My September 2017 Review and Monthly Income Report 79

My September 2017 Review and Monthly Income Report let's reach success lidiya k

I gave publishing old income reports from when I was just starting out a try, but somehow it’s not easy to follow up with this as it’s not that relevant anymore. So a better thing to do would be to review my months, together with money made and lessons learned. It’s a great way to track progress, analyze what you did right and decide what to do better the next month.

As it’s the beginning of October, and I was just finishing my monthly review in terms of finance and work for September, I decided to write a bit about it too. I’m tracking money made, money spent, workouts, food, and a few other things related to goals of mine or things I’m trying to change. I believe what gets measured, gets managed, as Peter Drucker once said.

Let’s see what my September in 2017 was like.

Becoming financially stable again.

I’ve been exploring the principles of money management over the last few months. More specifically, after I got back from Thailand and realized things got a bit out of control as I began spending without tracking. Also, due to other changes in the lifestyle and my new life in the Netherlands, I had bigger expenses. So, less income and more expenses, together with blowing up your savings during travels, is a surefire way to get back to where you started. However, I’m grateful, stayed strong, learned a ton of stuff about handling money and building wealth that I wouldn’t otherwise think about. And am now back on track.

Basically, to be in control of your finances, you need to find ways to increase your monthly income, stop spending too much and ultimately even lower your expenses, and invest or save the difference between these 2.

Not easy, but it’s the path to financial freedom. One of the many types of freedom there are, and certainly one I’m after.

A week back home.

I just got back from Bulgaria, my home country. The lifestyle there is quite cheap, and of course where family is there’s not much spending either, so that helped.

While it was pleasant to see friends and family and get some stuff done there, it was also a distraction. There I’m constantly being reminded of the person I used to be before I saw progress and moved away. I don’t like that, but it will always exist. I’ll never forget where I come from, but that’s not the environment I wanna be surrounded by. Escaping it, and being exposed to a new culture and its positivity and different mentality, makes me notice all the things I didn’t like about the Bulgarian way of thinking. So it takes a lot of patience for me to make it there. That’s why I want it in small doses, and go for a week or 10 days, instead of more, although I could easily do that if I want to.

Back to freelancing as the main source of income.

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Truth is, I got distracted this summer and indulged in dreaming, working on bigger things, giving new strategies a try, etc. But if you’re working online, all that should be left for the free time. As the main source of income in my case is freelance work for clients, and has always been, but I left it in the background. That had consequences, and I had to take a step back, see what I’ve been doing differently half a year ago when things were better, and do it again.

Didn’t take long before I was determined, gathered all my willpower and kept waking up early and getting to work, staying focused on the things that matter. So making a living comes first, all other projects and long-term internet marketing strategies come second.

There’s not really anyone to tell you what you might be doing wrong or when you’re slacking off if you’re your own boss. That’s why the personal qualities are built in the process, in the early days and long before you’re making money. It’s the discipline, productivity, effectiveness, the ability to eliminate distractions wherever you are, to structure your ideal day, and more.

Goals before the end of 2017.

I will be finalizing the things with moving my online business to the Netherlands. So a lot of things to prepare. Currently looking for an accountant. Got some other things sorted already but still have some questions that I need to ask someone who’s good at this and already working here as a self-employed person. I did it differently in Bulgaria, and wanna make sure I make the transition right.

Hopefully, the business will be active from the beginning of the new calendar year.

I won’t be sharing the other things I’ve got planned for the next 3 months, though. As I don’t talk too much before the action part and that helps me stay focused. Once there’s progress though, I’d gladly share it here on the blog.

September Income Report

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I made a total of $2,325 this month. Let’s keep it this way. While I’m living in a country where the currency is euros, and make my money in American dollars and that affects me negatively, I’ve accepted that a long time ago. It’s part of being international, working online and choosing things to be your way.

There were a total of 44 sponsored posts posted on the blog last month. You can read here about how I got started with sponsored posts. They are in the form of guest posts, and you can’t recognize them, and don’t need to. It’s still good content that I publish during the week, and that’s what makes it a win-win situation for everyone. For the reader, the person or company who provided the post (or made me write it and include their link naturally), and for me as I’ve got a new post to share and get paid for my time that I’ve invested in creating and growing Let’s Reach Success.

As for the income part, here’s what happened each week more specifically:

September, week 1:

Revenue: $389
Sponsored posts: 8


$100 came in for the first and only sponsored video review I’ve done. That’s a new income stream, although I haven’t done anything to make it happen again. But it is down the road and includes growing my YouTube channel and filling it with content.

$74 came from ads on the blog. I’m no fan of these and that’s why you don’t see pop ups or annoying ads everywhere. I just left these on old posts with a lot of traffic. I’m using the plugin

September, week 2:

Revenue: $290
New clients: 1
Sponsored posts: 10

September, week 3:

Revenue: $751
Sponsored posts: 9

Highlights: Here I began receiving money for freelance work I’ve done for a new and big clients. Hopefully, it will be a recurring one.

September, week 4:

Revenue: $772
New clients: 2
Sponsored posts: 10

Highlights: Bigger weekly number is still because of freelance work done on Upwork. Here I talk about how to make it as a freelancer on a site like that.

September, week 5:

Revenue: $129
Clients: 1
Sponsored posts: 7

Highlights: That was the lazy week I spent back home. Not much done other than the necessary daily work for clients and keeping up with deadlines.

What happened on the blog this month

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  • New social media plugin.

You might have noticed the social media buttons are now below, instead of on the side. Still flowing as you scroll down. The plugin is called Social Warfare.

  • New email optin.

I knew I had to make changes in the email marketing strategies throughout the blog. For a start, I got rid of old plugins that did it and looked a lot for a new one that I like. Tried a popular one but had technical difficulties, so ditched it. The current one is Mailchimp Forms by Optin Cat.

My email provider is Mailchimp, so that worked great. I liked the design and the options the free version provides too.

Because I now offer a ton of stuff to subscribers for free, I had to place different calls to action but with the same idea in mind. You see one in the beginning of each post. There are other ones on the most important pages for new and returning visitors. I still said ‘no’ to adding a popup as I don’t want it to affect the user experience.

  • Guest posts.

I’m getting stricter with what I publish by guest contributors on Let’s Reach Success. The guidelines are now more specific, and I most often give writers a nofollow link. It still amazes me how many people approach me with bad content, and so many requests such as to add many links of theirs and put them in the first sentence, which in my case is the bio.

That’s it for now. That was the first detailed monthly review, and I hope this will become a tradition.

What did you do in September? And what’s the plan for October?

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One Guy’s Journey from a Work-at-Home Transcriptionist to Starting an Educational Institute 7

One Guy's Journey from a Work-at-Home Transcriptionist to Starting an Educational Institute

This is an interview-style post with Mahesh Kumar.

Hey Mahesh. What do you do?

I’m the Spokesperson of the Transcription Certification Institute, an Ellensburg-WA based educational institution that provides an in-depth online transcription training and certification course.

The online course, which is created by industry leaders, enables transcriptionists to gain a well-rounded understanding of the field and become a professional transcriptionist for better job prospects and higher wages.

How did you start your career?

I’ve started my career as a home-based transcriptionist and have experience of 8+ years in transcription industry. I’m currently on a mission to help work from home moms and make them aware of one of the straightforward and lucrative way of earning money from home, i.e., transcription.

I love writing and so I regularly share my words through my blog. At present, I am working as the spokesperson of Transcription Certification Institute.

What inspired your journey?

I was not cut out for regular jobs because of health and family issues. But, I wanted to earn decent money.

Most work from jobs required me to be online during fixed hours. That did not work for me.

A friend referred me to a copywriter who needed transcription services in an extended time frame. This was my first assignment and exposure to the industry. I had issues with grammar and lots of difficulty in understanding accents. My transcriptionist friend gave me the very first lesson in punctuation. It was a great lesson.

That was the aha moment!

I wanted to share it online with all other new transcriptionists. My expertise in transcription was still limited but my interaction with other transcriptionists. And other work from home professionals found that there was no organized information in this industry.

That’s when with the help of the team we created an ebook as would serve as a handbook to transcriptionists. It was called Everything You Need To Know About Work From Home: General Transcription Business Opportunities.’ It’s available on our website for free.

What is the transcription business about?

It’s a dream that allows parents, caregivers and those with disabilities to stay at home and earn.

We call ourselves Team TCI. None of us has complete skills but together we have made a dream into a business that is sustainable, profitable and manages to help others earn more.

We like to think of ourselves as not just one single successful business owner but a team of accomplished transcriptionists and hedonists who have come together to share their expertise on a platform that is globally accessible to all.

Our objective is to make you a better transcriber so that you can earn more at the same time. 

Through our internship program, we ensure that new wannabe transcribers get a foothold in the industry. Our job board aims to bring transcribers and employers together on one platform to make hiring and finding jobs easier.

We are 9+ years old but the journey has only just begun.

What were your biggest challenges when setting up the institute?

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Together, we had 2,459 dollars to spare!  This was just enough to put up a website and host it for a year.

We had no budget, no marketing plan and no strategy.

More than money we invested our skills, time and above all intent. When we launched, making money was not the objective. The objective was to share information, educate and in the process recover the costs.

We were totally bootstrapped. In fact, we all transcribed extra hours to generate money.

Each year we invested the money earned in the course, it’s upgrade, website upgrade and more. All exams are manually graded and that is expensive.

What do you offer on the website and who can benefit from it?

We offer a course in general transcription.

Our course is for anyone who wants to work from the comfort of their home, enjoy flexible timings and the ability to choose workload. The course is very popular with parents of young children who want to be around when they grow up, ex-serviceman with disabilities, single moms and others who want to work from home.

Some would say that there is nothing to be learned in general transcription but that would not be true. I did start out without training and if it not had been for the help I received my career would not have been successful.

In fact, as the popularity of transcription as a career option grows getting a foothold in the industry is becoming tough. That is why we came up with an internship program that gives hand on experience to new transcriptionists and exposure to the industry.

The job board benefits them by bringing employers and transcriptionists on the same platform.

What’s one thing you do to unwind?

We were introduced to meditation a few years back and to unwind we like to meditate.

What’s your favorite book?

It keeps on changing but time and again for inspiration, I find myself reaching out to The Alchemist by Paul Coelho. Never stop dreaming! Give context to your dreams!

Check out the story of how one guy went from a work at home transcriptionist to setting up a transcription institute and help others start working from home.