Tag Archives: 2016

Life As An Entrepreneur: Road Trip 2016

Entrepreneur Road TripThe Entrepreneur Road Trip

Recently I spent three weeks driving across the United States and back to visit my clients and see the country. The result was quite satisfying, productive, and joyous and I thought I’d share the highlights of this trip with you.

My goal was to connect with as many people as possible along the way, and to work closely with them while I was in their home. Originally I had planned to fly to various cities and rent a car, but my decision to drive my own vehicle from California and back worked out much better. I covered just under six thousand miles in twenty-one days, visiting a dozen people and seventeen different states in the process.

Just as when you work on your online business from home, keeping a routine and being disciplined with your time is crucial to success. I’m used to writing and doing most of my other work in the morning, so whether I was staying in a hotel or with one of my clients this was simple and easy to accomplish. It’s been many years since I waited for inspiration to motivate my writing, so before I went to bed each evening I wrote down what I would be working on the following morning. I’d have to say I completed even more work than usual during this three week trip because I did not have many outside distractions to get in my way.

Even though I travel with my own Internet connection via a “hot spot” device, almost every hotel I stayed in had a decent connection, as did every one of the homes I stayed in with my clients. I had a laptop, iPad mini, and an iPhone with me throughout this trip.

What all of this has taught me is that we are even more capable of achieving our goals than we previously thought. If I was able to do more work than I had been doing at home while on this road trip, just imagine what I’ll be able to do from home going forward.

What is your business model? Are you working strictly from your home, or are you able to work from anywhere in the world where you have an internet connection? As you can see from my entrepreneur road trip, anything is possible.

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Productivity Challenge 2016 – Please Join Us!

Productivity Challenge 2016Productivity Challenge 2016

It’s that time of year again! Yes, I’m back for the sixth year with my Productivity Challenge, and this time I am anxious to bringing you the very best challenge you can imagine. Whether you are an aspiring online entrepreneur or a seasoned one you will find this year’s productivity challenge 2016 to be both meaningful and a worthwhile use of your time and efforts. This time it will be a 30 day challenge so that you will get the most from it during the next month.

Day 1 – Today I want you to make a list of your digital assets. By this I mean anything you have created out of electrons that is available on the internet for others to see, use, learn from, purchase, or recommend. For example, a list of my digital assets would include:

  • Books for sale on Amazon – I have more than a dozen non-fiction books (paperback and Kindle) I have either written or contributed to, as well as one in a different genre that was completely outsourced. All of these books bring me regular income, build my list, and increase my credibility and visibility in the field of online marketing.
  • Information Products – I have more than fifty of these currently and increase them regularly. During this challenge we will discuss how to quickly create products to add to your online inventory.
  • Online Training Courses – These are my favorite to create and teach. Because I was a classroom teacher for twenty years I’m always looking for ways to share my knowledge and expertise with others. This year I started my “Really Simple” branding and product/course line and committed to creating eight new online trainings during 2016.
  • Podcasts – I have two series, one where I interview others and one where I teach various aspects of online marketing. Both are available as subscriptions on iTunes.
  • Niche Sites – These are sites on various topics that recommend affiliate products.
  • My Mentor Programs – I offer an Online Marketing Incubator, as well as a Platinum Mastermind Mentor Program.
  • Live Events – Twice a year I bring people together for a three day live event on some aspect of online marketing. Most recently these have been branded as “Weekend Marketer Live!”
  • Affiliate Recommendations – I have thousands of links to affiliate offers within the content I publish regularly.
  • Your own affiliate program – I have about two hundred affiliates recommending my products, courses, and events regularly. Let me know if you are interested in becoming my affiliate.
  • Short reports, blogs, teleseminars, webinars, press releases, social media profiles, slide presentations, and more – This is content you have available online for your prospects to find, primarily by keyword but also through connections and relationships. This builds your credibility and visibility over time.

I’m not including physical products in this list, primarily because the Productivity Challenge 2016 is geared towards digital assets, with the exception of my books that are also available as paperback editions.

Are you surprised by how much or how little is on your list of digital assets? Commit to increasing this exponentially over the next thirty days.

Productivity Challenge 2016

Day 2 – What’s for sale? This is the magic question I ask my students regularly. You must fill your virtual shelves with digital inventory, and you own products, courses, programs, and events will always serve you most effectively. Think about what you currently have available for sale online, and what you would like to offer during the next month, six months, and within a year. How will you get from where you are today to closer to where you would like to be? Who and what do you need to make this possible? Are you as productive each day as you would like to be? Why or why not?

Day 3 – Are you working with a Mentor? I had a mentor during my first year online, and even though we were not the right fit for each other I saw the value in this concept. I went on to work with several mentors over the years, and currently I work with two – one is an online marketing expert and the other is a venture capitalist. What is your position on this topic?

Please join us with Productivity Challenge 2016 by leaving a comment below about anything I’ve discussed so far.

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Social Media Marketing – Your 2016 Update

Social Media MarketingSocial Media Marketing for 2016

A reader contacted me recently to discuss using social media to build her business. She says that she is an introvert and that she doesn’t feel comfortable spending so much time on the various social media sites in order to build her business quickly. Being an introvert myself, I feel like this is a topic that deserves further discussion.

Being an early adopter of social media, my motto from day one was to “get in, get out, and get back to work”. When Facebook opened its doors to the general public in 2008 (prior to this it was intended only for college students who had an email address issued by the institution they were attending) we were all faced with the dilemma of deciding how much information was enough and how to best connect with other people so as to promote our businesses.

Twitter came to life soon after, and this further complicated the issue in that we only had one hundred and forty characters in which to grab someone’s attention. In some ways this was a relief, as we could quickly announce where we were or what we were having for lunch and at least feel like we were a part of the conversation. Over time this gave way to being able to post pictures via a third part application such as Instagram, so that our followers could at least have a visual of what we were sharing through our carefully chosen words.

Fast forward to 2016, and social media has now gone through an even more sophisticated incarnation. Think of it as a way to syndicate your content in cyberspace. For example, the post you are reading here will already have made its way from an offline publication I write for monthly, to a half dozen social media sites before it ever hits the electronic format you are reading here on my blog.

Thinking of it in this way allows you the time to carefully put together your message in a way that will tell the story of who you are, what you have to offer, what’s new in your industry, and how it will benefit your target audience long before you hit “send” or “reply” on your computer. Add to this the ability for you to start and continue a dialog with your market and you have the perfect storm for no cost advertising and reputation building. When you think of social media in this way it changes your perspective quite a bit, I would imagine.

Get started by reviewing your profiles on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, and any other sites you wish to get involved with to promote and grow your business. Start slowly, making sure to have a picture that adequately represents you (actually looks like you!), and that your information is clear, concise, and up to date. Assume that people who connect with you will want to reach out and do so through your website, the telephone, and even in person.

Now spend some time lurking on each site to get an idea of what people are posting. Attempt to be an objective as possible when deciding if what you are observing is beneficial to business connection and growth or just downright silly. Make some notes about posts that make you want to know more about someone and their business. Ask questions like:

  • Would an image or a video be helpful here?
  • How can I best share my business values?
  • What do I want people to do after they connect with me?

Now jump in and make some posts and updates to your main profiles. Start slowly, giving some detailed information about something directly related to your business or your personal values. For example, you may wish to mention that you are at your Rotary Club meeting and listening to a speaker on a specific topic. Over time this will become more fun, as the people you are with are most likely also on social media and will like it when you include them in your posts and updates. This is an example of how we all help each other using social media marketing.

As you can see, spending time on social media can be a worthwhile venture. Set up your profiles, observe what others are doing, and then get started right away to share your message and your business with prospects near and far. What other questions do you have about social media marketing?

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