There has been a lot of new blogging and marketing coaching member sites launched recently. I have brought news about several of them in the past including Jim Kukrals The Biz Web Coach, Daniel Scoccos Online Profits program, Yaro Staraks Blog Mastermind course and more recently, Gyutae Parks Winners Circle.
Whilst I have posted announcements about the launch of these courses and coaching programs in the past, I have never given my view on the subject or talked about the pros and cons of joining one. So I thought I would do just that for all as I don’t think many bloggers have actually discussed the topic (including myself).
Today I will be talking about what you should be looking for when considering a coaching program though tomorrow I will give my personal view on coaching sites in general and whether I believe they offer value for money.
Blogging & Markting Coaching – A brief Introduction
Every coaching site is different but generally speaking, a coaching site offers one or all of the following :
- Premium content
- 1 on 1 Help from an experienced blogger or marketer
- Access to a a forum where you can get help directly from mentors and other subscribers of the coaching program
Nearly all coaching programs require you to pay a monthly fee though I have seen a few ask for a payment up front instead. Daniel Scocco bucked the trend and organised a team of mentors for his Online Profits course however most coaching programs tend to be developed and managed by just one or two people.
Things to look for in a coaching site
The sales page of a coaching course can be very overwhelming. There’s so much sales talk and promises flying around that it’s difficult to see exactly what is on offer and whether the course offers value for money.
Here are the major factors which I think should influence your decision to join a coaching program :
- How much content will you get access to
Does the coaching program list all the content that subscribers will get in detail or is it a little vague? Many sales pages list the content that you will get after parting with your cash but it is not uncommon to just see a promise of ‘Premium Content’.
Pay attention to what topics are covered in the content area as there is no point paying to learn about something you already have experience with.
- Will there be more content added to the course
Many courses have a great amount of content available to new members though many courses hold content back and release it later to encourage members to keep subscribing. A technique that many member sites use is to create a site with little or no content and then add more content on a weekly basis.
This allows the site to be launched quicker as the owner can invest the funds from new members to get new content written.
- Is it easy to cancel your membership
If you are really unsure about whether to join a coaching program then this will be an important factor in signing up. Many courses offer money back guarantees for those who are not happy to ease any doubts potential customers may have.
At one point in the future you will no longer get any value from the course because you have learned all their is to learn and do not need direct help from mentors anymore. Therefore, you should pay attention to the terms and conditions and see if there is a notice period from cancelling your membership.
- Who developed the course
Nearly all coaching programs are developed by one or two people and these people are selling themselves as much as they are selling the course.
If one of your favourite bloggers or marketers launches a coaching program then you will already know a lot of about who developed the course. If you come across a course from someone who you have no knowledge of you need to do a little more research. Find out how well known they are in their niche. Are they popular, are they influential, are they experienced?
The content contained within the site will likely be written by the person who is launching the site (though no always) and is the person who will be helping you improve as a blogger. Therefore, it is important to both like and respect them in my opinion. I don’t know about you but I would be a little hesitant in joining a course if I didn’t like the owner.
- Will the course run for a set period of time
Many courses only run for a set period of time. I think this is sometimes a good thing as it encourages the subscriber to work harder and get the most out of the program when it’s live. It’s very similar to a standard teaching module or syllabus so the learning curve is very structured, which may suit a lot of you.
If the course does not have an expiry date then I would recommend giving yourself some sort of deadline to read all the content in the program and go over everything before cancelling your membership.
- Will you get help directly from the creator of the course or some sort of mentor
One of the main reasons of joining a coaching program is to get direct access to a top blogger or marketer. Some owners will help new members directly via email, telephone call, messenger or more commonly, via a member only forum. You should find out if joining the program will give you premium support from the creator of the program or a mentor.
The more experienced and influential the blogger or creator, the greater the benefit from getting time with them one on one.
- Is there a limit to the number of people who can go on the course
If the main benefit of joining a program is to get access to the course content then it really doesn’t matter if 5 or 5 hundred people join, as it doesn’t effect what you have paid for.
However, should one of the main benefits of the program be support from the owner then you need to know if there is a limit to the number of members the course will have. You will get much better support from a blogger who has 50 members to help than one who has 500 members to look after. So bear this in mind when considering your coaching program.
- Membership Cost
This will undoubtedly be one of the biggest factors on deciding whether to join a coaching program. In my opinion you should not join any program which is beyond your budget. Joining a coaching program should not hurt your personal income or greatly reduce your online budget.
Value is something which is difficult to quantify. Information which is valuable to one person might not be valuable to another. That being said, if you look at the benefits of joining the course and compare it to the membership cost, you will get an idea of whether the course is of good value to you.
If you are having difficulty advancing your blog or website to the next level and believe that a course will teach you what you need to know then the information contained within the program might be more than the membership cost suggests.
- Look at the alternatives
It’s easy to get excited about joining a coaching program when you find a course that offers everything you are looking for. Though I still think it’s important to take the time to look at the alternatives.
Can the information be found freely on the web? Is the information available in a book? Is there a cheaper/better program available elsewhere?
These are questions you might have wished you asked yourself later on if you don’t do your research!
It doesn’t matter how fantastic a membership program is or how cheap it is if you don’t have the time to read the content and apply the tips and techniques containted within the site.
In order to get any benefit from a blogging or marketing course you need to make the time to sit down and learn the techniques, it’s as simple as that.
As I mentioned previously, the sales page can sometimes be a little too long and occasionally baffling so if you are unsure about anything I encourage you to email the owner of the coaching program and ask them some questions. This can sometimes be a good way to guage how support will be too i.e. if it takes a week for the developers to answer your questions then it doesn’t look like support will be their strongest point.
Take your time and do your research and I’m sure you will make the right decision!
On Monday I will give my personal view on coaching sites and whether they offer value for money. Make sure you don’t miss it 🙂
3 Tips for Bonding with Blogging Influencers
Forget traditional influencer marketing. We want to go deeper.
Bloggers teach influencer marketing from a less genuine space sometimes. Imagine learning how to try to get someone to do something for you. Manipulation marketing. Fear-based marketing. Problems arise; spam folders become your landing spot. I observe a decent percentage of influencer marketing emails in my spam folder because fear-pitches get labeled as spam and become spam, 100% of the time.
What is the solution? Learn how to bond with blogging influencers.
I remember people who befriend me. I admire people who endorse me or promote me. I appreciate people who buy my course or eBooks. I love people who generously help me for months. Guess what? Bonding with established bloggers influences the influencers. I do stuff for dear blogging friends I do not do for anybody else. If a friend sends me a guest post and their writing is tight, I place it. Even if said post spans 1000 words or more – my minimum count is 600 – I place it without hesitating. Friends found my heart. Friends influenced me through kindness and generosity. I am largely putty in their blogging hands.
Instead of trying to manipulate a successful stranger, bond with a friend. Change your approach to influencer marketing. Make friends. Help without asking. In time, blogging bonds form organically. If you practice writing, the world becomes your oyster because influencers take you to new levels of success, without you even asking.
Follow these tips to bond with influencers.
1: Buy a Resource
The best way to bond with an influencer is to get inside their heads.
Influential bloggers had to influence influential bloggers on the way up to become influential. Invest in a resource like my influential blogger eBook to learn how influencers do it. Speak their language. Connect. Take their viewpoint. Learn how to be influential yourself.
When you discover how to be influential through my resource you in essence, learn how to influence, influencers, by bonding with these pros.
2: Spend a Few Months Giving Not Asking
Bloggers I remember, then befriend, spend at least a few months giving and not asking. Someone buys my course, publishes 10 comments on my blog, and retweets my posts 10 or 20 times during a 3 month period. These people pop up on my radar screen because they gave and asked for nothing. Bonds form. Friendships develop.
Retweet fellow bloggers. Help them. Feature fellow bloggers. Open your blog to guest posting. Guest post on other blogs. Comment genuinely on blogs. Buy products.
Ask for nothing, for at least 3-4 months. Allow friendships to form organically. Blogging friends help each other because blogging friends trust each other. Influential bloggers fall into this helping lot too, as you generously serve them, ask for nothing and polish your writing skills. I gained more endorsements from pros by being generous than through any other method. Help influential bloggers. Ask for nothing. Influential bloggers help you without you asking for a darn thing.
3: Never Rush the Process
Some blogger friend requested me on Facebook a few moments ago. I scanned my messages to see his business pitch in the “other” folder. He simply rushed the process of pitching an established blogger. I appreciate the friend request but pitching your business before generously helping me ensures I ignore all future messages. He rushed the process so I let him go.
Perhaps he smartens up and begins helping me generously without asking for anything. After a few months of helping me and asking for nothing, we bond. We become friends. From there, the opportunities are limitless. Even if I do not use his service, if he has skills and a reputable business model I can share his services with my readers.
Good things take some time. Never rush the bonding process.
Allow bonds to form organically to do influencer marketing right.
How Do Blogging and Fitness Relate?
I spend 3 hours daily honing my mental and physical fitness.
In truth, you can and will succeed online following simple fundamentals from a generous, detached energy. No need to be fit to go full time blogging. But if you feel bad because your body feels bad and your mind fears losing it all, have you succeeded? I do not believe so.
I wrote an eBook sharing my daily regimen to explain what many of you readers want to know: how do I do it all? I am no blogging god. I am just human. But I write and connect quite a bit. People wish to know how I wrote 100 plus eBooks in addition to all the other stuff I do while circling the globe. Well, blogging and fitness are 2 peas in a pod for me. Both play a big role if you desiring leveling up and feeling good predominantly as you enjoy the ride.
Blogging and Fitness
Let’s say you wake up on a Monday morning as a full time employee who blogs part time. Feeling terrible and dreading work, why write and publish a post? Too busy. Do it later. Put off the post until tonight. But you feel too tired that night. Repeat this cycle for 3 months. 90 days passed. Still no blog post. Why? You filled your mind with fear and pain. Manifesting as blogging loss, backburnering the post for 3 months indicates fear in mind. Why fear? 100% of the time, fear dominates minds of people who spend zero time on mental fitness, never meditating or doing deep yin yoga or observing their thoughts and feelings. Most of the time, these same folks dominated by their own fears never commit seriously to being physically fit through exercising.
Feel good by caring for your mind and body. Vibe higher than fears crippling most bloggers. Imagine the above scenario with one difference: you devote 1-2 hours daily exercising and raising your energy via mindset training. Devote 30 minutes to power walking and 30 minutes to deep yin yoga. On waking that Monday morning, either a blog post idea finds you and you write the post, or after a few uncomfortable moments and feelings, the idea flows to you and you write the post.
I cannot explain this process logically because it flows 100% emotionally, feelings-wise. Visualize yourself in moments you feel really good. All seems possible. Ideas flow to you. Opportunities flow to you. Why? Feeling good magnetizes you to freeing, success-promoting ideas. Being fit mentally and physically is the easiest way to feel good most of the time. Plus in those moments you feel bad mentally and physically, you face, feel and release the bad feelings, quickly, because you feel mentally and physically fit, predominantly.
Being fit naturally alerts you to the success-promoting idea of gratitude. Gratitude builds blogging success because seeing every penny of income, every blog comment and all interest in your blogging courses feels awesome to you. Feeling awesome inspires you to blog for years generously. Blogging generously for years makes you successful.
Corey at the Good Oil Marketing retweeted my blogging course recently. I feel grateful he spread the word for me considering he is a successful, high level marketer. I feel these feelings and build on my success because I feel grateful. I feel grateful because I trained my mind and body to feel good, through being fit daily, in order to tune into appreciation easily.
Be a successful blogger by being mentally and physically fit.
Why Doing this Works Better than Asking for Business Referrals
After I released my flagship eBook – How to Retire to a Life of Island Hopping through Smart Blogging – I noticed something neat. My sales increased 12 fold the day I published a guest post for a highly successful blogger.
Seeing this spike clued me in to the quickest, easiest way to increase business: help people for free. Being generous improves skills, increases exposure and expands your business. Greater traffic and profits follow generous bloggers because helping people for free helps you be skilled and see, two qualities in every prospering blogger who reaps sweet blogging profits.
A large set of bloggers goes in another direction. Some ask for business referrals from trusted blogging buddies to drum up business. Feel free to take this route but know referral fishing is an ineffective way to drive profits because of two clear reasons:
- referral-seeking seems to be time-wasting
- referral-seeking rarely inspires trusted bloggers to take clear, business-building action, for you
I know 20 plus web developers. A few trusted blogging web developer buddies have reached out to me, seeking referrals. Two issues arise:
- the referral seeker has no idea if I know bloggers needing web development; non-targeted campaign
- I already know 20 plus developers, trusted buddies all, so I could never choose one to refer to someone if 20 seem qualified
Top Bloggers Become Ruthlessly Effective with their Time
Versus seeking referral business by asking blogging buddies if they know someone requiring your service, spend 20 minutes to write and publish a quality guest post for a blogger in your business niche. Instead of pitching 1 human, show off your web development skills for free, via a guest post, for 1,000 people. Do you see what I mean? Leverage. Do not ask for business. Serve for business. Although time needs pass and generosity needs inclusion in blogging business-building, helping for free is the quickest, simplest way to increase blogging business because you reach large, targeted audiences of clients with your attention and energy versus asking 1 person for business in non-targeted, ineffective fashion.
12 Times Daily Sales
I recall the day vividly, 5 years ago. I created and launched Blogging From Paradise. Before writing 100 plus eBooks, I wrote one. I did drive some sales through my blog but guest posting woke me up; why not leverage my presence and grow business by helping people for free, via different platforms? Eye-opener for me. Instead of asking, I gave. How easy? Giving freely is the easiest way to get freely. I observed a 12 times daily sales eBook increase for good reason that day: helping people generously through sites other than your blog is a simple way to grow your blogging business.
The simplest, direct, effective way to grow your business is to help people for free. Asking for referrals leads to a client or customer here and there, but full time bloggers are not in the “here and there” business as far as growing your venture. Pro bloggers drive steady profits through their blog by being generous on their blog and on other platforms.
Be helpful for free. Publish posts. Submit guest posts. Run a podcast. Broadcast live on Facebook. Help people for free to help people for pay. Versus untargeted referral-seeking, this is the effective way to grow your blogging business from a generous, genuine energy.
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