Inspiration for Coders
Welcome to my first ever, monthly income report on the Coders’ Startup.
I’ve decided to create this monthly income reports for two main reasons:
- To serve as a proof of concept and an inspiration to aspiring software entrepreneurs
- To help me hold myself accountable for the growth of my business
Creating and growing an online business has been one of the hardest things I’ve ever done in my life. But along the way I’ve realized that there are things that I have done that have contributed to a disproportionate amount of success.
In other words, not all results are created equally. I could spend 3 hours posting links to articles on Facebook, or I could spend 3 hours setting goals and reflecting on past failures… At the end of those 3 hours, which of the two tasks do YOU think will make more of a difference in 3 months time?
Hint: It’s NOT the Facebook posts!
So I’m treating the time spent on these income reports as a very valuable insight into the current health of my business, as well as a spring board for planting the seeds of future growth.
And hey, if I just happen to inspire the heck out of a few of you, then job well done right?
I’ve shared my success with a handful of my entrepreneurial friends, and a few close friends as well, but outside of that I’ve remained a bit quiet about the significant growth that I’ve seen in my business… and I’m starting to feel like that’s a bit selfish.
Although the world may or may not need to hear more success stories from its Entrepreneurs, I think it’s definitely in need of more stories that include the ENTIRE picture… not just the seemingly over-night “I sold my 6 month old business to Facebook for a billion dollars” story, but the “I built a 6-figure business in 7 years after 3 failed attempts” kind of stories.
Those are the stories that people can relate to and hopefully draw some inspiration from right?
The Big Picture
My entrepreneurial tendencies began back in my university dorm-room in 2006 with my room-mate Colin Yates. We decided that we wanted to combine our skills in the fields of Environmental Science with Computer Science and create a product that would “revolutionize” the way environmental practitioners do their field work.
It seemed like a very straightforward idea that had little chance of failure.
We were wrong.
I spent 2 years perfecting a product and we spent 3 more years trying to sell it.
In the end, the product was a failure (even though it was very useful) for many reasons and we walked away with a lot of lessons learned.
Fast forward to 2015, and only now have I started to see success in one of my many entrepreneurial endeavours.
The success I’m seeing now was built on all of my failures since 2007 when I launched my first product.
Every month I want to try and do a “review and retrospective” on the past month and pull some nuggets of wisdom gained from the previous 30 days.
This is a methodology that I learned from my time as a software engineer. It’s part of the “Agile Methodology” and I found it to be extremely useful in making sure you don’t repeat past mistakes.
When you can look back over the past few weeks and identify what has gone well, and what has NOT gone well and actually write that stuff down, you’ll have a much greater chance of succeeding in the future.
So what lessons did I learn in April?
Setting goals for myself is still a great tool to use for productivity.
When I first started as a full-time entrepreneur back in 2012, I didn’t need to read any books on motivation or productivity. I was a work-a-holic. Day and night I would grind and pump out content in all different shapes and sizes. Blog posts, YouTube videos, Podcast episodes, paid content, homework assignments, sales pages, squeeze pages, etc. I was a machine!
But fast forward to April of 2015, and that same drive has now diminished. Not because I’ve lost the passion for entrepreneurship, but because I’m fairly burned out. I’m also helping to plan a wedding at the same time, so that plays a significant part in the slow down.
So I’ve found that I need to take some time to figure out what I can use to keep myself moving forward and putting in the work needed to keep my business growing.
Having said that, getting down and dirty with the creation of all the videos, exercises, homework and coding assignments to create the quality course I want to create is very tough. It takes focus, willpower and dedication. All things that I seem to be running out of at the moment.
So while I was finding myself procrastinating and finding other things that I could focus my attention on (outside of creating the course) I realized that I needed to figure out how to get myself back on track.
That realization took shape on my weekly mastermind call with my entrepreneurial peeps (Amy, Carter and Lucas). I realized that I hadn’t set a deadline for myself, I didn’t have a goal I needed to achieve!
It all suddenly made sense. I had no looming deadline I needed to hit. I had no sense of urgency to create this course, as I’m already selling my Java course and paying the bills right?
So I challenged myself to record at least 8 new videos every single week. And Voila! Results.
I went from producing around 1-3 videos every week, to over 8 videos a week.
That’s right, I exceeded my goal. What a keener.
So, having said that, I never used to be a believer in setting goals – but that was because I never had a problem with getting the work done.
I now know that goal-setting will be an extremely useful tool in my bag of tricks for all of my future projects.
Now let’s get to the good stuff. The breakdown of my revenue for this month.
It’s very useful as an outsider looking into someone else’s business to see where the money comes from, and where the money goes. Sometimes you can identify patterns in other people’s businesses that can transfer over into your own. Whether that be from income, or the way the profits are re-invested.
So I hope that you’ll be able to gain some new insights into your business based on these April 2015 figures below:
|Java Training Course||$10,045.15|
|Java eBook Sales||$1,044.18|
|Udemy Course Sales||$178.31|
|Computer – Hardware||$86.48|
|Computer – Software||$576.37|
|Computer – Internet||$142.00|
|Computer – Hosting||$134.20|
|Telephone – Wireless||$182.21|
|Bank Service Charges||$362.23|
|Meals and Entertainment||$19.13|
|Education & Training||$522.63|
|Transaction Processing Fees||$64.25|
|Payroll – Salary & Wages||$511.08|
|Advertising & Promotion||$385.00|
|Total Operating Expenses||$5,158.47|
Net Profit $7,652.53
So far, the month of April 2015 has been my most profitable month and I have a feeling that my revenue will drop a bit in the month of May due to the fact that my main source of leads (the organic traffic on my blog) has decreased. This decrease is fairly seasonal as the university students are now done their final semester and have written their exams and are heading home for the summer.
Typically the traffic starts to increase again in July as students are starting to get back into the swing of things and want to get their brains going again for the upcoming September semester.
I look forward to seeing you all again in next month’s income report and as always if you have any questions, please post them in the comments section below! We love to hear from our readers/listeners.
All the best,
5 thoughts on “April 2015 – Income Report”
Trevor, good work above. Amazing how deadlines can really make a difference. Even if they are somewhat “artificially” set against ourselves, it helps. I imagine your mastermind also keeps you accountable as well.
You mention “Shareholder Salary”, may I ask why type of company/business model you are using? I believe you are based in Canada (please correct me if I’m wrong!) and I’m curious how that works. (I’m USA based and trying to decide between LLC and S-Corp designations and how to best add capital to my next business adventure).
Looking forward to next months report!
Not only profitable, but it looks like you are changing lives with those courses!
I also love the part about just challenging yourself on the forward progress. So much easier than trying to do it all at once and burning out (as I am apt to do)
So much awesome. Keep it up.
As the CFO for Trevor’s businesses, I can only really comment on what Canadian accounting procedures apply for a corporation. I would only presume that a Limited Liability Corporation (LLC) would be fairly similar to a Canadian Corporation. Any capital invested in the company would be recorded as a Shareholder Loan to the Corporation. This loan could then be paid back, from the company’s profits, to the shareholder over time.
Ah, yes got it. Thank you for the clarification. That’s pretty much how mine is run (the LLC company) and makes sense.