I started marketing on the internet before it was cool. Back in early 1996, the "commercial internet" was just beginning to fully emerge.
Now that I've carved out a niche for myself, I pride myself in being able to help others find their own way. After all, cyberspace can be a bit intimidating, especially for newbies.
Well, newbies, this article is dedicated to you!
Among the hundreds of email messages I receive daily, one is a constant. It goes something like this "Jim, I really want to build a business on the internet, just like you have. Can you give me some advice to get me started in the right direction?"
Yes. I can. My best advice is this Get your own product or service! The very best way to make money, either online or off, is to market your own product or service.
I can hear some of you now, "So that's the Big Secret, Jim?"
That's right! How many times have you come across this advice?
Be honest. Not too often, I'll bet. Why not? Well, let's just say it is one of the better kept secrets among successful entrepreneurs. Why encourage others to create competition? It's just not done. What's more, with all the reseller programs online, businesses want you selling THEIR stuff and making money for THEM.
As most of you know however, I shoot from the hip. I realize there is enough room for thousands (if not millions) more products and services in cyberspace. Hey, I offer reseller programs of my own. (Click the book cover on the left!) I wouldn't shoot myself in the foot! The fact is, reseller programs CAN be a good source of income in cyberspace. (I'll get into that in a minute.) But, there is NO substitute for YOUR OWN product or service. Here are the best two reasons why...
1. Marketing your own product or service gives you complete control. You'll never have to worry about supply or pricing. You control every aspect.
2. You maximize your profits by keeping nearly all of the money from every sale.
Now, perhaps you already have a product or service in mind for your online business. If not, here's an idea for you to consider...
During my humble beginnings, I learned that the number one seller in the world has always been, and always will be- - information. Not just any information mind you, but specialized information. I made a decision that I would start my business on this premise. I set out to come up with the best information about internet marketing I could offer at a price far below what others were selling it for. This has always been my business strategy and it will remain the same until it stops working. (Most likely never.)
Creating your own information products is NOT hard. Everyone knows something about a particular subject. Whether it is "golfing" or "model airplane flying", you can easily create your own information products. Simply take your area of expertise and start writing down everything you know about it. Think back to everything you have learned over the years about it. This is the type of information others want and need. They will pay good money to save their valuable time and get the facts that you already know.
Once you have all your facts organized, you simply mold them into a marketable format such as a manual or audio tape. If you do not have the time or resources to do this, you can have someone else do it for you. For a list of companies that can help, visit my Info-Product Assistance Page.
Even if you don't want to sell your new information product, it will make an excellent marketing vehicle. Give free copies away to your web site visitors. This is a proven marketing tactic used by some of the most successful entrepreneurs in the world!
Okay, now let's get back to the reseller issue...
"Isn't it possible make money reselling products and service that other companies produce?" Absolutely. The internet is spawning all sorts of new software and other types of products. Although offering YOUR OWN product or service is highly recommended, you CAN make money selling products for others, but you must be VERY selective. Only top selling products and services that fit a certain criteria should even be considered.
What's the criteria? Well, if the product or service fits the following categories, it should be considered
1. It must have a large demand. That is, you must be able to identify a very large group of people who would be interested in it.
2. You must be able to earn at least 25% of the profits on anything you sell. There are far too many so-called opportunities that pay less that 10% to the distributor. You just cannot sell enough of something at this commission rate to earn a substantial income.
3. You must be able to become a reseller without shelling out a large amount of cash. If it looks like it will take you many sales to earn back your initial investment, you may want to pass.
I know first-hand that it is possible to make excellent profits promoting things that others have developed. Here's an example... One of the products I sell is software. The manufacturers set me up with customized versions of their programs. People simply download the programs at my web site and try them out. If they like the programs, they order a registration code from me using their credit card. After processing the payment, I simply email their registration code to them and that's it.
That's the beauty of the internet. In addition to being a boiling pot of new products and services, it makes tasks such as product delivery nearly free. You won't find anything that easy in the real world!
So, the moral of this story?... There are many ways to make money online, but none better than your own product or service. If you do not already have your own product or service to market, do not be discouraged. Just get started right away. Plan to finish it within the next six months or a year. You may be surprised at what you can accomplish!