3 (1)

Are you ready to build your DREAM TEAM for 2016? Well, Women CEO Project wants to help you out starting with the wealth of talent we have here in Houston. We are highlighting our top 10 favorites in their respective fields. We’ll be rolling out different lists from various industries over the next few days and first up,

Top 10 Social Media Creatives

  1. Gabrielle Deculus

– Founder of Business Rules for Women, Development Director at Habitat for Humanity

Gabrielle Deculus Houston Behind the Grind

http://businessrulesforwomen.com/

  1. Basya

-Artist. Creative thing. Chief harvester Pinkcilantro

Basya Houston Behind the Grind

http://pinkcilantro.com/

  1. Madalyn Sklar

-Twitter Marketing Expert.

Madalyn Sklar Houston Behind the Grind

http://www.madalynsklar.com/

 

  1. Ashley Small

-Digital PR Strategist & President of Medley Incorporated

Ashley Small Houston Behind the Grind

http://home.medley-inc.com/

 

  1. Kami Huyse

-Speaker. Founder and CEO of ZoeticaMedia

Kami Huyse

http://www.zoeticamedia.com/

  1. Aimee Woodall

-President and Founder of The Black Sheep Agency

Aimee Woodall Houston Behind the Grind

http://theblacksheepagency.com/

  1. Portia Chandler

-Founder of Creative Marketing Agency Portia Chandler

Portia Chandler

http://portiachandler.com/

 

  1. Fayza

-Writer. Speaker. Digital Strategist.

Fayza Houston Behind the Grind

https://about.me/fayza

  1. Deun Ivory

-Photographer. Art Teacher. Illustrator. Writer.

Deun Ivory Houston Behind the Grind

http://www.deunivory.me/

  1. Unique James

-Producer. Photographer. Founder of the full service production company, Compozition.

Unique James Houston Behind the Grind

http://www.compozition.org/

 

*The list is not in any particular order of importance. Each person was found based on a search through various social media platforms. Think we missed someone? We’d love to hear from you! Don’t hesitate to let us know. The more the merrier!

26 Lessons 2
 
  1. Make an unbreakable commitment to yourself in one area of your life.
  2. Quit the self doubt and the negative talk. We often kill our own opportunities before our enemies can. 
  3. Think long-term. Thinking short-term doesn’t allow you to create a legacy or an impact. 
  4. Determine, what you want your legacy to be? Then create a life that achieves that.
  5. Make your MUST list. Who you MUST meet, MUST collaborate with, MUST write/speak for. Hold yourself to that MUST.
  6. Become disciplined about your money, no matter how big or small it is. 
  7. Learn to say no. You are the guardian of your time, your energy, and your life.
  8. Stop blaming others for your position in life. Once you take control of your life, you have the power to change it.
  9. Make peace with any mistakes you made in 2013, so they don’t screw up your 2014.
  10. Set a solid goal, with a deadline and milestones, then make a plan to incrementally reach it. 
  11. Get something to hold you accountable to said goal, either a business coach, an accountability partner or a mastermind team
  12. Put a time limit on worry, crying, or tantrums. Have them if you need to, but make a promise to yourself, to stop at some point and start planning.
  13. Proximity to success and being in the conversation of success are important, but only ACTION and EXECUTION can get you to success.
  14. Understand that you will fail sometimes, but your failures come with much more powerful lessons than never trying. 
  15. In business, in life and in love, you teach others how to treat you. Start by treating yourself well. 
  16. Allow yourself time to think and respect your ideas. We dismiss million dollar ideas daily because we’re too busy to think them through.
  17. Make a commitment to keep learning, growing, and educating yourself. Learning doesn’t stop when you graduate. 
  18. If you do not ask, the answer will always be no.
  19. Don’t compare yourself to others. Your path had different stones. You and your story are unique.
  20. Put a limit on research. When that time is up, commit to ACTION!
  21. You will get inspiration. You will get advice, but stop looking for the answers to be laid out for you in a 1 ,2, 3 pattern. Learn to be inspired, then channel that inspiration into your goals.
  22. When you feel yourself getting scared to make a move, ask yourself, ” If this fails, what’s the worst that could happen ?” 
  23. When you’re trying to reach your level best, before you turn in a project ask yourself,” Is this my absolute best ?”
  24. When confronted with an obstacle, ask yourself, ” What’s the best way that I can do this?”
  25. Take advantage of all opportunities granted to you but get accustomed to, proficient even, at creating your OWN Opportunities
  26. If you’re gonna go for it, go for the whale, GO BIG. You DO NOT serve the world by playing small ball. 
hello from (1)

Creating your own products, services, programs and events, is one of the Most POWERFUL things you can do for your business and an area that I specialize in teaching entrepreneurs to do. We’ve built an entire Video Series that’s FREE to get you started and a Content Packed 6 module ecourse for those who are ready to start building. For those of you who think you have absolutely nothing to create, take a look at this HUGE, comprehensive list of things that you can start building NOW! 

  1. Create a checklist of the most important to do’s in your industry. For example, the 10 ways to do xxx, what 10 things to do before xxx, the top 10 best tools for xxx. Get this checklist designed on www.fiverr.com and post it on all of your social media channels.

  2. Create an ebook that you give away to new subscribers to your blog. This ebook can follow the same top things, best practices, etc. etc just as your checklist. This gives your audience a taste of you and the quality of work that you provide.

  3. Create content filled blog posts on a regular basis. I suggest at least once per week. Make sure these posts are optimized by using the best keywords in your industry. 

  4. Take the same blog post and submit it to these TOP 50 article submission directories.

  5. Determine the 3 best subjects or topics that would totally help someone who was looking for information in your industry or niche. Then create a blog series around those topics. Release each blog post once per week.

  6. Take said blog post and make a teaser video for each topic and share it on YouTube and Vimeo. Add text to the description of each video totally describing exactly what is in the video and a link to the post on your blog. Make sure not the leave the text section of your video blank. 

  7. Take said blog posts and create an audio file around the topic. You can share this audio file on all of your social media platforms. I’d use a service like Audioboo to record and share these files for free. You’d be amazed at how many people prefer to get their information through audio rather than text or video. 

  8. While you are running this series, end it with a virtual chat discussing these topics even further and also allowing your current and potential audience to ask you questions about the subject. You can run your virtual chat for free using one of these 6 resources:

    1. UberConference

    2. www.freeconferencing.com

    3. www.nocostconference.com

    4. http://freeconferencecenter.com/

    5. http://www.rondee.com/

    6. http://www.freeconference.com/

  9. Create a podcast. This is one of the BEST ways to promote yourself, your knowledge, your skills and your services to a global audience. Here is an awesome example of a podcast.

  10. Create your own quotes. Take photos for free from here or get an entire list of tools here. Then add your own quotes, business info or website somewhere on the photo using Picmonkey. GREAT branding. Totally free.

  11. Create a white paper on your industry or subject that goes deeper into a particular topic. White papers are EXCELLENT tools to get consulting clients or share your knowledge in an industry where a high degree of know how is needed. Here is a content-filled eguide on where to get tools to help you create that white paper, then how to leverage it to make money.

  12. Create a really good reference piece, something that people would expect to pay for and give it away for free. Really detailed reference pieces get kept and if they are really good-shared. This is a good way to make your one checklist, or blog post be more viral.

  13. Create a common mistakes in your industry checklist, post or guide. Remember, avoiding mistakes is just as important as need to do’s.

  14. Create posts around your conference takeaways. If the conference was great, had an impact on you-share with your audience why, what they missed and what you learned. This could be your conference or someone else’s conference. But make sure to include a few “Conference Roundup” posts.

  15. While you are creating all of this awesome content, make sure you have a very interesting title to go along with it. Use this site to come up with the BEST titles for your blog posts and products.

  16. Speak. Then take those slides from your speaking engagement and turn each slide into an independent article. Or consider making the entire presentation another “series” and go deeper into each slide as a post.

  17. Create a Google Hangout. Record it. Then share it in your resource section of your blog. This does a couple of things. Gives you more content, and allows you to share your knowledge or your invited guest’s knowledge live during the Google Hangout. Don’t know how to incorporate hangouts? Check here.

  18. Pick 5 powerful people in your industry and do a Google Hangout “forum” monthly where you discuss a specific topic. This again, does a few things for you. It shows you as a knowledgeable person, an industry specialist, and gives you content. You can also record these sessions and add them to your blog. This is TRULY a powerful thing to do if you start it and keep it up. (keep it up)

  19. Create a private VIP session monthly also on Google Hangouts for your TOP 10 followers or clients each month. During this session, give exclusive information, share special guests with them or giveaways. This will help you grow a loyal fanbase.

  20. Create a course that you teach also on Google Hangouts. You can charge for this course, you can host it for free. Students can ask you questions live and you can add this content to your blog or keep it as exclusive material that you sell.

  21. Create a monthly Twitter chat that you invite guests in your industry to. Then save this Twitter transcripts and share them on your blog or just to the participants of the chat. Try this site to get the Twitter transcripts for free.

  22. Create a multi-level, multi-platform strategic marketing plan. So you can reach your potential client where they are with the information that they need. No worries, all of the information you need to build this is here.

  23. Create content around EXACTLY the type of information your audience is looking for and needs. How to find out what they want? ASK THEM! Use sites like Polldaddy or Survey Monkey to create free, digital surveys to find out what your audience wants.

  24. You can also create a survey from your Twitter followers. Use a site like this one to do a quick polling of your audience and get an even faster response.

  25. Create your own press releases and share them on your blog or using a one of these 20 Press Release Sites.

  26. Make sure that if you write a press release that you are creating something special to write about. Sooo get to creating an a product or event-digital or live that is unique and worth sharing. Don’t know what to create or how to get the process started? Begin here.

  27. Create your own forum on your blog or website. This is one of the richest sources of insider information on your industry or niche. Create the forum, get the topics started, market the forum using your marketing strategy plan you’ve created and just monitor and keep your eyes on the valuable information that comes through. Use sites like this one to create and integrate a free forum into your blog.

  28. Create a very detailed, colorful and useful infographic. These get passed around like crazy on sites like Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and Instagram. And always link the infographic back to your website. Use sites like this one to create an infographic for free.

  29. Consider curating content around a topic or niche. Meaning, gather 10-15 people’s opinion, advice or stories around a specific topic, and use it to create an ebook, a blog post series, a white paper or video series.

  30. Curated content can also be an event, again live or virtual. This can give you either a well rounded event on different subjects, or a high-level, content-filled event around one subject. Either way, you won’t have to do all of the work but can be the owner of the content. One of our most successful events for Women CEO Project is a curated or as I like to call it “ crowdsourced” event. Check it out here.

  31. You can also curate other’s content like, the TOP Youtube videos in your industry. The top blog posts in accounting. The top conferences for someone who wants to be in PR. The top books to read for someone who wants to get into fashion design. Curate content that is already created and add your opinion and expertise on them.

  32. Create a consulting package around services that you are well-versed in. Don’t make it confusing. Don’t offer too much. Don’t try to be everything to everyone. I suggest making 3 packages, make it easy for people to pay you and share this consulting package on your website. Here’s an example of a simple but highly EFFECTIVE consulting package and here’s a post on how to use it.

  33. After you’ve created that consulting package, set up consulting hours, and create a complete profile on sites like these:

    1. Live Ninja

    2. Noomii

  34. To help with the content creation part of your business, get familiar with sites like

    1. Copyblogger

    2. CMO

    3. Content Marketing Institute

  35. Don’t recreate the wheel. Join a course that is built to take you by the hand, walk you step-by-step and get those awesome projects and ideas out of your head, onto paper, attach a deadline, and LAUNCHED! Try a course like this one.

  36. Create products, services and content around the questions that your audience already asks you on a regular basis. Check your emails for the last 6 months. What are you regularly asked about? This is a host subject for your audience and content they are dying to have.

  37. Is your crap boring? Try creating unique content. I mean, anyone who spends at least 15 minutes on Google a day will have seen the basics in your industry and if you are just spitting the same stuff as everyone else, no one is going to click or read further on your blog, buy your products or call to hire you. What would set you apart from the noise that’s already out there? Now before you copy someone else, listen to this, and make sure to keep a running note in your phone of potential topics, posts, and titles to refer back to.

  38. Get visual. For someone like me with the attention span of a gnat-text will just bore me. As much time as I spend on the net, I’m definite on what draws me in and it’s unique visuals. Statistically, folks are drawn to pictures over text and video over text, so start getting more visual. I mean, Instagram is growing like weeds for a reason. Keep this in mind as far as attention getters and in this order:

    1. video

    2. picture

    3. audio

    4. text

  39. While you’re getting more visual, try livestreaming a process instead of just explaining one in text. Don’t drop a recipe, record or livestream yourself cooking. Don’t explain how to organize a closet, livestream or record yourself organizing one. This is MUCH more powerful than text and will draw eyes.

  40. Part the damn sea. This biennial, cardboard, groupthink, what he said opinion is absolutely useless. Why are you repeating what everyone else said? I’m not saying to be contrary just for contrary sake. But don’t you have an original opinion? One of my articles that got the most eyes, views…. started with this “ Why Facebook Sucks” and then I explained why.  If you are studying and searching and reading and basically inhaling your niche’s content daily, haven’t you formed your own theory on how things should work or best practices? Yes, ok, then pick a side. Red or green pill. Part the damn sea.

  41. Create content filled with interviews. Truly, sometimes, we don’t know what to say or our idea generator is temporarily broken. That is the perfect time to find someone with fresh ideas they are ready to infuse into our blog our podcast, our video and our audience.

  42. Create a study. Is there a particular subject that you want to be considered an expert in? Then create a study around it then use that strategic marketing plan that you made and market the hell out of it. Make sure to use Google’s keyword tool to make sure your study is optimized for the words you want it to be found for and this is the place to go deep, to give details, to give your perspective, then to ask for the business ( consulting or to buy a package/book). A study is very similar to a white paper and I truly think you can do one or the other.

  43. Create a series of reviews on products, books or topics in your industry or niche. I would create these reviews either through blog posts or through video. I love video reviews and I can’t lie. Really compelling reviews really do get my attention and make the producer of the video a semi authority in my mind.

  44. Create a post around your biggest failure and what you learned from it. This can also be the basis of a product. In our signature 6 module ecourse, The Creator’s Blueprint, we give you the pros and the cons, the pitfalls and the workarounds ALL from mistakes that I’ve personally made and learned from. This can create a basis of trust with your audience and also let them know that you do really know the other side of the coin.

  45. Create a blog post, or series, or video series totally around your why. Sometimes, for some people, this resonates with them so strongly, that they become an evangelists for your business and for you. Sometimes, when people truly understand your why, and feel that you are not only out to score a buck but to reach some optimal goal in life while also doing good, they become more attached. And what’s better than an attached fan. Nothing shah. Nothing is better. Click here to read my why, but gather your tissues first…..

  46. Create some damn momentum. Who do you expect to do it for you? People get excited with excited people. Be the most optimistic, happy, passionate person you’ve met and make sure you exude this passion when you meet folks. When I meet entrepreneurs and they don’t sound excited about their business. I’m like, why the hell should I want to talk to you. I don’t need permission to brag. But hell, I’ve done some thangs and got some more thangs to do, I’m making waves, moving to my own rythym and creating my dreams. You want to join or wave? There is a difference between meeting someone who is truly passionate about their calling and someone who just showed up. I’m creating my own wind and so should you.

  47. Google Trends Shah! Create content around what’s already hot. I mean, you think it’s harder to create a wave or easier to ride a wave? If something is already hot AND you know a lot along with having an opinion about it- then ride that wave and click here to find out the Google Trends to get started.

  48. While you’re searching for hot content, go to www.search.twitter.com and find out what’s hot, what’s trending, and what people are talking about. You will be able to add hot hashtags to your posts if it relates or create posts that relate-again, if you have some relevant info that ADDS to the conversation. The search function on Twitter is supposedly so strong, that it is giving Google a run for it’s money in the search area. Remember, Twitter is happening RIGHT NOW!

  49. Read. ALL THE TIME. I have found that reading, often, I mean like a few hours a day, has been the BIGGEST source of content for me. You CEOs know, I post A LOT of content, and it’s usually long and PACKED with info, resources and tools. This is because I am always with a book and an ipad in my purse and am so absolutely interested in progression in life. Read. Study up. Ain’t nothing worse than an expert who ain’t up to date.

  50. Create content around your client pain points. Speak their language. Talk to their hurts. Talk to their pains. Some of the best ways to find out their pains is to

    1. survey them using those digital survey sites mentioned above

    2. keep a close eye on those forums, ones you join and those that you start. People reveal A LOT of information in forums and ask for advice from members

  51. Create a weekly or daily list of news or roundup in your industry or niche. You will began to be known for this information and be seen as a source. Barbara Corcoran started the “ Corcoran Report” when you had only sold a few homes so far in New York City. To read more on Barbara Corcoran, go here.

  52. Create a daily tip from your industry that you share via your social media platforms and especially Facebook and Twitter. And if you really want them to spread, get this tip designed by a designer on Fiverr. Most times, they will design a few quotes per $5.

 

create 2

 

WHEW! Long list eh? The point here is to get the ideas flowing and for you to understand that they are endless ways and combinations for creation and creating is one of the most powerful things you can do to promote, catapult and brand yourself and your business. So let’s get busy!

 

business_coaching

(brace yourself, this is a long one)

 

I remember at the beginning of my real estate career when I said, I’ll sell a house. Any house. I was hungry, I had bills to pay and was ready to burn my tires all over the city to get to it. And that’s just what happened.  I sold many different types of houses. Some over 75 miles aways in Beaumont Texas, some that were foreclosures and in neighborhoods ridden with crime, and some that were with trouble clients who didn’t know what they wanted or wanted more than they could afford. My “business” was a mess. 

For me, it seems the word “entrepreneur” is synonymous with uncertainly. I’ve experienced my share of ups and downs and have clear lessons of when my decisions, lack of decision, or missing confidence, has directly impacted my income.

I’ve been in every type of financial situation possible, especially while starting and growing my real estate practice in Houston, Texas.

Some weeks, after 2 months of no deals, I’d have a closing and feel like I was rich. But after the short celebration, I realized that I was 2 months in the hole and once I paid all of my current and back bills….. sometimes I was only about $500 up…. the hustle continues.

All this time, I am totally ignoring the top agents in my office who “specialized” in a real estate niche and also those who had some type of coach. I truly believed that specializing or in my mind-cutting off business, was the absolute dumbest idea in the world. I was a jane of all trades in real estate. Sometimes I sold condos, sometimes really cheap condos, or houses in no specific area, which had me traveling, and driving all over the city at all times of the night. Because I didn’t do one particular type of house, or one particular neighborhood, I never seemed to be up on the latest news, the new shopping center that is to be built, or how to really loop in the buyers who would seek out certain neighborhoods.

I always seemed to be playing catch up trying to grab the straggler buyers and I was NEVER ahead on the trends or even in control of any part of my business. 

The only thing I really had going for me, was that I was in it fulltime. I was a fulltime realtor, and the money I made was all I had to pay my bills and at one time, grad school. Me having my back against the wall made me hustle. Sometimes hustling backwards, but I did hustle. So while hustling, I was always seeking education and trainings.

I happened upon a training where a lady, Monique, spoke and gave us tons of advice and tips on how to run our business efficiently. She was also offering “Real Estate Career Consulting”.

What I had before me, was a stalled career, some free advice, but an offer for some specific “paid” advice. I had read all the suggested books for our industry, exhausted all of the free courses offered, and had taken ALL of the real estate classes available in the best real estate school in Houston, ( yep, I’ve taken EVERY single real estate course in Champions School of Real Estate in Houston) soooo, obviously, I needed to do something new.

I went home, gathered one of my printers ( I mean, why did I even have 2?) and a brown and gold Gucci bag…. and hit Craigslist. SOLD. Before I could even find another bill for the money I’d just made, I went to Monique’s office and plopped down every dollar.

We had our first consulting session 2 days later. Monique is a tall, slim, very pretty, white lady, with such a light voice which surprisingly, carried a foul tongue…. She cut me not an ounce of slack, but I loved it.

The first thing she had me do was to specialize. I mean, like how in the hell did I expect to get to where I wanted to go without knowing exactly who I wanted it from and aiming for them directly? It made so much sense, and I was ready to make a change.

Because of our sessions, and her forcing me to clarify, I found out EXACTLY why I was getting the type of clients that I didn’t want, what my average sale was, and why I was working so dang hard but making very little money and always unorganized. I left meeting one with:

  • a clear purpose

  • a plan

  • a goal

  • and a deadline

We made specific goals, charted a plan for our next 6 months ( I only had the money to pay her for 1 session) and we hit it.

I left my session knowing:

  • how many days I needed to work a week to reach my goals

  • how many people I needed meet ( only quality networking/connecting counted)

  • then, how many of those connections needed to be turned into meetings

  • What types of functions I needed to attend, their dates, and the cost for entry and had them scheduled on my calendar

When we really broke it down, some of the deals that I was doing were paying so low in relation to how much time it took to do, that I was actually working minimum for wage after I paid my:

real estate fees( fees to the state of Texas and to Houston)

expenses including ( gas, car maintenance, yard signs, door locks, marketing software)

agent fees ( desk fee, fax, conference room rental fee, newspaper marketing fee)

etc. etc. etc.

When we really broke it down like that, I was totally shocked to say the least. I’m breaking my neck to say yes to all deals- sales where I make about 2000k and doing leases where I’m getting paid $500, have to pay my fees that I mentioned above, AND about 30% off sales and $200 from leases. I’d spend 3 weeks or approximately 30 hours of computer and car time looking for them an apartment or house….to make pennies (yep divide that $300/30)

When we really put pen to paper, I realized that after ALL of the hours spent, for some deals, I actually lost money or in essence, paid to the client to help them.

What if I had never broken it down? What if I had not hired Monique….she paid for herself in session one.

I truly felt like a veil was lifted even though Monique gave me not one single answer. Monique’s job, was to ask the right questions to pull the answers from me.

My running around the city going to several networking events a week decreased substantially. I had 25 cards in my pocket on all my workdays and knew that I needed to make those connections. No matter what, before I went home, all 25 of those cards had to be given out AND I had to have their contact information back in my pocket.

Just FYI, when we started building my real estate database, I had 11 people TOTAL. So you can start from anywhere and grow up….

I started saying no to the deals that would take me a ton of work but paid me almost minimum wage. I started saying no to deals that would take me way out of the city AND to hard to deal with clients.

I started saying no, and when I started saying no, I started making more money.

When Monique and I reviewed year 1, I had not reached my goal- I had surpassed it. Because we were connecting and meeting each month, we tracked my client calls, meetings and conversions with some easy questions and created a system of determining where my best clients came from.

Year 2’s goal was even higher and hyper focused. I was now loaded with detailed information from year 1 that would make me even more efficient.

I had a year of learning where my best client came from. Then I went to even less events and networking and Monique and I upped our meetings from once a month to twice a month- I saw her every other Monday. Yes, it cost me more, but I was FINALLY making money and didn’t even notice her bill. Year 2, I paid for the first 6 months in advance, whereas year one, I had to sell some stuff just to get to the first session. Things had changed. 

Year 2, you guessed it. I killed that goal.  I was soooooo excited and felt powerful and strong and focused, but also, a little scared.

I had reached as far as my mind had allowed me to think I had deserved. I had reached what I thought was the top in my career. Honestly, I had never expected to reach that point and had not thought of anything higher. Amazingly, reaching success, what was planned, carefully thought through success, was scaring me.

But Monique pushed. Kristi, what’s next? My true answer, “ Well, shit Monique, I guess I’m going to aim for 500,000 dollar homes and above and get my broker’s license. I read about this lady in New York who did it, and was uber successful when there were mostly men in the business ( yep, I was talking about this Barbara Corcoran lady)”. Honestly though, I answered her ask if I were asking a question. I didn’t sound strong, and I think I was leaving the door open for her to say, “ Kristi, that’s too high, stay realistic”.

She said nothing of the sort. Monique and I begin to chart the course of me narrowing and breaking down my niche to the peach meat, and I added something new…. I started teaching, speaking, and hosting events and no longer did I do simple networking, I was now schmoozing.

I really begin to go to the places where 500k buyers hung out, and Monique helped me to identify:

  • the best organizations to join,

  • types of events to create and host

  • best practices on how to convert my meetings to actual clients

  • how to load my pitches so that I’d for sure get a yes. ( I still do that to this day, I create my proposals in a way that makes them REALLY powerful and I have a very high rate of getting a yes.

Hiring a coach was a leap. When I did it, I was broke, and didn’t really know if it would work, or if I could afford her, but, what I did know, is that what I had been doing previously wasn’t working. At least not successfully. I did have all of the raw talent on my own, but my first coach, she

was kind, but was UBER strict

absolutely made me be specific

stayed on my ass consistently in a tough love way

got me on the path to making more money than I grew up thinking was possible for me

Monique was the launching pad, and I am now a true believer in coaches. Not quite a year after starting Women CEO Project in 2010, I hired my next coach who was soooooo instrumental in bringing this women’s business something into a very doable, global mission. She really did see my vision and helped me with some remaining hangups I had.

But as with anything else, you go up and you grow up and I’ve now gotten my 3rd coach.  Her bill shah…….let’s just say, I am no longer only thinking of success, I am fully expecting to yield some high results and surpass my goals once again.

What I want to share with you is that, it’s no secret that Kobe, Michael Jordan, or Gabrielle Douglas had raw talent. You can’t give someone that kind talent. But you can teach them skills. You can refine their jump. You can reduce their steps. You can show them a focused path. You can definitely teach them what you’ve learned. What these super talents had in common- that they all had coaches who where there to help remove the trees, to clean up the clutter and help them focus what they already had. 

That is what my first 2 coaches have done for me and I have no doubt my current coach won’t help take me even higher.

You may feel you cannot afford it, but at this point in your business, can you afford not to?

When I see the look in my client’s eyes, I almost want to dance. To see them have clarity and fully knowing how wonderful it feels to have such clarity, every time I see it, I am satisfied.

CEOs, take a look at your business. Take a look at where you want to go. Listen closely to see whose voice, whose message and whose skills speak to you and reach out to them. Figure out a way to get started and just do it. If my voice speaks to you, reach out to me here and we’ll see if my talent and your needs are a match. But even if it’s not me, and you’ve been at this for a while, make a decision to get someone in your corner through a mastermind group, a consultant, or a coach.

Just make a decision and learn how to focus your jumpshot….

 

Women CEO Project Podcast

Are You Giving Your Business the Shaft? 

When your business gets the last drop of your disposable income, after your normal activities, daily splurges, shoe habit, margarita friday’s and ….. when your business gets the last drops of oil, why do we expect it to be uber successful?

There is much truth in the sayings, the things that get your money and your mind are the things you give value to and to see your business grow, you have to invest some time AND some money into it.

 In this Podcast, you will learn:

  • How to Give your Business the RESPECT is Deserves
  • Then How to Find the Funds You Need to Grow Your Business!
  • And TONS of links, tools, and additional resources

Podcast Show Notes:

Extra!

 

 

23 Ways the Rich Stay Rich

 

(this list is entirely from my humble opinion of working with self-made millionaires)

 

Over the last few years of my real estate brokerage and now, consulting clients and individual businesses, I’ve started to regularly work with rich and even very wealthy people. I’ve been watching, picking up tips, and even asking questions of the ones that I become very close to. In the last 3 years, I’ve learned a lot of the thought processes, the attention to detail, the risk levels, and the mindsets of those who truly chart their own courses in our world. And as I learned many things from these interesting individuals, and am trying to make changes in my own life, I have started to notice some definite trends and common practices among them…… here they are. The rich, they

 

  1. Start businesses. As soon as possible, the rich stop trading their time for money and rather find ways and businesses where they can hire people who do it for them. Not one of my clients has a job and is instead a multiple business owner. Owning your own business put you in a position of power, and keeps your time spent building assets not income.

  2. Learn how to negotiate. ALL of them knew how to negotiate like a pro. This is not a task to be left up to someone else. Saving money and getting the best deal is ultimately THEIR job.  

  3. Know exactly how much they made last month and have a specific goal for this month. They have a specific goal that they are aiming for and don’t mind making incremental steps to reach it. Of one of my clients this past weekend, he’s already a millionaire many, many times over (he’s also hired me to do some strategic marketing work in his company), I wondered, what’s next for this man. So I asked, “Sir, if you don’t mind, I’d love to know what the ultimate goal for you is”. Without ANY hesitation, he said, “I want to be the biggest employer in my country. Currently, it’s xxxxx and once I finish this project we’re working on, I’ll be at least ½ of him, so I know exactly how much further I have to go.  Plus, this person in power, he is 20 years my senior, so I know I can beat him”. How’s that for a specific goal eh?

  4. Are competitive and play to win, whereas the poor are constantly trying to preserve what we have. Some of us totally shy away at competing, and to me, this means that we really should not attempt starting a business if we want to avoid ALL risks. There are those chances where you can create something that has absolutely no competition at all, but that’s a scary place to be and it’s pretty rare. I mean, even when Apple’s ipad came out, it wasn’t alone for long and they had to constantly innovate to make sure they stayed on top. Compete or stay poor.

  5. Risk failure for even a glimpse of greatness.  I spoke with a very special lady last night, who is 20, and says that she knows she will be in business one day. The only thing is, that she wanted it to be perfect if she put her name stamp on it, that she could not risk failure and how did I do it. I told her, you cannot have GREAT opportunity without opening yourself to failure, just as you cannot experience a GREAT love without opening your heart to possible heartbreak.  The rich know that the greatest wealth sometimes sleeps in risky places and they don’t mind taking calculated steps to get it.

  6. Know exactly what’s in their account, what their credit score is, what they are worth at the bank, and simple accounting practices. This one amazed me a bit-the accounting practices that is. I met and was mentored by a serial entrepreneur and retired multi-millionaire in 2011, and he told me this, “Kristi, take a basic accounting course and learn what profit/loss, projections, EBITDA, etc. is. You are responsible for your money and what’s going in and out”. I have noticed that all of my wealthy clients have slightly above the average knowledge in accounting and ALWAYS know what’s going on with the money they do have.

  7. Diversify their assets and have money coming in from multiple streams. CEOs, there’s something to this creating streams of income thing. Most of the clients I’m speaking of on the real estate side, are in Oil and Gas, BUT, they all own real estate investments ( with me) have stock in various companies, none of them have 1 business ( they have a structure in place to run the others) have invested in other companies, and are constantly looking for and creating opportunities to grow their portfolios.

  8. Don’t waste a lot of time in agenda-less meetings. Watching my clients do this has  DIRECTLY impacted the way I have my meetings now. In the last few years, my meetings have reduced by more than ½. BUT, I’ve become much, much, more profitable. Before, even a whiff of new business got me out of the door, and burning my tires to go and grab a piece of something that I had not vetted for it’s legitimacy, had me talking to people who just wanted a date while I was desperately seeking a deal, or wasting countless hours meeting with people just because they might want to do business in the next year, or so, or…… Rich folks, they don’t do this. If a meeting happens, it’s pretty high-level and is done to lead to a contract. The deals don’t always happen, but a meeting NEVER happens unless the parties are serious and vetted. If you implemented this one thing here, how much time would you save…..

  9. Spend money to make money. What really surprised me and embarrassed me at the same time, was one of my first meetings with a pretty wealthy lady, and I was decked in my designer gear, thought I looked great, and she-she was much more modest, and didn’t wear designer names on her sleeves. Ohhhh but she looked great at the bank. I was wearing my lil change on my body, and she was making money with hers. Now, I’ve never been a total slave to designers, but I’ve definitely slacked off on my purchases and REALLY understanding that the rich, they use their money to build assets, to start businesses, to invest in other businesses, to buy real estate, to build apartment complexes, to etc. etc. The rich don’t wear their money AS much as the poor and middle class do. When they do make a purchase, trust, whereas we scraped together our coins to buy that Gucci bag, they could probably 2000 of them before they’d even buy one.

  10. Buy assets that increase in value, not decrease as soon as it’s bought. The rich make it a habit of buying real estate, art, jewelry ( increasing value jewelry) and land. They learn the difference between what is truly an asset and what is a liability.

    1. An asset puts money in your wallet.

    2. A liability takes money out of your wallet.

  11. Plan for a rainy day. No matter how wealthy they were, many of them told me that they always put aside money from every single deal for times when they may not make money or occasions when they may lose money. You never know what could happen, and they want to at least attempt to prepare for worst case scenarios.

  12. Have a budget. One of my recent clients and I are working on an expensive real estate investment for them. The husband makes the money, but the wife “manages” the money. Now, we’re talking about a few million here ( my biggest real estate sale), but when it comes to negotiations, the wife is concerned about $53,000. I was a little shocked-it seemed like pennies in the big scheme of things….But her negotiation skills taught me a bit, she said to me, “ Kristi, I have a budget. Period. It doesn’t matter what I actually have in the bank. For this investment, I have a budget, and we will stay within it”. Yesssss maam! Lesson learned.

  13. Do not pay full price for most things. Surprised eh? ALL of the clients that inspired this post, NONE of them avoid trying to get a bargain. Sometimes they win, sometimes they don’t, but they always attempt to get a deal and save as much money as possible.

  14. Become savvy about investing and don’t rely solely on their advisor. You MUST be in charge of your finances in order to grow them and you must have a certain level of knowledge yourself to keep that bank account growing. The wealthy are always open to learning more about money whereas the poor feel like we already know enough.

  15. Don’t make a ton of impulse buys. They take the time to research their purchases-especially the large ones, to make sure they are getting the best deal, are familiar with all of the benefits and truly need the item. I’ve watched this countless times.

  16. Are focused on mastering sales and marketing. They don’t shy away from these 2 skills thinking someone else in their company can do it or should do it. They become masters at selling- I mean, who’s the best spokesperson for your business, product, service or yourself? They also are quite comfortable at marketing, are open to new techniques and marketing trends AND they watch what’s working so that they can implement it into their lives and businesses more often.

  17. Find ways to leverage their money, while the poor find more jobs and ways to work for their money. Again, wealthy people are always looking for ways to make their money grow, instead of ways to work for a salary or be paid by the hour.

  18. They create their own opportunities. The rich don’t sit and wait for someone to give them an opportunity, for a window to open, for someone to call, for permission. All of my clients are very confident and have taken risks to build pathways when the road seemed to be at a dead end.

  19. Don’t sit on their ideas and instead find ways to capitalize and make money off of them. They also don’t take years to launch an idea. I remember one of my first wealthy clients in 2005- I learned sooooo much from this guy, but the kicker is, we were the same age, which intrigued me, while also making me feel some kind of way. He made MOVES and he didn’t ponder them forever. He didn’t wait for the “go” committee to give him permission, he didn’t wait for his friends, family and peers to get on board. He had an idea, he gave it it’s due diligence, then he went with it.  He has one of the most charismatic personalities and bullet proof confidence that I’d ever seen and I’ve personally seen him launch 2 million dollar enterprises since 2005.

  20. Are active learners but don’t sit on knowledge. They don’t spend hours reading books, or attending seminars NOT to use it. It has a reason and is directly proportional to a goal they are trying to reach and they fully intend to use the information actively.

  21. Are not victims. They feel they are responsible and have the power to create a certain lifestyle for themselves, whereas the poor feel like everything happens to them, and that they have no control. The rich, understand that you are not given control, you take it.

  22. Focus on opportunities, while the poor focus on the obstacles. Wealthy people make less excuses or complain about obstacles currently in their way. I have witnessed this first hand in times of emergency- they IMMEDIATELY get into problem solving mode. The rich move right along with their goals and plans and face obstacles when they occur. They don’t waste time focusing on calamities in the sky that may or may not ever happen.

  23. Dream BIG. They don’t walk around life asking for what they think they deserve-small rations or crumbs. They stake their claim, not matter who is offended, who doesn’t believe in them and they chart a path to reach it.  They want it all and they want the BEST. From day one, many of them think of themselves as millionaires even if they have not one dollar yet. They also do not hang around with folks who have a poor mindset. One of the wealthiest told me, when he first said that he wanted to be rich, his friends laughed and reminded him that he came from the dirt, that he did not have the proper education or connections. He removed himself from them. They could not see his vision that he had for himself, nor did they have a vision for themselves. They were poor in mind and if he was to ever reach even the edges of his dreams, he’d have to travel light. Now, some of those same friends work for him……DREAM BIG!

 

I’ve learned a lot in the last few years from my clients from Jackson Realty and Investments AND from Women CEO Project, and I hope that in compiling this list for myself, that it has helped you. For most of these clients, we developed a good friendship and they fully allowed me to ask as many questions about life and business as I wanted. I remember one saying to me, “ Kristi, you’re so inquisitive. But I know that you ask so that you can learn and that you never mean harm, so I’ll tell you anything, if you promise to use it”. Powerful stuff. I’m very appreciative of the real world lessons, the authenticity and openness I’ve been shown.


Soooo after reading what the rich folks do, I’m sure you’re wondering about the rest of us blokes…what should we be working on to get to that level. Well, since I’m in the growing phase, I can tell you, that I have not gotten to that level, but I am definitely headed there, first, by claiming it, second by knowing that I deserve it, next, by learning where I make mistakes ( shopping ) and instead, making better decisions that will ultimately lead to my goals. Ohhh, and I have a really specific goal. I do have PLENTY of opinions on how we can head in the other direction, and I’ve listed them all, for another post, but for today, I’ll let your brain rest, while you ruminate on the lifestyles and decisions of the wealthy.

Got an opinion or advice on how the rich stay rich? Drop it here in the comments. We’re ALL learning……

growth

 

Part 1 ( #1-12) 

    1. First, take inventory of what you DO have. Most of us don’t realize that we already have some powerful connections at our fingertips. We haven’t really worked on building a lasting and powerful relationship with the people already in our sphere. Over 3000 people viewed and attended our Women of Power Virtual Summit Conference in June, but only 3 ladies that I know of, reached out to some of the speakers to connect further…. After a conference is an opportunity for you to make a warm connection because you’ve already met and most conferences have a manual or agenda like ours here, where you can learn more about the speaker and how to reach them.  

     

    You’re already made a ton of connections on social media platforms like Linkedin ( the most professional one) Facebook and Twitter. There are probably at least 10-20 people between all of your platforms that you could reach out to and start to build a strong business relationship with. Get out a piece of paper and start making your list, then just reach out and say hello, but don’t send them the simple Linkedin friend request. Send them this script instead:

     Script 1

    Hello, I’m Kristi Jackson. I’ve read your profile and like what you’re doing. I’d would love to offer to introduce you with anyone of my connections should you want to reach out and start building a relationship. I look forward to connecting with you and connecting the best professionals I know to you…. It would be my pleasure……I’m known as the elbow of many deals. Have a wonderful and progressive week.

    That’s better than the stale, “ I’d like to add you to my professional network” text that Linkedin automatically inputs in your emails. Everyone knows this isn’t personal and no one takes it seriously.

     

    Script 2

    Here’s a Twitter script that I’ve been using for over 2 years that has gotten me connected to some of the TOP businesses and entrepreneurs in the world ( for example, Priceline owner and American Express)

    Hello, can you please DM me so that I can send you a private email about speaking ( you can interchange speaking with, sponsoring, interviewing, etc) This very simple script gets me followed ( they have to follow me to Direct Message me, then we can connect privately)

    When trying to determine what you already have, take a look at these things: 

      1. Social Media ( Linkedin, Facebook and Twitter)

      2. In-Person Networking ( business cards that you have at home)

      3. People that you already know

      4. Speakers you’ve heard at events ( eg. speakers from Women of Power Virtual Summit)

  1. Use Google Analytics to know and understand what social media platform your website/blog referrers come from, then make a plan to spend a good portion of your marketing time here.  Facebook is a HUGE referrer for us, it is usually our number 1, 2 and 3 referral sources. So this lets us know that we must continue our marketing on Facebook and keep our page fresh. You don’t need to be on ALL of the social media platforms. You only need to be on the ones that your clients are hanging out on and that they use to make decisions on buying your product or service. If you are new to implementing Google Business tools in your company, you are in for a treat. The suite of tools are freaking awesome and here’s a post on some of the top ones I use in my business that are free.

  2. Don’t ignore the low hanging fruit. Your best sales will come from people who are already in your audience AND this is the audience that already knows you. So make sure to keep up with and stay in contact with your best clients and evangelists even after the sale. These are the people who will refer you, who will promote you naturally, and will regularly buy from you. Don’t make it difficult. Just call or email 2 of them a day or 5 regular clients a week.

  3. If you can afford it, buy 10 $5 Starbucks gift cards a month and give them to people who you meet that you like and really want to connect with. But don’t give it to them when you meet them. Mail them out about a week later.  I have made SOOOO many days with lil $5 cards and people truly appreciate them. I can remember sending one to a millionaire, seriously, he’s a wealthy business owner of a mortgage company. He makes a lot of money, but he wasn’t used to people doing things for him. When he called to thank me, he told me that he didn’t remember when was the last time someone gave him a gift. I used this technique in real estate, and this particular man and I did A LOT of business together.

  4. Create loops and build complementary products off one another. Creating loops is a Kristi term but basically it means, using products, services and tools to point to other products, services and tools of yours. It’s just smart and it helps your community to understand your total business offerings. Building products that build upon and complement other products helps people take steps, move up, gather more information when they are ready and stop when they feel like they’ve gotten all that they need. It also shows that you are growing, learning more and offering that knowledge to your audience.

  5. Know who you want, then go after this person ONLY! Sounds quite simple, yet I find MANY entrepreneurs wasting time hanging out on the wrong playgrounds daily. Hustling, even spending their money and time in places that don’t hold their client. Why are you going to ONLY free events to meet clients when your product or services costs $100? Does this make sense? I’m not saying not to go to free events, but understand that your client really may not be there if your product is not free. People ALWAYS ask me how I only go to only a few events per year ( in real estate) but would sell just as many houses as they would AND at a higher price. And I’ll say it again. I only went to events that costs money and that were kind of exclusive. It’s like placing yourself at a party where if you pick any man, you’ve picked a good one because you were in a place with quality men. Same thing, you want to go to places where no matter who you meet, you have a better chance of them being able to reach even your minimum requirements. I remember hustling to get this speaking engagement to a group of engineers……It payed off. I sold 14 houses within the next 7 months to this group from 1 speaking engagement, which was more beneficial than me going to several events to speak which may or may not have my client.

  6. One of the most powerful ways you can reach who you need to reach, is knowing EXACTLY who you want, and then determining who has that audience. Get out a piece of paper and make a list of what companies, organizations, conferences, magazines, and platforms hold your particular audience. Then make a plan to reach them. Perfect question: What organization could I get in front of and meet my ideal client? After knowing this, you can easily turn down “opportunities” that don’t fit your goals, partnerships that don’t move you forward, or creating products that don’t take you to your ideal client.

  7. Learn where to spend money and where to save. Right now, and probably for a while… you DO NOT need an office or furniture, or great stationery. What you need is a computer, the internet, unlimited minutes on your phone, a blog, a domain name and a professional email address. This is the time to learn A LOT. The areas that I would spend money ( if you have it to spend) is on business education ( courses, conferences, and books) and hiring a business consultant or coach. Yes, you can do it without a coach. Of course you can, but it will take you YEARS longer. The best thing to do is to determine where you will spend your time to learn something and where you will spend your money to learn quicker. If you’re looking for and AWESOME consultant ….. click here 

  8. Create things that have reach even while you sleep. This can be called many names like, creating passive income, mailbox money, beach money, multiple streams of income, etc. But whatever you call it, start doing it. This will carry you, grow your business, come in handy, and brand you 24/7 no matter where you are- working on other projects, in meetings, traveling, sleeping, not working, whatever. We’ve built an entire course AND a free video series to help you begin to create and share your talent with the world. But the BIGGEST thing creating streams will do ( other than money) is to leverage your time and the talents of yourself and others. Think like this, creating items, products etc. can do this for you:

    1. Pay for something in your company. Most months my eGuides covered the cost for my virtual assistant and my design work… So I could get the help I needed without coming out of pocket AND I was helping tons of people with the eGuides. I was consistently branding myself since it is a digital product, it can sell and be downloaded anytime from anywhere ( after the United States, we sell the most eGuides to entrepreneurs in Australia)

    2. It creates a chain reaction. Some people first become affiliated with us through a virtual event, then we had some additional products and services for them to take part in. So their learning could be progressive…. there was more to learn and engage them further in the Women CEO Project community.

    3. There are MASSIVE benefits to creating something bigger than you that lives and carries your company’s name. Be it a magazine, a conference, a product, or a service-having items other than meeting you in person, is a great way to spread virtually, virally, and constantly.

  9. Get out of your own way and stop spending time on administrative tasks. We don’t think twice about spending $25 a week on lattes at Starbucks, but won’t spend $25 paying someone to design documents for us so that they look professional. We will happily waste hours trying to do this amateur document ourselves. Nor will we pay for a few hours of assistance so that we are not wasting our time creating documents, making spreadsheets, or designing newsletters. If this is your talent…. ok cool, but for most of us, these types of tasks are not where our talents lie. And if you’re curious about it, pull out some of your work and send it to me… I’ll tell you if it’s a talent of yours or not. More than likely, someone else should be working on these things for you. One of the best decisions I could make for myself and my business, is to hire someone to help me with things that do not move my business forward. They are important. I mean, yes, newsletters and emails need to be sent out. But momma needs to go out, have the big meetings and bring in the money. I can’t do that if I’m busy, head down into a spreadsheet, which, by the way, I am absolutely horrible at.

 

  1. Create a system or a process in your company wherever possible. You will never be able to hire someone to help you if your whole process on how you do something is in your head. That is not a business, that is bootlegging… Let’s start to get stuff in order. If you create a newsletter each week, make a small document detailing how you do it, fonts you use, time of day and day of week you send it out, pictures you include, links etc. and just save the document. So now, when you do hire someone, even part time or temporary, you can just hand them this document and keep it moving- remember, momma is focusing on bringing home the bacon and now she can do that comfortably because her assistant knows exactly what she needs and how she wants it. I have created a strategic multi-level marketing plan template, an ideal client template, a designer and freelancer checklist, among many other documents ( I’ve included many of these templates in the Creator’s Blueprint course) These documents are immensely important to my business and keep us organized no matter who is completing the task.

  2. While you’re creating, make sure that some of your products or services can be bought online without you being around. Again, you want to automate as much as possible and creating “passive” income is……passive. If you make money only when you show up to set up your shop or when you speak, you are leaving a whole other stream of clients and business out there to buy from someone else. You want people in different countries to be able to buy from you, whenever they want. You want things to be selling while you are at your speaking engagement, and to do this, you need your products and services to be online. You want the finding, vetting, buying and follow-up process to be totally automated and online. Aim for this in as many areas in your business as possible.

Ok, so I almost put ALL 22 business growth to do’s here and realized you’d probably need some time to digest the first 12. Ready for Part 2? Click here to get it!  Feedback time…..tell me Women CEO Project community, what questions do you have about business growth? Drop them in the comments below!

Women CEO Project Podcast

We all do it….. fall prey to saying yes, being a people pleaser and promptly allowing, even handing the broom to folks, and sweeping our needs and desires under the run. Why do we do this to ourselves. We can’t we say no, even when saying yes is detrimental to our own health, peace of mind, families, and businesses? 

This podcast is for ALL of the women I know who fall into the yes trap, who don’t put their needs first and who have trouble saying no to the things that don’t move themselves and their businesses forward. 

Please drop us a comment below, and tell us what you have trouble saying no to…

 

Included in this Episode:

  • Why we don’t say no when we really need to
  • How to say “ No” scripts
  • How to make your no clear and clean 
  • How to get your personal and business needs met
  • How to make “ YOU” your #1 priority
  • How to redirect request for free services or products 
  • How to respond to requests from people you love, charities and churches 

Links Mentioned:

 

Women CEO Project Podcast

In this Episode, we talk about how to give your current and future audience a lil taste of your skills, talents and maneuver through and stand out from the minutia of ALL the other media, marketing and advertising messages they get daily. 

In this episode you will learn:

  • some options of what to create for your audience
  • what to do with the DIYers or the people who don’t want to buy from you
  • how to wrap your “free” with strategy and leverage
  • how to combine different platforms to reach your audience

Websites and Tools Mentioned:

 

 

strategy

 

Strategy doesn’t require a Harvard degree, nor does it have to drain the bank. With technology in our corner, there are simple yet HIGHLY effective ways to reach who you need to, to connect deeper, to brand yourself and your business, all while not spending a dime. Read further….

  1. Determine the 10 people or businesses that you absolutely want to work with in the next 1 year. Then make a plan to build a relationship with them virtually and in person if possible.

    • Go to their blog, start making really good comments, give positive feedback, and answer questions. Don’t do this one time and think it will work, plan to do this for a few months at least.

    • Email this hopeful contact an article that you think will help or benefit them.

    • If you’re really aggressive, send a book that you think this contact would love to read to their office.

    • If you know that a contact will be speaking at a particular conference…. go if you can. Then if you plan to go, try to connect with the contact before the conference. Tweet them and let them know you will be there and would love to connect in person AND ask if they have any events they are attending pre or post conference ( I’ve gotten a VIP invite to a dinner this way)

    • Ask to interview the potential contact for an article, blog post, ebook, etc.

    • Offer to give a paid product of yours to your contact for free in exchange for advice or feedback on said product.

    • Determine how you could work for, work with, or volunteer for this contacts upcoming event or program.

  2. Join forums in your industry. This is a ninja move and a very unused one. If you go to Google and type in your niche and put forum behind it, you will find some. For example, “florist forums” “ small business attorney forums” etc. This will be one of your BEST sources of leads, business, speaking engagements and exposure if you do it right.

    • Join the forum ( most are free) 

    • DO NOT start talking about your business and what you sell for at least 2 weeks

    • Go into the forum with the longterm mentality and start giving quality answers to questions asked.

    • Don’t try to answer everything or everyone, but position yourself as an “expert” in this forum, but picking a few subjects and giving a very detailed answer to the questioner. This tactic right here, if done regularly, will get you more exposure than posting what you are selling.

    • Plan to be active consistently in the forum, so you need to pick only a few very active ones, with engaged members from the beginning that you can be in for years.

    • After you have established a relationship with the forum, THEN mention that you have a launch coming up in a month of this AWESOME product that may just help a few people in the forum and reference some of the questions that you’ve answered, for example “ Mary, Sue, Jane, Angela, by the way, the question that you had last week, my product will help you greatly with that. I will definitely let you know when it is available. Also, I am looking for 5 reviewers of my product and I will pick all 5 from this forum”…..

  3. Consider creating the holy grail of all lists, list with very useful information for your industry or niche and post it on your blog. This will keep people coming to your blog for this information AND your post will probably get picked up and shared by other bloggers. Some of our most useful posts are shared by many bloggers and gets us hits to our site- visitors who then read our other info. Here is an example of a content packed list post AND here are some places to send your article:

    • to 10 bloggers whose audience would benefit from the post

    • to many sites on this article submission directory

    • to contacts in your new forums that you are already seen as useful 🙂

    • on your social media channels

    • Also, consider creating a resource list like:

      1. top 10 questions to ask your accountant

      2. 10 places to go to exercise outside of your house

      3. the top ways to get your body ready for summer

      4. 10 things to do to prepare for your first speaking engagement

      5. 20 tools ( in your industry)  that you CANNOT live without

  4. Repurpose your content. Consider these things for already created content:

    • Break it up into bits, have it designed from someone on fiverr and post on your business Pinterest board

    • Take your speeches ( speaking engagements) and break them down into blog posts or webinars

    • Take your articles/blog posts and use each topic, bullet point or number as a social media post. Reference (link) back to the entire article

    • Taking some of the holy grail lists and turning it into a small ebook that you give away and that continuously brand you and your company as a resource
    • Use that same ebook that you just created and link back to a couple of documents that you made to accompany this ebook and that are resting on your website. For example, you’ve created an ebook on accounting, then insert a few links to worksheets or templates that you’ve created to go with it. Yes, you can add your company and social media info somewhere on the document, so even if they share it, or it spreads around ( this is what you want) your info is spread right along with it. Here is an example of one of our gifts, that also brands us the more it is shared and downloaded. Your audience will LOVE all of the content, probably find it useful ( as long as it IS useful) and people who are just visiting, will definitely consider becoming a part of your community from this. 
  1. Create a video series. This has proven to be one of the most powerful components of our strategy plan and our audience seem to love it. But the catch is……. it MUST be useful. It’s can’t just be about you. Huge mistake. Make the series so focused on content, trust me, folks will want to know who you are after they watch. Create:

    • demos ( if you have a product that can be demoed)

    • how to, step by step ( Make each step a separate video. This keeps your audience anticipating and invites questions)

    • interviews

    • product reviews
    • book reviews ( books that are relevant to your niche or industry) 
  1. Kind of like a digital business card but more powerful, consider writing a white paper, filling it with content, then adding your bio ( 1 page) and contact information at the end of the paper. White papers are really useful and strategic pieces to gain clients and especially consulting clients. And you will not only gain contacts, but more informed contacts. You will save time from answering questions of people who aren’t quite ready to work with you, then you satisfy the people who potentially want to work with you, that you know what you’re talking about. Then do this with your white paper:

    • add a link to it in your email signature

    • send it to all inquiries, so they can know a little more about me

    • send to all callers who potentially want to work with you- send them the link ( all who call as potential consulting clients or organizations who want me to speak, I send them this)

    • post it on slideshare, then link it to your Linkedin profile

    • add the paper to the resources section of your website/blog

    • I talk more about white papers and how to use them in your strategic planning here

When you are thinking about strategic planning, don’t make it hard. It doesn’t have to be hard or costly. There are many things, connections, and ways that we can leverage free, technology tools, social media, a little effort and elbow grease, and create the connections and business that we want ALL while bootstrapping. 

WHEW! That was just 6 eh? I have tons of ideas. Need an intense, project specific strategy session? Click here to see how we can work together. And drop me feedback in the comments… What strategic moves do you use that are FREE?

 

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