Last Updated August 23rd, 2010

You Don’t Just Need Money to Make Money, You Need Knowledge to Make Money

There’s an old saying about it taking money to make money. Even with all the free ways to run a business online there’s some truth to that saying, but there’s something more important to your ability to make money.

Knowledge.

If you don’t know how you’re going to make money, if you don’t know where the money is going to come from, you aren’t going to get anywhere.

Build It, and They’ll Pretty Much Ignore You

It would sure be nice if all it took to succeed with a home business was to start one. The real world isn’t that simple, and there’s lots of competition in most niches.

If you sell in person, you’re going to have to talk to people about your business and your product. If you sell online, you have to drive traffic to your website. Without some sort of effort, you aren’t going to get anywhere.

How Do You Get the Knowledge You Need?

There aren’t many of us who are naturals at running a home business of any sort. You usually need a mentor, a few good reference books or ebooks, and/or a lot of time to read up on the skills needed to build your type of business.

Don’t expect the perfect business plan to be handed to you. Everything you read, everything anyone tells you worked for them, it’s all tips for you to consider but you have to figure out which ones work for you. It’s rarely as simple as people make it sound after they’ve succeeded for themselves.

Suggested Reading for Affiliates:

The Affiliate Code
AdWords Guide

Suggested Reading for Network Marketers:

Renegade Network Marketer

You Need Skills, Too

Knowing what has worked for others is an important step. That knowledge won’t get you anywhere until you build up your skills relating to your business.

That means you have to take action.

This is where a lot of people fail with their businesses. They buy ebook after ebook, and either fail to read them or don’t take action because the next hot ebook just caught their attention. Then they wonder why they aren’t earning money when all these products promised them it would be so easy.

Taking action will help you to improve the skills you need to succeed. It won’t guarantee your success, but even if the actions you take fail, you’ll have learned something that might help you to succeed the next time, even if it’s “that doesn’t work for me.”

There’s nothing wrong with having a business fail. Most business owners will experience that. You haven’t completely failed until you give up on having a business at all.

Take time with your skills. Work on improving them. Learn from your mistakes. And most important, be patient. It takes time to learn what it takes to be successful in any business venture.

Disclosure: Some of the links in this post may be 'affiliate links.' This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, I will receive an affiliate commission.

Last Updated February 17th, 2010

Should You Build an Email Newsletter for Your Home Business?

Reading on some sites, you would think that building an email newsletter is the one true way to build a successful business. It’s true that there are a lot of advantages to having an email newsletter. But you have to figure out if it will work for your business model.

Know Your Goals for Your Newsletter

Before you start a newsletter you should have some goals in mind. It’s not as simple as signing up for a service and dropping the form on your site.

The most obvious goal is to increase your income. Anything else and you’re probably wasting valuable time. But knowing that you want to increase your income isn’t very helpful. You need to know how you’re going to go about it.

Your newsletter often won’t be just an ad. Listing specials is a good thing, but it’s not going to appeal to as wide a crowd as something more informative in many niches.

If you have a network marketing business, for example, your emails can include product specials plus tips on using products, and sometimes a bit about why the opportunity is so great. Your goals then would be to increase both sales and your downline.

Is a Newsletter the Right Model?

There are more ways of building a list than just a newsletter. You may do better with an ecourse in some niches.

This works best if you have a specific goal in mind, and have products you can recommend throughout the course. An ecourse should be very informative and the product highly relevant.

I have a niche like this on one of my sites. A newsletter would take more time than I feel is needed to present the benefits of what is being offered. The ecourse is long enough to give good information to subscribers and to encourage them to buy what I’m offering.

If you go with the ecourse model, remember the saying about it taking about seven exposures to get someone to make a purchase. You will want your course to be at least that long, with no more than a week between lessons.

You can combine a newsletter with an ecourse as well. The course can be the main information needed, with the newsletter allowing you to keep in contact with the list you have built.

Can You Keep Up?

From my own experience, I can tell you that sometimes keeping up with sending out a newsletter is a real pain. It’s not always easy to remember to send it out on time.

Don’t let too long go between emails. Wait a couple months in between and you increase the odds of your messages being labeled as spam.

Subscribers like being able to know when they will get their emails. A sudden increase is going to disturb them in much the same way as a disappearance followed by a reappearance. Be consistent.

Pay for a Quality Service

Strictly speaking, yes, you can run a newsletter list off your own website. But if you’re sending the emails off your computer your ISP may have something to say about the volume, and you’re not going to like it. Get spam complaints and you have trouble with your hosting company too.

And all newsletters get spam complaints, no matter how careful you are about subscriptions. Some people consider it spam as soon as they get bored with the newsletter, and hit the spam key rather than the unsubscribe.

I would suggest paying for either Aweber or GetResponse. They’re both good companies that have been around for a long time. It’s an expense, but one well worth it, knowing that they will handle keeping track of subscriptions, unsubscriptions and spam complaints.

Running a newsletter may or may not be profitable, depending on your niche and how you offer products, but in most markets it’s at least worth a test. Give it a try and remember that a good business goal is to make money by providing quality information or products.

Disclosure: Some of the links in this post may be 'affiliate links.' This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, I will receive an affiliate commission.

Last Updated October 9th, 2009

Doctor Makes Money on eBay – Can You?

There’s an article up on CNN about a doctor who’s making more money selling clothes on eBay than she is as a doctor. Pretty amazing.

eBay businesses are certainly not the easiest things to run. You have to find products that you can sell at a profit. You have to deal with sometimes changing fee structures. You have to get things shipped out promptly and deal with a sometimes unfair feedback system.

Honestly, it’s not my style. But I do like pointing out when people succeed in a home business. It’s good for all of us working toward such goals to see that.

But if it’s for you, a quick search turned up some resources you may want to consider:

Salewhoo Wholesale Sources
eBay Fortune
Silent Sales Machine

Disclosure: Some of the links in this post may be 'affiliate links.' This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, I will receive an affiliate commission.

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Disclosure: Home with the Kids is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to amazon.com. I also review or mention products for which I may receive compensation from other sources. All opinions are my own.