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You WON'T Make BIG MONEY Until You Understand This... Even If You're Providing Value

Black_Dragon43

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You've tried Facebook/Google ads. You've tried Upwork. You've tried eCommerce. You've tried other side gigs. You've tried freelancing... And you aren't making the money you know you deserve, even after a year or more of trying to provide VALUE... You keep reading stuff, you've read MJ's books, you're hanging around this forum and others, but no dice.

Does that sound like you?

Have you ever STOPPED to ask why that is happening to you? Why is it that you're not getting paid as much as you deserve? Why is it that OTHERS are always making the $$$ and you're on the sidelines?

They say EXECUTION is king. Surely it is... but BAD execution won't get you to the promised land, I can assure you. You need to EXECUTE on the right thing.

Here's a little secret.

There is a group of direct response marketers online who are consistently making BIG BUCKS. And they are doing so because they know how to use (and sometimes abuse) the human mind.

These guys aren't always selling products that are the best... (although, to let you in on another secret, it's easy to have the best product when you're making the most money :) )... and yet, they are outselling everyone else.

How do I know?

I've built a 6-figure direct response agency. I've worked for many of those guys. I know what they know.

They understand the economic game. And until you start understanding how TRANSACTIONS work - WHY someone hands over their money - you will not make a living online.

So here's the BIG SECRET that can help you get started the SMART way:

The Foundation Of All Economic Transactions Is TRUST... People Give Money To People They TRUST... And They Hold It Away From People They Don't Trust

Why the 100% Money Back Guarantee? It builds trust.
Why do they say you have to believe in your product? If you don't believe, how do you expect others to TRUST you?
Why the FREE Lead Magnets? (provide value to gain trust).
Why do so many people here tell you to provide value? (to gain trust)
Why bother with testimonials? (gain trust)
Why bother with social proof? (gain trust)
Why bother with reciprocity? (gain trust)
Why SALES FUNNELS? (incrementally provide value to build more trust to be able to provide even MORE value)

So that's what it's all about...

90% OF DIRECT RESPONSE MARKETING IS ABOUT BUILDING TRUST
The other 10% is scarcity and the other fancy stuff that solicit an immediate response.

Because here's the deal... You may be hitting the market with HUGE VALUE. But people don't trust you.

And lack of trust = lack of sales.

So if you get stuck thinking that your problem is NOT ENOUGH value, you're never going to make it. The fact is most people provide more value than they are aware of.

And if YOU don't become conscious of your value, no one else will.

Let me ask you a question. If I'm trying to sell you right now a sales funnel for $15,000, are you gonna flip out your wallet and pay me?

No?

But I've built multiple 6-figure funnels... So I CAN provide that value to you.

So why won't you pay?

You don't have money... Good excuse. Why don't you go and ask all your friends and relative and the bank to loan it to you? With the 6-figure sales funnel I make for you, you'll make it 10x times back...

So lack of money isn't the reason for not paying me.

Why then?

Is it because you don't trust me?

Right. That's it.

So selling, especially when it comes to higher ticket items is 100% about trust. NOT about value. Value is needed just to build trust and provide a REASON for people to part with their money.

But if you start out with HUGE value... you won't close any sales just like that. You need to build trust first. And you build trust by providing value INCREMENTALLY.

So, if you want to start making BIG MONEY ONLINE, here's what you should do next.

Build a PROCESS of incrementally providing value to gain trust. And THEN provide more and more value (at higher prices). That's how I've done it. That's how the guys I work for have done it. That's how YOU can do it too.

If you do that, it won't be long until people will be ready to flip out their wallets and pay you $15K too.

Maybe you're asking why should you trust me on this? Well, don't. After all, I'm just a random dude on the internet, you don't know much about me, nor about my company. So the fact this stuff is coming from me, means nothing for you. Cool.

Because here's the thing. You don't need to trust me to take this information and START APPLYING IT to your own situation.

The results will speak for themselves.
 

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Good post, but I think there's more to it than trust being 90% of the deal.

You can build all the incremental trust in the world - you'll still struggle to sell the brooklyn bridge for $10,000 to someone that trusts you.

And if you're a drug dealer, you won't have a problem selling your product to a complete stranger that doesn't trust you at all, so long as they want what you're selling.
 

Galacticum

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Spot on. Whether you are in the D2C ecom space or selling high ticket products, it all boils down to trust. The higher the trust the faster you get them to pull out the card.

Tons of companies have been solely built upon the power of Influencers and Trust.

Gym Shark operates in one of the most competitive spaces, doesn't sell any innovative products, was bootstrapped and is currently valued at $400MM.
How? By leveraging trust. People aren't just buying shirts for the sake of it. They want to represent a movement or idea.
Seeing your favorite fitness guru wear a GymShark shirt is a massive conversion rate booster.
 

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Indeed. Provide value wrong and people may not trust you. I think it's often down to intent. People generally have pretty good radars.
 

Galacticum

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Good post, but I think there's more to it than trust being 90% of the deal.

You can build all the incremental trust in the world - you'll still struggle to sell the brooklyn bridge for $10,000 to someone that trusts you.

And if you're a drug dealer, you won't have a problem selling your product to a complete stranger that doesn't trust you at all, so long as they want what you're selling.
Totally agree. Oftentimes you will see copywriters talk about how good their work is. But at the end of the day if the offer sucks no amount of copy will be able to save it.
 

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I would say its closely related to trust but slightly different - its certainty.

I can trust X person but that doesn't make them qualified to help me.
But if I trust X person and I am certain they can help me that changes the game.

I trust my mum but I wouldn't give her 15k to make me a sales funnel.

I don't mean to take from your thread as it is useful advice but its missing that extra part I feel.

Its need to be trust, but trust based on the certainty of a desired result or emotion.
 

The-J

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Trust modifies perceived risk. Perceived risk negatively affects value.

I think there's a chapter of Unscripted that discusses this very thing and goes into pretty great detail about it.
 
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Black_Dragon43

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How To Provide Value Incrementally, Gain Trust, And Grow Your Revenues

OR

The Science Of Creating Money-Making Machines

This is the next part. I'll show you the process that will help you go from NO TRUST to HIGH TRUST, and take you from making PENNIES to making BIG BUCKS online.

Stay tuned because this post will also reveal the EXACT sales funnel behind one of my agency's streams of revenue. I'm not scared to do this, because no one can execute like us.

In fact, I'll reveal some diagrams (the exact ones, minus the logo) I use to train people who work for me - so this really is insider knowledge!

The Basics

Any course in direct response marketing for the web ought to start with explaining to you what a SALES FUNNEL is. This is the central bit of everything - it is your money-making machine.

A sales funnel is simply the PROCESS a prospect goes through in their relationship with you - from the first contact to the ULTIMATE VALUE that you are going to provide. Everyone has a sales funnel (yes, even if they don't use Clickfunnels :p ).

It typically looks like this:

28459
Many of you know this already.

What you may NOT know, is WHY does it look like this and HOW can you use it to gain trust and grow your sales?

Why?

Simply because all our transactions are built upon trust, and without it, it's not possible to overcome the resistance that stands in the way of making the transaction of MONEY <-> VALUE.

Transactions don't occur without trust.

That's why during a depression, when everything becomes uncertain, business slows down massively. Trust is the main resource that is eroded during an economic downturn, that's why such a large part of government efforts go into increasing CONFIDENCE.

So direct response marketers know this. That's why they've created sales funnels - processes that build customer trust and make the transaction of VALUE and HIGH TICKET ITEMS possible.

Why Is Trust So Important?

Trust is what ensures that you believe what I tell you. You don't know what the offer/product will do for you - you have to take it, at some level, on trust. If trust is built between us, when I tell you I will build a 6-figure funnel for you, you'll believe me. If you don't believe me, then in-so-far as sales funnels are concerned, you don't trust me.

Fine, How Can I Use This To Grow My Revenues?

By actually creating a sales funnel. The secret to doing that well is to create a series of what I call value steps.

Each value step represents a different transaction, and the goal is, through multiple successful transactions, to build the trust necessary to make BIGGER transactions and provide the ULTIMATE VALUE that you want to give your customers.

Because, just as I said, you won't be able to provide that ULTIMATE VALUE without first building trust. So if you're looking to provide it, you're banging your head against the wall so long as you forget about building a sales funnel and building trust.

How do you decide what your value steps should be?

The Bottom Up Approach (Real Case Study too)

28460

(You'll understand how to apply the above concept for yourself by the end)

The idea is that we start at the very bottom of the funnel. At the very last step.

The first question to ask yourself:

1. What Is The ULTIMATE VALUE That You Want To Provide?

The ultimate value is typically your most expensive service, and the one offer you WISH everyone would buy.

I started making money online by offering direct response copywriting services. I'm sure many of you here started the same way.

It wasn't fastlane - I was basically exchanging time for money. But it was better than working a JOB and having a direct BOSS. Over time I've grown from that small starting point into running a direct response marketing agency - we do everything from web design, development, copywriting, ads, - anything required to grow online businesses - all with the goal of helping others grow their businesses as fast as possible.

Services of most kinds require an exchange of time for money - whether it is YOUR time, or the time of your EMPLOYEES. So for me, the ULTIMATE VALUE is to get others to hire my agency to build a sales funnel for them since it consumes my most valuable resource - TIME.

If you're offering a service to people, something where you exchange time for money, then the ULTIMATE VALUE is giving people YOUR TIME. That's the most valuable thing.

Think about it. All your skills, knowledge, etc. you can transfer over and let others do it. But your time, you can't transfer that over to anyone else.

Here's how that would look for us (just an example, actual numbers/services may differ):

28461

These are just some general clues - you have to think for yourself and find out what is your ULTIMATE VALUE. What is that one service that you WISH everyone would buy?

The second question to ask yourself is:

2. What Can You Provide To People Who WON'T Buy Your ULTIMATE VALUE yet To Get Them READY TO BUY?

Take my case. You won't trust me to build you a funnel. What can I provide to you that will get you to (1) trust me more, and (2) be able to afford paying me?

It seems straightforward no? Something that teaches YOU what I know so that you can build a funnel for yourself, without me having to give you my time. Let's say it's a Video Course worth $3K.

28462

The benefits are HUGE. Think about it. (1) I don't spend my own time + that of my employees (except to prepare the course), (2) you buy it, apply, see that you're getting results and start trusting us, (3) By applying and getting results, you build up the money needed to get that ULTIMATE VALUE. What could be a better way of selling my main service?

So think about your own business now. What can you help that segment of the market who doesn't trust you enough and who aren't ready to flip out their wallets and buy your ULTIMATE VALUE?

That's the offer you should have here.

The third question to ask yourself is:

3. What Can I Provide To People Who Won't Buy My Previous Offer To Get Them Ready To Buy It?

Well, take my case again. For (2) above I have a video course which shows you how to do each step, and consultancy to guide you. Say that my ULTIMATE VALUE costs $15K, my video course + consultancy costs $3K. So what can I provide in this value step to get you ready to hand over $3K for the next step?

Maybe an eBook. That's why we have an eBook for entry-level entrepreneurs who are keen on making money online but who cannot afford to hire us.

Price it somewhere between $30-100. Pretty much any entrepreneur at the start of their journey can afford that. It will teach them the principles of everything that we do. Like the previous step, you'll get it, use it, make more money, be able to afford to upgrade to the next value step, and trust us more.

28463

Depending on the number of segments you have in your particular market, you'll have more (or less) of these offers. Above there are two such intermediate value steps. So questions (2) and (3) can repeat until you reach the very top of your funnel.

Then the final question:

4 (or however much it is for you). What Can I Provide To Attract People Who Would Be Benefited By What I'm Offering But Who Don't Trust Me To Get Started?

This is the entry level offer. I recommend something for FREE, especially if you're in a low-trust industry with high competition.

This very thread is an example. Online marketing is a low-trust industry with high-competition - a ton of scams out there. But what will happen is that many of you will read this, and you'll start applying these concepts to your own business.

And what will happen then?

You'll MAKE MORE MONEY. And then because you've tasted it and it is good, you'll want more. I don't HAVE TO sell you after that. You'll want to work with me by yourself.

28464

Lead Magnets are the most effective way to get started with a funnel. A cheatsheet, a small tutorial, a product sample - it could be a whole host of different things. You have to be careful to choose the right one for your market though. That takes some market research and some testing to see what kind of lead magnet will get you the best results (this post doesn't cover that).

Another important thing to consider for this entry-level free offer: make it something that appeals to as wide an audience as possible. The further down you go in your sales funnel, the more specific your offers need to get.

For example, people who are ready to work with us and pay $15K for a funnel already know most of the stuff revealed in this thread. At that level, more in-depth knowledge is required - the kind of knowledge that is much more specific and can significantly improve results for someone who already has the basics right.

So there you have it!

The process of gaining trust by incrementally providing value in order to become capable to close transactions that provide your ULTIMATE VALUE. Here's a summary of the Bottom Up Approach once again:

28460

A Few Extra Notes
This is some extra knowledge for those who enjoy learning about direct response marketing. I love teaching others this stuff, so that's why I'm putting this here too.

Notice that if you look at the sales funnel building approach revealed above, you will notice that it is all about MARKET SEGMENTATION.

In other words, at each Value Step you're sorting the wheat from the chaff. Not only will the people who get to the end of the funnel have the most money, they will also be the very best and most successful. So for those of you who LOVE working with the very best, and who desire to work with people at the upper levels in your industry, this is super important.

At the top of the funnel you are addressing a very general audience, and as you go down into it, you get more and more specific and detailed.

Remember the 80/20 rule?

:)

That applies here too. 80% of your revenue will come from the bottom of your funnel. The bottom of your funnel also happens to be where the backend marketing (email) is usually going on. And just some market data from the agency: most people CAN'T make money on the front-end anymore.

So if you REALLY want to make the BIG MONEY you must learn about backend marketing. For many online industries, this is no longer a luxury, but a necessity. It's a very competitive world out there, what can I say...

And there are lots of scams too. Why am I telling you this?

Because If You Want To Succeed, Honesty Really Is The Best Policy

In order to progressively get people to the end of your funnel and to where your backend can really drive your revenue/profit, you MUST build trust. It's very easy to lose trust. If one of your offers doesn't work out, then you'll lose trust and people won't go to the next level. You may be able to fool some people, but it's not gonna work in the long run.

As I've built my agency, I've seen the online market become more and more competitive. It's not like it used to be 10 years ago out there. It's an entirely different world. If you could get away without a solid understanding of SALES and SALES PROCESSES before, that is no longer possible.

People are more skeptical than ever, your competitors more fierce than ever before - so you really have to shine to succeed. And the best way to do that? Incrementally provide value, build trust, and DELIVER.
 
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Black_Dragon43

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I trust my mum but I wouldn't give her 15k to make me a sales funnel.
Which I think shows that you don't trust your mom when it comes to creating a high-converting funnel for you, no? Maybe you trust her with other stuff, but not with this.

You can build all the incremental trust in the world - you'll still struggle to sell the brooklyn bridge for $10,000 to someone that trusts you.
There have been people who sold the Brooklyn Bridge before... George C. Parker - Wikipedia

And if you're a drug dealer, you won't have a problem selling your product to a complete stranger that doesn't trust you at all, so long as they want what you're selling.
Right. The strategies mentioned above are meant to be used in highly competitive markets online, where the availability of the goods is high. Of course if I, for example, have a government backed monopoly on drinking water, then all I need to do is say "I have water" and that's that. No other sales effort needed.

The drug dealer though, also works largely based on trust. You don't go to any random drug dealer. You ask around, see where others go, etc.

Free markets are based on trust. Take trust away, and transactions aren't happening.
 
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Process

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I would say its closely related to trust but slightly different - its certainty.

I can trust X person but that doesn't make them qualified to help me.
But if I trust X person and I am certain they can help me that changes the game.

I trust my mum but I wouldn't give her 15k to make me a sales funnel.

I don't mean to take from your thread as it is useful advice but its missing that extra part I feel.

Its need to be trust, but trust based on the certainty of a desired result or emotion.

You nailed it. People won't jump out of a plane unless they are certain the parachute works.

But to OP's point, certainty and trust often do go hand in hand.
 
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Low Chi

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@Black_Dragon43 how do you handle the shift of customer perception in these funnels? If a customer trusts but then he realizes during funnel/checkout "uh... looks like an upselling scheme" and the funnel itself becomes the showstopper of the selling process?

Platform closing contaminated some markets e.g. "not another free book" (You just pay postal service.) "Yeah, got it. I wait till I'll get your book used on ebay."

Other examples:
-"Live webinars" which are recorded obviously (User experience: You lied to me.),
-Keywords which are used already by people selling crap, but necessary in your field... (Oh, I heard about that too from the guy who tried to trick me last time.),
-faked shortage of availability (of products in stock, available seats or appointments)
 

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Fox

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Again not to sidetrack this thread but the 90% trust thing is off.

Trust is needed, of course, but at a certain level there are going to be various people they can trust.

If you go to book a hotel or get a tattoo you might find dozens of five star review options.

The person who will win the sale was the one the buyer felt most certain about. Certain that the particular service or product was the best fit for them - personally.

If you backwards engineer what made most people go ahead with a tricky buying decision it’s going to come down to they could logically trust this person but they felt both emotional and logically certain it was right for them.

I just think the 90% trust thing is over simplifying things.
 

Champion

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I would say its closely related to trust but slightly different - its certainty.

I can trust X person but that doesn't make them qualified to help me.
But if I trust X person and I am certain they can help me that changes the game.

I trust my mum but I wouldn't give her 15k to make me a sales funnel.

I don't mean to take from your thread as it is useful advice but its missing that extra part I feel.

Its need to be trust, but trust based on the certainty of a desired result or emotion.
Awesome thread, thanks alot for the useful infos.

As fox says, I also think its trust + certainty that you will help your customer achieve the desired emotion/feeling/goal/status which is being craved!

Best
Champion
 

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How To Provide Value Incrementally, Gain Trust, And Grow Your Revenues

OR

The Science Of Creating Money-Making Machines

This is the next part. I'll show you the process that will help you go from NO TRUST to HIGH TRUST, and take you from making PENNIES to making BIG BUCKS online.

Stay tuned because this post will also reveal the EXACT sales funnel behind one of my agency's streams of revenue. I'm not scared to do this, because no one can execute like us.

In fact, I'll reveal some diagrams (the exact ones, minus the logo) I use to train people who work for me - so this really is insider knowledge!

The Basics

Any course in direct response marketing for the web ought to start with explaining to you what a SALES FUNNEL is. This is the central bit of everything - it is your money-making machine.

A sales funnel is simply the PROCESS a prospect goes through in their relationship with you - from the first contact to the ULTIMATE VALUE that you are going to provide. Everyone has a sales funnel (yes, even if they don't use Clickfunnels :p ).

It typically looks like this:

Many of you know this already.

What you may NOT know, is WHY does it look like this and HOW can you use it to gain trust and grow your sales?

Why?

Simply because all our transactions are built upon trust, and without it, it's not possible to overcome the resistance that stands in the way of making the transaction of MONEY <-> VALUE.

Transactions don't occur without trust.

That's why during a depression, when everything becomes uncertain, business slows down massively. Trust is the main resource that is eroded during an economic downturn, that's why such a large part of government efforts go into increasing CONFIDENCE.

So direct response marketers know this. That's why they've created sales funnels - processes that build customer trust and make the transaction of VALUE and HIGH TICKET ITEMS possible.

Why Is Trust So Important?

Trust is what ensures that you believe what I tell you. You don't know what the offer/product will do for you - you have to take it, at some level, on trust. If trust is built between us, when I tell you I will build a 6-figure funnel for you, you'll believe me. If you don't believe me, then in-so-far as sales funnels are concerned, you don't trust me.

Fine, How Can I Use This To Grow My Revenues?

By actually creating a sales funnel. The secret to doing that well is to create a series of what I call value steps.

Each value step represents a different transaction, and the goal is, through multiple successful transactions, to build the trust necessary to make BIGGER transactions and provide the ULTIMATE VALUE that you want to give your customers.

Because, just as I said, you won't be able to provide that ULTIMATE VALUE without first building trust. So if you're looking to provide it, you're banging your head against the wall so long as you forget about building a sales funnel and building trust.

How do you decide what your value steps should be?

The Bottom Up Approach (Real Case Study too)


(You'll understand how to apply the above concept for yourself by the end)

The idea is that we start at the very bottom of the funnel. At the very last step.

The first question to ask yourself:

1. What Is The ULTIMATE VALUE That You Want To Provide?

The ultimate value is typically your most expensive service, and the one offer you WISH everyone would buy.

I started making money online by offering direct response copywriting services. I'm sure many of you here started the same way.

It wasn't fastlane - I was basically exchanging time for money. But it was better than working a JOB and having a direct BOSS. Over time I've grown from that small starting point into running a direct response marketing agency - we do everything from web design, development, copywriting, ads, - anything required to grow online businesses - all with the goal of helping others grow their businesses as fast as possible.

Services of most kinds require an exchange of time for money - whether it is YOUR time, or the time of your EMPLOYEES. So for me, the ULTIMATE VALUE is to get others to hire my agency to build a sales funnel for them since it consumes my most valuable resource - TIME.

If you're offering a service to people, something where you exchange time for money, then the ULTIMATE VALUE is giving people YOUR TIME. That's the most valuable thing.

Think about it. All your skills, knowledge, etc. you can transfer over and let others do it. But your time, you can't transfer that over to anyone else.

Here's how that would look for us (just an example, actual numbers/services may differ):


These are just some general clues - you have to think for yourself and find out what is your ULTIMATE VALUE. What is that one service that you WISH everyone would buy?

The second question to ask yourself is:

2. What Can You Provide To People Who WON'T Buy Your ULTIMATE VALUE yet To Get Them READY TO BUY?

Take my case. You won't trust me to build you a funnel. What can I provide to you that will get you to (1) trust me more, and (2) be able to afford paying me?

It seems straightforward no? Something that teaches YOU what I know so that you can build a funnel for yourself, without me having to give you my time. Let's say it's a Video Course worth $3K.


The benefits are HUGE. Think about it. (1) I don't spend my own time + that of my employees (except to prepare the course), (2) you buy it, apply, see that you're getting results and start trusting us, (3) By applying and getting results, you build up the money needed to get that ULTIMATE VALUE. What could be a better way of selling my main service?

So think about your own business now. What can you help that segment of the market who doesn't trust you enough and who aren't ready to flip out their wallets and buy your ULTIMATE VALUE?

That's the offer you should have here.

The third question to ask yourself is:

3. What Can I Provide To People Who Won't Buy My Previous Offer To Get Them Ready To Buy It?

Well, take my case again. For (2) above I have a video course which shows you how to do each step, and consultancy to guide you. Say that my ULTIMATE VALUE costs $15K, my video course + consultancy costs $3K. So what can I provide in this value step to get you ready to hand over $3K for the next step?

Maybe an eBook. That's why we have an eBook for entry-level entrepreneurs who are keen on making money online but who cannot afford to hire us.

Price it somewhere between $30-100. Pretty much any entrepreneur at the start of their journey can afford that. It will teach them the principles of everything that we do. Like the previous step, you'll get it, use it, make more money, be able to afford to upgrade to the next value step, and trust us more.


Depending on the number of segments you have in your particular market, you'll have more (or less) of these offers. Above there are two such intermediate value steps. So questions (2) and (3) can repeat until you reach the very top of your funnel.

Then the final question:

4 (or however much it is for you). What Can I Provide To Attract People Who Would Be Benefited By What I'm Offering But Who Don't Trust Me To Get Started?

This is the entry level offer. I recommend something for FREE, especially if you're in a low-trust industry with high competition.

This very thread is an example. Online marketing is a low-trust industry with high-competition - a ton of scams out there. But what will happen is that many of you will read this, and you'll start applying these concepts to your own business.

And what will happen then?

You'll MAKE MORE MONEY. And then because you've tasted it and it is good, you'll want more. I don't HAVE TO sell you after that. You'll want to work with me by yourself.


Lead Magnets are the most effective way to get started with a funnel. A cheatsheet, a small tutorial, a product sample - it could be a whole host of different things. You have to be careful to choose the right one for your market though. That takes some market research and some testing to see what kind of lead magnet will get you the best results (this post doesn't cover that).

Another important thing to consider for this entry-level free offer: make it something that appeals to as wide an audience as possible. The further down you go in your sales funnel, the more specific your offers need to get.

For example, people who are ready to work with us and pay $15K for a funnel already know most of the stuff revealed in this thread. At that level, more in-depth knowledge is required - the kind of knowledge that is much more specific and can significantly improve results for someone who already has the basics right.

So there you have it!

The process of gaining trust by incrementally providing value in order to become capable to close transactions that provide your ULTIMATE VALUE. Here's a summary of the Bottom Up Approach once again:


A Few Extra Notes
This is some extra knowledge for those who enjoy learning about direct response marketing. I love teaching others this stuff, so that's why I'm putting this here too.

Notice that if you look at the sales funnel building approach revealed above, you will notice that it is all about MARKET SEGMENTATION.

In other words, at each Value Step you're sorting the wheat from the chaff. Not only will the people who get to the end of the funnel have the most money, they will also be the very best and most successful. So for those of you who LOVE working with the very best, and who desire to work with people at the upper levels in your industry, this is super important.

At the top of the funnel you are addressing a very general audience, and as you go down into it, you get more and more specific and detailed.

Remember the 80/20 rule?

:)

That applies here too. 80% of your revenue will come from the bottom of your funnel. The bottom of your funnel also happens to be where the backend marketing (email) is usually going on. And just some market data from the agency: most people CAN'T make money on the front-end anymore.

So if you REALLY want to make the BIG MONEY you must learn about backend marketing. For many online industries, this is no longer a luxury, but a necessity. It's a very competitive world out there, what can I say...

And there are lots of scams too. Why am I telling you this?

Because If You Want To Succeed, Honesty Really Is The Best Policy

In order to progressively get people to the end of your funnel and to where your backend can really drive your revenue/profit, you MUST build trust. It's very easy to lose trust. If one of your offers doesn't work out, then you'll lose trust and people won't go to the next level. You may be able to fool some people, but it's not gonna work in the long run.

As I've built my agency, I've seen the online market become more and more competitive. It's not like it used to be 10 years ago out there. It's an entirely different world. If you could get away without a solid understanding of SALES and SALES PROCESSES before, that is no longer possible.

People are more skeptical than ever, your competitors more fierce than ever before - so you really have to shine to succeed. And the best way to do that? Incrementally provide value, build trust, and DELIVER.
Great post. Especially the second part.

I do agree with @Fox that 90% trust is oversimplifying.

But still, tremendous information. Thanks!
 

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Again not to sidetrack this thread but the 90% trust thing is off.

Trust is needed, of course, but at a certain level there are going to be various people they can trust.

If you go to book a hotel or get a tattoo you might find dozens of five star review options.

The person who will win the sale was the one the buyer felt most certain about. Certain that the particular service or product was the best fit for them - personally.

If you backwards engineer what made most people go ahead with a tricky buying decision it’s going to come down to they could logically trust this person but they felt both emotional and logically certain it was right for them.

Anyway that’s my last post on it. I just think the 90% trust thing is overly simplifying things.
Kind of pointless what the actual percentage is because that's completely unquantifiable. However it doesn't take away from the OP's point, trust is a large part of business.

If a random dude offered you a Ferrari for $5000 with a story of why it was so cheap, you would naturally feel troubled and would not go for it for fear of being scammed. However if MJ offered you the same car, with the same reasons on why it was such a great deal, my guess is you'd go for it.

Why? Because you trust MJ not to scam you.

In fact, I'm going bigger, trust is 99.99% of any deal, because nobody buys from people/companies they don't trust, no matter how good the deal.

"I think I'm about to be ripped off, but I really want this product, so I'm going for it anyway." - said nobody ever.
 

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Kind of pointless what the actual percentage is because that's completely unquantifiable. However it doesn't take away from the OP's point, trust is a large part of business.

If a random dude offered you a Ferrari for $5000 with a story of why it was so cheap, you would naturally feel troubled and would not go for it for fear of being scammed. However if MJ offered you the same car, with the same reasons on why it was such a great deal, my guess is you'd go for it.

Why? Because you trust MJ not to scam you.

In fact, I'm going bigger, trust is 99.99% of any deal, because nobody buys from people/companies they don't trust, no matter how good the deal.

"I think I'm about to be ripped off, but I really want this product, so I'm going for it anyway." - said nobody ever.
I didn't say it wasn't important but it isn't 99.99% of sales.

Are you saying everything you ever bought was because it was from the number #1 most trusted person you could have bought it from?

I am sure you did trust the people you bought from but that doesn't mean you buy from everyone you trust. Otherwise, we would all be driving Volvos.

Simplifying sales like this isn't going to help you in the long term. When "trust" starts meaning 100 different things then it isn't going to be useful as a label.

To get exceptional results in sales, you must gain an understanding of people, what they want and not only build trust, but also certainty with them. Old school selling was simply based on understanding the customer's needs and building trust to close the deal. Today with information available everywhere, your buyer seeks third party sources to give them the certainty of what to purchase and how much to pay.

Once a buyer has done their research, they still always buy products and services for one reason: to solve a problem. They need to be certain. No one makes a buying decision when they are uncertain. When a buyer is uncertain they stall the process.
- Grant Cardone.

At the highest level, sales is the transference of emotion. And the primary emotion you’re transferring is certainty.
- Jordan Belford.

I like this thread but it isn't going to help people to learn how to sell when it's simplified down to blanket statements that mean nothing.

You need trust to sell but only having trust doesn't give you a sale either.

Why I am even posting this in the first place is this:

If you tell people all they need to sell is to have trust they are going to be focusing on reviews, star rating, testimonials, proof etc.

All this stuff is highly useful but it misses the certainty side...

Showing people your product or service is right for them.

Not just that it was right for other people, and that you can be trusted, but that you can be 100% sure this is the right move for you based on your particular needs and wants.

When you got to a restaurant do you buy the burger you trust the most is a burger?
No - you trust all their burgers. You buy the one you are certain you want the most.
 

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I would say the one word missing from this discussion is connection. Yes you can build trust by providing value. By getting your audience to know you better over time. Giving them morsels hoping that it leads them to purchasing a meal.

Most of the talk about putting people through a funnel is treating them as a commodity and I feel is disingenuous. You are not making sausages. These are people, they could be your family.

It all depends on your product of course. But I've found a lot of the time it's building that connection that is most important. Yes that creates trust but that was not the specific aim. The trust is a bi-product of union. You are looking for YOUR tribe, the ones that YOU understand and can best serve, and will understand YOU. That get it. That is why story is so important. Sharing what matters most to you with the people that resonate at that same frequency.

'These are my values, and if they resonate with you then we can create a connection'.
'This is what I have gone through, if you are going through something similar we can create a connection'.
'These are my purposes in life, if we share common ground we can create a connection'.


Creating empathy by focusing in on finding your tribe and serving them to the best of your ability is far more powerful and long lasting than just looking at ways to synthetically create trust through pushing people through an ever narrowing pipeline.

I guess what I am saying is more akin to Kevin Kelly's 1000 true fans.

This might not be at the core of this discussion but I thought it needed to be aired by way of an alternative viewpoint.
 
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Black_Dragon43

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This is sidetracking the discussion, so I will address it first before I address the more pertinent issues brought up here.

Trust is needed, of course, but at a certain level there are going to be various people they can trust.

If you go to book a hotel or get a tattoo you might find dozens of five star review options.

The person who will win the sale was the one the buyer felt most certain about. Certain that the particular service or product was the best fit for them - personally.

If you backwards engineer what made most people go ahead with a tricky buying decision it’s going to come down to they could logically trust this person but they felt both emotional and logically certain it was right for them.
You mean something entirely different by trust than what I'm referring to. So we're really talking past each other. I tried to make this clear with my response to you trusting your mother, but my message doesn't seem to have gone across very well.

I can trust X person but that doesn't make them qualified to help me.
But if I trust X person and I am certain they can help me that changes the game.

I trust my mum but I wouldn't give her 15k to make me a sales funnel.
What do you mean by "trust" in these sentences? What does it mean that you "trust" person X but you're not certain that they can help you? It means that you GENERALLY find person X to be belieavable - ie, if person X said there's a Ferarri parked outside your house, you'd tend to believe him/her without doubting what s/he's saying. But you don't SPECIFICALLY trust that person X can help you in this particular situation.

But look at how I use trust...

Which I think shows that you don't trust your mom when it comes to creating a high-converting funnel for you, no? Maybe you trust her with other stuff, but not with this.
Trust is what ensures that you believe what I tell you. You don't know what the offer/product will do for you - you have to take it, at some level, on trust. If trust is built between us, when I tell you I will build a 6-figure funnel for you, you'll believe me. If you don't believe me, then in-so-far as sales funnels are concerned, you don't trust me.
What do I mean by trust here? Does it seem like we use the word with the same meaning?

Clearly, I don't mean the general-level believability of a person - I can't possibly mean that, since my sentences won't make sense if that's what I mean. I mean a different concept than you do.

I mean something very specific. I mean that you don't trust your mother when it comes to building a funnel for you. You clearly have the general-level believability in your mother (which is what you mean by trust), but you don't have the specific kind of trust that I'm referring to.
I didn't say it wasn't important but it isn't 99.99% of sales.
I wasn't talking about sales when I said:

90% OF DIRECT RESPONSE MARKETING IS ABOUT BUILDING TRUST
So if we aren't going to talk past each other, we have to try to stick to what the person is actually saying, and read things that they write in context.

Why did I say that? Because you can get all the other stuff right, but if you don't get trust, you're not going to get your customers to take action.
The person who will win the sale was the one the buyer felt most certain about. Certain that the particular service or product was the best fit for them - personally.
Yes, per my use of the word trust, the person who will win the sale is the one the buyer trusts most when it comes to providing the particular service/product that is a best fit for them - personally.

How is that different from what you're saying?

On another note, here's why I don't think "certainty" is as good of a word to use:

If we look at when transactions are made, we'll see that most people don't buy when they're CERTAIN (certainty is hard to achieve), but when they believe that buying means less pain and more pleasure for them and not buying means more pain and less pleasure for them. If they believe that, they will buy. So is certainty, ie having no doubts, required for a transaction to happen? I don't think so - many transactions happen when people are still doubtful, but they believe sufficiently. I don't know about you, but certainly if I bought only when I was certain, I would buy a lot less stuff than I currently do.

Trust is needed, of course, but at a certain level there are going to be various people they can trust.

If you go to book a hotel or get a tattoo you might find dozens of five star review options.
They will trust one of the providers MORE when it comes to providing the particular experience/transformation/service/product that they're looking for. Trust doesn't mean just testimonials and social proof. That's not what I was saying.

When you got to a restaurant do you buy the burger you trust the most is a burger?
You buy the burger you trust will provide you with the culinary experience that you desire.

I just think the 90% trust thing is over simplifying things.
@IlseVdG posted a really interesting article in another thread I'm following. Here's what the article tells us:

Money has become more of an intellectual artifact than a physical thing. Moreover, to an extraordinarily high degree, its current value is based on spiritual attitudes such as faith and trust. Burst these like a pin prick in a bubble and the value of money can collapse very quickly. Consult the Asian crisis of early 1998, or the collapse of the Russian ruble.

These two examples, Asia and Russia, indicate that more is involved in the value of money held on accounts these days than purely economic factors. In Asia, the lack of truly democratic accountability, the lack of transparency, the phenomenon of one-party rule and the rewarding by political authorities of relatives and cronies, and severe problems of transition upon the death of dictators, and other chiefly political factors undermined confidence in economic transactions. Too many unseen hands manipulate economic factors beneath the table. Imputed valuations collapsed.

In Russia, the repression of all religious and moral inspirations during seventy long years of Communist Party rule deeply injured the moral ethos of the nation, and the failure of the political system after 1991 to establish the rule of law; to suppress violence, extortion, murder, and gangsterism; and to tie the value of money to real and universally dispersed assets, gravely wounded trust in normal economic life. As Centesimus Annus points out (no. 42), to work for true human liberty, an economic system requires both a constitutional political system and a moral/ cultural system that protect human liberty, too. Without a supportive political system and a wisely shaped moral ethos, a creative and orderly economic life is not possible. Economics does not live by economics alone.
Without trust, confidence, faith or call it how you will - I can care less about what word you use, so long as you understand the concept behind - you won't have any transactions taking place. Free market economics is BUILT UPON trust. Remove trust, and there is no market at all. That's why trust is 90%.

All the other stuff you mention - logical reasons to buy, emotional reasons to buy, selling being the transference of emotions, bla bla - all that is true. But it's not the foundation. You're far better off understanding what the foundation deep down is - then you'll get 10x results out of your understanding of everything else.

In fact, you can try it. Try to read through my posts and apply the framework I suggest, using the concept I provided above. If you don't like calling it trust, call it something else. Call it certainty if you feel better that way. It doesn't matter. But try to apply the concept to your own marketing, and see how it changes how you see the marketing process, and whether or not it improves your results :)
 

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Haven't seen the answer to my question @Black_Dragon43 ? You wrote me yesterday, you are going to answer it later?

@RazorCut mentioned not to handle people as a commodity. The reason I was asking my questions above was exactly the same: People in my field felt often handled like

"I am a lead and my status is now stage 3 of 8 in an upselling process. Yes, I subscribed to that site, when I wanted this free (indeed very valuable) PDF sheet, but... now I receive constantly E-Mails which assume, that I have problem X. I don't have problem X, but I have problem Y. The solution recommended in the E-Mails does NOT fit my problem Y."

That fact led to another absurd trend:

Another guy is starting funnels with
"Ever felt misunderstood in an upselling process? You joined a tribe, but instead of listening to you, they send you spam or information which is not as usable as the first free gift? I see you. I feel you. I have been there. I am different. You can have my free book and I never e-mail you again. I pay even the shipping costs worldwide."
address form -> Checkout -> "Do you want to buy my course worth 2K for 500 dollars only? Last chance because I will retire next week!"

So if you are building funnels which are combined with the understanding of the marketing process (not only the technical part), how do you help a customer to break through the recognition patterns of THEIR customers? (recognition of the funnel itself)

I am not using funnels. Word-of-mouth-marketing is enough for me. But as I said: Many customers are unsure because they've already been tricked before.
 
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Haven't seen the answer to my question @Black_Dragon43 ? You wrote me yesterday, you are going to answer it later?
Yes, I am answering now. As I said:

This is sidetracking the discussion, so I will address it first before I address the more pertinent issues brought up here.
 

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This is sidetracking the discussion, so I will address it first before I address the more pertinent issues brought up here.
No need to get passive-aggressive. It's a discussion thread, not a marketplace post.

If you can't handle some feedback don't write it in hyperbolic copywriting 101 format.

It's a good thread but I was discussing some of my own thoughts.

90% OF DIRECT RESPONSE MARKETING IS ABOUT BUILDING TRUST
Then in the same post...

Because here's the thing. You don't need to trust me to take this information and START APPLYING IT to your own situation.

The results will speak for themselves.
So if they don't need to trust you why would they still take action with this post...?

This was my point with building up their level of certainty.

I wasn't going against what you said - I was adding to it.
 
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No need to get passive-aggressive. It's a discussion thread, not a marketplace post.
I agree, and I am open to discuss, sorry if it seemed otherwise. I appreciate your contribution - a lot of the things you have mentioned are important. It's just that I'm trying to use this thread to point to something more fundamental. That's all :)
 

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I agree, and I am open to discuss, sorry if it seemed otherwise. I appreciate your contribution - a lot of the things you have mentioned are important. It's just that I'm trying to use this thread to point to something more fundamental. That's all :)
All good, let's leave it at that. It is a solid thread and I definitely want to read what else you got to post.
 
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how do you handle the shift of customer perception in these funnels?
This is a super important question, and it gets at something very fundamental which I mentioned at the end of my last post about honesty.

When you first get started in online marketing, you may get the idea that being dishonest pays. That you can somehow "force" or "manipulate" people to give you their money.

You look at all the experts. Take this page:


Look at that... "FREE EBOOK", "This is truly a limited offer", "claim yours before they're gone", etc.

All these are lies. And the buyers (who are marketers & entrepreneurs) know this. At least most of them do. And yet, many still buy it. Why?

It goes back to the fact that they trust Russell can get the job done and knows what he's talking about. Why? Because of his reputation and achievements. They will look past all these tactics. In fact, they will rationalise them. They will interpret them as "look, Russell knows the game, he knows what he's doing. I'm one of the smart ones, and I see through this"

But you do an experiment. YOU try to sell an eBook using these tactics, to this same market. See who buys. Probably no one. Because in your case, they will look and say "This random guy is trying to be smart and fool me. Not gonna work"

So here's the difference - if you have the brand to back it up, you can use inferior tactics, and they can even turn to your advantage.

But you can't do that if you're new to the market.

So to answer your question generally - if you do it right, there will be no shift of customer perception.

Unfortunately, what most people do when they're getting started is that they see "the pros" put up upsells, downsells, etc. Then the next thing they do, is that they think "Ohh... hmmm... I need some upsells too. Let's put this (whatever it is - something that isn't relevant and isn't helping anyone). Let's also put this other older material that was formed of some blog posts I wrote 3 years ago. Hmm, and yeah, this can be a downsell"

That's how they come up with their funnels. Then they wonder why their customers never stick around. Of course they don't - they get the first offer, and then they land on a page which is marketing something that is essentially providing the same value and solving the same need. One time I advised someone on their funnel, and on step 1 they provided a 50% discount on let's say $300 worth of material, and then after the customer bought, they landed on a page which offered twice the same amount of goods, at literarily a discount that was 3% bigger. Who was going to buy that? No one. Who would feel fooled by that? Most people.

So don't try to fool your customers. There is no need to do it. You won't make more sales by doing that.
If you offer limited time discounts - then make sure they are limited time. Have the section with the discount disappear and have new sections appear after the time expires.

If you want to put multiple value steps in your funnel, make sure that each step builds on the previous one and provides additional value. Don't make your customer feel that you've only used the previous value step to get them to the next step, without actually providing any value. If you're going to teach your customer to do something on step 1, then teach them to do that. They don't need step 2 to do step 1. That is deception. Don't do that. The pain they have before getting step 1 must be solved when they get step 1. A new pain-point must then be revealed, and step 2 must be the solution.

Look at the way I've done it above. You know the sales funnel. Why should that be a problem for me? Why should it be a problem for a customer to know that there is a sales funnel with multiple offers?

If they know at each value step they are getting ADDITIONAL VALUE that will help them do more and achieve more of what they want to achieve, why is it a problem to let them know in advance? After all everything is a process - you can't get to the top straight away. You have to go through a learning process. That's just how things are.

So the sales funnel just is this process of taking the customer from lower value to higher value states. Emotional states if you wish. As you learn more, you naturally uncover new painpoints, and want to solve those too. And so on.

If a customer trusts but then he realizes during funnel/checkout "uh... looks like an upselling scheme" and the funnel itself becomes the showstopper of the selling process?
That's the problem. If they realise that, it means that at some step along your funnel, you haven't provided value. If I land on a page and you tell me you'll give me a free guide for whatever, and then when I download the guide you try to sell me something else to help me solve the same problem... then we have an issue. Because you used the free guide to BAIT me, instead of provide value to me.

"not another free book" (You just pay postal service.)
-"Live webinars" which are recorded obviously (User experience: You lied to me.),
-faked shortage of availability (of products in stock, available seats or appointments)
As I said, honesty matters. Whatever you do, be honest about it, and you're likely going to be safe.

Whether these techniques work or not also depends on the characteristics of your market. Buyers in certain markets are naturally skeptical and knowledgeable. For example, the make money online market. Most of these people will SEE if you use the tactics above.

In other markets, buyers aren't so aware. You can stick a countdown timer and say offer expires in 1 hour. I've seen many people build successful funnels in certain niches with these tactics. Even 6 and 7-figure funnels. So it does happen. But again, you have to understand your market and their psychology.

-Keywords which are used already by people selling crap, but necessary in your field... (Oh, I heard about that too from the guy who tried to trick me last time.),
This is an objection really - so you have to handle it the way you handle other objections. It's best to handle this in your copy. Your customer must understand that the something they heard about is important - in fact, that's why someone tried to fool them about it. If there was no gold somewhere, there would be no people trying to sell fool's gold either.
 

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There's a guy somewhere on Omaha, good'ol Warren Buffett that will nod to this.

Good point trust important and skews things. But not 100%.
 
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thanks for your answer and the time it took to write. :)
No worries, you're welcome. Sometimes it's hard to answer quickly for everything so you have to prioritize. I'm at the office running my agency as well, so I have limited time. I do try to answer all posts ASAP though :) Thanks for your patience.
 

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Are you saying everything you ever bought was because it was from the number #1 most trusted person you could have bought it from?
No. But when I haven't, I've usually regretted it. For instance I bought a pair of headphones recently and they're terrible. I read the reviews, of which there were only 12, and the brand was one I hadn't heard of.

However they fitted what I wanted and I couldn't (or was too lazy to) find any others on Amazon that fitted my needs. So I suspended my need for trust and took a leap of faith, which I regret. So I'll go back to my model of researching until my trust quota is satisfied.

I am sure you did trust the people you bought from but that doesn't mean you buy from everyone you trust. Otherwise, we would all be driving Volvos.
:-D Volvos are great, but there are some other great brands. I wouldn't buy an Alfa Romeo though, because of their reputation for breaking down, I just don't trust them :)

When "trust" starts meaning 100 different things then it isn't going to be useful as a label.
Very true, I mentioned above I have a particular level of trust I look for in a vendor. I'm sure that will be different for other people. However there are some universal truths when it comes to trust, which usually come from familiarity.

For instance if you were about to purchase something online, and they only did direct bank transfer and no other form of payment, your trust alarm bells would start ringing.

Maybe not 99%, but definitely high up there.

I definitely find it interesting the whole trust aspect, the more connected we become online, the more important trust becomes. For instance I'd 100% trust anything that you were selling on FLF because of the reputation you have built up here. Whereas someone who just waltzes on and starts selling me stuff will never get me to buy regardless of how great their product seems.

Good debates ;)
 

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You've tried Facebook/Google ads. You've tried Upwork. You've tried eCommerce. You've tried other side gigs. You've tried freelancing... And you aren't making the money you know you deserve, even after a year or more of trying to provide VALUE... You keep reading stuff, you've read MJ's books, you're hanging around this forum and others, but no dice.

Does that sound like you?

Have you ever STOPPED to ask why that is happening to you? Why is it that you're not getting paid as much as you deserve? Why is it that OTHERS are always making the $$$ and you're on the sidelines?

They say EXECUTION is king. Surely it is... but BAD execution won't get you to the promised land, I can assure you. You need to EXECUTE on the right thing.

Here's a little secret.

There is a group of direct response marketers online who are consistently making BIG BUCKS. And they are doing so because they know how to use (and sometimes abuse) the human mind.

These guys aren't always selling products that are the best... (although, to let you in on another secret, it's easy to have the best product when you're making the most money :) )... and yet, they are outselling everyone else.

How do I know?

I've built a 6-figure direct response agency. I've worked for many of those guys. I know what they know.

They understand the economic game. And until you start understanding how TRANSACTIONS work - WHY someone hands over their money - you will not make a living online.

So here's the BIG SECRET that can help you get started the SMART way:

The Foundation Of All Economic Transactions Is TRUST... People Give Money To People They TRUST... And They Hold It Away From People They Don't Trust

Why the 100% Money Back Guarantee? It builds trust.
Why do they say you have to believe in your product? If you don't believe, how do you expect others to TRUST you?
Why the FREE Lead Magnets? (provide value to gain trust).
Why do so many people here tell you to provide value? (to gain trust)
Why bother with testimonials? (gain trust)
Why bother with social proof? (gain trust)
Why bother with reciprocity? (gain trust)
Why SALES FUNNELS? (incrementally provide value to build more trust to be able to provide even MORE value)

So that's what it's all about...

90% OF DIRECT RESPONSE MARKETING IS ABOUT BUILDING TRUST
The other 10% is scarcity and the other fancy stuff that solicit an immediate response.

Because here's the deal... You may be hitting the market with HUGE VALUE. But people don't trust you.

And lack of trust = lack of sales.

So if you get stuck thinking that your problem is NOT ENOUGH value, you're never going to make it. The fact is most people provide more value than they are aware of.

And if YOU don't become conscious of your value, no one else will.

Let me ask you a question. If I'm trying to sell you right now a sales funnel for $15,000, are you gonna flip out your wallet and pay me?

No?

But I've built multiple 6-figure funnels... So I CAN provide that value to you.

So why won't you pay?

You don't have money... Good excuse. Why don't you go and ask all your friends and relative and the bank to loan it to you? With the 6-figure sales funnel I make for you, you'll make it 10x times back...

So lack of money isn't the reason for not paying me.

Why then?

Is it because you don't trust me?

Right. That's it.

So selling, especially when it comes to higher ticket items is 100% about trust. NOT about value. Value is needed just to build trust and provide a REASON for people to part with their money.

But if you start out with HUGE value... you won't close any sales just like that. You need to build trust first. And you build trust by providing value INCREMENTALLY.

So, if you want to start making BIG MONEY ONLINE, here's what you should do next.

Build a PROCESS of incrementally providing value to gain trust. And THEN provide more and more value (at higher prices). That's how I've done it. That's how the guys I work for have done it. That's how YOU can do it too.

If you do that, it won't be long until people will be ready to flip out their wallets and pay you $15K too.

Maybe you're asking why should you trust me on this? Well, don't. After all, I'm just a random dude on the internet, you don't know much about me, nor about my company. So the fact this stuff is coming from me, means nothing for you. Cool.

Because here's the thing. You don't need to trust me to take this information and START APPLYING IT to your own situation.

The results will speak for themselves.
Bitcoin is trustless, but don't trust me, verify
 

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