If you’ve got a “real” job, unless you’re on a zero hour contract then there’s a good chance that being consistent is part of the package.
Fixed working hours, fixed days off, things to do in the working hours, targets to meet, that kind of thing.
But when you’re your own boss, those kind of niceties suddenly vanish.
It’s up to you what happens and when it happens.
Which – especially when you’re starting out – can lead to things happening in a haphazard fashion. If they happen at all.
The thing is, you need to be reasonably consistent with your internet marketing otherwise it tends to take a back seat and you’re likely to consign it to the “that will never work” box in your mind.
It’s easy to make excuses and tell yourself that if you miss something, that’s OK, you’ll catch up tomorrow.
But when tomorrow arrives, you don’t catch up.
Maybe you don’t even do anything towards your internet marketing business.
You can see it on the lists you’re on – a flurry of emails then a long gap then another flurry.
There are quite a few marketers I know who fall into that category but it’s not a good place to be:
- Your list starts to forget who you are and becomes less responsive
- People unsubscribe or (if it’s been too long) think it’s junk or spam
- The vicious circle starts and you lose enthusiasm
Sometimes it’s unavoidable. Life gets in the way and you really can’t devote even ten or twenty minutes a day to researching and writing an email to your list let along the hour a day I suggest as a good target to keep your internet marketing on track.
The trouble is, we’re creatures of habit.
And consistency – or lack of it – is one of those habits.
You probably wake up at about the same time each day and you’ve probably got your own early morning routine. Likely including mundane things like brushing your teeth, putting on your clothes and quite possibly that first “wake up” cup of tea or coffee.
Then – if you’re holding down a day job while you get this internet marketing thing off the ground – you head off to work.
When you get home in the evening, you have some food, maybe put on the television or head off to your favourite sites and generally do anything other than something towards your internet marketing.
That needs to change!
You need to start making being consistent with your internet marketing part of your daily routine.
It’s often best to do that early in the day. Before anything else conspires against you and you miss another day working on your new business.
That might involve getting up slightly earlier – possibly easier to do in the summer than when the nights start getting longer in the winter but do-able if you set your mind to it.
Personally, I find that creating website content or recording a video or writing an email to my list happens more often if I decide it’s one of the first things I do in the day.
If you’re a night owl then maybe your internet marketing routine would be better as late evening activity.
The precise timing doesn’t much matter.
Someone is always awake to read your emails as soon as they’re sent. And the remaining people on your list will get them when they next log on to their email account.
Your list will get used to your timing. Because I’m in the UK, I’m used to emails appearing overnight from elsewhere on the globe. But I’m sure the same happens for people in America and Australia and other countries.
A good aim for your internet marketing is to at least send a daily email.
That doesn’t have to take long to write – emails are often short although with some lists they’re closer to an essay – and you should be able to write something coherent in maybe 10 or 20 minutes.
I often write about topics that someone on my list has replied to – they push my brain into thinking of solutions.
But if that doesn’t happen (and my fan club isn’t so big that I get replies every single day) there are other places to get inspiration.
I often get that inspiration from one of the Facebook groups I’m in or from emails sent by other marketers.
You could do that or you could set up a Google Alert to keep you up to date on the news in your niche and give you ideas.
Ideally, you should be creating content on your website as well.
Even if you’re slowly putting your email messages into an autoresponder sequence, they’re not very visible outside your immediate list.
It’s unlikely they’ll get passed on to anyone else (when was the last time you forwarded an email you got from a marketer?) or Tweeted about or anything else that will give them a life outside an inbox.
Which means creating content for your website.
I’ll often expand on something I’ve written in an email – taking it from a couple of hundred words up to a thousand or more (the size of this post)
Once you get in the habit, that’s fairly easy to do.
So long as you know enough about your subject, you should be able to expand on the points you made in your email and turn them into a decent size blog post.
Once it’s published, WordPress will notify the search engines by sending out a “ping” and your new content will get crawled and indexed.
Consistency comes into play with this as well.
The search engines are creatures of habit (they were programmed by humans after all) and they crawl round more often if you publish items more often.
So being reasonably consistent with creating new content encourages the search engines crawl round your site more often, gradually building up into more chances to be found in the search results.
That will take time.
No two ways around that.
For every post that goes viral, there are thousands (maybe even millions) that don’t.
But for every site that publishes new content fairly consistently there’s traffic that slowly builds up.
Put up one page and forget about it and there’s an almost 100% chance it will never get found.
Put up a page a day for the next year and announce it to your list and your followers on social media and you’ll slowly build up traction.
Each piece will still likely have a close to 100% chance of not getting found.
That sounds weird at first but there are just so many pages on the web that applies to near enough every single one of them.
But after a year you’ll have a few hundred pieces of content (roughly 250 if you do a new piece every week day) and if each of those only gets one or two visitors most days, you’ve started to build up a decent amount of traffic.
But that only happens if you’re consistent!
Add new content for a couple of days and then take a break for a week or two or a month and you won’t be building up anything much.
So commit to being consistent in your internet marketing and (gradually) watch it build up to something worthwhile for you and your readers.