Hey Teachers! It’s only September but I am already thinking about 2021. Partially because PowerSheets launch next month and I am super stoked to get my fresh goal planning journal and get started on dreaming up what’s next for me and for TSOT. But also because in a few short months Cody and I will be moving back home to the U.S. I’m excited and scared all at the same time.
Moving abroad has been a great experience for us for a variety of reasons. For me, though, one of the highlights of living in Germany has been the ability to work on TSOT full time. This was my dream while I was in the classroom but I knew it would not be possible to leave the classroom and pursue TSOT without my teaching income. Moving abroad answered that desire in a big way. It allowed me the freedom and flexibility to pursue owning my own business and helping teachers along the way without the impending pressure of having to provide a full time income for our family. I have consistently heard from God to not focus on the money while in Germany. In fact, if you’ve ever seen my Instagram stories where I am showing something on my computer screen, you’ve likely seen a white postcard with pink writing, now faded from the sun hitting it day after day, that reads “Kelly…the money doesn’t matter right now! Love, God” While I don’t really believe that every single day, I keep it right there front and center to remind me what’s true. God has given me this platform, this business, to serve teachers. It has given me a purpose, a creative outlet, and a drive while living in a foreign country without any friends or family or even a job I could actually work at here.
For that, I am super grateful. I have learned a lot in these last 24 months. I am currently reading a book called Holy Hustle and I keep being reminded that right now my job is to trust God, with open hands, about what my future looks like when we move home. Will TSOT still be my full time job when we move home? Will it be able to provide the finances needed for our family? Will I need or want to go back to the classroom? Will I pursue a different career altogether? It’s all up in the air.
Which is why, while I wait for God’s provision, I need your help! I’ve put together a survey that I would love for you to fill out. It’s got questions about your demographics, your likes and dislikes of the podcast and blogs. I ask about resources and services you would consider worthy of spending your hard-earned money on. I really just want all your feedback so I can figure out what kind of content I should be focusing on in 2021.
Because here’s the deal, in order for TSOT to continue operating at the level it currently is. That is…weekly blogs and podcasts, weekly emails, free resources, paid resources, courses, all of it. I have to focus on generating revenue. That’s just how the world works. Despite this being year 4 of TSOT and year 2 of working 20-30 hours a week on TSOT, I have yet to bring home a paycheck. Any money earned in the business is immediately put back into the business to pay for things like podcast editing, website fees, email service provider costs, growth and learning opportunities for me.
So, here is what I need from you! Would you mind taking 10 minutes to head over to thesimplyorganizedteacher.com/survey to complete the 2020 TSOT survey. This will help me as I start thinking through what 2021 will look like for TSOT. If, through the answers provided in the survey, God reveals to me that this chapter may be coming to a close, I’m happy to obey. Well…happy isn’t the right word. But I am okay with obeying. But I need your honest feedback to help me know what you like, what you don’t like, what you’re willing to pay for, what you’re not.
Season 7 of the podcast is launching soon. This season I am doing something a bit different. I am inviting listeners of the podcast to donate to the podcast, if they feel led.
Listening to a podcast is free. It costs you nothing other than a few minutes in listening to ads (or fumbling through your purse trying to push the skip ahead button to make it through the ads only to spend more time skipping forward, too far ahead, and having to jump back and still listening to the ad. I know some of you are nodding your head with me!) Each podcast episode costs me around $50-$75 to have edited. That’s not including paying me for my time to write the episode, record it, write the show notes or any of the other podcast related tasks. I know I could edit the podcast on my own and save money. But, just being honest, Simply Teach would have stopped after season 4. The editing is too time consuming and too tedious for me.
So, this season I am looking for sponsors for the podcast. If you are someone who listens to the podcast, reads the TSOT blog, or regularly consumes the free resources living on the TSOT website, I invite you to consider donating. You can do as little as a one time donation of $10 up to as much as your heart desires!
I have to be honest, it feels a bit weird asking for this. This is something I have tossed around in my head for months- sponsorships, letting my audience know that I can’t keep doing all I am doing. I constantly go back in forth- “no, you don’t want to sound like you’re asking for pity,” “that’s unprofessional, just suck it up.” and “you have to be honest.” “money is how the world works and people understand that.” I think I am realizing, even as I prepare this quick update episode, that maybe part of this trusting-God-in-the-future thing means laying down my pride and letting my audience know how they can help me. I hear from teachers almost weekly about how helpful the podcast is or how helpful a resource I’ve created was for them. I LOVE helping teachers. But it costs- a lot. Both in money and time. And I need help.
Here are three things you can do to help TSOT, and because I am TSOT- me.
- First, and most important, fill out the survey. Head over to thesimplyorganizedteacher.com/survey to do so. Leave honest feedback and let me know what you’d like to see moving forward.
- Next, if you feel led to donate, you can do so at thesimplyorganizedteacher.com/sponsor. I hope by now you and I have built a trusting relationship. All money received through donations will go to producing the podcast, and the podcast alone. I am hoping to raise $900 to cover the costs of season 7. Any donations raised beyond that will be used to fund TSOT operating expenses.
- Lastly, leave a rating and review. I know I ask this every episode and every podcaster asks this but it’s because it’s really important. And it costs you nothing more than a few seconds. Simply Teach can’t receive sponsorships or paid ads, taking the financial burden off me and you, without a minimum amount of downloads a month. Simply Teach is not there yet and ratings and reviews will help more teachers find the podcast, meaning more downloads, and more opportunity to monetize this free resource.
Also, just thought of this, but if you want to support TSOT but feel uncomfortable donating, you can also purchase a product or resource. Just head to thesimplyorganizedteacher.com/shop.
Thank you for your time. Thank you for listening to me spill my heart and mind out. Thank you to those of you who have supported TSOT through purchasing courses or products, left a rating or review, or even took time out of your busy day to send me a heartfelt message letting me know how much I have helped you. Those are the messages, the gifts from God, that remind me it’s okay to just focus on serving teachers right now, and that alone.
I’ll talk to you soon.