A Warning to New Marketers: Innovation = Starvation

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When I got started in online marketing, I was lucky. Someone told me exactly what to do, and I didn’t know any better than to follow his instructions to the letter.

I looked at it this way – the guy was a self-made millionaire. I was broke. So what was I going to do – take what he told me and ‘fix’ it? Somehow make it better? Improve upon it?

There’s an old expression: If it isn’t broken, don’t fix it.

I took his instructions as gospel and did what he said.

And soon I was making so much money, I was frankly astounded.

The biggest mistake I see new marketers making is they try to innovate.

They have a better idea. A better system. A better method.

And they almost always fail.

Look, there is a place for innovation once you know what you’re doing…

…But not when you’re first getting started.

Imagine you’re teaching someone to drive, and they get a great idea: ‘Why not just beep the horn when they’re about to hit someone? This way that person can get out of the way, and they never need to step on the brakes.’

See how crazy that is?

But it’s exactly how new marketers tend to think: “Forget the old ways, I’ve thought of a better way no one has ever thought of before.”

Uh-huh.

Instead, if you want to meet success quickly in this business, take a system that is already working and copy it.

Yes, that’s right – I’m advocating that you flat out copy what’s already working.

Are you in the diet niche? Then do this: Purchase the top 5 or 10 diet information products.

Pay close attention to every step of the funnel. Take screen shots and notes.

Pour through the products and see what’s good about them and what’s missing.

Then create your own product based on what you’ve learned, and set up a sales funnel based on the funnels you went through.

Do this and I almost guarantee you’ll have a good selling product.

(For more on product creation, see this month’s Product Creation Section.)

Online marketing isn’t hard if you’ll simply do what’s already working. But being human, we tend to think we can do better. Or we think we should do better and that it’s not right to copy systems that others are using.

But all industries are built upon the knowledge of those who went before – even those that innovate like crazy.

I’ll give you an example: It’s July 2003 and you’ve just co-founded Tesla Motors with the intention of building cars.

Are you going to start from scratch, with zero knowledge of cars and engines and how they run…

…or are you going to take all of the knowledge accumulated over the last century and a half of car making, and then BUILD UPON this knowledge to create your own cars?

See?

Even companies like Tesla don’t reinvent the wheel – they make it better AFTER they’ve learned everything they can about what’s working now.

When you’re just starting out, find a system you like that you know is working, and then copy it.

Once you’ve got it working, then and only then do you start innovating.