Most of us will fail... Here's what to do about it...

14 replies
Is this really for you?

Many people have been attracted to the idea of making vast amounts of money in little or no time at all using this new technology we call the Internet.

It's a little bit like the California Gold Rush in 1849. A few people have made fortunes but most people have made nothing at all and many have lost money.

So I have to ask, is this for you?

Because it's not for everyone.

The honest truth that is most people fail. Sure, there are the one hit wonders and if you give them a chance they will talk your ear off about their success.

But they are the exception, not the rule.

Most people fail. And they all fail for the same few reasons.


Providing value

Many people fail because they fail to provide value for others.

Every brick and mortar store you come across in a mall has to provide value to its customers. They provide this value with the merchandise that they sell and the prices they offer. Sometimes the real value is in their customer service or with their selection of merchandise.

In some way each of these stores provide value to the customer. And when they stopped providing enough value they go out of business.

This happens every time.

For some strange reason people have this idea that the Internet is somehow different. They think that the rules of doing business and providing value just don't apply.

But they are wrong.

To succeed online you need to provide real value to others. If you're not willing to do this then don't bother starting your online business.


The 80/20 rule

The 80/20 rule basically says that 80% of your profits (or other successes) will come from 20% of your efforts. The trouble is that the opposite is also true: 20% of our successes or profits come from 80% of our efforts.

When it comes to doing business 80% of our time is mostly wasted.

The trick here is then to eliminate the wasted parts.

You can read more about the 80/20 rule here:<br />
Pareto principle - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia


Getting Traffic

Another common problem that I see has to do with getting traffic.

Many people seem to struggle with getting traffic to their website.

Assuming that your website provides real value to people there is a wide assortment of ways to get traffic.

These include: search engine optimization, RSS feeds, back linking, and social media.

There are a zillion blog posts and free e-books out there for you to read. Just go search for them.

To succeed you will need to become an expert at getting traffic.

One thing I should mention is not to overlook the power of repeat visitors. Give people a reason to come back and they will. Getting traffic from repeat visitors is frequently easier than getting traffic from people who are visiting your website for the first time.


Go where the hungry fish are

If you're trying to get traffic to your website one of the easiest ways to get traffic is to go where the hungry fish are.

Find places that are ready have a lot of traffic from people who are hungry for the information you provide and piggy back off of their traffic.

For example, if you have a website with valuable information about poodles then search for poodle forums on Google.

One of the main purposes of forums is for people to ask questions. These people are looking for information, and it just might be kind the information you can provide.


Analyzing Traffic

If you have a website but you don't have some sort of statistics to figure out where your traffic is coming from then you will probably fail.

In trying to get traffic you may try things like posting on forums, posting comments on the related blogs, using stumble upon, using twitter and other social media.

Not all will send you equal amounts of traffic. Not even close.

Some will send you lots and lots of traffic; others will only give you a trickle of traffic.

And it's not always the ones that you expect.

And so you need to track this.

I recommend using Google analytics but you can use whatever.

Just start tracking!

I've started dozens of websites and I have found that the 80/20 principle applies to sources of traffic.

80% of visits to any website are from 20% of the sources. And 20% of my traffic comes from 80% of my sources.

So let's say I had a hundred visits to my blog today I would expect that 80 of those visits came from just a few sources.

Use this information and focus on the sources that send you most of your traffic.


Conversion is Key

I've talked a lot about traffic but traffic is meaningless unless it converts. Conversion is Key.

If you're selling something then you need to find a way for your traffic to convert to actual sales. If you're trying to get someone to sign up for your e-mail newsletter you will also need to worry about conversion.

Now conversion is a tricky thing and there is a lot involved in it.

A couple tips for getting higher conversion on your website:
have a good headline
make sure your page loads quickly for the average Internet user
have someone look over your page
test different formats and see which one works best
find your competitors and look at what formats they're using, try to learn from the best

You need to become a master of conversion. It takes time but it's well worth it.


Automation

Are there certain things or tasks that take you a lot of time? Could you outsource these items for a small fee?

Look for ways to automate your business and not be a slave to it.

I recommend reading the four hour work week by Timothy Ferriss to learn more about automation and outsourcing.


Build followers

A few weeks before my birthday every year I get a postcard from Marie Calendars. The postcard is simple. It simply says Happy Birthday and come in for a free piece of pie. And three out of the last four years I have made a special trip to Marie Calendars to get my free piece of pie with my dinner.

Marie Calendars built a following using this simple technique and got me to make a special trip to their restaurant that I otherwise would not have made.

You need to do the same thing for your business. You need to build a following.

You can do this using RSS and encouraging visitors to subscribe to your RSS feeds.

You can build an e-mail list and e-mail subscribers every time you post something valuable on your site.

You can build a following on twitter and tweet about each of your new postings to your blog or website.

The easiest way to get traffic is to broadcast updates to your blog or website to people that you know are already interested.


Construct a group

Everyone has strengths and weaknesses. Everyone has things that they love to do and things they avoid doing at all costs.

For me, doing of the technical stuff like buying a domain, setting up a web host, and messing with PHP to get everything working is the fun part.

On the other hand, things like copy writing and graphic design are much more challenging. They just don't come naturally to me.

To overcome this I have begun building a group of people that are interested in succeeding online and have different skills.

I have a couple friends that are very good at graphic design work. But they are technically challenged. And so we help each other out.

You need to construct a group of like-minded individuals with skills that complement yours. These people can be extremely helpful in assisting you with things that you are not very knowledgeable about.

I've a friend who is very good at making videos and posting them online. If I ever have a problem with making the video I know I can just ask him instead of spending hours upon hours trying to find the answer by myself.


Stick to 1 thing at a time

One of my own personal failings has been not sticking to one thing at a time.

This is something that I'm trying to change.

Pick one thing and stick to it. Don't be distracted by the next new and cool thing that comes your way.

If you are constantly distracted by things you will most likely never finish any project.


What do you think?

What's your opinion on this? I would love to hear it!
#fail
  • Profile picture of the author dndoseller
    I agree with everything except for sticking with one thing at a time.

    I think its healthy and natural to experiment and try things if you are stuck or bored with a method or certain site. I have gotten my biggest breakthroughs that way.
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  • Profile picture of the author Ian Jackson
    Thanks Nick

    Construct a group...

    What is your suggested recruitment strategy for building/finding a group
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  • Profile picture of the author Bruce NewMedia
    I think under "Get A Group" I would add another reason to be or get a group together is for MORAL SUPPORT.... (not just for skills)

    I have found internet marketing to be a rather isolating endeavor and have benefited when I interact with other marketers. This can be both online and offline.

    Just my thought - otherwise I agree completely with your other points, Nick.
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  • Profile picture of the author jayden.fellze
    I am quite caught on the 80/20 part. It is indeed true that sometimes the 80% comes with our effort and the 20% is on the profit. Somehow, this is quite true for the newbies, since, total effort should be exerted and if there is perseverance and hard work, the 80/20 rule will be reciprocated.
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  • Profile picture of the author Easy Cash
    Great post Nick

    Every point you make is spot on.
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    • Profile picture of the author edhan
      Sticking with one at a time is correct. But most people do not ALLOW it to perform before abandoning it and move to the next business.

      I had done one success business with a good handful of downline but unfortunately due to some downlines are expecting a quick result decide to abandon before they can see profit. So the entire business collapsed though it is a good business in long term.

      So, in every business that you want to look for success, give it some time before giving up. First choose wisely and stick with it by working hard. Success will follow when the right time comes.
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      • Profile picture of the author nick1123
        Originally Posted by brucerby View Post

        I think under "Get A Group" I would add another reason to be or get a group together is for MORAL SUPPORT.... (not just for skills)

        I have found internet marketing to be a rather isolating endeavor and have benefited when I interact with other marketers. This can be both online and offline.

        Just my thought - otherwise I agree completely with your other points, Nick.
        _____
        Bruce
        Oh yah, moral support is important especially in the beginning when you're making no money.


        Originally Posted by jayden.fellze View Post

        I am quite caught on the 80/20 part. It is indeed true that sometimes the 80% comes with our effort and the 20% is on the profit. Somehow, this is quite true for the newbies, since, total effort should be exerted and if there is perseverance and hard work, the 80/20 rule will be reciprocated.
        Personally I have been trying to identify the 80% of my time that is wasted doing unproductive things like checking my email every 5 minutes.


        Originally Posted by edhan View Post

        So, in every business that you want to look for success, give it some time before giving up. First choose wisely and stick with it by working hard. Success will follow when the right time comes.
        Exactly. I think Seth Godin wrote a book covering this called The Dip
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  • Profile picture of the author ripsnorta2
    The Pareto principle is interesting, and applies fairly well to most situations, but there's one thing you're missing if you are creating value.

    80 percent of the work will create about 20 percent of the value of a product, but the real value in most things happens in the top 20 percent. That's where errors are caught and polish is applied.

    And unfortunately the Pareto principle comes into play here again: That last 20 percent of effort usually takes about 80 percent of the time needed to create the product.
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  • Profile picture of the author grover69
    Really a fantastic post. The thing I realized this week is what you talked about automation. I was doing a repetitive task that was eating up all of my time. By outsourcing this I have had the most stress free week in a year and I can finally see how to scale my business up to where I want it.
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  • Profile picture of the author Mary Gallivan
    Hi

    The way I look at it is that most people fail AT SOME STAGE they don't give up. The ones who really fail are those who have given up altogether for one or more of the reasons you give - good list!

    I think other reasons you could add to the list is that they fail for lack of having a plan or maybe they need to have a long think about their strengths and skills and then change direction.

    Mary
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    • Profile picture of the author DeadGuy
      Failure is highly underrated. There is no better teacher. Failure gave us the lightbulb, the pharmaceutical industry, the computer industry, the semiconductor and far too many other positives to list.

      The cause of most failure, at least in IM, comes from trying to shortcut the hard work of adding value and promotion (as you pointed out). Success happens as a result of learning the causes for initial failure, modifying the approach and trying again. The cycle of incremental failure, adjusting the strategy and retrying is the only true, time-tested approach to lasting success. Failure is a necessary component for success... just as there would be no "good" without "evil".
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  • Profile picture of the author mormel
    Hi Nick,

    The beauty of failing online is that you get to know your own weaknesses. When you go down, go down with class!

    But even better: overcome your initial failures and learn from them. Your idea of groups is what I managed to do with some outsourcing: you've got to do what you do best, and let others do what takes you too much time and effort. That makes life a whole lot easier, online as well as offline (I wouldn't dream of trying to do a plumming job here at home that a plummer could do 10 times better and faster than I could. Just stick to your trade!).

    But you're right: it takes some time before you see these things in your online business...

    Yours, warriorly, Ed
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  • Profile picture of the author Roger Mayne
    Brilliant post Nick!!

    I can identify with every point you make. I think you've hit the nail on the head with that list. Being accountable to someone is also a good thing, which is part of the motivation and moral support.

    Talking through your ideas with people who don't necessarily understand what you're trying to do can give you false feedback sometimes. This forum is great for that because most members know what you're doing and where you're coming from.
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