You have probably heard or read about people making good money with internet marketing and might be wondering is internet marketing a good career and something you should consider for yourself.
If you’re thinking about becoming an internet marketer, you should know these realities of the business.
Internet and it’s ever growing user base has made it possible to make money online anywhere in the world by marketing online.
Even though the competition has gotten tougher, the potential to make money online is better than ever.
But it’s of course not a walk in the park to be a successful internet marketer. Otherwise everybody would be doing it.
Let’s start by looking at the realities of internet marketing and what kind of money can you expect to earn as a successful internet marketer.
The realities of internet marketing
There are a bit over 4 billion users in the internet today and the numbers keep growing as technology and infrastructure advances even to the farthest corners of earth.
The competition in internet marketing has gotten tougher compared to the early days of internet. But so has the opportunities as the user base has exploded and companies have realized the potential in affiliate marketing.
Affiliate marketing is by far the most common way marketers make money on the internet. In essence a company gives the marketer fraction of the profit when they refer a buying customer.
Large online stores like Amazon have realized the potential of affiliate marketing and both the companies and their affiliate marketers have made fortunes using this model.
This is why you can market almost anything these days online. From sports apparel to information products. Or from coffee beans to airsoft guns.
Unlike you might expect a successful marketer doesn’t have to be very experienced with technology. Things like coding are not necessary to be successful in marketing
Content management systems have evolved to the point that anyone who can use email and a smart phone has all the necessary know-how to begin creating a marketing site. Experience and know how in information technology is of course useful and makes the process easier.
What really is important for a successful internet marketer is the ability to write or create other compelling content like YouTube videos. If you are not a natural writer, don’t worry about. It’s a skill that can be learned like everything else.
In marketing simple and easy to understand language is more important than perfect punctuation. To make revenue with your content you have to earn how to sell. This means creating trust with your readers by offering honest and useful information.
The potential to make a career in internet marketing is possible to anyone willing to learn the ropes and work hard for it.
Treat it like a real business
Here’s the thing. To be really successful in internet marketing, you need to treat it like real business. You can’t just work on it every now and then when you feel like it.
It takes consistent hard work to build a successful money earning business.
It means creating high quality content every single week.
It means developing your site and content constantly and making sure everything is up to date, content and software security included.
It means keeping up with legislation so you don’t end up committing crimes by accidents.
But if you manage to do all that and create a successful online marketing business. There are A LOT of pros. Let’s talk about them first!
You get to decide what to create content about
When you run an online marketing business, you of course get to decide what you wish to market in your content and what your content is about.
Many people don’t realize how important it is for their well-being that someone else is not telling them what to do.
When you are your own boss you can choose to create content only about things that interest you.
You might be someone to whom it’s important to write about ethical or spiritual topics or you might be someone who just wants to talk about sports. It doesn’t matter, you are the boss.
You can market almost anything these days and the only thing that matters is that your content is interesting to at least SOME people. Once you have traffic to your site, it’s only a matter of finding a way to monetize it.
Now don’t get me wrong. Some niches are more profitable than others. It can require quite a bit of imagination to monetize some weirder niches but usually it’s possible.
You get to help people
A successful marketer offers solutions to problems. This means the content you create as a marketer is actually meant to help people.
There are few things in life that offer more sense of accomplishment and satisfaction than knowing you have helped countless of strangers all around the world with your information. And you get to make a buck while doing it!
Work anywhere with an internet connection
I’m writing this post sitting on a beautiful rooftop terrace in Pärnu, Estonia. I’m from Finland myself.
I’m sipping on a cold cider with my small traveling laptop on my lap top. Our residence doesn’t have WiFi so I’m writing on hard drive and I will share the internet connection from my phone to post this later on.
You see, the technology has evolved to the point that it’s possible to go online almost anywhere for a very affordable price.
This makes it possible for an internet marketer to work from anywhere in the world with very small investment.
Your main tools are all online so all you need is an internet connection to update and communicate every now and then.
So if you are someone who likes to travel or wants to change scenery every now and then, this is a great advantage of running an online business. Complete freedom of location.
Small investment and passive income
This is a huge one. When you start a successful internet marketing business your typical income structure will be quite different from a normal job or a brick and mortar business.
In a typical job or business you either get paid a fixed salary every month or by the hours of work you put in. The point is that you get compensated for your work quite fast, for one time.
You then work some more the next month to keep your job and earn a new paycheck. I’m sure I don’t need to open this up more to you and you are familiar with the concept.
In a typical brick and mortar business you take a large loan to be able to rent or buy an office and inventory etc. (these of course depend a lot on the business).
You typically start making money quite fast if you have done your research but it takes a long time to start making profit because of the large debt.
When you start an internet marketing business it takes next to no investment. You need a computer and an internet connection, but since most people have them anyways and both can be acquired dirt cheap these days, it’s not a big deal.
The only thing you really need to invest in is a hosting service and probably some education if you want to succeed.
After that comes the hardest part. You will need too work on the business producing content FOR MONTHS without expecting any revenue.
Yes, you read that correctly, months. Some times over a year.
This is because search engines like Google don’t give authority to new sites. They won’t rank your content until you have enough of it and your site is being constantly updated for long enough.
But once your content starts to rank in Google and you start receiving traffic, the magic starts to happen.
Suddenly the articles you wrote months ago are producing traffic and you start receiving revenue from work you did months ago!
And the best part is just coming!
The work you put in month ago will potentially earn you revenue for months or years to come on complete autopilot! That’s the holy grail of internet marketing, passive income.
Once your site has matured enough for the search engines to rank the content, all the new articles you write will rank much faster. Instead of months some times almost instantly.
After that the income potential grows exponentially. It’s only a matter of how much high quality content you can put out.
This is usually the point it where it becomes wise to outsource at least some of the work or hire writers. That way your business will grow rapidly.
So in a way your work and revenue is cumulative in internet marketing. It takes perseverance, tenacity and faith to keep working on your business every day while not earning a penny in the beginning.
But if or when you succeed (and you will if you really want to) you will get compensated exponentially for all the work you put in growing your business.
So as you can see there is a lot of good stuff going for internet marketing. It’s of course not all bells and whistles so let’s look at some of the cons of working as an independent online marketer.
For some people this can be a pro but to most it’s a con, especially after a while.
You work alone. You don’t have colleagues to shoot the shit with or you don’t get immediate feedback about the quality of your work from a supervisor. So it gets lonely.
You have to able to write or produce quality content otherwise (video, maybe audio) to be successful in internet marketing.
This means you are pretty much on your own with your experience and talent.
You also need to do a lot of research on your own. No one is going to search low competition keywords for you or give you good topics or ideas for content. So once again, it’s completely up to you.
This is the price of freedom. You get to decide about everything, but you are also responsible of everything. Including failure.
You are on the mercy of internet corporations and legislation
The internet is an ever changing entity. The search engine algorithms are also constantly changing. This means the things Google uses to rank your site today might not apply tomorrow.
Every time Google has made a large update to its algorithms many marketers have lost their positions on the first page of Google. This means they are also losing revenue.
Usually they have achieved their first page rankings with completely approved methods but as Google changes they way it determines page relevance to the search term it can effect rankings severely.
That’s why it’s important to focus on producing high quality relevant content instead of building backlinks or stuffing your content with keywords. Everything else should come naturally.
The other thing marketer have to be constantly aware of is legislation. Not just in their home country but globally.
The internet is a global entity and most legislation concerns companies outside of their jurisdiction as people can visit websites from all over the world.
Good example of this is the recent GDPR legislation of the European Union. It affects any company on the internet that might have visitors from the EU. So pretty much the whole internet.
Failure to keep up with the global legislation as a marketer could get you in to big trouble so you have quite a lot of studying to do.
Fortunately places like Wealthy Affiliate keep their users up to date with the legal stuff and even give out pre written disclaimers.
It takes time to start getting income
The fact is that you can’t start making money instantly with internet marketing.
In theory an experienced marketer might be able to pull that off with paid traffic but since you are reading this you shouldn’t expect that.
It can take over a year of constant work to start seeing significant revenue. Some make it faster, others slower. It really depends on the niche and how hard and smartly you work. Everyone has different results.
So if you are unemployed and in dire need of cash, just becoming an internet marketer is not the right solution for you.
Instead, you should get a job to pay the bills and start learning and creating content so maybe after a year or so you can quit the job.
It’s easy to fail if you don’t have guidance
Internet marketing is not rocket science. However there are certain rules you need to know to become successful.
If you don’t educate yourself and just start working randomly, you might end up putting in the same amount of effort a successful marketer has, without seeing any results. Effectively wasting your hard work.
That’s why it’s extremely important to invest in an education. Just like with any other career, you can’t expect to learn everything for free.
Things like keyword research, web hosting, content creation and legislation all are pretty simple when someone shows you how to do it right.
Trying to do it all on your own becomes a tedious task that can end up badly with a lawsuit in extreme cases.
My number one recommendation for learning internet marketing is Wealthy Affiliate. I wrote a thorough review about the service here.
It’s basically an all-in-one service for marketers with the price tag of a high quality hosting service (which is included). You would have to invest in a hosting service as a marketer anyway, so it really is a no brainer to go with WA.
Phew! If you made it this far, thanks for reading and please drop a comment on your thoughts about internet marketing as a career.
I do think it’s a profession that offers great freedom and the pros far out weight the cons. But don’t be fooled and think it doesn’t take work.
If you are willing to accept that and ready to put in the work I suggest you get started right now. Taking action is the first step to success!
If you have any questions, please ask and I will do my best to answer them.