Start with the Obvious Stuff in Internet Marketing


I recently wrote an email about not ignoring the obvious.

It’s so easy to get bogged down in technical detail or be forever searching for the next latest and greatest thing.

Because, almost all the time, the answer you’re looking for is hiding in plain sight, staring you in the face or maybe even (metaphorically) waving its arms and trying to attract your attention.

Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you probably know most of the things that are hidden behind hyped up sales letters:

  • Little known traffic sources. That’s an oxymoron. It’s highly unlikely that there’s a gigantic traffic source that you’ve never heard of. Because if so many people are using it, at least someone you’ve met will have mentioned it. Chances are that “little known” source is a search engine like Bing or the ads on it; Reddit (OK, not quite as well known as Bing and doesn’t have the advantage of probably being owned by the same company that wrote the software your computer runs on). Or it could be a lesser known traffic source such as Opt Intelligence but if you check out their list of partners you might want to double check your first thoughts.
  • Little known secrets for existing sites. Really? Unless YouTube have just added a new feature, there’s an excellent chance you’ll notice any new option on one of the tabs on the add video screen. OK, you may not know what cards are or whether you should use them. The answer to that is a qualified maybe – when was the last time you saw one on a video you’re watching? And there are people who claim that recording a live video rather than uploading one you recorded earlier gives an advantage in the search results – ask yourself how many times you’ve seen one of those? The thing is, any big new feature on a major site is subject to a fanfare and a lot of comment on a lot of sites. If it was a secret, it’s only because it’s been in beta test for a while rather than on public release.
  • Secret sauce formulas. These are the things that sales letter writers dream of. “Follow this easy to use recipe and replicate my results”. Couched in small print terms of “your results may vary” so that the advert doesn’t fall foul of the regulators. These formula based offers are almost always surrounded by the internet equivalent of sacrificing goats or doing a rain dance. You have to meet so many criteria that it’s almost guaranteed you’ll give up before you prove the sales letter right or wrong.

All of which probably sounds a bit negative.

But what I’m really trying to say is open your eyes to what’s around you.

Too often we ignore what’s really blindingly obvious.

If you spend a lot of your time in a handful of Facebook groups and lots of other people interact in those same groups, chances are you’ve got a target market. How overtly or covertly you advertise to them will depend on the nature of the group – most of the marketing groups I’m in don’t allow affiliate links, otherwise they’d get drowned in posts. But quite a few allow gentle self promotion or even get posts saying to go to X, Y or Z provider. Lurking for a day or two will soon get you the flavour of the group and show you what’s allowable and what isn’t.

Some people make a lot of money doing just that on Facebook and draw in followers to their own network on that site.

Others build up their followers with some simple social engagement techniques. If you use Facebook on even an intermittent basis, you’ll have seen those left, right and centre. They’re so obvious, we ignore them until there’s a Homer Simpson D’oh! moment or we buy a product to point out the obvious to ourselves.

That should give you a big clue about creating products and giveaways for your niche.

  • Find something amazingly obvious – if you use it daily, that’s good
  • Create a headline with an air of mystique about it
  • Create a simple product (a video is easy to make and works nicely)
  • Write a simple sales page that links in with your headline, builds up the mystique and gets your list to want to click the buy now button. If I was writing a sales letter about something like that, I’d even talk about how I’d slapped myself on the forehead for not spotting it before and I might emphasise the money back guarantee whilst hinting that there would be nuggets they’d missed or stop using that would pay the purchase price even if they knew 99% of what I was teaching
  • Promote it – on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, forums, email lists, guest posts, etc.

There – you’ve got an amazingly obvious formula for creating a giveaway product. Flesh that out and it becomes the secret sauce promotion (note to self: maybe I should do that!)

That works in any niche.

Internet marketing we’re exposed to all the time but those techniques work just as well in other markets and maybe (but only maybe) they’re not quite as well used there.

Certainly I’ve seen LeadPages designs in lots of niches outside internet marketing.

I’ve seen video sales pages in most markets and as promos for webinars.

Email lists: they’re everywhere. And in the places they’re pushed less, there’s always YouTube subscriptions or Facebook groups or anywhere else people gather on the web.

It’s hard to over-emphasise that you need to start with the obvious stuff in whichever niche you’re in.

Lurk in a forum for a day and see which questions come up so often that you yawn when you see them. Those are the questions your giveaway or paid product (or both) should be offering.


Because it’s obvious that people want to know about them.

If they didn’t, they wouldn’t be asking the same question – maybe slightly differently worded – over and over and over and over again.

Yet that kind of thing is so obvious we dismiss it as being too obvious.

So the next time you catch yourself writing something off because it’s so obvious, stop and do something about it.

Whether it’s writing a post like this, creating a video, answering the post or thread, or doing all of those things so that you get a bigger audience.

How’s that last sentence for an obvious statement?

Do more things and get more back.




1 thought on “Start with the Obvious Stuff in Internet Marketing

  1. Jon

    Interesting Trevor, Most people, as you say, are not aware of the obvious. The majority of the US electorate are not even slightly aware in what is really happening in government! Even that fellow called Trump keeps getting it wrong and Mrs Clinton, as they do not know that they don’t know due to a complete lack of awareness!

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