How the heck is it already the end of April?
This year is shooting by too fast…
April saw an uptick in traffic on WorldwideWantrepreneur.com, but as I’ll share with you in a second, I’m in a frustrating spot when it comes to creating a profitable business.
I’ve made a number of changes to the site with the goal of A) making it more reader-friendly, and B) increasing email sign-ups.
One of the reasons I share updates on this site at all is to hold myself accountable to my goal of building a profitable business this year.
The more people who read these updates and follow along on my journey–the more I feel like I’d be letting you guys down if I fail.
Some things you may notice:
- An updated Start Here page
- An updated About page
- A mini-profile on the sidebar (I’m still debating whether or not I like “Charlie” or “Charles” better)
- And sidebar sections for Popular Posts and Recent Posts
I’m also trying out a SumoMe “welcome mat” to increase email sign-ups.
Let me know if this is too obnoxious.
Progress Building a Business
I’m still focusing on the “debt space”–I want to build an online resource to help young people get out of debt through creative debt hacking and income hustling techniques.
One awesome new development: I heard from someone who had read about me in the newspaper and reached out via my Meetup group. He was inspired, and is considering sleeping in the woods like I did to pay off his debt.
I’ll be staying in touch with him and learning more about his experience (and what got him to this point) over the coming weeks.
I have 30+ data points on problems and challenges that people have shared with me, either from a survey I sent to my Meetup group, by phone interviews, or through Reddit posts.
I started doing validation tests using Adwords campaigns and landing pages, but then realized I had burned through my meager savings (due to travel costs, living expenses, surprise IRS bill, etc.) and put these tests on hold.
One thing I did discover however, was that my landing page (using LeadPages) had images that were too big and were slowing the site down. Google Adwords sent me a warning email telling me to fix this.
My CTRs were solid, but I had zero conversions (ouch), which I think was due partly to picking really cheap keywords that were more focused on saving money rather than debt, and partly due to my site loading so slowly.
And if I’m being honest… partly due to my crappy landing page that I directed them to… it had too much going on and didn’t make the value proposition clear. More on that soon.
I ran out of money earlier this month, so validation tests and further market research took a backseat to doing job interviews and making money.
I’ve got a couple offers on the table and I’m optimistic about my financial future, but it’s really stressful running out of cash (for the second time in my life) and not having a steady paycheck to fall back on.
I’m flying to Malaysia today and will be living there for the next two months.
I suspect my productivity will take a big hit during this time, but I hope to find a cafe or restaurant with wifi where I can continue work online.
My priority for the next month or so is to make money and get on track with steady income (by trading my time for $$$) and then I’ll get to putting more money into PPC campaigns–sending cold traffic to landing pages to try to validate interest and build a list (that I can then survey and interview).
I’m going to run a Facebook Ads campaign next time instead of using Adwords, as my market research shows that it’s primarily millennials who have the most debt in the U.S., and I suspect this audience will be more open to my extreme ideas for destroying debt.
Facebook will make it easy to target this population.
I’m particularly interested in talking with people who enjoy extreme challenges.
My hypothesis: People who thrive on challenge, who like extreme activities like Ironman, Tough Mudder, Spartan Race, etc. — these people may be capable of bringing that intensity, enthusiasm, and ambition, to their financial world if the challenge is appropriately positioned.
Over the coming month I’ll continue market research in this area.
I hope to find more data in forums, blogs, and debt websites where people have expressed their challenges and frustrations with getting out of debt.
From working with orangutans, to freelancing online, to doing market research… the next couple months are going to be crazy.
Do my next steps make sense? Let me know if you think this plan sounds solid, or if you have any suggestions.