I mentioned in a previous article that you don’t want to become one of those many one hit wonders that make a big splash on the Internet and then vanish – but how do you make sure that you’re not? Because it’s really easy to say you won’t be, but the fact is that no one PLANS to be a one hit wonder; in fact it happens when you DON’T plan.
I’m going to offer some tips here for ensuring that your success is not the flash in the pan variety, but rather the type of success that continues to pay off day in and day out for years to come.
Really what we are talking about is becoming what you might call a “repeat success.” Because isn’t that the opposite of being a one hit wonder? There is nothing at all wrong with that initial success – it’s repeating that success over and over that gets you the outcome you’re seeking. Sort of like being a one hit wonder a hundred or even several hundred times. And when you view it like this, you see that it becomes easier.
The first thing I’m going to recommend will sound too easy, perhaps, but it’s extremely important that you try it out for the next 21 days. I say 21 days, because psychologists say it takes that long to make a new habit. Plus, it gives you the proper chance to evaluate the results and see that what I’m telling you is profound, to say the least.
Okay, are you ready? The first thing you need to do to ensure you have ongoing success is to pick a number from 2 to 5, and then do that many things in your business everyday.
Let’s say you are a super busy person with a full time job and a young family, so you don’t have much time to devote to your online business. Your number is going to be 2, because you’re only going to have time to do 2 things a day. If you’re working online full time, your number is 5. And if you’re in between, you can determine the right number for you.
Now then, every evening you’re going to make a list of the most important things you need to accomplish the following day in your business. If your number is 2, then write down the 2 things you want to do. If your number is 5, then you’ll list the 5 things.
Obviously, you’re not going to choose 5 really big things like “build a new website,” “create a new product,” etc. Instead, you’ll break down your tasks so that they’re manageable and doable in the time allotted. And then you’re going to do those things, no matter what. As in, NO MATTER WHAT HAPPENS.
Doing the things on your list takes priority over your favorite TV shows, eating out, etc. These things are as important as brushing your teeth and sleeping, and once you realize that then you’re not arguing with yourself on whether or not to do them, you’re simply DOING them.
I told you this would seem too simple – does it? Because this one technique will do more for you than almost anything else. Certainly it will allow you to accomplish more than any self-help seminar you could attend, or any time management tool you could use. The list technique is not new, it’s old and it’s proven and you know what else? It flat out WORKS. So if you’re not already doing it, then I encourage you with all my heart to start using this method now, today, right this very moment.
A word of caution – I see students of Internet Marketing get very excited and say something like, “I am going to do TEN things every day!” But this is a trap. What happens is you get burned out and in less than 21 days you’re not doing ANYTHING in your business because it just became too overwhelming, too time consuming and too much like WORK. And isn’t that what so many of us are trying to escape, the drudgery of WORK?
So don’t fall into that trap. If you have lots of hours in your day then choose the number 5, do those 5 things in the morning and early afternoon, and then TAKE THE REST OF THE DAY OFF. That’s right – do not allow yourself to get burned out because you will find that your biggest asset in your business is actually your enthusiasm for the business.
Also, do take a day off. Not 2 days, at least not in the beginning, because if you take 2 days off those 2 days often become 3, and then 4, and then you’re not doing anything. But you can take one day off and go do something totally unrelated to your online business, and come back refreshed and re-energized the next day.
My second tip for ensuring you have long term success is so simple, and yet few people understand the power of it. Ready? It’s to FINISH WHAT YOU START. If you start creating a product, finish it and then promote it. It’s not finished until you get it out there and promote it. If you’re writing a blog, set a schedule and keep to it. True, your blog will never be “finished,” but if you stop writing then it’s as good as an unfinished project.
Look, I probably sound like your parents on this one. “Son, you’ve got to learn to finish what you start.” Why do you suppose your parents said that? Frankly, they probably said it because their parents said it, but there is a terrific amount of wisdom behind that thought.
First of all, if you don’t finish what you start then you have wasted your time and energy on that project. Second, you receive nothing in return for your effort – you can’t make sales and earn money on a product you didn’t finish.
Third, unfinished work breaks you down psychologically. Having unfinished tasks in your life is like having pesky little green goblins sitting on your shoulders tapping you on the side of your head and telling you that you’re a failure. Why? Because an unfinished project is a failure. It’s a constant reminder of something you intended to do but didn’t follow through on.
One note: If you’re in the middle of a project and you realize that it’s the WRONG thing for you to be doing (for whatever reason) then by all means bail out. There is no sense wasting more time on something once you’ve realized your project has little hope of success.
Careful planning and research should minimize the instances of this happening, but there are times when things aren’t in our control. For example, you’re writing a series of promotional emails for an affiliate product that suddenly gets pulled from the market. Best case scenario – re-adapt the emails to another product and move on.
Which brings me to my next tip for ensuring you are not a one hit wonder – success loves SPEED. If you are quick to move from idea to implementation, you’ll seldom have a project that goes unfinished or doesn’t pan out.
For example, if you’re writing code for a plug-in on a piece of software today and you get it finished next week, you can start selling it. If it takes you 6 months to write that code, and the software is obsolete in 5 months, you’ve wasted your time.
Not to mention the fact that speed also reduces competition, at least initially. Using the plug-in example, if you’re fast you can get that plug-in on the market 2 weeks ahead of any competitor, rather than weeks behind the competition. Again, success loves speed so when you get a great idea, don’t sit on it, ACT on it. NOW.
Next is your mailing list. Yes, you need to be building a list. I don’t care what kind of marketing you’re doing or want to do, what your product or service is, etc. It doesn’t matter, because everyone who enjoys long term success online is growing a list.
In fact they have TWO lists – a list of buyers and a list of interested prospects. And whatever else you are doing, you need to be building that list and sending them offers. This is KEY to long term online success. I know you’ve heard this before, but if you’re not aggressively building your list then you’re just not “getting” it and it’s high time you start.
I don’t mean to sound like a drill sergeant on this, but it’s simply not negotiable. Unless you want to be some flash in the pan marketer who creates a product, sells a few hundred copies and disappears off the Internet, you MUST build a list and never stop building that list.
The reason you can never stop is because some people on your list will lose interest in your niche, or they change email addresses and don’t tell you, or any of a number of reasons they are no longer a viable prospect, and so you always need to be adding new prospects in order to continue to grow your business.
Now some folks will say that you don’t need a list because of social media, to which I’ll vehemently disagree. Social media is an awesome tool to help you build your list, and I highly recommend you spend time on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and YouTube if it’s helping you build your list. But you still need a LIST of people who know you and like you so that you can send them emails and yes, SELL them stuff.
You’ll find that the majority of your income comes from emailing your list and either letting them know about your own products or suggesting an affiliate product on which you earn a commission.
The best thing you can do when it comes to list building? Build quickly, aggressively and without hesitation. What I’m saying is, find all the best ways that work for you to build your email list and then be relentless in using those methods to build your list even bigger and stronger.
Look at it this way – if you add 10 subscribers a day to your list, in a year you will have 3,650 subscribers. But if you really focus your time and resources on list building and instead of adding 10 subscribers a day you add 100 subscribers a day, in a year you will have over 30 THOUSAND subscribers.
This is a profound difference in just a year. Multiply it out over 3, 5 or 10 years, and you can see how worthwhile it is to be aggressive in your list building.
Of course quality matters as well. A list of buyers is worth far, far more than a list of prospects.
I’ll tell you my secret for quickly building a list of buyers: Create a product that sells for $5 to $10, and then give away 100% of the commission to your affiliates, paid immediately via PayPal. You’ll find software that automates this if you look for it. By paying your affiliates 100% commission that goes straight to them, they have a huge incentive to promote your product. And YOU get to keep the prospects and market to them time and time again.
The marketers who DON’T build a list? Those would be the one-hit wonder people. They do something, make some money, but don’t stay in touch with their customers and prospects. And the funny thing is, they left the lion’s share of the money on the table because it’s in the FOLLOW UP that you make the REAL money.
Think about this – you sell a $17 product, get a list of buyers and prospects, and then do nothing. Or you never bothered to gather the list in the first place. So whatever you made on your $17 product is ALL you are going to earn.
But if you captured the email addresses, you can continue to market to these folks for days, weeks, months and even years to come, earning thousands of dollars more in affiliate commissions and by selling your own products.
And the last bit of advice on how NOT to be a one hit wonder? Focus. That is, choose a niche and focus on that niche at least until it’s earning you a steady stream of income. Once you hit that level, if you think you want to try a second niche, go for it. But using a scattergun approach from the beginning to enter 2, 5 or 10 niches all at once is only going to yield you minimal results at best because your energies are so dispersed.
In other words, you can get a tiny bit of success in several niches simultaneously, or a whole lot of success in one niche – your choice. Personally I prefer to devote all of my time and energy to just one niche, and I’ve found it pays off quite well.
And by niche, I do mean NICHE. Weight loss is not a niche. Weight loss for women over 50 in the Dallas area is a niche. Or weight loss for work at home moms. Or weight loss for diabetics. The more narrow your focus, the easier it can be to reach your target audience and to get them to purchase because they feel you are speaking directly to them.
So don’t choose the “make money” niche because you’ll discover it’s too vast and too broad. Instead, choose the; “part time work for high schoolers” niche or the “supplement your social security with a profitable hobby” niche. See the difference?
I know I’ve given you a lot of tips here. You might want to go back and review (then implement aggressively), because it’s equivalent to rocket fuel for your business growth.
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