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The biggest LIE the “gurus” told me…

When I was just starting out my online business, I quickly discovered something that still bothers me to this day.

I was a single dad, trying to get myself and my kids off of welfare and be the provider I wanted to be, and every slicked-back guru out there was telling me:

“Be an affiliate marketer! It’s the easy way to make money online because you DON’T have to SELL – let the vendor do the selling!”

And boy, that sounded great! I already had a ton to learn about making money online, so if I could scratch selling off the list (at least to start) – I could get rocking and rolling…

BUT they LIED!

If I have to:

  • Write a pay-per-click ad
  • Write a pre-sell
  • Create a bonus offer
  • Distribute videos
  • Send emails

All of that stuff IS selling! Maybe a long time ago, you used to be able to just post links directly to sales letters and make a killing, but that’s never been my experience.

I actually DID have to learn a LOT about selling to really hit my stride and build my income.

Even my impartial reviews convert because I know EXACTLY what features and benefits I need to talk about to close a sale in the reader’s mind.

For example, if I was writing a review to sell a physical product, I really wouldn’t spend any of my review talking about the packaging. That’s not what’s going to make the reader want what I’m reviewing, right?

That’s a decision I’m making thinking as a salesman, and not a reviewer.

So if you’ve gotten into affiliate marketing thinking you could avoid learning salesmanship, I’m sorry that this might seem like bad news, but it’s really NOT.

See, if you’re SERIOUS about escaping a day job, or just being your own boss, and you’ve decided that the internet is how you’re going to do it – just deal with the fact.

You MUST be willing to sell.

But you DON’T have to adopt any sleazy or pushy tactics. Here’s how I got over my fear of being direct with my prospects.

I’m sure if you’re like me, you’ve bought a LOT of stuff about internet marketing over the years. What I did was went back and looked at the copy that sold ME.

I made a list of all the pieces that I thought convinced me to buy myself, and I ignored all the stuff that I thought was creepy or obnoxious.

Eventually, I had a swipe file full of subtle, but compelling ways to talk about a product that makes people really WANT it, WITHOUT having to put any kind of fake pressure on them.

And I only ever had to use the stuff I felt had worked on ME, and I went ahead and promoted the things I had bought and liked. That made it really easy to sell…

But it WAS still SELLING, no matter what those gurus told me.

I only wish now that I hadn’t spent too much time AVOIDING learning salesmanship myself, because (and this is weird) I kind of felt like if I DID, I would be somehow doing it “wrong”.

Sounds silly – I know, but examine your own mind for a minute and think about if you’re trying to maybe unconsciously AVOID learning how to sell. Out of fear, or because you’ve be told to… doesn’t matter.

Don’t be afraid or delay any longer. Go out and learn how to sell YOU, and then go sell to people just like yourself. You’ll find it’s easy as falling off a log.

And FUN – plus, that’s when you really start making money as an affiliate. At least, that’s been my own experience – which I’m glad to share with you today. 🙂

Talk again soon!
~ Mark

P.S. I almost forgot! Do me a favor, would you – and leave a comment on my blog below about your thoughts? What “guru” lies have held you back from the income you want online?

Have you been scared to really take the reins and learn what you need to know, or have you let someone else dictate it?

Let me know right here!

About Mark Dulisse

Software Developer, Blogger, SEO Consultant, Internet Marketer

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7 comments

  1. You are so right. Based on the amount of pure trash out there, I will not buy something that does not have a moneyback guarantee, and sad to say, I have gotten a refund on most of it because it did not come close to what the squeeze page said. I regularly UNsubscribe from lists because if the person managing the list can’t even take the time to discover that what he/she is pimping today is crap, then they are not interested in anything other than making a buck off me. I think it was Oprah who once said “When people SHOW you who they are, believe them”.

  2. Hey Mark-Been following you since Google Conquest 1st Edition. Thanks for your incredible contribution to the IM marketplace. I am still fighting the good fight and I am still trying to make sales from links on my site, but I would have to say that selling in person and selling online are two different things. I had a successful career in sales, but that has not transferred over to internet marketing yet…maybe I need to study copy writing, what would you say to that? Thanks again!

  3. I would put my website info. up but my website is only half done. In fact, I don’t even know if I still have it. I’ve been ripped off significantly. I’m desperate I guess. Being a single mom and working a full-time job takes it’s toll on a person and I really could have done without borrowing $12K just to have half a web site and nothing to show for the money spent on the “take you by the hand” crap. I’m please to see a Cdn. address, somehow it feels (internet biz) more realistic that I can make money when I see a Cdn. address, I don’t know why, It just makes me think there’s a real human being out there.
    So now I’m choked. I want not only to make the money I lost back I want success. I just need a human that is truly interested or wanting my success to get me through the tech stuff….I think that’s what I need, I’m really not sure anymore.

  4. In my opinion there is not enough taught about the psychology of the buying process. Off line it takes years for a salesman to develop his or her skills and most go through a trainee stage to do it. I don’t understand how the so called “Gurus” imagine that by throwing up a squeeze page template that all of a sudden we are all able to convert visitors to buyers and become instant succesful marketers. In fact SEO & Traffic Generation are easier to learn because they are mechanical processes. Selling on the other hand and writing persuasive copy requires a lot of skill. And yes you can copy and paste stuff but you are not really progressing as a marketer when you do that. Mark has touched on the sales psycolgy aspect of IM today and is the first person offering a course that I have been on that has. I have just started to read a couple of books, the first is “Making Ads Pay” by John Caples and then “The Wizard of Ads” by Roy H Williams. They both look really good and are full of insights into the buying process and what psychological triggers make people want to buy. One last thing if I have to read another crappy email subject line about how some One armed priest has made $70,000 overnight with no list, no product, no internet knowledge and no internet connection I WILL GO MAD!!! We are trying our best here and don’t need that kind if crap. Sorry about that rant!

  5. Hi Mark, thanks for acknowledging it. It is sad though that so many IM newbies get ripped off. It’s taken me a long time to find someone willing to share their knowledge for a reasonable price and really over-deliver as well and not push their products at me every 5 minutes. I came close to throwing in the towel, but there is no way I’m giving up. I am used to direct selling to customers, but selling on the internet is a whole other ball game. And yes, IM involves selling. Your website has to pre-sell your product, you must provide enough enthusiasm for the visitor to click on your link to visit the sales page. Then it’s up to the vendor to make the sale. Don’t give up, learn everything you can to make your business work, and believe me there are people out there willing to help you.

  6. This is weird. As I’ve read this posting for the first time I was really afraid of missing the point, because it sounded strange. So I decided to translate it word for word into my native language. I wanted to know if it is still strange if I understand every single word of it.

    I translated the whole stuff and the bottom line is: Yes, it is still strange, it is more than strange.

    Because the author speaks exactely about that what I ever wished to become, but never heard from anybody out there, that it would be possible: How to become a successful online marketer without hype or telling people lies about the stuff you want to sell.

    Telling such a thing is striving against the stream, it is revolutionary but it feels like finally coming home after an odyssey. It feels like speaking the same language with somebody out there in a foreign country, a language which comes directly from the heart and doesn’t need much words.

    Thanks for having the courage to write about this highly sencitive issue, and thanks for the willingness to teach us the sincere and right way. Thanks for talking about your own experiences so frankly and vivid, and thanks for having the courage to be different than the other Gurus.

    Raphaela

  7. This is so true Mark. Everyone selling their how get rich online with no selling pitch. I dont know how many so-called gurus I ended up giving my money to, just to find out it was alot more work and time than they sold it to be. Thanks for the kickass post.

    Dr. Dan

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