A FREE electronic magazine... July 3, 2002
B I G B U C K S I N A B A T H R O B E
Make More Money & Have More Fun With Your Small Business!
Publisher: Dave Balch, "The Stay-at-Home CEO"(tm)
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I n T h i s I s s u e . . .
1. A "Quickie" - Personal Observation
2. Feature: Article
3. Feature: "Ask Dave" - Can I help with a business problem?
Are we taking the right first baby steps?
4. Feature: "Meanwhile, back at the ranch..."
5. About "Big Bucks in a Bathrobe" Newsletter
6. Who the Heck am I, Anyway?
7. How to Subscribe / Unsubscribe
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Copyright (c)2002, A Few Good People, Inc. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.
11111 A "Quickie" - Personal Observation
I don't know about you, but I'm getting sick of "easy money"
e-mail offers. "$5,000/month with no investment and no
"As seen on national TV..." - I felt my blood pressure go
up just typing that one!
There is no easy money. Period. Unless, of course, you are
doing something that you love doing.
If it were as easy as that they would be idiots to let
anyone in on it.
Come to think of it... oh, nevermind.
22222 A r t i c l e "Start!"
By Dave Balch, "The Stay-at-Home CEO"(tm)
It's hard to get started.
That could mean a lot of different things, so let me talk
about a few of them.
For one thing, getting started in the morning can be pretty
difficult for a lot of folks: just getting to that first
cup of coffee can be the biggest challenge of the day! Try
this: at the end of today, try to save something for
tomorrow that you are really looking forward to doing.
Then, when your eyes open and that dreadful feeling of "I
don't wanna get up!" starts to flood over you, you might
remember the fun thing you saved for yourself and jump out
of bed with enthusiasm. (Or not!)
It's also hard to get started when you have a seemingly
overwhelming pile or list of things to do, such as a stack
of bills, letters, or emails that you have to deal with.
Here's a tip: 'trick' yourself by deciding that you will
only deal with, say, 10 of them and then give yourself a
reward. For example, you'll just answer 10 emails and then
treat yourself to a short European vacation! Hmmmmm, maybe
that would be a little extreme... how 'bout a short walk in
the sunshine or listening to your favorite CD track? Here's
what will happen: you'll do that first 10 and you'll say to
yourself, "That wasn't so bad, I'll just do another 10 and
then have my treat." Before you know it, the task will be
done and you'll really enjoy that treat that you've earned.
When I started this article, though, I was thinking more
about starting a new project. That might mean a new product
or service, a new advertising campaign, a new marketing
strategy, or buying a new computer. Whatever the project
is, it involves a number of steps and taking that first one
For example, you've decided that you need to revamp your
marketing strategy. There are so many things to decide!
Who should you target? What's the best way to reach them?
What is the message that you want to send? How will you
test it? How much should you spend? How are you going to
document the plan you come up with? What will it look like?
What should it include?
Where should you start? Which of those questions should you
The answer may surprise you. Here it is: it doesn't
That's right! It doesn't matter where you start. JUST
Just write something down or type something in. It doesn't
matter, JUST DO IT! There is a fundamental principle of the
universe that is at work here and that is this: it's much
easier to change SOMEthing than to start with a "blank sheet
You know that no matter what you start with it's probably
going to change before the project is finished. And just
about everything you do at first will give you new ideas
about some aspect of what you're doing. Therefore it
doesn't really matter where you start because the first
thing you do will probably change and be rearranged anyway.
So start... NOW!
33333 "A s k D a v e"
(Can I help you with a business problem? I will field
business questions in every issue. Send them to
Ask whatever you'd like... all letters will remain anonymous.
Maybe my 2-cents'-worth will help you make "Big Bucks"!
My husband and I have started a Virtual Secretary/Computer
Support Company. We are both highly educated but have never
taken the plunge into working for ourselves and we hoping
that we are taking the right steps to build our at home
business. Should we start our first marketing strategy with
a mass mailing and just our website? I was also gong to
attempt the old standard door-to-door sales strategy. We
both are working full time and trying to get this business
off the ground with not too much time passing to get it
going or we fear the enthusiasm will wither away for us to
continue the pursuit of being independent business owners.
Are we taking the right first baby steps?
M.G., North Carolina
My answer to your question is, "It depends".
First of all, you mentioned "mass mailing"... if you are
going to buy a list of "100 million fresh email addresses
for $99" or something to that effect, DON'T DO IT. You
will be joining the ranks of the spammers and could
literally be kicked off of the internet by your ISP.
DON'T DO IT. IT DOES NOT WORK.
The best way to reach your market depends on who your
market is. If it is "everyone with a computer", then you
have some work to do... that is too broad and large a
market. You must target to a smaller subset of that
market to make your campaign manageable.
Also, I'm not sure exactly what service(s) you are going
to offer... "virtual secretary/computer support" is
pretty general, but if you are talking about small office
support, I wouldn't suggest suddenly getting a large
number of clients. You need to start slowly to "work out
the kinks" regarding what you are doing, how you're going
to do it, how you are going to charge for it, how long
it's going to take, etc.
Although having too much work is normally considered a
"good" problem, I think you need to cut your teeth on a
select few before you roll out a big marketing campaign.
Besides, you need to do a good job on your first clients
so you can get good testimonials and referrals from them.
44444 "M e a n w h i l e, b a c k a t t h e r a n c h..."
A glimpse into the life of this "Stay-at-Home CEO"
(Photos and short bios of the complete "cast of characters"
are posted at http://www.TheStayAtHomeCEO.com/theranch.htm )
Kate went to a family reunion in Wisconsin this week, so we
get to take care of Georgie. He is a wonderful dog and
understands complete sentences.
He was limping, so Kate took him to the doctor before she
left; he can't run for a few weeks. For Georgie, that's a
problem because he loves to chase the light from a
flashlight and he sits and stares at us as soon as it gets
dark, just waiting for the flashlight to appear.
Since Chris has been unable to ride the horses, Kate and
Shelly, (a friend of ours) have been taking them on Tuesdays
and Thursdays. Since Kate is gone, I go with Shelly and
yesterday we had a real nice ride. Georgie coudln't go,
however, and he was very upset about it all.
The two poodles always want to play, and Georgie can't.
He will be getting some relief, however, because Cinder is
coming to visit! Cinder is Simone's half-sister, another
black poodle who belongs to our dear friends who are also
going away. Cinder will be arriving shortly, and the three
black poodles will be running around like crazy, giving
Georgie a much-needed break.
Wait a minute... that means we're going to have four dogs
for a while! AHHHHHHHHHHHH!!
-------------------- CHRIS'CANCER UPDATE
(Chris was diagnosed with breast cancer on April 22. Many
of you have requested updates on her progress so I will post
a BRIEF summary here in each issue.)
It has been three weeks since her surgery and that is the end of
the "healing" period, according to the surgeon. She is doing
very well and her chemotherapy begins with a consult on July 9.
55555 A b o u t "Big Bucks in a Bathrobe" N e w s l e t t e r
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66666 W h o t h e H e c k a m I, A n y w a y ?
I've generated over $5 million (so far!) from my own home-based
software business and I have a lot to share with you about how I
did it and what I learned along the way. Now, as a professional
speaker, I offer programs that will help you and your employees
"Make More Money and Have More Fun" with your small or home-based
Visit me at http://www.TheStayAtHomeCEO.com for descriptions of
the programs and educational resources that I offer.
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help you "Make More Money and Have More Fun" with your business.
Take a look at http://www.TheStayAtHomeCEO.com/boutique.htm
77777 H o w to S u b s c r i b e / U n s u b s c r i b e
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A Few Good People, Inc.
P.O. Box 824
Twin Peaks, CA 92391