6 things you need when starting a job-quitting writing business
Are you as tired as I am with hearing this phrase?
I personally cannot stand it.
- “Oh my gosh — my boss needs me to stay late tonight, FML”
- “I swear, if Karen says that again about me in the office, I’m gonna flip, FML”
- “I don’t know how I’m going to make it all come together this month, FML”
I hear it all the time. It’s really just thrown out as a filler of self-depreciation. For those of you unfamiliar with the phrase — a simple Google search will help you out.
I’m trying to keep this article PG.
It’s the 21st Century,
“Who is John Galt?”
I cannot stand it because I feel it’s the surface-level tellings of a social epidemic that is plaguing millions of people. What is that social epidemic?
People can’t stand working jobs they aren’t fulfilled with, working for people they don’t respect, and making wages they’re underpaid for.
It’s not just me standing on a soapbox either acting as the looney town-crier. According to a poll conducted by Gallup, a shocking 85% of the global working population is feeling unfulfilled and disengaged with their current full-time work.
While there are probably thousands of variables that can account for the workforce’s dissatisfaction, I believe that it is because countless people are living and working in an economy that doesn’t care about them.
What’s even crazier — a Harvard Business Review study recently noted that 58% percent of people surveyed said they trust a complete stranger more than their boss.
Luckily, on the flip side of all this is a gold mine of opportunity.
Modern technology and platforms have opened the door for thousands — if not millions of people to enter the content creation realm and go into business for themselves.
It’s what I’ve done and hope to help others achieve in their own lives — whether that’s a supplemental side hustle or leveraging the content created to go into business for themselves.
Sometimes, mustering up the courage and belief in yourself is the hardest part.
For others — they know they can do it. They just need a strategy to help them get off the launchpad.
Here’s how to get off that launchpad.
Start with a passion, but…
You’ve heard this spiel a thousand times.
But wait — don’t go just yet.
Sure, start with your passion in mind. However, (and this is a big however) you also need to blend that passion with a problem that a population is dealing with. In figure 1.1 I illustrate the sweet-spot effect that happens when you blend your passion with a problem that needs solving in that passion-space.
Create content within that passion that solves those problems
When I was a kid I thought two things:
- I thought things that existed now will exist forever.
- I thought that advertising didn’t make sense because I already knew about everything that was being advertised.
Of course, as I got older — I realized both of those thoughts are false.
We can see the first one is false with mega-chains like Sears, K-Mart and J.C. Penny closing hundreds of stores in the past few years.
The second thought — well as a youngster, I guess I just didn’t understand that things that existed before I was born needed an idea and an uphill fight in order to come to fruition.
When things are made — they aren’t known initially by the public. You have to do something in order to get the word out.
The traditional method is through paid advertising.
The 21st Century solopreneur method is through content creation.
This way is free. Well, it’s free monetarily. You’re going to have to pay with hard work, sweat, determination, perseverance, grit, failure, and more.
It’s false to believe that you’re going to be able to write a few articles, have them go viral and you’ll be at the top of everyone’s mind when it comes to your valuable content.
You need to create — plain and simple.
You’re going to need to show up every day, especially on the days you don’t want to.
Taco Bell doesn’t just make one Super Bowl ad and hope they can rely on that to help them increase annual revenue. Neither can you. You need consistent content the same way they need consistent outgoing advertisements.
Find your voice
You know how I mentioned you need to find a space that is already experiencing problems?
This is another juncture of the strategy where I lose people.
Wait… let me rephrase that.
This is another juncture of the strategy where I lose the cynics.
Why is that?
Because people who read this understand what I’m talking about. I’m referring to a niche. And when someone says, “niche,” they think about spaces where there’s already a boatload of competition.
That’s true — however, not everyone within a niche gravitates towards the same message.
That’s why we have Coke vs. Pepsi and Nike vs. Adidas.
If you enter an already saturated niche you have something that no one else does — you have your experience in which to add your own flair.
Think about the way you speak, the way you use imagery in your language, or the way you are able to be conversational.
That will connect with certain people.
Maybe you explain something in a manner in which others don’t — that’s your advantage.
So find your voice in your work.
You’ll start building your audience.
Learn to make that first $.01 — by then, you’ve already won
Social media can drive you crazy.
It seems like you open up Instagram and all you see are shiny bodies and glossy Lambos.
It can make you think that if you’re not making hella cash that you’re a failure.
Of course this is very far from the truth.
Outside of making royalties from your writing, you can further expand on your earnings by selling your own products.
I know when I sold my first digital product back in 2017, I almost crapped myself.
I sold an ebook for $13.50 (my pricing was completely random — it’s just what I thought the book was worth).
The Stripe payment came through on May 18th of that year.
His name was Daniel (I’ll never forget you, Daniel!)
How much did I make in total for the entire 2017 calendar year selling that same book?
I thought after that first sale that the flood gates burst open. I chased that high for months and months.
I kept at it.
- I kept testing.
- I kept pricing.
- I kept producing content.
- I kept failing.
- I kept pivoting.
- Because I knew that first sale was all I needed.
And it’s all you need.
You don’t need to make 6-figures tomorrow or this month. It definitely won’t happen like that either. You’ll know it when it happens. You’ll know the feeling I’m talking about when you sell that first product.
You’ll never forget his or her name either — that first customer I mean.
Become obsessed with helping others
Think about the first subsection of this article.
It was about finding a space where you can be passionate, but also solve problems for others.
You know who really “make it” working for themselves?
People who help others.
When you’re entering into the content writing fold, make everything you do about helping others.
- How can you help others live healthier lives?
- How can you help others invest and budget their money better?
- How can you help others develop more meaningful relationships with the people in their lives?
- How can you help people reduce pain
All the successful content creators in the world keep this at the front of their mission.
They understand their content and their business isn’t about themselves — it’s about the audience.
Everything they do is to help them.
Furthermore, they do things to help other creators.
- They help other creators through shout outs
- They help other creators through partnerships
- They help other creators through sharing ideas
- They help other creators with commenting, likes etc
While the writer’s life may be a solitary trade, it’s definitely a social practice when looking at it through the lens of the long-game.
Keep climbing the mountain
Let’s be honest.
No one article is going to give you all the answers.
This goes both for the content you read as well as the content you write.
Still — they both help you put one foot in front of the other and climb this never-ending mountain.
My girlfriend and I love hiking.
We’ve tackled some pretty intense climbs this year.
Hiking is similar to online content writing:
- You start off, everything is exciting
- An hour passes and the excitement fades a bit
- Another hour passes and the fatigue starts to set in
- You stop thinking about the climb as a whole but rather each step
- The climb feels like it’s never going to end
- You think you should just stop and head back down — you’ve seen enough
- You keep going
- Finally you reach the top
- That apple your girlfriend packed for you tastes like heaven
You’re going to go through similar bouts of despair, confusion, and doubt when it comes to online content writing.
You’re going to think about stopping.
You’re going to overthink each article.
You’re going to feel like you’re not making any progress.
And then you’re going to breakthrough with an article and gain some traction.
Then the sale of your products are going to taste so damn good.
And then you’ll get excited to climb that next content mountain.
After that, the mountain you’ll climb includes leaving your full-time job so you can work for yourself.
And then you’ll be saying, FML — but in the best way possible.
Ready to Make More?