What Aspiring Marketers Can Learn From The Movie “American Gangster”

Last night I was watching the movie "American Gangster".

I have seen the movie a few times, but never thought how it could actually affect the way that I run an online business.

For those who have not seen it, the movie is about the rise and fall of a heroin kingpin named Frank Lucas (played by Denzel Washington).

Now I want to make it very clear that I do not condone or agree with the behavior of Frank Lucas. But the character from the movie was a businessman... and one hell of a businessman at that.

He basically took a product that was not very well known at the time and exploded it into society. From the rich to the poor, everyone was buying from him.

At this point, I grabbed a piece of paper and started taking some very serious notes.

Building An Online Business Revolves Around A Few Key Elements

A Scene From "American Gangster" About What Business Is Built On

1) "The Most Important Thing In Business Is Honesty"

This statement is very true when it comes to running an online business. If you try to seduce your potential clients with dreams of big money fast, you will be on the fast-track to failure.

Be yourself and represent yourself in a truthful and honest way.

If you are not having results, that's ok!
honesty is the best policy
If you are not making millions of dollars, that's ok too!

People really get invested when someone is honest and they are themselves. The truth is that something like 98% of marketers fail... If you are having a rough time, don't be afraid to show that.

Readers and potential customers will be much more inclined to read the story of a real person who has problems, not one who makes money overnight.

The loudest one in the room is the weakest one in the room
Image Credit to Marfo H. - Pinterest

Have you ever seen those posts on Facebook? You know, the ones that say, "I'll help you make $10,000 in the next 10 days... comment for more info"

What do you do when you see them? My guess is that you just keep scrolling right past them.

But if you came to a post that said, "How I Made My First Dollar Online, And You Can Too!" Do you think that you would choose to read or comment on it instead?

2) Integrity and Hard Work

Anyone who has told you that running any kind of online business is easy, is either lying to you, or they are the luckiest people on the planet.

We all as Internet Marketers have fallen down, got kicked a few times, and once we got back up, fallen again.

It's normal!

Don't beat yourself up for it.

I have spent more hours tweaking small things on websites, trying to write blog posts, creating graphics, etc. than I would at any normal 9-5 job.

You have to do it because you love it. If you don't love the hard work, you are probably in the wrong profession.

Integrity is HUGE!

One of the people that I have met and gotten to know somewhat well is Dean Holland from iPro and Internet Profits Limited.

Out of everyone that I have met online, he probably has the most integrity that I have ever seen.

Once Dean created iPro he has been all about iPro and nothing else.

Have you ever bought a product online, just to find out a few days later that the product owner is pushing you towards someone else's product? Then you start getting countless emails about products?

How does it feel?

Kind of like betrayal?

Now if you are an affiliate marketer, you make your money based on selling other peoples products. However this does not mean to throw every single junky offer at the people who have been gracious enough to sign up for your mailing list.

It is your job (as someone with integrity) to only promote things that you genuinely know will help them to become more successful, or to eliminate a problem that they are having.

3) "Either You Are Somebody... Or You Are Nobody..."

If you are doing the same thing as 90% of the marketers out there, you will fail... just like 90% of the other marketers out there.be a somebody

In this day and age, you must be different, you must stand out from everyone else.

Always aim for value first!

When you help people resolve issues and problems that they are having in their life, you become more than just another internet marketer...

You become a somebody!

Why Was The Character of Frank Lucas Such A Great Businessman?

In the movie, Frank Lucas (played by Denzel Washington) was more successful for anyone else because he took care of the people, so the people took care of him.

He had a better product and a better service than anyone else at the time.

He branded himself and his product, so everyone knew where it was coming from. If it was his brand, you knew it was going to be the best.

He crushed his competition because he gave the people better value.

What You Can Do Today To Start Being A Better, More Successful Marketer:

Start By Being An Honest Marketer

Honesty and integrity are the two biggest qualities in a successful online business. If you are misleading your readers or potential clients... STOP... IMMEDIATELY!

It will come back to bite you later. Your business will fizzle out when people find out you are not honest and you will be left with nothing.

Never promote anything that you wouldn't or don't use yourself. Don't be a junk marketer and throw every product against the wall and see what sticks.

Become A Somebody

This might sound scary... but it doesn't have to be. Just take it one step at a time and you will become a somebody pretty quickly.

Start by branding yourself. Whether it is your name, or your company... get yourself a logo and a style and put it in front of people.

If you are using your name to brand yourself (which I highly suggest) make sure people see your name enough times to remember it.

If You Are Not Using Social Media, Now Is The Best Time To Start

I used to loathe Social Media. So much in fact that I would stay away from it. That was a huge mistake.

When on Social Media, get involved whenever you can. Add value to peoples' posts, like and share, get social and network. Find the biggest people in your niche and do your best to get in with them.

An important note to mention though is make sure that you are delivering value. If you don't know the answer to something, go back to Number 1... Be honest or do not get involved.

Comments like, "nice job" don't get you noticed.

If You Don't Have Your Own Product... Start Creating One

The best way to become a somebody online is to create your own product. People seem to overthink product creation, so they tend to stay away from it.

It really doesn't have to be as hard as it seems. Find a group of people who are having a problem, and help them solve it.

You can use:

Anywhere people hang out, you will be able to find problems if you look hard enough.

Spend your time creating the most epic, helpful, product you can. Don't hold anything back!

If there are competing products out there... Improve on them, add to them, find out a new way to do something.

When your main focus is value... when people see your name they will quickly realize that whatever you are selling is going to be the best quality.

If You Are An Affiliate Marketer And Sell Other People's Products

Make sure they are the best! Use someone like Dean Holland for inspiration.

His program The Big Commission Blueprint and iPro Partnership are top notch and teach all of these lessons. If you are struggling now, they will definitely help you to put a secure business foundation in place.

Use These Techniques And You Will Be Successful In Time

If you are an aspiring online marketer, copy what the best people are doing, and do it better. It sounds like a lot, but in time if you put these successful habits into action early, you will become successful!

Time to go out there and be the Frank Lucas of the Internet Marketing world... minus the drugs and crime of course!

Have you seen the movie "American Gangster"? Do you agree or disagree that he knew about business and how to be successful?

I love to hear comments from the readers, so if you have any, please leave them below in the comment section.

If you got any use out of this post, or know someone that would... please post and share

Until next time!

All the best,
Jeff Sollee

@J_Sollee - Twitter

Add me on Facebook!

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  1. David rhodes February 24, 2016
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