Don't Play Follow The Leader
The Internet marketing machine is like a large information freight train running out of control, 99 miles an hour down a dead end street. There is so much information and misinformation it's getting harder and harder to tell the difference. To make things even more difficult to understand, what works and what doesn't work today is changing all the time.
The root of the problem is the marketing strategy that worked well six
months ago, may or may not work today. If an approach works for you it
may not necessarily work for me.
The newest cutting-edge marketing information is almost always stale by
the time it's published. In addition there is a time lag between
when a new marketing approach is conceived and when it goes mainstream.
Don't Do Exactly What Everyone Else Is Doing.
If you do what everyone else does, you will get what everyone else gets.
One reason Internet businesses fail is because there is nothing new or
interesting in their approach. In most markets there are more people
selling than people who are buying.
The Gold Rush Mentality
In the California Gold Rush of the 1850's many businesses earned more
money than the miners, by selling gold pans, transportation and supplies
to them. Many prospectors wasted their life savings on scams and
non-existent gold claims. I see the same things happening on-line
today. THE FIRST few people to stake a claim to a new market are the
ones making most of the money.
Adapt A Franchise Mentality
Have you ever wondered why a higher percentage of franchise owners are
successful? Here are three of the main reasons.
- The franchise owner is 100% committed. The costs are so high, that
commitment to success is absolute. Treat your sixty-dollar business
like a sixty thousand dollar business and you will be more likely to
- Treat your business like it is a business! Not like a hobby! A
franchise is researched carefully; detailed plans are required; nothing
is left to chance.
- The franchise owner expects to success to take time. Many Internet
Marketers expect success almost overnight.
The Saturated Market
Often people tell me they want to fashion their business after my
business. I try to discourage them because there is less and less money
to be made in an over-saturated market. In fact, selling marketing tools
and information products to beginning marketers is perhaps the most over-
saturated market on the Internet.
I advise people to learn what everyone else is doing - then do
Push vs. Attraction Mentality
Most self-proclaimed "Internet Marketing Gurus" still recommend
a website design that works very much like an infomercial on TV.
Television infomercials work because the broadcast medium can accurately
saturate the airwaves with enough hype so that eventually the sales message
gets through. The constant media bombardment wears many down and some buy
just to satisfy their curiosity. The small businessperson can't afford
to compete due to the cost of television media time.
On-line marketers are not able to broadcast their sales message to
anyone who happens to leave the TV on. We reach our customers by
attracting them to our websites, usually for unique information or with
the offer of a solution to an existing problem.
The Prevailing Marketing Formula
1) Write a ton of sales copy, fill it full of action verbs and lists
of selling points, often called benefits.
2) Offer a high "NORMAL" sales price. Then offer a limited time
discount and a money back guarantee.
3) Pepper the "long copy" with a liberal application of testimonials.
4) Offer several "Free Bonuses" near the end of the sales copy and
tell people that the bonuses are available NOW and may not be
available later. They must buy today - right now!
There is nothing really wrong with this marketing formula, it still
works, especially for information products and novelty items that sell
for under $50 on-line.
Even The Leaders Are Playing Follow The Leader
The problem is EVERYONE including the leaders is doing the exact same
things. It seems like hardly anyone is thinking for himself or herself.
Most Internet marketers start by choosing a product to sell, and then
research & develop a market afterwards. Let's turn that tactic around.
Start with a subject that you already have a special interest and
Find A Market That Is Easy To Reach
1) Start by defining your market, choose one that is NOT saturated.
2) Develop a marketing strategy to reach this market.
3) Identify or develop a product specifically for this target market.
Push vs. Pull
Traditional marketing is a PUSH medium. The Internet is a PULL medium.
We are accustomed to PUSH marketing through the conventional media
channels. We are used to having the broadcast media surround us.
It runs on and on, with or without anyone paying any attention. You can't
buy "eyeballs" on-line nearly as easy as through the conventional media
The Principal Of Attraction
You ATTRACT visitors and sales online through the principal of
ATTRACTION. In other words you attract visitors to what they are
already looking for, a solution for an existing desire. Using this
principal of attraction you don't find people they find you. People
will find you in many ways. The ticket is to understand the nature
of their unfulfilled desire, in order to fill it.
Using the principal of attraction you can use free or low cost marketing
techniques. You can take advantage of free promotional techniques like
keyword placement and optimization in the major search engines. You can
buy highly targeted keywords, banners, or classified ezine ads targeted
to your unique market.
Don't Follow "The Three Foot Rule"
Rather than marketing to anyone who gets close enough to talk to you,
you can place your information and sales letters where customers are
already looking for the solution to their need. This method is much
cheaper but requires more advance planning and testing to succeed.
OK Here Is The Rule
I learned the following rule from Corey Rudl in his Internet Marketing
Course. It's taken some time to really sink in, even though it's a
very direct and simple rule.
"FIND A MARKET that is easy to reach and then find a need
in that market that you can fill. This is the easiest way
to success and almost EVERYONE OVERLOOKS IT".
This week's article by VR Robert Smith
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