Blog post

The WORST business advice I’ve ever been given…

August 22, 2018

How i flipped crap sales into consistent subscription revenue

“Markie…something isn’t working.  Nothing is growing.  I know my message is spot on, but nothing seems to be working.”

“Just keep pushing girl…you’ll get there.”

Hello, my subscription revenue chumie chums!!

Today, I have a little learnin’ story for you. This story takes place in the ye’ olden times of 2014.  A dark…dark period for Uncork Your Dork.

I have a friend.  We’ll call him Markie Mark.

Six years ago when I moved from Washington, D.C. to Seattle for a new start, (ahem…a new start that took nearly FIVE years to happen) Markie Mark was one of the first folks to welcome me. (He is an East Coaster himself…so the welcome sounded VERY *ahem* Fonzie-esque !!)

Markie and I QUICKLY learned that we had a love for business and business talk in common…we STILL fill our hours chatting it up about business and marketing tactics. Our best conversations, however?  Are all about growth.

About four years ago, I was trying to make the transition from a photography business to a purely online business helping online entrepreneurs launch and grow.

Only problem?  My OWN business wasn’t growing!!  I had successfully been one of the biggest photography names in the DC area…but now I was on page 159 of Google.

(Yep…part hardy time with big names like “Suzie’s Socks Incorporated” and “Torque for You”.  Head/desk.)

Ahem.  Anyhoo!!  Point is…I wasn’t being seen.  My message was strong…but I was doing the equivalent of Karaoke in my car.  I looked fabulous, but people were passing on by.

One evening, after drinks with Markie and his fam, we got to talking about the business. He asked me how things were going.

He KNEW about my dreams.  He KNEW about my plans.  He wanted to know how all of it was panning out.

“Markie…something isn’t working.  Nothing is growing.  I know my message is spot on, but nothing seems to be working.”

“Just keep pushing girl…you’ll get there.” 

FOR THE RECORD, Markie’s advice is almost always spot on…but here is a good time to mention, NO ONE is right all of the time!!  Those big names you adore in your niche? Yeah…I GUARANTEE you they’ve given you advice that just wasn’t right for you. (Hell…I’m SURE my own advice isn’t perfect for everyone!)

The advice “Just keep pushing girl…you’ll get there.” Seems like great, fatherly advice.  It’s a very “you can do it” mentality.

I LOVE that mentality.  I’m a rhino, after all.

Unfortunately, that advice is about as bad as it gets.  The QUICKEST way to get your business moving in the right direction, is spend some time really trying to figure out where your problems and holes ARE…and to patch them up.

In 2014, my major gaps in business were: 

  • I wasn’t 100% positive my message was clear. I was just hoping it was.
  • My business wasn’t memorable.
  • I wasn’t consistent.
  • Rebel Alliance
    I had ZERO traffic.
  • Rebel Alliance
    I wasn’t focusing on my list…just on my social media.
  • Rebel Alliance
    AND…I wasn’t making any consistent revenue.

That looks like a daunting list…I fully understand that!  In fact, after I made that list…I did a ten minute job search.  (Then I remembered I make LITERALLY the worst employee on the planet.)

Once I was able to sit back and be REALISTIC about my “issues” I could see where multiple holes could be plugged at once. (Cue the blushing.) .

For Example: 

  • By focusing on longer form content, like video…I could create consistent weekly emails, blog posts, and social media content out of ONE MP4.  (If you use a website like Temi.com, you can transcribe your videos in a matter of minutes…then spit shine them to a beautiful blog post!) This ALSO helped with generating more traffic and building my list via blog post opt-ins.
  • Rebel Alliance
     Updating my branding to the more modern comic book/vintage style you see on Uncork Your Dork today helped me stand out in my field…and increase my traffic through word of mouth!
  • Rebel Alliance
     Finally,  I needed to increase my revenue.  I had a small list.  But it wasn’t focused. With every launch I made…I would get 1-2 sales. Unfortunately, here in America, we don’t use a barter system…(my landlord wasn’t a fan when I tried to barter my blogging services for a month’s rent…lemme tell ya.)

SO…to solve that last “rent” issue, I KNEW I needed to create something that I could just simply focus on growing.

No more creating a course…launch a course…cross your fingers.

No more long nights HOPING my sales copy was actually effective.

No more falling asleep dreaming of my success, only to wake up with NOTHING in the Paypal.

I needed a paycheck WITHOUT the 9-5 boss man.

THAT’S when I decided launch first subscription revenue product, and shortly afterwards…the Wham! Bam! Business Plan! membership.

Don’t get me wrong!!! I definitely still have problems in business!! That’s the name of the business game!!  You find the holes, you plug ’em, you find more holes.

BUT, my business is finally profitable…and fun to run.

"No business is created in a linear fashion, & there are always going to be twists & turns, ups & downs, and vomit-inducing towers of terror."

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So…let’s go back to the title of this post for a second, shall we?  “The worst business advice I’ve ever been given…”

Simply put, to counteract the “Just keep truckin'” advice…

“Keep pushing…but only when you know it’s right!”

It is SO important to realize where you need to be growing and changing. No business is created in a linear fashion, and there are ALWAYS going to be twists and turns, ups and downs, and a vomit-inducing Tower of Terror in every business path.

Don’t give up.  Be a rhino.  BUT…know when to change and how to morph, because there will ALSO be some of the most amazingly self-satisfying highs you could experience.

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