If you’ve never been there, you’re either very fortunate or very new to internet marketing. For the majority of marketers this is a familiar place – it is also a major stumbling point that will cause you to lose a lot of money.
The short and sweet of it is that you need to worry less about making things perfect, and worry more about making money. Perfectionism is a vicious time-sink that will eat all your time and leave you with little or nothing to show for it.
Now I’m not advocating sloppy work or sub-standard quality. You ought to do a good job on everything that you create – but when the little nit-picking things start postponing your launch date repeatedly, then you are being a perfectionist.
Perfectionism is a horrible time-sink. You think you just want to change this one last little thing, and the next thing you know a week has gone by because you kept finding little things to “fix.”
There are a few things that you can do to avoid this . . .
1. Have a solid outline for your project.
Write down everything that you want to do for this project or that you want in your product. You’ll likely have to do a couple drafts, or revisit the idea a couple times in a couple days. But write everything down, and preferably explain why you’re adding that idea – what it will do for your customers. This should prevent you from putting a lot of unnecessary work into it.
This will do a couple things – first, if something is a cool idea but doesn’t fit in with this project, you can see that clearly, and start a different project for that idea. (Remember that you can always create a new project, even if it is somewhat similar to one you’ve already done.)
But more importantly, it will help keep you from adding things on while you’re working. Occasionally this is ok, but most of the time it is unnecessary and will do nothing but slow you down. If you’re mostly done with a project and you suddenly decide to toss a set of videos in with it, you just pushed your launch date out.
Again, new ideas should be written down and saved. They can take a number and wait for their own project. :)
2. Ask yourself if your buyers are going to notice the things that you notice.
Sure, the graphics aren’t EXACTLY what you wanted . . . but are they darn close? Are your customers going to notice anything but cool graphics? If the graphics suck, yes, redo them. But if there’s just one little thing about them that is bugging you, and nobody else would ever know the difference, move on.
The same goes for any of the other content. You may think something is wrong or off because it isn’t EXACTLY what you pictured – but your buyers won’t know that, and won’t care.
Too many marketers get caught up on the idea that if they just do these couple more little things, maybe it will add up to a few more sales. Yeah – maybe it will.
But you need to look at the bigger picture. The time you spend tweaking those couple little things might make you an extra $50, let’s say. It also may not make you a dime extra. But for some people that extra $50 is worth it . . .
Not if that same amount of time was focused on getting Project A out the door and selling, and getting the ball rolling on Project B, which brings in a couple thousand bucks.
Again, you don’t want to be sloppy with your work. Be proud of what you do. But don’t let perfectionism get in the way of getting projects wrapped up and to your customers. You’ll do it all the time and you will never make any money this way.
How do you make sure that perfectionism isn’t slowing you down?