If you're like most people, you've probably convinced yourself that you don't have enough time. Whether it's time to work on your business, set new fitness goals, start a new business or just about anything…we often give up before we even start because we believe it's just not possible to fit in our busy lives.
Well, the interesting thing is, if you sit down and do the calculations, you'd be surprised at just how much time you really do have.
To make it easier to figure out how much time you actually have, download our free Time Calculator.
It's a simple, but highly effective, spreadsheet that will reveal the time you actually have to work on things you've been putting off. And it will help you identify the time blocks you can use to your benefit each day.
1. Simply open the spreadsheet and you'll see all the days of the week across the top and then 60 minute time blocks on the side. These time blocks should start from the time you wake up to the time you go to bed, so you may need to make adjustments. You can also switch to 30 minute increments to be more precise, if you prefer.
2. In each time block, mark all the times you are busy. For example, include time at your job, exercise, family time, church, meal preparation and eating commuting, etc.
3. Then for open blocks, write in “1” for each hour block that you have free. If you switch to 30 minute blocks, enter “0.5”.
4. Once you've completed these steps, you'll see how much free time you have each day AND the total free time you have each week.
Of course, this calculation is just the first step in getting more done with your time and reaching those big goals you never thought you had time for. From here, you'll need to connect that time to the goals you want to achieve. You may also ask yourself, "What am I spending time on in my business that would best be outsourced to someone else?" If bookkeeping is one of them, call us for a free session to strategize about streamlining your business finances.
See below for an example of how the free time calculator works, and download yours for free:
Would it come as a surprise to you if I said we’re all sales people? It’s true.
Every time you have a prospective client on a discovery call, you’re making a sales pitch. Every time you send an email or write a social media post with an offer, you’re making a sales pitch. Every time you write a blog article, you’re making a sales pitch.
And you’re probably pretty good at it, too, or you wouldn’t be where you are today, would you?
So why do we continue to think we’re so bad at sales?
Sales Feels “Icky”
I hear this one a lot. You feel pushy or uncomfortable when talk turns to money. You don’t want to force anyone into a decision. You secretly think your rates are too high.
I’m going to be honest with you. This is one of those things that gets better only with practice. But the good news is, you don’t have to be on the phone with a prospective client to get that practice time in.
Instead, use the technique self-help gurus have been advocating for years: Look in the mirror and talk to yourself. Practice saying your rates out loud. Practice your segue from discovery to sales pitch. The more you do it, the more natural it will sound, and the less uncomfortable you will feel when on a real call.
Fix Your Mindset
What if you weren’t selling anything, but instead were simply chatting with a friend about the incredible new product that was going to change his or her life? You’re helping your friend to improve their lifestyle by sharing your experience with this new product or service.
That’s exactly how you should think about selling your goods and services. You’re not trying to get your prospective client to spend money. Instead, you’re offering a solution to their problems. You’re genuinely helping them to overcome some obstacle in their life or business. When you can turn your thinking around from “sales” to “helping” you’ll find it’s much easier to have the sales talk.
Don’t Be Afraid of the Follow Up
Most clients won’t say yes with the first call, and maybe not even with the second. But good small business owners know that many sales can be closed if you simply take the time to follow up. Send a quick email and invite your prospect to:
Don’t let that old “I’m not good at sales” thinking get in the way of making a real difference in people’s lives, and in growing your business and your profits. With these easy tips, you can quickly turn your sales blocks into a system for landing new clients consistently and that means you're not only making bigger profits, you're helping others at the same time. It's a win-win.
How can we help you today? If you're overwhelmed with bookkeeping tasks, need QuickBooks advice or training, please reach out to us and let's chat - like friends!
Aside from time and location freedom, the biggest benefit to starting an online business is the lack of start-up capital required. You don’t have to buy inventory to stock a store. You don’t have to spend a lot on equipment. And you don’t have to shell out cash for employees and insurance and all those other costs associated with offline businesses.
But that low-cost mentality can cause you to lose sight of the bigger picture, too.
While it is possible to start a business without spending any money at all, it’s truly not a good idea. That free hosting account will no doubt have downtime issues (not to mention the ads they’ll serve up to your visitors). Free word processors will have compatibility issues with other, more common solutions. Free WordPress themes and plugins can have support issues.
So while bootstrapping is a good thing, making business decisions based solely on cost is not. And nowhere is that more true than when it comes to choosing an email list manager.
Here’s the biggest problem we see with low-cost providers, including those you install and manage yourself: deliverability. Email services such as Yahoo, Gmail, and others vigorously defend their users’ accounts against spam, and will often mark your legitimate email as spam, simply based on the IP address it originates from.
Large email list providers have the resources to fight these false spam reports and keep their deliverability rates high. That’s what their users pay for. But when you choose a free or low-cost provider (or manage your own server), this might not happen. Over time, you’ll see your deliverability rates plummet.
Deliverability aside, many low-priced providers can afford to charge lower rates because they limit the features. For example, you might only be able to collect 500 addresses, or you may only be able to send a few emails each month. Even worse, you may not be able to segment your list or automate your emails.
Before you make the choice to use a low-priced or free email provider, be sure you fully understand the limitations of the account. While some concessions might be okay with you, others might put a serious crimp in your business-building efforts.
Finally, keep in mind that changing providers later (when you’re “ready”) can be a huge undertaking. You’ll have multiple landing pages and opt-in forms to edit, connections with your shopping cart, webinar host, social media accounts, and countless other integrations to deal with. And you’ll have a list of names to import to your new provider, many of which will either opt-out or be undeliverable at your new host.
Rather than go through all that trouble, the better option is to choose the right provider from the start, and if cost is an issue, create a plan to cover the expense instead of settling for the wrong service.
One of the most important aspects of starting a membership site is to determine how much the membership will cost its members. Like with any product, there are many factors that go into pricing - issues such as the cost of the technology, cost of the products, time spent on the membership each month, the number of members you believe you can keep, and the profit you need to earn. Let’s look more deeply into these issues.
Cost of Technology
First, figure out what technology you plan to use for the membership. Include the cost of upgrading and maintenance, and everything that may need to be paid for to keep the membership going in terms of the technology.
Cost of Products
How much will it cost you to maintain your commitment to fill the membership with content? For example, if you’ve promised a full information product monthly to do with this niche, how much will it cost to produce?
How much time do you plan to commit to the membership each week and what is your time worth? For example, if it’s going to take a couple of hours a day, you need to count that in the cost.
How many members do you think you can get? Your audience may consist of thousands of people, but thousands aren’t going to join or stay members. More than likely 2 to 5 percent of your audience will join if the price is right. Most will only stay paying members for four months.
After expenses, how much do you need to earn? Will this be your main source of income? If you know that it will be, and you know that after expenses you’d like to make $2500 a month from the membership, this will get you closer to the right pricing point.
Audience’s Ability to Pay
Your niche audience has an income and you need to know that information, including how much income they can spare to spend on something like your membership.
The Value You’re Offering
Even when people think they cannot afford something, if it offers a lot of value, they’ll come up with the money.
Your Niche’s Popularity
If your niche is super popular, and there are many other people doing the same thing, you may need to consider how you can differentiate yourself. But, if it’s really popular, that means more people to join your membership too.
Is anyone offering the same thing you’re offering? If so, how much are they charging and how busy are they? If you can spare the money, join a few of your competitors' membership programs to find out how it’s working for them and how you can do it better.
Pricing the membership program you’re offering has many factors involved, but you’ll be really glad you gave it thought before just slapping any price on it. Consider all factors, including your competition, and you’ll get started off on the right foot. Remember, you can always raise or cut prices based on what happens after you launch. The Bean Counters Bookkeeping would love to take a look at your numbers and help you determine the state of your accounts. Need help? Give us a call!