Part “Simple” of Internet Marketing

Internet-based research of home-based business opportunities?

Fasten your safety belt and stock up on Dramamine; better yet, get a helmet and a NASCAR crash suit as well, because it’s a wild ride and you’ll likely spin out or hit the wall multiple times. In the world depicted in Too Good to Be True, online moneymaking opportunities are currently the dominant force. You inquire, “Bigger than television advertising?” Yes, because you are more actively and interactively involved in seeking solutions online. Yes, the couch potato with his remote control finally dons his cape and tights and ventures into cyberspace in search of truth, profits, and the American way!

I initially signed up for a few multilevel marketing opportunities, you know, vitamins and the like. Having been involved in MLM (unsuccessfully) for a number of years, I wasn’t completely unfamiliar with this concept. I am interested in ways to supplement my diet and maintain my health, as are many other individuals. The added incentive of earning additional income is also appealing, and why not? Upon discovering that the majority of your family and friends, your “warm market,” do not share your enthusiasm, the business aspect ends up in a box in the basement, beneath the Christmas decorations.

The concept of internet marketing is what drew (sucked?) me back into MLM or, as some now prefer to call it, “network marketing.” With team-replicated websites, backoffices, promotional materials for order, e-mail autoresponders, and online conference rooms, the industry was ready for me as well. And all I had to do was “simply direct people to my website,” and the rest would take care of itself. It seemed plausible to me. So, after setting up everything, including acquiring a healthy supply of nutritional supplements AND an autoship account for monthly re-stocks, I once again found myself facing my warm market, except this time it was, “Hey, check out my cool website!” followed by, “hmm…who else is going to check out my website?” Well, my slick back office also included a link to a source from which I could purchase pre-qualified sales leads in bulk for a few dollars per lead. I should anticipate receiving 10 “sign-ups” from interested prospects for every 100 leads; after all, “Remember, Sparky, it’s a numbers game.”

My team training also emphasized meeting new people daily and holding weekly meetings in my home, where everyone would watch a DVD introducing our revolutionary new product and compensation plan. Now, I live in a rural area with a very hyperactive Chihuahua (which is actually my wife’s). I am aware that this is my problem, but so what? As you can imagine, I wasn’t overly enthusiastic about visiting the neighboring towns, passing out flyers, and inviting people to my humble “out in the boonies” home for a special DVD presentation, with additional background music provided by “Pancho Psycho” tearing up the carpet in the bedroom.

HOWEVER, WHERE EXACTLY WAS THE INTERNET MARKETING COMPONENT OF ALL THIS!!?

That’s when I decided to return to the Internet in cape and tights to find the answers. It is mind-boggling how many “How to” websites, capture pages, and sales letters there are online about making money online. It turns into Kryptonite over time. I visited such a mind-numbing number of websites that I nearly ended up in a box beneath the Christmas decorations – OR, to quote Chris Farley as my favorite motivational speaker, Matt Foley, “…IN A VAN, DOWN BY THE RIVER!!!”. Intriguingly, after a while, one also realizes that there isn’t a great deal of unique information available; rather, there are a lot of different people duplicating similar information in very similar formats, often with just enough variation to make it “their stuff” — and mostly dealing with how to sell an information product that reveals how to sell an information product, etc., etc., etc. Not exactly a novel innovation. Eventually, it resembles Rap music or fast food. This homey was being enlarged, but lacked adequate nutrition.

I (Mr. Thick and Naive) also realized that it’s all about getting traffic, driving traffic, and acquiring a prospect base that you can continue to market to. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve read “… all you have to do is’simply’ send people to the website... and (this or that system) will take care of the rest.” This “simple” portion always tripped me up. What made it so straightforward? This appeared to be the big secret in the world of “Earn six figures per week working 20 minutes per day…” or is it “20 minutes per week?” I forget.

But there is good news, and I promise it has nothing to do with lowering your auto insurance premiums. It helped me realize that the fundamental concepts of real estate and general marketing are completely applicable to internet marketing. There is the old real estate adage, “Location, Location, Location,” and the marketing law of POSITIONING, which deals with appealing to what is already in your prospect’s or niche’s mind. In other words, “what do individuals desire and where can they acquire it?” The functionality of search engines, Google in particular, accurately reflects the minds and interests of the people, thereby revealing positioning extremely well and indicating where you’ll need to position your website and/or advertisements to be seen. Location and Positioning laws are completely interdependent online. The real estate of the Information Age is WORDS. Simply visit eBay and search “domain names” for evidence. Many claim that real estate is the best investment. Because information requires a prime location in order to be marketable, “Virtual Estate” shares a quality with land.

Consider that regardless of how well McDonald’s or Starbucks are positioned in the minds of consumers, a McDonald’s or Starbucks located in the middle of a swamp is doomed to fail. Putting a Bill’s Burger Bonanza on the corner of a major intersection, regardless of Bill’s lower public perception than McDonald’s, aids the establishment’s survival significantly.

And by the way, that incredibly cool replicated website your MLM team provided you with is in the middle of a swamp. It is comparable to an unlisted telephone number that Ed McMahon will never dial.

Now, I’d like to give due respect to the successful marketers out there, whether they are 1) MLM’s building relationships and promoting wellness, 2) Affiliate Marketers working to promote the products of others, or 3) Information Marketers assisting others in improving their standard of living. The internet provides enormous opportunities for people who, if they conduct themselves ethically, will contribute to the development of our society and economy. The majority of these individuals work very hard.

There are numerous innovative resources available for those interested in internet marketing. They are available in a variety of packages with varying levels of content and a wide price range.

You will find these resources most useful to the extent that they enhance your understanding of positioning and techniques for locating, generating, driving, and maintaining traffic. Your products and income depend on the development of the aforementioned. All the additional features are icing on the cake. First, there must be a cake. Ensure that the internet marketing resource you select will instruct you on how to bake the cake. You could be flying into the Twilight Zone if you accept the statement, “…you simply send people to your website,” because if you don’t already have that part mastered, you could be in the Twilight Zone.

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