015 | Yaro Starak | Entrepreneurs Journey
Since 2005 through his blog Entrepreneurs-Journey.com, his email newsletter and his excellent training programs in the EJ Insider, Yaro Starak has successfully taught thousands of people how to make a full time income from blogging part time, how to buy and sell blogs and websites, and how to successfully launch an information product business.
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Nicola: Hi, I’m Nicola Cairncross, and you’re listening to “The Money Gym” podcast, where I interview successful entrepreneurs and investors, and ask them, if they could go back in time, and give their younger selves one big tip about money, what would it be? I really hope you enjoy the show.
Yaro Starak of entrepreneurs journey is one of the better known bloggers in the world. Since 2005 through his blog Entrepreneurs-Journey.com, his email newsletter and his excellent training programs in the EJ Insider, Yaro Starak has successfully taught thousands of people how to make a full time income from blogging part time, how to buy and sell blogs and websites, and how to successfully launch an information product business.
In 2008, he packed up his laptop got on a plane and traveled around the world, stopping in 23 cities in eight months. He started in Fiji then went to Hawaii, Vancouver, Toronto, Las Vegas, Chicago, New York, Winnipeg to visit his grandmother, Montreal, Quebec, Glasgow, Edinburgh, London, Brussels, Amsterdam, Paris, Rome, Florence, Venice, Naples, Athens, Dubai, Singapore, and then back home to Australia.
He also is a prolific property investor owning properties in Australia, Vancouver, and the Ukraine.
He says, “As you can see, if you set up the right kind of internet business, you gain financial freedom and time freedom, which is something most people only dream about, especially if you currently have a day job that you despise”. Of course it wasn’t always like this for me and it has taken a long time to bring together the necessary ingredients to live this sort of lifestyle.
Let’s hear what Yarak has to say on the topic of money shall we. So let’s talk Yaro, you made your first 13 grand which probably was a year’s salary for some people at the by selling your “Magic: the Gathering” website, and then better read it started doing quite well and I know that you have got a property somewhere but you’re moving around a lot at the moment. What’s going on with that?
Yaro: Well, I’m back in Brisbane right now, I’m just want to get through some traveling again like I haven’t gone overseas now and for six years, I think so I traveled around the world in 2008. But it’s once I’ve actually just relaunched my courses that this is what I’m doing. I’m going to start doing Airbnb and head to the states and I want to attend some events. But anyway, you’re asking a different question. We’re not talking about travel and property.
Nicola: Well lets talk us through your sort of money. Do you did you come from a comfortable background or a background of entrepreneurs? Or did your parents or typical employees, how did with your money attitudes come from and how have they have they changed over the years?
Yaro: We weren’t middle class for sure. And that is, you never wanted for anything, we never were rich. My mother was more entrepreneurial in the sense that she never held down a job for longer than five years. She kept moving from from thing to thing and there was some long blocks of periods where she pay for the bills by having a stall and local market where she sold arts and crafts, for example.
So I certainly, entrepreneurial, but I from me, my mother showed me that you didn’t have to have a job. But she also showed me that there was no leverage in what she did, whether it was because she was afraid to grow it to a certain size, or she I think for her, and this is what I was going back to those three points are really important.
A lot of the time she was doing these businesses about because they need money, but they didn’t actually meet her other needs. They may be a little bit of creative output, but it really wasn’t much she wanted to do and they certainly weren’t making enough money for her to be significantly financially secure.
So it was more of a need type of business and taught me that I’d show me I don’t want to go have a business that requires me to get up at 3 am in the morning to head to a market on a weekend. That’s what she was doing for a long time and that showed me that. So and then my father, he’s been a university professor. Well while he’s retired now, but when he was working, and he also so had a business on the side, which was I think more of his interest.
He had a Gestalt therapy, workshops, training then my whole family’s full of therapists and counselors and psychologists. He’s been in that area, he taught social work in university as a professor, but he’s a lot more mainstream, but he’s never really want have his own business. He loves like, he makes a great speaker. He’s the kind of person who you set up the event, I’ll show it show up and talk and get paid to be the expert.
He doesn’t want to organize, doesn’t want to create a foundation of people, he just wants to do the teaching and do the performing. He really is a performer. So that those are two examples? I don’t think I had any true role models in my family in regards to what I did. How could you because the internet came along. I know, the business was always there.
But the internet really changed the dynamic about how you do business and I was timing for me, I happened to be growing up at the same time the internet grew up and that was helpful in a lot of ways. So to answer your question with money, I just knew I wanted some form of income that wasn’t doing things I didn’t want to do. That to me I didn’t have necessarily multimillion dollar dreams. It was I have to make enough to live off. I ideally have fairly near passive income streams. That was my initial thinking.
Nicola: In NLP terms, you’re in a way from person rather than a towards kind of person.
Yaro: I think initially I was, so I definitely was trying to avoid pain.What happened though, is as I went down this path I my eyes open to how people actually do get rich, like you don’t really understand it. Initially, you sort of see rich people and you don’t know what they’re doing. That’s why those books were so helpful.
Yaro: Because you just see, okay, they sell this thing. This is how they reached all these customers. They’re all these customers bought it that made a lot of money. It’s not that difficult to think about what was really important was understanding business models.
For me, was an absolute eye opener, because I really saw that certain business models lend themselves to significant amounts of money reasonably easier compared to other business models, which can be worse than a job that require more hours, and don’t make much money at the end of the day.
Yaro: So, that’s the difference between owning your local coffee shop versus owning the franchise of 50 coffee shops. It’s the very different types of business models there and I could see, do I want to be the one serving the coffee? No, but I want to be the one collecting the profits from all the different coffee shops that sounded more appealing.
So, that’s the sort of things I started looking at, as I became more aware, and I started to meet rich people. That was the other thing too, thanks to my blogging. A lot of the people we’ve mentioned on this call, Rich Schefren and then there was also Michael Sane and Jeff Walker, those these people who were multi millionaire internet marketers, and actually, one of the best business models I discovered even better than blogging, was email marketing, because of these guys.
I remember, Terry Dean was the probably the first person who I heard a story of writing an email, he wrote this one email, and he made $96,000 in commissions as a result of one email to his email list.
Nicola: Because you didn’t like building an email list at the beginning, are you still a bit later?
Yaro: My second year of blogging was when I started my email list. So I was definitely late to the game, I was still way ahead of the curve for bloggers, bloggers, were no one was doing email list or blogging, it was all about RSS feeds then. But I did. Eventually, I took maybe 10 people or 10, you know, training materials telling me start list that actually did when I started to make like my income went to six figures.
Yaro: It wasn’t for the list, avail product, I wouldn’t have broken the six figures mark, and then go on to make half a million a year, a couple years in a row with my business as well. That’s because I sold my own products and have an email list that could reach people, I could do direct response marketing. I learned more about copywriting and more importantly, I had access to people through this mechanism called email, which is still today, the most powerful tools.
So I think what happened is my ambition grew as my knowledge grew, when it came to money. Once you break 100,000 a year, you gain some trade it was then, that really is more than enough to cover your bases, especially as a single person, and which I was for all that time.
So when you’re doing $10,000 a month, you might have $2,000 as expenses, but I had those $8,000 in liquid cash every month for me. I do the first couple of years of blogging after I started to figure it out and then, once you make half a million a year, blogging has got a pretty good profit margin, I was keeping about 70% of that money in the bank.
Nicola: Taxes become an issue.
Yaro: Well, that was where the 30% went, right. So, but still, that when property just became whereas people you money when you put into property, because it’s what everyone does. So, I don’t agree with that now, but that’s what I did then. It definitely has shifted and still shifted, like when you see what guys are doing today, John Lee Dumas is a good example.
Nicola: Unbelievable, So I mean, six figures, three, $250,000 a month income, that’s, I gotta tell you that’s what jolted me into action on my podcast again, hearing that story,
When you see that it’s just basically he’s buying traffic using email marketing and using the webinar to convert customers, of course, he’s got a great product, and he’s built himself some solid credit, ability and trust, but that’s the sales funnel is built, and we all have access to that potential through the internet.
It’s just tweaking each part of the process, the opt in the conversion, the webinar presentation, the quality product, and having something worthwhile to teach, that’s obviously an important component to that people actually want.
Yaro: So you can see it and that’s what happens when you start studying this stuff, your eyes open to the business models that people are using to make a lot of money.
Then you start thinking, well, I can do that and that’s pretty much what happened throughout my entire career, especially when it became open to the world direct response email marketing that really was an eye opener and I never haven’t quite reached the John Lee Dumas level.
I do remember after with Terry Dean with his email marketing, and then Jeff Walker with the Product Launch Formula, and then Evan Pagan and Rich Schefren and shortly after that, all those guys were basically using emails and there was all these launches happening and then I started doing affiliate promotions to and even give you take away my own products. I remember promoting pretty much every two or three months a launch and every time making between 10 and $25,000 in affiliate commissions,
Nicola: Because you build the the trust with your readership.
Yaro: Build the trust and a quality launch process from these guys that I was promoting, great information, great products, right target audience. I love their products too. I Product Launch Formula. I’ve gone through Evan Pagan stuff. I just love it Rich Schefren’s the business growth system, I really love that too. It’s my passion, I love internet marketing.
So I really enjoy all the products as well. Then when you get good at writing and telling these stories like we talked about, that’s what you do you like Andre does like you’re like following him you write these emails, tell these stories you educate and help people and recommend products and then when you get a $500 to $1,000 commission per sale and you can sell 10 copies you making $10,000. So, It’s just a few emails.
Nicola: As an add on on top of your own income because I know that you’ve got your read going through your products. I know you’ve got an EJ insider program now, which I’m a member of, of course signed up straight away as soon as you launched it. So that’s that’s another thing isn’t it is having recurring income is is a real backbone of an internet marketers money strategy.
Yaro: I’ve really been fleshing out the whole blog sales funnel, as I call it, and I’m starting to see the layers come together with what works really well right now. The way I mean, this is not new in some regards, but I’m sort of applying it to blogging as well. What seems to be a great structure with this two ways I see people do this, you’ve got the I just have one flagship product.
Often that’s a higher end products, $2,000 to $2,000 course or something like that and often you’ll find an expert just come out and do a webinar, promote the course. It’s the Lewis house models of net webinar marketing of which I think John Lee Dumas, certainly followed from.
Nicola: Paradise like that.
Yaro: That’s what John sorry, what Lewis house pioneered several years ago, when he was really getting into webinar marketing with his friend, Sean. They were doing similar things, but often with affiliate marketing. So there’s that and that works great, especially if you’re confident in your market, and you’ve got this great product, or you can create it.
I’ve wanted to really have a lot of niche products as well as the flagship stuff. So I’ve sort of reverse engineered it. I’ve seen the structure, you’ve got the the front end products, which has always been the case for for a sales funnel, you’ve got low price, front end products that are designed to introduce people to your paid products over delivering value, you create a customer, it’s always hardest to get a customer.
It’s obviously going to be easier to sell a $30 ebook than $1,000 course you’re going to get more customers. But then after that, you’ve got the opportunities for bundling and up selling.
So the way I’m looking at it, now it’s sub $50 products is upsell so $50 or less and then as part of the checkout process for those products, you’re offering your tier one continuity or membership or subscription, as you mentioned earlier, and that is helps to turn a $30 purchase into 100 to $200 purchase paid out over monthly subscriptions.
Then you’ve got whatever next level of training you offer, which might be that thousand dollar course of which that will also then be a higher end subscription program, which might be more like a coaching program like we’re doing with DJ Insider, bit more time spent with one coach. Then of course, you’ve got your live events and your your year long, high end coaching and things like that.
So there’s, that’s a like a funnel that I find, at the moment for me is what I’m really focused on. I’m enjoying it because what I love about it, it gives me a resource to send people to regardless of what they asked me, it’s like someone says, have no idea what to get into, like what subject to get into, I say, we’re going to worry about that. Go buy a blocks, and then here’s my free email course of buying and selling websites, which leads to my guide on buying and selling blogs and websites.
That’s one answer there and then someone says, Well, I’ve got a traffic but here’s the traffic free course and the traffic product. Someone else said, Well, I really just want to ask you a bunch of questions. Well, here’s my coaching program, here’s my my private consulting fee, you’ve got an answer to every person and that’s more tailored, which allows you to get a higher conversion rate to get a higher number of customers, which over the lifetime of their relationship with you means you will make more money and because they’re going to be more involved with what you do.
I think it’s just really satisfying because as a content creator, there’s so much in my head, even want to have in the world. It’s like an author who’s got 10 books in them and they haven’t had a chance to get it out there. That’s how I felt two years ago, I just had no all my products have been taken offline. I was like really, I know so much about buying and selling websites because I just spent two or three years just doing that as a passive income strategy.
I know so much know a blogging and I know so much about setting up digital products for sale and I’m learning so much now about product funnels and all this stuff I want to have out there but you have to get good at rapid product creation, get good at your pricing structures, your conversion, your technology for delivering all these products and taking the money there’s a lot to it. So that’s what I’ve been working on for the last two years now. I’m really full but ever since I started selling products, which is back in 2007.
Nicola: You’ve been listening to Nicola Cairncross on “The Money Gym” podcast. If you’d like to find out more about The Money Gym and how we can help you become more financially intelligent, just come on over to themoneygym.com. We’ll see you over there.
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