- Written by : Zac Johnson
- Published on : Feb 18 2008
- Page Views : 588 views
First off, I would like to make it clear that this post is NOT to impress you, but to impress upon you what’s possible! This is a quick review on how I went from one of my worst years of making money online to my best year, and all it took was one big idea, one web site and several hundred hours of effort along with many sleepless nights. This is “How I Made $860,538.38 Profit in 4 Months!“.
MARKETING EXPERIENCE & RIDING THE WAVES:
Time and time again, I talk about how you must change your marketing niche every once in a while to continuously make new money online. Over the years I have done everything from content web sites, to sweepstakes and freebie type sites, to running my own affiliate programs and even permission based email marketing. In early 2004 I had one of my best years with making money online, then later on in the year things started to slack off and this continued on through most of 2005. At the time I wasn’t making much money and it was quite depressing. It’s very tough to get back into the groove when you hit a few underachieving projects in a row. In short, I was in a dip… and at the bottom of my latest successful wave. It wasn’t until October 2005 that I came up with my next big idea that would soon bring me my best months and year!
FIND A NEW IDEA & TAKE CONTROL OF IT!
Social networking was just starting to catch fire and for months I knew there was a way to profit from it, but I just hadn’t come up with an idea yet. MySpace had millions of users on their network 24 hours a day, there had to be a way to take advantage of this. Soon enough I realized, instead of trying to sell to all of these users, why not offer them something for free. I ran through some ideas and came up with my own site to provide free content for social network users. To make a long story short, my site and my content went viral extremely fast. Instead of having users upload their own content or have to search around for what they were looking for, I provided everything for free. In no time I was receiving thousands of users to my site daily. At max points I was pushing up to 180,000+ unique visitors per day, while pushing TERABYTES of data bandwidth. Imagine hosting thousands of images, viewed by millions across several different social networks!
MANAGEMENT OF MASSIVE GROWTH:
Just two months after going live with my new site, I was starting to accumulate some amazing hosting costs. Imagine the cost on hosting thousands of widgets, text applications and images, which are loaded millions of times a day across social networks like MySpace! The only reason why I was able to afford these insane hosting costs, was because of the massive volume of users I was receiving back to my site, not only through social networks, but also from Google and other search engines. You only need a small percentage of a very big number to click on ads, fill out surveys or take any action, to make money. In two short months I went from having a single dedicated server to having over TEN, then with the insane bandwidth costs added in I was paying up to $12,000 a month. At this time I was currently with EV1Servers.net, and leasing all of my servers. Since I’m not a tech/programmer type guy, I also had a server management team watching my servers constantly to make sure they were always running, just being down for a few minutes would have lost $100s of dollars. This server management team was not part of EV1Servers, and cost $1000 a month to manage all of the servers, and keep the servers balancers in place. By the end of the third month, I talked with my server management team and we decided it was time to for me to invest in my own servers and take out the middleman for hosting. I went on to order 17 servers from Dell, which are all held and managed in a data center now.
MONETIZATION IS KEY:
On average, my site was receiving around 100,000 unique visitors per day, and I was generating most of my ad revenue through Yahoo Publisher Network, ValueClick Media and CasaleMedia. It wasn’t until a year later that I would start testing CPA offers on the site. To my surprise, the CPA offers from networks like NeverBlueAds worked extremely well. Originally I had stayed away from promoting a few of their offers because I thought they were over saturated and wouldn’t convert. I finally took their advice and listed a few on the site and to this day they are still pushing some great earnings through the site.
TO EXPAND, SELL OR STAY THE SAME:
Back in April, I wrote a post asking the question… “To Sell, or Not to Sell?“… This was a question I had to ask myself when I was approached by a company that wanted to merge/purchase my MySpace resource site. I not only turned down their seven-figure deal, but I was lucky enough to not be one of the many sites screwed by the company, as they tried buying many other sites as well. Once acquired by the company, they would wreck the site with adult-like video content and I heard from several people on how they got screwed out of their owed money and contracts.
SUCCESS IS FOUND:
Two years, and over seven-figures later… my little site idea that rapidly became one of my most profitable ideas yet, is still running strong. Despite the fact that I really haven’t touched the site in several months, it’s still receiving over 25,000 uniques per day and still making a decent amount of change.
As I mentioned earlier, three of the main initial revenue sources I monetized my site with were ValueClick Media, CasaleMedia and Yahoo Publisher Network. While I did use other programs such as NeverBlueAds and Google Adsense later on, these three programs were heavily used during months of peak traffic. As for promotion costs of the site, during this three month period, there were none. No PPC Advertising either, everything was viral traffic and a couple links off my other sites. This write up focused on how I made $860,538.38 PROFIT in 4 months. The site is now well over two years old and has since earned over seven figures in profit/earnings.
ValueClick Media is a company that buys your web site advertising space on a CPM basis. From my stats chart below, you can see the monthly increase in revenue went from $243.63 to nearly $30,000 a month.
CasaleMedia provides the same type of service as ValueClick Media, but are more strict with acceptance into their program. They also have higher CPM rates, but usually purchase a smaller percentage of your ad space. Peak earnings with CasaleMedia were around $7,000 a month.
One of the major reasons for my dramatic increase in income, was due to the release of the Yahoo Publisher Network. This program, run by Yahoo, is basically their response to Google Adsense. Like Adsense, you are paid an unknown percentage for each click you send to the contextual advertisements displayed on your site.
It wasn’t til about a year after launching the site, that I would start testing with CPA offers from NeverBlue. To my surprise, the majority of offers I listed on the site performed extremely well. Even though I thought the market was over saturated on these offers, there was still a high demand. With the new revenue generated from NeverBlue, the site was able to pull in another $60,000+.
For any of the doubters, or photoshop addicts… Just to prove my legitimacy, take a look at the video below!