“Internet Marketing is Full of Rock Stars”
Living large, making millions, and confident they can teach you how to do the same for just $27.
Yeah, I know, you’re already jaded enough not to buy into this pipedream any more. And yet there is still a great hunger among aspiring entrepreneurs to understand what it takes to make a success of their Internet business.
This frustrates me!
I don’t have a particular problem with gurus packaging and selling their knowledge but what I do object to is the all too prevalent idea that the key to successful Internet business is some closely guarded secret that only a precious few have unlocked.
As if online business is some great mystery that only the elite can understand.
Well, here’s what they’re not telling you and I’m only too happy to share:
Online business and offline business is, for all intents and purposes, EXACTLY the same thing.
The only difference is the platform. The Internet is just a different, albeit slightly weird, location.
Insisting that there is some mystical secret to doing business on the Internet is like saying that you may know how to run a deli in New York, but you’ll fail if you try to open a second store in Chicago. There may be some slight differences in clientele, but people’s desire to exchange money for food is pretty much universal.
Consider, for a moment, McDonalds, a corporation whose crowning achievement is its ability to serve as a useful example in virtually every conceivable business illustration or metaphor (a feat that only Apple comes close to matching).
Is there a country in the world that McDonald’s has failed to crack? Does the venue or platform seem to make any difference to their success?
Of course not. Some adjustments to the menu are typical (restaurants in India, for instance, don’t serve beef burgers – only chicken and vegetarian patties), but their system for quickly and efficiently delivering food and drink with a sizeable profit margin, works virtually anywhere that people have money to spend on take-out.
Internet business principles are the same as offline business principles. It’s virtually all transferrable.
The reason I consider this truism to be a big deal is because most people approach Internet business in a completely different way, making decisions that they would never make in the real world.
Take the subject of “outsourcing,” for example. This strategy is often touted as one of these great secrets to Internet business success as if it’s some kind of revolutionary idea.
But if you think about it, hiring other people to do the jobs that are outside of your expertise is and has always been standard business practice.
If you open a shop, you hire people to decorate the interior, and install the electrics and deliver the merchandise. You don’t try and do everything yourself.
Even a lone guy on a corner, shining shoes, doesn’t manufacture his own brushes, brew his own shoe polish or publish his own newspapers for patrons to read.
Outsourcing aspects of your Internet business isn’t a modern concept, it’s how business has always worked.
And it’s the only way you’ll truly be able to build your online empire.
This is the message that I really want you to grasp. Stop viewing your Internet business as some puzzle to be solved. Simply view it as a business and you’ll find that a lot of your quandaries and roadblocks melt away.
Start by reviewing all the work that you perform and figure out which parts are CORE work (jobs that require your personal expertise) and which parts are MECHANICS work (jobs that someone else can perform on your behalf, possibly with more skill than you possess).
This might take a bit of a mental shift. Hiring a handyman to fix a leaky roof is obvious, hiring a coder to fix a bug in your shopping cart system is less so.
You’ll need to train yourself to recognize tasks that can be passed along but once you start to see how much time and effort you’re saving you’ll quickly find the motivation and commitment to continue.
And be prepared to think outside the box.
Typing an email reply, for example, might seem like a quick job but if the email is more than a few paragraphs long it’s usually faster and easier to record your message and send the audio directly. Or
send the audio to your assistant and have them turn it into a well-written and carefully proofread email.
This might only save you a couple of minutes but multiply that by 10 emails a day and you’re looking at a saving of 120 hours per year. If you work 8 hours a day then that’s two additional weeks a year that you can spend focusing on your CORE jobs.
Some people are amazed by the above concept but I can’t claim any originality here. Busy executives have, for decades, been replying to letters by speaking into a Dictaphone and giving the recording to their secretary to type up.
At the risk of sounding repetitive, the Internet hasn’t changed successful business principles; it’s simply a new location.
And the above idea is also a good example of how CORE job and MECHANICS jobs can become mixed up.
Replying to important emails is absolutely a CORE job because you want to make sure that your responses accurately represent your thoughts and position. But typing the email out and checking it for spelling mistakes is MECHANICS that someone else can do for you.
Put aside some time today to review your “to do” list. If you’re doing any MECHANICS work, outsource it or hand it over to one of your existing employees.
But check your CORE work as well by breaking it down into components and you’ll find it possible to create systems that allow you to perform CORE tasks in less time and with greater focus.
You know real rock stars that tour the world and sell out stadiums have personal assistants and roadies and drivers. If you want to be an Internet rock star then the principle is the same; put together an entourage and free up your time to focus on what you’re really good at.