From single projects to recurring work

Finding and acquiring new clients is a lot of work. You’ve got to spend time marketing so prospects know, like, and trust you. Then you’ve got to spend time vetting them as a prospect so you can make sure they’re a good fit for your services. Next you need to write a great proposal that […]

4 ways you sabotage your sales process

Sales is a crucial part of running any business. Let’s revise that — sales is a crucial part of any successful business. If you don’t want to run a successful business then by all means forget about marketing and sales. You don’t need to do them if your goal is failure (or at best, mediocrity). […]

A 3-step marketing plan for your business

Don’t buy into the Hollywood fantasy that if you build it, they will come. I know it’s easy to get stars in your eyes when you see the “internet stars” who appear to have achieved stardom overnight. But if you dig deeper, you might learn that 99% of them worked for 10-20 years without anyone […]

There is a right way to end your projects

We’ve already talked about ending a tough project, but we may have jumped the gun a bit since we didn’t establish how to tie up a project properly if everything went well. Most business owners send an invoice to the client — and then maybe a thank you email — and walk away. They don’t […]

It’s not all about email — get on the phone

There are many benefits to email, one of them being that it’s asynchronous communication. You can send an email now and get your response when it’s most convenient for the receiver. You can batch process them and use email templates to make answering them faster. The problem is, a good business needs to have direct […]

Want great clients? You need to be picky.

When you’re starting your business, you may not be able to afford to be picky about the clients you work with. When I started I contacted 10 people a day I thought could use my services. I’d troll Craigslist and job boards, and if I didn’t find 10 leads I’d check out the local chamber […]

How does marketing fit in with deep work?

Internet companies have taken the original idea behind blogs and amplified it into a set of tools that anyone can use to tighten a tribe. With Twitter, tiny driplike updates reach the thousands of people who are waiting to hear from you and follow your lead. Facebook goes in the opposite direction of Twitter. Instead […]

Marketing the Duct Tape Way

Over the years I’ve recommended Duct Tape Marketing more than once. I read it when I was getting my business started and found it very helpful. Any book that sticks with you for years is worth reading a second time. This is the real test of a book’s sticking power — if it holds your […]

Listen deeply to find the real problem your client has

It doesn’t matter if you work for yourself (internal projects only), you work on client projects, or you’re employed with a direct boss. You’re only paid to solve problems with what you know. One of the key things a great consultant does is find the real problems their clients are having. Good consultants solve whatever […]

If you want clients don’t just wing it, have a marketing plan

All month we’ve talked about marketing and how to use your content to bring in leads regularly so you can have a business that pays your bills. Most of that was overall strategy though, not the tactics of really getting the marketing done regularly. Today we’re going to talk about a plan you can put […]