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How I went from $0 to $40k... then back to $0.

Discussion in 'My Journey Discussions' started by Argent, Nov 12, 2014.

  1. Argent

    Argent Registered Member

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    This is not a journey but rather an experience of my IM journey "back in the day". I hope some of you will use it for educational purposes and won't make the same mistakes.

    I started IM back in late 2007. After a crappy day at the office (tech support) I came across this infomercial that promised all kinds of riches. All I had to do was make a few clicks and I'd make thousands of dollars overnight. The best part - the dude on TV was willing to teach me for free! All I had to do was pay the $40 shipping fee.

    Yes, I was naive and fed up of my 9-to-5 so I placed an order. When the package arrived I was very disappointed. As you might already know, there was nothing but fluff. On top of that I got more credit card charges for their other junks and endless phone calls with upsells to other crap and promises to make me rich if only I signed up for $xx,xxx private training... I managed to get some of the money back but I was pissed off. I was so pissed off indeed that I went online and bought some kind of "Internet Marketing" product that would teach me how to make sites, get traffic and earn money. That product was very basic but it taught me about affiliate marketing, basic SEO and some site building (aka how to set up free blogs).

    So the very first thing I did was creating a Squidoo lens (remember those?). I had no intention of making money with that page, I just wanted to warn people about that scammer from TV. I wrote the story and "exposed" the infomercial guy.


    The Big Idea

    A few weeks later I was looking through stats and I noticed that the lens was getting 200-300 unique visitors per day and the number was only rising. This is when it hit me! I've got traffic, I should sell stuff to them.

    I went back to that Internet Marketing training I purchased to learn how to make a site and went through the whole thing again just to understand the "monetization" part. Next, I signed up as an affiliate for this very program and edited my Squidoo lens with some recommendations and affiliate links. Money started rolling in. More and more money. I was a "newbie" and I was on my way to make a few $1,000 that first month.

    So after more research and learning I put up a simple review site, once again targeting this same infomercial scam and posted a few articles on Ezine. When I looked at SERPS for the infomercial product name, the rankings were as follows:


    1. My squidoo lens
    2. My 1-page site
    3. My Ezine article
    4. Another article of mine
    5. My hubspot article
    6. Official product page...

    Talk about easy rankings! I am pretty sure I was putting a dent in their business but they didn't seem to care. No e-mails, no DMCAs, nothing. I also remember that one of the phrases I used in the review was something like: "Do you really trust a company to teach you how to make millions with websites while they can't even rank for their own name? Well, I rank the top 5 spots. Click here to learn how!"...

    Anyway, it was time to step up the game and learn some PPC. I set up my first campaigns, and more money started rolling in. I started learning IM in September-October 2007 and I was making a profit of $7,000-$8,000 per month in April 2008. That's about 6 months after I first heard about internet marketing. Life was good!


    The Fall.

    I don't remember the exact trail of events but some 5-6 months later my Squidoo lens was no longer ranking. Ouch, sales started going down. Then my Adwords account got shot down. Ouch, that alone was bringing in over $4,000 per month or more. And the cherry on top? The TV infomercial stopped running completely. This means that people stopped searching for it, hence I lost all traffic to whatever online properties I still had ranking on Google's first page.

    Lesson #1: All of your eggs in 1 basket is a big NO-NO. I wish I thought of it back then.

    I should mention that partially because of this "success" I quit my job. I also bought a new car in credit so now I needed money rolling in. That was scary. I did make about $40k while it worked and I managed to save a big part of it so I knew I was safe for a while.

    However, the more important thing that I learned was: Making money online is possible.
    So I started learning yet again, creating new sites, promoting new products, testing SEO, etc. I am not here to talk about where I am now but I can say that I have never went back to a 9-5. I never got another "job" and I continued online, as you can see I still do. That's not the point though.

    Lesson #2: Take massive action.

    I applied the stuff I learned as soon as I learned them. I didn't wait for a perfect moment, perfect keyword, perfect niche... If I did, I would have never made a penny. Unfortunately I see this happen way too often. People spend hundreds if not thousands of hours learning the IM stuff and waiting for the "perfect" moment to start. Looking for a perfect strategy, perfect domain name... I am sure many of these guys know a LOT more than I do. However, the knowledge is useless if it just sits in your head, you need to apply it in real life. Go make a site, create some content, get a backlink, find a product to promote. Try some SEO stuff. TAKE FREAKING ACTION!

    This is another reason why I still visit Internet Marketing forums: To stay updated and learn new things that I could apply to my business. And actually apply them, not just read and talk about it. And yes, hard work does pay off.

    I hope some of you learned something useful here :)
    Thanks for reading.

    - Argent
     
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  2. mickyfu

    mickyfu Jr. VIP Jr. VIP Premium Member

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    I thought at first you meant 40k a month, not in a lifetime. 40k in a few month is easy, your problem is you just let it ride out, you need to adapt and push on, not sit there and watch it dwindle away.
     
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  3. meannn

    meannn Supreme Member

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    Everything changes. Dont put all eggs to same basket. And always invest.
     
  4. Argent

    Argent Registered Member

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    I understand that making $8,000 isn't a lot but I think 90%+ of "internet marketers" never even make that, unfortunately.
    And in my case I was pushing on and expending. Although since I was a beginner I never imagined that thing's could just stop working. I know that now :)
     
  5. mickyfu

    mickyfu Jr. VIP Jr. VIP Premium Member

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    Yes I did practically the same with forex, when forex was the really in thing. I made a lot of money, thought I knew it all, then things got harder and died off. My big mistake was keep pushing at forex. It was easy when people thought it was the easy way to become a multi millionaire and there was a big buzz around it. However when the tables turned and most seen it as a scam, it got harder and harder.
     
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  6. NateThehitmaker

    NateThehitmaker Regular Member

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    Never get too comfortable.Things can change fast and always have more than one source of income.
     
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  7. LordofTempest

    LordofTempest Junior Member

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    Nice story dude, would be great if you could make a journey thread talking how you are doing now.
     
  8. abhi007

    abhi007 Jr. VIP Jr. VIP

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    so what next OP are you gonna take a job and do IM as a side business or IM fulltime?
     
  9. goodguy123

    goodguy123 Newbie

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    Interesting story
     
  10. serpmover2014

    serpmover2014 Regular Member

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    Hey man at least you did $40k in under a year. On the other hand the big guys make $1,000,000 yearly from im and more so you've got a lot of ground to make up. Keep taking massive action!
     
  11. redapple5

    redapple5 Junior Member

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    Best of luck mate for your 40k
     
  12. notakingit

    notakingit Newbie

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    I love case studies and real life experiences. 40k is some real money which most IMers never get to.
     
  13. The SEO

    The SEO Jr. VIP Jr. VIP Premium Member

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    You just need to keep your self update in SEO, niches, web structures and specially changing in Google algorithm. Your squidoo lens may became a victim of Google updates.
     
  14. Argent

    Argent Registered Member

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    To be honest I've realized that although money is important, making millions is not my main goal.
    I have been traveling a lot for the past 5 years because IM allows me to. Most importantly, I don't need an alarm clock and I don't need to spend an hour commuting to a job every day. That's what's makes me happy :)
     
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  15. Lauriat

    Lauriat Power Member

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    Same happened to me. Thats what it is in IM one day you have everything next day you have nothing.
     
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  16. Spawnie

    Spawnie Power Member

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    I was doing a few hundred a months for several years... then I was doing low 5-figures for a few months with two websites in 2006 - they earned me a few k per month before and after that spike. In 2010 I banked hard on 'the' social network for three months ~80k in total 50k of that in one month. Then I took a break for some time...

    When I wanted to get back into the game I was struggling a bit but managed to make $100+ a day on adsense with FB-traffic. But I was trying too hard and my adsense acc got suspended (totally my own fault tho). That same month there was the Typhoon here in Philippines (11/2014) and we had to move - while running out of money. I then started an Adsense JV here on BHW - and got scammed by that motherfucker - so I was left with nothing and had to ask my parents to send me money so we (family of 5) can survive.
    I didn't give up - I never do - I always have ideas/find a way - and now I'm back at low 5-figures a month.

    The adsense wasn't the first time I got scammed - and even it was "only" ~$1000 (I was scammed for ~14,000 Euro before) - it was the one with the worst timing of all of them. But no matter what - I can proudly say that I was always true to myself and never scammed anyone!
     
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  17. Argent

    Argent Registered Member

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    Oh I haven't quit IM since then. Sure, that one project failed but I didn't give up on IM. The faster you fail the faster you build back :)
    I have been doing IM (and related stuff) since 2007 and I ain't looking back. I think I'd die before getting a "normal job" :)

    Wow, what a story man! And thumbs up to you for not giving up.
    I never scammed anyone either and I think that's the way to go if you want to build a long-term business. I am staying away from "quick cash" because it's usually very temporary and I am looking for stuff that lasts ;)
     
    Last edited: Nov 12, 2014
  18. DikWeed

    DikWeed Newbie

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    its okay I went from $1000 to $800, thats it.
     
  19. mistercasanova

    mistercasanova Junior Member

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    what a dikweed.
     
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  20. MrE

    MrE Executive VIP Jr. VIP Premium Member

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    EDIT: pwned by MFA peasant
     
    Last edited: Nov 12, 2014