CEI 042: Finding (and Charging) the Right Price

pricing modelsFinding and charging the right price is by far the most challenging issue that many entrepreneurs face.

Today, Megan sits down with Danny to discuss why it’s so difficult to find the right price, and also how to stick to your guns after you have decided on the right price for your product or service.

Figuring out your “right price” is a matter of researching your competitors: what they’re charging, where you’re better and where you’re worse, and how that will translate into value for your ideal customer.

On the other hand, once you have taken those factors into account, asking for the price you’ve set isn’t easy, either!

On this week’s podcast, Danny and Megan will explore both of these issues – how to find the right price, and how to ask for it. They’ll give you some clear guidelines to follow to determine what pricing models you should use, and a few tactics you should not use when determining pricing.

Podcast run time: 24 min 36 seconds

And don’t forget that you can also download the transcript of this podcast.

[Read more...]

How to Improve Your Business Cash Flow in 2014

business cash flowIn the popular press, CEOs like to brag about how much revenue their company has and how much they own, while standing in front of their beautiful estates and fancy cars.

However, you and I both know that none of that really matters.

Who cares if you have a lot of revenue and no profit?  Who cares if you own a lot of real estate but are in debt over your head and are barely making the payments?

The bottom-line: Cash = Freedom

I’m a banker and know first-hand that debt can be poison to your business and your personal life. Now, I know that you probably hate the idea of debt. In fact, the thought of getting a loan to start a business might make you want to throw-up.

However, I still want you to read this post.  Why? 

Because if you know and understand how banks underwrite businesses you can ultimately build a stronger business – with or without debt!  Using the information below you can learn to analyze your business to improve your business cash flow this year.

Let’s begin, shall we?
[Read more...]

The Power of Internet Marketing Promotional Plans

internet marketing planWhether it’s an astonishingly potent new viral sensation or a preachy blog post that pokes at sacred cows and common practices, the general tone in marketing is that nobody is doing anything right.  But, everybody knows how it should be done.

There’s often a huge separation between what most marketers say, and what we actually do.

With conflicting viewpoints, no commonly-accepted guidelines, and a confusing mass of information, trying to follow the latest marketing trends can feel like being pinged back and forth between completely different philosophies.

The solution?

Don’t Be a Follower

That sounds great, of course, but what does it mean? How do you get off the ‘hot new tactic’ treadmill?

Well, there’s a crucial difference between those who follow and those who set trends.

Followers don’t have a plan. They’re reactionary. Their strategies are formed rashly over a short amount of time, using only the immediately available resources, and are flimsy enough to be dropped for the next trend, fad, or idea that comes into play.

Tweet it! If you want to set agendas, make rules, and come out on top over the long-term, then you’re going to need an internet marketing plan.
[Read more...]

Project ABC: Changes Across the Board

abcHappy Spring, Beacons! I’ve got some interesting news. Actually, I have a lot of interesting news!

A personal change.

A Project ABC change.

And a change to the team at Firepole.

I’ll start with the update you’ve been expecting. :-)

In the last Project ABC update I expressed how prioritizing was a challenge for me – and you all gave me some exceptional advice about how to make more time for Paying for Life. I tried a bunch of them – and even settled on a schedule that was letting me make some really good, and consistent inroads in developing things. But then something changed.

An opportunity came along to take a risk, learn something new, and build something altogether different than what I’ve been working on so far. To give you a little background on where this is coming from – I want to tell you about my honeymoon… [Read more...]

How to Use Business Storytelling to Find Your Message

business storytellingLife coaches, health coaches, yoga teachers and the like, please gather round.

Your business is really more of an art form, isn’t it?  An art form with a real core message that’s ready to take flight.

And yet, getting your message out to the world is difficult. Really difficult.

Why? Why do other businesses have no trouble with business storytelling while you struggle to get started?

It’s because you’ve succumbed to the greatest lie of all time: self-promotion is inauthentic.

Time To Do Some Myth-Busting

Tweet it! Shameless self-promotion is a completely different animal than authentic storytelling.

When you’re able to take a step back from your business for a minute and start to focus on your art form you can see this a little clearer.
[Read more...]

CEI 041: Hugh Culver on Discipline and Productivity

Hugh CulverDiscipline and productivity are two of the biggest keys to growing your business, but what exactly do they mean?

Today, Danny interviews Hugh Culver, who comes from a really interesting background in adventure tourism (think whitewater rafting and private tours in Antartica) before transitioning into a corporate consulting role.

About three years ago, Hugh turned his attention from corporate consulting to his third successful business, which grew out of his best-selling book Give Me a Break.

On this week’s podcast, Danny and Hugh explore the idea of discipline and productivity – what these terms actually mean and how to make them work for you. They’ll even cover how to exercise your discipline and productivity muscles!

Podcast run time: 33 min 26 seconds

And don’t forget that you can also download the transcript of this podcast.

[Read more...]

How to Get Published on Forbes.com Without Really Trying

blog marketingYes, you read the headline correctly: this post is all about how to “accidentally” get published on Forbes.com.

Now, I know what you’re thinking: Tweet it! Forbes.com doesn’t publish just anyone, let alone by accident. So allow me to set the scene for you.

How I Got Published on Forbes

It was the day my first major guest article was to go live. I had just started my personal financial planning business, and was thrilled to be getting press on LearnVest, a Mint.com for women that targeted my niche perfectly.

What’s more, I had waited exactly 4 months for this post to go live. This would be my first major post on the site. As I’m sure you can imagine, my anticipation was off the charts!

Throughout the first 4 hours of the day, I was completely consumed by the stats of my post. I scanned social media interactions, refreshed LearnVest for comments, and delighted in a steady inflow of new subscribers.

I was on top of the world.
[Read more...]

What is a DDoS Attack, and How Can I Protect My Business?

what is a ddos attack Tweet it! Are you aware of the latest threat to your online business? It goes by the innocuous sounding name of DDoS .

That stands for Distributed Denial of Service and it’s no coincidence that it almost always gets used with the word “attack,” as in DDoS attack. It has become commonplace enough to have its own Wikipedia entry, and it’s not a short one anymore, either.

It’s sad, but DDoS attacks are becoming as commonplace as car theft. As yet, nobody has figured out how to protect society from this new evil. Like car theft, it doesn’t affect you every day, but when it does, it causes dramatic (and traumatic) disruption and loss.

You are particularly susceptible to this new form of terrorism if you make your living from the internet. To do that, you use service providers, from email servers like MailChimp, Aweber, etc. and hosts like Hostgator, GoDaddy, etc. to payment processors.

Aweber recently got shut down by a DDoS attack, but they are by no means the only one. Simply Google ” DDoS attacks” and sit back in disgust as your screen fills with endless examples.

It’s not beyond the realm of possibility that the next World War will be fought on the internet. That would, of course, be the ultimate irony, because the internet was developed by the U.S. Armed Forces solely as an impenetrable defense against a nuclear war.

Until then, though, DDoS attacks happen everywhere on a smaller scale, and that’s enough for us to be concerned about right now.
[Read more...]

7 Embarrassing Email Marketing Mistakes

email markting tipsLook around the Internet and you’ll see lots of attempts of attracting traffic. And more often than not, the goal is to get subscribers.

But then what?

Tweet it! Having subscribers doesn’t equal income – it only equals great opportunity. How well you use different email marketing strategies and engage your audience decides how well you cash in on the opportunity.

You can deduce how marketing savvy someone is based on their emails. Noticing the difference between good amateurs and true pros can be a bit tricky, but spotting beginners is easy; they make embarrassingly simple mistakes.

If you fall for those mistakes, you might as well stop collecting emails and move to asking your visitors for their shoe sizes and pet names.

Here are seven of the most common email marketing mistakes, and tips on how avoid them.
[Read more...]

Beware of Google Images: The Ultimate Guide to Finding Free Images Online

free images for blogsImages are everywhere online. But, do you ever think about where they came from or whether you’re even allowed to use them on your blog?

Many people assume the images they find online are free to use on their blog, social media updates and even print materials. I made the same mistake when I started working with local businesses.

After all, using images for your blog posts is a great way to increase reader engagement. Tweet it! The right picture quickly orients your readers to your topic, jump starts social sharing and even helps break up long blocks of text.

But, finding the right image can be a challenge. Sites like Twitter, Instagram and even Google Image Search provide an endless stream of seemingly “free” images.
[Read more...]