Here's What I Did Without a Plan ...

46 replies
Hi guys

Well, here I am, seven years into this great journey. When I began I genuinely had no plan at all. But I had a vision and it is getting closer to becoming reality every day.

For the past seven years, I have visited the Warrior Forum every day and if ever I found something I had not tried, I gave it a shot. The result is a healthy, passive 5 figure income. It is not yet the 6 figures I set out to achieve, but that is definitely coming.

Here's what I actually did without a proper plan:
  • Built my Main Site Using FrontPage/Expressions Web (Not Recommended)
  • Wrote Lots of Quality Articles for the Site
  • Translated them into 12 different Languages (More Pages/little extra work)
  • Joined Adsense/Put it on my Site (Instant Cash - cha-ching!)
  • Put Google Site Search on the Site (Highly Recommended)
  • Tried Some Affiliate Programs (Most were very poor)
  • Tried Adwords (Could not make it work for me)
  • Wrote a Lot of Books (I love writing!)
  • Created my Own Products for Sale (Did I say I love writing?)
  • Created my Own Banners
  • Paid People to Write for Me (Articles & Books)
  • Outsourced Graphic Creation for my Products (Not my Strong Area)
  • Outsourced Voice-Overs for My MP3 Products (Found a Great Guy!)
  • Started an Affiliate Program (Using ClickBank it was Very Easy)
  • Wrote an Affiliate Marketing Course for My Affiliates
  • Bought PLR for Many Other Books (to use as Give-aways)
  • Gave Lots of Them Away for Free (for traffic & links)
  • Gave Master Resale Rights Away to Some (for traffic & links)
  • Sold Master Resale Rights With Others (for traffic & links)
  • Made Some of them Rebrandable (as affiliate tools)
  • Submitted to DMoz Directory (Recommended)
  • Built Links using Article Marketing
  • Built Links using Forum Marketing
  • Built Links using Social Bookmarking
  • Submitted my feeds to RSS Directories
  • Submitted my site to Web Directories
  • Did a Bit of Reciprocal Linking (Not Recommended)
  • Started a Directory of Related Sites
  • Tried some Joint Ventures (Difficult to find Quality Partners)
  • Tried Newsletter Advertising
  • Did a Press Release
  • Tested Various Price Points for My Products (Recommended)
  • Tested Various Product Bundles (Recommended)
  • Tested One Time Offers (I don't like them & don't use them now)
  • Tested Up-Selling and Cross-Selling (Not doing it presently)
  • Tried a Few Blog Carnivals (Not great results)
  • Used Various Article Distribution Services (Was not Overly Impressed)
  • Started the Inspiration Newsletter (Good Move!)
  • Created our Free Courses
  • Created my Blog (Another Good Move!)
  • Created my Video Section (Just for Fun)
  • Started My Own Channel on YouTube
  • Created Our Resource Section (Good Move)
  • Started a Forum (Hard Work with Moderation and the Spammers)
  • Forged Strategic Partnerships with Related Quality Sites (Recommended)
  • Studied/Learned Copywriting (Another Good Move!)
  • Created Approx 12 Other Sites just to Try-out My Ideas
  • Created a Blog Network (Again Hard Work with Moderation)
  • Created/Launched the eWriterPro Viral Campaign (Success!)
  • Added Tell a Friend Scripts and Buttons (Recommended)
  • Added Social Sharing Buttons (Little Effort for the Advantage)
  • Submitted to Feedburner (Recommended)
  • Submitted to Technorati (Recommended)
  • Syndicated My Content to various Sites
  • Accepted Every Offer to be Interviewed
  • Accepted Every Offer to Write for Someone Else's Product
  • Did Some Guest Blogging
  • Stopped Looking for the Magic Key

Result: I am giving up the day job soon - can't wait! Imagine what I'll be able to do when I am full time. Anyway, I hope this gives a few people some ideas.

Will
#plan
  • Profile picture of the author Brian Clark
    That's all? *sarcasm*

    Thanks for your list and recommendations. Was all of this done within a single market, or did you experiment with different niches?
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    • Profile picture of the author Jill Carpenter
      What did you do on day 2?

      I think the valid point here is that while a plan is fantastic and can get you going quickly from a-b, should you have no plan it is better to do something and expand your knowledge.

      And yes, you can make money without a plan thus giving you time to create one.
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  • Profile picture of the author plhughes56
    Which of these activities gave you the biggest bang for your buck?
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  • Profile picture of the author rite
    what an inspiration! its so awesome to see your hard work is paying off I hope soon i will have a similar success story
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  • Profile picture of the author Will Edwards
    @ Brian - Yes it was all for my main site White Dove Books

    @plhughes56 - I would say these two:
    • Forged Strategic Partnerships with Related Quality Sites (Recommended)
    • Studied/Learned Copywriting (Another Good Move!)

    @Jill - I took a break (lol)

    @rite - You can do it too - and good luck

    Will
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    • Profile picture of the author Hawkzer
      Amazing Will!
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  • Profile picture of the author RobertAxelsen
    Great post, Will! Thanks a lot for sharing. Really inspiring to read all you've done and implemented.

    Like Jill touched upon, no plan can still work as long as you learn along the way. Action is better than no action, as long as you at least have a goal to strive for.

    Tried some Joint Ventures (Difficult to find Quality Partners)
    Did you do adswaps or autoresponder swaps?

    Tested One Time Offers (I don't like them & don't use them now)
    Tested Up-Selling and Cross-Selling (Not doing it presently)

    Why? Just curious

    Stopped Looking for the Magic Key
    Yeah, so vital to success, and can be such a big road block to start implementing. I know this to be very important, but I sometimes find myself tempted to return to my search for the magic key. Pays off to focus and head to the warriorforums for actionable help, not just "the-next-big-launch" and "revealed secrets".

    Result: I am giving up the day job soon - can't wait!
    Soooo glad to hear. BIG congratulations to you Will. Warms my heart to hear your hard work paid off
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    • Profile picture of the author Will Edwards
      Originally Posted by RobertAxelsen View Post

      Great post, Will! Thanks a lot for sharing. Really inspiring to read all you've done and implemented.

      Like Jill touched upon, no plan can still work as long as you learn along the way. Action is better than no action, as long as you at least have a goal to strive for.

      Tried some Joint Ventures (Difficult to find Quality Partners)
      Did you do adswaps or autoresponder swaps?

      Tested One Time Offers (I don't like them & don't use them now)
      Tested Up-Selling and Cross-Selling (Not doing it presently)

      Why? Just curious

      Stopped Looking for the Magic Key
      Yeah, so vital to success, and can be such a big road block to start implementing. I know this to be very important, but I sometimes find myself tempted to return to my search for the magic key. Pays off to focus and head to the warriorforums for actionable help, not just "the-next-big-launch" and "revealed secrets".

      Result: I am giving up the day job soon - can't wait!
      Soooo glad to hear. BIG congratulations to you Will. Warms my heart to hear your hard work paid off
      Hi Robert

      Thanks for your kind words.

      With the JVs, they were usually an ad placed in my Newsletter in return for either the same or a solo mail out to their list. One fellow Warrior was an exception. He did what we agreed and it was a very successful swap both ways. But others sent me hardly any traffic and, in return, they got thousands of visitors from me.

      Re OTOs: I just don't like them so it just doesn't sit that well with the way I want to do business. Although they do definitely work, I am just happier doing what I do.

      Re: Up-sells & Cross-sells, I have not got my product line mature enough to make proper use of them yet, but I will in the future.

      Good luck to you.

      Will
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      • Profile picture of the author RobertAxelsen
        Originally Posted by Will Edwards View Post

        Hi Robert

        Thanks for your kind words.

        [..]
        Thanks for your reply!

        Yeah, adswaps can be a challenge that way. Perhaps safe-swaps.com could help you qualify your partners better. Or you could agree on swapping a certain amount of clicks not just one email each. If they can't provide you with an average clicks per mailing, then you probably shouldn't agree to mail with them in the first place

        I can understand your point about OTO, and your integrity should not be compromised for some quick buck. I am sure that with an increased amount of products and offerings you will be able to provide great value at a price that is a must-buy as an OTO. An OTO does not have to be a higher priced product. Could simply be a "free, pay only shipping and handling" CD/DVD or printed book. Pack some free online gift with it and improve customer retention and lifetime value.
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  • Profile picture of the author amarketing
    I have a question. What do you mean by "Strategic Partnerships"? Could you elaborate or give some examples?

    Thanks a lot and congratulations on your success.
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    • Profile picture of the author Will Edwards
      Originally Posted by amarketing View Post

      I have a question. What do you mean by "Strategic Partnerships"? Could you elaborate or give some examples?

      Thanks a lot and congratulations on your success.
      Sure. Let me illustrate with an example. When I started, I contacted another site in my niche and asked the site owner where he got the menu system he used because I wanted one the same. He replied and was very encouraging about what I was doing.

      He suggested that I might use some of his free books. I did and from time to time we corresponded. Over the years, he and I have done JVs, reciprocal links, Newsletter Ad swaps etc. He is what I consider to be a strategic partner.

      Cheers,

      Will
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  • Profile picture of the author Peggy Baron
    Hi Will,

    You've sure taken a lot of action! And I'm guessing that's how you find out what you like and don't like, and what works or doesn't work for you.

    Keep it up! The beginning is soooo slow, but I bet with everything you do now, you see immediate results.

    Peggy
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    • Profile picture of the author Will Edwards
      Originally Posted by Peggy Baron View Post

      Hi Will,

      You've sure taken a lot of action! And I'm guessing that's how you find out what you like and don't like, and what works or doesn't work for you.

      Keep it up! The beginning is soooo slow, but I bet with everything you do now, you see immediate results.

      Peggy
      Thank you Peggy.

      Results are indeed more immediate now that I have my customers names & email addresses captured

      Will
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  • Profile picture of the author Mike Hill
    Holy snapping *you know what*... That is quite the laundry list. I commend you on doing all of those things and it sure is paying off.

    Even I haven't done all of that, not even close. You must really love what you do Will or really hate your job (or both) to accomplish all of those things.

    Mike Hill
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    • Profile picture of the author Will Edwards
      Originally Posted by Mike Hill View Post

      Holy snapping *you know what*... That is quite the laundry list. I commend you on doing all of those things and it sure is paying off.

      Even I haven't done all of that, not even close. You must really love what you do Will or really hate your job (or both) to accomplish all of those things.

      Mike Hill
      Hi Mike

      I actually love my job .

      About 10 years ago I made the career switch into Personal Development and it is what I really enjoy doing.

      The site was originally started as a free resource for delegates who attended my workshops. But I soon realised that it would be possible for me to achieve financial independence and that vision has fueled the effort - 7 solid years of continuous effort, but I have loved every minute.

      Will
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  • Profile picture of the author celente
    I have actually stumbled on to your site accidentally from another site I visted last year, and wondered if this guy was in the warrior forum.

    Well I have my question answered I guess. lol.

    Good job, taking action, and then taking more action is the key.

    congrats and more power to ya! Onwards and upwards as they say.
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  • Profile picture of the author LeahRae
    WOW!!!!!!!! I only wish I could motivate my clients to do a fraction of what you do!!!!!!!! So many think that if they put up a killer website -> the profits will come rolling in. Not so, you have to keep pushing and pushing.

    This is a list I am definitely gonna show to everyone that gives me "!@#$%" when I do my weekly where's your latest blog? check.

    Kudos to you!
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  • Profile picture of the author WebPen
    That's crazy! I wonder what you would have accomplished if you did have a plan!
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    • Profile picture of the author Will Edwards
      Originally Posted by AYoungMillionaire View Post

      That's crazy! I wonder what you would have accomplished if you did have a plan!
      Well, I do now.

      Will
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  • Profile picture of the author onegoodman
    Thank you for giving us a summary of what and what didn't work for you.

    I am sure these will be helpful to many. I have been working online for a year now. not yet four digits but I hope soon. wish me luck
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    • Profile picture of the author Ehanson
      That's a lot of work you've done over the years but it goes to show the amount of action that is necessary to create the level of income you've made for yourself.

      Like other posters I love that you listed what did and didn't work for you. You may have answered this already (and I apologize if you have) but if you tried website linking how did that work for you? I've tried it a bit when I was first starting out with varying success but I know Google has changed it's stance of reciprocal linking.
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  • Profile picture of the author Alfredo Carrion
    Good for you, Will! Even without a plan, you still had some ideas on how to propel yourself foward and actually executed them. Many people get stuck on that part, especially the execution.
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  • Profile picture of the author Gary Ning Lo
    Thanks for sharing this.

    I suggest creation a WSO for newbies with a description of your journey

    Cheers,

    ~Gary
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  • Profile picture of the author bumba1988
    Great list to say the least!!!!

    I loved the point by point methods along with whether its recommended or not.
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  • Profile picture of the author genuine86
    Excellent post! I wish you the best of luck on this ongoing IM journey.
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  • Profile picture of the author anauel63
    as long as one is consistent; quiting the jobby job is acheivable
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    • Profile picture of the author cwilliams6009
      This is awesome, Will. I'm using the "throw everything at the wall and see what sticks" method myself -- but you're way ahead of me.

      Thanks for this.
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  • Profile picture of the author buckeyes09
    Your post shows IM isn't easy, but definitely doable for those who try.
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    Christian

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  • Profile picture of the author marcuslim
    Thanks, this is great. There is much wisdom in just going and trying things out. Speed of implementation is a trait shared by all successful people.
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  • Profile picture of the author Usmile
    Looks like you've got everything in the pipeline and sounds like you are getting good out of it since you are willing to give you your job. Well, I hope you don't mind sharing your experience soon later
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  • Profile picture of the author Tadresources
    Wow, that's quite an impressive list. I think it's valuable for newbies to see that you can't sit and over-think everything, you gotta get out there and figure out what works with trial and error.
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  • Profile picture of the author Les Blythe
    Excellent post. Seven years and a lot of hard work looks like it will pay off.

    I personally am 1 year in made some money but looking to ramp it up this year.

    Did you give up the day job by the way? You didn't say.
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  • Profile picture of the author Noel Cunningham
    I hope a lot of newbies read this list and use it as a reality check of what IM life can be like. There are many, many different areas and things to do and it's not the Get Rich Quick scheme that some think it is...

    @ Will - did you ever get around to giving up the job in the end??
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  • Profile picture of the author RideFish
    Hi Will....
    This post was much needed since I am very new in the IM world and needless to say I am somewhat overwhelmed by the sheer volume of information on the net relating to the basics or fundamentals of the topic. If feels like I have been going around in circles these last 2 months
    because I am unsure who is credible and who is not.
    This information is much appreciated! I noticed the post originated in 2011 and the last reply was in 2012. Is the information still pertinent today?
    Thanks again,
    Scott
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  • Profile picture of the author goindeep
    That's really great Will, I remember when I wrote some content for you back about a year ago...

    Will's a really great guy that we can all learn from in my opinion.
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  • Profile picture of the author moneyt
    Which Of These payoff For You
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  • Profile picture of the author Make Money Ninja
    Fail to plan, plan to fail
    At least you are one of those "action types". Proof that action on its own can actually get you somewhere. Congratulations man, i am glad you have started earning a living at this

    I can however, unequivocally ensure you that if you planned our your actions in a systematic and strategic way, you would have quit your job a lot sooner.

    Don't encourage people not to plan. <3
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  • Profile picture of the author HeadStartSEO
    Congrats!! I look forward to the day...
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  • Profile picture of the author Stefan Shields
    That's a long list ad journey.
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  • Profile picture of the author Devin2290
    Jeez. Putting others to shame!
    Sort of contradicts the stereotypical scolding lesson that you always have to have a clear direction for success.
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  • Profile picture of the author carolyn0
    Good luck with it .
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  • Profile picture of the author JRJWrites
    Originally Posted by Will Edwards View Post

    Hi guys

    Well, here I am, seven years into this great journey. When I began I genuinely had no plan at all. But I had a vision and it is getting closer to becoming reality every day.

    For the past seven years, I have visited the Warrior Forum every day and if ever I found something I had not tried, I gave it a shot. The result is a healthy, passive 5 figure income. It is not yet the 6 figures I set out to achieve, but that is definitely coming.

    Here's what I actually did without a proper plan:
    • Built my Main Site Using FrontPage/Expressions Web (Not Recommended)
    • Wrote Lots of Quality Articles for the Site
    • Translated them into 12 different Languages (More Pages/little extra work)
    • Joined Adsense/Put it on my Site (Instant Cash - cha-ching!)
    • Put Google Site Search on the Site (Highly Recommended)
    • Tried Some Affiliate Programs (Most were very poor)
    • Tried Adwords (Could not make it work for me)
    • Wrote a Lot of Books (I love writing!)
    • Created my Own Products for Sale (Did I say I love writing?)
    • Created my Own Banners
    • Paid People to Write for Me (Articles & Books)
    • Outsourced Graphic Creation for my Products (Not my Strong Area)
    • Outsourced Voice-Overs for My MP3 Products (Found a Great Guy!)
    • Started an Affiliate Program (Using ClickBank it was Very Easy)
    • Wrote an Affiliate Marketing Course for My Affiliates
    • Bought PLR for Many Other Books (to use as Give-aways)
    • Gave Lots of Them Away for Free (for traffic & links)
    • Gave Master Resale Rights Away to Some (for traffic & links)
    • Sold Master Resale Rights With Others (for traffic & links)
    • Made Some of them Rebrandable (as affiliate tools)
    • Submitted to DMoz Directory (Recommended)
    • Built Links using Article Marketing
    • Built Links using Forum Marketing
    • Built Links using Social Bookmarking
    • Submitted my feeds to RSS Directories
    • Submitted my site to Web Directories
    • Did a Bit of Reciprocal Linking (Not Recommended)
    • Started a Directory of Related Sites
    • Tried some Joint Ventures (Difficult to find Quality Partners)
    • Tried Newsletter Advertising
    • Did a Press Release
    • Tested Various Price Points for My Products (Recommended)
    • Tested Various Product Bundles (Recommended)
    • Tested One Time Offers (I don't like them & don't use them now)
    • Tested Up-Selling and Cross-Selling (Not doing it presently)
    • Tried a Few Blog Carnivals (Not great results)
    • Used Various Article Distribution Services (Was not Overly Impressed)
    • Started the Inspiration Newsletter (Good Move!)
    • Created our Free Courses
    • Created my Blog (Another Good Move!)
    • Created my Video Section (Just for Fun)
    • Started My Own Channel on YouTube
    • Created Our Resource Section (Good Move)
    • Started a Forum (Hard Work with Moderation and the Spammers)
    • Forged Strategic Partnerships with Related Quality Sites (Recommended)
    • Studied/Learned Copywriting (Another Good Move!)
    • Created Approx 12 Other Sites just to Try-out My Ideas
    • Created a Blog Network (Again Hard Work with Moderation)
    • Created/Launched the eWriterPro Viral Campaign (Success!)
    • Added Tell a Friend Scripts and Buttons (Recommended)
    • Added Social Sharing Buttons (Little Effort for the Advantage)
    • Submitted to Feedburner (Recommended)
    • Submitted to Technorati (Recommended)
    • Syndicated My Content to various Sites
    • Accepted Every Offer to be Interviewed
    • Accepted Every Offer to Write for Someone Else's Product
    • Did Some Guest Blogging
    • Stopped Looking for the Magic Key

    Result: I am giving up the day job soon - can't wait! Imagine what I'll be able to do when I am full time. Anyway, I hope this gives a few people some ideas.

    Will
    Dude. Awesome. But I'm not going to follow your example because I would like to start earning 5 figures before 7 years. A lot of these ideas are GOLD!
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    • Profile picture of the author Darrin Bentley
      It appears this thread is quite old (I would imagine 2 years in IM is like 10 human years

      I'm curious how Will is doing today with his continued journey. Wishing him much success.


      Darrin
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  • Profile picture of the author dgmufasa
    Thanks so much for your list

    How did you ago about doing this part?
    • Tested Various Price Points for My Products (Recommended)
    • Tested Various Product Bundles (Recommended)
    Did you have some kind of rotating offer page to see which one would convert and which one would not?

    Also, what did you mean by this?
    Started the Inspiration Newsletter (Good Move!)
    Created Our Resource Section (Good Move)
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  • Profile picture of the author petelta
    Great stuff. I love your first point... My very first blog I created I hand coded in HTML/CSS. It took hours for me to add new blog posts lol.

    You don't know what's needed at first, but you quickly find the right path when you take action towards that end goal.

    Travis
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