Gift Giving Guide 2018 (for entrepreneurs)
A new year is coming (Eeek! Gotta close those books for income tax time!).
Moving from being a full-time corporate employee for 12-years to becoming an entrepreneur has been quite a learning experience! At times it’s amazing and fabulous. Other times it’s so. freaking. hard.
Either way, I wouldn’t change the opportunity to be able to work from home every. single. day. (On my patio or in a library, etc.).
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Nope, not wine (yet). ? Kombucha on my backyard patio under the deck. . . It’s amazing how diving into a health topic really inspires me to practice what I just learned. . . I just finished a DFY health article on leaky gut, and was kinda surprised at the amount of research on it. I mean, what we now know about the microbiome & gut-brain axis is still in its infancy, but we are discovering a tonne of stuff every day. . . Hence my Kombucha – ginger-flavoured fermented tea full of probiotics. Plus, almonds have fibre, which is great snack for my body & mind, my microbiota, and these probiotics. We know this for sure! . . Where are you working from today? Is it great weather for you too? . . If you want to be notified when this article is available for sale, hop over to my site & give me your email address so I can let you know. #linkinprofile
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New policy: Visit public libraries everywhere I go. What a treasure they are! . . Where’s your favourite public library and why? . . This week I discovered the @kitchenerlibrary central location has a cafe in it! And, the @orilliapubliclibrary is gorgeous (check out the pics!). . . #library #publiclibrary #books #quietspaces #freewifi #desks #comfychairs #bigwindows #airconditioning #workstations
If you’re like me, you are always hoping for some way to save time doing sh*t you don’t want to do or you can’t do well.
That’s what I’m sharing with you today – a bunch of products, programs, and software that have made my entrepreneurial life easier!
Head’s up: I’ve added affiliate AND non-affiliate links. I’m sharing these products and programs because I honestly use and love every single one. I’m not disingenuously doing it for the commission so feel free to choose the ones marked “non-affiliate” if you want, and simply use these products and programs to make 2019 easier for your business!
Another fun fact: I’m an affiliate for several other entrepreneurial products and programs that I don’t love as much, and I haven’t included them here. What you see here are things I personally use and love. #SorryNotSorry
Oh, at the very bottom I’ve embedded one of my favourite Christmas songs. The meaning of the lyrics always makes me think about what the holidays are about, and how they can make people feel (and I freaking love things that make me think!). I hope you like it! 🙂
BTW, if you’re looking for gift ideas for your health-conscious and “sciency” friends, family, colleagues, and freelancers, check out my 2018 Gift Giving Guide.
1 – For the online biz/blog in Toronto
If you have a website, you have some photos of you on it. Professional photos are a great way to make sure you have quality images that reflect your brand.
If you’re in the Toronto area and are considering updating your online photos (or have any other need for a portrait photographer… weddings, etc.) feel free to check out my sister. You can let her know that I recommended her to you. 🙂
Sonia Rakchaev Photography
- S. Rakchaev Photography (non-affiliate link)
2 – For all online entrepreneurs
“The money’s in the list” is quoted all. the. time when it comes to running an online business. Your email list, the people who have given you their email address and allow you to email them, are one of the most important assets of your business.
If you have an email autoresponder you love, that’s great! If you’re looking to change to one, I love ConvertKit!
I’ve been with them for over a year, and I don’t regret it one single bit! The software is easy-to-use, has tons of features, and is very reasonably priced.
3 – For all bloggers
Are you looking to increase the traffic to your website in 2019?
Other than paid advertising, there are two main ways to make this happen:
- SEO-optimize your amazing content and get on that first page of Google (my personal favourite way), or
- Strategically share your blog posts on social media often (which everyone should do – even if you’re hitting SEO hard).
Let’s think about social media shares for a second…
- Have you ever seen a great social media post from someone you follow, clicked through, and found it was published months or even years ago? Ya – me too!
- Have you ever noticed something a few times before clicking on it? Maybe you didn’t have enough time, or you weren’t that interested at that time, but it’s resonating now? Ya – me too!
- Did you know that social media shares of your blog posts drive traffic to your website in more ways than one? Yes, when you share your latest and greatest post right after you publish it, it can be seen by a small fraction of your social media followers. And that may get some engagement and shares, so sharing more often increases the number of people who see your post. In addition to that, your social media shares are one signal that Google (loosely) uses to rank your blog posts!
Let me ask you: “What happens to your blog posts after you’ve shared them with your newsletter list and on social media?”
Does it start collecting dust after a day or two?
I hope not!
If you keep sharing your great content, then more people will see it. And even if some of those who saw it see it again then they will get a second (or third) chance to click through and engage with it.
By scheduling several social media shares for each and every blog post you publish, you can increase the chances that someone will benefit from your great content.
Because I’m not a social media guru, and honestly, don’t care much for certain platforms, I spend most of my “blog promotion time” making amazing Google-friendly posts. BUT, I do spend the minimum possible time scheduling multiple social media shares for my Facebook and Twitter followers.
How do I schedule nine unique social media posts for FB & Tw throughout a year for each blog post in under 20 minutes???
My (not so) secret weapon is Missinglettr.
Here’s a quick video of me scheduling this very blog post (yes, I published this post first and embedded the video soon afterwards):
I’m not sh*tting you! You’ll see in the video dozens of my blog posts that have been scheduled through Missinglettr for over a year! I personally use this every week. (Except I’ve had SUCH a busy November that I missed a few blog posts – Oops!) #EntrepreneurLife
You can grab a free trial at those links if you want to check it out for yourself.
P.S. Pinterest is coming to Missinglettr soon! #HappyDance
4 – Up your social media game with this
Do you have a social media scheduler that recycles posts on autopilot without a steep monthly fee?
Enter: Social Bee!
You can create categories of posts and it will automatically schedule and recycle them (and yes, it avoids the Twitter penalties for recycling!).
And… Pinterest is coming!!!
Since I schedule social shares of my blog posts via Missinglettr (which is one arm of my social media strategy), I use Social Bee to schedule promotional posts, #FollowFriday tweets, and other non-blog related social media posts.
…Come to think of it – if you had to choose between Missinglettr and Social Bee consider their main benefits:
- Missinglettr helps to draft your social media posts by importing text and images from your blog post and ensures social media posts to promote your blog post will go out for an entire year, while
- Social Bee doesn’t help draft posts, but can be used for scheduling social shares for more than just blog posts. They even have a Chrome extension to help you schedule social shares of web pages you come across while you’re online! Sweet!
I have every intention to continue using both Missinglettr and Social Bee because they both contribute to my social media strategy.
5 – Get unstuck with tricky convos (this has been a freaking lifesaver!)
I don’t know about you, but sometimes I don’t know the best way to approach entrepreneurial situations. I’ve never been an awesome sales person, I kinda hate “overcoming objections”, and I really hate having difficult conversations.
UnF*ckwithable Words has been a saviour for me! Ash is a brilliant copywriter and this product has helped me get through “f*ckwithable” conversations without saying “f*ck”!
I used to spend SO. MUCH. TIME. writing, re-writing, stressing, sleeping on it, etc. when I had to send sales/uncomfortable emails to potential clients, paying clients, customers, etc.
If you waste your time and energy worrying about what to say, you might just love this as much as I do!
6 – For freelancers who want to “up their game” for 2019
I’ve been a freelance health writer for almost three years now. I just invested in this course a few months ago and it’s something else! It comes with a strategy for upping your freelance biz, scripts for dealing with some tricky client situations (yep, same Ash as UnF*ckwithable Words), and templates for oh-so-professional proposals and contracts. Don’t let the “UnF*ckwithable” name let you think this is anything but a solid program to get your freelance ass in gear and business off the ground!
7 – For freelancers who need a VA (it’s not just me, right?)
Another great product for freelancers!
I just signed up for Plutio and holy shit, I’m impressed! I haven’t dived into it yet, but I watched the live demo this week and it has so many features:
- Create a proposal template to send to potential clients (this looks amazing!). You can customize it and even embed a video into it! Plus it allows your potential clients to choose which services they want right from your template. AND it can be e-signed too!
- Once they e-sign the proposal you can automatically include an e-signable contract AND invoice for the deposit.
- Then, you can program it to automatically create a project for you right in your dashboard, all ready to go.
- Plus, it gives you the ability to create and send custom invoices to clients, and link it to your domain so it’s actually coming from your custom email address (not yourname.plutio.com)! Of course, those invoices can also be linked directly to your e-bank account (e.g. PayPal, Stripe, etc.).
- It has a timer to track your time, or you can log your time and add it separately. Of course, you can then send an invoice for your billable time (or just track non-billable time).
If you’re interested, take three minutes to check out how you can customize a proposal, contract, invoice, and project template to create a seamless and professional way to onboard new clients:
I’m super-excited to set up a few different ones for the different freelance and consulting services I offer: ghostwriting, editing, keyword research, etc.
8 – For the seriously nerdy health enthusiast (do you know anyone like me???)
If I didn’t already have it, I would still want the amazing supplement information that Examine has! (affiliate link)
There are stack guides, their Supplement-Goals Reference (which, as a nutritionist, I refer to a lot), as well as my annual subscription to their monthly Research Digest.
The people at Examine are the bomb when it comes to supplement science. I never make a recommendation without checking their info first!
9 – Want less stress and more strategy with your 2019 online wellness content? (Shameless plugs for my stuff)
I have small, medium, and large support for your wellness blog.
2019 is just around the corner… do you want to begin it with a “bang?” Are you ready to plan and execute a content strategy so your blog/vlog/podcast can deliver a bigger and better audience, email list, and sales?
If you are ready to use your content to grow your business, these are for you!
Small support: Health- and Food-Awareness Calendar
When you’re planning your blog/vlog/podcast content, refer to the latest version of this calendar and see if there are awareness dates in your niche, or that inspire you to create content on that topic.
- Help people with mood issues? Prepare something for International Day of Happiness and/or World Laughter Day.
- Hate diets? Get behind No Diet Day.
- Love hummus? Create an epic recipe to share on International Hummus Day.
- Love the doctor who championed handwashing? Promote non-antibacterial soap for National Handwashing Awareness Week (like me).
What is a health awareness calendar?
It’s just that: A calendar listing health awareness months, weeks, and days. For this one, I also threw in a bunch of food dates, and even some environmental awareness days too.
Having a calendar of health and food dates relating to your niche is one thing that can help you make a solid content strategy for your wellness blog.
More on the Health Awareness Calendar here, or grab it at the red button below.
Small support: “Done for you” science-based health articles for your blog
- Stop stressing about researching and writing health articles.
- Have professionally-written articles (without paying big bucks).
- Spend more time coaching, marketing, and building relationships.
Download one (or more) articles and publish them on your website!
Don’t need an article? Use the well-researched information to create a vlog post or podcast episode or well-referenced infographic.
Even if you’re writing your own content most of the time, these individual articles can fill in the gaps when you need to take a break or fall behind schedule.
Feel free to change the headline, or tweak them however you see fit to match your voice and your audience.
Click here to see the list of “done for you” scientifically-referenced, professionally written health articles for your blog.
Medium support: VIP Health Blog Optimization Plan
The VIP Health Blog Optimization Plan includes a review of your blog and ways to make it even more awesome. If you’re not getting the traffic, clicks, or shares that you want, I can help. I will run your website through my fancy SEO software and look at your last few posts to give you a strategic plan to get maximum results from your blog content. Want practical personalized recommendations on how to create more brand awareness, engagement, subscribers, and sales with content?
Check out the VIP Health Blog Optimization Plan here.
Medium support: Keyword Research
There are people literally searching for what you have to offer. They’re plugging keywords into Google and looking for answers to their health and wellness questions and how to reach their health goals.
- Do you know how many people are searching for what you have?
- Do you know exactly what words they’re using?
- Do you know how easy it would be to get on that coveted first page of Google?
I can help!
Let me find the right keywords to up your Google ranking and organic warm traffic for the most highly searched (and least competitive) terms in your niche.
I have a limited time offer to do custom keyword research for you!
This new service is not even on my website yet!
Contact me before to book your spot.
Large support: Content Calendar Coaching
We can work together 1:1 to develop (or refine) your credibility-boosting biz-building content strategy and editorial calendar. You too can use your blog, vlog, or podcast to help you stand out and show your expertise as a credible practitioner.
I will personally help you develop your content strategy and plan 3 months of your editorial calendar. Now’s your chance to dive in to make 2019 your best year yet!
Click here to see if my Content Calendar Coaching is right for you.
And for the grand finale of this Healthy Holiday Gift Giving Guide…
Watch one of my favourite Christmas songs:
Green Christmas by the Barenaked Ladies.
Not only is this band from my hometown of Toronto, but the words are really meaningful. The “green” they’re talking about is what I call “comparisonitis,” that envy that can pop up when you see “perfect parcels tied with perfect bows…”