BEST PRACTICES FOR ANY BUSINESS AND LIFE, AND FOR FORUMLATING GOALS AND OBJECTIVES
In Part 3 of this series, we learned what compelled Jared Elvidge to launch “The Social Networking Academy” with Jo Barnes as well as his “Random Acts of Internet Marketing” website.
Here, Jared shares his most effective “best practices” for work and personal life, as well as his marketing strategies.
KATHY: On the subject of marketing, Jared, what methods have you found to be most effective in marketing your websites?
JARED: SEO and Facebook are my two current favorites. However I also really like YouTube for traffic as well as using ppc systems like Google AdWords, Yahoo Search Marketing, and Facebook’s paid ads system. The cool thing about using social media as a main component in your marketing is the “word-of-mouth” leads you can generate. The viral nature of social media can be huge in your marketing!
KATHY: That seems like a lot to handle all at once!
JARED: I recommend choosing one marketing strategy and focusing solely on that until you have it generating traffic for you. Then move on to adding another. I see too many people doing a little bit of lots of different traffic strategies and then they feel frustrated that nothing is working. It really only takes one or two good sources of traffic to have a successful website so there’s no need to try figuring out 10 traffic strategies all at once. You only end up spreading yourself too thin that way and not really going for it with any one strategy. Tackle them one strategy at a time is my advice.
KATHY: Jared, I need to follow your advice there! I’m guilty myself of spreading myself too thin, and your advice is well taken. It reminds me of the saying, “Jack of all trades and a master of none.” I need to master one thing at a time. I’ll report back to you!
But, moving on here… Jared, in your video about working our way up the Internet Marketing Success Mountain, you emphasize the importance of creating and documenting a COMPLETE plan – “start to finish.” I think that this particular step is especially important.
Can you offer -from your own experience – what a few of the components of a plan are always in your own plans?
JARED: Sure. When evaluating and tweaking my plan, which I do often (maybe more often that I should), one thing I do that I don’t know if others do is that I actually document for each major component of my plan the answer to this question: “How am I going to deliver tons of value with this part of my plan?” I firmly believe that if a person will keep his focus on how each main component in the plan is going to benefit the prospects he’s marketing to, and gets rid of components that just don’t deliver much value, he’ll do well in the end.
Here are some of the basic components of my current “plan”:
– A Facebook fan page of my own where I can offer lots of free help and resources to those trying to learn internet marketing. This helps build my list and relationship with those on my list.
– I’m also an admin on several important fan pages and groups to help build trust and credibility and attract more people who I can help. This also helps build my list and relationship with those on my list.
– A WordPress blog with a squeeze page and tons of valuable content – I like WordPress because of how flexible it is and how much Google likes wordpress blogs. I’m currently redoing my blog, but this is important because again, it allows me to attract a different group of people (those searching at search engines instead of Facebook) who I can help and provide value to. This again helps build my list and relationship with those on my list.
– A core group of affiliate products that will genuinely help the people on my list achieve their goals. These will ONLY be products I myself use and know for a fact will benefit the people I promote them to. Promoting these products to my list and Facebook followers allows me to earn some money while again providing huge value to those on my list. It helps to further along the relationship I’m building with my list.
KATHY: I’d like to touch on something you just said: You said you will ONLY recommend products that YOU USE and KNOW will help people. Thank you for saying that. I believe it lends a great deal of credibility to the marketer! What else is part of your current plan?
JARED: My own product(s). Affiliate products are great, but eventually I believe the best situation for solid residual income is to have my own product(s) to sell. My plan by the end of this year is to have a low price/huge value membership site that I can use to really help people wanting to make money online.
Along these same lines, as we just discuessed, the launch I did with Jo Barnes with the Social Networking Academy is again delivering incredible value. It has a guarantee like no other in our industry to ensure that anybody who ends up paying for it, gets more than their money’s worth out of it. Otherwise they won’t have to pay at all. I really believe it’s going to change a lot of lives.
KATHY: Jared, I love the Social Networking Academy – and you are right! It’s frankly unlike anything I’ve ever experienced before in terms of true value and – again – there’s that word “Integrity.” Anything else?
JARED: My plan also includes specific marketing strategies to drive traffic to the Facebook fan page, the blog and the future membership website. The plan does change often, but the major milestones and strategies stay the same. At the end of the day the overview of my plan is to meet and reach as many people trying to learn how to make money online as possible, get them on a list so I can provide as much free value as I can and establish a relationship with them over time, and eventually offer products and services to those people that will genuinely help them achieve their goals.
KATHY: You mention the importance of identifying your “end goals,” and putting them on paper, which reminds me a lot of Stephen Covey’s advice. You use the words, “What am I trying to get out of all this?” How does this differ from identifying your “Why?” For example, I love the video you made to explain your “Why” (which is to be there and provide for your wonderful family). There must be some subtle differences between your “Why” and your “End Goal.” Can you elaborate?
JARED: Definitely. You’re right – there are differences. I look at the “why” as the motivation. My family is definitely my motivation. My end goals, are specific “things” or lifestyle achievements I’d like to see my “plan” result in for myself and for my family.
KATHY: What are some of these?
JARED: I’ve actually written down exactly what kind of house I’d like us to have, what cars I’d like us to drive, what kind of food I’d like us to be able to afford, what schools I’d like the kids to go to, what kind of hired help I’d like us to have, what kind of an entertainment budget I’d like our family to have each month, and lots of other things like that.
Then I’ve assigned realistic monetary values to each item on my list (figuring out what monthly amount it would cost to afford this desired lifestyle). I’ve totaled all the monthly values up and then divided by 30 days in a month and it leaves me with an average daily amount of money I need to generate to afford that lifestyle.
KATHY: This is very extensive! I think that adding the actual monetary values makes the list more “real.” More tangible.
JARED: This exercise has done a couple really important things for me. One, it’s helped me to cut back on any ridiculous things I may have thought I wanted before, really thinking about it and evaluating how much it adds to the daily earnings goal I set for myself. Two, it helps me to be able to visualize what my life will be like at “the top of the mountain” more clearly because I’ve really detailed out what is important to me. I’m a big believer in the power of visualization and feel that the more clearly I can picture the lifestyle I’d like to manifest, down to the most minute of details, the more powerful the visualization exercises will be for me.
KATHY: Readers of my Personal Goal Planning Strategies Guide will recognize the emphasis on visualization. What you have described here will be a perfect companion exercise for readers of my guide.
There are just a few more things I want to touch on. I’m especially interested in how you prioritize and balance your work and family, and also how you use your time most effectively.
We’ll look at that in our final segment.
PLEASE CONTINUE TO PART 5 – AVOIDING SHINY OBJECT SYNDROME AND BALANCING WORK AND LIFE