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LEARNING FROM THE SUCCESS OF OTHERS

by: Cary Christian

Every week I have the opportunity to speak with someone who wants to expand their business activities online. There is almost always a common thread among these people: confusion about how to market their business to make it grow.

All of the marketing "gurus" will tell you that you need to read constantly. Some will go so far as to say you need to read everything you can get your hands on! I don't think I would go that far because there are "nuggets" out there that aren't gold, if you get my drift.

But you do need to read, and most of you do. That is where the confusion starts creeping in for some people. There are so many different ways to market online and there are proponents lined up solidly behind each one of them telling you that's the way to go.

I was thinking earlier about Gary Shawkey's and Brian Garvin's new book (our featured resource this week. See above). It explains in detail how Brian became the marketing dynamo he is and how you can use his experience to find your own road to success. I'm not going to give away any of the contents of the book here, but I do have some observations I've developed watching Brian's rise to fame that I'd like to share with you.

Before I start, however, let me say that this article is not aimed only at people who promote affiliate programs. Yes, Brian is known for his success at promoting affiliate programs, but he makes twice as much per year promoting his own more traditional businesses. So the marketing concepts in play here are equally applicable to those of you who run more traditional businesses.

OBSERVATION 1 - DON'T MAKE UNFAIR COMPARISONS

My first observation is that you can't succeed if you're going to compare yourself to Brian, or any other successful marketer, and tell yourself you could never be like them. They all started from nothing and built their businesses one piece at a time, and you can, too.

At the same time, don't tell yourself you can accomplish the same thing in an unreasonably short period of time. You're being unfair to yourself either way.

People are generally an impatient lot. Many of those I have talked to have read about someone achieving great things and they tend to believe they should be able to do the same thing relatively quickly. As a result, they try to do too many things at once. They lose organization and focus and never seem to complete anything they start in a reasonable time period, or they simply give up too soon. This type of activity fosters confusion more than anything else.

Study the marketing techniques used by successful marketers and test them thoroughly with your own products, services or programs. Once you begin finding marketing sources that will work for you, begin implementing them one at a time. Focus on each one and give it the full benefit of your creativity and effort before moving on to another. Accept the fact that it will take time and do your best to curb your impatience.

OBSERVATION 2 - UNDERSTAND THAT IT'S MORE THAN JUST MARKETING

No matter how good the marketing source is, you will not achieve the results you are seeking if your product is not valuable and worthwhile to your target market. It is your job to build this value first. Then marketing can be used to create demand based on the value you've built into the product.

Be brutally honest with yourself when it comes to evaluating your own products. This can be very difficult. Ask for the opinions of others and steel yourself against feelings of resentment if their opinions aren't what you want them to be. Take their criticisms and use them to make your products the best on the market.

If you're selling other people's products, make sure you do your research and be absolutely sure they're worthy of your time and energy. One thing you will find common to the "gurus" you read about is that they rarely back a poor product. On the rare occasion they have, they have lost money, too!

You also need to understand that these "gurus" have built a following. When they introduce a product or start promoting a new program, lots of people jump on the bandwagon with them simply because of who they are. You can build this kind of following, too, but it will take time.

OBSERVATION 3 - LOOK FOR PARALLELS

Once a marketing "guru" tells all, remember that he has "told all" to many thousands of other people like you. There will be tons of clones out there doing exactly as the "guru" advised. They will find it doesn't work so well simply because of the sheer numbers of people all using the same techniques, and many of them for the same products.

Once all these golden nuggets are made public they lose some of their effectiveness. But only if taken too literally! Use your creativity and draw parallels instead. Understand why the "guru's" techniques work and develop your own variations that are finely tuned to your product.

Understand also that you can learn from the success of others even if they are selling vastly different products. Maybe you'll even learn more since the product differences will force you to look for parallels.

OBSERVATION 4 - FIND A WAY TO DO THINGS DIFFERENTLY

We learned a lot by watching Brian with his marketing of the "Secrets of the Big Dogs" program. For those of you who are not familiar with the program, let me digress a moment.

The Big Dogs program centers around an ebook that provides marketing training primarily on hosted FFA pages for marketing purposes. As part of the program, you join 13 different income-producing programs that are promoted under the Big Dog umbrella. About nine of those are FFA systems. As people join Big Dogs under you they also join the 13 programs and you earn money each month from each program. The FFA pages provide you with about 600,000 leads per month to use for marketing.

So several thousand people promoted Big Dogs using these FFA leads with predictable results. Too many people using the same lead sources yields very poor sales. But Brian made a killing! How? Simple. He didn't use the FFA leads to promote the program! Instead he created a separate web site to promote the program and used hundreds of other marketing sources which he eventually placed on a website made available to his signups, and later to anyone else in the program.

You might want to take a look at this site since it really does contain a lot of good resources. Look at the following page as an example: http://www.bigdogpit.com/adv-solos.html  . You can navigate the rest of the site from there.

This is the essence of finding a way to do things differently. Essentially, Brian added value to the program by providing his recruits with the tools they needed to succeed. Their success translated into money in his pockets.

SUMMARY

Take the time to learn from those who are successful at Internet marketing, but place your own stamp of originality on your efforts. Take your time, focus completely on the tasks at hand, and build your business patiently, one step at a time.


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