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CATHRYN LAVERY

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    Among my entrepreneur friends I’ve been the designated ‘namer’ of new products/businesses/mastermind groups… you name it. They’ve come to me for help. This is how they reel me in: Then it goes something like this: Today I’m going to lay out the EXACT process I used to come up with the names and even how to […]

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    I’ve been living in the U.S. for four years, the last big election I didn’t pay much attention to as I hadn’t been living here long. However, this time, around, from a marketing point-of-view I’ve been fascinated by the whole thing. Don’t worry if you don’t follow politics, this isn’t about that. I’m not here […]

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    I recently visited a friend who was setting up their home office and I was giving them some recommendations of what they needed to get setup right away. Between layout, apps, chrome extensions, online services – I’ve tried everything (I nerd-out on this stuff) and have found the diamonds in the rough. Before we get to […]

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    Creating systems and processes are the key to freedom in both life and business … yikes, it sounds bloody boring doesn’t it? That’s what I thought until I realized what a lifesaver they are. Systems are the difference between having a successful business you work on, and having created a job for yourself that you […]

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    Have you ever tried to create something and it didn’t seem to work? A book? An App? A Course? A Physical product? You released it to the world, and it just didn’t sell. You figured it was because your idea wasn’t very good after all. Today I’m going to share with you how to validate […]

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    A few years ago the idea of selling a product before it existed would have seemed like a pipedream or a scam to me. Why would someone buy something that didn’t exist? (My dad asked me that the first time I mentioned pre-selling a product) However when if you look around you’ll start recognizing that […]

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    In an ever increasing digital world, despite the advance in technologies, there seems to be a movement back toward the world of physical products. It could be the Amazon opportunities available now, the globalization that makes importing from overseas easy or simply just the love of the tangible goods. The difference between the world of […]

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    Your crowdfunding campaign page is essentially the website of your project, it’s the sales page you use to convert visitors into backers. Whether you go with Kickstarter or Indiegogo, both platforms give you freedom to brand your page as you like – take advantage! As such it should be crafted with the same care you […]

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    “Life begins at the end of your comfort zone” – Neale Donald Walsch Over the past few years since I’ve left Architecture and exchanged it for Entrepreneurship, many people have asked me what my “secret” was. If I had to drill it down to one thing it would be simply this, “I made myself uncomfortable”. […]

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    Note from Cathryn: I invited Miguel to the blog to write the first ever guest post to share his answer to a simple question… “How do you launch a successful product business on Amazon as a newbie?” It’s not an easy question, I have even struggled with how to do it in the past. However […]

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    Meeting randomers from the internet can be either scary or fun. In the case of conferences like SumoCon in Austin a couple of weeks ago it was very fun. What is SumoCon? It’s a new conference by the guys over at Appsumo to focus on your business. Considering I’ve been following, and buying from them […]

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    “There are moments when life offers you an opportunity. Those moments are rare, and you’re often unprepared for them. But they are the times that offer the chance to grow, fail, change, and thrive. This is one of those moments.” – Shopify

    My Journey with Shopify

    Shopify has played a huge role in my journey from a 9-5’er to now. In 2012 I used the e-commerce platform to launch Calm The Ham not realizing at the time that I was diving into the world of entrepreneurship. Not too long after I launched the store in 2012 I learned about the Build a Business competition and entered as a contestant.

    Back then it would have been the 2nd year of the contest and suffice to say I didn’t even come close to winning. However, as a bystander I loved seeing the contest unfold, between the mentorship videos and the competition it was amazing even back then.

    That store was eventually my vehicle to freedom and allowed me to leave my full-time job in 2014.

    The next time the Build a Business contest came into my consciousness was in 2015 when they announced the prize of spending five days on Necker Island with Richard Branson,


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    The U.S (and the world) just went through the most surprising and reality-TV seeming presidential campaign of all time in 2016. As someone who volunteered on a presidential campaign during this cycle, I loved getting a glimpse of things from the inside and learned a lot about successful marketing in the process.

    You can check out my earlier post during the presidential primaries where I reviewed the marketing strategies of several candidates.

    Don’t worry, this is not the 10273628 political post examining what happened and why – It’s all about the Marketing!

    Today I’m going to share 5 things about how to run your Product Launch/Crowdfunding campaign like you would a successful political campaign so that you win.

    1. GROUND GAME IS KEY!

    A great politician has a ground game for months and months before anyone is even able to cast their vote. They are educating the voters on themselves, their policies and how they would govern to have these supporters turn up at the polls.

    For you, this means growing an email list of targeted people interested in your product or service.


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    Welcome to another year! This post marks my 3rd year for writing an annual review. Often we get so busy pushing ourselves up the mountain, always looking ahead that we don’t stop to look behind us, seeing how far we’ve come. This annual review process forces me to stop, reflect and be grateful for the year, while choosing how best to move forward into a new year.

    Disclaimer: I write reviews mainly for myself to learn from, to show people what’s possible in a year and also to hopefully help people learn from my mistakes.

    Being able to look back on my 2015 review article is really fun and reminds me how far I’ve come in only a year. If you haven’t, you should write your own Year in Review article. (If you do, post it in the comment section so everyone else can read it.)

    For this review I’ll cover:


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    Today I want to share the story of Elizabeth, a student from my course From Zero to Funded.

    Elizabeth reached out to me last year, and this was her email:

    littlenomad-email

    As you can see here she’s an action-taker, I love it and it’s why I’ve been so excited to see how far she’s come. Today I want to share her story from when she went from a full-time working mom to an entrepreneur with a physical product business who also recently appeared on Shark Tank!

    Her Idea:

    Elizabeth was a style conscious young mom with a keen eye for design, so when she had her baby and was shopping for playmats the only thing around were “circus looking things that looked really ugly in my living room”. These ugly playmats had to be put away before company came over – not ideal.

    So what if there was a better solution?

    That’s when she came up with the idea to create beautifully illustrated playmats that would create the atmosphere of a nice rug that you wouldn’t need to put away every time you had guests over.


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    Have you ever wished you could go back to high school knowing everything you do now? Well I kinda got to do that…

    Recently I was invited back to give a talk at my old high school and share my journey since I left in 2005. The purpose was to impart any “wisdom” I had for some of the older students during Friday assembly.

    *Cue the awkward high school picture*

    (I’m not sure what was more tragic, my hair, the hairband or those eyebrows…)

    I asked on Facebook what people wished they had known back when they were between 16 – 18 years old. I got some great responses from people…

    There were a bunch of awesome responses, you can see the whole post here.

    3 Myths I believed at School:

    Myth: You have to know what you want to do for the rest of your life

    Truth: Many of the jobs that exist now didn’t exist 10 years ago. Same as many jobs that exist now won’t exist in 10 years.


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    In the past 18 months, BestSelf Co has gone from a 2 person operation of myself and Allen, to a full team of people. In fact, we just celebrated our third team member being with us for over a year.

    Between contractors, part-time and full-time people, we have around 16 people who play some role in the team, between customer support, marketing, development, and design.

    A shot from our October team retreat to Key West

    … Getting there has not been easy.

    In this post I’ll cover:

    1. How NOT to hire someone
    2. How to define a job role
    3. How to create an automated application process that only brings qualified candidates (and saves you tons of time and energy)
    4. The system we used for hiring that finally worked!
    5. The tools we use that make boring paperwork easy

    1. How NOT to Hire Someone

    We hired our first key person in March of 2016, and the second shortly after.

    At the time we were two months into running our online store after having completed our Kickstarter campaign and fulfillment.


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