We’ve talked about getting started online, creating a digital income source, and have identified several obstacles entrepreneurs face.  Check out these blog posts for more: Here, “2 Reasons”,  and this one (“Can I Make Money Online?”), and here (How Hard Is It To Start My Own Business?)


Today I want to look deeper, at what’s inside, what you control about your online journey.

There are books and videos that will teach us (if we take the time) how to do the technical pieces of registering a business entity, set up tax structures to keep the most income, help us build a list, drive traffic to that list or to an offer to build a list of potential buyers, and so on.  


But the one thing these tools can’t do is personalize your outreach for you.

Connecting with your buyers means thinking about what makes YOU unique. That's what makes your story! Click To Tweet


This is a useful activity as you’ll use your story in many different ways.

Is this a grey area for you?  Or have your tried to create a compelling story only to get tangled up?

I’ve gotten so many questions on this that I am creating a course specifically to teach this start to finish- today we’ll take a high level view that should get you well on your way.

Too often entrepreneurs blindly follow the guides that offer “swipe” mail templates, pre-designed pages and send it off, never adding any personal touches at all.

That’s a huge red flag to buyers! (Hopefully you’re not in that situation!) It isn’t that those products are bad, it’s that people don’t take the time to personalize them for their specific niche or circumstance.


So let’s talk a little about what a story is and why it’s important for you.


Getting Yourself Out There: Dos & Don’ts


When it comes to pulling the trigger on an email campaign for the first time, or doing something new, most of us have felt that momentary case of nerves and adrenaline jitters. 

Having confidence in your story, why you’re doing what you’re doing, comes from knowing your story, what in your background has led you to this point is necessary to carry you through the implementation point.

It’s what compels you to offer this solution to potential buyers experiencing the same issue you did once. You feel their pain and want to help- that’s your why!

Or, at least it should be.

Read this quote below and tell me in the comments how this makes you feel- would you buy from this guy? 

Can you tell from this short question what his focus is? How does his approach make you feel? Even though this is just a question, what can you understand about doing business with him?


Okay, I love the concept of Affiliate Marketing, but for me, though internet and advertising savy, it’s just a concept.

Would love some highly successful affiliate marketing guru to teach me the ropes. Anybody that wants to do something fun, like teach a 53 year old the how to of this fantastic system? I’d be forever greatful : )

I just lost a huge chunck of money with an account that just dropped of the map. Need to put something solid together quickly that’ll pull in at least a grand a week. Anybody up for the task? Thanks,


Ok, what’d you think?


Now, let’s look at another example. 

(Just FYI, This business has been sold and is no longer available for sign ups, though if the video does its job well, you may wish you could!).)  Watch this one and take some notes and tell me what stands out for you on this one.




This video clip of Chris has the story elements that connect well with an audience. He has sincerity, humility, and concern. You feel that Chris is not talking down to you, but sharing a story with you.


Make sense so far?


Sharing You: The Framework of an Effective Story


There are any number of patterns that writers use to craft an effective story, but each method uses a similar, basic framework:

  • A Broken World
  • The Humble Hero
  • The Mentor
  • A Magical Gift


Now before you laugh and say that sounds too froo-froo for you, let’s put it another way:






Better? Does that sound more like you? 


It’s the same concept, but in the second version there is the potential to overlook putting “you” into the mix.  I’ve seen many newbies look at that standard format and make it all about the product, and forget that it’s meant to be about them.  As we discuss this framework, keep in mind that YOU are the secret sauce, not your product.  This is key.


People Don’t Buy Products, They Buy YOU


Think back to Chris’ video. 

Can you identify the broken world (the problem)? 

Right… it’s the people struggling, down on their luck, looking for a way out.


And the Humble Hero (Solution)?  It wasn’t his iPAS system.  It was his heart.
Russel Brunson has often said, “An entrepreneur is someone who takes responsibility for a problem.”  I like that.

You as an entrepreneur see a problem (a broken world) and take ownership of providing a way out, a better life.


Let’s keep going…


In Chris’ video, who or what is the Mentor (Method)?  Were you able to identify the turning point for the Hero?

Sure… the guy who had been where Chris was and had the idea of a system.  Chris took that information, and then integrated it with his vision of helping people.


In my life, I had what I call my Scarlett O’Hara moment (the one where she is on the hill, hungry, and shakes her fist at the sky, saying, “As God is my witness, I’ll never be hungry again!”). 

I was newly divorced, frustrated, feeling powerless being outside the United States and couldn’t get back home. 

Never again!  I decided then and there to make changes and help others avoid that feeling of not being in control of their own lives. It took me 5 years to recover, but step by step through a lot of weird twists and turns, my story has a positive outcome. I survived to tell it and teach you how to thrive as well.


But… What If I Don’t Have a “Moment” To Build On?


Believe it or not, I have had people tell me they’ve had nothing unfortunate happen to them. (Lucky you!) Does that mean they don’t have a story?

Not at all.  Your story doesn’t have to be a rags to riches, or homeless to mansion, ordeal.  It only has to be what motivates you to be in business.  What’s your purpose for starting an online business?

If you’re telling me that the only reason you are in business is because you want to make quick money, good luck! 

Connecting with people is all about caring about them and their issues. If you don’t really care, it will be evident and the bad reviews will mount up quickly.

If you don’t have a turning point moment to build on, think about why you chose the niche you want to build your business in.  Is it a craft you like? Are you a jewelry maker, skin care consultant?  A Realtor?  Do you have a Shopify store selling e-commerce products?

Without a higher purpose, the chances of getting frustrated or bored are pretty steep. 

Think about what it is you want to do for your customers.  Why should they buy from you? 

What separates you from the next guy is your heart, your connection and ability to meet your buyer's need. Click To Tweet


Look back at your journey and see if there is a memory of the moment when you decided to start this kind of business.  You likely had some thought why this and not something else.  Hang on to that thought.


Writing My Own Story: The Process


In writing my story, I thought I didn’t have a Moment.  I have never been on drugs or alcohol, never skipped school, never got into trouble with the law- what could I possibly have to write about?

Where did this passion for helping people come from?


This tip, #5 in the upcoming “Be The Hero You Are Meant To Be” course,  was really helpful in sorting out all the conflicting ideas in my head.


Here’s the process I used to figure it out…


Create a story board or notebook- or use sticky notes to make notes of your memories. 

Starting in your early childhood, think back to memories that stand out for you, ones where you remember learning something or realize that it affected you in some way.  Write each one down in any way you want as long as you can sort them out easily as you work. Sticky notes worked well.

Here’s what came up for me…

I remember:

my dad preferring my little sister and me not knowing why

being punished for not doing the dishes “right” 

having a Saturday job at 13 cleaning house for an older couple- I made $5, and always worried that I wouldn’t do a good enough job

being welcome next door- the first place I felt no judgment

the shame of nearly failing a math class- after being so advanced that they skipped me a grade

being abused


Don’t worry if you remember sad, or bad things. It is often that we are changed by adversity more than cheerfulness. And, don’t feel bad reading my list, there were good things too. I  managed to be outgoing and social- I just kept a lot hidden away. These just shaped me along a different path than I would have had otherwise.

In my case, it was clear that I became a survivor who wanted to help others survive, thrive, and avoid pain. 

I wanted to help others gain confidence and achieve their version of success.  I realized the reason I was so afraid of taking a risk was because I had been punished so harshly for making any kind of mistake.  I wanted others who are shy or worried about making mistakes to learn the ropes and gain confidence.

Six key memories out of a lifetime aren’t much, but from these I saw a pattern,  enough for me to see where my “Broken World” was and to understand that I had come out of all that with a mission to teach others what I had learned.

I sorted memories into categories as you’ll see in the workbook.  For me, things I learned fell into rough categories of family, failings and successes, influencers in my life, and other strong reactions that left a mark (never again, and repeat this often)

Looking back I also recalled:

My Grandmothers were both writers- which meant words were important

Plays I put on with neighborhood kids for our families

Creating make-believe “stores” by collecting cans and empty food/cereal boxes

Going to summer camp in the mountains- working with my team to win points

I led games and taught other kids how to do things (apparently I  was smart and bossy as a kid)

At age 12, being in charge of buying groceries and preparing dinner each night after my mom and dad divorced


From those memories I saw that I had early leadership potential, organizational skills, vision and drive.

There were patterns I can continue to see at different points in my life.


So how does this create a story?


From these sticky notes on my board, I could see my broken world. 

I could understand my passion for helping others avoid the pain I felt, I had a couple of mentors who showed me that I could do things well, and this all added up to…


The magical gift (offer)…


It took a while to be able to distill this down to the take away.  If I had had this process laid out first, I think it would have been more easily apparent. But dealing with both the process, going through the memories, and with figuring out what it all meant at the same time took a little more effort.


Now though it is clear that the gift was understanding I was here to help others who lack confidence.  I have always felt my talent was in being an encourager, but never knew how or in what way I could use that. Now it makes sense.

Once I had gone through this process, and identified the memories that shaped me, I gained confidence that this was something I was capable of doing, and even more clear, that I had a way of making a difference for others.


Take a look at my About page here on Strategy Links/About.  Can you see this story in that text?  It’s always been about helping those who aren’t able to succeed alone.


Now It’s Your Turn…


"Be The Hero You Are Meant To Be" course workbook image


Download the workbook and learn how to write a compelling story to use in your Bios, About pages, use snippets in emails, blogs, and more.


Using this framework ensures your story will be consistent across the board, building more authority for you as people read and learn about you!  


Good Luck!  Let me know how it goes, and especially if you have any questions or issues downloading the workbook…





2 reasons Nebiews Struggle to Make Money Online image of gold miner with gold

94% of Newbies Struggle to Make Money Online!



The gold mine question is:  why?


To answer that, let me start with My Least Favorite Word.  

This may sound silly, but my least favorite word is “just”…


As in,   “all you have to do “just” take massive action…

Or,    Just fake it till you make it”…


Come on, really? I thought we were past all that!


What I dislike about this word just is the way it makes newbies feel small or that we are somehow lacking because it seems sooo obvious to everyone else!.


If we all grew up knowing how to take “massive action” on any given idea, we would have a much different world.  But we don’t. We don’t all know how to get started easily. Some people struggle because they are shy, and some others may have missed that day in school.


I know that’s how it was for me… literally! 


When I was in the 7th grade, the school skipped me to 9th grade math. I was so lost, I went from making A’s to D’s. My confidence sank lower than the bottom of the pothole that plagued our parking lot.  


I survived and got through it, but as an adult I actually had to go out and buy an arithmetic primer on basic fractions and converting percentages. It was part of what I missed when I skipped that grade. I felt stupid, and always felt I had to hide my struggle from others. I was determined to teach myself what I didn’t know-  I was embarrassed not to know how to do this. And it didn’t help when friends said, “Oh, that’s easy, you just…” Ugh!


So you see, I have a soft spot for new entrepreneurs who join a network marketing program (maybe a $1 trial, maybe a $29.95 monthly fee), and then cannot seem to get started. I know how that feels. That’s why I dislike uplines teaching their people and others, and falling back on  cliches that start with, “You just…”


Did you know that statistics say 94% of network marketers will not ever make more than $900 before they finally quit? 


Do you know WHY this is?  


You’ve no doubt seen the ones who get plugged in and have all the pieces in place, take off;


While the ones who can’t “just”  figure the puzzle out before they burnout, they fizzle out and quit, leaving their investment behind, in someone else’s wallet. These programs assume everyone learns the same way.


Have you ever been (or are you now, today,) in this situation?  Where you want to get started but can’t figure out where to start? And you frustrated listen to the Saturday morning calls where leaders tell you to “just take massive action; just do it!”


(By now you’ve figured out that I’m not a big fan of that approach!)


That’s why I put together this (free) “6 Steps to $6 Figures” e-book (that I hope you have downloaded by now). And that’s the idea behind my StrategyLinks.net website… trying to help wannabe entrepreneurs learn to make money online.



The problem of making money online consistently boils down to two basic reasons … “just” two.

#1: We either don’t have the right information, meaning we don’t know the right people and have the right product or services;  OR

#2: We don’t believe we have what it takes to compete.


The good news is, each of these issues is fixable. 


These are the two paths to succeed… 

 1. )  If you have that confident mindset, that natural way with people, you can sell anything.
… We succeed because we know that success is just around that next corner, and we don’t give up.


2. )  If you know for certain you have the right product or service, and know the people who need it.

If you believe this is a fact, even if you are not totally confident in yourself, you can still succeed when you believe that some combination greater than your understanding says it is right.


This is why we see people we cannot imagine how in the world they are this successful doing the things we wish we could do.

This is also why we see others who start with us out working us, winning when we haven’t even figured out step one.  They either believe in the product/service or they believe in themselves.


What has to change for this to be you too?


  • Belief in yourself is a process.

You’ve no doubt known people who have read something like Napolean Hill’s book, “Think & Grow Rich” and have gone on to tell what a great difference it has made in their life. 

There are many tools to improve your mindset if you feel unsure of yourself,  tools like our Inner Circle audios and others on the free audio resources page as well as products you can purchase in the StrategyLinks store. It’s like me going out and buying that basic math book! 

One thing I wish I had had is a tutor or a mentor. Today we have coaching services that offer guidance and support as you step through your marketing processes.  Let me know if you think that would be helpful to you.

  • Gain confidence in your product or service

The other issue, feeling sure you have the right product or service, and knowing who needs it, can be overcome by making sure you know:

—  what business you want to have (what kind, how it will work, will it be online or offline, etc);

—  making sure you know who your target audience is (completing the persona or avatar worksheet with all the details to help you know this audience); and finally,

—  doing your market research to ensure the market is large enough to support you and that you know what keys unlock the access to this audience.


I have a free mindmap to help you answer some of these questions if you are hesitatant still.  Check this product out in the store- it ‘s free to download and I think it will be helpful to you.


Remember that there are resources here to help you overcome the “just” too hard issues, or the indecision that may be holding you back.  (In the event that you’re flying along, leave me a comment and let me know what has been the biggest secret to your success!  It’s great to share the knowledge!)


So, 2 reasons newbies struggle to make money online? Self-Confidence and Information assurance.  Tackle these 2 hot issues and you’ll find that the online marketing world begins to open up for you.

How do you tackle them? 

My suggestions: 

 1.   Download the (free) 6 Steps guide if you haven’t already. β‡’ Learn the exact steps to take in the exact order.

2.   Download the mindmap I mentioned above- also free!  β‡’ Understand how the pieces  all fit together

3.   Watch the video with my friend Jon Ochs here.   β‡’ Jon talks about the action, the mindset, and motivation to keep going.


Those steps, if you’re serious about creating a business, will set you on the right path and teach you so much more than you know right now! (And none of them will cost you a cent!)

Do leave me a comment below and let me know if this is meeting your need…  or, if you have a question in a different area altogether!  I am here to help you shine!



Image of Hurricane Harvey Flood Houston Texas August 2017

#HurricaneHarvey Disaster Aftermath, Houston Texas August 2017


How To Survive A Disaster…
& Keep Your Home Business Running


You’d have to be living in a cave or under a rock not to know that the summer of 2017 has been challenging for many in the US.  

This is going to affect multiple millions of people, not just in the US but globally, and it will for a long time to come.

This is also the anniversary of 9-11… I don’t know anyone who hasn’t got a memory connected with that tragedy.

So all in all, a good time to talk about how to keep your business up and running when you have to evacuate or are faced with disaster.

We’ve touched on how to start an online business, and whether you can make money doing it. But today I want to talk about how you can survive, what you can do to keep your business running in the face of disaster- what you need to think about ahead of time, and when you are affected by disaster.

After all, if there is no computer, there is no way for your business to operate when the power and internet are restored.  What can we do to prepare and survive to see another day with our families?

I’m a Texan-in-exile (as I put it)- I’m from Houston, my family has been in Texas for nearly 150 years, so our roots go back a ways.  

My daughter is carrying on the family tradition in Houston, having completed her undergrad university, grad school, residencies, and post-doc fellowships around the country, she is now back in Houston as a geriatric neuropsychologist, working with Alzheimer patients.  So we talk about a lot of “What if…” questions. How to prepare for disasters, especially if you have older loved ones to care for as well.

#HurricaneHarvey and #HurricaneIrma have tested our “what if” scenarios, and allowed me to refine some lessons I’ve lived to tell about into this checklist that will help you survive disaster in general and keep your business going.

For those of you who aren’t familiar with my background, I’m here in Washington, DC right now and have worked with Homeland Security, FEMA, and the Defense department prior to setting up my own business, Strategy Links, almost 9 years ago.  IN 2008 I started a blog about my work overseas when the former Soviet Union collapsed – I was there from 1996-2005 (WhatTheWorldTaughtMe.com). More recently I built a network marketing team with affiliate system that just last month went belly up.  So, yeah, #^%$t happens!

I’ve known my share of disaster.  And I know how it can touch each of us in some way.

My goal is to help you prepare, even if you’re not convinced you need help… yet!

True story from last week: 
My aunt & uncle flew from California INTO Florida last week to visit friends- friends who said,  “Oh, these storms never hit the Gulf side of Florida…” – the friends who live just south of Tampa!  “Hasn’t happened since 1921…” they said.  But it happened yesterday in 2017.  Ok then…


What Do You Need To Know? Why Is This Important?

You’ve been working hard to get your business set up and to get it running.  You depend on regular content to get the traffic that will be your fans and purchase your products or sign up for your system, plan or program, right?

When the time comes to board up windows or shelter in a hotel or school, how do you keep your content posting and getting viewers who may be unaffected in Michigan, or sleepless in Seattle? πŸ˜‰

I went back through all my experiences with earthquakes and fires in California, political unrest in Baku, the derecho in DC, “Snowmaggedon/Snowzilla” plus my time with FEMA and more to make this checklist of important steps to take before, during, and after a disaster to make your life a little easier- or at least to avoid adding one more headache on top of all those about to happen!



Now, keep in mind, this checklist is not exhaustive, nor should it replace local authorities directions for you and your family.  First things first. Let’s just get that out of the way.


But, assuming someday you need to evacuate, make plans to shelter elsewhere, or some other action that will take you out of your normal home business in a hurry or under stress, I want you to have this plan set up before that day comes. Like I say, I’ve been there in floods, fires, earthquakes, and political unrest overseas. You do need to plan ahead for these events because sometimes you’re given very little warning – like  this time... (https://whattheworldtaughtme.com/2013/09/09/ex-pat-living-how-do-you-survive-life-in-a-war-zone/)


With all the situations just this past 30 days, you can see why it is important to your family that you think about how to continue your source of income coming in while disaster swirls around you.  This may sound callous, but if you went into a home business for any reason other than to have fun and meet people, protecting your income could quite literally be a lifesaver.

So here is what I would advise… I’ve laid this out in 3 columns: Pre-, During-, and Post-Disaster Preparations in a Checklist with a column to check of when the action is done.

Download the whole Checklist  here (.pdf)        


 And, as always, please ask your questions in the comment section at the end and share this with your friends and family.  Also, if you’ve just gone through a disaster and have a tip that worked for you, or have learned a lesson for next time, please share your hard-earned wisdom here!  We can all learn something for the future… Glad you’re here!


Disaster Prep Checklist 2017 image of Disaster_Prep_Checklist_Page_1


  I hope this gets you thinking about what to plan for ahead of the next event.  You know what they say these days: “Disasters are like buses-  there’ll be another one along in a few minutes!” 


Be safe, and be prepared! Your family and your business need you!





Can I Make Money Online?


You’ve probably seen the disclaimer pages that online networks are (must be) posting about their ability to generate income for members online. Hopefully you’ve read them carefully as well.

In this post, I’m going to share with you ways to structure your online business to avoid getting to the point where you have to ask, “Why Am I Not Making Money Online?”

We’ll get to that in a moment.  

The first question every new entrepreneur wants to know is, “Can I make money in an online or digital business?”

If you’ve read those Income Disclosure (or Disclaimer) pages, then you know that the odds are not in favor of the little guy. I looked up a bunch of pages and jotted down their statistics for you to help tell this story accurately and honestly… and then tell you what to do about it!  So hang in there to the end – it does get better!

Can I Make Money? Yes.  
—-> Will I Make Money… Maybe?

Ok, that’s kind of a good news, bad news headline there.  And it is what leads some people to think that online business is a scam, or a pyramid scheme of some kind.  It’s easy to see why that notion gets tossed out there- if only a handful of people become superstars, that’s not very attractive.

But here’s the real story…

Let’s take a look at information from several real companies- and I am not here to name and shame any of them, I just want you to know these statistics come from real companies whose information I got from just Googling  “Network Marketing Income Disclosure pages”.

Company N listed just under 25,000 in total distributors or IBOs (Independent Business Operators). Of those 17% never made any money at all. 81% made less than $2,500. And altogether, fully 90% made $0-$5K.

Not very promising for sure.  So you can see why people get nervous and wonder if they really can make money online.  This is a lot like “The Hunger Games” where the leader always says, “May the odds be ever in your favor!” knowing full well that they aren’t and actually can’t be.

Here’s why.

The entry to Company N is listed at around $100 for the first kit. But reviews show that to really have a chance to make big enough commission checks, the actual start-up should be at the $500-$1000 level.  Then there is the monthly auto-ship of products.  

This base is what supports those who do hustle and make sales.  If everybody made $1,000 per month, think about how much everyone would have to put in to cover that… right?  So you know that, like life insurance, the odds are calculated that some will get pay outs while most will continue to pay in to the system.  Your job as a marketer is to make sure you are in the group that gets the pay out- harsh as that may sound.

So that’s the dark side of network marketing.  That’s why everyone tells you that it is a mindset shift.  You cannot be soft, and wonder how moral it is for all to pay so some can win.  It is a numbers game, pure and simple.

Now before too many of you stop reading here, horrified that network marketing sounds like a hard place to be, let me stop and give you some of the up side- and there really is a lot of good here.

First, if anyone goes into network marketing for the money, they will end up as part of those statistics above very soon.  One of 2 things will happen.  Either they succumb to SOS (Shiny Object Syndrome) or they get frustrated and quit.  This is not a business to start in hopes of making a quick buck or two.

People who only focus on the money potential forget the self-improvement benefits from the products you sell (I hope you are selling products you actually love and use yourself!) and the often overlooked tax breaks (at least in the US).

The first year I formalized my business, Strategy Links LLC, I made about $1,369.  I bought products in my network marketing group and outside products I knew I wanted to resell (like the ones I have in our web store today).  I bought things with a plan in mind- I knew who I wanted to help and what products I would need. And because of that I was able to build a tidy income tax deduction.  (Win-Win!) Now, I do need to clarify how that worked so that no one goes away thinking that Uncle Sam is giving away free money… we all know nothing could be further from the truth in that respect.

But… my husband is retired and I still worked full-time.  I was paying taxes that I had no reason to hope I would get back.  But, by planning in advance, and taking full advantage of what the tax rules said I could do (remember, my network marketing group had suggested having a bookkeeping & tax service on Day 1), I was able to deduct the full cost of the tax service ($34.95 per month and $395 for the personal and business tax prep/filing, as well as the costs of training, conferences, home office expenses, bank fees (remember I set up a business account early, once I started getting commission payouts), credit card fees, educational materials, taxes I paid for my business license and so on.  I generated expenses that first year, and as part of a building strategy, I was able to save money in other areas. (If you aren’t paying big tax payments, ask your tax advisor how to adjust your expenses to find other ways to take deductions or legally offset income.)

We went from expecting to pay a huge tax bill with our return that year, to getting a healthy refund.  Because of smart advance planning.  And because of a network marketing business that was being set up to grow smartly. I am grateful our network company thoughtfully recommended professional advice on the day I signed up!

Take-Away For You, part 1

1Set up your business as a real business from Day 1.  

How?  a) Have the right Mindset. It forces you to take this business seriously, not to do it haphazardly just when you feel like it. Don’t go into business thinking it’s a way to make money from your hobby.  You have to think of your hobby as a money-making enterprise that keeps business hours and does business things.

And b) By setting up a bank account and tax service, you tell yourself that you are committed to spend money that may not come back the first year. You are investing in YOU, Inc.- you may get back some of it on a tax refund, but even if not, are you in this for the long haul or not? If not, you’ll find yourself in the statistic above- part of the majority who never make any real money at all.  Don’t be that guy -or gal! 

You are investing in YOU, Inc. Are you in this for the long haul or not? Click To Tweet

2. .Have a growth mindset from Day 1

Why? What you know today is likely all from your network leaders. You’re a follower.  To make any real money you need to take responsibility and become the leader of YOU, Inc. And you can. It may seem scary or confusing at first, but you can do this. You’ll learn something, Do it, then Teach it to others- soon it becomes natural. 

My network group has products that teach business skills, personal development skills, and life coaching skills.  I read, watch, and listen, then use it to enhance my marketing abilities.  But even if it were health & beauty, or nutritional products, it would be the same. I would study the literature about each product and become an expert on it.  I want to lead my customers, to be their go-to source, not turn them over  to someone else to answer questions.  This is my business.  I depend on me- not any outside source I don’t control. I grow as an expert each year, and gain more influence in the market place and on social media.  It’s a growth mindset.


How Can I Make Money Online?
—->Add Revenue Streams!

Up to now we have focused on network marketing groups, mainly because they are the biggest draws for people who want additional income or a new “lifestyle.”  For many the promise of a turn-key business system is like buying a franchise- something of known quality with a ready-made structure.

But aren’t there other ways to make money?

Yes, as I mentioned in my earlier blog and in the mind map I posted last week, you can also sell products as an affiliate (with, or without, a networking group) or perform a service (think, web design or coaching). You can also create products for others to sell, for example if you are a writer or product maker (like jewelry).  You can do each of these things as a stand alone business and create multiple businesses, or do many things within one business, much like a singer-songwriter may write songs for others or may record his own songs- you can set up a business based on one or many streams of income.

So, we know that the odds are stacked high against making a lot of money in network marketing, but that doesn’t mean you can’t or won’t. It means you have to be smarter than 90% of others in the group. With additional revenue streams, you will also need hustle- you can’t be lazy and just “hit it a lick”  when you want to, as my dad used to say.  Most entrepreneurs work harder at their businesses than they did at their full-time jobs. Getting the sales coming is tough, and then keeping them coming requires attention too. Push-button ease and passive automatic income is a marketing myth for most people. It takes a lot of work to make it look easy!  You can build toward a repeatable system that CAN be outsourced once you get your processes figured out.

I’ll say this again: Anyone who goes into business for a quick buck should think again.  The bucks don’t often come quick, and are not guaranteed at all.  And the temptation to jump from one group or biz opp to another, buying one sure-thing product after another can’t-miss product is huge… yuuuge! (I’m doing the hand gestures… yuuge!) Lol!

Shiny Object Syndrome is very real and will get you so distracted you won’t remember what you started out to do.  Everyone else will have your money and you may become deeply in debt.  It happens to even the most talented and ambitious. Don’t feel bad, just be forewarned to watch out for loose purse strings!

Frustration and drop out/burnout is high among non-lead dogs. And why not? If you are part of a pack, back in the back,it’s like the old saying goes, If you’re aren’t the lead dog, the scenery never changes.  Think about it- you’re going to be running miles and miles looking at someone else’s tail. Or worse… πŸ˜‰

So how do you  (a) guard against burnout, frustration, SOS debt? and (b) guarantee that you make the money the upper 5%, 10% or even down to the 20% make.  Not everyone wants to focus on being a million dollar earner, but it would be nice to make over $50,000 this year, right?

Take-Away For You, part 2

Use these principles to build your business on that work, no matter what business you choose or what niche you settle into.

1. __Be aware from the beginning that you are building a real thing.
Your business will have a life of its own after a time, so structure it as a real entity.  Set yourself a plan- what do you want to accomplish (beyond your money goals), what do you hope to become in your industry  ( a mentor, a leader, a solid business person, a reputable distributor?), what are your business hours, what is your budget for business expenses (not to exceed $x per week or month, etc.). Whatever system you buy into, treat it as a business you can commit to. Like Yoda said, “Do! or Do not. There is no try!”

2.   Know that you have to invest from the get go.  
You may start a business with no money, but you won’t build a business with no money.  Read, listen, buy better products, buy higher level commissionable products, improve yourself daily- make one change for the better everyday (it is part of your story that attracts others to you), invest in others- help who you can (remember Learn, Do , Teach). Just know, and plan, that you will need to invest to grow.

3.   Be smart about your business.  
Watch what leaders do. Follow what influencers say. Be aware of business trends and prepare for them. Don’t necessarily jump on every platform, but do know what’s out there.  A few years ago Periscope was all the rage, then came Facebook Live, as well as Instagram Stories and SnapChat.  Which ones will have staying power and which ones will fade like MySpace?  My point is, don’t chase anything except your customer.

In hockey, they talk about moving to where the puck “will be,” but in your business you have to be where your customer is.  Let the fads and trends come and go- get on when it makes sense for you, not when you feel pressured to by others.  A year or two ago Snap Chat took the world by storm as influencers like Gary Vaynerchuk touted it from stage.  For me, I let it go by-  it never was a draw because my people are not generally 18 year-olds  (of course, if you’re 18-ish and still reading this, you can stay, you are welcome here too!)

Is There An Ideal Business Model…
To Really Make Money Online?

While everyone is different, and each online group has its own dynamic,  diversification has its advantages.

Some people like building teams, like the guy who brought me into our group. He has since moved on to another biz opp where the money was flowing fast in its first year- he liked that ground floor biz opp attractiveness. I’ve never been a hopper.  When I see what I want I go all in and put down roots.  Almost any biz opp can make you money, even if the company is not the top- if it still has good products and services and cares about you.  Don’t depend on others for your success! Take what you can and find your best way to promote and use it.

Some people like selling, straight up. And they are often great at it!  Think really great waiters in a restaurant. They love their product (food and beverages) and love to see you happy.  Affiliate marketers are like this.  If you can hustle and like that salesy thing, this is for you. The excitement of new product launches can be fun and can make you money, but know that you will also need to continually chase new launches.

Others thrive on offering one-to-one services like coaching, mentoring, tutoring, art creation, writing, web- and graphic-designers.  

What’s the Best Way? The “IDEAL” business model probably combines all these in some shape or fashion so when one is slow another can be clicking along.  Think of an artist selling art online, supplemented by art courses on Udemy, Thinkific, Gumroad, or Teachable, supplemented by art supplies sales fulfilled by Amazon (FBA). It shouldn’t require more than a week to set up this combined approach.  Usually…  For me I did it the hard way (myself) and tinkered with my website till I was so frustrated with it that I almost gave up and chucked it all.  Finally I wised up and gave Fiverr a job and the web person I worked with was a great match and got me back up and running again.  He also fixed my website… Lol!

For me, I have a network marketing group that I pay a monthly subscription fee to, which licenses me to use the products and to sell what I want. In addition I can create courses based on self-help products.  I decided I don’t enjoy the quarterly rallies so I don’t join those, but I do get the live streams so I can stay involved.  And the commissions come in regularly, like clockwork.

I also have my own store on my website where I put all the products I bought with re-sell rights- the ones that teach basic marketing/social media skills and techniques that beginning entrepreneurs need to compete and feel confident.

A third income source is my courses that I have on a teaching site.  Another is a membership site where unlimited products are available for a low monthly fee. Often Members may not want to buy a bunch of products but do like the tutorials online, so this is a great way to meet those needs.

And finally (for now) I also provide a limited number of clients with coaching/mentoring help, one-on-one.

All of these products and services support one goal- the support of  my ideal client becoming a successful online marketer.  To the degree I do my job right, fewer people will be left asking, “Can I Make Money Online?”

To the degree I do my job right as a mentor, fewer people will be left asking, β€œCan I Make Money Online?” Click To Tweet

Thanks for joining me here today. I hope you’ve gotten useful tips and ideas that you can use to further your success and now know the answer to your questions about becoming a more successful entrepreneur!

I’d love to hear your thoughts, and hear your story- why not leave me a comment below?

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Resources used for this post:  (In case you still want more!)  πŸ™‚