Making My First Million Online- My Story

by kk075
217 replies
Hey everyone. Since I read so many repetitive posts on here about "where to start", I figured that I'd share my personal story for others to draw inspiration and ideas from. While I'm a writer at heart, I've run the full gauntlet in the marketing world with zero formal training, education or experience...so I hope it gives you some clarity on this world.

I will say that I typed this from start to finish in one sitting though, so please forgive any typos in advance. This came from the heart and I never edit things like that.

When I first started writing online, it was nothing more than a hobby. I had recently sold a business and I got a cushy state job that I had planned on riding for 20 years into the state pension system, and the last thing I was looking for was a career change. I just wanted to relax, travel with my family and watch the kids grow up.

I had always loved writing though, so I'd look for small jobs writing content for $5-10 an article on Elance and similar sites. Then I started writing my own articles on the Yahoo Voices network and eventually they made me a feature writer for sports, home improvement and technology. These were 500 word articles that paid $15-20 each and they got syndicated out as well, so I was averaging 10-20k page views per post.

At that point, I was making around $300 a month just writing to write, but I had also surpassed 3 million page views on Yahoo and people were starting to contact me directly. In fact, one of the first ones was Caribbean Cruise Lines; they offered me $50 per Yahoo blog to talk about the cruising industry and some of their ships. And I thought that was great money until an affiliate marketing company offered me $150 per blog to talk about their various websites...and I think that's when I officially stopped being just another writer.

Now, at first I thought that they loved me as a writer...and I guess in some ways they did. All they really cared about was my link-juice from a PR10 site and my 1,000+ followers who seemed to comment on every article. (and this was back before we knew comments and on-page times were even a factor). So in a way I was being used for my resources but hey, at $50-100 a pop for 20 minutes of my time, I can live with that.

From that point forward, I kept writing about sports and technology for $10-20 a pop, but I also took on an extra $300-500 a week from select clients that were contacting me. And then I thought, "I make more money writing 5 hours a week than I do working 40 hours for the state," so I quit my job. Because even back then I understood that writing articles wasn't really about SEO or what Google wanted to see, it was about connecting businesses to people. And to do that, you don't focus on what the business says...you focus on what their customers would ultimately want to hear. Because Google has always said that the site with the best information should always rank #1 overall, and that's why the last 3-4 years of algorithms have focused so heavily on the social metrics of websites (time on site, pages viewed, comments, likes, etc.).

So here's the best piece of advice you'll ever hear- Google has never changed. Not one bit. They only got better at meeting their original objective of making the site with the best content appear in the #1 slot, and you can't do that by trying to optimize for Google. Instead, optimize your sites for the people you're trying to connect with...and then Google will see your value. If you do that, then no Penguin or Panda update in the world can touch you.

By 2007, I was ranked the #24 grossing copywriter on Elance simply because my copy converted ridiculously well. I was fortunate enough to get hired by a few awesome SEO companies early on that taught me a whole lot about websites, and because of them my rates steadily increased over time. First it was $15 an hour, then $25, then $40...and I went up in price with new clients every time I had more work than I had time in the week.

By 2008, I realized that I was working 80 hours a week and never coming up for air, so I completely changed my business model. Instead of doing all the writing myself, I posted ads online for people who wanted to learn online marketing and I asked them for a simple writing sample. I'd say something like, write me a paragraph about the best place on Earth...or the best food you ever eaten...and then I'd reply to those who genuinely impressed me. Even if the content was fantastic though, I'd pick it apart from an SEO and creative standpoint just to see how the writers would respond. If they said, "Thanks for the advice/critiques...it really helped!," I'd take them on as an apprentice. If they defended their work, then I blew them off since they didn't want to truly learn.

Within six months, I had four writers "in training" and I took every decent priced job on Elance for them to work on. I gave them 50-80% of the revenue (depending on how good they were), kept the rest for my editing/teaching and I promised to give them the clients they worked for directly once they got close to my level. I taught them everything they needed from a business standpoint though; time management, customer service, dealing with jerks, how to properly bid...I handed out complete blueprints.

By 2009, I was the #1 grossing writer on Elance BY FAR and I had probably cycled through at least 30 writers of my own. Surprisingly though, only 3 or 4 stuck it out...the rest would become lazy shortly after they received their first few big paychecks. Then they'd come back a week later with some super-lame excuse why they disappeared, and like an idiot I'd give them another shot. It taught me a lesson though, most people are not cut out for freelance writing because of the complete freedom. It's hard to stay focused and disciplined when nobody is watching ...maybe only 3 out of 100 aspiring writers have the work ethic. And I'm saying that because I've literally hired/trained a thousand people over the past 7 years, and only 30 stuck with it all the way through. And you know what? Out of those 30, almost all 30 make six figure salaries today...either running an SEO firm or doing their own thing. About a half dozen of them have surpassed me as well and I couldn't be happier for them.

On the other hand, about 800 of the thousand are still writing $10 articles on and off because they never understood the success they could have by truly committing. As soon as they had a little success, it went to their heads and they would forget that marketing is a business. You have to study, keep up with trends, talk to your customers, constantly market, build your network.....and post lots of content daily. The 800+ just couldn't do that without someone standing over them and telling them to.

In 2011, I was offered a job with one of the hottest internet marketing firms at the time...and I really struggled with what to do. I was clearing $80k a year doing my own thing and only working 40-50 hours a week, but it was also a massive opportunity to learn from other professionals. Because you have to realize that by this point, I still hadn't worked for any type of newspaper, marketing firm or magazine....I was as freelance as you can get. So I threw out a number that I didn't think they could even consider ($90k a year) and they said yes...if I'd sign a non-compete and drop all my clients.

Well, this was both the best and the worst decision of my life...because the company laid me off within six months because I didn't want to move to their city and take a big promotion. They did teach me the internet marketing side of the business though and showed me how they made tens of millions a year through affiliates, so I reinvented myself once again....but this time I was 100% broke because I had just bought a huge home.

From that point on, I went back to Elance (where my reputation had all but died since everything is based on your last 6 months of performance) and started searching for clients. I hit Craigslist, great job boards and everywhere else I could find as well. It was slow going though so I made my first affiliate site, which taught employers how to find freelance writers. Elance and oDesk paid me $50 each per new business sign-up (and $5 per new writer), and I spent about six weeks 100% focused on that site. The first month, it earned $450, and it took in $1650 in month two. I was at $1400 about halfway through month 3 when someone offered to buy the site for $15,000, and I countered with $28,000. We settled at $21,500 and I haven't done an affiliate site since. Because I reinvented myself yet again.

As a writer, I was worth $40-50 an hour and as a marketer I could bring in double that. But by teaching people to quickly rank their websites and writing their copy, I was coming out closer to the $150/hr range, and my phone was always ringing with new opportunities. It was about that time I started working with someone who was advertising online for local businesses and everything I was doing just clicked...how many industries out there needed more traffic but didn't know how to get it?

So I started working with a web developer and we built specialty sites for contractors, real estate agents, dentists and all the skilled trades...selling them qualified leads for $100 a pop. And we were getting tons of leads, so we slowly progressed to a percentage of the sale instead of flat rates...which turned out to be huge. Someone got a $30k swimming pool installed and I made 3k, someone bought a $150k home and I got $2k off of the commissions...and these leads were coming in daily. I OWNED the local search results because nobody else was doing this, and the biggest companies in my area would come to me for leads because I'd have the first five slots on Google and they'd be at #6.

Then I hit the exact same problem as I did with the writers though; the web developer made a quick $50,000 in two months and thought he was Donald Trump. So he became unreliable, stopped working but still demanded half...and I finally deleted all my content and gave the guy the entire business. Now, he works for a local company making $40k a year as a programmer in a dead end job...and I've been searching for a "web builder" version of me ever since.

So for now, I'm mainly writing video scripts, email marketing, blogs, eBooks and other marketing content for a few Fortune 500 companies, plus I have my SEO firm focusing solely on generating local leads as well. Almost completely by accident though, I think I learned just about every possible way to make money as a writer/entrepreneur and it has been an amazing journey. And honestly, I do not know what's next...but I will reinvent myself once again to raise the bar even higher. Because that's what a true entrepreneur does.

Anyway, I hope that helped...I just gave you at least a dozen ways to make the money you're looking for. And if you fall into that golden 2-3% of the writers/marketers out there that I worked so hard to find for years, then who knows...the sky is the limit.
#making #million #online #story
  • Profile picture of the author edyang
    "So here's the best piece of advice you'll ever hear- Google has never changed. Not one bit. They only got better at meeting their original objective of making the site with the best content appear in the #1 slot, and you can't do that by trying to optimize for Google. Instead, optimize your sites for the people you're trying to connect with...and then Google will see your value. If you do that, then no Penguin or Panda update in the world can touch you."

    This paragraph alone is worth its weight in gold. Really enjoyed your story. Reinventing yourself is key to surviving and thriving in this new economy. It is a skill we really need to be teaching the next generation. I know I'll be drilling my 6 year old daughter with this concept as she grows up.
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    • Profile picture of the author shmeeko69
      Originally Posted by edyang View Post

      "So here's the best piece of advice you'll ever hear- Google has never changed. Not one bit. They only got better at meeting their original objective of making the site with the best content appear in the #1 slot, and you can't do that by trying to optimize for Google. Instead, optimize your sites for the people you're trying to connect with...and then Google will see your value. If you do that, then no Penguin or Panda update in the world can touch you."

      This paragraph alone is worth its weight in gold. Really enjoyed your story. Reinventing yourself is key to surviving and thriving in this new economy. It is a skill we really need to be teaching the next generation. I know I'll be drilling my 6 year old daughter with this concept as she grows up.
      But there is no consistency with Google and their continuous algorithmic updates especially when you type in different keyword phrases in to their search engine and it comes back with two or three offerings from the same domain address?

      This is something that Matt Cutts and his egotistical programming team at Google says they're going to eliminate, as it doesn't offer the prospective viewer a pleasurable viewing experience. Random example below

      K.Phrase For Google >> Concept2 Model D Indoor Rowing Machine with PM5

      Page One - Two entries for concept.co.uk and indoorsportseervices.co.uk

      Consistency Google? Yeh Right!
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  • Profile picture of the author tumichael
    So here's the best piece of advice you'll ever hear- Google has never changed. Not one bit. They only got better at meeting their original objective of making the site with the best content appear in the #1 slot, and you can't do that by trying to optimize for Google. Instead, optimize your sites for the people you're trying to connect with...and then Google will see your value. If you do that, then no Penguin or Panda update in the world can touch you.
    I am speechless!!! That's exactly the thing I always remind of people but cannot explain in details like you did. Doing business with people, not with Google so sooner or later products with true value will arise and SEO is not a magic wand to increase sales on the site.
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  • Profile picture of the author Mav91890
    It was a great story. That's all it was, a story.
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    • Profile picture of the author kk075
      Originally Posted by Mav91890 View Post

      It was a great story. That's all it was, a story.
      ...and welcome to the 97% I kept mentioning. It was just a story, my story, and it also happens to be 100% true.
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      • Profile picture of the author azad
        I believe in your this story. Thanks for sharing with us.
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      • Profile picture of the author mdvs42
        hi
        i really enjoyed your article and honesty. This business is a journey and not a destination as some would want you to believe... Theres alot that i want to say and some people have said im good with words, but trying to get it sometimes is the struggle! But thanks again and hope to read more.
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    • Profile picture of the author Eagleone1
      Great story and very educative...
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  • Profile picture of the author Tabish khan
    [DELETED]
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  • Profile picture of the author creztor
    Agree about the post focusing on quality content for your audience. You can "game" Google, but then the game changes and you need to rework it. Is it worth it? Depends. Some people seem to do well selling services that allow people to game search engine results, perhaps we should learn from what they DO and not what they SAY.
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  • Profile picture of the author QueenMelanie
    Fantastic story, can see your dedication and experience oozing out of your post..
    I started off as a freelancer too, and I have started seeing some success, but even more success in another area of freelancing so now I think the next step is creating a freelance agency and doing a similar process you did of building up a team of quality writers..
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    • Profile picture of the author kk075
      Originally Posted by QueenMelanie View Post

      Fantastic story, can see your dedication and experience oozing out of your post..
      I started off as a freelancer too, and I have started seeing some success, but even more success in another area of freelancing so now I think the next step is creating a freelance agency and doing a similar process you did of building up a team of quality writers..
      That's sort of what happened to me as well and trust me, there are tons of holes in my story where I tried things that didn't work. But you know what? I didn't mention those things on purpose because it wasn't the idea that failed, it was my execution.

      I just didn't know enough and I didn't have a mentor, which was why I was passionate about helping others. It felt like we were all in a secret little club that the rest of the world didn't know about, and I was desperate to find others who would dedicate 100% of themselves towards becoming successful.

      If you do start an agency (and I think it's a great idea, especially if you'l pay it forward like I did), here are three tips I can give you-

      1) Take the first piece of content each writer gives you and spend 10-15 full minutes tearing it to pieces. It will seem like a waste of time at first, but I found that it's the best way to really see if they have the heart and dedication to be a winner. I always started that email back to them with something like, "I just want you to know that I was super harsh in my critique, but I did that so you'd quickly see what works and what doesn't. It can be a good or a bad thing...that's up to you."

      2) While this seems like a great way to make fast cash, realize that you'll spend over half your day answering questions and editing. So make your standards very well known from day one, and edit mistakes with "track changes" so people can see your ideas. Don't keep correcting the same stuff over and over though...make the writer do it! Because they'll either quit or get better, and both are doing you a favor.

      3) Finally, I never tried to give writers a "job"; my goal was legitimately to make them better writers and eventually solid entrepreneurs. Because whether you do this or not, you will have lots of turnover...it's just the nature of the industry. So give those who genuinely excel an opportunity to become your peer and you'll have lifelong friends who will always be happy to bail you out when your workweek gets insane.

      Once again, thanks to everyone for your heartfelt comments. I posted this to genuinely help and that's why I showed several of my failures...it is those moments that determine whether we will become superstars or not. In the grand scheme of things, I'm a nobody that still has tons of stuff to learn, so just stay humble and work hard...and success will come.
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      • Profile picture of the author QueenMelanie
        Originally Posted by kk075 View Post

        That's sort of what happened to me as well and trust me, there are tons of holes in my story where I tried things that didn't work. But you know what? I didn't mention those things on purpose because it wasn't the idea that failed, it was my execution.

        I just didn't know enough and I didn't have a mentor, which was why I was passionate about helping others. It felt like we were all in a secret little club that the rest of the world didn't know about, and I was desperate to find others who would dedicate 100% of themselves towards becoming successful.

        If you do start an agency (and I think it's a great idea, especially if you'l pay it forward like I did), here are three tips I can give you-

        1) Take the first piece of content each writer gives you and spend 10-15 full minutes tearing it to pieces. It will seem like a waste of time at first, but I found that it's the best way to really see if they have the heart and dedication to be a winner. I always started that email back to them with something like, "I just want you to know that I was super harsh in my critique, but I did that so you'd quickly see what works and what doesn't. It can be a good or a bad thing...that's up to you."

        2) While this seems like a great way to make fast cash, realize that you'll spend over half your day answering questions and editing. So make your standards very well known from day one, and edit mistakes with "track changes" so people can see your ideas. Don't keep correcting the same stuff over and over though...make the writer do it! Because they'll either quit or get better, and both are doing you a favor.

        3) Finally, I never tried to give writers a "job"; my goal was legitimately to make them better writers and eventually solid entrepreneurs. Because whether you do this or not, you will have lots of turnover...it's just the nature of the industry. So give those who genuinely excel an opportunity to become your peer and you'll have lifelong friends who will always be happy to bail you out when your workweek gets insane.

        Once again, thanks to everyone for your heartfelt comments. I posted this to genuinely help and that's why I showed several of my failures...it is those moments that determine whether we will become superstars or not. In the grand scheme of things, I'm a nobody that still has tons of stuff to learn, so just stay humble and work hard...and success will come.
        Thanks a lot for your insight on this. I will for sure do step 1 mentioned above, if I ever find people who actually have determination.. Most people are like yes I want to work with you sooo badly please give me a chance, and then when i'm like ok can you write this 500 word article, they're like ooohhh, urrmmm, could i do this tomorrow or the day after because blah blah..

        I think that's why I got so successful so quickly as a freelancer, because the majority of freelancers are lazy gits who are just seeking quick easy cash, not hard work or advancement! Need to find some people like you, even just to talk about IM with. I feel alone in my ventures, the majority of my friends are back home smoking weed and playing call of duty all day and have no desire to be successful and my family simply won't understand what I do.. ok rant over, thanks again for your response!
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        • Profile picture of the author kk075
          Originally Posted by QueenMelanie View Post

          Thanks a lot for your insight on this. I will for sure do step 1 mentioned above, if I ever find people who actually have determination.. Most people are like yes I want to work with you sooo badly please give me a chance, and then when i'm like ok can you write this 500 word article, they're like ooohhh, urrmmm, could i do this tomorrow or the day after because blah blah..

          I think that's why I got so successful so quickly as a freelancer, because the majority of freelancers are lazy gits who are just seeking quick easy cash, not hard work or advancement! Need to find some people like you, even just to talk about IM with. I feel alone in my ventures, the majority of my friends are back home smoking weed and playing call of duty all day and have no desire to be successful and my family simply won't understand what I do.. ok rant over, thanks again for your response!
          Sure, feel free to reach out via PM anytime and I'll help if I can. I'd have no problem sharing contact info because I'm in the same boat as you...I get great ideas and think, "Man, I'm already working myself like mad and making it....do I really want to put a steady cash-flow on hold to try this new idea?" It definitely helps to have other professionals to confide in.
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    • Profile picture of the author OracleVentures
      This is a very interesting story. As someone who owns a website design company let me know if you need any website designer help!
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      • Profile picture of the author kk075
        Originally Posted by OracleVentures View Post

        This is a very interesting story. As someone who owns a website design company let me know if you need any website designer help!
        I ALWAYS need web designer help, but I'm also very picky in that I look for partners that can see the bigger picture. I have a web design firm as well (which I started purely for the local copywriting/SEO jobs) so I'm always handing out leads for the design aspects.

        And by the way, I'm just throwing this out there.....I never charge web designers a penny for writing their site's copy, creating email campaigns or writing sales letters. I'd much rather build a relationship and have you owe me one, just because I always need more sites for my clients or my own ideas.

        So if any of you web builders or artists need some sizzling copy to captivate your audience and help you start climbing the ranks of Google, feel free to reach out and maybe we can swap services. I'll gladly tell you what can improve on your site if we end up working together as well, because I believe in actual partnerships where everyone wins.
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  • Profile picture of the author tyronne78
    Inspiring story kk075. I'm with you on everything you said. Always optimize your content for people NOT search engines.
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  • Profile picture of the author Adrianhenry
    Wow! This could not have come at a better time for me. I love reading stories like this at the best of times but I am just at that point where I am in need of some motivation and I too am a writer. So this truly resonates with me!

    Thanks so much for this
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  • This is great. As a writer myself in the past, and also now every once in awhile, it's amazing to see how far you've come in the writing industry specifically.

    I find this entire post to be very inspirational for anybody looking for a good way to get started online, and also make a career out of it.

    I believe that freelance writing is by far one of the best ways to actually get started online because writing is something almost everyone with a basic understanding of the basic English language can do.

    And obviously, there are people who will want to do it just for the quick success while there are many out there who can take this to the next level. Either way, there is money in this industry.

    Wishing you the best with all your endeavors in your writing career.
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  • Profile picture of the author NoMoreWords
    @kk075 I just want to know, if you've been around the business for so long, why have you registered for WF only this year? Did you discover the forum just now or?

    P.S. Kudos on the great story and the constant will for rediscovering and upping another gear.
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    • Profile picture of the author kk075
      Originally Posted by NoMoreWords View Post

      @kk075 I just want to know, if you've been around the business for so long, why have you registered for WF only this year? Did you discover the forum just now or?

      P.S. Kudos on the great story and the constant will for rediscovering and upping another gear.
      Honestly, I never even thought about posting on a forum...I was too darn busy working. Back when I started around 2000 though, there was no decent information on the net...it was only, "Buy this Course and Become a Millionaire Overnight." And those people are liars, and the few forums I checked out back then was full of that mentality. So I just kept grinding away doing what I knew how to do, and asking my smarter clients everything I could about their business models.

      I'm sick as a dog right now with he flu though, so a few days ago I was just looking for somewhere to write and share "war stories" with other marketing veterans. I sort of found the exact opposite here though...so many people saying, "How do I start?" So the writer part kicked in and my brain said, "Let's tell your story." And here we are.
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      • Profile picture of the author boydstone
        No decent information on the net in 2000? Are you saying that Bill Myers and Gordon Alexander and MaaMaw and Don Alm and Willie Crawford and Marlon Sanders, etc., etc., provided no decent information and were liars? Better think on that one again, you just made a terrible impression on those of us who really were around at that time, and probably pissed off some people.

        Further, you're wrong about the courses being only the overnight millionaire sort. When the IM scene got started on the net there were no courses being sold for a long time, of the overnight millionaire sort or any other sort.


        Originally Posted by kk075 View Post

        Honestly, I never even thought about posting on a forum...I was too darn busy working. Back when I started around 2000 though, there was no decent information on the net...it was only, "Buy this Course and Become a Millionaire Overnight." And those people are liars, and the few forums I checked out back then was full of that mentality. So I just kept grinding away doing what I knew how to do, and asking my smarter clients everything I could about their business models.
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        • Profile picture of the author kk075
          Originally Posted by boydstone View Post

          No decent information on the net in 2000? Are you saying that Bill Myers and Gordon Alexander and MaaMaw and Don Alm and Willie Crawford and Marlon Sanders, etc., etc., provided no decent information and were liars? Better think on that one again, you just made a terrible impression on those of us who really were around at that time, and probably pissed off some people.

          Further, you're wrong about the courses being only the overnight millionaire sort. When the IM scene got started on the net there were no courses being sold for a long time, of the overnight millionaire sort or any other sort.
          I thought this forum was about helping others succeed, but for some reason it seems like that makes you angry. Well, I'm sorry you're angry. I'm sorry I didn't find your idols in the year 2000. Most of all though, I'm sorry for being an independent thinker that became successful online largely on my own. I can't understand why that would infuriate you though. If I didn't find these guys you were worshiping back then, how can I have an opinion on them?

          At the end of the day though, if that offends some people...then I guess they just need to be offended. Because I posted to help others and it looks like you were the only one so far who couldn't grasp that concept. I wonder what Myers, Alexander, Crawford and Sanders would say about that? Or are we mad at them as well for having independent thoughts?
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        • Profile picture of the author .X.
          Please keep in mind many of us who were around and striving to make money online then had no idea this community existed. I was only 16 hours a day for four years before I discovered the Warrior Forum - and at that you've listed 3 people I still haven't heard of! (I originally joined the WF in 2002)

          This community is much smaller and much more obscure, in contrast to the rest of the world, than many within it realize. The information may have been "out there" but it doesn't mean everybody was aware of it, even if they wanted it and sought it out.

          Originally Posted by boydstone View Post

          No decent information on the net in 2000? Are you saying that Bill Myers and Gordon Alexander and MaaMaw and Don Alm and Willie Crawford and Marlon Sanders, etc., etc., provided no decent information and were liars? Better think on that one again, you just made a terrible impression on those of us who really were around at that time, and probably pissed off some people.

          Further, you're wrong about the courses being only the overnight millionaire sort. When the IM scene got started on the net there were no courses being sold for a long time, of the overnight millionaire sort or any other sort.
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      • Profile picture of the author Shaknbak
        SO glad you did! And welcome.

        I'm in the "where do I start" phase. Been in several business over the last 4 decades and I think IM has the potential to me "retirement" anywhere on the planet that I want to be.

        Your story is inspiring. Thanks for sharing from the heart.
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  • Great story from start to finish. Very inspiring! I think its great that you were able to keep on finding success no matter how many times you had to reinvent yourself. Keep on keeping on!
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  • Profile picture of the author art72
    kk075 - Great story, very intriguing!

    It's rather amusing actually, the other day we had a 'mild' conflict concerning SEO, as a thread appeared in the main forum, and my response obviously didn't resonate well with you. The irony being, my entire message was to deliver to the audience as opposed to impressing Google.

    Naturally, if you can do both win/win.

    You were not wrong to suggest I do not know a ton about SEO strategies, simply because I employ the same philosophy you revealed above when you started out... I just wanted a way to write and benefit a specific audience.

    Your post above is exactly what many here need to be reading and implementing, as opposed to bouncing all over the forum asking irrelevant questions concerning the fastest way to make a quick buck, or game Google.

    As an aspiring writer myself, I sincerely appreciate you sharing your story here, it certainly changed my entire prospective of what you were saying in the SEO related post the other day, (of which I obviously misrepresented your take pertaining to the SEO 'benefits' side of things...)

    So, my thanks and my apology all-in-one!

    Great Post!

    Art
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    • Profile picture of the author kk075
      Originally Posted by art72 View Post

      kk075 - Great story, very intriguing!

      It's rather amusing actually, the other day we had a 'mild' conflict concerning SEO, as a thread appeared in the main forum, and my response obviously didn't resonate well with you. The irony being, my entire message was to deliver to the audience as opposed to impressing Google.

      Naturally, if you can do both win/win.

      You were not wrong to suggest I do not know a ton about SEO strategies, simply because I employ the same philosophy you revealed above when you started out... I just wanted a way to write and benefit a specific audience.

      Your post above is exactly what many here need to be reading and implementing, as opposed to bouncing all over the forum asking irrelevant questions concerning the fastest way to make a quick buck, or game Google.

      As an aspiring writer myself, I sincerely appreciate you sharing your story here, it certainly changed my entire prospective of what you were saying in the SEO related post the other day, (of which I obviously misrepresented your take pertaining to the SEO 'benefits' side of things...)

      So, my thanks and my apology all-in-one!

      Great Post!

      Art
      No worries about the misunderstanding...I genuinely post to help people and I give my honest opinion every time. Since I'm good with words I think it intimidates some people, but that's not my intent at all.

      Anyway, hopefully there's no hard feelings.
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  • Profile picture of the author enterprisemind
    You basically just gave every online marketer the blueprint of how to start for $0 and become a huge success online. From the writing aspect, the search and seizure of outlets to post, and the distribution of your material. We all know Content Is King and you just illustrated why. Thanks for sharing.
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    • Profile picture of the author Steve B
      Originally Posted by enterprisemind View Post

      You basically just gave every online marketer the blueprint of how to start for $0 and become a huge success online.

      No . . . I didn't take that at all from his story.

      He gave every online marketer the idea of how to join the 100 other writers in the pool of candidates - only 3 of which will become a successful writer.

      Remember, 3 actually had what it takes to be like kk075.

      Writing for online profitability is both an art and a skill. Yes you can work at it to become better . . . good at writing . . . but as kk075 stated:
      ". . . most people are not cut out for freelance writing because of the complete freedom. It's hard to stay focused and disciplined when nobody is watching ...maybe only 3 out of 100 aspiring writers have the work ethic."
      Thanks for the share.

      Steve
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      • Profile picture of the author ellers
        that's a great story. i thought elance was dead. did you redirect each article to your website or affiliate?
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  • Profile picture of the author kk075
    By the way, I was "thanking" everyone that responded but the system won't let me do that anymore...I guess there's a cap before they count it as spam. So for those who have replied so kindly, "Thanks!"
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  • Profile picture of the author surenpp
    A warrior does not give up what he loves, he finds the love in what he does

    Dan Millman, Way of the Peaceful Warrior
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  • Profile picture of the author greatpeace
    That is an impressive story and I'm really impress with your effort. Great job warrior.
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  • Profile picture of the author grafx77
    What a great, inspiring, well thought out article. I can definitely see why so many have hired you for your writing prowess. Very good and thank you for sharing.
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  • Profile picture of the author oda
    Great Share, Now where do I send my one paragraph about the best place on Earth?

    Thanks Heaps

    ODA
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    • Profile picture of the author kk075
      Originally Posted by oda View Post

      Great Share, Now where do I send my one paragraph about the best place on Earth?

      Thanks Heaps

      ODA
      LOL, feel free to PM me and I'll complain about what's wrong with it as soon as I can. The test doesn't work as well though when you know what's coming and my motivations for doing it
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  • Profile picture of the author arcamir
    Hi,

    Thanks for sharing your story.

    I am very busy and thought of having a quick glance at WF. Then, coincidentally, I clicked your thread and just read through you story. I am glad to read it.

    I always thought of re-inventing myself. But lately, my 40-60 hrs per week job seems to consume all of my time and honestly, I felt a bit discouraged of not being able to 'prepare' or learn where and how to start my so-called reinvention.

    Your post just lets me see the silver lining. I should not give up.

    Really, thank you. This really helps.
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  • Profile picture of the author neophyte123
    Thanks for this inspiring post.

    Are you interested in sharing your experience by launching an online course. I'm sure it'll help many of us here.
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    • Profile picture of the author discrat
      Hey kk,
      What a great and inspirational story.

      I do not know if you have noticed this Trend, but it seems like many of the Marketers today just do not have the fundamental rudiments for good writing.

      They grew up where tablets ,instead of pencil and paper, were mandatory for English class.

      I think if many of the young kids pursuing IM would realize the value of learning to write and being creative at it, they would open up a brand new World for themselves. And have much more Success in the long run

      Just my 2 cents

      Thanks again for the share


      - Robert Andrew
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      • Profile picture of the author kk075
        Originally Posted by discrat View Post

        Hey kk,
        What a great and inspirational story.

        I do not know if you have noticed this Trend, but it seems like many of the Marketers today just do not have the fundamental rudiments for good writing.

        They grew up where tablets ,instead of pencil and paper, were mandatory for English class.

        I think if many of the young kids pursuing IM would realize the value of learning to write and being creative at it, they would open up a brand new World for themselves. And have much more Success in the long run

        Just my 2 cents

        Thanks again for the share


        - Robert Andrew
        I wholeheartedly agree, tablets and smartphones are a legitimate threat in killing the art of writing completely. And when our youth stop mastering that skill and replace it with OMG and ROFL, it spills over into every other part of our society. It's just sad.

        Thank you for your kind words, by the way....I'm glad I could inspire.
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    • Profile picture of the author kk075
      Originally Posted by neophyte123 View Post

      Thanks for this inspiring post.

      Are you interested in sharing your experience by launching an online course. I'm sure it'll help many of us here.
      Sadly, I'm just too busy to develop a course right now...but I will churn out a book in the near future and get it in circulation. It's been on my to-do list for years but never a top priority.
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  • Profile picture of the author Zeckr
    Nice post. Personal experience stories are the best...no marketing or hype getting in the way.
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    • Profile picture of the author kk075
      Originally Posted by Zeckr View Post

      Nice post. Personal experience stories are the best...no marketing or hype getting in the way.
      Yeah, that's why I didn't mention my company or anything like that...I just wanted to share a genuine story that others could relate to and draw from. Glad you enjoyed it.
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      • Profile picture of the author salegurus
        Originally Posted by kk075 View Post

        Yeah, that's why I didn't mention my company or anything like that...I just wanted to share a genuine story that others could relate to and draw from. Glad you enjoyed it.
        Well maybe you should mention your multi million dollar company, that will keep the doubters busy verifying your story....
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        • Profile picture of the author lgibbon
          Banned
          Originally Posted by salegurus View Post

          Well maybe you should mention your multi million dollar company, that will keep the doubters busy verifying your story....
          Or even his/her own name perhaps.
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          • Profile picture of the author salegurus
            Originally Posted by lgibbon View Post

            Or even his/her own name perhaps.
            Maybe because of this?

            Originally Posted by kk075 View Post

            I don't want to give out my idea since I think it's pretty big, but I'll use this as an example. I'm skilled at something and I want to teach a select number of students that skill. Let's say I want to cap it at 50 students at a time...and those students would be un-enrolled once the course is over. Then I'd send out 50 new invitations for a new round. Does that make sense?
            Maybe i'm just too much of a skeptic but iv'e seen this so many times on these forums.
            Guy/Girl appears from nowhere, has this unbelievable story of rags to riches and then, oh by the way, wants to start teaching their method to "help others"...


            OP could be completely legit, who knows...
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            • Profile picture of the author kk075
              Originally Posted by salegurus View Post




              Maybe i'm just too much of a skeptic but iv'e seen this so many times on these forums.
              Guy/Girl appears from nowhere, has this unbelievable story of rags to riches and then, oh by the way, wants to start teaching their method to "help others"...


              OP could be completely legit, who knows...
              I don't have a rags to riches story at all...The first few paragraphs said how I sold a real world business and got a great job with my state. I also said that I began this journey out of A LOVE FOR WRITING, which means that everything I did was genuine. I wasn't doing this to get rich or get my name out there, my start goal was simply to learn and grow as a writer.

              And honestly, I could have given my name and some web addresses, but I didn't because I see so many folks on here post something like, 'I found a secret to making great money online...check out this amazing blog post!" And then it turns out to be a blog on their website that sells a $79 system to learn digital marketing. If they were truly an expert though, then their first "real post" wouldn't be to sell things to others...it would be to genuinely help. So I figured by NOT promoting my business and NOT promoting myself, I was actually doing this forum a bigger service. My "system" as you put it is not for sale and it is 100% free to use. I call it the "Work your Butt Off Until your Successful Course."

              I am not a millionaire though and I don't have a multi-million dollar business. I clear around $125k a year from my clients and anywhere from $20k-$50k a year from my own forms of affiliate marketing. When I'm slow as a professional then I do more of my own stuff and vise versa.

              To touch on another point that was made, I think only 3 in 100 make it as a writer because they can't see the bigger picture-

              - How do I go from writing $10 articles to $25 articles?
              - How do I go from a writer to an SEO professional?
              - How do I go from an SEO professional to a marketer?

              The 97 out of 100 just want a paycheck...but they don't want to work at Walmart to get that. So many here say, "How can I make my first $100 to get started?" That's easy. You walk to the nearest gas station and you get a job. And when you're not working at that job, you'll study search optimization and online marketing and how a squeeze letter works and hundreds of other things...and you'll keep working at that gas station until you have two full time incomes....one from your job and one from your hobby.

              People intentionally overlook that part of the story though because they think, "This guy had it so easy and I want to be like him." Nothing was easy though and I spent years barely scraping by. But I worked and studied and went so far above and beyond for all my clients, that they couldn't help but recommend me to others. And then I studied all those different business models and told my clients what was working for them and what wasn't...and that's how I became who I am today. It was years and years of hard work though, make no mistake about that.

              At this point in my career, I can conservatively bill my clients $125k a year...so it's hard to start new projects. I just have very little time left at the end of the day, so I think about ideas that can be huge and I usually play with them in my mind for months before doing anything about it. I joined this forum to talk about those ideas but I found so many people saying, "How do I become an overnight sensation?" And after answering the same question twenty times in twenty different forums...only to have that person ask, "But how do I get rich TODAY?" I decided to tell my story.

              If you want to become one of those 3% types of people I talked about, then you'll ignore everything I said about making money in my post. Instead, you'll read my story again and look at why I failed at some things, why I gave up on certain ideas and why I was so successful in others. And then you'll take that initial advice, research how I did it and create something much better than I did....because you did your homework and you know what works these days. That's how you become a superstar.

              And for the record, the local marketing idea I gave is pure gold. Find a local niche where there's not much competition, build a site around it and generate leads. Then reach out to real-world businesses in that niche and sell them the leads. Very simple stuff where you can make $100k+ a year if you do it right. For that to happen though, you have to have a great website with lots of fresh niche information. You have to call every lead and know enough about the industry to give them genuine advice. You have to know the businesses to convert that lead, and you have to know the pricing. So it's a full time job where attention to detail is key...but it's a six-figure income that ANYONE could have today.

              But most people won't do it...because it's a lot of work. So thy keep looking for that system where they pay $100 and someone does everything for them, and then they can collect thousands every month for going to the beach. Why would anyone do that though? Why wouldn't they keep those thousands for themselves if their system was doing all the work? If a program like that even existed then that marketer wouldn't have to sell anything...but people don't get that. They drink the Kool-Aid and start to believe in fairy tales....and they fall into the 97%.

              So my entire original post was meant to say this- don't drink the Kool-Aid!

              Just find something that you're good at, work a thousand hours and use every second as a learning experience. And then do something better, work another thousand hours and learn from that too. Because there is serious. life-changing money to be made online but you won't find the "secret" today...you'll just find step one. And step one is to work your butt off while learning your trade. That's how you fall into that golden 3%...by working and learning and working some more.
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              • Profile picture of the author Phil Wilkinson
                There are many nuggets of wisdom to take from all that you've written here.

                The two biggest for me:

                If you want to be 'successful' be prepared to work your butt off...harder than your competition, and look at each failure as bringing you one step closer to succeeding.

                Focus on how you can help others. Zig Zigler said "You can get everything you want in life if you just help enough other people get what they want."

                Thanks for taking the time to share.
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                • Profile picture of the author kk075
                  Originally Posted by Phil Wilkinson View Post

                  There are many nuggets of wisdom to take from all that you've written here.

                  The two biggest for me:

                  If you want to be 'successful' be prepared to work your butt off...harder than your competition, and look at each failure as bringing you one step closer to succeeding.

                  Focus on how you can help others. Zig Zigler said "You can get everything you want in life if you just help enough other people get what they want."

                  Thanks for taking the time to share.
                  You're absolutely right on both accounts, but especially the part about helping others. I wrote a blog post on my site yesterday about this experience and how much traffic it created by helping others with absolutely no expectation in return. Now, if I came here and did the typical, "Buy my Amazing eBook" like so many others, we never would have had this conversation in the first place. So I'd much rather keep my advice free and let my local clients see me for who I am.

                  So hopefully others can start to realize that by genuinely trying to help folks here, they will show appreciation and go out of their way to help you back. Thank you for the compliment as well; I genuinely appreciate it.
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            • Profile picture of the author discrat
              Originally Posted by salegurus View Post



              Maybe i'm just too much of a skeptic but iv'e seen this so many times on these forums.
              Guy/Girl appears from nowhere, has this unbelievable story of rags to riches and then, oh by the way, wants to start teaching their method to "help others"...

              I hear you. But I felt like this was not the case here. Seemed pretty legit imo


              - Robert Andrew
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              • Profile picture of the author kk075
                Originally Posted by discrat View Post

                I hear you. But I felt like this was not the case here. Seemed pretty legit imo


                - Robert Andrew
                To quote Taylor Swift, "Them haters gonna hate, hate, hate, hate, hate."

                The part that he missed was that "my method" is not for sale, because it's simply to learn, work hard, and stop doubting yourself. I have nothing to gain by people accepting that or ignoring it...it's simply free advice from someone in the industry that's had some success.
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                • Profile picture of the author salegurus
                  Originally Posted by kk075 View Post

                  To quote Taylor Swift, "Them haters gonna hate, hate, hate, hate, hate."
                  Childish to say the least.
                  You do know that differing opinions are allowed on this forum? Just because there are some of us who dare to question it does not make us "haters"...

                  Although you don't have to, you have provided zero proof of your exploits. So tell me, should i blindly believe everything i read online, do you?

                  All i did was raise the possibility that your story may or may not be the whole truth, so call me whatever you want that's not going to deter me from expressing my opinion...
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                  • Profile picture of the author DubDubDubDot
                    Originally Posted by salegurus View Post

                    All i did was raise the possibility that your story may or may not be the whole truth
                    It isn't just this thread. He is doing it elsewhere:

                    http://www.warriorforum.com/main-int...t-content.html

                    In that thread he claims to have done consulting work for a company that sells dating advice through email and that they do a two day gross of $10,000,000+. Obviously the claim is beyond stupid.

                    This guy is trying way too hard to build a forum persona up way too quickly.
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                  • Profile picture of the author kk075
                    Originally Posted by salegurus View Post

                    Childish to say the least.
                    You do know that differing opinions are allowed on this forum? Just because there are some of us who dare to question it does not make us "haters"...

                    Although you don't have to, you have provided zero proof of your exploits. So tell me, should i blindly believe everything i read online, do you?

                    All i did was raise the possibility that your story may or may not be the whole truth, so call me whatever you want that's not going to deter me from expressing my opinion...
                    It's funny that you found that but completely missed the 10+ paragraphs I wrote responding directly to your comment. If you don't want to believe me then that's perfectly fine, but others have taken it a few steps further here and seem angry that I'm teaching people without collecting from them.

                    I'm not sure how that became so offensive on a forum where people can share their opinions...
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                    • Profile picture of the author Joe Broon
                      This is a fascinating thread and I found the OP's post absolutely inspiring and it has already sparked off some major light bulb moments in my head. I will be using and adapting his (I am assuming they are a 'he') experiences and tailoring it to my business.

                      I also find it interesting that some people read this thread like me, are inspired by it and think how they can use the information and take positive action while others are so cynical and want to pull it apart and determined not to get anything positive from it all.

                      I think the OP is a superb writer and his replies have been intelligent, articulate and knowledgeable enough to more than prove his credentials.

                      Thank you for taking the time to share your knowledge and experiences. I really appreciate it.

                      If there is anything I can do for you in return please don't hesitate to ask.

                      Regards

                      Joe
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                      • Profile picture of the author morg2k2
                        Its awesome to see a good share of real world hard work.
                        Normally people here are just seeking shortcuts, how to get rich schemes, how to trick google and adsense...


                        If we take a look at the WSOs there are loads of it...


                        If someone says to get richer you need to work 14-16 hours per day , you will be called nuts or something!


                        I think the main issue of the majority of the people joining the 97% faction is because of two main reasons:


                        1) Cannot Focus in their Goal.
                        2) Don´t want to leave their comfort zone.


                        Many people loves to speak about IM, make money, be an affiliate but in the end of the day 99% of them just want to receive their monthly paycheck. IM will be just an hobbies and this is because many marketers do not want to leave their comfort zone.


                        Another issue that I can easily identify is the fact of many Marketers do not have an extended knowledge about the niche they are supposedly experts about... that is the beginning of the end and that´s why the majority of the articles that we see everywhere are just crap. So how can a person seeking for a solution give credibility to websites like those?


                        One thing I have learned: There are no "GET RICH" buttons to press and in the next day you are the new Millionaire!

                        Morg
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            • Profile picture of the author MichaelBartley
              Originally Posted by salegurus View Post

              Maybe because of this?



              Maybe i'm just too much of a skeptic but iv'e seen this so many times on these forums.
              Guy/Girl appears from nowhere, has this unbelievable story of rags to riches and then, oh by the way, wants to start teaching their method to "help others"...


              OP could be completely legit, who knows...
              I agree. However I was trained by a guru and all I did was call and complain about thinking I was being scammed. I got a flight, hotel, training and a brand new income out of it. So I cannot rule out that people will in fact "help you" even if it looks salesy.
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              • Profile picture of the author kk075
                Originally Posted by MichaelBartley View Post

                I agree. However I was trained by a guru and all I did was call and complain about thinking I was being scammed. I got a flight, hotel, training and a brand new income out of it. So I cannot rule out that people will in fact "help you" even if it looks salesy.
                There are some folks who genuinely hate me here because I don't sell advice, but Salesgurus is not one of them. We clashed a little bit early on but he's one of the good guys here, and we've talked a little to work out our differences.

                For the record though, I'm not a guru by any means...I'm just a hard worker that refuses to accept failure as an option.
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  • Profile picture of the author Marco Moeschter
    Great story thanks for sharing it. I guess it will inspire a lot of marketers here to really see what it is like to be an entrepreneur.

    There will be always change and if you go with it you'll be the one who succeed. That's what I took out of this article.
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    • Profile picture of the author kk075
      Originally Posted by Marco Moeschter View Post

      Great story thanks for sharing it. I guess it will inspire a lot of marketers here to really see what it is like to be an entrepreneur.

      There will be always change and if you go with it you'll be the one who succeed. That's what I took out of this article.
      Mainly I was just trying to show that the way I succeeded was a long and bumpy road where I tried lots of things, made lots of mistakes and met a lot of great people along the way.

      I think people get so caught up in "I need to have the best list or the best affiliate to successful" but it's really not that at all; it's being able to step outside the box, get creative and do something that you're passionate about.
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  • Profile picture of the author Ben West
    Seems like the moral of this story is work hard and don't get lazy at the first sign of success. Thank you for sharing.
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    • Profile picture of the author Cybria
      Thanks for sharing your story. A friend pointed me to this thread. So, honesty time: You're right that not everyone is cut out for freelance writing. I'm a freelance writer and hell, I'll even admit that I'm not cut out for it. This line of work is a grind. It takes an extraordinary level of focus and a tremendous amount of commitment, both of which I'm naturally averse to. To be honest I've been waffling for the past several years I've been in online marketing and writing. I'm a very good writer and I've gained a lot of experience in IM, but I haven't been working even close to full capacity. If I had, then I would have been a millionaire thrice over by now. Now that I'm older I realize how big a difference commitment really makes. Some people naturally have the focus and drive to succeed...others like me need to be put under pressure and/or backed into a corner before they buckle down. I'm studying copywriting now and it's been an amazing learning experience. New life experiences have given me a new found sense of commitment that I haven't had in the past. Your post reinforced a lot of the realizations I've had lately about how I need to get serious about writing and marketing if I really want my dreams to come true. I appreciate you sharing your experience. Totally appreciate it.
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      • Profile picture of the author kk075
        Originally Posted by Cybria View Post

        I'm a freelance writer and hell, I'll even admit that I'm not cut out for it.
        Everyone has days where they feel like pulling their hair out and giving up, so don't think you're alone there. Just try to get yourself on a solid writing schedule and stick with it...even when you don't have any paid clients lined up. As long as you keep writing, then opportunities will present themselves.
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        • Profile picture of the author Cybria
          Originally Posted by kk075 View Post

          Everyone has days where they feel like pulling their hair out and giving up, so don't think you're alone there. Just try to get yourself on a solid writing schedule and stick with it...even when you don't have any paid clients lined up. As long as you keep writing, then opportunities will present themselves.
          Thank you for that. I take your advice to heart. You're really building up good karma here.

          I wanted to ask, did you get all of your current jobs due to your elance reputation? If not, what marketing/networking did you do outside of elance?
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          • Profile picture of the author kk075
            Originally Posted by Cybria View Post

            Thank you for that. I take your advice to heart. You're really building up good karma here.

            I wanted to ask, did you get all of your current jobs due to your elance reputation? If not, what marketing/networking did you do outside of elance?
            Nope, Elance is only good for Elance...so you'll want to make a few complete profiles ASAP. You can do that on your own website, but you also need a strong presence on Google+ and LinkedIn. Fill out absolutely every possible category to make a more complete looking profile, and then ask your better clients to write reviews for you (which, in my experience, means that I'd write the review for my client and then ask....is this okay for you to say about me?) Post these on all your online profiles as well and place a link to your main "about me" page in all of your email signatures, business cards and anywhere else you have a web presence.

            Other than that, my best advice would be to learn how businesses these days post ads (Monster, Craigslist, ProBlogger and the numerous specialty sites for writing/ There are dozens of them) Then, make sure you're completely different from the average applicant because you have to realize, these people are getting 200+ requests for every project they post. Most sound like (I'm using an example of a law firm here)-

            Hi! I am a professional writer and an SEO expert. I can write great articles about law and I am very dependable. Please see my links below (and then there are 20 links to various sites...none of them authoritative and only one or two relating to law).) I charge $25 per article and I can write 3 per day.

            Then here's what I would send...after I visited the client's site, got a feel for their content, and learned all I could about their audience-

            Hey Don- My name is kk075 and I appreciate you posting your ad on <site.com>. I would really love to help you with writing some blogs but before I could do that, we really need to optimize some other huge issues on your site first. For example, there's no contact information on your homepage and there's absolutely no call to action anywhere, which is probably why you aren't seeing any new leads at all. I also noticed that you haven't even registered for Google Places for Business, which would be a goldmine for your law firm.

            While I'd love to write copy for your site, it would be worthless to you if the other changes are not completed beforehand. Please let me know if you need any additional help/advice for making this happen.


            In other words, I didn't say, "Hi Don, I'm an expert." I showed him, and in the process I had him visit my profile to see how I fixed this for others. So without me even throwing out a price or really asking for the writing job, I've become Don's #1 candidate. Then we'll have a phone conversation so I can educate Don for free, and he will end up asking me about hourly rates. Since he knows I'm the real deal, he expects a big number and he's wiling to pay it.

            Surprisingly though, hardly anyone ever does this....because they didn't read about it in a "guru writing course". Honestly, everyone from programmers to writers to PPC and SEO experts should be doing this, because talk is cheap...you have to prove your value to catch a client's attention.

            Also, you'll notice that I didn't say a thing about law in my email...because I didn't want him to qualify me on that. Which worked out well because I don't have any law samples, and Don won't care because I've proved my worth in other ways. If I wrote just a standard pitch like everyone else though, then I probably wouldn't have been in his top 50 candidates.

            I hope that helps!
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            • Profile picture of the author Hubby
              Couldn't agree more with your style and giving free solid advice. I did seo for a short time, started out on Fiverr and got my first client instantly. Went way overboard helping him with his company's website and it floored me how many referrals he gave me, and how many referrals those referrals gave me. My fee was $150 a month for each one, they gladly paid it and got results. BUT then Google changed things and I decided I wanted to do something else and moved on. I can't stop reading your posts and all of them reveal your genuineness and thank you for not trying to sell something at the end of each post! Great sharing, you could almost write a book just combining your posts today! Thank you very much.
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  • Profile picture of the author serraniche
    Very few guys out there have that kind of story to tell, tks for sharing!
    No need to edit and yes, it came from your heart no doubt. Enough valuable lessons to write an IM ebook
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  • Profile picture of the author dsouravs
    Originally Posted by kk075 View Post

    Anyway, I hope that helped...I just gave you at least a dozen ways to make the money you're looking for. And if you fall into that golden 2-3% of the writers/marketers out there that I worked so hard to find for years, then who knows...the sky is the limit.
    Do you have any suggestion or idea for a web designer? Thank you Your post is really inspiring.
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    I can convert your Non-Responsive website to Responsive website ... How sweet is that? :)

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    • Profile picture of the author kk075
      Originally Posted by dsouravs View Post

      Do you have any suggestion or idea for a web designer? Thank you Your post is really inspiring.
      Yes, find a mentor to teach you online marketing. To do that, just reach out to people who are already successful and say, "Hey, I'm broke but I have a killer work ethic and I want to be successful. So let me build a site for you for free for you next project AND I don't even want a cut of the profits. I just want to learn the business end of marketing and work hard to be successful."

      Then you soak up everything that person does like a sponge....and then you think about what they did for weeks. Where did they get their traffic? Which of their pages converted the best? Why did they convert so well? Where did they get their product ideas from? How well did they implement it? What could I do better if I was running that exact same project?

      And once you can answer all of those questions and more, you build your own site. Maybe it's the same idea or maybe its not, but you'll have all the tools to start. Once you start, then you go back to your mentor and ask, "What could I do here to grow quicker?" Or if he/she doesn't want to help you, then you find another mentor with the exact same offer...you build them a site in exchange for their knowledge. And then you tweak your personal site, try a few different things and eventually find a groove.

      As a web builder, you have a skill that every marketer needs. So either use that skill to make cash per site, or use it to gain knowledge. Either way, you win.
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      • Profile picture of the author McHoffa
        Originally Posted by kk075 View Post

        Yes, find a mentor to teach you online marketing. To do that, just reach out to people who are already successful and say, "Hey, I'm broke but I have a killer work ethic and I want to be successful. So let me build a site for you for free for you next project AND I don't even want a cut of the profits. I just want to learn the business end of marketing and work hard to be successful."

        Then you soak up everything that person does like a sponge....and then you think about what they did for weeks. Where did they get their traffic? Which of their pages converted the best? Why did they convert so well? Where did they get their product ideas from? How well did they implement it? What could I do better if I was running that exact same project?

        And once you can answer all of those questions and more, you build your own site. Maybe it's the same idea or maybe its not, but you'll have all the tools to start. Once you start, then you go back to your mentor and ask, "What could I do here to grow quicker?" Or if he/she doesn't want to help you, then you find another mentor with the exact same offer...you build them a site in exchange for their knowledge. And then you tweak your personal site, try a few different things and eventually find a groove.

        As a web builder, you have a skill that every marketer needs. So either use that skill to make cash per site, or use it to gain knowledge. Either way, you win.
        I guess that's what I need to do. I am a web developer by trade, and just trying to get into IM and find the right place to throw myself into the river. I have done well working for myself in web development for the past 4 years, but I know there are opportunities out there to make much more.
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  • Profile picture of the author Alex Sol
    Awesome story, man!

    And I see why everyone wanted to hire you. Your writing is super engaging and I couldn't stop reading your post till I got to the very end

    Now, your number of only 3% of writers sticking to it... I think it applies to all "online marketers". Most of us are looking for a quick reward. When I made my first 5 figure months as an affiliate marketer - I also stopped for a while because I was "rich"... I know better now

    Once again, thanks for sharing.
    - Alex
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    Alex Sol, Full time online marketer since 2007
    The Extra Paycheck Blog | Extra Paycheck Podcast
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    • Profile picture of the author kk075
      Originally Posted by Alex Sol View Post

      Awesome story, man!

      And I see why everyone wanted to hire you. Your writing is super engaging and I couldn't stop reading your post till I got to the very end

      Now, your number of only 3% of writers sticking to it... I think it applies to all "online marketers". Most of us are looking for a quick reward. When I made my first 5 figure months as an affiliate marketer - I also stopped for a while because I was "rich"... I know better now

      Once again, thanks for sharing.
      - Alex
      That's exactly what I was trying to communicate as well...you can only be truly successful if you have the drive and determination to keep doing bigger and better things. For example, I'm working on my own affiliate site now that is so far out of the box, it's either going to make me $5 million next year or I'll be called the biggest idiot who ever lived. Either way though, I'll be happy to share it once the site goes live.
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  • It appears that I have not yet posted enough on the forum to thank you for this fantastic post. So I wanted to take a minute to do so in writing.

    Your story shows true work ethic and commitment to your passion, many should take great comfort in this. The reality of success is hard work, dedication, commitment and persistence, there really aren't many overnight success stories.

    This journey is one of ups and downs, which gives us all courage to pursue our true life goals. Thank you once more. Keep up the great writing
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    • Profile picture of the author natethegreat7037
      Awesome post.

      It's also saddening in the sense that sometimes I really wish I knew what I was good at or excelled in, so maybe I could get started on a similar journey.

      I guess maybe an important thing to take away from this is that you can go as far as you believe you're capable of going. I don't really have all the answers right now, but quality posts like these definitely keep me encouraged to take that next step and keep trying.

      Maybe I'm capable of making way more money than I think I can. I should believe in myself more.



      I guess the only question I have is, how many PM's did you get after making this thread? haha.
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      Success leaves clues.

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      • Profile picture of the author AwanR
        Originally Posted by natethegreat7037 View Post

        .........
        It's also saddening in the sense that sometimes I really wish I knew what I was good at or excelled in, so maybe I could get started on a similar journey.
        .........
        I think most of people suffer on this part.
        Would love to know if anyone could share more about this

        Cheers,
        Awan
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    • Profile picture of the author metabolizer
      I am deeply touched by your work, and diligence. Thank you for your article.
      I am just starting out as becoming a world authority in wellness, and would love to speak with you about my new project I am looking to embark on.
      Please skype me - adam.khedoori I am on sydney time but up at weird hours.
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    • Profile picture of the author tina9451
      Just got this story in my mail inbox and couldn't resist myself from reading it.
      indeed it's very inspirational. I have been worked for SEO Services company and I could actually relate myself with you,. thanks
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  • Originally Posted by kk075 View Post

    .....So here's the best piece of advice you'll ever hear- Google has never changed. Not one bit. They only got better at meeting their original objective of making the site with the best content appear in the #1 slot, and you can't do that by trying to optimize for Google. Instead, optimize your sites for the people you're trying to connect with...and then Google will see your value. If you do that, then no Penguin or Panda update in the world can touch you.....
    I loved this part and think its great advice - I read it 3 times as soon as I saw it. As someone who has built hundreds of wordpress blogs/sites trying to game Google into giving me traffic until I finally gave up, I can attest to the fact that even though we may have heard this before, it goes in one ear and out the other. So this bears repeating and soaking this in. This should be kept in mind for every piece of content you put on the internet. Even though I "knew" this information, I still later attempted to create a site with trying to please Google in mind, mostly due to bad habits taught to me by "mentors" who said that that's what you should do. Forget all that and just write for the people you're trying to reach. That IS the most important thing to remember - even when you forget.
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  • Profile picture of the author moneyneed
    Thanks for this awesome story. Its very inspiring. I know what to do now as a writer. Wish you success in all your future endeavours.
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  • Profile picture of the author Boonqueesha
    You're a true inspiration for me, man. Thanks a lot for posting your story. It was well worth the read. Congratulations on all your success!
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  • Profile picture of the author ninosem
    Awesome story...confirming that success does not come overnight. It need to invest time, efforts, work and consistence.

    If you don't stop buying course after course and start focusing on one method and mastering it and making it successful, then you will never get anything done
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  • Profile picture of the author mohshag
    nice and motivating.
    I liked the "Google never changed" part.
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  • Profile picture of the author NewParadigm
    You mentioned you moved into gross sales commission to rack up some bigger numbers. How did you track the lead that converted into an eventual sale? The honor system with client? thanks.
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    In a moment of decision the best thing you can do is the right thing. The worst thing you can do is nothing. ~ Theodore Roosevelt "Trust, BUT VERIFY" ~ Ronald Reagan

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    • Profile picture of the author kk075
      Originally Posted by NewParadigm View Post

      You mentioned you moved into gross sales commission to rack up some bigger numbers. How did you track the lead that converted into an eventual sale? The honor system with client? thanks.
      That's why I qualified all the leads myself and talked to potential customers before I gave the lead out. Then I'd assign the lead and follow up again a few days later to make sure everything was moving smoothly.

      If they weren't converting though, then that business wasn't getting any more leads. If they were dishonest, then they weren't getting any more leads. And since I made it well known that I was following up with every customer anyway, I've never had any real problems. Most of the people I dealt with were honest and thankful for the extra work.

      You have to realize though that you set a commission percentage and most businesses have advertising built into their prices to begin with. So this wasn't a net loss for them, it was a net gain...and my fees were passed right along to the customer.
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  • Profile picture of the author hardworker2013
    Interesting story but it may be a fiction of your imagination, i cannot see how you made the
    million though! LOL
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    • Profile picture of the author discrat
      Originally Posted by hardworker2013 View Post

      Interesting story but it may be a fiction of your imagination, i cannot see how you made the
      million though! LOL
      It has occurred overtime. You might be surprised that there are people who work hard enough and are smart enough to do this.

      Maybe if you used your own imagination and put it to WORK it may happen to you


      - Robert Andrew
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      • Profile picture of the author DubDubDubDot
        Originally Posted by discrat View Post

        It has occurred overtime. You might be surprised that there are people who work hard enough and are smart enough to do this.

        Maybe if you used your own imagination and put it to WORK it may happen to you
        Making $1 million over time isn't an outrageous claim, but I think these kind of threads draw skepticism (and probably a lot more than the replies suggest) because they are so vague. IMO, success story threads without any tangible specifics belong in the Mind Warriors sub-forum. The thread has no value in a business sense.
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        • Profile picture of the author kilgore
          Originally Posted by DubDubDubDot View Post

          Making $1 million over time isn't an outrageous claim, but I think these kind of threads draw skepticism (and probably a lot more than the replies suggest) because they are so vague. IMO, success story threads without any tangible specifics belong in the Mind Warriors sub-forum. The thread has no value in a business sense.
          Totally agree. These sorts of "motivational" let-me-show-you-how-successful-i-am threads have absolutely zero business value -- well, perhaps except to the original postsers who often seem to have a well-timed WSO launch at about the same time they're posting their "inspirational" claptrap.

          Judging by the comments, however, it does seem that we are in the minority here -- a lot of people for whatever reason seem to enjoy this sort of drivel, maybe because they don't actually make anything but like to dream about it. Even so, I agree that the "Mind Warriors" forum would be a good place for these kinds of posts though juding by the amount of threads that have no business value on the main IM forum (e.g., "When did you quit your day job?", "How did you make your first $1?", "What software do you use to wipe your behind?", etc.) my guess is that this isn't a change we'll be seeing anytime soon.
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          • Profile picture of the author kk075
            Originally Posted by kilgore View Post

            Totally agree. These sorts of "motivational" let-me-show-you-how-successful-i-am threads have absolutely zero business value -- well, perhaps except to the original postsers who often seem to have a well-timed WSO launch at about the same time they're posting their "inspirational" claptrap.

            Judging by the comments, however, it does seem that we are in the minority here -- a lot of people for whatever reason seem to enjoy this sort of drivel, maybe because they don't actually make anything but like to dream about it. Even so, I agree that the "Mind Warriors" forum would be a good place for these kinds of posts though juding by the amount of threads that have no business value on the main IM forum (e.g., "When did you quit your day job?", "How did you make your first $1?", "What software do you use to wipe your behind?", etc.) my guess is that this isn't a change we'll be seeing anytime soon.
            Maybe that's because I showed people exactly how I made that money AND answered every intelligent question asked here so far, which is far more than some have EVER given in this forum. I'm not sure why that makes some folks want to keep trolling but hey, I guess I can understand why a few would be angry that I'm helping others WITHOUT trying to sell people anything.
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            • Profile picture of the author natethegreat7037
              If you don't mind me asking,kk075, when you were paid on sales from leads you helped generate, how did you make sure you were actually paid?

              It seemed like the contractors could easily give you any amount of money, or just not at all? Did you just use an honor system or have a specific system in place?
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              Success leaves clues.

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              • Profile picture of the author kk075
                Originally Posted by natethegreat7037 View Post

                If you don't mind me asking,kk075, when you were paid on sales from leads you helped generate, how did you make sure you were actually paid?

                It seemed like the contractors could easily give you any amount of money, or just not at all? Did you just use an honor system or have a specific system in place?
                I already answered this exact question somewhere on this thread, so this is the short answer...I followed up the leads myself and I only worked with contractors I could trust. So part honor system, part trust...but I still called every lead before passing it along and again a few days later to make sure the work was being done properly.

                You can scroll upwards to find the longer answer though.
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          • Profile picture of the author Sid Hale
            Good for you!!!

            Originally Posted by kilgore View Post

            Judging by the comments, however, it does seem that we are in the minority here -- a lot of people for whatever reason seem to enjoy this sort of drivel
            Light bulb moment.

            Even so, I agree that the "Mind Warriors" forum would be a good place for these kinds of posts though juding by the amount of threads that have no business value on the main IM forum (e.g., "When did you quit your day job?", "How did you make your first $1?", "What software do you use to wipe your behind?", etc.) my guess is that this isn't a change we'll be seeing anytime soon.
            Right again.
            With your vast amount of experience here (about a year, right?), you seem to have decided what topics are valid for this forum. There is nowhere in the rules that stipulate what may/may not be included in this "Internet Marketing Discussion Forum".

            Personally, I have always thought of this as the "General" Forum, or the "Main" Forum. It's obvious from the number of posts in this forum vs. the others, that most of the members feel the same. Have you not picked up on that, yet?

            I think most members (certainly the "newbies") never even find the other forums, and begin to feel at home here. Given that audience - this is EXACTLY the right forum for the OP.

            EDIT - While I selected portions of your post to quote... this post isn't directed only at you. I hope the others pick up on this, as well.
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            Coming Soon... Rapid Action Profits (Pro)

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  • Profile picture of the author andorod77
    This was truly an amazing post, its true that you can find the latest "trick" to rank your webpage higher on Google, but only the websites that truly deliver content that is high quality to the people are the websites who stay at the top.
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  • Profile picture of the author AntonioSeegars1
    Elance is a underutilized source for making money online. As well as every other freelance site online. Congrats to you for outsourcing without underpaying people to do so. I hate when I hear stories about people outsourcing writing work to mturk and paying people around $2.50 to write a 500 word article.
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    • Profile picture of the author kk075
      Originally Posted by AntonioSeegars1 View Post

      Elance is a underutilized source for making money online. As well as every other freelance site online. Congrats to you for outsourcing without underpaying people to do so. I hate when I hear stories about people outsourcing writing work to mturk and paying people around $2.50 to write a 500 word article.
      The way I saw it (and still do), we should not be in the business of trying to create jobs for people. It's hard to get inspired to punch a time clock and collect your weekly pay, because the opportunities for advancement are small and there's all kinds of competition. So I've always thought- why don't we try to give people careers and let them decide how much they're worth? Let them define their own value through quality and production.

      Folks would be amazed at how much more loyal your employees become when you say, "How much do you want to make this week?" So that's what I've always tried to do...give them most of the profit and let them work towards taking over the client outright. And that works well for me too because it lets me chase after bigger clients while having a solid safety net at the same time.

      Thanks for the compliment though...I appreciate it.
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  • Profile picture of the author Joe Lumbergh
    awesome story. I wish I will crack the 1M line at some point in my life with affiliate marketing.

    A man can dream
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  • Profile picture of the author AwanR
    Hi kk,

    Thank you for great sharing!
    I also start in as freelance, so I can relate mostly to what your saying.
    Eventhough I start as wordpress installer then move to front end programming and then project manager, but I haven't arrived at your success yet.

    I was about to pm you, but then I think it will be beneficial to other to ask in the thread instead.

    You said:

    Originally Posted by kk075 View Post

    .....
    Because even back then I understood that writing articles wasn't really about SEO or what Google wanted to see, it was about connecting businesses to people. And to do that, you don't focus on what the business says...you focus on what their customers would ultimately want to hear.
    .....
    How can you find out the thing that "business customer want to hear?"

    Could you please elaborate more, perhaps with example?

    Thanks much for sharing!

    Cheers,
    Awan
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    • Profile picture of the author kk075
      Originally Posted by AwanR View Post

      How can you find out the thing that "business customer want to hear?"

      Could you please elaborate more, perhaps with example?
      It's not necessarily what customers want to hear, it's what they want to happen out of hiring you. If you scroll up towards the top of page two, I gave an example of how I bid on jobs and show my authority without saying, "I'm an expert."

      At the end of the day though, people buy websites because they want to make more money. They trust you to give them the skills to make money with that website, but 99% of businesses could care less about the customer after they make that first sale....they just want to get paid and say goodbye. If the customer doesn't see additional traffic and revenue from their website though, then they're definitely not going to ever call you again or recommend you.

      So if you want to grow, teach your customers how to use their sites to make money. Teach them the basics of SEO, tell them about building lists and smart marketing campaigns, show why blogging matters and explain the benefits of social and local presences. They don't know any of this stuff so it's your chance to shine.
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  • Profile picture of the author Jennifer Hutson
    Wow, this was especially inspiring for me. As a full-time freelance writer, I drew so many similarities between our situations...except I'm just you 10 years ago

    I had no idea what I was doing when I first started out freelancing and my first job was re-writing a recipe for $10. Over the next few years, I created great tricks for winning more jobs, learned how to woo clients and raised my rates several times, ultimately developing a solid list of regular clients.

    About three years ago, I had a Russian client who I copyedited a "Make Money From Home" product for. Looking back, it was super scammy but it was the first time I had been introduced to the idea of IM and I was hypnotized by it.

    I immediately started learning everything I possibly could. I devoured everything I could get my hands on – methods, SEO, list-building, you name it.

    Unfortunately, I also developed an acute case of shiny object syndrome and would allow myself to get caught up in how great a method sounded before moving onto another as soon as I read about it.

    This continued for about two years until I finally decided to take real action. Ironically, I tried out one of my own ideas that was not related to anything I had read and it worked!

    Today, I'm still writing full-time but completely transitioning into marketing is becoming more of a compelling desire every day. I run some affiliate campaigns in my spare time and am creating my first product (graphics-related, my second passion).

    As soon as I'm done with writing work for the day, I go straight to working on my graphics pack and researching the best ways to get affiliates, how to structure OTOs, etc. I just want to learn, learn, learn.

    Perhaps I will also re-invent myself

    I only hope to achieve as much success as you have. Thank you for such an inspiring story – you've really encouraged me to continue pushing myself the way I know I need to in order to find success.
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    • Profile picture of the author kk075
      Originally Posted by Jennifer Hutson View Post

      Wow, this was especially inspiring for me. As a full-time freelance writer, I drew so many similarities between our situations...except I'm just you 10 years ago

      I had no idea what I was doing when I first started out freelancing and my first job was re-writing a recipe for $10. Over the next few years, I created great tricks for winning more jobs, learned how to woo clients and raised my rates several times, ultimately developing a solid list of regular clients.

      About three years ago, I had a Russian client who I copyedited a "Make Money From Home" product for. Looking back, it was super scammy but it was the first time I had been introduced to the idea of IM and I was hypnotized by it.

      I immediately started learning everything I possibly could. I devoured everything I could get my hands on - methods, SEO, list-building, you name it.

      Unfortunately, I also developed an acute case of shiny object syndrome and would allow myself to get caught up in how great a method sounded before moving onto another as soon as I read about it.

      This continued for about two years until I finally decided to take real action. Ironically, I tried out one of my own ideas that was not related to anything I had read and it worked!

      Today, I'm still writing full-time but completely transitioning into marketing is becoming more of a compelling desire every day. I run some affiliate campaigns in my spare time and am creating my first product (graphics-related, my second passion).

      As soon as I'm done with writing work for the day, I go straight to working on my graphics pack and researching the best ways to get affiliates, how to structure OTOs, etc. I just want to learn, learn, learn.

      Perhaps I will also re-invent myself

      I only hope to achieve as much success as you have. Thank you for such an inspiring story - you've really encouraged me to continue pushing myself the way I know I need to in order to find success.
      It sounds like you're definitely on the right track...just stay humble, keep learning and focus on making your writing even better. In time, the bigger money will definitely come. Honestly though, I think moving towards marketing is 100% essential for any writer because you start to see the other side of the coin and what others are hoping to achieve from your services. That's probably where I experienced the most growth overall.
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  • Profile picture of the author maxsi
    Pretty good stuff.
    Our business group is making $75k - $84k per month, but the very best thing is that we do what we LOVE :-) :-) (our passions)
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  • Profile picture of the author skmyna
    Thank you kk075 for sharing your fantastic journey. You dedication and plan should be appreciated. Often people get information overloaded and get tired after jumping from here and there and then quit. Its all about stick to one plan and work continuously. Your real story is very inspiring.
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  • Profile picture of the author kursat
    It does take time but I do agree that you need to look at SEO very very differently than we did 5 years ago. Do not leave Google to make decisions. Anyone can quickly increase traffic from a well build and valuable website. All it would take is to care for clients and make the website optimized for them. Your story is a great education for many here. Thank you for sharing.
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  • Profile picture of the author web lover
    kk075 , Thank You For Sharing Your successful Story , You Are Really struggle man and Professional writer and Online Marketer , I Wish You The Best

    Good Luck ,
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  • Profile picture of the author Roderick Gardner
    kk075 that was a roller coaster ride you have great story I can see why you are one of the top writers I couldn't stop reading .It has made me think about my life and where I want to be . I am not a writer Thanks again for sharing
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  • Profile picture of the author WFDUDE
    Great read kk, I can tell you why a few asses are chapped. It's because the so called GURU'S from back in 2000 were all insane scam artists and they probobly follow the same business model.
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  • Profile picture of the author henryw1981
    Optomizing your site for people and not Google is some of the best advice I have seen on this forum. When doing keyword research I try to think of what people would type in if they had a problem my product could solve. I also try to go for buyer keywords to get the best value from my CTR. By doing this I have raised my conversion percentage nicely.
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  • Profile picture of the author HARSHA4306
    Thanks for sharing the information bro. It really helps. Can any one become a writer ? English is not my first language.
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    • Profile picture of the author kk075
      Originally Posted by HARSHA4306 View Post

      Thanks for sharing the information bro. It really helps. Can any one become a writer ? English is not my first language.
      I'd say almost anyone...it takes work to master your writing style and to be able to connect with people through simple words. The only way to find out though is to start writing your own blog about something you love and see where it leads.
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      • Profile picture of the author bobbylee
        Really amazing story and shows us sky is the limit for hardwroking person. i am a web developer myself and want to check if we can get into some business
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        • Profile picture of the author TMcMahon
          kk075-- Your post and follow-ups has the most genuine feel of anything I have read here in years. I am truly grateful for your wisdom and really appreciate it.

          I'm also amazed at how negative people can be when all you are doing is being helpful. Then most probably wonder why they never succeed.

          I've been lurking here for a while but only joined last year. I rarely post anything because all I ever see is get rich quick deals by some "guru". So that is why I am so impressed by your giving attitude.

          I've had a bit of success, I've actually been online since 1997 and have sites that have gotten 1/2 million uniques a month. So I know the real deal when I see it. I have several websites that are moderately successful and due to my own laziness are pretty much on autopilot.

          Key Statements that Show me You are the real deal:
          1) I know I could probably vastly improve my income if I followed your advice and went back to the basics that I did when I first started.

          2) Only 3% of people are willing to do the real work to succeed. Sounds exactly like what I've seen over the years.

          3) As you've said, there are no shortcuts to Google or Success.

          So Kudos to you for posting this fantastic resource for those who are willing to see it and not hide behind a facade of cynicism. Reminds me of the book How to Get Rich by Felix DennisHow to Get Rich by Felix Dennis in which he shares how he succeeded but then says it was a lot of work and most people won't be willing to do it.
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          • Profile picture of the author kk075
            Originally Posted by TMcMahon View Post

            kk075-- Your post and follow-ups has the most genuine feel of anything I have read here in years. I am truly grateful for your wisdom and really appreciate it.

            I'm also amazed at how negative people can be when all you are doing is being helpful. Then most probably wonder why they never succeed.

            I've been lurking here for a while but only joined last year. I rarely post anything because all I ever see is get rich quick deals by some "guru". So that is why I am so impressed by your giving attitude.

            I've had a bit of success, I've actually been online since 1997 and have sites that have gotten 1/2 million uniques a month. So I know the real deal when I see it. I have several websites that are moderately successful and due to my own laziness are pretty much on autopilot.

            Key Statements that Show me You are the real deal:
            1) I know I could probably vastly improve my income if I followed your advice and went back to the basics that I did when I first started.

            2) Only 3% of people are willing to do the real work to succeed. Sounds exactly like what I've seen over the years.

            3) As you've said, there are no shortcuts to Google or Success.

            So Kudos to you for posting this fantastic resource for those who are willing to see it and not hide behind a facade of cynicism. Reminds me of the book How to Get Rich by Felix Dennis in which he shares how he succeeded but then says it was a lot of work and most people won't be willing to do it.
            Yeah, I kind of felt the same way when I started out here....there were a lot of discussions taking place but nobody really stepped up and said, "Stop micro-managing yourself and just get to work! If you mess up on your first try, then so be it, but your second try will be much more successful."

            And for the record, I am not extremely successful YET. I've made good money and supported my family, sure, but there are always new obstacles in life and new ways to get past them. In many ways though, I'm as much of a noob as anybody here...I'm just a noob that can write and happens to be great with SEO.

            In any case, I'm still learning daily as well and honing my craft as much as I can. Anyone that wants to be in IM should be doing the exact same thing...but it all starts with getting that practical experience in by doing something.
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  • Profile picture of the author HARSHA4306
    Thankyou. I will start my blog.
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  • Profile picture of the author HARSHA4306
    I added you as contact.If I have any questions can l ask you .Your inspired me.
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  • Profile picture of the author Raydal
    Originally Posted by kk075 View Post


    By 2009, I was the #1 grossing writer on Elance BY FAR and I had probably cycled through at least 30 writers of my own. Surprisingly though, only 3 or 4 stuck it out...the rest would become lazy shortly after they received their first few big paychecks.
    This is a great "writer's story". I know it is inspirational for all entrepreneurs,
    but you did mention one of the greatest temptations in the freelance writers
    market, that is slacking off after the money starts rolling in. Even the great
    copywriter Gary Halbert fell for this. He would often stop writing after a
    big winner and only start again when he was broke.

    It's not easy to remain motivated to write when your bank account says
    that you don't NEED to. So it's a pretty common downfall.

    -Ray Edwards
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    • Profile picture of the author kk075
      Originally Posted by Raydal View Post

      This is a great "writer's story". I know it is inspirational for all entrepreneurs,
      but you did mention one of the greatest temptations in the freelance writers
      market, that is slacking off after the money starts rolling in. Even the great
      copywriter Gary Halbert fell for this. He would often stop writing after a
      big winner and only start again when he was broke.

      It's not easy to remain motivated to write when your bank account says
      that you don't NEED to. So it's a pretty common downfall.

      -Ray Edwards
      Heck, I still fall for it from time to time...we all do after a big payday. It is BY FAR the hardest aspect of being an entrepreneur; knowing how to handle the success and keep that drive alive.

      For example, I used to do a decent bit of consulting work for small businesses and the first thing I'd ask was, "What aren't you doing today that you did the first six months of being in business?" And every time, they'd look at me like I was an idiot...and then they'd realize that their routine has completely changed. They're not chasing business anymore, they're not marketing hard on a shoestring budget, and that's why they are struggling....success ultimately ruined them.

      So it's not just us...it's everyone who takes a chance chasing their dream and makes it in the world. I enjoyed your post. =)
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  • Profile picture of the author Nino
    Originally Posted by kk075 View Post

    Then I hit the exact same problem as I did with the writers though; the web developer made a quick $50,000 in two months and thought he was Donald Trump. So he became unreliable, stopped working but still demanded half...and I finally deleted all my content and gave the guy the entire business. Now, he works for a local company making $40k a year as a programmer in a dead end job...and I've been searching for a "web builder" version of me ever since.

    So for now, I'm mainly writing video scripts, email marketing, blogs, eBooks and other marketing content for a few Fortune 500 companies, plus I have my SEO firm focusing solely on generating local leads as well. Almost completely by accident though, I think I learned just about every possible way to make money as a writer/entrepreneur and it has been an amazing journey. And honestly, I do not know what's next...but I will reinvent myself once again to raise the bar even higher. Because that's what a true entrepreneur does.

    Anyway, I hope that helped...I just gave you at least a dozen ways to make the money you're looking for. And if you fall into that golden 2-3% of the writers/marketers out there that I worked so hard to find for years, then who knows...the sky is the limit.
    that's why most internet only entrepreneurs can't go too far, because you can't hire someone, you can't build a trustworthy ranking when you're small, because anyone with a good brain could see the path and choose to walk/copy the path, although i understand that the web developer has chosen the worst path...

    I've experienced this myself and it almost makes me sick... because those idiots can't learn what we know/what we've experienced, and we could be up faster, further together than apart, and I was willing (not anymore) to give a cut but I knew their attitudes will be just to copy/steal and leave me alone in the dark.

    So, to summarize it all and to teach a lesson in a few words: Build an asset! not knowledge... and when you're small don't choose to get many people on board.

    PS. KK075, if you need videos for those scripts, shoot me a message.
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    • Profile picture of the author kk075
      Originally Posted by Nino View Post

      So, to summarize it all and to teach a lesson in a few words: Build an asset! not knowledge... and when you're small don't choose to get many people on board.
      I've always gone for partnerships for that very reason. I know what I'm good at and I know what I'm bad at, so it doesn't make any sense for me to bite off more than I can chew. If I need help and I can't afford it, then I'm looking for a partner who's willing to carry his weight and take a piece of the pie.
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  • Profile picture of the author curiozities
    What an awesome story you have! You could probably take just a part or two out of it, flesh it out a bit, turn it into an info product, and make a mint. Or do the same with everything you know about SEO alone. That's gold right there.

    By the way, is it too late to take that writing test? :-)
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    • Profile picture of the author kk075
      Originally Posted by curiozities View Post

      What an awesome story you have! You could probably take just a part or two out of it, flesh it out a bit, turn it into an info product, and make a mint. Or do the same with everything you know about SEO alone. That's gold right there.

      By the way, is it too late to take that writing test? :-)
      Believe it or not, a few people sent me samples...and they were ridiculously good! I guess because I said that I would completely tear whatever they sent to shreds, they were testing me just as much as I was testing them. So it's definitely harder for me to try and bully someone away once they know what I'm going to do.
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  • Profile picture of the author elmo033057
    kk075,'

    Man, that was awesome! Thanks so much for posting it. I'm going to copy it and read it a couple of times in my "inspirational" file. Once again, thanks so much for the incredible post!

    God Bless!
    ELMO
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    • Profile picture of the author kk075
      Originally Posted by elmo033057 View Post

      kk075,'

      Man, that was awesome! Thanks so much for posting it. I'm going to copy it and read it a couple of times in my "inspirational" file. Once again, thanks so much for the incredible post!

      God Bless!
      ELMO
      When I posted that a few months back, it started out as a reply to someone asking about staying motivated...which is one of the few things in life I've always been good at. But I kept typing away until I realized that I went into so much detail...I didn't know what to do with it. So I said what the heck, posted it as its own thread and was pretty much shocked at the comments that came back. It feels great to help motivate others though so I'm very happy that it was time well spent.

      We're all in the same boat here and honestly, I think this forum would be a whole lot better if people forgot about trying to sell things and just genuinely tried to inspire others around them. There are a select few who HATE me here because I offered free advice though, and I just don't understand why people approach life that way. There are so many opportunities online to make excellent money and help others at the same time.

      Anyway, I genuinely appreciate the compliments. I am very happy that it inspired you.
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  • Profile picture of the author amdtill
    What a beautiful heartfelt article. It's no wonder you are a success.
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  • Profile picture of the author ChrisBa
    Just found this thread. I found it very inspirational. The detail and dedication is amazing. What's next??? Do you have further goals?
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    • Profile picture of the author kk075
      Originally Posted by ChrisBa View Post

      Just found this thread. I found it very inspirational. The detail and dedication is amazing. What's next??? Do you have further goals?
      Definitely. I opened my local web marketing firm late last year and that' slowly starting to take shape. I also believe that I have THE next big social media idea, but I have no idea how to fund it. So a lot of my time has been spent educating myself about how the big boys do it in Silicon Valley. Plus I still have my regular writing/marketing clients and a family so I stay pretty busy.

      You'd probably laugh at my goals in life though. I want to make my kids happy. I want to take great vacations and spoil my wife and help my parents have great retirement years. To me, those are the only goals that matter because they're about making the people around me happy. So it motivates me, and I work my butt off to make sure those goals happen.

      Thank you for your kind comments.
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  • Profile picture of the author PartnerwithJoe
    Originally Posted by kk075 View Post

    Hey everyone. Since I read so many repetitive posts on here about "where to start", I figured that I'd share my personal story for others to draw inspiration and ideas from. While I'm a writer at heart, I've run the full gauntlet in the marketing world with zero formal training, education or experience...so I hope it gives you some clarity on this world.

    I will say that I typed this from start to finish in one sitting though, so please forgive any typos in advance. This came from the heart and I never edit things like that.

    When I first started writing online, it was nothing more than a hobby. I had recently sold a business and I got a cushy state job that I had planned on riding for 20 years into the state pension system, and the last thing I was looking for was a career change. I just wanted to relax, travel with my family and watch the kids grow up.

    I had always loved writing though, so I'd look for small jobs writing content for $5-10 an article on Elance and similar sites. Then I started writing my own articles on the Yahoo Voices network and eventually they made me a feature writer for sports, home improvement and technology. These were 500 word articles that paid $15-20 each and they got syndicated out as well, so I was averaging 10-20k page views per post.

    At that point, I was making around $300 a month just writing to write, but I had also surpassed 3 million page views on Yahoo and people were starting to contact me directly. In fact, one of the first ones was Caribbean Cruise Lines; they offered me $50 per Yahoo blog to talk about the cruising industry and some of their ships. And I thought that was great money until an affiliate marketing company offered me $150 per blog to talk about their various websites...and I think that's when I officially stopped being just another writer.

    Now, at first I thought that they loved me as a writer...and I guess in some ways they did. All they really cared about was my link-juice from a PR10 site and my 1,000+ followers who seemed to comment on every article. (and this was back before we knew comments and on-page times were even a factor). So in a way I was being used for my resources but hey, at $50-100 a pop for 20 minutes of my time, I can live with that.

    From that point forward, I kept writing about sports and technology for $10-20 a pop, but I also took on an extra $300-500 a week from select clients that were contacting me. And then I thought, "I make more money writing 5 hours a week than I do working 40 hours for the state," so I quit my job. Because even back then I understood that writing articles wasn't really about SEO or what Google wanted to see, it was about connecting businesses to people. And to do that, you don't focus on what the business says...you focus on what their customers would ultimately want to hear. Because Google has always said that the site with the best information should always rank #1 overall, and that's why the last 3-4 years of algorithms have focused so heavily on the social metrics of websites (time on site, pages viewed, comments, likes, etc.).

    So here's the best piece of advice you'll ever hear- Google has never changed. Not one bit. They only got better at meeting their original objective of making the site with the best content appear in the #1 slot, and you can't do that by trying to optimize for Google. Instead, optimize your sites for the people you're trying to connect with...and then Google will see your value. If you do that, then no Penguin or Panda update in the world can touch you.

    By 2007, I was ranked the #24 grossing copywriter on Elance simply because my copy converted ridiculously well. I was fortunate enough to get hired by a few awesome SEO companies early on that taught me a whole lot about websites, and because of them my rates steadily increased over time. First it was $15 an hour, then $25, then $40...and I went up in price with new clients every time I had more work than I had time in the week.

    By 2008, I realized that I was working 80 hours a week and never coming up for air, so I completely changed my business model. Instead of doing all the writing myself, I posted ads online for people who wanted to learn online marketing and I asked them for a simple writing sample. I'd say something like, write me a paragraph about the best place on Earth...or the best food you ever eaten...and then I'd reply to those who genuinely impressed me. Even if the content was fantastic though, I'd pick it apart from an SEO and creative standpoint just to see how the writers would respond. If they said, "Thanks for the advice/critiques...it really helped!," I'd take them on as an apprentice. If they defended their work, then I blew them off since they didn't want to truly learn.

    Within six months, I had four writers "in training" and I took every decent priced job on Elance for them to work on. I gave them 50-80% of the revenue (depending on how good they were), kept the rest for my editing/teaching and I promised to give them the clients they worked for directly once they got close to my level. I taught them everything they needed from a business standpoint though; time management, customer service, dealing with jerks, how to properly bid...I handed out complete blueprints.

    By 2009, I was the #1 grossing writer on Elance BY FAR and I had probably cycled through at least 30 writers of my own. Surprisingly though, only 3 or 4 stuck it out...the rest would become lazy shortly after they received their first few big paychecks. Then they'd come back a week later with some super-lame excuse why they disappeared, and like an idiot I'd give them another shot. It taught me a lesson though, most people are not cut out for freelance writing because of the complete freedom. It's hard to stay focused and disciplined when nobody is watching ...maybe only 3 out of 100 aspiring writers have the work ethic. And I'm saying that because I've literally hired/trained a thousand people over the past 7 years, and only 30 stuck with it all the way through. And you know what? Out of those 30, almost all 30 make six figure salaries today...either running an SEO firm or doing their own thing. About a half dozen of them have surpassed me as well and I couldn't be happier for them.

    On the other hand, about 800 of the thousand are still writing $10 articles on and off because they never understood the success they could have by truly committing. As soon as they had a little success, it went to their heads and they would forget that marketing is a business. You have to study, keep up with trends, talk to your customers, constantly market, build your network.....and post lots of content daily. The 800+ just couldn't do that without someone standing over them and telling them to.

    In 2011, I was offered a job with one of the hottest internet marketing firms at the time...and I really struggled with what to do. I was clearing $80k a year doing my own thing and only working 40-50 hours a week, but it was also a massive opportunity to learn from other professionals. Because you have to realize that by this point, I still hadn't worked for any type of newspaper, marketing firm or magazine....I was as freelance as you can get. So I threw out a number that I didn't think they could even consider ($90k a year) and they said yes...if I'd sign a non-compete and drop all my clients.

    Well, this was both the best and the worst decision of my life...because the company laid me off within six months because I didn't want to move to their city and take a big promotion. They did teach me the internet marketing side of the business though and showed me how they made tens of millions a year through affiliates, so I reinvented myself once again....but this time I was 100% broke because I had just bought a huge home.

    From that point on, I went back to Elance (where my reputation had all but died since everything is based on your last 6 months of performance) and started searching for clients. I hit Craigslist, great job boards and everywhere else I could find as well. It was slow going though so I made my first affiliate site, which taught employers how to find freelance writers. Elance and oDesk paid me $50 each per new business sign-up (and $5 per new writer), and I spent about six weeks 100% focused on that site. The first month, it earned $450, and it took in $1650 in month two. I was at $1400 about halfway through month 3 when someone offered to buy the site for $15,000, and I countered with $28,000. We settled at $21,500 and I haven't done an affiliate site since. Because I reinvented myself yet again.

    As a writer, I was worth $40-50 an hour and as a marketer I could bring in double that. But by teaching people to quickly rank their websites and writing their copy, I was coming out closer to the $150/hr range, and my phone was always ringing with new opportunities. It was about that time I started working with someone who was advertising online for local businesses and everything I was doing just clicked...how many industries out there needed more traffic but didn't know how to get it?

    So I started working with a web developer and we built specialty sites for contractors, real estate agents, dentists and all the skilled trades...selling them qualified leads for $100 a pop. And we were getting tons of leads, so we slowly progressed to a percentage of the sale instead of flat rates...which turned out to be huge. Someone got a $30k swimming pool installed and I made 3k, someone bought a $150k home and I got $2k off of the commissions...and these leads were coming in daily. I OWNED the local search results because nobody else was doing this, and the biggest companies in my area would come to me for leads because I'd have the first five slots on Google and they'd be at #6.

    Then I hit the exact same problem as I did with the writers though; the web developer made a quick $50,000 in two months and thought he was Donald Trump. So he became unreliable, stopped working but still demanded half...and I finally deleted all my content and gave the guy the entire business. Now, he works for a local company making $40k a year as a programmer in a dead end job...and I've been searching for a "web builder" version of me ever since.

    So for now, I'm mainly writing video scripts, email marketing, blogs, eBooks and other marketing content for a few Fortune 500 companies, plus I have my SEO firm focusing solely on generating local leads as well. Almost completely by accident though, I think I learned just about every possible way to make money as a writer/entrepreneur and it has been an amazing journey. And honestly, I do not know what's next...but I will reinvent myself once again to raise the bar even higher. Because that's what a true entrepreneur does.

    Anyway, I hope that helped...I just gave you at least a dozen ways to make the money you're looking for. And if you fall into that golden 2-3% of the writers/marketers out there that I worked so hard to find for years, then who knows...the sky is the limit.
    I really appreciate this. The is a lot of confusing information out there if you are getting started online.
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    • Profile picture of the author freddylan
      Thanks a lot great share and a great story. Everybody can escape the rate race with a bit of work
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  • Profile picture of the author TomVa
    WOW you come here and write do a post from the heart and some people rip your head off! Wow wow WOW, Thanks for the great read bud.
    TOM
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  • Profile picture of the author UnstoppableJoy
    This is perhaps the best article I have read in 10 plus years on this forum...... so much wisdom in each line - like this..... "On the other hand, about 800 of the thousand are still writing $10 articles on and off because they never understood the success they could have by truly committing. " I know because I was a huge hit online many years ago and instead of focusing on the basics - I thought I was a magician - that everything I did would turn out as great as my first project - and got his "Donald Trump" syndrome.... and fell as fast as a rock....
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    • Profile picture of the author kk075
      Originally Posted by UnstoppableJoy View Post

      This is perhaps the best article I have read in 10 plus years on this forum...... so much wisdom in each line - like this..... "On the other hand, about 800 of the thousand are still writing $10 articles on and off because they never understood the success they could have by truly committing. " I know because I was a huge hit online many years ago and instead of focusing on the basics - I thought I was a magician - that everything I did would turn out as great as my first project - and got his "Donald Trump" syndrome.... and fell as fast as a rock....
      Hey, I've been there myself and fell face-first because I got too cocky, so I definitely know where you're coming from. We've all been there. Failure is an awesome motivator though and it separates the average Joe's from the true entrepreneurs. Falling down is fine; its the getting back up part and working twice as hard to find success.

      And trust me, I'm great at falling down, but I'm also pretty darn good at getting back up too. Thanks so much for your kind comments though; I'm thrilled that my story inspired you.
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  • Profile picture of the author fly4fun
    Like most of the commenters here, I found this both educational and motivational. My sin has been to learn about a current "strategy", e.g. develop and rank locally focused sites for lead generation circa 2010, but I wouldn't commit to them for fear they weren't legitimate opportunities and it would end up being a waste of my time. As a result, you listed 3-4 different activities that I had once considered and discarded which you went on to pursue with varying degrees of success, simply because you pursued them like a professional.

    Lesson to me: Pick one strategy, niche, etc, work it diligently and accept the risk (ever present to any entrepreneurial endeavor) that it might not pan out. Thanks for the lesson, it was well timed and clearly received!
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  • Profile picture of the author Bruce NewMedia
    Its always nice to read stories like this...keeps many new marketers (and not so new ones) motivated, even inspired...

    I am wondering though, how you accomplished this 'commission sharing' with licensed real estate agents, unless you are a licensed RE agent also? (it's illegal to do this with a non-licensed person in every state).

    OP wrote: "...and we were getting tons of leads, so we slowly progressed to a percentage of the sale instead of flat rates...which turned out to be huge. Someone got a $30k swimming pool installed and I made 3k, someone bought a $150k home and I got $2k off of the commissions...and these leads were coming in daily.

    can you clarify?

    _____
    Bruce
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    • Profile picture of the author kk075
      Originally Posted by Bruce NewMedia View Post

      Its always nice to read stories like this...keeps many new marketers (and not so new ones) motivated, even inspired...

      I am wondering though, how you accomplished this 'commission sharing' with licensed real estate agents, unless you are a licensed RE agent also? (it's illegal to do this with a non-licensed person in every state).

      can you clarify?

      _____
      Bruce
      Sure. Let me think how to phrase this so it's not even more confusing.

      Okay, first...if I was thinking about building a local affiliate network for plumbers, my very first step wouldn't be keyword research or anything like that, it would be to get on Craigslist and see how desperate local plumbers were for work. If there weren't many ads, then that meant that most of them were staying steady...so that was my initial gauge.

      If I saw that there were lots of ads up though, then I knew it was a niche worth exploring. So I'd email every plumber I could find and talk about my leaky sink; then I'd see which ones would come give a free quote and how decent they were as people. So I'd have these folks in place before I ever built a single page of an affiliate site.

      With real estate, you'd be amazed how many AWESOME working mom realtors are out there that treat clients like gold, but they don't have any marketing skills at all. So they don't get listings, they don't get clients, and they don't make any real money other than through friends and relatives. So I'd do the exact same thing as I did with the plumber, find some awesome people, and then run my business through the best one I found. They'd get the 25% referral fee and pay me, and in exchange I'd give them a cut plus let them cherry pick the leads. This person would also qualify all my leads for me though in this instance...which is why I let them cherry pick in the first place.

      So no matter what niche you choose, the "outsider laws" do not necessarily apply to you if you're working with licensed professionals. If you do things right though, then there's enough slices of the pie to go around for everyone.

      I hope that helps...and thank you for the kind words.
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  • Profile picture of the author HugoLand
    Thanks for your inspirational history!!
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  • Profile picture of the author GregDeTisi
    Very inspiring and a great read. Well done you!
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    • Profile picture of the author bloomingrose
      "The 97 out of 100 just want a paycheck...but they don't want to work at Walmart to get that. So many here say, "How can I make my first $100 to get started?" That's easy. You walk to the nearest gas station and you get a job. And when you're not working at that job, you'll study search optimization and online marketing and how a squeeze letter works and hundreds of other things...and you'll keep working at that gas station until you have two full time incomes....one from your job and one from your hobby.

      People intentionally overlook that part of the story though because they think, "This guy had it so easy and I want to be like him." Nothing was easy though and I spent years barely scraping by. But I worked and studied and went so far above and beyond for all my clients, that they couldn't help but recommend me to others. And then I studied all those different business models and told my clients what was working for them and what wasn't...and that's how I became who I am today. It was years and years of hard work though, make no mistake about that."

      A couple of points. It is perfectly fine to want to make a little extra money, even if your other job is the Walmart. There are so many people in the world that are just hurting financially, and thanks for giving us a proven way to make some extra money - article writing.

      A gentleman on a FB group that I belong to went through a financial crisis and he started writing for one of the sites. He started for very little an article but built up his reputation until he is now getting over $1200 a month from it: as well as breaking through blocks to his other IM path. Article writing like you are describing is a REAL proven way of making money. And a little money can be huge for some people. I will never forget reading about the plight of a FB friend who needed a sleep apnea machine for $500 and did not have the money. Since my dad developed many complications from sleep apnea (like heart disease) that struck home.

      It shouldn't be too hard to make $500 by article writing. Well, hard, but not impossible. So I applaud you for showing that to the people that need to see it. Ironically, every one here in the forum does not need to become an entrepreneur to profit. Even a little bit of money is helpful.

      Second, you showed that most of us do not do well with windfalls. You know the plight of lottery winners? The people that did well with you realized that just because you get a windfall does not mean that you can quit.

      Third, you gave us a blueprint on how to work with other people: how to hire people that were useful to you, as you also gave to them.

      I realize that a lot of what you are talking about is focus, and I realize that I suffer from a lack of that. That is one reason I am committed to taking my eBay business to a predictable sizable income: it is a proven way of making money with my computer, although sometimes it is mind-numbingly boring. I cannot depend just on my job.

      I had to laugh when I read the part from the guy who said "why are you coming from outside of the woodwork now to get on the WF?" I will have to apologize for him. Lots of the members here are adolescents (of all ages) and they do not know enough to trust people who are really trying to share. They are on their own whenever they sit in front of the computer, and they do not have their mothers to thump then on the side of the head when they are rude. I saw them do that with another marketer who was a millionaire - not realizing that she had been spending time becoming one.

      Guys and dolls: trust this kind of mentor, and seek out the mentoring that they have to give.

      Thanks, and quick recovery with the flu.
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      • Profile picture of the author kk075
        Originally Posted by bloomingrose View Post

        I had to laugh when I read the part from the guy who said "why are you coming from outside of the woodwork now to get on the WF?" I will have to apologize for him. Lots of the members here are adolescents (of all ages) and they do not know enough to trust people who are really trying to share. They are on their own whenever they sit in front of the computer, and they do not have their mothers to thump then on the side of the head when they are rude. I saw them do that with another marketer who was a millionaire - not realizing that she had been spending time becoming one.

        Guys and dolls: trust this kind of mentor, and seek out the mentoring that they have to give.

        Thanks, and quick recovery with the flu.
        Before I got so sick, I had never even thought of looking for a marketing forum before. And now I see that some people have been here for 10+ years and they probably thought, "Who the heck is this scam artist trying to weasel his way into the community to hustle us? Any day now he's going to start selling something like every other guru..."

        And honestly, that's why I never gave my name or the link to my site, because I really did post just to help others. You have to realize though, when you take a guy that writes 5,000+ words a day and then throws him in bed, that urge to write doesn't go away. So I found this forum and started answering questions...and that's what eventually led to this post.

        It was never about the possibility of making money though and that's why I eventually posted a link to my blog in the signature (to say, "Look, I don't have a course for sale!"). I wanted to show that forums shouldn't be about money or sales or self-promotion...it should be solely about helping others. And that's all I tried to do.

        Thanks for your very kind words though; you read my intentions perfectly.
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      • Profile picture of the author microscopes
        Originally Posted by bloomingrose View Post

        People intentionally overlook that part of the story though because they think, "This guy had it so easy and I want to be like him." Nothing was easy though and I spent years barely scraping by. But I worked and studied and went so far above and beyond for all my clients, that they couldn't help but recommend me to others. And then I studied all those different business models and told my clients what was working for them and what wasn't...and that's how I became who I am today. It was years and years of hard work though, make no mistake about that."

        When I first started Internet Marketing, I became discouraged very quickly. "It's been two weeks, where is the money!?" My patience was thin. My determination was weak.

        My heart was not fully into the BUSINESS. And make no mistake, working online is a BUSINESS.

        So I did something drastic.

        I spent $4,000 on a domain name.

        Not because I needed THAT domain name to be successful. But I did it because I knew that if I sank that much money into a domain name, I wouldn't allow myself to not recoup the investment.

        It ended up being a great decision. I still have the website I built around that domain name and it is an authority in the space it is in.

        The majority of my online endeavors are websites aimed at other industries. But I do have 1 Internet Marketing website, and it is aimed to help NEWBIES. Because we have all been there. Where do we turn? What do we do? What's going to work for us.

        You know what I HATED hearing when I was new?

        "Just read the forums. Use the search function."

        It was horrible advice then, and it is horrible advice now.

        ATTENTION NEWBIES - Do you want some real advice? JUST - DO - SOMETHING.

        Pick something and DO IT.

        Just START.

        But anyway, my point comes around to this: I sorta don't like threads like these. Not because the author is doing anything wrong - he isn't. But because the motivation it brings to new marketers typically tends to get them to grasp at straws.

        They PM the author of the post with a barrage of questions.

        They search for similar stories by "gurus" who will charge them an buttload of money for consulting.

        The endorphins start kickin and they waste time.

        JUST - DO - SOMETHING.

        Make a plan and get to work.

        PS: The original authors story was great. Loved the history!
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      • Profile picture of the author kk075
        Originally Posted by bloomingrose View Post


        A couple of points. It is perfectly fine to want to make a little extra money, even if your other job is the Walmart. There are so many people in the world that are just hurting financially, and thanks for giving us a proven way to make some extra money - article writing.

        Second, you showed that most of us do not do well with windfalls. You know the plight of lottery winners? The people that did well with you realized that just because you get a windfall does not mean that you can quit.

        Third, you gave us a blueprint on how to work with other people: how to hire people that were useful to you, as you also gave to them.

        I realize that a lot of what you are talking about is focus, and I realize that I suffer from a lack of that. That is one reason I am committed to taking my eBay business to a predictable sizable income: it is a proven way of making money with my computer, although sometimes it is mind-numbingly boring. I cannot depend just on my job.

        I had to laugh when I read the part from the guy who said "why are you coming from outside of the woodwork now to get on the WF?" I will have to apologize for him. Lots of the members here are adolescents (of all ages) and they do not know enough to trust people who are really trying to share. They are on their own whenever they sit in front of the computer, and they do not have their mothers to thump then on the side of the head when they are rude. I saw them do that with another marketer who was a millionaire - not realizing that she had been spending time becoming one.

        Guys and dolls: trust this kind of mentor, and seek out the mentoring that they have to give.

        Thanks, and quick recovery with the flu.
        Yeah, I completely agree....I started making $40-80 dollars a week as a writer and I was perfectly fine with that. By I did well because I LOVED what I was doing and I still do, which is why I always tell everyone to pick a niche they're passionate about. As long as people keep on keeping on though and get past being discouraged, then there is no limit to the success they can have.

        Thanks for the very kind words.
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    • Profile picture of the author SFNY
      Thanks KK075,

      I'm kind of in a similar situation like you were in but I'm probably a little younger and a little less successful. I have one of those 20 year pension jobs and happened to get on very young. On the side, I've always been a hustle type entrepreneur. From being in nightlife promotions and marketing to running a fitness business, I've always done something fulfilling that I can get paid for. I'm at the point now where I'm looking to set myself up after retirement and doing some research to decide what my next move should be. I think the biggest hurdle as an entrepreneur for me is deciding what market I want to go into and how I want to invest my time and money in a way that I can get fulfillment and make money.

      This post sheds some light that it is possible. Would it be ok if I dropped you a PM?

      Thanks for the post,
      SFNY
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      • Profile picture of the author kk075
        Originally Posted by SFNY View Post

        This post sheds some light that it is possible. Would it be ok if I dropped you a PM?
        Please wait a few days to do so, but that's perfectly fine. A lot have reached out to express appreciation and I'm trying like mad to send a thank you reply...but I certainly didn't expect this much outreach from telling my story.

        B the way everyone, I guess I reached my allotted "Thanks" button limit for the day so I can't tank any more posts...but I genuinely appreciate each and every one of your kind comments.

        If you have a question then share it here and I will definitely answer it to the best of my ability as soon as I can. Please remember that I'm a workaholic with a lot going on and there's only so much time in the day.
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  • Profile picture of the author cabenb
    Thanks for sharing your story!
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  • Profile picture of the author parg
    Hi
    This is a very inspiring story. Thank you for sharing.
    Parg
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  • Profile picture of the author IntoughShape
    LOL! What typos ?

    That was truly something else, you sir have an amazing passion for writing. You have mastered your craft, you are writing. One of the best pieces of writing I've ever read. Very motivating and inspiring story, I loved it, thanks for sharing. Congrats to your success & have a nice day, I'm sure you went through heck.
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  • Profile picture of the author exhibia
    Thank you so much for your post.
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  • Profile picture of the author ifediri
    TOTALLY INSPIRED from All I read Here From page One! Awesome!
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  • Profile picture of the author surfer30
    This an amazing story you share with u, i always say that google is thinking like human and loves unique stuff, if you drive value you get first.
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    Its To Your sucess in Internet Marketing When You Provide Tons of Value

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  • Profile picture of the author Amirol
    Very inspiring experiences! Thanks for the sharing!
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  • Profile picture of the author KevinDahlberg
    Inspiring story. Definitely gave me a lot to think about, and at the right time too. I've been spending a lot of brain energy on monetization lately, and how to make money on what I've been creating. Made me realize that I should go back to what I was actually making money at my first time around - freelancing.
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  • Profile picture of the author MikeMizOne
    Wow, truly one of the most inspiring posts I've read for quite some time! This just goes to show that doing what you love will make successful, if you put the time and effort into it.

    I haven't even been in the Internet marketing business for a year but much like you I keep finding new ways to earn more money. You start learning one thing and then suddenly you've learnt about 10 other things as well .Which you later can use to expand your business even more.

    I can also relate to finding like minded individuals, I've yet to find someone that puts as much effort as I do.

    Thanks for the read!
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  • Profile picture of the author Rajamanickam
    It impressed me, lot of things to learn from his personal experiences he shared, its 100% true his statement "It's hard to stay focused and disciplined when nobody is watching ..."
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  • Profile picture of the author paulvalcin
    Originally Posted by kk075 View Post

    Hey everyone. Since I read so many repetitive posts on here about "where to start", I figured that I'd share my personal story for others to draw inspiration and ideas from. While I'm a writer at heart, I've run the full gauntlet in the marketing world with zero formal training, education or experience...so I hope it gives you some clarity on this world.

    I will say that I typed this from start to finish in one sitting though, so please forgive any typos in advance. This came from the heart and I never edit things like that.

    When I first started writing online, it was nothing more than a hobby. I had recently sold a business and I got a cushy state job that I had planned on riding for 20 years into the state pension system, and the last thing I was looking for was a career change. I just wanted to relax, travel with my family and watch the kids grow up.

    I had always loved writing though, so I'd look for small jobs writing content for $5-10 an article on Elance and similar sites. Then I started writing my own articles on the Yahoo Voices network and eventually they made me a feature writer for sports, home improvement and technology. These were 500 word articles that paid $15-20 each and they got syndicated out as well, so I was averaging 10-20k page views per post.

    At that point, I was making around $300 a month just writing to write, but I had also surpassed 3 million page views on Yahoo and people were starting to contact me directly. In fact, one of the first ones was Caribbean Cruise Lines; they offered me $50 per Yahoo blog to talk about the cruising industry and some of their ships. And I thought that was great money until an affiliate marketing company offered me $150 per blog to talk about their various websites...and I think that's when I officially stopped being just another writer.

    Now, at first I thought that they loved me as a writer...and I guess in some ways they did. All they really cared about was my link-juice from a PR10 site and my 1,000+ followers who seemed to comment on every article. (and this was back before we knew comments and on-page times were even a factor). So in a way I was being used for my resources but hey, at $50-100 a pop for 20 minutes of my time, I can live with that.

    From that point forward, I kept writing about sports and technology for $10-20 a pop, but I also took on an extra $300-500 a week from select clients that were contacting me. And then I thought, "I make more money writing 5 hours a week than I do working 40 hours for the state," so I quit my job. Because even back then I understood that writing articles wasn't really about SEO or what Google wanted to see, it was about connecting businesses to people. And to do that, you don't focus on what the business says...you focus on what their customers would ultimately want to hear. Because Google has always said that the site with the best information should always rank #1 overall, and that's why the last 3-4 years of algorithms have focused so heavily on the social metrics of websites (time on site, pages viewed, comments, likes, etc.).

    So here's the best piece of advice you'll ever hear- Google has never changed. Not one bit. They only got better at meeting their original objective of making the site with the best content appear in the #1 slot, and you can't do that by trying to optimize for Google. Instead, optimize your sites for the people you're trying to connect with...and then Google will see your value. If you do that, then no Penguin or Panda update in the world can touch you.

    By 2007, I was ranked the #24 grossing copywriter on Elance simply because my copy converted ridiculously well. I was fortunate enough to get hired by a few awesome SEO companies early on that taught me a whole lot about websites, and because of them my rates steadily increased over time. First it was $15 an hour, then $25, then $40...and I went up in price with new clients every time I had more work than I had time in the week.

    By 2008, I realized that I was working 80 hours a week and never coming up for air, so I completely changed my business model. Instead of doing all the writing myself, I posted ads online for people who wanted to learn online marketing and I asked them for a simple writing sample. I'd say something like, write me a paragraph about the best place on Earth...or the best food you ever eaten...and then I'd reply to those who genuinely impressed me. Even if the content was fantastic though, I'd pick it apart from an SEO and creative standpoint just to see how the writers would respond. If they said, "Thanks for the advice/critiques...it really helped!," I'd take them on as an apprentice. If they defended their work, then I blew them off since they didn't want to truly learn.

    Within six months, I had four writers "in training" and I took every decent priced job on Elance for them to work on. I gave them 50-80% of the revenue (depending on how good they were), kept the rest for my editing/teaching and I promised to give them the clients they worked for directly once they got close to my level. I taught them everything they needed from a business standpoint though; time management, customer service, dealing with jerks, how to properly bid...I handed out complete blueprints.

    By 2009, I was the #1 grossing writer on Elance BY FAR and I had probably cycled through at least 30 writers of my own. Surprisingly though, only 3 or 4 stuck it out...the rest would become lazy shortly after they received their first few big paychecks. Then they'd come back a week later with some super-lame excuse why they disappeared, and like an idiot I'd give them another shot. It taught me a lesson though, most people are not cut out for freelance writing because of the complete freedom. It's hard to stay focused and disciplined when nobody is watching ...maybe only 3 out of 100 aspiring writers have the work ethic. And I'm saying that because I've literally hired/trained a thousand people over the past 7 years, and only 30 stuck with it all the way through. And you know what? Out of those 30, almost all 30 make six figure salaries today...either running an SEO firm or doing their own thing. About a half dozen of them have surpassed me as well and I couldn't be happier for them.

    On the other hand, about 800 of the thousand are still writing $10 articles on and off because they never understood the success they could have by truly committing. As soon as they had a little success, it went to their heads and they would forget that marketing is a business. You have to study, keep up with trends, talk to your customers, constantly market, build your network.....and post lots of content daily. The 800+ just couldn't do that without someone standing over them and telling them to.

    In 2011, I was offered a job with one of the hottest internet marketing firms at the time...and I really struggled with what to do. I was clearing $80k a year doing my own thing and only working 40-50 hours a week, but it was also a massive opportunity to learn from other professionals. Because you have to realize that by this point, I still hadn't worked for any type of newspaper, marketing firm or magazine....I was as freelance as you can get. So I threw out a number that I didn't think they could even consider ($90k a year) and they said yes...if I'd sign a non-compete and drop all my clients.

    Well, this was both the best and the worst decision of my life...because the company laid me off within six months because I didn't want to move to their city and take a big promotion. They did teach me the internet marketing side of the business though and showed me how they made tens of millions a year through affiliates, so I reinvented myself once again....but this time I was 100% broke because I had just bought a huge home.

    From that point on, I went back to Elance (where my reputation had all but died since everything is based on your last 6 months of performance) and started searching for clients. I hit Craigslist, great job boards and everywhere else I could find as well. It was slow going though so I made my first affiliate site, which taught employers how to find freelance writers. Elance and oDesk paid me $50 each per new business sign-up (and $5 per new writer), and I spent about six weeks 100% focused on that site. The first month, it earned $450, and it took in $1650 in month two. I was at $1400 about halfway through month 3 when someone offered to buy the site for $15,000, and I countered with $28,000. We settled at $21,500 and I haven't done an affiliate site since. Because I reinvented myself yet again.

    As a writer, I was worth $40-50 an hour and as a marketer I could bring in double that. But by teaching people to quickly rank their websites and writing their copy, I was coming out closer to the $150/hr range, and my phone was always ringing with new opportunities. It was about that time I started working with someone who was advertising online for local businesses and everything I was doing just clicked...how many industries out there needed more traffic but didn't know how to get it?

    So I started working with a web developer and we built specialty sites for contractors, real estate agents, dentists and all the skilled trades...selling them qualified leads for $100 a pop. And we were getting tons of leads, so we slowly progressed to a percentage of the sale instead of flat rates...which turned out to be huge. Someone got a $30k swimming pool installed and I made 3k, someone bought a $150k home and I got $2k off of the commissions...and these leads were coming in daily. I OWNED the local search results because nobody else was doing this, and the biggest companies in my area would come to me for leads because I'd have the first five slots on Google and they'd be at #6.

    Then I hit the exact same problem as I did with the writers though; the web developer made a quick $50,000 in two months and thought he was Donald Trump. So he became unreliable, stopped working but still demanded half...and I finally deleted all my content and gave the guy the entire business. Now, he works for a local company making $40k a year as a programmer in a dead end job...and I've been searching for a "web builder" version of me ever since.

    So for now, I'm mainly writing video scripts, email marketing, blogs, eBooks and other marketing content for a few Fortune 500 companies, plus I have my SEO firm focusing solely on generating local leads as well. Almost completely by accident though, I think I learned just about every possible way to make money as a writer/entrepreneur and it has been an amazing journey. And honestly, I do not know what's next...but I will reinvent myself once again to raise the bar even higher. Because that's what a true entrepreneur does.

    Anyway, I hope that helped...I just gave you at least a dozen ways to make the money you're looking for. And if you fall into that golden 2-3% of the writers/marketers out there that I worked so hard to find for years, then who knows...the sky is the limit.
    inspiring..and interesting. I own an seo company and everything you said is true. If you're providing great contents for people and people start coming to you, not even google can stop your traffic. It takes dedication, discipline and perseverance to achieve success.

    I advise anyone who are hungry for success to stop reading emails, or read blogs or books unrelated to your topic. Instead give 100% at what you're doing right now. If you're writing a book, spend a year writing, editing, researching, testing the material. Stay away for negative people. My breakthrough came when i was not making money selling stuff on amazon.
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    • Profile picture of the author taffie
      One of the greatest pieces written from the heart I have read in a while. Thank you for the inspiration!
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    • Profile picture of the author kk075
      Originally Posted by paulvalcin View Post

      inspiring..and interesting. I own an seo company and everything you said is true. If you're providing great contents for people and people start coming to you, not even google can stop your traffic. It takes dedication, discipline and perseverance to achieve success.

      I advise anyone who are hungry for success to stop reading emails, or read blogs or books unrelated to your topic. Instead give 100% at what you're doing right now. If you're writing a book, spend a year writing, editing, researching, testing the material. Stay away for negative people. My breakthrough came when i was not making money selling stuff on amazon.
      I fully agree...the key is just to get to work TODAY and then worry about becoming perfect next week. The magic comes from diving into the niche head-first and learning from the actual repetition; there's no substitute in life for that.

      Thanks for the compliments too!
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  • Profile picture of the author PrometheusIV
    Thank you very much sir!
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  • Profile picture of the author eholmlund
    Based on the comments I think a lot of warriors are missing the point of the story. It's not about Google-- that was a good "tip" but it is not the success factor. It's also not about being in the top 3% of writers who "have what it takes".

    It's about treating your business like a business and not a job. He found something that worked, and then he leveraged other people to scale the business up.

    You can see that a few times he kept slipping back into the old mentality of "trading time for dollars", including a salaried position at $90k. And while you can get rich working a job (by investing that money), it's not the way to build a business.

    You'll notice that after that point, he found other types of leverage. Instead of leveraging other people's time, he began to leverage the internet for passive income (in the form of affiliate commissions). In other words, instead of writing once and getting paid for it, he could write once and get paid for it over and over again.

    IMO the keys to this story are determination and leverage. He happened to be a writer, but these principles apply in any industry. If you're reading this and either not succeeding, or basically working an online job, I would ask you to look at what you can leverage so that your income isn't tied solely to the time you invest.
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    • Profile picture of the author kk075
      Originally Posted by eholmlund View Post

      Based on the comments I think a lot of warriors are missing the point of the story. It's not about Google-- that was a good "tip" but it is not the success factor. It's also not about being in the top 3% of writers who "have what it takes".

      It's about treating your business like a business and not a job. He found something that worked, and then he leveraged other people to scale the business up.

      You can see that a few times he kept slipping back into the old mentality of "trading time for dollars", including a salaried position at $90k. And while you can get rich working a job (by investing that money), it's not the way to build a business.

      You'll notice that after that point, he found other types of leverage. Instead of leveraging other people's time, he began to leverage the internet for passive income (in the form of affiliate commissions). In other words, instead of writing once and getting paid for it, he could write once and get paid for it over and over again.

      IMO the keys to this story are determination and leverage. He happened to be a writer, but these principles apply in any industry. If you're reading this and either not succeeding, or basically working an online job, I would ask you to look at what you can leverage so that your income isn't tied solely to the time you invest.
      Wow, a person who can really read between the lines and get to the heart of the matter! I am guessing that you are a very successful in something in life...because you understood my intentions and the point I was trying to deliver perfectly. That's a rare trait to be able to see the bigger picture, and you stated perfectly the parts that I considered going back in to edit.

      Thanks for that!
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  • Profile picture of the author kathybee13
    Although I don't consider myself a writer...the information that you posted was invaluable. I produce live events such as seminars, workshops and I'm working on a new documentary and two new TV shows. Between events,,,I search for ways to improve my business model. A must for me is to increase my audience attendance. Your information mapped out what it takes to succeed in any business and pointed out that everyone does not fit into our mold. Trying to make people fit...is wrong for all parties. Finding the right people to work with and not getting upset over this process, is one of my take-aways from your information! Thanks so much for sharing! Much success to you!
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  • Profile picture of the author sifcom
    Awesome story , very inspiring , Thank you so much for sharing it with us .
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  • Profile picture of the author izzydoesit
    Wow! Amazing!
    You wrote, "My 'system' as you put it is not for sale and it is 100% free to use. I call it the 'Work your Butt Off Until You're Successful' Course."
    That, of course, gave me an idea! See, working your butt off doesn't sound so great, but I figure we can change it to "Succeed - AND Lose That Unsightly Butt In the Process!" Much better, huh? I think I can follow that up with "Our weird success formula may be your best solution to belly fat as well!" After all, if they use the oodles of money they make to join Jenny Craig, our success formula will have gotten rid of their belly fat! Now, if that seems too indirect, remember that success in one area of life often begins a cascade of successes in other areas as well, so this program may help weight loss even pretty directly. I think.
    Now, of course, we need to add a "Done For You" module, since the other 97% deserve success as well. After all, just because an accident of nature caused them to lack motivation - either because God didn't give it to them (for the religious folk), or because their ancestor stayed back in the cave sharpening the spears for the hunters (for the scientific-minded) - doesn't mean they deserve success any less than those who have won life's lottery!
    And, of course, since the course includes the advice not to "drink the Kool-Aid", we need to create an auto-ship (at $87.50/month) of a coconut water infused with electrolytes, abs-defining antioxidants & guarana to give them the energy to sit at the beach sipping margaritas while a factory full of writers in Bhopal churn out ad copy for local swimming pool dealers and plastic surgeons, optimized to fool Google's spiders.
    Then, for another $79 a month, we can give them full rights to teach others how to duplicate their website, make exactly as much money, and occupy the next lawn chair over - even if they prefer martinis.

    This business idea excites me so much, I think I'll call my friend to start working on it at once. Wait! I think his number changed, and I'll have to dial 10 digits instead of 7.
    Oh well, I'll wait until I have another million-dollar idea tomorrow!
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    • Profile picture of the author kk075
      Originally Posted by izzydoesit View Post

      Wow! Amazing!

      You wrote, "My 'system' as you put it is not for sale and it is 100% free to use. I call it the 'Work your Butt Off Until You're Successful' Course."

      That, of course, gave me an idea! See, working your butt off doesn't sound so great, but I figure we can change it to "Succeed - AND Lose That Unsightly Butt In the Process!"
      I think you just wrote every possible reason why I'm not a "guru", a published author or even an advisor to students. I will admit that I laughed the entire time I read it though.
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  • Profile picture of the author izzydoesit
    I met a friend last week who always rises to the top of the sales field, no matter where dropped. (A few times, companies he worked for salivated over being able to take over his commissions, or just didn't want to pay anyone so much, and replaced him with a younger salesperson. He just started over, rose back to the top in a couple years.)
    I reminded him, "You had given me a pamphlet two decades ago of a speech by a fellow named Gray in the Life Insurance industry. He said that what differentiates successes & failures, is that successes are willing to do all the things failures are not willing to do." He looked me in the eye, and said, "That is still ABSOLUTELY true!'
    So I told him if he ever finds a copy of that speech again, he should turn me over & stick it in my back pocket. (Okay, maybe I didn't say that, but I thunked it!)
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  • Profile picture of the author workhomeplanet
    Great story! Thanks for sharing it :-)
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  • Profile picture of the author smna1586
    Inspiring story. Stories like these help you dream big.

    I believe everyone online have a story similar to this one. We stumbled upon something and start doing it like we have noting else to do....then one day we comeup with something even better and drive in.

    One success leads to another success and one day, 5-7 years later from the day you've started; you come back to Warrior and post the story to inspire a few struggling soul to keep pushing their limits to it's most.

    Now we call it, aha! Cheers! Momento.

    Great share.
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  • Profile picture of the author markbyrne
    Years ago, I used to sit outside a petrol station with a coffee for motivation. I'd look at people driving in and out, with blank looks on their faces, remembering various things on their to do lists. They could either be driving to a crappy 9-5, or spending the day shopping. Everything from beat up VWs to Mercedes S Classes rolled in and out, in the middle of their A to B.

    My motivation came from the beat up jalopies, rather than the big expensive cars. I didn't want to be stuck in a miserable job, with bosses who should be one rung below me on the ladder. I was going from job to job, but eventually I landed an agency job working in a hospital, where I was left alone for hours at a time, and had time to use my phone to go online. It took me 3 months, but I set up my first profitable online company using my phone a couple of hours a day. I built a website and lots of ready clients. When my contract ended, I had a business poised for success. I launched without a penny to my name, in actual fact, with my arse on the line.

    I fall into the 3%, I think (hope!). With dogged determination and a balls out mentality, anything is possible. Your post reminded me that I'm not a rare occurrence, and the mentality is in lots of us. Even if you are not in the 3%, this thread just taught you HOW to be.

    Thank you for the most enjoyable and inspirational post I have read in a long time here at WF. Doing this is selfless and to be congratulated. You are the reason Allen Says can be proud of this forum.
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    • Profile picture of the author flexiverse
      Originally Posted by markbyrne View Post

      Years ago, I used to sit outside a petrol station with a coffee for motivation. I'd look at people driving in and out, with blank looks on their faces, remembering various things on their to do lists. They could either be driving to a crappy 9-5, or spending the day shopping. Everything from beat up VWs to Mercedes S Classes rolled in and out, in the middle of their A to B.

      My motivation came from the beat up jalopies, rather than the big expensive cars. I didn't want to be stuck in a miserable job, with bosses who should be one rung below me on the ladder. I was going from job to job, but eventually I landed an agency job working in a hospital, where I was left alone for hours at a time, and had time to use my phone to go online. It took me 3 months, but I set up my first profitable online company using my phone a couple of hours a day. I built a website and lots of ready clients. When my contract ended, I had a business poised for success. I launched without a penny to my name, in actual fact, with my arse on the line.

      I fall into the 3%, I think (hope!). With dogged determination and a balls out mentality, anything is possible. Your post reminded me that I'm not a rare occurrence, and the mentality is in lots of us. Even if you are not in the 3%, this thread just taught you HOW to be.

      Thank you for the most enjoyable and inspirational post I have read in a long time here at WF. Doing this is selfless and to be congratulated. You are the reason Allen Says can be proud of this forum.

      There is a simple key principle in business here people forget. Daily focus and clear goal. Most people just don't have the commitment and daily focus to have their own business.
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    • Profile picture of the author More Than Tips
      Originally Posted by markbyrne View Post


      Thank you for the most enjoyable and inspirational post I have read in a long time here at WF. Doing this is selfless and to be congratulated. You are the reason Allen Says can be proud of this forum.
      Oh my goodness brother I do not know how to break the news to you.
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      • Profile picture of the author markbyrne
        Originally Posted by More Than Tips View Post

        Oh my goodness brother I do not know how to break the news to you.
        Haha yeah... gone, but not forgotten!
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    • Profile picture of the author kk075
      Originally Posted by markbyrne View Post

      I fall into the 3%, I think (hope!). With dogged determination and a balls out mentality, anything is possible. Your post reminded me that I'm not a rare occurrence, and the mentality is in lots of us. Even if you are not in the 3%, this thread just taught you HOW to be.

      Thank you for the most enjoyable and inspirational post I have read in a long time here at WF. Doing this is selfless and to be congratulated. You are the reason Allen Says can be proud of this forum.
      Heck, there are some days where I don't even fall into my 3%....it is very hard to stay motivated when you're doing a thousand things at once. So don't think I was calling anyone out here because the finger can definitely get pointed right back at me. Just ask my wife.

      So if it was a light kick in the butt for those of us who really have it all together, then so be it. Honestly, I wish someone would give me that kick every now and then. My main goal was to reach those who had never even came close to their full potential though and let them see- hey, this nobody started writing $10 articles and now he's well into six figures...all because of a little drive and determination.

      Anyway, thanks for returning the inspiration right back to me. I'm going to get back to work now!
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  • Profile picture of the author flexiverse
    It boils down to one thing, you've got to LOVE what you do. Then do it ethically with as much quality as possible.
    Quality content is still the no1 principe in marketing, so if you love writing and love quality content you've got it made.
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  • Profile picture of the author hk010
    Thanks for sharing your story. It's completely believable. In my first months of being a copywriter, I was making $250 for a paragraph of text and gaining clients quickly because my copy converted. That was back in 2004 and then I got pregnant with my second and even sitting in front of the PC made me super sick. I had to stop and couldn't work. I never went back to copywriting (insert PPD and a divorce) but I used my skills to concentrate on my own business/website which has ranked page one of Google for my keywords for over ten years.

    That has always translated to packed classes (50 students a week) with a paid waiting list while other teachers have 3-5 students who maybe show up.

    Copywriting as a skill is worth learning. How to apply it to SEO is worth learning and will always bring reasonable success at the minimum.

    Thank you for sharing yours and the inspiration.
    Elizabeth
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  • Profile picture of the author kk075
    Hey Everyone-

    My thanks button started working again and then it stopped (after 3 more thanks), so it must be on a four hour timer or something like that. I will reply to each comment directly when I can, but today has truly been overwhelming with everyone reaching out with kind words and encouragement. So thanks again...you guys rock!
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  • Profile picture of the author frozenjim
    Great story kk075,

    Not a million, but I did clear almost $800k the last 3 years (total, not yearly). Affiliate marketing... sort of

    Before that... 4 years of learning and trying things at almost no income. This year my method is slowing down, and I'm seeing a lot of stuff out there just like mine ... stuff I practically invented... dang A/Ms! I socked lots of $ away though.

    But the technical aspects --what are you doing? how are you doing it?-- one's methodology/strategy, are just temporal in this industry, and less relevant than the underlying drivers (work ethic, etc) brought up by kk075 and others.

    I read a lot. Skim a lot. Absorb a lot. But have guilt from not contributing/giving back as I should. Trying to work on that... hence this... I literally just signed up to write this. Maybe I'll turn over a new leaf? It's not just the high-post count members you need to read. The highest earners in this field are mostly not sitting around writing comments on forums (imho) unless it's part of their overall marketing strategy. Hope this helps answer the person above who asked "if you've been around the business for so long, why have you registered for WF only this year? Did you discover the forum..."

    I clicked a w/f email with this post's intriguing title at the top, then got sucked in by kk075's awesome story. I try to read a few w/f posts now and then, other forums too.

    This type of work is not for everyone. Here's what I think separates the earners from the non: the ability to keep at it. To work hard, and keep working hard. To channel frustration into commitment. To always be "constructively dissatisfied."

    I read a lot. I'm always learning something. 99% is useless or redundant... but that 1%.... oh, that 1%!! Trying to find and recognize it is a skill.

    I've never bought a wso. What did dad say?... 'if something sounds to good to be true...' That said, I think that if there's something related to what you like or want to do, and you can learn something new (1%?) about your niche/method/area...

    Loved the part about outsourcing. My take on outsourcing is don't do it just because you don't know how to do something. Rather, learn it. The only time I outsource is time-consuming things I already know how to do. Aka self-reliance.

    I place a high value on my time, but I don't rush through things either. I spend a lot of time just pondering ideas and what-ifs. A lot of thinking, a lot of doing. It's not either-or.

    I never ever think "I can't do that." I knew nothing about web/computers 7 years ago when I quit my corporate job (or it quit me?). Today I know web/seo inside out. I know maybe a dozen programming languages... not great but enough to build most anything web or desktop I need (mostly marketing related) on my own. Learned from scratch - googling, stackoverflow, a little codeacademy - no formal training. On a related subject, I have an MBA (former life) that is quite useless and mostly irrelevant to anything IM I've done or am doing (if you're a struggling but aspiring IM'er and are thinking 'maybe if I go to college...' -stop).

    I try to look at what others are doing that's related to what I do (or want to do) and think 'can I do that, but better and/or differently?'

    I have a txt file on my desktop titled "To do's / Ideas" that I look at a few times a week. Nothing fancy ... about 20 lines at the moment ... most are things I won't do ... others are ideas or spin-offs that turned into projects. Seems to help keep me focused and prioritized.

    Patience is key (and maybe harder for us, the way we're wired). But at some point the sun does come out. In my case the winter was longer than the summer. I remember the feeling of getting a $47+k check one month (my highest), and the look on the bank teller's face when I brought it in, and the strange feeling of having to give my thumbprint when trying to cash out $12k of it (sheesh, I already felt like I stole it!). When that happens (the sun coming out), save your money... don't take it (or your method) for granted, because everyone/company/product/service must change and innovate to survive and thrive. At the same time (as saving your money), don't be afraid to spend when you need to if it's on something you need to grow your business/idea/project.

    Again, this job isn't for everyone. You're probably not going to be sitting on a beach with your laptop checking commission stats drinking Coronas any time soon. The 2 years in a row I cleared (profit) over 300k I worked at least 80 hrs/wk from my desk in my little home office (now it's a slightly larger home/office .

    These are just some things that have worked for me. Sorry if any parts came across negative or arrogant... didn't mean them to. Thanks for reading. Good luck on your journey.
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    • Profile picture of the author kk075
      Originally Posted by frozenjim View Post

      I read a lot. Skim a lot. Absorb a lot. But have guilt from not contributing/giving back as I should. Trying to work on that... hence this... I literally just signed up to write this. Maybe I'll turn over a new leaf? It's not just the high-post count members you need to read. The highest earners in this field are mostly not sitting around writing comments on forums (imho) unless it's part of their overall marketing strategy.
      You would be absolutely awe-struck if you knew some of the people who frequent this site. I'll put it this way though; a select few of the folks with 10 or less total posts probably earn more than the rest of this forum combined.
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  • Profile picture of the author gtgart
    Hey kk075,

    Thanks for sharing your inspiring journey with us all. Leads for commission is a great model, as you are giving businesses what they want all along - namely sales. SEO is just a part of the process and not what they really want to buy. They want to buy sales and kudos to you with the commission model you have worked out.

    You have given me some great ideas to pursue, and for that I thank you too!
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  • Profile picture of the author Dhairaz
    I have summarised in key point:
    1. Consistency do what you like
    2. Develop good business model
    3. As an entrepreneur, keep growth
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    • Profile picture of the author sethrose
      This was great! It's much appreciated that you took the time to write all this up. I will definitely be implementing some of these ideas ASAP.

      If I may ask a question...

      Is hiring a team of writers, or perhaps just 1 or 2, to delegate work out to and take a cut of the profits something you would recommend?

      If so, do you have any brief words of advice on doing so?

      Thanks!
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      • Profile picture of the author kk075
        Originally Posted by sethrose View Post

        This was great! It's much appreciated that you took the time to write all this up. I will definitely be implementing some of these ideas ASAP.

        If I may ask a question...

        Is hiring a team of writers, or perhaps just 1 or 2, to delegate work out to and take a cut of the profits something you would recommend?

        If so, do you have any brief words of advice on doing so?

        Thanks!
        It really depends on your client base and what you're working towards.

        For example, I remember this one contract I had for 500 articles a month for an emerging technology site. And they were willing to pay $20 a post, so that's $10k a month gross. If I paid out 50% of that to 30-50 writers it looks great on paper, but then comes all the headaches of people missing due dates, people disappearing, a sudden drop in quality and all kinds of stuff. So I'd end up writing 150 of those articles myself when all was said and done, spend 200 hours that month editing/training and never have a single moment to spend a penny of the earnings.

        And sure, I was making $6,500+ a month but to me it wasn't worth it for the 90 hour work weeks I'd have to put in. That's $17 an hour profit...and I could make 4-5 times that working for larger clients by myself.

        Now, if you're growing a business and taking on a writer every now and then to help with the overflow, that's a completely different story since you can properly build relationships, learn how to motivate them and ensure that they're going to work out. As you grow you'll also network a bunch though and make solid friends you can count on. So I'd recommend to start small, find just one awesome writer that you get along with and go from there.

        For example, I wrote a 1,300 word article today for a former student who can't find good help for her main client. She's bailed me out before though as have dozens of others, so focus more on the relationship itself instead of making it about a job. Then just have a "pay it forward" attitude and genuinely help them grow as writers....even though that means they'll eventually walk away from you.

        I hope that helps and thanks for the compliments! My thanks button is still disabled so I couldn't use it.
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  • Great story! I'm still wondering if you are still on your way to making your first million, or you have made your first million? Or is this an "I hope I make a million online eventually" story?
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    • Profile picture of the author kk075
      Originally Posted by Internet Trillionaire View Post

      Great story! I'm still wondering if you are still on your way to making your first million, or you have made your first million? Or is this an "I hope I make a million online eventually" story?
      My wife and I were talking about that earlier and curious if I've actually crossed seven figures or not, so we started going through tax records trying to figure it out. I'm very close...probably within $75-100k either way.
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  • Profile picture of the author anynewsbd
    Nice story, thanks for share.
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  • Profile picture of the author mjsca07
    Here is another "Simply awesome post!" comment.

    Seriously, being someone that is still in the negative of making any money doing my OWN thing (I currently work for a business), this is a great story.

    2 questions:

    1) What's your advice for getting started in copywriting? I know this could be a long response, but your quick "gut" answer is probably what I'm looking for.

    2) I have a bit of web design experience myself, and could throw a decent looking site together in a few days. Is it a viable method for a copywriter create their own affiliate sites to make some decent money, or should the focus be on writing for clients?

    I'll take whatever answers you want to throw out, and thank you very much for your time.

    Thanks again for the great story!
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    • Profile picture of the author kk075
      Originally Posted by mjsca07 View Post

      1) What's your advice for getting started in copywriting? I know this could be a long response, but your quick "gut" answer is probably what I'm looking for.

      2) I have a bit of web design experience myself, and could throw a decent looking site together in a few days. Is it a viable method for a copywriter create their own affiliate sites to make some decent money, or should the focus be on writing for clients?
      1) Honestly, if your good with throwing together templates and building sites, then I would recommend that you don't mess with copywriting. Over the years, I've started to go back to school for web design at least a dozen times, and in every instance I said to myself, "You're a great writer that's in demand. Why would you stop earning money to master a new skill that will pay you less than you're already making?"

      So I'm still an HTML noob and rely on my partner for almost all the design aspects of site-building, even though I desperately want to learn coding. That's okay though, because that's what partners are for....he's awesome at what he does and I'm awesome at what I do. Together though, we make a fairly complete package.

      2) To answer question #2, read answer #1. Work on your writing skills a little bit but focus on designing web sites. Take every opportunity to become elite within your field, and then partner with people who are elite at what they do. It will not only save you time, but you'll make more money as well.

      My thanks button is still disabled since I mashed it at least fifty time today, so "Thanks!" for the kind words.
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      • Profile picture of the author mistermint
        Hi,

        Interesting read kk075 though, I couldn't help thinking there is an ulteria motive for you spending so much time on the thread perhaps, a wso is in the making?

        Over a period of about 10 years I have tried many systems to make money on-line some have worked others have not..I found that the big G will get you in the end..

        When I first started out I found that making money with adwords was easy, I recall the excitement of checking my clickbank account each morning and seeing sales..as the recession began to bite it got harder and harder..folks were far more reluctant to pull out a credit card for a flipant offer..

        I always remember thinking about the money I was spending to re-invest in my business such as, hosting, domain names, software, must have spent thousands over the period..started to think that the people making the real money were those who provided the services to on-line marketers like me..

        I also found that, the more information and knowledge I gained the worse of I became, information overload..Given the time it takes to impliment a new startegy i.e.market research, split testing, design changes, copy adjustments etc only to get zero or little return for the effort..

        We have to take note of what our young people are doing on-line, I hardly see my kids use a desktop or laptop..I have never seen anyone in my family click a facebook add..or read a book for that matter..

        Not to go in to a ramble, most people can't write a single paragraph, those that do have a talent for writing interesting articles seo'd or not were born with the skills much in the same way musicians are..

        So my question is: They say if you can read you can cook, does it follow that you can also write?

        Anyway, this is just my 10 cents worth and everyone will have a different experience regarding thier own business..

        Just for fun, I recently had an argument with Hostgator, got so annoyed went in to whm and deleted all my websites..so after 10 long eye bleeding years, I'm undecided what to do next..

        Happy days,

        G.

        PS: My keyboard is a bad speller..
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        • Profile picture of the author kk075
          Originally Posted by mistermint View Post

          Hi,

          Interesting read kk075 though, I couldn't help thinking there is an ulteria motive for you spending so much time on the thread perhaps, a wso is in the making?

          I also found that, the more information and knowledge I gained the worse of I became, information overload..Given the time it takes to impliment a new startegy i.e.market research, split testing, design changes, copy adjustments etc only to get zero or little return for the effort..
          Hey Gordon-

          First, I have absolutely zero interest in a WSO. While it's a great path for some people to get their "products"out in front of other marketers, I've never seen information as a product. In my opinion, information should almost always be free. And with the wealth of free information floating around the internet on major authority sites, there is little reason to focus on selling courses when I can be making money applying that knowledge.

          As far as the meat of your comment goes, you're vastly over-thinking how to make money online.

          1) Find a niche that's interesting to you....something that could could talk to friends about for hours.

          2) Then, find out who else cares about that niche and what they're talking about. There's your initial market research and you can complete it very quickly.

          3) Build a blog. Not a sales site, not a product site...but just a blog. Don't worry about the design elements either, because the colors, layouts or the fonts are not what makes or breaks you. The content is. Everything in marketing is about content.

          4) Split testing, market strategy and all of those other terms should come much later in the process, so forget about them for a little while. There's nothing to split test if you aren't connecting to your ideal reader anyway.

          5) As for products or revenue...that comes later too. Because nothing screams "affiliate marketing site" faster than a site with 3 pages of copy and 14 ads. I don't buy from sites like that and neither do you, so focus only on entertaining your readers to start. So you only start with a product if it's something tangible that you made yourself (IE- not an eBook), if if you're building an online marketplace.

          6) Build your blog naturally by answering questions that are on people's minds. Don't give generic information, but really try to help people find legitimate answers to the things they're searching for.

          7) Next, get out in front of your community by going to the places they frequent. That's guest posting on authority blogs, participating in social conversations and making real-life connections through email and in person. You do this because you only want traffic that believes in what you're saying and gains value from it; random traffic won't do that.

          8) As long as you keep posting worthwhile content and building a brand the right way, people will start finding/following you. Then you can start thinking about monetization, mailing offers to your subscribers (twice a month MAX) and occasionally posting a paid ad or two.

          The average "guru course" tells you to do step one and step eight...and you skip over the entire relationship process that makes 100% of real businesses out there successful. But who should you believe? Companies like Amazon, eBay and Travelocity that gross five trillion per year, or an internet marketer selling a $79 course?

          When you go the straight IM route, you end up with a very big list with a very small percentage of subscribers that give a darn about what you're selling, and then the repeated ads gets you into their spam folder and you're literally marketing to no one without fresh leads. And that's a crazy business model for sustainable profit...which is why the average person here is either selling their own product or focusing on a hot new offer every other week.

          And I'm not knocking those people...some of them make tremendous amounts of money doing what they're doing. But it's not the "one size fits all" business model that it's made out to be and it's exactly why most here struggle to get started.

          I hope that helped.
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          • Profile picture of the author rsp73
            kk075 - I'll keep this short and sweet. Thank you!

            As others have said this is a super thread. I've skipped through the pages stopping mainly to read your own contributions.

            Either way, the discussion is refreshing and (alone) warrants the WF membership. I too rarely contribute. I am however thrilled at the conversation you have provoked. It's a shame some feel it necessary to look only to criticise. Still, at least a good many others understand what's really involved in making a go of being your own boss. Hard work, determination and a certain JFDI attitude.

            I write as a salaried employee who is determined to 'do my own thing' and to quit 'working for the man' once I can replace my salary.

            People like yourself who are willing to share the 'real' story of how you got where you are today - in sufficient detail we can relate to you - are few and far between. Often, I find inspiring people to listen to, read, etc. only to find they gloss over what it took to get started - perhaps because it's so far behind them they can't remember what it was like 'in the moment'.

            Anyway, enough rambling. Thanks again for sharing and inspiring so many people to contribute.
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            • Profile picture of the author kk075
              Originally Posted by rsp73 View Post

              kk075 - I'll keep this short and sweet. Thank you!

              As others have said this is a super thread. I've skipped through the pages stopping mainly to read your own contributions.

              Either way, the discussion is refreshing and (alone) warrants the WF membership. I too rarely contribute. I am however thrilled at the conversation you have provoked. It's a shame some feel it necessary to look only to criticise. Still, at least a good many others understand what's really involved in making a go of being your own boss. Hard work, determination and a certain JFDI attitude.

              I write as a salaried employee who is determined to 'do my own thing' and to quit 'working for the man' once I can replace my salary.

              People like yourself who are willing to share the 'real' story of how you got where you are today - in sufficient detail we can relate to you - are few and far between. Often, I find inspiring people to listen to, read, etc. only to find they gloss over what it took to get started - perhaps because it's so far behind them they can't remember what it was like 'in the moment'.

              Anyway, enough rambling. Thanks again for sharing and inspiring so many people to contribute.
              I feel proud that my story helped you get your first post out of the way,,,and it was a well-written one at that. Thank you for the compliments. And don't worry, I'm fine with the little bit of criticism that's here.

              It sounds like you're doing everything right as well; keep your job and just focus xx hours a week towards doing odds and ends on the side...whether it's writing a blog for your site, working for a client or just educating others. As with anything in life, it's that repetition that really helps you focus in on your goals and start to think outside the box enough to be completely original. It will be fairly obvious when the time is right for you to do your own thing 100%.

              Good luck though and thanks again for the kind words.
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  • Profile picture of the author sardiusjacinth
    Thank you for your inspiring story.

    Proof that hard work and perseverance

    are better than any shiny object.

    As for those who have doubts,

    please submit your step-by-step success story so we all can learn from it.

    Thanks.
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  • Profile picture of the author emmanuelkigen
    A truly inspirational story just goes to show that it is possible to make good money online with the right attitude, focus and determination. your work ethic and sense of determination is admirable.
    also great thoughts on seo,
    '' and you can't do that by trying to optimize for Google. Instead, optimize your sites for the people you're trying to connect with...and then Google will see your value. If you do that, then no Penguin or Panda update in the world can touch you.''
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  • Profile picture of the author Eagle07
    Oh my! I enjoyed reading the posts...really spent much time =)

    What I can add and emphasize is on really dedicating your efforts on something you want to earn.
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  • Profile picture of the author karlstech
    Wow this thread has received a lot of posts and views!

    Anyway, great stuff! I love these kind of success stories, doesn't matter if they're true or not. This one just has a feel-good sense to it!

    Best of luck in the future!

    Karl
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  • Profile picture of the author Samuel Wilson
    Truly uplifting post. Such stories make us keep holding on...
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  • Profile picture of the author tudexo
    What I really liked in your narration is the "never give up" attitude. Marketers fail because they get lazy and complacent - as simple as that.

    You rose, fell down, got hurt and again started limping off to the finish line that was always tantalizingly close - never touchable. That's what success is about. You strive to become successful, never become one.

    Great narration. Loved it.
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  • Profile picture of the author tchouken
    Thanks, this Just gave me enough emotional fuel to keep up grinding.
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  • Profile picture of the author Sujinb14
    informational as well as inspirational. Great story from start to success.

    thanks for sharing every stage of your successful business on internet.
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  • Profile picture of the author flyingdutch
    I think this is an excellent post from the OP. I've read the post AND the rest of the thread and this is what I have retained.

    1. Making it online, takes YEARS of hard effort. There is no such thing as 'overnight success'.
    2. Some people have what it takes and others (most of them) don't. The OP discovered more or less by accident that he was a good writer and that people would pay for his skills. And luckily he was smart enough to turn that skill into a flourishing business.
    3. The success rate is ridiculously low in IM. The OP talks about 3%, but I would estimate it even MUCH lower.
    4. Forget about trying to trick the system. Be it Google, Amazon, Ebay or whatever. Forget about sneaky backlink strategies. Just remain honest. Deliver good stuff (products, courses, advice or whatever) and if people like what you write (which is a VERY small percentage) you can make some real business online. All tricks of buying backlinks, selling 'how to become an overnight millionaire' etc.etc. will backfire on you, sooner or later
    5. When you post a story like this on a forum like this, people WILL check you out, and try to shoot holes in it. They consider for reasons that I don't understand, that if you aren't member of this forum and don't have 5000 posts, there's something fishy. Well, it isn't. There are probably LOTS of people who are doing very well on internet, without ever having been here.
    6. If you post here, and your story is NOT true, people WILL find the loopholes. Which is one more reason to remain honest in what you sell/promise/tell online. Some people still think that they can go unnoticed on internet (using pseudos and all kinds of other techniques) . That's another pipe dream. If you touch a keyboard, people can (with the appropriate skills) find out exactly who you are, what you have published/sold etc. Another reason to just remain yourself and honest.

    To resume: excellent post from the OP. !!
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    • Profile picture of the author kk075
      Originally Posted by flyingdutch View Post

      2. Some people have what it takes and others (most of them) don't.
      First, your post was excellent...thank you!

      The quote is the only part that I don't agree with though, because I think everyone can fall into that 1-3% if they really want to. All it takes is stepping out of your shell and saying, "Heck yeah, I'm going to go all-in on this idea and never stop working until I'm successful." You have to realize though; that's a terrifying step to take.

      For example, I mentioned that I used to own a pizza restaurant. Before that, I managed this company's entire franchise and trained all the managers. The original owner decided to retire though and the first thing the new owner did was fire me. This person decided that he was going to run the franchise himself and my big salary wasn't needed, so out the door I went.

      I was young at the time though (around 26) so this wasn't a big deal; I just took another job managing a different business. The original owner calls me up about four months later though and says, "The new owner is struggling and he's now on the verge of closing three stores. If you agree to take over the equipment loan and the lease on the one near your house, I'll give it to you outright...if you help me save the other stores until I can move back to that area."

      Now as an outsider looking in, it would appear that it's an awesome deal. But this meant quitting my job and going $90k into debt with a store that was failing. And I won't lie...I was absolutely terrified of making that type of commitment. My young wife was dead-set against it. My parents told me I was an idiot for even considering it.

      I took the deal though, quit my job the next day and worked a one week notice. Then I went to work saving a franchise when I really should have been focusing on my soon-to-be store, and I spent all but $180 of my savings on my first food order. Looking back, I was an idiot and destined for failure.

      I didn't fail though...I just kept working through it and refused to consider any other outcome. I went 15 months without a day off and that was fine, because that's how you become that 1-3% we were talking about. And within my first six month, sales had tripled from when I took it over. Costs were down almost 20%. I had an awesome staff that I genuinely liked and I forged my own career in life.

      Now, I won't lie...it wasn't all cherries and roses...and I seriously paid the price for opening a business when I was dead broke. But you have absolutely no idea how hungry it made me to succeed and how it changed everything about my business mentality, and you have to remember that I was a very successful regional manager before that.

      So yes...I think almost everyone could have done what I did in that situation, and hopefully that helps you understand where my drive came from as I started a writing career. To achieve that level of dedication though, you can't be an outsider looking for advice...you just have to dive in head first and decide that failure is not an option.
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  • Profile picture of the author woopshop
    Thanks a lot. Just 5 minutes after reading ur post I called my writer friend and we just accept a project from elance.
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  • Profile picture of the author mkersen
    Amazing story! The comment you made regarding google is so true! Thanks for sharing!
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  • Profile picture of the author James Hessler
    Great motivational story and exposition. And big kudos for taking time to write and share. It's unfortunate that some take offence and post negativity.

    I took inspiration from your post. As I do from many who 'live' here
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  • Profile picture of the author DogScout
    The story... so nicely told, may not be true, may not be partially true or be completely true...

    In any case, the 'value' of the post is the same. I remember several other recent members posting 'enlightening' posts that became enlightening treads with many in awe and many others in skepticism...

    In most of those past cases, even though it turned out some (most) of these posters were somewhat expansive in their recounting, a great amount of the ones that followed them without skepticism ended up making businesses that became $100,000+ businesses and are still successful today.

    (A thread by 'AP' netted an internet Juggernaut, 'Dex Knows', and a whole lot of local very successful 'off-line' marketing companies that as I mentioned are still in business today.)

    So a story, even stories that are made-up have their roots in reality and for one to make a story believable and inspiring, they need to make the story possible and inspiring. And inspiring others to rise above themselves is always a good thing... whether or not the story is 'true'

    I make no judgement because for me, the veracity of the story matters not... I choose to believe... sometimes even when I know the story is not true!

    "Just because a story is not true, does not mean it is false."
    ~DogScout
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  • Profile picture of the author Sparhawke
    It was an excellent first post, I am just trying to think of something I am really passionate about as you are lol
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  • Profile picture of the author SMworkcafe
    The question I should be asking myself is:

    "Did this post actually fulfilled it's purpose by motivating me to become better each day and stop discouraging myself from the fear of failure?"

    Yes it did. And, even if it's partially true, I would still be reading kk075's posts in future because I like the value I am getting from his posts/ replies i.e. mostly motivation for me.

    I am not a regular too. Does this make my response/ feedback/ comment/ whatever not worth reading? From a marketer's point of view, I wouldn't give a damn about who you are actually if you are providing value to me, some way or the other.

    I just signed in today to see the new threads on WF and this made my day!

    Thank you for sharing it.

    Sana.
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    Cheers!

    - Sana.

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  • Profile picture of the author Gabbarsingh
    This story is quite inspirational
    i have surely learnt a lot from it
    which i can apply to my bloggging hopefully.
    I could not stop reading your post right to the end ,surely you have good writing skills ..unlike me

    thanks for the write up
    gb
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  • Profile picture of the author dragees
    Beautiful story thank you for sharing
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  • Profile picture of the author Opheli
    Read your whole post and I must say it's fantastic. I signed up for Freelancer, Elance and odesk but the problem is hardly a single person accepts a bid from newbie and most of the employers get samples from you and never come back. What to do about it? any advice..
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    • Profile picture of the author kk075
      Thanks again for all the kind comments everyone. My thanks button is still disabled, but I've read every comment and genuinely appreciated it.


      Originally Posted by Opheli View Post

      Read your whole post and I must say it's fantastic. I signed up for Freelancer, Elance and odesk but the problem is hardly a single person accepts a bid from newbie and most of the employers get samples from you and never come back. What to do about it? any advice..
      When I first started out I experienced the exact same thing, so do not take it personally. On all of those sites it is strictly a numbers game, just like it is in every form of freelance job. Here are just a few reasons they might not hire you-

      - They hire someone before they read your proposal
      - They don't hire anyone at all
      - They like your proposal, but someone else's proposal was slightly better
      - They always hire the person with the lowest bid, regardless of quality
      - They only want top quality, so they only hire the highest bid

      I can literally go on and on because it's purely a numbers game. Even with one of the top profiles on Elance, I still bid on 3-5 jobs when I'm looking for one...and sometimes none of them reply. So all I can say is to keep your proposals short, custom write them for every job and Google that person's username before writing anything. Often, their Elance screen name will be the same as their Twitter account or something like that, so you get their name and insights on their business that other users don't have. So when you open your proposal with-

      Hi Karen!

      You guys are doing an awesome job over at ACME Corp and I'd love to help you with some fresh content!


      Something like that jumps off the page and you end up getting a reply anyway, and quite possibly the job. So do your homework! Also, look for a few low paying jobs with the titles like, "Unlimited $2 articles! Same Day Pay!" While that's an insult that makes me incredibly mad, that's also someone that you can write one article for and have one 5-star feedback a few hours later. So if you're stuck, do a few of those and consider it the cost of building a profile.

      Oh, speaking of profiles....spend some quality time on yours. Beef it up, make it shine, and then use your Google+ profile as a sample. On Google+, tell your personal story, link to all the jobs you've completed in the past, and show people that you're a true pro. Having your own bio website helps as well...which is really what my business site started out as. These types of things are your best tools for getting instant recognition though so use them!

      I hope that helps. Thanks again everybody for the kind words.
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  • Profile picture of the author Slade556
    Originally Posted by kk075 View Post

    So here's the best piece of advice you'll ever hear- Google has never changed. Not one bit. They only got better at meeting their original objective of making the site with the best content appear in the #1 slot, and you can't do that by trying to optimize for Google. Instead, optimize your sites for the people you're trying to connect with...and then Google will see your value. If you do that, then no Penguin or Panda update in the world can touch you.
    I know this paragraph was already quoted a couple of times, but I just have to say,you are absolutely right!
    I can't know if your story if true or not, but whatever the case is, it's quite inspirational and it just goes to show I was right all along: content should be written for the visitors, not for Google! It's the readers who will appreciate your website or will leave in 2 seconds!
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  • Profile picture of the author GaryCarlyle
    Some journey. I like how dedicated you are I found that really inspiring.
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  • Profile picture of the author SaeedKhan
    interesting with lots of good tips, especially the last paragraph, i agree 100% take massive action, and keep on doing the things you need to do. thanks.
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    • Profile picture of the author kk075
      Originally Posted by DogScout View Post

      The story... so nicely told, may not be true, may not be partially true or be completely true...

      ]
      I said on the first page that the story is 100% true, but you also have to realize I'm a writer by trade that typed that whole thing in one sitting....with a 103 fever and the flu. There are several things I'd change to make it more accurate since a few of the numbers are off.

      For example, when I said only 3 or 4 writers stuck it out...that didn't come out right. What I meant to say is that I still frequently work with 3 or 4 of those writers today. Dozens of others stuck it out though and went on to do their own thing, but that was after working together for months and soaking up lots of knowledge.

      So if you don't count the stuff like that, the story is as close to 100% true as you can get. I appreciate your comments and believing me though.

      Originally Posted by SMworkcafe View Post

      The question I should be asking myself is:

      "Did this post actually fulfilled it's purpose by motivating me to become better each day and stop discouraging myself from the fear of failure?"
      That was the plan...now get to work and become successful in your own ventures!

      That's what the voice in the back of your mind should sound like every single morning...pushing you along to bigger and better things.

      I appreciate your compliments too.

      Originally Posted by Gabbarsingh View Post

      This story is quite inspirational
      Thank you as well. I'm glad it inspired.

      Originally Posted by dragees View Post

      Beautiful story thank you for sharing
      No problem, my friend. Thank you for reading it.

      Originally Posted by Slade556 View Post

      I can't know if your story if true or not, but whatever the case is, it's quite inspirational and it just goes to show I was right all along: content should be written for the visitors, not for Google! It's the readers who will appreciate your website or will leave in 2 seconds!
      Exactly. The thing is, you could completely cheat the system 15 years ago...and you could get away with a good bit even 3-5 years back. Now look at those people though; their PR7 megasites are completely de-listed and the domains are selling for $19.95 on GoDaddy. So it definitely pays to do things the right way, whether Google is watching or not. And since you gain more customers from doing things the right way as well....why would anyone NOT try to be authentic on their websites?

      Originally Posted by GaryCarlyle View Post

      Some journey. I like how dedicated you are I found that really inspiring.
      Thanks Gary...I do have my moments and writing that post was definitely one of them. I struggle at times just like everyone else though, which is why I push others and ask them to push me right back. That's the only way we are going to be at our very best.

      Originally Posted by SaeedKhan View Post

      interesting with lots of good tips, especially the last paragraph, i agree 100% take massive action, and keep on doing the things you need to do. thanks.
      Thanks for the kind words. I 100% agree.

      Originally Posted by Sparhawke View Post

      It was an excellent first post, I am just trying to think of something I am really passionate about as you are lol
      Just keep looking and you'll eventually find it. Or maybe it's right there in front of you but you're letting life get in the way. In ether case though, just find your focus and doorways will begin to open.

      Thanks for the compliment too.
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  • Profile picture of the author timlazisa
    Excellent piece man, you have the same ethic that I applied to my plumbing and heating business years ago. Quality and commitment always win through at the end of the day.
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  • Profile picture of the author rkahn
    This is such amazing advice, really! Thanks much!
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  • Profile picture of the author Xkm
    Hi kk075

    Thank you the story of how you made the first million. It was very inspiring.

    I do have a question which I would like to ask if you don't mind (I am probably not the only one asking ).

    You are a writer by nature, what if I am not a good writer? Can someone be trained as one? If I do wish to go that path how should I train myself how to write? Would you mind give me some direction? (I know a lot of successful online marketers write very good sales copy and I believe this is a must for someone who wants to venture into this path)

    Thanks you very much of your time.

    Xkm
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    • Profile picture of the author kk075
      Originally Posted by Xkm View Post

      Hi kk075

      Thank you the story of how you made the first million. It was very inspiring.

      I do have a question which I would like to ask if you don't mind (I am probably not the only one asking ).

      You are a writer by nature, what if I am not a good writer? Can someone be trained as one? If I do wish to go that path how should I train myself how to write? Would you mind give me some direction? (I know a lot of successful online marketers write very good sales copy and I believe this is a must for someone who wants to venture into this path)

      Thanks you very much of your time.

      Xkm
      Honestly, a lot of people have asked me this over the years and it's tough to answer when we're not face to face. Because if you were sitting here in my office with me, I'd be able to see how serious you are about it, how motivated you seem and how far you are willing to go to become a solid writer.

      So when it comes to "can you be trained", the answer is yes...to a certain extent. You don't need me to help you with the basics though. Grab your favorite book. Turn to your favorite part. Find the most exciting paragraph on that page and re-write it in your own words. Then compare. What did the author do that you didn't? How could you make your paragraph better? It's applying that process to everything you read and write that helped me.

      But then again, I love to write....I absolutely love it and I always have. So that's what is pushing me to keep getting better. And trust me, sometimes I look at something I wrote 3 months ago and think, "That is complete garbage." Or I'll post a blog on my site and end up with 15 revisions, all because I keep reading it and aiming for perfection. That's the attitude you'd have to have in order to become a strong writer.

      I'll add one more thing as well. A TON of people from India, Pakistan, and other parts of the world have reached out to me over the years and begged me to train them. In most cases, I did exactly what I said in the story....I'd ask for a paragraph about something you know a lot about (your favorite food, favorite place, best childhood memory, etc). Most of these people would spend a week on that paragraph and when they sent it back, it was horrible. But I owed them at least a thorough edit with comments attached to show where they went wrong, and I absolutely blasted these poor people trying to encourage them to quit. At the same time though, I showed them every mistake and how it should have been written...or sometimes I might have even written a certain sentence 3-4 different ways.

      Only people from those regions wouldn't quit....they would thank me a dozen times and send me a second paragraph about two weeks later. And while I could see that they took my advice to heart and that they were giving it everything that had, there were still dozens of problems. Part of that is from HOW we speak English though....there are dozens of parts of the world who use English as a primary language, but our words, phrases and sentence structures are completely different. That's a massive obstacle that a foreign writer will never overcome 100%.

      So probably 99.95% of writers from foreign countries will never be able to be a journalist in the US. In ten years, I've trained only one...he was from Romania and many of his articles were better than what I write. I have helped many from India get steady work writing $10-20 articles though (which is big money there), so it really depends on your perspective. Can you be the next John Grisham? Probably not....but neither will I.

      I said all of that to say this- if you genuinely enjoy writing and want to try to make a career out of it, start doing what I'm doing right here...writing a lot of words and providing more detail on paper. That includes forum posts, blogs, emails and everything else you write....use the repetition to get better. Then, find something to write about every day and take your time editing through it, and continue that process daily. You don't need my help, a fancy degree or even a mentor to become a better writer...you just need to write and then get critical about what you could have done better.

      I hope that helps. I tried to be as thorough as possible since there are probably several others wondering the same thing.
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