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Andy Black

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Posted by @eekern on Mar 23, 2016:
it is a shame you don`t have your own blog..

This has been stuck in my brain for the last two years... like a wee splinter in my mind.

So I finally got round to creating a blog this year.



# WHY?

I like writing and I need to write to get stuff out of my head lest I get all clogged up and "stuck".

The main purpose is to have somewhere I can post content without spamming the forum. I've deliberately disabled comments because I want to post and keep going. Conversations are for forums I think, not for blogs.

Apart from helping me gather all my thoughts in one place that I can organise and reorganise to my hearts content, it might help other folks... hence putting it online and not just leaving it in my own private Basecamp project.



# WHY NOW?

I've a personal branded website that I couldn't get fully behind. It was a mixture of a "gun-for-hire" site and a blog.

I finally realised why I couldn't get behind it - I don't want prospects reading about how I'm growing my business. I want them to read about how they can grow their own business.

Duh.



# HOW?

I'm using Thrivethemes (Luxe theme).

I've setup an opt-in form and a GetResponse list. Only about 3 subscribers at the moment (hi guys!).

I want to get emails when someone subscribes so I can reach out to them and find out more about why they subscribed and what I can help them with. Because I'm using the GetResponse API integrated with Thriveleads I can't get this, so I'll be changing the opt-in form to being a GetResponse one.

As usual, I'm NOT setting up an autoresponder yet till I've sent personal emails first. I want to do things by hand first so I know what they heck to automate anyway.


Lots of little things to fix, but I'm not letting them slow me down. I've been trying to post once a day for January - not because I want a daily blog, but because I want to get the process down pat.


Posts are currently a mix of:
  • Content in TFLF that surface in my feed when someone "likes" them.
  • Replies I send to my team that I think might help others.
  • Other posts I've made in Facebook groups and Discord chats.
  • Emails and messages I send to folks.
I'll port over all the older (non-AdWords) posts from my gun-for-hire site. I've no idea how many there are actually, but it should be a simple thing for a Wordpress techie.

I'm sure the content will evolve over time as I find a "blogging" voice ... and I'm curious if it will be different from a "forum" voice?


# OBVIOUS TO-DOS

Create a more compelling reason to opt-in to the email list, but "Sign up for latest news and updates" will do for now.


Screenshot of the homepage for posterity:
upload_2018-1-22_0-0-52.png
 

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Eleven

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Congrats on launching! I have several questions after checking out your site:
  1. Who is your target audience? What problem do you want to help them solve? Neither was really clear to me when I first landed on your site. I understand that you're trying to get a sense for this by the emails you receive, which is a great approach, but I'm guessing you can narrow it down a bit.
  2. Why should I subscribe with email? Unless I know you personally or have some idea of what I'm getting in return, I'm not going to give up my email. Considering adding some sort of opt-in givaway related to your audience and what they're trying to solve. I know you mentioned this, but it could be as easy as updating the copy in the form.
  3. What's your end goal here? There's definitely something to be said for building an audience, but a lot of bloggers I know started writing first and hoped to monetize later. After dozens or hundreds of posts, they still make close to zero from their site. Don't get stuck in this situation.
 
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Andy Black

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Thanks for checking it out @Eleven, and for your feedback/questions.

Who is your target audience? What problem do you want to help them solve? Neither was really clear to me when I first landed on your site. I understand that you're trying to get a sense for this by the emails you receive, which is a great approach, but I'm guessing you can narrow it down a bit.
It's not clear on the site yet because it's not clear in my head. I'll contact people who signup and find out more about them.

Why should I subscribe with email? Unless I know you personally or have some idea of what I'm getting in return, I'm not going to give up my email. Considering adding some sort of opt-in givaway related to your audience and what they're trying to solve. I know you mentioned this, but it could be as easy as updating the copy in the form.
At this stage, I only want people subscribing who already know me and *want* to get updates. They're the ones keenest, and I'd like to find out why. What do they have in common? What problems have I already been helping them with? What content do they want more of and less of?

In a way, the less enticing the opt-in, the more motivated the person who subscribes. Obviously not ideal, but I'll roll with it for now.

What's your end goal here? There's definitely something to be said for building an audience, but a lot of bloggers I know started writing first and hoped to monetize later. After dozens or hundreds of posts, they still make close to zero from their site. Don't get stuck in this situation.
I just want somewhere I can post content without worrying that it's not appropriate for TFLF, for my gun-for-hire site, for a forum I've built, for any agency sites I build, etc.

If it helps people then great. If no-one reads it then that's ok too. "I'm doing it anyway." (<-- one of my favourite lines). In fact, I've already been writing for years... Every . Single . Day.

I've posted 5,500+ times in TFLF and every now and then someone will like one and it pops up on my radar again. I might have spent half-an-hour writing it. I'd like to use those as the bones of articles and have somewhere to house as they pop up.


I want this to go on the back-burner. It will just be the sand between the rocks in my day.
 

Eleven

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At this stage, I only want people subscribing who already know me and *want* to get updates. They're the ones keenest, and I'd like to find out why. What do they have in common? What problems have I already been helping them with? What content do they want more of and less of?

In a way, the less enticing the opt-in, the more motivated the person who subscribes. Obviously not ideal, but I'll roll with it for now.

I see what you mean now. Definitely a different approach than most take, but I can see the value in that.

I want this to go on the back-burner. It will just be the sand between the rocks in my day.

Cool, makes sense for this approach. Thanks for taking the time to respond.
 
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Andy Black

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I see what you mean now. Definitely a different approach than most take, but I can see the value in that.



Cool, makes sense for this approach. Thanks for taking the time to respond.
Thank *you* for checking the blog out, and for your input.

I started this thread because I figured I was doing it a bit different from how others would, and maybe we could all learn from that.

This is an "Infinity Project" for me, as I write about here:
 
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Andy Black

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Hmmm... I've not updated this thread or the blog in a couple of months.

I'd lost interest in this domain because it had the word "freelance" in the title and I don't consider myself a freelancer anymore. However, I've just realised how many people in here want to go freelancing or are freelancing and want to move beyond.

Maybe I'll keep it going and start adding more content to it?

First thing is to check the subscribe form thing works. I moved from GetResponse to ActiveCampaign a few weeks back (not that I've sent any emails).
 
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Andy Black

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First thing is to check the subscribe form thing works. I moved from GetResponse to ActiveCampaign a few weeks back (not that I've sent any emails).
Ha. Someone just subscribed and sent me screenshots showing some errors. Thanks man.
 
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Andy Black

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Engage your market in hand-to-hand combat!


Someone just signed up to the email list on the blog today. I've still got the wishy washy "Signup to get the latest news".

I do NOT have an automated email welcome go out.

I send people a personal email instead.

Example this evening:






See that quote in my signature:

“Never worry about numbers. Help one person at a time, and always start with the person nearest you.”
(Mother Theresa)
 

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Hi Andy, any updates on the project? I liked your Infinity Project thread/post and am thinking of doing a similar project of my own.
 
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Andy Black

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Hi Andy, any updates on the project? I liked your Infinity Project thread/post and am thinking of doing a similar project of my own.
Gosh. I forgot I had this thread. I like the name of this blog/brand. It’s just not high enough priority for me to update the blog. Instead, I’ve been updating my paid email newsletter, which I’ve been really enjoying. I know a dozen or so people are following/reading, and I know it’s private (or at least not indexed by Google).

I’ll come back to this later, maybe to put a few pillar articles on the site, and have an optin for a 7-day email course or something... that may lead to the paid email newsletter or some course(es).

I still like the concept of an Infinity Project and have been trying things on for size to find mine. The paid email newsletter seems to be it at the moment.
 

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