Secrets of a $300k month with Steph Taylor
In this episode, I talk with Steph Taylor and find out her strategies to achieving a $300k month. We dive in deep, discussing everything from money, to having an abundance mindset and the lessons Steph learnt along the way.
In this Episode:
- 1.29: Hitting a $300k revenue target in one month
- 3.55: The nitty gritty
- 7.49: The lessons from behind the scenes
- 12.37: The mindset to succeed
Steph is an ex-corporate square peg who has found her home outside of the round hole in educating and guiding online entrepreneurs in the art of intentional (and fun!) launches so they can achieve more impact, create more profit and foster more freedom in their business.
Through her signature framework, Steph helps brands launch and relaunch their offerings to reach more people, grow their audience and become the go-to geniuses in their industry.
You’re listening to the Clare Wood podcast, where we talk all things business, finance, marketing, and mindset for entrepreneurs, sharing practical tips, and actionable advice to help you take your business to the next level. Introducing your host: me! I’m Clare Wood, I’m a numbers geek, a travel lover, and a reality tv addict, and I’m here to empower you to create an extraordinary business and an amazing life, because I believe you don’t have to choose between the two. Now let’s dive right in to today’s episode.
Secrets of a $300k month with Steph Taylor
CLARE: We’re recording. Hi Steph Taylor.
STEPH: Hey Clare Wood, this is fun!
CLARE: This is weird being here. You know, like in my apartment without a glass of wine in our hands.
STEPH: I was just thinking the same thing. What are we going to talk to each other about?
CLARE: Well, let’s find out. I’m sure our listeners are going to enjoy hearing this. Well, I’ve got a topic in mind and I’m super excited to delve into it because the last month something pretty amazing’s happened inside your business and I would love to share this story about how you’ve come to achieve the results that you have and then maybe a little bit of the backstory behind it as well. So before we get into that though for anyone who doesn’t know you would you like to do a quick introduction to yourself?
STEPH: Yeah, sure. I’m Steph Taylor. I am a digital product launch strategist and I also help people to launch podcasts. I have a podcast of my own called Socialette. It’s a bite-sized online marketing podcast. And that’s the little elevator pitch really!
CLARE: Well, it’s lovely to have you on my podcast for the second time. I’ve never had anyone on the podcast twice.
STEPH: I’m honoured!
CLARE: Steph and I actually both are from Brisbane. We both live in the same hometown. So it’s so nice to record a podcast in person, I have to say. And it’s lovely to have you on again. Now, the reason I wanted to chat today is as I mentioned, something pretty amazing is happening in your business in the last month, which is that you’ve hit a $300,000 revenue month in your business last month.
Hitting a $300k revenue target in one month
STEPH: Wow. Yeah, that was my entire revenue goal for the whole of 2020 was $300,000 and it happened in a window of a month.
CLARE: And this is why I wanted to bring you on to share a little bit about this story because for me it is so inspiring and it’s so inspiring what we look at, what that would look like to project that 12 month period. And I’d love to talk a little bit about firstly how you achieved it and then a little bit about some of the things that went in behind the scenes.
So tell us about this revenue target that you’ve achieved. How did you actually hit 300K in one month?
STEPH: So the funny thing is this came all off the back of one single $197 product.
STEPH: This is what blows my mind because I always had this mindset where it was like, you need to have 10 different kinds of products you need to have a $20,000 course. And I’ve managed to hit that goal. I managed to hit the entire year’s goal in one month off a $197 product, which blows my mind. And I’m sure we’ll delve a little bit into the specifics of how exactly I met that. But yeah, one product. No clients.
CLARE: This is really challenging the thinking around the way that we’re taught to build up our business. It has to be a whole suite of products. So let’s get a little bit more into it. So firstly, what is the product?
STEPH: Yeah, so it’s my A to Z podcast launch plan. It’s not an online course. It’s literally step by step how to launch a podcast. So I mean there’s so many other online courses out there teaching you how to launch a podcast. They’re all at a higher price point. So I thought, you know, like $197, it’s pretty affordable for most people. And it’s just what you need to do when to launch your podcast. It’s not videos, it’s none of the extra fluffy stuff that you don’t have time for. Right. It’s not the theory, it’s not the nice to have, it’s just like, you know, have you got the domain name for your website, have you registered the Instagram handle? Like it’s all of the checklist steps.
CLARE: Yeah. Amazing. And so how on earth did you possibly get this $197 product to such a large audience? Because you’ve obviously got already got a quite an established following. You’ve got quite an established email list. But the amazing thing about this launch is that you actually did it to cold audiences.
The nitty gritty
STEPH: Yeah, and I suppose the caveat here should be that yes, it was a $300,000 in revenue, but there was also $150,000 in Facebook ad spend behind that. Which if that sounds like a scary number to you, that that’s a scary number to me as well. Like I was slowly sitting there scaling up the Facebook ad spend every day thinking, Oh my God, like this is a lot of money. Like $5,000 a day is a lot of money on Facebook ads. But you know, it paid off in the end. But the thing is, right, so I have launched this thing live probably five times now. So I know that the funnel works really well. I’m not just blindly pouring money into this, into ads hoping that it’s going to convert because I already know predictably people, like this funnel works, the messaging works, the webinar works, the emails work. So going off like past numbers, I know if I put in, you know, $5,000 a day, it’s predictable, predictably going to generate about 10,000 in revenue.
CLARE: So what happened differently this month? Why have you sort of not been scaling up in earlier months? If you’ve got this amazing, it’s bringing in this what literally is a passive income stream?
STEPH: Yeah, well it’s because of the, I wanted to make sure everything was right. I didn’t want to rush in and throw lots of money into ads and then find out, you know, that it wasn’t converting and suddenly I’ve wasted all this money. And I think that’s where a lot of people go wrong. They kind of think like Facebook ads is going to be the solution to getting them all of these sales, but if something else is broken, you can throw lots of money at ads and you’re not going to actually create any revenue or you’re not going to get a positive return on your investment in ads. So I guess like the product, I only originally launched the product in November last year. And then I wanted to do a couple more live launches before I started automating it. And the whole process has just been, you know, like testing things, tweaking things, finding out, okay, like this this email sequence converts better than that email sequence. This webinar sales pitch converts better than that webinar sales pitch. So it’s not really something that you could rush it. I think it’s actually happened quicker than I was expecting it to, to be completely honest.
CLARE: Yeah. Amazing. So let’s skip back a few steps because something that you spoke about before, and obviously this is my big passion for it. Everyone who listens to the podcast knows that I’m a really big believer. Often in business, especially in small business people always headline with the, I hit $300,000 sales people always talk about six figures or seven figures. And I loved it straight away. You actually shared, well that’s not a profit number and that you did obviously have a significant investment that’s at behind it. Were there any other expenses that you incurred in the process of creating the product from end to end?
STEPH: Other than copywriter and my VA’s time setting up the, actually no, my VA didn’t even set up a sales page. My web designer did that. And then my VA’s time doing customer support. Those are really the only other expenses.
CLARE: Yeah, amazing.
STEPH: And software, obviously all of the apps that, that does get really expensive. So for example, I use Zapier to connect my webinar platform with my email platforms that everyone who registered for this webinar goes through a zap that connects the two and then they end up on my email list. And because I have so many people going through this funnel now I’m paying about $1500 US a month just for this one piece of software.
STEPH: It gets expensive very quickly.
CLARE: Yeah. And you know, not to forget all of the investment that you’ve made into your business, all of the training, all of the coaches that you’ve worked with…
STEPH: The tears, the blood, the sweat.
CLARE: The why…
The lessons from behind the scenes
CLARE: Which is what I want to do next. So obviously we’re headlining with this amazing success story and it is an amazing success story. But behind the success, there’s always heartache. And there’s, you know, you mentioned that this is actually the fifth time that you’ve gone through and launch this product. And I know that your business over the years has, has pivoted. You’ve launched a couple of different things at different times. So I’d love for you to share a little bit about maybe the things in the lead up to this, all of the lessons along the way that have helped to contribute to the success of this month.
STEPH: I love this, and it’s actually so funny because I think the last time I was on your podcast, I was talking about like email marketing and probably marketing strategy. So I’ve, yeah, I’ve pivoted since then and that was maybe only a year ago. So I guess, yeah, the, the big pivots and the big lessons.
My first big pivot was running out of money in my first little business, which was an eCommerce business. Do not recommend quitting your corporate job when you don’t have three months’ worth of expenses saved up. Just a pro tip there. I had to learn that lesson the hard way.
Then the next thing was I, so I was working at a start-up doing their marketing and I started doing client marketing myself and the brand wild bloom and eventually, like I hired a few other people. It ended up being me and three others doing client work and I was traveling a lot and not enjoying, you know, like different times zones and yeah, client calls at 2:00 AM all of that. That wasn’t fun. So I guess the big lesson there was, actually, let me take that a step back.
So I actually then went and saw a business coach and we did a strategy session and I said to her, I said, you know, like I don’t want, I don’t know if I want to do this client work anymore. And she gave me permission to fire all my clients, which was all I really needed. So I think sometimes I think, I guess the big learning there is you don’t always need somebody else to give you permission before you take action on that.
I guess like now then, Oh, then I started, you know, being the generalist marketer with the podcast teaching people, you know, our marketing strategy, how to get more Instagram followers cause everyone really wants to know how to get more Instagram followers!
Let me tell you guys, the answer is Facebook ads.
But anyway, so yeah, like then I kind of, yeah, I was the one person who was known for everything but nothing and I found it really hard, like around that time when I last came on your podcast, it was such an uphill battle selling anything to anyone because yes, I had an Instagram marketing course but I wasn’t the Instagram expert. Yes, I had a Facebook ads course but I wasn’t the Facebook ads expert. And while like I was selling a few of these things, it wasn’t really scaling up. So then once I niched down into launch marketing, that’s kind of when everything started to take off. It’s like once I became known for my thing and it was so, it was so glaringly obvious that launch marketing was my thing and launch strategy was my thing because I was just addicted to launching online courses.
Like I had five online courses at one point and I just loved launching them. So I guess to answer your original question, what was the question?
CLARE: We were just talking about how behind the gloss of the numbers and maybe some people feel a little bit almost triggered when someone, you know, hits an amazing revenue goal or profit goal or we see other people you know, in our industry achieving amazing things and it can make you feel pretty damn crap sometimes, can’t it?
STEPH: Yeah. And I mean that’s the thing, right? So I feel like whenever I post anything about like numbers on Instagram or talk about on my podcast, I always feel a little bit like, oh, is this going to trigger somebody? And like the thing is, I’m not putting it there to make anyone feel inferior. I’m not putting it there to like, encourage you to compare yourself or to make you feel like, oh, why am I not here yet?
It’s more as motivation for people like you, Claire, but also you’ve got to realize like, this has taken me four years to get to this point. So yes, while the product only been around for, you know, what’s it now like May, so six, seven months. It’s been four years of a lot of other things that have led to this moment. And I think if I had launched this product on day one of my business journey and I was now only seven months into my business journey, I would be even less equipped to deal with it than I was or than I am now. Yeah.
The mindset to succeed
CLARE: Yeah. Okay. So many amazing things. There’s just, so firstly, let’s talk a little bit about the money mindset side because to your point, a lot of people do get triggered by numbers and I know that a lot of women especially get really funny talking about them, but a lot of people also get really inspired.
And I know that so many people who hear this episode will be so inspired by what you’ve achieved and for me, when something happens or you know someone’s achieving something that I’m not quite there yet, for me the big thing that goes on is what are they doing?
CLARE: How can I learn from them? How can I tap into that and obviously not replicate it as well. I think that’s something that people might think or I’m going to come up with a podcast launch plan. You’re missing the point, Like you need to come up with what is going to resonate well, you know what works for you and what your area of passion and area of expertise is and then go on your own journey of working out, okay, what sequence is going to work, what product, how you help people solve that product is going to work for you. So it’s like learning the lessons from someone who is there.
STEPH: Yeah, but I think also where you differ and like you have an abundance mindset. You’ve spent a lot of time, you’ve invested a lot of money into learning, you know about money mindset from amazing, like people like Denise Duffield-Thomas, right. And you’ve got that abundance mindset. You know, like just because I’m hitting my revenue goals doesn’t mean there’s any less money out there for you. It doesn’t mean that you know, like people aren’t going to have money to work with you. Whereas I think a lot of people who find it triggering potentially worried that because somebody else is finding success, it means there’s less success for them out there.
STEPH: Is that your experience with your clients?
CLARE: Yeah, and I actually did an episode about this because I know that I definitely used to feel like that with competitors. And do you know someone launched a program the same time as me and I’d be like, people are signing up for my program and not my program and actually I started going, hang on. If they do an online course and have a great experience, what’s that going to do? It means that they’re probably going to want to do another online course and I’m like, gosh I hope that she delivers a really amazing, they get some fantastic results working with her because if that’s their experience they might be willing to do that again. Yeah. And I definitely believe that there is plenty of business out there for everyone and I don’t think that anyone else’s success means that it’s any less for you. If it does, if you are feeling a little bit triggered by talking about numbers, I would say that maybe that’s a time to go and do some work on yourself.
And I can tell you, I can’t tell you how chalk and cheese from what I was a couple of years ago, but it’s been a journey and it’s definitely been something that I’ve done a lot of work on. And I know that a lot of people in the, in the business space who feel the same have had to come on that journey as well themselves.
STEPH: It’s an ongoing journey as well. I mean, I think, I think back to this time last year and I’ve definitely come leaps and bounds since then in terms of money mindset.
STEPH: But there’s still moments where I feel like, Oh, like I could stop making sales tomorrow and then like maybe I can’t invest in this thing because what if the money stops coming in? And that’s the scarcity mindset, right?. And I think the biggest thing for me was realizing you can still have an abundance mindset, even if you’ve got, you know, 10 cents in the bank, like in the last year, there’s been points where I’ve had no money at all and it’s still, you can still have that abundance mindset. You can still trust that the money is coming to you. You just don’t know when.
CLARE: Yeah. And even people that I know that multi multimillion is definitely still struggle with, “Oh I can’t do that”. And I’m like, what do you mean? You’ve got so much money, you can do whatever you want! So you’re totally right. It sounds crazy to say. And people might be thinking that listening to you go, well what’s right for you Steph cause you make $300,000 worth of revenue last month. But that’s not the point. And I’ve seen this so much. I had a client of mine turn over a million dollars a year and literally she wasn’t, and not even pretending, she genuinely was like, “I have no money”.
And this is something that people battle with. No matter what turnover you’re making, no matter how much profits in your business, it’s exactly to your point. It’s about how you think about it. And that’s what money mindset is right?
STEPH: Oh a hundred percent. And I think like so much of it comes from our parents, right. And it’s quite funny because like I recently bought a new office chair, the one that I’m sitting on right now, it’s quite a fancy comfy chair because my remedial massage therapist told me I was getting a bit of a hunchback. So I was like, okay, let’s get a new chair.
Anyway. so when I ordered it from Officeworks, I could pay an extra $50 and get somebody to assemble it for me. So obviously I did that and I was chatting to my dad and I told him, I said, I paid $50 to get somebody else to assemble it. And he’s like, I can’t believe you did that. That’s so much money. I was like, but dad, it would take me three hours if I would have figured it out myself. My time is worth more than $15 an hour. You know?
It’s such a different way of thinking.
And I mean that’s like, it’s crazy. Cause I would have grown up with that kind of mindset around me. Yeah. And it’s just been a whole series of consciously shifting that since then.
CLARE: But you’ve been really doing the work and I’ve seen the people that you’re working with and the programs that you’re joining and the master minds that you’re part of. And that’s where you start to transform that thinking. Right. And it doesn’t mean, when I say transform, it doesn’t mean that you don’t have moments. I definitely, trust me, have moments of scarcity and doubt and fear and all of those things as well. But overall I feel like I’m in such a different space around it. Okay, cool. So we’ve spoken a little bit about how you firstly, revenue does not equal profit. And I’m so grateful that you shared that so openly. It’s something I bang on about all the time.
STEPH: It’s so funny like in the online space is like the joke about the person who had the seven figure launch but spent $999,000 in ads to make the million dollars. I definitely know Denise shared with me that she knows someone that just, you know, massively ramped up the ad spend because they really wanted to have a million dollar launch and be able to share that story. And yeah, at the end of the day, it doesn’t matter what your sales number is, right? That is what your profit number is because that’s how much money you have in the bank account at the end of the day. Right?
Exactly. And you know what, like I would rather spend $9,000 in ads and have a $10,000 launch then spend, you know, 999,000 have a million dollar launch. Because if you’ve got that million dollar launch, you have a lot more customer service to do. You’re paying way more for your email marketing platform, your, all of your different apps, everything. So yeah, it’s not like it’s not worth scaling up something that’s broken. Definitely.
CLARE: Okay. I love it. So let’s talk a little bit about what next, because if you’ve been able to achieve in a completely passive way, those kinds of results in a month, does this mean that this can ramp up and up and up and in theory you could scale up and up from here for the rest of the year?
STEPH: Yes and no. It does. So you ads do tend to get more expensive the more you scale it up because Facebook shows your ads to the people who are going to convert cheapest first and then it starts to show them some more expensive people.
Also when you’re spending 10 grand on ads a day as I am currently, your ads get seen by the same people a lot and they start to fatigue. So that’s when you have to switch them up. I’m like, I recently invested in a video shoot with Kate and her team at The Latest, so I’m excited to get those ads up and running and that like might give it a bit of a fresh kind of a new lease of life basically. But I definitely have noticed like the growth was really sharp at first and now it’s kind of plateaued a little bit and I’m scared to scale it up anymore at the moment. It’s kind of funny, cause I’m actually like, in the space of fear at the moment. Like, I don’t know what to do, so I just do nothing.
CLARE: Hm. Interesting. And that’s again, this money mindset coming into play, isn’t it? It’s like, even though we know how hard you’ve worked, how much content you’ve created, how much lessons you’ve learned over the years, when you achieve what you’re chasing, sometimes you get this sense of almost unworthiness.
STEPH: It is unworthiness. Yeah. A hundred percent.
CLARE: And that fear about what if this doesn’t keep on going?
STEPH: Yeah. Oh, it’s the literally the last two months has been me waiting for the other shoe to drop and it’s not been comfortable. It’s been, I’ve, like, I’ve literally spent, I think I’ve spent more time working on my mindset in the last two months than I have actually spent working on my business. But the way that I’m looking at it, I’m like, okay, so you know, the universe has given me this product that’s bringing all of this money in that allows me to actually, you know, I can still make money while I’m not at my desk. So if I’m not going to use this, if I’m too overwhelmed to work on my business right now, I’m going to work on myself instead. So it’s kinda, it’s a, it’s a fun little opportunity actually.
But also the unworthiness thing. I think a lot of us deal with that. I know a few other people who’ve had similar situations and they felt unworthy of it. And what my friend Ronsley suggested when I caught up with him the other weekend was that he said, go write out a list of everything you’ve had to overcome to get to this point. Because it’s, so, for me, it feels like it’s been really effortless as product, right? Because it’s just been, it’s been something that solves a problem for people. The messaging has been spot on. Everything’s worked really well, but the whole process hasn’t been effortless because it’s been four years of the bloody business rollercoaster.
Like there have been a lot of tears along the way. There’s been a lot of days where I haven’t been able to get out of bed. Like it’s been just, it hasn’t all been easy and effortless. So yeah, like it’s, it’s not just the short thing that it’s not just the quick process that’s made it, it makes me worthy of it or not. Yeah. It’s tough.
CLARE: And so I’d love to know, obviously myself, all of the listeners want to know, well, how did you do it? Steff? So how you teaching people the secrets behind your success?
STEPH: Sure am actually! No, actually do have a workshop, a three hour workshop that I ran live and now I’m selling the recording for it, which is teaching people how to build a digital product from scratch. And it kind of walks you through the steps that I went through.
Obviously I did work with a proper copywriter and that makes a huge difference for the sales copy. But then I still wrote the emails or myself, I did the webinar all myself pretty much everything other than the sales page was all myself. So like there is, there is an art and a science to it.
CLARE: So if people do want to get their hands on this or share it in the show notes for today’s episode at clairewood.com.au/podcast and obviously look for this episode. Or they’ll be in the link in when you download the podcast. I can’t even talk.
But I definitely think I want to go and check this out. I’m sure the listeners definitely will as well. But it’s interesting to note, and I hear this again and again and again, I’ve experienced this myself. It’s as much about your mindset as it is about the strategy, right?
STEPH: Probably more so mindset. The strategy got me to the point where I started to scale up the ads because I knew the funnel was converting. But since then, it’s all been mindset. Otherwise, like if I hadn’t been able to get past that initial fear, I still be spending $100, $500 a day on Facebook ads, maybe $1,000. I wouldn’t have had that confidence or that courage to spend more.
CLARE: Yeah. And the thing is true is it’s when we know it sounds really simplistic, when you say it like that, well of course you spend more money, but there’s no guarantees.
CLARE: I mean, just because something’s been converting a certain right up to a point in time. So it really does involve taking a leap of faith
STEPH: 100%. And especially with the way that this funnel works, right? I put $10,000 into ads, but I don’t get that in revenue until the next day or the following day. Right? So I could spend $10,000 today and nobody could convert tomorrow and I’ve lost $10,000.
CLARE: Yeah. And when you start to look at it in that kind of light, it says, wow, that’s really, it’s scary. Its massively leaning in. Right. And a lot of things in business are like that. I worked with a client of mine today and she said that when her and her husband were first talking about her working with me, she was, she’s like, we were both like, Whoa, it’s a big leap. It’s a big, it’s a big leap of faith. And yeah, it lit me up today. She said to me, my husband said to me, it’s been the best investment that you’ve ever made in your business.
STEPH: I love that.
CLARE: And it obviously when you make an investment, it doesn’t always pay off. And sometimes, you know, I’m sure all of this, I know I’ve definitely, and let’s just say it was more of a lesson then than a return, but sometimes you, you know, you buy things or invest in things and sometimes your ads come off, sometimes they don’t. I’ve definitely had experience.
STEPH: Oh yeah, me too. Me too. I mean, like I spent a lot of money on ads just to learn how to run them without making any return.
CLARE: Yeah. So what’s next for Steph Taylor then?
STEPH: Yeah, well at the moment I’m just like slowing down a bit, being a bit kinder to myself. But I guess in the next couple of months I’m working on a another product to help people to create a digital product and then I’m going to be launching my membership, which will be helping people to launch their digital products because creating your digital product and launching your digital product are two completely separate things. Everyone gets them confused, they’re not the same thing. So yeah, I’m launching that membership in July, potentially early August. I’m starting to have a little bit of a freak out where I’m like, I’m not ready for this at all because I wasn’t going to do my workshop so early on. And then coronavirus happened and everyone was like, Oh, I want to launch a digital product. And I was like, well, I’ve got the content there so I might as well just do it earlier. And then this other product that I’m launching, I wasn’t planning on launching it, but it’s something that I thought, actually, I need to do this. Like people need it right now.
CLARE: Yeah. Awesome. Okay. If you’re listening to this and you’re feeling super inspired by this story, you need to come and give Steph a follow. She’s an amazing business woman. She’s an amazing person, a very good friend of mine. And go and check her out. So where can people find you, Steph?
STEPH: Yeah, so I’m my website, stephtaylor.co. You can find me on instagram(Replace this parenthesis with the @ sign)stephtaylor.co and my podcast is called Socialette. It’s in all of the podcast apps, or you can find that at stephtaylor.co/podcast.
CLARE: And I’ve actually been on Socialette podcast too!
STEPH: You have back way back when. It would have been, it was when I was in London. It was 2018.
CLARE: Oh my goodness.
STEPH: Two years ago. Wow.
CLARE: You’ll have to do a bit of scrolling to find that one, but yeah.
STEPH: You probably due to come back on and do another one soon I’d say.
CLARE: So let’s say, well, I, yeah, you just never know.
Steph Taylor, I have this joke with Steph, I have to tell you. She’s like, no, it’s just that whatever we see to the, I always call her Steph Taylor instead of Steph, and she always calls me Claire Wood. Steph Taylor.
STEPH: Clare Wood.
CLARE: Thank you very much. It’s been a pleasure having you on the podcast. Thanks so much for sharing.
STEPH: No worries!
CLARE: Awesome. Thanks, bye!
About your host
Hi, I’m Clare Wood – I’m a numbers geek, a travel lover, a reality tv addict, and a passionate business coach. I’m here to empower you to create an extraordinary business and an amazing life; because I believe you don’t have to choose between the two.