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Archive | November 28, 2015

The Proof of the Pudding is in the e-Mail

E-mails can be very intriguing. The first e-mail can make you extremely curious to know more, especially if it says briefly and succinctly something really tantalizing yet mysterious, such as an offer to ‘make you several thousand dollars in only two months’.

email money

No doubt you will receive quite a few of these communications each and every week and you will either pursue this by responding to ask for more information directly or clicking a link to get more details – or you will say ‘no thanks, this isn’t something I would be interested in’.

On the one hand people may like emails that are long and give as many details (and selling points) as possible, but then on the other hand, when it is short and sweet it may prompt a reply just out of curiosity if nothing else. The next message you receive may invite you to a webinar or phone call, etc. that will explain more and further entice you.

One good question you should ask the sender in your initial reply, is ‘Have you made this money yourself?’ Which brings us onto the point of ‘where is the proof’? Although there are some amazing ideas, it is important to find out if it is just a theory or ‘pipe dream’ or if it is actually a reality. It really should be a rule that you make ideas work for you and then if they do work, you can then recommend them to others.

However, by extension if you are an affiliate and can’t honestly say you have already seen this idea in action/received the money, then you can still propose the idea to others if you are quoting and using documentation of the program’s owner’s proof of success. You should make the distinction clear if asked and if you are inexperienced or do not have a reputation yet, always use the documentation that is usually provided to you by the program.

Proof is an incredibly powerful marketing tool that simply must be included in order to succeed. Proof can be provided for example, by an honest testimonial or review. In the same sense presenting a problem and then offering a solution along with proof it works, is an excellent way to structure your e-mail marketing and advertising.

In that same vein, showing statistics from any studies or surveys that have been done and of course saying who/what/where it was done, is another powerful way to create trust in what you are claiming.

Yet another example would be to pose a series of questions and answers. Maybe you have made notes on the various reasons people believe they can’t do something – lack of experience, lack of time, money, etc. In this method you again show a solution or negate their concerns where people have fears that are preventing them from moving forward.

SFI now in it’s 18th Year


SFI’s Official News Blog

SFI now in its 18th year!

We are now officially in our 18th year!  From but a small acorn 18 years ago, SFI has grown into a tall and mighty oak tree, with strong and deep roots.  But you ain’t seen nothin’ yet…because we planted an entire FOREST…and it’s spreading across every country in the world.

SFI President & Founder Gery Carson remembers the day SFI was born:

Gery2009_125w“As an entrepreneur, there have been very few holidays where I haven’t worked at least a few hours, and this day in 1998 was no different.  I went into my home office that morning planning to spend a few casual hours–on nothing in particular.  It was a holiday after all and no one else on my staff at the time was working. So it was just going to be a relaxing day where I’d let my mind have a break from the typical daily grind.

I remember at the time that affiliate programs were becoming a big deal, thanks to the Internet, which made it very easy to track sales using affiliate links.  Numerous big-name companies were now employing affiliate programs as a part of their marketing strategy.  And I thought…why not us, too!

I remember being particularly impressed with’s affiliate program.  The word was, they had 60,000 affiliates.  60,000!  At the time, that number seemed enormous to me, an impossible number.  But I couldn’t have been more wrong of course because, in just a couple years, we would be experiencing days where we’d sign up over 60,000 affiliates in a single day!

But on this morning, I was simply sketching out a few basics on how our affiliate program would work.  At the time, we were publishing our magazine, Six Figure Income, which featured exclusive interviews with home-based entrepreneurs who were earning at least $100,000 annually from their business.  This magazine was essentially our one and only product.  By the way, it’s from the magazine’s name that the SFI Marketing Group name came to be (a few years later we changed the initials to stand for Strong Future International to better align with our vision for the program).


Six Figure Income magazine’s premier issue was the March/April 1998 issue.  Prior to this, and stretching all the way back to 1986, we had published other newsletters and magazines devoted primarily to mail order entrepreneurs, including Mail Dealer Newsletter, Mail Profits Magazine, and Profits Magazine.  During those years, marketing by mail was the “Internet” for many entrepreneurs.  All the marketing we do today on the Web; in those years, at least for entrepreneurs like myself, it was all mail based (with a little bit of help from phone, fax, and conference calls).

Six Figure Income magazine was published just four times per year, and a one-year subscription was $49, so we had a healthy margin…enough margin to pay a handsome commission to anyone who wished to be an affiliate of ours and sell subscriptions.

Within days of deciding to create our affiliate program, I had published information on how to sign up online (supplemented, if I recall correctly, with a small direct mail campaign ironically).  To my pleasant surprise, sign-ups starting coming in almost immediately.  Not a lot, maybe a dozen or two a week, but that number rapidly accelerated.  Soon it was hundreds of sign-ups a day, then thousands, then tens of thousands!

Sashen_Strayer_WallenDriving this, now, hyper-growth was our decision to expand the program and compensation plan–many of the details of which were hammered out during a weekend at SFI affiliate Steven Sashen’s Boulder, Colorado, home with affiliates Gump Wallen and the late, great Richard Strayer (we miss you, Rich!).  By January 2001, we had exceeded one MILLION affiliates.  With our most recently assigned ID number 16483269, over 15 million others have joined SFI since.

So like many great accomplishments, it all started with a simple idea, a simple inspiration.  Today, SFI is the online home for millions of entrepreneurs from every country in the world.  Indeed, SFI today is very possibly the largest and most successful affiliate program in the world.  Aim high.  Dream big.”

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