The War On Internet Marketing – Panda Update and Other Scary Stuff

google panda update The war is over and you lost.
Google Panda Update, Adwords Slap / Ban, Youtube Accounts Killed, Amazon Kindle Restrictions, Nexus Tax, Plimus Bans IM Products and More…

It’s A War On Internet Marketing!

Actually, many would say it is a long overdue correction. To eliminate the scummy, make money overnight and push button millionaire programs. What has happened in the process is that some legitimate online businesses have been hurt. Unfortunately its part of the risk you take when “riding the line”. The days of overnight internet millions may be coming to an end…

But What Can You Do About It?

Who cares. If your an offline marketing consultant then you wont be impacted by these radical changes. Offline IS and always WILL be an evergreen opportunity for those who are committed to helping small businesses. Years ago when you wanted to start a business your first order of operation was to get a logo and business cards, maybe incorporate.

Not Anymore…

When local businesses are in start-up mode they also want “social media” help. And this is the new business requirement that didn’t exist in the minds of a new business just 5 years ago. To clarify, when businesses talk “social media”, they are actually thinking about online advertising or getting new customers. In my experience they tend to blend websites, facebook and client acquisition and file it all under the topic of social media.

But What About Google?

Certainly we need to make sure that our clients are receiving the proper exposure from the largest search engine but it is NOT the end-all be-all for local businesses. This is something my partner and fellow offline consultant Jack Mize is rather vocal about. Keep in mind that Facebook and Mobile have both recently emerged as serious marketing tools for local brick and mortar businesses. Besides that….

Google Has It’s Own Troubles…

I guess the FTC is chasing after Google . Apparently they aren’t playing fairly with others and it has certain organization like Yelp and Expedia rather upset. Curious how this will actually work out considering the power, wealth and reach that Google has. It is really hard to comprehend when you think about it.

So Whats My Point?

I will summarize in bullet points. I know you like “them-there bullet points..”

  • Traditional Internet Marketing (IM) / Biz-Op Is Being Targeted
  • Offline Will Live Forever As Businesses Realize The Value And Seek Your Help
  • Google Is Not The Only Solution, It is One Of Many
  • Google Has It’s Own Issues, With The FTC and Challengers Like Facebook

Some Closing Thoughts

Avoid the make-money overnight IM and MLM world if at all possible. Build real equity in yourself (skills) and your business (get customers). Because setting up 1,000 autoblogs that make $1 a day each just won’t work. Remember, people and money follow value. There is no real value in autoblogs, not to Google, the visitor or You.

If you really want to profit from all this online madness just focus on providing value. Real solutions, real advice and avoid the “quick buck”.  I would love to hear your thoughts on the subject. Leave a comment below and I will send a FREE Street Fighter T-Shirt to the best one (totally subjective of course).

 

 

 

 

P.S. – In case your wondering… I still think Local Business Marketing rocks and yes, I still help local businesses in my area. You should too, they need it.

26 thoughts on “The War On Internet Marketing – Panda Update and Other Scary Stuff

  1. Pankaj

    i think the competition is tremendous now and with facebook growing at a jaw dropping rate google needs to make some strict rules,policies to make its way back…
    However if we follow their TOS n legal issues i don’t thnk it will harder for us to continue business with google!!!

    i guess GOOGLE doin such bans,updates and other such things to show its competitors who’s the big daddy out there~!!!! 😀

  2. Troy @ DigitalAuthority.com

    I’ve been b1tch slapped by Google more times than I can count – and I hate them every time they do it (one day I’ll exact my revenge).

    But… you are so correct Robert… the IM ‘make money with a blog and a click’ BS was, and is, getting completely out of control.

    …I guess Panda’s do eat meat after all… fresh ‘something for nothing’ IM’s meat. The only question that remains is… do they want fries with that?

  3. Marisa Wright

    You are so right about a correction being overdue.

    If you’d told me, three years ago, that I would even consider the possibility of making money by writing, I would’ve laughed at you. Now I write on rev-share sites and have my own websites, which don’t earn a lot but they are earning.

    I’m of an older generation where only the best writers had a hope of making a living as journalists, novelists, copywriters etc. The internet opened up the floodgates so anyone could write any kind of [email protected] and be successful – nothing to do with their ability as a writer or subject matter expert, and all about their ability to play the Google game. That was always wrong and I’d be delighted if balance was restored.

    However so far, I’m not seeing much sign of that. The game-players are still managing to rank high, while many honest website owners with genuine content have suffered. I’m not sure all that much has really changed yet.

  4. Steve Greenwood

    *Lordy,I love that line from ‘Cool-Hand Luke’. Hmmm…That (workinonit.com) may work, unless Kevin Ham has snatched it up ;^). What’s Going On Here?? Are you all saying that my entire collection of Magic Scripts, Binders full of Numbered & Limited-Edition DVDs & CDs that have Proven Programs(I saw the screenshots)that make mega$$$$ on auto-pilot, night after night..this is what??? I’ve gladly invested Tens-of- Thousands, spent countless hours diligently searching for The Best of the Bright ‘n’ Shinies. Hellfire, all the binders still have the shrink-wrap on them, and most all the DLs are still zipped! And you all are telling me this is going away?? WTF am I supposed to do now??? BTW Robert, Thank you! Keep up the good work, we sincerely appreciate it. Steve

  5. Dorothy Allen

    Google is neither friend nor foe. It is a for-profit business. As such, the decisions made by those mysterious strangers behind closed doors will always be ones that, first of all, benefit Google.

    We have to make those same decision from time to time about our own smaller-than-Google businesses and in doing so, some people benefit while others don’t, but it is always the welfare of the business that counts first and foremost.

    My particular hangup about Google is the inability to communicate with the people who are affecting my work and thus my life. When a perfectly good site is ranking high one day and disappearing completely the next day, a quick conversation with someone ‘in control’ would be very nice.

    Thanks to Robert and Jack who continue to discover, encourage and teach the rest of us.
    Nothing stays the same. We’re all in for some revolutionary changes in marketing of which local and mobile are only a small part. It’s going to be interesting to say the least.

  6. Brian

    Robert,

    Longtime no talk. I’m happy to finally tell you I am having good success with my local business marketing. I think we all know that it’s imperative to provide quality if you plan on being in business online or offline. There will always be the folks who want to cut corners and “try” to get something for free. That’s just not the way it works no matter how hard one tries. Provide a great service and you will never have to worry about finding quality clients!

    Brian from Cali

  7. Steve

    Manipulation and a blatant disregard for customer/client value is the key problem.

    It’s become mind-boggling bad in the Online Guru space – just this week I’ve been hit up for multiple products who start by lying or simply admit that they are “gaming” the system. How else do explain the 1-click phenomenons (that aren’t) and the “1000 books on kindle in 2 hours” promotions.

    What has happened to quality and accountability?

    Frankly, a lot of the problem lies with us – the consumers of these products. If we allow people to get away with providing low-value products and continue to shell out our cash on over-hyped promises for $37 (and 18 upsells), then the bottom-feeders will continue to exploit the market. We heave to demand more from the product producers and the affiliates who promote the junk without regard to the actual value of the product.

    Unfortunately, I’m seeing this same poison starting to leak into the offline and consulting space. It is being infected with the same empty promises and quick buck mentality that has plagued the MLM and online marketing arenas.

    Again, it’s incumbent upon each of us to become more knowledgeable in our craft and to make sure that we over-deliver on our promises. We must take pride in our expertise and treat our craft with the respect that it deserves. In doing so, we can demand more money and provide better results. While I hate the idea that business owners are being bombarded by garbage offers – I can revel in the fact that I can absolutely produce what I promise and that I actually care about my client and my reputation.

    No matter how many consultants enter the market, you can be sure that there will always be room for more good ones.

  8. Bryan @ Easy WP SEO Plugin

    Ken above nails it. Providing value is now paramount. While I’ve never promoted the “get rich quick” garbage and stayed with quality products I genuinely believe will help people, I am seeing the need to diversify a bit more. I have offline plans on the back burner, and it’s time to make that more of a priority.

  9. Ron Thomson

    Hi

    I am inclined to agree that is time that organizations such as plimus and clickbank took control of products they were collecting money for.

    Some eight years ago I lost a lot of money when 2Checkout suddenly changed their stance on a product I had developed. They having initially agreed my package was fully acceptable two years later changed their view and said I was selling real estate which was not permitted as they did not have a licence.

    The reality was far from their assumption as I was only including one square foot of land in a much bigger novelty package. The rest of the package all fitted into large envelopes which were sent by airmail. Even our countries national government concluded that amount of area could not be regarded as selling real estate. The price being charged for the whole package (under $50) would not have covered the cost of picking up a telephone for a consultation with a realtor so how could any one think they were buying land as an investment.

    So having your own product is not always cut and dry either. I have sold a number of products as an affiliate and I think in 99% of cases been treated fairly by the vendor. I did have an occasion when a friend bought through my link but the vendor said it had been refunded. My friend thought the product was fantastic and was shocked to hear that he had asked for a refund as he had not either received any monies or requested any refund. Needless to say I stopped recommending that vendor very quickly.

    I am another person fed up of receiving emails from dozens of people who have copied wholesale an email from another “guru” who they say is a very close friend. How many CLOSE friends can you really have (outside of facebook of course)?

    Whenever I get a few emails that look the same in my email box all proclaiming that the latest software product or ebook is perfect for me I immediately unsubscribe to ALL their lists. If a marketer is not capable of honestly reviewing a product and writing their own unique review then I don’t want to receive emails from them.

    I do some advertising of products but apart from amazon products which I would have no personal use for I have brought every one in advance and given personal views on what I thought. I have never relied on a review provided by the vendor. (Did you know they could be a little biased in their viewpoint so may overlook some important failings?)

    I have to admit most of the sales emails I receive now are about forex or IM products and I have got past the stage of believing their claims now. However lately I have seen a drastic increase in emails about my need to learn the latest techniques to sell to local business owners as well.

    Maybe this streetfighter should have stopped publicizing the success he was having (after I signed up of course). He has indirectly been responsible for a lot of bandwagons. Each new guru taking similar techniques but crossing the “t”s and dotting the “i”s in a different way to become a revolutionary exciting new product about to turn the world upside down.

    For the sake of full disclosure I am required to say that streetfighter is a close personal friend of mine. We first and last spoke on the telephone to each other for a full 1/2 hour. That was about eighteen months ago and although we have not kept in close touch except through me being on his mailing list we remain close bosom friends and inseparable whenever we get together. Incidentally Robert I take a large size t-shirt.

    To sum it up I have a number of different streams of income making money from local businesses, from selling amazon products and some of my own products and training services. I solidly believe that we can not afford to put all our eggs in one basket who knows what federal agency is going to target next.

    Ron

  10. Kenny

    Robert youre right offline will never die and it doesnt matter what google or Facebook or anyone does you just have to keep pushing. Thanks to you and Jack Mize i finally am starting to see money out of my offline business it hasnt been easy and its a daily grind and its WORK but you guys advice and insights Do Work … Robert said it best invest in your skills, work hard and help small business thats is key to success! btw id love a streetfighter tee cause im living proof it works!

  11. Seb

    Lets seperate the men from the boys and real oppertunities from rip offs.
    True marketers will adapt and still increase.
    There are no get rich schemes and no shortcuts.
    Work hard, stay focused and you will get to the pot of gold.
    On that note im gettin back to work

  12. SEOGuy

    I dunno… 3rd month into my autoblog launch and receiving near 300 visitors daily with resulting profits. The key is finding the right system to work with as well as remembering to contribute quality content together with automation.

    It really doesn’t matter what you do, if you do it in a scammy way you will be in bad shape. If you don’t you won’t.

  13. Ken

    Hey Robert, what do you think the cost of the learning curve is for the average newbie, just “out of the box”, I mean just starting out (Freudian slip)? I’m so tired of seeing the “biz in a box” crap, that are obviously scams, that newbs spend plenty on before realizing they’ve been taken. I have a friend that spent close to 20K in the MLM arena before his marriage fell apart and he realized there was NO magic button (for those that say MLM is better than IM … that’s only true for the “Founders” of those companies). Anyway, it’s a black eye to all of us that are doing it right and it just makes it that much harder to help the folks that really need it.

    If Google’s trying to clean house of the crap, more power to them, but I’ll believe it when I see it. My wife was spammed on Facebook today with the promise of 8K a month payout, working from home. The ad was supposedly “liked” over a half million times. This stuff can’t be eliminated fast enough for me.

    Just the other day I read an interesting article where the author suggested that chasing money on the internet is like chasing sweat. Like money, sweat is a by-product of an activity, like exercise. The activity that allows us to make money is “the act” of providing value.

    My experience with offline marketing has shown me that you have to approach business owners that have already gotten their feet wet. Business owners unfamiliar with having an online presence can be a challenge if you aren’t prepared to walk them through all the value that you can provide and the benefits they will derive. In my opinion offline business owners that have tried online marketing and failed miserably have a better understanding of what they need.

    I was not aware that the FTC was per-suing Google, but that has to be like going after a shark in a small boat … I hope they know what to do with them IF they catch them.

    I know that Bing and Yahoo are “alternatives”, but their percentage of the market, as it exists, is so miniscule that I’m hesitant to go to the trouble to try to learn how to use them effectively. I’m not saying I won’t, especially if the treatment by Google continues down the rough path they’re presently on. I’m not sure if Bing has finally broken out on their own or if their search results are still mirroring Google’s, as they did when they first burst onto the scene.

    I agree with you Robert, that Google isn’t the only option, but unless you have a tool or are developing one, to be able to use ALL of the other options, as easily as you can use Google now (even with the cow tailing that Google requires) Google is still the 2 ton elephant in the room and unless something crazy happens, it most likely will be here for quite some time.

    Really an excellent post & thought provoking! Thanks.

  14. Rick Henderson

    You make some good points. Anyone who has spent any time in IM or MLM knows it’s damn hard to attract a targeted, motivated audience with money to spend. Then you add in the “justifiable and much needed adjustments” by Google and others and the task becomes even more difficult.

    The biggest problem I see overall is what I call “Ad Blindness”. People are so inundated with advertising on a daily basis they’ve learned to block it out for the most part. People don’t want to be sold, they want to be informed and that severely narrows their focus. Consumers are much more sophisticated now and they have at their disposal myriad tools to get the information they’re looking for.

    Bottom line is that we’ve come full circle. The most effective selling is done one on one. It’s personal and immediate. Even if you’re on the other side of the world, with tools like Skype and screen sharing software you can have instant interaction with a prospect rather than being some unknown, faceless entity. People are far more comfortable with the former.

  15. Diana

    Robert,
    Thanks for sharing your thoughts on this…They are right on!

    The days of the “wild wild west” online are over…Ethics, integrity, and offering real value are the new “watch words” for anyone who is serious in business.

    I love working with local businesses and the sense that I truly care about their success is what draws them to me.

    Rock on…

  16. JoelinPDX

    Frankly, I hate to see stuff like this talked about openly. I wonder how many affiliate marketers, article marketeers, just general Internet marketers who are purveying the latest bright, shiny thing are going to read this and decide “offline marketing” is the place to be.

    The fact is, there’s lots of room in the consulting market but we don’t need the crappy competition ruining it for everyone by sending out their hypey, BS sales letters. Brick and mortar businesses will get wise to them quickly and it’ll just make it harder for legitimate offliners to peddle their wares.

    Robert, you know and I know, there’s a lot more to being an offliner than a passing knowledge of Internet marketing. You have to truly understand how Google Places — and the Bing and Yahoo counterparts — work. You have to understand what relationship marketing is all about. And moreover, you need to understand the ins and outs of running a small business. We don’t need a lot of fly by night IM shiny thing hype artists entering the offline consulting market.

  17. Ken from Advanced Market Training

    Google is not the enemy. It’s trying to bring value to its users, and its what we should be doing as well. So rather than looking for loopholes that get filled faster than they can get made, follow along with the progress. Stay honest, helpful, and gain the appreciation of those making searches. They’re your customers too!

    Forget the one click riches, they only worked for the originators anyway. Do the work, make sense, and contribute!

  18. Evelyn

    Serving local business and putting their interests first is not a fad. The skills, knowledge and abilities to serve this market best may change, but in the end it comes to providing value add for clients with the mindset of always taking care of the customer first.

    IM in my opinion tends to be more “faddish” (is that a word?), with lots of make fast money and push button solutions to riches. Whether internet marketing or any other business, these schemes come and go. What works today may not work tomorrow.

    Offline or local marketing looks for new ways to produce the same results – find and convert loyal customers for our local clients’ businesses. If Google can help – we use it. If not, we are not crippled without it. Like so many other giant organizations before it that was purely self-serving, they are probably their own worst enemy and will pay the price.

    Great post Robert!

  19. Richard

    I receive telephone calls from public via my local business consultancy website looking for a cosmetic surgeon, bankruptcy lawyer, accountants so yeah thanks MR GOOGLE. I am happy to direct these people to local businesses especially when I negotiate a fee for the privilege.

  20. Jeff Davis

    IMHO

    I agree that google is not the end all be all of internet marketing.

    I did not know the ftc is after google, but it’s interesting to see if they buy thier way out of trouble…

    Offline marketing doesn’t work in Nebraska, people are too stupid to take advantage of the internet…

    One person actually told me he doesn’t believe in cell phones…

    I’m finding the offline consulting thing very difficult…

    And Plimus sucks outright, so nobody cares if they banned IM anyway…

    buncha retards run that company…

    funny they are ok with forex robots which are an even bigger rip off than IM.

    I’ll stick with my blogs, at least they actually make money for me…

  21. Philip C.

    You hit the nail right on the head with this one Robert. Truth be told, it was a long time coming.

    Clickbank, the Warrior Forum, and several other venues are full of get-rich-quick-with-by-just-pushing-a-button type b.s.

    Personally, I steer clear of promoting any type of money-making stuff. I stick to products that help people solve a problem, and I am also starting to go into the service sector.

    If your service is good and customer service even better, you will be okay. I also think people need to start looking into business models that are not dependent on SEO and all the other stuff that goes along with it.

    People need to position themselves and their businesses to where they couldn’t care less what Google/Youtube and Ebay/Paypal do or are going to do.

    I just love it when my number one mentor of all time, the legendary J.F. (Jim) Straw says “if the internet were to die tomorrow, I would still make money, I was a multimillionaire way before most of today’s gurus were even born.”

    Great post Robert, this one is definitely being saved.

  22. Leigha Baer @Charleston Mobile Marketing

    I love this piece! You hit the nail on the head with each of these points. Even the much loved bullet points. lol It’s looking crazy out there right now in the IM world and I agree, so many times I’ve thought that the passive affiliate models seemed so much better however here I sit safely watching it all while continuing to help the small businesses in my own area. Win-Win if you ask me. All the best Robert!

    1. rstanley

      @Leigha, I know! I really would like to sit at home and collect $10,000 adsense checks. And I know guys the did at one point but they don’t anymore.

  23. Steven Cohen

    I honestly believe that if you truly want to help your customer, that’s all that counts whether it’s offline or online. When you want to help someone, they know. When you don’t, they know. That’s my 2 cents worth.

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