Digital marketing

How self-discipline brought in big bucks

- April 12, 2012 3 MIN READ

Self-discipline sounds boring, but thanks to being strict with my focus and my time, I was recently able to generate $10,000 in just four days. Here’s how.

There was no black magic, no voodoo, no special skills and no expensive software. Just self-discipline.

Let’s back up a bit and take a look at the ducks I needed to get lined up before I could pull this off.

I’d already spent a couple of years getting to know my perfect customer. (Note that I prefer the concept of a “perfect customer” to “target audience” because it allows me to optimise everything I do in my business to get the best result for that one perfect customer, rather than trying to please a fictitious number of people who fit a vague description of demographics and buying behaviour).

I had also surveyed my database and asked them what their biggest problems were and how I could help them. It’s amazing the feedback people will willingly give you if you just ask.

Armed with that information, I created a solution to their problem that’s the best of its kind on the market. Crucially, my customers are the ones who are repeatedly telling me this is the case.

I spent considerable time and effort promoting my solution via social media and my website, and offered my market a sample (or teaser) of my solution in the form of an online demo they could take for a spin to test it out. This was hugely valuable and I would argue has been the biggest sales conversion tactic I have used.

Once customers signed up for the demo or the real thing I worked hard to nurture those relationships by continuing to add value to them, usually by automated email responses that gave them tips, advice and power-tricks to help them get better results in their business. Most of this information has nothing to do with the solution I sell, but it helps position me as an expert in my field so that when I do offer to sell them something I get great conversion rates.

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Finally, I painstakingly and meticulously analysed everything I was doing to make sure I was sticking to my plan.

The result of this very elegant system is that I’ve built a small but loyal following of about 2,200 people all over the world who anticipate my emails and respond when I ask them to take action.

And it was by offering that list of 2,200 followers something for sale the week before Christmas that I managed to generate $10,000 in four days.

So while most internet marketers talk about sales conversion rates of 2 percent being good, I’m getting conversions of 6 percent and higher on a regular basis. And I’m still analysing and optimising to get better.

What has self-discipline got to do with any of this? Well the only way I can get all of this done is to frequently turn off the emails, silence the phone and block out slabs of time on my calendar when I’m unavailable for anything. Even meeting potential new clients. (That’s right, I meet potential new clients only when I have time scheduled in my calendar for client meetings – regardless of how big the potential new deal might be). I need to have blocks of time where I’m uninterrupted and not distracted by emails, texts, phone calls, social media, news headlines or commercials.

The big mistake I see soloists making time and time again is convincing themselves that busy-ness is the same as business. If you’re not busy doing the right kind of work, you’ll chase your own tail into the black hole of hard work and no gain.

So if you don’t have a rock solid plan for how you’re going to grow your business, block some time out of your calendar right now so you can answer these three questions:

  1. Who is your perfect customer?
  2. What is their big, painful problem?
  3. How can you solve it?

Are you a strict self-disciplinarian too? How has self-discipline paid off for you?