What’s Better: Clients or A Cool Website?

If you don't have enough paying clients & you're tweaking your website to try and fix that problem, read this! PeggieArvidson.com

Palmists, Please!

I feel like I should just drop the mic right here, because when I call it like it is, you see that having clients and not just any clients, but clients that pay you for your amazing service, is a crap-ton more awesome than a cool website. And what’s cool and chic and necessary for your website today is likely to be obsolete in a year or six months, so make sure you’ve got cash coming in to keep up with the changes you’ll want to make.

Yes, in a perfect world you’ll have both. But unless you’ve got a trust fund or a sugar daddy/mama the odds are you’re spending way too much time worrying about your website, your tag line and your colors for your business card than you should.

If working on those things lights you up and makes you happy, maybe you should quit reading hands and take up a career in design.  If you want to  make a career out of reading hands and serving your clients, then, trust me, it’s time to let that stuff go.

Now you can look around my website and see for sure I’m not wild and crazy on the “make it perfect or pretty” front, right? Yes. I would like it to be spiffier and prettier, and I have a whole mock up story board ready to go for the designer I’ve selected, once I’ve got the cash in the bank and ready to go.

In the meantime, I focus on what I do best – serving my customers and audience with content that is useful and easy to understand.  I also walk my talk and avoid going into debt for something I’m going to change a few dozen more times in the lifetime of this business.

Small business owners have to make wise choices on where they re-invest their profits. That’s a topic for another post, but for now, let’s just say serving customers and creating tools that you can use to build your palmistry profits is where I’m spending my time and money right now.

But the Gurus Say I HAVE to…

Oh yes, there are a large number of (mostly internet marketing) professionals who will insist you need a pretty website, and a perfect tagline that captures the entire essence of YOU so there is no need for anyone to even talk to you, or read your content or check your credentials before they hire you.

Step back and look at who those pros are. Yep, they are people who can teach you how to craft your marketing message. Often a piece of their income is tied to referring you to their favorite web designers, copy writers and more. That’s honest to goodness affiliate income. And there’s nothing wrong with them getting paid for referring you to quality professionals who do great work.

They are so good at convincing you that you cannot be in business without a pretty website or tagline (or any number of bells and whistles) that you believe them. That, my brilliant palmist friend, is genius marketing.

It seems to me that so many specialty entrepreneurs (like you and me) have begun putting the cart before the horse. That’s no way to get where you’re going!

So, which would you rather have: a cool website, a catchy tag line and logo or paying clients?

I know it seem so very important right now. But it’s not. I promise you this — you can invest in your business however you want and take all the marketing classes in the world that promise you’ll have a 7 figure business after you have enough paying clients to pay for them.

Onto the elephant in the den —

What’s keeping you from booking clients?

No matter what you want to believe, it’s not because your marketing materials aren’t up to snuff.

The thing that’s keeping you client-free or under-utilized is YOU. (ouch!)

I promise if we were face to face right now I’d look you in your eyes and assure you that you are not bad or worthless or in any way should feel ashamed, it’s just that you’re scared, and you’re working yourself up into a lather about marketing materials so you can avoid digging in and facing that fear.

Confession time – I spent more than two years believing that the only reason I was broke was because I didn’t a) have the right coach, b) have the right font on my website and c) do enough webinars.

I invested time (which I had too much of) and money (which I had very little of) in classes and more certifications and read every book and resource I could get my hands on to find the key to perfecting my marketing. Every time I turned around I was trying to re-define and hone in on my “Perfect” client so that I could speak her language and create enticements to get her to hire me.

Here’s what I learned:

  • I had no idea who or what made up my perfect client until I worked with hundreds of clients! Until I started to really work with people and help them see results, I really was overwhelmed by all the things I wanted to help people do and be.
  • Once I had a few thousand hands read and about a hundred coaching clients I started to see where I had the most fun, which clients made me happy and what topics I really enjoyed working on with them.
  • While my brand of pragmatic palmistry presumably could help everyone, I don’t want to work with everyone, nor do I care to focus on every topic that could trigger people to come to me.
  • My website had nothing to do with any of it.

Deciding who I wanted to serve and what I wanted to offer them was the first step on my journey to putting the horse before the cart. It’s still a work in progress (just like my attachment to clichés), but I didn’t let the fact that I didn’t know all the answers to the “marketing guru questions” stop me.

I’m hoping this post has you thinking about what you want more: a pretty website or a slew of happy customers, and that you’ve started generating some thoughts and actions you can take right now to book those clients.

Want to talk more about marketing? Want to figure out how to get out there and meet your first dozen clients? Then make sure you’re subscribed to the Profitable Palmist newsletter so you’ll get all the how-tos, templates and guides created to help you build your bottom line and your heart line with your palmistry business!

 

How to Use Social Media for Mystics

Success Tools Toolbox Succeeding Goal Skills

I’m a big believer in community, “tribe,” authenticity and being you in business. If you’ve followed me for any length of time you have figured out that there’s not a huge defining line between “Public Pragmatic Palmist Peggie” and “Personal Peggie.” It’s just easier that way for me.

I have a relatively long head-line. It’s not as long as the one most of my clients have, but it’s long enough combined with my massive Air sign stuff in my astrological chart that I like to think things out. Scratch that. I like to OVERTHINK things.  I’m big on reading books, filling out templates and generally trying out all the bells and whistles before I go live with most things. This can cause a great deal of frustration in implementation.  I waffle much of the time, because the spiritual-go-with-the-flow persona wants to chill and the Type-A, super-stiff-thumb, Success Life purpose persona wants to DO! and Benchmark and LAUNCH!!!

When I get all zenned out and tell you, “just be you” I mean it.  But I know it’s not necessarily helpful for you when I tell you to do that. 

Today I’m zooming in a little on MY personal Social Media zeitgeist.  This isn’t meant to be one of those “If you do these 10 things you’ll be successful posts” but rather a brief glimpse into what’s worked and not worked in my land.  A couple of caveats: 1) I’ve been involved/using social media in some way or form since at least 2006, possibly longer. I’ve tried and used some things that aren’t really out there anymore (Plurk?! Anyone??); 2) I don’t have kids so I’m cool with having my life be an open book – there is no backlash or safety issues for them to worry about; and 3) I have worked for myself longer than I have been on Social Media – again, no backlash worries from that realm.

Over the years there have been lots of experts and gurus telling you exactly what you should do to make social media work for  you and your business. Some of these rules are logical and make good sense (be yourself!) and some of them were useful once but not so much anymore (make yourself an expert!) and some of them just didn’t ever jive with me (using bots and such to gain followers).

In the current climate pretty much anything goes but still, you see people mostly following the herd. There were more renegades in the early adapter years – no one had any real rules or understanding of how to monetize or strategically use social media, so we all just went out and tried what occurred to us. Then there were strategists and experts and everyone became the same.

Now though you get to try on what works for you and keep going. Run with what works and run the other way from whatever doesn’t.  It doesn’t matter what your brother or Uncle or even your beloved coach says if you don’t have a personality or business like theirs.

Here’s a breakdown from my life/business:

Annually

I take a look at what worked last year and plan what I’d like to change/improve/ramp up in the coming year.  In a perfect world this starts in October, but realistically it’s usually sometime around Thanksgiving. I fine tune it between Christmas and New Years.  I look at the astrological calendar and peek into what’s happening in my own chart so I can highlight some good times to get this review and planning done.  I also use the upcoming year’s astrological outlook (mostly new moons and Merc retro for me) to highlight anything that I might want to note as potentially wonky or potentially propitious.

Now that I’ve got my goals and benchmarks in hand I move onto

Monthly

At the beginning of each month I note my current stats (number of followers, likes, shares, etc) that I’ve decided to track in my annual plan and write out my goals. I use a bullet journal .  After years of buying all the cool, pretty, celebrity touted planner systems in the world, I finally decided to go this route. It’s been almost a year with my BuJo and I’m happy about it.

As I plan the month I highlight any gifts or events I want to share and promote for my peeps on the social media scene. Right now I focus on Facebook and Instagram. In the future I forsee a thrust in the YouTube and Podcast arena.  Things that I’d include in this monthly list would be short subject headers to remind me what I wanted to write about/talk about/share and preferred time frames.

Of course if I have new programs, classes or services coming up, I want to have my social media presence bring those topics up weeks and often months prior to the big ‘reveal.’ This way you get to be part of watching things happen on my end. I’m about transparency but I don’t want to bore you with every little nuance of what happens in my brain. (If I’m wrong, and you really want that, go ahead and let me know in the comments.)

Weekly

Now I’m crafting posts or pictures for the week. If I have theme I’m working on (often for Instagram, not so much here or on Facebook where I like to riff on whatever is on  my heart at a given point in time) I’ll take those pictures, draft up some copy and poke around looking for inspiration and keywords that might help me be useful to you.

Once a week I invite my instagram followers to join me on Facebook and I invite my personal Facebook followers to come over and like my business page.  I also invite each of those groups to visit me here on the website and sign up for the newsletter. I don’t have a super opt-in present for people to join the newsletter and sometimes I feel badly about that, but not enough to make it a priority just yet.  (lesson for you – go with what you got now! It’s never going to be perfect or follow all the rules. I’m still getting new subscribers each week, maybe not as many looky-loos who just want to compare my free thing to the free thing they want to create, which is okay by me).

During the week I research topics that you are interested in and find answers to questions that have been on my mind about business, about spirituality and about making money and healing relationships. I note good resources and save them to my evernote app so that I can share them in a round up or on one of my pages as appropriate.

I also listen to podcasts throughout the week on topics related to business, entrepreneurs, creativity, yarn, craft businesses, sales and metaphysics. Sometimes I toss in a few comedy related shows and health shows. Again, anything that I find useful for y’all, I’ll save to evernote and bring out when it’s useful for you.

I then put those topics into

Daily

When the new week begins I layout the daily plans. I like to  have structure, but not so much that I can’t change my mind (I’m like the wind!) once in a while. Still the tasks go on my daily assignments and I commit to following through.

I like to sleep til at least 9:30 most mornings so I do try to get my Instagram posting done as soon as I’ve had some coffee. Then I pop onto Facebook land and take a look around. I note any of my posts that have been getting some action and also poke around and see what my friends and colleagues are doing. I like to see what they’re interested in and commenting on.  I also spend at least an hour in the morning commenting where I have something worthwhile to share (I avoid simply saying, “Good job” because who really cares?) and also private messaging friends and colleagues with info that may be of use to what they’ve shared on their wall or in private.  I’m big on transparency, but I don’t have to always show up publicly to say “HEY LOOK AT ME BEING THE EXPERT HERE” because ultimately, what I want to do is be useful.  If I can be useful I check with my gut to find out the best way to do it and then do it.

I also have my intagram account set to automatically post to Facebook (my personal page), Twitter and Tumblr. These are currently the only posts I have on Twitter an Tumblr but they do keep me there and I may expand on those hubs in coming  years.

I make the rounds of each of my Facebook hubs daily. Sometimes I share an anecdote, sometimes a meme and sometimes a post or a riff on what’s in my head at any given moment. I’ve found that showing up at least once a day on my page is important. When I don’t show up, no one else does either. When I show up 3-5 times a day on my page, I get a greater response, attract more followers and generally hit my targets more quickly. In this case I’m talking about my business page.

Multiple times a day I share things on my personal page on Facebook. If it’s appropriate I’ll also cross post to a group I’m in or my business page. As I said in the beginning, I try to keep things pretty transparent. “I yam who I yam” to quote Popeye. Still not everyone on my personal page gives a hoot about my palmistry and spiritual musings.

I spend at least one day a week writing newsletters, updating autoresponders, tweaking web-pages and writing posts for the blog.

 

It may seem like a great deal of work, but this is my full time job. I schedule my on-line time just as I schedule time with my clients and time with my own coach. It’s important for me and my business because I can trace at least 40% of my income each month to my on-line efforts. That’s enough to dedicate at least 40% of my time to putting this together.

In the future I’ll be experimenting with some new venues and if one of them seems better suited than Facebook for you and the rest of my perfect peeps, I’ll likely shift there. For now, it’s a great place and I’m enjoying the opportunity to connect.

 

I want to reiterate, this in no-way is a post about what you “have to do” or even should do to build your social media presence. It’s a simple look at a breakdown of my process. I’m hoping it’s useful for you!

 

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Helping Hand: Helping Your Perfect People Find You

Multi Ethnic People Holding The Word Community

I get lots of questions about how I find clients. In fact, when I meet a new person and they ask what I do about the third thing they ask is “Wow, but how do you find clients?”  Or more direct questions like, “But, you can’t make a living doing that, can you?”

So many women are longing to ditch the shoulds and start living their life on their own terms, but they are afraid they won’t be able to make their bottom line add up.  I get it. In fact, just six years ago I wasn’t making ends meet, at all. That’s a story for another post, and one that I shared recently with my Facebook peeps, but now I’d like to help you find your perfect people so they can help you make a living doing what you love.

When I say your Perfect People: it’s your COMMUNITY.

First, your perfect people usually are NOT a demographic or a caricature. It’s a good idea to start with a sketch of that type, but it’s more important to dig in to the heart of what makes them tick.  See, they could be all ages under the sun, work in stodgy corporate environments and out in the wilds of  nature, but still long for the same thing.  That thing they long for, that energy they bring into the world? That’s what makes them your perfect people.

Next, perfect people want to work with you. They are happy to invest in your solutions and results and they adore you. They really love the way you get them and they love telling their friends all about you. There is  no hemming or hawing with budgets or comparisons. They just get you. Finally, they may not always buy everything, but they always tell their friends about you.  They appreciate you as much as you appreciate them.

Your perfect people are the doorway to you earning your worth and being able to support yourself.

Contrary to “internet guru” belief, you don’t need a million followers or 10,000 likes to make enough to support yourself.  You simply need a few hundred people who are on board your train and are willing to invite others onto the ride.  This isn’t about targeting or snaring or capturing anyone – it’s about being real.

If you’ve been in business for yourself for longer than 10 minutes, you know that there is no way in the universe that you’re going to go from $0 to $50K in a week. Not if you don’t have money to spend and not if you don’t have any people supporting you.

Building your business, particularly in a lesser known industry like tarot, astrology, palmistry, reiki or angel readings requires you to have patience.  Isn’t it funny how many of us “spiritual-preneurs” have no patience for the time-space continuum on Earth? 

I have no patience. I have slightly more patience now than I did 11 years ago when I started this business.  Which means, I still want my results immediately, or yesterday – but I’m more willing to accept that it’s going to take the time it takes so I may as well show up with a good attitude and be open to the possibilities.  While I’m open to miracles, I still like to work a plan.  If you want a plan, here’s some ways to build your relationship with your perfect people.  Start today and keep doing something to nurture those relationships every day and see what happens in a month, and six months and a decade.  I guarantee you that consistently showing up every day will reap rewards. No, it’s not sexy or overnight, but tomorrow will be more profitable than today and so on.

1. Find a  home on the internet that you want to nurture your relationships. You may say you hate the computer or the internet or social media, but the world doesn’t. Even the world of people who say they hate it show up on Facebook or Twitter or Instagram or LinkedIn or whatever other newfangled tools there are out there. Give yourself some time to explore the various options, do this by asking people who are on your team (best clients, colleagues, others who like what you do) what they like and don’t like on social media. Try out the various platforms for a little while and then pick one to start.  Use that place as your hub. Make it comfy like your home base. Invite people in, greet them when they show up and just generally be YOU but the best version of you there.  Build that space up over time.   Do one thing each day (or each business day) to enhance the experience for yourself and your guests. For me, that hub is The Pragmatic Palmist on Facebook. I have other smaller niche sights on Facebook because my perfect people by and large love and use that space. Some of my clients have similar vibrant hubs on LinkedIn, Periscope and Instagram. In fact, I love Instagram – there aren’t many professional hand analysts there so it’s been a boost to my bottom line of late.

2. Go out and Network. In your community.  Yes, yes, I know you’re interested in a lifestyle, geographically independent business. I hear ya. We’re moving in a year and I’m grateful that I have clients all over the world. Some of whom I connected with through people I met in my own backyard here in Virginia. Find one or two networking groups that you gel with and show up, be active and build relationships.  Being active in your community includes formal networking groups (just google “networking groups in ___” to find a few dozen even in you tiny community), of course.  But community groups can also include activity related meetups, social groups, alumnae/alumni groups and more.  Whether you like dog-parks with your pug or knitting and wine with gal pals, you’ll find a place to go.  Getting out of your house and away from your computer is a great way to build your network.  You’re going to expand your world, not to get someone to hire you – be you and the perfect people will find you. Don’t be shy about sharing your work, but don’t make it the central focus either.  Just be you.

3. Write some articles. These are things you can do in your local community and  your virtual community. I’ve been happily writing a column for our local Regional paper for more than 7 years. In exchange for writing my column I receive a quarter page ad and a little bio-blurb the end of my column. Over the years I’ve booked dozens of clients and received even more referrals, just from showing up and writing a monthly column on topics of interest to me. Yes, I do like writing, but not all my columns are stellar or perfect, but they are all a reflection of me. The columns that are more “me” than formal or perfect are the ones where I get the most calls and referrals.  Even though it’s a local publication, I’ve actually booked a number of out of town clients who happened to be in town on vacation and read the article! Some of them even months after the original date of publication.

4. Teach a class. Is there a local community center where you can offer a low-fee class to share your information with others? If you make your class user-friendly and open to all who are interested, you’ll be able to share your wisdom with others who are curious. A class is a great opportunity to meet new people, answer commonly heard questions and engage your community in a face-to-face way. See if you can partner up with a local massage therapist or yoga studio who may love to offer your classes to their audience in exchange for you introducing their space to your audience! One of the best ways to find places to teach is to ask the people you meet in your community for classroom ideas! Again, be you and enjoy what happens.

5. Use the power of the internet! Once again you can use the tools available to you through modern technology to expand your reach. Blogging, podcasting, webinars and teleclasses are still prominent ways to expand your community. You can teach classes, interview experts or celebrities, give step-by-step instructions and more on the internet. The power of this medium is awesome – people all over the world will be able to find you at all hours of the day and night.

6. Access your hard-wiring. Call it your purpose or soul’s navigation system, but you’re a spiritual being with heartfelt beliefs and visions and dreams. Your Perfect People are often quite similar to you. If you’ve had a hand reading, you can bring your gifts into play or if you have a handle on your life purpose and your life lessons, let them help guide you to places and message

 

These are five simple ways that you can get started now.  Pick one and run with it for at least 6 weeks so you can get a feel for the process. Giving yourself ONE instead of five is important – you want to avoid overwhelm and watch your progress instead of getting caught up in perfectionism or overwhelm.  Watch your progress from week 1 to week 6 and give yourself a pat on the back for sticking to it.  Sticking to it is the biggest differential between those who “make it” and those who don’t.