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  • Writer's pictureTroy Ericson

"Get a real job"

"Why haven't you applied for a job yet??" I was 22 & my parents were hounding me for a lack of effort to find a job. I was about to graduate college - and they were right. I hadn't tried at all to find a job. (hint hint) I'd spent my free time outside of school & baseball working on building out a client's business to over 147k subscribers & 22k paying customers in less than 1 year.

So I KNEW I had the skill - and I had started to build out a Facebook Ad Agency (which eventually would shift to email). My hope was that I could build up to at least $4k/mo so I wouldn't have to get a "real job". But the pressure from my parents was getting outrageous. So I emailed a few potential employers just to appease mom & dad. Most didn't reply. Some said, "Sorry, we don't need you right now." Which I was cool with. Unfortunately, one of them replied & told me to come in. So I put on a suit & tie and drove an hour to Columbus, Ohio. I forced myself to say all the right things, and since I'm pretty diligent - I wasn't surprised that I got a second interview. So I had to put on the suit the second time & make the drive again. Only this time, the interviewer said, "Troy, you're saying all the right things - and we want to like you - but it really doesn't seem like you want to be here."

I told him he was right. But he was actually super chill & understood the entrepreneurial bone in my body. So they offered a compromise & had me do some remote work between then & graduation so I could decide what I wanted to do. So I started setting up some simple Facebook ads for them. Turned out, the stuff I'd been doing with Facebook ads for my clients was wayyyyyyy more advanced than the stuff they were having me do for their clients. I saw a lot of errors, too, and when I brought them up... They started asking me questions about the best ways to do things. Which was really awkward given that their job offer was the equivalent of ~$40k/yr. So at that point I knew that I wasn't going to learn as much there as I would continuing my agency.

So to the dismay of my parents & the employer, I didn't accept the job. I didn't really make much more money until 2020 rolled around. I was just HAPPY that I didn't have to deal with sitting in an office all day long doing menial tasks that didn't teach me anything. So I kept grinding on my own... failing... learning... growing... and repeating. And through a long series of events... I quickly realize that running Facebook Ads for clients was getting risky. Compliance was getting tougher AND there was a red ocean of "Facebook Ad Experts" out there. And not many of my clients knew how to manage an email list or make any money off of it at all. So I started managing lists based on the limited experience I had for my very first client I mentioned earlier. But through it all, I evolved from a Facebook Ad copywriter, to an Email Copywriter, to an Email List Manager, to a Deliverability Expert. And thaaaaaat's where things took off in 2020 - because I was able to find a LARGER problem with a SMALLER pool of "experts".

So the clients were mine for the taking. And as word spread of someone getting good results with me... Soon another. And another. And another. Which meant that my months went from looking like $3.7k to $10k to $16k to $32k to now over multiple 6 figures per month in 2021. Now, I don't say any of this to brag. I say it to show you that pivoting & making adjustments is THE key to success. So whether you're a business owner or a freelancer... I just want you to know... You don't have to blow up your business model & start all over to be successful. You just need to pivot based off of the feedback around you. If no one seems to care about what you're doing, make a small shift. For example, going from a copywriter to a list manager... Or going from a coaching offer to a Done-For-You offer... Or going from a fitness offer to a 'Body Transformation' offer... Etc, etc. Little changes can make BIG differences. Remember that if you're ever feeling stuck,

Troy P.S. If you want to try out my strategy for moving your emails from the Promo Tab to the Primary Tab (instantly higher open rates), you can sign up here. P.P.S. This post originally came from an email I sent to my private list. If you want to see more stuff like this from me & get my Email FAQ Answer Doc for FREE (it pretty much answers every single question you have about email), you can join my list using this link.

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