What Kind of Questions Do You Ask?

Profile picture of the author Dennis Gaskill by
You know, of all the people new to Internet Marketing who come here, I think I can predict who will experience some success relatively quickly and who will struggle for a long time.

How?

By the kinds of questions they ask.

Some people get what it takes even though they don't yet know what it takes. What that means is they understand that they have a lot to learn, they have a desire to learn, and they ask thoughtful questions that lead to the kind of answers that further their knowledge and take them closer to their goal of a successful online business.

Then there's the other kind of newbie. They ask questions that don't further their understanding of Internet Marketing. They ask what I'd call "cocktail party" questions. They are conversation starters and nothing more. They do not lead to the kind of answers that take them closer to their goals, if they have goals.

If you want to succeed - in anything - you have to ask good questions. I've seen quite a few "cocktail party" questions lately. Questions that really don't belong in this forum, they belong in the off topic forum. But this isn't a rant about that, it's just a wee bit of advice from someone whose been around the block quite a few times...

If you want more success, ask better questions.

If you ask silly questions you get back friendly banter that doesn't help you earn money. If you ask better questions you get back answers that help further your knowledge base and move you one step closer to your goal.

Your choice. Which do you want, success...or an online cocktail party?
#internet marketing #kind #questions

  • Profile picture of the author George Wright
    What does friendly banter mean?

    George Wright
  • Profile picture of the author Tsnyder
    You're absolutely right, Dennis. A smart guy once told
    me that successful people aren't the ones who have all
    the right answers... they're the ones who have all the
    right questions.

    Tsnyder
  • Profile picture of the author Dennis Gaskill
    Originally Posted by George Wright View Post

    What does friendly banter mean?
    Small talk.

    Originally Posted by Tsnyder View Post

    You're absolutely right, Dennis. A smart guy once told
    me that successful people aren't the ones who have all
    the right answers... they're the ones who have all the
    right questions.
    That's an excellent point. It reminds me of another smart guy who made a similar comment about leaders. Leaders don't have all the answers, but they know where to find them.
  • Profile picture of the author Paul Myers
    Small talk.
    Ummm... Dennis? That WAS friendly banter...

    Excellent point, by the way. For the smart person, every answer brings more questions.


    Paul
  • Profile picture of the author Dennis Gaskill
    Originally Posted by Paul Myers View Post

    Ummm... Dennis? That WAS friendly banter...

    Excellent point, by the way. For the smart person, every answer brings more questions.


    Paul
    Hmm...okay. Switching from the serious nature of my post to subtle humor isn't my strong suit, apparently. I hereby request George Wright only uses absurd humor when he's the first one to comment after my post.

    Just kidding, we all need to laugh at ourselves from time to time, I guess I was due.

    I agree with what you said, too, Paul. I think it was Albert Einstein who said, "The more I learn, the more I realize I don’t know."
  • Profile picture of the author Rod Cortez
    I came to this thread because I saw someone wrote "cocktail party" and brought my martini shaker......

    In all seriousness, I tend to agree with you Dennis. When someone asks a very specific question, you can usually tell that they're taking action and trying to implement something as opposed to someone who asks a question like "what do you think about guru A using this tactic?" or "what's more important traffic or sales copy?".

    One of my favorite chapters in AWAKEN THE GIANT WITHIN is the one on asking better questions. When one asks better questions they tend to come up with better answers. Now, I've got a question.....where in the heck did I put my 144 oz. coffee mug?

    RoD
  • Profile picture of the author Zeus66
    I'm really digging all your mindset advice lately, Dennis. You're nailing it with this one. I notice myself picking out newer faces here all the time and I tend to categorize by "gets it" or "is clueless." And I don't mean their level of knowledge at all. As you say, it's about the quality of their questions and what those questions say about the person's priorities and their mindset. Great post!

    John
  • Profile picture of the author Dennis Gaskill
    RoD, you left your mug at the last cocktail party. If you sign up to my mailing list I can get it back to you for just $29.95 for shipping and handling. Mostly handling.

    I've been meaning to read Awaken the Giant Within for a long time. I actually checked the audio version out of the library a few months ago after being on a waiting list to get it, only to have my CD player crap out when it did come in. I've got a new player, but now I'm on a big waiting list again.

    And yes, those are representative of the type of questions I was talking about. I actually started to post a similar reply in one of those threads and decided better of it, not wanting to single any one person out.

    @ John - ...and as I'm sure you've also noticed, it's a lot easier to help the ones that get it.
  • Profile picture of the author mikemcmillan
    Dennis said,
    Your choice. Which do you want, success...or an online cocktail party?

    I'll have a Harvey Wallbanger light on the Galliano .

    Seriously Dennis, you nailed it as usual.

    When I was teaching, after the lecture (we used to lecture in the old days) students would come up and say, "I don't know how to do this problem."

    I would say, "What is your question?" Some would turn around and walk away. Some would stare at me like a deer caught in the headlights. Some would think for a minute and actually ask a question. As time went by they caught on.

    I wasn't there to solve their problems. I was there to help them learn to ask the right questions. Sometimes it worked.

    So Dennis, rather than standing here like one of those dumb ass deer caught in the headlights , (which is my normal going-through-life state) let me ask you a question.

    I'm coming to you as a complete newbie who wants to begin in affiliate marketing. In no more than 20 words, what is the single biggest mistake I am likely to make?

    Second part, where's my Harvey Wallbanger guy?
  • Profile picture of the author Matt Bard
    One of the hardest things to get across is when you try to get someone to realize that they are asking the wrong questions.

    They often feel as though we are trying to tear down their attempts to carry out an ingenious plan.

    Usually leads to those "veterans against the newbies" discussions.

    Only a handful get that their plan was built on faulty assumptions and a shaky foundation after doing a little listening.

    ...what is the single biggest mistake I am likely to make?
    Mike, can I take a stab at it?

    Not matching the right offer to the right market. Failure to understand that not all traffic is the same. (19)
  • Profile picture of the author Dennis Gaskill
    Originally Posted by mikemcmillan View Post


    So Dennis, rather than standing here like one of those dumb ass deer caught in the headlights , (which is my normal going-through-life state) let me ask you a question.

    I'm coming to you as a complete newbie who wants to begin in affiliate marketing. In no more than 20 words, what is the single biggest mistake I am likely to make?

    Second part, where's my Harvey Wallbanger guy?
    How about...asking me for advice!

    Oh, you were serious? OK. First let me say that I mostly market my own products. Affiliate products are a secondary income for me. Second, I can think of several likely mistakes. Third, 20 words isn't much to work with, but I like a good challenge, so... Fourth, I'm going to sum it up in a one-word answer:
    Research
    Most newbies fail to do useful research on several levels. They don't research keywords, products, reputations, sales copy, sales page leaks, their own list or website visitor's likes, dislikes, interests and tendencies, etc. Nor do they research the best ways to lead people to their affiliate links. That's partly the merchants fault. So very many only offer a some stinking graphics or text links, few offer any training.

    I made the same mistake most merchants do when I first started an affiliate program. Didn't have a lot of success with it. When I relaunch my affiliate program it will be way different from what most merchants do. There will be training, better sales material including brandable free reports, courses, and ebooks to give away, and so on.

    In other words, my first failure at running an affiliate program was treated as feedback. I've learned from it, and will improve it greatly the next time around. I've even bought a separate domain just for affiliate training.

    That's my story and I'm sticking to it. How'd I do, teach? Speaking of teaching, I wish I'd have had a teacher like you when I was in school. Not a one taught me to think, at least not in a way I understood it as such. I'd have probably been one of your students that just stares at you like a deer in the headlights. The thing is, I'd have kept staring at you until you gave me a clue or ran me over. I did learn how to memorize what they wanted to hear though. Yay rah.

    Oh, lastly, will you settle for a Miller Lite? I've got a cold one here for you any time.

    Originally Posted by Matt M View Post

    One of the hardest things to get across is when you try to get someone to realize that they are asking the wrong questions.

    They often feel as though we are trying to tear down their attempts to carry out an ingenious plan.

    Usually leads to those "veterans against the newbies" discussions.

    Only a handful get that their plan was built on faulty assumptions and a shaky foundation after doing a little listening.
    Some truth to that, Matt, but they need to hear what they need to hear. Some just need to hear it a few more times than others do.
  • Profile picture of the author Kella Bella
    Here's my thoughts on this. I hope btw I exemplify this thought! This forum has some great information. Better information than I have ever paid for before. I respect that so most of my questions come from trying to learn more about ideas that are presented and while doing research needing some clarification. Someone mentioned something a few days ago about people wanting the "secret". To me, the secrets are all over the forum but imo if I am too lazy to even look for them and do my due diligence for getting information then who am I to ask anyone anything?

    I would like to add though that I'm bringing olive juice cause I be likin my martinis super dirty! I wanna be successful and have good cocktail parties-is that too much for a girl to ask for? hehe
  • Profile picture of the author Dennis Gaskill
    Kelly, one of the things I've noticed about you is that you're eager to learn and you ask the specific kind of questions that demonstrate you're taking action. That means most of the time you're probably going to get the kind of answers that help lead you to success.
  • Profile picture of the author Kella Bella
    Originally Posted by Dennis Gaskill View Post

    Kelly, one of the things I've noticed about you is that you're eager to learn and you ask the specific kind of questions that demonstrate you're taking action. That means most of the time you're probably going to get the kind of answers that help lead you to success.

    Thanks Dennis that's a nice compliment. And I hope you are right about the success part!
  • Profile picture of the author Dennis Gaskill
    Originally Posted by Kella Bella View Post

    Thanks Dennis that's a nice compliment. And I hope you are right about the success part!
    Whether I'm right or not............................................... is up to YOU. :p
  • Profile picture of the author mikemcmillan
    I'm going to sum it up in a one-word answer: Research

    Was hoping you said that Dennis. Thank you!
    The Miller Lite? Don't open it yet, but keep it cold!

    Since Dennis cheaped out on his answer to my original question with a one-word answer I want to get even with him. Click on his "Almost A Newsletter" link in his sig file and look for his free
    "Keyword Basics" ebook on his site. He told you the key was in research--so learn how to do the research with his ebook. Let's burn up his bandwidth with downloads. It really is good--I'd grab it for free before he comes to his senses. --Mike
  • Profile picture of the author Dennis Gaskill
    Originally Posted by mikemcmillan View Post

    I'm going to sum it up in a one-word answer: Research

    Was hoping you said that Dennis. Thank you!
    The Miller Lite? Don't open it yet, but keep it cold!

    Since Dennis cheaped out on his answer to my original question with a one-word answer I want to get even with him. Click on his "Almost A Newsletter" link in his sig file and look for his free
    "Keyword Basics" ebook on his site. He told you the key was in research--so learn how to do the research with his ebook. Let's burn up his bandwidth with downloads. It really is good--I'd grab it for free before he comes to his senses. --Mike
    Actually I kind of explained why that was my answer, it wasn't a complete cheap-out!

    Just wanted to add that the ebook you referred to is listed in the first bullet point so anyone that wants it won't have to hunt. It will be there for another 2-3 days until the next issue goes up, then it's going to be offered as a special report for $10.00. So the "free" availability is about over.

    PS - I'm keeping the beer cold for you, but after 30 days that service goes to $17.00 a month.
  • Profile picture of the author DogScout
    I haven't had a question a search didn't answer...

    Wonder what that means?
  • Profile picture of the author Dennis Gaskill
    Originally Posted by DogScout View Post

    I haven't had a question a search didn't answer...

    Wonder what that means?
    In your case it means you're self-reliant, know how to frame your searches, and know how to ask questions that give you the answers you need. If everyone were like that, posts like my OP wouldn't be needed.
  • Profile picture of the author bocephus
    Thanks Dennis. A great common sense post.

    As an IM newbie I read this forum and marvel at two things:

    1. The lack of patience demonstrated by many novices. This seems to be generally accompanied by a propensity to flit from one "sure-fire" idea to another with the hope that something will happen fast.

    2. The lousy advice some non-novices are willing to dish out for the sake of another click on their signature.

    Gotta love the "3 Things All Newbies Need..." type posts.

    If a novice clearly has no idea how to do keyword research, they probably don't need to build a squeeze page, or add more affiliate links to their poorly performing page.

    Anyway... thanks for the good post. Nice to read stuff not full of B.S.

    Michelob Golden Draft ... tall.

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