Hey and welcome to Instructions Not Included, the series about me, Ryan McLean, as I try and make a decent living online. In this episode, I’m going to talk a little bit about where I think we want to be in 3 years’ time because I’ve got some clarity around that. As well as becoming a content business.
If you’ve been following me for any amount of time, you know I’m constantly changing strategies and so, this may be just another one of those changes or it may be a new direction moving forward.
First, let’s talk about where we want to be in 3 years’ time. I talked to you in the previous episode about looking at my business in terms of where I want to be in 3 years’ time and designing my business so that I can achieve those things in 3 years’ time.
I see so many people starting businesses not thinking about the future and basically finding themselves trapped in the future because their business isn’t designed to give them the life that they want.
For example, Ben the buyer’s agent, he makes a great deal of money. He has a really solid income from his business. However, his business is very reliant on him, very reliant on a lot of client interaction. If he wanted to work less or didn’t want to be a buyer’s agent anymore, in order to get himself out of the business, he would need to hire sales people.
He would need to hire people to manage clients. It would just be very difficult because then he’d be managing those people, which is still a job in and of itself. So in terms of his business, it isn’t really a business where it can just be managed and he can go and do what he wants.
He does have a rental agency on the side that I think he partnered with his mom in order to start that. And that, he doesn’t have to do a lot in because his mom runs it. So he started a business, he’s not the only person in it.
Someone else is running it and he basically doesn’t have to play a large day-to-day role in it. So that’s 2 examples of 2 different types of businesses that generate different outcomes for you. Really, you need to think at the start; okay, what business do I want?
Anyway, to get to the point, I talked about thinking about where I want to be in 3 years and trying to design a business around that. Well, something that me and my wife have always been inspired about is kind of this tiny house living, traveling in a caravan or a motorhome – even thinking back to 4 or 5 years ago, when I used to work for Alpha Pharm, a large pharmaceutical company, we always talked about getting a caravan.
Potentially doing some travel around Australia. Even quitting my job to do it or maybe just getting a caravan and doing weeks away in it. So, we’ve been talking about this for 4 or 5 years and it’s gone through a lot of different phases – from caravans to tiny houses.
Now, we’re kind of on the vein of it’d be awesome to get a camper van that could be my second car rather than having the little second car that I have. Sell that, have the camper van as our second family car. But have it so that it could seat 5 people, so we could all fit in it. And also, sleep 5 people and then we could do trips away, just for the weekend or something like that.
We’re not going to live out of a camper van with 5 of us. That would probably just be insane. But that idea of being able to get away whenever you want is something that is really important to us and something that we definitely want to work towards.
I’m thinking with my business in the future, I definitely want to me more hands off. My ideal business, I would be able to take basically a week’s holiday every single month would be my goal so I could work for 3 weeks and then have a week off and do something fun with the family.
We home school my daughter. We may be sending my son to school next year, so that might change things. But we basically have the freedom and the potential, if we decide to home school our kids, to be traveling whenever we want because we can just still do school while we travel. That’s pretty cool. Basically, I’m thinking about that and I was talking – no, I wasn’t talking, I was writing down. I was talking to myself.
I was writing down in my notepad the sort of things that would make a perfect website or perfect business for me.
The perfect website in terms of – this will lead into me talking about my content strategy – is something where I can create content for the website and I can help people through the content that I create. It’ll be a website that would generate no incoming emails for me to deal with, so no customer interaction, basically, there. A third party website or I’d recommend third party products would be the ideal. So things like Amazon affiliate sites, AdSense websites. Sites where you recommend other information products and stuff like that.
Ideally, you would just be an information hub and then you’d go ahead and recommend people to other places. So, in a perfect world, that’s my perfect site because it’s something that I can work on building and I can create content when I want, but it’s something that I don’t need to actively manage so it gives me the freedom to go away when I want.
It’s not really going to affect my website. Whereas, at the moment, in 2 days, we’re heading off to Sydney for a week. I’m going to have to keep monitoring my emails for things related to On Property. Maybe new customers, maybe customer issues, etc., etc.
Basically, in a perfect world, I’d be rid of that and I just have these probably niche websites that I would run on the side and build those up over time. In a perfect world, I’d also have websites where I could pay writers to help me write content for those sites so I wouldn’t be doing it all myself and it wouldn’t be all built on me. Because at the moment, in terms of my content empire, all the websites that I have, it’s all built on me and the content that I create. So in a perfect world, I would have websites where I could hire people to write for me and that would be a viable option.
Thinking 3 years into the future, and this leads me into the content strategy and things like that, is the business that I would like to have is a very hands off business, but it’s something that makes sense in terms of I can continually build this because I continually add in content and the more content I add, the more money I can make, which can pay for more content. So it kind of got this perpetual machine feel to it. However, there wouldn’t be ongoing management, which is a thing that I want to get away from.
Now, looking at my current situation and where I am now, I’m definitely not there yet. I don’t own enough money to be able to take a week off every 3 weeks. Firstly, we couldn’t afford the holidays. Secondly, I need to be working in order to generate enough money because I just need to kind of make things happen. So I’ve still got a bit of a ways to go to get to where I want to be.
At the moment, and I think I talked about it in the previous episode, On Property kind of generates around $40,000 a year through my own products and $40,000 a year through recommending Ben the buyer’s agent. I would really like to see that continue. I have made some changes to my products so On Property is no longer a yearly recurring subscription.
It’s just a one-off payment of $299. Property Tools is now a one-off payment of $99 and you get 12 months access. I’ve moved from a membership model, which I feel like wasn’t necessarily working for me to a one-off sales model, which I’m hoping will have less friction and, therefore, be able to generate more consistent sales for me – things that I can predict. It sounds strange to move away from a membership model where you think will be more predictive to a single sales model.
However, when I look at generating $30,000 a year or $40,000, I look at really, I need to get 2 sales per month for On Property. No, not 2 sales per month, 2 sales per week. So that’d be 100 sales in a year or $300, that’s $30,000. And then I have Property Tools on the side as well as eBooks and courses that will kind of make up the extra $10,000. So, $40,000 would be covered there if I can get 2 sales per week.
So I have changed On Property from a blog that also has products into On Property is now this membership and I also have a blog to help market the membership site. That change has just taken place – haven’t had any sales yet. It will take time to work out; is this having an impact that I want and is it going to generate the income that I want? In terms of recommending people to Ben, we’ve got a lot of great strategies. We worked together on Friday.
We got a lot of great strategies to send people to him. Basically, we’re in this situation at the moment where I can send him more leads than he can deal with. And so, we’re just working on how to communicate better with each other so that I can deliver him the amount of people that he needs and that he can handle and help while maximizing the return on investment for both of us. So, not sending him too many people like we did with the webinar a couple of months ago, where he had 100 strategy session requests.
That’s an hour of his time each, so even if he works full time for 2.5 weeks just to make strategy sessions, 40-hour weeks, we would get through those 100 people.
It will take him 2.5 weeks, that’s doing nothing else. So 100 people is not really viable. And so, we’re working on strategies to basically maximize the quality of people that are coming through so he can work with less people but they have a better chance of converting into a sale. And then also, just managing it so that he’s getting just enough – not too little, not too many. And so, we’re working on the communication there.
Hopefully, in a perfect world, $40,000 from him would be great. And then, I’d also like to build up my content website. This is things like Public Speaking Power. This is things like my niche website. I’ve got an audio book website. I’ve got a website about podcasting. Each of these makes a little bit of money. I think Public Speaking Power makes $50 a month or something like that. The goal for these sites were basically to build them up where they could maybe make $20,000 a year within the next 12 months. And so, we’ve got $80,000 coming from On Property, but then we’ve got $20,000 coming from these niche websites.
The goal towards as we get to the 3-year mark, would basically be to have a sustainable income coming from websites that don’t require email assistance, don’t require ongoing customer support, that sort of stuff. So 3 years’ time down the track, that’s the goal. So I’ll be creating a lot of blogs, a lot of audio, a lot of reviews, all of this sort of stuff so that I can make affiliate commissions, be diversified in the affiliate things that I recommend. So I’ll have lots of different income streams coming through. And so, they’re more protected and also, that it’s more passive.
That’s kind of where I want to be in 3 years’ time as well as the strategy for getting there. At the moment, On Property is still my biggest website, so that needs to play an important role in it. But overtime, I would love to see these new sites do even better. That way, we could even change the strategy for On Property and just recommend Ben or go the advertising route or do whatever we want with it. We’ve got the potential there to do what we want with On Property if we have other income sources.
So that’s where I’m at in my business. That’s my goal for the next 3 years. I hope that you’ll follow me for the next 3 years and see how this happens. And hopefully, in 3 years’ time, I will have the camper van, we’ll be going on weekend trips. I’ll be having a week off every 4 weeks and I’ll be living the life that I want. We’ll see how it goes.
Life never works out as planned, but we’re going to try for it and see what happens. That’s it for me and my business. Go ahead and work on your business and just remember; design a business that’s going to give you the lifestyle that you want, rather than just creating a business and hoping that the lifestyle will come in the future because you might create this perpetual machine because as businesses get bigger, they feed on themselves and they require so much more.
Just be careful when you’re starting out. Design a business that’s going to give you the life that you want. That’s it for me. Until next time, if you want instructions, go and buy some furniture.