Is Information Overload Killing Your Business?

Do you really need to know?

I’ve been selling stuff online for 22 years, and I can pretty much tell which people are going to get stuff done and who isn’t.

How can I tell?

By the questions they ask in the help desk.

For example, we got a ticket where a customer sent their assistant to ask around 25 questions in a single ticket (I am NOT exaggerating). It felt like they were trying to have us create a mini masterclass just for them.

Well, we answered the questions, but I told my help desk, “They’re not going to do anything.” 

That’s what always happens. The people who come in and ask a ton of questions never do anything because they’re too busy collecting information.

Why is their business dying right before their eyes?

Information overload paralyzes them. They are looking at the entire process the entire time and trying to build this complete grand plan BEFORE they even get started.

It’s like trying to count the number of trees in the forest from 30,000 feet in the air. It’s just not going to happen.

Trying to think this way is exactly WHY they never get anything done. 

In contrast, the people who say, “Okay. This is where I am, and I need to know how to do this next step.” 

And then go and do that next step… and then they go to the next… and the next!

Those are the people who succeed.

How do I know that?

Let me tell you a story…

I remember my mom and dad arguing in the car when I was a little kid. We were driving to Florida, and my mom was asking him a ton of questions. My dad said, “Look, I can get you 99% of the way there because I know which direction to go and which main highway to be on. And when we get within five miles, then we’ll worry about exactly which street to take.” 

Even as a little kid, I actually thought that was a pretty decent argument.

For most of the things you’re going to need to do, especially in online business, if you know where you want to end up, you can get yourself 90% of the way just on common sense, basic questions, and some basic education.

The last 5% is when you start asking the real specific minutia questions. But, by then, you have 95% of your momentum built up. I’ve heard people call it “just-in-time learning.” I’ve also heard it called the “hundred yards in fog.” (You can drive across the entire country in complete fog as long as you can see a hundred yards in front of you. You don’t need to see all the way to the coast from the beginning of your journey.)

Don’t try to know EVERYTHING. Just know exactly where you want to end up and the first / next step to get you there.

This applies to creating funnels, websites, a blog, a business, a product, a podcast, anything…

Know what you want to achieve as the end result and then focus on the next step you need to take, and don’t worry about all the details now. You’ll figure them out as you go along.

You might hear some people say, “I need to know everything just so I’m prepared.”  No, you don’t. No successful person ever does.

Don’t worry about every stop you’re going to need to make along the way. Just know your next action based on the direction you’re heading and take it.

Reduce Stress

The ability to move forward WITHOUT trying to know it all up front helps reduce stress.

For example, I was writing up all the copy for the Copywriting Secrets book funnel a while ago, and it started to get pretty stressful because I was up against a deadline.

But I reminded myself,

“Hey, I just have to do the intro right now.” 

“Now, I need to get together the testimonials.” 

“Next, I need to get together the story.”

“I need to have some bullets.”

All of a sudden, the overwhelm was gone and knew I could get it all done faster than I’d originally anticipated. So be careful not to overload yourself with that “every single detail is essential” thought process. Be careful of asking too many questions about stuff you’re not going to use yet (and will probably forget anyway) and just take action, one step at a time.

Speaking of taking action…

Do you want more clicks, more sales, and more profits every single day?

If you want to get really good (really fast) at putting words on paper, emails, websites and social media that make people buy, try, and subscribe no matter what you sell, grab a free copy of my book “Copywriting Secrets” – I’ll pay for the book, you just pay a small shipping fee! Go to now and claim your copy… supplies are limited!

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  • Virginia Reeves

    Reply Reply April 29, 2020

    Jim – as always, you offer simple suggestions that can be used in many situations we encounter in life. The long view gets you going, do interim steps, and then finesse with the details.

  • Jeff Stephan

    Reply Reply April 29, 2020

    Good Day Jim,
    Again I am reminded of the wisdom you share on this webpage and I thank You!
    Taking the next 15 minutes, is a very productive way to tackle much of the loose ends in my office.
    Thanks again,

  • Deb Williams

    Reply Reply May 1, 2020

    Love…love…love this. This is EXACTLY what I needed to hear at the EXACT time I needed to hear it. Thank you Jim Edwards.

    I’ve followed you for a long time. Way back with your first ebook. How to write an Ebook in 7 days.

    You give great advise. Tell Terry Hello. And Susan. And Nancy. And Robert. And your Mom And Dad. And Dexter And Tiffany.

  • Michelle De Lude

    Reply Reply May 3, 2020

    All my 9-5 jobs involved planning for every possible contingency, so letting go of that has been one of the hardest things I’ve faced as an entrepreneur. This was an encouraging article. Thank you!

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