Read 20 Free Excerpts of the #1 Bestselling “Cowbell Principle”

Posted on Posted in Career Guides, Life Hacks, Teamwork, Thought Leadership

final front cover ony outlineThe Cowbell Principle went to #1 bestseller in three categories and #1,209 overall on Kindle! Buy it today for just $2.99 on Kindle. Anyone can read a Kindle on most major smartphones, tablets and computers with their free apps- click to get yours.

We’ve partnered to get 20 key excerpts out there for you to read for free. Take a look and read one!

We’re super grateful to know so many amazing authors, speakers, entrepreneurs and bloggers… those below are both amazing people and generous, too.

10 Critical Rules for Brainstorming – posted on Aweber.com’s blog by Lynette Young
Analytics And The Limits Of Knowledge – on Scott Monty’s blog
How Emergencies & Tragedies Create Innovation – on Adele Cehr’s Epic PR blog
How Playing Your Cowbell Will Make Billions of People Want You – on Joel Comm’s blog
How To Be Uniquely Valuable – on the Internet Marketing Ninjas blog- thanks to Jim Boykin and Ann Smarty!
How To Get More Results Out Of Yourself! – on Alex Harris’s blog
How to Get So Much Career Momentum You’ll Always Have Work – on The Huffington Post
How To Keep Fear From Ruining Your Career – on Maddie Grant’s SocialFish
How To Succeed By Defying Mediocrity – on Thom Singer’s blog
How To Supercharge Your Career & Marketing With The Innovation Mindset – on Garrison Wynn’s website
Is Your Talent A Cowbell or a Bagpipe? – on Christina Dave’s PR For Anyone
The Perfect Team Is Not Perfect – on Social Media Explorer, thanks Jay Kelly and Heather Dopson!
What Google Trends Can Do For Your Career – on Jay Baer’s Convince & Convert, thanks also to Jess Ostroff!
When The Dumbest Idea Is The Best One – on SEOchat, thanks Ann Smarty!
The Secret of How Geniuses Innovate – on Bryan Kramer’s Blog
Why Irrational Optimism Makes So Much Sense – on PrideStaff’s Blog
Why Success Requires Sacrifice – also on PrideStaff’s Blog
Why We Undervalue Our Biggest Talents – on Charlie Poznek’s The Boomer Business Owner
Why You Need To Know “The Why” Of Your Business Or Career – on Kerri Konik’s Brandscape Atelier
Even The Super-Loner Batman Had a Mentor… Why Don’t You? – on Raven Tools’ blog, thanks Jon Henshaw and Nicolette Beard!
Why We Should Thank All The Haters – on Kim Garst’s blog

Enjoy!

 

The Top 2 Causes of New Business Failure And How To Beat Them

Posted on Posted in Entrepreneurship, Internet Marketing Strategy, Social Media Strategy, Thought Leadership

invisible400The Top 2 Causes of Failure for Entrepreneurs Are…

  1. Lack Of Funding: If you don’t have enough running capital for 3-6 months of startup, you’ll probably go out of business before you’re profitable.
  2. Lack Of Sales: If not enough people are buying from you to keep going, you’ll have to shut down.

You need money, honey. A Lack of Sales typically is caused by one of two problems:

  1. No One Knows You Exist: A lot of businesses feel invisible. You can’t sell if you’re invisible. You need more awareness- more publicity- more buzz! And of course, maybe we’re exaggerating. Some people know about you, but not enough.
  2. Product/Service No One Wants: You can’t put lipstick on a pig. No way to fix this except move on to a better idea. It’s better to test the market before committing a ton of time and money to what could be a BIG OL’ DUD.

A lot of entrepreneurs make the mistake of selling something people don’t want. They’re selling [what they think people need], not [what people want]. Don’t do that! Experts make that mistake a lot. I’ve been guilty of it myself! We do it because we think as experts we know exactly what these poor people need… But they don’t care. They want what they want. Even if we’re right, people don’t want to eat their vegetables. Don’t treat your customers like you’re their mom and they’re bratty kids. Do this instead: SELL people what they WANT… GIVE them what they want AND what they need. This makes it easy to over-deliver, which is a good way to keep customers happy. “Wow, they gave me a ton!” For example, Flintstone Vitamins: Kids want cartoons and sweets. Moms want kids to take vitamins. They each delicious-tasting Flintstones vitamins, and everybody wins. FREEDOMVITAMINS

How To Use Facebook To Ensure Entrepreneurial Success

There are five things you can do that will help a great deal- not only to avoid a lemon but to help you succeed with your marketing from the start.

  1. Identify Your Potential Buyers
  2. Research & Understand Them With Facebook Audience Insights (you need a Facebook ad account for that)
  3. Test Your Product/Service Ideas And Throw Out The Bad Ideas
  4. Test Your Slogans And Find Most Effective Ones
  5. Test Your Unique Selling Proposition

testbusinessideas

You’ll Live Or Die According To Your U.S.P.

Do you have a Unique Selling Proposition (USP) for your new company or service? Here’s how to create one. Tell us in 20 words, how is your company, product or service different from and better than the competition? What does it do for me? What’s the primary benefit? Is it for me or someone else? Here’s the formula: “[Company] is the [superlative:only/first/premier/best/fastest/biggest] [what] that delivers [what benefit] to [which people]?” For example, Brian Carter is the only social media speaker who delivers practical digital marketing takeaways, comedy-club level entertainment and inspiring motivation to marketers and business owners. Isn’t he amazing?

3 Things To Test With Facebook Ads BEFORE Going To Market

  • Test Your Product/Service Ideas: Do people really want it, not just need it? The ultimate test is to sell it, but if you can get clicks on an ad, that’s a good indicator. If you can get them to opt into something (to qualify for the beta when it’s ready, for example) that’s even better. And my favorite is Kickstarter, because you get paid for something before you’re ready to sell it.
  • Test Your Slogans: Which ones really resonate with your market? Finding out what works here will help you write your marketing copy later, and may help you prioritize how your develop your product or service now. What features or options do people care about? Getting verification on this increases your chance of success.
  • Test Your Unique Selling Proposition: Is your USP working as well as you expected? Try three different versions.

You can also survey your market with surveymonkey. Here’s one I did while working on new online course ideas: survey1 Good thing I did it, because some of the things I thought would be number one weren’t at the top of anyone’s priority list. survey2 I used the results to come up with some course ideas, and then I tested some potential course names with Facebook ads. I’m not going to show you the best ones, because I don’t want anybody creating a similar idea until mine’s ready! But I’ll show you some of the worst results: fbad2

Find Out The Demographics Of The Most Interested People

You can even use Facebook ad tests like this to find out which demographics respond best to your ideas. Whether you use that targeting later on, or just use that intel in developing your product or service, it’s supervaluable to know the age, gender and location of your best potential buyers. For example, from a tests we did a couple years ago for a financial-niche Facebook app: demographics What could you have tested about your current company? What can you test about your next project to avoid wasting time and money and start off on a stronger footing? Ok, so go do it!

URGENT: How Freelancers Can Get Clients & Grow As Thought Leaders

Posted on Posted in Business Development, Thought Leadership
thoughtleaders
Do you aspire to be a thought leader like one of these folks? Let’s make it happen!

Social media freelancers! Digital marketing specialists! Bloggers!

Do you want to grow as a thought leader while boosting your freelance revenue?

The Carter Group seeks to partner with five to seven freelancers (marketing, advertising, PR). Together, we’re going to build a bigger, more dynamic blog and help you acquire new inbound business under our well known brand.

  • We’ll help you grow your thought leadership.
  • You’ll get a bigger following, eminence as an expert, more exposure, and career-building Q&A meetings with Brian.
  • We’ll help you with writing, pricing, closing sales and collecting payments. Yes, we’ll take a percentage for doing that, but you’ll keep most of it! All you have to do is create content and deliver your services.

We’re going to blow people’s minds with this blog- not just useful content and entertaining content, but content that attracts new business. Leveraging Brian’s existing email lists, social accounts and an advertising budget, we aim to become one of the most important blogs in digital marketing. It’s going to be fun, too- because we love brainstorming content ideas and testing them- all to get more buzz, interaction and clients.

Criteria: To qualify, you must be experienced at blogging, Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter. Writing skills and experience are extremely important. We’re looking to take intermediate folks to an advanced level, not beginners.

If you’re interested, fill out this form and we will contact you. It’s now or never, as we’ve already filled half the spots and are starting soon!

We’ll be starting editorial meetings (via Google Hangouts) in early June, so now’s the time to apply!

🙂

URGENT: How Freelancers Can Get Clients & Grow As Thought Leaders

Posted on Posted in Business Development, Thought Leadership
thoughtleaders
Do you aspire to be a thought leader like one of these folks? Let’s make it happen!

Social media freelancers! Digital marketing specialists! Bloggers!

Do you want to grow as a thought leader while boosting your freelance revenue?

The Carter Group seeks to partner with five to seven freelancers (marketing, advertising, PR). Together, we’re going to build a bigger, more dynamic blog and help you acquire new inbound business under our well known brand.

  • We’ll help you grow your thought leadership.
  • You’ll get a bigger following, eminence as an expert, more exposure, and career-building Q&A meetings with Brian.
  • We’ll help you with writing, pricing, closing sales and collecting payments. Yes, we’ll take a percentage for doing that, but you’ll keep most of it! All you have to do is create content and deliver your services.

We’re going to blow people’s minds with this blog- not just useful content and entertaining content, but content that attracts new business. Leveraging Brian’s existing email lists, social accounts and an advertising budget, we aim to become one of the most important blogs in digital marketing. It’s going to be fun, too- because we love brainstorming content ideas and testing them- all to get more buzz, interaction and clients.

Criteria: To qualify, you must be experienced at blogging, Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter. Writing skills and experience are extremely important. We’re looking to take intermediate folks to an advanced level, not beginners.

If you’re interested, fill out this form and we will contact you. It’s now or never, as we’ve already filled half the spots and are starting soon!

We’ll be starting editorial meetings (via Google Hangouts) in early June, so now’s the time to apply!

🙂

Business Building Live Interview with Jay Baer

Posted on Posted in Entrepreneurship, Social Media, Social Media Strategy, Thought Leadership

In this second episode of my series interviewing entrepreneurs, I am very excited to present Jay Baer. You probably have heard of him. He’s super smart and does everything with the highest quality and taste. Jay started five multi-million dollar businesses from scratch. He’s an acclaimed keynote speaker, entrepreneur, technology investor, social media and digital marketing consultant and author. He’s consulted for 29 of the Fortune 500. Author of two best-selling business books. Named one of America’s top 3 social media consultants. Runs the world’s #1 content marketing blog. Has given speeches to hundreds of organizations, including the US State Department and the US Olympic Committee.

Learn how Jay grew his business and what principles guide him today.

Why Books Can Be One of the Worst Products to Sell Online

Posted on Posted in Books, Product Launches, Thought Leadership, Training

I had an interchange recently with a fan, and first, it’s really awesome to have fans 🙂 I’ve said this same kind of thing about books to a bunch of people over the last few years, but I’ve never blogged or ebooked about it. And the math part of it is something everybody looking to do ecommerce online should look at, so here it is.

And by the way, I know there are exceptions- Jay Baer has a great slideshare about how he drove Youtility to bestseller status. But that’s an outlier- an exception (and required a big investment that he hopes will pay off in the next three years, you’ll find if you read the slideshare). If you want a product to sell that typically is successful, books aren’t it.

THE FAN: I want to promote my books on facebook. If the sales hit a million or a minimum thousand, I will share 40% of revenue with you. Here are my books on Amazon: REDACTED
Mar 14, 01:13PM

ME: Thanks for reaching out! Books are a very tough product to sell because the author usually has a really low margin. I am happy to work with you on a services basis- if you’re interested, I can send our services and fees info.
Thanks! Brian
Mar 14, 07:23PM

THE FAN: Thank you Brian for your input. I would love to coordinate with you on other projects. I’m into self publishing at this time and promoting my business books. Will let you know about other businesses………
Mar 15, 10:01AM

ME: Cool, please do. With self published books it’s a bit easier, because you can choose to have a bigger profit margin- but Amazon doesn’t have granular tracking to allow for optimization- you could optimize it if you’re selling it in a way that does allow for advertising conversion code.
Brian
Mar 15, 10:04AM

THE FAN: But I’m a great fan of yours would like to work with you on some joint venture. I’ve written some 4 to 5 books. At this time the book sales is rather slow. And I’m hopeful that it will boost up with time. If you can play some magic with these kindle published books then I can share half of my royalties with you for a considerable time as you like. I’m making my presence on G+, Pinterest, and other channels. However, It will be nice if some sound marketing strategy is in place. I’m also working as a freelance writer and editor on oDesk and Elance and I’ve a proven track record of successful projects. Anyway its nice talking to you.
Mar 15, 10:15AM

ME: It’s a math thing. Figure out your possible cost-per-sale range and see if your profit margin can tolerate that.

  1. What percent buys? Say 5% of the visitors buy, and that would be an amazing conversion rate (CR).
  2. What’s the lowest possible cost per click (CPC) on Facebook (the cheapest targetable mass traffic ad solution)? Maybe if you’re amazing it’s $0.20
  3. Cost per sale is CPC/ CR… $0.20 / 5% = $4.00 as spend per sale; Your books would have to be at least $15-20 to have some wiggle room on those numbers, because it could be as bad as 1% conversion, $0.50 CPC = $50 per sale.

That’s why it’s so hard to sell really low price products at scale.
Brian

That’s why you see the infoproducts guys selling things for anywhere from $97 to $2,000 – not that I support that; a lot of these are people using hype and manipulation techniques to take advantage of buyers (who often are trying to buy their way around laziness)- read my blog post about Internet Training Ethics.

It’s just the ROI math of ad spend and profit margin.

You at least need to make enough to break even on your ad spend- and that’s fine to do if you’re investing in your long term career. For me, the reason I write ebooks and give them away and advertise them, is that they’re a loss leader. If I spend say $500 to promote an ebook but it brings in a few clients that yield me thousands in revenue, that’s a good investment.

Business Building Video Interview with Michael Stelzner of Social Media Examiner

Posted on Posted in Entrepreneurship, Thought Leadership

You’ve heard of Social Media Examiner and the Social Media Marketing World conference?

Michael Stelzner launched Social Media Examiner in October of 2009 and it has exploded. Last year more than 7.5 million visited the site, and they email tips daily to more than 230,000 people. Mike is also the author of two books (Launch & Writing White Papers) and is host of the Social Media Marketing Podcast. He also founded the parenting blog My Kids’ Adventures.

I interviewed him on the topic of Business Building: starting from scratch or how to grow an existing business, specifically in the digital age. Great answers. If you run a business or are thinking about starting one, watch this now!

Brian Carter – Essential Reading

Posted on Posted in Internet Marketing Strategy, Social Media Strategy, Strategy, Thought Leadership
Hi! If you’re new to digital marketing or social media or just to Brian Carter, you ought to take a look at this “required reading” list. Things by Brian:
.
  • Free ebook: Contagious Content: What People Share on Facebook and Why They Share It – If you want to create Facebook posts that get shared like crazy, execute the takeaways from this research study on your own Facebook posts.
  • Free ebook: The SuperPost Swipe File™ – The best posts we’ve ever run for Facebook clients and how you can adapt them to your own business to massively increase engagement on your Facebook page. Most posts get about 1% engagement rate (percentage of those who see the post and like it, increasing the visibility of that post). These posts received 10% to 16% engagement rates.
  • Free benchmarks: How do you know if you’re getting good enough Facebook results? Or how awesome it could get? Read this.
  • Free marketing guide: Without great copywriting, nothing you do will sell. No one will care. To write persuasively and get more sales, you need marketing molecules.
  • Book: The Like Economy (2nd Edition): How Businesses Make Money With Facebook – If you’re new to Facebook marketing, want to make sure your strategy is sound, or want to get better at the tactics that get the best results, read this first. This is the best book if you want to get the most bang for your buck with Facebook. To take it even further, get into my Facebook Leads and Sales Machine training course.
  • Book: The Cowbell Principle: Career Advice on How to Get Your Dream Job and Make More Money – Just like Will Ferrell’s goofy cowbell player in the Saturday Night Live sketch “More Cowbell,” you already possess a unique value that people have a fever for – your cowbell. For individuals, a cowbell is a talent or gift. For businesses, it’s a durable competitive advantage. The key to happiness and success is knowing who you are and how you can make other people happy. A cowbell gives your value to people and they love you for it.
Other books I recommend. Of hundreds of non-fiction books I’ve read, I believe these are the most important. If you already like my writing and speaking, these will take you even further: