Author's Sidebar: I never planned to start my own business. In fact, I think that most of us never expected that we would be running our own business. Why? Because school and college, for the most part, don't teach us how to be entrepreneurs and start our own businesses.
I think that many of us (unless we're already in the medical field) are presented with the idea of running our own business usually via a multi-level marketing (MLM) company that sells health-related products.
All that is required is some knowledge about food and nutrition and a strong desire to want to help people with their health problems.
And, so we purchase a kit, invite some friends over, get a few to buy in; and, we're on our way.
Working in multilevel marketing (MLM) or network marketing is one way to get started in the health business, especially if you don't know how to start your own business.
However, just like any other business, multilevel marketing requires hard work, dedication, organization and patience.
Also, keep in mind that MLM has limits and may prevent you from growing and expanding your business into other areas.
Also, some MLM businesses have been cited for dishonest business practices and being outright scams, so be careful. You don't want your reputation ruined because of another company's practices, so do your homework.
The real key is to figure out what type of business aligns with your knowledge and skill set; and go in that direction. Then, obtain any education that you may need about food, nutrition, health coaching, diseases, other health problems, etc.
And, make sure that you treat your MLM business like a business, not a hobby or a social gathering!
Many years ago, I worked in the MLM world where I met a lot of great people, but, I also met some people who weren't that great.
However, it wasn't until I survived a diabetic coma and wrote a book that things really took off for me from a business perspective.
So, the key is to combine your personal experience of improving your own health (or the health of your child or a friend) with your skills and people connections to take your business to the next level. And, don't forget that your business is YOU, not the products that you sell.
What You Need to Start Your Own Health Business
The primary ability or drive that you need to start your own health-related business (or write a book) is the desire or motivation to want to help other people.
I know ... I'm beginning to sound like a broken record. But, as long as you have a strong desire and drive to help others, this will allow you to overcome the excuses that have been keeping you from starting your own business (or writing your own book).
Beyond having the desire to help other, the minimum set of skills and abilities that you need to start your own health-related business (or write your own book) include:
- Socializing (with family, friends, colleagues, etc.)
- Networking (with others in-person, phone, email, social media)
- Speaking (1-on-1, public, group)
- Reading Comprehension (to understand what products/services to sell)
- Writing (To create text documents, write-ups, emails, letters, posts, etc.)
Beyond those basic skills, some additional skills that will help to make it easier and save you some money include:
- Research (To be able to perform research in the library and on the Internet about nutrition, diseases, products, etc.)
- Accounting/Mathematics (To track your business expenses and profits)
- Empathizing (Ability to "connect" emotionally with others)
- Computer (Email, MS Word, PowerPoint)
- Internet (Websites, Blogs, Social Media)
- Marketing (to promote yourself and your business)
- Selling (to engage customers to buy your product/service)
It is not necessary that you have all of these skills and abilities, but, it will make it a lot easier to start your business and keep you from having to spend a lot of money to get started with your home business. Also, it would help tremendously if you have a great idea for your book or for your business.
If you are already a healthcare, wellness or nutrition professional, then, you already have more than enough skills to expand your business and grow your revenue streams.
All you need is the right guidance and training to help you -- namely, our health coaching ebook, start a business ebook, or our professional diabetes training program and training kit.
Importance of Technology in Business
Author's Perspective: Technology is a beautiful thing especially if you know how to use that technology to improve your life. Two of the most powerful technologies from the 1980s and 1990s have grown such that more and more people are able to live better lives. Do you know what those two technologies are?
Hint: If you're reading this web page, then, you are using both of those technologies -- namely, the personal computer and the Internet.
The convergence of the personal computer and the Internet has fueled a major shift in the way we live, work and communicate. This convergence allows us to learn about things that used to require us to go back to college or it required us to spend a lot of time in the library doing research.
Now, you can accomplish a lot of this and other activities in the comfort of your own home -- especially if you like to write and do research. Unfortunately, most of us either misuse or under-utilize our personal computer and its connection to the rest of the world via the Internet. Most of us use our computer for things like paying our bills, shopping online, playing video games, and socializing via platforms such as Facebook and Twitter.
But, the real power of the personal computer and the Internet can help you address two of the top problems that most of us will face during our lifetime. One of those problems is financial -- unless you're related to Bill Gates or Warren Buffett. :-) The other problem is our health -- sooner or later either we get sick or a loved one in our family gets sick.
Fortunately, there are thousands of ways that your computer and the Internet can help you with your finances and/or your health -- as long as you're willing to put in the time and effort -- to first figure out how to help yourself, and, then, use that experience to help others. But, if you're going to just sit around and complain or regret what has happened to you, then, your computer can't help you.
On the other hand, if you're motivated to either improve your health or improve your finances, then, your computer can be a true Godsend. Just start using some of the free Internet tools and social media platforms to get you started, i.e. Google, Gmail, Blogger, YouTube, Facebook, Flickr, Twitter, Picasa, SlideShare, MySpace. Some of these platforms will actually pay you! Technology is great if you know how to use it ...
If you're not sure how to get started, read this web page for some ideas for generating a secondary income. But, more importantly, think about who you are. What do you really like to do? If you didn't have to worry about paying bills, what would you be doing with your life? What would get your juices flowing such that you would jump out of bed every morning with enthusiasm and joy?
Then, think about the major challenges and problems that you had have to overcome and deal with during your life. Some examples may include things like raising a family, putting your kids through college, getting a college degree, improving your health, losing a lot of weight, serving in the military, overcoming abusive parents, helping others ... the list goes on and on.
Then, think about what you're really good at -- writing? talking? planning? mathematics? raising your children? working? helping others? convincing others of your point of view? making friends? fixing things? ...
Then, think about how to converge what you like doing with what you do well and with the challenges and problems you've had to overcome during your life.
Then, do your own research in an area that garners a lot of interest from you. Don't focus so much on how to make money -- instead focus on how to help others -- learn how to be a true servant first.
If you do this, you'll be well on your way! If you have any questions, feel free to call our toll-free number or contact us via email.
Personal Observation: I have met many healthcare professionals and business entrepreneurs in the health & wellness industry over the years. It simply amazes me how so many people spend so much time pushing "the next great supplement" or some other product -- while ignoring their greatest product of all -- themselves! So, the most important piece of advice that I can give you is to not underestimate your own story and consider writing your own book. And, if you lack certain skills (i.e. writing, public speaking), then, take a class at your local community college or go online.
Who Gets Involved in the Health Business?
Author's Perspective: Most people who get involved in health care and the health & wellness industry do it because they want to help people improve their health. The good news here is that there is such a broad range of professions and required skills that almost anyone can get involved in these industries.
If you are fortunate, you end up with a job that you love, a job that allows you to take care of your family, and a job that is fulfilling and allows you to help a lot of people. Unfortunately, some of us end up with a job that we love, but, it doesn't bring in the income that we need to take care of our family.
But, as you are aware, you can expand the scope of your job by getting some additional education in a specialty field or complementary field that allows you to make more money and relieve the stress of not making enough money to pay the mortgage and other bills.
In addition, you can use your experience and skill set to start your own business to supplement your salary. For example, if you like to talk, you can be very successful conducting lectures and 1-on-1 counseling.
Another example: if you like to write and do research, you can make money as a blogger, a writer and/or a researcher working from home on your computer! Having the skills of a writer and a researcher is ideal for making money working from home. But, most people are unaware of how to use all of the free technology and tools on the Internet to run a successful business from home.
Author's Sidebar: I started out in the health & wellness business years ago by selling various MLM health products. Although, I was somewhat successful (financially) in the MLM business, I realized that a majority of people in the MLM business were making the same mistakes, preventing them from generating a significant revenue!
I also realized that I could help a lot more people and make a lot more money by starting my own business (along with my MLM business).
I also realized that working with Corporate America (where I spent 25+ years) would generate a lot more revenue than going after customers on a singular basis. As a result of my success, we now provide support to organizations, companies, professional groups, and thousands of diabetics and non-diabetics in the U.S. and around the world.
The key is to leverage and optimize what you do well to help more people and, as a result, make more money. However, be careful not to make the same mistakes that some people make when they start their own home business, i.e. no bio, no skills analysis, no business plan, no marketing plan, treating business like a hobby.
Other mistakes include not using the 12 marketing strategies, overlooking the 6 marketing communications methods, focusing on the wrong area, lack of drive/motivation, mismatched skills, lack of skills, poor branding, ineffective website, misuse of Internet tools & technology, poor networking, poor communications, and weak relationships.
Health Coaching Business Growing!
Health coaching and other healthcare professions are growing at significant rates because more and more people are looking for non-drug solutions to their health problems.
Diabetes is growing at epidemic levels, plus almost 1 out of every 2 people in America is overweight and 1 out of every 3 people has high blood pressure and/or high cholesterol.
So, there is a huge market for alternative care solutions such as health coaching, dieting programs, etc.
But, more than 90% of these healthcare businesses fail or they limp along and don't make any significant income.
Here's a classic mistake that health coaches and other business people make when they start their business: They get excited about a great business idea so they design a website and 6 months later, they're disappointed because they're not making any money, so they move onto something else.
Unfortunately, they fail to realize the business/marketing mistakes and website design mistakes that they made, so they're doomed to keep making the same mistakes ...
There is an even bigger mistake that health coaches and other business people make. This one mistake limits their ability to generate multiple revenue streams, preventing them from producing business revenues in the 6-figures range.
How to Make Money with the DTD Program
If you are just starting out as a healthcare professional or if you have an established health business, you can generate additional revenue for your business by utilizing the Death to Diabetes Program in one of 4 ways:
1. Affiliate Program: You can join our affiliate program by filling out the DTD Affiliate Form.
2. Sell Books: You can purchase our books at a bulk rate discount and sell them at retail. Contact our office for the price points.
3. Conduct Workshops: Use our DTD Health Coaching & Training Program to run your own workshops and training classes.
4. Provide Health Coaching: Use our DTD Health Coaching & Training Program to provide health coaching to your diabetes clients.
Please Note: Actually, you can use all 4 methods to generate additional revenue for your business.
How to Make Money Right Away with the DTD Program
Here are just a few ways to make money with the Death to Diabetes Health Coaching Business Program:
- Purchase DTD books in bulk to get a bulk-rate discount and then sell them at retail.
- Conduct diabetes workshops, lectures, etc.
- Conduct online diabetes training classes, seminars, etc.
- Provide diabetes wellness training to other healthcare professionals.
- Provide online training to diabetics in other countries.
- Provide corporate wellness education to the employees of various companies, organizations, and groups.
- Conduct 1-on-1 health coaching consultations with diabetic clients, families, etc.
FYI: Selling the author's book is probably the easiest way to get started and make a profit. However, if you like public speaking, then, conducting your own workshops and classes is a lot more lucrative. All you have to do is download the PowerPoint slides and press Play! (The author speaks on each slide, so you don't really have to know that much about diabetes!)
Multilevel Marketing (MLM) & New Entrepreneurs
Author's Perspective: Despite what you may have heard, you don't really need a lot of money to start your own small business -- just a good idea and your passion and drive to want to help other people.
And, if you learn how to leverage two of the greatest technological inventions available to all of us, you can live the life you were meant to live.
In fact, many of you have probably already tried to start your own business, working as a health coach, life coach, teacher/trainer, personal trainer, dietitian, nutritionist, diabetes educator, wellness consultant, diabetes health coach, health advocate, chef (or cook), multilevel marketing wellness consultant (MLM), or other healthcare professional.
But, at this point, you're not really sure how to get your business going or where to start. Or, if you've been in business for a few years, you're probably disappointed that you're not making a lot more money. Right?
Well, don't worry! -- it happens to the best of us! So, don't give up! You have skills and gifts that can help others. You just need to figure out how to market and leverage your skills!
Many entrepreneurs and people like yourself who sincerely want to help others end up in some aspect of the health & wellness business by becoming one of the following: a health coach, trainer, personal trainer, dietitian, nutritionist, chef/cook, diabetes educator, wellness consultant, counselor, trainer, teacher, health advocate, or other healthcare professional; or, by joining an MLM company or similar business.
Over the years, most people have acquired a rich set of skills from their parents, high school, college, trade school, servicing our country, working for a living, helping their church, doing volunteer work, teaching a class, raising their kids, etc.
Unfortunately, most people take their skills for granted, and fail to realize the true value of their skills; and, how to leverage those skills to start a business and make some real money.
In most cases, you are able to help people, which makes them feel good, and it also makes you feel good. But it doesn't really help to pay all the bills or allow you to significantly improve your standard of living. And, if you have growing children or even teenagers or young adults, they're not benefiting from what you're doing.
Because most of us don't know how to start a business, we sometimes defer to something like a multi-level marketing (MLM) company that already has the built-in infrastructure to allow you to sell their products to your family, friends, co-workers, and neighbors. Or, maybe we do volunteer work or teach a community class about something we do well, i.e. math, gardening, cooking.
The MLM company provides a slick marketing presentation that convinces you that their product is "the best". But, in most cases, the products are low quality and/or over-priced in order to generate enough revenue to clear a profit. New clients such as yourself are bamboozled into pulling in your family and friends to buy this new-fangled MLM product that is "the best in the world".
Within a matter of several months, you discover that your focus has shifted from helping people to figuring out how to make more money. But, the only people who are really making a lot of money are the people at the top of the MLM pyramid.
After a few years, most people become disappointed and move on to a new MLM company, thinking that this time it's going to be better.
Note: If you are currently involved in network marketing with an MLM company, you have it within you to be successful by leveraging the infrastructure of the MLM company. But, even if you are already successful, we can still help you and show you how to grow your business beyond what you expect.
On the other hand, if you are struggling a little bit, we can still show you how to leverage your network marketing skills to be very successful. Based on the author's experience with network marketing, he has discovered that most network marketers inadvertently make the same 3 mistakes over and over, preventing them from creating multiple revenue streams for their business. This is addressed in the author's business training program to avoid these common mistakes.
Note: Some MLMers are unaware that they are nothing more than a free sales labor force for the MLM parent company! The MLM company reaps all the benefits and takes no risk -- they don't have to pay out any salaries or pay for any health benefits, while taking in huge sales revenues for overpriced products, while paying out a miserly commission! However, you can still reap tremendous benefits by leveraging the company's infrastructure to grow your business.
If you're not involved in the MLM business, maybe you're a community volunteer, or maybe you teach a community class about something that you do well, i.e. math, budgeting, gardening, cooking.
I went through this and quickly discovered that this type of MLM business model was seriously flawed for the majority. This led me to hundreds of others in similar businesses that were failing. So, I quickly learned not to make the same mistakes; and, how to "connect" with the customers.
I also went through this as a volunteer math tutor -- the organization that was sponsoring me benefited, the children benefited, but it didn't really put any money into my pocket -- not that I was looking to get paid. :-)
How to Connect with Potential Customers
Author's Perspective: After I recovered from my near-death coma, I was asked to speak at several churches, several health fairs and a couple of conventions. But, I knew that all the interest and enthusiasm that people had about my miraculous recovery, would eventually dissipate and people would stop showing up for my talks and lectures.
I also realized that I couldn't afford to keep running around town doing lectures for free, especially with gas prices starting to rise. :-)
The talks and lectures started to become even more expensive when people and organizations outside my state would call or email me requesting me to speak in their city. As a result, I had to request that they pay for my room & board, and travel expenses (gasoline, airplane ticket); and, also pay for my time for doing the lecture.
So, you would think the number of requests would decrease, right?
But, instead the number of requests increased! And, because of the number of requests, I couldn't meet the demand. So, I trained others, and developed a train-the-trainer program.
As a result, my business grew beyond "just the book", which led me to other products and services for my business.
But, the key was I started in one niche market, became an expert in that niche market and, later, was able to expand to a new niche market.
Over the years we have met a lot of healthcare professionals (i.e health coaches, wellness consultants, nutritionists, nurses, dietitians, trainers, etc.) and other people trying to launch various health-related businesses, and we have discovered that they make the same 7 common mistakes over and over!
In fact, even experienced entrepreneurs make some of these mistakes! These mistakes include no business plan, no marketing plan, limited use of the 12 major marketing strategies and 6 marketing communication methods, no real passive income strategy, lack of multiple revenue streams, limited focusing on the wrong market, lack of drive/motivation, mismatched skills, lack of skills, poor branding, ineffective website, misuse of Internet tools & technology, poor networking, poor communications, and weak relationships.
The good news is that if you avoid these mistakes, you can make a lot of money and help a lot of people at the same time!
So, think about it: The health & wellness industry is growing and health coaching is growing, so why is the failure rate so high?
How do you avoid from failing? How do you avoid the 7 common mistakes that most health coaches and other healthcare professionals make, even the experienced ones?
If you want to learn how to avoid these mistakes and if you're really serious about starting a successful business, or generating multiple revenue streams, then, I recommend that you get my 300-page How to Start a Business With Little Money book.
This comprehensive 310-page business book is one-of-a-kind because it goes far beyond just explaining the business and marketing strategies. It explains step-by-step how to use the 12 key marketing strategies and the 6 marketing communication methods, which will grow your business and increase your revenues.
This book explains how to implement multiple revenue streams -- not just the one or two that most business people do! This book is one-of-a-kind because it shows you step-by-step how to implement these marketing strategies almost immediately and how to re-design your website to optimize your business and attract new customers all within 30-45 days!
If you want to improve your skills and help others improve their health and their understanding of nutrition; and, if you want to gain credibility while growing your health and nutrition-related business, then, get my How to Be An Effective Health Coach book.
Note: This book will still help you even if you are a life coach instead of a health coach.
Small Businesses and Home-based Businesses
According to the U.S. Gov Small Business Administration, the small business trends are positive with the business revenue increases, employment increases, and business bankruptcies trending down over the last few years.
However, the overall survival rate of startups as reported by SBA.gov follows a curve, which hasn't changed much in the last 15 years, where 80% survive the first 2 years of business, 50% survive year 5, but, only 25% of startups survive 15 years or longer. However, internet-based businesses have a much lower success rate of 50% for 2 years of business, 20% survive year 5, and, only 5% survive 10 years or longer.
About 70% of home-based businesses will succeed in their first 3 years, compared to 29% of other business ventures, according to the Home-Based Business Institute.
Annual Revenues of the Home Business Industry
Entrepreneur magazine estimates that $427 billion is generated each year by home-based businesses. Pittsburgh Business Times states that’s bigger than General Motors, Ford, and Chrysler all put together!
Spare time turns into full-time for 50% of home based business owners.
Female-owned businesses are being created at about twice the rate of male-owned business.
There’s an estimated 10.7 million self-employed women, a 77% increase since 1983, compared to a 6% increase in the number of self-employed men.
About 44 percent of all home-based businesses require less than $5,000 for startup costs.
The Internet Home Business Success Rate
Only 1 out of every 20 internet home-based businesses succeed. That's a 95% failure rate!
A well-structured and organized home business can develop numerous streams of income for you, including passive income that can enable you and your family to grow to be financially well-off and even develop lasting wealth (financial freedom).
You can improve your odds for success. For starters, you must be certain that you actually want to pursue a home business. Although you can get rich online, as millions have done, and even though it is quicker than traditional company ventures, creating an effective and profitable company takes knowledge, credibility, time, effort, and consistent work. Individuals who are looking for a way to get rich without putting in the work will eventually fail.
One more frequent pitfall of internet home-based businesses is trying to sell just one or two products, or products that are questionable or possible scams. Most of these types of businesses fail within 1-2 years, which can be quite frustrating for those who invested months of time trying to make it work.
Another pitfall is that entrepreneurs fail to invest in themselves and acquire the necessary knowledge and education that they need to successfully run a home-based business. Just because it's a "home" business does not mean you don't need to educate yourself! Take some courses and/or read some books on starting a business, and on network marketing and advertising.
Success of Home-based Businesses
As the economy clings stubbornly to a recession, the home-based business market still continues to grow. With record levels of unemployment and job uncertainty for those still employed, the investigation of home businesses and start-ups increases. Here are some statistics.
Home Business Growth: The number of home-based businesses ranges up to 38 million, depending on who is doing the counting (U.S. Census statistics). According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the number of home-based businesses in the U.S. exceeds 18.3 million businesses.
Home Office Households: In addition to home business activity, between 34.3 million and 36.6 million U.S. households have active home offices (research firm IDC), and these numbers are growing substantially. The number of U.S. households that operate a full or part-time home-based business exceeds 12 percent (Office of Advocacy, Small Business Administration).
Success Rate of Home Businesses: Although difficult to track, it is estimated that nearly 70% of home-based businesses succeed for at least a three-year period (compared to 29% outside the home business ventures). The higher success rate is due to the ability for home-businesses to be operated part-time around a day job.
Note: HBM estimates that 50% of the households in the United States will be involved in a home-based business.
The Health Coaching Business
You may be pleasantly surprised to know just how well health coaching is taking off as a career choice.
Studies which verify their effectiveness are beginning to gain traction, and corporations and physicians’ offices are beginning to take note.
Dr. Mehmet Oz has said that health coaches are crucial in changing the culture of wellness in America. More doctors now agree that health coaching will not only help the patient, but, will help the doctors as well. Why are doctors changing their minds about health coaching?
First of all, Alternative Medicine has been growing because people are tired of taking so many drugs offered by Western Medicine. People are looking at various therapies offered within Alternative Medicine because they're looking for non-drug solutions to their health issues.
Medical doctors in Western Medicine don't want to lose their patients to the world of Alternative Medicine. Hiring a health coach is a small price to pay to keep one''s patients.
In the meantime, because of the demand for non-drug therapies, and because of the growth of Alternative Medicine, the field of health coaching is growing even faster.
Within the field of Health Coaching, the demand for diabetes coaching is growing significantly faster than the other major types of health coaching (i.e. life coaching, weight loss coaching, general health coaching).
Why is the demand for diabetes health coaching growing so fast? Because diabetes (specifically Type 2 diabetes) has continued to grow at epidemic levels during the past 10 years.
As a result, the demand for more diabetes health coaches has continued to exceed the available supply of diabetes health coaches who truly understand the complexities of this disease. If you are looking for a field that is growing and will continue to grow for the next 20 years, then, diabetes health coaching is a great choice.
Note: Even though the demand for diabetes health coaching is growing, the available health coaching training programs do not adequately cover and explain the science of diabetes and nutrition.
As a result, most health coaches are not equipped to effectively help most Type 2 diabetics with their disease. This has led some companies such as the Death to Diabetes, LLC company to offer a health coaching business book and diabetes training program for health coaches who are interested in diabetes and are also interested in growing their business.
Health Coaching and Healthcare Costs
As opposed to a traditional health care system in which the patient is prescribed drug-focused treatments by their doctor, a health coach helps the patient to be more proactive in their medical care utilizing non-drug behavioral treatment methods such as dietary and lifestyle changes. The health coach can help in focusing on the aspects of the patient's health that is most important or most troubling, and work to find a treatment approach that meets the patient's personal needs.
With healthcare costs continuing to rise, and health crises (such as diabetes) so difficult to manage, this burgeoning field of health coaching aims to support clients and patients in taking better care of themselves for the short term and long term.
You can now find health coaches in your local doctor’s office, at your local pharmacy, or they can be hired by healthcare facilities (hospitals, private practices, etc.) or even business corporations as a part of a company’s preventive health care program.
Due to the rise of corporate wellness programs, companies want healthier employees to increase productivity and lessen health insurance claims which explains why health coaches are becoming more and more employed or consulted in this work setting. And, as credibility gets established, demand will grow even more.
Although most insurance companies may not yet cover health and wellness coach consultations, given the requests from so many employees, it may not be long before health insurance carriers add the health coaching service to their benefits packages.
If you are interested in starting your own health coaching or consultant business, you may want to consider taking an online training course. They are often affordable, self-paced, professional and can give you very specific information for your area of need or help you clarify your life direction and career path. For more details, refer to our blog post about training schools.
If you would like to become a personal health and wellness coach, you can begin your own business after taking an online health coaching certification program, including the program offered by the Death to Diabetes, LLC company.
Why Some Health Coaches Struggle
Although health coaching is one of the top-growing businesses in the wellness industry, it can still be a struggle in the beginning.
Unfortunately, some of us may inadvertently restrict our revenue growth and not even realize it! We also tend to make the same mistakes as other business entrepreneurs.
Some examples of those mistakes include (but are not limited) to the following:
- Trying to service everyone and ending up servicing no one.
- Underestimating your own experiences; and, failing to design your company around who you are -- your strengths and skill set and why you're really in the health coaching business.
- Note: Trying to do what someone else is doing is a recipe for failure.
- Not recognizing your true VOD or USP -- what separates you from your competition and why clients should come to YOU.
- Every business (no matter the size) performs 7 major functions. But we tend to focus on the obvious 1 or 2 functions, i.e. sales, marketing.
- Not getting the right training or not realizing what skills we're missing.
- Misusing or not taking full advantage of technology and all the free stuff out there (incl. those that will pay you!).
- Focusing on a market because that's what others are doing or because it "sounds good."
- Not putting the necessary infrastructure in place, i.e. website, blog, work processes, network, communication platforms, sw tools, etc.
- Not having a sound business plan, or having a plan that is weak or out-of-date.
Note: Obviously, you can make money without a business plan (I did and so have others). But, I found out later that I could make a LOT more money with a business plan (and infrastructure).
How to Start a Small Business
Everybody has ideas about starting a business, but most people don't act on those ideas. Why? Because they don't know how to get started.
When your business idea is fresh and exciting, it's easy to start without a thought to how it will pan out and whether it's really a good business idea for you. There's nothing worse than an unfulfilled idea. It can completely ruin your confidence. and your outlook on life. To prevent that from happening, use the following steps to guide you on your journey:
- Come up with an idea, product or service. Put it down on paper. You're more likely to succeed if you plan. Put down things like name of the business, the type of business, what resources you need, short and long term business and financial goals, etc.
- Figure out your strength (writing or speaking). Then, use that strength to communicate your message of health advocacy. For example, Mr. McCulley felt that he was a better writer than a speaker. Consequently, he focused on writing a book because it allowed him to utilize his writing skills. So, if you're better at writing, then, a book or ebook may be the best product to start developing. If you're better at public speaking, then, a CD, DVD, or being a trainer who teaches others may be a better place to start. Note: If you've written a book but it's not selling, then, you probably made 1 of the 7 common mistakes that first-time authors make when they write their first book.
- Leverage two of the greatest technological inventions available to all of us to start your business. Those two technological inventions are the personal computer (PC) and the Internet. More than 99% of homes in the U.S. have a TV, but less than 61% have a computer and access to the Internet! With a computer and access to the Internet, you can take full advantage of all the free software technology tools to build your own website, blog, write your own book, etc. Use these free software technology tools and platforms such as Google, YouTube, YouTube, Facebook, MySpace, etc. to empower you to live the life you meant to live!
- Use self-reflection to determine what significant problems you've overcome. All of us have had to overcome several significant problems during our lives such as a health problem. For example, Mr. McCulley had a serious health problem (diabetic coma) that he overcame.
- Use self-reflection to determine how you can use your skill set to help the less-fortunate. Many of us have had the opportunity to help the less-fortunate because we were good at something, like organizing an event or teaching others. For example, Mr. McCulley was a volunteer math tutor for one of the local high schools because he was so good at math.
- Define your business idea based on your strengths. Some people start a business because it's a great idea, but it turns out that it wasn't a great idea for that person! So, make sure that the great idea aligns with your strengths and skill set! For example, try to find a problem in your life that you had to overcome, and either write about it or speak about it. Why? Because no one can better explain how you overcame that problem better than you!
- If you are a health advocate, you can transform your advocacy into your own health and wellness business. Or, if you happen to be selling MLM health-related products, you can also transform that into your own health and wellness business.
- Don't try to be an expert in every area! Focus on one area, become an expert in that area, and then expand to another area. Because "health and wellness" is such a broad area that contains many niche markets, you must select a specific area to start your business.
- Develop a business plan and a marketing plan. You can't start a business that will be successful unless you have a business plan and a marketing plan! You must develop a business plan based on your business idea. A business plan is is a document that defines your business goals, the reasons why they are believed attainable, the plan for reaching those goals, a description of your products, and a description of your services. It may also contain background information about the organization attempting to reach those goals. A marketing plan is a written document that details the necessary actions to achieve one or more marketing objectives. It can be for a product or service, a brand, or a product line. Note: If you need help, contact our business office to set up a business consultation or get the How to Start a Small Business ebook/PDF to help you develop a business plan and a marketing plan for your new business.
- Sell the products of another company. If you don't have your own product to sell, you can sell the product(s) of another company by getting their products at bulk discount or by becoming an affiliate.
- Sell MLM products. Multi-Level Marketing (MLM)/Network Marketing is another way to sell someone else's products. Find a product that you believe in and sell it to your family, friends, co-workers, etc.; and, convince them to also sell the product. However, the problem with this approach is that it’s very close to a pyramid scheme and you can lose some friends or family members if you bug them too much. In essence, you make money from signing up people who sell the product. Do your own research first and make sure that the product really works -- don't rely on the company's research! Be true to yourself. Otherwise you will be wasting your time and you'll end up upsetting your family and friends.
- Develop and sell your own products! If you can write, then, publish a book or ebook -- it's easier than you realize! (We can show you how to write an ebook in 2 days!) If you're a good speaker, then, publish a CD or DVD. If you need help to figure out what product to develop, contact our business office. It's not as difficult as you think.
- Develop and sell your own services! If you're a good speaker, offer your services to be a keynote speaker at some event. If you're a good trainer, offer your services to train others. If you connect with people on a personal level, think about becoming a life coach, health coach, or counselor.
- Define your Unique Selling Proposition. Explain why people should buy from you instead of your competitors. Also, figure out how you're going to market your product. Newspapers? Website? Blog? Social Media? Through word of mouth?
- Develop your marketing and selling skills. If you don't have any experience with running a home-based business or selling a product, one way to get this experience is to become a multilevel marketing (MLM) person who sells health products for another company. Or, take an online college course or take a class at a local community college.
- Check out your competitors. How much are they selling a similar product for. Can you add something to it to make yours different and hence a better price?
- Chart your way to financial success. What price do you intend to sell your product or service for? How much will it cost you to produce? Work out a roughly estimated profit remembering to factor in fixed costs like rent, energy etc.
- Decide what type of business you would like to be -- an incorporation, LLC, etc. This is important for tax purposes. Also, this limits your liability exposure to possible law suits. You don't want your home-based business to be the cause of you losing your home and other assets!
- Think of how you're going to finance your business initially. The bank, venture capitalists, angel investors, SBA grants(government), your own savings are all options.
- Make your products and services available to customers using your marketing strategy above. Use (free) platforms such as Google, YouTube, Facebook, Twitter, etc. to promote and sell your products.
- Build a website to sell your products beyond your local community. Keep in mind that selling products on the Internet is a lot different than selling the products locally in your hometown! If you need help with your first website or if you want to improve your current website, contact our office.
- Find a free web host provider to build and store your website or blog. Warning: If you build a website from a host provider that's not charging you, keep in mind that they own your website, not you!
- Find and pay a web host provider to build and store your website or blog. i.e. GreenGeeks, GoDaddy.com, BlueHost.com, Just Host.com, iPage.com.
- Keep a close eye on your running costs and keep them in-line with your projections. Financial tracking is important especially if you don't have unlimited finances.
- Get your bank, checking, business and other accounts in order right from the start. This will save you tedious work later.
- Get a merchant account. A merchant account is a contract under which an acquiring bank extends a line of credit to a merchant, who wishes to accept payment card transactions of a particular card association brand. Without such a contract, one cannot accept payments by any of the major credit card brands.
- Build your business locally. You know your community and the people in that community. If you can build your business locally, you can use that success to build your business beyond your local community, using the Internet.
- Build personal relationships. Building relationships is critical to the long-term success of your business. Making money is important in any business, but, you must build sound relationships with your customers, business contacts, media, and other entrepreneurs. You can use social media to help build your following, but, don’t forget about the personal contacts, the 1-on-1s, the speeches, the lectures, the coaching, the training classes. Personal contacts are far more important than the impersonal contacts via Facebook or Twitter.
- Write an ebook. Write and sell ebooks and other information products. Infopreneurs make up a new class of entrepreneurs, creating and marketing information products. If you have the skills of a writer and a researcher, this is ideal for making money working from home. But, most people are unaware of how to use all of the free technology and tools on the Internet to run a successful business from home. Instead, they waste their time submitting their articles to someone else's website! No!! Do it yourself! If you don't know how, call us.
- Get published. Write and publish your own book. Outside of getting on TV or the radio, there's nothing more powerful than writing your own book and getting it published. Then, sell your book locally, but, also market your book online to increase sales volumes and your royalties.
- Write online articles. A lot of sites such as Demand Studios will actually pay you to write various articles online. Some offer up front type payments for the work, but a majority of the sites offer revenue sharing. This means that depending on how many views your article may receive, you would get a percentage of the profit. Here's where the nice part comes in though. If you do get any acclaim with the article views, then the profit you receive is generally each month- forever. As long as the article continues to get views you're getting paid!
- Talk. Talk. Talk. But, record your talks, lectures and speeches. Then, create a CD or DVD to sell. This is especially great for people who don't like to write but love to talk. The key is to RECORD your talk -- we'll show you how to convert your talk to a CD, DVD and/or YouTube video -- and make money.
- Affiliate Blog. Build an affiliate blog, promote the blog, and use it to promote affiliate offers. Start with an affiliate site like ClickBank or Commission Junction.
- Write articles. Write for revenue sharing content sites, such as eHow, Xomba, HubPages, Suite101, Squidoo, Associated Content and Helium. Choose 2-3 sites to concentrate on and build up a large collection of articles on your chosen sites.
- Online Blogging. Some bloggers earn six-figure incomes from one niche blog. Once the blog is established, you will earn residual income from older posts as well as new ones. Again, having the skills of a writer and a researcher is ideal for making money as a blogger.
- Website Ads. Add well-placed ads to your website or blog from places like Google and Media.net If a visitor to your site clicks on the ad and buys something, you get paid! But, it takes a while to build this up because you have to have a lot of people coming to your site.
- Get the word out! Publicize! Advertise! Use street marketing (also called guerrilla marketing). It is all about getting your name out there and advertising your business with little or no money. It is about replacing an advertising budget with time, energy and imagination. Every day, tell someone about your business. More importantly, if you have an inspirational story (i.e. lost weight, survived a coma), tell that story instead! People love that stuff! If you need some examples of guerrilla marketing ideas, refer to the list at the bottom of this web page.
With the advent of the Internet, online businesses are probably the easiest way to start and very much less expensive in terms of start-up cost than an offline counterpart.
However, make certain that you put in the time and the money to increase your website's visibility on the Internet. If people can't find your website, they won't know about your products and services, and you won't make any money.
If you are interested in the health industry, there are hundreds of "health & wellness" areas, i.e. nutrition, supplementation, a specific disease, detox, fitness & exercise, alternative therapies, health coaching, weight loss, spirituality, training/workshops, webinars/seminars, controversial topics, etc.
If you like to write, then, write a book or an ebook.
If you like to talk, then, record your talk to create a CD or DVD.
If you can't write or speak that well to develop your own product, then, join an MLM company and sell their products.
You can sell someone else's book if it's a good book. Buy their book at bulk rate discount, so that you'll clear a profit selling their book at retail price (Contact us if you want to sell the author's book).
You can become an affiliate and get commissions for sales referrals.
A franchise is also a good option if you don't want to start from scratch and you have the money. A franchise is a great idea although the start-up capital is way too high for most people.
Find a direct selling company that will provide you the training and support. Most direct selling companies have low start up capital compared to a traditional brick and mortar business. You can also break even rather quickly compared to the traditional business.
Keep in mind to always provide VALUE to those who may be your customers.
Find a personal business mentor that you can trust and someone who is successful in business.
If you need help setting up your first website, contact our business office concerning your website design project.
Secondary Income for You and Your Family
This message is for any of you who like to help people or happen to be involved in the health and wellness industry, e.g. health coaches, life coaches, trainers, teachers, personal trainers, dietitians, nutritionists, diabetes educators, chiropractors, wellness consultants, health advocates, cooks/chefs, retired nurses & doctors, and other healthcare professionals, and people involved in the wellness business or multi-level marketing (MLM).
If you want to increase or create a secondary income for your family, or if you want to grow your current health-related business, we work with several other companies to provide several options, depending on your business goals and skill set:
How to Be An Effective Health Coach Book: explains how to improve your skills and help others improve their health. This will enable you to gain credibility and grow your health-related business.
How to Start/Grow Your Business Book: explains how to start a business with little or no money, and how to leverage your skills to grow your health-related or other online business.
Diabetes Health Coaching Program: trains health coaches as well as wellness consultants, dietitians, and other healthcare professionals about nutrition, health, disease pathology, etc. -- so that you can perform health coaching, lectures, and other services to their clients, who are seeking guidance with their health issues.
Training Certification Program: provides comprehensive training modules for nutrition, health, disease pathology, etc. for wellness consultants, dietitians, other healthcare professionals, and corporations (with wellness initiatives) to become certified Death to Diabetes consultants; and, provide health, nutrition and wellness training to members of their community, organization, company, etc. This will enable you to be seen as an expert, which will allow you to grow your business and increase your profits and revenues.
Train-the-Trainer Training Program: provides comprehensive training modules for nutrition, health, disease pathology, etc. for health coaches, wellness consultants, dietitians, other healthcare professionals, and corporations; also, provides health coaching and certification training, plus a downloadable CD talk-track, training book, and PowerPoint presentation slides that you can use to conduct lectures, workshops, corporate training, tele-seminars, and webinars to your clients. This will enable you to grow your business and increase your profits and revenues.
Free Website or Blog: provides you with a vehicle to increase your visibility on the Internet, share your message to millions of people, grow your business, and increase your profits and revenues. If you already have a website or blog, we can provide feedback and specific actions that will increase your visibility on the Internet and grow your customer base.
Book Writing: Everyone has a story, no matter who you are. But, most of us don't realize how special we are! Sharing your own personal story will inspire your children, your partner, other relatives, and friends; and, it provides you with a vehicle to increase your visibility on the Internet, share your message to millions of people, grow your business, and increase your profits and revenues. Learn how to get your book published, or how to get an ebook developed in less than 30 days.
Note: If you already have a book but it's not selling, then, you're making one or more the common mistakes that first-time authors make, e.g. Expecting the book to sell itself, lack of key words/content in the book, wrong title or misunderstood title, poorly-designed cover, lack of a clean, concise message or solution, no marketing plan for the book, wrong target audience, no website or blog promoting your book, not connecting with your target audience(s) on a daily basis, not enough content in the book and not enough in-depth research for you to be seen as an expert. Contact our office for help.
How to Write a Book
One of the best ways to start your own business is to write a book. If you are a good writer who loves to write, this may be just what the doctor ordered.
The self-help book industry has boomed in recent years, due to the increased pace of our lives and due to the increase in diseases such as diabetes, heart disease, and cancer. People are constantly searching for ways to improve their lives, including topics such as diabetes, nutrition, health coaching, lifestyle changes, spiritual enlightenment, website design, and how to use computer technology, just to name a few.
Becoming an author is a great way to gain credibility and build your customer base -- as long as you write a book that talks to your target audience. And, because there are so many free tools and technologies, writing a book and getting published is a lot easier today.
So, if that's true, then, why don't more people write a book? Well, there are 5 major reasons why most people don't write a book:
- Time: Most people believe that they don't have the time to write a book.
- Motivation: Most people aren't really driven or motivated to write a book.
- Writing Skills: Some people don't know how to write.
- Nothing to Say: Most people believe they don't have anything to write about.
- Publishing Skills: Most people don't know how to get published.
The good news is that if you know how to write and if you're truly driven and motivated, you'll find the time to write your book. Then, once you write a manuscript, you can find a publisher that will publish your book for a few hundred to several hundred dollars.
Can I Write a Book?
Of course you can! Despite what you have heard, it's really not that hard to write a book -- if you really want to ...
Let's take a look at the 5 major reasons why most people never get around to writing a book.
1. Time: Most people believe that they don't have the time to write a book.
It doesn't require a lot of time. It's really about your priorities. Have you noticed that you find time to do other things? Change your priorities and you'll find the time! Also, don't try to do too much at one time. Set aside 15-20 minutes each day; and, work yourself up to 30 minutes, 45 minutes, and an hour.
2. Motivation: Most people aren't really driven or motivated to write a book.
This is a tough one. If you're not really motivated, it's going to be difficult. So, try to find a reason why you should write the book. Think about someone or something that you really love, for example, your children, or your husband, or your wife, or your partner, or your lifestyle. Then, think about how your book could make their lives easier or how the book may change your lifestyle.
3. Writing Skills: Some people don't know how to write.
Actually, you don't really need to know how to write with today's technology! If you like to talk, then, get a portable recorder and record what you have to say. Use an audio editor to edit your mp3 file; and, voila! -- you're just a couple steps away from having your book on an audio CD disk!
4. Nothing to Say/No Skills: Most people believe they don't have anything to write about. Or, they don't believe they're an expert at anything that they can write about.
Actually, we're all experts at something, usually through our job or other work experience. But, some people, such as housewives, believe that they don't have any work experience; and, therefore, have nothing to write about.
Well, nothing could be further from the truth! A woman who has raised 2 children and put them through college -- well that's a story! There are people out there who will want to know how you did it!
Think about any major problem you have had to overcome in your life -- these make great stories and the foundation for a self-help book!
Examples, losing weight, raising kids, growing a garden, planning a wedding, setting up a major church event, helping your parents, surviving bankruptcy, helping your alma mater, being a health advocate for your community, running a health fair, being a math tutor, being a mentor for high school students, cooking/baking, singing, being the peacemaker in family arguments, ... the list goes on and on!
5. Publishing Skills: Most people don't know how to get published.
With today's technology, getting published is pretty easy -- as long as you have the money to pay a publisher. In fact, even if you don't have the money, you can still get published!-- assuming you have the word processing, editing, and book cover design skills yourself.
And, even if you don't have these skills, you can still get your book published. This is where we can help you since the author of "Death to Diabetes" has gone through all of this himself. Just contact our office for a free consultation with the author -- he'll get you going in the right direction and will show you how to get your book published in 30-60 days!
Book Writing Tips
Here are some tips to help you if you're really serious about writing a book:
- Use your own life and work experiences to write about a topic that you are most knowledgeable, skilled and comfortable to talk about.
- Conduct in-depth research for your topic area. Find out what experts in that topic area have to say. Figure out what you have to offer that would be beneficial to your potential readers.
- Conduct a market survey of your key competitors and determine how to position your book to sell (with a great hook). This is one of the biggest secrets for turning your book into a top-seller!
Note 1: The business of writing self-help books is about establishing credibility as an expert in your subject area. If you expect readers to seek your book for advice, you need prove you aren’t just an amateur. So, it’s important to complete extensive research. The use of statistics can help you make points, show how certain techniques work, or let your readers know they’re not alone.
Note 2: Part of your research should include getting to know your target audience. Examine the type of person that you’ll be writing for, so you can develop a positive rapport and gain their trust by understanding who they are. It’s okay to address your reader as “you” and refer to yourself as “I.” This develops a warm and supportive tone that is imperative in a self-help book.
Organize your thoughts and develop an outline. Build your book around a framework of headings and subheads to help your reader easily follow along. If you're good with pictures, then, develop a flow chart or diagram that represents the structure of your book. Use a step-by-step method to explain your "program" and to avoid confusion.
Focus on just one skill or theory in each chapter, helping the reader know what they should be taking away from the material. Then, expand on each chapter to build the manuscript for your book. Use shorter paragraphs to limit each paragraph to a single idea.
Remember to stay focused on the practical – inspirational sentences and theories can be helpful, but overuse may overwhelm the reader.
Have your manuscript properly edited by a professional. You want to ensure that people don't find misspellings, typos and grammar being utilized incorrectly.
Select a great title to reach your target audience.
Come up with design for your book cover and find a reputable professional designer to design your cover as a high res JPEG and a PDF.
Make sure you tell your story as part of the book. Why? because stories sell. These Your story will create a connection with your reader and target audience.
Provide a fresh point of view that is different from other books in your genre.
For a self-help book, provide a simple solution that is easy for your readers to understand and implement. Make it as easy as possible for your readers to see how they can implement your instructions.
Speak their language, that is the language of your target audience. Speak in your voice or the voice of the reader to "connect" with your readers.
For more details about writing your first book, contact our office or sign up for a training class.
How to Start a Home-Based Business
If you're interested in becoming your own boss and want to work out of your home but are in need of some good, profitable ideas, you'll be happy to know that there is no shortage of possibilities out there, ripe for the plucking.
Some great (and profitable!) home-based businesses include computer-repair technician, bodywork/massage therapist, computer tutor, coach (business or career), technical writer, elder caregiver, virtual assistant, personal chef, Web-site designer, and pet sitter.
If none of these get you very excited, take a deep look inside yourself to see what you would like to do. Doing the work you love — and throwing your entire heart and soul into it — can make the difference between profit and loss.
If you would like to first try working at home for another company before starting your own home-based business, check out SOHO Jobs, which has a pretty good collection of reviews and links to other sites offering work-at-home opportunities.
Whether you start your own home-based business or work at home for another business, research the opportunity thoroughly before diving in too deep — there are a lot of scams targeted at people like you who want to work from home.
As you weigh the options review the following checklist to get an understanding of the logistics of that endeavor. Remember, also, that your dreams of working at home may not align with the real demands of running a business out of your house. Considering the requirements of balancing work with family might help you envision the work-at-home scenario.
Checklist for Starting a Home Business
Starting a home-based business can be a complicated undertaking. The following checklist covers the most important points that you will need to consider and will help you stay focused as you try and get your business off the ground.
1. Create a business plan. Even if you are the only one that will ever read it, it is important to plan out your business and the important milestones you hope to accomplish. See the AllBusiness.com Business Plan Center for advice on putting together this important document.
2. Establish your business entity. You will need to decide if you want to run your business as a sole proprietorship, a partnership, or a corporation.
3. Get your business license or reseller certificate. Make sure you are in compliance with your state laws and get a business license or a reseller certificate if your state requires one.
4. Check with your local zoning commission. You do not want your business shut down prematurely due to zoning laws. Make sure you can legally run your business from your home before you put in too much time and effort.
5. Purchase insurance. Determine what kind of insurance you need, and purchase this before you actually open your new business.
6. Organize your office. A well-organized office space leads to a successful business. Make sure that your office is in a place in your home where you will be able to focus on running your business with minimal distractions.
7. Purchase your equipment. Make sure that you purchase any required office equipment ahead of time. You will avoid embarrassing moments if a customer wants to fax you an order and you do not have the proper equipment ready.
8. Set up your Website. You will need to purchase a domain name and set up your Website so that it is ready to go live when you open for business. By planning your Website concurrently with starting your business, you will be able to include your domain name on your promotional material. Check out the Internet & E-Business Center at AllBusiness.com.
9. Make your schedule. Even if you do not want to work 9 to 5, you will need to create a schedule that follows somewhat normal business hours to ensure that your customers can reach you. They may not be aware that your business is in your basement and you have to get your kids to soccer practice.
10. Organize your inventory. If you plan on stocking merchandise in your home, you will need to make sure it is well-organized to facilitate a quick turnaround time. Make sure that they are easily accessible and free from dirt and debris. If you are a smoker, make sure you store your inventory in a smoke-free area.
11. Get your shipping supplies ready. You should not have to scour your house for a padded envelope when you get your first order. Gather ahead of time all of the supplies you will need, such as envelopes, boxes, bubble wrap, shipping tape, and labels.
12. Open your virtual doors. Now that you are completely prepared, you are ready to open your business up to the public.
Tip: Here are some websites to consider if you want to make some extra money or start a home business:
-- Etsy.com -- if you're crafty
-- Tutor.com -- especially if you're good in math and science, $10-$14/hr
-- Elance.com -- graphics design
-- RetirementJobs.com -- senior-friendly jobs
-- TaskRabbit.com -- errands
How to be Successful in Business
Every day, new business ventures are created. Some of these businesses will succeed, but many will fall by the wayside. Others will be able to take-off to a great start, given their ample resources and capital, but will falter along the way. Some ventures may be on a shaky ground at the start, but with perseverance and careful planning will prevail in the end.
Will your business thrive, or will it join thousands of others that have faltered along the way? Here are 12 rules to make sure your business grows and prospers:
1. Do What You Love. To do what you love, you first have to know what kind of work you really want to do. This requires intense introspection and an understanding of which kinds of work get your creative juices flowing and which kinds dry them up. Doing what you love also sometimes requires that you ignore what other people want you to do for a living.
You may decide, for example, that you'd really like to start a recording studio in your home, but your spouse or best friend may think something more practical, such as buying into a fast-food franchise, makes more sense. Ultimately, you must decide what you're going to do for a living — even if it means you can't work at home.
2. Find a Niche. For small businesses, it is best to find a niche. A small company with limited resources can efficiently serve niche markets. Concentrate your efforts on a fairly narrow market offering. This entails sticking to what you do best, and becoming an expert in that field.
Realize that it is not possible to be good at everything. By concentrating on a fairly narrow market niche, you may be able to avoid head-on collision with bigger competitors. If you are a hardware store selling everything from paints to lumber, the entry of giant retailers like Home Depot in your area can spell the end for your business.
However, you can try to limit your offering, for example, to construction of porches and decks and be the best retailer for this segment.
3. Be small, yet think big. The most common question of small business start-ups is How can I compete with my big competitors?
Small businesses have inherent advantages over big businesses, including flexibility, ability to respond quickly, able to provide a more personalized service. Make sure that your business takes maximum advantage of those areas that represent the strengths of small companies.
4. Differentiate your products. Present the benefits of your products and services to your customers, highlighting the unique solutions it offers to their problems. Avoid being a copycat; rarely do imitators succeed in the market. Study, but do not copy your competitors, and package your products distinctly.
5. First impression counts. Strive for accuracy and quality the first time around. You often do not have a second chance to make a good first impression. This entails a well-laid out store, courteous staff, and personable voice over the phone, etc.
However, if you are a one-person business working in a home office, remember that you are the center of your business and marketing efforts. Everyone you come in touch with is potentially a client or a referral to another client because they are either impressed with you as a person, impressed with your skill at providing a certain service or product.
Make sure that you are always presentable, professional in your ways and knowledgeable about your business.
6. Good reputation and Expert. Your business hinges on its reputation. It is imperative that you build a good reputation for the quality of your products and support services.
Remember that three things guarantee success: high quality goods, superior service, and your expertise. Always aim for high quality with your products. Also, ensure that the service you provide is so good that your clients will want to come back or be glad to send you referrals. Study, take courses, read a lot, etc. so that you become an expert.
People respect those who know more than they do. If you want to be an expert, acquire the knowledge by going back to college, taking college courses, obtaining certification training, and doing in-depth research.
By specializing, you assume the role of a presumed expert, even if you've just started your business. It makes good business sense for your clients to hire an expert instead of someone less experienced.
By avoiding the mistakes and dead ends that someone with less experience may make, your clients could end up spending less money by hiring you — even if your hourly rates are higher.
7. Constant improvement. Entrepreneurs know that they should not be rigid in their ways of thinking in their quest to improve their best products and services.
You risk being left behind by the fast-paced competition if you cling to the "this is how we've always done it" kind of thinking. The business environment today demands that you need to come up with new solutions fast!
8. Listen to your customers. Be market driven: Listen and react to your customer's needs. Customers need to feel that they are important to you because they are! When you focus on your customers and gain their trust, they will not only recommend you but they will also remain loyal to you.
Remember, personal recommendation and word-of-mouth are the least costly yet most effective marketing strategy for your business.
9. Plan for success. An entrepreneur should understand the power of planning. A good plan helps you increase your chances of succeeding and can help you define your business concepts, estimate costs, predict sales and control your risks.
It tells you where you are going and how to get there. Going into business without a plan is like driving into a foreign land without a road map.
10. Be innovative. Innovate your offerings constantly, keeping pace with technological changes. Use change as a springboard to improve your products, procedures or reputation. Innovation should also cover your operations from pricing, promotion, customer service, distribution, etc.
Keep your eyes for new ways of doing things, and apply those that can improve the quality of your products and efficiency of your operations.
11. Work smart. As an entrepreneur, you need to possess self-confidence, plus a never-ending sense of urgency to develop your ideas.
Studies have shown that the individuals who succeed in entrepreneurship are far-sighted and can accept things as they are and deal with them accordingly.
They know how to manage their time, realizing the importance of leisure in as much as work. These people are oftentimes quick to change directions when they see their plans are not working.
More importantly, they recognize their weak points and move on to nurture alliances and acquire the skills they need to put their business on the right track. They realize the importance of working smart, knowing that it is not the quantity of work you do, but what you do and how well you do it.
12. Treat It Like a Business. If you want your business to be a business — an organization that generates the kind of money you need to become financially independent — you have to treat your business like a business, not like a hobby or a momentary fling.
Note: If you're not having much success with your business, then, you're probably making one or more of the classic 7 mistakes that entrepreneurs make. Get the author's How to Start a Business ebook; or, contact our business office for a business consultation.
Multilevel Marketing (MLM) | Network Marketing
Multilevel Marketing (MLM) is an excellent way to get started with your own health business. Why? Because it is low risk and requires only a small investment for a "starter kit".
As long as you realize that MLM, just like any other business, requires hard work, dedication, time, and patience.
Direct selling for MLM companies like Amway, Noni, Nikken, ACN, DoTerra, Nu Skin, Usana, Pampered Chef, etc. are very popular home businesses.
Other MLM companies include but are not limited to: Avon, Beachbody, Forever Living, Herbalife, Isagenix, Juice Plus, Kleeneze, Mannatech, Market America, Mary Kay, Melaleuca, Metabolife, Primerica, Shaklee, Tahitian Noni, Visalus, and Xango.
MLM companies "employ" representatives in your community to recruit you, your friends, your family members, your co-workers, and other individuals interested in "earning income" within the walls of your own homes.
These MLM representatives pull you in with a sales pitch that says you can make money and help people improve their health by just holding a weekend party with your friends. They convince you that their product is superior and backed by science and will sell itself.
All you have to do is invite a few friends to your house to buy a small kit get started. And, if your friends buy the kit and products from you, you get a sales commission from the MLM company.
And, if you convince some of your friends to join you as sales representatives; and, if they convince their friends to join and buy your products, the friends get a commission and you get an even larger commission! Wow! Doesn't that sound great! Can you see the hundreds and thousands of dollars rolling in?
Sound too good to be true? Well, it is. Now, don't get me wrong -- some people are very successful at this, but, the majority of people fail within the first year! In fact, almost 91% of people in MLM businesses fail by Year 2.
However, for most people who want to start their own home business without having to invest a lot of time and money, a Multilevel Marketing (MLM) internet business is a good place to start -- as long as you grow your business beyond just selling MLM products.
MLM as a standalone home business is okay, but, if you're trying to integrate the MLM products into your own health business, you may want to rethink your strategy.
It really depends on how you want to establish your brand and whether that's more important than promoting an MLM company. When you try to integrate MLM products into your company's brand, there are possible conflicts of interest. There's some "good News" and some "Bad News".
-- MLM is a "popular" way for home businesses to generate passive income and grow one's network --as long as you're willing to put in the time and money.
-- MLM is a good way to diversify your business offerings.
-- Being "popular" doesn't necessarily translate to making money.
-- Some MLM companies promote that ALL of their products are great. That's just not true.
-- 95% of people in MLM lose money, plus 90% of MLM companies fail.
-- Some MLM companies push you to over-sell their products, which can reduce your objectivity.
-- You can become too focused on the MLM company instead of being focused on your own company and your brand (I see this a lot!).
-- You can lose your credibility by "pushing" an MLM company's products. Once you lose your credibility, you'll lose trust and loyalty with your customers.
So, make sure that you do your own homework and in-depth research from a business AND technical perspective; and, don't rely on hearsay and the biased enthusiasm of an MLMer. Also, make sure that you track all of your spending. Some MLMers say they're making a lot of money, but they're not clearing a consistent or substantial profit every month.
An engineer's viewpoint: Numbers Never Lie.
Why the High Failure Rate of MLM Home Businesses?
There are a lot of reasons for this unbelievable rate of failure. One primary reason is the fact that people often set their expectations too high.
They begin their very own home based business thinking it'll give them a "get wealthy quick" means to fix their problems. When it doesn't happen within a couple years, they quit! Or, they just buy the MLM product for themselves, but, they stop trying to sell the products and build their downline. Or, they move onto a new MLM company, thinking it's going to be better.
If a person started a traditional business such as a restaurant, clothing store, service station, etc., they would not expect to get rich in a couple years. So why do individuals that start an internet business think any in a different way? A business takes time, whether you are working at home, or carrying out a traditional style business.
It requires research, education, investment, planning, persistence and consistent action over a period of years to be successful in any business. Nothing happens overnight and you need to understand that an internet business isn't any different. Consistent and persistent effort is essential if you wish to be successful.
You must keep in mind that you're building a business which will generate many years of residual earnings if you're able to just remain patient and perform the things that should be done.
In addition, you should look beyond just MLM to build your business. For example, if you're selling supplements as part of your MLM business, you can grow your business by selling other health-related products.
If you're willing to spend the time to go back to school, you can obtain a degree, certification, or a license as a dietitian, nutritionist, health coach, diabetes educator, naturopath, or some other type of healthcare provider. This will allow you to grow and expand your business to attract a lot more clients and business partners.
Before you spend any money going back to school, do your research and self-evaluation to make sure that's what you want to do. Also, make sure that you have other motivations to do this besides making money! If it's only about the money, you'll eventually lose interest and enthusiasm; and, your clients will pick up on this.
The health & wellness industry is growing leaps and bounds, and can be a very lucrative business for you and your family. So, do your homework and find a niche market that fits you.
MLM Success and Drop Out Rates
The MLM low success rate and high dropout rate are due to the following:
- In the first year of operation, a minimum of 50% of representatives drop-out.
- After five years of operation, a minimum of 90% of representatives have left the company.
- By year 10, only those at or near the top have not dropped out – making it safe to say at least 95% of representatives have dropped out.
To contrast these statistics, consider the failure rates for traditional small businesses. The Small Business Administration’s statistics for 2008 found that 44% of small businesses survive at least four years and 31% at least seven year, and 39% of businesses are profitable over the life of the small business. Only 64% of small businesses fail in 10 years.
Because of the dismal MLM failure rates and other criteria, it is interesting to note that MLM businesses don’t even qualify for SBA loans or other small business funding and assistance programs.
How Much Time and Money is Involved?
For a product-centered MLM, where the product is the focus for compensation and bonuses, expenses will include the cost of a starter kit, marketing expenses, party-hosting expenses, Internet, phone, office supplies, travel expenses, etc.
For a properly launched campaign, this could run anywhere from $1,000 per year on up. The chances of being able to start a successful MLM business with little or no upfront income is slim to none. But, that's exactly what most people do! -- they try to make money without spending any money or by spending as little as possible!
Can You Be Successful Doing This Part-Time?
You can be successful as long as you are realistic, patient, motivated and passionate about helping others. If you are focused on helping people, you will be successful.
How successful you are depends on what kind of success you are looking for, and how the MLM sets up its incentive and compensation plan.
In a product-centric MLM, success may come from acquiring free or reduced product -- which is great if you love the product and your goal as a representative is to acquire as much product at as little cost as possible.
However, if cash is what you are looking to generate, the chances of making a decent part-time income of more than $500 a month are slim.
Despite many MLMs promoting their company as a great way to work part-time for a little cash for Christmas or hard times, a full or part-time MLM business doesn't come cheap or easy.
Additionally, some MLMs require you to generate certain levels of income or recruitment levels in order to even start qualifying for compensation plans.
It is very likely that anyone trying to do an MLM business for a short period of time will find themselves in the hole financially because of products and supplies purchased upfront.
Can You Really Make Money in MLM?
Some people make lots of money in MLM, but, the percentages are pretty low. In some recent research concerning the public MLM Nu Skin, the research cited a 2008 case study which shows the number of people achieving Blue Diamond status (the highest level of earning) was 0.14% - not even a half of a percentage point.
The reality is, only a small percentage of representatives actually realize the high earnings advertised in marketing materials and meetings. It is usually only those few who joined the MLM at the very early stages of the business and who are positioned at the very top of the entire recruitment chain who are making the big bucks.
If you come in to a well-established MLM expecting to make a large income, you'll find out sooner or later that the opportunity train has already left the station. (That's one of the reasons why there are new MLMs opening up every week!)
In every case, using an analytical framework, the loss rate for all these MLMs ranged from 99.05% to 99.99%, with an average of 99.71% of participants losing money in an MLM. On average, one in 545 are likely to have profited after subtracting expenses and 997 out of 1,000 individuals involved with an MLM lose money (not including time invested).
To be clear, selling a product out of your home (also referred to as direct sales), is a viable home-based business opportunity. Anyone interested in selling a product to generate income has a high probability of success.
Having said that, however, it is crucial to research and investigate the company and products for which you want to represent. There are many single-level marketing companies where the likelihood for generating income is much higher than typical MLM statistics.
This is because compensation comes solely through selling products (no down-lines, minimums or recruitment tactics). Additionally, some MLM companies are product-centric and have compensation plans designed around richly rewarding product sales.
Guerrilla Marketing (Street Marketing)
Here's how to get started with your guerrilla marketing:
Step 1a: Develop Your "Personal Story" Elevator Speech. If you overcame a major crisis in your life, your first step is to summarize your story and have the ability to explain it to people in one minute or less. This explanation is called an elevator speech because it can be told to someone during the span of a short ride on an elevator.
Example: “I almost died in the hospital from diabetes. But, diabetes saved my life. Now, I'm helping others. If you have a friend or relative with diabetes, here's a copy of my story in the newspaper."
Step 1b: Develop Your "Business" Elevator Speech. Your next step is to figure out exactly what your business does and have the ability to explain it to people in one minute or less. This explanation is called an elevator speech because it can be told to someone during the span of a short ride on an elevator.
Example: “I have a catering business that specializes in small to medium sized parties. Our barbecue sauce is the best in the city and the kids love our hot dogs and hamburgers. Let us do the cooking, so you can focus on the party!”
Step 2a: Keep Business Cards at All Times. You don’t have to spend a lot of money on business cards. You can get free business cards at Vista Print (you must pay for shipping).
Things to include on your business card are:
- A memorable slogan or image
- Your contact information including an email address and a website
- Your name and the name of your business
- A mailing address
Step 2b: Carry Copies of Newspaper Story/Pamphlet at All Times. A newspaper story carries a lot of credibility -- it's better than the business card. If you don't have a newspaper story yet, develop a colorful 1-page pamphlet or a flier or a CD if you have the finances and computer skills.
Step 3a: Create a Website. Having a website is a must. Websites can be designed and maintained for as little as $7 to $10 a month. Of course, the cost will increase when you add more pages, an online store, a blog, an email account, and other features. Make sure you get your own domain and a good web host provider. If you need help, contact our business office.
Step 3b: Use social networking. Set up accounts on Facebook, LinkedIn, MyPage, Twitter, Ning, etc. to expand your network. It's free!
Step 4: Get a video camera and audio recorder. Record your story! Record your lectures! Record people in the street talking about your services and how iou helped them! Videos are very powerful!! So are audios, but not as much as video. and, with the popularity of YouTube, you can really get your message out to a lot of people! If you are a good talker, with a great personality, or, if you have a great story, then, video is a must for your business!
And, once you have video or audio, you can make a DVD or CD to hand out to people.
Step 5: Don’t Stop Talking. Make sure you tell everyone you know about your story and your business. Give them some of your business cards, or fliers so they can pass them out to people they know. And remember, you’re not limited to the people you know. Tell everyone: people in the grocery store, hardware store, barber/beauty shop, post office, the mall, church, parties, picnics, etc.!
Step 6a: Write an ebook. Review all your lectures, videos, audios, notes, research, etc. and write a book, based on your experiences.
Step 6b: Develop a CD or DVD. Review all your lectures, videos, audios, notes, research, etc. and develop a CD or DVD, based on your experiences.
Step 6c: Write/publish a book. Based on your ebook or CD/DVD, write a book, based on your experiences, and get the book published.
The most important part of street marketing is to deliver a great product or service. The man you met in the elevator better love that barbeque sauce and you better give him a great price.
Maybe you could charge him for 25 dinners for a party of 30 people. It’s not nearly as important to make money from him the first couple of times he uses your service as it is to have him be a return customer for years and to get all his friends to become regular customers.
Word of mouth is the best advertising and a happy customer will recommend you to everyone they know!
Find Your Niche
When you start your business and begin thinking about your brand, it’s very important that you develop a niche. A niche is a very specific product or service that you specialize in.
For example, if you are a hair stylist, your niche might be natural hair care or cuts and colors. If you are starting a landscaping business, your niche might be all-weather plants and flowers.
Learn about your competition, see what they are offering and figure out what it is that you do better than them. Maybe your cleaning service has a special process for removing pet fur and stains that seems to be much more effective than your competition.
Once you figure out what it is that you do better than your competition, you should emphasize this special product or service to your customers. Of course you want people to buy all of your products and services, but when it comes to your specialty you want to be the first name that pops into their minds. If someone has used you to remove pet smells and stains from a new home and you did an outstanding job, they are much more likely to have you do basic cleanings down the line.
It’s important not to force your niche. Maybe you thought you were much better at removing pet stains than you actually are, but your customers seem to love the way you remove grease stains. It is wise to listen to what your customers are telling you and change the focus of your specialty as needed.
Once you have identified your niche, you should brand that specialty into the minds of your customers. Here are some ideas to help you get that done.
Create a slogan to go along with your business logo that lets people know what your specialty is.
Actively market your niche if being interviewed or reviewed by local press.
Make your specialty the main focus of your advertising.
Offer a lower price on your specialty than your competition.
Develop a powerful video about your story or your product/service, and distribute it on the Internet, and hand it out as a DVD to people on the street.
How to Advertise
The most important part of any successful street hustle is getting the word out. One of the best ways to do that is to advertise, advertise, advertise!
Where to Start:
Step 1: The most important part of successful advertising is to figure out exactly who your customers are; this is called your target market. You don’t want to waste money by getting your message out to the wrong people.
Step 2: Once you know your target market, speak to them directly. That means coming up with a message that fits your customers. If you’re a hair dresser in a major city, you don’t want an old man’s voice on your radio spot! You want to talk to your customers in a language that they’ll understand.
Step 3: The hardest part of advertising is figuring out how to reach your target market. For small businesses, it’s a good idea to use local marketing. A good example of this is short radio commercials on a station that is popular with your customers.
Local radio and cable TV ads are relatively inexpensive and a good way to target your audience. Don’t worry about creating the ad, the employees at the radio station will help you develop your commercial from start to finish. They will even provide you with research about your target market.
Step 4: Make sure your advertising is memorable and professional. Remember, first impressions are important. Create a funny tagline, or slogan that people won’t forget! Add humor to your personal story.
Step 5: These days, having a good website is important. You can create a website for little to nothing. Make sure your website has all of the information your customers need such as products and services, pricing, directions, and specials!
Ideas for local advertising:
Local radio and cable television offer ad time at a reasonable rate with the ability to reach your target market.
Local newspapers are a good way to target customers. It doesn’t have to be a city wide newspaper. Your town may have a penny saver or small alternative newspaper and your neighborhood may also have a local newsletter or neighborhood paper.
You can create free ads online using websites like Craigslist, but, be careful.
Good networking is an important skill of any successful hustler. It’s important for you to get in the loop, and reach out to those around you who are doing similar things or who can help you take your hustle to the next level.
You can start by networking with other businesses in your community this is called business to businesses (b-2-b), This is a great idea because:
- You can get referrals from other business owners.
- You can learn about different resources available for local businesses.
- Instead of using money, you can barter services.
Example: If you have a coffee shop, you can use the copy machine in the bookstore for your menus and bring them free coffee and treats in exchange.
You can create promotional materials that advertise both of your businesses, and share advertising costs.
Step 1: Contact your local small business association (if you have one). You can also check with your local chamber of commerce for a list of small businesses in your area.
Step 2: After you check with these organizations, hit the streets and start introducing yourself to the local business owners in your area. Let them know what services you provide and tell them that you’re willing to refer customers to them and help them whenever necessary.
Step 3: If you need a service, such as lawn cutting or biz card design, hire a company in your area. If you give them business, they will give you business in return.
Some Business-to-Business Example Ideas:
If you have a barber shop, hand out coupons for a discounted slice of pizza (from a local pizzeria) with every cut. In return, they can hand out haircut coupons with each pizza they sell.
If you have a flower shop, provide fresh flower arrangements to the restaurants in the area, for a reduced rate. In return they can place a small sign in their entrance advertising your business.
Guerrilla Marketing Ideas
Here are some ways to promote your business with little or no money -- just your creativity and your time.
- Talk, talk, talk - Look for opportunities to tell your story to someone while standing in line at the post office, grocery store, etc.
- Buy lots of groceries. Here's an angle that the author uses every once in a while: He'll go to the grocery store and buy 20 bags of frozen vegetables. Someone in the grocery line or the clerk will always say something when they notice all the vegetables, something like: "Wow, someone really loves their vegetables!" This gives the author an opening (or excuse) to tell them that he discovered that vegetables saved him after recovery from a near-death diabetic coma. Most people pick up on the following words: "death", "coma", or "diabetes". Inevitably, someone says" "My mother is diabetic." So, the author quickly tells him his story (in 15-20 seconds) and gives everyone a copy of his newspaper article. This is just one example of why you want to be able to summarize your story in 20 seconds or less.
- Carry a copy of your book or newspaper story. There are so many creative ways to get your story out into the public. Another example: The author carries a copy of his book with him when he stops by the post office to mail some letters. Inevitably, someone in line sees the title "Death to Diabetes" and asks the author something like: "Is this book any good?" And, the author smiles and says: "I think it's a great book for diabetics -- although I might be biased as the author." This leads to a discussion with 2 or 3 people standing in line, who happen to have relatives with diabetes. Again, the author hands out copies of the newspaper story.
- Gradually, over time, people in the post office, and people in the grocery store recognize the author when he stops by. And, it didn't cost him any money or any time since he had to go to the post office or the store anyhow.
- Share your testimony in a church. In many churches they ask people to share their personal testimony. This is a perfect platform to telling people about your own personal story of recovery.
- Sell YOU. Key Point from the author: Never try to sell your product -- always focus on your story -- sell your story -- sell YOU.
- T-Shirts. This is great for turning yourself or others into walking billboard. You can give the t-shirts away as prizes which is also another great way of gaining word of mouth promotion. Your t-shirts for the prizes don’t need your website address on it. Just give away a great, fashionable shirt and that’ll have people eager to tell friends and family where they got it from.
- Buttons, pens, pencils, decals, notepads, etc. Use stationery to promote your business. Every time a person uses your pen or writes on your notepad, they'll see the name of your business.
- Business Cards. Don’t skip this one. So many people see this and think you’re going to tell them to print cards and hand them out. I’m not! What you do with these cards is head to every library or book store in your city and find the section that relates to your business. Open each and every book and place a business card somewhere in the book. This is great targeted marketing and only costs you a few bucks for the cards and an afternoon of placing the cards. If you need some great business cards, check out VistaPrinting.com or UPrinting.com
- Write a paperback book. This is a very powerful promotional tool as well as a product that will generate revenue for your business. However, not everyone can write a book that people will buy. If you're not a good writer or if you don't like to do research, this is not for you. But, if you write your own book, people will definitely see you as an authority in your niche.
- Write an E-book. This is easier than writing a paperback book. You can do this for two reasons. One, you can write an e-book on a topic in your niche and circulate it so people will start to see you as an authority in your niche, or you can also sell the ebook for a small profit and use that money to fund your business.
- Money Stamping. Grab a stamper from your local office supply store and stamp a funny phrase along with your website address on it. Have a make money online blog? Stamp something like “Learn how to make thousands of these online: site here”.
- Sticky Notes. Another way to use your stamper or even your printer. Sticky notes are noticeable anywhere because people know what they’re for notes. Put these on local business doors, offices, cars, or above mail boxes in apartment complexes and people will take notice.
- Use lots of stamps. Looking for a way to get noticed in the huge pile of advertising mail potential clients get? Send your promo material in a big manila envelope and put 22 – 2-cent stamps on it. Out of 100 envelopes, who’s do you think will catch the eye first?
- Do Not Disturb. Heading to a blog expo anytime soon? Get some door hangers printed up with your business information on it and possibly a link to something free on your site. Get the attention of everyone in your market this way, and it’s super cheap as well. No-one else I know has been doing this so you’ll stand out for sure.
- Pay it forward. When you’re heading into the movie theater, pay the persons way behind you and tell the cashier to give them your business card. You’re not guaranteed that the person will become a client but I bet the word of mouth on that one would be pretty big.
- Fake publicity stunt. You could have people picket your storefront with signs that read “This business is too nice” or “Company X is too good at their job”. There's a million fake publicity stunts, use your imagination and I bet it’ll work no matter how weird or out of the box it seems.
- Guest blogging. This is for the bloggers out there, or even the freelance writers. Guest blog on other blogs largely related, or semi-related to your websites niche. Opening other peoples eyes to your name and your website is always good promotion, especially if you’re an awesome writer. Not to mention networking with other bloggers is great for business as well.
- Bumper Stickers. These are great because they can go anywhere, not just on your car. Bathroom stalls, street poles, etc. Get creative with where you place them, they can grab peoples attention when placed in the right spots.
- Help Home Based Businesses. Most HBB owners try to keep their records hidden from local housing authorities so they’re hard to reach. Head over to your local chamber of commerce and suggest a HBB committee. They might appoint you head of it (you can even ask to be) and you have a bunch of HBB owners who will come to chat and you can promote to with business cards, flyers, booklets, ect.
- Top 10 reasons to choose YOU. Instead of leaving business cards or other promo material at a business or in someones email box, create a list of the top 10 reasons why the prospect should choose your company. Make them 100% true, humorous and memorable.
- Demonstrations. Got a service business? This is perfect for you. Find a local store that pertains to your services and put on a free demo of your services. Your service involve outdoors? Contact news stations and let them know you’ll be offering a BBQ and free service demonstration. The BBQ could get a little costly, but the amount of press and promotion could really pay off.
- Print Calendars. These could be given to each of your clients or left in a store for people to take for free. Print your website address and a little slogan or client testimonial on each months picture for exposure every day. The people using your calendars will even help you out when they have company over who will see the calendar, especially if the images you use are high end and visually appealing.
- Window decals. Get a custom printed window decal on your car with your logo/website and possibly a slogan. looks professional, and is great for red lights.
- Sponsor an event. Doing this is at most times, very inexpensive and also GREAT for publicity, especially if its a big event. You normally get your logo and business mentioned in all of the events promo material which is tons of publicity you normally wouldn’t get. Be at the event to add extra stickiness to your business name and interact with the guests.
- Holiday Greetings. Send emails or snail-mail to your past clients wishing them happy holidays (Christmas, Thanksgiving, New Years). This helps them keep your name/business in their head as well as standing out from the other people they’ve done business with before.
- Charity Donations. Donate some of the profits you generate every month to charity. Great for promotion in the media and clients to feel like they’re helping out the charity by purchasing from you.
- Hold a Contest. This could have 1-10 winners which helps the word-of-mouth promotion everyone needs and wants. You can gain free press for starting the contest, plus publishing the winners is great for more press coverage.
- Partnerships. Do you have a lawn-care business? Try partnering with a window washing company. Any partnership which benefits both companies is a great idea and a great way at grabbing the attention of new potential clients. Also a great way of giving your business targeted marketing.
- Blood Drive. Host a blood drive, contact newspapers, tv news, radio, etc. have 1-2 banners up with your website information and also have business cards at the sign in table. Everyone loves to help their country, city, state, ect. and giving blood is the easiest way for some people to do that. Putting yourself in the forefront of your cities next blood drive would make your business very visible to a whole range of new potential clients and word-of-mouth advertisers.
- Client Appreciation BBQ. Invite your past clients to a BBQ and let them invite 1-2 friends to come with them. This will help your customers LOVE you even more than they already do, as well as bring some new faces into contact with you as potential clients.
- Outdoor Signs. Ever see the huge amounts of signs in the grass for mayor elections or in the front yard of a house that just got remodeled? This is a great, and inexpensive way to get your websites name out there. Pick a great tagline or picture for the ads, and you’ll be sure to get noticed.
- Circulars. A lot of people nowadays are looking for good deals on just about anything, so when they receive the “junk mail” it’s not considered as “junk” anymore. Get a brochure put into these and you’ll have a good chance at 10-100K people to see it depending on how big the circulation is.
- Newspapers. You don’t have to just buy an ad. Today, a lot of newspapers are hurting for editorials, so if you have any copy writing skills, you can send in some editorials to the newspapers and include a byline for your company/website information.
- Magazines. Similar to above. Don’t just buy an ad that will get looked over, but write an article and if it is well written, when people read it, they’ll want to check out your website for more information on you.
- Put it on a bus. Mobile advertising is great and will get viewed by a lot of potential clients on a daily basis.
- Postcard Mailing. This is a bit cheaper then sending out envelopes that might weigh a bit and it also is easier for the potential client to read what you’re promoting without having the OPTION of opening the envelope (a postcard is one single piece of paper).
- Giving it Away. How many people will turn down a free service or product? I don’t think very many will, so your voice and company will get out there in front of a lot of people. It’s also good for press to say you’ve given away X amount of products or services.
- Enter Business Awards. From small, local awards, to big, multi-national ones like Inc., your company could benefit from the exposure inside the awards. It’s an added bonus if you win because then you have a nice trophy in the office, or ribbon on your website that says you’re a good company.
- Link Bait & Viral Marketing. This is a well known tip to bloggers and website owners but few actually use it to their full advantage. For example, create some surveys as link bait, or create some funny videos can boost your viewers in a huge way.
- Offer all the extras. If you cut grass, offer to come in the winter and shovel snow. If you cook dinners for offices or nurses at hospitals, offer to create desserts. The ideas are endless, but if you give your clients EVERYTHING, they will have nothing to go elsewhere for.
- Borrow a wall/building. Get a projector and find someone to let you use the side of their business/wall, and have your company logo/website/information shown on it every night. I know I would personally stop and look at what was showing on the side of a building for sure, so I can imagine how many others would as well.
- Own the bus stop. Not literally, but if you can get your ad on the poster area of the bus stop along with the seat inside the bus stop, you could effectively “own” the bus stop and the eyes of everyone who stands there on a daily basis waiting for the bus. Add this in with #6 and you’ve got something everyone will remember and talk about.
- Doctors Office Magazines. Slip business cards into magazines every time you go to the doctors. That’s what they get for making you sit in a waiting room for 2 hours at a time, only to be seen by the doctor for 15 minutes :)
- Sex Sells. If your business is built for it, use it. Anything that isn’t “highly upper class” could use a little sex in their ads or in various ways. You could have 5-10 bikini models picket outside your business. This will definitely grab attention of guys in cars passing by.
- Sponsor the homeless. I believe in helping people in any way possible. If you see a homeless person somewhere on your daily commute to work, or various other places, you could pay the homeless person to hold a sign that reads “YourCompany.com paid me to hold this sign”. Regardless if it brings a TON of business your way or not, at least you’ll feel good about yourself, and you’ll touch that persons life forever. Buy them lunch and dinner or take them to a grocery store and pick out some chips and various other foods they can keep with them. Buy them a hotel room for the night to sleep in and get cleaned up. They’ll gladly stand with a sign for you after you do this for them.
- Underground Music. Is there a genre of music that your target market listens to? I bet there are hundreds, if not, thousands of music groups that are unsigned and lack funds to survive off their music. Why not offer to rent the hall for their next performance in exchange for flyers and banners during the show, or passed out at the door? You can also sponsor their CD production, or offer to get their website created in exchange for advertising at their shows, on the site, etc.
- M&M Candy. If you go to the M&M website, you’ll notice that you can personalize your candy. You can use this to either promote your business or just put a thank you on the candy and give it to a client.
- Hair Salon’s and Barber Shops. How much talking happens in one of these places on a daily basis? Why WOULDN’T you want to be a business they are talking about? Drop in and offer the hair stylists some free food from your restaurant or coupons for free products. They’ll be talking about you to everyone who comes through the salon for weeks to come!
- 800 number and PO Box. If you’re looking for a company in the Yellow Pages or online and one has a home address and a number like this: 1-333-565-3245, while the one next to it has a PO Box for the address and a 1-800 number, which do you think is more likely to ‘look’ and ‘feel’ more professional? What company do you think is going to get the first call? You guessed it, the one with the 800 number and PO Box.
- Press Releases. Regardless of what anyone tells you, a well formed and well written press release can gain you a lot of attention not only from the media, but from the target market as well. Don’t let this simple tool pass you by when trying to establish your bootstrapped business.
- Airplane Chauffeur. Find out when a trade show pertaining to your business will be in town. Next, hire a student or someone who will work for a low amount of money and have them hand make a sign with your websites address on it and stand next to baggage claim or right outside the door of the airport. They aren’t picking anyone up, but the people walking by and seeing your website address don’t know that.
- Let Others Talk You Up. A lot of people will enlist their friends and family to talk to other people about their business, but why not get people who aren’t super close to you, pay them a bit of money and send them out to bars, clubs, movies, restaurants and other busy places to talk up your business. Any word of mouth is good, even if you have to by the persons dinner in order for them to do it. Every little bit helps.
Note: For more ideas about guerrilla marketing for your website and how to start your business, get the How to Start a Business ebook.
How to Generate a Secondary Income
There are many ways to generate extra income. However, you want to choose something that fits your interests and personality. You may have certain skills, training and education that will dictate what’s best for you. So while this is not one size fits all, here are several extra income ideas to consider.
Earn money from your hobbies. If you’re like most people, your hobbies cost money. They may cost lots of money. For example, a friend used to spend hundreds of dollars for new camera lenses just so he could take better photos of his children. Is there a way to turn your hobby into a money-making proposition? Even if you make just a little cash, you can help offset your costs.
In addition to the ways listed above on this web page, here are some additional ways that you can use your hobbies to bring you wealth or generate a secondary income.
Photography. You can make money by selling your photos. Plus, you'll make some money from prizes and contests.
Blogging. Blogging is one of the many ways to make money online. Blogging can be a way to supplement your income if you have subject that you’re passionate about, and if you like to write.
But blogs aren’t the only way to make money online. You could open an online store. You could sell things on eBay. Here’s a list of 10 ways to make money online.
Sell stuff. A final way to earn some extra cash is to sell things. Look in your closets. Check your bookshelves. Walk out to the garage. See all that junk? How much of it do you actually use? Couldn’t you borrow books from the library when you need them? When was the last time you played Mario Kart 64? Wouldn’t you feel better if your house were less cluttered?
As long as you don’t try to sell it all at once, it doesn’t take much time and effort to sell your used stuff to generate some extra cash.
Sell your most valuable items on eBay. Consider selling certain specialty items to specific stores: sell your used CDs to a music store, your used Nintendo stuff to a game store, etc.
Use Craigslist to sell bulky items, or to get rid of stuff that just won’t sell.
Hold a garage sale to purge everything else. (Our annual garage sale is just a month away — I can’t wait.)
Avon calling. Could you join Avon's reported 170,000 sales representatives? For every £100 of goods they sell, reps earn 20 per cent commission, rising to 25 per cent for orders over £140.
Representatives start selling directly from the Avon brochure without having to buy stock in advance and they don't have to pay until the products have been delivered to their customers. Unlike many direct selling companies, there is no substantial initial cost outlay with only a £15 registration fee.
Join an MLM Company. Working as an MLM rep is a good way to learn how to sell their products, but, you won't make much money until you start selling your own products. The MLM and their founders tend to make the big bucks. Have you ever noticed the same people starting a new MLM business every 2-3 years? That's how they make their money!
Taking Paid Surveys at Home. But, be very careful -- don't give them any money upfront! Companies desperately want your opinion, and they are willing to pay for it. The trick, of course, is knowing where to find the paid surveys that pay the best. One of the most popular and legitimate survey sites is CashCrate. Not only can you make money taking surveys, but you can also make money by referring friends and family to CashCrate.
Ebay Store. It’s now easier than ever to run an online Ebay store. You can of course acquire products to resell on Ebay. But you can also create an online store to market products that others are selling on Ebay and share in the commissions generated by the sales.
Start an Online Business. Making money online requires very little cash investment and can be done on your schedule from home. There are two approaches to getting started. First, you can build a blog. Setting up a blog takes just minutes and costs very little -- start with Blogger.com. Second, you can set up a website. It’s much easier than you think. Start with someone like SiteSell, who will walk you through how to get traffic to your site and how to make money online.
Realtor. This may seem like a crazy time to start selling real estate, but in a slow market a lot of the competition runs away. You’ll need an initial investment to obtain your real estate license, but over the long term have the potential to make substantial income.
Website Design. With the continued growth of the Internet, website design has become a growing industry. Unless you already have the know-how, you’ll need to spend some time learning the technology. But there are plenty of online resources available, and the best in the business can earn a great income.
Graphic Artist. There are a lot of ways to generate money through graphics. Just the logo business alone could keep you busy if you have the artistic skills necessary to develop cool graphics.
Virtual Assistant. Virtual assistants today can do just about anything for you that doesn’t require their physical presence. Many virtual assistants from places like India are working full time for people in the U.S. The best VAs can earn $30 to $50 per hour. The starting place if you are interested is Elance.
Freelance writer. If you have a knack for writing, you can earn great money writing for others. Not sure how to start? Contact bloggers who are always looking for great writing. As blogs grow, they can afford to pay freelancers good money for quality articles. Websites looking to build links also hire freelancers to write guest posts to be published on blogs and websites.
Home business. The ideas and potential for a home business are limitless. There are folks who run creative memories stores, operate a video business, or sound studio from their home. One of the great benefits about running a home business is that it greatly reduces your initial investment.
Sell a product. A friend recently designed a children’s game and is in the process of producing and marketing it. It’s a lot of work, but they are passionate about the work, and the potential payoff is huge.
Generating income (along with minimizing expenses) is the foundation of smarter money management. While earning extra income does take work, its payoff can be huge.
Here are some other ways to make money:
- Getting a second job
- Selling items on eBay
- Having a Garage Sale
- Pet sitting/walking
- House sitting
- Building niche websites
- Affiliate marketing
- Create an authority blog
- Sell your services online
- Writing articles for content farms
- Teaching a class
- Lawn care
- iphone apps
- Secret shopper programs
- Focus groups
- Grant writing
- Creating a course
- Painting houses
- Selling produce from a garden
- Handing out fliers
- Creating a physical product and selling it
- Selling sperm or eggs
- Donating plasma
- Selling items on etsy
- Making dog treats
- Giving tours
- Teaching music
- Computer setup and problem-solving
- Creating items on Cafepress
- Setting up blogs
- Resume writing
- Write an ebook
- Selling CPC advertising
- Selling CPM advertising
- Creating a private forum/membership site
- Selling premium content
- Creating a job board
- Flipping websites
How to be Successful in Your Life: The 7 Points
The formula has always been the same and the only difference between those who succeed and those who don't is the extent to which they apply it.
Lots of people want to be successful and most of them believe that success can be achieved through some kind of superstitions power (The secret?) while in fact becoming successful in life is all about sticking to five things that are listed below.
If you managed to do the following 7 points you will surely be successful in your life and the reason lots of people aren't successful is that they don't manage to stick to all of them.
The formula for (real) success
1. Success is all about the number of trials: Some people succeed from the second attempt, some people do it from the third while others have to try tens of methods before they succeed. If you want to be successful in your life then you must understand that trial and error is the only way.
2. Commitment even when there is a war going on: If you intend to commit to a task for less than your lifetime then forget about success. Success is all about committing to your tasks even if you were feeling bad, sad, not in the mood or even if there was a war going on -- don't procrastinate!
3. Flexibility: After all you don't want to try to do something the same way 10 times and fail each time. You need to be flexible enough to change the method you use if you discovered that it doesn't work
4. Going against everyone: Do you know why most people aren't successful? its not because they tried and failed but because they never tried!! friends, relatives and your society might put you down or make you believe that success is not possible. If you believed anyone then you will never be successful in your life while if you went against them all you will reach what you want.
5. Having thick skin: If you want to be successful in life then put in mind that you will be rejected, criticized and discouraged all the time. Success is all about understanding that these things are a normal part of the price you pay for success.
6. Find your purpose in life (your Gift): Find your purpose in life or the Gift you were given by God. Once you find your Gift or your purpose in life (why you were put on this planet), then, you will discover your real passion. How do you find your Gift or purpose in life? Think about what you do well. Think about what your parents, relatives, or teachers told you that you were good at when you were a child. That's your Gift!
Then, use that Gift to serve Mankind and help other people.
Help your fellow man: Join a community group, become a teacher, participate in a support group, become a community volunteer. Figure out a way to help others in need. Use your Gift to help improve the lives of others.
7.Develop a plan: People who fail to plan are people who plan to fail. Don't underestimate the importance of a good business plan or marketing plan.
Note: If you're not having much success with your business (or life), then, you're probably making one or more of the classic 7 mistakes that entrepreneurs make. Get the How to Start a Health Business book/book to learn how to start or kick-start your business or, contact our business office for a business consultation.
How to Get Started Today
If you're not sure what to do, get the How to Start a Home Business ebook and/or the How to be a Great Health Coach ebook.
If you already have a business and you want to grow your business and revenues, then, consider the Health Coaching & Business Training Program -- the online version or the online/physical kit version.
Disclaimer: This site does not provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.
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