What Is The Best Way To Learn Online Marketing?

If you're reading this blog looking for online success, you might be wanting to get started with Internet Marketing. When you market online this can be a very lucrative business, but like anything that you want to do well, it has a steep learning curve attached. Don't be under any illusions. There is going to be work involved.

In this blog post I'm going to discuss three of the best options for you to help you get started, so you can choose whichever one is best for you.

The first option is the one you probably think of when you want to become an expert in something. Go to college! There are college courses to interest almost anyone. But, there's a problem. Sure, you can join a general business course at college, and, if you're lucky, they might have some great advice for you about marketing on the Internet. However, try as you might to find them, these type of courses are rare. Plus, the Online Marketing world changes so regularly that you can't be sure that your course is up to date. Often, it's best to look at alternatives that have you putting the skills you need into practice.

The second choice is to find some great Internet Marketing e-books and to learn from them. There's no new shortage of e-books on the Web, both free and paid, and many of these are excellent. You just need to be able to separate the corn from the cob. I've managed to succeed pretty well myself through learning using books, both physical books and e-books. But they just don't work for everyone. If you're not already a technical person you might struggle to set up Web sites, implement profit funnels and generally get started. There are better methods.

My recommendation is the final choice. It's to invest in yourself with personal coaching. There are different types of this. You could arrange for an individual mentor, or you could take coaching as a member of group, in a Webinar setting. A Webinar is an online seminar where you can see the screen and hear the voice of the presenters. The good thing about a webinar is that it gives you the chance to interact live with the presenters and ask questions. This can be highly beneficial if you're just struggling to get started. Because coaches will direct the teaching directly at the people in the group, this method of learning has all the advantages of a college course, but with up to date information and not having to leave home.

Whichever one of these methods you choose, I strongly encourage you to learn online marketing now, rather than wait. So long as you devote yourself, there is no reason why you can't make a success of it.


Have you identified a great way of learning online marketing that works for you? Did you make mistakes along the way that you want others to avoid. Just type in the Leave A Reply box below and add your comments…

30 replies on “What Is The Best Way To Learn Online Marketing?”

Thom ~
My personal preference for learning is webinars.  90% of adults are visual learners, and that definitely includes me!
But at the top of my list is having a mentor.  I have several mentors, however, my personal mentor is Jessica Swanson of Shoestring Marketing.  Before I met her and started having her as my guide, I had zero success in online marketing.  She turned that scenario around in a heartbeat!
You're right about e-books.  Some hold a lot of value and some are pure garbage.

Hey there Tom, terrific post and one great question.
I am like you in thought, get coaching. It is a tremendous opportunity to get someone whom has spent at least a few successful years in the internet marketing arena to give advice and encouragement.
It could save you a bundle in the long run.
When I started out back in '04 it was on ebay. I wanted to sell more and quickly found that a really good descriptions had a lot to do with getting bids.
From there I began learning copy writing. That is where I found my first real life mentor. He had a membership program. One of the first I had come across. Ben and I exchanged emails quite a few times while I was in the process of learning this craft.
Without his help I probably would have never learn what I know now. I have been writing copy now for over five years and still don't know it all and  probably never will.
Back then email was the big thing in coaching. Many guru's like Jimmy D. Brown and Joe Vitale used email to coach there students.
Now you have facebook, twitter and many other better forums of communication that has open up in the last three years.
Ebooks are great if you know who to get the information from. That is the big secret right now. there are many echo's. Watch out for them.

Hi Tom,
What you say is so true, it takes a lot of hard work and a steep learning curve to become an internet marketer. Having a mentor is what got me to the position I am in now and I would recommend this to anyone starting out.
Michelle Jayes

Hi Thom,
Number #3 is really the fastest way to gain knowledge about Internet Marketing.
Not all coaches are created equal, so I recommend that people find someone they like to learn from that they feel would be the best fit for what they want to achieve in IM…
Webinars and seminars are great ways of connecting and learning from others…I really like going to local Meetups to connect with like minded people like myself and building friendships from there.
Keep up the good work my friend…

Thanks everyone, I'm so glad we're all in agreement about coaching. There are different ways of coaching (I saw forum based coaching advertised yesterday), but Melanie, like you I prefer webinars. Sam, live coaching at seminars sounds like a good business model too, but I've not seen much of that (only the one-off seminars) – maybe that's a new avenue to exploit?

William, thanks very much for sharing your story with us. It shows how valuable mentor schemes can be.

I guess the main difference is between shorter term webinar courses (covering a more specific topic) and more general longer term Internet Marketing mentoring. I can definitely see a place for both of these.

I actually joined a membership site called The Niche Blogger and I have learned a ton there! Man, I knew nothing when I started, but not I'm rolling along.

Jen, yes I think membership sites are great too, so long as they've got a community aspect to them. A lot of the relationship building in forums is really important and you can't match that through learning using other modalities.

Hey Tom,
I am currently studying a joint honours degree in English and Business Studies. In my two years of studying business in this degree online marketing has barely ever been mentioned.
Being new to the internet market myself I have found that reading forums have been the best way to grasp simply concepts. I have combined this with reading blogs of peoples experiences to learn from their mistakes before I start making my own.
I truely believe that the best way to gain knowledge on how to market a product online is to read everything that even scratches the surface of the subject. After a good read up I think its best to try it first hand with trials and errors. After a while each individual will see what obtains them the best results.

Jamie, I think you can learn an awful lot from forums and blogs, particularly introductory stuff (and more advanced stuff, I'd like to think that I share a lot more than most of this blog, including things I've tried but have gone wrong) – but at some point it's worth paying for an education.

After all, you do that for a degree without a second thought (not that there aren't other advantages of taking a degree – I still fondly miss my student days).

It's interesting how online marketing hasn't really made a dent even at the degree syllabus. I guess that some of it is that, with a degree, you should be able to pick up any business area without too much difficulty (at least that's the theory, the practice is completely different). One thing you could think about, assuming you're going into your final year, is basing a dissertation around online marketing. Not only does it give you an excuse to learn more (and maybe even make some money as a sideline), you can also use it to convince your lecturers that it deserves its own place in the degree syllabus.

I had my ups and downs as well when it comes to earning online. Some people think it might be that easy but they were wrong it really needs hard work and complete understanding how it works and the process.
Very interesting topic, I didnt managed to control myself on giving my comment about the post. Anyways, All in all you did a great job on sharing this information to us.

If theres one thing I've learnt about online marketing, its that the money is never stable. After reading a countless number of blogs, no one every seems to be able to earn a decent average. They will have days where they earn nothing, and others where they will break the bank.
I agree that I would probably learn more if I paid someone to teach me, however the problem is finding someone who deserves your money.

Its not easy and fast outcome though it really need hard work.
If you gonna ask about mistakes? I had lots of them but so far Im learning from my mistakes.
Anyways thanks for sharing this and I already added this blog to my site so my followers can see your great work.

Hey SCJA16,
You should share your mistakes or write a blog about them yourself. I've always been one to encourage people to share their experiences as everyone can learn something different from them.
Personally I've never lost money through internet marketing. Instead I'm the type of person that wastes hours upon hours on different projects to find they dont work. My current project being using facebook to market.

I recommend webinars as well. They really work well and do the best at demonstrating the power and usefulness of internet marketing because your watching it happen right in front of your face.
The best way I think to gain experience at online marketing is just like anything in life. You have conquer your initial fears and just do it. Failure is just part of learning process, and the best part of failing once in a while, is you learn from it and make yourself better.
Great post, keep them coming they are really good.

Hey Sandy,
When you say Webinars did you mean a specific one, or just look over different ones in general? I'm all for reading up some more, hence why I'm interested. I totally agree though that you need to gain experience in order to become a good online marketing, and this can only be gained from a hand on approach., which reminds me I need to go take more risks!

I don’t know if this will help. I know everyone knows what Google ad sense and Amazon on blogger. What happen was I almost got my first payment though Google blocked my account and their reason was abusive click ( I forgot the right word but they meant that someone that I know did a multiple click that was not allowed) I don’t know who that person was so after waiting a month there my blog was useless.

Any webinar that deals with what you want to learn about. Make sure that before you go to any webinar out there on the web, that you research that specific and make sure it is a legit one. There are a lot of hacks out there that are more of a get rich quick scheme or are using tactic that are out dated or just plain wrong. The first step in risk taking is always the hardest one after that it's cake. Cheers.

Thanks for the advice Sandy. It's always a problem weeding through the decent schemes are the ones that are saturated, but like you said risk taking is the hardest part.

Thanks for sharing this information, Thom I reckon a lot of people like myself will get something to remember regarding online marketing. You are right, online marketing is very lucrative and with the right attitude and skills one cannot be far from success. Kudos!

Just what I needed, thank you very much Thom! I have had a decent success with earning online and agree that you must devote your self to and work hard for it. A lot of helpful tips and techniques are also easily available online. A lot of info are just a click away. Thanks Thom, another great post here.

I don't know if this applys to my current situation but yeah I now work freelance taking up web design projects and most of my clients I get online. I have read a lot of cool tips from online marketing blogs too, since I also need to advestise my services. I think we just need to be more careful from get rich quicker schemes which is also available along with the legit stuff in the net.

Chris, freelancing is a very viable strategy for making money online (and I'm glad it's working for you). Essentially, it's taking a skill you had already, rather than working from scratch to learning online marketing through another path. So, I'd always recommend people considered that first, if they thought they had a viable skill.

The hardest part is always getting the initial clients. It's fine once you have a few clients, as you can get repeat business and referrals, but getting (and impressing) the first few is difficult. Advertising should work, but it's not as cut and dry as all that. You can lose your shirt with paid advertising if you don't know what you're doing.


I agree with you Thom on paid advertising it is a slippery slop if you lose control.  I also am with you on using a viable skill to help in online marketing. I know too many people that get excited about the prospect of making alot of money on online and and jump into a product or item they don't fully understand, and when they see nothing coming out of it the excitement wears off very fast.

Online marketing can be a challenging and exciting business. I spend alot of time on Twitter and this is great way to not only learn the business but to get results rather quickly if you know what your are doing of course. I use a service called Sponsored Tweets, Sponsored tweets is essentially a service that pays you for tweeting (It is a little more compilcated than that). I recommend it, it's and most importantly it's free!

I think your newest post about new products is yet another way to learn and get better at online marketing. I haven't looked into them but after reading the post and the comments about their effectiveness I can't help but not want to try putting one together. If it is yet another way to become better at internet marketing consider me sold.

Thom I totally agree. Along with your first and second suggestion, the third is by far the most important and something I write often about on my blog.

A mentor is such a valuable resource that I often where I would be without my mentor's. I have many well known Internet Marketing friends who also agree that hard work and knowledge plays a big part, but ultimately having a mentor or coach was priceless.
Find somebody who has the life you want and follow what they do, then beg them to mentor you… You will never regret it.

Great post! 
One critical thing I found that works for me is to keep things simple.
When I first got into internet marketing I was so hungry to learn that I went a bit crazy and started buying every marketing and money-making system that I could get my hands on.
Unfortunately, I got myself so overwhelmed that I ended up not following through with them and I finally broke my bank account.
I quit everything for awhile, but upon my return to the internet marketing arena I decided to do things differently.
I decided to: stick with one coach, implement what my coach recommends, and make sure I have the funds to allow for the completion of my project(s). 
No matter how tempting it is to click the "Buy Now" button on all those wonderfully written sales letters that come to my email box every day, I have learned, and still am learning, to practice a bit of self-control. This has proven to be the most effective way for me to actually learn internet marketing.
So, my new motto is: find someone good to work with, stay open to learning, and keep it simple.
Thanks for another great post, Thom!

Barbie, well put!

Simplicity is the key.

I can tell you one mistake I made in the early days. And that was going after too many different products – and looking at too many different techniques. Now, I'm normally good at juggling things – but that was just spreading myself too thin.

Nowadays I concentrate mainly on a few techniques that I know work well for me, and only occasionally try other things when I have the right time to commit to them.

I think any good coach would tell you much the same thing – hey, maybe that's that new avenue I should explore!


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