( The Why ) I like helping people achieve success, and creating things.
Freelancing is a great way to help people create products, polish details or learn new perspectives, but you can serve only 1 person at a time, while with a product, you can serve millions at the same time.
It’s October already, and usually at this point or September, I was getting burned out, because of the way I’m working, I maintain the standard of my work, I put up 100%, and I just don’t settle if everything is not perfect, from my perspective.
Getting burned out in September was something usual, it was happening every year for the past 4 years, leaving work aside, not doing any new projects or freelance work until the next February, and just focusing on having fun and relaxing, yet I was still working on my plugins or personal projects that were not getting me tired, because this is what I enjoy doing, creating awesome stuff.
But this year was different, this year I’ve quit freelancing completelly, I haven’t done almost no freelance work, except for a few people which I really enjoyed working with, and just for the first months, and instead I focussed on working on my own products and sell them trough my website, jvzoo, and other colaborations, and it went much better than my previous experiences of quitting freelancing completelly, which was a 3 years ago.
This didn’t happen all by itself, I knew I was going to do this from the start of the previous year, so I’ve focused on getting enought money so I would have it prepared for a whole another year, and also maintain my routine of spending, which I’ll probably never change, because I love spending money, who doesn’t ?
( The How ) Things I’ve had ready this year in 1 February
- Money for the whole year ( probably the most important detail )
- A primary project to work on and focus ( WPEP )
I had one primary goal set for this year, and the means to accomplish that goal.
I started small, and I’ve always kept direction, and I feel like I’ve learned or reminded myself so many things, and decided to share them with you.
( Learned ) After eight months focusing strictly on my products
- The primary reason I failed at selling, was because I was marketing my products, instead of also focusing on myself or the company. This was the biggest mistake I did, people don’t buy things from you, if they don’t trust you, no matter how great the product is, or can be. I guess this lesson usually comes up with age, no matter how good a product is, you’ll never acknowledge it, if you don’t trust the person or team behind it.
- Marketing yourself is best learned from freelancing, I’m pretty good at selling myself, I didn’t even realize the fact that freelancers are actually products themselves, and most of them already have a spark of marketers in them, because everyday they’re doing the same thing, selling themselves, which is a great first step.
- A product is never ready for the market, you can always polish it and improve it, it’s best to release your product when it’s main goal is accomplished, and it’s been stable without major bugs. If people can accomplish the primary goal of your product in it’s state, it’s most likely ready for release, building a product above customer expectations and requirements is the best way to grow it and improve it.
- Rushing your product is bad, this is a lesson I learned in April when I launched an application called Push Leads, I was forced to rush the release by one month because of the decision my partners took, even if I didn’t agree to it, I was able to get the product in a stable form for the launch, with just a few small issues that were addresed after they were spotted during the product release, I wasn’t proud of the fact that people had issues with it, and it’s a mistake I’m not going to ever repeat, if I don’t see something ready, I will not release it, no matter how much pressure I get from my partners, I’d rather ruin a partnership than release something unpolished, which would lead to unhappy customers, because this application was never a priority for me, but rather an learning experiment for both marketing and interacting with Push Notifications, I’ve decided to sold it with my primary partner when it comes to jvzoo, just to learn that people buy companies without the eager to maintain them, and I’ll avoid selling my company or the products in the future to the wrong people. Don’t get me wrong, but I think they made a mistake by buying my product when they didn’t have the time to maintain it.
- You cannot do it alone, you need the right people around your product, because no matter how good you are, you cannot excell in all aspects required. I excell at development, and I also have knowledge of marketing and creating courses, which gives me perspective of the needs of my customers. And when I chose a partner I try to pick them if they excel in a domain where I’m not good at, because that’s how you grow a self-sustaining company.
- Customer interaction is key, I actually enjoy talking to my customers and interacting with them, because there’s so many things to learn from people using your work, they see details I cannot see, and my customers also see opportunities and features I don’t see, and you should always try to learn from your customers, because in the end, they’re the people that grow your company, and your product, while your product is improving their work or their life.
- Blogging is great, I wrote a few blog posts in the past, but I’ve done it in my attempt to learn people programming, now I’m doing it as a hobby, to relax myself. And once you find your reason why to blog, you’ll be able to clear your head like never before. If you take my first blog posts, you can immediatly notice that those are not polished and properly written, but it was my start, and I continued my journey into blogging and spending more time when I was posting, and eventually I got here, it’s still far away from perfection, but I’ll get there, just like everything else.
- Dedication is key, I knew this from the start, I always knew that hard work beats talent, but there’s more factors than hard-working, as I’ve specified in my Course about Product Creation, proper planning is the key for everything, knowing everything as it happens gives you room to adapt, and having the mobility to react to any situation is a very important aspect in everything.
I’m happier and more productive than ever, it took me 3 years to get to the point I wanted, but I enjoyed every single aspect of the road to this point, because in the end, I don’t feel like the bad aspects are hunting me, and they don’t keep me away from sleeping at night, but do you know what keeps me away from sleeping at night ?
Improving my softwares, my blog posts, my courses, the way I interact with my family and every detail in my life that still needs improvements, this is what keeps me away from sleeping at night, but I enjoy it to a certain point, because I am a perfectionist, and I like things that work without issues.