Have you ever heard the phrase, Keep It Simple, Stupid? The KISS acronym refers to the way many people try to make things harder on themselves – usually by overthinking things or worrying too much about what could go wrong.
When it comes to succeeding as a senior online entrepreneur, you may be fretting about many things – such as competing with others or how much money you believe you need to invest because someone told you to buy a lot of courses and tools.
The reality is, success for entrepreneurs boils down to five fundamental changes you can make in your life where you position yourself as a niche expert and boost your confidence to provide leadership to a loyal audience.
These are concepts that not every individual possess, and you’ll watch as they flounder and lose focus on their success goals. If you can remember these core values, you’ll thrive as an online marketer.
Never Abandon Your Ethics
You’d think this would be a given, and for many newcomers to this business, it feels like something any sane person would do. But all it takes is one late bill, paired with an invitation to do something you’d normally shy away from – and you’ve ruined your reputation.
These things sometimes happen by accident. You join a promotion or event with someone who is lacking in ethics – merely because you’ve heard their name and know of their monetary success.
Instead of digging down to see what they do and whether or not your values align with theirs, your thirst for success overpowers common sense, and you give in, promising you’ll abide by your ethics the entire time.
There’s a reason some of these big shot marketers pair up with newbies who have a fresh reputation. It’s because they bring an element of a clean slate to the table where unsuspecting customers hand over their money, name and email address to you, not knowing the other person, who is a snake, will rip them off.
You may not even have any idea until it’s too late – and you find out they’ve not only failed your customers, but possibly taken off with a large portion of the money the two of you earned, too.
The marketing shark will be moving on to his next victim, while you try to pick up the pieces and salvage what you can of your reputation in the public eye. If the other marketer sold their contact information to scammers, they’ll associate that action with you, too – even if you didn’t know it was going to happen.
Everything you do online has to be done with a strong backbone of knowledge. Never do something blindly or because someone else is doing it – because even those you trust online can make a wrong turn if their own financial pressure gets to be too much.
You need to protect your subscribers and audience as fiercely as you would your most beloved family members. Only then will you enjoy a faster path to achieving your goals, not to mention long-term success.
Figure Out Your Best Success Routine
Routines seem like they’d be something more in line with a 9-5 office job – not the life of an online entrepreneur. But even though you have immense flexibility in your hours and the choices you make in business, you still have commitments that need to be carried out.
You have tasks that have to be taken care of and that requires you to prioritize what you’re doing so that you make sure things that have to be done today, get done on time to keep your business moving in the right direction.
Everyone has the same 24 hours in a day. You’re going to see some people complaining that they don’t have enough time to succeed, while others have time to spare.
The difference is in how they organize and spend their time. Successful entrepreneurs know they’re working alone – so they create a routine that allows them to plow through their to-do list so they can enjoy the rest of their day after working hard.
You need to figure out how long it takes you to do something, such as write a blog post or create an email autoresponder. You need to limit yourself to a certain number of minutes on social media – dedicated to networking and promotions during work hours.
Don’t be one of those people who sit on Facebook for four hours a day commenting on everyone else’s posts, and sharing memes – while others are busy doing things to catapult their success to the next level.
If you create a routine, it doesn’t mean you have to set your alarm for a specific time of the day. But it means you know that in the morning, you’re going to check customer service emails first, then work on moneymaking tasks, like an info product.
You’ll save your slower, less-demanding tasks like networking for the times of the day when your energy is slowing down, and it doesn’t require as much brain power or focus on the task at hand.
You have to remember things like continuing education that need a place on your schedule. If you’re leading a niche audience, they expect you to start tuning in to cutting edge information and trends so you can share it with them.
Whenever something negative happens in your professional or personal life, you have to learn how to set it aside and get work tasks completed. Don’t spend 48 hours ranting about a $7 refund someone did of your eBook.
It isn’t worth the energy and time you’ll spend on it. That $7 refund ends up costing you hundreds or thousands in revenue because it’s sucking you in like quicksand. Let it go and move on to what furthers your growth online.
Pay attention to your efforts and analyze them from time to time. You might carve out 30 minutes a day to going over your systems and processes and seeing if there’s anything you could do faster, easier or better to improve your performance.
Make sure your routines include good organization, too. You don’t want to have files all over your PC – in the download area, on your desktop and elsewhere. If a customer emails you for a file, you want to know exactly where to pull it from.
Your routine has to include personal things, too – not just your business. You need to live a healthy lifestyle to contribute to your energy and drive. Eat better and get plenty of rest.
As you develop a routine that works for you, make sure everything is prioritized the right way. Don’t work on a new update to your squeeze page if you have five customer service emails waiting for a reply.
Don’t neglect your financial pressure by choosing to write a lengthy response on someone’s Facebook post when you need to be working on another chapter or module of your info product.
Be flexible, but smart. You can move your routine around, but always make sure the items listed are prioritized perfectly according to the customers’ and your needs. It can also align with your mental and physical energy, because sometimes things that require a lot of concentration and focus are best done at the beginning of the day.
Be Dedicated to Your Follow Through
You may relate to this one if you’ve been in this business for any extended period of time. Most newbie online entrepreneurs fail to follow through on their projects. Project abandonment is a crisis many people seem to be addicted to.
You have to make up your mind that you’re going to complete the courses you buy, finish the info product you create, publish a certain number of product reviews on your affiliate blog – and so on – before you chalk it up to a failure and move on.
It’s not wrong to try something new if, what you’ve tried before isn’t working. But it is wrong to expect success when all you ever do is hop from one idea to the next, without ever seeing one through to completion.
It’s understandable to some degree, because the hype in sales copy and promo emails can make it seem so enticing to quit what you’re doing and try the next push-button road to riches.
But it’s time to come to grips with the fact that these kinds of copy tactics are nothing more than manipulation, and you want to put your foot down and refuse to live like that anymore.
You’re always going to be distracted by new business models, tools or promises of quick cash if you don’t set some boundaries in place to keep your head in the game and focused on your goals.
Start making smarter buying decisions. Don’t shell out money for every marketing course that is presented to you. Make up your mind that you won’t buy another one until you’ve completed and implemented the ideas from the last one you bought.
It’s not just courses and tools that are going to try to pure you away from your dedication to work. It’s family and friends – both online and in person. They’ll all be vying for your attention, and you need to know when it’s worth stopping what you’re doing, and what can wait.
Don’t let Facebook or Netflix or even mindless eating drag you away from your work. Ignore unimportant phone calls. Handle all of that after you’ve completed your work – or, build in a small break to allow yourself those pleasures on a limited and responsible scale.
Don’t Feel Guilty for Taking Shortcuts
Shortcuts have gotten a bad rap as if they’re something shameful and unwelcomed. But there’s not a successful entrepreneur alive who hasn’t sought a better way to do things. There’s a big difference between a smart shortcut and being lazy and reckless with your business.
As long as you only integrate wise shortcuts into your business, you should see success easier than if you forced yourself to take the long, hard route instead. There are certain ways to take shortcuts that won’t damage your business or reputation.
First, learn how to use tools that make things easier. For example, use templates in Canva instead of trying to design a PowerPoint presentation from scratch. Templates are great pre-designed graphics that help you complete projects earlier.
You can also use private label rights instead of writing content from scratch. You can use it as is, if you’re in a time crunch – or use it as a springboard and rewrite it with your own tone and slant.
It will be up to you to make choices like this wisely. In other words, you’ll need to know who sells ethical (not scraped) content, and whose voice aligns best with what you want to portray to your audience.
Delegating is another shortcut you can add to your arsenal of success tools. It’s okay to allow others to do things for you. Most solo entrepreneurs outsource to freelancers rather than partner up or bring employees onboard, but you can consider both options.
You can outsource all kinds of things such as content creation for your blogs, emails, lead magnets, info products and more. You can have someone else manage your social media accounts or help recruit affiliates for your upcoming launch.
If you try to do everything yourself, as much as you may want to, you’re going to find out that the limited amount of time you have to devote to your business just isn’t enough. So it makes sense to find good people you can rely on in a pinch.
Avoid the Burnout That Kills Many Marketing Careers
Burnout is a real problem for those who work for themselves online. Not only do you shoulder full responsibility for your success and failures, but you do it without the camaraderie of colleagues.
You might know people who do the same thing, but they’re not part of your business. You’re on your own, and that can be overwhelming for some. These individuals are in such a frenzy to succeed that they never break.
They’re too scared that if they slow down and enjoy the income they’ve begun to generate, everything will fall apart. This career is one of the few where you have the ability to automate and outsource so much.
If you want to take a one week vacation to Hawaii, you can – and should! You could outsource the emails and blog posts to a ghostwriter and queue them up before you leave so that they drip out like clockwork while you’re sipping an exotic drink from a pineapple on the beach.
It’s one thing to be dedicated to your audience, but no one expects you to be chained to this business 24/7, 365 days a year. People often leave the offline workforce because of the long hours and grueling commutes, only to come into this career and work more than they ever have out of fear and concern.
You have to prioritize your enjoyment of life. You do that by developing smart systems and strategies like the ones mentioned before. Only then will you achieve the pinnacle of success by proving that your work as an online niche leader has meaning and purpose – not only for your audience, but for you and your family as well.