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11 Factors To Consider When Choosing A Coaching program

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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.

Learning From Coaching

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 :

  1. 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.

  2. 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.

  3. 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.

  4. 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.

  5. 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.

  6. 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.

  7. 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.

  8. 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.

  9. Value

    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.

  10. 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!

  11. Time

    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.

Overview

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 🙂

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Kevin Muldoon is a professional blogger with a love of travel. He writes regularly about topics such as WordPress, Blogging, Productivity and Social Media on his personal blog and provides support to bloggers at Rise Forums. He can also be found on Twitter @KevinMuldoon and .

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What Is the Most Powerful Key for Turning a Blog into a Business?

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Get comfortable with receiving money.

It IS that simple.

But I cannot lie; getting comfortable with receiving money is uncomfortable for most of us. I, like many bloggers, grew up with many money limiting beliefs in mind. I vibed from scarcity. I did not vibe from abundance. I saw folks in my life work hard at jobs to receive a minimum amount of money. I made many weird correlations between money and service. I figured you just worked hard, made enough money to survive and decided my life would progress along these lines.

Eventually, I woke up, owned these limiting beliefs and freed myself of these mind viruses to build my blog into a business.

Forget Practical Advice

Bloggers may advise you on practical tips for turning a blog into a business like:

  • build an email list
  • begin affiliate marketing
  • open consulting services
  • build passive income through courses and eBooks

None of these practical tips help you turn your blog into a business if you are allergic to money, or if you cling to many limiting beliefs and fears concerning money. Why? You follow advice to lose money if you fear losing money and ignore advice to make money if you fear losing money.

Get comfortable receiving money. This is the best advice for turning your blog into a full time business.

Getting comfortable receiving money moves you into abundant, prospering actions. You become more generous. You become more prolific. You begin opening income streams without attaching to any one stream. You also build your friend network generously, promoting other bloggers and expecting nothing.

All prior steps lead to increased blogging income. All prior steps came about because you became comfortable receiving money.

Fear-Filled Bloggers

I speak to many bloggers who fear monetizing their blogs. Said bloggers fear readers used to free, selling-free content will head for the hills or complain the moment income streams enter the fray. You cannot turn a blog into a business unless you open blogging income streams.

Get comfortable with:

  • receiving money
  • releasing fear-filled bloggers who whine about you receiving money

Only broke, poverty conscious, unhappy, unclear or jealous bloggers have a problem with you turning your blog into a business. Have you ever complained about someone who works a job to receive money? Of course not; no sane person complains about another human who works a job to make money. We all have that right. Why then would a sane person complain about you receiving money for service rendered on your blog? Let go these unhappy, unclear, folks. Get comfortable receiving money. Build a business through your blog.

It Is Just Money

It is only money.

Money is just a neutral means of exchange. Add no emotional charge to a neutral means of exchange; no big deal.

I promote my premium offerings through virtually every piece of content I create. I am comfortable with receiving money. I am comfortable building a business through my blog. If I can help people and receive money – in a world where money is the prime means of exchange – I help people and receive money. I am comfortable with it.

Do not be shy. Be clear.

Avoid doing the affiliate walk of shame, begging and pleading for enough money to buy a stick of gum each time you disclose your affiliate offering.

Be clear. Share how you make money through the sale of something on your blog.

Check out my blog disclosure statement. Does that make your head explode? I basically say I make money through all images and links on my blog. I cover myself and feel comfortable with receiving money.

Get clear.

Build your blog into a business.

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Blogging

eCommerce: 3 Simple Ways to Increase Traffic, Sales and Revenue

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For most people blogging is used as a fun and easy way to share their lifestyle or write about their passion. But for some this hobby had become their profession.

Nowadays there are many options to make money with a blog – for example by getting paid for advertising products. Another way is to add your own eCommerce to the blog and sell the products that you are passionate about in your own web store. Creating an online shop can be the first step into your life as a digital nomad or simply being your own boss.

A few years ago, it was necessary to work with a professional developer to integrate an online store to your website. Especially for small manufacturers, this meant a huge investment before they could even start selling their products. Nowadays setting up a web store has become a lot easier and cheaper: Platforms like Shopify can easily be integrated in existing domains and therefore help makers and crafters to start their own eCommerce without professional help. Once you have set up your own Shopify store it is all about increasing the traffic. A bigger reach will eventually lead to a higher number of sales and more revenue.

So, let’s have a look at three simple steps to do so:

1 – Turn your small business into a smart business…

…by adding automation and product management to your website. When launching your business, it might be fine to keep track of the orders in an Excel spreadsheet at first. But since you expect your business to grow it will become one of the most important things to have a management platform in place that allows you to process orders and handle inventory professionally. Therefore, it can be handy to add a production planning and scheduling software as integration to your existing web store. An easy-to-use solution for Shopify-users is the Shopify inventory integration that adds products to your website, manages inventory or tracks shipments.

2 – Make your products sound and look good…

…by adding high-quality images and longer product descriptions to your page. Not only will this make your eCommerce look more professional, but it is also a great way to increase your traffic by reaching a higher rank in the search results. If you are not able to create these yourself, you can outsource writing or graphic design work to freelancers on sites like Fiverr or Upwork.

3 – Don’t stop blogging…

…or get it started if you haven’t done so yet. While it is exciting to start your own business it also takes a lot of time and energy to set everything up. Anyhow, this should not lead to giving up on your blog. Why? Because a growing eCommerce site and an active blog go hand in hand. And remember: The content of your blog should be interesting to your targeted audience and contain at least one thousand words in order to effectively rank in the search results. Here are some examples of the top eCommerce blogs for inspiration.  

…and that is it!

You are now almost ready to start your own eCommerce! In addition to following these three steps, it is always good to keep an eye on your ecommerce competitors. Do not steal their idea but have a look at what is working for them and aim to go beyond that. As long as you focus on your product, the content of your site and a growing search ranking you will successfully manage to increase your traffic, the sales and the revenue of your business.

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Blogging

Should You Answer that Blogging Question Again?

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“Ryan, how do I increase blog traffic?”

 

“Ryan, how do I make money blogging?”

 

If I had a dime for every blogger who asked me each question I’d have quite a few dimes. Toss in all the times I observe bloggers asking each question via Quora and various Facebook Groups and you have as many dimes as grains of sand in the Sahara Desert.

 

I know what you are thinking; should you answer the same question for the 2nd time, 10th time or 100th time? Confusing. One part of you wishes to be generous. Another part of you fears missing an opportunity to help someone who can be a potential client or customer. Another part of you feels annoyed at being asked the question again. Another part of you feels annoyed at embracing and releasing the guilt of ignoring the question.

 

Should you answer these common blogging questions again and again?

 

No.

 

Of course not.

 

Answering the same, common question more than 1 or 2 times is:

 

  • foolish
  • an inefficient use of your time
  • ineffective
  • amateur hour stuff

 

Here’s what I do to:

 

  • answer questions quickly and easily
  • open myself up to more potential blogging business through possible clients and customers
  • be calm, cool, collected and at peace despite being asked the same question many times

 

Are you ready?

 

Write a blog post!

 

Or write and self-publish an eBook.

 

DUH!

 

If someone asks me how to drive more traffic to my blog I send them this link:

 

4 Blog Traffic Driving Fundamentals

 

Or I send ’em a link from any one of my myriad blog traffic driving posts on Blogging From Paradise.

 

If someone asks about specific income streams for making money through their blogs I send them a link to my eBook:

 

15 Ways to Make Money Blogging

 

Or if someone asks how to make money through guest posting I send them this link from my guest post on the blog of the awesome Enstine Muki:

 

How to Write a Guest Post that Grows Your Business

 

What an easy, simple, efficient, effective way to:

 

  • answer a common question many times
  • answer a common question in 1-2 seconds
  • drive traffic to my blog
  • increase my blogging profits
  • help people, and be helped by people through their prospering of me
  • avoid anger
  • avoid annoyance
  • avoid judging people who have no idea how to blog

 

Fools complain about new bloggers asking the same, old questions. Why does a new blogger ask a question? They have no idea how to blog! Duh. Why anger at their ignorance? Why get annoyed that you need to answer the question again? Write a blog post answering the question. Send the blog post to anybody who asks the question. Seize opportunities to help people and to drive traffic and profits to your blog.

 

Email Mistake

 

Do you own Gmail? I do not. Since I do not own Gmail it’d be foolish for me to answer questions via Gmail when I can be answering the same question on my self-hosted blog. I own Blogging From Paradise. I own that online real estate. Answer questions on your owned cyber real estate. Brand you. Grow your business. Increase your traffic. Keep the ball in your court. Have posture.

 

Leverage

 

If I spend 10 minutes answering a question for 1 human I am a fool when I could spend 45 minutes answering the question for 100, or 10,000 or 1,000,000 humans, by writing a helpful blog post answering the question and sending the blog post link to all future folks who ask the question. Plus; when the post goes live, I answer common questions passively, said common questions no doubt in the minds of thousands of bloggers out there.

 

Leverage. Write a blog post. Do not help one person. Help 10,000 people. Save your time and energy. Make more money.

Matthew Loomis at Build Your Own Blog is a smart guy. Peep his home page. He lays out clear, concise steps for building your blog via his sidebar. You just know how many people asked him the common, pressing, basic blogging questions that he skillfully answered through those clear steps.

 

He leveraged his knowledge. He answered common questions BEFORE people asked him common blogging questions. Smart! Help a ton of folks quickly and easily. Drive blog traffic. Increase blogging profits. Lower your bounce rate. Improve the amount of time people spend on your blog.

 

Write a blog post. Send the blog post link to anybody who asks the common blogging question.

 

Think abundantly.

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