Are you still waiting for that success to come? Is it being elusive? Sometimes it feels difficult to achieve success but guess what? It doesn’t mean it’s an impossible dream. Even the best ones had to to their fair share of waiting. Top marketers share their success stories below!

Believe it or not they recall the time they had to wait for a long time for success to come. Don’t worry if it’s you’re not there yet. Read on how these online marketers had to wait and achieve success finally! See also what lessons you can learn so you can achieve success as well!

Ups and downs is a part of this business. In this journey you have to face times when you work day and night but it doesn’t work. But, Hard work is never in vain and you will definitely get the expected results if you have worked according to them. I haven’t experienced such situation by myself till yet. – Umair Akram

Well, the blog was very much like that. In 2005, there were very few travel blogs out there. And those that there were, they were doing very different things to me.  I’d probably been blogging for three years or so before I started to see any significant rewards for my efforts. – Paul Johnson

I would have to refer back to my first experience with online marketing.  That was my first gamble into this industry and I didn’t know if it would pay off or not.  So I had to put in a lot of effort to try and get it to work not knowing if it would pay off.  Even though the reward wasn’t huge at first, I attribute much of my success to that first win in the beginning.  It wasn’t guaranteed but I put in the effort, stuck with it, and things worked out. – Chris Dreyer

We just finished a project that had some significant technical challenges, so that required some substantial effort up-front. The client knew they were taking a bit of a risk.

There were a lot of technical challenges that needed to be cleaned up, and we weren’t sure exactly what the impact would be on organic search: if it would be immediate or if it would take a while. And actually, this time, it was immediate. We finished up and by the end of the second month we saw a huge jump in rankings and traffic.

That doesn’t always happen, of course. Most projects need daily changes and updates, and when we look back at the end of a year, we see big improvements. There is measurable growth each month, but by the time we can compare year-over-year, the total traffic or business impact becomes really significant.

That’s what SEO really is. It’s the ability to snowball growth and continue to build traffic over time. Most projects are slow, but substantially impactful over time. – Nate Dame

Haha, running a start up, hopefully. – Niklas Laninge

I don’t think about upfront time and how long it takes to pay off. I do the things I do because I love what I do. Some people say that it takes years to build up a network like mine, but it never felt like I was putting in work for a pay off.

I’ve loved the people I’ve met and worked with, and truly enjoy staying in touch with them. Overtime there’s the payoff of rich relationships which has certainly helped me, because I value all of their opinions.

Learning is the same way. I hope that I always remain a student of marketing, business, people and life itself. – Carla Johnson

I think that’s been the case with any startup venture that I’ve launched. You put in a ton of effort and hours in the beginning without getting paid a dime. You have no idea if it will work or not, but you are just putting all your faith and belief in yourself and your own ideas.

There has been many times where I’ve invested 4-6 months of time in a project and the return from it was absolutely zero, I just got the experience and knowledge. Other times, I’ve been able to turn a project into a massive success within just a few months. – Jeet Banerjee

This happens a lot in building relationships with influencers. I worked for a long time to build a relationship with Rand Fishkin. I’d been working on a regular basis to build a relationship with him, and we’d started to interact with him, but hadn’t gotten to the point where he knew who I was, but hadn’t yet begun to share my content.

Then after many months, of trying to do that, I saw this post from Rand: Free Linkbait Idea on Web Analytics in November 2006. If you look at this post, Rand is throwing out an idea for someone to do a study that will yield a huge amount of traffic and links.

If you go to the post and sort the links based on oldest to newest, you’ll see that I was the first comment, and here is what I wrote: “You have a volunteer. Sent you an email about it. Eric”.

I then followed through and executed the study. I published that report in August 2007 the Web Analytics Shootout.

So that was great. Rand helped share the report, as he said he would and started to pay more attention to me after that. However, the real payoff came in December 2008. At SES Chicago, Stephan Spencer approached me about joining together with him, Rand, and Jessie Stricchiola in authoring The Art of SEO.

This led me to be a co-author of that book, which published its first edition in October 2009, and now it’s on its 3rd edition as of October 2015. This was a huge lift in visibility for me, and patience in building the relationship and waiting for the benefits was essential to success. – Eric Enge

Oh my. With me SEO 2.0 ebook. I started writing it and ran out of money faster than I thought so I had to take on client work again and write it in my free time. It’s been years! It’s still not published. – Tadeusz Szewczyk

This is an interesting question. I think everything I do is putting in significant effort which I will pay off down the line. Probably the most obvious examples are my book, The Social Golf Course and my podcast, The Defining Success Podcast.

Both required an immense amount of upfront effort which paid and are still paying dividends. As a business owner, we’re constantly doing things to grow our businesses which don’t reap tangible benefits immediately. – Zeb Welborn

Starting any blog. – Mary Green

Uh, yes. The first 10 years building my business! They say it takes 10 years to have overnight success and that is so true! Last year was our 10th year and it was our best in history.

Not our best revenue year, but our best profitable year…by far. It also was the year we finally figured out how to make money online. Now I can look forward to the next 10 years of profitability and hockey stick growth. – Gini Dietrich

I think blogging in general fits into this category. Many people who start a blog and website give up at the six month mark when they’re not seeing the results they want to. Keep going – give yourself at least two years to make significant progress and treat yourself like a client by giving yourself deadlines and following through on them. I have a great post here about how actively blogging for a year aided in my business’ success. – Gina Horkey

Starting a business and any other subsequent businesses since. You’ve been tasked with redesigning the company’s brand strategy from the ground up. Walk us through your process. Majority of the time will be spent getting to know the client, visit their office, meet staff and understand their business. What are their goals, challenges, KPIs? Try to sit in on some meetings, after work events, and pick up on their vibe/culture. A lot of this can even be accomplished remotely. The rest is pretty typical. Stylesheets, mockups, etc. – Adam Steele

Probably on some Google penalty recovery sites you work for hours and hours to rebuild a sites link profile, content and fix technical issues and it can take months for Google (example recovery project attached to show you time it can take). – James Norquay

The first 3 years of Nifty were like that. I hustled. I went to events. I wrote a lot. I tried to become known and I caught some very lucky breaks. But, the first few years 12-14 hour days were the norm. That is a heavy price to pay for your body and mind. – John McElborough

Yes, I had one very big project. It was a person who lives in the US and was born in Ukraine. His site was affected by Penguin and it used to bring him millions of dollars every year.

After a Penguin penalty, the site almost dead. I think I manually reviewed thousands of backlinks and added them to disavow file.

After the next algorithm update, some positions were recovered and the website started to bring in money again. Sadly, it is still not as effective as previously before it was hit with the penalty. – Evgeniy Garkaviy

I’d safely say that four years of slugging it out as a freelance writer to become a Managing Editor qualifies as ‘putting in significant effort’ to get success. – Matthew Yeoman

I always find it more gratifying when a prospect doesn’t turn into my client right away. I know, it’s kinda twisted. As Gary Vaynerchuck would put it, give more ‘jabs’ than right hooks. So in most of my dealings, I would put in more efforts to be of help first before asking people to hire me or get my services. The ‘right hooks’ may or may not always come, but it’s always worth the wait. – Rey Baguio

Public relations. The reality is publications still take forever to make decisions and even when they do seeing the printed success is at least 6 months out. Websites and applications are pretty much the same. I see both completed in my own head so far in advance that they always feel “behind” to me. – Christi Tasker

It took me a long time to be successful at blogging — by success I meant reaching my monthly income goal of at least P15,000 — which I achieved after around 14 months. I guess what really got me through was my passion for the niche that I had. When people started finding value with what I was writing, income opportunities began presenting itself. – Fitz Gerard Villafuerte

Mainly with any content based website you are going to have to wait for the site to grow and rank organically. Unless you have a lot of money to put behind the site in terms of marketing, content creation and SEO is a very long and drawn out process. On the flip side, it’s a great model because once it’s up and running, you get a good amount of traffic and revenue for free. – Zac Johnson

I’ve always been pretty good at balancing doing short term impact things to bring in immediate work with things with a longer term payoff. So blogging and building up my web presence until I was relatively well known took a good while, but I was never waiting: I always had other activities that were getting me in front of clients. – Ian Brodie

In December 2014 I decided to run a virtual summit on WordPress. I spent three months of recording interviews, building the website, running promotions, and managing the event itself. Luckily my friend Navid helped me with it, but running this event took 4 months of work before I could reap the benefits. – Jan Koch

I started out with blogging, and it was honestly years before I started seeing any real reward for my efforts. If I were rational I would have quit after a year when I still wasn’t making any money, but I knew other people were succeeding with blogging, so I knew I had the potential to as well. I’m very glad I’ve stuck with it, because blogging has changed my life more than I had ever imagined possible. – James McAllister

My first company, Mirabilis Media, was built in 9 years. The first 3 years were just hustling. – Dragos Roua

Back when I started major reliance was on Google’s AdSense program for our revenues. In December 2011 my AdSense account got deactivated and this fuelled a period of intense doubt and almost no earnings. I didn’t give up on blogging and reappealed against the AdSense ban for more than 18+ times.

In the period of 1.5 years I kept on experimenting and then I had started freelancing and working for others in order to have a significant income source apart from Ad revenues!

Then after 1.5 years and constant reappeals I got my AdSense back and since then I never sat idle. – Aditya Nath Jha

It seems like I wait a long time for just about everything. Some of that is the time it takes for things to happen. And some of that is just the impatience that most people in business are familiar with.

I think one of the most dangerous myths in business is that success happens quickly. I know there are people who are better at getting results faster than others, but most of us have to do the same things every day for a while before we start to see results.

I have had rides sell in 30 minutes and I have had others that took more than a year. I have had two examples with my coaching business.

It took the better part of a year to organize an online presentation with the student blog society at Kent University. And it took over a year I think for a magazine article that featured me in New York Magazine.

I like to say that patience isn’t the lack of wanting things, it’s the ability to wait with peace. – Maxwell Ivey

I would say we experienced this with a dentist I worked with who had a really bad history with working with SEO companies who built him lots of bad backlinks which resulted in several penalties. It took a lot of effort and time to gain back all the ranking he lost.  It never pays long-term to break Google’s rules. – Joy Hawkins

Isn’t everything like that? Building an audience is like that. You start a site, you start publishing the best content you can, you start going out there and trying to interact and engage with an audience. You most probably won’t see any big results in the first 5-6-7-8 months, but slowly the effort you’ve put in will start showing in visitor numbers, your influence and more. – Marko Saric