Monthly Archives: June 2012

The No Excuses Vacation

By Gail Z. Martin

Every year, when warm weather rolls around, you’ll hear them. They’re the ones bragging about how long it’s been since they went on a vacation, as if being a workaholic is a badge of honor.  If you’re terribly unlucky, you’ll be in a room with two or more of these folks, and they’ll start to compete for the dubious honor of who doesn’t have a life.

To that, I say…”Piffle.”

Non-stop work is a recipe for burnout, inefficiency, sluggish thinking, and illness.  Often, it results from a fear that if you can leave the office for a week or more, you become indispensable, and it’s often coupled with an inability to delegate.  More often than not, in my experience, workaholics and non-vacationers are using their overwhelm to keep from thinking about another, deeper problem—a family issue, financial disarray, or relationship problems.

What if you’re short on cash and you’re a one-person shop?  You still owe it to yourself to plan some downtime into your year.  A vacation needs to be a mental and physical rest, but nothing says it has to be long or pricey.

Designate a specific weekend as a no-work zone.  If you’re a gadget junkie, unplug yourself, leave your electronics on the kitchen counter, and spend a day out and about.  Do something you enjoy.  Maybe that’s a walk in the woods, a long drive with the radio blaring, a quiet afternoon spent in a comfortable chair at a coffeehouse with a good book.  Wander through a museum, get some fresh air at a nearby state or national park, or go sit on a dock and watch boats go by.

The point is, disengage from your normal routine, your usual worries, and your day-to-day mental rut.  Don’t stress out about trying not to think about work.  When you find that you’re thinking about work, observe what is happening, and let it go, as if your thoughts are clouds moving past ib the sky.

Whenever I do this, I find that by the end of my no-work zone, my mind is suddenly full of creative solutions to all the things I worried about beforehand.  I’m able to go back to the office with exciting ideas, and I’m mentally and physically refreshed.

Why not try a no-excuses vacation for yourself this season and see what a change of pace can do for you?

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Filed under Balance, Gail Z. Martin

Think, Act and Grow Rich

By Gail Z. Martin

I love Napoleon Hill’s book, Think and Grow Rich.  If you’ve missed this classic, grab a copy from the library.  Hill interviewed the capitalist kings (the great Robber Barons of the early 1900s) to discover the secret behind their enormous success.  What he discovered were common actions, habits, traits and perspectives which, Hill believed, could enable anyone to change his/her fortune if adopted.

While the book is a classic, I think Hill left something important out of the title.  It’s not just enough to think.  To make things happen, you’ve got to act.

When I speak to audiences about social media and business marketing, I’m thrilled when people buy my books and sign up for coaching.  Yet all too often, when I check back with the same people six months or a year later, I find they have yet to act on what they’ve learned.  Predictably, no change has occurred.

Strategic, deliberate action based on a clear idea of what you want to accomplish lies at the heart of every personal and professional success.  Thinking about it isn’t enough—you must DO something to make change happen.

All action begins with a thought, and when the thought sets an intention, change is set in motion.  When you set an intention, you move beyond wishing and wanting and make a clarative statement to the universe about what you will into existence.  This is powerful stuff.  Many mythologies tell us that the universe itself began with a word spoken with intent.  Intention, combined with thought and action, yields amazing results.

Begin by stating your intention.  Be clear, and declare what you want.  For example, don’t just say, “I want to be rich.”  Craft an intention that charts your course, something like, “I intent to reach the million-dollar mark for my company by (date).”

Take the next step by defining your goals.  Prioritize what you want, and be specific.  Next, determine what the critical path of actions must be to achieve your goals.  There is usually a sequence of key events that have to happen in a certain order to make an outcome happen.  Map it out—step one, step two, and so on.

Then, set a timeline.  Something almost magical happens when a desired outcome acquires a due date.  Now, it is an appointment to be kept, a deadline to be met, and not just a squishy wish.

Figure out your Plan B.  While things don’t always go smoothly, chance favors the prepared.  If something interrupts your critical path or delays your timeline, what are your alternatives?

When you think through your goals and act with intent, you become unstoppable. What intention will you set today?

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Filed under Gail Z. Martin

Confessions of a Success Sherpa

by Faith Monson

Sherpas are the guides who help mountain climbers safely reach the crest of Mount Everest, the tallest mountain in the world.  I don’t climb mountains, but some days, it feels like it.  Instead, I help my clients reach their personal peak—in business and in life.

Sometimes, it feels as if we’re climbing up hill, carrying heavy baggage, breathing thin air.  When that happens, it’s my job to know the safe trails, recognize the skills and limitations of my client, and be a ceaseless source of encouragement.  It’s a combination of recognizing real-life pitfalls, knowing the path, and believing that my client can do what he or she has set out to do.  It’s hard, but it’s worth it for the view from the peak.

Every good guide has his or her own tools for tackling the trail.  Here are few of my favorites:

A 360 evaluation.  Since people are usually blind to their own true strengths and areas for improvement, I take a look at what others have written, such as testimonials or interviews.  It’s amazing what will surface when we step back and see what other people value about my client that he or she didn’t even think was important.

Competitor research.  I look at my clients’ competitors until I find something new and different or better and excellent or something that gives me a new perspective on my client’s approach. I want to see the variety of ways the best people in their industry are presenting themselves and their services.  Once we have a fresh look at the competition, we can best decide how to differentiate, where we can adapt something they’re doing, or where the market sees a gap we can fill.

I’ll be sharing more of my Sherpa Secrets over the next few posts, with a goal of helping you think about the tools, mindset shifts and approaches that can help you get unstuck.  There’s a reason people hire Sherpas to climb Mt. Everest –it’s because they couldn’t get to the other side without help.

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Filed under Coaching, Dreams

Why Video Helps Brings MORE Traffic to Your Site

by Krizia

Google LOVES videos!

Do you know why more and more news platforms such as CNN are adding more videos to their articles? Research shows that reader’s perception of importance soared when a video accompanied a story! The more viewers watch a video, share that link on social media and keep that constant flow of traffic, the more Google will perceive this page or website as influential and the more that site will rank high in the search engines.

Here’s another fact about the importance of video in regards to increasing traffic to your site — according to Forrester Research, the simple act of adding video to your homepage makes your site 53 times more likely to appear on the first page of Google!

With a little optimization to ensure more of your ideal clients find your videos, and your website has a 96% chance of not only landing on the front page of Google, but also securing one of the top coveted three spots that make up for 84% of web traffic.

Video is a real client magnet and when you know how to leverage video you’ll be able to attract more ideal clients and more profits to your business.

Another reason why video works so well at attracting a constant stream of new clients is because video helps build links from other sites that point back to your site. This is what’s called SEO or search engine optimization and that is so important to the success of your video marketing strategy.

In other words, when you add a video to your website or blog and you take time to make sure the content around the video such as the title, the copy and the video itself are relevant, your videos have a much higher chance of being listed in front of your competitors who are not yet leveraging the power of video. Your pages that contain videos also have a higher chance of being linked to on other sites and therefore creating more outbound links pointing back to your site.

Those links have a lot of value for Google because the more sites link back to you, the more your site is perceived as important.

This is because it’s very exciting especially if some of those sites are ranked higher than yours in Google’s eyes … that’s just gravy for you because it increases your chances of being found.

If you want to create a flurry of traffic with your videos, you’ll want to use the following “traffic Ninja tactic”:

Lists posts ranked very high with search engine! I’m sure you’ve seen hundreds of them. Here’s an example: 7 Ways to Use Video to attract more clients would be the title and then you address each point in your post!

If you include a photo that has been saved using a keyword, you’ll see even more traffic.

If you add a video to that optimized image and the list post, you’ll skyrocket your traffic because you’ll be offering Google a lot of reasons to send a lot of love your way in terms of floods of traffic.

You see, posts with videos included will attract almost 3 times more links to your site than a plain text post.

Posts with videos, images, and lists will attract almost 6 times more links to your site than a plain text post.

The new reality is that Internet users are giving a great deal of importance to videos and it shows by how many videos are going viral. Viewers are more likely to want to share that video content with others in their communities and the same goes for other site owners – they’ll happily post a video from YouTube on their site even if it belongs to another person if they see value for their audience.

All this creates more links pointing back to your site and that’s just like saying to Google that you are “that important”.

If you’d like to know more about how best to leverage video in your business, I invite you to watch this FREE Online Training!

The ‘3 Ways You Can Use Video to Attract MORE Clients and Profits’ Online Training is packed with powerful strategies you can apply immediately in your business in order to attract more clients and more profits!

Here’s the link to watch the F-R-E-E Online Video Training:



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Filed under Uncategorized

Video Boosts Your Social Media Strategy!

by Krizia

Did you know that video is 10 times more likely to generate a response than all social media activities combined?

This means that you’ll get far better results from your social media efforts because those responses will allow you to begin a REAL conversation — a critical element to building your community, and that in turn will allow you to convert more ideal clients into buyers!

Now, when I say video, I don’t mean shooting a video, uploading it on YouTube and thinking your work is done!

If you expect results from the standard “drop and run” strategy, you’ll be very disappointed.

Once you have the right video, you need to get the attention of the right audience (aka your IDEAL clients).

This means you’ll want to use your videos and distribute them on your social media platforms to start promoting your products and services.

Whether you’re on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Google+, or any other social sharing service, your basic strategy will be the same: be interesting, be relevant, and be real. Those are three important elements for each video you create, so let’s spend some time breaking those down:

1) Are you interesting or boring on video?

You’ll want to make sure the content of your videos are interesting and keeps the attention of your viewers. You’ll also want to make sure to avoid vague or boring titles. You’ll also want to avoid sounding like everyone else because sameness will be the kiss of death for your videos. Think about what catches your attention when you are reading your Facebook newsfeed or checking out the latest Tweets and integrate that into the title of your videos.

2) Are your videos relevant?

Clarity is everything with video! This holds true for the title of each video, but also its content.

You want it to be very obvious to your audience which topics you are addressing in each of your videos.

Make sure that from the very first few seconds that people have a sense of what they’re clicking to see. If they aren’t clear about the nature of the relevancy of the video, they’re not going to click to watch and if they do start watching, they’ll quickly move on.

3) Are you real on your videos?

Just like on YouTube, many companies simply post their latest press release to their social media channels and wait to “go viral”.

That’s why company channels look more like well scripted TV commercials than engaging platforms.

To cultivate the kind of community that will care about what you have to say and spread your message, you can’t be afraid to have a personality: engage your followers.

Make sure to ask and respond to questions, comment on news relevant to your industry, and yes, have a little fun and don’t be afraid to use humor!

Remember, there are a few goals you want to attain when it comes to your video and social media strategy: 1) You want them to watch 2) You want them to “like” your videos 3) You want your viewers to share your videos with their networks so that your video keeps attracting more new clients!

If you’d like to know more about how best to leverage video in your business, I invite you to watch this FREE Online Training!

The ‘3 Ways You Can Use Video to Attract MORE Clients and Profits’ Online Training is packed with powerful strategies you can apply immediately in your business in order to attract more clients and more profits!

Here’s the link to watch the F-R-E-E Online Video Training:


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Filed under Guest Blogger

Spring Happened—Did You Notice?

By Gail Z. Martin

We’ve had an indecisive spring this year: hot one day, cold the next.  But finally, the leaves are out, the grass is green, and the flowers are blooming.  We humans might be confused about how to dress for the weather, but Mother Earth, as usual, turns out in style.

I am always grateful for spring; not just because it is the end to winter, but because it reminds me that life is full of new beginnings.  The dry leaves, dead grass and wilted flowers from last autumn and summer have miraculously become new again.

That’s important, because we all need renewal.  There are plenty of places in my life still filled with dry leaves, dead grass and wilted flowers from seasons long past, and where I haven’t welcomed the new beginning of spring.  I’m working on it, but every time I think I’ve gotten all the mental crabgrass, I turn around and there’s another patch, waiting to be weeded.

What does spring look like in your life?  Maybe it’s a new start for your business, a new exciting project, or a new relationship.  Maybe it’s recommitting to an exercise program, a goal, or a dream.  Maybe it’s the courage to burst forth in blossom after a long winter.

If you’ve still got winter in your soul, perhaps a dose of spring is just what you need.  Begin with gratitude, frame an intention of what you would like to see happen, and turn your intention into action.  Small steps in the right direction are perfectly acceptable.

Embrace spring, and see what a difference it makes!

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Filed under Business Planning, Gail Z. Martin