Probably not, eh? To tell you the truth, neither is mine.(Yet.) But let me tell you about one that is.Mirabilis. (Means "wonderful, notable, or remarkable")Mirabilis was purchased in 1998 by AOL for a...
Probably not, eh? To tell you the truth, neither is mine. (Yet.) But let me tell you about one that is.
Mirabilis. (Means "wonderful, notable, or remarkable")
Mirabilis was purchased in 1998 by AOL for around 300 million bucks. Mirabilis was a small business with only one software program, but it was worth millions to America On Line.
So what was Mirabilis' software?
ICQ (I Seek You) software, as you probably know, enables anyone on the Internet to engage in chats or to personally contact anyone else who is online at the moment and a user of this software.
The most interesting part of the story is that Mirabilis doesn't sell ICQ software. They give it away! For free! It is available to anyone who wants it. All you have to do is go to their site or a multitude of other sites and download it.
As a matter of fact, Download.com reported that for the week of January 27, 2002, 1,044,176 people download ICQ. And that's just from their site!
That means that by providing ICQ software for free, Mirabilis receives over 1 MILLION new contacts for their company through Download.com alone.
What if your Internet business could get just one tenth or one hundredth of those results? What if you could receive just 10,442 new contacts weekly without having to spend a penny in advertising? Would that help your bottom line? (Duh!)
Mirabilis is an Internet success story if there ever was one. They can also be an example of success to us in our own online businesses.
Although there are lots of web marketing techniques (ezine advertising, banner ads, Goto.com, et al), the most cost- effective marketing is free advertising.
The absolute best thing that you can promote online is software. It is the easiest thing for any small business to get involved with and possibly achieve the proverbial "overnight success".
Think about it for moment. What does absolutely every computer user need? They need software! What has made Bill Gates the richest man on the planet? Software! If you own a computer, you buy software!
However, writing software may not be your cup of tea. Perhaps staring at thousands of lines of programming code for hours on end doesn't appeal to you. No worries. You are in good company. It doesn't really appeal to a lot of other people (including me) either.
The product that runs a close second to software is information. Information can have a high value and is low cost to produce. Information can sell for 10 times or more its cost to produce an distribute. People don't pay for the number of words you write. They pay for the value that the information represents to them.
Now, with the Internet, you can sell downloadable information products. You can set up your site so that when someone orders online the product is immediately made available to them for download. Your customers don't have to wait days to receive their products. They can have them NOW!
The Internet is the greatest instant gratification machine ever invented!
The value of downloadable information sales doesn't end here though. By offering the information online, it makes it much easier to update your products and it eliminates potential shipping problems.
One advantage of electronic information products is that you can use a downloadable information product as a freebie on your site to constantly attract thousands of new prospects for your paid products and services.
Follow the example that Mirabilis has set: create a free information product and offer it to thousands of webmasters to use as a lead generator for their own businesses.
You can come in contact with thousands of potential customers every week while these webmasters are generating additional leads or even sales at their site using your information product as a free bonus. It can be a Win-Win situation for everyone involved. The webmasters win by adding more value to their sites. You win by being able to contact more potential customers.
Nearly 35% of our current business is still being generated by our free information products that are being given away on hundreds of sites. It has turned out to be the most valuable promotion we have ever done.
What does this mean for you? It means that you need to get to work ASAP producing your own free traffic generator for your site. Create something that your prospects would be interested in and offer it for free from your site. I have tested many different free traffic generators and none of them have even come close to the results produced by this one.
What information products to offer? Free eBooks, while so popular as to be ubiquitous, are now so commonplace that they're losing their effectiveness, much like banner ads, whose clickthrough rates have dropped 1600% in the last couple of years.
An emerging promotional tool that bears investigating is the e-seminar.
Best Regards, Robert Brents, "The 80/20 Guy" http://www.RobertBrents.com For your free four-lesson e-seminar, How To Write, Publish, Market & Promote Profitable How-To Manuals, email mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org Copyright 2001 Robert Brents and Blue Gecko Press.