If so, I hear you. I had the same dream back in the late 90’s and got to see it come true. How’s the dream working out for you?
I believe that if you’ve been spending a lot of money on Internet marketing products, seminars and coaching for longer than six to nine months and that money is coming out of your pocket rather than out of the profits of your business, then you may have to consider that you don’t have a business. Instead, you might be a lot like one of those folks that stays in college forever getting more degrees because they’re afraid to face the real world.
The reality is that only a tiny percentage of people that buy IM products ever actually get a site up and running online. That’s okay, too. Internet marketing isn’t for everyone. For that matter, being an entrepreneur isn’t either. But if you’re not making money online and have maxed out all your credit cards signing up for ‘the next big thing’, it’s time to re-evaluate your goals.
Ebooks Aren’t Going to Pay Your Bills
The idea of putting up a bunch of ebook websites up and waiting for the money to come in is over. That ship has sailed. You might make a couple of bucks but nothing significant unless you’ve got a large, responsive mailing list.
There is so much competition in each niche now that you will have to spend as much or more than you make to reach an audience. In most cases, it’s just not worth it unless you’re using your info product to generate leads for consulting, coaching or some other high-end product or service.
It’s Decision Time
The good news is you still have options. Here are a few:
If you have the type of specialized knowledge that people are willing to pay for, then becoming a consultant is one option. Creating ebooks, blogging and putting in time on social media makes sense if it leads to clients that will pay you big bucks to solve their problems. It isn’t passive income but consulting is certainly lucrative. If you want to explore this further, I recommend Alan Weiss’ Getting Started in Consulting
(Amazon Affiliate Link).
If you’ve got the patience and personality for it, coaching is another option. You may have noticed that almost all of the people you’re buying IM courses from have some kind of coaching program. In many cases, it’s the only thing keeping them afloat. Increased competition and the economy have made it much more difficult for them to survive on passive income alone.
Offering Internet Marketing Related Services —
If you’ve learned a lot about Internet marketing and are fascinated by the process but don’t have the desire to create a product on your own, I have good news. There are a lot of businesses out there, big and small, that don’t have a clue how to put up a website, blog or use social media.
Of all the skills an Internet marketer learns, copywriting is the most valuable. It’s the one thing that’s impossible to outsource inexpensively. While there are plenty of good resources on how to write good copy, don’t overlook that you’ll need to be able to find clients. Assuming you can write good copy, that will be your biggest challenge. But the rewards aren’t bad. Freelance copywriters can make $50,000 to $150,000+ a year. If you want more info on how to sell your services, I recommend The Wealthy Freelancer: 12 Secrets to a Great Income and an Enviable Lifestyle (Amazon Affiliate Link).
Social Media Manager:
If you’re experienced using social media like Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn, another option is becoming a social media manager either as an employee or a freelancer. Almost every business around recognizes they need to have a presence on Twitter, Facebook and, in some cases, YouTube but have no idea how to go about it. There are companies paying social media managers anywhere from a few hundred to thousands of dollars a month. If you’d like to pursue this, I recommend Kate Buck’s Let’s Get Social.
If you’ve got a knack for design, becoming a website designer or developer is certainly an option. However, of all the options listed here, this one is the most competitive. Web designers tend to compete on price which is good if you’re hiring one but not so good if you’re in the business. If you know where to look, you can get designers in India, Russia and the Philippines to build a website for as little as $20. Many designers based in the US charge as little as $200. That’s not the route you want to take.
You want clients willing to spend a few thousand or more for a good site. It’s far easier to find one or two new clients per month than trying to find and manage ten or twelve. The advantage you’ll have over those low-budget designers is your marketing knowledge. Most web designers know how to build a website but they don’t know anything about marketing.
Another key is targeting the right customer. A common mistake when Internet marketers become web designers is to offer their services to other Internet marketers. But beginner Internet marketers usually have little money to spend and the ‘gurus’ have designers offering to build their sites for little to no money in exchange for referrals. Instead, pursue small to medium sized business and consider combining your web design business with a social media management service to maximize your income.
Any or all of these options can work. I speak from experience having done all of them myself. Only you can decide which is right for you. But do yourself a favor and pick one. Isn’t it time you graduated?
One last thing. If you’re struggling and none of these suggestions appeals to you, it might be time to try something else. At the very least, break the cycle of buying every new IM product that comes along. If you’re in a coaching program or membership site, either re-commit to getting something done or drop it.