3 Nov
2012

Tube Probe’s Gentle Seduction to their Mailing LIst

During the purchase sequence for Tube Probe (haven’t had a chance to review it) came this enticement to join their mailing list:
Picture of squeeze page used by Tube Probe to get you to sign up for their mailing listTube Probe takes a couple of shots at getting you on their mailing list during the buying process. None of them is out of place or annoying. I like this one because it combines the carrot (get two video backgrounds free) with a nicely balanced stick “No, Thank You. I’m Not Interested in FREE BONUS or LIFETIME UPDATES”.

Nothing technically impressive or new here,  just a good example of using a standard squeeze page in a slightly unusual place. Good move, Tube Probe peeps.

19 Jul
2012

FirstPLR.com Review With Free Sample-Resale Rights on Steroids


The best PLR (aka private label rights, or material you can rebrand or even rewrite and edit as if it were your own) content has a heavy burden, one that Daniel Flowers’ FirstPLR (affiliate link, or www.firstplr.com without the affiliate link) meets. A good PLR content site must simultaneously offer:

  • Something so good you’d pay for it as a standalone product
  • Doesn’t look like it comes from a PLR content site
  • Private label rights not just for the ebook or video, but for a sales page too
  • A full resell right product that includes the word processor source, clear, generous, and easily understandable license
  • Photoshop source code to images used on the sales page

Picture of FirstPLR.com member areaFirstPLR.com meets those requirements and more, because they generate a new product every month. It is consistently good, offering well-targeted PLR products, mostly for the internet marketing niche, at just $17/month.  The writing is always good and if you were given one of their products as a bonus along with something else you’d be happy. In most cases, novice IMers who paid a nominal $7 or $17  would not go away disappointed.

So far I’ve seen nothing that just knocked my socks off as an experienced marketer, but at $17 I feel I’m getting my money’s worth every time.

I didn’t realize until I spent less than 5 minutes customizing Ghostwriting Gold how relieved I was that FirstPLR‘s products are so easy to customize. While I have a pretty long list I use to evaluate PLR, it wasn’t until writing this review that I understood what a boon it is. Because it’s simple and not overly customized, I was able to:

  1. Copy and paste the resource page from one of my books into the end of Freelance Firestorm
  2. Do a search and replace on the name (only 2 occurrences in the source document, which shows careful planning on the part of FirstPLR
  3. Load the book image file into Photoshop and change the name
  4. Export the image as a PNG
  5. Copy the PNG image into the front of the book
  6. Export as PDF

It was a matter of about 20 minutes.

What you get

Each month you get a new IM product with, at mininum:

  • A PDF you could distribute as is if you didn’t want to crack open a word processor
  • The Microsoft Word and LibreOffice source to the ebook
  • An complete HTML sales page website
  • Photoshop PSD files for images used on the sales page

What I like about FirstPLR.com:

  • You can be secure knowing you’ll have a reliable source of new material every month
  • They’re consistently good
  • Material is well written
  • Sales pages are good and could easily be recycled for your other products, as good the Photoshop files
  • Site contains previous products in the archive at no extra cost
  • FirstPLR gives you the kind of product you would want, as opposed to what a more selfish PLR publisher would like to sneak past you. Unlike many such products, there are no affiliate links to Daniel Flowers’ own sites contained within the product itself, so you don’t have to worry about spreading around someone else’s affiliate links when distributing the finished PDF as is.

Dislikes

  • As each month’s distribution comes out they send you your login information: user name and password both. In 1999 I would have called this good service, and in fact I like the thought behind it. But it’s not 1999, and that means better security than storing passwords in plain text and emailing them without being asked.

Secret I probably shouldn’t reveal

I  always do a quick Google search for random text from any PLR material I get. If it shows up on 109 sites then I know it may be a little played and not the kind of premium bonus I want for a high-end product. So far FirstPLR.com’s ebooks, while very good, aren’t too widely distributed. Good for you and me, maybe less good for Daniel Flowers!

Intended audience

This is a product for intermediate internet marketers who need a steady source of good bonuses, or for determined beginners who want to sell an information product but who haven’t yet written one of their own.

Get Your Free Sample Here!

Here’s an example of Freelance Firestorm (500K PDF), which I adapted from Ghostwriting Gold, a FirstPLR release.

Recommendation

I strongly recommend the FirstPLR‘s monthly membership.  For $17 you get the peace of mind that you’ll always have very strong bonus material at worst, and a possible new product with minimal work at best. It ranks among the best PLR content sites, it is one one of the resell rights product memberships to beat.

 

16 Jul
2012

Simple Viral Profits Review

By  
Simple Viral Products (at http://www.warriorforum.com/warrior-special-offers-forum/636456-simple-viral-profits-live-1000-sales-under-2-hours.html) shows you how to find a hot market, create a viral Facebook page for it, find matching CPA offers, and gently but firmly push your viral traffic to those viral offers. It’s in the form of a very PDF but most of the of the material comes from videos it links to. The videos do they job but they’re often fuzzy, making some page details hard to follow. This course offers huge value for the money.

The first bonus is a video stepping through an entire day’s work (but only takes 20 minutes of your time). It’s worth thrice what you pay for the course itself because it shows precisely how Don chooses offers, decides what to post and when, and mentions automation and outsourcing opportunities where appropriate. He makes $500 simply by posting 2 offers in among the dozen or so fun postings.

Sorry, BTW

I’d have a more comprehensive review ready but WordPress, for the first time in the years that I’ve used it, ate my good one. So just the highlights:

Likes

  • He knows his stuff and demonstrates every aspect of it
  • Little tech knowledge is allowed
  • He gives away a working site, probably trashing that particular opportunity for himself but offering you phenomenal value in the process

Dislikes

  • Videos are sometimes fuzzy
  • I’d like more step by step material in the PDFs, but at that price… I’ll live!

Secret I probably shouldn’t reveal

Sure, he mentions great success in monetizing Call of Duty and Modern Warfare Facebook pages, though he doesn’t give their URLs. (Still, cool! He gets paid to… post on FB and like video games!) He does show you the behind the scenes activity on an actual Facebook page. It’s about… wait for it.. pit bulls. It’s a page that has 552,000 Likes when the bonus #1 video was shot, and that video gives away just how and when he posts offers (along with noncommercial material). Stellar. Want to see the page? It’s a walking IM education all of itself. Sorry, Don, but here it is:  https://www.facebook.com/pages/Pit-Bulls/359049540797534

Intended audience

Internet marketers willing to put in some time building a Facebook page. No tech knowledge required

Recommendation

This course is not polished, but it gets right to the point and seems to give away loads of hard-won knowledge. Highly recommended.

7 May
2012

Payment Protect Review

By 

Payment Protect by the reliably excellent John S. Rhodes and Jay Boyer addresses one of the worst nightmares of a successful online marketer: success, because on occasion PayPal will shut down your account and seize your money without warning.  I gotta defend PayPal here, by the way. I’d slap you too. What, you ask? Explain again why PayPal should be able to stop me from making money for them? Hold your horses. Take a look at it from their point of view. Let’s try some thought experiments.

 

Would you fire you if you were PayPal?

Imagine PayPal doesn’t exist and you decide to invent an online payment site called ICanHazPay.com that lets people sell products or services online, and to transfer money between accounts with just an email. All they have to do is give you a little personal information and online access to a checking account. Awesome! Revolutionary! Convenient! It was worth youReview of Payment Protectr begging the banks, credit card companies, federal government, and nervous state legislatures to allow you to operate something that looks like a bank, walks like a bank, and quacks like a bank, but isn’t a bank. Now people start using your amazing service to sell ebooks online. Splendid! Let’s look at a few scenarios. In Scenario 1, most customers love the ebooks for sale and there aren’t too many refund requests. No prob. In Scenario 2, an ebook is fabulously unbelievably spectacularly good, so someone steals it, sells it, sells 500 copies at $apiece, then immediately withdraws the $25,000 and is never heard from again. The original author contacts you, but ICanHazPay.com is out the $25,000. The credit card companies you’re dealing with expect you to pay them back if you want to maintain your merchant account. Or how about Scenario 3. Some loser promises the moon in his ebook, sells a boatload of them, and doesn’t deliver it. Or delivers it, and it sucks. Refunds go through the roof. Or Scenario 4: said loser comes out with a good book that delivers, but follows it up with a lame-ass book out of pure greed. Customers are up in arms.

How does PayPal manage its own Payment Protection?

How do you good people at ICanHazPay.com police any of these situations? The businesses involved are all virtual. They don’t have an address where marshalls can go knock down doors and retrieve sacks of unspent cash moldering in vast Scrooge McDuck safes. Marshalls don’t really have a good grasp of fraudulent ebook cases anyway even in the event that your bad guys have been kind enough to stuff pillowcases of ill-gotten money in those safes, have admitted to screwing you, and have even published the address and room location of your money. Short-term digital fraud is impossible to police, so PayPal doesn’t bother. It is much better for them simply to shut down an account, freeze its assets (you agreed to this possibility when you signed up) and put the seller on the defensive. You have to prove your innocence. Jay Boyer is by all appearances a good guy. I have bought many of his products. They are all very good. Yet even his PayPal account was shut down recently. Suddenly a monthly $20,000 gross was shut off just like that. Jay did something many in his position have been unable to do: he fought back,  restored his reputation with PayPal, and even went public with this very painful experience. He used a combination of legal, diplomatic, and personal techniques to make this happen. His story is detailed in Payment Protect. Hang on, though. There’s one more scenario we haven’t covered in our mythical ICanHazPay story.

What about planning your Payment Protection ahead and avoiding the situation to begin with

How about Scenario 6: PayPal knows you. They see you follow certain longstanding business practices  reputable firms adhere too. You come out with a hot-selling info product, there’s a flood of cash into your PayPal account, so they immediately… Leave you alone, because you’ve proven  to them you know how to run a business and you’ve prepared PayPal for the event. They trust you, because you know how to operate in a trustworthy fashion. One thing I like about Payment Protection is that they give actionable, detailed steps on how to avoid this whole mess to begin with. I have used PayPal for over $11 million in payments over the last 12 years with never a shutdown, and it turns out I instinctively followed many of the same principle Jay Boyer details in this excellent product. So it rewards not just the unprepared, but the careful as well.

How do they deliver the goods?

Payment Protection consists of:

  1. The letter Jay Boyer’s attorney wrote to reverse the situation, using some surprising and clever legal thinking, and the exact email addresses it was sent to
  2. Boyer’s very effective letter used information unique to Wisconsin. So there are 50 letters included, customized for each state–write down to the exact name addresses to which you would send your complaint letters. Amazing.
  3. A downloadable 81MB video which, sadly, does not have a transcript
  4. The PowerPoint slide deck that video is based on (I opened it successfully in the totally free LibreOffice Impress). I don’t know why they don’t have it in PDF form too.
  5. An amazingly detailed book on PayPal and the law by Boyer’s father, Neil Boyer, the attorney who helped Jay out of his mess to begin with. I have only skimmed it and do not know how much practical use it has, but it’s the kind of legal treatise that would normally be prohibitively expensive to have written fro you

Then there are bonuses (all of this for $7, mind you). They are ebooks covering

  • 15 Things to Do if Your Account is Limited
  • 18 Rules to Keeping Your Accounts Safe
  • PayPal Acceptable Use Policy
  • How to Set Up Your Paypal Account
  • How to Create a “Buy Now” Button
  • How to Create and Manage Invoices
  • How to Create Reports
I’m not sure the “How to Create Reports” one rises beyond filler. Reports are pretty easy to do in PayPal. The rest are all solid. Things like “How to create a Buy Now Button” are nice to have as clear, standalone reports, because PayPal buries them in its massive library of documentation.
Along with the books are additional bonuses (boni?):
  • 2 WordPress plugins for generating PayPal buttons

Oh, and the nuclear option?

None of this guarantees you can restore a PayPal account. I sincerely believe it is by far the most complete training available for that possibility, and thought it was worth way more than the measly $7 I paid for it. There are other fish in the C, and they have a Plan Bproduct showing alternative payment processors. Haven’t had the chance to read it yet, but there you go. I have Bank of America as my alternate payment processor,so it’s not an urgent matter for me yet. Plus, I only got Payment Protect an hour and a half ago!

How can you use PayPal’s protection techniques to your advantage?

What I like about Payment Protectis that Jay Boyer lays out

  • Reasons PayPal can shut you down
  • What to do in the event that they do, right down to template letters and exact phone numbers (ever try to get a PayPal phone number to someone responsible?)
  • How to prevent this disaster through very, very simple-to-implement actions that will make it far more likely that PayPal brings you into their circle of trust

If your account is shut down, you have what looks to be a brilliantly written letter that hits PayPal in its most vulnerable areas. It’s not just an empty threat. Not only that, you have a letter for your own state if you live in the USA. That rocks.

What I liked about Payment Protect

This is a category-beater in the increasingly crowded protect-your-PayPal account info product market.

  • You get the full copy-and-paste text of a letter you can use as is and exact email addresses at PayPal to send it to
  • They also cover prevention
  • All bonus products are relevant and of at least decent, often excellent, quality
  • Price is miniscule

Shortcomings

This product way exceeded my expectations. It was hard to come up with a convincing list of shortcomings; at $7 for a product of this magnitude and quality, they are trivial at best

  • The slide deck should be distributed in PDF form
  • The PayPal Terms of Service and How to Create a Report ebooks don’t add a heap o’ value
  • No transcript of the video

Payment Protection is ridiculously inexpensive. It is nowhere near the cost of most business books, yet it deals with a very real problem with clear, actionable steps in a way that could literally save your online reputation, your income stream, and your business.

3 May
2012

Product eClass Review: The Class So Nice, I Took It Twice!

By

Jason Fladlien’s Product eClass is an online course about, well, how to make online products that sell. It makes some bold claims, namely that with just some ambition (not even too much!), a bit of focus, and desire:

  • You can create a product that sells in under 2 hours
  • Bigger isn’t better. It should provide 1 solution to 1 problems and you should create it in 1 sitting
  • If you give yourself too much time, you simply will not complete your product
  • You don’t need “social proof” to sell an information  product on the Net
  • You don’t need good marketing to sell a product

Product eClass is presented as a membership site with a series of videos, but it also comes with very complete transcripts and a number of bonuses as well. Jason Fladlien is perhaps the most qualified person in the world to create this course. I’ve bought a lot of his prdocuts. After just 5 years he has a long track record of creating high quality information products fast, and selling them by the boatload. He’s at the top of his game, so this is the best time to get the course. Fladlien so good because he knows what his students want but also what they need; he uses judo on his rare failures, showing how to learn from them (at worst) and make money on them (at best); and he appears to hold nothing back. His earlier video products were marred by an annoying laugh. That’s gone: around the time he made his first million bucks in under a year, he tightened up his presentations and now just sounds authoritative. Can you really build a product in twHome page for week 1 of Product eClaso hours? I think so. I created Landing Page in an Hourin under a day when I took version 1.0 of the class. It wasn’t 2 hours–but then I violated Fladlien’s 2 hour guideline. I actually got up to pee. His hardcore rule stems from his admitted failure at creating products in more reasonable deadlines. By reasonable, I mean deadlines that would scare your pants off: a month, a week, a day. He found that if he gave himself no more than two hours, not even getting up to use the restroom, he managed to get a product built from soup to nuts every time. (But what if you really have to go, asked a student in a webinar. Hold it, the great man said. That’s some serious bidness.)

What I liked about Product eClass

  • It’s all there Product eClass is not just about creating products, by the way. Crucially also shows you how to see if there’s a market. It has a bonus product suggesting specific products to build. It comes with a bonus course on driving traffic. Fladlien’s approach is almost always unconventional, practical, and incredibly direct. And in the course of the 6 or 7 weeks, Fladlien answers a ton of questions from users that cover just about anything not formally announced as part of the coursework. It’s all in the transcript and video.
  • Good transcripts They are excellent transcriptions and have the PowerPoint slides embedded where appropriate. Video can be good for the first time you consume information, but after that it’s good to have a quicker way to refer back. Text is best for that.
  • Lifetime membership your membership to Product eClass is good for as long as the site stays up. I still go back to the version 1 class sometimes, and that was almost 2 years go.
  • Free product to sell yourself In the course of the class Fladlien creates a unique product to which you get resale rights. A canny marketer could make back the class fee with just that.
  • Downloadable videos You can download the class videos, so if you want to view them on a mobile device with Net access, or simply want a backup in case anything happens to the Product eClass site, you’re covered.
  • Generous content Fladlien does not stint. The videos are usually a couple hours long or more. The transcript for class 1, for example, runs 80 pages of single-spaced print.

Shortcomings

I have  a couple complaints about Product eClass.

  • Transcripts are too big! A PDF file that should be a megabyte or so weighed in a 12 megabytes, probably because it included graphics from the PowerPoint presentation and they didn’t use Word’s feature optimize graphics size.
  • Can’t move ahead in the material. Classes are released one week at a time, even though it was recorded last February. As an “advanced” student I find it annoying. Fladlien says “it would be doing you no service” to flood students with information on the first day. Whatever. I read fast!
  • There are a few areas where he talks about general business issues (such as the history of innovations) that don’t apply immediately to awesome product creation. On the other hand, I would love to hear more stories about his time as a monk rapper. So you can’t please everyone…

Is your area of expertise marketable? Maybe not, so Fladlien shows you how to figure it out in minutes. What if you’re not an expert? Amazingly, he covers that too, and  demonstrates how he’s gone from 0 to 60 just to see if he could sell a product in an area where he had no prior special knowledge. Are you outside the internet marketing realm? No problem. While well suited to IM’ers, Product eClass is explicitly for any kind of product. Product eClass is a comprehensive, best of breed product aimed at anyone who would like to sell their expertise.

3 May
2012

Continuity Overdrive PLR Review

Lee McIntyre is a gifted internet marketer, and I was a bit surprised when he released his Continuity Overdrive product as PLR; obviously, I had to buy it and do a review. Continuity, by the way, is internet marketing jargon for membership. So a “continuity product” is a membership site, meaning you sell it under a subscription model instead of one price all at once. I think there’s some kind of convoluted reason to call it “continuity” but I hate jargon, so there it is.

Continuity Overdrive a set of 8 unedited videos of a conference in an anonymous office building somewhere. Typical length is an hour or two Lighting is not great, and it’s not in HD. Doesn’t matter much. McIntyre is a personable and dynamic speaker. He has a good background story (serial career switcher, trained lawyer, teacher, pioneered digital delivery on eBay and did pretty well, moved smoothly to IM in 2007), has the empathy one hopes for from an IM instructor, and at this point has plenty of experience under his belt. Each session has a streaming video hosted on the site, a downloadable video, a Word transcript, and a PDF version of the transcript.

Picture of page 1 of the Continuity Overdrive download page

Picture of page 1 of the Continuity Overdrive download page

Lee McIntyre in a Box

I view courses like this as a sort of consultant-in-a-box opportunity. On the one hand, you get huge amounts of information at a reasonable price. On the other hand, you have to sit through the whole thing and don’t get to ask questions. Since these classes contain a lot of give and take, I found that there were literally no questions I wanted to ask myself that weren’t asked and answered as the classes unfold.

He shares both success and failure stories, the kind of thing that you’d pay a fortune to learn if you hired a consultant with his qualifications. The data is quite specific, drilling deep into issues as detailed as how you’d handle product fulfillment from the US if your firm is in the UK.

The video files are in Flash FLV format and they’re huge. The file for Day 1 is 661MB. I am pretty good at video if not a world expert, and I think distributing as FLVs is mistake. If I understand correctly it’s harder to edit FVL files than more common, uncompressed formats such as the ubiquitous AVI. FLV is a compressed format and AVI is not, so the source material is better. (Please correct me in the comments if I’m wrong.) Certainly, many fewer video editors support FLV as input than AVI, though they all output FLV.

Why I think Lee in a Box is a real opportunity

In my opinion, the first 40 minutes of Continuity Overdrive PLR could be hacked to just a few minutes without losing value: but that’s the exact reason this product could make you some serious cheddar. The conventional wisdom in PLR is that you must add value to spin your source material into gold.

Well, done and one! The problem with the vast majority of PLR is that it was cranked out by dollar an article writers stealing from other dollar an hour writers, who themselves stole from questionable article directories. The massive advantage to using a product by Lee McIntyre as a starting point is that, well, it’s Lee McIntyre. Cout out the 30% that’s rambling and you have a tight, focused, experience-driven product people would be grateful to pay for.

What I liked about the Continuity Overdrive PLR

  • It’s inexpensive. For the $97 price, you get full rights to redistribute this product any way you choose. The course is worth $97 without PLR rights, so it’s an extreme bargain
  • The videos can be streamed right off the PLR website, so you can preview them before downloading. That’s good because the downloads are so big
  • The license is permissive, as PLR content should be. A note on the main download page says “You can use this content in any way you wish. You can sell it using your own sales materials… or you have give it away to build your list.”
  • He discusses… Ethics? I’m pretty well off. Very well off. I could be a lot richer if I cut some corners and engaged in questionable if legal business practices. Lee deals with these very issues, showing you how to do things the upfront way so “you can sleep at night”. I like that.

Shortcomings

  • Only raw materials. It’s just talking head videos and transcripts. There are no worksheets, mind maps, PowerPoint presentations, or even a sales page. However, this is hidden advantage for you–tighten up the videos, do some awesome cheatsheets, and you have a product no one else would have
  • No “table of contents”. You have to plow through everything to know what’s where. But see previous point

Bottom line: The Continuity Overdrive PLR course is an excellent value at $97 as just Continuity Overdrive without the PLR. With the PLR it seems like a no-brainer, and because it’s such solid material to start with you could piggyback onto Lee’s McIntyre’s good work. I didn’t get some free review copy. The PLR terms are unusually broad for a major market, and I commend Lee for that. I spent my own $97 on Continuity Overdrive PLR and found it worth every cent.

 

26 Jul
2011

Killer free book on Amazon FBA. This should be an affiliate link but it isn’t!

Selling on Amazon’s FBA Program is a 50-page free book that acts as a loss leader for their upsell products. But if you’re interested in selling on Amazon, the freebie alone is a fantastic way to start. I should make this an affiliate link but it isn’t. This is 50 pages of killer content for anyone wondering about selling on Amazon.

FBA means Fulfillment by Amazon and lets you get in on the Prime program with very little trouble. The book also covers:

  • How to get shippers to pick stock up at your house-at stupid low prices
  • How to get Amazon to handle customer service and refunds for you at no cost
  • How to ship internationally without filling out customs forms or getting ripped off on shipping
Highly recomended.

 

25 Jul
2011

Free Copywriting Tips

Straight-to-the-point mini copywriting course in one blog post at ProCopyTips.

Simple Viral Profits Review

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