2016

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(Dedicated to the memory of Jon Nunez, the biggest Tom Brady fan I know. The affiliate marketing industry still misses you very much.)

Back in the seventies, I remember watching an episode of Sesame Street where Kermit sang, “It’s Not Easy Bein’ Green.” Little did I know that the wise hand puppet’s song would eventually become my mantra, as a long-suffering fan of the New York Jets.

Photo of Tom Brady by Jeffrey Beall - Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0, Link Photo of Tom Brady by Jeffrey BeallOwn work, CC BY-SA 3.0, Link

 

In as much as die-hard Jet’s fans know how difficult it is to remain loyal to our team, I know they’ll appreciate how hard it is for me to write the following sentence:

Tom Brady, of the New England Deflatriots, is undeniably one of the greatest quarterbacks of all time.

(Heh, heh. See what I did there? I'm such a Jets fan!)

The Tom Brady Story

Tom Brady played baseball in high school. His skills as a left-handed hitting catcher impressed MLB scouts, which got him drafted by the Montreal Expos.

But Brady was much more passionate about football, so he passed up a future in baseball, and signed with the University of Michigan as their quarterback. Unfortunately, he wasn’t exactly Heisman material during his time on the Wolverines, and many NFL scouts ignored him.

In 2000, the Patriots drafted Brady with the 199th pick in the 6th round. Bill Belichick, previously the Jets' assistant coach, became the Patriot’s head coach that season and made Brady a fourth string QB.

By the end of the year, Brady, was backup, and got the start in 2001 when the Jets Mo Lewis knocked out Drew Bledsoe.

Since then, he’s taken the Patriots to the Super Bowl six times with four victories. He’s won three Super Bowl MVP awards, and has led his team to more division titles than any other quarterback in NFL history.

On top of the $196.1 million he earned as a quarterback, he’s also received $184.9 million in endorsement deals, making the “business of Tom Brady” something to be revered.

Here are some lessons from Tom Brady’s story that can help you score on your own field.

Don’t Settle for What Comes First

Whether it’s a job opportunity or getting involved in a new startup, don’t jump on the first offer that comes your way. Brady shows us that waiting for the right opportunity, doing something you're passionate about, can work out much better.

Work Hard Every Day Until You’ve Accomplished Your Goals

Tom Brady sweats the details. He drills for hours, on every single skill, even during the off-season, to ensure no one surpasses him. His determination and work ethic are fundamental to his success.

Haters Gonna Hate

Like other successful people, Tom Brady has haters –lots of them. Rather than letting them get in his way, he tunes out their noise, and then puts them all to shame by working harder to achieve his goals.

Steer Clear of the Asterisk

One of the most important assets of any business is integrity. Compromising it goes on your permanent record. Brady will retire as one of the greatest quarterbacks of all time with an everlasting asterisk by his name.

Even, as a Jets fan, I take no joy in that.  Erright… maybe just a little.

The idea that your blog is safe and secure because it lives on a popular site is a complete fallacy. The truth is that unless you are backing up every last piece of your content, one day it could disappear. And, as internet consultant and Harvard faculty member Nicco Mele points out, there is no phone number to call, there is no office to visit.

All you have is a form to fill out and an often false sense of hope.

Blogging Disasters Prevention and Damage Control

So the question is, if the unthinkable happens, what would be your recourse? How much content would be lost? How would your followers find you again? Here’s your crash course on what to do if your blog crashes, and what you can do now to mitigate your risk and minimize your loss.

Protect Your Customers

If your blog has any kind of e-commerce plugin, your first concern is the safety of your customer’s financial information. If you can’t yet afford a dedicated server, or don’t have the traffic to justify it, you'll want to invest in encrypting sensitive data as well as malware hacking detection services. While working on making your blog profitable, it’s important to keep your overhead low. But it’s also important to keep in mind that existing customers are your best source of income, so protecting them is essentially protecting your own profitability — not to mention it’s the ethical thing to do.

Back Up, Back Up, Back Up

Two is one and one is none: that’s the mantra that professional bloggers use when it comes to backing up their content. What would happen if your external hard drive was damaged? What would happen if the cloud crashed? It’s important to hope for the best and plan for the worst when it comes to your blog content. Everything from mailing lists to blog posts is a monetizable commodity. You’ve got to have them stored in multiple locations to protect yourself and your investment of time in building your blog. Invest in a comprehensive cloud system that not only backs up your devices and blog but also makes sure your blog stays online if the server crashes.

Also, pay attention to your uptime statistics on your chosen server to prevent server crashes. This is especially relevant to be aware of before you run a big promotion or have any other reason to expect your blog to have a sudden influx of viewership that could crash the server. Nothing stings more than pouring your time and money into a promo that successfully drives tons of traffic to your site, only to have the server crash.

Be Transparent

In the event of a disaster, reach out to your followers and customers immediately. Let them know the situation and that you’re there to answer any questions they may have. It’s crucial for your reputation that you address the issue as soon as possible to prevent customers, followers or colleagues from assuming the worst.

This is also an excellent example of the importance of utilizing multiple platforms to promote your brand. For instance, if your blog crashes, you can use Twitter and Facebook to explain what happened and when you’ll be back up and running.