Ellen Britt: Interviewing for Sales
NICHE AFFILIATE MARKETING SYSTEM
MYNAMS Workshop with Ellen Britt:
THE IMPORTANCE OF INTERVIEWING FOR AFFILIATE SALES
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Ellen Britt: Interviewing for Sales
ELLEN BRITT: Award-winning Online Marketing Strategist and Amazon bestselling author Dr. Ellen Britt is the co-founder of Marketing Qi, where she teaches savvy women entrepreneurs (and a few cool men!) how to take their knowledge and expertise and transform it into Authentic Authority (tm). Drawing on her 22 years experience in emergency medicine, Ellen has honed her interviewing skills to a fine edge and has had the opportunity to interview many of the most well known names in internet marketing and self-development. Her training has also given her the gift of a precise, systematic way to analyze and solve business problems. She’s facilitated over a thousand of hours of tele-classes and is an expert at selling her high-ticket programs via preview teleseminars and in one-on-one phone conversations. In addition to her two decades of experience as a physician assistant, Ellen holds a master’s in psychology and a doctorate in biology. She’s professionally trained in hypnosis and guided imagery and uses these skills extensively with her high-end clients to help them achieve breakthrough business results. Ellen lives and works near Atlanta, Georgia
RESOURCES FROM ELLEN BRITT: Telesummit Success Secrets: Ellen’s four step system helps you discover the best techniques to build your email list while gaining incredible online visibility. With Ellen’s master teaching skills you’ll have a strategy to create your online business success faster than you ever thought possible.
DAVID PERDEW: David is the founder of NAMS – the Niche Affiliate Marketing System – one of the fastest growing affiliate marketing workshops and affiliate training systems available today. What makes NAMS so different is that the instructors TEACH, demonstrate, and enable the students with hands-on workshops. Students learn from their current experience level. Beginners work with beginners, Intermediates work with intermediates, and Advanced students work with advanced groups. Everyone talks the language they understand. Page 2 Copyright (©), All Rights Reserved Niche Affiliate Marketing System, Inc.
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Ellen Britt: Interviewing for Sales
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Ellen Britt: Interviewing for Sales
INTRODUCTION: In this presentation from Ellen Britt, you’ll learn about the importance of interviewing to grow your affiliate sales, including:
How to have a controlled but flexible conversation with your interviewee
How to extract full value from your interview
How to make your interviewee shine
How to sell online and sell during an interview
How to formulate your questions with research
How to work around a pre-provided question list from your interviewee
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Ellen Britt: Interviewing for Sales Ellen Britt: I’m Ellen Britt from Marketing Qi.com, that’s Marketing Qi. I’m not going to do a real formal introduction of myself because I’ve kind of got that worked into my presentation, so we’ll go with that and see. I’m going to talk today to you about the art of interviewing for affiliate sales. Now, don’t let the word art scare you off because there is an art to it, but it’s also learnable. The art comes, really, when you get more experience. I think when you heard Kevin speak about creating products, he used the example of interviewing and Mary certainly talked even more extensively about using interviews to make products and to make affiliate sales, so this is a really viable way to go. Now, I want to look at some mug shots here. This is Mr. Jeff Herring. Some of you have seen him already. He’s here at the conference. Jeff is an article marketer par excellence and a very, very skilled Internet marketer. We have the lovely Maritza Parra who is also a very skilled Internet marketer in her own right. Mr. Willie Crawford—he didn’t have a suit on today; I think he’s got a Hawaiian shirt as Willie likes to wear, but that’s all right. He’s a very nice man. I hope you’ll introduce yourself to Willie while you’re here. He’s a legend in Internet marketing. If you didn’t know that, he is. You should be honored to be at a conference where he’s speaking. Don’t pass up an opportunity to hear him. We’ve got Kathleen Gage who happens to be a good friend of mine and just an excellent marketer all the way around. I’ll get to the point of why I’m showing you all these mug shots here in a minute. Denise Wakeman who is just very, very well known for her skill at blogging. Anything you want to know about blogging, Denise knows it. And, of course, Lynn Terry. You all know her because everybody applauded for her this morning and we can applaud again. There’s Lynn. I’m a big fan of Lynn. Lynn is the affiliate marketer’s affiliate marketer. She really, really knows her stuff.
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Ellen Britt: Interviewing for Sales Bob “the Teacher” Jenkins. I’m not sure if Bob is here yet. Did he just get here? Bob is a brilliant marketer and came from a non-marketing background. He was a teacher, a high school teacher, and I’m sure you’ll probably get to hear his story a little later on in the conference. All right. What does this entire group have in common? That’s pretty easy, right? They’re all skilled Internet marketers and they’re all faculty members here at NAMS3, so that’s a pretty easy question. I didn’t want to put you on the spot too much. Let’s look at some more folks. You all know this guy, right? Tillman. All right? The beard. He used to be bald-headed, he’s not anymore. I think this man made over a million dollars his first year out of the gate with no products of his own, using interviews. Take heart. I saw Tillman a few weeks ago at Matt Bacak’s and Mark Joiner’s “Survival Tactics for Tough Times” seminar which was held here in Atlanta. Tillman was out in the hall most of the time barefooted talking on his cell phone. He’s running across the United States right now barefooted to raise money for homeless teens. He’s raising a lot of money. He’s an outrageous marketer. A lot of people don’t like him; I love him. He’s got his own style, but I’ve learned a lot from Tillman. He’s a very, very skilled Internet marketer. This is Mr. Mark Joyner. He’s known as the godfather of Internet marketing. Hi, Bob. I was just talking about you. Your ears were burning, right? Mr. Mark Joyner, the godfather of Internet marketing. This must be a new picture because Mark usually had this icon that he wouldn’t let anybody see his picture, but anyway, he’s a legend—a legendary Internet marketer—very, very skilled. This is Dr. Joe Vitale known now more for his work in the metaphysical realm. He was in the movie, The Secret, and all that good stuff, but Joe started out as an Internet marketer, par excellence. He used to be known as “Mr. Fire” a copywriter. His copy would set your sales on fire, I guess, I don’t know, but he’s also a very skilled Internet marketer. This is Mr. Ryan Lee. He started out as a physical education trainer of some such in a high school environment, I think, I believe in New Jersey, but Ryan has gone on to become a very successful Internet marketer. He runs a multi-million dollar Internet marketing business. Some of you may have attended Ryan’s “Continuity Summit.” He’s a fine fellow. Very nice. This is Mr. Dave Lakhani. Dave will be the first to tell you he grew up in a cult and he took those lessons that he learned growing up in a cult and learned all about the art of persuasion and
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Ellen Britt: Interviewing for Sales that’s what he teaches people about, the art of persuasion. After all, as Internet marketers, we’re all about persuasion, aren’t we? He’s very, very good at it. This is Kendall SummerHawk. This is back before she rebranded herself a few years ago. She called herself “the horse whisperer for business.” She’s now known as the money marketing and soul coach. She has skyrocketed with her business. They did two million dollars in sales last year, coaching business. She’s very, very successful. Mr. Andy Wibbles, a good friend and the writer of a book called, Blog Wild! Andy was on the forefront of blogging. He was blogging before anybody else was blogging. He now works for Type Pad in addition to having his own business, The Blog Hosting Company. Melanie Benson Strict, she’s the CEO of The Coaches to CEOs. Very, very successful woman. Melania Lachinski, risen to the top of the coaching world, very successful at what she does with Internet marketing. An immigrant to this country, she worked very, very hard. I admire her very, very much. Now, let’s take all of those folks and combine them with our NAMS faculty members and what does this entire group have in common? Well, of course, they’re all skilled Internet and affiliate marketers. Let’s throw in one last group. This is Lynne McTaggart. If you follow the metaphysical stuff, she wrote a best-selling book called, The Field. She’s an author based out of the UK, a very successful author. This is Dr. Jean Houston. This woman has a biography that is probably eight pages long. Her work has been recognized by the UN, by the Clinton White House. She has too many awards to even name. She’s an absolute legend. Marci Shimoff, the best New York Times best-selling author, Happy For No Reason. Some of you may have that book. Marci has a new book out. Does anybody know the title of Marci’s new book? I think it has love in the title, but anyway, I’m sure she’ll be just as successful with this book as she was with Happy For No Reason. This is Choi Lim, who is a master chi-gong practitioner from Milwaukee, Wisconsin. He is now working with the Mayo Clinic to develop some innovative energy medicine work for patients with cancer. A very, very impressive man. He’s a lot older than he looks. Page 8 Copyright (©), All Rights Reserved Niche Affiliate Marketing System, Inc.
Ellen Britt: Interviewing for Sales This is Dave Buck who is the CEO of CoachVille which he kind of semi-inherited from Thomas Leonard when Thomas passed away. Very successful. This is Peggy McCall, a New York Times best-selling author and, forgive me, I can’t remember right now off the top of my head the name of Peggy’s book. She’s very, very successful. They’re all very successful. This last group. They’re not NAMS faculty, of course. Looking at, now, what they have in common, they’re not NAMS faculty and I don’t mean to insult them, but I don’t believe their main focus is Internet or affiliate marketing. What do all these folks have in common, the whole, whole group? Me. They’ve all been interviewed by me. They’ve all been interviewed by me. So what? Okay. So what? Money. I’ve sold tens of thousands of dollars of these people’s products through my affiliate link. And I’ve also created products and other things through using those interviews, the transcripts of those interviews, and multi-purposing them in many ways. Let’s talk about numbers a little bit. I built just one of my lists to over 17,000 names in less than a year using interviews. Naturally, I’ve been able to monetize that as well. So there’s money and there are also numbers. People, when they’re first getting started out in marketing, think that the money is the thing, but it’s the numbers because your list is your asset. As an affiliate marketer, sometimes I don’t think that people put enough emphasis on that. I see that gentleman back there nodding his head. What’s your name, sir? I’m sorry? Ellen Britt: Clarence. Why are you nodding your head? I’m sorry. I forgot. I was going to be good and give him the microphone. Clarence: I was nodding when you said something about the list. Ellen Britt: The list. What’s been your experience? Clarence: The list is your asset. Ellen Britt: That’s right. Absolutely. Your list is your asset. Now, you can drive traffic using various methods over to products and sell through your affiliate link without having a list, make no mistake, you can do that, but to make permanent, long-standing money, even as an affiliate marketer, you need a list. That’s how Tillman made his fortune. Now, of course, he has lots of his own products, but he did not. That’s what I mean by the numbers.
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Ellen Britt: Interviewing for Sales I have made many products and many valuable bonuses using interviews that I have done with other people. I use their expertise, not my own. Their expertise. Who is this? It’s Larry King. Why is he famous? He hangs out with famous people. He’s not really famous in his own right. You could say that about Oprah, about Terry Gross who does NPR’s Fresh Air, a lot of the famous interviews, they become famous, though, but they started out by hanging out with famous people. This is what I call “the Larry King effect.” Let’s look another result. An Internet presence is a global presence. You’re not confined to a market within the United States. I’ve been able, now, I get JV offers practically every day of the week as I’m sure many of the people who are sitting here in this room do. That gentleman there and Bob and those folks, you’ll get more than you can handle. Invitations to speak at events like this or just to be on someone else’s teleseminar series or to endorse products. And I’ve been able to attract a group of private platinum clients from around the globe, including Australia and South Africa. Several of those clients are here at the conference today, although I don’t see any of them in this room. That’s because I ordered them to go to the more advanced class so that’s why they’re not here. Our focus today is going to be on affiliate marketing in particular and not in producing products and stuff like that, but I want you to be aware of all the benefits that can accrue to you by using this method. Here’s Mike for the same slide. Why should you listen to me? I was always impressed with Mike because he says, “Where’s my ‘Why should you listen to me?’ kind of slide?” because I don’t have any profession interviewing credentials. Didn’t Oprah work in, like, some TV station, she was a reporter or something, first? Yeah. And Larry King, I think, might’ve been a reporter before, I don’t know. Terry Gross has a degree in journalism or something. I don’t have any of that stuff. My background was about as far away as you can get from marketing. In fact, I worked in an emergency room for about 22 years as a Physician Assistant. I specialized in urgent care and emergency medicine. I have a couple of other degrees, a Master’s in Psychology and a Doctorate in Biology. And so, I was really, really removed from Internet marketing. I spent most of my time, over 22 years, seeing thousands of patients and only a lot later did I realize that I had interviewed thousands of patients because you have to start out with the questions, you don’t just run and start treating somebody. I saw things such as people with heart attacks, I treated broken Page 10 Copyright (©), All Rights Reserved Niche Affiliate Marketing System, Inc.
Ellen Britt: Interviewing for Sales bones, sewed up a lot of lacerations, got things out of people’s eyes, removed fish hooks out of people’s other parts, and done a lot of things and seen a lot of things that you don’t want to ever ask me about. I had my fill of it. I worked a lot of long hours, a lot of 2:00 PM to 2:00 AM, three days on, four days off, blah, blah, blah. It’s not a nice living, but I learned a lot from working in medicine. One of the most important things that I learned from my time in medicine that I apply to my business and that I think that, if there is only one thing that you carry away from my talk today and it really doesn’t have anything to do in particular with affiliate marketing interviewing, well, it does, but with your entire business is this—it’s the quality of the questions you ask that will determine the quality of the results you get and the quality of the results you get will determine the number of clients you pick up, the money you make. Fortunately, the quality of those questions is not life or death like it was sometimes for me in the emergency room, so you can relax just a little bit. Let me just tell you a little story just to illustrate. This is kind of a composite thing from all my years in the emergency room, this is not a true client. Let’s say a middle-aged man brings his elderly mom into the emergency room. He sits her down with a triage nurse here and says, “Mom slipped in the kitchen, sprained her ankle,” but the triage nurse looks at her and, you know, she’s in pretty good shape, she hobbled in on her son’s arm, they didn’t bring her in on a stretcher. Her vital signs are stable, so the triage nurse says, “Okay. Sprained ankle,” and sends her back to me. Well, there’s a decision point there. Now, if I were a beginner in medicine, I might say, “Oh, how’d you hurt your ankle?” She’ll say, “Well, you know, I slipped in the kitchen. It’s nothing. It’s nothing. I should be at home. I should be working doing my dishes, but you know how sons are, they worry too much. He insisted I come in.” Well, if I went down that road and I could, I would’ve taken an x-ray, I would’ve looked at it and I could see, well, there is some soft tissue swelling there, the joint looks intact, there is no fracture, so I would advise her to take some Tylenol—you don’t want to give an old person Page 11 Copyright (©), All Rights Reserved Niche Affiliate Marketing System, Inc.
Ellen Britt: Interviewing for Sales Advil, it will eat a hole in their stomach—put some ice on it and elevate her ankle. Follow up with your orthopedist on a call in a couple of days if she’s not better. She’s happy, the son’s happy, and they go home. Because I’m not a beginner in medicine or I wasn’t—I don’t do that anymore—I might’ve said, “Tell me exactly what happened to you and why you’re here today.” Nothing about her ankle. “What brought you in?” “Well, I fell and hurt my ankle,” she says. “I live alone.” I would say, “So no one saw you fall?” She says, “Well, no. Nobody exactly did see me fall.” I would say, “Well, tell me exactly what you remember.” “Well, truthfully, I don’t remember. I was walking in from my livingroom and the next thing, I was on the floor.” Now, it’s not just a sprained ankle, it’s she had an unexplained syncopal episode which is a fancy medical term for fainting episode of unknown cause. Why could that have happened? It could’ve been from a deadly cardiac arrhythmia that was momentary that caused her to lose consciousness. It could’ve been anemia from an unknown source or an incomplete source, a laundry list of differential diagnoses that warrants a call to her internist, she’s probably hospitalized overnight with a monitor or at least put on an outpatient halter monitor to see if she’s having some kind of deadly thing and maybe her life was saved from the quality of the question. Not that I expect you to be medical diagnosticians listening to this, but you get the point, right? It’s the quality of the questions you ask that determine the quality of the answers that you get and the quality of the answers you get will determine the quality of the results that you get. The good news is you can learn it, you don’t have to go to medical school and do all this stuff, cut up a cadaver and do all those other unpleasant things. You can learn this. Let’s talk a little bit about using interviews to make affiliate sales.
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Ellen Britt: Interviewing for Sales Now, the basic model here, one basic model, would be to interview someone about their area of expertise and make a product out of it and you can go that route, but the other way you could do it is to approach product owners, people who already have products and who have established affiliate programs, so you become an affiliate of that product owner. And then you promote their product to your list. This is why we were talking about the importance of list building. You promote that product to your list and, if you’ve got an interview that you’ve done with that person, that’s a whole lot more credible than sending out an email saying buy this product, isn’t it? You can say, “Hey, I did this interview with John Smith. He’s a backyard bird feeding expert,” and your list is composed of people who are into backyard bird feeding and bird watchers and stuff which, don’t laugh, it’s a big niche. It’s a big niche. Well, I know, I didn’t mean to pick on you, I know what you mean. There are more niches out there than Carter has got liver pills, as my late gramma would’ve said. Can you tell I’m a southerner? Yeah. You want to try to build your list; if I could say nothing else besides the quality thing, please start to build your list yesterday, not today or tomorrow, start building your list today. You could promote these interviews to your list and sell the product through your affiliate link. Now, if you don’t have a list, don’t despair, now, because of social media, you could also promote your interview through social media. You could put a link to your interview up on your blog and the go over to Twitter and Facebook and say, “Hey, I just did this great interview with Bob, who’s this bird feeding expert. He told me three unique ways to attract birds to your backyard that I’ve never heard of before. Curious?” Sheila, get a microphone. I’m going to be good. You’re enrolled, right? You’re such a Twitterer. Sheila: In order for Twitter and Facebook to be effective, you still need to have a list. Ellen Britt: Well, you have to have followers. Sheila: Right. Page 13 Copyright (©), All Rights Reserved Niche Affiliate Marketing System, Inc.
Ellen Britt: Interviewing for Sales Ellen Britt: That’s not the same as an email list and people say, well, I don’t have many followers on Twitter. That doesn’t matter. I heard someone say this morning about the magnification effect. You don’t know how many followers your followers have or who’s going to re-Tweet something out there so your reach, even though you may only have a few hundred or a few thousand followers, your reach may be into the millions. If somebody picks that up and says, “Wow. That sounds really interesting,” and they re-Tweet it, other people pick it up and re-Tweet it, you have more reach than you know, so don’t become discouraged at a relatively small Twitter following. You can build that over time, but it’s not absolutely necessary to have a lot of success with social media. In terms of selling, there is a couple of things. If you’re charging people to come and listen to this interview, that’s paid content and you’ll probably want to do a very softball offer of the course of this product at the end of the call or have the person do a softball offer at the end of the call. If it’s a free thing and people are coming and listening to this interview, then your person that you’re talking to has a little bit more leeway to make it a little bit harder push. You’re talking. Let’s go back to our bird feeding thing. They’re talking about the benefits and, hopefully, your audience is going to walk away with more information about attracting birds to your backyard than they did when they came in, but you want it to be interesting information and useful information, but incomplete so that they will want to buy the person’s product. You’re probably going to want to maybe refer to the produce and say, “You know, Bob, we only have an hour here and you know so much, I’m sure you go into this in much more depth in your product, ‘The Beginner’s Guide to Bird Feeding,’” or whatever it is. And so, you as an interviewer will want to help them along. An experienced Internet marketer who has a product will know how to sell online and sell during an interview, but sometimes if you approach product owners, they don’t know anything about selling, and so, you have to have to kind of be savvy and help them sell it because—we’ll get into some of these mistakes in just a minute, so I’ll hold off on there. Let’s get into the real meat here. A lot of people ask me, they say, “Ellen, isn’t an interview just a list of pre-prepared questions that you read out? How hard can it be?” Well, it can be a list of pre-prepared questions that you read out like a robot, but that’s not going to be a very effective interview.
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Ellen Britt: Interviewing for Sales Many of the people that I’ve interviewed that I showed you in those slides told me that the interview they did with me is one of the best they have ever done. And I have had several of those people say, “If you want to interview me again, you just call me up,” because I did my research. Now, an interview—just to get into a definition of what I think an interview is—it’s a controlled, but flexible conversation between you and your speaker. I’m going to call it a speaker because I get mixed up when I say the interviewer and the interviewee, so I’m just going to say the speaker, okay? A controlled, but flexible conversation between you and your speaker, but there’s also a third party and that is your audience so you have to keep that in mind. Your job as an interviewer is twofold during the interview. You need to extract value from your speaker. Full value. Your job is to extract value. Sometimes you can get a person on there, they’ll ramble on and on and on and on and it’s your job—your audience is sitting out there saying, “Why is she just letting them go off on a tangent here?” You’ve got to understand, you’ve got to treat your person right, but you’ve got to keep your audience in mind, so you’ve got to extract as much value as you can from the person that you’re interviewing. I hope I’m allowed to use this term now because Ally Brown has cooped it for her Shine event, but I don’t think she’s trademarked it, so it should be fine. Maybe I should put an affiliate link there because she’s having another one. Your second job is to make your speaker shine. Now, a lot of people treat their people that they’re interviewing like they were a criminal. They’re going to interrogate them. Who is morally safer on 60 Minutes, they want to get something out of them that nobody else knows. Well, you might, but you’re not going to do it with interrogation and, if you do it once, that speaker will never, ever have you interview them again and you’ll get a bad reputation. Let’s just talk for a second then about what it takes to have a speaker like you want to call you up and say, “Interview me anytime.” It takes preparation. I spend an average of about four hours of time for every hour of interviewing that I’m doing. That sounds like a lot. I’ve heard some people say, well, you know, if you want to be interviewed, you just send them a list of pre-prepared questions. A lot of times I will ask my folks, especially if I don’t know a lot about the topic myself, a lot of people will just send you pre-prepared questions, but I never, never—it’s not that I don’t ever use some of the questions, I never use them in the order in which they send them, I never ask them the question in the same verbiage, I switch it up, and I always have questions of my own because if you’ve got a list of pre-prepared questions that you’re used to saying over and over again, the interview loses its freshness. Page 15 Copyright (©), All Rights Reserved Niche Affiliate Marketing System, Inc.
Ellen Britt: Interviewing for Sales You’re going to go on Blog Talk Radio, you’re going to hear Bob being interviewed about bird feeders, and then you’re going to go over here to this other Blog Talk Radio show and you’re going to hear Bob again. It’s the same questions and the same answers. You didn’t hear anything new. You want to keep your materials fresh by doing a lot of preparation and, believe me, it’s going to impress your speakers because most people don’t do it. All you’ve got to do is a little extra effort and you’re going to shine. Ask yourself, first of all, what is the purpose of the interview that I’m doing? Are you trying to make content and are your people paying for it? That’s going to be a very different interview than the one where you’re doing just a free thing and they’re going to sell their product at the end. So ask yourself, “What is the purpose of this?” That can be generalized to a lot of other things within your business, too. A lot of people just go off and say I’ve got this idea. I’m going to do this and then I’m going to do that. Always step back and ask yourself, “Why am I doing this? What is the purpose?” What specific three things to get out of an NAMS event this time when I’m coming? Why am I doing this interview? Do that for everything. That’s the first step. A lot of my clients, they skip over that step and I have to say, “Whoa, Nellie! Back up. Let’s look at why you want to do that.” Then you have to ask yourself, “Who is my audience?” Now, chances are, if it’s Bob your audience is probably people who are interested in attracting birds to their backyard, you’ve got to make sure that you have a message to market back. You’re not going to interview Bob about model trains if you’ve got an audience of people who are interested in learning more about bird feeding in your backyard. Believe it or not, I’ve seen people go way off the track with that, so you need to keep that in mind. Let me just check my time here. Okay.
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Ellen Britt: Interviewing for Sales I already talked a bit about the formulation of questions and how to do that. When I have a potential person I’m going to interview and they’ve already agreed, I go to their Web site and I dig around, I look through their bio—by the way, when I take their bio from their page, I don’t ever read it like the way it’s written, ever, ever, ever. It’s old. It’s boring. I dig through their blog. I look at their blog archives. I was interviewing Wendy Weiss once, the “Queen of Cold-Calling” and I found out on her blog that she played Peter Rabbit or something in some Royal Ballet Theatre’s production at Madison Square Garden or something. It was public information but it was buried and I brought that out on the interview and she laughed out loud. She thought that was the greatest thing. The audience loved it, too. That was just a little example of a piece of information that I had that surprised her and she never forgot it. You want to look at their blog. You want to look at their Web sites. If they have a book, I go and purchase it or I get it from the library. Don’t wait too late if you want to get their book, though. If it’s not at the library or it’s not at the local bookstore, you may have to order it. I’ve gotten myself into a couple of binds and then I had to run around and pay more money than I wanted to get the book. Those are some of the things I do. I will take their questions as a jumping off point and reword them sometimes. And always, when you’re doing the interview itself, as the interview is going along, you want to leave yourself some room to maneuver. If they say something and that sparks something with you, you’re acting in the place of your audience and you’re thinking, oh, wow, that’s a really interesting point. Let me drill down here a little bit to get some more value for my audience by asking them this related question. “Oh, can you give us some examples of this?” and broaden it out a little bit. You don’t want to stick to that BOOM-BOOM repetitious list of questions because you’re not doing yourself or your audience any service at all. Usually, what I’ll do is I’ll circle the questions that I absolutely want to get answered and everything else is kind of filler. As I’m going down the row, if it’s on the telephone, if I’ve already asked that question, I strike it off. It’s easy to get mixed up and you don’t want to ask them the question twice, that’s a little bit embarrassing to do that. It happened to me once; it didn’t ever happen again because I crossed it off.
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Ellen Britt: Interviewing for Sales Again, you don’t want to be an interrogator here, right? You want to be nice. Play nice with people. They’re giving you their time and their energy and it doesn’t come across well with the audience. It has its place in investigative journalism, but we’re not investigative journalists. Now, I want to teach you how to kill an interview in seven easy steps. I think sometimes we learn best by looking at what other people have done. I’ve made some of these mistakes. I don’t make them anymore. Number #1. Always use closed-ended questions. Always. “Well, Bob, you are just this magnificent bird attraction specialist and you’ve made all this money and you’re just terribly, terribly successful. This must’ve been really hard for you, wasn’t it?” “Nope.” He’s from Maine. “Nope.” That’s all you get. You think, “Uh-oh, what do I ask him now?” “Bob, you’re this very successful backyard bird-feeding expert. Our audience would love it if you would take us step-by-step through the process of how you accomplished this.” Now, Bob’s got a wide open field. Step one, step two, step three, if he’s prepared. Sometimes you have to drag them along a little bit. Number #2. Always cut your interview short because you ran out of questions. That’s very, very embarrassing. You have no way to predict, especially when you’re interviewing someone for the first time, how much they’re going to go on with each question. Some people may say three worlds and that’s it and you get six questions down your list and you’re thinking, “Uh-oh, I’m going to run out of questions and we’re only 10 minutes into this hour interview. What am I going to go?” Been there, done that. I have, as a rule of thumb, no less than 18 questions for every hour of interview that I do. I hardly ever use them all, sometimes I only use a few. Eighteen is my minimum. Eighteen is not a magic number, it’s just something that has worked for me in the past. That’s the fix. I got ahead of myself. Number #3. Running over your speaker. It’s your show. Yeah, let me give you my opinion on that. “Oh, Bob, that reminds me of a story about the time I was feeding birds. Oh, yeah, my grandma…” blah, blah, blah. It’s your job to make your speaker shine, so please, don’t talk over your speaker. A lot of people will not give Page 18 Copyright (©), All Rights Reserved Niche Affiliate Marketing System, Inc.
Ellen Britt: Interviewing for Sales the speaker room. They’ll ask a question. The speaker will say something, pause to take a breath, and they’re off to the next question. Sometimes the best information from your speaker will come after the pause. Don’t be afraid to do just a little bit of dead airtime. Now, in a teleseminar, you can’t afford to do too much, but you’ll learn and you’ll step on people sometimes, it happens. Sometimes I say, “Ooops, sorry, I didn’t appear to me you were finished. I’m really sorry. I didn’t mean to step on you. Can you finish your thought?” That’s okay to do that. It’s fine. Number #4. Wait until the last minute to promote your product or your affiliate link. “Oh, my gosh, Bob! It’s two seconds to the hour. You were going to have an offer, weren’t you, that you were going to tell our folks about?” Speakers don’t like that. They don’t like that. The fix is seed your affiliate offer throughout your questions by referring, “I know we can’t get into this in real depth right now, but you’ll know more about this product and Bob’s going to tell us about this really special offer in just a few minutes.” That kind of thing. Don’t wait until the last minute. Now, sometimes, this can be your speaker’s fault. They’ll go on and on and never mention it and it’s up to you to seed that thing in if they’re not an experienced seller. Do not wait until the last minute. Number #5. Here is your affiliate link and you’re trying to say this on the phone, “www my domain name, forward slash, underscore, 934, ampersand, question mark equals 37689, everybody got that?” And then you go on and nobody’s got that and nobody’s going to buy your product. You have to have something that is easy to spell and say over the phone. “Your domain name dotcom, forward slash, Bob, Bob is all lower case, let me repeat that.” “www, dot, Y-O-U-R-D-O-M-A-I-N-N-A-M-E, Your Domain Name dotcom, forward slash, Bob, BO-B. Bob is all lower case. www.yourdomainname.com/Bob. Has everybody got that? Yeah. Everybody’s got that. Number #6. Refuse to answer emails from people who have bought your speaker’s product through your affiliate link. It’s his problem now, they’re his customers, aren’t they? No. No. Page 19 Copyright (©), All Rights Reserved Niche Affiliate Marketing System, Inc.
Ellen Britt: Interviewing for Sales They send you emails, “I couldn’t order Bob’s product. I tried,” or worse yet, “I ordered Bob’s product and I paid for it and, now, they haven’t sent it to me, it’s been six weeks.” Well, ask Bob. No. No. You write to Bob, forward the email to him, “My subscriber ordered your product six weeks ago. Here is their receipt. They’ve never received it. Will you please look into it and see that this customer gets the product?” Then follow up to make sure. Otherwise, the subscriber is not only going to be made with Bob, he’s going to be mad with you, too. Number #7. Always allow live questions on your teleseminar no matter how embarrassing they are to your speaker. Let the questioner run on and on and on and on and take over the teleseminar. No. Use technology like “Instant Teleseminar” something that has an interface where people can type in questions or, if you’re more low tech than that, get people to submit questions prior to the call via email. Screen the questions. Just because people have submitted questions does not mean you have to ask them of your speaker because they don’t all make sense. Some people will formulate questions that are 16 paragraphs long and that’s just not just appropriate, so you have to act as the screen. You may get nasty emails from the people who submitted the questions saying, “You didn’t answer my question,” but tough toots, right? Bonus Technique. Always assume that your audience knows everything your speaker is talking about. You have to recap your audience. If Bob comes out, say Bob is a medical expert, “Well, you just press on the sternocleidomastoid muscle and then you…” What? The sternocleid—how do you spell that, Bob? Even if you know more about the topic than your speaker, which has happened to me on occasion—I see some heads nodding; yeah, you know more—it’s not your job to say you know more than the speaker. “Bob, let me clarify that for our audience. Did you say sternocleidomastoid? Can we spell that?” You’ve got to go back and summarize things. “Now, wait, Bob, before you go ahead, let’s review these three points. Number one, build your list. Number two…” whatever it is. You’ve got to recap things for your audience. They are going to get much more value from your talk if you’ll do this for them. Remember, the main benefits of you being an interviewer for someone is the Larry King Effect. You all impressed I interviewed all those folks? Yeah. You could do the same. Page 20 Copyright (©), All Rights Reserved Niche Affiliate Marketing System, Inc.
Ellen Britt: Interviewing for Sales Content creation. Instant content creation when you have an interview. You can have it transcribed. You’ve got an audio, you’ve got a valuable product right there. Affiliate sales through your link. I’ve sold tens of thousands of dollars of products through affiliate sales. Questions? Unidentified Audience Member: How did you approach the individuals that you interviewed? How did you connect with them? Ellen Britt: I learned from trial and experience the best way to approach them. I teach that stuff to my high end platinum clients. Yes, I do. Unidentified Audience Member: Can you explain exactly how you would get someone like Joe Vitale Ellen Britt: Dr. Joe Vitale. Of how I got Dr. Joe Vitale? Unidentified Audience Member: Yes. Exactly. Ellen Britt: Yes, sir, I’ll tell you exactly how I got Dr. Joe Vitale. I had a friend who knew the woman he lives with. I made contact with that person, I never spoke to Dr. Vitale until the moment he got on the phone for the interview and we had five hundred people on the line. I worked all through this person, through email, I never spoke to him. He got on the phone, he acted like we were best friends. It was a great interview. I interviewed him about his book, Zero Limits. Nice man, but I never could’ve reached him if I hadn’t had a contact. Now, that’s not true with everyone, but in that particular case, it was. Unidentified Audience Member: Regarding production creation on these interviews, do you have an approach that you use to secure permission? For example, if I were to interview you and then sell that product, that end result, for $27 and a report, what’s a likely scenario for that in terms of either revenue sharing or how would I would approach you about permission? Ellen Britt: If I’m selling a product and you’re selling it through your affiliate link, honky dory. Great. I don’t care, but you need to discuss that with your individual speaker. Some people get releases. I’ve started doing that now, but I didn’t used to, I probably should have. It’s always better to err on the side of caution when you’re doing that. Discuss that with your individual speakers and just don’t assume, but if they’re selling an affiliate product, you’ve already discussed an affiliate commission ahead of time and if you want to put that interview out there to two million people, it’s fine with me. It just gives me more exposure. Yes. Page 21 Copyright (©), All Rights Reserved Niche Affiliate Marketing System, Inc.
Ellen Britt: Interviewing for Sales Unidentified Audience Member: Legally—I’m not an attorney… Ellen Britt: He plays one on TV, though. Unidentified Audience Member: I’ve represented myself in federal court. You’ve produced the audio of the interview. It’s yours. You have copyrights. If the interviewee has agreed to give you the interview and you can get that agreement, you know by way of the introduction you can get that implicit agreement , “ Thank you Dr. Vitale for agreeing to speak with us today…blah blah blah Ellen Britt: That’s an excellent point. Unidentified Audience Member: I have one question. Kathleen Gage, today, talked about she doesn’t like to go down the road unless she already knows that her list wants the information. I can’t decide what your people would want you to interview about. How do you decide what your audience wants to hear? Ellen Britt: You can survey your list. Unidentified Audience Member: You do that? Ellen Britt: Yes. I’ve surveyed my list. Sometimes, though, you know, a list is like a living organism and you kind of get a feel for what they want and how they are. You get emails from people and this and that. You also know what topics they’ve responded to in the past by how many people signed up or how many people bought a product. If I have a big teleseminar series, I can tell, by product sales, how people responded to a certain topic or a certain speaker; I’m going to do more of that. It might be a little simplistic answer, but I wouldn’t over think it. Unidentified Audience Member: Ellen, talk a little bit about how you built your list initially. The people who you were interviewing, did they promote it? Ellen Britt: They all promote it. They all promote it to my squeeze page. It’s nice to see about 6,000 names coming in, in a week. Page 22 Copyright (©), All Rights Reserved Niche Affiliate Marketing System, Inc.
Ellen Britt: Interviewing for Sales Unidentified Audience Member: I’ve got a two-part question, I guess. First, how important is celebrity amongst the—everybody you interviewed is kind of well known. Ellen Britt: I only put the celebrities up there. I’ve interviewed some non-celebrities, too. Unidentified Audience Member: Relative to the topic or discussion, so if you were interviewing me about Internet marketing, nobody is going to know who I am. Ellen Britt: Yes, but if you’ve got good information and my list wants it, it doesn’t matter. Unidentified Audience Member: Right, so it’s the information? Ellen Britt: Right. I do large teleseminar events—I’m sorry? There you are. I will. Come closer to me. Unidentified Audience Member: The second part to that is, is one hour kind of a magic number? Going over that, you start to lose people? Ellen Britt: I have interviewed people for longer when it was for a product, but for people listening to it, I don’t like to go more than an hour. For one thing, speakers don’t like it. They don’t like to stay on that long. So I like to keep my interviews at an hour. Some people are doing shorter interviews. I was in Carrie Wilkerson, The Barefoot Executive Series, I went to the Women’s Wildfire Rally, she interviewed me for 15 minutes. It was this laser thing. I don’t know. I like to go an hour. That’s just my personal preference. Going back to the celebrity thing, if you’re doing a large teleseminar event, sometimes if you can get a big name on there, it’s easier to get other people to agree because they want to have their face up there with them. “Oh, that’s Joe Vitale. I want to be on the same panel with him.” It’s the Larry King effect, again. Unidentified Audience Member: I just want to add a little to what you said back there. I’ve done a ton of interviewing and it never dawned on me to do it for my business. Ellen Britt: Duh! Now, you know. Unidentified Audience Member: I’ve done a lot of oral history interviews. I also did a lot of interviews with very, very successful business women who were going to receive awards. I’ve found two things. Number one, I always had a better interview if I made my focus having a conversation. Sometimes I go back and look and I go, “Uh-oh, I didn’t ask this really crucial question,” but I ended up with a fabulous interview because we’re just talking. I’m listening.
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Ellen Britt: Interviewing for Sales I’m asking you questions. I’m listening. From what you say, I then ask you another question, so I really urge people to have a conversation and don’t focus on the questions. Ellen Britt: That’s an excellent point, but I do a blend of that. My question is in there and then, if they say something that takes me in a certain direction, I may veer away completely from the questions I have prepared and just go down that road because it’s so intriguing and I know it’s going to be so valuable. Unidentified Audience Member: The other thing that I’ve found, which I was very surprised it and I was very hesitant, was all kinds of very, very well-known people will agree to this even though they’ve never heard of you. They like to be interviewed. It’s publicity for them. Even if you have to go through a gatekeeper, even if you stay with the gatekeeper the whole time, you still end up with the interview. I was only turned down once in all the interviews that I’ve done. Ellen Britt: Yes. Unidentified Audience Member: Addressing your point about having the conversation and going back to what Ellen said about having three or four very important, you know, the crucial, what you consider the crucial questions, as long as you make sure you get those in the course of the conversation, then you’ve really done both. You’ve blended. I think that’s a primary thing because you’re going to advertise your seminar, teleseminar or whatever, based on potentially disclosing this information from so-and-so. It’s not just, “Hey, I did an interview with Joe Vitale,” you’ve got to lead them in sometimes; you’ve got to bring them in. You bring them in with the promise that they’re going to get answers to certain things and those are the key questions and the fact that there is much, much more information there by virtue of this conversation just makes it that much better. No question. Ellen Britt: Excellent.
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Ellen Britt: Interviewing for Sales Unidentified Audience Member: Hi, Ellen. Did you ever have it where you didn’t have a live audience for when you first started, you just did the interview with them and then did the, “Hey, there’s this interview…” Ellen Britt: I started out with a live audience. The first thing I did—well, I had been a fairly experienced teleseminar leader just doing classes and things, but the first time I did the interview thing, I did a large joint venture event where I had twelve speakers and it was live. Any other questions? Speak now or forever hold your peace, although I will be around during the weekend and I’d be happy to talk to anybody who would like to discuss it further. I thank you for your attention. I hope that you learned something. (Applause) Announcer: You’ve been listening to Ellen Britt, this is NAMS3, “The Importance of Interviewing for Affiliate Sales.” Ellen Britt: Thank you very much.
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Ellen Britt: Interviewing for Sales
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Ellen Britt: Interviewing for Sales
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