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Zero to Banking in Three Acts

Discussion in 'My Journey Discussions' started by liquitex, Feb 27, 2013.

  1. liquitex

    liquitex Newbie

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    Hello BHW. The following is an introduction and a [potentially long] messy drawing board as I get toward having this all crystallize in my head. You'll see how much I know, how much I don't know and where the gaps in my knowledge are. I'd appreciate a smack in the face when those are revealed. As for what I'm sure of, I know I can make this happen. I understand the basic concepts involved and I know where to look to find what I need.

    I've lurked around here on and off through the years picking up this and that but I never really followed through. It was never for a lack of motivation. Money, along with sex and survival, is a large enough motivator for most people to do anything - myself included. I was, and am still to an extent, lacking these two ingredients: Most importantly, I'm lacking the confidence to pull the trigger - it's very intimidating. Lesser so, because I know I can pick this up over time, is that I lack knowing what I don't know - it's also very confusing. I intend to grow some stones and learn new things here over the life of this thread. Should I succeed, aside from the money, I should hope what I will write here will help those standing right at the edge of breaking into making some money that are too timid to just go and try.

    What I have done so far.
    I'm not so arrogant as to pretend I am anything but a newbie. However, I have tried the following to get my feet wet:


    • Attempted to build a brand in a niche by blogging useful information. Tried to earn via affiliating. Couldn't keep it together and ultimately couldn't stick to consistency for long enough to build an audience. Lasted 6 months.
    • Another blog, this time a review site whereby I'd generate income from selling ads directly to those whose products I reviewed as well as using ad networks. Struggled to find the audience (beyond the creators of the products) and it died after 12 months. I might revisit this later as I did really enjoy it, even if it was the hardest to keep up. Still own the domain.
    • Image blogging on Tumblr. All I did was scrape images, post-date them to publish. Income via affiliates and ads. Failed in 2 months. Wouldn't convert. I did manage to build a small following. Maybe if I stuck with it and found a better way to earn it could have been something. As far as I know, I still have those followers. The blog is still live.
    • Smaller things I've done: build referrals for GPT sites, adsense on Youtube, built a small following on Facebook (couldn't figure out how to monetize)...

    The running theme here is that while I did have the courage to try things out, I ultimately failed because 1. I didn't have a solid idea in place and 2. I didn't stick to it long enough. I have however learned some valuable skills along the way, namely web design and development, graphic design, and some video editing. Out of potential interest, the affiliate network I went with every time was CJ.

    This time around, I'm going to pour all of my energy into planning and preparing then launch rather than go off too soon and get bored trying to find my feet.

    Here is where I am right now; my thesis, if you will: First I will create a handful of small earners to make some money I can invest into bigger ideas, then I will spin that off into selling my own products to raise my earnings, then I'll make the jump to something potentially bigger but with less creative work on my part.

    Act I: In which I learn and learn by failing.

    To begin with, I have ZERO money that isn't tied up into things like living. Thus, I'm going to need to create some small-ish earners to break in and raise some money to move further.

    Here's the plan, as it currently sits:

    I've chosen a market to work in, insanely competitive but can potentially earn if I do this right and stick with it. Within the market I'm going to choose 16 niches (and maybe microniches if I am so lucky to find some) and aggressively build blogs for each. The content will be largely unique (edited works by others) - mostly images and text with some video. 12, 24, 48 posts a day per blog.

    I'm thinking of sort of link wheeling where, let's say, for each niche I have 3 blogs each on different blogging platforms content-wise, barely unique from each, mostly in keywords, titles and posting dates for the same posts. So, Post #1 gets published on Blog #1 on Day #1, published on Blog #2 on Day #8 and so on. Staggered. Combined with this, each niche will have it's own 2.0 pages and accounts and link around and return to the blogs.

    For more links, I was thinking about Squidoo and/or Hubpages and the like to write articles about blogging about/making money with the niches I choose as well as share on forums and other community based sites (namely Reddit) where I'll contribute to the community but also push my sites.

    As far as the content goes, simply scraping images and copying (and then editing) the text. Finding video clips and images to make slideshows and videos for Youtube.

    Money.

    How I earn is still much up in the air. Likely affiliates and CPA or PPC.

    My goal is to get around $50-$300/mo to start. This should be doable if I plan and prepare.

    My timetable for this is 1 month planning and preparing and then earning over the course of a few months. Most of my costs for the future will be hosting, domains, advertising, buying followers/likes/links/comments and so on.

    Act II: In which I expand.

    By now I've built some traffic and hopefully some real subscribers so here is where I want to push things further. This section is probably the most work in progress because I could just as easily cut and run from the niches all together, drop this idea out and plug another idea in here with whatever I earned in the first act.

    Ideally, I will take all of my content from my blogs and repackage them as e-books while still keeping the blogs fresh. With an average of 28 posts per day, over the course of 70 or so days I would be in pretty good position to saturate Amazon pretty quickly. Each post would be dragged out from a few pages to 5 and I'd combine a few relevant posts into one short e-book collection. Three per ~15 page e-book at about 2 bucks profit a pop. I figure per niche I could have around 40 e-books. By by playing keywords right and having all link to each other, I could build up a pretty fantastic link wheel. Alongside this, I would (or could) set up a site and sell direct. I would be basically leveraging all of my followers/readers and trying to convert them.

    This is the heaviest as far as creativity goes but could yield good profits - potentially good enough to just leave it at that. But my goals for this are fairly humble I would think, taking a step up from the previous act and going up to $500-$1000/mo. over the course of around 3 months.

    Once all of the e-books are up, I'm done with it. They sit there and passively earn in the tail while I take my early profits and move on.

    Act III: In which I change course.

    At some point you must have asked yourself, "why all this trouble? why not just build some strong niche sites and affiliate with Amazon?" And you're right. I've looked so far into doing that that if I felt the immediate need, I could probably just start right now. The trouble is, I can't affiliate with Amazon in my state.

    So all the profits I have in hand at this stage are going to be used like so:


    • Invest and save
    • Grease the wheels to get an out of state ID, address, and bank account

    Then I'll move into making a network of niche sites and use Amazon. Biggest hurdle here? The niches. But I have some in mind already.

    To me, the prospect of Amazon is the most appealing because even by just taking a quick stroll through the forums here, you can see it can be a good earner if you're diligent. I can dig through research quickly and develop sites in hours. I could have quick turn around on launching things and move into maintenance mode while earning. The goal here is to work this way long enough to save for huge investments (offline). So there's an indefinite timetable with this one, but ideally I'd like to earn over $1,000/mo and within 4 months earn enough to both keep spinning sites out and buy some undeveloped lake front property that I've had my eyes on ($3k+).


    So that's it. The show begins. Hopefully it doesn't go over like a lead balloon.

    In the meantime, questions I ask myself while thinking all this over:

    1. It feels like there are things missing in my plans, what are they?
    2. What are the tools I need to pull this off?
    3. Intellectually it makes sense and is a sound concept, why is my gut unmoved?
     
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  2. Asif WILSON Khan

    Asif WILSON Khan Executive VIP Premium Member

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    Good 1st post, you seem to have a reasonable amount of knowledge but I get the impression you are looking for reasons to fail. Also your plan seem quite ambitious, I would suggest scaling back to begin with and don't make more than 5 posts per blog per day.
    There are plenty of threads on the forum to guide you but start taking action now.
    You can do it and remember every failure you have had in the past is a learning experience and a step towards reaching your goal.
    Good Luck.
     
  3. liquitex

    liquitex Newbie

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    You're probably right about that. The figures were inspired by a thread around here where the OP was posting on image blogs up to 50 times a day.

    Out of curiosity, aside from the amount of work that would take and red flags it might set off, are there any other reasons not to do that many?

    I wholeheartedly agree with the latter, it's the former I'm cautious about. There's such a wealth of information and possibilities that I truly am not sure where to begin with it nor what I need to be looking for yet.

    To put it another way:

    Option 1: go down to the hardware store and get everything you need to design and build a house.
    Or
    Option 2: here's a shopping list of what you'll need and need to know to build a house, how the house looks is up to you.

    That's a very rough analogy but it's kind of how I'm thinking, you know? But just the same, you might be right about me looking for failure to happen. To my mind, I'm less so looking for failure but rather trying to find the obvious holes in my plans that the gaps in my knowledge have opened up and patch those before I proceed. I'm not afraid of unexpected failures, I am afraid of setting myself up to fail.
     
  4. liquitex

    liquitex Newbie

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    [Act I, Day 0]

    Before I begin I just want to say, as I said before, I've lurked for a while so while picking up methods and inspirational stories, I've also kicked around little schemes before. Usually they'll die out when reality comes back and I get consumed with whatever life throws at me. But now I'm really excited about this. Last night I came up with several NEW ideas to work out on the side of the ones I've already talked about! I'm so much more focused than I was even a week ago...

    Anyway, here are some thoughts and updates.

    Instead of going text+images off the bat, I'm going to begin with images only. Since I'm starting with free blogs (Tumblr, blogger, etc...), I think it would be smart to age the blogs a little. The easiest way I think would be with images - especially beneficial for Tumblr - while I generate the text content. This'll get me going and begin the groundwork for hammering out the better keywords and tags, as well as begin building up the audience.

    For the most part, I have my niches sorted but I may refine them, if not before launch then certainly over time, into micro-niches.

    I hadn't thought of this before but Instagram would be a pretty powerful tool to use.

    As far as the affiliate and CPA/PPC goes, I don't have specific programs picked yet but I DO know what kind I'm looking for.

    For the Tumblr blogs, I don't think generic banner ads will work so instead I'm going to slip affiliate links into every X post anchored to the image as well as the odd "sponsored post" style for affiliates and MAYBE somesort of CPA driven post. I don't want the blogs to look spammy, but at the same time... well, you know... Not particularly lucrative, but that's not what I'm really aiming for with this anyway.

    As for the others, the same as Tumblr but with PPC ads with maybe some affiliate ads to round it out.

    Two other ideas to monetize crossed my mind as well. First, content locking. I could very easily do that but frankly I don't believe it would convert. Maybe for large packages where there's a perceived value. I have to let that percolate. The second is building an email list. Having a list could be pretty powerful for how I intend to flip the blogs audiences for trying to sell ebooks. These two ideas could make a good chunk of change but I'm not stressing over them; they're a little ways off yet.

    Regardless of the above, W130SN was right. I have to get the ball rolling. What remains of today and tomorrow will be used for the following:

    • Round out the niches
    • Find my aff/cpa/ppc programs
    • Open the accounts
    • Set the pages up
    • Organize the images I already have
    • Find sources to scrape more
    • Look into automated followers for the blogs and social networks
    • Find proxies to open my accounts with: I already have a ridiculous amount linked to me
    • Keywords & tags
    • Look into something that will make the creation of the posts less tedious - as far as I can see this will be the single most time intensive and boring part.
    • Open up Hubpages/Squidoo accounts for later
    • I'll be needing to do some niche research re: forums and open accounts there
    • And I'll be needing to make some fresh Reddit alts and start aging them

    For clarity, these are the accounts I'm going to open up for each niche:

    Blogs on at least 3 platforms, Gmail, Youtube, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram. That's for each niche. All 16.

    Also thought about opening more Facebook accounts and grabbing a bunch of quick friends (500-2k) and using them to invite to certain niches. Then if they stick around I can convert the profiles into pages and further monetize those later on. Not sure.

    Once this is carried out, I'll load the blog queues up, set up the bots I find for the socials and launch. Then the real fun begins.
     
  5. darkjolly

    darkjolly Junior Member

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    Extremely excited about this one. Good luck!