Why Write an eBook?

It’s not true that everything that has been said has already been written. Since that unfortunate axiom came into use, the whole universe has changed. Technology has changed, ideas have changed, and the mindsets of entire nations have changed.

The fact is that this is the perfect time to write an ebook. What the publishing industry needs are people who can tap into the world as it is today – innovative thinkers who can make the leap into the new millennium and figure out how to solve old problems in a new way. Ebooks are a new and powerful tool for original thinkers with fresh ideas to disseminate information to the millions of people who are struggling to figure out how to do a plethora of different things.

Let’s say you already have a brilliant idea, and the knowledge to back it up that will enable you to write an exceptional ebook. You may be sitting at your computer staring at a blank screen wondering, “Why? Why should I go through all the trouble of writing my ebook when it’s so impossible to get anything published these days?

Well, let me assure you that publishing an ebook is entirely different than publishing a book in print. Let’s look at the specifics of how the print and cyber publishing industry differ, and the many reasons why you should take the plunge and get your fingers tapping across those keyboards!

Submitting a print book to conventional publishing houses or to agents is similar to wearing a hair shirt 24/7. No matter how good your book actually is, or how many critique services and mentor writers have told you that “you’ve got what it takes,” your submitted manuscript keeps coming back to you as if it is a boomerang instead of a valuable mine of information.

Perhaps, in desperation, you’ve checked out self-publishing and found out just how expensive a venture it can be. Most “vanity presses” require minimal print runs of at least 500 copies, and even that amount will cost you thousands of dollars. Some presses’ minimal run starts at 1,000 to 2,000 copies. And that’s just for the printing and binding. Add in distribution, shipping, and promotional costs and – well, you do the math. Even if you wanted to go this route, you may not have that kind of money to risk.

Let’s say you already have an Internet business with a quality website and a quality product. An ebook is one of the most powerful ways to promote your business while educating people with the knowledge you already possess as a business owner of a specific product or service.

For example, let’s say that you’ve spent the last twenty-five years growing and training bonsai trees, and now you’re ready to share your knowledge and experience. An ebook is the perfect way to reach the largest audience of bonsai enthusiasts.

Ebooks will not only promote your business – they will help you make a name for yourself and your company, and establish you as an expert in your field. You may even find that you have enough to say to warrant a series of ebooks. Specific businesses are complicated and often require the different aspects to be divided in order for the reader to get the full story.

Perhaps your goals are more finely tuned in terms of the ebook scene. You may want to build a whole business around writing and publishing ebooks. Essentially, you want to start an e-business. You are thinking of setting up a website to promote and market your ebooks. Maybe you’re even thinking of producing an ezine.

One of the most prevalent reasons people read ebooks is to find information about how to turn their Internet businesses into a profit-making machine. And these people are looking to the writers of ebooks to provide them with new ideas and strategies because writers of ebooks are usually people who understand the new cyberspace world we now live in. Ebook writers are experts in Internet marketing campaigns and the strategies of promoting and distributing ebooks. The cyberspace community needs its ebooks to be successful so that more and more ebooks will be written.

You may want to create affiliate programs that will also market your ebook. Affiliates can be people or businesses worldwide that will all be working to sell your ebooks. Think about this? Do you see a formula for success here?

Figure out what your subject matter is, and then narrow it down. Your goal is to aim for specificity. Research what’s out there already, and try to find a void that your ebook might fill.

What about an ebook about a wedding cake business? Or an ebook about caring for elderly pets? How about the fine points of collecting ancient pottery?

You don’t have to have three masters degrees to write about your subject. People need advice that is easy to read and easily understood. Parents need advice for dealing with their teenagers. College students need to learn good study skills – quickly. The possibilities are endless.

After you’ve writtten your ebook

Getting your ebook out is going to be your focus once you’ve finished writing it, just as it is with print books. People will hesitate to buy any book from an author they’ve never heard of. Wouldn’t you?

The answer is simple: give it away! You will see profits in the form of promoting your own business and getting your name out. You will find affiliates who will ask you to place their links within your ebook, and these affiliates will in turn go out and make your name known. Almost every single famous ebook author has started out this way.

Another powerful tool to attract people to your ebook is to make it interactive. Invent something for them to do within the book rather than just producing pages that contain static text. Let your readers fill out questionnaires, forms, even crossword puzzles geared to testing their knowledge on a particular subject. Have your readers hit a link that will allow them to recommend your book to their friends and associates. Or include an actual order form so at the end of their reading journey, they can eagerly buy your product.

When people interact with books, they become a part of the world of that book. The fact is just as true for books in print as it is for ebooks.

That’s why ebooks are so essential. Not only do they provide a forum for people to learn and make sense of their own thoughts, but they can also serve to promote your business at the same time.

Making profit on the Internet

There are so many ways to make profit on the Internet that you would need a complete e-book for it, and not a tiny article as this one. But lack of space should never deter one from sharing some good news. Let us see how the Internet can be used to make some good cash online. One totally fail-proof method to draw profits from the Net is to use pay-per-click to generate adsense income. This method is so simple to understand and easy to operate that absolutely anyone can do it.

In order to get a good and continuous income flow from the adsense ads, you will need to use a form of traffic arbitrage in combination of some good but low cost keywords and the bid on the different pay-per-click search engines – like Google. In order to have the system fail proof you will have to work initially to plug in any imbalances that may exist. You must take care about the following:

1. Keywords: You will need to choose exceptionally apt keywords, which will be high paying. For this you should be tuned in on what is the right combination and you should be able to attract the right type of crowd to your website. You will payment for PPC should be justified vis-à-vis the adsense ad, or you will not make money. Your keywords should attract sufficient traffic to attract enough traffic for you to make a neat income.

2. Content: You have to ensure that the ads and the content are highly relevant to the visitors or you will not attract them to click on your ad. You should be aware that when you are buying keywords you are actually purchasing a pass for your traffic. Hence, unless the content and the ad are complementary, you will not be able to raise any profit. This is one element that is taken for granted by most first-timers causing them loses where they could have made profit.

3. Cheaper keywords: Google is the best today – true. But they are not the only ones in the market. If you are functioning on a shoestring budget, you can definitely try out some other search engines. Some of the choices you can have are Brainfox, findwhat, etc. Try them out.

4. Track you ads: It is extremely wise to keep a check on how your money flows by tracking your advertising. In order to repair damages in time, you will need to know where and when you are hitting the wrong buttons. This information will be available for you only when you keep track of your ads with continuous tracking. For this purpose you may use the services of professional tracking agencies. This may be a bit costly but it is worth the effort. Another way to keep track is to set up a separate landing-page for each of your sources. In this way your own website can give you the requisite statistics and you can see clearly which search engine gives you the best results. This method can be very good if set up correctly. You will have to ensure that the feeder articles (pages) which propagate free traffic combine well with the PPC traffic so you can get a low per-visitor cost in the long run.

5. SEO: You must have feeder pages set up so you come up high on the organic searches. When the organic searches rank you high you are likely to attract heavy free traffic. What is he best part here is that as you move up on rank in the organic search, the ppc also will move up and hence earn you better profit.

Earning profit with adsense is a piece of cake once you have all things set in place. It is very important though, to achieve the right balance between the use of keywords and the ppc. In order to be on the safe side, a periodic if not regular tracking should be done and according to the findings, the required fine tunings should be done. Unless this is done, you will not be able to stop the losses when they occur, nor will be able to raise your profits when the market is ripe for it.

Making money over the internet: A 5 step formula

Getting rich is the dream of many. And internet is a good medium to get rich fast. But one have to do a great deal of homework and consistent effort to get rich. In this short exposure I will outline the five step procedure to make money using internet.

Step1. Have a basic knowledge about internet.

Internet is a vibrant medium. It is also highly dynamic and evolving. What is selling today may be considered garbage tomorrow. So anybody planning to do an internet business should have a basic knowledge about internet, its evolving trends and the possibilities.

Step2: Get a business idea:

If you think that you have ingenuity, originality and enough time, you can workout your own business idea. Or if you are ready to research a little you can get enough articles discussing original business ideas. If you are a butterfly on the internet, you can adapt the idea from a successful business site (of course without infringing the intellectual property rights) and make your own variations of it. If you are still lazier you can approach a consultant for the purpose. The important thing is that you must have an idea.

Step3: Work out the idea to minute detail.

An abstract idea like “I should have a site selling books” will not fetch you money. So many things have to be decided upon. What content you should have on the site, how you interact with customers, how do you prevent frauds, how do you advertise your site and so on. Another very important thing is the user interface .In all these things a consultant may be of help to you, but if you want to learn and innovate he may be a hindrance too. This phase is a little time consuming, but it lets you weave dreams about your business. Also it is advised to document your design dreams. because these forms the blueprint of your business.

Step4. Implement the business:

Once you have the complete idea of a web business you must start implementing it. If your site permits you can go for an incremental implementation, starting with a minimum set of features and adding new features gradually. This will help you to start earning from an early stage. The advertisement can go side by side. In many phases you may have to get external help or advice.

Step5 Constantly improvise.

As I have said earlier trends in internet are changing at a rapid phase and if you do not make changes in the interface and working style of your site will not be liked by people. So you must constantly watch competing or similar sites and evolve your site over time. The feedback from the users is a good indicator in this regard. Also you must be willing to diversify ,expand and even divert your business according to market forces and user needs.

I would like to get your feedback regarding this article. Please feel free to mail me your opinions.

‘Social Bookmarking’ As An Aggressive and Acceptable Blog Marketing Tactic

Social bookmarking websites are becoming more and more popular. They allow you to save bookmarks online and Tag/Categorize them with keywords instead of saving them as bookmarks in the favorite’s list of yourbrowser. This is particularly useful when your browser based bookmarks have become unwieldy. It’s also help since you can access your bookmarks from any computer where you have an internet connection.

I have compiled a list of Social Bookmarking websites from a number of sources. You can find it here: http://www.blogmarketingtactics.com/social-bookmarking/social-bookmarking-top-links.html

Once you have bookmarked them, you can view them, sort them by category/keyword as well as see links from others that have been categorized like yours.

You also establish RSS feeds for each category (tag) that you ‘subscribe’ to. This alerts you to new links in your areas of interest. Your bookmark collection/RSS Feed becomes viewable to others who can also copy your bookmarks to their own collection. So now you can aggressively promote your RSS feed to the RSS Directories and Search engines, syndicate them and make them available to a much wider audience.

Social bookmarking sites also help you to meet other people who are interested in the same topics you are and who may also have knowledge of web resources that you don’t.

On Social Bookmarking sites, you first create an account. Then you bookmark interesting and useful things in the area of your interest or expertise. By doing so you create a useful Feed. Once you’ve done that you intermittently, (or aggressively), add useful and interesting items, (that could use additional exposure), from your own content. Make an honest effort to contribute USEFUL information and links. This is all about sharing and exposure. Done properly, you can be as aggressive as you want to be about sharing information. You can share your blog(s), links to your informational/resource sites etc. Think about the fact that when you share links to other’s resources, you’re also effectively promoting their content as well.

This is a way you can aggressively and ethically promote your content and the content of others. I personally have hundreds of gigabytes of my own information and information of others, connected to my notebook. In the final analysis, it’s doing me no good what-so-ever just sitting there. But by organizing it, online, I can help myself, (getting organized, getting my content exposed, etc.) and help others at the same time.

If you spice up your feed with too much sales and marketing related or self promotional stuff, people can and will easily drop their subscription to your feed. And instead of gaining good will and doing a service to the internet community you could get labeled as a spammer and suffer the consequences.

So while being aggressive is possible and acceptable, being careful to consider the best interest of the community is certainly warranted.

Balancing being ethical and providing a useful service to others with promoting your own content enables you to be as aggressive as you like. But remember, in the final analysis, others will make the decision on whether it’s ethical and useful or spam.

“One Niche You’re Rich”

Have you found yourself wondering why you are overwhelmed? There is so much material on the Internet regarding Internet marketing. If a person tries to digest all of it at one time, they will will experience a bad case of online marketing indigestion. This is not a good feeling to have. I have had these feelings before as well.

The solution to this issue is to narrow your focus on one niche. You see it is much easier to become an expert in one area rather than two or more areas. I have made a decision to devote my time to making money on the Internet. There are countless ways to make money in this world today. You can make money in real estate, the stock market, by owning your own offline business and in numerous other ways. But the people who really do well in this world financially are known primarily for one thing. Bill Gates in known for Microsoft. Warren Buffett is known as a stock expert. Donald Trump is known for real estate. I am sure that they have other things that they focus on now but they are known as being experts in a certain field. What do you focus on? Many things or one thing? I am willing to bet that if your answer is many you are in a state of Internet marketing disconbobulation. Find something you like doing and become an expert at it. The trick is to find something you like doing that is profitable financiallly. This is the secret to making money on the net.

If there is a market for your product, you can sell it. Do a search on google and see how many results your area of focus will bring up. If you use keywords, you will get better results. The more targeted the results the better. It is easy to develop a product when you are an expert in that area because you know something that your buyers don’t. You are the expert and they are not. They will pay large sums of money to acquire your expertise.

As marketers we must understand that our time is extremely valuable and the more we focus on too many things, the more time that is wasted. This time could be better spent focusing on one niche. It takes time to learn what your niche market wants. After you learn what they want, give the people what they desire. If your child wants a piece of pizza and you give them fish that would cause sadness in their hearts. They may cry and be upset with you. In the same way, if you give your target market something different then what they are asking for they will remove themselves from your list or no longer associate with you.

So use your time wisely and learn what your target market wants. Once you have determined what they want, if you do not already have a product created to meet their needs create one. Remember what they have told you and use the desires of their hearts as your blueprint to create an excellent information product.

Your job as the expert is to provide the answers to the questions that your target market is asking. You answer their questions with your products and you will be seen as an expert by them. You can also become qualified as an expert by creating a blog about your niche market. You can have your readers post their questions on your blog. Answer their questions on your blog and they will also begin to view you in a different light. This will prove to them that you care about what they have to say. People buy more easily when they trust the person they are buying from. A blog is a great way to create an atmoshpere of trust. You can also build a great deal of rapport with your market in this way as well. You can get to know your market on your blog and they can get to know you. An excellent method to implement to accomplish this is simply to be open with your life. Talk about your family and life on the blog and you will find that your market is more likely to talk about their family.

You now have a number of concepts to implement in your Internet business right now. The key is to go out and do them. You will be greatly rewarded if you do. One niche can indeed make you rich.

Much Continued Success,

The creator of “The Online Treasure Box”

“An Internet Marketing Seed”

Dear Fellow Internet Marketer,

It is vital to create a product that will allow you to eventually expand into other markets. The goal is for the people who initiallly buy your product to also buy your next products. Since you have proven that you can be trusted by delivering a product to your clients they love it should be much easier to obtain their business when your new item hits the online marketplace. We need to understand a seed is truly important indeed. You need to see your first product as that seed.

You see this is about creating an Internet marketing kingdom, a virtual empire of products that all start with one tiny seed that is planted in the fertile soil of those hearts that are eager for your particular product. For example, I am in the process of creating a set of onlline videos where I teach students the various techniques needed to speak English. My area of expertise lies in the field of ESL(English as a second language) of which I have been blessed to have over 10 years of experience teaching to adult learners. My target market would be foreign adults who wish to learn English via video. I realize though that if I wish to branch out and sell different yet similar products later I will have to pick a product that these learners would also enjoy. This led me to recall the great end of the semester food parties in the classes that I taught where both myself and my students brought in dishes from other countries that many enjoyed. Now I know that my second product launched will be an esl cookbook with recipes submitted from actual students. The cookbook will be sold to other esl students online. Branching out even further, a cooking forum would be established as well as an online cooking class with graduates of my esl video courses eventually teaching the course. It is amazing to see how all this began from the planting of one little seed. The online esl videos seed grew to become a cookbook, an online cooking school and a cooking forum. As we all know marketing is a numbers game and the bigger number of people you have on your marketing list the better your chance of survival and dominance.

Think about your online marketing seed before you plant it. You want to plant something that will grow into something huge. When you look into the jungle you see an incredible array of trees. That is what you should want your seed to turn into. The trees in your Internet jungle will be represented by the vast amount of names on your email list who want your first and additional products. The product you create should also appeal to as many people as possible. I know those who may not be interested in esl may be interested in cooking and vice versa. I could use the cooking bait to reel in the esl fish and use the esl bait to reel in those who love cooking. When your Internet marketing seed is sown you will reap the harvest of personal freedom. This translates into having the freedom to spend time doing what is really important. Even though I am blessed to be doing well working from my home right now, my goal is to create an online marketing kingdom. God is of course the king, I am the king, my wife is the queen and my daughter is the princess. I plan to give my little girl the choice to attend college or as the princess of the family become the boss while the queen and I enjoy our travels. It all starts with that tiny Internet marketing seed. The Bible talks about having the faith of a mustard seed and what can happen if we have just a bit of faith. We have to have dreams, big dreams and seeing those dreams become realities is quite inspirational and shows that this Internet marketing thing is real. No one in your circle of naysayers can argue with your results unless they choose to be up against the truth of your success.

Much Continued Success,

The creator of “The Online Treasure Box”

$60,000 Mugging

I was referred to a prospective client recently that had their website redesigned. They paid $60,000 for a site that really does nothing for them. It is a simple brochure site that provides visitors nothing and it certainly does nothing to convert traffic into sales. Since all their budget went to design, they have no money left over to properly market the site. Mistake #1, don’t pay $60,000 for a branding exercise.

A corporate website is about supporting the business. The beauty of the Internet is there is no guessing. You can measure pretty much anything. What are you trying to accomplish? Increase traffic? Generate leads? Increase sales? If it is yes to one of these questions, then a $60,000 investment should get you another $600,00 to your bottom-line? Can a brochure site deliver a 80-95% ROI?

Web design is a commodity today. The cost of design should represent about 25% of your total spend. Design costs are competitive today, so spending more than you have to should be the last thing you do. There are excellent open source Content Management Systems (CMS) that give you the power to manage your own content. The cost of the software is $0 to you. We recommend using either Plone or Joomla. Both of these platforms provide you with Web 2.0 compliant back-end at low cost for setup and maintenance.

The value in web design is working with companies that can properly market what you do. To properly market the site, you should be spending 10-12x what you should spend in design. So, it is possible to get a Web 2.0 website at an affordable cost. If you are a small company that is spending $4,000-$8,000 on a basic website, you should plan over 12 months to spend an additional $30,000-$80,000 on marketing. The dollars spent on marketing brings the traffic to the site. Simple rule, more traffic through the front door means more business.

Unlike other advertising, you can control your spend and measure your ROI pretty quickly. You can turn your marketing dollars on and off depending on the performance, it is all measurable.

DeFabis Photography is an example of a client that went through the redesign process. We built a Search Engine Friendly website that allows him to manage content on the site. Prior to working with us, his website was not listed in the top 100 on Google for the popular keywords. Since working with us, his visitors and page views have increased. But most important, he has doubled his bookings from this time last year. And, he did not spend $60,000 on his web design.

If you need help in evaluating a prospective vendor, here are some question that may help you understand their knowledge:

1. How do capture visitor traffic off the Internet? Can you track their movement through my site? If so, how?

2. How do manage pay per click advertising dollars to ensure I am maximizing my spend and not wasting money?

3. How do you measure whether my site is friendly to my users?

4. How many page views would you estimate my site would get to determine the right level of hosting?

5. What things will you need to change on my website? What things can I change on my own?

6. If I want to change the look, does it require changes to the backend scripting on the site?

7. What will it take to add a new page to match an ad we are running to the new site? For instance, I want to advertise a special and build a page specific for it, what will it take for us to do this?

8. What do you anticipate the average cost per lead for the website to be?

9. Who owns the source code to the site?

So, think about your objectives. Think about what you want to accomplish and spend your money according to the results you want to achieve. A pretty website just does not generate the type of results you should and can get using the Internet. Don’t get mugged for $60,000. It’s bad for your business.

 3 Simple Steps For Newbies To Start In Affiliate Marketing

Affiliate marketing is an arrangement between an online merchant and affiliate, in which the affiliate earns a commission for generating sales, leads and/or clicks for the merchant’s web site.

Affiliate marketing works in a win-win situation for the merchant and the affiliate. The merchant gains opportunities to advertise his products for free to a larger market which will increase his sales. The more hard-working affiliates he gets, the more sales he can expect. By getting affiliates to market his products and services, he is saving himself time, effort and money in looking for possible markets and customers. When a client clicks on the link in the affiliate website and purchases the product, recommends it to others who look for the same item or buys it again, this way the merchant leverage his chances of earning. On the other hand, the affiliate marketer benefits from each customer who clicks on the link in his website and who actually purchases the product or avails of the service provided by the merchant. Usually the affiliate gets commission per sale, which can be fixed percentage or fixed amount. The best is that it won’t cost a single dime to join an affiliate program.

If you want to be an affiliate marketer and make money out of the Internet, you may follow these three most basic steps to start your effective affiliate marketing campaign.

Your first step is to identify a particular niche you are interested in or passionate about so you won’t be bored and forced to develop your affiliate web site later on. Focusing on a specific area you known well, it will help you bring out your best. Here are a few places you can research on – ClickBank Marketplace, AssociatePrograms.com, LinkShare.com, CJ.com etc

Secondly is to look for good paying merchants and high converting products .Make a list of good paying and high converting affiliate programs for your chosen niche and create a website. In choosing the products, you must also consider the support they are giving – Marketing materials may include articles, text links, banner ads, classified ads, reports, etc.

There are many affiliate networks and affiliate solution providers that can give you info on the most profitable products and best paying merchants. So be wise enough to choose the right affiliate program.

Now that you have decided which products to promote and the merchant you are supporting and have created your own web site with a domain name and reliable hosting, you are ready to promote. This is the toughest part, since it is through this that you would be able to increase traffic to the business website, sales and of course, profit. In affiliate marketing, it is possible to earn large sums of money in a short span of time if you use the right strategies and methods.

On how to promote the products would need a separate discussion. You must continue to educate yourself by reading books, courses or other articles online about the best and proven advertising techniques.

Remember, there is no quick path towards success. Affiliate marketing may seem very tempting due to numerous encouraging testimonies of merchants and affiliate marketers alike who have benefited from it, but it really involves in a great deal of hard work and persistence. You also need to be creative and flexible.

Most affiliate marketers don’t understand this, so when they don’t make sales, they quit, look for other programs and carry on the same mistake. In the end, they said that affiliate marketing is just one of those scams in the Internet. You can work your way to great success if you employ the right strategies in affiliate marketing. You can make money as an affiliate marketer if you willing to do what it takes.

$1 Million in Google AdSense Earnings

They are calling him the million dollar man. Jason Calacanis recently revealed in his blog that he is on track to earn a million dollars from AdSense over the year ahead.

And if that number doesn’t wake you up and have you sitting on the edge of your seat, consider for a moment that he reached this level in less than a year. His company only started using AdSense in September 2004.

Calacanis runs Weblogs Inc., a network dedicated to creating trade weblogs across niche industries. And he’s quickly proven that AdSense is a credible advertising partner.

As their network has grown, so has their AdSense revenue. In January 2005 they earned an average of $580 per day. In March it was $737. In May it was $1,585. One day in July, just before he made the blog entry referred to above, they earned $2,335. Remember that is just for one day. If they can take that daily average to $2,740 they’ll be earning a rate of $1 million for a year. And Calacanis predicts that reaching daily earnings of $3,000 or even $5,000 is quite achievable.

That’s quite an achievement. Keep in mind that Calacanis has 103 bloggers on the payroll and nine staffers. Even so, many webmasters would give an arm or a leg to have even a third of that.

Google’s AdSense has been revolutionary. It has become firmly established as the darling of the online advertising industry. Although rumors are heard of major competitors launching a similar service, AdSense’s premier position seems secure for now.

In essence, AdSense has made it possible for almost anyone with a web site or blog to earn some revenue from advertising, without having to employ sales people or spend precious time searching for advertisers.

AdSense works like this. Webmasters sign up for an account in just a few minutes. They receive a small snippet of code to include on their web pages. Google will then automatically serve advertisements that are relevant to the content on the webmaster’s pages. When someone visits the webmaster’s site and clicks on one of Google’s AdSense advertisements, the webmaster earns a fee. Advertisers can pay anywhere from five cents to a hundred dollars per click, and the webmaster receives a percentage of that fee.

Many webmasters are content with earning five to ten dollars from AdSense to cover the cost of web hosting. But many, unsurprising, have higher ambitions. At a popular WebmasterWorld forum, participants share tips and encouragement on reaching a goal of $300 per day from AdSense. So it is no wonder that Calacanis created quite a buzz when he made his million dollar blog entry.

Google have proven once again that they excel at designing innovative Internet services. If you are in the web industry and have not yet used AdSense, then perhaps you should try it out. Or if you are already using it, perhaps Calacanis’ impressive results will encourage you to track the performance of your AdSense units more closely, fine tune their positions and formats, and take your earnings to a new level.

Calacanis’ million dollar blog entry can be viewed at: http://calacanis.weblogsinc.com/entry/1234000403051129/

You Really Can Make a Million on the Internet

The key to successful marketing on the internet is to drive traffic to your website. Having a website that just sits un-promoted in cyberspace is not only a waste of time, but also highly frustrating.

I have been intrigued by the idea of internet marketing for years, but it has taken me a long time to overcome all the gumption traps involved in actually getting started (the biggest one being that I am a cyber-dinosaur — my only real experience using computers for anything other than glorified type-writing involved Fortran IV and IBM punch cards almost thirty years ago).

What I have learned is that the internet marketing process can be relatively simple. You have to find a market, develop a product, and build a website to promote your product and process transactions. But, all of your efforts will be useless if nobody visits your website.

I have been studying a course that discusses the problem of driving traffic to your site in great detail. There are at least six ways to increase the number of visitors to your site, including word of mouth from one web user to the next (you are reading this letter, aren’t you?), buying targeted hits to your site using paid keyword advertising on search engines such as Google, sending advertising e-mails to your proprietary list of prospects which you generate by signing up previous visitors to your site, exchanging links for your website with other websites that have similar products to your own, paying someone else with a proprietary e-mail list to send sales letters for you (you can pay for this with a flat fee up front or in the form of commissions that result from the e-mails they send), and paying fees or commissions to other websites for putting your banners, ads, or links on their pages. By using these techniques you will increase the number of visitors to your site, which is almost guaranteed to increase your sales.

In addition to pointers on increasing website traffic, the course I am studying includes incredible amounts of information about many other topics. It is a free course (amazing, but true!) which covers every aspect of marketing on the internet. It covers material from the very basic to the very complex, including the nuts and bolts of building a website, the basic ideas behind the concept of selling on the web, and strategies for finding the right niche for marketing specific products. It is a tremendous resource for the beginning marketer, and is full of not well known tips for even the most experienced internet marketing experts.