An honest take on making money online

make money online
Photo by Miss LuLu

“Make money online” is such a dirty phrase nowadays.  Our community has been plagued by spammy sites that promise to make you $10,000 a month by using their “proven” system.

A couple months ago, my friend bought a $100 eBook that promised to teach him to to get $10,000 of Google Adwords advertisement for free each month.  Being the skeptical person that I am, I told him I would check it out and let him know if it was legit.

The strategy the eBook taught is actually worth mentioning, so here it is in a nut shell:

A strategy for print marketing is to buy an entire newspaper page for $1000, then sell the individual section yourself to make a profit.  If there are 8 sections on the page that you sell for $300 each, then you make $2400 in revenue.  That’s $1400 of profit for you.  Pretty simple right?

The strategy is then to apply it to Google Adwords.  You have a website that’s about cars so you target automotive keywords.  You have about 10,000 monthly uniques on your site so you sell 5 adspots for $200 per month.  You then take that $1000 in a month and invest in Google Adwords to bring you more traffic.  Now that your traffic has increased, you can charge more for your website advertisement.  You then rinse and repeat the process.

The strategy the eBook teaches is decent at best.  My problem with it is that it tricks people into thinking that this is a guaranteed way of making money.  In reality, building traffic and using Adwords can cause a huge amount of capital to get started and sometimes your campaign can bust and you lose money.

We are a culture of the “quick fix.”  We’re impatient and love money, so we’re hungry for things that will make us rich quick.  Get this through your head: There is no get rich quick scheme.  You should depend on your hard work, intelligence, and ability to generate cash flow.

Here are 6 solid ways to start generating revenue through your blog:

1. Make Money Online Blog

I am a very skeptical person.  A person or blog needs to earn my respect before I will advise my readers to check out their site.  I am especially skeptical of “make money blogs” because they just produce spammy material and content that just poisons the minds of its readers.  Make Stable Money is the exact opposite of that.  They have very detailed tips about how to make money selling eBooks, how to make more money with blog sponsors, and unique posts like icons that will improve conversion rate.  I just recently discovered their blog and have been impressed ever since.

The great thing about this blog is that the author Gino is a real friendly guy who goes out of his way to help his readers.  I have already chatted via email with him and look forward to interviewing him for our video blog.  Check out his site and learn some concrete ways of making money online.

2. Use the Gary Vaynerchuk method of contacting potential sponsors

Gary Vaynerchuk is the MAN!  If you haven’t seen his video about getting sponsors for your website, you can check it out here because you have to listen to it.  Here is a quick summary:

If your blog is about slippers, google “slippers” and take a look at who is paying for Google Adwords targeting people interested in slippers.  Click on those sites and contact them.  Let them know that you’re [First Name] who has a Slipper Blog with 15,000 readers per month.  You would like them to sponsor a 125 x 125 pixel ad on your site for $100/month.  If your website doesn’t have that much traffic, you can always try affiliate programs.  If you want money, go out and get it!

3. Set yourself up for speaking gigs and events

If you have a lot of valuable content, then you can get paid to speak at events.  Just take a look at Shama and what she has done.  She spoke at BlogWorld which is like the blogging universe in the industry.

So how can you do it?

Start off small.  Do some free speaker events at your alma mater or a local unversity.  Tape your presentations and put them up on your site so that people can concretely see your presentation skills.  Make sure to create a “presentations” tab on your site and let people in your network know if there are any events that you can speak at.  Put yourself out there and eventually you’ll gain momentum and build your brand.

4. Do consulting work

You know what they say: “For those who can’t do, go consult”.  How do you get your first clients and start building momentum?  Luckily Monica has laid out 7 great ways to get consulting work.

How am I getting consulting work?  Hard work, persistence, energy, ambition… choose one.  This is what I have and what you’ll need to get your own consulting clients as well.  There is NO get rich quick scheme.  There is only hard work and hustle.

5. Sell an eBook

Jonathan Mead just wrote an eBook that is selling off the virtual shelves.  How did he do it?

He used a method very similar to Tim Ferris where he went out and interacted with the blogging community.  He became great friends with people like Leo from Zen Habits and thus elevated his status as a personal development blogger.  He reached out to the blogging community and wrote guest blog posts, built friendships, and wrote high-quality posts that managed to get on the front page of Digg.

For example, Jonathan and I are real good friends so I reviewed his eBook.  Just imagine that when you launch, 20 blogger review your eBook, each having an average readership of 15,000 readers a month.  Instantly, you get your eBook out to 300,000 eyeballs!  You know what you need to do, now go out there and do it.

6. Try the Scrouge method

Lets say you don’t have the patience to write an entire eBook, but you have some valuable concise advice that you would like to give to people on a weekly or monthly basis.  If so, you should check out The Scrouge Method by Ramit Sethi.

Ramit is able to charge $8/month for subscription to his weekly financial tip newletter becaue he has built his authority in the personal finance field.  Do you have authority in your field?  Have you been actively involved in the industry by writing blog posts, commenting on blogs, attending speaker events, and Tweeting good industry tips?  If not, you better start building your personal brand because that is the key for making your information valuable enough to sell.

I’m trying to give you some concrete ways of generating revenue. Absolutely everything online starts with your personal brand, so make sure you’re concentrating on that first and foremost.  If you have any questions about how you can make money with your blog or website, leave me a comment and I’ll make sure to give you a super thorough answer.

Published by

Jun Loayza

Jun Loayza is the Chief Growth Officer at Bunny Inc. In his startup experience, he has sold 2 technology companies and raised $1M in angel funding. Jun lives in San Francisco, CA with his wife Kim.

14 thoughts on “An honest take on making money online”

  1. I liked the Gary Vaynerchuck video, thanks for linking to it! He seems way over the top, which is perhaps the best way to be a salesperson!

  2. Great post brother! I really like it.
    Very informative…straight up serving.
    Love the style of you blog too all the photos and art, they has personality/HIP-factor to it.
    Good luck bloging, I will see you around!

    PS: other than e-book, you can sell the downloadable audio content and video. As long as you have great content…you can sell anything you want.

  3. @Liz – Yea, he is definitely a ball of energy and charisma. I’ve tried his strategy and it really does work.

    @idrawgirls – It’s very true. I have a friend who charges to subscribe to his HD video tutorials about Photoshop.

    Thanks for the compliment on my design. I’m finishing up a few tweaks here and there and it should be finished by next week.

    @Marc and Angel Hack Life – Thanks Marc! Glad to hear it and I promise to write more amazing content.

  4. FYI – I realized that I wasn’t subscribed to your site, just caught highlights on BC. Damn – you have some great content dude.

    Love the article. As someone who considers himself an online business person, these are some solid tips. The biggest resource in this whole piece is the one about Jonathon Mead. The moral is to get your ass onto as many sites and in front of as many eyeballs as you can.

    The 2nd part of this, and its going to sound like I’m some internet marketer (which I am-kinda) is to collect their e-mail address. I have always thought that the RSS readers was the end all be all, and my RSS numbers are higher than my mailing list numbers, BUT, and here is the big but, my RSS Readers don’t click on ads and hardly click through to content. My email list, well they opted in to get tips, newsletters, etc and I get great returns on affiliate offers and my own products. There is money in the list – but don’t mess with them or they will opt-out faster than Kellogs with Michael Phelps.

    More and more I see the subscription model growing and is something we are exploring with now, with free memberships and a Pro membership coming soon.

    Anyway – talk to you later and thanks for some Friday motivation.

  5. @Greg Rollett – Thanks for the compliment bro.

    You know what, I’ve never really thought about collecting peoples emails. It is something that I should definitely look into.

    Quick question: How many times a month do you send out an email newsletter? Do you prefer to have the sign up box in the body of your blog, or do you prefer to have that “pop-up” sign up box that always appears when you log onto the blog.

    Checked out your site and it really does rock

  6. @Jun – I’m not a fan of the pop up. With the Rock Stars site we have been launching a few cool guides for musicians that we fell are extremely valuable in exchange for their email address.

    I try and do monthly emails to the list, but honestly in a course I am teaching to musicians now is that it is better to leave your list alone if you do not have anything valuable to tell them. So while once a month sounds cool, send a message when you have something important to tell them. It will make them that much more enthusiastic to open it if they know you kick ass and say something great. Its just another form of relationship building.

    Hope that helps.

  7. This is quality stuff Jun. I love Gary V’s philosophies. I’ve been doing the blogging thing for awhile, and I’m starting to get he hang of the hustle. 😉

    Thanks for all the examples and tips. You’ve really taken an honest look at making money online. There aren’t any shortcut methods, it’s all about what you’re willing to put in.

  8. @Nathalie Lussier – There really aren’t any shortcuts in life. Wow, billionaire woman. Looks really impressive!

    The images that you use on your blog are really nice! I think I’m gonna spend a lot of time on your blog.

    Great to meet you in the blogosphere!

  9. Jun, this is great stuff. I started with the monetizing via adsense and have focused more on delivering great content in hopes of landing other gigs a la Shama.

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