In my opinion, viral marketing strategies are the best ways to explode traffic, subscriber opt-in rates and sales for the Internet Marketer.
I will show you how to create a short report or eBook, and you don’t even have to write any of it yourself if you don’t want to, let it loose on the net, and watch as it generates highly targeted traffic to your websites for years to come.
You’ll give away your report for free, with resell rights, and it will then be picked up by other internet marketers, given away, sold, and generally distributed and read by people around the net, this is the viral effect, hence the name viral marketing.
Inside your report will be links and everyone that reads your report will see these links. It’s even possible to make money directly from your report. You can use it to send traffic to your own products, affiliate products, your newsletter, membership site, or any site you wish! Just image the possibilities.
In the past I’ve generated enough traffic from a single viral report to build a mailing list of five hundred subscribers in no time flat. It’s not difficult, but it does require a bit of effort to get the ball rolling.
Couldn’t I sell my report instead?
Of course you could, but the whole point of viral marketing is THE LINKS which will be in your free report. Yes some people will come along, get your free report, and sell it themselves, but that’s okay. That’s what we want! Sure, you could probably make some money by just selling the report yourself. But it’s not the best way to do it, and it takes away from the “viral” affect we hope to achieve. We want our report to be seen by as many people as possible in order to gain maximum exposure, and that’s why our report should be free with resell and give-away rights.
But there’s another issue to consider first.
Why Being Free Isn’t Enough
Many people believe that just because you’re giving away your report for free then it will become viral all on it’s own. I think this is a mistake, and here’s why:
When we launch our free report onto the net we’re looking for as many people as possible to resell it, give it away as a bonus, etc. As we just discussed, this is how the viral effect is created. However, a lot of “free” reports are of very poor quality. They may contain poorly written, outdated or even just wrong information. To top it off, they are loaded with link after link after link.
Put yourself in the shoes of another internet marketer. Someone comes along and they offer you a new and fantastic report for free. They even tell you that you’re free to resell it and distribute it as you please. Sweet! If you’re anything like a lot of internet marketers then you’ll be stoked that someone wants to give you a new product for free. But then you check it out, find that the book is only 5 pages long, contains way too many links, and is just full of irrelevant or incorrect information. Would you be happy to sell that? What about pass it on to your subscribers? Me neither.
This is why your report needs to contain high-quality, useful information that you’d be happy to give to a member of your own family or your best friend. Your report doesn’t have to be that long, but it does need to be some of your best work. This is very important if you want your report to go viral. Don’t worry! This isn’t that hard. I’m going to show you exactly how you can do this on your own.
People Are Lazy
The other thing to always keep in mind is that people are lazy! Internet marketers aren’t excluded from the lazy bunch. I often see reports being given away that are of very high quality and could do really well. However, the marketer doesn’t take the time to make a sales letter for the product. If someone wants to grab their report and resell it themselves (or give it away to build their mailing list) then they would have to write their own sales/squeeze page. Design their own graphics, create sales copy, etc.
While some people will do this, the vast majority won’t, simply because they are lazy, and probably have several other projects going on and don’t have time to do all the required steps. They will simply find a product that offers these things and sell it instead.
But if you give them a ready-made sales page you’ll easily increase the number of people who will resell or give away your report. You need to give them everything they need. Make it as easy as possible for them. The more people that distribute your report the better.
Choose a Topic For Your Report
Your viral report will only do well if it is on a subject people want to read about. There’s no point in researching and writing (or outsourcing) a report only to find out that your market isn’t even interested in it. It’s also important to select a subject that is related to the products or sites you want to promote. Of course all this goes almost without saying, but how do you actually go about selecting a ‘hot’ topic for your report?
You should firstly consider what sites you want to promote.
Let’s say I want to promote an eBook on ‘how to make money from affiliate marketing.’ I actually sell this on one of my websites for $27 (this could just as easily be a product I’m promoting as an affiliate). In this case a good viral report might be ‘how to make money with affiliate marketing’ or ’20 great affiliate tips.’ These titles aren’t very good and I don’t recommend you actually call your report any of these names, but it gives you an idea of what my report would be about.
What if there’s no ‘obvious’ topic for your report?
Let’s say you’re operating in the internet marketing niche. I regularly browse through internet marketing forums, and from what I’ve seen the following are also VERY hot topics on the forums:
– Social Network Marketing
– Viral Marketing
– Product Creation
– Article Writing
You could easily create a report around any of these subjects.
In fact you can even use a viral report as a complete money making system on its own. I don’t currently operate in the gardening niche, but I could start making money from it today. All I’d need to do is find some gardening related products which I could act as an affiliate for, and then insert some links to those products into my viral report.
You might already know what’s ‘hot’ in the niche you’re currently in or interested in, but if you don’t it’s very easy to find out. Simply go to Google and type in “your niche + forum” and “your niche + blog.” This will locate forums and blogs in your niche. Take your time and spend an hour or two browsing through the forum discussions and blog posts to see what people are talking about. Usually you will quickly be able to decide on a hot topic for your report just by looking at the hot forum topics.
Look for problems or questions that people seem to be having in that niche. If a particular topic or issue seems to crop up regularly then it’s a good sign! If you find a particular thread has five pages of posts then that’s a great sign too! Equally, you should be looking at websites and blogs. Basically any site that might point you towards what’s hot in your niche.
Research and Create Your Report
First, before we go any further, let me say that it’s not absolutely necessary to write the report yourself. I personally love writing, and I’m happy to do it. But I also know that many of you are not. Some people just hate writing, or they’re not good at it, or they just don’t have the time. And that’s absolutely fine because you still have several options:
Go to a site like http://www.getafreelancer.com or http://www.elance.com There are many more too.
You’ll usually find someone who will write you a quality report for a reasonable price. Many will perform the whole process for you. Everything from research, to writing it, and even producing a sales page. Make sure you get a sample of a candidates previous work before you agree to let them take on the project. There are some quite bad writers out there, and you could end up with a product that is next to useless unless you completely re-write it, and that rather defeats the object of outsourcing it in the first place! Take a bit of time though and you should find someone who does a good job, and is reliable to work with. In my experience most are.
Another great source for outsourcing is http://www.warriorforum.com. Go to the WSO section or the warriors for hire section and there’s usually several people there offering to write you a report for a reasonable price.
This is a fantastic way to create a report. If you can find an expert in your niche that is willing to answer some questions on your topic then you’ll have the basis for a wonderful report and:
– You won’t have to write it
– You won’t have to do any research
– It’ll have instant impact because you can put the other person’s name on there who (if you choose wisely) will be a recognized name in your niche.
– It won’t cost you anything
Getting someone to agree to do an interview is not as hard as it sounds either. It’s an easy ‘sell’ because the other person gains free exposure from the product you both create together. You’ll probably have to let the other person include a few links in your report back to their own websites, but that’s a small price to pay to have a quality report written for you for free by an expert.
Find experts in your niche and send them an email asking if they’d like to do an interview with you. Make it clear that they’ll gain tons of free exposure, and that it won’t take up too much of their time. How do you go about finding people to interview? Look for the people that are active in whatever area you’re operating in. Contact blog owners, newsletter owners, product owners, etc. When I’ve done this myself, I’ve always conducted the actual interview by email. I simply compiled a list of questions that would be interesting to people in my niche, and then I emailed them over to the other person for them to answer.
Of course you could also do this by telephone, audio, skype or even face-to-face. It’s actually not difficult to think of interview questions, just figure out what people in your niche want to know, and ask those things to your interviewee. Let’s say you are in the internet marketing niche. You should be asking them things such as “how would you make money from xxx?”, “describe a typical day in the life of an internet marketer”, “how would you build a mailing list from scratch?” etc. I know that people in the Internet Marketing niche want to know these things.
A quality 20-30 page report is not a problem if you get the right person involved. Seriously try it! You’d be very surprised at who would do an interview with
you. It can also be a lot of fun, and a great way to build up relationships with people who are big in your niche. This could come in very useful in the future when you are looking for JV partners.
Private Label Rights (PLR)
Another option is to get hold of a quality PLR product, and use that as your viral report. A PLR product is simply a product (an eBook, short report, audio etc) that has been pre-written by someone else. Usually you have the right to do whatever you want with it. You can rewrite it, change the title, call yourself the author, etc (although you do need to check the terms of a particular PLR product because the rights do vary.) It’s also worth paying for quality PLR . Some of it can be very poor quality, so be careful. Also, if availability is restricted then that’s even better for you. Ideally you don’t want 10,000 other people having the exact same report as you!
The best thing to do with PLR is to rewrite it, make it your own product. Re-name it, write a new sales page, put yourself as the author. This makes your product unique. Also, change the graphics and the ebook cover. Or outsource it.
Write The Report Yourself
Of course the final option is to write your viral report yourself.
Let’s stick with the same example I gave earlier on in the book, and say that I’ve decided to create a report on training an older dog. First, we need to research the subject in order to find out more about it. I know absolutely nothing about training an older dog, but I could easily write a quality report on the subject in just a couple of days. All it takes is some research. Effectively I’m going to become an ‘expert’ on the subject just by reading online.
My first stop for information would be the forum thread I found that gave me the idea to write the report in the first place. The original poster had just bought an older dog, and was asking people for tips on how to train it. There was no shortage of replies either, over 3 pages in fact. There were plenty of tips and advice from owners and other pet experts. What I’d do here is read through the advice people were giving, and then research it further.
A good place to go next is http://www.ezinearticles.com
I search for “training an older dog” and get the following results: There are over 161,000 results for this, although not all of them will be useful. I’d read through as many articles as I could, and I’d write down the parts I thought were important. I’m looking for the best tips and advice on training an older dog, and the main problems people have and how they solved these problems. I’d also find content sites, blogs, and newsletters that have information related to dog training.
Another potential source of information would be other eBooks. There are plenty of books out there on dog training, and many of them are free. I’d read through a few, again making notes as I went on the parts I thought were relevant. If you spend an entire day reading reports on dog training then you will easily be able to write a short report just from what you’ve learned. Basically you need to learn as much as you can about your chosen topic. The beauty of the internet is that it’s possible to find out information on pretty much anything. You can do this very quickly. As you read through this information you’re effectively becoming an expert. Even if you knew nothing about this topic before you started!
Next I’d devise a list of what (from my reading and research) seemed to be the 10 best tips/problems/advice for training an older dog. This will form the basis of my report. I’d take each tip/topic, and write a page or two explaining it in detail. So if I found that potty training an older dog was a particular problem then I’d write a page about how to do it. How would I know what to write? From the information I found in my research.
The key is to take your research and then write about it yourself. You should have enough knowledge to be able to do this. I should briefly mention here that you should never copy other people’s work. What you’re doing is reading sources to FIND OUT about a particular subject, not to copy their work. You are gaining new knowledge so that you know enough about the subject to be able to write about it yourself. In terms of writing style, the best tip I can give you is to write it as though you’re explaining it to a friend. Try to keep the language as simple and ‘chatty’ as possible. Break up your text into smaller paragraphs. Include some images, as this helps to break up the text and engage the readers interest.
Think of a Title For Your Report
The best reports have a title which not only describe what the report is about, but also captures the interest and imagination of the reader. This is important. Say I create a report called ‘Auction Traffic Gold.’ That’s just off the top of my head, and it’s probably not the most original title in the world, but somehow it ‘feels’ right. Just from the title you’ve got a pretty good idea that the book is about auctions, and possibly that it’s about how to make money from it. I could have called the book ‘How to Drive Traffic and Make Money from Auctions’ but somehow it doesn’t quite have the same ring to it.
Insert Your Links/Monetize Your Report
As we’ve already discussed, the whole point of a viral report is not to make money from actually selling the report, but to drive traffic to other websites through the links in your book. These can be links to anywhere you wish, your own websites, or products which you are an affiliate of. The key is to make sure your links are subtle yet prominent at the same time! As we mentioned earlier, your report is unlikely to get sold or passed on by people if it contains too many links, or the links make the text unreadable.
Here’s how I like to do it.
Insert a link on the title page of your report under the title. I will put something like “Proudly Brought To You By “My Site.” The next place I like to insert a link is at the bottom of every page. This could quite easily be the top of the page if that’s what you’d prefer. Another idea is to have a page at the beginning and end of your report with links.
In many reports you’ll see this called ‘recommended links and resources.’ The other type of hyperlink that you could insert are in-text links like this. These are probably the most effective kind because they are there naturally as the person is reading the text, and you can subtly “sell” what you’re linking to in your paragraph.
It’s possible to make money by creating eBooks and putting them on eBay. This is something many people are doing right now, and you can learn more about it at “Your Link Here”.
Remember that your links can be to anywhere you like, and you can insert links to multiple sites in your report. Link to your products, blog, newsletter, products you’re acting as an affiliate of, etc. Obviously the links need to be to things that readers of your report are likely to be interested in. It’s pointless linking to a site on dog training in an eBook which is about making money from blogging!
Earning Through Offering Private Label Rights
This is a technique I learned a few years ago, and it’s something which can prove quite successful if you’re targeting the right market. PLR is very hot at the moment. There are tons of internet marketers out there that are looking for fresh content and products to resell, and you can profit from this by giving it to them. Give away your report with resell rights, but also include a link at the end of the report where readers can purchase PLR rights (Private Label Rights) to your eBook for a small fee. You can also offer Master Resell rights if you don’t want to offer PLR.
Would you like to purchase full unrestricted private label rights to this eBook? Click Here Now! ( your link would be hyperlinked to the click here now) You’d then link to a sales page where you’d sell the PLR rights to your eBook.
Another variation on this would be to offer your report without resale rights, and then to charge for giving people the resell rights version (or upgrade to Master Resell Rights). Obviously this could limit the viral potential of your report however.
NOTE: It’s worth mentioning here that this method is usually only suitable if your report is created from original content (ie. You wrote it yourself, or outsourced it.) If your report was itself created from PLR material, then quite often you’re not allowed to pass on the PLR/resell rights to other people. If you’ve written the content yourself however then there shouldn’t be a problem.
Insert Your License Terms
It’s important that people who come across your eBook know that they can resell it / pass it on, obviously we want to actively encourage this! Remember that we want as many people as possible to resell/give away our eBook. We’re looking for our report to spread over the internet and be seen by as many people as we can. All you need to do is insert a quick message somewhere at the beginning of you report. Something like the following should be fine:
Congratulations! You have FULL MASTER RESELL AND GIVEAWAY RIGHTS to this eBook!
You may sell/distribute/give away this report in any way you wish as long as it is not changed or edited in any way. It’s also usually a good idea to insert a legal disclaimer.
Conversion to PDF
Once you’ve got your report written, the next thing to do is make it into a PDF file. PDF is the web standard for digital information products because it’s readable on almost any computer. The report you’re reading right now is in PDF format. There are several options available here, but the best one is a free program called Open Office.
You can download it for free from http://www.openoffice.org Basically it’s a free office suite that’s similar to MS Office, and it comes with a word processor called Writer. Within ‘Writer’ is a facility to make your document into a PDF file. All you do is use ‘writer’ to write your report, put in all your images, etc. Once you are finished you simply save your report. Then click on “file” in the top left of writer and scroll down to “export to PDF.” Just make sure the “tagged PDF” box is checked, this will ensure your links work correctly. That’s it! Pretty easy I think you’ll agree.
Create Your Graphics and Sales Page
Remember that a little earlier on in the report we touched on the fact that you should make it as easy as possible for people to resell/distribute your report?
Well in order to maximize the chances of our report going viral it’s necessary to create a sales page, and ideally create a set of graphics to go with it. I’m no graphics expert, and if you’re anything like me you might want to consider outsourcing this. Don’t try to botch your own graphics if you really can’t create them! It’s better to have no graphics at all than something that looks really unprofessional. But having a set of quality graphics really does help, and it’s worth spending some money on this in order to make your report look professional. As for creating the sales page, it really doesn’t have to be a masterpiece. Writing copy and web design is a skill which can take a while to learn. If you’re uncomfortable with it then again you might want to think about outsourcing this part as well.
Your sales page doesn’t have to be super special. The most important thing is just to include one so that people can easily pick up your report and distribute it themselves. If you don’t do this you’ll severely limit the viral effect of your report. I use a free program called Kompzer to create my websites. All you then need to do is include your sales page file in the folder when people download your free report.
Distribute Your Report
If your report truly goes ‘viral’ then it will take on a life of its own, and it’ll show up all over the internet in places you didn’t even know existed! A successful viral report can generate traffic for years to come.
Here’s how it works:
One person downloads your report. They start selling it on eBay, and they sell six copies a month. Of those six, one of them decides to sell it themselves, and another one decides to put it on their website. This generates a few hundred downloads a month. Of those few hundred, many of them will pass it on or resell it to others, out of those, many will do the same thing, and on it goes.
But in order to get to that stage it’s firstly necessary to manually distribute it. The key is to get it out to as many people as possible. This gives us the best chance of success. Think about the people who might be interested in reselling/distributing your report, and then make contact with them.
Here are some people you might want to contact:
Find people who run newsletters in your niche and offer them your report. Newsletter owners are always looking for new content, and many will jump at the chance of getting hold of a quality new report that they can give away to their subscribers. It’s easy to find newsletters in your niche. All it takes is a quick search on Google for ‘your niche + newsletter’ or ‘your niche + mini course.’
Although eBay has now introduced a ban on digital items, it’s still possible to sell eBooks on eBay as long as they are on CD-Rom, and there are many sellers actively doing this. In fact they seem to be more popular now than when they were being sold as digital downloads! Contact as many of these sellers as you can and offer them your report. Again, many will be delighted because a lot of the eBooks you see being sold on eBay are quite old and poor quality. Sellers are always on the look out for new quality eBooks that they can sell, and as ours comes with a ready-made sales page, all the hard work is done for them. They can upload your sales page to eBay and begin selling your report. Get more and more of these viral reports out there and things start to look very interesting.
Many forums have a section for free stuff. If you’re in the Internet Marketing niche then THE place to go is the Warrior Forum. Post your report in the free eBooks section. You should get quite a lot of downloads both by people who are interested in your content AND people who are looking to resell/distribute your report. Sticking with the Warrior Forum, another great tip is to offer your report for free in a WSO (Warrior Special Offer.) You’ll have to pay to post your report, but it’s well worth it. I once posted a report there and got over 2000 downloads in the space of a few weeks. Think about that 2000 people downloaded my report, and quite a few of those resold/gave away my report themselves. Let me tell you now that report brought in a LOT of traffic and went VERY viral!
The other thing you can do with forums is put a link in your signature to a site where people can download your report. This could be a direct download, or you could take them to an opt-in page where they give you their name and email address in return for downloading your report for free. As I’m sure you probably already know this is a great way of building a mailing list.
Say I had gone ahead and created my report on ‘how to train an older dog’, my signature link might be something like ‘Do You Want to Learn How To Effectively Train Your Older Dog? Grab My FREE Report Here’ or something like that. I’m sure you can think of better. I’d then go on to dog training forums and I’d start making useful posts giving people advice on training an older dog (and related training threads). I’d look for people asking questions, and I’d try to answer them based on what I knew from my research. Hopefully people would see my signature link and download my report. Don’t worry about giving advice either. You WILL BE ABLE to give advice because if you’ve done your research like I told you to do then you’ll be in a position to offer people sound advice. An ‘expert’ on a forum is simply someone who knows more than the next person.
Find blogs in your niche, and contact the author asking them if they’d be interested in your report. Blog owners often want fresh content for their readers, and your report may well fit the bill exactly.
The same things apply as above. Find people who sell related products and ask them if they’d be interested in your free report. Quite often product owners are looking for eBooks which they can offer as bonuses to their buyers, and if they’ve created a product then it’s highly likely that the person will have a mailing list in that niche.
Free eBook Websites
There are lots of websites out there which provide a directory of free eBooks for people to download. They’re not always that effective, but it’s still worth doing. Just do a search on Google for “free ebook submit” and you should be able to find the sites. Usually it’s simply a case of filling out a short form, sending them your eBook, and then they’ll list it on their website.
Here are some other places you might want to submit to:
Your Own Sites
If you’ve got your own blog then add your free report to it. The same if you’ve got websites. Maybe you are already selling a product and you could offer your report as a bonus? Or perhaps you’re an eBay seller and you could sell your report on CD (just to get the ball rolling).
Free reports are a great way of building a mailing list. Simply create a sales page, and instead of putting a payment button at the bottom, put an opt-in box instead.
Your Own Mailing List
Of course if you already have one then offer your report to your existing subscribers. Free quality content is great to keep your subscribers happy. If you don’t have a mailing list you will need an autoresponder to start building one.
If you do all of the above then it should be quite easy to get your report widely distributed across the internet in a relatively short space of time.
Once you’ve done the initial work you can just let go, that’s the beauty of viral marketing it takes on a life of it’s own! This is a great way of getting highly targeted traffic to websites. The main obstacle is getting your report out to the first few hundred people. Once you’ve done that it’s easy.
Remember that a free report can also work as a way of making money in itself , either through creating a report and putting affiliate links in, or by a method such as selling PLR rights to your report for an extra fee. Like anything though, it only works if you put it into action. Creating a viral report is a relatively simple concept, but that doesn’t make it any less effective. And best of all, it is dirt cheap and has maximum returns with minimal work.
This stuff works, and I hope you’ve learned something about viral marketing strategies in this report.