“The best thing about Zero to Launch was how it was laid out — it was great having a roadmap to follow.” — Paula Rizzo
“I was very disorganized at home. I missed deadlines, forgot appointments…”
Paula is an Emmy Award winning television producer for health segments on Fox News. Her job required her to always meet deadlines and be on top of things.
“Being a television producer, you have to be super organized. TV segments are always running. At any given moment, you have to know what’s coming up next and the exact deliverables to make it happen. Lists are key. I use them all the time to stay on track.”
Paula always uses lists in her job.
However, Paula’s life at home was different than her work life.
“At home, I wanted to be more laid back and ‘easy breezy.’ I didn’t want to use the same lists I use at my job because that would feel like work. So I was very disorganized at home. I missed deadlines, forgot appointments. It was like the opposite of my TV producer self.”
Paula knew this needed to change.
“I started to take the mindset I used as a producer into other areas of my life.”
And little by little, her life started to come together.
“I didn’t know what I had to offer that people wanted”
Paula knew that other people could benefit from her list approach to productivity.
“I wanted to show my technique to others so that they could be more efficient in life.”
Being a television producer for a major network gives you access to many media contacts. So she bounced around numerous ideas with her colleagues.
“A friend of mine, who was an author, told me, ‘If you ever want to write a book, start a blog first to see if you’re interested enough in the content.’ So that’s what I did.”
That’s how her site The List Producer was born.
“I discovered there were lots of people interested in using lists to be more productive in life. It was nice to see there was a community of people who wanted this content.”
Once Paula verified there was a demand for her skill and that she enjoyed writing about the content, she landed a book deal. Listful Thinking: Using Lists to Be More Productive, Successful and Less Stressed was released in January 2015.
Paula’s book attracted a community of people.
She wanted to turn all this success into a business, but she quickly discovered having a small community and a book wasn’t enough.
“I sent out emails 5 days a week, but the response was lukewarm. I couldn’t get people engaged. Plus, I had no idea what else I could sell beyond my first book. I didn’t know what I had to offer that people wanted.”
“I was looking for direction with my online business”
Paula discovered Ramit Sethi through Zero to Launch graduate Selena Soo.
“I’ve done a lot of TV segments with Selena and her clients. She has a great eye for super talented people. I really value her opinion.”
“I was looking for direction with my online business. I wanted someone to give me a list I could follow — specific steps that I could use to reach an end goal. For me, that was figuring out what product I could sell and then launching it.”
So when Zero to Launch was released, it seemed like a no brainer to sign up. She discovered it was a great roadmap for building a business.
“Each module builds on the next. It all really makes sense. All I had to do was make time to do the modules and do the homework. It was so easy to follow.”
Paula trusted the system and starting seeing everything come together.
“I stopped sending 5 emails a week and focused on sending 1 high quality email. It’s definitely not the case that more is better. People commented and asked more questions with the 1 email than I ever got before.”
This dialogue with her audience led her to a new product idea as well. She created her first course, Take Back Your Inbox, and later co-created her second course, Lights Camera Expert.
“I launched products, but there were many other benefits, too”
Paula was thrilled with the results from going through Zero to Launch.
“I needed all the steps to come out with my products. Zero to Launch really gave me a roadmap that I could follow.”
Total sales from these courses was $29,000. But money wasn’t the only benefit.
Results from Paula’s high profit, low cost online business.
“Now I understand how to do it again. I can keep replicating this success with other products I want to release. I can create bigger products and price them higher. When you think of it that way, it’s really invaluable to have this kind of knowledge.”
This mindset has changed the way Paula thinks about herself.
“I used to go to events and tell people about ‘my blog,’ or ‘my side project I was working on.’ Now, when I introduce myself to people at networking events, I’m unapologetic about being an entrepreneur. I tell them about my site, my book, my products.”
“Zero to Launch was a lot more than I thought it was going to be”
We brought Paula into the studio to share her story. Watch the full interview and discover:
- How Paula’s day job led to her first profitable business idea. (0:53)
- From side project to book deal — Writing a book is a serious undertaking. If it’s something you’d like to do, there’s a simple test to see if you’re up for the challenge. (2:17)
- The importance of having a system to follow. All you need to do is set aside a few hours a week, do the work, and you’ll be on your way to having a profitable online business. (3:42)
How to find your first profitable idea
As you just discovered, Paula’s first profitable idea came from the skills she used in her everyday job. That’s what most people don’t realize. There are people out there who would be happy to pay you for skills you already know how to do.