~~~ Notes from Minnesota ~~~
Every now and again, I have the incredible opportunity to work on what I call a “passion project.” This project generally falls outside our established publishing niches, but it’s something near and dear to my heart, something I cannot put down.
Now, before you read on, I should note I’m about to discuss something deeply personal. If you get uncomfortable when it comes to discussing matters of faith, you may want to scroll to our awesome feature article. It’s by the magnificent Bob Bly! Consider yourself warned…
Lately, I’ve been chagrined to observe how the faith of my youth has transformed into something I don’t exactly recognize. Deep truths have been transformed into trite sound bites peppering the walls of big box retail stores. Complex Biblical passages are cited without context. Many folks appear to be somewhat unaware of what the Holy Bible actually says.
So, I figured I’d do my little bit to change that.
I, and my fabulous Filbert Publishing team, created what we call a “Consecrated Journal.” It’s a small Bible, no commentary with super wide margins, a perfect place to journal, doodle, study without feeling like you’re studying.
The first in this series is done and number two is ready for release very soon.
If you’re a person of faith, I hope you’ll check out this poignant series. (Plus, I made a fast one minute video to show how it works!)
I probably won’t mention this project much here, but considering how pleased I am with how this is unfolding, I figured it merited a mention. Peruse this beautiful volume here (plus, check out my one minute vid!) Ignore my messy desk, classy paper weight, and the strange black square blocking a credit card laying next to the book. Good grief! I need to work on my video-making game!
‘Til next time,
P.S. Check out our personal bestsellers!
Let’s talk shop!
This month in the Creative Entrepreneur Newsletter? We’re discussing advertising, audience selection, and some hard truths when it comes to persuasion. Oh… and if you want to make a living writing, make sure you do one thing first. (How’s that for a teaser?)
Heck, it’s only 4.99 a month, the price of a mocha.
Freelancing is ever evolving… unrecognizable from when I began during the Internet stone ages.
So… let’s untangle these crazy, all important topics. We’ll gossip (just a little). Share the latest and greatest info. Perhaps we’ll have a little fun, too.
Let’s hang out at the Mocha Club.
Get more info here (and download a complementary issue of The Creative Entrepreneur Newsletter.
Just click here: https://filbertpublishing.com/multi/
25 Secrets of Online Marketing Success
(Article courtesy of Bob Bly)
2. Following your passion—doing what you love—does not guarantee financial success. But not doing what you love guarantees a life of boredom and unhappiness. The trick is to find a niche where your passions and interests intersect with the needs of the market.
3. Learn a financially valuable skill so you can command a decent salary or (if you are self employed) a respectable fee.
4. Those workers and service providers who command top dollar either: (a) perform a service that makes or saves their employer or client money or time, (b) have a skill for which the demand exceeds the supply, or (c) specialize in a narrow niche with little competition.
5. If you can earn a salary or generate a net income as a self‐employed service professional or independent contractor of $200,000 a year or more, you won’t get rich. But your life will be easier and you will be financially more secure than 95% of Americans.
6. Given the choice, have your children when you are young and possess the energy it takes to parent active youngsters.
7. Spend as much time as you can with your children when they are young and still want you, even if you must make sacrifices in your professional achievements to do so. This time passes quickly and once it’s gone, it’s gone for good.
8. Strive to achieve a liquid net worth of at least $2 million by age 50. You won’t be rich, but again, you’ll have more financial security than about 95% of Americans.
9. The best piece of financial advice I ever got was from Florida freelance writer David Kohn, who told me: “Live below your means.” Doing so further enhances your financial security.
10. With your wealth, avoid buying material possessions that are unnecessary—especially luxuries that depreciate in value over time. Use your money to buy income‐producing assets, assets that appreciate in value, or services that free up your time for other activities.
11. Avoid debt of any kind to the extent you are able. I have zero consumer debt except the mortgages on investment properties. Cars I buy for cash. If you have to get a loan or lease to drive a particular model car, you can’t afford it.
12. If you lend money to friends or family, do it with the expectation that the money is really a gift rather than a loan, and do not expect to ever get the money back. If you are repaid, even in part, consider it found money.
13. Every day you wake up and everyone in your family is in good health, and you have food to eat and a decent place to live, you are ahead of the game.
14. When writers, Internet marketers, and entrepreneurs brag to you about how much money they make, divide the figure they give by three. As my colleague Fred Gleeck is fond of pointing out, the only numbers you can trust are your own.
15. Always in your business, under‐promise and over‐deliver. Give your customers not their money’s worth, but more than they have a right to expect. Err on the side of being too generous rather than being too rigid or strict.
16. Before criticizing a supplier or vendor, say something positive—what you like about the work—first. The more insulted a vendor feels, the less motivated they become to serve you.
17. Do not allow yourself to be belittled, insulted, or demeaned verbally or in writing by others. When someone makes a snide or degrading comment, your reply should be: “What was your purpose in making that comment to me?” It will stop them in their tracks, and embarrass them so they never do it again to you.
18. Do not give people unsolicited advice.
19. To paraphrase Dan Kennedy, guard your time like the gold in Fort Knox. You can always make more money, but time lost or wasted is gone forever.
20. As long as a business or life decision does not involve risking the mortgage money, make it quickly. Successful people are able to make swift decisions and carry them out with speed.
21. The #1 difference between successful people and those less successful is that successful people act on their ideas. Ideas are a dime a dozen. Without action, ideas are worthless.
22. Do not think you must reinvent the wheel on every new product or business project. Most things have already been done before. All you need to do is add a twist or put your own spin on a product or service to create demand and make it profitable.
23. If you are successful, you can be arrogant and boastful. But why do it? Your bragging makes others who are less successful feel badly about themselves. What’s the point of doing that? And don’t refer to yourself as a genius or superstar in your marketing copy. If you were a genius, you wouldn’t have to say it—instead others would be saying it and you could quote them.
24. Focus on your work—on creating valuable products, giving great service, going the extra mile for your customers—rather than how much money you want to make.
25. Start investing right away, when you are young. Do this early enough, and compounding can make you rich. Wait until you’re 50 and 60, and you could find yourself in desperate straits. And diversify. Put 10% of your wealth in an investment that moves in opposition to the stock market, such as precious metals.
Editor’s Note: We just love Bob Bly around here. So, if you’ve made it this far, if you order Bob Bly’s Guide to Freelance Writing Success directly from us, you can nab it for 20 percent off AND you’ll receive his bonus CD with a ton of extra articles, wisdom, and fun stuff. (You can’t get the CD anywhere but at this link).
Here’s your coupon code for 20 percent off: YRXGH2
You can use any of these articles free of charge on your own website or zine. Just don’t make any changes and be sure to include this byline:
This article is courtesy of Filbert Publishing. Make your writing sparkle, write killer queries, get published. Subscribe to Writing Etc., the free e-mag for freelancers and receive the e-book “Power Queries.” http://filbertpublishing.com