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I can't get rich online and neither can you. Topics include why you won't get rich with your blog, ideas you wish you had thought of, and other Internet phenomena.

Don't kid yourself...

You want to get rich with your blog? Maybe you think Adsense will let you retire? Sorry, it's not going to happen.

Archive: Not Making Money

Can’t Make Money Online? No BS Reason

I’ve done a lot of thinking lately on what I want to do with this blog.  When I first started online, I wasn’t making any money.  Despite doing a TON of research, testing, etc., I was having a hell of a time even making a few bucks.

When I finally did start making money, I was trading hours upon hours of time for $20 here, $50 there, and maybe $100 or so every now and then.  I looked around in forums, read reviews of other products, bought a few guides and software programs, and everything just seemed to show me that there was no way to make money online (at least not enough to make me excited).

Then it all changed.

I decided to stop reading so many forums on internet marketing, I stopped doing what everyone was doing or telling me to do, and I started just playing around to test things on my own.  It was shortly after that that I made some pretty cool discoveries:

  • The majority of advice given online is from people who have no real clue what they’re talking about.
  • Forums are full of even more people who have no real clue what they’re talking about (with the exception of a few good posts here and there).
  • Some methods that people claim work are complete and utterly ridiculous.
  • Some methods that people claim don’t work actually work incredibly well if you know what you’re doing.
  • It all comes down to knowing how to sell and WHAT to sell, and since most people don’t know what to sell or how to sell it, everything they try will suck (regardless of the products, guides, tools, or whatever else they buy, even though they’ll blame everyone except their freakin’ selves).

You have to think on your own, learn from your own mistakes, and be able to critique your own business.  It is only then that you can truly benefit from the loads of marketing guides and software programs out there (assuming that they’re good to start with).

After I starting fending for myself, I quickly had days where I’d make more in a single day than I would in entire months prior to that — and I did it with very limited knowledge and resources.  I had crap for a mailing list, didn’t know a soul in the world who would promote for me, and I started with barely any money to invest.

I’m not going to throw out ridiculous numbers or any crap like that, but since then, things have only gotten better.

That’s why I’ve been thinking about this blog so much and exactly what I want to do with it.  I started out being pessimistic with making money online, but I eventually turned that into my full time job (and loving it).

I want to debunk some of the common misconceptions out there, as well as tell you how I made money even on methods that others say don’t work.

I also want to review a few products every now and then, and I’m considering doing it even without using any affiliate link.  Too many whiners tend to bitch and moan anytime an affiliate link is used … probably because there are so many money whores out there looking to promote anything that pays them even a nickel … but I’m definitely not one to give up my soul for a freakin’ nickel (that would require at least $5 … just kidding).  Then again, if I don’t use an affiliate link, some bastard will probably accuse me of getting compensated in some other way if I write a good review, so maybe I’ll just say @!?* it and let the whiners whine.  What do you think?

So starting from this point on, you’re probably going to see some great money making methods here, definitely some controversy, and when everything is all said and done, with any luck, I might also get to piss a few people off.  :)

Oh, and I’ll be sure to update this blog at least every few days or so.

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You’d be Surprised at What You Can Sell Online

Lots of people make money online by writing articles, right?  Trouble is, that’s a tough market to break into.  You’ve got the established, well-respected guys who have tons of satisfied customers, and they can charge pretty much whatever they want.  On the other end of the spectrum, you’ve got the monkeys with keyboards and a thesaurus that chage $0.005 per word, driving down the average price and spewing out tons of crap.  Out of sheer boredom, I decided to try to find a happy medium between the two, and possibly make a few bucks in the process.

To be an online content writer, you have to:

  1. Be knowledgeable about a subject
  2. Be able to effectively research a topic
  3. Have a unique writing style

Options one and two left me with very few possible articles (and even fewer clients), so I decided to invest all of my efforts into option 3.  Specifically, I decided to advertise my writing skills as an angry ranting service.  For as little as $0.02/word, I would rant and rave about nearly anything, and wouldn’t you know that I ended up with a pile of orders.  I even had to raise my prices a bit to stem the tide so that I could keep up with everything.

Anger is in no short supply on the Internet, so it beats me why people wanted to purchase my writing style.  Still, money is good so I’m not going to argue.  If you have a unique writing style, try hawking it on DP some time, you might just be surprised.

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Facebook Woes

If you guys weren’t aware, a higher CTR% on the Facebook advertising platform equals a lower CPC.  I’ve finally gotten around to creating super-targeted, optimized campaigns, but there’s just one problem: It takes forever to create them.

Let’s say, for example, that I want to target women who are between the ages of 30 and 39 in the United states.  That’s a rather large group, so my CTR would be terrible.  So, in an effort to increase my CTR, I break that group into two groups (married and single).  Those groups are still huge.  What next?  I create an ad group for each age (30, 31, 32, etc).  Those groups are still enormous.  There’s only one thing left to do: Target each group to each state.  Is anybody seeing the problem here?  That’s 1,000 ad groups (2*10*50).  Sure, each group is between 1,000 and 10,000 people, which will help my CTR, but it’s going to take me three weeks to enter all of that info.

There are lots of tools out there for creating batches of Adwords groups, but I’ve never seen any for Facebook.  Anybody know of any?

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Are you Better Off than the Homeless?

If you happened to be walking around downtown Chicago today, you might have seen me and my cute girlfriend sightseeing.  Of course, you probably were paying attention to other things, like the homeless people dotting the corners.

I’m not going to get into the debate of whether or not they actually need to beg vs get a job.  Instead, I’d like to draw attention to the little signs they carry.  Notice how they usually say “I have no money, please help.”  These poor guys have nothing to their names.  Are you jealous?

Just think about it.  How many ’successful’ people out there are drowning in credit card debt?  I’m guessing quite a few.  That businessman who just walked past the homeless guy probably charged that expensive suit to his Mastercard, borrowed the money for his BMW, and is going home to an expensive apartment furnished with expensive furniture and electronics bought with his two or three other credit cards.  Mr. Businessman may be living the good life, but he’s actually got a negative net worth.  Meanwhile, the homeless guy has exactly 0 net worth, making him technically better off than the successful guy.  It’s a strange economy we live in.

This really made me think about the ‘fake it until you make it’ mentality among bloggers and affiliate marketers.  Impressing other people with big earnings checks may earn you some attention in the short run, but what’s the point if getting that $10,000 check cost you $11,000?  You’re only hurting yourself in the long run.  Unless you’re a magnificient liar, your readers are going to figure you out eventually.

I guess you can get one of two things out of this:  Be honest about what you’re doing, or hope that your readers are complete idiots.  I’m partial to the first one, but I hear the second one can get you thousands of readers in short order.

(That last bit isn’t directed towards any one person.  Shush.)

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News on teh Interwebs

Here’s a few interesting tidbits from the MMO niche you may have missed recently:

  • Jon, the founder of Wickedfire, is calling it quits .  Guess he’s sick of all the drama.  Goodnight sweet prince.
  • Ubercamp is now free .  Some of you may remember my thoughts on Paul’s project back when he started it.  I’d say that this is a good move, and should hopefully stimulate the growth of his forum.
  • Nickycakes’ ads are no longer free .  I just thought this was funny.
  • Shoemoney admits to being a former MMORPG addict . I know exactly what Shoe is talking about. My freshman year roommate got hooked on World of Warcraft, and it was like watching a building fall down in slow motion. Before WoW came out, he played a lot of video games, but he still went out to parties, went to class, etc. After WoW, he stopped going out with friends, never went to class (he played from 2 PM til 8 AM. Sleep a bit, repeat), and eventually he only left the room twice a day (to shower and run across the street for Subway). Tuesdays (when the servers were down), he’d just sit in front of his computer refreshing the server list (for hours), waiting for his server to come back up.  It was the most pathetic thing I’d ever seen.  Props to Shoe for overcomming his addiction.
  • I lost my ‘PHP and MySQL for Dummies’ book.  PR At-a-Glance is on hold until I find it.

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