We’ve all seen them. Some of us have even tried a few of the products that they push. They’re infomercials. The most famous of the bunch are people like Kevin Trudeau and Matthew Lesko. Their products and name are synonymous with the infomercial industry. And their products are scams. We know it when we watch. Many know it even as they call and give out their credit card info to have the product sent out. So, if everyone knows that the product they are pushing is a scam, why do they still buy it? What do the likes of Kevin Trudeau and Matthew Lesko have that some of the less fortunate infomercial folks don’t? What can we learn from them to perform better at our own sales. (hopefully of a little less scam-like product)
- Pick your product wisely
- Learn to sell
- Be convincing
- Don’t back down
- Build on a good thing
Kevin and Matthew didn’t just “pick” a product. They found a product that they knew was on the top of the minds of millions around the country. Kevin, the alternative medicine topic and Matthew, the get rich quick on other peoples money topic. Both are very popular topics. Just look at how many health related spams you get every day.
Unless you plan on getting into a sub-niche of a sub-niche like 1947 mercury dimes, you need to pick a product that will be in a niche that you know something about. Knowing something about it is usually not enough. It also needs to be a niche that many people are interested in. The mating habits of the South African Gnat are probably not top of most peoples lists. But there are lots and lots of topics that are. You don’t need to, and probably shouldn’t, pick a niche that is extremely popular. Chances are there are affiliates and bloggers in that niche that are much better and more experienced at selling that niche than you are. Try to pick a product that has a fair amount of competition (shows it’s viability) but isn’t over used.
It may sound simple, but selling can be one of the hardest things that you will ever do. Some people are born with a “gift of gab” and are able to talk people into buying things. Some people are naturally good at calling their customers to action. And some people would have a hard time selling food to a starving man. There is still a chance however. You can learn to sell. It won’t come easily and it won’t come quick, but you can do it. You simply have to put yourself to the task and dedicate a lot of time to getting it down. As you learn, you’ll notice that your sales will pick up. Eventually, your sales pitches will be glistening slick with that snake oil that Kevin Trudeau and Matthew Lesko sold you.
Where do you learn to sell? That’s simple. You can take all the classes you want, but the most tried and true method is to observe your competitors (not copy) and learn by trial and error.
If you can’t convince people that what you’re selling is the be-all, end-all of widgets, you’re not going to sell it. You can have the best sales pitch and product in the world, but you won’t sell a one if you can’t convince your customers that they need that widget. Ever seen a kid with a Elmo? Take that Elmo away and see what happens. They need that Elmo. If they don’t get that Elmo, the world will end. Time will stand still and the sky will fall. You simply don’t understand how badly they need that Elmo.
Your job as the salesman(person) for your product is to make your customers believe they need your widget. If you can do that, you’ll have success like the infomercial folks.
If you buckle at the first sign of trouble, you’re not going to get anywhere. In fact, you’ll end up nowhere. That’s less than anywhere for those of you geographically challenged. And don’t bother looking up nowhere on Google maps. It’s like the black hole of wheres. If you’ve ever done a search on Kevin Trudeau, either researching one of his products or researching an article like the one I wrote earlier this month (Is Kevin Trudeau the Best Salesman of our Time?), one thing you’ll find is that Kevin has had more than his fair share of trouble. He’s been sued, banned, and slapped around by more acronyms than just about anyone else I know. He’s had the FCC, the FDA, and the DOC on him at one time or another. He’s had customers sue him. And guess what. You still see him on television doing infomercials. He doesn’t back down. And he’s a success because of it.
When you run into a roadblock to your success, do what you have to to get by it. You may get some bumps and bruises, but that’s normal on the road to success.
If you have success, you cannot sit back and enjoy it. While you do, someone else will become better at selling a similar product and you will find yourself slipping. Kevin Trudeau had several products like the Mega Memory book/tapes, and some billiards thing, but the one that really did it for him was the “Natural Cures ‘They’ don’t want you to know about.” it went big. Bestseller big. Kevin knew he had something here. It was a huge success. And he built on it.
Not only did Kevin build on it by releasing three more books in the “they don’t want you to know about” series (More Natural Cures, Weight Loss Cure, Debt Cures) but he also built a very profitable website around the health related ones and now has a newsletter for the debt cures book. He’s gone from a somewhat successful salesman selling memory books, to a mega salesman with a dynasty of products that will support him for the rest of his life.
When you have a success, no matter how big or small, stop and find at least one way to build on it. Another way to get more traffic, another widget to sell with the first, an accessory for the widget, anything that will increase the profitability of your success.
You can apply those principles to just about anything. Affiliates, bloggers, auctioneers, and anyone else that has a product to sell. If you get good enough at them, you can become a top tier person in your field. Regardless of how good your product really is.
Kevin Trudeau found a product that was in a very “wanted” niche. He learned how to sell his product and became very good at convincing people that his product was the one they needed. When he ran into roadblocks in his way, he turned them into speed bumps. And when he found that product that was a success, he ran with it, making an empire out of it.
Not everyone will end up like Kevin Trudeau. Some of you will be liked. 😉 But everyone can be successful if they put the time and effort into learning how. Don’t go out and buy some silly book thinking that it will give you instant success. Only 1% of success is instant. Those are bad odds. Work for the other 99% of success that was worked for. It’ll feel better when you get there.