Feb 19, 2006

3 Lessons I Learned...

Welcome to Flo's Biz & Fun

Today's article was written about Alexandria very first sale back in 2004, in 2005 she tweaked it for BETTER results. This example below will give You some VERY valuable lessons learned...

3 Lessons I Learned From Having My Very First Sale
by Alexandria K. Brown, "The E-zine Queen"

[*AUTHOR'S NOTE: This article was written about my very first sale back in 2004, and it got great feedback. I repeated this process in 2005 and tweaked it for even BETTER results (over $17K in sales), and I'll be sharing all the details, step by step, for you to model, at my March 2006 Online Success Blueprint Workshop!]

From past years of experience in selling information products online, I knew that December sales are generally always slow. So in December 2004, I decided to try something different -- have my very first sale.

I was always nervous in the past about having a sale. Would it diminish the value on my information in people's minds? Would it turn off my thousands of subscribers? Would the short-term cash flow be worth the risk? I didn't want any of my readers to start associating my website with Wal-Mart, having sales every other week, prices going up and down.

But something told me to try it... just once. Nothing could go wrong; it was just an experiment. So on Monday, Dec. 13, I sent out a special announcement to my e-zine list that said, "I've never done this before, but this week only, I'm giving 50% 0FF all of these eight great audio programs I've produced over the past 18 months. This is my gift to you, to thank you for being a Straight Shooter subscriber. Which ones do YOU want to grab today at 50% 0ff?"

I then listed all my audio programs' catchy titles, each linked to its own sales page.

That one mailing resulted in over 94 sales, and most of the orders were for multiple products.

My regular ezine issue came out that Thursday, and I mentioned the sale in that as well. That resulted in another 31 sales.

But here's the biggie...

When Friday morning arrived, I wasn't sure whether to send out one more email or not. I was concerned it would be too much and my subscribers may be ticked off. The sale ended at midnight, and I'd already sent two notices about it - should I send out one more reminder? My rational mind said no, these folks are aware of the deadline. But my instincts told me yes. So I did. One more solo mailing, very similar to the original, but with a big reminder that the sale expired at midnight Eastern (NY) time.

The result? An additional *116* sales *JUST* from that last reminder email! These are sales I would have never gotten unless I sent out that one last reminder. Unbelievable! And you wouldn't believe all the orders coming in just before the stroke of midnight. (I was thinking, "What are all these folks doing home on the Internet on a Friday night?" And then I remembered that *I* was sitting home on the Internet on a Friday night. : ))

I grossed over $11K from this event alone. (Not a bad experiment, yes?) Plus I gave many of my readers a chance to sample my audio information products at a lower price than usual. Ideally they'll realize how good my stuff is and purchase my higher priced products.

So here are three lessons I learned from this whole experience:

1. Don't be afraid to have a sale. But don't have them frequently, and have a REASON for the sale. For example, my reason was to thank my subscribers for staying on my list throughout 2004.

2. Don't be afraid to send out a few reminders. The key is to not overdo it. In the beginning, do less than you think your list will tolerate. As you get to know your readership and their preferences, and get them used to receiving more emails from you with special announcements, you can increase your mailings. (But remember, the reason my readers love to hear from me when I have something special to offer is because I give them so much great content every week, and I don't overload them with promotions.)

3. If you set any type of deadline, be prepared to get the most orders close to the deadline. I was surprised that I gave people five full days to take advantage of the sale, but many people didn't take action until the last minute - orders were piling in right up until midnight, and people were begging me to let them "slide in" after! Be strict with your deadlines though, or no one will take them seriously in the future.

Many of my internet marketing guru friends tell me not to share numbers with my readers, but I do anyway for a few reasons. One, to show you that this is very possible, and two, to show you that I have nothing to hide. I'll always share my secrets for success with my readers and clients -- there's plenty of money to go around for all of us.

Now, go plan your next sale!

© 2004-2006 Alexandria K. Brown

See Alexandria's Small Business Marketing Blog.

Online entrepreneur Alexandria K. Brown, "The E-zine Queen," publishes the award-winning 'Straight Shooter Marketing' weekly ezine with 18,000+ subscribers. If you're ready to jump-start your marketing, make more money, and have more fun in your small business, get your FREE tips now at www.EzineQueen.com

Have yourself a Super Sunday!

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