Lessons From Meeting Pat Flynn And Erica Douglass

I was down in San Diego last week, visiting my brother at UCSD. While there, I decided to see if I could meet up with two of the more influential business bloggers – Pat Flynn at Smart Passive Income and Erica Douglass at Erica.biz.

I have been following both Pat and Erica for awhile now and I really admire what both of them have accomplished. Pat is a real inspiration; two years ago, he was laid off from his job as an architect and now makes a full-time living as an internet marketer and blogger. Erica is also a seasoned entrepreneur, having sold her first business at age 26 for $1.1 million and is now hard at work on her next venture.

As a fairly new blogger, I'm always looking for exposure and I was lucky enough to write guest posts on both Erica and Pat's blogs. I'm also eager for guidance, and Pat and Erica were generous enough to give me a couple of hours of their time. 

Needless to say, these conversations were some of the best learning experiences I've ever had. Here were some of my biggest takeaways.

Have A Great Story

Pat's rise to professional blogger is awesome, but what's even more incredible is the story behind it. When Pat lost his job, he was quite worried because he had a young family to support and no real training in internet marketing.  Pat is an architect by trade and his story is appealing because he has learnt everything about internet marketing along his way to success. In two years, he's gone from a complete unknown to one of the most recognizable bloggers in the "make money online" niche.

One of Pat's recommendations for me is to better articulate my own story in a way that helps me connect with people. This is something that I've really taken to heart, and I'm working hard to address this. 

Erica's blog also does a great job of telling her personal story. She emphasizes her ups and downs, and this constant fight for success resonates strongly with her audience. She does an excellent job of constantly referring to her own experiences, which adds a very nice personal touch to her brand. 

Create A Journey

Pat attributes a lot of his blogging success to his "monthly income reports." In these posts, Pat walks readers through his earnings for the month. He breaks his income down by category, and analyzes it in significant detail. 

These monthly reports accomplish several objectives. First of all, they distinguish Pat from many bloggers in the "make more money" niche. While other bloggers are often reluctant to reveal their sources of income, Pat is completely transparent. This has helped him generate a ton of buzz.

The reports are also important because they represent a journey. Readers can see Pat's growth and success over time. They can also see how his blog has grown to contribute more and more to his earning power. This is inspirational and keeps readers coming back, month after month, to see how Pat is doing.

Pat also helped me realize that my own blog can be used to benchmark one of my personal goals – more to come on this soon!

Visuals Are Important

I've never been a very visual person. For me, the content is everything. But that is not the case for most people. Visuals do matter, and the simplicity and elegance of Pat and Erica's designs has taken them a long way.

With that in mind, I'll soon be doing a full redesign of There's Money Everywhere. I'll be asking my readers for some input on this, so stay tuned – I'd love your feedback!

Good People Matter

Erica is currently in the process of building her new business, a service called Whoosh Traffic. Even though she only launched a few months ago, she is already doing quite well. 

When I asked about the driving forces behind her success, Erica told me that the right people were the most important factor. Things go wrong in any new venture, but with the right team, you have a much better shot of getting through it. 

Erica is a master of delegation. She has done an amazing job of vetting her employees and figuring out exactly how to maximize productivity. I recommend checking out her blog archives if you're interested in learning more about how she does this.

Thanks Pat and Erica for a terrific afternoon! Hope to see you again soon!

7 Responses to “Lessons From Meeting Pat Flynn And Erica Douglass”

  1. Thanks for writing this, Vik! It was great to meet you as well.
    -Erica

  2. Great article Vik, and when I read that you met up with Erica, well, now I KNOW it's a small world.  Happy the two of you got a chance to meet, she has a real knack for teaching the ins and outs of blogging–and her bluntness and candor are what really set her apart from many of the other business bloggers out there. Keep it going!
    Dan

  3. Major props to you Vik for scoring these two guest posts and then catching up with both of them yourself—you could not have picked 2 better examples and mentors.
     
    Keep up the great work. :-)

  4. Pat says:

    Hey Vik! Great post, and again it was a pleasure to meet with you and chat the other day. I can't wait to see what's in store for you, your blog and your other businesses in the future! If you're ever back in town, please let me know so we can hang out again! Cheers!

    • Vik says:

      Thanks Pat! We’ll touch base soon. Also have a post up today on Think Traffic that you should check out – you’re in it =)

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