Do you need help with how to find a business mentor? And why would you need one? That is today’s topic and I will do my best to help you understand why a blog business mentor is important for your online biz.
In the words of Zig Ziglar:
‘A lot of people have gone further than they thought they could because someone else thought they could.’
That is what a mentor can do…they help you see how far you can go! And who doesn’t need that?
I have an awesome recommendation for a mentor at the bottom of this post. It is a membership site that allows you to pay monthly, but the door is not always open. If you need someone to help direct your path, or you need someone to motivate you, consider joining a mastermind group.
This post was originally published October 23rd, 2018 and has been updated to be current with new information. This post may contain affiliate links. If you click a link and make a purchase, I may receive a commission at no extra cost to you. Full disclosure is here.
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My Search For A Blog Mentor
My introduction to blogging came in the form of joining an affiliate marketing education membership.
I thought this was blogging. It wasn’t.
It was a membership site with limited education and a robust affiliate program.
The site was designed to give you limited education in anything that was not affiliate marketing. Specifically affiliate marketing to sell their membership to others.
It is as close to a pyramid scheme as you can get with a legit business. There was also an active chat area, but many of the “ambassadors’ did not like to give anyone real tips or help.
The reason for this was:
- They did not want competition, so they sought to keep you ignorant
- Or, they did not know anything else
Either way, it was not helpful so I left.
As a ‘digital nomad’, I was on my own. I went looking for some real blogging education.
What I mean is that I wanted someone who could teach me how to blog as a business. Which I did not know was a real thing until I discovered that it was.
I thought the membership site would do that, but no.
FYI: I do not recommend membership sites unless you know exactly what they offer and how it can help you.
Get the help and then get out. #moneypit
There are plenty of courses out there for blogging education. The one caveat is that your teacher may have learned how to blog in the “golden” era.
The Golden Era of Blogging
Most of the big names in blogging started during this golden era. From what I can gather, it started around 2010. Blogs were sprouting like mushrooms.
Some of the bloggers in this category are Neil Patel, Yaro Starak, Pat Flynn or Darren Rowse. Even Ruth Soukup, from Elite Blog Academy, got started around this time.
These are legit business owners, who know their stuff. However, life was different back then and blogging has changed…a lot.
And not every blogging program out there teaches how to actually make money.
Nor are they current with new practices.
The blogging landscape shifts as Google changes how they scan for SEO. Or how the Pinterest algorithm is working these days. As these search engines change, so does the blogging that needs it to survive.
Lot’s of bloggers found early success and started teaching what they knew to others.
The problem is that they only learned one way to do things. And it was current then.
That membership program I joined did not update many educational components that were created in…wait for it…2013! So here they are still teaching outdated ways of doing affiliate marketing.
Consumers are wiser now, and old ways just do not work.
When you seek a mentor in these blogging courses, you can find many with this type of limited education.
I found a number of people in these groups who did not like to share information
As I now know, it is because they were having such a hard time making money and they saw everyone as competition. Even a new blogger like me.
I am not telling you this to make you depressed. I just want you to be aware that just because something seems good on the surface, does not mean that you and your blog or website will benefit.
It really is buyer beware.
That membership site flooded the marketplace with positive reviews because everyone in the group was competing with each other to get affiliate sign-ups.
So if you find a group like this, get out as soon as you get what you need from them.
I joined a few Facebook groups for pin sharing, and I thought I might get lucky in one of those groups and find someone who did not mind sharing some wisdom, but it was very ‘salesy’.
What I mean by that is that people kept trying to sell me courses and ebooks. #nothelpful
And you can only go so far on the information that you get in Facebook groups.
What is a blogger to do? Well, first thing is to figure out what you are really looking for.
As well, you need to have a general idea of what you are comfortable with as far as selling to other people goes.
Help For How To Find A Business Mentor
For bloggers, finding a mentor is imperative. You need someone who has already ‘been there’ and who can explain which direction you might want to be heading in.
You also want someone who has knowledge of different business models and different ways to sell.
Blogging can be complicated in that there are so many directions you can take an online business. There are different business models for bloggers, such as:
- Membership sites
- Coaching, either online or over the phone
- Creating products to sell online
You may not want to talk to people on the phone, so that type of coaching may not be right for you.
It is important for you to decide what you are comfortable with. Right now, video is huge, so if you do not want to be on camera you may need someone to talk you into it.
As you develop your website, you want someone who can pitch ideas at you and help you decide which direction to go in.
1. A business mentor can help you decide which model is right for your niche.
Along with that, a mentor will help you understand what kind of personality it takes to do certain types of selling i.e. video or Instagram.
But even if you don’t take your mentors advice, they can still help you direct your path in other ways.
Someone who has navigated through the first couple of years as a blogger has valuable insights on content creation and website navigation.
2. You want your mentor to be someone who currently is where you want to be.
So you have to decide what that is for you.
If you are a newer blogger, think 1 year of blogging or less, then that can mean you might want a mentor who:
- Has been blogging for 2 or 3 years
- Can help you with beginner SEO or what to do next
- Help you start email marketing
- Or encourage your other next steps such as helping you dig yourself out of the weeds of pointless tasks.
If you have an older blog, then you may be seeking someone who can help you figure out:
- Next steps for getting more traffic
- How to achieve steady growth
- The best way to tweak what you already have
- Or can offer more advanced steps like applying to better ad networks.
3. A good mentor is someone who is willing to give you the benefit of their experience
They want to help guide you to doing the work that benefits your blog, and avoiding the time-wasting tasks that have poor ROI (return on investment).
The relationship you have with a mentor can be an official one, or it can be informal such as following in the footsteps of someone you admire.
4. And if you need it, a mentor can also give you valuable feedback
If you allow them to be honest with you.
Not all mentors have to be in your real life.
If you need some tips on success thinking, then you can read books by Tony Robbins and Jack Canfield.
You can also take courses on the subject that most interests you, or that you think your blog can benefit from the most.
When you find a course or book that resonates with you and has had benefit for your blog, then consider starting a relationship with the author if he/she is someone whose success is worth emulating to you.
Why Bloggers Need To Find A Business Mentor
The easiest answer is that you are the sum of the people that you associate with.
If your other bloggers friends know as much as you do, then you will all get stuck at the same places, more or less.
Finding people to associate with who have more knowledge and skills than you do, that you can hang out with and ‘pick their brains’ elevates you to their level.
Think about that.
Here is a video that illustrates my point. And even though it is geared for young guys who are climbing the corporate ladder, many of the points are true for all of us entrepreneurs.
Be Aware! Colorful language ahead!
3 Tips For Finding A Great Business Mentor
You might think success is the most important factor.
But then you can end up in the territory that I was in when I discovered that a person that I wanted to be like got successful in kind of a shady way. #sigh
Which begs the question what is success? And is all success equal?
I do not believe that it is, especially if the successful person does things that border on unethical.
If you think that your mentor has done things in a way that does not resonate with your ethics, find a different mentor.
1. They have experience and steady growth in their own business.
Mentors have experience and have gone through the growing pains towards success.
They have learned things, many different things, and they will know what kinds of training you may need or skills to develop.
2. This means they have been blogging for a number of years.
What that number might be is totally up to you. If you are fairly new to blogging, you only need to look for someone who has been blogging for one or two years, because they can teach you what to focus on for growth.
If you have been blogging a couple of years, you want someone who can tell you how to grow more and scale up your income.
In either case, you do not want someone who is out of touch with current blogging practices.
3. A good mentor can help you take the next steps, regardless of where you are at
Like I said, I thought affiliate marketing was blogging. But it is just one small part. I needed someone who could tell me what my options for growth really are.
I ended up paying for someone to audit my website, because I wanted more email sign ups. That audit was less than $50 and helped me immensely.
I knew then that I needed to be looking for more help for different areas of my website.
Your mentor can look at your site and see what needs to be done with it.
But if you cannot find one person, perhaps you can find, like I did, different people to help you in different areas.
As well, they will talk to you to see what your needs are. If you are not comfortable on camera, you may need a course and your mentor might know of a good one.
Seek out people who are successful with what you want to be successful with.
Naturally, this can change over time, so seek out mentors who are where you want to be all along your route to success.
Think about what you want to get out of the mentor relationship
If you have set clear goals for your blog and know what direction you want to go in, this can greatly improve your chances of finding someone who is a good fit.
And how to reach them.
Set clear expectations
If you need help in one area, then start poking around Facebook groups that specialize in that topic. See if anyone seems like they know their stuff.
Not everyone will have big chunks of time to help you. Be realistic about what you want to do next, and look for that person.
You want a mentor that can help you achieve some, if not all, of them. Or at least set you on the right path.
People are busy and may not have as much time to help you as you may want or expect.
Having clear goals that are broken down into chunks can make what you are asking for easier for your potential mentor.
The best you might be able to hope for is someone who can email you whenever they can.
You need to be open to what other people have to offer you. Be flexible. Once a month may be more than enough help.
An ideal mentoring relationship is also a two-way street.
You have to willing to bring value into the lives others if you expect to get value. That means that you can take their advice and try it, and be able to report back on why it did, or did not, work.
If your mentor offers advice that you can’t or won’t take, they may not be a good fit for you and your business.
Do you need a mentor or a mastermind group?
You can have mentors in mastermind groups, but not all mastermind groups have mentors….say that three times fast!
Mastermind groups have been around forever, and Napoleon Hill talks a lot about mastermind groups in his book “Think and Grow Rich”.
The idea of the mastermind group is to have several peers of varying levels of expertise together in a group that everyone can learn and benefit from.
I am currently in a mastermind that is helping me to advance my website to the next level, and I highly recommend it.
Finding a Mastermind group
You can try Googling “blogging mastermind” but be careful….you may get something that you do not want. I did that and it was scary lol.
I bought a blogging bundle and there was an interesting course in it. Because I had never heard of the author, I went to her website to see what is up.
I was surprised by the level of the content, so I joined the Facebook group.
Honestly, I was just hoping to get a good coupon for one of the other courses.
I was not willing to pay full price when I was not sure of the teaching style.
I really liked the content I was getting, and because it is focused on mindset, which I needed more help with, I was happy to stick around and learn more.
Because of that random encounter, I ended up in Faith Mariah’s Blogging Breakthrough’s Mastermind. You can click the link to see if it is open right now, or get on the waitlist.
If you want to be in a mastermind group, but do not know where to start…
consider creating one and inviting others to join. Look for 3 to 5 people (or more) with different skill-sets who can bring unique information to the table.
As long as the group has the same type of goals.
Then everyone can benefit, because we are all at different stages of blogging and can learn from anyone who has mastered something that we need to master.
The nice thing about mastermind groups is that you can set up a schedule for meeting and use Skype or Facebook groups to get together.
And who knows, you may end up finding mentors within your mastermind group and if not, you may also find something better.
Where else can I find mentors?
The website findamentor.com offers to help you find a mentor, be a mentor, or even create a mastermind group! Not all of the mentors here will be free, so keep that in mind.
Sites like Quora have forums filled with authorities in all areas of life.
This is a great place so scout around and meet some new people. You may not find a mentor right away, but you may find the kind of people who can connect you to one.
Another blogging site that may have the help that you need is the Warrior’s Forum.
In fact the last time I visited the site, the fourth thread down was someone asking for a mentor.
You do not have to discount people in your real life either. There are a lot of people who are non-bloggers who are very good at marketing and business strategy.
Check out your local Meetup groups
Or look in your local papers for networking opportunities. Even local events for book tours (think Rich Dad, Poor Dad for example) will have tons of like-minded people attending.
Along these same lines, do you ever chat with people while you are standing in line? This is a perfect time to elevator pitch your blog and you never know who might be listening!
If you can find opportunities to talk about what you are doing, you may find someone picks up on that. That person may become your new mentor.
Should you pay for a mentor?
I don’t know…can you afford to? If there is someone who can act in a mentor capacity and they are willing to do this for free, then consider going with that.
On the other hand, paying for someone to help you lets you hold them accountable. This is a crucial aspect of mentoring.
Without it, you could be spinning your wheels, going nowhere. You don’t want to waste time as the entire reason to take on a mentor is to save time in getting you further in your development.
I hope that this post has been helpful for anyone who may be thinking of getting themselves a mentor.
It is important to look for mentorship/help for where you and your business are today. Because blogging changes at the same time changing how you want to blog, you do not want to get too far ahead of yourself.
Fix what needs fixing today. Tomorrow will take care of itself.
Mentors can help you to find direction for your blog,
but so can mastermind groups and even networking groups. Be open to finding what you need in a different place than you might normally look.
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