ISSUE #007



Dare To Be

Sell More
with order bump

Idea Sex
to make you rich

Hate To Write
blog posts? Do this.

Exclusive Interview:

Speaker, Entrepreneur


  Abe Cherian  

  Webpreneur Media  


Do You See What I See?


Dear Valued Subscriber,


Welcome to the First Edition of 2021!

A master was instructing his pupils and one day he said to them –

“When you look at me what do see? When you look in a mirror what do you see?”

The pupils were somewhat baffled by this cryptic statement, and after conferring amongst themselves one went to the master and asked - “Master, we don’t understand, what are you trying to teach us?”

The master replied, “It’s simple, when you look at me and when you look at yourselves in a mirror, you are not seeing and accepting me as I am or even yourself as you truly are, but rather you are seeing me as you expect me to be, and see yourself as you have been told that you are. When you talk to a stranger on the street, have you not already formed in your mind a perception of how that interaction will go, who that person is or will be to you? You see them not as they truly are but as you expect them to be.”

When you started your business, you had expectations of what you wanted it to be and what you wanted to get out of it, and whilst having goals to work to is admirable you don’t want them to govern everything and stop you changing and evolving as you move forward. When you put yourself first in business, not in a selfish, arrogant way but rather when you make sure that you are taken care of, that your needs are being met, that feeling flows out to the customer. But at the same time you need to see those customers not as you expect them to be but as they truly are, and by understanding them and that process better you can adapt yourself and your business to fit their experience, and increase your success.

When your personal and business needs are all being met, then you are in a place of well-being, and that well-being will reflect on how you see others.

We’re told to put others before ourselves, and whilst that is true in many circumstances, you must also ensure that you have a level of self-care, and a true recognition of those around you rather than a perception of them. Authenticity in this line of work is key. Build up your self-worth and integrity, then spill it onto the products, while aligning your true vision with the true needs of the customers.

As we all know, what you push out is reflected upon you even more so. Just like sunlight reflecting off a mirror seems more dazzling than the sunlight itself.

Wishing you the best in 2021!


News & Trends



How COVID-19 Has Changed Social Media Engagement

You can use this information to update your strategy and get a sense of how audiences’ priorities and interests have changed during the course of this global pandemic.




Local Businesses Are In Dire Need of Marketing Help

A hot business right now is helping brick and mortar businesses to survive and even thrive during this time. As an online marketing expert, you have the knowledge to help them with their online presence.




The African Alibaba!

You’re probably familiar with Alibaba and its sister sites, Taobao and Tmall. This is where you go to find products from millions of different merchants that you can then sell at a mark-up to customers through your own website or places like Amazon and eBay. brings African merchants together with buyers in much the same way.

And because WaysToCap and their African trading partners are somewhat newer on the international trading scene, it can be easier to find good deals that will yield plenty of profit.




New Competition To Gmail? You Decide.

Basecamp has a new email service called HEY — and it could be a game-changer

If someone emails your @HEY address for the first time, you decide if it gets through. Their email will land in The Screener, which is kind of like screening phone calls.


This is where it's up to you. Thumbs up or thumbs down. Yes and it's in, No and you’ll never see it again.

It sort of makes even the best email marketer cringe, doesn't it? But then again, Hey isn't exactly free.




How Do You Compare? 2020 Email Marketing Statistics Compilation

Dave Chaffey of Smart Insights published an in-depth study on email marketing, gathering information from several email-service providers.

The average open rate, across all industries, varies from 14.79 percent (Constant Contact) to 21.33 percent (MailChimp).

The average click-through rate ranges between 2.98 percent (Get Response) to 6.99 percent (Constant Contact).

See what else he found after analyzing hundreds of millions of sends:




Podcasting Interview Cheat Sheets

This free PDF from Paul Hollins reveals several insider tips to doing interviews on your podcast as well as giving you two pages of interview questions for your guests.

Frequent podcast questions it answers include:


  1. What kind of questions should I ask?

  2. What if I ask something STUPID?

  3. What if I RUN OUT of questions?

  4. What is the ideal duration for an interview?

  5. What should you ask your interview subject to provide ahead of time?

  6. And how do you wrap up the interview without sounding awkward?

The two pages of questions to get you started are absolute gold and should be in every podcasters’ bag of tricks.



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Dare To Be Different. Gain An Invincible Edge


Some online marketers just naturally do far better than others. Why is that?

They get heard, they are remembered from one week to the next, they are followed socially online and they sell stuff. A LOT of stuff.

So the question is, how do they stand out from everyone else in their niche? How do they keep from looking like everyone else, and thus becoming nearly invisible like everyone else? I’ve been watching, and here are three things I’ve noticed that they all have in common and how to apply them in your own marketing.

To stand out…

1. Say something no one else is saying, but then again, don’t be a contrarian just for the sake of being a contrarian.

What is every other marketer doing or saying? And what is the opposite of that? See if you can legitimately take a firm stand in the other direction from everyone else. Make your case with studies, data, experience and anything else you have on hand. Guaranteed you’ll get noticed.

2. Differentiate your content through your personal stories. Don’t be afraid to open up. Share everything that is relevant.

Your stories are yours and yours alone. They make you who you are, and they also make you real, compelling and interesting. Use stories to illustrate your points and show the real you to earn the trust of your readers.

3. Always remember that your website, your products, your content and your message isn’t about you. I know it seems like it is, and I appear to be contradicting what I just said about being different and telling your own stories. But everything in your marketing – even your personal story – is about your customers.

When creating anything, always think of your customer sitting right in front of you. This is the person you are speaking to and the entire reason for your business to even exist.

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6 Steps To Build a Real Business Online

This is for everyone who has procrastinated on building an at home business and suddenly finds they have the time and the inclination to do it…

…but the thought of creating products, building funnels and recruiting affiliates is just too much.

Step 1: Pick a small, hot niche. Weight loss for women is too big.

Weight loss for women over 50 who work from home and hate dieting and workouts might be good.

Step 2: Write your compelling story. This is YOUR story of why YOU are in this niche.

For example, when you were 55 you were diagnosed with diabetes and the doctor said you were going to die in 5 years if you didn’t change your ways. Because you were working from home and had NO motivation to workout or eat right, this stuff was HARD, but here’s what you did… and now look how far you’ve come!

Your story can also be someone else’s story – your parent, partner, sibling, best friend, whatever. But you need a compelling story of why you are spending your time in this niche. It will connect you to readers in a way nothing else can.

Step 3: Create great content to give away for FREE. In fact, give away ALL of your content. Use it to get subscribers, to engage people on social media, to get them on your blog and other people’s blogs and so forth. Give it all away. This way you have ZERO pressure to create products and funnels but you are still perceived as being the expert.

Step 4: Sell affiliate programs. Find the programs that deliver excellent value and perfectly suit your readers. These are the programs you can recommend 1000% percent to your list because you know they do what they way they do. Then use the ‘know, like and trust’ you’ve been building with your audience to promote these programs.

Step 5: Have fun with what you’re doing. If it isn’t fun then you’re not doing it right.

I don’t mean ‘Friday night get drunk’ fun, I mean the exhilarating satisfaction of putting out another piece of content that gets raves, helps someone and so forth. Find your reasons to keep doing this and review those reasons often to stay motivated and keep your content interesting and exciting.

Step 6: Optional – create your own courses, coaching and so forth. Do this if and when you want to. If things are going well, I venture that in 6 to 12 months you will be itching to make your own product. By then you will have enough experience in your niche to know what people want, what can sell and how you will sell it.

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How To Sell 50% More With An Order Bump

Well isn’t that nice of the cashier to ask that? Of course you would like her to do that, and you might even thank her for being so thoughtful.

Congrats, you’ve just discovered how to increase the size of your orders on your website.

The most difficult part of marketing is getting the sale. But once someone has committed to making the purchase, it’s relatively easy to get them to upgrade. They’ve already decided to buy. That decision is made. Purchasing more simply reconfirms their commitment to that decision.

Plus, you’re giving them a great deal, so what’s not to love?

Your customer has added your $99 course to the cart. You ask if they would like to add 4 weeks of email coaching for just $49 more, making the total sale $148 instead of just $99.

Just to be clear, an order bump happens before someone clicks, “buy now.” It adds an additional item or upgrade to the shopping cart before the checkout is complete.

        You walk into McDonald’s and order a burger, fries and a drink. But before you check out, the cashier asks you a helpful question. “Would you like me to Supersize your meal for you?”

In contrast, an upsell happens after someone has completed the purchase. The upsell is usually on the thank you page, and it can be done with a single click so the customer doesn’t need to enter their credit card details again.

When Should You Use Order Bumps vs Upsells?

Order bumps work best when the offer is a continuation or upgrade of the current product that is about to be purchased.

For example, if you’re selling software, then the order bump might be an extended license that allows the user to own it for a lifetime rather than renewing it each year. Or it could be a set of videos that help the user to install and use the software, in case this sort of thing is new to them. Or maybe it’s resell or PLR rights to the software.

On the other hand, 1-click upsells are best when the offer is complementary to the original product.

Let’s say you sell a course on how to drive traffic using Facebook. An upsell could be another course on how to drive traffic using TikTok or Instagram.

Examples of Order Bumps

When you purchase electronics, you will almost always see an order bump for a warranty plan. For example, when you purchase an iPad you’ll be offered ‘AppleCare’ for two years of tech support and accidental damage coverage.

When you purchase from Omaha Steaks, there is an order bump for Filet Mignon at a discount.

The brand Thirty-One uses a slightly different approach in their order bump, placing it on every product page. The visitor has two choices – “add to cart” or “personalize’. They’re selling more by offering the personalization service to increase the value of each sale and they are also subconsciously making their buyers think of who they can send a personalized gift to.

The #1 Reason Why Order Bumps are so Effective

Just as your customer is about to click the buy button, they get a chance to upgrade their order to something even better.

And because the order bump is personalized to exactly what the customer wants, it can make the original offer even more compelling.

On top of that, most people are impulsive buyers. Presenting an offer upgrade just as they’re about to buy vastly increases the chance they will accept it.

Think about what happens at a new car dealership. The customer might agonize over whether or not to make the purchase. But once they become committed to their chosen vehicle, it’s very easy for the dealership to sell all kinds of add-ons that contribute significantly to the sales price and the customer’s satisfaction.

Once people make a decision, they will reaffirm to themselves that they have made the right decision. And taking the order bump is one more way they show themselves that they’re on the right path.

10 Order Bumps to Add to Your Offers

While this list is not comprehensive, it does give you an excellent starting point in figuring out what offers you can make to your customers in the form of order bumps.

1. An Additional, Different Format

This one is so simple – for example, if your customer is purchasing a pdf, offer them an audio version or even a physical copy in addition to the pdf.

2. Related Accessories

This should be something that enhances the function of the original product. For example, if you’re selling a course on how to approach the right people at companies in a specific niche in order to do deals, the order bump might be the contact info for 100 of these executives.

Or if you’re selling a course on something, the order bump might be a 20 page pdf on how to learn anything quickly.

3. Personal Assistance

This works especially well if you are selling courses and programs. Your order bump could be something like email support for any questions they have, group conference calls to answer questions, or a private Facebook Group.

4. Community or Partners

Again, if you are selling courses and programs, the biggest obstacle is getting your customers to take action on the product they’re purchasing. Offering them a private community they can join where they are in touch with others learning the same material can be extremely helpful. It also provides them with a way to make contacts.

And something I don’t see very often but can be even more effective is assigning accountability partners. When you pair two or more people together to stay in touch with each other and keep each other accountable, the work tends to get done at a much higher rate.

Why is this important? If your customers are not just buying, but also USING your programs and courses, they are much happier with their purchase and MUCH more likely to purchase more programs and courses from you in the future.

5. Expedited Shipping

The company I purchase supplements from offers expedited shipping for just an additional $2.99. It’s a great deal and I get it every time.

Faster shipping can mean two things. Either it gets shipped faster, or it gets shipped by a faster delivery method, such as USPS Priority Mail instead of Ground.

6. Auto-Delivery

If you sell anything that requires repeat purchases, such as foods, supplies, or supplements, you can offer monthly delivery through an order bump. This won’t increase the size of the initial order, but it will increase the number of times something is ordered.

7. Maintenance or Support

Does your product require maintenance? Upgrades? Support? Electronics and cars almost always have order bumps for extended warranties. Which of your products needs these things, too?

Warranties and protection plans are similar and also a great thing to offer as order bumps.

8. Preferred Members Group

You could create an insider’s circle or preferred members program that offers discounts, free shipping, exclusive deals and so forth. Amazon Prime is a good example of this. And many companies offer a 10% discount on all purchases made within a year of purchasing a preferred membership.

9. Upgrades

This can mean so many different things. For example, if someone purchases a resell license, you can offer a PLR license as an upgrade.

Or let’s say you offer 2 or 3 different versions of your product, software or service. If they choose one of the lesser versions, on the order page you can present them with a bump up to the next level. Odds are they were on the fence anyway, so asking them if they wouldn’t like to move up one level will often get a yes, especially if you throw in some small incentive.

10. Bulk Discounts

If you’re selling tangible products, then this can work really well. Offer them 3 of the item they’re purchasing for a reduced per item unit. Or offer them the second unit for half price.

In some cases this can work with digital, too. Let’s say you have a series of videos or books. Maybe it’s a series of 5 books, each building on the other but also acting as stand-alone products. Your customer adds one book to the cart, and on the order page you offer a special deal to get all 5 books right now. Because odds are they will be back for more anyway, so why not grab them now?

Final Notes on Order Bumps

The tricky part is to keep the order bump simple while still doing your best to sell it.

1. Go for a clear and concise message that covers the big benefit of getting the order bump. Use a short headline that grabs attention. Be ultra-specific in what they’re getting. Show how it is useful to the purchase they are already making. Create a sense of urgency that this is THE time to grab the offer – not later. And if applicable, show how it is unique.

That’s a lot to fit into 2 to 4 sentences. You’ll have to play with this until you get it just right, then test it and adjust accordingly.

2. Try placing your order bump in a box outlined in a bright contrasting color, such as red or orange.

3. If the number is over 50%, make a note of what percentage of people take the order bump.

6. To say yes to the offer, have your customers check a box that says something like, “Yes! Upgrade My Order”. You might highlight these words and the checkbox in pale yellow to make them stand out.

7. Using a picture in the order bump box can work well, if appropriate. For example, if the order bump is for a book, use a pic of the book cover.

8. If appropriate to your order page, try placing the order bump box directly in line with the order form itself, with a button underneath that says to ship your order now. This makes it seem a very natural part of the ordering process.

9. You might start the sales copy of your order bump with something like, “One time offer, only $12.95” in red and underlined. Test everything.

10. Keep the cost of the order bump lower than the cost of the original product, usually 50-60% lower. There are exceptions, such as if you’re offering a special deal on 3 of the item instead of just the 1 they added to cart.

11. As mentioned earlier, test. Changing the look, position and ad copy of the order bump can sometimes make a tremendous difference in conversions.

One note. Some marketers are afraid that by offering an order bump they will be chasing away sales. While I’ve found this is very seldom true, it is important that you frame your order bump in such a way that it appears to be a very good deal for your customer, and also something they can easily turn down by simply ignoring it.

If you do add an order bump and sales do decline (possible but HIGHLY unlikely) it might be that you’ve made the wrong offer. Start over with a different offer and see what happens.

Bottom Line. If you’re not already testing order bumps on all of your sales, maybe it’s time you started. Depending on the offer and the price, it’s entirely possible you could add as much as 10-50% to your bottom line simply by mastering the order bump process.


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Is TikTok Marketing For You?

TikTok is growing fast – it’s been downloaded 1.5 billion times and has 500 million active users who spend an average of 52 minutes per day on the platform. 90% of active users access TikTok at least once per day. Users are overwhelmingly young, with 66% of users under the age of 30.

Yet just 4% of marketers use TikTok.

TikTok users upload videos of 15 seconds or shorter or create and share 60 second stories-type videos.

Users don’t need to follow anybody – they can simply open their app and start playing videos or search by preferred topic.

Marketing on TikTok

You’ve got three main options for marketing on TikTok:

1: Create your own channel and upload relevant videos

2: Work with influencers to reach their audience

3: Pay to advertise

You can also do a combination of any and all of the above.

Hashtag Challenges

These are highly popular and a great way to engage users. Create a challenge along with an appropriate #-tag name. Users then upload videos doing the challenge.

It’s not unheard of to get 5,000 to 10,000 submissions and 10 million engagements if this is done by a celebrity or if it really catches fire.

If you’re not a celebrity, work with an influencer to get your hashtag challenge launched.

User-Generated Content

TikTok users like the full immersive experience. They don’t want to just watch; they also want to participate.

Encourage your customers to share videos of themselves using or interacting with your products in some way to get a high buy-in.

Traditional Influencer Marketing

Find influencers that are a good match for your product and then leave it to them to create the content.

Don’t expect the content they generate to look ultra-professional. To your marketer’s eye it’s going to look downright amateurish, but originality and fun are what work best on TikTok, not high production values.

Paid Advertising

Infeed native videos are 9 to 15 seconds long and support website clicks and app downloads. Impact of video is measured by number of clicks, impressions, CTR, video views, play duration and video interactions of shares and comments.

Brand Takeovers

These are exclusive to one brand every day. Images, animated GIFs and videos can be used with embedded links connected to landing pages or challenges and hashtags within the platform.

Bottom Line: If your audience is under 30 and you have products that are a good fit for video, TikTok could be the next best place for you to go.

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From Dismal Failure To Extreme Success

Did you just lose your job?

Did your business just close?

Are you feeling like less than a success?

You’re not alone -and in fact, you’re in very good company.

These folks all experienced failure before reaching their ultimate success.

1. This guy dropped out of Harvard and co-owned a failed business called Traf-o-Data. Not an auspicious start. But then Bill Gates went on to build the world’s largest software company.

2. This aspiring writer received this rejection notice: “We are not interested in science fiction which deals with negative utopias. They do not sell.” His first novel was rejected by 30 different publishers, causing him to give up and throw it in the trash. His wife retrieved it and urged him to submit it yet again. Stephen King has since published more than 50 books, all worldwide bestsellers.

3. This 9-year old student was told by teachers that he was slow in the head. Then he was expelled from school for being rebellious, and Zurich Polytechnic School refused to admit him as a student. But Albert Einstein went on to revolutionize physics and win the Nobel Prize.

4. This young performer was told by his own manager, “You ain’t goin’ nowhere, son. You ought to go back to drivin’ a truck.” Fortunately, Elvis ignored the manager, believed in himself and the rest is history.

5. This young boy was told by his teachers that he was too stupid to learn anything. Then he was fired not once but twice for not being productive. But if you’ve got a light on in your room right now, you can thank Thomas Edison for not believing his critics.

6. This young man from the Bahamas was told by a casting director, “Why don’t you stop wasting people ‘s time and go out and become a dishwasher or something?” Ignoring the director, Sidney Portier went on to become the first black actor to win the Oscar for best actor.

7. This basketball player missed more than 9,000 shots, lost almost 300 games, and 26 times he was trusted to take the game-winning shot and missed. Of course, we’re talking about Michael Jordan, who scored 32,292 points in the NBA.

8. This aspiring movie creator was rejected from the University of Southern California 3 times because of his poor grades in high school. But he’s directed 51 films and won three Oscars. Steven Spielberg’s wealth is estimated to be $3 billion, and he’s now a trustee and honorary degree recipient of the university that refused to take him as a student.

9. This newscaster was publicly humiliated when she was removed from her job and demoted to host of a low-rated talk show because she was, ‘too emotional for news’. She then became so famous, she only needs one name – Oprah.

10. This baseball player struck out 1330 times, more than any other player in Major League Baseball. But Babe Ruth also hit 714 home runs and even today, every baseball fan knows his name.

11. This aspiring entertainer was told he couldn’t act, couldn’t sing, was going bald and could only dance a little. Fred Astaire used those criticisms as the fire upon which he built his colossal film, singing and dancing success.

12. This singing group was rejected for a recording contract because the label Decca Records said, “We don’t like their sound and guitar music is on the way out.” EMI signed the Beatles and they became the best-selling music group of all time.

13. This young man dropped out of Oregon’s Reed College after just one semester. Then he quit his job and backpacked around India while taking psychedelic drugs. Finally, when he started a company, he accepted a salary of just $1. Yet when Steve Jobs died in 2011, he was worth $8.3 billion.

14. This 22-year old was fired from a Missouri newspaper for “not being creative enough.” His venture called Laugh-o-Gram Studios went bankrupt. But Walt Disney went on to be nominated for 59 Academy Awards, winning 32 of them. He still holds the record for the most Oscars won by an individual.

15. This person hit hard times during the 2020 Covid-19 pandemic. But they persevered and went on to unparalleled success in the months and years that followed. I am, or course, referring to you, and you get to write the rest of your own story, starting right now. :-)


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How "Idea Sex" Can Make You Rich

Fortunes are made when people think out of the box and ask questions no one else is asking. What happens when you pair X with Y to make Z? Sometimes nothing happens and other times fortunes are made. Pairing two ideas together to make a third is ‘idea sex.’ I don’t know who coined the term, but I’ve heard James Altucher use it often.

The founder of Netflix had to pay Blockbuster $50 for a long overdue movie. Then he went to the gym, got on the treadmill and started thinking. His gym membership was always the same amount of money, regardless of how often or how seldom he went to the gym. Why couldn’t a movie membership work the same way? Movie membership (X) plus gym payment system (Y) equaled Netflix.

What if you combine pop culture with art? Andy Worhol asked that question and became famous.

What if you pair the keto diet with intermittent fasting? You get Speed Keto, a Clickbank program that I’ve heard is doing half a million dollars of business every month.

Sometimes it’s simply about asking the right questions:

Zip Car bought a fleet of cars and then allowed members to drive them around town. What if you had a car business like Zip Car but you didn’t own the actual cars? Uber was born.

Walt Disney was struggling. He had two movies made and reviews were awesome, but it was the depression and people weren’t going to the movies. What if you put Mickey Mouse on a watch?

They sold something like 3 million of them in the first year. And guess what? Walt Disney had to be talked into doing it by an entrepreneur who thought it was a good idea. Merchandising was born that day because someone asked the question, “Why not put a famous character on a watch?”

Ask yourself questions no one else is asking and you might find some surprising answers.

Where do you get ideas? Everywhere. Right now, I’m looking at Worldometer.

I was going to ask you to put on your marketer / entrepreneur hat while we review some stats, but I realized that many of them are moving too fast to pin down. I simply could not type the stat as fast as it changed, and by the time you read this they will have multiplied again anyway.

So, I’m going to simply give you the link, and then make a few observations:

Notice the world’s population and how it’s rapidly increasing. Yes, even with coronavirus, the world’s population is out of control. This means we have an ever-increasing market for certain things…

…things like food.

Notice that there are over 842 million undernourished people in the world.

There are also over 1.7 billion overweight people in the world, and 756 million obese people.

Something is wrong here. As a marketer, can we find ways to help the overweight people to eat less, and to get the food in the hands of the undernourished people at the same time?

Certainly we can sell weight loss programs. As I write this, $181 million has been spent TODAY on weight loss programs.

Perhaps if we take the $181 million per day for weight loss programs and use half that money to give food to the poor, we might be making a fantastic income while changing the world.

What if you were to start a weight loss membership site that does exactly that?

So far today as I write this, 731 million tweets have been sent, along with 247 billion emails. Imagine if you could make one tenth of one penny on every email – what might that look like? How could you make it happen?

Look at the numbers on water and energy. There are some shocking stats here – what questions can we ask that lead us to think in new, profitable and life changing ways?

Take a look at the health numbers. Health and wellness is a huge market. People need help knowing how to be healthy and how to stay safe. Is there something here you can do?

The public education expenditure number for today alone is moving so fast I can’t read the last 6 digits, but so far it’s $9 billion. For. The. Day. Maybe you can make courses for children. If you’re not comfortable teaching, pair up with a teacher who is and make virtual courses that you then market. The company Teachable produces millionaires every year just from posting courses on their site.

Twice as many bicycles are being produced than cars. If you’re knowledgeable about cycling, this is a HUGE market you can tap into.

Then there’s videogames. So far today $279 million has been spent on video games, while there are 801 million people with no access to safe drinking water. You could work with a video game manufacturer to donate money from every game to build wells.

Or perhaps you produce your own video games (you can hire people to make the actual games) and as each player unlocks levels in the games, money is donated for wells. The players would get the immense satisfaction that playing the games is actually helping people in the real world.

Last of all, only 937,810 new book titles have been published so far this year. Compared to a lot of the other numbers, this one seems low to me. Can you write a book? Can you write several books? By having more than one book, if one becomes a best seller then readers will naturally want to read your other books, too.

There are all kinds of interesting stats on the Worldometer page, but this is just one website. Ideas are everywhere. Try idea sex, which again is taking two ideas to come up with something new. And ask off the wall zany questions no one else is asking and then find the answers.

As James Altucher says, finding good ideas is easy when you exercise your idea muscle. Just write down 10 new ideas every day. EVERY day. It’s not easy at first because you’re not used to thinking this way.

But keep at it, and pretty soon the ideas will be falling like rain. And in those ideas is a million dollars, or maybe a lot more. You just have to find the idea and then act on it.


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Hate Writing Content? Do This Instead

You’re going to think I’m splitting hairs on this one.

And maybe I am.

But if you’re tired of writing articles and blogposts, I’d like to propose a mind shift that’s helped me out immensely.

Instead of writing articles, write a column.

If you’ve read newspapers and magazines, then you’ve seen columns all your life.

Ann Landers and Dear Abby and Dave Barry are all columnists. So are (or were) Erma Bombeck, Maureen Dowd, Amy Goodman, Marilyn vos Savant, Noam Chomsky, Jesse Jackson, Garrison Keillor, William Safire, Salman Rushdie, Bob Woodward and too many others to list.

When you’re writing an article, you’ve got to start from scratch to prove you know what you’re talking about. You have to be an authority or at least quote authorities. You’ve got little or no foundation to stand on because an article, by its very definition, is a stand-alone piece.

This puts pressure on you to prove yourself. Every. Single. Time. And as you’ve probably experienced, that gets really old really fast. You feel like you are standing on the street corner going, “Hey, over here, look at me!”

Who needs that?

But when you’re a columnist, you’re no longer on the street corner vying for attention with thousands of other article writers.

Instead, you’re in your office writing a personal one-to-one piece to your favorite reader.

It’s just you and the person you are talking to. They know you. They like you. And they trust you.

Plus, they look forward to reading what you have to say today.

This is a mind shift. Yes, your columns might look a lot like articles, if articles are written with the confidence of someone who KNOWS people want to read his or her words.

You can think of article writing as having to make a formal presentation to a large group of people who have barely heard of you, versus writing a column as having an intimate conversation with a trusted friend over a cup of coffee.

I can’t tell you what a difference this small shift of perspective has made in my life.

The blank screen no longer scares me. In fact, I can’t wait to sit down and write my latest idea. I have more confidence as I put words to paper. My writing is faster and more stream of consciousness because I no longer feel the hot breath of my creative writing professor breathing down my neck.

Imagine you’ve had a much-loved column in your favorite newspaper or magazine for the last decade. Imagine today you’re writing your latest column. Imagine people eagerly reading it the moment it hits the newsstands or their mailbox.

And then write.

Am I splitting hairs? Maybe. But give it a try and see what being a columnist does for you.

And to get you started, I’ve made a list of some of my favorite column topics. Pair these ideas together with your niche and start writing your next column now.

Column Ideas

News – Your personal take on the biggest news in your niche today.

Their Mistakes – What well known person or company is making a BIG mistake? Why is it a mistake and what should be done instead? Or what are the top 3 mistakes that new people or seasoned pros are making?

Your Mistakes – What bone-headed thing have you done – past or present – and what were the consequences and lesson learned?

Rants – What is driving you absolutely batty in your niche? Why is it driving you crazy, and what should – in your opinion – be done instead?

3 Things to Avoid – What should be avoided and why?

3 Things to Do – Who should do them and why? What’s the benefit of doing them and the consequences of not doing them?

True Stories – Any great story in your niche. Play up the drama if possible but keep the facts accurate (no embellishing.) Bonus for surprise endings or heartstrings tugged.

Steps to X – What are the steps to achieve something awesome?

Monday Morning Quarterback - If you knew then what you know now. Look back on your experience in your niche and find something that you would change if you could.

Pain – Your pain, someone else’s pain or some big problem. Has there been a resolution? Write about it. No resolution or solution yet? Find one or ask your readers for their ideas and then write a follow-up column.

Experiments – Try something such as a new method or technique, take notes and then report on what happened.

True or False – Choose something that everyone believes to be true. Investigate it and determine if it’s real or a myth.

Current Events – Take something that is happening in the world and then tie it to your niche.

Pose a Radical Question – This is a question most people have never thought of, but when you bring it up, it will spark thought and conversation. For example, why are or were things done a certain way? Or what if you combine X with Z? Or what if you take something in a whole new direction?

Secrets – Real secrets, not just things that many people already know. People LOVE secrets and they don’t have to yours. For example, relate how a real-life espionage operation from 20 years ago accidentally impacted your niche in the present in a truly unforeseen way.

Goals – Your goals, their goals, famous people’s goals. How are they achieved? How do people screw up goal setting and goal-getting?

Controversy – Decide in advance how controversial you’re willing to be. Then take a stand and watch the sparks fly.

Tips – But not just any tips. Weird tips. Little known tips. Surprising tips.

Warning Signs – What are the warning signs in your niche that something bad is about to happen? What do you do when you see these signs?

Challenge – Create a challenge for your readers. Make it easy enough that they will do it but challenging enough that it is interesting. Have them report their results to you and write about it in a follow-up column.

You’re not an article writer or a blogpost writer – you’re a columnist. And I can’t wait to read what you write next.

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3 Quick Zoom Tips

While people are getting better at Zoom meetings, there are still a few things we can do to improve the experience for everyone:

1. Don’t use your built-in microphone and speaker. They’re designed to pick up as much information as they can, which will include background noises and voices. Instead, use a wired headset, preferably with a boom mic, because it will pick up just what is in front of the mic.

2. When you are speaking, look a little to the side of your screen. When we look directly at the screen or camera, we get easily distracted by the faces and find it more difficult to formulate what we’re trying to say.

3. Be a little more dramatic and expressive. Theater actors are aware that they have to play to the back row seats, meaning they need bigger facial expressions and gestures to get their point across than if they were playing to an audience of one.

When we’re on Zoom, things like subtle eye cues, nods and chuckles might not be noticed. To give feedback to the speaker that they can see and hear, you’ll want to grin instead of smile, give a thumbs up instead of nodding and laugh instead of chuckling.

Subtlety does not come across well in online meetings, so play things up a bit and become a little more dramatic and expressive to let others know you’re paying attention and not checking your email or zoning out.


Ed Rush


A former fighter pilot who has since become a high flyer in helping everyday people to make more money, become more persuasive, and to enjoy what they do. It's my pleasure this time to welcome five-time number one bestselling author, and internationally recognised speaker, Ed Rush.



"Branding boils down to 'We believe THIS. If you agree, come with us. If not, no worries.' Put your stake in the ground. Then let your tribe gather around." - Eric Bandholz, BeardBrand

“Before you create any more ‘great content,’ figure out how you are going to market it first.” – Joe Pulizzi & Newt Barrett

“By listening, marketing will re-learn how to talk.” – Doc Searls & David Weinburger

“We have technology, finally, that for the first time in human history allows people to really maintain rich connections with much larger numbers of people.” – Pierre Omidyar

“Today it’s not about ‘get the traffic’ — it’s about ‘get the targeted and relevant traffic.’” – Adam Audette

“Marketing’s job is never done. It’s about perpetual motion. We must continue to innovate every day.” – Beth Comstock

“Content is fire. Social media is gasoline.” – Jay Baer

“Content is not king, but a president elected by the votes of those whom it aims to rule.” – Raheel Forooq

 “Do not address your readers as though they were gathered together in a stadium. When people read your copy, they are alone. Pretend you are writing to each of them a letter on behalf of your client.” – David Ogilvy



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Podcasting Primer:

How to Earn Trust, Scale Intimacy and Profit

Part 1


Earning trust on the internet has never been more important than it is today. Without trust, you cannot get followers, subscribers and customers.

And yet pervasive skepticism coupled with short attention spans rule the online world. Where you once could write a 3000 word article and win people’s attention, these days it can take a more personal touch to connect with strangers and turn them into fans.

And podcasting allows you to do exactly that.

With podcasting, you speak directly to your prospect. Your personality can shine through in your voice in a way that is impossible with the written word.

You don’t need to be some fancy speaker, either. You just need to be yourself, to relax, to have a good time and to give plenty of value to your listeners.

Podcasting is easier than creating great looking videos. And your listeners can consume your podcasts while they are doing other things like driving, walking or doing chores.

But Do I Really Need a Podcast?

You already have a website, a blog and a social media presence. You might even have a YouTube channel chock full of your own videos, too. Do you really need a podcast, too?

That depends.

A podcast is a great alternative to video because people can listen to it on the go or while they’re doing something else.

Podcasts can increase your traffic. For example, when you interview someone on your podcast, they’re likely to tell their readers and followers about the podcast, thereby sending you traffic.

Having a podcast can work wonders for building a better relationship with your audience. When they can hear you, they get to know you and like you. They feel more engaged with you and the topic and think of you as being an expert they can trust.

Podcasts can be easier to create than written material or videos. To write an hour’s worth of content can take several hours, whereas recording an hour-long podcast takes an hour plus whatever time you spend getting a guest or outlining your topic.

In short, podcasts help to build your audience, your brand, authority and trust, all without the same effort and ability that writing requires.

What’s Your ‘Why’?

Before you start a podcast, we need to get a couple of things clear, and the first one is figuring out why you even want a podcast.

Is it to get more customers and sales?

Is it to establish yourself as an authority in your niche?

Is it to build relationships with other authorities in your niche?

Is it just for fun, like a hobby you’re passionate about?

While you may have several reasons for podcasting, it’s important to know what they are, because when you know why you’re podcasting, it will be much easier to stay motivated to keep your podcast going.

Who is Your Listener?

Who is the ideal person listening to your podcast? Until you know who you’re targeting and why you’re doing the show, you’ll have a difficult time growing an audience.

Creating a listener avatar is a good way to decide on exactly who you are targeting.

For example, if you’re a dietician, perhaps your avatar is a 42 year old woman with two children and a career who spends 50 hours a week working and commuting while still taking care of the kids and the home. She’s 25 pounds overweight, tired, doesn’t get enough sleep and worries that her health is deteriorating.

If your topic is investments, your avatar might be a 35 year old professional who makes six figures but isn’t putting anything away for retirement yet because she spends her money as soon as she makes it. She realizes she needs to do something now, but she doesn’t know where to start or who to listen to.

Once you have your avatar, you’ll be able to keep your podcast focused and on track, creating engaging content perfectly suited to your audience.

Can You List Your First 15 Episodes?

One of your major goals when doing a podcast has to be providing value to the listeners. Are you entertaining them? Informing them? Both? Or something else?

Your listeners need a reason to listen. They won’t tune in to hear someone ramble about their day or their childhood unless it’s entertaining in some way, or highly informative.

But they will tune in to hear how they can achieve a goal of theirs or solve a problem.

And you need to have enough subject matter to talk about as well. If you can spill all of your secrets on how to lose weight in one or two episodes, then you don’t have a podcast. But if you can bring on guests to talk about other aspects of health, then perhaps you do.

Write down your first 15 potential podcast topics.

Have you got them? Now write down your next 50.

You might want to use the internet to brainstorm. These topics can change later, but the point is to see if you’ll have enough material to sustain a podcast beyond the first few episodes.

Now look at your list.

Are these the sort of topics you can see yourself discussing over the coming weeks and months without getting bored or burning yourself out? If not, you might consider getting a new niche and perhaps even a new audience.

Naming Your Podcast

You’ve got three main choices when choosing your podcast name.

You can choose a clever or catchy name such as 99% Invisible, Fresh Air or The Moth. Names like these don’t tell you what the show is about, but you can always add a tagline to help clarify the topic.

Your second option is using a descriptive name such as Football Weekly or Money Matters. This lets people know up front if they might be interested in your show, and it can make it easier to reach your target audience.

Your third option is using your own name. Unless you are already famous, if you choose to use your name, then you’ll want to add a descriptive tagline.

How Long Will Your Podcasts Be?

There’s no right answer for this, other than to make your podcast long enough to convey the information and short enough to never be boring.

Some podcasts are consistently 20 minutes long while others are an hour. If you can fit all of your information into 20 minutes, there’s no need to stretch it longer.

But if you’ve got so much great info that it takes an hour, don’t chop it down to 20 minutes just because that’s what some other podcaster does.

You might survey your audience after a few months to see what they think of the length of your podcasts. And it’s good to be somewhat consistent in length, so that you listeners have an idea of what to expect.

How Often Will You Podcast?

People tend to plan according to days of the week. Thus, is you’re able to put out one podcast each Tuesday, for example, then listeners will know when to expect your next episode.

The best schedule is the most frequent one that you can stick to and that you have enough content to fill.

Another option is to podcast in bursts based on themes. You choose a theme for a series of podcasts – driving website traffic, for example – and then you create these podcasts within a few days and air one a week.

This is a great way to get plenty of podcasts done quickly before moving on to something else. You might create a dozen podcasts in January on one topic, release one per week, and not make any new podcasts until late March to get ready for an April to June release.

You can also do seasonal podcasting based on the time of year. Perhaps you start in September, take a break over the holidays, pick it up again in January, and finish in May, much like an American school year.

Naming Episode Titles

Spend as much time naming your episodes as you would naming a blogpost or a book. A great title will always get you more listeners. Make it clear what people will learn on your episode, and remember that iTunes allows searching by episode name, so be sure to use your main keyword in the title.

And never, ever get lazy and simply name your episodes, “Episode 1, Episode 2 etc.” No one is going to listen to a podcast to figure out what it’s about.

Choosing Your Podcast Format

You can choose one format to use every time or mix it up and do any or even all of these formats – it’s up to you.

Going solo – this is the monologue show, and it’s you and only you. You don’t need to rely on anyone else when you go solo and it builds your authority and credibility in your subject.

The downside is it that’s it’s just you, without any help or input from someone else. Can you talk non-stop for 10 minutes or more every time you do a show? If so, you might try this method out. To dispel the feeling that you’re talking to yourself, imagine your listener is sitting across from you when you record.

Co-hosted – team up with a colleague to chat about hot topics and give great info. The benefits of having a co-host are many. You can discuss, debate, build on each other’s thoughts and create a great listening experience. This can work especially well if you hold different viewpoints or strengths but still respect each other’s opinions.

Co-hosting means you’ve got to agree on topics, find times to record when you are both available, be respectful of each other, and decide in advance who owns the podcasts and how you will split any income from the podcasts.

The Interview Show – this is an awesome format because you get to interview people in your industry about what they’re doing, what they think and what new ideas they have, as well as discussing their thoughts on the latest developments and hearing their stories.

This is also a great way to build your audience because when followers of your guests listen to the show, they may subscribe.

The challenges are that you need to find and book guests to your shows, as well as getting good at conducting interviews. Interviewing is not as easy as you might think, and it does take some skill to do your research, ask the right questions, listen carefully to the answers and compose follow up questions on the spot.

Roundtables – you’re the host with several guests and one topic. It’s probably best to get several one-on-one interviews under your belt before attempting this format.

The positive is you get opinions and information from several sources at once on one topic. The negative is that it can be difficult to differentiate who is speaking on a podcast when there are several people.

Plus, you have to find a time when everyone is available for the podcast, which can be difficult.

Creating Your Cover Art

Your cover art is the first impression most people will have of your podcast. Think of any podcast app you’ve perused – what did you notice first? Most likely it was the cover art, followed closely by the podcast title.

The cover art is usually also the image someone sees when you share your show on social media.

If at all possible, podcast artwork should:


  • Stand out

  • Visually communicate the podcast subject

  • Be designed in a variety of sizes to look good everywhere

  • Limit word use to fit on small images

  • Images like microphones and headsetsAvoid overused i

Here is an excellent overview from Buzzsprout on designing your podcast artwork:

If you have money to spend, then 99designs is perhaps the best place to get your artwork done. Multiple designers will offer their designs based upon your concept. You then pick the ones you like and have them refined even further. Cost: $199-$1,399

A cheaper alternative is Podcast Designs. You tell them what you want and they’ll do the mock-up for you, complete with changes. Cost: $85-$185

If you’re really on a budget, head over to Fiverr. Search through the portfolios to find the right designer, and expect to pay more than just $5 to get it done right.

One last note: You might hold off on investing money on your cover art until you have at least a couple of shows completed, because it’s entirely possible your podcast will turn out to be something other than what you first imagined.

Recording Your Podcast

It’s important not to get hung up on equipment and software in the beginning. Think of your first few podcasts as practice, see what works for you and then upgrade from there.

Hopefully you already have a computer. Add a USB microphone with great sound quality for about $50, and you’ve got all the equipment you need to get started.

Software options abound. Ideally your software should both record and edit. Audacity is a favorite choice that provides quality, free-of-charge audio editing capabilities.

Or you might use Alitu: The Podcast Maker, which is a web app that automates audio cleanup, adds music and acts as your publishing host.

Other options include Ecamm for recording Skype, Zoom for video conferencing, and Squadcast which records each person on the podcast live on their own computer.

It’s Your First Podcast – What Should You Say?

Here are two tricks for always having something to say:

First, practice.

Practice in the shower. And while getting dressed. And while driving, while walking and while pacing around your house. The point is to start talking about your topic as though you were recording and just get used to the feel of podcasting.

If you’ll be conducting an interview, practice on your spouse or friend. Practice even with an imaginary guest. The more you practice, the more comfortable you will be when it comes time to record. Remember when you’re doing the interview to really listen to the guest. Some of your best questions will be things you would never think to ask if you weren’t listening closely to what they’re saying.

Second, get really good at research and outlining.

If you’re doing a solo podcast, research the latest news on your topic and make notes. Then using what you just learned along with the knowledge you already have, make an outline for yourself.

Notice I said “outline” and not “script.” Writing out what you will say word for word will take too much time and it will result in an unsatisfactory product. It’s best to work from a well-crafted outline and speak from your head and heart.

If you’re doing an interview, research both your topic and your guest and write down plenty of questions. Choose your best questions, place them approximately in the order you plan to ask them, and send the list to your guest.

This will give them time to prepare their answers and do any research they need to perform well on your show.

How Do You Get Guests?

This is the biggest question of nearly all new podcasters doing interviews.

And like many things, it does involve a Catch-22. When you are brand new to podcasting, it can be a little difficult to get guests because you don’t have a track record and you might not have an audience. But this is when you really NEED guests, so you’ll have to get them one way or the other.

Once you are well established with a good reputation and large audience, it will be easy to convince people to be your guests but you probably won’t need to, because they will come to you and ask to be on your show.

Here’s where to find your very first guests for your first podcasts:

Your contact list. Who do you know that would make a good guest for your podcast? It might be a colleague, a friend with the right expertise, or even the colleague of a mutual friend. It’s always easiest to start with the people already within your social circle and work out from there.

Friends of friends. You’re going to use your inner circle not only to find your first guests, but to also get introductions to potential guests within their circles as well.

If every time you ask someone to be your guest, you also ask them who else they would recommend, you may never run out of guests.

Put out the call. Send out an email to your list asking for experts. Put the same call out on social media.

And at the end of every podcast, ask your listeners if they have some specialized knowledge that is a good fit for your podcast and give them an email address to write to if they do.

But what if these things don’t work? What if you don’t know anyone with the right expertise for your podcast? Then your first step might be to record a couple of solo podcasts yourself, just to get started. Then when you approach potential interview guests, you can refer them to the podcasts you’ve already done.

Here are a few tips for where to find guests when you don’t know them yet:

Don’t try to book Bill Gates or Jeff Bezos on Day 1.

When choosing who to ask to be on your show, start small. Look for people in your niche who are new and looking to make their own mark. They will be much more likely to take a chance and say yes to you than someone who is already famous or well-established.

Plus, just like you, they probably need the experience.

Attend industry events.

If you attend industry events, you’ll find these can be a goldmine for finding new podcast guests. Socialize and network, collecting cards and finding out what each person has on their plate.

For example, if they’re getting ready to launch a new product or website, you’ve just discovered their motivation for being your podcast guest.

Search for book launches.

Watch Amazon for upcoming books in your niche. Simply search for your topic, and then change the search from “relevance” to “publication date.” These authors want book publicity and are often available for podcast interviews.

Raid your competition – twice.

Search for podcasts in your niche and make a list of the podcasters and their guests that you would like to book on your show. This is an awesome method to use, since you already know these are people open to being on a podcast and you can hear what they sound like before you ever approach them. And don’t forget to ask some of the podcasters about being a guest on their show as well.

Find the bloggers in your niche.

Look not only for the people who run the blogs, but also their guest bloggers, too, to find podcast guests.

Use podcasting guest services.

These are matchmaking services where podcasters can connect with potential guests. Simply search for “podcast guest service” to find a whole list of them.


Help a Reporter Out is a website that connects experts with reporters. In this case, you are the reporter looking for experts. This is an awesome site chock full of experts on just about any topic you can possibly think of, and it can be a source of podcasts guests who are well versed on how to give a great interview.

More Tips for Getting Great Guests:

Set the Stage: When you decide to approach someone, read their blog and leave valuable comments as well as connecting with them on social media. This way when you approach them, they’ll be familiar with your name and the request won’t sound like it comes from a total stranger.

Be Real: Be honest about your audience size. A potential guest wants to hear you have a massive audience, but if you don’t, be honest. Let them know if you do have an audience elsewhere that you can send to your podcast, such as through an email list and social media.

Offer the Link: Mention that you’ll link to their website, landing page, sales page or wherever they choose. This will help them with search engine optimization and possibly help to build their list and make sales.

Discuss Promotion: Tell them how you will promote the podcast on which they appear, now and in the future. Will you use social media? Will you run any paid ads? Will you promote the podcast to your lists?

Send Reminders: Your podcast guests are busy. Send a reminder one week before your scheduled interview (if applicable) and again 24 hours prior. If you have a list of questions, send those three days before you do the show.

Be Thankful: Thank them for considering your podcast, thank them when they agree to be a guest, thank them when you send the questions and reminders, thank them before the interview starts, thank them when you finish the interview, thank them when you send the link… you get the idea.

What do you say when contacting a potential podcast guest?

When you approach someone to ask if they will be your podcast guest, give them the following information:


  1. Mention a blogpost, podcast, book or video they created that you read or watched. Let them know what you thought of it (all positive) and what you especially liked. They need to know that you're inviting them on your show because you like their stuff and see the value they bring, not because they are one of 300 random people you're spamming.

  2. Tell them about your podcast - the name of the podcast, the purpose of the podcast and who your audience is.

  3. If you've interviewed experts in the past, mention them. Name dropping can be highly effective here. If you have relevant credentials, mention those too, in moderation.

  4. Mention any graphics you will create to be shared on social media, and the link they will receive.

  5. Tell them how long the interview lasts (20 to 30 minutes is good) and that it’s audio only. If you’ve already done some shows, give them the URL so they can check it out. If not, give them the URL to a page that describes your podcast and talks about yourself as well.

Once You Post the Show

When the show is posted online, send your guest the link to the show so they can check it out. Do NOT ask them to promote it for you – it’s just bad form to ask. They were already nice enough to do the show, and whether or not they share it with their list or social media is up to them (most of them will share it, often multiple times.)

If they share the podcast link, THANK them for that, too.

Send them a gift. Yes, I mean send them an actual gift. I don’t know what that is because it will depend on the guest. But in the course of your research and conversations you will learn something about what they like. It could be a new book on their favorite topic, for example, which will cost you about $20 and Amazon will ship it for you.

The gift is important because it makes you stand apart from nearly every other podcaster out there and will leave them with a very positive feeling about you.

That combined with how well you treated them and how great the interview went will assure you can get them back as a guest again when the time is right.

And they might even send someone else your way to be your guest, too. You never know who they know.

Podcasting is such a large and important topic that we’re going to continue this next time when we cover…

Making Calls to Action within Your Podcast

Music, Introduction and Editing Your Podcast

Where to List Your Podcast

And most importantly…

Monetizing and Profiting from Your Podcast

Coming up next week, we'll discuss How to Earn Trust, Scale Intimacy and Profit Part 2.




Show Me The MONEY!

   Probably many of you have seen the 1996 movie Jerry Maguire, in which Tom Cruise plays the title character who is a sports agent. He is all about showing his clients the money, but ultimately has a change of heart and chooses quality clients and relationships rather than more and more money.

Ironically, this is the exact opposite of the path that many businesses take as they grow. When we first start out, we focus on providing high quality customer service, but then as we grow, often those values tend to take a back seat as you start to have to support your operations and employees etc. It’s not that big companies mean to do this, it’s just the nature of growth. As you know, as we grow our costs increase so we need to increase our profits to support them, etc, etc. But what do we do about it?

As Jerry Maguire said in his mission statement memo: “The answer to the future is rather obvious. If the tapdancing becomes less constant, less furious, less necessary, what will the result be? The result will be more honesty, more focus, fewer clients, but eventually the revenues will be the same. Because the new day of honesty will create a machine more personalized, more truthful, and the client that wasn’t bullshitted this year, has a greater chance of greatness next year.”

Thank you for taking the time to read this episode. I would love to hear what you think about this issue, may email.

​Wishing you a great year!

Abe Cherian


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