The Truth Newbies Probably Don't Want to Hear..

40 replies
A lot of threads pop up asking how to make $X,XXX per month in IM, and there's usually a fair amount of decent advice pointing newbies in the right direction. There is however an element that's not often mentioned in these threads - and that's the amount of time it can take to build an audience and brand.

I see the phrase 'Authority Site' thrown about with reckless abandon, however I doubt the majority of new marketers truly understand the work behind such a thing (based on the 'authority site' examples posted on this forum). Im in the process of building my brand 'SurrealPSD' - so I thought I'd share the journey with you guys. Maybe it can help you out, maybe not; but at the very least it will provide some sort of context and illustrate the work involved in the authority site model.

I'll disclose outright that I am not an IM expert, nor do I make thousands of dollars each month with my online endeavours. In a way, I could be considered a 'newbie' too..


Background

Im a Professional Digital Artist, and Ive been doing it 16 years - I love this stuff with a vicious passion, I'd do it if I weren't getting paid, I do it on my 'time off'. As glamorous as this field sounds, there isn't actually a great deal of money to be made as a commercial artist.

I went to university at a later stage (when I was 25) and graduated with an extremely good grade. I now teach at university level.


SurrealPSD

For the final year project of my degree, I decided to build a tutorial site for my major project. The site teaches fine-art / photomanipulation techniques in Photoshop, and features showcasing the finest digital art on the planet.

The site was born February 2011.


Being Known..

Prior to building the site, I've been active on DeviantArt for a long time - talking with other digital artists and participating in the community. My presence on DA (the largest art community on the planet) has provided generous amounts of traffic to my site. My personal 'brand' is pretty strong on there, as Ive been a member for nearly 8 years.

Aside from DA, Twitter has been great for interacting with my audience and talking about digital art.

Through these avenues, I also talk often with the 'best on the planet' - guys and girls at the absolute top of the game, this is important. These experts know who I am, and what Im up to.


Content

Being sociable and having contacts is all well and good, but this leverage doesn't mean anything if your content isn't up to scratch. People that are passionate about their respective interests can see straight through you if your content is weak.

After the website was 'finished' for my assignment, I let it fall to the wayside - at that point I never considered it to be a business or that I would enjoy any success with it. I literally done it for the 'fun' of it, and to get marked lol.

You can check out how I promote my articles here: How I Promote Articles


Business

The site continued to be developed, as it is used as the primary learning resource for lectures I teach at university. At an early stage, I installed adsense to cover the hosting costs, but the amount made using this monetization method is pitiful at best.

At present there are no other monetization methods implemented on the site.


Something Clicked


Summer this year, I decided that the site could really turn into something big - so I started doing a lot of research into marketing, and found WF. After ingesting a ridiculous amount of info, I'd started researching monetization and the resources required to turn this information resource into a viable business.


Going Forward


Early 2013, I will be releasing a video training product - this is how the site will generate revenue. I cannot wait to scrap adsense!! A few months ago, I started 'building my list', and I'll get the full autoresponder sequence in place, once I have my product live.

Youtube will be my next 'big' traffic generator, so I look forward to hitting that with an absolute vengeance. I will be treating the site like a full time job, with a huge increase in content and audience interaction.



So, What's the Point of this Meandering Post..?

As 'Authority Sites' seem to be hot right now, I thought I'd take some of the above and condense it into some useable info:


  • Throwing a couple of articles together and carpet bombing your site with Affiliate links, does not make an 'Authority Site' - in my opinion.
  • Community presence is paramount. Do you know the 'movers and shakers' in your respective field, are you well known in your niche community?
  • Social Media platforms will enable you to get the conversation going. Trust is built on dialogue, Gary Vaynerchuck is an awesome guy to look at for inspiration in this field, highly recommended.
  • Do you know in-depth about your niche, or willing to be transparent enough to say that you are new, and that the website represents your research findings?
  • If you are jumping into a niche you are fairly interested in because it is proven to be 'profitable' - I doubt the authority model is going to be succesful for you. To become an authority, I think you need considerably more than a glancing interest.


If you are looking into building an Authority Site, be prepared to work very hard for a couple of years - with no financial reward whatsoever. I do fully understand that there are others who will generate revenue a lot faster, but most often brands take a while to gather momentum.

I think it will be at the 2.5 year mark that my site will start making some serious revenue, but Im perfectly fine with that. Im in it for the long haul, not the quick buck.

Can you build something for two and a half years and not receive payment for it? To achieve this, Im pretty sure you need to love your topic




Conzz

(..getting rich slowly since 2011!)
#hear #newbies #truth
  • Profile picture of the author Sandra Martinez
    Oh man...
    you just brought memories... I spent my first 2 years in IM building a site for breeders (it grew to have a couple of thousand pages). Never saw a cent, probably because we never actually added monetization.

    It was never good enough... finally the partnership sank.

    I learnt a load though. A very important lesson for those who never made a dime: listen up! you have to sell something to actually make money.

    It took me two years to learn that. Yeah.. don´t say it.
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    • Profile picture of the author Dmarcotte
      Originally Posted by Sandra Martinez View Post

      Oh man...
      you just brought memories... I spent my first 2 years in IM building a site for breeders (it grew to have a couple of thousand pages). Never saw a cent, probably because we never actually added monetization.

      It was never good enough... finally the partnership sank.

      I learnt a load though. A very important lesson for those who never made a dime: listen up! you have to sell something to actually make money.

      It took me two years to learn that. Yeah.. don´t say it.

      I still haven't learned this I have a site I started Jan 2011 that has made me less than $10 in adsense - I finally took the ads off the site and am now using it to market my ebooks - It remains to be seen how successful that is.
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      • Profile picture of the author Sandra Martinez
        Originally Posted by Dmarcotte View Post

        I still haven't learned this I have a site I started Jan 2011 that has made me less than $10 in adsense - I finally took the ads off the site and am now using it to market my ebooks - It remains to be seen how successful that is.
        The niche is important. Things are easier when you cal pull "something" from within that feels good. I know it sounds weird... but those sites where I put my essence worked much better than those where I was just doing what I supposed was the right thing to do.
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  • Profile picture of the author SpiderT3
    Thanks for this post. You've validated a lot of what I'm going through right now, and I have to say that I agree with everything you're saying.

    I'm in a very similar situation as you. I started a tutorial site based on a 3D modeling program, and it does take a ton of work to build a brand around your site. It is very important to be social with all the movers and shakers of your niche.

    I have made a little bit of money from the site, but blew it all away when I went to a conference so I could network with all the 3D modeling experts from around the world. So I'm actually at a loss this year, but I was able to establish relationships with advertisers, and I shook hands with many of the top experts in the field.

    This is certainly a long term game. But its rather rewarding to know you are helping people out. My next step is to do exactly what you're doing; Create a training product that I can sell.
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  • Profile picture of the author paul nicholls
    Conzz, you're right

    it does take time and most people unfortunately don't look at the bigger picture

    i've been building my blog up since december 2008 and it's been a rough ride but this year things have really started to do well

    as you say it all comes down to content and your readers can tell if you're passionate about your niche by the specificness and detail in which you write

    this is proof of passion

    i have spent hundreds of hours writing content but as long as you have a plan and you stick to it you will come out on top when all the smoke clears :-)

    Paul
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    • Profile picture of the author Broyde
      Why would I spend 2+ years building a business and not seeing a cent come in...because I like what I am doing so much. The truth is that it does not take two years to start making money on the internet.

      So are we into businesses or hobbies or both?
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      • Profile picture of the author Bill Hugall
        Originally Posted by Broyde View Post

        Why would I spend 2+ years building a business and not seeing a cent come in...because I like what I am doing so much. The truth is that it does not take two years to start making money on the internet.

        So are we into businesses or hobbies or both?
        My business has become my hobby. I spent years failing and chasing the button. I have since come to love this business with a passion. The depth of it all just blows my mind. I make my money, but I also help friends that can afford my services out. I do it for free to help and because I welcome the challenge.
        Most of the time I get a good chunk of change at the end. I would still have done it resentment free because I love it. So I would say in order to succeed it needs to be both. As the big man Tony always says. Your vocation should be your vacation.
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  • Profile picture of the author TheMadHatter
    Noobs are doomed imo as far as IM goes. I just hope that if you are a noob you had to start poor. It is very easy to be taken and misled starting out. Lots of people post videos about how easy everything is, do x y and z and make this amount of money when in reality no one is really posting that kind of stuff. You could see one video, read some thing or whatever then go off and do it and lose money like that. There should be like an everyday 8 hour a day 3 month study requirement before wasting any sort of money in IM. Thats the truth. It also helps if you have used the internet everyday of your life practically and are above average tech wise. If not I do not see it happening quite so easily unless you are one of the lucky few. Emphasis on luck. Another emphasis on effort. Either way though it is still worth learning rich or poor. There is a lot of money to be made. Advertising revenues on the internet are 132 billion dollars a year. Thats plenty for everyone to cash in on.

    Also wanted to note, much of the info I first received. Which is a lot of the general info out there before you really decode it, understand it, and do some of your own tests will be very misleading at first. Just be careful with your money and you will be good however.
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    • Profile picture of the author Bill Hugall
      Originally Posted by TheMadHatter View Post

      Noobs are doomed imo as far as IM goes. I just hope that if you are a noob you had to start poor. It is very easy to be taken and misled starting out..
      Sick of comments like this. If I go back to all the products out there 5 years ago when I started.... Maybe, but a lot of my failures fall squarely on my shoulders. I was buying like 2 or 3 a week. Making money in the IM niche or any other is simple. There are some basics and when you get them down you make money.
      Your comment is like someone who buys one solo gets 50 opt-ins and can't believe that they don't all buy. Numbers. It is all about the numbers. Wait!!! You mean I have to buy a ton of solos build a list, and then learn how to make my emails persuasive so people click, and I need to make sure the copy of the offer I send them to converts well. The basics. They are posted everywhere in this forum. Follow them and succeed.
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  • Profile picture of the author vanse
    Being sociable and having contacts is all well and good, but this leverage doesn't mean anything if your content isn't up to scratch. People that are passionate about their respective interests can see straight through you if your content is weak.
    This is the main thing - quality content that is interesting and relevant - and also with correct spelling and grammar - will not only attract viewers, but they will also return for more.
    And this is the key to being successful with your site.

    Once you have monetized your site, these regular returning viewers will begin to generate income for you.
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    • Profile picture of the author LearnNOTmoney

      Great Read

      As a newbie i am indeed worried about the future. I like my niche, but a few things that would ultimately hurt me is the lack of networking and the inability to write good articles myslef. I have outsoruced a few content as a newbie from different writers, and i have to be honest, it is apparent they don't have the same feel for my niche and passion.

      It's even more difficult for me since English is not even my first not even my second language.

      I wonder if i could ever create an authority site since that's what i really want..
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    • Profile picture of the author VinnyBock
      Originally Posted by vanse View Post

      This is the main thing - quality content that is interesting and relevant - and also with correct spelling and grammar - will not only attract viewers, but they will also return for more.
      And this is the key to being successful with your site.

      Once you have monetized your site, these regular returning viewers will begin to generate income for you.
      Great point Vance...

      Something simple like "spelling and grammar" is too often over looked yet absolutely critical... I won't read a blog or stay on a site for more than a second if every other word is misspelled while stuck into a run-on sentence...
      :rolleyes:
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  • Profile picture of the author RedShifted
    Dude,

    Youtube has been nothing but a blessing for me. I honestly can't explain how much I love this site. I use to see all these threads popping up about it being "easy" to rank videos on youtube for small businesses in order to generate leads.

    For months and months I always liked the idea but never did anything. One day I reached my breaking point and just made 1 awesome video. I uploaded it, optimized it, backlinked it, then used fiver to blast it for 2 months with views/likes/subscribers (for only $5).

    That was literally all I did.

    2 weeks later I get my first call. I give the lead to my brother, who sells in this niche, he sells the job for $8,000. He gives me $800 for that 1 lead. Thats a $795 return for a $5 investment and about 3 hours of work on the video.

    At this point I nearly crap my pants. I immediately think "omg.. this is just one video, and its only been 2 weeks". So I make a few more videos. More calls start coming in, more money, and I really can't explain what youtube has done for my life. Craigslist is also great when used properly (you can advertise your youtube videos with thumbnails on it), but once you have a good rank on youtube, your video tends to stay in position 1 for a while. I have videos I did 4 months ago that I haven't done anything else to, and they're still in position 1. On Craigslist, you have to post multiple times a day from multiple accounts.

    I was also kind of lucky. In the respect that I had certain resources I never really paid attention to. And I merely decided to take advantage of them one day. Now its lead to me making 4 figures a month just on youtube. Not to mention, I am only targeting about 20% of all the potential keywords I can rank for.

    The best part, I got a phone call from NBC through youtube and our business is going on tv. Filming starts for us January 9th. I can't honestly tell you if I got lucky, or if I just so happen to be good at what I'm doing, but pretty soon I will make a small fortune just off youtube all by itself.

    I'm not using any adsense, no affiliate offers, none of what most people do. So this last month I've been going insane ranking more videos, and now I'm starting to branch out into other niches. After that, I have an idea for a great product I want to sell. All I know, I am going to milk youtube for every penny I possibly can. I'm not even targeting competitive niches. Its quite the opposite. Very small niches with a high return, that most people tend to ignore.

    The site is amazing when used properly, and I honestly wish you the best in 2013.

    -Red
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    • Profile picture of the author JeremiahSay
      That's really inspiring. It's good to see fellow warriors making full-time income working from home

      Happy 2013! Have a blessed and wonderful year ahead.


      Originally Posted by RedShifted View Post

      Dude,

      Youtube has been nothing but a blessing for me. I honestly can't explain how much I love this site. I use to see all these threads popping up about it being "easy" to rank videos on youtube for small businesses in order to generate leads.

      For months and months I always liked the idea but never did anything. One day I reached my breaking point and just made 1 awesome video. I uploaded it, optimized it, backlinked it, then used fiver to blast it for 2 months with views/likes/subscribers (for only $5).

      That was literally all I did.

      2 weeks later I get my first call. I give the lead to my brother, who sells in this niche, he sells the job for $8,000. He gives me $800 for that 1 lead. Thats a $795 return for a $5 investment and about 3 hours of work on the video.

      At this point I nearly crap my pants. I immediately think "omg.. this is just one video, and its only been 2 weeks". So I make a few more videos. More calls start coming in, more money, and I really can't explain what youtube has done for my life. Craigslist is also great when used properly (you can advertise your youtube videos with thumbnails on it), but once you have a good rank on youtube, your video tends to stay in position 1 for a while. I have videos I did 4 months ago that I haven't done anything else to, and they're still in position 1. On Craigslist, you have to post multiple times a day from multiple accounts.

      I was also kind of lucky. In the respect that I had certain resources I never really paid attention to. And I merely decided to take advantage of them one day. Now its lead to me making 4 figures a month just on youtube. Not to mention, I am only targeting about 20% of all the potential keywords I can rank for.

      The best part, I got a phone call from NBC through youtube and our business is going on tv. Filming starts for us January 9th. I can't honestly tell you if I got lucky, or if I just so happen to be good at what I'm doing, but pretty soon I will make a small fortune just off youtube all by itself.

      I'm not using any adsense, no affiliate offers, none of what most people do. So this last month I've been going insane ranking more videos, and now I'm starting to branch out into other niches. After that, I have an idea for a great product I want to sell. All I know, I am going to milk youtube for every penny I possibly can. I'm not even targeting competitive niches. Its quite the opposite. Very small niches with a high return, that most people tend to ignore.

      The site is amazing when used properly, and I honestly wish you the best in 2013.

      -Red
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    • Profile picture of the author zimbizee
      Originally Posted by RedShifted View Post

      Dude,

      2 weeks later I get my first call. I give the lead to my brother, who sells in this niche, he sells the job for $8,000. He gives me $800 for that 1 lead. Thats a $795 return for a $5 investment and about 3 hours of work on the video.

      At this point I nearly crap my pants. I immediately think "omg.. this is just one video, and its only been 2 weeks". So I make a few more videos. More calls start coming in, more money, and I really can't explain what youtube has done for my life. Craigslist is also great when used properly (you can advertise your youtube videos with thumbnails on it), but once you have a good rank on youtube, your video tends to stay in position 1 for a while. I have videos I did 4 months ago that I haven't done anything else to, and they're still in position 1. On Craigslist, you have to post multiple times a day from multiple accounts.

      -Red
      Hi , what type of videos are you creating? - lead generation? etc
      Would you be prepared to share one or let me know more about how you are tackling this via PM. I'm really trying to break into video this year and any tips would be greatly appreciated

      Thanks
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  • In my experience, the money came rolling in even before I started. How?

    I focused on providing services in an industry that nobody I knew (who had the resources to blow me out of the water) wanted to focus on. I had vast knowledge coupled with first hand skills and experience in relevant specialized subject areas. There was a rising demand from relevant industries. They needed top quality services at more reasonable rates. I was in a position to not just offer my own services under a trial contract, but to also set up a company, source out, test, hire, train, supervise, manage and motivate a group of employees under my wing. So:

    I cold contacted a prominent Canadian system security software corporation with a newly released product, which meant they had deep pockets for marketing campaigns. I pitched my offer, negotiated and signed up a small trial contract. They paid me 50% upfront...

    They got the results they wanted and asked me to hire employees to accommodate a much larger project under a much longer contract. They paid me 50% upfront...

    The rest is history, as detailed in my sig links below. Oh and yes, I was totally blind when I did the things above,and I still am, going on my tenth year now, so that could've helped? Nah! Well, at least for the recognition and awards I got from the United Nations among other local and international government, non-government and private institutions, as well as for the network I established and became a part of, the YPO and the WPO included...

    And, with any labor contracting business that targets a global market, things go bad with a downturn in the economy, especially with a creative labor contracting business targeting international markets in the middle of a global crisis. This is when and where it is important for a person running a creative labor contracting business to formulate and implement innovative solutions...
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    I'm a Digital Marketing Consultant, Startup Entrepreneur, Content Writer & AI / ML / DL Developer — BBC Business News Interview & VIsION, Wearable AI Device for the Blind

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  • Profile picture of the author Monkeh
    These comments are killing me. Newbs are doomed as far as IMing goes? We were all "Newbs". Regardless of how long you've sat in front of a computer or not, the first cent you made was dependent on point A. Point A being your first step.
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  • Profile picture of the author Adie
    Perfect post. Making money online can't be done overnight. You have to do it with passion, motivation, and determination. I started my personal blog last 2002 and let it online for a year without any single ad. The second year started everything and until now it is giving me enough to pay my bills.
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    Moderator's Note: You're only allowed to put your own products or sites in your signature.

    Signature edited.
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  • Profile picture of the author Scrambler
    You hit the nail square on the head regarding authority sites. Creating an authority site with good content is no easy task, and yes it's an actual job. Lots of folks are under the impression that you can out source 20 articles on fiver, slap them up and call it an authority site.

    If you want excellent quality content and articles be prepared to pay good money if you outsource. Or roll up your sleeves; research; and data dump what you know about the niche. Then tweak, tweak, tweak your copy.

    Don't get me wrong, I know there are lots of people making plenty money in IM and doing it rapidly without going the authority site route. However if you do go the authority site route be ready to spend some money or put in the time.
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  • Profile picture of the author DonnyBoy
    Well Scrambler I would agree with you here... Investing Time and Money are the only things to get results... One Invest money not time yet he says that the stuff he got is fake and the seller is a scammer... This is not good... One should need to Invest his time as well because there is no software in the market right now which provide results without investing any time... So first learn the thing you Invested money on so that you get good results...
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  • Profile picture of the author SurrealPSD
    Originally Posted by Sandra Martinez View Post


    I learnt a load though. A very important lesson for those who never made a dime: listen up! you have to sell something to actually make money.

    It took me two years to learn that. Yeah.. don´t say it.
    That's the realisation Ive come to as well - and yep, it took me 2 years also

    Originally Posted by SpiderT3 View Post

    This is certainly a long term game. But its rather rewarding to know you are helping people out. My next step is to do exactly what you're doing; Create a training product that I can sell.
    Awesome to hear from someone in a similar niche - I'd be very interested to hear how you get on, sent a PM

    Originally Posted by paul nicholls View Post


    i have spent hundreds of hours writing content but as long as you have a plan and you stick to it you will come out on top when all the smoke clears :-)

    Paul
    It most certainly is a long(er) game with this model, but Im sincerely hoping slow and steady wins the race in this instance!!

    Originally Posted by Broyde View Post

    Why would I spend 2+ years building a business and not seeing a cent come in...because I like what I am doing so much. The truth is that it does not take two years to start making money on the internet.

    So are we into businesses or hobbies or both?
    That's a fair point, but the post is primarily geared toward those jumping into niches in which they have no interest whatsoever

    Originally Posted by TheMadHatter View Post

    Just be careful with your money and you will be good however.
    There are plenty of free methods to learn and drive traffic out there - but you pay with 'elbow-grease' instead of money. This is how Im doing it at the moment

    Originally Posted by vanse View Post

    This is the main thing - quality content that is interesting and relevant - and also with correct spelling and grammar - will not only attract viewers, but they will also return for more.
    And this is the key to being successful with your site.

    Once you have monetized your site, these regular returning viewers will begin to generate income for you.
    ^ Totally agree, this is the foundation for all my online endeavours

    Originally Posted by LearnNOTmoney View Post

    Great Read

    As a newbie i am indeed worried about the future. I like my niche, but a few things that would ultimately hurt me is the lack of networking and the inability to write good articles myslef. I have outsoruced a few content as a newbie from different writers, and i have to be honest, it is apparent they don't have the same feel for my niche and passion.

    It's even more difficult for me since English is not even my first not even my second language.

    I wonder if i could ever create an authority site since that's what i really want..
    Judging by this post, I'd argue you have a very workable grasp of the english language. Im certain a solid workrate will aide you in overcoming these hurdles

    Originally Posted by RedShifted View Post

    Dude,

    Youtube has been nothing but a blessing for me. I honestly can't explain how much I love this site.
    Red, your post on Youtube is epic - that's the kind of encouragement that gets me really excited about the platform. The only problem for me at present is living on an extremely busy road, with people screaming and large vehicles going past.

    After midnight it gets quieter, so I can record then - I bought a solid podcast mic last month, as it's usually the audio that lets Youtube videos down.

    All the best to you in 2013 too

    Originally Posted by Marx Vergel Melencio View Post

    In my experience, the money came rolling in even before I started. How?

    I focused on providing services in an industry that nobody I knew (who had the resources to blow me out of the water) wanted to focus on.
    Marx, I saw your story on a Youtube video in another thread, very inspirational. I see you've taken a slightly different approach to IM (like Red), and that's awesome. Hope 2013 is even better for you

    Originally Posted by Monkeh View Post

    These comments are killing me. Newbs are doomed as far as IMing goes? We were all "Newbs". Regardless of how long you've sat in front of a computer or not, the first cent you made was dependent on point A. Point A being your first step.
    Im with you on that - in terms of IM, Im still a 'noob as well, but Im not disheartened.. If those guys can do it, I can do it too!

    Originally Posted by Adie View Post

    Perfect post. Making money online can't be done overnight. You have to do it with passion, motivation, and determination. I started my personal blog last 2002 and let it online for a year without any single ad. The second year started everything and until now it is giving me enough to pay my bills.
    That's awesome

    Originally Posted by Scrambler View Post

    Don't get me wrong, I know there are lots of people making plenty money in IM and doing it rapidly without going the authority site route. However if you do go the authority site route be ready to spend some money or put in the time.
    Most def
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  • Profile picture of the author 123andyt
    Really good post .. as one who is trying to build up an authority site of my own I can understand the difficulties .... what I have just grasped is that you need to do as much (more?) work offsite as you do onsite and that the success of your site is all about relationships...

    So my 2013 New Years resolution (though lord knows I could do with losing some weight) is "build better relationships" in all aspects of my life!
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  • Profile picture of the author mrelk159
    Great post to help out all of the newbies out there. Those are all great tips and I definitely learned some of them myself.
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  • Profile picture of the author Backlinko
    Originally Posted by SurrealPSD View Post


    If you are looking into building an Authority Site, be prepared to work very hard for a couple of years - with no financial reward whatsoever.
    I agree with everything you said but this.

    As someone that has done it several times you can build an authority site in a few months.

    Yes it takes hard work, but you can go from $0 to 5-figures monthly if you pick a niche, write killer content and invest in marketing.
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    • Profile picture of the author Sandra Martinez
      Originally Posted by Backlinko View Post

      I agree with everything you said but this.

      As someone that has done it several times you can build an authority site in a few months.

      Yes it takes hard work, but you can go from $0 to 5-figures monthly if you pick a niche, write killer content and invest in marketing.
      I just marked the key phrase here... things are easier after the ground was broken, but how about the first time?

      And there is also the little detail of what each person calls authority site. It is not defined only by the amount of pages, it has to do with the unique proposition. In some cases, it is a life long commitment.
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      • Profile picture of the author minimalseo
        Originally Posted by Sandra Martinez View Post

        I just marked the key phrase here... things are easier after the ground was broken, but how about the first time?
        I cannot agree more. We often thrown around the advice "Rinse & Repeat" on IM success strategies..but before that comes working it out the first time - the barrier across which unfortunately few cross over as it can appear very daunting until the moment its breached..
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        • Profile picture of the author Steve B
          Conzz,

          Have you considered selling your digital art along with your tutorials? I know some artists that are charging pretty hefty prices for their original works and prints and are doing quite well online. It would be a natural extension of your tutorials site. A platform like ImageFolio would give you the foundation for displaying and monetizing your work. Just a thought . . .

          Steve
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  • Profile picture of the author Sushiman1111
    I don't necessarily agree that you have to network and have a reputation in your niche to start out, but I definitely agree that you have to know what you're doing in order to succeed. Weak content will be seen through, if not immediately then very shortly thereafter. Why? Because your solution to someone else's problem simply won't work. And you will be deluged with refund requests and/or develop a terrible reputation. One will kill your current efforts, and the other will kill your future.
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  • Profile picture of the author samjaynz
    Definitely true - building an authority site takes a heck of a lot of time, and requires some seriously top notch content. You can't just put together a bunch of crap content and hope it will do well; you need to spend hours slaving away in front of your computer, adding fresh content, networking with other leaders in your niche, meeting customer requests etc.

    I've seen training courses where people say "build an authority site" by researching 30 or so long-tail keywords, and then outsourcing the content for $5 an article. That is not an authority site - it is a recipe for failure and disappointment.

    Don't try and build an authority site in a niche you don't know!
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  • Profile picture of the author DubDubDubDot
    In a nutshell, how do you plan for your paid tutorials to compete with the massive number of free tutorial blogs and YouTube videos?
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    • Profile picture of the author SurrealPSD
      Originally Posted by DubDubDubDot View Post

      In a nutshell, how do you plan for your paid tutorials to compete with the massive number of free tutorial blogs and YouTube videos?

      An awesome question, Im glad you've asked it.

      My system is laser-focused on digital art techniques only - so the premium 'training package' Im releasing will cover a huge swathe of topics other tutorial videos don't ever touch -

      This includes non-software issues like mood boards, scale / composition, depth of field, visual research etc (..the actual meat and bones of art that others don't cover). The unique selling proposition is that this approach has been used succesfully at university with hundreds of graduates - whereas the majority of other tuts online just cover general basics or 'tricks / walkthroughs.

      I am selling a system, not tutorials
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  • Profile picture of the author KevinDahlberg
    Your post is the very reason why I didn't even think of focusing on making an authority site.

    There are a few blogs online that I love to visit. I just know that it will take me just as long as the creators did to make my own awesome blog. What that meant for me was taking a different path.

    Good luck on your authority site. Hopefully you see results in your monetization sooner rather than later
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  • Profile picture of the author jlcs
    For my start in internet business, I have prepared a fund to like it "burn" in this business. I found that a lot of newbies start internet business with thought of buying jackpot....this is a very wrong mindset.
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    Earn $1,037.69 in daily is NOT a big amount.
    I can show you how to do this.

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  • Profile picture of the author Chris Donne
    Building an authority site can take not long at all, gaining authority is what takes the time, I know when I started I spent all my time learning and perfecting everything I did, but made no money, So newbies, what ever you decide to sell on online ,spent the majority of your time marketing it, and do the authority stuff as the $$$$$$$ start to come in. When I wised up and took that approach, it all changed. Its an Internet Business you want, not a hobby, so get marketing
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  • Profile picture of the author SurrealPSD
    Originally Posted by Steve B View Post

    Conzz,

    Have you considered selling your digital art along with your tutorials?

    Steve
    Hey Steve, thanks for the link. I actually considered selling prints as I have access to an industry-quality large format printer. I definitely want to leverage that in some way when my traffic gets big(ger)!

    Originally Posted by KevinDahlberg View Post


    There are a few blogs online that I love to visit. I just know that it will take me just as long as the creators did to make my own awesome blog. What that meant for me was taking a different path.

    Good luck on your authority site. Hopefully you see results in your monetization sooner rather than later
    Thanks Kevin. When I was involved in powerlifting / strength training (as a hobby and means to keep fit), there were a couple of fitness guys I used to follow online. I think I learnt quite a bit from how they do things even though it's a different niche.

    It is a longer route, but an interesting challenge nonetheless. Good luck with your endeavors 2013!

    Originally Posted by Chris Donne View Post

    Building an authority site can take not long at all, gaining authority is what takes the time, I know when I started I spent all my time learning and perfecting everything I did, but made no money, So newbies, what ever you decide to sell on online ,spent the majority of your time marketing it, and do the authority stuff as the $$$$$$$ start to come in. When I wised up and took that approach, it all changed. Its an Internet Business you want, not a hobby, so get marketing
    This post struck a chord with me, and yeah - you're right!! I gotta get my product online sooner and get the marketing moving with more urgency. Appreciate the comment
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  • Profile picture of the author voidd
    Thanks for the post. I started building a blog not knowing what i was getting into, but it is a lot of work. and you have to put time into it to get anything back. Good luck with the site!
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  • Profile picture of the author SurrealPSD
    Found this awesome article on richjack.com that pretty much validates the discussion on this thread:

    The art of building and selling 6 figure websites

    Hope you guys enjoy it as much as I did
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  • Profile picture of the author BeeJay
    Really insightful post, and it's always refreshing to see long-sightedness in this business.

    Good idea on starting your list, it's an instant audience for your product.

    YouTube is a great traffic source, particularly for 'instructional' video's like the ones you could make.
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