Many times, you learn more from the struggle than the success.
You see, my blog income is down from the previous month. Don’t worry! I’ve made a few changes and I’m pursuing a different blog strategy.
And yes, that strategy still includes making money.
I find it so hard to report a downslope. We are conditioned to equate upward income with the success of a business. But the truth is that you have your good months and you have your great months.
Make no mistake, this is a great month. I’ll show you why.
Ok, I’ve made a big decision. But first, a little story.
You know from my previous income reports that I joined a Mastermind group called Elite Blog Academy VIP. Our group meets via secret Facebook group, we have advanced trainings and are there to help each other out with blogging issues.
Now the cool part: I got to meet my Mastermind group in person this month!
Ruth Soukop, founder of Elite Blog Academy, flew all of us out to Seattle to participate in the re-filming of Elite Blog Academy. She releases the new version in early 2017 so make sure you get on that waiting list!
The women in my group are nothing short of amazing. I joined with the sole purpose of wanting to surround myself with people more successful than me. While I feel like a small fish, that’s the point.
We brought our laptops and camped out in the lobby of the SeaTac Crowne Plaza. The huge ah-ha from this was not just my other group members advice and help, but also seeing how they worked. I saw how they organize themselves, how they think strategically and how they run things.
And you know what? I realized that I can do it, too.
A little voice inside my head shut off. There was no magic. These people were not supreme beings – although they are very lovely! No, they are real women working their asses off with specific systems to keep them in check.
I can do this.
In fact, I created the Six Secrets of Successful Bloggers – a 6 day free video e-course – after realizing these truths in all of these big blogger’s careers. And I was happy to find… that I was doing it my own career, too.
After Seattle, I made three big changes –
Nail Email Marketing
Emailing is not only getting clicks to your site or purchases of a product. A blogger’s email list is gold. There are real people on it who crave connection and inspiration.
I need to be more consistent.
I condensed my parenting and style lists into one email newsletter that gets sent every Tuesday. My goal in my newsletter is to build a relationship with my readers – to be vulnerable, truthful and positive.
Stopping Sponsored Posts
Just writing that causes a chill to course through my body. My sponsored post work is my main source of income!! Eekk!
But here’s the thing, they are one-offs. No sponsored posts in my most popular posts. In fact, sponsored work connects the least with my audience. These posts take a lot of time and I am not seeing enough benefit.
But what about the money? Well, my sponsored rate is pretty low right now due to my page views tanking with the Pinterest change over the summer. While I’m still working to regain ground there, I need to focus on more long-term investments.
Investing in Myself
Me. I’m my long-term investment.
Since I started Whimsicle, I haven’t been spending nearly what I’ve been making. It’s all been accumulating in my business account.
I didn’t know what to spend it on. You hear how you should invest everything you make back in your business, but where?!?
Myself. That’s where.
EBA VIP was my first huge investment. I also signed up for Jeff Walker’s Product Launch Formula this month for $2,000.
Whoa, right? But, if I’m going to reach my goals for next year, I need more marketing know-how. Jeff Walker is the master of email marketing, so I’ll be learning from the best.
I was at 100,000 page views in June. Excuse me while I go cry in the corner.
Ok, I’m over it.
42,000 is still a lot of page views. Ideally, I do want that number to go up but I’m done with the “woe is me”.
I’ll be focusing on optimizing my posts for SEO – they’re not currently, bad blogger – and remaking a few Pinterest images to have bolder headlines.
Ad Revenue: $272.62
$270 is about half of my monthly expenses… which is great. Ideally, I would love for ad revenue to cover all my operating costs.
Affiliate Income: $191.17
Amazon and a couple of checks from POGO Pass that I may have forgotten about and didn’t find until I cleaned my desk. Ooops.
It’s the beta test of my course Outfit Mastery!! I got paid! Watch out for it. I’m launching it again in late January.
Sponsored Posts: $427.99
Usually, this amount is about $1000 more, but a payment got held up this month. It happens and we deal.
Ok… I warn you. I spent some cash this month. Here’s the breakdown:
I use ActiveCampaign for my email marketing and love it! In fact, my list in growing and I will need to upgrade my plan very soon. This amount also includes a few Facebook ads that I’m using to grow my email list.
Bank Charges 2.20
Have to pay the man.
Legal & Professional Fees 2,133.99
Oh, sigh. This is Jeff Walker’s Product Launch Formula class as well as a Google analytics book and two products that I am looking into being an affiliate for.
I have to have some secrets 🙂
Office Expenses 10.78
My Quickbooks software that lets me manage my expenses and do these income reports.
Various supplies from Dollar Tree for Arizona Midday segments.
I upgraded LeadPages this month so that I could A/B test on my sales pages. A/B testing is when I change a little thing in a sales page and see if it makes a difference in conversions.
I also bought SurveyMonkey for a year so that I would have access to the survey analytics.
Recently, I surveyed my email audience about Stitch Fix to discover the common hesitations about signing up. I used those in my email marketing campaign for my affiliate push of Stitch Fix the last week of November.
Also, Black Friday! Teachable had a great incentive to upgrade to a yearly subscription. Since my course isn’t going anywhere, I took advantage of the deal. I now have access to master classes about marketing online courses. Score!
Parking, Internet usage and transportation for my Seattle Trip.
Travel Meals 189.30
We went to the Space Needle for dinner. Mic drop.
This is my assistant. She schedules all the Whimsicle Pinterest and she did two roundup posts this month.
Total Expenses: – 4,073.90
Total Loss: -2,984.11
Remember how I said invest in myself? Yes, I took it to heart. Even though I am losing money this month, it’s a conscious decision meant to boost revenue in the future.
How is your blog doing?
Make sure to sign up for Six Secrets of Successful Bloggers – a 6 day free video e-course I’ll see you then!