To those of you who are earning a full-time living with IM, are considered "gurus" or are experts in IM, or who are simply active in this forum, would you be so kind as to answer the following:
- When were you a newbie in IM?
- How did you first start out?
- How did you get to where you are today?
- What do you wish you had done differently?
- What advice do you have for people who are currently IM newbies?
In short...what is your IM story?
As for myself...
I started out in the Summer of '08. I was 18 years old at the time, and a college student. I had stumbled across an ad for "The Rich Jerk" ebook, which I took a look at. I had remembered seeing that ebook a couple of years before, but I couldn't get it at the time because I didn't have a paypal account.
I decided to buy the ebook, because although I didn't know anything about IM at the time, I knew I wanted to be self-employed. It's been a life-long dream of mine. Anyway, it was a great ebook. I loved the info, even though I didn't realize most of it was considered "black hat" by the IM community. Unfortunately, most of the info was outdated, so I couldn't use it. But I did start dreaming about the possibilities...
Sometime later the same year, I created an account for the WF, using an alias. I did a lot of reading, and a lot of pointless arguing, as some of you may remember.
I got a lot of useful information. But...
I never took action.
Never. Not once. I just kept absorbing more information, telling myself I'd do it later. It took around 2 years before I finally did anything, and I had to literally force myself to take action. I'm the kind of person that doesn't like to do anything unless I'm absolutely sure I'm doing it right.
My first earned money online was from selling the $7 secrets script as an affiliate. I wrote a review, put it on a blogger blog, wrote an article, and put it on EZA. With no backlinking, I got to the 1st page (less than 10,000 competition, and EZA had more authority with Google back then).
After that, I went on vacation with my family, and when I got back about 2 weeks later, I had made 4 sales. Not a lot of money, but it was pretty exciting.
For some reason, I never tried to replicate my success. I told myself it was too much effort for too little reward. That was pretty short-sighted.
To this day, I still don't have an online business. I am taking action now, and am currently working on building an info-product. Although it's proving to be much harder than I thought it would be, I'm determined to see it through to the end.
The biggest mistake I made was this:
I didn't take consistent, focused action.
If I had taken action every single day for just 15 minutes, working on the same method/technique/business without jumping around to other ideas, I'm almost sure I would have a 6-figure income by now.
My biggest regret is that I didn't simply work on something every single day for just a short while. I can see now what a huge mistake I made by not following up on the success I had with affiliate marketing, or by not committing to a single method until I had completed it.
But that's okay. It isn't too late for me to learn from my mistakes and change what I'm doing.
It's really hard though. Even though I'm determined to finish the project I'm working on, I still have to force myself to work on it. Why? I guess it's because I still don't have the business mindset.
The most important thing I've learned about running an online business, is that it takes a paradigm shift to make it happen. You need to change your mindset and your daily habits if you are to be successful.
That's why taking consistent, focused action is so important. If you were to work on one method/project for 15/30/60 minutes every day, for a whole month...it would be hard. Especially the first week. You'd keep finding excuses to just put it off and do something else.
Don't do that. Set aside a time of the day when you will work on your business, and let nothing (except family emergencies) get in the way.
Here's a tip; on the evening before, write a list of tasks (write an article, submit article, etc.) that you want to complete the next day. Then, set an amount of time that you will spend on those tasks. After that, set a time of day that you will use to work on those tasks. You may want to use an egg timer to help you stay focused and on task. Or, you could use software such as "The Action Machine", to help you out.
Look, even if you don't make any money after the first month, it won't matter. You will have gained something far more valuable than money; you will have gained the habit of building an online business, and that is invaluable.
Okay, I'm done. It's your turn now. What's your IM story?