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Why athletes make the best Internet marketers

Here’s something interesting I’ve noticed.
People who perform regular athletic activity tend to outperform those who don’t.
There might not be a lot of sports professionals in Internet marketing, but the ones who were on a college team or played a sport (including competitive poker) competitively might have an edge.

Here are some reasons why:

  • Discipline: Athletes are used to structured training schedules. College-level swimmers might do a round of training from 5am to 7am, head to classes, then get back into the pool and do a second training session from 4pm to 6pm. This goes on for 5-6 days a week, with a rest day. This is in the midst of having to attend classes too. I remember following this schedule for about a quarter till I dropped out of swimming. The effort-reward didn’t agree with me, especially since the women were regularly swimming faster than me. The discipline factor comes in because training is always a priority, unless you had a serious illness, you’d still continue with training. This same attitude also applies to building an Internet business, especially at the early stages. If you slacken, take a week off or take your eye off the target, you’re likely to crash and burn.

  • Fighting through the pain: One of the major differences between amateur and pro athletes is the williness to fight through the pain. If you’re heading to the gym for a casual workout, you might feel a little weak, maybe from a late night, so you give up. The more committed athletes will follow the program, follow the plan and get what they need to get done. Procrastination doesn’t help with anything, so the only thing excuses do is to delay your success. Doing a 3- or 5-day grind can be brutal when you’re working on getting a project up, but unless you do it, it might drag on and end up taking weeks, or even months in some cases to get done. So choosing to go through a “hell week” or months of half-assed effort to get a project up might not seem to be a hard choice. But you’d be surprised how many take the easy way out.
  • An expectation of winning: Athletes are used to being winners (and losers). They will not enter every race emerging a winner, but those with strong-minds and focus will know that it’s a matter of working through the ratios, biding their time till their moment comes. There’s a realistic expectation than working their work through the Association of Tennis Professionals (ATP) or Professional Golfers’ Association (PGA) rankings is going to take time and it may not always work out, but keeping at it they may get their moment. It’s the same with starting and building out Internet marketing campaigns. You probably will not see immediate success, most of your campaigns might fail to break even, but if you keep at it, there’ll eventually be a light at the end of the tunnel. Take note, that probably 90% of Internet marketers with big hopes and big dreams will probably give up before they reach that point. So, are you in the 90% who gives up? Or in the 10% that succeeds?
  • Focus: It takes determination and resolve to focus almost all your resources in one activity to become exceptional at it. That single-mindedness spending years doing something means not switching what you’re doing, even if you’re not getting the results you want yet. In the Internet marketing world, it’s common to see Internet marketers, bloggers, affiliates switch what they’re doing just because it’s not giving immediate results. That’s like planting a seed and expecting to see a tree the next day. It’s not going to happen and having those unrealistic expectations is setting yourself up for disappointment. The old quote I believe in “If you do what you’re supposed to do, you’ll get what you’re supposed to get” applies here.


If you’ve made it this far, you might be wondering, “So what if I’m not an athlete? Aren’t you overgeneralizing?”

This came about because I’ve been hearing from corporates who say they especially like hiring employees who played college sports. They also like ex-military. If you don’t fall into either category, there’s nothing to stop from defining who you are and what you want to become. There’s a measure of figuring out what you want to do, fighting through the pain and going for it.

Now, get back to work.

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