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#1389991 by ken-admin
Thu Jan 11, 2018 1:17 am
Hi to all,

I hope you had a wonderful holiday and are now rounding back into the ___________ of growing your business. Why leave a blank in the previous sentence?

I'll tell you in a sec.

This time of year (right AFTER the holidays) is THE time of the year to take stock and reassess. What went well, what didn't? And given that, what priorities are you setting for the upcoming year?

Let's start with the blank above. What word would you use to fill-in-the-blank? What's your free-association, first-instinct thought?

Don't overthink it. But answer it truthfully (to yourself, at least) before continuing. No need to post a reply if it feels too personal, but do come up with an answer.

Then continue... :-)


We all KNOW that not only is success possible with SBI!, it's more probable than anywhere else. In fact, studies this year puts the number at 10-30X more probable. Given that...

If your word is "joy" or "passion" or "blast," I don't see how you can fail (assuming you follow the Action Guide). When work is play, you cease to work, your creativity soars and your target audience senses it as they connect.

If things are going well, congratulations! On the other hand...

CAVEAT: If you feel this way and if you have, say 200+ pages but hardly any traffic or profits, something is being done wrong - and it's probably something important. From niche selection, to following-bad-SEO suggestions, to not optimizing for mobile, to monetization choices, there are some "big picture" decisions that are critical to get right.

SUGGESTION: Post to the forums and ask for a hard look and tough opinions...


If that doesn't illuminate sufficiently, book an hour or two with an SBI! Professional.

This is important - you need to know if the reasons are reversible or if you can pivot. Or do you have a major mistake? Sometimes, it's better to learn from an error and start over - many successful SBIers do it on their 2nd or 3rd try.

The key is knowing WHEN and WHETHER!


Another "fill-in-the-blank" possibility...

If your first choice free-association was "discipline" or "hard work," it may be time for a re-assess. If you love what you're doing, it shouldn't FEEL that way, even if you are working mighty hard.

If you've been doing this for a long time, for example, what are you doing to keep it (and your mind) fresh? New directions? New monetization models? Starting an active social channel? Adding a YouTube channel?

The loss of excitement is an interesting phenomenon that happens to many SOLOpreneurs...

Many interviews with successful solopreneurs touch on the "hard work" topic. Assuming an "interview" is not some hypey story just to sell another MMO product, successful solo's often get around to how hard they work...

Whether they're doing eBay or YouTube or SBI!, folks often talk about sitting down to work at 8AM and suddenly... it's 8PM!! Those still with jobs start at 7PM after work, looking up next to see that it's 2AM. In short...

Anyone who tells you that success comes quick and easy is simply not on the up-and-up.

So yes, it's hard work. But it should not feel painful, not if you're loving it and keeping it fresh. But if you FEEL that it's long, if you're upset about losing "TV time" or other sacrifices, find the reason for the loss of passion...

You may have been doing it for too long. Or you may have had a bad year in terms of income. Whatever it may be, what can you do about it? First, though, do appreciate the accomplishment...

It's not easy to build a high-traffic domain with a recognized brand in a niche. Income may have declined, but if your traffic is still in the thousands per day, realize that few are anywhere near you. Be proud of that...

And THEN ask yourself how to leverage off that success, either getting the traffic back AND/OR implementing higher-paying monetization...

Doing something new that extends your biz while leveraging off success can rejuvenate both you AND the business.

Add a part-timer. You'll know that's necessary when you not only talk to yourself...

You answer! ;-)

Sometimes, some SBIers work way too hard, trying to "do it all." They may have added new ways to monetize (great!), but haven't added an employee to soak up the extra hours that will take.

BOTTOM LINE: Change it up. Solopreneurs can, ironically, get MORE stuck in a rut than at any "j-o-b!" A good boss is constantly pushing you forward, promoting you, varying the challenges...

Well, YOU are your own boss. How good are you to yourself? :-)


Continuing in the same vein...

If things are going well (nice income, no major headaches) and you're feeling great, don't get tooooo comfortable. Even if you'd love to just keep doing what you're doing without any changes, know that there are others working right now to grow into your niche. Remember...

If you're not getting better, you're getting worse. Don't get complacent - you'll only open an opportunity for some hot new solo to challenge you.

Ask yourself - what can YOU do to improve? You may be happy with your earnings and NOT want to grow income. That's fine, some folks simply don't want the headaches of managing customers and a staff.

But still ask yourself anyway - "how do I make my business better?" Don't just be tops in your niche.

Be WAY better!



BAM takes you a long way if you apply it well. I can't find a better, more reliable way for solopreneurs to build successful businesses. And, depending on your ambition level, income can grow to 6 or 7 figures, as we've seen in some of the success stories in the blog.

Meanwhile, the SBI! model looks strong for the foreseeable future. Reasons...

Many solo's today are lured to opportunities such as YouTube, creating vids as a standalone business. YouTubers have been getting a lot of publicity for the amount of money they make. The top few make millions of dollars per year!

Below that, we're talking about only a few thousand people out of ~50,000,000 channels who are uploading vids. Of course, there have been many more channels that sit inactive - THAT number is "countless" since it costs nothing to try.

In short, the odds of success are long. And if you're not a teen or in your twenties, there are fewer opportunities. For example...

Logan Paul is one of the few who makes millions. It looks like nonsense to adults, but he nails the content for HIS audience (teens).

As I posted earlier, his car and ours "kissed" a few months ago in Los Angeles...


Since then, I've become more interested in YouTube, looking for the common threads among the highly successful. More on that to come in another post.

However, if you missed the above post, it's worth reading. It complements this post.

SIDEBAR: If you've heard about some twerp who disrespected Japan's Suicide Forest, that was Logan Paul. Sheesh, what a disaster? While horrible, nope - all the publicity only pushed his subscriber base higher.

Even though there are strong commonalities among the widely and wildly varying YT channels, an abundance of "how to" info muddies the power of C T P M...

It's still the same model for YouTube, but it's much harder to succeed. And that makes sense - it has always been harder to entertain than to inform - and most vids entertain, in one way or another.

When I scan through a list of the 5,000 most successful accounts, randomly sampling, the hardest factor is the skill needed to pull off a channel that has an audience that will respond.

You basically need to be born with "it." Talent can be honed, of course. But without innate skill, it really doesn't matter if you know the ins and outs of YT. In other words...

I'm not sure I could succeed by creating a YT channel. I doubt very much that it can be taught in a reproducible manner. It simply feels way too tough to do, as a "self-contained" business....

However, it MAY make an excellent adjunct to yours. So we'll be covering this and how to use it to create strong supplements to your website-based business.


I got a little off-track there, but the bottom line is that building a theme-based, evergreen content site is still the most do-able business strategy for solo's...

1) most folks drift into blogging as "default," but that's a tougher road to win. Others are being diverted into YouTube and social media. Some set up storefronts on Amazon, etsy, etc. - it's risky to depend upon a 3rd party platform though (the eBay fee is now up to 13%, for example).

2) As a result of these trends, though, we see a leveling off of the number of sites. In fact, the number has dropped slightly since 2012, to 172,000,000...

https://news.netcraft.com/archives/cate ... er-survey/
(see graph labelled, "Total number of websites (logarithmic scale)")

And that suits us just swell!

Folks still search for info, whether it's on desktop, tablet or mobile. They always will. And while search is a smaller % of what folks do when online (folks are on many more hours per day), the absolute number of searches is stable.

Combine that with one strong active social channel and there's no (good) reason why the determined BAM-filled solopreneur can't succeed.

3) Income can be scaled according to your level of ambition. And it's income that YOU control. So you can still USE eBay and Amazon (as adjuncts) without depending upon them. You can stay passive or switch to more active, higher-paying models.

🌞 🌞 🌞 Sunny skies with few dislocations 🌞 🌞 🌞 ...

THAT is the forecast for 2018 and beyond.


I'd love to hear your thoughts on this, and what your answer is to the original fill-in-the-blank up top...

What word would you use to fill in the blank above ("the ___________ of growing your business")? And why?

Whether you submit it or not, realize that the answer provides insights into how you feel about your business.

Given that, what are your goals and what priorities are you setting to reach them? Make notes, write your answers down (even if you don't post them here), and then "just do it" accordingly! :-)

Wishing you all the best for 2018,

P.S. There were a few posts from SBIers, worrying about me since it's been a while since I posted. Not to worry...

The last half of 2017 was probably the worst of my life - health, hurricanes, fake reviews by WA, etc. Even when I thought it couldn't get worse and I was starting to turn the corner, I got shingles!

And then, just to top the year off (as I was again starting to feel better), my computer's logic board died. Man!!!


"Better it than me, I guess." Right? 🙄

THAT is about the best I can say for the 2nd half of 2017. ;-)


I've never really made health a priority, but this year I must. I still need a diagnosis - all the "killer diseases" have been ruled out after a ton of tests. But the docs haven't figured out what disease explains my symptoms, physical findings and lab test results.

I do need to reduce computer-hours. Otherwise my hands and wrists flare up, as well as other joints depending on my position.

Aside from that, it's time for some exercise and a better diet. The diet will be easy - Yuki is already taking over that. Exercise will be tricky since my joints seem to flare up in pain. So I guess we'll start slowly and see if I can get past that.

Anyway, those are the typical boring New Year's Resolutions. I'll leave that there....

This PS is just to let you know that I ain't dying! I'm still here with a terrific team. I'll be working at high level with everyone to keep pushing SBI! further ahead, the best in solo-success! :-)

P.P.S. As we continue to look at the big picture for 2018 and beyond, my next post will examine the future of search traffic and what you need to do and review in order to be well-placed for the next 10 years!
#1390003 by Claude from hamradiosecrets.com
Thu Jan 11, 2018 5:27 am
Paul from Somewhere, out there... wrote:it's time for some exercise and a better diet

Wow! That ... well Gosh! That was well worth the worrisome wait!

Let me share my recipe with you. I'm +/- 10 years older than you. I just turned 72 years young a few days ago! :D

I walk one hour a day. Temperature has been wayyyy below zero for the past fortnight or so. Like in the -20C to -30C range - and that's without the wind chill factored in!

When I'm not walking, it's because I'm shoveling snow - remember? that white fluffy stuff that adorns our beautiful landscape here in Lanaudière, Québec!

So, yes. Exercise. Your brain - as does mine - needs it's daily dose of oxygen. It's incredible the amount of really productive work I can do when I get back from those outdoor activities.

According to what you have been hinting at more than once over the past few months ... Yuki seems to have your back. You lucky so-n-so. My kids are not even near there, and probably never will be. They are respectively 34 and 42 years old.

My success with SBI! is still - and probably shall forever remain - alien to them. I live and soar in another dimension. :shock:

ken-admin wrote:had a wonderful holiday and are now rounding back into the ___________ of growing your business.

... into the highly rewarding (in every sense of the word you can imagine) process of growing my very own small online business ... my way!

I'm very happy to see you back in here, mon ami.

#1390005 by Douglas from Planet Earth
Thu Jan 11, 2018 6:52 am
All the best in 2018 Ken. The old saying; "If you haven't got your health, you have nothing" still holds true today. Take care of yourself.

I have been blessed with great genes so pushing my way into middle age at 71 :wink: , I'm in excellent health. I have one big fear so I have been seeing a psychologist. The fear? The fear of retirement!

Actually, I'm not really seeing a psychologist, she is seeing me. :lol: I just talk and sort things out myself. I like having the audience present as it makes me feel more sane.

Today I made a big step and cut my hours at my day job. I figure if I take it one step at a time, I can slowly work my way to retirement. It's like going up a set of stairs. One step at time and before you know it, you are at the top!

What am I doing with my one and only website? I really don't know yet. I'm still working at it albeit slowly. I find that I spend more time trying to put out fires and keep up with all the changes that seem to grow exponentially on a daily basis. Remember when technology was said to be doubling every 10 years? :lol::lol::lol::lol: If only.


Doug C.
#1390007 by Nancy from 90% Persistence-10% Inspiration
Thu Jan 11, 2018 7:30 am

Ken, so good to see you back in long form here in the forums.

2017 was the year of the 'wake up call' for many of us. I know that's been true for you as well. Listen to your body. Take joy in family and friends. You're already living with purpose.

My wake up calls were health scares in myself and my husband. I realize now that I spent much of 2017 asking myself, "How Are You Doing?" And not being very happy with the answers. But I did take the time to figure out "What To Do About It." It was a rather long and painful period of reassessment, learning and planning.

But the result of all that naval gazing is that this January I've not been reviewing and contemplating, I've been moving forward. Working. So it was no surprise to me when I filled in your blank word this way:

...now rounding back into the Business of growing your business.
#1390017 by Christine from Elliottville
Thu Jan 11, 2018 10:57 am
Happy New Year Ken to you and your family. I hope your problems are quickly diagnosed and treated.

I spent a lot of 2017 caring for a seriously ill family member whilst being able to support my children with my sites. That's all thanks to SBI and I am grateful to you on a daily basis.
#1390019 by Cath from Italy
Thu Jan 11, 2018 11:38 am
Happy New Year, Ken (when does it get too late to say that I wonder?! :roll: ) and thank you for the thought-provoking post.

My word, like Nancy's, was "business". And in the past that word would have felt like a weight on my whole being, because my experience of my "day job" was that it brought me money, but no joy.

SBI! has meant a total re-defining of that word for me. My "business" is something to be celebrated and enjoyed. Every time I post an article I know will help someone, every time I get an email thanking me for some small thing, every time I learn some new piece of information I can share with my audience, I feel nothing but joy.

So you're right, that word "business" says a lot. It's indicative of a total mindset change for me. Yes, the money is nice, but it's not the be-all-and-end-all.

Joy, health and happiness are what you've helped me find. And I wish the same for you and your family, now and for many years to come.


PS Like Paul, I was glad to see that YT have stopped Logan Paul's income, at least for now. His subscriber base may be higher but values, principles and common decency are more important than any numbers - and making cash from the desperate act of a lonely soul who was once someone's loved family member is an appalling way to conduct a business.
#1390069 by Jacki from Macleod
Thu Jan 11, 2018 7:27 pm
This will hopefully be the year that I regain my ability to type. After a horrible backlash from a Vitamin B complex shot in late October I've been numb and miserable (and that doesn't take into consideration the weather!). Your health is everything, if you don't have good health, you have nothing.

Looking forward to spring, and probably moving from out mountain paradise, because of the health concerns for both me and hubby - since I've become disabled, all the snow shoveling and firewood activities have fallen to him, and he's wearing out now too.
#1390182 by Olabode from nigeriawebsuccess.com
Sat Jan 13, 2018 2:18 pm
Hi Ken,
I wish you good health, long life, and strength to continue teaching and mentoring us. I will ever be grateful to you. Your SBI tool turns my life around positively, from hopelessness to hopefulness, serving others with my passion and compensated financially. I Love what I'm doing daily in my business and things are getting the better everyday courtesy of you and your great team members.
#1390194 by Suzie from Southview
Sat Jan 13, 2018 5:37 pm
Hi Ken
I got into SBI because of you and your words so to see a forum post here and there from you always excites me :)

My word is for that gap is process.

I really want to expand my business this year and I don't feel as if it's quite there yet.
As you said - If things are going well (nice income, no major headaches) and you're feeling great, don't get tooooo comfortable. Even if you'd love to just keep doing what you're doing without any changes, know that there are others working right now to grow into your niche. Remember...

That was spot on (well almost, I do get an income but it's not going to set the world alight quite yet!). Last year I was a bit complacent and lo and behold another website sprung up offering (slightly different) options for walking holidays in this lovely part of the UK. That was actually quite a boost and probably what was needed to keep me on my toes. A real lesson in moving forward and not staying stagnant.

I'm also a great believer in taking time to think - the subconscious will work things out. About a year and a half ago I knew I wanted to add another book to my website. It's actually taken that length of time for the idea to formulate. I knew it would come to me eventually, patience paid off. So 2018 will see me writing another book which I'm really excited about as well as improving my visitor statistics and a few other ideas. I like the idea of varying what one has done over the year to add a bit of excitement.

So for me, 2018 is going to be a process of expanding my business.

Great post as always and thanks Ken for your wise words of wisdom.
#1390196 by Franco from Argentina
Sat Jan 13, 2018 5:52 pm

Hi Ken,

I hope you had a wonderful holiday too.

And I'm rounding back into the desire of growing my business.

I'm focusing all my attention on creating value and trying to not worry so much about money. I loved when you said money is the result and not the motivator. It's a very powerful mindset! It gave much more clarity. So, thanks for that. :wink:

It's difficult, not worrying about the money though. I'm unemployed and sometimes I feel a bit needy and desperate. My family is supporting me though. I'm young (21) and I can still rely on them (although I don't want to). This is one of the big things I want my business generates for me - freedom.

Going back to the job topic... Ironically, almost any job out there excites me. I sometimes feel that growing a business is the only chance I had to find my place and do what I love.

I have a peculiarity. I'm a multipotentialite person.

Multipotentialite: “An educational and psychological term referring to a pattern found among intellectually gifted individuals. [Multipotentialites] generally have diverse interests across numerous domains and may be capable of success in many endeavors or professions, they are confronted with unique decisions as a result of these choices.”

This characteristic I have is really killing my progress. Because here in SBI! we try to find a niche and sticking to it. And I just find that very boring. Just thinking about that kills my motivation.

That's one of the reasons why I completely ignored the AG and went straight to Day 6 to create a blog. Because I could write just about anything.

I didn't want to listen to other possibilities. I knew what I wanted to do and did it.

But after a couple of months doing fine with that site, I voice started to creep in.

"What if you don't succeed? What if you are wrong and nobody wants to read your stupid blog posts? You had all these amazing resources (BI!, AG, etc) and you just completely ignored it. You are going to pay the consequences for doing that."

The voice became so strong that I stopped working on my blog.

I realized that voice was right.

It didn't give me the best advice per se, but in some way, it was right.

So I'm starting all over again. From scratch.

I'm going to start participating a lot in the forums. I don't know why but last year I thought that the SBI! forums were unnecessary. I thought the AG was all I needed.

I'm embarrassed about how wrong I was.


I would like to receive feedback about this. Surely I'm going to post in the Finding Your Niche & Setting Up Site Blueprint thread. Because I'm having lots of trouble finding a good balance between finding a niche/topic and my need to have multiple projects.

You are going to hear from me soon. :D

- Franco

PS: If you are interested Ken, I have a couple of awesome YT channels that I want you to check out:

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC6107g ... 2-emgoDnAA

(Destin focuses on delivering value and he had amazing results doing that)

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCEOXxz ... 0THehuIIeg

(this fellow makes super high-quality videos since early times of YT and has a relatively small number of subscribers. They are on the rise though)

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCuPgdq ... zeqmTelnFg

(And this one has very few videos but their quality are from another planet, and his fanbase/subscribers exploded because of that)

I think is worth studying these 3 examples. I have more if you like them. :)
#1390220 by Brenda from My Kitchen
Sun Jan 14, 2018 12:22 am
Gosh, Ken. I've been grinding with spirits not high enough for anything to register. For a long time.

But today, I bought a site that another SBIer couldn't take care of anymore. When I read their listing for a site for sale, it totally resonated. I had a few of my own ideas, with new sites I could start, but this totally resonated. So I bought the site. I shall have to bring it back from its P and P issues, but all of a sudden, I have BAM! Something I can do, something I know about, something that makes sense. So that's a bit new, I think, for what SBIers are used to.

I just wanted to share that as another possible way to get going. Take someone else's dying BAM and turn into your own BAM. We'll see... but so far, I'm working nonstop and don't even care about the hours spent. I have something I love and can do something with. Let's see if I can bring it back, no guarantees, but feels good to try.

Glad to hear you're doing well. I'm glad to be back.

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