Hello! I am Adrienne Dupree and welcome to the Online Newbie. Our mission is to teach people in corporate America who want to get out of the rat race how to start an online internet marketing business that can potentially replace their income, allow them to control their own destiny and stop trading hours for dollars.
Many people were told that the way to be successful was to go to college; get a good job and life would be good. In the beginning you are very excited. You have a career and are on your way up the corporate ladder. You work hard, make more money and more than likely, spend more money. You get into this pattern where your lifestyle keeps up with your paycheck. You wonder how you ever made it on so little money when you started your career. You may work a lot of hours and even turn into a “workaholic”. Your job starts to take over your life and you sacrifice many things that are important to you for the job.
At some point, you may decide that this is not worth it anymore. You may have developed health problems because of the stress, you may have put a strain on important relationships, you feel unappreciated or you figure out that working hard does not always equate with getting ahead. Your job is no longer your passion and you want out. You may want to just quit on the spot, but you can’t. You feel trapped which is an awful feeling. You have bills and a mortgage to pay so you can’t just quit your job to follow your passion. You have dreams, but you don’t think it is possible to ever get out of the rat race. Continue reading Welcome to the Online Newbie
If you are one of those people in corporate America who is tired of the rat race then you may be thinking about other things you can do instead. You are probably asking yourself, “Do I have what it takes to leave the corporate rat race for online marketing?” One thing you can do to replace your income and job is to become an online marketer. That is what I have decided to do. At this point, I am still working full-time in corporate America, but I also have a part-time online marketing business. Now an online marketing business can be very exciting and very scary as well. There are some things that you probably want to think about to ensure that you are cut out to be an online marketer and an entrepreneur.
Are you a self-starter? In your current job, do you wait for someone to tell you what needs to be done or do you just jump in there and get things done? As an entrepreneur, you will no longer have a boss to tell you what to do and look over your shoulder to ensure you are doing what you are supposed to be doing. You have to be self-motivated enough to get things done. Starting a new online marketing business is a lot of work but it is also very rewarding as well.
Are you one of those people that needs to be around people in an office setting or are you comfortable working alone? As an online marketer, you may have a team, but usually you will be working from home. If you require a lot of human interaction, then you may want to reconsider this type of career. If you have an opportunity to work from home at your current position, try it out to see how you do. Are you able to stay focused and get your work done? Does it bother you that you are working from home and you are working alone?
Enjoy Computer Work
As an online marketer, you will be using your computer. Tasks include writing blog posts and articles, creating videos and audios, creating information products, hosting teleseminars and webinars, etc. Now don’t panic if you don’t know how to do these things or think this may be too overwhelming. You don’t have to do everything. You can outsource to a tech person or a virtual assistant. However, if you hate working on the computer, then you probably won’t succeed as an online marketer.
So if you are a self-starter, focused, self-motivated, don’t mind working alone and like working on a computer, then a career as an online marketer might be right for you. Online marketing is an excellent way to get out of the corporate rat race. You may also want to read “5 Skills In Corporate America That You Can Translate To An Online Marketing Business” to find out how you current skills will help you in your new online marketing career. If you are new to online marketing and would like some additional training send an email to me to find out more about one-on-one and group coaching.
You are probably thinking that Presidents Day has nothing to do with online marketing, but I disagree. For a lot of people Presidents Day is a holiday. Typically people use the day to go shopping, relax, take a 3 day vacation, etc. This was what I would do also or I would work. At my previous company, President’s Day was a floating holiday. That meant you could either take the day or save it for another day.
If you are a part-time online marketer, a day like President’s Day is a great day to get a lot of work done. If you are a part-time online marketer like me with a full time job, you time to work on your business is limited. I typically work on my business in the evenings after work and on the weekends. This takes a lot of discipline, dedication and focus especially working in the evening. Instead of relaxing and “vegging out” in front of the television after work, I start working on my online marketing business.
The good thing about a day like Presidents Day is that I have the whole day to work on my online marketing business. I get really excited and dream about the time when I can work on my business for a whole day instead of just in the evenings. I am usually much more productive on these “working holidays”. I use these days for my bigger projects. It is easier to work on a big project for the entire day instead of working on it in spurts. Sometimes you lose your momentum when you have to work in spurts.
If you are a part-time online marketer, I suggest that you also take advantage of these holidays. A good project to work on is an information product. If you are really focused, you can create an information product in one or two days. There are some good resources to help you with creating information products. 48 Hour Product will show you how to create a high quality information product in less than 2 days. 6 Easy Pieces of Product Creation teaches you how to create your information product, sell it and get traffic.
Another task that you could complete is to write a short report. These are typically at least 10 pages in length and are given away for free. Even though you give them away for free, you can include links to relevant products. These products can either be your products or affiliate products. You can also invite people to join your list as well. Short Report Magic is a step-by-step guide that shows you how to create short reports.
You could also write a Kindle book. Becoming an author is a great way to gain credibility and become an authority. Kindle Cheats shows you 10 ways to create amazing Kindle books fast. One Problem Product Creation teaches you how to write an eBook that solves one problem. Kindle Clone Method teaches you how to create eBooks that are guaranteed to make your money.
As you can see, there are many things you can actually accomplish if you have a holiday. You should try to complete a substantial project instead of working on little things that you can probably get accomplished working at night. If you have actually used these tactics or think that you would benefit from this, please leave a comment.
Jeanette Cates was one of the first people I connected with when I came online. I instantly felt a connection to her due to her technical background. She has started a 1 hour book series where she teaches you a topic in one hour. The first one in the series is about membership sites.
You may be wondering, so what is a membership site? A membership site is a website where members have access to content. Membership sites can be free or members have to pay a fee. If it is a paid membership site, then the fees are generally monthly or annually.
I am currently using membership sites for my information products. The content is stored in a membership site instead of a download page. This is better for the buyer and me as well. If you want access to your product, you just log into the membership site. If you forget your password, you can select a link to reset it. How many times have you searched for an old email to get the download link for a product that you bought? There is less support for me as well.
Even though many people are delivering their information products in a membership site, this is not the only way membership sites are used. They are typically used for a recurring program where content is added weekly, monthly or some other interval.
Jeanette’s book, One Hour Guide To Membership Site Plan, covers all of the ways that you can use a membership site. The book goes through a 5 step process for creating your membership site. The 5 step process is as follows:
- Choose your payment model
- Choose your delivery method
- Create your content
- Make the money decisions
- Market your site
There are various payment models, but the ones I like the most are fixed period recurring and unlimited recurring. The easiest delivery method is email using an autoresponder; however, it is not as reliable as some of the other delivery methods. A membership site is probably the most reliable. There are so many choices for the type of content that you can provide. I am going to start with tips. When you decide how much you are going to charge, you must determine what you operating costs are so that you don’t lose money.
One of the things that I need to get better with is marketing my sites. At lot of times, you spend so much time developing your site, that you don’t spend enough time marketing. One Hour Guide To Membership Site Plan describes multiple ways to market your membership site.
There were several aha moments or takeaways from the book. The biggest one for me was write your sales letter first. The second one is to offer a 30 day free trial to your membership site as a bonus to your other products.
Membership sites are a great way to add recurring income to your online marketing business. One Hour Guide To Membership Site Plan is a great book that explains step-by-step how to set up a successful membership site.
You finally have your new website up. You even have one of those counters at the bottom of the page so you know exactly how many people visit your site. Done patting yourself on the back yet? When you are, it’s time to move your site to the next level. It’s time for Web Analytics.
Web Analytics may sound very complicated and technical, but it is essential to analyze what is actually going on with your website, Web Analytics is an incredibly useful, and easy tool. Web analytics can help you figure out all types of information about people who visit your site. Web analytics is a way to study who visits your site, what they do while they are there, and why they leave.
If you sell products on your website then Web analytics can tell you what product pages are attracting the most viewers and which ones are attracting the least number of viewers. You can even find out where your biggest customers are coming from.
If you want to show up high in the search engine rankings then you need Web Analytics. These tools allow you to figure out which keywords work best to drive traffic to your site. It can help you figure out how many hits you’re receiving from your advertising campaigns. That way, you can build your Web content to focus on those keywords and campaigns, and to drive even more traffic to your site. Below are six benefits for web analytics::
Analytics Benefit #1 – Provide a Traffic Count
Unlike those basic counters on the bottom of a homepage that I talked about earlier, Web Analytics can breakdown your visitors by how many are new, or “unique,” visitors, and how many are repeat visitors, along with what pages, and how many pages, they viewed.
Analytics Benefit #2 – Track Down IP Addresses of Visitors
The IP address of your visitors is their numerical address on the Web. Not only can you trace them to their geographical, real-world location, you can also determine the time of day that they visited..
Analytics Benefit #3 – Breakdown Individual Visits
You can breakdown individual visits by the entry page, where the person first landed at your site, and the exit page which is the last page they visited before they left. Entry pages generally show that the visitor may have bookmarked your site on that page, probably because of its valuable content. Exit pages, on the other hand, could be your site’s most boring content.
Analytics Benefit #4 – Measure Total Time
You can measure the total time that visitors spent on your site, and exactly what path they took through the site. This can give you a better idea about how well-designed your Web page is, so you can learn how to better design your site’s navigation to direct visitors where you want them to go, and get them to stick around your site longer.
Analytics Benefit #5 – Trace Your Visitors
You can trace your visitors back to the links that brought them to your site. The more links other Web sites have to your pages, the better. On the other hand, visitors may have come straight to your site, which is great as well. It could mean that word-of-mouth about your site is working.
Analytics Benefit #6 – Weigh Value of Keywords
You can analyze which terms people are using in the search engines to find your site. This gives you a great opportunity to optimize your content to what your visitors are looking for when they visit your site.
Ultimately, the benefit of Web Analytics is to make your site more worthwhile to your visitors. If you would like to learn more about Analytics and Google Analytics, check out my free Report, Google Analytics 101.
I was supposed to leave Wednesday for Santa Barbara to attend a Mastermind with Connie Ragen Green. Monday night, I happened to check my email and saw that my flight had been cancelled. Not only had my flight been cancelled for Wednesday but it was rescheduled for Thursday. On Tuesday morning, I called the airline to see if I could find another flight. They were able to find another flight at 12:30PM yesterday at another airport which meant I had to leave a day early.
Yesterday morning was hectic. I finished packing, went to the grocery store and headed out to the airport. At first, the weather was fine. But after about 15 minutes or so, the snow started. By the time I got to the airport, it was really coming down. After we boarded the plane, it took quite a while before we took off. The plane had to be de-iced. That made me a little worried. Finally we took off and I made it San Francisco. We arrived late and I had discovered that my flight was taking off from another terminal. There was a little shuttle bus that took us to the other terminal. The little bus was actually driving where the planes were at 10 MPH. Finally we arrived at the other terminal. I then proceeded to call the hotel because I was now going to arrive 1 day early. When I called, Connie had already changed my reservation. We get on this little propeller plane for the 1 hour flight. I am not very fond of these little planes but I got on and tried not to think about it.
I finally arrived in Santa Barbara and went to baggage claim to get my bad. The funny thing was I had never seen a baggage claim like this. As you can see, there are these metal doors that were closed. When the luggage arrived, a man opened the doors and slid the luggage out. I really wanted to get a live picture but my phone died. My luggage never appeared so now I had to go to the ticket counter. There was one lady working at the ticket counter and it was her first day so she didn’t know how to track my bag. Finally the mystery was solved. My bag was still in San Francisco and would arrive on a later flight in about 1 hour. I had the option of having it delivered to my hotel in the morning or waiting for it. At this point, I was afraid that I would never see my suitcase again so I decided to wait. I proceeded to find something to eat and discovered that the one coffee shop was closed. I was going to resort to a vending machine, but there was no vending machine either. Finally my bag arrived, and I caught a taxi to the hotel.
When I arrived at the hotel, I was greeted by Debbie O’Grady, her husband John and Connie Ragen Green. My 12+ hour journey was over and I was able to finally get some food. I had quite an adventure yesterday, but it was worth it. This was a great lesson in perseverance. Sometimes you have to do whatever it takes if you want something bad enough. Just like I figured out how to get to Santa Barbara yesterday with the odds against me, you can use that same tenacity in your business. Don’t let adversity and doubt stand in the way of your success. You need to persevere and decide that you will fight for things that are important to you.
I am sure that almost everyone has heard of blogging, but a lot of people only associate it with individuals or online marketing businesses. People don’t realize that every business whether they are online or offline can benefit from having a blog.
The ease of publishing a blog makes it a perfect marketing vehicle for any type of business. Whether you work from home or are the CEO of a Fortune 500 corporation, blogs are a great addition to your marketing strategy.
Blogs create a face for your business that your customers can identify with and participate in. Blogs have become a valuable part of today’s consumer-generated media. They give consumers a platform to actively engage and participate in dialogs with key personnel within a company.
Many companies such as General Motors, IBM, Boeing, and Microsoft have all set up blogs to market their services or products. They reason these big companies have a blog is because it is a cost-effective way of communicating quickly with their prospects and customers. By providing a blog for their customers to talk about their product, a company can easily find out what their customers really want and tailor their products accordingly. This open-dialog between a company and customers have dramatically cut costs and boosted revenue. Now companies can get first-hand research information for next-to-nothing. A blog is the perfect instant feedback mechanism.
If you have a small business or a home-based business, the same strategies apply to you as well. You can use blogs for the following:
- Provide value-added content
- Build a relationship with your readers
- Establish trust with your customers while gaining credibility
- Create awareness about your product offerings
- Test ideas and research your market by getting your readers and customers to participate in discussions
If Fortune 500 companies believe that blogs should be a part of their marketing strategy, then why wouldn’t you do that as well? If you want to learn key skills successful bloggers use every day to get and keep readers and earn more money, then you should check out Smart Blogging Skills.
If you have an online marketing business, you may want to also have a local presence in your community. There are many reasons why you may want to gain local visibility. You may be interested in working with local businesses. You may want to network with other people in your niche that live in your area. There are five ways that you can gain local visibility for your online business – host a MeetUp group, host local workshops, hold live events, attend networking events and join local business groups.
Local Visibility – Host Local MeetUp Groups
According to Meetup.com, MeetUps help groups of people with shared interests plan meetings and form offline clubs in local communities around the world. There are MeetUps for thousands of different topics. If you go to their site and do a search for your niche, I am sure that someone has started a MeetUp for that topic. If is very easy to start a MeetUp, and you can read “Before Starting a MeetUp Group” to assist you. I have started a MeetUp group called DMV Online Marketers. This MeetUp is for people who live in the Washington, DC, Maryland and Virginia area who are interested in online marketing. We meet once a month at a local library.
Local Visibility – Host Local Workshops
Another way to gain local visibility is to host local workshops. Just as you attend other people’s workshops, you can also develop your own. In the beginning, you may want to start small with a ½ day, 1 day or 2 day workshop. You can use your MeetUp group to determine what topics would be of interest to your community. You can also search to see if there have been other workshops held in your area related to your topic.
Local Visibility – Hold Live Events
Once you feel comfortable hosting local workshops, you may want to expand and hold a full blown live event. There are a lot of moving parts that must be coordinated so you will probably need someone else to assist you.
Local Visibility – Networking Events
In my area, there are a lot of networking events. There are various ways to find out about these events – Facebook groups, MeetUps, local newspapers, word of mouth, Yahoo Groups, Google Groups, radio advertisements and LinkedIn groups. Once you are on the lookout for these types of events, you will be surprised how many there are.
Local Visibility – Join Local Business Groups
There a number of local business groups. Some of these are national groups that have local chapters. Elks Lodge, Rotary International, Lions Club and Shriners are all service organizations. Not only will you be able to service your community, but there are great networking opportunities as well. Fraternities and sororities are also service organizations as well. You can join the local chamber of commerce. In my area, there is a state, county and town chamber of commerce
As you can see, there are various ways to gain visibility in your local area for your online business. You just need to start with 1 or 2 ways, to get started. I am starting with hosting a local MeetUp, attending networking events and participating in sorority events. Leave a comment and let me know how you gain local visibility for your business.
Friday, I launched my third product, How To Create A Sidebar Widget. This was my second product that I created by myself and the third product that I have been involved with. I thought I was much more prepared than the first product launch, but I still ran into problems. At first I was going to just keep this to myself. For one thing I am a pretty private person and it was embarrassing. I was urged by a couple of people to share my story since I briefly mentioned it in an email to my list. In my attempt to get out of my comfort zone this year and be more transparent, I will share it. This is not meant to be a whining session, but, hopefully, someone will learn something from my sharing.
First, I always seem to find other things to do than work on product creation. I know this is silly because this is the thing that will generate income. Maybe it is fear of failure or fear of rejection. Whatever it is, I need to get over this quick. I had the outline of what I was going to do and my Tech Person laid out all of the pages of the membership site. It was the 11th hour when everything finally was completed.
Product Launch Lesson #1 – Do A Test Recording
I waited to record the longest video to last. I recorded the entire video in Camtasia and when I went to edit it, there was no sound. Now I am a little panicked. Has something happened to my computer? It has been making this weird noise lately and I think it has something to do with the speakers. Before I completely panic, I reboot my machine, try a little test and everything is fine. I proceed to record the entire video over again. The lesson here is to try a test before you start recording the real video.
Product Launch Lesson #2 – Make Sure You Are Not Logged In When Testing Your Sales Process
My product is being sold through JVZoo and hosted in a WishList membership site. This set up is a little tricky, because JVZoo doesn’t have an option to use WishList. You have to select ClickBank. I was certain everything was set up correctly including the integration with Aweber. JVZoo has a feature where you can test the entire buying process for 1 cent. I did that the night before and it worked. I bought the product from JVZoo and once my payment was processed, I was taken to WishList to create my login. Well, it didn’t work like that when others tried to buy the product. They were never taken to a page where they could actually create a login for WishList. I then discovered that the reason it may have worked for me was because I was logged in as an Admin. Lesson #2 is to make sure you are logged out of all of the systems when you are testing the sales process.
Product Launch Lesson #3 – Set Up Your Aweber Integration in WishList not JVZoo
I set up my product so that when someone buys the product through JVZoo, they are automatically added to an Aweber list. The problem is not everyone is coming through JVZoo so they are not being added to the Aweber list. If you give the product away as a bonus, then those people do not come through JVZoo because they are not buying the product. You can either manually add them to the membership site or send them a link to add themselves to the membership site. You should set up the Aweber integration in WishList notAweber. Regardless of whether they are buying the product or getting a complimentary copy, they must create a login in WishList.
As you can see, I did run into a few glitches, but as I execute more product launches, the process will be much smoother. All I can do is learn from my mistakes, fix my mistakes and move on. I hope that this post will help you avoid some of these pitfalls during your next product launch.
Courtesy of UMD Sports
Today was the home opener for the University of Maryland Women’s Basketball Team. I am a huge fan of Women’s basketball. I have season tickets to the Washington Mystics which is a WNBA team and I also have season tickets to the University of Maryland (UMD) Women’s Basketball team. The WNBA season starts in late May and ends in September. The college season starts in late October and ends in early April. I am so glad that the gap is over and I can start going to games again. As I attended these games, I realized that online marketers can learn a lot from women’s basketball.
UMD had two home exhibition games against two schools that didn’t have a chance against them. The score was very lopsided. Today, they played Loyola who is in a less competitive conference than the ACC. I used to get very annoyed about these games in the beginning of the season. I wondered why they would play schools who I thought were no competition. Then, I thought about it. You have new freshman coming onto the team and the players have been away for the summer. These games give you a chance to give everyone playing time and experiment with the line-ups. It gives them a chance to have a few successes in the beginning to build the team’s confidence.
This can also be done in the online marketing world. A lot of time, online marketers want to start out big. We want to develop a huge overly complicated product as our first product. The problem is if this product doesn’t work out, it can shatter your confidence. You start to think that “this online marketing” is not for you and maybe you can’t become a successful online marketer. But in reality, maybe you should have started small so you could have seen a small victory.
If you are just starting out, create a small product. Your first product out of the gate doesn’t have to be a $997 product. Start with a $7 product. Your $7 product could be a report, a video, an audio or a combination of these. It is great to deliver your product in a membership site, but you could also create a download page to keep it simple. Even if your product is $7, make sure you over deliver with content. Leave people thinking that they got more than their money’s worth.
As someone who can over complicate things, I had to really take this to heart. Keep it simple so you can get something out of the door. Your first product is not going to be your last and they will get better as you get more experience getting it out of the door. I would love to hear your opinion on this topic. Please leave a comment.