To say it mildly, online businesses are minting millionaires in droves and this is the best time in all of human history to jump online and create wealth for you and loved ones faster than you ever thought possible. This is not utopian.
It used to take companies at least one hundred years to move from their humble beginnings to global brands. Global brands like P&G (1837), Nestle (1866), Heineken (1864) readily come to mind.
On the other hand, it took each of Microsoft (1975), Apple (1976), Amazon (1994) and Google (1998) less than 10 years to become household names.
Making it big is not limited to tech giants. Individuals are making a killing online in fields as varied and mundane as online training, physical fitness, and writing (otherwise called blogging).
Take as an example Brendon Burchard. He is an online trainer who started circa 2009. Today he has over 3 million students in over 100 countries. Hiss impact is so massive, Oprah refers to him as “One of the most successful online trainers in history.” His networth is estimated at N22million.
Another example is Ramit Sethi. He launched his first blog in 2004 and in 2018 was featured in Fortune and Forbes simultaneously. In the same year, Forbes featured Ramit side-by-side with Warren Buffet and estimated his networth at $25m.
Making it big is not limited to the menfolk. Chalene Johnson, the global physical fitness icon, has an estimated networth of $10million, while Marie Forleo has estimated networth of $14million.
While Chalene Johnson has been a household name as a physical fitness coach for over 30 years, Marie Forleo catapulted to fame within the last 10 years aided by her Marie TV, online training, coaching and books.
The fastest, easiest, and cheapest way to make it big is to harness the power of the internet. As the internet gurus say, to succeed online, do what works. In short, do not try to reinvent the wheel.
The internet is a paradigm shift. While it has created stupendous wealth for those who master its ecosystem, it has also accelerated the gap between those who know how it works and those who don’t.
Generally, whenever there is a paradigm shift, the knowledge base is reset to zero and everyone has to learn anew. To learn fast and easy, it’s necessary to follow a proven path.
To succeed and thrive, you should follow what I dub Internet Business Success Formula For Beginners. As you know, there is order in the universe. If there were no order there would have been chaos. My Internet Business Success Formula For Beginners is a brief but powerful framework that shows you how to succeed Online. If you follow it, you’ll succeed. If you don’t, you will fail.
The formula consists of 7 steps. Here are they:
Learn day and night
Despite its seeming plug and play simplicity, the internet is a complex ecosystem. To succeed you must learn day and night because change is fast and furious, with basic algorithms changing overnight. Learning enables you to have depth and breadth and keeps you evergreen
Here is the highlight of the things you should learn. Learn:
• How the internet is evolving
• How to be visible
• How to connect with people
• How to build a list
• How to write scripts
• How to create products
• How to make your products discoverable
• How money is made online
Be Visible Off and Online
Being visible requires you increase your off and online footprints so you become known and start building credibility and gravitas. Here are the things you should do to increase your visibility:
• Develop evergreen intellectual properties (books, courses, learning guides, etc.)
• Have a home-base (website or blog)
• Have embassies (social media platforms)
• Have listening posts (mailing lists, social media platforms, podcasts)
• Have satellite towns/cities (guest posting, befriend social media influencers.)
• Stage events and develop your own platforms such as YouTube channel.
• Court the media
To attract strangers, visitors, friends and former enemies into loyal customers and true fans you have to build relationships. While it makes sense to have a vast relationship base, it’s more important to build a base of true fans. Here are the things you should do to build relationships:
• Give out valuable things, like books and e-books, free
• Reach out to your other online influencers
• Extend a hand of fellowship to strangers you meet by providing advice
• Help out with specialized information wherever you can, example in forums
• Make recommendations in areas you have authority; don’t be shy
• Join people together as a connector
• Ask for help wherever you’re challenged, again don’t be shy.
Build A Mailing List
Make building your mailing list a priority so you have whom to market and sell to tomorrow. There is a raging argument online as to what comes first: mailing list on product. As a beginner don’t be distracted by these chicken and egg arguments. List and product are the two sides of the same coin: you online business. Just note that with a list you can market what you don’t have through affiliate marketing but a product with a list takes you nowhere. Also note that as a beginner you will not be able to do affiliate marketing. So build you list and pursue your product evenhandedly. Here is how to approach building your list:
• Start a mailing list from day one (at least now you know).
• Begin with the low hanging, medium hanging, and finally high hanging fruits
• Build a segmented list to enable you tailor your messages
• Employ an affordable mailing or contact management system
• Invite people personally to join your list and be persistent
• Give away valuable incentives, such as books, video lessons, etc.
• Keep at it day and night
Have Something To Offer (Create Products)
Create products to sell so you can add more value to your followers. People will follow you because you have something to offer them. When you do, you will make money but making money should not be your primary consideration. When you do it well, the money will come. Here are the things you should do:
• Equip yourself with knowledge and wisdom
• Write and refine your intellectual properties to perfection
• Develop irresistible courses, events & platforms
• Master the required technologies for production
• Master the required technologies for delivery
• Be consistent and focus on things that will last, the evergreens
• Specialize so people know what you stand for
Learn how to Market and Sell Online
Marketing and selling are the lynchpins that bring in the money. The most successful business owners online excel in marketing and selling. Invest a big percentage of what you generate into marketing to generate more sales and continue growing your business. Here are the things you should do to boost marketing and sales:
• Learn how to use marketing to grow your business
• Understand the psychology of buying and buyer behavior
• Learn how to build your business pipeline
• Learn how to build and optimize your sales funnel
• Learn how to craft sales scripts that convert visitors to customers
• Learn how to use social media for marketing
• Learn how to set up your landing pages
• Pursue selling with gusto because to sell is human but don’t be salesy
Master Strategies to Win Long Term
Succeeding on a sustainable way online is a marathon. Commit to it for the long haul. Develop insight how effort is monetized online and where money is made along the value chain. Know that Rome, as they say, was not built in a day. If you pursue online business as a sprint or one hundred meters dash, you’ll give up too soon and fail. Here are the things you should do at this point:
• Master and refine your winning game plan
• Master the four phases of online business (learning, audience, product, sales)
• Develop a long term view
• Keep keeping things evergreen
• Diversify into adjacent winning areas as you become more confident
• Develop offline assets to mitigate your online risks.
• Repeat and build on the principles of excellence
There you have them, the seven planks that constitute my Internet Business Success Formula. You may be wondering, where is technology, after all we are talking about the internet. The truth is, technology pervades all the seven steps, but technology remains what it is, an enabler. Technology enables you to scale and reach thousands online, but in the end relationships triumph. So we talk about hi-tech, hi-touch.
In the long run you must master technologies that enable you learn day and night, be visible off and online, build relationships, build a mailing list, create products, learn how to market and sell online, and master strategies to win long term.
Knowing the technical aspects or technology is important because you’re dealing with machines and technology will help you scale and automate but it’s not a paramount condition for success for a beginner.
Success online is anchored in the two magic numbers: 10,000 customer base and $10,000 monthly recurring income. You can achieve both easily if you follow the 7-Step Internet Business Success Formula I have given you in this article. Once you hit these numbers, you’re ready to leverage technology to scale. That will be the subject of another article.