What My Last Business Idea Was, Why I’m Leaving It Behind, and What’s Next 213

What My Last Business Idea Was, Why I’m Leaving It Behind, and What’s Next - letsreachsuccess.com lidiya k

Over the last few years I realized something really important, that applies not only to business ventures, but to anything we’re doing in life.

It’s the art of being selective.

Meaning that most of the things we’ve done, currently do, and plan to do, are just unnecessary.

But with so many distractions, options, information and more, it’s really hard to know what to focus on, find ways to eliminate everything else, and be consistent with this one or few things until they are completed.

That’s why being selective is yet another powerful skill we should learn these days, similar to time management and being adaptive.

And something many people find hard is leaving projects behind.

Why?

Because starting something is such a big deal, that leaving it behind means forgetting about all the work that’s been done on this and admitting you will not succeed. But it’s not defeat. It’s a super smart approach to work, business, and life in general.

With this post, I’ll give an example why and when some ideas need to be let go of peacefully, how that helps clear your mind and even leads to better things and progress.

What was My Last Business Idea?

This is the first time I’ll be talking about it publicly.

Thing is, I had a plan, have been thinking about it and brainstorming ideas for a long time now and it is still a good fit, and might get back to it in the future.

But the timing wasn’t right.

And as you might know, one of the most important things in life is timing.

So, my idea was to turn Let’s Reach Success into a membership site, or a subscription site, or something inbetween.

Here are the main reasons why it would work for this exact site:

  • there are close to 800 articles in the archives already, so it can be considered a powerful resource on the topics of personal, spiritual and business growth;
  • I receive and publish enough guest and sponsored posts so that I can dedicate time to creating content for subscribers only, and still have free stuff to publish on a daily basis;
  • marketing isn’t my thing, writing is. The main reason most site owners don’t run a membership site is the amount of work it takes and the time that must be invested in this daily/weekly/monthly (although, of course, there are other ways to make it work, such as drip content, giving access to already published products, or else);
  • I now have much more practical info to share than I could a year or 2 ago. I’m now being a real location independent online business owner, doing what I love, living the laptop lifestyle, traveling while working, giving new things a try and learning from the mistakes, and just moved to my dream location too – Amsterdam, Netherlands. So I can now publish super specific and practical posts, from how exactly I’m making money from the blog and what it takes to move to one of the best cities in the world and still not live expensively, to how to make going to Thailand for a few weeks possible, a step-by-step guide to creating a podcast episode, etc. I believe that information is worth being charged for (a small amount of money, of course), as it means I’m giving people the exact steps to take and things not to do in order to get exactly where I am in life;
  • I want to invest more time in that type of content, meaning long-form posts and hours of energy, and make sure only those who care get to read it. Such content is premium and those who become members of the site can enjoy it;
  • I’ll be creating a community by doing this, giving direct access to myself, opening a forum in the future;
  • I was going to write about the original and top topics the blog is made for, without the newly added ones (as it has grown since then and covers health, finance, travel, startups, and more side subjects for the general audience);
  • I was gonna restrict access to some of the old but gold articles in the archives and thus offer them to members only;
  • I had the welcome page prepared, together with a completely new menu, site structure, and other details, ready for those who subscribe for the premium version of the site;
  • I was gonna welcome them with a whole library of free stuff (after which they would get to read new, fresh, informative articles weekly) – there was a big bonus eBook (which I’m gonna publish soon), a page with Guides, where I was going to add a new one monthly (you can now see a new menu tab and when you click on it you’ll find out some free action guides. I’ll still be adding a new one monthly, and the ones that take more work and time will be paid);
  • I was going to create audio content and other types of products specially for subscribers in the future;
  • I had also prepared 5 of my best books from the book store free for members.

I did invest hours in the research part, and tens of hours more into creating the content for members, preparing things for the first few people that join, choosing a membership software, etc.

Why It Didn’t Work Out?

I believe every project should begin like that – by putting enough thought, creative energy and time in it way before you actually launch.

But it wasn’t until I finally paid for the membership platform, installed it and started playing with it, that I realized I wasn’t ready for this business project.

That day was more than 2 weeks ago, I was just saying bye to my parents who came to visit me in Amsterdam for NYE, and sat at Starbucks at Schiphol Airport to do this. I love the atmosphere there and felt inspired.

So I paid around $100 for the membership plugin, activated it, and started preparing the payment system, checking out the settings, creating the new pages for subscribers, restricting access to them, and so on.

Then, around 5 days later I still hadn’t launched it. I realized that a membership site is a harder thing than what it looks like. I wanted to start creating the content for members already, but there’s so much more to be done, and so many new things come up all the time.

I started having doubts about this.

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Then, my site went down, many times and for longer periods. That was quite depressing as it means some clients my not reach out for sponsored posts opportunities, Google will immediately notice this and it will be bad for the site’s reputation, and readers will be seeing a homepage that isn’t loading, which is awful.

So I contacted my hosting provider, Bluehost, and discussed this. I wasn’t sure what the problem was, but turns out (and I knew that already) that I’ve got too many applications added to the site (plugins, some of which are quite big like WooCommerce, a podcast plugin, and tons of content) and it just couldn’t handle something new that’s as big as membership software.

Which led me to do further research on the next step I needed to take to grow LRS and take it to the next level.

Bluehost is a great hosting provider and I’m staying with it in the future too. Here’s my experience with it and WordPress.

But just like I needed to get the pro version of shared hosting a year ago because of the growth in the traffic, so do I now need to try VPS (virtual private server) hosting to have greater optimization and more storage.

Basically, I’ll now have a dedicated server to manage my files and data which will provide greater user experience and make the site load faster and perform better. Also, I’ll get more than enough RAM, bandwidth and security.

In addition, I’ll be able to install any application I want to the site, no matter how big it is, and be sure there will be no down time. And if a post goes viral or I have thousands of people landing on the site at the same time due to another good reason, it won’t go down and will load immediately.

That’s exactly what Let’s Reach Success needs.

Then, of course, I’ll be able to successfully run a powerful membership site. But I still don’t think the timing is right and that I’m ready to do it. So that’s something I’m leaving behind for now.

What’s Next for LRS?

All the content I publish, the premium theme I got, the design I tackle all the time, and more – all that is for the reader.

My main goal is the ultimate reader experience, cause this is a blog before anything else (like a book store, or business, or brand).

That’s why there’s no side bar, no ads, a progress bar to let you see how much is left from the article you’re reading, etc.

My focus will now be more on optimization, but the type of optimization visitors don’t need to know about.

That means better hosting, higher performance, speed, domain authority, and of course – good content as content is king.

So, that’s what’s down the road and it’s hard work for someone like me who’s not tech-savvy.

I’ll be investing more money in all this, obviously. But I’m at the point where I need to spend more money in order to earn more too, if you know what I mean.

***

With this post, I wanted to show you that it’s okay to leave some projects behind. Don’t feel bad about it. You still learn a ton of stuff while working on it, and there’s a certain amount of wisdom in knowing how to let go of something and focus on what matters more right now.

PS, the membership platform I used was MemberPress. It’s a super quality product, and I got the license and it worked well. It’s just that my site was overwhelmed with too many other big plugins already and had a ton of content. Otherwise, it would have worked perfectly.

I highly recommend this plugin though. And believe me, I read so much and checked the features of all possible membership plugins. That’s the one considered #1 by many experts, like in this review by Chris Lema.

And imagine my surprise when I contacted the team to ask for return and explained my situation saying that I just won’t be using the product right now. Spencer, the actual creator, cancelled my subscription in a few hours and I received my money back in PayPal. He also wrote a super positive email saying he’s sorry for the issue I encountered and that he hopes to hear from me again in the future when I’m ready to have a membership site.

That’s what I call customer service, and I believe the software companies that succeed in the long-run are the ones run by people like him.

So, if you’re looking for something like that, make sure you check out MemberPress.

Let me know what you think about the whole membership thing I tried, the hosting idea, and the vision for LRS in the future in the comments below. I truly wanna hear your thoughts.

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How I Made $375 with One Article as a Freelance Writer on Clear Voice 6

clear voice review How I Made $375 with One Article as a Freelance Writer on Clear Voice

There are many sites for freelancers where anyone can build their portfolio, pitch clients and earn money. If you’ve been following my monthly income reports, you know that half of my income comes from sponsored posts on Let’s Reach Success while the other half is from freelance writing.

I’m mainly earning through Upwork which is a great website for newbies and a place where I managed to become a Top Rated freelancer.

However, they don’t pay much, there are a lot of freelancers from cheap countries there who’d charge just a few dollars per hour (or for a few thousand words). That means low-quality clients come there too and it’s hard for me to meet my hourly rate with businesses and individuals who don’t have a budget for content creation.

That made me look for better platforms and sites for freelance writers that pay more. I will be writing about all of them soon. While they aren’t for newbies, it never hurts to create your profile there when you’re starting out and slowly build your portfolio. Because one day you’ll get found on them and they will pay you hundreds of dollars for a single article.

My years of hard work paid off in a new way this month. I made $375 for a 2000-word article (that I enjoyed writing and which didn’t take more than 2 hours to complete). That happened on Clear Voice.

Let’s talk more about that site and how you too can get paid what you deserve.

Freelancing is the best way to get started online. That’s what I did and began without experience. Now, I’m earning over $4,000/month blogging and freelancing as you can see from my lastest income report. I wrote down all the steps I took to get there starting from $0 and created a blueprint: the free course How to Make Money Online Freelancing:

Check out How to Make Your First Money Online Freelancing. A free course I created using Teachable that will help you get your online business start and earn your first dollars from home by offering your services as a freelancer.

What is Clear Voice?

ClearVoice.com isn’t the traditional site for freelancers. It’s a great marketplace where you just create a profile, showcase your work (they have their own CV portfolio feature) and get found.

While you might not receive job opportunities when you haven’t been freelancing for long, it’s worth being there while improving your personal brand as a freelancer.

Of course, the best way for that to happen (which is how I did it too) is to have your own blog. Let’s Reach Success had hundreds of articles on it before I signed up for Clear Voice. So it served as my ultimate portfolio.

If you haven’t set up a site yet, I suggest doing it now.  Here’s how to start a blog that will make money forever (not just by helping you land freelance clients).

The best thing about Clear Voice is that it gives access to quality brands, companies and individuals. As you know, in the blogging world it’s all about networking. But with sites like Upwork, that’s hard.

Big brands are elsewhere and Clear Voice is one example.

How Clear Voice Works for Freelancers

Clear Voice is all about content marketing and can connect creators with agencies and brands. But for the purpose of this post and all of you who are freelance writers and want to get paid more for your services, we’ll talk about how it works for us.

Their goals are to help freelancers showcase their best work, find high-quality clients, get paid what they deserve, build their brand, receive payments quickly, and secure better jobs.

If you think about it, these are all the things we struggle with on other platforms, especially those that include bidding.

Okay, let’s see how Clear Voice works.

For a start, it’s absolutely free to sign up and create your portfolio as a freelancer so go do it now.

From then on, you’ll receive an email with a notification whenever you have a writing opportunity. If it sounds like something you’d do, click the link in your email and hit ‘Apply’ next to the job description.

clear voice email notifications

The rate you see is what you’ll earn after Clear Voice fees (which are around 25% and high but still you get paid much better than expected).

My Experience with Clear Voice Over The Years

Now, let me tell you how I received $375 from Clear Voice, because I myself didn’t believe it until the money arrived to my PayPal account.

clear voice payment

I’ve been registered with Clear Voice for a long time now. Because I’m making changes to my online business (focusing on more quality work and clients, charging more, eliminating old activities, etc.), I was also updating my profile on sites that had potential to get me freelance work.

It’s hard to put the effort when you haven’t landed a job with a certain platform, but I did it anyway.

I’ve been receiving email notifications from Clear Voice for job opportunities but never took them seriously (although I did apply to some).

After updating my profile and adding a ton of my best articles in my portfolio, I applied for one assignment on the topic of relationships. I could see who the client was, trusted Clear Voice for handling payments, and also thought it’s worth giving it a try to see if I can make my first money there.

There are instructions (not too long) with each assignment and you see when you’ve been hired for it. You can always contact support or message the client there, which is great.

Once he reviews it, or after the end date for the completion of the article is over, you receive your money.

Actually, while I was waiting for that client to react (he didn’t get back to me, by the way, but I still got paid as the Clear Voice system clears payments even if the client disappears), I applied for another assignment that seemed like a good fit for me. I wrote an article on how to start a business blog for one brand. It was for around $120 and was 800 words. They paid me immediately.

But the point of this post is to share the case about the other article. It’s not about the $375. It’s about believing freelance writers can make nearly $400 for one task thanks to their reputation in a niche for years.

It’s a common fact that freelancers underprice themselves. It took me years to find the courage to stop doing that and say ‘no’ to clients.

That resulted in doubling my blogging income, which I’ll write about more soon.

Once I got paid $375 for one article for a freelance client, I finally felt appreciated. For years I’ve been struggling with clients reluctant to pay more than $30 for a short article or an hour of my time. And to this day I accept lower rates just because the income of a freelancer is unstable.

This gig, however, helps me rethink it all. Just like when I made $250 from one sponsored post, I stopped accepting anything less than $50 and often ask for up to $100. That means rejecting many opportunities that could make me a few hundred dollars more each month. But thanks to these higher prices I get more serious clients and also increase my income.

PS, Clear Voice did a survey on what people pay or charge per project. You can check it out here.

What It Takes to Get High-Quality Freelance Clients on Clear Voice

Sign up now.

Fill in your profile and portfolio. Here’s how mine looks like.

clear voice portfolio lidiya k

Check out emails from Clear Voice. (It’s okay if the first one arrives weeks after signing up.)

Create your blog and start writing content like crazy in the niches you cover.

Next Level Tips for Succeeding on Clear Voice

Keep updating your portfolio.

Don’t apply for an assignment simply because of the money. It’s not fair.

Feel free to contact support and see how you can get found by clients sooner.

Here are some resources to help you with making it as a freelance writer on Clear Voice:

Make Your First Money Online Freelancing [Free Course] – I created a free course sharing my journey to making more than $4,000/month blogging. It all began with freelancing and you can use this course to follow the steps I took to become a freelancer with no experience and earn my first income online.

How I Became a Location Independent Freelance Writer Want to use freelancing as a way to ditch the 9 to 5 and be location independent? Great. That’s what I did. Check out this article to see the steps I took to build a new mindset, start making money online, leave my country and design the life I want.

How to Start a Profitable Blog – This step-by-step guide to starting a blog is a must for everyone who wants to start earning online and become self-employed. Having your own blog is the first step to building your personal brand as a freelancer.

Blogging Resources – To build a powerful site that turns visitors into buyers and monetize it well, you will need the right tools. In my Blogging Resources page, I’ve gathered the best of the best and the exact tools I’ve used to grow Let’s Reach Success and be able to make a full-time living as a freelance writer.

My Monthly Income Reports – If you’re curious how I make a living online, check out my income reports. I publish these monthly and share all the numbers together with the lessons I learned and the new things I’m working on.

Making Sense of Affiliate Marketing – The income from freelancing is unstable so it’s worth diversifying it. One of the best ways to earn more is through affiliate marketing (it can happen by placing links on your blog, through Pinterest, your newsletter, or else). This step-by-step affiliate marketing strategy course shows you how to increase your affiliate income and make more money blogging. It’s by Michelle from Making Sense of Cents who went from $0 in affiliate income to over $50,000 per month (and also the first online course I’ve ever taken).

Pin this post to inspire others to create profiles on more sites for freelancers like Clear Voice.

Just got paid nearly $400 for writing one article for a freelance client. Learn how this happened and see my Clear Voice review to take your freelance writing to the next level and get paid more: #freelancer #freelancewriting #clearvoice