Mark McGuinness is many things in one – he is competent, creative, caring and COOL! Mark has been a friend for years and I have learned a lot from him over the years. So when Mark reached out to see if I wanted to be an affiliate for the new course he is launching, I didn’t hesitate for a second. It’s a course for creative people. It’s a course for entrepreneurs. It’s a course for creative entrepreneurs. It’s all online. I have gone through the course myself and have benefited immensely and hope you will do too.
The course is not open to new students yet but as part of the promotion, Mark has released a brilliant eBook (for FREE) called “Freedom, Money, Time and the key to Creative Success” (note: size of the file is 4.6MB)
I had an opportunity to talk to Mark about the eBook and here is the interview:
RS: What is the ebook about and why did you write it?
MM: It’s about the challenge of finding the right combination of freedom, money and time in life, through the career choices you make and the creativity and commitment you bring to them.
It’s based on my own unconventional carer journey, as a poet and creative coach. Like many independent-minded creative people, I didn’t want a ‘proper’ job so I turned to freelancing as a way to preserve my independence. But because I was resistant to the corporate image I associated with ‘business’, I didn’t learn enough about the business side of things to make it really satisfying and sustainable.
Eventually, I learned about a different approach to entrepreneurship that meant I started looking at the business itself as a creative project – which has worked out much better.
The ebook isn’t just my story – I draw out the lessons I learned the hard way, and offer some practical tips on creating a rewarding business that doesn’t burn you out.
RS: You talk about ‘creative entrepreneurship’ in the ebook – but surely all entrepreneurs are creative?
MM: They are indeed! But I’m writing about a very specific type of entrepreneurship – small, agile businesses that are created without venture capital, payroll, big offices – or even the ambition to grow big, in terms of headcount. They rely on hard work, creative talent, and the internet. So you end up with a company that looks more like 37signals than Microsoft.
Plus I’m writing for people who may tend to think of themselves as ‘creatives’ first and ‘entrepreneurs’ second (if at all). I want to show them that even if they don’t consider themselves ‘business’ types, they can create an original and profitable business.
RS: You also claim that artists and creatives can make good entrepreneurs – what makes you say that?
MM: The last few decades have seen the emergence of the creative economy as a global phenomenon – particularly in rich countries where labour costs make it harder and harder for them to compete with emerging economies for manufacturing and even ‘white collar’ work. Creativity is now a major source of competitive advantage – which means there’s a big opportunity for artists and creatives who are prepared to learn some fundamental business skills.
RS: The ebook talks a lot about internet marketing – does this approach to entrepreneurship only apply to web-based businesses selling digital products, or could it apply to any business?
MM: It can apply to just about any small business, whether selling physical or digital products, or services. I started off blogging to generate leads for my consulting business. More recently I’ve moved into e-learning and do a lot of my coaching work online, via webcam.
And I have an upcoming interview with John T. Unger, an artist who makes sculptures out of recycled propane boilers. Art doesn’t get much more industrial than John’s work! He makes these big heavy metal firebowls – yet the internet allows him to find customers and ship them all over the world.
RS: You also have an in-depth training program that accompanies the ebook – could you say a little about that?
MM: The Creative Entrepreneur Roadmap is an in-depth guide to creating a profitable and enjoyable business, leveraging your own talents, the internet and partnering strategies.
I created it with my friends an former partners Brian Clark, Tony Clark and Sonia Simone. (The course also features contributions from Jeff Walker, Jon Morrow and Rich Schefren.)
It’s the business resource we wish we’d had when we started out – we want to help people get the benefit of our mistakes, as well as our successes. To judge from the rave reviews from previous students, we got pretty close to our ambition.
I’ll be opening the course up to a new group of students very shortly – and there are some more free educational resources for release before then. So your readers can download the free eBook to get a sneak preview of the quality of education they will receive when the course opens.
Here is the link:
“Freedom, Money, Time and the key to Creative Success” (note: size of the file is 4.6MB)