Saturday, January 30, 2021

8 Effective Ways to Grow An Email List


Build your list


If you’re just starting your blog or online business, then you are probably aware that one of the first things you want to do is build your email list. Your email list is extremely valuable, and you want to take very good care of it.


But first, you need to build it. And that takes consistent action, valuable content aimed at a particular group of people – or niche, and a compelling reason for people to join your list (your opt-in offers).


There are some creative things you can do to jumpstart your list-building efforts besides the typical regular blog post. Here are 10 ideas to help you get your list-building juices flowing.


1. Lead Magnets


Offering a lead magnet with every blog post is a great way to build your list. It requires a little extra work, but the payoff will be huge if your lead magnets are valuable to your readers.

A lead magnet is a giveaway that your readers will have to opt-in to your email list for in order to receive. It can be a checklist, printable, report, recipe or eBook.


2. Free Webinar


Offer a free webinar on a hot topic that your ideal audience would be interested in. Use Facebook and other social media to promote (make sure people opt-in to get access!). If you have some budget, run Facebook ads to drive traffic to your webinar opt-in page.


A free webinar can really grow your list if you partner with someone who has bigger reach than you currently have. Get creative. Who could you partner with to do a training on your topic?


3. Joint giveaway


A joint giveaway is great if you can partner with several other businesses or blogs who have a bigger, yet similar audience. Each business offers a free product or service as part of the giveaway “package”. With each of you promoting the giveaway on social media, you’ll gain more exposure to more of your potential tribe members.


4. Guest posting


Yes, guest posting is still a good idea, but only if you find blogs with lots of relevant traffic. Make sure you can include a link back to your site (preferably a special offer on an opt-in page).


5. Expert interviews


Step into your expert status by finding influential people to interview you on their blogs or podcastMake sure their audience is your ideal audience.


6. Conduct a 30-day challenge


Have people opt-in to a 30 (or 10 or 14 or 20) day challenge on a topic that fits your audience. What does your audience want to achieve in a short timeframe? Guide them through making it happen and watch your tribe grow. Make sure they opt-in to join the challenge and encourage sharing the challenge on social media.


7. Be a contributing writer


Offer up custom articles to larger media sites or blogs that have authority. Include a link to your opt-in page in your author bio (if allowed). Write something awesome.


8. Comment on other high-traffic blogs


Be part of the conversation happening on other, relevant, yet high traffic, blogs. Always use your website when registering to make a comment on a blog, and only comment if you can offer something of value to the conversation.

Monday, January 25, 2021

Getting Rid of a Failing Marketer’s Mindset

Online Marketing

Talk to most online entrepreneurs who have seen a great deal of success and they’ll all tell you one thing – mindset matters. In fact, it’s often the one thing that can make or break your success.

Self-doubt, worry, and other sabotaging emotions can prevent you from achieving your goals and building a profitable brand. So you want to not only learn about the technologies and selling strategies needed to cultivate your success, but also develop and nurture the mental fortitude to help you push through obstacles and attract affiliates and customers alike. 


internet marketing

Cleaning Out the Self-Limiting Beliefs

Before you can spruce up your mindset, you have to clean out the clutter. That means getting rid of any limiting beliefs that can harm your potential. It’s time for a clean slate. Once you have a clean slate, you’ll either feel fully capable of your abilities as an online entrepreneur – or you’ll gain the clarity to see that you’re not cut out for this business.

It may sound counter-intuitive to hear that you need to learn whether or not you’re right for this industry, but it’s better to discover that early on than to continue pursuing a career that keeps you mired in pain.

What you may not want to admit is that much of this pain you’re experiencing as you try and fail at online marketing is self-inflicted. Once you encounter anything bad, it tends to stick around and taint any positive possibilities in the future.

And most people don’t let go of stuff easily or quickly. They like to relive it and continue the dialogue in their heads with excuses and discussions about why something happened and what they could have done to change it.

All this does is keep your mindset mired in muck. It needs to be shelved so that you can move on with a clear head and focus on what you do want to see happen. This “dirty surface” in your mind is filled with emotions that aren’t helpful.

They include things like anger, shame, guilt, frustration and confusion. You might be mad that you got ripped off in the past, ashamed that others are grasping things you’re not, guilt at not bringing in enough income for your family, frustration at being overwhelmed and so on.

Identifying Outside Mental Distractions

It’s not just mental clutter related to your online marketing journey, either. If your mind is filled with negative thoughts about your relationships, your health, finances and other areas, then it’s also going to burden you on a day to day basis and create an obstacle between you and your ultimate success.

When you’re an entrepreneur working at home, life seeps in all around you. Even if you’re still working a 9-5 job, you know there are days when your mind is on your worries and not on your work tasks.

It works in reverse, too. When things are bad at work, you take it home to your family and it taints those relationships and the potential for creating wonderful, lasting memories.

You must be willing to say to yourself (because no one else matters in this equation): “ENOUGH ALREADY! I GET IT!”

Get fed up with the mess in your mind and give it a rest already. You’ve spent hours, weeks, months – maybe even years going over and over these negative emotions and it hasn’t helped, has it?

It’s only dragged you down further into a pit of despair and hopelessness. So it’s time to clean up your act and try something new – something more powerful. Something few people understand how to accomplish.

You’ve got to be tired of this mindset in order to rid yourself of it completely. You may have spent most of your life cocooned in negativity and pain, but the rest of your life is waiting for you – and you are the sole person in charge of determining how that will unfold.

Will you stay stuck? Or will you finally allow yourself to break free from the chains of misery and blame and guilt and embrace new possibilities?

Check Yourself for a Victim Mindset

You honestly may be one of those people who enjoy being mired in these emotions. You may not admit it, but day after day you have to ring the bell and tell everyone you know about the pain you’ve gone through, who it is you blame, what you should have done differently, and so on.

The victim mindset is attractive because in most cases, it removes any blame or personal responsibility. It also elicits lots of coddling and nurturing from your friends and family who chime in with encouraging comments to try to protect you from your pain.

Understand that your future is squeaky clean. It is filled with promise. Anything you want it to be. But you have a choice to make now. Do you walk into that future with a clean mindset and decorate your future with everything you dreamed of?

Or do you track in a muddied up past of pain and blame with you, so that your future begins to look just like the past? You have the same helplessness, the same worry and discontent, and the same problems that have plagued you year after year.

This is what happens if you try to adopt a new mindset without first cleaning up the old one. You have to face the past problems and mental poison and undo their effect on you before you usher in a new future.

It is not an easy process. That’s because we want to be right and we want people to understand our side of things. So we rehash it over and over again – getting nowhere, but feeling a temporary bit of satisfaction from voicing our displeasure.

The problem is, some of the very people who you want to “get it” will never get it – so you only have to be responsible for your own enlightenment. Not anyone else’s. Trying to fix other people’s mindset is a nightmare.

There are two issues we have to clean up. The first one is that others have wronged you. It may have been a vendor (you paid for a product and it didn’t fulfill your expectations), a family member (maybe they keep taking advantage of your kindness and you’ve had it), or a significant other (trouble brewing and you’re on the verge of a split), for example.

Most people harbor ill will on these issues for what is effectively a life sentence. If you’re able to address these issues and clean your mindset to start anew, then it’s something to be very proud of. 


3 Ways to Solve Your Most Pressing Problems

You have options to solve these problems. You can choose to forgive them. This may or may not be what you prefer to do, and it’s fine if you don’t want to. You might choose to set boundaries in place to protect you in the future and then forget about it – let it go. Or you might just shrug – acknowledge that it happened – and move on.

The alternative (which means hanging on to it and reopening the wound time and time again) is to drag it with you and waste even more time and energy on it. You’ll keep having to clean up the fallout from it and the mess it makes in your life.

The worst thing is, there will be no room for good things to happen. This is the saddest thing about having a mindset that is cluttered with past, painful damage. You can’t see anything with potential. You’re too busy dealing with the past.

The second issue you may have to clean up is that you wronged yourself. Nobody else did anything to you – you yourself made mistakes. Maybe you didn’t act right toward someone.

You’re ashamed at how much you foolishly spent on the wrong products and tools trying to get an online business off the ground. Or maybe it’s how much time you invested in this career with nothing to show for it.

Think about what you would tell a friend if they came to you with this problem. You’d most likely tell them to be proud of their attempts and to stop beating themselves up and fix the problem. The only time this should still be an issue is if you’re unwilling to stop the bad behavior.

As long as you’re willing to change, then you can embrace the future with a guilt-free existence. Forgive yourself and move on to see what your true potential in life – as an entrepreneur – is.

In order to clean up a cluttered mindset, you need to have a plan of action. It’s not enough to rush through and say, “Yeah, yeah, I forgive myself – let’s move on.”

It has to be genuine. So first, write it all down – the things that take up space in your head. Nothing is too big or too small, but write down the grievances you have in your mind right now. It might look something like this:

    • I’ve cut ties with a friend and I regret it.

    • I keep letting a family member take advantage of me financially.

    • I really hate a politician and I spend too much time ranting about it.

    • I focus on anger issues and wishful thinking like, “what if, I wish I had…”

    • I keep fuming when I come home to a messy house because nobody will help clean.

When you’re finished, mark each one as fixable, forgettable or forgivable.

Then make a plan for each issue. If you’re going to fix it – how and when will you fix it? Will you sit down with the kids and your spouse and tell them the messy house is wearing on you and give each person a chore chart that begins that day?

Will you forget it – literally shrug and be done with it and consider it ridiculous to waste your life on, like wishful thinking that you had 3 yachts and 5 Lamborghinis like some celebrity or marketing guru?

Will you forget about spending 8 hours a day getting riled up about everyone else’s opinions on social issues or politics, when all that really matters is how you yourself vote at the ballot box and how you live your life?

Or will you choose forgiveness – forgive yourself ceremonially and move into a productive future? Or forgive someone else and set boundaries in place so that you can’t allow yourself to be hurt in the future?

Prepare for the Change to Be Uncomfortable at First

You have to be prepared for backlash about how you handle things, too. Someone may not like you putting boundaries in place. They may try to question your decision to forgive and/or forget something.

All that matters is what you and your gut feel is right for you. The other people aren’t living your life – you are. Don’t be swayed by guilt or shame from others. Make your decision and be at peace and be empowered by it.

You have to be honest, too. You might look back on something – some situation you reacted to – and realize that maybe you overreacted to it – harbored a little too much ill will.

Sometimes things will be “fixable” but it might take longer than a quick “thought session” can accommodate. This is okay. As long as you have (and are working) a plan for this thing, it won’t have the same burdensome impact in your mind as it would if you were to simply ignore it and let it fester unresolved.

Without a plan in place, you’re making sure that you usher in the coming weeks and months with the same mental clutter you’ve suffered from in the past. Embrace the personal power you have to start fresh and then make it happen.

Identifying issues that are serving as obstacles to your future earnings is the first step in bringing your ideas to fruition without the mental clutter damaging your ability to succeed.

Most people drag themselves across the finish line with all of this mental baggage in tow, never fully realizing their potential. It’s like finally being able to buy a brand new house, yet bringing all kinds of clutter with you so that when you look around, it’s not quite as amazing as it could have been.

You want a clean slate. A fresh start. In order to be able to be creative and focus on your online efforts, there can’t be many (or even one) thing pulling your attention and weighing heavily on your mind.

You need to be able to sit down and actively find ways to serve your customers and clients fully. If they’re only getting a small portion of what you’re capable of sharing, then you’re cheating them out of great things and cheating yourself, too.

When you want to shift from the mindset of a constantly failing marketer to someone who visualizes success and implements it with ease, you have to be able to pinpoint the elements holding you back.

But understand that identifying them is only half the battle. If you’re not willing and able to make changes about them, then you will continue to sit on the sidelines as other, more dedicated marketers do the hard work instead.

You have it in you, if you’re willing to try. The discomfort you feel initially being honest and making changes will subside and in fact, strengthen your resolve as you see positive results materialize.

Sunday, January 17, 2021

7 Tips for Making an Effective Website for Your Freelance Business

Freelance Business


If you are starting a home-based freelance business or trying to grow an existing service-based business, then having a quality website is going to be an important piece of your marketing plan.


These days, a quality website doesn’t have to cost you thousands of dollars. You can start by setting up a WordPress site and choosing a quality theme to showcase your brand.


Keep in mind that your website should be generating leads for you. Putting up a low-quality site with the wrong messaging could hurting your business more than helping it.


Here are the seven elements to help make your website appealing to potential customers.


1. Say what you do and who you do it for, in a clear, concise way


Make sure that what you do is clear on the homepage. For example, “Virtual Assistant Services for Busy Entrepreneurs” is a clear, concise tagline that states exactly what you do and who your ideal client is.


If you offer services to a specific niche, such as writers or real estate agents or coaches, be sure and state that loud and clear on your homepage.


For example, you could use, “Virtual assistant services for busy coaches” or “Social media management for busy real estate agents”. 


2. State the benefits first and foremost


Try to stay away from getting too wordy about what you do on your homepage (or any page!). Focus on the benefits of working with you

Instead of, “I offer social media and blogging services using top notch tools”, use something more benefit-focused such as, “My VA services can give you back hours in your day so you can focus on growing your business and making more money. Leave the social media posting and blogging to me!”


See the difference? Always focus on the benefits your new client will receive over the specifics of your services. You can focus on the specifics on your services page.


3. Have a clear call to action


On your homepage, be sure and include a call to action for your potential client. 


It can be a “Contact Me” button or a “Click here to find out more” link…just something to lead them towards learning more about you and an easy way to contact you.


4. Have an F.A.Q. page


This is of course optional for your site but having a Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) page, is always a good idea. It’s helpful for potential clients who may have questions that can be addressed right on your website.


If you are providing answers to common questions without a potential client having to reach out to you to ask them, then you’re already saving them time, which they will appreciate.


5. Include a picture of you


Have a picture of you on your website to help your potential clients feel like they know you before they even meet you. 


It doesn’t have to be a professional picture, but make sure it is a good quality photo. 


6. Testimonials


If you have done any work for anyone using your services, even if you did it as a favor for a friend, get a testimonial.


Testimonials are great social proof that you are good at what you do! Even if you have 2-3 that’s a great start. If you can get a picture of the person that is giving the testimonial, even better.


7. Keep it simple


Try not to overthink your website or get overwhelmed by it. The main goal is to get the benefits and facts up and you’ll be ready to go.


Keep it simple and follow these tips to help showcase your business in the best light online.

Wednesday, January 13, 2021

5 Beautiful Benefits of Hosting a 5-Day Challenge


Lead Generation

5 Beautiful Benefits of Hosting a 5-Day Challenge


Mandy was a health and wellness coach who specialized in working with postpartum women who wanted to return to their previous fitness level. She loved helping her virtual clients change their lives, but she often found herself frustrated because she was constantly looking for new clients.

She wanted a way that she could regularly fill her coaching classes without needing to constantly market them. That’s when Mandy’s friend—who was an online marketer—suggested hosting a 5-day challenge.

If you’re not familiar with the concept, a 5-day challenge is a challenge where you invite participants to accomplish a goal over the course of five days. For example, a popular home organization coach might host a 5-Days to Clutter Free Closets Challenge.

Each day during the challenge, the host will share tips and advice on how to clear out those household closet. At the end of each day’s lesson, she shares a quick homework assignment and invites her participants back to her Facebook group where they can share pictures of their progress.

After the challenge, the coach invites her participants to sign up to work with her virtually. This means she has a convenient sales funnel of new clients that are continually joining her business.

Now, hosting a 5-Day challenge might sound like a lot of work. But once you set it up the first time, you can run it again and again. The only changes will be that you stop in and interact with a new round of participants on Facebook.

Besides helping you find new clients, here are five more beautiful benefits of hosting a 5-day challenge for your community.


Grow Your Mailing List

A mailing list is a valuable asset for an online business owner. That’s because email has a return on investment of $38 to every $1 spent (HubSpot). Not only that but you own the rights to your email address.

When you build your business around a social media platform, you don’t own the contact information for your followers. The platform does. This means that if you get mistakenly marked as a spammer and your account is deleted, you have no more access to your followers. All those hours you spent pouring into your social media account are gone.

Unless you were working diligently to build an email list. Then you can still keep in touch with your followers and fans. You can continue to do business as usual without having to worry about filling your client funnel.


Re-Engage Your Subscribers

You might be thinking that a 5-day challenge sounds lovely. But your email list might be dead or close to dying. You rarely send out messages and when you do, you get a lot of unsubscribes and more than a few confused replies.

A 5-Day challenge can be the perfect way to re-engage your subscribers. Not only is this free for them but it gives them a chance to interact with your brand again, reminding them of who you are and why they value your products or services.

Of course, not every email subscriber will necessarily want to receive messages from you about the 5-day challenge you have coming up. What you can do is email your main list. Let subscribers know that if they don’t want to receive messages on this topic, they can opt out.

Then use your mailing service’s tagging feature to automatically tag those users as “not interested in (challenge)”. When you go to message your subscribers in the future, you’ll select the option to exclude subscribers with that particular tag.


Build Your Facebook Community

Another advantage of this approach is that you can build your Facebook community. While you never want to rely exclusively on social media to find your clients, you can use it to build a community of like-minded clients who love working with you.

You can do this by encouraging your subscribers to share their progress on your social media group. It might be wise to start a special challenge related hashtag so you other participants can easily follow threads that are related to this topic. For example, if you’re hosting a Clutter Free Closet Challenge then your hashtag could be: #closetchallenge or #clutterfreecloset or #nocluttercloset.

As your participants post, relationships within your community will begin to form. They’ll ask questions, cheer each other on, and share tips or advice. You might even find some of this inspires you to create more content for your members!

Another benefit of doing this is that members of your Facebook community might see the challenge and join your mailing list. This allows you to grow your subscriber base even more, resulting in more potential clients.


Turn Your Community into Action Takers

An online community is only as strong as its action takers. If you have a community filled with people who never act on your advice and recommendations, then you have a dead community. It’s not truly growing, and it needs to be pruned.

You can use the 5-day challenge as the opportunity to look at how many subscribers you have and if they’re truly engaging with you and your business. If not, you may want to consider pruning them.

Members that are never active in your Facebook group or subscribers who are never opening your messages are taking up valuable space. Consider creating a guideline for yourself such as “subscribers who have not opened an email for 6 months are deleted”.

At first, deleting members who aren’t engaged with your brand might feel scary. But keep in mind that these people are not truly interested in what you’re offering. If they were, they would be taking action by reading your messages, replying to you, or engaging in the Facebook community you’re building.

When you’re done pruning, you’ll be left with fewer people, but it will be a more valuable list of subscribers and members since you’ll only have the action takers. These are your true fans and the people you really want to serve!


Profit from Additional Offers

While you might host your 5-day challenge for free, that doesn’t mean you can’t profit it from it. From the very beginning of your challenge, you need to be seeding in opportunities for clients to make purchases that will get you profits.

How you include these opportunities is up to you. But one good idea is to add affiliate offers where relevant to your challenge. For example, during your closet challenge, you reference a closet organizer. Don’t just mention it. Link to your favorite one on Amazon or another site.

If a tangible item isn’t appropriate, suggest a digital one. For example, if you’re doing a 5-day digital scrapbooking challenge, affiliate link to your favorite site that sells scrapbook paper bundles.

The important thing with these suggestions is to pick items that you know are of good quality and that will be helpful to your audience. If you do this, they won’t get angry at your recommendations. They’ll thank you for them!


Host a Challenge Today

It doesn’t have to be difficult to host a challenge. Once you have a framework, it’s easy and fun. In fact, you can run your challenge again and again over the course of several years if you want.

Not only is this enjoyable and profitable for your business, it serves your community, too. That’s a win-win-win!

Saturday, January 9, 2021

5 Common Mistakes New Bloggers Make


Starting A Blog

Starting a blog


Starting a new blog is exciting but can also be daunting at the same time.

Setting up a website can feel completely overwhelming, and it often takes a lot of trial and error. The good news is nothing is written in stone. You can always fix, tweak, change and evolve as your blog grows.

To help you get started on the right foot, below are some common mistakes to avoid that new bloggers make when setting up their website.

These mistakes aren’t anything “bad”, they are simply things that you may overlook, or not even be aware of, when getting started.

And while content is king, avoiding these simple “behind the scenes” newbie mistakes can help give your blog growth a “boost” without too much extra effort.


Mistake #1: Using a poorly made theme 


Not all WordPress themes are created equal, but with the millions of theme options available, how do you know which ones are good and which aren’t? And BTY i use Blogger :)

Unless you’re a coder, it’s nearly impossible to know!

Invest a little money and purchase a premium theme. Not all free themes are bad, but a premium (paid) theme will better your chances of having a solid foundation for your blog.


Mistake #2: Not using an SEO plug-in


You don’t have to be an SEO expert to apply good SEO practices to your site.

It’s very easy to optimize your blog for the search engines by simply installing a free plugin such as Yoast through your WordPress dashboard.

With either of these plugins, you can enter keywords and descriptions for each blog post right on the blog post edit page – giving the search engines lots of good reasons to rank your pages easily!


Mistake #3: Not collecting email addresses


You may be thinking, “I don’t need to collect email addresses, I’m just blogging!”.

That may be true if you never plan to monetize your site, :( and who here doesn't like money, but if you have dreams of growing an online business or selling a product down the line, then you want to start collecting those email addresses now!

Your list will grow faster if you can offer a fun and valuable freebie when someone subscribes. This is often called a “lead magnet”. 

Your lead magnet could be a free downloadable printable, a free eBook, or anything else that would provide value to your readers. Delight them with something amazing!

You can always check out our List Building Label for on building your list.


Mistake #4: Using poor images – or no images


Good images can grow your site!

Whether you have a food blog, craft blog, organizing blog or parenting blog, a nice image with each blog post can really add value for your readers and create loyal followers.

Not to mention you can use your images to gain traffic to your blog through Pinterest, Facebook and Instagram.

Even if your image is a simple graphic with the title of your blog post, try to use some sort of visual with every post to add interest to your content.

You can create nice-looking graphic images at for free!


Mistake #5: Letting your blog sit idle


This is definitely one of the most common mistakes new bloggers make...lack of consistency. Trust me i am guilty of this as well sad but true.

It can be hard to get a new blog off the ground when you feel like no one is reading but keeping that regular content flowing is critical to growing your blog.

Create an editorial strategy and schedule and stick to it. Consistency, even if it’s only once a week, is better than blogging every day for a week, and then not adding anything new for a month.

Give your readers a reliable schedule so they have a reason to come back.

Avoid these (very common) mistakes above and you are already ahead of the blogging game with a solid foundation.

Sunday, January 3, 2021

How to Start an E-commerce Business

How to start an e-commerce business


It’s a great time to start an e-commerce business. More and more people are shopping online and that will continue to be the case for years to come.


The tools that are available to set up your store are getting easier to use and cheaper, making e-commerce a great business model to consider.


Start with Your Idea


While you might have a great idea and the talent to put it into action, you’ll want to make sure that you’ve considered exactly how your product or service fills a gap in the market. Supply and demand play a huge role in determining the success of all businesses.


Who is your ideal customer? Where do they hang out online? How does your product solve a problem for them? How can you stand out among the competition?


Look at Your Competitors


Every business has competitors, and so will yours. Looking at your competitors can give you invaluable information on what kind of product or service is selling best in your industry and what kind of options people are looking for. Where there are gaps in your competitors’ product offerings, there are opportunities for you to fill those gaps.


You’ll also be able to get a jump start on different angles of your business such as your target audience and where to market your product and service. You can learn from the success of your competitors just as you can learn from their mistakes.


You’ll also want to outline how you are different from each of your competitors. What makes you better or different than the options already on the market? Understanding the way that you are filling a need in the industry that isn’t being currently met is the main way that you can make your business successful.


Set up a Website


As an e-commerce business owner, your website is the face of your business. It’s critical that you create an online platform that is easy to use, well designed, and effectively conveys your product or service offerings to both Google and potential customers. 


Thankfully, the tools today make setting up an e-commerce business so easy! Sites like Etsy make setting up a shop super easy and very inexpensive. By setting up your storefront on Etsy, you can take advantage of the millions of shoppers searching for products on the platform.


If you'd rather set up your own online store, tools like Shopify or WooCommerce will help make the technical side of online business not so daunting.


Find Your Audience


To effectively market your product, you’ll need to make sure that you meet your audience where they live and to do that, you’ll need to find where they’re spending time on the internet.


You’ll want to make sure that your marketing includes multiple platforms, from paid ads to search engine marketing to social media marketing.


Build Your Brand


Regardless of how long you’ve been in business, you’ll want to make sure that you are always continuing to build your brand. Your core values should feed into everything that your business does, and as you continue to establish your business online, your brand should get stronger. 


Building a successful e-commerce brand is a major undertaking but it’s by no means impossible.