If you’ve ever downloaded a free report, booklet, book, video series or signed up to some sort of newsletter of email-based free course, you probably have ended up on a confirmation page. This page thanks you for signing up and it can give you some information regarding when you will receive the freebie that you are interested in.
If you looked at the rest of the page, a lot the times you’re going to see an offer. This is called a one-time offer. This type of offer also appears when you bought an item, usually a low-priced product like an e-book, a report or software.
It’s important to note that regardless of how you get to this page, it only appears once. That’s the whole point of the one-time offer. It truly is a one-time offer. You get it when you are really “hot” or really interested in a particular topic or subject matter. Its scarcity is what makes it so powerful.
Why Offer an OTO?
Answer: psychology. When people sign up to your list or download a paid or free item, they’re obviously very interested in solving a set of problems the downloaded item or signed up newsletter addresses. They ended up on your squeeze page because they’re interested in a particular set of needs that they have. This is not theoretical.
They’re not thinking about what their needs would be two months from now or a year from now. They’re actually involved with the issue now. They need a solution now. In other words, when people get to your OTO, they are near or at the height of their greatest need for a solution to a specific problem.
The OTO sells them a product or service that directly addresses or is closely related to the problem they are most
interested in solving. How do you know they are “hot”? They trusted you enough to enter their name and email address to get on your list, buy your product, or download your software.
How Does an OTO Work?
You have to get people to enter their email address and name. There are four common ways to do this. First, you can tell them that they would get certain information if they join your list. List members are promised a wide range of information involving a particular subject matter. This usually takes the form of an email-based course or a
Alternatively, you can offer a free e-book, a booklet, or some sort of “ethical digital bribe” to get their email address. For them to sign up to your list, you give them a booklet or something that they are truly interested in. This free downloadable digital product directly addresses certain problems that they are interested in solving.
The third approach involves collecting emails after people bought a product. Usually, this takes place near the end of the sales cycles. They buy a product, they pay for it, and then they get redirected to a download page that collects emails by promising them some sort of a digital freebie or newsletter involving something closely related to the
solution that they just bought.
Finally, you can collect emails by putting the email collection at the front of the sales process. Somebody goes through your site, they like what they see, they click to buy, and the first thing that greets them is not a payment form. This is not the form that they entered their PayPal email address in or credit card information. Instead, they seea simple form asking them for their name and email address.
Little do they know that even if they abandon the sales process, they end up on your mailing list. Once they optin, they then get redirected to the OTO page. All the processes I described above lead to an OTO page. That’s how an OTO works.
It’s still the same page and works the same way but getting there takes at least four different ways. Really creative marketers, I’m sure, have innovated additional approaches. However, the four common ways I described above should give you a place to start.
You can customize these. You can innovate on them. You can fit them to your particular set of circumstances.
Sounds good so far? Well, don’t get too excited. A lot of people build OTOs. In fact, it has become fairly routine and standard in the online marketing industry. As you can well imagine, when something becomes routine, people often drop the ball and they do.
Why Do Too Many OTOs Fail?
Failure Reason #1: Offer the Wrong OTO
The most basic mistake marketers make is they offer the wrong OTO. How do you know it’s the wrong OTO? First of all, it’s not selling. That’s a dead giveaway. However, digging deeper, the reason why the product is not moving is because it is not directly related to the set of problems of your audience. People who see your OTO have a certain set of problems.
They are hot regarding a particular set of solutions but your OTO has nothing to do with what they’re interested in.
At this point, your OTO is dead in the water. It is obvious to the people seeing your offer that it has nothing to do with what they are interested in. At the back of their minds, they’re asking “Why are you showing me this?”
Failure Reason #2: You Failed to Pump Up Enough Interest Before Showing Your OTO
As I mentioned above, getting people to the OTO page is pretty straightforward. There’s four general ways to get there. However, this is not automatic. This is not just a simple case of filling in the blanks, following the steps and you have yourself a collected email address.
You have to manage expectations before people get to your OTO page. You have to make the right promises to the right people at the right time to produce the right results.
Failure Reason #3: Use the OTO with the Wrong Email Collection Process
If you collect your email in a very confusing way or you create the wrong expectations along the way, your OTO is not going to work like it should. This is the bottom line. You have to make sure that the email collection process that you use must be geared towards people excited enough to want to buy something.
What Kind of OTOs Can I Offer?
The kind of OTOs you can offer truly depend on your imagination and creativity as well as your particular set of circumstances. I don’t mean to be slippery but this is how you have to approach it because if you are going to offer an OTO on an automatic or formulaic basis, you’re just going to fail. There, I said it. I don’t mean to depress you or
discourage you but that’s the truth.
You have to pay attention to the actual behavior of your customers. You know your market better than anybody else. You should play around with the OTOs that you offer. Run different OTOs two weeks at a time. Pump traffic to your squeeze page to study OTO behavior. Patterns should arise. At the very least, you should consider the
Rotate among them and pick the one that gets the most conversions. First, you can offer steep discounts on a product or service. For example, if I am offering an email-based autoresponder course on how to make money blogging, I can offer a steep discount on an automated blog system where people just select a topic and the
software does everything else. Do you see the connection?
Blogging takes a lot of time. It definitely can take a lot of effort because you have to figure out what to write, collect information, write out the information, get pictures, make sure your content is SEO compliant, so on and so forth. It takes a tremendous amount of attention to detail.
If you were to offer an OTO that automates all of that, people would sit up and pay attention. In this particular context, your autoresponder email course opens their minds to how much money they can make blogging but it also makes them fully aware of how much of a hassle blogging could be.
Once the OTO appears, they get a clear alternative. You can do the same with a free book or a “walled-off” part of your blog that really gives the viewer the inside scoop regarding a particular problem.
Another type of OTO you can offer is a bundle package. This usually takes the form of a product bundle. Somebody goes to your website and they can see that they can buy many different books separately and they are obviously interested enough in the topic to sign up to a mailing list, you can give them the news through your OTO that they can buy a large number of these books at a steep discount. This approach actually moves a lot of products.
Finally, you can use an OTO selling a product made by somebody else. I am, of course, talking about affiliate products. The secret here is to make sure that the affiliate product is closely related to your niche.
For example, if you are selling a book on how guys can pick up women, the OTO can involve a live dating coaching service or it can offer membership to a dating site that has a very good ratio of guys to women. This means that guys have a higher chance of meeting people because there’s less guys around.
I hope it’s clear to you that whatever affiliate product you choose to offer in your OTO, it has to be closely related to the niche of the freebie or autoresponder series or product that you just sold or people gave their email for.
Keys to OTO Success
Key #1: Thoroughly study how you collect your emails and use OTO to add value to
I want you to wrap your mind around this key principle. The OTO is supposed to add value. Keep repeating it like a mantra. Keep doing it until you understand it and memorize it. Why? A lot of marketers think that the OTO is a quick payday. This is true. People can and do make a lot of money with OTOs but it’s not about you. It’s about your customer.
If you understand this then you will make money. But if you think that the OTO is just a way to grab your viewers wallets, then you’re going to be sadly mistaken. The value that it adds must be obvious and the only way to do this is to go in with this mentality in place.
Key #2: Enhance your email collection sequence with OTO
It’s very easy to look at a typical squeeze page sequence as some sort of formula. You probably have picked up all sorts of online courses and people make a big deal out of sales funnels. If you read through these materials, they sound alike.
It’s as if they came from the same template. I’m telling you, if you’re going to build your business using some sort of formula that has been beaten to the ground since forever, you probably are not going to make much money.
What’s important to note is that your email collection sequence must add value to the experience of your user. That’s number one. That should be your highest priority. After you understand that, you would be ready to accept the possibility that maybe the OTO should be later in the sequence.
In other words, it might be better for you to not offer an OTO right after people sign up for their freebie. Maybe the best time for an OTO is when you start sending them email updates.
Key #3: Focus on your niche
The OTO must address the same problem or a closely related problem. Here’s the iron rule of OTO success. The further you are from the set of problems your freebie addresses, the less likely you will make money with your OTO. It doesn’t get any simpler than that. No need to overthink it. No need to over-complicate it.
Key #4: There has to be a heavy need
You have to make sure that when you drop your OTO, there has to be a heavy need for it. The good news here is you can pump up this sense of need.
Here’s how you do it. First of all, you make sure that your sales funnel pumps up their level of interest to a white-hot level. They are not thinking of maybe they should buy this. Instead they’re thinking along the lines of “I need to buy this. This is my highest priority right now.” You can do this. You can use the right pictures, the right text and
create the right scenario to get them to develop this high sense of urgency.
Once they buy something, even if it’s a low-cost item, pump up their need for the OTO by point out the fact that the OTO enhances the product they bought. One common example of this involves software. For example, you bought a piece of marketing software that you need for better SEO. As you know, SEO requires key words to deliver solid results.
You need to target the right key words. If somebody bought an SEO software that enables them to prospect for links, a key piece is missing. They need a keyword research tool or they can do this manually. So, when your OTO offers that easy-to-use keyword research tool, the user sees the direct connection between the product they already bought and the OTO product.
The genius behind this is that the main product that you just sold can be five dollars, something cheap, but the OTO is the product that would actually make the paid-for product so much more powerful or so much easier to use. If this is obvious to them, then they wouldn’t mind paying a lot more money for the OTO. This is how a lot of
software is actually positioned online.
Key #5: Do A/B testing
A/B testing is just a simple case of using different layouts and designs and alternating among them while pumping traffic to your squeeze page. The key here is to get a lot of email opt-ins and then swap out your OTO pages. Run each alternative OTO design maybe for a week and then run several designs and then see which design is the
strongest. This is, of course, the design that gets the most conversions.
Key #6: Use scarcity
There are many ways you can address consumers’ scarcity mindset. You can use a countdown timer for your special offer. You can set a specific date and then blank out the page. Whatever the case may be, appeal to people’s sense of scarcity.
Key #7: If you want to make the greatest profits, do this
If want to really take your OTO profitability to a whole other level, you only need to do one thing and one thing alone. What do you need to do? Create your own product. That’s right. Write your own e-book, get your own software coded, get an app program.
Whatever the case may be, create your own product. You get 100% of the sales price. You have a direct role to play on ensuring the quality of the product. You also can control the sales page that converts traffic into cash. People who make real money online usually, at some point, create their own product.
Use the information above to get a firm footing on OTO marketing. It is a specific subcategory of marketing. You have to wrap your mind around the issues I described above if you want to succeed with OTOs. OTOs can account from anywhere between 40% to 90% of your profits if you do them correctly.
Sadly, the vast majority of online marketers fail to truly leverage this amazing sales opportunity because they don’t know what they’re doing. Now you know so you don’t have an excuse. Read everything that I shared above and most importantly, act on them. I wish you nothing but the greatest success.