Author Archives: steve

Business Stages

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Here are the three stages: Start – Grow – Transform

Let’s take them apart to see where you are.

START

It’s certainly obvious that you must “start” before you can do anything else. But I’ve seen repeatedly how hopeful online entrepreneurs don’t start correctly. Here are the things that must be considered and satisfied for a successful start.

Decide what business you’re going to be in…

The huge mistake here is when someone thinks, “I’m in the ‘make money in any way possible’ business.” Quickest way to becoming a serial buyer of every lame tactic and hyped-up nonsense that floats across your inbox.

You need to know — before you start — what your online business will be. Will you be a blogger, a social media influencer, a video marketer, a product vendor, an affiliate, an ecommerce merchant? Not enough time here to go into every possibility, but the point is that you must decide on the type of business you want to build.

WHO is your audience?

Who do you need to attract to your business for it to be successful?

HOW will you make money?

What are the logical revenue sources for your business?

WHAT will you sell?

If your business is a transactional one, what, specifically, will be sold?

HOW will you get traffic?

Specifically, what are your traffic sources? Search engines, social referrals, paid traffic…? Keep in mind there are plenty of ways to generate traffic, and the free ones take the longest.

WHAT is needed to get that traffic?

Will you need content? Will you need to post often? Will you need a small bankroll for paid advertising? Don’t pass up this vital step…to ignore this is one of the biggest reasons for failure.

HOW will you convert traffic?

…into Buyers?

…into Subscribers?

…into Fans?

You need to have answers to these questions, as your success depends on it.

WHICH systems do you need?

I’m not talking about every flashy offer you see. I’m talking about core systems, from email providers, to hosting, to site and page builders, to reporting and tracking. Essential services that you must have, know them and don’t be afraid to invest in quality solutions.

WHAT will it cost you?

Don’t buy into the notion that a successful business can be created for free. It’s ridiculous. Investments are required. Sometimes those investments are in systems, in technical and/or creative services, in information, in coaching, in advertising… Get real here. Be honest with yourself, and dump the “money for nothing” mentality.

WHEN can you expect to begin making money?

It can take months to turn a profit. That’s just the facts. Yes, it can be done quicker, and you’ve seen testimonials on sales pages that say things like “I made $10k in a week.” Good for them. Don’t pin your hopes to that. Slow down and figure out your “burn rate,” which is the amount of money you can reasonably put into your business to make it work.

HOW MUCH will it require of you, personally?

So many things to do. Even the most amazing software requires someone to “do” something. Don’t mistake this question with “how many hours a week can you work.” This one is focused more on what toll the business will take on you.

WHAT are the technical and creative needs?

An online business has certain technical, creative and definitely strategic requirements. Perhaps you can handle every bit of it. It’s important that you can identify the needs of your business so you can plan for those needs and either fulfill them yourself or have them fulfilled by a professional.

WHAT is the right order of events?

There’s a difference in a list of ingredients and a recipe with those ingredients and instructions on the proper order to prepare the dish. Knowing the order in which you should do something is critical to building your business for success.

GROW

This stage implies that you have everything up and running. You’ve asked and answered all the questions above (plus others unique to your particular business) and things are underway. It’s like a restaurant the day after its Grand Opening. It’s the day-to-day business, and now is the time for true determination and focus.

This is the hardest stage, because it’s like you’ve berthed a baby, and now you just want to take a long nap. But the effort is all ahead of you. It’s not time to relax. In fact, now is the time for strategic consideration, as your new business may be a breath or two away from dying or shooting forward to big-time success.

Think about these things:

CONTENT

What types of content can you create on a weekly basis? These could be blog posts, reports, social media posts, videos, reviews.… The point of content is multi-fold: to generate traffic, increase interest in your business, to create credibility and loyalty.

TRAFFIC

With traffic, it’s best to master one traffic source first. I would amend that to say that you must master one on-demand traffic source first (such as driving social traffic, paid advertising and email list building). If you are strictly waiting for your pages and content to be found, it could be an excruciating and painful experience. In this Grow stage, you need to get as many eyeballs as possible on your revenue opportunities.

CONVERSIONS

With traffic coming in (even small amounts), paying attention to your metrics is critical. Knowing how visitors react to your offers is the only way to improve, and therefore, grow your business.

TRANSFORM

Finally, the Transform stage.

This stage can mean very different things to everyone reading this email, and it’s not necessarily about being at the very top of success. A transformation could be having a business that pays for itself, that generates enough profit to pay all your bills, or to have you quit a job and work full-time in your business.

It could be about SCALING and EXPANDING your Traffic Sources, your Product offerings.

It could be about adding Team Members, about Outsourcing, about improving your Systems.

To “transform” isn’t only about the transformation of your business. It’s equally, and possibly even more so, about the transformation of YOU.

 

24 Youtube Channels That Will Make You Smarter, Healthier, Happier, & Wealthier

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The media would like us to think Youtube is for kids or a place to go if you want to eradicate brain cells.

As stated in much better words here and by Casey Neistat here, Youtube is a threat to mainstream media. And their latest smear campaign has ignited the Youtube community.

This article is my contribution to the movement to prove that Youtube is not just prank videos, cats doing cute things, and fat unshowered gamers.

Like anything, it’s how YOU use it that dictates it’s value.

Youtube Channels That Make You Smarter

DNews is made by the folks who make the Discovery Channel. It’s full of really interesting short videos about history or science.

In a Nutshell makes videos that explain hard things like global energy, foreign policy, economics, and our existence on this planet in short easy to understand animations.

Kahn Academy is full of homework help for kids, or for adults like me who want to re-learn things they might not have paid much attention to in school so they can help their kids with their homework.

TED has hours and hours of the worlds smartest people discussing their ideas for world change.

I Like To Make Stuff is a made by an average joe who builds really neat things around his house. You can learn how to make secret doors, better book shelves, desks, all kinds of stuff.

Linus Tech Tips might not be for everyone, but if you ever want to understand how your Internet router works or what computer monitor is best to buy, this channel is for you. He has tons of explainer videos for every tech topic you can imagine. As well as reviews of most popular tech items.

Youtube Channels That Make You Healthier

FitLifeTV is made by Drew Canole, a juicing and whole foods expert. He has lots of videos about juicing for health, diet tips, fitness tips, and more.

Athlean X is made by pro-athlete fitness trainer Jeff Cavaliere. He has tons of videos about workouts and how the body works. His level of knowledge and experience is hard to match any where else.

Scooby1961 gives you a new video every Thursday designed to help you gain muscle, lose fat, and get ripped the right way. He’s a very honest guy and loves to shoot down the hypey and fraudulent stuff.

Blogilates is one for the ladies. Tons of workouts, meal ideas, and everything else a woman needs to stay motivated and on track with her health and fitness.

FatBurningMan is made by Abel James, a former fat guy who now looks like a fitness model. He has proven so many fat loss myths wrong. I love this channel. Tons of in-depth guidance on what to eat and what not to eat.

MindBodyGreen is full of interviews with health doctors and health scientists. Sometimes the advice is conflicting, but it teaches you that there are multiple ways to get the same result.

Youtube Channels That Make You Happier

Good Mythical Morning is a channel made two guys who do various comedy skits every morning. Ranging from eating extremely weird foods to their impressions of current news. It’s good clean fun for the whole family.

BuzzFeedVideo is a variety channel with mostly funny videos, sometimes weird videos and sometimes serious. Mostly funny though. With 7 million subscribers, it can’t be that bad right?

Tara Brach makes videos about meditation and life transformation. If you’re feeling depressed, stuck in a rut, or you just want to relieve stress this is a great channel to catch up on after work or on the weekends.

ET The Hip Hop Preacher literally changed my life. In 2010 when I was feeling lost and super low confidence, his words inspired me to bounce back. I suggest you start with his older stuff or this famous video of his that swept the Internet.

The School of Greatness by Lewis Howes is full of uplifting interviews that make you feel like anything is truly possible. Lewis covers everything from health to wealth and everything in between. He has a book coming out too that you should checkout here.

SoulPancake I’m not even sure how to describe this channel, but I dare you to try and watch one Kid President video without laughing. This channel is a bad mood destroyer.

Youtube Channels That Make You Wealthy

Shopify is actually a software for starting your own online store, but their Youtube channel is filled with “how to” videos also. If you’ve ever wanted to sell your shirts or sell anything online, this is a good place to start.

Alanis Business Academy is the Kahn Academy of business. Loaded with dozens, maybe even hundreds of videos explaining everything from how to read a profit & loss statement to writing a business plan.

Video Creators won’t directly make you wealthy, but with video marketing quickly becoming the #1 marketing channel I felt this was a must have. It doesn’t matter if you’re selling handcrafted items or houses or stocks, if you can make good videos it’ll help you make more money.

500 Startups is a business incubator/accelerator that has helped launched some of the webs most successful businesses. Their youtube channel is full of event recordings, interviews, how to vids, and more. Great for anyone starting a new business.

Jeffrey Gitomer’s Sales Training is a channel for anyone who wants to learn how to sell better. This is great for any consultants, coaches, real estate agents, and anyone else selling face to face or via the phone. Mastering sales is one of the best ways you can increase your wealth.

Clay Trader is a day trader who teaches people how to invest in the stock market. His channel is full of advice on how to read charts and he has lots of beginner tips too. If you like this you should also check out ProfitsRun, while not updated recently it still has a ton of great videos about buying stocks and options.

That’s 24 channels guaranteed to improve your life.

The next time you hear someone saying Youtube is a time suck, tell them they are wrong and show them this article.

And if you happen to be a business owner, I’ve got over 100 videos of my own on Youtube. My channel is all about online marketing. I cover topics ranging from Google Adwords to coming up with better blog topics.

If you got something out of this article, please help me reach more people by recommending or sharing this article.