Do You Suffer From Shiny New Toy Syndrome?

7 replies
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I'm going to use an example from outside of Internet Marketing to try to get
my point across because I think a different perspective can sometimes help
clarify things in a niche where many people suffer from myopia simply because
they're bombarded by this stuff day in and day out.

Let's move onto the example and then hopefully, you'll be able to answer the
question a little easier.

I play a card game called Magic The Gathering. Every year, new cards come out
and when they do, older cards are no longer allowed to be played if you're
playing Standard Constructed format.

When this happens, players fall into three groups. The first group is what I
call the "Shiny New Toy Syndrome" group.

This group will play all the new cards that they can, even though there are
still many old ones in the block that they can play legally.

The problem is, these cards aren't tested yet in a competitive environment.
Nobody really knows if they're going to perform well or not at all.

In most cases, the card choices are poor and players who normally do very
well in a competitive environment are now losing simply because they had to
play ALL of their shiny new toys.

Those in groups 2 and 3 usually do better.

Group 2 plays some of the newer cards but keeps as many of the older cards
as they can because they know they can perform well simply because they
have in the past.

Group 3 disregards all newer cards until they are proven to win, use as many
of the older cards that they played and still can play and then substitute
other older cards for the ones that have been removed. The thinking here
is that the older cards have a better synergy with what they're playing
because they all came out around the same time in the same block. They
may not be as good as the ones that were removed but they still have a
better chance of performing than the newer cards because of that synergy.

Groups 2 and 3 almost always perform better than group 1 because they
didn't completely gut their strategy simply to play with the newer toys.

Does group 1 have more fun in the sense that it has new and exciting cards
to play with? Maybe. But how much fun can it possibly be to lose?

I fall into the group 2 area. I probably won't do as well as group 3 but if I
analyze the new cards well and pick ONLY the ones that I am reasonably
sure will do well, I'll have a pretty good chance of winning.

We'll find out this Friday when I unleash my sorta new, sorta old green/white

Okay, now let's take this same principle and move it over to Internet

Let's take, as an example, when Facebook first became popular.

How many of you shiny new toy marketers flocked to it like crazy in order
to take advantage of the potential and abandoned everything else that you
were doing because it was old?

Maybe a better example is all these "make money online" products being
sold at Clickbank. You buy one, use it for a while, never really give it a
chance to start working for you and then, when a shiny new toy comes out,
you abandon the previous thing you were doing and pick up that shiny new

Be honest. How many of you fall into this trap?

Problem a lot of marketers have is that they get bored, regardless of how
well something is working. You see that new thing and you just HAVE to
try it. But to do that, and do it right, you many times have to abandon
something else because that shiny new toy takes so much darn time to
get going.

For example, people who dropped email marketing for article marketing. They
found they couldn't keep up with their list building because they were
spending so much time writing articles and submitting to every directory
in existence.

Or the guy who gives up article marketing (it wasn't working) to suddenly
become a copywriter. Talk about a shift in focus.

There are only so many hours in the day and you can't do everything.

So what's the answer? How do you avoid "shiny new toy syndrome"?

The answer is simple. It's called a business plan. You create one and you
stick with it, at least long enough to see whether or not it has any real

Jumping around from one thing to another just because it's "new" is a
recipe for disaster.

Yes, I am speaking from experience.

When I first started online in 2003 and didn't have a brain in my head, I
did, in no special order, all of these things.

Paid to read emails
Posting ads for pay
Safelist blasting
FFA blasting
Traffic exchanges
HYIP (before I knew they were illegal)

I never stuck with one thing. I was always looking for the shiny new toy
that was going to give me push button riches.

Finally, I got into freelancing (writing articles for pay) and never looked
back as that took me to article marketing and eventually creating my own

So be honest with yourself if not with me. Do you suffer from "shiny new
toy syndrome"?

If you do, it might be time to stop the madness, work on a definite plan and
stick with it long enough to see if there is validity to that plan.

I think they call it patience.

Yeah, I like shiny new toys too.

But I don't throw the old ones out if they're still playable.
#shiny #suffer #syndrome #toy
  • Profile picture of the author JohnMcCabe
    Excellent point, Steve. I don't know anything about this card game of yours, but I do know people who need wheels on their tackle boxes because they load in every new lure that comes out. Eventually, they bury the lures that have worked for them in the past. You can recognize these people easily because they spend more time tying on new lures than they do fishing.

    There's a flip side to watch out for, though. Some anglers use the same lure for everything, regardless of the conditions or the target species. If the fish aren't hitting on their lure of choice, they proclaim that it was 'just one of those days'. The fact that the guy in the next boat loaded a cooler using a different bait doesn't matter, the fish just weren't biting.

    In IM terms, you see people that insist that SEO is the only way to generate traffic. Or you could as easily substitute the words listbuilding, PPC, PLR, or whatever. It doesn't matter if someone else is hitting it large using a different method, they won't even look.

    I believe that, in the long run, a strategy like yours will be the winner. Stick mainly with what you know, and blend in new stuff after you've had a chance to analyze the chances of it working for you.
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  • Profile picture of the author Mike Tyler
    Really great post! I compleltly find myself in what you write. Yea, I had the "Shiny New Toy Syndrome" for several years actually. Always looking for the newest "guru" system and method. So just months ago i couldn't take it anymore, so i settled down and started writing my first eBook.

    Today I only do article marketing for bring traffic and generating bucks online. And it works really great! No need for no dumb new toy when i have my old articles

    Mike Tyler.

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    • Profile picture of the author ShaunAllen

      I guess I've made it so to speak. Meaning, Frank Kern sent out an e-mail to the tune of BREAKING NEWS- My 26 Million Dollar Secret Revealed, and I didn't even open it.

      I am not saying that you can't learn a lot from Frank or any other marketer, I am sure it was a great e-mail with lots of content.

      However, I've found out that I get more out of staying focused on my plan rather than opening up every email with a shiny new gadget, which ultimately leads to not getting any results.

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  • Profile picture of the author thadbong
    I've found that Shiny New Toy Syndrome normally strikes when you're feeling like what you're doing "doesn't work". In other words, it's not nearly as easy as you thought it was, you're not making money nearly as fast as you thought you would and you're just generally feeling crap about it.

    I've found that during these periods, it's best to close that little tab to the WSO area, avoid opening all "hype" driven emails and just chill.

    Newbies don't make $2,950.12 in their first 12 hours, there's no gravity defying new platform online and you sure as heck aren't going to reach your all your goals in the next 5 minutes.

    If you're feeling vulnerable, I find that it just helps to talk to someone close to you and try to verbalize what it is that you're actually worried about.

    If you feel like you absolutely gotta have that "shiny new toy", then close the window, keep your credit card in your wallet and wait at least 24 hours before thinking about it again.

    That's what helps me overcome my dark urges.
    Commodity Code Review - Latest Automated Gold Trading Software Launch Coming Soon!
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  • Profile picture of the author Rod Cortez
    When I first started online in 2003 and didn't have a brain in my head, I
    did, in no special order, all of these things.

    You know you're opening yourself up to some funny remarks with that one don't you? <Resisting the urge>

    In all seriousness, when I first got started circa 1998-99, I definitely had the shiny new object syndrome. During the first 6 months of my IM career, ha ha, I made a total of zero, zip, zilch, nada, the big FAT doughnut (or donut for you texters out there!).

    I jumped from one thing to the next. I literally would leave websites half finished because I saw something else that I thought would make me money faster. I didn't realize at the the time that I was literally killing my business because I wasn't focusing on one thing at time and not building momentum.

    Having a plan is only half the battle, having the focus and wherewithal to avoid obvious distractions is the other half.

    D "Coffee-Keeps-Me-Distracted!" Cortez
    "Your personal philosophy is the greatest determining factor in how your life works out."
    - Jim Rohn
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  • Profile picture of the author WebPen
    This is a great way to explain what happens when you jump from one idea to the next.

    I have to admit that I have jumped around a lot, and I think a lot of marketers have. The problem is, it's the specialists that really succeed.

    I think the best way to do it is start as a specialist (focusing on one thing like SEO or PPC and aff. marketing) and end up as the general (product vendor with tons of affiliates for example)
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