If you want to master something, learning from people that came before you seems to be a good idea, don't you think? The whole world is built on what has come before it. And if you study your field and study the people that came before you, you can end up with your own set of things pulled from multiple sources of inspiration. Nothing wrong with that. So we're going to talk about reverse engineering.
NOTE: Complete transcript available at the bottom of the page.
Screw The Commute Podcast Show Notes Episode 353
How To Automate Your Business – https://screwthecommute.com/automatefree/
Internet Marketing Training Center – https://imtcva.org/
Higher Education Webinar – https://screwthecommute.com/webinars[04:44] Tom's introduction to Reverse Engineering [06:49] Get a throwaway email address [07:32] Learn how to use screen capture software [08:47] Must stay organized to do this right [10:16] Google primary keywords to see your top competitors [12:24] Checking social profiles of your competitors [13:51] Sponsor message [17:19] Reverse engineering a sales letter
Higher Education Webinar – https://screwthecommute.com/webinars
Screw The Commute – https://screwthecommute.com/
Screw The Commute Podcast App – https://screwthecommute.com/app/
College Ripoff Quiz – https://imtcva.org/quiz
Know a young person for our Youth Episode Series? Send an email to Tom! – firstname.lastname@example.org
Have a Roku box? Find Tom's Public Speaking Channel there! – https://channelstore.roku.com/details/267358/the-public-speaking-channel
How To Automate Your Business – https://screwthecommute.com/automatefree/
Internet Marketing Retreat and Joint Venture Program – https://greatinternetmarketingtraining.com/
Camtasia – https://www.techsmith.com/video-editor.html
Ahrefs – https://ahrefs.com/
Link Explorer – https://moz.com/link-explorer
Buzzsumo – https://app.buzzsumo.com/discover/trending
Reverse Engineer Ads – https://flexxable.com/blog-how-to-reverse-engineer-ads-from-your-competitors/
Fonts Ninja – https://www.fonts.ninja/
Internet Marketing Training Center – https://imtcva.org/
Keyword Research – https://screwthecommute.com/1/
Voice Search – https://screwthecommute.com/130/
Membership Sites – https://screwthecommute.com/352/
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Episode 353 – Reverse Engineering
[00:00:08] Welcome to Screw the Commute. The entrepreneurial podcast dedicated to getting you out of the car and into the money, with your host, lifelong entrepreneur and multimillionaire, Tom Antion.
[00:00:24] Hey, everybody it's Tom here with episode three hundred and fifty three, Screw the Commute podcast. Today, we're going to talk about reverse engineering.
[00:00:32] Now, the old saying is don't reinvent the wheel, OK? That's what I'm going to talk about today. That is looking at other people's promotions and getting templates for your promotions. Now, this is not plagiarizing or underhanded in any way. In fact, I'm not sure. I don't think I've had an original idea in my entire life. I've gotten ideas from others and plugged it into my information. In fact, just one Web page, one Web page, not a whole site, just one Web page I copied with the full approval of its original writer. And it's pulled in more than a million dollars and they were thrilled about it. OK, so we'll get to that shortly. Now, hope you didn't miss Episode 352. That was membership sites. You want to have a wonderful monthly recurring income with minimal work. Well, that's when membership sites are all about. So check out that episode. Any time you want to go to a past episode, just go to screwthecommute.com and then the episode number so that one would be screwthecommute.com/352. Membership sites.
[00:01:53] All right, grab a copy of our automation ebook, it saved me millions and millions of keystrokes over many years. It just makes you go lightning fast with your work so you can go do the other things that you like or handle more customers and do more business you find it at screwthecommute.com/automatefree. It's got all kinds of tips for your cell phones, your tablets, your desktops, laptops and just every your email, everything to automate your business. While you're over there, pick up a copy of our podcast app at screwthecommute.com/app and we've got screen captures and video to show you how to use it so you can take us with you on the road on your cell phone and tablet.
[00:02:42] All right. Let me tell you about my school before we get going here. You got to get your your people in your life selling online. I'm telling you, don't keep pushing them into this traditional crap education. All the schools now are just freaking out because they're you know, what they're doing. They've been ripping you off for so long, they're still charging their fees like activity fees and things like that with no refunds, even when the kids are forced to stay at home and work online. I mean, just total rip offs. If these people you know, I've got a lot of work under my belt in the fraudulent and scam business because of the TV show developing called Scam Brigade.
[00:03:26] And these people would be in jail if they weren't colleges that have the whole world brainwashed, I mean, for robbing you. So check out my school, my school. It gives you marketable skills in a very short period of time that every business on Earth needs. All right. So the market is enormous. We've got people in it making money a month into when they started. OK, so this is just powerful stuff.
[00:03:54] And it just makes me sick of these traditional colleges robbing you to death and you're brainwashed in your neighbors. Think you're a bad parent if you don't send them to college. Well, your neighbor can go pound salt because they're idiots. You know, right now there's.
[00:04:10] Yeah, yeah. There's some things are going to be a doctor, accountant, engineer, something that requires certification. But that's ridiculous.
[00:04:19] When people could be making money now, instead of getting running up large amounts of debt and then coming out with MBAs and competing for jobs at Starbucks, it just just infuriates me.
[00:04:32] So check my school out at IMTCVA.org And I'll tell you a little bit later how you can get a full scholarship for someone close to you if you're in my mentor program.
[00:04:45] All right. Let's get to the main event. I mean, if you want to master something, learning from people that came before you seems to be a good idea, don't you think? I mean, people have thought I mean, the whole world is built on what has come before it. And if you study your field and study the people that came before you, you can end up with your own set of things pulled from multiple sources of inspiration. Nothing wrong with that. So we're going to talk about reverse engineering.
[00:05:18] Now, the definition, the dictionary definition is the reproduction of another manufacturer's product following detailed examination of its construction or composition. OK, another one's taken apart a device to see how it works. This is sometimes called backwards engineering or back engineering, but we're going to apply this concept to marketing rather than tearing apart a physical product to see how it was built. And there's a treasure trove of marketing online.
[00:05:50] I mean, you can turn on your computer without getting pummeled with different promotions. Now, much of it is not successful, but if you see something over a long period of time, it's probably making money and working for the promoter. So it's a good idea to capture as much of the promotion as you can. So you can look at it more closely later and tear it apart.
[00:06:14] Now, when you're going through a promotion, most of the time you can't back up easily.
[00:06:19] So that so that part of the promotion is lost. But if you record it, you can review it later.
[00:06:28] And if you can make verbal notes to yourself while you're going through the promotion, at least if you can figure out how to do it, you can also make comments out loud that will get recorded so that you kind of remember when you're reviewing this later, what you were thinking and what you were seeing as you went through the promotion.
[00:06:49] Now, I suggest you get a throwaway email address for this, because you're going to be signing up for lots of promotions and you probably don't want your main inbox flooded forever with promotional emails now. Now, for me, I'm such a fanatic. I don't mind because there's not been a week gone by in my very long 26 years online that I haven't seen something where I said to myself, hey, that's a good idea, I should try that.
[00:07:18] Or that subject line really grabbed me or something like that. So if you're serious about this, I mean, don't get a throw away, just keep marketing stuff in front of you all the time. So you got to start thinking like a marketer.
[00:07:32] Now, one thing you need to learn to make your life so much easier when you try to reverse engineer a promotion is to learn how to use screen capture software on both your desktop and cell phone.
[00:07:44] And I'm talking both static screen captures and video screen captures.
[00:07:50] Both iPhones and Androids have the ability to make a recording of what's going on on their screens.
[00:07:57] You just have to go to YouTube to get a tutorial on how to do it on whatever phone you have or tablet for laptops and desktops. I use the gold standard Camtasia, but there are others just Google video screen capture software.
[00:08:13] So what you're going to do is when you see an ad, let's say a Facebook ad that gives you some freebie in exchange for your email address, you turn on your screen recorder and then to start the ball rolling, you put in your throw away or your email address and see what happens. You'll see their confirmation page, their download page for your freebie. All the while your screen recorder is watching so you can capture all the pages they show you and then you can go back and pick them apart later. Now, you got to stay organized with this, I mean, you may get an email and click through to a blog posting where you are Pixelate, that's on other episodes I talk to you about.
[00:08:59] When you land on something smart marketers will put a picture kind of like a fancy cookie on you so they can advertise to you later. So you'll start seeing ads for the product or service other places. And you need to make notes on where you see the follow up ads and what they say.
[00:09:19] Now, you can use regular screen capture for static ads they show you and use your video screen capture if they're sending you further videos to watch, keep all the things you capture for that promotion in a separate folder. So in a couple of days, you will see the bulk of the promotion.
[00:09:40] Now, it might take longer for you to get all the follow up emails and promotions they send you because they're going to be spaced out over time. But you want to capture them and get them all in the same folder. So you always have that promotion to look at later and save copies of all the emails.
[00:09:57] Take a look at the copy. Are they plain text or HTML? Are the links high up in the email or near the bottom? Are there any graphics in the email? What day of the week did you get the email?
[00:10:10] All of these are things that you can emulate again, if you see it over and over and over again, it's probably working. Now, let's take a look at some other you know, that part of the method that you can incorporate when you're reverse engineering? Well, you can just Google your primary keywords, which will bring up your some of your top competitors. Now, just because they come up on the first page of Google, they might be great at that, but lousy at promotions. We don't know that at this point. However, it's a good place to start. So you'll find your your people. Now, it's a good idea to use the like the incognito window of Google Chrome so that, you know, it's not remembering things that you've looked at already. It'll give you a better idea of what most people would see.
[00:11:00] See, if you're in a regular browser, it kind of remembers whether the stuff you like and excuse the results we want, you know, clear results.
[00:11:08] So use your incognito window. And again, if you don't know how to do that up near the right, you can usually click on some buttons or little dots and and then says open a new incognito window. So now you've identified a bunch of people.
[00:11:23] Now you go to their sites and then you can use tools to check out who's linking to them. This is another cool reverse engineering thing. Is back links or people linking to your site is very valuable to you in the search engines so you can reverse engineer and see who's linking to your top competitors. That may be one of the main reasons they're up high in the rankings. And then you can go to those people that are linking to your competitors and see if they'll link to you. Also, they might not have any love for your competitor. They might just think it's a good topic and a good site to link to. And there's places used to be really easy and free to do this. But now there's places that'll check backlinks like Ahrefs, Opensite Explorer. I think BuzzSumo's still has them. But you want to check, you know, just Google backlink checker then.
[00:12:24] Now that you've got these names of people and you've got who's linking to them, that can be a whole program of going after links to your site. Check their social profiles. Find out if they're working with any influencers that are promoting their name, you know, just put their name in and see all the places they show up, that's reverse engineering a competitor.
[00:12:46] Also, keep your eye out and reverse engineer what keywords they're using. You might have not done any real keyword research, which is that's against my system. That's the number one episode of this podcast is Keyword Research. And also episode one 30 is also an update on voice search. But anyway, you want to see the kind of keywords your competitors are using and you might find a bunch that you forgot about or didn't even know about.
[00:13:18] You can even check the fonts that they're using. It's fonts.ninja, is the website for it. And you can evaluate a site to see what fonts they're using. Don't get too crazy with fonts because you don't want the site to look like a circus tent.
[00:13:39] But if they came up high in the search rankings, you know, it's probably working for them. And then you got to do this over and over again as time goes by, because new ads will be coming out all the time.
[00:13:51] All right, let me tell you a little bit about my mentor program and then I want to tell you about the page that has made over a million dollars that with the the approval of the person that wrote the original page, I made over a million dollars and just pretty much copied their page. OK, this wasn't any multilevel marketing crap either. It was all my information. I'll tell you about that in a minute. What I want to tell you about is, is my mentor program. It's the longest running, most successful, most unique ever in the field of Internet and digital marketing. Tied to it is my school, which is the only licensed, dedicated Internet marketing school in the entire country, probably the world, and it teaches hard core skills. Now what how can I blatantly say mine's the best, the most unique and the most successful and all that stuff? Well, here's some reasons why I can say that. And I triple dog dare you to find another program that can match mine. I've been saying that for over 20 years. Not one person has dared try. First of all, it's one on one. So all of the training is one on one with me and the entire staff that I've trained. So you don't have to be lumped in with people more advanced or than you or beginners, because if they're more advanced than you're lost. If if they're beginners, you're bored. No, that's that's not efficient and it's no good. The other thing is, is my success is tied to your success. So guys at my level were charging 50 or hundred thousand bucks to train you with this stuff. And most of them were rip offs. They wouldn't even do it properly. So I said, that's no good. I'm going to tie my success to your success.
[00:15:41] So you pay a relatively small entry fee. But then for me to get my fifty thousand, you have to make two hundred thousand. Will people love this? And seventeen hundred plus students later. It's still going strong after 20 years. Also unique, you may have an immersion weekend where you actually live in the house. We got the great Internet marketing retreat center. You actually live here for an immersion weekend, of course, after the pandemic and then other things that are unique.
[00:16:12] You get a scholarship to my school, which you can either use yourself or gift to someone. It's a nineteen thousand dollar scholarship. But if you're in my mentor program, I want to do everything possible to get you successful. And and it kind of makes sense, doesn't it? Because I don't get my big money unless you make big money. So so I going to do everything possible to help you towards those goals. So been running twenty years. No lawsuits against me, no people begging for refunds.
[00:16:41] I mean none of that stuff because I take care of people. So that's at greatinternetmarketingtraining.com. Check it out. Give me a call. You start immediately. As soon as we sign our agreements, get your deposit in and boom, you're on your way. And I mean, not only making money, I save people fortunes because they make so many mistakes. I don't even allow them to spend any money unless they ask me first. And I've just saved millions of dollars for students that would have gotten ripped off because they didn't know any better. So that's not going to happen to you if you're around me.
[00:17:19] All right. So let's get back to the main event. I want to tell you about this Web page that I reverse engineered. It was written by Corey Rudl, who was my first Internet mentor. He was kind of the grandfather. Thirty year old grandfather of Internet marketing, making five million dollars a year from his apartment. All right. So that was my first trainer.
[00:17:42] And as soon as I got good training, I started making money. But one of the things that he taught me was about reverse engineering, other successful Web pages.
[00:17:56] And so. He had the sales letter selling his one hundred ninety seven dollar course and it started out and first of all, what you would do is you'd print out something, you see, that's been around a long time and known to be successful.
[00:18:13] You'd print it out. And then in the margins, I would make notes to myself about like, what do I thought that paragraph was for? So he started his out. I just came back from the track. You know, I really like racing cars. It's so much fun and exciting.
[00:18:31] So I put I wrote a paragraph similar to that, but I said, hey, I just came back from riding my recumbent bike.
[00:18:40] It gets me out of this computer and gets me some exercise and gets me some fresh air.
[00:18:45] So basically, I wrote next to the his paragraph, I'm just a regular guy that likes stuff, you know? And then I wrote a paragraph that matched me and then I went paragraph to paragraph.
[00:18:59] With trying to think, why did he write that paragraph and then matching some information from mine, so you would never in a million years be able to tell that I just took that sales letter with his blessing and made my sales letter out of it, but it's made over a million dollars over the years. All right. So that's reverse engineering a sales letter. You don't have to think up everything on your own. You just find something that's successful, you know, analyze it and plug in your information.
[00:19:34] So that's I mean, I hate to simplify it, and I don't in any way want you to think I'm talking about plagiarizing or stealing people's stuff, especially in the field of marketing. This is very common that we even call it a swipe file. We see something we like. We swipe it and save it and then adapt it to our use. Very common. Everybody does it. It's nobody thinks anywhere ever that it's underhanded or plagiarizing. So, I mean, I'm not telling you just copy somebody's stuff direct. Now, in some cases in multilevel marketing, which we don't really you're not a big fan of, it might make sense, you know, because it's the same exact product and you're just reaching different people with it. But and they're, you know, somebody that knows that it's going to work once you because you're in their downline and they want you to be successful because they make more money.
[00:20:29] But that's not really what we're talking about here.
[00:20:32] We're talking about adapting something that works to your stuff and that's reverse engineering can make you a fortune and save you enormous amounts of time. And if you don't feel like you're creative enough to make up these different promotions and have these different sales and confirmation pages and follow ups and pixelate, it's going to show you what somebody else is doing. And then you can just hire a geek to reproduce it with your information.
[00:20:59] All right. So that's it. Reverse engineer your way to success. We'll catch ya on the next episode. See you later.
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