I've enjoyed talking a little more business the last few weeks, I hope you have too.
What I never realized when I started an online business what how much I would learn. To continue to grow you have to be constantly learning. It's an aspect I've realized I really enjoy. Putting everything I learn into practice is sometimes tricky, but learning is always a step in the right direction.
In today's post I wanted to share with you all the resources I've found super helpful over the past year. There are countless classes, trainings, business coaches and groups - so if you are looking for one it can be hard decide. Perhaps me giving you a little review of what I've used will help.
Some of the following links are affiliate links, all that means is that I make a small commission if you purchase the thing I'm recommending. It doesn't cost you a penny more. Also know that I'm not recommending any of these because of an affiliate link. They are resources I use currently myself, and have invested my own money into them.
So much of business these days is online and social media. I admit at first I really questioned their worth, and didn't want to be active in a million different places. It was completely overwhelming. I've since learned that sometimes you don't have to be the best, you just have to be the loudest. People have to know where to find you. So I've been trying my best to use social media in a smart way. You just take it all one step at a time, one of my coaches says "one bite of the elephant at a time" otherwise you are likely to get overwhelmed.
I joined this online coaching group about a year ago, and boy I'm glad I did. It's full of creative women who support each other in business. We have 3 trainings a month on a given topic (which changes monthly) and all month long we have a Facebook group where we can chat, ask questions and support one another. This group has been one of the best business decisions I've made! Look into it, and see if it may be right for you, I've learned a TON!
Here are the other platforms I've decided to take on: Instagram (I'm still needing to grow here, I don't totally understand how it works), Facebook, Pinterest. In fact, there's a good chance you are here because you found me in one of those places.
Here are a few social media training resources I've used to grow...
I'm currently in this course, and it's been so good! Rachel teaches ways to increase your engagement and grow your audiences in ways that make sense (think spreadsheets, data, proof). I'd highly recommend this course for anyone ready to get serious about Facebook. I've grown 500 likes in the last two months but my reach has more than doubled to 10k, and my engagement is way up! I still need to work on a few of the strategies, but I'm impressed! She also has a free Facebook group you can join if you want to check it out first before purchasing, there is so much you can learn there too! Here's the link to the group.
This is a great training walking you step by step through how and why to use Pinterest to grow your business. I've actually listed to this whole course twice, there is so much information in here, I could probably go back and listen again for a refresher! Pinterest is not only a fun social media for ideas, but it is also a huge traffic generator for any creative businesses website - and it's free!
This is essentially a scheduling app for Pinterest. But there are some other neat features in this program I just recently figured out. You can share your content to others (Tribes) so they can share your pins too. This is another fantastic way to get traffic to your site. This program starts free so you can give it a try and then subscribe monthly if you feel like it's worth it. So far I've been super impressed with it's usefulness and easy layout.
If you are ready to start monetizing your blog, I'd highly recommend this training:
Affiliate marketing is merely earning a small commission from the products and services you recommend when people click on your links to purchase. In the training, Tasha walks you step by step on the best practices, how to get started, and how to maximize your earnings without feeling too "salesy" or like you are always pitching. It's a class I took last summer, and I'm still (always) working on implementing and improving on all I've learned.
And, when you start making money and you need a better system to keep track of it all, Freshbooks is a great accounting program. It's very user friendly, easy to get set up and makes you look super professional. Their customer service is also outstanding, which is important for something like this!
Another resource I use to learn are podcasts, I really enjoy listening to them while I'm painting or cleaning a piece of furniture. There are many great ones out there - here are a few of my favorites:
Hands down the most amazing free resource out there. He interviews several of the big names in business and is always willing to share what worked and what hasn't worked for him. If you've never checked this one out, you are in for a treat!
Dale comes at business from a refreshing angle. He's always looking to encourage and inspire. He interviews some very interesting authors, and entrepreneurs and I really have enjoyed them all.
And when you need a little light hearted design advice, or just a good laugh, these two are fun! John and Sherry are just hilarious together and are sure to brighten your day.
Well, that wraps up this resource list for you, I hope you find it helpful! I'm sure I'll be adding to it as I continue to learn more each day.