Hey, Could You Help Me Out?
I’m writing this letter today Thursday June 18, because I could really use some helpful assistance.
Specifically, I’m hoping this weekend to raise a small chunk of change to quickly branch my tiny website business in a more profitable direction – one that I hope to keep me afloat as my “DIY truck camper” venture inevitably slows down... Before it's too late!
Here’s what’s up:
Since beginning my “off grid truck camper” adventure, I’ve had two important goals:
1) To completely simplify my life by drastically reducing both “life-sucking” activity and unnecessary expenses.
2) To create a self-sustaining income source that will cover my basic expenses – now just a few hundred dollars a month.
The great thing is... I have totally accomplished both of those goals! Not only have I been successfully living off the grid for 15 months – Since launching my DIY camper book and video training, I’ve also been able to keep myself afloat with a fairly consistent *self-sustaining* small stream of income that requires very little input on my part, other than tending to occasional technical issues. So that’s pretty awesome!
But with that comes a bit of a “looming threat” – Because the number of people who want to build their own simple off-grid camper is *so microscopic*, I knew going in that it wouldn’t be long before I began running out of potential customers.
Well, without even analyzing my data that much, I can confidently say: That time is now. 🙂
Despite spending the first half of 2015 greatly expanding my internet presence, my numbers of site visitors has stayed exactly the same... and since January, my sales have dropped to HALF! So I’d say that’s a good sign that it’s time to branch out in a different direction, before I find myself stuck in the middle of nowhere without gas, food, water, etc. waiting for my phone to make that happy "ding-ding!" sound to tell me I have another sale. (And today, Thursday June 18, I am literally right on the brink of that situation!)
So what next?
I’ve been mulling the next move for the last three weeks. It would seem that there are a lot of reasons to keep expanding within the “outdoors/camping” niche. The reason I started there – even knowing that I would start running out of customers soon – was that it’s what I’m already doing, so it was easy! I was already building a camper, so the strategy was just to film my camper build and write about the process. But now that I’ve already done almost everything I intended to do with the camper... now what? I still intend to finish a few projects and add a few small books and videos, but it’s become clear that at a time when I need to quickly increase my income, pushing against “diminishing returns” may not be the best strategy.
So after a lot of brainstorming, calculating, and basically soul-searching – because it’s important to me that if I’m going to put a lot of energy into something that it be something that I have a lot of long-term interest in...
I decided that my best strategy would be to return to one of my previous long-time interests. You may or may not have caught – in my bio or a podcast episode – that I was previously a hypnotherapist. I had my own office and charged $75-100/hr to help people learn to relax, lose weight, stop smoking, release chronic pain, and transform their lives in the course of a session or two. But I didn’t do that for long. Essentially I burned out, because to put it simply... I’m not actually a “people person”. I’m really a total introvert, and I’d much rather spend my time alone with my thoughts, hiking, reading, writing... Far away from it all!
And as far as that goes... Making a life where I can spend all of my time out in the wilderness far away from the hustle-and-bustle... that’s my biggest success so far! But at this moment, I definitely need some help really “stabilizing” it with a more dependable source of income that will naturally keep growing, not only because there are lots more customers, but because it’s much easier for me to create new books, videos, and audio courses that will continue to help a lot of people into the future.
So here’s my plan:
I’m going begin creating websites on Hypnosis/NLP-related topics and reviving a few high-ticket products and courses I never launched. I only need a few things to make this happen. I need a few web domains - one for my main site, and two for membership products. Not too expensive, about $30 total. More expensive will be the daily commutes to wifi, as free campsites tend to be 10 mi or so from town in low-fuel efficiency driving areas, so 2-3 weeks of doing that easily adds up to $100, and obligatory coffee purchases would add another $40.
(Funny thing is... A few months ago, I easily could have afforded that. In fact I spent the entire month of March doing exactly that. Now... not so much!)
Then there’s one more thing I really need that would make the process a lot easier and possibly reduce the need to commute quite so much. My barebones DIY solar panel that I’ve used successfully for 11 months became permanently damaged yesterday when my tarp melted onto it and then ripped it apart. Although I could certainly live without it – inefficiently recharging my battery and laptop with the engine -- I’d like to build a new set of solar panels the proper way, which I could easily do for $100 and record a new set of videos while I’m at it.
All together... adding in about $30 to cover some minimal paid advertising and a trip to my friend’s place to upload videos via residential high-speed internet – Starbuck’s won’t cut it – My goal is to come up with just $300. Anything above that I’ll use towards more paid advertising to ramp up a bit more quickly than the 3-6 months I expect to start seeing results. And meanwhile, I’ll hope to continue surviving on sales of “camper construction videos”, as I’ve been doing. 🙂
What I propose:
In exchange for your donation towards my new venture, I’d like to give a little gift in return related to my new venture.
When you give $5 or more... I’ll give you a simple "binaural beats” audio I made that’s useful to drown out background annoyances and focus on the task at hand. (I’m listening to it as I type this!)
When you give $10 or more... I’ll give you the above along with my totally unique 20 minute hypnosis audio to help you help you simultaneously feel "Relaxed, Joyful, and Confident."
When you give $25 or more... I’ll give you both of the above along with a transferable ticket to join one of my future hypnosis-related member sites for free, as a charter member, as soon as it opens. (Worth $100+)
And of course... If you’re interested to chip in towards my tiny travel budget so I can go somewhere beyond the same three forests, I’d greatly appreciate that as well! Since my tiny travel budget comes out of my “DIY camper” sales, you might consider purchasing the book or becoming a member if you haven't already. (Or alternatively, simply "earmarking" your donation in the "add a message" box.)
Thanks so much for reading! Enjoy your weekend. 🙂
(You may enter your donation amount on the next screen
where it says "Item Price")
Note: Gifts will be sent out by email next week.
p.s. I don't have a way to automatically update the donation tally, but I'll periodically post updates on my Twitter.