Empire Building Kit: My Personal Review

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by Elle Martinez · 17 comments

Building My Side Business

As you know, our goal is to have a location independent source of income that will allow us to pay our expenses and hopefully pay our mortgage down earlier.  This mobile income can from freelance work (which is my main source of income now), working remotely, or income derived from products we create.

I went ahead and bought Chris’ Empire Building Kit when it first launched last month, because I thought it would be beneficial. My side business is profitable, but I want to build it a bit more and create a lifestyle business around it. Chris has already done this, so I wanted to learn from him (and others) and I took the plunge.

Chris is relaunching it again  and I know that some of you are probably interested in finding out about it before making a purchase.  I want to share today some of my thoughts and experiences with the Empire Building Kit and lessons I’ve learned so far.


Empire Building Kit’s Purpose and Goal

Chris’ goal with the Empire Building project is to help people build a sustainable lifestyle business (at least $50k) in one year with 365 tactical tips given daily. One big hang-up I have is I feel like I have to do everything at once. Having something to focus on is extremely helpful for me and allows me to get more done.

Like Chris’ other projects, he goes beyond just written case studies, e-books, and interviews; he includes a huge amount of information spread across written, audio, and video. No matter your learning style, this kit has numerous resources besides the daily tactical activities.

Case Study Method

The core of Chris’ process is using case studies to analyze real life situations you’d encounter when creating a business. Besides sharing his own triumphs and mistakes he’s made as he’s built his business, he includes how others have grown their business. His take on the EBK case study process:

I talk with the other entrepreneurs all about money—remember, these are people who make $50,000+ a year without employees and by doing something that they love. I ask them: “How did you make this happen? What was your best decision and your biggest mistake? What do you wish you had known when you were first getting started?” And so on. The focus of every conversation relates to this question: “How can other people do what you’ve done, in their own way?”

Building an empire isn’t just about blogging online. Chris worked hard and made an effort to get a pretty varied group of entrepreneurs. Their businesses include:

  • Coaching Artist
  • Dog Trainer
  • Graphic Designer
  • Personal Trainer
  • Photographer
  • Web Design

I think having different businesses highlighted and analyzed is a big strength for the program. While I enjoy blogging and would like to see my income grow; my main income is coming from content creation.

With the program, I went ahead and watched the videos ahead of time, which is helpful just by itself. As Chris goes over it with the daily activities I watch the video again with the questions on my other window. I treat it as a semester class and try to keep up with the assignments.

Each week there is a bit of a breather with the weekly review, so if you need a bit more time to get the work done, you can use that day.

Who is the Empire Building Kit For?

As with many things in life, this program is not for everyone. Entrepreneurship is not a get rich quick scheme and this course really emphasizes the amount of work and effort involved. That’s not to say that you have to work 90+ hours a week to create a successful business, it’s just not realistic to believe you can do it in 4 hours a week.

So who would be interested in the Empire Building Kit? I’m thinking about this the whole weekend and I think that it will appeal to:

  • People who are looking to build an income stream and want specific daily goals to help them create their own business will probably find this kit incredibly useful.
  • People who have a side business and want to make it their main source of income can find a ton of applicable information.

I mainly fall in the second category and I want to build from what I have right now. That means I have to develop some new skills to complement what I’m doing right now.

How Do Want to Start Building Your Business?

There are three different models, each appealing to slightly different audiences.  Depending on what your goals, you have to you go all out with the Hail Caesar pass or play it safe with Emperor-in-Training.

  • Emperor-in-Training - $149
  • Hail Caesar – $249
  • Alexander the Great – $449

As you can see with the prices above, this is not for the casual hobbyist. The course is designed for those looking at building a very small (size, not revenue) business. You have to examine the costs and see if this the right investment for you.

What’s Included in the Empire Building Kit?

All the kits includes the following:

  • Daily emails (for 365 days) with specific goals and tactics to help you determine a business to create and and build.
  • Video interviews with successful lifestyle entrepreneurs about how they speficially built their business (including annual figures) Update: Transcripts of the videos are included.
  • Case studies (PDFs) with a different businesses and backgrounds.
  • Video presentations from Chris on marketing topics like cross-selling and the tools he uses for his own business
  • More case studies, interviews, and content as you progress through the EBK 365 emails.

Alexander the Great & Hail Caesar Extras

There are some extra materials if you decide to go up with some more tiers. The Hail Caesar package includes 12 PDF case studies, 7 video interviews,  and 43-step Product Launch checklist. The Alexander the Great package includes 15 PDF case studies, 7 video interviews, the 43-step Product Launch checklist, and a behind the scene look at Chris’ Unconventional Guides as a business.

Your Thoughts on the Empire Building Kit

If you enrolled in the program during the inaugural launch, what is your feedback? I’ve shared mine and I’d love to see what you’ve thought of it so far. If you’re interested in picking up the Empire Building Kit, I hope you find my review helpful.

About Elle Martinez
Elle Martinez helps families at Couple Money achieve financial freedom by sharing tips for reducing debt, increase income, and building net worth. Learn how to live on one income and have fun with the second..

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  • http://earlyretirementextreme.com/ Early Retirement Extreme

    What I’d like to know is whether the $50k is realistic. For instance, how many bloggers make $50k/year and for those who don’t, is it because they haven’t followed the guidelines of the EBK?

  • Elle

    Thanks Jacob for asking.
    I think making $50k as a blogger on one site is difficult, but I personally know some that have made that leap. They’ve worked pretty much full time on their site. I respect all the work that they’ve put into it.
    Make no mistake- being successful with blogging (crowded in some niches) takes skills, a ton of work over time, and some good circumstances.

    For me, blogging is strictly a part time endeavor, so I view it as side income instead of my job. I’m going through course to streamline my process and become more effective with my time for my freelance writing and other projects.

    EBK has a mix of high level and tactical tips. I think for many people, not just considering EBK, keeping to the schedule is something they have to decide that want to do. I appreciate the daily emails because it helps me to focus on one thing instead of trying to do several things at once.

    As for Chris’ course, he covers diversifying your income streams. Consulting, creating e-products, and pursuing advertisers are some things bloggers can do to help. I make income here at Couple Money, but through blogging connections, I make most of my money on other related projects.

    Chris’ program has one case study of a personal finance blogger, but his case studies include other (mainly service) occupations.

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  • Dave Kerlin

    Hi, came upon your review while surfing around looking for reviews of Chris Guillebeau’s different products. Thanks for taking time to put this information out.

    I don’t have a business yet but know I want to create something online. Curious which product, the “Hail Caesar” or the “Emperor in Training” would be more beneficial to me.
    Which product did you buy? Any input regarding differences between the two and what you would recommend would be appreciated! Thanks!

    • Elle

      If you’re testing the water, I would go with the Emperor-in-Training. I enjoy the Hail Caesar package and it’s definitely been beneficial for myself. I’ve been able to get more clients with Chris’ help.

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  • http://couplemoney.com Elle Martinez

    Chris has a lifetime money back guarantee as far as I know.

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