How Much Is Your Time Worth? 17 Comments
How Much Is Your Time Worth?

Hey Guys,

Perhaps one of the biggest lessons I learned early on in my internet marketing career was the concept of time being the most precious resource I had.

There is only 24 hours in everyday and that we can’t change, however what we do with our time is within our control and must be managed well in order to really be successful online.

The secret to managing your time well online is grasping the concept of leverage. This is where you pull on other resources, such as people and software to perform tasks for you.

By doing this, you can focus on other tasks and move your operation forward faster than if you were to do everything yourself. This is what great entrepreneurs like Richard Branson and Bill Gates are extremely good at doing.

I notice that a vast majority of newbie internet marketers take a while to grasp this concept, and it can be the crucial difference between someone who makes a full time living online and someone who struggles to make a few sales here and there. I liken it to trying to run in a swimming pool, or drive your car with the hand break on, you may still move forward but it will be a lot slower.

With that said let me now provide some advice on how to leverage your time effectively and produce faster results online.

Control Freaks Will Suffer

control-freaksBefore I provide some practical solutions for outsourcing tasks and increasing your efficiency I first want to discuss the importance of NOT being a control freak.

If you are like me then you will suffer a slight case of perfectionism. Most people laugh about this and think “oh that’s great that you make sure everything is perfect every time”, however I disagree, because although running a tight ship is good, being a perfectionist can actually be detrimental to your success!!

How can that be? Well what I battled with for a while was spending too much time going over every small detail to make sure everything was ‘perfect’. However this was eating into my most precious commodity, TIME!! By eating into my time I was essentially eating into my profits and hurting my business.

Now I am not suggesting that you do a less than acceptable job on your websites and other marketing tasks, but if you suffer from perfectionism and go over everything with a fine tooth comb then be aware of the effect it can have on your time.

The other problem that control freaks/perfectionists can suffer is not wanting to relinquish any of the jobs to other people, because they fear that the job won’t be done well unless they do it themselves.

If this point strikes a chord with you, then you are going to have to fight this and learn to outsource tasks. However don’t worry because I am going to provide great tips for helping you select top quality out source staff for very reasonable prices.

What Tasks Should You Outsource?

The next steps you need to take are working out exactly what tasks that you should outsource. Now this will vary depending on what your personal skills are and also what you actually enjoy doing and what you don’t.

I for one am not a big fan of writing content. To be honest I hate writing articles and content for websites, especially if it is on a  topic that I have no personal interest in. So one of the very first things that I started to outsource was the content creation for my websites.

I will never forget how nice the feeling was, to be able to simply write an email requesting that 20 articles were written for me on specific keywords that I had researched. After I sent the request, within four days I had all my content for a 20 page article site ready to simply cut and paste into my html editor.

By doing this I was able to focus on other marketing tasks for the site, such as the SEO and as a result the website was profitable in half the time and paid for the outsourcing fee very quickly.

Other tasks that you may want to consider getting other people to do are:

  • Graphic Design
  • Keyword Research
  • Link Building
  • Copy Writing
  • Content Writing (blogs, web 2.0 sites, article spinning)

And much more….

You need to look at what you are doing in your online business and seriously consider what you can get someone else to do. I myself much prefer to come up with new ideas for websites and focus on the strategy, rather than spending hours blasting out articles.

Where Do I Find People To Recruit?

searchingThere are a number of places that you can go, to find quality outsource staff. However you may want to consider visiting these sites below, as they are very reputable and where I have found great contractors.

The Philippines is well known for having top quality outsource staff. This is largely due to the fact that they have a very high level of spoken of English and the hiring cost is low.  Therefore I recommend looking for staff there.

Contracting Sites

  • http://www.elance.com/
  • http://manila.craigslist.com.ph/
  • http://www.rentacoder.com/RentACoder/DotNet/default.aspx
  • http://www.bestjobs.ph/

How Do I Make Sure I Get a Good Contractor?

Finding a good quality and reliable contractor can be a matter of trial and error, however with that said there are a few things that you can do to ensure you screen for the best.

What I highly recommend you do is first check their past work, and ask them to provide samples of what they are capable of. Also you might want to get a few contractors that you are considering to do a small test that you give them. This may simply be writing a 400 word article in a given time frame and then assessing who produced the best results.

When you hire a new contractor, you must make sure that you check the quality of their work, and also make sure that it is not in breach of any copyright. Some dodgy/lazy contractors will go to Wikipedia and simply copy and paste and claim it to be their own work! To combat this you can search in Wikipedia yourself, or use other tools like Copyscape to check for duplicates.

Once you find a contractor that you are happy with, I highly recommend that you hold onto them, and also ask them if they know any other friends that are into the same line of work which they recommend.

Good Instructions Are Key

instructionsWhen you are explaining what you want from a contractor it is vital that you are clear and concise with your instructions. A few times I have run into problems where the work produced was not really what I was after. I soon realized a better approach was to provide videos, pictures and other examples of work that I wanted the contractor to closely follow.

When I started to do this, the results where vastly improved! For example you may want to get someone to do your keyword research for you. Therefore what you could do is record a video of your screen as you do your keyword research and walk them through everything that you do. This way you avoid communication breakdowns and get a much better result.

If you are hiring a graphic designer to make a header panel for a website, then I recommend that you give them half a dozen other websites that have the look and feel, and also the colors that you want.

My final point is that, other than getting people do tasks for you, I also recommend that you invest in quality software. Software that can perform a lot of the everyday tasks for you, such as link building, article spinning etc… will cut back the time you have to spend on these jobs and once again move your operation forward a lot faster.

The important thing to note is that if you always hold onto all your money and are too scared to invest in people and tools, then you will get to your destination online a lot slower. However when you start to view these things as an investment, then you are on the path to success.

Thanks!

Matt Carter

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10 Comments to How Much Is Your Time Worth?

  1. Becca's Gravatar Becca
    August 31, 2009 at 9:29 pm | Permalink

    Great Post, I’m currently looking for a software to help me build a website as the one I was using is far too confusing and continually wastes my time.
    Do you know of a good software to use or do u think I should just outsource this
    Kind regards

    Matt Carter Reply:

    Hi Becca,

    Great to hear from you again.

    I think if you are relatively new to internet marketing then it is a very good idea to learn how to use a decent HTML editor, and one that I recommend is Xsite-pro. This tool is designed for internet marketers and is a very good place to learn. Eventually you may want to invest in Dreamweaver but not needed right now.

    Outsourcing website design is definitely a good idea and saves a huge amount of time, however the cost of these types of jobs can be high, so I would say you are best to start with xsite-pro and build your own sites, and perhaps outsource the content and graphics for the sites for now. Then move towards outsourcing your web design later.

    Hope that helps

    Cheers

    Matt

  2. September 2, 2009 at 2:11 am | Permalink

    Hey Matt,

    Great Post. This is definitely the key to scaling your business. I am struggling through this myself. Managing “employees” or outsourced staff definitely tests your ability to clearly communicate.

    - Rs

    Matt Carter Reply:

    Hey Rob,

    Great to hear from you mate. Yeah I think you are right this is the key to scaling your business, and like anything worth doing it can have its challenges.

    Cheers

  3. Jay's Gravatar Jay
    September 2, 2009 at 4:53 am | Permalink

    Thx for the update and post Matt. Excellent advice! I struggle w/time mgmt. getting better tho’. Going into my 3rd month as an affiliate mktr. (affiloblueprint student) almost have 2 sites

    complete… absolutely hate writing, had some articles outsourced in india half were decent half were trash, had to do alot of rewriting myself… will definitely check out the Philippines

    when I see some returns from these sites.

    ~Jay

    Matt Carter Reply:

    Hey Jay,

    Great to hear from you also, and I agree that sometimes you do have to go through some poor contractors until you find a good one. The key is to hold onto the good ones and network with them.

    Keep going strong, you are obviously a fast learner if you have 2 sites up in 3 months!!

    Cheers

  4. September 2, 2009 at 9:41 am | Permalink

    Hi Matt,

    Great post- I also hate content writing and this is the only task I outsource currently. I have used people from both India and Phillipines and found and network with one from each country. In your last but one paragraph, you mention Link Building software and Article Spinner. Can you either advice or write another post on what you use and why? Thanks

  5. darren's Gravatar darren
    September 2, 2009 at 9:58 am | Permalink

    Hey Matt
    I think outsourcing is a great idea.
    I tried to get someone in manila through craigslist but the job would not post.
    It said it was posted but could not be found. Some one on there help forum said that I had to be in Manila to post a job in Manila is this true? becuase it sounds weird!
    Isn’t this the World Wide Web? Need less to say I could not get someone in the Philippines. So I went with Elance and paid more for it……..

    Any Ideas???

    Matt Carter Reply:

    Hey Darren,

    I will send you an email now with a contact in the Phillipines that is reliable for you to
    get articles written

    Matt

  6. September 2, 2009 at 12:56 pm | Permalink

    Hi Matt,

    Awesome post once again man! I fall in the group you mentioned being “perfectionist” and I agree with you 100% that it consumes a lot of time and will only hold back success.

    I am originally from the Philippines but now living here in California. It’s good to know that my country is now considered as the place to get quality contractors/VAs/employees etc. My part time VA as well as my writers are from there.

    I never get tired of reading any of your post man. As always you are a true disciple of “Content” marketing and not “Marketing” content. You give value to your readers. You probably have a very very small unsubscribe rate, don’t you? =)

    You’re one of the few marketers that I look up to.
    Thanks again for this great post Matt.

    Regards,
    Renato

    Matt Carter Reply:

    Hey Renato,

    It always a great to read you comments, seems like you are my number one fan apart from my wife! Ha ha…just messing around.

    Hey if you have contact in the Philippines maybe you could look at setting up a contract business yourself. There is nothing better than working through someone with local knowledge.

    Catch you soon!

    Matt

  7. September 4, 2009 at 1:17 am | Permalink

    Hey Matt,

    I only look upto marketers who are honest, shares their knowledge and do not B.S. people. I probably am your #1 fan. LOL

    Kidding aside, you and Mark Ling are the Top 2 marketers in my list.

    I was born and raised in the Philippines. I have contacts there. I just need to find the right people. I was actually a supervisor/manager in a BPO (Business Process Outsourcing) center there for about 3 years so I know the power and potential of outsourcing. I guess I can use my knowledge on that. And with the right people maybe a business can be established. I’d have a serious look at this possibility when I go home for vacation.

    Talk soon,
    Renato

    Matt Carter Reply:

    Hey Renato,

    Yeah that sounds great mate, let me know how you go with it all, keen to hear about your progress.

    Cheers

  8. September 10, 2009 at 1:51 am | Permalink

    Time is gold.. plan ahead..

  9. maria's Gravatar maria
    October 14, 2009 at 12:10 am | Permalink

    Hi Matt,
    This is a great article! I have outsourced graphics and am considering the same for articles and sales letters but I hadn’t thought about outsourcing link building or keyword research before. I am now going to think very seriously about doing that.

    Cheers,
    Maria

  10. June 8, 2011 at 1:41 am | Permalink

    I can’t believe there is one person who shares invaluable information: you, Matt. I am proud that you mentioned my country. It truly is one of the best places (or the best :) ) to outsource projects.

    I’m now one of your avid fans.

  1. By on August 31, 2009 at 10:38 pm

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