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Guru Interview Of The Month -- Cathy Wagner

By Lawrence Doro
Posted Friday, December 24, 2004

[Lawrence] Cathy, could you briefly describe some of your online business operations and products/services?

[Cathy] Sure, I am a one woman operation working out of my home. My site, ( is designed to help anyone build an online business with straight forward information, tips and recommendations.

In addition to writing articles and providing tested recommendations, I am also available to all members (free and paid) for questions, advice and live interactive marketing discussions. I really like to talk to members and it feels great when I can help others by telling them how I overcame an obstacle that they are now facing.

My free membership is designed for beginners who really need to learn the basics of promoting their offer (whatever it is) online. It includes recommendations for the most effective free advertising sites, the live discussions and support I mentioned, plus my ebook which explains what you need to start an internet business and gives a comprehensive overview of the most common forms of free online advertising and how to get the most out of them.

My paid membership is for those who have been around for a while and are looking for new ways to get their offer to more people. I have compiled over 50 recommendations for a wide variety of free and low cost tools, tips and services that range from handy pc and web design tools to low cost, quality advertising sites and free information on advanced marketing strategies.

The low cost of membership, the diversity of my recommendations, and the interactive aspects of my site are what makes it different from other marketing information sites I have seen, and believe me, I have seen a lot!

[Lawrence] What made you decide to start a business? What was your inspiration or motivation?

[Cathy] My husband is a contractor and we relied solely on his income when our two children were first born, so I could stay home to care for them.

While it is good money, it is not always steady and it became quite clear that we needed another stream of income to carry us through lean times. Because it was important to us that I stay home with the kids, we built my pc piece by piece and I started with my first online business opportunity a little over 2 years ago.

[Lawrence] What have been your major challenges or obstacles so far? How did you overcome them?

[Cathy] One of the biggest challenges I have faced was my lack of experience when I started. My first business opportunity made it sound so easy, but everywhere I went for information wanted so much money or gave poor quality information.

I overcame this by doing my own research and tracking my results. I continue to do research today, I am always looking for new and better ways to promote ONE STOP.

Another challenge was being totally isolated from others in this field. Until about a year ago, I did not have contact with any colleagues. This didn't seem like a big deal at the time, but now that I interact with them regularly, I find them to be an inspiration; I have learned a lot and I have really been able to help others.

I overcame this when I was introduced to what has become my favorite chat room. If you have ever been to a Yahoo business chatroom, you would appreciate the beauty of Money Chatter. This is a place where friendly internet marketers go to talk shop. The value of being able to bounce ideas off of colleagues, or get help with problems is enormous. For me, it has been a great blessing.

[Lawrence] What specific types of online marketing tools are you using successfully?

[Cathy] I use all of the methods and recommendations at ONE STOP, but right now, my favorite marketing tool is free publicity. The power of this is absolutely phenominal. I write articles or contribute to discussion groups and forums and I gain a steady stream of members from these sources. The beauty of using these types of mediums is that I can speak directly to the people who are interested in and even really need my services.

[Lawrence] Have you always envisioned yourself doing what you are doing now? What did you "want to be when you grew up"?

[Cathy] As a kid, I always assumed I would be a business person or entrepeneur. Definitely the one in the office with my own secretary. :)

As an adult I have had a wide range of jobs including movie theatre projectionist, bartender, massage therapist and I used to sell 19th century stamps and envelopes to collectors. I have always like to talk to and help people wherever I can.

[Lawrence] What is your least favorite part of running your own business? Your favorite part?

[Cathy] Site work is my least favorite aspect. I am not quite hopeless at it, but it intimidates me and I am often afraid of making mistakes. I could never have designed my site myself, I am very thankful to DMC for the great job she did with it; all I have to do is updates or create similar pages for new articles and services, but I just don't like it. I don't let that stop me though, I update the site just about every week. :)

My favorite part is promotion. I love to blast my ad or article across the internet! And when people click...YES!

Of course, I also love to talk with members and other internet business people. It is my idea of fun!

[Lawrence] What important advice or tips would you give to a new online business owner?

[Cathy] Do and learn as much as you can for free! Don't let anyone tell you that you have to spend a lot of money if you are "serious."

The first thing you need to do is, figure out what you are supposed to do. :) If you begin by spending money before you have done some homework, you will lose your money and become frustrated.

Luckily, there is a wealth of free information about all aspects of having an internet business available today and you can use free advertising to perfect your ad writing skills before you buy ad space. Use all the free resources you can, and do not pay for advertising until you are confident that your ad will bring results through testing it first.

About the Author
Lawrence Doro searches the web and talks to experts. Visit his highly recommended resource at: (


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