Wednesday, February 21, 2018

Find Topics By Doing This James Bond Technique

March 5, 2013 by  
Filed under All Posts, Market Research, Research

Find topics by being like James Bond? In other words, by being a spy. It’s simple, just eavesdrop on your prospects and your competition.

Why? Along with discovering what is trendingdoing your keyword research, and knowing what are the top selling categories, it’s another key way to gather intelligence so that you choose a topic that has a high chance of success.

You want to gather information on:

Your topic

For starters, you can see how many views certain posts get, and which posts spark a lively conversation. What are people asking about on this topic? What are they complaining about? By doing a little research, and listening to what people are looking for, it can help you get clear on the solution your product will deliver.

Your competition

You also want to know what your competition is delivering and also how they are marketing. Ask people about other products they’ve purchased and what they liked about them. Don’t be afraid to follow or friend your competition. They’re probably doing it to you. Your intent isn’t to find something that you’ll copy, but a starting point on what you can deliver differently.

You also want to know if there even is a market for this information. If you have no competition, that may mean there really isn’t much of a market. The longer your competitors have been in business, the better. That’s a sign that the market is stable.

Your prospects and customers

You also want to find out who your prospects and customers are in order to communicate with them in the future. You want to know where they “hang out”, shop, play, etc.

So where do you eavesdrop? Here are 2 places I use:

1) Forums

Forums can reveal quite a bit of information on the particular topic at hand. And these days, you can find forums on every topic under the sun! Do a Google search for an online forum to see if people are talking about your potential topic. Just “lurk” at first to see what people are talking about.

2) Social media sites

Follow and friend your competition and track what they say and do. In Twitter, you can put them in a private list. Same with Facebook and Google+ circles. Subscribe to YouTube channels.

These are just 2 of the tools and strategies you can use to find topics, customers and competing products. However, just eavesdropping isn’t enough, what you do next will make a huge difference in your bottom line. We’ll talk about that in our next post.

Related Posts:

What Is Trending? Look Here First To See What Videos People Are Buying

Use This In Your Research And Find Your Next Best Seller

Want a Best Seller? Pick a Topic in One Of These Categories

How To Choose a Topic For Your Next Special Interest Video

Forum Marketing Secrets: 5 Reasons You Need To Join Forums

Feedback – How You Get Vital Information For Growing Your Product Line

December 11, 2012 by  
Filed under All Posts, Market Research, Marketing, Research

You know that you want to expand your product line but before you do so, there’s one essential step you need to do…

Listen to your market first. You need to get feedback about what they like and don’t like about your products. Use this information to be planning ahead to make more videos along this same topic.

How do you get feedback? Here are some ideas:

From Your Customers

Start by talking to your existing customers. Talk to them face to face or on the phone. Also send a follow up email with a short survey after each purchase. If they haven’t told you what they thought, you need to ask them! It doesn’t have to be really formal, just a few quick questions will help. There are some good online survey tools, such as SurveyMonkey or Zoomerang that you can use.

What exactly should you ask? Besides what they thought of the video they purchased, how it met their needs, were they satisfied, etc., you also want to find out what more they want. You’re looking for new ideas, common interests and problems. has some good tips for writing a customer survey that will get you a great response rate.

Getting people to complete a survey can be tough. One good trick to entice them is to offer a gift. Also you need to be upfront with them as to why you are asking these questions and tell them you need their help so that you can meet their needs better. Let them know that it is with THEIR best interests in mind that you are asking their feedback and advice.

Don’t focus on what you’d like to sell them. Listen carefully to what they say and, from there, identify those product ideas that best match their requirements.

From Your Prospects

Which of your customers bring in the most business? What are their characteristics and interests? It is very likely that other people like them could also benefit from your product/service. Those people are your prospects.

If you have a mailing list of these prospects, by all means use the online tools I mentioned to send surveys to them.

Also thanks to social media, you can take your knowledge of your customers and find out where similar people to them are hanging out and what they think and want. You can do this by asking questions on forums, on Facebook, Twitter and other social media platforms. You can also post surveys on Facebook. With an online polling creator such as the one by SurveyMonkey, you can create an online poll by using an online polling creator and post a quick question to anyone you want — website visitors, blog readers, Facebook fans, Twitter followers or anyone else on the web.

Note: While it is really important to listen to what people say, don’t go 100% by their answers. Some people will tell you what they think you want to hear but would not actually be buyers. You will still need to do more research in other areas before you invest a lot of time and money into another video product.

Recommended Reading:

Shoot To Sell: Make Money Producing Special Interest Videos – Chapters 3 and 4 are dedicated to choosing and researching a topic  to increase your chances for success.

Key To Success? Expand Your Product Offerings

8 Ways To Make Money Producing Your Own Videos

Where Can You Find Your Competitors And Why Do You Want To?

There are a lot of things to think through before you start shooting your video. Obviously, you want a topic that will be marketable and successful. Don’t just follow your intuition and say “I know this will be a big hit.” Trust me, I’ve done that more than once and it doesn’t work. You need enthusiasm, yes, but you also need sound business sense.

Previously we talked about the importance of identifying your target market. You also need to research to see if there is a need for the information you want to share and ask yourself, “Is video the best way to provide it?”

Then you need to find your competitors. You have to look for all types of established competing products that are already available – books, online course, eBooks, audio programs. You want to know where to find the information that is on your topic and not just who is buying it but who also is delivering it. Why?

Competition can tell you if there is a viable market already established. If you find people who are already successfully selling videos on your subject that proves that demand exists for this topic or they wouldn’t be in business. The longer they’ve been doing it, the better the indication that this is a good niche or else there wouldn’t be a consistent demand.

Getting to know your competitors’ products is also important in determining your approach and the intent of your video. When we were writing our book proposal for what became Shoot To Sell: Make Money Producing Special Interest Videos to Focal Press, there was a section we had to complete that really brought this home to us. We had to go out and find all of the other books that were on the same subject along with the publishing information, i.e., date published, publisher, brief synopsis, etc. That was one of the most time consuming tasks we had to complete and I told the editor that. She apologized but I quickly jumped in to let her know that I appreciated doing the exercise because I came away with a really good sense of what other books were available but most importantly, how we can deliver something unique with our book.

Through hours of research, we discovered that there were hundreds of books on marketing, dozens on general video production, a few on getting your film into the hands of distributors but only one (unless you also count the one on how to shoot a sex video with your spouse) that dealt with all of these topics in a single book. The book we found was a few years old and didn’t address the new business strategies that have cropped up in delivering video on demand and internet and social media marketing. We also found a few videos that were much more targeted to making how-to videos rather than setting up a business in video publishing. So we knew what wasn’t available and how to deliver it and can truthfully say that this is the only book of it’s kind that is selling today.

The other exciting outcome of doing all that research is that we got much better at it and found some great places to go looking that we shared in our book.

Where can you find your competitors?

Well, you can use the internet and do an extensive search. Use Google but don’t stop there. Use other search engines like Bing, Yahoo and Ask. You’ll also want to search beyond the first results page of Google. is also an incredible resource and don’t forget (Barnes and Noble online), YouTube and sites such as Netflix.

Before you begin to do your search, come up with a string of keywords you feel people would most likely be searching on that deals with your topic. As you research, make sure you take copious notes and when you discover a competing product, make sure you write down all the background information you can find. For example, you want to know the publication date. If you find the only competing video on the subject is 20 years old, there may have been a lot of changes that you can add to a newer video program. Also maybe the publisher could be a potential client or distributor. Read the reviews on similar products to see what people are saying. Look at competing books Table of Contents to see what they cover.

Off the internet, a visit to your local public library’s periodical section or your local bookstore’s magazine rack is also a good place to find information. Peruse the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, and other large newspapers. Look at the ads at the back of publications that deal with your subject. What type of information products are listed there?

Once you have all of that information, now your task is to find your own unique place in that niche and market. What can you deliver differently? What will be your unique selling proposition (USP)?

Your USP will be the answer to another question your customers will be thinking, if not outright asking, “Why would I buy this video and why would I buy it from you?” In other words, what is it about your video that is unique, will solve my problem and why are you the person to deliver that to me?

One thing to keep in mind if you don’t find any competition, that may not always be a good sign. Others may have tried to produce something along the same lines but found no market. So before you get too much further along with your video production, you want to make sure you’ll have a viable market to sell to.

So you see competition isn’t just a bad thing to be avoided at all cost. In fact, being ignorant of who and what you’re competing against will go against you. It is necessary to educate yourself so that you know not just what is available, you’ll want to know if anyone is making any money off of it and how you can deliver something that others will buy.

Recommended Posts:

Identify Your Target Market Before You Do This!

8 Ways To Make Money Producing Your Own Videos

Google Keyword Suggestion Tool: Why and How To Use This Free Search Tool

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