In my last post (back in April) I gave you a rundown of my passive income strategy. No need to rehash it, you can check it out here.
Well one of the comments on that post really gave me food for thought. It came from a fellow blogger by the name of Oliver Tausend. Here’s what he said:
thanks for sharing your insights and your testimonial about Triberr. I’m just curious, why would you want to create a new product, market it through blog commenting and other efforts and then only make 45 $ -150 $ a day ? I also can’t really see the passive aspect of this type of income.
What do you think ?
I was moving at the time I made that last post, but when the dust finally settled, I really sat down and thought about Oliver’s comment. According to Wikipedia, passive income is described as “income received on a regular basis, with little effort required to maintain it.”
Writing comments isn’t exactly “nothing.” It does, in fact, require effort. I do like (love) the income I derive from it, but it’s still takes work.
So I decided to challenge myself.
“If I stopped blogging, would I really be able to support myself via e-book sales?”
Thanks to Oliver’s inquiring mind, I needed to know just how viable this operation could be if I took an extended holiday. If all my potential customers had to work with were old blog posts and great product reviews, could my little e-book empire sustain itself? Hmmmmm.
That’s when I stopped blogging. Cold turkey. No warnings… no “here’s-why-I’m-not-going-to-be- blogging”… just crickets and tumbleweeds for all.
Lemme tell you… I missed blogging here. Man did I miss it! I was a little sad not interacting with all of my online homies, which just tells you impactful online friendships are.
During my time away I did manage to crank out several e-books (woot!), including a 150+ page monster that I’ll be talking about later this week (double woot!).
But let’s return to my original order of business… was it really passive income?
The short answer is “Kinda”
During the month of April (my last post was April 1), I generated approximately $1,339 in e-book sales. Most of that came from sales of The BIG LIST of Amazon Products, which is sitting over there in the sidebar.
A good percentage of those sales came about because Alex Whalley over at Build Rank Profit talked about my 86 Resources That’ll Help You Become a Profitable Amazon Affiliate article. The traffic I received that day was so good that it was my best day (traffic-wise) here at That Internet Marketing Thing.
In May sales dropped to $785 and in June they dropped yet again to just under $400. This month I’m already over the $150 mark, which is respectable bit of change, considering most people talk about a lull in sales during the summer.
So yes, I did manage to earn passive income doing absolutely nothing. No blog posts, no witty Twitter banter, no forum postings.
Unfortunately, in my neck of the woods, those earnings definitely weren’t enough to sustain my lifestyle. I must continue blogging and promoting my work in order to keep the sales machine moving.
And whilst periodic breaks are do-able, I cannot truly say this is passive income. I’m okay with that. I’ve never been afraid to work, especially when I can set my own hours and call all the shots.
Does no posting = a traffic slowdown?
As time marched on, my traffic levels definitely decreased here.
In April, I had 1,108 unique visitors. In May that number went down to 765. In June there was a less dramatic drop to 692.
During all three months my most popular post was always 86 Resources That’ll Help You Become a Profitable Amazon Affiliate. I believe having an Amazon-related post definitely helped to keep the momentum moving when it came to my selling my BIG LIST of Amazon Products.
Here’s what you can takeaway from my impromptu experience:
1) Online relationships are worth their weight in gold. Though I did manage to generate sales without any recommendations, I got way more in the past with them.
I attribute my blog commenting strategy to meeting bloggers I wouldn’t have broken bread with in any other place. A lot of internet marketers view commenting as a cheap backlinking strategy, but it’s worth so much more than that when done properly.
2) Heck yeah, you can make money talking about Internet marketing! Internet marketing is one of those topics that people say is oversaturated. I was a teensy bit nervous at first because I thought there might’ve been a shred of truth to that.
Well I’ve been running this site for well under a year – (with a 3 month break, nonetheless) – and I’m making money. My good months were all over the $1K mark.
I know it’s not the proverbial “$50,000 in 30 days” that’s often red headlined across the minisite universe, but it’s not pennies either. And I’m definitely not losing money at this point.
If I can make a thousand dollars a month here, I can make $5K with more consistent blogging and traffic.
3) A ton of mediocre backlinks won’t always trump a good content strategy. Some of the content on this blog has achieved top 10 rank in Google… a feat I was able to accomplish within the first month of launching.
But it wasn’t because I was chasing profile links or salivating over comment opportunities on PR7 blogs.
It’s because I enjoy talking about this stuff so I write for my readers. If Google comes a knockin’ while my blogs a rockin’, super. And if not… well that’s why you keep your marketing game strong, and diversify your efforts.
If Google sets the sun on your site, what are your chances of survival? After you finished bitching on moaning, could you pick up the traffic pace somewhere else? If you can’t answer that question with an affirmative, then you’re hustling backwards.
I guess this whole experience has helped me realize just how important it is to work an interlocking system of strategies that involves contact with other bloggers. It was a good lesson to learn early on, and now I’m ready to live that philosophy once again.
Let’s toast to an endless summer, where flip-flops and bikinis are the required uniform, and e-book sales flow like sunscreen on a family beach!