Marketing yourself effectively can seem like a daunting task for today’s small business owner. There are so many tools and platforms to choose from that it is hard to know where to begin. The most important things to remember are to set reachable realistic goals with your strategy, provide people with helpful content, and to make sure you stick to best practices.

As someone who's been immersed in a number of online industries for quite some time, I know a thing or two about what it takes to succeed in this arena. However, just like you, I started at ground zero with little knowledge, but a great deal of passion. What I learned along the way were some invaluable lessons from failure that hurt at the time, but helped immensely in the grand scheme of things.
If it’s not clear yet, information and expertise are two of the most consistent and lucrative ways to make extra money online. If you don’t like talking on the phone, you can sign up to get paid to answer professional questions on JustAnswer. There are thousands of questions being asked every month from people looking for help from lawyers, doctors, mechanics, vets, and more. To apply, you’ll need to supply your professional verification, resume, and a form of identification.

Writing an eBook and selling it on your blog can be a great money maker. Your eBook should be directly relevant to your blog’s content so you can sell your book to your existing audience. Creating a recipe eBook for a food blog or an eBook full of training plans to complement your fitness site are just a couple of examples that have the potential to sell.


"For an idea to get big, it has to be something useful--and being useful doesn't need funding. If you want to be useful, you can always start right now with just 1% of what you have in your grand vision. It'll be a humble prototype of your grand vision, but you'll be in the game. You'll be ahead of the rest because you actually started, when others waited for the finish line to magically appear at the starting line." Read this post from Derek for much more.
With the immense amount of information on the Internet and users largely having the control to view exactly what they want, getting your product in front of potential customers can be challenging to say the least. Over the years, I’ve learned a lot about what works (and what fails terribly) when it comes to marketing online. Today, times are tough. Most companies have little room left in their tight budget when it comes to marketing. Here are 7 tips to follow to develop a successful online marketing strategy on your startups limited budget.  
Find a profitable niche: We’ve talked about this a lot. But, where are you most comfortable. What niche do your skills, values, and interests intersect? Do you have 10 years of experience as a technical writer? Do you have long-standing PR relationships that’ll be invaluable in helping startups launch a successful crowdfunding campaign? Determine what makes your value unique, and lean heavily on showcasing that strength to your potential clients.

Blogging is something that requires patience, persistence and discipline. It may mean writing everyday for over a year before you really start to see any money from it. There are exceptions to the rule, but from my dealings with other bloggers, it seems to be pretty common to spend one or even two years building your blog, your brand and your authority, before making any serious amount of money.
Instead, you’ll be following a proven strategy for maximizing views of multiple videos on a regular basis. You’ll be creating useful content…something engaging that people want to watch. And it works in many, many different niches. It could be a how-to video, a talking-head video on a topic of interest to people interested in your niche...the sky is the limit.
Online sites like Etsy and ArtFire are platforms that make it extremely easy for crafters who can produce a steady supply of quality handmade items, like crocheted blankets or unique painted glassware. Startup costs are extremely low if you purchase your materials in bulk from a craft supplier, and if you can turn around orders quickly, you'll be making a profit in no time at all. It's even possible to turn your store into a full-time gig.

Today, if you're at all serious about succeeding in any endeavor, whether online or offline, you have to deliver enormous amounts of value. Yes, you have to do the most amount of work for the least initial return. This is especially true online. Why? Because it takes time to build authority and create an audience, two primary ingredients necessary to succeed in the wonderful world of commerce on the web.
Everyone knows that the quickest way to learn a new language is to mingle with native speakers. If you were lucky enough to be born in an English, French, Spanish (insert any of the world’s main languages) speaking country, then missing out on the opportunity to cash in on the skills you take for granted is exactly that – missing out! Use online communication tools, such as Skype or Google Hangouts, to connect with learners and leverage your privileges. Time is money, so package your hours into teaching sessions and you’re good to go.
I tend to be a competitive person, so it's helped me to turn my goal-setting into a competition with myself. While many people may not think they are competitive, you might be surprised once you create a competition that gives you something to beat. A good example is the 100-day challenge, often connected to fitness such as 100 days of planking or push-ups.

It's easy to get caught up in the day-to-day challenges of running a business, but you MUST carve out time at least once a week to take stock of what you're doing for the long-term health of your business. That includes marketing, training, employee development, community engagement and capital development. Sound investments today will pay dividends in the future. - Jim Judy, Try Franchising
The entrepreneur meaning is a bit different for Jolijt Tamanaha, Director of Marketing and Finance of Fresh Prints, who shares “Entrepreneurs make their way down a never-ending list of problems with grit, passion, and energy. While intense, being an entrepreneur means you get to live life learning an incredible amount and maximize your impact on the world because you have to tackle the hardest problems.”
Users are much more likely to “like” and share content that includes some imagery. Short text tweets should be transformed into eye-catching graphics with the same message. Writing a blog post with plenty of stats and facts? Consider turning it into an infographic, one of the most-shared forms of content. And just about any blog post will be more powerful with a short video.
If you've developed valuable skill sets or picked up certifications within your industry over the years, offering your consulting services to local business owners can be a lucrative way to make money online. Whether you're an expert marketer, business strategist, or manufacturing aficionado, there's likely a local business owner who's willing to pay you to help them solve an issue with their company. Start with this 18-step checklist to becoming a local business consultant from Karyn Greenstreet and then use my guide to crafting an effective cold email to convince them to hire you.
Matt is the CEO and co-founder of Case Escape. After receiving his MBA from Chapman University at age 23, Matt started his first business in California (which we started together back in 2013) and has since grown it into a worldwide business with over 100 clients and counting. Case Escape was founded with the goal of helping 1,000 entrepreneurs start their own phone case business. Here's his best business advice for first-time entrepreneurs who want to start a business of their own:
Blogging is something that requires patience, persistence and discipline. It may mean writing everyday for over a year before you really start to see any money from it. There are exceptions to the rule, but from my dealings with other bloggers, it seems to be pretty common to spend one or even two years building your blog, your brand and your authority, before making any serious amount of money.
A popular tactic to make money on social media is to pay for advertising affiliate products. Create ads for particular affiliate products that are big sellers and have a high yield. Then target these ads at specific custom audiences to ensure your ads are viewed by those who will have an interest in the product you are promoting. If viewers click through your from advert to the product page and make a purchase then you will earn an affiliate fee.
Here are my recommendations for the Financial Industry.  In 2016 investors hope not to drop the ball by missing out on a big opportunity in one sector or hanging on too long in another. Here, we present 10 sectors to watch in the new year, with financial and industry authorities weighing in on the potentials, opportunities and pitfalls to consider. You may also enjoy my Free Daily Signals.
Jay Baer has more than 20 years of experience in digital marketing and consulting for more than 700 companies, including 30 of the Fortune 500 companies. He is the founder of Convince & Convert, which provides social media and content marketing advice. The Convince & Convert blog was named the world’s #1 content marketing blog by the Content Marketing Institute and has more than 200,000 visitors monthly.
Once you’ve had children, many parents find themselves caught in the trap of needing to work but wanting to stay home with their kids. Creating your own parenting blog can not only be a way to make some money, but it can also help you connect with other parents and make sense of those crazy sleepless early parenting years (it does get easier don’t worry!)
1) Work harder than everyone else—I may not be the most formally educated, the most financially set up, or even the smartest, but I will give them a run for their money when it comes to ambition and determination. It’s a bit cliché, but I always remember this quote: “Always go the extra mile, there’s a lot less traffic up there.” 2) Every expert was a newbie at one point—don’t let them intimidate you out of your dream. Learn as much as you can, as fast as you can. 3) Ethics do matter—I don’t care what they say about “it’s just business,” the world comes full circle. Be competitive, but stay true to your beliefs and principles. It always comes back around eventually.
Marketing Land – Listed 4 out of 20 times. If you are keen on knowing new things about the digital marketing industry then Marketing Land is one of the best digital marketing blogs. In their Research section, you can find detailed analyses about items like: (i) MarTech Intelligence Report Enterprise Digital Personalization Tools: A Marketer’s Guide, (ii) B2B Marketing Automation Platforms: A Marketer’s Guide, and (iii) Enterprise Local Marketing Automation Platforms: A Marketer’s Guide.

Now next, you’ll want to pick a WordPress theme from somewhere like ThemeForest, Elegant Themes or OptimizePress. This is the barebones design of your site, which you can then customize with your own branding, copy, and images. That being said, you don’t want to cheap out. It costs less than $100 to buy a theme that will make your website look professional (and you can upgrade to a completely custom design once you get the business going).
Your corporate blog, Facebook Business Page, Twitter feed and other social sites all serve as potential platforms for fielding customer inquiries, sourcing ideas for new content and enhancing your brand image on the web. Additionally, social content, such as tweets and YouTube videos, will be indexed by search engines, which help boost your content’s relevance and page ranking.
Multi-vendor marketplaces, like ThemeForest, can be very successful. Chose a niche and create a vendor website for it. Your marketplace could be anything, from a platform for local artists to sell their work on, to an online digital product store. Once set up, invite people in that industry to sell their products on your site. You take a percentage of their profits when items sell.
Successful entrepreneurs know the importance of lifelong learning. Whether you’re new to the business world or a seasoned veteran, you should always be looking for new information about entrepreneurship and trends in your particular industry. If you’re looking to learn and grow your business this year, here are some insights from members of the online small business community.
To get the most out of internet marketing, make sure that you’re not just using multiple channels, but also that you’re integrating these channels into one coherent system. Promote your content across multiple channels, spread the word about your email list on social media, and put your social media handles into your marketing emails. You can also integrate some of your offline marketing techniques with internet marketing strategies.
Millions of people have listened to Steve Jobs’ 2005 commencement speech at Stanford, and for good reason. He nailed the passion issue: “You’ve got to find what you love… Your work is going to fill a large part of your life, and the only way to be truly satisfied is to do what you believe is great work. And the only way to do great work is to love what you do. If you haven’t found it yet, keep looking. Don’t settle.”
Many aspiring entrepreneurs think that fast, rapid growth is the sign of a successful business. However, most businesses are built slowly, over years and even decades. Whenever possible, entrepreneurs will build slowly, starting with the very first sale and crawling forward. Building slowly allows you to learn and make adjustments before plunging headfirst into the business. Dealing with new situations provides valuable on-the-job entrepreneurship training you won’t get from any formal degree. In many cases, entrepreneurs will keep their day jobs while building the business in their spare time.
The quote above was taken from one of Baer’s presentations, Youtility, which talks about how marketing isn’t just competing for attention against other products, but other life elements around your target audience (such as family and friends). Companies shouldn’t be thinking about how they can become more exciting, but how they can help their target audience better.
Need more ideas on how to make money online? Another strategy is using webinars to market your product, service, or course. I’ve done webinars to promote my financial planning practice and to drum up interest in my online course for financial advisors. With a webinar, you’re basically offering a lot of tips and advice for free — usually in a live format. At the end though, you pitch your paid product or service with the goal of securing a few deals.

A popular tactic to make money on social media is to pay for advertising affiliate products. Create ads for particular affiliate products that are big sellers and have a high yield. Then target these ads at specific custom audiences to ensure your ads are viewed by those who will have an interest in the product you are promoting. If viewers click through your from advert to the product page and make a purchase then you will earn an affiliate fee.

One of the best shortcuts to free up your time is to make use of automation tools. You can automate your social media posting and reputation monitoring, link building and analysis, meetings and appointments, marketing efforts, email lists, sales, and customer support. If you find yourself stressed out over the amount of work you have to do, consider that there is an automation tool available for it.


The vacation rental business is booming. While the mere mention of it might make you think about billion-dollar titans like AirBnB or HomeAway, there are niche businesses like Michael Joseph's InvitedHome and Joe Poulin's Luxury Retreats and many others being carved out across a variety of markets. When it comes to vacation rental homes and vacation rental management, companies are earning anywhere between 10 percent and 40 percent on the gross rental rate depending on the location and the management level.
×