My June 2017 Monthly Income Report

Welcome to my June 2017 Monthly Income Report! I’ve got a great one for you this month, as it includes earnings from my recent Smart From Scratch online course launch. But, as always, let me first share what these income reports are all about, for those who may be new. In October 2008, after generating an income online for the first time from my architecture-related business, I decided to share openly how much money I was making, and exactly how it all happened. Since then, I’ve been posting these reports monthly, which you can find here on my income report page. I do this not only to keep track and inspire others, but also as a way to teach lessons along the way. I’ll tell you this, though: I don’t know everything there is to know about online business. I’m always learning, but whether my income goes up, or it […]

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SPI 271: An Interview with The Five-Minute Journal Founders UJ Ramdas and Alex Ikonn

This month, I’ve been learning everything I can about creating and selling physical products. I’ve explored how new products get made, how they get in the hands of customers, and how great products attract communities of raving fans. Today, I’m digging a little deeper and asking “why”—why should my audience use my product, and how will it change their lives for the better? Here to help me are two product creators who know all about changing lives: UJ Ramdas and Alex Ikonn, co-founders of The Five-Minute Journal. I talk a lot about The Five-Minute Journal and how it’s transformed my daily routine. Journaling has changed me as both an entrepreneur and a person, and thanks to the incredible design of UJ and Alex’s journal, it’s a habit I love returning to each day. You’ll hear more about the journal’s design in our interview, but you’ll also hear a lot about the “why” behind this very special product. UJ and […]

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Launch Your Product with Crowdfunding | The $1 Million LEGO Wall

Whenever I travel anywhere, I bring my laptop, and on my laptop there’s a laptop cover that everyone seems to ask about. It comes from Brik Book, and it’s a LEGO-compatible cover. It’s awesome. I interviewed the founder of Brik Book, Brett Miller, way back on Smart Passive Income Podcast Session #217, and since then he’s been doing even more to grow the company, including a new product that was recently released called Brik Tile. Using the same launch model, he utilized Kickstarter, and crushed it. I wanted to bring Brett back on the blog today to write a guest post related to his crowdfunding journey, and how we might be able to follow his lead. He’s got an amazing and incredibly detailed overview of the entire process for you below, so if you’re looking to launch your new product soon, pay attention. Here’s Brett Miller, founder of Brik, with […]

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A Beginner’s Guide to Predictable Marketing Funnels

In this guest post, Greg Hickman gives us an in-depth beginner’s guide to predictable marketing funnels. Learn how to set up a reliable system for growth. Pat Flynn May 15, 2017 We’ve been going full steam this month with a load of paid advertising related content, both here on the blog and on the podcast. Before we keep going, however, it’s important that we pull back a little and ask ourselves this question: What are we driving traffic to anyway? A product? A promotion? No. A funnel. We MUST know what our goals are related to the traffic we pay for, or else—and I can say this from experience—you’ll quickly lose money and opportunity. So today, I’m happy to re-introduce Greg Hickman. He’s been on the podcast before way back in Smart Passive Income Podcast Session #65, where he talked about marketing strategies related to mobile, such as SMS and […]

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SPI 265: Shane and Jocelyn Sams and Their Awesome Advertising Strategy

Smart Passive Income Podcast superstars Shane and Jocelyn Sams have returned! It’s been almost three years since they joined me for Episode 122, and today, the Sams duo is back with an update on their online business journey and advertising strategy that I know you’re going to love. Shane and Jocelyn were both teachers before diving into online business. They took their education expertise, including their insider knowledge of what teachers need, and used it to build a wildly successful line of digital products. Their business has since grown to include Flipped Lifestyle, a hub for aspiring online entrepreneurs chasing the passive income lifestyle. They continue to grow their business thanks in part to their clever advertising strategy, and that’s what they’re here to talk about today. Creating lucrative, relevant ads is a great way to draw more eyes and ears to your business while generating passive income. Through smart testing and a […]

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How to Start with Paid Advertising

I’ve never run a paid advertisement for my own products. Why? Well, simply because I’ve never had any products of my own to sell. One of my goals for 2017 is to shift the higher percentage of income coming from affiliate marketing (selling the products of others for a commission) to earnings generated from my own stuff. The primary driver for that shift will be my online courses. I’ve launched a couple of online courses this year already, and with the reopening of those courses over the span of the next few months, it’s about time I finally add some fuel to the furnace and pay for advertisements, something many successful entrepreneurs say they wish they had done sooner. I’ve run ads for non-product things before, such as boosted posts on Facebook, or ads to increase the number of fans on my business page, but I’ve never run ads as […]

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SPI 263: Laddering Up: How to Build a 7-Figure Business by Building a $7K per Month Business

Clay Collins of LeadPages returns to the Smart Passive Income Podcast for another incredible, value-packed (and potentially record-breaking) episode. This time, Clay is dropping serious knowledge on building a seven-figure business, step by step. [Full Disclosure: FYI, I’m a compensated advisor and an affiliate for LeadPages.] During his time as CEO and co-founder of LeadPages, Clay has watched his business grow from a humble blog to a seven-figure company with a sprawling array of product offerings. He’s got his process for scaling a successful business down to a science, and that’s what he’s sharing here today. Clay’s got big plans for this episode: He wants to break his own record for the most downloads of an SPI Podcast episode (Episode 78). He wants to pack hundreds of dollars of value—the equivalent of an online course—into one interview. And he wants you to walk away with a framework you can implement today to turn […]

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Thanks to You, a Lifelong Dream Came True

From the bottom of my heart, thank you! You helped make a really important dream of mine come true. Ever since I started this entrepreneurial journey in 2008, I’ve always wanted to write a book, and it was my dream to one day walk into a bookstore with my kids and point it out to them. I even published a blog post back in 2012 that said the exact same thing. After Will It Fly? was self-published and launched in early 2016, something I didn’t think was possible happened: it became a Wall Street Journal bestseller. Could this self-published book also be the book that gets into bookstores? It had already surprised me once, and I was determined to see if it could do it again. Because the SPI audience played a critical role in it becoming a bestseller, I decided to call upon the loyal fans once more to […]

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SPI 262: Habit Forming Products with Nir Eyal, Author of Hooked

How many platforms do you check every day, almost without thinking about it? What products are an unconscious part of your daily routine? These kinds of habit forming products are what today’s episode is all about. Here to explore how customers get “hooked” on products is behavior expert and author of Hooked, Nir Eyal. The most successful companies, Nir will tell you, have figured out to scratch a universal “itch” with their product. They’ve connected their creation to behavioral triggers, whether internal or external, that send users reaching for their particular product. It’s a complex science—one that smart entrepreneurs can leverage to get their product into as many hands as possible. In this episode, Nir will walk you through the phases of building a habit forming product. He’ll debunk common myths about human behavior and reveal the science behind the platforms we use every day. He’ll also get into the ethics of creating habits, and how to ensure your product is […]

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Physical Product Experiment [PPE #2] – Validation and Feedback

Welcome to the second edition of the Physical Product Experiment! In this series, I will be exploring and experimenting my way through a brand new realm for me: a physical product. In case you missed the first Physical Product Experiment [PPE #1] post, you can check that out here. To help ease you into this second post, I want to share a quick recap on what it is I am experimenting with, why I am doing it, and what it means for you! But before I do that, I want to thank those who’ve already signed up to be a part of the initial feedback group for this physical product. You will, with the help of the productivity calendar, be writing the first draft of a book in ninety days. That’s awesome, and I’m so excited to see what you’ll write. Remember this: You are the glue that holds this […]

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SEO in 2017: Proven Content Ideas That Attract Backlinks

In this guest post, Glen Allsopp explores SEO in 2017, offering up in-depth content strategy ideas to help you attract backlinks to your site. Pat Flynn March 27, 2017 This is a guest post from Glen Allsopp from Gaps.com, who (fun fact) was featured in SPI Podcast Session #3 from over six years ago! He was one of the first in the world of SEO to really inspire me back in the day, and someone, although quite a bit younger than me, I very much look up to. He’s been diving even more into the world of SEO since 2010, which is why I wanted him to share a guest post about what’s working today. Take it away Glen! I’ve been actively involved in the SEO world for eleven years now, and if there’s one thing that has kept me so interested in the topic it’s the ever-changing landscape of […]

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SPI 257: The Incredible Story Behind Kelsey Baldwin’s Business, Paper and Oats

Sometimes, when life throws us a curveball, taking a risk on a brand new entrepreneurial journey is the last thing on our minds. That wasn’t the case for Kelsey Baldwin of Paper & Oats, who rebounded from a major setback by selling digital products and courses online. Kelsey made the leap into entrepreneurship after learning she was going to be a single mom. It was a shocking turn of events for Kelsey, but thanks to some expert planning, drive, and skill as a graphic designer, she transitioned from her nine-to-five job at a design agency to freelancing and selling her designs online. Today, she continues to run a thriving business educating fellow designers through her online courses and selling digital products through Etsy and PaperandOats.com. Kelsey’s resourcefulness and resilience is so inspirational to online entrepreneurs like me. Listen in to hear her advice for recovering from life’s setbacks, and how she’s built a thriving online empire one piece […]

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My February 2017 Monthly Income Report

Welcome to my second Income Report for 2017! It seems like this year is one of those years that’s going to fly by, because I felt like it was just yesterday that my January 2017 income report was published. I’m always happy to share my progress with you. Sometimes things go well and the numbers climb higher, and other months the numbers decrease. Either way, it’s really not about the numbers at all, but about what made those numbers happen. It’s about the lessons I learned, and both the wins and failures I experience, shared to help you as you grow and scale your own online business. February was an intense month for a number of reasons: a new course launch, some amazing speaking opportunities coming up in March, new features on the SPI blog, and more. So, without further delay, let’s dive right in! Important Goings-On in February First, […]

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Smart from Scratch® Is Now Available

This announcement has been a long time coming, but I’m happy to share that my first and brand new course, Smart from Scratch®, is now available! Registration for Smart From Scratch opens today, February 27, 2017, and closes on March 5, 2017 at midnight PST! Register here today! Smart from Scratch is a detailed, step-by-step course I created to help you find one winning business idea that’s worth your time and energy. Through a series of “litmus tests,” you’ll be able to pick a business idea, have confidence in the decisions you make moving forward, and even work toward earning your first customer. Have you ever had any of the following thoughts? “I don’t even know where to start.” “I feel like I’m just wasting my time.” “I’m overwhelmed by all of the information out there to help me start a business.” “I’m not sure what kind of business I’d like to […]

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SPI 254: Lessons Learned While Testing and Launching My First Online Course

Next week is the official launch of Smart from Scratch®, my very first online course, and I couldn’t be more excited. It also feels like the perfect time to look back on my previous launch experiences and explore what I’ve learned about creating, testing, launching, and maintaining a product. Before Smart from Scratch, there was Breakthrough Blogging, my first membership site. I eventually ended that project after realizing the crucial things I’d overlooked when designing and launching it. Those mistakes, however, helped me fine-tune future launches and gave me a deeper understanding of how best to serve this audience. In this episode, I want to share what I fixed about my launching strategy. You’ll hear what I’ve learned about validating product ideas, pricing a course, building community, and creating a product I can stand behind. You all have taught me so much about crafting the best resources possible. I’m thrilled to share Smart from Scratch with you […]

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How to Get the Most Out of an Online Course

Whose responsibility is it when it comes to the success rate of an online course? Put another way: if one of your students fails to see results after buying access to your online course, is it your fault, or their fault? Responsibility lies with both parties, but the fault of a failing student depends on a number of factors, which I’ll dig into here in this post. Whether you sell (or plan to sell) online courses, or you’re a student who takes online courses, increasing your success rate is a worthy target. Let’s talk about how you can do that. The Course Creator’s Responsibility All of this is on top of my mind because on Monday, February 27, my brand new online course, Smart from Scratch, will go live. It was first launched late last year to a limited number of students on a very specific segment of my email […]

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SPI 253: How to Build Relationships with Influencers with Selena Soo

I’ve talked about relationship building a lot on the Smart Passive Income Podcast. It’s an essential—and potentially life-changing—aspect of growing your business and your reputation as an entrepreneur. That’s why I’ve invited a relationship mastermind, Selena Soo, here today to give you her expert perspective on approaching influencers and building your network. As a coach to countless successful entrepreneurs (some of them coaches themselves), Selena understands the kinds of tactics that win over new contacts and forge meaningful connections. You’ll hear stories from her own encounters with industry legends, the mindset she adopts when making a first impression, and common mistakes she sees other entrepreneurs make. Selena and I also walk through three fun, hypothetical scenarios where you’ll get to hear her relationship-building strategies in action. We’ll cover everything from marketing a new book to attracting high-level coaching clients—there’s something for every entrepreneur in this episode. Want to make a stellar impression the next […]

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My January 2017 Monthly Income Report

Welcome to the first Income Report of 2017! Here, I’ll be detailing line items from January 2017, including income sources and expenses. As always, I’ll also be sharing what’s been going on internally and what the plans are in the coming months. If you’d like to get a record of all Monthly Income Reports dating back to October 2008, you can find them right here. Thanks again, as always, for your support. Now, let’s get started. Important Goings-On in January As with most people, I had a newly found energy and a ton of excitement as the calendar started fresh again. I was a little worried because my family and I had just returned from an Australian Christmas vacation, and usually when I come back from long trips I get jet lagged and don’t want to work for a while. This time, however, I recovered very quickly, and on day […]

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7 Lessons I Learned While Testing & Launching My First Online Course

I’ve learned seven essential and inspiring lessons while testing and launching my first online course, Smart From Scratch, on Teachable. Pat Flynn February 6, 2017 In October 2016, I opened my first online course to a limited group of founding students. You see, just as you need to validate your business idea, a concept I unpack in my book, Will It Fly?, I needed to validate the idea for my online course. After all, it was my first and I had no idea how people would respond. In early October I launched Smart From Scratch® to 100 students. Less than a day later, every spot was filled, with the waitlist growing rapidly. I was amazed by the response! From October through today, the feedback and constructive criticism I’ve received about the course has been so invaluable. At each stage, my team and I took that feedback and applied it directly […]

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SPI 251: (In the Middle) Launching a New Course with New Entrepreneur, Sarah Argenal

I’d like you to meet Sarah Argenal, the creator of Working Parent Resource. Sarah knows all about balancing raising a family with pursuing your career, and she’s in the midst of creating and launching an online course to help working parents like herself. I’ve have the pleasure of getting to know and mentor Sarah through a series of “accountability calls” as she builds her online course, and today, we’re going to check in on her progress. Sarah’s worked hard to validate, build, and promote her course. She’s grown her email list, surveyed her prospective customers, and created valuable course content—all while balancing a full-time job. In today’s call, she and I will walk through what’s working and what can still be improved. I’ll share my advice for tweaking her messaging, attracting future students, and taking her course to the next level. This episode is a rare opportunity to eavesdrop on an entrepreneur mid-process. Join Sarah and me for […]

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