This week is my favorite subject to share, as I am sure you know by now I love being pampered even if I have to do it myself. In my house I am known as the king, and the saying goes, “It is good to be king”.

But enough of that, I am a true believer in taking care of you, this does not mean you have to go spend hundreds of dollars on a spa or take a long vacation. Do not get me wrong those things are important and should be done as a way to treat yourself. I recommend at least twice a year if possible.

But you can practice self-care and not break the bank. You like that? My human dad taught me that saying. You have to take time for you, you cannot work all the time and then take care of everything you need to do in your home life and not unwind. You will burn out quickly this way and in the end you will be miserable. Also both your home life and business will suffer.

Take a little time and do something for you every day, even if it is 30 minutes. You will find this will recharge you and gets you back in the groove. Be sure to set boundaries for what is YOUR time. Better yet, put on your calendar and mark the time off. In my human moms’ case, they take a coffee time after lunch during the week. They also have chosen to take a long self –care break on the weekends. They also had to set work boundaries. (Which they say have to be done) But we can talk about those later.

Not sure what you can do in such a short time to recharge, here are some suggestions:
• Read a magazine
• Watch relaxing movie or TV program that does not require brain power
• Take a walk
• Relax, sit and drink a tea or coffee and think about nothing, in others words empty your thoughts, I am GREAT at this by the way.
• Meditate
• Play some music and dance
• Exercise (at home or at the gym)
• Call a friend and share a laugh

These are just a few ideas. You know better than anyone what you need to do to get your groove back. Trust me if you try doing this for one week you will see how different you can cope with your business and life stuff.

Also make sure you plan longer self-care activities when you can. Things like manicures, spa day, getting your hair and makeup done, shopping trip (for you), hiking, family time and date night are just a few that come to mind. (My moms’ send me and my sister to the puppy spa once a week!)
So long story short if you do not take some time for self-care you are not able to give your true best to yourself, your clients, your business or your family.

Well I need to go because sharing all of this has reminded me I need to go self-care and get some sun.

Till next week.Emmy

Hello there, I hope you are well this week and looking forward to some great weekend fun.

I do not know about you but Easter in my house is fun and sometimes a little hectic.

See one of my human dads and one of my human moms love to cook so we always have a great meal with friends over, which works  for me because this means all the tidbits for my sister and I, and lots of belly scratches, which take it from me is not a bad life at all.

My sister and I always used to stay away from the kitchen, it could be hectic and chaotic, but then my humans learned to work as a team and get things done. Now instead they each work on their area of expertise and also help to support the other when needed and it works.

So that made me think- working as a team and using your team correctly could be the correct way to tackle, complete and accomplish things. A team can be useful and helpful in many ways, I mean let’s face it you are no Dynomutt. You may want to handle and complete everything on your own; you can do that but is the end result what you really want it to be. If you have a team use them work together and see how much smoother everything seems to happen.

I am sure this could be used in business as well, No?

Do you have a team?

Do you all pull together and use your strengths to accomplish a goal or complete a project?

Do you support each other and share in the load?

Take time to have meetings to use the team and pull together and share your strengths and create products or work you would be happy to send to a client or use in your own business.

If you are not sure if you need a team, or where to find a team let my humans help you.

Okay, enough of that I gotta go and watch the birds in the yard only certain ones get a free pass.

Till next week. Emmy

You may not be able to pick your family but you can pick your clients. And say this as I was laying here taking a short nap and remembering the conversation my human parents were having about who they really want to work with and who is their ideal client.

And that made me think you cannot choose your family. I mean think about it, there are those people in your family that are not your favorite people but you love them because they are family, like in my case I am not crazy about my feathered brothers and sisters but because my parents love them…I guess I do too.

But you do not have to settle in your business or career. Be choosy do not settle!

You know who you want to work with. If not, take the time to sort out WHO do you really want to work with? If you need additional help with choosing your ideal client let my humans help.

Use that knowledge when you speak to those possible clients or when you are thinking about changing careers or companies.
Take a minute and ask yourself these things:
1. Will I enjoy working with them?
2. Will I be happy to go to work every day?
3. Will I love what I do and enjoy my work?
4. Do I think that we can build a lasting relationship that is mutually beneficial for us both? (Hey why the smile, I might be a furry human but I am a smarty.)

If you answer yes to these questions, then you might have found your sweet spot in life. But if there were a few maybes or no’s, then do not settle. In the end it will be a disaster or you will be unhappy and even dread going to work every day.

The other thing you want to do is, if it is a new client do a try me on period. This should usually be no more than 90 days and allow you to learn all of their business and get to know them before you make a longer commitment. At end of trial time, have a talk and find out if it works for you both of you. If it does, awesome! If not, you part on good terms.

So all I am saying is do not settle and say yes to just any client. Find the right fit for you. You would take the extra time if you were searching for shoes. No?

Gotta Run I think my mom might take me for a walk.

Till next week.Emmy

We’ve all heard the common statistic that is often cited about the huge number of small businesses that fail in their first year. For many, this serves to put them off embarking in the amazing, inspiring and often crazy path to becoming an entrepreneur. But it really shouldn’t be that way.

With the amazing technology available at our fingertips, the laptop lifestyle is fast becoming the norm for many, and it lends itself well to coaches who are looking to spread their word to others around the world. But it’s also very easy to fall into some common traps which will prevent your entrepreneurial dreams from becoming a reality. So I’m shining a light on the 3 most common reasons why start-ups fail, and the simple strategies you can put in place to ensure this doesn’t happen to you too.

  1. Lack of focus

This is really common with new entrepreneurs, and one I’ve been partial too as well. When you’re just starting out, it’s such a new and exciting time, and it’s very easy to get swept along by the tide of ideas, and not actually get anything DONE.

The solution

Concentrate on one project at a time, and make sure you finish it before you move onto the next big thing. Keep a notepad with you so that you can jot down new ideas as they come up, but try not to fall into the trap of having to instigate everything straight away. Give your ideas the time they need to develop before you make a start – you’ll find that over time some will start to lose their shiny lustre, whilst others will shine even brighter – these are the ones you should follow, they are the ideas which have real value, and most importantly the ones you’ll be able to see through to the end.

  1. Not asking for help when you need it

Think you can do it all on your own, right? Wrong, my friend. Whilst I fully understand that as bootstrapping start-ups we take on many roles in our businesses, from CEO to accountant to graphic designer, the average entrepreneur has tried their hand at them all. But there comes a point in your business when it’s really important to ask for help, whether that be from a VA, an accountant or a marketing coach, in order to see your business grow.

The solution

Start small by outsourcing a one-off task, so that you get used to employing people to work in your business. Then you can make sure you have all the systems and processes in place to ensure a smooth transition when you bring in regular help.

  1. Not devoting enough time to marketing

This is a real biggie for small business owners. The dreaded ‘m’ word! You’ve got a fantastic idea and you’ve put together some awesome packages that you KNOW will be transformational for your clients, and yet you don’t put the time and effort into getting them out there and in front of your ideal client.

Growing your presence takes time. I know social media, blogs, newsletters and the like can seem like a massive time suck when you’ve got the important work of your ACTUAL business to get on with.

And as for PR? So many entrepreneurs I work with think they’re not ready to get featured in the press, and they wouldn’t know where to start even if they wanted to. This couldn’t be further from the truth – when you’re in the start-up phase, you don’t need to invest thousands on a PR agency to get featured, so long as you follow the right process. And you don’t need to be one of the big guns to get featured – your unique story is far more important than the size of your business, and it’s one that readers will find fascinating.

The solution

Spend some time each week & month planning out your marketing so that it doesn’t become overwhelming. Start with a year planner and plot out all the important dates as they come up during the year, then work backwards. Each month, jot down the key dates for the month, then on a weekly basis you can think about the inspired action you will take that week. Focus on one key topic and activity each week, so that you save yourself time and keep ahead of the game. And if you want to get featured in magazines and blog sites, take the bull by the horns and draft a pitch email to their editor, you may just be surprised by the outcome!

Bio

RM1Rebecca Miller works with inspiring entrepreneurs to help them grow their business through soulful marketing and creative PR. She founded her business, Write & Reach, in 2013, and has created The Publicity Programme ™ where she shows entrepreneurs step-by-step how to make their business famous and get featured in top magazines and blogs. Becs is passionate about creativity and believes entrepreneurs can build it into everything they do, whatever their business.

Website: http://writeandreach.com/

The Publicity Program: http://www.thepublicityprogram.com/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/WriteAndReach/

 

 

I know it has been a couple of weeks since I have written to you all, but hey I have a life too. Which brings me to what I want to share with you today. As you all know I love to play and enjoy life and I have awesome human parents that see that I get to do that, most of the time. But lately they have been working harder instead of smarter. So I had to sit them down and have a talk with them about this, because this was really cutting into my time and I cannot have that.
So here is what I shared with them and want to share with you all as well. Working harder does not always mean better. I know you have all heard the expression work smarter not harder…

Well here is what that really breaks down to, do what you are good at, do not make more work for yourself by trying to accomplish something that is either not what you know or not what you love. In the end you will be miserable and produce work you are not at all happy with and in most cases your clients will be disappointed with what was produced as well.

Next why do things the hard way, if you know how to do something quickly and still produce a product you and your customer will love, why would you do it any other way? Just think of the time you can save yourself and all the ways you could spend that time.

My parents are an awesome small team and they each have the own strengths and skills that make them unique. And they have really just started using this to work smarter not harder, which is great for me because like I said I love my time. You should also think about this if you are in a team time work situation if you are good at marketing but not so great at design or tech end of things, ask those in your team that are, to help you with the project. In the end you will find out the final product is something you will truly be happy to turn over to the client, but more than that think of the time you can save. More time saved means more time to play and who does not love that.

OH, I hear my mom calling it must be my time now. Until next time do what you love, love what you do. And always work smarter not harder.

Emmy

Today everyone is selling something on line. But there are so many choices out there that it leaves one wondering what the best method is for me?

Today we are going to be covering many of the common carts and the pluses and minuses of each.

WooCommerce– This is a free shopping cart and has been relied on for years. The issue is if you want to accept payments from someone other than PayPal, you will need to buy add on packages. Most of the common ones will cost $49 upward to $199 each. As you can see, these extensions can add up quickly. Also there is a NEW policy by PayPal that if you are a NEW PayPal customer, you will have to have all of your WooCommerce purchases confirmed by the customer before payment will be processed.  As you can imagine this could be a headache for you, and the client.

Ithemes Exchange– This is a great little plugin that is similar to WooCommerce. The plug in is free however, like WooCommerce, the add-on pack is an additional $197.00 per year. This does give you over 20 add-ons including

  • Membership Add On
  • Shipping Charts
  • Canadian Tax and US Tax Charts
  • Hook ups to your Autoresponder
  • Product Variations
  • And lots more.

This plug in is very easy to install and configure and is recommended as a great starter cart.  It also does not have the PayPal restriction as WooCommerce has.

Ecwid Shopping Cart– This cart had both a free plan with 0% transaction fees as well as paid plans up to $69 a month. Their plans are based on the number of products. You would take payments via Paypal or it supports over 40 other payment providers. It also includes a complete shipping chart so that you can ship via multiple carries.

1Shopping Cart- This is a great cart with some great features. It includes a autoresponder and a basic CRM feature in the monthly fee.  They also have no limits on the number of contacts.  They allow you to hook up your favorite merchant account to the cart. If you do not have one, you can sign up through them and get a small discount. They also will lover the percentage that they take on the sale.  In many cases this is lower than the fee PayPal takes.  The starter package runs $34 per month and the ultimate package will cost you $249 per month.  Note the starter package DOES NOT include Affiliate management, but for $34 a month, this could be a cheaper option than paying for an autoresponder program and the additional PayPal fees.

Ontraport– This cart is a nice alternative to Infusionsoft. The cost of this cart starts at $79 a month and limits your contacts to 1000. The next package will cost you $279 a month and allows you to have 25,000.  This price also include the ability to add memberships and affiliate management. Like 1shopping cart, is also includes an advanced CRM and autoresponder programs.  There is also a “If-Then” feature that will help you expand and build your sales funnels via your shopping cart.

Infusionsoft This is considered one of the best carts out there. It can be expensive and is recommend for the coach who is making at least $75K or more. The prices start at $199 a month and can cost up to $599 a month for the complete system. It is also based on the number of contacts. The starter package only allows up to 2500 contacts. For coaches that have a large email base, they would have to buy the complete package that allows 10,000 contacts. This cart allows for a full build out of sales funnels, a complete CRM and a complete Sales mismanagement feature. It is important to note here that most coaches that choose this will also have to find a VA or an Infusionsoft certified professional to manage the program and build your funnels. Support is there to help but at times this could be limited and wait times could be a little long, however if you are earning the money and making the sales, this is a great option for the higher end coach.

It is also important to note that there are other ways to accept money. Today Mailchimp, Aweber and Active Campaign allow you the option now to add PayPal buttons to their emails and allow you to accept payment via this system. Also naturally, you can use the PayPal button codes as well to accept payments. In fact, ActiveCampaign also allows you to build funnels and many of the common features of Infusionsoft for a starting price of $9 per month up to $300 a month.  Again, this is based on the number of contacts that you have on your list.

There are also other free carts such as ZenCart, OpenCart and many others that you can also choose to use. Most of these also are hooked to using the PayPal or Stripe payments.

The key to find the right cart for you is to determine what do you really need from your shopping cart. Do you want a CRM? Multiple Shipping Platforms? Affiliate Management? Sales Funnels? Multiple Payment Methods? Autoresponders? Once you know what you really want, the next step is to compare pricing and also ask for a free trial and take the time to really test them to make sure they meet your needs.

If you are needing more assistance in picking or setting up your shopping cart, we are here to help. Click here to set up your free consultation call today.