- Don’t “get” Twitter, Facebook and the like?
- Consider “normal” an insult?
- Typically only lurk in forums and rarely or never post anything?
- Are generally out of touch with popular trends?
- Feel article writing or this “blogging” thing are unnatural for you?
- Have no idea what the mystical “other people” want?
- Don’t really care much about what they want?
- Have above average intelligence?
- Are not rich yet?
If you answered “yes” to 6 or more of the above, congratulations! You might find something of interest in this post. On the other hand, the list above strongly implies asocial tendencies and lack of social skills, and since I’d say “yes” to all of the items there, the ideas expressed below may not be easy to grasp. We’ll see.
Everybody needs money. Making money online seems like an attractive idea – it promises freedom and the coveted dream of “residual income”, meaning you could just sit back and watch your favorite currency units roll in.
Unfortunately it turns out that most attractive methods for generating online income require a non-zero understanding of human psychology and lots (and I mean lots) of communication skills. After all, marketing is communication (and vice versa). So what if you don’t particularly enjoy talking with strangers? You’re screwed (like me). If it’s not talking, it’s writing. Same thing. You can learn to do it better, but you won’t necessarily feel good about it.
I’ve read lots of articles telling to choose something you like doing and see if you can make some money from that. I’ve addressed this issue in an earlier post, but here’s a short summary – nobody cares about obscure personal hobbies and the communication/marketing part is still implied no matter what you do. Unique content is worthless if no-one knows about it.
Okay, enough with the whining, let’s see some ideas! Here are some thoughts about how you could make some money online even if you can fully relate to the grim view I presented above. Certain familiarity with IT, marketing and SEO is assumed.
Throw away the hat
Black, white? Bleh, what matters is who’s got the #1 position in Google! Right? Maybe. While I don’t find things like spamming and made-for-adsense sites consisting of nothing more than scraped content terribly appealing, there are some techniques worth knowing. The color is irrelevant; do what works and feels right and don’t limit yourself to only learning one side of “the Force”. Subscribe to Blue Hat SEO and read through the archives – it’s a goldmine. For a true sociopath the fully-blackhat approach might work better, because it’s largely a numbers game. Personally, I prefer whitehat & grayhat strategies, though I’ve had some limited success with highly questionable tactics in the past.
Write about trivial things
Use a keyword research tool to find low-competition phrases people search for. Select those queries that seem trivial and obvious for you. This will allow you to write about them easily, because you already know everything there is to know about them. Start up a blog and post about the topics. Optimize the blog for search engines, get links, get on the first page of Google and make money from AdSense or affiliate offers.
If you blog about things you really are interested in, you’re unlikely to get a lot of visitors (if you do, you’re either very lucky or a true genius, or not a renegade after all). I realize this is not what you’re “supposed to” believe, but I speak from experience (self-selection bias is a possibility). On this blog, there are three posts that are optimized for search engines and cover topics I find trivial. See if you can find them… These 3 posts get around 30% of the traffic. Note that there are around 60 posts in total.
Don’t buy it
Whatever e-book, course or piece of software “it” is, you can often get it (or something else that’s just as good) for free online. Failing that, you can make it yourself. Yes, I’m a programmer.
Listen to people slightly above your level
Don’t read John Chow. Be careful with Steve Pavlina. If you want advice and information, look to those who have had more success than you, but are still within reach. Trying to apply guru-level techniques while being almost broke is likely to discourage. Often it’s just too hard to relate to what successful people say if you’re not so successful yourself.
Don’t believe a word I say
Ah-ha, you didn’t expect this one! Everything above is just food for thought. I don’t have all the answers in the business/financial niche. I’m not “there” yet and I don’t know if and how I will get there. Hell, the future is grim and uncertain! So what? Maybe I’m not the only one (though being the only one blogger to ever write something like this would be cool, I highly doubt it’s possible).
Expect a more meaningful and emotionless post soon. I don’t know why I bother. Oh wait, it’s called “hope”. Whatever.Related posts :