4 Work-At-Home Myths and Good Resources to Overcome Them!
“A dictionary is the only place that success comes before work. Hard work is the price we must pay for success.”
– Vince Lombardi, pro football coach
They say starting an online business has a low barrier of entry (little to no cost to get started and easy to do). What comes after that? A lot of work. Ongoing, Never ending. Learning about all things business owners do they don’t mention to you: how to run a business, how to manage a business and the how to find the niche, develop services that clients actually buy and how to sell them stuff.
Turns out, it’s not that easy.
Low barrier or entry? HA! Hold that thought.
So, what happens to new online business owners when they find it’s not as easy as they said, and the sales aren’t there? They fall into, what I call the “desperate online business owner” (DOBO) mindset. They start to look for that shiny object, that new course, new strategy, new influencer, new business model or application that will be the game changer in their business growth. That person, product or thing that will suddenly generate amazing sales leads. That one training course that will help you build your social media presence because you also bought the app that automates it for you.
These are all the shiny objects to “help you” build your online business, and there is such a learning curve, it’s hard not to fall for something.
Or a lot of somethings.
The online buying process of someone with the this mindset sometimes goes like this: Well I just bought that product and it’s good but this new course offers this key information (fill in the blank) and I get 3 bonuses (fill in the blank), and it says I’ll get sales, so I should just get both and then I’ll get customers!
Sound familiar? That’s the DOBO mindset.
Part of the mindset is lack of faith in yourself – either in your knowledge or your skill set. After all, how many of us are born with entrepreneurial knowledge already tucked away in our little brains?
When we hesitate and question ourselves, we automatically become vulnerable to other people’s suggestions. Combine that with a sense of urgency, like, I really need income! and we become even more suggestable.
Some of those suggestions we hear come in the form of myths.
If this resonates with you, I hate to tell you, but you’ve been assimilated.
Here are the top 4 Myths out there for starting an online business:
Myth #1: It’s easy to start an online business.
“If you do a lot of things to build business, you’ll build business. They don’t have to be done perfectly to work, although the better you do them, the better they’ll work. But the main point is that you have to do them – a lot.“
– Joe Girard, How to Sell Anything to Anybody
It might be easy to get a domain name and put up a website but managing and running an actual online business has a lot of parts to it.
What they don’t tell you is that spending a lot of time working on your website doesn’t necessarily equate to income. It just means you’re working a lot – on your website. And for an online business, there are a lot of activities that don’t equate to sales. Like setting up a blog post or social media account.
Tip: make a list of activities that need to get done. Now put the ones that lead to direct sales at the top of the list.
When it comes to building anything online, no one “just” does anything (even those affiliate marketing guys walking in those cool mansions in the videos!) Behind the scenes of that cool influencer you are watching are a team of people (people the influencer had to find, interview, hire and is now managing) all working to make you think it looks easy. Think about it for a second, have you ever heard of any influencer introducing their team to you? Right, most don’t even mention them. A team can be 1 other person or 20+. There are all sorts of things happening behind the scenes you never see.
In reality, your business may not be in the same stage as that influencer you are watching. You have to develop a strategy for your business first.
Myth #2: It doesn’t cost a lot to start an online business.
The truth is that it takes money to make money, especially on the internet. Yes, there are cheap and free ways to generate interest and draw people to your website but there are just as many costs for an online business as a brick-n-mortar business.
You have to work smart. That means think like a business owner and also look at income generating aspects of your business to balance the costs.
Tip: organizations like SCORE, offer free consultations and workshops for business owners.
Myth #3: Just create an on-line course and make easy residual money.
Yes, online courses are selling and it is a growing industry. But there is so much more that goes into selling a successful course than they tell you.
What they don’t tell you is that there are hundreds of courses already out there and you have to figure out a way to get your course out in front of the people. That’s all about marketing and sales.
Tip: For online course creation: Marketing it is just as important as creating it.
Experts recommend “proof of concept”, first before launching the final product. That’s finding a way to test the product in the market first to see if there are any buyers out there. Then planning the process, which involves a launch strategy and marketing plan.
Lots of behind the scenes work.
Good to know!
Here is what I learned from creating my own course:
- Don’t stop earning income while you’re creating it. Do the design and work in your “off” time.
- Plan to set aside a lot of time and energy if you are serious about creating a course. Not all, but the majority of the work for this type of project is upfront before the product is actually put on the market.
- Plan on investing in an advertising strategy to actually sell the course. Or plan to invest in the person, agency, software that will do this for you.
- Create a plan for things like support for the launch of the product, help with the back-end of the launch, selling the product, and ongoing customer support.
Tip: Plan, research, and strategize before you put your course out there.
Myth #4: You don’t need to know anything about sales or marketing for online business to be successful.
“If you are not taking care of your customer, your competitor will.”
– Bob Hooey
The nature of the online business model is to market your product and services through the internet, which means you need to know how to market, advertise and sell. Those are separate skill sets beyond just putting up a website and offering services.
No one ever told me that (insert lightbulb here).
As my late husband used to say, “you’re only as good as your last sale”.
In a research study conducted by Thinkific, a popular online course platform, they found that 6 figure income earners on their platform had the following similarities:
- Established brand (authority in their marketplace).
- Several years of business and marketing experience.
- A track record of other course and/or product launches (aka practice!).
- Large audiences that know, like, and trust them (email lists, social media followers, etc.)
- Relationships with joint venture partners that help promote their course.
- A respectable marketing budget and strategy for their launch.
- People and systems in place to help prevent mishaps.
Here are a couple suggestions to “unassimilate” (new word!) yourself from the online hype:
- Slow it down. Things aren’t going to dramatically change overnight.
- Go back to your business plan, that is the foundation of your business which you are in charge of.
- Be your own CEO, you can do this!
- Let go of the hype that someone out there is going to rescue you. You are responsible for your business and the success that you will achieve.
- Trust your inner experience and wisdom to get you through this. It can feel like a lot of responsibility and overwhelming at times. Just do a quick review of what you’ve already accomplished.
- The next time you go to buy that shiny object, pause (as in leave that tab open in your browser and sleep on it overnight). Decide if you need or just want that thing – because there will always be more!
Essential Sales Prospecting Checklist by Brian Tracy
High Performance Selling by Brian Tracy
Think and Grow Rich by Napoleon Hill
How to Sell Anything to Anybody by Joe Girard
Money Master the Game: 7 Simple Steps to Financial Freedom by Tony Robbins