Welcome to the latest installment of the QuickBooks Ask the Expert Series. In this series, we take a deep dive into the minds of small business owners and knowledgeable business advisors.
My name is Charlie, and I’m a serial entrepreneur, content creator, and investor. I graduated from UCLA with a degree in psychobiology, and started doing tons of side hustles until I found social media. Once I decided to go all-in on making videos online, I started to see traction. From there, I was able to scale up that to the multi-7-figure business that I have today.
But enough about me; I want to talk about Stephanee Beggs, a creator and entrepreneur who is absolutely crushing it in the digital products space. She is even featured on the 30 under 30 list in the Education category!
Stephanee’s main business is RNExplained, an educational company that provides college students in the medical field with tons of useful tips and tricks. Her business generates over $100K per month in passive income.
For this installment of the QuickBooks Ask the Expert Series, I asked her about her social media, her business, and how she approaches entrepreneurship.
What is her business?
Stephanee runs a business with two main branches: she uses social media to teach nursing students, and then sells online everything she teaches in the form of study sheets—a tangible product that they can use to succeed in their academic exams. She helps tons of nursing students every day with their exams.
How much does her business make per year?
Stephanee reports that her online business makes roughly $1.2 million per year with over 90% profit margins. The reason she’s able to keep most of the profit is that her product is primarily digital, meaning the only expense she has is the cost of materials to make the books she sells.
Selling digital products is a great way to generate passive income, due to low fulfillment and startup costs. Additionally, with digital products, you can create evergreen listings that can generate passive income for a long time. I do this with my social media videos, creating evergreen and searchable videos that continue to get views for a long time, sometimes 1–2 years or more. That’s the power of selling a timeless digital product: all you have to do is make your product once, and then it’s just a question of continuing to market that product.
How can younger entrepreneurs reach success like you have?
The three main things you need to do are:
- Pick a niche
- Develop a good product in that industry
- Go all-in on your vision (As Stephanee likes to say, you should work “25/8” as an entrepreneur.)
That’s it! Pretty simple, but great advice for those that tend to overthink the steps to becoming successful.
I’m always telling new entrepreneurs to start off focusing only on one group of people that they can relate to and help. You can charge more when you offer specialized services. Plus, it’s a lot easier to market your product when you’re targeting such a specific audience.
What is something successful entrepreneurs should do every single day?
Stephanee’s biggest piece of advice is to communicate with your audience. If you’re not communicating with them, you’re not developing the relationships you need to market, sell, and build a reputation.
Every content creator or personal brand should heed this advice, if they aren’t putting it into practice already. This is a huge one for me, as well. When my clothing company failed and I lost over $20,000 that I had personally invested, I learned a huge lesson about marketing, since a lack of marketing was the primary reason my business failed. I swore to never make that mistake again.
How do you plan on scaling your business moving forward?
Stephanee is looking to expand her team so that she can start posting more content on social media platforms. Building out a team can be a good move for entrepreneurs looking to scale their businesses, because it allows them to delegate tasks, freeing up time that they can reinvest into the other areas of the business that need attention.
If you’re new to entrepreneurship and your company is growing faster than you can handle, I recommend finding ways to hire staff in order to buy yourself more time. Even though it costs money, you can buy back precious time that might otherwise be sub-optimized, freeing you up to: take courses, attend networking events, and find mentors to teach you invaluable lessons. One of the most affordable investments you can make is to buy a book. When you read a book written by someone successful, it’s like diving into their thought processes for just a few bucks.
I encourage you to take massive action on the things you’ve read here today and not be too worried about the details. I started my social media channels not knowing they would grow to a multimillion-dollar business, and I’ve heard plenty of other stories of highly successful entrepreneurs who didn’t worry about having everything perfect before they started.
So go out there, invest in yourself, start that online business that you've been dreaming about. Use QuickBooks to manage your business finances, communicate with your audience, build out a team, and TAKE ACTION.