It’s been so long since I’ve written a post!
In the time between the last post and this one, two MAJOR things happened:
- I had my BIGGEST month ever in my business…November’s Profit and Loss statement showed $160,000 in revenue (what the what?!) with $118,000 of it as profit. I couldn’t believe it. There are a bunch of reasons for that spike, but suffice it to say – it was NOT a normal month.
- I traveled to Boise to Clickfunnels Headquarters to hang out with Russell and work on trainings, curriculum, and planning for the year.
This photo below is a screenshot of a few training videos we shot together for Funnel Builder Secrets last week. The course should open back up in the next month or so (those in the program will see new modules dripping out over the coming weeks).
So that’s all the cool stuff…but I’m sure you want to know the real things I’m feeling right? Not all the pretty highlight reel moments that make me look like a perfect human in a perfect life.
I’ve been in a MASSIVE struggle in my own head over the last month. There’s so much going on, and I’d love to try to articulate it for you, but….it’s probably going to be long.
Business changes RAPIDLY. Especially on the Internet. Sometimes I feel like I juuuusssttt get something sorted out, and then – Wabam! I have to change it up again. I take solace in knowing this is exactly what happens at Clickfunnels HQ too, so it’s not just me. It’s business.
If you don’t like mess, this WILL drive you crazy. But I’m finally giving into the reality that it just is part of the journey.
Right now I have several things people know me for: Create Your Laptop Life, CYLL Network, The Digital Gangsta, Digital Insiders, Pipe & Lime Media, Clickfunnels, and then there’s my name. And it’s left me feeling a tad bit schizophrenic. Where do I focus? After pages of scribbles notes and long car rides doing NOTHING but thinking…here are the things that are coming with me into 2018….
Create Your Laptop Life®
The name has morphed so much and taken on a life of its own, and because of that – I feel like it’s a living child who sometimes cooperates and sometimes does not. At one point this year, I thought maybe the name Create Your Laptop Life would become my company name rather than just a brand or course, but a partner who left sorta changed all that. I even had it trademarked! Of all the things I do, this brand is the one that can stand on its own without my face plastered all over it, which is cool. To that end, I’ve been slowly bringing other people into the mix – experts monthly, plus a lot of you have been hearing more from Jessie, who’s a talented Digital Marketer as well. What you’ll see more of in 2018: Create Your Laptop Life will be primarily focused on the CYLL Network – the premier membership community that supports those living their Laptop Life. This is without a doubt the most economical way to get coaching from me…period.
The Digital Gangsta
This course launched in May 2017, and BLEW UP! We’ve had 100’s of people sign up, which is so cool! What’s been hard about this program though? The double avatar. The price point. Here’s what I mean: The Digital Gangsta is really for TWO types of people – those who want to become Digital Marketers, or those who need a Digital Marketer in their business. It’s been a struggle to dial in the webinar for this because of that, and because of the price point. It sold like hotcakes at $997. It’s been progressively harder to sell it at its new price point – $1997. People don’t get it until they are in it and then it’s like WOOOAHHH. The thing is – it’s worth triple that. I’ve been on the fence about going to a sales team and application for TDG, in part because of the price point, and also because I don’t want everyone and their mother just buying it. It’s taken too much work and effort for it to collect dust, be hacked, ignored, etc. It’s one of (if not THE most) comprehensive Digital Marketing curriculum on the Internet right now. What you’ll see more of in 2018: Expect that this program may not be just have a simple BUY NOW button forever, and there will be a big overhaul to the Facebook Ads portion of the program, as well as some new workshops added as the landscape changes. I may also go to an open/close cart option as well. We’ll see.
This is where the biggest changes have happened this year. My previous role with Clickfunnels was basically – super affiliate. I ran an affiliate group for anyone who purchased Clickfunnels under my link – which right now has 5-6 workshops (amazing training by the way) inside it. You can get it all for free if you’re under my link. As of December 1, 2017, I became an official member of the Clickfunnels family, working directly with Russell on curriculum, content, coaching, and as Russell’s main writer. I’m not going to lie, it’s been NUTS. Nuts because I’ve had a lot of people ask me, “Why if you’re making so much money, would you give so much of your time to another empire?”
It’s a great question that I grappled with for about two months during negotiations. I don’t need to work for anyone. I don’t even hardly need to work for myself if I wanted to auto-pilot more of my stuff. So why would I do this?
Russell Brunson has been able to unlock potential in me that no one else has. No teacher or boss or pastor or college education or well-meaning advice has done what Russell’s mentorship and teaching has done for me. For as long as my marketing career will last, I want to work with the best. It’s more important to me to be a valuable player on a REALLY big mission than to be emperor of my own domain just to say, “Hey look, nobody tells me what to do”. Or put another way, I’d rather be a small fish in a huge ocean than a big fish in a small pond. I will go further and be better and reach more people if I pool resources and brainpower than if I simply operate as a lone ranger.
It’s not without its anxiety for sure. I’m nervous to be representing someone so huge in the marketing world. I’m nervous about how to use my voice for both me and him. I’m still feeling gun-shy around my marketing hero. I wonder if my role at CF will help or hurt my business. Everything in life is a risk right? So far, every risk I’ve taken with Russell has paid off a million times over. I have no doubts it will continue this way.
What You’ll See More of in 2018: I’ll be one of the head coaches in Russell’s new program (launching this spring), you’ll be hearing from me LOTS on the Clickfunnels blog and on other podcasts (both Clickfunnels sponsored and otherwise), and you’ll be seeing me in the Funnel Builder Secrets and Ignite Your Funnel programs. And of course, I will still be promoting CF as a super affiliate and give free access to training and bonuses for those who join with my link!
I don’t think I’ve been so excited about a program as much as this one. From inception to launch, everything about this has been exactly what I want, and nothing I don’t. It’s the first time I’ve built something completely and simply because I want to, and how I want it, without worry of if it will sell or how to position it, etc. The 40 people inside are incredible and I’m looking forward to an incredible 2018 with a select few people who I can really help at the level I want to! If you want access to me, this is the program, and it’s limited to 50 people TOTAL.
What You’ll See More of in 2018: This program is by application only, and will be available on a case by case basis. It includes two live events per year, unlimited Voxer access to me, my trainings, as well as support in tech and mindset and other important areas of business.
What I’ve done that HASN’T worked
So much of this business is trial and error…and not everything I’ve done has worked out how I thought it might.
- Thinking I could bust into e-commerce simply (hahahahahah) – The planners I created are AMAZING, but aren’t selling the way I thought they might
- Running a 1:1 coaching program at a price point way too low (and then getting so busy I couldn’t do anything other than sit on Zoom all day long)
- The Course Creator’s Program we launched was super cool because some amazing courses came out of it, but I underestimated the work it would be to keep it ongoing. We won’t be opening it up again to new creators to build courses, but we will be selling the ones that are there now because there’s a lot of great training!
- Pod groups in CYLL Network. It was a great idea, but a huge resource hog to manage on the shoulders of volunteers
- The Create Your Laptop Life YouTube Channel and Instagram handle I sunk a LOT of money into, but haven’t seen the return I wanted. Like to the tune of $12,000 and counting
- Creating JV programs that I could not sustain – in an attempt to be “nice” I overextended myself multiple times, and found myself “giving away the farm”
- Giving up my personal brand (my name) in the emotional high of a partnership…this wasn’t smart.
…and I’m sure there are PLENTY more.
I guess that’s the point. If you want to make money and really scale, you also have to be prepared for major mistakes. Costly mistakes. I’ve spent at least $50,000 or more this year on things that flopped.
It’s not been all sunshine and roses!
New things coming…
I don’t have a ton of new stuff coming this year because…
1. I have enough stuff out there now!
2. My role with Russell (and there’s LOTS coming on that side of things)
…but here are a few things you can expect…
- A new website and personal blog at Juliestoian.com! This should be launching in early January and be a central hub for all the things I’m doing!
- A FB Live show. This will start dropping in January. It’s short 5-7 minute episodes on all things business and marketing. Totally free 🙂
- A brand new webinar called – The Three Secrets to Closing 90% of Your Leads with Proposals They Pay For. The first launch of it will be on January 4th at 8pm EST, and will dive into the proposal secrets that I used in my agency that yielded massive returns.
When I look back over 2017, I remember in January thinking “How am I going to top 2016?” I looked at my P&L sheet and couldn’t believe I’d made $325,000 dollars in one year. The year prior (2015) was just $70,000. That was like a 300% increase. I was scared. I thought I wouldn’t be able to match it.
Well guess what?
I’m going to end the year around $1.3 million and I’m feeling MORE scared. This time I’m SURE I can’t keep up this pace, and to be fair, I don’t think anyone would blame me if I couldn’t. I’ve been working HARD.
The thing nobody realizes is that with more money comes more expenses, more responsibility, and more heartbreak if things don’t work. When it’s just me it’s one thing. It’s not just me anymore. Facing fear is something you do NOW and always…rather than waiting for some outside thing to cure it. More money doesn’t solve any fear-based issues. Trust me. It does NOT.
I’ve tried REALLY hard to keep my living expenses the same, even though my income has gone up. We did buy a house finally, which upped our rent of $1650 a month to a $2000 mortgage. We also bought a car (that Clickfunnels is paying for). And..I finally succumbed to a nanny and housekeeper. Living wise, we’re doing well not outspending the increase in pay, but our monthly budget has gone from $6k a month to $8k. So much of that is health insurance, it’s disgusting. On the business side, it’s always a dance. How much to reinvest? What profit margin is good? How do you average out the crazy insane months (like November) and save for a rainy day when ad accounts go down or things stop working the way you expected them to?
Scaling is hard. The end. LOL
2018 is going to be the year I do what I love. It’s no longer about fighting to get my kids back, it’s no longer about buying a home or a car, it’s about settling into my zone of genius, doing the things I really WANT to do, and running towards something…rather than away.