I love, love, love free stuff. Soooo, so much. If it’s free, I’ll definitely give it a try. No matter what. Of course, sometimes I get what I pay for and it sucks. But then I will eventually stumble upon a gem that I can’t get enough of. The kind of thing that I can’t believe is free and then I become totally hooked.
So obviously through my years of entrepreneurial pursuits I’ve gathered some pretty amazing free tools that help me do whatever it is I’m passionate about at the moment. These are those tools. Some might not be strictly business, but as we all know, when you’re an entrepreneur your life and business become so intertwined that at times they are indistinguishable. Which is the BEST part of being an entrepreneur.
So here we go! The absolute best free tools for entrepreneurs:
As you already know, I love love love using Zazzle as a creative outlet…and of course, to make a little extra money 🙂 . So when a new and somewhat odd product is introduced, I usually jump on it right away to see what I can create. And to my delight, occasionally these products actually make me some money. Which I LOVE.
I know this sounds ridiculously corny, so I’m hesitant to even write an entire post about it, but I’m telling you – this one simple activity is how my husband and I have (and are) achieving all of our dreams in record timing. It’s why I’m able to stay at home with my son, how we bought two investment properties, are learning a second language, have spent our summer traveling, have become vegan, the list goes on and on…
So here’s the really simplistic, dumbed-down gist of how we’ve made it all happen: Every few months (if we’re lucky, weeks), we sit down and formally Goal Set. I’m emphasizing formally and capitalizing Goal Set on purpose – it’s that big of a deal and that big of an event for us…it’s better than a date night (actually, we love it so much that it basically is a date night). But most importantly, it consistently and reliably always works – sometimes it’s scary how much so.
So here’s what we do, and how you can (and should) do it too:
There are a ton of roadblocks that make starting a blog intimidating and setting up the actual website is certainly one of them – especially if you’re a writer at heart. Thank goodness for WordPress! If you’re still in the very early stages of setting up a blog and haven’t picked a platform yet, please take this one piece of advice – CHOOSE WORDPRESS. If you don’t, at some point in the next year you will be migrating your site to WordPress and it will be a pain in the butt.
The reason is plain and simple – WordPress makes everything extremely easy. And one of the ways they do that is by offering thousands of plugins that add special functions, bells, and whistles to our sites. All of the plugins listed below are free, so I highly recommend you just add them right away. I use each and every one of them, so everything I’m telling you is from my own experience.
Here we go! The best WordPress plugins for beginner bloggers:
Ok, it’s probably no surprise to any of you that I love using my photography to make a little side income (I use Zazzle to do this, but there are other similar sites). It has been one of my favorite hobbies for a really long time and over the past few years it’s been a nice source of extra spending money.
I’ve written a few times about the different ways you can actually use Zazzle to make money from your photography (I’ll list them below for reference). But I thought it would also be worthwhile to tell you exactly why it is worth your time to add sites like Zazzle to your portfolio of hobbies and/or income sources. And more importantly, why you should be using your photographs (that you’re already taking!) to make some extra money.
Here are the other articles to check out if you’re as excited as I am about this:
There are two main elements to a successful blog – great content and powerful marketing. And while most conventional advice says to spread your marketing efforts over various platforms, pretty much all bloggers quickly realize one thing – Pinterest is everything.
But for those that haven’t yet realized, I will say it again – Pinterest is everything. Yes, of course you should have a Facebook page and a Twitter account and the obligatory Google Plus account, but none of those are as important as Pinterest. Not only does it drive the most qualified traffic, but it has the highest revenue per click rate of all social media platforms. This is really, really important. These are the people that click on your ads and purchase your recommendations and use your recipes again and again and again.
Now that I’ve made my pitch, here’s the important stuff! Here are all the things I’m doing to try and increase my own blog’s Pinterest traffic:
Freelance writing is great no matter who you are, what you do, or where your career is headed. It is personal and professional, can be done at anytime and anywhere, and will build your authority and expertise. Whether you are evaluating corporate stocks or just mommy blogging, it’s a great path to take. And best of all, it helps pay the bills.
Luckily we are in an era where content is king, so every single company and website is looking for quality articles, posts, and web copy to add to their site. Getting your first freelance writing job is nerve-racking, but it’s well worth the reward of working for yourself and having a beautiful finished product at the end of every job.
Related article: How to Start a Money-Making Blog
No matter what your background is, if you can write well, then you can write professionally. Here is how to get your first freelance writing job: (more…)