August was a busy month, guys.
First and most important, I launched Fire Drill Podcast, which is my new podcast about six-figure side hustles and early retirement.
My co-host and FIRE BFF Gwen and I recorded 17 episodes in August, which was an absolutely whirlwind.
We launched at the very end of August right before Labor Day with 4 episodes. A little over a week later and we’re already at nearly 5,000 downloads. Thanks for listening, guys!
I went to Lola Retreat in August which was a personal finance conference for women. It was so nice hanging out with a group of inspiring women for a weekend talking about money, life, and everything in between.
I also went on vacation for a week in August (It was awesome!) and I had personal life stuff going on. Not to mention work was crazy.
I’m on top of my sh!t
I manage it all by being really, really organized.
Like lists for lists type of organization.
I organize all of my calendar events in iCal and my handy dandy Panda Planner.
I’ve written about the Panda Planner multiple times so I won’t bore you here but it freaking rocks. Check it out on Amazon and if you do get it, make sure you use the code PANDAFAM for 10% off.
My husband and sister use it too (gift for my sister and my husband bought it as a gift for me). We all love it.
Big THANK YOU to our podcast guests
We want to say thank you to the folks that have agreed to come on the podcast who never intended to go public with their story.
We found many folks pursuing early retirement on Facebook, Reddit and in real life, who (with some convincing) agreed to come on and share their story with all of us. Thank you! We’ve learned so much from you and the detail you provide in the episodes is AMAZING.
We really wanted to share diverse stories and experiences with you all, since there are many different ways to get to FIRE. Plus, not every FIRE person wants to blog. There are so many undiscovered stories.
If you know of someone with a cool FIRE story, email us at firedrillpodcast(at)gmail.com.
If you have no idea what FIRE is, check out this post: The Secret Cult of Young People Who Retire Early.
So far we’ve been successful with that on the podcast and the majority of folks we’ve featured are non-bloggers.
If you’ve already listened to Fire Drill Podcast and liked it, you can help us out BIG TIME by leaving a review in iTunes.
You can do that by searching for the name of the podcast in iTunes search “Fire Drill Podcast” and then clicking the reviews tab. We really appreciate it and read every.single.review.
We also have a Private Facebook Group for listeners to connect and chat with other FIRE folks. Make a request to join the group here.
Recording a Podcast is Super Fun
As you might be able to tell, we have a lot of fun when we record the podcast and we’re always joking and trying to make it as light as possible. Especially, Gwen who is admittedly a lot funnier than me, but I try too.
Doing this podcast doesn’t feel like work. I came home from work every day this month pumped to talk to all of these amazing and inspiring guests we have on the show.
If you want to work with us on the podcast, email us at firedrillpodcast(at)gmail.com.
If you want me to come on your podcast, email me at millennialboss(at)gmail.com. I have a sweet new microphone now and I enjoy it.
Okay now to the meat of this income report.
Blogging Income – $1845
I posted quite a bit in August for someone who recorded 17 episodes, launched a podcast and went on vacation. Part of that is the awesome folks who sign up to be featured on Feature Friday.
Every Friday, I feature someone who paid off debt or launched their own business. It’s super inspirational for us all to learn from them and a get a variety of folks submitting. Learn more about getting featured on Feature Friday here.
Here were August’s Feature Fridays:
- How I Crushed Over $200,000 in Student Loans
- How this Stay at Home Mom Makes 1 Million Per Year with Amazon FBA
- Starting my Own Interior Prop Styling Business
- I Wake Up at 4AM to Teach English Online
I also launched a few career posts:
- How to Write Better Work Emails, Tweets, and Blog Posts with GIFs
- FIRE, Feminism and Money in the Age of the Google Manifesto
- I Want to be an Adventurous Old Woman When I Grow Up
As well as a guest post from Alexis and Fitnancials:
The Bitcoin Series
I also launched the first of a Bitcoin series (because everyone is talking about bitcoin and I had no idea what it really was): How Hackers Stole $12k in Bitcoin from me Overnight
And of course I talked about how I made almost $2,000 online last month.
Here is the breakdown for this month, where I stayed steady at nearly $2,000 in revenue.
I really like how the income is diversified and not coming from just one source.
Organic Traffic is Up – My SEO is Working
There are a few posts on this site I have optimized for SEO.
Namely, the following posts:
- How to Buy a Moissanite Engagement Ring
- How to Deal with Jealous Coworkers
- The Cost of Dying Your Hair Blonde
When I was writing these posts, I used the Neil Patel strategy of figuring out what the questions are that people type into Google regarding these topics, and making those queries all of the headers of the different sections.
It worked. These posts are now driving mega traffic to my site.
Cool to see SEO in action.
I think many bloggers are concerned about writing for SEO (because of quality concerns) but I didn’t write those posts for SEO specifically. I wrote the posts first and then made the titles SEO friendly after.
This is an easy step that anyone can implement.
By the way if you want a great SEO cheat sheet, check out Millennial Money’s list of SEO boosters.
JOIN THE OFF-THE-BLOG EMAIL LIST
If you want my off-the-blog blogging tips (where I share all the good stuff) then join my email list:
I’m Committed to Manual Pinning + Boardbooster + Tailwind
I read Pinteresting Strategies, which is a 90+ page ebook that gives bloggers strategies about creating effective Pinterest pins, using keywords, picking stock photos, and most importantly how, what and when to pin.
In the book, Carly strongly suggests manual pinning. She has a lot of research and Pinterest algorithm knowledge to defend why that method is the best (and better than Boardbooster and Tailwind which I use to schedule out pins in advance).
Carly actually still uses Tailwind and Boardbooster too, for reporting purposes and access to Tailwind Tribes (which is an awesome feature by the way. Thanks to everyone in my tribes who have shared my pins). She just only pins manually.
Have I Seen Results with Manual Pinning?
I’ve been trying manual pinning out for two months now for the majority of my pins, while also still using Boardbooster and Tailwind for a small portion of scheduled pins.
I work full-time and don’t have time to pin all day. I pin once when I wake up, at lunch, and usually twice in the evening. I also have Boardbooster pinning about 10 pins per day for me to my 2 most popular boards.
If you want to setup Boardbooster or Tailwind, my tutorials below are helpful.
- My Boardbooster Tutorial – Getting Setup with Boardbooster
- How to Schedule Pins in Tailwind Step by Step
So far, my traffic from Pinterest is steady and I’m not seeing a boost from manual pinning.
I am spending more time in Pinterest though which has it’s pluses and minuses. The plus is that I know what pins are more popular, I have more control over which of my pins goes where, and I’m more consciously thinking about what I’m pinning.
The con is that I’m obviously spending more time in Pinterest, although it’s not killing me.
The jury is still out on Manual pinning but I think it will pay off in September when people come back from vacations and get back online – i.e. traffic goes up.
Either way, I really recommend Carly’s book because it has a lot of great information for just $32. Pinterest is a crazy traffic driver and very worth it.
Check out Pinteresting Strategies HERE.
Etsy Income – $95
I’ve been neglecting my Etsy listings again this month. Sad face.
As you can see in my expenses list above, I’ve been really pushing it with the promoted listings.
This month I tried paying for Google ads (through Etsy’s Ad Interface) and I bumped up some of the bids on Etsy promoted products.
It clearly worked but not enough to make it worth it (since promoted listings wiped away almost 2/3 of my income).
That being said, I’m learning each time I spend on marketing and I’m not relying on this income for anything but research and fun.
I think at some point in the near future, I’ll want to get more serious about this business.
I’m hoping I have time to address it this next month.
I’m interested in Etsy Digital Downloads
I’m very interested in Etsy Digital Downloads.
I sell a physical product right now that cost me around $500 for 3,000 units of product.
I’ve already made back that money and I still have thousands to sell.
I’m happy with the margin I have here.
It is a pain though sometimes to ship the product.
For example, I went on a week vacation in August and I needed to bring along my product, go to the post office, take time away from my vacation, etc.
Etsy makes it easy because you can print the labels ahead of time but it’s still annoying.
I think my next Etsy product will be digital download. I make the product once and hopefully just let it ride.
I didn’t take on any coaching clients this month and I haven’t really been promoting this service that much.
I actually took down the coaching tab from the main menu.
I’m giving away tons of free information on my new podcast and in these income reports.
That being said, I really get jazzed up about talking to people about their side hustles and I can give more specific advice tailored to you specifically in a coaching call.
If you’re interested, learn more about scheduling a 1×1 with me here.
Past topics clients have talked about include career, financial independence planning, debt, Etsy, blogging, and digital marketing.
Do you have any side hustles stories to share this month? What’s working and what isn’t?