Blinkers are often used in horse racing to keep the horses focused and on track.
And metaphorically wearing blinkers can help enormously with your internet marketing.
For a horse, the blinkers stop the view behind and often to the side so that they can concentrate better on what’s ahead of them. Which hopefully includes the fast approaching finish line.
For an internet marketer, it can mean ignoring the million and one distractions that happen, day in, day out.
Everything from emails, Twitter, Facebook, Skype and all those other regular distractions that we tell ourselves are all part of our work…
…through to methods that we’ve either tried and not succeeded with or that are plainly not our style.
If you haven’t worked out what your preferred style is, it’s about time you did so.
Lots of different methods, most of which work for some people but not others.
- Content marketing. The slow-but-steady approach to internet marketing that’s been around on the web as long it’s been in existence and that’s been available in other media for a lot longer: most recently television, radio, books & magazines but before that plays, minstrels and probably even cave paintings. Unless we find a different way of communicating (personally I think telepathy is quite some time away but even that would rely on content) then content marketing is here to stay and I think it should be a decent sized part of your promotional mix.
- Video marketing. Still content marketing really, just a different medium but unless you’re creating slide shows with backing music and maybe captions then it still needs real content. Historically, moving images have always come to the forefront. Cinemas allowed content to reach many more people than theatre or travelling shows. Television quickly took over from radio for a lot of light entertainment. Videos on the web are fast becoming the normal way to get information, even when text would be quicker and easier. If you’ve ever tried to follow an instructional video about something like an Excel spreadsheet you’ll know that it seems to take 2 or 3 minutes to painfully show you how to type in a formula that could have been given in one copy & paste line. But you still watched it.
- Paid advertising. There’s a rule of thumb in direct mail that the cost of an advert will rise until it at least covers the initial profit you’re likely to make. Direct mail and direct response TV have known that for a long time and they’re good at adding in continuity sales and upsells to their process. That was happening long before upsells on the internet. It’s by no means unusual for paid advertising to cost an order of magnitude more than the initial profit you’re likely to make. That’s good if you’ve got the budget to test for a few months until you get past break even – always assuming that’s possible. It’s a lot less good if you’re just starting out and the sales letter promised that this source would automatically put you into profit. Sorry but that’s highly unlikely. Even with cheap ads on places like Bing and YouTube. The price of ads quickly finds its own level so unless you’re in at the start then the paid ad platform is likely already at a level where your ads are highly unlikely to break even. Sometimes paid ads need a change in mindset from you as well. For instance, I’m used to getting product buyers or avid readers of my content on my lists. They’re a completely different type of person from someone who’s clicked on a banner advert or responded to a brief squeeze page. The same applies in reverse – if you use the same techniques with paid product buyers that you’re successfully using via solo ads or Clixsense, chances are you’ll not have much response.
Each of those headings have lots of subdivisions.
For instance, content marketing could be split up into your own site, Facebook, LinkedIn, Google+, forums, guest posting, document shares, free resources, free or paid ebooks, Kindle books and much more.
The same goes for any other method.
So unless your blinkers are well and truly in place, chances are you’ll get distracted and go off in a different direction.
That direction may be more profitable than the one you’re currently going in. That can and does happen, which is why I suggest that you allocate maybe 10% to 20% of your internet marketing time experimenting with new ideas and monitoring the results.
But most of your time should be spent with the tried and tested methods that you know bring in reasonably consistent results for you.
Always assuming you know what those are. If you don’t then it’s time to set aside a few hours and work it out.
But as soon as you’ve got your direction, put your blinkers on.
Delete any advertising emails (or even informative ones) that don’t align with your direction.
Close the tab on any browser windows that don’t fit and that only serve to distract you.
And put the vast majority of your internet marketing time and effort into the things that best fit with your personality and your results.
Keep at it and you’ll be the next success story.
And if you’d like some more help, take a look at my weekly internet marketing tutorial group.