– So imagine getting
your Bachelor's degree and then telling your parents that your full-time profession is a blogger. What do you think their response would be? – Is that my iPad? Dad! Put that down! No! – Now in my defense, I didn't
start off as a blogger. I actually started off
as a financial advisor right out of college and that's what I did for a majority of my career. And then one day, I read this article that talked about if you really wanna stand
out as a financial advisor, you need to start a blog, but the only thing at that time was I didn't even know what a blog was.
See, I thought having a
blog was the same thing like having a Myspace account. You remember Myspace, right? ♪ Never gonna give you up ♪ Or it was broadcasting to the world how awesome your latest meal was. – Once it hits your lips, it's so good! – And yet, despite the
ignorance that I have about what blogging is and how it worked, I was still determined to start and get the best financial planner blog going. And after I started my blog,
goodfinancialcents.com, something funny happened. I started to network with
other personal finance bloggers and these were individuals, these were of men and women
that were doing it on the side while they were still
working their full-time gigs and I learned you could actually
make money from your blog. And you have to remember, I'm still trying to figure out how the internet worked at this point. (banging) So I am pretty skeptical that you could actually make money from
a blog, make money online. Like, they all feel
like some sort of scam. – You'll have the option of choosing from several of our completely
unwarranted rip-offs, including internet speeds up
to 200 times slower than Korea at twice the price, TV packages
with over 500 channels, 90% of which you can't view, and we guarantee a
plethora of hidden fees.
– And then something
even crazier happened. One of those personal finance bloggers that I connected with, we
ended up talking on the phone and he's actually a very
good friend to this day. And in that phone discussion,
he was very open, very candid, and he revealed how much he
was making from his blog. And this is a phone call, this is one of those memories in your life that you'll never forget, that I will never forget because he revealed how much he was making. I remember exactly where I was because I was driving in my car and he shared that he was making between
$30,000 to $40,000 from his blog. Now, for many people, that
is a good annual wage. I mean, to make 40 grand a
year, I mean it's not a lot, but from something that
is on the internet, I was blown away, but that
wasn't how the story ended.
Because he wasn't making
$30,000 to $40,000 a year from his blog, no, no, no. ♪ No, no, no, no ♪ He was making $30,000 to $40,000 a month. $30,000 to $40,000 a month from a website! – Oh my God! Wow! – And I remember when he told me and I heard those numbers because I was driving in my car and
I almost ran off the road. I was blown away that you could make that much money from a blog. So at this time, I'm already
writing and I'm publishing and I'm editing and I am
still cranking out content, but after this phone conversation, that that's where I started to do even more research on
how to monetize a blog.
So I started to familiarize myself with ads and AdSense and
also affiliate marketing. I also then learned how sales funnels work and digital product and that began an even more fun journey where I started to make some real money from my blog. And today, what I wanted to share were what are my top takeaways, what were some of the big
lessons that I learned that could also help you make your first $1,000 a month from your blog. Let's find out what these are right now.
What's going on y'all? Welcome back to the
channel Wealth Hacker Labs. I'm your gracious host Jeff Rose and this is the channel
dedicated to teaching you new ways to grow wealth that is not taught to you in schools
or by your parents. But as a financial planner
that is starting a blog to get new clients and that was the only reason that I started the blog to learn that I can start making money and not just a couple
hundred dollars on the side, no, to actually make
thousands and thousands of dollars on the side. Like, this is something
that I was very, very interested to understand. So the first big takeaway that I learned and you also need to know
is that S.E.O matters. And if you don't know was S.E.O
is, feel free to Google it, but all it stands for is
search engine optimization.
If you're not familiar with
what S.E.O is and how it works, just think about going to Google and typing something in the search engine. So for example, if you wanna type in
the cutest puppies ever, you might find something like this. – [Man] Who's the cutest puppies? Who's the cutest puppies? – And there are a lot of
marketing experts right now that would argue that S.E.O doesn't matter in this day and age because of all different social media
platforms that exist 'cause you got Facebook,
you got Instagram, you got Snapchat,
TikTok, all of the above. I feel like I'm forgetting one. Oh, that's right, YouTube, and if you haven't subscribed yet, go ahead and take care of
that and while you're there, go ahead and smash that like button.
– [Button] Siri says I like. – But S.E.O does matter and
even though in the beginning I didn't really understand
how S.E.O worked or even how to implement it effectively, I did know was that if
somebody went to Google, typed in my name, Jeff
Rose, I wanted to be found. 'Cause before I started the blog, if you went to Google and
typed in my name, Jeff Rose, you didn't find me. You found Jeff Rose the superintendent, Jeff Rose the golf shirt polo maker and also Jeff Rose, the actor. And I know that I'm a pretty
good actor, but that isn't me. – It all begins with you smashing the like button for the YouTube algorithm. – What's going on guys? It's Gram here. Be sure to smash that like
button for the YouTube algorithm. (bell rings) Now obviously, ranking for
the cutest puppies ever wasn't going to get me any new clients, so what I wanted to rank
for was my name, Jeff Rose. I finally achieved my goal of
being discovered on Google, but then it hit me.
(man laughs) If somebody was wanting to
hire a financial advisor and they didn't know me, they're not gonna be typing in Jeff Rose. So that began a process of attempting to rank for that keyword,
which I finally did. And even at the time of this recording, even though I am no longer
a practicing advisor, even thought I no longer reside
in the state of Illinois, if you go to Google right now and type in financial planner
Illinois, you will find me.
You'll actually find me
on more than one page. I think it's worth mentioning, especially if you ware a new blogger and you don't think you have what it takes to rank for anything, I was in this forum with other
personal finance bloggers and I was sharing how my goal was to rank for financial planner Illinois. Well, I was then contacted
directly by this S.E.O expert. You notice the air quotes, right? And this S.E.O expert was so
kind to pass on his wisdom, letting me know that I would
never rank for this keyword because it was just too competitive because of all the investment firms in the state of Illinois,
especially up in Chicago, it was just too competitive. (yelling) Did I mention that I love when somebody tells me that I can't do something? Like, come on and bring it. – Bring 'em all on! – As I previously shared, not only do I rank for that keyword, and I still rank for that keyword, but I was actually able
to rank for that keyword in less than 90 days.
Thank you S.E.O expert. – Suck on it, Trebek. (audience laughs) Suck it long and suck it hard. – After I was ranking for
financial planner Illinois, I started to ask myself, what other keywords or phrases would potential clients go to
Google to search for? So I started writing articles
about 401K rollovers, how much to save for your
kids' college education, how to invest for $1,000,
$10,000, $100,000, and of course the obvious, why In-N-Out Burger is
the greatest burger ever. Come on now, if you don't
love In-N-Out Burger, then you might as well unsubscribe now because we can't be friends.
Sorry. And that was my content
strategy going forward, thinking about those keywords that perspective clients would search for, or I would go and answer questions that existing clients already have. So it was never an issue or
running out of content ideas. The issue was not having enough time to write enough blog posts for all the content ideas that I had. So the second thing that I
learned and you'll learn too, and this one is a hard one
to accept, but no one cares. – Don't care. Don't care. – Nobody cares that you started a blog. – Still don't care. – Nobody cares that you
wrote a brand new blog post that took you two weeks to write. – [Man] What'd you say? I just wanna know what you said. – I don't care! – By the way, if it takes you two weeks
to write a blog post, then you might think about
doing something else. I shared this in a previous video where I make the case that starting a blog is better and more worthwhile
than getting your MBA, but just because you build it doesn't mean that they will come.
– [Voice] If you build it, he will come. – I remember getting so excited after I would get done hitting
publish on this blog post that I put so much time and energy in 'cause it was so clever
and so well-written only to find out that nobody read it. Crickets. (crickets chirp) So I figured out to get people to care, to get people to take notice
of what I was doing on my site, I had to start guest
writing for other blogs. I was reaching out to these other personal finance bloggers that I connected in in these forums and online and started writing articles, started writing blog
posts for their audiences and that's when I finally
started to have new eyeballs, new readers coming to my blog and checking out what was going on. And that's when I started to
rank for even more keywords, more search terms in Google. And then I started to
get even more traffic and when you have traffic,
when you have new eyeballs, new readers coming to your site, that is when you can start making money.
Now, in the beginning, once again, I didn't even know how to do S.E.O, so I definitely didn't know
how to make money blogging. Now, the easiest thing to
do for most new bloggers is adding Google AdSense to your site. If you're not familiar with
Google AdSense, I promise you, you have seen Google ads
any time you do a search. When you are searching for
those cute adorable puppies. – [Man] Who's the cutest puppies? – At the top of your search, you're going to see advertisements. Those are companies that
are paying to be placed whenever you are typing
something into Google, the reason that many new bloggers start off with Google
AdSense because it's so easy.
Once you sign up for your free account, you log in, you copy the
code that Google provides and you paste that into
your website or blog. And based on the content of your site, Google will scan your site, see what you're writing about,
what you're blogging about and then they will assign the proper advertisers to be placed on your site. You don't even have to
find the advertisers. Google will scan your website, they will scan the text to see what are you writing about,
what are you blogging about and then they will
match up the advertisers that want to get in
front of your audience. Now the thing with Google AdSense, since it is so easy to use, don't expect to make a
lot of money overnight. It's going to take time. It took several months where I was finally making $10 to $20, $40 a month. I finally was issued my first check and it was a whopping $152.91. And while yes, that $152
was money in the bank, it definitely didn't break the bank, but over time as I kept writing, kept publishing new content, that Google AdSense
revenue started to grow and it went from $152 on up
to a couple hundred dollars and then $500 and $1,000.
Then eventually, I was
able to make almost $5,000 in one month. And after Google AdSense, I learned more about affiliate marketing and I began promoting
affiliates that I used, that I trusted and I felt comfortable recommending to my audience. One of the first affiliates
that I partnered with was with Scottrade. Now, Scottrade does not
exist today, but at the time, they were one of the premier
online investment firms. In the beginning, I wasn't
comfortable recommending Scottrade just because I didn't have any experience with them. Yes, they had outstanding reviews and excellent customer service, but if I'm going to recommend
something to somebody else, I want to have some experience with them. So the next logical step was to open an account with Scottrade to see with my own eyes how it worked, how was their customer service, what was it like to open
an account with them and invest for the first time. And that's when it got fun because I got a phone call from the
closest Scottrade location.
It was their branch manager and I was explaining to them how I was
actually a financial planner, but I had a financial planning blog and wanted to write about Scottrade and I don't think they really
understood what was going on, but I got to see
firsthand what was it like to be a Scottrade client. And that was the same process that I did with other affiliates. I would open accounts with
them to see what was it like.
So I opened accounts with LendingClub, TradeKing, Fundrise, Prosper, there were so many different companies that I experienced firsthand so that I could write from my personal
experience what was it like. So when we added affiliates to the already existing Google AdSense revenue that was still bringing in money, we went from making that $5,000 a month to now we're making $10,000, $20,000, started making that $40,000 a month that my friend was making on his site.
It's important to mention one of the main reasons why my blog was making so much with Google AdSense and why we were able to make that
$10,000 to $20,000 and more with affiliate marketing is because of the niche that my site is in. Being in the personal finance space where we're talking about
investing and savings accounts, you've got your Wall Street firms, you've got your big
banks and these companies are willing to pay a lot of
money in advertising dollars.
So does that mean that
you have to write about money to make money blogging? And the answer is you don't. If you want to write about
cute stinking puppies, then you go ahead and do that,
but just know if you do that, you're not going to make as much money as another site in the personal
finance or investing niche. The other big lesson that I learned, and this was a strategy
that really, really helped catapult my blog into the crazy traffic numbers that I was getting. For a relatively new blog, I went from zero views in a month to getting over 100,000
unique visitors to my site.
And once again, I didn't know
what I was doing S.E.O wise, so the fact that I was able to
do that is pretty outstanding and one of the main ways I did that, I refer to as the crystal ball method. – Hold my hand, hold my hand. – What do you see?
– Hold my hand. – I see something now. Yes I do. (woman yells) – Now I wish I could say that this was a strategy that I executed
with concise precision, but the truth is I just got kind of lucky. Since I was a financial planner and in the financial services
industry, going back in 2010, I knew that there was an
event getting ready to happen that was going to be a big deal. See, prior to 2010, you
couldn't execute what is called a Roth IRA conversion if
you made too much money, but in 2010, the IRS was
going to do away with this income restriction so that
anybody and everybody, didn't matter how much you made, you could execute the Roth IRA conversion.
And I had a suspicion because I had my secret crystal ball underneath my desk. No, I didn't. But I thought, you know what, this is something that people are going to want to know about come 2010. So I actually wrote the
article talking about the Roth IRA conversion
in the beginning of 2009, so by the time January of 2010 came along, when you went to Google and
typed in Roth IRA conversion, you didn't find Fidelity,
you didn't find Vanguard, you didn't find Investopedia at the top of the search engines. Oh no. You found Jeff Rose of
Good Financial Cents. Can I get a holla or what? Now I remember logging into
my Google analytics account and seeing all the traffic
that was coming in. And guess what else came in? Bigger AdSense checks. The only way that you can
really execute this strategy and do it well is that you have to be immersed in whatever niche or topic that you are blogging about.
don't come around a lot, but if you can take advantage and be one of the first to publish on this topic, then you, yes you, can
even outrank some of the biggest competitors in your space. Other examples of the crystal ball method, especially in my space,
in the investing space, is publishing any content that has to do with a big IPO that is coming up. For example, I remember
writing about the Facebook IPO and the Twitter IPO. Any big IPO, if you can
publish any information on that a few months before it actually happens and then you go back
and update that content as more news, more information comes out, then you also have a
chance to take advantage of that crystal ball method. All right, the last big takeaway, and this may be hard for many of you, especially if you suffer
from Imposter Syndrome. – You're not an imposter. You just have Imposter Syndrome. It happens all the time.
– But whenever you are producing content, you have to think of
yourself as the authority or as the expert. And I'm sure many of you are
thinking that, yeah Jeff, that's easy for you to say because you were a financial planner, so it was easy for you to
be an expert in your space, and I get it, that makes complete sense, but you have to realize
in the online space that being an expert doesn't
mean that you went to school, that you got an MBA, that
you have a certification in whatever you are writing about. Being an expert just means that you are one or two steps ahead of somebody else that is looking for information on whatever topic that
you are blogging about. Another way to become an authority or the authority on your site is offering different types of media
that people can download or consume your content. I mentioned earlier that
whenever we added affiliates and started incorporating
affiliate marketing into the site how we saw our monthly revenues
What I didn't mention was
one of the main reasons we were able to be so effective with that is that we just didn't offer blog content on different affiliates. So going back to that Scottrade example. Yes, we had a blog post that talked about the pros and cons of investing and opening an account with Scottrade, but I also had YouTube
videos where I showed behind the scenes, what it looked like to open
an account with Scottrade, how to invest with Scottrade, how my Scottrade portfolio
performed over a period of time. Later on, we introduced the
Good Financial Cents podcast where guess what? I was talking about
investing with Scottrade and the other affiliates
that we offered on the site.
'Cause here's the thing, Google really didn't care that I was a financial planner
talking about Scottrade. What they did care about was offering different types of
content, YouTube videos, which conveniently enough
is also owned by Google. Because I know several
personal finance bloggers that have sold their sites
for millions of dollars, or those that still own their sites are making several hundred
thousand dollars a month and the only reason is because whatever topic that they are writing about, any topic that they are covering, they have become the expert, the authority because they have wrote and addressed every single question, every single concern
that somebody may have.
And that really is the missing link of going from making a couple
thousand dollars a month to making a ton of money. But the cool thing is that you don't have to become the expert overnight. It can take time and that's
what I love about blogging. So at this point in time, you're probably wondering, Jeff, can I really, really do this? Is this a possibility? Let me tell you, it is if
you have some patience, if you have some determination. And just to help you out,
just to give you a jumpstart, I created this free email challenge called the Make $1K Challenge and you can go to make1kchallenge.com. I'll have a link in the description that you can go check it out. With this challenge, we
will show you step by step how to get your blog set up and publish your first blog post and also, how to make your first,
you guessed it, $1,000. And once again, this is a free challenge. The link is in the
description or you can go to make1kchallenge.com. All right y'all, I hope
you enjoyed this video.
I hope that you at least
have some interest, some excitement about blogging. I'll tell you what, it
is something that has literally changed my life,
it has rocked my world. I love it so much and I hope you do too. And if you do like this video, go ahead and give that like
and subscribe if you haven't. All right y'all, this is
Jeff Rose reminding you that it's your money,
it's your life and only you can make it awesome. 'Til next time..