Gotta love the Internet marketing Guru’s, right? Us newbies look to them for tutorials, up-to-date industry happenings, and everything related to making money online – and we trust their words as much as they trust our wallets. Now don’t get me wrong, I’m sure we’ve all learned some valuable information from the John Chow’s and the Shoemoney’s of the blogosphere, but did you ever stop and think “Why the hell would they be telling me everything I need to know? Wouldn’t that create more competition for themselves?”
Call me paranoid, call me delusional, or tell me I smell of cheap scotch and aftershave – but don’t tell me the thought has never crossed your mind.
Throughout this absurd and exhausting quest for financial independence I’ve absorbed approximately 24 ebooks (I just counted), The Four Hour Work Week and a slew of special reports and make money email courses. While a handful proved to be uber-resourceful – like Yaro Starak’s Blog Profits Blueprint or Ken Envoy’s Affiliate Masters course – the majority of them were bland and lacked innovation.
So what have I learned you ask? Let me break it down and save all you guys starting out a shit-load of time – here are the 10 Facts Internet Marketing Guru’s Won’t Tell You:
- You will not make any money within the first 24 hours – I don’t care what auto list-building software you just bought, or how many ads you put up on Craigslist, If you’ve never made money online and have no experience you will NOT make money over night. Plain and simple.
- Site builder programs are a single tool within your toolbox – While programs like Build A Niche Store and XSitePro 2 are great weapons to have in your affiliate arsenal, they are merely tools to be used in conjunction with the core elements such as keyword research, list building and search engine optimization. If you ever run across a sales page claiming to have the one program you will ever need to make money online, it’s a lie – because there is no such thing!
- Affiliate networks will drop you if you under achieve – Surprised? Don’t be. Commission Junction dropped my butt about 2 weeks ago because I didn’t generate enough “revenue” to keep their advertisers satisfied – and rightfully so. The last thing you want to do is sign up for every major affiliate network because you’ll spread yourself too thin, and if you’re just starting out that will do nothing except crowd your inbox and give you a false sense of urgency. Start out with one or two networks, find your groove and duplicate.
- Clickbank is 90% garbage – There I said it. While there are some great info products with killer landing pages provided, the majority of products sold on Clickbank are poorly developed and outdated. I know we’re all told to go with the products that have a high gravity score, but I much prefer the “would I buy this” or the “do I like this landing page” approach. Choose your products by putting yourself in your customers shoes, and if you like what you see there’s a good chance other people will too.
- You will loose money with PPC before you make anything – Now my experience with pay per click is limited, so take this point with a grain of salt, but I know at least 3 full-time Internet marketers who will back what I’m saying here. PPC is competitive and requires deep keyword research, constant testing, and a significant investment to generate a substantial return. I’ve heard some horror stories of people blowing their kids college fund on PPC with only a few hundred bucks to show for it. Start off small, take your time and more importantly – go with your gut!
- Obscure keywords are useless – I’m not going to cover this in great detail, but after you’re done reading this post, and sharing your valid opinion 🙂 please stop by my friend Alan’s Affiliate Confession blog and read this post. He covers this exact point perfectly and I couldn’t have put it better.
- An autoresponder is absolutely necessary – I’m sure you’ve all heard the saying “the money is in the list” and in many cases this is the absolute truth. As aspiring Internet marketers, one of our ultimate goals should be to eventually launch our own course or product that will provide us with a long term reoccurring source of income. The only way to do this properly is by building a list, and the key to successful list building is automation – this is where autoresponder services come in. Regardless of what the Guru’s say, you need to be building lists from each and every blog or niche site you own, and though products like Aweber or GetResponse may seem pricey, they are absolutely necessary for residual success.
- You need HTML, CSS and basic graphics/photo editing skills – I fully understand with sites like eLance.com and ScriptLance.com we have the ability to outsource a lot of our grueling and time consuming tasks like building landing pages or creating custom opt-in forms, but the fact of reality is that most of us don’t have the know-how or finances to even go about doing this – especially when we’re first starting out. I’m a firm believer in the “teach a man to fish” saying and share that same mentality when it comes to developing any craft. Take some time to learn the basics of HTML, CSS and Adobe Photoshop and you will be in a much better position as the months go by (you will also have more skills and services that you could charge people for).
- Joint ventures bring in the big dollars – If you type in Mass Control Million into Google you will find over 5,000,000 results yapping about Frank Kern’s Mass Control launch and how it generated over 23.8 million dollars in 24 hours – pretty unbelievable right? Frank is a genius and an innovator in this industry, but what he won’t tell you is that the only way he was able to generate that much income in such a short amount of time was primarily due to strong joint venture connections with HUGE lists of hungry affiliates. It’s the only way any launch of that magnitude could exist. Make your connections early on, go with your instinct and stick with individuals whom you connect with on a personal level. If that person lands a JV opportunity with an industry player down the road, you are now in the pocket to reap those benefits and vice versa. Individually we are vulnerable, but in numbers we are a force to be reckoned with. The power by numbers rule.
- It will take 6 months to a year before you can quit your job – This fact isn’t set in stone, but I know you know what I’m saying. For the average John or Jane simply gripping the basics of making money online will take 3 to 6 months minimum, and then follows the 3 to 6 months of trial and error, research, and development. The first time most of us type “make money online” or “work at home” into Google is because we’re currently at a job, or in a financial position that we are not happy with. Learning the ropes usually occurs on a part-time basis which will increase the amount of time before the implementation stage takes place. In my case I was fired from a job and had Veronica holding down the fort until I found a replacement gig – which gave me 6-8 hours a day to learn what I know now, therefor speeding up the process of learning.
Set goals for yourself, be realistic and treat this opportunity like any other business. If you are looking to get rich quick you’ll be disappointed to discover that your dreams of fast cars and Peruvian hookers are often interrupted by episodes of insomnia and countless hours of hard work. Guru’s are great, but common sense is better. Any points I missed that you guys would like to add? I’d love to hear some of your experiences.