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The BEST Free, Invoicing Web App

I recently purchased a course on developing business videos. I plan on perfecting my craft and becoming a better videographer.

However – I stumbled on the best invoicing app I have ever laid eyes on, and best of all it’s FREE.

There are countless other invoicing apps, and they range from $10-$100+/month depending on your needs.

The site that I use (and they just came out with a mobile app as well) is WAVE.

These guys make the entire process so incredibly easy. You just set up a profile, you can connect payments via Stripe (a PayPal alternative) and  then you just create invoices, and send them to your customers through the app.

Your customers can then pay you via their invoice that they receive in the mail.

You also get to see if your customer viewed the invoice or not – and the best part is that when they pay you via Stripe, your invoices change themselves to “PAID”.

The site also lets you send reminders when people are late to pay their invoices, and it gives you a useful overview of your incoming and outgoing funds by the month.

I can’t recommend WAVE enough for it’s incredible invoicing capabilities. As a freelancer, I wouldn’t want to use anything else.

 

A mystery swag bag arrived today!

I just checked my mail and received an airmail package from Estonia.

Weird, I thought… Until I remembered that the team at Toggl (a time keeping web app that I love and recommend) offered to send me a T-Shirt.

You could say they over delivered :)

They sent stickers, a pen, a bag, and a shirt.

All because I wrote to them with some feedback.

Pretty cool, huh?

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20140416-180438.jpg

A creative ad that hit me like a ton of bricks

Lately I’ve been exposed to many similar messages talking about the importance of giving value, giving of yourself, and improving situations wherever possible.

This video hit me like a ton of bricks. Such a beautifully done video.

Hope you enjoy it as much as I did.

Start With WHY: What’s Your “WHY”?

Simon Sinek Start With Why

Simon Sinek’s “Golden Circle”

WHY do you do what you do?

When someone asks you what you do for a living, what’s your answer?

For most of us, it goes something like this:

“I’m a fitness coach, I train people to get into great shape, I make a diet plan for them, and help them achieve the lifestyle and life that they deserve.”

The problem with the above explanation is that this person started with WHAT they do, HOW they do it, and ended with WHY.

I was referred to a Ted Talk by Simon Sinek that drives this point home. I’m reading his book right now “Start With Why” and in this book he explains what separates uber-successful companies and politicians from companies that fail to gain a strong following of believers.

The common thread is that the innovators start with WHY they do instead of with WHAT they do.

Our beliefs are what tie us together. If we can attract people who believe the same ideas and dreams that we do, then our following can grow in this way.

A funny quote Simon said in his speech was that Martin Luther King didn’t say “I have a PLAN.” he started with “I have a DREAM.” It’s an ideal, a belief, a vision.

One of my current goals is to solve this question myself.

What is my WHY?

I encourage you, dear reader, to think about what your WHY is.

For example – Apple starts with their WHY instead of their WHAT. Instead of saying “We build super fast and top-of-the-line computers, we do this with the latest technology and all the best and greatest features, do you want to buy one?”

Apple starts with their WHY, their vision. They say something like “”In everything we do, we believe in challenging the status quo and thinking differently. We do this by making our products beautifully designed and simple to use. We just happen to make great computers. Do you want to buy one?”

Currently, I write in this blog because I challenge the idea that people are forced to accept to live a normal 9-5 routine, I believe that people can use clever tools and tricks online to live fruitfully, with a job-replacing income. I spend dollars and days of my life finding the most useful tactics for my readers. I want to empower people who think it can’t be done.

Not very poetic, but that’s my why.

What’s YOUR WHY? 

P.S. – Here’s the “Start with WHY” Ted Talk:

People often say that motivation doesn’t last…

Here are some great motivational images that I stumbled on today. I wanted to share my favorites with you:

People aren't against you.

Failure

The Most Dangerous Risk of All

Motivation doesn't last

Everyone you meet

Comfort

 

If you’ve got any motivational quotes you want to add, leave them in the comments :)

-Simon

My Top 6 Free Productivity Apps That Have Changed My Work Life

I see about 10 new posts on productivity every day. I browse various blogs, reddit, and YouTube, and productivity is something that people just cannot wrap their heads around.

I’ve followed lots of productivity advice in my life, and I’ve had mixed results.

I’ve had periods where I’m “on fire” and I’ve had weeks where I felt like I accomplished nothing.

If you’re in a funk right now, I hope that using some of these tips will get you going again.

Instead of a generic productivity article where I tell you to “eat right, exercise, sleep enough, drink enough water, take 1 step forward, and be grateful…”

I’ll instead detail the apps that you can download today and have a tangible positive effect on your work life.

Like any app or trick or secret, it’s all about how you use the apps. Some apps won’t mesh with you, and some will boost your results. There are hundreds of options out there, these are just what have worked for me.

Leave a comment below the post if you’d like to add an app or tool that you use and love.

The Top 6 *FREE* Productivity Apps That Have Changed My Work Life

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The Roost Stand – A Review

One blogger who I love to follow is Charles Ngo. He’s not only an expert mobile and dating marketer, but he’s a big supporter of keeping correct posture while working.

As a guy who works from home and sits nearly the entire day, his suggestions are targeted directly to someone like me.

One such suggestion recently was the “Roost Stand.”

You see, the problem with my posture is that I work on a laptop. So every day, around 3 or 4 pm, I start to feel my upper back tightening and getting sore, and it’s because I’m looking slightly downward. The roost stand attaches to your laptop to bring the screen to just below eye-level.

Credit: SpicyTec.com

Credit: SpicyTec.com

The Roost Stand comes in at around $80 after shipping.

I decided that $80 is about 2 visits to the chiropractor, and it’s way less than purchasing another monitor. More so, the Roost Stand is pretty cool looking, has a beautiful website design (an alteration of a Shopify template) and could make an immediate impact in my well-being, and sore back.

So I decided to buy a Roost Stand. I actually used Bitcoin. It was my first purchase using Bitcoin, so that was pretty cool.

Roost Stand Review:

roost stand review

Credit: MakerFaire.com

The stand took some getting used to in the beginning. It took about 2 days until it started feeling more normal. I also had to buy a wireless keyboard, as my old wired one just wasn’t cutting it, and my wrists weren’t comfortable.

Before using the Roost Stand, my shoulders would start to ache at around 3 PM every day. It was like my body’s alarm clock – I knew it was 3 PM when my shoulders started to ache. That problem is now gone. For this alone, I feel like the Roost stand is worth it.

The compactness of the stand is another very cool thing. If I want to go work at a library or coffee shop with this stand, it can be folded and packed away. I can throw in my slim wireless keyboard and be good to go.

It clips in quite easily – I suggest starting with one corner of the laptop, and then following with the next corner.

All in all, I would give this stand a solid rating. Let’s call it an A-. I would like to be able to adjust the height of the screen. That’s one thing that maybe they can create in a future model. Reason being that every desk and chair height is not equal. So some people might want to adjust how high or low the screen is. (They have an adjustment based on screen size, but I would like to adjust more than that.)

Keep in mind that this stand does not work with all laptops. You will need to go visit their website and see if it fits your particular make and model.

For more information, visit the Roost Stand website.

The Most Exciting E-Commerce Proposal

My close friend who has slept on my couch in the past is in a nationally televised business competition. Now it’s my chance to help his company win.

This is the e-mail I received last night from my friend’s business partner. They are in a Shopify Build-A-Business competition. First place is a handsome monetary reward plus the opportunity to meet their mentor. I think it’s Gary Vanderchuck, as he’s the mentor in the ‘Food and Drink’ category, where their store is.

Two Armadillos

Jimmy (Left) and I played soccer together in elementary school. Greg is his friend from University.

I jumped on the opportunity. I am really excited. I have a month to boost their SEO for terms like “healthy snacks for kids”, and “snacks for pre diabetes” and “crunchy chickpea snack,” and so on.

Today I will do a lot of planning work, including keyword planning to see which words to focus on, outreach planning to try and grab some exposure on places like Reddit and YouTube (I’ll be using Channelpages to search the YouTube database… I found it yesterday, very, very cool.)

I’ll also be chatting with the Shopify support team and planning an A/B optimization test for their funnel. I am not a great Shopify coder, so I may need to contact some previously hired help, or see if I can find someone on Fiverr if it’s a small enough fix.

I’m also excited about what this experience can launch me into, and what it would mean if I can help them win.

Besides the fact that if they win, they potentially could become a million dollar company, I could also become an SEO and Conversion consultant with big results and could command a healthy fee.

Although I love passive income, I don’t love how fickle Google is. I am in the stages of learning about using e-mail marketing (and I also plan on using it in this sales push for my friend’s company) – but I also love helping real people, and real businesses. It feels great to do something that can make a serious difference.

If they win this competition, it means lots of jobs created, lots of celebration, lots of fun. It also probably would mean lots of freelance work for me through referrals. I would imagine.

So this will be a great test, a great experience, and I’m thrilled at the opportunity.

 

The Company I'll Be Helping This Month:
My friend Jimmy, who I attended elementary school with, and have played lots of games of poker with, is an unbelievable business man and entrepreneur. He and his friend Greg came up with a snack company, Two Armadillos Snacks. They sell roasted, seasoned chickpeas, a healthy alternative to potato chips, pretzels, and the like. They are delicious, and you don’t feel as guilty as eating a bag of doritos :) www.2armadillos.com

Kopywriting Kourse by Neville Medhora – My Unbiased Review

I recently went through Neville Mehora’s ‘Kopywriting Kourse’ which, as far as I can tell, is still available on AppSumo.com.

I like the hand-written effect a lot, actually.

I like the hand-written effect a lot, actually.

I believe it was originally a $200 product, and it currently sells for $69. So maybe due to the fact that it’s a year or more old, it’s no longer price at more than $100.

So is this course worth 69 bucks?

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Where I’m At *Right Now*

At this very moment I’m listening to Baroque music boom through my TV.

I’m thinking about the speech I have to give at my friend’s wedding tomorrow, and frankly it’s irritating my stomach.

I want to blog more often. I want to give future readers to this blog some value. I’m not sure what exactly a reader like yourself needs. Are you a beginner with no experience? Are you intermediate with some questions? You’re probably not advanced, or you wouldn’t be here.

I recently have been reading a lot about copywriting. I’ve been enjoying Neville Medhora’s blog a lot, actually. His technique can come off a bit crass, but he’s grabbed my attention, and surely many others.

I’ve seen my revenues slide over the past several months.

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