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You have an Authority site, an Audience, and a Value Proposition

Some quick notes from some of the questions folks are asking about the directory marketing model.

The Pain: “I don’t know how to approach my professional peers, or attract my ideal audience”

The authority site makes you a thought leader by virtue of the fact that you’ve taken the initiative to build it.

(want spiritual teachers or authors as clients? Build a directory that helps the public find them.  Want local insurance agents as clients?  Build a local directory that features the top insurance agents in your town.  Want restaurants and bars as clients?  Build an authority site in your local community that features the top eateries and nightlife, and then approach your ideal audience with irresistable offers that build BUZZ for their businesses in cool and creative ways and that PIGGYBACK off the idea that your directory and they’re listing – gives you them the extra eyeballs they’re going to need)

The authority site model has many lives, and serves many masters.

It gives you the INSTANT appearance of credibility, even if you have none right now.  (you can hand populate a local directory in a day, and on the SECOND day, approach your ideal audience by phone, email or ping, and have the appearance of being a thought leader or mover or shaker in your niche, target market or vertical, simply by having something tangible, valuable or interesting.

Very few will know (or care) that you’ve only recently launched this project.

(note:  For those of you who think you need to build a site like this for MONTHS before you can approach clients, it’s not true.  The first directory I launched using this model, with only a few live listings on the site, a woman emailed me back to to say some variation of  “you need me more than I need you”……and proceeded to tell me how with that few listings on the directory, she wanted all sorts of free extras to be on the site – and proceeded to remind me how important she was, and how inconsequential my offer was, etc.

I added her for free, put her lengthy self aggrandizing email response as her business description, and left her a bad review, not on the basis of her service – which I technically couldn’t honestly assess  – but as a human being – which I could.

None of this was nice, of course –  but it felt better than a small carton of prozac, and was very liberating and made me chuckle at odd times throughout the day for weeks.  Eventually my therapist told me these were not healthy feel good experiences, so reluctantly, I stopped.

So if you are worried about not being expert, experienced or important enough in your niche or local marketplace?

Fear not – i’ve got a carefully curated collection of revenge responses to mean people that haven’t been used in years.  I’m happy to email you a few if you need.

Mindfulness For Beginners

Mindfulness For Beginners

One of the best ways to learn mindfulness, or to practice meditation, is to use a body.  (preferably your own, as concentrating on someone else’s can get you yelled at, especially on the S. Florida Tri-Rail between Miami and Boca.  Trust me, you’ve been warned)

I recently did a very basis meditation audio for a spiritual development community, doing my best to explain some esoteric ideas around meditation and various out of body types of experiences.  (which is the focus of this particular class, and course, within this community)

I found it to be sort of a strange and uncomfortable experience, as I try to keep my interest in these more esoteric concepts at arms length from my name…..but decided, in the interest of keeping it real,  to share a meditation practice I’ve used many times, to get a taste of what pure consciousness, absent a body, (appears) to feel like.

I was motivated to do this, by dint of some others who are teaching in the same community, and sharing some very exotic “plant medicine” experiences with Ayuhuasca, DMT, and other enthnogenic adventures……. that made my tepid tap dance into the domain of dualism, a bit less of a real risk.

So if you want to hear me talking this sort of thing, feel free to listen here.

I don ‘t think I’ve mastered the guided meditation voice yet.  And as usual, I use very little scripting in my audios and drink far too much coffee.  Which means……this one at times, feels like – WTF is this guy talking about 🙂

How to: Online Directory Marketing Tips (and an Invitation to Watch a Web Directory Business Being Developed Live)

A few quick updates for those of you interested in building a profitable web directory in a niche, market or industry you love.

First, after a LONG delay…..Vantage 4.0 from Appthemes is finally available! Yaaay for patience! 🙂 If you are someone who would love to build a directory or business portal, or niche community, but find the tech considerations daunting, Vantage is probably the easiest and most expeditious path to progress….and profit.

Here is why:

The Listify and Listables of the world LOOK great, and have a more modern aesthetic in my view…..but, there are so many external dependencies, and so many moving parts and pieces and PLUGINS that all have to play together in a cooperative way, that there always seems to be some sneaky shoe drop disapointment every time someone updates something…..and you have to wait for all the pieces to play nicely together, yet again.

(this has been most recently notable with some of my readers who are using LISTABLE on some pretty popular projects, where one of the WPmanager add on premium plugins “broke” a number of Listable sites, and caused a whole bunch of headache, heartburn and anxiety for the folks running the sites.

As of a few days ago, this plugin issue was still an ongoing problem for these folks – and all sorts of roll back gymnastics were required to keep clients, customers and subscribers not bailing on the project)

So while I do really like Listify – and do use the framework on a current project – and while I DO actually recommend checking out their new “done for you” hosting package too (which I checked out on a free trial a few weeks ago, and think it looks like a really good option for folks who want a turn key hosted/managed directory solution), I’d still hesitate to really recommend these style solutions (WPmanager + Woocommerce + premium plugins + booking plugins + claim plugins + review plugins/bookmark plugins + bridge plugins, etc) for folks who are as tech challenged as I am – and simply want to BUILD a business – and market/promote and LOVE it in a niche you love.

For these people, I really do think VANTAGE is a killer option.

It looks great – I use the OLD version of VAntage on my own most active directory community, and I’m looking forward to upgrading it to this version, maybe as soon as this weekend. (Simply because I spend most of my weekends drinking cheap wine, wondering what happened to my life, and binge watching Netflix – I like to flex my multi-tasking muscles while doing both)

Here in the invitation: If you want to learn how to build a LIVE directory businesss, and earn EASY money using the directory/portal + online agency style model (e.g. – you would be building your OWN online agency, with a suite of high end services that you can immediately offer, in YOUR community, to people who need your experience and expertise – if you would love to be a marketing consultant, and want to incorporate directories/authority sites/niche communities into your offer arsenal)….

I want to offer a 12 month course LIVE experiential workshop where we will detail, document and deep dive into this process with you – in a step by step way, helping you launch your OWW business, while giving you inside access to what we are building at the same time.

(a project i’m developing now with partners, that is live, with outsourced help, content, courses, community, products and partners…… growing a little bit everyday, in March of 2017. (in the self publishing and “enlightened entrepreneurial” niche)

I’m only going to do this if there is enough real interest (the course + private consulting that goes with it), so if you are interested in this, send me an email (ianrhollander@gmail.com) or say hi/leave me a message in the chat box below.

Ready to launch a profitable online business in a niche, market or industry you love? We want to help! join us in a private year long workshop – get in touch below for details.

And for those of you just looking for the right WordPress directory framework in 2017?

It’s too early to say Vantage 4.0 is the best.

But it’s not too early to say it’s the easiest way to get up and running with NO outside dependencies – or with the fewest moving parts and pieces (and plugins) – so I’d certainly recommend if you’ve waited this long to launch your directory, you start there. (or here)

How to: Starting an Online Agency in Your Community

How to:  Starting an Online Agency in Your Community

NEW: Beta Course: Learn how to quickly and easily launch a profitable online agency from home.

Are you interested in learning how to build a fun, profitable and exciting online agency doing work that you love? In this audio, i cover the bullet points in the infographic above, and articulate what i believe is the absolute easiest way to create a viable, valuable, scalable service related business that empowers you in unique ways – and inspires your ideal audience to want to work with YOU (rather than others) as well. This is really most ideally suited for folks who want to focus on a LOCAL business, as the strategies in this particular course are going to focus on targeting local professionals who will immediately benefit from your experience and expertise. (note: it doesn’t have to be YOUR local area per se if you don’t want to start where you live – but you should target A local area, even one a distance from you, to really optimize this particular approach. Feel free to jump to the end of the audio as I share a quick story of how I started a “local” business a few thousand miles away from where i was living at the time (NJ) – and this certainly still works equally as effectively today.


How to: Make Money with Infographics

How to:  Make Money with Infographics

What could be better than to get paid to create cool, fun, informative, educational, entertaining and inspirational infographics?

I’ve written a bit over the last month or two about Adioma, a super cool and creative way to make highly engaging infographics and visualizations in rapid fire turn around time.

I even shared a few ways I’m using in my own content marketing business for fun and profit and based on the amount of times folks are downloading the graphics when they accompany an article on my own blog, I can tell first hand that they are offering value to may audience.

I had an A-ha moment a few days ago while stalking some of the great visualizations the founders of Adioma created on their super popular fundersandfounders blog, where they graph out, timeline and storyboard lots of cool ideas and events in visualized form.

For example?

There are so many topics I love to write about these days, and so few opportunities to really quickly and concisely cover the information in a way that encourages retention, while also offering an opportunity to be funny, creative and entertaining as well.

(something that I’ve learned the hard way can be a mixed bag when combining on a normal blog post or article – people usually want education – or entertainment – and rarely both at the same time)

But infographics, I’ve found, sort of allow you to push that boundary a bit, and create stuff that is shareable, potentially viral and most importantly for me for monetization purposes, CLICKABLE, as well.

(you can use them as CTA’s or in place of adsense or banner ads and watch your clicks go through the roof – which opens up a wide window of income opportunities)

But then there is this:

What is you covered an entire topic that YOU love, in nothing but infographics? What if your entire site is nothing but visual information – and you do one post a day or 3 posts a week or whatever you have time for, and you present your entire database of niche knowledge in a fun format that literally, takes mere minutes to create?

I decided I’m going to build a test site for our mindfulness project with nothing but meditation and mindfulness visualizations with fun and entertaining graphics and illustrations (which you can add with Adioma’s higher plans – I did just sign up for a year in advance to be able to do this the right way) – and I keep getting inspired ideas on how to “teach” concepts that I find heavy lifting to conceptualize with an article……but using infographics instead.

Check out their article below on how they’ve done exactly that, and have built an entire site that is monetized only through infographics and visual information. It’s really a great idea and a killer product – and their visualizations are so damn good and tasty, it’s inspiring to see for a design dummy like me.

(note: You can sign up for Adioma here – this ain’t an affiliate link either – someone reprimanded me in the comments below for promoting their affiliate program – they don’t have one or I WOULD sign up for it. It’s just a great service that I love and highly recommend – no incentive otherwise)

  1. Discover a content void – the easiest way to think of a content void is this: on one hand there are people who have a question that they are searching for, on the other hand there are not enough people who write answers to this question. So there is a void between information demand and information supply. These voids exist for many reasons. 1. Elephant in the room questions (obvious questions that everyone assumes are obvious but they are not). I wrote more on this below to give you examples. 2. Question about how exactly to do something – here readers are looking for more details than writers tend to provide. 3. Connecting the dots questions – these questions seek to find a connection between things that people have traditionally views as not being connected. There are others examples of content void, of course.

  2. Extract insights and organize them. How do you extract insight? Find the most actionable (advice) and/or well-researched (facts) pieces in each article.

https://blog.adioma.com/make-money-infographics/

Organize Your Life: Storyboarding, Wireframing, Misremembering and Truth Telling With Milanote

Organize Your Life:    Storyboarding, Wireframing, Misremembering and Truth Telling With Milanote

The more I watch TV these days, the more I value my organizational apps.

Milanote is awesome.  The more I use it, the more I fall in love with the myriad of ways you can truly keep track of what’s most important with such a cool and creative tool.

Jeff Sessions and Michael Flynn, for example, both could have easily kept track of all of their Russian ambassador meetings on Milanote, and while it seems like they may have been getting close to the limit, still stayed on the free plan too, where you can track 100 things or less like me.

I just created a brand new board on Milanote from my iphone while lounging on my new couch – collecting a whole series of inspiring articles on intermittent fasting, ketogenic diets, low carb high fat lifestyle choices and caloric restriction as a way to live a happier, healthier and more well structured life.

I did all of this eating a huge family style box of pasta and drinking half a bottle of wine, the irony of which, was completely lost on me until writing this post.

The good news is, I’m only eating avocados from now on.  Starting on Monday.

Some of the very cool things you can do with Milanote are:

Wireframe a project using various note types – links/images/quotes/text/colored boxes/arrows for structure and sequence…..and more.

Storyboard an article or idea from start to finish.  (I’ve outlined an entire course for our teachable school this morning using Milanote, and it really works wonderfully well for authors/marketers and content campaigns)

As we covered above, you can keep track of your lies using Milanote, so you don’t get stuck telling the Stuart Smalley Senator something that’s 100% untrue in front of congress and lots of cameras,before you get sworn into a pretty important office where lying in public is frowned upon.

In all seriousness, you can print out killer cool PDF’s of your boards using the export feature on Milanote….which is really a cool way to present content to your audience if you are teaching something, or doing a presentation, or want to look like you have much better design chops than you do.  (like me)

Check Milanote out here – it’s free, a ton of fun and really useful to boot.

 

 

The Science of Small

The Science of Small

What happens when you get small?  When you foil features and crush the inevitable urge to creep, leap and lurch you way to not launching at all?

I’ve always believed that the biggest enemy of achievement is the pursuit of perfection.  When you  try to do it all, you remain in perpetual planning mode.   Life is short.  So plan to plan less.  And do more.

I’ve got a quick confession to make.  I struggle with the ignominious enemy of wanting to have it all.  Wanting to do it all.  Wanting to launch it all, in a picture perfect poetic way.

Where all the bases are covered. All the angles are warm, welcoming, windows to something bigger, better and bolder than the original idea.

Don’t make this mistake.  Keep it small.  Find the things you love, and do really, really well.

Who are you?  What do you love?  What do you do better than almost anyone else?

Do that.  Stay there.  And keep doing it so you do it even better than before.

That’s the secret.

And that’s the struggle.

And don’t let anyone tell you different.

 

Monetizing a Web Directory

Here is a short video where I outline what I believe is the absolute EASIEST way to monetize a web directory using the online agency style marketing model.

This works wonderfully well in hyper local markets. (geo specific directories in “yourtownusa” and the Yelp style sites which are growing increasingly popular in the last year or two)

Do note that you can quickly and easily swap out the style of framework/template you are using to build these style sites, continent on your ideal/target audience. This example assumes you are working in a local marketplace, and restaurants/lounges/eateries/coffee spots, etc – are part of your demographic.

(obviously there are real estate frameworks you could use if THAT was your audience – this is a pretty easy idea to swap up and out, depending on who you are attracting to your site)

I hope this makes sense to those of you who are struggling to actually make some money from your directories….and have good wordpress/design or agency style skills that you can bank on – quite literally, to make this approach fly in a very short time. But don’t take my word for it. Think it through – see if you can see any holes in this approach – look in your OWN local area and see if anything I said in this video appears untrue where you live. (look at how many pizza places have sites that are WORSE than this one – or Sushi places or coffee joints that have badly designed “WIX” style sites circa 2009 that would love a 72 hour makeover….and at a bargain basement price to boot)

And please remember: All of this can be stacked and scaled. You can build a website for a local business – using this sort of template – and then offer a whole suite of back end services behind that as well. So you have the directory offer that you lead with – the re-design is the low hanging fruit offer that most will find appealing – and then you have the REAL AGENCY style back end stuff that you bold, build, structure and scale your business on behind all of that, in a fun, viable and valuable way where everyone wins.

If you have questions – feel free to ask. If you’d like to collaborate on a directory project – let me know – I’m happy to work with a select group of projects for those who want some marketing/strategy help while you serve your clients, with me advising you behind the scenes.

 

(also – forgive the short and abrupt end to the video – I accidentally used “Screencastify” for this recording, which is an awesome service, but i’m using the free version which only has a 10 minute max – so with like 20 seconds left, i got the “you don’t have to go home, but you can’t stay here” message, and had to wrap it up in a hurry!  🙂

More PROOF You Should Write a Book (and a little hand magic mojo for those of you still on the fence)

As some of you know, next week I’m going to be part of a 30 day, book writing challenge.  Essentially, if all goes as planned, as a group, we’ll each be writing, publishing and promoting a new book, from scratch….in 30 days.

So as the date gets closer, I’ve been looking for some really good resources to share for those who need an extra nudge as to WHY writing a book in 2017 is such a good investment of your time, energy and enthusiasm.

A few minutes ago, I came across this video from Brian Tracey, world class salesman and author extraordinaire, on why you ought to write a book.

He covers many of the same reasons I described in this infographic, so there is nothing really incredibly new here to see.

But I have to admit, I was completely transfixed by how Brian Tracy uses his hands in this short video.  It’s like he’s speaking a sort of sales sign language that was being channeled only to me.

First I found myself being lifted up, then brought gently down, then I found myself feeling  some sort of rodeo sensation, before once again, before coming gently to rest with a sense of inspired invigoration about my potential to publish something powerful and profitable, in rapid fire turn around time.

If i’m being totally honest with you, i started thinking…..fuck writing a book.  I want to learn some of that voodo hand magic mojo.  Because THAT is a gift I could actually use in everyday life.

Not that writing a book won’t.  It’s just that you’ve got to work up to that point in the conversation to make it count.  You can’t just blurt that out in a bar to impress someone.

 (believe me, i’ve tried.  more than once)

But with some of that wonderful hand wave-y action Brian has obviously got mastered quite handily (no pun intended) I’m thinking, you can skip the small talk and just get anything you want out of people, much like Keith Caradinne in the old Kung Fu series, but with a much higher jacket thread count, and a much more gentle demeanor.

I will also confess that when he said his books are published in 42 languages, I was thinking….that’s impossible.  No one speaks 42 languages.  What a liar.

Then I realized that he meant 42 people who presumably do speak those languages, did the heavy lifting on translating those books.

And then I decided it was time to put down the second bottle of wine.

Because drunk people waste far too much time on youtube.  That’s the key takeaway here.  And you really ought to write a book, too.  That’s the second thing I’d like you to remember.

And if you’d like to write a book in 30 days or less, and start next week, I’m moving my hands in a soft, subtle and circular way signaling you silently, that you ought to sign up below.

 

 

 

 

 

15 Reasons Why You Need to Write a Book

15 Reasons Why You Need to Write a Book

Here is a list of 15 reasons why you need to write a book.  This is actually part of a mini course (and 30 day book publishing challenge for those of you who want to participate) laying out the various ways that publishing a book, in 2017, can help you build your blog, brand and business in a whole bunch of cool and creative ways.

Some of these are pretty obvious.  But others, are a bit less understood and implemented, so I’m hoping to shine a bright light on some of the more unconventional ways you can use Amazon to promote just about anything under the sun…..EVEN if you don’t consider yourself to be an author in the traditional sense.  (which I don’t, as it pertains to myself, for sure)

Lots more coming for those of you who would love to self publish in 2017.  I’m running a challenge (on the Teachable platform) next week for folks who want to write, publish and promote a book in 30 days or less.  (and I will be participating in it as well – so you can see me start and finish a book along with you, if you’d like)

Have questions?  Feel free to ask away!  And look for a short audio in the next day or two as well.

Adioma Info-Graphics: How to Turn Your Prose (or Process) into Pretty Pictures in 5 Minutes Flat

Who else is spending hundreds of dollars a month on info-graphics, visualizations and other over-priced graphic design services?

Probably no one reading this.  And let’s stop all of this hate for graphic designers, too.  They are generally nice people who deserve to be happy.

But somewhere out there probably IS spending too much on infographics every month.    And if you some how stumble on this blog, THIS post is for you.  You’re welcome.  For everyone else, Adioma is a great tool for quickly and easily creating cute, compelling and high converting content that audiences seem to love – and that take mere minutes to build.

Watch this quick video to see how.  (spoiler alert – I end up in an uncomfortable looking bed with badly defined heartburn)

adioma visualizations.

This is a pretty cool idea for a newsletter – the author takes a topical story, outlines it, and then argues for both sides of the issue in a “for” and “against” section at the end of the synopsis.  She then curates some additional links to other authoritative sources on the topic from around the web, so that readers can dive in and do some more research on our own.

In an era where most of us are stuck in our echo chambers and virtue signaling circles of one type or another, I found this refreshing – neither succumbing to steel-manning or straw-manning the arguments or opinions – and presenting a pretty cool resource for getting a glimpse on what (and why) others may think on the other side of the street.

I still believe the moon landing was faked though.  And that we probably live in a giant simulated universe where none of this really matters.  Thankfully she hasn’t covered either of those topics yet.  So for the time being, I’m not selling my trump proof bunker with a cardboard cutout of Neo to keep me company.

 

 

 

 

It’s not that they don’t really exist. It’s that when people put together a list of the best 9 cases that they may be real, they run out of good material at 8, and then just use the same exact story for 9, too.

Why not just change the title of this list to “The 8 most convincing cases……” rather than “9”?

As someone who wants to make ghost hunting great again, this really drives me nuts.

The Biggest Mistake I’ve Made With “Authority Sites” (And the Easiest Way to Start an Online Agency) (Audio)

The Biggest Mistake I’ve Made With “Authority Sites”  (And the Easiest Way to Start an Online Agency) (Audio)

The biggest mistake I’ve made when trying to launch a new directory is most definitely a focus on selling featured listings.

It’s a slippery slope of insecurity and perpetual fear when your monetization model requires you keep on delivering “value” to your featured listings that surpasses the value that “ordinary” (read: free 🙂 listings get by a factor that far outweighs what folks are actually paying. In my experience, people paying $35 a month for a featured placement, when there is a “Free” alternative, expect exponential returns on that $35, and will harp, harass and harangue you to keep adding new reasons for them to re-up, month over month.

When you enjoy pleasing people like me, that can be a really difficult way to launch a new community, as you find yourself spending hours, days or even weeks trying to appease the same small group of people, who in total, are really only adding negligible income to your business. (and you are doing cartwheels trying to convince them to keep their “featured” listing – when you could be eating frozen yogurt and watching Larry King re-runs instead)

There is a better way though. And this is it. (the short audio above 🙂

9 Steps to Writing a Book in a Weekend: (And An Amazing New APP for Aspiring Authors Who Hate to Write)

This blog post will have the most spelling errors I’ve ever published in one place. And that’s saying something. Only this time, they are by design – or at least, left intact to demonstrate what you can expect from a killer cool new transcription app designed for interviews – that I find MUCH more useful for authors and content creators.

The app is called Cassette, it’s free, and you can see it here.

(I’m using the paid version, which is $10 a month and gives me 3 hours of voice to text transcription, which is ridiculously inexpensive – many services will charge that for 15 minutes, although in fairness, their accuracy is going to be 100%, where Cassette’s is not yet there)

So here are the 9 simple steps to write a book in a weekend using this approach.

1 install casette
2 outline your book (content cornerstone)
3 record your answers
4 upload text file
5 edit your text file
6 post to Reedsy or similar service (I keep calling this “Reedsly” on the audio – just pretend to slap me when you hear it and I’ll eventually get it right)
7 use Canva for cover (or outsource if you prefer)
8 price your book
9 submit to kindle

This not only CAN be done by anyone reading this, it could be a life changing, game breaking process flow for any teacher, trainer, content marketer or aspiring author who loves to communicate, but hates to write. (which is most of us, including…..on many days, me! )

I have included the raw text of the 13 minute recording I did a few minutes ago to outline this process, below. You’ll see there are a fair amount of hiccups, some weird words that ought not be there, a bunch of (HESITATION) tags, and other odds and ends, but the file below is pretty damn close to the exact words I spoke with my IPHONE on my desk, as i paced around my living room with a cup of coffee and bad bed head.

I didn’t do a word count below – but that’s a lot of content to work with – and again, I didn’t structure this really well, or plan it out very carefully – two things you’d probably WANT to do if the resultant file was going to be published on Amazon, or for a course, etc.

Again – I may have edited like 4 or five words – added some line breaks (as i emailed this to myself and it came in a jumbled mess) – but pretty much, the entire file below could be edited in 60 minutes, and if I structured it a bit better, could be a chapter on any sort of “how to do X” style book that are growing more and more popular on Amazon. (short books – inexpensive books – and books written for credibility + cache are becoming some of the most popular categories on the platform)

Check out Cassette Here. Again – it’s free – they give you 30 minutes to record whatever you want (this below was 13) – and there is absolutely no financial incentive to recommend it, other than I think it will serve some of you, very very well.

Hey guys so in this really short audio we’re gonna look at the fastest way to write a book now I’m actually gonna be demonstrating the exact a tool that I recommend you use. %HESITATION which you can download for free it’s a free app it’s awesome. %HESITATION I just start playing with it a few days ago
I’m actually paying for this but you can do the steps in this process. %HESITATION for free %HESITATION and I’ll outline that a little bit glove so basically we’re gonna write a book in nine steps. %HESITATION.

You can literally do this in a weekend then you could have your book published on Amazon if you start on Friday by Monday. This is contingent of course on people doing their job you can get this done in a couple days so in other words Amazon may or may not take longer than I %HESITATION assume or that I outlined but in my experience. The time frame on outlining this is very doable and actually %HESITATION within the realms of expectation Alright?

So here the major step step one if you’re going to install a and a free app on your iPhone or your phone and it’s called a cassette.
You can find that there’s a link below but it’s cassette dot design. And this is actually the tool I’m using right now to record this. And the %HESITATION act is designed to record and transcribe interviews they actually built this for designers but why they didn’t. Build this for authors or content marketers I’m not really sure that’s really. Who their ideal audience ought to be. So. I stepped to do you have the app installed step two is you want to outline your book so you know right I mean I’ve covered this. %HESITATION ad nauseum on my blog with various %HESITATION PDF and giveaways and blog posts on how to outline a book you can use the content cornerstone approach you can use the content cornerstone approach you can use the. Launch it with less approach which is – You know just six or seven simple steps to. A. You know would writing a book from scratch.

So again these are designed to be. Shakespearean plays or Hemingway I ask. Pieces of prose or war and peace style. %HESITATION them you know. Books they’re just designed to be. %HESITATION short informative. Teach one thing help make people better %HESITATION style %HESITATION book state you are very very popular on Amazon. These days so again one of the key psychological. %HESITATION pieces to this process is not over thinking it not getting stock. And. %HESITATION you know. Paralysis through analysis you don’t wanna try to write the perfect book you want to try to help people you want to share your experience. And you want to express. You are expertise or authority and the nature market or %HESITATION. Areas that you know you want to teach so again that’s the other component is think of yourself as a teacher not as an author when you’re creating this %HESITATION outline or content cornerstone. %HESITATION and you will get far faster or for further far faster than if you try to. Said ness. %HESITATION your book. Through the eyes of an author. Alright so now the third step to this process is record your answers. So essentially all you’re gonna do is. Take that outline. And let’s say you’re using the queue when I approach which I think is probably the easiest years going to ask questions. You know twenty one questions about acts. And then you’re going to you’re you’re were acts is your area of expertise. %HESITATION or you know whatever professional %HESITATION passion or purpose or whatever it is that you are. Writing and you’re just gonna would take twenty one common questions that people have about acts. You can answer them. Right so that is that there is a very you know that the basis of your book I mean that is the vast majority of the content. That you are going to be %HESITATION you know creating for this particular project. Alright soo step for is we’re gonna go back to the you’re doing all of this the recording in the this design. %HESITATION. Or cassette dot design aft so it’s actually called cassette so when you’re done. You’re just gonna upload your text file.

So you’re going to save it to whatever your favorite %HESITATION. Editor is for editing the. %HESITATION exported text files so in this case I’m using notepad I’m actually upload the example of of my notepad file that was generated by this recording for this blog post we’ll see how it comes out. %HESITATION. Steps six why said you’re you’re gonna add your text files what I. Just a little bit more detail %HESITATION. All with this step in my experience you’re gonna get basically a. Eighty to ninety percent accurate transcription of the audio so when I’m done with this particular audio. A lot of this is going to be verbatim what I said did the resultant text file but some of it’s going to be got weaker so it’s not all going to come out perfectly she’s gonna want to edit that so it’s not a straight %HESITATION transcription %HESITATION you know put perfection experience is going to be some editing on my side required but really not much maybe ten to twenty percent of this would need to be pretty it up and %HESITATION you know. Perfect did for an audience. Or at least improved for an audience. Alright so. %HESITATION

Step Seven: I am I actually gonna reverse what I have in my notes from seats %HESITATION stopped six inch or seven eight %HESITATION is just going to canvas dot com and create a cover.

So the easiest when you can hire someone to write to create a cover for you you can pay a hundred box you can go to a fiver place like that pay five or ten dollars I think the absolute easiest way to do it and it’s free it’s just going to camp a dot com. They have lots of great cover templates. %HESITATION pick one you upload your own innate scraped something nice simple don’t stress about it don’t you know don’t spend three days trying to perfect your cover. Create a cover and be done with it and Kanva dot com is really a great way of doing that for non designer types. Like myself and presumably %HESITATION most of the folks listening to this the %HESITATION. The other. Kathy I I would offer to this is %HESITATION if that doesn’t seem like something that you want to do just pay for it I mean I’ve had plenty of covers designed one five her for five Bucks ten Bucks. %HESITATION. You know if you look at summer I’ll even post some of the covers.

Now on this post so you can see the cost nearly five dollars. So yeah I mean you can get a good quality cover for five or ten dollars arts that. A a I think I’m on now might have this %HESITATION messed up but %HESITATION go take your text file that’s been. I added it and just go into a tool again free like read slowly and just format your book for kindle so just create chapters take this text file just break it into %HESITATION you know it’s a chapter so.
Once once that is done you actually have a a file that is ready to be exported and published. Two candles alright to step nine. And again I’m sorry I don’t have a numbered list, I just have a list so I may be getting this wrong but I think it’s that nine issues price your book.
I have a whole module in terms of. %HESITATION. You know in terms of my own. %HESITATION course on pricing books I always it means you have to decide what the motivation is right in the book of you trying to get make money are you trying to get downloads he trying to you know gain credibility I mean in most years cases for me the best approach is to price the book as. As inexpensively as possible to get the most amount of eyeballs in front of your content so if you want to greatest possible audience which I think for most folks is the smartest strategy you wanna price your book at two ninety nine or less.

In lots of cases I’d recommend ninety nine cents and in many of those cases if you can which you can I will say parenthetically you wanna price your books. For free you wanna make it free there are a few extra steps to getting your book are published for free some folks have had trouble I doing that as Amazons. Stated policy I believe as a two thousand seventeen %HESITATION.

They don’t accept free books they certainly do and you can see.
You know all the free books that are for for you know that are available on Amazon I have free books on Amazon dot currently in pen names and some %HESITATION you know in some community projects I’m involved in so there are a few steps to making a book free %HESITATION sometimes I knew some. People who have worked with me in the last few months are still having trouble getting a Amazon to accept other book as a free books %HESITATION but in general. Most people %HESITATION who followed the you know getting your book published on Amazon for free and up achieving that. %HESITATION.

And it will walk through those steps for those of you who want to do that so price your book again %HESITATION unless this is purely a profit clay for you I recommend. Two ninety nine or less. And then there are the final step is just submit your book and you’re done. So you have the books admitted %HESITATION and then you just wait and this is what I started with %HESITATION in terms of the public central delay is how long it takes. For Amazon to actually accept and publish your book typically it’s not long I’ve had %HESITATION Europe in general the experience for me has been twenty four hours or less. Sometimes people seem to have. %HESITATION you no longer wait times and that I’ve had a couple people again growth in the last few months had seventy two hours. %HESITATION but you know that’s out of our hands so essentially you just. Sort have to be patient but twenty four hours as a general rule is a good %HESITATION rule of thumb for how long it’s gonna take so essential if you started this on a Friday%HESITATION you should be done and have your book live by Monday or Tuesday

People often ask me my thoughts on the Trump White House, and how I think that may affect online entrepreneurialism, capitalism, creativity and doing work that matters most in the world, at this particular moment in human history.

In the interest of 100% transparency, no one ever asks me any of those things.  Which hurts my feelings.  Because I’d love to talk about them.

Here is the thing, though, as I watch our President’s 2/16/2017 afternoon news conference.

I find myself 50% entertained.  50% outraged.  and 50% terrified.

(and to all you math haters who want to quibble about carrying the 1 on my percentage totals, i’m using alternative arithmetic.  Losers)

I do believe, much like Eckart Tolle says so well, if you want to do great things, the time is NOW)

And not because there truly is no other moment that matters.

But because there is like a 42% chance our career as a species may be coming to an unexpected, ignonimious and orange end.

I remain hopeful, of course.  But hope and promise, as Chris Cornell says so well, do fade.

Do note that i’m still wearing the same socks as I had on yesterday, and it’s almost 2pm.  So my opinion really ought not matter all that much.

 

 

What is Content Curation?

What is the difference between CURATING content, versus CREATING content? Which is easier when starting something new? What are the tools, techniques or technologies that are best suited for launching a new project with curated content?

Content curation is one of the absolute easiest ways to quickly, easily and ethically “create” new content for your blog, brand or business, without having to sit down and write really long form articles.

A really good example of a content curation platform is TUMBLR. (notwithstanding the mess Marissa Mayer + Yahoo made out of it when they arrived 🙂

On Tumblr, you could (and still can) create a brand new blog, with hundreds of cool, creative and compelling content items, in a day or two, giving you the appearance of expertise and authority (or just making you look super creative and insteresting yourself, even if you’re blogging at home in boxer shorts and bedhead like me) – ALL by re-purposing the creativity of others in the community in an ethical and encouraged way.

(note: 80% of people will never know you are using Tumblr if you set it up right, and when they see all of the cool and creative posts on your blog, will think that it is content you CREATED, rather than CURATED. You obviously don’t want to pretend that curated content is YOUR content of course, but most folks can’t distinguish, and you get some unearned creativity superhero points just by using the platform in this way)

So here is a short video I did on using Revue for curating a newsletter, which is being positioned as the Tumblr for Newsletters.

If you are looking to set up a curated newsletter, I’ve used a bunch of the tools out there (including Curated.co, Volleyy, et al….and Revue is free (or super low cost) beautiful, fun to use and an amazingly easy way to share what you love, and connect with the content, and community of your professional peers as well.

Check out Revue here, or watch the video above to see how I use it on one of our community projects.

LAUNCHiT! Directory Marketing Model

Things That Make Me Crazy

Things That Make Me Crazy

There is very little in life that makes me crazier than the “tweet this” little messages that mediocre minds mock up when crafting that perfect prose for a blog post.

I don’t even know why it bothers me so much. I’m not a big fan of being told what to do. And I do get triggered pretty easily, even though I’ve been meditating for 6 years and watching Oprah everyday for 7.

But for some odd reason, the “click to tweet” button makes me want to jump through my Imac and put the author into a reverse naked triangle choke and pretend not to hear him tap.

And i don’t even know any real jujitsu, which makes that move a problem.

Here is the thing though:

If you are going to use the tweet this button, please, por favor, make the little bit of pithy prose you post that deserves a tweet something smart or clever or interesting or insightful or inspiring or thoughtful or deep or unique or ecclectic + interesting in a way that Hemingway would appreciate.

Otherwise, you are just contributing more cheesy content to the already dubious dumbing down of the world and adding more ammunition to the nefarious narcissism of low expectations that has befallen us all.

Please tweet that shit above, though. I re-wrote it 3 times especially for you.

Building a Marketplace? Get Inspired

Start a 30 Day Free Trial with Sharetribe here.

Here are some really interesting and inspiring examples of how quickly you can launch an online marketplace in the niche, industry, vertical or market that you love. (and on a bootstrap budget, too)

Gone are the days you need to invest tens of thousands of dollars in proprietary software, or complicated tech or tools, to launch something unique, fun, inspiring and uber appealing to your professional peers, or others who share your sense of passion and purpose in a given idea, topic or niche.

You also don’t need to do it with WordPress, either. While WP is a great way of developing and launching a minimum viable product, project or community, it’s no longer the ONLY game in town for bootstrapping a user generated content community.

Here are a few examples of some super creative, hyper “niche”, side hustle passion projects that are a bit under the radar, but are vibing and thriving in 2017.

1 – http://Hairbrained.me.

This runs on the Mightybell network, and it’s a killer cool + creative example of connecting a community of craft professionals in an immersive and engaging way. You can launch a Mightybell network for free and do about 75% of this for either no cost, or at under $99 a month.

2- Studiotime.io

The Airbnb for recording studios and sound professionals. This (like the others below) runs on the Sharetribe network, and famously was created in single night as a “minimum viable project”.

3 – https://www.kite2go.com/

A thriving marketplace for globetrotters looking to rent kites? Don’t laugh. The celebrity apprentice is in the White House. Which means, in 2017, absolutely anything is possible. This is a great example of a hardcore hobbyist style idea being developed on top of a world class platform and floated out into the world. (see what I did there?) This is a great example of what you can do with a simple idea, and a little bit of vision, and one of the better looking versions of a marketplace launched on the Sharetribe platform.

4 – https://www.eatabout.co/

Another very cool example of taking a personal passion and purpose, and building a fun, creative and inspiring community that aims to improve the lives of others. (in this case, fresh food, and dining experiences) These 2 friends clearly have a passion for good food, good friends and finding fun ways to connect the two in new and interesting ways, and have built a unique marketplace to do exactly that.

5 – http://www.sharegrid.com/

Find camera equipment.  Share camera equipment.  Very cool hyper engaged community and rapidly expanding to a whole bunch of new cities as well.   You can literally launch this style community in a weekend (they are also using Sharetribe) around whatever it is that excites you.

 

Of course there are many more…..I’ve looked a few great examples over the last week or two of what can be accomplished with a budget of 25-50K and it’s incredible how much you can do in such a short time these days. But THESE examples (above) are using tools and tech that you can literally launch for free.

(also check out Cycle.land – which launched on Sharetribe for free….and in the last month received a 400K investment to bring their vision of connecting local/tourist cycling enthusiasts with locals renting bicycles to other cities around the world)

Whatever it is that makes you come alive, whatever it is that inspires you…..just dive in and do it. There is literally no ceiling to what you can accomplish – nor fun to be had when you watch something go from your head into the world. (Ordinarily I would make another Donald Trump joke here, but I want to end this one on a high note. 🙂

Start a 30 Day Free Trial with Sharetribe here.

A New Favorite Podcast

If you like creepy stories, the Unexplained podcast is wacky, weird, sometimes genuinely scary and super satisfying.

I binge listed to LORE podcast late in 2016, (also creepy, paranormal style stories) and it was some of the most entertaining hours I spent awake all last year. (I also binge over-slept most of the year, but that’s a different post, for a different blog and a different audience)

The Unexplained podcast is very similar to Lore. Both are hosted by gifted narrators, and both are smarter and scarier than the ordinary treatment these topics generally get as well.

(I love the guy who does the Lore podcast, but I think the Unexplained host may even be better…..and that’s a pretty high bar to hurdle)

Anyway, I’ve listened to all of Season 1 in just the last week, and if you like these sorts of topics, you’ll love the show, I promise.