If you’re someone who believes not having perfect speaking and writing skills is an obstacle which keeps them from list building success, Igor’s going to turn your world upside down.
You’re going to discover how Igor, a Ukrainian who immigrated to Israel when he was 12, climbed up up the ranks of internet marketing to become in-demand consultant and copywriter with “broken” English.
You’ll also discover why
Plus… Igor reveals how to turn your “accent” into a sales tool.
This program is brought to you by thepodcastfactory.com.
Jonathan: You’re listening to The List-Building Lifestyle. I have with me Igor Kheifets. And today we’re talking about something a little bit different. What do you have in store for us, Igor?
Igor: Well, today I want to talk about the folks who get into the whole make-money-online business, but they’re not English-speakers, you know, the people who come out of the far corners of Europe or like me out of Israel, or maybe they live in Africa, or maybe, you know, they just live in South America and they speak some English, but not well – so all the people that you wouldn’t consider a native English-speaker, Jonathan.
Jonathan: So you don’t need English to sell to English people? Is that right?
Jonathan: Is that what you’re telling me?
Igor: Well, of course, you need to speak some English to sell, but I think a lot of people take it to a level where they let it be an obstacle and an excuse as to why they can’t make money with list-building and email marketing, because they say ‘Look, I don’t know English well, therefore I can’t write an email, therefore I can’t build a list.’
And I often get, you know, back in my coaching days when I used to do aggressive coaching on the Warrior Forum where I got my big start, a place I’m really grateful for, but, man, it’s full of just excuse-makers, you know, and I got so many private messages about my coaching program, people asking ‘Hey, can I still do this if I don’t speak English well?’ And the guy writes to me like a 400-word email, which is written perfectly fine. In fact, it’s written better than most Americans would write it, because…
You know, I get a lot of emails from folks in America and folks in England, and just English-speakers who can’t spell to save their life. You’d be surprised. I mean, you can use an autocorrect in your iPhone or an Android phone. You have that thing in Chrome you have that thing in Safari. You have software like Microsoft Word tell you if the word is spelled correctly or not. Man, you can just Google a word and Google will tell you if it’s spelled right. And still I see people can’t string two words together in a way that is clear and easy to understand.
Which brings me to my next point, Jonathan – it is not about the fancy words. Like a lot of people for some reason believe that making money with email marketing and sending out emails, you’ve got to have to like say lots of fancy, you know, $10-words to impress people for some reason, and probably because they’re just used to seeing all this flashy bright shiny object copy, I believe.
But the reality of it is you will only sell with your emails to an extent that you’re able to deliver a simple [03.00] and clear message in a very, very simple and easy-to-understand way. Wouldn’t you agree, Jonathan?
Jonathan: Yeah, actually that’s one of the things that makes for powerful communication. We talk about it here a lot. We talk about that at The Podcast Factory a lot. But it’s just being able to communicate at the level of a sixth grader. And so if you can break things down to that kind of simplicity, then you really know what you’re talking about.
Igor: Exactly. Another thing, you have to understand that if you’re feeling self-conscious about the way you communicate in English whether you’re feeling self-conscious, you know, shooting a YouTube video for your list. Right?
That’s a really good strategy you can do a lot of great things with with just a simple, 2 or 3-minute video on YouTube, but I know a lot of people, they’re just…they have great things to say, but they’re really just afraid to get in front of the camera because they’re just self-conscious of how they look and how they sound.
And I used to have the exact same problem. That’s why I believe I’m full of fire to talk about.
In fact, if you Google my name ‘Igor Kheifets’- that’s ‘K-H-E-I-F-E-T-S’ – you’ll probably stumble into a video of mine from like 2009 where I was trying to promote some sort of a MLM, because that’s where I got my start. I was promoting business opportunities unsuccessfully and really poorly.
And so if you Google me I’m sure you’ll find those videos where I just sound like an idiot, but even with that that was a really important step in my online career because I got the balls to get on camera while my competitors did not have the balls to do it.
And so what allowed me to create is it just gave me more self-confidence. I had people complimenting me and, believe it or not, I had a lot of people who were in the same situation reach out to me. They were like ‘Hey, I see you’re not a native English-speaker, but I see your video and I’m, man, I’m so jealous of you and I believe that you’ve done a great thing, because I too want to do this, but I’m just afraid because my English isn’t perfect like yours.’ And at the time I was like feeling so self-conscious…
Igor: …About my English. Yeah, you’d be surprised that, you know, I’m going to say it, I’m not sure if you’re going to believe me, but hey, you’re not special. You’re not that special. A big chuck of our…
Igor: A big chunk of our customers today in the Igor Solo Adds, you know, they’re like 45 up to 50% non-native English-speakers and they seek me out a lot of times because, you know, my name is obviously Russian, Igor, done, you can’t be, it’s petty obvious, so I stand out like a sore thumb probably even between all my competitors.
Igor: So they seek me out, because they see me as not being a native English-speaker, and they’re like ‘Ok, so this guy probably gets me,’ and so they find me.
Now what this tells you, my friend listening to this, is that you’ll actually attract the people who can resonate with you. Right? I mean, you’ll attract people who can mirror themselves upon you, because one of the things purchase, one of the things we [06.00] buy when we make a purchase of any kind is we buy an improved version of ourselves. So if we buy a make-money-online product, we’re actually seeing a clear mental movie, maybe just a short movie, maybe like a 30-second movie, because the attention spans today are critically…
Igor: Critically short. But, you know, it’s this little movie that depicts the picture of me making more money and having a better lifestyle and having more fulfilment in my life. So when I click the ‘Buy Now’ button on a $47 click bank system or whatever, you know, that’s what I see in my mind.
Now this in itself is a great selling tip for you guys listening, but what it tells you is that, you know, when they look at you and you’re standing tall with all your imperfections, right, they want to be more like you. They respect that. So don’t be afraid. Be proud of that stuff.
You know, it’s kind of like what I said to my business partner’s girlfriend, Anastia – so my business partner is Dennis Ray, and if you’ve ever bought a solo from me or if you’ve ever done business with me, you’ve probably spoken to him at one point or another.
And so he’s got his girlfriend. They’ve been together like 10 years or something. You know, she started doing some YouTube streaming ads thin it’s called, right, where people make money off streaming lots of content on YouTube and then getting paid for advertising, I believe – right, Jonathan?
Jonathan: Yeah, yeah, it’s amazing what you can do online.
Igor: Oh, yeah, for sure. I mean, the internet is just amazing.
And so she’s getting into it into the fitness market and, you know, she was really self-conscious about her accent, because her situation is really unique and I’m sure there’s plenty of people in a similar situation, but I just don’t know too many people like that.
So she was born in Israel, but she was born into a Russian family. Her family is from St. Petersburg, and she speaks English, she speaks Hebrew and also Russian. Now you can imagine that speaking three languages, they get mixed up a lot.
So she’s what you’d say extraordinary when it come sot communication because she speaks Russian, but when you speak to a real Russian from Russia you can tell that she’s different, right. He will be able to tell that she’s not a native. When she speaks Hebrew, she’s okay. She’s more of like a native, but she has a Russian appearance, so they know she’s not a native. And English, she has a cute little accent going on as well.
So starting the whole concept, starting the whole streaming business, she was extremely conscious and she’s probably one of the most, you know, she’s the kind of person that beats herself up a lot if you will, right. She’s really, really self-conscious about many different things, so it was although she’s very beautiful, she’s intelligent, she’s really smart – and I hope Dennis doesn’t listen to this episode, because he’s probably going to kill me – but, you know, I told her ‘Look, just be perfectly imperfect. Just take all your imperfections and bring the on camera.’ And what do you know, she’s getting more fan mail [09.00] than I do. Can you believe that?
Jonathan: Wow. Yeah, and that’s something our buddy, Ben Settle talks about is just be yourself, warts and all, because it will resonate with people who have similar backgrounds, similar hang-ups, similar problems.
Igor: Yeah, yeah, yeah…and which is a great tip. We can take it one step further and say this. In copywriting when we produce content in media to sell something, usually when you’re starting, when you get started with that stuff, you believe that’s like same as standing in front of a stadium full of people, right, and trying to influence a mass, a huge chuck of people, I guess, hundreds of thousands of people that you want to sell something to.
So if your list is like 20,000 people, you’re like ‘Oh, what do I say to 20,000 people? They’re listening to me. They all expect something from me.’
But the reality of it is you need to really trim down your perfect prospect. You really trim down your perfect ideal market, and that will allow you to sell more.
So instead of trying to sell to a huge crowd of 20,000 people, why don’t you write an email to a 38-year-old confused and frustrated, I don’t know, factory worker who wants to break away from the rat race, whose wife lost passion for her husband because he, you know, he doesn’t provide well and whose kids hate him. Like write to that guy, and you’d be surprised just how high of a response your email is going to get.
Jonathan: Yeah, being direct, targeted and speaking to one customer or one prospect.
Igor: It is way more effective, Jonathan.
Jonathan: No kidding. That’s why you and I are working together. I spoke to you somehow through whatever I put out there.
Igor: Yeah, exactly. I mean, you…when I first discovered you when I was listening to Ben Settle’s podcast, the Antipreneur show and I was then I picked up, because of you, I picked up Doberman Dan’s podcast because it just comes up related, right, and so when I heard you feeding back to these guys with what they were talking about, I was like ‘Damn, dude! This dude gets marketing!’ And, you know, I’m the kind of person that makes buying decisions based on how well the person sells.
I’ll give an example, like me and my wife, we had a baby 3 years ago and, you know, if you’re married, you probably know this and get kids that a woman, you know, what happens to a woman when she has a baby is sort of like she gets hit by a truck and you now have to put her together from scratch. And so my wife, you know, she was made to have babies but, you know, her breasts were not, and so we wanted to get them fixed, and so we went to 3 different clinics.
You know which one I went with? Which also happens to be, well, the most expensive one? But regardless of the price, which I was willing to pay, I went with the clinic that sold the best that followed all the old-school proper techniques of selling, such as asking lots of questions, letting the prospect [12.00] do more talking than the seller, having a proper buying environment, you know, really breaking down to a very simple set of steps as to how the procedure’s going to work, like, these guys did everything right.
On the other hand, the first two clinics we went to, they just dropped the ball every step of the way, like immediately I felt that that was the wrong place to be in.
Jonathan: Interesting. I remember hearing that tory. So you don’t need to be that good though at speaking English to be able to sell, do you?
Igor: Oh, no, no, no…I mean, selling – and I’m going to just kind of let the secret out – selling really comes down to a set of techniques and principles that you need to follow and not so much a language.
You know as we mentioned earlier in this show, it’s not about the fancy words that you’re using. It’s about the timing in which you used the words as well as the understanding that you have with your marketplace.
So, you know, a couple of years ago I used to sell $15,000 coaching packages, and at the time my English, I mean, it was worse than it is right now because, you know, obviously you improve at everything with practice, so I oftentimes found myself stuttering on the phone and I oftentimes found myself losing words and losing track of words.
In fact, I remember quite a few times when I just stopped the call, I just said, ‘Hey’ – yeah, let’ say, Jonathan that I was talking to – ‘Hey, Jonathan, can you hold on for just a sec? I wanted to say this word, but I forgot what it is, like I forgot how to say in English. I’m going to just Google translate real quick, okay?’
Igor: Yeah, I did that. I kid you not.
Igor: And it closed the $15,000 sale.
Igor: Because I wasn’t trying to pretend to be something I’m not. That’s what I’m trying to tell you.
Jonathan: Yeah, yeah, that’s right. People can relate to that genuineness and then that actually, that’s ‘the warts and all,’ because then they can say ‘Yeah, this person’s for real. I can trust what they say, because he’s got to get off the phone and look up words.’
Igor: Yeah, exactly. And, you know, when you’re real and people can sense that you’re real, they have no reason not to trust you and when they trust you, you can say very simple, very short, very straightforward words and they lend.
You know, you can use all the fancy words you want, but of the prospect does not trust you, if the prospect doesn’t feel you, if the prospect doesn’t really feel that everything you’re doing comes from a place of truth and integrity, then, you know, your words won’t help you. He will still not buy from you, or she, you know.
Jonathan: A lot of times those fancy words, and this might just be my thinking, but I feel like those fancy words kind of alienate you and make you look like maybe you’re trying to hide something, because why do you need a complicated $10-word when a $0.25-word will do the trick?
Igor: Exactly, but again, a lot of it comes from the misconceptions that people have bene taught about how to sell online, how to write great emails.
I mean, if anything, you guys should all follow Ben Settle who writes really simple, fairly short – I mean, I can’t remember Ben sending out an email longer than 350-500 words in the last 30 days, and I pretty much [15.00] read, you know, Ben’s emails every day.
And so if you follow Ben, just get on his list that I will – what is it? bensettle.com [ben Settle dot come]?
Igor: bensettle.com [Ben Settle dot com] and get on the podcast as well, bensettleshow.com [Ben Settle Show dot com], you’ll see that the guy write like he talks and he talks in very simple, like you said., $0.15-words, and you can’t help but fall in love with the dude because of his, you know, belief systems and the way he delivers the content in a very entertaining and <15.27.4> way.
Jonathan: Yeah, yeah, and that guy dispels some myths like you did in episode number 1 about what email marketing is and isn’t.
Igor: Anyway, just get on the podcast dammit! Just go to bensettleshow.com and listen to the podcast. You’d be a better email marketer as a result regardless whether you speak English, Chinese, you know, Spanish, Hebrew, I don’t…I don’t really care. You can make a great living regardless of where you were born or how many languages you speak.
Jonathan: Yeah, man, so keeping communication is the key, using smaller words, getting to the point and being honest.
Anymore tips you can give our non-native English-speaking listeners?
Igor: Oh, yeah, for sure. This is a trick that worked well for me and here’s what I do.
Usually I would write in either Russian or Hebrew – usually, Russian. Russian is closer to me – and then I would just translate it into English. And so oftentimes when I find myself not being able to write a good email in English, I would do that, you know, I would just revert back to the same pattern. I would just write it in Russian, in my, you know, mother tongue, in my first language, and when I do it, it’s pretty easy to translate it into English, because of all the tools you’ve got.
You’ve got the Google Translate tool. You’ve got the Thesaurus tool. You’ve got… I like this, the website, wordhippo.com [word hippo dot com] – that’s W-O-R-D-H-I-P-P-O dot com – extremely useful website. I use it all the time even today.
And also you’ll learn a lot just by reading a lot. So pick up some fiction books in English. You know, read Ben Settle’s emails. Read Doberman Dan’s emails. Read my emails. You’ll quickly pick up on a pretty decent vocabulary of words you can be using to sell your stuff.
Jonathan: So I want to go back to something that you just touched on slightly, because I think it’s super useful. You said that you don’t need words to sell necessary. You just need a process. So can you talk a little bit about that process just as we’re wrapping up here?
Igor: Oh, absolutely. It’s the same process that I would follow whenever I’m creating a new offer. The first things first is your target prospect. Who is that person? And again, just like we shared you want to go deep and you want to nail down one individual, and when you nail that individual down.
You also want to get like a stock photo and put it on the wall and look at that guy or gal when you write and imagine you’re just having a conversation with that person, just a down-to-earth [18.00.4] conversation over a cup of coffee. If you can do that, you’ll sell.
Also of course you have to believe in what you’re selling, because if you don’t there’s no going to be a very productive conversation happening, but if you do believe and you can sit down have just a proper one-on-one conversation and be real with that person, you’re going to do just fine.
Now as far as the strategy is on how to do that, you should just ask yourself a couple of questions. You know –
What are the 3 top daily frustrations that my target, ideal prospect has?
What are the top 3 desires that my ideal prospect has?
What are some of the concerns or reason why my prospect doesn’t believe he can do or achieve whatever it is that he’s trying to achieve?
And similar questions to that getting deeper into his psyche, not so much into your product, because selling, you know, selling is not about the products. It’s about the people. Okay?
Now, if you’re wondering how you can get that information, the fastest way is to see what these people are buying. So go and look into your competitors’ materials if you know these competitors are making a lot of money.
Go on forums. So if you’re selling make-money-online stuff, go on the Warrior Forum, see what people are writing. I mean, you’ll be surprised to find out just how crazy it can get when an individual is left to his own devices trying to make money for home in a locked room in his parents’ basement or whatever. All kinds of crazy crap comes up, and you’ll be surprised because you’ll never guess.
It just…honestly, when I started out and when I was finally pointed into this direction as to go ahead and find out what they’re thinking about and find out what they’re worrying about, man, I discovered a whole new world of thoughts, ideas and misconceptions that people had and I attest a lot of my success to having that understanding with marketplace.
Jonathan: That’s it, man, that’s what I wanted you to hit a little bit more. It’s the idea of knowing your market is really where sales comes from, and being in your market and being a consumer in your market gives you an edge and an advantage, so love that you brought that up. So what do you have coming up for us next time?
Igor: Well, next time we’re going to be talking about probably the biggest secret to success and how 99.99% of people, you know, I see online are just missing it, and it’s like staring them right in the face and they still don’t see it. So I’ll just keep it at that.
Jonathan: The secret to success – you’re just going to leave it at that, okay! So that’s a wrap for The List-Building Lifestyle. This was episode 3. You don’t need to be a native English-speaker to make a living online, very encouraging stuff. Thank you, Igor. And thank you guys for tuning in.
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