You probably already know that Nathan started his online business while on deployment in Afghanistan - it's one of many things I admire about him.
Bootstrapping is one of those American phrases you hear all the time online. Wikipedia describes it as "A self sustaining process that proceeds without external help." In other words, and relating it to a business start up, it means doing it yourself and not investing lots of money to do so. It's how 95% of bloggers start their businesses. read more »
I wrote a post last week about Eben Pagan and how he generated $29 Million turnover from his home office last year. That post linked to the first video from him in a series which will eventually lead to a product launch of some kind. I suggested that it would be a good learning experience for all of us to watch the videos, get onto his launch email list, and see how he manages the whole thing. Apart from anything else, the content in these videos is amazing!
Do you remember the first time you sold a product on a website via an affiliate program? That amazing feeling when the email pops in to say "You've made a sale!"?
It's fantastic, isn't it? What happened next? I'd wager you went straight to the affiliate page to check your commission was showing and to see when you were going to get the money.
And this is where so many affiliate programs go wrong! read more »
We all know there are super marketers who earn an absolute fortune. I don't class myself as an internet marketer, but I sure do my best to learn from some of their skills and techniques and apply it to my business.
One I have always respected is Eben Pagan. Last year his business turned over $29 Million. If we can't learn a thing or two from him, then we might as well give up now. He's even interviewed one of my heroes, Sir Richard Branson.
He's produced a video which shows how he started the business, how he grew it, and he also takes you behind the scenes of his super cool new home office. read more »
Since we launched The Beyond Blogging book, Nathan and I have had the chance to work with some pretty interesting people - in the closed Beyond Blogging Project, and also with a number of private clients.
This has meant that we're building up a stack of really good quality training material for anyone who is interested in creating a genuine business, using a blog as the platform.
Rather than keep everything for the closed group and private clients, we've decided to release some of the highlights each month to a wider audience. read more »
I've recently been offered the chance to buy a small business. It's a coffee shop / sandwich bar / free wi-fi place, and I met with the owners last week. The background to how this came about, and what I plan to do about it aren't relevant to this post, but if you're subscribed to my newsletter, I'll let you know all about it in the next one. You can join the community using the form to your right.
Of course, I wanted lots of information to enable me to make an informed decision, so we had a meeting for them to talk me through what the business is currently doing. Imagine this scenario, if you will:
"The business is doing really well - we get an average of 56 customers per day, and 4 or 5 pleasant comments in our guest book. We're focusing really hard on increasing those daily customers to 70, and we've embarked on a program designed to get more and more people to write in the guestbook." read more »
I did some consultancy work not long ago with a company that sells photocopiers. It was a small business, with the owner (who was also a salesman) two administrators and three other sales guys. The most successful one was an interesting guy called Dave. Old for a salesman (close to 50) he loves his job, and has resisted promotion for years. He's good at what he does, and he earns a serious amount of money, so his attitude has been "Why change?" Why, indeed?
I learnt a powerful lesson from him. He's totally single minded about what he does, and studiously avoids anything that distracts him from what he calls "The core principles" of his job.
He boils them down to: read more »
In yesterday's post I caused some consternation by giving you the brutal truth about how many E Books you will really sell.
The bottom line is that you'll get a decent flurry from your email list - and if you don't have a proper email list you can send autoresponders to, then you need one. Aweber (aff) currently has an offer where you can try the service for a month for $1, so go and check it out now. read more »
You're busy working on your first E Book, and you can't wait to bring it to market. Like most first timers, you're not going to have an affiliate scheme - you plan to go it alone and save the commission in order to keep the price sensible.
Here's what will happen:
You'll put it on sale to your email list first, as they're your real fans. If you're good, and you've really given them valuable extra stuff over the last few months, 15% of them will buy. If you just send your list an occasional email with blog updates, 10% will buy.
How many people have you got on your list? 500? So you'll sell 75 books in the first few days. Not bad, huh?
What ever you call it (some call it a shop) somewhere on your blog, you'll have a sales page for your E Book. The page where people can actually hit a button that says "Buy!" or "Add to cart." How many you sell from there is directly proportional to how much traffic you get to that page. If you've written awesome sales copy, 3% may buy. If it's average, then 1% will buy.
How many people can you get to visit that page each week? For a guide, pick a decent post that's over a month old. Hell, be an optimist, and pick your very best post - the one that gets the most visits. Now find out how many people visit that each week. read more »
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"Mike's Life is where you can stay current with the life, thoughts, successes and failures of Mike Cliffe-Jones. Never knowingly ordinary, Mike shares as much as possible about his work as a marketer and in business, as well as his enviable lifestyle on and in the oceans around The Canary Islands."