Going From 6 to 8 Figures a Year

by / ⠀Startup Advice / October 9, 2012

Most people think there is a big difference between businesses that are doing six figures a year, seven figures a year and eight figures a year. The reality is the differences are small. From the outside, my business to most people looks similar to other internet marketers – so why am I often able to make 10 times more money consistently than most other marketers? What is the difference between my business and those doing six or seven figures a year?

It’s not the product…

It’s not the traffic…

It’s not a sales letter…

It’s not a high converting website…

It’s not a product launch…

So what is it? While all of those things help, they are not what you need to take a business from one level to the next. The big secret is what I call “monetizing the lifeline of a lead.”

The lifeline of a lead is the life of their customer experience with you and your company. Where did they come from, what are they doing when they are there, where do you send them afterwards, and how do you make money from each step?

It has a lot less to do with coming up with a new idea or any of the other things above, and a lot more to do with monetizing each of the critical points of the lifeline of your leads. When larger companies hire me to consult them, all I do is look at their customers. How are they getting into their company? What are they doing when they are there? Where are the possible monetization points that they are missing, and where should they be taking that person to make more money and better serve their customers?

In my business and others, I’ve identified nine steps during the lifeline of a lead that are prime monetization points. Look at these points in the lifeline of your customers and see how you can add things that will increase how much money you make from each customer.

What you’ll find after you strengthen each of the steps in your customers lifeline, is you will be able to determine how much money each of your customers is worth to you on average, and from that, you will be able to know exactly how much money you can spend to generate a customer.

As soon as you know that number, then you can start the ramp up process and quickly grow your business from six figures to seven figures to eight and beyond! So let’s get started.

Step 1: The Pre-Frame

It all starts before someone gets to your website. It’s the pre-frame that you send someone to your website through. It could be an ad, a blog, an email, but whatever it is, you need to take control of the frame that someone enters your website in.

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When I first started online, one of my mentors Mark Joyner helped me to understand this point. He used to say, “All clicks are not created equal.” He told me that if someone saw an ad that said, “Russell is a scam artist and stole my money, click here” and someone sees an ad that says, “Russell changed my life – I owe all my success to him, click here” and they both land on the same page, what would happen?

Obviously the person who came through the positive frame would be much more likely to buy than the person who came through the negative frame. If you understand that, then you understand the power of controlling the pre-frame before the website. There are lots of techniques you can use to control the pre-frame, and it would probably be a good article by itself, but for now focus on controlling what they go through before they hit your website.

Step 2: Identify Subscribers

After someone has come to your website, the first goal is to figure out which of your visitors is willing to trade their email address in exchange for more information. This concept is not new in the internet marketing circles, but often people still don’t do it. Always send traffic to some type of squeeze page or landing page where you can collect your visitors’ email addresses so you can follow up with them.

Step 3: Identify Buyers

This step is similar to the step above, but to appreciate it, you must understand something that Dan Kennedy once said. He said, “A buyer, is a buyer, is a buyer.” Once someone has proven themselves as a buyer, they will normally continue to buy until they have a bad experience or run out of money. When you realize this, it’s important that as quickly as possible you identify which of your subscribers is willing to pull a credit card out of their wallet in exchange for information. They have just voted with their credit card and told you that they are a buyer. You can then market to this person differently (normally offline) then you would to just a subscriber.

Step 4: Continuity

One of my mentors, David Frey (from marketingbestpractices.com) told me one time, “If you don’t have continuity, then you don’t have a business.” I agree 100 percent and always want to find out ways that we can add continuity to any sales process.

Dentists offer checkups every six months, chiropractors do weekly adjustments, others do membership sites or print newsletters. I don’t care what type of continuity you add, but make sure you attach some type of continuity to your offers. This will dramatically increase how much money you make from each of your customers.

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The next step in the lifeline of your customer is to find where in the process the drop-off points are. If you find that people aren’t coming back after their second adjustment, or are canceling after three months of your newsletter, then you need to add things to strengthen your customers through their sticking points.

Step 5: Ascension

You need to build some type of ascension into your business. At any given time, 20 to 30 percent of your customers will ascend to a higher price level if you offer it to them. I’m not talking about upsells, but about allowing customers to ascend.

You’ll notice this process when you fly in an airplane. You’ll notice that 20 to 30 percent of people will ascend up to first class. They’ll pay a lot more for a seat that is just a little better. In our businesses, we offer gold and platinum level programs that are more expensive and huge numbers of people ascend to these levels every day. You’ll notice on our order forms we always offer a higher, more expensive continuity offer and 50 to 60 percent of people take us up on that offer. We have even higher levels of continuity as well, and we are consistently trying to get our customers to ascend up even higher.

Step 6: Identify Hyper Actives

Immediately after the first sale, you want to identify who your hyper active buyers are. Normally, immediately after the initial sales we will offer a few upsells to our customers. When you structure these correctly you will sell a huge percentage of people (often 20 to 35 percent of people will take your upsell offers). This will help you to identify who your hyper active buyers are so you can spend more time on these customers.

Step 7: Change Their Environment (Break Their Pattern)

After the buying process has ended online, you want to pull them into a different medium as quick as possible to take them out of their comfort zone. When you can pull them out of their normal environment (email, online) and put them into a different environment (teleseminar, webinar, call center, seminar, etc.) it makes it much easier to make the big ticket sales.

Step 8: Age the Lead

Make sure you are offering them the right product at the right time. Too often I’ll see someone start a sales call to sell coaching before the person has even received the product they bought in the mail. If you “age the lead” until after they have received the product, or the pain point has grown again, then it makes it much easier to make a follow-up sale that solves that pain point.

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For us, if we try to sell coaching too early, people won’t say yes because they feel the product they bought will solve their problems. If we wait for a few weeks, and they still haven’t opened or used the product, they realize the power and importance of having a coach to help them and the sale is much easier. Look at your upsell offers, and time them correctly for maximum profit.

Step 9: Sell Up the Value Ladder

After you have acquired a new customer, you need to provide as much value to them as possible. If you provide enough value to them, they are going to want more.

If you haven’t defined a value ladder yet for your customers, with a clear goal of where you want that customer to go, then you will never be able to monetize your customers at the level that you want. The more perceived value someone gets, the more they will pay. Sure, I wish I could sell everyone the things at the top of my value ladder, but unfortunately it’s almost impossible to sell things at the top of most value ladders to a cold lead. But, if you give them something free and they receive value, then they will want to buy more.

After they have purchased a front end product, they will want to get more, and as long as you’ve built a value ladder for your customers, people will naturally ascend up this ladder.

Outspend Your Competitors

The goal for any business should be to outspend your competitors. The only way to do that is if you make more money per customer then your competition. And the way you do this is by looking at the lifeline of the lead, and finding all of the monetization points and strengthening them. When you know how much money you make per customer, then you’ll know how much money you can spend. That is how you scale a business from six figures, to seven figures to eight figures a year quickly.

Online marketing expert Russell Brunson started his company, DotComSecrets.com in 2004 when he was a student at Boise State University. Within a year of graduating, he had made his first million. Known for teaching budding entrepreneurs to turn their hobbies and passions into online income, Russell, 33, also helps small business owners of all kinds to increase profits through Web marketing. Learn more at www.SuccessEtc.com.

About The Author

Matt Wilson

Matt Wilson is Co-Founder of Under30Experiences, a travel company for young people ages 21-35. He is the original Co-founder of Under30CEO (Acquired 2016). Matt is the Host of the Live Different Podcast and has 50+ Five Star iTunes Ratings on Health, Fitness, Business and Travel. He brings a unique, uncensored approach to his interviews and writing. His work is published on Under30CEO.com, Forbes, Inc. Magazine, Huffington Post, Reuters, and many others. Matt hosts yoga and fitness retreats in his free time and buys all his food from an organic farm in the jungle of Costa Rica where he lives. He is a shareholder of the Green Bay Packers.