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World of Worditude Update for Oct 2021 - Feb 2022

Transcript below if you prefer to read than watch.

The Numbers

October 2021 - £5178.00 - 21.7 hours per week average
November 2021 - £5888.43 - 18.8 hours p/w
December 2021 - £4149.50 - 9.7 hours p/w
January 2022 - £8476.06 - 22.3 hours p/w
February 2022 - £7753.12 - 24 hours p/w
March 2022 - £5785.25 - 22.6 hours p/w

I’m going to take you through a kind of semi-prepared, gentle stroll through the last four or five months of my life and business.

Why I’m documenting this

Now to kind of set a bit of context, at the start of last year, so at the start of 2021, well, near the end of 2020, I found myself rather unhelpfully grumbling quite a lot, that if only I had more time to work, I could definitely make more money.

And it just wasn’t helpful because I didn’t really have more time available to work and didn’t really want to work more hours either anyway.

And so it was just making me miserable every time I thought that to myself.

I needed to reframe it.

I needed to think a different way.

So the first thing I wanted to look at was, okay, how much do I actually want to work? Like do I really want to work more hours? And I, you know, I didn’t. I looked at how my week flowed and all the other responsibilities, I home educate our youngest son, we have continuously, forever had building and DIY projects on the go in the house since we extended it a couple of years ago. I have a lot of things going on.

And so for one week only, I worked just when it felt right. When I had focused opportunities to work and I really was intentional about ‘I’m only going to open my laptop and start work if this work’s going to count’, rather than trying to cram work into every little nook and cranny I could find in my schedule.

I did that for one week and I tracked how many hours I worked and when those hours happened to land and it worked out about 20 hours. And so I decided that was my time budget for working.

If I had worked 20 hours in a week, I had done enough and I was no longer going to keep mumbling to myself, ‘if only I could work more hours, I could make more money’.

Instead I was going to reframe it as ‘with my 20 hour a week work budget, how much money might I be able to make?’.

And that felt a lot easier, a lot lighter, a lot more comfortable.

So then I decided, ‘wow, everyone’s going to want to know about this’ (please infer a slightly sarcastic tone here).

So I started writing a monthly blog where I would share how many hours I’d worked that month and how much money I’d made. And I hoped that over the course of the year, we’d see my income would go up and I’d be like chronicling this journey of how I was getting more and more productive and more time-efficient and making more and more money.

How 2021 Went

What actually happened was, for a little while, my income took a dip as I stopped trying to cram work into every opportunity I had and I became more intentional with how I was working.

My income did dip down a bit, but then it recovered and it sort of stabilized back, between £4,000-£5,000 a month, which was normal for me before I’d started this exercise.

It came back to that by about March time, 2021. And then it just stayed there for months.

I was mostly selling one-to-one copywriting services and also my Write Your Website program, and some copy consults, but mostly it was done-for-you copywriting and one retainer and Write Your Website program was done three times a year. That was enough money for us to be happy and comfortable. But it wasn’t this upward trajectory that I’d been hoping for.

There was only so much of me I could sell. So there was a limit to how much I could sell one-to-one services. And there was a limit to how many people I could take on each round of Write Your Website.

And I could start to see that these limits were kind of baked in.

Life With Chronic Migraine

Then by about September I started to struggle with my health

I have experienced chronic migraine, well, for most of my adult life, it’s been well managed, until two years ago, and then since then, it’s kind of been slowly escalating.

Side note, I’m really distracted because, two weeks ago I had Botox for migraines, done by a doctor.

Allegedly not the same as when you have it done for wrinkles, but definitely it has completely flattened my forehead.

And this bit doesn’t move, but these sides of my eyebrows are way more expressive than ever. My face feels like it’s changed. And when I’m looking at this video, I feel so distracted by it because like, this is not my face, this isn’t what my face used to look like.

So, yeah, if you’ve noticed it’s fine. I know too, I think it will ease off after a while, but that’s what’s going on with my forehead.

Anyway, towards the end of last year, I was experiencing headache or migraine, about 50% of days, it wasn’t even every other day it would be like three or four days in a row.

So it was massively impacting how much I could work.

And it meant that the time that I did spend in front of a computer, I really needed to focus on getting the client-facing money-generating work done.

So I wasn’t writing any blog posts. I’ve managed to keep sort of some social media up-to-date with the help of a social media manager.

I do write the content for it, but she’s definitely helping me make sure that that gets done and I’ve managed to keep up with emailing my list, which I’m pleased with.

But writing any kind of blog posts just went out the window and including doing these updates, which is how I’ve ended up so far behind.

Ironically at the time when finally I started to see that upward trajectory in my income, and that’s why I was really hesitating, do I just let it go and I just stop doing the updates or, do I do like one big update to kind of get us all up to speed where I am right now? And I feel like if I don’t do this update, you’ll have missed the best bit.

Like you’ve hung in there for the boring bits where it was the same month after month. And now finally, I’ve got some traction going, and you know, I’ve actually got news to share and progress, and then I’ve not been doing the updates. So here we are. That’s the background, that kind of brings us up to why am I even doing this update?

Why is it a few months lumped together? Why is my forehead completely flat and not moving? All of the important background information you’ve got right now.

Changes I’ve Made In My Business For 2022

So over Christmas, I noticed that my migraine got a lot better, even though I was eating and drinking whatever I wanted. For one month I decided I’m just going to really enjoy myself and not be really careful, and accept that I’ll have to take a lot of the magic migraine reliever medicine that I take when a migraine hits me.

And so I just did that, and I was fine. I had a lot less migraine and I was still working.

I was still using a computer, but the only thing that was really significantly different in my day, was I wasn’t on any Zoom calls. I hadn’t really booked any in for December.

And then as soon as I came back to work in January, the first day that I took a Zoom call, I had a migraine for the rest of the day.

Now I’ve got no science to back this up whatsoever, but I have always felt like I’m really, really having to concentrate to process what’s being said on the call while also kind of trying to think about what I want to say next, or, you know, like work out my answer.

It feels like a kind of performance and it’s difficult because that doesn’t mean I don’t enjoy it. So if you’ve been on a Zoom call with me and you’re thinking, ‘oh, she hated that’. I really didn’t. I didn’t know it was a problem because I was enjoying it and I hadn’t spotted any kind of pattern, but to me now, there definitely seems to be a pattern.

Armed with that information, I knew I needed to somehow reduce the amount of time I spend on Zoom, which means I initially thought I can’t do one-to-one copywriting because I have to interview the clients. I can’t do Write Your Website because I was doing group calls twice a week.

So to me, that revelation wasn’t good news to start off with. It was a disaster because all the ways I made money revolved around using Zoom calls or retainer clients, actually there were two retainer clients, both revolved around Zoom calls. So, it was a revelation that wasn’t making me happy.

And also at the same time, I was realizing like, by now we’re in January, my kids are now definitely not children. They are 14, almost 15 and a 16-year-old. And nobody tells you this, children get more expensive as they get older. All the time, when they were small, we kept kidding ourselves that financially, this was going to be the most challenging time of our lives while our children were small and we needed to buy toys and equipment for them and pay for childcare, which we didn’t pay, we didn’t have very much, but the costs were high. And the time freedom we had to work was low. And we always thought that that was going to be financially the hardest time. Then they got older and they have like expensive, they’re not even hobbies, it’s their life. The older one is studying to be a photographer, that requires equipment and a lot of driving around.

Our youngest son has a placement at a therapy farm, which we have to pay for, which is absolutely amazing, the best thing in his life. I don’t begrudge them a single penny. However, every time he goes ‘I’d like to do another day at the farm’, my toes start to curl and I think, oh my God, I’m going to need more money.

So I had these two things going on at the same time, a realization that the things I did to earn money, potentially were making me not well and made it harder for me to earn money.

And also, ideally I’d like to earn more money. So that was by January, I’d cleared out my diary. I had nothing.

January - Disappointing Sales Inspired New Products

January, besides two retainer clients that literally added up to about a thousand pounds a month, I had nothing in my diary of how am I going to make money, but this ever-growing requirement to make money.

So I thought courses, passive income, this is where the money’s at.

I took my Irresistible Offers course, gave it an update and a polish up.

I knew it wasn’t as irresistible as it could be because it was trying to do too much. So I’ve restructured it so that it’s much more focused on making one single offer as irresistible as possible, and then there’s a bonus section on how do you apply that to your whole offer lineup?

So it was much more focused, more specific, and I thought it would sell better.

I put on a live round of that as well, and I think I might’ve had a price increase at the same time, so there were lots of reasons to buy. And I was just really confident that I was going to do this live round of Irresistible Offers and that will bring in all the money I needed for January. And then that would give me some breathing space to figure out, ‘okay, what am I doing in February and March?’

So I did that and about five people bought and made me about £500.

And I was still really glad that I updated the course and I really enjoy doing the live round and lots of people that had bought it before re-engaged with the course. So I’m pleased that I did it, but it was not the financial rescue package that I had imagined it was going to be.

So once again, I’m staring at my calendar and my bank balance going, ‘oh, I don’t really know, how am I going to overcome this?’

First of all, I figured out, I can do the one-to-one copywriting, that’s fine. Most of the time I’m not on Zoom. I could get that down to 30 minutes. So I’ve kind of restructured that so that I was happy selling that.

I had Copy Consults to sell, which didn’t involve me being on Zoom either. You submit the copy to me, and then I do a Loom video. So those two really worked well for me.

And I thought instead of worrying about how many of these am I going to sell in the next few months, it would make sense to do a kind of short promotional period of like, I think it was three days, where you could get a discount on buying them if you bought them to use between now and Easter.

So the old way of doing it, I would just, the price was the price, and I would not know from one month to the next, or even one week to the next, what was going to be in my diary and what the cashflow looked like.

Instead I decided to carve my year up into chunks of time my brain understood, which wasn’t 90 days and it wasn’t months. It was January to Easter, then Easter to the Summer holidays, then September to Christmas. And for each one of those three parts of the year, at the start, I’ll do a two or three-day flash sale where you can buy my services at a preferential rate because you’re committing to using it by the cut-off date of the end of that period.

So I tried that at the end of January, at the same time as kind of inventing a hybrid service where you could work with me for the day on your copy and it’s called Virtual Day. I’m not going to talk about it too much because you can just go to the sales page to see it, it’s called Virtual Day with Laura. And that sold like gangbusters, that has done really well.

And I’ve done about six of those days so far. I have absolutely loved them. It’s based on Elizabeth Goddard’s Day of Voxer model* (watch this free training for more info*), but kind of, I don’t know, made my own as well. It’s more intense, more collaborative than a Day of Voxer would be if you’re familiar with that. So it’s kind of like my own hybrid version of a model and I absolutely love it.
(* these are both affiliate links which means if you buy something from Lizzy I may get a thank you commission).

So I come up with this idea of building in natural urgency to work for buying my one-to-one services, plus added in a brand new one-to-one service as well. And sold that towards the end of January and had my best month ever in my business.

I think I’ve been running the business for seven years. Love getting the little Thrivecart* notifications, they’re like, boom, boom, boom. And I remember watching those and thinking, ‘oh, that’s what I thought would happen when I updated the Irresistible Offers course. I thought I’d get all of these sales notifications and January would be sorted, but turns out that wasn’t what I needed.
(* also an affiliate link)

So that accounted for January, my best financial month ever. It was over eight and a half thousand pounds, which is the most I’ve ever made in a month. But what excited me more was I knew I could do that again.

I can do that three times a year. I can say, here’s my calendar until the next bank holiday or to the next break, book in. And then also I’ve got breaks built-in, like I’m not working over Easter. I’m not working in the Summer. I won’t work in December. So I’ve got natural breaks in my workload built in. I know what work is coming up. I can see it all booked in my calendar already. So it’s repeatable. I haven’t totally screwed myself by overbooking and promising to work five days a week on one-to-one stuff. It’s really because I set the calendar ahead of time, the availability ahead of time, before putting stuff on sale, it’s just all beautifully arranged in my calendar in a completely manageable way.

So I’m really, really pleased with that. And that was the thing I was most excited to share. So January went great. And not only sort of secured my income for January, but also set up, you know, like a new, to me, it feels like a new way of selling what I sell, plus a new service.

High on the excitement of January, I got into February and created a new course.

I’ve had the idea for this course, which is now called Scribbles for ages.

Someone said to me, ‘how do you create these courses so quickly?’ And honestly, the answer is it’s taken me like five years to make this course, not to actually make the course material and sell it. To make the course material and sell it, took two or three days, but the concept of it has been there for so long, where I knew I wanted to be able to teach people the ways that they could put their personality into their writing. I can do it when I am with them and I’m looking at what they’ve written and I can come up with ideas of how, like, ‘what if we add this in’, ‘what if we add that in’, but to actually put that in a course where it was theory that people learnt and then applied, it just completely escaped me I didn’t know how to do that.

But I think because the money pressure was off and I had some time in my diary, I relaxed enough that it kind of, I don’t know if anybody else gets this experience or whether it sounds a bit weird, but it kind of downloads as the full package. You just feel like, oh, that’s the content and the structure.

I use Notion to capture all of my notes. So I already had a section in Notion that wasn’t called Scribbles. It was called ‘that course that teaches people to write with their personality’ or something like that. And it had loads of disparate notes in it. Just things that had been occurring to me over the last year or two that I knew kind of belonged in this course, but I didn’t know how it worked, what the structure looked like, what the flow was.

So I had gathered quite a lot of material in there and then I could just see, ‘oh, this is the structure. This is how it’s gonna work.’ So I reorganized all of that in Notion and then, so this is how the course happens really quickly, I’ve got the rough outline, I know pretty much what’s going to go in the course and I know what the outcome’s going to be.

So I’m not selling something that doesn’t exist at all, but the actual course isn’t ready for people to log in and look at. So I get it that far. And then I write the sales page because the sales page, for me helps shape what the course is going to be. I start writing. This is the most magical thing that people really want.

And then that helps make me make the course fulfill the promises that’s on the sales page. So I write the sales page, put it live and see how many people buy it.

Now I have definitely done this before. And I remember when I was like, ‘this is going to be perfect’, and I even had someone else’s audience for this. It was for a very specific business niche and they had this huge free Facebook group and we were going to do this cross-promotion and I did it and we got nothing. No takers. So of course I wasn’t going to develop the product. Well, maybe like five people, but it wasn’t going to be worth my while to develop it.

So also I don’t want you to think that every time I do this, it’s a massive success because sometimes they’re just, I think they’re going to be great and they just aren’t. But this time around, I put the sales page up and it did sell. It sold, I know I wanted to sell a hundred and it sold like 97. It was so close.

Which is enough, definitely enough. My cutoff was like 25, 30 would make it worth my while to make the course. And then a hundred was like, this is how many I’d really love to sell.

After I got above that 30, that was it. I’m like, I’m in, I can record the material now. So I’ve recorded the material as one whole long video, because that’s the quickest way to get it done and get it up so that people can see, if they’re really eager and they want to access the course. So I pre-sold the course, told them the course would be available on Friday.

If you are one of the people that bought it. Thank you very much. And then the course was ready on Friday or the full training was really on the Friday. And then my next stage is to chop the video down. I’ll have a version of the full video because some people just prefer to sit, and I prefer that.

I prefer to sit and have the full-length training rather than next lesson, next lesson, next lesson. But some people like it in modules. So I’m going to chop up that full-length video into modules as well. I’ve got a couple of ideas, some principles that might be helpful. Definitely want to add some examples into the course.

So then when I’ve upgraded it, the ways that I want to upgrade it, I will then put it back on sale, evergreen at the increased price. So that’s what happened at the start of February, and that means that February is shaping up quite nicely as well. It won’t be, like it won’t be as fabulous as January unfortunately. It might, I mean, anything can happen in the next three days.

But I’ve gone, I think I’ve just gone over 6,000 pounds for February and there’s a few days left. So, I’m really, really pleased with that as well, because also in my pattern in my business previously had been, if there was one amazing month, then the next one was half as much as I needed. So it never, you know, over a few months, it kind of always leveled out to be roughly the same income.

So it’s nice to have raised it one month and then continued on this like raised level the next month. And that is kind of it. It does feel a bit weird to just like share this overly personal stuff about my life and my business and income and all the rest of it.

But when I was first starting out, like when I mean really first starting out, even like when I was still in a job, Googling ‘how do people make money from home’, other people’s accounts of what they were doing and how it was working out for them, was massively helpful to me when there was no way I could afford to buy into a course or anything to teach me how to do it.

So that’s like a big driver for me I think too. It cost me nothing to spend 20 minutes on here and just like tell you everything that’s gone on in the last four or five months. But I think it will probably be helpful to at least some people. And that, you know, for me, the beginnings of my business came from reading other people’s blogs and watching their videos about how they do what they do and the progress that they’ve made.

So that’s kind of where I’m coming from with it. And also, I know loads of you were on a very similar, fixed time budget, so it’s interesting to see what’s possible. I think this is quite a myth that everyone’s able to work more than they are. Then I ask around and we’re all juggling, like multiple caring responsibilities alongside other stuff going on in our life.

So I think it’s sort of interesting to talk about that aspect of it. I will do more if this is interesting, then I’ll do more updates like this. I’ve not been planning on doing it all the time. I think maybe, as I’m chopping the year up into thirds and my next installment runs from Easter to the summer, maybe it would make sense to do one other installment just after Easter, when I’ve done a sale then, and then another one in summer. So I think that will sort of naturally plan out. And then, another couple of people have asked about like how I put together the courses, and I was thinking of doing like a really short inexpensive course about how I come up with ideas for courses and put them together. It will be like nine pounds, just a small amount, because I feel like it’s bigger than a free thing and there’s no reason why I do it for free because it’s not going to sell you on to anything else. But, if it’s useful to other people, then I’ll make a short course about it.

And another short course on creating natural urgency in your, natural urgency or natural scarcity, because, I like what I’m doing with the one-to-one services, and I’ve got a couple of ideas of how I build that into the courses that I sell as well. And I’ve tried selling things on evergreen, where there is no natural urgency or scarcity and it is hard.

So I’m really interested at the moment in exploring and trying out different ways for myself, also exploring how other people are doing it. So I feel like there’s some sort of future content or course or something around that, and possibly some sort of behind-the-scenes thing about the team that I have supporting me to do this. I don’t employ anyone directly, but I have a business coach, a mindset coach, social media manager. I have absolutely fabulous Amber who was watching this and her team. And that might be interesting to see how they all fit together and how that works.

So that might be where this goes in the future, but only if that’s going to be interesting to anyone watching otherwise, it’s just me talking to myself on my phone and that’s weird.

All right, thank you very much for watching. Hope it was helpful. Go and enjoy a fabulous weekend. Bye.