Sections From: 101+ No B.S. Secrets to Getting Massive Amounts of Free Advertising, Publicity and Promotion For Your Product, Service, Business, Web Site, MLM or Book! By Mike Van Norden and Ron Ruiz
This is part two of a collection of sections from my best-selling e-book that I wrote with Ron Ruiz. It was written in 2002, so some of the sections may mention outdated topics, but there’s still a ton of good sales and marketing advice throughout. I hope you are able to take some of these ideas and use them in your business to grow and prosper. Enjoy!
Didn’t read part one? Read part one here!
Creating Effective Websites
Speaking of websites, it’s critical that you learn how to create a good website that sells! After all, what good does it do to get thousands of people to go to your website if you don’t sell them when they visit! One of the best ways to do this is through what is called a minisite. They are normally only one or two pages so they are simple to create-but they close the sale for your product or service.
O.K. back to our topic.
Let’s say you just own a local hardware store and in your press release you blatantly say, “Hey we’re running a half off special today at ABC hardware, come on down.” The editor catches that and they’re going to say, “Take out an ad.”
But if you think up an event and can have people come down and donate the proceeds to a charity, a local cause, they’re interested.
For example maybe there’s been a flood, maybe there’s been a hurricane in the area. If people are in dire need of lumber for their home or wherever, have a special event.
“Come on down here, here’s what we’re going to do: We’re having an event where people can come and the proceeds will go to people who have lost their homes during this flood, or during this hurricane, or during this tornado.”
You create the event around what’s happened to make the editor want to say, “You know what? That’s a great cause. That is newsworthy.”
If you use that type of hook in your release, it’s a dead ringer. It doesn’t matter whether you own a hardware store, a pet grooming shop, or you’re an insurance or real estate agent.
Most business people don’t think like that. They may be skeptics and think this won’t work. But they are wrong. I have known people that have used this technique successfully because of my recommendation.
It’s just thinking outside of the box. It all goes back to being a human interest story and it’s a hook. Another way to make something newsworthy is by creating an event. For example: If you’re an insurance agent, you could create a scholarship fund for someone at the local high school.
That’s what’s newsworthy. Imagine this headline in your local paper:
Local Insurance Agent Sets Up $500 Scholarship Fund For Ridgemont High Student.
That’s the type of human interest story the media loves to cover. But best of all, think of the positive media exposure you’ll receive, which in turn, can’t help but lead to future clients.
FREE Radio Publicity Rules
When people think of getting free advertising they usually think of getting it in magazines and newspapers. They often overlook one of my favorite places to get free advertising…radio! I’ve literally made a fortune for myself and my clients using free radio publicity.
Imagine yourself being interviewed as a guest in your local town? Do you think you’d become a ‘local’ celebrity? Of course you would. What about having a product or service that could help people all across America? Wouldn’t it be great if you could be a featured guest on radio shows all across the country?
Well, it can happen. My clients have been featured on over 5,000 radio shows from New York to Los Angeles, and everywhere in between. Even if you’ve never considered doing radio interviews, now is the time to start. Not only can it produce a great income for you, but it’s a great way to find out if anyone is interested in what you have to offer.
One of my clients makes over $300,000.00 per year, doing nothing but radio interviews sitting at his home. He wakes up, does 2 or 3 radio interviews, makes hundreds of dollars
(maybe thousands) on each show and relaxes for the rest of the day.
Granted, it’s not that easy for everyone, but there are certainly advantages if this interests you. Remember, even if you only do one interview per week, it’s free advertising and publicity. Now, let me give you great tips on making money with free radio interviews.
Here are some important tips that can help you in
your quest for FREE radio publicity.
1. Do radio show interviews because of the instant audience response and because of the large audience you can reach, many times without ever leaving home. A good radio interview can get your phone ringing off the hook with orders for your products. That can start even before the interview is over and go on for the next few days.
2. Realize that you are not paying for the interview. You are invited to be a guest because what you have to say will be of interest to the show’s listeners. Radio interviews are free, unlike buying a 60-second advertising spot.
3. Realize that you are an expert in your field. A one hour radio interview will give you more credibility than a paid advertisement because you are sharing what you know. Think about how you respond to a person doing an interview compared to that same person’s products in an advertisement. Look at which mechanism motivates you to
4. Consider doing radio interviews as a way to test if people want what you have to offer. When you do a well-done interview and give your contact information on the top 50 radio markets in the country and get no orders for your product, the general public may not be interested in your product or service.
5. Seek out radio interviews regardless of how many other experts there are in your field. Many of them are not doing radio, and you are.
6. Listen to talk radio and morning radio shows to see how interviews are done. Find out what works by noticing how much you want to keep listening to the interview. Duplicate the elements of what appeals most to you about the interview.
7. Find a mentor in someone you hear as a radio show host. Contact them when it sounds like they are within your same industry, or they sound likeable. Let them know you would like to know them, and that you probably can help each other.
8. Jump right into doing radio interviews in smaller markets to begin. This enables you to perfect your presentation for the bigger markets. Remember that you know more about your product and area of expertise than the majority of people out there listening to your show.
9. Identify your hook, your angle. Think about what makes you unique. Ask a friend, family member, or colleague to help you identify your hook when you are too close to see it for yourself. Everyone has a hook. It is a matter of identifying it.
10. Hire a publicity agent or public relations firm only when there is an incentive for them to produce good sales results for you. Create an arrangement for them to have 50% of the sales you make. This will be incentive for them to get you onto shows that are likely to reap handsome rewards rather than just onto any show that will have you.
11. Be cautious about paying a per-show or flat-rate fee to a firm to get you placements. There is no real motivation for them to bring you the quality results you are seeking. Hire someone who has a vested interest in your success.
12. Plan a media tour for yourself. This can be accomplished by traveling to cities, and doing in studio interviews. Often show hosts in major markets will be more open to having you on their show, if you’re in their city.
13. Be aware of the AQH. That is the Average Quarter Hour listenership. The talk shows you contact are driven by this requirement to keep a certain amount of people tuned in during 15-minute time periods. Shows are rated in directories by this number. A great interview with you will keep that number high.
14. Extend your time on air by having a list of topics to discuss in your press release, such as Top 10 Secrets To A More Fulfilling Relationship. This makes it harder for the host to cut you off on #3 and helps to extend your time on air.
15. Find out the demographics of the show you are contacting. Demographics are found in resources listed at the end of this booklet and give information about who is the typical show listener. Be sure the audience is a match for your product or publication. An AOR (Album Oriented Rock) station is not a match for a guest who promises to reduce cellulite in 30 days. This station’s listeners are mostly male, not the females who would be the ideal audience for that topic. Your topic would be better received on an AC (adult contemporary) or CHR (contemporary hits radio) station with an average of 88% female listeners.
16. Keep in mind there are always exceptions to rules. Demographics are averages about who listens to a particular station and show. You may be surprised by success in a particular market that you stumbled into that did not seem to have your ideal demographics as listed in a directory.
17. Set up voice mail to handle the flow of phone call responses from your interviews. Some voice mail vendors can provide you multiple trunks so you can take multiple calls simultaneously on voice mail. This can allow you to capture hundreds of names in a short period of time.
18. Increase the number of names and phone numbers of overflow calls into your voice mail that you cannot take personally. Record the following announcement in your own voice for them to hear. This message can increase the rate of people who will leave a message to 80% of those who call.
“Thank you and congratulations for calling XYZ. Because you are one of the first 100 callers, you are eligible for a 50% discount on our ABC product ! Due to the overwhelming demand for the ABC product, our customer service Specialists are busy taking orders at this time. But here’s the great news. Instead of wasting your time by keeping you on hold forever, if you’ll kindly leave your name and phone number only, one of our friendly specialists will return your call within one hour, and you will receive 50% off your order. Thanks for calling and have a great day.”
The Press Release
19. Create a compelling one-page press release. Be outrageous with the headline of your press release. It will be received well by show hosts, and is different from how a print editor needs to be approached. Being outrageous tells the show producer and host that you will be a lively, fun guest to have on their program.
20. Think of what would capture your own attention if you were on the receiving end of a press release. Let that guide you in creating your own powerful headline and some bullet points about what you will discuss on the show.
21. Remember that you are marketing yourself to both the producer and the show host with that press release. You must sell yourself to the producer first. That person cares about whether you will be an entertaining guest on their show.
22. Keep your press release to one page, double-spaced, using “courier” font. Using any other format than this will immediately give you away as a novice and someone who is unfamiliar with the acceptable standard. That will also mean you are a novice as a guest on a radio show, and your press release will be discarded immediately.
23. Fax a press release as a fast way to reach radio shows. Be prepared to respond to same-day interviews which can sometimes happen. Some of the smaller markets will phone you when they get your faxed release.
24. Consider using timely holidays as a theme for your press release. Think about whether your topic can be connected to Valentine’s Day, National Secretary’s Day, Get Organized Week, or Small Business Week.
25. Be specific and selective in where you send your press releases. Broadcasting them to any radio show you can find will be a waste of time and energy. It will also be an embarrassment to you when you do your follow-up phone call. The producer knows you did not do your homework about their station.
27. Be aware that the show hosts in the small markets may well be very good hosts. They are also introductions to hosts of other shows. You are also more likely to have repeat invitations back to these smaller markets than you will to the shows in the larger markets. Those repeat visits can become your bread and butter income from sales of your products.
28. Realize that there is often a higher trust factor among listeners in a smaller market. People trust the show host, believe in your message, and are usually highly responsive in buying your product. You will sell the most when the host has a strong affinity with their listeners, regardless of the size of the market.
29. Decide when you feel comfortable and confident enough to go after the top 50 markets. That may be after a week of doing interviews, or it may be months down the
road. Each person is different. Many people have about a 30-day learning curve of doing at least one interview every day.
30. Phone each radio station to verify the producer’s name before sending a faxed press release. Producers of radio and TV are very transient. They change stations frequently. Verifying the producer’s name in advance will increase your chances of getting an interview. Taking one hour a day to do this verification can update your entire database within a couple of weeks. It will be worth every penny you spend on outbound calls.
31. Verify the format of the station while you are also asking about the producer’s name and before you fax a press release. Radio formats change very often. What was a talk show station yesterday could be a country music station today.
The Follow Up
32. Follow up your faxes with phone calls to the show producers. Many shows get hundreds of faxed press releases every day. Yours needs to stand out. Help spark the producer’s memory by phoning them.”Hey John, I sent you a press release. Did you get it? I’m the guy who wants to talk about 10 ways to burn body fat” You may be asked to re-send the fax. Do so immediately, and do a follow-up call again the next day.
33. Call your local radio station’s producer, especially when you are in a small market. Tell them who you are, that you would like to be on their show, that you have a topic of interest for their listeners, and what you are about. You may find yourself booked onto the show within a short time.
34. Be willing to tell the producer you are the person that wants to get onto their show. It is completely possible to do this yourself, without the help of a publicity agent or public relations firm. Many producers appreciate the fact you are calling them yourself. Your call also gives them the chance to hear what you sound like.
35. Ask the producer some important questions that will endear you to the host and producer:
• How long is the show?
• Can you take ‘callers’?
• Is the show live or taped?
• What are your demographics?
• Will the interview go longer if it is going great?
• What can I do to make the interview a success?
• Would you like me to fax you some suggested questions to help the host?
36. Have an orchestrated ‘pitch’ that sells you as the definitive expert on your particular topic. Back that pitch up with a dynamic, passionate, and informative introduction to the producer. Give them your life story honed down to about 30 seconds.
37. Phone morning show producers and hosts between 10:00 – 11:00 am, after their show has gone off the air. Waiting until noon will usually be too late for you to reach them.
The Show Host
38. Provide your product to the show host so they have a chance to familiarize themselves with it. When a show host likes your product because they used it or read it, they will end up helping you sell the product. Whatever you say will not compare to what the show host says about it.
39. Engage the show host as much as possible during the interview. Once you get the host involved on a personal level in what you are about, that host will endorse you right then and there during the interview because you have tapped into the most important person to them-themselves!
40. Keep the show host engaged by referring back to their interests throughout your interview. Doing this will give you their respect and even more time in the interview.
41. Be aware that show hosts do what they do for a living because they enjoy talking on the air. You are there to be an interesting guest. Do what you need to do to maintain some balance between you and the host.
42. Turn any objection into an asset during your interview. Do whatever is necessary to build rapport with the show host, no matter how antagonistic they may be. Roll with whatever the show host is putting forth. Have fun with it.
43. Ask the show host if it is okay to let people know how to contact you. Only ask this during an off-air break, rather than risk embarrassing them by asking the question on the air. 99% of the time the host will say it is okay.
44. Be aware of referrals that go on among show hosts and show producers. When you do a good interview, they all tell each other about it. When you do a less-than-wonderful interview, they also tell each other about it. With many radio stations merging, there can be multiple stations housed in just one building. The hosts and producers all talk to each other about who has been on their shows. They also post their comments on a service such as Bitboard.
45. Identify strategies and technique for building rapport with show hosts. Some books to help you develop these skills are suggested in the Resource section of this booklet.
46. Develop a rapport with the show host by making notes of their interests. Refer to these specifics the next time you talk to them. Keep notes about special hobbies, how many children, where they like to vacation.
47. Maintain a database of radio show hosts and their shows. Use whatever database software that most appeals to you. Keep notes about the show hosts in your data base, along with any and all pertinent information about the show. Doing this will keep you connected when a show host moves to another station. When you show interest in the show host, they will show interest in you with respect and trust and future bookings on their show.
48. Give a great interview so you will be asked back. Make a believer out of your show host by using the techniques and strategies suggested in this booklet.
49. Realize that you never know who may be listening to your interview. You may be on a show in a tiny market, and a corporate executive could be vacationing in that town and be up late at night because they could not sleep. That person could be your ticket to a huge sale of your products or services, in an otherwise very small market.
50. Give people tips and techniques about your topic. Share your knowledge that you want to be sharing anyway. Then give the listeners your 800 number so they can get even more of what you have to offer through your books, other products, and services.
51. Be an entertaining and interesting guest. By doing that, the show host will let you plug your product. By being entertaining and interesting, your interview will bring high ratings to the show. That is how the shows make their money, by bringing in advertising dollars. Without good guests, the shows have no advertisers.
52. Be compelling. It is not necessary for you to be funny or even charming. You are there to keep listeners glued to their radio. Your secondary mission is to create new customers for yourself.
53. Give specific, precise answers to questions posed by the show host or someone who calls in to a call-in show. Saying ‘it’s in Chapter 4′ will guarantee your never being asked back. The more you give away, within reason, the more people will respond well to what you have to offer, and will want to buy what you have.
54. Include things that are happening in the news whenever possible and appropriate. Doing this helps more people tune in to what you have to say, regardless of your topic. Even a passing reference to some news event will create that connection for you and your listeners.
55. Expect the same questions from hosts and listeners the more interviews you do. This will allow you to establish a comfortable and easy pace for yourself, one that will prompt many sales for you.
56. Use the word ‘free’ very carefully in your interviews. Listeners can mistakenly hear your main product as ‘free’ when you really intended to add something else along with your main product. Instead of using ‘free’, say ‘I’ll throw this booklet in when you buy the book.”
57. Say ‘free’ in an interview only when you are offering something as a lead to future purchases. Giving away a free book by email so you can capture a name and email address for future sales works fine. The same goes with a free newsletter or free special report.
58. Give things away free when you plan to use those captured names to contact for future sales. If you are not willing to use those names to make money with, you are better off just giving out a phone number on the air to sell people a particular product.
59. Mention your phone number when your interview is more than 5-7 minutes. When the interview is 5-7 minutes or less, give only your web site address if you have one. For interviews of 15-20 minutes, give both your phone number and your web site address. In a one-hour interview, give your phone number twice as often as you mention your web site address. Be careful about becoming an infomercial by giving your phone number or web site address too often.
60. Learn how to remind the show host to give your phone number. The more interviews you do, the more you will realize the appropriateness of mentioning giving the phone number out again during the next segment after a commercial break, or after the next song.
61. Tape your interviews. It is a good way for you to critique and refine your own interview skills. You will also have samples to send to other show producers. Your interview skills will make a difference in how many units of your product you sell on a radio show. It will become obvious to you how you can improve the overall flow of your interviews and even the pitch of your voice once you hear the tapes.
62. Refine your interview over time. Plan what you will say. Expect to cover the same basic points in each interview, whether they are in the same order or not. Practice your answers. The tapes of shows you have done will help your refinement process.
63. Offer a free special report on your area of expertise within your radio interview. You will be provided the person’s name and address to be able to approach them about other products and services that may be of interest to them, immediately and in the future.
After The Interview
64. Request testimonials from show hosts when you get off the show. A request can be as simple as “ Do you mind if I get a quote from you?” Include as many as 5 or 6 short testimonials on the press releases you send out. This greatly heightens your credibility and opens doors for more interviews on other shows. A good testimonial will help you even if you have only an average press release. Consider putting a show host’s quote right at the beginning of your press release.
65. Send a simple thank-you note to the show host for having you on as a guest. This gesture reinforces your level of professionalism and indicates your appreciation for the opportunity to be on their show. It can also increase your chances of being asked back.
66. Evaluate your radio interview success by your sales. A big hug or a pat on the back from the show host or producer does not put money in the bank or food on the table. The criteria of success is how many people were motivated to pick up the phone or go to your web site to buy a product from you.
67. Keep the flow going. Contact radio shows you have been to for return engagements. Just because you have been to a particular market a certain time a year ago, probably a fraction of the people who were there were tuned in when you were on at that time. Give good interviews so you can be invited back again and again.
68. Call the show producer or host for the return booking by saying “I was on the show with you, and I’ve got this new thing, this whole half-hour segment, that I think your listeners will love.” When they remember how compelling you were before, they will be eager for you to return.
69. Be willing to reinvent yourself to get return bookings on shows you have already been on. Find a way to make your product or service newsworthy. Think about how you can talk about a different aspect of your topic to make you and it just as interesting and compelling as you were the last time you were a guest on that show.
Rounding Out Your Business
70. Develop new information products in your area of expertise. A book can become an audio tape series or a CD or a videotape or a downloadable digital publication delivered by email. Each of these new products gives you a new reason to do radio interviews. Self-publish these products for the greatest control over the quality and profit.
71. Create a range of products. This allows you ongoing publicity as well as a product to suit various people’s budgets. It also gives you the opportunity to resell and up-sell to current and previous customers.
72. Consider the lifetime value of a customer. Be aware of how much a customer typically spends per purchase, and how many purchases they usually make in a given time span. Doing the math on this tells you how much that customer is worth to your business. This guides your decision making in whether you want to make $1,600 in sales in one interview, or have 1,500 prospects with a potential of $75 each (if that is what the typical customer is worth).
73. Create a newsletter as a way to stay in touch with the customers you add to your business from your radio interviews. These customers want to know the many ways you can enhance their life with your products and services. Send out a newsletter on a consistent or infrequent basis, depending on what suits you best..
74. Be prepared to capture people’s email addresses when they visit your web site so you can contact them in the future with offers of additional products and services from your company. Identify various products available to gather this information.
75. Create a web site that is designed to make you money. Make it be clear, easy to navigate, and quick. Make your products easy to find and easy to buy.
76. Include photographs on your web site. That allows people to see who you are and to get a good idea of the products you sell. For a nominal cost, get a friend with a digital camera to take a catalog of photographs that you can rotate on your web site.
77. Keep your web site fresh with new content, so people are interested in returning. They will want more of what you have when their first experience of you is a valuable and compelling one. Even if they do not buy when they visit or when they first hear you, you have the ability to contact them with other offers once you capture their name, email address or phone number.
Interested in reading more? See Part 3 of my best-selling e-book here!
All contents Copyright (c) 2002. Marketing Edge Publishing/Ruiz and Associates except where indicated otherwise. All rights reserved worldwide. Reprint only with express permission from copyright holder(s). All trademarks are property of their respective owners. All contents provided as is. No express or implied income claims made herein — your business success is always dependent on many factors, including your own abilities.