When I started out internet marketing, over ten years ago now, cheap or free internet marketing tools and techniques. My reasoning was simple, I couldn’t afford to pay for something expensive as I wasn’t making money. And I had no idea how I would do either.
This mindset leads to two scenarios. First, the idea that you don’t make the money and can’t pay for it leads to a scarcety mindset – in other words, that you are, and always will be poor. That isn’t good, as you tend to create that reality by thinking those thoughts all the time. The alternative to that is, I don’t have to money, so I need to find a way to pay for it, so I can keep going with my business.
I have to admit, for a long time, I was looking for cheap or free internet marketing tools and techniques, and I was looking for a lot of “shiny objects” as well. This meant that whilst the cost wouldn’t be quite as much as paying for the tools that I needed, it kept my wheels spinning. Every part of success seemed completely out of reach. In reality it probably was at that time.
What Happens if you don’t use paid or free internet marketing tools?
I have a technical background, when I first started out, I used to hand-code funnels. At that time, you could get templates, but you had to either be technical, or get someone in who was. I spent many hours getting sales funnels looking and working right. Cool. I was saving money though. There wasn’t much choice back then, the tools were quite simplistic. I still spent far too much time fiddling with the technical side of the sales funnel, rather than the marketing side. And that is also another problem.
If a sales funnel does not work, that isn’t good. If on the other hand, it isn’t perfect, but mostly works, then like me, you’d be missing the whole point of the sales funnel. Marketing. Which leads to sales. You see where I am going here?
Eventually, I got it
After many years of having a bruised forehead, from the insanity for performing the same tricks like a crazed hamster on its wheel, finally I purchased tools that sounded good. I think the first one was optimizepress, it was a very early version I think, and from memory, I wasn’t convinced. But it definitely did help, even if it was a little frustrating. The big thing is, it changed my mindset from that of a worker to that of a business owner.
As time went on I found more and more important tools that I needed to use to be effective. And that is the key, effectiveness vs cost.
If it takes you 2 weeks to put together a sales funnel hand coding, it won’t cost you a thing. If you value your time at lets say:
$20 per hour, and 2 weeks is 2 weeks * 5 days * 6 hours in a day (assuming you’re not 100% productive all day) = 60 hours * $20 per hour = $1200 to create.
If you have a tool, and it meant that it would take 3 days to create a funnel, that’s 3 days * 6 hours = 18 hours * $20 per hour = $360.
Now, for that tool to be effective for you JUST OVER THAT TIME PERIOD, it would need to cost $1200 – $360 = $840.
So given that example, if you could get a tool that allowed the 3 days scenario, and it cost less than $840, then it would have returned value, and anything from there on is profit.
The true value of your time. Is free really free?
Understand that valuing your time, and getting paid are two different things. When you start our it needs to be hypothetical to allow you to make decisions like a business owner. I understand if you don’t have a job, you will have no money to pay for anything. But then, coming back to my original statement, that you need to try to find a way to pay for it. So if you could find a way, by washing people’s cars, or providing some other service, that would allow you to then have the money to buy the tools you need. This will accelerate your progress.
As an example, as I said, I started out by hand coding funnels, which in the early days was the only option. That might have taken me a week to put together the first time, then slightly less for subsequent copies. I also made mistakes there, so lost subscribers as a result. I now have tools that would allow me to easily create a full funnel in 1 day. Aside from the time savings, and being able to concentrate on the marketing, it also allows me to be able to get in front of opportunities. Offers that look worthwhile to promote.
What I found was that I got to do better testing that everything was put together properly, so I didn’t miss subscribers, or sales because of errors in the funnel. And I could also put together a lot more funnels. Then sending traffic would allow me to find which funnel was best converting. The alternative thinking back, was for it to cost me nothing, and I’d spend all the time trying to get everything right, instead of more quickly getting sales.
There is a place for free stuff, but only if it makes sense. You can get free traffic, but you will be putting a lot more of your own time. And you may miss opportunities where you can generate easy money through affiliate marketing for example.
I’m not saying that free internet marketing tools are inherently bad. There are a small number of tools that work well. I have used many free internet marketing tools that have a very limited set of functionality but worked well at the time that I used them. One thing I have since found although is that the extra features often accelerated my progress. The reason most free internet marketing tools vendors have free versions, is so that you use them, realise that there are features that would be useful, and then pay for the full version.
With that in mind, you should find the tools that best suits your needs longer term particularly if you will quickly outgrow the free version. If you are stuck with tools that are not fit for your purposes, then seeking out free internet marketing tools would then be detrimental to the growth of your business. The opposite of what you had intended.
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