March 2020 Income At-A-Glance
Gross Income for Mar: $220,439
Total Expenses for Mar: $41,962
Total Net Profit for Mar: $178,477
Difference b/t Mar & Feb: +$57,617
% of net profit to overall gross revenue: 81%
Why We Publish An Income Report
This monthly income report is created for you, Fire Nation!
By documenting the struggles we encounter and the successes we celebrate as entrepreneurs every single month, we’re able to provide you with support – and a single resource – where we share what’s working, what’s not, and what’s possible.
There’s a lot of hard work that goes into learning and growing as an entrepreneur, especially when you’re just starting out. The most important part of the equation is that you’re able to pass on what you learn to others through teaching, which is what we aim to do here.
**We’ll receive a commission on the affiliate links below. If you click on my affiliate link and sign up for the products and services I trust and recommend, then I will earn a commission.
Josh Bauerle’s Monthly Tax Tip
What’s up Fire Nation, my name is Josh Bauerle. I’m a CPA and the Founder of CPA On Fire, where we specialize in working with entrepreneurs to minimize their tax liability while keeping them in line with the ever-changing tax laws.
I’ve been working with JLD & Kate at Entrepreneurs On Fire for years now, and they’ve included me in these monthly income reports with unlimited access to all their accounts so I can verify that what they report here is complete and accurate.
And because they believe in delivering an insane amount of value to you, my job doesn’t stop at the verification level; I also provide a new tax and accounting tip every month!
Josh’s March Tax Tip: 3 Tips to Make Sure Your Business Survives Covid-19
This is an income report tip I never imagined having to give.
Never in my wildest, worst case scenario visions did I picture a global pandemic causing a nearly complete global economic shutdown.
But here we are, and I know a lot of you are probably worried about what this will all mean for your business and how you will survive.
Here are my 3 best tips to make sure your business survives Covid-19.
1. Don’t Panic
Yes, I know, this is easier said than done. Some of you have literally been forced to close the doors to your business.
Others have remained open, but have seen a significant drop in sales.
Regardless of how you have been impacted, panicking won’t help.
Instead, use this moment to make sure you are exploring every possible way to survive this crisis, like:
- Reading what successful businesses are doing to make it work during this time.
- Figuring out how to best move forward given your personal situation.
- Not spending too much time buried in all the bad news.
- Feeding your mind with positive and forward-thinking ideas is more important now than ever.
- NOT panicking!
2. Know What Type of Help You are Entitled to, and Pursue it Relentlessly
The US Federal government recently signed a $2 trillion economic stimulus package that offers tremendous help to entrepreneurs.
First, it sends out stimulus money of at least $1,200 for those who qualify (basically if you are single you need your AGI to be under $99,000 and if married under $198,000).
Those should start hitting in the next two weeks.
They also changed unemployment to include self employed people.
If you have seen your income take a hit from this crisis, then you may be eligible for unemployment benefits, PLUS the federal government is going to give you an additional $600 per week on top of the state unemployment paid out.
Finally, and most importantly for many businesses owners, the SBA created two programs to keep cash coming in.
The first is called the Economic Injury Disaster Loan.
This is a loan for up to $2M at very favorable rates and terms. Best of all the first $10,000 of it will be considered a grant and not have to be paid back.
I would highly recommend pursuing this loan if you need cash in your business to weather this storm.
Second, they created the Payroll Protection Program.
This is so businesses are able to continue paying their employees and themselves.
We created a video walking people through the program to help.
Since releasing this video they have decided not to include contractor costs in the program, but this still could allow you to obtain a significant amount of money that – if used correctly – never has to be paid back.
You have to apply for this through a bank, so you need to talk with your banker ASAP to get it done.
Both of these programs have a limited amount of funds available. You need to act NOW to get them.
And you need to pursue them relentlessly.
If your banker drags their feet, find a new bank. There is a lot of help out there, but it won’t be easy to get.
It is on you to figure out what you can get and how to get it.
3. Begin Rethinking Your Business
As with all major economic collapses, the economy will forever be changed by this event.
So you need to be thinking very carefully about how you can not only continue to do business in our current conditions, but how your business will function in the new economy that emerges when this is all over.
We were already turning into a “remote” economy, but this crisis has made that more true than we could ever have imagined.
Very soon, as stimulus money and unemployment benefits start to get into peoples hands, they will have discretionary income to spend with very limited options for spending it.
You need to think about how you can give people the products or services they need and want during a long-term shelter in place order, and can be purchased from the comfort of their home.
Those who do this stand to make a lot of money.
Things are bad right now.
Unfortunately, there’s a good chance they will get worse before they get better.
But remember, they WILL get better.
It’s up to you, as an entrepreneur, to figure out what needs done and how to do it.
It’s not fair what’s happening, but there’s not a lot of time to worry about that. Work and innovate like you have never done before.
As the great movie Moneyball says, adapt or die.
You can weather this storm, but you need to take control and make it happen!
As always, please feel free to contact me if you’d like to discuss what would be best for YOUR business. I LOVE chatting with Fire Nation!
David Lizerbram’s March Legal Tip: Contracts Under Coronavirus
As we’re writing and recording this income report, the world is dealing with the coronavirus pandemic. Businesses of every size and type are being affected.
As a result, many business owners are looking carefully at the “boilerplate” terms in the back of their contracts. This includes everything from office leases to contracts between businesses. Many, if not most, contracts exclude one or both parties from certain obligations under what’s often called a force majeure clause.
Sometimes this goes by other terms, such as “Act of God”.
In addition, many U.S. states have incorporated force majeure into their legal codes, so it may apply even if it doesn’t appear in the written contract.
So how does force majeure work?
The basic principle is that you should not be responsible for something that’s out of your control. So, following that, if the pandemic has caused you to be unable to perform on an obligation, you may be excused from that obligation under this legal
For example, if your state has imposed a lockdown and prevented your business from remaining open, that may trigger force majeure. Likewise if you or someone you are taking care of has become ill with the virus and that’s caused you to be unable to work.
Please note that force majeure does not mean that, due to the pandemic, every legal obligation is forgiven or that every contract is now void. If you are still able to deliver on the contract – for example, if you can work from home – force majeure will not excuse you from your obligations.
The force majeure doctrine is a complicated and nuanced part of the law, and it’s about to be tested as it never has been before. So don’t just assume that you can rely on this doctrine to excuse you from a legal obligation like paying rent or delivering goods or services.
Definitely consult an attorney to see if you may be excused from a contractual obligation, and if so, what the scope of that excuse might be.
If you have questions about how your business can navigate this unprecedented challenge, please feel free to contact me.
What Went Down In March
Knowledge Broker Blueprint Launch: Ouch!
We set out in September 2019 to do a few things we’ve never done before:
- Team up with another business to promote an affiliate launch
- Spend over $100,000 on ads (well, that was our original plan… we actually ended up spending over $200,000)
- Create a promo video series and host a challenge as a lead-up to the launch
- Give this launch 110% and go ALL OUT
And come February 2020 – over 5 months later – we did all of that for the Knowledge Broker Blueprint launch.
We feel great about the way we showed up for this launch, for our audience, and for each other.
But to be brutally honest, we don’t feel great about the ROI.
Every business owner “fails” along the way
There are a lot of projects and things we’ve tested here at Entrepreneurs On Fire that haven’t worked out the way we had hoped, and we’ve shared every one of them with you here in our monthly income reports.
Taking a look back, things like:
- The Fire Path Course
…these are just a few of the “failed launches” we’ve had over the years.
But the biggest difference between the Knowledge Broker Blueprint launch and these other failed launches is this:
We had full control to pull the plug on the others before dedicating a significant amount of our bandwidth and resources to them.
Was this launch a total loss?
While we can’t call our involvement in the launch a total loss, it is the worst net profit generating thing we’ve ever done in our business.
So we’re considering it high impact, low ROI at this point.
High impact because we were able to:
- learn so many lessons,
- serve those who joined us in our 5-day Challenge at a level we typically charge tens of thousands of dollars for, AND
- help 250 individuals join a program that will change their lives if implemented (huge!)
And low ROI because of the months of high-intensity focus and bandwidth we dedicated only to… hopefully net 23% of our average monthly net revenue – TOTAL.
The high impact part is amazing. We love putting our energy and effort towards things that will make a big impact for you, Fire Nation! That’s why we started Entrepreneurs On Fire.
But the most important lesson here is that you can’t give all of your bandwidth and resources away to business activities that don’t net a return that directly impacts your ability to stay in business. That’s never been truer than right now.
If you were involve yourself in activities like this consistently, you wouldn’t have a business.
So what the heck happened?
For starters, we invested HEAVY up front.
For 3 months straight – from December until the end of February – we were 100% all hands on deck with the pre-launch for Knowledge Broker Blueprint.
And it wasn’t just the 4 of us.
We also hired a Messenger Bots expert and a copywriter for the project, plus our virtual staff was involved in the administrative operations throughout.
So what did “all hands on deck” look like?
Some quick stats:
- Over 400 tasks in our Asana project
- More than 20 team meetings
- Over 30 FB Lives for our challenge
- Filmed for more than 40 hours
We decided we were going to create a video series to run for our Facebook Ads, host a 5-day challenge inside of a private popup Facebook group, and go big when it came to omnipresence (essentially, being present everywhere).
While we’re incredibly lucky to have a business that can handle us fully focusing on an “outside project” like this for an extended period of time, we typically only do that with the knowledge that the ROI will be there.
And that’s the risk we took: we invested heavy up front with certainty the ROI would be there.
Unfortunately, our early indicators that everything was going great were only being shown to us by number of leads. And since we had a high number of leads, we continued to push.
We continued to ramp up our efforts to be omnipresent with:
- Facebook ads
- Instagram stories
- Push notifications
- Messenger bots
- Email sequences
- Blog posts
- Podcast episodes
- Voice messages
- Text messages
- Sponsored messages
- Video reviews
- One-to-one outreach
…we even sent out physical postcards in the mail!
We literally did everything we know how to do – in addition to a lot of stuff we had no clue about.
And if we would have put all of our focus into fewer things, perhaps the results may have different. If we would have made fewer last-minute pivots and shifts, perhaps the results may have been different.
However, we know that’s a dangerous game to play. We said we were going all-in, and we did.
When people pay, they pay attention.
But one of our last-minute pivots actually turned out to net us our biggest win: pivoting from a free challenge to a paid one.
We had seen a paid challenge work incredibly well for others in our space.
So we figured “why can’t it work for this?”
But it wasn’t about the money.
In fact, given what we spent on ads for the challenge, we actually lost money on the challenge itself.
However, what we were able to accomplish was automatically making sure those who joined were serious about actually participating.
We were also able to use this process as pre-qualification – those who joined the challenge were now buyers, and all this leading up to the Knowledge Broker Blueprint launch.
The 5-day challenge, which we called Think Like an Expert and charged $37 for, is an experience in our business we’ll never forget.
The impact, level of engagement, and sincerity of those who showed up to make a change was nothing short of incredible.
The connections we were able to grow, the limiting beliefs we were able to help individuals overcome, and the clarity people had coming out of the challenge was really beautiful.
These leads were our strongest from start to finish. So while the challenge itself was cash flow negative, our challenge leads gave us our highest sales conversion rate into Knowledge Broker Blueprint: 12%.
But in addition to the challenge we were bringing leads in from a lot of different places.
And while again, our challenge group was HOT and filled with incredibly qualified leads, the majority of those we were sending to the Knowledge Broker Blueprint Livestream were not qualified.
Our overall Facebook leads sales conversions into Knowledge Broker Blueprint was less than 0.5%.
Leads don’t equal sales
But because we had never gone “all-in” on Facebook Ads before, and push notifications, and Messenger bots, and Instagram stories, and text messages… we pushed it.
We had ads that were converting, and several experts in the space who were impressed by our CPC and CPL.
We had great conversions on our Messenger series, and a lot of people who were happy to provide their phone number for text message updates.
But when push comes to shove, your overall number of leads means nothing if they aren’t good leads.
Within 24 hours of cart open we hadn’t even reached 10% of our overall sales goal.
This was a complete shock to us, especially because we whole-heartedly feel that Knowledge Broker Blueprint is an incredible course and training.
We’ve been through it multiple times, this is our 2nd year promoting the course, and we consider Dean Graziosi and Tony Robbins our own personal online mentors.
- Was it the messaging?
- Was it the offer?
- Was it our leads?
To answer the overall question “What the heck happened?” … well, that’s difficult to do.
We could definitely go down a rabbit hole and make guesses, but that helps no one.
Instead, we choose to learn from our mistakes, share our lessons learned, and get ready for the next challenge that comes our way.
Want more? We’re working on a deep dive post into lessons, stats, and the final results of our Knowledge Broker Blueprint launch right now, and we hope to have it published soon!
A lot has changed in the past several weeks, and it’s hard to believe that just a month ago everything was “business as usual”.
There have been loads of lessons learned and new experiences from this world-wide pandemic, and we hope us sharing those here today will help you on your journey.
- This, too, shall pass
- Practice gratitude
- It’s time to rise
- Ask yourself the right questions
- Pause, reflect, & reset
Our thoughts are with you and your families during this time. We hope you’re safe and staying healthy.
Product/Service Income: $201,530
TOTAL Journal sales: 256 Journals for a total of $7,981
The Freedom Journal: Accomplish your #1 goal in 100 days!
- TheFreedomJournal.com: $369 (6 Hardcovers & 3 Digital Pack)
- Amazon: $1,684 (73 Freedom Journals sold!)
- Total: $2,053
The Mastery Journal: Master Productivity, Discipline and Focus in 100 days!
- TheMasteryJournal.com: $43 (1 Hardcovers & 0 Digital Packs)
- Amazon: $994 (43 Mastery Journals sold!)
- Total: $1,037
The Podcast Journal: Idea to Launch in 50 Days!
- ThePodcastJournal.com: $53 (1 Hardcovers & 0 Digital Pack)
- Amazon: $4,838 (129 Podcast Journals sold!)
- Total: $4,891
Podcasters’ Paradise: The #1 Podcasting community in the world!
- Recurring: $16,571 (175 recurring)
- New members: $5,346 (18 new members)
- Total: $21,917
Real Revenue: Turn your BIG IDEA into Real Revenue
- New members: $525
The Revenue Crew: An Elite Mastermind ON FIRE!
- Currently closed to new members
Free Courses that contribute to the above revenue:
Your Big Idea: Discover your big idea in under an hour!
Free Podcast Course: Create and launch your own podcast!
Funnel On Fire: Create a funnel that converts!
Affiliate Income: $18,909
*Affiliate links below – if you click on my affiliate link and sign up for the products and services I trust and recommend, then I will earn a commission.
Resources for Entrepreneurs: $10,244
- Audible: $90
- BlueHost: $165 Step-by-step guide and 23 WordPress tutorials included! Disclaimer: This is my affiliate link and I will receive a commission if you sign up through my link
- Click Funnels: $8,513
- Coaching referrals: $1,150 (email me for an introduction to a mentor for overall online business or a Podcast focused mentor!)
- ConvertKit: $59
- Disclaimer Template: $0 (legal disclaimers for your website)
- Fizzle Mastermind: $267
- Virtual Staff Finder: $0
Courses for Entrepreneurs: $6,108
- Knowledge Business Blueprint by Tony Robbins: $4,962
- Create Awesome Online Courses by DSG: $679
- Rick Mulready’s Facebook Marketing Course: $133
- Amy Porterfield’s Digital Course Academy: $334
Resources for Podcasters: $2,027
- Pat Flynn’s Fusebox Podcast Player: $18
- Podcasting Press: $618
- Designrr: $0
- Splasheo: $297
- Tim Paige’s Make My Intro: $0
- Libsyn: $1,000 (Use promo code FIRE for the rest of this month & next free!)
- UDemy Podcasting Course: $94
Other Resources: $530
- Amazon Associates: $178
- Other: $352
Total Gross Income in Mar: $220,439
Business Expenses: $38,705
- Advertising: $0
- Affiliate Commissions (Paradise): $1,100
- Accounting: $961
- Cost of goods sold: $10,429 (Free Journal offer for Fire Nation in March)
- Fulfillment (Shipwire): $10,374 (Free Journal offer for Fire Nation in March)
- Design & Branding: $0
- Dues & Subscriptions: $68
- Education: $137
- Legal & Professional: $237
- Meals & Entertainment: $397
- Merchant / bank fees: $1,824
- Amazon fees: $4,832
- PayPal fees: $198
- Shopify fees: $40
- Office expenses: $1,455
- Community Refunds: $1,385
- Promotional: $2,844
- Travel: $ -1,921
- Virtual Assistant Fees: $4,145
- Website Fees: $200
Recurring, Subscription-based Expenses: $3,257
- Adobe Creative Cloud: $100
- Boomerang: $50 (team package)
- Bonjoro: $45
- Authorize.net: $70
- Cell Phone: $213
- Direct Heros: $97
- Google Suite: $60
- Internet: $600
- eVoice: $10
- Infusionsoft CRM: $309
- Insurance: $648
- Libsyn: $245
- Linktree: $6
- TaxJar: $19
- Taxes & Licenses: $523
- OnceHub: $162 (annual fee)
- Zapier: $15
- Xero: $30
- Zoom: $55
Total Expenses in Mar: $41,962
Payroll to John & Kate: $15,900
Wondering what we do with all of our net revenue? We share all in our April 2017 Income Report :)
Total Net Profit for Mar 2020: $178,477
Biggest Lesson Learned
Talk about shaking things up… COVID-19 has had us indoors on lockdown since Monday, March 16. Puerto Rico was surprisingly ahead of the curve on this one; although much of that likely has to do with a poor infrastructure and our communities susceptibility to the virus.
In any case, we’re not letting any of it get us down.
Do we miss getting together with friends?
Do we wish we could take the trips we had planned?
Are we praying for those who have lost their jobs – and even family members?
Every single day.
But our current reality is what it is, and in a time like this, we turn to what we can control: our perspective.
There’s absolutely zero to downplay in our current situation. The magnitude of what is happening in our world is probably bigger than what many of us will see in our lifetime.
Still, your perspective is everything, because you can choose to focus on everything that is going wrong, or you can choose to focus on everything that is going right.
The opportunity available to us right now as online leaders is unprecedented. Many individuals are living in a world of chaos, questions, struggles, and unknowns.
Right now, you have the opportunity to be their light. You have the opportunity to be the constant.
So what can you do as an online leader during a time like this?
- Show up. Be the stability in someone’s life, because I can guarantee a lot of people need that right now
- Live in your space. This pause isn’t a mistake; start living, breathing, and experiencing the newfound space you have (space that might not be around for long).
- Look for new problems to solve. Many of us are finding ourselves in the red; canceled agreements, forfeiting deposits, and postponed events. There are more painful struggles out there right now than ever, and each is an opportunity for you to step up and create a solution for. Not in a greedy or sneaky way, but in a way of service.
Now is your time to shine.
Now is the time you stand taller than ever before, because the alternative is shrinking down, playing small, and making an unfortunate situation even worse.
Is everyone meant to rise right now?
The honest answer is no.
But the opportunity is there for those who feel pulled to step into it.
Regardless, there are certain realities right now that will not change for a while. So start owning the things you do have the ability to change, and not only will you be better for it – so will those around you.
Alright Fire Nation, that’s a wrap!
Until next month, keep your FIRE burning!
~ Kate & John
Note: we report our income figures as accurately as possible, but in using reports from a combo of Infusionsoft & Xero to track our product and total income / expenses, they suggest the possibility of a 3 – 5% margin of error.