My biggest marketing pet peeve - Trial and Eureka

My biggest marketing pet peeve

By Alp | List-building

Do you have any pet peeves?

Of course you do.

I should have asked, “Will you run out of fingers before you can count them all?”

Well, I’ll raise you one. I’m with Whoopi Goldberg on this:

I don’t have pet peeves like some people. I have whole kennels of irritation.

And my biggest, scariest, most menacing, snarling dog of a pet peeve?

People who do things without really understanding what they’re doing or why they’re doing it.

This happens all the time in business when a new fad sweeps across marketing.

But the real facepalm moment came when I saw the following story on Reddit.

So this guy gets a solidarity tattoo to match that on his rescue dog:

“[The dog] has a tattoo given to him from some previous owners. It sickens me to know that people actually tattoo their pets. So tonight I got his tattoo in solidarity.”

Oh. My. God.

Do your research before you do something permanent to your body (or business, for that matter).


That symbol means the dog is neutered.

So this guy now has a tattoo on him that says he, too, is neutered.

In some countries, it’s not just common practice, but in fact legally required for veterinarians to tattoo dogs after they’ve been neutered in order to prevent someone from trying to neuter them again in the future.

Before you laugh too hard, consider this:

Most online businesses walk around with “I just neutered my list” tattooed on their arm and wear that as a badge of honour.

The tattoo they’re wearing?


Here is the rationale most people have for getting the list segmentation tattoo in solidarity with their gurus:

“Hmm… I have a couple thousand subscribers on my list now, but they all want to hear about different things!

Some of them want advice on getting dates and some of them want advice on their marriage.

I know! I’ll SEGMENT them using all these crazy quiz funnels that I don’t really know how to build. While I’m at it, I should also upgrade to a more “professional” ESP like ActiveCampaign or InfusionSoft so I can use advanced automation logic. (Not sure I understand what that means, but I better not miss out.)

Then I can put my readers into these different, crisscrossing product funnels - one selling stuff on dating and one selling stuff on marriage. (Obviously, there’ll also be cross-sells and upsells because… surveys.)

Each funnel will outperform my sales conversion by 100%.

BANG! I’ve doubled my revenue.”

Alas, this is delusional.

First of all, there is a science to segmentation. It’s complex. It’s expensive. And very few people can map it out correctly.

(And no, tagging people as they come in is not “segmentation”.)

I know of what I speak because I actually own a marketing agency that does this for a living.

We charge $25,000 per funnel. So if you ask us to set up integrated segmentation across three different product funnels, that architecture is going to cost you $75,000.

Just mapping out the segmentation strategy is enough to give you a persistent headache for a week.

But then you also have to re-write three separate sales funnels and they all have be top notch.

And then you need to write a host of cross-sell and upsell sequences based on which links people are clicking.

Second, segmenting your list won’t always be profitable.

Ramit Sethi makes this interesting observation about the hidden perils of segmentation:

He points out that you end up creating several different products at corresponding prices. One market naturally spends way more money than the other market. So you end up with a 93/7 split.

In other words, 93% of your revenue is coming from ONE segment, but you still have to maintain two funnels. So you’re essentially doing 2x the work for LESS revenue.

Therefore Ramit recommends that people shouldn’t touch segmentation until they have at least 200,000 subscribers.

I definitely agree with him on the sentiment.

That said, I kinda disagree on the numbers.

Based on our hands-on experience at the agency, I’d say the actual numbers depend on the industry.

For example, food, household goods and hospital sectors benefit most from segmentation. Our clients in those industries start to see significant ROI from advanced segmentation once they have about 50,000 subscribers.

For hotels, on the other hand, I wouldn’t recommend segmentation until they have at least 250,000 subscribers.

Admittedly, there is no hard and fast rule here. The numbers I’m throwing around are based on the data we are seeing. Mileage might vary.

At the end of the day, I practice what I preach.

I own an agency that charges an arm and a leg for segmentation projects, yet I don’t segment my own list for my side-business, Trial & Eureka.


Because I have bigger fish to fry - and so do you.

Frankly, until you reach 100,000 subscribers, your biggest win will come from getting more traffic.

But before you dive into the traffic game, you need to make sure you can capture those visitors when they come in.

After all, you can’t build up a reservoir of buyers with a leaky bucket.

Here is the thing:

Traffic always takes a lot of time or a lot of money to generate.

Before you invest in traffic, make sure that your opt-in attracts the right visitors and efficiently converts them into subscribers.

For specialised help with opt-in offers, check out FAST50.

It will help you find the right bonus to offer as your opt-in (this is key), write high converting landing page copy, and create the lead magnet in a way that leaves prospects hungry to buy.

And when you’re ready to take your game to the next level, have me analyse your opt-in before you “tattoo” it to your website.

(You can get this feedback through group coaching in the Standard edition and a personal strategy session in the Complete edition.)