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Building an Online Business on a Budget

Budget friendly online business tools and tactics

Starting a business can be expensive but now more than ever the barrier to entry is affordable to nearly everyone. Building a business on a budget is Sarah St. John’s expertise. She’s the host of a popular podcast “The Frugalprenuer” and shows you how to start a business for as little as $100 and provides a list of great tools and tips to save you money.

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Tim Kubiak 0:05
All right. Thanks for listening to bow ties and business. I’m your host Tim Kubiak. As always, you can find us at bow ties in business on Facebook and Instagram and bow ties and bi z on Twitter. Today we’re joined by Sarah say, john, she’s an entrepreneur, podcaster, author, animal lover, and world traveler. She’s created several startups throughout her entrepreneurial career over the past decade. She has books, blogs, and a podcast herself. Her goal is to show you how to launch and manage an online business on a budget as little as $100 a month. Have you are a member of your team missed a committed deal or lost a sale without even knowing why 2020 has been a crazy year, we’ve developed the redzone sales opportunity management app to help you go from my thing to I know in all your most important deals. To learn more visit Tim forward slash red Zell. And with that, Sarah, thank you so much for being here. And welcome to the show. Sarah, welcome to show tell us a little bit about yourself. Tell us a little bit about your podcast as well.

Sarah St. John 1:16
Well, my name is Sarah St. JOHN, I’m the host of the frugal printer podcast, building a business on a bootstrap budget. And how I got the idea for the podcast was actually I’ve been an entrepreneur for over a decade now. But I started with a photography business. And, and while I realized that I love taking photos of like animals and in landscape and architecture, I didn’t really like taking photos of people, which is where the money is, I was doing, you know, portraits and weddings and whatnot. And so I decided, well, in a bigger issue than that actually was just the expense of maintaining equipment, and cameras, lighting, software, all of that. And so I decided that I’d like to move online, try to do an online business. And so I tried different things like drop shipping, affiliate marketing, blogging, a T shirt, company, all these different online things. And it was kind of in the process of that, that I was like discovering all these services and tools that I could operate the business on for either free or really affordably. And I was actually in a Dave Ramsey class for Financial Peace. And I don’t know if you’re familiar with that, but I think a lot of people are so I was in the class. And he talks about like, saving money and paying off debt and all of that. And I was like, okay, all of these ideas are great, but what about making more money? You know, to help with that. And so then, which I had kind of been doing with the online businesses, I was like, the word frugal printer came to my mind at that point, out of nowhere. And I was like, Oh, I could write a book about all the first of all the ways you could make money online, the different options, and then how to do it affordably. With all the tools and resources I’ve discovered. And so I started writing the book for go printer. And then I was like, I should start a podcast to coincide with the book, and it was just gonna be like a short lived thing, you know, maybe, I don’t know, 10 episodes or something to kind of go along with the book. But then I ended up loving the podcast so much, and was getting more, I guess, feedback and leverage and whatnot from that than even the book. So I was and I loved interviewing people and like, learning from them. And all of that knows, like, maybe this is where it’s at. So I’ve, I’ve stuck with the podcasts I have, like, I think 55 or so episodes published currently. And I just love it. And basically, I just kind of go over on the podcast, a lot of what kind of the book covers, but then beyond that, you know, with interviews and whatnot.

Tim Kubiak 4:20
So you website itself is actually a really great resource. So I’m gonna have you point people a couple things there. Because as I was going through it in preparation, I’m always looking for a deal. And you’ve got a list of tools. But so a lot of our listeners are, frankly, a lot of my demographics, young women, right. And a lot of them are trying to figure out how to start a business and one of the things when I first you know, you reached out was you had starting a business on $5. Mm hmm. Can you

Sarah St. John 4:52
talk about that a little bit more? Sure. Yeah. So, with an online business, the first thing you will Need a course, I believe is a website. And once you figure out what direction you’re going, and all of that, and figure out what you want your website to be called. And so there’s going to be some preliminary stuff before that. But once you actually decide on what route you want to go, what kind of business you want to have to get a website, which you can actually do for free at WordPress. Well, you do have to pay for the domain, but you can get a domain for $1. On one in one, it’s the number one and Or actually, I think it’s IO ns. Now they changed their name. Yeah, the your first year is like $1. And then $15, a year after that. So so there’s $1. And then WordPress is free, unless you pick, you know, a particular theme that costs money or something. And then starting an email list from the get go would be important. And there’s some free options. If you’re going to be a content creator of some sort, whether it’s a podcaster, a blogger or YouTuber, I would recommend Sindh, Fox is actually free. But what’s great about it is you put in your link or your RSS feed. So for a podcast or a blog, it’d be RSS feed for YouTube, it would be the link. And every week, it automatically pulls from there and creates a newsletter that gets sent out, you can either have it sent out automatically, or you can have it just save it to where you can go in and edit it. But it saves a lot of time, because now all your podcast episodes or YouTube videos, or blogs, or whatever is all in this email. And it’s, it saves so much time. So there’s sin, Fox. And then if you’re not a content creator, another good option is mailer lite, which is free up to I think one to 2000 I think it’s 1000 subscribers. And of course you can do like landing pages and all that. So yeah, so a domain, a website, a mailing list, and so far, we’re only at $1. Nice. And then of course a logo, which you could design yourself in Canva for free. Or you could pay someone five bucks on Fiverr, which I would recommend. Unless you know a lot about, you know, designing logos, and

Tim Kubiak 7:35
I’ll be honest, I went to five bucks on Fiverr. Rob.

Sarah St. John 7:38
Yeah, yeah, I do that for my cover art too. Like my podcast cover art. And like my book covers, I do everything on Fiverr. Pretty much. So I guess those would be the primary things to first get started for basically $5.

Tim Kubiak 7:56
So not everybody knows what’s a drop shipper. What’s an affiliate marketers? So do you mind going through that a little bit?

Sarah St. John 8:03
Oh, sure. Yeah. Okay. So drop shipping is basically how do I explain this in the simplest way. It’s, you’re basically the middleman between like a customer buying a product and the wholesaler or distributor. And so basically, instead of having products, taking up space at your house, or whatever your office is, you don’t have to maintain any kind of inventory. So you have an online shop, and you should niche down, like don’t just sell anything, and everything on your shop needs to be like when I was doing drop shipping, I did baby clothes. That was my niche, like one season stuff. And so once you pick a niche, you can. So it depends on if you’re doing Shopify or WordPress, Shopify is more expensive, that’s like 29 a month. But you could use an app with that called oberlo ob er, l Oh. And it’s basically a bunch of different wholesalers and distributors, primarily in China, that’s the only downside because it takes so long for people to get their stuff. And we’re so used to you know, two day shipping with Amazon. So that’s really the only thing because it could take two to six weeks, maybe for someone to get what they ordered. And you just got to make that clear on your website. But, uh, and so you can import those products into your shop and so when someone buys it on your website so because it’s a wholesaler, let’s say, like some of the ones these for example, only costs me like $2 So when someone buys on the website a Wednesday for let’s say, $10 or even 20. So then Okay, so then I’m getting the 10 or 20, or whatever, in my stripe account, let’s say. And then I have to turn around and spend the two bucks or whatever to actually order the product, but it’s all kind of synced to where like their address and their their billing and shipping and credit card, all that stuff goes over to the wholesaler,

Tim Kubiak 10:30
it passes through pretty much you click a button, all of that goes to the wholesaler, you’re not rekeying things is that?

Sarah St. John 10:36
Yeah, for the most part, yeah, it’s pretty.

Pretty seamless. I mean, you just have to click a button basically. Yeah. So that to do it that way. That’s about like 29 a month. But if you want to use WordPress, I discovered recently a plugin called Ollie Express dropship or Alli dropship. And Alli Express, that’s a big wholesaler. And so it’s just a plugin, but what I like it’s a one time fee of I think it was like 67 or $69. But just one so it’s not a monthly fee. And what’s nice about that plugin is it only shows you products that have like high or high rated, have lots of reviews, or maidwell. You know, that kind of thing. Whereas with that other app last I knew it didn’t. The overload one is only for Shopify, you can’t use it with anything else. Okay? Yeah. So. So the more affordable option would be to do the WordPress site with the plugin, the Alli dropship plugin. So of course, so for each sale, you’re probably not making a whole lot of money, you know, 10 or $20, versus having maybe like a consulting business or something like that. But for someone not sure what they want to do that. That’s an option. But again, the only problem is the, the long delivery times you can get there are distributors in the US and Europe. But so you people might get their stuff sooner. But it costs a lot more. And so the profit margin isn’t nearly as high. So it’s kinda like if you’re going to bother with drop shipping, mainly for the fact of such large profit margins. You know, I would recommend China, but

Tim Kubiak 12:39
so I’ll tell you years ago, and I’m talking 12 1314 years ago, I actually ran a dropship Halloween costume business, ah, and I i sourced from a place in the United States. And you’re right, the profit margins, you know, weren’t as good if I’d have gone offshore. Mm hmm. But the upside was, is everything was shipping off the east coast. So I targeted most of my customers there. Hmm. You know, and that way, I was getting most things to people in three, four or five days.

Sarah St. John 13:12
So did you like that business? or? Yeah, so

Tim Kubiak 13:15
there were there were actually three parts of the business. I had the costumes business, believe it or not, I had a garden and statuary business and a fountain business. And the fountains were a couple of grand a pop to 40 $50,000 a pot. So the costume business is great, right? We could drop it on somebody mail, in their mailbox using Postal Service goes UPS, FedEx, again, you know, you have to have a street address. And, you know, but for the most part that work fountains, people didn’t want to pay for the lift gate to get thing off the truck. So they’d order a 4000 pound fountain that would show up at their house, you know, and it became one of those pricing model things work. If I built the liftgate into the cost, nobody bought. If I didn’t, then everybody was upset. So if, you know, it was a good experience, I actually had really, that was the thing that I had hoped to scale and in corporate life took over again, and I got out of the business when the sales tax codes all started to change, huh?

Sarah St. John 14:13
Yeah. Yeah. And then as far as affiliate marketing, the way that works is you’re basically referring someone else’s product or service or software. And then say you make a sale through your link. You would make a commission on that. And so a lot of bloggers and podcasters and stuff. We use affiliate marketing, like when they refer a particular product or service, of course, I recommend only referring stuff that you actually use or something that you highly recommend versus just whatever has the biggest payout. Mm hmm.

Yeah, that how

Tim Kubiak 14:57
do you match that

to your content again, is in that kind of space? Right? If I’m, you know, I’m a nerd. So write bow ties, coffee things for me, like that are logical, but how? How do how does somebody go back and look and say, going back to your photography business? You know, I’m writing a photography blog, or I’m writing a whatever, you know, how do you pick the products? for fun?

Sarah St. John 15:21
So, let’s Yeah, we’ll go with a photography example. Let’s, I never use affiliate affiliate marketing with my photography, because I didn’t even know about it back then. But if I had like, say, I had a blog, I’m like teaching people how to do photography, I would, you know, recommend certain maybe lenses or cameras or equipment or whatever that I use. And assuming that that company, let’s say, canon, or Nikon or whoever has affiliate program, which they probably do, well, actually, a lot of most companies have an affiliate program, I would basically just link to that, like I would talk about, I’d probably put an image in there talk about what makes this lens or whatever, or this camera, so great. And, and link to it. So like for my business now. With no the Free Will printer, podcast and all that. I haven’t done it a whole lot with the podcast. But like, I have that resources page, or the tools I use page, I recently changed it to tools I use. But um, I did one podcast episode recently about sin, Fox, they don’t have an affiliate program, but like, say they did. I could, you know, link to that in the show notes. But, so I haven’t done a whole lot. Or say I have someone on the show, who has a book. And then I put the book in the show notes, like a link to Amazon. It could, Amazon has their own affiliate program where. So I could link to the book, and it goes to my Amazon affiliate link and say they buy the book. But even if they don’t buy the book, and say they’re shopping around on Amazon, because they’re already on there, and they buy who knows what, let’s say they buy a big screen TV, Not likely. But you know, you actually make an affiliate commission on anything they buy on Amazon, just because they went through your link to check out this book, even if they didn’t buy the book. So that now the affiliate commission that Amazon pays out was really, really small, like, I know, two to 3%. But the the fact that you could make a commission on anything that that person buys for the next, I think they’re cookie and a cookie is how long the browser I guess keeps the link in there. Unless someone clears their history or their browser or their cookies or whatever. But I think Amazon cookie is only 24 hours, whereas most people’s are like 30 or 60 days. But as long as someone comes back to Amazon within those 24 hours and buy something, then you should make a commission on it

Tim Kubiak 18:20
should make a commission. So you talked about growing your newsletter, right? Is that another way to market whether it’s affiliate links or whatnot? Yeah, you

Sarah St. John 18:31
can do that. I haven’t done a whole lot of that yet. But I’ve seen I’m on various people’s newsletters. And I’ve seen emails like that, where they’re like, Oh, you might like this. And they kind of go into like a few paragraphs explaining why a particular course or product or software they use and recommend and then it’ll have a an affiliate link in there. And the thing with affiliate links on your website, or email or wherever is you do have to put a disclaimer that it’s an affiliate link. I don’t know some FTC thing.

Tim Kubiak 19:07
Yeah. Google doesn’t like when you don’t either, right?

Sarah St. John 19:10

Tim Kubiak 19:13
So let’s say you’re on the other side, you’ve built a course or you’ve built a product and you want to set up an affiliate program. What advice do you have for that?

Sarah St. John 19:22
I’m actually in the process of that. I’m starting a course on a podcasting course. And I’ve been looking around for a way to like what software or plugin or what can I do to where I can get my own affiliates to promote it and then they get like 50% Commission, which is the standard I think for courses. And basically I’ve narrowed it down to two main options, if I’m going the WordPress route, and I haven’t decided yet but if I go the WordPress route, I will Go with digital access pass, which is a plugin. And it like, protects your courses from like someone has to pay and register to get your course. But then when someone signs up for your course, it automatically enrolls them as an affiliate, so they can start, or people can sign up as an affiliate without having bought the course. So there’s that. And then if I decide to go off of WordPress, there’s something called kartra, k rtra. And it’s kind of like an all in one solution. You could do like funnels and landing pages and courses and all of this, and they have an affiliate program built in to where someone could sign up for your affiliate program and promote the course. And there’s probably other options too. But as far as price range that I’m looking in, those are like the two best options. I think

Tim Kubiak 20:58
those are two best options. They automate payment back to the affiliates and collect their tax information for 1099. And all of that.

Sarah St. John 21:07
I know they do handle the payments to the affiliates.

Tim Kubiak 21:13
But they must have tax info that I’m

Sarah St. John 21:15
thinking so yeah, since I haven’t signed up for that yet. I’m not for sure. But I assume so. Yeah. I’m

Tim Kubiak 21:22
just wondering who has the liability, right? Hmm.


So as long as it’s not you all’s good. You’re right. If I can you use the term every time people start looking at online business, and that’s funnels, explain what a funnel is? How it works, how to fill one, or not fill one.

Sarah St. John 21:43
Yeah, well, I think funnels have been around for a while, but I think it’s become more popular or common phrase with Russell Brunson. I don’t know if you’re familiar with him. Okay. Yeah, he he has a software company called Click Funnels. And that was kind of like the first big funnel building platform. And now there are several others, like kartra does have that in there. There’s symbole, which is si m v. OLY. builderall. There’s a few others that okay, and basically what it is it so let’s say you run like a Facebook ad or something to a webinar, maybe, or, or even like a free ebook or something. And then it takes them to your landing page, we’re all the only thing on that landing page, there’s not like a menu button or any of that stuff is just like say, if it’s a webinar, it’s just a video, if it’s a, a book that you know, it’s just the book. So the only option they have is either to leave the page or, like, sign up for it. And basically, it’s a way to get someone’s email address to where you can then grow your email list and market to them at that point, for other products that you might have, so it’s usually a freebie of some sort, like a free PDF, ebook. So enter your name and email and then it emails them, you know, an ebook, or sign up for this masterclass or webinar, and you can watch this, but then you get their email. And so then, so that’s like the first part of your funnel. And then you basically email have an email sequence. After that point, like to talk about maybe your courses or your agency, whatever, you might have other products and services. So it’s just kind of like a lead magnet or a way to, to kind of get someone in the door, I guess.

Tim Kubiak 23:57
So you’re grabbing that email, and it’s going into, in your case, send Fox or whatever service you’re using, right? And then facing them sign up, they get an email, say welcome. Here’s the course here’s the link to the video or whatever. Right? And then is the automation the thing that you get a day or two or three days later, that’s like, Hey, thanks for blah, blah, blah, here’s your discount coupon or whatever. Is that a typical automation?

Sarah St. John 24:25
Yeah, I mean, it could work a million different ways. Some people will have like a little video that they send out every day for three to seven days. Or they might do yeah, like you said the coupons like say they have an e commerce, e commerce site or something like that. Yeah, just there’s a million different ways to to set up your marketing campaign or your auto Well, I guess they wouldn’t be auto responders but auto automatic sequence i think is Usually what they call it. Okay.

Tim Kubiak 25:03
So question, what’s a good sized list? If you’re just starting out if you’ve been at it a year or three years or whatever, you know, how, what, you know, you said thousand users on the one was free. I know. You know, there’s other services that have free up to x users. So what? How do you say, this is successful? Because I’ve gotten x?

Sarah St. John 25:29
Hmm. Um, well, I mean, there’s people out there with 50,000 and 500,000 subscribers, but for the average person or business, I would say 1000 is a pretty good number, the good round number to s. I mean, they say like, what is that phrase?

Is something like?

i? Well, the gist of it is that, you know, 1000 engaged people, or even 100 engaged people is a lot better than, you know, 100,000. You know, like, say you have a social media following of 100,000, or even an email of 700,000. But let’s say 99,000 of them, like don’t even read the email or it goes a spam low

Tim Kubiak 26:25
open, right. Is that

Sarah St. John 26:28
he? Well, yeah, the higher the open rate. So well, I guess in that case, you still would have what it was about example, because I said, if 99,000 words, engaged in 1000 words, yeah. But um,

Tim Kubiak 26:45
but as a percentage, I totally get it right. You got 1%? Right. It’s in social media. I know, a lot of people have bought followers, then they’ll have thousands of followers. And you know, all but a few are bots. Because Yeah,

Sarah St. John 27:01
yeah, I’ve seen people’s social media profiles. And like, they’ll have 50,000 people on Twitter, but then like, their Facebook is only like two or 300. Like, huh, I wonder if those Twitter followers or bots or something are paid for paid? paid numbers, but But yeah, no, uh, I would say your email list is more important than social media, because on social media, they might not even see. And they probably won’t actually see, like, what you post, especially on Facebook. Because I think now only like one or 2% of your, on your page of your followers will actually see what you post. So yeah, it’s almost like you have to boost posts or pay for ads for anyone to see anything. On Facebook, at least I don’t know so much about the other platforms, but, but an email list is going directly to them. Of course, they might not. It might go to spam for some reason it could get, they might just delete it without reading. Because I get hundreds of emails, it feels like every day, and most of the time. I don’t. I mean, unless I know the person and the sub like the who it’s from, like, know them personally, or expect to be getting an email from them. Like I just signed up for something. If I don’t know them, and one of those ways, I usually delete the email without even like opening it unless the subject line is really good. And I actually got a email recently. It was a podcast related email. And the subject line was so good that I actually opened it but had the subject line had nothing to do with

what was in it, but the subject line was, um,

you, you just received a payment on PayPal or something like that, or payment received on PayPal or something. Although I think the email actually was about like, it wasn’t about PayPal, but it was about how to get people to open emails, I think. Something like that. And I was like, well, no one worked.

Tim Kubiak 29:17
Yeah, you say that’s, that’s pretty good. clickbait. Yeah. What’s, what’s the thing you’ve learned in your journey as an online business person that you expect you to ever learn?

Sarah St. John 29:35
Well, a few things I’ve learned about myself, I guess that kind of irritate me about myself is the shiny object syndrome, which I think a lot of entrepreneurs have where we’re just always thinking of new ideas and new business ideas. And so we’re like, oh, I should start that thing or do that thing. And I’ve done that throughout the years and it’s just a waste of time, most of the time, but I’m getting better at that, though. So I would say, that was something I discovered about myself. And then I was spending so much time learning, which is good to learn and educate yourself. But I was spending so much time like podcast, listening to podcasts, reading books, courses, webinars, you know, whatever, but wasn’t taking the time to implement what I was learning. So then it’s kind of pointless, like, what, why spend all this time learning if you’re not going to implement it? So then recently, I adopted this, like, for every hour, I spend learning, I’m going to spend another hour implementing, so that at least I’m it makes sense and getting something out of it.

Tim Kubiak 30:50
And have you found anything? That was a really good return on that extra hour?

Sarah St. John 30:57
Um, you mean, like the hour that I spent actually implementing? made it?

Tim Kubiak 31:01
Yeah, you’re like, oh, wow, this is massive. I, you know, I wish I knew this two months ago or two years ago.

Sarah St. John 31:06
I’m not like anything specifically, other than the fact that it frees up more time for me to actually do stuff with my business and implement. So I guess, just the time factor. And being able to get more done with my business than just learning

what to do.

Tim Kubiak 31:31
So you talked about affiliate programs and Amazon, and they’re the 800 pound gorilla, right? And we know, other retailers are trying to get there in the main consumer mind. How do you stand out and draw customers in to do transactions with you? through you know, your ecommerce site versus just run an Amazon and shopping price?

Sarah St. John 31:53
Huh? Yeah, I think that is a big problem with e commerce, which is one of the reasons that I I’m not really doing the whole drop shipping thing so much anymore. I haven’t officially closed up the shop, but I don’t really, I don’t promote it or do anything with it. Is because of the you know, the competition is? Why would someone other than providing coupon codes or something like that? Right? You know, why would someone buy through you? Or how are they even going to find you necessarily over, you know, Amazon, unless you’re selling something so unique that Amazon, you know, doesn’t carry it. But as far as non ecommerce like say, you know, podcasting, blogging and affiliate marketing with that, like, why would someone go through my affiliate link versus somebody else’s, is that sometimes you can work out a deal with the company to give you a special code, like a discount code, like go through my link and use this code. And you’ll get, you know, your first month free or 10% off or whatever it might be. Now, a lot of companies don’t? Like I’ve asked companies out in their life. Hmm. And they, they don’t know what I’m talking about, or they’ve never done it before. But others have been like, Oh, yeah, here’s a code or what do you want it to be here? So that’s one way to do it, is to get some kind of incentive for someone to go through your link versus signing up directly with the company. Because it actually when someone signs up through your affiliate link, it doesn’t cost the customer any more than signing up directly. Right. But it usually isn’t, doesn’t cost them less either. So why not just go direct? Unless there’s a coupon code or something. Another way people do it is and I haven’t really done this yet. But they do what they call like value stacking, where, like, if you go through my affiliate link, I’m going to give you XYZ for free. In addition, like,

Tim Kubiak 34:05

Sarah St. John 34:06
like, yeah, like go through my affiliate link, and basically send me proof that you did like a receipt or something, and I’ll send you all my PDFs, or I’ll send you is something like that, or I’ll send you a free course or something. Okay. Yeah, to make the offer. more valuable, I guess so that they’ll be inclined to go through your link, I guess. Okay,

Tim Kubiak 34:32
so we talked about list size. We talked about the fact I’ll never be a social media, he wrote great. Oh, guys, bow ties just aren’t hip.

Sarah St. John 34:41
That rhymes though. That’s true.

It sounds like a band name. All guys.

Tim Kubiak 34:54
Fortunately for the world, my musician days are far behind me. What’s a good traffic volume? Right? So if 1000 subscribers is a good list thousand engaged people? What’s good? Is it 10 people a day on your website? Is that 100 people a day?

Sarah St. John 35:18
No. And that’s something I, I think I have. Because I used to use like Weebly and Wix and stuff. But now I do use WordPress. And so I have a plugin installed. Is it the Google Analytic plugin? Or monster insights, there’s a few different ones that can provide analytics for your traffic. I’m really not good with checking it. So I don’t I don’t even know what my traffic is. But I guess I should, and this is made me think of that. And now I need to check that out. I keep keep an eye on that. Um, as far as what should what is good. I mean, I guess it would depend on the type of business or company. Because I’m surely you know, Amazon probably gets millions of hits a day. But like, something like mine, like my podcast, or whatever. I mean, even if I got 100 or 1000 a day, that would be really good, in my opinion. But I think on average, PRI, a really good would probably be 20,000. But I don’t know that I would ever get that much. I mean, unless you did an ad or something that was driving the traffic.

Tim Kubiak 36:45
Yeah. And that’s you can buy as much traffic as you can afford, right? That’s the thing.

Sarah St. John 36:50
Yeah, that’s true, as long as you and I’m not very good about doing Facebook ads. I there’s just something about it with me being a frugal printer that I don’t like spending money on. I don’t like spending money period, but especially on ads and boring stuff like that and stuff that I don’t necessarily right away see a result from you know, yeah, yeah.

Tim Kubiak 37:18
Yeah, I know. I played with it. I said, I’m, you know, it wasn’t a lot. It wasn’t a ton of money. I put $200 in Facebook ads, right. And I had bought a book, you know, by one of the Guru’s it said, you should be able to get followers for this price point. And, you know, again, implementation is everything. And I know, I didn’t implement it completely correct. And I was at about 100 times what he said I was supposed to be per follower, not the end of the world because it was buck apiece, huh. But to your point. Now, unless I boost the post, only five of them are seeing every post. Hmm. Right. So my what I’ve watched my engagement rates go down, you know, because I’ve turned off the tap. But I’ve turned it off back in June. I’m pretty open about it. I was getting more bounce traffic off my Facebook ads. And I was getting click throughs if people weren’t listening to people, you know, it might have been my ads. By the way. I’m not saying it was purely Facebook’s fault. But I was getting people to click the ad come to the site. And my bounce rate went up. I turned off the ads. My bounce rate literally dropped by about 50%. Oh, wow. Yeah.

Sarah St. John 38:28
Yeah, I thought about just getting rid of Facebook entirely. Because I think having a Facebook page at this point is like irrelevant. But you have to have a page in order to have ads. So that’s really the only reason I’m because I do have plans in the future when, because I have a third book coming out next month. And then I am doing the course and all the stuff. I think I’m going to run ads at that point.

So in order to run ads, I have to

Tim Kubiak 38:56
you have to have the page. Yeah, yeah. Yeah. Yeah, that’s I have I went down the whole Facebook page Instagram route, you know?

Sarah St. John 39:06
Yeah. Yeah. And I don’t even

I mean, like, anytime I have a new podcast episode, I use a an app called crowdfire. For my social media, scheduling, and yeah, management. So anytime I have a new podcast, it actually can share it out to all the platforms. But that’s about all I do on Facebook anyway. Like, I’m not even trying to get new followers on Facebook, I’ve given up because what’s the point if only one or 2% of them are going to see your posts anyway?

Tim Kubiak 39:43
Yeah, and people you know, people will eventually wise up, right. We’ve seen we’ve seen brands for political reasons and whatnot, pull things back from Facebook this year. Yeah. And I’ve read enough that I know that Google ads, the price dropped and I saw even in some of the space that I was playing in. I saw the Google Ads price come down as the economy slowed. No, I started getting a little more value out of my Google stuff.

Sarah St. John 40:09

Tim Kubiak 40:10
yeah, my conversion rates terrible. I’m a b2b sales guy. I don’t do online. Well, yeah.

Sarah St. John 40:17
Just Yeah, I’m not a big fan of any of the social stuff. I just do it because I feel like I have to.

But I don’t like it.

Tim Kubiak 40:28
So when’s the third book come out?

Sarah St. John 40:30
October 6, then it’s called podcast printer. So I have three books for printer how to launch manage and market and online business for under $100 a month. Then I had author printer because I self published and I learned so much in that process. I thought, well, I could write a book on that. And so I have a book called author printer. And then now I know so much about podcasting. And it’s like, my new favorite thing that I was like, I should write a book about that. So podcasts for newer how to produce, promote and profit with a podcast. And that’s October 6, it should be on all the platforms like Amazon and Barnes and Noble and all that.

Tim Kubiak 41:14
And will you be selling it through your inside as well?

Sarah St. John 41:17
Yeah, yeah, I should be.

Tim Kubiak 41:20
Yeah. So for anyone listening who wants a copy the links in in the show notes, just buy it off your site? Don’t create the monsters?

Sarah St. John 41:30
Yeah. And then I’ll actually my first two books, I’m giving away for free the PDF version on my website as well. And that’s at the Sarah St. forward slash free.

See, that’s one of those. That’s like a lead magnet. There?

Tim Kubiak 41:45
It is. That’s a good lead magnet, right? Yeah.

Sarah St. John 41:50
You get two books instead of one. Usually it’s one.

Tim Kubiak 41:53
Yeah, no, that’s you talking about? There’s your value stacking right. So what Haven’t I asked you that I should have?

Sarah St. John 42:05

Oh, that’s a good question. I’ve never been asked that before. Um, well, let’s see. I’ve already I’ve already explained like, where people can find me at the servicing john, which that Sarah with an H. And then St. JOHN has stdio. h in and social media everywhere at the SIR St. JOHN. Because Sarah See, john was taken the website in the social media. So I had to go with the Sarah St. JOHN.

Tim Kubiak 42:36
You know, there was a lawsuit in Ohio that made that famous You did well.

Sarah St. John 42:40
Oh, really? What? Yeah.

Tim Kubiak 42:42
So it was the Ohio State and Ohio University, and it became the Ohio State. So if you watch football, and you see somebody say that those two schools that sued each other over who could say V. All right, really, because they were trying to both present themselves as a preeminent school in Ohio, and the Ohio State one.

Sarah St. John 43:03
Oh, wow. That’s really interesting. Yeah. So maybe whoever this other series St. JOHN is, and there’s probably a few of them. I don’t know. I guess having the at the beginning makes me like the the legitimate one. I don’t know.

Tim Kubiak 43:20
Yeah. You’re the preeminent

Sarah St. John 43:23
or preeminent? Yeah.

Um, yeah, I can’t think of anything

Tim Kubiak 43:32
else. Okay. So, you know, I appreciate you taking the time. This has been really good with, you know, we’ll have you back on in the future. So as you have other things coming up, definitely, you know, and we’ll get you out to all the listeners.

Sarah St. John 43:48
Oh, I appreciate it. I’ve had fun. This has been a fun conversation.

Tim Kubiak 43:58
Again, a special thank you to Sarah for being here today. given us so much of her time. You can find all of the free things she talked about at the Sarah St. forward slash free, great way to gain your journey as an entrepreneur and in building your own online business. With that, are you willing to bet your job or your business that the big sale you’re counting on is going to come in how and when you expect no in less than five minutes if what you’re thinking is fact or fiction? Take our online assessment at Tim forward slash fact to find out

Tim Kubiak is a Business Geek, Nomad, Aging Metal Head, Nerd, & Coffee Addict. Plus the only big guy at Hot Yoga. For over 25 years he's been building high-performance sales teams globally. With over 2 billion in lifetime sales in goods and services. Tim works as a coach mentor with Founders, Business Owners, Executives, and High Performing individuals to transform companies, bring new solutions to market and achieve their professional goals.

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