“I’ll give you $50,000 + 50% of the revenue for life.”
That was one of the many offers I received for the 6 figure business I talked about on Monday.
4 hour work week?
I had that business so automated I think it was 4 hour work month. All physical products were fulfilled by a fulfillment center in Ohio, all customer support was outsourced for $15/hour to a really awesome Canadian company, all digital sales were fulfilled via autoresponder/Paypal/Clickbank/2Checkout, bookkeeping/accounting was outsourced, Authorize.net merchant account deposits came in every day like clockwork … it was completely hands off.
And that’s where the problems started appearing.
My life went from trying to provide as much possible value as I could to each fan, subscriber, and customer to just wanting to make as much money as possible in as little time as possible.
I was turning into a greedy son of a bitch.
I didn’t know what to do, but I began looking for a way out.
I e-mailed a few people who I respected and told them I’m selling. I had a 50,000 subscriber double opt-in e-mail list, so in addition to the business being completely hands off, I had some really valuable assets on my hands.
I got some really great offers. A few were in the 6 figure range, but I think the $50k + 50% revenue was the best one, simply because it was a guaranteed income stream.
From $10k/month To $0/month
One day (June 15, 2005 – did I ever mention my brain remembers everything?), without consulting anybody about it, I just shut it all down. Profits went from over $10k/month to $0/month.
And I felt relief.
You might think it’s stupid “throwing away” that much money. Many people told me I was insane.
But I “bought” something more important than cash: integrity, dignity, pride.
See, that infoproduct business sold the “how to sell on eBay” type products I talked about in How I Created My First 6 Figure Biz. I had all but stopped selling on eBay by 2005. So I had been selling products teaching people how to sell on eBay while I was no longer actively doing so.
Even though my eBay knowledge was vast (marketing is marketing whether it’s eBay, offline, online, whatever) I didn’t feel good about it and quitting this business was the only respectable plan of action.
Going through that taught me very important lessons about treating customers with respect and providing massive value …
How To Be Ignored
The following seemingly has nothing to do with business, but there’s an important message in these words …
A little over a year ago I was seeing a girl. One day, after she had just spent 2 straight weeks at my house, she gave me a kiss, walked out of my house, and went home.
I called her later that day to say something silly, but she didn’t pick up. No big deal. I don’t expect people to answer every single phone call. So I left a message. And didn’t hear back. A day later I called again, wondering if something had happened. Again, no response. A text went unanswered as well.
I didn’t know whether she died or what was going on. Whatever it was, not knowing and being ignored like that was painful.
The Pursuit Of Every Single Connection
It wasn’t until a week later that I heard from her. I’ll spare you the details. The important thing is that being ignored reinforced an important lesson about how to treat people.
That’s why I’m so adamant about responding to every comment, every e-mail, and every tweet. It’s not a scalable strategy at all, but it feels good to get a response from someone you take the time to connect with, doesn’t it? I know how much I hate being ignored and I did a lot of ignoring that last year of running the automated-beyond-belief eBay how to business.
Will I always be able to respond to every single connection? To be honest: no. But I’ll cross that bridge when the time comes. Today? Yes, I can respond. More than that, I want to respond. It’s not a burden. I don’t feel like I’m wasting time. I love it.
I’m fired up about truly helping 100 people achieve Ridiculously Extraordinary Freedom. At its core, that is what this site is about, after all.
A little while ago I talked about establishing trust. Shutting down a $10k/month business instead of selling it or continuing on with it really boiled down to re-establishing trust with the world … and myself.
Today I do my best to over-deliver. That’s why this blog is free. It’s my payment to you. Yes, How To Live Anywhere is coming June 8, and I will release more products in the future. (Although I have no clue what those will be since I put everything into How To Live Anywhere.) But it doesn’t matter to me whether you ever buy anything or not. If you want to connect, I’m happy to connect. I want to rock your world with what I do here. And in return all I ask is that you keep rocking my world by reading / commenting / tweeting / sharing / e-mailing. :)
How To Be Trustworthy, Ethical, and Still Rock Hard and Live Anywhere
You don’t have to resort to underhanded tactics to make money. Yes, there is millions being made by shady marketing, and you can do that if you want. No judgments, it doesn’t matter to me. (Although you should probably stop reading this blog if that’s your game.)
What does matter to me is getting the message out that being ethical is OK. You can still make a ton of money by being cool. You can live an awesome life and have anything you could ever want. Whether that’s a tiny house in the woods, a 10,000 square foot mansion in Beverly Hills, or a non-stop vagabond live-and-work-anywhere-life full of amazing experiences, it is all possible.
And you know what? Every night, when you lay your head upon your freshly fluffed pillow, you’ll have a great night’s sleep. No stress, no strain, just love.
Note: Results are not typical. I don’t know whether you’ll ever be in a position to shut down a 6 figure business, much less actually run a 6 figure business. Hustle, focus, work hard, and awesome things can happen! ;)