What I’ve Learned Online – 5 Important Lessons

What i've learned online 5 lessoonsIn last Mondays post I said that I wanted to do a mega post for my 50th birthday which is on Sunday July 1st and asked for suggestions, I had a couple of really good ones and I’ll try to merge them together in this post.

This post will hopefully give you some background about how I got to where I am am today and where I see myself and IM a few years down the line and what I’ve learned along the way… Grab a coffee sit back and enjoy!

When I first started in the IM Business my aim was just to make an income from creating Adsense sites, I quickly realized that that is a pretty medium term business as it takes time to get the income coming in so I started to build sites for others. By spending 4 or 5 hours a day creating websites for $10 a time I was able to quickly earn enough to live on.

It wasn’t high paid work but it generated cash which is what I needed at the time. Once the sites I built for myself started to earn a good income I was able to reduce and finally stop providing services to others.  This taught me my first lesson.

Lesson 1.  

A solid Internet Marketing Business consists of a Long term plan , a short term plan and a medium term plan…There is no Magic Button

Because I lacked a lot of cash when I started I couldn’t afford to invest in many tools so I had to learn how to do things manually, keyword research, link building etc. because I was able to focus on the jobs I had to do I wasn’t looking for the next big thing, I still talk to people who started out at the same time as me in 2005 and they are still trying to find that magic button.  Justin Wheeler used a term last week that sums this syndrome up perfectly ASOD  “Attention Deficit Oooooh Shiny”.

I get emails everyday promoting the next best thing I need to have, If I don’t open them for 2 days then there is something better waiting for me! If you see an email for something you need there and then or within the next 24 hours consider it, if not make do with what you already have.

Lesson 2 

Focus on what you have, every cent you spend on a new shiny product is one more cent you need to earn to make a profit…There is no Magic Button

I got quite lucky with the sites I build and was soon earning over $4000 a month with Adsense, and a similar amount with product sales, life was good…Then google slapped me so hard that I woke up in the 18th Century.  Overnight they almost killed my niche site business. My income dropped to 10% of what it was. To many of you this sounds familiar but we aren’t talking about Panda or Penguin, this was back in 2006. Google slaps are nothing new to those of us who have been in IM for any length of time. You just need to deal with them and move on.

Lesson 3 

Any business that relies on 1 source of traffic for an income is a disaster waiting to happen… There is no Magic Button

I was actually quite lucky as I had suspected that google wouldn’t allow things to remain the way they were so I had diversified and I had started creating products. I learned the basics by working as an Intern for a mad old school Internet marketer who shall remain nameless at this point in time. As a result of what I learned I was able to create my own product and sell 100 or so copies. For a first product that didn’t have the benefit of a marketplace like the Warrior Forums “WSO’s ” this was a revelation to me and I knew it was what I wanted to do. After that the rest is pretty much the same, I’ve focused on creating useful products that will help people do the stuff that I’ve found I needed.

Lesson 4.

Mastermind Groups and Mentoring can provide a short cut to success but like everything you need to be prepared to work at it and follow instruction… There is no Magic Button

Mistakes

The biggest mistake that I’ve made in my time online was to think I could be successful without building a list, The 2nd biggest mistake was thinking that I needed a big list , Nothing could be further from the truth. With the right kind of list building and the right approach to your list you can make a very good living with a small list.  I’ve spent most of the last 6 months reducing a list of around 10,000 to under 3000 and I’d still like to get it lower.

Another mistake I’ve made is not playing to my strengths, until recently i’ve tried to do everything, product creation, marketing, sales copy, getting JV partners etc. This is the wrong way to do things as no one is a master of everything. I’ve recently started to focus on what I do best which is Product creation. The last product I created was marketed by someone else and I just took a percentage of the income, this resulted in one of my most profitable products and it only took me a fraction of the work it normally does.

I am currently working on another product and when it’s complete I will probably look for a partner to market it for me.

Lesson 5 

 Play to your strengths, and outsource everything else… There is no Magic Button!

The Future

That brings us pretty much up to date so I think that I’ll finish off by talking about what my future plans are;

The first thing I want to focus on for the next few months is to build up my Facebook presence , it’s something that I’ve ignored but I’ve recently seen how powerful it’s been, by the time this post is live I hope to have hired a social media manager.

Sites like Facebook, Pinterest and Google Plus are going to be more important over the coming months and years. I mentioned in a previous post that I’ve managed to reduce my organic traffic from google from over 35% of my total visitors to under 10% which at the same time trebling my traffic by “dabbling” with social media I would love to remove google search from the equation completely.

I’m not saying that Facebook is any better than google but they are more open about what they want.  They want us to pay a small amount to have our posts seen by more people, thats fine by me. If google said they want me to pay $50 a month to rank for a particular keyword then I would be happy to do that.

My new social media campaign starts here…please feel free to go to http://www.facebook.com/MarkThompsonIM  and click on like, I’ll be posting a useful tip on there on a daily basis so you don’t need to wait for a blog post.(you can also share any of the posts there if you like them or comment… it all helps!)

Thank you for all your support over the past few years, I wouldn’t be where I am today without your support and I will never forget that.

Finally if you like the regular monday tips section as it’s my 50th birthday I’ve taken over 50% off the price of my last WSO for the weekend. It was released a few months back and it’s contains over 100 useful internet marketing tips from myself and other marketers.

IM Braindump 50% Off 

I can assure you that all income from sales will go towards Playing Golf and a massive party on Saturday evening :)

Have a Great weekend… I know I will!!!

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