Why I Almost Quit My Business (Warning: Shade Inside)


  Listen, let me warn you now. There may be some curses up in here, some trap music references and a whole lot of honesty around what the online business industry has become. I was frustrated and quite frankly over it. And I feel that many of you may be feeling the same way, too. If you aren’t interested in reading the real, skip to the bottom so you can find out what I have coming for you in 2016. If you want all the tea, keep reading.

Guess what: we all aren't going to have 6 or 7-figure businesses. We all aren't going to be full-time entrepreneurs, but I've learned to make a passive income while working full-time. I haven’t hacked every single aspect of business to make 6 figures, but the few thousand dollars of extra income I made each month allowed me to live comfortably, to travel every single month last year (pictures here), to pick up and move to Atlanta, and to be able to do what I want cause I'm popping! (Have y'all heard that Drake/Future song?)  Anywho, that was the same income that kept me from freaking out when I was laid off from my job today. The startup that I work for isn’t doing that well and unless a miracle happens, Feb. 29 will be my last day. How ironic that I will have to take the leap into full-time entrepreneurship on the leap day in a leap year. I see what you did there, God. Boom. Yes. It got super freaking real for me, but you know what? I am happy and relieved. I could spend more time doing the things that I love at my own pace.  Since I have gotten this passive income thing down, I can only imagine what will happen when I’m working on it full-time.

[Tweet "What @EmmelieDeLaCruz plans to do now that she’s been laid off.."]

Before we start the Emmelie pity party, let me tell you why this is actually a blessing is disguise. I have been so annoyed that everybody wants to have a $497 dollar course to teach you how to do [any business or marketing task here] in [ridiculous amount of time]. You basically teach yourself how to do the damn thing anyway. (There are a handful of coaches and infopreneurs out there that have mastered teaching courses like Regina, but she’s basically a unicorn.) I have invested thousands of dollars in courses and masterclasses and was highly underwhelmed. I have taken courses that talk about why copy is important and the fact that I need a landing page. However, it took me a while and a lot of wasted money to teach myself how to actually make a landing page and even longer to find a copywriter to write the copy for it. By the time I figure shxt out, I’m too exhausted to do whatever it is I was promoting with the landing page in the first place. Many of the products and classes I have invested in focus on the what and the why, but never the how. 

[Tweet "This is for anyone who has ever wasted time and money on course after course."]

I was so freaking over it last year. I was so done in early 2015, that I quit. The Branding Muse blog went library quiet because I was having a hard time figuring out where I fit in the world of 6-figure business coaches and blogging gurus. After tuning out the noise flooding my timeline and IG feed, I decided to follow my intuition last August. If everyone is teaching me how to grow my online business, who the hell is actually doing the work? I rebranded the site to be more focused on providing actual services like brand audits and brand development, while building #HustleHackCo which focuses on the tools and shortcuts to better business. If you are going to go the DIY route, I want to make sure you are spending DIY money - aka less than $50. 

So if you want a coach (and I use that term loosely)  that is going to “teach” you how to make millions, then I’m not it and that’s ok. (and just so we’re clear, no coach can ever teach you that. There are way too many intangibles, but that’s a topic for another day.) What I can show you are REALISTIC strategies for busy people who want to market their business even with a trillion other things going on. I’m not going to give you an expensive-ass self-guided course and wish you the best. As your personal branding mentor, my job is to give you baby steps each week and each month to move you towards progressing into what you were really called to do. And if you don’t want those steps, I’m also here to do it for you. (Check out my Hire Me page.)

How so?  Well for those of you who don’t know, I started my side hustle at 20, and I was always learning and going through a lot of trial and error. Those experiments with different tools, processes, courses and coaches are what built the Hustle Hack community. Everything I now know after 5 years, I can share with you so you don't make the same mistakes or waste as much time confused. You deserve to make a living and secure your own destiny. So when you do leave your job or are put in an uncomfortable position like being laid off, you have no worries.

I’m not perfect. I don’t have it all together. I have a small Twitter and Instagram following, but it has gotten me clients. I have a modest 10k (and growing) people who visit my blog each month, but I’m still connecting and landing brand partnerships. I don’t have 20K launches - shxt, I get excited if I make 2K in a launch - but I’m passionate about making information accessible to the people who need it most: the newbies, the non-tech savvy, the multi-passionate, the hustlers. A lot of y'all are on the verge of doing something great, but you're too scared and too busy to start. That’s where I come in.

So what does this mean for you?

I’m switching things up a bit. Now that I have more time on my hands to create useful and easy to follow content (Hello, "unemployment!"), I’m leveling up. Introducing #HustleHackCo: part academy + support group + resource library for the side hustler or newbie entrepreneur who want a more guided experience on marketing their biz + building their brand. I have been growing and marketing brands for years. It’s time to take my degree from the top communications school in the country (shoutout to Newhouse!) and  tools + tips that I used daily in corporate America, to support solopreneurs, small businesses, and passion projects. Click here to learn more.