You can’t make money sitting on your ass

If you want to know the secrets to business success – it’s not really a secret.  One of the key factors to business success is follow through!

Follow through as in “you can’t make money just sitting on your ass.”

It’s been estimated that 75% of internet leads are lost because of lack of follow through.  If I had to point to  the single most common reason for marketing failure – it would have to be lack of follow through.

There’s an upcoming movie called Yes Man based on the Danny Wallace book of the same name.  In the book, Wallace describes how he spent six months “saying Yes where once would have said No”. He embarked on this experiment in an effort to make his life more interesting and positive.

It should be noted that when Wallace said, “Yes” in his experiment, he obviously followed through because simply saying yes  won’t change your life.

Saying “Yes” is one thing, PERFORMING the action of “Yes”  is another!

Jim Carey stars in the movie version and it’s being marketed as a “comedy”.  Obviously there are zany consequences to saying yes to everything that comes your way! If I were actively pimping the movie, I’d include a video trailer here.

When opportunity comes knocking – it’s one thing to say “YES” – it’s another to follow through and not only open the door, but walk through it!

There’s a saying that goes along the lines of, “If you want something done – give the task to a busy man.”  I frequently think of this quote when I ask for information from someone and they never get back to me because more often than not, it’s the people who aren’t DOING anything who don’t get back to me.

For example,  I remember when I was composing a newsletter and the natural “call to action for the article was to offer more information.  The problem was while the newsletter was VERY relevant to what was showing up in my practice at the time, I had neither the desire nor the resources to fill this need for my clients and/or newsletter subscribers.   Fortunately, I had recently been introduced to someone who claimed that this area WAS his area of expertise and it was somewhere he wanted to dedicate his time and energy.

So – I wanted to offer my readers access to a resource and I had recently been introduce to someone who wanted to offer these services.  (In case you didn’t know – this is one of my FAVORITE things in life.  I just ADORE introducing people who need each others services.)

So,  I contacted this fellow and asked if he had a free e book or white paper which I could offer my newsletter readers to close the issue.  He replied that he didn’t have anything prepared, but he’d get something to me in a few days.

At that moment, I was feeling REALLY good about my place in the universe.  Talk about “flow”.   I mean, not only am I about to connect my readers with someone who can really solve their problems, but I’ve also helped put a fledgling service provider on the right “marketing” track as well.  Since this guy was just starting out, I gave him some slack on not having this piece prepared.

If you’re going to be selling your services (a.ka. nothing but air), part of your marketing strategy must be to have some sort of “virtual brochure”.  There’s nothing better way than to start establishing trust with your potential clients  than a white paper on “10 Things you must know about [insert service provided here].”   Such a resource is literally a must have resource as part of your marketing strategy!

I made the request for that white paper over a year ago and I’m still waiting.  Don’t get me wrong,  I’m not upset.  On the contrary, I feel like I dodged a bullet.  I mean, the last thing I want to do is to introduce people to a flake who can’t or won’t follow through.

Unfortunately, this post wasn’t inspired by a year old event.  It was inspired by deja vu all over again kind of thing that just happened.  Maybe December is just a bad month to try to get anything DONE!

Follow through is one of the key factors in business success.

Follow through is more precious than gold.  Follow through is more precious than any gemstone.   Sometimes follow through is called by another name “persistence”.

I guess that’s yet another reason why a blog is a GREAT internet presence to judge someone’s”follow through” factor.  What better way to observe someone’s “follow through” and vision than through a blog.  I mean, it takes a certain level of dedication to commit to a blogging schedule and stick to it.   It’s one thing to have a business vision – it’s another to follow through and make it a reality.

If you want to know the secret to success – you should know it’s not a big secret -it’s follow through.

Thomas Edison is credited with saying, “Opportunity is missed by most people because it is dressed in overalls and looks like work.”

When opportunity knocks, get off your ass and answer the door.  Oh – and if opportunity isn’t knocking – get off your ass and start knocking on some doors!!!  Once someone answers – FOLLOW THROUGH!!!


  1. Hi Kathy – You always offer pearls of wisdom and this time you’ve given us the entire string. Follow-through is the key element to success, and what I sometimes find the most difficult task to accomplish. Thank you for the reminder today.

    Also your headline sparked a funny memory. Years ago I met a very elegant woman who lived in a fantastic high rise condo in downtown Los Angeles. She was impeccably, expensively kept by a married man. When asked about this arrangement, she responded, “Betsy, I learned a long time ago that I was literally sitting on a million bucks.” 😀


  2. Betsy,

    That’s the best line I believe I’ve EVER heard!!!

  3. Phew! Boy am I glad I respond to your emails!

    I recently had a really good example of perfect follow through if you’d like to take a gander. It’s along a slightly different line, but still fits nicely.

    Btw, you had me at “You can’t make money sitting on your ass” 🙂

    Dennis Edells last blog post..UPDATED: Would You Like To Sponsor My *Best Blog Review* Contest?

  4. Dennis,

    It’s a GREAT POST! And yes – you are indeed amongst those who know the meaning of “follow through”. You’re officially sorted in the “successful” pile. Now take your place beside Betsy, Cathh, Tom, Hunter, Liz, Barbara, Davina, Sara and all of the other “successful” people who “get it” 🙂

  5. Woohoo, I’m successful! Now, where did I put all that money….LOL

    Thanks Kathy, that means a lot. 😉

    Dennis Edells last blog post..UPDATED: Would You Like To Sponsor My *Best Blog Review* Contest?

  6. LOL Kathy – I posted this on Twitter and Tim Brownson said the title should have had “unless you’re a bus, or train driver” on the end of it.

    It’s surprising the number of people who don’t follow through. I’ve seen me agree to look at things before, been really interested and nobody calls me back as promised. It’s such a waste.

    Cath Lawsons last blog post..Affiliate Commissions – Is Your Anti-Virus Eating Them?

  7. I’ve always love the saying, “follow-up is where the money is.” Your’s is a bit more colorful but just as true. 🙂 Great post title, that alone got the click-through and I enjoyed your little story as well. An online presence leads to more opportunities but we have to decrease our promises and increases our discernment at the same time or we will be spending most of our time marketing someone else’s business.

    Tom Volkar/ Delightful Works last blog post..Grounding Your Small Business Vision

  8. I really like the idea of creating a white paper. I bookmarked this post for myself and stumbled it so others can access this great information.

    Stacey / Create a Balances last blog post..Celebrate Your Life Friday!

  9. @Cath,

    Thanks for the tweet!

    I’m sure that most of your “work” involves helping business owners discern where to say yes and where to say no!

    @Stacey –
    Every business owner needs a white paper, an ebook or a blog post that they can “pull out” quickly to let people know who they are and what they do. Think of it as a written “elevator” speech!

  10. Kathy,

    This post is as compelling as its title. Well-said. I’ve written about it a few times myself, this tendency to think money will come to you without putting in the hours (or at least to whine when it doesn’t), and boy, you nailed it.

    “It’s one thing to have a business vision – it’s another to follow through and make it a reality.”

    Perfect. Just perfect.



    Kellys last blog post..Tip of the Week: Unlined Envelopes Save Customers!

  11. Tom – two Ieave outs to what you suggest. Decrease one-way promises for sure, or sideline with a marketing business. 🙂

    Dennis Edells last blog post..Your Link Just Got MORE Valuable!

  12. I totally agree with you Kathy, following through is very important to business success. But I also think that this applies to everything you do in life.
    Anyway keep up the good work!

    Julius Kuhn-Regniers last blog post..How to Make Articles More Memorable

  13. @Kelly – Thanks and welcome!
    @Dennis – made the edit for you 😉
    @Julius – Thanks to you too and welcome as well!

  14. I think follow-through is probably the single most important key to success in anything, thanks for the reminder. That, and showing up.

    Jannies last blog post..Well, it was Thanksgiving Friday and all…

  15. Showing up is follow-through if you told someone you would show up. 😉

    Dennis Edells last blog post..Your Link Just Got MORE Valuable!

  16. Hi Kathy. Thanks for the mention. You’ve ventured into one of my pet peeves… people who don’t get back to you… especially the ones who say they will and on what day… and then they don’t! Drives me nuts.

    I’m working with a client that I adore, but my level of trust and respect for them is quickly going out the window. Three times they’ve not come through; in a time period of less than 2 weeks. Business is business for crying out loud.

    Great post!

    Davinas last blog post..Step Out Of Crisis And Into Power

  17. I worked at a company a while back (I won’t say where)… The owner bought some internet leads. I did my own thing so I was good (I didn’t ask for any leads). A few days later I asked: “so how’s it goin’?” The response: “oh, I haven’t gone through them yet. I’ve been organizing who I want to call first.” Mind you, almost a full week had gone by at this point.

    Long story, short, the leads were almost useless by the time they were actually contacted.

    I agree with you 100% that follow through is important! Do what you say you’re going to do when you say you’re going to do it. That’s how trust is built. That’s how awesome reputations come about. Sure, every now and then we might slip up and fail to deliver. But admit your mistake and correct it because that moment isn’t just going to go away with time (people will remember the way you did with the example you shared).

    Ricardo Buenos last blog post..Yup…I’m Addicted to Social Media! You?

  18. I could not agree more with this post. If you think about the bad experiences you’ve had with service providers, it is a lack of follow-through that is the most frustrating. Here you are a paying customer and you feel like you are ignored or a burden. be responsive to the clients needs and you’re likely to have a customer for life.


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