Hey everyone! I have no idea why I used a dog picture for this report. It just...felt right haha.
If you’re new around here, I started tracking my blogging income through these income reports in mid-2016. This is a great way for me to keep an eye on my progress of doing M$M full-time, and it’s also a great way for you to follow along as well if you’re thinking of starting an online business!
I can’t wait to look back on these several years from now and see how far the site has come. It’s already been crazy since I randomly started this site almost 3 years ago.
On a personal level – life is freaking awesome right now. I feel like I’ve been able to create a really enjoyable business while making great money at the same time.
A lot of you have wanted to start your own blogs after seeing the success that I’ve had, and I highly recommend it. If I hadn’t taken a shot on M$M, I would still be stuck in a career I didn’t really enjoy very much.
Just understand – this isn’t easy in any way or for the faint of heart, and definitely not something you should immediately quit your day job for. Most people quit blogging long before they actually “make it.”
It takes time to build a business like this, but if you have talent and a good message/story, it is possible to do well.
Take a look at my free blog setup tutorial. You’ll have your own blog set up in just 10-15 minutes, and will receive a lower website hosting price since you’re a M$M reader when you use my exclusive link. As a bonus from my family at Bluehost- you’ll also get a domain name for free ($15 value)!
Have you taken my free blogging course yet?
So far I’ve had 1,200+ people sign up for my blogging course since it debuted in February, and the reviews have been great! Even if you are just thinking about starting a blog or want to figure out how to get more traffic to the one you already have, this will be useful for you.
Everything in the course applies to small business websites that have a blog as well, so there is good value for business owners out there that want more engagement on their sites.
Let’s get to the report…
Something to remember when you look at this income report – I’m self-employed and have to cover expenses, my basically useless health insurance policy (seriously it sucks), and taxes.
I’ve increased the amount that I pay myself recently, which means that I’m paying more Social Security and Medicare taxes than I used to. I also pay quarterly taxes that will probably have to increase next year as well.
Here’s how I made money with my online business this month:
I don't even know what happened in September haha. This past month felt like it went by so fast! Fortunately, I had a great rebound for my business compared to August.
Here's the crazy part - I basically took two weeks off from almost everything (outside of managing client work for the digital marketing side of things).
My wife and I just moved into our new home, and while we're super excited about it...it's also been a bit of a pain logistically.
Originally, we were supposed to move in on September 13th, but because of Hurricane Harvey, it got pushed back all the way to the 27th!
We had already given our apartment notice that we were leaving, so we had to move out on the 21st and move into my mother-in-law's house for about a week. All of our stuff was in a moving truck outside of her house for days.
THEN we moved into the house, and immediately had the floors redone so we've been living in a construction zone.
I'm sitting in a coffee shop writing right now (first world problems I know) because we still don't have internet at home. Kinda hard to run an online business without it haha.
But ultimately, I'm super grateful for my business, our new home, and all of you. I know that my situation in life is pretty special and rare right now. That's never lost on me. 🙂
Let's dig into the monies, shall we?
Digital Marketing Income: $4,469.45
So for those of you that don't know, I run a small digital marketing company from my laptop. I keep it capped at 5 clients (some are seasonal, some aren't) so I can also grow M$M and maintain a good quality of life.
I always battle with the "Should I scale the marketing business?" question, because I think I could really grow a fairly large marketing firm in a short amount of time. Having M$M as a charter project makes getting new clients pretty easy to be honest.
Starting any sales pitch with: "I built a website that reaches over 150,000 people/month in two years with SEO, Facebook marketing, and social media" would make most small business owners' ears perk up.
But, I LOVE my business right now. I'd like to make a ton of money of course, but I want to do it the way I want to do it. Having a bunch of employees and farming out content/services just isn't the path for me. 🙂
That's the cool thing about my marketing side hustle - it can grow as much or as little as I'd like.
The end of the year/beginning of next is when some of my seasonal gigs pick up, so I'll have a nice bump in revenue throughout the end of 2017 and into 2018.
The holidays being here means that I will be super busy, but I'm ready!
Just FYI - the marketing course that I mentioned earlier (you really need to sign up for the waiting list if you're interested in making steady money online) will cover everything you need to know about how I make money this way.
Out of respect for clients’ privacy, I can’t name them on the site or list my rates for specific projects, but you’re always welcome to email me if you are an aspiring digital marketer and want tips or guidance!
MillennialMoneyMan.com Income: $11,082.02
Affiliate income: $5,026.02
Bluehost Blog Hosting: $1,940 (Take a look at my free blog starter guide to set up your own site in 15 minutes or less!)
LendEDU: $1,818.00 <- Over 1,300 M$M readers have used this free rate finder tool so far to search for better student loan interest rates. (Bloggers, I highly recommend that you apply to become a LendEDU affiliate here)
Making Sense of Affiliate Marketing: $157.60 (Read my review of this course that helped me grow my affiliate income to over $5,000 per month!)
Haven Life Insurance: $80 (If you're looking for term life insurance, this company is the bomb)
Online Surveys: $93.00
Personal Capital: $100.00
Amazon affiliate: $10.02
Become a Pinterest Virtual Assistant Today! Course: $801.00
Staff writing: $2,400.00
I had a big month of staff writing!
One of my gigs had been put on pause for a little bit, but now it's back up and running again. I also managed to pick up a sweet one-time writing assignment for an energy company in Texas, so that was pretty cool as well.
People always ask me about this - I don't seek this type of work out. The companies I have worked with contacted me because they like my "conversational" writing style (basically just means totally informal) and were impressed with the site.
Traffic and ad revenue were slightly down last month, but it really wasn't too surprising.
With everything we had going on at the beginning of the month with hurricane recovery and moving, I just wasn't able to be as engaging on social media as usual (which is where most of my traffic currently comes from).
This will change at the end of the year as things settle down and I'm able to focus on my business again. October has already brought a nice traffic bump to kick off the fourth quarter.
Moving forward, I'm also going to start focusing more on SEO to grow my presence on the ol' Google machine.
Creating posts to rank isn't necessarily my favorite kind of writing for M$M, but it's just time to branch out and take advantage of some subjects/keywords that I know I can do well on.
Here's ad revenue and traffic for September:
Cool stuff for M$M:
We're adjusting to living in a home instead of an apartment
I can already tell that I'm going to be spending a lot more time tinkering with things at our house than I thought I would, but it's all good. My wife and I have really sacrificed a lot to get to where we are now, so getting into our new home was a nice feeling.
We've already been putting in new landscaping and have done A LOT of shopping. A lot...of shopping. So much shopping. I've been to Lowes and Home Depot more times in the last week than I have my entire life.
Ugh (it's kinda fun though).
I mentioned earlier that we were having the floors done after we moved in, which is a sage tip for anyone that is thinking about building a new home!
You do give up some of the convenience of moving into a fully-completed home when you go outside of the builder for big-ticket items, but doing floors with another company saved us roughly $10,000 - $15,000.
One last thing I'm excited about - I'll finally have a real office! In our apartment, we had a computer set up on top of a dresser and I mainly worked from the couch while doing podcast interviews from my wife's vanity haha.
Now, we have a nice study at the front of the house with french doors that I can close at will. So stoked.
FinCon is coming!
For you non-financial blogger types, FinCon is an awesome convention for people that do what I do for a living. We basically all get together once a year and learn how to grow our reach, create better content for our readers, and nerd out about money.
I've made a bunch of cool friends online in the blogger world, and so it's going to be fun seeing a lot of them in real life haha. I haven't been the best about networking with other bloggers since I started the site, so I'm going to try to do a better job of it this year.
The sweet thing about FinCon this year is that it's in Dallas, so Coral and I are going to drive up. I guess it will be like a mini-vacation for us even though October is going to be a busy month for the business.
If you are going to FinCon, let me know in the comments!
The Make Money Marketing Course will probably be finished in about 3-4 weeks.
Unfortunately, the hurricane and us moving kinda blew me up from a productivity standpoint in September.
But luckily now that we are in the house and I have an office, I can really focus on recording and then getting the course out for beta testing to a few of my blogger/marketer friends.
If you signed up for the waitlist, you'll get updates as we get closer to the launch!
Super grateful as always
Every day, I get to wake up and do something that I truly love. I always like to take the last part of my income reports and just say...thank you. Without readers like you, I would probably be doing something that I didn't really enjoy too much.
I hope all of you have a great October filled with success and happiness!