Many newbie marketers mistakenly believe that once someone achieves success online, everything runs smoothly and effortlessly from that point on. The truth is, top online entrepreneurs are constantly conducting an analysis of what they are doing so that they can achieve new heights in their business.
As we wrap up 2023, the people who are earning the most money online are engaged in seven tasks that will help them retain their spot as niche leaders. And those who are climbing the ranks rapidly are doing the same.
If you want to have a chance at growing your own success with an Internet-based business, you need to adopt the same habits and take an approach that will not only deliver additional revenue for you but give you more personal satisfaction, too.
Below, you’ll see what people are doing when they have learned what it takes to not only reach a certain level of success but also retain it against the slew of competitors that are constantly trying to edge them out.
Getting Ready to Cancel Wrong People And Projects
One of the first things I will do when planning for the next year is to go over the projects I’ve been immersed in within the past 12 months and see what needs to be culled.
Eliminating projects that are not delivering in terms of a good return on their investment of time and money is something every entrepreneur and corporation has to do in order to ensure an efficient use of their resources.
Even though you may have a passion for something, if you are pouring a lot of time and effort into a project and it is failing to pay off for you. You either have to take a deep dive into why it’s not working and then make changes or cut it out altogether.
Projects are not the only thing you’ll need to weed out. You need to take a look back on the past year to see which people have been nothing more than an anchor weighing you down.
Sometimes, this won’t even be in your professional life, but in your personal one. If you have people who are unsupportive or disruptive in your life and you feel as if you cannot soar in your success with them nearby, you need to put boundaries in place so that you are unaffected by them.
But in your professional life, you’re going to have some people that you need to weed out because they have developed a bad reputation, and you don’t want to be aligned with them and painted with the same brush. As you know, in the last few years I’ve collaborated with many people, but some were not good enough.
You may also want to eliminate the association with anyone who is constantly taking from you but has nothing (or refuses) to give anything back. Support should not be a one-way street, but something that marketers do for one another whenever possible.
Gearing Up for an Improved and Targeted Niche Audience Approach
As you close out this year and get ready to embark on a fresh one, you want to look at how you have been targeting your niche audience and see what needs to change in the near future.
There are many different smaller tasks associated with this period. For example, if you have a blog, you need to look at keywords to see if you are using the right ones that your specific target audience is currently using online.
Another thing you may need to do is evaluate whether your niche audience has changed completely. Sometimes, you’ll realize that your business needs to expand or narrow down significantly.
You may find that you have a high response with seniors or women, for example. Instead of trying to cast a wide net that caters to the needs of everyone, you may have better success and earn more by adjusting your niche audience to those who need your help the most.
Another thing you need to do when it comes to improving your niche audience approach is to look at what their current preferences are. This can evolve from time to time, so it’s a good thing to check in at least once a year, if not more.
First, look at how your products are converting to this audience. If you are only selling information as eBooks, for example, you may want to expand so that you are offering video courses or even coaching that you can provide one-on-one or in a group setting.
Another thing you have to consider is whether or not your pricing strategy is still on target with what your niche audience is willing to spend. The economy can fluctuate, and if we are currently in a state where many people are struggling, you may need to shift your price points down.
You also want to look at where your target audience is active going into 2024. They may have been very active on Facebook a year ago, but now you may see a significant boost going to another platform, whether it’s YouTube, Instagram, or even TikTok.
And don’t forget that your niche audience may have preferences when it comes to the media format they choose to absorb information through. You may find that you have to spend more time creating multimedia content because your audience has begun to look for different options.
Check Your Competitors And Prospective Collaborators
The third task you are going to want to immerse yourself in before the end of the year or going into the next one is to carefully study both your competitors and colleagues that can make good collaborations.
On the competitor side, this is something where they can serve as an enemy to your business as well as a friend. When you are both in the same niche, you have the opportunity to promote one another as affiliates, but at the same time, you are also competing for those dollars.
When studying competitors, you want to look at several things. The first is: What are they teaching? You don’t want to get left behind teaching the same old things if they are offering cutting-edge information to your target audience.
Another thing you want to look at is: What are they not doing? By knowing where the gaps are in their offerings, you can step up and serve the same target audience where they are failing to do so.
Take time to analyze their sales copy and their funnel’s price points, how they use email marketing to their benefit, what they post on social media, and even how they are doing with search engine optimization.
When you gather information on your competitors, your goal is always to sort through the results to see how you can take advantage of this data for your own benefit and that of your audience.
Sometimes, these same individuals will serve as potential collaborators or partners for your business. Other times, you’ll be seeking out people for collaborations who aren’t even direct competitors, but they can benefit you in other ways.
You want to spend a little time looking for the right people to begin networking with. While your first task was to weed out some of the wrong people in your circles, this one has you curating new ones to begin communicating with and brainstorming with on projects that can be mutually beneficial.
When you are analyzing people for possible connections, you want to look at several things. First and foremost, does their vision align with what you want to position yourself as when you are a brand that is serving your audience?
Secondly, you need to dig into their reputation to see if people view them in a positive manner before you reach out and connect with them. Not everyone will be a good fit for your business, so you want to start off with slow communications and build up gradually to something as you get a feel for whether or not you want to stay connected.
Canceling And Buying Tools For Their Business
The fourth task is something that many newbies need to learn from their more experienced counterparts. Newcomers often accumulate a massive amount of tools and subscription products that siphon off a lot of money from their businesses.
But seasoned online entrepreneurs conduct an analysis of how their money is being spent in their business and make adjustments that will help them retain more of their profits.
The first thing I do is go back and look at everything that is being spent on a recurring charge. For example, they may be paying for access to a keyword tool, a graphic design tool, an artificial intelligence (AI) tool, and more.
Anything that they have not been using regularly or that they have identified a better tool for, they will cancel. There’s no need to spend money on something that you rarely use or that you no longer use, but many people will forget that they have an ongoing subscription and continue to be charged for it, also because many tools silently renew without letting you know.
The next thing I do around this time of year is look for the tools that I want to use moving forward. Tools and subscription-based items are often evolving into something better, and new products arrive on the market that you need to take a look at.
There are many great deals to be had around Black Friday through the Christmas season, so it’s a great time to evaluate what you need to stop paying for and what you are willing to begin being charged for.
For example, maybe you were paying an ongoing monthly subscription to “Deposit Photos” for $39 per month. But you’re finding that you’re not able to use all of the available credits each month.
Although they may roll over, you have to keep paying for that monthly subscription in order to keep those rollover image credits. Around this time, you might discover a great deal through App Sumo, where you get 100 images for $39.
Because these images never expire, you won’t be in a rush to use them in a short period of time. You can cancel your monthly subscription and use your money more wisely in your business.
The only thing you need to watch out for is that you’re not buying things just because they sound good or everyone else is buying them. If you haven’t decided that they will have an immediate and powerful impact on your business, don’t spend the money.
Taking a Hard Look At How To Adjust Your Mindset
There’s another task that seasoned top marketers immerse themselves in, which many newbies ignore. That’s the task of adjusting their mindset. Just as you do some spring cleaning on your business, you have to get inside your mind and see what’s working for you and what’s working against you.
There are times in this business as a solo entrepreneur when you allow frustration and disappointments to take root and cause you to look at things in a negative light. You have to be able to shift your mind from one of self-doubt to one of self-confidence.
If you have developed an outlook where you dread working on your business, you have to find a way to cultivate a mindset where you once again have passion for what you are doing and how you are serving your audience.
Even top marketers sometimes develop a fear of failure. This can happen in any situation when sales are not rolling in as usual.
This is especially critical in a time where you are looking at expanding and elevating the business to new heights. You start viewing the risk that you are about to take as something more intimidating than it really is.
Another mindset problem you might have is a perfectionist attitude. If you are the type of person who doesn’t want to take action unless everything is in perfect order, you will delay your success because you are unable to achieve perfection.
Sometimes, you might even find that a trait that you once admired, such as a commitment to work, has spiraled out of control and led you to a place where you feel burned out and unenthusiastic about your work routine.
If you feel overworked, mentally or physically, you need to step back and evaluate how you can make changes in the coming year to eliminate this type of mindset that pushes you to a place that is not good for your health or your business.
Other mindset issues that you might have to adjust to as a solo entrepreneur include things like being willing to make changes in your business and delegating tasks to others so that you can free up time for yourself.
Planning For Growth Without Adding More Hours
Building on that last mindset issue, this is something you need to plan for as you grow your business to the next level. You want to expand, either by doing more of the same so that you can earn additional income or by expanding into other areas.
But what you don’t want to do is sacrifice your free time, health, and mental stability by overburdening yourself with a business that requires too much from you because you have branched out in so many different directions.
There are beneficial ways to grow your business that don’t include things that will not serve you well. As long as you are willing to eliminate the fat from your business and replace it with more effective systems for growth, you won’t have to worry that you’ll be making changes that do more harm than good.
There are different ways you can grow your business, but the first thing you have to do is decide which method is right for you. This may mean expanding your target audience, expanding your niche topic, expanding the types of business models you offer, etc.
It may just mean doing more of the same, and in that case you’re going to need to look at how you can boost your productivity without adding an endless amount of hours to your day.
You have to take a look at tools that can help you do things faster or more efficiently while maintaining the quality of your business. You can also look at services that you can invest in that can do the job on your behalf.
Sometimes growth will require you to build a team of professionals that can assist you in expanding your business so that you don’t have to pour your own hours into the project. This might mean hiring a virtual assistant to do all of the mundane or time-consuming tasks that you can easily hand off to them.
Or, you might be hiring freelance individuals with specific skills, such as ghostwriters or graphic designers. You may want to hire an affiliate manager who can network on your behalf and contact people to get them on board for your product launches.
There may be tools that you can use, such as Hootsuite, that will help you schedule all of your social media from one dashboard rather than requiring you to log into each individual platform and manage your social media marketing in a more time-consuming way.
Whenever you are making plans for expansion in your business, don’t just look at the profit potential that you stand to gain from adding something. Instead, look at what you’ll be giving up to get there.
How much money will you need to invest in order to take on this type of expansion? How many hours is it going to take for you to implement a system that helps you grow your business?
Don’t make a firm decision to go with any type of growth until you know how you can manage it in a way that won’t require you to sacrifice time or too much money. Once you have a solution to that, then you can move forward.
Identifying What They Need to Learn in Order to Be a Top Leader In Their Niche
And lastly, one of the top tasks that I’m engaged in at this time as we move into the New Year is a focus on continuing education. Top marketers are always learning something new.
It’s not even that they feel forced to do so, but they thrive on learning new things and being able to dominate over their competitors because they are willing to go the extra mile and immerse themselves in the learning process.
There are different things you may need to learn right now as you jump into the next 12 months. For example, with my blog, I need to stay on top of search engines because it is continually evolving, and your website can be buried or rise to the top of the search engine results pages, depending on how much you are willing to learn about Google’s updates and changes.
There may be things you need to learn about new tools that have come into the marketplace. For example, if you’re using artificial intelligence tools, there may be new ones that are available to help you create videos or other types of products, and you need to spend some time learning how to do that effectively.
You also might need to learn more about your niche. There are some niches where information is constantly changing. Even if you are in something such as the dating niche, you can look at the news and see that there are frequent changes and trends taking place in how people make connections and develop relationships.
But some niches, such as health or weight loss, typically have frequent evolutions of scientific information being released that can help your audience or trends that are taking place that people are adopting based on others’ success.
You also have to look at learning more about how outside factors can affect your niche audience. An example of this might be how the current economy being terrible can affect the make money online niche, either causing people to focus on free tools and methods or simply the fact that it’s bringing more people on board to try to supplement their meager income.
The one thing you don’t want to do, whether you are new or experienced in Internet marketing, is to sit back and rest on your laurels as the competition adopts these seven strategic habits, because then you’ll see your income grow stagnant when instead, it could be growing by leaps and bounds.