The biggest obstacle in Internet Marketing

During my student days I spent a year and a bit in Southern France near Nice. Armed with nothing but

  • my mountain bike,
  • the slightly misguided notion that doing an engineering degree in French surely couldn’t be that difficult (despite not speaking French) since the language of engineering is mathematics and
  • the fortunate discovery that after a beer or two, neither my French colleagues nor I did mind that I didn’t speak French, and we somehow managed to communicate anyway.

Now, a beer or two in the evening is all very well, but since I didn’t want to turn into Raj from the Big Bang Theory every time I wanted to talk to a girl (or my tutor, or the check-out lady at the local Carrefour), I decided to take some French lessons. And discovered the most unusual phenomenon: whenever I learned a new word, suddenly, this word which had not existed in my Universe, was everywhere! I mean EVERYWHERE. Everyone was using it all the time. And before that little big bang, it simply hadn’t existed. (how the French can exist as a nation still is a mystery to me, since clearly they had to rely on ME to discover new words for them ….;-) Anyway, there’s a similar concept I’d been struggling with for a long time, and the answer had been staring me in the face all the time, but I never saw it, until it suddenly materialized in front me, thanks to an email conversation I recently had with Kim Roach of The question I’d been struggling with was simply this: WHY do so many people struggle to ‘make it’ online? WHY, despite all the courses out there, are people still stuck? WHAT is the one thing that’s holding them back more than anything else? And the answer – the one that had been staring me in the face, because I can see it in pretty much every email I get, and so many coaching calls I do – is this: It’s ‘confidence’. The confidence that you’re doing the right thing. The confidence that what you’re doing will get results. The confidence that what you’ve got is ‘good enough’ (and it’ll help people) Really, this confidence issue exists at 3 levels, each successively closer to

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your ‘ego’, or ‘having to put yourself on the line’ (and risking looking like a fool). And we can go into those 3 levels another time, but the big question right here is this: The big assumption (or advice) from many gurus out there is this: Take massive action, you’ll get results, this will grow your confidence. And that’ll get you to take more action. All very well, but the reality I observe is one of a hellish hamster-wheel, running round in circles trying to muster the courage to take that first big piece of ‘massive action’. And never getting there. More like the opposite: the more often you don’t take action (after e.g. buying a course that tells you how incredibly easy it *should* really be), the lower the probability of taking that massive action. If it were learning French, the answer would be easy: another bottle of beer for you and your prospects, and boom, no more anxiety of getting out there and ‘doing it’. if only it weren’t so expensive to get all your prospects beered-up… what’s YOUR take on taking “massive action”? Veit PS: ok, ok, I have a solution in mind, and it’s closely linked to the concept of a TROS. More next time;-)



  1. Hmmmm, yes, your French experience is rather like you popping up everywhere in my radar, Veit. Everywhere I look, Veit is telling me to feel the fear, and do it anyway. Dammit, he’s right again.

    Your kids must hate you 😉

    Confidence has been my biggest Achilles heel and stumbling block, for sure.

  2. I think the biggy about confidence may lie in having some successes.

    Creating the first success whether it’s a successful email campaign or landing an offline customer (or whatever you tackle) changes the game.

    And finding something that is duplicable – either copying somebody else’s system and success, or creating an internal system that can move from experimenting to autopilot – should be part of that success.

    I think most of us run from this idea to that, from this software to that – the whole SOS (shiny object syndrome) and finally get tired of starting over 100 times.

    So, I guess maybe it’s all about foundations, structure and systems.

    Maybe I’m full of it, because I’m still in SOS recovery myself… 🙂

    But that’s what comes to mind with your question.


    • Hey Michael,

      the key here is to have your own systems and processes. It’s got to do with a concept called “self-efficacy” (fancy way of saying: you have 100% confidence in the plan – you *KNOW* it’s going to work – show me any guru’s ‘blueprint’ – and I’ll point you towards an obstacle that doesn’t exist on the guru’s radar, but leave a big gaping “oh yikes” hole in your confidence-armour… adios self-efficacy… )

  3. Hello again Veit

    I now know for certain that my stumbling block, let’s face it ‘Ruddy Great Barrier’, has been “Is what I’m doing good enough for others to pay for.”

    I eventually set myself up doing a little Fiverr gig to try to overcome this. My theory was that if it all goes wrong I’m working under a false name, Fiverr protects my email address, and I can always disappear after serving the last unlucky customer.

    What really happened was I totally over delivered on the gig as my fear of inadequacy showed up, and I got such fantastic feedback from the clients that it was like no other I’ve ever seen on there. The big problem was that the over delivering was costing me far too much time and it was not worth doing in terms of cash received. So I shut it down and retired a raving success.

    The confidence it generated was well worth it though.

    Now (finally) slowly treading into my next venture. Or should that be adventure. This time there is no hiding behind a fake name and the email address is mine.

    Good luck everyone.


    • now wouldn’t it be nice if you could do the whole thing without spending all that energy on ‘overdelivery’ just to compensate for the confidence issue?

      In practice, you’ll see this everywhere:

      coaches & consultants offering ‘free consultations’, online tons of ‘bonuses’ offered (and yes, I was once guilty of that too, and it had some rather unfortunate side-effects – got a ton of buyers who bought purely because of the bonuses, not the main product, so big FAIL there…), the list goes on.

  4. I just released my first joint venture WSO and it has boosted my confidence no end. I went in with the mindset that it wasn’t perfect enough and that everyone would be on the sales thread saying they wanted their money back.

    Anyway it worked out fine with a few hiccups that we managed to sort out and what I have noticed is that my mind suddenly opened up and to a whole array of ideas for future releases.

    Thanks for another though provoking and entertaining post Veit

    Kind Regards


  5. Veit, it’s sooo true
    No one wants to take ‘Massive Action’ in the wrong direction and hold a wake for their online hopes and dreams. How can a newbie hope to have the confidence of offering value to a list? Or someone who has been online with no sucess.
    Seek out Mentors not Gurus and WSO’s.

    Just my 2 Euros 🙂

  6. Gurus will only tell you last years secret strategy or the bleedin obvious. If there was a guaranteed, foolproof, always works secret to getting people to give you money then a)no one would tell you b)if they did then everyone would be doing it.

    You have to find what works for you. Without wanting to sound too new age its all about your own journey through life. If it feels right then follow your dream. Taking action is like buying a lottery ticket. You stand a better chance with a ticket than without one.

    If you take no action then chances are nothing will happen but there are no guarantees that the action you take will produce the result that you wish.

    Am giving this comment as Veit was feeling a little put out that he did not get enough comments on his last video. So I have taken action (not massive I admit) to at least reassure him that his musings are read and enjoyed.

    • Martyn,

      thanks, I hope I didn’t put too much of a guilt-trip on you;-)

      and you’re of course 100% spot-on: the real value is in the *experience* you gain by actually doing ‘it’ – whatever it is.

      oh, btw, there is a fool-proof way: find a problem others have, then solve it for them. The thing that stops “everyone from doing it” is of course the implementation of that simple equation…

  7. yes…the lack of confidence. Also when doing my degree in the arts I was surprised at an other phenomenon…the fear of success. This seemed to be prevalent in certain individuals that also lacked confidence as well as coming from a background where success was not encouraged. However from that mold would appear one that wanted to breakaway from that mindset and worked hard to succeed, but just at the point of making it… would back off. This I feel also could be why so many do not succeed online even though this group works hard and has the knowledge to succeed online.

  8. My problem is not taking action, my problem is taking action and getting hung up by the technology.

    This week I signed up with a new host because godaddy was p*ssing me off.

    So I spent the whole last 2 days trying to get a site up and running on a new host – learning CPanel, learning Spectaculous, etc. and running up against problem after problem due to my unfamiliarity with these.

    Ever put off doing something for a long time because you just KNOW it’s going to be a nightmare? Like installing a software or changing computers or installing a new drive or etc…? Well, that happens far too often in IM and I think THAT is one reason people don’t get further along.

    The fact is that doing stuff on the net often requires you to learn new things and sometimes those new things are a MAJOR PITA.

    Just my 2 cents.

    I’m not saying don’t do it or that I am quitting due to the difficulties. I’m just saying that I like people to be realistic and tell the Truth about IM. Sometimes it’s a huge effing PAIN.

    • lol, we use the term PITA at home because the kids haven’t figured out what it means (just yet).

      So, the big question then really is:

      as an entrepreneur, is it YOUR job to do this kind of stuff?

      I still remember the first presentation by Russell Brunson I ever saw.

      His big thing was (and probably still is) that he is NOT a technical person, he outsources everything he’s not good at.

      And he’s built a pretty sizable business using that approach.

      And with places like oDesk, where you don’t even need to hire anyone full-time, there’s really no “but I can’t afford to outsource” excuse anymore.

      there’s another side to the story, but that’s for another time;-)


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