The shoe/sneaker resale market is very lucrative, and with exclusive sneakers releasing frequently, insiders estimate that this secondary market is currently valued at around $6bn. While only 4% of shoes and sneakers are purchased upon release for resale, the market benefits from hustlers and entrepreneurs looking to pounce on the huge margins to be made.

Limited edition shoes

Certain limited-issue shoes are released for sale by a major shoe company, usually Nike or Adidas. They can be associated with an athlete, hip-hop star pr even a movie. Three examples of the Hip-Hop/sneaker collaboration are the Nike Air Yeezy 2 “Red October”, Adidas Yeezy Boost 350 “Turtledove” and Air Jordan 1 x Off-White “Chicago”.

Air Jordan 1 x Off-White Chicago
Air Jordan 1 x Off-White Chicago

Most shoes would actually fetch less than retail at resell. However, the above shoes were all released in limited editions retailing at $190-$240, with the resale value averaged between $1,695–$6,118, per Stock X.

Essentially hype and rarity are what makes these shoes ‘limited edition’.
If a shoe is hyped but not rare, anyone can get their hands on a pair for retail and you won’t make any money. If a shoe is rare but not hyped, nobody can get their hands on a pair, but nobody cares — and you won’t make any money. So if you get your hands on shoes that are both full of hype and rare – you’re in the sweet spot.

You can buy certain sneakers at retail price and sell them on a secondary market for at least 2-3 times the retail price.

Why are they worth so much?

19-year old Brandon Webb has made a living by taking advantage of the high-ticket sneaker reseller market. He is the founder of Hypluxe, a members-only community that teaches sales secrets of the massive secondary market for limited-edition sneakers.

He explains to Entrepreneur.com – “It all comes down to supply and demand. Companies like Nike and Adidas release exclusive sneakers in collaboration with celebrities and artists like Virgil Abloh and Kanye West, as well as updated versions of classic models. Resellers know these sneakers will sell out, and so does everyone who wants to wear them. The combination of limited availability and hype drives prices through the roof on the secondary market.”

“Sneaker blogs now make lists of the ‘most popular upcoming sneakers’ and update them weekly. They even tell you exactly what websites they’ll be releasing on. In short, if there is hype and exclusivity, there’s money to be made.”

Sourcing shoes

To find out which shoes are hot, trending or upcoming, check out Hyperbeast and High Snobiety. Both are fashion sites that extensively cover information and news about the culture for sneaker-lovers of all levels.

Those in-demand shoes cannot simply be bought from your local retailer. To get hold of them, you can try raffles that are set up by retailers or try camping outside for a first-come first-serve option.

The average shoe reseller will use computer programs called bots to try to get their hands on sneakers. Bots virtually automate everything, attempting to rapidly check out multiple pairs from websites before they sell out, much faster than any human could. As you’d expect, bots available to the public are inferior to those used privately.

However, the people making the most money from shoe reselling have connections with investors, elite hackers, and industry insiders, as well as access to private software that essentially gives them a monopoly over the supply.

Expert resellers like Brandon Webb have built up insider connections that provide him with exact stock numbers. This helps him understand just how limited the shoe stock is. As a result he knows what’s going to be profitable far before they’re released.

To truly benefit from reselling shoes, you need to purchase products that are sold on the cheap but have lasting value in the long run. One way of doing so is by buying the sneaker on release day at retail prices, which is where they are at their most affordable

However, new pairs of shoes come far and few in between. To make money in reselling shoes, you need to find pairs sold under reseller price so you can profit off them.

How much and where to sell?

StockX is a site that shows how much the shoes cost over a 12-month period. Just like a stock market index graph, you will see the movement of price over time, thus giving you information on which shoes to acquire for reselling. It also serves as a consignment store where people can bid or ask for shoes for resale. If you have a pair of sneakers you want to sell, you could do so through the site.

StockX bridges the gap between buyers and sellers by allowing buyers to bid on available limited edition shoes. They have an authentication process which takes the guesswork out of trying to ensure shoes are not counterfeit, which is a glaring issue in the sneaker industry.

This is by far the safest and often the cheapest way to buy sneakers, and the company has only been growing in recent years. Stock X makes money off of both the buyer and seller with the commission fees, and both parties are entitled to lower fees if they buy/sell more. Once you have the information you need, it’s time to search for those shoes online.

The marketplace for reselling sneakers was once fragmented, but today there are dedicated marketplaces for sneakers, such as StockX, Hypremium, and GOAT, where all trading can be conducted through an app. These platforms provide a digital-native audience with a more formalized process and a plethora of choice.

Conclusion

Being such a cool and trendy niche, sneaker selling has allowed the tech-savvy youth to channel their creative juices and use their resources into doing something productive. This is a market that anyone can tap into. Of course, as with anything it has to be the right product on the right platform in order to create a lucrative business.

If you’d like to learn more about online marketing, or if sneaker reselling isn’t your thing but you’d like to know how to create, brand and sell other products online – then click here. I’ll send you a series of free video workshops run by my mentor who presents how you can create an online business and live the lifestyle you seek.

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I was pretty good academically, and came out of school with a feeling that I was capable of overcoming most obstacles. This stemmed from my ability to grasp and solve complex mathematical problems. What I wasn’t really taught at school (or home) was how to deal with life challenges…of which there are many! I personally wish I was taught these things in school;

#1 – Understand your personal balance sheet

Understanding a balance sheet, the components, i.e. assets, liabilities, income and expenses – and how to apply it to your ones’ situation. Essentially knowing your equity position, i.e. (assets less liabilities), and monitoring and managing your income and expenses. Of course, as a student it is unlikely that you own assets, probably have liabilities (student loan), have minimal income, if any – and many more expenses.

Despite this, students should be taught to understand their own balance sheet, the importance of building/acquiring assets and ensuring their income generally exceeds expenses each month. Only then will they understand their financial position.

#2 – Difference between good and bad debt

Students are graduating with even more debt, with the average UK student loan outstanding being more than £50,000 tied with an interest rate of 6%. This leads to a vicious cycle of seeking more debt to pay this down existing debt. One thing we all should be taught from a young age is the difference between good and bad debt.

Debt is ‘good’ if it enables you to purchase and acquire income-producing assets, i.e. a business, equity stake, property. These assets will improve your balance sheet position in the long run, yield returns (to pay off the debt interest) and provide collateral (and more) for the debt you take out.

Many people take out loans to acquire assets that don’t produce any income. This is known as bad debt, and includes car loans, credit card debt, quick cash loans. Cars and most consumer items depreciate (reduce in value) in the long run and produce little or no interim yield to pay of the monthly debt interest. What’s more is that the interest on this ‘bad’ debt tends to be much higher.

You can argue that a student loan will help to acquire those skills that are valuable in the workplace, and the lifetime earnings from employment can help repay the debt. However, graduates don’t earn enough upon leaving school to pay off the debt in their first few years of employment. Furthermore, life gets in the way as you take on more expenses and mortgage debt. All of which means that without a sensible payment plan, the student loan can hang around for a long time.

#3 – Power of Compounding

We should all be taught about the types of return available from different assets, i.e. interest from bank deposits, dividend income from equities and coupons from fixed income investments. Only then can we utilize the power of compounding from a young age.

Compounding is basically the ‘snowball’ effect that takes place when your earnings (from interest/returns) generate even more earnings. So your money grows faster and faster as the years roll on.

Students should be taught the huge benefit of investing a little now each month to realize the benefits in the future.
If one is patient and disciplined, their money can work for them and make a real difference in their account balance over time.

Albert Einstein once said that “Compound interest is the eighth wonder of the world. He who understands it, earns it … he who doesn’t… pays it.” He’s not wrong. The key is to start early. Another way to look at the power of compounding is to compare how much less initial investment you need if you start early to reach the same goal.

For example, a 25-year-old who wishes to accumulate £1m by age 60 would need to invest £880.21 each month assuming a constant return of 5%.

A 35-year-old wishing to accumulate £1m by age 60 would need to invest £1,679.23 each month using the same assumptions.

A 45-year-old would need to invest £3,741.27 each month to accumulate the same £1m by age 60. That’s almost 4 times the amount that the 25-year old needs. Starting early is especially helpful when saving for retirement, when putting aside a little bit early in your career can reap great benefits.

The point being, start investing from a young age and take advantage of compounding returns!

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#4 – There are other ways to make money than just the 9 to 5!

Call it my lack of entrepreneurial spirit, but when I was growing up I always thought there was one way to make money and that was through employment. Yes, I knew that certain jobs paid more than others, but it didn’t occur to me that there were other ways to earn an income.

I wish I was taught more about digital skills, and leveraging the internet to focus on passion projects – and earn money that way. With increasing numbers of people undertaking commerce and interactions online, it makes absolute sense that students should be taught the basic building blocks of an online presence, i.e. a website, providing value and marketing methods. It’s certainly something that I’ll emphasize to my son.

With so many ways to earn money online, students should be made aware of the how they can learn skills to start a venture online so that they’re not dependent on a salaried income, and can choose how they wish to work and what hours they work.

If you wish to start learning about the tools and avenues available to create a successful online business, and to get started in building your business – then click here to learn more. If this type of learning was available to me when I was a student, there is no limit to what I could have achieved by now in the online space.

If 20 years ago was the best time to start something, the second best time is now!

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Do you find that you get nervous, anxious or become frozen with fear at the prospect of a particular situation or circumstance? It’s completely normal and shouldn’t be seen as being weak. Here are my tips to help come overcome fears.

1. Prepare and practice

Firstly if something really stresses you out or you can’t face the prospect of doing it, you really should seek to work towards that event. For example, if public speaking is one of your fears and you’re in a job where it is common – the best thing you can do is prepare and practice until you’re proficient at speaking and it’s no longer a concern. Practice makes perfect as they say, but you don’t have to be perfect. You just need to get into a position where you can tell someone in a years time “that i used to really shit my pants giving presentations but now its second nature to me”.

You want to devote as much of your energy as possible to preparation. According to Thrillist.com, SEALs rid fear from their minds by practicing an upcoming mission until they feel naturally confident about it—until that unknown becomes, well, a little more known. They don’t lie to themselves about the risks, they simply put themselves in the best position to handle them, which inspires confidence.

2. Meditation

Meditation has a range of benefits, including stabilizing breathing and centering your mind. Someone who practices meditation daily will also have tremendous mind control over their emotions so they are agnostic to external factors. This includes stressful situations that induce fear.

One way to overcoming your anxiety and fears is to imagine yourself 15mins after the successful completion of an event or situation you fear.

The power in this technique is visualizing things ending in a successful way. Things may still not turn out the way you wanted, but you will increase the likelihood of success by doing this type of visualization.

3. Exercise

This may sound odd, BUT it works for me. Exercise right before you undertake that task or do the thing that frightens the life out of you. You’ll find that the natural high you get from endorphins after exercising works wonders.

Have you notice how elated and confident you feel after a vigorous workout? Well use that to your advantage. I tend to be not just productive and alert, but much braver after a workout session. It allows me to confidently give presentations, have that difficult conversation and take the steps that were previously holding me back from achieving a goal.

When you exercise, whether that’s weight lifting or cardiovascular you are essentially challenging yourself to overcome an obstacle you have set yourself. And when you conquer it in that session, you feel that you can overcome anything the day throws at you. Schedule that workout class in!

4. Become aware of the fear

Note that the fear we feel when facing a circumstance, event or thing, is not because of what is in front of our eyes at that moment – but because of the internal dialogue we have with ourselves. Essentially, your thoughts are the root cause of your fear and anxiety.

Fear makes you put things off. “I’m really tired. I have other stuff to do. It’s a dumb idea anyway.” These excuses probably sound familiar, don’t they? You’ve probably said this out loud and to yourself. Think about it. Is there any truth to these statements, or are you constructing excuses to avoid potential failure? It’s much easier and less painful to make excuses than it is to put in the long hours and energy it will take to work toward your goal, but excuses and opting out will ultimately leave you feeling unfulfilled.

Recognize when you are using excuses and figure out how to overcome them.

Too tired? Adjust your schedule so you can get a better night’s sleep.

Not enough time? Assess your priorities and find out where you can make time.

And the next time an excuse comes to you, make the decision to not give in to that little voice.

5. Count to 5

Alot of the time we use excuses when we’re in a fear state to avoid carrying out the task or activity. If you’re in a situation where you want to do something but feel uncomfortable, start counting to 5. At the very moment you start counting, start performing the action. Essentially you want to commit and execute the action before you get to 5. That way you’re not overthinking it and backing off.

For example, in the run up to a public speech if you’re ultra nervous, just breath and count to five and start walking towards the stage knowing that you are going to do the speech no matter what.

In another setting, if there is a girl you like – don’t think about it, just start counting to five and start walking towards her with the intention to talk to her. The rest will sort itself out. You want to have taken the action by the time you get to 5. What you are doing is overcoming your fear by taking action. Check out the book Feel the Fear And Do It Anyway by Susan Jeffers which includes dynamic techniques like this to help people face their fears head on.

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6. Know the benefit of overcoming a fear

The human spirit requires growth – mental, spiritual and physical growth. In order to achieve growth you need to put yourself in situations you find uncomfortable. This may be in front of a camera, public stage, having an honest and firm conversation, etc.

But when you’re afraid, you tend to stay in one place. What if you make a mistake and fail? You start to believe you can’t progress at all, that you’re incapable of it – the fear holds us back. Change the message you tell yourself. It’s not about achieving something and being perfect every step of the way. No one is ever perfect all the time, so stop striving for that. You have to be comfortable that you don’t know everything and you can’t do everything – and that’s perfectly OK. But you continue anyway – and this is the foundation of a growth mindset.

If you continue on a growth mindset and look back at your achievements over the last 6 months or year, you will notice how far you’ve come along. All because you overcame some long-held fears. And that is progress for sure so give yourself credit.

7. Failure is the best teacher

People worry that they will fail miserably if they attempt the steps to accomplish their goals. But like pain, failure can teach us alot about ourselves. In fact, failure is often a better teacher than success. Once you accept from the onset that failure is an inevitable part of success, you’ll be less afraid of it. Anyway, failure means you tripped up in your journey – it doesn’t mean you’ve quit. You just have to carry on because that trip-up can provide you with valuable learning experiences that will positively impact your future strategies.

The best thinkers, philosophers, business people and sports-people encountered failure on their path to their success. Its what helped them to learn, grow and try an alternate tactic or strategy. The quicker you realize your fear of failure is preventing you from making the decision to accomplish your dreams, the sooner you’ll be able to accept the possibility of failing and move on.

Having fears and feeling anxious is normal. You’re not designed to be fearless, so don’t worry. Feeling fear is healthy and our systems need fear in order to drive forward. But the more time and energy you spend thinking about a fear, the more you manifest it into your life. Try thinking on all the good stuff you want to attract into your life, and it will come.

Know your limitations but also know that nothing can stop you from getting to where you need to go.

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It’s worth preparing your portfolio in the event of an economic downturn. This article presents some of the options available to protect against a significant drop in the markets.

It’s been over 10 years since the last recession, and as business cycles tend to last between 8 to 10 years, many are wondering whether we’re due a slow down in the economy and a recession.

A recession is essentially a business cycle contraction when there is a general decline in economic activity. Usually, key macroeconomic indicators such as GDP, investment spending, capacity utilization, household income, business profits, and inflation fall for at least 2 consecutive quarters.

A key financial market indicators is the 2-10yr Treasury note spread. This is difference in yield between the 2yr and 10yr Treasury notes, and indicates the general shape of the yield curve, i.e. positive (upward trending), negative (downward trend) or flat. When investors expect weaker growth, low inflation and easier Fed policy, the yield curve flattens or inverts.

See below graph of the 2-10yr spread, with the key recessionary periods (1980-82, 1990-92, 2000, 2008-09) highlighted. You can see that the spread is close to, or at zero just before the recession;

With the current spread at around 0.1% and the yield curves of most developing nations either flat or inverted, it makes sense to consider those assets available to investors as a ‘recession’ hedge;

Gold

Gold (and silver) has been a reliable medium for thousands of years because of its quality as financial insurance, a store of value, and its tangible nature.

Gold has long been known as a safe haven for investors in times of chaos in the general equity markets. The run to gold during recessionary periods (demand > supply) creates an uptick in the value of the commodity.

The most recent recession occurred between 2007 and 2009. It was a brutal and long economic downturn that was driven by the housing crisis and reverberated around the world. To give you an idea of how painful this period was for investors, the S&P 500 Index was down roughly 37% between December 1, 2007, and May 30, 2009!

But what happened to gold? The price of the yellow metal rose 24%! It wasn’t a straight rise — gold was down around 10% at one point — but it never fell as much as stocks. Overall gold held its value at a time when stocks just kept falling.

Exchange-traded funds (ETFs) like SPDR Gold Shares (NYSEMKT:GLD) or iShares Gold Trust (NYSEMKT:IAU) track the price of gold, and are probably the easiest and quickest way to get gold into your portfolio as you don’t have to worry about taking delivery of the metal.

Jewelry demand (makes up 50% of gold demand) is more resilient than you’d probably imagine. And with gold jewelry demand coming primarily from India and China, a U.S. recession won’t necessarily change the desire for jewelry in those countries. Gold jewelry is also a status symbol, and as these countries move up the socioeconomic ladder, demand for gold jewelry is likely to rise over time.

See below the annual returns for gold compared to the S&P 500 during the last recession. You can see that gold outperformed the US equity benchmark in this time;

Gold vs S&P (US equity) performance during 2008-10 recession.

Government bonds

The reason why bonds do well in bad times is that they’ve always been considered a risk-off or ‘safe’ asset. U.S. treasuries, and especially long-term government bonds, are thought of safe, solid investments as there is very little chance of default on those assets by the government. The U.S. is not likely to go bankrupt even during a recession.

During recessionary periods, Investors are risk-averse and tend to shy away from credit risk, such as corporate bonds (especially high-yield bonds) and asset-backed securities (i.e. mortgage-backed securities), since these investments have higher default rates than government securities.

Investors will therefore seek safety and invest into government bonds, say U.S. Treasury bonds. As a result, the prices of risky bonds go down as people sell and the price of Treasury bonds increases. See below a chart of 3 long-term government bonds (UK gilts, German Bund, US 10yr Treasury) compared to the S&P 500 during the last recession. Note that while the bonds provided positive returns in 2008 compared to the circa 37% downturn in equities, the volatility of the S&P 500 (helped by people piling into cheaper equities) resulted in higher returns in S&P 500 compared to the bonds in 2009 and 2010.

Of course, the introduction of the quantitative easing (printing money) programme and numerous rate cuts in the US, Eurozone and the UK after 2010 resulted in significant positive returns for those sovereign bond securities.

Consumer staples

Even in the worst of times, consumers still buy the same amounts of staple goods like toothpaste and toilet paper. Historically, consumer staples equities have held up best out of any sector during hard times.

When the S&P 500 plummeted 49% during the dot-com crash, consumer staples as a group were up 1.2%. Although they fell 29% from peak to trough during the financial crisis, they actually performed the best of any sector.

Another benefit consumer staples provide is their low volatility. Companies in the sector rarely experience sharp price declines. Because of this, they have had the fewest bear markets of any S&P sector.

Consumer staples perform well in downturns also because of their reputation as high-quality dividend stocks. If a company can pay out even in the worst of times, investors will buy it. In addition, many of the consumer staple companies paying dividends have actually increased their dividend payments year on year!

McKinsey found that earnings in this sector remained nearly steady in every recession dating back to 1980. Put simply, consumer staples are cycle-agnostic.

See below a chart from Gallard Research comparing the performance of the consumer staples subindex and S&P 500 during the last recession. While the subindex did lose value, it was less than half of the value lost by the S&P 500 during the period;

Cash

Risk-averse and unsophisticated investors will often stash their cash in money market funds when they get nervous about the markets. While these funds do provide a high degree of safety, they should only be used for short-term investment.

Moving a good portion of your portfolio to cash or a CD (certificate of deposit), you can still make around 2-3% (guaranteed) based on today’s risk-free rate. While it’s pretty modest, you’ve got to weigh a guaranteed return against the possibility of missing out on further gains or the possibility of losing money.

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Go short!

It’s very, very likely that if you’re anticipating a recession then the equity markets will undergo a large dip. If you’re willing to take a risk, why not go net short in the equity markets? As a retail investor, you can do this by investing in those ETFs that go up when the underlying equity market it tracks goes down. This is known as a leveraged Inverse/Short ETFs, and they seek to provide X times the opposite return of an index for a single day.

Of course, as they’re leveraged they carry larger than normal risk – so you have to know what you’re doing and have a stop in place! Click here for a list of leveraged short ETFs.

Conclusion

Recessions can be emotional times for investors and the general public. If you have an investment portfolio, ensure it is well diversified. The above asset classes are some ideas that can be implemented into your portfolio.

However, the best way to protect your income during a recession is to have a variety of income sources you can rely on (not just your employment or your investment portfolio). This is why I recommend starting an online business and generate a sustainable, passive income.

To learn more, click here.

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One of the problems many people and families face is making ends meet, relying on their next set of wages, and essentially living payslip to payslip.

First some stats…

A UK survey (by the Independent), stated that 1 in 4 adult have no savings. Per the Evening Standard, 70% of Brits are broke or just getting by.

An analysis, based on an RSA/Populus survey of more than 2,000 workers, found that the vast majority of UK workers don’t have sufficient savings to cope with a financial shock. In fact, the average savings in the UK is around £4k – for people that do actually save.

When it came to savings, 32% of respondents had less than £500 while 41 per cent had under £1,000.

In the US, a September 2018 Fox News survey revealed that 26% of registered voters said they were falling behind (income vs expenses), compared to around half who said they were holding steady and 22% who said they were getting ahead.

In fact, even the fairly moderate to high earners live paycheck to paycheck. One in 10 workers earning $100,000 or more yearly say they live paycheck to paycheck. This graphic by Financial Samurai shows how people making $500k a year can still feel like they’ve saved little in comparison;

High earner but struggling!
Why even people earning $500k a year still struggle to save much

So it seems that despite their incomes – many people still feel like they’re trapped in a rat race.

Why?

There are a variety of factors as to why most people are living paycheck to paycheck. Some reasons are external, but a lot of the reasons are to do with mindset and financial discipline.

Little financial education

School teaches us a lot of theory, but there tends to be little, if any emphasis on life lessons and financial education in particular. The basics financial principles are not taught in our schools whether it be primary or higher education institutions. This includes budgeting, seeking value, investments, debt and the financial system. So while people get out of school and earn money, they have little knowledge of how to use it properly.

Living beyond your means

Why do people line up for the latest phone while their current phone is working perfectly? The need for instant gratification can be addictive especially when trying to keep up with the Jones’s. If you continuously buy things you can’t afford, it only leads to seeking more ways to fund the habit, i.e. taking out credit cards and loans (more debt) to keep the habit going.

This kind of borrowing is known as ‘bad debt’, because you’re borrowing to buy things that don’t really appreciate or provide any sort of return (as opposed to taking out a sensible mortgage for a buy-to-let investment property which generates rental and capital appreciation in the long run).

Budgeting and allocation

Many people fail to budget and end up spending more than they earn. You should always have a plan of how you will use your monthly salary. This is helped by knowing what your monthly, regular expenses will be, i.e. mortgage, child-care (nursery, etc), car payment, groceries, phone and amount to be saved. This way you can see what residual amount is left over – for ad-hoc expenditure.

Cost of living?

Let’s assess wage growth compared to the change in the cost of items over time. Could this be an important reason for why many people struggle to meet their expenses? Has wage growth been sufficient to counter the annual inflation? (Using ‘CPIH’ which includes housing costs – which is a more realistic measure considering housing makes up a major chunk of expenses)

20 year period comparing inflation and wage growth

You can see that wage growth in the UK largely surpasses inflation (which includes house price growth). Therefore, it’s not entirely conclusive that cost of living has been unmanageable – although certain parts of the UK, i.e. London have had surges in house prices over time which translated to higher mortgage costs for many homeowners.

How to break free

Change your mentality

Do.you really need to buy that thing? There’s absolutely nothing wrong with desiring nice things, but when you’re struggling to save (and maybe knee-deep in debt) you really need consider your spending each time you pull out your card.

You should try and cultivate a feeling of abundance in your life. In other words, that you are grateful for what you have and have everything you need to be happy at this present time.

Start allocating

Take these 3 steps:

  1. Make a list of your regular, monthly expenses;
  2. Reduce or eliminate any unnecessary expenses, so that your monthly income is greater than your total monthly expenses;
  3. Whatever is left, save X% and invest Y%

Save X% of your salary for unexpected expenses or to pay off your debts/loans.

The investment portion should come out of your account automatically and straight away, i.e as soon as your wage goes in. That way its not something you can deliberate about.

The investment itself can be in a dividend reinvestment fund that delivers compounding returns. Consider that a 20yr old who saves and invests £50 per week will accumulate £2,600 per year. If he does this until age 65 and averages a 10% annual return (about the S&P 500 average return over the last 80 years), he will have over £2.1m at age 65!

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Look for ways to make more money!

With work and commitments, it may seem unattainable. but if you really want something you make time for it. Ideas for extra income include driing an Uber, freelancing and consulting work, sell your stuff and renting your room out in Air BnB.

Another great option is Affiliate Marketing where you can sell other peoples’ products and services online for a commission. It’s a great form of passive income as you don’t to own a product, seek storage space, undertake fulfillment or hire staff. You just need a laptop and an internet connection!

If you like the idea of affiliate marketing and want to explore how it can provide a great side income, click here to learn more.

Freedom is the goal

Living in a paycheck-to-paycheck cycle is not freedom. It’s enslavement. For alot of people, there’s no money at the end of the month and they wonder why.

It does not have to be that way. You can break the paycheck-to-paycheck cycle and have financial freedom. It won’t happen overnight, but you can do it if you start taking steps today. Click here to learn how I started my journey towards self discovery, earning money online and seeking freedom from the 9-to-5.

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Getting content out there is vital these days to build your brand and presence online. A blog is an awesome way to do that. Here I share my 6 hacks for writing a persuasive and impactful blog;

Length and format

You should write your content as long as it needs to be. For the purposes of SEO, Google prefers content over 500 words as this length has a low bounce rate, i.e. people tend not to hit the back button and leave so quickly.

Also, I would recommend writing blogs as a list, i.e. 9 reasons for ….. . This is useful as most people scan and skim over text when reading online. Check out this article from Doughroller.com on the 5 golden rules for choosing the best stock.

Use short paragraphs to keep the reader engaged and longer on your page. Long blocks of text are not appealing. Remember that most people scan when reading content online as they’re looking for that solution for their problem. So you gotta make it skimmable. That means using bullet points, subtitles and 2-3 sentences in each block.

This article from Gardenhealth.com uses short paragraphs to succinctly list out how to maintain a cactus plant!

Use of media

You should try and use an image every 300 words to add some vibrancy, break up the text and to compliment your words. Videos also enhance your content and bring it to life.

Refer to the below instructional blog that teaches tennis enthusiasts how to execute the perfect forehand. A image of the Roger Federer throughout the content compliments the post, and is perfect for this type of instruction-based content;

For blog images, make sure you resave the file name to make it easier to find. So maybe the default file name is ‘342kja000dandflower_asd. jpeg’ – which doesn’t say much. Resave it to ‘dandelion_flower.jpeg’, and give it a title caption and alt text and description within your media settings. This is so when people search for a dandelion flower on Google images – your image and a link to your site will appear. See below:

Also a caption and a description helps in case your image doesn’t load – at least there will be a description in place explaining what the image relates to.

Headlines

Great headlines serve a need. They ask a question, provide guidance, or pique the interest of a reader. They also tell a potential reader that there is a good reason to visit your blog instead of moving on to another resource.

My tip would be to make your headline 5-7 words in length. Too long, and Google won’t accept it. Too short and it won’t provide enough detail to your readers.

CoSchedule have a superb, free headline analyzer that rates and scores how effective your headline is. Have a go, and aim for a score above 75 – as that indicates how optimal your headline is for search engine purposes.

Another way to assess what headlines are in demand is by reviewing the comments of other blogs in your blog’s niche. Look at what people are talking about, and then turn those talking points into a question or statement.

Make your headline interesting to keep the reader engaged. For example something like ‘The 7 Benefits of Green Tea – Number 6 will shock you!

Use of keywords

Blog articles are a valuable tool for driving more traffic to your site through search engines. Each article is an opportunity to optimize for keywords that you wouldn’t normally be able to optimize for on a static page on your site.

Perform keyword research at least a day before you write content to see what keywords are impactful to your audience. Research both short (i.e. “stocks”) and long-tail keywords (“how to pick winning stocks”) in the various search engine platforms and assess how popular (or saturated/competitive) that key word is.

Your keyword(s) should ideally be in the following places to optimize SEO:

  • Main heading
  • Opening paragraph
  • Image caption and description box
  • Last sentence or paragraph

The most important thing to understand about SEO for blog articles is that you should always write for people first. Search engines love content that provides value to readers so make sure you’re covering a topic that people want to read about and that your article is a helpful resource for those readers.

So make sure you use those keywords naturally. Don’t force keywords in just to include them – remember, you’re writing for people first.

Do your research and check the facts

Have links to external sites. Search engines like this, and it boosts your ranking.

Before you ever put a word on a page, you should know the direction that your blog will take. Blogging isn’t just about writing whatever you want – it’s a process of marketing your writing to others.

The most popular early blogs grew out of the relationship that consumers had with individual producers. Now that the internet has grown, though, great blogs are a product of producers creating content that consumers actually want.

The research process will help you decide if you should write that particular blog, what you should write about, and how to get the most eyes on your page. The first research attempt can be time consuming, but it will become second nature after you’ve got through the process successfully at least once.

Your credibility is key in the online world. And all it takes to tank your credibility is one glaring error. Everyone makes mistakes, but it’s crucial to avoid gaffes like this. If you’re just starting out, your credibility and authority will take a major hit if you publish inaccurate information, and even if you have a blog with millions of loyal readers, your regulars will be all too eager to jump all over your mistake.

In the event that you make a mistake in your content, it’s best to own up to it right away and be transparent about your edits. If you try to slip something past your readers, they’ll pick up on it eventually and call you out on it.

Tell people what to do

Towards the end of your blog, you want to tell people what to do next. This may be clicking on a link to subscribe for more content, download an e-book or invite them to try out your product. People don’t usually come to blog articles for a hard sales pitch, so keep calls to action gentle.

In an article by Clearscore.com on how to improve your credit score, there is an invitation for the reader to check their credit score and report;

Teachable’s article on how to create an email course is concluded with the following call to action;

Blogs are terrific, cost-effective ways to share your knowledge and information online. They provide a platform for getting your word out there and for creating and establishing your presence in the online world.

Want to create effective blogs and content to deliver knowledge around your niche? Click here to learn more.

Best,

Describing how changes in the economy require you to review your skillset to adapt to a more digital based economy

The traditional economic system comprises of those platforms, means of production and work culture in which we immerse ourselves daily to earn a living. This type of economy was underpinned by the industrial revolution before a transition to a more services based offering.

The traditional economy also bought upon some of the worst depressions over the last century including 1929-33, 1980-82, 1990-92, 2007-08. These recessionary periods occurred due to a variety of reasons – but mainly underpinned by a reliance on the traditional economies.

From 1980, a new economy was spawned – the ‘digital economy’. This was driven by the advent of electronics, record-players, computers and drawing upon the advantages of integrated circuits (i.e. cramming thousands of transistors into a microchip!) for more commercial applications.

The 1990s and the introduction of the Internet to the mainstream is what rocketed the digital economy. Suddenly there was a platform to market products and services to a wider audience, and traditional advertising media became expensive and ineffective.

Mind-blowing numbers

The Digital Economy is now worth three trillion dollars today! This is about 30% of the S&P 500, six times the U.S.’ annual trade deficit or more than the GDP of the United Kingdom. What is impressive is the fact that this entire value has been generated in the past 25 years since the launch of the Internet.

Consider these phenomenal stats…

  • Half the world’s population is online
  • 2bn social media users (around a third of the world’s population!)
  • 60% use mobile internet
  • $180bn digital advertising spend

The below info-graphics highlight the year-on-year rise in digital buyers since 2014 (in total and split by country);

Source: Invespcro.com
Source: Invespcro.com

Note the growth in China!

Tools, skills & resources

SFM (Six Figure Mentors) will help you profit from the digital economy by providing the tools, skills and resources so you can utilize an audience of 2 billion people online! What other advertising out there has that kind of reach and with such a small comparable cost?!

But in order to have a presence and a reach online, you NEED to have a website. This is essentially your digital store. Many people think it is expensive and requires extensive technical knowledge, but you can be up and running in just a few clicks, and I can show you how.

But you need to do more than just have a website. You need to create and deliver value. Alot of people go online to solve a problem. If you can think of your niche or areas you know you can talk/write for ages, then you can truly bring value to people through;

  • Articles/blogs
  • Reports
  • Videos
  • Training course
  • e-books

So build a site around your niche and create your brand. And trust me, you don’t even need to be an expert.

You can then add links and banners to your site to direct people to purchase a product/service similar to your theme. For example, if you’re specialism is photography, your content (on your website) may have cameras or camera-bags advertised for people to purchase. If a sale is made, you can earn off the commission. This is known as Affiliate marketing.

To attract people to your site and to your content (i.e. blog post, video, etc), you need to develop marketing skills. This is where specialized training is essential so you’re not wasting your time, money or effectiveness of your content.

Shifting the mindset

Preparing the next generation is about mindset, too. There are parts of the world that have the technical skills, but lack softer professional and social skills, while other regions boast a strong professional experience, but often lag behind when it comes to technical ability. What’s needed is an equitable transfer of knowledge, know-how and approach.

Expectations are changing. Research shows that an overwhelming 83% of India’s Generation Z view the smartphone as their most coveted electronic gadget. This is the generation that also expects anytime, anywhere learning, a do-it-yourself and collaborative approach to knowledge that includes video chat and tutorials.

Given the exceptional adoption rates of smartphones, it won’t be long before the number of internet users exceeds 3.7 billion, over half the world’s population. The numbers are crazy but it is a reminder that we should all seek to develop digital skills, develop a presence online and not relying on the traditional markets to get by.

Conclusion

Traditional firms are increasingly assessing how to respond to the changes brought about by the digital economy. This includes reviewing their advertising methods, use of social media and embracing Artificial Intelligence. With so much of your current (and future) customer base on an online platform, and with a significant increase in money spent online – surely it makes sense for you to make the transition too?

In summary, here is how the SFM can help you create your online business;

  1. Walk you through creating your online platform, including your website;
  2. Training on how to create value for your target market;
  3. Marketing online to your customer base, including social media promotion;
  4. Identify those high-commission affiliate programs to enable your business to become truly profitable.

Click here to learn more!

Best

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