February 2013 Monthly Report

Like I mentioned last month, I decided to do monthly update reports since people seemed to have an interest in them.  It’s a bit different than my normal content, but I try to make sure the update posts have value in them past just showing the blog stats/growth update. Here are a few topics covered in this post:

  • My first dollar from blogging
  • Latest traffic and subscriber stats
  • What happens when a top influencer shares your content
  • Why Facebook marketing is changing and what I’m doing about it
  • Why it’s +EV to gamble for office rent
  • Going to China?
  • An entrepreneur meetup
  • A few interesting businesses to think about

Blogging Update: 

Traffic screenshot from February:


Subscriber Count:

January 31st: 1,803
February 28th: 2,001

February subscriber growth: +198 subscribers

I made 2 blog posts in February:

Entrepreneurial Diworsification
January 2013 Monthly Report

Since I don’t blog much, the traffic/subscribers is substantially lower than if I was a “blogger”.  You can see from the traffic that it spikes when I release a post, and then drops off a cliff.

For full-time bloggers putting out high value, I think it’d be reasonable to grow a blog by several thousand subscribers per month.

I got 2,439 visits on February 4th, and just days later was in the 100s again.  Reason being, the majority of traffic is being generated by people who like the content and tell others about it.  Since there’s not much new content, there’s limited opportunities for this to happen. I’m also not writing about topics for SEO benefits, so the keywords that bring traffic are basically non-existant.  I’m not doing much of anything promoting the blog outside of the day I release a post.  I haven’t done guest posts/interviews in a while, as I’ve been busy with other projects and need to prioritize.

I think I may do an experiment where I become a full-time blogger for a month and show the results here on my blog.  If that’s something you’d want to see, leave me a comment below.  I think it’d be interesting to show how easy it is to grow a blog if done correctly, and show the math behind why it works.  I’d just need to set aside enough time to do it.

Another reason being a more full-time, or regular blogger is beneficial for growth is that other bloggers would be more likely to network/promote your content if they felt it might benefit their audience.

Pat Flynn was cool enough to share the Entrepreneurial Diworsification post on his Facebook page:


Because of this, the traffic didn’t die down right away from the post, and on February 5th, a day after my post, I still received around 80 subscribers.  All because someone who had a large audience that the post could help, shared it with them.


For full-time bloggers, maybe you’re writing 6-8 posts/month, as well as several guest posts/month.  On the days you’re not posting, you’ve probably still got people referring your material, so that people are constantly being led to your site.  Therefore, your site is consistently getting mentioned, which increases the % of people who subscribe, since they’re hearing of your site so much.  A full-time blogger who’s putting out high quality content would not have many dips in their graph.

Subscribers would compound quickly because of this.  The more subscribers you have, the more people you have sharing your content— this makes it much easier for a blog with 10,000 people to grow than a blog with 100 people.  Simple math.  If X % of your audience is sharing your post, the larger the audience you have, the higher traffic you get.  The higher traffic you get, the more subscribers you get.  Also, the higher number of times someone sees your blog recommended, the higher % chance that a visitor will become a subscriber.

Some people were interested in what, if any active marketing I was doing for the blog.  Well, not much.  I do daily quotes during the week here:

My Facebook Page

Since I started doing this, Facebook has been the top subscriber source(besides direct) for ForeverJobless.

I’m leaning towards starting to do the daily quotes on ForeverJobless, rather than on Facebook.  I’m noticing some obvious changes of Facebook posts getting less and less views, despite having more ‘likes’ than I used to on that page, and having at least the same % of likes/shares on posts per the number of views.  In other words, the posts aren’t any less popular, but they’re getting shown substantially less by Facebook.


Facebook is doing everything they can to try and start increasing their revenue.  They’re trying to get people to pay to promote posts, so they’re sacrificing good content for posts people pay to show.  Can’t blame them.  However, it will be interesting to see how everything plays out from a business perspective, because as their goal for money overcomes their goal for offering the best product/service possible, it will become not as good to use— it just depends how far they take it. It will be an extremely interesting business case study 10 years from now.

If they keep showing you exactly what you want to see, there’s no money in that for them.  They need to get you to help them make money, one way or the other. Getting you to click on things people are paying to advertise is one way, but if they go overboard they sacrifice the value of their service.

So, I see the amount of publicity they give ‘unpaid content’ going down more and more in the future.  I assume their algorithm will make it harder and harder to get a post to be seen on Facebook.

Because of this, I’m leaning towards moving the quotes here, but without sacrificing the content of the blog posts.  To do that, I’ll probably make a separate section on ForeverJobless specifically for quotes/images.  I may also give my own feedback/thoughts on them, and some extended advice.  Is this something that you’d be interested in seeing here under it’s own section?

Office Space

No, not the movie.

I share office space with my friend here in Austin who’s also an entrepreneur.  We both have pretty small teams, and have talked about the possibility of getting a big space, and filling it with cool entrepreneurs from the area.

There’s one company in Austin who does this currently, and it’s an awesome space: Capital Factory

We may look at doing a smaller version of that.  Maybe a space that holds 8-10 lean businesses.

It’s very good for brainstorming to work around other entrepreneurs who know what they’re doing.  On the plus side, I think it’d make going to work more enjoyable the more interesting/successful people you get to work around.  On the downside, running an office like that could end up turning into more of a project than anything else.  I’m trying to keep things simple.  Even though this would be more of a ‘fun’ project rather than a ‘make money’ project, the principles of diworsification still apply.  You don’t want to be juggling too many things, or your main priorities will suffer.

We just renewed for another year at our current space, and plan to evaluate over the next few months.

We decided on rent split in an interesting way.  His team is growing, and needs a higher % of the space.  We tossed some numbers back and forth and couldn’t come to an agreement.  I thought his number was too low.  So, I offered him the opportunity to flip a coin for it.  He agreed.

“Wait, but what if you lost?”

I did end up losing— however, it’s irrelevant whether I win or lose.  I was comfortable with the EV of the flip.  The EV was all that mattered.(I know I’ve been promising an EV post— it’s coming.)

There’s a part of me that’s debated not having an office at all and saving 5 figures a year on office space, but the increased efficiency of having an office probably more than pays for itself.  I may re-evaluate in the future depending on how my businesses change.


I mentioned in this post: ForeverJobless is Back that I would probably end up going to China at some point this year.

There’s someone here in Austin I was put in touch with who’s been buying from China for 15 years.  They offered to let me tag along with them and show me the ropes in April for the Canton Fair.  So, that’s probably going to sway me to doing it in April rather than waiting any longer.


I went to Arizona last month for an entrepreneur conference/get together.  I don’t really know if I’d call it a conference.  It’s a handful of usually about 25 entrepreneurs(this year was a bit bigger) who get together each year just to hang out and talk about things they’re up to.

It’s more of an ‘old friends’ get-together than a conference.  It all started about 7-8 years ago— we had our first meetup at the Rich Dad Headquarters in Scottsdale, AZ.  There are some epic details as to why we no longer have them there, but I won’t get into them in this post.

Since then, a lot of the same group has been going back to Arizona each year to hang out and talk business.

There were a bunch of cool people there—I always love catching up with the group. A few in attendance you may know: K, who I’ve mentioned several times on the blog(featured in the Ferrari post), and MJ who wrote The Millionaire Fastlane.(good book, I don’t recommend many)

Many people present on their businesses, or other interesting things they’re working on.  Here’s a few pretty cool/unique businesses that were there:

  • Peak Planet: A company that does trips for people who want to climb Mount Kilimanjaro.
  • Urbantrike: Basically ‘adult tricycles’.  They were recently featured on the popular show Duck Dynasty.
  • Ghillie Suit Clothing: A business that does anything/everything with ghillie suits.
  • The Paint Brush Cover: Pretty self explanatory— a cover for paint brushes.

The reason I wanted to point these out is, these are really cool niche businesses, that are very easy to understand.  Also, they’re probably not the type of business you’ve thought about before.  I think a lot of people get caught up in the ‘blogging world’— selling ebooks, banners, courses, etc…

These are real businesses, that solve needs.

If you can solve a need, the money will follow.

An easy way to not ruin your paint brushes?  Solved.  Because of the need they are solving, they have the potential to do extremely well.

Just because you haven’t heard of a niche before, doesn’t mean there’s not people who want it.  Who would have thought of Urbantrike? They found a niche where they could do it better than their competitors, and are doing well because of it.

Even if the niche doesn’t seem “big”, you can make it big in that niche, if you figure out how to be the best in that niche.

A ghillie suit?  You might not have heard of them before, but that doesn’t mean there’s not a market for them.

People want to climb Mount Kilimanjaro.  So… someone has to make that happen for them.

Sometimes niches that many people wouldn’t normally think about are great, because there’s not many ‘high value’ entrepreneurs in the space.  How many ‘how to blog’ courses or ebooks are needed?  There’s hundreds, if not thousands of guys selling them.  That’s “easy” to sell that, so many people go that route rather than putting an effort in finding something that’s actually needed.

Think outside your own box.  Selling what other bloggers are selling is NOT the best route to becoming an entrepreneur.  Go see what entrepreneurs who are taking action are doing.

No, this doesn’t mean copy these niches.  Don’t do that.  “What” you sell is irrelevant.  They aren’t successful because they sell a ghillie suit, or because they sell a paint brush cover.  They’re successful because they’ve worked hard at learning their niches inside and out.  The “what” they’re selling is irrelevant to their success. Create a cash cow in whatever niche you want— just solve people’s wants or needs, better than anyone else in the niche does, and you’ll find success.

One non-business presentation that I thought was pretty cool was someone who’s taking a 1 second video of their life every single day.  The goal being to capture something interesting that you did that day, to help you be able to go back and review your life very quickly.  It’s an awesome concept for multiple reasons.  It’s a way to be able to go back and look at all the cool stuff you did, and help you to remember different things you’d probably otherwise forget.  Also, maybe even more importantly— doing something like this, you’re likely to force yourself into creating a more interesting life.  You’re going to make an effort to do something interesting each day.  You’re not going to have 1 second videos of you sitting at your computer or your tv each day.  It seems like a project like this would be extremely +EV for most people.  Something that doesn’t take a lot of effort, but has the potential to have a big impact on the way you live just by being a constant reminder to make sure you’re doing interesting things each day.  Really awesome idea.  I feel like I get trapped in “grinding away” on projects too often, so I may consider doing this at some point since it would probably help with balance.

I gave a presentation titled: “How I Average 400 Subscribers Per Blog Post”.  I actually wrote this as a blog post in February, but haven’t published it yet.  At the time, I had 5 blog posts on the blog, and 1,982 subscribers.  I planned to use this as a guest post on another site, and just never published it anywhere.  I’m trying to start doing a little content on other sites to help the growth of the blog.  I would love recommendations/introductions on a good place to publish that post if you know of a high traffic blog that topic would make sense for.

Blogging Income Report

I made my first dollar as a blogger in February.  $1.36 to be exact. #ballin

I’ve purposely not monetized ForeverJobless up to this point.

Most blogs are all ‘pitch’, no ‘value’.  I wanted mine to be all ‘value’, no ‘pitch’.

So for first time readers who are wondering, “why don’t you just sell tons of stuff on the blog”?  That’s kind of the point.  I don’t have to.  That’s not the purpose of my blog.  The purpose is to add value.  If money comes because of the value I’m adding, great.

If you’re reading an entrepreneurial blog that needs to make money from their blog to survive, you’re not actually reading an entrepreneurial blog.  You’re reading a blogger’s blog disguised as an entrepreneurial blog who picked that as their niche, so they can sell you things.

I want to offer value.  A byproduct of offering value, is if/when I have something I recommend, it’s going to be obvious that it’s valuable.  People who do well in business don’t do so by pitching random products.  They do well by offering insane amounts of value.

Leave a comment below and tell me what I should do with my earnings. 🙂

38 Responses to “February 2013 Monthly Report”

  1. Joan Harrison

    It is so refreshing to read your posts. I come away being stirred into taking action and believing in myself. Build it an they will come (taken from The Field Of Dreams) springs to mind and it will be interesting to see how your site takes off when you are posting more. Will be intrigued to see what marketing plan you follow and the results.
    Keep it coming Billy, a shining light in amongst the ‘dross’.

    • Billy

      Thanks Joan— great to hear you’re enjoying my posts. Always nice to hear that. I appreciate the kind words!

  2. Matt L

    That Capital Factory setup looks awesome! I’m not quite in a position to utilize such a place yet but when I am I might have to see if there are similar sorts of things here in the UK.

    Hey Billy, do you tend to go to a few conferences a year or what? Again, something else I’d like to do more in the future is attend conferences with like minded people that also build legitimate, real online businesses, but I wouldn’t really know where to find the good ones. Do you have any advice in that regard?

    All the best,


  3. Diggy

    I think you can buy a hamburger at Mcd’s with your earnings! How did you even make that money since you have no ads or products on your blog?

    I like when you post, you’ve got unique perspectives. Would be really cool to see you do case studies of business ventures you undertake. E.g. buying a new website or ecommerce store and making it public, or just something else you attempt and where you outline your thought process of the whole project.

    Cheers Billy!

    • Billy

      Hey Diggy! Good to hear from you.

      Unfortunately I can’t have a hamburger since I’m currently in the middle of a diet/fitness challenge. :/ That does sound good though.

      I made money because I recommended a couple books on amazon in response to someone’s question in the comments on one of my posts. They ended up buying both of the books I recommended.

      I’m planning on doing some case studies at some point. I just need to get enough time to do them. Might do it on a new project I’ve been working on.

  4. Mats


    Another great post from you! Love it, and the fact that you have an income report for $1.xx, for many out there the $1.xx is the first big achivement. But they dont celebrate it.

    Value + Following will lead to more of the financial instrument, cash. Even if you dont want it to or not. People will give you cash, if they cant support you any other way.

    Make use of the cash and enlighten one person coming in from Google Adwords or save up to give $5 to facebook for post promoting.

    Invest it 🙂 Celebrate when the investment turns 10x.

  5. Jantje

    Thank you for sharing the details, Billy! I look forward to celebrating my first online earnings like you did 🙂

  6. Alex

    Hello Billy,

    thanks for another great post. I think it will be valuable to have those images on a separate section on your blog, along with some advice and comments. Perhaps then you could share either the image or the full link to your facebook page. It will probably be better both in terms of value and traffic (these tend to go together as you say).

    I don’t know if this seems like a dumb question or you want to keep it private, but I would love to know how you make these quote pictures with your logo on top. I mean if you use specific software or something, that makes it pretty easy and fast to do, I would love to know it.

    It would be a really cool experiment to run (be a full time blogger for 1 month), follow your marketing and see the differences between the two motnhs.

    I love MJ and his book, so since he has a blog and a great audience (both in numbers and quality), maybe you can figure out a post on his blog. It would be awesome!

    Keep ’em coming! 😀

    • Billy

      Thanks for your feedback on the quotes/images Alex. I have someone make those images for me.

  7. Brian @ Stocks and Cents

    I’m liking your potential startup space company you’re talking about up there. I know of one or two in Boston (where I’m originally from) that are extremely productive. I have a few friends that work at one. IT is tough to get the work done sometimes but it’s hard to not be creative when you’re there.

    Big fan of you work by the way. Really appreciate that your posts are so in depth and honest, not something you see everywhere. Keep it up!

  8. AllenCrawley

    Great post Billy. Really diggin’ the detail of your posts. If only more bloggers focused on value vs. gettin’ paid.

    It was great meeting you in AZ. One of my favorite presentations was Randall’s (and yours of course, lol).

  9. David Levin

    “If you’re reading an entrepreneurial blog that needs to make money from their blog to survive, you’re not actually reading an entrepreneurial blog.” Man, I love that. Laughed out loud.

    I’m really enjoying your posts. Glad we connected at SX. Looking forward to staying in touch.

  10. Sachin Bille

    Hello Billy,
    Great to see you doing well by considering SUBSCRIBERS 😉
    You are exactly pointed out ‘DESPERATE FACEBOOK TEAM’ who wanted to make money and loosing the value of posts, it’s annoying to see they promoting anything for money.
    I don’t think it will be great for you to give a MONTH BLOGGING SHOT for foreverjobless because that way you will might loose your focus on money making businesses. Another thing is that your STATS are good for a beginner. (Though you are a great blogger, your post are not just posts…they are VALUE). If you keep going with current speed it will be another case study in blogsphere, I will love to see a blogger who post only once in a month and still generate 200 subscribers/month and 6K visitors/month.
    Thabks for sharing value!

    • Billy

      Glad you’re getting value Sachin! Thanks a lot for the comment. I agree I wouldn’t do the 30 day case study on blogging full-time if it took away from my businesses.

  11. Sal DePaola

    Hey Billy!

    Great Post and thanks for the shout out! I love the idea of posting quotes and images on the blog. Facebook is really starting to get on my nerves lately. I understand that they need to make money, but don’t think they’re going about it the right way. They’re doing more harm than good.

    I hope to see you again soon. Maybe Shark Week. lol


    • Billy

      Agreed, I think Facebook runs the risk of hurting themselves if they try too hard to make money, rather than furthering the value they offer.

      Glad to give a shout out— good to see you having success. Excited to see how your upcoming campaign goes for you. Keep me posted.

      Until Shark Week!

  12. Victor E. A. Silva

    Hi Billy! What’s up?

    Well, I guess we’re all in for your posting full time for a month, we all like your posts so much, so more in this case means more.

    You talk about habing ideas and implementing problem-solving iniciatives, and to me it sounds very hard to come up with such an idea (I plan on reading the book you suggested, it is really cheap for Kindle). I wonder if there any shortcuts for having such ideas, especially for people who don’t have too much money to start with (and I guess looking for an angel investor could be really good when you have a solid project). Here in Brazil there is the SEBRAE, which means Brazilian Service of Support for Micro Enterprises (does that name make sense in English?). I guess they are always providing information on niches that could be explored and that if we do good as entepreneurs we can not tooooo hardly beat the competition. Now I wonder where people in US, like your friends from your micro conference, draw their ideas from.

    I think I’ll start something on the area I’ve graduated on – Psychology – and it would probably be geared towards personal (including self) personal development. It would probably have something to do with educational ventures, but it looks so equal to what a LOT of people are doing that it makes me question if this is the best niche for me to try to excel on. Actually, since it’s all about providing more value, there are always things to be done in any niche, but I must admit I also wonder what it would be like to have this fun and potentially money making ideas like the adult tricycle.

    I think I know how you found your educational niche on poker, since you are a player and your team came up with something that already existed (online poker training) with some improvement to it (just like Google came up with improvements to online searching). Now how in this world will someone come up with those tricycles. Are they rad tricyclers? Probably not, right? Well, I guess all that comment is a way to suggest a post on practicing creativity. I did study the process of creativity on College and it was nice, but I saw no studies done with people who excel on making money, only with researchers and theorycists (sorry, I don’t know the correct word for what I meant), reflecting College’s own interest to expand.

    Thanks for your great posts, Billy, good night.

    • Billy

      Hey Victor, thanks for the great comment.

      SEBRAE sounds interesting. Never heard of it before.

      I’ve gotten the question on how to pick a niche a lot recently. I have something coming up in the near future that will help with that.

      Regarding how my friend Mike came up with the adult trikes idea— if I remember correctly I think that he used one somewhere, liked it, and wanted to buy them. It was difficult to buy something he liked. So, he looked into having them built. Decided to sell them, and slowly but surely it turned into a real business.

      Yes, it’s easiest to start businesses in niches you know— but basically anytime you hear someone with a need, there may be an opportunity. I may write on creative thinking and/or more on due diligence into niches in the near future.

  13. Brandon Davis

    Hey Billy,

    Take all that dough and cash it in for coins. Then throw it all up in the air and make it hail! #ballin #popcornplaya


  14. Andy

    Hey Billy, I respect what you right and always look forward to these posts but thinks its a big mistake to shift your posts away from facebook. You said you are seeing less and less traffic come from their but it is still your 2nd biggest source. They may be limiting the potential of traffic from there, but they still provide a huge amount of your new subscribers and help you reach and audience outside your mailing list. While the effectiveness may be decreasing, it doesn’t cost you anything to stay there, so I think its a huge mistake to move your daily content away.

    • Billy

      I’ll still be linking to ForeverJobless, I’ll just be directing them to the image on the site, rather than keeping them on Facebook.

  15. Romain

    I would be in favor of you NOT becoming a full-time blogger; we’ve got enough of those already ^^

    Your unique value Billy is that you have some interesting businesses as a main activity (if I remember correctly, I discovered your blog through an awesome interview you did on Mixergy about BlueFirePoker), so when you share a post once a month or so, we know it’s going to be valuable and thorough advice, based on a REAL business.

    • Billy

      Romain, just to clarify I wouldn’t start putting out content similar to what other bloggers put out, I’d put out the same content as I’ve been putting out, just more of it. Also, if I did it, it’d only be for 30 days max, as a case study.

      Glad you’re getting value from my posts, thanks!

  16. Jess

    Hi Billy,

    I laughed out loud (just like David) when I read “You’re reading a blogger’s blog disguised as an entrepreneurial blog…” So true! Glad to have found an exception and a blog that actually provides value.

    Last year I started my very first e-commerce site and left my job as a result. Feels amazing! Would love to hear more about the strategies you use and issues you faced when scaling your stores. Sometimes you can feel like you’re drowning in a cesspool of BS advice, as you mentioned, from people who don’t know what they’re talking about. From what you’ve written, I feel like you’re someone worth listening to.

  17. Toby

    Wow Billy,

    good to have back. Great content this year.

    I´m starting my business-adventure over here in Germany next month so i really enjoy your insights and experience.

    I wonder how you create your fantastic images? I love the stickman but also the green ones, i.e. in the “cash cow”-post. Would be really helpful if you advice good software.

    Thank you very much and keep it up!

  18. cdmedia

    Thanks for the post! I have to keep reinforcing that notion that value is the key to success not chasing money. It’s been smashed into our brains by all the gurus out there sometimes it’s easy to forget.

    Buy a snickers bar!

  19. Jacob

    I want to see a new post! I made the mistake of putting your website on my favorites bar, and every day I check to see if there is a new update and I am left disappointed!


  20. Victor E. A. Silva

    Come back, Billy!

  21. chris

    Honestly i dont like people who try to teach you how to blog how to do seo and all this junk. Pat flynn while he does well i dont see real value and anyone who markets spam just ticks me off. What you say about picking a niche and making it as bad ass as possible is the truth. I just hope you dont sell out by creating a product to teach others how to blog. Every niche is different it cant be taught it must be learned. As for facebook well paid posts work really well but if you dont monotize your basically throwing money away.


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