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Productivity Redefined: How Stepping Away From Work Changed Everything With Marissa RomeroI am super excited because we have one of the top YouTube experts on our show. Not only is she a top YouTube expert, she is also incredible at building YouTube channels and strong followings and has a creative unique method behind the scenes she’s going to share a little bit about with us. Marissa Romero, we’re so honored to have you. Welcome to the show. Thank you so much. It’s an honor to be here and drop an hour’s worth of value to your audience. I cannot wait to dive in but thank you so much for having me on the show. I’m excited about what we got. We are so excited to have you. Before we dive in, though, I have a question. Do you mind giving our audience a little bit of background on you and how you got to where you are now and what you’re working on? That’s a great place to start. Let’s see if we have to talk about the Cliff Notes version of my journey. I’ll back up to 2016, the year I figured out when I wanted to be or that I could be an entrepreneur. That whole year I was sparked by wanting to figure out a way to travel the world and make money because I took a trip to Europe. That trip changed my whole entire life. I was like, “Europeans have a completely different way of doing work, doing business and a different mindset.” When I went back to the US, it was a short 21-day trip I took of my family. At that time, I was a civil engineer. That was my first career. I did that for seven years. When I went back, I was like, that’s when the whole like, “I can’t do this 9:00 to 5:00. I knew there wasn’t something else out there for me.” I had no clue what. Anyways, I ended up leaving that career. I took the leap of faith and I took it right after I had moved up and got to the bridge engineer position. I had gotten my Master’s, all these things. Everyone was like, “What are you doing? You are out of your mind.” I’m like, “I know. Isn’t it exciting?” I had all this confidence and I don’t know why I was so confident. Going into my journey, I first did eCommerce and I had three online drop shipping stores. Also, print on demand. I did that for my first year, my first attempt at entrepreneurship. On that journey, that first year, I racked up a whole entire bill of six-figure debt. I had the super shiny object syndrome. I was going after it, but I had no direction or no clue where I was going. I’m like, “This is insane.” It was crazy because, along the way, I was learning a ton of things like Facebook ads, branding, funnels and things. A year or so after I had left my career, I was like, “Now I’m going to take a step further and leave the US and sell all my things.” I downsized from a three-bedroom house to a suitcase, backpack, and handbag. I took a one-way trip to Thailand and that’s where everything real started. I got to Thailand and I’m like, “I have a ton of bills to pay.” Savings accounts were dwindling down. I’m like, “What’s going to happen? I have no clue.” Now we’re in April of 2018. I wanted to try YouTube. I had seen the potential on YouTube. I had dabbled with it and tried twice before but it didn’t work. In April, I was like, “This is do or die. I’m just going to post every single day for as long as I can and this is going to work.” I started doing that. About 30 to 40 days into doing that, I got my first commission of $33.50. I was like, “Holy crap. This is all I needed. This works. Keep going.” That was April. In June and July, I was monetized. In July, I made my first $1,000 commission from an affiliate program I was promoting. That’s where things started for me on YouTube. In general, I knew I loved creating. I love making video. I enjoy scripting a video and producing it and seeing the final product. That’s where YouTube all started for me. Now you’re focused solely on YouTube. Yes. That was your passion. You went to Thailand, you sold it all, didn’t know what you were going to do, then decided you’d love to create content and everything and the realm came about what you’re doing now. It’s evolved. Let me tell your audience, for everyone who’s reading, I have been through everything there is to be through when it comes to YouTube. I’ve had extreme haters. The worst kind of haters, I’ve had them. I’ve had people make embarrassing videos about me. My channel has been hacked and deleted. It was hacked and deleted at the time when I had 91,000 subscribers. I’ve gotten it back. It’s been ups and downs. It’s crazy. Everything that you think could happen to a YouTube channel or whatever, I’ve experienced it. That’s something I look back. Even though those were extremely hard times, I’m so glad I have them because I’m able to share with other business owners on the platform and other YouTubers like, “You can overcome this no matter how low it feels or no matter how your analytics dip and all these things.” That makes my story even extra interesting and the fact I can speak about this probably here now. I decided to leave my main channel because I was so frustrated and now I’m back. No matter how low your analytics dip, you can overcome this. Click To Tweet You decided to leave your original channel? How many followers did you have on that? At the time, I had 212,000 subscribers on the channel. I decided to leave it and start a brand new one. At the moment, I do operate two channels. I can talk about why I decided to leave or we could touch on that later because I know I was trying to answer the question like what am I doing now? Let me know which you prefer first. No, continue going on the YouTube path. Why I left? Yeah. Why you left maybe and you opened another one? Basically, 2020, 2021 and the beginning of 2022, I was feeling very pigeonholed by my channel. Meaning the algorithm establishes your channel with certain topics that go viral or convert on the channel. Guaranteed when you make a video with this type of title, it does well for the channel. The habit I got into was, if I wanted to spark some virality, if I wanted to spark some subscribers. I would make heavy make money online topics. There were certain videos that would do extremely well and when I had wanted to post about other things, it would tank. That would frustrate me so much. For about a year and a half, probably even two, I was starting to get extreme burnout on the topics that I was talking about, which are making money online, beginner, passive income this, side hustle this and I was like, “I cannot talk about this anymore.” Backing up to when I first got started, it was more of a balance for me because on the channel at that time, I had more of variety. I was documenting the online marketing and the business growth stuff, but I was also making fun videos like digital nomad videos. In 2019 alone, my now husband, we met in Medellín, Colombia back in 2018. We were dating, but in 2019 alone, we must have had twelve different Airbnb’s. We’ve moved to six different cities. We were nomads for real. I loved documenting about places I’d been to, tips for traveling, online business and doing that while you’re on the move and how to have a YouTube studio while on the move. It’s stuff that fulfilled my curiosity and I had a passion about sharing. There came a point when I stopped diversifying the topics because I got addicted to the views that would go viral and the videos. What I did, in my opinion, was I pigeonholed myself so much that now when I tried to post anything else and I mean anything else, it would just not do well. It would make me feel bad about myself. I know any creator reading this knows what I’m talking about. When you put your heart and soul and creativity into a video and it gets a 10 out of 10 on the YouTube analytics or dives tanks or whatever. Anyways, all of that and adding up to the frustration in 2021 and 2022 and the demand from sponsors, from my audience for me to make one type of video. It dug at me. I’m like, “I can’t do this anymore.” At the same time, you add in the factor that I had become a new mother and I was like, “I don’t want to exist like this.” When you have your first child, it changes everything. I’m like, “I’m going to start over.” That’s what the point where I got at the end of 2022. I’m like, “I’m completely removing myself. I’m leaving this channel and starting a new one.” Good for you. Now with your new channel, are you going to try to have a lot more diversity like you used to have that you enjoy doing? Now on the new channel, that one’s called Subscribers to Sales. That new channel, first off, it’s not just me. It’s my team and I creating on that channel. There’s me, another creator named Dawn and there’s our operations manager, Elizabeth. All three of us are creating, which is so refreshing because we all get to come up with titles together and come up with what we want to do together. The whole vision of that channel is not only to establish business owners but establish YouTube creators, basically scale their efforts, systemize and also build a YouTube channel that supports their dream business and not the other way around so that they’re able to not work so hard and work less. We talk about hiring team support. The whole vision is for people to create in peace, create peacefully and also profit sustainably on that channel. There’s a way bigger variety of diverse topics on there. We have a lot of business topics but also things that, in regards to hiring a team, a YouTube team, operations, systemizing, all these things. The ideas for that channel and the topics came about because I saw a gap in the market, like a gap in the education with no one teaching this. Everyone’s teaching how to make more money, how to go viral on YouTube. Nobody’s teaching what you’re teaching. I can tell you that. I’ve never seen anyone teaching what you’re teaching. It’s so important because here’s the thing. Somewhere in 2021, my channel was booming and things were doing well financially for the business, but I was losing my mind. I was working 60 hours a week. I would feel bad if I didn’t work on weekends. I felt like I had no control. I had no clue what was going on. The projects were half finished. I couldn’t keep up with tasks and all this stuff. I’m like, “Where’s the help? Where are the courses to help me with my going crazy and what to do?” I had no clue who to hire. Going through that and also having to prepare myself for maternity leave, I’m like, “I know that there are millions of other creators out there going through the same thing that are like, ‘I don’t know what to do.’ They don’t know they need an operations manager. They don’t know that they need to outsource the tasks and outsourcing the progress of different projects to somebody else,” because that was consuming so much of my time on top of all the other things that I had to do. It was a big lesson and that’s why we wanted to talk about this and spread the mess message on that channel. Working harder, working longer does not equal achieving your biggest and greatest revenue goals. In fact, it’s the opposite and working less. That’s a whole other topic. That’s our goal with the Subscribers to Sales channel. You’ll get a great education about everything like YouTube business and all that on that channel. For our readers, they need to go to this page. Subscribers to Sales. All the information that we’ve been discussing so far, you can go to FullerWalletMedia.com/marissablueprint because she’s got some incredible things she’s going to be giving away. We’ll dive into more on that later but go subscribe to her channel now. Check it out and don’t forget. Digging further, you created this channel. I’m excited. This is a new channel. What are your future plans now? Now that you’ve launched the new channel, what’s your next six months look like? Does it look different than your last six months of running it by yourself and pulling your hair out? I’ve been there. They call that Julie Syndrome. I’m operating both my main channel, the Marissa Romero Channel, and I’m a creator for Subscribers to Sales. The vibe on the Marissa Romero channel will be different because, at the recording of this episode, I relaunched that channel. The vibe is going to be different. It’s going to be helping those who identify as high-achieving entrepreneur. It’s going to help you with all kinds of topics. Higher level lessons that I’ve learned throughout my journey that I can’t share on the Subscribers to Sales channel. Things for example, about dealing with being a mom and business, traveling overseas with your online business and how I manage it all, how I’m saving twenty hours a week with these productivity hacks, my views on partnership and dealing with a partnership that went South and why you should never do a 50/50 partnership. Things like lessons learned. That’s the view and the vision now for that channel. It’s going to be extremely valuable content but a completely different vibe from the make money online and the beginner stuff. I love that, though. Even when you mentioned the traveling and all of those things alone, that stuff is exciting. Melanie and I look all the time at different places, like, “Where should we look at going next or what should we look at doing next?” My husband and I do the same thing. Look at it. We’re in a similar position, like you said, we killed ourselves building a life and not enjoying it. We’re trying to now build the business around the lifestyle so we can enjoy it more. This is similar to what you were saying earlier, which a lot of people don’t even grasp, especially as women. I’m so honored to have you on as a woman entrepreneur because it’s important that other women know that there are other women out there like me, you and Melanie and moms and running all these things behind the scenes that nobody sees behind the scenes. It happens. Becoming a mom, on that topic, I won’t rabbit hole, but it’s like a whole other element to our lives and our work is important. The whole goal of where we’re going now is we want to spread the message on like, “You can scale. You can have a YouTube channel and a business that’s profitable and sustainable. You can scale to 6 figures, mid-6 figures or 7 figures.” Plus, we’ve had clients do it, but also, how could we do that while at the same time bringing your work hours down? That’s our whole goal. To do that, it’s not about the marketing. You can have a YouTube channel and a profitable and sustainable business. You can scale to six figures, mid-six figures, or seven figures. Click To Tweet It is, but that’s not the only component. It’s about the strong systems that you’re building along the way. It’s about getting a grip on your operations. It’s about hiring the proper team support. Our goal is to spread that awareness. Specifically, what we’re focusing on is amplifying the message of all the creators out there, how you can get what we call a high-performance team behind your channel. What this is, it’s not like a whole team of ten people. It’s what the high-performance team. We’d define it as a video editor and also a channel manager. Those two people and you, it’s a three-person team, like you as a YouTube creator. That is what makes the channel go. To have a successful YouTube channel, there are so many different things involved with pre-opt optimization, post-optimization, video production and all of that. All of these things are important, but they do not need to be done by you. The business owner and YouTube creator. That is our next step, spreading this awareness of like, “The sooner you get this team on board, the better.” We look at it as the growth machine, the sales machine behind the channel, because they’re the ones implementing the growth strategies 24/7 while you’re not around. They’re helping with keeping the community engaged and the community tab and all kinds of stuff. A big mindset shift for those that are maybe getting going from that solopreneur phase, wanting to like, “I need to start stepping into the CEO shoes that I know I should be,” a big mindset shift is hiring. People holding on to doing things for way too long when in fact, it’s costing, in reality, tens and thousands of dollars a year for you to do the work when you can outsource this for much cheaper and have everyone working in your own of genius. Your job as a creator is to make epic content. How can you have profit-driven videos like funneling them into your websites and your funnels and having the team take care of literally all the rest, the calendar, the video projects, the editing, all the optimization and the description, the tags and all that? It’s important but doesn’t need to be done by you. I love the sound of that. It doesn’t have to be done by me or Melanie. That’s our goal. It’s to spread awareness about that. My team and I got done creating whole new modules and curricula on how to train this type of team because no one is talking about this. We go on YouTube, we look up how to have more viralness or how to improve our clickthrough rate for our thumbnails. The information’s out there and we know what to do. Even things like A/B split testing thumbnails. An advanced strategy that should be done all the time, but it’s like, “I don’t have time to make five different thumbnails and split test them.” It’s important because split testing a thumbnail could be the difference from a video that’s a year old getting no views, 10 views a month to getting 10,000 views a month from the switch of a thumbnail. It’s crazy. The smallest little thing can make the biggest little difference. I got to ask you, as a woman entrepreneur, is there any one book that you’ve read that has stuck out to you the most or that you would recommend for other possible women entrepreneurs or entrepreneurs in general? This one, I would say, is pretty geared for women. It’s called Do Less. I’m looking at my Audible, but it’s by Kate Northrup. It’s basically why you need to be doing way less and how to optimize your month every single month to when you go hard, when you have that masculine energy, when you turn tune into the feminine energy, how to optimize your whole work schedule with your menstrual cycle and all these things. The importance of working less and how it is a mindset shift to you got to believe that you deserve to work less. It’s an identity shift because before, you could not tell me that I could work a ten-hour workweek. I would have melted to the ground. Marissa, before, you couldn’t tell me that. I thought I had to work seven days a week to the point of killing myself, to the point of like health issues. I thought that was the only way anyone I knew would be successful, is to kill yourself seven days a week. Until the wee hours of the night, waking up when it’s dark out, as a mom still trying to show up, which I could say I probably missed out on more than I should have as a parent by doing that for years. It’s important. I love that you’ve focused on that and pointed on that. As women, it’s very important we take care of ourselves and realize that we can have businesses and can be successful and don’t have to kill ourselves doing it. I identify with that so much. I used to think I have to work as hard as my team. If anyone on my team is working, whatever time, I have to be working. I had to work harder than the men. I felt like I always had to work double harder than the men to prove my worth, if that makes sense. Now, are you working less? Are you taking weekends off? I am. At first, it was weird and now I’m loving it. I’m booking stuff every weekend and my husband came in and he is like, “I’ve been meditating this morning.” I’m like, “Yeah?” He is like, “I like I enjoy doing all these things, but you’ve booked like five things for us.” I’m like, “Yeah?” He is like, “Are you sure we can do this?” I was like, “Yeah? If I couldn’t have booked it, I wouldn’t have done it.” I’m taking weekends off now and he’s blown away because I’m booking things and he is like, “Are you serious? Are you sure we can leave?” I’m like, “Yes, I’ll bring my computer if it’s urgent.” He was so used to it because I’d never be home. I was traveling for the last few years, so I was gone most of the year. At least one full week or 2 to 3 a month every single month for several years. It’s like I am taking advantage of it. Ask Melanie, I am like, “What can we do next? I want to do this.” We’re inviting people over more. I was a total homebody and now we’re inviting people over and getting to know the neighbors. I’m loving it. You deserve it. A breath of fresh air to hang out with someone and be in the conversation and genuinely be in the conversation because my mind isn’t running, doing 9,000 other things that I have to get back to. Your brain needs rest as much as your body. Based on science alone, Parkinson’s Law. I talk about this in the blueprint too. Parkinson’s Law, yes, but because that’s about productivity. Also, what I wanted to mention was the Law of Diminishing Returns. Once I investigated this, it’s like, the Law of Diminishing Returns tells us that at a certain point of hours worked or your input, your output at a certain point starts to go down or it starts to diminish. The whole goal is for you to be operating at your optimal rate. Let’s say your output is four hours a day. That’s going to be where you have your maximum output because once you get to work six hours a day, it’s like, “The output is a little bit more but not that much more.” Officially, your output is no longer output. It’s diminishing. I’m surprised I even respond and I see responses. I’m like, “Why did I even respond after eighteen hours?” The thing about not only having strong team support and decreasing your hours way less is important because of that. Not only because of that, it’s also because life happens to us. For me, this whole movement, when wanting to teach all this was inspired by my maternity leave because, as business owners, it’s like we don’t have maternity leaves. We have to create one and we’re like, “How do we create one?” It’s intimidating and scary. I was extremely anxious thinking about how I would have to be gone for three months because good female friends were also pregnant at the same time as me. They’re like, “Marissa, I don’t care. You need to commit now to taking three months off. You are going to need it.” They were right. All women need at least six months off when they give birth, but that’s another story. When I left, I left. I was gone. No Slack. No nothing. Once I came back and looked at my books, I was like, “We profited 30% every single month while I was gone. That’s outstanding.” It completely shifted the way I thought about everything. Once I came back, I was working ten hours max a week. What I noticed was when I was working, I was way more focused. My productivity was through the roof. I let go. I let go and relinquished control and I needed that because if that had never happened, I’d probably still be working 60-hour weeks thinking that was the okay thing to do. The normal thing to do. What is normal? Do you know what I mean? We don’t even know what is normal. Who knows? True. Melanie’s been talking so much this whole time, I haven’t been able to get a word in edgewise. I can’t help but sit back and absorb it all because it truly is fascinating that you went on maternity leave for three months and profited the way that you did. That changed and that was a huge shift in your business. Sometimes it shows that we have to step away. At any given point in time, it’s like we’ll have to step away because life happens. We need to take care of people in our family or we get sick. Things happen. The faster you’re implementing systems, team support and the right scalable structures to prepare yourself to be removed from your business, that’s the beauty of what you’re building. To be able to have that freedom to take a sabbatical, to take a month off, to take August and December completely off and to plan for that in the beginning of the year. For our readers, everything we reviewed with Marissa is going to be at FullerWalletMedia.com/marissablueprint. Marissa, before we close out, do you have any final words for our readers, tips, or feedback you’d like to leave? I think what I would like to leave people with is to take scared action and to keep diving as much as possible into the unknown because that’s what it has been for me. It’s being scared all the time and going after a completely new vision and shifting things so many times. It has been so scary, but when you connect with your vision, your purpose and your passions and you go after it, it’s a beautiful thing. If you’re in a place where it feels unknown, you’re in an extremely great spot. At least for me, all the time when things have felt unknown or I don’t know how I’m going to get out of this, something beautiful is right around the corner. Take scared action and keep diving as much as possible into the unknown. Click To Tweet That is the perfect thing to close out with. I couldn’t have said it better. Thank you so much. Thank you. It’s been an honor having you on our show. Thank you so much. I hope you guys got a ton of value. As I mentioned, I’m on YouTube, Marisa Romero, my main channel and also Subscribers to Sales. You can find me there and also my team and we talk more about all these topics. Thank you so much for having me. It was a pleasure. Thank you.