20 June 2013 ~ 2 Comments

The Six Figure Difference

Like many people who enter our market, I was very eager and excited to get started.  I did have some experience already with my business I [was trying to] created and doing online advertising using things like Google, Y! Marketing (when it existed) and Social Media Marketing – I had a few clients and felt pretty decently about my ability.  After I lost my job in December of ’09 and wrapped up a 6 month job search only receiving 1 interview (which lead to a job offer…. working 8 hours a week) I quickly realized that the traditional get a job go to work every day thing just simply was no longer an option and decided there was no better time than to take this business I was trying to create to the next level. I discovered Traffic Exchanges as I was looking for non-traditional ways to advertise my business.  I started out promoting an opt-in page for a splash page creation service – as there was an obvious need for graphic designers, and my major was Multimedia Design in college, I thought it was a clear market demand I could fill.

After not getting a client for about a month I started looking around more and discovered that the pricing of what was the going rate for Graphic Designers locally, was way beyond the realm of what my audience was asking for, and there was simply no way I could compete with everyone outsourcing graphics to India and other places where people were doing full website designs for $25-$50.  It was only a matter of time before I got sucked into a get rich quick scheme – and although I did make some pretty good money off of it, I never made that $13,000,000 I was promised on the sales page.

I launched a couple of small sites after that, first being The L Team which was a team website I created for The site I was using, and after that I created the original Affiliate Toolbox (not the version that exists today). After using Traffic Exchanges I thought that to be the obvious  next step, and knowing far too little about the market – launched Traffic Swirl.

Traffic Swirl went well, or at least I thought it was good – It went for about a year and a half of 10 member a day joining, 30k hits delivered a day, I thought I had good activity but looking back, it was nothing.  My programming skills got better and there was a massive market for programmers so I started programming for other people, essentially parting out my site, reselling the things that made it unique..

Something I realized after programming mods and working on just over 100 different Traffic Exchanges, was that every key feature that people loved about Traffic Swirl, was now spread all over the internet.

I stopped programming for other people, though my mods continued to get resold by former clients, even to this day people are reselling my work from 2 years ago, some of the rigths of which I have even sold to LFM who sell some of my mods on their official website – but the point is – the site was not mine anymore, it was a collection of random features that now everybody else had.

How I went from earning $25,000 a year with my internet business, to over $100,000 a year from my business happened almost overnight.

I said “To hell with it!”

I had been running my business in a market I wasn’t entirely familiar with, and was just sort of following the stream and trying to stay on the front end of trends – and one day I decided, screw it.. I’m going to do it my way.  I got sick of doing things just because I thought they should be done, and decided to take the chances and try things out.  When something was always done one way instead of doing it that way, I decided to dig deeper, “Why is it done that way?”  and begin to test alternatives – that very first month I doubled my sales and signups.

It isn’t some formula, some training package, there’s no sales page or product to buy – it’s something you already have.

It’s you.

If you truly want your business to succeed – the biggest “secret” is to stop listening to what people tell you to do – and start doing things.

 

 

So what’s my secret weapon?  It’s me.

You are the biggest resource and tool you have in your business – if you are not at the level you want to be, and are going to the LFMTE conference every month and buying the latest mod for your site…. well there’s your problem.

Are you trying to build the same site everyone else has? Or are you trying to build YOUR site?

Sure some mods are great, but if you have the same features as every other site, why should I even join yours?  How will I even remember yours exists when there is nothing different about it?

All it takes, is being you, and putting you into it.  The entire foundation of the success of my business is thinking ‘You know what would be kind of cool?’  and then putting it into action.

Don’t get me wrong, new features and increased functionality (value) are excellent, but not when it is the same stuff going in to every site…

People talk about Traffic Exchanges being full of freebie seekers and people who don’t want to pay for things, but I have found the opposite to be true, there are tens if not hundreds of thousands of people waving their wallets in the air just begging, searching everywhere for a site that is worth spending their advertising dollars on, I know because I’m one of those people.

But when you present a site that is just a clone of the last 10 sites they were at, but with different colors – what’s the point? Why waste my time? I already know what the site has to offer because I’ve already been to a dozen that were the exact same.

 

It’s all a matter of perspective, Derek Sivers talks about in a video — he says “What’s obvious to you is amazing to someone else” and that is something that couldn’t be more true.   My biggest success’ in my business have been things that I thought were obvious, no big deal, just another day at the office.. but then I get members who praise it and say holy cow I can’t believe what a great idea that is, and to me it was just something I thought a couple of people might like.

 

What’s the difference between me running a six figure business, and you who are struggling to make a profit?  I took that step.  I said let’s try it.  That’s it.

It doesn’t matter how silly or seemingly obvious it is, if you have an idea — take action on it.  “Put it out and let the world decide” (Sivers)

The most important thing to understand is that when you put YOU into it, You literally CAN NOT fail.  People LOVE to see you trying new things, even if it’s a major flop, you will be building some very loyal fans who are so happy just to see you trying something new, that they’ll forget whether or not it actually was successful, and if it is NOT successful, that just simply means you know another way that doesn’t work, and knowing which ways don’t work are the secret sauce to discovering which ways do.

So if you are a business owner, my only request for you is that the next random Idea you get for your business — do it, take action – regardless of how little or big, silly or serious, obvious or amazing – just do it.  There’s a massive market out there waiting for you to take that step, so take it, no matter how obvious or dumb the idea seems.

 

“Things that seem obvious to you, are amazing to others.  Are you holding back something that seems to obvious to share?” – Sivers

 

So what’s the secret to running a six figure business?  Just be you – do it your way, do what feels right, and ignore everyone else.

 

 

Referance Video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xcmI5SSQLmE

Continue Reading

21 July 2012 ~ 2 Comments

The Get in First Mentality

As someone who is fully immersed in the culture of online advertising and internet marketing, one thing that still surprises me is the “Get in First” mentality, people who truly believe that if they don’t join a site or start advertising it right away, that they will be missing out on something.

Even successful, long term, professional marketers find themselves favoring new websites, services, and products vs ones that have had a long lasted life.  The marketers who are creating these sites are custom tailoring their sales pages to synergize with your deep animal nature thought that things are limited.  The scarcity effect.  We have been programmed to believe things exist only in limited quantities.  You remember the last time you had a birthday party in your work place?  Carefully eyeballing the cake they purchased imagining how many slices it can make, and getting your place in line accordingly.   Well the same “lesson” follows us to the internet, but the internet is not a birthday cake.  There is no limit on websites, no limit on visitors, no limit on the size and scope of your market.

People believe and demonstrate every day a true belief that there is a limited amount of people to refer to their company or sale their product or service to.  They need to “Get in Early” so they can scoop up the good referrals before everyone else gets them all.  People legitimately believe this, and a huge market is created around just hype, building things up, using scarcity and other hot button marketing techniques to convince the end user that they really do need to sign up right now and make a purchase and promote right now, or they will lose out on something, referrals, commissions, could be anything really.  The theory supporting this and allowing us to rationalize this sales tactic is that there are a limited amount of people in the market, a limited amount of buying power, and a limited amount of time – people are react quickly and carelessly because they feel like if they don’t, someone else will.

Well the fact is, you both can.  That website is never going to say “Oh we have too many people, we’re making too much money, we can’t have any more new members”  That will never happen, the product will still be there for you, and you will still be able to promote it (assuming of course it isn’t a scam and the owner closes it down randomly (or the gov’t does – be careful what you sign up for!)).

What you are telling me when you say oh get in now, get in while it’s hot, it’s in prelaunch sign up now, get in quick, etc.  What you’re telling me is that somehow you’ve been in business all this time yet think there is a finite amount of customers.

Is there a limited amount of buyers?

If you used a billboard on the same spot of I-206 for fifteen years, then yes, maybe there are a limited amount of people who drive that route, if that’s the only way a person would know about your business.  Even though that’s not a limited amount of consumers, that’s just your own limit in your ability to reach them.  For the sake of argument we’ll say yes, that’s a limited amount of buyers, but this is really the only situation where that is so, because 92% of adult internet users use search engines, so weather you want them to or not, people can still find the site and make a purchase.

On the internet, there is no limited amount of buyers.  32% of the world’s population regularly uses the internet.  That’s over 2 Billion people, so unless you have 2 billion unique members in the site you are promoting, you have a hell of a lot more potential customers out there.  But even with this argument, we can say it is finite at 2.2 billion.  However still that is not the case.

Each day about 358,000 people are born.  32% of them will go on to use the internet, and 88% of that will make purchases online.  That’s 917 potential customers born every day.  You know how they say a sucker is born every minute? Well so is a potential customer.

So is there a limited amount of consumers?  Do you really need to get in first to get the most sales?  Absolutely not, and to think so is rather foolish wouldn’t you think?  Even a site with 3 million members, hasn’t even scratched the surface, and unless almost 1,000 people are joining EVERY day, they’re getting farther and farther behind.  You will NEVER run out of consumers to purchase your product or service, the only thing that may diminish, is your dedication to the product or service.  Stay focused, stay committed – if you believe in the product, you WILL sell it, regardless of how old or new it is.

Continue Reading