Escape Velocity, Gravity, and Focus

Ever notice, as an internet entrepreneur, the temptation to diversify your focus into a multitude of markets, partnerships, joint ventures, sources of traffic, conversion methods, and marketing techniques  is seemingly irresistible?

I think there are MANY factors driving this rather neurotic tendency we all seem to struggle with (including, and perhaps especially, yours truly!)

  • Traffic sources are inherently unstable.   Google’s always changing the rules for both Adwords and SEO.  Social Media is a wild new animal hardly anyone really understands yet.   The email landscape is  subject to various laws, filters, and conventions (people have been crying “email marketing is dead” since I first started studying internet marketing back in 1998),  there are constant mergers and acquisitions, talk about taxes and online restrictions, FTC regulations, etc.
  • A Tremendous Number of Skills Are Required to Succeed:   Research, copywriting, pay per click, blogging, systems development, market evaluation, human resources, management, legal, communications, emotional marketing and imagery, time management, accounting, html, javascript, blogging (you can outsource these last three  – oh yeah, you gotta know how to outsource well too)… I could go on and on.     The point is, NOBODY really is strong at all of these, so we’re all constantly searching for partners, JVs, and vendors to fill in the gaps
  • Dreaming is a LOT More Fun Than Doing:   Setting up a marketing system (and the business to support it) is a lot of WORK.  It’s a lot more fun to consume the latest marketing package than to EXECUTE the latest marketing package.     (I still remember when this hit me.  In the midst of near bankruptcy back in 2003, I LOVED nothing better than to fill up my MP3 player with PPC and Copywriting gurus and just go walk in the mountains all day long.   It’s GREAT that I did this… I wouldn’t know what I know at this time if I hadn’t.  But the point is, we all need to ensure we’re “dreaming to live” and NOT “living to dream”)
  • We Live With Constant Disappointment:  Because it’s rare that people thoroughly do their research and cash flow projections for a project… and then put in the necessary time, effort, and resources against a very realistically estimated growth curve, what happens to most entrepreneurs can only be described as episodic mania followed by severe disappointment (and depression).   It’s only human nature to run to the NEXT project dream when this happens.

Now, I’ve been fond of telling people “it takes 85% of a rocket’s fuel to achieve ‘escape velocity’ and get into outer space… the rest of the ride to the moon is mostly coasting and steering.”  I say that in order to assuage people’s anxiety, and to help motivate them through the “hump” required to get their projects off the ground.

But suddenly it hit me…

If it takes 85% of your fuel to get off the ground, then trying to launch four rockets at the same time is a losing game.  You simply can’t put 25% of your fuel into each rocket and expect it to do anything but fall back under the weight of the Earth’s gravity.

So, DESPITE the fears, insecurities, and constantly changing landscape of the internet, or perhaps BECAUSE of them, the spoils really go to those with persistence, fortitude, and FOCUS!

If you’re a member of Glenn Club, you know how psychotically I focus on choosing the right keyword conversation for your market, so YOU can narrow down your focus to exactly the right competitors, do exactly the right survey and interview research, and really dominate that keyword space.

But I’m talking about something way beyond your keyword space, I’m talking about your whole business.

What’s the single most important project in your business?  Are you focusing 85% of your resources on it?

Something worth thinking about, don’t you think?

Dr. G 🙂

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