Crashing And Burning The $100k Goal

Screen Shot 2014-11-10 at 14.59.42The $100k goal is a no go for December.

It’s disappointing because the t-shirt sales have not worked out anyway near as good as I would have hoped this week. I expected to hit $10,000 revenue easily this week. I made $3k rev, which is still a decent profit all things considered. So on a goal perspective it’s frustrating but looking at it in a different point of view, making £1000 profit in a week while taking two days off to help family move house is still amazing to me.

So what happened? Facebook is taking my money and not giving me what I am paying for. Also the lack of money is probably down to my inexperience of going BIG out of the gate. You gotta spend money to make money an all that.

I launched five new t-shirts this week. One t-shirt is not even allowed to run on Facebook because it contains the word bitchin’. I am guess Someone must have complained about the ad for it to get flagged. Another t-shirt was kind of a risk because it was a phrase with a double meaning. Part about the sport and part could be misconstrued as four-play. The hardcore passionate people seem to hate swearing on it’s own so this t-shirt didn’t fly well. Big mistake on my part for not taking the audience into consideration. The other three t-shirts all hit the niche avatar really well.

The biggest mistake on my part was my willingness to risk losing money. I spent a lot of money last month building four new Facebook pages. I also spent money on t-shirt designs. My focus as soon as I walked into November was to make big bux, get my investment back and then some. I never planned on spending more money, in fact I never really planned on what would happen trying to launch five big campaigns all at the same time.

Following this system, you have got to be willing to spend upwards 0f $2k a day for one campaign if you want to hit those 1000 item campaigns.

I was spending $200+ from the start of one campaign because I had lot’s of ads and then after a couple of days I planned to scale my winners, cut my losers. Well you try and risk losing $200 x 5 campaigns in one day without seeing a ROI. Let me just say watching $200 fly out the door and little to no sales coming back is scary because it leads you to think it’s not working. I paused my campaigns

My inexperience of going big shot me in the foot because yea, I was spending $200 and as soon as I got into scaling I could potentially spend over $2k a day. So I saw all this money beings spent with nothing coming back. I thought I had five t-shirts that would not sell. However when I looked at each ad individually, even after spending $200 most ads never spent over $5 and some never reached over $2! The ads didn’t even have time to reach the audience and go viral. Out the gate if you add up all the ads together though, you’re looking at well over 200-500 ads spending $2-$5 each.

So from the outside view it was scary for me seeing this big spend and no return but when I got my microscope out to look at one ad on it’s own I realised I actually spent nothing! Didn’t even give the ad time to blossom. Unfortunately I never had the balls to keep the ads running like this. I scaled some short term winners and cut everything else. It still worked out at a profit but not on the scale it should have been.

So I concentrated on one campaign and I scaled it on it’s own. That was so much easier to manage. From now on, while I am still new to playing at this level I will only launch two at a time. I think can manage that.

Now onto why Facebook has been a pain in the arse this week and why it’s also probably had an affect on my sales as a whole.

In four days my lone campaign reached 109 sales which is very disappointing because I expect it to be on at least 200-300 by now. I have had successful campaigns previously where I spent $20 to make 15 sales and I know once I scale up I am going to get lot’s of sales. This week however something very weird is happening.

To start with I got 23 sales in my first 24 hours with a low budget. Licking my lips I scale it and the next day I make 10 sales…With all my ads for this campaign some barely reached $5 so I pressed on and this is where it get’s frustrating. On my third day with the campaign, I barely reached 1pm UTC and I made 40 sales. The day was just getting started, previously if I made 40 sales by 6pm UTC I knew I was hitting around 60-100 sales but it was only 1pm. #gettingreadytomakemoney.

So it’s 1pm UTC and I made 40 sales I was buzzing because I hadn’t even scaled this ad to my whole audience yet. Every time I refresh I have more sales but then something happens. The sales just stop. I was getting over five sales an hour but an hour goes by…no sales. Two hours no sales. SIX HOURS with one sale. How does that happen? I really cannot work it out other than Facebook must have gone from giving me great traffic to shit traffic. I turned my ads off because I I just spent $200 with no sales. I felt sick because I was on to have one of my best sales day ever. I ended the day with 56 sales but I lost most of my profit because I kept my ads running when I never knew to stop them. You think the sales will come back in a minute but they don’t.

The next day I turned the ads on again. I am helping my sister move house but whenever I get the chance I check sales. 7am UTC, sales start coming in slowly and by 1pm and have made 22 sales. Going OK, the sales carried on coming in. I had 30 sales and then it reaches 4pm. Same thing as the day before, the sales just stop. This time I let it run for a couple of hours with no sales, lost $40 of my profit and I turned all my ads off except my best converting ad. I finished the day on 40 sales and $400 in profit. It should be much more.

The next day is me writing this post. My ads are still off and I am going to turn them on just as I finish this. If for some weird reason my audience only buys between the hours of 7am-4pm then I will just let them run at that time over a month. Personally I don’t see how ads can just STOP converting, going from 3-5 sales an hour to no sales for hours on end.

It does lead me to wonder that maybe when I was launching five campaigns at once it wasn’t entirely my fault, what if Facebook wasn’t displaying ads to my audience properly? It’s easy though, to point your finger at someone else when something doesn’t go to plan. We just have to learn to expect these things in a business where we rely on a certain platform for traffic.

Sadly not the $10,000+ week I hoped for. I will be launching these t-shirts out again individually this month and in December because I think I can still get at least $10,000 out of them if I run the ads correctly with  budget I can manage.

We still got 20 days until December maybe I could turn it around….It’s not happening. If I made $10,000 this week then yep I would reinvest it in ten new  Facebook pages and get ready to make a killing. Right now though, I need to concentrate on recuperating my money I spent last month.

 

$100,000 Challenge Update 2 – November Is Coming Fast

I realised something I am doing is setting a goal for each month. A target I want to hit. For instance this month my target was to make $10,000 and November my target is $30,000+.

I am thinking about what I did to make $10,000 this month, if I just repeat that step five times I could possibly end up hitting $50k in a month. It’s highly unlikely that all campaigns have the same success BUT it’s possible that my new campaigns do just as well or better. It’s also a possibility that I could make less than $10k next month but we don’t want to think like that!

The funny thing is I realised that I am moving my focus onto the next goal. What I mean is, as soon as November hits my actions from October will fall into motion and all my thoughts will be moved to hitting my $100k goal in December. For example as soon as October hit, other than running t-shirt ads for my current campaigns all my work has been directed at making money in November. Until writing this I haven’t even reflected on the achievements of this month about how good my first launch went.

In September I followed the course and was setting up myself for success in October. I launched just one t-shirt this month and I have generated $9500 in revenue. I haven’t hit my $10,000 with t-shirts alone. I got close and it’s not bad for running just one t-shirt. Previously following the Teespring method of other marketers I would have had to work ten times as hard launching five or more campaigns a day!

So what have I been doing this month to prepare for success in November? I can’t disclose much because I have paid money to learn this “blueprint”. This month I saw what worked in one niche and so I setup four new niches. With the help of my VA I have built them all up to a level to repeat the success I had with my first niche. That’s it.

I have worked out what works. Now it’s a process of scaling and repeating what works. My plan is to carry on outsourcing as much as possible because I think the more I outsource the quicker I can scale! Before I know if November will pay off for me I am going to scale out to ten more niches. There’s a possibility I could spend all my money and not get it back but luckily I am in a position where I can afford to do it and I am going to take advantage of it.

Right now I am in the process of waiting for my designer to come back with my new t-shirts for November. This is why I have time to stop and write this post. The new t-shirts will be completed within three days and I will be launching them on November 1st. I will have an update on this blog on the 10th of November and we will know if my efforts have paid off or not.

I Have Shot Myself In The Foot!

I realised this month I have shot myself in the foot again like I did on my $10k goal. It’s Rachael’s 30th birthday on the 21st of November which will limit how much I can prepare for my $100k goal in December. The whole month will be one big celebration. Also my sister is moving house and I will be gone for a couple of days to help out there too. I didn’t think of this before setting the goal! I need to take massive action early in November before the big birthday date comes around. I will not be working much after the 21st. I am not complaining, it’s more of a uh-oh hard work and a big month ahead feeling. It’s actually good to know I have a big month ahead because I like the challenge. I hate getting to the end of a day and feeling like I wasted it doing nothing.

November I will have five niches selling t-shirts. In December I plan on having 15 niches up and ready to roll out t-shirts. That’s 10 more niches to build from scratch in November! It’s going to be a hard feat to pull off but it’s going to be a fun process.

Remember the date November 10th, I will make an update of my new campaigns and we’ll see if I am having a good month or not. In fact the success of these campaigns will make or break me reaching the $100k goal. I’ll need the financial backing and without it I can’t reach an audience of buyers. See you on the 10th of November!

Hiring A Virtual Assistant Part Two

A couple of weeks ago I spoke about my experience trying to hire my first ever online virtual assistant.

So two weeks have passed and I am happy to say that the original person I hired to do the job is great. At first I was sceptical when she asked for two weeks payment straight up. I refused and stuck to what we agreed. She works for me and then payment will follow. She agreed and straight away she stepped into the role to manage my pages. She understood everything, has really good english and adapts her posts to the niche accordingly. Really good.

We’ve had a few bumps in the road when it comes to payment but I believe it’s all sorted now. We stay in touch via Skype.

I hired this VA from onlinejobs.ph. When I get more pages up in November I will definitely be looking again on there for another person to help me out.

Something that I touched on in the previous post was making sure they do work before you pay them. The reason is you don’t know who you’re dealing with. I am sure that a couple of people I interviewed used fake pictures and were not who they said they were.

Making them work first stops from just taking your money and running off. I pay my VA weekly. She works monday-friday and I pay her on the Friday on the last working day of the week.

This is great because I now outsource all my t-shirt designs, I don’t touch photoshop anymore except for creating Facebook ads and now I don’t have to stress about my pages dying of death when I forget to post to them.

Next job will be to outsource the role of Facebook research and ad management. This will be a bit trickier since it’s where the business can lose or make a lot of money. If a certain ad group is spending $200 a day is not making sales I will know to turn it off but can I rely on someone else to know that?

I think this business can be outsourced in all different sections, it won’t be overnight process but if I get it right then I will be happy and will probably be taking a long holiday.

Hiring My First Virtual Assistant

The past week or so I have been trying to hire a virtual assistant.

I have quickly learned that it’s not a fast process and it shouldn’t be. Much like hiring someone for a brick and mortar job you need to make sure the person is the right fit.

So I jumped onto odesk.com and onlinejobs.ph. I setup my advert and let the applicants come rushing in for the role of a virtual assistant. FULL TIME EMPLOYEE.

I decided right off that I wanted to try my hand at hiring someone at onlinejobs.ph simply because it looked less expensive and I have never used the site before. I have seen it recommended a lot over the years and noted that if I ever needed a VA, I would check it out.

Now I never knew what a good price was for a good VA. I set my price to $400-$600 a month. Unsure though, I jumped onto the Laboratory Facebook group and asked in there.

Apparently $600 is way too much and I should be looking at $80 a week max. I quickly changed my job application salary requirements.

I also got people in the lab recommending me their past VA’s, people who can manage 10 Facebook pages for $50 a week! Crazy. Upon the recommendation I spoke to the VA on Skype and immediately hired them on spot. Not a good choice.

I took this someones recommendation over my own judgement and I soon realised after setting them the task of actually doing work they wasn’t competent. I needed their written english to be great and it was average at best. Words were in the wrong places and they had terrible misspellings. What was I expecting for $50 a week right?

I went straight back to onlinejobs.ph and started to sift through people who seemed more suitable for the role. Slightly pricier at $300-$350 a month but it’s still very cheap.

People who seemed worthy of the role were sent my Skype ID so I could interview them further. My first potential employee on Skype had great english and was very keen to get started. From this first conversation I built up a script.

Overall in a couple of hours I had interviewed five people and gave them all the same task. The task was basically the job they would be doing. I was testing their english and ability to follow instructions.

Four of them messed up on instructions. They were all given the same material and we all had the same conversation. One girl did everything right.

I have hired my new VA, we discussed payment on a weekly basis via Paypal. I gave her all the material she needed to get started and left her to it. I told her to take the next day to learn everything and do some research. I didn’t want to overwhelm her straight away.

Everything seemed perfect about her until….

I left my computer for an hour and I come back to a well drafted message on Skype. I don’t want to disclose the whole message here but she spoke about life problems and basically asking me to pay her two weeks in advance so she could survive. Uh oh…..

Honestly, how was she coping before I came along less than 24 hours ago?

I have spoke to this person for two hours on Skype, I am not sending over $180 to a stranger. Man the audacity of it. I told her we’re sticking with our original agreement of weekly payments.

I can’t help feeling slightly annoyed. Is this person going to take me for a ride? It’s something I am very aware of and I have read the horror stories online.

This screams scam, back the hell away and get a new VA. Curiously I contacted onlinejobs.ph to see what they had to say. Here’s their response:

“Thank you for your email. You are correct in not prepaying/forwarding money. Though, the Philippines is a culture of negotiation…..so I wouldn’t necessarily think that they will be a bad worker b/c they attempted to negotiate a prepayment of salary. I would just see how they do during their trial period.”

So…I have a decision, ride it out for a couple of weeks with this person and see how they perform or follow my gut instinct and try looking for new people. If I trial her out and she turns out to be a scammer this will be a waste of two weeks and could cost me a lot of money since at the moment the tasks I need to be done are going nowhere.

I am going trial her out. I am not happy about it but I don’t want to waste other peoples time and my own if it’s not necessary. Let’s hope this was a minor hiccup. She will only get paid for doing the tasks I have set her so I won’t lose out on anything.

If you’re thinking of hiring a virtual assistant I would say interview at least 10 potential people who you think could be capable of doing the job. Make sure they are asking for a wage you’re willing to pay and have a task ready for them to do that is similar to the job they will doing for you on a day to day basis.

Make sure you pay them weekly after a weeks work has been carried out. This way you are only paying for work that has been done. They can’t take your money and run without doing some work first.

The rest will have to be continued in a later post. Will this person turn out to be legit? Only time will tell…

$100,000 In One Month

This is my new goal. I have set it astronomically high but I 100% believe this is possible and I will not settle for a lesser amount. I want to make $100,000 in the month of December following what I am currently learning from Trey Lewellen.

I am going to be updating my progress here regularly. At no point will any secrets be shared from Trey’s mastermind coaching. If you guys wanna learn how to do this stuff you can seek out Trey on Facebook.

SO the goal is to have 10 t-shirts in 10 niches ready to roll out on the 1st of December 2014. They will be 7 day campaigns, this is so I can tell the buyers of my t-shirt that it will be the perfect Christmas present and it will reach them in time for the 25th.

I am banking on 50% of these campaigns to reach 1,000+ in sales. The seasonal time of the year will hopefully help me.

In order to do this I will need to hire my first ever virtual assistant. First thing on the list is to get a VA who can manage all my Facebook pages. I am falling behind on one page, how will I get 10 running successfully?

After that I need a copywriter who can write good emails. This could be a bit more expensive. Actually unaffordable for all of my page…however I will just use a copywriter for one page.

Time to get on it.

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