Praise for Launch. Hands on and generous, Michael shows you precisely how he does it, step by step. Seth Godin, author of Linchpin

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3 Praise for Launch Launch is your road map to success in an ever-changing world. Stelzner shows you how to enchant your customers so that they ll want to help you change the world. Guy Kawasaki, author of Enchantment Hands on and generous, Michael shows you precisely how he does it, step by step. Seth Godin, author of Linchpin If your business is flying high by making cold calls to sales prospects and by spending boatloads of money on ads, then you don t need the rocket fuel contained in this book. But if you re looking for a better way to reach the business heights you ve only dreamed of, start reading Launch. Stelzner is a rocket scientist. David Meerman Scott, author of Real-Time Marketing & PR What Stelzner shares here is proven! He s already built a community that propelled his brand not only beyond the competition but ahead of an entire industry. The stories he shares will help us do one of two things: excel or succeed. Brian Solis, author of Engage! This isn t a book about marketing; it s about human nature. Understand that and you ve unlocked the key to your success. Each chapter has a solid set of strategic and tactical recommendations for anyone in marketing. And the common theme throughout: people. Scott Monty, head of social media at Ford Motor Company

4 I only believe what I ve read in Launch because I ve watched Michael Stelzner do it himself. It works. Chris Brogan, president, HumanBusinessWorks.com and co-author of Trust Agents Mike lays out in a very easy-to-grok way how to power your business s growth in a meaningful, measurable, sustainable way. Theory is fine, really. But what s even better is how-to action. And that s precisely what you ll find here. Ann Handley, Chief Content Officer, MarketingProfs and co-author of Content Rules Our company motto is Always Be Launching, and it s served us well. Now, Mike Stelzner takes you behind the scenes of this powerful and effective online marketing strategy. Brian Clark, CEO, Copyblogger Media I love books written by someone who has truly walked the path, and who shares the practical how-to steps for replicating his success, leaving nothing out. Mike Stelzner has done exactly that with Launch. He draws from his deep well of experience, spanning a decade launching two very successful businesses and quickly becoming a leading authority in both. Mike s teachings absolutely work! This book is a must-read for anyone serious about building a sustainable empire on a solid foundation in today s fast-moving, new media world. Mari Smith, co-author of Facebook Marketing: An Hour A Day The key paradox of modern marketing is that the more you sell the less you sell. In Launch, Mike Stelzner has provided the perfect blueprint for this approach, demonstrating how to grow your business by being useful and solving problems. Mike s elevation principle alone is worth the purchase price. Buy this book and fuel your own meteoric rise. Jay Baer, co-author of The NOW Revolution

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7 MICHAEL A. STELZNER John Wiley & Sons, Inc.

8 Copyright # 2011 by Michael Stelzner. All rights reserved. Published by John Wiley & Sons, Inc., Hoboken, New Jersey. Published simultaneously in Canada. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording, scanning, or otherwise, except as permitted under Section 107 or 108 of the 1976 United States Copyright Act, without either the prior written permission of the Publisher, or authorization through payment of the appropriate per-copy fee to the Copyright Clearance Center, Inc., 222 Rosewood Drive, Danvers, MA 01923, (978) , fax (978) , or on the web at Requests to the Publisher for permission should be addressed to the Permissions Department, John Wiley & Sons, Inc., 111 River Street, Hoboken, NJ 07030, (201) , fax (201) , or online at Limit of Liability/Disclaimer of Warranty: While the publisher and author have used their best efforts in preparing this book, they make no representations or warranties with respect to the accuracy or completeness of the contents of this book and specifically disclaim any implied warranties of merchantability or fitness for a particular purpose. No warranty may be created or extended by sales representatives or written sales materials. The advice and strategies contained herein may not be suitable for your situation. You should consult with a professional where appropriate. Neither the publisher nor author shall be liable for any loss of profit or any other commercial damages, including but not limited to special, incidental, consequential, or other damages. For general information on our other products and services or for technical support, please contact our Customer Care Department within the United States at (800) , outside the United States at (317) or fax (317) Wiley also publishes its books in a variety of electronic formats. Some content that appears in print may not be available in electronic books. For more information about Wiley products, visit our Web site at Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data: Stelzner, Michael A. Launch: how to quickly propel your business beyond the competition/michael Stelzner. p. cm. Includes index. ISBN (cloth) ISBN (ebk) ISBN (ebk) ISBN (ebk) 1. Marketing. 2. Marketing Management. 3. Customer relations Management. 4. Business networks Management. 5. Industrial promotion. I. Title. HF5415.S dc Printed in the United States of America

9 For the person who s been told, It can t be done, this is for you.

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11 Contents Preface Acknowledgments xiii xv Chapter 1 Rockets Don t Fly Themselves 1 The Problem with Marketing 2 The Internet as the Great Paralyzer 4 Meet the Enemy: Channel Overload Syndrome 5 Do People Really Trust Your Business? 6 Introducing the Elevation Principle 7 Elements of the Elevation Principle 13 Why the Formula Works 24 Chapter 2 Starting Your Mission Plan 27 Establishing Your Clear Vision 28 Crafting Measurable Goals 32 Setting Your Course Trajectory 34 Chapter 3 Finding Inspiration by Looking Outward 43 Identifying Role Models 44 Leveraging Inspirational Content 47 Setting Up an Idea Vault 49 Creating a Discovery System 51 Why the Outward Focus? 55 Chapter 4 Leveraging the Power of Other People 57 The Power of Other People 58 Who Do You Want to Reach? 59 Developing Profiles for Your Ideal Reader Base 61 How to Identify the Problems and Desires of Your Reader Base 65 What Problems Are They Facing? 65 ix

12 x Contents Working with Outside Experts 69 Leveraging Fire Starters 77 Why Focus on Other People? 80 Chapter 5 Actively Engaging Other People 83 Reciprocity Marketing 84 The Importance of Giving Genuine Gifts 87 Using Social Proof 93 Moving People to Action 100 Why Engage? 104 Chapter 6 Making Content the Fuel of Your Marketing 107 Proof That Content Works 107 What Makes for Great Content? 113 Creating an Editorial Guide 119 Mapping an Editorial Calendar 121 Why Content? 124 Chapter 7 Creating and Using Primary Fuel 127 What Is Primary Fuel? 128 Comprehensive How-to Articles 134 Expert Interviews 138 Reviews 143 Case Studies 147 News Stories 150 Contrarian Stories 153 Chapter 8 Creating and Using Nuclear Fuel 155 What Is Nuclear Fuel? 156 Reports Based on Surveys 161 White Papers 166 Top 10 Contests 172 Micro Events 178 Chapter 9 How to Employ Marketing 185 What Does Caging Marketing Messages Mean? 186 How to Employ Marketing Messages 187 The Last Word: The Elevation Principle Revisited 205

13 Contents xi Appendices Primary Fuel Content Samples 207 Appendix A: Comprehensive How-to Article 208 Appendix B: Expert Interview 213 Appendix C: Review 219 Appendix D: Case Study 223 Appendix E: Contrarian Story 229 Glossary 235 About the Author 237 Discover More About the Elevation Principle 239 Index 241

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15 Preface If you ve ever been discouraged by the undelivered promises of marketing, this book is for you. You and I share something in common: We ve hoped that our marketing efforts would bring us big results. We ve tried and failed. We ve dusted ourselves off and kept on trying each time learning from our failures. I wrote Launch for you. I ve failed so many times I stopped counting. But along the way, I kept at it relentlessly. Then, finally, things clicked. My hope is that this book reveals a new way of marketing to you. It s one that involves focusing on the needs of others, giving gifts, working with outsiders, and caging your marketing messages. These principles are precisely the opposite of traditional marketing. Yet they work. And they are the future. Let me give you a little preview of what s in store for your business. I d like you to think of your business as a rocket ship. Your goal is to navigate this powerful machine to new frontiers. Your fuel is great content. People consume your fuel, moving your rocket higher and faster. Your marketing messages have been packed in long-term storage. As you travel to new galaxies, a huge community of your peers, prospects, and customers supports you. You ve become unstoppable. In older and smaller rocket ships are your competitors. They re stuck at the edge of the atmosphere. Gravity is not only working against them, many have crashed and are wondering what happened. The world is changing. Now it s time for your business to change as well. In this book you ll discover how to bring the masses to your business and become a hub for your marketplace all without the need to constantly pitch your services or wares. The odds are no longer against you. Now you have a proven plan. This book isn t like other marketing books. Rather than making keen observations about others who ve achieved success, the ideas xiii

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