Ronald McDonald To Boost Starbucks Coffee Sales

Hey there,

as you may have heard, Starbucks aren’t doing so well these days, so they are going to hire Ronald McDonald clowns to entertain the crowds whilst waiting for their coffee in an attempt to get more customers into their stores. [source: itotallymadethatup.com]

ok, whilst that’s totally made up and you may be spared the sight of Ron in action for a wee while, the exact same thing is happening in a forum near you:

specifically the WSO section of the Warrior Forum. (which is representative of many other parallel Universes …)

If you look at the products being sold there, it’s gone from

“hey, here’s my stuff, if you want it, click here” (and I’ll pay my affiliates 50%) about 2 years ago

to

“hey, here’s my stuff, if you want it, click here” (and I’ll pay my affiliates 100%) about 1 year ago

 

to

“frig, I need to pull off a giant dog ‘n pony show and some serious Ronald McDonald clownery to even get someone to look at my offer and I have to give away 100% on the front-end, the back-end, and then pay 25% on top of that to even get someone to promote for me” round about now.

Current example: Brad Gosse & Anthony Aires’ traffic WSO:

100% off everything goes to affiliates, and they have to put on a giant show – in this case hours and hours of their time doing live webcasts in the WSO thread.

that’s hours and hours of their LIVES gone forever.

All in the name of doing a dog and pony show to get people to buy a $8.87 product of which Brad and Anthony will get NOTHING.

Yes, Brad and Anthony know what they’re doing, and they’ll make money on the back-back-end (the back-end itself is there to satisfy the affiliates)

Incidentally, I just want to make this 100% clear:

what I’m saying here relates to the *marketing* that’s required to shift low-ticket items on the WF, not the items themselves.

Meaning: I’m not saying anything about Brad’s and Anthony’s product, I’m just using their launch as a case-study (I could’ve equally well taken Enrique’s/Neil’s WPMobi launch, same principle, or any of the upcoming ‘big’ launches).

I guess what I’m trying to get across is this:

  1. this particular market (the WSO section of the WF) has been conditioned to respond to sub $10 offers so much, that you now have
    1. a very hard time selling anything over $10 (ask Bill Guthrie about his recent launch where he ‘dared’ to ask for $17 for a nice, high quality product that should really sell for $197), and
    2. almost no chance of selling anything unless you have a major dog and pony show and/or clowns going on.
  2. both buyers and sellers appear to overlook that it takes time (and hence money) to produce quality products:

All of this creates a big-time vicious circle:

buyers expect top quality products (which sellers cannot produce without charging for it appropriately), so sellers have to use dogs, ponys and  clowns to sell stuff they can cobble together quickly (Anthony and Brad on 2 six-hour live webcasts, that’s 12 man hours, plus they had someone in the background, that’s a LOT of time that could’ve been spent on creating a high-quality product! – however, chicken and egg, no point doing so because then you don’t have time for doggying, ponying and clowning around, so noone is going to buy your high quality product.

And of course, all the dog & pony circus acts attract clients who are, well, attracted by the dazzle, rather than real content that makes a real difference. Meaning: they’re even less likely to invest in higher quality content, and so the  cycle continues.

Let me wrap up with my take why I think this circus-train is heading for serious dead-end very fast:

in this particular market, the products that have to be produced on the cheap provide no real value beyond the ‘quick-fix’ buzz you get from the act of buying it … a bit like a nice cup of Starbucks coffee.

Wears off rather quickly, and off you go again to make another purchase.

Granted, there is value in that … in makes you feel good for a short period of time, but ultimately you don’t get the value you were seeking in the first place (like, oh, mhmm, grow your business, or get it started in the first place).

There’s a second factor at work here and that is this:

in the real world, traffic is always getting more expensive!

In the above example, 2 years ago you could make quite a few sales through the forum itself (you keep 100%), and ‘only’ give 50% to affiliates.

Then it got more expensive, you had to give away 100% on the front-end, then monetize it on the back-end.

Right now, we’re at the point where you monetize it on the back-back end, plus you have the ‘lost’ time (and hence income) due to having to put on the dog and pony show.

In other words: the real cost of traffic is ever increasing on the WF.

Meaning: in the long run, only those who can monetize the back-back end, will make money, everyone else will lose money (and often not even notice it because they put it down as “it’s part of lead-gen”) or simply leave the WF and look for a different traffic source.

Now, once again, this is not a ‘wagging finger raised in the air’ or pointing at anyone or any forum, it’s just an example of what’s going on in the real world:

if traffic is profitable, more and more people will jump on it, and the more people jump on it, the more expensive it will get.

Google Adwords used to be dirt cheap and you could make a campaign profitable in a few short days or weeks, now you’re more likely looking at months of optimization until you finally break even … that’s how expensive that traffic source has become.

Meaning: whichever traffic source you jump on, no matter how big the ‘loop-hole’, eventually that loop-hole will be discovered by enough people to drive most competitors out of that traffic source, simply because it’s no  longer profitable.

Just a crazy thought then:

maybe the secret to making money online is NOT to find loopholes and super-cheap traffic sources, but maybe, just maybe it’s actually knowing how to build profitable sales-funnels that

  • make a profit no matter how expensive the traffic is (read: it’s always a tiny bit better than the other guys in the market), and
  • are designed in such a way that you can actually spend time on creating quality products, rather than doing the dog, pony, clown dance just to give people their next quick fix.

Then again, I might be wrong….

Veit

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Comments

  1. From what I can see Veit, the back-back end for many of the ‘clowns’ 🙂 who market at WF is to carry their hot selling product over to Clickbank and 4-8 x the price and hopefully attract lots of affiliates on the strength of the testimonials.

    I’m amazed how many WF titles end up there… Also am amazed that the marketers rarely view WF buyers for any upsale beyond the front end WSO and the OTO.

    I almost never get invited to look at anything these guys do post WSO until the next WSO comes along…

    • Hey Scott,

      well, from personal experience I can tell you that the overall response to higher-end offers is rather, well, mhmm, how to put this … “less than stellar” when you’ve got a ‘core WF’ crowd.

      There’s a rather strong ‘magic bullet’ thing going on, so the moment you come up with something that actually involves work and goes back to the fundamentals, then it’s “uhm, ahhh, ah well, …”.

      Now, you can look at this from 2 perspectives:

      – either you figure out how to monetize that back-back-end properly with a core WF crowd (and when I say “monetize” I mean: provide the right kind of value so your clients’ needs are met, but you also have enough time and cash to create the high value offerings that make it worth your while)
      – or you simply accept that there’s a never-ending stream of newbies, and you can happily ‘burn out’ your list, because it’s so easy to fill it up again with fresh blood – a model I personally can’t bring myself to do, which is I guess why personally I fall into the 3rd category, namely those who are gradually leaving the WF.

  2. Yep – building profitable sales funnels is what the gooorooos do. They have their entry level products to entice buyers, then come the upsells for big money couses and coaching programmes.

    Many of them are pretty much out of Internet Marketing now – they make money coaching clients. I only know of a few guys who are continuously big in IM. These will stay, as they and their products have a very good and long standing reputation in the market – Eben Pagan comes to mind.

    In the offline world, most businesses don’t even think of having a ‘loss leader’.

    The Warrior Forum and especially the WSO section has developed towards a certain reputation too – in blackhat forums, most of them are called B.S.Os.

    Newbies find a lot of shiny objects there, but no real fundamentals on how to develop a business online. It’s like it was with lots of Clickbank products in the IM/BizOpp niche a while ago – one push button solution (aka shiny object) after another.

    I’m looking at the WSO section as a toolbox now and only look for concepts (services i can provide to customers) and tools (software) that can help me in my choosen business area.
    This makes it hard to sell me anything else.

    If the commission rules and back-end monetization strategies really went in this direction, I feel there is now a saturation going on in the IM niche – at least in the WSO section. Either the number of newbies goes down there or the number of marketers raises there – or both.

    Cheers, Alex

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