How I Survived and Achieved my First $10K Month
I ran an inconsistent lead generation agency for 11 months, never scraping above $5K/month. I pivoted toward lead gen+consulting and made my first $10K month within 10 days this last November - Here are the exact steps I took, with client acquisition strategies, hires, pivots, and timestamps on each major decision
I want to take a moment to show gratitude to Andrew! He is one of the first YouTuber's I watched that inspired me to go down the path of entrepreneurship. I don't know if I would be here if it wasn't for him and his videos. I am sure a lot of you feel the same!
This will be a long post. If you don’t like to read details or specifics, best that you skip this.
BUT, for folks who take the time, I’m pretty much revealing all the pieces that took my business from zero to my first $10K Month.
Background
(Sep 2020) For context, I had my first sales role out of college during COVID, where I was cold calling for a grocery store hardware and software company. This was not a great time for me. I was very avoidant and just dialed all day. It taught me some of the volume needed for cold outreach, but realized this wasn’t what I wanted to do. During this time I started my first ecommerce brand on Amazon! Selling footrests for office use. This was my first taste of entrepreneurship.
(May 2022) About a year and a half in, I had discovered some of Alex Hormozi’s first videos and started to watch Hamza. I realized I wanted more and started to improve my skills and mindset, eventually getting hired at an Amazon Agency for double my salary. It was a great symbiotic relationship as I got to learn more for my Amazon business and the role at the same time.
This was my first experience with LinkedIn. I was reaching out to 7, 8, and 9 figure eCommerce brands to set meetings, create proposals, and close clients.
The outreach process was all manual and very time consuming, it took me 3-4 hours to send out my daily 20 connection requests and do around 25-50 follow ups. I was working 60 hours+ a week just to create and close enough pipeline. Having to juggle lead gen and closing with the manual processes was a nightmare.
I knew there had to be a better way.
After looking into softwares like ZoomInfo and Seamless nothing really clicked… until I came across LinkedIn automation. I was blown away. This is exactly what I was looking for.
I began by creating outreach campaigns and my world was revolutionized. No more manual outreach process. Just qualified convos and booked meetings.
Now with great power, came great responsibility and I quickly learned I couldn’t just pitch people, I needed to relate and spark a conversation, which holds true to today.
During this time, I had gone through a transformation coaching program which entirely changed my identity and goals.
I realized many businesses didn’t even know about this approach let alone how to do it properly. I wanted to do this for them, I wanted to be an entrepreneur full time.
In November 2022 I started working on my company Delta Lead, and in Jan 2023… I was fired. I had practically quiet quit, I was burnt out from working on someone else's dream rather than my own. I should have gotten the balls to quit myself, but the situation ended up the same nonetheless.
Month 1-3 Getting Started
First experience as a full time entrepreneur! I had started outreach campaigns right away looking to set meetings with Texas based small businesses.
I had no niche, at the time I considered niching down to ecommerce companies (which was not a bad idea at the time) but I didn't and tried to serve any and all businesses. This was probably my biggest mistake in the first year.
My offering was to set up automation, build targeted lists, create outreach messages, and meet monthly to provide updates and consultation.
I was sending out messages, booking meetings, and actually closed my first 2 clients in February. I charged a $1500 setup fee with a $500 monthly retainer on a 3 month minimum. Software costs ate $200 of that revenue for each client on a monthly basis.
In March I closed my third client and things were starting to get exciting.
However I started to notice a few of the things that didn’t sit well with me:
1. 1 of my clients was doing well and the others seemed to be struggling.
2. I was taking my clients' word for knowing their market and how to message instead of finding out myself.
3. I was passing messages off at first reply and I could not have a conversation or close a deal for them. I could not effectively put money in their pocket.
4. I did not have conviction that what I was doing brought as much value as I would have liked.
Month 3-6
March through June, I continued to do cold outreach, and closed 2 more recurring revenue clients (monthly price now at $1000) and did my first one off client on a list, messaging, and campaign build for $1000.
I stayed available for questions and feedback to make tweeks, but contact slipped away and I don’t think I was able to generate the best results. I never did a one off like this again.
During this time I was booking plenty of meetings, but not really closing. In hindsight I believe this was due to not having a solid offer or overwhelming conviction in my service.
I also lost 2 of my recurring rev clients, one went back to a full time job and the other had gotten too busy with work.
I also read 100M Offer for the first time… and didn’t do any of the exercises or implement anything (YIKES)
In June I closed my first client at a $1500 setup and $1000/mo recurring rev.
Overall during this period, I wasn’t working as hard as I could’ve. Was definitely going for a recurring revenue coast with an overinflated sense of value I was providing. To quote Alex Hormozi, “everyone wants recurring revenue, no one wants recurring work.”
Month 7-10 Turning Point
July through October, I had hired a VA to handle messaging, while I thought this was a good investment at the time. I didn’t keep close enough of an eye on him and 3 months later realized he was clocking in for an hour and doing nothing for many days in the past. I worked with a company who hired and managed VAs, and had screen captured and logs of time, but didn’t check the whole time… that was on me.
I closed 2 more clients back to back in July with a $1500 setup and $1000/mo recurring rev.
At this point in July I was making $4000 a month recurring rev ($1000 was my cost).
I was pleased with what I was earning and started to celebrate, spending more time relaxing or hanging out with friends. I should have done the opposite and really focused on continuing to grow.
I ended up having the 2 new clients be a bit uneasy and rough to set up and get going. I even lost a client after 2 months, this was partially due to me not being 100% confident in our strategy, and I let him get into impatience and doubt, when I should have stood firm.
This is the first time I really started to feel bad about my offering, like I wasn’t doing enough.
I noticed some of my clients succeeded and others struggled. I really wanted to understand why this was. After doing some digging and surveying, I realized my successful clients already had product market fit, they were disciplined, and had sales experience. My clients who were not so successful were missing some of those key traits.
I really became hungry to improve and fully stand behind the work I was doing with conviction.
I ended up meeting an individual who had been at Microsoft for 17 years and wanted to start his own consultancy, but had no clue where to start.
After getting into a deep discussion and ACTUALLY DISCUSSING WHAT HE NEEDED (I emphasize here because I realized up until this point, I had an offer no one wanted, being humble was the first HUGE step for me). I offered to work with him for a month and build out his entire foundation for $1000.
I built out his Avatar, targeted list, messaging, and gave him guidance on performing follow up. I had more 1-1 time with him than I did other clients in the past. Within a week after our engagement he had 3 full time opportunities. It was working.
Month 11 First $10K month
This is when I cracked open $100M Offers again, and actually did the exercises. Business started to click for me. I realized this whole time I had a mediocre offer and product that I couldn’t get behind with conviction. I had no guarantees or bonuses and didn’t use any scarcity or urgency.
I started to pivot toward consulting and took Alex’s advice to overdeliver for my first few clients and ensure they got results, then look to scale.
During this time period I actually closed a client for cold email, he knew it was my first time doing so, and I began to over deliver, helping him with lead magnets and business strategy outside of our scope. He paid $1500 setup and paid for 3 months of service at once bundled to $6750. This was my first $10K month!
I started another engagement similar to my client from Microsoft, $1000 for a month-long engagement. I started to notice people were saying yes to this offering VERY fast.
In addition, I was really taking time to build out my offering and new consulting package. Focusing on helping my clients lock in product market fit and execute a consistent sales process. An extended version of what I did for my client from Microsoft.
For the first time I actually created an Avatar to serve coaches and consultants. I felt pretty dumb for not doing so before and niching down. Everything started to make sense, like a circuit board getting plugged in and lit up. Avatar>Offer>Outreach>Closing>Execution=Success.
During this time I was listening to Alex religiously (Offers again, Leads, podcasts, etc) and implemented new strategies, downloading information, and stacking my offer with more and more value.
Month 12-Present Scaling
We finally have reached the present day.
At the beginning of December, I began selling my new consulting offering, $10K for 3 months of service, and I would guarantee and ROI in 90 days or would continue to work for free until doing so, I have incredible conviction in what I do now. I was helping coaches and consultants define their avatar, repackage their offer, get into LinkedIn cold outreach with automation and give them scripts to close. Handling communication, providing consulting, and reviewing messaging/calls in between.
Within 5 days of going live. I closed my first client, payment was to be split over 3 months.
So far the process has been amazing, but VERY manual and time consuming. I started to build out deliverables that I could templatize for future clients and better educate at the same time. I realized I needed to help to continue scaling. In early Jan I hired a consultant for $6600 a quarter (2200/mo), who is doing something similar to myself, but about 3 years ahead. I have begun to productize my offering into a course to supplement learning between 1-1 calls with new clients. I have also learned a ton of new info and better ways to do things.
I got advice that if I met someone offering mentoring or coaching services who is ahead of me, has results to prove it, and I can afford it, pay them. Putting my ego and scarcity aside. This has absolutely been worth it.
I have also hired a setter and built him a robust repeatable process with help from my mentor and results have been looking promising, giving up control was a hurdle for me to get past for sure, but it has been worth it!
Also recently heard of IPGA (Info Product Growth Agency) and wrote it off as a shiny new object early December. Though after advice from my mentor to productize, it started to linger in my mind.
I also knew the power of communities and had heard of Skool, when Alex invested in it, I felt like it was a sign from God. I didn’t think it was the right time until my wife showed me an ad for Skool Games. I was signed up within 5 minutes on Jan 26th.
Overall
My exact revenue from my first year of full time entrepreneurship was $47,111.0, I do not have exact profit, but it is around $40,000. Biggest expenses were software and hourly costs from VAs
In terms of growth trajectory I plan to reach 6 figures this year and my next goal is $30K/months.
Takeaways
1. Talk to prospects immediately and interview them to find out what they actually need. It’s beyond silly I didn’t do this earlier. You need to ensure you have product market fit. Decide on your niche, and just start reaching out to people. Formulating your Avatar and verifying with prospects that the pains and goals are correct. Explaining your offering to see if it’s something they want. You can actually get your first few clients this way and set realistic expectations.
2) It takes time to build a product that truly sells. Scaling isn’t just about how fast you can embed fancy marketing strategies. I literally spent 9 months in the beginning trying to sell a mediocre service no one wanted. No amount of sales and marketing tactics can fix what is fundamentally a crappy offering. Only once I had a service that DESERVED to be scaled, did I begin to scale it. And once I did, things began to rapidly pick up.
3) Even with 3 years of sales experience, there was still so much I needed to learn and begin to feel competent in my abilities. For business owners out there who want to build a company in a space they don’t even personally understand, please know it’ll be an uphill battle. It’s better to choose one you already have experience in, enjoying the space is nice to have, and you have to make sure your market can afford your services.
4) I am now looking at ways to offload work and free up my own time. Anything that I felt didn’t require a ton of personalization or skill, I am working on automating it away with tech or delegating it to employees so I don’t have to do it anymore. Otherwise, I’ll be forever trading time for money. I need to be a CEO and work ON my business, not a VA working IN it.
5) Growth is exponential. My first 10 months I struggled to get by, but now I am looking to make more in the next 2 months than I did my entire last year. Growth is never linear.
6) Build your company and lifestyle super lean. My service always had at least 80% profit margins and above, they are now above 94%. My monthly living expenses have been quite high, averaging around $4-5K/month and during the middle of the year I had to get a loan that I am still paying it back, the lower you can get your monthly expenses the better, high expenses caused me a ton of stress. If you’re running a consultancy, agency, or SaaS, you can minimize a lot of the overhead as long as you’re building your business smart.
7) I do believe burnout is real, though I didn’t even begin to get close to it until these past 2 months of actually working. You can push yourself harder than you think, your body will adapt. I have costed myself thousands of dollars this past year by not doing the work when it needed to be done, just doing enough to “get by”. Keep your mind and body healthy, but push yourself, I never feel bad after a hard workout, but I do feel bad knowing I could have done more.
I hope you find value in my story, the good, the bad, and the ugly. Would love to hear your experiences or thoughts in the comments below!
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Garrett Miller
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How I Survived and Achieved my First $10K Month
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