My Failures For The Last 9 Months and Why I’m Sharing Them

When we fail at something, our natural tendency as human beings is to hide it.

We fear of losing credibility or being looked down upon by others when sharing our own failures.

But who doesn’t have any failure at all in his/her entire life?

It’s just an inevitable part of our journey to success.

And yes, even the billionaires fail often too.

Instead of hiding and shying away from failures, we should embrace them, learn from them and quickly move on because they’re just things of the past.

In this article, I will be sharing with you my failures over the last 9 months and some of the lessons learned.

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Failure #1 - The Authority Blogging Business Case Study

It was around September last year that I had an idea for another case study which I set out to build an authority website and document my progress publicly on the blog.

My excitement for the project was very high in the first few weeks but it quickly died off.

I did choose a niche I was interested in.

I did set up a nice branded website.

I did hire some quality writers and create a few pieces of content.

But I was spending too much time trying to make everything perfect that I never launched the website.

Eventually, I lost my motivation and decided to stop working on it completely.

The cost of this failure: $3,000+

Lesson Learned

Having a business plan before launching any new project. Create a minimum viable product and launch it. Don’t fail for perfectionism.​

Failure #2 – Trying to Automate Teespring With a New Team

After stopping the authority project, I honestly didn’t know what to do next at the time.

My Amazon sites were either getting penalized after the PBN update or earning very little income.

Cloud Living wasn’t making much money and I never wanted to push products and turn myself into a make money online guru.

Fortunately, I had a healthy amount of savings from old successful ventures so I didn’t have to worry about making enough income to pay the bills while trying to build up a new business.

At the time, some of the friends that I regularly talked to were still killing it with Teespring bringing in mid five or six figures every month and one of them asked me to join the team.

I had no clear direction at the time so I decided to say yes thinking I would get back for a while, make some money and then stop because I never enjoyed doing Teespring even though a few months ago I made closely to six figure with it.

In December, I launched 30 campaigns and got a little bit of profit.

In January, I bought a Teespring training course for $6k and 100% committed to succeed.

And I did. In the following 45 days, I profited over $4k5 from my campaigns and decided to hire help to scale it big time.

Things started to go wrong from here.

Too excited about the quick wins, I invested a lot of time and money into hiring people and building out processes with the ultimate goal of letting my team run the business completely by themselves.

My burn-rate was around $2k a month. I stopped launching new campaigns to focus on training people and hoped that we could ramp up faster when they’re ready.

Boys was I wrong. It wasn’t as easy as it might sound.

I did hire very good people and they got the business very fast. But they just couldn’t replace myself completely. Not just yet.

We had tons of new ideas to launch from the weekly plans, but 80% of them never got launched due to the fact that I kept pushing off my responsibility to do the targeting and the ads.

Days and weeks got wasted because of my inability to get important things done.

Eventually, I decided to quit Teespring and this time I’m completely done with it.

The cost of this failure: $10,000+

Lessons Learned

Don’t get into a business just for the money, especially something that you knew before hand that you didn’t like doing.

Premature hiring is costly. Hire whenever your business can afford it or at least have proven to be profitable consistently.

Failure #3 – Not Learning to Manage My Financials Well

Because I never kept track of income or expenses, I didn’t know that I was making or burning a lot of money until I actually paid attention to those numbers.

As long as I stopped overspending on Teespring and other stuff, I’m immediately profitable again. No I’m not bringing in a lot of dollars per month yet, but at least my cashflow is positive now.

Cost: I don’t even know. Probably a lot.

Lesson Learned

“Know your numbers. All businesses run on money. If you don't understand money, you don't understand business – Brendan Tully"

Why Am I Sharing These Failures?

It’s really hard to talk about failures publicly, especially to those who trusted you and followed you.

But I really wanted to do this post. Why?

Because I want to show you the reality and don’t want you to idealize me.

Yes, I did have past successes but they didn’t make me a foolproof person.

And I’m far from a successful entrepreneur. I’m more like a 21 year old guy with big dreams and ambitions for success.

I will sure make mistakes again but every mistake and how I deal with it will shape who I’m becoming 5 – 10 years from now.

It’s also the same for other bloggers and people around you. You never know what they’re struggling with in their lives.

Don’t compare yourself with other people. Just try to become better than you were everyday.

Conclusion

I’m writing the last few sentences for this article. And I feel relieved.

Having time to review and talk about my failures to you actually helped me to feel better and get ready to start fresh again.

On the bright side, my last 9 months weren’t only consisted of failures, here are some good news:

  • I’m still able to maintain an active healthy lifestyle which is my #1 priority.
  • I turned 21 while going on a 3-day vacation with my family last month. It was great to celebrate birthday with people who care about me the most.
  • My amazon affiliate theme Authority Azon is making good passive income every month despite me not spending any effort on promotion.
  • My girl friend’s local skincare e-commerce store is growing significantly. Sales have been great and we’re excited to grow this into a six-figure business very soon.
  • Cloud Living’s traffic is still staying stable without me posting much. I’m still thinking about the future of the blog . Should I focus more and grow this into something big?

It’s been an exciting journey for me so far. Thanks for your following and I will be sure to keep you posted.

I want to hear from you too.

What were some of the mistakes that you’ve made and how did you deal with them?

Tung Tran

Tung Tran is the founder of CloudLiving.com.

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