Personal Productivity Secrets – Part 2

In the first article of this five-part series I left you with an action step. I instructed you to track every activity over the course of one week. You should have data that shows each activity and the amount of time it took to do it. So, by now you have five full days worth of information to process.

So how did you do? Whatever your results were, it is simply a snapshot of how you spend your time. It is time for a closer look and spot the time wasters.

The first time I did this exercise, the results were incredibly enlightening. I found out a lot about myself and the habits I kept. I finally grasped just how much time I spent avoiding the high-value, high-priority items. Incidentally, these items were also the highest paying projects on my plate.

The first surprise was to see how many actual billable or on-the-bench work hours I had during that week. I found out that I wasted more hours than I thought. I had procrastinated on projects a lot. I did a lot of low-value projects that could have been given to others to complete. I ran errands as an excuse to get out of the shop, even though someone else could have accomplished them just as easily. Email and text messages flowed steadily, interrupting the momentum I would again, have to build up. Break times were longer than the 15 minutes allotted and more than a few stretched to a half an hour. All the while rationalizing to myself “I’m the boss. I don’t have to be so strict with my time”.

In general, I discovered a lot of bad habits. Bad habits that were preventing me from producing more. I realized that the income I was earning was coming from less than half of time I spent in the shop. The rest of the time was spent doing jobs that didn’t really focus on my unique skill set. Jobs I should have delegated to another capable person.

So now what do you do with the data you collected? If I were you I would identify all the things that you are currently doing that add little or no value to your income and do one of two things. Delete them. Delegate them. Replace that time with meaningful work that produces tangible results.

In the next article, we will take a look at your daily habits. Which habits you should drop, and which habits you can adopt that will make a huge difference to your daily productivity.

Just Ask These 4 Essential Questions To Find The Best Affiliate Product For You

If you’re just starting out in the internet marketing world, then it’s likely that you’ll turn to affiliate marketing for some quick income. Affiliate marketing is easy to do, once you’ve chosen your product. But from all the offers available, how do you find the best affiliate product for you?

Well, that’s easy too, you just need to answer these four essential questions, to make sure that your affiliate career gets off to a great start!

No.1. Are You Interested In The Product You’re Marketing?

This definitely comes first. Just as when choosing a product to create yourself, you need to pick an affiliate product that you’re interested in or already know about. For example something connected with one of your hobbies or leisure activities, or previous employment.

Having this kind of connection to the affiliate product, will help to bring your personal experience into your promotion and will maintain your own interest when you’re doing your marketing.

You’ll find this of most help if you’re using the regular blogging and article marketing, which is recommended for the best affiliate product promotion. It’s always so much easier to write about something with which you’re familiar, rather than trying to make up a post for something that you don’t know about and have no real interest in. If you do go down that route, you’re likely to find your initial enthusiasm waning quite quickly and your promotional output slipping as well.

No.2. What Is The Commission Rate?

When you’re looking for the best affiliate product, you’re intending to make a profit. That means earning more from sales than you pay out in expenses. So, obviously, the commission rate that’s paid, coupled with the products selling price, is of prime importance.

The way to approach this step to finding the best affiliate product, is to take the subjects that interest you and compare the different affiliate offers in those markets, until you find the higher value products and their commission rates.

Obviously, at any given commission rate, the more expensive the product, the more profit you make. So, generally, the higher value products will be the best bet. However, you’ll also need to assess the product’s saleability as well (No.3.), in order to decide the overall profitability of the product.

This is something to be learnt from experience and a good step right now would be to have a look at the range of offers on ClickBank.com and familiarize yourself with the sales statistics they give for each offer.

No.3. Will The Product Be Saleable?

Here you need to consider the saleability of the product. By that I mean, is it likely to be popular. Is it something that people will want and is it something that your target market will find both affordable and value for money.

These are the key elements that will achieve the product sales, once the prospects have arrived at your site. Another aspect that will make sales easier, is if the product is seen as unique or is easily recognizable to customers, for example by having a brand name or trademark.

Picking a product that has this sort of individuality, will make it easier for you to carry out your search engine optimization and will bring more focused traffic to your site, than will a general product description.

No.4. Is The Product Merchant Well Established?

If you are right at the beginning of your own internet business, the best affiliate product to choose will be one from an established seller. Here you’ll get the benefit of knowing that all the production and commission systems are set up and bug free, and all you need to do is concentrate on making the sales.

Well established merchants will often have good quality sales aids, like ads and banners and sometimes offer affiliate help lines. They’re also more likely to have the benefit of some brand recognition, which will help your own sales and marketing.

So, if you’re ready to start, two of the best known places to take a look at are ClickBank.com and Commission Junction. Take some time and look around these sites to see how they work, what’s on offer and how the commissions are paid.

Then, wherever you choose your product remember to answer these four questions to find the best affiliate offer for you.

Marketing With Personalized Products Gives Your Business Celebrity Status

Does your business or company have the leading edge in marketing and branding today?

Personalized company products, personalized marketing products, corporate promotional items and promotional business gifts are a proven and effective way to market your business, win clients and influence people.

You name it and it will most likely be guaranteed that you can print a logo on it. There are literally thousands of customized products, promotional business gifts and custom corporate gifts available for promotional advertising.

It is a very competitive marketplace today and you need to target new clients or customers, motivate your team, retain staff and stay on top of cutting edge marketing and advertising to enhance brand awareness.

How about that corporate golf tournament or charity golf game? Now here’s an opportunity to showcase your business with personalized golf products and corporate golf gifts. And for that celebratory drink before you hit the clubhouse you can offer your customers or staff their favorite beverage in custom koozies. Stay on par with golf promotional items and make your company an outstanding winner.

Communicate with your marketing team and design your own promotional products package to include a range of custom made products that can make enviable gifts for your most important clients, loyal customers, new business prospects and devoted employees.

Eco-friendly is the buzz now so you make an even bigger impression when you choose eco-friendly personalized bags such as business messenger bags or totes. With the amount of work related traveling that is happening you can make an executive bag and include executive products like custom stress balls, personalized leather products or promotional clocks.

An impressive corporate logo gift or corporate incentive gifts like a personalized embossed leather briefcase will give your business high profile in the boardroom and on the streets. Logo to go anyone!

Stationery has always been a popular favorite with personalized paper products, imprinted pens and custom note pads. For the staff member who spends all their time on the computer and has forgotten how to write with a pen and paper there is everyone’s love of the personalized mugs that save on employee battles in the office kitchen. Personalized calendars will keep those meetings and deadlines on time and you can always look at novelty products when you have your office parties at Christmas and other holiday times throughout the year.

An all time favorite in the personalized advertising campaign has to be the logo products clothing and accessories range. Promotional T shirts have adorned our backs since the birth of industry. Embroidered promotional clothing along with the invention of screen printing have boosted the sales and popularity of personalized shirts, personalized t shirts, custom printed sweatshirts and sweatpants and the most frequently ordered piece of customized merchandise, the baseball cap featuring team or company logo.

How do you make a lasting impression and stay on top in today’s market place? Invest in unique personalized products and business promotional products and remember to reward loyalty and good performance with gifts.