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Friday, June 27, 2014

Free Business Resources for Writers and Entrepreneurs (Which You Are, Dear Writer)

Writing is a business, and anyone who hasn't run into that aspect yet will do themselves a favor to get prepared now. I've run into many authors and entrepreneurs (which authors are, essentially) who are frustrated with finding helpful information about marketing, social networking, and growing their business. Fortunately, there are many free resources out there, from blogs to webinars to email classes that can help you hit the ground running.  

The thing is, most of these folks know each other, so once you touch base with one email list, you'll find out about the others.  Many of them cross-promote each other, which has introduced me to so many great resources.  Here they are, in no particular order.

Remember football player and sports commentator Fran Tarkenton?  Well he's all about helping entrepreneurs.  At Go Small Biz  there are  free guides you can download.  And that's not all. He teamed up with Office Depot for the Small Biz Club , which is chock full of  free resources, including videos from business leaders. Subjects include  Leadership, Technology, Finance, Sales and Marketing, and Run and Grow (growing your business).  Who knew?

Nathalie Lussier    She's upbeat. She's fun. She knows we don't have a lot of time. Her videos and podcast
(available free on iTunes) are short and sweet. Her 30 day list building challenge is the bomb and taught me many things about creating landing pages etc.  (And her information, information I had paid for through other classes, was free!) I will go through the material again.  Nathalie is good at explaining technical stuff in very easy to understand terms.

Firepole Marketing   Danny Iny of Firepole Marketing has a LOT to say, and he is uber-connected to other like minds in the industry. If you sign up for emails, you will be inundated. A lot of it is great stuff, but it can be hard to keep up with.

I actually paid for the ABM class. There was a lot of useful information, but I do wish I had discovered some of these other resources first.

Laura Leigh Clarke   If you you sign up for her list, you will get a lot of good information.  She does giggle during interviews, but you absolutely won't mind, because she's talking to the movers and shakers who make things happen. That's her strength. And she gets points for being happy and having a lovely accent.

Michael Hyatt  Great information about building a platform. Sign up for his email list to get the What's in My Toolbox download and learn about some nice programs (some free, some not)  that will make your life easier.

Business Success Cafe   Weekly 20 minute classes on Thursdays (they are available for one day afterwards if you can't make it)  about lots of topics important to entrepreneurs. Pick and choose what you want to watch, but I'll tell you. I had no desire to teach an online class, watched the video anyway, and learned about Udemy. Now I might try it myself.

Here is the link to Udemy.  It's an easy way to hold an online class. I haven't check the prices out, but I'm sure there is some cost involved.  If you get a lot of attendees, you can make it back!

If you are interested in learning more about web design, the Skillcrush Bootcamp is a 10 day email course for free.  It's geared toward designers, but it's always handy to understand a little more about HTML code.

Build a Business With Your Book  D'vorah Lansky has a 30 day book marketing challenge. I joined it but couldn't keep up. I'll try again. Also, articles about book marketing. 

60 Day MBA   A couple of guys without MBAs figured out everything valuable you need to know, and then they put together a program.   I'm not suggesting you buy the program unless you're motivated, but once you get on their email list, they have some great free webinars. And there are articles on the site.  

Out:Think  This is a business for marketing and launching authors. They owner, Tim Grahl, wrote a book "How to Sell 1,000 copies" and then, when he sold 10,000 copies, gave a valuable seminar. His emails have always been valuable so far, so I would sign up.

Sophie Lizard  She has a blog on freelance blogging (she's a freelance copywriter) and she's the one who started the chain reaction of discovering great marketing/business/writing gurus by introducing me to Danny Iny of Firepole Marketing. And they told two friends... .  She is a smarty-pants and does throw in a few swear words, so be warned.

And because I like to see my taxes at work:

SCORE  is supported by the Small Business Association (SBA).  Tons of free and low cost information, from mentors to webinars to articles. A great resource.  

And don't forget the SBA.  Lots of articles and webinars, and if you locate their affiliate college (it's COC out here) or local office,  you can take live classes--many for free, some at low cost.

That's enough to get you started, I think!