Last weekend I traveled to Austin to meet up with my business partner John Sonmez and 250 other entrepreneurs for the first-ever “SumoCon.”
The conference was hosted by the team from AppSumo, and I have to say I was impressed by the caliber of the people I met. (The annual revenue of the businesses at this conference averaged $917,000. Not a lot of “wantrepreneurs” hanging around.)
In the last session of the conference, the “King Sumo” himself, Noah Kegan, threw down the gauntlet:
He challenged us to earn back the price of the conference right there, on the spot, by selling *something* to our existing customers.
He set a timer for 15 minutes—go!
John and I put our heads together and started strategizing furiously. One minute went by, then two.
We had our plan: We have this product that we’re planning to launch soon—a $500 video course that isn’t even done yet.
(This product is so new I haven’t even had time to write a real sales page yet. All we had to work with was a web page with a paragraph of text, the $500 sticker price and a Buy Now button.)
So we decided to open the product up for a group of 10 “beta testers” at a steep discount.
Neither of us had a laptop, so we both whip our our iPhones.
John created the discount code in our shopping cart app.
I logged into our email software to create a segment of our existing customers.
While I’m doing that, John starts pecking out a quick pitch email.
Thumbs are flying.
I finish setting up the email blast, then write the second half of the email that John started.
We hit send as Noah calls “time.”
Here’s what we sent:
Subject: Typing this on my iPhone
Hey what’s up. Typing this on my iPhone.
I’m at SumoCon and Noah Kagan, is challenging us to find a way to make money in 15 minutes.
And let me tell you, Noah is looking pretty scary right now. He started lifting weights and he shaved his head.
By the way, do you know who Noah is? He was employee 30 at Facebook and then he got fired.
The point of this exercise is to get us to take action.
And so I want to reward a few action takers right now.
I am beta testing a new course about real estate investing.
As a customer of Simple Programmer, I’d like to offer you the chance to participate at half price.
Use discount code [code] to save 50 percent right now (limit 10):
Not a lot of copywriting persuasion jujitsu going on there.
Just a straightforward offer to a group of people who have already gotten to know and trust us enough to spend their hard-earned money with us in the past.
The entire “campaign” took less than 15 minutes to execute.
So what happened?
Well, for about 5 minutes, nothing much.
Then a sale came in. Sweet! We’d earned $250 with the world’s most slap-dash email copy ever.
8 minutes later, another sale hit. Then another, and another…
And in less than four hours, we’d sold all 10 of our “beta test” slots, earning a total of $2,500 for 15 minutes of work.
That’s $10,000 an hour.
Now—it’s not *really* $10,000 an hour. A lot of work went into creating this customer list and putting the product together.
That’s not the point though.
Here’s what is:
Far and away the EASIEST way to earn more money is by selling MORE to your existing customers.
Even if you’re doing an above average job of this like we are, there are ALWAYS more opportunities.
And it doesn’t even have to take weeks of work—sometimes a quick email will get the job done.
So now it’s your turn:
How could YOU earn at least $500 from your existing customers *right now*?