If all you had when you decided to go for your dream of starting an online business was passion, you know the struggle all too well. You even underestimated it and when things started, it’s reality hit you like a bus.

Maybe this isn't for you, it's confusing, there's so much information and things to do and it's plain overwhelming, you can't even figure out what the heck it is that you're doing wrong and your dreams feel like they're running far past you.

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Maybe you were saying this to yourself a few moments ago, and here you are, showing up, giving this journey one more shot, trying to find answers to your question. "What the heck am I not doing or what I am I doing wrong?" because you want this so bad- and here it is. If you're not seeing any proper traction or sales in your business, here are some things might not be doing.

  1. Not embracing your beginner power

No, I'm not playing with you right now. One of your super powers as an entrepreneur is being a beginner no matter what stage you're at - especially if you just started. Often times we get caught up in how other people we admire are doing  and tend to forget that building that seemingly perfect business is months if not years of constantly showing up and working their butts off. We take our eyes off our journeys and all the things there is to be grateful about and learn from right now and end up wasting all our time trying to get to  "expert mode" with the flip of a switch. It doesn't work that way. Starting out and having no experience gives you the opportunity to experiment, make mistakes and learn without the pressure of letting down a large audience or a million dollar client. You can explore your talents, your business and yourself with more ease than if you had reached the fulfillment of your dreams of if you had the attention the person you admire has.

Being a beginner helps you look at your current situations with curiosity and helps you strive to find out what to do to get over a rough time rather than beat yourself up for not being perfect like Mr/Mrs.X like yesterday. Embrace being a beginner, be willing to do the seemingly dirty jobs of asking questions, learning and looking silly now in order to succeed in your endeavors. You have nothing to prove to anyone. Take action for the long term, invest into books, courses, friendships and activities that help you grow your business even if they are not  what's 'cool' or trendy now. If you're taking your time to learn, progress daily and put in the work, embrace your stage and use it as a torch or an adventure that guides and excites you till the next stage of your life/business, and the next, rather than obsessing on where you could've been if you started yesterday, or where someone else is, you'll be getting ahead in your business much faster.

2. Not Acting The Expert

Yes, I know what I said earlier and I'm telling you for a fact that being able to blend the point above with this, would save you a ton. Here, I'm not talking about trying to be the expert by copying someone, being what you're not or losing yourself to make sales. I'm simply talking about playing the part and following the hints successful people leave. Personal Development Guru Tony Robbins  has said before, "Success leaves clues, go find out" That's what I'm asking you to do here. What do the people who are currently top of your industry doing? What are the people whose successes you consider worthy of emulating and even surpassing doing that got them where they are? Do those things. But around such people. The goal here isn't becoming like them, it's emulating the steps that got them to the current stage they're at. So yeah,  are they putting in massive amounts of work? ( which I bet they are). Then do that! What do they use to get certain results, what are they investing their time into? You won’t be doing same and practice your craft like you know they did or even better. Prepare for, act and look the part without trying to be someone else who's already in the part.

Related : 5 things successful people do everyday

3. You’re Not Showing Up Consistently And Being Fully Committed

You know this one right? If you want to be successful at what you do, you can't just show up on the days you feel good and expect your clients to be waiting for you, excited, money-in-hand to solve their problems. Seriously that's the difference between amateur and a pro, and customers want pros. Here's a short excerpt from Steven Pressfield's book "The War of Art" that beautifully captures this idea. I first heard  this excerpt when it was read by Marie Forleo in an audio training, and it's that good!

Shall we?

Now consider the amateur, the aspiring painter, the wanna be playwright. How does he pursue his calling? One, he doesn’t show up every day. Two, he doesn’t show up no matter what. Three, he doesn’t stay on the job all day. He is not committed over the long haul. The stakes for him are illusory and fake. He does not get money. He over identifies with his art. He does not have a sense of humor about his failure. You don’t hear him bitching, this trilogy is killing me! Instead, he doesn’t write his trilogy at all. That’s an amateur.

Well I'm guessing that's not you my dear. So what do we pros do?

We show up every day. We might do it only because we have to, but we do it. We show up every day. We show up no matter what. In sickness and health, come hell or high water, we stagger into the factory. We might do it only so as to not let down our co-workers or for other less noble reasons, but we do it. We show up no matter what. We stay on the job all day. We pick the phone up when it rings, we assist a customer when he seeks our help. We don’t go home until the whistle blows. We are committed over the long haul. Until we hit the lottery, we are part of the labor force. The stakes are high and real for us. This is about survival, feeding our families, educating our children. It’s about eating. We accept remuneration, money, for our labor. We are not here for fun.”

" I think we are here for fun, but you get the point."

We do not over identify with our jobs. We may take pride in our work, we may stay late and come in on weekends, but we recognize we are not our job descriptions. The amateur, on the other hand, over identifies with his vocation, his artistic aspirations. He defines himself by it. He’s a musician, a painter, a playwright. Resistance loves this. Resistance knows the amateur composer will never write his symphony because he’s overly invested in success and over terrified of its failure. The amateur takes it so seriously, it paralyzes him. 8, we master the technique of our jobs. 9, we have a sense of humor about our jobs. And 10, we receive praise and blame in the real world.

I told you it was good.

Like we've established. Pros show up consistently. You know the thing about showing up consistently that actually does the magic trick? Showing up consistently keeps you in the front of the mind of your potential customers. It breeds familiarity which breeds traction and then sales. Engaging with your audience consistently through emails, blogs, podcasts, social media posts or any other way you use with helpful quality help you stay top of their minds, they feel like they know you, they know when to expect your next email or post, they know your personality, they know you're here for them with your content and they know where to reach you, when it's needed, they do because they know you'll respond and genuinely want to help them. Because of this they love and trust you. Now guess who they run to cash-in-hand when they're ready to buy. Yes, you guessed it right. You- the pro.

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4. You’re Showing Up But You’re Not Giving Tons Of Value

       You've probably heard me say this before but I'll say it again. Money is a trust and customers will give it to you only when they can be sure that you can give them it's equivalent or exceeding value in return, and for them, the only way to be sure is to look at your free content, how valuable it is and how well it's done.

If you had a problem today, you'd know exactly which of your friends to talk to about it depending on what issue it was, you don't necessarily have to go through the same thing for the second time to know. You know who'll be supportive and who will give you terrible advice because of who they are and the actions they take. It is so with your customers if you're writing tons of blog posts with fluff and things even a child could figure out, they'll never trust you to give them better enough to put their hard earned money in your hands.

5. You Don’t Have A Solid, Consistent, Well-Designed And Well Thought Out Brand/ Website

Your logo is not all that there is to your brand. Like Seth Godin explains, a brand is set of expectations, and relationships that, taken together, account for a customers decision to choose one product or service over another."  Your brand includes but is not limited to your logo, your brand fonts, your brand colors, the words you use, what you stand for as a business, your products, customer service, these are the things your customers have to say about you, your website and so on. Every one of these should be well thought out to portray your business both visually, audibly and even intangibly (vibe). Then, it should be consistent across all platform. Consistency is what builds the brand. People should know what to expect from you and know how you'll deliver your quality content. They should be able to single you out among other businesses. This also helps them like, trust you and stay loyal you. That's when they get comfortable to buy. Plus, it's a PRO attribute too!

Oh and your website, it's the online headquarters of your brand and that's where your customers will most likely form an impression of you. Make sure it's clean and professional, well thought out and designed to position you as the go-to in your field, and build your email list.

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6. You’re Not Marketing Confidently In the Right Places

Most of us creatives fall for this. We know this cycle all too well. The steps of misery. Lets's go over for our entertainment, shall we? (I mean laughing at one's own mistakes is a good thing right?)

  1. We get an idea on how our skills and knowledge could serve people and make us money.

  2. Lose sleep excitedly over how our new idea is the next big thing and how helpful it is to millions.

  3. We plan and create some content.

  4. Imagine how tons of people will come to our site and never ever leave, fall in love even.

  5. Then we launch our "next big thing". Then boom! Back to bed, sipping a glass of wine and flipping channels on the TV.

   6. Wait! The site might be crashing with the amount of traffic coming all day! Run! *opens website* What's that?  One inquiry and crickets?

7. Then comes in self loathing and self doubt. I thought I put it on my Instagram page that I was launching. I thought my product was good enough. I thought I was good enough.

The truth is darling, that you are, you're just not showing it to your audience. You see, waiting for people to find you is the quickest recipe for lowering yourself esteem in business. If you have a product you know could help people, take it to them. They're too caught up in their problems to find you - and that's a good thing- because you get to confidently show up like the boss angel that you are and take them out of their misery. They'll love and refer you for it!

Confidently show up? Yes you read that right, confidently. Confidence is attractive, it's inspiring, it's persuasive in a good way and that's goal of your marketing, to attract your audience as well as inspire and persuade them to take action. Believe it or not, clients can smell insecurity and will run far from you if you reek of it. Confidence will be the mindset that will help you charge your worth and actually get paid for it. So what are you waiting for? Build that muscle!

So what if you're confidently marketing and not marketing and you're not seeing results? Then One thing is certain. You're not marketing in the right places. As a business owner, it's important to know your ideal owner like that back of your palm. This will cut off a lot of guesswork and help you implement strategies and take actions guaranteed to work. So go back to your idea client exercise and find out where your ideal clients hang out and market there. Marketing everywhere for the heck of it won't make you profitable, it'll just make you frustrated.

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7. You’re Waiting To Build Your Email List

Nothing, and I repeat nothing will drain your efforts to make money in your online business faster than waiting to build your email list. I heard and read this so many times before I started my online business and swore to myself that it was going to be my first action. Then kicked in my perfectionism and I decided to do and perfect #allthethings first. I'll be honest with you. It was the DUMBEST Decision I've ever made. I would literally go back in time and hit old me with a chair in the head. Okay maybe not a chair, that would ruin makeup and months of facial skin care, and that's way too dramatic but I'd still smack the heck out of my silliness back then. Listen to me, choose progress over perfection every, freaking, single, time. I love you too much to waste your time. Done is better than perfect. I'll give you my best tools so you don't get suck at building your list, but listen, even if you make mistakes, you'll learn and you'll gain new perspectives and insights. Who knows, your new discovery can change the face of online marketing, worst case scenario, it'll give you experience to help someone or yourself.

Even on social media, when you want to connect with someone and really engage with them what do you do? You shoot them a direct message. Deep down you understand that following them and liking won't quite cut it. You want to text, call or even meet them to know them better, connect and build your trust for them. It’s the same thing. Your clients might not trust you or feel connected to you enough to buy the first time because your site has rainbows shooting out of their screen. they need to get to know you, they need to trust that their money is safe with you and you need to be the go-to in their minds and that's what an email list and a good email strategy does.

8. You Are Doing EveryThing

Every business is different, just as every business owner is, and the same way certain types of advice may work for others and not you is the same way that certain strategies may not necessarily be beneficial to you. It's not your job to do everything. It's your job to try things out and maintain what works. How? By tracking. Test out your strategies. Use your analytics to see what’s working and do more of it and eliminate what's not working. That's the smart way to go. Then when you find out what works, automate the parts you can. Doing the same things over and over in your business won't necessarily make you better at it in every situation, it could actually make you want to pull your hair out. Implement systems that help you save your time. I mean isn't freedom of time one of the reasons why you're doing business online?

9. You’re Not Investing Into Yourself

Your business is truly, at it's deepest level a reflection of you. Investing in your mind, body and spirit will always always always reflect in your bank account. This may sound hard to believe but look at it  this way. What happens on days when you're mentally depleted, physically sick, emotionally exhausted and spiritually out of tune or on days where you just can't get it together? Barely any work is done at all. Because you need you to run that business. If you're not learning and staying current with the ever swiftly changing business world, if you're not self aware enough to know what works for you and what doesn't, what parts of you need work or healing; if you're not confident enough, taking care of your body enough etc. your business will reflect that and you'll just frustrate yourself forever. Think about the people you admire in your industries, if you're honest enough, you'll admit that some of their strategies are not directly related to business. If you want your business to grow so bad, you need to pay attention to your growth. Pick up a course, invest in a training, get some rest, eat good food, invest in the right friendships - become a better person

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