Monthly Archives: March 2012

7 Tips a 10 Year Old Child Can Give You about Marketing

Things you can learn from a 10 year old about marketingBack when I was ten years old, the world was a much simpler place. Cell phones came in brief cases, an iPhone was a phone you had your eye on and marketing often meant putting together a simple flyer on my dad’s copy machine.

However, for all that times have changed radically since the 1980s, things have also stayed the same. Moreover, if you ask a ten year old about how to do marketing, whether it was then or now, they’re likely to offer you some great advice. Like this:

Embrace Technology

I used a Commodore 64 computer to type up my homework soon after I retired my electric typewriter with the LCD screen. I also built my own IBM-XT compatible computer. Why? Because I understood that these things were the wave of the future and I was right. By knowing about these things, I had a head start on building up a business.

These days, asking a ten year old kid about the hottest new trends in technology is still a great idea. Your ten year old can probably run circles around you on the computer and she can probably tell you everything you could possibly need to know about how to use that technology to get the word out about your products.

Of course, if you don’t happen to have a ten year old handy to ask about it, just check online to see what the latest trends are and try to use them (Pinterest for example is the rising star online, though not so much with the kids). You can also look at places like Google trends and even some popular Facebook pages. Go and search for pages which match you niche and which are popular and you can see what people are talking about.

Ask about Santa

Your ten year old kid may well still believe in Santa Clause and the Easter Bunny (well, maybe not – depends on how mature he is. But a five year old almost definitely would still believe in it). Now I’m not telling you that you’ve got to believe in Santa Clause or the Easter Bunny. However, believing in yourself and your ability to get things done is important.

In other words, just like your kid has faith that Santa will show up with presents to put under the tree every year, you need to believe that you will be able to do what needs to be done. I’ve often said that being a successful entrepreneur means being able to learn from and handle failure in an effective way. That means that you accept that you may well fail at a particular task, but ultimately, you’ll treat it as a learning experience.

In fact, many successful entrepreneurs were failures in their early efforts and only later managed to find their way to success. Even someone like Steve Jobs, one of my childhood heroes, was once considered an abysmal failure and has been. The thing is, he never stopped trying and never stopped believing in himself. So while you may no longer buy into the Santa story, you should at least believe in yourself.

Do Your Homework

How often have you told your kids that they need to do their homework before they get to watch TV? Okay, maybe you don’t have kids (I don’t), but you still know what I’m talking about. We humans tend to be a lazy bunch and we would prefer not to have to work hard and instead be able to play all day long. Sadly, it doesn’t work that way. As a kid, you had to do your homework or you would get into trouble and as an adult, you also need to do your homework or you’ll get into trouble.

So what do I mean by doing your homework? Well for starters, before you begin a new business, take the time to do the research. Find out what your competitors are offering and what they charge. See how saturated the market is before you decide to just jump into it head first. And do your keyword research. Assuming this is an online business, you’ll want to be optimized for keywords so that your SEO works well.

Now that you have your business running, your homework is just beginning. That blog of yours isn’t going to update itself. Your customers won’t show up at your website just because you pray to the gods of late night TV while you munch Doritos and drink a frosty can of Bud.

You need to do the work to get people to your website, which means that you build backlinks, you do SEO, you do the work of getting your name out there and you do the best job you know how to do. In other words, don’t just do your homework – aim for getting an A from the teacher. Don’t forget – the kids who get an A from the teacher often end up being the ones who make the most money in life.

Revel in Snow Days

As a ten year old kid, I and all my friends absolutely lived for the snow day – that day when the heavens dumped so much snow onto the ground that New York City (I grew up in New York) would shut down and we’d have a day off. We’d go out and make snowmen, throw snowballs and even try making makeshift sleds.

Now I’m not literally saying to look for snow days and hope you get out of going to “school” (i.e. working). Instead, what I’m saying is that you should enjoy those rare unexpected moments in life.

Whether it’s a sudden opportunity to get into a business which you didn’t think you might ever be interested in or it’s a chance at an actual snow day where you can take off one magical day from work and enjoy spending the time with your family, be prepared to do so. Don’t just fall into a rut and say that you’re not going to take advantage of these things because falling into a rut and not taking advantage of opportunities is the way that losers end up whining that they don’t get anywhere in life.

Try to Make Friends with the Popular Kids

I know it’s incredibly shallow of me to say this and I apologize a thousand times over to every single kid who has ever been bullied. I’m not literally saying that any kid should be so shallow as to think that their sense of self-worth needs to be attached to someone else’s coat tails. In fact, I believe exactly the opposite (I’m also a former school teacher and always despised the so called “popular” kids who would pick on a weak kid and torment him or her).

Now, that having been said, I did bring this up for a reason. Even though I believe this is the absolute wrong practice to follow in school, I believe this is very much the right practice to follow in life and especially online. In essence, you want to follow the trend setters and grab onto their coattails.

These are the big names in websites, the people who have already made it. They have something to teach you and they have name recognition to offer to your new business. So look for links from these places and look for opportunities to do joint ventures and to get yourself involved with them in any way you can. You can then ride their coattails to the top.

Be Yourself

Okay, this may sound like the antithesis of the advice immediately above, but I assure you that it isn’t. Well, not exactly. You see, just as there are many kids who try to ride someone else’s coattails to the top of the popularity ladder in school, there are also the kids who don’t care if they come off as sounding weird as long as they get to be themselves.

Now I’m not saying you have to be weird, though being funny does help a lot if your goal is to build yourself up and make some real money online. However, even as you are riding the coattails of someone else who is super popular all the way to the top of the rankings, you also need to consider how you will make yourself into an individual.

The fact is that neither Google nor your visitors will really want to see an exact copycat of whatever it is that someone else is doing. They’re going to want to see your new spin on an old concept so that you can then wow them and let them feel as if you have a reason to be noticed too. This means that you should be yourself even as you are trying to use others’ popularity to rise to the top.

Keeping Looking Forward

As a ten year old kid, I dreamt of the day when I would be a grownup and I also dreamt of the day when I’d graduate to junior high school and then high school, where the “big boys” were. As an adult, I try to always find things to look forward to even though I know that I no longer have the aspiration to become a “grown up” and I’m not particularly looking forward to the next major stage in my life (retirement, which is still distant, but as a middle aged man, it’s basically the next step).

On the other hand, just like the 10 year old kid who had dreams about the future, I still do have dreams about the future as well. I still have plans for myself and I know what I want to do with my life and my business. As a business owner, you should be making plans for your business and looking to “graduate” to the next “grade” by growing your business each and every year.

Best of luck to all of you and thank you for taking the time to stroll along memory lane with me while I looked back at childhood.

10 Warning Signs that You are Becoming an Online Marketing Addict

Online marketing addict

Incredible though it may seem, there are people who still believe that love makes the world go around (I personally know a few). But those of us who are practical know that the right answer is green. Not the environment silly, but dollars. And we meander through life trying to identify the best opportunities for adding to the good old bank balance.

But making money takes time and efforts and getting rich is not easy.

Having said that, you have to admit that the opportunities available today for making money are far more than a few years back, thanks to the internet. The internet is inundated with money making schemes that promise riches beyond dreams. While this is good in itself, the icing on the cake is the accompanying claim that ‘you don’t have to work hard for it’.

This practically amounts to having the cake and eating it too (icing and all). This is an offer surely no one can resist. So you can hardly be blamed for spending time on online marketing efforts in an attempt to earn money online.

Make money online schemes

 There are several schemes available for earning money online

But the question is, are you overdoing it? Unknown to yourself, you may have turned into an online marketing addict spending far more time and money on online marketing than any return you can ever expect. Like any addiction, it creeps on you slowly and before you know it you are hooked. And like any other addiction, the best way to get out of it (if you want to, that is) is to identify the signs and admit that you are one.

Find below 10 warning signs that you are becoming an online marketing addict.

 

  1. You feel happiest when you have signed in to a new online marketing scheme

You look at a new online marketing scheme as a fresh opportunity that has been given to you to make good the past losses you may have suffered in the online marketing arena. You have a glazed look in your eyes while explaining to anyone who cares to listen why this is THE scheme you have been waiting for all this while.

 

  1. You have created a separate email account for subscribing to online marketing alerts

You just cannot afford to miss any new online money making method or technique and you want to be informed of it at once. But when you found that your email inbox was getting overcrowded, you decided to create a separate email id just to receive latest online marketing alerts. It is a different story that this inbox is overcrowded too due to sheer number of sites you have subscribed to.

But you are at peace knowing all of them are ‘important’ and need to be read and you don’t have to ‘waste’ time filtering the mails.

 

  1. Your Friends and Relatives Complain you Don’t Respond to their Emails

Refer point no.2. You obviously don’t have time to read through personal emails.

 

  1. You Cannot Resist the Power of NOW

The word NOW, displayed on any online marketing site has an almost hypnotic effect on you.

Order now button

Are you unable to resist the lure of NOW?

When the site tells you, ‘order NOW to avail the best prices’ or ‘Buy NOW while stocks are available’, you just have to comply. Because if you don’t you know you will be haunted by a guilty complex that you let go of good thing and this opportunity will never ever come back.

 

  1. You Have a Master List of Online Marketing Keywords

You have spent so much time online searching for the best (and not so good) online marketing schemes that you know precisely which keywords to use to get the best results. And being the large hearted person that you are, you have put these together in a master list that you constantly update. This is for helping others who are interested in online marketing. You obviously don’t need the list as you know everything on it.

 

  1. You Know Your Credit Card Number by Heart

While lesser mortals have to refer to their credit cards to punch in the number to make an online payment, you have your credit card number memorized. Could it be due to the fact that you have used it so often while paying for the online marketing products, that the number has become etched in your mind?

Credit card numbers

Do you know your 16 digit credit card number by heart?

Or perhaps it is just that you have a great memory. The latter is most likely, what say?

 

  1. You are Running Out of Space to Store your Online Marketing Products

Your room (or spare room or garage) is getting full with products that are shipped to you after purchase. Ideally, you have to sell them (or distribute or promote) to earn money (and free up the personal space). But you are so busy researching and studying the next big online marketing idea that you tend to overlook this tiny detail and never get around to it.

 

  1. Your Spouse Refers to the Computer as the ‘Other Woman/Man’

Given the limited time you spend with the family, your spouse (after substantial relief that you are not having an affair over the internet with some exotic foreigner) makes snide remarks about computer snatching you away. While you convince the spouse that you are doing this only for the family (you are earning money for them, right?), you are secretly pleased that your spouse actually misses you.

Computer addicts

If the girl in the picture above reminds you of “you”, we have bad news for you.

 

  1. You become Philosophical about Life and Failure

You find yourself making philosophical comments about how life is not always about winning, but the fact that one has tried his or her best. This could be related to your inability to make money on most of the online marketing schemes you dipped your hands in. But what is funny is that this philosophy does not seem very attractive while dealing with your son’s poor school grades!

 

  1. You Become an Expert Niche Writer

In that rare moment, when there is no new online marketing scheme to occupy your attention and you don’t have any personal mails to respond to (probably because people stopped emailing you a long time back), you may get an inspiration to blog about your online marketing experiences.

Given your in-depth and personal knowledge in this area, the words will flow in an uninterrupted deluge, producing a highly informative blog post. And before you know it, you may get so many hits and views that you become an expert niche writer with followers hanging on to your every word and even consulting with you before making any online marketing decision.

And we know highly popular blogs are great revenue earners.

So is this a positive effect of your online marketing addiction? Perhaps, but there is no guarantee that will happen to you, is there?

Did you recognize any of these signs in yourself? Are there any signs I have missed? Or do you feel there is really no such thing as an ‘online marketing’ addiction. Anything and everything, let me know by way of your comments.

 

 

 

10 Principles You Need To Follow to Make a 6-figure Online Income

Greedy millionaire

I’m going to share a massive secret with you right here and right now. You want to know how to make a six figure income online? Don’t be a jerk. Yep — that’s it. You can continue to read because I’ll share lots of other useful ideas, but that first one is by far the biggest and most important thing you can do if you are determined to make real money online.

Really — Don’t Be a Jerk

Think about this for a moment and you’ll realize why this is so vitally important. Sure, you could come up with some kind of killer idea and sell it to people online, but if you act like a complete jerk and don’t support your customers and or don’t stand by the people who helped you, then you’ll ultimately find that you’ll be a failure.

You may succeed in the short term, but in the long term, you’ll find doors increasingly being shut and you’ll find that you can’t sustain that six figure income for long (if indeed you ever got there to begin with). Okay, so that’s my golden rule. Now, here are nine other really useful ideas which really will help you to make that six figure income online:

Be a Lifetime Learner

Just because you left school behind long ago doesn’t mean that you don’t have anything left to learn. The fact is that the world is constantly changing around us and the online world is changing even faster. If you are determined to earn that six figure income online, then you really need to be the sort of person who finds new ideas fascinating. Otherwise, you risk being permanently left behind when things change.

By the way, being a lifetime learner has other advantages too. I explore this more fully in another upcoming blog post about being a great writer, but the fact is that if you constantly keep your eyes open and learn new things, then you are that much more likely to come up with great ideas for products and ways to sell them.

Plus, lifetime learners also tend to stave off senility more because they exercise their brains so that when others have started to forget things, they’re still sharp because their minds are used to learning new things and constantly needing to stay sharp.

Take the Time to Enjoy Life

No, this isn’t just a question of not overworking and never enjoying the fruits of your labor, though that’s important too. The fact is that the human body can only handle so much stress at any given time and if you are constantly pushing yourself to do more without ever allowing yourself to rest, you will eventually find that the quality of the work you are able to do will deteriorate.

 

So take the time to enjoy life once in a while so that you are able to stay sharp for work (not to mention that if you do earn that six figure income and never give yourself the opportunity to spend the money, then there would be little point in having made the money anyway).

Don’t Fear Failure

As I’ve said in the past here, Thomas Edison famously showed off notebook upon notebook of ideas which failed in his efforts to create a practical electric light bulb (he didn’t actually create the electric light — that was done years before. He just made a way to create one which was practical with a soft light).

When asked whether or not he ever felt discouraged by having failed so often, Edison said “of course not — I was thrilled to have found 2,000 ways not to make an electric light.” I’m paraphrasing a bit, but the point here is this: if you want to succeed in anything in life, then failure is likely to be part of succeeding. The question is whether or not you are able to pick yourself up and get back to work after you find that the idea you are pursuing just isn’t working.

Try to Help Your Customers, Not Yourself

This kind of goes back to my golden rule — don’t be a jerk. In essence, if you really want to make money online, thinking only about how you can make money is not going to do the job. You want to think about how you can help your customers. When your customers are getting the help they need, they’ll gladly pay you for it. However, when they sense that you don’t care about them at all but only care about their money, they’ll walk away and look elsewhere for the help they need.

Never Leave a Man Behind

This is the motto of the US armed forces and it should be the motto of everyone who wants to make a six figure income online. This again goes back to what I said earlier — don’t be a jerk about stuff. By shafting people and leaving them behind to take the fall, you’ll ultimately find that you are just shooting yourself in the foot. Few truly successful people are able to stomp on everyone forever. Eventually, they simply run out of people to stomp on.

Don’t Burn Your Bridges

I know — it can be immensely tempting to tell your old boss exactly what you think of him when you leave your job and finally start working full time on your Internet marketing business. Or to tell that difficult client why you hate his guts and wish he would just drop dead. However, this is never a good idea. Try to remain calm and end things as diplomatically as you can.

You never know when you’ll need to call that person, either to offer them your services as a consultant or to ask them to help you out with something they know something about but which you know nothing about.

Say What You Mean and Mean What You Say

Nobody likes double speak. It just makes it that much harder to get things done. Now I realize that there are those who think that by lying to people they’ll get ahead in life, but I am a firm believer that telling the truth is far more important than that and will have its own rewards.

Plus, when you tell the truth and you make sure that you are clear about what you mean, you are more likely to get the results that you want from your employees since they are able to better understand just what it is that you need done. So take the time to tell people what you’re thinking (although do be diplomatic about it) rather than hiding or assuming people understand your hidden meaning. They often don’t.

Keep Your Personal Situation In Mind

If you really can’t afford to drop an extra $500 to buy into the latest and greatest craze that you happened to have seen online, then don’t do it. Don’t just say “oh to heck with it — I’d be crazy not to get in on this.” You need to keep your own situation in mind. Plus, by doing so, it’s likely that you’ll have second thoughts about rash decisions that you may otherwise make.

It’s also useful to remember that you need to be concerned not just with yourself but also with the people that you love. If you have a family to support, do you really want to be dropping your kid’s college tuition money on a bet? So yes, take risks, but be sensible about it.

Put Time Aside to Meet New People

Yes, your business is important and yes, you need to ensure that you spend time building your business. However, meeting new people (i.e. networking and also meeting people who may have other ideas for making money) is also an important part of actually building that six figure income.

After all, you can’t make money if you don’t have customers and if all you ever do is sell to the same people over and over again, you’ll eventually find that they’ve purchased whatever it is that you happen to have for sale and have no desire to make any additional purchases from you. So do take the time to network, meet new people and get yourself out of your comfort zone once in a while. You never know after all where that next big idea will come from.

Bottom Line

The bottom line though is that it all comes down to my golden rule — don’t be a jerk. If you treat others with dignity and respect and try your best to do the right thing, they’ll reward you by buying whatever you happen to have to sell them and they’ll even thank you for it.

by EricHammer, on       4 comments