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[Case Study] My Precise Strategy on How to Start a Blog

[Case Study] My Precise Strategy on How to Start a Blog

After all the mistakes I made with my first blog (aka my “starter” blog), I decided I needed a better plan for how to start a blog successfully.

In fact, I would say knowing how to start a blog on the right foot is crucial. Even when you do everything correctly, it can still take months to start seeing results.

And, if you don’t start out right, it will take even longer.

(Of course, the flip side is once you start seeing results, you’ll continue to, even if you aren’t always on top of posting.)

Even knowing it will take time to see results, it cam still be difficult to keep moving forward when you have little to nothing to show for it (trust me, I know, I just went through it). It’s even worse when you’re also listening to a nagging little voice in the back of your head questioning whether you’re doing it right.

Because, hands down, worst of all, is finding out months down the road (after expending all that wasted time and creative energy) that you did, indeed, do things wrong and that’s the reason why you’re not seeing results.

That’s why I’m going to walk you through my precise strategy on how to start a blog today—so you can duplicate it and experience the same type of success I am with my new blog, LoveBasedBiz.com. I started this blog in December 2016, and it took about a year to start seeing results. But now, I’m finally getting the traction and momentum I was looking for.

That said, I think I could have seen results months sooner if I hadn’t gone through a “crisis of faith” about six months in. I started doubting myself and was seriously considering throwing in the towel.

I didn’t let myself stop, but I did cut back on how much I was posting each week.

Looking back, I see that was a mistake—one I don’t want you to make.

Here’s the thing: it’s still totally possible to grow a blog from scratch. It’s also totally possible to still use SEO (search engine optimization) and attract organic visitors to your blog.

AND if you set your blog up right, it’s also possible to make money from it. (In my case, I’m selling books and products with my blog.)

All you need is the right strategy.

(Now, that said, I do want to add that you can always find someone who isn’t following one or all of these steps, and is still rocking it with his/her blog. Unicorns exist. However, I do believe the vast majority of folks who decide to disregard what I say below are likely going to be frustrated with their blogging efforts.)

How to Start a Blog Step 1: Get clear on your message.

Gone are the days when you could create a business around rehashing what other experts and gurus teach, or even worse, relying on “new” to cut through the marketing clutter and give you momentum.

Now, you really need to get clear on your unique voice and message to succeed as an entrepreneur.

Yes, you have one (trust me). If you’re feeling called to change the world with your unique gift (even if you’re not entirely sure what that gift is), you have something to share.

You just have to find it.

Chances are it’s some sort of combination of what you find super easy to do and your personal story and life experiences (including your core wounds and/or your shadows). It’s definitely worth the time and energy to dig in and get clear on what you’re meant to bring forward into the world.

For myself, I knew I needed to get the love-based message out in a big way.

How to Start a Blog Step 2: Get clear on what your blog is about.

Yes, yes, I’m also disappointed that people aren’t rushing to my blog to read my personal musings on whatever pops into my head, no matter if it’s related to my overall brand and message or not.

But, unless you’re super famous and/or have a big following, that’s life.

Your visitors are coming to you because they expect a certain experience on your blog. Maybe it’s content. Maybe it’s entertainment. Maybe it’s both.

If you don’t provide that experience consistently, they’ll likely stop coming.

Now, that doesn’t mean you can’t experiment. It also doesn’t mean your blog can’t evolve over time. What it DOES mean is that getting clear on what your blog is about, and then aligning your content with it is the key to success.

For myself, this was easy. I knew I was being called to get the love-based message out into the world in a bigger way, so that’s what my blog needed to be about.

How to Start a Blog Step 3: Choose a blog template that’s both mobile friendly and looks up to date. (And, get comfortable with the idea you’re probably going to have to update it in a few years.)

With more and more people accessing the web using phones and tablets, if you don’t have a mobile-responsive blog, you’re just asking to be ignored by a lot of potential visitors.

How to Start a Blog Step 4: Write posts around popular keywords.

If you want to build up your organic traffic (“organic traffic” refers to the posts that will show up organically when your ideal clients are searching the web using those keywords), this is non-negotiable. (I’ll dig into this strategy in more detail in a future post, but in short, find popular keywords that don’t have a lot of competition, and write your posts around them.)

How to Start a Blog Step 5: Write high-quality, longer posts.

I can’t stress this enough. Just throwing up a fast, poorly-written, poorly-thought-out article is NOT going to help you over the long haul. Take time to create solid content, even if it means you can’t post as often as you like.

Also, I suggest writing at least one long post a week (and by long, I mean between 1,000 and 2,000 words). Studies show that longer posts get shared more on social media, and get more SEO love.

How to Start a Blog Step 6: Use graphics and pictures.

I haven’t done a lot with infographics (yet) but Michelle Schaefer, one of the blogging mentors I’ve followed, swears by them. For myself, I’ve definitely found that having unique pictures (I take a lot of my own pictures) encourages people to click and read.

How to Start a Blog Step 7: Consider integrating podcasts and/or videos.

Not all of your ideal prospects like to read. Not all want to listen to podcasts or watch videos.

That’s why offering multiple modalities for consuming your content can make your blog more accessible and desirable to a bigger audience.

In addition, you’ll also open up more platforms to advertise your blog on. If you have a podcast, you can then advertise your blog on all the different podcast platforms. If you have videos, you can build your YouTube channel and presence.

Which leads me to the next step …

How to Start a Blog Step 8: Have a social media strategy in place.

Alas, blogs don’t promote themselves (at least not anymore). Along with setting aside time to write your blog (or have it written for you), you’re also going to have to set aside time to promote your blog (or have a marketing assistant promote it for you).

Luckily, promoting your blog is an excellent way to also promote your business—especially if it’s set up correctly so it reflects your brand and message. When people visit your blog to read your juicy content, they also get a taste of what it would be like to work with you on a deeper level. Hands down, this is one of the best ways to market your products, programs, and services.

People don’t want to be hit over the head (especially on social media) with your sales messages. But providing a link to a meaty blog article or podcast or video is something they may even end up thanking you for.

So, what’s the best way to promote your blog? Social media of course. Facebook, Linked In, Instagram, and Twitter can all be easily incorporated into your marketing strategy. In addition, you may want to take a serious look at Pinterest. I’ve been playing around with it more, and a lot of my research points to Pinterest as being one of the best platforms to promote your blog.

How to Start a Blog Step 9: Be clear on the action you want your visitors to take, and then make sure you ASK them to take that action.

Building your email subscriber list should always be one of your biggest calls to action on your blog. But, I also think you should consider soft selling your products, programs, and services. Now, that doesn’t mean you should expect someone to read a blog post and buy a year-long, high-end coaching program. But, you can certainly seed the results of that coaching program on your blog, which can get your ideal prospects to start to consider working with you.

If you’re an author, blogs are an excellent way to sell books (both fiction and nonfiction), so definitely incorporate them.

So, there you have it—how you can set up your blog for more success. And, if you’d like to dig into even more Internet Marketing (including setting up your online marketing plan), you may want to check out my “Love-Based Online Marketing” book available at most online retailers.

My Big 2017 Marketing Campaign Success Story

My Big 2017 Marketing Campaign Success Story

In the fall of 2016, I came to a realization. The main marketing campaign I had been focusing on for much of my entrepreneurial life wasn’t working the way I had intended.

This wasn’t a big surprise. For years, I had been watching the trends in the information Marketing/Internet Marketing industries and I could see we were headed for a reckoning.

And I had a feeling the reckoning would be sooner rather than later.

“Business as usual” (at least the way it had been defined in this wacky online world I had chosen to do business in) wasn’t going to be as effective as it once was.

It was time to change to a different marketing campaign.

And, that’s what I spent 2017 building from scratch—a new marketing campaign for my business that was based on a solid, long-term marketing strategy that, once I got it in place, would continue to bring ideal clients, customers, and buyers into my business organically … and I wouldn’t even have to spend advertising dollars to make it work. (Although advertising certainly would make speed up the process, it wasn’t a requirement.)

It took a year to finally start seeing results.

I’m going to say right now it wasn’t easy.

In fact, there were times it was downright frustrating. Mostly because I had to battle my secret fears and demons. There’s nothing like having all your inner doubts surface six months into a long-term marketing strategy, even though you KNOW it may take months and months to see results, and you’ve told yourself you’re good with it.

This isn’t going to work.

You’re wasting your time.

Every single successful business owner you know would tell you you’re being foolish. Maybe they are right.

Maybe it’s time to chuck in the towel and do something else.

And on and on.

Nevertheless, I kept going.

Even though my fear-based emotions kept trying to stop me.

Fear, worry, doubt, shame, anger, even grief.

I felt the emotions, let them move through me, and kept going.

So, yes, I will share precisely what I did, but before I do that, I want to set the stage a bit. Because what I did may not be the right strategy for you and your specific business, goals, and dreams.

And, what I DON’T want to happen is for you to read what I did, and then dismiss it. “Oh, that’s all?” Because if you do, I feel like you’d be missing the larger point, which is:

Now, more than EVER, you need to have a long-term marketing strategy in place if you want to have any hope in building a solid, successful, profitable business over the long haul.

HOWEVER, that does NOT mean it’s your ONLY marketing strategy. Long-term marketing strategies are NOT designed to bring in money right now. They’re designed to attract a steady stream of warm ideal clients, customers, and buyers to your business, which of course puts your business on a lot more solid footing than if you don’t have a warm audience of ideal prospects who love to hear from you. But they’re not designed to bring in cash NOW.

So, if you’re looking for an immediate cash infusion, you may need to modify my marketing campaign so it’s less aggressive. This way, you’ll have time to focus on short-term marketing strategies to keep income flowing in, at the same time.

Okay, let’s talk marketing campaign.

How I Decided on My New Marketing Campaign

1. One of my big missions is to get the love-based philosophy out into the world in a massive way. Therefore, for me, it was important that the marketing campaign I chose not only be scalable, but also built for the masses.

For you, that may not be the case. Maybe you just want to have a profitable coaching business and are happy if you have a dozen or so highly-invested coaching clients at any one time. Following my marketing campaign may be overkill for you.

Ask yourself the following questions:

  • What is my BIG vision for my business?
  • How big do I really want to take it?
  • Do I really want a seven-fugure business or a multi-seven-figure business (which requires hiring a big team)? Or is something smaller more my style?
  • Is the marketing campaign I’ve chosen a match for my vision?

(Note: My “How to Start a Business You Love AND That Loves You Back” is full of questions like these to help you get very clear on what you want to invest your time, money, energy and life force building. It’s free and you can grab your copy at the below link.)

2. Next, I got very clear on my message and who I am here to serve. For me, this was a no-brainer, because my mission is to get the love-based philosophy out into the world. I knew whatever I chose had to focus around that message.

For you, the questions you need to be asking for yourself:

  • Am I clear on my message?
  • Do I HAVE a clear message that I can easily communicate in my marketing?

3. Lastly, I set a clear goal based on the different ways money would flow to me using the marketing campaign—everything from books and low-end products to sponsorships to one-on-one services. I was very clear on how I would fund the campaign not only while I was building it, but also what it would look like once it was built.

For you, ask yourself:

  • Am I clear on my different offers?
  • What type of business model do I want to build? (I.e. Are you just interested in one-on-one services, or do you want to sell more products and group programs, or a combination, or what exactly?)
  • Will this marketing campaign fit into my business model?

Okay, are you wondering what my marketing campaign was, precisely?

Drum roll please …

I started a new blog from scratch.

(Yes, I can hear everyone saying, “Well, geez, is that all?”)

I started this blog, the LoveBasedBiz.com around December2016/January 2017.

Why?

Well, my first blog, which is on my MichelePW.com site, was actually a very old blog with some very old (and valuable) back links. I’m still getting organic traffic to that blog even now without any new posts for over a year.

But, I had made tons and tons of mistakes with it as well.

I felt like those mistakes were hindering my organic SEO reach—I had reached a ceiling because of them. (Another way to look at this of course is that, despite my mistakes, I still ended up with more organic traffic than that blog likely deserves.)

Plus, there was just so much old energy in that blog that I didn’t think a fresh approach would overcome.

I wanted to start fresh. Yes, even though I heard the same things many of you do … “It’s too difficult to start a new blog and get any organic traffic from it …. Blogs are dead … They’re too much work/take too long/not worth the return on investment.”

(Not to mention blogs are unsexy and not nearly as hot as complicated Facebook ad funnels. Right?)

The difference is, I didn’t really believe any of that.

I KNOW content marketing still works. And, it’s likely ALWAYS going to work (especially if you focus on crafting high-quality content and not just crap you throw up really fast).

I also know, since I can see it first-hand with my old blog, that once you’ve got a blog established, visitors continue to visit … EVEN if you stop posting.

Now, there’s no question a blog does require work and commitment. And, I knew it was a long-term strategy, so I knew it would likely take me a year (or longer) to get a fresh new one set up.

AND the past six months were still brutal. I doubted myself and this course of action, wondering if I was wasting precious time that I should have been focusing on something else.

But I kept going.

Other Things I Did to Set My New Blog up for Success:

  1. I was very strategic about my posting.
  2. I set up a schedule where I was posting three times a week—a podcast episode, a written blog post, and a video blog post. (Although, I must confess, there were a few months near the end of 2017 when I dropped down to only two posts a week, because it was difficult to keep up with the three posts a week when I wasn’t yet seeing results).
  3. I was consistent and followed my schedule.

My Results

After only about one year, I’m finally getting some decent SEO/organic traffic momentum, plus my overall visitors are almost equal to my old blog’s heyday (when I was posting regularly) AND I have A LOT more page views (probably triple). While those are great wins, what’s even better is the FINANCIAL win—I wanted to more sell more of my love-based books, and that’s precisely what’s been happening.

If you’d like to learn more about what I did, check out this post where I walk you through the precise blog strategy I used to set up this blog for success, Clearly it’s a great resource for anyone who is interested in having their own successful blog, but I also included a few takeaways for everyone, no matter what you pick as your main long-term marketing strategy.

Main Takeaways

  1. Stay the course. Don’t give up in the middle, even if you have a lot of doubts and fears come up. If you know what you’re doing is going to take some time to take off, then give it the time it needs. (And, quite honestly, most successful strategies in business OR in life need time to fully mature.)
  2. Be wary of what you see in advertising and marketing messages. There’s one right now I see on Facebook that talks about how building an audience is a waste of time. (This one irks me so much I’m going to do a full post on it in the future.) Remember, marketing gurus need to make money, too, and as blogs DO take both time and work to get going, it’s an easy tactic to cut down in favor of whatever they’re trying to sell you. So, don’t believe the hype. Do you own research on what you think is the best marketing strategy for you, and give it the time and love it needs to succeed.
  3. 3. No matter what marketing campaign you pick, being strategic—setting up a regular schedule and staying the course—WILL help you succeed.

And, if you want to learn more about how you can fall in love with your Internet marketing strategies, you may want to check out my “Love-Based Online Marketing” book available at most online retailers.

[Checklist] How to Grow Your Online Social Influence

[Checklist] How to Grow Your Online Social Influence

One of the best ways to supercharge your business growth and your income (while getting your message out there in a bigger way) is to grow you online social influence.

After all, when you have a strong online social influence, you’ve built credibility and visibility around your expertise, which means your ideal clients are likely seeking you out, excited to work with you. You probably also enjoy the results you get from the power of word of mouth marketing to sell your products, services, book, programs and more.

But be warned—building your online influence isn’t easy (and there are some hard truths you should know about it before you even get started, which I share here). The good news is there IS a path you can follow if you’re ready to step up and start growing your social influence.

That’s why I’ve created this checklist—to show you that path, and to provide you with links to additional articles and resources, so you can begin developing your social influence.

The Checklist:

_____ Are you clear—crystal clear—on your business?

It is crucial to be clear on:

* Your message, and

* Who you serve.

If you don’t have absolute clarity on both your message and your ideal client, it’s going to be very difficult, if not impossible, to actually grow your social influence.

(Note—in my “How to Start a Business You Love AND That Loves You Back” book, you’ll find a whole host of questions to help you get clear on the precise business you want to build. You can grab your copy for free here.)

_____ Have you developed your own unique voice?

People will resonate with you (and want to follow you) when:

* They fall in love with your message, and

* How you communicate your message.

The way you communicate your message is just as important as your message itself.

For example—many self-help experts have a message around love being the most powerful force in the world. But, the ones who rise to the top have a distinct way of communicating that message so it rises to the top.

Most health experts have a similar message around healthy habits. So how do they differentiate themselves from their competition? By communicating that message in their own unique voice.

So, how do you develop your unique voice?

Two quick tips are to read more and write more. (The more you read and the more you write, the more you’ll start to develop your unique voice.) But most importantly, don’t be afraid to share your personality. Let people see the real you—your quirks, your loves, your rants, your vulnerabilities. That’s what people want to see—the real you.

_____ Are you in integrity with your message?

There’s nothing less persuasive or compelling than being a hypocrite.

Really, who wants to follow a hypocrite? (Think of Dante’s Inferno—he devoted a whole circle of hell just to hypocrites.)

So, whatever your message is, it’s critical to make sure both you and your business are aligned with that message.

Now that doesn’t necessarily mean you need to be aligned 100% of the time. For instance, if you’re a health coach, you can occasionally pig out on chocolate cake. But, then be honest about it. Let people know you’re human, and you occasionally cheat and it’s okay if they occasionally cheat. (In fact, sharing your flaws and being honest about them will likely make you even more relatable to prospects.)

But, if you’re a health coach and you have some nasty health habits you’re not owning up to, people are going to sense that you’re out of integrity. They might not know why, exactly, but they’ll feel something is off. And they won’t be all that interested in following you.

_____ Are you making a difference in people’s lives?

Most people want to follow someone they can look up to, right?

One great way to be that type of person is to make a difference in people’s lives.

A lot of people have a dream or a goal to leave the world a better place than they found it, and if you’re working toward that vision, people will be naturally attracted to you, so they can learn from you.

In addition, if you help people, those people are going to be more inclined to follow you.

I also don’t think it’s a coincidence that a key trait for most successful people is their generosity and commitment to being of service to others. So, if you want to be successful and grow your social influence, upping your generosity may be exactly what you need to do.

_____ Are you putting your best work out there?

For years, the prevailing wisdom we heard as entrepreneurs was to focus on your marketing, rather than the quality of your work, because “he who has the best marketing wins.”

That actually hasn’t proven to be completely true. Yes, there’s no question you still need marketing, and having a solid marketing plan you consistently follow will go a long way to help you attract a steady stream of clients, customers, and buyers.

But, marketing on its own isn’t going to cut it. You also need to make sure you’re putting your best work out there.
Marketing can help you get a first-time buyer, yes. But, if that buyer has a bad experience, almost no amount of marketing will convince him or her to come back a second time.

In addition, if everyone has good marketing, then the only thing that separates one business from another is the quality of what they’re offering.

_____Have you chosen the right communication vehicle for you?

Having a large social influence typically means having a lot of followers.

So, if you want to have a lot of followers, you need something for them to follow. (Makes sense, right?)

Whether it’s a blog or a podcast or a youtube channel or a Facebook group or something else (or even a combination of vehicles) you’re likely going to have to build something for people to be a part of.

If you’re not sure which is the best communication vehicle for you, you may want to take my “Love Your Marketing Assessment” in my “Love-Based Online Marketing” book, to help you figure that out.

_____Have you worked through your mindset and/or subconscious blocks?

When you decide to step up and become more visible so you can start making a bigger difference, you may discover you have some mindset or subconscious blocks that are keeping you from making the progress you want to.

First off, this is completely normal. Chances are you already WOULD have a big social influence if you didn’t have any blocks getting in your way.

My book “Love-Based Money and Mindset” is all about working through your mindset blocks so you can grow your business, but this article will help you get started.

Lastly, you may want to dig into one or several of these topics in more detail. My Love-Based Business series is a great place to get started. Check out all the books here.

3 Hard Truths About Building Your Online Influence

3 Hard Truths About Building Your Online Influence

There’s no better way to grow your business online than by growing your influence.

When you’ve built a strong online influence, it likely looks like you have a large online community who follows you. For instance, maybe you have a big email list or lots of Facebook followers or a popular blog or podcast or Youtube channel. (Or a combination of the above.)

And, of course when you have that, it’s so much easier to build a successful, profitable business.

But, having online influence is more than just collecting followers on the various social networks. It also means people are actually reading your words and listening to your message.

And, when that happens, it’s truly magic. Because then you’re in a position to share your gifts and message in a much bigger way.

And when you want to make a big difference in the world, who wouldn’t want to have an influence?

The problem, of course, is how … how do you do it? How do you grow your online influence (especially if you’re just starting out), and do it in a way that’s authentic and doesn’t feel slimy, or like you’re twisting people’s arms? (In other words, how can you do it in a love-based way?)

Well, while it’s not particularly complicated or difficult to develop and grow your online influence, it DOES take some work. And you also need to accept a few hard truths. Let’s take a look at three of them:

1. It’s an inside job. Learning the latest, hot new way to attract followers on whatever platform you’re focusing on isn’t actually going to build your influence.

If you want to inspire people to make positive changes in their life, then you need to be very clear on who YOU are—what your expertise is, what your business is about, who you serve, etc.

This inner work can be tough—I get it. But, the clearer you are, the more people will be able to decide if you’re someone they want to listen to, and become a part of your community.

The less clear you are, the more likely people will ignore you—not because they aren’t interested in what you have to say, but because they’re too busy to try and figure out if you’re someone they want to pay attention to.

2. Be authentic. People are savvy. They can sense if you’re walking your walk, or if you’re just telling people to do one thing while you do something else.

And, there’s nothing that has less influence than a hypocrite.

The more you and your business are in alignment with your message, the more influence you’re going to have.

At the bare minimum, it’s important to reflect what you offer in your business. So, if you’re in the health industry, make sure your health habits mirror what you teach. If you teach marketing, make sure your own marketing is in order.

But, you may want to look deeper. Are you someone who pays your team and other contractors on time? Do you believe in investing in yourself (since you’re asking others to invest in themselves through you)?

It may not seem like this would move the needle much, but it really does. If you believe in Law of Attraction, you know that the more you have your own act together, the more the Universe will deliver to you. But, even if you don’t, if affects how YOU are showing up. If you’re out of integrity, it likely will show up in YOUR energy, which people will sense even if they never say anything or are even completely aware of it. And that will affect how people see you, and their willingness to be in your community.

3. It’s going to take time. Ah, this one is tough. Building online influence isn’t going to happen overnight. It might not even happen in six months. Or a year.

People need time—time to get to know you. To see if they like what you’re about. To see if they resonate with your message. To see if they resonate with YOU.

To make things worse, all of this happens on THEIR time, not yours. You need to land some clients because you need money for next month? Tough. No one is going to be compelled to follow you (much less buy your products and programs) because you need the money.

There is no question this is a long-tailed marketing strategy, which by definition means it’s going to take time … BUT once it happens, it will start to take on a life of its own.

If you want to dig deeper into marketing your business, you may want to check out my “Love-Based Online Marketing” book—you can get it here.

 

The 3 Biggest Myths Standing in Your Way of Being a Spiritual Entrepreneur with a Successful, Profitable Business, DEBUNKED

The 3 Biggest Myths Standing in Your Way of Being a Spiritual Entrepreneur with a Successful, Profitable Business, DEBUNKED

As a spiritual entrepreneur, does the idea of having a successful, profitable business make you feel vaguely uncomfortable?

(It’s okay—you don’t have to raise your hand or anything.)

I suspect a part of you absolutely wants a business that pays you well and helps you get your message or gifts out into the world.

But, does a part of you struggle with the idea of having a successful business? Do you think to yourself “I’m spiritual; I shouldn’t be concerned with practical things like money and business.”

If this is you, I want to begin by saying this: you’re not alone. A lot of spiritual entrepreneurs struggle with their businesses.

And, it’s my personal belief that a lot of that struggle and angst can be avoided.

Why?

Because many issues can be traced back to 3 fundamental myths about what it means to be a spiritual entrepreneur.

Just like artists and writers and other creative professionals, I feel spiritual entrepreneurs are plagued by their own history of failure and self doubt and getting in their own way.

What if having a successful, profitable business was as easy as a simple mindset shift? Would you be willing to give it a try and see what happens?

My personal belief is it really CAN be that easy—and to help, I’m busting what I consider the 3 biggest myths standing in your way of being a spiritual entrepreneur with a successful, profitable business.

Let’s get started.

Myth #1. As a spiritual entrepreneur, you’re not good at business.

This is obvious, right? You’re concerned with spiritual matters, not pragmatic things like running a business.

Besides, maybe you think business stuff is boring. Or difficult. Or you’re not good at. Or it’s “beneath” you in some way.

You just want to make the world a better place while enjoying time and money freedom—you don’t want to be mired down in spreadsheets and reports and that other icky stuff.

I, too, thought I wasn’t good at business. I thought it was boring, and I really didn’t want to have anything to do with it.

But, a funny thing happened: the more I pulled up my big girl panties and dug into learning business concepts, the more I realized I actually enjoyed running a business.

Business doesn’t have to be boring or difficult.

Isn’t that precisely the reason why we start a business in the first place?

What if you WERE good at business? What if it was fun and enjoyable to run a business? What would that look like for you?

Myth #2. As a spiritual entrepreneur, you’re not supposed to make money—you’re spiritual!

Money is such a low consideration, isn’t it? Only greedy, selfish people care about money. If you care about money, you can’t possibly be spiritual.

Or can you?

This is a huge one. In our culture, we’ve somehow separated making money and being spiritual, when there really is no reason to separate the two.

I believe money is a form of energy. It’s a way for people to give back to you and a way for you to receive payment for your offerings. It doesn’t have to be bad or evil or selfish or greedy.

Honestly, our relationship with money is just so tangled, there’s no way I can do it justice in this post (which is why I wrote an entire book on this—“Love-Based Money and Mindset,” as have devoted an entire podcast to transforming our relationship with money and our money stories) but I’d like to invite you to sit with this statement, and really feel into it:

There’s no virtue in being broke.

If you can’t help yourself, there’s no way you can help anyone else.

And, I know plenty of very spiritual entrepreneurs who are also financially successful. It doesn’t have to be either/or.

What if you could be both—financially and spiritually successful? What would that look like? How would your life and business shift?

Myth #3. As a spiritual entrepreneur, you’re supposed to suffer.

After all, our spiritual and religious leaders have suffered. Look at Jesus or Gandhi—they suffered. That means we should suffer, too. Right?

Well … first off, are we so sure they suffered? Sure they may have had a challenging life, but lots of us do. That doesn’t mean they suffered.

It’s my belief that a lot of suffering is a choice, and that choice takes place in our head. We suffer when we allow our fear-based emotions to run amok in our heads, and torture us unmercifully.

After all, there are very wealthy people who spend their days numbing out with booze and prescription pills, while women in Africa spend a big chunk of their lives carrying the water they need to survive on their heads—content and peaceful.

What gives?

Money alone isn’t a guarantee of happiness, just as a lack of money isn’t a guarantee of suffering. A lot of it boils down to your mindset, and what sort of relationship you have with your fear-based emotions.

And just like being broke isn’t virtuous and noble, neither is suffering. Suffering doesn’t make you more spiritual. It doesn’t even make you a better person. (I think we all know mean-spirited, nasty people who are definitely suffering, and making sure everyone around them suffers, too.)

Having a successful, profitable business and being proud of that business doesn’t make you a bad person. It doesn’t make you less spiritual.

It may allow you to help more people.

What if you didn’t have to suffer to be spiritual? What would open up for you? How would you approach your business if you knew that suffering was simply a choice, and you weren’t going to make that choice anymore?

If you’d like to dig into this more, my free book “How to Start a Business You Love AND that Loves You Back” is a great place start. The link to download is below.

[Video] Flip It! What Mistakes do Entrepreneurs Make When Starting a Business?

[Video] Flip It! What Mistakes do Entrepreneurs Make When Starting a Business?

Full disclosure — mistakes are VERY common, especially when you’re first starting a business. I personally have made more mistakes than I can even remember.

And, I’ve noticed a theme around the vast majority of mistakes. Most of them are made because the entrepreneur is focusing on the wrong things.

Let me give you an example.

When you’re first starting a business, chances are the first thing you focus on is creating a logo, a tagline, a website — things like that.

Now, there’s nothing wrong with any of those things. All of them most definitely can help you grow your business.

But, none of those — yes even the website — will actually put money into your pocket in the short term.

Now, this isn’t the say you don’t need a website — you absolutely do. BUT it’s completely possible to get some clients and money in the door without it.

And that, my friends, is what you should focusing on when you’re starting a business. Generating some income. Learning how to craft your offer so your ideal clients say yes to you.

Because if you don’t know how to craft an offer so your ideal prospects say yes to you, it’s going to be an uphill battle trying to generate an income.

Worse, what if you decide to spend all this time and money to  create a website, logo and tagline only to discover your message is all wrong? It actually DOESN’T actually attract, inspire and invite your ideal prospects to become your ideal clients.

So, what do you do?

Luckily there IS a better way, which I share in the video below. Check it out:

(Wondering exactly how you can get everything you want simply by flipping your perspective? Check out the first episode here.)

If you liked this episode, you may also like my Love-Based Copy books: Love-Based Copywriting Method and Love-Based Copywriting System, both available on Amazon, Barnes and Noble, iTunes and other online retailers.

 

How to Craft a Compelling Message That Gets You Results

How to Craft a Compelling Message That Gets You Results

When it comes to marketing, do you ever feel invisible? As if no one is paying the slightest attention to your message?

You’re spending all of this time writing marketing copy, emails, social media posts, blog posts, and website posts and they’re falling on deaf ears?

No matter how hard you work, how much blood, sweat, and tears go into your writing, your ideal prospects just aren’t buying.

If this sounds familiar, you’re in luck. Today, I’m sharing my advice for crafting a compelling message that converts your ideal prospects into ideal clients.

Your ideal clients see you and hear you and know you. And to know you is to love you, right?

Right.

So let’s get started.

A compelling message comprises two important elements: your ideal clients and your offer.

You’ll find your compelling message where those two elements intersect.

Ideal Clients

I’m a big believer in the power of identifying an ideal client as opposed to a target market or niche.

Whereas target markets and niches are based on external factors/demographics, ideal clients are based on internal factors like desires and fears.

Here’s my favorite illustration of this distinction:

A target market might be stay-at-home moms. A niche within that target market could be stay-at-home moms looking for a work-from-home opportunity.

And within that niche lies an ideal client.

For example, one stay-at-home mom may be looking for a work-from-home opportunity because she needs to contribute financially to her household. Her family needs two incomes to pay the bills.

Another stay-at-home mom may be looking for a work-from-home opportunity because she wants something of her own; she wants to use her professional skills, and she wants to develop an identity separate from that of a mother or wife.

Take a moment to think about the difference between the mindsets of those two women. Two completely different ideas are keeping them up at night.

In the first example, the mom is worried about paying the bills. And in the second, she wants to develop a new aspect of her identity.

So when it comes to messaging, your message to each of these women would be completely different.

People respond to specifics. So it’s important that your message address the specific worries or fears of your ideal client. The more specific you are in describing their unique situation, the more they’ll feel like you’re speaking directly to them; that you understand them. And the more they feel like you understand them, the more they’ll believe your offer will help them.

Now, if you aren’t sure what’s keeping your ideal client up at night, ask! Send out a survey or hang out where they hang out—Facebook, LinkedIn, etc.—and be a great listener.

Your Offer

Once you understand specifically what’s keeping your ideal client up at night, you can craft your offer so it’s clear you will solve his or her specific problem.

The best way to illustrate this is with an example.

One of my longtime clients, The Coaches Console, provides coaches with an all-inclusive software that streamlines and automates all the back-end elements of a coaching business: marketing, lead generation, client conversion, client enrollment and agreement, client support, scheduling, client notes … everything!

So what keeps their ideal clients up at night? They want to make a difference in the world. They’re passionate about coaching. But they find the business side of coaching overwhelming.

So The Coaches Console’s offer is their software—which solves their ideal client’s problem by taking all the guesswork and overwhelm out of the business side of coaching so that their ideal clients can focus on what they love best: coaching.

The Intersection: Your Compelling Message

So now you know what keeps your ideal client up at night. And you know what your offer is, and how you position it as a solution to what keeps your ideal client up at night.

It’s time to create your compelling message.

Let’s look at the three ideal client examples I’ve addressed in this post:

Stay-at-home moms who need to make money. These women are up at night because they need an income. So if you’re offering them a business opportunity, your compelling message would be: “I provide stay-at-home moms an opportunity to make a reliable income while still having time to take care of their families.”

Stay-at-home moms who want an identity separate from wife and/or mom. These women are up at night because they want to do something of their own. So if you’re offering them a business opportunity, your compelling message would be: “I provide stay-at-home moms an opportunity to have fun as entrepreneurs while still being there for their family members.”

Coaches who love coaching but are overwhelmed by the business details. These coaches are up at night because they want to focus on coaching and want to run a profitable business—but don’t necessarily have the business acumen to do so. So if you’re offering them a software to take care of all those business details, your compelling message would be: “We give coaches the tools they need to streamline and automate their businesses so they can focus on coaching.”

Your message, which happens at the intersection of Your Ideal Client and Your Offer, will be compelling once you make it clear that you will solve your ideal client’s specific problem.

If you are ready to start writing your compelling message, spend some time getting to know your ideal client and what keeps her up at night. Spend some time crafting your offer as the unique solution to that problem. And that, my friends, is where your compelling message is born.

If this topic resonated with you, you may be interested in Love-Based Copywriting System: A Step-by-Step Process To Master Writing Copy That Attracts, Inspires and Invites. It’s available at most online retailers. Learn more, here.