EP 201: Turning A Side Project Into Your Main Gig With Work Brighter Founder Brittany Berger

The Nitty-Gritty:

  • How Brittany Berger came up with the idea for the Work Brighter newsletter
  • How Work Brighter evolved as she continued to work her day job—and then as she struck out on her own
  • What her current vision for Work Brighter is and how it informs her growth strategy
  • Why Brittany chose to think of her company more like a software company than a content company

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A side business can be your main focus.

Mike McDerment founded Freshbooks—a company that now reportedly brings in over $50 million in revenue each year—because he saved over an invoice he was working on for his internet marketing consultancy.

But Mike didn’t quit his existing business to start a new one. He started building it on the side.

And well before Freshbooks started making, well, really any measurable amount of money per month, he figured out a way to devote 80% of his time to making that company and his solution for small business owners like him a reality.

He made the new company his top priority, even though it wasn’t paying his bills.

This probably seems pretty counterintuitive. Don’t you want to prioritize what’s making you money?

Sure, prioritize what’s making you money if it’s what you want to continue doing and has the potential to grow into the kind of company you really want to run.

But that wasn’t the case for Mike. He saw the potential of Freshbooks long before anyone else did. He knew that Freshbooks wasn’t just a great idea—it had the potential to far exceed the earning and impact potential of the business he was currently running.

Now, today’s show isn’t about Mike—but you can get the full scoop on what worked to get Freshbooks off the ground in the early days and what worked to reinvent it when they need to leap ahead of the market in Episode 152.

But Mike’s story is the perfect introduction to Brittany Berger‘s story.

You see, Brittany is all-in on the seed she’s planted, just like Mike. And, just like Mike, it’s not her primary source of revenue yet.

Yet, the seed she’s watering and tending to has the potential to grow into a big venture.

Brittany Berger is founder of Work Brighter, a digital media company that helps productive unicorns go beyond working smarter to a version of productivity that makes room for “unproductive” things like rest, self-care, and fun. Work Brighter currently publishes a weekly newsletter and hosts a membership community full of resources and templates.

One of the things that stood out to me most about our conversation was how clear-eyed Brittany was about her priorities for this growing company. While she’s still earning income as a content marketing consultant, Brittany knows that Work Brighter is her future. It’s her primary focus.

Brittany and I talk about about how Work Brighter got started, why she treats it more like a software business than a content business, and how she creates her weekly newsletter. We also talk about her business model and why she chose to focus on building monthly recurring revenue.

Now, let’s find out what works for Brittany Berger!

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