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5 Key Benefits of Influencer Marketing for Your Business

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With over 500,000 active influencers on Instagram alone, you can find an influencer that will fit with your brand perfectly.

Just because someone has a lot of followers doesn’t mean they are going to be a good fit for you. Using the benefits of influencer marketing and how to use it to your advantage is key before you get started.

Continue reading this article to learn how influencer marketing works and the top benefits of influencer marketing for your business.

1. Connects Person to Person

While your brand might  be the coolest out there, let’s face it — we love people! We want to connect with people over brand almost 100% of the time.

For instance, if I am looking for an amazing workout, I would much rather watch a video from an influencer like Jenny Fisher and Andrea Lopez than going on YouTube and finding a magazine that paid someone to demonstrate the workouts. I want to know more about the person and how the workout is working for THEM!

When you’re trying to motivate yourself to workout, heading over to Instagram, Facebook, TikTok or another platform to see what the influencer is posting will help you get a good boost.

When your brand recognizes the power of promoting through a person that has a relationship, a whole new world is going to open up.

2. Small Spend – Big Return

If you’ve looked at how much it costs to hire an influencer you might have just spit your coffee on the screen.

Small spend! What?

Yes! You’re just looking in the wrong places.

Micro-influencers are a great way to get started when you don’t have a lot of money in the budget for influencer marketing. While they might not have a million followers or fans, even a few hundred loyal fans can make a big difference for your brand.

3. Influencers Boost SEO

You want your company to rank in the search engines, but if you’re not getting attention on social, you’re missing out. When your website has good social signals from trusted accounts, this is going to give you a boost that could be just what you needed to pass the competition.

4. Provides True Value

Your Instagram ad might not add a lot of value. If it does — good on you! But it’s hard to add a lot of value when you’re trying to get your message across quickly.

One of the major benefits of influencer marketing is that influencers create content that is going to help your potential customer. Even if you do nothing else, you at least know that you’ve helped someone that may buy from you in the future.

5. Conversions

Have you seen people visiting your website, clicking out of the cart and you just aren’t sure what is going on?

Using influencer marketing can help you get these people off the edge and into buying mode. If people aren’t sure if your product is good or not, but then they see one of their favorite influencers using it, it’s going to be a no-brainer to go spend their money at your website.

The Shining Benefits of Influencer Marketing

Now you know about the top benefits of influencer marketing and you can get to work on your first campaign. It might take a little while to get into the groove, but once you do, you’ll see how it can help your business.

Do you want to learn more about other marketing topics and beyond? Go through the site, find your favs, drop a bookmark and come back soon!

Taxes for Freelancers: 10 Must-Know Tips for a Stress-Free Tax Season

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freelancer taxes

The U.S. now has more than 56.7 million freelance workers and many don’t understand taxes for freelancers.

I’ve been a full-time freelancer since before 2010, so saying I do have a clue about this is an understatement BUT this is NOT tax advice. These are just tips and you should speak to a professional if you aren’t sure about something.

Before we get into the taxes for freelancers tips, I do want to answer a couple of important questions that I had when I first got started. I will also let you know why this matters.

Do I have to file taxes as a freelancer and how much money do I have to make to file my taxes as a freelancer?

As a freelancer, if your gross income is $400 or above, you have to file taxes. You shouldn’t assume that the IRS knows there are expenses that reduce your income. If $400 comes into your business PERIOD, you need to file or you can get into trouble.

While you won’t get in trouble if you don’t owe taxes or if the IRS owes you a refund, do you really want to bank on your tax skills? Just file.

When I say trouble above, we are talking fees out the wazoo and the longer you take to take care of those pesky taxes, the more those fees are going to be. #facepalm

Are freelancers self-employed?

You may have heard that the self-employment tax is 15.3% and you want to know if you’re self-employed as a freelancer. Yes, you are self-employed as a freelancer.

Now that you’ve got the answer to some of the most commonly asked questions when it comes to taxes for freelancers, let’s get into those tips!

1. Know Your Business Structure When Dealing With Taxes for Freelancers

As a freelancer, you need to know your business structure to know how you’ll be paying your taxes.

While business structure can be confusing when you’re starting out, it’s important to get this right as early on as possible.

As a sole proprietor, you are the one that is responsible for all profits and debts.

As a partnership, you’re in partnership with someone and it can either be a general or a limited partnership.

As a limited liability company, you get the benefits of a partnership without being personally reliable like you are as a sole proprietor.

As a corporation, it’s a little more complicated and most freelancers don’t opt for this structure, but if you want to — have at it. Just make sure you understand what it entails.

2. Keep Track of All of Your Income

Organization is your friend. Don’t fight it.

Whether you keep records physically or you have online records of your income, make sure they are organized so you can easily access them. When tax time comes around, you need to be able to easily show where your money came from and how much it was.

You may have some 1099s from clients but if you’re like me, you might get paid through PayPal or other payment methods.

While PayPal does give 1099s to some of its users, you have to have at least 200 transactions and a minimum income amount to get a PayPal 1099.

If you can’t get a 1099 from PayPal to show your income, go into your transactions and filter all income transactions from clients and then screenshot each of those pages of transactions as proof of income.

3.  Use a Tax Software or Accountant to File

Goodness me, please don’t try to file your own taxes. Just don’t.

Why not?

Because having a tax professional or a tax software on your side to defend what’s on your taxes in case of an audit can really put your mind at ease.

If you do your own taxes, your only defense is that you didn’t know and most of the time — that isn’t going to fly.

4. Ready Yourself for the Self-Employment Tax

If you weren’t aware of the 15.3% self-employment tax, this can come as a real punch in the mouth.

You can pay these taxes quarterly, so it makes it a little easier going out or you can pay it at the end of the year in a lump sum.

5. Consider Making Estimated Payments

As we stated in the point above, you’re going to have to pay self-employment taxes. Each quarter, you can pay estimated payments which make it a lot easier for you at the end of the year.

On April 15, June 15th, September 15th, and January 15th, you can pay what you estimate your taxes to be for that quarter. As we said above, you don’t have to do this but if you don’t think you can stomach paying the whole bill at once, this can be a good option for you.

6. Understand Deductions

If you don’t understand what you can deduct from your income for expenses, you might be overpaying in taxes. Here is an example of some things but don’t forget to ask a tax professional if you aren’t sure.

  • Marketing
  • Advertising
  • Travel for business
  • Office furniture
  • Computers
  • Software
  • Services
  • Supplies

If you have other expenses that you believe are related to your business, don’t assume since this can get you into big trouble if you’re audited.

7. Consider Claiming the Home Office Deduction

Since I live in an RV and don’t have a dedicated space, I’m not able to use the home office deduction, but you should look at the requirements and see if it is available to you.

8. Know If You Will Contribute to a Retirement Account

You might not feel like you’re making enough money to contribute to a retirement account right now and you might be right. If you can’t survive off your income and contribute then at least keep it in mind for the future.

There are a few types of retirement accounts you can consider as a freelancer when you’re looking at taxes for freelancers and investing in your future. These are:

  • Solo 401(k)
  • SEP-IRA
  • IRA

9.  Categorize Your Business Expenses

I decided to put this at the bottom since most people aren’t going to go to all this trouble and will probably just drop a box of receipts on their CPA’s desk, but as a best practice, you should categorize your business expenses.

The better your records are, the more tax savings you’ll be able to enjoy.

10. Consider Using an HSA (Health Savings Account)

Having an HSA allows you to pay for qualified medical expenses on a pre-tax basis, which means that you’ll be able to cut your tax bill.  Before you get excited, you need to research how HSAs work and how they can help you.

Now You Understand Taxes for Freelancers

Good on you for getting through all of this and getting a good grip on taxes for freelancers. Now it’s time to go out and take care of those taxes.

Do you want to learn more about personal finance and other important topics? This site is full of articles that are well-researched and brought together to help you live a happier and healthier life.

Check out some of the other articles on the site, drop a bookmark and come back soon.

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How to Make Sure Your Online Business Stays Alive in 2020

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how to keep your online business alive in 2018

While many small businesses don’t make it past their fifth year, you want to make sure you know how to make sure your online business stays alive in 2020. I originally wrote this post in 2018 and I will continue to update it each year with the best business strategies for the year.

Continue reading this article as I share success tips for your business for  2020 and beyond.

How to Make Sure Your Online Business Stays Alive in 2020 – Must-Dos

No matter how scared you are to learn new things, you have to start branching out. Of course, it is going to be difficult to learn new things if you aren’t already somewhat skilled in that area, but if you want to remain on top in 2020, you are going to have to learn to go with the flow.

Now let’s get into what you need to do.

Make Sure Your Business Is Stable Without You

You don’t want to create a business that needs you to run. To make sure that our business continues to be successful in 2020, you want to put systems and people in place so your business can run successfully without you.

Below is a really good video from Dan Lok that goes over building business systems for your business. He hits some points that are a little sensitive for many people, so make sure to give it a listen.

Make a Decision for Your 2020 Business Year

You should already be well on your way with what you are going to do with your business, but let’s face it, a lot of people still have no clue as to what they are doing next week let alone for the entire year of 2020.

The place where people get stuck and go backward in their business is when they do not make any decision. It’s like they are in limbo. The best thing to do is pick a strategy and if it is wrong, that is going to come out soon enough and show itself and you can change what needs to be changed.

Create a Winning Online Marketing Plan

The most important thing you need to remember is that you have to become a marketing master to get noticed online. You can’t go lax on your online marketing plan if you want to be successful online. There are thousands and thousands of other websites that want people’s attention and you need to get to work to get eyeballs on your content.

Content Marketing

In 2019 and into 2020, there’s a lot of competition but there are things you can do to get noticed. One of the things you have to do for your content marketing plan is to create content that is truly helpful for people.

Sometimes you’re going to want to put out content that is okay instead of great content, but please don’t!

That content is not going to do well and you’re going to harm your good reputation.

Think about the platforms that you want to target and give the people on each of the platforms you choose what they want. People viewing Instagram are in a slightly different mindset than those on Facebook and even more so when you look at people on LinkedIn.

PPC

If you don’t know what you’re doing with PPC (pay per click) marketing, you can sink a pretty penny into your campaigns. Before you get started in this area, either hire someone to teach you or hire a company to do the ads for you.

PPC is a great way to get your message in front of people quickly. If you lack patience and want to get your message in front of people quickly so you can keep your business alive in 2020 then this is a good option.

Facebook Ads

Facebook ads can be an inexpensive way to get more people to your offers. As more businesses venture onto Facebook and start using ads, it is going to get more expensive, but right now — it’s not bad at all!

Again, if you don’t know what you’re doing — hire out!

SEO

SEO (search engine optimization) is when you optimize your page to rank for a certain term that you want it to show up for in search engines.

Investing time or money in SEO is a wise strategy for the years coming and can continue to bring you long term success.

Learn what SEO techniques are currently working and put them into practice right away to start building up your organic search traffic.

Social Media Marketing

With billions of people using social media, don’t turn your nose up at it.  You might think it’s only for socializing but it’s a great way to build a relationship with your potential and current customers. You’ll also find people are more than happy to click through to sales pages and often buy after coming to your site from social media.

YouTube Marketing

Almost 2 billion people use YouTube and you need to be on the platform. Even if you don’t want to be on camera, you can create great videos by using PowerPoint slides or screen captures. Get creative and get some videos on YouTube for your business.

How to Make Sure Your Online Business Stays Alive in 2020 – Now You Know

Now you know how to make sure your online business stays alive in 2020. Use these tips to keep your business going for many years.

Do you have any tips you’d like to share with your fellow business owners or a question? Feel free to drop them below.

business stays alive