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This blog post is kinda self indulgent and it's very much a mixture of personal life stuff and business. I write them mostly for me, but I do enjoy reading other people's annual review/roundup type posts, so I'm going to continue to publish them ?
- Finally moved to Burton Joyce – this super cute little village just outside Nottingham that I accidentally found/manifested on a rail replacement bus in summer 2014.
- Received our wedding photos. You can take a look here.
- 2 membership sites that I'd built in OptimizePress/OptimizeMember launched: Jo Bendle's Wildly Successful Society and Ebonie Allard's Misfit to Maven 360.
- 18th February was my 1 year anniversary of switching to ConvertKit! ?
- Got an undercut (aka shaved the side of my head). I've wanted to for years and years – now the wedding was over and I can't imagine ever applying for a job, I finally felt ready to take the plunge!
- Went on a mini UK/Ireland Tegan and Sara tour: London, Manchester, Bristol, Birmingham and Dublin, taking me up to 56 shows total. Realised how cool it is that I'm just being a tourist in Dublin with a friend I met at a Tegan and Sara show 9 years ago.
- Quit my (very) part time job working as a Hospitality Host & Receptionist at Nottingham Arena. I was mostly doing it for occasional free tickets to shows for myself and friends, but it just wasn't worth the hassle any more.
- Went to my then coach (Makenna Held)'s event, Practical Magic Live, in San Antonio, Texas.
Had the most wonderful time hanging out, co-working and putting the world to rights in the informal client retreat that followed.
- Raised my hourly rate from $65 to $100 in one go. Within a week I had multiple clients at the new rate.
- Created a ‘Is ConvertKit Right For You?' Quiz using Outgrow, which I got as an AppSumo deal. Had 85 people take it, many of whom have gone on to sign up for ConvertKit through my affiliate link.
- Decided to have a stall selling crystals at the Burton Joyce monthly village community market. Went once, sold like £20 worth. Have not been back. Have a huge box of crystals in our shed.
- Was visited by the lovely Lottie Ryan – long term friend + client.
- Had a really good week.
- Went to Denise Duffield-Thomas‘ Lucky Bitch Money Mindset Tour in London and hung out with lots of new and old friends.
- Made the decision (very quickly and easily) to close The Pillow Fort. It was time. (Pickaweb subsequently messed up my site and reverted it back to an older pre-closed version ?, but hey ho, it is closed).
May was a huge turning point in my business. Prior to May 2017 I made maybe £3500 ($4600) a month. My best month to date was March 2017 at £5600 ($7500). In May I made juuuust shy of £10,000 ($13,300).
- I joined Rebecca Tracey's Create Your Signature Program (now called Create Your First Group Program). It was honestly one of the hardest and most intense things I've ever done in my business. But I 100% committed to the process and I was richly rewarded….
- I launched ConvertKit Rockstars (my ConvertKit strategy + tech group program) and quickly sold out all 15 spots in the beta round.
- I did a mini series of Facebook Lives for the launch of ConvertKit Rockstars which converted really well.
- I found out I was one of ConvertKit's top 25 affiliates!
- I fiiiinally set up a portfolio page for my OptimizePress work.
- I bought myself a shiny new Lenovo Yoga laptop.
- Did a Facebook Live with Tarzan Kay for her Email Empire course launch.
- Went to see the UK premiere of Unrest (about life with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome/ME), thanks to an excellent bit of Facebook Ad targeting – I supported the Kickstarter campaign years ago! It was actually pretty emotional to watch because I was pretty much house-bound with the same chronic illness only 4/5 years ago. (I still have CFS/ME, but I've structured my life so it's pretty manageable).
- Went to see Nashville in Concert. It was long sold out before I heard about it, but I manifested us 2 tickets on the day of the show when my intuition nudged me just to check on the site again.
- Went to Durham for a long weekend to see Zanna, Don't twice – our favourite musical. We first saw it at Edinburgh Fringe in 2015 and this is the next opportunity we've had in the UK! I cannot even with how much I love it.
- Launched Get Shit Done Club, my first joint project with Emma – we went from idea to launch to paying customer in less than 24 hours!
- Found Liquidlast Liner by MAC to be a worthy replacement for the now discontinued Seventeen Tattoo Me eyeliner. Phew.
- Emma launched her Unlimited VA package to much intrigue.
- Had my best month yet (£11,400 / $15,200).
- Sent a completely ‘from the heart' affiliate email for Denise Duffield-Thomas' Money Bootcamp launch (which I'd planned to sit out). Made 2 sales and joint-won the most affiliate sales bonus prize that day! I'm still quite proud of this email, especially the line “(Honesty time – I'm wading through the swipe copy for affiliates… I'm not quite sure what's going on and I don't just want to give you swipe copy… so this is going to now turn into a ramble from my heart.)“
- Had the idea for Rock Your Tech Specialism download fully formed into my head. “Oh crap, it's go time. I've got to do this right now!” (knowing September was going to be a killer month with client launches anyway).
- I won $500 from SamCart's No Bad Vibes launch scratchcard!
September was a really, really, really great month, and a really, really hard month. There were more tears than the rest of the year combined, but there were probably also more business highlights also. September is notoriously long and hard because everyone launches in September. I was braced for that. What I wasn't prepared for was the insanity of adding my own launch (Rock Your Tech Specialism) into that mix.
- Went on a short helicopter ride over Nottinghamshire.
- Won the One Woman Shop 2017 Solopreneur Success Bundle affiliate leaderboard ($150 bonus), and 3 of the 5 individual top sales days ($45 in Starbucks vouchers).
- Ran my first ‘proper' webinar: How niching down my VA biz on a specific tech software made me over $60k in 16 months (and made several sales on live which was incredibly exciting!)
- Launched Rock Your Tech Specialism ? (which has the cutest branding you have ever seen)
- Realised how much bigger Rock Your Tech Specialism was going to be. It was like I'd finally uncovered this huge passion and purpose that I didn't know was there.
- Started renting an office in Burton Joyce.
(It still looks like this – 3+ months later – part of the long game life plan!)
- Created a new freebie: 5 Mistakes You’re Making On Your Tech VA Website
- Went on the most incredible trip of my life for Tegan and Sara's The Con X tour: 7 shows in 8 days: LA, San Francisco, Portland, Seattle, Vancouver and Calgary, taking my total show count to 63. We started the trip in LA (40°C / 101°F) and ended it just over a week later in Calgary (-6°C / 21°F). I didn't know it was possible to do that much, and make so many memories that will last a lifetime in such a short period of time.
(My 60th show in Portland!)
(Dragging Emma around Calgary at a quicker pace than she wanted to go because we were only there for a day.)
- Visited the Friends set at Warner Bros studios in LA (this has been on my Be, Do, Have list for years and years).
- Saw raccoons in Stanley Park, Vancouver!
- Got my first (proper) tattoo in LA to commemorate The Con X tour. I've wanted a Tegan and Sara tattoo since I was about 15, and I finally had the perfect idea and it was the perfect time! It's on my outside ankle and it's part of the artwork from The Con album and tour.
- Recorded a call with Rebecca Tracey from The Uncaged Life from a hotel in Portland for her Uncage Your Business launch which I'm a very proud affiliate for.
- Did a mini training called The Lazy Guide to Affiliate Marketing. Had great fun with the branding again.
- Launched ConvertKit Rockstars DIY just in time for the early bird to coincide with Black Friday/Cyber Monday.
- Went to the London Lesbians Who Tech London Summit. Realised how much more significant being self employed is to my identity most of the time than being a queer woman. Considering going to the San Francisco Summit in March 2018 (no, not just because Tegan and Sara are the keynote speakers ?)
- Attended the first Youpreneur Summit, hosted by Chris Ducker. This was the same weekend as Lesbians Who Tech and my focus/time was mostly spent there, not at the Youpreneur Summit. However, I very much enjoyed the speakers I did catch, and have already bought my ticket for next year. We also all received early copies of Chris' next book, Rise of the Youpreneur. I'm hoping to write a review blog post at some point because it's a very interesting and insightful book overall, with some very silly (in my opinion) things sprinkled in.
- Confirmed first proper JV webinar with SamCart: How To Make Your First $1,000 In Sales (In Any Niche) In Just 14 Days (sign up! It's happening 4th January!)
- Went to my client, Catherine Watkin‘s Selling from the Heart Live and supported as crew. Experimented (successfully!) in Facebook Live streaming portions of it.
- Officially crossed the $100k revenue threshold for the year ??????
- We basically took off the entire month to go on a Royal Caribbean cruise around the Eastern Caribbean. However, we booked this before Tegan and Sara announced their North American tour… so taking off 2 weeks in October and all of December has been quite stressful from a business momentum perspective.
(Taken in Labadee, Haiti on 15th December!)
Miscellaneous Notable Things from 2017
- We have taken off over 12 weeks for trips and holidays/vacations. (Want to learn how to do that? Click here to be notified as soon as my ‘How to Take Off A Month as a Service Provider' training is released!)
- I received endless signs from the Universe that I should focus more on affiliate marketing (I've only ever half-arsed it to date).
- Let go of all my remaining ongoing VA clients except for 2 (and a half) and totally stopped referring to myself as a VA.
- Started working with Taylor Manning in various capacities (firstly in her membership-style mastermind, then in various group programs, courses and a little bit of 1:1). I can't really put into words the immense amount of support, encouragement, strategy and inspiration I've received from her this year and it would be remiss of me not to mention my having worked with her in light of my first $100k year.
- Since moving to Burton Joyce we've been on near daily walks by the river. It's been a game changer.
- Since moving to Burton Joyce in January, I have not been to the doctor once. This is quite significant for someone with a chronic illness (mild Chronic Fatigue Syndrome/ME). The pace of countryside life is really suiting me.
(This isn't absolutely all of them, but some are no longer relevant or have been superseded).
- Why I lowered my membership price by 71%
- How do I choose a tech system to specialise in? I love them all!
- How (and why!) to write great tech tutorial blog posts
- Is getting certified in a tech system worth it as a virtual assistant?
- I wonder what would happen if …?
- Selling your first product with SamCart in under 29 mins!
- How do you do on the ‘Obsessed Newbie’ Test?
- Idea to launch to paying customers in 24 hours
- How to send a ConvertKit sequence to a subscriber again (automatically!)
- How to integrate Demio and ConvertKit
- 3 ways to put videos into ConvertKit emails
- How to get your formatting nice in ConvertKit emails
- How to Use ‘In Sequence’ Segments NOT tags in ConvertKit
- How to use BriteVerify for checking spammy email addresses in ConvertKit
- The top 3 mistakes people make with ConvertKit forms!
- 5 ways to stop annoying your ConvertKit subscribers
- How to deal with accidental unsubscribers in ConvertKit
- How to Run Challenges in ConvertKit
- How to add (responsive) video to a ConvertKit landing page
- How to Clean Your ConvertKit List (The Unscary Way!)
Courses and Programs Launched
- Collective Momentum (starting January 2018)
- ConvertKit Rockstars (group program)
- ConvertKit Rockstars DIY
- The Lazy Guide to Affiliate Marketing
- Get Shit Done Club
- Rock Your Tech Specialism
- Launch Your First Tech Service This Weekend
- 16 week 1:1 Coaching/Strategy Program
- ConvertKit Club (restructured + repriced)
I've also done a huge variety of 1:1 work including: launch management/strategy, OptimizePress, ConvertKit, VA-type work, strategy calls and more.
I completed my GoodReads 2017 Reading Challenge (15 books) in mid-December – yay! Here are some of them:
It's been a really significant year for me, and I think I've really started to find my groove with (quickly) creating courses, trainings and programs, not just offering 1:1 work. I've gotten a lot better at following my intuition and acting (again, quickly), on ideas that come to me – usually in my morning shower!
April 2018 will be this business' 3rd birthday and I'm extremely proud that I've roughly/almost doubled my revenue year on year.
How was 2017 for you?