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Good Idea? Bad Idea? You Tell Me

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There’s a problem with online business — and I’d like to help solve it.

Online business can be lonely — and confusing.

It’s tough to find people to talk to who understand what you’re trying to accomplish.

When I first started Big Brand System, I got used to seeing people’s eyes glaze over when I explained my business is online. No one I knew understood anything about how online businesses worked.

So I did something about it: I joined mastermind/group coaching programs where I could share what I was working on and get feedback and support from people who “got me” (and my business).

It made all the difference in the world! And now I’d like to offer this to you.

UPDATE: I love watching how business ideas evolve! This one turned into my community for online business builders — the BIG League. Learn more here

Monthly Campfire Sessions from Big Brand System

If I decide to move ahead with them, these monthly sessions would be a way to get targeted help for your online business without a long-term coaching commitment.

Monthly Campfire Sessions:

  • Would be a way get feedback on your website, your business idea, your funnel setup, your launch plans … anything you need help with
  • Would offer eight laser-coaching spots, available on a first-come first served basis
  • Would allow you to submit your question in advance and get 15 minutes of live focused coaching — plus 1 hour and 45 minutes to learn from others’ questions and coaching
  • Would cost just $60 per coaching spot or $29 for an “observer” seat (watch the session but don’t participate)
  • Would not be an ongoing commitment — you would sign up only when you need one
  • Would be recorded and all paid attendees would get access to the session recording to re-watch whenever they want

This would be a way to get targeted help on “that thing” you’re stuck on — whether it’s figuring out how to promote your new product, brainstorming your tagline, deciding on an opt-in incentive, getting feedback on your pricing structure, or something else.

Good idea? Bad idea?

I have noticed that people need a place to get their questions answered — without having to commit to a long-term coaching relationship. I’m hoping Monthly Campfire sessions will be that place.

What do you think? I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments.

If you don’t have time to leave a comment, just “vote” by responding to the question below.

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Thoughts? Questions? Suggestions?

I’m all ears. Cruise on down to the comments and let me know what you think.

Pamela Wilson

Pamela Wilson

Pamela Wilson is an online educator, author, keynote speaker, and the founder of BIG Brand System. Read reviews of the tools used to run this site and business.

Pamela Wilson

I want to help you take the next step. Pick your free workshop topic and let’s do this!

23 thoughts on “Good Idea? Bad Idea? You Tell Me”

  1. I think it’s a great idea, and if I was not already paying for something similar, I would definitely consider it.

  2. Hi Pamela
    Absolutely a great idea. Not just online business is lonely. Running any business is lonely. Always in the need of objective and knowledgeable feedback.

    I spend so much time second-guessing my decisions, it would be great to have someone bounce back other ideas.

  3. I like the idea so much I might copy it myself. First, of course, I would need to learn the tricks of the trade. If you’re open to that, I would definitely pay for an observer seat.

    One thing that wasn’t clear: Are you envisaging one-off sessions or a subscription and, if so, how long for.

    • That is a great question, Abdur! These are one-off sessions: you can sign up whenever you need one. I’m going to add that detail to the post — thank you.

  4. Hi Pamela,

    I would love to have support in my business! In fact, I clicked around your coaching program, wishing it could be for me.

    But I’m always cautious about the type and depth of advice I can get in a 15 minute session. If my question was basic and tactical, it would work. For example, would a 3 or 5 email autoresponder be better? What would be the first thing I could do to make my website more user-friendly? Those questions could be covered in 15 minutes.

    But for larger, strategic questions, questions that are particular to the person’s scenario, or questions that involve the person’s personality–those questions would be hard to cover in 15 minutes (and those questions are often what need answering). So I wonder if it would be hard to get useful information in 15 minutes.

    I have often tried to figure out how to get useful coaching. Private coaching is expensive and out of many people’s reach (including mine). And although your idea is fabulous, I have always been skeptical about the effectiveness of group coaching.

    You have far more experience with coaching than I do so my bet is that you have already figured out this issue. I’m just giving you feedback about one of the ideas that might float through people’s heads. 🙂

    Thank you!
    Julia

    • You’re absolutely correct, Julia: this isn’t a solution if you need long-term strategy help. It’s a way to get feedback on one sticky question on an as-needed basis.

      It’s a way to access my 30+ years of experience one question at a time. 🙂

      I have had a universally positive experience of group coaching when it’s well run. As long as each person gets time in the spotlight, group coaching can be very effective. I’ve found that attendees benefit tremendously from hearing others’ questions and the coaching they receive.

      Thank you for your feedback: it helps to set the direction of this idea!

  5. Hi Pamela! I actually think it’s a fabulous idea, and given where I’m at in my development, I know I wouldn’t attend regularly. That said, if topics or areas of focus were announced ahead of time, I might participate periodically, depending on cost. Hope that helps.

  6. Hmmmm…. Not sure I would want to just observe random questions – but it would definitely feel useful to observe a session that had a THEME, so I would be sure to hear something that was relevant.

    Can’t think of a situation where I had one question that I knew would just take 15 minutes to answer. Wouldn’t want to pay $60 if it ended up taking 2 minutes to answer, and if 15 minutes wasn’t enough for a real answer, that might feel like a wasted $60.

    • Great feedback: thanks, Jocelyn!

      If I move ahead with this, I’ll suggest some questions that could be answered. 15 minutes is enough time to review a Home, About, or Sales page. My webinar software allows me to share my screen, so I can show a site while we talk about it. It’s enough time to get feedback on the idea behind a planned opt-in incentive. It’s enough time to talk about an overall content strategy for a new site.

      I’ll be sure to add options to the page where I collect questions before the session.

      These types of questions typically involve some back and forth and I would need to ask for more details, so questions don’t typically take 2 minutes to answer.

      One of these reasons I feel optimistic this will work is that I’m just wrapping up a subscription-based group coaching program that I offered to about 20 people in the Big Brand System audience. I’m excited to potentially put the concept in front of a larger group of people but make it “as-needed” so it’s a bit more flexible.

  7. Finally, I can claim my timing is good. I’m developing sales pages for a new group of data science educators and would appreciate your feedback on them as they come up and a monthly pace is about right for them.

    My vote is that I’m in.

  8. Pamela, as you know, we have been talking about your coaching service. Monthly Campside sessions have a different objective and approach that don’t conflict with or exclude the more intensive coaching relationship. So count me in for the Monthly Campside “active participation” (I have a number of potential questions to submit for laser treatment). As for your development of format and administration, I agree with a couple of other comments that some advance scope focus for each session would tie in the range of group interest each time and would assist potential attendees in deciding which sessions apply best to their situation at the time (ie tune-in or tune-out). You say that you can share your screen with viewers, but can we share our screen (eg a website page under development) as well?

    • Great to know, Robert: Thanks for taking the time to comment.

      And for these sessions, I won’t pre-plan topics for them: I want them to be a place where people can get their questions answered — whatever they are. (OK, I’m hoping they don’t show up with questions about bookkeeping or corporate structure … but you know what I mean!)

      If it’s helpful for your planning, I do have small-group education sessions planned for the second half of 2017 — on a wide variety of online business topics.

      More on that soon! In the meantime, I want to give people a place to get their questions answered.

  9. How about a different version of it, individual coaching by email? I like the idea you introduced but I think 15 minutes is too limited on terms of time and focus.

    • Hello June! I offer email coaching only to my private Momentum Coaching clients. It’s a big way I can add value to that package because they get weekly feedback from me. 🙂

  10. I think your idea is brilliant. My coach does something similar – twice a month she holds “office hours” where each participant get 10 – 15 minutes of laser coaching. We all learn from each other because some of our challenges are similar.
    I think we are moving towards more community-building and membership sites versus online courses and classes. There is something to be said about the ability to connect with others and have the opportunity to get one-to-one guidance from experts.

    • I’m so glad to hear you say this, Sonja! And I’m feeling the same thing — that building real (and useful) community connection is the next big wave that’s coming on the web.

      It’s a topic I’ve been asked to speak about, actually, so I’ve been giving it a lot of thought lately.

      The idea that we should all sit at the feet of the gurus and listen without participating is just not very attractive anymore.

      The response so far has been overwhelmingly positive so watch this space — this idea is going to happen sooner rather than later!

  11. As others have mentioned, I like the approach of knowing in advance (at least a few days) what topics are scheduled to be discussed so that I could plan to be an observer. I can definitely salso see great merit in having 15 minutes of focused guidance on a business topic about which I may need clarification or an explanation and having the opportunity to clarify my needs in the context of my business prior to the session. I’m also glad that the session would be recorded and access to the replay would be made available. I’m in, Pamela!

    • Hurray! That’s great to know, Ellen. Thanks for taking the time to share your feedback.

  12. Well, I am a woman who always has oh so many questions and would love to gather around the campfire with you. My concern is the time–if it is in the morning or during the middle of the day, I am locked into teaching with little flexibility. If it is mid to late afternoon, I will happily join!

    • This has had an overwhelmingly positive response, Grace, so I’m planning to move ahead with the idea! Stay tuned for details. 🙂

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