Recurring income. It’s one of those catchphrases you hear in the online world constantly and yet not many business owners take advantage of it seriously. They might dabble in affiliate marketing here and there or they may try to create a product or two but when you consider just how many people are trying to make a living online, not many take full advantage of recurring income.
The excuses are many: I don’t know what to produce; I don’t have the budget for outsourcing; I can’t do it all by myself; I don’t know where to start. The list goes on for miles and miles.
Creating recurring income takes work, no doubt about it. There’s no magic bullet that fills up your product library with the exact products and programs that your audience is dying to purchase. But all that work is done up front; then with some regular marketing on a schedule you choose, you can reap the profits for many years to come.
Let’s clarify one thing: recurring vs passive income. Contrary to popular belief, these two words are not interchangeable.
Recurring income means you’re receiving a regular payment every month. That may be your affiliate commission from the web hosting company you recommend or it may be payments from your membership group.
Passive income means you sold one of your products and got paid for it but it’s not a guaranteed payment every single month.
Just to be clear, passive income is awesome so don’t give up on creating your own products or writing that book! All forms of passive income are worth investigating and producing if it’s in line with your business goals.
Wouldn’t it be nice to have an emergency fund to replace an appliance that breaks, to save for university fees, or to simply take a holiday? Recurring income also means no more guessing how much you’ll bring in every month. Sure, you might lose one or two affiliate sales if people drop out of your recommended programs but overall, you’ll come to rely on that recurring income number.
So what steps do you need to take to get started on your journey towards creating a recurring revenue stream?
- Create a big fat audacious money goal. Before any planning begins, set some BIG earnings goals. If you start with your desired end result, it will be easier to map out a plan to achieve those results. What’s a reasonable amount of money that you could earn in a month? If you need a starting point, take your current monthly income and think about how much money another one or two clients would bring in. Is that reasonable for you to handle?
- Research formats that will rake in revenue forever. As mentioned, recurring income is money that comes in every month so that’s what we’re focused on in this planner. Ultimately you need to choose a recurring form of income instead of a one-and-done format, such as an eBook. Here are just a few examples of evergreen recurring income options: Online course, Membership site, Affiliate programs or Service plans/retainers
- Take an inventory of what you currently offer to your clients now. List everything, including your free items that attract prospects into your funnel. Ideally, every product you create will dovetail with your existing offerings but you must have a clear picture of what you currently have to offer before adding anything else to the mix.
- Ask your tribe: Is this a perfect fit for you? Part of truly knowing your target audience is understanding their buying habits and their needs. Many times if you ask someone what they need to solve a problem or to make their lives better, they won’t be able to give you a firm answer. Sometimes they need your help in understanding that YOU have the solution they’ve been looking for.
- Knuckle down and set your budget. As you’re researching what type of recurring revenue model to begin, also think of any expenses you’ll incur so you’re not hit with any surprises. This exercise also helps you understand your ROI for starting a recurring revenue plan, especially when it comes to starting a membership site as there is continuing work involved in that model.
- Get pumped by charting your timeline. Now that you’re ready to move forward with your online course or membership site, it’s time for the fun part: charting your timeline!. If you thought the next step was production, hold on just a moment and don’t skip this step. How often do you make a decision to start a project but then it gets put on the back burner, simply because something else came up or life got in the way? If you don’t treat your projects with the same importance as a client, then you’ll never get your products or recurring revenue started.
- Dig into the details by outlining your content. Now that you have your production timeline and deadlines scheduled, it’s time to plan out your content. Outlines work best and keep you organized both for brand new products and for those you need to update.
- Get support from the pros. Don’t add to your stress level by trying to be a one-person show. You’re serving your 1:1 clients, do you really have time to manage the backend of your business on top of creating products from scratch? Only a masochist would take on that stress; also remember, if you’re stretched for time, of course, your clients will come first, so where does that leave your recurring income plans? Most likely, pulling up the rear and getting pushed off further and further into the future.
- Prepare for liftoff! Yes! You’ve planned and outlined and budgeted and produced…now it’s time to launch, right? Well, if you can hold off just a little bit longer, you really should perform a beta test on your offering with a handful of people. It always helps to get some feedback before launch and, let’s face it, you’ve been working so closely on this project that you may not have noticed a few kinks in your system. When you launch a new product, class, or membership, even the slightest hiccup can put a halt in your sales. So, ask a few trusted friends to go through the buying process to be sure the links work, the price is correct, any coupons you’re offering work, and any OTOs (one time offers, or upsells) show up correctly (right landing page, working links, etc.)
So there you have it 9 steps that you follow to ensure that you are taking action every week and every month to incorporate new recurring income streams and watch your business blossom with profits!
If you are ready to :
Create a consistent flow of income, month to month, that is not reliant on your 1:1 clients?
Leverage your knowledge and be seen as an expert in your field?
Then let’s get started on mapping out your recurring income within 48 hours with my easy to follow 30-day planner.