January 2014 Income At-A-Glance
Gross Income for January: $158,931
Total Expenses for January: $20,324.69
Total Net Profit for January: $138,606.31
Difference b/t Jan. & Dec.: + $37,099.46
What’s This Monthly Income Report All About?
We’re glad you asked!
John and I believe there needs to be more transparency in the online business world, and by sharing our monthly income reports with you every month – in detail – we’re able to give you a tour behind the scenes of what it’s really like to run a business.
We promise not to focus on the pretty, fluffy part that most people tend to hone in on from the outside. Instead, we’ll dive right into the raw struggles and failures we encounter each month so that you can learn something from our mistakes, and we’ll also include our wins so that you know it’s possible (and how it’s possible).
We really want you to feel what we experience day-to-day, week-by-week, month-after-month, and our goal is to make your journey as unobstructed as possible.
That’s not to say you won’t encounter roadblocks. Believe us – we know that no one can escape those no matter how much reading or studying you do. Just remember that every roadblock is a building block towards future success. When you learn something on your own – the hard way – it’s much easier to truly improve from that mis-step.
In summation, our monthly income report is all about helping you navigate your entrepreneurial journey in a more efficient and effective way.
Who Are We To Say?
Another great question.
If you don’t know about our journey yet, then I’ll give you a really quick overview. Rest assured we’ve been through a lot, and the lessons we talk about in these reports are no joke (no, seriously – this stuff really happens!)
John started EntrepreneurOnFire much in the same way any other entrepreneur starts out: with nothing. No online presence, no podcasting experience and no prior “connections”.
He also started EntrepreneurOnFire with a clean slate: no 9-5 job, no kids. This allowed him to really focus in on his goals and what he envisioned for the podcast. Ever hear John talk about F.O.C.U.S. (Follow One Course Until Success)? That’s just what he did for three straight months before he launched, and it’s what he’s been doing ever since.
What’s the moral of this short story?
John started a business podcast from scratch. He didn’t have a template or the prior knowledge of what it was going to take in order to succeed. Instead, he believed in his passion and used his drive to create a business that is currently making 6-figures a month. We were also just named “Best in iTunes 2013”, and surpassed over 480,000 downloads in January alone – both amazing accomplishments for us.
So if you’re reading this and thinking that we were able to build EntrepreneurOnFire to what it is today because we have some magical hand up on the rest of the world, that’s not the case. We even prove it in our post that covers our first 365 days in business.
Bottom line, we’ve worked hard to learn and grow as business owners, and we couldn’t be more excited to share it all with you.
What Went Down In January
New Media Expo, Las Vegas
We started January off with a huge bang: New Media Expo was a huge hit – a conference I know I’ll never forget.
This year was my first time attending, and I was blown away by the endless amount of inspiring conversations and speakers and also by the pure energy and excitement that seemed to fill every single room I was in.
John spoke 3 times, we threw 2 Fire Nation hangouts and we really took in all Vegas had to offer!
I won’t go into too much detail here because I wrote a pretty massive post about my NMX experience that you can check out if you’d like, but one thing not to miss is the Pat Flynn vs JLD dance off filmed by Amy Porterfield…let us know who won in the comments!
While NMX definitely started 2014 off with a bang, I did get crushed by the flu just in time to go home, which put me in bed for 3 days straight…
Challenge #1 in January: keeping up with work while at a 3-day conference.
Challenge #2 in January: trying to catch up after the conference (and stay caught up) while in bed with the flu.
Good thing John and I have each other to keep things in order :)
An Unexpected Trip
January not only brought us some business-related challenges, but it also brought us some personal challenges.
In early January, my grandfather passed away with my mother, aunt and uncle at his side. Then, in mid-January, John and I spent a week in Maine to say good-bye to his grandmother, who passed while we were there. And just one week after that, my other grandfather passed away.
While each of their passings weren’t completely unexpected, there really isn’t ever a good time to say goodbye. However, we both feel blessed to have been as close to our grandparents as we were our entire lives and also to know they are in a much better place without any pain or suffering now.
We sent out an email last week to our subscribers about what we do when things start to get out of control. The email included some thoughts John and I have both felt over and over again in January, including the need to accept that we don’t have control over everything.
Finding comfort in deciding how you will handle situations when you’re uncomfortable, scared and lacking control is an important mindset to adopt and own. Otherwise, whether it be in your business or in your personal life, you’ll find yourself playing a game you cannot win.
Podcasters’ Paradise continues to grow at an really exciting rate.
Today, we sit at over 525 members and $250,000 in revenue since our October 31st launch! I can’t tell you how much fun John and I are having creating content for Paradise and holding our monthly Webinars and live Q&A’s. It’s so much fun to be a part of a community who really inspires each other daily, and who are all in it for the greater good of everyone around them.
If you’d like to learn more about Podcasters’ Paradise, sign up for our next live Webinar – we’d love to have you join us!
During the Webinar John discusses in detail the explosion podcasting is experiencing and why this is such an exciting time to start a podcast. He also reviews the entire podcasting workflow so you can see it in action, and he unveils two massively underutilized podcast hacks for: 1) ranking in iTunes and 2) appearing in not just 1 – but 3 – categories in iTunes. You won’t want to miss this!
We also spent a good amount of time in January making some big decisions for the business. One such thing was looking into a new payment software called Gumroad.
Currently, we’re using Authorize.net for our merchant account, which we’re able to link up to our order forms in Infusionsoft to process payments (via CyberSource). While Authorize.net, CyberSource and Infusionsoft are all great systems, we found a couple of hiccups on both ends of the order form/payment system setup as we began to process more and more transactions:
1. Most importantly, Infusionsoft’s order forms aren’t mobile friendly (pretty hard to believe that a powerhouse like Infusionsoft doesn’t have this covered, but it’s true).
We realize the importance of making everything we offer to our audience as easy to use as possible. When we started finding out from people that they weren’t able to purchase our products via their mobile devices, we knew we had to do something about it.
2. After creating two separate products (Fire Nation Elite and Podcasters’ Paradise) we realized that the deposits being made into our business bank account from CyberSource weren’t labeled or easily identifiable. For example, if we had a deposit for $3,450, CyberSource would label it as a deposit without referencing whether those funds were for a Fire Nation Elite membership or a Podcasters’ Paradise membership.
Not being able to differentiate the payments as they come through to our account has added an extra step in the process for us, and it makes our bookkeeping much for difficult than it needs to be.
With Gumroad, both of these issues will be resolved – whew! We’re really excited about the move over, which will hopefully be taking place by the end of February.
Private Facebook Group – yay, or nay?
January also brought on some conversations about whether or not a Private Facebook group is in order for Podcasters’ Paradise. While we love our Forum and continue to see that several members are taking full advantage of the connections they’re able to make within every day, we also want there to be a platform where they can go for instant feedback and answers to their questions.
Because everyone is already on Facebook anyway, we figure this might be a more highly trafficked place for many members. We haven’t opened the group just yet, but we will look forward to diving into that in February as well.
Our VA Search
After posting for a Virtual Assistant twice on Odesk and coming up short both times, I decided to go where I knew I should have gone in the first place: Virtual Staff Finder. I heard that they recently switched to only offering General Virtual Assistants (GVA’s), which is why I hesitated and went to Odesk at first. What I was looking for in a VA, I didn’t think I could find in a GVA.
But after much thought, I decided that knowing I would come out of Virtual Staff Finder with 3 amazing candidates to choose from was well worth it. It was time to stop focusing on what happened with Odesk, cut my losses, and move on to something I knew would work.
While I feel as though I wasted a lot of time and energy on my Odesk postings (creating the job description and holding interviews with candidates both times), I now know that finding someone on Odesk just wasn’t meant to be.
I’m waiting for the 3 candidates that VSF has selected for me, and I cannot wait until we can welcome another team member on board at EntrepreneurOnFire!
Ready for the bare bones?
Fire Nation Elite Mastermind: $16,060
Sponsorship Income: $39,120
Podcast Launch (eBook on Amazon): $469
Podcast Launch (Audiobook on Audible): $173
Podcasters’ Paradise (invoice total): $92,434
1-on-1 Mentoring: $6,000
Affiliate Income (affiliate links below)
- BlueHost: $1,500
- Amazon: $475
- Studio 1 Design (website designer): $400
- DU Publishing: $2,000
- Podcasting A to Z: $300 (offer code dumas for $150 off)
Total Gross Income in January: $158,931
- Taxes & Licenses (for our LLC): $71.46
- Website Fees (includes new domains, ongoing web support): $220
- Virtual Assistant Fees (includes outsourced projects): $865
- Affiliate Commissions (paid out to Paradise Affiliates): $544
- Education: $2,079
- Entertainment: $107
- Advertising: $2,199
- Design & Branding: $495
- LibSyn: $100
- Travel: $4,271
- Other Business Expenses: $2,600
- TheMidRoll (Sponsorships): $4,000
- Authorize.net*: $91.10
- ScheduleOnce*: $42.19
- Insurance*: $172.01
- Mentor*: $2,000
- Quickbooks Online*: $25
- Infusionsoft CRM*: $209
- Cell Phone*: $171
- eVoice*: $9.95
- Skype*: $2.99
- Adobe Creative Cloud*: $49.99
*Indicates a recurring, subscription-based payment
Total Expenses in January: $20,324.69
Total Net Profit for January 2014: $138,606.31
Things We Learned In January
While John and I both have a pretty good idea of how many hours we work in a given day (and therefore how many hours we work in a given week), we decided that for the month of January, and for each month thereafter, we were both going to use the RescueTime app on our computers to accurately track our time.
Ready to hear it?… During the month of January:
John put in 235 hours, for an average of 58.75 hours per week.
I put in 204 hours, for an average of 51 hours per week.
Because we were in Las Vegas for 6 days at the beginning of the month and Maine for 8 days towards the middle, our breakdown of time spent on specific tasks is a little out of whack. In February, we’ll be doing a more in-depth breakdown on what time was spent where.
Talking about it doesn’t make it a reality
It’s a great start, but just talking about what you want to accomplish isn’t going to get you there – believe me, I experienced this several times in January.
You know those tasks we tend to put off because they aren’t our favorite? At the end of the day, we all have responsibilities, and thinking or talking about how much you hate those responsibilities isn’t going to get them accomplished.
Until you’re ready to draw out a plan that will take those responsibilities off from your plate and put them onto someone else’s who is capable and prepared to execute them, they are still your responsibilities.
No one is going to create the life you want for you
If you think that daydreaming about what you wish your life looked like is the only thing you can do, snap out of it! What if all that daydreaming could actually be something? What if all that daydreaming was actually your reality?
If you want it, then you have to be the one to create it. I’ve certainly learned over the past several months – and in January specifically – that no one else is going to create it for me. That’s why I’ve made it a priority to wake up each day declaring that I will create the best day possible for myself.
It’s not easy. I still have crummy days, trust me. But a simple shift in mindset can go a long way.
Alright Fire Nation, we hope you enjoyed January’s monthly income report, and as you read this good-bye, we hope you feel as though you’ve learned something or will be able to take something away from this post that will help you in your business in the coming weeks.
Until next month,
~ Kate & John
What information did you find most valuable in this post? What’s something we didn’t include here that you’d like to see in next month’s income report? Let us know in the comments section below!