How to Gather 100,000 Emails in One Week (Includes Successful Templates, Code, Everything You Need)

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This story is about the launch of Harry’s, a new men’s grooming brand.

Specifically, it will explain how they gathered nearly 100,000 email addresses in one week (!).  This post includes all the email templates, open-source code, and insider tricks that you can use to replicate their success.  It’s similar in depth to my previous how-to post, Hacking Kickstarter: How to Raise $100,000 in 10 Days.

This post is of great personal interest to me, as I’ll be doing a ton of fun stuff with email soon.  For a sneak peek, click here.  Now, on to Harry’s…

Harry’s started small and grew quickly.  They now have 40 domestic employees, an online store, a barbershop in New York, and a thriving online magazine called Five O’Clock. Harry’s also recently raised 100+ million dollars to buy the 94-year-old German factory that makes it blades.  By doing so, they added 427 people to their team. Today, you can find Harry’s products on harrys.com, in select J Crew stores, and at more than 65 men’s boutiques and hotels across the country.

This is piece was written by Jeff Raider, Co-Founder and Co-CEO of Harry’s, with input from key members of the Harry’s team.

Prior to Harry’s, Jeff co-founded Warby Parker, a brand offering designer-like eyewear at lower prices, which also helped pioneer the “buy one, give one” model.

Enjoy!… Read More

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How to Write a Bestselling Book This Year — The Definitive Resource List and How-To Guide

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If you want to write a bestselling book, don’t reinvent the wheel.

I get at least a dozen email a week from friends who want to write books.

After three #1 bestsellers from 2007 to 2012, and publishing in 35+ countries, I’ve tried a lot. Having experimented with everything from “traditional” (Random House) to Amazon Publishing, from BitTorrent Bundles to self-publishing audiobooks, I’ve developed strong opinions about…

- What works and what doesn’t.
– What sucks and what doesn’t.
– What makes the most money and what doesn’t.

This post is intended to answer all of the most common questions I get, including:
– “Should I publish traditionally or self-publish?”
– “How does a first-time author get a 7-figure book advance?”
– “How do I get a good agent or publisher? Do I even need an agent?”
– “What does the ‘bestseller list’ really mean? How do you get on one?”
– “What are your top marketing tips if I have little or no budget?”
– “What are the biggest wastes of time? The things to avoid?”
– And so on… Read More

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How to Dominate Any Tradeshow, and Why Even Solo Entrepreneurs Should Try

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Lance Kalish and Ido Leffler Yes To Carrots
Lance Kalish and Ido Leffler of Yes To Carrots

Intro by Tim

How do you build a multi-million dollar global business?

Well, you might start by visiting Israel and negotiating the rights to an unknown brand (Yes To Carrots)…found in 16 stores. Then, you might use cold calling artistry and Jedi mind tricks to get carried by Walgreen’s in its 7,000+ stores. Next, you might get your product into 25,000+ stories internationally and smile when you see Rosario Dawson using your goods publicly. Now, as the happy ending (of sorts), every 6 seconds in the US, someone buys a Yes To product!

But that’s leaving out the details, isn’t it? I hate business articles and books that do that.

I’ve known Ido Leffler, Yes To’s co-founder, for ages. I met him at a Summit Series event in Miami. His trademark hug was the first thing that caught my attention: inexplicably slow-motion and super gentle, as if he were cradling a baby panda. Of course, there’s his subtle Australian accent and persuasive (and deliberately less subtle) Israeli chutzpah. Who the hell was this guy? I’ve come to love him, but perhaps more important to you, I’ve come to love his methods. He deconstructs problems like Sherlock Holmes with a twist of Richard Branson… Read More

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Marc Ecko's 10 Rules for Getting "Influencer" Attention

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marc_ecko_-_Google_Search

The dream is simple: get your product in the hands of celebrities or “influencers,” and they create a ripple effect that skyrockets you to fame and fortune.

What if Kim Kardashian tweets about you?
What if Hugh Jackman wears your custom shirts on the red carpet?
What if a top blogger includes you in a top-10 list?
What if you got a mention on The Office or another primetime show?

Sadly, sampling to “stars” seldom works out.

People who move the needle get a TON of stuff sent to them. The pic below is just part of my mail, and I’m not even a real celeb! Blurb and blog promotion requests received in one day, with the exception of one book:

One day's blurb and blog requests

So…how do YOU break through the noise?

This guest post will teach you. It’s written by Marc Ecko, founder of Marc Ecko Enterprises, a global fashion and lifestyle company. I wanted Marc to write this post because — in my opinion — he’s an expert at selling yourself without selling out. As CNBC put it, “Marc is living proof that you can be a marketing and business whiz and still be a true artist.”

Once a graffiti artist with no connections, Marc left the safety net of pharmacy school to start his own clothing company. Using hustle and creativity, he turned a $5,000 bag of cash into a global corporation worth hundreds of millions of dollars.

He created a lot of this success by repeatedly getting his products to impossible-to-reach icons (e.g. Spike Lee, Chuck D) and planning elaborate PR stunts (e.g. Air Force One graffiti hoax; buying Barry Bonds’ homerun record baseball and letting online votes determine its fate).

This post will explain his 10 rules — the do’s and don’ts — of his unique “swag bomb” approach to getting influencer attention. I agree with all of them.

Enjoy, replicate, and prosper… Read More

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How to Get National Press With No Budget (Plus: One Year of Mentorship from Alexis Ohanian)

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Preface from Tim

This is the second post by Alexis Ohanian for Entrepreneurship Week on this blog. Here is the first post, which covers his founding of reddit, which he later sold for millions of dollars.

This post covers a critical topic: how to get massive attention for your company from national media. How do you pitch press? Develop relationships with influential journalists?  The real answers might surprise you.

Most books and articles on this subject are pure BS. Speaking as someone who’s been on magazine covers (Outside, Inc. Magazine) and section covers (NYT Style Section, Travel Section), I can tell you: there is a science to this.

Alexis is a master. Enjoy.

Enter Alexis

I’m back!

Tim very kindly invited me back to give you another excerpt from my book that draws from all my experience over six years as a Y Combinator advisor and startup investor (70+ companies).

I want to help you do what Steve and I did (not in costume) to grow reddit into the top-50 website it is today… with a total advertising budget of a few hundred dollars. I spent that all on stickers… Read More

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Tim Ferriss Interviews Neil Strauss, 7x New York Times Bestselling Author, on the Creative Process

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Did you enjoy this sample of creativeLIVE content?

If so, you’ll love my extended interview of author Neil Strauss on The Tim Ferriss Show podcast. Click below to stream or you can find it on iTunes (see #15):

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Case Studies: How to Build Online Businesses That Gross $250,000+ Per Month

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Debbie Sterling’s GoldieBlox is now grossing $300,000+ per month.

My specialty is modeling success. I analyze what works and ask: what recipe can I find that others can use?

In this post, we’ll look at five successful online businesses. Some of them (e.g. GoldieBlox) are now grossing $300,000+ per month…and it’s the founder’s first company! One (Fresh-Tops) has gone from 1 to 20 employees in six months. Some of the other stats are even more impressive.

Out of more than 10,000 contestants in the 2012 Shopify Build-a-Business Competition, these are the five businesses that sold the most in completely different categories:

Design, Art and Home
Gadgets and Electronics
Fashion and Apparel
Canadian [Because Shopify is based in Canada. Go Canucks!]
Everything Else

What do they have in common? And what can you replicate on your own?

For both questions, the answer is: more than you think.

The highest monthly sales by a contestant in the FIRST two months of starting, excluding any pre-existing businesses, was $196,811. How would that change your life?

Without further ado, let’s analyze these five rock stars, looking at what they did right and, just as important, what they did wrong… Read More

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How to Create a Viral Book Trailer (or Get 1,000,000 Views for Almost Anything)

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How do you create a viral video?

I am asked this quite a lot. I’ve been asked by authors, TV producers, and first-time Kickstarter entrepreneurs. In my experience, the answers are the same for all of them.

In this post, I’ll deconstruct one example: The 4-Hour Chef (4HC) book trailer, which is now the most-viewed non-fiction book trailer of all time. Roughly 1.5 million views and counting.

Before we dig in…

First, let’s make a distinction: creating a “viral” video is not the same a creating a “popular” video, but both can be valuable.

If you use ads to drive 1,000,000+ views, a video is not viral; it is popular. If your views come from organic sharing (or incentivized sharing like DropBox), it can be considered viral.

This post is also intended as a companion to my post, Behind the Scenes: How to Make a Movie Trailer for Your Product (or Book), which goes into equipment, planning, and (tons of) other details that I’ve omitted here.

For later — below are resources that will save you a TON of time and tail-chasing… Read More

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How to (Really) Make $1,000,000 Selling E-Books – Real-World Case Studies

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Who will be the JK Rowling of self-publishing? Better still: who will be the legions who make an extra $1,000-$1,000,000 per year? (Photo: The Telegraph, UK)

This is a guest post by Ryan Buckley and the team at Scripted. I have added my own tools and recommendations after “TIM” throughout the piece.

Enter Ryan Buckley and Team

Barry Eisler writes thrillers about a half-Japanese, half-American freelance assassin named John Rain. John Rain is the consummate anti-hero, a whiskey swilling, jazz-loving former CIA agent battling crippling paranoia as he adventures around the globe. Readers love John Rain, so much so that they’ve landed Barry Eisler and seven of his John Rain books on the New York Times Bestseller list. [TIM: Here's how the different bestseller lists work.]

Having conquered all that needs to be conquered in the world of commercial publishing, it shouldn’t come as a surprise that Eisler’s publisher offered him $500,000 deal for a new two-book deal.

The surprise was that Eisler turned down the deal and decided to tackle self-publishing instead.  In a freewheeling discussion with self-publishing expert Joe Konrath, Eisler says:

“I know it’ll seem crazy to a lot of people, but based on what’s happening in the industry, and based on the kind of experience writers like you are having in self-publishing, I think I can do better in the long term on my own.”

We asked Eisler for a current update, and he told us that this month (March 2013), he expects to sell 8,000 copies of his 10 self-published novels and stories, which are priced $1-5 each. Despite self-publishing his first story only two years ago, it appears he’s made the right decision. With roughly $300,000 in royalties per year, he already beat his publisher’s offer… Read More

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How to Get The 4-Hour Chef Audiobook Free — Only Until 10am PST (1pm EST)

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Gilbert Gottfried reads 50 Shades of Grey. NSFW.

PLEASE NOTE THAT THIS OFFER HAS EXPIRED — THANKS!

Many of you have been asking me for the audiobook version of The 4-Hour Chef. Now that I control the rights, I’d like to offer it to you… for free.

The offer is at the end of this post, but first…

Who should join me?

I’ll record a lot myself, but I’d like to involve other voice actors for small bits and pieces.

Who would you vote for? Here are some of my favorites. If you like any other them, please Tweet at them using the following format:

“Request! @[insert name] Please narrate a piece of The 4-Hour Chef audiobook! http://amzn.to/LQjLlm @tferriss is a fan.”

For instance:

“Request! @SamuelLJackson Please narrate a piece of The 4-Hour Chef audiobook! http://amzn.to/LQjLlm @tferriss is a fan.”

Here are a few I think would be incredible, even for just a few lines:

- Samuel L. Jackson – @SamuelLJackson
– Patton Oswalt (played “Remy” in Ratatouille) – @PattonOswalt
– Ben Stiller – @RedHourBen
– Morgan Freeman – I’m unsure which Twitter account is real, if any.
– Chuck Norris – Not on Twitter?
– Tony Robbins – @TonyRobbins
– Neil Gaiman – @NeilHimself
– Brad Garrett (played “Gusteau” in Ratatouille) – Not on Twitter?

Who am I missing? Any requests?

The Offer

Here’s the offer, good only until tomorrow (Saturday) at 10AM PST (1pm EST):

- Buy one (1) hardcover copy of The 4-Hour Body (BODY) and fill out this form. You’re all set.

- Or… if you buy three (3) hardcover copies of The 4-Hour Body (BODY), you’ll get both the audiobook for free and my $299 CreativeLIVE course described here for free. Just purchase the 3 books on Amazon and fill out this form.

- Give extra books to close friends and family who can use them. Challenge them to join the current DietBet.

NOTE: If you already bought three books this week through the last promo, you’re automatically getting the audiobook :) Otherwise, alas, only new orders count.

What will it be like?

I’ve never had a chance to make an audiobook myself and intend to make this one VERY fun and unusual. It will necessarily omit the recipes and be abridged, but there’s a lot of room for creativity.

Completing it could take a few months, but it will be well worth it. If you buy The 4-Hour Body with this promotion, you’ll get the audiobook (free) at least a month before anyone else.

If I think up more cool opportunities, you’ll be the first people to hear about it.

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