Drink at Work!

Every had one of those days where you just want to drink at work?  Yep, you get in, open your email and ‘Wham!’, it hits you.  Coffee just won’t cut the mustard and the Scots blood in you cries out for something stronger?

OK, maybe it’s just me 🙂

For those days, I have this little guy.  It’s probably the most sensible thing my client, Mantality, stocks!

Yes, you know you want one.  GET IT HERE

Is google sounding the death knell for comparison shopping finance affiliates?

Google just released a mortgage comparison shopping tool in California.

Whereas previously the search term would result in a list of indexed publishers offering comparison shopping services search results now include Google’s own site.

This is not a free service as Google is licensed as a mortgage broker in California.

I can’t help but wonder how this will affect other mortgage comparison shopping sites who now have to compete on a playing field owned by what will be the largest competitor.

It will be interesting to see whether challenge is brought claiming unfair competitive practices as clearly Google would have a distinct advantage over its competitors if they chose to place their own results higher than thoseof other  indexed or paid competitors.

Fear, more often than laziness, is the cause of procrastination.

This one surprised me. 

“We begin to work only when the fear of doing nothing at all exceeds the fear of not doing it very well … And that can take time.”

Sure, there are times when laziness is the reason for not getting something done, but more often the root of procrastination is fear, says British philosopher and author Alain de Botton on his website, The Book of Life.

“The only way to overcome this habit, is to abandon the accompanying habit of perfectionism. ”

“Instead of wasting time planning around and preparing for your project, find a way to begin it.”

“… to procrastinate less means overcoming that fear of not being able to do it exactly how we want it to be done (perfectionism). It means just doing it. An imperfectly done task is better than an unfinished task.”

Read the full story here.  Thanks for the story Eric Chowles! 

The problem isn’t that life is unfair – it’s your broken idea of fairness

Unless you’re winning, most of life will seem hideously unfair to you, says Oliver Emberton, in his insightful blogpost.
We like to like to think that society rewards those who do the best work, But in reality, social reward is just a network effect. Reward comes down mostly to the number of people you impact.

Oliver 3 life rules are simple.
Rule #1: Life is a competition

Rule #2. You’re judged by what you do, not what you think

Rule #3. Our idea of fairness is self interest.

Read the original post here 

Affiliate Marketing Blueprints are lies

“Why isn’t my site making any money?  I followed the blueprint!” is the question I’m most often asked by affiliates.

It saddens me that every day starry eyed new affiliates go out and buy the latest and greatest course on ‘how to become a gazamilibillionaire on the internet in under 24 hours’ only to discover after months of courses, masterminds, mentorships & exclusive coaching that they’ve now invested thousands into lining the pockets of ‘internet millionaires’ but have very little to show for it.

Unless of course they use their newly minted skills to drive more traffic to their mentor, who in turn fleeces the next victim and pays them a commission for telling the world how great the training was.

It’s no wonder affiliate marketing has a bad name.

Here’s the thing:

There is no bulletproof recipe for success.  There are however fundamentals that undperpin success in affiliate marketing.

1. Follow Your Passion

Whether you’re blogging, building a community or expanding a topic specific site, it has to be authentic. If you’re not genuinely interested in the topic it’s going to show.

2. Build a Mailing List

I CANNOT stress this enough. Your mailing list is your goldmine. It will continue to deliver returns year after year, if you nurture it, keep growing it and most importantly ensure your audience enjoys receiving mail from you.

3. Advertise

Without new visitors to your site, your business will stagnate. Figure out your audience profile and run ads on Facebook, Google and other outlets.
For bonus points measure your impact. Track the number of signups to your newsletter, so you know whether the advertising pays for itself.

4. Learn the Industry

There are a lot of scammers out there that promise you the world, but only if you take their course. Don’t fall for this.
One of my favorites right now is extramoneyanswer.com by Shawn Collins.

If you have the budget for it, attend the Affiliate Summit, held twice a year in the USA.  Yes, it’s pricey to get there, especially if you’re from Africa, but it’s worth it.
I’ve attended this conference at least 10 times and learn something new every visit.

5.  Choose your networks wisely.

Obviously I’m biased here, as my day job is at OfferForge.com, and I’d love you to work with us, but there are dozens of great ad networks and hundreds of not-so-great ones out there.

Do your due diligence.  How long have they been in business?  Who’s the founder?  What did they do before?  Are the clients exclusive to them?

There are dozens of other criteria you could use to make your choice.  Not all networks are equal in all markets.  Find a couple of networks you can trust and stick to them.



Don’t fear the fundamentals

I admit, I like bright, shiny things. I’m easily distracted and I often find myself drawn into projects and new business ideas purely because I get fixated on them.

I am a serial entrepreneur. Admitting this is not easy, but as they say, recognizing you have a problem is the first step.

With that moniker comes the dubious honor of always having your ideas competing for attention and time.
Growing a business is incredibly hard. Make no mistake, it requires sacrifice, hard work, delayed gratification and a bunch of habits I have yet to fully master.

There are lots of moving parts in a business so optimising your processes, developing strategies, planning and benchmarking are all critical, but none more so than focusing on the fundamentals.

James Carr, on his blog says “The greatest skill in any endeavor is doing the work. And for that reason, most people don’t need more time, more money, or better strategies. They just need to do the real work and master the basics.”

I find this especially true when you’re a multi-business entrepreneur. Whether you’re doing the work yourself or have a team to execute it’s critical that you have a bias toward action.
If sales are down, don’t spend three weeks commissioning a study on the macro environment, hit the phones!
If your app isn’t getting downloads, don’t run a 4 week test on a tweak to the UX, promote the hell out of it on social media.
If social media tells you it’s rubbish, well then you may have to go back to the drawing board 😉

When you get the shits

10494856_10152917662870450_5257209045032899573_n“Look, I’m a great designer.  I am awesome at cropping, clipping, contextualizing and have a natural flair for design.  My only weakness is spelling, but hey, that’s what spellcheck is for.”

“Why I’m looking for a job?  Oh, I just got bored.  It was kind of a mutual thing.  My creative director and I both left the agency at the same time.  I hate to talk behind my employers back, but they lost a major client last week, so they’re probably going to fold.”