Understanding Marketing: 3 Marketing Reality Checks
- Alden Tan
Do you want to make money online?
I know a lot of us do.
It’s the dream of earning good money via passive-income and then just writing and blogging about what you love every single day.
Now, if you were like me, the start of the journey was really good.
The feeling of inspiration was practically overwhelming! I had my idea and I wanted to bring it to the world – and make tons of money while I was at it.
Heck, I even thought the setbacks I would face would be something I could handle confidently and easily.
Does that sound familiar?
You know it will take some hard work, of course. It’s going to be a tough journey. The road ahead always seems a little foggy as you set out with your online business or your blog. You know you’re on the path to worldwide recognition – maybe you can’t see the edges too clearly, but you have confidence that you’ll figure it out, and achieve even your wildest dreams.
It’s too bad dreams are far from reality.
My Own Reality Check from Danny Iny Himself
I’ve always wanted to make money with my blog. I have huge dreams for it.
This was my plan:
I would keep writing, which is all good since I love to write. I would gather traffic, gain subscribers then just apply a bunch of money-making techniques to start pulling in the big bucks. This was my plan to make money writing online.
That’s what most internet marketers and bloggers say, so what could go wrong?
This was my reality check:
I told the exact same plan to Danny.
He replied, “Alden, it’s a lot more than that. You want to create a sustainable business. What you’re trying to do is a scheme.”
That hit me like a truck.
Me? Schemes? That word made me sound like I was out to become one of those sleazy self-proclaimed gurus who wanted to make money through loopholes and manipulating naive people!
Your Dreams and Your Pride May be Getting in The Way of Your Success
I know mine did.
Now, having dreams and pride are necessary to achieving your goals, but unchecked, they can seriously hinder you.
Are you trying to make it on your own to the point of being stubborn?
Are you taking it too easy just because you think you have a strong character?
I find that a lot of us have trouble finding success online because we have a skewed understanding of marketing because of a lot of misconceptions about marketing online and even being successful.
Keep reading – I’ll explain more…
3 Marketing Misconceptions and the Reality Checks That Fix Them
Problem #1: Not Being Willing to Learn Age-Old Concepts Because you Feel They Don’t Apply to You.
Do you ever find yourself saying:
I didn’t see why I needed to learn about marketing, advertising, sales or business per se. I mean, what for? Shouldn’t I just learn about blogging-specific things? Or just tactics for my niche? I’m too busy to learn a lot of useless stuff.
Reality check: The timeless concepts are timeless for a reason.
So don’t dismiss them just because marketing your business is not just about social media, blogging or the latest tips for Twitter. Foundational knowledge about human nature and how it responds to stimulus matters!
Solution: Read as much as you can on marketing and business. Whatever free eBooks and courses offered by successful bloggers, “old” books you can borrow from the library, just get them all and absorb. Even though they don’t apply to your field directly, just read.
Bonus: Personally, I was always very reluctant to take certain actions on my blog because I was afraid to fail.
And I always needed someone successful to literally tell me, “Okay, go ahead”.
These books and courses gave me the green light and confidence.
Why? Because after reading so much, they all boil down to the same principles. You will come across the same thing A LOT. Trust me on this. Books are free, virtual mentors.
Problem #2: Wanting to Try Only Methods Which Will Make you Money Quickly
Does it annoy you that successful people teach you things that don’t exactly make you money instantly? These things always seem to be only good in the long run and they kind of make you go, “Well, duh.”
Reality check: You need a strategy, not a bunch of tactics!
You really do.
That’s why successful people emphasize on the importance of “long term” techniques which will help you all the way.
Wanting to learn about quick, money-making tips is trying to be good with schemes and tactics. They will not work out as a successful business.
Solution: Get your system in place first.
Basically, a business, online or not, is where you actually have something to sell or recommend to potential customers.
Without it, you aren’t going to make any money.
Learn and apply all the things successful people teach. Follow what they do even though it seems like it’s not going to make you any money today or tomorrow. It won’t. That’s okay. And you need to be okay with that.
Once you know how your own system for making money works, you can work out a strategy to execute it! THEN, and only then, you can apply all the tactics you want to polish this system!
A long term strategy will definitely provide you with the clarity you need to create a real business online. Without it, you will be that lost fish which gets attracted to some questionable bait (schemes by “gurus” which promise you to make money fast).
Problem #3: Not Willing to Spend Money Before you Make Money
Since making money is your main aim, why should you spend right?
Tons of successful people out there talk about having low startup costs. So there’s no good reason you should spend more than the absolute minimum to get started yourself.
Guess what? By being penny-wise and pound-foolish in this way, you may end up missing out on valuable opportunities that could make or break your business.
Reality check: Investing even before you make money can provide you with extremely high value.
It really is okay to spend before you make money. Especially if you’ve been trying out different ideas to make money but failing.
I personally only started making real progress when I decided to pay for a Borrow Your Brain session with Danny Iny, who taught me about the importance of getting subscribers. Before that, I was just writing about random crap every day in hopes of getting traffic. That initial investment in training was invaluable.
The same can be true for all kinds of different trainings, as well as for services like designers, split-testers, programmers – you name it! If something isn’t your strongest talent – consider investing in learning more about it, or taking on help doing it.
Solution: Invest in a good program or mentor.
Be willing to spend!
It’s good that you’re hungry for knowledge and always willing to learn, but you could be in danger of learning the wrong things which will set you off course.
So, what’s wrong with spending some money on training that will guide you exactly where you want to go?
I’d strongly encourage you to either a) Invest in a course online which teaches you about marketing or business. Make sure to check if it’s offered by someone who has a strong audience base which can vouch for their reputation. Testimonials alone don’t mean much – look for engaged audiences.
Or b) get a mentor. You just need to know the difference between a mentor and a coach.
A mentor is someone who has been through your exact path and is sincere in wanting you to succeed, whereas a coach is just equipped to teach some skills and techniques which may or may not apply to you directly. The coach, after being paid will just go on his way.
Really, don’t be afraid to spend first. It can save you a lot of time, and prevent you from making common business mistakes, and help you have a better understanding of marketing.
These are marketing misconceptions that affect – if not everyone, then a huge majority of people when they’re first starting out.
I know – I fell victim to all of them, and it took time, self-scrutiny and good mentorship to figure it out.
From one new online business owner to another: this all may seem hard at first, but as you keep learning, things will start to click and it will start to get easier.
Don’t be like me, someone who was reluctant to invest first and also took pride in the fact that I was tenacious enough to try everything and anything …
… and hope something good would happen eventually.
Well, hope is not a strategy.
I had my wake-up call pretty late. Do yourself a favor today by getting your basics right.
Get reality-checked and get a proper understanding of marketing.