Hey guys, this post is something I wanted to write for a long time now. I’m not sure how it will sound by the time I am done but hopefully you guys will understand my viewpoint :).
You just discovered Internet Marketing!
So, a lot of you guys are probably like how I was when I first started, eager to start an online business and be in complete control. No boss, your own hours and being able to not work for weeks and still make thousands. You might have first read about a couple of ideas, probably believed it was horseshit and you would be getting scammed. Eventually, for whatever reason, you met or read how someone went from 0$ to x$ over a period of time (like when I describe my adsense earnings in 2010) and might actually believe it enough to start giving it a serious try and not just read internet marketing posts/ebooks without doing anything with the information.
However let me stop you RIGHT THERE. If you do not truly put time in this and treat it as a serious business your chances of success are VERY slim. You see, when Becker and I first started, we did not think of IM as a “hobby” that we would do in our spare time and maybe one day it will work out. For me, it took me a few months to actually believe that making money online is possible and that I could do something other than being an accountant upon graduation (I was in my last semester of college btw when I started IM).
However, once I decided to take action I gave it my 100%.
I did not drop out of school yet (I was living with my parents and they would have been devastated, free rent in exchange for being at school…), but you can bet your ass that I was working 2-6 hours a day every single day, school or no school. By the end of the semester, I was making only $1/day but I was so confident that I would succeed I just worked 8 hours a day on this and barely studied for my finals. As I received my terrible grades I simply used those as leverage and an additional reason of why I cannot possibly fail. This brings me to my next point. Once you are determined to succeed, you want to FOCUS on SPECIFIC areas.
For example, I knew someone (Fingerman from our old blog) who was making money by driving traffic to his websites with SEO and monetizing with adsense. I decided to focus on exactly that. Now, please keep in mind I did not in any way copy what he was doing, he did not tell me what he was doing for almost a year! And he did not want to show me any of his websites until way later when I was at $100/day. All I knew is “Alex, I drive traffic to my websites with SEO and then you know about those Google ads? It’s called adsense and they make me $250+ a day without much maintenance work”. I then proceeded to Google every single word that I did not understand (SEO, adsense etc.) and found out for myself how I could make it work. I started visiting the warrior forums, reading a few ebooks on those topics and started having a blueprint to how I could succeed which a year later became the ultimate guide that is on this website. However, this is when you get in the second trap of wanting to do money online.
Yep, not only will you see hundreds of ideas in forums but if you buy products you will start getting email spam about hundreds of different products and services you could buy. While I’m sure some of those would be helpful, they will distract you from truly perfecting your art in an IM field. You cannot start IM and expect do to everything at the same time. SEO, PPC, Aff mkt, product creation, sales letters, CPA, video mkt, social media traffic etc. However those products will probably tempt you to try out different fields under the promise of “this guy was able to make $5k in one month using this technique”. Sure, that might be true but of course that does not include the many months it took him to reach that point. Furthermore, I can guarantee you even if you copy exactly his techniques you will not reach $5k by the next month (and if you do, forward me that course ;)). Is it because he did not reveal all his secrets? Well, that’s probably true but the real reason is that the money comes from following the process FOCUSING on that task and putting your 100% into it. Analyze your own work and figuring out what can be improved. What you get from a course is the conclusion mindset of the author (by the time it comes out) and not necessarily the process, the author will most likely constantly be improving his business/technique. Or, just make a shitton of money off selling that course and ride on that wave for a while. 😉
Would it be useful for the product creator to tell you what brought them to where they are today? Maybe… But that might not sell the course as well, and it would make it a far more boring course to read/watch.
Things in IM constantly change
That is what separates the buyers who never end up making money to those that will. Even for SEO hybrid, Me and Becker were done with the videos and it’s going to be released on the first week of December but a few days ago the yahoo backlink database shutdown! I added a new video mentioning how I now use ahrefs.com to freely analyze the competition. If Seo Hybrid was released last week, already a part of it would be “outdated”. If you just follow a course 100% and expect to make as much as the authors, well that will not happen. It’s a good guideline to start with but then you have to apply your own twists.
When I started, all I knew was SEO + adsense is possible
While people were preaching small websites when I started in early 2010 I decided to build a few of those and a few big ones. The big ones sucked for the first 5-6 months (my small sites were already making money…) but eventually were the reason I was able to reach a high income and probably why I never got banned by Google Adsense unlike many other IM’ers using Adsense. I also was never very into using obvious spam techniques such as profile links, blog comment spam or Xrunner (which is annoying and spams our linkback forums so much, you guys don’t see all I have to moderate at times :P). Whether those work for you or not is for you to decide but I doubt sooner or later these will not be made useless… In the last two months I have been studying and trying PPC/social media because SEO is not a good traffic source (currently) for the iPhone app business I am working on. The top search results in SEO are big brands so the only way I can get people to my site is PPC so I have been learning how to reduce CPC and get as many people as possible to click on my ads. The only “SEO” I have been doing is for my niche sites with a bit of social bookmarking from bookmarking demon since that’s quite effortless but besides that I don’t have time for it.
Becker started from reading thelinkback.com back when it was called passive income seo and followed what me and fingerman used to make money. He started a popular college dating advice site, brought traffic from a lot of sources beyond SEO and decided to build an email list and sell a product after many months of sharing free advice. His first sales page was very bad compared to what it is now. He first basically said how he sucked but knew a thousand ways to get girls to throw their panties at him. However, he later learned that people would much prefer a relatable person and learn about the story of a legitimate guy that was shy talking with girls growing up but over time became a beast around his campus.
Anyway, between all my close friends that were interested in doing what I do and all the people I exchange emails with, for every success there are (probably) hundreds of people who quit or lose interest. So far I probably tried to help 5 or so people to start their online business in my local social circle and none went beyond a few $’s a day so far, I think all of them quit by now… It simply comes down to, how much do you want it and do not rely on others to teach you everything, a lot of this is self taught. Internet marketing is not for everyone. I think everyone would like it, and I have a hard time not sounding as if I am bragging when I describe what I do to people I meet in everyday life because while it still sounds awesome to me, to most people it blows their freaking mind!
I also almost never tell them how much I make or the fact I make that working ~20 hours a week instead of most people’s 40 hours or so. Especially when a lot of people of my age work at the local grocery store as a wrapper (my first job!). There is great advice out there, including hopefully this blog but it can only guide you, not teach you everything you will know.
No one is above the process and even if you feel you are completely retarded right now you can succeed. Case in point, in closing of this post, when Becker first started he asked this to my friend.
“Hey since lawyers cpc is so high, could I make a lawyer site, then drive around town from different IPs and click my ads”
<3 Becker. This amazing idea was only 9 months ago when he started… A few days ago, Becker made 5 figures selling a few of his websites to make his increasing workload easier to manage!