Author Archives: Jeremy Schoemaker

About Jeremy Schoemaker

Jeremy "ShoeMoney" Schoemaker is the founder & CEO of the ShoeMoney Blog, Elite Retreat Internet Conference, & the PAR Program. In 2013 Jeremy released his #1 Amazon Best selling Autobiography titled "Nothing's Changed But My Change" - The ShoeMoney Story. Jeremy currently lives in Lincoln Nebraska with his wife and 2 daughters.

How Your Company Can Learn from the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge

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You might be living under a rock if you haven’t heard about the ice bucket challenge to raise awareness for ALS.

All month long, social media has been inundated with videos of people getting buckets of ice water dumped on them. Those people accepted the “challenge.” In the video, they also pass along the challenge to friends. The idea is that people can either accept the challenge—have a bucket of freezing water dumped on them—or donate to an ALS charity. Or they can do both. Most people have been doing both.

Get this: As of August 21, The ALS Association has received $41.8 million in donations compared to $2.1 million during the same time period last year. Only a creative idea sparked attention to a good cause resulting in a 1,890% increase in donations.

ALS is amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, commonly known as the Lou Gehrig disease. It affects nerve cells in the brain and spinal cord, causing lost control of muscle movement. It can lead to paralysis and death.

So what does dumping a bucket of ice on yourself and telling your friends to do the same have to do with ALS? Absolutely nothing.

But it works because it tugs on aspects of our society that are relevant:

  • Social media is huge.
  • Making videos is easy and fun.
  • Americans love a challenge.
  • Americans love making their friends do crazy stuff.
  • Americans love watching videos of people doing crazy stuff.
  • AND, if people are provided with a good enough cause, they are usually sympathetic and generous enough to give to the cause.

The fuel for the idea is the epitome of marketing.

How can your company learn from this phenomenon and use it as a model?

  • Your company needs a lot of creativity, for one.
  • On top of that, have an understanding for how a crazy marketing idea itself can hook an audience—apart from the actual product or service. Play off consumers’ emotions. Come up with an idea that sparks attention because it is whacky or funny or heart-wrenching.
  • Consider involving the audience with an interactive idea. ALS’s current marketing strategy is seeing incredible results because people are so apart of the movement, apart of a cause. This may be the future of marketing as things like hashtags on the internet connect people so readily.
  • Be prepared with tools incase your idea really does flare up sales. The ALS Association has an extremely thorough website ready for all its new visitors. They also have been posting articles almost daily about the ice bucket challenge and the amazing amount of donations. They’ve told the public what hashtags to use in their social sharing of the movement and they even have downloadable profile and cover images for Twitter and Facebook that say, “I completed the challenge.” ALS was so ready for this 1,890% increase in donations, which they likely did not anticipate.
  • Mold your company’s reputation to be solid and admirable. No funny business!
  • Foster trust from your consumers. Value that and work to maintain it.
  • The bottom line in marketing: Give the consumer a reason to believe in and purchase your product or service. Get creative!

Frankly, your product or service might not be a very tantalizing or exciting one, no matter how useful it is. But your marketing strategies can be tantalizing and exciting. Focus on building the customer’s trust in your company, belief in your product or service and the vision of how it might change that person’s life.
Check out my ALS ice bucket challenge here!

The ShoeMoney Show is Back

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It’s back, baby!

ShoeMoney never left but the The ShoeMoney Show has been on hiatus for five years. I’m happy to announce its return on WebmasterRadio.FM!

The show will be bringing you candid and honest chats with some majorly influential folks in the Internet marketing industry. The really cool part is that all of the shows are broadcast LIVE—no pre-recording or editing—just raw, real conversations worth hearing.

The first show is on September 9th at 4p.m., CST. You can listen in on WebmasterRadio.FM or on demand in the WebmasterRadio.FM archives inside the Internet Marketing Channel or through the WebmasterRadio.FM Mobile Application for iOS and Android Smartphone devices.

We have some top-notch guests booked. I’m talking big CEOs. Listen in because these conversations are sure to shed light on things you haven’t considered and teach anyone in the business a thing or two or ten.

Keep checking back for more updates and be sure to join us September 9th!

ShoeMoney FSF Total send email Newsletter platform @TotalSend

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This weeks FSF comes from TotalSend which is an email newsletter platform.  Now some of you are probably thinking “isn’t Jeremy launching a competitor to this?”  And the answer would be
“No,  ours will have 10x the features at a lower price point”.

You can visit TotalSend Here.

totalsend

If you would like to see your company on free shirt friday, please click here for details!

If the ShoeMoney empire died tomorrow… What would I do?

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Recently someone emailed me a question and in response I thought I would share it:

ShoeMoney if your entire business crashed tomorrow what would you do?

Its funny I just went on vacation rented a 32 foot RV with my kids and wife and my kids asked if we could just live in the RV and home school them and just roam around the country.

Kids…

Answering your question is kind of 3 fold.  (probably the most beneficial answer is last).

Worse case -  If I died tomorrow and all income stopped I have put away enough money in trusts and investments that my wife and kids could easily maintain their current lifestyle and have college paid for several times over.  I don’t like having cash or the stock market so I have invested a lot in city backed Real Estate like our local new sports complex and arena.  Shit like that.  Solid return and backed by the city. My investments are not sexy but they are stable.  Plus the 10 milion dollar life insurance policy would make a difference =P.

Realistically - I have built up enough reoccuring revenue from all kinds of various streams over the last decade.  I still get paypal payments monthly… not a ton of money but a couple grand a month from a site I sold in 2010 (no joke).   I got a call the other day from a company that owes me 5k since the wires they sent me didn’t go through since I switched our company to another bank.  There is probably about 15k/month in 50 different streams of revenue and it remains steady without my doing anything new (just auto sequence affiliate programs from my lists).  Also because of my reputation I can get some good consulting gigs for 10-20k/month.  I don’t ever pursue these they often come to me.  Some I take on and some I don’t.  The bigger the company the bigger difference you can make with a little tweak.  For instance we had a 2 billion dollar loan company do a 3 month contract with us for 10k/month and the first month I changed their form page and they saw a 17% increase in converision on the first run… which they said was a difference for them for about 58 MILLION a year in profit.  They locked me into a 2 year deal at 18k/month and I think I have heard from them twice in the last 6 months.  And there is my blog income that does about 500k or so a year.  I don’t write it much anymore and have 90% guest writers that either post for free or 1-2k a month to cover a new post daily.  So if you take all that into account and I do nothing new I am ok.  But that is boring.

Hypothetically - Lets say I get sued by the FTC for god knows what reason and they sieze everything,  all reoccuring revenue, and in the settlement I agree I can’t do anything in online marketing or online anything.  While I feel there is 0% of this happening its out there and the FTC,  while not knowing dick about marketing,  is making examples out of people.

SO what would I do?

Offline arbitrage is HUGE and I started doing it 15 years ago and it still works today.

For example:

I purchased a 2012 Ninja ZR10 off of ebay for like 7500.  The description they guy used for the bike was SHIT.  I rode it for 2 months then it was clear to me this bike was way way way to powerful for me.  So I listed it on eBay and it sold for 8650 just because my copywriting and description was 10x better.  Now this might not be that good of an example cause of the fucking tax/title/license/delivery fees I basically broke even.  My point is though there is ALWAYS going to be a market imbalence.

Here is a FOR SURE way to make money RIGHT NOW without RISKING ANYTHING.

  1. Go on dell deals,  take each of them then goto eBay and see what they are selling for (only check completed listings NOT what people are asking).
  2. I guarentee you will find a big difference in something.
  3. Buy them from Dell and as soon as you get the shipping notice list them on eBay.   Remember you can charge whatever for shipping and sometimes the shipping can be your profit (especially when you get free shipping from dell or amazon.
  4. IF they sell ship them to the buyer.
  5. IF they don’t sell return them to Dell.

Risk free (you might have to pay return shipping).  Amazon covers return shipping though.

But also keep an eye on slickdeals.com or woot.com and look for deals.  You can always return shit.

Amazon is the best place IMO if you can find something cause with a prime account you can do free 2 day shipping OR ship it directly to the person that bought it.

Also don’t forget about your local newspaper.  Your average person doesn’t know about these deals.

Another real life true story.  I bought these sony RF headphones for my TV from amazon for $69 (they are now $79):  http://www.amazon.com/Sony-MDRRF985RK-Wireless-Headphone-Black/dp/B009A6CZYO#

THE EXACT SAME ONES RIGHT NOW are at best buy for $109 and if you go into the store and pay tax its like $115 http://www.bestbuy.com/site/sony-wireless-fm-over-the-ear-headphones/6582193.p?id=1218759758655&skuId=6582193&st=MDRRF985RK&cp=1&lp=1

BUT WAIT

On ebay you can buy them anywhere from $29 to $49:

http://www.ebay.com/itm/Wireless-Sony-Mdrrf985rk-Mdr-Headphones-Studio-Stereo-Over-Ear-Headphone-Black-/281346555526?pt=US_Headphones&hash=item41818fbe86

See what im saying?  ARBITRAGE ARBITRAGE ARBITRAGE.  You could list these locally and make a big profit.

Thats what I did back when I had a fulltime job in early 2000′s then I got more into it and started buying recycled computers.

Big companies like wells fargo or whatever often time upgrade their hardware nation wide and all the old hardware is picked up my a recycle company…  hard drives are destroyed… then they resell the computers often BY THE POUND.  I built up my business where I was ording semi loads once a month and had 2 part time kids helping me take inventory.  I did this on the weekends.  You don’t have to start that big you can just spend $50 and try it.  It does have more risk but huge rewards.  Sometimes on a semi load for 5k I would make as much as 50k…  Sometimes I lost money.

Just keep in mind ARBITRAGE.  It means the PROFIT from a market imbalence.  Its a simple concept many people don’t understand.  It exists all around us.

Sorry for writing so much hope that answers your question.

How Being A Pro At Getting Girls Relates to Internet Marketing

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Years ago I wrote about things internet marketers can learn from the pickup artist.

That was when The Pickup Artist show on VH1 was a big hit and going on. For those who don’t know what it is – it was a reality based TV show where a guy who was great at picking up girls took in bunch of nerdy guys and taught them the art.

Recently, a good friend of mine, had gotten divorced after being married for 10 years and I told him he needed to get a copy of the pickup artist shows and the materials to get his game up to speed.

We purchased *cough* downloaded *cough* the series and went through the first 2 seasons. Its been a long time since I have seen it and I forgot all the basic psychology.

I figured it was easier to quote my original post as it has all the bullet points. Great stuff!

Peacock theory

In episode 2 Mystery teaches the guys that in order to be noticed and remembered you need to stand out. For examples he says that women wear shorter skirts or show more cleavage to separate themselves from the crowd. He goes on to say Men can wear tighter pants or go crazy with their hair. Now if I had not experienced this in real life I would call bullshit but when Dillsmack bet Marcus Tandler 100$ he would not wear his lederhosen out on the town in vegas… we saw exactly the kind of effect this peacocking had on women. They came out of nowhere and were all over Markus asking him where he was from and where he got his outfit. Markus won the bet and got all the attention from the ladies.. win win for him.

So what can internet marketers learn from peacocking? Well several things. For one you need to make your website stand out. For traditional websites this might mean some subtle things like using alternate colors or interesting branding techniques. For people looking to collect email addresses maybe you don’t go with that standard 90 page in 1 page email submit thingie…. for people selling ebooks maybe you smack people in the face with a picture or audio right off the bat to let them know you are real and not like the 10,000 other people selling books to get rich overnight.

Be interesting and people will be interested in you

In episode 3 of the PUA Mystery says nobody will be interested in you if you are not a interesting person. Looks can only get you so far.

I do not think you have to look to far to see parallels here with marketing. You can have the greatest looking site on the planet but if it does not have any meat to it people are going bye bye… A great example of this is plenty of fish Sure it doesnt look like much but it sure is interesting. The site does not need flashy graphics to sell its product (free dating). So the real lesson here imo is focus on your core product and not so much on a great design.

In blogging this is probably easier to draw corelation. John Chow, Problogger, myself and many others all have been making over there blogs. But all of our blogs were successful WAY before we went for a nicer design. Functionality should always be key.

Making your date feel secure and safe

In Episode 4 Mystery brings in some girls for the guys to practice kissing to see who is the best kisser. But the real lesson was not so much on how well you can kiss… Its kind of like what sun tsu says “the war is won or lost before the first battle” so before you go in for a kiss you need to have made the girl feel secure and safe with you. They go through many steps on how this works.

How does this relate to internet marketing? Well you are not going to sell anything unless people feel secure and safe buying from you. There are many little things you can do to make your visitors trust you. One such thing is just by adding a phone number to your site. Another is by adding one of the secure tags like hacker safe or thawt or another one of the many things that have been proven to increase conversion.

Self Confidence

For episode 5 the lesson was in Self Confidence. All the guys were to go swimming with beautiful women in nothing but spedos. Pretty humbling.

The lesson here business owners/internet marketers can take away is the “act as if” mentality. A lot of times when I speak people come up and talk to me and talk about their websites. Many times these people are just getting started and they start off with “well its not much but..” or “I am just a little guy” nothing turns me off more than someone who starts off like that. To me it means they value their business as not very serious and if they do not take it very serious then why should I. On the opposite side you have a company like photrade who approached me about their product at the blogworld expo. I was really impressed and was happy to test their product and help them launch. Other very well known sites wrote about them to citing my post. Now what you don’t know about this company is its run by people who also have day jobs. They have no VC funding and they beg, borrowed, and stole their way to get a booth at blogworld. They acted “as if” and very clearly believed in their product and because they convey such confidence in their product people will take them much more seriously.

Listening and Learning

For episode 6 the guys have to watch a lingerie show from the models Mystery as brought in. During the show the ladies are talking about what lingerie they like the best and why. Course the guys are not really listening because they are distracted by the looks of the models. When Mystery gives them the challenge for the day they are to assemble a lingerie outfit for the models based on what they were communicating when they were modeling. As Mystery says “You should always appreciate beauty but never be distracted by it”.

The Pickup Artist

So what can an internet marketer learn from this? Well since you cant always hear feedback directly from your users you can study their behaviors and patters and really that is how you will listen and learn. Using tools like Google Analytics you can tell what pages users like, how long they stay on the pages, and many many other things your customers are telling you. Also I am a huge fan of heatmap tools like crazy egg which will show you a heatmap of your site and where your users are clicking. This is your customers voice and its vital when you are testing or measuring value.


Approaching moving targets

The challenge for episode 7 for the guys is to approach a girl who is walking by and try to pick her up. Mystery says “objects in motion tend to stay in motion” and talks about how much more difficult it is to pickup a girl who is on the move. Its really quite a interesting episode as the guys fumble around trying to pickup girls walking or running by them.

Your customer (surfing the internet) is moving super fast and is in-motion. You need to approach them and stop them. How do you do it? This is something you need to think about.

 

FSF Ungagged Conference

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This week’s Free Shirt Friday is from the Ungagged conference going on in November. I really like the format of the conference. They are really focusing on the cutting edge gray to black hat area. Most conferences highly discourage this but I think a lot of people will enjoy seeing how the world works. I not only am posting a shirt but also made a small video ;).

IMG_2369

If you want to be a part of free shirt friday, please click here.  

If you haven't got your tickets yet go here before its sold out!

Check out the only WordPress Theme you will ever need (really)

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I bought probably 20 different wordpress themes and frameworks that claim they can do everything they want. You download them and then try to figure out what the hell does what. Usually the documentation sucks. Partly why I use the 2012 wordpress stock theme and modified it to my liking.

Recently for a project I was looking for a theme that had more features and in themeforest (my goto) I can across this theme called X.

This theme takes a really different approach.

Here are some of the key features:

  • STACKS - Instead of just ONE design, X comes with something they call Stacks. Think of them like completely unique designs that can be changed with just the click of a mouse. There are currently four with more on the way.
  • CUSTOMIZER - Remember the days when you would work with an “admin panel”in a WordPress Theme? Not anymore thanks to X. They have instead built upon core WordPress functionality by turning the Customizer into an incredible tool that let’s you LIVE PREVIEW all changes you make while not affecting the visitors on your site. Once you are happy with the configurations, simply hit save and publish and you’re done!
  • BUILT BY EXPERTS - The Themeco folks were smart enough to realize that they weren’t smart enough on their own :) While they have years of experience in Internet Marketing, they decided to go out to some of the brightest names in Internet Marketing to get their feedback on the development of X. Many of these experts shared some of their best tips and techniques that were then built into the theme and training material.

I could go on and on, but the sales and reputation of X and Themeco speak for themselves. Go ahead, Google them. This is not just marketing hype…people actually LOVE this theme so much so that they are being used on sites ranging from .COM – .GOV. That’s right, X is being used by the government, and you can see a live example of how it looks below.

All this sounds great, but you really have to see it for yourself to understand why it is being called the ultimate WordPress theme and quite possibly the last WordPress theme you’ll ever have to buy.

You can see more at their main site - http://theme.co/x/

This will give you a little more info on the features in X as well as the over 30 DEMOS they put together to show you what is possible in X.  The flexibility of this theme is really amazing.

You can see some real world examples here:

INTEGRITY STACK EXAMPLES:

  • http://hs.utah.gov
  • http://symplectic.co.uk
  • http://www.adwordacademy.com

RENEW STACK EXAMPLES:

  • http://coloradocouragerun.com
  • http://8oaks.org
  • http://smmu.com

ICON STACK EXAMPLES:

  • http://www.acouplecooks.com
  • http://the-coveted.com
  • http://james-brandon.com

 

ETHOS STACK EXAMPLES:

  • http://www.alexanderklebe.com
  • http://tesslula.com
  • http://dailytekk.com

Remember, all of these sites were built using the SAME theme.co WordPress Theme. Just incredible! For a full list and overview of all the features in X, you can check out their features section.

Their support team is also quite literally the best in the business. Hands down. With a staff that is all over the globe, the Themeco developers are happy to help with theme related questions in their thriving community and member forums.

Check it out here now and let me know what you think in the comments below.

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How to contact Shawn Hogan in the pen

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Shawn Hogan (Digital Point Founder / Hero to the people) is in federal prison. I wrote about it a couple weeks ago.

Inmate number 13411-111

Evidently he has internet access cause I heard from a friend that just visited that he saw it.

The post I wrote before had a lot of positive response and I know shawn has a lot of fans/friends out there.

Before Shawn went in he registered his inmate number at http://13411-111.com/

And there are instructions to reach him while he is locked up here http://13411-111.com/2014/05/jpay-at-taft/

Avoid the death of your email

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You don’t want your email message to be sent to die in the junk, bulk or spam folders. Here are some things to keep in mind in order to get your message across the right way:

Use an email server platform with a good reputation. ISPs (like Yahoo! Mail or Hotmail) look at these mail servers when deciding whether to accept or reject a message.

Produce good content. If you’re sending an email out, it shouldn’t be junk or spam. ISPs use content filters that determine what folder the email will go to. Make your message have a message!

Test your email message on a content analyzer service, like SpamAssassin. Your score should be below 5 so that the message is not filtered into spam.

Use confirmed opt-in. This is a safe, smart step. Your messages will be sent to actual addresses that likely won’t unsubscribe because they already subscribed. And – less spam complaints for you.

Be careful with punctuation and diction. In the message and especially in the subject line, don’t use too much punctuation and avoid CAPITALIZED WORDS. IT IS ALARMING AND LOOKS LIKE SPAM, DON’T YOU THINK?

Use a unique From/Reply email address. Spammers often use email addresses hosted by Yahoo! Mail or Gmail.

Include both HTML and plain-text versions of your message.

Less imagery, more text. Spammers often use mostly photos instead of text to bypass filters. Photos are not bad, compensate them with more text.

Push for subscribers to add you to their address book.  If they do, ISPs will usually send your future messages straight to the subscriber’s inbox.

Our PAR Program platform does this all for you. It automatically checks to see if your message is being delivered to the inbox or if it is dying in the SPAM box! Our client relations team also works with clients, one on one, whose emails are being delivered as SPAM to find the cause and resolve it.

If you are experiencing a problem like this and need some professional help and guidance please connect the PAR Program today!

 

Get your biz on ShoeMoney FSF

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Long story short.  I got 2 shirts right now in queue for Free Shirt Friday.  So send me a shirt and get huge exposure for your brand/company and usually hundreds to thousands of clicks depending if people want to know more about your company.

Its as easy as just shipping a shirt to the address here.

Longer story:

For almost 10 years every Friday I post a free shirt Friday.  I can’t recall off the top of my head ever missing one.  At one time years ago we had a queue of 50 or more which means it would be about a year.

I started Free Shirt Friday with shirts I got for free at conferences.  I was so amazed at all the free stuff given away at events.

As the blog started to get traction companies started to send me shirts.  But not just shirts.  I have gotten everything from a custom poker table to halloween costumes to samples of products.   Whatever you send I will post with the shirt.

Its a fun thing that I do and something I want to continue.

So get on it.  Send me a shirt!

How PAR Program Client Muscle Fire increases revenue by 33%

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This month we put out a press release featuring one of PAR Program clients.  I think this is the 4th or 5th one we have put out now.

musclefirelogo_640

Musclefire – A local clothing and supplement company came onboard as a client to the PAR Program.  We started rocking it for them from day one.   After the CEO, Jarrod Parde, kept talking about what a difference the PAR Program has made in his company I hit him up for a couple quotes we could use.

What would you say to companies looking into email marketing?

“Don’t waste time researching any other email marketing or customer acquisition companies,” Parde said. “Just integrate PAR into your business and you’ll definitely see an increase in all facets of your business.”

What are your favorite features of the PAR Program?

“Segmented and targeted email campaigns have been amazing,” Parde said. “You can literally focus down to the smallest demographic and laser target your prospects. Awesome stuff.  Also having our own dedicated account manager has been awesome.  Having you guys completely take this off our plate was the perfect solution for us.”

What kind of an impact, over all, has the PAR Program made on Musclefire?

“The short answer is that we have increased revenue by 33%.  With a decent chunk of it coming from returning buyers.  This is one of PAR Program’s best features.  You can actually tell exactly what revenue is coming from PAR.”

If you would like to see if your company qualifies for the PAR Program give us a shout over here.