5 Things You Must Consider When Starting Your Own Business

Starting your own business may involve a lot of headaches. There’s having to find office space, getting permits, hiring people, and more. Aside from those, you also need a business plan. In what direction do you want the business to go? How much money would you like to make five, ten, or so years from now? Those are very important questions to ask, but since you’re still in the early phases of your business, you should also seriously consider these five things.

1. What sector will you be in?

Let’s say you want to be in IT (information technology). It’s a huge, cutthroat industry, with lots of companies, both big and small, competing for market share. It’s a lot tougher for you as someone just starting if you want to jump into the industry as well. So then, you first have to find your niche. What sort of products or services will you specialise in? What can you offer that your competitors don’t have? Don’t just go with the flow. Be unique and offer something really valuable to your potential customers. Ideally it’s something they’re looking for that your competitors just can’t offer them. That way, your business will stand out above the rest!

2. How much will you invest?

Of course, as a business, you need capital to turn your business ideas into a reality. If you don’t pour in the capital, your home business idea will be nothing but a big flop. One important thing to know is how much money your business needs to both begin and maintain itself.

Where would you get the money? You could use your savings, if you have a lot. If not, you could find some business partners and ask them for an investment. Or, you could take out a loan from a bank or a reputable finance group. You could even try crowdfunding like many startup owners do these days. Last but not the least, you can seek professional advice from financial planners, business experts, or business coaches.

3. Who will operate the business?

Managing your small business by yourself is never an easy task. It’s even less easy when your company is already expanding. One way or another, you will need to enlist the help of well-trained people to help run your business. Their knowledge and skills will be great assets to your expanding small business, helping it grow further.

4. When do you expect to make money?

Certainly you would want to make money at some point. How could any business owner not want to make money? With that in mind, it’s good to set a target date for recovering your capital and earning profit. And if you have a goal, you need an action plan. Let’s say you want to recover capital after one year of starting your home business. What actions will you take to achieve that goal?

5. Do you have what it takes to build your own business?

Running your own small business requires a lot of sacrifices on your part. And there’s even the chance that your business idea won’t work out. That’s something you have to contend with. You can’t avoid running into a few (or many) obstacles along the way. But if you’re convinced that running a business is your road to financial freedom, then go on ahead! By all means, do your best!

You may find these questions far too serious to think about, but one way or another you have to answer them. Starting your own business is a major life decision, and as with any major life decision, you have to be absolutely sure before you say yes. The more you know what you need to do to succeed, the more likely you will succeed. Remember that these questions are not here to discourage you from starting a business. Rather, they serve to prepare you for the journey ahead. So go ahead and start your business, for it may change your life forever!

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10 Easy Ways You Need To Know To Grow A Business

How many months have you been investing in your business to see no results?

Here’s the interesting thing I’ve learned from being in business and coaching other small businesses to grow.

All the marketing and sales strategies work… in their own time.

Chances are that you have worked hard and doing the ‘right’ things to grow your business. You just have focused on the big sexy strategies that bring in business in the long-term, but have you hearing crickets in the short-term.

If that’s you, know this – you aren’t alone. In fact 85% of the businesses I work with are doing the same. If they can change things around and see results in the next 90 days – you can too. Here are the top 10 ways you can grow a business easily and quickly.

1. Balance out your marketing mix to include short-term (results in 90 days), medium (results in 90-180 days) and long-term (results in 180+ days).

2. Be more active in your marketing. If you wait for your phone to ring, you need to do more marketing that boosts your “Know, Like & Trust Factor”. The fastest way is through being were your clients are and talking to them. If you need to grow your business, don’t wait for business to come to you!

3. Build Out Your Circle of Influence. Have you ever played the game ’6 degrees of Kevin Bacon’? Think of the people who through the course of their work touch your ideal client. Seek out partnerships and alliances with those businesses who best represent how you like to do business. Developing relationships with a few key people is a quick path to cash

4. Ask Your Clients To Buy Again. It’s easy to focus on getting new clients and new projects in the door, but your existing clients are more profitable. Reach out to any previous client who hasn’t purchased in the last 6 months or a year. Let them know how valuable they have been to you and see if there is anything you can do for them now.

5. Ask Your Clients For Referrals. If you love your clients, then you’ll probably love their referrals. Always be asking for referrals as a course of business, but even if the client you just called in #4 doesn’t have work for you, Then ask, “Who do you know who… ?”

6. Raise Your Price. I know this seems simple, but most people don’t adjust their pricing in accordance to their costs. I had a client who lost 20% in gross profits because she unknowingly she had undercharged. The change in her business puts $100,000 to her bottom line. I know this is a sensitive area, but know most buyers won’t even register a 10% increase in price.

7. Re-evaluate Your Profitability Priorities. It’s easy to say yes to subscriptions and little extras in your business – but you could be nickel and diming yourself to death. Cancel any unused subscription no matter how good of an idea it might be, trim back on the nice-to-have expenses and create cash to put into the growth of your business.

8. Stop Being Busy, Start Being Effective. Take a good hard look at what you do with your day. The top three things an entrepreneur or small business owner needs to do is 1.) Find The Money, 2.) Sell The Money & 3.) Serve The Money. How much green is in your calendar? If it isn’t a revenue generating task – dump it or delegate it.

9. Stop Doing It By Yourself. Gone are the days when small businesses can be successful in a silo, You get no trophy for doing it on your own. Invest in people who want to invest in you through accountability partners, masterminds or coaching. You will leap-frog your competition when you stand on the shoulders of giants.

10. Don’t Make It Harder. Simplicity and ease is what wins in business. If it sounds to hard, it probably is – especially if you are doing it alone. It’s better to keep things simple when putting together a growth plan for your business. Doing small things every day add up to a big result in the end. The easier things are, the easier they are to be consistent and sustainable. Most businesses stall out because they can’t sustain their efforts – don’t be one of them.

Use one or all of these strategies to kick-start the growth of your small business!

Leslie Hassler, business coach and owner of Your Biz Rules, helps women business owners to become the HERO in their business in a way that gives them more freedom to grow their business and be with their families. As a business growth coach Leslie helps smart businesses across industries avoid the pitfalls, get real results quicker in a way that is about working smarter, not harder. In her practical and grounded approach, you learn how to zero in on what works, generate results and create a business that is a win for your clients, for yourself and your family.

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Tips for Planning Your Business Startup

Starting a business can be a very daunting adventure if a proper plan is not put in place. Most entrepreneurs start up their businesses without putting adequate plans in place to succeed. No wonder one out of every five businesses crumbles within 5 years! If one thing should be taken very seriously, it should be your business plan. This is your “blueprint for success.”

Every business begins from a thought. A thought or idea can only become reality when expected actions are taken. When an idea is conceived, the logical corollary is that such ideas need to be written out, in black and white and on paper; or else the idea will fade off when the enthusiasm that the thought initially brought subsides. Hence, having a written business plan is pertinent if your business is to stand the test of time.

Now, what is a Business Plan?

One definition, according to entrepreneur.com, is that a business plan is a “written description of the future of your business; a document that indicates what you intend to do and how you intend to do it.” If you notice a paragraph on the back of an envelope describing your business strategy, you have already started a written plan, or at least the first draft of a plan. The business plan itself consists of a narrative and several financial worksheets.

The very act of planning helps you to think things through in a systematic and thorough way. Study and research your market niche if you are not sure of the facts, and look at your ideas critically. It may take some time now, but helps to avert costly and disastrous mistakes in future.

In this article, I want to provide a very brief look at the steps involved in planning a business:

1. Identify Your Passion: Knowing what you love doing, even without making money, is the stepping stone in starting any business. Most people enter into a business they know nothing about, and stop after only few months. Some get tired of their businesses simply because they are not happy with the activities involved in running the business anymore. According to Sabrina Parsons, (CEO of Palo Alto Software) “Know yourself, and work in a job that caters to your strengths. This knowledge will make you happier.”

The reason why many businesses fail in their first five years is because the entrepreneurs do not find fulfillment in running their business anymore. Hence, they tend to move on in search for happiness.

You must look within by evaluating yourself and identify what you are good with. If what you are good at gives you happiness, think of how you can monetize it and make it a business. You do this by sharing your passion with others. However, passion alone is not enough in starting a business. You need to plan, set goals and above all, know yourself.

2. Conduct Intense Market Research: As stated above, passion alone is not enough in determining the type of business endeavor you should get involved in. You need to be sure if there are people who are really interested in paying for what you have to offer. Apart from that, you need to identity the category of people who can afford the prices of your products or services, and in what quantity.

You also need to determine how to attract your prospective customers. How do you intend to reach your targeted customers? How do you intend to distribute your products to your targeted customers? How do you know the actual price that potential customers are willing to pay for your products? These and many other things are what you should know before investing your money in starting any business.

3. Write a Business Plan: A business plan is a written document that describes your business idea. Your business plan will give you a sense of direction towards achieving your business goals and objectives. It describes what you want to do, when to do it, where to do it, and how to do it. A written business plan can also be used as a guide running your successful business.

Writing down your plans helps you to anticipate the future of your business. Anticipating your business helps you to identify and possibly avoid any challenge that may bedevil your business in the future.

4. Register Your Business: After you have written down your business plan, you must register your business so that clients will take you serious. Apart from that, registering your business makes your business have a life of its own. It separates you from your business. Any serious minded entrepreneur must have his business registered.

The most common type of business is that of a Sole Proprietor. You run your business yourself and keep accurate books (for tax purposes). You deduct your expenses and pay taxes on the gains. This is the simplest type of business to open. It is also the most vulnerable to having your assets taken away by an angry customer who would file a law suit against you for whatever reason. This is one of many reasons that business owners opt for one of the other types of business set ups.

A Partnership is a type of business where two or more people enter into a business arrangement. Two friends, etc. decide to open a business. If you decide to enter into a partnership, you need a document that details how the business will be divided if the partnership is broken up. It may sound crude to plan this before opening the doors, but it will save a lot of heartache and expenses in the end. Besides, if you never dissolve the partnership – the document is never needed. This is one of those “it is better to have it if it’s needed rather than need it and not have it” moments.

Corporations: There are several types of ways to incorporate. I am not going to get involved with a detailed discussion here. My recommendation is if you are planning on incorporating your business – hire an attorney with expertise in this area. There as several types of corporations and your attorney can evaluate the facts surrounding your business and guide you to the most appropriate type of corporation for you to use.

5. Get The Necessary Capital: This is the most difficult aspect of starting a business. Getting the capital to finance a business is the major factor that discourages most entrepreneurs from moving ahead with their plans.

There is no doubt that most businesses start through self-financing. The reason for this is clear – Nobody believes in your dream until there is a physical manifestation. As a potential business person, you must learn to save aggressively in order to meet the financial requirements of operating your business while taking care of your family at the same time. You can also opt for loans from friends, family or corporate bodies (banks, saving and loans, etc.).

A general rule of business states that, in addition to your start-up costs you should also have at least six to twelve months’ worth of your family’s budget in the bank. In order to finance your company, you will need to match the company’s needs to the appropriate financing option. You should seek the assistance of a good accountant in this area. The accountant will be able to advise you what is best in your situation and also offer assistance in tax planning.

6. Taking Risks: Once the financial aspect of starting a business is settled, what risks you should take should be the next line of action. You should keep on testing different things to be able to ascertain what works well for you and your business plan. By accurately listing the acceptable risks you are willing to take before hand (in your business plan) and in what situations these risks would be taken, will give you valuable guidance when obstacles occur (and they will occur).

By having your plan of action already in place, it will be very easy for you to refer back to your well thought out plan and decide on the course of action to take concerning a pre-identified obstacle to your business success.

It is important to know from the beginning that you may fail in this business. You may not want to acknowledge this fact. I mean, who wants to “plan” on failing, right? But, by acknowledging this now will help to keep you going when you experience any setback in the future. What matters most in business is your level of discipline, persistence and belief.

Whenever, you experience any failure, go back to your business plan and pinpoint where you missed it so that you can implement the appropriate corrections. If the trouble you are experiencing was not identified in your original business plan, now is the time to add it to your plan.

Take the time to go through all of the steps in identifying and mitigating risks, just as you did when you wrote the original plan. By doing this, you accomplish two things:

1) You are methodically thinking through the problem and determining a solution, and

2) You are now adding this unforeseen problem to your plan! If it ever manifests again, you will be able to quickly determining what you did and if it was effective (saving time and stress later).

The steps above, if followed, will help you in building a top level business that will could be your opportunity to change the world! Ensure you do not go into a business without prior planning.

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Considerations for Starting a Home-Based Business

Home-based business owners are increasing every year. They are CEOs, presidents, the board-of-directors, simply put, “the boss” of their businesses all-in-one. Unlike employers of other companies, every action they take affects their business in particular, the bottom line or ROI. That includes investment of time, money, family responsibility and business sustainability, which includes financing, budget, marketing, advertising, customer relationship and suppliers; maintaining production of services and products and keeping accurate records.

Running a home-based business can become overwhelming, and many aspiring business owners go out of business in less than a year. Does the prospect of working from home sound too good to be true? Well, it shouldn’t. Almost everyone can restructure or change their working life so that they can work at home, either full or part time, for employer, freelancer, affiliate, or independent.

This major life change may take patience, creativity, and a little sacrifice, but before long, you could be commuting from the kitchen to your office, a cup of coffee in your hand and the sun shining through your window.

What considerations or profile is needed to start a home-based business:

Description of the business – describe activities involved in conducting the business task
Start up costs and financing sources – estimates what it will cost to get a business going and suggests financing options
Marketing and advertising methods – the degree of success you enjoy in business is directly related to your ability to continually attract new customers and keep existing customers
Essential equipment – list the basic materials you need to start and run your business, such as computers, internet service, printers, ergonomic furniture, etc.
Skills, training and experience needed – describe the knowledge or background needed, experience and skills you may possess for the business and those skills you need to acquire
Type of business – lists whether it’s an in-home or out of home (meaning you have a home office, you work away from home) business.

People work from their homes for many reasons: unemployment, low salary, high cost of day care, difficulty finding a job, both spouses work to maintain a medium standard of living, single mom, no control over work schedule, etc.

Make a plan; it’s your key for success to achieve your goal. Your road to success requires planning. You must make plans, think about them, and act on them. Action is essential to success as a motor and fuel are to an automobile. A major purpose well-stated is half-achieved, restate your major purpose in the progressive tense, action seals the habit of succeeding and eliminates:

Inability to concentrate on what is important
Loss of faith in yourself
Clinging to the status quo
Lack of organization
Stagnant mind set – custom is king (though it shouldn’t be)
Failure to evaluate yourself

The ultimate formula for home businesses or any business to succeed is really quite simple. What is that? A marketing system for autopilot lead generation ensures long-term success. Here are six reasons why:

Generate quality leads consistently and economically
Convert as many of those leads as possible into sales
Ensure that you delight your customers so they’ll be pre-disposed to buy from you again and recommend your business to others
Repeatedly sell refills, replacements and other products to your family of existing customers
Ask customers to refer you to others who may want the same benefits
Keep going back to step #1 and repeat the pattern again

Though a home-based business may lead to a more hectic home life, home-based businesses have the important element of flexibility not usually found in a 9-5 job. Home-based business owners can tailor businesses to fit the needs of customers as well as their family needs. Truth is, many home-based businesses are mobile in recreational vehicle offices on the scenic routes making hundreds, thousands, and millions of dollars a year. They have the freedom to work in their offices at any hour; run their businesses according to their philosophies; and pursue any opportunity or destination they prefer. A Chinese proverb says, “Journey of a thousand miles begins with the first step.” But in what direction? Plan your direction.

When the goal is clear, the purpose is strong; the steps will be decisive, assertive and forceful. Direction and determination decide destiny. Before you open for business or begin to advertise, check with your local authorities about having a home business, your state regulations and licensing requirements. Your regional Small Business Development Center (SBDC) will also have information about your state’s business regulations.

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How To Start and Run a Successful Lifestyle Business Online

A Personal Insight

Congratulations! You have chosen a really rewarding option into how your business and life will coexist happily ever after.” That was a little note to myself when I chose the lifestyle business option, quite a far cry from a traditional start-up that I was running in the entertainment and events industry after quitting my 9-5 job. The latter required me to be in a specific physical location of course so as to reach and serve my clients.

Today, I run a digital business model and all I need is a laptop handy and an Internet connection. I then choose when I want to do some work and where I want to get that work done. And that my friend is what I call a perfect match! My life meets my business everywhere I go, anywhere I am. The general business rules remain pretty similar and herein I will share my own golden rules that new entrepreneurs will particularly find informative… But first… if you are about to quit your job, you are probably wondering

Can Starting A Lifestyle Business Change Your Life?

No more dreadful Monday morning train commutes to work and staring into a stranger’s face seated across from me wearing sunnies on a cold morning, perhaps a subtle attempt to numb the pain of the lifeless surrounding. They are having the same thoughts as me. “Friday cannot come quick enough”. Then I start thinking about my email box and that Monday morning meeting that I have not prepared for. I have to fill in my boss on the current project status before he can go into another meeting with more important people than me to tell them what I just told him!

I remember having those thoughts and it just makes me queasy as I write this. I know you get the drift. I remember suffering temporary amnesia as I walked out of the house, holding car keys and looking for them all over the kitchen and lounge. I had spent a whole hour pre-occupied in thought on how I will handle the stress that was about to unfold for the next 5 days of my life.

The Road Ahead

As exciting as this new journey is about to be you want to get a few things in order straight away in your new ‘house’ to make this transition process as smooth as you possibly can. That business idea is looking great, you have done lots of research, consulted a few souls preferably smarter than you. You have also been making some new friends. I really hope none of them is still working where you just quit! I soon found out that these friendships only flourished over the years because of shared interests such as office politics that tended to specially thrive on Friday night at the bar when we didn’t have to whisper about overwhelming love for senior management.

The reality now is, you are in an elevated consciousness phase of your life, one that these friendships cannot exist. Your mindset needs to be fed with new insights and nurtured with refreshing thoughts about living a fulfilled life. You have some money saved up in the bank and probably have an actionable step-by-step business plan. There is something of value that you have to share and a strategy to get customers lined up ready to give your ‘something’ a warm welcome into this new world order.

But that is the easy part. I shall be completely honest here; apart from some money that I had saved up at the point of quitting, I really didn’t have much more than a rough idea of what I was going to do. I was risking it all. When I left my day job some years ago, I was at a point where it was either that or I lose my mind.

7 Golden Rules

A New MIND-set:

As with all things new, your mind is the first guy you want to put in check. Let him know there is a new sheriff in town. If you are like me, you have been spending the better part of the last 6 – 12 months buried deep in business books and ripping them apart in your spare time. At some point, you found personal development material captivating. Eventually, you started finding out why that constant nagging feeling of life and lack of fulfilment was. As an example, I had read books like Richdad Poor Dad by Robert Kiyosaki and listened to the audio version of the same in case something was lost in translation! I had also read Think & Grow Rich by Napoleon Hill and Dale Carnegie’s How To Win Friends and Influence People among others.

This is an activity that you will not want to let slip into the overflowing ‘good habits to continue when I get time bucket’. I had one like that and needed no motivation adding more stock completely in autopilot. Mind food is paramount in this journey. You want to stay inspired a good chunk of the time because this is where the sowing is happening. The thing is as abstract as some of the ideas in this material may seem at this point; I found that with time, it all starts to fall into place as the journey progresses. So do not sweat any concepts that are not clear yet. Keeping the reading habit going is all you need. These books are not really designed for reading cover to cover. Think of them like the SAT NAV system your car or as you own version of a personal SIRI.

It is a known fact that our minds don’t like disruption. Whether that disruption is good for us or not, it is not very welcome without some whip cracking. The mind has got everything figured out. It is a very well trained machine with thoughts and habits that shape your life and works even when you are sleeping, doing the ‘regular chores around the house’.

The 9-5 routine mindset is still at this point deeply wired into your system. It’s advisable to start setting up ground rules so that YOU and the MIND are both on the same page. This takes a while and certainly took me the better part of 2 years. Don’t stress just know there are changes you will need to work on consistently in this area. Oh, remember when I mentioned who your new friends cannot be a little earlier?

Breaking The Bad:

I made the mistake of trying to keep a regular 9-5-like routine when I first started my entrepreneurial journey. Big mistake. What tends to happen as a result is, the mind in these early days of business life, is still largely unaware of the ‘new life in construction progress’. It actively runs the old familiar version of ‘code’ from its 9-5 days in the background in stealth mode. You might know what happens when you try to run a new version of Microsoft Windows on old PC hardware? Yes, exactly right!

All sorts of weird compatibility issues are not unheard of.

I did not understand this myself. The mindset driving my routine was still stuck in the old version. The correct term for this is the subconscious mind. So your poor conscious mind, which is pretty much what we operate on until new ways are ‘learned’ runs into a constant battle. It really wants to change the world for you, it’s ready to work hard, promising to cut the Friday night binge that serves no purpose other than a regular headache which eats away the Saturday morning and pinky swears to cut down on addictive TV shows.

Someone, please explain why my favourite big screen stars are also hanging out in these TV shows… like really?

The Deal With Time Management:

As a new entrepreneur what quickly comes into awareness I would say is the time management beast and what seems to be like an endless stream of unmanageable distractions. In a lifestyle business that is run from home, the park, at the beach, the airport lounge or while on safari at The Mara, this can be a constant battle. Don’t get too hang up on being perfect day one with this one. The more I tried to fight it the more I stressed about it. Stress did not improve my time management skills and only added to unfinished tasks that needed more worrying about… I thought! The time drama continued until I put measures to progressively learn how to improve time management.

Keep educating yourself on what works for your schedule and what sorts of distractions are overpowering you. I can tell you now it’s going to be technology related!

It didn’t matter that I was an early riser who wouldn’t go to bed until my eyeballs were literally unlocking themselves from my sockets in protest. Occasionally I got the odd finger in this scuffle! And sometimes I still wouldn’t give up. Now, this does not necessarily equate to being productive. The actual real result was a constant feeling of exhaustion, elevated stress levels, and anxiety.

Why You Need To Design A Routine That Works Around Your Lifestyle Business

I hadn’t changed my routine so my mind would expect the usual treatment, 9 am we are active at work and then at 5 pm it expects that we are on the ‘winding up for the day phase’. I, on the other hand, had with all good intent, added extra hours in front of the 9 and after the 5. Now you can see where the problem was once I kept this up for a while. Insane!!! Create a new routine and optimise around what works for you.

Decide When You Want To Work… Create A Routine… Then Follow It With Military Discipline

Perfecting this phase when you start a lifestyle business, which means your physical surroundings change constantly, it can feel daunting. However, with a well mapped out daily, and weekly routine that you have the discipline to stick with, you will start to see results. In no time, this will end up running on autopilot.

There’s going to be a lot of 10 to 12 hour days, maybe longer but they don’t and shouldn’t be in your constant daily routine. After all, it’s business around your lifestyle. I have 3-hour blocks and generally leave my ‘heavy lifting work’ for when I get into a state of flow, usually after midnight.

Understanding Your Personal Power and Peak Performance State:

This state starts becoming more regular with practice and awareness. Understand your highs (i.e. peak energy state), lows (this is no time to do the books and usually a good time to choose pizza toppings and make big decisions like thin or thick crust?) and my personal favourite flow state (this is creation mode and a good time to change the World). Pick a block of hours that works for you. Once new habits in your routine become solid you will have an easier time telling these states apart.

It’s not unusual for me to get into flow while at the shops looking at apples and kiwi fruit fresh deals of the day. This state for me comes through an insightful thought or sometimes as a series of thoughts back to back, so please keep a hardcover notebook at all times for these moments. You might just stumble on your best business idea yet!

Time management and productivity is a continuous optimisation process. All you have to do is decide how many hours you want to work. Pay attention to your body clock and maximise for times when you are at peak energy states. Then learn to induce these states through rewarding practices like meditation.

Schedule Fun Times on Tuesdays:

Although it’s not how I started off, I am lucky thus far to be working on businesses that allow me lots of flexibility as to when and where I actually work. If this tickles your fancy you are on the right track here. In my case, all I need is my mac book pro and decent wifi. Tip: When I am in a location where the menu has an under $10 dollar price tag frenzy going on, I move on swiftly.

About Tuesdays

Move all the things you used to do for fun on Saturday to this day. The Keyword here is FUN guys so if mowing the lawn is fun! Okay, you get my point. It doesn’t matter what the activity is but I recommend you do it in the early days of your journey. The feeling is absolutely incredible. For me, it was reading the paper and a coffee down the road.

Do you guys wonder why we still print newspapers today?

So, usually, one or two local Moms will swing by the coffee shop and that is all the action there is. The rest of the ‘real’ world folks are at work. This is my opinion but what I found with being Mr Tuesday is that it gives me a boost of confidence and that sense of freedom where I feel, “yeah that’s right, I can do what I want when I want”.

I will point out here that this has nothing to do with money. I have done this even when the reality at that time was ‘cash-flow challenges!’. I am not advocating that you should smile and be happy when you are broke, no no no. When you think about it, this is when you need your mind at a 100% and if all it takes is a series of 3-dollar coffees down the road, so be it. While on this topic, my ideal Tuesday day is on a yacht surrounded by endless views of blue seas at exactly 11 am and a safety vest in close proximity! Unwanted swimming lessons are not part of this plan.

What does your ideal Tuesday day look like?

Your Inner Circle… Your Players CLUB:

This is an interesting one because if you think about your ideal Tuesday above, how many people do you know today can do that? Initially, you will probably be alone or maybe with someone close to you like a partner, wife, girlfriend or somebody else who probably does what you do, or benefits directly from what you do. I found out that the friends I used to hang out with on Saturdays and Sundays in my previous life no longer fitted in the new life I was creating. It’s a delicate balance but I had to make some changes. For the same reason, of course, the folks at your old job will probably not take Tuesday off to hang out at your newly found happy place to share happy coffee with you.

I could go on and on about this inner circle area of the new life but what I realised and accepted was, I needed to decide as part of the journey, to be alone for a little while as more new quality friendships developed. This is still an ongoing process. As an example, a couple of months ago I was in HongKong for a week just by myself. I had a blast but would it have been nicer to share that escapade with someone familiar?

I met new people on that trip and did things I had never done before. I love travelling and it is one of the reasons why starting a lifestyle business was a brilliant model. The thing is, if I can make friends who also have time to be lazy on Tuesdays for happy coffee and random sun baking escapades, that is probably a good ‘new friend barometer’ check right there! Oh and hopefully of course what they do for money is generally not frowned upon by law!

On the real, though, I personally don’t have many of these friends but I found that this is a good time for me to reflect inwards and to focus on my personal growth. If you are new into this game, this could be a good time to spend with a business mentor, perhaps meet other like-minded people in your local community, go deep into nature or maybe just hang out on social media platforms and engage and find out the latest buzz like who got a cat! Seriously the point here is, have a lot of choices in your back pocket that you can go crazy with and if you have bucket list ideas all figured out, check them off weekly without fail.

Family:

Family is very dear to me and I would imagine it’s the same for you too. Perhaps, much so that you are making this decision to escape the 9-5 and really start learning new ways to make money outside the voluntary solitary confinement space (also known as office cubicle). One of my reasons for choosing this journey was my family. To be more available to them and to enhance my own life experiences. To fill those experiences with what I really want anytime I wanted it. The one thing I encountered and you probably might as well, those we love and care for dearly may not understand the new you. These moments may not be as dramatic such as waving placards in protest but you will see it vividly.

Remember how our minds don’t like change?

It’s not their fault and they are probably coming from a place of love for you. Embrace the response you get with love and remember your bigger mission. I had lots of strange conversations with people I love and would have like to be speaking a foreign language at the time. That way being misunderstood would have been spot on. Then one day I realised, they weren’t really saying they disliked my new outlook on life and crazy ideas like giving up a six-figure income.

They were just saying, “We don’t understand how to process this new information”. Please show us how. You might also take consolation in the fact that how well you manage this close relationship is a reflection of how you will do ‘out there’ where the World is short of people like you and me, people who are lost in self-indulgence and totally unconscious of their daily actions will not understand you either!

Remember, training takes time. That’s what it took for me until they somewhat understood. If you are lucky enough to get the all in response from them, great, if not, give them time and if need be, add the space element to it as well. Be kind to yourself.

At the time, I was on a roller coaster going through a myriad of changes both personal and business that required me to be very present. My first business was in an industry I did not know at all, the physical surroundings were not very familiar (I will discuss this in a later post) and a pending divorce as a result of a strained long-distance relationship. Now, this was a lot of action in one headspace!

In Summary

Your circumstances may be a little different from mine for wanting to come this way and choosing this journey. As you go along, it’s reasonable to expect moments where you will be tried and tested by fate. Things will happen that will be out of your comfort zone or out of your control and sometimes both.

In the end, I find that clarity on my why I do what I do sails me through choppy waters. I embrace whatever comes my way with love. Answers to what I don’t know come in the right time. I keep the bigger mission clear in my mind. Creating a life where I can live on my own terms is not free, there’s a price to be paid.

Another really important thing to have a solid business system. I found my answer with the six-figure mentors. They have a step-by-step business system that shows you how to leverage the Internet and start your very own online business. What’s, even more, is that if your goal is to start your own business say around your passion, the business skills you will learn are second to none. From experience with my first 2 ventures as a newbie without a mentor, I would recommend every new entrepreneur make getting a mentor, their number one priority. Looking at how I started my entrepreneurial journey, this was my single most expensive mistake up until today as I write this.

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5 Tips On How To Find Customers For Your Business Online

Introduction

This might sound obvious but did you know that if you are marketing to everyone you market to no one? It’s possible it will work but chances are your margins will be affected by inefficient marketing. A bigger question to ask, how well do you know your customer? How much information can you provide about them at the drop of a hat?

I will use an example of a mobile DJ company I used to own although the gist of this model applies to most businesses if not all. If you are struggling to get people through to your offers consistently online or offline… read on.

Who Are They?

The answer to this question allows us to gain a general understanding of how our customer looks like, where they live etc. In my mobile DJ context where I did weddings, this would be couples between ages 25-35 who have been in a relationship for 3 years plus. They also live in Perth, Australia within a 50-kilometre radius of where my business was located. People in this age group who have been dating for that amount of time would generally be considering longterm commitment right? This also means I am willing to drive 100 kilometres and I have resources to do any gig within this radius.

What Do They Do?

This question allows us to answer some basic information about the day in the life of our ideal customer. Where they work, their income levels, and what they do for fun. This also provides information about what sort of people they are likely to be. Feels a little weird acting ‘big brother’ but I had to get past that mindset if I wanted to nail this modelling in my businesses. This thinking allows me to present my offers directly to somebody who actually needs what I have. Isn’t that powerful?

Where Do They Hang Out?

Now that we know what our customer does for a living, how much they make and what they like to do, we can probably start to make some very targeted assumptions about where they hang out. This could be either online or offline. So on the weekends if they like to eat out, what sort of restaurants do they go to? If they enjoy the occasional frothy drink, what sorts of pubs, nightclubs fit their class? As you can start to see here, I am basically visualising my customers’ life through my mind. When online which platforms do they hang out in? What information are they looking at?

Tom (a groom to be) could be spending time on LinkedIn looking at information regarding his profession as an IT consultant engineer. Why? He knows they might need to buy a house one they are married. In his mind, this means he needs a bigger income coming in. His worry though is, are there opportunities coming up in his line of work? Mary (bride to be) could be looking up event companies on Facebook and stores that sell wedding dresses.

Can you see why I need to answer this question? This is important because the idea is for me to get in front of them very close to where they spend a lot of time.

What Do They Want?

Each and every one of us including our customers is looking to move away from pain or towards pleasure situation of some sort. We also have a difficult time knowing what we need and what we want. Our customers are exactly the same. In our case we are dealing with a ‘want’. We need air. I am guessing if you ran out of air right now, it doesn’t matter what someone says to you, you are buying yes? ‘Wants’ we can do without BUT if we are in pain or looking for pleasure we might buy.

So what does Mary want?

Mary wants to look good on the big day. She also wants to have a ceremony that is the envy of her friends who will be at the wedding.What are the deciding factors in Mary’s mind for this to happen? A beautiful wedding dress, incredible makeup and, a great party. She wants her friends to talk and comment about it for months to come as they view photos on her Facebook page.

For the certainty of a great after party, a great DJ is required. Mary will need some proof that the DJ she gets is the right one. So my mission is to be in front of her eyes holding a great review in hand somewhere on a wedding DJs in Perth Facebook page. How do I know I need to be on Facebook? I know because Mary likes to hang out there. Chances are she tends to look for her new information here as well.The new information here is a good wedding DJ.

What Is Stopping Them From Getting It?

Tom and Mary might want a good DJ at their wedding but they might not know enough about selecting one, they might also be on a tight budget meaning they are planning the event themselves. Armed with this information, I can provide value towards eliminating those barriers. This could be providing valuable information about how to create a music playlist, how to pick a wedding venue on a budget, the process of hiring outside caterers etc. I can have the information sitting in a blog on my website or links to such content on my Facebook page. The latter would be ideal because I know if Mary finds me on the Perth DJs page, she will click through to my page. Is she going to find valuable content on my page to help her ease her ‘pain’? Of course, she will!

Final Thoughts

With these 5 questions answered, I think it’s a good assumption that I can get Tom and Mary very close to a buying decision. I also know exactly where to focus my marketing efforts every day so I can get the most value from my time and money invested.

Wishing you success.

There is no shortage of tactics to market your business online and finding the right customers. However, the Internet is very fluid. Things change every day. You need to have a solid marketing education and a marketing blueprint strategy for your business. If you are a new business owner who has never sold anything online, I can offer you the same exact training that got me out of the trenches and helped me save my business. This training is a step-by-step guide which I found very powerful.

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I’m Starting My Own Internet Business And I Need Answers

If you’re starting your own internet business it can seem a bit overwhelming. As with any business, an internet business does require time, resources and determination to get started and maintain. But you can get bogged down with all the jargon and flood of information that you see online.

Here are some commonly asked questions that get asked when budding entrepreneurs start their own internet business.

What Does ‘The Money Is In The List’ Mean?

It won’t be long after you’ve started an internet business before you come across the phrase ‘The money is in the list’. This simply means the people that you have on your database, or email list, are the people who are most likely to buy from you. They are willing to receive emails from you because they are interested in your products and services. Email marketing is still considered the most effective online marketing method. Make sure that you’re building an email list of prospects from day one.

What Is Affiliate marketing?

Affiliate marketing is a popular internet business model. It’s like being a commission-paid sales person. You’re called an affiliate because you’re associated with the product but you’re not part of the business that actually produced the product. When you promote the product and make a sale, the product owner will pay you a commission. It’s a great way for starting your own internet business because you don’t have to buy any stock, sort out any payment systems or arrange the product delivery. The product owner does all of that. Your job is to the find the customers and encourage them to visit the product’s sales page.

Am I Too Old To Do Business On The Internet?

Getting results has nothing to do with age. It’s about your determination to succeed. Every online entrepreneur has target audience who will connect to the way that they do business. Keep in mind that people by from people they know, like and trust. Believe in yourself and your audience will believe in you too.

How Do I Learn To Do New Stuff?

Go online and search for courses that will teach you what you want to know.When you buy a course, put into practice everything you learn before you think that it hasn’t worked. And even then, go to the product creator and show them your efforts and see if they can help you get on the right track. Don’t buy every course, tool and one time offer presented to you. You can get started with free or low cost choices before you re-invest in your business for a few upgrades.

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Do What You Love to Do By Starting a Digital Franchise Business

Across the world teachers are telling their students to do what they love to do. Imagine back when you were in kindergarten or grade school and you did whatever you wanted to do (within reason). Meaning you did not have as many fears as you have now as an adult.

Possibly you desired to be a firefighter, a teacher, a doctor, an artist or even an actor yet as you became older for whatever reason you set aside the things that you loved doing to do something else. You actually settled.

Several artists will say “I do not want to be a broke artist so I will work a job and do my art on the side”. Often times the art is not only put on the side but it is not even an after thought. Years will pass by and the feeling of painting or drawing will rise until you feel an undeniable feeling that must be addressed.

This is where we are now as a global world. People across the country now know that they can position themselves to do what they love while they are working, or care giving, or teaching. Long gone are the days where you can only dream about doing one thing.

Doing what you love is an expression of who you are and why you were created. Doing what you love can literally bring you more peace than you ever imagined that you would have in your life.

In one particular industry called the “digital franchise business” there are people from all walks of life such as:
real estate agents and brokers
those disengaged about their careers
contractors
parents
grandparents
teachers, nurses, doctors, lawyers
those hit hard with the economic system
college and university students
baby boomers and retirees
veterans and disabled veterans, just to name a few

The digital franchise business is a business that offers digital products and people purchase the business and resell it. The cool thing about this is people who desire to do what they love talk about the things that matter to them, they talk about the things that they love, they talk about their experiences and areas of expertise and attract others to do the same. In order for them to continue to do what they love they resell the digital franchise business and earn a good income depending on the businesses compensation plan.

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Before Starting Your First Online Business, Think About Practicality

Ever wondered how many people around the world use the Internet every day?

According to the United Nations agency that surveys international communications, 3.2 billion people were using the Internet in 2015.

It follows that this will get even bigger, with the Internet extending to the farthest reaches of the planet. Even Australia might one day have NBN, however far-fetched it seems.

What does this rapid development mean to the business world? It means thousands of opportunities coming in for entrepreneurs to compete and go big in the online marketplace.

We are now living in the information age, and everything has changed because of it. Especially when it comes to the way businesses is done.

Using the power and reach of the Internet, small-time entrepreneurs are now able to maximise their reach and their opportunities.

It’s no wonder startups are a popular business model: people have the chance to finally start the business that they love. To finally do what they are passionate about, and make a living out of it.

But despite the freedom and opportunity provided by the modern world, and specifically by the Internet, there are still many things to consider before taking the step into the business world.

IS IT PRACTICAL?
In deciding what kind of business to choose, always consider its practicality first: Will this kind of business work for me? Will I make enough profit and get enough support to sustain this in the long run? Will I be able to make a living and build a future out of this?

Such questions at the start may be frightening, but such questions will give you insights, keep your vision in check, and root you in reality.

This is where entrepreneurs sabotage themselves early in the game. Practicality is a serious matter; without it, the business can’t go on since there will be no reason for it to survive.

Even if you are truly passionate about a certain line of business, it will not survive if it does not somehow give you something back.

If it is just the creative idea that you have, and it is not at all practical, then it is a not a wise risk, especially if it is just your first time running an online business. (Note that you can always save the risks for later when you have the experience!)

You have to set the conditions clear on this matter before even beginning; otherwise, you may end up risking your efforts for nothing in the end.

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