So, I have some BIG news…
I am going to open enrollment for each of my online courses one last time (on December 14th)… and then, I intend to never sell these courses again.
Or, in other words:
After this final enrollment, I am quitting online courses.
(And don’t worry. If you already invested in one of my courses, you won’t lose access. The website will still live on. I’m just done selling them after one final enrollment period).
“Why? ARE YOU CRAZY!?!?!”
I’m not crazy.
“IS THIS A SCAM? A TRICK? A GIMMICK?”
“OKAY TELL ME EVERYTHING.”
Here’s the full story…
The Golden Years
I started Social Triggers in 2011.
I had the worst haircut.
The worst handwriting.
And the worst video quality…
…but things still went great.
I had no idea how I planned to make money, but I didn’t care. I just liked sharing cool content, psychology research, and applying it directly to online business.
I wrote. I had a marketing podcast before podcasting was cool. And I filmed YouTube videos.
And I built a following pretty damn fast. Millions of visitors. Almost a half a million email subscribers. And I was making millions of dollars.
It was so strange, too. I grew up poor. My dad was in jail most of my life. My mom was on welfare. And I was surrounded by drug addicts who would steal money from my mom. Things were pretty bad.
And now, I was an “internet guru” teaching other businesses how to start and grow their business. And it was working. Like crazy.
It was the golden years for Social Triggers…
And Then Something Went Wrong In 2015…
I didn’t spot it at the time.
However, look at the facts:
I published a video on YouTube in September 2015, and then I never published one until March 2017 – almost a 2 year hiatus.
I released this infographic on Facebook in November 2015. It went super viral. People ended up stealing it and pretending like they made it, but this is literally how I felt at the time… even when business was going great.
And even though 2016 went on to become my best year in business, I felt more and more burnt out.
I Felt Burnt Out – BAD
I finally realized I was suffering from burn out, and I knew I needed to do something about it.
So, I started experimenting with new business ideas and business models.
1. I experimented with a social skills course, and even though I loved teaching it, I didn’t thinK I could scale it. So I killed the project.
2. I launched a fitness coaching program. This was out of left field, of course, especially for me, so I partnered with a fitness expert to deliver it. This also went well, but I didn’t think I would find that business interesting, either.
3. I began researching physical product businesses. I talked to the owner of a childrens’ toy company, and thought about partnering up with them to bring children toys to market. I also talked to an apparel company and thought about marketing clothing.
4. I launched a high end mastermind where successful business owners paid $25,000 to join for 6 months for both business advice and coaching.
5. I hired a new videographer to create videos, and then proceeded to make… almost no videos.
Even though this sounds like I was all over the place, I can tell you that, it’s because I was all over the place. I was experimenting, and trying to find something else I could do here at Social Triggers that would alleviate the burnout.
None of it worked.
And that’s when I realized it’s because Social Triggers was a great business…
…but I didn’t understand WHY I was doing it.
Sure, I enjoyed helping business owners, and watching them get results is absolutely amazing, but I felt myself wanting to do something bigger. Something more important. Something that could impact more people, in more ways.
And quite frankly, build something that could become a huge business that regular people would know about.
But Then I Got Lucky After One Conversation…
So, there I was. It was the end of summer of 2017, and I was telling my friend about my problems at his lake-house in Connecticut.
And he said, “So, let’s start a new company. I’ve been thinking about getting into the health and wellness space. You interested?”
“But I don’t have an audience in that space, but I have an idea. I’ve been talking to another friend about doing this for years, and maybe now is the time to do it.”
So, I called her up, and within about 2 weeks, I co-founded a new company called Truvani, where we sell health and wellness products (like protein powder, marine collagen, turmeric, bone broth, etc).
We kept the company lean, at first.
We had a crazy idea to use high quality ingredients in our products… it’s crazy because even the companies who say they use high quality ingredients had lower standards than we had… and I wasn’t sure if it would work out.
But still, by November 2017, we pre-launched our first product – a turmeric supplement. And things went very well. So well, in fact, that I finally felt alive again.
LOOK HOW MUCH FUN I WAS HAVING:
First, I truly believed in our mission – creating high quality supplements, with real food ingredients.
Second, the challenges associated with a physical product business were exciting.
And finally, I felt like I had some new things to talk about for Social Triggers.
So, I Did Something Even Crazier…
I started 2018 strong. I started a daily vlog where I wanted to take people “behind the scenes” of my daily life of running 3 separate companies – Social Triggers, Zippy Courses, and Truvani.
Like I didn’t have enough on my plate already, but whatever. I jumped and planned to figure it out as I went along for the ride.
I published one video every single day. There was no real “purpose” behind the video a day ordeal other than the fact that I’ve always been a creative at heart and felt like I had something to say.
We did cool videos, too.
I played chess.
I taught random business and life lessons from the park.
I told the story of the Empire State building being built in a year.
But all the projects began to add up. It was too much work.
It Became Too Much – And Then I Had To Get Honest
When we began shipping our first Truvani product, and launched it to the world, I realized something…
Starting a business like Truvani was invigorating. I was doing something that I believed mattered for the world. And I was having a lot of fun doing it.
…but the work from all of my businesses began to pile up.
I had a daily vlog. Social Triggers. Zippy Courses. Truvani.
And it all came to a head when we started shipping our first product from Truvani at the end of February 2018.
We began shipping it, and launched it again, and everything went so well, that I was left thinking, “Wait a second. Truvani has some real legs here. Maybe I need to focus on this 100%.”
And the work was becoming TOO MUCH, but I thought I could handle it.
And Then I Got HUGE News
I found out I was having a baby.
So, there I was.
I had Social Triggers, Zippy Courses, Truvani, a Daily Vlog, and a new baby on the way.
I had to get real.
I quit vlogging on the drop of a hat. I didn’t have the time, and something had to give.
And then I thought about axing Social Triggers, as an online course business, and just focus on Zippy Courses and Truvani.
…but would I really do that?
My personal brand.
Would I really just walk away?
I wasn’t so sure.
Social Triggers was my baby. And now I would be going dark. I’d disappear from the public eye, and go “behind the scenes” in a different company.
I was still an owner. A co-founder. But I wouldn’t be the Derek Halpern that everyone knew and loved (and maybe hated).
I Deliberated About This Decision FOR MONTHS
I loved Social Triggers, and I loved my new business. But things started going so well at Truvani, that the work kept piling up.
We launched our first product in February 2018. We launched another in May. Another in July. And we were changing peoples lives for the better around the world through this new company and our new products.
I slowly brought over all of my employees from the Social Triggers information business into my new company Truvani.
I stopped creating new content on a regular basis.
And to be truthful, my heart was all in on Truvani, and Zippy Courses, but I wasn’t ready to admit it to the public yet.
Then My Daughter Harper Was Born…
Her name is Harper Halpern.
She’s pretty cute, if I say so myself.
And I plan to dress her exactly how I dress.
Black sweat pants. Black t-shirt. Sparkling shoes.
She doesn’t fit in them yet, but I have them ready!
One of the things I believe in most is taking decisive action, and it’s an example I’d like to set my daughter as she gets older.
Winners don’t hem and haw. Winners pick a direction, and go in that direction.
…And it’s time that I do the same thing.
Social Triggers, as a publisher of online courses, will no longer exist.
I plan to take things back to the beginning.
I’ll publish content when I have something important to say, but I won’t be actively looking to turn everything into an online course.
I’ll just share cool content. Psychology research. And other stuff that I think you will find valuable. But I won’t be trying to sell the content.
You’ll get content with no strings attached.
So, while this may be Goodbye to online courses…
…You’ll quickly find that I still have a big mouth ;-).
If you’re on my email list, you’ll still get emails.
Just no more “online course sales” after this final sale.
If you want to learn more about the new company I co-founded, here’s the link.
If you want to see the “behind the scenes” of my new life…
…I highly suggest you follow me on Instagram.
And if you want to hear more about when I launch my courses for the last time, look for an email from me on Friday.