Facebook: The dark night

My nephew’s goal is to make a full-time living as a social media influencer.  Some of his favorite Internet personalities make tens of thousands each month and he wants his share of the pie. 

I can’t blame him.  

He gets frustrated though because it’s taking him much longer than he thought it would.  It reminded me of some advice I received years ago.  It went something like this…

When it comes to getting your biz going it will usually take three times as long and cost twice as much as you think it will.  

No truer words have ever been spoken for young entrepreneurs.  There’s exceptions to the rule but better to think that way than think you’ll be the next Zuckerberg rich at age 23.

I harp on my nephew about one other thing.  And it’s the most important…

Build a list of customers and prospects.  It could just be their name and email address but having a list that YOU own can save your bacon. 

Pushing people off social networks to your website sounds easy but it’s not.  Why?  Because of Network Effect.  Network effect is when the number of people improve the value of the product or service. 

Take Uber for example.  Uber is #1 in ride share service which mean they attracts more drivers.  This lowers the wait time, which attracts more riders, which attracts more drivers, which lowers the wait time…etc.

It’s a constant circle that’s extremely hard to break.  That’s why you could spend billions and never take over Uber’s place as #1.  

The same is true with Google, Ebay, or Apple.  

It’d be like trying to stop a t-rex from charging at you with a fly-swatter.  You can’t break the momentum.

By having your own list you can rely on your direct marketing skills and NOT “the network”. 

That way when Facebook goes dark, or they change their rules or terms and conditions you can bounce back and pivot way faster than the poor sap that thought he didn’t need to build a list.

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