Earning a Living – Earning Income “On The Road”
Part III of a 3 part series dedicated to Earning Income “On The Road” from your RV. Click HERE for Part 1.
Let’s start with some food for thought in the video below – some of which is very direct and hard hitting, then commentary follows…
As you have seen in my prior posts, when living and traveling in a RV, there are many strategies and approaches you can use to earn income (and cut costs.) Naturally, a strategy that involves residual and leveraged income is very appealing to many – and as I point out in the video above, is fraught with pitfalls.
Let’s address marketing online first
The entire key to success when marketing online is to first have a worthwhile and competitive product or service to offer and then to get YOUR website noticed among the millions, billions or TRILLIONS of websites that offer similar (or the very same thing) with a message that moves people to purchase your widget.
Success in this area requires an understanding of how to construct a website, proper selection and use of keywords on your website, an understanding of how people will find your website (know that 70+% of all searches are done through Google) and once they find your website as noted earlier, is your presentation and offer compelling enough to get someone to part with their hard earned cash?
My goal this winter is to put a course together that addresses the process I use when marketing a business or product online. I have done this with good success on several occasions and believe I understand the process that must be followed to maximize the likelihood of success. I welcome your feedback below if providing a course of this nature is of interest to you.
Work from “Home” – pre-built businesses
Oh boy, here we go… Otherwise known as “network marketing”, “direct sales”, or “multi-level marketing”. While there is nothing wrong in theory with the concept of “the pyramid” in and of itself, as they say “the devil is in the details.”
Allow me to start here – I have extensive experience and background in the “home based business” world. I have had my share of success – and my challenges. When you read the fine print from many (most) of these companies and they show you (by law) the average earnings of an “independent representative”. You will find the average earnings are minimal – truly minimal. This fact supports another statement I’ve made, namely that 98-99% of those who “try” a MLM, fail at it. And, yes, I know each person you speak with will tell you they are “the exception!”
As I see it, there are two reasons failure is almost guaranteed before the “independent representative” begins to build “their business.” These two reasons are based upon sound business practices that every business owner and entrepreneur has to evaluate BEFORE committing time and money to marketing anything.
- Is there are market for this “widget”?
- Am I able to sell this widget at a competitive price?
Instead, most folks are “attracted” to home based businesses on the basis of emotional presentations designed to promote the dream of becoming financially independent as they build their “empire” upon leveraged and residual income.
To illustrate the importance of the two key questions above, and stepping out of the ‘home based business’ model for a moment, consider a buyer who works for Macy’s in Men’s suits. This buyer is visiting factories in the Far East and is deciding which suits to offer for sale in Macy’s stores this fall. As they inspect potential merchandise to offer, you can be sure they have these two questions in mind – AND – they know both who their competition is (online AND offline) and what they charge for similar merchandise.
In my experience working with people in “MLM’s”, very few ask these questions, let alone those that I raise in my video where I ask does the “widget” stand on its own or is it supported by those who “join” (as an independent representative) hoping to get rich by Saturday? AND for those who choose to market online, do they have a coherent strategy to attract buyers who may then choose to represent the “widget” as an independent representative, because they like it so much.
These are the hard questions to ask – especially in light of the slick marketing materials and sketchy (at best) endorsements of products in much of this industry – especially those companies found in the “health and wellness” sector, which represents 90% or so of all “home based business” companies.
In the interest of full disclosure, I am and have been involved with a home based business for several years now. As I stated in my video, it does meet my two primary criteria – 1) The product stands on its own and there is a legitimate customer base (as a salesman of RV’s, I use it to communicate with my clients in a meaningful way) and 2) The company is actually the low price leader of their industry, handily beating their competition both online and offline.
Note: I hesitated to put this in as my goal here is NOT to actively promote “what I do”, but as I know it will be a question for some, I offer the link in the following sentence to fully disclose my involvement in the MLM industry. Send Out Cards (click to learn more) passed my first two personal (and business) filters as it DOES offer a viable product that does what it purports to do – and – it does it at a price that beats its competition.
Recall another great concern of mine – especially in the health and wellness arena is the products make claims that simply can not be scientifically substantiated. This is why when presented with “opportunities”, if it relates to a “lotion, potion, or pill”, count me out!
Again, my goal here is NOT to promote what I do on a very part time basis to generate some additional income. It is to address the larger issue at hand – how is your time best spent? For me, RV sales is as much an “avocation” as a vocation as I enjoy “talking RV’ing” with my clients; and in the winter, again, I have combined two avocations – skiing and teaching with a “business” (ski instructing) which serves to generate some income in the winter and perhaps even more importantly – keeps me in shape at a time of year when its all too easy to lay around and do nothing!
I truly hope you can find something(s) that truly motivate you and where possible merge avocations and vocations. I welcome your feedback to this post – you can use the reply space below. Further, I do manage a Facebook group designed to help RV’ers in many ways – not the least of which is to provide a forum for discussing ‘earning income on the road’. I invite you to join me there!