Lured by the promise of “six figures”?
Six figure course gurus. They’re everywhere. Six figures is the magical unicorn number of success right? The bar that you must reach before you can be an expert and a legit online business entrepreneur!
I even used the “six figure” income goal as a marketing lure a few years ago in my own business *cringe*. It was unoriginal and inauthentic. It was lazy marketing on my part. I apologise for being cheezy and cringey.
Six figures or .. bust…
If, like me, you have been lured by the six-figure carrot it can feel like nothing good happens before then. It can feel like you’re a failure or an imposter if you have a business or online course that doesn’t flood you with six figures worth of dollar bills each year.
I held off on launching a course because I had not reached the golden number. I even bought a course about creating online courses after I finished writing MY course about creating an online course #WTF. Confusing right?
I already knew what I was doing. I already had what many consider a healthy passive income stream (it isn’t passive by the way, more about that another day!).
I spent thousands to figure out I was already successful
The course content I invested in was completely useless to me, there was not one thing I learned about growing my business to six figures. I was so frustrated that there was no magic pill, no missing bit of the puzzle that I now had.
Was it a total loss? No. The Facebook Group offered to members, gave me a huge insight into the promise of six figures.
Out of the many thousands of members just a very small handful (maybe 3 or 4) had hit six figures. The vast majority had never launched, of those who had most were making $5 – 6k per month. #lightbulb moment right there! I was already more successful than most.
What does “I have a six figure business” even mean?
So now let’s talk about why six figures is so dang misleading. Firstly, six figures could be $100,000 or $999,999. There is a huge difference right there!
I have noticed marketers now tack on “multiple six figures” which I can only assume means something with a 2 or 3 in front. Secondly…
Six figures doesn’t mean profit!
I have talked a lot about my lone online ranger status. It is one of the main reasons I created “How to Create Your First Online Course” and why community is such a big part of it.
When you’re alone online the only way to benchmark your success is to look at social media. Fancy photo shoots and gorgeous backdrops backed by the six-figure statements had me believing these ladies online were killing it!
Imagine my total surprise when I met some online buddies and found out that many online success stories had very little profit. They looked the part but were still struggling to make a living.
Huh? How can that be??
If you have to outsource every single bit of your online business you’re going to need some big sales numbers to make enough to cover your payday plus everyone else you outsourced to.
I am so glad I learned to do so much myself. It was frustrating at times, it has slowed me down for sure but I have made money from day 1. My first course was $12k in sales of which most was profit.
While the six figure gang were investing in custom built tricked out membership sites, professional video, and pricey software I was busy making moolah from my D-I-Y video’s and basic website to keep a roof over my head and food in my belly.
If you have to spend $50K to make $100K is it really a six figure business?
Technically, yes it is a six figure business. You could spend $250k per year, and make $200K (so you would actually be losing money) and still claim the “six figure success” status. Weird huh?
What number do YOU need?
Six figures is an arbitrary number. It has nothing to do with you or your goals. Who cares about six figures if five figures will help you live a better life?
+ If you’re a mum who is desperate to work from home you might only need a $40k business to make that happen
+ If you already have a job but really want to pay off your mortgage then $25k per year could be life changing
+ If you’re a coach who can’t get past the $30k point an online course may be an awesome way to double your income without taking on more clients.
Know what YOU need and work towards that. My first goal was to replace my one on one coaching business income which I have done (yes I still take clients because I actually really enjoy the work). My next goal is to be 100% debt free. After that, I want to pay cash for an investment property. None of these goals are about “six figures”.
p.s There are obviously some “six figure guru’s” out there who really know their stuff, they will be the ones sharing valuable content, not just number based promises.
Happy course creating!
OMG Melanie, YES, YES and YES! I’ve worked 1:1 with a couple of 6-figure businesses and they definitely weren’t making a 6-figure profit, the expenses were THROUGH THE ROOF!
This post is such a breath of fresh air and I’m so glad someone’s finally calling BS on this whole 6-figures thing. It’s about time!