It’s really true…
there are those things…
I simply cannot do.
So I try all day, hunched over my melting laptop, with the taunting echoes of children playing carelessly drifting in through my makeshift office window facing Elm Street … code this, embed that, integrate systems and platforms to make it all work. When it’s all over, and the street is silent, and I understand that I just can’t make it work, I retreat to the comfort of a deep night’s sleep.
But sleep won’t come easily.
Lost in the techmares of the day’s failures, I toss and turn. The gremlins called “can’t” tug at my blankets and a deep chill arrests me. Startled and dismayed, I find my fingers searching in the dark to turn on a dim light by my bed as I reach for that frightening little laptop, once again.
“Maybe if I try one more thing,” I think.
But my mind won’t stop, and I try to work my way out of the techmare that mocks me without mercy.
In time, I give in to exhaustion, hit the shut down prompt and turn off the light.
Haunted by the day’s failures, and the nagging knowledge that I must accomplish that which I can’t… I wonder if my techmare will return.
Have you ever lived through nights like that?
What solutions have you discovered to get past technical issues that hold you back from making your online blog or business move forward?
Here’s some of the solutions I’ve learned to turn to, so I can get back on track with my business… and return to a good night’s sleep, even on days when I sheepishly submit to “can’t”.
Hire An Expert
This is the most obvious thing to do, and I’ve done it many times.
Fiverr, Odesk and Elance all come to mind, but there are others, too.
I have to say, I’ve had a really good experience with Fiverr especially. You just have to be sure to hire someone with an excellent rating, and someone who’s done a lot of Fiverr gigs over a fairly long period of time (at least a year).
I usually just search a category I need help with, and start searching through the many people who offer the services I need.
So if I need a banner, for instance, I’d simply search “banners” and look through all the vendors who create banners for me. I pick someone who looks good, then hire them for the gig.
Over time, I build up a list of people I work with on a fairly regular basis, so I don’t always have to go through the search process. I just swivel my rolodex, and call on a trusted gig vendor through the Fiverr platform.
You could also hire someone you know from your online network of folks. Who do you know that can fix your WordPress problem, or create an ebook for you? Why not call on them?
Barter Away Your Techmares
Bartering your services for some technical assistance is another great way to put the techmares to rest.
I just mentioned hiring someone from within your circle of contacts, your online network of friends and associates.
Well, an alternative to hiring them to do some technical work for you, is to offer them a barter situation.
Here’s an example of the type of barter arrangement I’ve done in the past:
Hey Carrie [fake name, of course], you look pretty busy these days. That’s good! But you might be needing a little help. Actually, I do too, and I know you could help me because you’re so great at creating landing pages. I need a squeeze page for my free ebook offer, and I’m wondering if you could put one together for me. If you would create a squeeze page for me, I’d be happy to write a blog post of 1000 to 1500 words for you… not a guest post, just a post in your voice that you can put your name on and use any way you’d like. How about it, Carrie? PS: Don’t be shy about saying ‘no’… I understand if you can’t do it at this time.
This is what you call a win-win. No money gets exchanged, but I get my squeeze page and “Carrie” gets a good quality blog post. It works because Carrie is much better at creating landing pages, and I’m much better at writing.
Win-Win, don’t you think?
My Secret Weapon
I’ve met so few people who make good use of a company’s “support desk” that I often tell my clients that it’s my “secret weapon.
Of course, it’s no secret to anyone that you can ask for technical assistance via support desks, but very few people I know really use this method consistently or methodically.
Do you have an autoresponder? A video upload service? How about a hosting service for your blog?
Just about any product, system or service that you ever buy into at any level at all will offer free technical support.
Before hiring anybody to handle technical issues you might be having, think of a service that’s involved. Then, very thoroughly and completely document your issue and submit it to their support desk.
Attach supporting screen captures to help them identify your problem. Give them access to your site so they can get into your back office and figure out your problem.
Keep copies of all your support questions and answers on separate documents on your desktop so you can readily refer to them as needed. I use Evernote (free version), so I don’t even have to create desktop documents, and so I can more easily locate my notes on a wide variety of technical issues.
You’d be amazed at the high quality of very professional technical assistance you can get at absolutely no cost if you do this the right way, and that includes being courteous and giving thanks for good advice.
You could even consider offering to do testimonials for companies that give you great, consistent technical assistance in this way. It only furthers the working relationship between you and some really top notch techies.
My Personal Assistant
For quick fixes, I find that hiring a good mentor or coach is worth its weight in gold. Find someone who will work with you on an “as-needed” basis to resolve issues that would otherwise bog you down and cause you techmares at night.
It’s not easy to find people like this because coaching is so often cost prohibitive. But I don’t think I’ve ever come across a successful online entrepreneur who doesn’t have good coaching and technical assistance at the heart of their business model.
I offer assistance on many levels through the “Whirlwind Success VIP Club” that I operate with my wife, Donna.
One of the cornerstones of our VIP Club is to help people get past technical issues on an immediate, individual basis. So, if you can’t get your videos embedded on a sales page, for instance, you just catch us on our “Hotline” and ask for help. We talk you through your problem via Skype, email or even telephone so you can keep moving forward in building your business.
It’s pretty cool and members are certainly loving it.
So, what are your Halloween horror stories?
Tell me about your own miserable little techmares.
Do they keep you up at night?
Do you have a place to turn when you confront those things that you just “can’t” solve on your own?
Do you have techmare cures of your own that I didn’t mention in this article?
Or is all well for you on Elm Street?
I’d love to read your comments below. Please share this article on your social sites, too.