Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Hiding Behind Excuses

"The greatest deception men suffer is from their own opinions"
~Leonardo da Vinci

Many of us blame external factors such as the economy, politics, world conflicts, work life and even our friends and family members for our own problems. We make excuses for our lack of success, or mask our own insecurity, indecision or inaction. In reality, anyone can succeed during a “down” economy or any other negative situation because it’s just a state of mind. Our own opinions can deceive us!
Recently I gave a marketing presentation and discussed the role of positivity for success. An entrepreneur in the audience described how difficult it was to stay positive during “this terrible economy” which he said was affecting his career. I couldn’t believe that this accomplished businessperson was limiting himself!
During “down” times, it is more important than ever to stay positive and focused. Don’t agonize about so-called recessions or other external factors that may be limiting you! In fact, as a professional, I have worked in a “down” industry and continued to grow my income every year because I concentrated on my specialization and remained positive.
Never allow your own opinions to deceive you! Remember that you are in control of your thoughts and actions, and maintain a positive attitude!

[Note: Before I forget, my next 4-Week Accelerated Coaching Program starts next week...are you ready for BIG transformation results in your career? Achieve your dream biz goal in just weeks, space is limited so check it out now! Here's to your success! ~Alex]

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Facebook Ads: To Use or Not?

If you've been following me for a while, you know I love sharing information you can use to leverage your business. And there's no more leverage than taking advantage of the internet and the places where people (ie potential clients) are "hanging out."

According to, the social networking site had 955 million monthly active users at the end of June 2012. With continued growth, various estimates peg the site reaching 1 billion users this month (August). Chances are most of your clients or new leads are "hanging out" on this site at least a couple of hours per week. Does your business have a page and a social media strategy to take advantage of these potential leads?
I always like to share what has worked for me, and that is Ads. I've used Facebook Ads both to drive traffic to my startup artist's community and my personal website for my coaching business Artista Coaching. I'm going to try them out soon to drive more Likes from qualified leads to my new Facebook page.

Here are 4 Reasons why I use it, and good tips for you to consider as well:

1. They're Inexpensive: You can choose how much you want to pay per day or over a time period, like a launch campaign. I have always used the pay-per-click kind, but you can also pay for general exposure. This option allows you to compete with the "big girls" like national brands!

2. Can be based on Broad or Highly Targeted Criteria: Let's face it, using Facebook isn't "free." Each user's profile is filled with their interests, age, gender, career, education, location, etc. You can select broad criteria, such as "females who like art" or very targeted criteria such as "females, ages 18-22 that attend University of Florida and live in Gainesville, FL." That's pretty darn cool!

3. Very Effective with a Strong Call-to-Action: What do you want your client to do next? You can use it to gain more "Likes" for your page, or you can send visitors to a landing page on your site where you want them to do something, like sign up for a newsletter, free gift or peruse your products. Just make sure you don't send them to a weak landing page that says nothing about you or your business, unless you'd like to see how quickly you can waste a $1.50 click.

4. Great for Testing: Do you have a new product line or marketing campaign you'd like to test out? Try several different ads with different verbiage to see what gets clicked on. I've used this to determine keywords, phrases and categories that resonate the most with my target audience. You can even try it on different landing pages to see what gets the best results. 

Bottom line is they're relatively cheap, targeted and effective. While there's no guarantee that users will "see" or click on your ad, the beauty is you can create different ads and verbiage to test what does work. If you haven't tried them yet, why don't you invest $25 and test it out?

Would you like to learn how to gain more followers, leads and traffic, designing effective Facebook Ads, and learning other great strategies and shortcuts to be more effective on Facebook? Join me this Friday as I host a webinar Facebook for Business: How to Create an Effective Marketing Strategy. Get your early bird discount and space by Wednesday, as space is limited!

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Ask Alex: Spend More Time on my Art, Less Time on Marketing

"Ask Alex"  

Q: "I would like to focus more time on creating my art work and less time on marketing myself. What do you suggest?" 
~Artist, Pennsylvania

A: My suggestion: Delegate & Automate! If you have limited funds, hire an intern or spend a few hundred dollars a month to hire a freelance professional from websites such as Elance or Craig's List that can help with some time-consuming tasks. Automate whatever you can, such as using Hootsuite to schedule social media posts in advance, creating email autoresponders, or paying your employees with a monthly online billpay service. 


Have a question for me? Email with subject line "Ask Alex." If you'd like additional help, check out my courses, success programs or coaching programs

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Taking Responsibility for Your Actions

[Note: Before I forget, my next 4-Week Accelerated Coaching Program starts in a few weeks...are you ready for BIG transformation results in your career? Achieve your dream biz goal in just weeks, space is limited so check it out now! Here's to your success! ~Alex]


Hopefully most of you have been watching the Olympics and seen my favorite Gator swimmer Ryan Lochte win a few Olympic medals, including 2 golds. Lochte stars in a commercial from AT&T in which he says "Luck didn't get me to London, I swam here."

That is so powerful. (And not just because he's a gold medal winning Olympic champion and world record breaking swimmer!) Instead of leaving it up to luck or destiny, hard work, discipline, persistence and commitment will get you results. 

Very successful people realize they are in control and take ownership of the results in their lives. They are decisive and confident in their decisions. 

On the other hand, it is very common for most of us to see ourselves with blinders and not realize how we act or our role in our decisions and actions. We give lame excuses that involve everyone and everything other than ourselves.

Last week I mentioned that many people use the term "I can't" very loosely. Be very clear about what you can and cannot do.

Are you holding yourself accountable for all your decisions and actions? Blaming other people such as your family, boss and other external sources is a common way to avoid taking responsibility. Instead of looking at your role in a situation, many of us think thoughts like "if only he/she/they would do/say/be..." things would be better. 

If you're not getting the success you want in your life, you may need to take a step back and assess your thoughts and behaviors. 

Taking full responsibility for your life is extremely empowering... and will lead you down the path toward success. Blaming outside forces (or even holding on to our own shortcomings) is irresponsible and will keep you stuck in the same status. 

Action Step: Notice the next time you say "I can't" or blame other people or outside forces for the events and results you get in your life. Catch yourself before you say these words. Instead of
"I can't" use terms such as "I choose" or "I prioritize." When something you are working on does not pan out, acknowledge your role and that you can try harder or try a different approach. You'll be on your way to Empowerment! 

This article is derived from Ch. 2 on Creating a Powerful Mindset from Sculpt Your Life From Sketch to Masterpiece(TM). This success program presents the 12 most powerful strategies for success and is designed to motivate you to increase your productivity, reach your goals and ultimately fulfill your purpose toward your masterpiece life!