I sometimes get asked for how to get started in Internet Marketing. I find it very flattering and then I sit back and ask “why me?”. I’m still figuring it all out so I sometimes don’t feel I’m the perfect person to answer such questions. But, since I’m doing well at it I going to share some advice.
So what are the things I wished I had know when I first started?
First I don’t think the term Internet Marketer is appropriate. The successful “Internet Marketers” that I know look like authors and producers. They use Internet Marketing techniques. Look at yourself as a producer, marketing director of your company that happens to use “Internet Marketing” techniques.
Knowing everything doesn’t matter. If you don’t know how to create a website hire someone. Don’t worry about the technical know how. Focus on marketing. Don’t worry about reinventing anything. Do what works. Thinks in term on streamlining your processes and then focus on a few things at a time. Then focus on crushing those items.
Don’t worry about being “original”. Accept that almost all fundamental ideas come from human experiences. You are going to create something completely new. Life is about culture and what you’re doing to make your own commentary on the human experience. You can’t be “original” but your commentary will be yours. Your style is what you can use if you get into a creative rut and your stuff starts to look the same. And don’t worry about a creative rut if you are happy doing it.
Understand what you like and be completely honest with yourself. What you are creating is going to be personal, powerful and effective if it is based on what you take interest in, enjoy or what bugs you. Be able to say “if you don’t like it, go **** yourself”. I know that is a bit harsh but everything you come out with will have people that hate it. And the more popular you are the more it will happen. Look at it as a sign, a very good sign. Be fearless.
If you are creating for someone else as a work-for-hire situation ignore everything I’ve said. Do what gets paid. Tell your client they are the smartest person in the world. Do what you care about on your own dime.
Don’t go crazy about your hardware, software or systems. Grow as your business grows. Some people debate which word processor is best for creating an e-book. Don’t spend your time worrying about it and instead focus on creating product and marketing. You’ll soon realize that it doesn’t matter very much.
Time spent experimenting with different marketing techniques will save you millions of dollars. A lot of time you can figure something out by experimenting. Almost everything has been researched someplace before. Just remember to change one thing at a time and experiment to see what works best. Experiment on products that won’t embarrass yourself. Keep them separate from your real work until your comfortable with your results.
Make one million mistakes and you will notice more and more great results. There is a huge correlation between many products your create and/or market and your success. Use research and experiments to direct yourself and get there faster.
Go back and forth between experimenting and doing and studying. I learn a lot on my own. I’ve gone to a few seminars and learned a lot. I think the combination is ideal.
Be a little wary of Internet Marketers that sell Internet Marketing products. Many of them make all of their money from selling Internet Marketing products and none from actually doing Internet Marketing. There are many that do well in both. Pick a guru or two to follow. If a product they come out with doesn’t make you excited don’t get it. If their emails become boring or worse piss you off get off their list. Don’t follow too many people. It can be overwhelming so focus.
When you are working, understand what you are doing in relation to the theory you are using. When studying think of when you have seen that problem when you were working. Know what you are doing and why. It works much better than randomness and getting lucky.
When you see someone come out with a product ask yourself how they did it. Don’t go “wow” and believe you can’t do the same thing. And don’t feel like you’re stealing someone’s idea if you try the technique yourself. Just ask yourself “how did they do that?” and come up with answers.