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   A Home-Based Business Online
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  February 10

    Sent to 3,586 subscribers

     Editor: Elena Fawkner
   Publisher: AHBBO Publishing
  
  Contact By Email
 

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   IN THIS ISSUE
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1.  Welcome and Update from the Editor
2.  Home-Based Business Idea of the Week - Importer/
  Exporter
3.  Feature Article - Letting Go Of Coat-Tails ... Creating
  Your Own Home-Based Business
4.  Newsletter Publishing Tutorial - Part 4 - Creating
  Your Template, Formatting Issues and Getting
  Set Up
5.  Real Life Success Stories
6.  Freebies
8.  This Week's Web Site Pick
9.  Next Week in A Home-Based Business Online
11.     Subscription Management
13.     Contact Information
 

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1. Welcome and Update from the Editor
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Hello again and a warm welcome to all new subscribers!

This week's Real Life Success Story comes from Ed Davis
of Virv Web Design.  Ed's story contains much wisdom for
those just starting out in their own business and highlights
a number of traps lying in wait for the unprepared.  Thanks Ed
for your insights!

Also this week, Part 4 of the AHBBO Newsletter Publishing
Tutorial starts getting into the nitty gritty of putting your
newsletter together.  It's quite a long segment, though, and
for this reason I've made it available by autoresponder and at
the AHBBO website rather than including it in full in this
week's issue.

Finally, a couple of people have mentioned that last week they
received several copies of the newsletter.  I'm at a loss to
explain why this happened, it was certainly only sent once!
I can only assume it was a server problem somewhere along
the line.  If you received multiple copies of the newsletter
last week, my apologies!  Hopefully we won't have the same
problem this week.

Remember, this newsletter is for YOU! If you have comments
or suggestions for topics you would like to see addressed,
or would just like to share your experiences with other
subscribers, I want to hear from you! Please send comments,
questions and stories to Contact By Email
 

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2. Home-Based Business Idea of the Week - Importer/
    Exporter
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Here's a neat idea that's perfect for those of you who love to
travel.

As an importer/exporter you may act merely as an agent,
bringing buyers and sellers together from different parts of the
world or you may take a more active role, actually buying
merchandise overseas and importing it into your home country
for resale yourself and vice versa.

One of the great advantages of this business is the relatively
low start-up costs (assuming you start out as just an
agent): a telephone, fax machine and a computer
will be all you need to get started equipment-wise.

Your greatest non-financial investment will be educating
yourself about the various trade regulations that apply
in various countries and establishing a network of trade
contacts.

Useful resources:

=> Entrepreneur Magazine's Import/Export Business
     Start-Up Kit

=> Breaking Into The Trade Game: A Small Business Guide
http://www.sba.gov/OIT/info/Guide-To-Exporting/all.html

=> Center For International Trade
http://centretrade.com/index.html

=> Digilead Trade Leads for Importers and Exporters

=> The Virtual Reference Desk - Importing and Exporting
http://www.virtualref.com/subj/46.htm

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There are many more ideas like this in AHBBO's Home
Business Ideas page at
and Online Business Ideas page at
with more being added
all the time.
 

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3. Feature Article - Letting Go Of Coat-Tails ... Creating
Your Own Home-Based Business
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By Elena Fawkner

If you're looking for a way to make money from home and
you've been online for any length of time you will have quickly
become aware of the preponderance of business opportunity
sites and ads for many and varied business opportunities.
In particular, you've probably been bowled over by all the
promises of the fabulous internet riches that can be yours,
if you only join so-and-so's innovative new groundfloor
opportunity that everybody who is anybody wants in on.

This week I received an email from a subscriber asking for
my opinion on a particular business opportunity.  She was
asking what I "really thought" about it because she had
been "burned so many times in the past I just don't know
who to trust".  Sound familiar?

I've received several emails like this over recent months from
people who have been dudded by the charlatans who seem to
come out of the woodwork at the mere whiff of a victim, er ...
prospect.  This latest one though got me wondering exactly why
it is that so many people seem to be looking to make a profit
from promoting or participating in someone else's business
opportunity or product rather than creating their own, using their
own ingenuity.  And this applies not only to scams but to
legitimate business opportunities (yes, they DO exist).  After
all, no matter how legitimate the opportunity, at least some of
your hard work and effort is going to benefit someone else.

Now, admittedly, promoting someone else's product (such as
by way of affiliate programs) is a good way to get started in your
online career, but it's not going to make you really serious
money.  By "serious" I mean sufficient money to represent a
worthwhile return on the investment of time and effort you must
expend to earn significant commission income.  By spending the
same amount of time and effort promoting your OWN business,
your return must necessarily be much greater.  After all, you keep
100% of the profits for the same work!

Why is it that some people, let alone those who have already
been burned, keep looking for someone else to deliver the
answer to their prayers rather than creating it for themselves?
Or worse, give up entirely?  I'd be willing to bet that, for a goodly
proportion, the answer is "I don't have any products of my own
to sell" or "I don't have any good ideas" or "I don't know where
to start".

Now, it may be that you're just dabbling with the idea of an online
business and, for you, promoting a few affiliate programs while you
gradually get more involved is a good place for you to be right now.
Many of us started out doing exactly that.  But for those of you
who are ready to get into this in a serious way, have you thought
about doing it for yourself?  Why not let go of the idea there is
a perfect opportunity out there with your name on it if only you
can find it, and instead devote your time and your energy to
creating it using your own brainpower?

I believe, absolutely and without equivocation, that ANYONE can
make money with their own business.  The key is to make sure that
what you choose for your business is something you are passionate
about.  If you are passionate about what you do, your natural
enthusiasm and motivation will lead you to develop ways to exploit
that passion in a way that can generate income.

Let's say one of your absolutely favorite things in the whole world is
gardening.  You've always loved to garden, you have ever since you
first got your own place and you do it every chance you get.  Think
about how you might translate that natural interest into a profitable
business endeavor.

Here's just one suggestion how you can turn your green thumb to
your financial advantage: start a gourmet herb business!  You could
indulge your passion for gardening by planting a herb garden in your
backyard, drying and packaging the herbs you grow and marketing
them to a niche market.  Your niche may be the gourmet market,
for example.  You might decide to experiment with various
combinations of herbs to come up with some exotic gourmet herb
blends that are truly original.

You would need to invest in a small greenhouse perhaps and learn
about how to dry herbs and all the other facets of a herb business.
But once you've mastered that, and experimented with various
blends to create a unique product, it's simply a matter of packaging
them attractively for your market.

As far as marketing's concerned, this would take place both online
and offline.  You will, of course, have your own website from which you
offer your exotic herb blends for sale.  Your website would contain a
profile of all the various herbs, what they are good for, recipes and
other resources that your site visitors would be interested in.  In time,
you may even expand into producing herbs for the homeopathic
market!  You could supplement your website by publishing a weekly
or monthly newsletter devoted to all things herbal, including hints and
tips for your subscribers wanting to grow their own herbs or who
are interested in the health benefits of herbs.

Offline, you could approach local businesses in your area to stock
your products and attend weekend markets to build your profile.
By placing advertisements in local newspapers and taking an active
role in your local Chamber of Commerce you would make the
contacts that you need to become known within your local community.

Other ways to indulge your passion for gardening while at the same
time operating a profitable business venture include: growing your own
vegetables to produce gourmet pasta sauces; starting a packaged
seeds business or a garden design consultancy service.  It doesn't
matter.  Just make sure it has something to do with what you are
truly passionate about.

Gardening is, of course, just one example.  Perhaps your
passion is sewing, needlecraft, woodworking, computers, sports,
parenting, travel, automobiles, leadlighting or any one of a million
other things.  There is absolutely no reason in the world why you
cannot take that passion and convert it into a money-making
enterprise, particularly with the internet as a marketing medium.

So, for those of you looking for the right business opportunity "out
there" somewhere ... STOP.  Let go of the coat-tails, reach inside
yourself and grab the one thing you are TRULY passionate about
above all others.  It is your ticket to a profitable, home business of
your very own.  And best of all, it's 100% all yours.
 

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4. Newsletter Publishing Tutorial - Part 4 - Creating
Your Template, Formatting Issues and Getting Set Up
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As stated earlier, this week's instalment is lengthy
and for this reason it is not set out in full here but rather
is available by autoresponder.  To receive this week's
instalment, just send a blank email to

 

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Next Week  Part 5 - Building Your Subscriber Database I -
Initial Subscriber Generation, Accepting Free Ads, Announcement Lists,
Directories and Other Forms of Free Publicity

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Missed previous instalments?  No problem!  All instalments
of the AHBBO Newsletter Publishing Tutorial are archived at
the AHBBO website at
 

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5. Real Life Success Stories
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By Ed Davis
Virv Web Site Design

Hi Elena, just wanted to say: your article on home based
business (that ran in the Add Me newsletter) considerations
was sooooo on the money I can't believe it!  I totally agree
with everything you said and often find myself giving the
same advice/warnings to those who are considering running
their own business.  I'm a self employed web developer now
in business for about 2.5 years.

Some things I also find myself saying to others is that there
is no such thing as 'easy money', get ready to be intensely
frugal if you start with small cash reserve and that there are
so many angles to running the whole show; from taxes to
office supplies, hardware upkeep, software (if you're using
computers) and also one must be responsible and find time
for one's professional development.

And there are so many different hats to wear, project manager,
sales, artistic director, grunt laborer, data processor, go-for,
accountant, clerk, and, as some home entrepreneurs call
themselves: CEO. Budgeting is the major make or break
factor in my business, or perhaps the thing I was least
prepared to handle.

I'm definitely working longer and harder than I've ever worked
before and in the beginning I had such a slim profit margin, I
almost worked myself out of business as I developed my
portfolio. But I didn't, and now things are great. I totally
restructured my fees, took a hard look at what each function
I performed was worth and kept track of everything. And I
learned how to say 'no' diplomatically, negotiate, and how to
separate my personal self from my work better, which is hard
when your bedroom is next to your office.

One thing about fees, they are hard to raise after one has
'low balled'. I really would say now, in retrospect, I shouldn't
have started so low in my pricing. I think my initial clients
would have paid closer to market value for my services (even
though I was starting out) and one must never severely
discount one's services or else you start a ball slowly rolling
into the gutter. Clients will get used to cheap labor, not give
you your fair shake and worst, will refer you to other clients
expecting to pay the same; basically devaluing professional,
quality work. This is a danger to avoid if at all possible.

It's too bad that a lot of small businesses start in a state of
utter chaotic desperation, but now I happily just call that
'paying dues', as in, 'I've paid my dues in full!' because I know
those days are finally over!

And there is a simple one liner as far as staying in business:
'make more than you spend'. That's it. That's all there is to
it.

Ed Davis
Virv Web Site Design
11622 3rd Ave NE
Seattle, WA 98125
Tel: (206) 367-6525
 

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6. Freebies
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=>  Ebook - Seven Steps to Online Success (983kb)

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If you're new to A Home-Based Business Online, be sure to
visit for many more
freebies.
 

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8. This Week's Web Site Pick - The Entrepreneurial Parent
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From the site:

The Entrepreneurial Parent (EP) Site is a work-family
resource for home office entrepreneurs, with over a hundred
pages of information, inspiration and community spirit for
the growing segment of EPs who are committed to putting
family first, career a close second (and housework a
distant third!).
 

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9. Next Week in A Home-Based Business Online
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-> Home Business Idea of the Week: Business Plan
    Writer
-> Feature Article: Flipping the Switch ... How to Turn
    Off Your Business and Turn On Your Life
-> Newsletter Publishing Tutorial: Part 5 - Building Your
    Subscriber Database I - Initial Subscriber Generation,
    Accepting Free Ads, Announcement Lists, Directories
    and Other Forms of Free Publicity
 

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11. Subscription Management
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13. Contact Information
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Elena Fawkner, Editor
A Home-Based Business Online
Contact By Email

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