100% Perfect or 80% Good

“The path to perfection leads to procrastination. Don’t let perfect ruin good.”
—  Harry Beckwith

We have all heard that practice makes perfect, but I am here to tell you that the pursuit of perfection in the world of online marketing can lead to Stuck City, or worse, Nothing Gets Done Town. One of the reasons why many business owners whose revenue depends on online marketing can’t get going or aren’t doing any better than running an expensive hobby is because they are suffering from perfection paralysis.

Perfection paralysis takes many forms; a writer having writer’s block, an artist sitting in front of a blank canvas, or the internet marketer who promises a newsletter but never delivers. I know many (including me) who suffer from perfection paralysis in some form, but I think I have a cure. I’ve come to believe that 80% good is better than 100% perfect.

Stop Perfecting and Start Doing

It was midnight and Patty Perfect was on her fourth draft of her article. She had chosen her words carefully, crafting a masterpiece of words and thoughts about her feelings of the state of junk e-mail in today’s society. She spots a typo here and a missing comma there. She types and retypes, reviews, and asks for feedback from her husband. Patty is worried – worried about what her audience will think of her and how the public will judge her. She is paralyzed at the thought of her tour de force not being perfect. Days later, she finally relents and posts to her blog.

Meanwhile, Grant Goodenough was multitasking as usual. He was taking notes while attending a one-hour teleclass and hears some great advice about what to include and exclude in e-mail “subject lines” – a hot topic with his clients. He quickly types up a couple of paragraphs thinking how he and his client, Coach Sally, were just talking about this very topic earlier today! Ok, so it wasn’t the work of art that he would have liked, but he posts to his blog anyway.

Which post do YOU think is most helpful, useful, and relevant? Whose clients do YOU think are going to benefit the most?

It’s the relationship that counts

Let’s be honest, no one is perfect. No matter how hard you try, your e-course will have a grammar error (someone will tell you and you will fix it), you will accidentally send a broadcast to a list you didn’t intend to (who knows, maybe you’ll get a client out of it :)) and, yes, a newsletter will have a broken hyperlink (it’s not the end of the world).

I know I may catch some grief for saying these things, but I’ve been doing this for awhile and trust me, it happens to everyone – even the internet marketing heavy hitters! What’s most important is that it gets done and that you maintain your relationship with your clients and subscribers.

Don’t get me wrong, I strive for perfection. Nothing makes me cringe like a giant typo front and center on an ezine headline. But I look at it this way – at least I’m getting the ezine! I know many people who are hung up on their newsletter, web page, you name it, being “perfect” that nothing gets done.

No newsletter = no relationship, no connection, no subscribers, no nothing.

I don’t know about you, but I’ll take Goodenough over Perfect any day. So, stop perfecting and start doing!

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