One of the biggest online marketing mistakes that I see more than anything else is the deadly practice of digital sharecropping. Building your business on a digital platform you don’t own or control (like MySpace, Google+, LinkedIn, Facebook, or Twitter).
Often I’m reminded of this story about a local bookstore that did everything right, and they always had plenty of customers. But they still closed their doors. They closed the store because they were leasing their big, comfortable building … and when that lease ran out, their landlord doubled the rent. Literally overnight, their business model quit working.
And this my friends is exactly what you risk every day when you make your business completely dependent on another company.
It might be MySpace. It might be Facebook. It might be eBay. It might be Google.
So, how do you avoid this?
In a recent post I talked about developing a stage. A stage is a digital property you own and control. It is where your loyal listeners, fans, and readers come together. It can be as simple as a podcast, newsletter, forum, blog or as complex as a self-hosted community. No matter what it is, it’s where you direct all internet traffic.
Because this is the place where you can best sell your ideas, services or products. You control the microphone and determine who has backstage access.
The best way to predict your future is to create it!