So these are My Top Five Do’s and Don’ts when starting out online.
To explain my first ‘DO’ I’ll quickly give you the background to how I ended up working online nearly two years’ ago. I initially started back in 2008 with a home based business selling nutritional products. In reality this was more offline than online and took huge amounts of time and effort for very little money in return. In fact I spent more than I made and maxed out several credit cards before realising that the vast majority of people involved in the business were in the same boat and very few people actually made any money.
So this brings me to my FIRST ‘DO’ as a newbie:
(1) Understand the pay plan
Might seem an obvious point but I didn’t! When you are new to any home based business or internet business it’s tempting to get caught up in all the hype around you and not actually get to grips with the pay plan.i.e. how and when you are actually going to get paid. I openly admit I did not understand the plan in my first home based business. I now know that it is what’s called a Uni-level plan and in reality it’s very hard to make any money unless you constantly recruit people to your team and they get to work, which the majority don’t because it’s hard work. It’s like a leaky bucket with people falling out of the bottom faster than you can keep putting them in at the top. Plus, to earn your commissions on any team members you have to have retailed a certain amount yourself, which is a huge commitment of time and money to keep your own retail sales up.
So after two years of that I decided to turn to the internet and looked at various different types of program. Some involve residual income (which means you get paid over and over for doing the work once)..and others were just sell something, get paid once over. So you are constantly looking for the next sale. Some are referred to as ‘big ticket’ opportunities and I did a couple of those… spent a lot of money, made none back. There is also Affiliate Marketing which basically means you are promoting someone else’s product online and getting paid commissions if someone buys from your link or website. This can often seem the easiest place to start for a newbie but be warned… this takes persistent effort, getting traffic to your ‘offer’ and a huge learning curve. But the rewards are good if you can stay the distance.
In terms of MLM type programs, the simplest and fairest compensation plan I have come across and suits me the best is a Matrix. A matrix is a bit like a family tree. You have a position at the top and you introduce the opportunity to a certain number of people who sit on the level below you. So for example if it’s a 4 x 4 matrix this simply means you recruit 4 people, they each recruit 4 people (makes 16), who then recruit 4 (i.e. 64) and they all recruit 4 (256) so in total there would be 340 in your matrix. Depending on the plan you would usually get paid on each person in your matrix and sometimes these matrices feed into other matrices so that people follow you through the system rather than having to recruit a fresh lot of people.
But the main point about a matrix system is that it works the same for everyone. Everyone is TOP of their own matrix and will earn the same. And in particular I love the FORCED matrix plan which means as soon as you have recruited your 4 people, then the 5th you bring in has to drop down to the next level and fills a space under one of your four people. This is called SPILL OVER. A forced matrix means you can help your team members below..and so they can as they bring people in. It makes it quick and easy to fill the matrix.
Which brings me to my second point,which this time is a ‘DON’T’
(2) DON’T try and master everything at once!
Whether you decide to do an
I’ll be honest again, when I started online I didn’t know what a domain name was… or a URL… I knew absolutely nothing. I’d never done much more than send emails and use word and excel. With hindsight I can see now that if I had had the right support and guidance around me my journey up that learning curve would have been much faster and smoother. I tried to learn everything at once, got information overload and eventually paralysed myself. I just didn’t know what I was doing anymore.
With hindsight it’s better to pick one particular way of marketing e.g. using video’s… learn everything there is to know about that then move on to article writing and so on. This really shouldn’t have happened to me because the first major business I joined online was a ‘big ticket’ business which means I had parted with a significant amount of money to be ‘mentored’ by someone. I chose the business and my mentor very carefully… or so I thought. Sadly once I had signed up my mentor disappeared… was never available… and didn’t even reply to emails. I was told that ‘there’s nothing that can’t be Googled’. Oh really…well I guess I could have done that myself and not handed over a four figure sum of money. Since then I’ve found some excellent training sites such as Chris Farrell, Matt Carter and Adam Short which would have saved me a lot of time and money back then. Well we live and learn… Which brings me to my next important ‘DO’…
(3) Do your due diligence and research on any business.
Ask questions, Google search, talk to other people who’ve been working online for some time..there are forums you can join and ask people there. I really thought I’d done sufficient research on 2 big ticket businesses that I joined but incredibly both times my so called Mentor just took the money and ran. The support and training was next to nothing. In the second case it was half a dozen emails about how to get started on Facebook and Twitter etc…which wasn’t a lot but was more than the first ‘mentor’. I did later find some let’s say ‘iffy’ comments about one of my ‘mentor’s on a website a month or two after joining but you can’t always take notice of those..there’s something negative about everyone and every program on the internet if you look hard enough. But it highlighted to me that I could have done more research.
So I set to work teaching myself. I managed to get a blog up and running but then you can have the nicest website in the world but it’s useless if no one ever finds it? So I learned about keywords and traffic and page rankings and all manner of stuff! I spent night after night, weekend after weekend sat at the PC trying to figure it all out. Which brings me to my fourth and extremely important ‘DON’T’.
(4) Don’t Quit!
Again might sound an obvious thing to say but believe me there will be many times when you wonder why you are doing all this?! Frustrating hours trying to get something to work, times when you want to hurl your PC through your front window?… times of joy when something eventually works and times of despair when it doesn’t.
So one thing you must do is get your MINDSET right from the off. Decide right now that you are NOT going to quit no matter what. The rewards from working out how to make money online are HUGE. It will be SO worth the journey. I personally don’t know what I would have done in those early months without some of the uplifting books I was reading and people like Jim Rohn and Bob Proctor.
Reading inspiring and motivating material (books, DVDs, CDs, YouTube videos etc) is even more important if you are surrounded by people who are negative, who try and steal your dream, who say the internet is full of scams. Yes the internet does have some scams for sure but in all honesty for every single business opportunity you look at there will be someone saying it’s a scam. Very often these are people who’ve tried that particular business and didn’t do anything with it, never got to work..hence didn’t make any money..therefore ‘it’s a scam’.
Which leads me towards my final point…who can you trust? How do you cut through all the hype? “Buy my product and you’ll be making over $20,000 by the end of today”..? All that kind of complete rubbish?…No easy answer to that one I’m afraid although in my own experience I can say that you do start to be able to spot the complete crap out there and secondly in my case what has proved crucial to finding success is finding a group of people working online with similar ethics. Not just one ‘mentor’ although if you are lucky enough to find someone who’s the real deal then that’s fantastic…but the alternative is finding a team..a community of people who will help you.
(5) Don’t try and do it all by yourself?
I think of the analogy of renovating a house..imagine you’ve just bought a house and it needs everything doing to it. Would you try and tackle it all yourself? OK so let’s say maybe that’s your intention. So first, it needs a new heating system..ok I’d better go and train myself as plumbing and heating engineer..that could take a while.
Then of course I’ll need to do the re-wiring, again going to take me a while to learn those skills too, then there’s the plastering, the roofing, the new windows to fit, doors to hang. oh my goodness, it goes on and on. Now I’m not saying it’s impossible but let’s face it..how long is that going to take?!… Whereas… what if you knew someone that could do the heating system, and someone who could do electrics? Maybe you’re good at painting and decorating so you can do that bit later on but for now you need some help getting started and someone to teach YOU the skills.
It’s no different with internet marketing. There is a huge amount to learn and there are people out there willing to share their knowledge and expertise, people who enjoy being part of a team and not working alone, re-inventing the wheel every day. If you are choosing the affiliate marketing route then there are some excellent membership sites out there that will help teach you step by step and have a forum for members to chat and help each other. Often they have live webinars from time to time for Q&A sessions. My son has recently started online and he is enjoying an excellent online training/membership site.
So whatever kind of internet business you choose, my advice would be don’t do it alone if you don’t have to. I now belong to an excellent team of online marketers, we are a free community on the net who help each other and share our expertise to speed the whole process up. We’re all here to make money at the end of the day and get on with doing the things in life we want to do, with those we care about. I wish you every success, don’t give up on your dream, baby steps every day,it’s like any career it takes time and it means learning new skills.
You only fail if you quit so don’t!