During my first tries at making money online, I often encountered some kind of inner resistance to specific methods I was testing out. At several times, I had an idea I thought could work, I put in a lot of effort to get this into a state where I could put it online only to find out that I couldn’t bring myself to hit the ‘Publish’ button. The first few times I was not really aware of this, I assumed that I was just not satisfied with how my work turned out, so I kept fiddling and optimizing… but I never clicked that ‘Publish’ button.
After several iterations of this whole process, I began to realize what was going on. It was most blatant when I tried to build an online shop with customized PLR eBooks. The goal was clear: I needed to find a way to get some quick cash flow going to be able to accelerate my efforts through outsourcing. I searched for a long time to get the best PLR eBook I could find. The one I finally bought did indeed have lots of value inside, but I knew that most of the topics that were discussed in this eBook were only glossed over. I did a completely new layout for the eBook, corrected all of the typos, added some clarifications… but I could not possibly sell this under my Office No More brand, as it did not match the quality standard I had set for myself.
So, I did some more work to trick myself into publishing this eBook. I created a whole new brand under a different domain name, set up a completely separate online shop, and rebranded the eBook once more. I now have a separate online shop brand, a completed eBook, a landing page, a business account to take credit card orders, lots of marketing material… and I still did not click that taunting ‘Publish’ button!
This whole incident is about a year back now, and since then I have been able to figure out what this resistance is all about. I want to introduce a conceptual representation of this resistance and what has caused it through a metaphorical bunch of characters… please welcome the Thief, the Beggar and the Trader!
The Thief is a pretty vile creature. He lurks in the shadows of the Internet, preying on unsuspecting website visitors. He is the master of deception, and his goal is to get hold of the money of his victims without their knowing. He forcefully takes value from others.
Internet marketers are often seen as Thieves, who try to scam people to get their credit card details, sign them up in pyramid schemes or send them phishing mails. Fortunately, not many internet marketers act as Thieves, but those who have done so in the past have managed to create this negative association, and the general anonymity that the internet provides certainly helps to increase people’s fears.
Don’t be fooled by the layer of abstraction your computer provides, Thief, your behavior is as illegal in the internet realm as it is in the physical world.
The Beggar does not want to be a Thief. Alas, he has no value to give, yet he asks for money nonetheless, getting by on the bits and pieces that other people don’t mind giving away without a return. He puts his hand out and lives on the hopes that enough passersby part with a few coins.
This is what most of the internet marketing crowd effectively turns out to be. They hope that the visitors that land on their website leave them some money, although they don’t provide any value in return. In this way, they manage to collect a few pennies here and there, but the real wealth they are after will never materialize in this way.
Help make the internet a better place, Beggar, and stop begging for money!
The Trader wants to make a value exchange. He wants to get money from his customers, but he is willing to give them something of equal value in return. In this way, he manages to create a win-win situation where both parties get what they want out of the interaction.
He might even go so far as to ask in advance what his potential customers could need, to make sure that he may offer them as much value as possible.
He is the reason why an economy can blossom, as he seemingly manages to produce value out of thin air.All internet marketers should aspire to be like the Trader, creating value and setting up an offer that improves the lives of everyone involved.
You’re on the right path, Trader, go on and create value!
In the beginnings of my online business, I was always pressed on making sure I was not a Thief. But I was not really clear on the distinction between the Beggar and the Trader. On the one side, I have a few sites now sitting on my servers that are out in the world, begging day in, day out and hoping to make a few pennies through AdSense. On the other side, whenever I was trying to sell something directly, I was never sure whether I provided any value to my customers. Was I a Trader or just another Beggar?
All the resistance I encountered came from my own moral compass which tried to keep me on the path of the Trader. Whenever there was any doubt whatsoever on whether I offered enough value, my subconscious vetoed my projects.
From now on forth, I intend to do my best to always make sure that I am the Trader. I want to create value. In fact, I want to create so much value for people that they are thankful they have paid me when the transaction is over.
This is not even very difficult to do. Just as an example, the simple fact of saving someone a few hours of his time is very valuable to most people. So, you don’t need to produce expensive physical products to have an offer to sell. Just invest your own time into something you can later sell for others so that they don’t have to invest their time themselves. I’m sure you can think of lots of ways to do that. In fact, this is how most informational products work, they are nothing but a shortcut in time.How about you, are you a confident Trader or do you still need to beg?