Get Your Local BUSINESS on Page One… NOT Your Local Business’s WEBSITE

local business on page one of Google

Get Your Local BUSINESS on Page One, Not your Local Business’s Website

PROBLEM: Your local business is not on page one of Google.

BIGGER PROBLEM: You’ve spent hours and hours, and a lot of dollars.

But your website is STILL stuck on page two… where local businesses go to die 🙁

It’s crazy hard for local businesses to get their websites on the first page of Google.

If you want to know how to get your website on page one of Google, I recommend this article by Neil Patel:

But did you know? Some of the best business listings on Google are NOT actually… websites.

NEWS FLASH! You don’t need to have a website… to have your offer on the first page of Google!

THIS article will show you how to change your approach and get your local business on page one…

..much quicker, much more effectively.

And with a lot less sweat, time and money.

local business on page one

DON’T try to get your business’s WEBSITE on page one… when it’s so EASY to get your OFFER on page one.


Google wants to serve up the most relevant results for local businesses.

Those results might NOT websites or blogs.

Believe it or not, I was able to get my offers in front of eager buyers for four years before actually building websites.

(I talk a little about how that started in this post: 7 Ways to Hack Local Search SEO for a Free Front Page Listing!)

These front-page offers STILL rake in thousands of dollars monthly income,

without paying-per-click or hiring an expensive SEO service.


After proving the concept for myself, I helped friends get their local business on page one too!

Like Nora Birt of Best Dog, Ltd... her dog training business is listed SIX TIMES on the first page of Google.

Yes, she has a website for her local business on page one.

But for keywords “dog obedience training Monument CO” she also has:

  1. Her Facebook page with fifteen 5-star reviews
  2. A Yellow Page listing
  3. A Thumbtack listing
  4. A Yelp listing
  5. An Alignable listing
local business on page one

6 page one listing. More than one way to skin a cat. Er, dog. Awww you know what I mean….

Nora gets a slew of free exposure for her local business on page one of Google, without paying a dime for PPC or SEO.

If you want to read Nora’s review of Hack Local Search,
…add to the conversation,
…and try to match her performance,
join the free Hack Local Search group on Facebook.

I know what you’re thinking now…


Google seeks out the most relevant information for the folks that are searching.

When you stop thinking “in the box” of ranking your website, more possibilities come to light.

Think instead how to rank your business.

When customers search for products or services offered locally, they don’t just get sites stuffed with keywords. They also see local businesses on page one:

  • local directories: think Manta, YP, FourSquare, Yelp.
  • digital bulletin boards like HomeAdvisor, Thumbtack, Fixr
  • online classifieds: Craigslist is only one
  • social media: Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest
  • images: relevantly and geographically NAMED
  • videos: think about it.. YouTube is OWNED by Google…


As much as “local SEO” is an art and science for ranking websites

…the Hack Local Search Method is a roadmap for getting your local business on page one.

local business on page one of Google

Make Google YOUR friend! Get your local business on page one.

Any local business owner can have their irresistible offer on the 1st page of Google,when a customer is ready to buy,

…because of the way that the Hack Local Search Method works. Join the mastermind group on Facebook, FREE!

Would you like to have YOUR local business on page one?

Learn how all seven hacks work! Join the FREE Facebook group
where we’ll be showing practical step-by-steps directions that work.

Keep Stepping,


Don’t Give Out Business Cards

Gonna break without hallowed tradition here. My best advice to people starting out in business is that they DON’T give out business cards.

What do folks think they need to “be officially in business”?

A card, right?


don't give business cards

Giving  business cards is largely a waste of time: “Playing business” instead of DOING business

This post is going to spell out the difference between doing business… and “playing” business.

Why Would I Say, “Don’t Give Out Business Cards”..?

Most folks don’t really know what the card is actually for.

And who could blame them?

Tradition has taught them:

“Give your business card to everyone you meet.”

Your cards go in their pockets… then into the trash.

MOST folks have no idea what to actually DO with business cards.

They think that if they don’t give out business cards. that people will think they’re not really seriously in business…

It’s a matter of mindset: “Oh, I just give out business cards like snowflakes. It’s a numbers game!”

We think out of ten cards… sure, most will be lost, filed or ignored.

BUT..! 1 might actually result in a business transaction.

10 cards out, MAYBE 1 sale?

That’s a bass-ackwards way to play the numbers game in case you’re asking this kid.

Don’t Give Out Business Cards… GET Them Instead

Let’s change the mindset. Here’s an actual example from my screen repair business:

I get called to a house to fix screens. The homeowner is selling; the buyer wants them done.

The Realtor comes to the house while I’m working. I ask her, “Do you run into a lot of sellers demanding screens be fixed?”

“Yeah, I DO…” says the Realtor. “Do you have a card?”

“Not on me…” I reply.

(I don’t tell her that I never bothered to print any)

“….can I have one of YOURS?”

The Realtor is going to get a call later:

“Sandra, it was a pleasure meeting you at the Johnson house. Are there other closings you’re working now?”

“As a matter of fact, yes. The Jorgensons need their screen door fixed!”


But it doesn’t end there.

Don’t Give Out Business Cards… Instead, Work the Leads you GET

Sandra’s card is for Platinum Group Realtors.

I ‘like’ their page.

Which opens up a chat conversation.

“Hello, I just completed some work for Sandra Smith. I do screen repair on site. Sandra is going to have me repair a screen door for her, just in time for a closing. Would your Realtors like a rate sheet for our on-site service?”

…Platinum Group Realtors is typing a reply…

“We have 34 Realtors. If you come in, I’d be happy to put your information in each of their inboxes.”

Outgoing Marketing. Foot in the door = opportunity knocks 34 times instead of once 🙂

Even. More. Excellent.

THAT’s what ya do with business cards.

Don’t hand out YOUR card and pray that somebody gets back to you…

…instead, GET a card.

And work that freakin’ lead.

Keep Stepping,


The Most Important Asset in ANY Business: Not What You Might Think

Ever hear the saying,

“Take away a millionaire’s fortune, and in two years he’ll have it all back”?

That saying used to really bother me.

Not because I suspected it wasn’t true… we’ve all heard stories of men and women that have experienced loss and then came back stronger than ever.

What bothered me was that I just couldn’t fathom the reason WHY they’d be able to return to great wealth so quickly.

Most self-help gurus say the key is a “positive mental attitude”.

Which made me wonder what was wrong with MY attitude 

How’s it possible that a person that loses everything,

…gets it all back and more? In half the time or less?

Self-help books are only part right. “Positive mental attitude” is too pat of an answer.

Sure, attitude is a factor. But NOT the most important factor.

This just in: What makes a person is rich is the number and quality of their relationships.

Now, of course you value your family relationships above money.

All the money in the world can’t replace your Mom, your Dad, your spouse, your child. Never ever.

But I’m saying that even in business, the most important asset you can have of the depth and width of your relationships.

The Hidden Asset: What You are REALLY Building as a Business Owner

Say you spend 20 years building a successful widget factory.

One day, the factory burns to the ground.

In a moment, “everything you have” is lost.

Or is it?

Yes, you lost something, but you haven’t lost “everything”.

I’d even argue that you haven’t really lost much at all if you’ve been wise.

Say your factory, your inventory and equipment burns to the ground… you’ve actually lost the LEAST important stuff.

If you were honorable in your widget-making business, you’d still have everything you REALLY need!

Vendors that supply the raw materials for your widgets, folks that sell widget-making equipment…

…would still know, like and trust you.

They’d miss their star customer, that buys in bulk and pays on time.

What about your employees, skilled in widget-making because your training.

They would demand back their fair, genuine, generous employer.

The landlord would miss you too. He’d love to have you back because you keep your word and pay on time.

He has lots of properties, but good tenants are hard to come by.

Your customers would miss you, your widgets, and the way you delivered them with a smile.

The business community as a whole would want ou back. Your widget factory brought in traffic to other, neighboring businesses.

You treated competitors fairly and even lent them a hand sometimes. You looked after the interests of others and that will come back to you.

The “Material” Stuff was Really… Immaterial

See, you didn’t spend 20 years “building a widget factory”.

You spent 20 years building mutually profitable relationships.

Rebuilding the factory will be EASY, because of your REAL assets: your relationships. born in the crucible of service to others over a long period,

Should you decide to weather the storm and start again “from scratch”… you’ll have plenty of help.

You could come back stronger than ever.

Your relationships are the true seat of wealth.

Choose a good reputation over great riches; being held in high esteem is better than silver or gold. -Proverbs 22:1, NLT

So as you go to work today IN your business, remember to take a moment to work ON the most important part of your business – your relationships.

Take a moment to say a prayer. Invest in your relationship with GOD.

Say affirmations: strengthen your relationship with yourSELF.

And remember that “taking care of business” really means taking care of people.

Reach out and THANK your

Everyone that your business touches.

These relationships are your business’ lifeblood.

And don’t neglect your spouse, your children, your parents..!

They are the reason you do this in the first place.

Take a moment right now for a little expression of thanks. You never know how rich the dividends will be.

Hope you’ve enjoyed this little rant. 

Keep Stepping,


Giving Away My Copy of “The Ultimate Guide to Local Business Marketing”

Ultimate Guide to Local Business Marketing

The strangest book recommendation I’ll ever make. I’m giving my copy away free:

So I just read a book called “The Ultimate Guide to Local Business Marketing”.

Ultimate Guide to Local Business Marketing

Is this really the ULTIMATE Guide to Local Business Marketing?

I give it one star out of five.

(WHOA, Kurt… how is that a recommendation?!?!)

Well, it’s not a bad book… it’s actually a well-written
and extremely useful guide.

<=== It’s just incorrectly TITLED.

Inside, you’ll read about pay-per-click with Facebook ads… pay-per-click Google ads… and just a touch about SEO for promoting a local biz.

Also, the 80/20 rule and how it applies to finding your exact market, and refining your message to that market.

Which is great, if the title had been, “The Ultimate Guide for Using Facebook PPC ads, Google PPC ads, and the 80/20 Rule to Promote Your Local Business”.

What was missing?

Well, for starters about everything that Shoestring101 teaches about marketing on Facebook and Google.

Strategies that have made me hundreds of thousands of dollars in my local businesses.

How about:

Of the above ideas have literally increased my bottom line by many, MANY thousands… seven are FREE and one costs $5 a day or less.

And not one is mentioned in the “Ultimate Guide to Local Business Marketing”. Hmmm…

Shoot.. know what ELSE is missing from this “Ultimate Guide”..? Anything at all that’s not FB or Google:

  • Direct Mail
  • Postcards
  • Flyers
  • Road Signs
  • Loyalty Programs
  • Email
  • SMS marketing
  • Word of mouth
  • Local free business listings
  • Door hangers
  • Craigslist
  • Classified ads
  • Print ads
  • Radio spots
  • TV
  • Internet radio
  • Youtube
  • Twitter

…and a host of other low-tech, hi-tech, and new tech ways to market your local business.

So it ISN’T the “ULTIMATE” Guide to Local Business Marketing, is it?



That said, this is actually an EXCELLENT book. Full of my highlights, notes and dog-ears.


So if you ARE interested in:

  1. Building a landing page
  2. Your USP (Unique Selling Proposition)
  3. The 80/20 Rule in Marketing
  4. Keyword Research
  5. Facebook PPC Ads
  6. Google PPC Ads

…then it is a pretty darn decent read.

So I’m giving away a copy to a randomly selected human from the group that comments below.

And giving away a One Day Business Plan Course to another.

So if you want a free copy of “The Ultimate Guide to Local Business Marketing”,

or if you want free ticket to the course that teaches a boatload of profitable strategies that are missing in that book 😉

…put your salient thoughts and questions in the comments below!

Keep Stepping,


5 Steps to Make Sales Copy EASY

Make Sales Copy Easy

Make sales copy easy?

Tune into today’s marketing minute and see if it’s even possible.

The PROBLEM: Make Sales Copy Easier

When you’re a small business owner it’s CRAZY HARD to write your own sales copy!

Because you’re a expert in your small business. Beautiful products, amazing services… the best around at what YOU do.

But you’re NOT skilled to make sales copy: “salesmanship in print”.

You think you are too close to the process.

Make Sales Copy Easy

Make sales copy easy with this simple template

Common sense says that YOU should be the most qualified person to tell others about your business…

…but when you try to write copy, the “right words” just elude you.

But what if there was a way to make sales copy easy?

Make Sales Copy Easy for YOUR Business

What if there was a simple structure for make sales copy easy?

A step by step formula… that works EVERY time… a template that made everything a whole lot easier?

Then you could stop worrying “but I’m not a good copywriter” because that’s nonsense.

You’re are an EXPERT in what you do.

With a fill-in-the-blanks template you’ll also be an expert at selling!

Good news is, a killer template like this exists.

Keep reading, and “copy” this down 😉

This 5-Step Formula Makes Sales Copy Easy

Forget fancy bullet points and slick wording.

Just talk with your audience like you were sitting with a friend having coffee.


1) Name the audience and their problem.

2) Describe why that problem hasn’t been solved yet.

3) Hint there’s one simple thing your audience did not know, that would totally solve that problem!

4) Describe the transformation if your audience had the solution.

5) Tell them EXACTLY what to do next!

That “what to do next” ^ might be a “like” for your page… click for info… request for email, a referral… even a sale.

Or a REPEAT sale.

Five easy steps.

Look Back ^ and See. Did We Make Sales Copy Easy?

Haha don’t look now… but this formula was used in this very post!

Scroll up and see. I walked you through these five steps:

My audience and their problem: business owners that don’t know how to write sales copy.

Why their problem isn’t solved yet: underconfident, too close to the process

One simple thing you didn’t know: that there’s persuasive formula that works every time

The transformation: you’ll be as expert at selling as you are in the rest of your business

Then to go for the jugular, the call to action.

The action you took was to keep reading. 

Go back and reread.

You’ll never be at a loss for the right sales copy again!

Keep Stepping,



Three Counter-Intuitive Practices That Have Made Me Piles of Money

Sometimes the darkest moments in life are when you get the biggest breaks.

Here’s a story about how I learned a 3 very important lessons about marketing, right in the middle of a DISASTER.

These 3 suprising ideas.. and the counter-intuitive practices I adopted as a result… have made me hundreds of thousands of dollars.ss101 principle one

A Dark Day

Late 90’s, Colorado Springs: I had taken a second job to make ends meet.

Cleaning windows in Littleton, Colorado about 65 miles north of my house.

But this morning my boss called and said, “Kurt, it’s over. Sorry… we just don’t have enough work to support the whole crew. I’m letting you go.”

Numb, but still needing a caffeine fix I went to the coffee shop.

Now, I don’t want to over-spiritualize what happened next. But I don’t want to under-spiritualize it either:

Nursing my coffee and wondering how to make ends meet… I earnestly asked God what to do next.

First Principle: An Inspired Voice

So, take this however you will: after my prayer I distinctly heard a voice say, “Go wash these windows.”

Huh. Okay.

I asked the manager,“Hey, your windows are making my eyes hurt. Okay if clean the windows? No charge.”

“Knock yourself out.”

This was the first principle… when you think you need to hustle, you really need to SLOW DOWN and LISTEN.

‘Disaster’ doesn’t mean curtains… it may even mean opportunity.

I read somewhere that ‘crisis’ and ‘opportunity’ are expressed by the same chracter in Chinese.

‘Crisis’? Time to stop and listen.

Ask, seek, knock.

It will be given, it will be found, it will be opened to you.

Second Principle: Service First

Now, obeying the impulse to do the coffee shop windows, I didn’t think of that moment as my big break.

I just was kind of, you know… paying it forward.

Rendering service without necessarily requiring payment of any kind.

Just taking pride in the privilege of work.

As I squeegeed the third of four windows, a gentleman stopped on his way out the door. “Do you do residential?

“Yes I do.”

“Give me your business card.”

“Um… don’t have one on me.”

Which was kinda true… I didn’t have a card on me because I didn’t have one, period.

What happened next was crucial. It meant making or breaking this opportunity!

Third Principle: YOU Get the Contact Info

It would have been easy at this juncture to blow everything. Who doesn’t have a business card?

I mean, really. How could this gentleman possibly think I was trustworthy without even a DANG BUSINESS CARD?!?

The following principle was worth hundreds of thousands of dollars in the coming years:

“Tell you what. I said. “Give me YOUR business card, and I’ll call you to give you a bid. When’s the best time?”

Gary Reddy became the first customer of the newly formed window cleaning company, Crystal Clear Window Washing.

This secret enabled me to build a window cleaning company that not only kept me busy and fed for years… but enabled me to hire five other professionals…

Don’t give your business card away. GET a business card instead.

Giving a person a card puts the responsibility on THEM.

They may lose the card, may forget it for months… but when I have my prospect’s card, I can call them. And it’s kind of expected, even agreed to if the prospect tells me when’s a good time.

Subtle, but powerful principle.

Once Again: The Three Counter-Intuitive Principles

So the first principle in this story was that I needed to relax and call on Someone that had more on the ball than me.

Although things seemed to be dark… losing my second job (that I thought I neeeeeded)  was actually a turning point for me, to the good.

Sometimes the noise and hustle gets to be too much.

So stop and listen.

Second principle: serve without demading payment.

It’s a way to let yourself, others and even your surroundings know that YOU have abundance.

You have enough to give.

He that has, more will be given to him. He that has not, even what he has will be taken away.

Try to only get, get, get… and you’ll end up empty. Chasing “opportunities” that fly away in the wind.

But embrace the idea of serving FIRST, and I guarantee that REAL opportunities will find YOU.

Third principle. I would stop handing out biz cards willy-nilly.

Instead, collect them.

TAKE the responsibility of being the one that calls.

Not everybody gets the subtlety of this shift, but if you do… it will be worth piles of money to you.

Wouldja Ask a Girl if YOU… Could Give HER… Your Phone Number?

Nawwww, shoot.

That doesn’t sound right at all, does it?

So for that reason, I don’t print out business cards for myself. Ever.

I DO print out business cards for my employees, for reasons I’ll make clear in another post.

Now, if in YOUR business it’s kind of expected, go ahead and print them I s’pose.

But if I did hand out biz cards… I would be sure to ask for my prospect’s card first.

Remember that the POWER is not in supplying your own information.

It’s in capturing your prospect’s information and driving the interaction.

Okay Steppers!

Thanks for joining me for today’s triple-shot latte of marketing wisdom.

Ask nice in the comments below,

…and I’ll send you a PDF of how I was able to turbo-charge the “get their card” strategy, in two different but wildly profitable ways.

Til then,

Keep Stepping!


How to Cold Contact B2B Using Facebook, Step by Step

cold contact using Facebook pm

Why would any small business owner want to learn to cold contact B2B using Facebook?

If your business serves other businesses, the lifeblood is getting new leads.

But getting those leads can be like walking barefoot into your kid’s room.

You never know what sharp objects you might step on, just trying to do your job!

This guide will show you how to navigate the landmines, while getting to the gold:

New leads, new relationships, new accounts,

…and new money.

I can’t promise you the kind of results that I’ve had, BUT..!

It’s possible to make sales the same day you try this.

Let’s dive in!

Cold Contact B2B Using Facebook Step 1: Search

It isn’t hard to find businesses that need your products and services.

What can be hard is finding the right approach to make business connections that last.

The best way is to test, test, and test some more… and do it LIVE with real subjects.

Here’s how I got a pile of new contacts to sell to,

…and make them HAPPY that I called on them!

Step one is to know your target customer.

For this case study I typed my target audience, “real estate broker” into the search bar.

cold contact B2B search results... click to embiggen ;-)

Over 200 results in my geographical area!

Finding prospects to cold contact B2B using Facebook is a snap; these guys WANT to be found.

You’ve narrowed down the field to your exact audience.

Now for the first “money move”. Read on…

Cold Contact B2B Using Facebookstep 2: Like and PM

Before striking up a conversation with a business, you’ll want to “like” their business.

Caution: do this over the course of 2 or 3 days.

Facebook doesn’t like you texting too many businesses, one after the other.

Makes ya look like a ‘bot, or worse… a spammer. Which you are not, if you are honestly offering value.

After I “copy and pasted” the same opener to about ten businesses,

…FB began giving me the message “this feature is not available right now” -in red letters. Not a good sign.

To fix this, I made sure to:

  • keep the number of businesses I was contacting to a limit of ten per day, and
  • vary the wording of the opening sentence

Now, I should tell you that at first I crashed and burned the art of cold contact B2B using Facebook.

This is because I was trying too hard to “sell“:

Me, me,me. How d'ya LIKE me?? This greeting was met by the sound of crickets...

Me, me,me. How d’ya LIKE meeee?? This first greeting was met by the sound of crickets… (NO reply)

Getting a conversation going with a prospective B2B customer is a lot like dating.

Ya might get your face slapped a few times before you “score”.

Others gave me the brush-off. And no wonder! I was going for the jugular without building a real conversation

Others gave me the brush-off. And no wonder! I was going for the jugular without building a real conversation

There’s a true art to selling, without selling. Sound confusing? Maybe, but absolutely true.

But take heart, young padawan! You’ve just taken your first step into a larger world 😉

Learn to use the “Jedi mind trick” move…

Cold Contact B2B Using Facebook Step 3: Ask Open-ended Questions

PMing a “cold” prospect is like trying a pickup line in a bar.

Now, before you feel too icky for practicing your pickup lines,

…realize that you and your prospect dressed up to go out for a reason.

If you didn’t want to socialize, you wouldn’t be hanging out where people talk in the first place.

But ya gotta have skillz 😉

So while your end game is to ask for the sale… don’t lead with that.

Instead of just pushing a link, start a real conversation.

Ask your prospect open-ended questions:

This broker knows her biz... she thinks I'M the prospect. And that's okay, at least we're talking

This broker knows her biz… she thinks I’M the prospect. And that’s okay, at least we’re talking

It really doesn’t matter what the reply is, as long as you begin a conversation…

The power of the open-ended question: One broker said yes, the other said no. But again, we are talking

The power of the open-ended question: One broker said yes, the other said no. But again, we are talking…

Whether the prospect says yes or no to this ice-breaker question, the main thing is that we are now engaged in an actual conversation.

A conversation that began without ME talking about ME.

Now for the “ninja” move…

Cold Contact B2B Using Facebook Step 4: Pivot

Note that above ^ I began the open-ended questions with:

  • my prospect’s first name and
  • the particular area that he/she serves

That variation in text takes care of Facebook’s radar.

I’m not just cut-and-pasting the same thing like a ‘bot or a spammer.

But since I’ve broken the ice and have a real conversation on my hands,

…I can now pivot the prospect’s interest.


cold contact B2B search results

I keep this script on hand because it works. “Whoops, sorry!” –HERE’s the pivot ^

Every time (so far) that I pivot the conversation with the prospect’s interests in mind, they are more open.

Which brings us to the “end game move “:

Cold Contact B2B Using Facebook Step 5: ASK

Now for the equivalent of asking for your target’s phone number…

…you ask for permish to contact your prospect again.

She's interested! Time to ask permish to contact again.

She’s interested! Time to ask permish to contact again.

The ONLY thing you should be focused on right now, is to establish contact.

NOT making an immediate sale.

You’ll want to ASK…
(or, even better! …let your contact ask)
…for further information.

Remember, the fortune is in the follow-up.

Your goal is to establish a timeframe and a method for getting back together again soon.

cold contact B2B contacts

Often, you don’t even have to ask permission to contact again. If you’re offering real value, THEY may chase YOU


One of the best things about cold PMing is that you can have several conversations, at different levels, going on all at once!

cold contact B2B multiple screens open


Okay, Steppers!

This is it for this Step-by-Step: How to Cold Contact B2B using Facebook.

In the meantime I’ll challenge you to try these principles:

  • determine the exact audience you will be targeting
  • “like” the business so you can PM them
  • use open-ended questions to start the ball rolling
  • “pivot” at the correct moment to tell them your story
  • ASK for the permission to contact them again.

Need help on any of these five Steps? Put your Q’s in the comments.

Til then,

Keep Stepping!


The One Day Business Plan

Make Sales Copy Easy

The One Day Business Plan. I like the sound of that, don’t you?

This is actually less a “business plan” and more a sales and marketing plan.

But since the sales and marketing plan is an integral part of a business plan, and I’m going to argue that it’s the most neglected and least understood.

One Day Business Plan

Coffee, a tablecloth, a coupla hours’ work + some ingenuity. The ONE Day Business Plan

The sum and substance of the 24 Hour Business Plan is this:

SELL something NOW.

As in, right now.

Rather than dressing it up, take the most basic version of what you think you want to offer and… write an offer.

And put that offer “out there”.

A Good Enough Plan Now is Better than a Perfect Plan Later

Rather than a slick sales presentation, use a GEO: Good Enough Offer.

If the GEO gets sales, then you not only have a bona fide opportunity…  but you have two of the most valuable assets you can have:

  1. A little CASH in FIST and
  2. The market intelligence that tells you have at least some idea of what sells!

Go for at least three actual sales.

What are actual sales? Sales that DON’T come from your mom or your in-laws. Not from your friend that wants to “help you out”. Not the church group throwing you a bit of charity.

No, these need to be three for-real customers, that are parting with their hard-earned cash.

Because… you’ve made it clear that what you’re selling is worth more to them than the money they’re spending.

Use the cheap (or free!) platforms that are available to you. Offer something for sale.

To be blunt, but truthful… you oughtta  quit trying to do it perfectly; just throw some shit on the wall and see what sticks.


Okay, let’s break it down. What do you have to sell, and what platform should you use to put up your Good Enough Offer?


Products are physical deliverables.

From your used exercise bike (my favorite example) to gift boxes to donuts, products take the least time to sell.

If you have :

  1. Access to something of value and
  2. a way to communicate to folks that value that thing,

…you’ve got a business.

Know where to get 1000 paintballs for $20, and a group of folks accustomed to buying paintballs for $40? Yer off to the races! Buy boxes, ship boxes, collect the diff.

All you need to do is cultivate a buying list and you have a very NON-time-consuming biz opportunity.

Unfortunately, if you are making the product yourself it’s time-intensive anyway. But wherever you’re starting, use these easy ways to begin to market your product:

Platforms. Use your computer or your phone. List your stuff on Craiglist (or the Craigslist Pro app), eBay (or the eBayMobile app), Wallapop, LetGo, Etsy, Carousell, VarageSale, Decluttr. There might be some other apps or sites to use in your area or for your particular kind of product.

Also, for folks that sell products on Craigslist ya might also try NextDoor or Facebook neighborhood-based selling groups.

Words that Sell: Don’t feel the need to be fancy. List the item, the price, your contact info. Easy as pie.

If you can post a picture of the item, or preferably a picture of a HUMAN enjoying the product, that’s a plus.  Answer questions promptly and see if you can get PAID.

Follow Up. MOST of all business that’s done, anywhere, is repeat business. Yours or someone else’s. Make sure it’s yours; get the names and contact info of every customer so you can let them know you were thinking about ’em just before their paintballs ran out.


If what you have to offer is a service, you can usually make bank pretty quickly if your service is in demand.

One Day Biz Challenge

At first we used signs to advertise. Now Google serves up customers without charge—NICE! Learn more in the One Day Biz Challenge

If what you offer is local it’s possible to get jobs through Craigslist; some of my first dollars from screen repair came through that venue.

<==Also, signs do pretty well. My son and I made six and before we were finished putting them out, we got our first customer!

Let’s look at other ways to advertise your service:

Fiverr, Upwork, FiverUP, SEOclerk, Damongo, GIGBucks.

Zeerk works like Fiverr but pays commish the same day instead of after a two week delay.

Words That Sell: I like the R,T,O plan: list the (desired) Result, followed by the Time frame in which that result will be delivered, and as if reading your prospect’s mind address the Objection.


“Your lawn will be greener than any of your neighbor’s in five treatments even if you think you have a brown thumb”
“Get a job offer on Indeed  in two weeks, even if you think your resume is too weak”
“Lose 15 pounds in 15 days and still enjoy your favorite foods”.

Now, it should go without saying that you should be able to deliver in the promises written in these beautiful RTO models 😉

WOOP! WOOP! Profound statement alert:
{{{Words make people do things, especially things they already want to do.}}}
So learn how to write offers.


Know stuff?

If you know something that people are interested to learn, a great way to make a quick $100-$1000 is to offer a class.

Nothing like an event tailor-made for your market to give your business a shot in the arm

Nothing like an event tailor-made for your market to give your business a shot in the arm…

Most recently I used a Facebook event page to promote a ladies’ self-defense class.

11 participants X $45 = dang near five hundred bucks for a three-hour class.

I already had the location so the only overhead was a 24 pack of bottled water.

Now, it’s not bragging when you know you’ve done something good for someone else, that they coldn’t do for themselves, that you charged them for. It’s just good business.

Words make people do things, especially things they want to do.

Words that Sell:

The RTO formula isn’t the only template that works. I also like the “For… I will” copy that works so well for services on Fiverr.

It doesn’t have to be Fiverr, you understand; just list what you will do and for what price.


“For $5 I will write a romantic poem for your Valentine’s card”
“For $20 plus gas I will rent my motorcycle to you for six hours”
“For $100 I will design you a killer logo and upload it to all your social media properties”

Don’t Forget the Most Important Part of Your Business Plan

I mentioned it before in this post: the most important part of your One Day Business Plan is the followup after you get three honest-to-God customers.

With all these ways and means to sell, it’s easy as falling off a log to make a little bank. But remember, the money is NOT in your product. It’s in your market.

Making money afterward is even EASIER than the log drop if you know what you’re doing.

Here’s the most overlooked, underrated and most VITAL SECRET about making a business successful. It’s realizing that every single sale you make is an introduction. Every relationship you nurture makes you closer to financial freedom.

Yes, I’m talking about your customer listTHE most valuable asset any business can possibly have.

So when you make a sale, be sure to save the contact information of your buyer… and remain in contact.

It’s easiest to make a sale to an existing customer. Just give them more of what they already want.

BIG truth… It doesn’t have to be what you sold them in the first place. It just needs to be something they want.

If you deserve their trust, they will buy from you again.



4 Steps to Make Your Word of Mouth Advertising Blow UP!

In today’s two minute read, discover 4 Steps to Make Your Word of Mouth Advertising BLOW UP!
(uh, in a good way 😉 )
Heya, Steppers! Ready to do one thing that makes your business better today?
Woudja appreciate tne powerful strategy to make your word of mouth advertising go sky high,
…that makes everything else you’re doing to market your business better, or unnecessary?
Mm. Thought so.
==> Bullet list, first thing in the morn:
  • It’s really, REALLY important to get feedback about your business.
  • It’s critical to get postive reviews as well. 
  • And the lifeblood of new customer acquisition is having glowing testimonials from your existing customer base.
  • Finally, you gots to have word of mouth, dawg. Get referrals, your cheapest and best way to score more business
SO, my favorite Stepper…
Howza bout getting ALL FOUR ^  key pieces of effective word-of-mouth advertising, in one fell swoop?
“Wooohooo!” I hear ya saying. “NOW you’re talking…”
So one of my SS101 marketing clients is a chiropractor. Recently, we sent his patients a four questions survey. As a result he has 48 reviews on Google My Business, Facebook, and Yelp.
That pile of word of mouth advertising happened to increase his profits, even in the middle of a huge transition for his business.
All this because I sent ONE carefully worded email to his customer base, and had him follow an easy step-by-step…
(…and you know I’m all about those step-by-steps, don’tcha Steppers!)
Okay. So here’s how to get a huge pile of feeback,postive reviews, and glowing testimonials:
  1. Buy a gift. In my chiropractor’s case it was an Emerson 50″ HD TV, about $300.
  2. Send an email to your existing customers. Explain you NEED feedback, and that if they take a two-minute, four question survey they get their name in the hat to win the prize
  3. Put this four-question survey in SurveyMonkey (it’s free) and let the games begin!
Oh. At this point it might be good to tell you what the four questions are…
You’ll want to personalize them a bit for your particular biz,  but don’t complicate them.
Stick to just these four questions.
Here ya go:
  • What problem did you first call us to solve?
  • How did we solve it for you?
  • How did it make you feel to have this solution?
  • Can we quote you on that? 🙂 Would you post a review, and/or would it be okay to tell others what you said about our service?
Lookee. Feedback, reviews, and testimonials quick as ya please.
And sometimes this quickie contest leads to new business… referrals… as well.
And, BONUS! Ya might notice that each review/testimonial follows a template.
The perfect “problem-solution-feelings”  format, that lends itself perfectly to your copywriting.
Now, some critics of this method might say that you are paying for reviews.
(Uh, I’m thinking…yeah… soooo…?)
But the plain truth is that while you ARE kinda fishing for compliments, you will get valuable feedback from negative comments too. Which is perfectly fine.
Use that intel with the right frame of mind, striving to improve your service (or in some cases, to weed out problem customers… I’ve done that too). Just know that feedback, both negative and positive is vital to your biz.
Meanwhile, utilize that postive feedback, mmmk..?
Without stretching the imagination you can see that feedback becomes the basis for:
  • Discovering your niche and your USP
  • Testimonials you can sprinkle into your ad copy
  • Reviews that build credibility and visibility to your biz!
Can ya dig it?
Ah, but Grasshopper. Remember that wisdom without action is dead.
Your mission, should you decide to accept it, is to use the four questions method to populate your copy.
Word of mouth advertising is both the cheapest AND the most effective way to score scads of new bizness.
But you have to be purposeful about it, or the next guy will run you the h*ll over.
Let me know what you find out about marketing and improving YOUR biz with these simple steps.
Til then,
Keep Stepping!


Install Habits: Increase Success in Business and Life

Welcome back! In the last installment of this series, we visited the phenomenon of “ego depletion”.

Willpower has a limit. No matter how “Strong willed” a person is, there’s a breaking point where he or she reaches for the donuts, or the pipe, or the bottle.

Whatever YOUR weak point is… whether it’s procrastination (guilty!), temper, or your habits will always reveal it.

Now, this post is not going to be concerned with defeating bad habits.

That’s a post for another blog.

Instead, we’ll be going after developing the behaviors you want to have.

Why Install “Good” Habits?

As a serial entrepreneur, I’ve found that only a few key habits really matter to get a business up and running.

Among those habits:

  • A daily ritual of “you” time that refreshes and energizes you before the day’s onslaught of stress
  • A habit of connecting regularly with existing customers about their needs and getting feedback
  • Daily reading through the ads and marketing of people in similar markets (including competitors) to glean ideas
  • Testing every part of the sales process (the ‘funnel’) to detect bottlenecks
  • Tweaking ad copy to anticipate and answer customer’s objections
  • Documenting processes and procedures to save time in the future

Your own business will have its own set of important tasks beside these crucial, basic ones… but the more important thing with ANY task that you as an entrepreneur undertake is this:


So how does an entrepreneur make sure to do the few important things instead of the many urgent ones?

After all, owning a business may seem like one fire after another needs putting out, depleting you of the necessary willpower to do what’s needed every day.

How to Install Good Habits

Every New Year’s Day or right around it, we promise ourselves to do better. I’m going to eat right. I’m going to exercise. I’m going to take that risk. I’m going to… fill in the blank.

But by Valentine’s Day that resolution is a dry husk of nothing.

This is because of ego depletion… every decision we make, even ones that are in our own best interest… COST us something. And at one point or another we just decide the price is too high and give up.

How do we install automatic behaviors that don’t drain the decision-making tank?

How do we “stick” to a habit and make it part of our daily routine?

Introducing  the Tiny Habits Method

B.J. Fogg, a behavioral scientist dedicated to research about forming positive habits has a unique model.

There are three key components:

  1. Difficulty (perceived)
  2. Motivation
  3. Triggers

One obstacle to forming a habit is the target behavior’s (perceived) difficulty.

For example, if you don’t already have the fitness habit… going to the gym seems like an overdue visit to the dentist.

You imagine everyone making fun of you for not being more fit already.

You dread the effort of learning the newest exercise routine.

You think about how sore you’re going to feel… and haven’t even done a single crunch.

B.J. Fogg’s model shows that even with the best intentions, the perceived difficulty makes establishing a new habit hard potatoes.

It’s easy to slip out of the program when the perception is, “MAN! This is gonna be soooo hard.”

The second factor is motivation.

In my case, I recently suffered a stroke. I’ve got to change my diet, levels of stress, and other lifestyle adjustments. The motivation is HIGH.

But in the case of most 48 year old non-smokers in good shape… the motivation to change may not be as urgent.

If your insurance doesn’t think you’re at risk for a stroke, you probably don’t be that motivated to stick with the New Year’s rez.

The third factor is a trigger.

The trigger presents the reminder to do the behavior before it becomes a deeply ingrained habit.

Whether that’s as simple as putting your running shoes in the doorway, or as drastic as having a sponsor for your AA meetings… the trigger to DO a certain something at a certain time is crucial too.

The Fogg Behavior Model “FBM” does a great job of visually predicting whether your target behavior stands a chance of becoming a habit.

What Determines if You’ll be Successful at Starting a New Habit?

SO again: difficulty (perceived), motivation, and a trigger.

Respecting these three factors makes the job of installing a new habit a breeze.

I’ve been using the B.J. Fogg Behavior Model with pushups.

As part of my recovery from a stroke, physical exercise is a must. My goal is to get to 100 pushups, a performance level I enjoyed as recently as three years ago.

The problem is that I’ve let go my level of performance, and need to regain the habit of daily pushups.

The “willpower” method of installing the habit is destined to fail if I try to do too much.

  • Perceived difficulty of doing 60 pushups: HARD.
  • Perceived difficulty of doing FIVE pushups… much easier.

Next, the motivation: I recognize the necessity of being more fit, and know that it will help with my recovery.

Furthermore,  being successful at installing this habit will build confidence that I might be able to install other, just as important behaviors.

Motivation is often expressed as pain.

In my case, the pain of consequences is greater than the pain of change.

  • Motivation to recover the power of speech by physical exercise and other habits: HIGH
  • Motivation to be complacent and keep the status quo: LOW

Finally, the trigger.

B.J. Fogg recommends taking an existing habitual behavior and linking it to the desired, target behavior.

In my case… I brush my teeth most days 😉

That’s a perfect trigger.

The formula is: “After I brush my teeth, I will do at least five pushups.”


Now, here’s the deal:

Because I get off top dead center and do five pushups… often I end up doing MORE.

But it’s the (perceived) low difficulty and high reward, coupled with the reminder of the trigger… that gets me doing the habit.

Faithfulness to the habit is the hard part (which we just gave you a hack for persuading your mind to accept)… afterward, the habit keeps you going and hopefully, upward and onward to greater success.

I’m reminded of Jesus’ mustard seed example. He said that if you had the faith of a mustard seed, you could move a mountain.

Well, sometimes the mountain that needs moving is ME.


And rather than doing it one mountain load at a time… It’s easier and more likely to result in success if we start by planting one tiny seed at a time.

Okay, Steppers! Your turn: I want to challenge you to go to B.J. Fogg’s site and take the challenge to establish three positive behaviors that will help you in your business and in your personal life.