The year is 2004. Google’s IPO Raises $1.67 Billion, Janet Jackson exposes her breast during the halftime super bowl show, and Lance Armstrong wins the sixth of his drug-fuelled Tour De France.
When factory workers pack that next box, press the machine button or office workers click their mouse; unless you do something you love, it can often feel like time is standing still.
But when it comes to remembering these historical events from just twelve years ago, you realise how quickly time marches on.
In 2004 PPC bidding was still in its infancy and Google beat the shit out of the quirky Overture interface.
You could still bid 0.10p on the content network for reasonably performing property keywords, and I know that because it was the year I became Internet Marketing Manager for Property Mentor.
When I joined that company in June 2004, all we had was a flaky net objects fusion website, which was a poor man's Dreamweaver at the time and no search engine rankings at all with all leads generated by paid search.
There was a point after about ten months in my first year where I began to think that I might get the sack because although I was continually adding backlinks, the lowly ranking refused to move north. It was starting to look like a futile exercise in SEO.
In those days though, Links were the be and end-all of search engine optimisation and came way before content as a ranking signal.
Then one day, I remember checking the rankings and seeing the Property Mentor site high up on the first page.
Was this a mirage? A caching issue? Could this be for real?
All of a sudden traffic came pouring into the website, and the company never looked back.
Even today long since I have done any SEO work for this company, the rankings still hold up.
While continuous Google updates have reduced the traffic, it still gets a reasonable amount of organic visitors.
Doing The Work Is A Small Part Of The Internet Marketing Solution.
Doing the work consistently is what it takes to succeed.
Most people give up before they hit the three-month mark. The graveyard for WordPress blogs fills the nether regions of Googles search engine results.
Here is a famous quote by businessman Ross Perot:
"Most people give up just when they're about to achieve success. They quit on the one yard line. They give up at the last minute of the game one foot from a winning touchdown."
A small but consistent application of effort over an extended time will yield results far greater than the effort required.
Drip, drip, drip. It doesn't matter whether you add a new piece of content every day or every week. Eventually, Google will take notice.
The more you add, the quicker the magic happens, but generally, you can expect to wait around six months before you get any recognition for your effort.
Consistency Is The Driving Force That Breaks Down Barriers
Have you ever had a fantastic idea and started work on an affiliate marketing project in a flurry of activity, never to get as far as finishing the website design or the work to start petering out over the next few weeks or months?
Projects often get started in a whirlwind of excitement and an avalanche of working hours but after the initial excitement fades away in sets the stark reality. To be able to make headway, you need to apply yourself consistently to the plan.
When you look at people who are successful, you will find that they aren't the people who are motivated, but have consistency in their motivation.
Trying to work on too many ideas at the same time is something that I've been guilty of in the past, and it always ends up with little achievement.
Having great ideas is nice to have in your skill-set, but if you never act on those ideas or see them through to fruition, then they can be more of a hindrance than an ally.
Sometimes you need to give up on a project because you realise that it's never going to be viable.
That's OK, that is part of the learning experience, and the quicker you learn to let go of stuff that isn't going to make a return, the better.
Most of the time, the only way to find out that something doesn't work is to do the spadework in the first place.
More often than not though it isn't the idea that is wrong, It is the direction that it is heading in, and simple tweaks can make it work properly. But you have to be in it to win it.
Being focused on a single project combined with a consistent application over a sustained period is the way to get results.
Let's Take Blogging As An Example
There are thousands of blogs started every day, but very few will get noticed.
The reason for that is because blogs are elementary to start. They require a minimal investment, just some hosting space, a Wordpress theme and you are good to go; nothing stands between you and the Nobel peace prize!
Having the idea and setting up a blog is the most straightforward part of making it. The hard part is writing the stuff that will interest people and then adding your posts consistently and sticking to a regular publishing schedule to yield results.
And that means adding two or three posts every week, for several years, for years to come.
That is the reality and the consistency required to make it successful.
Blogs are one of the harder business plans to bring to fruition because of the amount of creativity and time that they require to create; they are simple to set up but difficult to execute correctly.
Consistently working on your project takes discipline and requires that you get into the habit of working at it regularly.
It doesn't matter what the hours are. It just matters that you schedule the time and consistently work at it.