The ONE Offer You Can’t Refuse This Year

asking for helpThey were sitting in front of me, ready to help me.

Offering.

I barely knew them, but there they were last night — staring at me over delicate slices of gluten- and dairy-free chocolate cake that made me contemplate snorting the cake instead of eating it. Surely, something this delicious couldn’t be legal and I should probably look for it to disappear along with a woman’s right to make her own healthcare decisions should Romney become our next President. But I digress.

Do you know what it feels like to have people in your life who are ready and willing to help?

Wait — shit. That’s the wrong question.

Do you know how to and the value in asking for help?

It’s not some pansy-ass move that says you’re not smart enough, good enough, wrong, or weak. It’s actually pretty fucking sexy. It’s learning to being interdependent (not its creepy cousin, Co-dependent, who sits in the corner at family reunions and masturbates in the potato salad). It’s finding the inherent strength in declaring, “Hey – I have no fucking idea what’s next or how to do this. Would you be willing to help me?”

And the damnedest thing happens: when you ask (and you’re humble), the universe brings people along willing to help.

So that’s what’s happening here today.

Last week, I gave away a copy of Jason Womack’s book and we chatted briefly about how to WOW the winner. Go above and beyond her expectations. So, Deb Lamb — yeah, you’ve got her to thank for this. Because Jason recorded the video below (and if you’re reading this in your email, CLICK HERE TO VIEW ONLINE) with an offer you can’t refuse.

And all you have to do in order to take advantage of it is be honest. And ask for help. Oh — and ya gotta do it by Friday, November 2. Mkay? Have a watch:

So there it is: Jason and I are here to help you with what needs helping with in your business. All you have to do is ask.

Reply in the comments on this blog and tell us — as specifically as you can — WHAT you need help with and why by this Friday, November 2, and Jason and I will bang heads together in order to find you the help you need.

The one caveat: you cannot ask for help for another person. The ask must be for yourself.

So there you go — it’s the one offer this year you can’t afford to refuse. There are no strings attached and everyone who asks will receive a response from Jason, myself, or both. And if you ask, you really do need a valid Disqus profile, as without one, it’s going to be pretty much impossible for us to get ahold of you with how we can help. So do us a solid – login in a way where we can reach you instead of throwing an ask up into the void where our offers to assist echo like the void that is Ann Coulter’s soul.

Oh — and that wasn’t disrespectful or name-calling. It’s just a simile.

Have at it…and let us know how we can help. The floor is yours.

 

194 comments
Dan Waldschmidt
Dan Waldschmidt

Let me simplify: If you want a bigger audience (as you asked) then you need to absorb what you read on Copyblogger, Problogger, and HubSpot. If you want something else, let's talk about that... The truth is that to one here can help you build your audience. And there is nothing **new** that you can can do to build your audience It's the same formula that has worked for me or Erika or Jason: 1. Find people in pain and help them OR 2. Provide inspiration to those looking for answers OR 3. Deliver "inside information" about an information niche OR 4. All of the above... Dan p.s. I take everything I do personally. Or I don't do it. If I spend my time helping someone that's personal to me.

SL Clark
SL Clark

I've been eyeballs deep in a major kitchen remodel, thinking, how to ask. Our business launches April 2013, high end luxury goods we create - like custom heirloom bedspreads, hand made & expensive; Biltmore, Hearts Castle, generational. The question(s) Google type soft launch or attempt to be everywhere our customers are at all at once? If all at once is best, does anyone have any thoughts when it comes to efficient ways to make this happen. I don't want "all at once" to take a year or more if that's the direction we take. All thoughts will be appreciated, -Steve Clark

Ashley Festa
Ashley Festa

Thanks to both of you for doing this. Good karma is headed your way. I need help explaining my value to potential clients. The reason I can't do that is because I have no idea how to go about determining my "ideal" client or determining my USP. I've read all sorts of things trying to help people figure that out (picture what they look like, how old they are, what they like for breakfast, etc.) but that has gotten me nowhere. I'm a writer without a niche, so what's my USP? Just that I'm reliable? That won't get me very far until I've already been hired and do the work. Confidence is also an issue. I've been writing for a long time, so I know I'm good at that. But I've been a business owner only a few years, so selling myself to clients is still scary. I have several regular clients and they're all very happy with my work. In fact, I've had only one client that was unhappy with my work (and I've since figured out that he's the exact opposite of whoever my my "ideal" client is!) but he's still the one that sticks in my mind, rather than the many happy, repeat clients. I need some blunt, unpopular advice. Lay it on me! And thanks!

Mikele Burcaicea Ibrahim
Mikele Burcaicea Ibrahim

First, thank you so much for doing this. I run a pediatric dental office in a small community in Denver. The neighborhood is upper-middle class with many families where both parents have graduate degrees. Our practice is state-of-the-art and we have a great reputation, but we have had a hard time marketing to the local families. The parents in our neighborhood are very busy and many of them prefer taking their children to the family dentists in the area to consolidate appointments. We have great relationships with many of these dentists, who often refer to us when their pediatric patients need treatment. Many parents are surprised when they realize how much "better" our office is for their children and end up switching their children to our office (the referring dentists do not mind this). We would like to show neighborhood parents the value of bringing their kids to us without stepping on any toes or offending the other dentists in the area. We have tried Facebook with little success, offering everything from Sonicare toothbrush contests to free movie tickets just to "like" our page. Not many takers on the giveaways. In fact, we once had a mom read our sign at the front desk about a Sonicare giveaway contest for "liking" our page. She did not "like" us on Facebook, but instead *bought* two Sonicares! We do see traffic spikes when we do charity events or recently with a Halloween candy buyback program but we've found that the busy parents in our neighborhood are not motivated by Facebook. We have considered changing our giveaways to brands that our neighborhood loves like Boden and Nordstrom, but a $25 gift card to one of these businesses won't go very far. Direct mailers worked in year one, but after a few rounds we saw diminishing returns (we're in year four now). How can we market ourselves as the office parents "must" take their children to, without biting the hands that feed us? Thanks so much!

Dona
Dona

I have been working over the part few years too build my business. However I am really struggling with how to target my customers as an artist. I am having a difficult time targeting the best venues booth physical and online. Basically I need someone to help me set the compass in the right direction and then kick make in the butt.

Sam R
Sam R

I have wanted to post a comment on this since the moment I saw the generous offer you made. Thank you for this. I have been trying to get my thoughts together on exactly what and how to ask. In the end though that time has not helped. I can tell you that I love photography and want to form a business where I am able to travel to take photographs and where I am able to teach photography to others (perhaps those with illnesses of some sort). I just do not know where to even begin. I am working on a website but am not sure once it is up and running how I will be able to get people's attention. The other issue though is that I do not just want to take photographs for pleasure, and hopefully profit, rather I want to combine my interest in photography with a cause that is important to me. This cause is particular is education people about mental illness. I feel there is a very strong stigma attached to people who have been diagnosed and who are being treated for mental illness. People have serious misconceptions about the illness and those who live with it. This not only makes it difficult at times for people to seek the treatment they need but also makes recovery and maintenance difficult. I feel the main way I can help other people who deal with mental illness is to change the views the world has of us to better facilitate treatment and recovery. I want to find a way eventually to combine people’s stories with photographic imagery of some sort. I would prefer portraits, but I can see how that might make some subject uncomfortable. So, I guess my core issues is how to build a profitable business that will allow me to go in this direction with either a website or a book one day. I know this is a really broad question, but any advice or help you have would be great. Thank you again for this!

Dust Bunny Mafia
Dust Bunny Mafia

I would love to have more traffic on my comic strip, which started this year: Dust Bunny Mafia Comics, http://www.comics.dustbunnymafia.com also can be found on facebook.com/DustBunnyMafia. I am really trying to get more readers, no gimmicks, no selling stuff, just eyes on the page. Anything would help.

flashmemoirs
flashmemoirs

Wow, what a fab offer! Can't let that go by so here goes: I would like to take my cool little flash writing class on the road: http://flashmemoirs.com/workshops/. Any suggestions for how to best research venues and opportunities in the US, and particularly the West coast? Do I perhaps need speakers agent - and how to find them?? Thanks for any ideas you have!

Marie Angell
Marie Angell

I hate to ask for help (quit reading my mind!), but I will try. I'm working on an ebook, which I hope to use as the cornerstone of a website/blog/to the moon/whatever. Naturally, I have the scaredy cat wobblies since this will be the biggest thing I have ever done short of birthing children. BUT the more pressing issue is: I am deeply (truly madly) concerned my approach to the problem I'm trying to ease for my future readers is completely full of shit. I don't have a tribe to ask, because I wanted to build a tribe using my ebook. I can't build a tribe if I don't have a starting point (why does that tail keep chasing me?!?). Of course, my family/friends think my approach just fine, but what do they know? I need somebody who doesn't know me at all to tell me whether my angle is off base. Pretty please. With lots of sugar on it. Lots. (Or sugar substitute--totally up to you.) And thank you.

Aimee Meester
Aimee Meester

Thanks for the offer! I am helping a boot-strapped start up conquer the Denver technology consulting market and am running out of creative, low-cost marketing ideas to fill the pipeline. We have an extremely talented group of people doing amazing, innovative tech projects and want to get the word out. Any ideas on how to reach Denver mid-sized businesses would be GREATLY appreciated!

Nomad Cigar Company
Nomad Cigar Company

Ok, I have a "simple" question for the two of you. I have no problem with ideas and projects. Some of my Projects have been killer money making home runs. Others, like my latest venture, are simply the process of turning my hobbies into a business. I don't have a problem starting a project (no real "fear of failure" issues). But, my questions is... We all only have so much time. How do YOU decide which projects to pursue and which to simply cast away and not attempt?

Michelle Nickolaisen
Michelle Nickolaisen

Hi Erika! This is my first comment so I feel a lil weird asking for help in it...but I've been following you for a while now & love what you're doing. Anyways, I'm getting ready to make a big transition in my business, from a mostly hourly-based freelancer model to a more agency-style setup. I have digital products available and occasionally do one-off classes & workshops, but in my ongoing work with clients it's hourly & freelancer-style - they hire me as their project/business manager and I work within their existing team/setup. I want to change this for a few reasons - namely, I noticed so many of my clients either have kind of shitty VAs, or shitty systems/relationships with those VAs...so I want to set everything up so that it's seamless and essentially, the biz-owner meets with me and tells me what they want to get done (and we work on making sure they're on track for their longer term goals and that they're being accountable and doing THEIR side of things) and then shit just gets done without them having to do anything else. The other part of my motivation behind this is that I want working with me to be a really "high-end" experience with client surprises & bonuses, and I literally, mathematically cannot do that while working on an hourly basis. So I'm thinking a 3-tiered monthly retainer set up, with my team consisting of 2-3 VAs who all have their own specialities so that we can cover almost any need. My help-needed areas: 1. Any advice in general in switching from one business model to another with minimal fuckups? I know I need to check and double-check my numbers, because my first round of prices was based entirely off gut-instinct/numbers I was comfortable with & then when I did the math, it's like, oh shit, I'd need to have 20-30 clients or more to actually make a living off of those prices, and I'd still be working 'round the clock & making like $10/hr. No bueno. 2. Any advice in finding clients who really want that higher end experience & are willing to pay accordingly? I expect some of my existing clients will transfer over to the new business model (and I'm working on transition options for that), but I'm pretty nervous about this transition and worried that I'll wind up with nothing but tumbleweeds for the first few months after I switch over. Do you just focus on giving the BEST experience possible and let your raving clients work as your recruitment force, or...? I hope this wasn't TOO long and was specific enough to be doable! Thank you Erika and Jason for your generosity!!

wcdiva
wcdiva

My name is Heather Urick and I’m a bitch on wheels. I have spent the last 25 years of my life advocating, studying, and volunteering for people with disabilities. I am now “retired” and want to offer my personal experiences and knowledge, which are vast, to the public. My domain name is TheWheelChairDiva.com. How do I attract the people who need my help and have them find my website (after I publish it) so that I can get them out of their houses on the right track? Help!! Thank you for any advice you can give me.

Erika Napoletano
Erika Napoletano

In addition to what Dan's said, find a way to get your product into the hands of people who can love them and share them! People who have fantastic and plugged-in Facebook communities. Bloggers with audiences in the luxury goods sector. And be content, contrary to what your heart might desire, with the slow build. People love sharing great products, not hype. When hype fades (which is fast), great product will stay behind. Sounds like you have a great product. Those stick around for the long haul when you take the time to cultivate the right audience :)

Dan Waldschmidt
Dan Waldschmidt

I was just at the Biltmore Mansion yesterday. :-) Go deep and stay narrow. Be outrageously amazing at one thing (or two or three) rather than "ok" at fifty. Since you are competing for eyeballs and wallet share, you can fight a better battle if you only have to fight on a few different fronts. By being everywhere you are really nowhere. Dan

IrreverentSalesGirl
IrreverentSalesGirl

Get in touch with me IMMEDIATELY. Here's the blunt, unpopular advice you seek. You are NOT doing the work to get in front of your target prospects. You HAVE ideal prospects. Le's find them and get you in front of them. Email me at: salesgirl@irreverentsalesgirl.com and we will talk! Love your life UP!

Dan Waldschmidt
Dan Waldschmidt

Change how you're thinking about this. Who do you want to read what you write? Everyone? Business owners? Moms? Puppies? [thinking.......] Write to that person. And do it every day. Your confidence will bet stronger the more vulnerable you allow yourself to become. Think about what scares you and then write about that. Think about the secrets no one knows about you and use that write from your soul. If you are looking for practical ideas on how to do that, try using S.C.A.M.P.E.R. The mnemonic is as follows: S = Substitute C = Combine A = Adapt M = Magnify = Modify P = Put to other uses E = Eliminate R = Rearrange = Reverse Take any topic and add any of the S.C.A.M.P.E.R. "focuses" to the discussion. That will help you be more creative and push your writing to the next level. Dan p.s. BTW, you should stop beating yourself up. Your unhappy customer did a good enough job for the both of you. It's OK to strike-out. We all do it.

Erika Napoletano
Erika Napoletano

So -- ask yourself: What problem do we solve for parents? Kids hate going to the dentist. Parents hate running them around. So what is it that you do that's "so much better" once you finally get the parents in the door? Tell me what this is...and then I can tell you something else :) Oh -- and stop bribing people who have the means to fully pay for what you offer. You're better than a daily deals schtick. ;)

Dan Waldschmidt
Dan Waldschmidt

Who buys your art? Ask them why they bought it and who they think would like to meet you. That will start the conversation. Here are a few other ideas to get you noticed: 1. Ask your biggest buyer to host a dinner party where you can show off your artwork and introduce yourself to a bigger audience. 2. Volunteer to teach classes at a local community college or high school. 3. Create a booth at your local Farmer's Market and "do it live". Have an iPad available to capture names. I generally steer away from "what is" towards "what I want it to be". Where do you want your artwork to be seen and bought? Answer that question. And then figure out how to get yourself in that position. We're all here to help you as the pathway becomes more clear. Dan

IrreverentSalesGirl
IrreverentSalesGirl

Sam R - you are interested in two different things. 1) You want to earn a living traveling taking pictures and teaching photography. 2) You want to dispel stigmas about mental illness I want you to think about this from a business perspective (since you said you want a profit from this) There are a number of ways to do this, but the one I think combines your interests is: Find the mentally challenged people you want to promote...show them how to operate the camera... have THEM take the pictures from THEIR perspecive. Find a mental care provider that will sponsor your efforts (check out the AdCounci and others - people CARE about this issue) BE the expert on you message...you probably already are. APPROACH SPONSORS...be unafraid. You have a message worth delivering...especially if it is delivered by those afflicted. They are out there. They want the "raw" stories. Get them those stories and the future is unlimited! Love 'em UP!

Erika Napoletano
Erika Napoletano

Darlin' -- you need Togather.com. Make people tell you where it's worth your time to go :) Lemme know how that works out and if you need an intro to the founders. Mkay? Tell 'em Erika -- the girl with the Unpopular book -- sent ya when you ask for a beta invite :)

Stephen Denny
Stephen Denny

Marie - as a partner-in-the-Redhead's-thought-crime-syndicate, I'd be happy to give you a bit of advice on this, and it's a doozy (I'm biased, of course, but still). If you're not sure you've got your approach nailed down tightly - and lack a tribe to run it past - do two things in short order. First, understand that you do have a tribe. It may be small, but that's not important. Get opinions - particularly from those who are "loose connections" - not good, personal friends. Because they won't care about offending you. Second - and this matters a lot - speak about it. Develop your own keynote presentation on your topic. And find a way to deliver it to any audience that will sit still for 45 minutes. Do this as many times as quickly as you can over the next 90 days. You will find (WILL FIND) that having to look lots of people in the eye and say it all out loud will dramatically focus your approach - and you will discover, very quickly, what gaps you missed the first go-'round. This second piece is important, so get to it. In my opinion. Good luck! SD

Erika Napoletano
Erika Napoletano

Chicken/egg...chicken/egg. We all had to start somewhere. Determine first who will NEVER benefit from your eBook. Then write it for the people who will. Then let people that you already know who know those kind of people that you have a new eBook. And chances are, those people who knows those people will share the everlovin' shit our of your eBook :) Sound doable? So start writing that eBook.

Stephen Denny
Stephen Denny

Aimee: a few thoughts for you, if I may. I find that "tech consulting" isn't something bought casually while you're waiting to pay for your beer and chips, is it? You need to do two things - both matter a lot in my experience. Here goes: 1. Be an authority: find a way to get in front of them and speak. And EO or YPO chapter, or any other "filled room" will do. Offer up a case study (with permission) of one of your clients that they'd find helpful or whatever makes sense for them. Be the one standing on stage. As Mark Twain said, "An expert is a guy from another town." To which I'd add, "... and who also has a book deal and gives a few keynotes to groups." Amen. 2. Be an insider: you need someone running interference, introducing you to people who know people and who is already an insider. Could be a relationship you need to cultivate, so think 2 to 3 moves down the board. Could be that EO or YPO chapter learning chair (or just a member). Could be a lawyer/accountant who does a lot of their work. You pick. But pick. Good luck! SD

James Taylor
James Taylor

Aimee, One idea on how to get to the midsized folks would be to begin with hosting and event. Put on something which you know will show some how to knowledge and invite folks to get out and see what you are doing that differentiates. your company. Do it as a service to anyone with little or no cost (there is a school that believes that adding a cost will filter those who come for free ideas or food). Mid sized companies always have folks who are in charge of things like chamber of commerce expos and such. Go out and represent yourself as an authority and give some good advice, the bigs will come sniffing at some point, esp. if you get any media out of the event(s)...

Erika Napoletano
Erika Napoletano

My answer to this is simple: my gut. My gut tells me every day what has to be sone with my business...and dammit if it's never wrong. It's kind of an arrogant fuck, my gut, but if something seems hard, can't get traction, I'm floundering, or simply don't have the motivation to start it...it's out. Plain and simple.

Dan Waldschmidt
Dan Waldschmidt

I ask myself: "What Are You Scared To Do?".... And then I start doing that. BTW, the harder you work, the more time you have. Do it all. The only people complaining about time management and priorities are the people who are standing on the sideline complaining about the game you are playing. Dan p.s. And yes I do understand the basic laws of 7th Grade science class. I just think it's stupid to stop anything you don't want stop. And silly not to start anything you want to get started....

James Taylor
James Taylor

Michelle, One idea I had, was to throw a party! I'm assuming that you will be getting some kind of space to house your new business model. Invite current and prospective future clients to see your new world, and then hit them up with a short and casual pitch like "welcome to our new house, we will have to work hard to fill it up with success, please be a part of our success and help us as we take a big new step in the right direction!" Add, we buy lunches for business referrals as a sort of funny, sort of truthful ending...

Erika Napoletano
Erika Napoletano

On top of Dan's advice below, here's one tip I'll offer: get a landing page setup for your book where, in exchange for their email address, people can get a download of the book's first chapter. Then you can set up a drip email campaign to touch base with them later on. A free chapter lets people know you're happy to give a sneak peek of what they'll be getting when they spend the cash. Always a great goodwill gesture!

Dan Waldschmidt
Dan Waldschmidt

1. Speak from the soul 2. Share valuable insights 3. Love what you do 4. Be different 5. Do what's scary 6. Work harder than you should 7. Ask for help when you need it..... Rinse. Repeat. Chances are you'll be crushing it all too soon... Dan

James Taylor
James Taylor

Heather, as someone who works in the disabilities field, I say bravo, and hope you have all of the success you deserve. Look me up when you start really taking off, I'll send it to my circle!

SL Clark
SL Clark

Thanks Dan & Erika! I'm happy with the slow build (Google Soft Launch) approach. We've got several A-List inspirations Sonia wants to personally thank. I've also been compiling our list of sector bloggers. The bedspread seems easiest, because it will be one of most expensive in the world, hand crafted and custom designed to our customer's specific theme with visual examples like Opera, Wine, etc. The perfumes will be crafted for pleasure, not max ROI at wholesale like all celebrity du jour creations are today. The silks well, because we can and most women get immense pleasure from them. Cheers and THANK YOU!!!!

Erika Napoletano
Erika Napoletano

You're a writer without a niche? Bullshit. Every writer has a niche. And to add to what Dan's said, maybe you're trying too hard to niche yourself and not seeing it. Maybe you serve a wide range of industries with quirky copy that makes people laugh. Perhaps you're the direct response gal who can close an email marketing campaign with ka-ching! Look at the whole of what you do and ask: HOW do I make my customers FEEL when they work with me? That's your USP (a term I hate, BTWLOLOMG). Focus on WHY your customers hire you, then WHAT you deliver. The HOW? Hell, girl. You do it with words. :)

IrreverentSalesGirl
IrreverentSalesGirl

There are two approaches to your dilemma. The first is...those dentists that don't mind making the referral...call on them. Have lunch. Make YOU the trusted resource that, when their clients talk with them say "I LOVE THAT YOU CONNECTED ME WITH Mikele, THANK YOU!" Another fun approach could be to market a seminar - at your beautiful offices - talking about the process of good dental care for your young clients. Invite them in to see how you work...experience your facilities. Serve food! Direct marketing will be best for this. Pay for the list. Invest.

Mikele Burcaicea Ibrahim
Mikele Burcaicea Ibrahim

The surprising thing is that kids LOVE coming to our office. Parents comment on it all of the time. What we do differently is that we have a kid friendly office that is their size. We give kids goody bags, they get a token for our toy machine after each visit, we carefully analyze their insurance benefits so there are no billing surprises (which is huge these days, nobody does this), the dental work is very conservative we always do what is best for the child in every case. We have specially trained assistants that are amazing with kids. We also sponsor each school in the area and give prizes for their annual auctions, which I have wondered if this is helpful at all. I think that is about it. As far as the bribing....done. Thanks again!

Dona
Dona

Thanks for the reply. I do have a fairly good feel for who my customers are and who I want them to be. However I do not live near them way out here in the middle of nowhere Montana... Most of my bigger customers are out of state. I do shows. I teach 15-20 classes a year but my students are not my buyers in general. I do the local farmers market when I am not out of town doing an art show. I know I need to be doing shows in larger, higher income areas but not really sure how to target those without breaking the bank on travel and such until I find the ones that are profitable. My experience is that the ones my customers have told me about often are not a good match for me. Galleries and stores are much the same. I do very well in the higher end tourist areas here in Montana but translating that to other statespecially has been much more difficult. So I am searching for that one little element that turns the light bulb on for me so I can get around the potholes. All the best...

Sam R
Sam R

Thank you so much! I am looking into which groups I can work with and trying to come up with a plan to present them with. Once again, Thank You so much for the advice and encouragement. It really means a lot to me.

Dust Bunny Mafia
Dust Bunny Mafia

Isn't that part of business? Through more traffic I can increase the reach of the comics and thus grow the brand more (with a broader audience).

flashmemoirs
flashmemoirs

Too cool, thanks so much for pointing the way! I'll keep you posted.

Marie Angell
Marie Angell

Thank you, Redhead (if I may call you that) and Stephen--I appreciate your comments very much and have been mulling. Ms. Redhead, I'm trying to laser my focus with the hope of spillover. Frankly, when I first embarked on this journey, I was definitely taking too broad a swipe, but I'm now concerned that I've gone too narrow. Plus I'm rather worried that the way I'm approaching this is a ridiculous mix of information and strained humor that will baffle some people and offend others. I suppose I shouldn't worry about that just yet. Stephen, I will definitely consider your way (speaking first), but I guess one of my hangups (such a long list!) is that most of the possibilities for groups to speak to in my area are Serious Business People whereas I've tried to take a more informal approach that they're not necessarily used to. Pondering, pondering. Nevertheless, it's true, I have some loose connections (so I've frequently been told, tra la). I guess I hesitate to prevail upon them for fearing of putting them in an awkward position. But I'm pretty confident at least some of my notions are on track, so they wouldn't have to feel as though they were completely destroying my life. I'm very close to a decent first draft of the ebook, which provides me with the structure I need to consider the next move, whether it's speaking first or whatever. Funny you insist on 90 days, because that's my time frame too! Much obliged for your insight. You two: Rocking it.

Nomad Cigar Company
Nomad Cigar Company

Ummm, other than "Launch Jacking" the threads here (it is now the Erika, Jason, AND Dan party :) - The more the merrier! Can't get enough advice (not matter how successful one is). The fact of the matter is that there are so many hours in the day. "Do everything" is not a realistic option. If you feel that it is...than I respectfully suggest one needs more ideas. The methods of choosing what to run with vary. What makes you the happiest, the most money, gives back, etc, etc. Hour in the day are the one thing we all deal with. Thanks for the advice!

Ashley Festa
Ashley Festa

Thank you both for your thoughtful replies. I'm going to mull these things a little bit, but what I hear you both saying is that I'm probably trying too hard, which is clouding my view of things. It's always so much easier to write for customers than write for myself. But, practice practice practice, yes? :)

Mikele Burcaicea Ibrahim
Mikele Burcaicea Ibrahim

Thanks! We regularly schedule lunches and dinners with the docs around town. Their referrals have been what has kept us in business. We also have tried to have a free seminar for new parents at a popular local kids store and one family showed. Maybe we will offer food next time.

Dan Waldschmidt
Dan Waldschmidt

1. Maybe you turn on a web cam and do live streaming your artistic process 2. Maybe you ask local resorts to let you do an art show there live and to hang your work (and offer for sale) 3. Maybe you offer your art for rent through TurningArt or for sale through ArtSpace Try a bunch of these things. See what works. See what makes you happy. Dan

Dust Bunny Mafia
Dust Bunny Mafia

Okay, maybe I should rephrase it...as of right now (and the coming months) I am not looking to sell anything first. The goal is to grow the audience and get people reading the comics then if they happen to want a comic on a mug, then we'd go from there. The idea is to get the comics into a bigger venue, down the road (many miles and states away) I want the dust bunnies to become the next Animaniacs or Looney Tunes type cartoon. I've been using the clever search part of Twitter recently and have been growing my followers list by responding as the dust bunnies would whenever people tweet mentioning "dust bunnies."

Erika Napoletano
Erika Napoletano

Ah, but you just said you don't want to sell them stuff. So I don't really understand what the goal is to "build the brand" by getting more traffic. I have to look at other cartoonists as my only plausible comparison. Gaping Void and The Oatmeal both use the traffic to parlay into books, posters, and other ventures. The Oatmeal even raised a crapload of money for the Tesla museum using his audience and that traffic. I'll take a swing and hope it helps. Start with polls. Ask you audience what their favorite comics are and try a greatest hits approach, featuring and thanking the reader who mentioned the favorite. Bring your audience IN instead of keeping them out. Look for other distribution channels, like exploring what small levels of syndication look like and what sites might benefit from having your work featured on their site.

Dan Waldschmidt
Dan Waldschmidt

You are right that time ultimately is a factor. I just find that busy people seem to be doing 10x as much as everyone else. They do what they love and so they just move around the nonsense that everyone else thinks is important -- TV, etc.... Dan