Full-time IM'ers - When you first started, how did you make the most out of your time?

31 replies
I do this IM stuff FULL TIME, but I make hardly money from it....

That's okay, because I expected that when I first decided to quit my job back in May of 2012. I pay my mortgage and other bills from the income that I make through other means (room rentals, eBay, live music gigs, freelance gigs). My plan was to free up my time so that I could focus the majority of my energy on creating an IM business. I now have all the time in the world to do that, so I'm open to suggestions.

I'm at this EVERYDAY, almost ALL DAY....and I'm not quite sure if my time is being used wisely.

Here's what I've done so far since I have taken the plunge into IM:

- Created 6 eBooks (not short little 10 pagers either....4 of them are over 65 pages long in PDF, single-spaced, 12 point font)
- Created a nice website with a great deal of free content
- Learned how to write, format, and file convert eBooks
- Learned how to monitor my traffic
- Created several different mailing lists for several of the different things I offer as "freebies" from my site
- Learned how to use social networking sites other than just FaceBook
- Set up my profiles on many social networking sites
- Uploaded my books to Amazon and Smashwords


Now, I try to put myself on a schedule with the ultimate goal to gain traffic to my website and get people onto my mailing list....

I've decided that I'd spend Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays working on:

- Creating new eBooks
- Researching ideas for new eBooks
- promoting my current eBooks

Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Saturdays:

- Create fresh new content for my website (blog posts and/or videos)
- Promote my website via. forum posting
- Promote through social networking (add people, retweet, try and gain likes and followers)
- Learn about new social media sites that I don't already know about (such as Google plus)


Okay, so I'm on that schedule for the most part. However, I then decided that for all of this work which has the long-term goal of building a following to which I can sell my products and affiliate products to; I decided that I should focus more of my efforts on MAKING MONEY NOW....

So some additional things that I've done recently:

- Created a profile on Fiverr and posted my first gig
- Created a profile on eLance and bid on some freelance gigs
- I also decided to package all 6 of my eBooks together and create a new product which is a "course". I gave the course a new title, and a cool new cover design. I'm hiring a copyrighter to create a sales page for me for $275, and I will put this sales page on Clickbank for affiliates to promote.

So that's basically how I spend my days these days...However, I'm not really making any money from all this, and it's kinda frustrating.

What's happening (or not happening for that matter):

- I'm not getting many views on my Free guitar lesson videos on YouTube.
- I'm having trouble getting people to check out my site, and it's really demotivating when it comes time to really start forum posting and playing around on social networking site (which is really boring to me considering I don't even know if it's worth my time).
- I was having a nice little rush of sales for the one eBook that I had listed for $0.99, and so I made all of my eBooks $0.99....but now it seems as if my Kindle account is a ghost town! NO SALES FOR ABOUT A WEEK NOW!
- I'm struggling to even get 1 new "like" per day on my Facebook fan page. I've been trying to do things such as commenting, sharing, posting new pictures, and liking other peoples' comments....but to no avail.
- I'm finding myself scratching my head as to how I'd even attempt to build my traffic numbers up.

So that's that....It's getting frustrating because it seems that the more time and effort I put into all this, the LESS return I'm getting!!!

My "niche" is the "lifestyle design" for Musician's Niche.

I am a musician who decided to leave his 9 to 5 job in the pursuit of following his passion, which is to play live music as "my job", and spend the remainder of my free time focusing on earning a nice living for myself (which is where the IM comes into play).

I write both inspirational books and books explaining how I make enough money to cover my bills...this all allows me to live the life that I want to live without the need of a job.

However, I'd like to make more money and become successful through IM...and that's why I reach out to you guys! I don't think that "lack of action" is my problem here....I just think that maybe I'm missing a much larger point!

Thanks for reading this long post!

P.S. - I can post pictures to my website if requested, but I don't want to be accused of self-promoting. Therefore, I didn't post it here.
#fulltime #imers #make #started #time
  • Profile picture of the author svetod
    It's great to find another musician who is doing IM like me

    It looks like you are working really hard to make this work, but it's not paying like you want. It's a very familiar scenario, since I've there as well 4-5 years ago. Tried many products and was lurking around without success.
    I would suggest you to concentrate on one thing only and make it work.

    Any questions, just let me know and I be happy to help out.
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  • Profile picture of the author Mogly
    80/20 rule -- only work on stuff that is DIRECTLY related to making you money or conversions.

    I WASTED SO MUCH TIME the past three years.

    This past month I started conversion tracking, and finding out what sources of traffic actually turn into money for me. I was really surprised.

    I cut out 100% of the traffic sources that weren't bringing in conversions, and now I work a lot less, while still bringing in all the same profit. I'm pretty sure this will allow me to scale up even further.
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    • Profile picture of the author Max Anderson
      Originally Posted by Mogly View Post

      80/20 rule -- only work on stuff that is DIRECTLY related to making you money or conversions.
      This is the single most important lesson to learn!!!

      20% of work or effort will yield 80% of the results!

      If you want to go beyond that... Well, I never did and I am quite happy and successful
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  • Profile picture of the author Bkelly301
    Thanks for the suggestions guys...

    Except I don't even have enough "data" to do an 80/20 analysis...

    I don't have much traffic AND I'm not actually making any sales (except for the random $10/month to $20/month that I may get from a random book sale or two).

    Therefore, I'm not even sure where to focus (or cut) my efforts...
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    • Profile picture of the author CharlesL
      Originally Posted by Bkelly301 View Post

      Thanks for the suggestions guys...

      Except I don't even have enough "data" to do an 80/20 analysis...

      I don't have much traffic AND I'm not actually making any sales (except for the random $10/month to $20/month that I may get from a random book sale or two).

      Therefore, I'm not even sure where to focus (or cut) my efforts...
      If you keep on doing what you've always done, you'll keep on getting what you've always gotten. So do something else. I don't know what, exactly, but IM is huge, so dabble. As you say, you've got all the time in the world, and what you've been doing hasn't been making you any money so it's not like you'll be any worse off.
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      • Profile picture of the author Bkelly301
        Originally Posted by CharlesL View Post

        If you keep on doing what you've always done, you'll keep on getting what you've always gotten. So do something else. I don't know what, exactly, but IM is huge, so dabble. As you say, you've got all the time in the world, and what you've been doing hasn't been making you any money so it's not like you'll be any worse off.
        I guess I just don't know when it's time to:

        1.) make the decision that it's a shitty project and bail (even though I spent almost 2 years on it), or

        2.) stick with it with the belief that if I keep slowly "building@, then over time I will ultimately achieve success
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  • Profile picture of the author Randall Magwood
    Bkelly301 i wonder if you're working too hard... instead of too smart. I like your ambition and initiative... and you seem very smart. Look more into paid advertising for your products, and just focus on backend sales, email marketing, and getting traffic to your squeeze page.
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  • Profile picture of the author Bkelly301
    Thanks all...Ya I'm open to all and any direct advice as to what I should be doing differently.
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  • Profile picture of the author AchievingDreams
    The things I would focus on is:

    1.) creating content for your website. IT should solve the problems of your target market before they even buy anything from you and make sure to include a call to action on every piece of content to get them on your list.

    2.) continue to build your social media following so you can update them on the content you just created and posted on your website. (your temporary "LIST")

    3.) make sure you have a CONVERTING sales page/video for a product that actually helps musicians create the lifestyle they want. BTW: I may have a solution if you don't have one. shoot me a message.

    4.) as soon as you have a list of 1 or more people, promote your content to them.

    let me know if this helps :-)
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    • Profile picture of the author Bkelly301
      Originally Posted by AchievingDreams View Post

      The things I would focus on is:

      1.) creating content for your website. IT should solve the problems of your target market before they even buy anything from you and make sure to include a call to action on every piece of content to get them on your list.

      2.) continue to build your social media following so you can update them on the content you just created and posted on your website. (your temporary "LIST")

      3.) make sure you have a CONVERTING sales page/video for a product that actually helps musicians create the lifestyle they want. BTW: I may have a solution if you don't have one. shoot me a message.

      4.) as soon as you have a list of 1 or more people, promote your content to them.

      let me know if this helps :-)
      Yes, that does help!

      That's actually exactly what I'm doing...I'm trying to constantly add new content every day, and I do have a call to action to get people on my list at the end of every blog post and on many of the side bars.

      I currently have 68 people on my list, but they are very unresponsive because most of them came from downloading a free eBook that I had on my site for about a year now....I just started actively trying to GET SERIOUS about IM within the last couple of months....the majority of the subscribers to my list came from organic searches that occured randomly as I just let my site sit there for many months.

      I was about to outsource getting a sales page made up for $275, but I decided that I would just attempt to make one on my own instead.

      Thanks for the tips and confirmation that I seem to be on the right track!
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  • Profile picture of the author AdwordsMogul
    The secret is in researching your market. Find out what they really want, put it out there, use the feedback to figure out the next step.

    That's the easiest way I know to make money.
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  • Profile picture of the author AchievingDreams
    Your welcome. I agree with AdwordsMogul.

    You got to KNOW your market. Doing so will allow you to provide the content you need to get your subscribers active. Once they see that yoi're providing the solutions to their problems, they should start listening to you again. Dont sell them anything..let your content gravitate them toward your banners amd ads on your website.

    Heres a great way of figuring out your market:

    1.) Ask yourself WHO is so frustratrd, desperate, with credit card in hand, ready to buy right now if they see your website. The only reason they havent bought is because they havent seen your website.

    2.) Figure out WHAT they WANT.

    3.) Figure out what are the problems and frustrations they are having that holds them back from getting what they want.

    It seems the person youre looking for is you. So what are your problems and frustrations.??
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    • Profile picture of the author Bkelly301
      I see what you're saying...

      Ok, so in my current niche, how would I go about doing that?

      Should I maybe consider a new niche in which I know that there are problems that exist?

      Or should I keep my overall niche the same, and maybe just write for specific problems?

      I'm not quite sure as to how I'd go about finding solutions to problems in my current niche...but I've done SO MUCH content creation so far, I'd really hate to let it all go.
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      • Profile picture of the author AchievingDreams
        your niche sounds like musicians who want the time and money to do anything... is that right?

        Lets say a guitarist. He loves playing his guitar. But he barely has anytime for it because he has to work to pay bills etc. His passion is to become a full-time musician but still needs the income. if he could he would play for free. so he googled a way to make some extra money and got into internet marketing. he's tried it all but seems like it doesnt work.. either the information is wrong or something is wrong with his system. on top of that, theres so much technical stuff like making websites, composing autoresponsder messages, copywriting, etc. he knows that content is really important but doesn't even have the time to do some thorough research. he's frustrated because he knows this internet marketing stuff works but everything he is doing is just not working. what he wants is a system where all he would have to do is provide great content for his market and maybe invest some advertising dollars to put people in his list and funnels. he doesn't want to do the technical stuff, he just wants to do the stuff that actually makes money i.e. producing valuable content.

        so this guitarist WANTS a more time to just do money making activities.
        the thing getting in the way is all the otherstuff like making websites and learning copywriting.

        the solution would be a system that provides everything: the website, the sales funnel, the product. all that's needed is his content.

        you see.. your market is not necessarily musicians who want to create a lifestyle they desire.. well it is and it isn't.

        your market is really musicians who are already learning internet marketing to create the lifestyle they want. they're looking for tools to make internet marketing easier.

        as my mentor puts it... don't sell a hammer to screw a screw..sell a screwdriver to screw the screw.

        internet marketing is the solution for musicians who want to create their lifestyle. what they need is something to help them with their internet marketing.

        do you get it?

        if you find this information valuable, there's tons more where that came from with what im selling. message me if you're interested.
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  • Profile picture of the author AchievingDreams
    And dont throw all your content away.. tie it into whatever you're REALLY trying to do i.e. sell something that helps musicians actually DO internet marketing RIGHT.
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  • Profile picture of the author Victor Edson
    Are your offers converting when you get traffic? Maybe you need some tweaking to get things really going.

    Are you selling physical equipment too? I would.. I bet musicians love new toys just as much as everyone else, don't they?

    Have you had any success ranking for any keywords?

    What style of facebook post goes the most viral? Are you capitalizing your facebook page with an optin page to a sales funnel and promoting your products?

    Are you buying any traffic for your 'how i make money' product?

    just a few questions to mull over and get the wheels turnin. The real question is.. what IS making you money and how can you improve that?

    Also... I didn't mention anything about playing music which is your passion. Live the dream, man. Live the dream.
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  • Profile picture of the author Bkelly301
    Thanks guys! Much appreciated!

    To answer some of the questions...

    I'm not selling "how to make money online" products...I actually earn my living through following my own philosophies in which one does not need to rely on just one single source of income. Rather, they can earn multiple sources, all of which combine to a larger amount. I don't really make much from the IM stuff (yet), but I do a lot of freelance stuff and side jobs and whatnot. A lot of what I talk about is basically just my overall philosophy that one does not need to work at a crappy, uninspiring job. I don't anymore, and I still manage to pay my mortgage and all of my other bills.

    Anyway, I still haven't figured out how I really "get traffic", "convert", "get leads", etc...

    I've been trying to post on forums, social networks, YouTube, etc... I try to even do "spammy" things such as commenting on other bigger sites' pages, retweeting, commenting on forums just to comment...(but still adding value to the conversation).

    However, I can't seem to get many people to give a crap about my site...

    Obviously I'm not putting my content in the right places...or I'm just not promoting enough...I'm not sure. But I feel that I do have a good website...it's got a good theme IMO...but how to actually MARKET my content...that's where I'm struggling.

    Maybe I'll look into guest blog posting and article marketing. Does that sound like a good idea?
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    • Profile picture of the author DubDubDubDot
      Originally Posted by Bkelly301 View Post

      Anyway, I still haven't figured out how I really "get traffic", "convert", "get leads", etc...

      I've been trying to post on forums, social networks, YouTube, etc... I try to even do "spammy" things such as commenting on other bigger sites' pages, retweeting, commenting on forums just to comment...(but still adding value to the conversation).
      You are unlikely to earn a living through posting on forums, YouTube comments, blog comments and things of that nature. That stuff is labor intensive and you get next to nothing out of it.

      You have to either set the stage for your stuff go to viral (very difficult to do on a regular basis) or just buy advertising. Most people cringe at the idea of paying money for traffic. The bottom line is that if you don't have confidence in your stuff delivering a decent ROI, then you need to improve the quality of your stuff until you have confidence in it.
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  • Profile picture of the author carlamae
    Wow, you are really giving it your all. I did the same and got little to no result in the beginning. Then I realized, if something isn't getting results, dump it and move on. I'm not talking about the shiny object syndrome, just become wiser with every new adventure. You will eventually get to the point where everything you do in a day is income producing. Stick with it, you obviously have the qualities! All the best.
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  • Profile picture of the author amunt
    I know the feeling of desperately trying get traffic without much luck. I spent loads of time doing Facebook, articles, forums etc... I got sweet little payback from the hours. So I stopped bothering and just focussed on YouTube. I now make a full time income from this traffic, so be encouraged. In terms of deciding whether to throw in towel, you need to know for sure that people will pay (even if it's cents) for what you have or can create.
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  • Profile picture of the author AchievingDreams
    Shoot me ur site via inbox and ill give what I can my friend.
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  • Profile picture of the author John J M
    Building up traffic to a website takes a long time, pretty much no matter what.

    I agree with some of the other comments. You want to make sure you stay consistent and focus. But you also want to make sure you're focusing your time on things you know will bring in money.

    If you are already writing so much, I highly recommend you start looking into Kindle. It is THE way I actually started making money online and can say that it will be worth your time.
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  • Profile picture of the author Bkelly301
    Thanks guys! I will send you a pm in a bit achieving dreams...

    I do have 5 of my books on kindle...but again it's a lack of understanding about how to market my books... Because of that I don't sell many copies.
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  • Wasted time, took a break, wasted more time, chased a shiny object, lunch break, chased two more shiny objects. (but these were really sparkly ones!) wasted more time working the net... er... um... I mean surfing all over the place with zero direction. Spent 30 minutes (read 7 hours) buried in marketing forums doing "research," nappy time, back refreshed ready to chase more objects and spend money on digital duct collections.

    Wait, is it 5am already!? :/

    Sound familiar to anyone? lol

    Get focused and make small actionable moves towards your goals. Drop the crap that isn't working and consider it a learning experience. Scale and multiply what is working.
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    "Smile, if you're still breathing... it's a good day!" :)

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  • Profile picture of the author Anoopchawla
    When I got started I had no money so I used to build web 2.0 websites and monetized them using relevant affiliate offers, my main source of traffic was article marketing.
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  • Profile picture of the author jasondinner
    While there has been some great marketing advice posted in this thread, arguably the most important thing you must do and must continue to do hasn't been mentioned yet.

    You need to get CLEAR on what you want out of this business.

    ie: how much money, by what date, and what you intend to give in return for that money.

    And you need to focus on this every day by repeating it out loud to yourself in the form of an affirmation (also known as autosuggestion).

    Here's one you can use that I've been reading (well I have it memorized now) out loud every day since last december. It's formatted specifically to subconsciously move you towards taking the right actions to help you get where you want to go...providing you know where that is.

    My income/revenue in my own business has increased 20x and it got me out of a job I've been dying to get out of for a couple of years now.

    http://jdvideos.s3.amazonaws.com/Maj...te-Purpose.pdf
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  • Profile picture of the author Clint Faber
    I can help you just hit me up on skype my id is clint.faber or FB facebook.com/clintfaber
    Chat Soon

    You need the...
    Plan
    Team
    Tools

    Happy to have a conversation with you.
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  • Profile picture of the author clairelynn23
    Originally Posted by Bkelly301 View Post

    - I'm not getting many views on my Free guitar lesson videos on YouTube.
    This struck me because I like to play the guitar, and I thought I'd just tell you what I'm looking for online about the guitar. First of all, Do you teach in your videos how to play certain songs, or is it a step by step basic instruction of chords,etc.? Do you play both acoustic and electric? Do you play different types of music? How many videos do you have?

    Whenever I have searched about guitar playing info, I "search" for "how to play ...... on the guitar, or I search for the covers, or I search for the song names. I then look for the one that shows me the best technique and or the simplist way to play (so again you could make an easy version and a difficult one).

    Any rate, I hope this is helpful. I just saw the line about your guitar videos and it intrigued me. I wish you the best of luck.
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  • Profile picture of the author Bkelly301
    Clairelynn here is my channel: http://m.youtube.com/channel/UCVD9PqYtkDkLUqKuzv4A5_Q

    I try to range between beginner, intermediate, and advanced stuff. I try to mix theory and songs together, again ranging from beginner to advanced. I'm still trying to build my repertoire. I only have about 13 guitar videos now. However, I plan on sticking with this for a while .
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  • Profile picture of the author gcbmark20
    Hi,

    You need to focus on "money producing" activities in your business
    as much as possible.

    For list builders this would be:

    1. Sending out emails to their lists and making sales

    2. Creating more products to add to their sales funnels

    3. Creating continuity programs that keep on paying them month on month

    4. Marketing their business as much as they possibly through paid
    advertising

    It sounds like you've got a hell of a lot on your plate to deal with
    at the moment.

    You're more then likely TOO stretched in terms of time and how
    much you can actually put into cash producing activities.

    All the best
    Gavin
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  • Profile picture of the author Mogly
    Awesome thread -- personally I do literally the same stuff as the OP -- but I also spend a lot of time on networking.

    Connecting with people in my niche, calling, etc.

    The bigger network you have, the more influence and power you have to boost your own revenue -- in my opinion.
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