I recently watched a Sam Ovens video that expressed the importance of the long-term view. It really got me thinking how this applies to Digital and Affiliate Marketing, and to Business and Life as a whole. Basically, it opened up my mind to just how short-term and ineffective my thinking had been, with Affiliate Marketing especially.

So I’m ready, where’s my commissions?

I had been expecting to make Affiliate commissions within hours of posting some new content with links, people streaming to my site and following those all-important referrals by the dozen. However, though I knew of the importance of building an audience, I hadn’t respected just how long and how much effort it would take to build one. Also, SEO plays such as this site are difficult to rank in a short space of time.

Long Term awakening

So, anything in business is not the result of what you have done in the last day, week or even month. Typically it is the culmination of work that was done some time ago, and only bears fruit many years after the initial work is done. Think of the Doctor that studies for 10 years before finally being able to charge for a single consultation. Everything they charge is as a result of all that hard work that has been done over a long space of time.

Youtube Yawn?

I started a Youtube channel all excited about my prospects, only to slow video production to a trickle when I didn’t get the instant results I was expecting. I just wasn’t prepared for the feeling of rejection that came with producing videos and getting few views. Again, this has been just a case of me looking far too short term and not respecting that creating a well subscribed Youtube channel takes not only good content but a lot of effort and consistency to create meaningful results.

A change of paradigm

Then recently I was offered the opportunity to work on a small software project that was well beyond my current skillset. My initial thoughts were to reject the offer as it was out of my league at the time, but after some deliberation I realised it was only my short-term focus that stopped me from seeing this as a fantastic opportunity to learn and improve the range of my skills. I promptly accepted the project, and I will quote a timeframe that will respect the amount of learning involved, and probably discount the price because I will gain so much more than the fee from this project.

The key

I now believe that thinking long term is one of the most important and little known keys to entrepreneurship. There’s gratification that can be gained by getting that small reward now, but thinking of the results in a year, two years or beyond of today’s actions is what separates entrepreneurs from those who just want a flashy car.