Kristin Ingram is the CEO of a digital media company. Also a Certified Public Account and college instructor, she wears many hats. Here’s her success story.
How do you define success?
Success is moving closer to that ideal version of myself every single day. As long as I have made some stride forward, I can count that day as a success. It can’t just be about the big things. It’s about the little things moving forward.
What does your business do?
I have three brands. My business provides educational content to accounting students, small business owners and fantasy fiction authors. I put my three businesses under one umbrella as Ingram Digital Media, Inc. in January 2017 and incorporated as an S corp.
I work with my husband Jeffery, a tech expert. Our brand works because I’ve found that all three groups struggle with the same things: time, organization, and learning the things they need to succeed.
Accounting in Focus: Started in 2014, this is a site for accounting students. The website receives 1.6 million visitors a year. It began when I made videos for my students and put them on YouTube. Other students found them and it took off. There’s a great need for free content, especially outside the U.S. I wrote the equivalent of two accounting textbooks and put them up on my website for free. Ads monetize the site and I’m putting together a funnel for that site.
Small Biz Life: Begun in 2015, this is a weekly free podcast for small business owners. Small Biz HQ is a branch off of this site and is a monthly subscription program where I’ll take a topic and delve into it more deeply. My husband’s a tech genius, and that combines well with my business background.
Gardul and the Worldbuilder’s Anvil Podcast: My husband Jeffery’s brand falls under this umbrella. He teaches people how to build fantasy worlds. His podcast about fantasy world building began over three years ago, and he has 5,000 downloads a month. Jeffery’s going to come out with a course soon. And his first novel will be out this year.
Is your home business based on something you already knew how to do or did you have to acquire new skills?
The YouTube videos were my first project. I found a format I liked in math videos one man created and studied those. I figured out what he was doing, but my first videos were terrible. They’re still up there though.
I’ve had to learn a lot to get to this point, but that’s cool because we can bring it all into Small Biz HQ. New skills so far include making videos, hosting a podcast, digital marketing, SEO, and funnels.
What do you think hinders people the most in business?
There’s lots of fear, and typically that fear manifests as You’re too busy, You’ve got too much going on, and there’s some imposter syndrome. People think I’m not good enough. Nobody’s going to listen to me. Everybody has those fears. The best thing you can do is take the next step. You prove fear wrong and eventually fear will get much quieter.
What’s the best thing you did? What’s the worst?
The best thing I did was start. I do know though that the worst thing I did was wait. I waited too long to put out products for Accounting In Focus. The ad revenue is certainly nice on the website, but we can do more.
One problem I’ve seen with businesses is that the owner creates things in a vacuum and puts them out there. Instead, create a survey and talk about Hey, I’m doing this. Is this something you’d be interested in? Try to get some feedback first.
What business struggles have you had and did you overcome them? Did you ever fail and have to get back up?
The first product I created for Accounting in Focus was a tax product for small businesses. We didn’t do research. I launched and had one sale which I refunded. It turned out okay because the buyer is one of our HQ members and super supportive of what we do. The problem was that we didn’t ask. People didn’t want to buy a course like this.
How do you see your future?
We’ll continue growing these three companies and growing the brands as our avatar grows. We want to keep growing the value ladder, especially with the college students. We want to help them find jobs or open an accounting firm. We’re looking at how we can help so we have a lifelong customer.
We’re also rolling out a one-on-one coaching program for small businesses that begins with a business review. If that goes well and we sell that out, we’ll start a group mastermind program for business owners who want to go to the next level.
What would your advice be to either a new or struggling home businessperson?
I would surround myself with a community because there’s so much that you don’t know that you don’t know when you start a business. One of the reasons we started HQ is that we knew a lot of businesses couldn’t afford to have a CPA or a tech company on retainer. For $49 a month, subscribers get access to us and access to other business owners. We interact inside a private FB group and host weekly live calls in the member’s area. Plus, when you join, you get access to the archives.
Are you on a journey toward your own success story?