How To Start A Podcast In 10 Simple Steps?

This article will help you move from a state of confusion regarding what you need to actually start a podcast to a state of clarity. It’s full of actionable tips and advice, focused towards the essentials so you can have your own podcast in no time!

Podcasts have been all the rave now for the last few years.

Entrepreneur Magazine already wrote about it back in 2016 on how podcasts can prove to be an amazing marketing tool and add on to the content strategy of ANY business.

I’m a big Podcast nerd myself and listen to several ones religiously.

A few months ago, I’ve decided to start my own podcast – the BoldVoices Podcast . The show’s focus is on inspiring you to own your voice in life plus business. And, to provide you with actionable steps on how to do so.

Now, ever since starting and launching my podcast it has been soaring up the ranks on iTunes. I’ve gotten question after question from fellow business owners on the practicalities of ‘starting your own podcast’.

So, this article is all about that and is filled with actionable steps!

Not only that, I’ve actually also recorded an Instagram IGTV (instagram video) on this a little while ago. If you’d like to check out the video in addition to this post, you can do that here:

After getting several requests and follow up questions, I decided to put the 10 steps into a blog post as well, plus answer any and all additional questions I got.

So, without further ado, here they are:

Step 1 = Decide on a name & a niche.

First things first. What do you want to podcast about? What’s going to be the center theme of your podcast?

Also, in which category does this theme fit when you go research podcast categories?

Then, you want to make sure to have a name in mind. At the beginning, it’s great to have a strong name around the theme of your podcast or even super clearly what your podcast is about. You can always change the name later on if you feel the need to do so.

Which brings me to a question I get asked a lot if you should title the podcast with your own name, aka ‘The fill-in-the-blank show’?

The short answer to that is that if you already have a loyal following of a fairly good size (we’re talking tens of thousands of followers), I say go for it.

But if you’re just starting out to brand yourself – or, you are planning to focus the ‘brand of the podcast’ on something other than your own name, you want to probably go with a more generic name.

In the end, it’s totally your call but don’t get stuck on this step, okay? We’ve got nine more to go :).

Step 2 = Get the correct mic 🎙

Podcasting is all about that audio. I mean, heck, it’s an audio only consumption medium.

As such, the main thing you want to focus on is recording a good quality episode from the get go. There’s not much an audio engineer can do with a poorly recorded file.

Unless your podcast is titled something with ‘Life Advice From My Car’ (by the way, this is a horrible title – don’t take it lol!), you want to have good audio.

Think about it! If you listen to a podcast or even an audio book with all sorts of background noise, you’re probably going to get a headache soon because you need to concentrate more to listen to the content.

Make it easy for your listener. Get a great microphone!

My favorite, budget-friendly microphone – and that I use to record my own podcast – is this one:

Step 3 = Record content

Yep, now you want to get down and start recording those words that have been vibrating inside your chest for months!

It’s super exciting once you get to this step.

I recommend you simply block out a morning or afternoon of about three hours on your calendar, grab some ice water and a coffee or tea and start recording.

It’s great to have about 3-5 episodes finished and under your belt before you launch your podcast so that you can schedule the release of them out for a few weeks.

This, in turn, gives you time to plan your next, surely awesome, episodes.

Step 4 = Use headphones for interviews 🎧

Podcast interview

I’ve made that mistake during my first interview but neither me or my guest used headphones. What happened is that you were able to hear an echoing sound on the recording after. No good, my friend.

So, from now on, I’ve added a little note in my Podcasting Calendar for guests to be prepared to have headphones ready for an interview and to use them.

Whichever headphones you’re most comfortable with, will do.

It also is a great way to totally focus on the recording and not get distracted by outside noises coming from, for example, your snoring dog Amy.

Step 5 = Do the editing of your episodes (or hire a freelancer to help you with it)

Personally and due to time reasons since I run my marketing agency, FunnelGal, full time, I outsource the editing of my podcast episodes to a super talented freelancer who works on Fiverr.

For those of you interested in outsourcing, the prices can vary a LOT.

However and if you’re just starting out and your podcast is still on the way to becoming a chart dropping badass, the average price you want to pay for is about $60 per 60 minute of episode editing.

So, in short, if you’re recording an interview and it’s 60 minutes long, you are looking at paying your audio engineer/ podcast editor about $60 to get the finished file back.

If you’re planning on releasing at least 1 new episode per week (which is recommended!), you’re looking at an investment of $240 to outsource this new marketing stream.

Podcast editing

If you are more into DYI-ing it and you’ve got some free time at your hands, Camtasia is the most popular software out there to edit your podcast recordings.

Step 6 = Choose podcast intro/outro + music

If you’re listening to a lot of podcasts like myself, you love when a podcast has a great short intro and outro.

Ideally, you want the intro to set the tone of the overall podcast and what’s about to come. It should give the listener a vibe of your podcast.

The outro is a great way to ask your listeners to maybe share this episode on social media if they enjoyed it or, to ask them what their main takeaway was, etc.

The outro can also serve as a way to funnel your podcast listeners further into a funnel and turn them into your email list subscribers if you offer a special towards the end.

There are many ideas to play with. So, have fun with it!

Oh and in regards to where to find cool music to add to your podcast intro, I personally love finding tracks on AudioJungle.

Step 7 = Pick podcast hosting service

There are quite a few podcast hosting services out there. They all work the same, essentially.

Picking a hosting service should be probably the fastest of all these steps.

To make things easy for you, the most popular one and the one I use is LibSyn (also known as Liberated Syndication).

To register your podcast, simply click here and pick a plan (note: it’s super affordable and starts at $5/month): https://signup.libsyn.com/

After you registered, don’t forget to upload your first 2-3 finished episodes you recorded prior, remember? Awesome.

Step 8 = Register podcast on iTunes connect

You’re almost there! You can almost launch *yay*!

Now, we want to go ahead and register your podcast on iTunes. Your podcast needs to be submitted and approved first by iTunes before it’s actually live and downloadable.

To do so, simply click on the following link. It will take you there directly.

https://itunesconnect.apple.com/login?module=PodcastsConnect&hostname=podcastsconnect.apple.com&targetUrl=%2Fmy-podcasts%2Fnew-feed&authResult=FAILED

Step 9 = Also, register on Stitcher, Spotify, Googleplay, Tunein

It’s the same when it comes to your content marketing as for your financial investments… the key word here is: DIVERSIFICATION.

After all and depending on where you are located at, there’s probably an influx of people using Apple products (and iTunes) or not.

You want to essentially cover all your bases and make sure to register your podcast on as many, different channels as possible.

The coolest thing?

Whenever you upload an episode to LibSyn (your new hosting service), it will actually send out a bat signal and publish the uploaded episode once you click ‘LIVE’ on all previously chosen channels.

That way you don’t have to go to every broadcasting platform but your host will do the work for you. Pretty sweet deal, right?

Step 10 = Once approved, promote your new podcast to your email list and on social media.

Your podcast is only as valuable as it has people actually listening to it. The more peeps from your ideal audience are downloading and listening to your Podcast, the better!

How do you get the word out there that you’ve got a podcast that is going live on XYZ date?

Simple. You actually tell people about it :).

Yep, you read that right.

Now is no time to be shy. Let people in on the progress of you thinking about starting a podcast to actually launching it and episodes you’re currently recording, etc.

Pull back the curtains! And post updates all over on your active social media channels as well as send out emails to your list.

Et voila! You’re going to have your first few loyal listeners soon :).

Finally and if you’re interested in learning more about how to market your podcast so that it can rank higher in the charts, check out this related article:

Oh and be sure to share this article if you’ve found it helpful <3.

Let’s do this!

How to find & attract the type of client you’d like to work with?

If you’re a new business owner or a seasoned one, the one question that you keep asking yourself revolves around your ‘ideal client’ or, more particularly:

“How to identify and attract the type of client I want to work with?”

In other words, “what’s the ideal client for my business?”

If you’ve been subscribed to my blog for a while now or you follow me on social media, you know I’m a big fan of the saying:

This rings no more true then when determining and deciding what clients to work with!

At this point and if you’re still fairly fresh in your business, you might be secretly asking, “But why? Why is it really so important?”

I want to make sure to answer this because if you understand this right now, your future business will thank you a thousand fold later on ;).

Working with the right or ideal client can make the work or service you do for them not feel like actual work. Truly! You’re going to love getting up in the morning because you so enjoy working with them and their cause!

Imagine you’ve just quit your 9-5 a couple of months ago… you just managed to sign on a few clients and you couldn’t be more proud.

But a majority of them will soon turn out to be the ‘wrong clients’ for you.

A few more weeks or couple of months into your business, you’re going to find asking yourself WHY YOU EVEN QUIT YOUR 9-5 IN THE FIRST PLACE!

You’re going to feel nervous, tired, anxious hopping on a call with these clients, uncomfortable actually doing the work for them, etc.

I’ve honestly experienced and seen it all.

That’s why I’m so passionate about this topic!

Because I’ve seen a lot of budding entrepreneurs and small business owners, actually shut down their business and go back to a regular job!

And all, because they didn’t receive any help and couldn’t figure out how to:

[A] Identify and attract the right type of client to work with.

And…

[B] Charge the right pricing for their services and not down-sell themselves, even as they’re just starting out.

{The latter I’m going to be dedicating another in-depth blog post on soon, so be sure to SUBSCRIBE to this blog to get notified when that is ;).}

So, let’s focus on [A] so that your business dreams you’ve harbored during your regular job (or while still in college), actually do come true <3. Ready?!

STEP #1: IDENTIFY YOUR OWN PERSONALITY TYPE. Or, who are you?

This may seem counterintuitive at first but a big portion of figuring out who you want to work with has to do with understanding who you are.

You didn’t expect that, did ya?

So, I want you to pick up your journal right now and answer the following questions:

  1. Am I the kind of person that cares about the cause of a business and/or brand? Or, do I care more about the usability of the product?
  2. Do I love talking to people on the phone, do video conferences, etc.? Or, do I prefer to communicate with people in business through email and in writing in general?
  3. What’s my personality type? Once I know this, I know which other personality types and characters I match well and which ones to avoid.
    1. A great way to determine your personality type has been the 16Personalities test. It only takes 12 minutes to complete and the results are astounding.
  4. Do I want to work with experienced, high-end clients and close projects of $15,000 and up? Or, do I feel more comfortable working with beginning business owners and charge $1,000 for my average service?

This list of questions could go on and on.

Typically and once you start journaling, you’re going to find yourself writing away and coming up with one point after the next.

Once you are done, step away and look at it.

I betcha a certain type of persona that you want to work with has already started creating itself in your mind.

STEP #2: WHY DID YOU GET INTO BUSINESS IN THE FIRST PLACE?

Often times when we’re in the grind and the hustle and bustle of daily business activities, it’s easy to forget why we got into business in the first place.

Remind yourself right now…

+ What the number one reason was?

+ What was the moment that sparked that fire inside your chest to start your business?

+ Why did you want to do your particular business? There’s a thousand and more other things you could have done. Why did you choose this? And if you haven’t started your business yet, why do you want to be doing XYZ?

STEP #3: WHAT MISSION DO YOU WANT TO ACCOMPLISH WITH YOUR BUSINESS?

Have you ever heard that each great business has also a great mission?

If you haven’t taken the time to craft out a mission statement for your new business yet, now is the time!

What are some causes that you care about? Are there causes that you and your ideal client have in common?

Look at the clients you’ve already worked with in the past or, are working with right now. What aspects of their business do you enjoy growing the most?

Why do you want to be thinking about all that?

Because people do business with people and brands they trust.

Crafting out your mission statement and being vocal about it on your social media, creates trust in your ideal clients that you and only you are the right person for them to work with!

STEP #4: ANALYZE YOUR INDUSTRY & YOUR OWN DATA

https://www.sethgodin.com/

When it comes to any and all industries, there are particular client and customer types already pre-created.

In case you’re completely innovating your industry, you might want to create a new ‘client or customer persona’.

But for most of us, identifying your own ideal client has a lot to do with researching your industry in addition to getting clear on your own business and yourself.

Now, how do you do this?

There are a few ways to go about your research.

According to TopDogSocialMedia, here is a way to do it:

If you are B2B, try Googling the companies and organizations you would love to work with. Read the bios of their senior decision makers to learn more about them. You can gain additional information on these people (and others similar to them) on LinkedIn and Twitter.
If you are B2C, imagine each type of ideal client. For example, perhaps you are you looking for busy soccer moms or millennials who commute to work. Create a clear picture in your mind of who each of these people are.
Now construct a list of possible labels for each of your top ten clients.
What label will each most strongly identify with? Make note of the commonalities and differences.
Use these labels to create a clear picture of who your ideal clients are and how they see and represent themselves to the world.

https://topdogsocialmedia.com/get-marketing-attract-ideal-clients/

Next, if you already have a website for your business, be sure to integrate it with a Facebook Pixel!

I can not stress how important it is because while you’re getting clear on other things and keep sending traffic to your site, the Facebook Pixel will do a lot of the work for you in terms of creating an audience profile.

Oh and the same goes for Google Analytics! Don’t shy away from it.

Successful business owners look at and continue to learn from their numbers – in all areas of business. But you need to put your business in the best position possible to make those calls.

Additionally and if you have enough data, you can use sites like www.semrush.com to see where your traffic comes from.

This, in turn, can help you identify on which platforms your audience hangs out at the most which we talk more about in the up-coming Step 6.

STEP #5: KNOW YOUR IDEAL CLIENT LIKE THE BACK OF YOUR HAND

If you are reading this right now and your business ain’t flowing yet, it is probably because you spent more time asking yourself things like:

“How can I get more sales?”

“How can I sign another client to cover my fix costs this month?”

“Why is nobody buying from me?”

“Why am I not closing during sales calls?”

Etc.

All of these questions asked at the right time are valid questions.

Though, most of the time, the root to the solution of these questions is in determining the ideal client for your business!

You see, once you went through all of the previous steps, you’re going to elevate your language and how you show up when talking to him/her – if on social media or on the phone!

Your ideal client has a very particular way of speaking and thinking about things and particularly the NUMBER ONE PAIN POINT your business can help him/her solve the most!

This is very important to understand.

Most entrepreneurs and businesses fail to attract their ideal client because of the language they use in their branding AND marketing.

How can you change that?

(a) Identify 3 big competitors in your market.

(b) Go on their social media profiles (particularly Instagram, Blogs & Youtube), join their Facebook Groups, etc. for the SOLE PURPOSE to read through all of the COMMENTS they’ve been getting.

(c) Create a Google Spread Sheet & jot down all of the follow-up questions their followers have been asking them.

(d) Notice a pattern that is going to come up of particular questions and pain points.

(e) Decide on 3 pain points off all the questions you’ve collected.

(f) Test those 3 pain points with your own audience by publishing content.

(e) Identify the NUMBER ONE pain point AND messaging that your audience seems to relate to the most.

(f) Et voila! You’ve nailed your messaging.

If you follow these steps and you do this at least once per quarter, you can be sure that your business is growing exponentially and fast ;).

STEP #6: MEET YOUR IDEAL CLIENTS WHERE THEY HANG

Are your clients the type of people who spend a whole Saturday hanging out at Ikea or, do they prefer to go shopping at Hermes on Rodeo Drive?

Maybe they prefer to check out .. on Melrose Avenue or, they simply like to shop online?

Do you see where I’m going with this?

You HAVE TO take your time and find out where your ideal clients hang out at the most.

This will depend who you target in terms of age range, gender, industry, etc.

But most of the time, your ideal clients congregate on at least one of the social media channels.

STEP #7: BRAND YOURSELF LIKE THE CHAMP THAT YOU ARE

Now, it’s all about now playing it shy but showing the world and your ideal clients how awesome you are!

Mackwebsolutions has summed the core process for awesome branding up with this cool infographics:

Another component of great branding is to have a consistent content strategy in place.

In case you’d like to learn more about this component of effectively attracting your ideal clients through your content, check out this related article on the blog:

Now, it’s time to market yourself because you’re ready!

I hope you found this article helpful.

Be sure to spread the love and share it it if it has helped you! Or, screenshot parts of it and post it on your Instagram Story & tag me @corneliapauline <3.

Also, if you know your clients mostly hang out on Facebook and in Facebook Groups in particular, check out my FREE guide on,

“How to attract 10 new clients each month on Facebook without paying a dime for ads!”

It’s pretty neat with lots more details and tricks.

Plus, I’d recommend you check out the course details that are going to pop up after you opt in to one of my signature programs – Facebook Famous ;).

It’s been a game changer for many service-based entrepreneurs, network marketers and coaches who have scaled to $10,000/month with my Facebook Famous branding & selling strategies.

Let’s do this!

What Pregnancy Taught Me About The Art & Science Of Business Goal Setting

This article is about how pregnancy and preparing to give birth to my first child taught me about goal setting in business.

I also hope to encourage you to prepare for any other big goal you have this year like a mom prepares for labor AND giving birth to a baby during pregnancy!

9 months.

39 weeks.

273 days.

That’s approximately how long it takes to grow a human inside your body.

A pretty magnificent feed if you think about it, granted that that’s a relatively small period of time in a normal human’s life.

But magnificent, regardless :).

What is equally amazing is that it took me about the same amount of time to prepare for this big goal I have – birth.

That’s right! As a first-time mom (and I’m sure many second and third and fourth time moms too), preparing myself for this event called ‘labor and birth’, was on my upmost mind these past few weeks.

Today, while sipping away on an Iced Almond Milk Latte, I realized that I don’t think I’ve ever quite prepared the same way for any other goal I had in my life!

Especially, in business.

And I am an entrepreneur and the owner of the digital marketing agency, FunnelGal!

Let that sink in for a second.

It honestly shocked me when I started to draw comparisons in my mind and quickly, started to journal about it. That’s when this article came into existence.

Sure, there were high school and college tests and graduations in my life, the wedding to my husband Ben, countless moves, trips, business revenue goals, etc.

Though, nothing – and I repeat NOTHING – has innately made me prepare with such an explicit carefulness to detail and towards one goal, as my pregnancy.

Lemme explain and if you’re a guy reading this right now, this is for you too!! I promise it will be worth your while and after you finish reading this article, I know you’re going to have a completely different perception around goal setting as well.

For starters, the prospect of pushing out an insanely huge thing – a baby – out of one of your body’s entrances is motivation enough to learn more about it. I think we can all agree on that.

But what can we take away from that about business goal setting?

Well, to begin with, we need a why.

A big, mother-fucking…

W-H-Y.

If your ‘why‘ ain’t big enough, your innate drive to prepare the best way you can and accomplish your goal that is related to your why, is diminishing significantly.

So, how can we develop an equally big why as ‘pushing a baby out of your vulva‘?

If we think about the comparison between pregnancy/birth AND business, we can come up with a refreshing new framework of what makes a great WHY.

Now, we’ve already established that a WHY is needed because it’s the gas that helps continuously operate your engine to drive you forward.

Copyright Simon Sinek

As such, a great WHY needs to have/be:

+ Urgent. It needs to have a due date.

+ It needs to have some form of emotional connection related to it.

You need to be able to feel the creation and development of your goal into existence. For example, for a pregnant soon-to-be mom that is the thought of knowing the baby is growing & developing every day plus imagining it.

+ It needs to have a fear related to it, say if ABC ain’t happening, XYZ might occur – this in turn again, creates an innate need to figure things out.

Say, you eat tons of sweets all day, every day during the duration of your pregnancy, you might get pregnancy-related diabetes which in turn can harm you and your baby.

+ It needs to have a simply wonderful outcome that is filled with love.

The outcome for pregnant women is the thought of holding your beautiful baby in your arms one day. When you’ve achieved the goal, what is one wonderful thing you’re going to be able to experience?

+ Your WHY needs to be so big to have potential life-altering effects on you and your family.

A baby changes everything in your family.

Say, you get featured on Forbes or invited to do a TEDTalk, etc. all of these things, alter the course of your life going forward in some way as well! If your WHY does not include a life-altering change, it is not a big enough why.

Dream bigger! Think bigger!

Copyright @CorneliaPauline

If you had established this strong of a WHY, could you imagine how radically different you’d achieve any and all goals?

And I betcha your business would look very different right about now.

Let’s move into the second important piece of achieving any goal:

EXECUTION.

For those of you that have never been pregnant, I want to bring you quickly up to speed on ALL the things that are suggested you do as a pregnant woman.

All of these things essentially are there for prepping you for the big day – labor and birth.

Here’s the list:

  • Daily meditations or mindfulness training.
    • This help you start developing the right mindset to make it through hours of labor filled with probably and surely excruciating waves of pain, also known as contractions.
  • Daily breathing exercises.
    • Practicing deep breathing – so inhale until you can’t fill your lungs with oxygen anymore and then slowly let the air slip out of our body again. This is scientifically proven to lower stress levels when faced with any sort of challenges.
  • The right nutrition.
    • I know that not every one of my friends have gone crazy about their nutrition when pregnant and have splurged a bit every now and then – myself included. However, there are a clear set of suggestions you want to be following when pregnant. Your diet changes. After all, you are creating a human being – all while going about your day!
    • Nutrition for pregnant women is very similar to the kind of strict nutrition lifestyle, athletes, high fashion models, a vegan or someone that is lactose-intolerant follows.
  • Pelvic floor exercises.
    • In case you don’t know what they are, don’t fret about it. It’s something that starts becoming important when you get pregnant because exercising your pelvic floor muscles will make actual birth and postpartum healing so much better.
  • Exercise.
    • Oh my gosh, exercise has been awesome to maintain a healthy, positive mindset during pregnancy and to feel strong and beautiful throughout each passing day of being pregnant. Healthcare professionals are suggesting everything from yoga to cardio and weight training.

  • Education.
    • I’ve watched documentaries pertaining to labor and birth like ‘The Business Of Being Born‘ plus Youtube videos, read books on how I can ‘improve’ my labor and birth outcome, attended child-birthing classes like the Bradley Method Class, etc. I feel like I could give a course on pregnancy right about now haha :).
  • Labor preparations.
    • Here, I’m going to include everything from choosing the right care provider to deciding where to have the baby, etc.
  • Etc.

In short and during the timeframe of nine months, your FOCUS is on creating the BEST environment for your baby to grow, thrive and be healthy.

My question for you is:

Can you say you are preparing in the same meticulous way for any type of business goal you have at the moment?

OR,

Is this something you could approve upon? 

I am one hundred percent positive that if you are not happy with your business at the moment or, if you have failed to achieve your goals (in the past and in this moment),

There is something about your execution and action list that can be improved upon.

If you go back to the list of all the action items that women do on a pretty regular basis during pregnancy, it should inspire you to look at your own daily list of business execution items as well.

Also, are they all connected to your WHY we talked about before and moving you towards achieving one, definite GOAL.

You need a different ‘list of execution items’ for different goals!

It is easy feel overwhelmed in your business, if you have not set a CLEAR WHY, defined ONE CLEAR GOAL and worked out an execution list on how to get there.

You can find a great further read on ‘business goal setting’ on INC. Magazine here that goes into detail on the different components of a goal you want to be focusing on as a CEO for your business.

I can guarantee you that once you worked out an ‘action or execution list’ – similarly, to a woman that has just found out she was expecting a beautiful baby – your imminent achievement of your goals is a given!

Side Note: You might also enjoy this related article on how to achieve $1 million in revenue in your business: https://corneliapauline.com/2018/08/08/4-big-milestones-to-reach-1-million-in-sales-with-your-business-online/

Furthermore and regardless, how tired you might feel, if you experience emotions of doubts and worries, if you feel demotivated because you don’t feel your best on a given day,… whatever it is!

Your WHY on why you are doing what you are doing every single day because you’ve got a clear, definite goal with a set due date – WILL KEEP YOU GOING!

Just like it helps a woman during her pregnancy ;).

If you think about anything that you’ve achieved in the past that was worth-while achieving, you’ve probably invested months – even years, at times – prepping for it.

Preparing for this life-altering event of giving birth and becoming a parent takes time. And it should!

If you find yourself impatient because you haven’t quite hit your business goals yet – be patient.

  1. Reflect on why you haven’t hit your goal yet.
  2. Work on re-developing a stronger WHY for you.
  3. Create a new plan and prepare yourself better for your goal now that you’ve read this article.
  4. Have an unwavering faith in a positive outcome.
  5. Let go and do your daily dues to put yourself in the best position to succeed.

Here’s to not only birthing healthy babies but also, birthing successful businesses :)!

If you’ve enjoyed this article, be sure to go ahead and share it online. Oh and don’t forget to subscribe.

Let’s do this!

7 Proven Ways To Make Passive Income Online

Passive income can be defined as, income resulting from cash flow received on a regular basis, requiring minimal to no effort by the recipient to maintain it.”

A big portion of why I first decided to become interested in making money online was because it allows you to exponentially grow your income

This unique capability of the internet’s reach is unlike anything that has existed only a few decades prior. 

Remember things like the ‘Texas Oil Boom’ or the ‘California Gold Rush’ in America back from your history class? You see, the internet and in essence, creating revenue streams online is the same – IF not bigger. 

So, if you wish you would have lived during Rockefeller times and also, been smart enough to realize your opportunities to dramatically change your economical situation – you want to be investing in creating an online business!

Or, for goodness sake, even a side hustle :).

Can you tell how passionate I am about this?

But don’t write me in a few years, telling me I didn’t give you a heads’ up. 

This is your heads up if you haven’t taken any action yet and don’t have an online business yet or, started on one.

You might be confused as to what exactly you want to be doing and why.

That’s why I created this blog article.

It’s for those of you who understand the opportunity, want to take advantage of it but are still a bit confused about which road to take. 

So, here’s my list of 7 Proven Ways To Make Passive Income Online

Why am I talking about ‘passive income’ in particular?

Because I’m a big believer to create a smart business that’s working for you in 6 months, 1 year, 10 years,… heck! Regardless, right? 

I mean, if you can take your family on a luxury vacation to French Polynesia for a month, watching your kids play in the sand on the beach while sipping on a Mai-Tai and kissing your significant other during sips and all that WITHOUT having to worry about money because you got your financial shit and business together…

Copyright: https://www.funjet.com/destinations/tahiti

Well then, in my book, you’ve done something right ;).

So… that’s why I am using the words ‘passive income’ even though some of these options might not be passive right away – they VERY WELL have the possibility to be so IF you’re doing things right.

NUMBER 1: AFFILIATE MARKETING

Say you don’t have a product. 

You’re not keen on teaching. 

You’re not keen to write or produce or create something you can sell.

What to do? 

You can use other people’s awesome products and promote them. 

Promote them how???

That’s where it gets tricky. 

[A] You need to educate yourself on how to grow an email list, how to form a trustworthy relationship with your list and different traffic options. 

[B] You also need to watch out for promoting the right affiliate products.

What are the right affiliate products?

  • Products were somebody has to sign up on a monthly subscription basis. Why? Because this creates RECURRING revenue for you *duh*!
  • Proven products that actually solve a real business need. My favorite? Business software. 
  • Companies that agree to pay out a minimum commission of 30% on each product sale. {Granted if you’re i.e. promoting fashion or technology items, it’s okay if the commission is lower and that’s okay since you’re promoting more higher end items.} However getting a commission of 3%… don’t bother.

BONUS TIP: 

My personal favorite affiliate programs where I’m making 80% of my monthly affiliate commission from are:

For more cool tools or softwares you can promote, check out my related article: https://corneliapauline.com/2019/05/31/6-best-digital-marketing-tools-to-grow-your-business-online-in-2019-fast-intentional/

FINAL SIDE NOTE:

There’s one very real danger to Affiliate marketing and that is that your affiliate partner is in control of the product.

As such, he could shut it down at any given notice. Granted, if you find a reputable company that won’t happen. Regardless, I only recommend to invest in this option as a side income or an initial starting point and then, move on to one of the other options. 

NUMBER 2: ONLINE COURSES & PROGRAMS

Some might argue that you couldn’t create passive income with those but I beg to disagree. Why?

Well, first of all it depends how you’re promoting these online programs. Are they connected to a personal brand – YOU – then, it might be a bit harder to create truly passive forms of income out of them. 

Regardless and once you’re getting to a certain sales level with your courses, you can outsource pretty much near everything! 

From customer and tech support to your students to community managers and more. Some online course creators I know never think about this but it’s truly possible.

Also, when structuring out your courses and BEFORE even launching them, think about how much you personally want or need to be involved in the program to help your students facilitate the desired transformation.

Are weekly one-on-one coaching calls really necessary? Or, can a supportive and exclusive Facebook Group solve that?

Be mindful and strategic about your time.

Think ahead to how you want to be managing the course AND how it fits within your overall business. Then, create it accordingly.

FURTHER INFO: 

If you feel like you’re dying to create an online program or your current one doesn’t seem to be working, stay on the lookout for my new program launching this August – Rocket Launch Lab. Oh and be sure to get on the waitlist to receive $500 OFF the beta launch ;). 

Rocket Launch Lab Waitlist Sign Up Form:
https://funnelgal.com/rocketlaunchlab-01 

NUMBER 3: BLOGS

Yep. Blogs to me can create an amazing passive income stream once you’ve built them up.

Granted, blogs compared to the other previous forms of income take a few more years to build up. But they are amazing money-making machines if done right!

Copyright: https://brandongaille.com/blog-income-report-study/

Some tips when it comes to blogging are:

  • You need to be blogging in a niche and have 1 particular reader in mind.
  • You need to be posting about 20 blog posts a month during at least the first year to create some momentum for your blog.
  • Your blog above anything else needs to be SEO-optimized. That’s where you will get most of your organic traffic from. 
  • Design should never be a main focus for your blog. Quality content should always come first.

And guess what?

You can outsource a shit ton with a blog from hiring a Pinterest manager to create and distribute pins for you to acquire organic Pinterest traffic to hiring SEO-focused blog writers, a brand partnership sales person and more. 

If you love writing and you know you can be consistent when it comes to it – a blog for a specific niche might be a great opportunity for you.

And just to tell you a little story, I met a super humble, cute mom blogger from a tiny town in Arkansas during a conference I attended in Las Vegas that I spoke at. 

Within 7 years, this mom blogger pretty much 10x her husband’s income, allowed him to quit his job and all of them and their 5 children are living off of the growing income of her niche blog! The coolest thing? Her blog is growing on autopilot right now – as is her income. 

If you think 7 years is a long time to grow a business… How about spending 40 years at a corporate job where you could get fired any time and the only income growing opportunity is to be hunting down the next promotion? 

Your choice.

NUMBER 4: CREATE AN ONLINE B2B SOFTWARE

Now and in regards to this passive income option, it depends how ambitious you are as a future software founder :). 

If – say – you’re shooting to achieve multi-multi-millionaire status, your ‘passive income’ might come from you selling your company. Then, investing your money and living off dividends or profits from businesses you’re invested in.

This option is great for someone that has been in the online space for a while and has been noticing a need for a particular business service to solve a pain point which can be done through a – you’ve guessed it… software.

The amazing thing about this nowadays is that I know quite a few founders who aren’t engineers by trade, nor do they know how to code.

But they’ve either partnered up with somebody that can help them realize their vision or, hired somebody!

There’s also no need for taking on venture capitalists or angel investors nowadays. Unless, you know how to play that game and want to. A solid launch strategy and knowledge about digital marketing is all it takes.

The coolest thing about most B2B softwares? They’re creating a recurring passive income from monthly users for you.

This is a great further read if you’re into this option: https://amzn.to/31sTHJB

NUMBER 5: BUY AN ONLINE BUSINESS

Another great way to generate passive income is to buy an already lucrative, built up online business and/or website. 

This is a lesser known option and it does require some background for how online businesses function. You want to be aware of all of the potential pitfalls a specific online business could bring about with itself. Not only that, you want to know the whole history behind the business before buying it. 

So, yes, this one is for the more experienced online entrepreneur among you guys. 

Where can you find online businesses and websites to buy? 

Here are only a few options: 

Flippa – https://flippa.com/

Exchange Marketplace – https://exchangemarketplace.com/

BizBuySell – https://www.bizbuysell.com 

FE International – https://feinternational.com

Empire Flippers – https://empireflippers.com

NUMBER 6: CREATE AN E-COMMERCE STORE

I’m going to include everything e-commerce after this point, cool? 

From – To: 

  • Doing Amazon FBA, 
  • To selling Wholesale on Amazon, 
  • Creating and selling books on Amazon,
  • Creating a Shopify store and manufacturing your own products,
  • Dropshipping,
  • Etc.

Pretty much, whatever requires selling physical goods of any kind in any shape or form online.

When it comes to creating any type of successful e-commerce stores, it honestly comes down to one word. Ready?

RESEARCH.

Research is going to be your best friend because I’ve found the most successful online e-commerce businesses to have followed the rule:

Market → Product = Fit

{Instead of: Product → Market = Fit}

So, if you can identify a market or need for a product and know a way to make it better or more awesome, etc. go for it!

This option does require one of the highest starting capitals (besides buying an existing online business, of course) but it can be very lucrative. And the best part?

It can create some pretty badass passive income for you for YEARS to come! Not only that, successful e-commerce owners have an easy time exiting and selling their online stores. Another plus for this passive income option. 

TIP:

The best platform in my opinion to host and create your e-commerce store on is by far Shopify. 14-Day Free Trial here: https://www.shopify.com/?ref=gys-llc

FURTHER READ:

If you already have an existing e-Commerce store, one of the best tips I can give you is to double down on your retargeting strategy. For that purpose, I’ve created another blog post a little while ago where you can steal my best converting Abandoned Cart Email Template:

NUMBER 7: BUILD A BRAND OF ‘YOU

“But Cornelia, that would mean that I always had to be doing stuff and engaging with my audience, etc. How is this passive?”

Yes, this point is totally arguable. I agree.

However, there is one thing why this option falls into a passive income category for me. 

Nobody can take away your own brand from you. 

And that’s something you can not argue with me with :).

Think about it!

Every software could crash, Amazon could tank (hey, it could happen ^^), Facebook could be shut down (sorry, Mark!), etc. 

BUT the one thing nobody can take away from you is if you’ve created a successful brand around YOU and built up a loyal fanbase. 

Copyright: https://upcity.com/blog/why-every-agency-owner-needs-to-develop-a-personal-online-brand/

So, I urge you to consider doing this at least in some shape or form in addition to what you’re already doing or deciding to do. 

A great example of somebody that has been doing this is the fashion entrepreneur, Danielle Bernstein.

She’s an A class example of someone that has created a personal brand around herself for years before creating, manufacturing and selling her own clothing brands online.

And you know something?

Danielle NEVER has to worry about excess inventory! Never. She is always selling out during each new or repeat product launch!

Not only that, she’s recently partnered up with a CBD company who wanted her for – you’ve guessed it – her personal brand’s influence. Passive income opportunities are endless for her!

To conclude, having created the right kind of influence online with the right kind of audience is one powerful weapon. 

Okay! That was a long blog post but I hope you’ve found it incredible valuable. 

If you did, be awesome and tag me in your IG Stories @corneliapauline , letting me know which part of this article or tip you liked the most ;).

Have any questions? Leave a comment down below and start the conversation. Oh and of course, don’t forget to subscribe to my blog for more awesome posts to come soon!

Let’s do this!

~ Cornelia Pauline

P.S. This article may contain affiliate links which may result in my being financially compensated for purchases site visitors make through said links.

6 Best Digital Marketing Tools To Grow Your Business Online In 2019 – FAST & INTENTIONAL!

This content may contain affiliate links which may result in my being financially compensated for purchases site visitors make through said links.

It was not easy to narrow it down to 6 but if I had to pick, these are the absolute top 6 ones that I would choose and that my business couldn’t run without at the moment ;).

Let’s dive straight into it. Here’s my software list:

(1) Clickfunnels = #1 Landing Page Builder for 2019

  • Why Clickfunnels? My team and I have helped our clients create multiple 5 and 6-figure funnels by using CF (+ we are using it for our own funnels as well). Without a landing page or simple email opt in page, you’ve got no business online, you’ve got a hobby. To truly start creating a profitable business, you need to focus on building up your email list. Your money is in your list.
    • Clickfunnels makes it super easy to not only build up an email list but profit from it through a variety of funnels you can create with it. Not only that, I trust in the founders Russell Brunson and Todd Dickerson. I haven’t seen anyone innovate this fast when it comes to a landing page software like these two and their team.
  • Key growth benefits:
    1. Landing page builder for generating email leads & selling your products online (both physical and digital).
    2. You can create long-form sales letters, short-form video sales pages, eCommerce product pages, Webinar presentations, etc.
    3. Also, built affiliate presell pages.
    4. Helpful pre-created & designed templates that will help with engagement and conversions.
    5. Mobile- and tablet-optimization functionality of all pages.
    6. Integrated shopping cart builder.
    7. Integrated affiliate program.
    8. Integrated full on email marketing software.
    9. It’s results-oriented. They want you to make money vs just build pretty pages and put them on the web.
    10. And much, much more.
Side note: If you’d like to read a more detailed review of my experience of using Clickfunnels these past 5 years, you can do so here: https://corneliapauline.com/2017/12/08/go-crazy-clickfunnels/

(2) SEMRush. = For supercharging the virality of your content to increase traffic and revenue

  • Why SEMRush? It’s not enough to just create content for the sake of creating content. To experience real, measurable momentum when it comes to your content marketing – you need to understand and look at the numbers. A business owner always knows his numbers.
  • Key growth benefits:
    1. “It’s not just an SEO tool.”
    2. Uncover your competitors’ organic search, paid, content, PR, and social media strategies
    3. Find new keyword opportunities for your blog or target your competitor’s most successful keywords.
    4. Get a clear idea on how you can improve your url’s positioning online.
    5. Offers you a great backlink analysis and more.
    6. And much more.

(3) WeConnect (Linkedin): The single best software out there at the moment to supercharge the growth of your Linkedin account, impact and lead generation.

What the We-Connect dashboard looks like from a member of my team.

  • Why WeConnect? There are not that many automation and growth tools available yet for Linkedin. However, this one is a favorite among my clients and my own team. It allows us to connect, engage and grow our existing Linkedin audience 10x faster AND on autopilot (than if you’d invest hours upon hours of work into your Linkedin content).
  • KEY growth benefits:
    1. It allows you to find your precise ideal clients/customers on Linkedin and send personalized bulk 1:1 invites, compliant with Linkedin policies.
    2. You can create so-called ‘Linkedin bot message sequences’ and send automated and personalized messages to your Linkedin audience.
    3. When someone accepts your Linkedin request, you can send personalized follow-up messages, getting to know your new connections even better.
    4. Automate your LinkedIn profile visits and skill endorsements. Motivate people to visit your profile back.
    5. Like in a CRM ( ), you can sort potential leads and file away messages plus add notes. Super helpful for staying organized.
    6. And much more.

(4) TubeBuddy (Youtube): Youtube certified, FREE browser extension that integrates directly into your Youtube to help you manage your channel with ease.

  • Why TubeBuddy? More than 300 hours of video are uploaded to YouTube every minute. That’s a lot of competition even considering the 1.3 billion people that use the platform regularly.
    • It’s not enough to just produce quality videos. You need data and research to make sure you’re producing the RIGHT videos that will rank.
  • KEY growth benefits:
    1. My personal favorite features are the amazing Keyword Research Tool, the Tag List, Tag Explorer and Suggested Tags.
    2. It’s also got A/B testing for your videos, best times to publish suggestions for your channel, it lets you automatically publish to FB and more…
    3. It has an easy-to-use thumbnail creator and you can save thumbnails for future use.
    4. A Best Practices Checklist for making sure you optimize your video for traffic before clicking that ‘publish’ button.
    5. After uploading a video, it has a Share Tracker feature to make sure you are promoting your video on as many social networks as possible.
    6. And much more. = Seriously the best growth hacking tool for anyone wanting to utilize Youtube to gain more eyeballs on their business and brand.

(5) ViralLoop: The digital word-of-mouth supercharge software

  • Why ViralLoop? Anything and everything that can give you an edge during the launch of a new product (or re-launch of an old one) is awesome. With ViralLoops you can utilize the traditional ‘word of mouth’ power and translate this online.
  • KEY growth benefits:
    1. Create referral campaigns so that when someone on social media refers your FILL-IN-THE-BLANK (physical product, eBook, membership program, software, course, video, etc.), they get a special gift/coupon/bonus/etc. If their friend takes them up on the referral.
    2. Add a gamification element to your referral campaigns.
    3. Recruit superfans or brand ambassadors for your product(s).
    4. Create an eCommerce loyalty program.
    5. Organize a Giveaway that goes viral.

(6) AdBeat: A powerful paid advertising spy tool.

  • Why AdBeat? An Omni-channel approach to advertising is KEY nowadays. You want to not only ever focus on 1 platform but you want to diversify your efforts and where you get your leads/traffic from. Now Facebook has a great free native tool you can use to spy on top advertisers and ads and that is: its own Facebook Ads Library.
    • However, in order to analyze display ads, AdBeat is the Queen! What is it? It is an online marketing SPY tool that allows you to uncover any advertiser’s ad strategy. AdBeat’s focus is on display advertising, not search engine advertising. The tool covers 26 different countries, 90+ ad networks and five different device types (Desktop, iPhone, iPad, Android, Android Tablet).
  • KEY growth benefits:
    1. Uncovers where a specific advertiser runs his/her ads exactly.
    2. Find out an advertiser’s or competitor’s top ads.
    3. Uncover competitors in your industry and market.
    4. Reveal who advertises on a specific domain to be able to advertise on the same domain as well.
    5. Show the top ads for a specific domain.
  • SPECIAL OFFER LINK (unfortunately, ADBeat doesn’t offer a free trial but they are pretty great about their 30-day money back guarantee if you feel like it’s not a fit for you and your business) = www.adbeat.com

BONUS suggestion:

(7)  ActiveCampaign: the email marketing software to grow your email list super fast and effortless.

  • Why ActiveCampaign? My team and I mainly use the built-in email marketing software from Clickfunnels. However, we also use ActiveCampaign and a lot of our clients use it too that want to keep their software budget at a certain price point. ActiveCampaign is a premier email marketing software, regardless of if you have 100 people on your list or 100,000 and more. Its usability will grow with you and your list.
  • KEY growth benefits:
    • ActiveCampaign learns from users’ data and consequently delivers effective, personalized messages and emails.
    • It includes a customer relationship management component that organizes all customer data, consolidates communication channels, and automatically conducts prospect tracking.
    • Easy to use drag-and-drop interface to create your email campaigns.
    • Split test capabilities.
    • Create automated email workflows.
    • Automate your email on-boarding sequence.
    • And much more…
  • SPECIAL OFFER LINK (get your free 14 day trial here) = https://www.activecampaign.com/?_r=5YAZ278A

And that’s it! I hope you found this blog post to be helpful! If you did, be sure to spread the love and share it <3. Did I forget a tool you personally really like? Be sure to leave a comment and tell the rest of us.

How much should a custom Sales Funnel project cost?

Eventually, you find yourself talking about cost.

If you’re a sales funnel builder and expert strategist, as I am, you’ve been asked how much your services cost thousands of times.

And you end up having to make some decisions:

  • What services exactly am I providing for this potential client?
  • How many hours do I think will this take my team and I to complete?
  • How much is the completion of this funnel project worth to the client, from a business perspective? How much return on investment is he/she able to gain from this funnel?
  • Does the client have money? Is the client clear on where he/she wants to take their business?
  • Should I charge hourly, by project or a retainer?
  • Is this a one off funnel project or, is there potential for a long term partnership with this client?
  • How busy am I or is my team? Do I need to take on this project? Do I even want it? How passionate am I about it?

Asking yourself these questions to begin with are very important. Also, how you are going to answer these is important. Evaluating the client from the beginning is crucial.

Why? Because every interaction I am going to have with the client in the future will help me learn more about them and the project at hand. Therefore, it will affect what the cost for the funnel project will be.

Of course, it’s also important to say that cost often times depend on market on location to where you’re based out of.

For the purpose of giving you as much behind-the-scenes information as I can, I’m talking to an American audience in U.S. dollars.

Please take those numbers and prices with a grain of salt, depending on where you live and what the economy and market demand is like in your country.

How much should a custom Sales Funnel project cost?

My team and I have built sales and marketing funnels, or been a part of funnel projects — all on Clickfunnels or BuilderAll — that have ranged in cost from under $1,000 to over $25,000, for complete funnels.

So in short: it depends.

This is why I can not provide you with an exact estimate of the cost or say, “This is what you should charge!”. Because, it varies a LOT.

The thing is, most people’s budget is on average 2-3 times smaller than their wishes or expectations. So if I give you an exact estimate, it’s highly unlikely both of you will be happy once it’s all said and done.

A proper estimate costs money

Let’s talk about the first thing I think a lot of marketing agencies or funnel builders miss out on when quoting for a sales funnel project:

It’s the estimate.

Creating a cost estimate of a funnel project takes time. A lot more time actually than 90% of prospects anticipate. That is, if you’re doing it right and you know what you’re doing.

You might wonder what all is needed to quote someone for a proper funnel project after the initial call with the prospect.

Here’s a quick list:

  • Market research.
  • Funnel hacking of competitors to see a potential marketing angle we could take for your project.
  • Existing social media landscape analysis.
  • Overall existing and potential traffic analysis.
  • Target audience research and analysis.
  • Coming up with ideas for testing potential marketing hooks.
  • Taking inventory if the client has all the assets needed to proceed and create a proper funnel or, if there would be any hold ups (like i.e. there’s a need for creating a teaser video, etc.).
  • Deciding on a funnel type.
  • Etc.

Most funnel builders and/or agencies spend hours and hours to put together a proper proposal for a client.

IF they are not yet charging for creating a price estimate and a proposal for the prospective clients, they are not only leaving money on the table but are not serving their clients at the highest levels.

Prices for such cost estimates from what I’ve seen can range from: $250 up to $5,500.

It’s up to the service provider if he discounts the client the price of the proposal once the client decides to continue working with the service provider.

Who is the funnel consultant?

If you are a funnel consultant of any type that is reading this right now, there are certainly a few common price ranges I can establish for you.

I’ll try my best to be specific with this post but because there are SO many different types of funnel projects you could be working on (like an eCommerce funnel, Book funnel, Digital Course Product sales funnel, B2B Lead Generation funnel, etc.), this is really, really hard.

Well, let’s start by segmenting based on WHO you are working with.

Basically, working with a freelancer will normally be cheaper than working with a marketing agency.

Agencies have more overhead, more padding built in, are more worried about cash flow, and generally just tend to be a bit more on the expensive side.

If you work with an agency, the risk of them falling off the map is generally a little lower, but they probably move a little slower too because they are typically working on numerous projects at once.

Furthermore and when you work with bigger and more established agencies, you’ll have to deal with changing contacts as the project progresses (from sales to design to development to maintenance, etc.).

If you work with a single freelancer, your risks are a bit higher that they might disappear someday.

This means that you want to vet them more carefully and this will be more important than if you decide to work with an agency (big or small).

But freelancers also tend to move much more quickly and don’t juggle as many projects at once. Often times, they even choose to work on one project at a time and that is totally okay if the freelancer knows what he/she is doing and just prefers to work this way.

Additionally, you have the benefit of working with (typically) one person that knows everything about your project the entire time, and you don’t feel like you’re constantly getting bounced around contacts which can happen in some agencies.

Again, for agencies this is totally normal and the most effective way for them to transform a project from conception to completion.

All in all, it is totally possible to have a great relationship with a freelancer or with an agency.

I think it typically depends on the client’s mentality and requirements as to determining which route is better.

In general, freelancers are great for jobs that fit the following criteria:

  • The job is small enough for one person to handle the entire thing (note, most funnel projects fit this category!)
  • The timeline is tight, and you want them to start quickly
  • Communication channels don’t have to be too formal
  • Big contractor agreements don’t have to be signed and the contractor doesn’t need insurance or other common big-business requirements

In general, agencies are better for the following criteria:

  • You don’t want to risk your consultant disappearing
  • You’re okay with a project structure you don’t define (most agencies have established processes you need to be following)
  • You’re okay with a multi-month project (I’d say most agency projects last between 2-6 months)
  • You don’t mind waiting until you can be fit into their schedule to start (often 30-90 days… but great freelancers often have significant backlogs too – so again, it depends)
  • You want a dedicated project manager (some freelancers are phone-call averse, so if you don’t mind that – great!)
  • Your project will require multiple full-time folks working simultaneously, either due to deadlines or huge project scope

Freelancer rates vs Agency rates

First of all, for the sake of this article, I’m going to assume that the funnel project stays in house with the agencies (and is not going to be outsourced or sub-contracted to a third party) and the freelancer is working on the project him-/her-self.

Next, I won’t get into hourly versus project billing and retainers yet.

Most of the time and even if they don’t charge hourly, both the freelancer and the agency has to estimate the amount of hours it will take them to complete the project.

That’s just common business sense because you have to have a feel for how much man power needs to be allocated to create the desired results.

Finally, I’m utilizing these hourly rates as if it’s for billable work and known costs. So, if the rate is $100 per hour and the funel strategy + design will take 50 hours and the development + implementation will take 50 hours and you build in 25 hours for project management, it would be 125 hours and the project would cost $12,500.

Profits, overhead, and everything else are “built in” to the internal hourly rate — just like if someone were billing the client hourly for the work.

Freelancer rates

  • Beginner freelancer: $25-$40 per hour
  • Intermediate freelancer: $40-75 per hour
  • Good, experienced freelancer: $75 – $125 per hour
  • Excellent, in demand freelancer: $125 – $175 per hour
  • Specialist, best in industry: $175 – $400 per hour

Agency rates

  • Small market general agency: $50 – $75 per hour
  • Medium market general agency: $75 – $115 per hour
  • Medium market reputable agency: $115 – $150 per hour
  • Medium market high end agency: $150 – $175 per hour
  • Medium market best in industry agency: $175 – $225 per hour
  • Large market reputable agency: $150 – $175 per hour
  • Large market high end agency: $175 – $250 per hour
  • Large market best in industry agency: $200 – $275 per hour

When I say “best in industry”, I’m referring to an agency that’s made a name for itself in regard to something specific — maybe high-end Clickfunnels websites, or they are famous for doing certain types of funnels for certain industries/markets/target audiences extremely well. It depends.

When I talk market size, I mean the difference between working in big towns or small cities (small market), cities that are thriving but not huge are medium market, or the type of city that’s got pro sports teams and 1 million+ people which would be a large market.

Not listed, but notable, are the mega-markets like New York, Los Angeles and San Francisco types. I’m sure you can pay as much as you desire for services in such places!

Also, these are all guesses.

Please, please, please don’t take these guesses as offense if you think I’m totally off. I’m purely trying to paint a picture of the landscape for you, as best as I see and have experienced it of my 5.5 years of running a marketing agency in this industry :).

You see, I talk to a lot of people. I read a ton – offline and online. I interview a ton of experts on my podcast. I go to numerous conferences throughout the year.

Therefore, I think I have a decent take on the market and how it has been developing these past 5.5 years. And I think, this is a practical range to work with, especially if you feel totally lost on this topic (I hope not anymore!).

Consultants break their own rules all the time

Freelancers and agencies though break their own rules all the time. It’s just part of the game.

For example, say you’re contacted by a big brand and your absolute dream client. In order to have a competitive edge and bid out all the other competitors, a consultant can end up lowering his/her rates by a third (or even more).

Also when working with referrals, the numbers get changed at times and don’t add up anymore to what I’ve previously listed.

Consultants may also charge less if a client continues to work with them over and over again on new funnel projects. Or, they will offer a special pricing if you sign a monthly retainer with them for up to six months or even a year. Naturally, this varies by consultant.

Who is the client?

The client is always a huge factor in price. In short, if I estimate that a client is going to be difficult (based off of our past conversations and communication) and I still decide to take on the client because I believe in his project so much, it can affect the ‘client multiplication effect’ I put on the overall project cost. The same is true the other way round.

What is a ‘client multiplication effect’?

Well, I’m so glad you asked!

Over a number of years now, my team and I started to pick up on certain client qualities that end up well,… costing money.

Here is only a short list of some things that can get expensive:

  • The client doesn’t have one point of contact (instead, multiple people always have to be looped into communication and are needed to make one decision)
  • The client has to get some form of committee or industry approval (think non-profit organizations and the financial industry)
  • The client contact isn’t decisive, or doesn’t seem capable to play the “consultant advocate” role well internally
  • The client has a lot of red tape for decision making
  • The client’s payment schedules are really bad (as in, I might not get paid for work I’ve done for weeks or even months and hence, everything is put on hold!)
  • The client contact is prone to huge, essay-long email threads over small issues with a project
  • The client contact wants daily or frequent phone calls or hour-long meetings
  • The client doesn’t have a clear business plan, constantly changes who he wants to be targeting in the first place and will require a lot of advising and hand-holding along the way

As you can tell, all of these are client-related issues and people or organizational matters. They have little to do with the actual project itself.

Let’s say the work for a project will be around $15,000. I usually add up the estimated ‘client multiplication effect’ by looking at these and similar qualities that could end up getting costly from a project management perspective and apply them to the overall cost.

In a $15,000 project, it’s not uncommon for $3,000 of that to be actual project management costs.

If I decide there are enough concerns to warrant 50% higher project management costs, the project gets a $2,500, or 12.5%, increase in overall project cost.

Looking for client qualities that trigger higher costs is vital as a consultant!

And for potential clients out there and reading this right now: keep in mind that your qualities (organizational and behavioral) affect your consultant’s price and potentially, even his/her performance.

Costs ranges for different types of funnels

There are many types of funnels for various industries (I’ve actually never even heard of an industry where it wouldn’t be beneficial to use a funnel as part of their marketing), and each has their own potential costs associated.

The many different types of funnels

I tend to rank sites in complexity like this:

  • Email opt in funnel: A funnel that has the purpose of building someone’s email list online. Typically, we have an opt in page where something of value is offered for free in exchange for an email address. Then, there is a subsequent thank you page with a possible up-sell or other follow up page.
  • Webinar or online presentation funnel: This is a funnel often used across industries and the primary purpose is to sell a higher-ticket item or, to pre-prep and pre-qualify people and get them on a call with you.
  • Online sales funnel: This can be used to sell digital products of any kind. It’s usually full of up-sells, down-sells, etc. Regardless of, if you’re ‘funneling’ people down to a membership site or to a core offer with up-sells, the difficulty level for such a project is around the same.
  • B2B lead generation funnel: B2b lead generation requires a bunch of things to be integrated with a few funnel sites. Typically, there are bots involved to optimize the lead generation and more.
  • eCommerce funnel: These types of funnels usually require a bunch of outside integrations plus configurations, as well as custom coding due to order counts, etc. There are also a bunch of up-sells and down-sells involved.
  • Podcaster funnel: This is a funnel that is mainly designed for existing podcasters to accelerate your podcast’s success, extend your reach and monetize on your audience.
  • A whole funnel network: Take any one of the previous funnels and think of creating an entire online network with any number of those. This project is the most extensive and time-consuming one.

The hours it takes to build these different types of funnels can vary tremendously; it depends on the consultant’s experience, whether they’ve done similar work before in a particular or related niche, how many “gotchas” appear in the project, how particular the client is about any given funnel step, etc.

However and in my opinion, there are a few key concepts about pricing.

Pricing concepts

Generally, I try to estimate and evaluate the following before I can wrap my head around how much it’s going to cost and how long it will take before we see results.

  • Does the client have an engaged social media following? How does it look like and how engaged/big is it?
  • Does the client have a big paid advertisement budget or rather not?
  • If the client has an existing website, how many unique views a month on his/her website are there?
  • Has the client proven the HOOK of his product he/she is planning on selling?
  • Does the client have an attractive character for his brand and a relatable, engaging brand story that we can use for marketing?
  • Is the client’s product OFFER strong enough or, will we have to work on it?
  • Has the client sold online before and if so, how many unites on a regular daily/weekly and monthly basis?
  • Has the client used a funnel before or, is this his/her first one?

There are a few more identification factors but these are pretty much the most important ones. In case I forgot any, be sure to leave a comment down below.

Now, why is getting this information important?

Well, the client can have a big advertisement budget and an active, engaged social media following plus he/she could have sold online the product before (so it’s a ‘proven sell’). As a result, we will be able to see conversions and a return on investment really quickly with any funnel we’d built for such a client.

If the client has no active social media following, a very small paid advertisement budget and has just launched a brand-new product that has no social proof yet, it is going to take any funnel consultant much longer to get you conversions, in essence.

I hope I was able to illustrate with these two extremes what a funnel consultant is able to do for you and where he/she might be struggling.

Creating and implementing a funnel for a business is not a magical wand swish. It is rather an amplification of how well a business is currently doing and a helping system to take it to the next level.

Let’s Talk Pricing Content

With Clickfunnels (or pretty much any other funnel building software), for example, you can add as many funnel pages as you want. The more funnel pages a marketing strategy might require, the more complex the new project will be. However, again, ‘more pages’ do not mean ‘more effective’ (in terms of ROI).

A funnel with, for example, 3 pages can be way more effective than a funnel with 12 pages. Again, it depends on the client, market and the overall strategy your funnel consultant comes up with.

Now, before sending out a proposal (or understanding the one from your funnel consultant) there are typically a lot of individual factors that you want to take into consideration with:

  • Has the funnel strategy be done before-hand or will it be created as part of the project?
  • How many integrations are needed (think email marketing softwares, etc.)?
  • What software will be used to implement the funnel?
  • Are there any particular specifications or wishes in regards to the design?
  • If copy is included in the funnel project proposal or, will the copy for the funnel pages be provided by the client?
  • If paid advertisement (in the form of Facebook Ads, Youtube Ads, etc.) will be covered as well and in what shape or form? We’re talking how many campaigns, re-targeting campaigns, audience research, you name it.
  • If organic social media marketing is included or, done by the client or, another freelancer?
  • Are emails included or not?

These are just some quick thoughts on content of a funnel proposal. There are more, but this is a great starting point.

Side note: Digital assets of any kind are typically always provided by the client.

Custom design vs a pre-built theme

You may have noticed I have not once brought up the question of whether the funnel is built using custom design or with a pre-built distributed software theme (regardless of funnel software you choose to use).

Honestly, funnels cost money for many reasons far beyond the base styles.

In my 5.5 years of being in this business, I can honestly say that the effectiveness in terms of R.O.I. of a funnel has absolutely nothing to do with the fact that a template was used or the funnel was custom built.

If a funnel consultant knows what he/she is doing, they know that focusing on things like nailing the marketing message, the flow of the offers and offer value itself – are things (among many others) that are way more important than answering the question if a pre-built theme should be used or the funnel should be custom designed.

Pricing remains hard

Are you confused yet? Good.

Pricing is tough. Really. Tough.

People write books on this subject and teach courses about it for different industries and consultants to no end. I’ve written over 3,000 words thus far and I’m not even sure if I’ve done it any justice at all. But bear with me.

Custom funnel prices

Okay, so after all of this information, how much is it really?

Hopefully now you realize it could be… anything.

People are not kidding when they say $1,000 or even $1,000,000 (or more!). Yes, I’ve honestly heard and seen it all!

However, in the interest of being helpful, I think here are some “ballparks” to consider:

Can you get a custom funnel for under $1,000? Yes, but be very careful and know your risk of getting something imperfect is really high.

If you work with a good freelancer who understands funnel marketing, I think ~70% of custom funnels for average folks and average businesses will cost between $3,000 and $15,000.

If you work with a good agency in a medium market, I think ~70% of custom funnels for average folks and average businesses will cost between $8,000 and $75,000.

This difference from freelancers is because larger companies and ‘bigger entrepreneurs’ will naturally gear toward agencies and agencies will be less likely to take on smaller projects if they can take on the bigger ones instead.

That said, some agencies love the small jobs, because they get really good over time at doing quality work for a very particular niche in less time than the competition.

If you work with say the best in business freelancer for doing specific funnels in a specific niche and that’s what he/she is sought after, you’ll probably spend between $10,000 and $105,000+. The freelancer you work with will probably utilize a team of other subcontractors in this scenario, because it’s rare for someone to truly deliver all the things you need running solo. And that freelancer will know exactly what is needed.

If you work with a best in business agency to build something special (regardless of funnel type), you’ll probably spend between $15,000 and $500,000+. Most agencies will self-perform the work, and often times you can expect them to be available for retainer contracts, hosting / maintenance agreements, and other long-term relationship style services included in such a proposal.

It’s also worth noting that in large projects, it’s very common to break them into multiple projects and phase them.

This is very typical with seven-figure clients, and in these scenarios it’s not uncommon for some agencies to have multi-million dollar per year clients, whether billed by project, profit share or retainer, or a combination of all.


Please note: I wrote this post for three audiences:

  1. Clients looking to hire a funnel consultant, and not knowing what to consider when comparing costs.
  2. Funnel consultants that are still trying to wrap their head around pricing.
  3. Me, because my team and I have been building funnels for years, and we’re honestly not even close to having it down.

I hope this has helped you and I apologize if it offended you in any shape or form.

If you have more to add, I’d love to hear more about it in the comments down below.


P.S.

If you are a funnel consultant (or aspiring one) and you’ve loved this article and want to dive even deeper into the concept of pricing, sales and more, check out the Funnel Pro Academy. All the info you could possibly want or need is inside this membership site.

For more info, click here: https://funnelproacademy.com

Neil Patel’s 2019 Marketing Outlook

That day when I walked into the conference room and later on approached the table for the VIP round-up session with Neil Patel, I didn’t know what would hit me… which is, in short, the sheer awesomeness that is Neil Patel.

One of the things that I like the most about him is that he seems so genuine. He does not try to put on a show, nor fake it.

When a person asks him a weird question, he will not try and be nice about it trying to answer the question. Instead, he is going to ask the person to re-frame what they asked and put it in a better context so that it’s understandable to everyone else.

When you sit across from him, you’re able to tell immediately the sheer genius that he has about him. His brain works magic on numbers in particular and marketing in general.

That day, my husband and I sat down at the Affiliate Summit West. Front row. And without lingering too much about who he was or what his companies did, Neil Patel dove straight into his outlook for the marketing world in 2019.

And the outlook didn’t look good.

In fact, we’re facing one of THE most challenging times – ever. And things would only get more… challenging in the future.

You see, what worked in the past did not work anymore right now.

What only worked 12 months ago, does not work anymore for marketers and online business alike.

The curveball is shifting in regards to what is considered to be valuable and of essential importance when it comes to any marketing strategy.

So, what is it?

In short: it’s eyeballs.

Whoever can get the most eyeballs on an offer, wins.

And it’s not necessarily eyeballs in the sense of getting the right eyeballs of your ideal audience – but more, eyeballs in the sense of creating a ‘buzz’ around what you have to offer.

Big brands consistently want to work with companies and influencers that can attract the most eyeballs.

Why? Because chances are the more people talk about your offer, the more chances you’re going to have for the right people to actually see your offer.

Another important aspect that he was stressing on is that digital marketing is going to move into an omni-channel approach.

It’s not enough anymore to learn and specialize in, for example, Facebook Ads, Google AdWords, Social Media, etc. as a traffic generating platform.

With more and more businesses using paid social media advertisement to acquire those ‘eyeballs’ we previously talked about, ad costs will go up.

And it will become more and more important for small businesses, solo-entrepreneurs, freelancers and even medium-sized businesses to become smarter in terms of how they market their products.

How can you keep your marketing budget at bay?

Viewing your digital marketing strategy from an omni-channel approach and becoming well-versed in different platforms.

So, if you want to survive as an entrepreneur and small business owner, you have to adapt AND create such an omni-channel approach.

How do you do this?

Well, if you have mastered Facebook Ads, for example, for driving traffic to your funnel and offering, start looking into understanding different social media platforms and vice versa.

Not only that, if you are only familiar with say one funnel strategy, dive deeper into learning about other creative ways of how you can offer your products and services.

And a few of those creative ways that have converted into most sales and eyeballs for my clients and I over these past 5 years, are exactly what I teach my students inside of my signature program the Funnel PRO Academy :).

A lot of online marketing academies or courses that are currently out there, are only focused on teaching a specific ‘traffic platform’ and only one piece of the puzzle.

But to pull off a funnel launch successfully, there is a whole lot more that goes into it. You need to examine and understand every single piece of the puzzle to put it together into one beautiful whole.

Think about it… how far are you going to be able to take a business in say five years from now if you only know Facebook Ads and nothing else? Particularly, when big businesses are going to have way more money available to acquire customers than you have?

You see where I’m going with this, right?

And it is now that we have to prepare for the ever-changing future of online marketing.

It is NOW that you want to reflect on your current strategy, look at all your numbers and see how you can expand on them going forward.

Should you feel like you need any help and/or would like to join a community of like-minded online entrepreneurs, be sure to check out the Academy.

I know you won’t regret it. The content inside is seriously ah-mazing as a few of our students can confirm…

Link to learn more + to add yourself to the waitlist AND receive a special $200 OFF (only for people that are on the waitlist!) is here: https://funnelproacademy.com/waitlist

Here’s to embracing the changes that are already upon us and creating creative marketing strategies that are going to help our businesses thrive further ;).

Let’s do this,

Cornelia Pauline

THE 10 best conference shoes to wear for female entrepreneurs and professionals

Okay ladybosses, girlbosses, bossbabes and female entrepreneurs en large!

I’m kind of a conference-going veteran. In all honesty, I think I must have been to like 17 conferences this past year alone and can’t even remember to how many I’ve already been this past decade. In short, it’s been a LOT.

Summits, events expos, conferences of ALL sizes and more all around the world.

The one thing I repeatedly keep wondering about though is the shoe choice of some of the female conference goers.

You see, most of the time I can tell which ladies are used to conferences and ‘mean business’ and which ones are ‘conference virgins’ or, there for possible other reasons.

If you mean business and you want to get a LOT done – for goodness sake girl, WEAR COMFY SHOES!!!

Trust me, I know what it feels like to try and prospect a potential client or speak on stage all the while feeling like your front five toes are killing you and all you can think of really is, “I need to get out of these shoes *cry*!”

Each step hurts and towards the end of the day, your toes resemble a bloody battlefield – or, almost. 

Believe me girl, I’ve been there and it ain’t fun.

So, after attending the Affiliate Summit West this past week in the buzzing city that is Las Vegas, I decided to write this quick post on some of THE best conference shoes for us ladies that I’ve found you can wear without having to worry about a thing. AND… while still looking like a true rockstar ;).

This way you can focus on what it is that you do best and rock it throughout the entire conference <3.

So, here we go with our countdown:

Le Sneakers.

Growing up in Europe, I was actually not a fan of the idea of wearing sneakers to any type of professional event. 

My mother – who has helped me birth my sense of fashion – always instilled in my the idea of wearing high heels to professional events!

My mother grew up in the seventies and even though America has seen a huge wave of women fighting for their equality and people in general fighting against their government and norms that have barricaded their day-to-day freedom thus far,…

People in Europe (and especially women in my view) have held on to cultural traditions to still feel some form of control over what had happened only a couple of decades prior in the aftermath of World War 2. 

Regardless, sneakers are going to be one of your BEST friends during any type of conference and are still my go-to shoes far and beyond.

And in case you really don’t like typical sporty-looking pairs, here are some of my favorites that I totally love because they not only look cool and professional but are oh-so-good for ya toes:

ADIDAS

GOLDEN GOOSE

GUCCI

VALENTINO

JOHNSTON & MURHPY

VEJA

PUMA

Le Flat Boots.

Depending on what time of the year your conference is, sneakers work but sometimes, boots might be better if say the conference is during harsh Winter months. 

So, here is a list of my favorite boots and/or booties that I’ve worn to conferences and that have proven to not only be super comfortable but also look professional.

SAM EDELMAN

RAG & BONE

SUDINI ALETTA

And that’s it for my suggestions :)!

Now, you could also wear ballet flats which some of my girlfriends really love wearing to conferences. However and since I personally never wear ballet flats, I have no specific recommendations for you. 

If you have any, do drop a comment down below and let us know! 

Finally, I would refrain from wearing flip flops or open-toe shoes of any kind even though, I have seen those around? Why? Because personally, to me they are not very professional. 

So, keep your toes in the shoes for the conference (especially, since conference rooms can get really cold at times and you don’t want those tiny suckers to get cold) and let them out later when you get to the room or, hit up the pool or Spa for some much needed relaxation. 

If you’ve enjoyed this post be sure to subscribe and I talk to you soon <3. 

Let’s do this!

~ Cornelia Pauline

How the concept of the ‘Upper Limit’ can be dangerous to entrepreneurs’ mindsets

Have you read this book? Oh, you must read it! It is awesome,” one of my entrepreneur friends said to me.

I glanced at the image of the book she sent me over Facebook messenger. It was ‘The Big Leap’ by Gay Hendricks.

Now, I have a love-hate-kinda relationship with this book.

When I first read this book, I truly liked it. I thought it was full of ground-breaking ideas and concepts. I heard about it while listening to one of Marie Forleo’s Youtube videos. I’m a fan of Marie Forleo and so, I trusted her and read the book.

In the video, she talked about the Upper-Limit concept. I was curious to find out what it was all about because at the time, it resonated with me and the consistent bumps I was experiencing in my business development cycle.

In case you haven’t read the book or, you need a reminder regarding the main message of the book, this is it:

According to Gay Hendricks, we each have a set point for happiness, he says, like the setting on a thermostat.

Whenever we reach beyond it, we unconsciously drag ourselves back down to the level we’ve gotten used to. We do this by making a mistake, getting sick, ruining a relationship, or finding another way to sabotage ourselves so we don’t exceed our set point for happiness.

According to Hendricks, we develop this set point based on old scripts from childhood and he refers to it as the “upper limit problem.”

Pretty interesting concept, right?

I am not denying that we are not unconsciously programmed in certain ways that goes back to childhood and adolescent experiences. I am also not denying that we carry a lot of these ‘programs’ with us and they influence the way we react to the world we’ve created around us.

Though, over the past four years of full-time entrepreneurship, I’ve found this book to be dangerous in many ways.

Yep. Pretty strong statement right there and I even feel a bit uncomfortable writing this because I am no Gay Hendricks *yet* but I want to explain to you why I – as an entrepreneur and business owner – think that the main message of the book is dangerous.

To explain this further, let’s dive into some truths about human psychology and our inner make up.

Our believes shape our worldview.

Yes? I think we can all agree with that statement..

Yes? I think we can all agree with that statement..

Now, if your belief shapes your worldview, then what you think not only about yourself but the world will shape your reality.

If I buy into this idea that is outlined in the book that to get to each NEXT level in my personal development, I am faced with hitting and working through some form of crushing Upper Limit – it will hold me back.

Heck, I’ve found myself simply finding excuses and explaining certain situations away by referring to them as, “Oh well, this is just my upper limit showing up so I will just have to take this slow. Etc.

What is worse is that I was even expecting to hit a block and either i.e. get physically sick or self-sabotage myself!

At every stage of my entrepreneurial journey that is.

How dangerous is that?

And not only that, I started to believe that growth has to be correlated with pain.

Don’t get me wrong. Sometimes, experiencing pain is essential to grow in specific areas. A great example for this would be going to the gym and reaching a certain body goal. That typically is connected with some form of muscle pain.

Though, if you expect that you are going to experience Upper Limits when you move through professional, business and life stages, you can also take this believe as an excuse NOT to act BECAUSE you know you will experience pain. And we humans, generally try to avoid pain.

Do you see where I am going with this?

Yes, there are many helpful passages in the book. It’s a well-written book, I am not going to negate that and you can certainly take some insightful concepts away from it.

But it is equally important to stress that how you are digesting the context of the book could be potentially dangerous to your self-development.

It can have a negative affect on your mindset based on how you choose to view and integrate the knowledge shared in the book into your overall believe system (as was the case for me).

Personally, I choose to believe that growth is something beautiful and even though, it always requires effort – which can be painful at times – it is also equally connected with joy AND fun.

My intention with this article is to help you understand that you can break through the regular ‘entrepreneur development cycle’ that consists of:

Take focused action.

See yourself making some progress.

Dream bigger.

Then, have yourself freak out internally about the progress you are making.

Self-sabotage.

End up where you started (or just a tiny bit further ahead).

THIS. IS. EXHAUSTING.

Let’s change this life-cycle and stop with the self-sabotaging already!

You are what you believe.

Choose to believe something else, something that will serve you better.

Believe in perfect timing <3.

In fact, believe that YOU have perfect timing. Always. And grow at a pace that feels right for you without ever ‘hitting’ any upper limits ever again.

How so?

Because whatever progress you are experiencing right now or, will experience in the future, YOU HAVE BEEN MADE FOR THIS.

As a result, this completely deflects and negates the concept of upper limits.

What’s your take on this? Would love to know in the comments down below <3.

P.S. You might also enjoy: https://corneliapauline.com/2018/02/14/people-succeed-life-others-dont/

The 10 Best Books Every Girl Boss Should Have on Her Shelf

This one thing you probably don’t know about me yet – unless you watch my Instagram Stories where quite occasionally, I post sections of the books I’m currently reading.

And boy, I usually don’t just read one book at a time. I have 2 or 3 that I rotate around based on my mood and needs that day.

My husband Ben constantly makes fun of me because of that. He’s more a one-book-at-a-time-kinda-guy. Oh well, opposites attract, right :)? But what we do have in common is our love for reading.

Lately, I’ve found a few books that especially resonated with me as a female entrepreneur, a girl boss so to speak. And I wanted to share them with you.

Dream Wedding (1)

My little Maltese-Dachshund mix, Lucky, is curled up next to me right now as I’m writing this. His head is resting on the book I’ve just put aside when inspiration hit to write this article.

So, let’s get to it. Are you ready? Here we go…

These are some of my most life-changing, perspective-shifting, inspirational books I’ve read this past year:

The 10 Best Books Every Girl Boss Should Have on Her Shelf

Girl, Wash Your Face by Rachel Hollis – I’ve rarely read a book that felt so authentic. Rachel truly uncovers some raw and rather unspoken aspects of being a successful female business owner AND mother AND wife AND speaker AND… I still don’t know how she juggles everything. You will find yourself laughing out loud, nodding profusely and maybe even crying.

Captivate : The Science Of Succeeding With People by Vanessa Van Edwards – This book is like the bible for introverts and recovering (or still in the process) recovering awkward people… aka me :). Really. I wish I would have discovered this book YEARS ago. It would have helped me SO much in my business. Can you feel my passion for this book through this paragraph. Go get it now here.

Becoming  by Michelle Obama – Need I explain why you should check out this book? It’s truly inspirational from a smart, inspirational woman. I think you’ll love it as much as I did.

Dare To Lead by Brene Brown – How to step up and lead with heart. Mrs Brene Brown is one of those people on my list of people I must meet in my lifetime :). She’s that good and I love her humor and flair that she always injects her writing with. This book is best read with a nice glass of Rose and some music on in the background.

Start Where You Are by Meera Lee Patel – Every answer is inside of you. I personally truly believe that. If you feel stuck right now or confused or like you’ve hit a plateau, this book is for you. I’ve felt this way a LOT a few months ago and the thoughtful journaling prompts inside this book (which, okay, is more like a journal but still) have helped me find clarity with a lot of things.

Financial Intelligence by Karen Berman – If you are or want to become a business owner and have not graduated with a business diploma where you’ve probably learned all about this stuff (I wouldn’t know since my degree is in Diplomacy and Intercultural studies ^^), you need to read this book. Yes, finances are not sexy but they can AND should be. You will thank me later once your company is close to hitting seven or eight figures that I made you read this book ;).

Writing For Bliss by Diana Raab – Have you ever heard this saying that stories sell? Yes? Then you need to go read this book now. Period.

Train Your Brain: How To Build A Million Dollar Business In Record Time by Dana Wilde – Mindset is everything, darling. It truly is. It can make or break your success, regardless of how good you are at what it is you are doing or how advanced your product is. If you want to succeed you need to train your mindset like a muscle. This book will guide you in how to do this.

Big Magic by Elizabeth Gilbert – A must read for any girl boss that is looking to live a successful, creative life.

Influencer: Building Your Personal Brand In The Age Of Social Media by Brittany Hennessy – If you are a fan of content creation businesses and want to make a name for yourself as the brand, this book is for you. It’s your blueprint for how to manage AND monetize your influence online.

FOR REALS

The thing is though… this list can seem really overwhelming to some of you, especially if you’re not a big reader. Don’t get me wrong, I feel like there is so much wisdom to be gained from reading books. You are essentially getting access to the experience someone has made for years and what they have learned from it. To me, there’s true value in that.

Regardless, I don’t want this list to hold you back from taking action NOW. You probably already know the next step that you need to be taking to get some momentum going. So, go ahead and take that step now. Read those above books along the way whenever you have time and for continuing education.

And don’t forget, these are all just perspectives of one person’s life and that person’s experiences. If something does not feel like it aligns with how you feel and it just does not seem to make sense for you, disregard it – regardless, of who wrote it. Even me!

You want to be forging your own path. Trust yourself the most whenever you get that feeling… you know which one I’m talking about ;).

And finally, and for fun…

HOLIDAY READS FOR THE BUSY GIRL BOSS TO RELAX

Do you remember how I mentioned I read 2 or 3 books at a time? Well, one of them is ALWAYS a fiction book (in addition to all the non-fiction books I read).

I just love stories. Heck, I’m totally addicted to them and I think that even a smart business person can learn a lot from reading popular and not so popular fiction books.

It’s about learning and understanding what moves people. Often times, the things that move us span entire continents and touch peoples hearts, regardless of gender or ethnicity.

So, I want to encourage you to not forget how fun reading can be! I often times stare at a computer sooo long that I am excited to get away from it and I do this with one heck of a good fiction book. Without further ado, here are my faves…

  1. The Nightingale by Kristin Hannah (looove her writing style and character development!)
  2. The Kiss Quotient by Helen Hoang (juicy. did I already say juicy hehe)
  3. Love And Gelato by Jenna Evans Welch (who doesn’t love gelato, right?)
  4. Tell Me Three Things by Julie Buxbaum (simply a cute novel)
  5. Shelter In Place by Nora Roberts (for those who love mystery and suspense)

One final tip before I go, those educational non-fiction books? Try them out on Audible. I love listening to an audiobook while doing my morning workout.

And from one Girlboss to another – tell me – what books have you been loving this year that I should add to this list? What books are you excited about that are being released in 2019?

P.s. Enjoyed this article? You might also like this post: https://corneliapauline.com/2018/10/11/the-ultimate-entrepreneurs-toolkit/