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Let me tell you about my business “by design”

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This post is still accurate but I recently published a full review of Business by Design, addressing all of the Pros and Cons of BBD (including who it’s for, how it helped me, and whether I think it’s worth it…). Read that post and watch the video here.

Related: Business by Design HONEST Review

In 2017, I joined James Wedmore’s “Business By Design” program, and while it is soooo informative, I think his BBD videos (launch videos) make it feel like you’ll be rolling in a Tesla by next week. I want to give you a more “real life” example of what a “business by design” looks like (especially as a blogger), from someone who just recently joined the program. Because when James says so-and-so “generated $165,000 in less than two weeks” I kinda want to roll my eyes (haha!).

Not to take away from his students’ successes – it’s totally legit. It’s just not my reality right now. Now that James’ launch videos are making their rounds again (and they are absolutely fantastic, no matter where you’re at with business, btw) I want to talk about my experience.

So let’s be real. I’m not a 7-figure blogger. I am not even a 6-figure blogger. If I said I was a 5-figure blogger, would you be impressed? Probably not. But the truth is (and this amazes me every day), I do earn income from blogging and creating YouTube videos by:

  • affiliate links and campaigns
  • working directly with brands on sponsored content
  • advertising on my site and YouTube channel
  • creating online courses

So I want to let you in on some of my “insider secrets”, and share with you a few insights that I don’t normally talk about here. Let’s talk about my business “by design”! (by the way, I am an affiliate for BBD, which means that when I share my stories and James’ resources with you, he will return the favor by giving me a part of the profit. This post also contains affiliate links to other products.)

James Wedmore's Business By Design

Quick Background

I launched VidProMom in January 2015 with weekly YouTube videos and blog posts. I did that for a year. I didn’t even miss one week! That was my goal… publish one video/blog post a week for a year. I didn’t have a monetary goal or a metrics goal, but I finished out the year with 2,000 YouTube subscribers and I thought that was amazing (it is–any amount of YouTube subscribers is a huge feat for this introvert!).

The following year, my goal was to keep growing (of course) but to also experiment with monetization. Meaning ways to earn money via this blog and YouTube channel thing. Errbody talks monetization but few people really know that it takes work. And there’s a gazillion ways and methods to do it.

One of the ways I started to experiment with was creating an online course.

I made a TON of Mistakes

These are some of the things I know you will relate to if you’ve ever had an idea and a desire to create an online course or program. You might have even made some of these mistakes yourself! Mistakes are lessons and I’m grateful for them, but at some point, it’s time to grow up and learn the right way to do things. Ya feel me?

The “Copy Everyone Else” Mistake

I launched my first course based on what I read in Jeff Walker’s book, Product Launch Formula, and “backward engineering” other people’s launches. I.e. cobbling multiple plans into one. I also tweaked a bunch of stuff at the very last minute, including… get this… I decided to switch email providers (from Mailchimp to ConvertKit) 3 days before the launch. Three. Days. Before. Launching. My. First. Course.

WHY WHY WHY WHY WHY. I don’t know. I really don’t.

That first launch was surprisingly successful (by my own measure) despite me being clueless about the process. It was also incredibly stressful.

And I thought all launches were supposed to be that way… Nerve-wracking, late nights working, last-minute tweaking. Uh, no. Launches are not supposed to be stressful, and in the Business By Design program, I learned that having a rock-solid plan handed to you from beginning to end reduces stress by like 95% (come on, you gotta get a little nervous or it’s not even any fun!!).

The “Launch and Run” Mistake

After my first course launch, I performed a series of “launch and run” launches. I’d come up with a course idea, create it (or pre-sell it, then create it), and when it was done, I’d run. I said, “ok that was great, what am I going to launch next?”

What’s wrong with that, you ask? Well, for starters, I put a LOT of work into the launch itself (not to mention course material), so when I launch ONCE and then give up and move onto something else, I throw away all that hard work.

After joining Business By Design I had a HUUUUGE epiphany… increase traffic, improve conversions, and launch again… DUH!

I have to say that again. Launch again… DUH! I had inadvertently created SO MUCH MORE WORK for myself because I didn’t have a process for launching that could be replicated easily. James’ first video in his free workshop talks about processes… this is HUGE.

The “Hamster Wheel Method of Content Creation” Mistake

It’s really hard to “see the forest through the trees” when you’re blogging and creating YouTube content, especially at first. Creating content for the sake of creating content (to up your traffic, increase views, grow your audience) is fine at first, but at some point, you have to have a plan for all that traffic!

This is a toughy for me because I am a YouTuber, not just a blogger & course creator. Sometimes YouTube is about creating content to get the views/subscribers to grow your channel and reach more people.

But when you’re trying to monetize through selling a digital course… you need to create content that attracts the exact right person, helps them solve a problem or learn something new, then gets them “on board” for more great content from you… maybe more free content, possibly some paid content (i.e. a digital course).

In Business by Design, you get this map that really shows you how the content you create (blog posts, YouTube videos, etc) relates to the digital products you sell (or plan to sell). To put it another way, when you have a product, digital or otherwise, the content you push out there NEEDS to attract ideal customers of that product. Otherwise… you’re not really marketing. You’re just on the content creation hamster wheel. And that ain’t going to buy me a Tesla. 😛

What Gets Measured, Gets Improved

To quote Peter Drucker, “what gets measured, gets improved.” Right now, I’m in the “measure everything” phase of business… what’s working, what’s not… what’s generating revenue, whats not… what’s taking a TON of time, what’s not… thanks to all that I’ve learned through BBD, I know what to measure, and how to improve what’s working.

At the time of this writing, I’ve done two launches (for two different programs) since joining Business by Design, and I’m gearing up to re-launch one of those same programs… and instead of being stressed about it, I’m excited! Let’s do this!

Without a doubt, I am still learning. Always. I’m not doing 6 figure launches, and it will probably be quite a while before I come close to a 5-figure launch. But by offering my audience digital courses, I’m serving in ways that I can’t do with YouTube videos or blog posts alone. I’m not a high roller by any means, but I am enjoying the freedom of self-employment and I LOVE what I do.

James Wedmore's Business By Design

If you are even remotely curious about really stepping up your game, I highly recommend James’ 8-part series. It’s totally free and it’s very enlightening.  If you’re a blogger, YouTuber, aspiring content creator or just wanna jump headfirst into the online business space, I don’t know how you could watch these videos and NOT get TOTALLY PUMPED!

Would I recommend James Wedmore’s Business By Design Program?

It depends. It depends on you, honestly. If you’re not ready to take action on starting (or improving) your business, then no. Do not sign up if you’re not going to take action on it. But if you’re curious whether it will work for you, or even if you’re curious about what it’s all about, I highly recommend you watch James’ “Rise of the Digital CEO” series. You will get a LOT from the free videos alone. If you’re in a spot where you’re hustling your face off and not seeing the results you hoped for, then by all means… jump right into Business By Design! I’ll see you there 😉

Related: Business by Design HONEST Review

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Grace

Sunday 14th of October 2018

Hi! I'm a bit careful here, but would you mind letting me know what you paid for the program? It doesn't have to be a number, but roughly hundreds or thousands?

I'm really thinking about joining this time, but I really need to make a revenue plan around it if it's going to cost me thousands. But he's not opening the cart for too long so I'm a bit at a crossroad here!

Thank you so much in advance!

Meredith Marsh

Monday 15th of October 2018

Hi Grace! Mind shooting me a message on FB messenger? I'd love to chat through your questions there!! Message my profile (https://www.facebook.com/meredithpaynemarsh) or shoot me an email - meredith at vidpromom .com

Akeisha

Sunday 1st of July 2018

Hi Meredith, thanks for this article. I recently watched all of James videos on BBD as he launched his current session. I thought I couldn't do it and didn't have an idea. Then just the other day a massive idea came to me for an online dance course. I thought ok I'll hold on to this, try figure out how to do the things on my own. But then I started listening to his podcast and got swept away... Fear quickly popped and lack of funds (I mean zero money in my account) popped into my head. recently this year started my own YouTube channel (a girl on a mission to make her dreams a reality) I signed up for Jump Start academy totally swept away by their fancy marketing and once you are in the how-tos where good but didn't walk you through everything and it was a lot to take in (I had seviere anxiety)

I commented on a post of jame's yesterday asking when he would be reopen the course and I thought he would get it weeks from now, nope he messaged me right away and was like it will be closed for a while but we can get you in if you are interested.

You mentioned you tried to figure it all out and would stay up late. It's true that he basically gives you everything so you don't have to being crying at night pulling your hair out because you don't know what your doing?

Am I crazy to think I can do this and spend ALL THAT MONEY and potentially loose it all?

Thanks for taking the time to read this. I just don't want to make a $5000 mistake and be trying to figure it all out on my own again.

Best Akeisha

P.

Monday 8th of October 2018

What does BBD cost?

Meredith Marsh

Tuesday 24th of July 2018

Hi Akeisha, sorry I didn't reply to this sooner. Only you can decide if BBD is right for you, of course, but it does open again in October. It is very in-depth and really covers everything about creating and launching a profitable course (or membership program, etc.), but I think (personally) it really helps to have already started to build an audience around your topic.

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