These hopeful masses hail from the full spectrum of financial status, from six-figure earners to minimum wage employees. Likewise, the newbie-networker can be an individual with an extensive background in traditional business, or a high school graduate with no clue about the dynamics of commerce and marketing.
I've observed an interesting progression among marketers who came onto the scene without a road map, and with little idea of how the microcosmos of internet marketing worked. Or maybe I've just watched my own journey, and it makes me feel better to assume others have shared my experience.
Either way. Indulge me in a few more paragraphs, if you will, as I lay out what I like to think of as the evolution of an internet marketer.
However, when that dark day of realization comes, and it looms evident that one must work this business if he/she hopes to see any results, the strong of the networking gene pool sprout their working legs and move beyond the fog of delusion. Supremely confident in the knowledge they have surpassed those lazy sluggards who squeeled and fled at the suggestion of buckling down and putting some hard work in, the survivors of Stage One move onward and upward, where surely they will be rewarded for their tenacity.
But they still aren't making any freakin' money. What's more, they are starting to see past the free web hosts, free classified ads, and free trial memberships. All the good stuff seems to cost money, but our Stage Twoers had hoped to put off any kind of monetary investment until they could create at least some kind of income to offset such expenditures.
And so another enormous batch of inferior networkers dies out. The thought of putting some cash into their web-business was more than their fragile little hearts could bear.
But, as always, those more suited to the challenge live on. With a deep breath and a good look at their monthly budgets, the survivors of Stage Two determine they will invest as much money as needed to keep their operations afloat until they are able to become self-funding marketers.
Buying every ebook that comes down the pipe, upgrading into programs they login to once a month, and hitting every buy now button they can find, they cruise through cyberspace on a mission to buy their way right to the top. "I'm not afraid to spend money on *my* business." they tout.
Lots and lots of money goes out. Considerably less revenue comes back in.
Inevitably, the moment arrives when those who have made it to Stage Three see the folly of their current direction. Maybe it's when the credit card bill comes, or perhaps it happens when they are balancing the checkbook.
Once again, the brutal process of selection strikes down those without a heart for further trials. Uncountable numbers of washed-up, would-be internet marketers sink beneath the sludge of this stage.
And once again, that fraction of the whole with the guts and gumption to keep going grows stronger than ever before. More than a regimen of hard work and a willingness to invest money is needed here, they resolve. On the verge of a real breakthrough (they can feel it in their bones now), those who have thus far refused to fall decide a well devised plan for all future endeavors is in order.
This carries on for some time. Until another moment of clarity is reached.
A question is posed...
"Is all of this work really worth the small amount of money I am generating?"
Or, more often...
"How is it that I'm still not making any @#$%! money?!"
This stage progresses rapidly into the next. Many specimens are lost in the transition, but due to the great speed with which Stage Four becomes Stage Five, a surprising number of marketers make the jump.
As you might readily imagine, droves and droves of networkers die out over the course of this stage.
But those who are able to survive this particularly crucial stretch of development will find the arduous journey has paid off. For in the breathless, weary aftermath of their well-earned tantrums, an epiphany is born.
Nobody cares how much money we invest, or how many hours we spend each day in front of our computer. Competition is fierce, expectations are high, and the only thing that matters is whether or not we can penetrate, deliver, and get the sale.
This is a pretty far cry from what most of us want to hear. But lessons that are worth learning usually have a bitter taste.
Seek out people who are successful in this field, and find out what they are doing. Watch them. Ask them questions. Take notes. Absorb as much knowledge as you can, then put that knowledge into practice.
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