The biggest mistake in Internet Marketing

I would like you to meet three of my friends I meet daily.


Here’s John, in the center, he is an interior decorator. After doing business in his city – mostly through referrals for the last 5 years — he has seen some of his competitors do very well using internet marketing and he knows he can do better than them.

On the right is Sean. He is fresh out of college. Being an amazing software programmer, he decided to make his own proprietary software to E-commerce businesses. He has a good product but nobody knows Sean and his software called “SeanSoft.” He wants to aggressively compete in the E-commerce space and mark his right to his market share.

On the left is Betty. She is almost turning 50 and she sells real estate. She is amazing at what she does but she is losing leads because of having no Internet presence.

They all decide to call and work with an internet marketing agency.

They are given a “cure” to their problems and this is what they are told:

  • Make a website (‘Cause your current site is outdated or has bad user interface or some other reason)
  • Do SEO (Search Engine Optimization) and rank for your keywords. And for this, you will need content and links.
  • Do social media (Get into the Buzz) and be on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Snapchat, Periscope, Facebook Live, Instagram, etc.
  • Create Amazing content.

You get the scenario—if you see the activities needed to be done, it’s daunting. John, Sean and Betty are now thinking: “I can’t do this myself. I need to hire someone”.

The three did hire internet marketers and crossed their fingers hoping it would work, or at the very least, get returns on their investment.

Things did not get as planned.

John gets the visibility he wants but he just can’t get more business deals. He was asked for a lot of quotations for his service but no one really hired him. All smoke, no fire!

Sean needs to have a lot of patience since his business is very fierce and competitive. However, he has been waiting it out for the long term turn-around.

Betty is now ranking for some keywords, but no one’s really calling or filling her forms. Her marketer posts 20 times per week on Facebook and if they are lucky, their posts get 2 “likes.” No shares, no page likes.

By now, I need to re-introduce you to a word that comes to mind on such circumstances — frustration!

If you re-cap the entire story. You will notice something strange in the way the internet marketing was planned for our three friends. Although everyone had the same need — more business — everyone was cast into a format.

John needed clients for interior decorating. He got some site visits but it didn’t convert. The same thing happened to Betty. Sean, however, had nothing. He’s just waiting for his SEO to turn.

Getting better ranks and more followers does not guarantee anything. There is no truth to it whatsoever. This is based on an old volume marketing technique which does not apply to internet marketing because of an inherent thing that people do a lot these days which is “short-listing”.

The biggest mistake in internet marketing is not having a truly unique value proposition than the competition and making that the focal point of everything.

Now let’s revisit John. We know people like his work because he has got word-of-mouth referrals and has been existing to this day. This says something about the quality of his work. If he got some visits due to SEO but nothing turned to money is probably because his site said nothing about why he should be hired.  The mistake here is he went into SEO without a message.

Sean was told to do SEO as well, but SEO would take a long time for his niche. He should have been working on Twitter and other social media platforms instead, trying to reach people directly and asking for product demo sessions with tech journalists or potential clients. Marketing on YouTube would also have worked really well instead of waiting for his SEO to bloom.

Betty has spread herself thin. She gets “x” amount of SEO and social hours performed by who she hired but both are failing. There seems to be more promise currently in the SEO side of thing and her social is not amounting to anything. It would have been wiser to work more on SEO and her value proposition in her site.

So, do you need to be anywhere and everywhere? Absolutely not. All you need is something that is “sell-able” that offers a value proposition unlike any competitor and then send the message out in any way. It may not be Google, YouTube… It may be just an E-bay account for all we know.

So don’t spread yourself too thin. Just focus on improving your product and service to such a point that it outpowers the competition and decide how to spread the word from there.




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