Jim's Marketing Blog

Marketing ideas to help you grow your business

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How to achieve the business and lifestyle you want, in 3 steps!

What’s going on in your business right now, is largely a reflection of your attitudes.

For example:

  • Your attitude to investing in professional help, will be directly reflected in the level of success you are experiencing right now.
  • Your attitude to your personal development, will be reflected in what you earn.  You don’t get paid for the hour you spend with a client, you get paid for THE VALUE you bring in that hour.
  • Your attitude to responsibility, will be reflected in the progress you are making or not making right now.  All the time we blame; our past, the economy, our parents or our star sign for our lack of progress, we will struggle.  It’s not the direction of the wind, but the way we set our sails that determines where we go!

Of course, all of this is governed by our attitude to change.  If we elect to complain about our results, but refuse to make the changes required for success, we remain the same.

If you have an area of your business, which is under-performing, change your attitudes regarding it.  With the right information and the decision to use that information, you can massively improve your results – even achieve life-changing results!  However, this will almost always require a shift in attitudes, regarding how you feel about paying for the help you need (and / or) your self-motivation.

The great news here, is that YOU control your attitudes.  No, it’s not easy to change an attitude, but it’s not that hard either; once you decide you want to get serious about your future.

If you want to sleep better at night, remove money worries, live where you want to live and enjoy the freedom that comes with it, try this basic 3 step process.  It’s what people who already enjoy all those things did:

STOP what you are currently doing!

Find someone with the answers you need and listen to them.

Use what they give you.

Let’s work together and grow your business. To find out more click here!

Photo: The Cleveland Kid

Financial security: Can anyone achieve it?

Yesterday’s post explained how I achieved financial security for life, in just 8 years.  It generated a lot of interest and some great questions, including this one:

Is the ability to achieve financial security for life something you are born with or something you can learn?”

I’m going to answer that question in today’s post!

Financial security: What is it?

You need to start, by defining financial security.  My definition is that you have enough money, that you never have to worry about money, because you are always able to generate more than you need.  I explain financial security in more detail here.

Others insist you need to have a particular amount in the bank to be secure.  The problem with that definition, is that even with a few million in the bank, you can lose it overnight with a bad investment.  More commonly, people can lose tens of millions over a period of years due to not understanding how money works; as many, many lottery winners and celebrities have discovered!

Financial security: Can anyone achieve it?

Ask anyone who has achieved it and they will tell you the same as I do; “Yes, almost anyone can achieve financial security for life!”

Ask people who are still struggling financially and you will get a range of answers, including suggestions that self-made financial successes have some kind of weird super-powers!  You don’t need special powers to be able to write a plan (or hire someone to write it) and then follow it!  That’s all that’s required.

One rhe reason so few people achieve it, is that they go looking in the wrong places.

Financial success seldom interrupts us

The masses expect great opportunities to be clear-cut and packaged.  Millions of misguided people go looking for “wealth” in $30 ebooks or seminars by wealth gurus.  The reality is very different.  The reality is that genuine opportunities DO NOT interrupt us, via email or a guru’s wealth program!  Financial security comes from investing the time learning the basics of business and putting those basics into action.

Here’s a tip – Make your own opportunities!

You certainly don’t have to be super-smart to become financially secure for life, but you do need to be smart enough not to blow your chances, by looking for non-existent silver bullets.

No one told me to start a blog, with the guarantee that if I invested the time and money required, it would generate a six figure income for my business every year.  I saw an opportunity and invested everything that was needed, for it to develop.  Most people wouldn’t invest the time or money I have into their blog.  For example, I decided to invest the time most people spend watching TV, writing these posts for you.  I decided to invest the money most people spend on cable TV, to get fast, reliable web hosting, so this site was always here for you.

The bottom line: You don’t need “special powers” to become financially secure for life.  You just need to be courageous enough to make your own opportunities and smart enough to invest the time and money required to make it happen.  Yes it genuinely is easy to do BUT it’s massively easier not to do, which is why so few people do it.

Let’s work together and grow your business. To find out more click here!

How to be financially secure for life in just 4 steps!

How did I go from extreme poverty to financial security for life, in just 8 years?

I get asked that question a lot and in today’s post, I am going to let you know.  It’s one of the shortest posts I will ever write, because the process is extremely easy to explain.  The challenge is putting what I am about to share with you into action.  I found it extremely easy to do, because the results were immediate and measurable.

Here’s the process.  Enjoy!

Firstly, we need to understand the basics:

  • You get paid for bringing value to the marketplace.
  • The greater your market value, the more the marketplace will pay you and the easier you will find it to attract the best clients.
  • So, to earn more than you earn today, you need to invest in becoming more than you are today.

The magic here, is that you are in charge of your personal and professional development.  All the information you need in order to increase your market value and your income, is already out there. The recipe is so simple, anyone can follow it:

  1. Read the books.
  2. Attend the seminars.
  3. Use what you learn.
  4. Repeat!

Read which books? Attend which seminars?

That’s part of your journey!  You see, the books that turned me on and got me so excited about my potential that I couldn’t sleep, are seen my others as being dull.  Similarly, books that were highly recommended to me, did nothing for me at all.  The best advice I can give, is to make a start for free with Think and Grow Rich by Napoleon Hill.  You can download a full, legal copy of the book using that link.

If you found this post useful, please remember to share it with your friends.

To your success!

Let’s work together and grow your business. To find out more click here!

Social networking: Do you make this common mistake?

Don’t let the numbers on social networks fool you!

You see, those numbers are far less a reflection of someone’s actual influence or talent, than many people seem to think.

For example, that social media guru with 100,000 followers, forced to spend most of his or her time away from their kids in order to make a living on the speaking circuit, may be less talented, than “some guy” who just followed you.

“Some guy” and the numbers

The wealthiest and best connected person I know joined Twitter last year.  He mainly uses it to keep up with his grown-up family, so I don’t bother following him.  10 minutes ago, I checked his Twitter account and he still has fewer than 70 followers.  For fun, I checked his klout score too and it’s extremely low, just as you’d expect.

Don’t feel too sorry for him though.  He’ll be fine.  His family are happy and healthy and he’s good for over £400million; according to The Sunday Times Rich List.

It’s about people

If my friend were to follow you (or me) right now, we’d hardly notice.  Using the typical social networking measurement tools, this self-made, multi millionaire businessman is just “some guy”; not an influencer, like that guru with droves of followers.

Behind each social networking account is a person.  When we allow ourselves to be influenced by their numbers instead of their unique human value, we risk listening to the wrong people and missing the REAL gold dust.

Let’s work together and grow your business. To find out more click here!

Photo: Letterpressdelicacies

How NOT to be invisible or look like a fool!

If you want to attract the attention of your marketplace as an expert, you should use your expertise to set yourself apart from the crowd.

Many small business owners do the opposite.  They simply copy or rip-off what they see a leader in their field doing.  This is a very bad move, as it guarantees they remain invisible.

I see this a lot online, even within my own niche.  Some marketing providers really struggle to get noticed, because they are not letting us see their creativity or originality.  Instead, they emulate the writing style, ideas and even the vocabulary of other marketing bloggers and authors.

Of course, what the marketplace needs to see, is their authentic message.

The irony of a purple cow

An ironic example of this came to my attention today, which prompted me to write this post.  A business owner emailed me, to say she had been looking for a marketing firm to handle a new project.  She found one, which used Seth Godin’s phrase purple cow, to describe their creative services.  For those who don’t know, the reason this is REALLY ironic, is that the phrase “purple cow”, means to be remarkable / original.

So, the marketing firm used a borrowed phrase from another marketer, to explain how creative they are!  As the emailer said; “Do these people not realize this makes them look like fools, to be offering creative services, without the creativity to market themselves, in their own words?”

Was the emailer a little harsh?  Yes, maybe.  But why put prospective clients in that position, needlessly?  They should have shown some confidence and used their own words to encourage her to get in touch.  These guys are professional copywriters, after all.

Thankfully, with so many people happy to blend into the background, anyone with the creativity and courage to stand out for all the right reasons, has the potential to achieve life-changing results!

Learn from the best, don’t copy them

Find your own style and develop your own unique message.  Be a student of the best, not a diluted version of them.  As a student, we learn and improve.  We increase our value and make progress.

We need to let our unique self stand out and shine for the marketplace to see.

Let’s work together and grow your business. To find out more click here!

Photo: The hills are alive

How to be more magical than David Copperfield

I went from being broke and living in a slum, the son of immigrants with no contacts, to being financially secure for life in just seven and a half years.  Here’s how I did it.  It’s all about the magic that happens when we learn to embrace change.

The magic

Change can be either positive or negative.  It is something we can either embrace or fear.  What we can’t do, however, is avoid change.  The lesson I learned at the age of 21, which was to transform my life forever, is that change is actually our friend.  Change brings improvement and progress.  In fact, the process of progress always begins with the need to change from what was failing us, to what will serve us.

This is why successful people and those who struggle have such different attitudes regarding change.

  • The happiest and most successful people I know, embrace change: They see change as an opportunity to grow.  They enjoy “living in the now” because they look to the future with excitement.
  • The gloomiest and least successful people I have met, fear change: They see change as a threat to their security.  They live in a state of apprehension, because they are fearful about what the future will bring.

The magical process of progress

Thankfully, the moment we change our mindset for the better, everything else changes too:

  • When we change from blaming others for our lack of success, to accepting it is always down to us, we start the process of progress.
  • When we change from talking about what we will do one day and start actually doing it, we start the process of progress.
  • When we change from seeing problems in our lives as proof that life sucks and start seeing them as opportunities to improve, we start the process of progress.
  • When we change from being the zombie who spends hours watching others achieve their dreams on our TV screens or computer monitors, to being on “the right side of the glass” with them, we start the process of progress.
  • When we change, everything else changes too.

Most importantly, when we change from wondering what we might be capable of, if we went for it 100%, to actually going for it, we start the process of life-transforming progress.  That’s where the real magic is!

To those of you who want more from life: I promise you, if you knew right now just what you could achieve and how your life would improve in every area, you would start that process of change this instant.

Let’s work together and grow your business. To find out more click here!

How to succeed in a world of failing small businesses

Someone asked me a great question recently:

“Why do some businesses, in the same industry, do really well during a recession, whilst others struggle or go broke?”

The set of the sail

My answer came from something my mentor shared with me.  Jim Rohn taught me that it is not the direction of the wind, but the way we set our sails that determines which way we go.  In other words, our success or failure is not the result of outside factors, but how we decide to work with what we have.  We can either stumble our way through business (and life) or we can deliberately move forward.

We can work to our plan, or do what the masses do and become a bit-part player in someone else’s plan.

Right now, you should be extremely excited about your future.  Even if things are bad, really bad, you are NEVER more than 1 idea away from turning it around.  Determine where you are right now.  Literally, grab a pen and a pad and write down your current situation.   Then, write down where you want to be.  Get specific.  Your objective then, is to use your creativity and sweat to take you from point (a) to point (b).

Not sure how to get from (a) to (b)?

Then ask someone who knows.  One of the key reasons for the extremely high small business failure rate, is the tendency for small business owners to refuse to pay for the professional help they (and their business) need.  I’ve met many small business owners, who “invest” in expensive cars that they can’t afford, yet their business is crying out for investment.  Their car is driven by someone who hasn’t a clue where they are going!

None of us can do this alone, if we want to succeed.

We all need the expertise of trusted professionals in order to proceed from where we are, to where we want to be.  I have around a dozen experts, who help me with everything from accountancy and legal advice, to keeping this blog running smoothly.  I have also paid for the best professional development and marketing tuition on the planet; learning from Jim Rohn, Jay Abraham and scores of others.  I have easily invested over £100,000 in my professional development over the past 25 years.

In the early days, I was penniless – broke.  All I could afford was a book or a tape.  I then read, and used, what I learned and was able to reinvest in “becoming more” than I was.  As I became more, I also became more valuable to the marketplace and was able to invest even more into my development.  I have maintained this approach to personal and professional development for 25 years and will continue to do so for the rest of my life.

Why?

Because if I hadn’t, I would be that marketing guy in your town; hustling for clients at networking events!  He works hard, but uses a very similar approach to marketing as all his (or her) competitors.  YOU have to be smarter than that!

Your future

So, where is your current approach to investing in your development taking you?  Do you know people, who have the answers you need, but have so far refused to invest in hiring them?

At any time, YOU can elect to change the set of your sail.  When you do, your life journey takes a very different route, deliberately planned to guide you to the life of your dreams.  The guy with the funding you need is a phone call away; so long as you know how to connect with him and earn his interest.  The lady with the marketing skills to turn your business around can’t help you, until you give her a call.

The bottom line: All the answers and help you need is out there.

Let’s work together and grow your business. To find out more click here!

Photo: Sailor Bill

The Robot and The Guinea Pig

Marketing genius Seth Godin made a great point with the title of his book; “All marketers tell stories.”  He’s right.  As small business owners, we each have many stories to tell, as we seek to connect with, inform and of course engage our marketplace.  Our ability to get the message right, so that our story has the desired impact, is pivotal to this.

A great story

My 5 year old son recently wrote a story, called; “The Robot and The Guinea Pig.”  His storytelling contained a number of elements that really impressed me.  His title was very catchy, which is why I used it here.  The story wasn’t too long and it showed a lot of creative thinking.  It’s wonderful to watch him develop his vocabulary and creativity.

I wrote a while back about Earl Nightingale and how he used to talk about the inoculation theory of education. It’s where young adults study, get qualified and then use their qualifications / graduation as a way to inoculate themselves from having to study any more.  I believe that as business owners, we need to adopt a very different approach.  We need to constantly strive to learn more about the elements of our business that matter, and in the 21st century, this includes the ability to create interesting content.

Over on Internet Marketing Jam, I talk a lot about content marketing.  One of the cornerstones of content marketing, is to produce valuable information, (blog posts, newsletters, videos, articles etc) as a way to inform your target market, build your reputation with them as an expert.  You then need to convert them from being a (passive) reader, to being an (active) participant.  You want them to get active, so they; subscribe to your blog, join your newsletter list, email you for information on your services or buy from you etc.

Building your storytelling muscles

With content playing such a pivotal part in the success of your marketing, it makes sense for you to invest as much time as possible, learning how to share your story and earn people’s interest.  For example, we should always bee seeking to improve how well we:

  • Capture people’s attention with our titles and headlines.
  • Inspire people to share our material with their social networks.
  • Compel people to pick up a phone and call us or email us for more information about our products or services.
  • Motivate people to buy from us or hire us.

I genuinely don’t believe that there are any quick fixes to learning how to be a great copywriter, but I do know how you can massively increase how well you write in the medium and longer term.

Are you ready?

Do it – And do it often!

One of the best ways to improve your ability to produce great content, is to practice.  Get your best written material out there and measure the feedback.  Listen to what the marketplace is telling you, something that is especially easy with online copywriting.  You can see, very clearly, how a page on your website or how a post on your blog is working.

Even basic tools like Google analytics will allow you to see how many people read that page and what they do once they arrive.  You can tell how long they stay on the page, and what exit route they take.  You can literally watch how “traffic” flows through your site and see what’s blocking people from getting in touch with you, subscribing to your newsletter or buying from you.

If your content is NOT getting the results you want, make one change and then measure the impact.  By repeating this process, it’s possible to significantly increase your online results and learn how to write the kind of content you need.

Do you have any tips for writing great content?  How about ideas on how people can boost their creativity?  Share your feedback (or story) with us!

Let’s work together and grow your business. To find out more click here!

 

Photo: Jan Tik

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