Our First Mastermind Event Of The Year! Marketers Cruise 2012 Takeaways
Last week we returned from Mike Filsaime’s 2012 Marketers Cruise, our 3rd time on this incredible networking vacation tour of the Caribbean. Even more so than last year, it is proving to be a springboard to get our business really growing. I’ve been spending the last couple of days going over my notes and checking out all the really cool resources that were given out. I’ll be sharing many with you. It’s really worth the price of the cruise just to get access to the resources and outright gifts that people share so freely.
Two days before the cruise I went to my VIP mastermind group meeting in Fort Lauderdale and I really feel much more on track. The group leader spent a good deal of time showing us in great detail how to effectively use GoToWebinar. This webinar software is commonly used but often poorly utilized. I have lots of notes about how to use it effectively. Webinars and automated webinars were the hot topic on the cruise, too. I also got a good dose of “medicine” about what my business is really all about.
Sometimes we can’t see the forest for the trees and in many ways I am like that. This “hotseat” session expanded my horizons. I have a a clearer vision now of where I’m headed. If you get the opportunity to get feedback from a high level mastermind group, by all means, take it. Kim stayed at the hotel to work on our upcoming book, Shoot To Sell, while I was at the mastermind meeting. I caught her on Thursday evening, getting the party started early and already connecting with fellow cruisers, Sharon Worsley, Sonia Ricotti, Elaine Grimaldi Allen, Paul Gunter and Andrew Shorten around the pool bar. (Did I mention that we love Fort Lauderdale?)
This year’s cruise was even better than last. Our ports of call were Cozumel, Mexico where we had a wonderful beach party, then on to Costa Rica and zip lining through the rain forest. Our last stop was Colon, Panama, the eastern opening of the Panama Canal. All were tons of fun, along with the sea days. I cannot overemphasize how inspiring this cruise is. I highly recommend that you give it serious consideration if you want to get ahead in the internet marketing business, no matter what your product or service is. You get dinner table access to the top entrepreneurs in the business.
We reconnected with old friends, Kay Kinder and Dave Francis, Lasse Rouhiainen, David Cavanagh, Dereck Celis, Gary Byrne, Flora Li (check out her fun iPhone app, Fashion Buzz), Katie Joy (The Global Butterfly), Rex Richard, Bonnie Terry, Brian Ridgway and many other friends from all over the world. We heard all of the exciting things happening with them and their businesses. Our partner, Dave Sheahan, was there with his family and we enjoyed spending fun times with them and health coach and fellow cruiser, Dr. Joe Kasper. (Yes, we do think exercising is fun!) Lasse is carving quite a name for himself in Europe as the social media expert and David Cavanagh has been on me to head to Thailand to help him with his next workshop in March. David is a brilliant internet marketing teacher. Unfortunately, with our book due to the publisher in April I just don’t think I can do it. Maybe next time, David?
Among the new friends we met were Kasia Nelapa, Mike Hardesty, Tom Beal, David Finsterle-Gawain and his partner, Irina Kossovskaia who won the Heart of Gold award for being the most generous and giving marketers on board. Throughout this year, we will feature many of these people and what they do. We find it very interesting – and inspiring – how many different niches and ways these internet marketers run their businesses. We feel you’ll be inspired by their strategies too.
With 5 mastermind sessions, more networking events than we could attend (after all we were celebrating our anniversary and needed some couple time ;-), networking dinners every night and special shore excursions, we couldn’t avoid making great friends and business connections and learning things that will transform our business! I just don’t know where you could find an event where you get so much fun and connections for such a bargain price. I doubt it exists. Mike Filsaime, Lou Edwards and Donna Fox put together the greatest marketing/networking/vacation event on the planet!
There was so much great stuff we got out of this cruise; here are the top 5 takeaways for us this year:
1) Lots of internet marketers are now using their knowledge and skill to help their local businesses establish a web presence, get new business and grow in this tough economy. This is still a largely untapped market and if you have internet development and marketing skills, including video production, I’m convinced that serious money can be made while helping your local economy. Many small businesses have not adopted internet technology as a marketing tool and they need to.
2) Mobile marketing is now a white-hot topic. Smart phones and tablets are quickly becoming the mechanism that people use to search the internet and if you market online you have to go mobile. This is something we’ll be researching and reporting on more in the coming months.
3) Live events are out; automated webinars are in. These are perfect vehicles to take what you know, turn it into a multimedia product (webinars are in a sense, videos) and then deliver it 24/7 without much work… another way to “shoot it once, sell it for years.” It is getting harder to fill seats with qualified people at live events. I’ve been involved with several of them this year and can say this from experience.
4) Smartphone videos are all the rage and they do a pretty good job; however, even though the tools are getting cheaper and better it is the ability to use them well that will set you apart. I found it amusing to see so many otherwise savvy internet marketers shooting video sideways with their cell phones, or shooting interviews and testimonial videos in the wind. Keep polishing your video production skills and you’ll be ahead of the pack.
5) Networking is an essential business tool. It is especially effective if done in a fun environment like this cruise where you not only meet potential partners but bond with them and form true friendships outside of the business world. I met my best and most important business partner to date on last year’s cruise. You really must get out and learn from others in this fast changing technology, whether that’s a conference, trade show or business cruise. (Next one we’ll be attending? NAB Show 2012!)
After last year’s cruise we came back to a year that saw our passive income almost double. This year we’re aiming for that to happen again. Yes, that sounds incredibly ambitious but after talking with some of the top minds in the internet world who openly gave their expertise, we believe such growth is possible with determination. We’re going to give it our best shot. We just have to keep sharpening the axe and working on that focus thing. And we do not intend to do it at the expense of having a life. My goal is to keep work fun so that even when I’m working I don’t feel like it’s a job.
I hope some of this is useful to you. Things like this cruise experience are an inspiration to me. They get my imagination going and renew my enthusiasm and energy. I love to see people working passionately at something they love and making great money doing so. I hope this is the case for you. If not, it is my sincere wish that we can in some way inspire and assist you in moving in the direction of greater success and happiness.
The amazing annual Internet Marketers Cruise 2013 – where you’ll set sail with the greatest minds in internet marketing! Sharpen your skills, rev up your enthusiasm and have fun on a fabulous cruise with fellow entrepreneurs.
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