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Money Management Tips for Entrepreneurs – 5 Keys to Getting It Right and Keeping More of It!

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MONEY – it’s a word that strikes fear in the hearts of many, however it doesn’t have to be that way!

 

Even worse than the word money is the word BUDGET. That’s like the swear word of money. I prefer “savings and spending plan” – it feels like money is flowing vs. being restricted!

 

In working with small business owners to help them with their finances, I’ve learned 5 key steps to start creating financial stability in both your personal and business lives. I firmly believe that one of the universal principles of money is that once you demonstrate that you can manage the money you have, that you’ll be able to attract MORE MONEY. And who doesn’t want more money?!?!?

 

Here are the 5 key steps to start building financial stability in your life and business:

Step #1: Separate your personal and business finances

Picture a visual in your mind with a “financial fence” between two houses. The house on the left is your personal financial “house,” and on the right is your business financial “house.” The fence is short enough to be able to stand on your tiptoes to talk with and coordinate with your neighbor.

 

Why should you care about this visual? If there’s no separation between your personal and business finances, you’ll never truly be able to understand how profitable (or unprofitable) your business is. And profitability is key to being able to make smart decisions about your business and to understanding the success of your business.

 

This essentially means separate bank accounts for your personal and business finances so that you can track financial activity separately.

 

Step #2: Know your personal needs

It is critical for small business owners to know the monthly cash flow needs of their personal lifestyles so that they can build their businesses to support that lifestyle. Start with understanding the monthly amount that you need to pay the bills, to eat, and to have some fun in your life (your lifestyle expenses). This information will help you start to understand how you want (and need) your business to perform.

 

Step #3: Know your business needs

Now it’s time to understand the monthly needs of your business. The main piece of information you’ll want to get a solid handle on is what your fixed costs are. Fixed costs are just a fancy way of describing the costs that you’re incurring each month (i.e. costs for your email marketing service, rent (if applicable), medical insurance, etc). Determine what types of fixed costs you have and add up the total amount.

 

Then, if you take the monthly personal amount that you need (Step #2) and add on the monthly business amount, you’ll have a solid monthly revenue target to aim for in your business to cover your costs. (Note: This does not factor in the need to pay taxes on your business profit. If you want to go the extra mile for taxes, increase the total revenue target by another 30% to be conservative.)

 

Step #4: Pay yourself regularly

As business owners, we dream about positive change and transforming lives with our solutions. So we deserve to be rewarded for that, right?

 

I see many business owners forgetting to pay themselves regularly, or perhaps even at all. And while I can understand that when starting a business that there are sometimes more expenses than there is cash, it’s also important to give yourself some type of paycheck to recognize the value of your work.

 

My best advice if you’re not currently paying yourself regularly is to just start with a small paycheck. It’s not necessarily about the amount of the paycheck (at least at first), it’s more about the habit of paying yourself regularly. Every Friday I’m looking to give myself a paycheck, even if the amount varies weekly.

 

Step #5: Develop a financial routine

Financial matters can take up energy and require some thought, so it’s important to make sure you schedule regular time to handle your finances so something doesn’t slip through the cracks.

 

My #1 secret weapon with my clients is to schedule a weekly “money date.” Pick one regular time each week where you’ll commit to addressing money matters – paying bills, invoicing clients, reviewing your bills and any statements for errors (trust me, it happens more often than you’d think it does!), etc.. It’s amazing how much calmer you’ll feel about your finances when you know you’ve got time scheduled to address anything that you need to.

 

That’s it – just 5 simple steps to getting started on a life of financial independence! Just one step that you take today can empower you to start moving toward a life of financial freedom and stability so that you can attract more cash and abundance into your life. So what step will you take today?

Top 10 Online Systems To Sky Rocket Your Revenue for Solopreneurs

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Are you feeling overwhelmed with all the decisions you need to make in building your business online? Confused at which programs and tools to use when it come to building your list, promoting your services and getting the message out there? Wouldn’t it be once if getting all the right pieces together were easy?

 

I know it’s a lot to learn in one gulp ~ getting your business online means international exposure however it can be daunting to say the least with so many options to chose from. The key to sky rocketing your revenue means getting more visibility and I guarantee you can find oodles and oodles of your ideal clients online, the only question is…how?

 

By using systems of course… the more systems you implement in your business the easier and less time consuming finding clients will be. The question is WHICH platforms are the best to use?

 

Don’t let overwhelm prevent you from using the right tools and systems to get your business in front of the millions of online users and potential clients. If you want to save yourself the time and hassle of learning which systems to use look no further. I’ve put together my top 10 list of online systems to help you sky rocket your revenue – the exact same systems I use or have used in my business, have personally tested and recommend my clients use as well. It doesn’t have to be dizzying. Getting your systems together can be quite painless, here’s how.

Ready?

 

1 – Stay in Touch Marketing

If you’re in business you need to be implementing some kind of stay in touch marketing system to stay in front of your ideal clients and continue delivering great content, specials, promotions. Remember not everyone will instantly be ready to become one of your paying clients however if you stay in the loop with a stay in touch marketing plan you up your odd dramatically. If you aren’t top of mind when your clients are ready to say yes – they’ll say yes to someone who is top of mind. If you want to be that person here are the different auto responders and other useful tools I use to stay in touch.

Awebber: Autorespnder company to help you build your email subscriber list – it’s who I use – reliable, easy, and affordable. Free 30 day trial. (Affiliate)
MailChimp: Autoresponder company – if I were to get started from scratch again I would go with these guys – they have awesome newsletter templates and a free version! (Affiliate)
InfusionSoft: The King of autoresponders with built in shopping carts, bells and whistles the whole 9 yards. This is for a much more targeted and robust marketing system. (Affiliate)

Another very popular service provider that I love working with is www.sendoutcards.com – this company lets you send out personalized greeting cards to your clients. A great way to stay in touch for birthdays, holidays and send promotional cards or postcards as well.

 

2- Managing Your Social Media Visibility

You know your business needs visibility however managing all of your Facebook posts and tweets can easily become VERY time consuming and overwhelming. Here’s one of my favourite programs to help you save time
www.Hootsuite.com lets you post to multiple sites and also allows you to schedule your posts in the future. Very useful! Free and paid versions available.

 

3- Payment Processing Systems

The most important system of all – accepting money! There are several options out there – how you accept money depends on the country you are in and your business needs. If you’re just getting started Paypal is a great option – here are some other good ones

Paypal.com there is a free version, business version and also a paid monthly verso called “Virtual Terminal” that allows you to process credit cards very useful
Moneris.com this one is very popular in Canada.

 

4- Website + Hosting

My clients are always asking what’s the deal with blogging? Should I get a free blog a paid blog, what gives? I suggest as soon as possible you want to get your own URL a domain name and get onto a paid WordPress platform (wordpress has a free version a wordpress.org). With a paid version you can control so much more of your design and practicable usability, add widgets easily, the sky’s the limit – it’s worth it to invest in a paid domain and host your own wordpress site because you’ll invest so much time farting around and trying to figure out the free blogging platforms that in the end you’ll want to thrown it the towel! Getting a wordpress.com platform will save you time and energy to do it right the first time around.

Wordress.com:
WordPress Thesis Theme. My favorite theme! Includes SEO & customization features (Affiliate)
1and1: To buy domain names – they often have .99cent deals, web hosting they have it all! (Affiliate)

 

5- Sales page & Opt in Page Easy Templates

UnBounce.com: A fabulous company that helps you build landing pages, offers split testing and TEACHES you HOW to do it!
Optimize Press: WordPress plugin that makes creating squeeze pages, sales pages and membership pages a breeze! (Affiliate)

 

6- Bridge line Services

If you’re looking to host interviews, host your now group coaching calls or use a conference line to have group meetings on you’ll need a bridge line where you can host multiple callers on.

Instant Teleseminar: Robust teleconferencing line – it’s what I use to host my calls and they also store your audio’s online. This one is great because your callers also have the option to listen in via webcast link for free. (Affiliate)
Free Conference Pro: Bridge line includes control panel, recording, 24/7 access, custom recording, # of callers.
Free Conference call.com: If you’re just starting out this one is great – they now let you record and download MP3 audios of your calls to your computer.
Free Conferencing.com: Another free teleconferencing service which in addition to recording calls also offers call-in capability using SKYPE.

 

7- Email

Gmail: The BEST email for dealing with spam & deliverability. Get an account! With it comes so many wonderful things like tons of storage, a google calendar and access to . Highly recommend getting a Gmail email if you don’t have one yet.

 

8- Tracking

A good way to measure your results is to be able to! With Google Analytics you can get a free account and pop in a simple code into your site, opt in pages, and sales pages so you can track your visitors, find out where your traffic come from. VERY important to know your numbers if you want to improve them.

www.GoogleAnalytics.com

 

9- Survey Your Community

The worst mistake I see so many entrepreneurs making is spending zoo much time creating fancy pants programs and information products without finding out if there’s a market to purchase it first. Survey your community, your list and your clients and find out EXACTLY what problems that have and are looking to solve before you spend any time creating something they might not want. Here’s a fab tool I use often.

SurveyMonkey.com: Free version for up to 10 questions.

 

10- Product Creation & Fulfillment Houses

Creating your first information product can be a great way to add extra passive income to your revenue. Work once and get paid over and over again. You can create audio programs, CDs, DVDs home study courses you name it. You don’t want to be burning CDs yourself or printing your own labels – that’s way to time consuming. Here are two companies that you can outsource your order fulfillment to and they drop ship – meaning you can order online that they will handle the shipment to your client so you never have to touch the merchandise.

Kunaki: CD/DVD printing/duplication company that produces product on demand, taking the orders and delivering for you.
Vervante: On demand publishing for your home study course, cd/dvd products, etc.

 

If you’ve found this list useful you might also find a few more gems on my resources page. Let me know if you come across any other resources you find useful that should be added to the list.

 

To your Love, Expansion & Freedom

3 Ways to Attract More Clients This Year

By | Get More Clients, Sales Attraction, Uncategorized | No Comments

Are you tired of having to count pennies and tally up dollars to be able to say YES to the things you want? Are you ready to play a bigger game this year, attract more clients and make more money? If so then you’re in the right place. Check out these 3 simple ideas for getting your message out there in a bigger way.

 

 

1- Be Visible

 

Get out from hiding behind the computer and go places, networking events and other events where your ideal target audience is hanging out and be willing to be visible this year. It’s all about being visible and you know what they say – showing up is half the battle.

 

When I first started out speaking I started giving workshops to Meet up groups. Great website to check out www.meetup.com – you’ll find tons of groups gathering for different topics ranging from entrepreneurs to women’s empowerment to singles groups, energy therapists you name it you can find it on meet up. And if you can’t find one why not create one and build your own community? The fastest path to attracting more clients this year is to reach out to someone who has a community of your ideal clients and offer to speak, or give a workshop even if it’s for a nominal $20 each or free!

 

Have an offer at the end of your workshop, a chance for your audience to work with you further on a paid basis. Let it be a “low risk- low barrier to entry” meaning a small fee to work with you. You never want to offer some kind of high-end package of say $500 or $1000 right off the get go out of a free 1 hour talk.

 

Offer your audience a compelling offer, of say $57 – $97 something they can easily say yes to on the spot. Maybe it’s a chance to speak with you live on the phone, some kind of consulting mixed with a free report, book, audio interview package. Make up a compelling offer and let the offer be available for only today – once you leave the room the offer is over. Like this you can build your business, share your message and grow your coaching, consulting, serviced based business.

 

2 – Give Yourself Permission to Make Mistakes & Stop Comparing Yourself to Others

 

I was working with a client this week sussing out her marketing materials and designing her offer for her workshop when she objected by telling me “I just can’t picture myself in front of the room – I’m waaayyy more comfortable being the student – even through I’ve been wanting to inspire and teach people secretly for years”.

 

One of the objections I hear most often come out of my clients mouths when I mention hosting a local workshop or speaking to get more visibility is  “I don’t feel like I have it all figured out yet – how can I teach I’m not ready yet” and this one comes from self-judgment right. You compare yourself to others, and when you do, you always fall short. It’s the nature of the EGO, to protect you with fear.

 

A good friend of mine this weekend was sharing that she’s had a radical shift in thinking she said to me “Vanessa, being in the fear is the safest place to be.” …Hmmm spoken like a true evangelist. That’s what you are as an entrepreneur you’ve got to breakthrough all of the mindset pieces, irrational fears and self doubt that wants to keep you playing small and just get your work out there in the world. Kind of like being an evangelist for your message your truth. When you step into the fear versus run from it you realize it doesn’t exist – it’s all just an illusion and then you can move past it and get into action.

 

I told my client who was afraid to start speaking what I tell all my clients who get stuck and paralyzed with fear – that you don’t need to teach, coach, train Obama or Tony Robbins here. Remember to every 3rd grader, a 4th grader is like a God. Be ok with being the 4th grader – and decide to serve the kindergarteners, and 1st graders, 2nd graders and 3rd graders – they need what you’ve got! And there are plenty of them to serve! You don’t have to have a PHD or doctorate degree to help someone. If you compare yourself to others you’ll never get out of the starting gate.

 

In case you’ve been waiting for someone to tell you – I’ll tell you now – you’re good enough! Now get out there! The world needs you.

 

Does this mean you won’t make some mistakes along the way? Hell no – you’re going to make them and that’s called LEARNING. You have to give yourself permission to make a few mistakes along the way to getting it right. So often the fear of self-judgment and the fear or rejection stops us dead in our tracks. I can tell you from experience, I went bankrupt – I didn’t die, I’ve bombed more shows and live product demonstrations to live audiences and publicly humiliated myself more times than I care to remember (I’m talking hundreds here) and I didn’t die, I’ve heard more nos and not yets and rejection than a Jehovah witness knocking door to door – and I didn’t die. You won’t either – promise.  On the contrary you’re going to get closer to getting it right you’re going to LEARN how not to do better the next time but you’ve got to give yourself permission to start. No one else will do that for you and guess what? It’s just a decision.

 

3- Invest in Yourself

 

Any time you have an idea or inkling or a desire it’s because your spirit is knocking and saying “ehmmmm it’s time! This is the next move here – let’s go!” And what we do is stuff it aside, push it away, try and reason with ourselves that it’s not the right time, we don’t know how it will get done, it’s too big for us, and the pressure builds and builds and builds until we can’t take it anymore. Don’t wait – just say yes to yourself this year. Say yes to the next opportunity that comes your way to help you build your vision. If it’s a coaching program to get your book finally written, a website dude to update your site, hiring that virtual assistant to help you free up more time so you can go to the gym and take care of yourself – say YES! There’s no point in resisting any of it because you’re creating it all anyways.

 

Don’t wait until you have the money, have the time, or are ready – you’ll never be. You commit – you say yes and move forward and everything follows suit. Everything gets taken care of when you honor that inner knocking – that’s spirit saying “ehemm….it’s time”. Listen to it – I guarantee you it will move you to serving more people this year and attracting more clients and making more money …. and YES it will be a bit scary. So get help, invest in yourself, in a mentor a coach a program to help you. If you were meant to do it all by yourself there wouldn’t be 6 billion people in the world.

 

And now I’m getting off my soapbox 🙂 I hope this post has been inspiring and helps you to move forward this year and serve more people with your brilliance.

 

If not now…when?

 

To Your Love, Expansion & Freedom

Goal Getting 101: How to LET GO of Last Years Junk to Make Space for Something New

By | Full Power Growth, Inspiration, Master Your Mindset, Uncategorized | No Comments

Are you tired of this happening to you every new year? You make goals and intentions with every ounce of certainly that you will make a change come hell or high water – and then slowly you lose steam, things get too hard, you cave in: you fall short of the diet, cheat on getting your newsletter out on time, spend too much on clothes instead on investments because of a great sale and blow your budget, date the wrong guy for like the hundredth time when you know deep down it’s not going anywhere… Sometimes even just making new goals feels like a big stretch because it brings back all the painful memories of all the goals and all the things you DIDN’T accomplish like you wanted to years prior. It’s like your confidence takes another hit every goal you envision because a part of you is wondering “Am I really able to do that? – Who am I kidding?” The fear starts to creep in slowly, self doubt has you guessing if you made the right decisions, maybe you should be going after something else, something LESS grandiose, something more REALISTIC (gotta love that world!) right?

 

Well I’m here to tell you that achieving your goals without all the hoopla and intimidating self talk is not only possible, it is very doable if you have the right tool and the right recipe. Making your goals and intentions come true is like baking cake – you need the right ingredients in the right order otherwise the cake may not rise or it might taste a bit funky.

 

A Critical Ingredient for Success…

 

When you fall short on your goals and intentions it’s always because of the EGO. Your EGO wants to keep you safe by protecting you with fear, keep you separate and trying to figure everything out so you never really take much action it’s all a bunch of great ideas and “one day I will…” thoughts that bring on more self doubt. Your EGO would have you believe that you are incapable of attaining your goals by comparing you with others who are better than you, more of an expert than you, have more experience than you and on and on it goes. Your friend, the EGO, is always protecting you with FEAR.

 

It’s nearly impossible to detect this foe the EGO because it hides itself trying to protect you. Your EGO is NOT your friend when, after years of toil and struggle you find yourself still procrastinating starting your new business, finally writing that book you’ve been talking about for so long or launching your new website.

 

The reason people fail to accomplish goals is because they try and build a big ass foundation on a sticking festering wound. Let me explain….

 

I see so many people start out the new year with great intentions that fizzle come mid February at best. Why is that, you ask? Because they fail to take into account one critical factor that makes or breaks their success and that is, their emotions.

 

How Your Emotions Sabotage Your Success

 

If you let FEAR get in the way of taking action you’ll never get very far and if you look really closely at why your goals and dreams fizzle out it’s always some kind of fear at the root of it isn’t it? What about that pesky self doubt, always keeps you on your toes – “do I go for this or go for that? I don’t know what I REALLY want to do, what’s my passion” ra ra ra it never ends and you never really take much action. If you don’t have your emotions in check, your emotions are running you! And that’s the problem with 99% of the world. Jealousy, anger, fear, greed, pride and other lower emotions are running some very good and kind hearted people into the ground and robbing them of the peace, love acceptance and sheer JOY of living. A big part of the work that I do with my clients is helping them take their power back from these rampant emotions that are playing them like a puppet.  Here’s how you can make sure your emotions DON’T get the best of you this year so you accomplish your goals with ease.

 

2 Ways to Clear The Decks

 

Write out a list of all the things that happened last year that didn’t go so well or didn’t go how you had anticipated. Relationships that ended abruptly or without explanation, the fight you had with your sister that still keeps distance between you, your car that broke down on a really important day. I want you to make a list of all the *** SHIT*** things that happened to you last year. Then once you have your list, go down through each mention and forgive either the person, or yourself if appropriate and most importantly, send them love. Here’s a link to a fabulous forgiveness process that I’ve helped many of my clients with.

 

You may think this is weird but if you don’t release the past – it comes back to scratch you until you finally decide to take care of it because your reality is only an out projecting of what you are holding in your mind. Your programs and beliefs store all of that energy in your field. Letting go of this stored up, pent up energy is the way to create space for something new. You can’t fill a glass that is already full, right?

 

When you LET GO you’re not trying to build a big grandiose new thing on top of an old festering wound or emotional pothole – by letting go and forgiving yourself and others you’re saying “I’m ready for something new” you let go of holding onto the need to be right versus happy.

 

I recently heard something fabulous that stuck in my brain about how lower vibrations and emotions like anger, rage, fear and loathing also want expression. Mostly what we do when we are faced with unwanted or negative emotions is push them down, stuff them, eat, smoke, drink, or sex them away but they don’t really go away they just keep repeating themselves as patters in your life over and over again like bad re-runs of 3’s company or something.

 

You can CHOSE…

 

You can CHOSE to let go of the emotions so that they don’t haunt you anymore. Here’s a great resource I use daily “The Release Technique”– here’s an audio link to an interview I did with one of the founders of the program last year. I think EVERYONE on the planet can benefit from learning the technique. It is the a-z roadmap for how to dismantle and love your EGO away. Brilliant – I highly recommend it if you’re really ready to let go of what’s been holding you back from making lasting, and meaningful change in your life AND to help you let go of any internal resistance you have to taking action on your goals.

 

And here is one final question for you to help you ease out of any resistance that might be pulling you down. “Would it be ok for you right now if you made the decision to be happy with your life exactly as it is right now, without wanting to change it in any way? Would that be ok?” If your answer is NO – then you’ve got some resistance working against you. Wanting and desire create resistance – whenever you are wanting something you are telling the Universe that you DON’T already have it – you are instructing the Universe to send you more of the lack and wanting. When you let go of wanting you move into having and you move into BEINGNESS – the present moment where you are free to listen to your intuition and guidance, free to take action is that’s fitting or free to take a nap if you’re tired.

 

May 2013 be the year you connect with all of the love, abundance, expansion and JOY that is already there waiting for you to unwrap.

 

To Your Love, Expansion & Freedom