UPDATE: This product is now outdated, and I do not recommend it any longer. I am leaving it here for informational purposes only. Additionally, I have removed the links from this article. Interestingly, a couple years after this launch, Kelly Felix (the guy behind Rich Jerk) came out publicly and admitted that he basically HAD been a rich jerk. He then launched a new site called Bring the Fresh, in which he takes a “real guy” approach to teaching SEO. To get the most up-to-date information and recommendations, please join my free newsletter.
Edition #117 – 3/18/2007
I’d say it’s about time that someone lifted the curtain on all this Rich Jerk X-ray Domination hoopla, and separated the facts from the hype.
The buzz surrounding this launch has steadily grown over the past couple weeks, and with less than 48 hours until launch time, I’m now receiving about a dozen emails per day about it. I can only imagine how many promotions we’ll be bombarded with on Tuesday.
There have also been several other factors and recent developments that have added some serious confusion to the issue. I’m going to address some of those things, and hopefully put things into the proper perspective for you.
Let’s start with the Rich Jerk himself. In case you haven’t figured it out yet, the Rich Jerk is really more of a brand name than a person. I might add that it’s a brilliant concept, and has become a powerful brand in our industry.
As you may have heard from other marketers, the guy behind the Rich Jerk (we’ll just call him RJ) is actually a pretty normal guy– and yeah– he really is making millions of dollars online. I’ve met him twice; last year in Vegas, and last month in New York. In fact we shared a limo ride down to Manhattan.
While I do think he’s got a good marketing concept, I don’t like the rudeness of his emails, and I’ve said so in a past edition of Eric’s Tips. It’s one thing to be edgy and sarcastic, but quite another to use foul language, and demean women and others– even if it is just a marketing tactic.
Had I not met the real RJ, I would probably not even be wasting these words on him now, but like I said he at least seems like a decent guy in real life.
Next let’s talk about the pre-launch marketing strategy that most of us have now seen employed for this launch.
Maybe you’ve seen some emails that say stuff like “Someone’s gonna get fired over this–“
They’re using the “leak” strategy, which has really become cliched in our industry over the past year or so. They started by releasing a video purported to be one of RJ’s employees logging in and spying on RJ’s AdWords account without him knowing it.
The bottom line is, I know my readers are smart, which is why I didn’t participate in those shenanigans. Anyone with half a brain can figure out that it’s an orchestrated pre-launch tactic.
And while I wouldn’t try to pull the wool over your eyes, I don’t think they’re trying to be “deceptive”. I see it as just a fun way of releasing pre-launch info. My mastermind group (the Secret Six) did something similar when we launched Product Launches Exposed last year.
We didn’t do it because we thought people would be “stupid enough to believe it”–we did it because we thought it would be a fun way to get people involved.
Anyway, if you’ve watched the prelaunch videos, you’ve heard a guy who goes by the name of “Ryan from the Rich Jerk.com”. Coincidentally, I’ve met Ryan too. He even showed me some cool “sleight of hand” magic tricks with his business card. If you ever meet him you should ask to see it.
I don’t want to sound like I’m trying to defend the Rich Jerk or his actions, I’m just trying to shed more light on the entire situation.
The next thing that has left a lot of people confused is the fact that RJ launched his new Rich Jerk Evolution website in such close proximity to the X-ray Domination launch.
In fact, I saw at least a couple of marketers who got their promotions wrapped around the spokes, so to speak. They actually confused the two launches. They thought they were promoting X-ray Domination, but the link was for Rich Jerk Evolution (or vice versa), which is a totally different thing.
Rich Jerk Evolution (aka Rich Jerk 2.0) is basically the new evolution of the original Rich Jerk ebook, formatted as a membership site with various types of content. I did take some time to check out the site, and I would say it’s got some valuable info. He’s got some good tips in there, like how he puts his banner ad all over MySpace without having to pay per impression. Along with that tidbit, there were several things I actually LEARNED from the member area, which made it worth it for me.
I didn’t take the time to promote it to you last week though, because I didn’t feel it was essential. Besides that, there were about 5 major launches going on (all of which I was invited to promote), and I decided you probably had enough promotions flooding your inbox. I hope you don’t mind that I decided not to contribute to the noise.
I still wouldn’t be devoting this much space to Rich Jerk Evolution, EXCEPT I just learned that Rich Jerk Evolution members will get a chance to purchase X-ray Domination a full hour before everyone else. And since they’re supposedly limiting it to 500 licenses, it could be a factor. I have no idea how quickly it will sell out (I don’t even know the price yet), but I figured I’d at least let you know.
OK, so we’ve cleared that up, now let’s talk about the X-ray Domination product itself, which is launching on March 20th at Noon eastern.
The idea is this: it is a tool to use in conjunction with your PPC (pay-per-click) campaigns which allows you to track the results on a per-keyword basis, even when you’re using an affiliate link.
If you’re using PPC to drive traffic to your OWN website, it’s easy to track the results on a per-keyword basis, simply by putting a small snippet of code on your thank-you page. Google Adwords, Yahoo Search Marketing, and most other PPC providers offer this ability.
But if you’re promoting products and services as an affiliate (such as ClickBank products, or Commission Junction), it is generally not possible to put YOUR tracking code on the thank-you page of the vendor’s site.
Fortunately, most affiliate program providers (such as Commission Junction), allow you to place a tracking variable in your affiliate link. ClickBank recently added that capability also. However, it is still a somewhat complex and rather tedious process to put all those moving pieces together into a system that will allow you to actually see which keywords are converting for you.
The X-ray Domination program gives you a tool that automates most of the process, and also includes extensive training materials that show you exactly how RJ uses this technique to make millions of dollars of affiliate commissions.
In case this all sounds familiar, maybe it’s because the concept is very similar to the Landing Page System, which I helped launch in January.
The X-Ray Domination system basically picks up where the Landing Page System left off. X-Ray Domination provides a smoother interface, much more training material, and the ability to import your stats directly from ClickBank, CJ, and LinkShare.
Just to let you in on a little secret, the X-Ray Domination program actually utilizes a technology that is not owned by RJ. The software itself was created by a programmer named Wes who has worked with me and Joel Comm before. In fact, I spoke with him on the phone this morning to make sure I had my facts straight for this newsletter.
The good news is that this programmer is top notch, and he and his team will be supporting the software.
The other good news is that I’ve been a beta tester for the program for the past several weeks, and I’m pleased to say that it lives up to its claims.
OK, so that’s what the product is all about– now let me clear up a couple more issues.
Today, a “clone” of the software was launched on a forum. I’m not going to mention it by name, because the owner of it was nice enough to give me a review copy. But I will say that the software itself is clearly inferior in my opinion, and the manner in which he launched it is really not ethical.
He is leeching off the X-ray Domination launch, by directly naming RJ’s product and saying that his does the “exact same thing”, when in fact it doesn’t. For one thing, the “clone” does not even have the ability to import your data from the affiliate program providers.
I don’t blame anyone for “leeching”, but he definitely crossed the line, and I know legal action is being taken against him (although I’d be doubtful it would have much impact due to the difficulty of prosecuting outside the US).
It’s interesting to see this happen though, as it’s similar to what we saw last month when Mike Filsaime’s VFG launch was sabotaged by other marketers. It used to be that the copycats would launch their products a week or two after the big launch. Now, they’ve gotten to the point where you can almost expect a copycat to be launched BEFORE the release of anything big from a guru.
It goes to prove a point. Whether you’re a guru or not, it’s probably best to keep your product a secret until the launch (especially if it’s something truly new).
Finally, let’s clear up one more potential misconception before we finish up.
You may have heard about another product launching this month called “HexaClick” (the product behind “The New PPC”).
I want to make it clear that HexaClick is NOT a clone of X-ray Domination. It serves a different purpose.
On a side note, HexaClick was originally slated to launch on March 15th, but has been delayed probably until late March or early April (I’ll let you know).
I met the developers of HexaClick, Amish and Larry, and they seemed to be nice guys. Perhaps the delay of their launch speaks of their ambition of perfection for their product. From a marketing standpoint, they definitely should have kept their original launch date which would have let them launch before X-ray Domination, and likely would have resulted in a larger market share of the PPC marketers in our industry.
Fortunately, their product is different enough that it shouldn’t hurt them too badly.
I’m ALSO a beta tester for HexaClick, and it’s an entirely different beast than X-ray Domination. I won’t get into all the details here (I’ll write a bit more about it when it launches), but I’ll give you the basics because it might help you decide whether X-ray Domination is the right tool for your business.
HexaClick is not designed to track affiliate links. It’s designed primarily to automate PPC marketing for campaigns in which you can directly track the results by placing the tracking code on your thank-you page.
But there’s a lot more to it than that. The server-based program actually interfaces directly with your PPC accounts (AdWords, Yahoo SM, etc).
More importantly, it can actually automate the bidding process. You simply tell the program what ROI you wish to achieve. It will then track the profitability of each keyword, and adjust the bids accordingly to match your ROI goal.
That’s huge, because it’s like having a virtual employee doing all the work to manage your PPC campaigns. There are actually a couple of programs that already offer this capability, but they are very expensive. I’ll talk more about it when I do my review of HexaClick.
So if you’re using PPC primarily for your OWN websites, HexaClick may be the best choice.
If you’re using PPC as an affiliate marketer, X-ray Domination is the best thing I’ve found so far.
Ultimately, someone WILL combine these two concepts and cater to people like me who use PPC for my own sites AND affiliate marketing.
But I’m not going to wait until that happens, because this is something that works NOW and there is money to be made TODAY.
I consider PPC marketing to be an integral part of my business. Last year I spent about $150,000 on clicks. I hope to increase that to $100,000 PER month by the end of this year.
You might be thinking, OK that’s easy for you to say Eric, but I don’t have $100,000 to spend on PPC.
When you understand how this business works you’ll understand why I have money to spend on clicks, and why you do too!
Let me put it this way– could you afford to put $1000 of clicks onto your credit card if you knew it would result in receiving $2000 of commission checks at the end of the month?
Could you afford to put $10,000 on your credit card if you knew it would result in $20,000 of commission?
Regardless of your credit situation, you would find a way to afford it. (Note: I’m NOT telling you to go out and run up a PPC tab on your credit card if you don’t know what you’re doing. You can also lose a lot of money in this game if you don’t do it right. So you should start small, and learn from experts.)
That’s how the game works. I’m going to keep playing the game, and if you want to join me, I recommend getting a tool such as X-ray Domination to help level the playing field.
As always, you are welcome to leave your comments here in the blog.
Have a great day!