Not because I loved my job so much.
But because back then the world was still very different.
It was a lot tougher to get things off the ground.
You needed to do a hell lot more things on your own.
You had to figure it all out by trial and error.
Back in 2013 a lot of the things we now take for granted were only getting started.
And not a lot of people were talking about it.
Facebook ads were just getting started to become a big thing.
Medium was just getting started to become a big thing.
Online courses were just getting started to become a big thing.
E-commerce platforms for everybody were just getting started.
Dropshipping was only getting started.
All of these things and platforms that enable people like you and me to put ourselves, our work and our passions out there weren’t really available to most of us.
But today, four years later all of this stuff is readily available for everybody.
In 2017 it’s gotten so easy to get started.
I think there has never been a time where it was easier to get started than today.
And I don’t know when this window of opportunity will close again.
But I think it’s going to be pretty soon.
That being said, just because it’s gotten a hell lot easier (and especially cheaper) to get started doesn’t necessarily mean that it’ll be a lot easier to succeed.
But if you have what it takes to succeed, if you’re willing to put in the work, then there really are no barriers to entry anymore.
No matter where you’re from. What your passport says. Or what language you speak.
2017 is the year.
Just like last year was.
Just like the next year will be…
The Internet has leveled the playing field, if you’re ready to learn the game, its rules and are willing to put yourself and your work out there and try things.
If you’re ready to show up over and over again.
And that’s why I wish I hadn’t quit my job back in 2013.
Because if I waited for this day and time I could probably have saved myself 2–3 years of struggle. Of trial and error. Of waiting for the right tools to be around.
But then again, if I hadn’t quit my job back in 2013 I couldn’t be writing this right here…
When me and my partner of back in the days started our first company in 2009, a clothing company (which failed miserably) there were no Facebook ads.
You couldn’t reach anybody.
Unless you had a ton of money.
Which we didn’t have back then.
We were hungry, but we weren’t playing the game right…
So what we did back then was that we created a Facebook profile for our brand and added hundreds if not thousands of people that might like our stuff.
It was the ultimate hustle.
First we had to find those people.
Then we had to add those people.
And then we waited for those people to confirm our friend requests.
And then we wished that those people liked what we had to say.
Getting started was a hassle.
Especially when you couldn’t afford large scale advertisement campaigns.
Or $4 Google Ad Words clicks.
That’s how the game looked like back then.
Large scale advertisement, $4 clicks or building things totally from the ground up and trying to build some sort of grassroots movement.
And today, all you’ve gotta do is to familiarize yourself with Facebook’s Power Editor and you can target pretty much everybody on planet earth who has ever registered a Facebook account for a few cents a click.
It has gotten so easy to get started it’s insane.
Sure, prices are going up and will soon reach heights where it won’t make sense anymore. But as of writing this it still works.
What you could easily do today is that you could work on two to three things at the same time and still work your day job until one of these things starts to take off.
Sure, you’ll have to sacrifice quite a few things.
But that’s always the case.
So instead of going out for fancy dinners once or twice a week invest the cash you make with your day job into ads.
It’s an absolute no brainer.
If you’re not at least trying to build something, something that works for you 24/7, then you’re probably missing out on one of the biggest opportunities of the past ten years or so. Maybe even twenty…
Sure, it’s getting more and more crowded. Every single day. And the window of opportunity is closing one tiny bit more every single day.
Alright. Enough about this now.
Here are some of these opportunities worth taking a closer look at this year. Probably even last year. Or the year before.
I know. None of these things are really new. They’ve been around for a while. But I feel that now is the time where pretty much everybody, no matter how smart you are, how much or little money you have can make this work…
If you have the right mindset and attitude. If you don’t well then nothing will ever work…
This might be one of the biggest opportunities out there.
All you’d have to do is to find a supplier with some products, put those in your Shopify, Ebay or Amazon store with a markup and whenever someone buys something from your store, you go back to your supplier, place the order and send it to them.
It doesn’t get easier than this.
You don’t even have to touch the product once. Or buy inventory.
All you need to do is to order that one item someone just bought in your store and send it straight to the person who bought it in your shop.
How do I know It works?
I do this myself and it generates a couple of hundred dollars in profit every single month.
I take products from Amazon, put them in my Ebay store and wait for people to buy.
You could also do this with products from China.
Cost to getting started?
# BUILDING AN AUDIENCE
It has never been easier to build an audience online. To build a micro tribe of people who love your stuff. Platforms such as Medium, YouTube or iTunes (for podcasts) with built in audiences made it so much easier to build a following.
Sure, because it’s so easy, a lot of people jumped on the bandwagon.
But at the end of the day, 99% of those people will quit and give up because they’re chasing the over night success. Which doesn’t exist…
And the ones who never give up, the ones who are around longer than anybody else will be the ones who will benefit. In a huge way. They will be the ones to grow a micro tribe into a massive tribe…
# ONLINE COURSES
I know. Everybody says that online courses are dead. That you can’t make money with online courses anymore. Just like Amazon is dead when it comes to self publishing
I even said this myself not too long ago. And yes all of these platforms are pretty much dead if all you do is to put your stuff on these platforms and hope that people will find out about you.
Because when you hope for people to find out about you, you’ll be competing with everybody else who’s competing with everybody else who’s hoping to be found.
And there will always be someone who will be cheaper than you. Whose courses will be cheaper than yours. Whose books will be cheaper than yours. And on and on and on.
Prices are racing to the bottom everywhere. Because everybody is hoping to be found. It happens on every platform. On platforms such as Amazon, Udemy, Skillshare, you name it.
That’s why you have to build your own platform. Your platform of followers and fans. Your micro tribe. Those are the people who will search for your name. And then buy your stuff. Not because they search for a topic. But for your name.
And when people know you, when they know your name and search for it online, then they will pay a premium. And that’s how people like Tim Ferriss can charge up to $15 for an ebook while everybody else is struggling to sell 99 cent ebooks.
That’s how some people are able to sell online courses for thousands of dollars while others who are offering the exact same content on a platform like Udemy and are barely able to get $10 a course.
I was able to sell my own online courses for $300-$1000, while on Udemy I might only have been able to sell it to strangers for $10. That’s the power of having a micro tribe.
You’ve gotta be famous. To your micro tribe…
# AFFILIATE PROGRAMS
Pretty much every service, brand or platform has an affiliate program.
What an affiliate program basically allows you to do is to use all the big brand’s products and use them on your own site.
And whenever someone clicks on your link and ends up buying that service, that product or what not you’ll get a commission.
I could for example put a link to a book right here and if you click on that link and buy it on Amazon, then I will get a commission on that sale.
Everybody does it.
Hotels.com does it.
Hostels.com does it.
Expedia does it.
They are all affiliates.
Expedia for example is an affiliate of all the hotels, car rental companies and airline companies.
And whenever you end up booking something through their site, they’ll get a commission.
Everybody can do it. All you need to get started is a website with some content on it to join those affiliate programs.
For example, I use my personal website yanngirard.com for all of these affiliate programs.
No matter if it’s the affiliate program of a travel site, a clothing platform, Amazon or what not.
Did you learn that in business school?
I clearly didn’t.
No one told me about that…
# EMAIL MARKETING
It has never been so easy to build an email list totally from scratch.
Services such as SumoMe allow you to collect email addresses by the hundreds.
Other services such as ConvertKit allow you to build a completely automated email sequence that will guide subscribers through a completely automated email funnel.
You set it up once and then you never have to do anything again.
Except getting people to sign up to your list.
Don’t have a blog or don’t want to produce millions of pieces of content like I do?
You don’t have to.
Just create a simple PDF, head on over to Facebook, start the Power Editor to create ads and create an ad where you promote your PDF to people.
And whenever someone signs up to get that PDF they’ll get your automated email sequence delivered to your inbox.
And at one point you can promote them something.
So what could you promote?
Maybe your online video course.
Or maybe you join an affiliate program and promote someone else’s course.
Email is still THE most powerful tool out there.
Think social media is powerful?
As long as you try to get people off the platform where you don’t own the customer relationship onto a platform you own (e.g. an email list).
And to show you right here and right now how affiliate marketing could look like in real life, here’s a link to a 1 month free trial for ConvertKit.
It’s the service I use myself to build email funnels.
It’s probably the best out there.
It’s usually $29 a month.
But when you click this link right here, you can test it for free for one month…
Now a lot of people say that blogging is dead.
That you can’t make money blogging anymore.
And it’s true.
I said it myself multiple times in the past.
You don’t make money with a blog anymore.
No one clicks on those Google ads on your blog anymore.
And if they do, rates are so low that you won’t even be able to survive in Cambodia only relying on those ads.
But a blog is for something else entirely.
You don’t write a blog to make money.
You write a blog to become someone people enjoy hearing from.
You write a blog to share your ideas with others.
So how do you make money with a blog then?
By introducing people to your world.
And by introducing people to your world you build up trust.
And guess what…
If someone reads your blog about marketing for many years and that someone is now looking for someone to do his or her marketing, well then that person will probably come to you and ask you to do their marketing.
And in case you haven’t noticed yet, I also introduced you to a few other things you could do to monetize your blog. Just go though some of the things again I mentioned earlier.
# BUYER PLATFORMS
Whatever you create, it’s very likely that there’s some sort of platform out there where you can get started uploading your work and start selling it right away to an already existing audience.
Maybe you’re a designer, then you can start an Etsy store.
Maybe you love designing t-shirts. Then you can get started with Spreadshirt or Teespring.
Or maybe you’re a freelancer. There are dozens of platforms for freelancers out there.
Sure, you don’t just put your stuff there and wait for things to happen.
No, you just use them as an additional distribution channel.
Because that’s all they are.
They are one of many distribution channels.
And you should be active on all distribution channels.
You should be on as many platforms as possible.
As a matter of fact, you have to be on every buyer platform where a potential client of yours hangs out.
Fiverr is also a distribution channel.
And guess what. It’s not just a platform where you can make $5. It’s so much more.
It’s a platform where people can test your services pretty much risk free.
And if you’re really good then those people might come back and ask for more.
Sure, most people are there for a bargain.
Sure, if your work isn’t good, then nothing will ever happen.
But if you’re there, if you’re really good, then a lot can happen.
How do I know?
I don’t know.
But here’s what happened to me…
A while ago I was offering one of my books on Fiverr plus a 15 minute free consultation.
Just for the fun of it.
I wanted to see what’s possible.
So one guy ended up buying that book on Fiverr for $5 and got the 15 minute free consultation.
I did a 30 minute consultation because I loved what he was working on.
He also subscribed to my email list.
And a few months later he wanted to hire me.
I told him that I wasn’t for hire.
So in the end he bought a $1000 online video course from me.
Sure, this is not the rule.
It’s the exception.
But if you always follow the rules, then the exception will never happen…
So whatever you do, use all the distribution channels that are available to you.
Go to where your buyers are. Not where you want them to be.
And then bring them onto your own platform.
Like your email list for example…
Today is one of the greatest times to be alive.
There are so many opportunities out there.
Opportunities that most of us are not even aware of.
Opportunities that you can easily grab by doing it on the side.
Opportunities that take time.
Just like a seed needs time, patience and constant watering before it will ever be able to grow into a strong enough tree…
P.S. If you want to know more about some of the above things, I’ve put together a PDF where I discuss some of these things in more detail. With advantages and disadvantages. I called it “10 Ways To Double Your Income.” And yes, most of you will probably not be able to double their income by following the advice that’s in that PDF. But I know for sure, that some of you will…