13-featured

Confidence When Starting an Online Business

kk-2

Getting started in the online was a bit tough for me.

It was 2009 or so, and all of my friends already had nice jobs and paychecks, while I was still sitting in my mom’s apartment, trying to figure things out on my own and find my place among my online mentors.

I carefully analyzed every piece of online business advice I could find and dived into almost every “next big thing” tactic that the gurus were trying to sell.

My results? Few and far between. I was making next to nothing, and if it hadn’t been for my mom who was very understanding, well, life would have been difficult for me.

Obviously and not surprisingly, I wasn’t confident at all about what I was doing.

I started thinking that maybe I don’t have what it takes, that maybe I should abandon the web, put together a CV and send it out to a couple of places, so maybe I could catch up to my friends and secure myself a nice shiny job too.

But for some reason I decided to keep going.

I probably had some internal resistance telling me that “a job” wasn’t the right path for me or something.

Along the way, I stumbled upon Sylvester Stallone’s story. It taught me two things: (1) my situation was, in fact, nowhere near tough yet, and (2)  failure is just a step towards success .

I can’t explain why this particular story resonated so well with me, but it helped me regain my confidence and stop worrying about all the small and big failures I was experiencing. I knew that if I dedicated myself to doing something for long enough, eventually it would pay off.

And it has.

However. Looking back, I can honestly say that I spent way too much time running on willpower alone instead of having the right tools and mindset in place. And although it has worked for me, this can’t be the optimal way of finding your confidence.

Relying on luck is never a good strategy, and you can easily run out of your willpower much sooner than you’ll find any success.

Therefore, what’s a better solution? And is there a road-map to confidence when running an online business?

I believe there is, and that we don’t have to be wandering in the dark endlessly until successful.

So this brings me to the actual topic of this whole blog – finding confidence when running an online business.

I’m aware that I can’t give you a road-map to confidence all on my own. It’s way beyond me. After all, I’m just one guy, and no matter what I say, it will still be just one guy’s perspective.

That’s why I reached out to 13 generous experts from various niches and asked them specific questions on the topic.

Before we start, let me just be honest for a minute and say that I’ve gained an incredible amount of insights on entrepreneurship and finding confidence when going through these answers and preparing them for publication. I am very happy to be able to deliver this resource to you, and I’m also more than certain that you will get just as much value out of it as I did!

Let’s welcome the experts:

Cliff Ravenscraft Cliff Ravenscraft
Bogdan Condurache Bogdan Condurache
Ruben Gamez Ruben Gamez
Demian Farnworth Demian Farnworth
Adam Connell Adam Connell
Mike McDerment Mike McDerment
 
Bamidele Onibalusi Bamidele Onibalusi
 
arrow-down2
The road to becoming a confident online entrepreneur

325
SHARES

map1

Step #1: Finding the right mentors

Some people say that getting business advice from our friends or family isn’t the best of ideas (unless they are entrepreneurs). However, when we’re just starting out building our “thing,” it is rather difficult to find knowledgeable people who would invest some trust in us and share valuable information (on top of the cliche “create quality content”).
How to find people worth paying attention to? People who can give us this much needed confidence boost, who will get us going and motivate us to take action. And what’s probably even more important, how to get them to pay attention to us? Can they really have that much impact on our confidence and therefore our businesses?
Jaime
Jaime Tardy
Finding a mentor has been HUGE in my life.

I was constantly on the lookout for people that were where I wanted to be.

I would do whatever I could to reach out, talk to, seem eager and know how much I valued and appreciated them.

One of the biggest problems mentors have (as told to me by many millionaires!) is that they give advice, but then the person listening doesn’t DO the advice.

arrow-l

One of the best ways to get them to pay attention to you is to DO what they say!

And then tell them you did it, and how much of an impact it made.

And yes – they can have a HUGE impact on confidence. My first mentor made me cold call 50 people a day. He was like – you’ll get used to it! And I would never have pushed myself that much because it seemed too scary. He changed my life!

john wide
Bamidele Onibalusi
Bamidele Onibalusi

I think the best way to start is by quoting the bible verse that says “By their fruits you will know them.”

I believe this is critical, because I recently ventured into fish farming here in Nigeria and quickly realized that success in the business mainly has to do with who you learn from; various people have various “secrets” to success, and the failure rate is generally high, but why I really followed my teacher was because of the results he is getting; he has the biggest fishes and makes the highest profit of everybody else I know (sometimes his profit is up to 150% in 6 months).

Follow your mentors based on the results they are getting
However, most of the others who are very opinionated about “what works” and what doesn’t are barely getting results; they have really small fishes, profit margin is low if there is any, etc.

Determining who is worth paying attention to is simple; look for someone getting the kind of results you are getting, and follow the person until you are getting your desired results.

Once you’ve determined the leaders you want to follow, the most effective way to get them to pay attention to you is to …

reveal your PASSION to them

If you are really passionate to succeed, you will give it everything it takes and you won’t care how difficult or ineffective it seems. Leaders see that, and they are ready to support those who have that kind of passion; look for tips they share freely online, passionately utilize these tips to get results, and showcase your results to them, letting them know it is thanks to them, and tell them you will like to learn from them in a closer way. This can be very effective!

Getting advice and support from the right people can impact your confidence as well as ability to succeed; sometimes, it is often the no. 1 most important factor.

map5

Step #2: Making your vision clear

The way I see it, problems with confidence are often connected to our lack of clear vision as for what we want to achieve (and how we want to achieve it). In other words, because we don’t have the right goals set, it’s not clear to us what to do next. This prevents us from getting stuff done and building our confidence along the way.
How to go about setting the right goals? How can someone get over the initial vague idea of “think about what you really want to achieve and make it your goal?” How to be specific and create goals that motivate rather than discourage?
risley
David Risley
The best way to get those goals is to break it down like a hierarchy.

Start out with with the big, grandiose goal that you have.

Then, beneath that, break it down into sub-goals or purposes.

Then you define plans to achieve those purposes.

And the plans are broken down into programs, projects, etc.

When you do it this way, then you can step back and see that the little tasks you’re doing are in alignment with the larger plans, and hence your purpose, and your goals. This allows you to get specific for what you’re shooting for (very important), but also know that everything has a direction to it.
natalie
Natalie Sisson
Note. In her answer, Natalie refers to the concept of “Painted Picture,” which was originally introduced in a book titled Double Double: How to Double Your Revenue and Profit in 3 Years or Less, by Cameron Herold. Natalie teaches us why creating our own Painted Picture will help us get our vision cleared and our goals nicely defined.
Enter Natalie:
A Painted Picture is a clear vision of where you want your business to be, three years from now.

He [Cameron Herold] suggests you get out of your office or normal working domain (which for me is never normal) to actually write it.

It’s a really interesting exercise to go through each section of your business (and your life), writing out your vision in the present tense.

It’s powerful too. It’s as if you’re already there and you can visualise what the future looks like…which is the whole point.

It got me all jazzed up reading about what I wanted my business to become. Even though I’m not there yet, seeing it written down on paper, just gets me excited.

It took me about two hours in total and it was challenging, and also fun. I mean you get to let all your inhibitions go and dream up a grandiose vision for what you really want your business and life to look and feel like.

Natalie also shares:

When we ONLY focus on our vision for our business and our life, then it makes it much easier to do everything in our power to make that vision a reality.

Each of our goals we set, and the strategies and objectives that support them, suddenly become so much more doable, because we have the big picture staring us in the face.

We have the WHY we’re doing what we’re doing. Then we do everything in our power to stay true to it.

Bogdan-Condurache
Bogdan Condurache
I believe that it was Benjamin Mays who said:

“The tragedy of life doesn’t lie in not reaching your goals. The tragedy lies in having no goals to reach.”

This is perfectly true for me and talks about setting any kind of goals for yourself, be it small or high-sky. Of course, setting the goals high-sky will make it very hard to achieve them and will probably discourage you along the way, so I wouldn’t actually recommend that, but from my personal experience the key is to set intermediate goals or step-by-step goals, which are easier to achieve and will motivate you just enough to keep going.

I can actually share a bit of personal experience from my own career path: after graduating college and getting a major in Financial Banking & Insurance, I decided I don’t really like this field of work and wanted to do something in the graphic design business, which was just of a hobby for me at the time. This was something I have never studied seriously, and I didn’t know a whole lot about the industry, but I felt that this is what I really wanted to do and my long-term goal should be to have my own graphic design studio and be successful at it.

So …

I started splitting this long-term goal in smaller pieces

… knowing that this would take a lot of time and effort to get there, but having an achievable goal in front of me would motivate me just enough to keep going.

This got me to my first goal which was learning the trade, that I have achieved mainly by getting an internship job with a graphic design firm and also studying design tutorials and online classes. After a few months, I have learned the basics and “stolen” a few tips & tricks from my colleagues, so it was time to move on, setting a different goal.

Along the 7 or 8 years that had taken me to finally achieve my goal, I have set and achieved a lot of different goals, like: “getting a better paid job,” or “trying to be more creative” and “getting more creative responsibilities” and so on, until the skills, confidence and experience had all build-up enough to start on my own. Also, meeting cool creative people with the same drive as me, has finally helped me bite the bullet and co-found ThemeFuse (and PixelKit later on). Of course, this is a goal that I now consider an intermediate one, as I have moved past and set higher expectations, but still taking them one step at a time.

So, in my opinion setting smaller goals is the right way to achieve a bigger, high-sky goal.


Setting smaller goals is the right way to achieve a bigger, high-sky goal.
Click To Tweet


Also, it’s very important that you have passion for what you plan to do, because without it, just setting the right goals will never be enough.

map5-rev

Step #3: Going for a minimal viable product or not?

Nowadays, it seems like we’re witnessing a major product launch every week, or a success story that’s extremely impressive. As a result, we trick ourselves into thinking that whatever we aim to create has to be huge, has to have a ton of features and offer a ton of benefits. But then we lose our confidence when we find out that building something huge also takes huge time and huge resources.
How to overcome this? Should we go for a minimal viable product instead? Is it really that effective? And can we gain confidence by building a very simple solution for just one pain first, and then expand over time?
Demian

Demian Farnworth:

Much better to build the audience first. That way you can learn what they need and then give it to them. Most people and businesses have it backwards. They build the product first and then try to find the audience. Of course, there are exceptions. Regardless, do your market research.

Adam-Connell
Adam Connell
The problem with creating a product with a huge number of features is that sometimes we can overcomplicate our offering.

I’ve seen too many start-ups that roll out a product where it seems like even the founders aren’t exactly clear on how the product can be of value.

I’m talking about the kind of sales pages where you look and end up thinking “Yeah, but how is this going to help me?”

 
Sure, the copy comes into it but when you’re trying to solve too many pains all in one go, you can end up tripping yourself over.

I believe the best way to start off is to:

Step #1

Identify the biggest pain point …
Step #2

… Solve it first.
You will be clearer on who the product is for and that will reflect in how you position the brand.

The bonus here is that creating the product will take up fewer resources and you will accomplish it quicker.

You will be able to get feedback quicker and get early adopters on board.

This makes things easier for you in a personal way and also financially.

You can then shape the rest of your product roadmap around the bigger picture that you have envisioned for your product (as well as customer feedback).


When you’re trying to solve too many pains all in one go, you can end up tripping yourself over.
Click To Tweet


Ruben

Ruben Gamez
I like the idea of starting with a smaller goal as a starting point. With Bidsketch, my original goal was to learn how to make money from a product. I went very niche because of this and planned to apply what I learned to the next product. Once I accomplished my initial goal, I realized that I could continue growing the product, so I simply set a new goal. I’ve done this four or five times now.

For me, this approach of smaller quick wins keeps me focused and motivated.

I think too many people aim for huge goals with unrealistic timelines. You obviously should have a goal that motivates you, but keep in mind that your goals (and approach) will change over time.

Mike McDerment

Mike McDerment

The answer to something like this isn’t binary – it’s about philosophy and approach and context, more than hard and fast rules.

It’s also about psychology – let’s start there.

Whenever you encounter something overwhelming – and there are lots of those things in a start up – you need to take a step back, and focus on what you can control.

… you need to take a step back, and focus on what you can control …
You can’t control what other people are going to do. You can’t control the fact that your competitors are massively outgunned in terms of resources, but there are things you can control – like managing to your next milestone. Stay focused there – however seemingly insignificant that milestone may seem because execution is just about everything when you are a startup.

WRT to philosophy, I think there are a bunch of ways to approach this. Philosophically, I think you want to play to your strengths. So when you are small, chances are any users you have are early adopters – people that found you before anyone and take pride in that. This kind of audience is encouraging and supportive as a rule – it doesn’t take as much to convince them like a mainstream audience.

The consequence: you will be celebrated (and you should celebrate progress), whereas the big guys need you to blow their mind or it’s like, “who cares?” and the difference is entirely about audience maturity and the philosophy and approach you apply to assessing your progress as a result.

map5

Step #4: Get only the essential education that you need

Every online business owner tries to learn and acquire new skills every day. But at the same time, we often lose our confidence when we realize how much there is to master and how seemingly insignificant we feel.
Do we need to be spending hours every day acquiring knowledge in order to become confident? Or is it actually a trap because we will never feel competent enough? How to tackle this and how to seek the truly essential education we need?
danny iny
Danny Iny
cliff

Cliff Ravenscraft

I think that acquiring knowledge is important and helps us bring additional value to those who follow us. However, I don’t see a direct correlation to how much knowledge you have to the amount of confidence that you have.

Many people suffer from what we like to call “Imposter Syndrome.” The fear that we are not competent enough come from the fear that others know more than we do and that we will be judged for where we are in the journey of our area of expertise.

I believe that everyone can confidently step out into this world, no matter where they are in the journey, and avoid the “Imposter Syndrome” by simply focusing all communication in these four areas.

Area 1
Start with what you have experienced so far in this area of expertise. Tell people “your story.”

In many cases, the more mistakes you’ve made, and and you share with your community, the more relatable and likable you will seem to those who are fellow strugglers on the journey.

Of course, you should also share your successful experiences as well. Don’t worry about those who will be offended by your sharing, telling you that you sound boastful. The fact is that sharing your success stories, and giving the details on how you succeeded, will do much to encourage and inspire others.

Share the challenges that you are facing now. Don’t pretend that now that you have a platform in this niche that you no longer face challenges. By sharing them, again, you are being more relatable to those who follow you. Also, there is a great chance that many, who are further along in the journey, may reach out to help you overcome those challenges.
Area 2
Area 3
Share what you are learning right now and how you plan to implement what you are learning.

Obviously, this means that you are actively learning new things. I make it a point to read books that are devoted to my personal and professional development. I listen to podcasts from experts in business, social media, technology, etc. I’m always learning something new. Being a great student of life makes you a great teacher for your community.

Share what you hope to accomplish moving forward. DREAM BIG DREAMS. Know where you want to go. Have a destination in mind. This is the only way that you will get there.

Also, if you don’t know direction that you are heading, why should anyone follow you?

Area 4
By focusing on sharing those four areas of your life, you can lead with great confidence! If you are always true and honest about those things, you can not be considered an imposter. Just be yourself and know, for sure, that many will criticise you for that.

You don’t need to spend hours a day, every day, gaining more knowledge to become competent and confident enough to deliver a message. You just need to grow some thicker skin and then put that skin in the game.

yaro

Yaro Starak
In my life as an entrepreneur true confidence has only come from achievement.

Tangible outcomes are what drive motivation. Of course learning is necessary – and some of the best education comes from the projects that don’t succeed – so you have to find a balance.

The best advice I can offer is:

Always acquire knowledge that is directly correlated to an outcome you are working towards today.

Only study what you need to know to solve today’s problems, and put into action what you learn immediately.

If you are unsure of what path to take, then the problem you have is a decision making one. You must study what you need to know in order to make the decision of what path to take.

map5-rev

Step #5: Master the craft of planning

Lack of confidence leads to procrastination, and that sometimes leads to complete inaction. Unfortunately, the enormity of the project at hand – building a business – literally paralyzes many entrepreneurs.
How to master the craft of planning? How to create a good plan that breaks down a large project into doable chunks? Are there any quick hacks we can implement to feel confident about executing our plan one step at a time?
Adam-Connell

Adam Connell
I’m a firm believer that anyone can accomplish anything that they put their mind to, whether you lack self-confidence or not.

The key is passion; we have to believe in the product we create.

When planning out your project you need to break it up into smaller tasks and create a complete road map for your project. They need to be manageable otherwise they may start to become tedious.

It’s important that the plan is as thorough as possible, consider everything from creation to marketing and growth while considering the possibility that you may need to react quick to demand in future if your product takes off.

Consider a time frame but keep things realistic and allow yourself some room to manoeuvre.

Try not to let falling behind schedule phase you, you cannot account for everything and sometimes things don’t go to plan.

But, if you can consider potential road blocks before they happen and account for them you will make things a lot easier for yourself.

Prioritize your tasks but be prepared to re-evaluate these as your project progresses.

Most importantly, try to make things as easy as possible, consider what tools are available to make managing the project as easy as possible and think about how you can make your business as process driven as possible. You will love how much more efficient processes can make your business, you need them in place early on.
… try to make things as easy as possible …
Ruben

Ruben Gamez
I like to keep things simple, so my plans aren’t very detailed. I usually start with a goal and then work backwards from there. From a high level, what do I need to accomplish this goal? I end up with a rough idea of what needs to get done, then spend some time prioritizing.

At that point, I add about two weeks worth of tasks to my active list and only research as the need comes up – not weeks before the project has started, but right as I’m working on those specific things. The only exception might be with risky tasks. For online businesses the biggest risk is building something that people don’t want to pay for. So it’s probably a good idea to make your first task testing your assumption that people want to pay for whatever you’ll be providing.

Anyway, going back to planning, the idea is to move as quickly as possible and stay focused. I do this by creating a high level plan, prioritizing things that matter while delaying ones that don’t (like a business account), testing assumptions, and breaking down my work into four hour tasks (maximum one day tasks).

curve-under

Bamidele Onibalusi

Bamidele Onibalusi
I would first advise not to become too obsessed with planning, as that alone can deter you from your main goal of getting things done.

I believe the most effective way to go about this is by breaking down each task into the smallest possible task that will take the smallest amount of time necessary. Once this has been done, you should start working on the most rewarding tasks, that will deliver the quickest results.

Seeing these results will motivate you and give you confidence to proceed with your other tasks.

map5
Bonus round!

map1

Defeating confidence problems

What were the main confidence problems you experienced in your career and how did you overcome them?
John Lee Dumas
John Lee Dumas
risley
David Risley
Not having promotions work as well as I had hoped. Hey, it happens. The best way to overcome it is to have something pulling you forward so you don’t stop. For me, its my family.
Jaime
Jaime Tardy
I wasn’t confident in my value at first – and I had a hard time asking for what I wanted. Like when I found my mentor, it took all of my strength to send the first email to him!
Demian
Demian Farnworth
Thinking I could compete with the big boys and girls. You cure that insecurity with hard work, training, education, and experience. Everyone starts at the bottom.
Bogdan-Condurache
Bogdan Condurache
During my career as a graphic designer, I have encountered many times what I would call “feedback fright”. What I mean by this is getting a bit uneasy about showing the client a pitch or a design proposal that I have have been working on. Lack of confidence made me doubt my initial feeling of “wow, this is great stuff” and made me start questioning the whole design style, idea, execution, etc. “What if the client will not like this?” or “What if the idea is too bold or not bold enough?” are questions that fuel the “feedback fright” syndrome and can influence your work in a bad way, because what happens is you start changing the proposal without a real reason, making it worse actually.

I have somewhat overcome this (I still experience it from time to time) by making sure the foundation of my work is sound and that I personally like the outcome – because if you don’t like it yourself, there’s a big chance no-one else will like it either. Also, getting better at your job and accumulating experience will increase your confidence, so even if someone doesn’t like your work and gives a bad feedback, you can fight back with good arguments and ideas that come from experience and gut feeling, challenging the client’s feedback. I know this is very specific stuff, from a specific industry, but maybe you can extrapolate it to a more general business model.

cliff
Cliff Ravenscraft
My greatest confidence issue that I’ve faced in my business was pricing. Especially when I’m offering a new product or service that I’ve never offered before. Questions like, am I good enough, will believe believe I’m worth this price, etc?

I overcame these fears by putting my new products out there with a price that was just beyond my comfort zone and allowing my clients to tell me that I should be charging much more than I charged them. In every product or service I’ve ever offered, I’ve ended up more than doubling the price of what I originally charged. It was putting myself out there and not failing that gave me the confidence to grow in this area.

yaro
Yaro Starak
My main confidence issues originally stemmed from being so different to everyone else around me. All my peers went on from school to university to jobs. I had no desire to get a job, and I knew I wanted to be my own boss, but without any local role models it was difficult to believe I could pay my bills with my own business one day.

I have to admit during the first few years out of university I was very lost and had little confidence. However as I started to get results and slowly generated enough money to live independently I realised what I was doing was so much better than anyone else around me. Eventually I became proud of being an entrepreneur, and people came to me asking how I did it.

I learned an important concept I call the “success ladder,” which is one tool that can give you confidence, step-by-step, as you strive towards full independence as an entrepreneur.

The success ladder is a simple idea – you celebrate each step forward and use it as the building block for the next step. When you apply this principle every day, you see how the small tasks you complete lead to bigger results. It becomes stronger and stronger as more results come your way, until you reach a point where you feel as if your results are inevitable – a very powerful form of inner confidence.

Danny Iny
Danny Iny
map5-rev

Getting instant confidence

What would be the one thing to do right now to gain some instant confidence in your business?
Demian
Demian Farnworth
Shoot low. Set some easy to achieve goal. Knock it out, and do it again. Those small success will build your confidence.
Jaime
Jaime Tardy
One thing I LOVED to do, was to have all of the kudos, testimonials, etc in one place. When I wasn’t feeling confident I would go back and read those. They were amazing people singing my praises, and while I was hard on myself – it was easy to see how much value those people got out of working together.
Bogdan-Condurache
Bogdan Condurache
The one thing i did was to make sure we built a product that people need and want. If you have something that people want, in our case great looking and perfectly working websites, you build a client base that appreciates your work and buys your stuff. And with this appreciation comes confidence, you start feeling more secure, more sure of your decisions and ultimately more successful. As i said earlier, having great foundations, like passion and skills for what you do, is the key to being confident and having a successful business.
yaro
Yaro Starak
Do something. I learned a long time ago that you must focus on output – on creation, not just consumption. Consuming things, whether education, or entertainment, will not lead to an outcome. Only creating things for the consumption of other people leads to the results you want, so get out there and create something for other people.
risley
David Risley
Generate your first dollar. From there, it gets easier.
Mike McDerment
Mike McDerment
This is a tough one – it really is a question that varies company by company, person by person, day by day. The answers for me have evolved over the years because the measures of progress have. To begin, it was customer validation in the form of feedback. Then it evolved into watching product usage, and eventually in time it was revenue added. But normally what gives me confidence are subjective things. For example, I get fired up when we hire someone awesome and see them getting ramped up on our business. That gives me confidence, because I know a super capable performer is going to be applying themselves to making FreshBooks a great company for other FreshBookers and our customers.
map5

Being a successful entrepreneur

Is it possible to be a successful entrepreneur without being confident?
John Lee Dumas
John Lee Dumas
Mike McDerment
Mike McDerment
One of the best things I ever read – sadly I can’t remember where – is that every “successful” person has had moments where they have doubted themselves and felt like a failure at the very moment the world is exalting their “success.” I know I’ve had moments where everyone around me thinks “this is a big success” and is patting me on the back, but for me it’s not like that – all I can see is the work ahead and it’s daunting.

So I guess what I take from this is, successful or not, we are all human – we have moments of doubt and fear. I think there is a tendency to believe this is not true of “successful” people. What I’d say to those who aren’t feeling confident is, that those internal demons are a source of motivation. Control them. Channel them. But don’t for a second think you are the only one. You are not the only explorer of the terrain you are on, and as lonely as the path of building a company can be, you have to keep that in mind and just focus on what delivering on the things under your control.

Adam-Connell
Adam Connell
I believe it is.

In some cases I’ve known people to turn their lack of confidence into a positive attribute and go on to do great things purely by striving to do better.

And for others, the confidence comes along when achieving success.

Wow, that was a lot of information to take in all at once! I’ll let you process this in peace, but remember to take action on what you’ve learned here as soon as possible.

Also, are there any confidence issues you’re experiencing right now? What one thing are you planning to do ASAP to solve this issue?

 In the meantime, don’t forget to share this with whoever might consider the information inspiring. 

More cool resources just like this in your inbox.
+ Exclusive content not available elsewhere.

13 Successful Entrepreneurs Share How to Gain Confidence When Starting an Online Business | NewInternetOrder.com

19

19-wide

I don’t usually repost stuff.

Actually, I never repost stuff.

But there’s this one short article I stumbled upon at Business Insider that hit a complete home run with me and I knew I had to share it with you guys.

The article’s so true.

It’s so accurate.

It’s so relevant to anyone who’s doing anything that can be considered “business.”

It’s so spot-on if you’re facing any kind of challenge right now.

It’s exactly the kick we need to keep us going and help us achieve great things in our lives.

That being said, the original presentation of the article did suck a bit – guess nothing’s perfect. So if I’m going to repost anything, I want to step the game up a bit and give it some top-notch presentation!

Honest note. If there’s anything you can read this week that’s going to have a significant impact in your life, it’s this.


19 hard things you need to do if you want to be successful

 

(1) you have to  make the call you’re afraid to make

(2) you have to  get up earlier than you want to get up

(3) you have to  give more than you get in return right away

(4) you have to  care more about others than they care about you

(5) you have to  fight when you are injured, bloody, and sore

(6) you have to  feel unsure and insecure when playing it safe seems smarter

(7) you have to  lead when no one else is following you yet

(8) you have to  invest in yourself even though no one else is

(9) you have to  look like a fool while you’re looking for answers you don’t have

(10) you have to  grind out the details when it’s easier to shrug them off

(11) you have to  deliver results when making excuses is an option

(12) you have to  search for your own explanations even when you’re told to accept the “facts”

(13) you have to  make mistakes and look like an idiot

(14) you have to  try and fail and try again

(15) you have to  run faster even though you’re out of breath

(16) you have to  be kind to people who have been cruel to you

(17) you have to  meet deadlines that are unreasonable and deliver results that are unparalleled

(18) you have to  be accountable for your actions even when things go wrong

(19) you have to  keep moving towards where you want to be no matter what’s in front of you

 

You have to do the hard things

The things that no one else is doing …

The things that scare you …

The things that make you wonder how
much longer you can hold on

 

Those are the things that define you

Those are the things that make the difference between living a life of mediocrity or outrageous success.

The hard things are the easiest things to avoid

to excuse away. to pretend like they don’t apply to you.

The simple truth about how ordinary people accomplish outrageous feats of success is that they do the hard things
that smarter,
wealthier,
more qualified people
don’t have the courage – or desperation – to do.

Do the hard things.
You might be surprised at how amazing you really are.

(Here’s the source. And let me just say, I’m so jealous it’s not me who came up with this post.)

Please share this list with whoever can benefit from it. They will thank you for it. I honestly believe this.

 Looking for some online business advice for normal people
and more resources just like this one? Jump in. 

[Real-Talk] 19 Things You Need to Do if You Want to Be Successful | NewInternetOrder.com

manifesto3

Something got me thinking the other day.

The thing is, have you noticed how difficult it is to find simple and short advice on the web these days?

I mean, wherever you look, all you see are “ultimate guides” for this or that. And although I love in-depth advice as much as the next guy, it’s becoming really hard to keep up with the online world.
 

For instance, here’s the most recent guide by Neil Patel – the guide to building your blog audience.

guide

Want to take a guess at how many words it is?

arrow-down2

30,000

You know … the casual number of 30,000 words. I bet this is a nice afternoon read, provided that you don’t have a life to live and stuff to do.

But I’m not hating. Not at all. I’ve actually had a quick look at some random chapters in the guide and they do seem to provide top-notch advice and insights from the man himself.

In other words, if you have 30,000-words-worth-of-time to spare then go on, read it and then apply the advice to your blog. It will most certainly help you make it awesome.

 

(By the way, just to give you a general idea about the scale, “Lord of the Flies” by William Golding is almost exactly 60,000 words. I leave the math to you.)

 

But what if you don’t have the 30,000-words-worth-of-time? What then? Are you effectively outed from getting quality insights?

Quite frankly, you are.

At least in part.

Feel free to correct me, but most of the content I see being published on the web these days (meaning 2014) falls into one of these categories:
 

  • Ultimate guides – great for in-depth advice on a complex problem; upwards of 25,000 words.
  • Infographics – there are better and worse, but the good ones achieve the goal of showcasing data-heavy information in an understandable manner.
  • Short posts – explaining one idea in a simple manner; and not being connected to any specific big picture of things.
  • Long posts – explaining one idea that’s a bit more complex; this type of post isn’t connected to any specific big picture either.
  • Link bait – usually a gathering post where a number of experts chip in on some problem and share their advice; the idea is to then get those experts to link back to you.
  • Filler content – content created for marketing/SEO/fill-in-the-blank purpose.

 

And out of all of the above, I would say that the only type of information that’s usable in the long run is indeed the ultimate guide. The rest is just entertainment.

If you don’t believe me then just try to pay attention to your own attitude towards the next blog post you read. Ask yourself this:

  • Did I take action on it?
  • Did I make any notes and included anything new into my business?

Probably not. But that’s okay … me neither.

Ultimate guides, however, are a bit different. Whenever you’re going through one, the time investment is so significant that it simply feels bad not to do anything about it later on. Even if you end up not applying 100% of the advice, you will surely do something.

Going back to my initial question, yes, you are outing yourself if you can’t devote significant time to ultimate guides.

And this bothers me, personally.

It bothers me because I’m one of those people (also known as normal people) who don’t have time for a new 30,000-word guide every week. So whenever something new comes out, I’m like “Damn it! One more thing I have to go through!”

That’s why I’m aiming at leveling the playing field a bit. And I’m going to do it with the new series of posts coming out soon.

Instead of being just yet another online business blog, I will focus on the essential, the actionable, and the easy to grasp advice.

You can see a sample of this in my previous post – the comparison of the 5 top to-do list tools. Feel free to tell me if I achieved the goal or not, but the idea was to make that post usable even if you just have a quick glance at it and don’t actually read it.

So to make this mission clearer, I’ve just published a manifesto. The Normal People Manifesto – I call it.

In it, I explain what online business for normal people means, and what’s the first step to fight the information noise of the 21st century.

I’m also making the manifesto my new About page. I actually think that it’s one of the more important things I’ve ever published here. Jump in:

 
arrov-curve-1

manifesto2

Have You Seen the Manifesto? & Here’s Why “Online Business Advice for Normal People” Is So Scarce on the Web | NewInternetOrder.com

banned-from-adwords

So you’ve just been banned from AdWords … now what?

If that’s the question on your mind, you’re in the right place.

On a personal note, I didn’t really mention this until now, but one day, I too got banned from AdWords.

 

As a matter of fact, I can even do you one better. I got banned from AdWords twice!
 

It happened a couple of years ago, at a time when I was making some nice monies with the AdWords-to-affiliate business model. Everything was going well, until this email appeared in my inbox (actual email):

 

 
Hello AdWords Advertiser,

Your AdWords account has been suspended because it doesn’t comply with our Advertising Policies and our AdWords Terms and Conditions. Please note that this means your account and any related accounts have been suspended, you can’t create any new accounts, and your ads will no longer run on Google, our search partners, or on Display Network placements.

Let me translate this into plain English:

 

 
We, Google, don’t want to have anything to do with you. And although you are ready to throw a lot of money at us, we won’t accept it because f*** you, that’s why.

So how did I manage to get banned twice? I don’t know why exactly (I can only imagine that it’s because there’s a big mess at Google), but a stunning 2 years after the initial ban notice, I got another one saying the exact same thing.

I don’t know, maybe Google feels that once in a while, they need to remind me I am banned.

Anyway, onwards.

 
 

The not-effective way of handling an AdWords ban

 

A standard human reflex is to just send an email back asking about the issues, trying to negotiate, saying that you will improve, promising to be a good boy, etc.

 

But with Google, none of that works.

 

Google AdWords is notoriously known for not responding to any email, so you’re just hitting a wall with every attempt to experience any form of actual human interaction with anyone at Google.

 
 

The alpha-male way of handling an AdWords ban

 

Note. Sorry, but if you’re looking for classic “nice guy” advice, this is not it. I won’t be talking about how you should fix your site, reach out to Google, apologize, and so on. None of this has made its way to this tutorial.

Before I go into the nitty-gritty, let’s take a look at the two possible scenarios that you might be in at the moment:

 

Scenario #1:

AdWords was the only traffic source for your site. A fairly common thing in the online business space, especially if your business model is affiliate marketing or advertising.
Scenario #2:

AdWords was just one of the traffic sources.
Now, this might sound counterintuitive, but the first scenario is a lot easier to deal with, even though you are losing 100% of your traffic after the ban.

Here’s what you do:

 

only

Things to do if AdWords was your only traffic source

 

Step #1.

Start by buying a completely new domain, new hosting account (at a new IP address; you can do this with IXWebHosting, by the way – they offer unique IPs to every customer).

 

Step #2.

Install WordPress, pick a new theme, and create a new structure on your new site.

The structure should be a bit different than that of the original site, but it should provide a somewhat similar experience.

 

Step #3.

Copy your old content to the new site. At this point, your new site is very similar to the old one, content-wise. But it does have a new design and a new structure. Not to mention the new name and web address.

 

Step #4.

Now the best part. Create a new AdWords account with another credit card number.

Yeah, I know, Google tells you that you can’t do that, but the fact is that it’s not so much that you can’t … you’re just not allowed.

Kind of like your mom saying “don’t touch the pie until it cools down.” You know you’re not allowed to, but you will do it anyway…

With Google, the worst that could happen is them banning you again. In which case, you will just repeat the process.

 

Step #5.

Launch new campaigns on your new account.

Done.

not-only

Things to do if AdWords was one of your traffic sources

 

This is a bit tougher.

You can’t just scrap the site because you don’t want to lose those other traffic sources, but you still want to get your advertising traffic flowing.

 

The simplest solution, although I will be sounding a bit obvious, is to start testing new advertising networks. Often, it’s also the best solution.
 

These days, there really are many possibilities. And I’m not only talking about other PPC networks, like Yahoo Advertising, 7search. You can also try media buys, direct blog ads, sponsored posts, newsletter ads, and so on.

 
 

Let me emphasize the point here. This really is the first thing I would try after being banned from AdWords.
 

However, if you do want to somehow get back in the system, you can do the following.

Note. High risk method.

 

Step #1.

Create a gateway site. This site is just a one-page site – a landing page. It should play a role of a middleman between your ad and the target page on your main site.

This means the gateway needs to feature some strong copy to convince the visitor to click through to your main site. This will obviously lower your overall CTR, but that’s another story.

The technical side of this gateway is similar to the approach described a couple of paragraphs above – you need to get a new domain and a new host.
 

Step #2.

Cheat your way into AdWords one more time with a new email and a new credit card. Just like described above.

 

Step #3.

Set your campaigns and point them to your gateway.

I’ve labeled this method high risk because it’s a lot easier for Google to get a grasp on what’s going on, so the lifespan of your new site will be even shorter.

 

What about “the right thing to do?”

There’s no right thing to do here.

I said it multiple times in the past and I’ll say it again; I’m not here to teach the right thing to do. I’m here to list the possibilities and leave it up to you to decide whether it’s a path worth taking in your specific situation.

I’m not judging. If you are okay with the methods described here, it’s your call. If not, that’s cool too.

Looking for some online business advice for normal people
and more resources just like this one? Jump in.

What to Do if You Get Banned From Google AdWords | newInternetOrder.com

control

So you’ve been working on your online business, testing different things, playing with new methods…overall, just trying to make things go a little better.

Inevitably, however, comes the day when you will start having doubts.

 

Don’t deny it.

YES, YOU WILL EXPERIENCE THIS.

It happens to everyone.

 

Pat Flynn’s recent hit – Let Go – is basically about the path from panic to profits and purpose (his own words).

let-go

Corbett Barr – the creator of Fizzle (and the killer of Think Traffic) – has his own two cents to share about overcome self-doubt too.

fizzle

Almost every big name out there faces this. If it didn’t hit you yet, it will. Sorry for being the bearer of bad news.

I did go through this too, by the way. A number of times. Probably a lot more times I’m comfortable admitting.

 

The thing with doubts is that they are not always that relevant to the reality we’re in. Sometimes, we’re simply worried about things that don’t make sense.

Other times, we’re worried because we don’t feel like we’re in control. We’re worried that we’re only a victim of circumstances and everything we do is kind of reactive or even accidental in nature.

not all worries are real
For example, why are you trying to utilize a certain promotional method in your business at the moment? Is it because it’s part of your overall yearly plan of action or something? Or did you just see it somewhere on the internet and decided to give it a shot? If it’s the former, then cool, you rock! If it’s the latter, then welcome to the party, you’re just like the rest of us…

 
 

The goal: re-gaining control

 
 

Re-gaining control is by far the most important thing on my list for 2014, and I think it should play a role just as strong on yours.

Please don’t get me wrong. I’ve been doing okay, but I feel that taking this to the mysterious next level won’t happen if I’m not in control of my projects and my actions entirely.

So here’s my plan and the approach I’m taking to make it happen. A big part of this is mindset-related, so proceed with caution if you’re more about the direct go-do advice.

 

clock

Taming time

 

Working in the computer era is very confusing and very difficult, even though we don’t have to deal with hard physical labor all day. But maybe that’s exactly the problem…

 

Here’s the deal. If you’re a construction worker then your work and relaxation environments are very separate and distinguishable. Basically, if you’re at a construction site, you’re at work. If you’re sitting in your chair at home, you’re relaxing.

I know this sounds drop-dead basic so far, but bear with me.

Now, when you’re working on a computer, or even worse, the internet is your main work tool then you’re pretty screwed. That’s because distinguishing work from relaxation is virtually impossible.

construction
For example, picture the following two scenarios:

  1. Work. You’re sitting at your desk, looking at your screen, browsing through the admin panel of yourdomain.com and typing a message.
  2. Relaxation. You’re sitting at your desk, looking at your screen, browsing though someone’s profile at facebook.com and typing a message.

These are essentially the same environments. I mean, the difference for your conscious brain is obvious, but for your primal brain, it’s not obvious at all. This small change – the specific website you’re on, makes it really confusing for your brain to determine if you’re at work or trying to relax.

For ages, we’ve only been doing physical work, and our brains got used to that concept. That’s why physical workers have no problems at all relaxing after a day’s worth of hard work. They can switch in a matter of seconds due to the environment change. We cannot.

 

This whole probably a bit boring story brings me to one conclusion. And it’s this:

If we want to tame our work time entirely, which is the first step to re-gaining control, we need to start using our main work tool (our PC or Mac) for work only.
 

This means no relaxation time by your computer. No YouTube, no Facebook, no video games, etc.

And I don’t only mean the obvious, which is avoiding distraction during your work time. I actually mean not using them at all for relaxation purposes.

Once this habit is set for good, our brains will learn, adapt, and eventually let us be in control when we’re working.

So, the big question is what to do when you want to relax with some internet entertainment by your side? Considering my strict rules regarding your work-PC, the only solution I can see is using an entirely different device for relaxation.

For example, if you want to relax, you can take your iPad, or your spouse’s tablet and sit in this nice chair by the window, instead of remaining at your desk.

 

plan

Planning long term

 

The other building block to re-gain control in your online business is getting into the habit of long term planning.

We all know the basics of constructing a plan. What you do is pick a goal, write an outline on how you’re going to achieve it, and then start executing it. But short term planning doesn’t protect you from falling victim to those one-off techniques and methods that you’ll stumble upon on the web almost every day.

 

It’s just that even despite having a good plan, you are likely to find yourself in a situation where you’re chasing after the new cool method that someone has described on a blog somewhere. So the solution I advise for this is practicing the art of long term planning.
Here’s what you do:

  • Focus on handling the tasks that you’ve planned for first, before going after anything new and exciting.
  • Whenever you do come across something interesting, ask yourself if it has the potential to make the execution of your main plan better or faster. If not, then don’t even bother testing the thing out.
  • In general, focus 80% of your time on executing your core plan and handling the tasks specified in it, and only 20% of your time testing new things.

Being on the top of the mountain and knowing every new technique out there is very trendy these days, but try looking at it from an old-school perspective… Let’s take Nike as our example. Do you think that the overall man-hours spent in that huge company is on new technique and idea development, or on simple sneakers-assembly? Since we do have Nike sneakers in the stores all over the world, I guess it’s the latter.

So there you have it. These are my two main methods for re-gaining control. And I really do intend to implement them as soon as possible.

The benefits can be huge. I’m sure of it. No one has ever gotten to the next level by just going through the motions and dealing with their business on a day-to-day reactive basis. The real success is about being in control of your business and your career as a whole.

If you like the stuff, just enter your name and email below to sign up to my newsletter,
where you’ll get more resources just like this one.



Hey You! You’ve Lost Control in Your Business. Here’s Why, and What to Do About It | newInternetOrder.com

At first, the topic of how to learn SEO online seems like something that’s been fairly well-covered on the web.

I mean, there are sites like Moz.com, Search Engine Journal and so on. But as it turns out, they are more about the in-the-trenches practices and advice for people who are already deep into SEO.

But what if you’re just starting out? There surely has to be something for the beginner on a site like Moz, right? Well, not really.

Here’s why. Granted, Moz has their beginner’s guide to SEO (link), but that thing is 10 friggin’ chapters. Again, 10 chapters. In total, that’s probably in the 30,000+ word range. And 30,000 words is a mid-sized book.

What’s wrong with it? Let me quote the classic:

Ain’t nobody got time fo’ dat!


How to Learn SEO Online

So…Moz isn’t really a good place for a beginner to learn SEO online. In fact, there are very few places where a beginner can actually get some useful advice; advice that they can implement right away without having to go through a whole book worth of content.

And I know I speak the truth because I still consider myself somewhat a beginner. I too have difficulties picking the right tactics and staying confident that what I’m doing will actually work, especially with things changing so fast.

So, long story short, I’ve been doing a lot of researching on this, and by the looks of things, I can only recommend three ways of obtaining good SEO advice for a beginner (that is if you’re a person who wants to grow your business’ online visibility by ranking it high on Google).

1. Relevant and updated gathering posts

Every once in a while, a blogger goes the extra mile, contacts a number of top players in the SEO market and asks them about their most current advice that could help a true beginner succeed.

This time, it’s Ayodeji of Effective Inbound Marketing who’s done this. He took the time to interview 19 SEO experts and published the results in one large gathering post.

Posts like that are great places to go for relevant information. The experts featured are people practicing SEO every day. So whenever they get asked about what they’d do if they were just starting out, they always share the most current and updated advice.

Furthermore, I actually encourage you to look for similar “how to learn SEO online” posts in the future. If not Ayodeji then someone else will surely repeat this group interview thing in a couple of months or so.

2. Link building strategies at Point Blank SEO

Point Blank SEO is one of the coolest SEO blogs in the last few years. The advice is clear, understandable, and actionable.

For instance, link building is known to be the core of SEO. In plain English, if you want to do SEO actively, you’re going to be link building a lot.

So a while ago, Jon – the founder of Point Blank SEO, published this link building strategies page.

What’s great about it is that it features quite a lot of tactics, but each one comes with a short description, so depending on how much time and dedication you have for this, you can pick something that suits you in one way or the other.

3. Fizzle and their website traffic course

Fizzle is a training site created by Corbett Barr. It provides quality, real-talk business training with no BS. It’s a paid program ($35 a month), but there’s also a $1 trial.

One of the courses available (and the library is quite big) is about website traffic. Ultimately, the reason why we’re doing SEO is to get traffic. Good search engine rankings on their own are pointless if they don’t bring traffic, right? And it just so happens that Corbett knows a thing or two about traffic. After all, he’s the guy behind Think Traffic.

The website traffic course at Fizzle is video-based and consists of 16 lessons. Everything is laid out nicely and easy to follow, just what a beginner needs.

Feel free to take advantage of the $1 one-month trial and check it out.

Action and learning

I guess that’s it for the places to go, but I’d like to take one more moment to encourage you to do some sniffing around of your own. Good SEO advice is only as strong as it is up-to-date. So, unfortunately, you need to be on a constant lookout if you want to build and retain good search engine visibility.

Oh yes, one more thing. For some additional info on how to learn SEO online and apply it to your online business, make sure to also check out these two posts: the SEO glossary – to get to know the terminology, and my guest post on ProBlogger talking about the essential SEO settings for sites running on WordPress.

If you like the stuff, just enter your name and email below to sign up to my newsletter,
where you’ll get more resources just like this one.




How to Learn SEO Online If You’re a Beginner (and an Online Business Owner)? | newInternetOrder.com

ntestIf you’ve had the chance to read The The 4-Hour Chef by Tim Ferriss then you know that he’s kind of hooked on the idea of one-pagers.

In essence, a one-pager is a very condensed resource about a given topic. It’s meant to list only the essential, and only the bits that will give you the most results while at the same time requiring the least of your input/effort.

I’ve liked the idea of one-pagers right away the minute I saw them. That’s probably because I like structured information. I like structure in general. Okay, I’m a Structure Nazi (like a Grammar Nazi only less mainstream).

Seeing that one-pagers are a great tool to convey somewhat complex ideas in a relatively easy to grasp manner, I’ve decided to use them on this blog.

My first target, as you can see in the headline – split testing and statistical significance.


Split testing and statistical significance 1-pager

Preliminary

Check statistical significance

Checking statistical significance will let you know if the results you’re getting from your split test are by any chance accidental.

For that, you can use my statistical significance calculator >>.

If your results are significant, you can name the winner and the loser of your test.

loser winner

Next step: scrap the loser, create another version of your test subject and run it against your winner in a new test. In other words, start over.

Don’t over-interpret

 

The main thing to keep in mind when split testing is not to over-interpret your results. Just because there is a winner and there is a loser, doesn’t meant that you will be able to tell exactly why the test has turned out the way it did. The reasons can be many.

It’s a lot safer to just take the results as they are, and not build theories trying to explain them. Most of the time they turn out to be false anyway. Your time is much better spent creating a new version and running the test again.

Your downloadable copy.

What’s your relationship with split testing? Do you even lift split test?


[Printable] Split Testing and Statistical Significance 1-Pager | newInternetOrder.com

i-forgot-how-to-dogIt’s easier than we think to get sidetracked and lose the flow of running our businesses…

It’s those moments when you sit in front of the computer, doing some work (so you think), and realizing that you’re probably just wasting your time writing yet another piece of content (or promoting something, or emailing people, etc.) and that there are a thousand other activities that can bring you more results and more satisfaction at the same time.

So you start searching for new opportunities, reading blogs, tuning into forums, checking out new product reviews, getting into this new thing, and so on.

This makes you feel good for a while, but then after, say, a month or two the situation repeats itself and makes you question your online business greatness pursuit. In the end, the question likely to appear in your mind, provided you’re familiar with various online memes, is “have I forgotten how to online business?”

No, you haven’t. Someone else is to blame… Here are the two main villains sitting quietly in our minds and selling crack to our online business cells:

 

Killing the two main villains

Busy Employee

busy

Chasing Opportunity

chasing

Busy is the guy that keeps you going just for the heck of it. He is the one telling you to just do your job and shut the f*** up about all your insecurities. He wants you to stay busy every day.

Chasing is the other guy that takes over when you’re really in need of some new stuff to refresh your day and introduce some variety into your business efforts. He wants you to go after every new opportunity that crosses your path.

Together, these guys will make you chase every new opportunity, stay busy when implementing it, then switch to something entirely different after a while and repeat the cycle.

The result? You achieve nothing except losing a lot of time.

Here’s how to GTA5 their asses:

Don’t stay busy, stay productive with ongoing planning

Being busy is a bad thing because it creates the illusion of accomplishing something significant day in and day out.

I mean, you’re working 8+ hours a day, so you have to be achieving something, right? Well, not necessarily, and this is exactly the problem with being busy. It gets you nowhere except keeping you occupied.

Not that I’m an expert on this, but for me, the solution is ongoing planning.

Planning, in its default form, is seen as this something that gets done once, and then the plan needs to be executed throughout the days/weeks/years. But this doesn’t always work. Or should I say never works because our plans need to be updated regularly so they can remain relevant.

My solution is ongoing planning. It’s the practice of making a cup of tea and taking 1 hour on Sunday to:

  • reflect the things I did during the week,
  • the things I’m planning to do the coming week,
  • and whether they play well with the grand picture of things I’m chasing with my business.

It’s really remarkable how much a mere hour on Sunday can do for the clarity of your actions and reassuring you that you’re indeed going the right way.

 

Don’t mistake knowledge for wisdom

Learning new things and noticing new opportunities is always important. It’s what makes us grow, actually.

But the thing is that we should never mistake knowledge for wisdom. In other words, just because someone says that what they offer is the best thing friggin’ ever, doesn’t mean that it’s the case.

A simple guideline is to question everything and disregard all authority figures.

Let me say this again. If someone is an authority, this doesn’t mean that they are right. This only means that the spotlight is on them to be right, and it’s up to you to develop your own opinion whether they are or not.

…Hitler was an authority in the 1930s in Germany. Was he right?

Anyway, I digress. Going back to the story; the opportunity chaser in you is all about believing everything that someone says because it’s just comfortable to believe in a magic new solution. It isn’t a good long time approach though.

Every opportunity needs to be questioned. Wise men take knowledge given to them by other people and build their own opinions on it. They don’t adapt someone else’s words as their own.

For instance, here’s an example of how a $300k ponzi scheme played out just recently on the BlackHatWorld. A prime example of how a large crowd of people believed in the promises of other people just because they used the right words at the right time.

Be consistent and test

Being consistent is among the most crucial traits of online entrepreneurs. It’s easy to abandon something and quickly get on a new bandwagon. It’s a lot tougher to stay consistent and build up a thing through all the difficulties and failures.

Just because something doesn’t work right now, doesn’t mean that you need to replace it with a new solution. You should always start by testing different variants and tweaking your techniques until successful. Staying consistent and going forward has always been the best path.

The things to do next

If you’re worried that you may have forgotten how to online business yourself then I urge you to take the next Sunday to begin your ongoing planning. Getting some clarity is always the best starting point to anything.

Next, take two post-it notes and place them on your computer screen. The first one saying: Don’t be busy. The second one: Don’t chase.

If you like the stuff, just enter your name and email below to sign up to my newsletter,
where you’ll get more resources just like this one.




“Damn It, I Forgot How to Online Business!” | newInternetOrder.com

The topic of doing this or that while on vacation is quite popular among online business people of today, otherwise known as online entrepreneurs. I guess the main reason is that many people find it hard to detach completely during their vacation time and to forget about all forms of work altogether. And, to be honest, I’m somewhat that type of a person too.

vacation

I mean, it’s not that I will do consistent work on a daily basis no matter what, just because I’m a workaholic or something. On the contrary, workaholism is probably the last thing that could ever hit me… Right after vegetarianism.

That being said, I still like to keep my finger on the pulse and just be able to check things up every couple of days and make sure that business is going well. After all, even when we are on vacation, our businesses aren’t. And our ability to keep them profitable even for a week or two of our inactivity is crucial.

Therefore, here’s what I do (to some extent) and what I also encourage you to look into if you want to have a peaceful vacation time, during which, you can be sure that your business is going just like you’ve never left your desk.

1. Be on it, not in it

Let’s start by setting one thing straight, and that is the fact that vacation is not meant for worrying about how things are going with the thing we call our business. We really deserve better than this.

Actually, in my opinion, if we can’t be comfortable about not working for a while then it’s probably a good moment to re-evaluate our life goals and such. I know that for many people their businesses mean everything, but missing out on important parts of life because of work isn’t healthy at all.

So the main guideline is just like the heading suggests – be on top of things, and don’t worry about every single detail that’s going on while you are absent.

It really is okay to let some things slide…

2. Have access to the most important tools

Even though you won’t be actually using any of these tools in 99% of the cases, it’s still good to have access in case anything happens that really really requires your input.

The tools I’m talking about here are the ones that are the core of your business. Maybe it’s the admin account on your WordPress site, maybe it’s your AdWords account, your Teambox or Basecamp, etc.

I don’t want to tell you that tool A is more important than tool B specifically, and that’s because the situation’s different for every entrepreneur out there. So, it’s up to you to compile your own list of such tools.

When you have them, gather your usernames and passwords for those tools and put them in either KeePass or LastPass (whichever fits you best). They will keep your passwords secured and give you access to them whenever you wish through one “master password.”

3. Have access to your data

data

Data is by far the most important asset of an existing online business. In fact, whatever we do on our computers is some form of operation on data. Maintaining access to our data while on vacation is therefore crucial. (Again, not to actually be able to continue working, but as a “just in case” thing.)

Now, the problem here is that you won’t have your data “with you” if it’s sitting only on your local computer in your home office. The only possible answer is cloud-based backup or data synchronization services.

Long story short, when it comes to syncing, I recommend SugarSync. It will take care of your files and directories, store them securely in the cloud and synchronize them across all your devices and computers.

Also, there are various mobile apps available for SugarSync so you’ll be able to have a look into your hard drive from anywhere.

The simplest 5GB plan is available for free.

4. Have access to your email

Yeah, I know, it does sound basic, but hear me out. What I mean is placing your email in the cloud too (just like your data) instead of tying it with just one computer.

If you’ve been using Gmail since forever then you can simply skip this point because you have this taken care of. If not, then I highly encourage you to start using it.

For me, the best thing about Gmail is that you don’t have to settle for a stupid @gmail.com email address. You can just take your existing email that’s hooked up to your custom domain and link it with Gmail.

Once you do that, Gmail will take over the management of your account and display your emails inside a clear Gmail interface. Personally speaking, the day when I switched to Gmail was the day I enabled myself to be on top of things no matter where I am.

5. Powerful devices

The only sad (or maybe not even sad) fact about all of the above is that you can’t enjoy any of this if you don’t have access to a powerful device, i.e. if you don’t have such a device with you on vacation.

These days this is pretty much taken care of by any smartphone or tablet you can put your hands on. And for some tasks, there are way better mobile apps available than their desktop alternatives.

I guess the only reason I’m mentioning this here is just to ensure you that you don’t need a fully functioning computer (like a laptop) to take care of your business when you’re abroad. So just relax, grab your phone and you’re going to be okay.

6. Working with a virtual assistant

Finally, there’s one more thing that can be helpful and make your vacation more enjoyable, but is not mandatory, so no sweat.

If you’re working with a virtual assistant then put them in charge of the standard stuff that goes on in your business when you are absent. And most important of all, make them the gatekeeper against everything that tries to reach you.

In other words, if someone sends you an email, it should go to your VA. And if the thing is important enough to bother you, it is only then that it should be sent to you personally.

Also, giving your VA some decision power is a great way to test how well they can manage to handle those tasks without you. Then, in the future, you can decide to delegate these tasks to them altogether.

Vacation time!

Okay, I guess that’s it. Points 1-5 is what I’ve been doing for a while now and I’ve never had to face any problems that were beyond anything I could handle. Of course, in the end, some things didn’t get done, but it was only because of my conscious decision not to bother with them and just go to the beach instead.


Online Entrepreneur on Vacation? What to Do to Keep Your Finger on the Pulse | newInternetOrder.com

puffIt’s funny how easy it is to mess up something that you’ve been building for months or even years. Although maybe funny is not the word I’m looking for… Peculiar – that’s the one!

Anyway, today it’s all about taking a broader look at our businesses and our personal behavior as online entrepreneurs. All this so we don’t have to witness our efforts go down the drain one day.

Quite surprisingly, most of the serious business-related problems are of internal nature rather than a result of some external happenings. In other words, WE are the most common reason of our business’ failure. It’s not the competitors, the market, the audience, or whatever else you might be thinking of.

This list is exactly about these internal problems that lead to the failure of your online business. In short, it’s how we can prevent ourselves from ruining our businesses.

1. Thinking you’re unique

I don’t know who am I stealing this expression from, but one of the most predictable aspects of human nature is that we all think we’re unique. And even more predictable is the fact that when you were reading the previous sentence, you got the impression that it was still about other people because you are truly unique nonetheless.

Well, here’s the thing. We’re all much less unique than we think. And the same thing goes for our businesses.

Chances are that no matter what your business offers, other people already came up with a similar idea in the past. More than that, they are probably still here figuring out how they can outperform you. So, the only way you can succeed is not by thinking how my business idea is going to make me win, but how my execution of the idea is going to make me win.

This is an important mind shift and it actually makes us much more aware of the situation we’re in. Once we abandon the idea of being unique, we can focus on other much more important down-to-earth aspects of running a business.

2. Tomorrow

Time flies. Like hell it does.

Chris Rock – one of the best stand-up comedians of our time (my opinion) said one interesting thing:

“When you have a career, there are not enough hours in a day. But when you have a job, there are too many hours in a day.”

Even though the way he says it still makes it funny, it’s as true as it can be. And the quiet killer in this whole thing is the mindset of doing things “tomorrow.” And I don’t mean that consciously planning things to be done at a later time is bad. No. I mean that treating the practice of postponing things as a way of solving them is nothing but walking on thin ice.

Tomorrow never comes. If you want to get something done, get it done today.

3. Too much focus on education

We obviously need some business education. But the keyword here is “some.”

Information overload really is a plague these days and it’s really REALLY easy to get completely lost in consuming yet another blog, another article, or another e-book. And you do all this without actually taking any action along the way.

This is something I was guilty of doing at the beginning of my career. I felt like a shark in a suit… like I knew everything there is to know about business. The only problem was that I had nothing to back up my “expertise.” I’m quite embarrassed to admit that it took me way too much time to get out of this mindset.

Anyway, in short (catchphrase definition):

Disregard education, take action.

Which brings me to:

4. Pursuing the next big thing

This was my other problem some time ago (damn it, I don’t know what I was thinking back then).

Basically, anyone who’s just getting into business or is experiencing some sort of difficulties in business later on (in general) is very prone to any “magic-bullet solution” that’s being advertised to them. This is a consequence of focusing too much on education. Quite simply, by going after a lot of information every day, you will inevitably stumble upon some magic-bullet solutions sooner or later.

The simplest way of not getting tricked into believing that this particular thing is going to save your business is to ask yourself a question: Does it sound too good to be true? If so, then it most likely is.

5. Acting like you’re a big shot

In any business, no matter what your niche is, you will come across different types of people. There are people who are just starting out, people who already have a position on the market, people who actually are big shots, and a small number of top players – the rock stars.

Now, for some reason, almost anyone who’s somewhere in the middle of their journey thinks that they’re a big shot already (it probably has something to do with the idea of being unique). And sadly, I can see this happening all the time.

Just to give you a simple example, if you’re a little guy, writing to Darren Rowse and asking him to exchange guest posts with you won’t probably play out all that great. Another similar scenario is reaching out to Neil Patel and offering an email marketing cross-promotion.

The thing is, if you’re just starting your pursuit of online business greatness and you want to do something with the big guys, you will have to offer them significantly more than what you’re asking for in return.

6. Disregarding your peers

I wish I knew this earlier, but growing together in a small mastermind group or even with a close business contact is significantly easier than doing it alone. Whatever stage you’re at, find your peers, reach out to them and propose some kind of cooperation that will benefit all of you. Create a syndicate or something, I don’t know.

The idea is that once you are all big shots, you will have a great team to do business together, instead of having to look for new contacts from scratch.

7. Believing; without taking action

Last but not least, I want to tackle this “law of attraction” bullshit. And I don’t even have the energy to elaborate on this. I just have one thing to say, here goes:

If anyone thinks that all they need is to believe in success then it serves them right…

Here’s a better idea, one that actually works: Don’t think. Do.

Okay, I should probably apologize for making this sound a bit negative. But I’m really sad to see people who can’t find any results in online business purely because they spend way too much time researching things, planning things, believing things, learning things, buying things, content-marketing things, thinking about things, postponing things and so on.

As counterintuitive as this might sound, sometimes doing things first and thinking later really is the superior way.


How to Mess Up Your Online Business in Just 7 Simple Steps | newInternetOrder.com