10 Things Internet Marketers Don't Want You to Know
Sooooooo business sucks, right?
So many clients are stressed, stuck in comparison and just feel like shit about themselves because even though business is something you have to be in for the long haul. If you go to a typical business site, you’ll see a woman sipping Pina Coladas and eating avocados while doing yoga and talking about how it all happened in just 6 months.
Business success often feels like a hot guy (or girl) that just sits on your couch looking hot, but anytime you try to go near, a force field blasts you across the room like that force field from Catching Fire.
How did having a business go from something organic that just happened (with time) to a thing that should happen instantly? If it doesn’t, you are some kind of freak failure and should be voted off of the success island.
This is what gets sold. The dream. So what is real and what is just a big fat lie? I am telling you what internet marketers would rather you not know.
1. Your guru heroes don’t do everything themselves.
They have teams that get paid…. a lot. This "just my laptop and a dream thing" is utter bullshit. Everyone I know hires contractors or has hired contractors at some point. You just can’t do it all. It is impossible to schedule so know that everyone is doing things (including me, HEY ANNIE!) has someone on their team, and it is a significant investment.
Lesson: Before you do the “if they are doing all that, why can’t I" dance, make sure you understand how many people they have on their team and how much they are willing to pay them. Are you willing/ready to do that yet?
2. You can pay for success.
The MORE you pay, the faster things will go. So, let’s talk about the big dirty secret of the entrepreneurship. You can pay for just about anything if you have enough money. For example, I recently heard a story about a business owner who spent 40k for her Facebook ads and then she made 200k from her latest launch. I heard another story about a woman who spent 20k on a huge copywriter with a massive following, who wrote all her blog posts and copy for 6 months and yeah...things started to happen. Now, listen. I know you are like “but I spent 2k on that thing and things are not working for me.” That is not the type of money I am talking about. I can’t even tell you how much money some people pay so that they can say they’ve made six figures.
Most big success stories (that come fast) are attached with BIG investments -- whether it be money, time or integrity.
Lesson: What are you willing to do? Make sure you know the answer up front so that you are setting yourself up for success and not pining over things you don’t have the time, space or stomach to actually do.
3. Making money isn’t hard.
Truth: if you don’t care what you want to make money doing, becoming successful is pretty easy. I remember one of my longtime clients told me about a friend who has been working with a coach for a year, and suddenly she had a six figure business and was curious as to why. I went to her site, and she was a CLONE. A clone of that business strategist exactly.
Now, I could totally do that. It would be super easy. If you want to be a Shenee-clone, I can easily make that happen for you, but what is the point? It is not sustainable, it is bad karma and since most of you are thoughtleaders, you won’t end up liking that at all.
Lesson: Do you want to just make money or do you want to make money your way? It doesn’t matter what you choose but make sure you are aware of your choice.
4. B2B businesses seem like they do better because they are benefiting from an obvious market advantage.
Let’s say you are a weight loss coach. LOTS of people want to lose weight so no problem, right? WELL, because you are trying to build your weight loss practice, you are all up in communities where other people are trying to do the same thing (build their businesses). You will never see those success stories. You’ll only be exposed to struggle for your industry and at the same time, watch business strategist make more obvious money because people need what they have.
Lesson: Stop swimming in the wrong fish bowls.
5. A lot of successful entrepreneurs KEEP their side hustle -- just in case!
People make their money in ways they don’t advertise and in my opinion, that is a GOOD THING. I just wish more people talked about it more. You don’t want to have to max out all of your credit cards just so you can appear successful. Keep outside income going as long as you can. All of the big entrepreneurs will still take speaking events, occasional 1-on-1 clients and short term contracts to keep the energy open and to keep themselves OUT of desperation mode. There is no SHAME IN WORKING.
Lesson: Do what you gotta do -- but with integrity.
6. Most businesses take a long time to become profitable (and stay that way).
Business is a LONG game so just because someone makes money the first year doesn’t mean it is sustainable. Often times you’ll make a ton of money one year and then make half that the next year because you need to grow your team or invest in something huge. Nobody talks about that stuff in our world but in the startup community this is a common process. Sometimes you have to make investments and sacrifices to get what you want in the end. Just check out INC magazine. Businesses go up and down all the time.
Lesson: Be in it for the long-haul.
7. Workshops, classes, and passive income are hard starting places.
This one is my favorite. Somewhere along the way passive income and courses have become the “get rich quick” method of choice. Yeah, no. Unless you are already rolling with a huge audience, this hardly ever is the case. Workshops require a lot of energy and time to create, and the ROI is often not high compared to the amount of hours and money you will put into selling it. Most people will need to put on their class or program 2-3 times before they are actually able to make something happen along the lines of creating actual income that is going to make a HUGE impact on their bottom line.
Lesson: Start with 1-on-1/project based experiences first if income is a concern.
8. All businesses are not created equal.
Entrepreneurship is no different from every other industry. If you know the right people, things grow faster and more people see you. I get the most pissed off when people who have obviously had the advantage of knowing someone else tell people like you and I to not use strategy or don’t really try and just go with it when they have a testimonial on their page from someone with a list of 100k. That is why there are so many classes about “influencers” and “how to email famous people.” Knowing people in higher (bigger list having) places is a huge boost. It isn’t necessary, but please believe that a lot of the people on the top are not necessarily better, but somehow got the exposure they needed to get them there. This is a viable strategy. You can do telesummits, take guest blog posts and another million different things to get yourself in front of the right people, but again it takes a lot of work and for me, it has never been worth it. At the beginning, I used to send emails a lot, and I just stopped and just focused on doing my work and things just came to me.
Lesson: Decide to either join the popularity contest or don’t, but know there is no shame in either choice.
9. Ultimately, success is mostly timing and motivation.
This is why I’ve totally changed the way I offer my digital offerings and the way I do business. If you buy a product, the likelihood of you getting real success from it is random, really. It has more to do with where you are in your life and what is happening around you than it is about the actual thing you are buying. Yes, some products are better than others, but you can still make a big impact on your business from a shitty product if it is timed right. The IM community gets off on this idea that everyone is missing something fundamental and that isn’t true. Most of the times (especially with my clients), it’s about mood and willingness to experiment.
I know, it sucks, but it is totally true.
Lesson: Be realistic about how hard you want to work and how much time you have to experiment in your business.
10. This shit is hard.
You are most likely thinking “duh, I know that” but reallllly. It is hard. You think it is hard to even TRY to get clients? Wait till you actually get them, yo. It gets even harder. Managing expectations, delivering desired results, being there, troubleshooting and customer service are all huge parts of entrepreneurship that no one prepares you for. Not to mention the fact that business is like one of those monsters you have to feed virgins in order to keep from completely destroying the village.
YOUR BIZ LUVS VIRGINS, YO.
You have to keep feeding it. You have to keep moving.
A lot of people (including myself) get frustrated with this process. I mean, shit! Shouldn’t I be good, now? Shouldn’t I be upside down with my avocados and yoga poses right now? Nope. I was talking to a woman who I consider extremely successful. She makes 500k a year and lives on an island part of the year and guess what? She works constantly! She has a huge team to pay! She is on the phone always! She has to keep feeding her business monster virgins, yo!
So if you think that business is going to give you time to go prance around Europe and ride elephants, you might be better suited for a work from home job with paid vacation.
Yes, this is awesome, but be prepared to work. A lot. Especially in the beginning.
Lesson: Go find some virgins to feed your business monsters!
BONUS: Brands are often fabricated.
This is a big one. A lot of the people you look up to are not the people you’ll meet when you go to their event or buy a 1-on-1 with. Nobody is perfect and just because someone has money and has a successful business doesn’t mean they are perfect, happy or not an asshole. Man, I know so many successful jerk-faces. It is insane. The digital space is like a dating profile. Only the best angles and perfect lighting are shown. Even I don’t look like my avatar all the time. Right now, I am wearing a Power Rangers tee-shirt and a pair of gym shorts!
Does that mean you should stop following them? No. But don’t put them up on pedestals because you are bound to be disappointed. We are all just people, and no person is better than any other person.
Except for Keanu Reeves. HE IS BETTER THAN EVERYONE.
I don’t say all of this to make you feel hopeless or sad or to quit. I really just want you to know that it is totally possible for you. It might take a long time. It might require some hustling. It might require you to take breaks or go full-on, but you CAN do this. But you gotta decide TO do this.
If this is the right thing for you, it will happen. It might just not be as pretty as you want.
And despite what everyone says: You already have everything you need, you just need to decide that you want to do it.
Let me know what you think! Any light bulbs go off?
And do me a favor and share this post and let me know how you feel!