The Single Most Powerful Principal For Starting A Business

There have been a lot of smart men in history.  One of them, an economist named Vilfredo Pareto, was smarter than most.  He understood a principle in business that has stuck, and continues getting repeated year, after year.  That rule is, of course, Pareto’s rule, or Pareto’s Principle.

In short, he defines a phenomena that states only 20% of the effort you put into your business is going to produce 80% of the results.  In other words, the 80/20 rule.  The reason this principle has stayed so popular is because it can be applied to just about any area of your life, business, or relationships.

Let’s look at a few specific examples of the 80/20 rule in action.

A company applies the rule to their business’ product sales line.  By doing so, the company knows that 80% of their sales are going to come from 20% of their customers.

The same company also knows that, in terms of human resource problems, 20% of the employees are going to present 80% of the problems.

Another example from our hypothetical company would be customer complaints.  A business manager will know that 80% of the customer complaints are going to only be coming from a small 20% subset of their customer base.  80% of the company’s production comes from 20% of the employees.

The rule has been used in business because it can easily be adapted to just about any situation.  It also gives a fairly clear view of what needs to be focused on, and what requires the most attention inside of a company.

While it is a good way to evaluate yourself, your business, and your life, it’s not always foolproof.  That means you shouldn’t necessarily rely on the Pareto principle for every aspect of your business, rather, you should be using it to determine the small subsets of your business where you’re going to see the biggest returns.

So how can you apply this powerful, time-tested rule in your own business?

Think about it for a second.

While the rule applies to just about every industry, when it comes to building an online business the rules are a little bit different.  Look at different, hypothetical scenarios so you’ll know what to expect, and be aware of the areas you need to focus your efforts.

20% of the marketing and promotion efforts you do for your business are going to bring in 80% of your visitors.

As you build out your blog, or website, you’re going to start gathering natural, organic traffic.  Once you start focusing more on marketing your business, you’ll start to see patterns.  If you create 10 different email proposals to reach out for guest posting, you’ll notice that 2 of them tend to get a better response.  Take those 2 proposals and turn them into templates that you can send out to other blog owners.

20% of your visitors are going to make up 80% of your total sales.

From your marketing efforts and build up your traffic, you’ll begin to notice that 20% of your visitors will make up the sales that you produce.  It may not happen the first time your visitor arrives, but, on average, you’ll be able to convert 200 people out of 1,000 into a sale at some point in your sales funnel, if you’ve planned it out to efficiently produce for you.

20% of the pages on your website are going to be responsible for 80% of your traffic.

Whether you’ve designed the content to funnel traffic into certain parts of your site, or it happens naturally, 20% of the pages you create, or blog posts you write, are going to be responsible for 80% of the traffic you receive.  Sometimes it happens because a post, or page gets shared across social media.  Other times, it happens because you’ve designed the content as a sales funnel.

20% of your customers are going to make up 80% of your customer service issues.

Your customers are the lifeblood of your business.  If you sell 1,000 products, you’re going to end up receiving around 200 customer questions, concerns, or complaints.  Of those 200, 20% of them — or 40 — customers are going to require more of your time than others.

It doesn’t matter how you break it down, either.  Pareto’s Principle is endless, meaning that you can apply it infinitely to any area of your business.  Mastering the principle is going to be crucial to being successful in anything you do.

What I mean by that is this.  If you have 1,000 readers, 200 of them may purchase from you.  Of those 200, applying the 80/20 rule again, 20% of them — or 40 customers — are going to make up the largest portion of sales.

You can go on, and on, with the different scenarios and figure out how to apply Pareto’s rule to each.  The point of this post is to make you aware of the principal, and show you how it relates to building an online business.

It’s not a hard, fast rule, but it applies to brick and mortar businesses, online businesses, and can be applied to any aspect of your life — helping you find a good balance.

Cheers,

-Marshall

HOW TO SETUP A WORDPRESS BLOG IN 10 MINUTES OR LESS

How To Setup A WordPress Blog In 10 Minutes or LEss

women blogger

Are you passionate ABOUT SOMETHING? DO YOU LIKE TO WRITE? Do you have a story that needs to be told? Do you want to generate passive income for your family?

Starting a blog might be your answer.

Blogs are no longer just for the “professional writer”. They are for the thinker, the designer, the mother, the craftsman, and the teacher.

In 2014, I decided to start blogging and building my personal platform. It’s now become part of my full-time career and it has allowed me to make a living from the things I am most passionate about.

Sadly, I see many people not chase their dream because their either don’t know where to start or the “setup process” is too complex.

But its not. Below I have outlined an easy step-by-step guide to getting a domain, setting up hosting, and installing WordPress in 10 minutes or less.

There are many ways to setup a blog but you will get the most control by using self-hosted WordPress blog. This is what most serious bloggers use. This is what I use here at DalePartridge.com

IMPORTANT: The first step for setting up a blog is buying a domain and setting up hosting. If you are not sure about the difference between hosted and self-hosted WordPress, I found this helpful infographic that explains it well. My verdict… stay away from WordPress.com. It’s limiting and does not allow your blog to scale well.

To Get Started You’ll Need 3 Items:

1. A Credit Card ( Average startup costs can be around $50 – sometimes less and sometimes a little more depending on upgrades)
2. A Domain Name
3. Setup Hosting
4. WordPress
5. A Theme To Install

Step #1: Buying A Domain Name

The domain name of my blog is MovingMountains.co. That’s where people have come to find me on the web. Choosing a good domain can be tough. Your domain can either be your name or a branded domain like MovingMountains.co. Luckily, the hosting company I will recommend in step #2 provides you a free domain when you sign up.

Step #2 Setting Up A Hosting Account.

This is where your blog will “live.” This is a server in the cloud (i.e., a remote computer), where you will rent space to install the WordPress software and manage your blog. It’s far easier than it sounds. Stick with me.

There are a hundreds of hosting services available. However, based on my experience and research, I recommend Bluehost. I believe it is the best option for most people for the following several reasons:

  1. Bluehost is large and well known.
  2. They offer excellent customer service (located in the US).
  3. Their packages are highly affordable and include domain names. Way less work.
  4. Their service provides extremely fast page load times.
  5. Bluehost is very easy to use.

ACTION STEP: Click HERE to buy your domain and signup for hosting with Bluehost. I have provided a visual guide of the steps below. 

BLUEHOST STEP #1

Visit This Link (the same as the one above) and Click “Get Started Now” button.

step1

BLUEHOST STEP #2

Choose your plan.
step2

BLUEHOST STEP #3

Choose your free domain name or bring over your current domain. Both are very easy processes.

bluehost-domain

BLUEHOST STEP #4

Place your order and pay for your plan.

step3

BLUEHOST STEP #5

Once you’ve logged in, you will be taken to your Bluehost dashboard where you can install WordPress (the software that runs your blog) in a few simple clicks.

step4

BLUEHOST STEP #6

Click the the green install button.

step5

BLUEHOST STEP #7

Choose the domain you just registered or the one you brought over.

step6

BLUEHOST STEP #8

Check the “Show advanced options” box and fill in the title, username, and password. Your title will be the name of your blog (mine would be Dale Partridge). The username and password will be what you use to login to the backend of your blog (your WordPress dashboard).

IMPORTANT: Save this information somewhere where you won’t lose it. You will need it for step #10

step7

BLUEHOST STEP #9

Bluehost will install WordPress on your server and let you know when it’s complete.

step8

Click the “View Credentials” button on the top right.
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BLUEHOST STEP #10

Click on “Admin URL” (located below the green box) and enter your WordPress login credentials from step #8. This will take you to your WordPress dashboard. Your WordPress dashboard is where you will do almost everything on your blog. From writing articles to changing design.

step10

step11

FINAL STEP

This is your WordPress Dashboard. You can either begin blogging or upload a new theme for your blog. I would recommend purchasing a new WordPress theme at Themeforest.net. At ThemeForest, in the navigation go to “WordPress” in the upper left section of the page. Then choose your theme type and begin exploring thousands of themes. After purchasing your theme from Themeforest, you will return to your WordPress dashboard and click “Appearance” > Themes > Upload a New Theme. Here you will upload the .zip file of the theme your just purchased.

Lastly, you will then follow your theme’s setup features provided by the person who developed your theme. This is where you will upload your logo, change colors, add pages, and more.

Congratulations! You have officially setup your blog. This is only the beginning of an exciting journey for you. BIG THINGS!

 

 

 

5 Signs You Are Absolutely Taking On More Than You Should

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Being seen as successful is something that drives nearly all human beings.  From birth, we’re taught to take on more, and more responsibility because it’s a way to show the world we have our stuff together.  However, what happens when you’ve found yourself taking on too much?  Are you even aware that you could possibly be taking on too much responsibility, already?

We find ourselves in this position because it’s simply so hard to say “no” to people.  It’s much easier to say “yes” when someone asks us to do something for them, because we don’t want people to think about us as being unreliable, or unable to help them with their problems.  There are a few warning signs you can use, if you’re aware of them, that will help you identify when you’re taking on too much responsibility.

1. Your Little Voice Is Warning You Of Impending Doom

That little voice in your head?  You should probably listen to it.  It’s the voice of reason, and it knows you better than you know yourself.  If you hear the voices in your head telling you that you’re taking on too much, it’s probably time to stop and listen.

Since you know yourself better than anyone else, you need to pay attention to what’s going on around you if you’re feeling overwhelmed.  It may be time to take a step back and analyze your life, to figure out what’s holding you back, what’s actually necessary for you to move forward, and what you’re currently doing that can be dropped without noticing any differences.

2. Short Breaks Just Make You Even More Anxious

One easy way to tell that you’re overwhelmed is when taking short breaks just won’t work to help you relax anymore.  If you’re finding yourself looking for longer, and longer breaks, or wanting to take naps throughout the day, you’re probably overworked — and overwhelmed.  If taking a short, 15 minute break doesn’t help remove your anxiety, you’re taking on too much.

The best way to get around this issue is to make sure that you’re sleeping well at night.  Often, when short breaks throughout the day won’t work to help re-energize you, your sleep schedule is to blame.  It’s easy to give up sleep, though, when you’ve got so much going on.  If this sounds like you, look into how well you’re sleeping at night — as well as your mattress, pillows, and even the blankets you use to sleep with.

3. You’re Starting To Make Mistakes, And Forget Things

After your sleep patterns start to become out of whack, you’re going to notice other physical changes that manifest themselves throughout the day.  When was the last time you found yourself doing something, only to stop halfway through and wonder exactly what it is you started out doing, in the first place?  If you’re overwhelmed, it probably happens more often than you’re realizing.

Making small mistakes in your day to day routines means that you are spending time focusing on too many things, and not enough time on the task at hand.  This can be a dangerous situation, especially when you’re involved in activities such as heavy lifting, driving, or caring for small children.  If you’ve found yourself constantly forgetting, and making mistakes, it’s probably time to take a step back and maybe even consider a vacation.

4. Exercise, Eating Habits, and Hobbies Have Become Forbidden Words

If you look at the life you once lead, do you see things like eating healthy, exercising on a regular basis, and actually enjoying a few hobbies every now, and then?  If you used to do those things but have found yourself not being able to find the motivation to enjoy your hobbies, or that your appetite has begun to suffer and you’ve adopted unhealthy eating habits, you’re probably overloaded with too much, right now.

Regular exercise is one of the first things to go when you start finding yourself getting bogged down.  It’s only natural that it happens.  When it comes to your to do list, exercising starts to feel like you’re taking valuable time away from something else that should really be getting done today.  And then it happens.  You tell yourself that you’ll exercise tomorrow, but tomorrow never comes.

5. Your Family Said So.

The people around you know you and your routines, and will be able to let you know when you’re looking a bit worn down and possibly needing a break.  If your family and friends have begun asking certain questions, digging into what’s going on in your daily life, they are probably starting to become concerned about you.  This is especially true if they’re consistently bringing up your health.

It’s easy to get addicted to making money online, and the thought of finally being able to make all of your dreams come true.  This addiction is something that you have to become aware of, because it works just like any other addiction — robbing you of your health, motivation, and the ability to actually move forward — instead of continuing to dream about what you could achieve.

The #1 Way Moms Are Making Real Money Without A 9-5 Job

There are tons of articles online about making money from home without the dreaded 9-5 slog into an office. A lot however, aren’t exactly what they seem.

For example, a very trendy, up and coming company –  LuLaRoe Clothing – has taken midwest moms by storm. If you aren’t familiar with LuLaRoe, it leverages “affiliates” to sell clothing to their network -i.e. hustle clothing to your peers. Participants are sold the vision of wealth and financial freedom but can only start in the business after “investing” into becoming a consultant. According to a new 1 BILLION dollar lawsuit (largest ever for something like this),  LuLaRoe encouraged participants to run up credit card debt and even “sell breast milk” to get started. Woa. Scary.

So what is a real way to earn real money without selling your first born to get started? Enter Driving for Lyft.

Lyft has become one of the top earning platforms for moms and we’ve compiled a few pretty compelling reasons why after talking to a few moms who are absolutely crushing it with Lyft:

It is safe.

It can be a scary world out there but not so much with Lyft. You are in your own car and driving on your own terms. Rider profiles are complete and tied to real payment methods allowing you to interact with verified people (no internet trolls allowed). You can choose your hours and work the daylight shift vs. the 2am pub crawl. Every move you make is tracked and monitored, which for safety feels pretty good.

It pays out fast and furiously.

Not only does it pay out weekly. If you are low on gas, you can request a quick payout and from what the drivers tell us, you get it pretty much right on the spot. Not waiting 2 weeks for the angry PR lady to hand you a check is pretty nice plus let’s get real – bills don’t wait to get paid. Thanks Lyft.

You can set your own hours.

This is one of the biggest benefits according to Lyft drivers. You literally get in your car and turn the app on and you are live. Want to stop, turn it off. One driver said they take rides only while their kid is in school. Another driver who was saving to buy a house (how cool is that), will grab a few rides after work to help bring in extra money.

The mom mobile is a premium service.

Ever think the soccer minivan or SUV would be coveted?  Well it is. With Lyft, bigger parties need more space. Minivans and SUVs are needed for more than two riders or riders with luggage. All pay a premium.

Interested in checking out what Lyft has to offer? You can check it out here no strings attached. What do you have to lose?

 

 

How To Come Up With Great Ideas For Blog Topics

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When you’re away from your computer it seems like ideas for amazing new blog posts come to you left, and right.  Once you get to sit down to work, though, it’s a completely different story.  Those amazing ideas that were once overwhelming you seem to have completely disappeared.

This is a common problem that happens to just about everybody at some point in time.  The more you struggle with forcing an idea, the worse the problem gets.

The first step is to RELAX. Don’t stress. Just get comfortable – ideas tend to flow when you are unrestricted and peaceful. Find your “zen” place.

Second, there are lot of great online tools that I and other bloggers use to come up with new ideas. You can use these simple tools to help get your creative juices flowing if you happen to find yourself struggling for what to write. Here we go:

GOOGLE KEYWORD PLANNER

The Adwords Keyword Planner or Google Keyword Planner, whatever you want to call it, is a tool from Google that will help you come up with some ideas to write about on your blog.  You’re also helping set the foundation for your blog to receive increased search traffic by including keywords that people are searching for.

This strategy works to help break through your writer’s block by showing you what people are searching for, related to your blog, and how often they are searching for it each month.  That information gives you an easy way to see the topics you should be covering with your blog, and helps let Google know what your blog is about — helping you tap into your share of that coveted search engine traffic.

All you have to do is write a blog post around the keyword, solving the problem or providing the answers that the searcher is looking for, and let Google take care of the rest. Link is here.

BUZZSUMO

BuzzSumo gives you ideas for blog posts to write about, but also gives your social media marketing campaign a head start.  This tool gathers all of the blog posts and articles related to the keywords you enter and sorts them based on the amount of social shares they’ve received since they were published.

As you read through the results that BuzzSumo returns when you enter your keywords, you’ll start to gather ideas about what you should be covering with your blog posts, and how to write in a way that your audience will respond to.  This makes it a lot easier for you when you actively start promoting your blog on social media sites like Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and more. Link is here.

QUESTION & ANSWER SITES

Sites like Quora and Yahoo! Answers are chock full of new blog posts ideas waiting for you to dig through.  These two sites, and others like them, allow users to submit questions that the general public are able to answer.  The answers that other users leave for the original poster are then rated, and sorted by the best answers first.

Having data that’s easily accessed and sorted by outside users gives you both the idea for the problem you need to solve, provided by the question that was originally asked, as well as what other users consider the best answer — giving you an idea how to angle your blog post for the most effect.

FORUMS & SOCIAL MEDIA

If you’ve spent any amount of time on social media platforms, or forums where your customers and readers hang out, you have probably already seen the sheer volume of questions that get asked on a daily basis.  If you’re not already active in the communities where your potential readers and customers are at, you need to find them and get active.  You can search for forums on Google, and communities on Facebook.

When you see the same question coming up on a regular basis, instead of providing a short answer in the group you’re a part of, or on the forum that you’re active in, try providing the complete solution to their problem in the form of a blog post.  This will introduce your blog to a new group of readers, reinforce your message with the reader’s who have already seen you, and give you an increased presence in the communities you’re hanging out in.

ASK YOUR READERS.

If you already have a foundation of readers on your blog, one of the best ways to come up with new topics to cover is simply to ask them what they want to see.  Sites like SurveyMonkey will let you create surveys you can send to your audience to find out exactly what they think, and learn a bit more about who they are.

If you don’t already have a list of email subscribers, or a steady stream of visitors to your blog that would make giving a survey worth your time, there is one more method you can use to figure out what your readers and customers want to see.

CHECK WITH THE READERS OF LARGE BLOGS.

Find the biggest blogs in your market that you can and make a list of them.  This is going to be a wealth of information for you to dig through.  After you’ve gathered a list of say 10, 15, or 20 of the bigger blogs in your niche, start pulling them up one, by one.

Most blogs will have a popular posts section, or widget, that you can use to sort all of the posts on the site by the posts with the highest comment count.  After finding the most popular posts on the blog, read the article and then start looking through the comments.  Pay attention to what the readers are saying and how it relates to the article.

This will help give you a better understanding of exactly who your readers and customers are, and the ability to help better serve up the types of blog topics that they really want to see.

We hope this helps! If you are just starting out blogging and don’t have your very own blog and domain but want to get started, here is a link to my article step by step walkthrough on setting up a blog: How To Setup Your Own Blog In 4 Easy Steps