Internet Marketing – I Am Failing Fast – So How Will I succeed?

Internet Marketing – I Am Failing Fast – So How Will I succeed?

Hey hey people hows it going?

First things first I really must apologise for my lack of activity on my blog over the last 3 months,
Family life has been keeping me VERY busy and I also just had three weeks off my day job so decided to
have a total rest. It has been a VERY busy year what with starting my internet marketing business and bringing up a newborn on top of everything else. Quite frankly I am totally worn out and my batteries have not even partly recharged yet.

So why am I failing?

As most of you know I have had quite a successful year, including making multiple thousands of dollars in affiliate sales I also currently have a list of 8,000 subscribers and I wrote my first book newbiesjournal. I have been to workshops and seminars and met many fellow marketers in the flesh, people have been speaking highly of me and yeah I thought life is good Im actually gonna crack this Internet Marketing lark. I thought it was just gonna keep on growing.

How wrong was I.

I even went looking for a new BMW 3 series, thought about booking a family holiday to Florida and even as far as searching to rent a bigger house.


Things are going wrong BIG time and it makes me sick to the stomach, its an even worse feeling than before I made my first buck online and I was trying to make it work.

What makes it worse is I feel its my fault, its my fault I have not taken enough action, its my fault I have not taken steps to push me forward.

You see……

I have not learnt enough, I have not focused, I have not made the most of my limited time I can work on my business, and maybe I have been following the wrong programs.

But like I say it is hard to do this especially when you have a family of three and already work 48 hours a week, sometimes you just dont feel like doing anything else.

I am just plain knackered, I have to pick myself up.

The crucial part of my business has been my email list, and this is where it is failing you see I have built my list using adswaps.

At first it was great I had $2000 months back at christmas and that was with a 2000 subscriber list
I was getting almost a 10% open rate
And I could pull in some good commission on promoting someones launch.


I have 8000 subscribers,
I have an open rate of between 2% and 4%.
On a promo I am lucky if I get one sale.

Also I get a chance to find, who helped me with promotion.

Adswaps just are not as effective anymore and there are a lot of tactics being used that I just dont like, I did see it happening but I never did anything about it. Had I been in this a year earlier I think I would of made it.

See I also had plans, I was gonna create a product to teach people how I built my list using adswaps but im not sure its an effective enough method to turn into a product.

Plus I was gonna set up a solo ad service as another income stream.

But as things stand I have to really start again.

I need to build a new list and learn how to treat this list better
I need to explore options outside of the IM Niche/Make money online Niche
Maybe just get back into plain old article marketing
Maybe build review blogs
Maybe build Micro Niche adsense sites
Create my own product in the Golf Niche, weight loss Niche or whatever and build a list in that.

But when I have a better understanding of creating many income streams online, then I can come back and create a product and teach others to do the same in the MMO Niche.

But as Winston Churchill said in 1941

“Never give in, never give in, never; never; never; never – in nothing, great or small, large or petty – never give in except to convictions of honor and good sense”

So if anyone has any ideas to what I should be doing just give us a shout of course I will really appreciate it.

Hope you are still around would love to read some comments.

Speak soon


PS I just created a facebook business page come be a friend check it out CLICK HERE


Hey everyone


Thanks so much for all the wonderful detailed comments you have been leaving me, it means a lot to me that people are still following my journey, and taking the time to leave me these awsome replies.


I will be back to answer you all individually.

All the best


48 thoughts on “Internet Marketing – I Am Failing Fast – So How Will I succeed?

  1. I experienced exactly the same problem as a result of ad swaps Marcus.

    I don’t think the problem is with ad swaps, I think it’s that we all did too many of them in too small a pool … so we were passing round the same subscribers and they were seeing the same old offers.

    I also took radical action:

    At the moment I’m busy getting back on track, like you’re just about to do.

    I’m actually doing more business with my targeted list of 1400 than I have ever done before (I deleted 2500+ inactive subscribers) and I’ve just had my most successful week ever promoting a product launch.

    I’m convinced that we should focus on list quality and response rate and not just list size … I think we get over excited about list size at our peril.

    I’m back to those high open and click rates now … but it takes some courage to delete inactive subscribers, and I’m still not entirely sure I did the tight thing.

    Good luck with getting back on track … and let me know if you’re up for a mini-Giveaway some time, they’re a tremendous way to add subscribers without annoying your list 🙂

    1. Paul

      Hey man thanks so much for popping by and what an awesome comment, you are exactly right I could also try swapping in other circles but im def gonna cut em down. I have a lot to learn in all aspects of marketing its only been a year and im gonna live the dream one day….

      Thanks again pal really appreciate the comment.


  2. Hey Marcus,

    Great to see you are still alive mate, I hadn’t heard anything from you for so long I wondered if you had jacked it in?

    The reason you had such great success early on was because you were being yourself – people could relate to you and looked to you for guidance, even if you were only one or two steps ahead of them.

    You gave real value to the newbie IM community and somewhere along the line that has got lost.

    Also, you need to keep marketing – if you go quiet for too long people will forget you and follow somebody else. IM seems to be a fickle business in that way…

    But all is not lost. Far from it. You know how to do all the stuff that makes you successful online – you know how to create value, build a list, a product and that can be transferred to ANY niche, not just IM.

    You just need to think about what it is you actually want to do and where/how you want to position yourself.

    As you (and indeed I) have learned, just pumping out tons of crappy adswap emails is a mug’s game – it will work in the short-term but people will soon get tired of just being on another “me too” marketer’s email list.

    I wish you all the best and keep in touch. You have my Skype if you want to talk.


  3. yo marcus
    great post, i can relate a lot to it and i know others will too. i have been too busy to crack on with the im game also. it needs to go on the back burner when more important issues are about. for im to work it needs our full attention and 100% effort.
    you are way ahead of myself and you know exactly what it takes to succeed so head up geezer, you will do the bizz!
    i know what you mean by looking at new fresher ways to get going and start going down a newer alley so to speak. the market seems to be saturated at the moment with lots of samey samey stuff and loads of crap.
    i dont even have a list built yet, but thats because i dont want to get into the ‘how to make money online’ market. i have just sorted out lots of personal issues and now i am ready to take this serious and start investigating other new fresh ideas.
    anyway mate, keep it up, i will be back soon to see where your going next and let you know about some fresh ideas im thinking of. time to think outside the box i reckon.
    remember my man, if we dont get this game up and running then its 48hrs a week for another 30 years!!!! this is the only way to get out of the bullcrap rat race butty

  4. Marcus

    Good to see you’re back (albeit not fully recharged!), as David rightly said don’t forget that you delivered real value before and will continue to do so.

    Just because things have taken a minor knock, don’t let it divert you off the course – the sales you have made to date are proof that you can crack this and generate money online!

    You were a trailblazer and an inspiration to a number of us, pushing ahead and leading the way, balancing a job, family and fledgling IM business and whilst it appears it may have taken its toll, perhaps you just need to re-evaluate your goals and priorities.

    As you say, the key is keeping things fresh and using the core skills that you have developed in order to develop new niches and products – there really is so much opportunity out there…. The IM niche is ultra-competitive so is difficult to crack what with all the investment people can put into their “glitzy” products and launches (which are often re-hashed content), but don’t let that stop you adding value and promoting products that are genuinely good.

    Whenever I get knocked off course or need a pick me up then I watch “The Secret” – not sure if you have seen it – a little cheesy but the concept behind it is sound, and I know its inspired a number of successful people online to great things….

    In terms of fresh ideas, if you can I would try and get yourself down to the Affiliate Millionaires Summit which Saj is running in London next weekend. Ill be going and I know Dean Holland is as well as a number of other marketers. Its free to attend and you should be able to pick up some ideas/concepts/techniques as well as do some networking (sorry, beginning to sound like a sales pitch!!). Maybe just the boost you need….

    Speak soon mate


  5. Hey Marcus,

    Again, something I need at the right timing. My process may seems slow as compared to others, yet I have progress more than before and still thank you for that.

    I do believe it all boils down to the basic again. There is money to be earned online definitely. At least now you had proofed that by making it yourself. You are on the next level, having the choice to choose how you can earned your money. It is no longer a way to earn money though, it had become a business for you.:)

    Thanks again for sharing your experience with me, my friend.

    Jason Ser

  6. Hey Marcus,

    Heart felt post Mr Passey, but never give up.

    I can relate to what you are saying, I came in to adswaps after a few of you and found that the list was OK, but pretty unresponsive. Only thing I can say is that maybe there are 100’s and thousands of marketers out there with so many free ebooks etc, they have given up anyway.

    As you know, I have taken Internet Marketing to Businesses and starting to see results, this was my choice and many others are going this route now. Instant money in your pocket selling what you already know alot about, but businesses want.

    In my honest opinion, the money to be made online is getting in to niches and some you wouldn’t even think about, really obscure ones and it is not just about click bank either, so many other ways that I now know work….. that is my opinion and when you get offered the make money over here products, its a system that make them successful not by promoting IM only (obviously with the product) but in the niches they are in.

    Any way mate, hope we can talk again soon, try me on skype 🙂

    Take care


  7. There’re ups and downs in cycle of life. That’s why it especially important for busy people like us to position our online business early on. So as to have more time to live our life the way we see fit.

    Do the right things long enough and it’ll happen for all of us.

    Cheekeong Tan

  8. Hello Marcus

    read your post and can totally agree with you.
    can I ask you a question. with the money you made did you reinvest back into the business?.
    I have brought many programs and spent thousands of pounds and havent got much further on until now.
    yes totally agree there is so much to learn and 95% fail.
    many of the gurus take 2 yrs to get going and this game all boils down to traffic by the bucket loads (paid or free) JVs only work when you have a good product to promote then loads of cash comes in.
    i have gone down the SEO whitehat route and payed a full time guy to work on our site. been 6 months but ranking on some powerful keywords which are just starting to get to page 1 and page 2 of google.
    next stage is to find a good copy writer for the site.
    as i said before do you put the money back into your business?
    there seems to be an inner circle of Internet marketers and i think we only get the information that works but not the major information that brings in the mega money.
    all the traffic that we are shown is only small compared to what is need to make a great living.
    have you got google webmaster tools on your site its free and it tells you what keywords your ranking on?
    email me if you want a chat
    speak soon

  9. Hey Pass!

    Don’t sweat it mate! Yeah, the route that got you to where you are isn’t as effective any more but it’s not like your short of ideas or contacts that’ll give you a good push into the next phase of your journey!!

    This point is where many people have lost money and quit…you’ve made money in round 1 and now you’re just looking at a different approach for round 2 (when you’ve had what sounds like some well deserved rest!).

    I actually never got round to doing any adswaps in my list building…but I wouldn’t write them off just yet and I don’t think it’s dead! Around 8 months ago it seemed like everyone was saying twitter was dead, too full of spammers (which it was)…but since then 90% of the spammers have faded away and the medium is being reclaimed by real people. I guess what I’m saying is that it all goes in cycles so maybe take a break for a while and let all the negative elements in swapping burn themselves out, then we’ll get back involved with a selective approach and less frequent swapping.

    (** RJB **)

  10. Oh guys I am touched really loving these long detailed comments, thanks so much for taking the time to give me some good advice.I will be back to answer everyone individually. Thanks again for the support..


  11. Marcus, what up dawg! I remember you from last summer in your Year of 2 Mentors… I was cuzin tim in DH’s Marketing Academy. Starting over again? No you’re not man. You’re WAAAAAYYYY ahead of the game now. I learned a few golden tid bits on that forum from you.

    You just need a wider scope now man. I’m glad I failed at my attempt in the MMO niche & spread to other niches. OK I am still making some monthly residuals off Aweber on that site but I shut my main site down. I actually seen you tonight on a Jeremy thread so checked up to see what you been up to. Follow him & Don, they know their niche stuff. Have you seen their forum yet? Lots of good marketers & straight content there.

    If you get into other niches, you use a pen name so your name per se isn’t on the line like in the MMO niche. You can screw up & abandon it & it’s just a waste of some time. When you find something that works, then you can work it, tweak it & go from there. Your experiences & failures can filter into your blog here & you will be helping others like you did in the beginning.

    Personally I think you’re an intelligent dude & getting bored from just 1 niche. Time to get into other niches then outsource writing etc. then other tasks & scale up what’s working. Again I failed at MMO niche 1st time but now after doing grunt work myself & starting to outsource (YAY!) I have stats & learned a TON from the process that I can share on my new blog I’m starting up.

    Best of luck Brother (I know you don’t need it but giving it here anyways cuz who can have too much luck?),


  12. Hey Marcus. Never give up mate. Its all about finding your strenghts and talents and working with those. I learnt this from Rich Sheferen the mentor to the mentors. I have stopped seeking all the different opportunities out there and am now focusing on building a real business focusing on what I do best and skills. In my case aviation and flying. \The internet will go the way of market Leadership and we have to find a market and dominate it.This is what Google likes too.

    Yes a small highly responsive well targeted list will always do better than a large unresponsive list . relationship is the key.

    I am fortunate to be having dinner tonight with Ed dale and the legendary John Carlton and any info I get from them I will share with you guys.But from talking to Ed dale lately market leadership is where its heading. Dont discount offline either as businesses are failing and need our help. Just look in your own community and you will see all the struggling businesses and we have the answer for them. Get leads for them to a website.

    Rich Shefren just re opened his mentor program at a hugely discounted rate. Just Google it.Its about building a real strategic business.

    He is the mento to the mentors like he mentored Alex,Mike filsaime, dan Kennedy , john Carlton, Jay Abraham to name a few. Once I learnt his stuff I dropped everything. i was in the dark so long until he opened the light. Ah ha moment after ah ha moment. If you can tafford him you can get a 30 day trial one buck to his program then $47 a month. Its so so so so worth it.

    Thats my say and I hope i have helped. You have helped the newbie community so much. I even bought your program
    Please please never give up Find a way and push through for you and family. I urge you all to check Rich out


  13. Hi Marcus,
    Good post thanks
    I am a student of Mark Terrell’s coaching and he just sent your book to me, congrats on your first ebook. I am just looking at adswaps now and enjoyed reading the comments I will try them .

    I would like if you could stop by my blog and check it out
    Thank you for the info

  14. Hey Marcus
    Whew, I bet everyone reading your post sat back, as I did, and totally related to everything you spoke of.

    The family, the day job, being Knackered, the ups, the downs, the “I’ve made it feeling” (well O.K. I’ve yet to get to that one), the loss of confidence etc etc

    However, It’s only when you sit down and take a long hard look at everything can you make the adjustments necessary to get back on track and it seems to me, you have already done this – and now all you need is that little push to your “Get Up and Go” to Go for it.

    Your comment boxes are filled wth a “Who’s Who of Names” who all think very highly of you and whose observations of the current market are very valuable to all of us.

    So, persistance and maybe a slight change in direction could work wonders.
    All the best and keep your pecker up 😉

  15. Hey everyone


    Thanks so much for all the wonderful detailed comments you have been leaving me, it means a lot to me that people are still following my journey, and taking the time to leave me these awsome replies.


    I will be back to answer you all individually.

    All the best


  16. Yeah people burn out their lists using adswaps. The other thing you need to start doing as opposed to sending out offers is creating your own products.

    For example, send out a survey to your list and see what people really want to learn. Then create a product.

    When you send someone else to an offer other than yours, the subscriber will believe that your not the person to go to for that area of marketing.

    Seo is a major factor in my business. I have also started building sites that are for the long term. i.e seo will take 6 months to get the results needed but on average this will achieve $3000-$4000 in adsense earnings. I realised building sites like this are increasingly important considering competition will be much tougher in the next 5 years, as many others will have had a head start in their backlinking efforts.


    Hey man thanks so much for popping by and what an awesome comment, you are exactly right I could also try swapping in other circles but im def gonna cut em down. I have a lot to learn in all aspects of marketing its only been a year and im gonna live the dream one day….

    Thanks again pal really appreciate the comment.



    Alright pal, nah man not given up still here just a little deflated.

    Did you get my pic on facebook of us in Vegas, oh and I hear your having a little Walker congrats mate.

    Yes excellant points you make there mate, I also know I have a lot to learn but one day I will live the dream.

    I will make it mate its gonna happen.

    Learning a ton of stuff so lets see what happens.

    Ill skype ya soon pal.

    Thanks for the comment mate really appreciate it.



  19. @ NICKY

    Hey Nicky great comment mate you write like you are in my head.

    Great comments you make there my friend and ive taken it all on board. All the comments I have got I will read over again some great stuff here.

    Thanks for taking the time to visit me pal.

    All the best


  20. Hiya Marcus,

    Do you know what I love, your honesty!

    At least you are not trying to pull the wool over peoples eyes.

    I have never done adswaps, I have hummed and hawed about them, and decided I would never do them to build my list.

    You just confirmed that I made the right decision.

    I would rather have a tiny responsive list than a massive unresponsive one.

    Keep looking for the BMW 3 series, now you know what the problem is, you are sure to fix it.

    I think it’s good to think outwith the Internet marketing niche too, I just dont have a clue how to do it, so I would be the first in line to jump all over a report you write about how to do it the right way.

    I am glad you have stayed positive, it’s much easier to just give up!

    I know as much as anyone how difficult it is juggling family, work and online stuff too, there just never seems like enough hours in the day!

    Good luck Marcus, it’s obvious you have a lot of people who care about you online and are willing to help you out, I for one will help in any way I can.

    Sally 🙂

  21. Hey Marcus,

    serious dude – I LOVE IT,

    listen … we all had rocky starts … and when i started out online it was just the same story as you, burned out and tired of everyone else making money when i was making NOTHING.

    dude you know what im about to say right,

    you now know what to do and you have done it already.

    so do it again,


    i mean everything,

    find out what is important to you ( family – football etc )

    and plan in time for these things FIRST.

    then ofcourse there is that dredded JOB so plan that in,


    take a shower … go put a plan together how to build a RESPONSIVE
    list in your spare time,

    look when i started i didnt watch TV for about a year.

    these days i have multiple plazmas in houses i dont live in
    half the year,

    now dude, you have what it takes okay – you know i personally believe in you and recommend you and so do your fellow students.

    your story is GREAT.

    serious it is,

    and in a year or two you will look back while living the dream lifestyle and be able to review your GROWTH right here at your blog.

    do not let the day to day get you down.


    put the plan together of your TIME

    look at what free time you have left – and start building a new list
    that you can build relationships with and in return promote products to them 🙂

    its so simple bro – we both know it, and you are way ahead of most people on this earth.

    if you ever need a chat – please hit me up.

    be happy to interview you again too … get ya some MASSIVE exposure for my upcoming launch …

    to yours and your readers success

    Alex Jeffreys

    ps – Build Value – Build a List = $$$ simple and you know it
    so when you gonna get the BMW bro?

  22. Hey Marcus!!
    Congrats on the wee one!
    Failing? Or just learning? You have come a long way since last year and your honesty here shows people that we can’t get complacent. And that not all of us are cut out for MMO Niche.

    Figure out what you like to do and go with it! Something you have experience in that you really like to do and if you had to write about it all day, you could.

    Then find out who your customers are. Write out who your ideal customer is. Where do they live? What kind of information are they willing to pay for? How old are they? Kids? Dogs? Income? You know stuff like that! You don’t want to market a product to people who don’t have money!! (starving students would NOT be a good market)

    They find or make a product and Viola! Information marketer success!

    I think with all the MMO training, we all get hyped up that we too can be a success in that niche. Well, do you really know how to make money online when you start out? Nope. And then teach other people how to make money online when you aren’t really sure yourself? That will burn out a list, too!

    Ad swaps? I have been told to do them, but after seeing all the crap, I have decided NOT to do any. Why have an unresponsive list?
    Better to make your own product outside of MMO and build a list of people who want what you have to offer than a big list with a 1% open rate!

    Marcus, I think you are seriously on the right track. Would some of these MMO gurus make any money if they weren’t trying to show new people how to make money online? Probably not. Can they do anything else?? Who knows?

    Keep pluggin, find your true love and keep your chin up!

    And when you have to go to that day job….be thankful for it (some folks don’t have one!!) until you don’t have to do it any more!! 🙂

    Take care and God bless!! 🙂


  23. Hi Marcus

    That was a great heartfelt post my friend. I am currently just startting to do adswaps and have seen good list growth but only a few sales. I have considered calming down and concentrating on adding value.

    I have built a new system and will see if that improves growth and sales and after that….well …..niche site???

    Listen mate thanks again…you have always been an inspiration to me as I am alos an Alex Jeffreys student. So keep yur head up…..and make more dough!!! LOL

    Cheers my man


  24. Hey Marcus

    I can seriously relate to you losing focus. At times it is really difficult especially if you’ve done all this work and then maybe have to start from scratch.

    Sometimes it’s best to cut away the deadwood i.e non active subscribers and start from scratch.

    I neglected to email my subscibers at one point and when I did, most of them un-subscibed probably because they didn’t remember who I was.

    The failures will only make you stronger and more determined to succeed especially if you see the newer marketers making good money. I remember that happening to me and that really p***ed me off.

    So I regained my focus and my drive and found that there is still much money to be made in the numerous niches out there. You have the great foundation and knowledge to start over if you have to so good luck to you.

    Best wishes

  25. Hi Marcus,

    First: Stop beating yourself up! You have a full time job, family and kids!! These have to come first.

    Second: One day, one task at a time!

    Third: “The tortoise always wins the race” Slow and steady is my moto!

    I learned the hard way many years ago when I created 2 business in the offline world. Spent a fortune, had great ideas etc etc, then the government changed the laws and one of my businesses went bust!! I lost a $%^&*( load, I lost everything except my clothes!

    Take your time, learn what you need to learn, don’t rush things, be patient and what is more have faith!

    Have faith in yourself, have faith in your dreams.

    Stay focused!


    Jacinta 😀

  26. Marcus sometimes you gotta rest or you get burnt out. My mother use to have a saying ” I might give out but I don’t give up”. You just gotta refocus and find ways to maximize time and that includes finding time to relax.

  27. Hi Marcus,

    I almost want to drive over and sit down with you and go through a business plan with you. But you know what that wouldn’t guarantee any kind of success, not because of the plan but because there is no way of telling whether you would stick to it.

    That’s not just you, that’s everyone in a similar situation.

    They don’t stick because they don’t have the belief and I believe you may be in that situation. Your confidence will return and like you said you have been spending time with your family.

    When I see what you have achieved to date I know you can be successful. You aren’t one of these people that say they are going to do something and not do it. You went out there and did, you did create a product. There is a massive amount to be said for that.

    So here are some specifics that will hopefully help you, but by all means get back to me.

    Hopefully you can tell from our previous conversations that I do care about your success and whilst I know you are very busy the number of hours you have left is almost irrelevant. You know if you had a plan and stuck to it for say 7 hours a week you would achieve a lot more than jumping from one thing to the next with no direction with say 20 hours a week to spare.

    So try to dismiss the time aspect, the application of small steps repeatedly over time is the thing that will pull you through.

    I’m have been in this game for about 12 years and went full time on the 31st January 2003 so there was 4 years of IM and a full time job before going full time in IM- so I would stay take a step back and think to yourself that you haven’t been doing this very long, you have made money, and you are more than capable of being a very successful marketer.

    The funny thing is (well it wasn’t back then) was the February and the March after I went full time my income toppled. That was a wake up call and I realised going full time wasn’t a total bed of roses. I pretty quickly realised a lot of my businesses (not sure I even used that word back then!) were built like a house of cards. Luckily for me Google Adsense launched in June 2003 and roll on the happy days. I could almost forget everything I knew about affiliate marketing and solely dedicate myself to playing the Google arbitage game making site after site. So effectively I was gaming the system, though I do still say I paid significant sums to have great content written (none of this PLR rubbish) and my sites were good – but as we all know when Google started slapping in 2006 and there was no stopping them. There is no place for the little man’s antics when the likes of BP are spendind $3.59 million on Adwords (this happened in June).

    The same way over time how I started to see the light and realise how things revolve and mature is the same process you have been through. Don’t be so hard on yourself, you have had success and failure. If someone tells me they have never made a mistake, I tell them to stop pussy footing around and start working harder. You have to make mistakes to move forward.

    You have seen both sides of the adswaps game, but like David Walker I agree it’s a mug’s game. I do wish newbies weren’t taught to do this but that’s the way the cookie crumbles . Even at 10% open rate you had no real business (sorry to be harsh but I don’t want to BS you) If it had been at a bare minimum of 25% and sometimes up to 60%+ in the IM space then you could possibly spend the majority of your efforts in the MMO niche.

    I actually recorded a chat with Neil Stafford yesterday on how to get your emails opened and some strategy on turning an unresponsive list into a responsive one. This advice is based on years of experience and we do go over how someone in your situation could begin to increase their open rate.

    If you consider you are at 2% at worst, than you really have nothing to lose and I would suggest writing to your list as a friend twice a week for at least 3 weeks – without a mention of a promotion (if you do make sure it is just in the p.s.) This would be a kind of detox. In the chat we talk about story telling strategies that would definitely be of benefit to you. In a nutshell though you need to differentiate yourself by not being the same as all the other marketers, you need to inject some personality into your writing. To influence someone they must become fascinated with you (In my golf marketing I play on the fact I live in St Andrews the home of golf as many long to play there one day and are fascinated with anything related to it) So with whatever direction you take you need to find a way for your list to become fascinated in you. If you stick in the MMO niche the fascination could come from your highs and lows and the journey you are on. You do need to be honest and that’s where you are in pole position with blog posts like this one.

    Your falling open rate could be put down to one thing and that is people have lost the reason to open and read your emails. There absolutely has to be a reason to open and it can’t be so they can receive another pitch 🙂 So the reason could be to be entertained (goes back to the storytelling) or it could be because they will receive great content. The reality is people don’t want more information, they are up to their eyes in it, they want faith in you – to believe they will be successful following your advise and experience. This is why if someone sent out a tutorial on aweber with lots of details versus someone sending out their own experiences and what they learnt including their mistakes – the second guy would always wins hands down in having his emails read because he is offering a story.

    We have talked about going outside the IM niche and I know there are opportunities there for you. If the dream is to be full time in information marketing outside IM(as an aside try to forget the term “internet marketing” – but by saying information marketing instead you will tend to think of it more as a business and also open your mind to online and offline)you should now use this time to really assess what market will exist for the next 20 – 30 years.

    My advice would be to think about markets and the pain people have and thus the solutions they look for. I’m getting back to 101 basics here but you know this usually comes early in the learning cycle and then gets forgotten as one is swallowed up by the noise generated by yet another system to game Facebook or Twitter.

    I could list dozens and dozens of so called IM gurus that were around for a few years and have now disappeared. Hopefully they went into other businesses and are doing well but a bit like popstars there are always flavours of the month. I always give the advice of unsubscribing from all the IM gurus and then resigning up to only the ones that offer real content using a secondary email account and then only checking that on a Friday for half an hour (certainly not at the beginning of the week) Everyone that does this feels such a relief and a massive weight of their shoulders.

    There is so much noise in the IM space and always will be because if you look at the last 100 years in the information business the biggest profits have been made in health and losing weight etc, Relationships / love and make money (home ops etc) where IM sits. Human psychology won’t change and thus these markets will always be the top ones and thus good luck if you can make a consistent fulltime income in one of them but really the opportunity for many of us is in all the millions of other niches.

    I choose golf and stuck at it because one it worked for me and I was passionate about the subject. People have been on my list for years and even though in year 1 I built the list to 60k and then 120k in the second year the open rates never dropped below 35%. Even with a list growing like that my concern was always about conversion rather than size of list. In fact I would say we are more in an age of conversion rules than any of time. A successful marketer will work on gaining traffic from a number of sources with consistent action each and every week. It does make me shudder when I see the latest and greatest new loop home traffic system, wouldn’t a marketer be more interested in methods that have worked for over 10 years. This weekend I will be watching article marketing expert Steve Shaw speak and I know this will be more useful to me than any hyped up system you see promoted week in and week out. So what I’m trying to say is whatever direction you turn Marcus you must build your business on extremely solid foundations. This isn’t the time to experiment, if you do you will rise and fall again.

    As you know I’m always on Skype to discuss these things and I really want you to succeed.



  28. Thanks Doug,

    When I write comments like that I do run the risk of sounding like an old man, but I hope the business logic comes through. Plus I do harp on about copywriting ( see I go again!) because I know this is the most important skill IMHO all marketers should possess but unfortunately it often gets missed. I try not to look back too much but wish I had known this a lot earlier in my career.

    I trained as an architect and wish I had been into business earlier but trying to make up for it now.

    That’s enough looking back for one comment!

    Anyway life moves on and I am convinced in a few years Marcus will almost use this blog post in his “story” as to this was the point when he took his business to new heights.

    One thing I forgot to mention is the magic of just documenting your profit and loss to date including all the start ups costs and ongoing costs. We all get pitched I made $5k in a week or whatever, but the only thing that counts is net profit.

    Many reading this will watch Dragon’s Den and it’s scary the tiny net profit some people have on a huge revenue. They almost take pride in a turn over of £400k when the net profit is £20k. Very strange, I know it doesn’t sell but when you find an IM mentor talking about net profit you have come across a rare breed.

    I believe Marcus could expand on what he has learnt to date in his future emails to his list. Imagine if he sent out am email title the facts, that just simply documents all his financials to date and then promised to continue talking about his net profit in more detail in his next email – almost as a soap opera with cliff hangers at the end of each one. This would engage his readers, because he is speaking about the nitty gitty, no glossing over anything. I bet he would see his open rate increase just by having a natural and honest conversation with his list.

    One email could even be titled “sorry”. Then he starts by saying look I’m sorry I abused your trust and sent you loads of promotions (some I had never looked at) but it’s time for a clean slate. I have learnt a lot and I want to share this information with you.

    I’m getting quite excited now because 2 emails a week for the next 3 weeks with this approach will see results in terms of building back the trust he once had with his list.

    Then and this is the important bit you could start to segment the list into specific areas related to IM. In time this will mean your promotions will only go to the most targeted people.

    (Marcus get back to me if you want to talk about the mechanics of doing this, in fact anyone ask me)

    Must cut this short before it turns into another war and peace 🙂



  29. Hi Marcus & Andy,

    Just popped back to see what you are doing.

    Andy WOW on your response!!

    That is actually perfect timing for me as I was just watching “Newsletter Success Formula” by Martin Avis about developing newsletters and he says exactly what you have said.

    About being personal and delivering content and making them fun and entertaining.

    Perfect Timing!


    Jacinta 🙂

  30. Guys Guys …WOW thanks so much for these awesome comments Andy that is a masterpiece my friend, ill be back to answer you all personally soon..Excellent I am choked by the replies thanks so much it means a lot..


  31. Hey Marcus,

    Thanks for being so honest and open about your journey. You know, so many internet marketers just show a fake side of themseleves and try to give the impression to everyone that they are making 6 figures a month just doing two hours of work a day. People are fed up with that BS and the fact that you’re being real and showing that running an online business really does has it’s ups and downs will go down so well with your readers.

    Infact, they will be able to connect with you more, so thank you for being a real man and showing your real side!

    I’m sure I won’t have to tell you this, but everyone goes through some cycles and phases. Growth in an online business isn’t a linear line that goes up and up, there are phases and depends on your own life situation (I understand the commitments you have as a father, having a job and family too), the business plan and the execution of it.

    You’ve already had good success already and that to me proves that you’ve got what it takes. I don’t believe that anyone needs to tell you what you need to do now, because I think deep down you already know what you need to do.

    Remember the time you first motivated to create your first product and concentrated on building the list and then you saw the results? How did you get the passion and fire to do it? How did you concentrate your time? If you remember that journey, you will be in that frame of mind to know what you did and how you’re going to take your business to the next level.

    One other thing that Alex told me and I think it’s a great reminder for all of us: He said “Don’t chase the money. If you chase the money it will elude you. Focus on giving value and helping people, and they money will come to you.”

    Now I know you’ve had that philosophy before and saw the results from it because I know you as “Marcus the friend”. That’s your email handle.

    I know you’re gonna get up from this and kick ass. I’m looking forward to your future success mate.


  32. Hey Marcus,

    Great post mate. I’m not as advanced as you at the moment but have the same problem just come up. My list is over 500 now and I made a few sales to it.

    I went on holidays for a few weeks and when I came back my list was completely unresponsive. The past week now I have been trying to warm them up with good info but it’s taking time.

    I am only doing 3 swaps a week 2 content emails and one promo per week.

    I got some great help from Davin Ogden on looking after my list and what he has taught me is really helping.

    Hope the little one is doing well as I have a two year old myself and to say it’s hard work is an understatment when the bills still have to be paid.

    I know you will get things back on track my friend.
    Chin up


  33. Hi Marcus

    If you have kinda lost your way do what Alex suggested I did – go back to the modules and re-listen to them. This maybe help you get back what you had before. You’ve already done it once, you can do it again.
    Go Back to basics and get the momentum back again.

    Good luck


  34. Hey Marcus,

    Thanks for being honest and sharing what doesn’t work. Like so many comments say, you have what it takes to make it and I believe you will find the way leading to great success.

    So many people are behind you that it’s virtually impossible for you not to come back to the top where you belong.


  35. Hi Marcus

    Great to see you back and you are baring your soul for all to see. Sometimes we do allow ourselves to get that feeling but I think this will put you right back on top.

    Like to let you know I have finished my course with Mark Terrell and I thoroughly enjoyed it. I was looking forward to a break but instead it looks like I have to put my new found skills to use and launch a physical product in the next four weeks.

    So I hope all is going well for you and you are achieving what you set out to do.

    To your continued success


  36. Dont worry Marcus – I am sure with a bit of hard work and application our Niche Marketing plan will work well.

    If we can get another couple of focussed invividuals together we will drive each other on, and we can do it in several niches.

    Speak Soon


  37. Hi Marcus,

    Wow time flies…it has been over 10 months since we last saw you in Las Vegas.

    We loved your post and the comments from your followers have been awesome. Keep on – Keeping on and you will see the success that you dream about. Keep hope in your heart and keep taking action. That formula works now and forever!

  38. Hey there! This is my first comment here so I just wanted to give a quick shout out and say I truly enjoy reading through your blog posts. Can you recommend any other blogs/websites/forums that go over the same topics? Thanks a lot!

  39. Thanks for being so honest and open about your journey. You know, so many internet marketers just show a fake side of themselves and try to give the impression to everyone that they are making 6 figures a month just doing two hours of work a day.

  40. Keep on – Keeping on and you will see the success that you dream about. Keep hope in your heart and keep taking action.

  41. Like to let you know I have finished my course with Mark Terrell and I thoroughly enjoyed it. I was looking forward to a break but instead it looks like I have to put my new found skills to use and launch a physical product in the next four weeks. | 😛

  42. I think with all the MMO training, we all get hyped up that we too can be a success in that niche. Well, do you really know how to make money online when you start out? Nope. And then teach other people how to make money online when you aren’t really sure yourself!. thanks for stopping by!

  43. dear *Marcus, first of all you should not apologize to everybody for spending time with your family and family affairs! they are more important than you blogging and writing stuff! but nevertheless you blog is still a hit, a great post!! real tips for real people unlike those corporate comments and tips!! keep up the good work!

  44. Marcus sometimes you gotta rest or you get burnt out. My mother use to have a saying ” I might give out but I don’t give up”. You just gotta refocus and find ways to maximize time and that includes finding time to relax.

  45. Thanks for stopping by! I think with all the MMO training, we all get hyped up that we too can be a success in that niche. Well, do you really know how to make money online when you start out? Nope. And then teach other people how to make money online when you aren’t really sure yourself? That will burn out a list, too! Thanks for the info.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *