Celebrating 20 Years In Business

And other August Milestones

Before this month comes to a close, I want to acknowledge how awesome August is in the life of Michelle. I’m celebrating  FOUR major anniversaries.

FIVE years ago, my first book hit number 1 on the Amazon Bestseller list.

TEN years ago, a number of things happened.  I quit my corporate sales training job, built out my speaking business and expanded my marketing consultancy.  AND I started working with Kelly Anderson at Startup Princess (and got my first social media account). I ran my own agency and promotional products company not the side for years, but this year, with a baby in tow, I went on my own and built partnerships that changed my business and life forever.

FIFTEEN years ago, I married my husband. Good Stuff.

TWENTY years ago, I started my first business, Doodads Promotional Products.  It was 20 years ago this month when I started my entrepreneurial story.  This business isn’t my life’s mission, but it’s run “in the black” every year since it’s inception and it has funded EVERY other of my business ventures.  When I needed to produce and record my first speaking event, I sold more pens, mugs and t-shirts to pay for the production company.  When I needed a new website for a new venture, I sold some folders and CD cases to a long time client.

I don’t promote this business anymore, but I do try to keep existing customers happy and 100% of my business comes from repeat customers or referral each year.  I’m still grateful for this company that practically raised me.  I was 19 when I started it.  Doodads taught me about business to business marketing.  It taught me about tangible marketing and campaigns.  It taught me about systems and hiring help so that I could focus on revenue generating activities.  It taught me about competition and differentiation and that people weren’t just buying a pen, they were buying me.  It taught me about customer service and it taught me about myself. I have said many times, owning a business is the best personal development tool EVER.

So, in these final hours before it’s September, I acknowledge the Augusts of my life.  Without which I would be monumentally different.  Too bad I didn’t do anything incredibly awesome this year so that I could add to this list in five more years for the 5, 10, 15, 20, 25.  LOL

Here’s to August!

Jimmy Fallon – Race Through New York

And Race Through LIFE - A Universal Orlando Resort Revelation

Have you been to Universal Orlando Resort this year? They just unveiled the new Jimmy Fallon Race Through New York ride and it was my fave.

But let me back up…

Some people cried the day Jay Leno turned the reigns of The Tonight Show over to Jimmy Fallon.  I, too, was skeptical.  I had heard of him but I wasn’t a SNL superfan.

I quickly turned and became an avid fan.  We record every Tonight Show and while we don’t watch every show, I watched the Billy Joel do-whop the day it happened.  I shared when he did a sketch with my favorites on Full House.

There’s no question he’s skilled at sketch writing and comic delivery.

There’s no question he does an excellent job interviewing even the toughest of guests.

There’s no question he has a brilliant way of making himself and other celebrities feel “real”.  When Fallon and Cameron Diaz took photobomb pictures on top of the Empire State Building…I smiled from ear to ear.

But do you know what I like best about Jimmy Fallon? That he has the best job on the earth, and he knows it.  Not out of pride and I’m-better-than-you way.  It’s a humble, I’m-the-luckiest-kid-on-the-block way and he works every day to be the best.  THAT’s why I like watching him.  It’s a humble pride I wish every celebrity would possess.

I will always think he has the coolest show on television and I dream of one day sitting on his couch talking about my book or breaking eggs over my head and pinching myself at the same time.

I know he’s not perfect, and I know he knows he’s not perfect.

What a great way to live! I know we can’t all be Jimmy Fallon’s and we can’t all be late night TV hosts.  But what if we all took the same approach to what we do and infuse the world with more humble pride?  Sometimes we give pride a bad wrap, but there’s an element of it that’s worthy and noble.  I even dedicate a chapter in my book to the good kind of “Pride” and confidence we all need to do life.

Maybe with all that backstory it explains while I love the ride.  Here’s my honest testimonial of Jimmy Fallon’s Race Through New York:

Jimmy Fallon was my favorite ride this year at Universal Orlando Resort. I’m a total Harry Potter person and love the Wizarding World of Harry Potter but Jimmy Fallon’s Race Through New York was my fave this year. My expectations were high and yet totally exceeded. Everything from the behind the scenes feel, the walk through NBC Studios, the Entertainment while you wait, and the ride itself. I loved the unexpected turns and things flying at me. Makes me need a real trip to New York to see the Jimmy Fallon Show. My kids still quote lines from “Sara”. “S-A-R-A with no H because H’a are eww”. Later on in my trip my favorite part of the afternoon parade was that Hashtag the Panda watched from the 3rd Floor. Well done Universal!

Truthfully, It would have been better if they let me down.  That Jimmy Fallon needed to be knocked off the pedestal I created for him (I’m KIDDING).

Race to Universal Orlando Resort and RACE to Jimmy Fallon’s Race Through New York.

As much as I loved getting hit in the face with Pizza and talking with Sara about puppies, the next stop for me, the ACTUAL New York City and the ACTUAL Jimmy Fallon in Real Life.

24058843_10214867287545812_4524932210068381031_n

What to Do If Your Kid is A Cyber Bully (AND How to Prevent Your Kid From Becoming a Bully)

KSL Browser 5.0 TV Segment

October is National Bullying Awareness Month and with a cell phone in the hands of almost every teen, the subject of cyber bullying deserves attention and discussion.

In yesterday’s post we talked about what to do if your kid is getting bullied online.  Today, we’re talking about what to do if your kid is the instigator (AND a few thoughts about how to prevent it from happening in the first place).

What to Do About Cyber Bullying

KSL Browser 5.0 TV Segment

October is National Bullying Awareness Month and with a cell phone in the hands of almost every teen, the subject of cyber bullying deserves attention and discussion.

If your kid is being bullied:

  1. Take it offline – but ACT
    1. Remember the 3 Ds – Document, Discuss, Delete
  2. Make adjustments to schedules and activities.
  3. Make sure they get additional help and support if needed.

Check out our next post for what to do if your kid is the bully and how to prevent your kid from becoming a bully in the future.

Announcing Dates for 4th Annual Marketing Blueprint Workshop

Learn the Latest in Marketing Strategy AND Write Your 2018 Marketing Plan in TWO Strategic Days

I’m excited to announce the dates of the 2017 Marketing Blueprint Workshop

Final details, registration, pricing and location will be coming.  For NOW, save the date!

November 30th & December 1

2018 is coming, is your business ready to grow? The Marketing Blueprint Workshop (in it’s 4th year) is designed to do two things: first, you’ll learn the latest in marketing tactics, and second we’ll walk you through creating your own marketing plan for 2018 in two days.

At this event you’ll ALSO get:
-The Marketing Playbook – the digital marketing planning tool! (A $197 value!)
-10 Ready-to-go Market Plays (New this year!)

At this event you’ll learn:
– How to Balance Traditional & Emerging Marketing Strategies
– The 2/2/15 Social Media Business Blueprint – Updated & Expanded for 2018 (How to effectively marketing your business via social media in 2 hours a year, 2 hours a month and 15 minutes a day! You’ll also learn how we grew our following on twitter to over 320,000 followers!)
– How to Create a Simple yet effective online Content Strategy
– How to TRACK your campaigns so you can evaluate their effectiveness
– Create a Marketing PLAN That will help you GROW Your Sales this year & NEXT

This event was designed to help you create your marketing vision AND give you the tools and resources to create the plan you need to take ACTION on your marketing strategies every day.

Each session will be taught by Michelle McCullough

Michelle McCullough started her first business when she was 19 and currently runs 3 companies including consulting businesses all over the world. She is the author of three books including “The Make It Happen Blueprint”. A seasoned speaker, Michelle teaches success principles and leadership insights that help boost employee engagement and higher performance.

In addition to running her own consulting businesses, Michelle is the managing director for Startup Princess, listed by Forbes as “One of the top 10 resources for Women Entrepreneurs”. She’s worked with top brands like Visa Small Business, UPS Store, AWeber and more. She’s spoken for the Air Force Reserve, Goldman Sachs and Ancestry.com, among others. She’s been featured in entrepreneur.com, in the 40 under 40, Fox TV and has been interviewed for television and radio over 100 times, including Good Morning America and The Today Show. She was recently named in the Top 100 Small Business Influencers with Inc Magazine, Michael Gerber and Grant Cardone. Her own radio show “Make It Happen” has over 1 million downloads.

Online Marketing Lessons from Brendon Burchard

Why I Own 4 Copies of His Book

online-marketing-lessons-from-bendon-burchard

Is the book that good?

I was introduced to Brendon Burchard when The Millionaire Messenger first came out – before it was a New York Times Best Seller. I bought his book through his site during his launch period.

A little bit later, he offered the book on Kindle, and I bought it electronically because he offered an AMAZING bonus I couldn’t say no to. I HAD ALREADY READ THE BOOK!

THEN, a little bit later, he sent another email telling people to buy his book on Audio CD and if you did, you’d get ANOTHER four part video series from him. So I bought the Audio CD. I’ve actually listened to it many times in my car, even though I had already read the printed version.

Then I got the physical paperback book one more time when I was part of a mastermind with Brendon Burchard himself. There’s a great marketing lesson in here.

Yep, I’m a sucker. In my defense, his offers were GOOD – worth it. I share this example when I speak on marketing as a great example about bonus offers and I often joke that Brendon should just put the subject line on all of his emails: “Get out your credit cards, suckers!” because I’ve been to 4 of his live events, purchased many of his digital programs, bought ALL of his books (MULTIPLE TIMES), and attended a small group high ticket mastermind with him in Portland.

 Smart guy.

Truth be told I enlisted the help of a friend (the smart and awesome Tiffany Peterson) to keep me from buying any more Brendon Burchard. I told her I needed a sponsor – I was an addict. I asked if I could call her before I made any more BB purchases and she agreed to do me this service and hide my credit cards. When I called to tell her about the small group mastermind, she didn’t talk me out of it she said, “Sign me up – and you sign up, too!” Ha! She did NOT save me any money, but we DID have an awesome experience. No regrets.

I’ve learned a lot from Brendon over the years, and I’ve had the opportunity to implement many of his teachings. This month during my book launch I implemented many of his tips. They were successful, too because I was on the Hot New Releases list for 4 weeks! (During launch week I was #4 only beat by 3 different versions of Tony Robbin’s recent release “Unstoppable”. He truly was unstoppable. Ha!)

Like Brendon I launched my book with some bonuses, and many took advantage of the offer. Like Brendon, I offered different bonuses at different times to get people to purchase the book.

Why?

I wrote my book so people will read it. I want to get it into as many hands as I possibly can. I want people to enjoy it and find something in the book that will help them achieve the goals and dreams they have in their heads.

I also know people are busy and they already have a stack of books on their nightstand (please tell me I’m not the only one) competing for their precious reading time. So I needed to overcome that objection.

It worked.

The bonus periods made my book an Amazon Best Seller even before launch day. 🎉

And “Make It Happen Blueprint” stayed on the Amazon Hot New Releases for the entire 30 days possible.

I’ll take that as a win.

I know this is just the beginning.  I want my book to exist long past the launch period.

What other lessons can you learn from this?

#1 You don’t always have to discount to get people to buy. Figure out how to add value to the equation.

#2 Brendon is a machine but he’s built a loyal following by adding value above and beyond his bonuses. I knew his courses were going to be good because he did a good job of advertising exactly how he could help me. I also enjoyed his videos, emails and blog posts and wanted more because they were good.

#3 It’s good to know what will hold people back from saying yes. Think through all the possible objections and overcome them before the customer even has a chance to voice them.

#4 If you have something good, don’t be afraid to share it with the world. Nothing has ever felt more vulnerable than writing down my thoughts and publishing thousands of copies so people could read them. While I’m thrilled with the success my book has had to this point it wasn’t without hours of doubt.  Good things push you past your comfort zone.

If you want to see how I structured my latest book bonus you can see it here: get my book.

make-it-hppen-blueprint-workbook-series

Want more tips and advice on marketing or high performance?

Check out my FREE video series on YouTube – there are no strings attached.

If you have read my book, I’d love for you to join our growing virtual book club on Facebook.

P.S. If you’re a business owner, you may like the two day virtual event I’m hosting with 8 other amazing business owners. There’s no charge to attend (and you can watch from anywhere), check it out and register here.

Dust off the Super Hero Cape, Ladies! It’s your time!

You are living in a revolution. Women business owners are taking OVER!

According to the 2016 State of Women Owned Businesses Report (link) http://www.womenable.com/content/userfiles/2016_State_of_Women-Owned_Businesses_Executive_Report.pdf

“As of 2016, it is estimated that there are now 11.3 million (11,313,900) women-owned businesses in the United States, employing nearly 9 million people (8,976,100) and generating over $1.6 trillion ($1,622,763,800,000) in revenues. “

  • The number of women owned firms is up by 45%
  • Our revenues have increased by 35% (higher than the national average)
  • AND the number of firms owned by women of color is up by 45%

It’s official ladies!  We are amazing!  So dust off that super hero cape and join the League of Extraordinary Women

This virtual business growth symposium is all about building the community, resources, and education for our sisters in business.

Join us on Friday April 28- Saturday April 29th

10 am- 6 pm Eastern

Stream live from your home or office computer

You’ll learn:

Business skills and resources

How to build stronger networks. It’s time to replace the “good old boys club” with powerhouse women’s networks

How to increase your vision for what is possible in your business

AND wealth creation strategies

Don’t miss this event!  We want you on board!

P.S. You know how you tell everyone when you discover an amazing new restaurant?  Or a great deal on shoes?  This symposium will be just as great!  Tell your friends before registration closes.

league-of-extraordinary-women-banner-1