Work Family Balance

Work Family Life Balance

One of the members of our community, Emily Lewis, asked me to talk about work-life balance in her pet sitting business. There are two main topics I want to cover.

First is when you have young children, and you’re trying to build your business, and I did a video about this last year. Here is a link to that video: https://youtu.be/302z5z1PikI

Hire a manager.

When I started having my family, having Lucy, that’s when I hired my first manager. When I hired her, I wasn’t expecting to keep her on to work for me.

I was planning to have her come for three months and cover things for me to be a new mom and enjoy my new baby. I ended up loving mothering so much, and she was doing such an amazing job that I decided to keep her on. When Lucy got a little bit older, I realized that I had all this time now because my manager was taking care of things.

She was taking care of all of the administrative tasks for me, which freed up so much of my time to focus on growing the pet sitting business. So that is why I kept her on. The year that I did hire her, I made an additional $53,000. So it was like, “Well, this is a no-brainer.”

Have a support team around you.

When you hear me talk about building your team, I’m not only just talking about building your team of pet sitters. I’m talking about your support team around you. I now have three managers and a virtual assistant that helps me with everything.

I can focus on marketing and getting new clients, and having our current clients booked more frequently. That’s where my manager onboarding system comes from.

I think it’s important. It is part of a process.

Work Family Balance

 

The manager also helps to free up your time to be a mom as well.

Have an organized household and set boundaries.

My kids are now in school. They’re at school every day until four, and then I can focus on the business. So my suggestion for when you have young children is get a support staff around you, and work when the baby sleeps, and work when your husband gets home from work. That’s what I used to do. I used to hang with my kids, and then when he got home, that’s when I would sit down and get my work done.

Now, if you’re asking about COVID, that’s a whole different ball of wax. If your kids are home, luckily, my kids are in Catholic school. So they are in school full time. They have been since September.

Last spring was not easy, and my suggestion for that is you need to be super-duper, duper organized in your household, and setting boundaries. Ensuring everything’s set up at the beginning of the day, in their specific spots. Make sure they have everything they need. Lunch is made the night before, and have space for just yourself to work in your home.

We have a system in my house when I have a smiley face on my door; they’re allowed to come in. When they have a sad face on the door, that means they are not allowed to come in. That means I’m either doing a Facebook Live, I’m recording a video, I’m on phone calls, I’m teaching. So that’s kind of how they know whether they can access the office or not.

Delegate duties to your manager.

My manager handles all phone calls, emails, scheduling, and keeping track of all of the sitters availability. My hiring manager takes care of the sitter recruiting, the sitter assessments, and the sitter onboarding. Then she manages them as well.

Sue is my main manager that does all of the face-to-face client work. I have my sitter manager and my hiring manager, Jessica. My Online Business Manager is Michael, and he runs both sides of my business, so Pet Nanny and Pet Nanny Coach. He helps with all tech and marketing stuff and organizing all the projects that we’re working on in my pet sitting business.

When you get to a point in your business where you have 2,000 clients to service, that managerial role does become a full-time job and will suck up all of your time. That is when I suggest bringing on the manager and again, freeing up your time to be with your children.

I can go to any school function that they need me, all the sports events, that’s all taken care of because I am not the system in my pet sitting business. I’ve created a business that’s a machine that runs without me because of the amazing support system and the systems that I have put into place. So I can run the business.

Create a miraculous working routine.

So you want to make sure you’re getting up, and you’re doing something positive for your mind. Whether that’s listening to a positive podcast, reading something positive, doing yoga, exercising, something where you are starting your day off on the right foot. Mine includes Peloton and meditation.

Get up and get dressed.

During COVID, people were just kind of lounging around in their sweat pants, and it’s not good for motivation. So get up, get dressed, put a little makeup on, do your hair, and that’s going to help with the motivation.

Have a designated workspace.

So everybody in my home knows that when this door’s closed, a sad face is on the door, that mommy is working, and I’m not to be interrupted until I come out and give them the A-okay.

Now, if they’re very little, obviously that’s going to be different, but my kids are a little older now. So that’s a system that works for us.

Plan weekly.

You want to make sure that you’re doing your weekly planning on Sundays. We call it the see it through strategy where you’re taking everything out of your mind, put it onto paper, and put it onto your calendar so that you know exactly what you’re working on every day.

Then on Friday, you’re going to do the Finish Up Friday hour where you’re going to go through and see all the tasks you had on your calendar to see what wasn’t completed. Then you’re going to put that on the following week’s calendar.

Define boundaries with family and friends.

I used to talk on the phone all the time with my friends during the day. I don’t answer it anymore. I don’t answer text messages until the day is over. I’m taking care of my family and building a business, and now they know that I’m not available to chat about the Real Housewives during workdays.

Meal prep.

I try to plan my meals every week. I use an app called Plan To Eat, which I love. I put the recipes in for the week. It creates a shopping list. Billy does all the food shopping. He has the app, and he knows exactly what we need to buy at the store because I have everything planned for the week. I try to do as much prep work at the beginning of the week.

Chopping the onions or making the ziti, or today I’m making shepherd’s pie. I try to do as much as I can at the beginning of the week.

Design an end of day routine.

When you have a family, you want to turn off your computer, turn off your phone and be present with them. I have a whole routine that I’m shutting down for the day, and then I’m with the family, and that’s it.

Again, that’s from having that support team. You’re not on-call 24/7. Having a pet sitting business for years, I was on-call seven days a week, 365 days a year, and that’s not the way a business is supposed to be. It’s supposed to add to your life, and you need to create these support systems around you so that you can shut it down at the end of the day and be with your family.

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7 Tax-Saving Tips for Pet Sitters

7 Tax-Saving Tips for Pet Sitters

  Grab your FREE 7 Tax-Saving Tips For Pet Sitting Businesses PDF here!

 

Tax time is upon us. I want to talk about seven tax saving tips for your pet sitting business.

1. Keep your tax and financial documents for at least seven years.

If you’re ever audited you’ll need those records. Any claims made at tax time require supporting documentation. Keeping good records is an excellent idea for any pet sitting business owner because it encourages organization, always a good thing.

It’s challenging to reconstruct records at a later date. To give you a real quick story about how this is very important, I have been audited twice. They tried to audit me one year after the second audit that I had won. I’m supposed to have five years safe harbor.

My accountant went back and said, “Hey, you guys audited Colleen last year.” They said, “We have no record of that. We have no documentation of that. You need to prove that we did.” Thankfully, we had all of our records. I was able to send it to them so that they couldn’t continue with the audit.

So, a simple system I use is Dropbox, and I have a Financials folder. I have a folder for each year where I store all of my financial documents. There you go, a straightforward system that you can implement today in your business.

2. Understand your loans.

The IRS doesn’t classify most business loans as income. The interest paid on loans is generally a deductible expense. It’s essential to have records regarding the use of any loans, which may be for equipment, or to finance some other activity.

In the year 2020, with all those PPP loans, you must understand how that implicates your taxes and how it’s forgiven if you took out a PPP loan.

3. Know the different types of audits.

First, there’s an office audit, which generally is a simple audit where you’ll be requested to report to your local IRS office to resolve some slight discrepancy.

Then, there’s a correspondence audit where they’ll, it’s hard to say, where they’ll ask you to mail in some documentation.

Then, there’s a field audit, which I went through. These tend to be comprehensive audits conducted at your place of business—very, very stressful. I would never want any of you to have to go through what I went through. I ended up winning, by the way, which was good.

Then, lastly is the criminal investigation audit, which, hopefully, will never happen to anybody watching this video. If you get notified that a criminal investigation audit is happening to you, immediately consult your lawyer because you’re suspected of tax evasion.

4. Pay your quarterly tax bill.

When you have an employer, your taxes are regularly taken out of your paycheck. If you’re self-employed, you’re required to estimate your tax each quarter and pay it. Failure to pay this can result in a significant tax penalty.

You might also end up with an enormous tax bill than you can handle in a single payment.

7 Tax-Saving Tips for Pet Sitters

 

I did not pay my quarterly taxes for years, and I would stress about it, and I would toss and turn, “Oh my gosh, am I going to have enough money to pay the taxman?” One year I did get caught with a $15,000 bill that I was not prepared for. So, I never again missed a quarterly payment after that experience.

5. Prepare early.

The vast number of tax filers wait until the last minute. If you’re expecting a refund, this can be the worst time to file. The IRS is overwhelmed with all the tax returns that pour in. So, preparing your tax return early leaves you time to find any missing documents and answer any questions, all right? It just gives you peace of mind to get it done with, get the monkey off your back.

6. Get help.

Depending on your business finances’ complexity, hiring an expert to prepare your pet sitting business tax return is an excellent idea.

In theory, the money you spend ought to result in a smaller tax burden. It can be helpful if any legal issues arise. The price you’re going to pay for using an accountant and a CPA lets you know what you can be deducted. You don’t know what you don’t know. That’s going to be money in your pocket that you’re not paying to the government. I’s going to pay for itself to use an accountant or a CPA. That’s number one.

Number two, when I was audited, my accountant was so awesome. He dealt with the whole thing. He knew exactly how to structure the audit. He knew exactly what language to use. He knew exactly how to organize everything, where I easily won that audit.

Without him, I don’t even know what would have happened. That audit was for using independent contractors appropriately. That’s a whole other story. Thankfully I had him because he was an MVP in that experience.

7. Avoid using taxes collected from employee payroll, or that you put aside to pay business expenses.

Don’t do that. That happens when you have all of your money in one account.

My tip for you today is to create a bank account outside of your regular bank. I want you to title it The Government’s Money. It’s not your money.

Every week, you’re going to take a percentage of your revenue; you’re going to transfer it out of your bank into the government money account. By the time you’re ready to pay your quarterly tax bill, the money is there set aside, and you’re not tempted to touch it because it’s outside of your regular bank, out of sight, out of mind, okay?

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How to Manage Fear in Your Business

How to Manage Fear In Your Pet Sitting Business

My mission in 2021 is to help as many pet sitting business owners get their businesses back after COVID. I will be popping in here every week to do these little mini-lessons. Lorraine, a member of our community, asked me to focus on fears.

Historically, fear has helped us as humans stay alive. As we’ve evolved, what it’s done is pretty much stop most people from taking action in their lives. Back in the day when we were cavemen, fear helped us to stay alive. If you’re like walking down the highway and a car is coming, and you feel fear, that’s a good fear.

Suppose you’re fearful of judgment, failing, embarrassment, and success; all these other fears we have are not serving us at all.

Remember, fear is just an unpleasant emotion.

Back in the day, I had an intense fear of judgment and failure, which kept me stuck for a very, very, very long time. I’m here to tell you today is that fear is just an unpleasant emotion. It’s in our minds. It’s make-believe. You’re making yourself believe something. Most people are afraid of feeling unpleasant emotions, so they’ll avoid doing anything that brings those up. That’s what keeps us stuck.

Start moving through fear with your courage.

I do not like speaking live in front of people, but I’m doing it anyway. I was fearful of embarrassing myself, of saying something stupid. What I do is I stop when I start feeling that emotion; I close my eyes I take a deep breath. I feel the fear. And I remind myself that it is all just in my mind, and I’m going to act despite it anyway.

How to Manage Fear in Your Business

 

This is a mantra that I say to myself many times that helps calm me. I deal with a lot of anxiety. I’ll wake up in the middle of the night with anxiety for absolutely no reason.

That is my mini-lesson for you today. Understanding that fear is in your mind. Stopping yourself when you are feeling fearful. Reminding yourself that this is in your mind, you’re making yourself believe something that isn’t true.

It’s not necessary. You’re causing suffering in your own life. I cause suffering in my own life. When in reality, that was just false belief systems that I was creating in my mind.

When you start doing this, and you start moving through fear, that’s when you start gaining confidence through your courage, and it’s just going to get easier.

Do meditation.

Another thing that you can do to start helping with this is meditation. I know meditation was challenging for me. When I first started meditating, I would last a minute. Now I’m up to about 25 minutes.

Meditating and EFT tapping are good ones. You go to YouTube and look up EFT tapping for fear. Listening to binaural beats at night when you’re going to bed. Hypnosis. There are a million things that you can do to start working through your fear.

Mind work is the most important one. It is understanding that you are the thinker of your thoughts. The thoughts that you’re thinking are what is creating the fear in your body. Without your mind, the fear wouldn’t exist.

Journaling helps, writing this stuff down. So helpful. I tell my students to create a morning practice for themselves when they get up and do something positive. Whether if you’re spiritual. If it’s reading scripture. If it’s reading something or listening to something positive, journaling, meditation, exercise, all good things for helping deal with these fears.

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My Secret Sauce to Building a Lucrative Pet Sitting Career

My Secret Sauce to Building a Lucrative Pet Sitting Career

I realized that I had been making videos for members of the pet sitting industry for many years. Some of you may not know who I am if you’re new to the industry. So I wanted to take this opportunity to let you know a little bit about me and how I was able to make millions was in the pet sitting industry, and how I became to be a coach to help others create lucrative pet sitting careers.

Flashback to 2001. I was a special education teacher teaching Down syndrome children, and I was completely unhappy in my career. As much as I loved the children, I did not feel like I was supposed to be doing this. I felt like I was trapped in the classroom all day. I wanted to be out in the fresh air, and I didn’t know what to do. I graduated from Ohio State with a special ed degree. So I had just assumed that this is what my path is supposed to be, to be a teacher.

After a heartfelt conversation with my parents where they asked me, “Colleen if you could do anything, what would it be?” And I said, “Well, I wouldn’t mind playing with dogs all day.” I said it as a joke, but it ended up being the sentence that changed my life. I decided at that moment that I was going to create a business based on my love of animals. That was how Pet Nanny started.

The problem was I knew nothing about business. Back then, I think there was like one book on the market. I read the book, and I followed the instructions, but that’s pretty much all I knew about business.

I didn’t know about business, marketing, team building, systemizing your business, and managing my finances. I spent a lot of years spinning my wheels. I did not get very far with the company. I ended up creating another job for myself, where I was working a lot.

I had clients, but non-ideal pet-sitting clients who didn’t respect me. They took advantage of me, called me all hours of the day and night. I had no free time. I’d never spent the night in my bed because I was always at my client’s houses, and it got exhausting.

To me, it was like I was maybe making a little more than I was when I was teaching, but I had no free time whatsoever. I completely lost my freedom. So at that point, I was trying to decide, do I want to do this? Or do I want to start something else? Maybe pharmaceutical sales, go back to teaching. I didn’t know.

Then again, I made the decision. I’m going to give this a go. I’m going to try to create a business that can run without me being an integral part of running it.

Create a business that can run without you being the integral part of having it run.

So I hired a business coach. I attended events, read books, and did everything. I implemented, and I got results.

How I've Made Millions in the Pet Sitting Industry 2


Currently, I have three managers that manage the company and a staff of 40 pet sitters that go out to take care of my client’s home. On average, we make around $75,000 a month in revenue, and I only have to work one hour a week in the business.

I started knowing absolutely nothing to get where I am today. It took me a lot of years to get to where I am today.

That’s how you will market your business, how you’re going to get new customers, how you’re going to wow your customers, and how you’re going to nurture your current customer list.

Have support. Find amazing pet sitters.

This is how you’re going to assess to make sure they’re going to be a good fit to work with your company, and it’s how you’re going to onboard them.

So by the time they’re ready to get started with your customers, they’re going to do a fantastic job.

What systems do you need in your business for it to run like a well-oiled machine? How to document them and build out your online business hub so that your business can run without you. That is how you know you have a true business.

Have the freedom to continue growing the business and doing things you love.

Guys, money is a good thing. Think about all of the things you can do and all of the charities you can commit your time to if you have extra money.

And freedom. You’re not stuck working like I was seven days a week, 365 days a year. You can have the freedom to continue growing the business on the backend. You can have the freedom to take part in hobbies that you love. Horseback riding, tennis, and paddle tennis. You like to travel. You want to work from different areas. You can do that when you build this type of business.

How many pet owners and pet lovers in your community can you impact with your amazing service?

So by you building this awesome pet sitting business, you’re going to be able to service so many more pet lovers and their furry pals and provide them with stellar pet care. And become a standout in the pet sitting industry.

Hey there, Newbie Pet Sitter! Are you feeling stuck or overwhelmed with starting your pet sitting business? Fret no longer, my friend. I’ve got ya covered!

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4 Ways to Increase Sales in Your Pet Sitting Business

4 Ways to Increase Sales in Your Pet Sitting Business

I get a million questions about marketing and how do I make more money? We tend to over-complicate things. It’s pretty simple.

1. Increase the number of new customers you bring to your business.

This is where you want to have a sales system where you are getting your pet sitting business, messaging, and offers out in front of new people and adding new people to your customer list.

2. Increase customer frequency.

It means getting your current customers to book from you more frequently. Again, you need to have a sales system to incentivize and remind your existing customer list to book service from you.

4 Ways to Increase Sales in Your Pet Sitting Business

 

It’s also the most forgotten practice in business. You have a customer list. These are the people that are willing and ready to buy from you.

3. Increase average transaction value.

Having your customers spend more money each time they book from you. Well, how do you do this?

Don’t just offer the basic 30-minute visit. Go to my website at petnannymainline.com, and you go to the services page, you will see that I offer a wide array of services, from 15, 30, 45 minutes, 60-minute, two-hour visits.

Plus, we have an entire menu of add-on services, or we call them concierge services. So when our customers are traveling, we will not only do the pet-sitting, dog-walking, and house sitting, but we will take care of an array of things that they need to be done in their home to keep things running smoothly for them. This will increase the average customer transaction.

4. Lastly, increase profit margin.

Increase your profit margins, meaning you need to make more with each visit booked. How do you do this? You can streamline and lower your expenses, or you can raise your rates.

Think about your compensation schedule for your sitters, as well. That’s another way to increase your profit margins.

Howdy, Pet Lover! Are you struggling with attracting new clients to your pet sitting business? Would you like to have a consistent pipeline of new clients coming to your business? Well, wait no longer, my friend. Grab my FREE report, 125 Ways To Get More Pet Sitting Clients. This resource is 100% FREE and is my gift to you. Enjoy!
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How to be Ready for 2021

How to be Ready for 2021

We previously talked about your pet sitting business vision and the results that you want to create and get really, really, really clear. To get there, we need to start taking some action, maybe action that we haven’t taken in the past, or we need to possibly stop doing some of the things that we are doing to get to where we want to go.

How to be Ready for 2021

 

I want you to think about three things.

The first thing we’re going to talk about is what you need to stop doing to get to where you want to go.

If you’re going to create a six-figure pet sitting business, perhaps you need to stop doing the pet sitting because if you are still doing the dog walking and the pet sitting, there’s only a certain number of hours in the day you can trade for dollars.

Therefore, you’re going to have a cap on the amount of income you want to create. If you’re going to build that multiple six-figure lucrative pet-sitting career, perhaps that is what you need to stop doing.

So maybe you will have already stopped doing the pet sitting, but you’re spending your entire day answering phones, returning emails, doing all the scheduling, doing the payroll, et cetera. Maybe you need to stop doing all aspects of the administration of the pet sitting business.

When I flipped over from being a pet sitter and dog walker and took over all the managerial roles, that became a full-time job very quickly. Perhaps those are the roles that you shouldn’t be focusing on anymore, that you should delegate to a manager to focus on income-generating activities.

What else do you need to stop doing in your business? Perhaps it is the hiring, that’s another thing. After my business got to a certain point, I spent so so much time interviewing and processing, and onboarding new sitters that it ate up all my time. And again, I was then not focused on income-generating activities.

Think about what we need to keep doing.

Maybe you have a fantastic way with people, and when issues pop up, your clients love how you handle problems. Perhaps you have the manager doing the other admin stuff, but you’re going to keep dealing with the issue resolution.

Maybe you’re good at writing emails or writing letters. Perhaps you’re good at smoothing things over. This is a role that you probably don’t want to give up if that is the case.

Maybe you have a keen sense of the type of people you want to hire for your business so maybe hiring needs to stay on your list of duties. Perhaps you need to keep doing excellent video content.

Maybe you’ve done these how-to videos that have gotten a lot of engagement on social media. These are the types of things, really think about what you need to keep doing in your business.

What do you need to start doing

Again, how you got to where you are is not going to get you where you want to go. What do we need to add and start doing to create the business of our dreams?

So maybe you need to start networking. Perhaps you need to join a networking group. Maybe you need to start doing some paid advertising, like Google ad words or Facebook ads. Many people are super scared of venturing over into paid advertising, but I’m telling you that it is fantastic once you get it set up correctly.

Perhaps you need to start working on your leadership skills with your teams. Maybe you need to have regular team meetings.

So really thinking about your business in three ways, what are you going to stop doing, what are you going to keep doing, and what will you start doing? Very, very simple questions you can ask yourself. Write it down, and then commit to that for your plan for 2021.

Hey there, Newbie Pet Sitter! Are you feeling stuck or overwhelmed with starting your pet sitting business? Fret no longer, my friend. I’ve got ya covered!

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How to Get Your Pet Sitting Business Back after COVID-19

How to Get Your Pet Sitting Business Back after COVID-19

2020 was an unprecedented year for our lives and our pet sitting businesses. We watched the world close up, and our enterprises close without knowing when it will end. Thankfully, a vaccine has been developed. I am ready to ramp up to make 2021 my best year in business yet!

The number one complaint that I heard pre-Covid was, “Colleen, I just don’t have the time to work ON my business!” This complaint is the issue that holds most pet sitters back from creating lucrative pet sitting careers. They’re stuck working IN their businesses rather than ON their businesses. As terrible as 2020 has been, it has gifted all of us the time to work ON our businesses. My challenge to you is to use this time to create the company of your dreams.

STEP 1: Audit Your Standard Operating Procedures

“Organize around business functions, not people. Build systems within each business function. Let systems run the business, and people run the systems. People come and go, but the systems remain constant.”
– Michael Gerber, E-Myth Revisited

What Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) can you improve upon, streamline, or eliminate?

  • Client Prospect Phone Call
  • New Client Onboarding
  • Registration Meetings
  • Client Scheduling
  • Key Management
  • Client Communication
  • Client Payments
  • Client Surveys
  • Client Testimonials
  • Cancellation Policies
  • Severe Weather Policies
  • Referral Partnership & Strategic Alliance Relations
  • Sitter Recruiting
  • Sitter Assessment
  • Sitter Onboarding
  • Sitter Management
  • Sitter “Do Not Schedule” Requests
  • Payroll
  • Internal Communications
  • Team Meetings
  • Marketing Systems

How to Get Your Pet Sitting Business Back after COVID-19


Take some time on this step, as this will be the foundation of your business, my friends! Your ability to multiply to 10K or more all depends on the behind the scenes processes of your business. THE SYSTEM RUNS THE BUSINESS. THE PERSON RUNS THE SYSTEM.

BONUS TIPS: How to create phenomenal SOPs:

  1. Use a cloud service to create an online business hub like Google Drive.
  2. Use a screen recording software like LOOM to record screen share videos of you walking through your SOPs.
  3. Write your SOPs in a step by step format to create easy to follow instructions.
  4. Maintain your SOPs over time.

STEP 2: Get or Upgrade Your Pet Sitting Software

Implementing pet sitting software is one of the easiest ways to streamline your pet sitting business. If you have not yet invested in software, I highly recommend that you do! The peace of mind it provides you is priceless. There is a learning curve when learning any new skill or software. Now is the perfect time to take on the challenge.

If you already have a software program in your business, but you’re not happy with it, now would be the time to upgrade.

Softwares that I recommend based on happy student reviews:

  1. Time to Pet
  2. Leashtime
  3. Precise Pet Care
  4. Pet Sitter Plus

BONUS TIP: PocketSuite is an excellent software for those pet sitting business owners on a tight budget.

STEP 3: Keep in Touch With Your Current Customers

The best marketing that you can do at this moment is to keep in touch with your current customer list. If you are open for business, let them know and educate them on your COVID-19 Precaution Guidelines. Your pet-loving community may not need pet care at this exact moment, but if you stay in touch, you will be the first person they call when they do. They can also refer you to friends and family that do need pet care.

Ways to Stay in Touch With Your Pet Sitting Customers:

  1. Send a monthly newsletter with updates and filled with value
  2. A direct mail campaign
  3. An early summer booking promotion
  4. Social media posts
  5. Create video how-to’s
  6. Send gifts to your VIP clients
  7. Create video content
  8. Publish blog posts
  9. Add live chat to your website
  10. Include a pop-up to your website, letting them know you’re available during COVID.

BONUS TIP: You should continue your Stay-in-Touch Marketing Plan even after the pandemic has passed. Acquiring a new customer can cost five times more than having an existing customer book from you again. You make this happen through your Stay-in-Touch Marketing Plan.

STEP 3: Audit Your Finances

It’s essential to know your numbers! Most of the pet sitting business owners that I work with shy away from financial activities. I teach how to create a weekly financial system in order to always be on top of what money is coming in and what is going out. It’s a universal law that what you track grows!

  1. Run your Profit & Loss Statements for 2019 and 2020 to evaluate how much of a hit your business took. It will also help you to set your 2021 goals.
  2. Run your monthly revenue reports to help with your goal setting.
  3. Conduct an audit of your expenses and see what you can downgrade or eliminate.
  4. If you don’t have a weekly accounting system, create one!
  5. Open a tax account, and make weekly deposits to it, so you will never be caught with a large tax bill.
  6. Begin to compile your documents for your tax returns, statements, receipts, etc.
  7. Make sure you have all of the correct financial records for your contractors or employees.
  8. Make year-end purchases to use as tax write-offs.
  9. Verify any loan accounts, amounts still owed, payment schedule, and estimated payoff.
  10. Meet with a financial professional to ensure that you have everything in order.
  11. Consider raising your rates in 2021.

BONUS TIPS: Use financial software like Quickbooks Online or Wave Apps, and read “Profit First” by Mike Michalowicz.

STEP 4: Plan for the Upcoming Year

Yearly planning is crucial because it’s your roadmap to success. COVID-19 is not going to be around forever, so you must have a plan ready to execute to attract new, ideal clients to your business, have your current clients book from you more frequently so that you continue to multiply your business.

  1. Pick a day that you will commit to engross yourself in your planning fully.
  2. You need space to think and be creative. Break out the whiteboard and remove all distractions. Consider getting a hotel room. If you do this at home, make sure to send everyone away!
  3. Plan with someone who knows your business. If you are a one-person show, grab a friend or a peer to plan with. If you have an assistant, have them with you for this process if you can—even if it’s just over Zoom!
  4. Brainstorm your opportunities and big dreams- Say you could wave a magic wand, and just like that, no matter what you journeyed out to do in your business, you couldn’t fail. What projects and new experiences would you say yes to? What would you do if you couldn’t fail? What would a wildly successful year look like for you?
  5. Decide on your non-negotiables- One thing that is just as important as dreaming up your significant opportunities is to look at your non-negotiables: What are you NOT willing to do or experience to get to your wildly successful year? What are the things you’ve done or experienced that you’re done with? What are the things you no longer want to experience again? In the future, when you need to decide on how you spend your time or what you’ll do, what are your non-negotiables?
    • I will no longer work nights or weekends.
    • I will no longer do any of the pet sitting.
    • I will no longer accept non-ideal clients.
    • I will no longer manage the office.
    • I will no longer hire non-ideal pet sitters.
    • I refuse to start something and not finish it. That’s something that is no longer happening in my business!
  6. Declare how much money you want to make in 2021. Be specific!
  7. Review what did work in 2019 and 2020.
  8. Design your marketing plan-How will you get new, ideal clients and have your current clients book from you more frequently?
  9. Add your income-generating activities to your calendar.
  10. Decide how you will need to show up in 2021 to reach your goals.-“If I’m able to pull this off, to create the most wildly successful year, how do I need to think? What thoughts will keep me moving forward? Who do I need to be?

If you’re ready to make 2021 your most incredible year in business yet, I invite you to schedule a complimentary Strategy Session with me.

Go to www.MeetWithColleen.com to schedule your 10K Month Pet Sitting Blueprint Strategy Session to learn how to scale your business through Sales, Systems, and Support.

If you have any questions, please feel free to shoot me a message and www.MessageColleen.com

I can’t wait to talk with you!

P.S. If you’re not already a member of our free Facebook Community, where people turn their passion for pets into paychecks, go to www.PetNannyCoachCommunity.com.

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How to Track the Effectiveness of Paid Advertising for Your Pet Sitting Business

How to Track the Effectiveness of Paid Advertising for Your Pet Sitting Business

About 15 years ago, I spent around $450 or more per month on Google Adwords advertising for my pet sitting business without having a single clue if all that money was even bringing me one client per month. That is not a smart marketing strategy, and I wasted a ton of money.

You need to track the effectiveness of your paid advertising

With paid advertising, you have to get into the mindset of knowing that you need to track its effectiveness. If you find the advertising working, you’re going to put the same amount of money or more into that advertising. Otherwise, you’re not going to invest in that ad again. That’s the basics of it.

I learned this a long time ago from Dan Kennedy, one of the world’s marketing gurus. He’s got these fantastic books, the BS Guides To Grassroot Marketing, and The No BS Guide to Networking, and a whole list of them. They’re short, small, and easy to read.

If you don’t have any money to invest in yourself, or into a business coach, or a program, start here.

How to Track the Effectiveness of Paid Advertising for Your Pet Sitting Business

 

Understand whether the money you invest is returning to you

You need to have a direct response marketing to understand where every dollar you are putting out for your business is coming back to you.

For example:

Let’s say I run a Facebook ad, and I say, “Oh, I have this great pet sitting business.”

Then someone says, “Oh, that pet sitting business looks great. Let me click on this link.”

I’m just sending them to my home page. There is no way for me to know if they saw my ad on Facebook if they came to my home page and became clients. I’m just sending traffic to my website, having no clue if it’s converting or not.

Create a specific Call To Action for each ad

You need to understand I’m going to create this ad, and I’m going to make a specific call to action for this Facebook marketing campaign.

Let’s say, hey, Facebook audience that I’m targeting. I’m going to give you $25 off your first service order.

They click the link and go to a specific landing page. Then we’re going to see how many people got to the landing page and how many people gave me their first name and email to get the coupon.

Then you’re going to track the effectiveness. The potential customers gave me their first name and email address. How many of those people signed up to become a customer?

This is how you track the effectiveness of paid advertising.

Send the paid traffic to a specific URL created for the offer

It is the same thing for print advertising.

You don’t just want to say, Hey, come check out Pet Nanny, this excellent pet sitting business.”

You need to send them an offer. Go to this specific URL, petnannycoach.com.

If I’m doing print advertising in a specific magazine, I’ll know if somebody opens the magazine app and says, “Okay, I’ll go get that coupon.”

They clicked on the coupon and gave me their first name and email. They enter the marketing sequence and become a customer.

I can see then that the advertising is worth it.

Track your paid advertising’s effectiveness and conversions

How many people saw your ad and clicked on it?

How many people hit the landing page and gave you their first name and email address?

Out of that amount of people, how many people became customers, and then you tweak from there?

A lot of people see my ad, and no one’s clicking on it. Maybe try a new ad, a new ad image.

They’re getting to the sales page, but they’re not giving me their first name and email address. That means the offer and the page copy is not going to be great. Maybe change some of the wording, change the color of the submit button.

They’re getting into the sales sequence, but they’re not becoming customers. What do I need to change?

That’s how you become good at marketing and know every dollar you spend is coming back to you in the form of a customer. Otherwise, you’re just flushing money down the toilet, and we don’t want that.

Howdy, Pet Lover! Are you struggling with attracting new clients to your pet sitting business? Would you like to have a consistent pipeline of new clients coming to your business? Well, wait no longer, my friend. Grab my FREE report, 125 Ways To Get More Pet Sitting Clients. This resource is 100% FREE and is my gift to you. Enjoy!
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