Build an Online Business and Live the Smartphone Lifestyle
When I first started my online business, most of the gurus were talking about building a laptop lifestyle. That brought up vivid images in my head of sipping a piña colada. That sounded great, but what I really wanted to do was solve some of the problems I was facing in my life.
Does being self-employed create freedom?
I used to be a financial consultant. I used to drive over to people's homes and educate them on how to save money and accumulate wealth through compound interest. In the beginning, I felt like I was on a crusade to help the middle class get out of debt and build a brighter future.
Around that time, I had my first kid. Trying to drive over to people's homes throughout the day, and having a dynamic schedule based on other people's time started to suck. I realized that I didn't have the freedom that I was seeking. I felt like I wasn't in control of my business and that my prospective customers had control over my life, time, and financial destiny.
After reading a book called Rich Dad, Poor Dad, I realized that I needed to use leverage more. The author, Robert Kiyosaki, released a whole Rich Dad series. I read almost every book the guy released and the one that stuck in my head through the years was called Cashflow Quadrant. If you're into financial freedom, then I suggest checking both of those books out.
There were 4 parts of the quadrant. Being employed, self-employed, being a business owner, and being an investor. Without being too verbose, I'll just tell you that being self-employed isn't always so dreamy. Most people in that quadrant create a jail cell for themselves, and they don't have a system that allows them to create income when they're not actively working in it.
To make a long story short, that financial consulting business that I was in was part of that self-employed quadrant.
When my son was born, he didn't want to sleep when we wanted. He was awake whenever he felt like it. So if he wanted to go to sleep at 4 AM and then wake up at 6 AM, that was totally up to him. Then he would go to sleep at some other oddball time of the day.
The life-changing moment
While Eric was sleeping on my lap one night, I was in an awkward position trying to browse the net using my non-dominate hand. I started reading about everyday people making money online. It wasn't about opportunity meetings or chasing after my friends and family. It was all about attracting people online, and referring people to offers that they were interested in.
It was affiliate marketing.
If you've never heard of it before, let me give you an example. Let's say Amazon is offering the latest, coolest gaming system. A bunch of people will search for it online. Then, what if somebody searches for it and finds information about it, clicks on a link, and buys it?
If that person that provided that information is an affiliate of Amazon, they would earn commission for referring that customer.
That's just one example. Many stores like Macy's, Walmart, and even travel websites like Travelocity offer affiliate programs.
When an affiliate signs up for an affiliate program, they get a tracking link that is unique to them. That will allow them to see their clicks and sales through the company's affiliate portal.
My business overhaul
From that point, I decided to transition from my traditional business to a digital one.
While I could remember that moment vividly, that was close to 20 years ago.
Since then, I've undergone several iterations of my business model. I learned the original approach from my late, great coach, James Martell. If you've ever heard of the concept of building niche websites to make money, the guy was a legend in that space. He was one of the pioneers of using Google and other search engines to send visitors to websites that were monetized with affiliate websites and display ads.
Does that system still work today?
Most of it does, with some simple guidelines.
What I'm going to share with you now is what's working today and what some of those guidelines are.
The Smartphone Money System
Remember the laptop lifestyle? While I still do work on my laptop, I've been spending more time on my smartphone, and I'm sure that many other people are doing the same around the world.
From a business perspective, there are a lot of reasons to use your smartphone to build your online business.
Here are 10 reasons to build a smartphone lifestyle business:
1) It's affordable
2) It's not too complicated
3) You can use it to build your business in just about any place in the world
4) You can build your business without calling people
5) You can work at your own pace
6) You can tap into other systems to scale
7) You don't need to attend meetings (unless you really want to)
8) You can build a business that doesn't require any inventory
9) It helps remove the excuses since you have the minimum requirements to build your business
10) You can start building your business today if you wanted to
The guidelines for building a smartphone-based business
1) Create content that people want to share. When I first built my business, I was focused on making Google happy. While that's still important, focus on your audience's needs. That means that you should create valuable content for the people that are consuming your content.
2) Build the know, like, and trust factor. You'll need to build your K.L.T. factor as much as you can. That means using visuals of yourself and audio. That can take the form of audio recordings, pictures of yourself, or videos. "Getting yourself out there" and building credibility is more important now than it was in the past.
3) Use technology that is compatible with your smartphone. You'll need to use applications that either have a mobile app, or are designed for smartphone interfaces. The truth is that many feature-rich software platforms aren't designed with the mobile-first philosophy. That means that it can be cumbersome to build your business if you choose the wrong tech stack. For example, if I wanted to build web pages on my smartphone, I'd rather do it using Phonesites compared to using WordPress or Groove.cm.
4) Build relationships with people in your industry. This includes prospective customers, your current customers, and your competitors. It's still true that you don't need to call people or attend meetings. You can do this through social media, email marketing, or both.
Frequently Asked Questions
1) How long does it take to build a smartphone-focused business?
If you only have a smartphone and nothing else, you can still get started within the next hour. Your smartphone can be used to create valuable content on platforms like TikTok, YouTube, and Twitter.
2) Why is a smartphone lifestyle better than a laptop lifestyle?
Using a smartphone for my business was a personal choice. I love to travel globally and like to travel light. With a smartphone business, you can build a lean business without the bloat. However, you can still use your laptop or desktop to do things that require them.
Also, with a smartphone business, I don't have any excuse to not build my business. This helps with my mindset and helps me build my business. In the online business arena, you can be your worst enemy. If you can do what it takes to remove excuses, then the more productive you'll be.
3) What if English is my second language? Can I still build this kind of business?
Yes. You don't need to build a business in English. However, if you want to tap into the English market, you can outsource content creation using Upwork.com or use software tools that can assist you. You can use something like Grammarly. I personally use Linguix.
4) How many hours do I need each week to build a smartphone business?
If you're focused on building a business using social media, then it just takes less than 1-10 minutes to create a post. If you're using TikTok, 1 video a day is great. Each video is roughly 15-30 seconds long.
5) Can I still do this without showing my face or if I have privacy issues?
Yes you can. It might take longer to build up the know, like, and trust factor, but it's still doable. Some of the most popular book authors have used pseudonyms. For example, look up books by Robert Galbraith. Robert is J.K. Rowling, the author behind the Harry Potter series.
6) How do I sign up for an affiliate program to promote affiliate offers?
One easy way to get started is to use a network that is connected with many companies. This will allow you to promote a wide variety of offers. If you use shopping affiliate network, then you can connect with some of the top companies on the net.