Here are a few things worth remembering, if you want a successful business.
You do your best work when you accept that you have to earn, then RE-EARN, all those assets.
In today’s post, I have some ideas to share, which will help you spot genuine business opportunities and avoid getting ripped off.
I was prompted to write this, after Tim emailed me (that’s not his real name). Tim has wasted around $15000 on various sure things — programs, seminars, social media gurus, schemes, software, networks and memberships, which promised amazing results. None of them delivered.
Here’s how to avoid the same thing happening to you.
Every coin has 2 sides, heads and tails. The only exception here, is a fake coin. A forgery that’s used to trick people.
Business opportunities are exactly the same!
Every genuine business opportunity comes with a flip side. A down side. A chance it will fail. The only exception here are fake opportunities, the scams that swallow people in with the promise of a sure thing.
Scammers are masters of selling you the idea that something is risk free. They know that most people are risk averse, so they pitch you with promises, fake bank statements, fake testimonials and fake supporting evidence, which PROVES to you that their thing, is a sure thing. Ironically, the people taken in by the scams are the same people, who refuse to invest in legitimate business opportunities, because of the potential risk.
Three things to remember if you want to make better decisions:
If you think your friends will find this post useful, remember to share it with them. It could be exactly what they need right now, to stop them from being scammed!
Tip: Here’s some solid advice, with lots of examples: How t build a successful business.
The difference between good and great, is huge.
A great accountant, coach, lawyer, designer, etc., can sell her time for 3 times or 5 times more than a good one. She is also likely to have a waiting list, whilst her lower priced competitors are pestering people for leads at networking events.
Great service providers earn more, work with better clients and attract more referrals… far more referrals than they need. Why then, are there so many good providers out there and so few great ones?
It looks like this:
Good service providers and great service providers are separated not by intelligence or work ethic, but by their mindsets. This difference in their mindsets is reflected in their decisions, causing them and their work to either blend in, or stand out.
I was prompted to write today’s post, after reading Dr Seuss with my son. Here’s a quote he really enjoyed:
“You’re off to great places! Today is your day! Your mountain is waiting, so get on your way!”
That’s a very good example of the mindset behind great service providers. A little risky, sure… but massively more exciting and rewarding.
PS: To improve your business, let go of the Failing Familiar!
After reading this post, a reader emailed me to ask what made the designer I mentioned so remarkable. He said he wanted to know, so he could do the same and make his design business remarkable too. He explained that he needed to attract more high quality referrals.
The thing about being remarkable, is that it can’t be copied. If someone in your industry is doing something remarkable, and you copy their example, your copy isn’t remarkable. You’re in their shadow.
Allow me to explain.
When Sir Roger Bannister became the first person to run a mile in under 4 minutes, it was remarkable. When the next runner did it, breaking Bannister’s record, it wasn’t remarkable. The second guy was faster, but Bannister was remarkable, because he was the first person to reach that milestone of human achievement.
If you want to be remarkable, I’ve found that the best place to start, is to embrace the edges. I explain what that means here.
How valuable do you think a great logo is?
Most small business owners pay too little attention to the design of their logo. They will often opt for a cheap logo or one they made themselves. In this interesting and informative video, acclaimed designer Michael Bierut, explains the value of an effective logo. [If you can't see the video, click here.]
Bierut looks at what makes a logo endure over time and how some of the most memorable logos are the most simple.
Those of you interested in design will find the start of the video extremely interesting, when Bierut talks about working with his mentor, the late Massimo Vignelli. Vignelli was a design legend. Among other things, he designed both the signage for the New York subway and the New York subway map.
The video was created as part of a series called The Creative Influence, directed by Mario De Armas and produced by Sandbox Studios. You can watch the other videos in the series here.
Following yesterday’s post about building a successful blog, a number of readers emailed me with the same question. They wanted to know how I motivate myself to write and publish blog posts as often as I do.
Here’s the answer.
This quote from the late Steve Jobs answers that question beautifully:
If you are working on something exciting that you really care about, you don’t have to be pushed. The vision pulls you.
— Steve Jobs.
If your vision of blogging is that it’s a necessary evil, you will fail on every metric:
I saw it as a professional and personal development opportunity. I knew that in order for me to share useful information regularly, I needed to keep feeding my mind with useful information regularly. I quickly found another massive benefit to blogging, which is that writing regularly makes you a better communicator — a huge asset for anyone in business.
So, even if I failed to attract a commercially valuable reader community, I’d still be better informed and a better communicator, than I would have been had I not written all those articles. This made it impossible for me to fail.
If you’re struggling to publish posts regularly enough, don’t carry on working through gritted teeth — change your vision.
Yes, this works on every area of your business and your life… not just blogging.
This is a very important post.
If you want to get more from your blog, you may find the following information extremely useful. It’s the answer to a question, sent to me by one of my readers, Shannon. As it’s an extremely common problem, I offered to answer Shannon’s question via this blog post.
With her permission, I’d like to share a key part of her email with you:
“I’ve been blogging for close on three years now and have found the results frustrating to say the very least! [...] I have no idea what I’m doing wrong and I’ve followed the advice from (she mentioned a very well known blogging program) totally. I’m just about ready to quit. Can you take a look at my blog and tell me what I’m missing?”
I did take a quick look at her blog and it’s exactly the same as millions of other business blogs, following the same, general blogging advice.
Here’s what the challenge is and how to resolve it!
I’ve worked in marketing since 1987 and nothing I have used, studied or witnessed, comes close to the marketing power of an effective blog. Period.
So, why has Shannon and the vast majority of business owners, seen such poor results?
Without doubt, the main reason is that blogging is often touted, incorrectly, as the written equivalent of painting by numbers. In other words, you follow a set of rules and success will follow. This myth persists because it’s repeated by affiliate marketers, selling generic guides and programs on how to grow a successful business blog.
The polar opposite is actually true. The closer you follow the same ineffective set of rules as everyone else, the less likely you are to get anything worthwhile from your blog.
Here’s how I built one of the world’s most popular marketing blogs, by avoiding the rules.
Here are just a few of the things I noticed on Shanon’s blog, which are extremely common on struggling blogs – along with why I decided not to do the same.
The key thing to remember, is that your blog has no chance of standing out, when it’s just like all the others. Make your blog your own. Do it your way. If you’re following a guide or using tips from popular blogging sites, you will find it hard to be seen.
I also made a rule, which I have stuck to since summer 2008. It’s simply this:
I will only publish a post when I have something useful to share and I’ll make sure I find something useful, often.
This means I often write when it’s easier not to. Blogging is a primary business activity for me, rather than something I fit in. As a result, I write when I’m extremely busy, when I am tired and even when I’m ill.
The Internet is packed with sites that offer largely the same, general advice on how to build a successful blog.
The advice seems to make sense, until you consider that by following it, you become invisible – lost in an ocean of millions of other bloggers using the same, generic advice. If you’re following what they say, you will be able to identify with Shannon’s situation.
If you want your blog to get noticed and for your content to attract great readers and for your readership to grow, it’s essential to drop the generic approach.
In short: Your blog needs to be as individual as you are. Otherwise, you’re invisible.
Tip: This post asks an important question: Bloggers: Are you 1 question away from 10,000 daily readers?
There are certain people your business needs to avoid.
Here’s the thing: With a slick website and some testimonials (fake or otherwise), anyone can claim to be anything.
So, before you hire the services of an expert, ask them to back up their claims in a way that is both meaningful and measurable.
Only when you are 100% satisfied with their credentials, should you consider investing in them.