Three Success Tips From a Cowbird

Three Success Tips From a Cowbird

Or, this article could be titled Three Ways Not to Fail Like a Cowbird.

My husband took this picture in our backyard yesterday. {You know, he’s the one who takes all the bird pictures you see on my sites).

Well, if you’ll notice, the tiny little Brown-Headed Sparrow is feeding the huge juvenile Cowbird. It’s a funny sight, for sure, and makes you wonder why.

Unless you know about Cowbirds.

You see, when a mother Cowbird has an egg to lay, she refuses to take responsibility. So she finds another bird nest – with eggs in it, and lays her egg there. Sometimes, she even knocks an egg out of the nest to make room for hers.

But then she’s off – to no telling where. Free from any responsibility.

In the meantime, the surrogate mother sits on this egg, hatches it, and feeds the young bird until it’s ready to fend for itself.  The baby Cowbird thinks that this is her mother.

Thus, this amazing photo.

When I look at this, I  see an analogy to our online businesses, and I think about the lessons available. Truly we don’t want to live the unfruitful life of a Cowbird, so what can we learn?

Tip #1: Take Responsibility

When we start our online businesses, we usually know very little. We have to learn the tricks. How do we set up our sites, write blog posts, line up our email accounts, and get traffic? And so forth.

There’s a lot to learn, for sure. And it’s easy to stay in that “I just need to learn one more thing” mode.

So we can buy shiny object after shiny object, and listen to webinar after webinar, without ever grabbing the reins of our own business and taking charge.

We somehow are expecting someone else to do it for us.

If we learn enough, it might just happen.

But that’s not how it works.

For us to succeed online – or in any endeavor – we have to take charge of our own business. We own it. We put the training together in our minds as to what will help us fulfill our mission.

We are the captains of our ship. We take responsibility.

When that day comes – the day we take responsibility – things change. We still need to learn and to network, but we have confidence that our own business is going to make it.

And that’s when it begins to happen.

Tip #2  Follow Through

This is a big one.

The Cowbird does come up with the idea of laying the egg, but that’s the end of what she does.

If we want to be successful, we have to follow through with our plans – and not desert them.

Over the time that I have been online, I have seen many deserted plans.

When this first happened, I was shocked. I had just started my business and signed up for a challenge. The leader had lots of promises to us. Well one by one, she dropped the promises. She promised to send her book, and it never came. She promised to participate in a podcast, and didn’t.

The trust element was smashed, and I didn’t do business with that person for a couple of years.

Later I learned that this lady was going through some serious health issues at the time. If only she had explained somewhat, I would have understood. But her actions just led me to believe that she was unreliable.

Since that time, I have encountered many others change plans and redirect their missions. That happens in a growing business.

When those leaders have explained and offered an alternative for what I had expected, their trust level actually increased.

I knew that they were aware of their promises and trying to fulfill them even as they changed directions.

One more importance of following through is that without this practice, you will leave unfinished work. And unfinished work never hits your target.

Unfinished business can never brings results.

So we come to…

Tip #3   Enjoy the Fruits of Your Labor

When you look at the little Sparrow feeding the Cowbird, you can’t help but think of how the real mother is missing out.

After building the nest and sitting on the eggs all of that time, the mother must feel some satisfaction in seeing the offspring develop into an adult.

Certainly, when you have developed an online business which helps others, you must feel some satisfaction in what you are doing. And you should.

A successful online business is one facet of a happy, productive life. Even more success will come your way when you find a plan that you enjoy in a niche you love.

As you develop your plans and bring value to your niche,  you will be amazed at how your business unfolds. Because of your sincere interest in your people and your niche, doors will open and networks will form. Sometimes almost effortlessly.

As you enjoy what you are doing, greater levels of success are easier to achieve.

You remember the saying

When you  love what you do, you never work a day in your life      -Steve Jobs

I have to add: honestly,

When you love what you do, it sometimes seems like work, but your satisfaction will far outweigh the negative…

So there you have them. Three tips from a Cowbird.

Take Responsibility, Follow Through, and Enjoy What You Do.

If you take these three guidelines and run with them, you are headed for a successful endeavor.

Let’s do this!

 

 

Is It a Shiny Object or Is It a Tool?

Is It a Shiny Object or Is It a Tool?

Introducing the World’s Greatest Bundle

Sometimes the internet business can seem overwhelming. We look for answers online, and we make a purchase of training or software, because we think that this is our answer. They promise us that it is.

But it isn’t.

So we look for another answer.

If we aren’t careful, we can jump from one promise to another and never make it happen.

That’s what is referred to as the “Shiny Object Syndrome.”

The truth is that some of those “Shiny Objects” do work, but they are part of the whole – and not the complete package.

That’s why I like the Big Picture approach.

Think about a spy movie you might have seen. Back in the headquarters, surrounded by a sci-fi version of computer screens, the experts are doing a search. They are looking for a couple of bad guys who are hiding in a tent in a north African desert.

They start focusing satellites toward the general area until they spot something which might be their target. So they zoom and zoom until they clearly see these people along with their cohorts, their tents, trucks, and ammunition. Zoom a little more, and the faces become clear.

The big picture first and then detail, and your plans begin to work.

That’s why it’s important to have a vision in mind. What do you want to accomplish? Who is your audience? How will you make money?

When these big picture foundations are laid, then the pieces begin to fit. Like a big puzzle.

Using another example…

When you dump out the pieces of a 1000 piece puzzle and pick up one piece, you have no idea where this piece might fit. But you look at the picture on the box. You lay your border pieces, and you begin comparing each piece to the picture. Bit by bit, you will be able to put it all together.

It’s similar with your internet business.

You will begin to understand why you need a website, and how to maximize its impact.

Why you need an email list.

Why you need to connect with others.

Why you need social media.

Why you need SEO.

And you will continue to grow in your ability to apply these pieces.

Your bottom line will also grow. Your bottom line and your influence.

Let me encourage you to spend some time really honing in on your vision of where you are going and what you want to do. Make it clear. Get pictures in your mind. Write the vision. Set up a vision board.

Then it will be easier to see what to do next.

Then you will be ready for the pieces of training to help you reach your goal.

Those important trainings will be tools and not shiny objects.

Now I want to make sure that you know about some excellent tools which are available this week only.

This week only, Dan Morris and Rachel Martin are offering their once-a-year Bundle of experts from around the world. It’s called BCStack 2020 and it’s famous as the biggest bundle ever. 65 collaborators from all over the world bring their trainings and products. Thousands of dollars worth for one small fee.

You will have 60 days to access the products. You can save them to your computer and use them as you are ready for each phase.

Dan and Rachel also have a Facebook group set up so that you can ask questions. They will be happy to share what would work best for each particular phase of your business. Just ask them.

This bundle would be too much for anyone to use immediately. But once you download the trainings, they are yours forever. You can pull them out to use whenever you are ready.

Be sure to check this bundle out HERE.

Remember, don’t let these be shiny objects which would take you on a tangent. Let them be a collection of tools for use over a period of time. You will be glad you have them available.

 

 

2020 Reboot

2020 Reboot

Are you ready for a reboot? Are you ready to clarify your vision and find the right path?

In the book of Proverbs, there are two paths mentioned – one of them more than once.

The first says There is a way that appears to be right, but in the end it leads to death. (Proverbs 14:12 and 16:25 NIV)

You notice that’s stated twice. It must be important.

So what could this mean?

Look around. Almost everything is negative. The virus, the riots, the political climate. Everything seems negative.

Well, everyone is saying it. It must be right. Right?

No. Just because you are being bombarded with these negative ideas and emotions, doesn’t mean that you have to enter the fray.

That path might seem right to man, but the end of it is death. Death of your dreams.  Death of your business. Death of your health, if you allow yourself to stay in that mindset.

I prefer the second path.The path of the righteous is like the morning sun, shining ever brighter to the full light of day. (Proverbs 4:18 NIV)

That’s not to say that there won’t be obstacles and down moments.

However, through your faith in God, you can realize that you are an overcomer. You will be strong and courageous. You will choose to let your mind dwell on good things.

Of course, you will be wise and use precautions, and you will keep up with what is going on around you.

However, you won’t have negative news and thoughts pounding your ears and mind. You will think about God’s Word and His faithfulness to you.

This can be your time to rise to new heights.

If you are ready to reboot 2020 and declare it’s a year of promise, take a look at Connie Ragen Green’s free 2020 Vision Quest Challenge. Her challenge will bring boldness and clarity to you help you set your path.

I’ve known Connie for several years now, and have benefited from lots of her training. She is refreshingly authentic, and really smart in her approach to business.

You can get your free 2020 Vision Quest Challenge by clicking HERE.

Take a look.You’ll be glad you did.

Blessings and Keep on Soaring…

One Extraordinary Man

One Extraordinary Man

One of the greatest privileges of my life was the time my husband and I spent with Bishop Hardy Lee Coleman, Sr and his wife, Ann.

He was in his nineties, and slowing down a bit, when we began visiting him in his home. And Bishop began to reminisce. At this time in his life, Bishop Coleman oversaw a large collection of churches throughout the area – and as far away as Memphis, Chicago and Atlanta. He was well-known throughout the country in his denomination, as he was often a featured speaker. He was also well-known throughout north Mississippi – even having the City of Ripley pronounce a special day honoring him and his accomplishments.

But it hadn’t always been that way.

In fact, when he was born in a small wooden shack, on a farm, on a dirt road – way back in the Mississippi countryside, nobody could have guessed the impact Hardy Coleman would make someday.

As we listened to him, my heart cried out. His story will inspire so many people and change so many lives. In fact, his story had already inspired many.

So I began writing a biography of his life. We spent hours sitting, listening, and taking notes. And more hours riding around the Mississippi countryside seeing where this and that occurred.

In the story of this remarkable man, there are many lessons. Lessons about hope and vision and determination and faithfulness to God.

Bishop was born to a sharecropper, and as such, at an early age learned to work with him in the fields. Hoeing rows by hand, picking cotton, and more. Backbreaking work.

Sharecroppers were those who would  work the farms of owners, living on the farms, and sharing in the crops. They were usually very poor.

Then when he was 12 years old, his father suddenly left the family. Hardy was heartbroken because of his attachment. And besides, now he was the one in charge of bringing in the livelihood for himself and his mother.

No school. Just work. At 12 years old.

Bishop Coleman shared about the life he lived with the other young people in the community. After work, the boys would sneak around the dusty roads and woods smoking cigarettes, drinking some moonshine, and talking about girls. He was having fun after the long hot days of work.

Yet something else was going on in the farm community. There were church meetings being held in an old schoolhouse, and the people were “making a lot of noise” in their services. Young Hardy and his friends would peep through the windows to see what was happening.

People were turning their lives to Jesus. Others were going to the altar to receive prayer for healing. And some were getting healed.

One night, Hardy was going out walking with his friends when suddenly he had a change of plans. He decided to go to one of the church meetings, and his life changed forever. Almost without realizing what he was doing, the young teenager walked to the front to receive Jesus.

It was a total turnaround. After that, he never looked back. The rest of his life he was determined to do what God was leading him to do. Soon, he was called into the ministry – and began preaching at the age of 19.

Bishop’s motto became, Some people like to watch things happen. I like to make things happen.

And did he ever make things happen!

He planted churches in Mississippi, Memphis, Atlanta, and Chicago. He grew in stature within his denomination. He ministered tirelessly to the people in his congregations — helping them with their natural needs as well as their spiritual.

Bishop Coleman’s ministry changed the face of the rural counties of north Mississippi. And he never stopped until he went to be with the Lord at 93.

When Bishop was 80 years old he designed and built a huge facility as a convention center in Tupelo. (And when I say built, I mean he did a lot of the physical labor). It was a place for the churches to come together, worshiping God and listening to inspiring messages from the Bible.

So what were some of the lessons I learned from Bishop? They were wrapped up in the characteristics he displayed.

  1. Bishop Coleman was faithful to God and continued to follow His leading as he expanded his ministry and influence. He never let fame and success cause pride to rise up. Bishop always stayed humble.
  2. Bishop Coleman never allowed himself to be bitter. When you hear of his tough situation, and some of the injustices he suffered, you realize that many people would have been bitter. However, he considered that a weakness. It would only slow him down from what he wanted to accomplish.
  3. Bishop Coleman was unstoppable. Bishop encountered obstacle after obstacle, but he never stopped. He lost a child at an early age and his wife died prematurely. People mocked him and his high aspirations. Nothing stopped him.
  4. Bishop Coleman was always ready for the next assignment. He was always full of hope and vision – reaching out for the next mission from God.

As a result, Bishop Coleman impacted an entire region – and beyond. He raised a large, vibrant family of achievers. Sons, daughters, grandchildren, and great grandchildren. And even more spiritual sons and daughters. People who he introduced to God and who would follow His lead for great achievement.

There is so much more to be said about Bishop Hardy Coleman. Too much to say here.

Let me just wind this up by saying that his life is a reminder to me that regardless of my circumstances at any given moment, God is faithful. I can turn to Him for comfort, hope, vision, and wisdom which will lift me up.

And you can too. He’s there for you.

Keep on Soaring!

 

Draw Your Crowd

Draw Your Crowd

I “overheard” an interesting twitter conversation recently. Two marketers were discussing fun facts, when one dropped a bombshell.

Back in the nineties when he started his online business, this marketer encountered a guy named Jeff Bezos on a forum. Bezos had started an online bookstore called Amazon Books, and he was thinking about opening it up for affiliate marketing. What did everyone think?

Wow!

Little did any of those know that today Jeff Bezos would be one of the richest men in the world. And largely because of the affiliate marketing he was discussing.

By affiliate marketing, Bezos had opened his business to friends – and friends’ friends. And on and on until he reached the tipping point.

This conversation started my mind popping. What if he had decided not to affiliate market?

Let’s look at another scenario…

What if Jeff Bezos had opened up a Book Rack Kiosk at one end of a mall in mid America? Where would he be today?

True, he has an excellent product – with great delivery and customer service. But without the visibility he received through marketing, Amazon.com would never have reached its present position.

Marketing is key for the success of any business – and especially for one that’s on the internet.

So we put up our blogs or websites. We work hard to make sure that they look beautiful and that they work properly. We add special themes and plugins. We solicit the aid of sophisticated software.

But for this to be successful, somebody has to come and buy. If nobody notices, we are just playing. If nobody comes, it’s a hobby. And it can grow to be an expensive hobby.

On the other hand, all of this work can be the foundation for a very successful business. One which is successful and prosperous. One which makes us lots of money. One which provides lots of satisfaction and reward for our efforts.

Out in that digital world there are enough clients and customers for all of us to have very successful businesses. When we learn how to reach out for them and let them know we are here, they will want what we have to offer. Then when we give them great benefit, they will be loyal customers.

So what do we do?

As always, we start with a vision and a plan. We look at the many marketing strategies which can work for us, and we decide how we are going to activate them.

We will start where we can, and we grow from there.

The main questions we ask ourselves are Where do we want to be in a year? In 5 years? And What do we have to do to get there?

My recommendation is that every day you “do” something to move forward your marketing goals. Whether it’s writing a blog post, engaging on Social Media, sending out a publicity pitch, or fine tuning your SEO.

It’s the everyday engagement and not a once-in-awhile big splash which makes things happen. (I know this from experience).

So do this..

Begin each day with purpose and determination, keeping focused on your goals.

As a Christian, I like to start my day with prayer. I know that God wants me to be successful in every endeavor, so I thank Him for His guidance and direction. I also thank Him for the people He is helping me to connect with, and for the opportunities which are becoming available.

I pray for the Holy Spirit’s guidance. I also listen and attempt to stay focused on His direction.

I pray that I will not yield to distractions, but that I will be certain which doors are opening for me. I also pray for my creativity to flow in all of my endeavors.

And one more thing…

Let’s all realize that there is a big, wide world out there full of people who need to hear what we have to say. Or need to receive from us in some way.

As we prepare our products for them and then let them know through marketing, we will have more than enough clients to be over-the-top successful.

We”ll get there…let’s keep on Soaring!

 

P.S. My  book, How to Draw Your Crowd is coming soon. It’s a look at the many ways to get that crowd coming to your site. I’ll keep you posted.