How Pros Make Money Online

Income Diary

11 Things That Made Me Money In The Last 12 Months

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Last year was a record breaking year for me. I remember back in the last week of January 2010 I was in a master mind meeting and was asked my target earnings for the next year. I told them I wanted to be a 7 figure internet marketer, which was a big jump from just achieving my goal of 6 figures. Although I haven’t achieved this goal, I do think I will of done something more impressive in the coming months, which at this time I can’t reveal.

I have tried lot’s of different methods to make more money from my business, I have launched my own product which is now used by tens of thousands of people, sold consulting (briefly) and offered bonuses on product launches. Here are the 11 things that made me money last year:

What Makes My Business Money

1. Interview People With Products

One of the very first interviews of the year was with Adam Horwitz, he had just applied to be one of Yanik Silver’s scholarship winners and before I spoke to him I had seen his sites. Admittedly I thought he was a scammer and was surprised when he applied, after a few nights of talking, I interviewed him for IncomeDiary and since then have sold thousands of dollars worth of his product on autopilot. This worked well because the advise in the interview inspired everyone and wanted them to proceed with what he was teaching, the only way to get a jump on the competition was to buy his product.

2. Launched My Own Product

About a year ago I sat down and tried to calculate if it was worth doing a launch or not. At the time I thought it was a lot of work to give half to affiliates then half of whats left to the tax man. It wasn’t till June when I was talking with my web developers and looking at the results of my lightbox popup that I realized we had a great opportunity to sell this to a lot of people. Spreading my risk, I offered a 50% share to my web development team who would put in the hours and I would put in the knowledge of online marketing. In 3 months we did two launches earning hundreds of thousands of dollars. The best thing about launching the product was the feeling of putting something out there that people respected and loved, looking back, it didn’t matter if I didn’t make any money from this, just have all these marketers I look up to, now come to me for business, that was enough.

Tip for blogger

3. Launched My Own Service

Early in the year I was doing a service called “Done For You Blogging”, everyone coming to my blog wanted a blog just like me so I once again went into business with a web developer, they would do the blogs and I would do the marketing. This was highly profitable but I found without the right systems in place, it was not worth the money it made. We recently put it back online, working with a new developer, we greatly improved the service to provide customers with a best possible blog for the lowest price possible. A service with a set system is attractive to me because it doesn’t require to much work as long as you have the right team in place.

4. Sold Consulting To Readers

Selling my time for money is something I will most likely never to do again. Although being paid any where between £150 and £200 a hour is “nice”, please don’t judge me but I felt some clients made me dumber, along with my health not being great at times, I felt it wasn’t worth my time.

5. Tried Webinars

I tried a couple of Webinars as I had heard from several good friends that they were very profitable for them. First one made me nothing and only had 40 people turn up, this was mainly down to not promoting it hard enough, you need to email hard to your list and promote it everywhere. I also probably didn’t promote the right product on the webinar. The next webinar was more successful, unfortunately at the time I was having an operation and wasn’t able to be on it, however Lewis Howes had my back and ran the whole thing, it was a lot more successful but for the amount of promotion to my email list, it wasn’t more profitable then doing a directly email promotion, at least that’s what I found. Perhaps if I gave it more time and found more targeted products it would of gone better.

I don’t plan on using this technique again for promoting other peoples products, although do think it will be good for promoting my own products.

6. Bonus Pages

I had never promoted a high price product to my list before when Gideon Shalwick asked me to promote his $1000 video blogging launch. I like Gideon and what he represents so wanted to promote it and help him out. I decided to put together a bonus page which was a short video of me going over the product and what you get if you buy it through my affiliate link. I offered a few free bonuses and it did convert fairly well, this is something I will be trying and testing a lot more in 2011.

7. Reviewed Products

Just over a year ago I was speaking to some marketing friends and wanted to release a review blog on IncomeDiary, Ryan Deiss told me it won’t work because you can’t be always promoting great products and if you do decide to say something bad about one, then they will no longer want to work with you. He was right and I decided against it. I use a lot of different products for my internet businesses and when promoting their site direct in an email, it never converted that well because it didn’t look right. I decided to review some of the products myself, showing them how I use it and why it’s great. This increased conversions greatly and I have seen upwards of $6 a click from a review.

8. Perfected My Guide Posts

I love writing information to show people how to do things, the best thing is when it includes the reader having to buy something. This way, they see the benefits and how to do it and know the importance of it, they naturally want to go and do the same. Unfortunately they have to go buy something, perhaps some software or hire someone, when they do, they purchase through my affiliate link which earns me money.

9. Got Rid Of An Affiliate Promotion <<=== READ THIS ONE

This was great how this worked out. I had made over $7000 promoting a Twitter product on my blog, I had begun promoting it because they were friends of my Dads and had done quite a lot of work for our businesses. They were hired to do some work for me, a long story short it was some software, instead of delivering on their promise they went out and tried to sell it to my competition (all of them) and after getting turned down by everyone (people like me) they decided to launch it as their own product. I didn’t need their money that bad so decided to cancel their promotion and replace it with a different Twitter product which perhaps was better, this doubled my conversions and is earning me twice as much. What can you learn from this? Test lots of different affiliate products and don’t betray your friends.

10. Sold Advertising

If you have read much of my previous posts you would know I have a love/hate relationship with advertising. I think I have found a good model now, small amount of advertisers, privately sold, giving them results so they stay for ever. This is a work in progress and hope to have things set up by the end of March.

11. Email Marketing

I use this in two different ways, the first one is my eCourse, which has been running for over 2 years now and still remains one of my most profitable parts of my business. I provide value and monetize it, simple.

The second part is emailing affiliate promotions to my list. This has been really hit and miss, some promotions making me A LOT of money and some being really bad. I have decided to give this technique a rest for a few months, perhaps I will come back to it, but personally I believe writing more content which is well monetized and emailing my list a link to that will convert better over time. It also makes my readers love me a little more 😉

What Will Make Me The Most Money In 2011?

Something most internet marketers don’t even consider is creating a business which you can sell one day. Most just focus on today, making as much as you can to pay for your lifestyle. I have always had it in the back of my head that I’m building a business which I can sell.

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  1. Chris McCann says:

    Hey Michael great post. Your advice and journey is such an inspiration to a 19 year old entrepreneur like myself. Keep the great content rollin’ man!

  2. David Walker says:

    Hi Michael,

    This is a great round-up up of things that do and don’t make you money online and should be helpful for those looking to slice through the clutter.

    You are in a great position with this blog. If you wanted to offer bonuses for major product launches you should rank in Google quite well due to the authority you have here.


  3. Off topic:
    I must say, Michael.. is by far the best make money online blog i have ever seen, and i’ve seen a lot. To me, all the other bloggers blogging about making money, it’s just bullocks, what they’re saying. You inspire me so much, and this post is one of the post posts, i’ve seen from you in a while.
    Just wanted to give you a thumbs up!

    Thanks, and keep up the good work.

  4. Wow. Thanks for sharing this Michael.
    It actually set a guide map for me to learn and grow my blog.
    For the moment, I only use Adsense and Amazon affiliate, which not really making money, building genuine traffic is the key thing I need to focus on now.

  5. Onibalusi Bamidele says:

    This post is awesome Mike, and it is even more effective because it is what you implemented and got results from.

    It’s really great to see how getting rid of affiliate product brought you great results and I will start testing with affiliate products on my blog to see what results I can get.

    Thanks so much for the great post and have a great day,

  6. Fazal Mayar says:

    Nice stuff Micheal. What I like about you is that you have ethics, some bloggers and internet marketers just care about money and not about what they offer! You are right for selling your business, 10 or 20 years from now, I too want to sell my site!

  7. Very very good post, one of your best in my opinion! Good job Michael!

  8. Nice one Michael,
    I liked the one how you got rid of some Twitter crap. There’s just too much Twitter crap around these days. Blog post Idea?(hint hint)
    And what#s with the health dude? You got me worried a bit there. Nothing serious I hope..
    All the best,

  9. RandySmith@InternetMarketingRambles says:

    Another good post Michael,

    I always like it when people give straight info about what’s working and what isn’t!

    You’ve shared some great information in your last couple of posts…. it’s certainly got me coming back to see each new one 🙂

    It’ll be interesting to see what you create in terms of selling a business… as so many of us create a brand of our own names (just as you have done) – that it would be hard to sell those businesses!

    So how you go about it will make a fascinating read 🙂


  10. Publishing content and then sending my subscribers to read it works the best for me. Thanks for all the tips & ideas you share with us, Michael.


  11. Awesome post man! I love the way you speak your mind in this post! Well done bro 🙂 Thanks for sharing!

  12. Joshua Zamora says:

    Great post mike! Love the twitter story!! Way to tell them to F*** off! Lol

    Thanks for being fully transparent and giving us a behind the scenes look.

  13. Nic Penrake says:

    Quality analysis on how you’re marketing, refreshingly honest, too. One of the few IM bloggers I read every time. Cheers.


  14. Hey Michael,
    Thanks for this interesting insight into your business. You have some really awesome techniques and ideas and your articles have been a huge help to me so far. Congratulations on the success of PopUp Domination BTW. I am recognising it all over the net these days and always have to chuckle to myself when I see it… You can be very proud of this achievement.

  15. I love this post. So far I have only made one of this work for me — selling service. My virtual assistant blog started as a form of therapy for work but I also made some money off it some of my clients came from the blog.

    By the way Michael, just wanted to let you know that I downloaded your LinkedIn interview with Lewis and I listened to it several times already. Thanks for putting out such great content.

  16. Michael…once again some great info for newbies and seasoned marketers. Thank you, Jim.

  17. Michael,

    Transparency is awesome! One of the great things about this business is that there are plenty of things that will work with integrity and persistence. Actually, that is a good and necessary model for any business. You have been a great example to many.
    Could you share with us which of the eleven was most profitable?
    Also, which of these methods do you suppose would work for smaller (traffic) sites?
    Live it LOUD!

  18. Douglasi says:

    Great post Michael. Concise and forthright.

    Check your inbox for an email I sent you regarding this post. I hope it helps.


  19. Syed Balkhi says:


    I hate people who are not honest 😉 I guess it helps networking that you found out that the twitter product you removed, was trying to sell your idea to your competitors.

    People really don’t understand the fact that you should be well connected with your competitors. Not that I see us being competitors anyways lol.

    I think I know the service you are talking about 😉

    Why not just publicly mention them? I won’t do so just to honor the fact that you didn’t do it.

    • Syed Balkhi says:

      Working on a new project that will be launched this Monday.

      Aside from that invested in a new startup….

      Got invited to Summit Series << This is pretty legit stuff….

      Speaking at events… will be at Blog World Expo East in May… along with WordCamp Atlanta and WordCamp Raleigh in May as well…

      We need to have a chat sometime 🙂

  20. Good going Michael, everywhere i go I see pop up dom, looking forward to the next iteration.

  21. James Schramko says:

    Michael great review. I love that you are building a business to sell. Smart and correct.

  22. Juan from Vender Desde Casa says:

    What a great list of tips! I’ve just started my own blog and this list will help me learn a lot about business.

    Thank you for sharing this.