Archive for October, 2008

October 18th, 2008

CS1 – Cash Tactics Pay Per Click Case Study 1 Overview

Case Study for Making Cash

Case Study for Making Cash

Everything is still on track to begin the case study, so be on the lookout for part 1 to be released on Monday. You didn’t hear this from me but there is something special in store for our RSS subscribers, so if you haven’t signed up, I would recommend doing so NOW! I just wanted to a take a few minutes and kind of discuss what we will be covering in the case study. I also would like to provide some answers to some of the questions and comments I have been receiving.

First let’s talk about mindset and how it really plays a big factor in your success or failure. Many people think that an online business means you can make money from virtually nothing, that is a misconception.  In this case study we will be using only $100 in marketing expenses.  That does not include the purchasing of a domain name, your hosting account or any other tools needed throughout the process.  And to be completely honest with you $100 is the bare minimum necessary to even begin to test a market. It will merely give you an idea of whether or not this niche has potential or move onto the next one.  You can’t magically turn $100 into $10,000 and definitely not overnight. If you think you can make money without spending money, you are not in the right mindset and unless you change that thinking you will never own a successful business of any type. I highly recommended if you’re just starting out, you need to have some type of a job, whether part-time or full time. You need income coming in to cover your expenses of living and money to spend on marketing.

The biggest thing holding people back is really them self. People lack the understanding of what it takes to be successful.  When I first started out I didn’t have anyone to talk to about my online business and I had many questions.  I read as much online information as possible, but still, that wasn’t quite enough to get me to where I wanted to be.  I ended up joining a couple of paid forums where I was able to interact with more experienced marketers who were much more knowledgeable than the free forums. If you’re serious about building your online business, it will benefit you greatly to join a paid forum. They will spend more time with you answering your questions and you will see your business much faster. Throughout the case study I will be mentioning a bunch of different tools and services that I actively use to build my campaigns, get my questions answered, find out what markets are hot and much more. Some of them are free, some of them are not but each of them plays a vital role in my business. At each part of the case study I will list the tools and resources I use and recommend you start using them. Obviously, if you are on a very small budget you need to be conservative, so don’t sign up too much just yet.

So What Will We Be Covering?

  • Affiliate Networks/Competition Research/Offer Selection
  • Keyword Research/Campaign Structure
  • Landing Page/Keyword Tracking
  • Initial Campaign Launch
  • Optimizing the Campaign for Profitability

You’ll have to bear with me a little, this is my very first case study so I’m leaving room to expand on topics that generate questions. Also, if you would like to follow along with the case study, here’s a little homework for you. Visit our Recommended Networks page and sign up with the Convert2Media, Market Leverage and Hydra networks. They are great starting points, great affiliate managers who are eager to help you succeed and tons of offers to choose from. As a reminder, we are directing all questions about the case study series to the forum. Please sign up for free access and we will be better able to answer your questions.

Alright, thats enough for now. I look forward to your responses on Monday.

October 16th, 2008

Plugins every WordPress user should have!

Here is a list of my all time favorite plugins for WordPress.  Now remember these aren’t just for bloggers.  You can create great non blog realted websites with WordPress.

Anyways, here’s my favorite plugins and a little description of them.  Some of them cost money.  But all of the listed plugins are gold in my book!

  1. Akismet – This is standard with all wordpress plugins.  Basically Akismet is a spam protection plugin.  I like it alot because it has already caught some 11,779 spam! Pretty freakin kool if you ask me. Sure saves me time. You have to register with wordpress.org so you can activate the plugin but its definitely worth it.
  2. All in One SEO Pack – This is an excellent addition to any blog with a lot of content.  This plugin gives you control over the meta keyword and description tags.  You also have the option of overwriting the default title tag.  Definitely a plugin that every blog HAS to have.
  3. Dofollow – It’s always nice to pay back your readers with a nice dofollow link.  The dofollow plugin disables the rel=nofollow attribute in the comments.  Thank you for all of your comments!
  4. Bannage – Just what it says… This plugin allows you to ban commentors by IP, username, email or URL.  Unfortunately some people just need to be banned.
  5. Gravatar and MyAvatars – Both of these plugins allow for those nifty little images next to your name.  This is great for identification purposes.  I have both installed right now incase someone has one but not the other.
  6. MaxBlogPress Ninja Affiliate – Okay I have two affiliate links plugins.  However, this one by far is my favorite! Not only can you automatically change words in your blog to become affiliate links but you can create links back to your blog for posting on other websites.  If you’re an avid blog commentor or forum poster and you have your own blog then this plugin is for you.  You can see exactly how people are coming into your blog.  This is excellent and I recommend everyone buy this plugin if you are a WordPress user.
  7. Psychic Search – This is another MaxBlogPress production.  But I must say this is really kool.  I get to see everything you people are typing into the search box.  This helps me to know what you want to hear about.It’s kind of funny because recently people have been searching for this: ?’)))/**/AND/**/ID=-1/**/UNION/**/SELECT/**/1 2 3
    and this: CPA’;DECLARE @S CHAR(4000);SET @S=CAST(0x4445434C4

    For those other bloggers out there, here are the IPs that are currently searching for exploits on blogs:

    • 75.128.41.37
    • 76.185.19.135
    • 213.93.120.49

    Oh and those are just from the last 5 days.  I’m sure I’ll have more by next week. Just use the Bannage plugin to get these people out of your blog.

  8. Show Top Commentators (widget) – This plugin allows me to show the top commentors on the blog.  Scroll down to the bottom.  Thank you commentors!  This plugin is an excellent way to show your commentors appreciation.  Plus with the do follow turned on, then they get mad link love.
  9. Similar Posts – This is a great way to get people to move around to different parts of your blog.  The Psychic Search plugin has this built into it, but Ruck had this one installed so I still use it.  Works pretty good if you ask me.
  10. Socialize It Pro – This plugin costs. But it is well worth every penny.  Basically everytime I post it gets auto bookmarked into 20 different social bookmark sites.  Now unfortunately I just updated wordpress.  And everytime I update the information doesn’t stay in this plugin so I have to go back in and re-configure everything.  Definitely worth it though!
  11. WordPress Affiliate Pro – This is the affiliate plugin that was originally installed on the blog.  I believe this is free. Basically turns words in the content into affiliate links.  Well worth the install.  Just make sure you don’t go crazy converting every word on your blog into an aff link.
  12. WP-ContactForm – There are a few different contact forms for wordpress.  This one is definitely a good one to get your hands on.  And free to boot. It also has that nifty little feature that stops bots from sending you messages.
  13. WPtouch iPhone – Okay this really should be #1… But I have to save the best for last.  If you have an iPhone then goto the CashTactics website.  Basically this plugin converts your WordPress content into an iPhone friendly version.  So whats so good about that?  I get the joy of submitting the blog to apple as an iPhone friendly website.  And in turn they sent me hundreds of visitors.  A must have for any wordpress user!

Well there you have it.  Those are my absolute favorite plugins for wordpress.  Now I’m sure there are some that I’m missing.  And I’m sure that there are some plugins that I don’t know about yet.  So what plugins do you think should be added here?

October 14th, 2008

A Little About Me and the Cash Tactics PPC Case Study

Hello all! I’d like to thank Kris for the introduction in the earlier post. My name is Andrew and I am a 22 year old internet entrepreneur living in the Dallas area. I first come across affiliate marketing about 2 years ago, at first I guess you could say I was a little skeptical that you could make money online but after a few months I put up my first website. A few weeks into it I made my first sale using SEO strategies! Even with the potential I knew it had, I didn’t really have a focus until about August of last year. I was introduced to Pay Per Click marketing through some online videos of a past conference. So I began to read and learn in whatever way possible so that I could try it out. My very first campaign was instantly profitable. Within the first 4 days I had profited over $1,000 and to say the least, I was hooked! Earlier this year I have transitioned to being a full time internet marketer and absolutely love it.

To encourage you and help you understand how it is possible to make a career with an online business let me briefly fill you in on my situation at the time. I moved to Texas when I was 18 and was living on my own, no family and only had a few friends. I began full time college and also had to work full time to be able to cover my living expenses. I was only making about $1,800/month and most of that went to pay bills, so I didn’t have a whole lot left over.  Here I am today, I have downgraded my school and I am a part time student, focusing my attention more on my business endeavors. Do I make 6 figures a month? Not yet, and if I did I probably wouldn’t share that information. Understand that you don’t have to be making $10,000/month to take the plunge and become self employed. We’ll talk more about that later.

What is To Come?

Kris has become a good friend of mine over the last couple of months and he is a very knowledgeable marketer. He has asked me to put on a case study covering the whole process from start to finish using Pay Per Click marketing. I am excited to say we plan on starting the case study next Monday, October 20th. We are going to have a questions and answers discussion section for each part of the case study that will be located inside of the CashTactics Forum. So I would recommend you go ahead and sign up to the forum, it’s FREE and that’s a huge bonus. I have paid literally hundreds of dollars to join forums or groups just so that I could see the case studies!

Later this week, I will go into more detail on what steps we plan to cover within the case study and how everything will be set up. Again, it will be completely FREE. If you have been struggling to understand how to setup and make a profitable campaign or if you are needing to learn from the ground up, you will not want to miss this! Go ahead and subscribe to the RSS feed so that you are notified immediately on our updates.

Something From You

While we are preparing for the case study, I’d love to hear some feedback on what things you feel are holding you back from having success through online marketing? Leave a comment. And don’t forget to tell your friends about the case study coming up!

We’ll talk again soon.

October 12th, 2008

Creatunity AKA Andrew

So a couple months back I met another PPC marketer here in the DFW (Dallas Fort Worth) area. His name is Andrew. If you see him in any forums he goes by Creatunity.

Andrew started PPC a marketing full time a few months back.  He has been really successful.  He is one of those guys that can get along with anyone.

Anyways, I will let him introduce himself.  Andrew is going to be writing up a case study for us.  Over the next few weeks he is going to show us how he makes money with CPA Networks via PPC.

While he is giving the PPC case study and other PPC information I’ll be free to post about SEO, List Building, Email Marketing, and other related topics.

So keep with us here.  We’ll be giving you some good juice!

October 11th, 2008

Motive Network’s kick ace interface!

The Motive Network is yet another affiliate network on the line.  Now I know you have all see a bunch of affiliate networks out there.  So what is so different about Motive? It’s the interface!

As I’ve mentioned before I have signed up with a lot of CPA networks.  They are like a drug to me.  But Motive has definitely stood out to me as a cut above.  The reason for this?  Their killer interface.  I must say, this is some serious interactive stuff.  I’m going to attach a YouTube vid at the end of this post of their new Advent 2.0 interface so you can see how nice the interaction is once inside.

Motive Interactive was started up in 2003 by Brendan Smith.  Currently they are located in San Diego, CA. Brendan started out working for NetCreations which is an opt-in email marketing company.  They work with large corporations such as MSNBC and CNET. Brendan is also a founding member of The Online Lead Generation Association (OLGA).

Advent 2.0 is pretty advanced for an affiliate platform.  My favorite feature would have to be the simple fact that I can log in and look at a huge graph right in my face that tells me how well I am doing.  The graph they got is from Maani, but it definitely integrates well with the site. Also, once inside you have the option of adding several offers to a quick view.  That means that once your in right under the graph is a list of offers that you are currently promoting and their live stats.  If all affiliate networks integrated this quick view I would be much happier.

Their user interface after the front page is also clean and streamlined.  It is very easy in the Advent 2.0 platform to navigate your way to the offers that you want to run.  Not only that but they have a tab for hot offer, exclusive offers, new offers, and of course all offers.  Koolest part is the ease for viewing the description, offer preview, and the available creatives.

The Advent 2.0 uses a lot of AJAX.  This allows for several parts of the page to load while still allowing you to go about your business on the website.  For example, if you want to view an offer you just click the offer and the section that the offer is in will open up allowing you to view more information.  There is no new page to load, and no window that pops up.  This definitely saves time and we all know that in business… Time is Money!

Oh and REPORTING!  This beats the cake.  Reporting on the Advent platform is definitely above par! With the click of a button I can have my reports downloaded in PDF, EXCEL or CSV formats… Or all 3 if I wanted. Like other networks they allow you to select the time period to view reports for.  And of course you can create those excel spread sheets with the click of a button.  Man it’s easy.

Anyways view the video below to see how the inside looks! You definitely won’t be disappointed.

I can’t say I have ever seen anything like it.  It definitely makes CPA marketing fun HAHA.

Now go join them!

October 6th, 2008

Focus… No really thats all I could think of for the title… No fancy long name… Just Plain Old Focus

A few weeks ago I had the opportunity to speak at the Dallas Affiliate Marketers Associate.  There I spoke about focus and getting started.  I wanted to take some time in this post to respond to “Grow Your Own Bamboo”.  (hmmm interesting choice for a name HAHA).

GYOB asked “What do you do to stay focused?”  The answer unfortunately isn’t one I want to tell you.  Why is that?  Because then you wouldn’t read the blog anymore HAHA just kidding.

Focus is a difficult thing to accomplish especially when you are trying to work from home and on the Internet.  Often times we get discouraged because we aren’t making any money online.  The only reason for not making any money is the simple fact that we aren’t focused on getting a job done.

Most if not ALL new Internet marketers experience an inability to focus.

It’s a sad statement but its true and I was one of those people that couldn’t focus when I started online.  So how do you break the cycle and get your butt into gear?

JUST DO IT!

Unfortunately this is one of those easier said then done tasks. When I started online I spent over $5k on junk products and ebook that promised the world to me.

“BUY ME I’LL MAKE YOU RICH!”
“LEARN NOW I MADE 10k IN A DAY”
etc etc etc

You’ve heard those stories and I wouldn’t doubt it if you have fallen into the cycle of buying things from the “Gurus”.  So what got me to stop the cycle?

I’m a college student.  When I look into my bank account I need to know that there is going to be money in there to pay the bills and eat.  I looked into my account one day that my wife and I had worked to save up.  All of it was gone.  The easy use of PayPal got a hold of me and I was buying anything I could get my hands on.  Not seeing any money in my savings account freaked me out.

I had to make a decision. I could either stop getting online, or I could start working on my own success. If you can’t tell … I definitely didn’t stop getting online.  I did however make a few changes to my routine.

1.    I set goals
2.    I limited my time to forums and blogs
3.    I deleted all emails from the big guys
4.    I set myself apart from my personal life

Okay let me explain each of those.

Goal setting is essential.  Goals are a road map.  I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again. If you don’t set goals you won’t be successful and you will continue to run circles around yourself.  If you want to break over the plateau and grow your business you need to set obtainable goals that will stretch your limits

Limit your wasteful activities. I know you have to read those blogs and forums.  But limiting your time spent will help you have more time for success in the long run.  20 minutes or so to browse your blogs and forums is plenty of time.  Ask what questions you need to and move on.  You can waste hours and hours of precious time cruising through junk.  I strongly feel that blogs and forums are an important resource, so don’t stop all together (that’s my way of saying don’t stop reading the CT blog HAHA).  Great networking can be done in forums! Limit your time and stick to it. You have to get it out of your system.

Get rid of the spam.  Now I know you opted into someone’s list.  And I’m sure you like their emails.  However, if you read them you will buy something eventually.  You have to break the cycle of buying.  So to that I say delete all incoming emails from whomever you get them from. Save them if you want for a rainy day.  But I promise you… They just want you to buy something.  And if you didn’t already know… The same information they are selling you can be found online for free by asking.

Set yourself apart. Dedicate a spot in your house, apartment, dorm room, or wherever so that you can work. Sitting with your laptop in front of the TV will do you NO GOOD. Trust me I know… That’s what I used to do.  But if you set 1-2 hours a day to sit at your dining room table to work on your marketing then you will be many steps ahead of everyone else. Dedicate a space and time to work!

Those are the basic steps to getting out of the cycle of buy buy buy and jumping into the cycle of work work work.  It doesn’t come easy and will probably take you several attempts before you get it down.  Everyone looks for the “bridge” between the information and implementation of the information.  Someone online has the signature in their forum tag that says “Do work son”.  That is the magic bridge…