Ask Janet: When To Sell Recordings of a Tele-Summit

This is quite a long question from Cate Richards but I have included all of it as it has some great learning for you. In short, the question I answer here is:

In your List Building Telesummit [Does List Size Really Matter], why did you post all the interviews to one landing page from the outset?  In the the model that I see they generally post one per day, leave them 24 – 48 hours and then take them down to drive sales of the recordings.  I think that scarcity probably creates a behaviour that you want (ie people to listen when they are free).  No need to answer, just wanted you to know I noticed that (all good, from my perspective, and I hope that worked for you).


The Longer Question

Hi Janet,

I wanted to write and congratulate you for the list building interview telesummit, you did a fabulous job.  I have listened to probably 30 of these series, but you are the first Aussie I’ve come across doing this and it was great to hear the Australian voices …especially Pete Godfrey, I wondered what the Americans made of him!

Particular strengths were:

  • I loved the 20 minutes, especially the simple question “who do you work with”, you managed to cut out about 15 minutes of usual filler right there .
  • You have a lovely natural interviewing style, all the interviews flowed really well, I guess this is preparation and practice!
  • Unlike most teleseminars you had a real variety of entrepreneurs there.  Whilst I listen to lots of different people, from the hard core internet marketers through to the other end of the spectrum such as the “goddesses”, most teleseminars tend to be real like minded fests where you hear the same thing over and over, so this was great.  People do have so much in common but there is always a lot to be learned from other styles of marketing.
  • The brief ending “how can I get more / what is your free gift” was really good. Being just back from Lisa Sasevich’s sales training I noted not all of them seeded much, except Kendall who is a master at those things!  (Listen and learn ladies)
  • I loved Carrie Wilkerson, who I have heard before, but I think you really got a lot out of her.  Especially as she essentially talked about a different model to most of the other entrepreneurs who have built ascension models off a coaching or service base, whereas she saw a gap, built a following, sold affiliate and then moved into product creation.   (Very smart!)  She also gave me a kick up the bum as a I also run a hugely successful offline business and am absolutely struggling to get any work done on my dream business – without 4 kids as an excuse.  Just need to make it work!

Other comments (sent in a spirit of love)

  • Despite being Australia’s telesummit veteran, it wasn’t actually crystal clear that yours was free training, especially on your video landing page.  I had to look twice because I thought I had to pay.-
  • More a question, why did you post all the interviews to one landing page from the outset?  In the the model that I see they generally post one per day, leave them 24 – 48 hours and then take them down to drive sales of the recordings.  I think that scarcity probably creates a behaviour that you want (ie people to listen when they are free).  No need to answer, just wanted you to know I noticed that (all good, from my perspective, and I hope that worked for you).

Janet’s Answer

This is a brilliant question and I love how Cate is not just learning from the speakers in the summit, but also studying and analysing HOW the tele-summit was structured. The process Cate has mentioned (making the live recordings available only for a short time and then selling the bundled recordings as a product, usually at a discount for fast movers) is an excellent model. That is, if your intention is to do a once-off launch, do all the promotion as an intensive campaign and then monetize the recordings. In fact, this is something I teach my students of my Passion to Profits program.

My intentions for the Does List Size Really Matter project were different, so my methods were different.

Know Your Intentions

A friend of mine, Gold Medal swimming champion Shelley Taylor-Smith has a great phrase: “You need an intention before giving it your attention” and she is spot on (no wonder she can stay focused to swim such ridiculously long distances). You see your intention will determine how you structure any project you introduce in your business.

Usually, I find your intentions for a marketing strategy  fall into the following categories:

  • List Building
  • Cashflow
  • Market Positioning (Branding)
  • Customer Retention

The other qualifier will be:

  • Is this a once off campaign? or
  • Is this an ‘evergreen’ campaign?

Evergreen List Building

My intention for this project was List Building. So what better way than to interview experts on list building and ask them to promote the tele-series to their lists as part of our Joint Venture? The list building is not one-sided. This project was designed to be a list-builder for every person involved.

If I was concentrating on cash-flow, I would have asked the speakers to make a special offer just for my listeners, for a product they sell. This would allow the speakers to make sales and me to make money from commissions.

Because the total intention of this project was list building, I told the speakers there would be no opportunity to sell. Instead they were asked to provide a special gift for all listeners which would require an opt-in on their website. This meant the speakers could grow their list and many of them created gifts especially for this project.

I organised this project with a short lead time which meant that many of the speakers could easily arrange to be interviewed (20 minutes was easy to find time for) but they could not commit to promote until later than the date I set to launch (NOTE: when you are dealing with successful marketers you usually need to give them a lead time of a few months (sometimes more than 6) because their promotional calendars are booked out). For this reason I decided to make the program “evergreen” so the pressure was off them for when they should promote. It also meant I could have a permanent lead generation funnel set up that I know will continue to entice people onto my list because the topic is so important.

This series will remain free until I decide I will get better traction from making it into a product instead as a list builder.

List Building Versus Cash Flow

An important note is just because you may choose to do a project for list building does not mean you cannot make money. There is always a way to  make money. In this case, I created a product especially on this topic and upsold to it when people joined the list and also in the follow up emails.

I didn’t need to save the interview recordings to sell as a product because I already have a huge amount of resources I have created to compile a more powerful product. If I didn’t already have product to sell it would have been a different story. I will also make money down the track when the speakers make sales to the people who joined their lists during this campaign. This is because the links to their gifts are tracked to reward me as an affiliate.

What is Your Intention?

Before you plan your next marketing campaign, really think about what your main intention is. Sure, you can achieve more than one intention with a campaign but there will always be one over-riding intention. Be very, very clear on this. Throughout the planning stage ask yourself “how does this decision I am making on this project match with my intention?”

I’d love to hear what your focus is on at the moment in your business. Is your priority  list building or for getting cash in as fast as possible? Maybe your focus is on branding and establishing yourself as a thought leader? Maybe on increasing trust with an existing list? I’d love you to share so make sure you leave your comments and questions below.




  1. Hi Janet,

    Firstly thanks so much for taking the time to answer my question in such detail it is much appreciated.

    You noticed I am a little obsessed with models, I think if you can learn how to apply these structures it can give you a lot of freedom to create.

    I think you are right to use a “strategy first” approach, with so many different ways to market and sell our wares, it is so smart to ask that essential question first; what are we trying to achieve?

    Setting up these evergreen promotions to build your funnel is genius and I absolutely think you nailed it on this one. Well done.

    Thanks again, I hope others are learning as much as I am from you!


  2. Hey Cate it was a great question and thanks so much for sending it through. I am also obsessed with models and for a very good reason. It is these models that give you the lifestyle freedom through your business. The problem people have is following a business model that has worked well for one of their mentors without really analysing if it is the right model for their personality, lifestyle goals, family situation and niche. If it doesn’t work for them they can feel that either they are a failure or their mentor betrayed them when neither is true. If you get very clear on your intentions for your lifestyle and your current core objectives in your business, then you can assess each model against what is right for you….at this stage in your business.

    I will be launching another telesummit in January on a very different topic but my objectives are very different for that one (product creation on a topic I don’t have a speciality in but know my clients need) so the way I run that will be very different to the way I have run this one. You’ll just have to wait and see 🙂

  3. OMG janet you are a brilliant! That was a fabulous in depth response. Just shows how fabulous you are at knowing what you want to get out of every action you take in your business (instead of just thinking, ‘that’s a good idea’ or ‘sounds like something nice to do’).

    You are officially Uber Cool


    • Hey Zoe thanks for your enthusiasm. Love the idea of being “Uber Cool” 🙂 Yep stopping and asking yourself the question”What is my intention” is a fantastic reality check to apply to everything in business.

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