up… Live The Life You Love book #1 in a number of categories and my new life as an author began.

============================
My next experience began on a call
with the legendary Ted Nicholas.
============================

I was fortunate to get the chance to work with him on a few projects and learned an incredible amount from a man that has sold billions using direct response marketing.

On one of our conference calls, someone asked Ted a question that caused him to hesitate. What he said next inspired me to create
my own book. Ted mentioned one thing that he credited with his success, yet said that he didn’t like to talk about it much.

To me … this was GOLD.

Something so powerful it was responsible for his success, yet he didn’t want to talk about it? I knew there was something big
here.

============================
So I hatched a plan for my own book …
and Entrepreneurial Spirits was born.
============================

Based on the conversation with Ted, I knew this was something other successful people had in common, and I was determined to
bring it out into print.

So I developed a series of 5 questions and started asking people I already knew.

Ted Nicholas agreed to be in the book.

Joe Sugarman agreed.

John Assaraf agreed.

Joe Vitale agreed.

It took on a life of its own and, next thing I knew, 52 successful people from all over the world had agreed to contribute to the book.

Entrepreneurial Spirits was compiled quickly and put in print in the matter of a couple months … and I continue to reap the rewards from that simple idea.

============================
a couple years ago … it happened again.
============================

I was asked to be in a book called Money Making Marketing For Canadian$. There was no hesitation at all … I knew how simple it was and how powerful it worked.

So I invested four, maybe five hours on my chapter and sent it in.

The book came out not long after.

Surprise surprise … I quickly landed a very nice five-figure consulting contract with someone who had never heard of me before reading my chapter in the book.

As he said … “You were in a book, so I just knew you must be the real deal”.

Once again, this tool has paid itself back to me many times over.

============================
And here’s how it can do the same for you …
============================

1. Pick the niche you want to be known in.

2. Decide if you want to have a book with complimentary
authors, or competitors (both methods work … the one I was just
in was all competitors in the book). Let’s say you are a
plumber. You could create a book with all plumbers … or a book
with a single plumber, a carpenter, a roofer, a painter, etc.
This method is easier to do (and to convince the other authors to
contribute).

3. Pick a sexy title for your book. Use the formulas given
here on The Total Package for headline creation … and find one
that could easily be used as a book title. Alternatively, go to
Amazon and look at the best-sellers in similar categories. Use
the same formula the best-sellers use in your own title.

4. Put together a pitch letter you can send to the
contributing authors you want.

5. Give them guidance on what questions to answer in their
chapter, or what format you want to stick with (stories about how
they got started, or about the best tips for their area of
expertise, or the dumbest things people do when they hire a
______). Each author gets a set number of words they can
contribute, along with a bio listing their contact information.

============================
if you want to fast track it…
join me in the next Entrepreneurial Spirits book, details at http://www.entrepreneurialspirits.com
============================

6. Make it really easy for them to write the chapter (show
yours as an example). Give them guidance and ideas. And give
them a solid deadline to have their chapter in by.

7. And get busy going after your dream authors. Once you have
gotten the ok from the number of authors you want (10-20 is
perfect, 53 in mine was too much … almost Chicken Soup like).

8. Make sure you keep in touch with them during the writing
phase and make sure they are committed to the deadline.

9. Send it to a professional editor and cover designer.

10. Make sure YOUR name is the most prominent one on the cover
and spine.

11. I would suggest printing your first book in the standard 6″
x 9″ format … it is easier for the printer and the cost per book
is less.

12. Don’t worry about making it perfect! You are going to use
print-on-demand, so you can always get more printed if you find
something that needs fixing. The best part with a print-on-demand
company is that they can do small runs of 50, or 500 … and you
don’t end up with a garage full of unsold books (which happens
95% of the time with authors).

13. Print extra copies for your contributing authors. If they
are paying you to be a part of the book, give them 20+ copies.

14. Create an affiliate program so that your contributing
authors can sell the book through your program, or they can sell
them direct, as long as they buy them from you at $X per copy.

15. Write your winning sales letter using the tips on my
blog.

16. Get busy promoting the book! Use it as a business card.
Mail it out to your clients and prospects. Use it as a bonus
with your product shipments. Do everything possible to get your
book to distributors, catalog houses, on Amazon, and in the hands
of other entrepreneurs who want to bonus your book with their
product shipments. (Book promotions are a whole other subject,
one that I can’t cover here … even needing an entire course
around the subject!)

This is a simplified version of the entire process … but it can be done quickly and efficiently using this formula.

============================
Don’t overcomplicate it …
this formula WORKS.

If you want to fast track it…
join me in the next Entrepreneurial Spirits book,
details at http://www.entrepreneurialspirits.com
============================

The books you now have are the PERFECT promotional tool.

They will enhance your image and will attract your perfect clients. A single chapter made me five figures in a month since its release … imagine what it will do over the next few years.

And don’t cheap out and go for strictly the e-book version.

I love e-books … especially selling them. But there is something different about a physical book that you cannot match with a PDF. If you start now, you can have this done for early in the New Year Entrepreneurial Spirits

I would love to hear your ideas.

Thanks again.

To your success,

Troy White

PS: If you want to fast track it…
join me in the next Entrepreneurial Spirits book,
details at http://www.entrepreneurialspirits.com

PPS: This is the ULTIMATE CHRISTMAS PRESENT for the entrepreneurs in your life! If you are giving it as a gift, let me know and I will package up something special for under the tree.

The Perfect Christmas Gift for Entrepreneurs

The Perfect Christmas Gift for Entrepreneurs