Dan Kennedy: 10 Lessons I Learned from the Marketing Legend

Dan Kennedy has had more influence in my business than anyone else.  I consider him my best mentor and personal business hero, even though I have never met him in person.  He’s taught me so much about marketing, specifically direct marketing, that it has literally transformed my business.

Listed below, I want to share 10 valuable business lessons I learned from Dan Kennedy. What you see in parentheses is the book I learned the lesson(s) from. These are listed in no particular order.

# 1 It is a Myth That Any Sale is Better Than No Sale (NO BS Price Strategy)

My Take: You have to be smart about your pricing and sales strategy.  You need to make sure that every sale puts profits in your cash register.  Never sell a product or service and lose money doing it.  More importantly, don’t think that more sales are the answer to your cash flow problems.  It’s much better to make fewer sales, but have higher profit margins than make more sales with very low profit margins.

# 2 No Other Business Offers You The Kinds of Fascinating and Lucrative Opportunities as Information Marketing Does (Get Rich Guide to Information Marketing)

My Take: Information marketing is a very lucrative business model.  It is quite perhaps the only industry that lets you mark up your products 7 to 20 times the cost (or more).  More importantly, people are always hungry for good information that will teach them something new or help them solve a problem.  You can take the knowledge and expertise that you have and turn it into profitable information products.  I’ve followed his advice and built my own successful information marketing business.

# 3 Leadership is Not About Outworking Everybody (NO BS Time Management)

My Take: As the business owner you have to work smart.  Putting in long hours does not guarantee your success.  You have to spend most of your working hours on tasks that produce income.  This includes sales, marketing, lead generation and customer acquisition.  All other tasks are inferior to these tasks and should be delegated to employees or independent contractors, or done during your non-productive time.  Simply put, work smart.  If you have to put in long hours, do so.  But by all means analyze how you are spending your time and make sure you are getting a good return on investment for your time.

# 4 The Entrepreneur’s Responsibility is This: Maximum Profit and Wealth to His Shareholders (No BS Wealth Attraction)

My Take: Companies do not exist to pay taxes or create jobs.  That is what most people think the purpose of a business is.  The truth is, the only purpose of a business is to make money for the people who own the business.  If you own a business, do not feel entitled to your employees.  Pay them well, treat them well, and always pay your taxes, but remember that your top responsibility is to make money for YOU.  If that means you have to layoff employees, so be it! Never forget your true purpose.  You are not in the welfare business.  You are in the making a profit business.

# 5 It is Your Job to Align Your Offering with a Group of People Who Love What You are Selling And Are Willing to Pay for It (NO BS Price Strategy)

My Take: Not everyone is a potential customer.  Well, maybe if you are selling toilet paper everyone might be a customer.  Your job is to determine your target market: the people who want your product and have the money to buy it at the price you sell it for.  Spend your time figuring out who your target market is BEFORE you create a product or service to sell.  Learn everything you can about your target market.  Once you start marketing the product or service, make sure you focus on marketing exclusively to people in your target market, through direct response marketing.  Simply put, find the people who will want what you have to offer.

# 6 Income is Temporary and Perishable.  Value and Equity Can Be Built to Last (No BS Wealth Attraction)

My Take: Cash flow goes up and down in any business.  There are always business cycles.  Your goal is to create equity in your business, so you can cash out one day for a huge profit.  Yes, you need sales to pay the bills and keep the business going, but never forget the big goal, to create a business that you can sell for six, seven or even eight figures when you want to get done the business.

# 7 Weight Loss, Skin Care and Beauty, Kitchen Gadgets, and Moneymaking Opportunities Have Been Proven Very Reliable (Make Millions with Your Ideas)

My Take: These are all great industries to get involved in.  People are always buying products and services in these niches.  The products and services may come and go, but the market stays strong.  Make sure that you pick a strong target market BEFORE you start looking (or creating) products and services to sell.

# 8 It is Very Difficult to Make a Profit by Direct Marketing a $19, $29, $39 or even $49 item these days.  Personally, I Would Not Undertake a Campaign for Anything Priced Below $99, and I’d Prefer Something Priced Higher (Make Millions with Your Ideas)

My Take: This is something it took me YEARS to figure out.  It’s just as easy to sell a $497 product as it is a $27 product.  When you have low prices you really don’t have much money for marketing.  And that creates huge problems.  You need to make sure your products and services have high enough margins so you can afford to advertise.  Otherwise, you will spend yourself broke trying to make sales.

# 9 Determine to Build a Salable Asset, Not Just a Business (Make Millions with Your Ideas)

My Take: This tip goes hand in hand with number six.  The bottom line is that equity is more important than cash flow.  Yes, you need both to survive.  But # 1 goal with a business is to build an asset that has equity and income, which puts you in a great position when you want to sell your business one day.

# 10 Sell the Same Information In a Number of Different Formats, At a Variety of Different Prices (Make Millions with Your Ideas)

My Take: People learn in different ways.  You need to make sure that you offer your products and services in different formats.  For instance, turn your book or manual into audio, video, seminars and coaching.  Some people will purchase one format and others will purchase every format you offer.  This puts more money in your pocket and helps your business make more money from the same customers.

Final Thoughts

These are the top 10 business lessons I’ve learned from Dan Kennedy.  If I was to list everything I learned from the guy, I could build a whole website about it.  If you are looking to take your business to the next level, or if you simply want to improve your marketing skills, I can’t think of a better person to study than Dan Kennedy.

What are your thoughts? What business lessons have you learned from Dan Kennedy?  Leave a comment and let us know.  I look forward to hearing from you.  Have a great day.

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8 thoughts on “Dan Kennedy: 10 Lessons I Learned from the Marketing Legend

  1. Mickiyas

    #2 is spot on. I’m passionate about information marketing and love everything about it. There’s nothing like earning an income by sharing what you know, and helping others.

    Also, I agree with #10. Selling high-end products and services is more profitable than selling low-end ones.

    It all comes down building a strong sales funnel. In other words, offering higher value, higher priced products as your leads move through a sales funnel.

  2. Diamond Grant

    The tenth tip makes so much sense. Not every person learns in the same way, so why not make information available in a variety of formats? It allows you to reach the maximum number of people and make a larger profit. Plus, it demonstrates that you care about the various needs and learning styles of your customers. Most people just think about sharing information in the format they are the most comfortable with, but widening the reach seems so much smarter.

  3. Greg Boudonck

    Dan sure knows how to bluntly say things that make a person think. As with #1, so many businesses believe any sale is better than no sale, and Dan goes completely against that. I remember my days of wheeling and dealing with collector coins, and in many cases, collectors would try to get me to come down in price. I learned quickly to never do it. There is always someone that would pay the price I was asking if they didn’t buy it. The system I used to handle this is: I would laugh and say, “I tell you what, I will give you the coin right now for ______” raising the price by 20-30 or even $100 and I would laugh. I would then tell them sorry, but the price marked is what it sells for. Usually, they would buy it.

  4. Mark Scott

    Thanks Chuck! Sometimes it’s difficult to translate Dan Kennedy’s teachings to apply to them to my online marketing, so this is an excellent update to Dan’s trainings.

    I look forward to the rest of the series.


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