Some guy writing a newsletter on me a week ago sent me a copy of the article he wrote about my Cheeto Auction and wanted to share it with all of you. He asked me alot of questions but only used a couple of them. HOLY CHEETO SALESMAN SHARES HIS SECRETS! Although it can be hugely profitable, the eBay marketplace is a highly competitive community of merchants selling items that are often identical to each other in a marketplace that is designed to get the buyer, not the seller, the best possible price. The biggest question posed to aspiring eBay sellers, then, is how do you distinguish your product over your opposition's, given all these challenges? To answer that question, we spoke with Nang Duong, the ingenious young man who managed to turn a twisted-up Cheeto into $100 and a minor media firestorm! Keep in mind; at the time, in the wake of the $28,000 Virgin Mary Grilled Cheese Sandwich and $1,200 Dorito shaped like the Pope's hat, there was a glut on the snack food religious artifact market on eBay -- countless Virgin and Child, Jesus with Lamb, etc, cheetos weren't getting any bids at all! Yet, somehow, The Holy Cheeto - as Nang dubbed his cheesy snack that he said looked like the Legs of Jesus - got hundreds of watchers, a couple radio interviews, and was eventually bid up to $102.59 from a starting bid of just 99 cents! Believe it or not, it wasn't just luck! Here's how he says he did it: Q: What made you decide to sell the cheeto? Was it based on other things you had sold before or seen sold before? A: This was kind of a fundraiser for my church because they did a lot for me when I had [heart] surgery. People had been selling food items with images of either the Virgin Mary or Jesus on it, but my auction was different because it was a body part and I knew that was something you usually didn't see on Ebay. Q: Did you take any extra steps to generate so much interest in your auction, or was it just lucky chance? A: On each of my auctions, I use Microsoft Front Page. I am not very good with html codes but Front Page helps me produce those codes. Before having Front Page, my auctions were dull because I just had plain black text in my descriptions. Front page offers more options. I can change the color of the text, the font style, and the size of the text. Then I just copy and paste into my auction description. Another extra step I took was writing a press release using prweb.com and free-press-release.com and then including a link to it in my eBay auction. The press release gives the readers an idea of how you came across the item. I also used Auctionsightings.com. Andrew Fischer, the man who sold his forehead for $37,000, founded the site. I would highly recommend using that site because you can list your auction and ask other members for advice on how to promote or list yours. If you register at that site, put "dragon" as your referral. Q: Any other advice for aspiring eBay sellers? A: I would recommend that all eBay users take advantage of the extra services that eBay has to offer. Sure it may cost a little more, but it is worth it. For example, the picture gallery fee: it costs 35 cents to add a picture next to the title of your auction, but when people see that picture, they get curious and click on your auction to check it out! If your auction has pictures, it will get more hits. Another piece of advice I would give is to be creative, descriptive and honest in your auction description. Talk about how you came across the item, and be honest about what condition the item is in. If you say the item is brand new and it's really worn out, the bidder will not be too happy when they receive it and will leave you negative feedback. Also, try to make your auction humorous so that the readers will finish reading it!