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5 Ways to Make Traveling Easier While Building Your Online Business

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how to build an online business while traveling

We all share the dream of traveling across the planet. Jetting off to faraway lands in search of worldly wonders. From The Great Wall to Angel Falls, we all want to see the Taj Mahal.

These days it’s easier than ever to travel, and thanks to modern technology, the term digital nomad has been coined.

If you want to see Machu Picchu, you don’t have to beg the boss and book 8 months in advance. In this technological age, you can book a flight on your phone, pack a laptop and travel anywhere whilst building a business and earning money.

As I sit overlooking the most beautiful of lakes surrounded by green snowy mountains I am preparing these 5 tips on how to be a savvy traveler, save money, and work on the road:

1. Choose your destinations wisely

The idea of embracing the Northern Lights or exploring the Rocky Mountains might sound out of this world, but your saving will take a nosedive and you’ll wonder how you spent a year’s hard earned cash in just 2 months. Not the ideal way to start a business.

Instead, consider a destination like South America. It’s stunningly beautiful, they have great transport options, and you can dine like royalty for just a couple of dollars. There’s wifi too!

One night’s accommodation in Bolivia’s capital is $4.79 at this time of year. In New York, it’s $35, that’s a 600% increase. A week in a Bolivian hostel costs $33.53. A New York hostel will put you back $245 for the week.

Think about that the next time you fancy heading to the top of King Kong’s climbing frame.

“Travel makes one modest. You see what a tiny place you occupy in the world.” – Gustave Flaubert

2. Airbnb is where the smart traveler lives

A traveler’s biggest expense is accommodation. Most travelers will hop from one hostel to another in an alcohol-fueled daze. This is what I did back in 2007.

You want to explore the world and experience its wonders, but at the same time you want a bit of space and peace, and good night’s sleep.

Any long term digital nomad knows that in order to successfully build a business and earn money online, you need to have at least a little comfort. All you’ll get in a hostel is restless nights, dirty showers and broken kitchens.

This is where Airbnb comes in. They provide you with the opportunity to rent a room or apartment in someone’s home for a very competitive price. With over 1.5 million listings in over 190 countries, they are a brand to trust.

An Airbnb host will likely point you in the direction of all the best tourist, and not so touristy spots. You’ll have the use of a kitchen, a living room and you’ll have the space and peace necessary to focus on your online business. You’ll even get a discount for a longer stay.

 

3. If you love animals then housesitting might be just the ticket

These days I hang out in giant houses with saunas, tennis courts and swimming pools. The kind of places that are surrounded by lakes and beautiful mountains. I’ve been traveling for 14 months, and for the last 4 I’ve been living like a King, for free.

I get to focus on earning money and building my business simultaneously. I pay for this by walking a dog in a forest a couple of times a day. How do I get to the forest? I drive in the car that is provided to me.

It sounds too good to be true, but these days Fido doesn’t go to the kennels. When his owners want to go on vacation they get someone like me to come and look after their home and pets.

This saves me a tremendous amount of money. I get to stay in local areas, the accommodation is incredible, and most importantly, I get to work really hard online.

A site like Trusted Housesitters is really easy to join, you just need to get a few references, arrange a skype call and turn up. Did I mention I get the free use of their cars, bikes, boats, and skiing equipment?

 

4. Volunteer and get into gear

During my current excursion I have volunteered at a few different places. During that time I’ve learned to seek out the diamonds.

By committing to 3-5 hours a day you can receive free food & board by learning something new and help out others.

Not only will your heart grow bigger but you’ll make friends, have true local experiences, and enjoy glorious locations. In your free time, you can finish your website, write your blog, complete some freelance work, or just sit back and enjoy the view. Places like Work Away are great starting points.

“Man cannot discover new oceans unless he has the courage to lose sight of the shore.” – Andre Gide

5. Pack light and live heavy

The first time I traveled I had the usual 85 liter backpack filled to the brim with needless items that I never used.

Now I roll with a 40-liter backpack complete with foldaway guitar, camera, and laptop. I used to spend hours rearranging the old beast of a bag. These days if I want something, I know exactly where it is.

By carrying less, not only is it easier to move around but you’ll be more organized which directly translates into productivity. My phone is my camera, book reader, map, compass, and diary. It’s a lifesaver. Pack minimally and see maximum results.

What travel tips would you give that aren’t in this list? Please leave your thoughts in the comment section below!

Angelo Drake is the creator of infinityinspired.com, a resource designed to help you achieve your full potential and maximize your life.

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15 Comments

15 Comments

  1. John DTDC

    Jul 20, 2016 at 2:00 pm

    Hai Angelo Drake

    I spent most of the time for selection of items carry in my backpack.Your fifth tip (Pack light and live heavy) is absolutely right. Airbnb is a new information to me. Thank you.

  2. Roopa Sinha

    Jun 10, 2016 at 12:05 pm

    Nice article. Most of the time when I travel, my backpack is too heavy. Now I consider that it should be light for both travelling and carrying.

    • Angelo Drake

      Jun 13, 2016 at 8:39 pm

      Hey Roopa, thanks.

      Definitely, pack less. I have travelled for years with a small bag. Lugging a big heavy beast around is not what traveling is all about.

  3. Amanda

    Jun 9, 2016 at 1:01 am

    Thank you for this wonderful article. Fantastic information, tips and options that were previously unknown to me. This has given me a lot to look into – definitely a pointer (and boost) into the right direction, as well as reassurance that it doesn’t need to be too strainful on finances, nor need there need to be drastic sacrifices made in standards of living- when I had assumed otherwise. Thank you for the sharing of your own experiences and knowledge on such an interesting subject. I’ll be looking forward to reading more from you.

    • Angelo Drake

      Jun 13, 2016 at 8:41 pm

      Thanks, Amanda.

      The key to successful travel is a little planning but also a little unplanning. Try to let life guide you rather than the guide book or what others tell you that you can or cannot do.

  4. Angelo Drake

    Jun 6, 2016 at 10:09 pm

    Hey Sarah, thanks for your tips.

    Although trusted house sitters may seem expensive, it’s a worthy investment. Recently I spent 3 months in Salk Lake City Utah. The average cost on Airbnb to rent a place for 3 months was around $9000. There was a tipi for over $2000 per month! I stayed in a beautiful huge house with a car and we simply looked after 2 little dogs. The £75 investment is nothing compared to how much we saved during that period.

    I was a member of mind my house but find that trusted house sitters is a much better resource. That being said, just before my membership ended, I landed a 5 week house-sit on Vancouver Island which will begin in September.

    The idea of having a digital nomad meet up and co-renting to focus on your business is an awesome idea. I like your style.

  5. Charlene Rhinehart

    Jun 6, 2016 at 5:39 pm

    I am so glad that I stumbled across this article! This is exactly what I am looking for. I just finished a 6 month world tour with Up with People and am seeking opportunities to travel to a spanish speaking country. My goal is to travel while working on my business and this article addresses most of my questions. This is just what I needed! This article brings me one step closer to achieving my goals. Thank you!!

    • Angelo Drake

      Jun 6, 2016 at 9:58 pm

      That’s great news Charlene. You will love South America if you go that way. There are plenty of volunteering opportunities and airbnb is reasonably new over there so many people are offering great accommodation at excellent prices just to get their first review. Often times, if you book a place for a whole month, you’ll get a big discount.

      Go for it, you’ll be so happy that you gave yourself the time and space to work on your business whilst experiencing new cultures.

  6. Sankar Nayak

    Jun 6, 2016 at 2:21 pm

    Awesome article, i enjoyed along with learn how to preplan for long travel.

    • Angelo Drake

      Jun 13, 2016 at 8:43 pm

      Preplan but also go with the flow. If you planned to see that iconic monument but your new found friends are begging you to go with them somewhere else, go with your friends!

  7. Tim Denning

    Jun 6, 2016 at 12:59 am

    Angelo congrats on your first article on Addicted2Success!

    I learnt a bit from your article and its a topic that is very important to me at the moment. I had no idea about house sitting luxury homes and looking after people’s pets.

    • Angelo Drake

      Jun 6, 2016 at 10:02 pm

      Thanks, Tim.

      House-sitting, of all the travel and save options I cover, is the most lucrative. Right now I am sat on a balcony, surrounded by forests, whilst overlooking a huge lake. The price I have paid for this? Look after 7 house cats!

      In 2.5 weeks I head to another location to take care of 2 dogs and following that another location in which there are no animals to take care of, I am simply keeping their home secure. My entire year is filled up with these opportunities and you can find them too.

      North America and Europe are good options!

  8. Sarah

    Jun 5, 2016 at 4:58 pm

    Nice article! The other ones I’ve come across, for free accommodation is the famous couch surfing, which is definitely handy for short stays.

    There’s also Wimdu,which is a bit like Airbnb but peer to peer accommodation rental.

    The only thing I would say about trusted housesitters is that registering is expensive (around £75 annually) so you would have to be fairly commited. Although saying that and having subscribed to their mailing lists they do offers on that price every now and again. There are similar sites (no necessarily looking after pets too) e.g mind my house where the registration fees are closer to £15-20, which is a bit more reasonable.

    I guess another plan if you had a digital nomad meet up you could rent an apartment as a co-working space..?

    • Angelo Drake

      Jun 13, 2016 at 8:46 pm

      Thanks for the extra tips Sarah, super helpful.

      I have used mindmyhouse and would say that the extra money spent on trustedhousesitters is well worth it. There site interface and usability is much better than mindmyhouse.

      Here is another way to put the $75 into perspective. I have literally saved over $15,000 in accommodation costs over a short period of time thanks to the $75 investment I made.

      The idea of setting up a digital nomad co-working space apartment is awesome!

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Startups

5 Ways to Avoid Burning Out While Building Your Business

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Isn’t it strange how mundane things can bring back really vivid memories? As the burnt toast hit the trash, I remembered how burn out meant my first online business ended up on the scrapheap (nearly taking me with it). 

Juggling a full-time job, family, volunteering and running an online business left me physically, emotionally and psychologically exhausted. Just like toast, the burn creeps in slowly and when complete, you’re left unable to nourish yourself or anything else.

You may have already heard run-of-the-mill advice like taking regular breaks to prevent burn out. But what’s the point of stepping away from work only to be stressed that things will fall apart?

Here are five not-so-obvious ways to become burn out proof:

1. Create the right systems

Having no systems (or the wrong systems) is a recipe for disaster. Unfortunately, systems get a bad rap because they can be seen as snooze fests. Who’s ever heard of a sexy system? I sure haven’t!

To make matters worse, traditional systems have a sterile and stuffy image that can make some entrepreneurs feel boxed into something that’s unsuitable for their needs.

The key to making systems work for your business is to design them with flexibility, so your creativity isn’t stifled. Systems that curb burn out are those that account for the ‘secret sauce’ of how you do business. This ensures authenticity, even when your business grows. I call these flexible and personalized systems ‘productivity recipes.’ Because, just like normal recipes, you have the core ingredients and you can make tweaks to suit your business taste.

We’re all different, so there’s no one-size-fits-all business system. Productivity recipes focus on the human side of systems. They bring order to repetitive tasks while taking into account the quirks that make your business unique.

Productivity recipes stop burn out by preventing you from biting off more than you can chew, especially when your business is growing.

2. Get apps ‘talking’ to each other

Automation is another way to hand over repetitive and stressful work. Services like IFTTT and Zapier connect the apps you use to automate your workflow. In other words, they get rid of the biggest time sucks in your business.

Part of creating productivity recipes is to spot tasks you can automate. This will help your business run like a well-oiled machine and save you money when outsourcing.

Start out automating everyday tasks, like social media and email management, by finding out how the apps can ‘talk’ to each other.

Do yourself (and your health) a favour and start to create productivity recipes to see what you can automate. The aim is to drop repetitive tasks like a hot potato to reduce the risk of burnt out. Get your apps communicating to free up time to chat with friends and family.

“The first rule of any technology used in a business is that automation applied to an efficient operation will magnify the efficiency. The second is that automation applied to an inefficient operation will magnify the inefficiency.” – Bill Gates

3. Outsource

Outsourcing should be done when you already have productivity recipes in place. It’s tempting to hand over parts of your business to a VA or freelancer and forget about it, but this approach could land you in hot water.

With productivity recipes, anyone you hire will have the blueprint of how you expect things to be done. You’ll also save time getting new hires up to speed. Most importantly, your clients won’t get any nasty surprises or unwelcome changes when you grow your team.

You’ll be able to take time out to recharge your batteries, having all the confidence that your business will continue to function properly in your absence.

4. Find some cheerleaders

Being part of a supportive group is crucial to making yourself burn out proof. Informal groups, like Facebook communities, are helpful networks that can prevent you going down the burn out road.

If you’ve been working non-stop and your brain feels as limp as the lettuce in the sandwich you’ve been too busy to eat, connect with people who can identify with where you are and encourage you to take a step back.

The best groups are those that aren’t strictly business. Look for a group with dedicated days for sharing things like inspirational quotes and jokes to lighten things up a little.

Feeling like you’re the only one who experiences overwhelm can be a lonely place. Being part of a community where people share their struggles helps to provide perspective that you can achieve your goals without compromising your health.

“Be strong, be fearless, be beautiful. And believe that anything is possible when you have the right people there to support you.” – Misty Copeland

5. Inject your personality into your passion

When you’re passionate about your work, it seems like you can work day and night without ever feeling tired. Of course, it’s advisable to make time for proper rest. I’ve found that, the more I enjoy work, the more I look after myself to reduce the risks of becoming ill. I’m passionate about helping entrepreneurs be more productive to avoid burn out. I’m also a huge foodie. That’s why I incorporate food and drink analogies in my work because being fed and watered is something we can all relate to.

Injecting your personality into your work makes everything easier. It’s very draining pretending to be someone you’re not. If you’re already pursuing your passion, add a splash of your personality to reduce the chance of burn out.

Suffering from burn out is a serious setback to your health and business. It’s a relief to know that, unlike the burnt toast that ends up in the trash, you can make a full recovery from burn out. But why take the risk in the first place? Put in place practical measures to avoid getting burnt when the heat is turned up in your business.

It’s good to share. What do you put in place to make sure you don’t burn out? Leave a comment below and share your thoughts.

How do you avoid burning out when things get tough? Let us know by commenting below!

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3 Lessons I Learned From the Failure of My First Startup

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You’re exhausted. You’ve put countless of hours into an idea that you believed in so much. Literally almost blood, sweat and tears were sacrificed for this vision to be accomplished. You had hoped and expected for a lot of things, and was excited to have plans for the future.

A few months ago, I wrote an article here titled, “What I Learned After Opening My First Business at 21.” My restaurant was doing well that time, and writing that article made me feel on top of the world. I thought that it was going to be that way for a long time, yet not so long after that, sales started to become stagnant and then declined.

As I write this today, my restaurant has already stopped operations. It stopped a few days ago, but a couple months back, I knew it was bound to happen. We couldn’t keep up with the bills we needed to pay, and they kept accumulating day by day. With a heavy heart and chaotic mind, we knew we had to close it down.

I couldn’t believe this was happening barely one year after starting operations. But if you were to ask me that if I had the chance to start over, would I do it again? I would still say yes. Despite its failure, there were still very important (also expensive) lessons that I learned that I would never have acquired otherwise if I didn’t start the business.

Here are a few lessons I learned after failing my first startup:

1. Entrepreneurship requires resilience

You cannot ever be successful if you haven’t developed resilience. Whether you like it or not, something will turn out wrong in your business. Maybe sometimes not to the point that it needs to be shut down, but something that could make your decisions critical to your organization goals.

You could give yourself time to grieve, but it shouldn’t stop there. Life goes on. And you need to get back on your feet if you still want to make a difference. The biggest companies that are successful right now all experienced a massive amount of failure.

But they never stopped trying. Because with every failure comes a lesson. Anyone with common sense would learn from that failure, and start again with more knowledge on what to do and what not to do.

Whenever I thought about the accumulated debts of my restaurant, I would have this sinking feeling in my chest and stomach. I knew that I would have to liquidate the assets. So I continued to search for buyers of the assets.

Instead of grieving for a much longer period, I knew I’d have to pick myself back up again so I could pay the debt. It might be hard at first, but if you call yourself an entrepreneur, quitting is not an option. We fail, we learn, then get back up.

“Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts.” – Winston Churchill

2. Learn to listen

Being a first-time founder, I had a very idealistic attitude. I had no experience in the food industry and established the business with only the belief that my partners and I would make it. I was wrong.

Aside from not being able to make it with that business, I realized what the naysayers had been telling me all along. But you have to be careful here. There are naysayers who have no credibility to back up what they say and want to bring you down. But there are also ones who speak from experience and are genuinely concerned for you. You must learn to discern the right voices to listen to if you want to succeed.

Taking risks is good, but make sure those risks are calculated and not reckless. We took a risk that wasn’t entirely reckless, but not all aspects of them were calculated. We were unsure of some parts of the business, and just “winged” it. Look at what happened to winging it!

Know when you need to jump with both feet or just one, but also listen to the voices who tell you when to put your feet in the water. Trust me, you never know when you will value their input.

3. Your failures do not define you

I never thought this would take a toll on my self-esteem, even when I knew I had to get back up. On the outside I looked normal. Going to school, work, and social settings looking like nothing had happened. But inside I was a wreck and didn’t want to admit it.

I would feel guilty whenever people would praise me about how “successful” I was at such a young age but that wasn’t true. For a while I thought that I was the failure. My insecurities started haunting me again and my browser history was filled with questions on what to do.

That was when I discovered that successful people failed more often than they succeeded. Even the ones with smaller businesses had their fair share of failures before finding an idea that worked for them.

But their failures never got to their heart. They weren’t the failures. The business failed, not them. So they tried again until they got it right. Maybe this business didn’t work out for me, but that doesn’t mean I’ll never be successful. The sooner you believe your failures don’t define you, the more the weight will be lifted off your shoulders.

People fail every single day. The difference between the ones who succeed and those who don’t is persistence and the drive to continue even after failing. It’s much better to try and fail than never having to start and learn nothing.

“Success is not a good teacher, failure makes you humble.” – Shah Rukh Khan

Have you ever started a business that eventually failed? What did you learn from it? Please leave your experiences below!
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Want A Business Idea That’s Guaranteed To Make You Money? Here’s How You Should Start.

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Let’s first start off with the “why”. When you know why you’re doing something, it can create clarity in your tasks, and direct your efforts. So, grab a sheet of paper, or a notebook and let’s get started.

Answer this question: Why do I want to start a business? Here are some common answers.

  • to do something I love
  • to create financial freedom so I can, “fill in the blank” (travel, pay off debts, buy expensive things, etc.)
  • to have the freedom to set my hours, choose when I work and what I work on
  • to help others, using my skills
  • I hate my job

Once you know why you’re doing it, you’ll have a better idea of what your goals are.

“The two most important days of your life are the day you were born and the day you discover why you were born.” – Mark Twain

Start With Your Skills

At the heart of every business, and profession is the solution to a problem. If you can identify a problem that a group of people are having and solve it for them, you have the makings of a successful business.

Start with your current skill set. Everyone has skills, passions and talents in one area or another. What we fail to sometimes see is the ability for those skills to solve a problem for others in a meaningful way.

You can also ask family and friends to help you identify your skills. They may point out strengths you never considered. Keep in mind you don’t need to have mastered that skill yet, you can continue to learn and develop it as you go along. Ray Higdon a successful business man says to “Invest, learn then teach”.

Invest in yourself and improving your skills, learn more about your niche, and creating solutions to their problems, then teach others what you’ve learned.

Once you’ve got that down, the next step is doing some research. What problems are people having that you could use your current skill set to help solve? This is where picking a niche comes in handy. A niche refers to a small specialized portion of the population.

Let’s say, you’re a stay at home parent, and one of your skills is cooking healthy family meals that your kids enjoy. Your niche will likely be stay at home parents. You can then narrow down your search by checking forums and website or magazines that target stay at home parents.

“If you do what you love, it is the best way to relax.” – Christian Louboutin

What To Look For in Your Research?

Look for pain points and problems, especially those that are recurring. You may find that cooking healthy meals is not necessarily where parents are struggling, maybe it’s with purchasing healthy foods or the cost (money and time) of healthy meals. You want to look at the questions people are asking, and take note of the language they use to describe their problems. Nutritious vs. healthy. Quick vs. easy.

Finally, take note of products that offer solutions to those problems. These offer ideas to you about ways in which you can present your solution; Youtube channels, specialized cookbooks, how-to guides, online courses, etc.

By the time you’ve followed all these steps, you would have established 3 things:

  1. A monetizable skill set — You know what your skills are and how you can use them
  2. Proof of a Need — People have a problem that you can solve, and now you know who they are.
  3. A Profitable Market — If people are buying said cookbooks, or paying for products, this shows you that they are willing to put their money where their mouth is.

This is the beginning of any business. Fast Food restaurants offer quick meals on the go, Walmart puts everything in one place so people don’t have to travel to different stores, books entertain or instruct, cars transport and save time. At the heart of every product and business is a need, and you are now on your way to creating a solution that people are already looking for!

What is a business you want to start? Share your thoughts below!

Image courtesy of Twenty20.com

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7 Essential Email Marketing Tips You Need to Implement Into Your Business Today

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While Email might seem like a fading beauty, this technological dinosaur continues to be the preferred method of communication for the digital age. The rise of smartphones and mobile devices has only added to emails popularity by putting constant communication right in the palm of our hands.

In fact, According to Custora, Email marketing was the biggest driver of Black Friday transactions last fall, with 25.1% of sales originating from email promotions.

With that in mind, here are some tips that are guaranteed to take your Email Marketing to a whole new level:

1. One Element, One Job

Most people try and do way too much with their emails, and you may be guilty of this as well. Follow the simple rule of making each element of your email do just one job, and your emails will become much more effective. The subject line of your email, for example, exists for one reason only: To get your email opened. Your subject line doesn’t need to explain what’s in the email. It doesn’t need to sell, or get clicks. It JUST needs to get your email opened.

That’s it’s job. The body copy of your email exists just for the purposes of getting clicks. That’s it. Each element has its proper place, and if you just make sure they do their job, you’ll see great results.

2. Keep It Short And Sweet

People are busy, and their attention span is limited…So always remember that you’re writing an email, not Homer’s Odyssey. Remember, the body of your email has one job: To get the reader to click. So say what you have to say, keep it short and sweet, and get them to click away from the inbox, and moving along the path towards where you want them.

“Good content is a commodity, great content is a scarcity.”

3. Train Your Subscribers To Click

Every email you write – Every single one – Should have a link in it that your readers can click on, and a call to action encouraging them to do so. If you’re selling something, obviously you would include a link, but if you are sharing content, or telling a story (which is fine, because people love stories) make sure to tell SOME of the story, then offer a link to read the conclusion on a web page or blog.

Link to videos, or other things the reader might find inspiring. Link to your help desk! Whatever it is, you want to train your readers to see your emails, open them, read them, and then CLICK.

4. Be Consistent

Consistency breeds familiarity, and familiarity breeds comfort and trust. And comfortable, trusting people buy stuff! Try opening and closing all your emails with the same introduction and the same sign off. Create a mailing calendar and try emailing the same days every week, or mailing at the same time everyday.

Much like bars offer a happy hour at the same time everyday, maybe you can send a “daily deal” email every afternoon or a weekly summary email. Whatever it is you decide to do, once you decide to do it, be CONSISTENT.

5. Personalize, {name}

Personalization fields are extremely powerful. Multiple studies have shown that the single most powerful word in any language is someone’s OWN name. And so of course, personalization fields that allow you to address your reader by name are incredibly effective. Campaign Monitor has reported that Marketers who use personalization in their subject lines see 26% more opens.

You can also use personalization fields to mention what time it is (no matter where someone is) what city or country someone is in. Even what they’ve bought in previous transactions!

“Email Acquisition is like cutting hair, must happen regularly, can be done well, but one bad experience can scar forever.” – David Baker

6. Segment Your Lists

Modern autoresponders are a miracle of analytical data and automation opportunities. You now have the ability to easily segment your lists, and you should. Separate your prospects from your buyers. Separate buyers by product or category, so you can follow up with smart emails that sell upgrades or related products! You can even separate people who opened and read previous emails from those who haven’t, so you can follow up with people who opened your emails, read them, and clicked, from those who didn’t.

7. Tell Stories

Storytelling is one of the oldest forms of communication known to man. Stories have been used throughout time to pass lore and culture down from generation to generation. And from a marketing standpoint, stories offer a glimpse into who you are, or what your business stands for and how it works.

This information might seem mundane to you, but an outsider will find it fascinating. And as a result, the ability to tell stories will dramatically improve your marketing. If you’re new to storytelling, start by finding friends or co-workers who are particularly fun or engaging. Pay attention to how they command a room through stories and anecdotes. Look for local storytelling events so you can attend, and listen in as master storytellers share their craft.

These 7 tips should drastically improve your email marketing. Start implementing them and be sure to share your results.

What other email marketing strategies would you add to this list? Leave your thoughts below!

Image courtesy of Twenty20.com

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The Ugly Truth About Success and Why You’re Not Achieving It

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As human beings, most of us have this tendency to overcomplicate things. Maybe you’ve had this experience of trying to find success, but for some reason, it keeps eluding you.  In our pursuit to win, hardly anyone tells us the ugly truth about why most of our dreams seem to evade us. (more…)

I used to be homeless and now run a six figure business with my partner and travel the world. My journey to help those in need has taken me from non-profit director to supporting holistic entrepreneurs have a life of freedom. I run the Thriving Launch Podcast, which features the most influential leaders in the areas of love, spirituality, business, and success. It's my mission to help heart-centered entrepreneurs get their message heard. Learn more on at my website ThrivingLaunch.com (http://www.thrivinglaunch.com/)

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15 Comments

15 Comments

  1. John DTDC

    Jul 20, 2016 at 2:00 pm

    Hai Angelo Drake

    I spent most of the time for selection of items carry in my backpack.Your fifth tip (Pack light and live heavy) is absolutely right. Airbnb is a new information to me. Thank you.

  2. Roopa Sinha

    Jun 10, 2016 at 12:05 pm

    Nice article. Most of the time when I travel, my backpack is too heavy. Now I consider that it should be light for both travelling and carrying.

    • Angelo Drake

      Jun 13, 2016 at 8:39 pm

      Hey Roopa, thanks.

      Definitely, pack less. I have travelled for years with a small bag. Lugging a big heavy beast around is not what traveling is all about.

  3. Amanda

    Jun 9, 2016 at 1:01 am

    Thank you for this wonderful article. Fantastic information, tips and options that were previously unknown to me. This has given me a lot to look into – definitely a pointer (and boost) into the right direction, as well as reassurance that it doesn’t need to be too strainful on finances, nor need there need to be drastic sacrifices made in standards of living- when I had assumed otherwise. Thank you for the sharing of your own experiences and knowledge on such an interesting subject. I’ll be looking forward to reading more from you.

    • Angelo Drake

      Jun 13, 2016 at 8:41 pm

      Thanks, Amanda.

      The key to successful travel is a little planning but also a little unplanning. Try to let life guide you rather than the guide book or what others tell you that you can or cannot do.

  4. Angelo Drake

    Jun 6, 2016 at 10:09 pm

    Hey Sarah, thanks for your tips.

    Although trusted house sitters may seem expensive, it’s a worthy investment. Recently I spent 3 months in Salk Lake City Utah. The average cost on Airbnb to rent a place for 3 months was around $9000. There was a tipi for over $2000 per month! I stayed in a beautiful huge house with a car and we simply looked after 2 little dogs. The £75 investment is nothing compared to how much we saved during that period.

    I was a member of mind my house but find that trusted house sitters is a much better resource. That being said, just before my membership ended, I landed a 5 week house-sit on Vancouver Island which will begin in September.

    The idea of having a digital nomad meet up and co-renting to focus on your business is an awesome idea. I like your style.

  5. Charlene Rhinehart

    Jun 6, 2016 at 5:39 pm

    I am so glad that I stumbled across this article! This is exactly what I am looking for. I just finished a 6 month world tour with Up with People and am seeking opportunities to travel to a spanish speaking country. My goal is to travel while working on my business and this article addresses most of my questions. This is just what I needed! This article brings me one step closer to achieving my goals. Thank you!!

    • Angelo Drake

      Jun 6, 2016 at 9:58 pm

      That’s great news Charlene. You will love South America if you go that way. There are plenty of volunteering opportunities and airbnb is reasonably new over there so many people are offering great accommodation at excellent prices just to get their first review. Often times, if you book a place for a whole month, you’ll get a big discount.

      Go for it, you’ll be so happy that you gave yourself the time and space to work on your business whilst experiencing new cultures.

  6. Sankar Nayak

    Jun 6, 2016 at 2:21 pm

    Awesome article, i enjoyed along with learn how to preplan for long travel.

    • Angelo Drake

      Jun 13, 2016 at 8:43 pm

      Preplan but also go with the flow. If you planned to see that iconic monument but your new found friends are begging you to go with them somewhere else, go with your friends!

  7. Tim Denning

    Jun 6, 2016 at 12:59 am

    Angelo congrats on your first article on Addicted2Success!

    I learnt a bit from your article and its a topic that is very important to me at the moment. I had no idea about house sitting luxury homes and looking after people’s pets.

    • Angelo Drake

      Jun 6, 2016 at 10:02 pm

      Thanks, Tim.

      House-sitting, of all the travel and save options I cover, is the most lucrative. Right now I am sat on a balcony, surrounded by forests, whilst overlooking a huge lake. The price I have paid for this? Look after 7 house cats!

      In 2.5 weeks I head to another location to take care of 2 dogs and following that another location in which there are no animals to take care of, I am simply keeping their home secure. My entire year is filled up with these opportunities and you can find them too.

      North America and Europe are good options!

  8. Sarah

    Jun 5, 2016 at 4:58 pm

    Nice article! The other ones I’ve come across, for free accommodation is the famous couch surfing, which is definitely handy for short stays.

    There’s also Wimdu,which is a bit like Airbnb but peer to peer accommodation rental.

    The only thing I would say about trusted housesitters is that registering is expensive (around £75 annually) so you would have to be fairly commited. Although saying that and having subscribed to their mailing lists they do offers on that price every now and again. There are similar sites (no necessarily looking after pets too) e.g mind my house where the registration fees are closer to £15-20, which is a bit more reasonable.

    I guess another plan if you had a digital nomad meet up you could rent an apartment as a co-working space..?

    • Angelo Drake

      Jun 13, 2016 at 8:46 pm

      Thanks for the extra tips Sarah, super helpful.

      I have used mindmyhouse and would say that the extra money spent on trustedhousesitters is well worth it. There site interface and usability is much better than mindmyhouse.

      Here is another way to put the $75 into perspective. I have literally saved over $15,000 in accommodation costs over a short period of time thanks to the $75 investment I made.

      The idea of setting up a digital nomad co-working space apartment is awesome!

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5 Ways to Avoid Burning Out While Building Your Business

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Isn’t it strange how mundane things can bring back really vivid memories? As the burnt toast hit the trash, I remembered how burn out meant my first online business ended up on the scrapheap (nearly taking me with it). 

Juggling a full-time job, family, volunteering and running an online business left me physically, emotionally and psychologically exhausted. Just like toast, the burn creeps in slowly and when complete, you’re left unable to nourish yourself or anything else.

You may have already heard run-of-the-mill advice like taking regular breaks to prevent burn out. But what’s the point of stepping away from work only to be stressed that things will fall apart?

Here are five not-so-obvious ways to become burn out proof:

1. Create the right systems

Having no systems (or the wrong systems) is a recipe for disaster. Unfortunately, systems get a bad rap because they can be seen as snooze fests. Who’s ever heard of a sexy system? I sure haven’t!

To make matters worse, traditional systems have a sterile and stuffy image that can make some entrepreneurs feel boxed into something that’s unsuitable for their needs.

The key to making systems work for your business is to design them with flexibility, so your creativity isn’t stifled. Systems that curb burn out are those that account for the ‘secret sauce’ of how you do business. This ensures authenticity, even when your business grows. I call these flexible and personalized systems ‘productivity recipes.’ Because, just like normal recipes, you have the core ingredients and you can make tweaks to suit your business taste.

We’re all different, so there’s no one-size-fits-all business system. Productivity recipes focus on the human side of systems. They bring order to repetitive tasks while taking into account the quirks that make your business unique.

Productivity recipes stop burn out by preventing you from biting off more than you can chew, especially when your business is growing.

2. Get apps ‘talking’ to each other

Automation is another way to hand over repetitive and stressful work. Services like IFTTT and Zapier connect the apps you use to automate your workflow. In other words, they get rid of the biggest time sucks in your business.

Part of creating productivity recipes is to spot tasks you can automate. This will help your business run like a well-oiled machine and save you money when outsourcing.

Start out automating everyday tasks, like social media and email management, by finding out how the apps can ‘talk’ to each other.

Do yourself (and your health) a favour and start to create productivity recipes to see what you can automate. The aim is to drop repetitive tasks like a hot potato to reduce the risk of burnt out. Get your apps communicating to free up time to chat with friends and family.

“The first rule of any technology used in a business is that automation applied to an efficient operation will magnify the efficiency. The second is that automation applied to an inefficient operation will magnify the inefficiency.” – Bill Gates

3. Outsource

Outsourcing should be done when you already have productivity recipes in place. It’s tempting to hand over parts of your business to a VA or freelancer and forget about it, but this approach could land you in hot water.

With productivity recipes, anyone you hire will have the blueprint of how you expect things to be done. You’ll also save time getting new hires up to speed. Most importantly, your clients won’t get any nasty surprises or unwelcome changes when you grow your team.

You’ll be able to take time out to recharge your batteries, having all the confidence that your business will continue to function properly in your absence.

4. Find some cheerleaders

Being part of a supportive group is crucial to making yourself burn out proof. Informal groups, like Facebook communities, are helpful networks that can prevent you going down the burn out road.

If you’ve been working non-stop and your brain feels as limp as the lettuce in the sandwich you’ve been too busy to eat, connect with people who can identify with where you are and encourage you to take a step back.

The best groups are those that aren’t strictly business. Look for a group with dedicated days for sharing things like inspirational quotes and jokes to lighten things up a little.

Feeling like you’re the only one who experiences overwhelm can be a lonely place. Being part of a community where people share their struggles helps to provide perspective that you can achieve your goals without compromising your health.

“Be strong, be fearless, be beautiful. And believe that anything is possible when you have the right people there to support you.” – Misty Copeland

5. Inject your personality into your passion

When you’re passionate about your work, it seems like you can work day and night without ever feeling tired. Of course, it’s advisable to make time for proper rest. I’ve found that, the more I enjoy work, the more I look after myself to reduce the risks of becoming ill. I’m passionate about helping entrepreneurs be more productive to avoid burn out. I’m also a huge foodie. That’s why I incorporate food and drink analogies in my work because being fed and watered is something we can all relate to.

Injecting your personality into your work makes everything easier. It’s very draining pretending to be someone you’re not. If you’re already pursuing your passion, add a splash of your personality to reduce the chance of burn out.

Suffering from burn out is a serious setback to your health and business. It’s a relief to know that, unlike the burnt toast that ends up in the trash, you can make a full recovery from burn out. But why take the risk in the first place? Put in place practical measures to avoid getting burnt when the heat is turned up in your business.

It’s good to share. What do you put in place to make sure you don’t burn out? Leave a comment below and share your thoughts.

How do you avoid burning out when things get tough? Let us know by commenting below!

Image courtesy of Twenty20.com

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3 Lessons I Learned From the Failure of My First Startup

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You’re exhausted. You’ve put countless of hours into an idea that you believed in so much. Literally almost blood, sweat and tears were sacrificed for this vision to be accomplished. You had hoped and expected for a lot of things, and was excited to have plans for the future.

A few months ago, I wrote an article here titled, “What I Learned After Opening My First Business at 21.” My restaurant was doing well that time, and writing that article made me feel on top of the world. I thought that it was going to be that way for a long time, yet not so long after that, sales started to become stagnant and then declined.

As I write this today, my restaurant has already stopped operations. It stopped a few days ago, but a couple months back, I knew it was bound to happen. We couldn’t keep up with the bills we needed to pay, and they kept accumulating day by day. With a heavy heart and chaotic mind, we knew we had to close it down.

I couldn’t believe this was happening barely one year after starting operations. But if you were to ask me that if I had the chance to start over, would I do it again? I would still say yes. Despite its failure, there were still very important (also expensive) lessons that I learned that I would never have acquired otherwise if I didn’t start the business.

Here are a few lessons I learned after failing my first startup:

1. Entrepreneurship requires resilience

You cannot ever be successful if you haven’t developed resilience. Whether you like it or not, something will turn out wrong in your business. Maybe sometimes not to the point that it needs to be shut down, but something that could make your decisions critical to your organization goals.

You could give yourself time to grieve, but it shouldn’t stop there. Life goes on. And you need to get back on your feet if you still want to make a difference. The biggest companies that are successful right now all experienced a massive amount of failure.

But they never stopped trying. Because with every failure comes a lesson. Anyone with common sense would learn from that failure, and start again with more knowledge on what to do and what not to do.

Whenever I thought about the accumulated debts of my restaurant, I would have this sinking feeling in my chest and stomach. I knew that I would have to liquidate the assets. So I continued to search for buyers of the assets.

Instead of grieving for a much longer period, I knew I’d have to pick myself back up again so I could pay the debt. It might be hard at first, but if you call yourself an entrepreneur, quitting is not an option. We fail, we learn, then get back up.

“Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts.” – Winston Churchill

2. Learn to listen

Being a first-time founder, I had a very idealistic attitude. I had no experience in the food industry and established the business with only the belief that my partners and I would make it. I was wrong.

Aside from not being able to make it with that business, I realized what the naysayers had been telling me all along. But you have to be careful here. There are naysayers who have no credibility to back up what they say and want to bring you down. But there are also ones who speak from experience and are genuinely concerned for you. You must learn to discern the right voices to listen to if you want to succeed.

Taking risks is good, but make sure those risks are calculated and not reckless. We took a risk that wasn’t entirely reckless, but not all aspects of them were calculated. We were unsure of some parts of the business, and just “winged” it. Look at what happened to winging it!

Know when you need to jump with both feet or just one, but also listen to the voices who tell you when to put your feet in the water. Trust me, you never know when you will value their input.

3. Your failures do not define you

I never thought this would take a toll on my self-esteem, even when I knew I had to get back up. On the outside I looked normal. Going to school, work, and social settings looking like nothing had happened. But inside I was a wreck and didn’t want to admit it.

I would feel guilty whenever people would praise me about how “successful” I was at such a young age but that wasn’t true. For a while I thought that I was the failure. My insecurities started haunting me again and my browser history was filled with questions on what to do.

That was when I discovered that successful people failed more often than they succeeded. Even the ones with smaller businesses had their fair share of failures before finding an idea that worked for them.

But their failures never got to their heart. They weren’t the failures. The business failed, not them. So they tried again until they got it right. Maybe this business didn’t work out for me, but that doesn’t mean I’ll never be successful. The sooner you believe your failures don’t define you, the more the weight will be lifted off your shoulders.

People fail every single day. The difference between the ones who succeed and those who don’t is persistence and the drive to continue even after failing. It’s much better to try and fail than never having to start and learn nothing.

“Success is not a good teacher, failure makes you humble.” – Shah Rukh Khan

Have you ever started a business that eventually failed? What did you learn from it? Please leave your experiences below!
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Want A Business Idea That’s Guaranteed To Make You Money? Here’s How You Should Start.

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Let’s first start off with the “why”. When you know why you’re doing something, it can create clarity in your tasks, and direct your efforts. So, grab a sheet of paper, or a notebook and let’s get started.

Answer this question: Why do I want to start a business? Here are some common answers.

  • to do something I love
  • to create financial freedom so I can, “fill in the blank” (travel, pay off debts, buy expensive things, etc.)
  • to have the freedom to set my hours, choose when I work and what I work on
  • to help others, using my skills
  • I hate my job

Once you know why you’re doing it, you’ll have a better idea of what your goals are.

“The two most important days of your life are the day you were born and the day you discover why you were born.” – Mark Twain

Start With Your Skills

At the heart of every business, and profession is the solution to a problem. If you can identify a problem that a group of people are having and solve it for them, you have the makings of a successful business.

Start with your current skill set. Everyone has skills, passions and talents in one area or another. What we fail to sometimes see is the ability for those skills to solve a problem for others in a meaningful way.

You can also ask family and friends to help you identify your skills. They may point out strengths you never considered. Keep in mind you don’t need to have mastered that skill yet, you can continue to learn and develop it as you go along. Ray Higdon a successful business man says to “Invest, learn then teach”.

Invest in yourself and improving your skills, learn more about your niche, and creating solutions to their problems, then teach others what you’ve learned.

Once you’ve got that down, the next step is doing some research. What problems are people having that you could use your current skill set to help solve? This is where picking a niche comes in handy. A niche refers to a small specialized portion of the population.

Let’s say, you’re a stay at home parent, and one of your skills is cooking healthy family meals that your kids enjoy. Your niche will likely be stay at home parents. You can then narrow down your search by checking forums and website or magazines that target stay at home parents.

“If you do what you love, it is the best way to relax.” – Christian Louboutin

What To Look For in Your Research?

Look for pain points and problems, especially those that are recurring. You may find that cooking healthy meals is not necessarily where parents are struggling, maybe it’s with purchasing healthy foods or the cost (money and time) of healthy meals. You want to look at the questions people are asking, and take note of the language they use to describe their problems. Nutritious vs. healthy. Quick vs. easy.

Finally, take note of products that offer solutions to those problems. These offer ideas to you about ways in which you can present your solution; Youtube channels, specialized cookbooks, how-to guides, online courses, etc.

By the time you’ve followed all these steps, you would have established 3 things:

  1. A monetizable skill set — You know what your skills are and how you can use them
  2. Proof of a Need — People have a problem that you can solve, and now you know who they are.
  3. A Profitable Market — If people are buying said cookbooks, or paying for products, this shows you that they are willing to put their money where their mouth is.

This is the beginning of any business. Fast Food restaurants offer quick meals on the go, Walmart puts everything in one place so people don’t have to travel to different stores, books entertain or instruct, cars transport and save time. At the heart of every product and business is a need, and you are now on your way to creating a solution that people are already looking for!

What is a business you want to start? Share your thoughts below!

Image courtesy of Twenty20.com

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7 Essential Email Marketing Tips You Need to Implement Into Your Business Today

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While Email might seem like a fading beauty, this technological dinosaur continues to be the preferred method of communication for the digital age. The rise of smartphones and mobile devices has only added to emails popularity by putting constant communication right in the palm of our hands.

In fact, According to Custora, Email marketing was the biggest driver of Black Friday transactions last fall, with 25.1% of sales originating from email promotions.

With that in mind, here are some tips that are guaranteed to take your Email Marketing to a whole new level:

1. One Element, One Job

Most people try and do way too much with their emails, and you may be guilty of this as well. Follow the simple rule of making each element of your email do just one job, and your emails will become much more effective. The subject line of your email, for example, exists for one reason only: To get your email opened. Your subject line doesn’t need to explain what’s in the email. It doesn’t need to sell, or get clicks. It JUST needs to get your email opened.

That’s it’s job. The body copy of your email exists just for the purposes of getting clicks. That’s it. Each element has its proper place, and if you just make sure they do their job, you’ll see great results.

2. Keep It Short And Sweet

People are busy, and their attention span is limited…So always remember that you’re writing an email, not Homer’s Odyssey. Remember, the body of your email has one job: To get the reader to click. So say what you have to say, keep it short and sweet, and get them to click away from the inbox, and moving along the path towards where you want them.

“Good content is a commodity, great content is a scarcity.”

3. Train Your Subscribers To Click

Every email you write – Every single one – Should have a link in it that your readers can click on, and a call to action encouraging them to do so. If you’re selling something, obviously you would include a link, but if you are sharing content, or telling a story (which is fine, because people love stories) make sure to tell SOME of the story, then offer a link to read the conclusion on a web page or blog.

Link to videos, or other things the reader might find inspiring. Link to your help desk! Whatever it is, you want to train your readers to see your emails, open them, read them, and then CLICK.

4. Be Consistent

Consistency breeds familiarity, and familiarity breeds comfort and trust. And comfortable, trusting people buy stuff! Try opening and closing all your emails with the same introduction and the same sign off. Create a mailing calendar and try emailing the same days every week, or mailing at the same time everyday.

Much like bars offer a happy hour at the same time everyday, maybe you can send a “daily deal” email every afternoon or a weekly summary email. Whatever it is you decide to do, once you decide to do it, be CONSISTENT.

5. Personalize, {name}

Personalization fields are extremely powerful. Multiple studies have shown that the single most powerful word in any language is someone’s OWN name. And so of course, personalization fields that allow you to address your reader by name are incredibly effective. Campaign Monitor has reported that Marketers who use personalization in their subject lines see 26% more opens.

You can also use personalization fields to mention what time it is (no matter where someone is) what city or country someone is in. Even what they’ve bought in previous transactions!

“Email Acquisition is like cutting hair, must happen regularly, can be done well, but one bad experience can scar forever.” – David Baker

6. Segment Your Lists

Modern autoresponders are a miracle of analytical data and automation opportunities. You now have the ability to easily segment your lists, and you should. Separate your prospects from your buyers. Separate buyers by product or category, so you can follow up with smart emails that sell upgrades or related products! You can even separate people who opened and read previous emails from those who haven’t, so you can follow up with people who opened your emails, read them, and clicked, from those who didn’t.

7. Tell Stories

Storytelling is one of the oldest forms of communication known to man. Stories have been used throughout time to pass lore and culture down from generation to generation. And from a marketing standpoint, stories offer a glimpse into who you are, or what your business stands for and how it works.

This information might seem mundane to you, but an outsider will find it fascinating. And as a result, the ability to tell stories will dramatically improve your marketing. If you’re new to storytelling, start by finding friends or co-workers who are particularly fun or engaging. Pay attention to how they command a room through stories and anecdotes. Look for local storytelling events so you can attend, and listen in as master storytellers share their craft.

These 7 tips should drastically improve your email marketing. Start implementing them and be sure to share your results.

What other email marketing strategies would you add to this list? Leave your thoughts below!

Image courtesy of Twenty20.com

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