The below is a post that I recently posted in the Junto. It helped quite a bit of folks over there, so I thought I’d go ahead and post it on the official blog just to make sure I had it around when I needed it.
I think it’s a great representation of the online business world we live in and… in fact, it might even be something had I known a couple of years ago, I would have done things a bit differently!
So, without further adieu – here’s 11 steps to generate growing online income
Money Making Myths
I hear it all the time from people here in Indiana.
“There is no money in small town business – why should I stay?” or “Only people in big cities make the big income.”
There might have been a time I agreed with this. In fact, most would have at some point. It’s why Indiana and many states in the middle of the country have been suffering from brain drain.
However, today I’d say that both are myths – especially in 2017.
Why? It’s simple. The internet.
The Rise of Internet Commerce
Just like the introduction of interstates killed the local economies of so many small towns, the internet has essentially done the same thing to those metropolitan areas. We’re starting to see less and less of particular retail stores because it’s just simply easier to buy certain products offline.
And the great thing? ANYONE can be a seller online just as much as they can be a consumer.
Not only can you buy new releases of entertainment online, but we can also sell it and other goods and services on the internet ourselves as well.
If you’re someone who would like to make a larger impact in the world with your work, but you’re unclear where to start, here’s somewhat of a blueprint to get you started.
1. Find Clarity in how you want to help people.
Make sure you have clarity. What do you want to help people with? Do you want to help people with woodcarving? Fly fishing? Photography? Maybe even football. The first step is figuring out what you love to discuss and naturally help other people do if they’re interested.
2. Start building a following online.
Whether that’s a Facebook Group like the Junto, a YouTube channel, or a real Instagram account. (Actually you can do all 3 – this is what Laila Rahmatian is doing!)
3. Provide value by Teaching what you know.
If you’re just learning your craft, that’s fine. Get interviews with people who know the craft equally or better than you. Or if you’re funny – just be entertaining. There’s been a lot of channels which have boomed because the person is simply hilarious.
4. Hustle if you need to make income right away.
If you’re just starting out and in need of some income, there’s a few things you can do. You can do retail arbitrage like Tyler Philbrook, or learn some digital marketing skills. Whether you are creating content, working on SEO, or helping with sales funnels – these are all things that people have made thousands (even millions) online with. Check out JR Rivas’s group for help with that.
If neither of those are for you, perhaps you can sell your skill online. For example, a photographer can take stock photos for companies. Or if you’re a musician, write jingles for podcasts. Check out fiverr to see what’s available out there for quick cash.
Make sure you’re getting testimonials as you do things at the beginning for free or for the cheap. Having these testimonials along with case study videos of what you’ve done can be useful when going after bigger fish with larger budgets to pay you.
Also – start working on making contracts so you can cover your rear properly for work you’ve done!
5. Don’t Quit on Your Other Endeavours.
As you’re building income as a freelancer, you need to continue to build your following. Eventually you don’t want to sell your time for $. To stop doing that, you need products online. The most cost effective products are those that are called infoproducts. And since you’re probably already doing something successful in your life already, You can start building products that your following is going to potentially buy. I’d employ the teachings of Dane and the Foundation as much as possible. You can hear about that method in last week’s post.
6. As you’re learning more about your craft, share with your following.
How many times have we seem someone jump from one building to another or from one cliff to another after seeing the person they’re with do it first?
Same thing applies in business. If your followers see you succeed, they’ll more than likely have the right frame of mind to accomplish the same thing. Help them do what you’re doing and learning about. If you’re learning about ways to create passive income, teach what you’ve learned about that topic. That’s exactly what Pat Flynn did with his blog – and people are STILL replicating his success! (Just goes to show you don’t have to worry about originality!)
7. As you provide more and more value, find out what what your group members or followers really want.
Learn how to perform idea extraction, verify, and do presales of MVPs (Most Viable Products). Having a process for these 3 steps will help you craft anything your tribe wants!
8. Capitalize on your Testimonials!
If so, it’s time to go after those bigger fish! Heck, even better, just create a website showing what you can do, then send out emails to prospects redirecting them to the website. There’s all kinds of ways to find potential clients – it doesn’t have to be manual (Use Facebook ads if you’ve worked on that skill – that’s what JR did to find his chiropractor clients.)
9. Don’t forget to Grow the size of your Team
By this point, you’re probably making a decent income. Congratulations!! But we’re just getting started and there’s some things for you to start thinking about.
For example, I’m sure at this point you might feel that you’re overstretching yourself. Maybe it’s time to hire a VA or start mentoring someone to help you with stuff you suck at? A good place to start is Airtasker.
Also, if you haven’t already (which I know you have!) it might be a good time to invest in yourself. Start going to conventions and meeting people. Start thinking about buying those big name courses you always wanted.
10. Repeat the Process.
Build more products – hire more people to help! This is how you start scaling. As you grow your services and company, keep bringing on more people to help you with various things so you can spend more time doing what the founder should be doing.
11. Do what the Founder (or President) should be doing.
It’s totally up to you what that means. This might involve you working in your local community more and/or helping to start an incubator where you can mentor younger creatives. Perhaps it means going out and becoming a speaker? Or heck, maybe you could get into politics if that’s your thing.
I hope this helps you guys a bit. I think the biggest thing that I didn’t do on purpose was focus on getting results for someone. That needs to be the first thing you focus on. Then, from there, get 3 to 5 testimonials that you can use on your first landing page for a course, eBook, etc.
Feel free to let me know if you have any questions or thought I left something out in this post. I might actually make it into a more detailed opt-in sometime.