by Melani
14 replies
I realise I'm not the only one who's ever reached this point, and I've read similar threads hoping to find the answer, but I'm finding it really difficult to pick myself back up again today.

Until January of 2009 I was happily running my websites completely oblivious to the wider world of Internet Marketing. Ironically, I was actually making money with my websites, and I knew there were other people out there making a whole lot more, but I was content with where I was so never looked further.

After moving away from my niche at the time, I started to investigate IM and became very intrigued. Possibly the worst place to start, I began with PPC. I was lured in by a great sales pitch that convinced me I only needed $200 to start (like the creator of the training program did) and I would soon be making thousands.

Oh thousands was right... it was just leaving my bank account, not entering it. Once I reached the $5,000 loss mark, I stopped completely. There was obviously something I just wasn't getting.

Since then I've tried everything including manually blogging with adsense and other affiliate offers, fake review blogs, review websites (where you compare 3 products), auto-blogging, article marketing, Twitter and social bookmarking to get traffic, etc. None of it I liked, enjoyed or succeeded at.

Middle of last year I fell for a self-proclaimed guru trap and handed over $3,000 for a "JV" deal that turned out to be nothing but a rip off. The only positive out of it was it resulted in an ebook I wrote. Only problem with that was, I couldn't sell it.

I've had affiliates find it on Clickbank and send hops though, no sales. I've pushed it, no sales. Nothing.

So, I decided to go back to what I know well, do best and love the most - membership sites. I've really enjoyed getting everything together and had really high hopes for the sites success. Then of course, four days before I went live, someone else released the exact same idea only this guy is a"big name" in the industry, has hundred's of thousands of people on his mailing list and... I'm a nobody.

Thanks for the support of the wonderful Warriors here, I picked myself up again and moved forward launching my site. Given my sites aimed at those involved in the Internet Marketing niche, I followed advice and launched a WSO here. It got ignored. I got feedback on why it was being ignored, tweaked and relaunched it... again, nothing.

So I think maybe my price is too high, I lower it and try again. Nothing. So now, I offer it for free, and I get one bite. :confused: Part of my package offers completely free advertising for any product you wish (owned or affiliate) and all sorts of goodies which, to me and maybe I'm odd in my thinking with this, is something that everyone would want.

Oh yes, and I also took the advice of another guy and offered up my original ebook (the one I wrote for the so called JV deal) and offered that free just for signing up too.

So now, I have a site that's free to join, offers promotion capabilities and the ability to make affiliate sales, and gives away a free ebook that's 100% written by me (as in no PLR / rehashed stuff) and I still can't generate any interest.

I'm so close to throwing in the towel today that I just don't know what else to do. I've invested every last cent of my savings into this new site as I fully believe in it's concept and what it can provide for people. And I know this might sound silly, but I really love the site. I want to go back to helping people like I did before I passed my other sites over.

Someone please tell me, what am I doing wrong? Is IM just not meant to be for me? I feel like I'm banging my head against a brick wall and not even making a crack. :confused:

P.S. I purposely left my signature off this post so it's not seen as self-promotion.
#breaking #point
  • Profile picture of the author JeffMitchell
    Here is my take on what is going on.

    First thing. you are out there doing things that you don't enjoy or even like in the first place. Not going to work. People can see that you are not into what you are doing. So the trust factor is that you are only suffering to get thier money in your pocket.

    All the things like Twitter, social bookmarketing, facebook and blogging all take time to settle into and really make them worth your while. They are not things that you can just "do" for a couple days or weeks and see astounding results.

    Internet marketing is a flat out BEAST. And truthfully, it is something that very few people as you already know will ever succeed in.

    Take you time with everything that you are doing. It seems to me that you are allowing HYPE and promises to take advantage of you. And im sure your story is not the only one.

    Pick a marketing strategy that you can truly find passion in and go from there. Maybe it is writing, maybe it is video, ezines or anything. Just take your business in small steps.

    It took me well over a year before I really could understand what I was not doing and how to fix what I was doing.

    Just keep digging.

    jeff mitchell
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    • Profile picture of the author Melani
      @JeffMitchell
      Actually I was doing stuff I didn't enjoy. That's when I made the decision to go back to something I do love.

      @Nick Brighton
      Correct in that I can't make money via the main methods other people use. So instead, I created a place for those who know what their doing to leverage the power of my site to further promote themselves. And in return, yes, I would like to see my site profitable by doing what I do best.

      Basically - in the past, I created memebership sites to help others and those sites turned a profit. So now, I've gone back to creating a memebrship site just in a new Niche. I hope, like my other sites, this one covers it's costs yes.

      Arg I'm still not sure I'm making sense.
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      • Profile picture of the author Paul Myers
        Melani,

        First thing I'd do is revive/refocus on the stuff you've done in the past that makes you money.

        Schedule a little time each day to network your way to getting some active members for the new site. Even a small group of active people can be worth a lot to you, if you have something to offer them in return. And you do.

        Social networking that encourages people to make deals.


        Paul
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        Stop by Paul's Pub - my little hangout on Facebook.

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      • Profile picture of the author JoshuaG
        I took a look at your landing page and I guess I have a few thoughts...

        1. Your landing page tells me about the site but it doesn't show me anything. Why not make your landing page the site itself, or barring that at least show some video footage of what is available "inside".

        2. From the browse I did of your copy (who reads every word anyway?)
        I was not inspired. I don't care if I can meet other internet marketers because there are already lots of places to do that. If I'm at the "networking stage" of internet marketing, I already know where those places are.

        If your site has more to offer then a profile I can create about myself I don't see it. And the profile doesn't seem to have very much value. I don't care if I can let other internet marketers know I exist or tell them about what I'm selling. The last thing IM needs is another model that perpetuates IM'ers selling to IM'ers.

        I really don't think you should give up but if your vision of this membership site has more to offer you better share that vision. Otherwise I would post the site of flippa, cut my losses and move on to a better idea.
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        • Profile picture of the author Nick Brighton
          Originally Posted by Melani View Post

          @JeffMitchell
          Actually I was doing stuff I didn't enjoy. That's when I made the decision to go back to something I do love.

          @Nick Brighton
          Correct in that I can't make money via the main methods other people use. So instead, I created a place for those who know what their doing to leverage the power of my site to further promote themselves. And in return, yes, I would like to see my site profitable by doing what I do best.

          Basically - in the past, I created memebership sites to help others and those sites turned a profit. So now, I've gone back to creating a memebrship site just in a new Niche. I hope, like my other sites, this one covers it's costs yes.

          Arg I'm still not sure I'm making sense.
          The problem is you don't understand the market well enough it seems.

          Just because your other membership sites do well, doesn't automatically mean that ALL your projects will fly, just because they are memberships.

          For the record, have you seen how much content goes into a modern day IM membership site? Are you matching it? Improving on it? Doing anything differently or unique that can't be found elsewhere?

          That's your first port of call. The next is communicating the value and benefits to the masses.

          Get those two nailed, and heck darn it, I WILL SIGN UP myself
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  • Profile picture of the author Nick Brighton
    Let me get something straight here...

    You are trying to sell a B2B marketing product or service, but you openly confess that you can't make any money marketing to others?

    Would you buy driving lessons from somebody that never passed their test, and had several minor road accidents?

    Secondly, the problem is, with all of your attempts, that you simply don't know how to sell to people, or what to offer them.

    You might "think" you know what they want...but the numbers suggest otherwise. And even when you DO find something they want, you still need to be able to effectively sell to them.

    That's why you lost $5ooo in PPC, and why nobody is buying your WSO.

    Sorry for the harsh reality check, but this is the plain truth.

    I would have personally spent that $5ooo on a pro copywriter to create killer sales copy, and made sure I was selling what the market wanted first...but you live and learn.

    So, going forward? Learn to write copy, or hire a copywriter.

    Learn to do proper research and find out what people REALLY want to buy, how they want to buy it, how much for, in what format, and how they want to be sold.

    Know thy market = maketh thy cashola

    extra tip:

    I see you have some sites that you say are doing ok...why not build on their success? That's surely the surefire route to more cash isn't it?
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  • Hey don't get discouraged, we've all been there before. Just hold your head up high and remember that if you are not making money with 1 method, just move onto the other method. There are plenty of methods / ways to make money online. Don't get "all sad" if you've tried out a few things and nothing has worked for you so far. Many people fail for many years before they ever start making any money online. After all, this stuff isn't easy.

    Sincerely,
    Jim
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  • Profile picture of the author Vikram73
    Melani - you need to figure out why you failed at things.

    PPC is insanely profitable for people who test, tweak and test some more. Review sites and affiliates stuff works well if you're a good write and are patient with SEO and link building.

    Where did you fail?

    You have to deconstruct that. Maybe you should have been building your list with PPC? Maybe your review site just looked fake & customers aren't that stupid.

    Maybe your review site was awesome and you failed at SEO? Picked the wrong products to promote?

    IM only works when you have targeted traffic, good products & sites/landing pages that lead to sales.
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    • Profile picture of the author JeffMitchell
      PPC is definately profitable when you get to understanding the metrix of it. I have spend the last few months just tweaking and perfecting what I have going on right now to where it is producing a steady 10-20 leads a day at a managable ROI.

      But if you can't make money money with ppc, you can't make money with free stategies and vice verca. It is all about the what the end user gets when they arive at wherever you send them.

      Jeff Mitchell
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      HELP NEEDED! My Mother And Her Brother have been taking care of the mother with the help of Hospice. He just had a Massive Heart Attack while taking a short vacation. My mother had to go to Florida from Indiana to be with her brother and is not financially stable from being off work to be with grandma. Any Help Would Be Appreciated. http://www.gofundme.com/vg5kt4c

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  • Profile picture of the author Fallen_Angel
    If you believe your product is of value then dont give up.
    I remember when i was 9yrs old in my Karate Dojo, there was a poster on the side wall said "winners never quit, and quitters never win". Funny, I always remembered that poster. I also know there is a law of averages - what is law of averages its a sales law. Basically every "pitch" has a law of averages - some convert well 1 out of 10 some convert not as well 1 out of 1 000 000, not the point the point is you have to keep asking for sale, keep pitching.
    If you truly want to succeed online and what you have been doing is not working try different approach. Try marketing your online site through offline means, try different type of promotion, forums, blogs, whatever.
    Visualize yourself succeeding, do this daily.
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  • Profile picture of the author Ilya Feynberg
    If you're willing to share a bit more, I might be able to help out a bit. Not a JV offer or anything like that either

    PM is you choose too...
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    • Profile picture of the author FredJones
      Do what you love doing. Just because some guru is launching a membership site does not mean you shall not find takers, that is if you provide solid value in your membership site. Agreed that the guru will start a lot quicker than you but then, if you do provide value (and ask yourself without bias, if you had an option to choose purely based upon quality, where would you sign up - in the guru's membership site or in yours?) then you are going to make it over time.

      You may want to start IM part time while doing a full time job - that way, you shall always have a fall back. And never ever invest any money you earn from your full time job into IM if you really want to succeed. Once you start doing that, you would double-kill yourself.

      Hope that helps?
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      • Profile picture of the author Melani
        Originally Posted by vikramd View Post

        Melani - you need to figure out why you failed at things.
        Oh I know why I failed at the other things I tried. PPC was mostly because I went into it believe it was the "instant success" because that's how it was sold to me. Bear in mind I was an absolute newbie to IM then and fell for what I now realise was sales hype. If I was to ever to PPC again it would be very different.

        I failed at other methods because my heart wasn't there. I was desperately trying to make back the money I had lost and was grabbing at anything that sounded like it would work for me.

        Of course I realise that's not the way to go about it, which is why, Christmas just past I shrugged everything off and changed my focus back to what I know and love.

        Originally Posted by JoshuaG View Post

        I took a look at your landing page and I guess I have a few thoughts...

        1. Your landing page tells me about the site but it doesn't show me anything. Why not make your landing page the site itself, or barring that at least show some video footage of what is available "inside".

        2. From the browse I did of your copy (who reads every word anyway?)
        I was not inspired. I don't care if I can meet other internet marketers because there are already lots of places to do that. If I'm at the "networking stage" of internet marketing, I already know where those places are.

        If your site has more to offer then a profile I can create about myself I don't see it. And the profile doesn't seem to have very much value. I don't care if I can let other internet marketers know I exist or tell them about what I'm selling. The last thing IM needs is another model that perpetuates IM'ers selling to IM'ers.

        I really don't think you should give up but if your vision of this membership site has more to offer you better share that vision. Otherwise I would post the site of flippa, cut my losses and move on to a better idea.
        Oh boy, I really can't win with my sales page.

        The first one I had was filled with information about the site, all the different aspects it offered and how members could make use of each of them to profit. I received feedback that it had way too much information and was killing everything for me. I was told to be short and to the point.

        So I changed it up to include more "bullet points" and cut out the "too much reading" part. It still included the various parts of the site features, but I received feedback that it was too confusing including everything. That I should focus on three to five key factors of the site to convert people and then they would discover all the aspects once inside.

        With regards to the first point - making the landing page the site itself - I also tried that, but got feedback from a couple of people that it left them confused because it didn't tell them what the site was about. That they had to click on the home page link just to figure out what they were looking at.

        There's SO much more to the site than just profiles, honestly.

        Originally Posted by Nick Brighton View Post

        Just because your other membership sites do well, doesn't automatically mean that ALL your projects will fly, just because they are memberships.

        For the record, have you seen how much content goes into a modern day IM membership site? Are you matching it? Improving on it? Doing anything differently or unique that can't be found elsewhere?

        That's your first port of call. The next is communicating the value and benefits to the masses.

        Get those two nailed, and heck darn it, I WILL SIGN UP myself
        Oh I realise that because I've done well with my other sites that this one will automatically succeed. It's more a case of I know what I'm doing with regards to this type of site.

        I do think I'm doing something different and (well was) unique because until the other site launched right before mine, there was no other out there like it. Of course one person's idea of unique and/or different is not necessarily the same as others.

        And I certainly feel like I'm improving on aspects that are similar to other sites, even if it's just minor details to the way I run it/look after my members.

        That sort of relates to your point @FredJones too. That yes, this other guy got started a LOT quicker (1,500 members now), I do believe, and I realise this might make me sound a bit up myself, but I do believe I can do it better. This other site has been set up and basically left to do it's thing, where as I'm invested in my site and want to be there to help my members in any way that I can.

        And I guess to a certain degree that's also where I get extremely frustrated - 1,500 on his site realise the benefits and are making use of it. They "get" it. And I just can't seem to generate the same interest or enthusiasm.

        It absolutely kills me when I read comments on his site along the lines of "omg this was so needed, why didn't someone think of it ages ago", etc. Gah, I did think of it!

        Originally Posted by FredJones View Post

        You may want to start IM part time while doing a full time job - that way, you shall always have a fall back. And never ever invest any money you earn from your full time job into IM if you really want to succeed. Once you start doing that, you would double-kill yourself.
        Hehe, my full time "job" is a stay at home mum to one and an incubator for another for the next 3 months.
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        IM-Connect.com: Your #1 Social Network Community for Internet Marketers.
        Sell via the Classifieds ~ Contribute to Product Reviews ~ Set up JV Deals and AdSwaps ~ Plus so much more!! Check it out today and sign up for your free account!
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  • Profile picture of the author Emily Meeks
    Melani, if you don't mind I'm borrowing from what you stated in another thread.

    You've said before that you haven't cared to build a list, because you don't feel like sending out sales pitch after sales pitch. Instead, you want to HELP people. I think that is really noble intent, and to be quite honest with you, I think that objective can BEST be achieved by building a list.

    You also said in the other thread that you didn't think you could help out a list very well in an IM niche... I hate to say it, but Nick has a point - you wouldn't take driving lessons from someone who totaled cars multiple times. How can you teach Internet Marketing to others when you're hurting this badly as is?

    That said, I think the best thing you can do is get out of the IM niche, stat. Sure, there's money to be made teaching others to make money online, but the original point is to apply the knowledge you learn from Internet Marketing to other niches.

    What do YOU like, Melani? Cooking? Scrapbooking? Fitness? I want you to brainstorm about this. Please don't get fixated on Internet Marketing - it's clear that you're not enjoying yourself as is, so that must change.

    Somebody mentioned in another thread (it's from 2008, so I'm not going to bump it, but it has a great point) that when you're delving into niche marketing but don't know if your passion will be profitable, pick two niches - one that's proven to be profitable (i.e. dating, credit repair, weight loss, etc) and one that's a passion. Your "proven moneymaker" money can then be used to feed your passionate niche.

    I'll be honest with you and say that's exactly what I'm doing now. I have my own "passionate niche" that's a very significant part of my life, where people do spend quite a bit of money in it. It's perfect for Amazon marketing, and is in DIRE need of a great digital product. I'll be honest (feel free to look it up) that I would have "cold feet" branching out into a new niche that hasn't really been discussed on the Warrior Forum. That said, I'm going with exactly what makes money to feed that passionate experiment.

    One more point about list-building - my guess is that you're not such a fan of promoting digital products, but how would you feel about marketing physical ones? Even if people question the $97 ebook you're promoting, nobody will think twice about Amazon products. Then, if they're already on Amazon and start surfing around, you get commission on every single product they decide to buy, whether or not they buy your promoted product.

    I really hope you give that sentiment some thought. Look up Sara Young and Daniel Brock - both have great free reports on physical product marketing.

    In the meantime, instead of mulling over sites that didn't work out for you, have you considered selling them? I'm not an expert in site-flipping so I can't really give you much detail here, but to my understanding you can make a good few hundred per site you sell. Membership sites can go several times higher if you show their worth.

    I also see that you're a War Room member... there's another good report in there on simple membership sites. It should still be on the first or second page.

    Last but not least, I've got tons of ideas... I'm always overflowing with them, so feel free to PM me and I'll help you brainstorm. Let us know how everything goes.
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