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Tom’s Internet Marketing Series (1)

The octopus and the bicycle wheel

How do these fit into internet marketing? 

Well, we always hope we master the intelligence to be able to learn and apply the tools we have been taught. So, after quite a few hours invested in learning, we dive in excitedly only to understand after more time and effort, that we have more questions.  We realize we know only one part of the process, usually a small part…not the whole banana!  Not the whole octopus. Not the whole wheel.

Internet marketing is like an octopus and a bicycle wheel.  An octopus has many arms/tentacles with suction cups on each of the arms to grab onto things.  A bicycle wheel needs most of the spokes for it to carry weight. There is a lot to learn here with internet marketing, lots of weight that is, and one must learn its many parts to be effective.

Each part is important-the octopus’ arms and bicycle wheel. Each part and piece of internet marketing is important to make the sum work — make a sale over the internet. There is much to learn, and it is not easy. But a long and difficult journey always begins with the first step and the belief in oneself. You are intelligent enough to master it. You can do it if you try. That is the KEY- taking action. 

There are four essential elements involved in internet marketing that the newbie or even the pro must get right.

Understand the PROBLEM and have a SOLUTION!

Choose to promote products that solve a problem. That is the most important element in internet marketing. Do not worry too much about whether you like the product or service that much, but rather focus on learning what the problem is and how you can bring a good solution to solve it. Guru’s will tell you to ask yourself whether you have a passion for the product?  I don’t think that is the key issue. Let me explain. 

An octopus only cares whether a tentacle can reach the desired object and whether the suction cup will work, right?  You need to think the same way. If you understand the problem and you have a solution for it, that is a huge step forward in digital marketing. People buy solutions to their needs; they buy solutions to ease their pain first and foremost.  Obviously, the bigger the problem, the better chance you have to sell the solution. For example, many people have issues with their weight. This is a common problem. Overweight people are often looking to buy items or services that will make them look slimmer. 

I would advise that this is one of the most important lessons in internet marketing—bring a great solution to a popular problem.


A bicycle wheel will not work if the spokes are made of straw.  You cannot sell diet pills to slim people. So, the lesson here is straight forward—right? With digital marketing, you will be more effective, the more you understand your customer. Identify the problem. Is it pain? Show your customer how to stop the pain. Sounds silly, but it is really that simple. 

Many Internet Marketers want to skip this important step.  They think, “OK, I will write a good content email script and blast it out to my list of 50,000 subscribers that I collected or purchased and then I’ll be good.”  Then… they get no sales?  What could have gone wrong? They ask themselves, “I had a pro write the content, I used a good platform to send the email, and I had the numbers working for me.”  But they forgot or did not understand one of the most important things—who was the actual customer, and what was the customer’s pain point?

So why did the list of subscribers not even open that expensive email that was written by the pro?  Ok, I guess I am dragging this one out for effect. It is hard to sell ice to an Eskimo! I think you get the point here. Take the time to KNOW your customer.  Do not overlook this point. Take it seriously and learn as much as you can about your customer.

Get the TRAFFIC to your OFFER.

Maybe an easy problem to understand but one that takes work to establish. We will address this subject in more detail in forthcoming articles here in this blog. Like spokes that make up the bicycle wheel, and octopus’ arms and suction cups, there are many things to learn here that contribute to the success of digital marketing.  If you do not have consistent, quality traffic, you don’t make many sales. People must know your website exists. They must have a reason to go to it, and they must want to spend time on your site. If these criteria are achieved, you will get consistent, quality traffic-buyers with money who want what you are selling to solve their problem.

Timing is KEY.

Proper timing brings the above points all together. With strong steel, spokes in place, and an alert octopus, all the elements exist to get what action you intended with your marketing campaigns. Quality content and using rich action words brings together the copy to grab your customer’s attention. You get the customer to take the action you have put in front of them, and they then, they act!

Bottom line—Internet marketing is not easy. It has many parts and pieces. Leave one important piece out and you change the results. However, there is a wealth of information out there. Learn the basics before you waste money on an ad or campaign. You can thank me later.

Let us hear from you. If you have any problem you are struggling with regarding digital marketing, copy or content, building your house, or whatever… we would like to hear about it and help you solve that problem.  We have a lot of broad and deep experience and we love to solve problems. Contact us and give us a try. 

*This specific blog is part of a series in which Tom will produce and share with us all about his experiences with digital marketing. Look out for the 2nd blog in the series. It will be out soon!

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