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Book Review: Click Millionaires by Scott Fox (Plus a Giveaway!)

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Click Millionaires by Scott Fox is the latest book for people hoping to make money online. I don’t know about you, but whenever someone makes the promise to teach you how to quit your job and become an Internet millionaire, I get a little suspicious. As someone who earns a living through virtual work, I know just how much time, dedication, and hard work it takes to be successful. I find that many of the books out there on this topic are nothing more than a step above scams.

This is not the case with Click Millionaires, but that said, make sure you read this entire review before pulling out your credit card. Disclaimer: I received a free copy of this book to review.

“The traditional American dream centered on individual financial achievement–where becoming a ‘millionaire’ allowed you to control your own life, afford anything you want, and live on your own terms. But today the phrase ‘Click Millionaire’ captures the revolutionary idea that lifestyle benefits like independence, security, and self-confidence–formerly only available to the wealthy–are now available to anyone who chooses to build a successful lifestyle business online. As you can see from the definition above, money is important to Click Millionaires, but it’s not the only thing that matters to the ‘new rich.’ Money is not the destination on your life’s road trip; it’s just the gas to help you enjoy the journey.” – Scott Fox, Click Millionaires

First, before purchasing any book, I think it’s important to understand the target audience. In the case of Click Millionaires, you’ll find this book helpful if you are a beginner. Click Millionaires gives a great overview of all the ways you can get started making money online. He covers blogging, podcasting, creating videos, freelancing and more – all good options for people unhappy at their office jobs and hoping to get started earning money online.If you are already well-versed in the world of making money online, though, Click Millionaires is not going to be as useful to you.

Scott’s book is great about giving you brief looks at all the avenues you can take for success online, but whatever you choose, you’re going to have to do more research to find out exactly how to optimize your time online. If Scott went into that kind of detail in his book, it would be  be thousands and thousands of pages! So be warned – if you decide, for example, that podcasting is the right route for you, you’re going to have to become more educated about it. You can’t simply read Scott’s book and turn into a podcasting millionaire. What is great, however, is that Scott gives readers tons of resources for finding more information. He sets you up for success.

The most valuable part of Click Millionaires is Part Five: How to Find Your Niche on the Internet. Choosing a niche is super important to making money online, and I believe that Scott explains how to do this very well. I also love all the interviews he includes in this book. It’s great to hear about stories straight from the people who’ve found success online.

I don’t agree with every piece of advice in this book. In fact, I think that Click Millionaires makes the same mistake that make “make money online” books and information products make – it sounds too easy. Making money online is anything but easy. Can you do it? Can you become a millionaire online?

Yes, I think you can. But it takes years of hard work and most people will never get there. The people who have become overnight successes online caught lightening in a bottle. They won the Internet business lottery. So be wary of anyone selling you hope. Don’t buy Scott’s book if you think you’ll be lounging on your own private island this time next year. Buy Scott’s book because you realize there is potential to earn money online and you want to learn about some of the paths you can take to do this.

Want to come to your own conclusions about Click Millionaires? This is your chance! Scott has graciously offered THREE copies of Click Millionaires to lucky BlogWorld readers.

How to Win:

Scott talks about making money in niche markets in his book, giving examples that range from a flight attendant who tells work stories via her podcast to a man who runs a message board about raising chickens. He’s also on the Making Money from Your Favorite Niche Market panel for BlogWorld New York. So, to win a copy of Scott’s book, leave a comment telling us: What is your favorite niche site?

Do you have a favorite fashion blogger who inspires you? Are you in awe of the videos your local baker posts about how to decorate cakes? Would you love to be as successful online as a friend who runs a forum for novice gardeners? Tell us about this site and you’ll be entered to win a copy of Scott’s book! Hurry, the entry deadline is May 25, 2012!

(Fine print: Winner will be drawn using Random.org and notified via email. Winner must respond within five business days to claim this prize. You may comment as often as you like, but only one comment per person will count as an entry. Commenting from multiple accounts and other attempts to cheat the system will result in disqualification. Only comments answering the above question will count as entries, though other comments are welcome. Odds of winning depend on the number of entries received. All decisions made by BlogWorld are final. Void where prohibited.)

How to Start Making Money from Ads on your Blog

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… by Scott Fox, ClickMillionaires.com

How to Start Making Money from Ads on your Blog

By Scott Fox, ClickMillionaires.com

Don’t make the mistake of starting a new website expecting the “big boys” of Fortune 500 company advertisers to show up and advertise. As discussed in my previous post, “Why Big Advertisers Avoid Your Blog… (The Ugly Truth)”, you need to earn their attention by building an audience and traffic appropriate to their brands first.

How to Start Making Money from Ads on a New Blog
If you want to start making money today, here are 4 levels of online advertising you can use even if your blog’s traffic is small or you have just launched a new niche web site:

1. Advertising Network Ads: Your site can start attracting ad dollars today by installing ad code from services like Google’s Adwords or Adbrite. These networks are free to join and will be happy to populate your site with advertising from relevant advertisers immediately.

2. Affiliate Advertising: The next level is to promote products for others in exchange for a sales commission. If you can find products/services that match the needs of your audience, this can be profitable. It is also a revenue strategy that you can start immediately.

Visit Amazon.com, CJ.com, Linkshare.com, Shareasale.com, or find individual companies that offer affiliate programs for products that your audience would like. This can also be a good way to get pro-level “big name” advertisers’ ads on your site because many major companies offer affiliate programs today online.

(TIP: Be sure to disclose your affiliation with these products/companies so that you don’t run afoul of FTC advertising guidelines for bloggers.)

3. Directly Negotiated Ads: If you can find products that are a “perfect” match for your audience, you may be able to recruit your first advertisers even when your blog’s audience is small.

Photo editing software for a digital photography blog or ebooks on weight loss for your weight loss blog are good examples.

A favorite ad target of mine is to look for industry-specific conferences. If your audience is from a particular industry, conference organizers are likely to want to advertise even if your audience is small because it is so targeted.

4. Your Own Products: The most profitable advertising is often for your own products. As a new blogger, you may not have your own products yet. But when you are ready, using your own ad space to promote your own products can be highly profitable. (Plus, there’s no negotiation required!).

5. Fortune 500 Ads: As discussed in my previous post, it’s tough to get major brand-name advertisers to buy advertising on a small website or new blog. But if you work your way through the four levels of advertising above, you can grow your audience and revenues together to reach the point where even the “big boys” are likely to direct their media buying agencies to advertise with you.

All of these advertising sales strategies can help you create a revenue model for a new blog early in its development. As your audience grows, you can work your way through these four levels of advertising strategies. They will help you make money at each step, and eventually
position you for level 5, which is the placement of ads from Fortune 500 corporations with the truly big advertising budgets we all dream about.

What questions or suggestions do you have about this approach?
Which ad strategies have you found most profitable for new blogs?

Scott Fox is the host of the online marketing success coaching community ClickMillionaires.com. He is a serial startup executive, podcaster, and author whose e-business strategy coaching helps solopreneurs, small business owners, and corporations make more money online. He is the best-selling author of two books: Internet Riches and e-Riches 2.0: Next Generation Online Marketing Strategies. Visit http://www.ScottFox.com for free email newsletters and http://www.ClickMillionaires.com for a free trial of his personalized coaching community.

Why Big Advertisers Avoid Your Blog … (The Ugly Truth)

Author:

… by Scott Fox, ClickMillionaires.com

Are you praying for big name advertisers to show up to make money on your new blog? It’s not going to happen.

I recently had a Private Coaching Call with an entrepreneur who is starting a blog to serve the needs of the parents of kids with special needs. It’s an admirable cause but her business model strategy was way off.

Why? Because her assumption was that advertising from the major drug companies would be her primary revenue stream.

Unfortunately for her that’s not likely to happen, at least not yet. If you are like her, counting on advertising revenue to support your blogging habit, here’s a smarter way to plan your advertising sales strategy.

Big Brands Spend More On Advertising Than Your Blog Can Handle
It’s a nice fantasy to think that your niche-targeted blog can attract advertising from Fortune 500 companies. Big companies seem to be your “dream advertisers”. They spend hundreds of millions of dollars each year to attract more customers. Why wouldn’t they be interested in reaching your audience, too?

Why Aren’t Big Companies Advertising on Your Blog?
Because it’s too much work! If your blog targets a niche audience then your audience is probably too small to interest corporate advertisers. The time it takes for their media buyers to find your site, verify your traffic, contact you, negotiate a deal, track the ROI, pay you, etc. is likely too much trouble for a small ad buy.

Big Brands Usually Buy Their Ads Through Media Buying Agencies
Multimillion dollar corporate advertising budgets are handed out to a variety of media buying agencies. Each ad buyer is in charge of attracting new customers through a specific “channel”. So a Ford Motor Company, Pfizer Pharmaceuticals, McDonald’s, T-Mobile, or Apple Computer, might give $2,000,000 to a TV buying agency, $1,000,000 to a print buying agency, $500,000 to an online ad buying agency, etc.

In most cases the budget allocated for online advertising with niche audiences like yours is a very small percentage of those overall budgets. That means that the attention and time invested in such ad purchases is often handed to a junior account representative at a small agency that gets less attention than the bigger buys for TV or print ads.

So What Happens Next?
Just as you would do if you had her job, that junior account rep does her work as quickly as possible. That usually means spending the money allocated for niche online ads in as few ad buying transactions as possible, probably with an ad network that makes placing those ads fastest. Unfortunately, 1 or 2 ad buys with Google Adwords, Facebook, or a similar advertising network can spread their brand messages more quickly and efficiently across the web than working one at a time with small sites like yours.

Your Little Blog?
Until your blog gets enough traffic to demonstrate a real “return on investment” for the media buyer’s time and their clients advertising budget, the big companies are likely to skip over your web site. (And if you do see ads from big companies on your competitors’ blogs, those ads are likely affiliate ads, not directly purchased “real” ads.)

So How Can You Make Money from Ads on your Blog?

As I told my coaching client, don’t start your new blog expecting the “big boys” to show up and advertise right away. Advertisers large and small are simply seeking qualified potential customers. If you earn their attention by building an audience and traffic appropriate to their brands, they will actually start calling you as your traffic grows.

Today you can get started by focusing on publishing quality content, growing an audience, and earning ad revenues from smaller advertisers first. That is the foundation for a successful advertising-based business model.

For more details on these online advertising strategies, watch my video “How to Make Money with Banner Ads”, and see my next Guest Post “How to Start Making Money from Ads on your Blog” which will post NEXT WEEK.

What questions or suggestions do you have about this strategy?
Have you had luck recruiting big name advertisers to new blogs?

Please watch for Part Two of this post next week. I’ll discuss how to start making money from online advertising today if you have a small or niche web site like my friend above.

Scott Fox is the host of the online marketing success coaching community ClickMillionaires.com. He is a serial startup executive, podcaster, and author whose e-business strategy coaching helps solopreneurs, small business owners, and corporations make more money online. He is the best-selling author of two books: Internet Riches and e-Riches 2.0: Next Generation Online Marketing Strategies. Visit http://www.ScottFox.com for free email newsletters and http://www.ClickMillionaires.com for a free trial of his personalized coaching community.

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