Matt Tran felt sad when his last year of college was coming to an end. He truly believed these were going to be the best years of his life. Contrary to popular belief, he ended up hating both of the mechanical engineering internships he had.
That scared him.
Adulthood seemed like something he would absolutely loathe. Working 40 hours a week doing the work he hated? Would there even be free time for him to be able to see his friends?
Two years later, Matt is now in Bali. He just came back from a weekend in Singapore and another week in Jakarta, Indonesia. He's earning 100% of his income through his YouTube channel,Engineered Truth. Plus, he is starting up a new social media campaign with Bro Science Life.
As long as Matt has his trusted laptop and a good internet connection, he can work from anywhere in the world. Plus, instead of the tiresome 40 hour a week grind, he is able to pay for his apartment in downtown Los Angeles, along with his travels by committing 20 hours a week to his work.
These are the 5 things that Matt did to live his dreams:
1. Live at home
Matt lived with his parents for two years while he switched careers. He was fired from all 3 mechanical positions he had for constantly being late. He hated the work he was doing. He couldn't fake it anymore. After failing at his third job, he moved back in with his parents. He started to work on his YouTube channel full time. This was back when he had 5,000 subscribers and was earning $250 a month from his channel. He was so broke, he couldn't go on basic dates. But that didn't stop him.
2. Master your platform
When Matt first took YouTube full-time, he didn't know use a DSLR. He had to teach himself everything about media (filming, editing, audio, script writing, etc.) and then had to work on other aspects about making a good YouTube channel like SEO and public speaking. If you watch his beginning videos to the ones currently up, you will see a drastic improvement in his public skills over the years.
3. Take a pay cut
When Matt was engineer intern, he was earning $22.50 an hour. The pay checks from being in the media compared to engineering are significantly smaller. After working on the YouTube channel full-time for 6 months, it didn't grow as much as Matt would have liked. He went from 5,000 subscribers to about 14,200 subscribers and only increased the revenue of his channel to $600/month. In the process of making better videos on his channel, he got decent at making videos and figured he could get a job creating YouTube videos for a company. He interviewed for two ecommerce companies and was hired for a position that paid $15 an hour.
4. Improve quickly
For nine months, Matt was making product and tutorial videos during the day. At night, he was making his own videos for Engineered Truth. He enjoyed working at the commerce business, but making $15 a month was was never the long-term goal. It didn't seem like Matt was going to get a significant raise, so he applied for positions and got a contract to do social media for the digital media publisher Uproxx. The contract easily eclipsed his pay at the ecommerce business, so he changed careers.
5. Good work lead to more work
When Matt grew Uproxx's Instagam from 950 followers to 25,000 in 6 months, one of his friend's saw his work and offered him a few contracts to do social media. He was offered a contract with a company called Bro Science Life. At that time, Matt's YouTube channel revenue increased to about $1,400/month, and it has been smooth sailing since.
When Matt was in college, he chronically felt guilty because his parents paid his tuition. Now, he enjoys new experiences guilt free because he can pay for everything himself by working while on his flights or in his hotel room.
Matt put himself in a situation where his media career had to work out or he was going to be broke indefinitely. It panned out for him, and now he never has to return to the corporate grind. He shares his journey in his new book, New Grad Job Hacks: The Complete Guide to Getting a Job After You Finish College.