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What Business Owners On Facebook Are Missing

The Business Owners On Facebook Have This Problematic Belief

...that "if only" they can get some magic Traffic source set up, all of their ills will be fixed.

But more traffic doesn't solve your problems. You're looking in the wrong place.

All it does is point out all the other vulnerabilities and leaks in your processes.

It's like pumping a massive volume of water through a broken piping system: all these leaks are going to show up everywhere, suddenly, as the pressure blows those valves and connections.

Everything that is weak is immediately shown up.

"But..."
says the novice business owner,
"Isn't Traffic the holy grail? Isn't it true that if only I got more leads, I'd make more sales?"

Inconsistent results is all you'd ever see with that situation.

What Business Owners On Facebook Truly Need

In 2019 I entered a new-to-me, highly technical market. I knew no one. Within a very short time I started getting seen as an insider, someone who other people came to for advice. Wouldn't you like to do the same?

Let me tell you what most of the business owners on Facebook are missing. They:

  • don't know their target audience (though many lie and say they do...but press and you'll discover they have no idea how or why their target market will buy)
  • have no Revenue Plan (and the action plan that comes from it--where's that money going to come from?)
  • don't even have a specific money target
  • believe some kind of miraculous Traffic source is going to solve all of their problems
  • consider Systems to be some sort of dreamworld, "someday, Timmy," blue chip thing only big, successful companies have.

You don't need more Traffic.

What you really need is more Certainty.

The Power of Certainty In Business

If you're ready to admit what you've been doing until now is hoping things will magically work out, then you need to have a Certainty Consultation with me. How will we get you to this level of certainty, in knowing what you're doing will definitely get you results?

I will take you through the proven process of gaining certainty in yourself and with your business.

My background includes a 15 year corporate executive history, I was a plant manager at 25, and have run my own businesses for the past decade. Not just somebody who's "1% ahead of you". The kinds of things you'll learn from me... it's not the same regurgitated stuff you get fed online.

All leading to the outcome of you having, probably for the very first time, a real, certain, path to success.

If you're ready to be one of these fortunate individuals, claim your consultation.

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Your Barrier To Entry

barrier to entryWhat I've seen over the years here is people learn of an idea: the magic bullet (of the week). They put it into action ONCE and it doesn't work (for whatever reason...poor quality traffic; insufficient traffic--key issue, that one; lousy conversion tool; insufficient followup; poor target market definition; etc.)

And then they announce, "It DIDN'T WORK!!" to the world.

They really have convinced themselves that because they tried this thing one time, one way (imagine, trying only a single headline and then saying the whole project was a failure) it doesn't work. Ever. For anyone.

Then they jump on after the next shiny object...the new magic bullet of the week.

That's the silliness I'm fighting against here. It's rampant.

Many variables are involved in online marketing. Basic math is required to be good at online marketing. Based on the evidence I've seen, people want to remain ignorant of both and yet still be successful.

People: that ain't gonna happen.

Stick with something longer than three days. Test one variable change at a time. Yes, keep your eyes open for what works and what doesn't, and why.

Imagine there's a fence you have to jump.

That's the fence you need to get over to start making sales and being successful (BTW, did anyone ever tell you Making Sales is the RESULT, not the guts of, internet marketing? Kinda changes your perspective...there are all these things that need to be done and go right BEFORE you make a sale).

Now imagine all the wannapreneurs, here they are, running full tilt at that fence. Some of them don't even know the fence is there. Many underestimate how tall it is. But there they are, full of false and highly temporary enthusiasm based on some magic bullet they heard about and have awkwardly (how else are you gonna do it the first time) put into practice.

And WHAMMY!

Sure are a lot of broken bodies fallen at the foot of and atop that fence.

What Barrier To Entry Means For You

This is called, in professional marketing terminology, Barrier To Entry.

Most people lack the perspective, the stick-to-itiveness to pass that Barrier To Entry.

What does this mean for you, the individual?

Don't be like the herd. The herd is all beat up and broken in front of that fence.

If you can behave differently, and get over that fence, you'll be Inside.

And Inside is where the money is.

Once you figure it out...how to get over that fence, that Barrier To Entry...you keep that knowledge forever. You know what the process is.

Oh sure, some little techie this or that may change. A variable may need a dial or level adjustment. But you know what the variables are.

Stick with it. Measure and manage. Be intelligent.

Blindly and mindlessly following magic bullets is stupid. You'll end up crashed on the fence every time. Even if you do "succeed" you'll have no idea how to duplicate what you just did.

Barrier To Entry Today

This post was first published in 2016. Is there an update for 2021 / 2022?

My impression is that this concept is part of human nature. It is unchanging. We all know "the information is out there", often free of charge. Yet few people will knuckle down and do the research, personal learning and testing necessary to develop skill. They randomly try something once, and when it doesn't work everything related to it is a "scam".

Remember that this is a hurdle separating the wheat from the chaff, the successful from the wannapreneur. Those who expect success from magic beans, rather than developing skill through persistence, are welcome to their fate.

>> For business strategy that gets you past the barrier to entry, get the Sales On Fire program. <<

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What’s Wrong With Copywriting?

I've been studying copywriting and writing for clients for 25 years. In that time, I've seen some bad things I want to share with you...and I've evolved in my point of view about the subject. You should see that evolution in thinking, too. It'll save you a lot of frustration and probably some money.

The Main Thing Wrong With Copywriting

The main problem with copywriting is caused by two factors: the buyer and the seller. You ought to laugh because those are the key factors that cause problems in all poorly-accomplished sales, but I'm deadly serious here. Both parties come into the arrangement with utter misunderstandings of what's going to happen.

The buyer (usually a business owner or marketing manager) believes they are getting a magic bullet that will "get me more customers."

The seller (the writer) believes they are hot stuff and will "get you more customers."

That's where I was, from my start in 1995 through some time in 2012.

And I wasn't wrong. Not exactly. I mean, my copy is a heck of a lot better than what's typically on somebody's sales page or in their letter. So its performance is sure to be superior.

pieces of flair office space bare minimum what's wrong with copywriting

"What do you think of a person who only does the bare minimum?" Office Space, 1999: Fair Use

So Where's The Problem?

Just one problem: Traffic.

See, copy is about Conversion. That's the second piece of the money equation. And without Traffic, ie. eyeballs sent to view the conversion tool, the copy doesn't have much of a chance of accomplishing anything.

In the early days I would take on a job because somebody asked, I liked the topic, and they waved money in my direction. This is where most writers are at and what the market is used to.

On the buying side, the business owners and marketing managers are accustomed to this arrangement. "I need to get more customers," they say to themselves, and hire a writer. But they miss the fact that a good, steady, pre-qualified traffic source needs to be hooked up to that shiny new conversion tool...or there's no chance of success. And the writer, happy to be paid for their work, doesn't ask.

What Does This Misunderstanding Lead To?

This state of mutual mystification leads to what I call the "Throw The Copy Over The Wall And Run" approach to copywriting.

The buyer, believing copywriting is a commodity service, makes a low investment in the new conversion tool.

The seller, despite supposedly being an expert on positioning and persuasion, doesn't know what else to do when selling their services and accepts.

Can you read between the lines here and get a feel for the level of commitment to the project from both sides?

The buyer is expecting a magic return on a low investment: they're playing the lottery.

The seller has no motivation to stick around and work that project into something powerful: sure, they'll put their best effort into the draft they submit, but why should they continue to work on a project they haven't been paid much for?

Thus the writer does a little Q&A, some research, cranks out the copy in the fastest possible time, and throws it over the wall to the buyer.

"So long! Good luck!" comes their over-the-shoulder call as they run away in search of the next client.

And why shouldn't they?

What Needs To Change With Copywriting

The buyer hasn't made much of a commitment. As a result, neither has the seller. (I'm reminded of the quote from Office Space: "What do you think of a person who only does the bare minimum?" This applies to both parties.)

This right here is what's wrong with copywriting. Lack of commitment to a specific, measurable outcome.

I was conducting an audio interview of a fellow writer who was doing better than I was—he was getting into better business arrangements than I was, and works in niches I don't touch, too; maybe I should learn from that heh heh—some years back when I heard him say something that confirmed a concept that I'd understood for awhile but hadn't clearly articulated:

The buyer must demonstrate commitment to solving the problem and getting to a specific outcome.

In doing so, a good writer will recognize this commitment, and match it with their own effort.

In plain terms, what I already knew was that the first effort of a writer is likely to either fail or not be the best achievable result. That if the writer could stick around for just one, two, or three more iterations of the copy, the performance could be increased dramatically.

But What's Really Happening With Copywriting?

But what was happening? In reality, you know what has been going on. The buyer tries to hire for the lowest possible price; the seller, having little commitment, gives their best effort within the short period they can afford to give the project their attention, then moves on.

Over the wall and run.

Both get ONE chance to get it right.

And, if you've been reading carefully, you'll have noticed neither understands the nature of the money equation. That you need both Traffic AND Conversion to make it work. Writing alone doesn't accomplish anything.

The buyer believes that new copy alone will do the job.

The seller has tunnel vision and the cocksure belief that their copy is a moneymaker.

But where is the traffic?

Whether You're Hiring or Writing, Start Asking This Question

This is why my first question to prospective clients is: "Do you have a solid pre-qualified traffic source ready to go?"

If the answer is "Uh, I haven't thought about that..." or "My Facebook ads guy will figure that out," or "I'll be hiring a launch manager and they'll do that," it's an instant No from me.

I will not risk my reputation on an unproven idea.

I will not risk my reputation on a project without a good traffic source.

I will not risk my reputation on a client who can't afford traffic.

These issues appear frequently. Too frequently.

The business owner gets frustrated. I'm sure they go hire some low-priced writer after I tell them No, and are happy with the copy they get. After all, it's like having a template writer redo your resume: you get that "new car smell" for awhile. But not long after, when you don't have any traffic and nobody sees the thing, you discover it isn't worth very much.

The Dumb Arrangement That Makes Buyers and Writers Mad At Each Other

Buyers will get mad at writers at this point. And the writers may respond by getting mad back at them. But the outcome of the copy is not the writer's doing. Both bear responsibility for getting into a dumb arrangement: frankly, the copy didn't get enough views to determine whether it's any good or not.

What buyers and sellers need to do in the world of copywriting is to commit to a longer term relationship. Longer than the first draft the writer throws over the wall.

I have seen so many newbies over the years set up a funnel, put all the pieces in place, and then be shocked when something doesn't work.
The funnel breaks at every turn! The ads don't convert and you have to fix them. Then the opt-in page doesn't work well and you have to fix that. Then the email sequence doesn't persuade the readers to visit the sales page. You have to fix those. Then the sales page doesn't turn visitors into buyers...and you have to fix that.

The funnel falls down at every stage. Success requires both the buyer and the seller to stick around: for the business owner and the writer to commit to an outcome. Agree at the start what the statistics will be for a successful result, and commit getting there. This means the buyer has to invest in the seller so that the seller can invest in the iterative work.

The Change That Needs To Be Made In Copywriting

The writer can no longer throw the copy over the wall and run. They have to stick around. And the owner has to make it worth their while.

As a writer, this is the very reason you must get out of the scrape-and-chase mode. If you're always on the hunt for the next low budget client because you have to survive, you can never make this kind of commitment (buyers, are you paying attention?).

Up front fees are not the only solution. Royalties or a percentage of gross are other options—but, business owners, the writer has to TRUST YOU. Work on that.

This is what's wrong with copywriting. A basic misunderstanding of the nature of the work, what outcome will result, and what is required to succeed.

Needed and typically missing: a pre-qualified traffic source with sufficient quantity to reach the revenue goal.

Needed and typically missing: commitment by both sides to adjustment of the process until the goal is reached.

Let's get rid of the "Throw the copy over the wall and run" approach and fix what's wrong with copywriting. Please. Writers, will you commit to ensuring both factors above that have been missing are present in projects going forward? Those hiring writers, will you commit to the straightforward changes to hiring and making use of copywriters so that we can all work together on making the money you desire?

Update To The Original 2017 Post

In the five years since this post was first written my perception is that things have gotten better for those with experience, and worse for the newbies.

Experienced product creators and writers who have been the online marketing field for this period have in general figured out what's wrong with copywriting. Most know they need to proceed with a commitment to targeted results. The days of "shoot your shot, copywriter, and let's hope for the best" are gone for them.

But those lacking experience seem to be in an even worse position than newbies of a half-decade ago. The marketplace is much more crowded as internet marketing has moved from a weird thing a relatively small number of people engage in to a more mainstream, heavily marketed "make money online" opportunity. As more writers and more product creators move into the marketplace, both lack discernment and do not look for or learn the lessons of the past. As a reality check I recommend you share this post with those you know.

>> Jason Kanigan is a business strategist and copywriter. Book a call with Jason to discuss your project. <<