Are You A Copycat Marketer?


Are you a copycat marketer… one who is not unique or different?

Hear Me Out… There Is A Point To This!

Years ago,  I sat on the bank of a river with my watercolors and brushes in hand…. frustrated!

My college instructor sent the class out to paint a beautiful scene using a medium that I had no experience with.  I had used other art mediums before but I didn’t know the first thing about how to use watercolor brushes properly… let alone understand the freedom and limits of the medium.

The excuse the teacher used  for not teaching us the basics was,  “I don’t want to interfere with your creativity.”

A few years later, I was taken under the wing of a great teacher.  I studied with this mentor for several years and I became skilled in using oil and acrylic paints.  I learned all the basic in these mediums from the foundation up.

After some time, I recognized that my work was looking exactly my teacher’s.  I had become a “copycat.”  I soon came to realize, in order for me to be successful, I needed to take the fundamentals I was carefully taught and develop a style of my own.

The departure was painful… but I succeeded in finding my own voice.  Eventually. my own approach lead me to design for one of the largest craft and gift companies in the U.S.

So… What’s The Point?

Anyone who has been successful in the Internet Marketing business started from the beginning… from scratch… a newbie.   They had to be instructed in the basics… the fundamentals.   The best have found  their own unique style.  It’s a journey we must all take.

However, many “newbies” are frustrated with their mentor or coach because they have not been given the rudimentary tools to be successful.  Like my watercolor teacher… they share the “what”… but not the “how.”

A good mentor will not hide any of the details of the business with her students.  She will teach sound principles of the business so her students can be successful.  She teaches the “how” as well as the “what” with out reservation.

However,  there is a danger in the student becoming a “copycat.”

Some where along the line, we all must find our own individual voice in order to be successful.  There is a lot of competition in many online niches… but those who rise above and find their own unique format, and style cannot help but succeed.   It may be painful… but it’s a necessary step toward reaching our goals and prosperity.  We must fine our own unique style in online marketing.

Give it some thought… How can you be unique and stand apart from others in your niche?

Til Later,

Kathryn Griffiths

P.S.  I have experienced having both poor and great online mentors.  I appreciate those who have unselfishly shared the basics of the Internet Marketing business.  I, like many of you,  am in the process of finding my own voice.

Categories : Marketing


  1. You have hit the nail on the head for any training.

    One of my favorite rants is on parents that continually tell there kids what to do. This constant guidance leads to kids that are constantly telling someone else what to do. The basic foundation of how to do is missing. Kids learn by example – how are you being kind to others? How are you helping your neighbor? How are your handling your money? How are you completing cycles of action.

    What is my point?

    I just wanted to add to your great points on mentors. Make sure your mentor is doing what he is teaching.

    One of my favorites is Robert Plank. He has showed me exactly what he is doing and gave me the foundation to go off and do my own thing.

  2. Grace Hodgin says:

    I enjoy your articles immensely and try and drop in once a day to read the latest article. So glad I found you on twitter so I can keep updated.

  3. Kathy ~

    I think something else that’s worth mentioning is that we should come to expect a time when we will “outgrow” our mentors … and that’s a good thing!

    I’m walking side-by-side with you on that “voice-finding” path. 🙂


  4. Sue White says:

    I recently read a book called “Borrowing Brillance.” It was a little technical, but had some great ideas. It is ok to do your research and look at what other successful marekers in your niche are doing, but at some point you need to find your voice. Thanks for pointing this out in your post! Sue

  5. Suzie Cheel says:

    Love Melanie’s comment here: “we should come to expect a time when we will “outgrow” our mentors … and that’s a good thing!”
    As Shiela says make sure your mentor/s are walking their talk. Finding our own voice can be both empowering and as times scarry as we work it our

  6. Mentors can only take us so far, no matter how great they are. We emulate the good things then use our own authenticity to create our own way. I will always have a mentor but as I move up the food chain, I have to change mentors. It’s not a bad thing, it’s just a growing thing. Great post!

  7. Gosh, that’s one of the best posts I’ve read in a long time. I wish we could have a couple of days to sit on the porch and talk…

    Thanks so much for getting to know me and letting me know you. I feel very blessed by the friendship.


  8. Like you I have experienced a wide spectrum of training. Some of it confusing and most of it excellent. The excellent training was due to the mentor giving the time to explain and totally answer all questions. It is the teacher who sets the tone of instruction. As we learn and pick up the how of the mentor we will start out by emulating them but over time we will add our own stamp to our style of internet marketing business. Honesty and true passion for what we do is key.

  9. You have made some great points there! 🙂

    And boy, can I point you to sooo many copy-cat internet marketers online. There are so many it almost makes me sick to my stomach.

    Also there are so many mentors and teachers who don’t teach the fundamentals and they wonder why I’m not going back to them ever again.

    Thanks for the great points and opening up my mind 🙂


  10. Long ago I’d heard that mentorship inevitably led to divorce. The idea was that there would be hard feelings. As a person who doesn’t do confrontation, I thought, that’s it, no mentors for me.

    I’m no longer sure the hard feelings are necessary. Connie Ragen Green is a mentor for me, whether she knows it or not, and she shares exactly what, how and why she does what she does. What’s not to like?

    I’ll try to copycat enough for success, but I’m not too worried anyone will mistake us as twins. Thanks for this post!

  11. Hi Kathy,

    I too agree with this post. I’ve had quite a few mentors since I started the journey in January of 2005. One lady said that she would give me 1 hour for $500 but that it would change my life and catapult me on the path of success. I fell for it and it did end with bad feelings. She did refund half the money, but I learned absolutely nothing new. The people I’ve learned the most from have given their info freely in blogs, ezine articles and free teleseminars.

    However, I’ve also learned not to follow too many and I feel like there are lots of good people but I can easily get confused by too many approaches at once. At one point I had 20 blogs, 2 websites, an article directory site, Facebook and 2 Twitter accounts. I’m also a speaker and a therapist but it’s also focused on my nich of healing with music!

    Would love to read a post from you about choosing the gurus you will follow!

    Alice Cash, #blog30 and #mini7

  12. Gwen Tanner says:

    Hi Kathy,

    This is an excellent insight, and I love the examples you give of your own experience. I think that when you select a mentor, it’s a good idea to have a goal in mind – and that goal should not be to be like them. There are way too many copycats online – and its easy to spot them. To me you pick a few mentors, pick the ideas you like best from them, then synthesize those into your own style. Mentors can only teach you what they know and they don’t always know everything.

    Also, if you have a mentor, and you start expressing your own ideas and they tell you it’s wrong or it wont work – then run! Find another mentor who is more supportive.
    Thanks for sharing,

  13. Hi Kathy,

    Thanks for these thoughts. I am new enough at this that I am still learning the basics but I am also glad to be aware of the need to branch out and become and individual. It seems overwhelming sometimes but even a good mentor should be able to teach “how to fly free” so to speak.

    Thanks again.