Have you ever wondered how John Chow makes so much money online? The core business and attraction to his blog are simply that he is “John Chow”. What first started off as food/techie blog is now an online resource for anyone looking to make money online and John’s personal ATM machine.
Whenever John Chow needs to make an extra few thousand dollars, all he does is write a new post or send out a mailing to his list. The funny thing is that NOTHING is wrong with this, and that is why John has all of the attention he has!
People love and hate John Chow… and no matter what side of the fence you are on, John keeps laughing all the way to the bank and enjoying life in the process. Just take a look at his Facebook, Twitter and blog followers and you will see his following is well over 250,000 active daily visitors and readers.
While I feel like I’ve known John forever, I actually just started following him around late 2006, right before I went live with this blog. Since then we are always in contact with each other online and usually speak at a few conferences each year and sometimes on the same panel. We just recently spoke at Affiliate Summit in Las Vegas with John Rampton and Syed Balkhi (thanks for the pic!) while discussing “The Secrets of Six Figure Blogging“.
How John Chow Makes Money and What He Has That You Don’t?
There are plenty of things that John Chow does well that makes him the center of attention online no matter where he goes. Besides being one of the tallest Asians you’ll likely ever meet, John is also a funny guy and knows how to monetize the heck out of anything… after all, the tagline of his blog is “I Make Money Showing You How I Make Money” — and it’s the truth! The more ways John figures out how to make money, the more people that follow in his footsteps.
The important thing to realize here is that John’s experience is really no special or different than anyone else, except that he has been able to massive explode his personal brand over the last several years. John Chow even accomplished all of this after getting tossed from the Google search engine for while. That’s right, his site didn’t even come up when you searched for “John Chow” in the search results. Google has since let John’s site rank again at the top for his name, but this is just another achievement to add to his arsenal of business tactics and accomplishments.
Here’s a list of what John Chow has, but can be replicated by anyone else as well:
- Brand – When someone says “John Chow”, there is no doubt who they are talking about.
- Blog – A simple WordPress blog that has generated millions for John, which goes live with 1-2 new posts daily.
- Videos – John loves making videos for his YouTube channel. Once a new video goes live, it will continue to get thousands of new views forever.
- Newsletter – Not only does John use Aweber to power his mailing list, he has makes thousands off of their affiliate program each and every month. John also uses his free guide to drive more leads and signups to his recommended programs, while also building his newsletter at the same time.
- Social Exposure – Well over 100,000 social followers across Twitter and Facebook. Extremely easy, cheap and effective for promoting new posts and revenue opportunities.
- Revenue Sources – Google Adsense was the start, then affiliate marketing, to creating his own products and selling ad spots on his site…
While many of us will be in awe with each of these items above, all of these goals and numbers are attainable if you continue to grow your blog and brand over time. Keep in mind John Chow has been growing his site, traffic and brand for the best several years, while also learning how to monetize his audience more and more along the way.
But sitting at home and making a blog and building an audience just isn’t enough. John Chow also makes sure he is active in the industry as well. In addition to speaking at various events like Affiliate Summit and Blog World, John also holds his own weekly Dot Com Pho events and meets up with local bloggers in his area as well. All of this compiles everything he has worked on building and just continues to expand his reach.
How and Where John Chow has Made Money Online
Not only does John make an amazing amount of money through is his referral programs and signups, he also gets to attend and speak at various events around the world, and he also got a $120,000 Mercedes-Benz SL550 for free for being one of the top referrals during a recent promotion!
Just like all businesses and opportunities, not everyone will make millions of dollars like John Chow. However, the internet has made the opportunity for starting a business and making money online possible for pretty much anyone. Follow these inspirational stories and get to work on making one of your own!
My First Affiliate Checks and How It All Started!
While I was cleaning up my office, I came across a few copies of some of my first affiliate checks I earned online over twenty years ago! It’s funny when I think back to how you got started, because everything was so different, yet the same. Affiliate marketing was just starting out… companies were taking a chance at a new form of advertising and most didn’t know what to expect. Imagine if the Amazon.com Associates Program had never exist… would affiliate marketing still be as big as it is today?
C’mon everyone, hop into the delorean… and let’s step into the affiliate time machine and go all the way back to 1997!
Back in the 90s… Domains Cost $70!
Before finally spending the big bucks to get my own domain, I spent years on free web hosting sites like Geocities, tripod and mostly through my free AOL accounts. Who didn’t have 20 or 30 free AOL disks sitting around… so I went for a very long time without having to pay for internet access. Getting my own domain several years later was one of the biggest events yet to hit my business, not to mention… one of my first big expenses!
Back in the 90s… CJ was Personable!
Sure, Commission Junction is now one of the largest affiliate networks out there… if still not the largest! However, years before ValueClick even thought about buying them, I was an affiliate and merchant on their network for years. Along with your monthly check, you also received a printed letter from CJ and their President Lex Sisney… and YES!, he actually did sign off on each of these original letters.
Commission Junction Monthly Statement, Signed by President Lex Sisney
Back in the 90s… Checks were smaller, but meant so much more!
No matter what sites you visit today, it’s not hard to come across their affiliate program. Back in the 90s they were far and few… and many companies weren’t even online yet! One of the first companies I worked with was a hosting company called eAds, and they were the equivalent to what ValueClick Media and CasaleMedia are today. They had a small network of banner advertisers that you could place on your website and you would be paid a specific amount per click.
eAds Check: $10.45, September 16, 1998
One of the most lucrative companies I worked was a hosting company called AdGrafix. What was really great about their affiliate program was that they offered residual income on any new web hosting clients you sent them. I used to go into the AOL chat rooms and find people that wanted to get a website for themselves or their companies. I was around 15 or 16 when I started pushing the web hosting programs and they continually made me residual income for years. Affiliate programs now as days just pay a large affiliate commission per signup, to avoid paying nice residuals and keep it for themselves.
AdGrafix: $29.65, October 5, 1998
Back in the 90s… Amazon was King!
Not only was Amazon.com one of the largest and fastest growing sites online, they were also one of the first affiliate programs available. Here is one of my earlier checks from Amazon.com. During the first few years of their associate’s program, you could earn 5-15% on sales, depending if they were books or movies (since that is all they sold at the time). Using FrontPage97 I created hundreds of celebrity pages with Amazon.com book/movie listings to generate sales. The high-quality content from the sites ranked very well in the search engines, bringing in new traffic and sales. Still, at this point, I hadn’t spent any advertising dollars to promote my sites… but I was still able to send Amazon.com a couple hundred thousand dollars in sales.
As my online shopping sites became more popular, so did affiliate marketing. I added new advertisements to the site and found I was starting to make more money from getting signups to CPA offers, then pushing sales for Amazon. I gradually moved everything over to a CPA perspective for affiliate marketing and my main focus.
Amazon.com: $38.72, Jul 30, 1998
Back in the 90s… it was all coming together!
Everyone has to make a start somewhere. Below is one of my first financial reports and as you can see, payments from AdGrafix hosting revenue was one of my biggest money makers. Seeing this type of revenue, while just starting high school, only fueled the fire to excel and make the most out of what I had started. It was only a matter of time before everyone else started to get into the game and more affiliate marketing opportunities became available.
Beginning Monthly Earnings Chart – 1997/1998
Back in the 90s… The Almighty Banner Started it All!
But what really started it all?… it was “The Almighty Banner Ad“. Before affiliate marketing, before affiliate networks, mailing lists, and blogging… there were always banners, and even more importantly, the AOL Web Diner. The Web Diner was a chat room on AOL where webmasters and designers could talk about what’s happening on the internet. Long story short, I made my first dollars online by designing 468×60 banners for people to promote their website. There was no Paypal at the time, so I would receive actual dollar bills in the mail… well, most of time (imagine that, people ripping a 15-year-old kid off!) Nonetheless, the experience was amazing and even in it’s the smallest form (of $1.00), it showed the true potential of the internet and what was to come!
Looking Back, 20+ Years Later…
It’s amazing to look back and see how everything started. I still have my original computers that I worked endless nights on, cranking out new web pages and absorbing as much information as I could. I should load them up again and see what other old school goodies I can find. It’s been an amazing journey, and it’s still just in the beginning phases… I’m still so excited for what the future holds and the fire is still burning to excel that much more!
When did you make your first dollars online and what stories do you have from yesteryear?
How Attrace is Changing Affiliate Marketing with Blockchain Technology
Every once in awhile something new hits the industry and it grabs the attention of audiences around the world. In the business of affiliate marketing we all know the importance of technology and crunching the numbers as much as possible to make a profit — however, the core foundation, basic principles, and how affiliate networks are tracking leads and paying out commissions to affiliates haven’t changed much over the years.
Sure, there are faster payments, more offers, and better tracking technology, but doesn’t it seem like we should be more advanced and have more control over such analytics and data? With so much emphasis on blockchain technology and everyone talking about Bitcoin as being the future of personal and business finance, I think the next question is how blockchain will disrupt the affiliate marketing industry.
That is exactly what Attrace, a decentralized affiliate marketing network, wants to do with their brand new and blockchain technology-driven platform. Today we are going to look at not only how blockchain technology can disrupt the affiliate marketing industry, save merchants money, and also help affiliate marketers earn more than ever before.
The Time for Blockchain Technology is Now
As mentioned earlier, if you’ve heard of the phrase blockchain, you’ve likely heard it associated with cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin. The reason why blockchain is so popular and gaining so much attention, is because it’s changing the way data is transferred among users, makes only payments and transactions after, and also integrates the power of a decentralized internet in the process.
With so many companies using blockchain to protect their data, make transactions safer, and also keep all sides of the party safe and secure, it seems like a perfect fit for affiliate marketing as well.
This is where Attrace comes into play.
Attrace Affiliate Network and Features
With so many opportunities in the world of affiliate marketing, every once in awhile you will come across a new network or tracking platform that takes advantage of the technology around it, and makes a solution that’s better for everyone. Today we can look at a trace and see that they are building a platform with the future in mind, while also catering to the affiliate and advertiser alike.
When you look at the impact of affiliate marketing around the world and see that billions of dollars are generated every year, it’s also important to realize there are hundreds of millions of dollars being paid to affiliate networks in transaction fees. With these basic concepts and financial figures in mind, it would make perfect sense for someone to develop a decentralized platform with minimum transaction costs to the advertisers, and making the withdrawal and payment process to affiliates more seamless.
That is exactly what Attrace has focused their efforts on creating, which we can see through the short explainer video below.
For anyone that has ever signed up to an affiliate network as an advertiser or merchant, you know there are several costs involved — such as the initial setup fee, integration, program management and of course the ongoing transaction costs. If you are paying out several thousands of dollars to your affiliates, you will likely be paying thousands and transaction fees as well.
It’s not just on the merchant or advertiser side that you will find new improvements, features, and benefits, Attrace has built their network with the affiliate marketer in mind as well. As more people continue to use mobile devices and different types of browsers and ways to access the internet, it’s always a question of how well your leads and sales are actually being tracked. Just the smallest percentage of leads getting lost or scraped can be the difference between a successful campaign, or a failed one.
All of these elements and focus points are a top priority for Attrace, while also focusing on the following areas:
- Very low fees
Affiliate Networks charge 10-25% commission. Attrace reduces this to ~0.5%.
- Faster Real Value payments
Instant commission payout instead of waiting for weeks if not months, based on very precise definitions and dynamic scaling.
- Fraud detection
Smart contracts attached to every click/referral cannot be manipulated resulting in all statistics being the absolute truth.
- No more tracking problems
Every individual click/referral will have a unique ID, resulting in the fully reliable tracking of the Publishers’ performance.
- Direct connection between Publishers and Merchants
The Attrace platform enables direct communication between Publishers and Merchants via the advanced messaging board.
- No Merchant restrictions
Long Tail and Emerging Markets acceptance will be based on reputation, not at the discretion of Affiliate Network.
With so many features and benefits in place, it wouldn’t be surprising to see the floodgates open for advertisers and affiliates to join a new platform like Attrace. At the same time, with so many elements in play and the technicalities of the blockchain, this will likely be a transition and work in progress for months and years to come. You can actually see how all of this will come together through the timeline created by Attrace, while also seeing their projections and goals over the next year.
How to Get Started with Attrace Affiliate Network
There are two ways to get started with Attrace affiliate network — the first is to sign up through their telegram group or to take part in their upcoming ICO token sale — which is also featured on their main page.
No matter which of the methods you decide to go after, it will be quite interesting to see how blockchain technology continues to change the way we all use the internet and especially in the world of affiliate marketing.
GDPR Rules, Fines and Compliance – What You Need to Know
As most business people know, taking care of sensitive and personal data of customers is of the utmost importance. Failing to do this could see you getting on the wrong side of your customers and the wrong side of the law – and the penalties can be severe. In the past, the Data Protection Act has provided regulations and guidelines to help businesses to implement data protection policies. However, this is now changing with the introduction of the GDPR.
How will this affect your current business and email marketing efforts?
The biggest question is always what needs to be done next to make sure you are compliant. iContact answers this easy enough with the following statement from the site:
The good news is, if you are already following email marketing best practices and asking your subscribers for permission to join your email lists via a subscription form on your website or requiring the subscriber to tick a box on your ecommerce site (and you can prove this ), you are well on your way to GDPR compliance.
Just like CAN-SPAM came out several years ago, and caused a big fuss, GDPR will likely do the same but everyone (and all of the major solution providers) will make compliance process quite simple and direct.
In order to ensure you do not end up being penalized as a result of failing to implement these new regulations properly, it is important to keep up with the latest developments. Businesses that do not follow these new regulations, which are due to come into play within a matter of weeks, could find themselves facing serious consequences. These regulations are all linked to how data is handled by businesses and it is important for all businesses, large and small, to get to grips with them.
Just like any new laws and regulations that are about to go into place, they have some hefty fines lined up for anyone looking to be made an example of. Imperva has a nice write-up and infographic on the new laws, and their associated fines as well. As you will see from the infographic below, the fines associated with the GDPR are quite high… with maximum fines hitting the $22 million range! In short, prepare your business now, or pay the price later on!
Fortunately, the government has already put a lot of information online about the GDPR, so those with lack of understanding can make sure they do their research to find out what needs to be done. Furthermore, specialist experts from specific industries are being taken on so that businesses can turn to someone with expertise in their specific industry in order to ensure they are following the new regulations to the letter.
One thing to remember is that your business does not have to be located within the EU in order to be tied to these regulations. The regulations also apply to businesses that are not in the EU but that sell products and services to others that are in the EU. Therefore, make sure you do not ignore these regulations just because of the location of your business, as you may find that they also apply to you because of the location of your customers.
How to Prepare for the GDPR Going Live on May 25th, 2018
As fun as it is to read up on all of these new laws and legal jargon, it’s much more exciting to watch a short video that breaks it all down. Not only will you learn more about what GDPR is, but you will also discover eleven things you need to make sure you have in place before May 25th hits and the law goes into effect.
An even better and more detailed resource on how to keep your business safe and compliant is this Forbes article on how the GDPR will affect advertising and e-commerce. With nearly all websites, blogs, and online businesses collecting emails, data, or placing cookies on their visitor’s computers, this is something we all need to be aware of.
How to Stay Up to Date with the Latest GDPR News
Since the new regulations are only just coming in, there may be some teething problems to begin with. This means that there is a chance there could be some changes and adaptations to begin with. In order to ensure you continue to implement the regulations properly, you should keep on top of any chances and developments. You can also hire the services of experts to help you get to grips with the GDPR as well as to help keep you informed as and when any changes are made.
With the introduction of the new regulations, all countries within the EU can benefit from the same data protection laws, which can help to make things much fairer and far easier to understand. Having different sets of rules from one EU country to another could be confusing and frustrating for both customers and businesses. Experts believe that these new regulations will help make things far easier to manage and understand as well as ensuring fairness across all EU countries.
However… only time will tell, and it will be interesting to see how the next few months play out after GDPR goes into affect.
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