Gone Hiking

July 31, 2008

Mountains

I love running an internet business because of the lifestyle and freedom.

My normal work schedule is Monday through Thursday. Sometimes I’ll check email or finish a project Friday morning, but Fridays are normally part of my long weekends.

This week I’ve left for the north Georgia mountains (today through Wednesday). We rented a cabin out by the hiking trails. We’ll spend some time hiking, mountain biking, and relaxing out in nature.

When was the last time you took a vacation from your business?

I’ve always noticed that right after vacation periods is when I have the best production. Problems that were nagging me get solved. New ideas flow like water. It’s easy to stay focused on the most important projects.

Here are few questions to ask yourself to see if you might need to take some time off.

– Do you find your enthusiasm for business has waned?

– Is it hard to stay focused on your projects?

– Are there several problems nagging you that you can’t seem to solve?

– Do you have trouble disconnecting from work during your free time?

– Do you seem to be less productive during your work periods?

While it seems counter intuitive, often the best way to push your business forward is by stepping out of it for a while. You’ll refresh and renew. Ideas come. You’ll come back intent on solving the problems that have been holding you back for a while.

Even when you have team members who “do” the business while you work on the business, you have to take a break from that as well.

Have you ever experienced trying to solve a difficult problem. You work on it all day. You brainstorm. You research. Then the next morning the idea just comes to you almost effortlessly. You wake up knowing what to do. Your subconscious mind used the work you put in to solve the problem.

Vacations can produce the same effect as long as you don’t sit there thinking about your business. The rule I give myself is no direct thinking about the business. If I come up with an idea, I’ll write it down in a notebook. Then leave it. Don’t sit around thinking about it.

When you come back, you’ll have a notebook full of profitable ideas to put in place.

Your First JV

July 28, 2008

JVs…Joint Ventures…Strategic Alliances…oh my!

You’ve probably already been told that joint ventures are the fastest way to grow your business.

That is 100% true. The quickest to sell your product is to find out who already has your customers and get them to split the profits with you through an endorsement. The fastest way to build your list is to figure out who already has your subscribers and how you can get in front of their audience. A risk-free way to create your first product is to interview an expert who already has credibility in the marketplace.

Build your business using other people’s information, other people’s subscribers, and other people’s skills.

But most beginners have a horrible time getting their first JVs going because they go about it in totally the wrong way.

They send out an email to all the top marketers saying, “Would you be interested in promoting my product?”

Sorry. No. I wouldn’t be interested.

Except they don’t receive that rejection email back. All they hear is silence. Worse than being rejected is being ignored.

I remember the first time I asked Julie, my wife now, out on a date. I asked her if she’d like to go out with me. Instead of responding with a yes, no, or even a maybe, she ignored the question and changed the subject. After forcing the issue and asking again eventually she responded with a, “Sure, I’m not afraid to go out with you.”

But let’s put my personal problems aside for now…

If you send out the normal “Would you like to promote my product” emails, the most often response will be silence. People won’t respond.

They get those emails every single day. And it’s almost as bad sending out your product to them in the mail. Do you realize how many products most business owners with large audiences already receive?

You get lost in the shuffle.

We have to think like a marketer when you’re going after JVs.

Your audience here are busy business owners who already receive JV offers constantly. They’ve heard all the pitches about how much money they can make with your product.

How will you stand out as unique in this competitive marketplace?

Let’s say you’re starting at ground zero with nothing. You don’t have a track record or other relationships to build off of. Obviously once you have some successful JVs under your belt, you can use those as leverage to keep building your online empire.

Just like any other prospect, your potential JV partners are tuned into WIIFM (What’s In It For Me?).

What’s in it for them?

What can you give to the list owner that’s unique…that they’re not getting anywhere else?

They already receive a ton of emails to promote products. All of them talk about how much commission they can earn. All of them offer a free copy of the product (if you’re not offering this you’re not even in the market).

What aren’t they offering?

The first place you can stand out is with real numbers. For example, no one wants to be your test dummy. What conversion rate is your site getting currently? If you’re not sure, run some tests and make sure you’re tracking numbers.

Why will their audience appreciate them for recommending the product? Show that you’ve really done your homework by subscribing to their list, reading their blog, and knowing how they normally operate.

In many markets, just having these real numbers will put you far ahead any other competitor you have.

What about the really competitive markets like internet business?

You may have to go further. Others are also sharing their numbers, so how can you give more? What else does that publisher need (WIIFM)? If they have a newsletter, maybe they need article content which you could provide them. If they have a membership site, they definitely need content for that. If they’re a large publisher you could offer to develop exclusive content just for their group.

Maybe they’re not interested in promoting your first product. Perhaps it could simply be included as a free bonus with a product they’re already selling.

You may be thinking, “But then I won’t make any money!” So what? You would be getting exposure and building your name in the market by being attached to their product. Your information would be put in front of thousands of people you never would have reached without a large advertising budget.

Another backdoor strategy is to secure an interview with them. Come up with a good topic and find questions related to the topic. During the 30 minutes to an hour you’re on the phone with them you’re building a relationship with them which can later be leveraged into other opportunities.

Think long-term instead of immediate profits for your first few JVs. What can you provide to them or give to them to improve their business first. This old statement from Jay Abraham comes to mind, “Give first and prove your worth.”

This applies to customers. It also applies to JV relationships.

5 Keys to a Beginners Fast Start

July 24, 2008

How does a beginner get started quickly?

In my experience of talking with hundreds of beginners, the majority of them stumble around for months or even years before they really get their business moving.

It’s always sad for me when someone tells me they’ve been studying for the past year “planning” to start their first site.

Quit planning. Do something today, even if it’s not the right thing.

– Put up your first blog at WordPress.com.
– Buy a license to a low cost product to get your feet wet (make sure it’s a good product first).
– Find a freebie you can give away and use it as an incentive to signup for the new list you created at Aweber.com.
– Join an affiliate program and promote the product.
– Setup a low daily budget of maybe $5 and run an Adwords ad (keep it very low because you’re getting your feet wet).

You can’t be afraid of making mistakes, because you’re going to make some.

Even experienced marketers make mistakes. The key is to keep losses and learning experiences small. Once something proves itself to work, then you roll out with it.

I spent some time recently interviewing Lee McIntyre, because he came online and succeeded quickly in 2 different niches.

He was a teacher with no previous business experience. He never wrote an ad and never created a product before. Yet, he just had his one year anniversary of being in an online business here a few weeks back.

I put together a product called, “Beginners Only: ABC 30 Day Success Secrets.” In addition to the interview I included a 15 page guide I wrote based off his interview to show you how to get started quickly in your new business. Click here now to find out more…

Here are 5 Quick Tips from the interview:

1. Don’t Sit Around Worrying About Your Niche.

Lee didn’t sit around trying to figure out what niche to start in. He used his previous skills and experience to jump in with both feet into a new market. Even though I normally recommend people do a little research into their market, the majority of beginners overdo and overthink this starting out. The first market you start in isn’t the one you have to live in forever. It’s the place you get your feet wet and earn while you learn.

2. Take Action

He didn’t study all the materials to get started. He saw a couple of others who were succeeding in the market, and he just got started. He began experimenting with what worked and what didn’t. Quit planning so much all the time and do it. Little one page business plans are all I use personally, and I modify those as results change.

3. Focus on One Way to Generate Traffic

He didn’t know how to do Adwords, articles, etc. He only knew one way to generate traffic when he started. So he used it. Eventually he started picking up other skills and adding those to his marketing, but he started with just one. You don’t have to know everything. You only need to know enough to get started.

4. Start With Low Cost Products

He didn’t try to create a huge course starting out (although he has larger packages today). It is too much work to get started this way, and you have to write even better add copy to sell those higher ticket materials. Lee got started with little low cost simple reports – something you could easily create in a weekend.

5. Provide Value to a Buyer’s List

He focused on his buyers. As people purchased his products he was building an email list. Instead of sending them one promotion after another, he concentrates on providing them with content and value. He still promotes products of course, but he builds his relationship through value.

To have access to the full interview, transcript, and special report, “Beginners Only: ABC 30 Day Success Secrets” click here now…

Beginners Guide to Tracking Your Stats

July 21, 2008

“I know half of my advertising is wasted. I just don’t know which half.”
John Wanamaker

Do you feel the same way?

I can tell you from my own experiments that at least half the ads I test don’t work out.

If I wasn’t tracking everything, I wouldn’t know which half either!

Sometimes I feel one of the primary reasons I need to recommend Google Adwords to marketers is because of the tracking it forces you to do. If you run a successful Adwords campaign, you know what I’m talking about.

You test keywords. You test ads. You test landing pages. It’s a constant process of refinement to find out what works best in your market.

If you’re not testing and tracking every detail, you’re losing a fortune.

Becoming an expert at tracking is an essential skill for any long-term Adwords advertiser. It’s a skill that will serve you well in all other forms of advertising as well.

Where should you get started in tracking?

1. Install Google Analytics

This is one of the basics. Sign up for a free Google Analytics account.

They’ll provide you with a code you simply add to the bottom HTML of all your pages on each of your domains. Now they’ll track your incoming traffic for you. In addition, I’ve found very few people use the “Goals” section.

You can set up specific goals on your site. For example, let’s say you have a squeeze page, sales page, order form, and thank you page for buyers. You could set up goal #1 of people subscribing. This goal would be set as your sales page since people go through the squeeze page first. If they subscribe they are taken to your sales page.

Analytics will track the conversion numbers of how many of your overall visitors get to this first goal of arriving at the sales page.

Next you could set a goal of buying the product. The end page someone would visit here is the buyer’s thank you page. If someone on the sales page goes to the order form and orders, they would be taken to the thank you page. Analytics will track the number of visitors who make it to your thank you page to give you a sales percentage.

Having Analytics installed will give you some of the basics. You’ll know how much traffic your site is getting, where those visitors are coming from, and through looking at your goals you’ll see the conversion rates.

If someone asks your conversion rate, you’ll know this number. You can also figure out your income per visitor through these stats. If you’re selling a $100 product and have a 2% conversion of overall visitors to sales, you’re earning $2 per visitor.

2. Google Optimizer

After you have the basics down you might want to expand out to testing different pages on your site. The easiest way to do this is with another free Google tool, Optimizer. You’ll need to sign up for an Adwords account (although you could pause that campaign after you set it up if you’re not ready to run it).

This gives you the ability to use the Optimizer. The very first time you use it you might want to do a simple A/B experiment. This simply means you create at least two different sales pages (changing possibly the headline, a photo, etc.). You can have multiple pages you’re testing at once if you like.

Optimizer will then rotate the pages and track your thank you page code (after they subscribe or buy). You’ll see the conversion rates for each of the pages whenever you view this experiment.

Once you feel more comfortable with tracking you can expand out to a multivariate test. Optimizer allows 5 sets of 5 combos to test at once. This means you can test 5 different headlines, 5 post headlines, 5 photos, 5 intro paragraphs, 5 prices, etc. The software rotates through all the options you provided to show you which ones are giving you the best results.

One thing to keep in mind with these tests is if you’re really running all 5 tests at once it may take quite a while to receive good reliable results unless you have a large amount of traffic (that’s another reason to use the basic A/B tests when you’re first starting out).

3. Tracking Specific Ads

You will also want to track specific ads, because you can have wildly different results from each source of traffic. While you may pull 25% conversion on your squeeze page from PPC traffic, you may be doing 50% or higher from joint ventures.

You have several options here.

If you’re doing Adwords advertising, you can use their conversion tracking code to separate all your sales by keyword phrase and ad.

You could setup another page on your site for a specific ad. In other words, instead of driving them to your normal landing page, you setup a separate landing page you can track specifically for that campaign.

Or you could use an ad tracker such as the one built into Netofficetoolbox.com. When I use this option I set up an “Ad Tracker” and the software gives me a unique URL for just that one ad. Any subscribers or sales made through my shopping cart can be tracked back to that ad.

Another option I haven’t used in a while is to simply sign yourself up as an affiliate in your own program. Then use your affiliate link to track that ad. Any sales that came in to that affiliate account you setup are from that source of advertising.

No matter what option you choose, the key here is to track all your advertising. What works and what doesn’t?

Let’s root out the 50% of your advertising that’s not working for you right now.

Hypercopyitis Outbreak Spreading

July 17, 2008

Remember this…

“Friends don’t let friends catch hypercopyitis.”

If this is the first time you’ve heard about this devastating disease, make sure to read this hypercopyitis news report here.

Hypercopyitis is quickly reaching epidemic proportions.

One element leading to this outbreak has been the overemphasis on Swipe files.

Everyone talks about them. Collect great producing letters to generate ideas from, but do you really “swipe” from them? Hopefully not. That’s why I prefer the term “Idea Files.”

When you’re getting ready to write a new promotion read through some successful letters for the market. If they really resonate with you, copy them by hand to start programming yourself about how great copy is written.

I’ve even taken a collection of letters at times, read them outloud, and put them on my iPod to listen to while exercising.

All of this is about generating ideas and studying copy to see how it flows well.

But actually swiping the wording and phrases, that’s almost always a mistake. Let’s not even get into the plagiarism issue.

It’s a mistake from the standpoint that your product should be unique in the marketplace. While you may find ideas or phrases that would match your solution, no one else’s product is exactly like yours (at least if you want to be successful).

In Breakthrough Advertising, on page 60, Eugene Schwartz said, “But the idea for an ad or a headline demands its own shape. It cannot be fitted into someone else’s solution.”

When all the copywriters are simply swiping back and forth from each other, the only difference between them is to make the promised claims larger than life. And they keep getting bigger.

That’s why it seems “hypey” markets keep piling it on. If the first person had two shovels full of hype, the next person gets a third shovel. Or the use a dump truck.

Pretty soon you’re promising magical weight loss of 57 lbs by this afternoon if only you take the blue pill.

Don’t get me wrong. Of course I have “swipe files.” I go through them regularly just looking for ideas that have worked in all different markets. But writing an entire ad simply by swiping is often the lazy way (especially if it keeps you from doing your homework).

It misses out on having real empathy with the target market. The hardest part of any writing is knowing your audience.

Do your homework. Research:

– Forums
– Other Successful Sales letters
– Competitive Websites
– Top Selling Amazon Books
– Run surveys
– Pick up the phone and talk to them.

The better you know your audience, the more successful you’ll be.

What about when hype is successful?

I’m not debating that. Sometimes it works quite well, but most often it’s used as a poor substitute for really knowing the audience. And the question is rather you feel comfortable using it or not in your business.

When I recently interviewed Shaune Clarke, here is one of our exchanges:

Terry Dean: You mentioned a lot of your clients end up loving the copy and feeling so comfortable with the copy. You have a completely radically different approach. I’ve had coaching clients that came to me who didn’t know if they could ever be successful in internet marketing because they wouldn’t feel comfortable using ad copy like what they see being used online in some markets. What do you say to that?

Shaune Clarke: I know, and I tell you, Terry, thank you for saying this. I even said this to the SEO guy a couple days ago. Doing my copywriting coaching is, from a business perspective, not my most profitable venture, but I have to tell you, and people may have heard it in the call, I really feel like the industry needs to be changed. You telling me that just reinforces it to me.

It’s like here are these well-intentioned entrepreneurs with great products and great services to offer, and they’re not sure if they can do it because everybody’s saying this is how you have to do it.

I thank you, Terry, for the exposure. If I can be leading that charge that says you don’t have to do it that way, you really don’t. You can be more comfortable, more empathetic, more connecting, and that can be a great way to sell. It really can.

If you’d like to discover how you too can Sell More Without Hype through Indirect Persuasion, click here now…

In the full interview and transcript Shaune shares:

– One key question to ask while studying the market that reveals information that can’t be found any other way (not in magazines, swipe files, forums, or any of those other methods copywriting gurus teach).

– How to install multiple layers of assumptions subtly about you and your product directly into your target audience’s mind so…

– 4 “Generic” forms of resonance that plug-and-play in any market…boosting your profits simply by adding one or two each time.

Click here now…

Do You Have HyperCopyitis?

July 14, 2008

Hypercopyitis

Do you or anyone you know suffer from hypercopyitis?

Symptoms include:

– Excessive use of exclamation marks
– Uncontrollable bursts of power words such as “Astonishing” and “Confidential” even if they don’t make sense.
– Shortness of Breath related to run-on sentences
– So much yellow highlighting that it looks someone attacked your monitor with crayons
– Fake urgency that you have to buy in the next 10 minutes…unless of course you refresh your browser.
– The feeling of being worn out and put through the ringer after a couple of pages
– Over the top claims and exaggerated promises
– Every paragraph requires a common cliche or several adjectives.

Internet marketers are especially susceptible to this life threatening illness.

Once you’ve contracted this illness, the symptoms keep growing worse. Your claims keep growing. For example, in the internet business people may start out talking about how they made $100,000 their first year online. Next thing you know they’re showing Paypal statements for $367,378 for your first 10 days.

Eventually it’s another website about how you can earn $28,436,237 in the next 20 minutes simply by making a deposit in their unmarked Swiss bank account.

Like many other problems, the afflicted individuals often live in denial.

“It’s not that bad. I can quit anytime I want. Yeah, it’s true…sorta.”

There are even support groups, oops I mean outrageously profitable million dollar Mastermind groups, to help you cope with this condition.

It’s a deceptive problem because it can actually increase the profits of your business for a time. Sure, it costs you any real relationships not based on cash. But one of the first symptoms to show up is the all consuming desire for more money in exchange for everything else in your life (family, friends, health, etc.).

While some illnesses attack your immune system directly, this one is more subtle. It begins its attack by weakening your conscience. As hypercopyitis keep working on you, eventually your conscience becomes a shriveled up thing that simply doesn’t work anymore.

If you haven’t heard from your conscience in months, you may have a serious case of hypercopyitis. Find help immediately.

While we’re still not positive exactly how the illness spreads, we do recommend a few precautions:

#1 – Make sure to avoid locations where hypercopyitis is known to make its home.

This is a highly contagious disease. It has been known to spread extremely quickly when you’re in close personal contact such as at marketing guru seminars. You can also slowly contract it through reading a constant influx of overhyped marketing newsletters. Be careful what you subscribe to.

#2 – Ignore 1 to 6 month long product launches.

While you may pick up a few ideas for your business from these, you’re taking some serious risks with hypercopyitis. Their goal is to have you slobbering all over yourself in anticipation refreshing a website over and over again five minutes before noon to see if you can be first in line for the shearing (oops, sorry again, I mean fantastic never before seen offer).

#3 – Don’t allow a marketing consultant or copywriter to talk you into something you feel uncomfortable with.

As already mentioned, the first stages of hypercopyitis are very subtle. It comes from ignoring those gentle nudges in your conscience. You’ll test the “new approach” they recommend and it may increase your immediate sales. So you do it. Next time it will be a little easier. You’re being affected without even knowing it.

Recommended Treatment and Immunization:

This issue has been plaguing me for years. I’ve been on a mission. My goal…to find a writer who sells effectively using empathy instead of hype, exaggeration, and outright lies.

After all my research, I found an authentic writer who forms a deep connection with his audience to make the sale instead of using cheap tricks.

I interviewed him for 69 minutes about how he sells so well without hype. Unlike many interviews, he had me taking notes from the get-go.

Your prescription is to click here now to find out more about indirect persuasion and graceful selling

Disclaimer: Hypercopyitis is not a real disease and not recognized by any medical institution. The above is not real medical advice. :)

Do You Practice Specifics?

July 10, 2008

Practice specifics continually in your business.

This applies to daily operation of your business, goal setting, and copywriting. The more specific you are, the easier it is to pinpoint issues, reach your goals, and convince others to buy from you.

Here’s a quick example from my coaching program. This exchange is modeled after several recent ones, but is not word-for-word from any of them so all the guilty can stay nameless. If you’re a client reading this, it is the other client I’m talking about. :)

New Client: My product isn’t selling well.

Me: Ok. What do you mean? Is the conversion rate bad? How much traffic does the page have?

Coaching Client: We just don’t have many sales.

Me: What’s the conversion rate? How many visitors did the page receive last month and how many people purchased?

Coaching Client: I don’t know. It’s just bad.

Completely Frustrated Me: OK, let’s install something simple such as Google Analytics to at least track the traffic the set a “goal” on the customer thank you page. Then we can get some specific numbers to base our decisions on.

For someone whose site isn’t do well, it could be that they have 2,032 visitors and no one bought their product. Either the traffic sucks (this is totally possible), the offer sucks, or the ad copy sucks.

In other cases, I’ve found out they were converting 4% of their visitors into buyers, but they were only getting 32 visitors a week. So the problem is we need more traffic to the site.

If we don’t get down to specifics, we can’t pinpoint the right problem.

Be specific when you’re taking notes about the daily operation of your business. If you’re writing down how much time you spend on email each day, it’s not “about an hour.” I’ve found “about an hour” sometimes equals 3 or 4 hours. Your website averages 2.3 sales per day and converts at 3.23% percent over the past month, not “a few sales each day.”

Being specific forces yourself to be honest with yourself in your business.

Specifics in Goal Setting

What are the goals for your business? Hopefully it’s not simply to earn a six figure or seven figure income someday.

Exactly how much do you want to earn this year?

How much time will you invest each week to do this?

What are the overriding goals you need to reach this?

How many subscribers will you need?

How many customers?

What is the monthly, weekly, and daily steps you must take to reach this goal?

Be specific in your goals in every area.

Here’s an example outside of business. I decided I wanted to exercise more. That in itself is way too general. So I signed up and paid for a half marathon on September 20th. That gave me an end goal to run 13.1 miles on that day. Since I signed up I’ve been following a half marathon program with specific distances every day until then. So far my longest run has been 6 miles. Yes, ouch.

About half the time I start off each run by thinking what in the world have I gotten myself into, but I’ve been doing it because of the end goal. I’m about as slow as humanly possible, but that doesn’t matter. Without that deadline already set, I would have skipped at least 1/3rd of my workouts.

Specifics in Advertising

Specifics are much more believable than general statements.

For example, You didn’t lose about 20 pounds in the last 30 days. That sounds way too general, like you rounded up, or you just made it up. You lost 19 pounds in the last 29 days. That’s much more specific and believable.

Look for places you can be more specific in your stories and in your examples.

What if you really did lose 20 pounds in exactly 30 days? I’d probably drop it to the 19 pound mark and figure out how many days that was still (obviously if you lost 20 pounds there was a point where you had lost 19 pounds).

Sometimes you might even throw in a specific just in passing. Notice how I told you the half marathon is on September 20th. I could also add it is the yearly USAF one in Dayton, Ohio so no one has to ask.

Be specific in everything.

7 Steps to Overcome Procrastination

July 7, 2008

I have a problem with procrastination.

It’s so easy to do it later…or tomorrow…or next week.

It’s so much easier to stay in my comfort zone than to create that new project and create that new test.

In fact, even though I’ve accomplished quite a bit online, I still find myself facing the procrastination monster from time to time.

Here are 7 quick tips to help you overcome procrastination.

1. Make Action Notes

Create action notes when you’re studying any type of information product, listening to a teleconference, or attending a seminar.

It’s easy to simply make notes on all the great information you hear, but that won’t do your business any good. The only part of the information that does you good is the part you USE to build your business.

So create a list of action points. I do this when reading an ebook or any other form of information. If I write down just one action point, the product has been worthwhile. If I have an empty page when finished, it wasn’t worth my time or money.

What you have to be careful about is to make sure you don’t write dozens and dozens of “action points.” Those are notes. You’re going to be hard pressed to really pull out more than 3 action points at any time.

2. Get Rid of Fear

Part of the reason we procrastinate is because we’re afraid of what’s going to happen when we step out.

Some of us are afraid of failure…while others are actually afraid of success (their mind is blocking them).

For me, I’ve simply changed my attitude about “failure.” If a project doesn’t work, it isn’t a failure. It’s a test. Well I tested that and it didn’t work. Now I’ll test something else.

That way you’re not personalizing the “failure” to yourself. All marketing is simply a test that we keep learning and growing from.

Growing experiences aren’t always fun, but they happen.

3. Turn Off Distractions

You know you have to write that article, produce that video, or create that website. It’s so much easier though to live in a state of distraction where you’re constantly checking your email, answering the phone, or visiting your favorite forum.

Turn off all those distractions. Focus on the task at hand. When it’s time to write, sit down and write. Don’t edit. That comes later. Simply start typing whether it’s good or crap. It doesn’t matter. It’s taking the action.

4. Daily Plan

At the end of each day I spend about 3 to 5 minutes writing a quick schedule for tomorrow. When I slack on this, I end up wasting at least an hour trying to figure out what to do.

Don’t ask me why that is. I don’t know. Five minutes to write a schedule for tomorrow…an hour of wasted time if I try it in the morning.

What’s the primary goal tomorrow? How will I grow my business tomorrow? What’s a rough schedule for each hour tomorrow?

Real simple…and written on normal paper in a desktop calendar. I don’t even use any software for this basic planning.

5. Do the Most Profitable Activities First

What is the most profitable activity in your business? Do it first. It might be creating that new product, writing sales copy, or contacting potential partners for your upcoming project.

One activity that should come in every day is a marketing activity designed to generate new business (even when you’re busy). It could be as small as adding five new keyword phrases to your Adwords account, running one ezine ad, or submitting your post to social sites.

Which activity you take isn’t what I’m focusing on here. All I’m looking at is making sure you’re doing something to generate new business and/or buying visitors everyday.

6. Reward Yourself

Set milestones and reward yourself. Maybe your goal today is to write 10 articles. Your reward could be that you’re done for the day even if it only takes you 2 and a half hours.

Maybe it’s that item you wanted to buy if you finish the project by Wednesday. Maybe you get a 4 day weekend if you get done on Thursday.

Reward yourself with something when you reach your daily and weekly goals…even if it’s just a small item.

7. Accountability

Make yourself accountable to someone for what you want to accomplish. This could be a coach you work with or it could simply be a business friend. They tell you their weekly goals and you tell them yours.

Now you know you’re going to asked about how you did.

Have you ever tried working out alone compared to a workout partner? You’ll find yourself exercising even when you might have slipped because you can’t let your buddy down. Having someone who is relying on you in business can produce the same results.

For example, if you want to really make sure your project is done on time, make a commitment to others. Let those affiliates know when the new product is releasing. Tell your customers what is coming.

In other words, assign your own public accountability.

Independence Day

July 3, 2008

Independence Day
Tomorrow is the 4th of July in the US, also known as Independence Day.

The US declared their independence from Great Britain July 4, 1776. Celebration here usually involves cookouts, get together, and lots of noisy glowing objects (fireworks).

A quote from the Declaration of Independence:
“We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.

Earn More. Work Less. Enjoy Life!

Have you had your own personal independence day yet?

I remember my independence day…the day I knew I never had to go back to delivering pizzas, selling satellite dishes door-to-door, or signing people up for credit cards in front of SEARS.

I knew I could really do this – run a profitable business online that took care of all my needs and supplied me with the lifestyle I wanted.

It’s not just about the money. It’s about the lifestyle.

What is it you love to do?

If you didn’t have to make a living, what would you spend your time doing each day?

Imagine the perfect day for you…

Download the free goal setting worksheets here…

You might be in the same situation I was, working one dead end job after another, only going deeper in debt each month.

Many reports show that 60% of Americans have no savings at all. They’re one paycheck from being broke.

You may be one of them where you’re tied to your job…and sometimes it looks like there is no way out.

Or maybe you’re tied to your current lifestyle by golden handcuffs. The money is just too good. Those 60 hour work weeks are essential to the lifestyle you created for yourself. Or the success of that business you hate is holding you there where you simply can’t let go of the reins to release work to others.

Golden handcuffs are still handcuffs.

I want to encourage you today that, “Yes, you can do it.”

You can experience your own personal independence day.

Now I can’t promise you it will be easy. You’re going to have to stretch yourself. You’ll have to learn new skills. You’ll have to work very hard in the beginning to transform your life.

Freedom doesn’t come cheap.

Independence didn’t come cheap for those 4th of July celebrations. The cost was blood on both sides. It was a dire investment. And I’m thankful today for those who sacrificed.

You don’t have to invest as deeply as they did for us, but it will require an investment from you.

You have invest your attention. Instead of the TV, get into materials teaching you how to run your own business.

You have to invest your time. It takes consistent daily ACTION to make things happen. And it may not always happen quickly.

Offline businesses are willing to spend years just to get to break even. Yet many internet marketers expect to make a profit their very first week. It could happen, but I’d rather see you with a more practical long-term view for your business.

And it takes some money. You need training materials (but you don’t need everyone of those product launches). You’ll need to invest for hosting, autoresponder services, and possibly advertising.

Let’s kill that “Get Rich Quick” mentality once and for all.

An investment always comes before you receive your return on investment. You can’t harvest your crops until you plant them. It takes work to build an internet business, but that end goal of independence is worth it.

It’s time to celebrate!