Hey guys. Today on 5 Minute Marketing we are answering the question, “Do I need a leads list?”
Here’s the thing about leads lists: most big companies don’t have them. Do you think Apple or Amazon have a giant list of potential leads? Of course not. They are focused on taking care of customers who have already spent money with them.
The truth is, having a customer list is far more valuable than having a leads list. People who have already spent money with you are 5-10x more likely to convert than people who haven’t.
“But Brian”, you might be thinking, “they already bought my product! They’re done with me!”. That’s your problem, friend. Notice how SamCart has a bunch of low-ticket items on our site? That’s so our customers never run out of things to invest in with us. If you don’t have enough products to keep your customers coming back, that is where you should be spending time.
Listen to this week’s podcast to hear more about this question. I have a lot of thoughts, and a lot of experience to back up them up. Have a great week, friends.
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Most businesses do not have a leads list. Apple doesn’t have a leads list. Amazon doesn’t have a leads list, and they focus on selling products. They build a list but that list is a database of emails, phone numbers, whatever contact information from buyers.
So should you build a list? That’s the million dollar question that everybody is always struggling with, especially when it comes to online sales. This concept of building a list, when people talk about that, if you don’t understand what I’m talking about, there’s this concept of building a list. When people are talking about that, especially online, they’re talking about a list of leads, usually an email list where the best practice for the last 10 years has been start a website, start giving away some free content, and give it away in exchange for somebody’s email so that you can get a whole bunch of people to give you their email address, and then you can follow up them over time, nurture the relationship, and then continue to sell your product until they buy.
Look, I’m not here to say that is a bad idea, that building a leads list is dumb or doesn’t work. It does work. I have my own leads list that we’ve built one for almost every business that we’ve run, whether it’s the original baseball site or the other marketing businesses that we had, or Sam Cart, or the clients we’ve worked with, the ballet school, a whole bunch of other people I’ve helped out over the years.
Usually that is a piece of the business, but number one, it’s a piece of the business because I’ve been doing this a long time. It’s an easy thing for me to roll out, but one of the things … The problem that I have with leads lists is number one, you don’t have to have one. I mean, look at some of the biggest brands, the most popular business models, offline or online today, and most businesses do not have a leads list. Local businesses? Yes, some of them now you can see at the front counter as you check out they have little promotions. You can leave your business card and they put you on an email list. You can sign up for an email list, but it’s not their main business model.
Most e-commerce businesses, people start a whole store, you know, whatever they’re selling, maybe they’re selling T-shirts and they got 5000 different types of T-shirts. Most of them do not have opt-in forms with lead magnet free PDFs for you to download. Apple doesn’t have a leads list. Amazon doesn’t have a leads list, and yeah, you could sit there and say, “Well, there’s reasons why and here’s the reasons why,” but that’s not the point. In the end, you look at some of the biggest businesses out there and they focus on selling products. They build a list but that list is a database of emails, phone numbers, whatever contact information from buyers, people that buy things. That is the most powerful list you can buy, not a list of leads. I’ll explain that, tell you what happened last week. Most of you are probably on our email list, most likely because you have bought something, maybe because you’ve attended a webinar, or downloaded a free pdf or free video that I’ve put out there.
We did a big webinar last week and it was incredibly successful, did well over six figures in sales. I go back and I look at all the names and emails of people that bought, and guess what? Of the six figures that we made from that one promotion … What was the number? I think it was over 87% of those sales came from people who had bought from us before, came from our customer list, which is a fraction of the size of our leads list.
That’s why I believe the best thing for you to do if you are a beginner, and this applies even if you’re not a beginner, if you happen to have a six, seven figure business is to not focus on building your list. Focus on building your customer list. If you’re thinking, “Well look, if I build my customer list then that means everyone bought my product. What else am I going to do with that list? I have nothing else to sell them.” Well that’s the problem, you should have something else to sell them or you should have a reason to continue to follow up with them to keep them as happy customers.
That’s why you’ll see we sell a lot of low end, cheap, front end promotional products like our five-minute [inaudible 00:05:06], a $47 product, well two payments of $47, or our Messenger Launch Blueprints, our $47 course, or the couple of little books I’ve written, The Ultimate Upscale Script, The Going Pro Manifesto, The Going Pro Game Plan. Those are all essentially free. You pay a couple dollars shipping and handling.
Why do I do that? Because I want to build a database of people who buy low-end, cheap products that are easy to sell. That means I have a high conversion rate, almost as high as giving away free PDFs for an opt in to build a leads list sometimes, but a customer is going to be worth 50 to 100 times what a lead is worth. There are people who have been on my list since 2010, 11, 12, thousands, tens of thousands who have never and will never buy anything, and guess what? I’m just paying AWeber MailChimp, ConvertKit, ActiveCampaign, Infusionsoft, whatever email automation tool you’re using. I’m must paying for them month, after month, after month and I’m not making any money from them.
Build a customer list. That’s why we preach … When I go out and teach this concept of the one-page funnel, the simple one page that you follow our seven-step process you will sell whatever it is you’re trying to sell way more effectively than probably whatever other technique you’re trying to use now to sell it. The reason that I say you can do it all with one page and people will push back and say, “Well, if I just have this one page where does my opt in page come in? Where do my [inaudible 00:06:31] pages come in? How do I build a list?” You don’t. You don’t build a leads list with this process.
Why do I teach something that sounds crazy and that goes against what most gurus preach? Because I don’t believe you need it upfront. I believe building a leads list requires five or six different elements that you don’t need to learn right now. You now have to start paying to host that leads list on MailChimp, Aweber, whatever tool you’re using. You have to figure out how to write auto responder campaigns that follow up with folks and convince them to actually buy.
There’s twice as many moving pieces now. Instead of just having one page where you sell your product and you build a list of people who have bought from you, a customer list that guess what? Is going to be responsible for over 80% of your sales moving forward. So why do 10 times the amount of work for an extra 20% in sales? It doesn’t make any sense when you’re first starting out. So if you’re someone who’s been struggling to build a list and you seem like maybe you’re building a little bit of a list but you’re not actually selling anything because you’re not getting around to the actual most important part in your business which is selling products and getting people to buy then scrap the leads list.
Use social media, use your fan page, a Facebook group, Instagram, a podcast like this one. Use that as your “leads list.” Use that as the audience that you build on those platforms for free that don’t require all the moving pieces and continue to deliver value to them, and build that audience there, and then share the link to your product every once in a while and make sales. Focus on building a customer list. Like I said, we just did a webinar well in the six figures and almost 90% of the sales we made did not come from the biggest portion of our list, which are the leads. It came from the smaller portion of our list which are our former buyers who have bought something, even if it was a $10 product. They bought something. They gave me money, I delivered value, and they were happy with that exchange, and now they’re 10 times more likes to buy things that I present to them in the future. That is what you should be focused on.
The reason that I think this concept of a leads list became so popular is that’s what most of the original online marketing gurus were preaching. If you look at it, when everyone’s preaching the same thing it’s usually a good time to start doubting it. But if you notice most of the business models of those gurus, these were guys that figured out how to sell online. Some of them were really, really smart guys, had really, really big businesses, but they all had one thing in common, that they sold $2000 marketing courses.
These were courses that helped you drive traffic, and figure out SEO, that helped you launch products, that helped you run Facebook ads, whatever it was, whatever their niche was. They were all selling these massively expensive $2000 courses. Guess what? When you’re selling a $2000 course it is more effective to build a leads list because guess what? You’re not going to send somebody who’s never heard of you before to a page and get them to buy a $2000 course. You will but you’ll need 10,000 visitors. Your conversion rate’s going to be less than one half of one percent, even if you’re the best [inaudible 00:10:02] on the planet.
So the reason that these guys built a leads list is because they had to get somebody in their database so that they could continue to follow up with them, and day, after day, after day continue to sell them until some day in the future they would finally feel comfortable enough because they’ve heard them, they now know and trust them, and they’re ready to buy that $2000 course. That’s why building a leads list for them made sense.
So unless you’re that exact business model where you sell a digital course that’s in the business niche that is $2000, the truth is you don’t need a leads list. If you sell something that’s less expensive, if you sell something that does not require that you follow up with someone for two, three, four weeks, sometimes months, sometimes years before these leads on these guys lists got comfortable enough with them to actually buy that program, then you don’t need a leads list.
You look at some of the biggest online marketing brands out there. A couple come to mind in the financial space. There’s a company called Agora Publishing that sells financial newsletters. They’re in a whole bunch of other niches but finance is their big one. There’s another one, Motley Fool, another one, Raging Bull. All three of these brands compete in the financial newsletter space. They sell courses, membership areas, stuff like that, all digital products. These guys are all … I believe all three of them are over $100 million dollars in sales.
If you look at their business model, every single one of them failed to build a leads list and they do it on purpose. They run their traffic, their ads, their blog post wherever they’re getting traffic online, they run all their traffic to a single page, very similar to our concept of the one-page funnel, that has a video that follows those same seven steps, and they all sell a $100 product on the front end. They get somebody to buy this $100 product and now they have them in their database, in their “list” as a customer, and they continue to then nurture them over time and sell them more and more expensive products on the back end, no leads list.
These guys probably combined do over a billion dollars in sales all online, some of the best in the business, and they don’t build a leads list. So don’t fall prey to this seemingly unbreakable law that you have to have a big list or you’re never going to make money online. It’s pure garbage. Some of the biggest brands on the internet do not have a list of leads. They have a massive list of customers. They all started small, and they all started with zero customers, got their first, and now they’re humongous. So that’s where I would focus if I were you.
If you do sell an expensive product, instead of building leads list what I would recommend instead is create a low-ticket front end product, something that’s $10, or $50, or $100, somewhere in that range that delivers a little bit of value, that maybe is a mini version of your expensive product. Start putting that out there and get people to buy that product and get a taste of what you’re all about. Now when it’s time to sell them your $1000, $2000, $5000, $10,000 course, or product, or service, or event, or whatever it is you’re now promoting that to a small but insanely targeted red hot list of people who have given you money in the past.
There is so much value in that I cannot overstate it, that if someone has given you money in the past your chance of converting them is five to 10 times someone who has not given you money before, and it’s probably even more than that. That’s the value of getting someone to give you money. You just got to have something else ready to sell them on the back end. That’s where the power really comes in. Don’t fall prey to that. If you’re stuck in this list building stage, and you feel you’re never getting around to selling products just start selling the damn product. So, that’s what I’ve got for you today. I hope that helps, and I hope you guys have a good rest of the weekend.
If you’re looking for an easy way to launch your business online and start making sales or a simple way to get fast cash out of your already established business then check out how I’m making $1729 per day with a simple one-page website. I break it all down over at 1pagefunnel.com, that’s the number one pagefunnel.com.