On the edge and other clichés

posted in: Rants, Road to Success | 10

On the edge and other clichés

On the edge and other clichés

Alright, last week of July and things are proceeding to kind of suck. The best thing to do when things suck is to take some action and provide some value. That’s just what I mean to do, b’gum! So, here we go…


Alright, so I spent a week with my younger son at scout camp a few weeks ago. We had a grand time except for walking up and down the mountainside. It’s pretty of steep and it’s like a mile from the program area to our campsite. Yowtch! That being said, the Boy Scouts have a teaching acronym called EDGE.

This means:

E – Explain how it is done. Tell them.

D – Demonstrate the steps. Show them.

G – Guide the learners as they practice. Watch them do it.

E – Enable them to succeed on their own. Use memory aids, practice it, they teach it to others.

It occurs to me that this accurately describes a mature information marketing business. Each of the steps can be applied to the processes you hear about all the time in IM. As such:

E – Explain – This is the lead magnet or squeeze page report. You explain the basics in a free report or video in order to make them aware of something they didn’t even realize they needed to succeed in whatever your chosen niche is. This corresponds to the axiom, “Give the what and sell the how“.

D – Demonstrate the steps – This is the front end product and possibly some deep-dive upsells. Whatever it is you’re teaching, this is where you trade your expertise for their money. Like the lead magnet, this is a static product that you produce once and sell as many times as you can.

G – Guide the customers – This can be something as simple as a one hour coaching call. Of course, the one hour coaching call can easily lead to a coaching program, membership site or classroom situation.

E – Enable them to succeed on their own – This is the ultimate goal of your business regardless of your niche. You want people to be able to lose weight, find their soul mate, make money, be a better golfer, have well-behaved dogs or whatever. It is up to the customer to determine how much help they need from you. What you need to do is to be in a position to provide whatever help they decide they need. The more products and services you can provide to this end that actually help your customers, the more successful you will be.

Cool? I thought you’d enjoy that insight.

What’s Cookin’?

Alright, so what is Rob up to these days? About 270 after all the camp food. I wasn’t counting on gaining weight at camp considering how many miles we had to walk to get anywhere, but it is what it is.

What I’ve got on the burner is a quiz-based lead scenario. I’ve taken an idea I heard from Rob Jones a while back and started putting it into action. It has required me to learn PHP, but that’s no problem.

Even if you’re not techy, you can always hire someone to do this bit for you. I’ll probably make a service/product out of it at some point if I can get it to box up nicely.

The premise is that by asking a couple of simple questions, I can route customers to email lists and affiliate offers that are most relevant to them. In this case, there are age, gender and goal-specific weight loss methodologies as the result of the quiz. More on that as I get the thing built.  You can see a sample of the quiz-in-progress here.

Another thing I did recently was to help a friend understand how to use iframes to mask an affiliate link.

Thing is, sometimes when you promote a product from ClickBank the hoplink is typically quite ugly but the vendor site domain takes over. In some cases, the vendor site just shows the hoplink or some variation of the domain plus your affiliate ID. In either case, it can be a bit problematic.

Potential customers can be put off by ugly URLs. Unscrupulous affiliates can steal your sales. You can just be a snob for pretty URLs like I am.

In any case, one way to get around all this mess is to use an iframe to contain the vendor’s site. This is going to seem scary if you’re not technical, but don’t get hung up on that. I’m going to keep it crazy simple.

Here’s a bit of code you need to have:

<!DOCTYPE html>
 <title>***Put a title that makes sense to you here***</title>
 <p>Your browser does not support iframes.</p>

So, you’d copy this code to a text editor like Notepad and change the two lines with the asterisks. When you’re happy with your changes, save it as index.html someplace where you can find it easily such as your desktop or a project folder.

Quick note on the height: You may need to adjust this value if you find that the bottom of the ClickBank product’s sales page is getting cut off. If it is, just keep adding 1000 to the height until the whole sales page is showing at your destination.

Once you have your index.html file defined, all we need to do is create a folder on your site.

You can do this with an FTP program like Filezilla or your site’s cPanel File Manager. Create a folder that has a short name that is somehow pertinent to the offer.

You can name it after the product you’re promoting but I recommend something a bit more generic. The reason I say this is that you can go back and change the hoplink if you find the offer isn’t converting very well for you.

It’s easier to do this on a generic link like yourdomain.com/bettergolfer than it is on a product-specific link like yourdomain.com/6minutegolfswingfix would be. With a bettergolfer link, you could switch hoplinks as much as you needed to.

Once you’ve created your folder, you can then upload your index.html to the folder and BOOM! you’ve got yourself a totally fabu custom link like the one I used as an example for my friend.

You can see that here.

Lolz, cottage cheese butt?!? I just crack me up. :^D

Okay, I got my nerd on. Let’s talk about something a bit less technical now.

Admiring from afar

You may know him.

You may know of him.

You may never have heard of him before.

In any case, Caliban Darklock is a very polarizing kind of guy. He’s a certifiable genius, but with that enormous brain comes a bit of abrasive behavior. Nobody’s perfect. Even if he’s not perfect, he is an amazing teacher.

I’ve been reading his Badass Manifesto from the very beginning and I strongly recommend that you do as well. He’s not everybody’s cup of tea, but in honesty he’s really spot on with this blog.

I’ve been binge-reading it over the last couple of days and I think you’d find it helpful if you’re willing to be open-minded and not get hung up on some of his crude humor. If you’re offended by pictures of poop and the uninhibited use of the F-bomb, don’t bother.

Actually, this is all the more reason for you to read his stuff (to see the world through different eyes and really learn a bit about human nature), but let’s not add stress to your life if such things genuinely offend you. I’m just putting it out there for people who want to grow.


Well, that’s enough blogging for one day. Hope you enjoyed it and learned something. Let me know what you’d like to learn about and I’ll do my best to rant about that.


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10 Responses

    • Rob Knowlan

      Hey Jennifer,

      Glad you enjoyed the content. Caliban is a highly successful computer programmer, internet marketer and social media maven. The thing that makes this blog unmissable, particularly when read from the very first post onward is his analysis of human nature and how it pertains to running your own online business. He’s really insightful and lays it out quite methodically. I hope you’ll take the time to absorb what he has to say. It’s well worth it.


  1. Michel Snook

    Now I can add EDGE to SMART… the first for processes, the second for goal setting with feedback.

    Dealing with affiliate links has always been somewhat problematic. Amazon provides iFrames and others don’t. I have used link-cloakers and even redirects with mixed results. I’ve come to the conclusion it all depends upon what you are promoting. If it is Internet marketing related stuff, other affiliates could cheat (and more likely to do so). If it is for dog training, it isn’t a big deal.

    Never heard of Caliban Darklock until reading this post (sounds like a Star Wars character). Most highly intelligent people are abrasive (normally don’t tolerate less intelligent people very well, or at least have as much patience).

    July is usually a slow month online with nice weather and people off to go on vacations (holiday).
    Michel Snook recently posted…4 Parts to Affiliate Success Step 4My Profile

  2. Susan O'Dea

    Hi Rob,

    I’m like Sarah, I love your acronym EDGE for marketing reminders…and Caliban is certainly a very clever man. I am in a FB group where his comments often make me stop and think about what he has said.

    As for affiliate links, I seem to remember doing something like that almost a decade ago and a Clickbank seller contacted me and told me to remove my website. He thought I had cloned his site as my affiliate link was ranking higher than his! I wish I could remember what I did LOL…anyway, I still cloak my links today to make them prettier, I just don’t do whatever it was years ago. 🙂
    Susan O’Dea recently posted…Brand Building Strategies To Use In Your MarketingMy Profile

  3. Patti Stafford

    Great post, Rob. I like the EDGE. So many things it can go with. Michel can go with SMART EDGE. 😉

    I don’t follow Caliban, but he shows up in my circle of friends. He is quite the character. He’s a bit like Tony Shepherd—he doesn’t candy coat and he’s not afraid to use foul language.
    Patti Stafford recently posted…Quick Start into Freelance WritingMy Profile

    • Rob Knowlan

      Thanks, Mike, that means a lot coming from you. Your content is always well worth the read. Glad you got something out of it. :^)

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