The Challenge 2013 Review Final Week

The Challenge Review Week 4

The Challenge 2013 Final Review

It’s the final stretch of the Challenge 2013, and I have just 8 days to go to complete the program.

If you read my week 3 post you will no doubt know I did feel a little bit deflated and was left thinking… what’s with all the upsells and how on earth a newcomer was going to get their head around traffic generation and building a WordPress website in a couple of days?

I was pretty sure that getting traffic to our ebook would be a giant chunk of the final weeks agenda. I didn’t want the Challenge 2013 to be so incomplete, so lets see if it delivered in the final week.

Day 22-30

Day 22 of the Challenge 2013 started off by introducing us to list building and how you can benefit from sending emails out to your subscribers. This can be a very profitable way to promote ANY product to a list of interested subscribers, and for me it’s not something that you can learn quickly.

We then moved on to creating a blog post within WordPress and how to add value to our content. One important suggestion was to engage on social platforms and even try podcasting.

Day 23 follows on very neatly from day 22 as the team takes us through the list building process with Aweber forms creation. How to build a website and landing page with WordPress was also covered in more detail, and again, this is something that requires time and understanding.

Day 24 in the Challenge 2013 brings you back to focus on your ebook cover design, and I have to say that the information is great.

I got a reinforcement of associating image, product and big titles, but I have to say…the most enjoyable bit was the free tool from Kindle to create covers.

The product titles and proof reading videos do have some great information and it’s worth a listen if you’ve never considered writing a Kindle ebook. A great tip I picked up when proof reading was to simply print out a copy to read…a great idea I never thought of!

Day 25 is a day dedicated to exporting to your product to Kindle. You get a walkthrough of the exporting process for both Scrivener and also the Kindle Comic Creator, plus you also get to learn how to use Amazon Publishing and KDP to get your final product live on the store.

Day 26 Had lots of info you can use to speed up your knowledge of tracking your rankings and using KDP reporting. Day 27 was filled with tracking Aweber, Facebook and the short link data.

Then it’s day 28…a day of rest day, and with day 29 ahead I’m finally on the last 2 days of the Challenge 2013.

Amazon Author CentralThe lesson on day 29 is a 10 minute video on Amazon Author Central, and I have to say that this also looks very cool. It has some great edit options which assist you in getting around the 48 hr review process.

The Final Day Of The Challenge 2013

It’s day 30, and the first video I get to see is almost 20 mins of Ed Dale saying that he suspects the Challenge hasn’t been going that well!

But he does offer a solution …’The Edge’ – his $97 a month upsell. In the 2 mins advanced video Ed says that The Edge is a stepping stone for those who have successfully completed the Challenge 2013.

The Challenge 2013 – Final Week Summary

This final week was great for understanding the analytics side of things within 3 of the 8 days training, plus a day each dedicated to product design, list building, social media connecting and getting the ebook ready to launch. The final day was a pat on the back followed by an upsell for the ‘advanced’ $97 per month membership site that Ed Dale runs.

There’s a only sprinkling of the essentials of getting traffic to your ebook, which I hoped would make up the core of the training. My cynical subconsciousness says that the more you understand how much traffic you are “not” getting, the more you’ll want to jump onto the advanced course Ed’s offering!

Let’s not be too harsh here though because bottom line is an ebook for Kindle has been created and anyone that knows their way around online marketing will get along with this course .

However, newbies to the online marketing world will be thinking that they need more! That quote from Ed Dale’s 20 min pep talk on day 30 is still ringing in my ears:

He “suspects that the Challenge hasn’t been going that well”

That’s because, in my opinion, it’s a good course that gives a detailed enough overview of how to create and publish on Kindle IF you have a grasp of many other fundamental online skills.

However, the marketing of your ebook is only skimmed and I presume that’s the “neat” of Ed Dale’s ‘The Edge’ membership site.

There has continued to be email upsells and invitation to webcasts that no doubt also contain the upsell. But I won’t put myself through that… not even for you guys!

Pro’s for the final week

  • There’s a reward tab appeared at the start of the week that has 4 . 2 huge graphics packs with sales headlines and page templates for you to manipulate and customise – if you know how to.
  • More Cool Kindle tools introduced, Author Central, and more on KC2 and KDP (Kindle Comic Creator and Kindle Direct Publishing)

Con’s for the final week

  • I still think the tasks are unbalanced and impact the overall structure of the Challenge.
  • The wrong info was covered this week – analytics should have been one of the “1 day” sessions.
  • Not enough emphasis put on getting your ebook in front of your target market.
  • Left feeling…what next? Which leads to…
  • The whole exercise now feels completely like a 30 day pre-sell to hook newcomers into trying Ed’s ‘The Edge’ upsell at $97 per month.

Final Challenge Thoughts…

Overall the Challenge 2013 was a worthwhile experience, but ultimately the action takers who make it through the training will no doubt feel they now have to part with $97 per month to learn how to share their ebook with the world by driving targeted traffic to it.

This part of the process does not need to cost $97 per month to learn, but I do understand that it is a very clever bit of marketing by Ed Dale and the Challenge team.

My only fear is, paying the $97 per month is likely to lead to further upsells down the line, which I’m sure many people in that position will find hard to resist.

Have you been “Challenged”? If so I would love to hear your thoughts in the comment section below.

Tony – WFHW

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Nick - April 5, 2014 Reply

Thanks for a detailed review, Tony, and well done for completing the challenge 2013. I’ve been a follower of the challenge process since 2012, when I went through my first one. I learnt a great deal, and it got me started on the right footing.

I have to agree that the Challenge 2013 was lacking something. The energy from previous challenges was not quite there for me, and the community had more experts than collaborators, so it was harder to feel supported.

Nevertheless, a superb learning experience, because the challenge team tries to tackle a different aspect of content marketing than just niche websites. Frankly, I don’t think beginners will be able to follow through with all the activities, which maybe explains why it was left open for an extra 30 days?

I would still recommend Ed Dale’s 30 Day Challenge to internet marketing newcomers. The information is definitely worth it, although one gets the feeling that there’s so much more to learn before being able to make 1 dollar from the program.

Great post!

    Marcus - April 8, 2014 Reply

    Thanks for taking the time to reply in detail, Nick, I really appreciate it!

    Totally agree that the 30 Day Challenge offers a great introduction to Internet marketing, and Ed Dale has always been someone that we have a lot of respect for.

    Tony really enjoyed the whole experience this year, and I was pleased with his detailed overview. The main issue that we had, and this is purely for the benefit of our visitors, is that the upsells are almost impossible to ignore and they can be expensive.

    That said, it’s a respected program that covers one way to make money online in just about enough detail before you start paying.

    Thanks again Nick…I really appreciate your input :-)



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