So You Want to Be An Influencer? Consider This First...

So You Want to Be An Influencer? Consider This First...

It looks like “the good life,” doesn’t it?

The influencers life. 

Wake up late, post a selfie next to your new Ferrari, then make money horsing around on social media with some trending product sent to you for free by some hot new company.

Cushy. Fun. Exciting.

Who wouldn’t want that life? 

I sure have thought about it. About how to get it. More than once.

Everywhere you turn, influencers seem to dominate the online conversation. Youtube celebrities push funny new videos and receive thousands of likes per second. Instagram characters publish a new post and, before you know it, you’re swiping up on their latest story to buy what they’re pitching.

Though I have no fucking clue what he does, it’s not hard to see myself as the next PewDiePie. It’s not unreasonable to see any influencers success and believe that you can have it too.

And guess what? You can.

You have more opportunities than ever to become a massive, influencing success through dozens of online platforms that reach (quite literally) over 40% of the world’s population. 

For the first time in history, you can get paid to promote a product that you’ve never used, developed by someone you’ve never met, sold by a company you can’t pronounce, and make a fortune doing it.

But this isn’t an article about how to do that.

Force in Business is Not a Multiplier

Force in Business is Not a Multiplier

It’s easy to use force to accomplish your objectives. 

  • Go straight for the sale by telling your customer every benefit of your offering.

  • Shout “look-at-me” on social media to get attention.

  • Jump from meeting to email to some other urgent task to feel productive. 

More often than not, you'll find success with this approach. As such, like a pigeon that finds a seed in a pile of rocks, you continue pecking in search of more success using this blunt tool called force. 

Here's the problem.

Force requires energy. Your energy. Moreover, you can only force your will for so long before your energy is depleted.  

There’s a better way.

The Most Important Element of a Social Media Post

The Most Important Element of a Social Media Post

Be honest.

How many times have you posted a selfie on social media? What about pictures of your business, your employees, or even your products?

If you said none, you can leave now. We all know you’re lying :-).

That's what you're supposed to do, right?

Constantly post pics and text revealing new features for your latest product release. Letting the world know you have new office space. Sharing a press release your company just wrote.


I’m sorry to have to tell you this, but it’s time for a little tough love. Tough love is because I want your business to succeed.

I want you to stop wasting time on social media. I want every post you write, every image you post, and every advertisement you pay for to generate massive returns. Whether it’s likes, shares or honest-to-goodness top-line revenue, I want your social media marketing strategy to succeed. Wildly.

And the fact of the matter is, if you are posting pics of yourself, your business, your employees, your news, and otherwise just talking about yourself on social media, your posts are falling on deaf ears.

Infographic | The Latest Social Media Marketing Best Practices You Need to Know

Infographic | The Latest Social Media Marketing Best Practices You Need to Know

How many times do other companies reach out to you via social media or a messaging service? 

It’s probably several times a day, right?

How many times a day do you pursue social media interactions with friends, family, and loved ones? 

Dozens? Hundreds? More? 

The combined time you spend sending and receiving social messages from everyone and ever company is growing at a crazy rate. No matter how you slice it, that's a lot of time... and that makes it very difficult for other messages to reach through to you and get your attention.

Now, imagine you are leading a marketing effort for your company. How on earth do you reach through to your customers? Customers who are inundated with messages from friends, family, loved ones, and other companies. Customers who are swimming in "noise."

If you've been trying to market your message to your customers recently, you know how difficult it is to cut through that noise. It's becoming a monumental task to attract anyone's attention!

It's time to change what you know about your customers and how to communicate with them.

Here are some best practices explaining how to effectively use social media in a modern way that cuts through the noise, get's your customers attention, and makes an impact:

What 5.8 Million People Taught Me About Small Business Marketing

What 5.8 Million People Taught Me About Small Business Marketing

I know the feeling.

Another marketing campaign, another disappointment.

You start out with high hopes, and big dollar signs in your eyes.

But when the results from your campaign start coming in, it’s more of the same… Lackluster results.

Of course, you don’t fool yourself into thinking your marketing will take off like wild-fire, but you at least expect to get a few customers out of it.

Alas, every new campaign confirms your worst fear—you're spending money on crappy marketing that isn't effective.

Well, here's a secret...

Want to Grow Your Business? Find These 3 Numbers First...

Want to Grow Your Business? Find These 3 Numbers First...

I’m going to use two words that will quickly turn you away.

Your first reaction will be to close this article and search for greener pastures.

But you mustn’t…

Because these two words are going to be the root of your success. If used correctly, these two words are going to help you:

·       discover your niche,

·       find your ideal customers,

·       increase sales,

·       grow your business, and

·       crush your competition.

You’ve heard these words before. So has your competition.

Your competition has already used these two words to get funding, grow their startup, snag away your customers, and start encroaching on your company’s territory.

That’s because these words aren’t some hidden secret. They are widely used in corporate circles, necessary for business planning, and critical to any company’s success.

That’s why you’ll want to leave. Because you think you know what these words mean. Because you’re convinced that you’ve already gotten everything you can out of them. Because you believe you are too busy and have more pressing things to learn and bigger problems to solve.

But you don’t.

Because while you may have done this before, you haven’t used these two words since you started your business… and you haven’t used these two words to affect growth.

That’s what we’re going to do today.

We’re going to make your company stronger. Stronger from within (through a clear understanding of your customers, their buying power, and their problems) and from without (through increased presence, better customer targeting, and growth into new business areas).

Ready to hear them?

Top 7 Small Business Topic Posts of the Year

Top 7 Small Business Topic Posts of the Year

I’m a big believer in looking back, reflecting on what has gone well, and building on that in the new year to get closer to my goals.

When I look at Modern da Vinci, the growth we’ve seen is incredible. It’s a sign that we’re on the right track, but more importantly, it’s a sign that the small business community is as vibrant as ever.

Here are some incredible statistics from 2016:

  • Average reading time is up 21.45% over last year.
  • Bounce rate is down 35.14%.
  • 521.74% more page views this year over 2015.
  • 850.70% increase in new visitors in 2016!

These statistics are obviously exciting for Seth and me here at Modern da Vinci. But more so, these statistics should make you proud. Proud to be a small business owner. Proud to be part of an ongoing conversation with owners like yourself, all learning and growing together.

We’re excited for what’s to come in 2017. We’re looking forward to growing more with you and finding new small business owners like yourself to learn from.

But before we end 2016, it’s worth reviewing the top posts in each of the five areas for a growing, thriving small business.

How to Delight Customers on this Small Business Saturday

How to Delight Customers on this Small Business Saturday

It's Small Business Saturday, and today's the day when small businesses like yours get to fight for your share of the pie.

And the pie is quite large.

In 2015, over 95 million people spent $16.2 billion (with a B) in small businesses and more than 55% of Americans were aware of the holiday! This year, some project small businesses can look to claim nearly $18 billion in receipts, a 10% increase over last year [Grasshopper Blog – Small Business Saturday Statistics].

Whether you've prepared for this day or not, it's too late to adjust course now. It's too late to develop a new marketing campaign, and too late to create flyers for some new sale. 

But it's not too late (even if you are reading this at the end of the day) to do a few simple things that will delight your customers, getting them spending more money, getting them to share the word with friends and family, and ultimately attracting more customers to your business.

The Critical Importance of Lead Validation in Internet Marketing

The Critical Importance of Lead Validation in Internet Marketing

If you’re investing in a lead generation campaign, it’s safe to say you want a bang for every buck you spend. The last thing you’d want to do is to invest in campaigns with little or no return in sight, but the reality is many companies have unwittingly fallen into that trap.

Over the last 18 months, we have collected and analyzed more than 373,000 inquiries. This “Importance of Lead Validation” study indicates that as many as 50 percent of website conversions are not sales leads.

So, what are they? 

Why Your Elevator Pitch Gets Ignored and How to Fix It

Why Your Elevator Pitch Gets Ignored and How to Fix It

Have you ever been caught flat-footed when someone asks, “so what do you do?”

Me too.

Ever answered that question by saying, “I work for such and such company and we do blah”?

Yeah, me too. And it NEVER converts to a sale.

For some reason, when it's time to deliver your elevator pitch, it’s easy to get all flustered. You ramble on about your back-story or throw your company name at them followed by some industry jargon.

And what do you get in return?

Blank stares, an “oh, that sounds interesting,” or your audience reminisces about a similar idea they had once upon a time.

It sucks, and you know it sucks because it feels terrible. And it feels terrible because you sense a lost opportunity.

Well, in the next 10 minutes, we're going to outline a process for creating an elevator pitch that works for you. One that opens doors and creates conversation. One that has real potential to lead to a sale.

The 7 Best Lead Generation Tips on the Internet

The 7 Best Lead Generation Tips on the Internet

One of the biggest struggles small business owners have is generating leads. 

Sound like you? 

Even if you're not "struggling," you'd probably like to have a few more. I know I would. 

That's why I went on a voyage across the Internet, searching for a cheat sheet, an ultimate guide, or any enlightening article on lead generation ideas. But after reading more than 50 articles, listening to dozens of podcasts, and skimming the highest rated sales books on Amazon, here's what I found:


Sure, some articles had a few good tips, but most were incomplete or misguided. No single article had it all. No single article was full of quality ideas for generating leads. So, I set about creating this article—a collection of the best tips on the Internet for generating quality leads—first for myself, and now for you.

How To Influence Your Customers to Buy Using Neuroscience with Glen Hellman

How To Influence Your Customers to Buy Using Neuroscience with Glen Hellman

Glen Hellman is a business expert and strategist that writes and presents on the topic of “How To Pitch to the Reptilian Brain.”  It’s an approach grounded in neuroscience that is designed to influence others and move them to action.  In this interview, Glen shares his insights on how to use these principles to sharpen your business’s sales pitch and how they can improve your leadership and business in general. 

3 Hidden Sticking Points that Plague Small Businesses

3 Hidden Sticking Points that Plague Small Businesses

If there’s one thing we’ve learned from building several small businesses and working with small business owners, it’s that running a small business is hard and growing one is even harder.

There are many reasons why, but at the simplest level, it’s because you’ve got too many problems and too much to do with limited help and resources. Yet, through dedication, skill, and innovation, motivated business owners find a way to get things going. 

Yet, almost inevitably, most small businesses eventually hit a “sticking point.” Sales may flat-line or even decline. Issues with customers and quality emerge. Conditions in the market change. Cash runs short. Colleagues and employees become frustrated.

It’s is a critical time in your business. Not time to panic, but time to take quick and decisive action to right the ship.

The key at this point is taking the right action.

With that in mind, let’s take a look at three underlying and sometimes hidden factors that can cause your business to hit a sticking point. They exist on a foundational level and can impact the business from the inside out.

How to Get Traffic to Your Website with 5 Amazingly Simple Tips

How to Get Traffic to Your Website with 5 Amazingly Simple Tips

Search engine optimization requires considerable time experimenting, tracking, measuring, and adjusting the smallest website parameters.

Additionally, every business is different. Some small business websites are aimed at selling products, others services and digital goods. Properly optimizing search engine results for a specific site with particular goals will be wildly different, and your small business just doesn’t have time to fiddle with it.

If you are looking for a few simple tips that will give your website a traffic boost and land you more customers, here are five things you can do immediately to improve traffic to your website—fundamental tips any small business can implement to get an immediate SEO boost.

How to Use Your Customers Fears to Increase Sales

How to Use Your Customers Fears to Increase Sales

Have your past marketing efforts fallen on deaf ears? Have your previous advertisements cost you way too much for far too little gain? You’re not alone. This is a common problem nearly every small business faces.

I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again. Growing your business is hard. If you could find just one additional customer today, I know you’d call it a win.

So let’s figure out how to do that, and let’s do it quick. Let’s get to the root of the problem nearly every small business has: finding their customers, adding new customers, and ultimately growing their business.

How Much Should I Budget for an Effective Facebook Ad?

How Much Should I Budget for an Effective Facebook Ad?

Choosing a Facebook budget depends on many factors which are nearly impossible to calculate in advance. 

Successfully converting views to clicks to customers heavily depends on your ad, your messaging, and your web page. This is why I suggest starting fast and small, capturing enough data in a brief period to be able to better make this calculation.

Let me explain.