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
Traffic screenshot from February:
January 31st: 1,803
February 28th: 2,001
February subscriber growth: +198 subscribers
I made 2 blog posts in February:
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:
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?
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. 🙂