I’m going to share a short story with you that I bet you can relate to. If you pay close attention you'll be able to pick out the secret that is the key to every successful online business.
Back in 2007 I had just finished a particularly shitty day of work - and while driving home, I started the usual discussion in my head:
"I hate my job. I hear about people making tons of cash online - and I'm a smart guy... so there has to be a way I can make money with my own online business and quit this job." As usual, I continued to brainstorm online business ideas for the entire 45 minute drive.
When I got home, I got on the computer and started searching for online businesses opportunities on Google. (Like I’d really be able to find financial freedom on Google!) ...Don’t be too critical, because I bet at some point you've done the same thing...
So after reviewing several offers over the next few days, I signed up for an MLM opportunity.
Over the following months I built my own online marketing campaign, put up my “pay per click” ads on google, and starting watching my email list grow. Soon I had over 500 people on my list, (and a lot less money in my bank account).
Here I thought I was pretty clever. I thought to myself "Most people would never have the ambition to do what it takes to create their own online marketing campaign. I did it, and now I'll be rewarded."
(FYI: At that time, my first online business was "Pro Internet Marketer, LLC".)
So you've probably already guess it, but the cash didn't exactly start pouring in. Building an email list is one thing, but convincing the people on that list that they would be better off if they gave you their money, is an entirely different thing.
There was a skill I was lacking. People would join my list and even respond to my emails, but out of all those people on my list, only one decided to join my team. That's only a 0.2% conversion rate!!! ...and I was selling an opportunity that was only $249 to get started.
Netting out my ad costs with my commission, I lost over $500 for this one new team member. As you could imagine, I was frustrated, but I was determined to make my online business work and didn't give up…
So I switched to a different MLM opportunity, and built a new online marketing campaign. This MLM opportunity only cost $25 to join, so it had to work, right?!? Nope... crickets again. I could build an email list, but no one would join my team!
This process went on for about a year, until my wife started her own side business selling purses. She had just quit her day job to stay home with our first child, so selling purses helped give us some extra cash.
The idea hit me: We could sell purses online! That would be my ticket... and this time my efforts would pay off because I wouldn't be selling an MLM opportunity. That had to be the problem...
Several thousand dollars later, our purse company (http://pursegallery.com) had a solid email list with over a thousand people and thriving Facebook page.
My wife was great at selling handbags at home parties, but as you probably guessed it, my online marketing campaign turned out to be a flop.
"It has to be because I'm not passionate about the product.", I told myself.
(It was 2010, and I had just successfully lost over 15 pounds of body fat.) - "I'll sell healthy meal bars and weight loss information!"
So ounce again I built another online marketing campaign and launched my 5th online business in 4 years (Healthy Meals to Eat, LLC)... AGAIN, hardly anyone would buy my product. Sales weren't even close to paying for my ad costs.
I was devastated. Deflated and humbled, in 2012 I finally decided to take a step back and figure out where things where going wrong.
There was one thing missing in every one of these marketing campaigns, and it's the most important element of every successful online business. Did you pick up on it?
I hadn't yet learned to write messages that would successfully show my customers why they should buy my products.
Have you had similar experiences? Please share in the comments below.
My name is Eric Young. I started this blog to share my ideas around helping people create success online businesses.