DO INTERNET MARKETERS MAKE MORE MONEY on the Internet or off the Internet? This is one of the many questions that came to mind at the end of the recent World Internet Mega Summit (WIMS 2007) at the Singapore Expo. My ex-boss, now a corporate client, had given me a complimentary ticket to the mega seminar. At the end of the four-day event on May 26-29 (Saturday to Tuesday), I was glad to have learnt a number of marketing techniques. I was also troubled by some of the things that I saw and heard.
There were 10 speakers: Brett McFall, Tom Hua, Jay Abraham, Mark Joyner, Armand Morin, David Cavanagh, Ewen Chia, Stephen Peirce, Mike Filsaime, and John Childers. Each internet marketing guru on the stage spoke persuasively of having a simple easy-to-follow system which guaranteed success. Some qualified by adding, “lots of hard work over a period of time”. Somehow though, with the possible exception of Jay Abraham and Mark Joyner, their systems all looked and sounded the same:
Basically, each guru suggested offering a freebie to lure prospects to a site and into giving their email addresses. Then the hardsell process begins in earnest: A one-time irresistible offer is made online and the specially designed website starts to sell in almost all possible ways (upsell, downsell, cross-sell, etc.) until the prospect yields to temptation and pays up.
AT THE END OF EACH GURU’S TALK during the WIMS 2007 seminar was invariably a sales pitch, whereby the guru would show what looked like an endless list of over-priced products/services. Then he would slash the prices to about a tenth or more, and tell the audience to buy NOW. Many people actually did as told.
I did a quick estimation. Some of the speakers charge each attendee $5,000++ for attending his program which includes one day of training, two days of coaching and monthly meetings for one year. If 100 people sign up for the program, he’d have made $500,000 (half a million!) per program.
I also ran some checks on the PageRanks (using the multiple PageRank checker) and the estimated traffic (using AttentionMeter.com) on the speakers’ websites and found the following:
Fig. 3: Compete.com Graph for ArmandMorin.com, BizSuccessOnline.com, BrettMcFall.com & StephenLive.com
Fig. 4: Compete.com Graph for Abraham.com, Aesop.com, EwenChia.com, MarkJoyner.name, MikeFilsaime.com
Fig. 5: Compete.com Graph for Aesop.com, ArticleCity.com, AutoPilotProfits.com, eBookWholesaler.net, Simpleology.com
- AutoPilotProfits.com belongs to Ewen Chia, Aesop.com and Simple-ology.com belongs to Mark Joyner, ebookwholesaler.net belongs to Tom Hua.
- With rampant link exchanges on the Net, PageRanks are increasingly being manipulated.
- Traffick, a search engine blog, wrote (”On Alexa, Compete.com, Quantcast, et al.”, February 06, 2007):
“People who don’t know too much about web stats love to quote Alexa ranks way too much… that’s seen as a silly thing to do by those “in the know”. But still, darned tempting. You can buy better data, but Alexa is free.
“More recently, upstarts that don’t seem too dissimilar to Alexa have come along: Compete.com, Quantcast, etc…. Based on the evidence I’ve sifted through, there’s not a shred to suggest that Compete.com is better at this stage, and some to suggest it’s actually worse.”
I remember from experience that hardsell also happens in face-to-face sessions. And how I hate being subject to it! These guys are shrewd marketers. These techniques probably really work well. Perhaps consumers need to beware! How many times have we bought things that we don’t need but thought we need at that moment of buying? Still, what are the right things to do when one really needs to make a living and so sell well on the Net (or elsewhere)? And just who (if any) have achieved real successes?
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