How to Book Consulting at Companies (Part 1)

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You may not realize it, but the most profitable part of the speaking industry can be training at companies. Every day companies all over the world hire people just like you to train their employees or independent contractors on a wide range of topics. Business Week says it’s a 39.3 BILLION dollar industry, that’s a lot of opportunity!

I started speaking in 2012 and spoke at 36 events that year. That year I made $16,233 from speaking. In 2013 I spoke at 12 events and made $22,000 from speaking.

In 2013 I spoke at less events, but more of those events were private training at companies. I did training at various companies where I lived in Milwaukee as well as companies in London and Paris.

Yes, you read that right. I was able to do training for companies internationally, and they paid all of my wife’s and my travel experiences. Speaking isn’t my passion, but traveling is so I went. My wife and I had an amazing experience!

I know many people who read my blog want speaking to be a part of their business. If you look at most ‘call for speakers’ you’ll see that most events don’t pay speakers. You can find paying events in specific industries, but you’re going to have to do some work to get booked.

10440867_649766655108775_4065718387184730005_nFor those of you who want to generate some speaking income a little quicker, training at companies can be your thing. I’m writing this on a very exciting day! A coaching client of mine just landed his first contract to do training at a large car dealership. The cool thing is if he does well. he has a chance to train for 20 other dealerships!

In the next couple of posts I want to teach you how to get contracts to speak at companies. I’ve already told you about the why, so now I will teach you the how. My goal is for anyone who reads this to get their first contract within the next month!  (more…)

How To Convert New Visitors From Guest Posting (Part 2)

The first time a new visitor comes to your website can be the difference between a quick visit or a future customer. You have a short window to make a good impression so you have to make it count.

I’ve learned from my past mistakes, and going forward I want people visiting this website to get nothing but value. If they do have that great experience, they will sign up for my email list, and start the process of getting to know me.

In the last three years this website has had over one million visitors. The most people who I’ve ever had on my email list, at any one time, is 15,000 people. I have NOT done a good job at converting new visitors in the past. Only in the last year have I learned how to convert.

The goal is not income. Yes, this is a business that I support my family with, but I don’t view new visitors as potential new customers, that’s the wrong approach. I view new visitors as people who are here to get help creating freedom in their life. I want to help them anyway I can.

My first goal is to help them. I do inform everyone what I offer, as far as premium offerings, but I’m not trying to push. If what I offer is what someone’s interested in, they will reach out, no need to be the pushy Internet marketer guy.

There are all kinds of programs, and courses that tell you to do this and that to get the sale. It may even work, but it’s not the best way to build your business. If what you’re selling has value, people will see that and buy it. That is, of course, after you build an audience.

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I think we fail to realize that you can have a profitable online business with only 100 people on your email list. You don’t need 10,000 people, just 100. If you have 100 engaged fans, all you need is one of them to buy what you’re selling.

If you get that first one you can get the second and so on. The possibilities are amazing! The goal is then to get those first 100 people. If you’re giving those 100 people value, they will buy what you’re selling. Let’s continue in our series.

Make your website really personal

I had an entire post about this, which you can see here. The goal is to get people to start to get to know you. The way you do that is by being personal. You don’t want someone to visit your website and feel like you’re on a pedestal.

Your website should be in the first person (unless you’re famous or well-known) because most people will know that you wrote it. When it’s written in the first person they can better relate to you.

Every page on your website should have a snippet of your story as it relates to that page. If it’s your services page, tell the story that lead you to offer the services you now offer. Put a human face behind the website. Do that for all the pages of your website. (more…)

How To Convert New Visitors From Guest Posting (Part 1)

The last three posts we’ve talked about guest posting and how it can help you build your online presence. The question then becomes what do you do when new visitors come to your website? How can you convert them from casual browsers into email subscribers?

Screen Shot 2014-08-13 at 12.07.57 PMI faced this very question after my big guest post for Dan Miller. Back then, I didn’t know anything, so sadly I didn’t add many of those visitors to my email list.

After doing some research I learned. If you’re going to be successful, and grow your online business, you have to convert new visitors. I had a half a million visitors to this website in 2012. Can you guess how many people I converted to my email list? 6,700 people.

That’s a horrible conversion rate, and if I had done better, my online business would have supported me a lot quicker. Even if you don’t get that many visitors, you have to do a good job of converting new people. Here are some tips.

  1. A killer freebie

If you’ve been in this online world for a while, you understand the value of offering a free digital gift. When people give you their email address, you send them some content you created, and uploaded to an email service provider.

This is a great way to convert those people that aren’t sure. Here’s the thing, a lot of freebies on websites aren’t very good. I use to offer a manifesto on this website because it was popular back then.

These days it’s not enough to get people to convert. People are looking for good, and actionable content they can use to accomplish their goals. They don’t want to read a list of what I did and will do. (more…)

How To Land Articles On Large Websites (Part 2)

Aloha and welcome back! I hope you enjoyed part one and took away some yummy nuggets. If you did, and already started applying them, comment below, and tell me what you did!

We’re here because guest posting is one of the best ways to build your audience. Two articles on the Huffington Screen Shot 2014-09-07 at 9.33.10 AMPost and the Good Men Project have gotten this website over 12,000 new email subscribers in the last two months.

Getting interviewed on podcasts and radio shows is great, but think about where people are listening to those shows. They’re in the car, on the way to work, or they’re working out.

If they like what you’re saying, they have to remember to come home and look you up. When they’re reading a guest post, or article on a large website, and like it, all they have to do is click a link and they’re on your website in seconds. It’s instant and within minutes they can be signing up for your email list. That’s the power of a good guest post.

In the last post I talked about the writing side of things. You have to do your research and write deeper content. If you missed it, there are some key takeaways that you can use. Today let’s get into the strategy.

3. Have the right pitch

Having the right pitch means a few things. Let’s start with whom to pitch to. Remember when we talked about research? Getting articles featured on large websites only happens when you pitch it to the right person.

Last post we talked about the Huffington Post and “verticals.” Have you figured those out yet? Verticals are the categories in the Huffington Post; the one I normally post in is “Healthy Living.”

When you get in as a contributor at the Huffington Post, you can post in whatever vertical you want. If you’ve done your research, you should know that every vertical has its own editor.

For you to have a chance to write for the Huffington Post, you have to send your post to the editor of whatever vertical your post fits under. The Huffington Post does have a standard place to submit articles, but can you imagine how many people are submitting articles everyday? One editor told me it was like 30,000 submissions a day.

To cut through all that, send your article to the right editor. That way you can get a quick yes or no. They’re usually very busy, so you should get your answer pretty quickly. (more…)

How To Land Articles On Large Websites (Part 1)

Guest posting is a killer strategy for building your online presence. You write an article for a website that is larger than yours, and they give you three links back to your website.Screen Shot 2014-09-04 at 2.57.40 PMThis is great for getting exposed to new, larger audiences. It’s also killer for the back links it provides to your website. Back links are what ultimately helps with your search engine optimization.

This is how I built my audience in 2012 when I had ten people a day visiting my website. I saw the value in guest posting and immediately wrote an article for the Huffington Post.

One of the editors probably looked at it and laughed. What’s wild is that three years later I did land an article on the Huffington Post, and I’m actually a contributing writer for them! I also write for the Good Men ProjectEntrepreneur Magazine, and Mind Body Green.

One guest post for Michael Hyatt put me on the map, and is still the number one way I continue to build traffic, and email subscribers. I’m guessing I don’t need to convince you of the merits of guest posting, so I’ll move on.

You know it works, and you want to, but how do you land guest posts on large websites? In the last post I talked about expanding your horizons. I talked about guest posting for websites that are outside of our normal circle.

You may have even thought about those sites and are ready. Over the next couple of posts I’d like to give you some tips to land those bigger guest posts and articles on really large websites.

1. Research before you write

Since writing for some amazing places I get a lot of emails asking how to write for places like the Huffington Post. The first question I ask is what “vertical” would you write for?

This normally brings on a lot more questions. I would explain how the verticals work, but now you’re going to have to do your own research if you want to write for the Huffington Post. Think of this as your homework.

The point being, if you’re going to write for a large website, you have to understand how things work. What kind of people are reading the website, and the style the website is written in?

Most of the time we write posts, and then think of where they should go, that’s wrong. You should research WHERE you want to write for and THEN write the post. (more…)

Look For Opportunities Outside of Your Comfort Zone

For those of you on my email list this may be a rerun (maybe). For those of you who aren’t, I wanted to give you a sampling of the exclusive content I send out to my email subscribers. If you aren’t signed up you’re missing out! I feel like I covered a topic that those who are building need to embrace!

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Aloha everyone! Just coming at you with some more exclusive content. I want this email list to feel like an10473175_656686814416759_2587197276082283448_n exclusive club as a thank you for staying signed up for my email updates!

I want to give you one valuable tip/lesson I just learned myself. I won’t keep you in suspense: look beyond the little pond we all seem to be swimming in right now

The number one way I’ve built my audience is through guest posting. One guest post for Michael Hyatt in 2012 put me on the map. I’m a guest-posting evangelist. I tell my clients to do it, and if you’ve been reading my stuff for a while you’ve seen me talk about it.

When I talk about guest posting on larger websites, who comes to mind? I’m guessing you think of Dan Miller, Michael Hyatt, Jeff Goins, Pat Flynn, Amy Porterfield, and so on. There’s probably a list of 15 to 20 websites that all of us think about.

Here’s the problem: if you and I are thinking about trying to guest post on those websites, how many other people do you think are as well? More than that, we all read those same websites, how much overlap is there between those audiences? (more…)

Sometimes You Have To Put Yourself In The Right Places

What does it take to be successful? Sometimes putting yourself in the right places and being around the right people. You’ve heard the Jim Rohn saying: “you’re the average of the five people you hang out with.” It’s true and if you’re in situations or around certain people you won’t make any progress.

The only way I finally made traction was putting myself in the right situations and being surrounded by the right IMG_0620people. For me it started with attending Brendon Burchard’s Experts Academy.

I met people doing things I only dream of and made connections that have definitely helped my business. Going to that conference was the right situation for success.

Besides that conference, the friends that I have today, the mastermind group that I’m in, and the other conferences I’ve attended have all contributed to my success.

Conferences

There are some amazing conferences going on everyday. Conferences that will teach you what you need to know. There you will also network with people who can help your success.

For a long time I was afraid to invest in myself. After that conference I saw the value and invested in two really amazing conferences. I also started speaking and got to attend sessions at these conferences.

I wish I had applied all that I learned at those conferences. I wish I had stayed in touch with all the amazing people who I met. Learn from my mistakes.

If you have a chance to attend a conference that can help you and your business do it. Don’t drain your bank account to do it but if you have a little extra cash look at conferences that will help. (more…)

An Update On My Dreams

Back in 2011 I wrote a book that was eventually called Are You Living or Existing? 9 Steps to Change Your Life (affiliate link).The book started off in the self-publishing world but was picked up by my publisher, Sound Wisdom Books.

That book, and my first book sold well, and were the driving force to creating this online business. The book is the10372795_653647568054017_3332585822894439047_n blueprint I used to go from a life of existing to a life now that seems like a dream.

Up until four months ago I felt a little bit like a fraud. While I’ve been busting my butt working on my dreams, I still wasn’t fully living them. In the book I talked about three main topics: my weight, my work, and where we lived.

I had conquered the work part when I was able to leave a job I hated to write, speak, and coach full-time at the beginning of 2013. My weight has been an up, and down battle.

I had done well and lost some weight, only to gain it back. On June 17th of 2013 I got fed up and decided to finally get rid of the weight once and for all. Since that date I’ve lost 170 pounds. I’m 10 pounds away from my dream weight. I just wrote about it for the amazing website Mind Body Green.

That’s two of the three things I wrote about in the book. The third was moving to Maui. This one stressed me out a little. We talked and talked but had no definite plans.

We finally got serious about moving to Hawaii and planned out the move in May of 2013. We started looking at the cost, and got a little sticker shock. How can people really afford to live here?? (more…)

4 Creative Ways To Chase Your Dream When Money Is Low

Welcome to those visiting from the blog of Jon Acuff! I’m very honored to have you here. If what I’m saying here makes sense be sure to sign up for email updates. I send exclusive content to my email list that helps you create true freedom and create a profitable online business.

We all have dreams and would love to make them a reality. Sometimes that’s hard to do for various reasons. You may be doing this with a family, which means you don’t have a bunch of disposable income. You may just not have enough income, period.

book picI’ve been there on both counts. When I started chasing my dream in 2011 I was broke. More than that I owed money to a bunch of people. When I got the brilliant idea to chase my dream of being a writer I had to come up with the cash somehow.

I looked into what it would take and the amount I needed was $900. This would get my website designed, my book edited and a nice cover made. The only problem was I didn’t have $900.

I found a way to get that money and chase my dream with very little money. I want to give you a few ideas if you’re in this same boat.

1. Odd jobs

The easy road would have been to borrow money from my parents but I had already done that too many times. I’m just not a fan of borrowing money from anyone. I wanted to do this on my own.

To come up with the $900 I did odd jobs. I cut my neighbors grass, I did yard work, and I cleaned houses. Whatever odd job someone needed done, I did it.

Was it fun? Of course not and I felt like a failure but I got that $900 in one month. Even after I got the $900 I continued to work the odd jobs because it put much-needed cash in our budget. (more…)

It’s Hard To Build An Online Business In 2014

From 1998 to 2012 it was a lot easier to build an online business. There was less competition and all this was new to many people. As of today there are 900 million websites, 250 million blogs and 175,000 blogs being added everyday.

I started my online business in 2011 but didn’t get serious until 2012. Back then you could guest post on a large IMG_6016blog and literally get tens of thousands of visitors and thousands of subscribers.

This one guest post on Michael Hyatt’s blog alone got this blog 6,000 subscriber’s and over 20,000 visits. A few guest posts like this and you were set. In 2014 a lot of big blogs don’t take unsolicited guest posts anymore.

Don’t misunderstand me. Guest posting is still my favorite and number one way to build traffic to a website. I send out one guest post a week and will continue because I believe the value is still there.

I’ve now even started to expand my horizons. Last week I had an article on the Huffington Post and the Good Men Project. These two articles brought in 100,000 visitors and counting!

If you’re building an online business in 2014 I know I’m preaching to the choir. It’s hard isn’t it? It’s hard to get people’s attention and keep it. There are just too many people talking about the same things.

I hope I’m not coming off as a downer because I absolutely believe in online business. I love it and the freedom it can provide. I love living life on my terms and knowing I can wake up and do what’s right for my life.

If you are building an online business and not seeing traction my message is; hang in there. Yes it’s harder and yes it’s slower but it’s possible. Everyday people are experiencing their “freedom date.”

Focus on your why (more…)