An Overview Of How to Best Leverage Marketing Failures
By Tom Seest
Trying to pursue a career as an online entrepreneur can sometimes be frustrating if you fail to see your efforts pay off. While it’s true that every successful marketer before you has experienced failure, they don’t stay on that path for long.
Regardless of how long you have been trying to succeed online, you can turn things around at any moment if you are willing to take the time to find out how to flip those defeating moments into ongoing successes.
Many marketers, unfortunately, believe that if they keep doing more of the same tasks, the volume of effort will somehow result in a positive outcome. But the truth is, even if you are doing everything you were told to do by a leading expert, you can still suffer failure unless you are brave enough to do things differently.
Below, you’ll find a list of processes you can implement that will help you pinpoint the areas at fault in your business and help you switch things around so that they’re working to help you increase revenue instead of continuing to spin your wheels.
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Table Of Contents
- How to Analyze Your Efforts and Be Honest About What You’ve Done
- How to Compare Your Brand to That of Your Competitors
- When to Consider Whether You Chose the Right Business Model and Niche
- How to See What Needs to Be Eliminated as a Worthless Task
- How to Think About What You Need to Add to Spark Your Success
- How to Look at Whether You’re Investing in Your Business Correctly
- Are You Meeting the Needs of Your Audience or Yourself?
- How to List the People You’ve Strategically Networked With
- Have You Increased Your Knowledge to Build Your Business?
- How to Improve the Focus and Targeted Productivity in Your Business
Before you can put yourself on a path to success, you have to first look in the rearview mirror to see what you have been doing and where you’ve gone wrong. In order for this to be effective, you have to be truthful with yourself and not look at things through rose-colored glasses.
Sometimes, it’s hard for us to see our own flaws. But if you want to improve substantially, you will be forced to admit where you fall short in your Internet marketing efforts.
If necessary, you can even enlist the help of your colleagues and friends online who are in the same industry so that they can give feedback about the quality of your work. You have to preface your request with a specification that they are truthful with you, even blunt, if necessary.
This will require thick skin on your part, whether you are analyzing things yourself or getting feedback from others. You want to be looking at the quality of everything you have done to date.
This includes things like the quality of your info products, the effort you put into your graphics and branding, the attempt you have made at converting visitors into buyers on your sales page, and more.
There are many things that can turn visitors sour on their experience. This can range from technical issues, such as your website not loading quickly, to the lack of professionalism in your writing and graphics.
It’s okay to admit that you are not always the most qualified person to be handling certain tasks. You may have done it this way because she lacked the funding to outsource certain things; there are tools and strategies to help you get around a small budget issue.
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One thing you have to do when you are considering why your efforts are failing is look at the people that you are competing against in the marketplace. It may be that others are excelling, and a simple analysis will show you how you are not living up to the standard of what those consumers expect.
Go through the process of finding information just as a consumer would. For example, get on Google and other search engines and type in the keyword phrases to see who is ranking at the top of the search engine results pages (SERPs).
You also want to find out where your blog posts are ranking for the same types of keywords and phrases. Compare the content to see why Google bots would have chosen their content over yours.
Look at their overall branding to see how they are representing themselves compared to your business. For example, they may have a very professional logo or web design that makes their site more appealing than yours.
Get on social media platforms to see how your competitors are performing there, too. What hashtags are they using? What type of content are they uploading that is getting more engagement than you are with your target audience?
Do they interact with their customers directly in the comments section? They may be going the extra mile where you have fallen short, which is a quick and easy fix on your behalf.
You also want to look at consistency and volume of content. They may be uploading content on a daily or even multiple times per day basis. How often are you uploading content to be competitive?
Take a look at your competitors’ landing pages and lead magnet offers. What is it they are giving away that makes people want to get on their list and ultimately purchase from them instead of you?
You can also look at platforms where people sell info products and look at what kind of information they’re selling. Look at the funnel to see what is in their upgrades. Anything you can compare your business to theirs and spot the obvious differences will help you get on the right track to success.
This doesn’t mean you want to copy the other person. It simply means you are looking into why customers are responding positively to another person and why they may be ignoring you.
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One thing you have to take a look at, which may be difficult, is whether or not you have chosen the correct business model and niche. This is hard to do if you have been involved in these things for a significant period of time.
You don’t want to see all of your hard work go to waste. However, at the same time, you don’t want to continue working on the wrong things in the future. It’s better to admit that you’ve gone in the wrong direction and change course immediately so that your future is full of success than it is to put blinders on and refuse to admit your mistake.
There are so many different business models that you can start with. You may have chosen the one you are currently in simply by purchasing a course and deciding to follow in the exact footsteps of someone else’s journey.
But we all have unique skills and talents, as well as knowledge that has a direct impact on our abilities to succeed at certain things. Some people may be excellent teachers and writers, while others possess a more creative talent for design and crafts.
It might not mean you have to switch your entire business model. For example, if you have your heart set on being an info product vendor but you haven’t nailed down any success to date, you may be able to switch media formats and have it work out better.
It could be that text-based eBooks aren’t a good fit, but the creation of a video course could be something that stands out in a crowded field of experts in your niche and one that reaches a wider audience.
It may be apparent to your followers and target audience that you don’t have any genuine enthusiasm for your niche topic. This is a common problem among marketers who start off as newbies and latch on to a niche that someone else claims they have had success in.
There are many competitors that have the ability to convey their passion for a niche topic, which makes it difficult for someone to share in those leadership roles when they truly aren’t interested and the subject matter.
Find a niche that you find fascinating or comforting, or even just have experience in where you feel you could help the target audience. It can be something you’ve always wanted to learn or something you already know.
Instead of solely focusing on the financial opportunities that a niche provides, which is definitely important, you also want to think about your hobbies and interests. This could be arts and crafts, sports such as golf, health matters that you have a passion for, and more.
If you have found yourself procrastinating in your business, it could be that you are simply avoiding the business model or the niche topic because you aren’t excited about it. It’s important that you change direction as soon as possible if this is the case.
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When you are in the process of conducting an analysis of your business so that you can flip your failures into successes, you need to look at all of the tasks that you do on a regular basis as well as periodically.
Anything that takes up your time, money, and effort should be evaluated for effectiveness. There are many instances where people have read an article or taken a course and been instructed to do something that should benefit their business.
However, once you dig into the results, you may see that what worked for one person and their business model or niche may not work for yours. Time is a precious commodity when you are an online entrepreneur.
This is especially true because you wear all of the hats in your business, and every second of your time should be spent on things that grow your business to the next level of success.
In order to analyze whether or not you need to eliminate certain tasks, you need to keep track of what you have been doing on a regular basis and gauge whether or not those tasks have the intended result.
For example, if you are repurposing your content from text into images, videos, and audio files, look at the response to each one of those media formats to see if any of those are not worth your investment of time and effort.
It could be that for your niche and topic, audio is simply not an effective means of communication. That will free up a portion of the time that you were spending creating the audio files and uploading them to podcast platforms before sharing them elsewhere.
Or, you may find that a social platform that you have been generating content for is simply not delivering the kind of engagement that you had hoped for. You may not have an active audience on every platform, so it’s important that you see which tasks are paying off for you and which can be removed from your schedule.
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At the same time, you also need to look at the opposite effect of your task list. Can you identify things that you have not yet attempted that could spur some success in your business?
For example, maybe you haven’t been as in tune with current search engine optimization (SEO) practices as you should have been. This could be remedied by simply reading up on best practices and guidelines and implementing them with your current and previous content.
There might be something you can identify that you have been too hesitant to use out of here or lack of confidence. For example, if you have been resistant to attempting video and audio marketing, now may be the time to add that to your task list.
You might try repurposing your content and gaining more traction by being able to upload files across many different networks. Or, look into additional social platforms to see if your target audience has grown significantly and would make it worthwhile for you to focus on.
Sometimes, you need to go the extra mile in your business to help it become profitable for you. There are many people in online marketing who wait to build a list until they have some success.
You could make a plan to initiate your list-building efforts now so that you have a captive audience that you can email with valuable information and offers, either as a vendor or an affiliate.
Maybe you’ve already been launching info products, but they’re not converting well for you. Think of what you could add to the business to help it perform better for you. One example might be the use of a funnel.
Many marketers hate upsells themselves, so they avoid using them in their business. What ends up happening is that affiliates pass over your offer because they can earn more from a vendor who meets their needs (and those of their customers) with additional offers in a funnel.
You may need to add affiliate recruitment to your schedule. If you’re relying on fate to bring affiliates to your offers, don’t count on seeing any success. This is something people compete for, so make a note of top performers and do what you need to do to get them onboard.
You might need to add a contest to your launches to get more attention for your offers. It doesn’t have to be a huge prize, but every little bit can help entice people to promote you.
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If you haven’t been an accountant in the past, you may be spending money foolishly and eating up all of your profits. There are many marketers who simply throw their money at every opportunity that comes along.
You don’t want to dig yourself into a deep hole of debt before you even see a profit materialize in your online business. If you are going to be investing in your business, it needs to be done correctly.
First and foremost, stop spending money when you don’t have to. There is a lot of information that you can get for free online, and there are many free tools that are very competitive with the paid ones you will find online.
Look at all of the subscriptions that you currently have, and determine which ones are beneficial to your business and which are simply taking your money month after month. Cancel anything that is not serving the needs of your business well.
How many courses are you buying in order to learn the ropes of Internet marketing? If you keep buying info products, ask yourself if you have taken the time to fully go through the course and implement it as instructed.
Some people are shiny new object chasers, and they buy the hype of every single product that gets released ‘ on a daily or weekly basis. You have to start asking yourself if the course you’re about to invest in is necessary or if you’re just avoiding work.
Another investment that might be worth your time and money is outsourcing to a freelancer. You might need help with content, so you hire a ghostwriter ‘ or graphics, so you hire a designer.
You might even hire a virtual assistant for a few hours each week to help you with the mundane tasks you don’t have time for (or enjoy), such as customer service email responses, uploading content to your blog, or social media management.
Make sure that you’re buying the right tools for your business, too. Sometimes, all you need is the freeware version. For example, you might be able to get away with using CamStudio (freeware) instead of investing in the paid version of Camtasia.
When you buy anything, don’t automatically add every available option to your order. Even when you buy a domain and hosting, they try to oversell you with things you don’t need or can do on your own.
For example, you don’t need to add emails when you can create one yourself. You don’t need their web design tools when you can install WordPress for free and add a free theme to bring a new site to life.
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One area that many people struggle with is wanting to do things their way or based on their own experience. As a niche leader, you have to recognize that your responsibility is to look into the needs and wants of your target audience.
You can conduct research to find out what those are. Start with a keyword tool that will identify the things your prospective want from you. You might be focusing on an area that’s not a pressing concern for your followers, even if it was once your top priority.
Things change in any niche, and trends, news, and fads can make people prioritize issues differently than you may have at one time. You may have followed an expert who told you that paid ads were the end all, be all of marketing success.
But now, more people could have a craving for knowledge about social media traffic instead. You have to be willing (and able) to change directions if it means you get to remain competitive with others.
Another thing you can do is look at the forums and social comments online to see what the needs of your target audience are at any given moment. You can find out a lot of information just by lurking where people hang out online.
Pay attention to info products and books that are being released on ClickBank, Amazon, and elsewhere. You’ll be able to see what’s selling well so that you can conduct your own research on those topics and put together a course that has a unique spin on it for your audience.
Create a customer avatar (or many) of your prospective buyers. Who are they? What is their background like ‘ and their experiences? What gender, age, and financial level are they at?
All of these demographics can help you meet their needs better. If you find, for example, that your data shows you have a big following of senior citizens, then it might affect your slants on content and products.
It also helps you determine how you connect with them. An audience of Gen X and Boomers, for example, might be more prevalent on Facebook ‘ and more willing to read an info product.
A Gen Z and Millennial audience might be found on Instagram, YouTube, and TikTok ‘ and prefer short-form video over text. You want to test your efforts and track the results so you can improve as you go.
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Networking is an important part of whether or not you succeed online. But many people feel uncomfortable putting themselves out there to interact with others. They may simply be shy or lack confidence.
Or, they may have a serious case of imposter syndrome. This is where you don’t believe that you should be taken seriously as a competitor because others are probably better than you are.
You have to eliminate the self-doubt you’re plagued with and embark on a journey to make networking part of your success strategy. There are different types of people you need to network with, too.
Networking with customers is something some people feel they should be above, believe it or not. They try to elevate themselves to a hands-off leadership role like a celebrity.
Instead, you need to be in the trenches with your target audience, listening to their needs and discussing issues with them so that you can better serve them as the person they turn to for advice.
Immerse yourself in the niche, and don’t just sell to people 24/7. Instead, provide value by offering insight at no cost and answering questions that people ask. By showing your worth as a leader, you’ll be the person they look to for answers and solutions.
Affiliates are another group you need to be networking with. Identify the top performers in your niche and connect with them. Go to the platforms where you’ll be selling and see who has landed on the leaderboards of contests for similar products.
Get signed up to many peoples’ lists so that you can see who is promoting the kinds of products and topics you’ll be creating, so you can approach them by understanding whether or not your product is a good fit for their list.
Colleagues who are also Internet marketers should be networked with on a regular basis. These people don’t even have to be in the same business model or niche as you. As long as they also have many of the same tasks as you, such as search engine optimization or list building and traffic, they will be able to provide insight and support whenever you need it, and you can do the same for them.
People who run the platforms you’ll be selling your products on are those you should befriend on social media. While a support desk is beneficial to get answers from, it also helps to have a personal connection with someone who can fast-track your concern or answer questions if and when you need them.
Influencers can be good prospects to network with. Not only can you keep an eye on what they’re promoting and what their audience is engaging with, but befriending them might mean your products get a genuine mention to their audience, too.
It’s important to network with your competitors in general. Even if they’re not necessarily going to promote you, having those connections can be important when discussing issues about platforms, problem customers like serial refunders, and more.
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If you want to turn failures into successes, you have to be honest about whether or not you’re one of the most influential leaders in your niche. That means you have more insight than most others and can guide your audience in what they need.
Whether they require motivation and guidance to achieve a goal or instructions and advice on how to eliminate a pain point or problem, you want to be the one they turn to for their needs.
One way you can do this is by increasing the knowledge you have to share with your target audience. That makes you competitive in the niche. Learning is a continual process.
There are different types of things you need to learn, too. First, take more time to learn about your niche. Turn to the news and pay attention every day to see if there’s something emerging as an interesting story or fact you can share.
Being cutting-edge with your information and advice puts you far ahead of your competitors. If you’ve been relying on the same stale information that’s been around for years, you’ll have a harder time competing for the sale.
Look at trends that are on the horizon, too. You can often find these on social media. It might be a certain way of doing things or a specific subtopic that’s rising in popularity, and it gives you a chance to jump on it early on.
You also want to be tuned into new products that are coming out for your niche audience. This includes both digital and tangible products. Try to be one of the first people to discuss them.
Or, be one of the few who go the extra mile to conduct an in-depth review or case study based on your own usage of a product. This is something many people don’t bother to do, and it can help set you apart.
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If you have been struggling for a long period of time, you may start to feel frantic or panicked about your lack of success. This can cause you to lose focus because you are constantly searching for an easier way to do things.
You also may have become disinterested in running your online business. It’s easier to get excited about your work when you are seeing some sort of success. It’s harder to wake up every day and sit down and be productive and focused when you continually fail at what you are doing.
You need to first figure out if changing your schedule will assist you in being more focused. Switch up how you have been working in the past and try something new. For example, if you’ve been sleeping until noon and working on and off whenever you felt like it, put yourself on a better schedule.
Set the alarm and wake up so that you can be alert and tuned in to your work for a set period of time. You can still work in time blocks, but be specific with tracking the time that you spend working versus when you take a break or allow distractions.
There are many marketers who claim they have been working all day, but if they tallied up the hours they were scrolling on social media or watching Netflix, they would be surprised to see how little they actually worked.
It may help you to create a task list so that you know exactly what you will be doing each and every day, and for how long. Track how much time it takes you to do each task.
Then, the night before you work, create a to-do list that maps out exactly what you need to have done the following day. Eliminate distractions that can pry your eyes and attention away from the task at hand.
Sometimes, your lack of success will be due to the fact that you are not consistent with your productivity. If you are trying to build a loyal audience, they must hear from you on a regular basis.
This includes posting on social media, uploading new articles to your blog, and emailing your subscribers regularly so that they recognize your name as one of the leaders they turn to you in your niche.
You never want to walk away from a potentially thriving career just because you have experienced some failures. Until you have exhausted all efforts to turn things around, which includes implementing some of the above ideas as well as asking others what you might be doing wrong, you need to understand that all hope is not lost for your Internet marketing career.
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