Tag Archives for " income "

Wealth-Building Wednesday — June 30, 2009

Last week, we talked about getting the proper mindset for building wealth. As you may recall, you can have everything: All the tools, money, advertising, etc. and still fail. It may be due to a mindset that isn’t quite right.

And it doesn’t mean that you have a bad attitude. It may be that your past experiences have set your expectations for yourself too low. If you don’t aim high, you may not hit your target. The world can be your oyster. If you make it so.

Today, we’re going to talk about how to parlay your interests into a wealth-building activity. There are many ways to build wealth: Real estate, investing in stocks or other securities, becoming an executive in a company that grows, etc.

But by far, what is within reach of most of us (i.e., YOU) is starting your own business. A popular approach is to take something you really like, something with which you are really, REALLY passionate about and find an angle that makes money from it. Here are some questions to get the creative juices flowing:

  • What are your hobbies?
  • At your current job, what are your strengths? What do people come to you for?
  • When you’re out and about, what makes you happy?
  • What are you really good at but never pursued because “life” got in the way?
  • What are your dreams?
  • If you had to name 3 of your most redeeming qualities, what would they be?
  • Do you currently own any “idle assets” that have the potential to earn an income?

These are just a few questions that you could ask yourself to find out what kind of business you could start to begin your wealth-building empire. The how comes later.

Now, of course, there are many different methods and media in which to run your own small (no, BIG) business: Traditional “brick and mortar,” online, multi-level marketing, agent (as in Real Estate), or a service business (like running errands for the elderly or really busy). I suggest that you begin with the online aspect because the start-up costs are extremely low (in many cases, you can start a business for free), the barriers to entry are nil (online, you can look as big and BE as big as Amazon; nobody has to know you’re running your website out of your garage or spare bedroom), and the chances for success without killing yourself are pretty high.

Plus, virtually any business can be run from the web — even service businesses. Just target local consumers and you can build a thriving business in no time, selling services or products (or both — this is where you can differentiate yourself from your competition).

Advertising costs are low, as is setting up a database of customers and potential customers for future promotions that you might have (call them “leads” or “prospects”).

In short, virtually everything a business can do can be easily done online.

As your website grows, so too can your enterprise. Start a small website, branch out into a small office, then a second physical store, etc. The possibilities are endless!

One thing I’ll caution you on right now: Don’t get caught up in the technical aspects or let your fear of technology stop you from getting started. In subsequent weeks, I’ll show you how to do some of the technical stuff, but it won’t get very complicated at all. 10 years ago — even 5 years ago — you needed a lot of expertise to set up and run a successful online business. You can start one now with virtually zero technical know-how and very little money and time.

But I’m getting ahead of where we need to be right now.

So you asked yourself the questions above and arrived at a list of answers (you wrote them down, I know). Now, think like a customer: What do I want? Am I seeking information, product recommendations, or solutions to problems? How can YOU help me? Can you provide me information? Recommendations?  Solutions?

If you can answer these questions, then you may well be on your way to creating a lucrative business for yourself, one that provides you the income you need and the wealth you desire.

Next week, we’ll brainstorm some more and define a concept for your business.

I am basing a lot of this introductory wealth-building information on what’s in this Action Guide, which, by the way, you can consider the “fast-track” to this first set of WBW posts. In other words, if you don’t want to wait for each week’s posts, you can just read the whole guide and go from there.

Two Things To Do If You Have a Budget Shortfall

Yeah, sounds like Washington DC speak, right? “Budgetary shortfall…”

If you are taking in less money than you spend, you have a budgetary shortfall. A deficit. A hole. You may not yet be going into debt; you may be using available savings.

A short-term budget shortfall is sometimes necessary. Perhaps your car broke down and you needed a repair. Washing machine stopped working. Got laid off.

Nevertheless, a prolonged shortfall can wreak havoc on your household. What do you do?

There are two things you have to do in a lengthy budget shortfall. The first, and I think it’s obvious, is to “tighten the belt.” Cut out unnecessary spending. That cable bill? You don’t need it. Cell phone? Cut your minutes, get a new, cheaper plan (pre-paid is a viable option). Netflix? Can it.

But companies that sell you this sort of stuff have gotten smarter. They tie you into contracts with early termination fees. Cell phone companies are especially adept at this.

You can only cut your expenses so much.

So you have to tackle the other part of the equation:

Income – Expenses = Cash Flow

Obviously, you want a positive cash flow. Once you’ve gotten your expenses down, there’s only one thing you can do to make your cash flow rise: Increase your income.

Today, with unemployment higher than it’s been in my short memory, you are likely facing a layoff or salary cut. No increases are in sight for “Average Joes” so you best think of another alternative.

Do you have a hobby? Can you convert your passion into cash? (By the way, my hobbies are generally expensive, so I face a dilimma – cut it out or turn it into income?)

Do you have unique skills (you do, you just have to find them and monetize them)?

Can you hold down a second (or a third) job for enough time to even out the income and expenses?

I have talked about this before here, here, and here.

I am convinced that the only sure thing nowadays is to own and operate your own online business. Become an “information marketer.” You know things other people don’t. If you have a penchant for writing, you can build a  “small reports fortune” by writing short (5-15 pages) reports about your area of expertise. You can often sell these for $5-$27!

If your writing isn’t great (it’s way better than you think – just write like you talk; people like that), start up a private label rights business. Here, you acquire (often for free, sometimes for a fee) pre-written reports that you can call your own and sell them. Two other great sources are PLRWholesaler and PLRSO Club.

You can set up blogs and websites with AdSense ads (you get a few pennies every time somebody clicks on an ad). I have posts with AdSense ads on this blog. While I don’t make a ton of money with ads, the money they generate adds up.

Another way to build up an online income is become an affiliate and sell other people’s products. Commission Junction, LinkShare, Google, and many others offer affiliate programs. All you do is sign up, put some affiliate links in your blog posts or web pages, and wait for the commissions to come in. It’s not exactly that easy, but it is that simple. Of course, the more smart effort you put into it, the more money you’ll generate.

The best part about all of this? Once you set it up, it’s all pretty automatic! Of course, your web site, whether it’s a blog or a more traditional site, has to be full of content that people want. It’s not good enough to throw up some feeble content and then let the site go. Constantly update it; keep it fresh. Keep people coming back for more.

Offer VALUE.

These are just a few examples of how you can create more income (out of virtual thin air). There are hundreds of ways to start a budding online business.

One of the best systems I’ve come across is the Internet Millions System. It’s a PLR product I bought, modified my way, and put together in a digital download. It shows you how to begin a Private Label Rights business – how to acquire product, promote it, get traffic to your web site, convert browsers into buyers, etc. Basically, everything is covered from start to finish.

If you are currently suffering a negative cash flow, I encourage you to act on the information you’ve read here. If you need any help, please contact me via the Comments.