Every month I publish an income report…why? Good question 🙂
With all the shiny objects out there it’s easy to spend WAY more than you’re earning. Luckily I realized this early on and I’ve kept detailed records of my expenses ever since. That being said, I know that there are certain expenses that are NECESSARY when running a business. As much as I don’t want to pay for them, I need to pay for my email autoresponder, website hosting, and video hosting every month. It’s just a part of doing business. There are other things that I buy as well, but I try my best to keep my expenses SIGNIFICANTLY LESS than my revenue. If I can do that then I’m ahead of the game.
On my show I ask my guests a lot of personal questions. One that frequently comes up is “How much do you make?”. I feel like I need to reveal my own income if I’m going to be asking others the same question. It only seems right.
There are a lot of online marketers out there who fake-it-till-they-make-it. In other words, they fudge their numbers and exaggerate their earnings in order to establish false authority in their niche. My goal is that by watching my income grow slowly over time you’ll realize that there is no get-rich-quick button.
Here’s my results for February, 2015.
100,349 page views (+36,000 from January)
25,860 Youtube channel views (+1,597 from January)
131,530 minutes watched (-50,352 from January)
Aweber subscribers: 6,608 (+136 subscribers from January)
GetResponse subscribers: 5,548 (+393 subscribers from January)
Total email list subscribers: 12,156
Easy Webinar 4.0: $521.17 – I’m using this software to set up auto webinars so that people can watch when it’s suitable for them
GoToWebinar: $150 – I use this for live webinars and training
Wistia: $139.84 – This is how I host my sales videos and course content. Normally I pay a lot less, but I had some spam traffic that unfortunately I have to pay for.
Dropbox: $99 – I use dropbox to backup my business
Facebook ads: $86.38 – Ad money spent for FB list building
Aweber: $69 – This is my list building software that allows me to email everyone when there’s a new interview
GetResponse: $65 – This is the autoresponder I use for my buyer’s list and solo ads
Traffic Planet Hosting: $50 – The hosting account that I recently switched to. It’s super fast and I’m very happy with it.
oDesk Virtual Assistants: $46.25 – I have some workers helping me with daily tasks that don’t need me. I’m trying to outsource more and more daily.
TimerLay: $39.95 – A fantastic tool for adding scarcity to your sales pages
Improvely: $29 – This is a tool that I’m using to track the lifetime value of leads
Skype: $19.99 for premium – I do all my interviews with Skype and Ecamm call recorder on a Mac.
Resell Rights Weekly: $19.95 – Reoccurring membership fee for the bonuses I add from my interviews and reviews
Schedule Once: $19 – A tool I use for scheduling coaching calls
WuFoo: $14.95 – A tool that allows me to take applications for my coaching program
Sendgrid: $9.95 – This integrates with Easy Webinar 4.0 and allows me to send reminder emails to my registrants in a timely manner
Amazon S3: $4.75 – I use this to host images and videos
Total expenses: $1,384.18 (+$732.20 compared to January)
How To Get Traffic From Facebook Ads: $3,540.62 from review and interview with Reed Floren
Simple CPA Siphon (CLOSED): $2,349.69 from review and interview with Stephen Gilbert
Arbitrage Underdog RELOADED: $2,805.92 from review and interview with Tom E
Elite Video Evolution 2.0: $1,655.42 from review and interview with Ryan Phillips
Tube Sniper Pro 3.0 (CLOSED): $1,551.13 from review and interview with Joshua Zamora
Weird Niche Content: $1,188.69 from review and interview with Mark Bishop
Thrive Leads: $1,092.95 from review and interview with Shane Melaugh
Icon Lead Pro (CLOSED): $1,088.38 from review and interview with Lee Pennington
Timeline Optins (CLOSED): $922.09 from review and interview with Brett Rutecky
Digital Millionaire Mastermind (CLOSED): $914.99 from review and interview with Alex Jeffreys
Ultimate Traffic Monster (CLOSED): $856.90 from review and interview with Naidy Phoon
Easy Profits Explosion (CLOSED): $794.06 from review and interview with Stefan Ciancio
SEO Catalyst (CLOSED): $746.80 from review and preview
Video Sales Machine: $739.25 from review and interview with Matt Bush
2015 Traffic and Conversion Summit Notes (CLOSED): $672 from review and interview with Tim Castleman
Stakk (CLOSED): $475.50 from review and interview with Sam Finlay
Social Mobi Videos (CLOSED): $395 from review and interview with Karthik Ramani
Screencast Pro: $359.86 from review and interview with Joey Xoto
Online Wealth Academy (CLOSED): $222.05 from review, interview, and webinar with Mikael Dia
Viral Content Profits: $190.50 from review and interview with Ricky Mataka
HydraVid: $166.42 from review and interview with Walt Bayliss
Explaindio: $141 from review and interview with Nick LaPolla
WP Freshstart: $136.67 from review and preview video
Super Affiliate Machine (CLOSED): $132 from review and interview with Austin Anthony
The Magic Email (CLOSED): $114.24 from review and interview with Nathan Zadworny
The Fiverr Handover (CLOSED): $102.12 from review and interview with Fergal Downes
Video Maker FX: $85 from review and interview with Peter Roszak
Easy VSL: $72 from review and interview with Mark Thompson
Crowd Search Me (CLOSED): $69.75 from review and interview with Daniel Anton
Easy Webinar 4.0: $68.43 from review and interview with Casey Zeman
Video Jacker: $62 from review and interview with Chris Fox
Product Launch Incubator (CLOSED): $59.18 from review and interview with Emilis “Emka” Strimaitis
Rapid Mailer: $57 from review and interview with Sean Donahoe
Vidlify (CLOSED): $56 from review and interview with Radu Hahaianu
InstaHook Video Backgrounds: $54.40 from review and interview with Brad Scott
IMNow Webinar (CLOSED): $48.50 from review and interview with Keith Lynch
Absolute Jacker (CLOSED): $41.50 from review and interview with Ariel Sanders
Creative Post: $31.05 from review and interview with Guillermo Mata
Kindle Money Mastery: $30.46 from review and interview with Stefan Pylarinos
Fresh Store Builder (CLOSED): $28.50 from review and interview with Carey Baird
Tee Cash Boot Camp: $25.90 from review and interview with Andy Berard
Smart Blog Networks (CLOSED): $24.46 from review and interview with Simon Warner
Emergency Christmas Cash 2.0 (CLOSED): $24.14 from review and interview with Kristie Chiles
Hero Tower (CLOSED): $23.50 from review and interview with Ross Carrel
Azon Video Vault (CLOSED): $23.50 from review and interview with M. Bari
1K Whirlwind (CLOSED): $21.28 from review and interview with Barry Rodgers and Andrew Brocklehurst
Funnel Vision (CLOSED): $14.97 from review and interview with Dr. Ben Adkins
Solo Ad Business Blueprint (CLOSED): $11.60 from interview with Kate Rosenberg
Complete PLR Mastery (CLOSED): $9.28 from review and interview with Barry Rodgers
Inner Circle Solo Ads 3.0 (CLOSED): $9 from interview with Rob Stafford
Arbitrage Autopilot Profits (CLOSED): $8.76 from review and interview with Zak Loveday
Tee Blueprint (CLOSED): $8.50 from review and interview with Manny Hanif
Ad Factory (CLOSED): $8.10 from review and interview with Russ Schneider
Long Tail Pro: $7.60 from interview with Spencer Haws
Solo Ad Escape: $7.48 from review and interview with Kevin Fahey
CPA Warrior (CLOSED): $7.38 from review and interview with Fergal Downes
Total revenue from interviews: $24,353.47 (-$4,133.71 from January)
Private Coaching students: $4,885.22 – In this program I teach how to make money from affiliate marketing, list building, and product creation. If you’re interested in joining you can APPLY HERE.
Affiliate Income Secrets: $2,242.76 – My product teaching how I make money from affiliate marketing
Resell Rights Weekly: $69.85 – This is a website that has a ton of products that you can use as your own
Kindle earnings: $25
Total from OTHER streams of income: $7,222.83 (+$4,517.38 from January)
Total Revenue: $31,576.30 (+$383.76 from January)
Total Profit: $30,192.12 (-$348.53 from January)
I’m a bit behind on getting this income report out…but better late than never…and the thing on my mind is this: taxes and debt.
In 2014 I paid the minimum amount necessary, which is 100% of the previous tax year based on my previous income bracket. I made $17,565 in 2013 and paid $2,484 in taxes, therefore I had to pay at least $2,484 to be covered against any penalties in 2014 (I ended up paying $3,500 to be sure). I didn’t make estimated payments every quarter as I prefer having as much liquid cash as possible, and I’d rather make interest on my money.
I made $177,434 in 2014 so I ended up with a significant tax bill. As an American living abroad I get a bit of a tax break, but I still pay a hefty self-employment tax. I estimated that I would owe about $20,000 to $30,000 in taxes, but that bill ended up actually being $38,000, plus $9,500 for my first quarter estimated tax payment for 2015. I learned about this in mid-February, and fortunately I had put aside $50,000 in preparation, so I was ready to pay it. However, my wife had other plans 🙂
She had started looking into buying our first apartment. She had her eye on a small 2-bedroom place close to her parents,which would be convenient for everyone once we have kids. After negotiating, the price was about $170,000. With the $50,000 that I had saved for taxes, we had $150,000 in cash to put towards it, therefore only having to take out a $20,000 mortgage. But of course I was hesitant. If I used the $50,000 I would need to make $44,500 (I had already paid $3,500) by April 15th. That seemed like a LOT of pressure.
I explained my apprehensions to my wife. But she asked, “how much did you make in January?”
I answered, “$30,000.”
“And how much will you make in February?” she asked.
“$25,000 to $30,000” I said.
“Ok, so at that rate, in March and the first two weeks of April you’ll make $40,000 to $60,000. You can do it. Trust yourself.”
I tend to doubt myself a lot, and I’m grateful to my wife for her faith in me. I swear, I couldn’t have done all this without her. After having my rankings for 750 Adsense websites that were making me over $100 per day WIPED out overnight from a Google algorithm update I’m a bit paranoid. I try to be prepared for disaster, and thats why I get a bit uneasy when I don’t have fluid cash reserves in the bank.
And the thought of taking out a mortgage, even for just $20,000, made me uneasy. I HATE paying interest. I have a couple credit cards with a spending limit of over $20,000. Some people think that’s a license to spend, but I just see it as a way of making money when I spend on everyday things by earning points that I can redeem for cash, plane tickets, or other fun stuff. So, I always pay off the full balance on my credit card every month….and reap the rewards for spending 🙂
If we bought this apartment I’d go from financially secure and in the green, to having $44,500 in unpaid taxes and owing $20,000 for my apartment. That’s a total of $64,500! Thats the amount that I needed to get back into the green again and be debt free.
So what did we do? We got the apartment…and the mortgage that came with it 🙂 Unfortunately we can’t move in until October (there’s a renter inside), but the rent money will pay for our current rent. We’re still not technically living “rent-free” as we’re making payments on the $20,000 mortgage, but hopefully in the near future one of the BIGGEST expenses in our lives will be a thing of the past. For me that’s TRUE wealth.
Stay tuned for my upcoming March income report where I’ll be talking about how being in debt and under pressure has affected my business…and my life.
In the comments below let me know your take on taxes, debt…and insecurity.
You are a true entrepreneurial success story Mike. You lost everything with the google update but you have now turned that around to a $30,000 per month empire.
Keep it up mate,
Glad to know you, Fergal. It’s been two years that we’ve known each other now…and I’m looking forward learning more from you 🙂
Here’s our first interview almost two years ago to the day https://mikefrommaine.com/episode-132-how-fergal-downes-rebuilt-his-4000-subscriber-list-when-it-was-deleted-while-he-was-on-vacation/
Awesome job Mike, thanks for sharing. As for taxes, money, investments, I suggest getting Tony Robbins book called Money Master Game. Get advice from Billionaires.
Congrats on the the real estate purchase, look to generate more revenue streams.
Thanks for the advice. I read Tony’s book about a month or two ago…great read. The biggest take away for me was that you don’t need as much money as you think to be set for life living off interest and dividends. I think I calculated that I could survive off of $300,000 in the bank just off the returns…if invested wisely.
Thanks for watching!
Yay Mike – Congrats! Like you Google wiped out MY Adsense income a few years back which is why I have multiple income streams now. Not doing WSO’s these days so a future interview is unlikely but well done and more power to you 🙂
I think Adsense websites are a great way to get started, but there are just way too many variables that can wipe you out.
Are you done doing products in general, or just WSOs?
Epic Mike just Epic! Buying a home was my greatest pleasure so far in life. You also show that being honest, open and giving value works wonders.
It’s a big step, Huw, but one that I’ll be happy I did later on in life. Keep up the great work with your show 🙂
Thanks Mike. The site is being revamped as we speak. 🙂
This was a great read. Huge congrats on your purchase Mike!
Your story is so motivating! I’m sure you’ll keep crushing it these next few months.
Thanks, Mehdi…glad to see you believe in me. Good luck with your launch this week.
Mike always doing big things I see 😀
Love to watch your progress! Every month you just grow and grow and I LOVE to see the progress. Keep going big man!
Thanks, Dan. Looking forward to watching how you build up your “Duplicate Dan” brand.
I felt amazing when I saw all your reports and thoughts about your life and problems. Thanks for sharing all this and it is absolutely motivating to read such type of report. Please, keep doing it. Wish you each month to be better than the previous.
Glad to inspire you, Dr. Bo. Good luck with your upcoming launch.
phenomenal success Mike.
I absolutely love to see this.
One of my favorites in the industry. You’ve supported me from the beginning, Walt…thanks!
Hi Mike! well done! I remember a couple of years ago when you interviewed me, that you were so afraid about starting again as you lost all your income from your adsense sites…look at you now! very happy for you!
Way back to episode 50 🙂 Thanks for coming on my show even when I didn’t send you many sales…here’s the interview https://mikefrommaine.com/how-to-make-money-online-with-the-social-media-aggregator-rebel-mouse-with-jimmy-mancini/
Go read my tax email and come to me if you need further advice!
For the rest keep going like that! You are an inspiration for my IM every day!
Thanks for the tax advice 🙂
No hype, lives way off the beaten path, doesn’t get to events to network every month or two, and likely can’t get a great broadband connection.
And all he has done is leverage a strong work ethic, an “everyday guy” personality, and continuous action to accomplish the Internet dream.
Mike’s story is a continuing source of inspiration.
Always glad to have you here, Jerry. I’ll always remember the tips you gave me about how to shake someone’s hand in business…classic.
I don’t think your product is for sale anymore, but here’s the interview https://mikefrommaine.com/how-to-build-rapport-instantly-with-a-client-as-soon-as-you-walk-into-their-office-with-jerry-roberts/
Hey Mike you have done absolutely amazing man. Your consistency has paid off and it’s great you have a supportive wife. As for your organisation well done, alot of people wouldn’t be so I’m sure. Keep it up man and hope everything runs smoothly as possible 🙂
One of the hardest things for entrepreneurs is convincing their spouses that what they’re doing will actually “work out” in the end.
When I first met my wife I was making under $500 per month. Now it’s $20,000-$30,000….and she’s been supportive the whole time 🙂
Thanks for watching!
Great job Mike. Thanks for your transparency… it helps us all with the way to run a real business.
You’re welcome, Don. I hope that my example can help show people that no one starts out making thousands per month. It’s a slow process…but it’s achievable.
Mike, I love your transparency and honesty in reporting your income. Plus, I just LOVE to watch it increase month after month! you are very inspiring and motivating – thank you for your willingness to share such personal information:)
You’re welcome, Karen. I’m looking forward to seeing that product that you’re working on.
Mike, thanks for publishing your financial data. It helps put this internet marketing thing in perspective. It also shows, if one reads between the lines just a bit, that you do lots more than “drive your Ferrari to the beach where you sit and drink exotic drinks every day” as many would have us believe.
Which brings up a question: I’ve not seen you publish or even comment on your work schedule. Care to share a typical week’s work with us? I KNOW you’re not “making 30K each month while working only 20 min. per day from a coffee house.”
I really do appreciate it and intend to share personal info as you do —when/if I ever have anything worth sharing!
Great question, Keith.
I’ve been asked multiple times how much I “work” per week. Well, to be completely honest, I work all the time, but it’s not really “work” for me.
For example, I love going through different IM products, watching videos, reading PDFs, going through case studies, testing out software. That’s technically “work” for me, but I enjoy it.
As far as my work schedule goes…here’s what it looks like on a typical day:
10am- Roll out of bed, have breakfast, check emails, check out what’s going on in Facebook world
noon- Have lunch, get ready to record the day’s product review
2pm- Record my review and post it to the website
4-6pm- Do 1-2 interviews or presell videos for the week
7-9pm- Check out upcoming product launches and choose which one I’ll promote
10pm- Prepare interview/presell for publishing
1-2am- Publish interview/presell video
As you an see I do everything slowly throughout the day. If I had to condense it down, I could get everything done in 2 hours per day easily.
I LOVE my job…and there’s nothing else I’d rather do.
Yet again awesome to see man – love it!!
Thanks, Wilco. Looking forward to see what you put out when you get home from traveling.
Congrats on the new apartment!! It looks really nice. By October, you can fill the second bedroom!!!
Yes, and then you’ll have to visit 🙂
Always enjoy your insightful and honest posts
You got this =)
Thanks for another awesome report Mike. I especially love the segment on taxes. I can only speak for Americans, but I think most entrepreneurs or would be’s have no idea how difficult it can be managing your finance when your income skyrockets or plummets. Both are hard. I had an awesome 2013, and lost a dependent (aged out) – and had a similar scenario to what you experienced.
If you fail to plan out your quarterlies – you could be in for a heap of trouble come tax time. Thanks again.