Category Archives: Goals / Journal

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2010 in Review / 2011 Goals

This is a post that I meant to write towards the end of last month but never actually got around to it. I spent the end of 2010 and the beginning of 2011 in New Zealand and just couldn’t find the time during our travels to really sit down and flesh out what my goals are going to be. I’ve had a lot of discussion with my wife and with Josh Bartlett (my business partner) about what some of my goals are but, until now, I haven’t committed to them in any form of writing.

Earlier today I decided to take a little stroll down memory lane… I started this blog in July of 2009 and I decided that it would kind of be cool to go back through and read my old posts. Sometimes I really take for granted how far I’ve come. Reading through my old posts literally brought tears to my eyes. Just remembering back to some of my early struggles and putting myself back in to places where I got so excited about things that I’d now probably consider fairly insignificant. Back then it was those small triumphs that kept me driving forward. It was those little wins here and there that kept the belief in my mind that I could be successful in business on my own.

I read one of my early posts where I described how excited I was to have 61 subscribers on a mailing list. Today I have over 20,000 subscribers and it probably grows between 50-100 subscribers every single day. I read a post about the day that I finally knew I was going to make it… I had made $300 over a three week period… In another post I talk about how The WordPress Classroom was such a huge success because I officially had 20 members. A couple of days ago the WordPress Classroom passed 1,200 members.

I hope you enjoy my blog and I hope that reading my posts has helped you in some way or another. What I never realized in the past is how much of a huge impact my blog posts would make on me in the future. Reading back through my blog and imagining the scale at which my business has grown over the past year and half has really hit me like a hammer. I’ve come a long way! I will never take for granted how I started. If I haven’t been keeping this blog over the past 18 months, I don’t even know if I would have really taken this step back to really reflect on my progress.

As a funny little side note, I found this image of what The WordPress Classroom looked like when I first opened it up. I’m actually curious to find out if there’s anyone reading my blog who was actually a member back when this is what the WordPress Classroom looked like… It’s definitely come a long way!

Those were my awesome Photoshop skills back before I learned that I should hire people to do that stuff for me. I always read that I needed to outsource but was always afraid to incur the expense. I know a lot of people are afraid of spending money to get their online business going before they’re actually making money but take my word for it… Learn to leverage other people’s skills and you will reach your goals so much faster than if you attempt to do it all yourself.

So what I want to do in this portion of my blog is look at the goals I set for 2010 and hold myself accountable. I’ll admit right now that I didn’t meet every single one of them but I did come damn close… So here it goes.

2010 Goals Recap and score card

Business Goals:

  • Launch my new product (6 figures in sales) February LaunchI launched the Autopilot Cash Formula in April of 2010. I was a little behind schedule and the launch fell slightly short of hitting the six figure mark (but not by much).
  • Build my list to over 20,000 subscribers – I originally set a goal of passing 10,000 subscribers but a few people told me that I wasn’t shooting high enough. I set my sights on 20,000 instead and managed to pass that number in October.
  • Create at least one blog post per week - Failed miserably. I got so caught up in the other aspects of my business that I completely neglected my blog. Towards the end of the year I managed to start to pick up the pace again.
  • Promote more product launches – I definitely promoted some great product launches. My philosophies changed a bit over the course of the year. It’s no longer a goal to promote a ton of product launches. It’s now my goal to get the products that I find will be the most beneficial to my followers in front of them. This mindset shift naturally means less promoting other people’s products.
  • Rank #1 in at least one launch lead contest - I didn’t hit #1 on any leaderboards. I came in 7th when Josh launched Easy Video Player, 7th when Mike Filsaime launched AffiliateDotCom and 7th when Adeel Chowdry launched Hyper Facebook Traffic. (The later two I promoted with Josh Bartlett) I seem to be stuck at 7… But again, my mindset shifted away from promotions and I didn’t promote as many launches as I actually could have.
  • Round up an army of affiliates to promote current and future products – I definitely did this. When I launched Autopilot Cash Formula in April, I had over 500 affiliates on board. I currently have around 300 affiliates actively promoting The WordPress Classroom.
  • Launch a monthly membership site to build a recurring income - I switched the model of the WordPress Classroom from a one time fee to a monthly membership. This has been a huge success and everyone seems to agree that I still over-deliver for the price! I also partnered with Josh Bartlett to launch the Elite Marketing Foundation. This is another monthly membership site that is growing rapidly.
  • Set up a coaching program with a partner – The Elite Marketing Foundation with Josh is the beginning phase of the coaching. We are working together to help as many people through mastermind calls and webinars as possible.
  • Attend at least 4 internet marketing related seminars – Done and Done. I attended Affiliate Appreciation in Vegas in January, List Control in San Diego in May, the Info-Summit in Baltimore in November and AffiliateDotCom Live in Vegas in November. I made a ton of new contacts and have built some strong relationships. I also joined the local San Diego chapter of the Glazer-Kennedy Inner Circle which meets once per month.

Personal Goals

  • Finish remodel of master bathroom - Finished this project January of 2010.
  • Remodel guest bathroom - Finished this project January of 2010.
  • Cut back on the sweets and the junk food - I basically created a whole new diet for myself that limits carbs and almost completely cuts out sugary foods. I’m still sticking with it. (Although I’ll admit I’ve fallen off the wagon a few times during periods of travel)
  • Exercise at least 4 times per week - I managed to maintain a 5 day per week exercise schedule for a good part of the year. Once again, constant travel really interfered. (I was away from my home for a grand total of 10 weeks in 2010)
  • Purchase a netbook - Bought a netbook, outgrew it, bought a MacBook and can’t live without it.
  • Purchase a Jacuzzi – Still working on this one. Decided to spend money on travel and this was something I’ve sacrificed.
  • Make enough income that wife is comfortable leaving her job - We’re still working on this one as well. Although my income has probably gotten to a point where she can safely quit, it’s still a scary leap. We just haven’t felt comfortable enough to take that next step.

Goals for 2011

Business Goals

  • Triple my current monthly income
  • Build my list past 100,000 subscribers (Shooting for the stars)
  • Launch a new membership site (More broad than just WordPress)
  • Develop and launch a piece of software that makes life easier
  • Introduce direct mail marketing in to my business
  • Create one new piece of content every day / 5 days per week (This will be hard!)
  • Speak live at at least one live event
  • Attend a minimum of 4 more marketing events
  • Write a book on my journey so far

Personal Goals

  • Stick with my low-carb / low-sugar diet
  • 6 pack abs by June (Never had them in my life. This is the year)
  • Leave the country at least twice
  • Attend the Rugby World Cup in New Zealand in November
  • Begin taking Improv Comedy classes in March
  • Become a regular ToastMasters attendee (Starting tonight)
  • Alana finally quits her job
  • Buy a new house (Minimum 4 bedrooms)

As you can see, I’m setting my goals quite high. I’ve learned that when it comes to goal setting I need to set my goals for a notch past what I conceive myself capable of. I’d rather set a goal of a 100,000 mailing list and fail because I only hit 98,000 than set a goal of 30,000 and hit it and stop trying. I don’t think any of my goals are completely out of reach if I do everything that I know that I need to do. If I stick with the plan that I’m laying out for myself, every single item on my list should be a definitive success this time next year.

What are your 2011 goals? Is there any advice you’d give me in achieving my goals? I want to hear from you! Your feedback is what keeps me going.

Thanks so much and I can’t wait to hear what everyone else is striving to accomplish this year.

teach

How I Got To Where I Am Today

I’ve never really told the full story of how I went from no job and very little online income to where I am today.

As of this month, my blog has now been online for one year. In fact, my first post ever was on July 1st, 2009. It wasn’t until August of 2009, however, that I really started to make some good money online. I had several blogs running all over the internet that were making me a few hundred dollars per month total but the real income didn’t start coming until August of last year.

There was actually one simple thing that I started doing that turned everything around for me. In fact, the recent changes that I’ve made to my business and my online philosophies have been because I have been looking back on how I got to where I am today. My new standards and ideals are less of a reinvention and more of me just getting back to my roots.

The thing that I really started to do in July of last year that really paid off is that I started helping people… And I don’t mean that I charged for every piece of advice that I gave. I mean that I actively went in to forums and hunted down people that were looking for help. When I found them, I wrote up long explanations and, sometimes, even recorded videos of how they can solve their problem.

My timeline looked something like this:

2006-2009 – I made lots of blogs and built them to where they were making a combined total of a couple hundred dollars per month. This was not enough to pay the bills and when I lost my job in May of ’09, this was not going to cut it.

May 2009 – I discovered The Warrior Forum. I began to jump from one “make money online” method to another. I also began actively searching out people that had questions related to WordPress and blogging. I wrote long replies and tried to do whatever I could to help them solve their problems. I figured that if there was anything that I felt like I was an authority in, it was WordPress and blogging.

July 2009 – This is where things started to get exciting! I joined Alex Jeffrey’s coaching program using a credit card because I did not have the money in the bank to pay up front. One of the first things that Alex taught right in the beginning is that everyone needs to build a blog. The coaching program was great but there wasn’t a lot of explanation on exactly how to set up a blog…

This worked out perfect for me! I joined the right program at the right time. I jumped right in to the forum on day one and started offering to help anyone who needed it. I was able to help a very large majority of his students get their blogs up and cranking. I was the most active person in that forum.

I continued to record more and more videos for people so that I wouldn’t have to explain things twice. Eventually, I registered TheWordpressClassroom.com. I now had a place to send them to watch my training videos and collect opt-ins at the same time.

July was also the month that I set up MatthewWolfe.com. I wanted another venue to teach people but I wanted it to be a place where I can expand my teachings beyond just WordPress. MatthewWolfe.com allowed me to share my goals, my progress, my personal stories, and the general internet marketing tips that I’ve been learning along the way.

Since I was constantly going out of my way to help others, they reciprocated by visiting my blog, reading my ramblings, and leaving comments and feedback. This made my blog appear to be a very popular place right from the start. My search engine rankings climbed and when random visitors popped in off the search engines, they saw all of the of action going on. They decided this was a happening blog and they kept coming back. This created a momentum that has caused my blog to just keep on growing…

August 2009 – I opened the doors to the WordPress Classroom. I had no concept of what a launch was at this point… I literally just put the buy-now button up and started announcing it in the forums, on my blog, and to the very small mailing list that I had at the time (something like 300 subscribers).

I opened the doors late at night on August 1st, 2009. When I woke up in the morning on August 2nd, I looked in my Paypal account and started jumping up and down and dancing like crazy. I had 20 people join The WordPress Classroom over night. That was the first time that I ever made more than $100 in a single day online. This wasn’t a million dollar launch and I still haven’t paid off my mortgage but this was the day that I realized that I was going to have a legitimate online business. I knew from that point, that this would turn in to something much bigger.

From that point on it’s been somewhat of a blur. I kept working on more and more ways to get people to visit the site. I was introduced to the concepts of things like adswaps and JV giveaways. I also learned that I could sell The WordPress Classroom on the Warrior Forum, where I had originally gotten my start, and get it in front of a very targeted audience. That was a huge revelation for me and it eventually led to my first $1,000 day.

In April of this year, I launched The Autopilot Cash Formula which basically taught people the business model behind The WordPress Classroom. This time I followed the full launch process and had another huge success. It was a great product and it received a great reception but I always felt like The WordPress Classroom was my baby… If it wasn’t for me trying to teach people WordPress, I wouldn’t be anywhere today…

This leads me to where I am now. I have completely decided to go back to my roots. Hopefully, this has become evident by the fact that I’ve refocused my e-mail campaigns to almost nothing but cool free content. I’ve also shifted the majority of my focus on what got me to where I am today… The WordPress Classroom.

The WordPress Classroom has come a long way! It has just passed 750 members. To make things even better, I don’t think I’ve ever had one person tell me that they were unhappy with it.

Just this last week, I opened the WordPress Classroom 2.0 which features new videos, new themes, a new layout, and, best of all, a brand new forum where myself and the members can do the one main thing that got me to where I am today… Help people.

If you are interested in The WordPress Classroom, you can learn more by clicking this link. Check out the new design and the free videos that I’ve provided. If you feel like upgrading, there’s a special bonus offer in there too. :)

I am so grateful to be where I am today and if you intend to make a good living online, the best advice that I can give is to help as many people as possible. I give you my 100% guarantee that it will pay off!

“You will get all you want in life if you help enough other people get what they want.” – Zig Ziglar

If you like this post, do me a huge favor and click the “like” button. Please leave your comments. I love reading your feedback!

Where Have I Been?

I have been working on so much lately. I feel like I’m still neglecting my blog a little bit, despite the fact that blogging is what got me started in this business in the first place. Anyway, here’s a little recap of what I’ve been up to and what I’ve accomplished…

By the way, thanks so much to everyone who answered my survey. I’ve realized that anyone of those topics are good to discuss on here. I’ve got literally hundreds of ideas for new posts.

Vegas Baby!
In mid-January, I took a trek with Joe Fier and Josh Bartlett up to Vegas. It was Mike Filsaime’s affiliate appreciation weekend and Alex Jeffreys was putting on a seminar. It was an amazing time and we had the opportunity to do some real face to face networking. We were hanging out with the likes of Mike Filsaime, John Reese, ShoeMoney, Joe Jablonski, Russell Brunson, Jason Moffatt, Keith Wellman, Sam Knoll and many more of the biggest names in internet marketing.

We first arrived on Thursday, January 21st and almost immediately met up with Alex Jeffreys for some drinks. We played some poker and then got in touch with David Chamberlain, David Walker, Dean Holland, and Dan Briffa for some more drinks. The next day was the networking event at club Tabu. This is where we met and hung out with some of the biggest names in the game.

Saturday night was the big party. Every internet marketer that I could think of met up at club Lavo in the Pallazzo hotel. This was a huge bash in the VIP section with an open bar of top shelf drinks. I’ll tell you right now that I slept in quite a bit the next morning…

We relaxed a bit on Sunday and then attended day one of Alex Jeffrey’s seminar. There were some good discussions but my favorite presenter had to be Jit Uppal. I really like his presentation because his business model is very similar to mine. It really validated that I was on the right path. Later that evening, we had the opportunity to meet up with all of our pals from the Marketing With Alex class. I’ll list some names but I’m almost sure to miss a few… Marcus Passey, Dean Holland, Adam Spiel, Gary Simpson, Garry Parks, Paul Wilson, David Walker, David Chamberlain, Jean Shaw, Dan Briffa, Marc Milburn, Anthony Smits, and so many more…

Unfortunately, business obligations kept us from attending the second day of Alex’s seminar but we did get the opportunity to network some more with a lot of the people mentioned above later that evening.

All in all, Vegas was an amazing experience… Maybe it was a little long for us but we had a good time, nonetheless. I made a little montage video that I think really shows the “vibe” of the whole Vegas trip. Enjoy. :)

What else has been going on?

That’s a huge question because I’ve been up to a lot! I promoted Josh Bartlett’s Easy Video Player and ended up as number eight on his leader board. I was holding strong at 4th place for a while but got knocked down when the big guns started promoting. I guess it’s not too bad when the people that are above you on the leaderboard are people like Mike Filsaime, Ewen Chia, and Jason Moffatt. Nonetheless, I managed to finish a competition in the top 10 and walk away with a new HD video camera (I shot the video above with it) and an iPod touch. I’m happy about that because it was one of my goals for this year.

I also did a test launch on my latest product called The Autopilot Cash Formula. It’s an eBook and about 25 videos all about my entire business model. I explain pretty much everything that I’ve been doing over the last several months. It goes in to list building, product creation, and exactly how I manage to generate so many leads to an affiliate offer. I wasn’t expecting a whole lot on my test launch but it actually went crazy. The testimonials started rolling in and people started asking how they could promote it as well. Due to this, I decided that I’m going to roll out a full scale launch of this product. It’s going to be complete with lead contest prizes and sales contest prizes. The official launch date will now be April 15th, 2010. So put it on your calendar because it should be a good opportunity to make some money selling a product that converts like crazy. If you want to sign up as an affiliate, here’s the affiliate sign up page. It’s not quite all there yet but you can sign up as an affiliate. More tools will be added as the launch date comes closer.

An unexpected result of the success of The Autopilot Cash Formula test launch is that The WordPress Classroom has gained momentum as well. I haven’t been promoting it but people started buying it again because they wanted to see what else I had to offer. It’s been really amazing. I have now decided that after my full launch of The Autopilot Cash Formula, I’m going to revamp and update all of the videos within the WordPress Classroom. I’ll probably add about 10 more videos based on common questions and boost the price once again. I’ll continue to sell it at the current price for now but I think I could relaunch it at somewhere around $97… We’ll see. I’d love to hear some opinions on this.

Due to the success I’ve been seeing, I went out and upgraded my tools. I bought myself a brand new iMac and a brand new Netbook. The iMac is amazing for editing videos. I have no idea how I ever did video without my Mac now. My Netbook is just perfect for when I’m on the road. I can still respond to e-mails and chat over Skype from anywhere in the world. I feel like I’m really in the modern age now.

Anyway, that’s what’s been going on. I really do have a good sized list of blog posts that will be coming up. I’m going to start getting deeper and deeper in to list building techniques as well as blogging.

Please leave some comments. What would you like to read? Did you go to Vegas? Etc… I want to hear from you!

2009 In Review / 2010 Goals

2009 has been the absolute best year of my life, both professionally and personally.

I set some goals for myself back in July of this year and I crushed every single one of them. I don’t want this post to come off as me bragging but I really am proud of what I have managed to accomplish.

I’m not sure how many people have read my original story. I will give a quick summary.

My family owned are own business that made window coverings. We ran the business for about 12 years. The economy hit the business hard and, instead of filing for bankruptcy, we opted to sell the company. The new owner kept most of my family on board but he was an insanely mean and abusive boss. From the day he took over, I knew that I needed to find a way out.

I was engaged to be married in May, I had just recently purchased my own home in November of 2008, and I absolutely hated my job. It seemed like the worst time in the world to leave.

In May of 2009, about 3 days before my wedding day, I decided that I was never going back. I would quit my job, go on my honeymoon, and come back to a fresh start. That’s exactly what I did.

It was scary for a little while. I applied for jobs all over town with no replies back and I was denied unemployment because I quit my job. I hunted all over the internet for answers to how I could make money online. I had been blogging for years and was making some income off of that but it was not nearly enough to cover all of my expenses. I had to figure something out.

I came across a coaching program in July of ’09 put on by Alex Jeffreys. I thought that this was the answer to what I was looking for. I put the $1,000 coaching course on a credit card and prayed that this guy could teach me how to make an income online.

The class was hugely beneficial but maybe not for the reasons you might assume. I did learn a lot from his coaching but most of it I already knew. He just helped reinforce what my goals and what my focus should be. The absolute biggest thing that I got out of this coaching was connections. A forum opened up and I made contact with some brilliant minds. These people helped me strategize what my focuses should be and how I should build my business. They made all the difference in the world. Josh Bartlett, David Chamberlain, David Walker, and Joe Fier (My inner circle), you guys are amazing and I appreciate everything you have done for me this year!

In August of ’09, I launched the WordPress Classroom. I didn’t expect a whole lot from it. I basically created it because I had so many people ask me questions about WordPress. Instead of explaining it over and over again, I just recorded videos and shot the videos over to people. Before I knew it, I had over 50 videos recorded. Josh (Bartlett) told me that I should try to sell the videos.

I put the offer up on the Warrior Forum as a WSO and I e-mailed my small list (about 150 at the time) with the details of the product launch.

I couldn’t believe it… It sold nearly 100 copies in the first week that I opened it up. It still continues to sell about 4 copies per day like clockwork.

While selling this product, I managed to build a mailing from close to 0 subscribers to close to 5,000 subscribers.

The last couple of months have been spent putting time in to creating a new product. It’s a combination of an ebook and a ton of videos. I really want to over-deliver on this and make a huge launch out of it. It should be a great way to kick off the new year.

Here’s a quick recap of 2009

  • May ’09 – Quit My Job
  • May ’09 – Married my beautiful girlfriend of 6 years.
  • June ’09 – Discovered Alex Jeffrey’s Coaching and signed up
  • July ’09 – Started this blog that you are reading
  • July ’09 – Started learning from the coaching modules
  • July ’09 – Met my “inner circle” (Josh, Joe, David, & David)
  • Aug. ’09 – Launched the WordPress Classroom
  • Aug. ’09 – Created my MTV Cribs Style Video
  • Sept. ’09 – Won a video contest for my Cribs video ($1,000 prize)
  • Sept. ’09 – My mailing list broke that 1,000 subscriber barrier
  • Oct. ’09 – Began working on new product (Tentatively called List Building Classroom)
  • Oct. ’09 – Mailing list broke 1,500 subscribers
  • Nov. ’09 – Mailing list passed both the 2,000 mark then the 3,000 mark
  • Nov. ’09 – WordPress Classroom accepted by Clickbank. Affiliates Jump on Board.
  • Dec. ’09 – Promote the launch of Mike Filsaime’s 7 Figure Code
  • Dec. ’09 – Came in 10th place in an early lead contest for the 7FC
  • Dec. ’09 – Broke 4,000 subscribers then broke 4,500 subscribers
  • Dec. ’09 – Wrote a long blog post about my year in review

So, as you can see, it’s been a pretty eventful year. I married my wife, broke free from my oppressive job, and built a small business that has managed to top the income of my previous job.

All that’s left to do now is to set some new goals to smash in 2010…

Goals for 2010

Here’s a list of the goals that I’m setting for myself by the end of the 2010. I’m going to analyze these goals closer and set deadlines, as well as rank them in order of importance. I’ll fill you in on all that in a later post.

Business Goals:

  • Launch my new product (6 figures in sales) February Launch
  • Build my list to over 20,000 subscribers
  • Create at least one blog post per week (I’ve been slacking)
  • Promote more product launches
  • Rank #1 in at least one launch lead contest
  • Round up an army of affiliates to promote current and future products
  • Launch a monthly membership site to build a recurring income
  • Set up a coaching program with a partner
  • Attend at least 4 internet marketing related seminars

Personal Goals

  • Finish remodel of master bathroom (It’s currently gutted)
  • Remodel guest bathroom
  • Cut back on the sweets and the junk food
  • Exercise at least 4 times per week
  • Purchase a netbook
  • Purchase a Jacuzzi
  • Make enough income that wife is comfortable leaving her job

As you can see, my goals haven’t changed dramatically from before. I still want to create a six figure and then a seven figure business. I still want my wife to quit her job. 2010 is the year I make it all happen.

What are your goals for 2010? Please comment. I’d love to hear from you. Maybe I can help you make them possible. We’ll never know unless you make yourself heard!

Here’s to an amazing 2010!

Matt Wolfe