Why do we over complicate things?
Like everyone else, I’ve been trying to break through the glass ceiling, but for some reason there’s the chain pulling me back. I can see where I want to be, but it’s just out of reach.
I’ve been contemplating this for the past few days weeks, and I think I may have stumbled onto something.
I’ve lost sight of my own marketing strategy.
I lost sight of the basics.
Now I would love to take credit for this, but my fiancÃ©e is really the one to thank for this revelation. She recommended to go back and read some of the original marketing articles I published to figure out what my core message was.
So I did, and I learned two very important things.
- It’s always good to revisit your basics.
- Paying for training can throw you for a loop.
Going back to basics.
What is marketing strategy really?
To me, it is nothing more than one person communicating the benefits of a product or service to another who could benefit from it.
To do this effectively, you have to speak in a language they understand, and be in the places they are.
The minimalist’s guide to online marketing strategy suggests you need 4 things really to make this work.
- Research Skills
- Professional/Customer network
- People Skills
- Platform knowledge
You need research skills to identify who your s are and what they need, a professional network to help you fill that need and a network to buy, people skills to effectively communicate, and finally platform knowledge to know how to interact with your s on their platform(s) of choice. Does it really have to be more complicated?
It’s only more complicated if you let it be.
Now if you’ve been reading my blog for a while, you’ll know the reason I got started in online marketing strategy was because I was fired over a pair of pants.
Starting from absolutely nothing, I developed my approach by spending hours reading tons of free marketing articles, and reading between the lines. The article that has always stuck with me though was written by Jon Morrow of Copyblogger titled How to be interesting. This particular article became the cornerstone for my understanding of online marketing, and anything that I read from that point on had to be put through the filter of “who is this written for, and is it interesting to them?”
It took over a year to get to a sustainable income level. On more than one occasion I had to go through my couch cushions to scrape together $0.50 for a StarCrunch. In that year I watched as many launches as possible. After getting over the disappointment of not being able to afford many of the programs, my poverty became a point of pride. Because I couldn’t afford any extra expenses, I was able to study every launch with a keen eye for detail and always asking “is this interesting?”
At the time, I may have attributed it to fate, but I picked up my second client and doubled my income right at the same time Jon Morrow launched his Guestblogging.com program.
While the program was phenomenal, and I would recommend that anyone who is serious about blogging go through it, I had forgotten to use what I was learning strategically.
Even though I had landed a handful of posts on Problogger.net (which don’t get me wrong, was a significant achievement) it was without purpose.
I had no products to sell, no set prices on consulting services, nothing to offer except for more words.
There were no tangible products for the people who clicked over from Problogger and as a result a lot of wasted to my site.
Sure I got a few extra sign ups for my email list, but a good percentage of those new sign ups don’t even open my emails. I don’t blame them, at the time, there was no immediate way for me to be useful and so it makes it extra impossible for them to think I ever could be.
What’s the point?
When we buy training products, we sometimes abandon what we know in favor of the new thing that we’ve learned.
I’ve done this, and I know plenty of others who have too.
We chase after what is working for someone else thinking that what they’re putting out is going to be the magic solution to all of our problems. We sometimes forget that we’re only seeing what they want us to see. We forget that sometimes the smoke and mirrors and forget to check for the man behind the curtain.
What is important to remember when you buy training is its meant to be incorporated into your marketing strategy, or to fix part of it, but not replace it entirely.
Get back to basics.
If your marketing strategy doesn’t involve commenting on other people’s stuff and SEO best practices, you’re missing out on two huge opportunities to connect with other people and help them out.
Some things that I’ve been neglecting in my own strategy- Answering questions on LinkedIn, participating in chats on Twitter, commenting on other people’s blogs (never really been good at this one though) and paying close attention to my site’s SEO structure.
It’s easy to lose sight of the basic stuff, but it’s good to have a reminder every now and again.
Sometimes its the basic stuff that gets us where we want to go, and when we reconnect with that, life becomes so much simpler.
So go to your archives, reconnect to your basics, get simple.
Above all else remember to have fun. Because life is too short not to.