Come on Dave… 12 Things Internet Marketers Should NOT Do Everyday
March 10, 2009
From what I know via a small handful of online interactions as well as watching a few videos and reading a bit about him over the years, Dave Snyder strikes me as a smart guy and a pretty darn good internet marketer. Great. Yay. But I’m writing this blog post b/c I want to be a contrarian. I disagree with about 75% of his recent post – 12 Things Internet Marketers Should Do Everyday, but hell let’s just say I disagree 100%. That’s more fun.
Why? Well I’ll blame Dave for my frustration with a viewpoint that goes much beyond him. Everybody is recommending that we do more. Doing more is not the answer. Many of us need to do less. I’ve been trying to catch up the past couple of weeks and have been working 16+ hour days. Do more you say? Not a practical recommendation. That’s too easy. Of course we should always check our analytics more often and send thank you emails more often and do a million other things more often. That’s not improving efficiency, its just adding to the workload. The problem is that time is finite. There is a concept called opportunity cost. Its real. Its not pretend.
Its not that these are bad ideas. Its that there is limited time, and you could easily spend 4+ hours doing just this stuff. That’s too long. Do something else. Do some work for goodness sake, and stop playing. Best advice? DIFN.
1. Check your damn analytics –
Eh, maybe if you spend 2 minutes to do this you can check it every day, but I would say 80% of the people I’ve supervised in internet marketing roles had the reverse problem here. They checked their analytics frequently but only looked at the surface numbers. I think you are better served to check your analytics once a week and spend that much more time diving into it.
2. Update your Facebook presence –
Are you serious? Dude, I do the same damn thing every day. Who wants to read “Jon is at work again” on Thursday as a new update, after Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday each said the same thing. Again, I think less is more. Update it whenever you have something interesting to share. For me, that’s like 2-3 times per month, tops. Yeah, sad. If you do different, interesting things several times a day than go for it. Please don’t update your status though to let me know you are taking out the trash or buying ketchup at the grocery store. Nobody cares. At all.
3. Monitor your online reputation –
Again, every day? If you are a celebrity or you make your living off of speaking engagements or media exposure than this might make sense. Shoot, setting up a Google Alert might just do the trick for you. Chances are though if you are one of those people you have a personal assistant or something that should be doing this for you.
4. Read at least one Internet Marketing blog post –
If you are a newbie this is great advice. If you’ve been doing this for a while than I think you’ll probably learn more by doing and experimenting than you will reading babble. Many bloggers write to attract an audience. Its sort of like the news. They aren’t really lying, but they are presenting what they think will sell better. Many SEO bloggers also make their living blogging, speaking, etc. and not really doing. I’m not saying “all” here or even “most”, but “many”. So be careful.
5. Try to utilize a new tool each day –
Okay sure this is fine. Should help productivity.
6. Hit StumbleUpon once a day and just Stumble –
7. Utilize Twitter –
I do this, but I shouldn’t. I go back and forth. If you have fantastic discipline and you can really limit this to 5 minutes a day than proceed, by all means. Just be careful as its easy to spend 2 hours on Twitter and while you might have a fun time and find lots of interesting stuff, you might not really have accomplished 2 hours worth of value creation.
8. Take an hour and do something that isn’t Internet related –
An hour? I should take 1 hour and spend time with my family, and then work all other remaining non-sleep hours? That’s weak. Again, you can call me hypocrite here and probably be right, but at least my head is in the right place even if my actions sometimes take a little while to catch up. If I reduce the amount of time I spend doing these 12 things and elminate many of them I should have several hours to spend with my family each day. That makes for a more well-rounded person. I don’t just want to be the best internet marketer I can be, I want to be the best person I can be. Part of that is being a husband, father, friend, etc. I think that deserves more than 1 hour per day, given how much time gets allocated for work.
9. Check your competitors out –
Again, I don’t think this is necessary every day. Is it important to monitor competition? Sure. Do you need to do it every day? Probably not. Same argument as item #1 about analytics. Do it less frequently but go deeper.
10. Thank print media for being stubborn –
Okay sure. That takes 3 seconds. “Thank you print media for being stubborn”. Okay done.
11. Check out IM Broadcast for the latest in Internet Marketing video – Ok, that’s a shameless plug, but if you know me, you know I’m a whore.
Whore. Instead of doing that you should spend 30 minutes of your time each day linking to my sites with my desired anchor text.
12. Thank God, Allah or whomever that you get paid to play on the Internet.
Couldn’t agree more here. When I was an adolescent I worked summers helping my uncles in construction. As the peon, you move a pile of cinder blocks from point A to point B… then back to point A. There is nothing worse in this world than doing that in 100 degree heat. That was work. Every job I’ve had since then has been cake. The fact that it pays much better is just a nice bonus. We are indeed very blessed.
Now this all said, I’m a total hypocrite. Look at me writing a blog post when I have a mile-long to do list this morning. First thing I did when I turned on my computer was check email and Twitter, and then watched a Youtube video. I’ve wasted about 30 minutes this morning – and while I had a little fun watching the video, etc. – I’d rather have that 30 minutes back and either have gotten 30 minutes of work done, or had 30 more minutes to play with kid.
Okay so its easy to say something is wrong. Bad idea. So what’s the solution? I’ll give you just 1. That’s all you need. In case you missed it up about, identify the key activities associated with acheiving your goals and reaching your desired outcomes. Do them. Do them first. Do them now. Stop reading this blog post and get to work. Specifically eliminate or proactively subbordinate everything else. Those are distractions.
Prioritization and discipline. I’m working on both. Wish me luck. 🙂