When does persistence become pig-headedness and does it matter?

Persistence is a wonderful attribute. Without persistence, no one would ever overcome adversity. But when persistence becomes pigheadedness then the virtue becomes a millstone around your neck.

Building a business of any type online or offline requires persistence. You need to have a plan and follow through on it. That doesn’t necessarily mean that the plan has to be rigid. Flexibility should be built into your plan to enable you to respond to the data that you gather as you become involved in the business.

Photo by Brett Sayles from Pexels

What data gets gathered?

That’s up to the business owner, but I well remember a sales course that I went on in my banking days where the facilitator hit me between the eyes with a statement – if it’s worth doing – it’s worth tracking.

You can flip the statement around if you like by asking the question: How do you know what’s worth doing if you’re not measuring it?

To persist in doing something that offers no reward might seem admirable but it is akin to insanity. If you’re in business you’re going to need to understand the sales and engagement process. The days of throwing a heap of stuff against a wall and hoping something sticks are gone.

The more you measure, the more data you have. The more data you have, the more likely you are to make good decisions. Of course, it takes time and it can be a little confusing at first. But the aim of tracking is ultimately to measure conversions. That’s why everything in the sales process should be measured. Every squeeze page. Every landing page. Every email. Every blog post (although monetising blog posts is an entirely different subject now that Hive is a reality).

This is where persistence is invaluable. It takes commitment to track each component and to constantly split test and tweak for better results. If you’re not using a tracker, I highly recommend the tracking system offered by Leads Leap

But..persistence isn’t always well placed

Too often people don’t track what they’re doing – either because they don’t know how or why or because the people “helping” them have told them not to.

“Just promote our affiliate link” is the equivalent of an invitation to a business death by a thousand cuts. Invariably this “instruction” is followed by “just work harder” or “spend more money on advertising.”

Excuse me, but that’s just cynical exploitation of enthusiasm and commitment. People’s willingness to persist is exploited to their detriment. That’s where persistence can easily devolve into dogged pigheadedness. Don’t go there.

SImply promoting an affiliate link on any advertising platform is like putting all your eggs in one basket. And the basket has a hole in it.

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This Make Money Online caper is a journey that is by no means linear. There are no guarantees and there are more downs than ups- particularly in the startup stage. The success rate is often stated to be around the 5% mark. The reasons I see for this abysmal statistic are unrealistic expectations, poor advice, insufficient research and lack of preparation. Very rarely is a lack of persistence an issue.

The dropout rate in the first six months is staggering. The glitter wears off pretty quickly and the shiny business opportunity that the new marketer bought into invariably proves much harder to sell than the sales copy promised. Often at this time, the person who sold them the biz opp exhorts them to either work harder or to spend more on advertising. I remember years ago attending a “sales meeting” for one of the premier “online businesses” where the leaders were really only interested in how much credit we had available to buy their advertising packages. The red flags were waving pretty hard for me that day. “Help” often comes with more than a few strings attached. Persistence is encouraged in many cases because commissions are involved. The longer you can be encouraged to “hang in” the more money can be siphoned off you.

When people fail at online business, invariably they’ve been drawn into a scenario like what I’ve described above. They don’t own a business – a business opportunity owns them. The cart has been placed well and truly before the horse and while persistence is an admirable virtue, the foray into online business is doomed to fail.

It takes a certain type of person to want to own and run a business online. They are blessed with a lot of necessary elements to succeed. Hunger, enthusiasm, willingness to work and persistence are all givens.

The key elements that probably separate those that succeed from those that don’t are preparation, planning, patience and a preparedness to promote in a unique way that puts the building of relationships first.

Get your ducks in a row.

Photo by Pixabay at Pexels

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