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Secrets Of An Internet Marketing Newbie - Or How I Fell On My Face Trying To Get RICH
A Cautionary Tale for the Internet Marketing Newbie
In an attempt to set up our Internet marketing web sites, we've probably all done some brainless things. Well, I've done all of them. I've been so incredibly gullible, my pocketbook is empty and I'm sure I've contributed many a laugh to the Internet "experts." Since I've done just about everything wrong, I want to share my story with other newbies who are looking for a fast way to get RICH with a web site.
Rich. Ha! What a wonderful illusion of our dream house on the lake, a BMW, Lexus and maybe a Model T in a six-car garage, month-long vacations in far-off lands where you can be served cold, salty drinks with a little umbrella and spend only 20 minutes of work every week - and all of this comes with the fulfillment of our greatest fantasy: telling our corporate boss to "shove it."
It didn't take me long to realize that life can be a stinker. I really didn't have dreams of getting rich as my long-time ambition was only to work from home. Since I'm in my 60's, hey, I deserve to take it easy after so many years of the Fortune 500 dog-eat-dog world, right? So I said to myself, "Ann O, , what are you going to do?"
Every Get RICH Deal in the Book
In the beginning, I looked into several "get RICH" ventures. I was just looking for a system to get some dandy money in a very short time. I subscribed to every free or cheap newsletter I heard about. Most of them have enticing ads for new business possibilities. When you get your name on the Internet "work at home" lists, you also get deluged with snail mail ventures too and some of them are so absurd even I didn't fall for them! Are they still trying to get people to stuff envelopes?
An early opportunity that came along was selling web sites, but what did I know about web sites? I only knew that you clicked on some buttons and information appeared. So that wasn't a good idea. Another prospect was buying real estate without any money. Wow. How do you do that? I read all of that stuff, but not being a rocket scientist, I couldn't understand it. Okay, I'm not doing this right. Let's try something else.
There are many testimonials from Internet marketers who are becoming RICH! They have all the money they want, so why are they hawking information? So my goal became to search out the kind of opportunity that would lead to my own enviable testimonial success story - and the search was on.
The Clicks and Clacks of the All-Inclusive Web Site
Lo and behold, THE big one came along - a complete cookie cutter web site with products and a shopping cart and a very simple way to change the web site as I saw fit. So I anted up many dollars and voila! I had my own web site and products and everything else I needed to get RICH. Pretty soon all of my friends and family knew about it and were anxious to help me out by buying something.
Unfortunately, almost all of them apologized, and said they just couldn't justify buying anything. because the products were so cheesy. One friend did opt to buy two items, but as soon as his name, address, credit card number, etc. were submitted, up popped that awful message, "Sorry, this item is backordered; you will receive it soon."
I hit the first big concrete wall when it occurred to me that I'd best go find some other customers. I had no idea how to do that. I barely knew what a search engine was and didn't know how to get onto one. I knew I could always send to an email list. Of course, by this time I had heard all about spam and decided I didn't want to be thrown in jail, so that plan didn't even warm up.
Okay, I would buy some lists. Many web sites out there offer opt-in email lists that are so refined that they give you people who are interested in white lilacs grown in Nebraska in the winter on a window sill! Wow! Of course, the cost of these lists is
That brainchild didn't last long. I ended up buying just 5,000 plain Jane addresses for way too much money, authored what I thought was a great sales letter, and sent the e-mails out. I got a purchase from two people for a total of $37.
All of the "experts" recommend sending the same email three or four times because the first and second time, no one pays attention. So I did that and got so many unsubscribe orders that it took me the better part of two days to erase them from my list. Talk about spam!
Don't Judge an e-Book Deal by Its Cover
I jumped right into another one. I was going to sell an e-book. It didn't cost me anything but the rights to resell it, and I got the book and a one-page web site that was very nicely done. From there on, it would be pure profit!
Then again, I forgot that I had to get people to visit the site and I still didn't know how to do that - or couldn't afford to get the lists. So there my web site sat. And sat. And still sits.
Another Work at Home Scheme
Another opportunity looked particularly rewarding. All you had to do was contact businesses to see if they had any unwanted product they were looking to get rid of. Maybe they were going belly up; maybe they manufactured too many widgets and couldn't sell them all.
So all I had to do was find these guys with the extra product and offer them a price for their merchandise. If they agreed, the liquidation company would find a seller and take the product off their hands. The company (for a hefty price) provides you with a directory of businesses in all 52 states. So what more did I need? Easy huh? And I could get RICH!!!
After making countless phone calls and mailing 2,500 tantalizing postcards to these businesses, I managed to put together one deal for a popular product. This deal should have netted me about $20,000. All bases were covered, the price was right, etc., etc. Well, don't you know the liquidation company said they couldn't find a buyer? Uh huh.
So I figured I spent almost $500 buying this directory, several hundred dollars in printing supplies for the postcards, $600 in stamps, untold hours in designing the postcards and printing, hand stamping, and mailing out the cards. There were a number of other problems with this company, but that's enough about them. So. I'm still not getting rich.
The Ins and Outs of Internet Marketing
What else did I do wrong? Oh, yes. The most expensive one. Way in the beginning when I was still trying to sell junk on my cookie cutter web site, a very savvy salesman sold me on a program that for $6,000+ would make me an expert in everything. They had people who, over the telephone, would show me how to build a web site, people who would show me how to get myself on a search engine, people who would help me write copy, people who would help me get RICH!!! Believe it or not, I took money out of my IRA to buy this program.
It started well. My tutor called at the very time we had set the appointment. I thought that was a good sign. No one had told me, though, that I needed to do homework before the call. In half an hour, I was supposed to tell her what products I wanted to sell, what I wanted to say about them, how I was going to price them, how many pages I wanted on the site, etc. Since I only got six calls with my tutor at half an hour each, 1/5 of the time was already wasted. However, I thought, okay, I should have been ready. If I want to sell something, I should know what the heck I want to sell!
By the second call, I had everything in place. Here are the products; here are the prices. Then more questions arose: Where are you going to get them? How are you going to ship them? Do you want a shopping basket? A merchant account? For $6,000, I thought THEY might supply me with some of these answers, but I had to figure out the whole plan.
I needed a drop shipper. Where do I find those? "Look on the Internet," she said. Okay, I looked on the Internet and found some middlemen who would sell me products on a drop ship basis, but I would only make about 5 to 10% profit on the purchases, which isn't going to get me RICH. Adding in the costs of doing business, breakage, exceptional customer service, etc., would leave me owing myself money.
The rest of the phone sessions were cast of the same mold as the first couple of calls. I learned very little other than that the people at this company were curt, rude, and obviously not interested in my little business-to-be. The other sessions I managed to get through weren't productive, as you had to start with a viable web site (which never did get built) before you could design anything else and I wasn't able to manage that. About $5,000 of that $6,000 went down the drain.
Eventually I did find a company (Drop Ship Source Directory) with a list of real honest-to-goodness drop shippers. They are absolutely superior, a delight to work with, and extremely reasonable in price. And the manufacturers are first class too, offering great profits, flexibility, and support.
The Ups and Downlines of Multi-Level Marketing
I still wasn't done with my goofball attempts at getting RICH!!! Okay, let's look into multi-level marketing (MLM); that seems to be the way to go. I overlooked the little detail that this was kind of like a pyramid scheme. If a real company with a name, address and phone number is doing it, though, it must be okay. However, I still had that nagging feeling I was getting into something a little shady.
The industry sold a service that would be of tremendous value to many Americans, and I was anxious to get the word out to those who needed it. This company, however, was far more interested in luring other recruiters into the business than selling their product. As a result, I learned virtually nothing about the product and far too much about growing my downline.
We did have telephone coaching seminars and could ask questions of our "mentors" anytime we wanted - but not about the product. Just the downline. I never was able to get any answers orally or in writing, and the few times I did try to cold call a prospect, I broke out in a sweat. That little undertaking cost me a couple of hundred dollars.
Where There's Will, There's Pay!
After all the dumb things I did, I finally wised up, did the right kind of research and found there are several exceptionally good people who are willing to be teachers for those who are trying to succeed. For me, finding them was a trial and error experience, but several names surfaced: Shawn Casey, Dan Kennedy, Cory Rudl, Yanik Silver, John Reese and Tom Hua, and my apologies for not remembering the rest. Doing it the RIGHT way though is NOT easy, and you won't get rich quick. You're NOT going to sell stuff in he first ten minutes. If you don't feel like waiting, though, there are pre-built sites that offer products or e-books.
There are many steps you have to take, and these experienced internet marketers can guide you. You have to build a good reputation, you have to KEEP the good reputation, you have to build a solid customer base, and you have to KEEP the customer base. You do this by constantly testing the market, providing exceptional customer service and being willing to spend (and lose) a little money. By working with them, you'll be doing it right. Bear in mind that 95% of Internet businesses fail. Remember the dot com debacle of the 90's?
After all these failures, and after doing the research I should have done in the first place, I found a company, Global eBusiness Technologies (GET), that is willing to build my web site, provide the necessary marketing, critique the products I want to offer, suggest revisions in the prices I want to charge, get me on the search engines in a very good position, and generally help me succeed. These services are not inexpensive but they're worth the time, money and involvement.
My site should be up soon, and I'm looking forward to getting RICH!!! No, I won't get rich, but at least I'll have some income besides my Social Security, and I'll certainly make more money than an 8 to 5 job. GET's services are not cheap, but I don't want to forget that extremely important fact of life: there are no free lunches. There are no get RICH quick deals either.
My success will enhance GET's reputation, and I can't wait to write my testimonial. And when you see me, you'll know I'm for real.
by Ann O. Nimus
Juliana Johnson and Ann O. Nimus are newbies to internet marketing but are trying their darndest to be superstars.
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