Sad News About a New Friend

There haven’t been many people that i’ve written often about on this blog – but a few times, over the last few months, I’ve written about Robert Rabbin.

I didn’t know him well (or really much at all). I wrote to Robert after listening to one of his great interviews, and reading a few chapters from a few of his books, and  ended up chatting with him a bit on Facebook about Mindfulness, living authentically, and doing great work in the world.

(we even had a strange serendipitous moment when a random member of a private FB group we both belong to – shared her favorite quotes from one of his recent books – and it was the exact set of words i had written down myself, on my IPHONE, while on a late night (slow) run through town, roughly the same time the night before)

I’m super sad to learn that Robert Rabbin passed away over the last few days. He seemed healthy and wise.

Vital and strong.

Alive and awake.

Playful and profound – and without the usual pretense that burdens many who write about finding magic and meaning in the world.

I didn’t know Robert at all – and yet, the little bit I did know – mostly his words and his work – and his personal warmth, in some strange way, has left a lasting mark.


Robert joined our beta list for MindfulMarketplace.com a month or two ago – and i never got around to processing his membership request. I just checked what he shared on the little “why do you want to join” page – and not surprisingly, he had much more to say than most 🙂

RIP Robert. You will be missed – but your words will continue to inspire.


Doing Work On Purpose

“All day long I have exciting ideas and thoughts.  But I take up in my work only those to which my dreams direct me” – C.G. Jung “Memories Dreams Reflections”

This feels like a pretty solid plan to me 🙂


How to Buy a Shopify Site (Series)

Shopify is a great platform for developing E-commerce sites of all types – from T-shirts, to music, coffee, clothing, beautiful artwork and beyond, if you can conceptualize it, you can sell it on Shopify.

One of the best things about Shopify for online marketers and entrepreneurs who want to buy a “done for you” business is their recent launch of the Shopify Exchange, where you can discover amazing shops for sale in just about every niche, market and industry under the sun.

Sometimes you can get an AMAZING deal on the exchange – but sometimes, you can get royally screwed as well. (i had a reader tell me a horror story a few weeks ago that was totally avoidable – but if you don’t know what you’re looking for (as many of us don’t – myself included at times) – it’s easy to become seduced by phenomenal numbers that are true, but are designed to deceive. (e.g. – a drop shipping store spending 20K a month on advertising, selling 20K a month in product, losing money on the transactions, but building the “appearance of authority” by posting gaudy numbers, willing to lose a a few thousand dollars a month for a few months, and then selling the store for a multiple far exceeding what the store is REALLY worth – once the paid ads are paused)

Here are some good resources for those of you looking at Shopify as a platform for you brand, blog, business and store.

https://flippa.com/websites/shopify (Flippa’s dedicated page for Shopify stores for sale)

exchange.shopify.com (the aforementioned Shopify exchange – still my favorite place to find stores for sale with the simple caveat – if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is)

https://thieve.co ( a great way of finding the best of the best Aliexpress products to drop ship for your own store. Carefully curated products – and a kick ass design that I love. Use this with the OBERLO app to curate high quality products on your Shopify store and get a great jumpstart on building a niche shop that you can mix and match your own stuff – with curated stuff – or vendor recommended stuff (using an affiliate or marketplace app) for a killer combo.

Oberlo.com There are some great oberlo powered stores for sale out there. Some are super appealing (the ones that have good natural search traffic on drop shipped products specifically – they are out there – and can be a huge headstart. But, based on my own very limited experience, be careful with OBERLO only stores – as they are a bit risky for my blood. (to buy – not to build. I’d rather use Thieve and Oberlo together, and start from scratch)

Lastly, as above, just build your OWN Shopify store, rather than buying one. I had a ton of fun with a great T-shirt side hustle biz I built last year for fun ( with funny, obscene Jewish Tee shirts to make my friends and family laugh) – and actually had one of the ads shared in a few different high profile spots – and one of my updates made it to the comments section of Rachel Maddow’s blog – which was a fun day to watch our analytics)

We’re also building a piece of MindfulMarketPlace.Com on Shopify – so I’ll post that here as well when it’s live.


Case Study Surprise: Cheesy Titles Work! (Even with Smart People Like Us)

Cheesy titles work!

No surprise there, right?

I hate cheesy titles.

But they really DO convert much, much better in terms of getting people to actually read what you are writing – rather than the more conventional content my burgeoning buddha nature wants to create.

Sometime last week I started experimenting with using a single word in my email marketing follow ups that had a “quotation” around it – and a trigger term that would get folks to want to click through.

(words like trick, hack, secret, guru, etc – this tends to amp up interest – even amongst those of us who hate words like trick, hack, secret, guru, etc – present company included)

The funny thing is – on some of my marketing lists, where the open rates and CTR are lower than i’d like (and the audiences are much more “sophisticated” than usual IM style readers) – the open rates double – and the total clicks go up exponentially as well.

I’m now experimenting with some of the same things on youtube – sacrificing keyword specificity (short term) for more grandiose titles with numbers, curiosity, and “trigger” words, to see if they convert better than than their more conventional neighbors. (i’m doing this by using a few different youtube accounts – and making small changes to each video to ensure they conform with youtube’s policies on duplicate content – and then comparing the audience engagements thereafter. Pretty small sample so far – but, humans being what we are – I expect similar results)

Here are my key takeaways thus far:

  1. If you can ethically use trigger words in your email subject lines – and care about conversion (or need to make some more money) experiment with this.
  2. When in doubt, use numbers and percentages in your titles, content and copy. (these are getting the highest open rates for me and always have – even though I hate to write clickbait-y content)
  3. Floss regularly. (this may seem out of place in this list – but it’s probably the most important – no one likes a content marketing genius with a tooth abscess – and according to Quora this morning, it can actually kill you too)

Over 4,127,538 New Readers (And Still Counting!) This Content Marketing “Hack” Actually Works

These numbers are only from one source (EZA) and all told, if I really added all of the various author accounts I’ve used – both for myself, in conjunction with partners, this number (JUST from EZA) would probably be closer to 7 million readers – and somewhere around 1.5 million clicks.

This doesn’t include my blog, Amazon, courses, many newsletter emails, many videos, communities, etc, etc – much of which, for a long while, mas o menos, follow this general content marketing map.

If content marketing, and story telling, and brand building, and platform making are important to you – I invite you to watch this video, and simply try and apply the various approaches I outline for yourself – and see if it makes what you do everyday easier – more meaningful – and more fiercely focused on results. (both for yourself, and your readers/clients and subscribers as well)



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