The customer path is like a funnel but I guess less more flexible and fluid. I have NO funnels, I don’t like the term and I lack the straight line thinking to create them no matter how much I’d LOVE to. But what I do have, 100%, is a path for my peeps. I know where I want them to go. I know what I want them to do. Of course it’s up to them to PICK that path or pick another but for me the customer path is knowing:
How visitors to my website will become subscribers to my email list.
How email subscribers will become customers.
How my customers will be lead to more offers and served to the best of my abilities.
That is my customer path. They come in not knowing me and they eventually and hopefully get to the point down the path where they are customers, loyal customers and potential even super fans.
The Tech Stack:
The tech stack is the technology you use to run your business. I’ll give it to you straight – this can get complicated and messy. It can feel overwhelming and it can just place SUCK and/or SUCK YOUR TIME. I consider the setup of the stack the price you pay for having the amazingly incredible privaledge to live a laptop lifestyle! Here’s my stack currently:
WordPress – Free, Open Source – Install from Hosting
Thrive Membership – Thrive Architect Theme, Thrive Optimize for split testing & Thrive Leads for forms – $233/year
Memberoni Theme from Member Site Academy – For courses, membership & download pages – $67/month for membership. Must join to get theme and have updates. Can cancel and theme will still work you just won’t get the updates.
Amember – For my Shopping Cart, Membership Site, Affiliate Program and some customer and affiliate emails. I use SendGrid connected to Amember to make sure the emails get through safely. Highly, highly recommend THIS COURSE if you want to use Amember because it’s not user-friendly to just pickup and use but the course walks you through it perfectly.
Aweber – Using for my subscriber emails but I will be shortly moving to Active Campaign to manage ALL emails (customer, subscriber and affiliate).
Vimeo – $108/yr or $13/month. Hosts my videos and plays them for easy links. Really easy way to get them onto my website for courses while keeping them protected. More professional than YouTube and easier than Amazon s3.
Yes this looks complicated and possibly overwhelming but remember I did NOT get here overnight!
I LOVE to teach people how to start simply and build from there.
Today at 1pm ET I will be hosting a bonus discussion meeting for my signature MEconomy course. I wasn’t going to do a meeting this week because it was March break (I guess it still is) but with all going on right now in the world I did not want to break from providing the support I know people NEED right now!
You could have a spouse who’s job is really teetering or cut off for the moment. You could have been working a job with a gig on the side but now you’re thinking it’s time to up the intensity and turn that side hustle into your main gig. You could be in business right now, doing good, but want to convert the skills you have into more leverage through group coaching offers or ebooks or courses.
THAT is what MEconomy is for! I’d love to help you!
I spent years looking to solve ALL my problems with money.
I thought things like:
“When I make enough money I’ll stop having debt.” “When I make enough money I’ll afford to go on trips.” “When I make enough money I’ll be able to buy a home.” “When I make enough money I’ll be happy.”
So I sacrificed the immediate joys of life for the pursuit of MONEY in the moment.
I became obsessed, thinking my obsession would get me results but all it got me was a lot less time to enjoy life and a lot more time feeling like I was failing!
What was failing was my money-skills and they were mostly non-existent.
I got into my first major debt a few years after my son was born. I was working to start a new business and I quickly piled up $10,000 in business expenses.
A few years after that I got into debt again, $30k, all in search of business success. And again. And again.
Honestly I’ve lost count of the amount of times I’ve racked up debt, gotten bailed out (by my parents, a consolidation loan or a windfall).
The last and final time was in the summer of 2018. That was the final consolidation loan I’d taken. It’s now been one and a half years of living on what I make and that’s awesome BUT, I have more work to do.
Here’s the money journey I’m on… I write this as I suspect I’m not the only one and maybe we can share what’s worked and what hasn’t – please share in the comments below:
Step 1 – Realize that my money situation is ALL on me
This was a hard one to accept. As a single mom who quit a factory job in 2007 I thought my money issues were because I had a crappy job. They weren’t. They were always my responsibility.
Step 2 – Stop searching for answers and “formulas” from others
When I decided I needed to fix my issues rather than looking to just plug into to other people’s formula’s I really started to become aware of my deep-seeded money mindset problems and I STARTED to work on them.
Step 3 – Stop living beyond what I can afford
Of course you’ve heard this before! One and a half years ago, after my last consolidation, I FINALLY decided that if I didn’t have the money to pay for it, I didn’t buy it. Now that’s been great but it still can keep you in “paycheck to paycheck” mode even if you’re running a business.
Step 4 – Start looking for assets
I’m at this step right now. I’m keenly aware that I’m not living above my income but I’m also not living BELOW it, either. I have decided my next step is to look for assets and ways to leverage my time and money.
Step 5 – Seek help
It’s hard asking for money help! A course hit my inbox sometime late last year called Money, Manifesting & Multiple Streams of Income by Leonie Dawson and as soon as I saw it I signed up. It was the help I was looking for and helped me save over $19,000 in overspending I was doing! More on that in a moment.
I don’t have ALL the steps. I don’t know ALL the money things.
What I do know, from taking to other moms and business owners, is that I’m not the only one who struggles with money.
I try, whenever possible, to start conversations about money because I’m always curious how people manage their money and how they’re doing in general.
Many times I find others are struggling, too, to manage their money and get ahead.
There’s no shame here!
By the way – hello and welcome to Peace, Love & Laptops! I thought a post about money would e a perfect way to start this blog out because it is going to be about money, making money from home (or the coffee shop), parenting and business, friendships and so much more.
I’m SOOOO excited to share with you, to have heart to hearts about what’s on our minds and come up with ideas, tips, resolutions and guides to navigate this world where anything is possible and even probable when it comes to earning an income YOUR way.
So, let’s get back to this amazing program I mentioned:
One of the FIRST activities we do in this program is to go through all the expenses we have currently and then decide what to get rid of. There is a brilliant included set of spreadsheets, one for life and one for business, that I filled in and ended up seeing how much I would save just by cutting any expenses I could.
It became addicting! I was watching the savings go up and up and up!
On top of really earning back WAYYYY more than what I paid for this program in the first activity I think went on to learn about multiple streams of income from Leonie, who is just someone I ADORE.
I didn’t complete all the activities the first time and now that Leonie is running the program again and I get free access -woohoo!
One of the activities I REALLY intend to do this time is to set a money goal and use one of Leonie’s templates to track that goal.
Also – the community of people doing this course WITH YOU is powerful. You’ll see my testimonial I posted in Leonie’s Facebook group here:
So I’ll be in this course, again.
The main focus of the training is:
Multiple Streams of Income
If you’re looking to get your money shit resolved them it’s smart to learn from someone who’s been there.
It’s only $79 but you have to grab it within the next couple of days!
If you buy this course I’ll also give you my Money Master Challenge, a challenge I wrote almost immediately after consolidation of my debts in 2018. I put together a challenge of all the actions I had been taking to get my money in order and capping off with the consolidation. See that here (it’s priced at $39 but get it free if you buy the Money Master Challenge – just email firstname.lastname@example.org when you grab Leonie’s program).
In 2007 I quit my stinkin’ factory job to work from home as a single mom.
Sounds awesome, right?!
Well it’s not the full story of course, it’s a headline. It’s a small, awesome piece of the full story.
I want you to know the FULL story, or at least the fuller story, so you can get a much better idea of this whole work at home, Laptop Lifestyle thing and decide if it REALLY is for you.
In 2007 I was a single mom and living in my parent’s basement apartment with my son.
I have a diploma in Chemical Engineering Technology – Environmental. Most of the jobs in my field were an hour (plus traffic) commute away and I really just wanted to be close to my son so I took a job closer, at an automotive factory. They painted car bumpers and I worked afternoon shift. It was a dreary, smelling, dark and depressing place (to me).
When you talk soul-sucking jobs I’m pretty sure there are pieces of mine left in that old building.
That’s dramatic but it’s how I felt back then. It was before I really understood mindset and thinking that you are stuck and desperate in your situation. If I had a better mindset back then I am SURE I wouldn’t have struggled so much and so hard as I did.
Back to the point, though!
I HATED my job. H.A.T.E.D.
I had been there for three years and ended up there after a number of years of trying to build a business of various forms.
I had sold soaps and bath products. I had sold Registered Education Savings Plans. I had a newsletter on how to sell soaps and bath products. I had sold candles with a network marketing company.
None of it had “worked” for me. Again, back to the mindset thing as I review my thought patterns back then. I know now nothing “works” >>>> YOU WORK IT. Any of those business are very viable and real potential for profit but back then I was just looking for the answer instead of realizing that I was the answer.
So… with my underdeveloped mindset as a hindrance, I worked at this factory. Day after day I went and I tried to figure out HOW the HELL I get myself out of this and into a business I absolutely loved. I had started a Virtual Assistance business but it wasn’t yet making the kind of money I needed in order to quit my job.
Then… my defining moment happened.
I was assigned to clean out the massive ovens in the factory.
If you can picture this these ovens are not quite as tall as a person (I couldn’t quite stand in them) and about the width of two people holding out their hands. They wind through this huge factory building. A co-worker and I were sitting in these tunnels scraping paint and gunk off the walls. It was scary (because they were ovens and lock-out procedures didn’t really feel safe to me since the keys were left where the lock-out box was), it was stinky, it was sweaty work and it wasn’t my job.
So… I cleaned.
And I cried.
Tears running down my face and wiping them away fast so my co-worker didn’t see.
I was pissed.
I was upset.
I was DETERMINED.
I cried because I did not want to be where I was in my life at that moment. I didn’t know how I had ended up there. But I decided in that moment of total and complete frustration that I would GET OUT of that situation and NEVER EVER clean one of those dirty, dark and dank ovens again!
I never did.
I quit my job about nine months after started that virtual assistant business. That was definitely my first real mindset experience but I didn’t even know what I was doing at the time. Now I know that sheer determination and defiance was me setting into place the mindset needed to achieve what I wanted.
Keep reading! There’s more to this. Just thinking it and being so mad that I wanted it BAD wasn’t enough.
Then I PUSHED. I pushed hard.
I did what it took and gave absolutely everything I had to make it happen.
I worked from 3pm to midnight most nights and some nights until 1am or 2am if there was overtime.
Then, when I got home from work I started working on my client’s stuff. Usually I worked until about 3 or 4 am and then got up with my son around 8 or 9am in the morning.
For nine months straight.
I didn’t complain. I didn’t think it was too much. I didn’t think I needed to wait until someone told me what to do.
I just did. Then I did more. Then I did till I was literally falling asleep on my keyboard.
It wasn’t easy. It wasn’t even really all that healthy. I was DAMN HARD.
It earned me my freedom.
I walked away from that factory and those ovens and I never looked back.
THAT is the kind of dedication I had because I felt like the other way was NOT an option.
So… you ready?
You willing to do what it takes? What it REALLY takes?
Maybe you won’t have to do what I did. Maybe you will.
The point is do you want it so bad you’re not going to stop until it’s done?
Then, are you going to do what it takes to do the NEXT thing?
If yes, AWESOME! If yes then you should also know I didn’t do this solo. I had support of an incredible membership site who were there when I had questions, inspired me towards greater actions, lifted me up when things got hard (as they do) and taught me the things I needed to know to build my business. That support I got is exactly why I’m so passionate now about my own membership group, the Laptop Lifestyle YOUniversity.
We answer your questions.
We motivate and inspire you.
We train and teach you.
We connect with you.
I say we because this group isn’t just me and it couldn’t be what it is without the members. The total cool people building totally cool businesses who are in our membership and come to our weekly meetings.
You don’t need to do this alone! Join us and we will welcome you with virtual open arms!
Passive income has been the buzzword on the internet for as long as I can remember now.
The headlines are VERY enticing: Set it and forget it! Make money while you sleep!
The reality isn’t QUITE that easy but it’s most certainly worth your time, attention and action.
So in this blog post I wanted to do a few things: 1. Talk to you about some TYPES of online income you could generate and what you might want to choose. 2. Teach you how to incorporate this income INTO your business so that you can take more time off without starting a whole new business model. 3. Give you additional resources to take immediate action that gives you more time-freedom and let’s you focus on LIFE.
The bottom line here is I want you to get paid much more for your time than you do now.
Why It Matters to Me That You Know This:
Look… I can teach you stuff but without knowing WHY I’ve chosen it to bring to you then it might not seem all that important to you!
When I quit my job in 2007 I was working an entirely ACTIVE business model (see below for details). During the first six months of working from home full-time and having my first PROFITABLE business I encountered one of the biggest issues I’ve EVER encountered in business.
I was THRILLED to have quit my factory job and be working from home and replacing the income I had but what I was doing was working myself sick and breaking my body at the same time. I’d spend almost ALL DAY at the computer. My son basically saw the back of my head non-stop while I clicked away on the keyboard. I was NOT moving my body. I was NOT taking time for self-care (what the F was that?).
One day my parents dragged me off my computer and for a walk and I commented that it HURT to walk. My mom (in a pretty not-happy-with-where-your-life-is-headed voice) said “your muscles are in atrophy”, “you need to move”. She wasn’t wrong. I was working myself night and day and I was doing TERRIBLE work, too, because I was exhausted AND I was ruining my body. I knew something had to change. I quickly realized that ALL active income and no boundaries and working for too little pay was a REALLY BAD PLAN. So I set out to change it.
I needed to get really CLEAR on the types of income I wanted to generate for my business and really, my life. Below you’ll get the details YOU can use to make this clarity happen for yourself, too. Don’t fall into the trap I did – PLEASE. Keep those muscles a’moving!
Types of Online Income to Use or Leverage Your Time
Active Income is any kind of income where you need to be actively present for the income to arrive.
A typical example of this kind of income is any service where you get paid hourly. That can be coaching, teaching a class, writing for pay, providing freelancing services, etc.
This type of income of course takes up the most time. When you work one on one it pulls even more of your time. Sometimes I recommend freelancers who want to create more free time move from the one to one model and into the one to many model. This is still “active” income but it generally allows you to earn a lot more per hour then you would working with one client at a time.
I think active income has a place in many businesses. When I was teaching a group coaching program on WordPress I was also working one on one with WordPress website design clients at the same time. It gave me the experience and kept me up on the fast-changing industry.
I also have a lot of people I work with who will do coaching alongside of creating digital products and selling programs as an affiliate. This allows them to really get a good understanding of the people they are serving.
Passive income is not MAGIC INCOME. Let’s get that right from the start. You can’t just expect to come online with your business, set up this one-time blast of business stuff, leave it and forever collect your money while sipping margaritas. You know this, right? I know you do because you’re here and you’re smart and you know nothing really comes for free.
The beauty in passive income is that it CAN keep coming in AFTER you’ve done the work. I’ll add that it usually needs maintenance and almost never lasts forever.
Good ways to earn passive income online include:
Your Own Products. Products you’ve created that sell because of systems you’ve put in place (automation, traffic flowing to an offer from blog posts, etc).
Affiliate marketing. Where you sell someone else’s recurring income product OR you get credited for an initial sale and THEN repeat sales from the same customer. My affiliate program, Coach Glue, Kelly McCausey, Nicole Dean & Cindy Bidar all do this in our affiliate programs – send us ONE sale and you’ll get commissions on MORE sales… they could pop in at anytime passively!
Combine Active Income and Passive Income. If you are selling products that tend to lean towards the active income side then you have a good opportunity to build in passive income by recommending very relevant and useful offers to your existing customers. Do this WELL, don’t add useless info or crap, and your customers will thank you for it while you collect more passive income. Your clients and customers WANT to know what you recommend because they’re often unsure what to use and they trust your opinion so guide them well and you’ll be doing them a SERVICE by offering them products, services or software you can earn a commission on. The key here is that you would recommend them with or WITHOUT an affiliate commission.
Who doesn’t want passive income!? It’s a beautiful thing. Just remember this DOES take work.
Additional Income to Pay Attention to: Recurring Income
I built my membership site, the Laptop Lifestyle YOUniversity, because I wanted Recurring Income. I wanted the money to come in without my customers to have to make that buying decision month after month and without my always having to be selling. I wanted a “base income” to build on. I also wanted to “future-proof” my income. As you know life happens and it happens when you LEAST expect it so having build-in income that does not require you to always be present is ESSENTIAL.
And that’s what recurring income can be for you. A base which you build upon and a safety net. So don’t discount considering this in your deciding on where to spend your time in your business and choose wisely. This is the beauty in business, too. If you’ve been choosing something that isn’t getting you those results right now you have all the power you need to make the change, starting now. 🙂
Recurring Income can be either active OR passive.
My membership is an Active Recurring Income. I have to show up weekly for the meetings, create new content regularly and show up in my community forums on a daily basis. That is not something that I mind doing because I’ve made it my business model.
On the flip-side, the affiliate commissions I earn monthly from Aweber, my email marketing software, are Passive Recurring Income. I sold the customer into the software ONE TIME and then I get paid recurring commissions each month or year, etc without doing anything further.
Deciding Which Income to Work On:
Have you calculated what you make per hour recently? I don’t mean just the hourly RATE you charge, I mean the rate you earn from the work you are doing in your business day after day. If you don’t know how to calculate this here’s a really simple method:
Do something that earns you money and then divide it by the time it took you to earn that money. I like to do this for my email marketing. I might take 60 minutes to write an email. If that one email makes me $200 then my hourly rate for the whole thing is $200/hour. I also like to calculate mine down to the minute so that would be $200/60 = $3.33/minute. Not bad!
When you add PASSIVE income into this, then it gets REALLY beneficial. So let’s say I didn’t sell a workshop and instead I sold software that paid me $10/month commissions and members regularly stay 2 years or more. Let’s say I sold 10 of those software programs from one email . In this case I’ve got $100/month for two years from a 60 minute email. That’s $100 x 24 months – $2400. That means I’ve $2400/hr and $40/minute.
Clearly I’ve really multiplied my efforts for the same amount of time by adding in a passive income affiliate offer!
Now of course we always want to work on the higher earning incomes but it’s not QUITE that easy.
While the imaginary email I sent out was a great success and earned me $40 per minute, that’s not always the reality of your passive income efforts. They can take a lot more time to see results than your active income efforts and then can add up to a lot less than if you were charging hourly.
It’s a balance!
Sometimes you need to work on your “now income”, your Active Income. Sometimes you need to work on your “later income”, your Passive Income. Sometimes you get to work on your “now AND later income” at the same time! Your Active AND Passive. Sometimes you hit the jackpot and get to work on your “now, later AND recurring income” at the same time! WOOHOO!
Being fully aware that they exist and making conscious choices on how to use them is how you start weilding time to your advantage and creating income that generates you more per minute than you did before!
Additional Training & Resources
I mentioned up above a number of websites that offer affiliate commissions on additional sales after the first sale. You’ll want to check those and go sign up to their affiliate programs! You can join my affiliate program here.
To learn MORE about affiliate marketing and passive income there’s a course from a fellow “Beachie Sister” named Karon Thackston. The Beach House is this magical business retreat I attended almost two years ago now and the ladies I know from that house hold a special place in my heart as the kind of people I WANT the world to know about. Karon in recent years turned focus from higher end client work into creating more passive income and she’s been VERY successful at it. I recommend her as a go-to person to find out more about how to convert your own income into more passive and build more freedom into your lifestyle.
Let me officially introduce you to Karon Thackston with her bio:
Karon is an online business pro with over 20 years of experience. She built her biz, Marketing Words, in 1999, and knows firsthand how entrepreneurs can begin to resent their businesses when there’s a stress overload.
After unexpected growth — and working 18 hours a day to keep up — Karon discovered a (then) new concept called passive income. Now she is laser focused on this revenue stream (especially affiliate marketing) because it brings large sums of money to her every single month.
I’m so excited to learn from Karon myself. Especially because her jumpstart program is created to guide you to one of the easiest ways to earn passive income – through affiliate marketing.
You won’t need to create your products. You won’t need to do customer service. You won’t need to worry about customer retention (buying more products). You won’t need to worry about graphics, design elements, branding. You won’t get stuck in product procrastination or worries about imposter syndrome – the product is DONE, you just need to tell people about it!
How to choose the best affiliate products
to promote that your audience will love.
Whether various affiliate products are
actually worth your while or a great big time suck.
The warning signs to be aware of. (Better
to reject these offers!)
How to make affiliate revenue a priority
and consistently build your passive income month after month.
Numerous free ways to share affiliate
products even if you don’t have an email list.
Here’s what a couple of Karon’s students have to say after taking her Passive Income Jumpstart course:
“The Passive Income Jumpstart helped me steadily increase my income by finding and promoting the right mix of offers to my coaching and consulting community. That’s a win-win-win!” — Kat Sturtz
“I can use the worksheets and spreadsheet to make sure each affiliate offer has everything I need: a good fit with my audience, great customer service, the right commission, quick payout, etc.” — Stacey Myers
If you’re looking for a proven way to start (or revive) your affiliate marketing efforts, this is it.
Let’s summarize this for you because if this is a new concept it could feel like a lot or if it’s a refresher we can always use a clear recap:
The three types of income that help you keep a healthy business and generate more time-freedom are: Active, Passive and Recurring Income.
Add passive income INTO what you’re already doing, especially your products and services that you ALREADY SELL, by talking about what you use and love to earn affiliate commissions. Add automation and easy ways for people to buy your products when you are not there (scheduled emails, blog posts and more).
For more learning and resources on this topic learn from a master passive income earner who’ve I’ve met in person and am very impressed by – Karon Thackston. Her program is Passive Income Jumpstart.
Did you like this post? Want to future posts and lots of marketing tips, insights, motivation and guidance via email? I email every single day to be right by your side as you build your Laptop Lifestyle! I’d love you to join my community of almost 4,000 people who are creating total lifestyle freedom so they can work anywhere, with anyone, work on anything they want and choose WHEN to do it. Total freedom so you can create a LIFE first and then build your work around what you want and love to do in life… novel idea but it’s absolutely possible! Get on the email list to learn all about it:
You don’t have to hate marketing. You really don’t.
Matter of fact you’ll LOVE marketing when you understand what gets you results!
The struggle most people have is figuring out what marketing to do. They ask questions like “what’s the best way to market my business?” or “what’s the easiest way to market my business?”.
You want the answers to those questions but you have to ask an entirely different question to get it. The question you should be asking is: “What will MY market respond to from ME and how can I get them excited to buy MY products?”
It sounds like it’s all about you, but it’s not. It’s all about your target market AND you. That combination is so unique that it’s 100% different than any other business in the world! That means you have the ability to really connect because YOU are unique.
But how? What do you do, exactly?
I’m going to give you three EASY steps to figuring this out. Here they are: Step 1: Pick a marketing method. Step 2: Do it. Step 3: Repeat.
Whoa sounds WAY too easy, right? It really IS that easy when it works. The place where people get super stuck is thinking it HAS TO work the first time or they’re a bad business person, the product sucks or they did the marketing wrong.
No, no, no, no. That’s not how it works. Try something and see if it works. Be ready to keep at it and tweak it till it rocks if it does work. If it doesn’t work, try something else. That’s it.
If you believe me and you’re ready to do this thing you’ll next need a marketing method. That can be a major obstacle too, I totally get it. That’s why I’ve created my list of marketing methods found below. I’m adding to this list anytime there’s something new for you.
Before you grab the list below (feel free to copy/paste wherever you need it), let’s talk about the steps:
Step 1: Pick a Marketing Method
This is not like picking a husband, or a wife. You’re not committed for life so just go for what you think will work. Use your gut, your instinct. Pick something low risk if you’re not for what you think will work. Use your gut, your instinct. Pick something low risk if you’re not confident. Pick something you can implement FAST. Action is the KEY to building results and confident. Pick something you can implement FAST. Action is the KEY to building results and fast action that getsfast action that gets fast results builds your confidence. fast results builds your confidence.
I’’d like to add that your number one marketing method to focus on should be email d like to add that your number one marketing method to focus on should be email marketing. You know you’’ve heard it before and you’’ll likely hear it again that you need to build an email list. It is the most direct line to your build an email list. It is the most direct line to your market. It’’s been that way since very early on in online marketingand that’’s not going to change anytime soon.
Time and again other methods have gotten whipped out (search engine traffic, facebook pages, etc) and people have lost huge income and entire communities whim of someone else. You’re at the mercy of no one when you have your OWN email list.If that is not a marketing method you are currently putting a LOT of attention towards then I highly recommend you pick this method.
Let me clarify even further: When I say a lot of attention I mean that I am working on content for my email list or sending out for my email list or sending out emails to them almost every day. If you want great results you are going to find it a hell of a lot harder to make that happen with one email a week.
Step 2: Do It
Depending on your marketing method of choice this could be something you already know how to do or not. The thing to remember is this is your business and doing what makes the most sense to you and gets you results – keep tracking the RESULTS to see if you actually picked something that works and don’t just blindly keep doing it.
Let’s say you’ve picked “Emailing Your List”” as your marketing method. I don’’t care if your list is 3 people, 30 people or 30,000 people. Email them. Get them actively involved in communicating with you and getting to know who you are.
I have a client who emailed a small list of under 40 people all week long, two times a day, to bring them an “open house”. It was GREAT. I was so proud of her for . It was GREAT. I was so proud of her for activating that list, bringing them the value of free prizes and letting them know what she has to offer. Now she also grew her list in the process AND made sales. THAT is successful . THAT is successful marketing. It wasn’t thousands of dollars in sales, it was a FEW sales. THAT is where confidence starts, more things happen and the sales will grow from here.
Step 3: Repeat
This is where so many people just fall short. They never do step three. They try one thing and never try again. They try something and it doesn’t work so they assume nothing works and this whole internet business thing is a sham.
You MUST be willing to have things flop. You MUST be willing to give it time (and no, a few weeks or even a few months isn’t really much time).
If at first you don’’t succeed…… try again! try again!
Here’s a list of Marketing Ideas For You:
Marketing Methods: Direct Methods Email Your List Personally Contact a Customer Personally Contact a Lead
Social Media Facebook Live Facebook Posts Twitter Posts YouTube Linked In Posts Instagram SnapChat Pinterest
Advertising Facebook Ads Google Ads Newsletter Ads Paid Solo Email Affiliate Program
Content Methods Webinar Host a JV Webinar Podcast Be a Podcast Guest Post on Your Blog Guest Blog Post Get someone to review your product (blogger, podcaster, etc).
Selling to Customers Email Add on Products Email Affiliate Products
Search Engine Marketing Rank pages that lead to products. Rank pages that lead to opt ins.
My Six Figure Story:
I made my very first six figures (finally!) in 2018 and I used a few of these methods consistently to make that happen. If you’d like to get a pre-recorded training of How I Brokethrough to My First Six Figures then you can just pop your name and email below. You’ll be registered for my daily marketing and laptop lifestyle messages and I’ll shoot you over the link to watch the free video!
It was NEVER my goal to be a service provider yet in 2007 I quit my job to be a Virtual Assistant. By 2012 (five years later) I told my last client that I would no longer be providing them services and I claimed my full lifestyle freedom badge (at least that’s how I see it).
You see, I do believe that those in a service-based business can have lifestyle freedom. I do believe they can have a laptop lifestyle.
For me, that wasn’t enough. I wanted to have ZERO people who could input or influence my work, my schedule, my projects and, ultimately, my vibe.
I find dealing with people EXHAUSTING, especially after they’ve paid you and really exclusively because they’ve paid you. Something happens to someone’s brain when you bill them for your time. They believe they OWN that time and they’re kind of right, right?
I mean, I do it too. I pay someone for 10 hours of work and I feel like I have the right to those 10 hours. I feel like I can tell them what to work on, how I want it done, when to have it done by and more.
Clearly I have outsourcing issues, issues with authority, being told what to do, etc… Clearly I have issues. haha. But that’s not the point of this post and it’s a good topic for mindset work in the near future.
I’ve never really talked about WHY I transitioned or gone into much detail as to HOW I did it either. But these days I have nothing to hid and I will take a stand faster than I ever did.
And today I want to take a stand for YOU if you’re in a service-based business purely because you’re not sure what to do to start or complete the transition.
While I can’t give you the exact formula – I don’t have one – I CAN tell you what I did to create the transition and reading it might just help you discover your transition from services to digital CEO, too!
Leveraged Services FIRST
As I said I never had the intention to be a service provider and I had spent from 2002 when my son was born until 2004 trying a few different physical and then digital-product based businesses. I tried affiliate marketing, network marketing and even financial services selling, too. But, it was only two years into my journey and I needed money as a single mom so I took temp jobs while lead me to a factory job on an afternoon shift.
I have a diploma in Chemical Engineering Technology but the jobs for that were at least an hour’s commute away and I just wouldn’t do it and spend that much time away from my young son.
While working the job, after having tried so many things and feeling like a failure of a single mom in a factory job, I discovered Virtual Assistance. A friend in a mastermind group I was in said she was quitting being a VA and working “dollars for hours” in her business and my only thought was that I’d LOVE to work dollars for hours doing something I loved like working on websites, writing blog posts and helping people make money online. So I jumped right in! I got a lot of clients quickly but that’s a whole nother story.
Me and Hayden after I quit my job. This was for “Business in Your Bathrobe Day”
2. Worked My Ass Off, For a Season
So… I was working afternoon shift at a factory job. My shift started at 3pm and ended at 11:30pm-ish if I remember correctly. I had a four year old son and I had just taken on 15 clients within 24 hours.
My plate was full! I was so excited! I saw it as a way to quit my job and that was the ONLY thing I could see.
I couldn’t see any potential issues that were going to arise. I couldn’t see how much work it would be. I couldn’t see that this was not my long term plan.
So I barreled through. I worked my ass off for a season. From the time I started being a VA in 2006 until the time I quit about nine months later in 2007 I would get home from work at midnight or later (depending on overtime) and then work on my client’s work. I’d do 2-4 hours of client work and then go to bed and often get up with my son in the morning (unless one of my parents were watching him).
Most nights I got 5-6 hours sleep. Running on five hours sleep is HARD but it wasn’t forever. I worked through that and I earned my freedom… or so I thought.
3. Realized Services Were NOT For Me
I hit a rock bottom in my business, and kind of in my life, when I had been sitting at my computer for about three months straight. And I’m not joking. After I quit my job I was spending about 12 hours PER DAY on my computer.
I thought the harder I worked the more money I made.
Yet I made so little while working for so long.
I felt completely trapped, overwhelmed, overworked and honestly, confused. I thought this was what I wanted and yet I hated it and I felt like the worst mom in the world for quitting a job that actually gave me more time with him than the business I had envisioned would give me freedom.
I want to tell you that not all VAs live like this. Not all VAs have no time for their families, to shower, for honoring themselves or any kind of life. Some VAs create balance and love what they do and this is a great type of work for them. Same goes for Coaches, Consultants or any service-provider. There is a way to enjoy the service-based industry but I just didn’t want to figured it out.
So I started planning my escape.
At one point I went on a job search. That ended quickly. I did pare down my business to almost no clients and started again. I looked for clients I LOVED and kept the ones I already LOVED. It was good while I plotted my next moves.
Here’s a blast from the past! My Virtual Assistance website I created all in HTML hand code before moving to a WordPress website a few months later. I kind of still really love this site:
4. Freedom Escape Plan
I hear from a lot of people who would like me to tell them how to transition out of services and I think they think they can do it in a few months and BOOM, they’re all out of services.
Maybe. But that’s not how it worked for me.
Around 2008 I created my first course. It was called “Gimp Graphics Mojo”. That course was created as a direct result of knowing what my CLIENTS needed help with. So I leveraged the work I was doing with them to start a digital empire.
Then, in 2010, I created another course that I could see a great need for because of my clients. I saw my clients hiring website designers (others or myself) and really having no idea what they needed to give them to get a website up. They had no understanding of how a website worked, how WordPress worked and how to maintain a website after it was created. So I trained them. I basically took their problem and created my most profitable program to date.
Two years later, after working on my courses the entire time AND opening up a membership site to create a consistent income I THEN let my last client go, in 2012.
That’s about four years to my freedom.
Now… I love to remind myself to take time to step away, go to the beach which always refreshes me and ENJOY this laptop lifestyle, this freedom life I live. I know not everyone has it for one reason or another so I am grateful every single day:
5. Revel in My Freedom
I appreciated the freedom SO MUCH. I was becoming a leader in the industry for teaching how to use WordPress but you know what? I STILL didn’t feel like it was the right thing for me.
I had made over $100,000 over a few years with the topic of WordPress training and I’m sure I could have scaled that up x10 but I had had enough of teaching a software that was ever changing and it was yet another thing I had done to get me from where I didn’t want to be (VA Services) to where I was at the time (WordPress Courses & WordPress Membership).
So I pivoted. In 2015 I created what is now called the Laptop Lifestyle YOUniversity because I knew I was not the only one who created complete and TOTAL lifestyle freedom.
NOBODY tells me what to work on.
NOBODY tells me when my projects are due.
NOBODY tells me who to work with.
NOBODY tells me where to work.
NOBODY tells me shit, really. lol.
I TELL ME. And I love it that way. I finally found my “calling” and get this, it only took, um, like 13 years?!
So… when you tell me you’ve been at this for two years and you don’t have it all figured out yet excuse me if I pause and calculate the years I struggled hard and then remind myself how VERY worth it it was!
Here’s how I started Website Design Mojo:
My friend and I were chatting on the phone. I remember it plain as day. She had a successful course teaching people how to create videos and I was complaining to her that I didn’t want to do services and nothing else was working for me.
SHE was the one who said… “You know, you’re so good at WordPress websites, why don’t you create a course in that.”
My email list was very small at the time. I had gathered a few hundred people onto my list from selling the graphics course, a little case study about how I became a virtual assistant and a few telesummits and webinars I had done. I didn’t care how many people I had on my list, I decided to sell it anyway.
I don’t have any memory of how many people joined that first class but I know I had registered people and I was so EXCITED!
I also had NOTHING prepared. You see, I had pre-sold the course, just like I had talked about in this vlog post.
Pre-selling allowed me to just put it out there. I wrote the details of what I would teach, put it on my website, added an order button from my shopping cart and started selling!
THEN I created. I remember also so clearly we were going on vacation to Newfoundland, Canada, where I’m from and I had planned to create my videos and also host my live Q&A calls from my grandmothers. And I did! I hid myself away and got it done, while on vacation!
That program grew and grew. I was very proud of it.
I encourage you to get moving, get doing, get launching and create something YOU are proud of. Would you do that for me? I’d LOVE to hear about it!
I’ve mentioned the Laptop Lifestyle YOUniversity in this post. If you’d like to learn more about my membership and how you can join us you can go here.
My friend Cindy Bidar also has a great set of checklists and templates for launching products that you’re likely to find really helpful for that product you just promised me you’ll create. Find those here.
Ever feel like the product creation process takes TOO LONG and that you’re procrastinating too much? Well I almost NEVER create my digital products before I sell them. I sell first, create next and in this video I’ll tell you how and why there are so many advantages to doing so, including being a fast and prolific product creator! (aka make money faster) ☕?? Ang