165. The Only Way Low Dollar Offers Are Working Today
18 July 2022 | By Salome Schillack
Today I'm getting a thorn out of my side…pesky little Low Dollar Offers.
When your main offer isn't flying out the door, it's completely normal to think…
"What if I sell all that value for just $27? It’ll be the deal of the century! I'll hit 1000 sales in no time and CHA CHING baby, I'm a 5-figure launcher”…..
Super easy, right?
Low Dollar Offers can actually do the exact opposite of a 5-figure launch and land you a 5-figure loss, sending all your precious moolah straight to Zuckerberg's pocket.
Here's a truth bomb for you:
Loyal, high-paying, sustainable students won't need a huge discount to want to work with you!
They will be happy to pay what you're worth.
$27…$1,000...even $10,000…because your superpowers are helping them to solve a huge problem. Imagine if a dream student who would be happy to pay $1,000 for your course, jumps on board for just $27?
Sure, they scored a bargain, love that for them; but YOU end up missing out, big time. And after all the hard work you’ve poured into your business, you deserve to receive what you're worth.
So why are there so many Low Dollar Offers flying around? When do they actually work?
This week on The Shine Show, I'm exploring the in's and out's of Low Dollar Offers, how they work and how you can decipher if it's the right option for your next launch.
Don't even think about slashing your prices until you've listened to this episode.
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Scroll down for a full transcript of this episode
Hello, and welcome to episode number 165 of The Shine Show. Today, I'm getting a thorn out of my side. That thorn is these pesky little low-dollar offers that everyone thinks they're just going to throw it out there and it's going to be super easy. So today's episode is called, The Only Way Low-Dollar Offers Are Working Today, and you are going to walk away from this episode, having complete clarity about when and how to use these low-dollar offers that you see flying around everywhere. Enjoy the show.
Giving up your time and freedom to make money is so 2009. Hi, I'm your host Salome Schillack and I help online course creators launch, grow, and scale their businesses with Facebook and Instagram ads, so that they can make more money and have an even bigger impact in the world. If you are ready to be inspired, to dream bigger, launch sooner, and grow your online business faster, then tune in because you are ready to shine, and this is The Shine Show.
Hello, my friend, it's good to be hanging out with you today. I got asked the other day by Kirby on my team, she said, "So Salome, you told us about a year ago, six months ago that you are going to do the 100 100s at swimming. Where are we at with that?" She said, and well my friends, I am happy to announce to everyone, and the reason I'm telling you this is because I need accountability.
It's a funny thing, I never need accountability in my business. I'm really good with staying accountable to myself when it's business stuff, but sporty stuff, health stuff, not eating the chocolate, all the chocolate, getting my butt in the pool. Man, I need accountability, because I like working and I like watching TV, but when you hit 42, you can no longer just work and watch TV, your brain and your body freaks out when you do that. I have firsthand experience of that and I can hear a few of you giggling, who also have experience with that.
Man, this 40 thing is interesting. We are in the best years of our lives, my kids are growing up, they don't need me that much. I love the freedom and independence of kids who can do their own thing, and yeah, so I have officially enrolled in swimming, 100, 100 meters. It is going down on the 9th of September, 6:00 that evening I will be getting into the pool. The pool is 25 meters long and I will be swimming 400 laps in four hours. I have four hours to swim, 400 laps.
Breathe. The interesting thing that I will share a bit more with you all, one day here on the podcast is watching my brain freak out after making this commitment. There was the initial, well now I'm going to have to go swimming every single day and hustle my face off, anxiety, which I luckily was able to talk myself out of and I went, "No, hang on, there is no need to go into complete overdrive over this because... So you get in the pool and you don't finish it. Who cares? Doesn't matter. You got in the pool, you did some of it." But somewhere in the perfectionist brain that, or just at least the normal brain that wants things to be perfect, and wants me to really impress people, it went into overdrive.
My brain went into overdrive and said, "Well, now you're going to have to practice a lot more and work a lot harder, and go swimming every single day and hustle your face off." And then I was like, "Oh no, no, no, no, that will not be happening." And then my brain went to, "Well, what if you don't finish? What if you make fool of yourself? What if you get in the pool and you only finish 50 of the 100?"
And it was interesting, I was like, "Okay brain, nice job. Nice offering me up the trying to keep me safe. So what? If I only finished 50? So what? If I only finished 25? Who is the success police that tells us that we can only sign up for things if we're going to excel at them?" So I am consciously doing this so that I can retrain my brain to be more comfortable with failure.
So maybe I'm going to fail. I call it fail but I want to say maybe, just watching my brain freak out and being aware of how it is just doing what brains do and it has absolutely nothing to do with me getting in a swimming pool on the 9th of September and moving my arms and my legs until I'm done. And if everyone else does a 100 100s and I do 50 100s then the victory will be what I learned about my brain and how I created a safe space for myself to create distance between me and the nonsense that my brain dishes up for me, because the more I can learn that I am not my brain.
I am not my limiting beliefs. I am not the perfectionist beliefs that pop up. I am not the fear of failure. I am not the fear of embarrassment, or the fear of shame. It is not me. It is not my identity. It is just my brain chattering the way that brains do and if I can learn to look at it almost as a third person, pay attention to it, acknowledge it, and then not be so associated with it then that will help me in other areas of my life. It'll help me in the business, it will help me in my personal life, it'll help me in my marriage, it'll help me be a better mother, it'll help me in so many areas.
The more opportunity I have to learn how I am not my brain, I share this with you, bravely, confidently, and I'm excited to report to you how often my brain freaks out and how I am going on this journey. So stay tuned if you want to hear more about Salome's brain freaking out, over swimming. And then on the 9th of September, you better send me all your hugs and love and motivation and cheering and send me all the Powerade and bananas and pasta the night before, I'm going to have to carbo-load and watch me cry on Saturday the 10th, I'm probably going to sleep the whole day.
So that's what I'm up to my friends, but today I want to talk to you about something else. Today, I want to talk to you about the only way that low-dollar offers are working today and the reason I have created this episode, is because if I had a dollar for every time one of my students said, "This isn't working, I'm just going to try one of those low-dollar offers." I'd be rich, might be so rich and I want to say, I get it, they look so simple, they are so deceptively simple. Those $27 offers, those little tiny offers, those mini offers, those self-liquidating offers, is the fancy word that marketers use, and then they abbreviated to SLOs or SLO's.
But I want to say to you that those tiny offers, those $27 offers that you see, if you see it being advertised directly to you as a low-dollar offer, just know that there's a lot that goes into that, and it's an advanced ad strategy. Now I'm going to tell you how to do that because I want you to be empowered to do it, should you choose to do it.
But I'm also going to give you an alternative that is a lot easier, that is a lot cheaper, and that allows you to have a safe space where you can practice making offers without making tremendous donations to Mark Zuckerberg's pocket, that does not actually result in money in your pocket. So my hope is that at the end of this episode, you walk away and you have some idea of when it's the right time to use those tiny offers or self-liquidating offers, and when it's the absolute wrong time, and then you also know how to do it correctly.
So if you are one of my students, if you are either in A-lister or in The Launch Lounge, you would know that what I teach is we always, always start by building our email lists. And maybe somewhere in my programs, you've come across my little model that I'm working on, that I have shared with some of the students, I haven't shared with everyone but I've shared it on the podcast many times. I've just never called it a model but let me explain my little, my model of marvel.
My model of marvel for building online courses is basically this. There are only three things that you can control in your online courses business. You can control audiences, you can control your offer, and you can control your launch mechanism. Audiences are either social media audiences, or podcast listeners or YouTube watchers, or they might be people on your email list, or people visiting your website or people finding you from ads. Those are all audiences and you have a degree of control over that.
Then your offer, you can control your offer and the better you learn to listen to the needs of your ideal customer, the better you get at making offers. Most of us, me included, even if I have a marketing degree and I still had to learn from scratch, had to listen to my ideal customer, how to learn how to make an offer to my ideal customer? Because we just don't learn that stuff.
Even if like me, you have a marketing degree, well you were probably taught marketing the old fashioned way. I don't know those of you who are as old as me, you would remember the five P's of marketing, product, price, positioning, packaging, and something else, I don't remember what. That's the kind of stuff we learned at uni back in the 2000s. None of this online marketing stuff existed and certainly none of this direct-to-customer marketing existed, it was all TV ads.
Back in the day when I worked in an ad agency, the only digital stuff we did was websites. Most of the rest of the stuff were ads for magazines and radio ads and if you ask me about all of that stuff, I would've said, it's really exciting but if you told me 20 years later, will be advertising on mobile phones that we carry around, well, we did have mobile phones then, but if you told me, we'd be advertising on our mobile phones where we're scrolling on social media, I would've said you're crazy.
So this stuff is new and most of us have to learn this stuff from scratch and most of us are not good at making offers when we start out. So throwing Facebook ad money at offers that we haven't yet gotten good at making, is a sure way to waste a ton of money, but we can control what offers we make. We can control how often we make those offers and we can control how much we take the feedback from our audience into consideration once we've made the offers, so that we have the knowledge we need in order to tweak those offers. Right? So in that way, you can control your offer.
The last thing, and the third thing that you can control is your launch mechanism. You get to choose whether you use a webinar, a video series, challenge, workshop, an email sequence, there is a bit of a menu and you get to choose which one you use. And from my point of view, there are certain ones that work well for certain price points, and others that work better for those price points.
But the basic premise of, the basic foundation of what you should use as a deciding factor for which launch mechanism you use is what is your price point? The price point of your offer, because the higher the price point is, the larger you're going to need your audience to be and the more time you're going to need to spend with that audience. So if I'm selling a $30,000 one-on-one coaching consulting package, I'm not going to run an ad to cold traffic for a $30,000 thing.
No, I'm going to make that $30,000 thing my highest level offer that is only available to people who have already taken my courses, who already know, like and trust me so much. They already know, like and trust me, $30,000 much. Right? So I'm not going to lead with that.
Now I know that logic then makes people go, "Well, let me just run ads for $27 offers, because I can run ads and put a $27 offer right in front of people and then they'll buy." But here's the thing, here's why it's not working. It doesn't work because the algorithm, because A, most people who start, who wants to use that as a strategy, wants to use that because they think that's an easier offer to make.
If their other offers have not resulted in profit, they think it's easier to sell a $27 thing than it is to sell a $2,000 thing. And I want to tell you, it's harder to sell a $27 thing, than a $2,000 thing. Yeah, there I said it, it's harder to sell a $27 thing, than a $2,000 thing.
The reason I say that is when you're selling a $27 thing and you're selling it to people who have never in their lives heard of you, that offer needs to be so strong and compelling. You need to meet that ideal customer, you're putting the ad in front of, exactly where they are at in the right moment in time with a very specific clearly defined offer, so that's your first challenge.
So if you've ever thought that a $27 offer, to run ads to a $27 offer, is going to get you further than learning how to launch your online course or learning how to make offers to your email list, to get them into your lower dollar membership or course I want to say, it's not going to work that way.
The second thing that I want you to know about these $27 offers is if you think about the algorithm, and you think about how the algorithm works. So the algorithm is basically, think of it as a little spider that has to run through a network.
So picture, place sites, 60 million people with Facebook on their phones and they're all looking at Facebook at the same time and you've just put an ad, published an ad in Facebook and now the algorithm has to find the right people to put this ad in front of, and so that little spider starts to run and it runs through everybody's phones.
And whenever somebody clicks on your ad, the algorithm learns because the algorithm can see everything about that person and it goes, "Oh, okay. So here is a 27 year old male, who is interested in GQ magazine and also in protein powder and also in Netflix and also in beer. This is the person who clicked." Now, the algorithm learns that, and it skews where that little spider runs, to try to find more 27 year old males who are interested in beer and gym.
And now someone else clicks, and it looks at that person and it learns, and it puts the information together from person number one, from beer dude, to person number two. Now let's call person number two, a 27 year old female, who is into CrossFit. Okay. So we've got beer dude and CrossFit chick, and now the algorithm, it keeps running and it goes, "Oh." And it starts building up a profile of a typical person who's likely to click on the ad, and that little spider keeps running and keeps running and then it gets lucky and it gets into the newsfeed of someone who converts to a sale.
Now the algorithm knows what someone looks like who converts to a sale. Now let's say, this someone is a 32 year old, let's say it's a woman who is interested in professional basketball and she is interested in whole foods and she's interested in Netflix, and she's interested in World Cup Rugby, let's go with that. Okay, so now it converted someone. Now it is learning again.
Now the value of what it learned from the person who converted to a sale, versus all of those people who just clicked on the ad, the value of what it learned from the person who converted is weighs more, and it weighs more because you've optimized for conversion, because that's what you've told Facebook you want. You've said, "I want a conversion." And a conversion means, a person who buys my $27 thing, that is a conversion.
And so whilst that little spider was running through everybody's phones, trying to find this right person to put the content in front of, it learnt and it learnt and it learnt and then it put together what it learnt so that it can aggregate that information, to the point where it got a conversion. Whilst it got that conversion, it was like the alarm bells went off and it went, "Pew, pew, pew, pew! We have a conversion! We have a conversion!" And then it knows what that conversion looks like, and now that little spider starts running again, and it starts finding more people who are likely to convert.
My whole long story about the little spider, the point of it is this, the algorithm works hard to optimize and there are conditions that can be favorable for the algorithm to optimize, and conditions that are not favorable for the algorithm to optimize. When you are running a lead magnet ad, which is a free offer, the algorithm does not work as hard as it does when you're running a $27 offer, because fewer people are likely to take you up on the $27 offer than they are on the free offer, and because fewer people take you up on that $27 offer, the algorithm has to work harder.
Now we know because Facebook tells us, that in order for the algorithm to fully optimize, it needs about five conversions per day, five to 10 conversions per day. So you would need five to 10 sales of a $27 product, before the algorithm has enough information from learning to give you more sales.
Now let's assume for a second that you are making, let's say you're making a dollar on every sale, so that means if you have a $27 thing that you're selling, it's going to cost you $26 to make a sale, and you need five conversion, so 26 times five is $130. So you are going to need to spend at least $130 per day, just to be able to give the algorithm the minimum it needs, to get you five conversions so that it can optimize.
Hands up, if you have $130 a day, to spend on an offer that you haven't yet tested and that you don't know that it's working. Hands up, if you have $130 a day to spend on ads, if you haven't yet had a profitable online course launch. Hands up, if you still think a $27 offer is a good idea. It may be, for some of you because for some of you $120, $130 a day is probably peanuts compared to what you're spending in your launches, and that's great.
But nine out of 10 times, those tiny offers don't make a profit on the front end. Nine out of 10 times, the tiny, the $27 offer costs you $50 for a conversion, so you pay $50 per conversion to get a $20, $27 sale. Now you might be asking, "Well Salome, what is the sense of doing that if it's costing me $50 to get a $27 sale?" And I'll tell you what the benefit of that is, the benefit is two things.
Number one, someone who has forked out $27 is worth a lot more in your funnel down the track, than a free loader. So it could be worth paying to get better quality leads, leads who have already paid you. The other benefit of it is, you're not going to stop a $27 offer.
Once they click on that ad, there's going to be an order bump, so maybe you're going to say, "Well, you can get the upgraded version for another $17." And then they're going to say, "Yes, please." And then they're going to say, "Go to checkout." And when they go to checkout, they're going to go to another page that's going to sell them the next thing, that's $47 and then they're going to say, "Oh yes, please, I want this." And then that's going to take them to the next page that sells something for $97 and that's going to take them to the next sales. And do you know what I have done? I have bought from Mr. Frank Kern himself, his entire library of courses for $3,000 once, just that's it started with a $4 sale. I followed a $4 sale all the way up to $3,000 to buy his entire library of courses.
Now I know that, that's not what everybody does, but Mr. Frank Kern knew that there are freaks like me out there, who wants to buy every online course they can possibly get their hands on, because they are obsessed with online course launching. Do not judge me. And I have been looking at some of Frank's courses before, thinking, "Well, they're $5,000 a pop. I'm going to have to spend like 30k to get everything." So in my view, $3,000 was nothing, to get Frank all of his courses, everything he's ever created and so I did that.
But even if, most of the people who take you up on that front end, the $27, just add the order bump, you're still building your list with much better quality leads even if it costs you a little bit of money. So there is method in the madness of these $27. However, they are expensive because let's consider, if you need to pay, let's say you need to pay $50 to get a $27 conversion and you need five conversions a day, now we're talking about spending $250 a day.
$250 a day for an entire month is $7,500 that you're spending on ads. Hands up if that's in your budget. Yeah, I guess not, because I know that in my audience, there's maybe a handful of you with $7,500 to spend on list building per month. I'm not even spending that much on list building every month. So, what I want you to take away from this, is that you can control your audience, but there are better ways to do it than through these $27 offers.
You can control your offer, and if your offer is not converting, the solution is not to try to find a shortcut. The solution is to lean in even more and figure out why it's not working, not running $27 offers. And the third thing is, a launch mechanism for $27 offers is an advanced launch mechanism. It's an advanced ad strategy.
It's something you do, when you know you can sell your stuff with your eyes closed. It's something you do, when you know that paying for leads who have already paid you for your slow dollar offer, turns into more students for that $3,000 course or $30,000 coaching program. That's when the $27 offers work really well. That's when the $27 offers turn into profit. That's when you make money with $27 offers.
I asked my wonderful team who helps me put together the content for the podcast to research this a little bit, and find some other small things that are not so great, and we found on BuzzFeed this article, and I'm going to read to you some of these because I want to leave you laughing and I want to leave you knowing that $27 offers on Facebook ads are not the only tiny things that are annoying and that don't work. So here are some funny things, that is not necessarily better when it's bigger.
Someone on Reddit said, "Passing a kidney stone." That's true. Someone else said, "Cockroaches, especially when you travel in the more tropical areas." "What about pimples? Pimples are not necessarily better if they're bigger." "Cell phones, nobody likes to say, look at my big cell phone!" "What about when the curtain in your bedroom has that tiny little gap, that little gap that's letting in the sunrise and they penetrate your eyeballs, that's when little things are not necessarily better." Or the last one where smaller is not necessarily better is, "Fitted sheets. I mean, hello?" Oh, fitted sheets drives me nuts, Emil and I have one of those extra thick mattresses and trying to get a fitted sheet on there. How many nails have I broken trying to get a fitted sheet onto that mattress?
Okay. My friends, well that is that for today. Now, you know that smaller is not necessarily better, and what the only way is you should be using these tiny little offers. But talking of things that are better, that are bigger and brighter and bolder and gets you further in your online course launch, you have been waiting for the doors to open for The Launch Lounge, and this week the doors are actually officially open.
So if you want to become a member of the hottest community online for online course creators and membership owners, who are learning that there's no one-size-fits-all way to grow your launches, to scale your business, to bigger profits and more freedom, then I want to invite you to come and join us inside The Launch Lounge. We have coaching calls from ad people, launch planning people, marketing strategists, experienced online courses copywriters, you name it. We have got the support in there. We have the community in there for you and we have the education.
This is not a one-size-fits-all paint by numbers online course, just the information you need, when you need it to grow and scale your online course business. And you can join today by going to shineandsucceed.com/launch. I would love to see you inside The Launch Lounge, the doors will close again on Friday, come and join me inside The Launch Lounge, I'll see you there.
If you love this episode and you are a committed online course launcher who wants to learn how to grow your profits in your next course launch, and you want to know how to successfully scale your online courses business to seven figures and beyond, then I'd love to see you inside The Launch Lounge.
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