Archive for the ‘Book review’ Category

 

How to Systemize Your Life for Success

Tuesday, April 22nd, 2014

In life, we place so much emphasis on goals. Setting goals, reaching goals, making new goals.

While goal setting is great and pretty essential – you have to know where you’re going to get there – exclusively focusing on the goal is not that effective. In fact, it makes us feel like a failure over and over for not having yet reached our goal even if we are making improvements and progress.

I learned how important setting up systems are over goals this year thanks to a book that I was first considering reading after I saw it in the  top selling list on the iTunes Bookstore and then knew I had to read it once I saw Charles Ngo’s post about it on his blog. The name of the book is How to Fail at Almost Everything and Still Win Big. The author, who’s the creator of Dilbert, has a chapter where he talks about the importance of systems over goals because a system allows you to just focus on the task at hand. As long as you follow the system and do what you’re supposed to do everyday, you’ll be successful! This is compared to people focusing on goals and ultimately becoming flustered and unmotivated because day after day they still haven’t reached their ultimate goal.

Here are just some of the systems I’ve set up or am in the process of setting up to achieve my goals.

– I’ve hired a personal trainer that I work out with 5-6 days a week. This eliminates any daily mental struggle of whether I should go to the gym or not. There’s no question I’m going to the gym and there’s no question that there will be results because going to the gym 5-6 days a week continually will produce results. People tell me I’m throwing my money away, but I’d rather go to the gym and learn to do things in the most efficient and effective manner than wastes months or years trying to figure it out on my own without seeing great results. When you can, pay the expert. This goes for a lot of things.

– House cleaning. I use a service called HandyBook.com and they allow you to schedule cleanings, household repairs, furniture assembly – all through your phone. I have my apartment taken care of once a week so that I don’t have to waste mental energy all week long thinking about how messy my place is getting and procrastinate on taking care of it, which wastes even more energy. I’d rather not have to think about it and having a clean, organized place leads to more clean and organized work from what I’ve seen. My desk is not cluttered, I can find what I want from the closet (most times), and I’m not spending hours per week cleaning and that time can go towards building my business. I do the same for laundry, another major time-consuming activity.

– I haven’t done this one yet, but I’d like to systemize my meals in an effort to save time and be healthier. Thanks to the wonderful/horrible app Seamless, ordering food in NYC is incredibly easy. Whip up the app, order what you’d like, and it shows up at your door with no messy handling of cash involved. The problem is you still have to think about what you want to eat :) There are a few meal delivery services available in NYC and many are focused on healthy eating, which is what I want. That way, there’s no reason to think about cheating on a meal or not eating healthy – I simply don’t give myself the choice. I also don’t waste half an hour debating whether I want to have Thai for lunch or Turkish. The decision’s already made and mental energy is saved for more important decisions.

 

These are just some of the ways to systemize and automize different parts of your life so you automatically focus on the “doing” part as opposed to constantly focusing on the end-result only to never be satisfied. You can literally do this for any facet of your life. Take for example:

  • Goal: Read more   System: Join a book club.
  • Goal: Make new friends   System: Join a weekly outing / social group based on a common interest
  • Goal: Lose 10 lbs   System: Figure out exactly how many calories you need to eat per day to lose 10 lbs in your desired timeframe and stick to that. Don’t just focus on the number on the scale everyday and wonder why it’s not moving. Have a meal plan and workout plan and force yourself to stick to it via personal trainer, auto-delivery of healthy groceries, or a meal delivery service.
  • Goal: Make $5,000 a day in AM. System: Launch 1 campaign a day in a vertical that has the potential to make you $5,000 per day. Start with getting it profitable and figure out how to scale it. Launch, optimize, learn, and repeat. Don’t just refresh stats all day.

As you can see, you can pretty much systemize any facet of your life as well as any goal that you may have. People place too much emphasis on the desired end-result. Instead, simplify your focus and only worry about whether you’ve accomplished what your system has laid out for you and design your life so that there’s no way to escape your system or at least very difficult.

Systems + Accountability = Achieved Goals.

50 Cent on Affiliate Marketing Part 2

Wednesday, June 8th, 2011

Okay so instead of making this “series” a post-by-post thing for each chapter I’ve decided to do put a few together. Otherwise you guys might be waiting a very long time lol. Again, go pick up The 50th Law by Robert Greene and 50 Cent to learn more about these ideas.

Chapter 2- Make Everything Your Own – Self-Reliance

In this business we rely on a lot of entities. We really on affiliate networks, advertisers, traffic sources, and more. 50 advocates becoming as self-reliant as you possibly can because when you work for others, you’re at their mercy. You don’t own your work. This sort of dependency is especially risky in a world where people are hooked to their 9-5 jobs and have no other source of income. It can apply to us affiliate marketers too, however. We’re constantly faced with offers going down, traffic sources banning advertisers, and affiliate networks going bankrupt. In order to be self-reliant, we have to think outside the box whether that means launching our own offer, working direct with a reputable advertiser, or building your own traffic source.

Chapter 3- Turn Shit into Sugar – Opportunism

This chapter mostly talks about taking a perceived negative situation and turning it into something positive. It’s how you look at things that matters. The fact that you’re at a perceived disadvantage might actually be an advantage and forces you to be more inventive than the next guy. As marketers, we’re all opportunistic. We take advantage of everything from the NBA Finals to the death of Michael Jackson and use that the profiteer. Keeping our finger on the pulse and watching trends is what we do. 50 says when you have nothing to lose and fear absolutely nothing is when you perform the best. This explains why when we’re starting out and having nothing to lose we take the greatest risks.

Chapter 4- Keep Moving – Calculated Momentum

This chapter basically talks about how micromanaging is a bad idea and how we continually have to adapt to our changing environment. We have to stop trying to control things and move with the chaos. This means learning how to move beyond flogs as a way to advertise or discovering new traffic sources. Things are always going to be changing in our industry and the Internet evolves and as regulations come into place…it’s our job to maneuver and adapt with that change. Be fluid, and don’t try to dominate using force.

Chapter 5- Know When to Be Bad – Aggression

This chapter talks about how sometimes it’s necessary to be aggressive. Too many times we take the nice route when someone is taking something or keeping us from something because we’re too afraid to be upfront and aggressive. People will try to stop you and take your power from you aggressively or passive aggressively. This can play out in our industry as well. A lot of times affiliate managers push a slew of new “hot” offers on us and we take their word for it instead of being more aggressive and trying to find out every tidbit we can from our affiliate managers to help make our campaigns successful. Some affiliates never ask for a pay bump or even know that they can sometimes get a higher payout if they just ask provided they’re bringing in quality volume. Don’t be afraid to leverage your strengths…if you’re making someone money and driving quality traffic, don’t be shy to ask for a bump. There are plenty of networks and plenty of offers where you could be sending your traffic…use that to your advantage. There’s a whole slew of ways being more aggressive can be to your advantage…from networking, to outbidding, to making bigger and bolder media buys than the other guy.

 

That’s it for part 2…let me know if you’re finding this interesting and I’ll make for a part 3 very soon.

P.S. There is no affiliation between this blog and 50 Cent or Robert Greene (sorry gotta protect my ass in case 50 comes at me lol)

Meeting Randal Pinkett

Wednesday, February 28th, 2007

On Monday I met with the one and only Randal Pinkett, winner of The Apprentice and author of Campus CEO. I have to say that just from meeting him for a few minutes that he is a really cool guy. I shook his hand and then told him about I had learned of his book from the Campus CEO competition a couple months ago and decided to pick it up after David Askaripour of MindPetals told me we got mentioned in there. I told him I wrote for MindPetals and he was really impressed and asked me to write a review for his book on my blog and try to get some coverage on MindPetals about the book. I told him sure thing, without a doubt. He was cool enough to sign my copy of Campus CEO and I gave him a card for Walamu and told him about how I started it at Rutgers last semester and he seemed pretty impressed. This is considering Mr. Pinkett also went to Rutgers and started his business here all while graduating with a 3.9 GPA and being on the track team. Mr. Pinkett is truly an inspiration to me and I’m sure to the many others that will pick up a copy of his new book, Campus CEO.

To get started on building your own business empire while still in college, get your copy of Mr. Pinkett’s book here: Campus CEO.

P.S. I have an extra copy of Campus CEO since my order from Amazon came in a day after Randal was at the signing. If you have any suggestions on what I should do with this extra copy by means of some sort of crazy give away competition, leave a comment.

The Web 2.0 Effect

Sunday, January 7th, 2007

The Web 2.0 Effect

(aff.)
With so many e-books out there today, the good ones are really few and far between. The priceless ones are even more rare. The Web 2.0 Effect is clearly one of the latter. This book was not written merely for the purpose of making a quick buck on the Internet, but rather really makes a sense of all the hype out there and let’s the reader know what exactly makes sites like Facebook and YouTube a success. If you are an entrepreneur or own a Web 2.0, this is an absolute must read. There have been too many failures by companies trying to mock the success of the now few behemoths in the Web 2.0 world to think that you already know what it takes. Don’t look over the most important aspect of your business: the way it’s execution. The information found in this ebook is absolutely invaluable to the success of your business and if you miss out on even the small stuff in this book, you’ll be very behind.

Marketing Outrageously

Tuesday, July 11th, 2006

My apologies for the recent lack of posting. I have a guest blogger that’ll have something for you guys pretty soon.

Marketing Outrageously; that’s the name of the book I just finished reading and I have to say it really gave me a different aspect on marketing and saved me from pursuing the typical bland marketing strategies we are all used to. The core message in Marketing Outrageously was to device a marketing campaign that is so outrageous and so shocking that you think it would never fly. The same message goes to the people putting together your marketing plan. Tell them that you want to hear an idea from them that they are sure you would never approve of. The book is written by Jon Spoelstra, who spent 20 years with the NBA most notably as the President and COO of the New Jersey Nets. A brief bio is available on Jon Spoelstra at http://www.usdreams.com/Spoelstra.html and I highly encourage you to at least skim through it. Would you believe that he used to be a shy guy? Find out what he did to overcome his fear of speaking and become a sales and marketing phenom.

Spoelstra outlines several marketing stunts in the book that proved highly successful. Some of the outrageous ideas highlighted in the book included having every man, woman, and child at a Nets game receive a free pair jockstraps (!). Another was to send a rubber chicken with a small note thank you attached to it to anyone who bought season tickets. A lot of these seem way out of the box, but that’s what Spoelstra is all about. Marketing outrageously is what will get you noticed with consumers as well as with public relations. There is nothing more powerful than shock-value to get the attention of potential consumers. Taking an unconventional route towards marketing is perhaps the only free lunch you get in marketing. The only problem is a lot of people are afraid to take that free lunch.

I’ve been coming up with my own ways to market outrageously with Walamu.com. So far I have some good ideas and others that people have told me would be going too far. Maybe that’s exactly what I need to do 😉

I have several marketing stunts lined up and I will surely blog about them as I execute them. I can’t wait to see the look on people’s faces.
Have any outrageous marketing ideas especially for the college market? Ever pull off a spectacular marketing stunt? Feel free to let me know about it in the comments.

Focus

Friday, June 30th, 2006

In the past few weeks I’ve really spread my energy over a multitude of things. Among these include starting www.writeonmyboard.com, the Walamu pre-launch blog, this blog, and the pixel ads. Right now the most important thing is getting Walamu off the ground so that’s what I’m going to be focusing on the most. I’m really excited about the launch and focused on getting out there quickly and executing as well as possible.

As for my stocks, I made a few changes yesterday. I sold two of my stocks at a loss only because I needed the funding for Walamu and I knew I wasn’t going to make much anyway considering my position in both stocks was very small. If I had at least $1,000 invested in each company I probably would have held on. Nonetheless, one of my stocks FMD is nearing $60 as I had predicted in one of my previous posts. I am still holding on to this stock as I believe it has the potential to go a bit higher.

I also just finished reading The 11 Immutable Laws of Internet Branding, by Al Ries and Laura Ries. The book is a must-read for anyone wanting to start an Internet business. I’ve learned a lot about what to do and what not to do from this and have even been talking to the authors about my own business. That’s it for now, but stay tuned because Walamu is going to be a heck of a ride.

Review: The Student Success Manifesto

Monday, June 26th, 2006

Think there’s a difference between being an entrepreneur and an extreme entrepreneur?

Read The Student Success Manifesto, by Michael Simmons, and you’ll find out there certainly is. Simmons, winner of three entrepreneur of the year awards, let’s us in on his Extreme Entrepreneur mindset. In his book, the ever-enterprising Simmons reveals what the extreme entrepeneur needs to do in order properly leverage their tangible and intangible assets to create a life of passion, purpose, and prosperity.

Having been a keynote speaker on entrepreneurship, Simmons does a fascinating job of bringing to the readers the true value in finding what you are passionate about and doing that for the rest of your life. He goes against the conventional wisdom of the educational system and for all the right reasons. This book is a must read for anyone who finds true value in doing what they are passionate about and not just because it’s the “next step” in life. Even if starting a business is not your area of interest, reading The Student Success Manifesto will most definitely open up your mind and let you see all the possibilities that are out there for you, as well as give you the ability to unlock your potential.

Simmons not only preaches the Extreme Entrepreneur mindset, he lives it. In his effort to find out what he was passionate about and what he wanted to do in life he took a semester off from NYU going against the opinions of people such as his counselor and his mother. He did so with good reason as well considering the numerous awards he has won. Simmons does a fantastic job of bringing his real life experiences and discoveries to his readers. If there was ever a book that would give you a distinct advantage over your classmates, it would most certainly be The Student Success Manifesto. Speaking from experience, I highly recommend purchasing “The Manifesto” for your bookshelf just in case you ever need a little refresher.

Go Big or Go Home

Tuesday, May 16th, 2006

That’s the title of the book I’m currently reading and it’s written by Wil Schroter (Go Big or Go Home by Wil Schroter). I was actually given a free copy by Wil so I can give him some feedback on it. I’m actually in the middle of it right now and I must say it’s a great read. If you’ve ever wondered how companies like Google and MySpace have made it so big in such a short amount of time, this is the book to read. It provides great insight as to how it is the perfect time for a start up if you position yourself right and grow appropriately with the correct business model. It’s all about scalability and profitability accompanied with growth. I highly recommend his work as even if you don’t plan to start anything it still lets you in on what makes companies like Google so successful in such a short period of time.

Go Big or Go Home by Wil Schroter

In other news, I cashed in all my change from my change jar from the previous school year and landed a fresh $20 bill straight from the bank. Of course, that $20 is going straight to the oil companies as I fill up my gas guzzling V6 at $3 a gallon. Still worth it, I think (both the saving up change and the car). I really do suggest keeping a change jar as it really does add up. No way was I expecting $20, more like 9 or 10. Try dumping change you have in your pockets at any given moment into your change jar, and it should really add up.

Finally, I want to mention that I do want to make this an interactive blog. I appreciate all the early support I’ve been getting from readers all over the world and I certainly do appreciate any comments you leave as I would love to hear what you think about my journey to financial freedom. Feel free to make suggestions as to what you want to hear more of in my posts and what not. Let me know and keep those comments comin’.

 
Hi, I'm Rohail, affiliate marketer and serial entrepreneur. Follow my trials and triumphs in affiliate marketing as I give you an inside look at the industry and what it takes to be successful.

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