Welcome to my June 2019 income report. Last month, I was able to generate side income earnings of $5,127.16, with a net profit of $4,213.46.
The total month-on-month revenue was up by 13.85% and the profits were up by 5.04% (profits were lower because of new expenses as you’ll see below.)
Last month, there wasn’t much creative output, at least in terms of new blog posts.
This was mainly because we spent a lot of time travelling last month in the last two weeks of June. My wife and I took a short vacation to Hong Kong and Macau. We spent two wonderful days at Hong Kong Disneyland and had a truly magical time.
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Word of advice: If you’re going to Disneyland anytime soon — any Disneyland theme park around the world — be sure to buy two-day tickets because you’ll need two days to cover all the rides and attractions in this gigantic theme park. And if you’re going to Hong Kong Disneyland, don’t miss out on Mystic Manor. You can buy the tickets via Klook — an app for booking travel activities across Asia.
As always, before I reveal my side income earnings, let’s take a look at some of the key highlights of the month.
(To learn more about why I started maintaining monthly income reports, visit this page)
My New Investments: Design Pickle and Audio-Technica ATR2100 Microphone
Although you’ll find these two purchases in the expenses column for this month’s income report, they are nonetheless investments. With Design Pickle, the graphics on my blog will look much more professional and with the ATR2100 microphone, the sound quality of my podcast episodes and videos will be much better. So that’s why I consider them worthwhile investments.
I had been wrestling with the idea whether I should hire a dedicated graphic designer for quite some time. Then I accidentally stumbled upon Design Pickle after watching one of WPCrafter’s videos. Hat tip to Adam from WPCrafter for recommending this service. If you’re a WordPress user, I’d urge you to follow his channel on YouTube which is packed with reviews and walkthroughs of some of the most widely-used WordPress plugins and themes. Click here to subscribe to his channel.
Design Pickle is a leading flat-rate graphic design service. Their services start from $399/month. Once I signed up for their standard plan, I was assigned a dedicated graphic designer to take care of my design needs.
Until now, I was designing my graphics via tools like Canva, Venngage, and to a lesser extent, DesignBold. It was a chore and it took up a considerable amount of my time.
I’m currently using Design Pickle for designing blog post graphics, social media posts, infographics, and YouTube thumbnails.
It’s just been a few weeks since I started using their services, but for the time being, I’m satisfied with their work. Hopefully, they do a stellar job in the future as well.
Content Creation — Latest (and Updated) Blog Posts, Videos, and Podcast Episodes
Not a whole lot of new content published last month in terms of blog posts, but there were four new podcast episodes, two of them featuring special guests.
I also published an eBook on SEMrush Traffic Analytics — an add-on tool ($200/mo in addition to a regular SEMrush subscription) within the SEMrush marketing suite. Traffic Analytics is a competitive research tool that provides estimations of any website’s desktop and mobile traffic. If you’re an SEMrush user, be sure to download this guide by clicking on the link below:
And if you’d like to try SEMrush Traffic Analytics for free, sign up for a one-week trial of SEMrush Pro + Traffic Analytics and see if it meets your needs.
This trial will give you access to all the features available with a regular SEMrush PRO subscription, plus additional access to all the tools within Traffic Analytics.
I also launched a new series on my podcast called the “Startup Culture Series” — which will be co-hosted by my wife and I and we’ll focus on case studies and share our views on startup best practices. You can find information on all these and more below:
New and Updated Blog Posts
Here are all the new and updated blog posts in June:
- Why is Link Building Expensive? (And Why You Should Still Do It) – In this post, guest contributor Dario Supan, content strategist and editor at Point Visible, argues why link building is crucial to your website growth despite the whole process being expensive.
I’m a huge believer in the concept of evergreen content. Hence, I keep revisiting my old posts in order to add new information and fix any existing loopholes. To that end, here are all the articles that were updated in June.
- SEMrush vs Moz: Which is the Best SEO Tool? — This is one of the oldest articles on my blog and I keep revisiting it from time to time to make a few tweaks here and there.
- 40 Infographic Submission Sites to Promote Your Infographic (and Get Backlinks) — A few of the infographic submission sites on this list no longer exist. As such, I had to replace them with sites that are still accepting infographics and are doing so in an efficient manner.
One of the first tasks I assigned to my Design Pickle graphic designer was to design a new podcast cover image for Marketing Mantra. I now present to you my new podcast cover:
I like this one better than the previous one which more or less used a Snapchat Bitmoji.
There were a total of four episodes published this month. We had two special guests — Lucas Lee-Tyson from Growth Caves, who shared tips to grow your email list through Facebook ads, and Vlad Calus, co-founder of Planable, shared insights on how to audit your marketing team’s productivity.
In this episode, I share my thoughts on Apple’s decision to shut down iTunes and break it down into 3 standalone apps — Apple Music, Apple Podcasts, and Apple TV. Find out why Apple decided to pull the plug on one of its most iconic brands.
In this new series, I’ll be joined by my co-host, Raksha Shenoy (my wife 😀) who has over a decade of experience in the HR space. She has worked with, and advised, interesting growth-stage startups and is passionate about the growth culture in startups.
In this episode, we talk about the unique work culture of Zappos. In particular, we’ll examine their practice of paying $2000 to new hires to quit and see if it’s a good tactic to retain the best hires.
To learn more about the Zappos culture, we highly recommend you grab a copy of Delivering Happiness by Tony Hsieh, CEO of Zappos.
When it comes to advertising on social media, most marketers prefer Facebook ads as their platform of choice. Serving over 1 billion users every month, bloggers and business owners alike can achieve phenomenal growth by investing in Facebook ads. But did you know you could also use Facebook ads to grow your email list? That’s the topic I’ll be discussing with my special guest for this episode, Lucas Lee-Tyson.
Lucas is a Facebook ads consultant and serial entrepreneur. He is the founder of Growth Cave, a place where marketers and entrepreneurs alike can learn how to create and manage their own profitable Facebook ad campaigns.
In this episode, I’ll be joined by Vlad Calus, co-founder of Planable — an incredible tool that I recommend — and he’ll talk about auditing your marketing team’s productivity and upgrading their results. He will also share his experience on how to succeed as an online entrepreneur, find your first customers, building your own marketing team from scratch, and outsourcing time-consuming tasks that value less.
If you’ve never heard of Planable, here’s a brief introduction: Planable is a social media collaboration tool for marketing teams, digital agencies and freelancers. With Planable, you can collaborate with your teammates and clients on content calendar in the most visual way. It’s used by more than 5000 brands worldwide, including Mini, BMW, Volkswagen, and SkyTeam.
You can also listen to the podcast within the free 99signals mobile app. Download it now on your iOS or Android device and access all our articles, podcast, and videos on-the-go:
Just one video uploaded on the 99signals YouTube channel last month. An AppSumo deal review and walkthrough of Clearout, an email marketing tool that allows you to remove invalid emails, catch-all emails, and duplicate emails from your list to reduce your bounce rate, protect your sender reputation, and overall cost.
FYI: The Clearout deal is still live at AppSumo. Click here to lear more
2019 Goodreads Reading Challenge
Like last year, I’ve taken up a Goodreads reading challenge in 2019 and the challenge is once again the same — to finish reading 100 books by the end of 2019; 25 of which to be business books.
In June, I read two business books:
I really enjoyed Duhigg’s last book, The Power of Habit, so I picked up Smarter Faster Better after reading rave reviews about it online. In Smarter Faster Better, Duhigg explores the science of productivity and explains why some individuals and companies are so much better than others at the things they do. The book contains numerous examples and draws heavily on the latest findings in neuroscience and psychology, and if you are seeking ways to be more productive, I highly recommend this book.
Cal Newport is another author whose work I thoroughly enjoy. Deep Work was a fascinating read and So Good They Can’t Ignore You is even better. In the book, Newport argues that when it comes to creating work you love, following your passion is not particularly useful advice. Drawing from real-life examples and cutting-edge science, he details the alternative strategies that work much better for developing a compelling career.
(Side note: Both these books have been added to my list of favorite books for entrepreneurs. Be sure to check out this exhaustive list if you’re an avid book reader.)
Quotes I’m Pondering (June 1 – 30, 2019)
Inspired by Tim Ferriss’ Tribe of Mentors, you’ll find thought-provoking quotes in all my income reports.
These are the quotes that inspired me and changed my thinking in June. I hope you find them just as insightful as I did:
“Difficulties strengthen the mind, as labor does the body.” — Seneca (Roman Stoic philosopher)
“The only thing that I see that is distinctly different about me is I’m not afraid to die on a treadmill. I will not be out-worked, period. You might have more talent than me, you might be smarter than me, you might be sexier than me, you might be all of those things you got it on me in nine categories. But if we get on the treadmill together, there’s two things: You’re getting off first, or I’m going to die.” — Will Smith (American actor, rapper, and media personality)
June 2019 Income Report
Now let’s take a look at my earnings in June. As always, this report consists of my affiliate earnings, followed by other income, expenses, and net profit breakdown.
- SEMrush – $2,685.67 (review / eBook)
- AppSumo – $525.84 (latest deals)
- AppSumo Briefcase – $101.53 (review)
- SendinBlue – $1,123.35 (review)
- Serpstat – $12.27(review)
- ConvertKit – $34.8 (review)
- KWFinder – $12 (review)
- Instapage – $62.4 (review)
- Shorby – $18 (review)
- Amazon Affiliate Program – $101.3
Total Affiliate Earnings: $4,677.16
- Sponsored posts – $450 (click here for more details)
Total Side Income Earnings: $5,127.16
- Mailchimp (Recurring) – $50 (review)
- AppSumo Briefcase (Recurring) – $49 (review)
- Design Pickle (Recurring) – $299 — 1st month 25% discount
- Google Ads – $107.28
- Facebook Ads – $75.95
- Ahrefs (Recurring) – $99 (review)
- Buffer Pro (Recurring) – $15
- Alexa (Recurring) – $19.99
- Buildfire (Recurring) – $59
- TubeBuddy (Recurring) – $4.50
- SoundCloud Pro (Recurring) – $8
- Audio-Technica ATR2100 USB Microphone – $101.67
- Wright WR 35 Microphone Stand – $5.80
Total expenses: $913.7
Net Profit Breakdown
- Affiliate earnings: $4,677.16
- Other income: $450
- Total expenses: (-$913.7)
- Net Profit: $4,213.46
That wraps up the income report for June 2019.
If you have any questions about this month’s income report, feel free to ask them in the comments section or connect with me via Twitter.
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