The State of Internet Marketing – Part 3

Ok, when we left off last time I was talking about the
preponderance of manifestos, special reports and obituaries
to Internet marketing as we know it.

These documents are designed to shake things up in the
marketplace while building a buzz for an upcoming product or
service launch. John Reese used one prior to the Traffic
launch and this summer, Rich Shefren used one to
launch his coaching program. In fact, Rich ended up
releasing two follow-ups to his initial ‘Internet Marketing

Shefren’s manifesto caused quite a stir last summer. Much of
his report was based on Michael Gerber’s, The E-Myth. The
bottom line was that most marketers spend too much time
working in their business and not enough time working on
their business.

The idea, originally derived from Ray Kroc’s McDonald’s
business model, is to create systems in your business that
can be easily followed by an employee or outsourced so that
the business isn’t dependent on any one person. Each
employee has a specialized task rather than having employees
take on new roles by necessity that don’t necessarily fit
their skills and talents.

In an online business, that might mean outsourcing web
design or customer service and creating a series of
checklists for common procedures. There’s more to it, of
course, but the main focus is systematizing so the owner can
focus on the primary vision they have for their business.

And, by the way, if you don’t have a clearly defined vision
of what you want from your business, that’s something you
need to get started on today. It doesn’t have to be
complicated but it should be something simple to

It might be to make an extra $1,000 a month towards an
education fund for your kids or a down payment on a house.
Or enough to allow you to  quit your job and live the
Internet marketing lifestyle full-time. Or it might be to
build a business that you can sell for X amount of dollars
so you can retire.

The other main thrust of Shefren’s manifesto was how most
Internet marketers are opportunity seekers rather than true
entrepreneurs. Like most of us, they get tons of email
offers for courses, ebooks, software and so on. They judge
each offer based on if they think there’s a true opportunity
to make money rather than asking themselves if this offer
fits their current business goals.

Let me give you an example. Let’s say you are writing an
ebook. One day you get an email offering a course on how to
make money with Google Adsense. Will Adsense sites help you
in any way further your goal to building your ebook website?
The answer is no.

Few marketers will let that conflict prevent them from
ruling out the offer. Instead, they’ll wonder if this is a
legit offer. Can they really make money with Google Adsense?
If they believe they can, they’ll buy. And now they’re
trying to build two different business at the same time
which is a difficult proposition.

Shefren’s solution was to offer a very expensive coaching
program designed to help experienced marketers stay on
track,  develop systems in their businesses and move to the
next level.

Shefren’s launch was a big hit and he had his big record
setting day. I say good for him. Congratulations.

But I had a problem with what came next.

Shefren teamed with publishing powerhouse Agora and wrote
another manifesto about meeting in European castles with
powerful people with plans to take over the Internet
marketing world as we know it.

Gimme a break. If you ask me, these guys read “Winning
Through Intimidation
” a few too many times. Or watched to
many old James Bond movies.

Agora does have some brilliant marketers, copywriters and
product creation people. But Shefren implies that they’ll
eat anyone that crosses their path. And as they enter new
niches, the little guy will be crushed UNLESS you sign up
for Rich’s next program. Personality-driven marketing is
dead because you can’t possibly compete with Agora’s
marketing muscle.

Personality-driven marketing is dead? I guess that might
come as a surprise to someone like Oprah Winfrey.

The reality is if you’re doing business in a niche that
you’re passionate about, have the necessary skills and
knowledge (or know where to find it), you can beat companies
like Agora every time.

Do good restaurants go out of business when McDonalds comes
to town? Hardly. Now restaurants with marginal food, sloppy
dining areas and lousy employees do. But those businesses
were already doomed by their lack of passion and focus.

A lot of people dislike Walmart for various reasons. When
Wal-Mart comes to town, many Mom & Pops go under but these
are usually retail stores that haven’t reinvested in their
businesses in years. They haven’t changed with the times,
haven’t reinvested in their business or remodeled in years,

A business owner with passion and experience can always beat
the Wal-Marts of the world. And website owners with passion
for their niche and a true desire to succeed can always beat
the Agoras of the world.

Although I don’t do much copywriting for hire these days, I
have done so in the past and I’m pretty good at it. Whenever
I write a sales letter for a new client, I have to spend the
lion’s share of my time learning their market. Only then can
I write the sales letter.

I may spend days or even weeks researching the market. Then
I do extensive interviews with the owner or their sales
staff to learn all about their customers. Only then can I
write the letter. It takes a lot of time, energy and
resources. That’s why good copywriters are so expensive.

The reality is that you know and care more about your topic
than the best copywriter money can buy. With just a little
, you can often out write the top dogs.

And this goes beyond sales letters. An online marketer is
communicating through a newsletter, blogs, emails and other
channels. Their enthusiasm and passion always comes through.
Agora has to rely on employees and contractors that are just
doing it for the money.

They might be writing about financial services this week and
weight loss products the next. Their sales letters may be
well-written but they’re often a bit cold and anonymous.

Unless we’re talking about a manufactured item like a car or
a camera, people prefer dealing with people they trust over
big corporations. And even that’s questionable when you
consider the stress most people fell when buying a new car.

So I say forget the Agoras of the world. Don’t let yourself
be manipulated by that kind of fear-based marketing.

Finding a market niche you’re truly passionate about and
finding and creating products for that niche is a model
that’s been around long before the Internet and it’s just as
viable today.

That’s why I teach it in my classes. It works.

So as you read these manifestos and sales letters, ask
yourself if this offer truly fits your goals and visions. If
so, go for it. If not, why not find something that will help
you complete or improve what you’re already working on? Or
better yet, finish what you’re already working on.

Last weekend, I spoke at Pat O’Bryan’s Unseminar. Pat puts
on one hell of a seminar, by the way. I had a blast.

One of the things that’s different about his event is
there’s a lot of interaction between the speakers and the
attendees. Everyone eats together, we do mastermind meetings
in the mornings and the speakers are available to network
and answer questions in the evenings.

So I was able to speak to most of the attendees one-on-one.
Several people signed up for my next class. Quite a few came
up to tell me they were really interested but they were
already committed to one or two other classes and
wondered when I’d offer it again.

Unfortunately, this may be the last time I offer the class.
I love teaching but I need to focus on doing more product
creation and promoting Meet & Grow Rich, my best-selling book with Joe
Vitale on mastermind groups.

Right now, there are only a few seats left in what may be
the last Ebook Mastermind class I offer. Class starts next
Monday night. I’ve put together what I believe is an
irresistable offer. There are only 8 seats left, though, and
every class I’ve offered has sold out.

Better head on over to before
it’s too late.