Lost

As a business coach I know a lot lot about the feeling of being lost. Especially business owners tend to do too much at the same time and at a certain moment they loose their insight, their goals for that moment, they don’t know what to do anymore and a feeling of loosing it starts to kick in.

And I must confess, I have it too. Talking about it with my coach helps me to get me back on track again. Unfortunately not everybody with a business is able to afford an coach. Although I think a coach should be able to create a way to make it affordable, but that’s a different story.

There are a few ways you can prevent that feeling.

First of all if you are doing too much at the same time your brain will stop working. If you are trying to focus on one thing, trying to forget about other (small, but also important) things, but also get constantly interrupted, your brain will end up in a crash. And nothing else will come out of it anymore.

That dreadful feeling will kick in, overwhelm will start and nothing happens anymore. And you give up. After a while you start again, and it is so hard to get back in the game again that you wonder why you are doing it and you are thinking to giving up. Again. A negative spiral will start getting into your head.

Before you reach that point you have to find ways to refuel.

Almost everybody who has a business will say “Sorry, but I simply don’t have time for that”. My answer would be: “If you are working yourself into a burnout, what will be left of your business then?” Think about it. Is 10 minutes of your day worth the time to prevent a burnout? Is 10 minutes spend now on refueling a better investment in your business then to give up completely on your business in 2 or 3 years? Because you have to give it up, because of a burnout, because you cant handle it anymore?

So what are these ways you can prevent this?

One of them is establishing a quitting time and sticking to it. This way of giving yourself time to refuel, is something I figured out not that long ago. Now I do it every morning and it became a habit to do it. Just decide what time you will stop that day working. Spend some ease and quietness with family or friends in the time after. And even if it is just for a couple of hours, you already created something positive.

Another one, which is scientifically proven it prevents a lot of physical and mental problems and gives you a lot of advantages is meditation. Nice thing about meditation is that it doesn’t need to take you hours. Only 10 minutes just before you dive behind your computer and start your busy day working on your business, or 5 to 10 minutes during your lunch hour, will help you a lot. Especially in reducing stress.

If you like to learn more, I have a free webinar where I discus 5 ways to decrease stress and create healthy habit. Just follow the link.

Sign Up for my FREE webinar.

Are You on the Verge of Business Burnout?

A burnout is a very real problem, especially for solopreneurs. Even though partnerships can have their ups and downs, at least you have someone to handle some of the stress and responsibility. Solopreneurs are by themselves and feel the entire weight of their success on their lone shoulders. This large responsibility often leads these business owners to work 14+ hour days and lose track of what’s happening at home with their families. But is focusing so much attention on your business a wise decision?

No, not if you want to achieve a work/life balance that makes you and your family happy. Even if you’re single, making time for self-care and relaxation will improve your overall health and mental wellbeing. Let’s talk about the signs to look for that indicate you might be headed toward a burnout.

1. Insomnia. If your brain can’t shut down because you’re consumed with work, your sleep pattern will get disrupted, leaving you overtired, lacking energy, and possibly lacking the mental energy to make wise business decisions.

2. Procrastination. Do you cringe at the length of your daily to-do list? Did these tasks once excite you but now they make you want to crawl under a rock? Procrastination leads to missed deadlines and opportunities to promote your business.

3. Fatigue. The human body is only capable of handling so much stress on limited sleep. Certainly you’ve heard the phrase “burning the candle at both ends”? That’s what happens when you work yourself to the bone and don’t give your body and brain enough time to recover before starting another high-stress day. At some point your body will want to give up, causing severe fatigue and possibly other illnesses that will keep you out of the office.

4. Changes in appetite. For some people, stress causes them to overeat; for others, stress reduces their appetites. Neither extreme is good for your body. For optimal health and mental clarity, take lunch breaks away from the desk and choose natural, healthy food choices instead of fast food items.

5. Anxiety. High stress causes anxiety, which can cause crippling fear or other physical symptoms. Keep in mind: there’s a big difference between the anxiety you feel when stepping out of your comfort zone versus stress-induced anxiety that doesn’t seem to go away.

Think about this: as a solopreneur, if you are not physically able to run your business, what happens to it? Chances are, you’d have to close your doors and any streams of income you currently have will disappear. Let’s avoid this happening! Take care of your whole body, mind, and spirit. Take quiet time to relax. Get outdoors and breathe in some fresh air. Unplug for a whole weekend and live in the moment with your family. Reconnect with old friends. Start a hobby. The choices are limitless.

Follow these 5 Tips for Easy Self-care

In just a few days I’m hosting a webinar dedicated to this self-care topic. I discovered changes in my own business and my mindset once I started taking care of myself and living life outside of the office. My webinar is titled, “5 Ways to Practice Regular Self-Care, Even if You Think You Don’t Have Time” and I promise you don’t need to dedicate hours a day or make any pricey purchases. Implement these tips in the privacy of your home. Grab your seat today!

Sign Up for my FREE webinar


Are You On The Right Path?

Do one thing every day that scares you.

There are a number of factors to take into consideration when prepping yourself and your company to approach the largest clients you’ll ever work with. Are You On The Right Path?

Today we’re going to start with a brief look at the three paths every business faces and show you which one is the path to success. Then we’ll talk about the mindset it takes to attract the big fish.

There are three major paths a business can take:
• Snail Speed
• Shooting Star
• Catch the Big Fish

Snail Speed
Most business owners ended up working themselves into the ground without much reward or success. This is what happens when you fool yourself into thinking you will find quick success. You may also find yourself following this path when you are afraid of change.

Shooting Star
This describes a business that shoots to the top so fast you are overwhelmed and don’t have the right resources in place to adapt. This can also happen from being overwhelmed by small clients and not taking the time to find large clients, which will sustain your business after the small client sales slow.

Catch the Big Fish
This is the path that allows you to build at a steady pace that you can manage by not allowing your customers to outpace you.

You can do this by putting these tips to work:
– Attract, keep and lock in big clients.
– Integrate “big business” culture into your company and employees.
– Acquire the expertise you need to grow.Have the courage to make changes as you grow.

Now we are going to transition a bit and talk about the “big fish” mindset. It may sound easy to just find and catch that big fish, but if you are stuck in the small business mindset, you may find it harder than you think.

Think of all the benefits of aiming at bigger clients:
• Inexpensive
• Highly Profitable
• Longevity
• Security

In order to catch the big fish, you need to believe your company can make a difference with theirs. It’s easy to get into the thought that a large company doesn’t need anything from a small business like yours, but this is entirely wrong!

Once you take a look at how big companies operate, it’s important to know which ones are the best fit with your company. One of the best ways to get in the door is by knowing someone on the inside who can put in a good word for you.

If you’re not sure where to start and feel a little intimidated about catching big fish, try our FREE test drive to get help.

For information please email me by filling in this form:




Make your Message Pop!

There are 5 major components to good advertising or blog copy: (The order of these is essential to success)

  • Command Attention
  • Showcase Benefits of Products/Services
  • Prove the Benefits
  • Persuade People to Embrace the Benefits
  • Call to Action

People don’t like to be sold products or services. But they like it when a problem is going to be solved for them. Even when they didn’t realize they had a problem.

So, when you make a blog or advertisement, you need to think about the unique benefits your products/services offer and showcase that in a persuasive way. You need to emphasize results, not features.

Let’s take a minute to talk about each of these components:

  • Command Attention: This is usually accomplished with the headline. You need an attention-getter that makes people want to know more about your products/services. The best headlines give a vivid portrayal of the benefits or show how a problem can be avoided with your products/services. The headline is the advertisement for the advertisement.
  • Showcase Benefits: You have to showcase the benefits of your products and services and, more importantly, show how they will solve or prevent a problem. They need to know what’s in it for them. Include useful, factual and clear information to show precisely what the benefits are and how they are going to help the customer.
  • Offer Proof: This is where you prove what the advertisement is offering. You need to establish you have a method to deliver. Consider information that establishes credibility and past performance.
  • Persuade: You need to add compelling reasons for your potential customers to purchase your products/services. Use a hard sell approach and create scarcity. This will enact your potential customers to feel like they have to act now. Which leads into the last component.
  • Call to Action: You need to compel your potential customers to DO something. They need to check out your site, sign up for your newsletter, purchase your products, contact you about services…something. Offer a freebie-a booklet, sample, product, bonus, demo, consult, limited time price…the list goes on. There are lots of ways to get potential customers excited about ordering and help them feel like they are getting an amazing deal.

Good advertisements include all of these components and are not complete without any of them. You can sit down and think through any one of these components, then figure out how to best place them together for the most effectiveness. We can help you with this too.

Try our FREE test drive to learn how to put together great advertisements from some of the best in the business.

Learn how to generate all the leads your business can handle and increase your sales…
WITHOUT spending a dime on marketing or advertising.
www.smallbusiness-academy.com

Photo by Drew Beamer on Unsplash

Direct Response or Bust!

Direct response marketing is a marketing that demands a direct response from your potential customers.

This type of marketing is used to answer questions, present your branding, products and the reason you do what you do. Customers love this, as they are offered the opportunity to response, whether that be in the way of signing up for a newsletter, posting a comment on your site or blog, or purchasing a product from you.

So, what does direct response marketing look like? Well, it comes in many forms, including:

  • Direct mail
  • Print ads
  • Radio and TV ads
  • Coupons or other incentives
  • Telemarketing

Some of the advantages of direct marketing are:

  • A great way to use free time during lulls in business.
  • Productive way to communicate and empower you to create more relationships.
  • Great way to up- and cross-sell to current customers.
  • Low cost way to rustle up new business.
  • Used as leverage to turn small sales into large sales.
  • Supplement your current marketing program.
  • Cost-effective way to reach target markets.
  • Offers measurable results.
  • Reach outside your local area for new business.
  • Increase the effectiveness of your sales force.

These are all great things that can come from just taking a few simple steps to putting together a direct response marketing plan and executing it.

“I honestly don’t think you’ll ever find a safer, lower-risk, higher-profit method of increasing your business or profession than direct-response marketing.” – Jay Abraham

Direct response marketing is one of the best ways to launch your business on a large scale and reach out to everyone in your target market whether they are in your local area or not. Our FREE test drive can help you put together a great direct response marketing plan and get you on your way to heightened success.

Learn how to generate all the leads your business can handle…
WITHOUT spending a cent on marketing or advertising.
www.smallbusiness-academy.com

Photo by Nong Vang on Unsplash

Being Extremely Productive…Or Not.

Do you have a problem like that? Being extremely productive?

Being extremely productive isn’t quiet a problem, successful people are extremely productive. They love to work, they love to be busy with  a lot of other things.

I am busy with a lot of things too, but productivity isn’t always one of them. I am slowly changing myself. Pushing myself to do the productive things instead of the un-productive things, but it can be hard sometimes. Changing bad habits isn’t something that will be done overnight.

Personally I think that these bad habit started a long time ago, when I had a job which didn’t really interested me, but I earned a lot with it. The days were long, commute of an hour in the morning and an hour in the evening wasn’t much fun either and at home their wasn’t much more left then taking care of the dogs, making my own diner and sleep.

I tried to change my career, but again choose a career which was nice to do and my income would be great, but it wasn’t my passion. Children, moving 3 times to a different country and giving up what I was doing before didn’t help either.

Now I found what I love to do. What gives me a good feeling inside. I had a lot to learn. It was a long road to go. I still have to change some things about myself to be able to do my work even better. But more important it gives me that good feeling which comes from inside. A feeling to be proud of myself when I helped someone to be successful with their life.

I think they call it PASSION.

If you like to know more, just contact me.

Distractions

What do I mean with “Distractions”?

  • Distraction is checking your phone 5 times a day (or more) to see if there is a notification for you at Facebook, Instagram, Twitter or any other social media platform.
  • Distraction is checking your phone 5 times a day to see if you have new mail.
  • Distraction is having the TV turned on because otherwise it’s so quiet in the house.
  • Distraction is also starting to watering the plants because the need water now.
  • Distraction is starting to put away the clutter which was there already 3 hours ago.

So in short distraction is everything you use as an excuse to NOT do the work you were planning to do that day. Or simply it makes it impossible for you to finally finish that one thing, which you are trying to finish for days or maybe even weeks.

I am guilty of it. I procrastinate. Big time!! I am working on a webinar for weeks now and it is still not finished. Every time something else “comes up”. At least I know why. That is a start. And I try to do some other useful things like writing this blog. As an excuse.

But the stupid reason I have (I have to add audio and I hate my own voice) doesn’t go away by doing other things. At one point I have to do it. I have to make that audio if I ever wants to find more clients and earn money. I can’t put it off forever.

An other reason why distraction isn’t good is because it cost you a lot of valuable time. Checking social media isn’t that big of a deal, but 9 out of 10 times it’s not just checking. You look at few posts more, make a comment here and there, like a couple of post, etc. Before you know it half an hour or an hour has past. Waste of time….

There are a couple of things which can make life easier for you.

  • Start with turning off these annoying notifications. Really, you can without them.
  • Go sit in a room where you don’t see the mess, the plants, etc.
  • Leave your phone in another room.
  • Set a timer for instance at an hour. That’s the time you have just for your work. No phone at all.
  • Turn off the TV.
  • And if you really want to save a lot of time: Only check your phone once a day. Just at the end of the day and not more. Really, your friends on Facebook will survive if you like their post only at the end of the day!! The world will still be in one piece if you check your email only once a day.

Try it! See for yourself that you will be way more productive if you end your distractions!!

Response and Follow Up

On regular basis I receive questions for more information. Through this website or through my Facebook page or my advertisements.

“How can you help me to earn a lot of money?”, “Can you help me bring my business online?”,  “Can you help me to be more successful?”,  “What are you offering precisely?”

I love it when people ask all these questions and I try to answer them as good as possible. I know that I get too enthusiastic sometimes and I send a lot of information. But I believe that it is better to send all the information than just half the information.

Unfortunately a lot of times I don’t get any response back. Now I know people are busy and have a lot on their minds. Or they read the email and then forget to respond. Or leave it and like to read it later and forget about it. I do the same.

And that is why following up so important.

I must confess I am terrible at it. I really have to put it in my agenda when I have to follow up and with who. And sometimes I have to send 3 or 4 emails (or more) after the first one to finally get that response. I find that very frustrating, but it is part of becoming successful with your business.

Years ago I was extremely disappointed when somebody didn’t responded after the first email. I didn’t know that following up was so important. My response in my head was “oh, they are not interested in me anymore. They must have find someone else”.

Funny thing is that I always related it to me. I was rejected, not my product.

I learned a lot since. And the most important lesson was that I had to change my mindset and I had to keep on sending out these emails. And so should you!

Why mindset? You have to learn that it is not about you. Most people are not rejecting your or even your product. They are interested in you and your product, otherwise they would not have asked you for information. They just are busy. Or their enthusiasm is a bit less then when they asked you for more info. Or…. There can be a million reasons. Always keep in mind that they are interested in you and your product otherwise they won’t have send you an email.

Keep sending these emails. Even if you have to send out 7 or 10 emails. You will finally get your response. Or they tell you to stop sending your mails. Or they are finally ready to build a relationship with you. Just don’t give up. Send them new information. Send them something interesting they can use. Use your imagination. (But don’t try to sell or spam!!)

Like to learn more about how to write emails? Then follow this link: