When he'd finished, I asked him:-
"what is the purpose of your website?" a question which he couldn't answer.
"does your website tell me what you want me to do when I go there?" - err no was the answer.
"Can I sign up somewhere to hear about what your latest products/services are?" No.
"Can I buy something directly from the website?" No
"Is there a list of your products and services, or reviews of any of them or of the companies you resell for?" No
"Are there any articles about what's happening in that industry and the issues I should be concerned about?" No
"So what's the purpose of your site?" Don't know really.
"What do the people that normally go there do?" Can I get that information?
As you can see, his website was a complete waste of time.
He's running his own business and supporting his family (and driving a nice Mercedes) and his online marketing is effectively ZERO.
How many people are there online who could help this guy - Thousands? Easily.
So why are so many people failing?
My Answer = Because they put the money before the business.
For most Internet newbies looking to start making money - that's as far as they define their model. There are thousands of people around who can tell you how to make a website, where to host it, where to get content, how to create a product, how to start a newsletter, how to buy and sell on Ebay, how to setup an affiliate program, how to arrange JVs and how to get traffic (and all the other aspects of an online business) - but even with this knowledge they're failing to achieve their goals.
They need to take action, that goes without saying and there are lots of people not becoming successful purely because they're not taking any action to move them towards their goal, but I think the fundamental issue even before that action is the state of mind that they're in.
I'm sure that any 1/2 decent marketer can tell you that you're not going to make money by 'selling', matching products with peoples needs is slightly different to 'selling', and that difference is responsible for more failing efforts than you can imagine.
My 'rep' yesterday could see so much improvement in his business just by thinking of the needs of his customers (and potential customers) and there are lots of small actions he could take to improve things. Why hasn't he? because he's thinking constantly about 'selling', he's forgottent that having a website is one thing but making money from it by offering people something that addresses a need they have is a different thing.
Since he was kind enough to buy me lunch and a beer I ran over a few things he might like to consider regarding both his online and offline business. He was like a child that had just been given the keys to a sweet shop, he could see the potential and he knew it all made sense - and that he could actually make these changes without too much effort.
So why am I saying all this? (No, it's not to promote my latest product or 'sell' you something)
These incidents serve as a constant reminder to me of how some people don't realise that permanent changes can be made in an instant (If you've ever been burnt by fire, you'll know how quickly your mind can set up permanent links).
Where we are today is based on the choices we've made, our future can be however we want it. The only thing that needs to happen is for us to decide what we want. This seems so simple, and for anyone who has come to realise the truth in that short statement knows that the change can be swift and permanent.
Unfortunately so many people are walking around in a trance feeling like a victim of the world around them that not only do they not take a look around them and see the possibilities, but they build a container around their world and define its limits.
Money is a means to an end, it's a currency. If you consider your time and happiness as having a higher value then it becomes much easier to set goals which free up your time and allow you to become happier.
If the main thing in your sight is money then you can become caught in a world that revolves around money and restricts your view of the important things in life.
I used to wonder why people didn't 'get it' but now I know that before you can 'get it', you need to be in the right state of mind open to possibilities.
A guy called Maslo once defined what he termed a 'hierarchy or human needs' which have been the basis for many management, leadership and other training courses. His model outlined the various levels of peoples needs (like the requirement for food and shelter etc.), if you focus your efforts on meeting peoples needs you can find that 'selling' becomes much easier and you feel much better about doing it (which has repercussions of its own).