Episode 114 “Burn Your Business To The Ground”
EntreProgrammers are joined by Adrian Rosebrock from pyimagesearch. Derick asks Adrian how he was able to make his kickstarter campaign successful. Adrian explains what his blog and business are about.
Adrian explains that the first two days are early signs of the success of your campaign. Adrian mentions he aimed to raise just below the full funding. Adrian shares how to get funded faster, as far as providing tons of value. Adrian talks about reverse engineering the campaign to reach his funding goal.
Derick ask what was the criteria and the goals. Adrian talks about the early bird backers and the different tiers pricing.
Josh asked how the 25 dollar tier worked for the subscription. Adrian continues with a launch plan and email.
Chuck talks a bit about the past kickstarter he did, and ask if a previous semi- failed kickstarter would hurt future campaigns. Derick talk
Derick ask about validation and pricing of the tiers. Adrian explains the tier pricing. Adrian talks about advertising and creating validation. Adrian talks about reaching out to your list and do some researching before jumping into a kickstarter campaign.
Derick mentions he might be interested in doing a kickstarter in the near future, for additional work. Derick talks about his plans for the campaign. Adrian shares more about tactics for validation from your audience.
Derick shares his ideas with the e-book. Chuck ask what Adrian’s other marketing his has done before the kickstarter.
Chuck shares that his ebook, along with a course would make a lot of sense. This leads Chuck to thinking about doing a kickstarter campaign as well. EntreProgrammers and Adrian discuss annoying emails.
John talks about testing his confidence on the beach. Based on what people were asking about when he speaks of confidence. John talks about getting an email from an organization call women in tech.
Chuck ask about implementing video along with a kickstarter campiagn. Chuck wants to know how important this type of media is to the platform. John talks about being authentic and loose in front of the video camera.
Derick mentions that he just got his Slack channel started and has a few people on the channel. Derick shared his short story to get people on the Slack channel. Derick says he is still manually getting people on Slack. Derick explains why he chose Slack for a forum type platform.
Derick says he wants to some type of automated system to notify people about engagement in Slack. Derick shares his ideas on what the official cut off will be for the Slack channel.
Chuck talks about using MemberPress. Derick talks about killing his monthly subscription on May 1st and only go to the annual model. Derick talks about matching the value proposition, to the price, is a big job as he make the changes.
John mentions that it is good that Derick has a date set for implementing all the changes. John mentions that they hit a new milestone with product sales. Over 10K! Josh talks about where the sales are coming from as far as the funnels. Josh talks about issues with paragraph space in Thrive.
John mentions that Josh’s copy is doing great for the “10 Steps Course…” Derick mentions that his evergreen funnel is still doing great for the the RabbitMQ bundle.
Josh talks about his Sublime list. Derick ask why he has not sold it to Wes. Josh mentions that it is costing him 500 dollars a month to keep in running. Josh look into how many people are actually opening the sublime emails. Josh talks about maybe doing some small projects or products.
John says to drop the list in the the Panko Machine to hit milestone one. EntreProgarmmers suggests that Josh should get rid of the Sublime list. Josh is not comfortable with giving the sublime list to Simple Programmer, because he thinks it’s spamming. John suggests sending an email out to tell his list that he is now a partner to Simple Programmer, so it is not spamming.
Adrian agrees the that dropping the list into another campaign might get Simple Programmer black listed. Also, he should only worry about getting to the 49 percent ownership of Simple Programmer. Josh has a lot of thinking to do about what to do with the list.
Chuck talks about the Freelancer episode 150, and how he and Mandy had a conversations on air about their work contract. Chuck might now pay her a fix rate to take on more responsibility. The Entreprogarmmers have questions about the involvement in the hiring process for projects in his business.
John suggests to Chuck to start from scratch at see what he needs and does not need in his business. The EntreProgrammers talk about ways to help Chuck sort out the work responsibility with Mandy.
Thoughts for the Week
Derick - Some times you need to get that other perspective.
Josh - Is this something you want to be doing in five years
John - You are never done!
Adrian - Set traumatic life changing goals.
Episode 113 “Expert Sex Change Host”
Derick and Josh plan an 8 hours podcast episode since Chuck and John are out. Derick shares his expertise on gaming consoles, shelf life, and his preferences.
Josh mentions he has been working long hours on the Simple Programmer sales page with eleven thousand words in the bag. Josh thinks he can hack the content down to eight thousand words soon.
Josh shares his strategy for writing the sales page and searching through old material for Simple Programmer. Josh goes into detail for writing the lead and the rest of the email sequence for the courses.
Josh shared that he was home schooled, so deadlines are kind of blurred. But he is trying to make his deadline for John’s content. Josh mentions he did not have any coaching student today.
Josh mentions he gave the tasks of getting testimonials to John and Rodrigo. Josh shares a recent testimonial for a follower of Simple Programmer. Josh says they are reacting quick with the testimonials and contacting the customers. Josh mention that they are not changing the course for How To Market Yourself course.
Derick asks how to create an email that acknowledges your audience’s pain points, but still provides value, even thought you’re digging into a wound. Josh explains starting with a strategic story.
Josh talks about how creating emails for a blogs, means doing tons of research. Josh says to “Giveaway the what, and sell the how.”
Josh goes into the how to’s of AdWords using the Wright Brothers as an example. Josh talks about the past examples of John’s trials of developing and learning to play guitar.
Derick says he has plenty of crazy stories to implement into his email sequence. Josh mentions the power of telling story as apart of marketing.
Josh talks about how he feels when he writes as a professional. Josh mentions he feels like there is a belt tightening around his chest as he is doing work because of all the deadlines.
Derick talks about getting the motivation to write a blog, and how he trained himself to write his blog content. Josh talks about the techniques for writing for a paper and for school. Josh and Derick agree on reaching exhaustion when writing and creating email content.
Josh talks about switching their site to another digital ocean site with snappier website loads. Faster then CloudFlare. Josh talks about the trials of the ingratiation and updates to WordPress. Josh talks about paying for some YouTube coaching.
Derick shares that his YouTube subscriber numbers are growth with tons of views. Derick talks about all the organizing he is doing, and trying to create landing pages, a Slack channel, and an automated way to invite new subscribers.
Derick is inviting his email list to create a massive Watch Me Code Slack channel. Derick shares how he is setting up his Watch Me Code Slack channel as far as things the members can and can not do.
Derick talks about putting out fires with his discount code issues again. Derick talks about changing the entire marketing material on his sites, but first he wants to build the community first.
Derick says he want the market base around the bundles, but the all access pass allows you the extras and the community on Slack. Derick knows he may get some angry customers, but he still wants to experiment for 2 months.
Josh mentions to watch out for the month of June, things get kind of weird during this month. Derick mentions that his plan is counter intuitive, but the plan looks like a successful one.
Derick talks about building content for the long term, beside going into React and Redux which might have a shelf life for a couple of months. Derick mentions that RabbitMQ in on the uptick of growth, but is linear. Derick also is still selling his RabbitMQ ebook on LeanPub.
Derick talks about how the EntreProgrammers convinced him to go to the subscription model, which has monthly recurring revenue. Josh makes a correlation of how the market changes, and how Derick’s subscription business might be experiencing a shift in the market as well.
Derick shares a bit with the perception of value. Derick and Josh talks about buy domain names…
Thoughts of the Week!
Derick - Tell a good story!
Josh - Show up and be consistent.
Episode 112 “Derick Favored Ice Cream”
And we’re live! Derick says he is going to raise his prices on Watch Me Code. Derick talks about getting some ideas from the guys at egghead.io. Derick wants to experiment with annual subscriptions and maybe stop the monthly subscriptions. Derick get ideas to possibly try a 6 month or quarterly type subscriptions if the annual model does not work out.
John suggest doing an annual plan with a shorter term model. Josh asks about the turn rate. Derick says he has a 10% turn rate. Derick thinks at least half dozen people are signed up for the entire year. According to the turn rate, the annual plan makes sense for Derick subscriptions. Derick thinks this is going to change the overall message to the corporate organization who pay for their employee’s subscriptions.
Josh suggest outlining a ‘battle plan,’ so the EntreProgrammers can help him keep on track. Derick says he wants to try this plan for 2 months, which is fair enough to lose sales for 2 months until things pickup on the new model. Derick plans to create some special video content for the on-boarding of new signups.
John is concerned about not having a monthly plan. Chuck thinks he should have a baseline for sure. John thinks that $15 verses $50 means those who are willing to pay more are serious about the subscription. Josh suggest a lifetime subscription at $997.
Josh says the 3-4 month customer lifetime is normal for this kind of site, and increasing that is difficult. Josh thinks the revenue will let you know which model or models to go with. John suggests a type of community forum as apart of the new plan. Derick thinks using a Slack channel or using a Facebook group.
Derick say he needs to go back to PayPal integration in Drip, and creating an automated system to invite people to Slack when they signup.
John says he is into the bookkeeping or digging deep into his bookkeeping. John says he is following what his current bookkeeper is doing. John mentions he wants to switch to a cash base accounting. John thinks this will streamline the bookkeeping system.
Chuck talks about the numbers in his bookkeeping. Chuck thinks he may have to ask his bookkeeper some questions. John says it is important if things are categorized to track what is making the revenue. The EntreProgrammers talk about how to check on bookkeeping and understanding how how numbers are defined. Chuck talks about having to let go of one of his Rails developer.
Chuck talks about his experiment with WordPress and building out a site. Chuck mentions he got more done with his WordPress site this past week. Derick mentions that EntreProgrammers no longer have Nird as a sponsor.
Derick plugs the book “Death by Meeting” by Patrick Lencioni. The EntreProgrammers talk about their experience at Micro Conf. and being recognized by tons of fans.
Derick shares a story about trying to get into the Ghost Bar with John. “What happens in Vegas gets broadcast on Youtube.”
John mentions doing a talk at Micro Conf., especially about 401k and real estate. Chuck ask what was one of the biggest take aways after attending Micro Conf. Chuck talks about his conversation with Kai Davis and his key take aways. Derick talks about putting names to faces and finally meeting Rob Walling, and his takeaways for Micro Conf. John talks about not really have a list of things, but making tons of connections. Josh mentions that he is still not in the spot to where the situations apply to him at this in his business.
Josh thinks that the Life Style business idea is a cope out and explains why. EntreProgrammers discuss a what a competitor is on a smaller scale. John says it’s hard to create 500 dollars of passive income, but once you start creating 3000 dollars of passive income, its not hard to create 10,000 dollars thereafter.
Thoughts for the Week
Derick - Stop making excuses…and get your product out the door.
John - Always face the truth.
Josh - Get to know your customers
Chuck - Get comfortable being Uncomfortable….
Episode 111 “Retreat in Las Vegas”
The EntreProgrammers meet in Las Vegas for Micro Conf.
Derick shares that he may have found a VA from Spain. Derick is setting up test projects for the hiring criteria.
Derick talks about his ideas for doing a Periscope weekly as apart of his content.
EntreProgrammers discuss video production for their content materials.
John talks about the advertisements and monetization on their Youtube channel. John further talks about his Youtube strategy.
Chuck talks about pain points your audience is experiencing in order to get more options. Josh talks about hiring someone to help with advertising on YouTube. Josh talks about finding a clear lead magnet to help Derick’s content.
Derick asks if he should pay someone to do the banner art for Youtube. Chuck says it would help, but since he already has art for websites he should repurpose the graphics. Derick thinks he really should use his stick figures in his videos ideas. .
John mention VIDIQ to looking for rankings and statistics. Derick talks about curating content on his site. Josh talks about YouTube ad policies and barriers to entry.
John talks about hiring a linux guy for Simple Programmer. John talks about how he hired 5 people to do work on the backups systems of Simple Programmer. John mentions he hired based on performance an communication, because all application were excellent.
Chuck is talking about having Mandy manage a team. Chuck is asking if it worth making Mandy an actual employee, because of the hours she is working according to law. Chuck asks what is the criteria for building out a team. Derick makes a good point that it depends on how he likes to work.
The EntreProgrammers tell Chuck to do a one-off project and hire severals freelancers to do the same job. Chuck says he needs to free up Mandy for other important jobs. Derick asks what kind of test he needs to present to hire for a editing job.
The EntreProgrammers discuss the task and cost to do video production. This job may be content management as well.
Chuck talks about one off projects and using a his regular person to do the job. Chuck is trying to figure out exactly who manages what projects on a video, or transcripts, and other projects as far as developing.
EntreProgrammers talks about automating their business to work without them having to be present. Chuck and Derick feel like they are getting to the point that they don't have the time for creative projects. Finding key people is important at this point.
Derick mentions it took him three years to publish his e-book and get concrete feedback. John talks about how businesses acquire technical debt. Derick say this is how businesses grow.
Chuck mentions possibly hiring someone in connection with his current team members. Chuck is thinking about how to do hiring and how to divide up the tasks. Derick mentions he knows that he should’ve been thinking about this kind of stuff a long time ago, as far as hiring a good team.
Chuck ask if John and his team are paying for Slack. John says no! Chuck finds that basecamp might be a good tool for his team, to keep track that the project is done.
Thoughts for the Week!
Derick - It is really hard to hire the right person then it is to hire for technical skill. You are not going to get good at it if you don’t do it!
Chuck - Burn Out.
John - Never lose the capacity for good things..