Blogging or building an online reputation is something which has recently received a lot of prominence. Many have gone through it with flying colours at the end but millions have failed miserable. The likes of Darren Rowse of problogger.net, John Chow and many other successful online gurus has survived it through the hard way, so why not you?
So what makes many to fail miserably in their quest to building a successful online business?
Building a business is a lot like raising a child. It takes time and patience. If you’re going to start a business and you’re only willing to give it six months to prove itself, don’t start a business. That probably isn’t even enough time for a franchise. Would you throw out your child because it can’t fend for itself six months out of the womb?
I make most of my business decisions within a working time frame of 2-5 years and for the big decisions with far-ranging consequences, I’m thinking 10-20 years out. This is just like the parent who starts saving for their child’s college education before the child can even read and write. If you want to start a real business and not just a hobby, think long-term.
2. Failure to optimize
Many tend to starting online business due to what they’ve read mostly about those amazing income the likes of Darren, John Chow etc are making each month. But the reality is that, it took them a long time before they got there. Problogger.net for instance started way back in 2002 and it’s now reaping the benefit with those six figure income. Every online business ought to target the long time benefit and not just whining when things are not going as expected in the short term. Facebook is nine years old but how many of us know that. We today talk about Facebook and the millions it’s making but care less how long it has endured. You’re going to make it with your online business when you think of long term and not necessarily thinking of short term. An online business will have processes that get executed over and over. Some of these are human processes, but many are executed by technology, and in my opinion, it’s the technological processes that are the most important for an online business. Whenever someone loads up your home page in their web browser, that’s a process being executed. Reading a blog entry is a process. Clicking an ad is a process. Finding the site is a process.
Due to the sheer volume of processes an online business executes every day as well as their incredible interconnectedness, it isn’t hard to achieve tremendous performance gains through process optimization.
If you generate income from Google Adsense, for example, there are plenty of web sites that provide practical optimization tips. Just do a Google search on adsense optimization and similar search terms, and you’ll find plenty.
Optimization is generally one of the easiest ways to increase revenue for an online business. Even just one hour spent on intelligent optimization can generate enormous payoffs down the road.
How many blogs receive dismal traffic because all the owner does is write posts?
I think that if you dare to be an entrepreneur, you need to learn marketing or have someone in your business who is skilled at marketing. While you can outsource a lot of different business tasks, I don’t think the core marketing of your business should be one of them.
Marketing doesn’t mean buying advertising, which is arguably the most expensive and least effective form of marketing. Don’t keep your site a secret, let as many people know about it as possible. Post comments liberally on other blogs, write articles and allow other sites to use them, swap links with bloggers in the same field, make search-engine friendly pages, and so on. If the content you produce is valuable, then you’re providing even more value by sharing it.
I think the most important realization I had about marketing was this,’if you have a product or service you truly believe in, then you’re actually doing people a disservice by not telling them about it. ‘ Think about that. By NOT marketing, you’re depriving people of value.
If you aren’t eager to tell people about your site, perhaps it means you’re not offering something you believe in strongly enough.
I have no qualms about promoting this site because I believe in its value. I don’t feel embarrassed or apologetic when I tell people about it. If you’re providing real value, then your marketing is doing people a favour as opposed to asking for a favour.
I think a failure to do marketing for an online business is a form of self-sabotage. If you learn about a fantastic new web site, do you tell other people about it? Of course. Is your web site worth telling people about? If you don’t believe it is, you’re likely to avoid marketing it. Somehow you’ll just never seem to get around to doing any significant marketing work.
If you want to build a sustainable online business, focus most of your energies on providing value and on communicating that value.
You see, these are some tips on how NOT to build a successful online business. What are your ticks on this? Your comment is really appreciated.