3 Business tips to make the second half of your 2016 count

business tips

By Mars Dorian, {grow} Contributing Columnist

It’s the middle of the year and I’ve done a little check-up review of my web business situation.

I always try to learn from my peers and good blog posts to bring my online career to the next level. Call it the mid-year version of the New Year’s resolutions.

Down below are the top three tips I want you to embrace for the second half of 2016. These ideas don’t come from second-rate self-help books but from personal experience.

First of all, I want you to…

Master the art of asking

My mother’s English sucks. She sounds like the female midget version of Arnold Schwarzenegger. Two years ago, she made it her goal to exhibit her artwork at the famous United Nations HQ in freaking New York City. Fast forward to early 2016, and her paintings hang at the infamous UN plaza.

How’d she do it with zero connections and notoriously bad English? Did she pull a Harry Potter? No.

She crashed and burned through endless asking. My mother asked a friend who knew an acquaintance who knew a person working at the German Representation of the UN. It took her almost a year to just talk to a person with power, but my mother finally accomplished it with her friendly forward attitude and by asking anyone in her way. She even found a friend who was willing to play interpreter in exchange for a gallery tour.

You have no idea how many incredible (biz) opportunities await those who dare to ask.

Soon, I’m going to sunny Italy to social media-ish assist an artist while living 3 weeks in a beautiful countryside mansion…for free. I have to ‘teach online marketing’ for a couple of hours a day and can spend most of the day working on my dream projects while enjoying the sexy nature and sun. The price? Opening my mouth with a curious mind.

Change the metaphors about your clients

Huuuge lesson I stole from Tony Robbins, the legendary peak performance coach who invented the coaching industry and trained Mother Theresa, Leo DiCaprio, and Bill Clinton, but probably not in that order.

Tony said we have to be careful with the metaphors we use, as they change our emotional state and attitude toward people. Tony mentioned an early moment in his career where a biz partner had stolen money from him. Back then, he said he was ‘stabbed in the back’, which ruined his mood for weeks, if not months, and sabotaged his productivity. Thankfully, Tony realized the negative power of idioms and changed them ever since.

I did, too.

Recently I met a Twitter friend in real-life who said she experienced trouble talking to people with vastly different world views. Especially manager men driving big Porsches. Turned out to be a problem, since she was an (online) coach and meeting clients with different views happened all the time. Her solution? She changed her metaphors and idioms about the people she coached.

From that day on, she used the noun “Schatz” for her clients and people she didn’t know (yet).

Schatz is German for treasure, but it can also mean ‘darling’ and ‘sweet person’. Ever since seeing her clients as sweet treasures, the conversations dramatically changed for the better, and so did her revenue.

How would your biz change if you’d see your clients as ‘treasures’, not only in the financial form, but also as chests full of value and surprises you can learn from?

Remember the business you’re REALLY in

I’m sorry for the unbelievable time travel but there was a moment in history when blogging was a big thing. Back then, we’re talking the prehistoric 2009 era, I proudly branded myself as a Pro-Blogger because blogging was my major money maker. I sold services, coaching and e-books through my posts and thought it would last for-ever.

Fast forward to the present. If I’d call myself a blogger today, I’d be homeless.

My current label is ‘creative content provider who crafts edu-tainment in the form of written and visual stories’. In a general sense, I provide entertainment that puts value into people’s lives, independent of the medium I use. In 2016, it’s through ebooks and illustrations, but in five years it might be something different. I’m not a blogger anymore; blogging is just one of the maaaany tools I use to build my biz.

In the offline world, I see many people going out of business because they have associated their careers with the tools of the trade. Taxi drivers in Germany, and Europe in general, fear, FEAR, F-E-A-R Uber. They still think their biz is driving a taxi, when in fact it’s providing comfortable mobility.

So if you think you’re a social media manager, think again. Social media might not be here in 5-10 years, or it might morph into something completely different. And then what? You become a victim of the social media manager mass extinction. No meteor shower required.

Remember, social media is just the tool you use to provide the real value: connecting businesses with (potential) customers to drive sales. Tools change with time and can become useless, but value never goes out of business, only the delivery changes.

Always remember the business you are REALLY in.


The second half of the year can be an ‘Ode to Joy’ for both yourself and your wallet.

What seldom-heard tip can you share?

mars dorian
Mars Dorian
draws funky illustrations and pens sci-fi thrillers for the Internet Generation. His latest novel is available on Amazon for just $2.99! Consider his artwork for your next project: http://www.marsdorian.com
Original illustration by the author.

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