What I’m Working on in 2021

What I’m Working on in 2021

Hey, it’s David Andrew Wiebe.

If you’ve been following me for a while, then you already know who I am. Otherwise, this is our first “e-meeting.” Either way, thanks for your interest.

Here I’d like to share a little bit about what I’ll be working on in 2021 and what I’m looking to accomplish.

Content Marketing Musician

Content Marketing Musician is a new website/course platform/business unit I’m adding to my portfolio.

Although I’ve talked about it briefly in another post, you may not be aware that I’ve been building it silently in the background.

I’ve also shared about the Entrepreneurial Essentials for Musicians Masterclass, which is the first course I plan to launch.

Likewise, I’ve been working on a multi-step funnel for The Music Entrepreneur Code, my latest best-selling book. And my plan is to add this to Content Marketing Musician as well.

Will more courses and content be added to Content Marketing Musician in 2021? That is the plan, but I tend to get a little overambitious sometimes, and I’m trying to be practical while thinking big. I’m happy to report that I’m ready to go live with Entrepreneurial Essentials for Musicians Masterclass any day, though, and the Digital Marketing Essentials for Musicians course also isn’t too far off from the finish line.

I am certainly excited about what’s to come, and I hope you are too.

If you have any thoughts on courses I should make, be sure to let me know. I’m always open to suggestions.

Books

Right now, I have at least three books at various stages of completion. Which means it’s entirely possible I’ll have multiple books to share with you in 2021.

But truthfully, there is only one book I’d like to ensure the completion of. I originally started working on it four years ago. And it haunts me to this day that it hasn’t been completed.

What book am I talking about? If you’ve been following me for any length of time, then you will know that I’m referring to Flashes of Elation: Navigating the World as a Sensitive, Creative Soul.

From all the positive feedback and pre-sales received, I do not underestimate the importance of this book, which is in the final stages of editing.

As with any undertaking of this scale, I have had an on again off again relationship with this work, but I would absolutely regret not finishing it.

And every breath we take is a gift, which is something I don’t want to take for granted.

So, god willing, 2021 will be the year – the year of Flashes of Elation.

Music

I have three music projects planned for 2021, and that’s still fewer than I’d like to take on. Like I said, I have a tendency to get a little overambitious!

Anyway, here’s what’s on the docket:

  • Myrtle. My grandma passed at the top of the year, and I wrote a song in her honor. I kind of thought of it as an electric “Great Is Thy Faithfulness.” But then I thought to myself, “why don’t I record a version of ‘Great Is Thy Faithfulness’ as well?” Seems appropriate based on my grandmother’s faith. So, the plan now is to make this a two-song release.
  • Back on Solid Ground. As with Flashes of Elation, the incompletion of Back on Solid Ground has haunted me for years. The music is all written, so it’s mostly a matter of tracking the thing. The temptation will be to let perfectionism get in the way, but my listeners seem to appreciate lo-fi basement demos versus slick production anyway, so that might be the direction this takes.
  • Comedic tribute to the 80s. I have yet to reference this project by name, but I have mentioned it more than a few times on my podcast. I may reveal more closer to the end of the year.

Is That it?

Well, sort of.

You will see me publishing daily on my website and on Medium. I’m also creating content for Music Entrepreneur HQ and News Break. I’m still a staff writer with Music Industry How To as well.

I have a plan for how I intend to fulfill on these content responsibilities while developing products, but I’m trying to be as pragmatic as possible too.

I’m Staying Open to Possibilities

While many people have shown interest in the projects mentioned above (and some have even voted with their wallets), there’s always the possibility that there are others worthy of my attention.

I’d like to practice flexibility where it makes sense, and rigidity where it should be applied.

But either way, there will be great fulfillment in completing the above, especially since some of the projects have been in the works for a long time.

Final Thoughts

Feel free to follow up with me and see how I’m doing with these projects this year. I spend quite a bit of time on Twitter, and always like hearing from readers just like you.

I’m not asking for accountability, as I believe in holding myself accountable to my goals. I also have a mastermind group for that. But a little nudge never hurt.

What projects are you working on in 2021? What are you looking to accomplish?

Let me know in the comments.

The Music Entrepreneur Code paperback

Shh… Don’t tell anyone. Only the cool kids are talking about it.

Get your copy of The Music Entrepreneur Code.

For Increased Productivity, Embrace Organization

For Increased Productivity, Embrace Organization

If you want to be productive, you must embrace organization.

If you want to be productive, you must embrace organization. Click To Tweet

Some of the most successful people I know are also the most organized, and they have specific systems they use vigilantly and depend on to ensure they can get more done in less time.

Here I will share a few ways I stay organized. But there is no need to emulate what I do. You should do whatever works for you. You’re welcome to take inspiration from what follows though.

#StrategySunday Planning Sessions

Every Sunday, I plan for the week ahead and publish my minutes.

This gives me a bird’s eye view of the week ahead and what needs to be completed.

When you’ve got a lot to do, and your energy is starting to wane, things can easily slip through the cracks.

The part that eludes many is that if they’d planned well, not only would they safeguard against forgetting important appointments, but they would also be able to make more time for meditation, rest, recreation, and sleep, which would ultimately make them more effective.

Yes, it sounds counterintuitive. Because planning feels like work. That’s because it is. But it’s an important work. Just like reading. And it helps you prioritize, create more time, and approach every week with a sense of peace and confidence.

Planning is work – an important work. Click To Tweet

LifeSheet

My 2021 LifeSheet

I did not come up with the LifeSheet system. I first learned about it from James Schramko, who has a great training on it.

Schramko suggests setting up your LifeSheet within Google Drive, using Google Sheets, because of how searchable they are. This is my preference too.

I think it best to create a new LifeSheet every year and label them appropriately. This way, you can learn from each year past and avoid clutter.

Within Google Sheets, you can create tabs for anything you wish. I currently have tabs for Mission, Ideas, Concepts, Rules, Projects, Content Distribution, Post Ideas, Courses, and Medium Posts.

I could talk about each of these and share in detail what is stored in them. But suffice it to say, this is what has worked for me. And while I have taken certain ideas from Schramko, I have made my LifeSheet my own.

If you’re thinking about making your own, I would suggest doing the same. Customize your LifeSheet to serve you. That said, I’ll still offer some ideas and tips on how you can use your LifeSheet to stay organized. You can:

  • Store your login information
  • Track your affiliate partnerships
  • Track your Key Performance Indicators (KPIs)
  • Log ideas you come up with that you can’t action now (“later” file)
  • Link to Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) documents
  • Make it your quick link dashboard
  • Sort your priorities
  • Log and track your Dream 100
  • Document travel plans
  • And more

Desktop Calendar Pad

Staples desktop calendar pad

I have been using the same, physical, desktop calendar pad from Staples since 2016. Now I feel naked without it.

This is where I keep track of meetings (mostly virtual these days), appointments, important deadlines, and so forth.

I have never gone completely digital with my scheduling, though I certainly take advantage of digital calendar and scheduling tools as well.

Sometimes I will also log content I’ve completed in my physical calendar, so I know when to put together the next piece by.

Other Tools

There are other tools I use that help me stay organized to varying degrees. Here’s what they are:

  • Yellow legal pad. Perfect for tracking to-do items, especially admin related tasks.
  • Calendly. For scheduling appointments. I simply don’t have time for the typical back and forth on email. So, I use Calendly. I make Wednesdays and Thursdays available for ad hoc meetings and those booking can choose a time that’s convenient for them. I get notifications in my email and they are converted to local time.
  • iPad. This is where I keep my #StrategySunday minutes. I use my Apple Pencil to handwrite notes.

Helpful Resources

There are a few books that have shaped my organization habits and have made a tangible difference in my work life. They are as follows:

  • The 4-Hour Workweek (affiliate link) by Tim Ferriss. I blame Tim Ferriss for the de-prioritization of email in my life. I jest, but it’s kind of true. From him I learned that most communication is not life or death, make or break. It’s not urgent if it’s not urgent to you.
  • Getting Things Done (affiliate link) by David Allen. Allen advocates a paper-based system for organization and productivity. As he states in his book, you can take his system piecemeal and apply it to your own efforts, which is exactly what I have done. I don’t follow GTD to the letter. I just took the parts that made sense to me and left the rest alone. As noted earlier, I utilize both a desktop calendar pad and a yellow legal pad for the paper-based part of my system.
  • No B.S. Time Management for Entrepreneurs (affiliate link) by Dan S. Kennedy. I have never come across anyone who better understands or values time as much as Kennedy does. if you want to know how to manage your time like a pro, this book is it. Kennedy’s book will also help you determine your value and exactly how much you would need to charge per hour to earn what you’re worth. The main thing I’ve done because of this book is ensure I have long blocks of “busy” time where no one can contact or distract me from my work.

Final Thoughts

The better organized you are, the more productive you will be. You will capture more ideas, prioritize better, make better use of your time, and more. As result, you will also make more.

How you organize is up to you. But I point to multiple methods and resources above that could be of tremendous help. I also publish on productivity every Wednesday, so for more tips, you can keep an eye on the blog too.

How do you stay organized? What methods have worked for you?

Let me know in the comments.

The Music Entrepreneur Code paperback

Shh… Don’t tell anyone. Only the cool kids are talking about it.

Get your copy of The Music Entrepreneur Code.

How to get into Ghostwriting

How to get into Ghostwriting

In the last week, I’ve had a couple of people ask me how they can get into ghostwriting.

I’ve shared a great deal about this in the past, but strategy and best practices have changed a little, so I figured it was high-time I offered a refreshed perspective on the work that has been a mainstay for me in the last seven years or so.

Here’s how to get into ghostwriting.

Publish on Medium

In the past, my advice would have been to start a blog. And while this is still sound advice, you’re bound to get more attention for your work on Medium.

You can get 30 views per day on your content on Medium almost instantaneously. If you erected a blog and published daily starting today, it could be months before you start to see 30 views per day, and it could even take over a year. The advantages of Medium, therefore, should be obvious.

Think of Medium as your portfolio. Publish your best work two to three times per week. Write on the topics you ultimately wish to be writing about.

This doesn’t mean you won’t get connected to work and topics you don’t know much about, and it doesn’t mean you won’t take on such work either. A ghostwriter has to get paid.

But your love for the craft of writing, editing, and research should be obvious in your work. Because prospects need to be able to see that you can do something they cannot, or at the very least, that you love the practice of writing great content more than they do.

Remember that writing great content is the baseline requirement to be at the table. And if you’re just getting started, sorry to say, you’re not great. Which is why you need to cut your teeth on Medium. The readers are discerning, and the stats are harsh. It will take a long time to see any traction. Can you endure this? If not, you are not made for ghostwriting.

Writing great content is the baseline requirement to be at the table. Click To Tweet

One more pro tip: Be sure to back up all your work to your hard drive. If Medium closes its doors one day, or if another more attractive platform comes along, you don’t want to lose any of your content and not be able to take it with you.

But rest assured you’re picking the right platform with Medium. Many top shelf writers agree – it’s the best opportunity available to bloggers right now.

Many top shelf writers agree – Medium is the best opportunity available to bloggers right now. Click To Tweet

Get Connected with Ghost Blog Writers

In 2012, I began working as an online marketer with a music industry startup, and a couple of my key responsibilities were blogging and social media. Make sense, since they tend to go hand in hand.

I made a lot of great connections in the music industry during that time, because I was proactive about commenting on people’s content.

Amid that, I got connected to the owner of Ghost Blog Writers, Dayne Shuda, through a mutual friend, Corey Koehler.

I didn’t think much of it at the time. But I continued to see Dayne’s daily updates on LinkedIn.

In summer 2013, the startup I was working for put the brakes on our marketing efforts, as we were having some issues with software development. So, my role was effectively put on hold.

That’s when I reached out to Dayne. And I ended up working with Ghost Blog Writers for the next six years.

Now, there are a few things you should know:

  1. Now that you know about Ghost Blog Writers, recognize that you’re probably not going to be the only one applying to work with them. Competition is a given.
  2. Ghost Blog Writers may start you off on a couple of easy assignments that don’t pay much. If you give up too early, you won’t be trusted with more lucrative work.
  3. If you don’t exercise the same determination I talked about with publishing on Medium, you will not succeed with Ghost Blog Writers or any other companies you choose to work with.

If nothing else, Dayne is a great guy and he can point you in the right direction, even if it’s just to one of the hundreds or thousands of blog posts he’s written.

Keep an Eye on the Pro Blogger Job Board

Darren Rowse of Pro Blogger was an early innovator in the world of blogging. He had – and still has – a lot of great ideas, and the Pro Blogger Job Board is one of them.

On the Job Board, you will find people looking for writers to work on their projects.

When you’re just getting started, you’re probably not going to be bum rushed with requests, so it’s always a good idea to keep an eye on job postings.

You may or may not find work this way, and I’m not suggesting you count on the Job Board to bring the bacon home. Because it may not.

That said, it’s still a good idea to make it a part of your daily rounds.

Offer Your Services on Upwork

Create an Upwork profile today. It can take a while to supply all the information requested and test your aptitudes, but the effort you put into this will ultimately pay off.

There is a near endless stream of work on Upwork. Not all of it is great. Not all of it pays a whole lot of money. But as a stop gap, it can come in incredibly handy.

Don’t wait around for someone to send work your way. Look at the types of jobs employers are posting and gather as much information as you can. You may be able to track down some missed or unfulfilled opportunities this way. You may be able to create your own!

Once you’re set up, as with the Pro Blogger Job Board, you can simply make Upwork a part of your daily rounds and pick and choose which work you’d like to take on.

Reach Out to Businesses That Don’t Have a Blog

This, in effect, is how I started blogging with the music industry startup mentioned earlier. I have told this story elsewhere, and there’s a little more to it than that (I also invested a sizable amount of money into the business), but suffice it to say, the right pitch will get you hired every time.

If a business does not have a blog, it’s usually for one of three reasons:

  1. They don’t know what the benefits of blogging are. They don’t know that they can rank for keywords, drive more traffic to their website, generate more leads, and encourage more sales from the simple act of blogging.
  2. They don’t have the time or money to blog.
  3. They don’t care about blogging as other advertising and marketing channels are doing just fine for them.

All three types of businesses are potential customers. It mostly comes down to the pitch and how you frame the value of blogging to them.

If you’re dealing with customer #1, you simply elaborate on the benefits of keywords, SEO, content marketing (throw a few buzzwords around) and show them examples of companies that already have blogs and are publishing regularly.

With customer #2, you just need to show them why they can’t afford not to blog, and volunteer to take on the work for them. Do it on the cheap or pro bono (more on this in a moment).

And with customer #3, you need to show them how you can complement their existing marketing channels with blogging. Give them examples of how you can tie in content with their ads.

Now, as a complete beginner, see if you can negotiate a small fee or work pro bono for a company that doesn’t have a blog. You need to polish your skills anyway, and the added pressure of being “under the gun” can help you refine in a hurry.

Sure, some will tell you “no,” but rejection exists in every freelancing or entrepreneurial endeavor. It’s par for the course. If you don’t love writing, and don’t want to keep pursuing it, you will give up. It’s as simple as that.

Final Thoughts

Get established, work hard, keep your deadlines, read lots, and keep improving. Keep your working relationships private. If you do, making a couple grand a month at ghostwriting will prove relatively easy.

In due course, you may be able to earn five-figures per month. But it’s a rare writer who does.

As a ghostwriter, you will rarely get credit for any of your work, and that is a bit of a downside, but it’s not impossible to begin building your own following as you are serving your clients, just as I’ve done.

Are you a writer? What has your experience of ghostwriting been like?

Let me know in the comments.

The Music Entrepreneur Code paperback

Shh… Don’t tell anyone. Only the cool kids are talking about it.

Get your copy of The Music Entrepreneur Code.

My Best Articles from 2020

My Best Articles from 2020

In late December 2019/early 2020, I started reviving DavidAndrewWiebe.com.

It was never entirely “dead” per se. I continued to update it with my latest music and shows through the years. But something inspired me to pick up the slack and start building out the site again.

That is another story for another time, but suffice it to say, 2020 was a big year for my personal website and blog. Especially since I started publishing daily towards the end of July.

Here, I’d like to share what I think are my best articles from 2020.

What is a Personal Assistant?

Read What is a Personal Assistant?

Early year, I started receiving a variety of questions relating to entrepreneurship and business. So, I started answering them on my blog. If people were asking for it, then there must be a demand for it, or so I thought.

And with this article, I felt I was able to answer the questions thoroughly and concisely.

How to Generate More and Better Ideas

Read How to Generate More and Better Ideas

It’s not about how good ideas are. It’s about how well you execute against them.

This is true, and there’s no value in just being an idea person. At the same time, ideas can foster inspiration. And that can lead to breakthroughs in your work. So, you can’t underestimate the value of ideas. Just remember to store them or use them. Otherwise, they’re of little use.

Why You’re Not Achieving Your Goals

Read Why You’re Not Achieving Your Goals

A simple, concrete, hard look at why people don’t achieve their goals. Hint: It’s not because they didn’t set SMART goals.

First, you must set your goals. Second, your goals must be written down. Third, you need to create a strategy to accomplish your goals. And finally, you must action your strategy.

Have a read through the article for more detail.

Killing Marketing by Joe Pulizzi & Robert Rose Book Notes

Read Killing Marketing by Joe Pulizzi & Robert Rose Book Notes

I do quite a bit of reading, and one of the ideas I was beginning to explore early year was publishing my book notes. Based on how this piece turned out, it makes me think I should do it more.

Killing Marketing was an interesting read. Mainly because I didn’t find much value in it until I reached the middle chapters. Which makes me glad that I started speeding through the introductory chapters to get to the better ones.

First Step to Building Excitement for Your Music Release – Issuing the Release

Read First Step to Building Excitement for Your Music Release – Issuing the Release

This post was an outgrowth of my interest in project management. And even though I’m not sure all musicians understand just how useful and powerful issuing their release is, if they want to learn the ins and outs, there’s always this article.

How to Make Viral TikTok Videos to Build Your Music Career

Read How to Make Viral TikTok Videos to Build Your Music Career

You’ll often find me experimenting with social media. That said, I rarely deviate from my core focus, and this year, that’s Medium, Twitter, and to a lesser extent, YouTube.

Still, I felt it important to cover this timely topic for musicians, especially while I was still publishing my experimental newsletter, Music Career Tips Weekly last year.

How to Get Your Live Streaming Concert Game Down Pat

Read How to Get Your Live Streaming Concert Game Down Pat

This was another timely piece aimed at musicians. Since the live music industry was (and continues to be) affected by COVID-19, I felt it important to highlight tactics musicians could action to grow their music career, even in 2020.

Beginner’s Guide to Affiliate Marketing for Musicians

Read Beginner’s Guide to Affiliate Marketing for Musicians

As creators we’re often quick to say, “the money doesn’t matter.” But when push comes to shove, we quickly come to the realization that making a living from our passion is not a sin.

Making a living from your passion is not a sin. Click To Tweet

In this guide, I share a simple, integrated way musicians can start making more money from activities they’re already engaged in.

You Were Only Ever Meant to be You

Read You Were Only Ever Meant to be You

In this short piece, I share a simple message on being your fully expressed, authentic self.

How to Create Systems as a Creative

Read How to Create Systems as a Creative

SYSTEM stands for “Save Your Self Time Energy and Money.” It’s a reality artists often aren’t too quick to embrace, but if they do, they’ll find themselves with more time, energy, and money to work on the things they care most about.

Alternative to Bandcamp, Nimbit & Gumroad?

Read Alternative to Bandcamp, Nimbit & Gumroad?

An article in which I highlight the value of Sellfy of which I am an affiliate. But honest to god, it’s an easy-to-use eCommerce platform for all creatives and creators.

How to Get a Booking Agent

Read How to Get a Booking Agent

After my podcast interview with Jack Forman of BiCoastal Productions, I put together this piece to highlight his and my perspective on getting a booking agent. It’s mostly written with musicians in mind, but even if you’re a dancer, actor, public speaker or otherwise, you will find this valuable.

4 Insidious Music Entrepreneur Myths Debunked

Read 4 Insidious Music Entrepreneur Myths Debunked

Here’s a post with a lot of attitude. I wanted to address some of the naysayers who don’t properly understand music entrepreneurship, which is exactly what I did in this popular piece.

Productivity in Music – Does it Matter?

Read Productivity in Music – Does it Matter?

At the time of its publishing, I boldly declared that this was the best piece I’d ever published on productivity. And you know what? I still stand by it!

Setting Goals for Your Music Career

Read Setting Goals for Your Music Career

A piece about the importance of setting big goals and how to make them a reality.

The Shiny Object is Often Just a Distraction in Music Entrepreneurship

Read The Shiny Object is Often Just a Distraction in Music Entrepreneurship

In this article, I share some of the most critical things a musician should know about money. These lessons were hard earned.

Why I Don’t Think 1 Cent Per Stream on Spotify is Going to Save the Music Business

Read Why I Don’t Think 1 Cent Per Stream on Spotify is Going to Save the Music Business

The title kind of says it all. But I cover several things that appear to be coming down the pike that creatives may not even be aware of.

Should I Start with a Single, EP, or Album for My First Release?

Read Should I Start with a Single, EP, or Album for My First Release?

There are certainly more than a few voices covering this topic. And opinions are quite diverse.

Here I share what I think is the best way for musicians to get started, because it creates more opportunity.

4 Myths That Stop Musicians from Building Their Team

Read 4 Myths That Stop Musicians from Building Their Team

I’m sure I’m not the only one that is sometimes stopped by the prospect of building a team. I’m a Sigma male through and through, and that goes a long way towards explaining my lone wolf tendencies. But I know I’m not alone.

This piece got quite a bit of traffic throughout 2020, and I think it’s a great tool for discovering where you might be stopped in collaboration and working with others.

The 4 Pillars of Success

Read The 4 Pillars of Success

This article will probably live on as an underrated, “oh that’s so obvious” kind of resource. But I still believe 100% it was divinely inspired. Spirit showed me what I didn’t understand about success. And I continue to return to these pillars when I feel lost.

Do Musicians Still Need a WordPress Site?

Read Do Musicians Still Need a WordPress Site?

This article is basically about sales funnels and tools you can use to build them. But the key takeaway here is threefold:

  1. Having a centralized website (funnel hub) that leads to all your funnels is still wise.
  2. Funnels don’t serve every type of customer. Some are even turned off by multi-step sales funnels that keep throwing more and more bonuses at them.
  3. Don’t just create funnels. Create products too. And sell them in a genuine, authentic, value-adding way.

What’s the Best Way to Get My Music Videos on Vevo?

Read What’s the Best Way to Get My Music Videos on Vevo?

Music videos aren’t just a great promotional tool. They can also help musician make money – directly, and indirectly.

Vevo is a well-recognized entity in the music video space, so it’s no surprise musicians want to know how to get their videos on Vevo.

YouTube Marketing for Musicians: An Up-to-Date Guide

Read YouTube Marketing for Musicians: An Up-to-Date Guide

I am sometimes asked what my best tips for YouTube are. I have a few channels with small, engaged followings, though I certainly wouldn’t say I’m the king of the Tube.

Still, my best advice for today is summed up in this guide, and it was inspired by people who are doing far better on YouTube than I am.

Getting Your Music Featured on Spotify Playlists

Read Getting Your Music Featured on Spotify Playlists

The mere mention of Spotify lights up musicians everywhere. And the fascination has a lot to do with widely publicized success stories (rare) and algorithmic exploitation (Spotify will be putting an end to that soon, if they haven’t already).

But getting playlisted is still worthwhile, and in this guide, I share some unconventional, outside the box techniques.

Making it to the Next Level

Read Making it to the Next Level

It’s human to want more. But the question that follows is, “how do I make it to the next level?” That’s what I elaborate on in this piece, from a spiritual perspective.

Stop Reinventing the Past

Read Stop Reinventing the Past

As creatives and creators, we tend to make ourselves look as good as we possibly can. We sugarcoat the past and glorify the present. Which is almost always coming from how we listen to others and wanting to look good or avoid looking bad.

I still contend that you can be successful in your chosen industry or niche by being fully authentic and genuine. There’s no need to constantly remind yourself of a horrific past, and the future is whatever you want it to be.

How to 4X Your Medium Traffic in 80 Days or Less

Read How to 4X Your Medium Traffic in 80 Days or Less

As noted earlier, Medium is a core part of how I’m building engagement right now. And in late October/early November, I started to see huge growth in traffic to my Medium articles. While this sudden surge didn’t last, I have held steady at about double the traffic I had before it happened.

So, in this article, I talk about several things you can do to grow your Medium traffic faster.

I’m Worried About Posting Too Often

Read I’m Worried About Posting Too Often

When I talk about publishing daily, inevitably there are those creatives and creators who feel like they would be overwhelming their friends, followers, or audience by posting so often.

Now, right now I can tell you that I probably tweet 30 to 40 times per day on Twitter. Not daily, but even on lesser days I probably tweet at least 10 times. So, that should tell you something.

Anyway, if you need a little perspective on this, have a read through this piece.

How I Accidentally Weaned Myself off Social Media

Read How I Accidentally Weaned Myself off Social Media

Now, in some ways this is the opposite of what I just said about posting more often. But the truth of the matter is that this is more a lesson in curating your social media feeds (a topic I promised to elaborate on in the future) than anything.

What’s the Best Funnel Builder?

Read What’s the Best Funnel Builder?

The best funnel builder, in my opinion, is the one that allows you to build an all-in-one website, membership site, course platform, forum, and more. Have a read through this article to find out what that is.

How Dare You Call Me “Unlimited”

Read How Dare You Call Me “Unlimited”

“How could you possibly say that I’m unlimited when everything is going wrong for me?”

It’s an odd question, and I’m not even sure it was sincere. But in this post, I look at how this is true, at least from a spiritual perspective.

Do You Still Make Music?

Read Do You Still Make Music?

Apparently, some people thought I was becoming all about my books. So, in this article, I wanted to address that.

But people found this commentary especially interesting. Maybe because it’s not the type of article you often see out there. Either way, that’s why I included it on this list.

Meditation – What Works for Me

Read Meditation – What Works for Me

Meditation became a major focal point for me, especially in the last few months of the year. So, I thought it prudent to cover my discoveries and thoughts on meditation at length.

The Mirror Principle

Read The Mirror Principle

The mirror principle is always at work. It’s the idea that our outer world is always a reflection of our inner world. Understanding this at a deeper level allows you to navigate life’s challenges with greater ease.

A Powerful Morning Routine I Stumbled on

Read A Powerful Morning Routing I Stumbled on

Although it’s fair to say I don’t follow this routine to a tee anymore, I still live some variation thereof. I have found exercise, meditation, and reading to be valuable in any routine I live out.

5 Simple Habits to Support Your Creativity

Read 5 Simple Habits to Support Your Creativity

This one ended up becoming a bit of a favorite too. Maybe because it’s a listicle?

But honestly, there are some good tips here. Have a look for yourself.

How to Get Your Side Hustle off the Ground

Read How to Get Your Side Hustle off the Ground

It’s not as complicated as you might think, and in this article, I cover exactly what’s involved in starting your own digital side hustle for some extra dough.

Priority vs. Productivity – Which is More Important?

Read Priority vs. Productivity – Which is More Important?

It’s possible to get many things done in a day. But what’s the point? If you can’t answer that question, then all you’re doing is getting things done.

But if you prioritize and put first things first in your day, you will achieve more of what’s important to you.

How to Boost Your Creativity with a Journal

Read How to Boost Your Creativity with a Journal

There is more than one way to use a journal, and it can be a powerful tool for boosting your creativity too. Find out how.

3 Ways to Stop Frustration & Keep Growing Your Business

Read 3 Ways to Stop Frustration & Keep Growing Your Business

When you become frustrated, it’s easy to stay frustrated. So, how do you get out of that harmful, unproductive cycle? That’s what I look at in this piece.

Why Blog? Here Are My 31 Reasons

Read Why Blog? Here Are My 31 Reasons

Seeing as how I publish daily this question is sure to come up sooner or later. I thought I would address it early.

How to Create an Irresistible Offer

Read How to Create an Irresistible Offer

There are offers and then there are irresistible offers. In this post, I cover several ideas that will help you make your offer more attractive to your audience.

7 Recommended Books for Self-Improvement

Read 7 Recommended Books for Self-Improvement

Self-improvement is an area I’ve been focused on since 2009. Naturally, I’ve read my share of books. In this post, I cover what I think are some of the better ones.

How to Overcome Perfectionism in Creativity

Read How to Overcome Perfectionism in Creativity

Something virtually every creative wants to know. Maybe some of my tips will help?

Final Thoughts

When I started rebuilding my website in 2020, I had no idea what it would grow into. But as I started gaining clarity and momentum, it became more obvious. And you can see from the about page as well as the projects page that I’ve been able to fill in the blanks along the way.

I’m excited for what 2021 holds, and the ways in which the site will continue to grow.

Which article was your favorite? What would you like to read more about?

Let me know in the comments.

The Music Entrepreneur Code paperback

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Get your copy of The Music Entrepreneur Code.

5 Books I Read in 2020 That Made a Difference

5 Books I Read in 2020 That Made a Difference

If there’s something you want to learn, there are few activities as valuable as reading books.

Authors often share their best ideas and tips in their books. And considering you can get most books for about $20; you’d be hard pressed to find a more valuable resource.

Here I share five books that made a difference for me in 2020.

Killing Marketing by Joe Pulizzi & Robert Rose

Killing Marketing book

Joe Pulizzi is the author of Content Inc., one of my favorite business books. And Robert Rose, of course, has a long history with Joe Pulizzi, especially at Content Marketing Institute and with the PNR with This Old Marketing podcast.

And then you have the two teaming up to write a book. What could possibly go wrong?

Well, as I shared in my book notes on Killing Marketing about a year ago, the first few chapters seem to waffle endlessly on what is bound to be a forgone conclusion for forward thinking marketers. Pulizzi and Rose were clearly writing to traditional marketers who have yet to understand or embrace digital best practices.

The middle chapters are where the book delivered a goldmine of proven strategies, tactics, and ideas one could apply to their enterprise, or even their small independent business. From revenue streams to qualities that make an e-newsletter successful, there were multiple gems worth mining for. I just wish the book focused primarily on these, but as they say, the best part of a book is usually about an hour into it.

Killing Marketing (affiliate link) alerted me to aspects of digital monetization and marketing best practices I wasn’t even aware of. And it reminded me of key takeaways I already knew. I experimented with an e-newsletter in 2020, and my discoveries in this book served as the guiding light.

No B.S. Business Success in the New Economy by Dan S. Kennedy

No B.S. Business Success in the New Economy by Dan S. Kennedy

It’s because of No B.S. Business Success in the New Economy that I no longer judge Dan Kennedy books by their title or cover. This book is a veritable goldmine for entrepreneurs and independent creators, even though Kennedy’s target audience is primarily professionals.

What does it take to succeed in business? What is the mindset required? How should you think about relationships and connections as applied to ambition? How do you structure your inner circle? This book will answer every question posed and more.

About the only downside I can think of is that I wish I wrote the book. Because it will leave you feeling empowered and better equipped to handle any challenges that come your way.

No B.S. Business Success in the New Economy (affiliate link) should be on the bookshelf of any ambitious creative or creator and it should be devoured from cover to cover more than once.

Speak to Sell by Dan S. Kennedy

Speak to Sell by Dan S. Kennedy

You should only open your mouth when you are ready to sell.

You should only open your mouth when you are ready to sell. Click To Tweet

If I were to sum up legendary marketer Dan Kennedy’s Speak to Sell in a sentence, the above would be it.

This is not a how-to book. Kennedy doesn’t tell you how you can turn every presentation, radio interview, podcast interview, webinar, or otherwise into a money-making opportunity. But he tells you why you should approach every engagement that way.

When you understand just how disciplined Kennedy is about his work, and the lengths he will go to protect his personal productivity, it shines light on why Kennedy has always approached the opportunity to speak in this manner. He is always looking to maximize results from every effort, and he puts lesser entrepreneurs to shame with his work ethic and vigilance.

From Speak to Sell (affiliate link), I understood that there must be a purpose behind every public message you share. If there isn’t, you’re just speaking. But when you are clear on your intention, you are speaking to sell.

Sex Money Kiss by Gene Simmons

Sex Money Kiss by Gene Simmons

Kennedy’s Speak to Sell soon led me to Gene Simmons’ Sex Money Kiss. And it wasn’t long before I saw just how philosophically aligned the two are.

I don’t think any musician or creative can come away from Sex Money Kiss uninspired. When you understand that Gene Simmons considers himself lucky that he gets to make money at something he loves, and when he was first getting started, he was happy to be able to do it on evenings and weekends, you see that he’s far more pragmatic than he’s often given credit for.

Sex Money Kiss is not in the voice of a Rockstar who has conquered sexual and musical mountains. It’s in the voice of a caring father who wants to pass on his best advice about life. And there is far more content in the book than most readers would even suspect. Simmons puts some professional authors to complete shame (I read my share of awful books this year too, and one specifically was by a well-known marketer).

Simmons’ relationship and marital advice will be shirked by some readers. But Simmons is about the only figure who will help you understand that every decision you make is a monetary decision and that perspective is as valuable as it is rare.

Sex Money Kiss (affiliate link) reignited my passion. And it helped me see the world from a different perspective. It offered practical advice on how to structure my days and weeks. It helped me to see the financial implications of every decision I make, including relationship decisions.

Traffic Secrets by Russell Brunson

Traffic Secrets by Russell Brunson

Russell Brunson is infamous in the digital marketing world – for good reasons, and for not so good reasons.

But if you had read some of his earlier works, and thought to yourself, as I had, whether this man would ever find his stride as an authority, Traffic Secrets banishes any doubt from your mind.

Brunson makes a bold move here, as he now has in his catalog a book that will need to be updated at least every two to three years, as it specifically mentions platforms like Facebook, YouTube, Google, and so on.

If 2021 so far is any indication, there could be some massive upheaval in the social media space. Though I will withhold any specific comments as to what I see coming.

Regardless, Brunson is smart in clarifying that a) there are many sources of traffic available, b) traffic is platform driven, c) how we use these platforms is based on what’s working now (algorithm dependent), and d) you only need to focus on one channel to make seven-figures in your business. At the end of the book, he notes publishing daily and developing your Dream 100 connections is enough to cross that threshold.

After reading Traffic Secrets, you will get that if you’re engaged in digital marketing, there’s no need to reinvent the wheel. You can pick a suitable platform (based on your audience and the type of content you’re creating), learn its ins and outs, emulate people who are more successful than you are, and with persistence find traction on your chosen channel.

If you thought it was all upsides, I will say this – I kind of wish Brunson read my writing tips. There are some things about the way he writes that drives me insane. And that’s coming from someone who also doesn’t follow the rules 100% of the time.

With Traffic Secrets (affiliate link), I’ve been able to take my Medium, Twitter, and YouTube game to the next level. And those are the platforms I intend to focus on in 2021. If anything, I’m doing more with Medium and Twitter than YouTube.

Final Thoughts

My reading habit was on the uptick in 2020. But I’m looking forward to reading and discovering many more great books in 2021.

What will you be reading in 2021?

Do you have any recommended books?

Leave a comment and let me know.

The Music Entrepreneur Code paperback

Shh… Don’t tell anyone. Only the cool kids are talking about it.

Get your copy of The Music Entrepreneur Code.