LRS 046: How Nathan Chan Grew Foundr to a 6-Figure Business 92

How Nathan Chan Grew Foundr to a 6-Figure Business - the let's reachs success podcast, lidiya k

Today on the Let’s Reach Success podcast I’ll talk about Nathan Chan’s successful business venture, Foundr Magazine. It’s the go-to resource for aspiring business owners and young startup founders.

It’s a monthly, subscription-based digital magazine on the topic of success and entrepreneurship, and the best one of its kind.

The person behind it is Nathan Chan. And what makes the story encouraging is that he started this in 2013 as a self-funded side hustle, and was still at his regular job, not knowing where this could take him.

In a year, however, he turned it into one of the most downloaded digital magazines on entrepreneurship on iTunes, and a 6-figure business.

The issues feature some of the smartest, richest and most thriving magnates, that share advice on life and startups. It all began with Richard Branson on the very first cover of the magazine, and since then it’s been names like Tony Robbins, Seth Godin, Chris Ducker, Deepak Chopra, Gary Vee, Tim Ferriss, Darren Rowse and many more.

Together with that one product, Nathan Chan created a fantastic brand. There’s the website, the blog with articles with powerful business advice, the weekly podcast where one big name in an industry shares his success story.

Now, he’s also crushing it on Instragram, and created a course on how to monetize that platform, and is also holding webinars every now and then.

So, all that should make us curious.

How did Nathan Chan do all this?

What made him come up with the idea, why he chose a magazine and not a blog or a podcast as everyone else is doing out there?

What were the struggles in the beginning to take the business off the ground, and what are the things that make Foundr different from all the other products out there?

What does it take to create a wildly successful digital magazine and make readers love you?

That’s what I’ll try to find out in this episode.


Show Notes:

  • Why Nathan Chan decided to start a magazine, and not a blog or a podcast like everyone else [2:29]
  • The early days of Foundr and why he called it this way [4:18]
  • What it takes to be a successful startup founder [6:14]
  • How Nathan and the team distribute the product [7:05]
  • What’s the message behind the brand [8:08]


Listening options:

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Thanks for listening.

Glad you joined me on the podcast today. If you want to hear a particular topic on it, leave a comment below and I’ll make sure I cover it in the future.
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What do you think about the way Nathan Chan made it?

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Becoming Your Own Boss: Tips on Getting a Business Off The Ground 7

How Writing a Blog Can Help You Live the Life You Dream About

Becoming your own boss is a complicated process, and not everyone does it the same way.

I got lucky. I was still working when I got my business off the ground, so I had a source of income while I was working the kinks out of my business. I did most of my work for the new business when I got home or on the weekends. I asked for a change in job responsibilities at the office so that I didn’t have as much on my plate.

This all gave me a chance to start earning money without going into debt. When it was feasible, I stopped working my regular job and transitioned into working for myself full time. It took about a year and a half.

Establish clear boundaries.


Sometimes people don’t take you seriously when you tell them that you work for yourself. They think you are always available to chat or have lunch.

I had a number of friends that would call me at all hours, assuming I was available because they wanted to talk. Granted, it was nice to have that freedom at first. But, I soon realized that if I was going to be successful, I couldn’t let those kinds of distractions interrupt my workday.

Save before you start working for yourself full time.

I was in pretty good shape when I made the transition, but looking back, a few more months with a paycheck would have been wonderful.

When you start your own business, money can be very tight. You never know what you are going to make month to month.

I had one customer that initially made up most of my revenue. That customer only paid on a quarterly basis, which meant that times were tough in between payments.

I had to spend money to build the business, which meant there wasn’t a lot left over. If I didn’t get a payment right on time, it was very difficult to deal with.

There were times when I had to ask for a loan from family members simply to pay my bills.

Reach out and build a support network.

4 Tips to Track Your Remote Employees' Progress Without Demoralizing Them

It can be really difficult to adjust at first. You have great days and you have terrible days. You meet goals some months, while other months you are left wondering where you went wrong.

If you make a mistake, you alone are responsible for it and your business and reputation can suffer. It is easy to feel depressed at times. You may even start to feel like you can’t handle running a business and that you made a big mistake when you left your office job.

Remember that you are not alone. All entrepreneurs have these moments, which is why it is so important to connect with others in the field.

Take time for yourself.

I had a honeymoon period of about half a year. It was really exciting to see the business get bigger. Each milestone that I met was a reason to celebrate.

However, heading into the second year, it was more difficult. I was tired. Things weren’t as exciting because they weren’t new anymore. And then, year three came along. I was done with working such long hours.

I was done with having no time off. Burnout is certainly an issue in this business, so you have to figure out how to balance your personal and your professional needs.

It took me a long time to get where I am today. I had to do a lot of research. I had to educate myself on business. I had to find an SEO expert. I had to figure out who my main competitors were and keep an eye on them. I also had to stay current with what was happening in the field so that I didn’t fall behind.

No matter how hard I worked, it seemed like I could never get caught up. Running a business is a big responsibility.

If you are interested in starting your own business, you want to set yourself up for success. Try to cut back on your living expenses. Make sure you have substantial savings. Set up an area in your home where you can work, free from distractions.

If you are married, get your spouse on board. He or she can help pay bills while you are getting your business off the ground.

Your business is only as good as you are.

Make sure you have a support system of other business professionals. These people can help you acknowledge your weaknesses, encourage you to keep moving forward and advise you on common mistakes.

You can try and go it alone, but it will be very difficult for you. As with anything else in life, your support network has a lot to do with your success. You are probably strongly invested in your business; after all, it is something that you created. Make sure you have people that you trust to help you along the way.


Grace Lee has been practicing in the field of digital marketing for several years now. She has already brought numerous sites in search engines’ first pages in search results. In her spare time, she loves listening to podcasts about Google algorithm updates and other matters related to SEO.