$2752.1 + $558.02 + $348.85 + $23.5
(APB Referrals + MaxBounty Referrals + Teespring eBooks + JVZoo)
Total = $3,682.47
Just like that, October has gone by. Every month I look back to the last time I wrote a monthly report and wonder if I feel good about my progress or not.
Progress can come in many different ways. It can come as internal knowledge growth which is a slow, patient process. Many times you hardly notice it because things don't seem to change outwardly until all these small learnings come together.
Most of this year, I feel I've progressed in the above way. I knew if I had to learn long term income strategies, I would need to sacrifice my short term gains. I had to sacrifice that additional 2-5k/m and commit to learning a bunch of new skills that would take time, effort and money to learn.
Was it worth it? Who knows! All I know is that in business, as long as you're learning new things and persisting throughout all those down times to focus on something good at the end of the tunnel, you're doing the right thing and will eventually get there.
Kindle Book Testing/Approach
Like everything in business, there's a 'mainstream' or 'correct' way to do things. Of course you can go about getting the same results a variety of different ways but for the most part there's a process that works for successful entrepreneurs in any field and you should be looking to emulate them at the start of your journey. Once you achieve what they achieve then you can start varying things up, adding your own twist etc.
With Kindle, the process is to publish books, market them, get people to sign up to your book lists, use them to launch your next book, repeat. You do this 50 times and might have 2-3 big winners and a list of happy paying kindle customers who are patiently waiting for your book releases.
If you don't follow the process above, you'll suffer a little. You can spend hours, months, years writing your book but again, that's just one part of the process. You NEED to have a marketing strategy in play. It doesn't have to elaborate or full-scale, just something you can track the results of. Something you can learn of and use for the next marketing strategy for your books.
My Kindle approach has been a little different then most. I've written a few 3-5k word books. It takes me 2-3 days to pump these out. The sole purpose of these books are to offer them as free downloads and to use them as opt-in generators. The more people that download them, the more I'll have opting into my list. Once I have 1-200 people, then I can use the list to launch my premium books, (10-15k words).
The strategy makes sense in my head. I hate launching things without an initial fan base. Results are always disappointing.
Kindle Books Writing
I have no idea how I've been able to continuously write so much. I'll do 2-4k words a day, every weekday. Maybe I've just gotten used to it. Maybe somewhere deep inside, I actually enjoy it.
The curiosity of how these books will perform once they're out there is a big drive to get them done. I have about 6 books ready to be published and marketed. For some reason, it's easier for me to open a new word document, label it something interesting, and start a new book. Maybe it's because it's the part of the process I'm most comfortable with.
Publishing and Marketing your book is scary. It's scary because it's when the real world will tell you whether your book is good or not. It's scary thinking all those hours spent writing could amount to nothing. At the end of the day, this is the part of the process I, (we), should be focusing on. It's the marketing part that makes the big difference. I've seen crap books sell real well because they're cover is great, they have decent ratings and most likely have a launch list.
Instagram Account Growth
My side project has been pretty exciting. It's reached 2.5k followers in around 2 weeks. Updating it takes less than a minute of my time and I'll post something every 2-3 hours.
I should really download a tool that lets me schedule posts but at the moment, I'm still deciding whether or not I want to continue with this. Most likely the answer to that is yes. I've seen many accounts over 30k doing shoutouts for people. It's safe to assume they're getting paid for this.
I know it'll still take me a while to get there but most of my time has been spent growing these organically. I'm going to spend some money next month paying for shoutouts and monitoring results. I'd love to grow it to 50-100k by the end of this year and wouldn't mind spend around $1k doing so.
Let's see what happens, I'll report next month.
Decluttering the mind/acting on ideas
Most of this year, I've forced myself to stop writing ideas down and to actually start implementing them. There's no point having a list of 100 awesome ideas and never acting on any.
I guess it's a nice way to train your creativity but if you want to make money and have a career in business, you need to do more then just that.
There needs to be a point where you stop planning, strategising, idea listing and start implementing. It's good to plan and strategise but if you're making this more than 70% of your daily business activities, you've got it all wrong. No amount of writing and reading is going to get you money.
At the start of this year, I had a tonne of ideas I wanted to implement. I was sure that they'd make me money. I implement all of them. Every single one. None of them gave me the results I was looking for but with each passing project, I learnt what not to do. This is where the real value was. I also decluttered my mind so it focus on my main task.
This time, I'm focusing on kindle. Why? Because there are others making a lot of money with it, consistently. I've learned to follow someone else's process till I make it my own.
Testing Before you Commit
I really need to address this point.
I've seen a lot of people, myself included in the early days, commit to projects without testing it. They have a vision and work on that vision for months, years, even decades!
They'll continue writing their eBooks or perfecting their product/service/website/etc. You need to start doing things in reverse.
In business we test first, then we commit. Want to start a local lawn mowing business? Before you go around paying for logos and accountants, door knock 50 homes and offer to mow their lawn. See how much they're willing to pay and if you like the type of work. Is it for you? Does it make enough money for you to stick with it? Are you happy? It's free to do this and will probably take a full day but can save you thousands and months spending time on something that can be something you don't want to do.
Another example would be to run some FB ad traffic to some eBook Covers. See what people click on most. Is a particular cover giving you really bad results? Good, you've just saved yourself a couple of months of working on a bad idea. Is one giving you great results? Even better! Now start working on it. At least this way you know it will succeed.
Doing things like this can help you grow a lot faster then most people in business. Once you've accepted this way of thinking and approach to business, it'll take you to the next level.
What Yearly Goals should you look to Achieve
With the year almost over, I'm starting to reflect on what's happened in 2015. Am I where I want to be?
In some ways I am, in many ways I'm not.
I've always set specific financial goals which have been easier to work towards in paid affiliate marketing. My income was almost directly related to the amount of effort I'd put in so all I had to do was maintain my motivation levels and work ethic to get the income I wanted.
With long term strategies, it's a little different. You work on an idea for a few weeks to a few months and realise it's a crap idea, then you take your learnings and move on. You learn a LOT but financially, are kind of in the same place.
It's up to you on setting your goals. I've always had the opinion that, as long as you can look back a year and be satisfied with how much you've frown internally, you're doing great.
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