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EXECUTION Value First and Foremost

Andy Daniels

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My dad wanted to know why I'm not comfortable and content with my current job situation. It's a fair question, because to the eyes of a slowlaner, I have the perfect setup;

  • Job on a college campus helping students succeed
  • Free apartment as a job perk, no rent
  • Free meal plan as a job perk, no need to buy groceries
  • No utility bills, all paid
Not bad right?


And honestly, it really is a great setup. Just one thing...


I have Fastlane goals


I don't want to get comfortable with my current situation, because it's not my end goal. I tried telling my dad that I have goals of only working if I want to work, not work because I needed to.

The best part:

He told me "only celebrities and like 10 other people get to live that life, Andy. The rest of us have to work until we're 65. You have to be crazy rich to make that work".


As wrong as that statement is, and it IS wrong, I feel bad. I really do. Both my mom and dad are extremely hard workers. I would definitely not be here in this forum without them, they've given me everything.

But that statement: The rest of us

Lumped "Us" all into one category: AVERAGE

Yes my parents are hard workers, but it was by choice. Just like every other person, we all have a choice over the kind of life we want to live.



So in the end, I really do need to thank my dad. I now have a HUGE motivator to grow and scale my business into a value-generating, well oiled mega-machine...

To prove him wrong.

Disclaimer: I love my dad. He's great. He's just a slowlaner, he doesn't understand.


So, thank you Dad. I honestly can't wait to buy you that Porsche you've always wanted.

Here I start my execution thread, and post updates so this amazing forum can help hold me accountable.

--------------------------------------------------------------

To Summarize:

I came across @Sean Marshall's awesome thread on how to start your own digital marketing agency, and I was absolutely amazed.

Providing businesses valuable services to improve their sales and leads through online methods!? AND I can outsource a lot of the work once I build the systems!?

Heck yea, I'm in.

  • I've got my website about halfway built. I've been working my way through the @Andy Black AdWords Course, in order to drive some warm leads my way. Once the site is built and optimized, I'll start to rank it for some good long-tail keywords. My plan is to essentially use my own site (ranked on the first page eventually) as proof of my results to potential clients. That way, they've got the proof right in front of them.

  • I've noticed a lot of my target market likes to hang out at breweries after work (I used to work at a brewery), and I got to know them, and got to know what they respond positively to. Here's what I've come to find:
    • My target market likes beer, and socializing with fellow industry folk
    • They like to be lazy (i.e. provide them a convenient and easy solution)
So, my not-so-crazy idea is to host an "Industry Digital Marketing Mixer" at a brewery! Put them in a comfortable environment, and present some valuable and actionable ways that they can improve their online presence, while enjoying delicious (free) beer!

I'm planning to email the President of their industry association next week and discuss the idea. My guess is they will be all over it. My goal isn't to be too "salesy", just passing on good information that they can use themselves! But, if they are too lazy, why don't I go ahead and help you out with that? ;)


  • I'm using a combination of techniques to get some warm leads in my pipeline. I tried out the tactic shared by @Johnny boy , and dropped some voicemails into local businesses I found that have no website. First round, I got 16 (out of 100) delivered voicemails, and 84 unsuccessful deliveries (yikes). 2 people called me! And both said no... But hey! That's the process folks. Most of my market barely has proper voicemail set up, how do you think their websites look? :p

The trick is to keep on grinding! Learn as you go. I love this. Thanks for reading! More to come soon.

-Andy
 

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1. Make content on YouTube for businesses

“How to grow your t shirt business”

Stuff like that.

And then just advertise your services in your own videos

2. Build a free website for an influencer in exchange for advertisements for your company.

3. Post on craigslist in major metro areas around the US.

4. Set up a Slybroadcast message saying “I was looking you up and found a problem with your website. Kinda made it hard to use” and then make up a problem when they call back and tell them how they can improve their site and give away good website design advice and marketing advice for free, and only talk about selling them something if they say they want help changing it. Send it to massive list of business numbers you can buy for cheap.

5. Take the #1 idea videos and use them to make YouTube pre-roll ads targeted at the competition of other YouTube channels that talk about something similar. For example: if you sell marketing and web services to one customer who happens to be a clothing brand. You film the conversation of you giving great marketing advice and post it. Then, search “how to grow a clothing brand” and find a channel that posts a lot of videos for growing clothing brands specifically, take your video and advertise it to fans of that person’s videos, siphoning away their audience and offering a service that they’d need.
 

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I have two wonderful parents who are some of the most loving and supportive people you could ever ask for. Nonetheless, they are stuck in a J.O.B. mindset, as are a brother and a sister. I've argued with all of them in the past that having a J.O.B. is not a "safe" bet, especially in the age of automation and downsizing. Having a college degree is not a "safe" investment in your future, especially in the social sciences. Some well-meaning people are very ego-invested in "the way things are". That doesn't make them bad people, but just conditioned.

Part of what I really enjoyed about Unscripted is that so much time was focused on working on your inner game, or mindset. You can't drive success in the external world if your inner world isn't congruent with success. I do not discuss much in the way of business ideas or plans with my family, despite having a good relationship with them. Instead, I'm here on TMF and talking with other business owners in the offline world to sustain my creative energies.
 

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He told me "only celebrities and like 10 other people get to live that life, Andy. The rest of us have to work until we're 65. You have to be crazy rich to make that work".
Wow, tell 'em I was just with lunch with half of them. Too bad the other half in the world couldn't make it!
 

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But that statement: The rest of us
Funny you said that, it dead stopped my eyeballs from scanning the next line. What a sad characterization for folks to put on themselves, to identify as another fly on the flypaper.

Very tactful write-up, looking forward to your journey!
 

Andy Daniels

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Thanks everyone for the replies! @MJ DeMarco I'm glad to hear lunch went well yesterday with some awesome Forum members!


4/5/2019 Update
April goal: $1,500 MRR or 3 new clients


My uncle works with a network of construction contractors in SoCal, and I've been chatting with him about my website care packages I offer, essentially removing the work of dealing with the technical back-end and updates on their websites.
  • I really like the way @UnrealCreative put it, where I'm not just a freelancer, and I'm not a big agency, I'm right there in the middle. The difference is my customer service. Unlimited support for my clients (eventually going to be handled by my VA). For now I really enjoy getting to know their needs, it helps adjust my service offerings to meet their pain points.

I'm still plugging away at my own website, this weekend I'll be doing some keyword volume research to see what I should rank my site for, as well as finish up the Andy Black Adwords Jumpstart course.


Full Disclosure: I have NOT officially landed my first real client yet, but I'm close. I just need to keep taking action each day. The goals I'm setting for myself are freaking me out, which is how I know they are worth pursuing.


More to come, thanks all!

-Andy
 

Andy Daniels

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It's been a hard couple of days.

As an entrepreneur, I am constantly wanting to learn and grow. But I also know I need to put 100% into this if I want to achieve my goals.

I've really been struggling with a decision, it's a decision that so many of you had to make; when to quit your job and take the leap full-time.


I can tell myself all day long that it's the right decision for myself, and I need to give it my all, but I'm STILL doubting myself. It's a scary decision, but I also know that staying in the slowlane and giving up is even scarier.

My friend and I had a heated "discussion" about this. This is a slowlane friend, he just got his Masters in Archaeology, and he's been job searching for the past 3 months. With no luck.


I won't bore you with the details of this conversation, but the point is I really need to work on mindset. I'm letting myself be too influenced by the SCRIPT.


Goals Progress:

  • I've been cold emailing people in my network with friendly introductions to what I do, and I usually attach a report detailing some of their website/internet presence stats. I think I'm going at it the wrong way. I think I need to be more focused on outcome. Business owners really only care what you can earn them, and how much it will cost them.
    • Adjustment: Be more focused on outcome. Outreach in ways other than email.
  • I just completed the Andy Black Adwords Course, now I'm going to jump in and experiment with the concepts and tools. In this learning stage I'll keep my ad spend low, so I don't throw away cash on incorrect targeting.

Thanks everyone!

-Andy
 

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I just completed the Andy Black Adwords Course, now I'm going to jump in and experiment with the concepts and tools. In this learning stage I'll keep my ad spend low, so I don't throw away cash on incorrect targeting.
Yep. $5/day budget is plenty.

Curious what your biggest takeaways were from the course.
 

Andy Daniels

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Yep. $5/day budget is plenty.

Curious what your biggest takeaways were from the course.

Hey Andy! Loved the course!

I'd say my biggest takeaway was not to go with the settings that Google recommends (for the most part).
Example: Accelerated spend vs. balanced


Also how to structure keywords +in +this +structure to maximize effectiveness.
 

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Andy Black

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Hey Andy! Loved the course!

I'd say my biggest takeaway was not to go with the settings that Google recommends (for the most part).
Example: Accelerated spend vs. balanced


Also how to structure keywords +in +this +structure to maximize effectiveness.
The accelerated vs standard isn’t such a big deal tbh. Search partners and the default location setting are worse.
 

Andy Daniels

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4/13/19 Update


Got a local electrician in my pipeline. Making a call on Monday to get to know them and their goals.

I'm going to approach the call as if I was receiving it.

What would I want to hear?

What would annoy me like crazy?

What would I absolutely say yes to?



I'm nervous, but the worst that can happen is they could say no. No fear!!

Hope you're all having a great weekend!

-Andy
 

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The accelerated vs standard isn’t such a big deal tbh. Search partners and the default location setting are worse.
The search partners to me always seems ambiguous
 

Andy Black

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The search partners to me always seems ambiguous
I worked for a search partner. If they’re anything to go by then never ever have search partners on.
 

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4/13/19 Update


Got a local electrician in my pipeline. Making a call on Monday to get to know them and their goals.

I'm going to approach the call as if I was receiving it.

What would I want to hear?

What would annoy me like crazy?

What would I absolutely say yes to?



I'm nervous, but the worst that can happen is they could say no. No fear!!

Hope you're all having a great weekend!

-Andy
Just have a “chat”. Dont overthink it. Don’t make it a sales call.

Have a goal of getting to know him and his business, out of genuine curiosity and desire to help him.

Enjoy it and have a laugh with the guy.

What works for me is to thank them for taking the time to have a call with me, having a bit of chit-chat about the weather or something, then asking “So... how’s business going?”

Then shutting the f*ck up. (But not for too long, because this is a chat not a sales call right?)



Check out my Inbound Braindump thread in my signature.
 

Andy Daniels

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Have a goal of getting to know him and his business, out of genuine curiosity and desire to help him.
Definitely. I'll admit, this is a concept that has taken me a while to wrap my head around. It's crazy, because it's such a simple concept, yet so often overlooked.

Check out my Inbound Braindump thread in my signature.
Will do. I'll say it again, your course was awesome. Thanks for the insane value my friend, (And fellow Andy :smile:)


All the best,

Andy
 

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My parents are the same. Hell everyone I’ve met other then people online are the same. They all want you to fail. Classic crabs in a bucket. F*ck em. It’s your life do whatever YOU want. Don’t let ANYONE tell you otherwise. We all die but we all don’t live.
 

Andy Daniels

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4/20/19 Update

*Changed the title* Sorry for the confusion


Met with a retired business owner with deep connections in the medical field. He knows lots of private practice docs who have no idea how to operate a website.

He sits on a board of directors for a HUGE health agency in my county. He mentioned that their executive director is looking to have someone else take on their website work.

I will be reaching out for a meeting request, but I want to lead with something that will provide them value.

Excited to see some momentum, all from taking action and meeting with this one business owner.



They're not crazy. When veteran Fastlaners tell you that action is everything, IT'S TRUE.


Have a great Saturday!

-Andy
 

Andy Daniels

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4/22/19 Update

Cold called a sheet metal fabrication company this morning because they have some raw PHP code just hanging out in their header, it looks pretty terrible.

I got connected to the owner, he is aware of this issue but he "already sunk a ton of money into another company" to fix the problem. He took down my name and number in case they don't work out.

I don't really want to wait on that.

My plan right now is to build them a newly designed site (maybe just a landing page) without being asked to do it, and present it to them, maybe even in person.

More to come!

Andy
 

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Andy Daniels

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Also, I am shaking like a leaf after making that cold call. I really need to get more comfortable with sales.

What's the worst that could happen? They say no.

I love'd @Vilox 's thread on overcoming cold call anxiety. Will give that another read.
 

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5/17/19 Update

Hey! It's been a little while and I've been super busy grinding away!

I've been building a new website for a sheet metal manufacturer in Portland, and I am very close to being done with it!

I'm going to offer to pay for his first year of hosting, just so he feels like a priority (which he is).

I also get the sense that he doesn't want the hassle of managing the site himself, so I may be able to upsell some professional website care packages (like @GoodluckChuck does) so I can do the managing for him!

I can feel the ball rolling now, just have to stay focused!


-Andy
 

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5/17/19 Update

Hey! It's been a little while and I've been super busy grinding away!

I've been building a new website for a sheet metal manufacturer in Portland, and I am very close to being done with it!

I'm going to offer to pay for his first year of hosting, just so he feels like a priority (which he is).

I also get the sense that he doesn't want the hassle of managing the site himself, so I may be able to upsell some professional website care packages (like @GoodluckChuck does) so I can do the managing for him!

I can feel the ball rolling now, just have to stay focused!


-Andy
You had a call with this company. They told you they paid another company to fix it. And then you went ahead and spent time building a new site for them anyway? Just clarifying....If so, that seems like a waste of time to be honest.
 

Andy Daniels

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@AdamMaxum Good clarification, thanks for asking!

He told me "I've just sunk so much $ into this thing already, it's all such a mess".

So I told him that I'll be back with some real progress and a better solution for him. I'm just going to offer up as much value as possible, showing him that I truly want to help.

If I make the offer as irresistible as possible and he still slams the door on me, so be it. It's been a great learning experience! Some may view it as a waste of time, but with each website I build I refine and improve my process.
 

AdamMaxum

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@AdamMaxum Good clarification, thanks for asking!

He told me "I've just sunk so much $ into this thing already, it's all such a mess".

So I told him that I'll be back with some real progress and a better solution for him. I'm just going to offer up as much value as possible, showing him that I truly want to help.

If I make the offer as irresistible as possible and he still slams the door on me, so be it. It's been a great learning experience! Some may view it as a waste of time, but with each website I build I refine and improve my process.
Ok fair enough, but it doesn't seem like the best of opportunities. I would focus my time on more lead generation and do this on the side if I do it at all. You want to find leads that are interested and ready to do something. In a service based business, you should never work for free. If you want to build your portfolio, join upwork and apply for jobs at a big discount and grow your portfolio while you make some cash and use that portfolio as leverage with future leads/opportunities and steadily increase your rates on upwork. That's what I would do.
 

Andy Daniels

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but it doesn't seem like the best of opportunities
Just to clarify, you don't think providing amazing value upfront is a good idea?

If you want to build your portfolio, join upwork and apply for jobs at a big discount
Yikes, so get into a "race to the bottom" price war with a million other freelancers? Nah, I'm good.

No disrespect to you, sir! If this is working for you, that's awesome!! I personally want to build up my network from the ground up with real, honest business owners. To do that, I need to stand out from the pack. Providing amazing service, personalized interactions, taking a genuine interest in others. That's what I'm about.

That's what I would do.
You keep on doing you, man! I truly wish you all the best!
 

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Just to clarify, you don't think providing amazing value upfront is a good idea?

Not if someone doesn't explicitly ask you to provide it. No.

Yikes, so get into a "race to the bottom" price war with a million other freelancers? Nah, I'm good.


No disrespect to you, sir! If this is working for you, that's awesome!! I personally want to build up my network from the ground up with real, honest business owners. To do that, I need to stand out from the pack.
I don't do this anymore, but it works for those starting out.

There are business owners and companies on upwork and other job platforms? You can easily create relationships on those platforms with legit businesses and use those to build your "network".

If you don't like this path then at least find a business who is OPEN to letting you do them a new site or whatever it is they want...and maybe get paid in the process?

You're working for free at the moment in hopes of convincing a business to pay you. At least with upwork, you can do a few cheap jobs and adjust your rate accordingly, while at the same time providing value and making some money. You don't stay at the bottom...you build up your cred and use it to charge whatever you want.

Just giving you my 2 cents...from someone who was in your spot 6/7 years ago.
 

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Update:

Just sent the new website to the company owner. He mentioned to me that he's looking forward to connecting after looking over the new site. Good news I think!

I was still so freakin petrified making that call, even though it was great news for them (they get a new website, yay!).

Really need to get this cold calling anxiety under control.
 

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send him a an invoice ..... put in a sales discount for 'new client' so that the bottom total is $0 ..... then send a proposal for monthly updates / managment and for one or two 'projects to make it better' ......... then ask if he needs help w/ leads and adwords campaigns.....
 

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5/29/19 Update:

Got contacted by a potential client today, it's a connection from someone in my own network. They are looking to build up their online presence in the auto parts industry. This potential client is a franchisee for a large auto parts company, and simultaneously wants to build up her own brand alongside.

Their requests:
  • Research ways to market their products through the franchise they have a contract with
  • Research the camping gear/cargo carrier niche and explore potential product popularity without purchasing inventory
  • Build a website that advertises products/services beyond just their local area, establishing them as an authority in their niche. (Adwords to start, long term SEO throughout)

To summarize, it sounds like I would be providing consulting as well as a website build, coupled with long term SEO. I would love some advice about how to handle the communication going forward. This being one of my first official clients, I want to provide amazing value before talking $$, but I also know that charging provides accountability for both parties.

I definitely want to utilize the @Andy Black Adwords course to jumpstart some of their advertising.

Thanks for reading! More info to come.

-Andy
 

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6/4/19 Update:

MADE MY FIRST REAL SALE!!! Obviously it's not official until the $ gets transferred to me.

My offer was attractive enough and it worked! I'll be doing a website build and Adwords campaigns with local SEO for my new client!

I'm sending my service packages over, and they will choose the tier that suits them best.

Very excited!
 

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6/4/19 Update:

MADE MY FIRST REAL SALE!!! Obviously it's not official until the $ gets transferred to me.

My offer was attractive enough and it worked! I'll be doing a website build and Adwords campaigns with local SEO for my new client!

I'm sending my service packages over, and they will choose the tier that suits them best.

Very excited!
Congratulations man!
 

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  • Job on a college campus helping students succeed
  • Free apartment as a job perk, no rent
  • Free meal plan as a job perk, no need to buy groceries
  • No utility bills, all paid
Not bad right?
Welp, lol. I was informed yesterday that my contract won't be renewed, and I'll be out June 30.

That's the slowlane for ya I guess...

Now I'll be taking my web design biz over 100% because as of now, I really have no choice but to see it succeed. I have more than enough to see it through. So many people on this forum started and succeeded with so much less.

My rocket fuel, my WHYS:
  • Do I really want to retreat back to a desk job again? NOPE.
  • Do I want to show everyone who's doubting me that it in fact CAN be done? YES.

I'll be posting when I can, and offering as much value back to this forum as possible!

-Andy
 

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6/24/19 Update

Wow, things have been crazy lately. Meeting with a potential client on Thursday that is looking to have 3 sites built and managed. All because I shook hands with someone over the weekend.

Gettin' the ice cream!

Currently putting together a great offering for these guys with a ton of value attached!


Will update you all soon,

Andy
 
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Also, I am shaking like a leaf after making that cold call. I really need to get more comfortable with sales.

What's the worst that could happen? They say no.

I love'd @Vilox 's thread on overcoming cold call anxiety. Will give that another read.
Hi Andy,
As the sole salespeople for our business, my husband and I both deal with this on a regular basis. I'd recommend this audiobook by Sidney C. Walker Amazon.com: How I Conquered Call Reluctance, Fear of Self-Promotion, & Increased My Prospecting! eBook: Sidney C. Walker: Kindle Store It's really great! Also you could check out some of the free content on his site Sid Walker's Selling Without Wrestling Sales Training! If you can get past what is kind of an ugly website (sorry Sid), there is some really great info he puts out. Also a book called the Secret of Selling Anything by Harry Browne (available on Amazon Kindle app). That one I found through this forum and it's great
 

SamRussell

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Don't worry about the cold calls - like anything else, you will get more comfortable with them after a little practice.
 

BlackMagician

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Great to read your progress Andy!
It's 25 already, you will be 'jobless' in next 5 days. So what is your plan?

someone(i know who) gave me these questions as steps:

What is your next 3 steps?
How will you do?
whats the deadline?
 
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Andy Daniels

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Great to read your progress Andy!
It's 25 already, you will be 'jobless' in next 5 days. So what is your plan?

someone(i know who) gave me these questions as steps:

What is your next 3 steps?
How will you do?
whats the deadline?
I will complete my first client's website by July 5th, collect a testimonial from them, and post the project on my company website as social proof

I will use this project as a springboard into the next project with my next few clients, which I will get by first introducing myself to the local Homebuilders Association. I want to give a cool presentation to their members (without being salesy) about the importance of a good online presence. I will schedule a face to face by July 10th.

I have a meeting on Thursday (2 days from now) with a potential client who is looking to have 3 individual sites built for 3 of his businesses. I will come armed to that meeting with awesome value and be sure to communicate the benefits. If it doesn't end up being a good fit, that's ok. I will still keep in touch and check-in about his own progress.

*Bonus thing: I need to sit down and figure out how I'm going to maintain both my physical and mental well-being. I'm going into this knowing full well that nobody around me really understands it. I'll be making nutritional and exercise improvements, I'm really excited about this one! This will get done by tonight.

Things I've already done:
  • Created an accountability checklist using the @LightHouse Trello method. This will keep me organized and my brain less cluttered. I've got my goals written down, and I will review them every day.
  • Posted Craigslist ads in major metropolitan areas using the @Johnny boy way of advertising. I need to refine the copy, make it better.
  • Documented my process for SEO setup for my clients, to make it easier for me later to duplicate this
 

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