College Degree or IM Business, your thoughts please

77 replies
Let me first say: I'M NOT ASKING YOU TO MAKE A DECISION FOR ME. I wanted to express what i'm going through and maybe you could give me some things to consider.

I'm a 37yo assistant. i have been at this job for 4 years and in this industry for about 12 years. I have been doing IM since 2009.

I have been thinking about going back to college and finish my degree in hopes of finding a better job. problem is I don't know what i want to do. I was going to get my degree in general studies or organizational studies from a well known school in my area.

going to get the degree online because i also have a family, wife and two kids. so that takes up a lot of time.

if i get the degree in three years, its possible to be in the same boat but i'll have a degree and more debt (student loans) or i could stay in IM trying to start my own business and in three years either be making money or in the same position as today.

the most money i have made online is $500 and that was due to flipping websites online. never made anything from article marketing or the 35 autobloggs with adsense.

i notice with im i continue to jump from strategy to strategy because I'm really not sure what works. the only thing that seemed to work was flipping sites. but that doesn't seem like real money.

the only thing I do know is that i do not want to be anyone's assistant any longer.

With having a family my time is limited so i want to do the best thing to help me put myself in a better position.

any thoughts you may have would be greatly appreciated.
#business #college #degree #thoughts
  • Profile picture of the author bnwebm
    I have both bachelor's and master's degrees, obtained the "old fashioned" way of going to classes, not that it matters. I don't directly use the degrees now, although I think what I learned helps me make connections with customers now. I was in my chosen field (I was a therapist) for 15+ years and needed a change. I don't regret having taken the time to get the degrees and in my mind, they are always there to fall back on, if necessary. They're a good back-up plan, especially if you have a family.
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  • Profile picture of the author JamesGw
    Meh. Degrees are severely devalued now, but it's hard to say how well IM will be doing in, say, a year or two. It's also difficult to gauge how successful you'll be with it. That said, being successful in another career isn't much easier. A degree isn't a free ticket to success; if you'll be successful in IM, you'll likely also be successful in a career.
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  • Profile picture of the author Alex Frei
    What I can tell you is that you can waste your time or use your time. And you can do it both in college and in your chair at home.
    If you're a genius, get into IM.
    If not, go to college and combine the two (IM + College).
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    • Profile picture of the author DocReed
      Cameron,

      This is an unusual post on this media because the vast majority of people are touting IM as THE alternative to college and/or a day job. It's also interesting to hear from someone who has been in IM for awhile and admits to not making much money.

      I find that it is easy to be pulled in a lot of directions in the IM world, so I can empathize about not being sure if the field is a viable way to make a living.

      However, I don't really think that investing in college (especially at your age of life) is a good idea. That statement needs at least a little explanation. I have a PhD (economics), so I'm certainly not anti-education. I'm 30 years older than you, so I'm not trying to say that you are old!

      What I am trying to imply is that today college is very expensive for what it provides economically. For example most people spend tens of thousands of dollars just to get a job paying in the $30s. Economically, that doesn't make sense, because it'll take years to breakeven over what they could make without the investment in "Human Capital" (education). For someone your age, it could take most of your effective remaining full-time worklife expectancy to breakeven.

      I say that because in essence you don't really have a realistic expectation of working an additional 30 years at full time work! Recent studies (from governmental and university studies) have revealed that there is a new "underclass" of workers. The new underclass is the 50+ age group of workers.

      Believe it or not, because of the economy (and A LOT of younger workers with "fresher skills" who are willing to work for less than people with your level of obligations NEED) a very significant number of people in that 50+ age group are losing their jobs and find it impossible to get back into the full-time workforce.

      If anything, I believe now is the time for you to concentrate on some type of independent income source for yourself. Hopefully, you can increase it to the point that you no longer need to be an assistant to someone.

      Good luck to you!

      Doc Reed
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      • Profile picture of the author bnwebm
        Excellent point and one I certainly missed in my post. If I had stayed in my field, after spending $80k on my education, I would have capped out at $42k a year. People don't pay you what they think you're worth, they pay you what YOU think you're worth. Fortunately, I saw the discrepancy in my future salary vs. student loans and made the jump into IM while still employed. I easily make almost twice my potential salary cap now, which is incredible.

        Originally Posted by DocReed View Post

        Cameron,

        What I am trying to imply is that today college is very expensive for what it provides economically. For example most people spend tens of thousands of dollars just to get a job paying in the $30s. Economically, that doesn't make sense, because it'll take years to breakeven over what they could make without the investment in "Human Capital" (education). For someone your age, it could take most of your effective remaining full-time worklife expectancy to breakeven.

        Doc Reed
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      • Originally Posted by DocReed View Post

        Today college is very expensive for what it provides economically. For example most people spend tens of thousands of dollars just to get a job paying in the $30Ks. Economically, that doesn't make sense, because it'll take years to breakeven
        I've been saying exactly this same thing for years: college is a highly inefficient path to wealth... Financially wise, it's hardly an optimal option!
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    • Profile picture of the author Fazal Mayar
      Originally Posted by Alex Frei View Post

      What I can tell you is that you can waste your time or use your time. And you can do it both in college and in your chair at home.
      If you're a genius, get into IM.
      If not, go to college and combine the two (IM + College).
      This is the best answer in my opinion, I would suggets same.
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      • Profile picture of the author theory expert
        Banned
        Originally Posted by Alex Frei View Post

        What I can tell you is that you can waste your time or use your time. And you can do it both in college and in your chair at home.

        This is a very true answer.

        Cameron I suppose you could be creative. Instead of college find a trade or do an apprenticeship on the Job in a field. I am not sure in what industry, but, I am sure you can figure something out if you think long enough about it.

        Good Luck.
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    • Profile picture of the author Aaron Siegel
      Originally Posted by Alex Frei View Post

      What I can tell you is that you can waste your time or use your time. And you can do it both in college and in your chair at home.
      If you're a genius, get into IM.
      If not, go to college and combine the two (IM + College).
      My thoughts exactly.
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  • Profile picture of the author Henry White
    I think we're in for much, much more decline in the global economy.

    The majority in Congress has already decided to play chicken with the economy and our Constitutional rights and freedoms, and they have already shifted into campaign mode for 2012, so I don't look for any meaningful action in DC unless their constituents start demanding it. We saw that in 2010, and they bloody well know that ignoring voters is a quick route to defeat, so maybe they're be more inclined to listen this time and not blow it off as "astro-turf."

    If you get serious about building your IM marketing business, you'll come out way ahead of the game - whatever else may happy with the election or the economy. You'd have to get a LOT of co-operation from you family and friends for the needed 15-20 hours a week for college, so funnel at least that much into building a business you can be proud of and that can bring you financial independence! Then you can go back to school without worries about incurring massive debt in the "hopes" of getting a better job - maybe - someday - if it isn't eaten up by higher taxes and inflation.
    (And if you know your history, we've seen this before - and it's playing out ominously like the last time.)
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  • Profile picture of the author advertisethis
    ISTM, it would be much more worthwhile of a consideration if the online college costs were more inline with local community colleges and certain more affordable state universities.

    Theoretically, a popular online/video college course should involve MUCH lower per-student overhead versus typical B&M private college classes and at least close to being inline with state university overhead after taking into consideration the government funding, but they still tend to charge the same or more for online classes. Lovely price gouging.
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  • Profile picture of the author Cameron Alex
    here's an idea of what I would be paying for State University Online courses: $590 per credit hour. I need 80 credits to graduate.
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  • Profile picture of the author travlinguy
    Unless you want technical skills that are only taught in college you might be better off without it. What I mean by technical skills is, medicine, engineering, and licensed professions. You'll need college for stuff like that.

    But as far as business goes, in my experience, you're better off learning that on your own. College business courses often teach theory that has little or no place in the real marketplace.

    Put that together with the high cost of college, along with all the arrogant professors who want to "mold" the youth today, and, once again, in my experience, you'll be wasting your time. Now if you want to party, that's something else all toghether.
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  • Profile picture of the author NateRivers
    I completely agree with what's been said about a degree not being a guarantee of anything... people that are go-getters and action-takers will rise to the top no matter what they're doing.
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  • Profile picture of the author Cameron Alex
    before I begin i want to thank everyone for there comments. I'm in the financial service industry and i used to think there was big money here. there is if you already have a book of business. all the other service/product positions either require you to be able to move around (again i have a family) or be someone's servant(assistant).

    I always thought you could make money with IM but as I have tried different things: ebooks, autoblogs, site flipping. none of these methods amount to much.

    I refuse to continue buying WSO after WSO to find a business model.

    I would love to work for myself but i get so frustrated when I can't seem to find a business model that works. I'll sacrifise the early cash for the long term riches but the more i continue following my plan (autoblogging and site flipping) i start filling as if i'm wasting my time.

    do you guys know or ever heard of anyone making a solid business form setting up autoblogs and flipping sites?
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  • Profile picture of the author bryemidas
    Sounds to me like you’ve already made up your mind…. But you’re trying to be practical… maybe for the family, I totally respect that… I would take IM every time, but maybe because I have a level of success, if I had to choose again I would still go for IM because apart from cash, I value time freedom… plus I hate having any kind of boss…
    Whatever you decide, give it a good shot…I.e. Don’t keep looking for the easy ride… just find a successful system and stick with it (for longer than you normally would!)… Its work and effort that get results… just like anything that’s worth having…
    Good Luck
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    • Profile picture of the author myob
      Don't let schooling interfere with your education.
      - Mark Twain
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      • Profile picture of the author ShaneBoyd
        Cameron,

        Why don't you do both?

        I'm 33 years old, married with 2 kids. I own and operate a home inspection company and I'm a full time student. I make very little money in the IM game, however things are improving.

        My goal is to work full time by helping others get and do what they want to get and have. AKA, sell products via a website that helps other people. (in case you didn't pick up on that...THAT is IM)

        However, I'll have my 4 year degree in marketing in just under 2 years from now...then I'll work towards my Masters. With that degree I'd like to be a marketing director for a large company (preferably Disney).

        College for me is plan B. And honestly, I can see no harm in it. I'm in the financial bracket that my 1st 2 years of college I have a pell grant for, so it's free. So look into financial aid, there are A LOT of grants out there.

        I'll only have a loan for 2 years of college, which is not that much really. About $35,000 for the college I'll be attending.

        In the mean time, my current goal is to make my part time income (IM) my full time income by 2012.

        So let me ask you again. Why can't you do both? College and IM?

        Good luck,

        Shane
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        • Profile picture of the author Cameron Alex
          Originally Posted by ShaneBoyd View Post

          Cameron,

          Why don't you do both?

          I'm 33 years old, married with 2 kids. I own and operate a home inspection company and I'm a full time student. I make very little money in the IM game, however things are improving.

          My goal is to work full time by helping others get and do what they want to get and have. AKA, sell products via a website that helps other people. (in case you didn't pick up on that...THAT is IM)

          However, I'll have my 4 year degree in marketing in just under 2 years from now...then I'll work towards my Masters. With that degree I'd like to be a marketing director for a large company (preferably Disney).

          College for me is plan B. And honestly, I can see no harm in it. I'm in the financial bracket that my 1st 2 years of college I have a pell grant for, so it's free. So look into financial aid, there are A LOT of grants out there.

          I'll only have a loan for 2 years of college, which is not that much really. About $35,000 for the college I'll be attending.

          In the mean time, my current goal is to make my part time income (IM) my full time income by 2012.

          So let me ask you again. Why can't you do both? College and IM?

          Good luck,

          Shane
          Thanks Shane,

          I appreciate your comment. I have thought about doing things like you mentioned but I feel myself spreading too thinly. College requires a lot of study time if you want A's and some B's and full time work can be taxing too. I'm not saying you aren't making the grades but it just seems like a bit much.

          The last thing i'm trying to do is create ANY debt at all. I have a mortgage but both are my cars are paid, I took my kids out of private school so that bill is paid ($11k/yr per child) so I'm trying to stay debt free.

          Not ashamed to say it but I make $50k a year. some say its good for no degree but I would ultimately like to make more.
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      • Profile picture of the author danej
        Originally Posted by myob View Post

        Don't let schooling interfere with your education.
        - Mark Twain
        I was seriously going to put that also.

        I will never regret getting my degree, given, it's in this field anyways (computer science). But, you learn many other skills besides the classes. Different point of views, social interaction (I've partnered with a lot of people I went to college with), connections, etc. College FTW!
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  • Profile picture of the author yicob
    Getting a certificate won't be a bad idea but it doesn't guarantee you a better job. If IM is not working for you, maybe you try OM ( Offline Marketing). It's somehow difficult to risk especially when you have extra mouths to feed.
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  • Profile picture of the author lucky777
    I think college is a waste of time. Most people leave with huge debts. I cant think of one good reason why anyone should go to college.
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  • Profile picture of the author Doran Peck
    Pursuing a job is a waste of time. Thus spending time doing anything to help you get a job is a waste of time.

    In a "Job" you trade away your precious time for a pittance of a wage....even with a degree you will still be earning a pittance. There is always a cap on what you can earn...always.

    In a "Job" your time is put to keeping someone else living their dream, instead being in your own.

    Pursuing IM is great and all ...but you could be forever doing that. The real money is offline. - Providing services to established businesses. There is plenty of marketing work to be done in the world.

    The education in this forum is equal to or superior to any college degree on the subject.
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    • Profile picture of the author Cameron Alex
      thanks Doran, could you expand a little on the offline marketing work.

      Originally Posted by Doran Peck View Post

      Pursuing a job is a waste of time. Thus spending time doing anything to help you get a job is a waste of time.

      In a "Job" you trade away your precious time for a pittance of a wage....even with a degree you will still be earning a pittance. There is always a cap on what you can earn...always.

      In a "Job" your time is put to keeping someone else living their dream, instead being in your own.

      Pursuing IM is great and all ...but you could be forever doing that. The real money is offline. - Providing services to established businesses. There is plenty of marketing work to be done in the world.

      The education in this forum is equal to or superior to any college degree on the subject.
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      • Profile picture of the author Doran Peck
        Originally Posted by Cameron Alex View Post

        thanks Doran, could you expand a little on the offline marketing work.
        Cameron, the thing about offline money...you have to actually deal with other human beings...who reject you from time to time.

        If your not willing to do that for your family...then you should just take the easy road and land a job and hit the books (That statement is not just meant for Cameron)

        Local businesses need these services...
        You can either learn how to do it yourself or find a source and be the broker.

        Facebook Fanpage...build it and manage it
        best way to get a client? ...build their page first on a test account then offer it to them ..I did this one time, putting action to a WSO from Martin Crumlish...it worked just like he said it would.

        Local Google Ranking ( places listing)
        I've done this twice, following the steps in a WSO/offline program by Sam Bakker and Wynne Perini.

        You do not need WSO's necessarily ...just learn how to do it and go contact someone who needs it done.

        SMS marketing services...Mobile website building...these services I have not personally offered (yet) but have helped others advertise.

        My own thing is direct mail and printing...industires that I have worked in for just short of two decades. I havn't had a job for approaching 5 years. One day I just up and purchased my own mailing equipment, and started offering direct mail services. That expanded to digital printing, graphic design etc. The high end offset printing I broker out. I simply manage the workflow. You would be suprised to find out how many fairly well known online printers are actually brokers.

        Set up a prebuilt storefront and sell physical products...export them, or contact wholesalers.

        There is so much more out there than online Niche marketing.

        Heres to your success!

        Doran
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        • Profile picture of the author Justin Goff
          Personally, I feel like unless you're in an industry that REQUIRES a degree you are wasting a lot of money and time (lawyer, doctor etc.)

          With this economy I dont really see the upside to getting a general degree. People are not hiring for the sake of hiring. They are looking for people to improve their bottomline.

          Helping small businesses with their online marketing is probably the best niche you can get into right now. You can easily make $5k per month with just a few clients.

          - Justin
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          • Profile picture of the author Henry White
            Originally Posted by Justin Goff View Post

            Personally, I feel like unless you're in an industry that REQUIRES a degree you are wasting a lot of money and time (lawyer, doctor etc.)

            With this economy I dont really see the upside to getting a general degree. People are not hiring for the sake of hiring. They are looking for people to improve their bottomline.

            Helping small businesses with their online marketing is probably the best niche you can get into right now. You can easily make $5k per month with just a few clients.

            - Justin
            Spot on, Justin! Up until WWII (discounting the Depression) a mere high school diploma was a very big deal! If you'll listen, you'll hear elementary students in your neighborhood who are obsessing over getting a college degree!

            The costs are bad enough, but to add insult to injury, very few of the courses really prepare graduates for the 21st century. Like the Pentagon, K-12 and higher education are preparing the current generation for the last generation's social, economic and political environment.

            By all means, go into business for yourself! Then you don't have to worry about "if" or "when" the economy turns around, or any of that trickle down effect that always seems to eaten up in hidden taxes and inflation. Create your own stimulus plan!
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          • Originally Posted by Justin Goff View Post

            Personally, I feel like unless you're in an industry that REQUIRES a degree you are wasting a lot of money and time (lawyer, doctor etc.)

            With this economy I dont really see the upside to getting a general degree. People are not hiring for the sake of hiring. They are looking for people to improve their bottomline.
            I agree. People think that holding a degree is a sure way to have a job, but the current crisis has proven otherwise. It's not uncommon now a days to see young graduates job-hunting for months without luck.
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  • Profile picture of the author celente
    I have both and even worked ona stock exchange floor. Funny thing is that I make more money with my online stuff nowadays. So its well worth it.

    But if i fail I have a degree to back me up. You must think about what you want to do. Get a job, or work for yourself. I love helping people out. So it was IM for me. 8 niches keeps me off teh street at night too.
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    • Profile picture of the author DWolfe
      I went back in my Mid 40's while running a day time business. I got to the point the degree is still along way off and I want out of the day time job. " If I do not work, I do not get paid."
      Last year I stopped going to college and tried to create passive income.
      That has led me to this forum recently. My main point is try to create enough passive income to quit the day job. Than at a later date you can get the degree.

      If you do choose to get that degree expect to scarafice alot of time, energy and money.

      Here are two offline methods you can veiw also

      http://www.warriorforum.com/offline-...marketing.html


      http://www.warriorforum.com/offline-...knowledge.html
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  • Profile picture of the author Daniel Brock
    Originally Posted by Cameron Alex View Post


    i notice with im i continue to jump from strategy to strategy because I'm really not sure what works. the only thing that seemed to work was flipping sites. but that doesn't seem like real money.

    the only thing I do know is that i do not want to be anyone's assistant any longer.
    Re-read those two lines you wrote about 20 times and then come back here and tell us what you think
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  • Profile picture of the author pmbrent
    Going back to college you will increase your debt or have to pay out of pocket and then "try" to find a better job. But then you may not find a job that will return as much as you paid in tuition. Having recently graduated from college and now face those infamous student loan payments, I strongly suggest just starting your own business, atleast you'll see a return from your investments.
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  • Profile picture of the author dick.l
    I am in my 50's, consider I have mostly been there done that and have made many mistakes along the way. I say this for one reason, that I am not that different to most other people but I do realise that I should have always done what I liked to do, not necessarily done what produced the most financial reward - suggestion; sit down with a piece of paper and decide your goals with your partner, plan what you both want from your life and then set a realistic target time to have it done - and work toward the goals together - in the end you will get what you have planned and deserve and all along you will be doing what you like - you may not be as "rich" financially as some who hate their jobs but you will have the richness of quality of life - it will all take time - it appears that with IM you have jumped from one thing to another - IM is not different to College - it all takes time and persistence to be the winner - Good luck for the future
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  • Profile picture of the author Cameron Alex
    i really appreciate all the comments and suggestions. I have been on this forum for sometime and never really looked into offline marketing. one poster quoted a sentence and asked me to read it 20 times and respond. I didn't read it exactly 20 times but I did put offline marketing and that quote together, thinking of starting my own web design company. Since I have made some money from flipping websites I've created why not just keep creating websites for companies. again I thank you guys for your comments.

    Cameron
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  • Profile picture of the author Cameron Alex
    contentment1st - I apologize, i am not able to send pm. the industry i have worked in is in the financial services/brokerage industry.
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    • Profile picture of the author JohnMcCabe
      Cameron, when I saw the subject line for this thread, I figured it must be getting on to graduation time again. Seems like every year we get a rash of posts from kids asking if they should go to college or work an IM business. Those threads tend to get the same response - those who skipped college or dropped out stump for that option, those who finished college push that one.

      You are in a much different place.

      $590 per credit for online courses seems awfully high to me. Are you set on the program of your state college? It might save you a bundle to shop around, since you plan on attending online anyway.

      If you have, can develop, or eventually hire, the people skills, you can build a solid business offering marketing services to local businesses. Of course, you have to be able to deliver on what you sell, but I'm betting you knew that.

      One option would be to use an after-hours business to build a war chest for your college fees. If you later decide not to go, that money is available to pay a chunk of your mortgage, add to your retirement accounts, fund your kids' college or even a second honeymoon...
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  • Profile picture of the author colie3188
    College was home to some of the BEST years of my life... I mean SOCIALLY it was AWESOME, FINANCIALLY it was a DISASTER!

    I wouldn't change it for the WORLD, now I've got all the time in the WORLD to make up for 4 YEARs of HARDCORE partying, well worth the investment in Alcohol and loafing around with no responsibilities.

    So I'll definitely say college for the social aspect or if you're looking to go into a profession (Doctor, Teacher, Architect, ect.)

    That's just me, each to their own
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    • Originally Posted by colie3188 View Post

      I mean SOCIALLY it was AWESOME, FINANCIALLY it was a DISASTER!
      LOL I love that quote
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  • Profile picture of the author Enis
    If I were you, I'd just get the money that you have for college and invest it into some profitable business. That way at least you'll know that you'll be secure for a while and grow your business eventually.
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  • Profile picture of the author IMWinner
    Personally, I have nothing against IM Business and College Degree, in fact, I just finished my Master's Degree last year and at the same time, been working for my IM Business. I mean, there's nothing to choose between the two, since both have Pros and Cons, which of course, you will have the weight to see if what really pulls you closer to it.
    Having a Degree, like most had underwent, usually takes time since you will have to go to school, spends some dollars on tuition fees and others like books. You have to commit yourself in attaining that degree by hard work, focus and determination.
    Same as in the IM Business. When you start to have your business in the IM world, it also takes your time as you will have to spend more hours in front of the computer. And the same as going to a university, you have to learn and study the basics, the mechanics and the concepts regarding a certain activities to be able to familiarize yourself on what and how to do it.
    In other words, you just have to manage your time by spending some time doing your IM business and devote focus and time studying your subject for that degree.
    At your age now, you mentioned that you are 37, basically, the question that I may want to ask you is that what will you do after you finished and acquired your degree? How old will you be? I mean, where would you work and by then, probably you will be 40 years old or more.
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  • Profile picture of the author ebusinesstutor
    I am a believer in life-long learning, of which college can play a part. But in your case, I think you should keep your job while you explore setting up your own business/service to make money so you don't need to work for others.

    The problem with many of the so-called "make money fast" methods of IM is that they don't work for the majority of people. Especially anything with the word "auto" in it.

    They all miss the first step. Who is your target community? What are their needs? Can you find/create/offer products and services to help them while making a profit.

    And is this a field/community you are passionate about?
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  • Profile picture of the author blillard
    Do both and keep flipping sites. Stop jumping from one method to the next.
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    • Profile picture of the author HigherPrThanGod
      Right now college is a losing proposition.

      millions of people are going to college thinking great things.

      The problem is - virtually anyone can get a

      degree now because of govt assistance.

      So, even though you might pay 100k to 300k for your degree

      It's not going to be worth much. Then you'll have to pay all of that back.

      Stay away, far away from college. In the next few years this problem

      will become more obvious.
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  • Profile picture of the author tpw
    The best answer is "both".

    Some people are naturally successful with IM and that allows the individual to decide his/her own future.

    Some people naturally suck at IM, and in those cases, the individual is better off with a job.

    By investing in both, you have something to fall back on if IM does not work out for you.
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  • Profile picture of the author Steven Miranda
    If you can get an education from a good college without going into significant debt I would suggest it but otherwise it will be death. You COULD get our of school with your nice piece of paper (degree) and not be able to get a job and you could have 30k -100k or more in debt. Is it worth it?

    I would always continue educating yourself on internet marketing in any spare time you might have. Like anything it is a ongoing process.
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  • Profile picture of the author DrAlexMV
    All this talking about how a degree is not going to worth much is ridiculous. Do a little research for yourself and you will see that the starting salary for any engineering degree is $70,000+/year. Do some further research to notice that there is a huge growing demand for certain jobs (Germany recently started recruiting a huge number of engineers at very high rates). You cannot go into college and study ART APPRECIATION with the expectations to make real money.

    Someone here said that business degrees are useless: very far away from the truth. Your average CPA accountant makes close to 6 figures a year and can quickly escalate through the corporate ladder. An MBA also has a lot of worth (many companies pay their execs to take MBA classes).

    At 37 years you are not an old man, specially when the retirement age is going to get an increase in the next years. I suggest that you go into college and study a profitable career. Research after research has concluded that people with a college degree make substantially better money and live substantially better lives than those who do not.

    Use IM to pay for your degree and apply to several government grants. The problem solving skills that you will acquire in a degree will help you in any business. On the other hand, any jobs nowadays requires a degree (competition is that high).
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    • Profile picture of the author Hardy Chou

      Originally Posted by DrAlexMV View Post

      All this talking about how a degree is not going to worth much is ridiculous. Do a little research for yourself and you will see that the starting salary for any engineering degree is $70,000+/year. Do some further research to notice that there is a huge growing demand for certain jobs (Germany recently started recruiting a huge number of engineers at very high rates). You cannot go into college and study ART APPRECIATION with the expectations to make real money.

      Someone here said that business degrees are useless: very far away from the truth. Your average CPA accountant makes close to 6 figures a year and can quickly escalate through the corporate ladder. An MBA also has a lot of worth (many companies pay their execs to take MBA classes).

      At 37 years you are not an old man, specially when the retirement age is going to get an increase in the next years. I suggest that you go into college and study a profitable career. Research after research has concluded that people with a college degree make substantially better money and live substantially better lives than those who do not.

      Use IM to pay for your degree and apply to several government grants. The problem solving skills that you will acquire in a degree will help you in any business. On the other hand, any jobs nowadays requires a degree (competition is that high).
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  • Originally Posted by Cameron Alex View Post

    Let me first say: I'M NOT ASKING YOU TO MAKE A DECISION FOR ME. I wanted to express what i'm going through and maybe you could give me some things to consider.

    I'm a 37yo assistant. i have been at this job for 4 years and in this industry for about 12 years. I have been doing IM since 2009.

    I have been thinking about going back to college and finish my degree in hopes of finding a better job. problem is I don't know what i want to do. I was going to get my degree in general studies or organizational studies from a well known school in my area.

    going to get the degree online because i also have a family, wife and two kids. so that takes up a lot of time.

    if i get the degree in three years, its possible to be in the same boat but i'll have a degree and more debt (student loans) or i could stay in IM trying to start my own business and in three years either be making money or in the same position as today.

    the most money i have made online is $500 and that was due to flipping websites online. never made anything from article marketing or the 35 autobloggs with adsense.

    i notice with im i continue to jump from strategy to strategy because I'm really not sure what works. the only thing that seemed to work was flipping sites. but that doesn't seem like real money.

    the only thing I do know is that i do not want to be anyone's assistant any longer.

    With having a family my time is limited so i want to do the best thing to help me put myself in a better position.

    any thoughts you may have would be greatly appreciated.
    The University of San Francisco has a Certificate course on Internet Marketing. It seems to be implied by their website that it is for people who want to get a job in the SEO and SEM field. It's a 3-course deal that costs a total of $5,995. It's a top level school.

    Since you want to be in IM and finish college too, perhaps it's for you.
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    • Profile picture of the author Eyetrap
      *I have a business degree and now support my family 100% from IM.

      1) First of all find a cheaper college. $500+/hr is way too high and absolutely ridiculous. *Find a state college or community college, you'll end up with the same degree and owe a lot less. *You're not going to learn anything that is incredibly helpful unless your very specific like an engineer or doc.

      2) what is your plan and why do you feel you need a 4 year degree? What job do you want that requires a 4 year degree? *Don't just get a degree to get a degree.

      3) focus on makIng quality sites, not crappy autoblogs or other gimmics. Create sites that help people find what they're looking for.

      4) my favorite idea - spend part of the amount you would on your overpriced college and buy a successful website that could support your family now.
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      • Profile picture of the author MValmont
        I have a bachelor degree in business from a top University, and the bottom line is this :

        I learned more at my local library in my free time than in my classes...


        It all depends of what your goals are. If you want to work in a bank; Then you will have to go to school. If you want to make mone on the internet ; Then learn about internet marketing

        V.
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    • Profile picture of the author emory27
      i have 2 degrees and am now a full time internet marketer, i wouldnt be here without them though. In the end i know that i can always go out and get a 9-5 job if i really wanted.

      im glad i got my degrees and think its worth it to be among the educated masses. Im not saying that you cant educate yourself but with a degree comes a certain level of respect from your clients as well.
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    • Profile picture of the author tpwilliams
      Waoh! I love this topic of discussion. Seriously, degree will only earn you a living while Internet Marketing when done right with the right tools and business model will earn you a life and give you financial freedom.

      But realistically, it takes time to build such a business model online. My motto has always been persistent and focus. When I started out online in 2004, I was jumping from one thing to the other hoping to make money. But I tell you, for good 1 year online, I didn't make 0.00cent...lol If you understand what I'm saying.

      So, one day, I said to myself that I was going to stop buying all the gurus stuff and focus on what works using my intuition and since then I have never looked back.

      My honest opinion for you is to have the degree and also keep doing your IM thing alongside with focus, concentration and attention. And sooner or later, you will find that goldmine and your mind will tell you that is it. When that happens, all other things will fight for your attention as well, but don't succumb. Just focus on that one thing and you will start to see the beauty of life.

      Hope this helps.
      Your Millionaire Friend
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  • Profile picture of the author kiddi
    I recommend you do both, I'm having great success with my blog while being a full-time medical student.
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  • Profile picture of the author espe
    Originally Posted by Terry Gorry View Post

    Why does it have to be either/or?

    You can do both and give yourself a safety net..
    exactly and also "knowledge does not occupy a physical place"
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  • Profile picture of the author uebomoyi
    I saw the video Hardy Chou put up and I must say that I agree with it completely. I believe college is a conspiracy and I feel that they are out to put people in debt and make them subject to economic disparities. If I was you, I wouldn't put all my eggs in one basket for the college degree. I would focus on it part time and make my online business part time as well.
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  • Profile picture of the author Rukshan
    I have a Engineering degree and work in a company as an engineer. Still IM is my part time income to keep a well balanced life.
    I think you are bit late for higher education with a family. Why don't you focus IM much and scale the amount of income? Just my 2 cents
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  • Profile picture of the author richgrad
    I've never actually used my honours degree... If I were you, I'd put the money into IM but hey that's just me (Disclaimer: I did benefit a lot from my college education...)
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  • Profile picture of the author murtuza
    I personally feel you have a mindset issue, seriously. Being in IM since 2009 and grabbing a whole bunch of products I am pretty sure that you know lots of stuff. Infact you have the knowledge to earn a decent income online or atleast get started but your major problem is application. You don't know the right way to apply things. The solution to your problem is not getting another ebook or course and learn how to do online business. Infact your solution is that you have to be focussed.

    You have to realise that money is everywhere. Money is being made by flipping sites right now or else FLIPPA would not have been a huge success.

    Money is being made thru auto blogs, there are numerous case studies everywhere.

    Money is being made thru list building, article marketing, product creation and lots more.

    The only thing you need to do is have a burning desire to achieve ONE MAJOR DEFINITE PURPOSE in life.

    In a nutshell, focus on one and only one thing, your goal should be major, it should be deifinite and be persistent because you will face lots of failures before you reach your goal. If you jump from one place to another nothing is going to happen.

    Before doing anything else I would advise you to read 'Think and Grow Rich' book. Then search on google and read 'The Secret Behind Think and Grow Rich' ebook, but before reading this ebook read think and grow rich atleast 2 times. You will find the reason to your failure, I bet that.

    I have gone thru the same position you are going thru right now, I failed miserably my first 4 years online but these 2 books put me on track. I wish you all the very best and success...
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  • Profile picture of the author simonbuzz
    Banned
    I think you should do both....online business can be done with only 2 or 3 hours of work..
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  • Profile picture of the author Mike Antoni
    It's funny because these "college or IM" threads seem to pop up every so often and they are always hotly debated. One of my first threads here at the WF way back in 2006 I believe was about the same topic.

    I was in school at the time. I can't give you advice, I can only say what happened to me (basically tell you my story, short and sweet.)

    After flopping around in college and trying various "ventures" online (and off) I finally got to the point where I started making money (good money) online. My studies trailed off and I basically dropped out of school to grow my very profitable enterprise.

    I now consult and charge a lot of money making marketing systems for business owners. I have never had someone ask me if I have a degree or not before they decide to work with me.

    As a matter of fact, I almost spin the whole degree thing in my favor by saying, "I'm just one of those guys meant to be a rich college dropout."

    But honestly, there's still a part of me that's wants that bachelors and an MBA so bad. Maybe it's just so I feel good, I don't know. So, even though I make more money than most graduates, I still have a part of me that wants to feel "accomplished" in that area.

    So, at some point, someday, I just may return to college and be a real pain to my erudite professors.

    Mike Antoni

    PS - Don't let my lack of a degree fool you. I guarantee I have read more books, done more training, and written more content than 95% of college graduates. On average, I read at least 1 marketing book per week, and buy (and actually read!) just about anything new in my industry.
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  • Profile picture of the author PaulV
    It all depends on what you're truly passionate about.

    Some people have a driving passion to pursue college and would feel empty or unfulfilled years down the road if they did not get their special degree.

    Personally, I feel like college is not what it once was anymore. However, I am glad I went through and got my Bachelor's degree when I did. It was more of a family obligation than anything else.

    Most old timers grew up in a day of age where a degree meant something significant. Sure it does say you have the discipline to go through college. By now there are so many college grads that cannot use their degrees and find themselves working tables at a restuarant so they can pay off student loans.

    I feel like internet marketing has far greater potential than spending another 4 years in school and getting burried in debt.

    However, some people are very fascinated at a particular subject and view it as thier life's direct. And I can certainly respect that.
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  • If you want somebody to eventually hire you, go to college and cross your fingers.

    If you want to just make money, get a B.S. part-time job and dedicate yourself to making money in I.M. Take a "failure is NOT an option" attitude and you WILL make money.
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  • Profile picture of the author Sarevok
    Do both man.



    I have a full time job (I.T. security related), goto school full time (Graduate School), and I still IM on the side.

    One of the wisest men I've ever known once told me "You're only old when you stop learning."

    Good luck to you sir.
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    • Profile picture of the author asc
      Same boat, i took the plunge last year and went back to school. Wish i hadnt really - the more i learn about the industry of digital media, the more i realise that i really didnt need a qualification. Lots of jobs do say degree/graduate required and ive been in touch and not even had a look in, but lots simply ask for a portfolio. So 3 years degree costing x amount, plus NOT working for all that time im at college - or 3 years teaching myself the skills covered on that course, or the skills people are actually asking for. If i focused on say photoshop, flash and dreamweaver 5 days a week for 3 years or college - i think both my skills and my pocked would be better off. But halfway through the course and it will be of benefit.....

      Depending on what you want to do really. If it requires a degree, do it, if not (ie portfolios) then dont!!

      good luck
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  • Profile picture of the author onegoodman
    First, i would say when someone ask me what i do and I say online business, some people think i am kind of a looser as they know nothing about IM or SEO, and their idea about working online means I am homeless selling some items on ebay, now once we get into the conversation and I point out that I have M.S. in Information Security, I see them get silent and ashamed of themselves for making fun in the first place.

    I would say your degree is a must not because of what people say and not because of what you can do, but simply because what you will gain. I would say before my B.S. and after the way I look at things are different, it is the experience you going through is what really count. The same goes on master.

    You need the degree because simply it will help you look at things differently regarding less if you decided to work with it or not.
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  • Profile picture of the author swilliams09
    You have a family to take care of. Honestly, I would start a service based business while I learned more about IM. And I would download the course sylabus for classes you would take and research those topics IF they help you improve your business. If you need to learn more about marketing, get some books or take a class. If you need to learn more about finances, books or class. Your quest for knowledge should be only in the service of your business. Example. My Dad just gave me a great book on contracts and law for my state. I'm reading it and talking to my lawyer buddy about what applies to my business. I'm also re-reading my college text book on direct marketing to refresh on the basics. I have two more books on direct marketing in my Amazon wishlist.

    I have a family and bills, I don't have time to make money and go to school. But I do have time to learn more in my spare time to grow my business. If you can pick and choose classes online that will work towards your degree and help you grow your business and take them on your own schedule, then you are winning the game.

    That being said, if you were some young kid with no responsibilities, I'd say do both as it will broaden your horizons and give you time to really understand what you are trying to do in life, whilst also meeting cute girls. Seriously, I loved college girls back in the day. Good luck!
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  • Profile picture of the author YasirYar
    Originally Posted by Cameron Alex View Post

    Let me first say: I'M NOT ASKING YOU TO MAKE A DECISION FOR ME. I wanted to express what i'm going through and maybe you could give me some things to consider.

    I'm a 37yo assistant. i have been at this job for 4 years and in this industry for about 12 years. I have been doing IM since 2009.

    I have been thinking about going back to college and finish my degree in hopes of finding a better job. problem is I don't know what i want to do. I was going to get my degree in general studies or organizational studies from a well known school in my area.

    going to get the degree online because i also have a family, wife and two kids. so that takes up a lot of time.

    if i get the degree in three years, its possible to be in the same boat but i'll have a degree and more debt (student loans) or i could stay in IM trying to start my own business and in three years either be making money or in the same position as today.

    the most money i have made online is $500 and that was due to flipping websites online. never made anything from article marketing or the 35 autobloggs with adsense.

    i notice with im i continue to jump from strategy to strategy because I'm really not sure what works. the only thing that seemed to work was flipping sites. but that doesn't seem like real money.

    the only thing I do know is that i do not want to be anyone's assistant any longer.

    With having a family my time is limited so i want to do the best thing to help me put myself in a better position.

    any thoughts you may have would be greatly appreciated.
    Further education is always better although if you try to earn money using only your degree, you will get paid like everyone else.

    I have an MBA from Canada and have not really used a lot of what I learnt in my online business. But this degree has allowed me to become a better business man.

    I would suggest doing both if your time permits.
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  • Profile picture of the author Bballer1
    I always feel that getting a degree is your best bet in having a successful career or giving you a comfortable life. However, considering your age, plus the current economic situation, I wouldn't think it would be practical anymore. There are few available jobs and you'll get stiff competition from the younger ones. I would suggest that you find something that would augment your income...with the potential to replace your income in the long run. Start small but think big.
    Grab a copy of "Rich dad poor dad" by Robert Kiosaki. You'll get a lot of ideas from the book.
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  • Profile picture of the author RatRaceWatch
    There's so much information out there, but doing things the old way is not going to work anymore. If your unsettled working for someone else, most likely you'll always feel that way. There's a book by Robert Kiyosaki called Unfair Advantage (it's fairly recent), and even though I've read a lot of books that have opened my eyes, none had the level of impact as that one.

    It's a tough road ahead, this is a great forum, there a lot of successful people, and there are a lot of newbies (myself being one). Of course you can't throw away your obligation to take care of your family (not that you would), you have to keep in mind that everything you do has a domino effect.

    If your not happy with your job/career, then that can trickle into your personal life whether you realize it or not. Sometimes you just have to go full force with something. Maybe instead of spreading yourself too thin, you should pick one or the other so you can give it your undivided attention.

    For example: You could give IM a year and a half, build relationships with people in the forum, and focus on a few things that have had proven success (do not get off track), and keep working at it through the ups and downs until you see the final results.

    Just my 2 cents.

    Best of luck to everyone, and may we all get what we dream for out of this life :0

    - Ryan
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  • Profile picture of the author That Guy
    If you go to university it better be to work in a practical field. Right now, I'm still a teen and from our perspective, we go because of the social pressure and a sense of obligation. Parents are proud when their kid got accepted into a good school and going off having the higher education that they never had.

    But the issue is that a large portion of the people who graduated from my high school had no idea what they wanted to do with their lives. They accepted a program that admitted them and went with the flow. In my opinion, striving for a professional degree like becoming an engineer, lawyer, doctor, accountant, etc is the only smart move to make. Otherwise you will be sunk in debt that you can't pay off and you would have lost 4 years of valuable work experience.
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    • Profile picture of the author RatRaceWatch
      But even some of the professional degrees are on a rocky slope, there are a lot of low-wage and broke lawyers....
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  • Profile picture of the author BenKJunya
    More employers require job applicants to have a degree or else they don't consider. Promotion stops candidates without a degree. Experience, no matter how good it may be, isn't enough, especially when other candidates competing for the same position have a degree. College graduates have more jobs choices than candidates who don't. Having a degree gives you more control over your future, more job options, a strong sense of self-confidence, self-esteem, and self-worth that will helps you feel you have the ability to manage challenging situations and achieve your goals more easily so definitely go for the degree!
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  • Profile picture of the author tekman
    You have a tough decision and I am in the same boat. I am 34 and have 59 credits, but a few of the classes are developmental. I also work part time.

    Sociology teaches you that having a college degree places one higher up the social class ladder. If you plan to work for someone, I would get a degree. So much comes out of going to college such as self confidence, acomplishment, knowledge that relates to life and how the world works. If you got your confidence up, live life optimisiticly than you can succeed online. Look at Bill Gates and Mike Dell. They quit and are still rich.

    I started off planning to get a 4 year degree, but now plan to just get associates and get into IT field and work my way up.

    I would do both and if you blow up online than drop out. I will probably have to outsource soon when school starts up again.
    Good luck.
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  • Profile picture of the author harrietfredge
    For me, you can do both. However your performance on both might affect the one that you most prioritize. If there's a will there's a way.
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