secretWell, you don’t have to know me for that long to know that I’m not the biggest fan of all these “next big thing” internet marketing products.

The thing that has gotten my attention lately is called “Tube Kaboom.” It’s said to be the holy grail of YouTube Marketing.

Disclaimer. I am in no way affiliated with that product. Nor do I recommend you to buy it. In fact, I strongly recommend against buying it. That being said, I don’t have any actual first-hand experience with it, so I may be completely wrong with my short assessment here. I guess my lawyer would advise me to label this post as: “For Entertainment Purposes Only.”

First of all, what’s the deal with YouTube marketing and what benefits it can bring to the average online business.

Benefits of YouTube marketing

YouTube is one of the most popular sites on the web. Currently, 490,000,000 people visit it every day (that’s 490 million). This translates to 5,671 visits every second. (Stats by WolframAlpha.)

In short, no wonder that so many online entrepreneurs desire to get a piece of this traffic for themselves…

And it’s not only entrepreneurs. YouTube is responsible for promoting people in many areas, so to speak. For instance, remember the young pop-singer girl by the name of Justin Bieber? YouTube created her. Or Ken Block – the rally car drifting sensation? Essentially, YouTube again. Or the epic cooking show – Epic Meal Time?

Long story short, huge careers can be made at YouTube, so figuring the platform out is surely a great skill to posses. But how to actually do it?


Why Tube Kaboom is NOT the solution

Tube Kaboom is a YouTube marketing service. Some of the things on offer include:

  • Link building to YouTube videos directly.
  • Social bookmarking.
  • Video embeds onto a “quality” network of sites – syndication partners.
  • Actual views of your videos – viewer buying.
  • Fool the “time watched” parameter service (not actually called that; more on this below).

Right off the bat, the first major drawback is that it’s promoted by Mike Fil.saime (yes, with a dot right in the middle – it’s his new name according to the “from” line in my inbox). But that’s not all.

Even more importantly, I don’t believe that the product can actually match the potential of another well-known YouTube marketing technique … creating great videos.

Sorry for using the cliché, I really feel terribly bad about it, but the best approach at YouTube actually is to create quality content. (I really hate when anyone says “quality content,” as it’s the most useless piece of advice online, but in this case it really makes sense.)

If you take a look at who succeeds at YouTube, you’ll see that it’s almost exclusively people who have figured out how to create great videos that are very entertaining to watch. They didn’t build links, build embeds, social bookmarked anything, etc. The only thing they’ve focused on was recording great videos.

YouTube viewers these days are much smarter than a couple of years ago. Right now, everyone expects a well-produced show, and if you can’t adhere to the standards of quality then no one will watch you no matter how well your “Kaboom” is performing in the background.

The main difficulty for new youtubers isn’t the lack of links or embeds, it’s the fact that it’s no longer easy to produce a great video. There are essentially four elements of a quality YouTube video from what I can see:

  1. The idea/topic quality.
  2. The execution quality (how well you can present the idea).
  3. The video quality (technical production).
  4. The audio quality (technical production).

And you need all of them to get noticed on YouTube. Yet Tube Kaboom helps you with none.

In essence, the approach presented by Tube Kaboom simply isn’t how YouTube marketing should be done. Getting big on YouTube doesn’t involve building a network of syndicated embeds and thousands of links. It involves focusing on the content itself.

YouTube has made a lot to recognize which videos are the quality ones in their collection. That’s why they’ve introduced the “time watched” parameter. Basically, if a big percentage of viewers watch your video all the way through then it’s certainly a quality one. But if everyone stops after two seconds then it’s not.

What Tube Kaboom offers as part of their service are video views longer than 30 seconds each. In plain English, this is a way to fool the “time watched” parameter. Well, if you think that YouTube won’t get a grasp on what’s going on at some point and ban you completely for doing such a thing then you have a surprise heading your way…

The actual client base for Tube Kaboom

As you can see, this isn’t any cleverly disguised promotion, I’m really being genuine and advise you not to buy this. However, as I’m sitting here and writing this post, I’m starting to realize that there actually is one group of people who can benefit from Tube Kaboom after all.

Basically, if you have a set of crappy videos that you want to promote anyway then this product is tailor made just for you. And I mean it. I’m not being sarcastic or witty.

Think about it, since this product provides various promotional mechanisms based on fake views, embeds, and so on, only to create YouTube presence and improve rankings (both on YouTube and Google) then it’s actually the only possible way to get by for anyone with crappy videos.

If you have good videos then there are many other options to promote your content, and you can even go the 100% organic way (focusing on content exclusively), but for crappy ones, Tube Kaboom is basically the only solution…

Just like I said in the beginning, I don’t really know for sure what this product is, so if you bought it and it turned out to work great for you then feel free to correct me in the comments or send me an email and I shall update this post or even take it down. But for now, stay away from Tube Kaboom.

Behold! The Great Huge Secret of YouTube Traffic Finally Revealed by Internet Marketing Gods |

For all sorts of reasons, some people have a problem with updating WordPress installs properly. I will state now that for both our free and premium plugins we do not support anything but the latest and the prior to last version. At the time of writing that’s WordPress 3.5 and WordPress 3.4. If you’re running anything else, we can’t help you. But mostly, I want to convince you to upgrade by dispelling all the reasons why you shouldn’t or “couldn’t” upgrade.

The top four reasons we hear:

#1: “my site / theme will break”

Usually followed by “and I don’t have the time to fix it”. Well, plan some time or hire someone. This week. Because if you’re on WordPress 3.1 or 3.2, it’s a matter of time before you’ll get hacked. At that time you’ll not have the luxury of “planning” the upgrade, you’ll just have to suck it up and deal with it. Prevent that from happening and upgrade.

#2: “our core modifications will be gone”

Your what? You do realize that if you were to tinker with the code of  say, Microsoft Word, Microsoft wouldn’t be helping you either? That’s exactly how it works with us. Our plugins work with WordPress, not with what you did to it. Remove your core modifications and turn them into plugins so they behave as expected by other plugins and then: update.

#3: “plugin x that we use won’t work anymore”

Well, you’ve got three options:

  1. contact that plugins developer and ask him to fix it;
  2. contact another developer and pay him to fix it;
  3. drop the plugin and start using another plugin.

#4: “I don’t need any of the new functionality”

WordPress is updated regularly, not just to add new functionality but to fix security issues too. Frankly, most people out there, probably including you, are not able to determine whether they need new functionality. WordPress 3.4 and 3.5 added API’s for developers that plugins that you’re using might want to use, not upgrading makes those plugins function less, or not at all.


In short: upgrade. I know some developers out there are saying that we can’t “require” people to upgrade, well, I disagree. He compares it to Apple not forcing you to buy a new Mac when it breaks. The difference there is that we’re not talking about hardware. We’re talking about software. Apple regularly asks you to upgrade your system to fix battery issues or other issues.

In the end, it’s an economic decision: I’m not going to spend valuable support and development time on a minority that doesn’t want to upgrade, at the cost of not developing new features or fixing bugs for current versions of WordPress. So, if you want to use our plugins, stay current!

Why we don’t support old WordPress versions is a post by on Yoast - The Art & Science of Website Optimization. A good WordPress blog needs good hosting, you don't want your blog to be slow, or, even worse, down, do you? Check out my thoughts on WordPress hosting!

Funny Dinosaur King is Biggest in the World by, on Flickr: couldn’t resist using this headline, but there’s actually no hype in this post. I just want to talk about some direct ways of making money on the internet.

In this case, “making money directly” is the opposite of “passive income.” So quite an interesting turn of events considering that the internet is all-in on the whole passive income concept, right?

In short, this is about freelancing – exchanging your expertise for money.

Not everyone is convinced to freelancing. I know that passive income is a lot more attractive concept in itself. Who wouldn’t want to be able to make money passively, while having a drink at the beach… But, like I said in the headline, before you make it big on the internet, you have to be able to put some food on the table in the meantime.

Freelancing is actually a great way to make money short-term. While passive income is the perfect long-term strategy. Here’s what I mean; the pros and cons of both approaches:

  • Freelancing – easy to get started and make money within weeks; however, the moment you stop working, the money stops flowing as well.
  • Passive income – takes an awful lot of time just to bring any initial profits; however, it continues bringing profits long after you stop working.

I guess what I’m trying to say is that you shouldn’t disregard freelancing as a possible income stream just because your goal is to grow your “passive” business. In my opinion, getting both pieces of the puzzle working together is the best approach for online entrepreneurs.

Now, the funny thing about freelancing is that you don’t really need a CV or anything like it to get started. The only required element is one client willing to throw money at you in exchange for some specific service.


Of course, you do have to possess the necessary skills just to be able to deliver that service, but that’s a whole other story. You can start your research by taking a look at one of my guest posts. It focuses on the things that every beginner freelancer should pay attention to:

4 Freelancing Tips For Beginners

Although the post above lists some places where you can go to get your first deal, there are actually a lot more websites and job boards out there. For a more extensive list, feel free to visit another post (title not accidental):

10 Places To Find Freelance Gigs Before You Get Rich On The Internet

The best thing about the freelancing world is that you can find work on literally tens if not hundreds of different sites. And sometimes, all it takes is having a good hire me page on your own site (I had a number of request purely through my hire me page).

Anyways. One of the most significant problems in the freelancing world, besides getting clients, is productivity. As it turns out, managing your own time is much more challenging than you’d think.

There are many posts about the issue of productivity on this blog, but the simple advice I have for you today comes inside the following post:

Be More Productive by Working Early

To be honest, I was always a late-riser, mainly because I liked working at night. But even I, and it was one of the most surprising revelations, am much more productive if I get up early. Really, there’s no better feeling than having your work done by 11AM… Check out the above post to find out how to do it.

And last but not least: What do you think of freelancing as a genuine way to make you money short-term?

Things To Do Before You Make It Big On The Internet |

If you’ve been interested in making money online for any amount of time then you’ve probably seen one of those sales videos where the narrating voice tells you to shut down all distractions so you can “receive the most value” when watching the video.

The instruction usually tells you to shut down Facebook, Skype, Twitter, close your other browser tabs, and even (believe it or not) turn off your phone and lock the door of the room you’re in right now.

… And it’s all so you can “receive more value” … yeah, right.


It’s actually a marketing technique I like to call the Douchebag Ninja.

By the way, have you noticed that I’m using the word douchebag an awful lot lately? Anyways.

The rules of the Douchebag Ninja

First of all, why the name… It’s all because the technique is kind of stealth in nature, and because it’s about deceiving the visitor that there’s something special waiting for them, only to make them more receptive to the marketing message.

The main goal of the Douchebag Ninja is simply to maximize the conversions that the offer is getting. And one of the things that work quite well in doing so is convincing the viewer to shut down all possible distractions around them.

It’s actually very easy to lose a sale when you’re an online marketer. All it takes is one single distraction and your prospective customer is no longer paying attention to anything you’re saying.

Therefore, if a marketer manages to convince the viewer to lock themselves in a room and throw away the key, they have much better chance to close the sale.

The problem with the Douchebag Ninja

The problem isn’t the technique itself but the deceptive instructions used by people trying to apply it.

The thing is that you don’t need to shut down distractions to “receive value” from anything, and if someone tells your otherwise, they just want to sell you something.

Picture this, can you imagine yourself in a crowded bus, standing, yet holding a great book and reading it with complete dedication despite the overall noisy environment? It’s probably no problem for you… The fact is that we can always tune ourselves for receiving value, no matter the scenery we’re in. And we certainly don’t need anyone to tell us what to do with our phone, Facebook, or other “distractions.”

The takeaway

Basically, there are two lessons to take away from this post.

  1. Don’t believe anyone who tells you that you “need to shut down all distractions because what you’re about to see will change your life forever” – it’s just the Douchebag Ninja technique in practice.
  2. If you’re trying to sell something yourself, don’t try to trick people into paying attention to you. Instead, make your message interesting enough so people will shut down distractions on their own.

I guess that’s it about the technique itself. Have you come across anything like this in the online marketing space recently?

Funny Marketing Trick (the “Douchebag Ninja”) |

nio-designIf you’re reading this through an RSS feed then hop over to and check out my new design! If you’re already here then … well … hi!

Long story short, here’s the new design.

I wanted to change something for a long time now. These days, more and more blogs decide to go a more purpose-centered path, where the posts themselves are not all that matters, and the aim is to make the advice much more structured. This is also the path I’ve chosen for this site from now on.

There are a couple of important things to mention about this new look. So here we go:

The blog

As you can see, the blog (link) is no longer present on the homepage. Instead, it has its own dedicated section.

The blog design is kind of minimalistic and only consists of a handful of elements. The biggest change is the sidebar, which now features hardly any additional boxes.

I basically wanted to make things a lot simpler, which should make the content much more visible. As it turns out, using extensive sidebars isn’t the best strategy out there to make your content reader-friendly…

The homepage

The homepage consists of a number of different blocks, and an overall big focus on the email list (more on which in a minute).


I’m also working on a completely new “New Here” page that would welcome new visitors and show them a good starting point around the content on this site. In the meantime, the current new here link points to one of the recent posts – the 6 pillars of online business.


The next section is all about some online business resources. Those four boxes will change every now and then so don’t forget to visit the homepage from time to time.


The last two sections are pretty straightforward (the about me block and the latest posts), so no explanation needed.

The email list

Today, I’m officially retiring my subscription bonuses, which are:

  • e-book: Create Irresistible Blog Posts in Just 6 Steps,
  • e-book: 192 Unique & Creative Niche Ideas for Your Own Online Business,
  • online tool: A/B Split Test Significance Checker.

Important. They still are and will remain available. The only difference is that you don’t have to opt in in order to get them. You can download them just like that. I will be providing download links soon.

My resource pages

There are some resource pages on this blog. For example:

Currently, they’ve only gone through a slight redesign, but I will be introducing some new content and turning them into something bigger soon (to be announced).

Technical stuff

If you’re interested in this sort of stuff, the design is built on a completely new framework (Genesis). It still runs on WordPress and most of the old plugins continue to operate normally. As it turns out, I was quite lucky not to face any plugin compatibility issues.

I hope you like the new design. I’m open to comments and suggestions so feel free to let me know what you think.

New Design at! |

This question pops up time and again: why can I only add one focus keyword to your SEO plugin? People seem to think they have to set several keywords for each post. This post explores the reasoning behind that, very deliberate, decision.

This is the input field I’m talking about:

focus keyword

The focus keyword is not the meta keywords tag

This is important to note, if you think the “focus keyword” field is where you fill your meta keywords: no it’s not. I have a very specific opinion about meta keywords, which I expressed in my post: meta keywords, why I don’t use them. Read that if you haven’t yet.

Focus on your focus keyword

Think of the focus keyword as the topic of your page or post. A good post doesn’t have multiple topics, it explores one topic. If you enter a focus keyword, the Page Analysis functionality will use that as input for its analysis of your post. It can only do this for one focus keyword at a time.

While that’s a technical reason, working around that wouldn’t be an issue. What is an issue, and also the main reason the functionality works as it does, is that we’ve found it’s already hard for most people to focus a page on one keyword. Optimizing a post for multiple keywords without spamming is actually very hard. So, try and optimize your pages for one keyword and do that well.

Determining a good focus keyword

The focus keyword input field has a bit of functionality to help you figure out what would be a good choice for that keyword. If you start typing, it opens a drop down with suggestions, these are loaded from Google Suggest and mimic what you’d see if you’d enter the search terms in a Google search field, compare this:

Focus Keyword Suggest box

With this:

Focus keyword from Google Suggest

If people are searching, they’ll almost always get a drop down like that now, so the contents of it should be something you take into account when determining your focus keyword.

When you’re thinking about keywords, it’s probably also a good idea to read this post about cornerstone content and my post about the basis of keyword research.

If you want us to review your content and give you tips to improve your site, order a website review, we’ll review your site and give you practical tips on what to do.

The focus keyword in WordPress SEO is a post by on Yoast - The Art & Science of Website Optimization. A good WordPress blog needs good hosting, you don't want your blog to be slow, or, even worse, down, do you? Check out my thoughts on WordPress hosting!

pillars-sBig sounding headline, isn’t it? Actually, I’m using it to convey the gravity of the topic, and emphasize that running an online business requires you to put some groundwork in place, hence the pillars.

Of course, this is just my take on the matter, and you’ll surely find other entrepreneurs and bloggers who will present a completely different approach. However, if you want to find a good starting point for your online business, I believe this is it.

The trick with online business is that it’s not the most intuitive line of career out there.

I mean, if you want to open a traditional brick-and-mortar café, for example, then even though the venture will still be challenging, you kind of know what you need to take care of in order to succeed … things like: good location, nice interior design, good deals with suppliers, professional team of employees, education and training programs for employees, advertising, good and unique offer, attractive prices, and so on. Listing all these things isn’t that difficult. But what about online business? Well, online business has its own pillars…

(Note. I encourage you to check out one of my posts talking about the differences of online business vs. offline business.)


1. Core technology

The first, and crucial, pillar. There’s no online business without at least some technology involved. Thankfully, you don’t need to be a tech pro to be able to handle it.

I admit, I’ve a Master’s Degree in Computer Science, but to be honest, I never actually use any of my “university knowledge” when doing business online.

Your absolute minimal core technology is comprised of just three things:

  1. Domain name.
  2. Hosting account.
  3. Website.

(Well, okay, you also need a computer, but this is kind of obvious.)

Domain name is your address on the internet. Mine is

Getting a domain name isn’t a complicated process, but choosing it can take some research time.

A while ago I published two posts on how to select a domain name. The advice is fully relevant today too. Check them out:

The actual registration can be done through Go Daddy. A domain will cost you around $10 a year.

Hosting account. If I said that a hosting account is where your website is hosted then it wouldn’t be very helpful, would it?

“Hosted” is just another way of saying “stored.” Therefore, a hosting account is where your website is stored. On top of that, it’s also where every visitor can access it.

Hosting is actually one of the more complicated aspects of computer technology, but the good thing is that you don’t have to know a lot about it in order to work with your website.

The setup process of a hosting account is actually fairly straightforward. You just have to sign up for an account, and then work with the support team to get your domain connected to the host. (They can also help you to install your website if you don’t feel like doing it yourself.)

Not that long ago, I wrote a post titled web hosting for online business – complete guide. Feel free to check it out to get all the information you need for a quick start.

Website. This is the last element and actually the one you’re going to work with on a daily basis.

Interestingly, the creation, development, and launch process of your new site can be as long or as short as you make it.

The thing is that you can either go with some ready-made solutions, develop new ones yourself if you have the skill, or hire someone to help you with the whole process.

This also depends on how much money you want to spend on this. Doing things on a budget won’t consume more than $100. On the other hand, hiring a professional can set you back $5,000 or more.

Since it’s the bootstrapping approach we’re focusing on here, let’s keep this on a budget.

Rule #1: use WordPress. It’s a website management platform that’s free and powerful (it’s the one I’m using to run this site).

You can find out how to get and install WordPress in 5 minutes in one of my other articles.

Once you have WordPress, you need to get a unique design that’s going to represent your website and convey its brand. If hiring a professional developer is not an option then consider one of the respected theme stores like ThemeFuse or WooThemes. They will provide you with really great quality themes, that are optimized, safe, and in-tune with modern standards.

When you have the theme, you can install it on your site. This is a quite simple process: how to install a theme.

Apart from the above, there’s a ton of other things you can do with your WordPress site. The number of available plugins is truly exceptional. It’s kind of similar to the situation in the Apple App Store … meaning that if you need some cool feature on your site, there’s surely a plugin for that.

(You can check my list of essential plugins if you’re interested.)

2. The offer

The second pillar is your offering. In other words, what is this cool thing you do that can benefit other people up to the point where they’d be ready to pay for it?

One of the most important things to keep in mind here is not to do any shitty product creation like some people advise … the “you can create a product in one day” -fairytale.

Product creation takes time. This is simply a fact. If you don’t want to believe me then it’s your call. The internet is full of sites where the author will be convincing you that products can be created in hours. If that vision is more attractive to you then by all means tune in to it. But the reality still stays the same – there’s no quick and effortless product creation (something I talk about in the art of polishing a turd).

But products are not the only way for online businesses to make money. Offering your services is another approach that works really well.

For instance, my freelance writing services is something I started offering by accident, but it led me to my first book deal (PACKT Publishing). So you never know what outcome the future holds for you.

There’s a series of posts on this blog that talks about various online business models, feel free to check it out and try to find the one that appeals to you the most:


3. Marketing

The third pillar is marketing. In other words, how you’re going to promote your offering.

An interesting thing we can notice among online entrepreneurs is that some of them have a lot of natural talent for marketing, while others have to spend long hours learning and testing things out.

Either way, your business doesn’t exist on the internet if you’re not doing any marketing. In my opinion, the first rule of marketing an online business is:

If you build it, they won’t come.

Internet is simply too vast for anyone to stumble upon your site by accident. In the real world, for example, when you have a café, people will come across it every day if they just happen to be in the neighborhood. On the web, it doesn’t work like that.

Here are some popular elements of online marketing:

  • advertising,
  • SEO,
  • link building,
  • social media,
  • word of mouth.

Each of these elements is powerful enough to make your business profitable on its own, but as I said, it requires a lot of testing.

Although you don’t have to be an expert in all of the above, getting at least some knowledge in each of these topics is a must. That way you can pick the most suitable one for your needs later on.

Check out my brain dead simple explanation of marketing, and one of my favorite post on this blog – what being drunk can teach you about life and online business.

I also encourage you to look for advice on other blogs, but be careful not to get fooled into buying some crappy education (distraction marketing). Speaking of education…

4. Minimal education

In essence, education is great. But there’s just so much stuff available online that this whole information overload can paralyze you completely.

I’m a fan of minimal education. If you want to do something, obtain just the minimal amount of information needed and take action as soon as possible.

And this is not an opinion I always had. There was time when I was so lost in consuming this “yet another piece of advice” that I literally couldn’t get anything done. It really is a dangerous habit.

On top of that, there’s just so much crappy educational products about online business out there that getting scammed is more than easy. Here’s a two-step process on how to protect yourself from getting scammed:

  1. Realize the 1st rule of BS.
  2. Understand that most of the so-called gurus just want to get you on their email lists so they can constantly push their crap and sell you something every month.

Let’s do a simple exercise, think of a certain guru, the first person that comes to mind … got it? okay … never ever buy anything from that person!

If you want to get some heads up on who’s on the bad guys team in this industry, feel free to follow the Salty Droid.

5. Tools

To be honest, tools are a pretty individual thing (everyone has their own favorites), so I encourage you to experiment and check a bunch of them out before making any final decisions.

The typical set of tools for online business consists of:

  • a market research tool,
  • a keyword research tool,
  • marketing tools,
  • productivity tools,
  • data synchronization and backup tools,
  • content creation tools,
  • monitoring tools.

There’s truly a massive amount of stuff available online. The best thing to do before you decide to get any particular tool is to search for some genuine reviews online (reviews published by people who actually have the tool in their possession, and are not just writing a review based on the promotional material).

You can find my recommend set of tools on the official tools page, and my top 12 favorite tools ever. Additionally, you can also check out my review of Market Samurai – one of the top market research and keyword tools.

6. Productivity

The final pillar of online business. The topic of productivity has gotten really popular in the recent years. The thing is that no matter what we do, we only have 24 hours in a day, and if we learn how to use this time effectively, we can make a lot of things happen in our lives.

For an online entrepreneur, productivity is especially crucial because there’s no boss standing above us and telling us what to do. It’s really easy to fall victim to procrastination, or other common problems.

What has turned out to be a great solution for me is a work and time management methodology called Getting Things Done (GTD). Over the years, I wrote a number of articles related to the topic of productivity and GTD.

If you want to give it a shot and learn this methodology too then hop over to my series at Lifehack titled “Productivity Made Simple” – it provides a cool GTD guide.


Okay … now what?

These are the pillars … okay … so now what? -says you.

The key to success is to develop your skills/background in all six pillars at the same time.

Think of it like building an ancient structure of some kind … if you place just one pillar instead of the required six, your structure will fall right away. Using three will probably keep it standing, but not very stable. Only having the complete set of pillars put in place guarantees a stable structure.

I know that it seems like a lot of work, and it kind of is… Sorry the be the one to break this to you.

Unfortunately there are no shortcuts, and if someone wants to convince you that there are, they’re just trying to sell you something.

The good side, though, is that you don’t need to become an expert in all pillars at once. You can do everything step by step. Start by building small pillars and then expand each one gradually. This way your business can grow evenly in all areas.

Okay, enough talking. It’s about time to take some action! (That includes me too.)

The 6 Pillars of Online Business |

clip_image002Hold on, before you go, let me tell you why this might just be the droid post you’re looking for. As you know, this blog is about creating a profitable online business. A couple of days ago I got an email from Matthew offering me a guest post on doing just that in the weight loss niche.

I was probably half way through the post but I already knew that it’s going to be a great addition here. Matthew really knows his stuff and presents a real and well researched stance on weight loss as a great business area for online entrepreneurs. Tune in.

Enter Matthew

What is an epidemic? It’s a disease that has affected a large number of people in a population within a small period of time. When the disease affects almost every individual in the population, then it becomes a pandemic.

Today, obesity is an epidemic predicted to become a pandemic within the next few decades. What does this mean for entrepreneurs like you and I? Well, apart from the fact that, according to the statistics, you who are reading this article are most likely overweight, it also means that obesity has created a huge need for a solution.

And since a need for a solution is what drives the demand for every successful product in the market today, the high obesity occurrence is what gives many weight loss products their current high earnings potential. Is the demand for weight loss products high, indeed?

As you drive through the city where you live, you will see closed businesses, houses for sale, and gas prices that are astronomical and you know people have to be very choosy with their money. However, the amount of money that people are willing to spend on weight loss products steadily increases. Weight loss purchases are more and more every year. Just take a look at the information below and you will see how much of an increase there really is, and how you can take advantage of that to make money.

The War with Weight is Truly a $60 Billion Market

All over the world people are gaining weight. According to the World Health Organization between 2005 and 2015 there will be a continued increase of overweight adults from 1.6 billion to 2.3 billion. In the same period, the number of obese people will grow from 400 million to 700 million, globally.

And with that kind of overweight and obesity rise it is no wonder more and more money is being spent on weight loss. The total amount has surpassed $60 billion annually. This is because obesity causes a host of other diseases (i.e metabolic syndrome, diabetes, heart disease, hypertension, arthritis, etc.) and therefore the medical expenses for obese people are significantly higher than these of normal weight people.

What is even more astounding to me is that smoking is now second to obesity on the list of preventable death in the United States. Smoking causes cancer – an expensive disease. Yet, obesity is more expensive. The U.S. alone is now spending $190 billion on medical expenses to treat obesity, Reuters reports. This accounts for 21% of US health care costs, according to Cornell statistics. At the rate Americans are going, the cost will increase to $550 billion by 2030, says a CBS News report.

The frenzied growth of obesity in the US is reflected on the fact that while in 2000 there were no states with obesity rates higher than 30%, by 2010 twelve states had obesity rate of 30% or more. Today, 35.7% of American adults are obese. This number will be 42% in just 18 years from now, researchers predict.

So if billions of dollars are being spent on obesity there has to be a way for a person, who sincerely wants to help people become healthier, to capitalize on this money making opportunity in a legitimate and ethical way.

How to Get Your Share of The Pie in the Weight Loss Market

There are many ways one can capitalize on the growing weight loss trend, but in this article I will elaborate only on the one I am most familiar with: Affiliate Marketing. It is one of the fastest ways to make money online today. It’s not the easiest, but it works fast.

This is because as an affiliate marketer you connect with businesses that are already successful. That means you don’t have to create a product yourself. The product and the market are already there for you. In other words, you take advantage of an existing trend – a proven product that sells successfully in a thirsty market.

As an affiliate marketer, not only do you not need to create your own product, you don’t have to market a product either. You don’t have to keep a stock, pay employees, handle shipping, answer phone calls, respond to lawsuits, etc. All this is taken care of by the merchant you are affiliated with.

What’s more, to succeed as an affiliate marketer in the diet niche, you don’t have to be a dietitian or a health professional.  Your job is only to endorse the product. You do need to become a master in SEO, though, so that people will get to see your endorsement and  click on your affiliate links. This is a two-step process.

1. Identify Successful Weight Loss Products

It’s important that you associate yourself with the big players in the diet industry. That is, companies that have a proven record of success. Some of the top weight loss programs are Weight Watchers, Medifast, and Nutrisystem.

These companies have been offering weight loss solutions in the form of diet food (meal delivery, meal replacements), digital products (online weight loss tools) and one-on-one support (advice from dietitians, meetings with other dieters) for over three decades. They have helped millions of people lose weight and keep it off.

You don’t want to associate yourself with fad products. The weight loss industry is notorious for its deceptive, short-lived, magic diet pills and cabbage soup diets that become popular for one year or two before they fall into oblivion.

Stay away from products like Acai Berry – a product that is associated with scientifically unsupported health claims, and diet pills like Hoodia – a supplement proven to be 70% counterfeit. They are destined to live a short life, as the snapshots from Google Trends show below:


The Hoodia Bubble. The photo shows how the number of searches (demand) for the term: “Hoodia diet” changed over the years. It peaked in 2007. Today, the Hoodia market is obsolete.


The Acai Bubble. The photo shows how the number of searches for the term “acai for weight loss” changed over the years. The Amazonian berry appeared all of a sudden in 2009.  The acai diet was a total fad. Today the interest for Acai berry to lose weight is almost extinct.


Weight Watchers – a stable product. The photo shows how the number of searches for the term “Weight Watchers,” changes over the years. The product enjoys a steady demand with only seasonal fluctuations.

2. Create a Website

In your website you will provide information that relates to the products you are affiliated with. Thousands of people query Google every day to find information about fitness and diet products. I will give you an example. In my website, I have two pages were I review the Weight Watchers program and the Nutrisystem meal plan.

Here are some keyword phrases that people type on Google before they land on these two pages of my site, based on my Google Analytics account:

  • Does Weight Watchers work for men, too?
  • How much will I lose on Weight Watchers
  • How does Nutrisystem work?
  • How does Nutrisystem compare to Weight Watchers?

All you need to do is align yourself with the well-known weight loss programs. People needing answers to their questions about weight loss go online every day. There will be questions as basic as “how do I lose weight” to more focused “did Weight Watchers work for you” to “if I take Solo Slim will my tongue go numb.” Every question and the way you handle it is vital. People trying to lose weight will spend their money on something they feel has the potential to work for them.

In my website, I try to answer all questions that people might have about the merchants I am affiliated with. My goal is to be as objective as I can. If a product has a disadvantage, I make sure I mention this so that the reader will be informed. If your intention is to help people make an informed decision, your effort will be appreciated. People will trust your opinion and they will rely greatly on you for choosing the product that suits them best.

The more questions you sincerely answer, the better. You can use Google’s Keyword Tool to find potential topics people are interested in or you can use common sense. For example, I recently published in my site a real testimony of Jackie, a lady who lost weight on Weight Watchers. I did that simply because I know that potential customers want to read other people’s experiences before they decide on a certain weight loss program.

For every merchant you are affiliated with, here is some information you need to provide in your website:

  • Describe the product in detail, its history, why it has been created, who is it best for, what it can do for your readers. Break down how the programs works. Does the program incorporate shakes, or real meals? Does the program include going to meetings?
  • Compare your merchant’s product to other similar products. In what ways is the product you are featuring better than others in the industry?
  • Put yourself in your visitor’s position and understand what concerns you would have if you were looking for a solution to your weight loss problem. How would you feel? People often want to avoid spending time researching a product. They want somebody who will tell them what to do, believe it or not. This is where you come in answering their questions, explaining to them the benefits of the product, the various options, the pros and cons.
  • Are there any scientific studies that support the effectiveness of the particular diet pill or weight loss plan? Are there any side effects? Is the product appropriate and safe for a specific class of people (vegetarians, diabetics, etc.).
  • People love to hear real life success stories about a product they are thinking of spending money on. Put together reviews on the products you are endorsing showing potential customers the great (or not so great) experiences others have had using those products.

The weight loss industry is booming and with it the opportunity to make money online. Your goal is to help people identify what you honestly believe works. If you have tried the product yourself and has worked for you, then all the better. Give your readers the information they are looking for so that they will make an intelligent decision. You will be rewarded with affiliate commissions.

The weight loss market wave is strong and still far from the hitting the shore.  The question is, are you willing to ride it?

About the author: Matthew Denos is an internet entrepreneur who studies the weight loss market, its profitability, and the opportunities it offers to open minded webpreneurs.

Leveraging the Obesity Epidemic to Design a Profitable Online Business |

distractThis is a really nice concept I’ve stumbled upon recently. Where by “nice” I actually mean that it’s one of the douchebag marketing techniques I’ve been talking about in some of my latest posts.

The method itself is not that new, it’s been in use for years now, almost exclusively in internet marketing (ain’t that a mystery?), but I didn’t have a name for it until today.

Distraction selling/marketing is something done mainly in video marketing - where marketers use videos to convince people to buy or to take some other action.

The whole idea is to distract the visitor by tackling some common objections, only to take advantage of those objections later on in the video.

This definition probably doesn’t sound very understandable so let me give you some specific examples.

Saying that it’s not a get-rich-quick scheme

Probably the simplest trick in the book. Marketers using it take the first 2 or 3 minutes of their videos to tell you something like this:

“Hey, this isn’t just yet another of those get-rich-quick schemes that so many shady marketers try to sell these days. This is a legitimate method that will make you money.”

But then the marketer goes on to present their product exactly like a get-rich-quick scheme just 10 minutes later into the video.

They even go as far as naming their thing “the magic solution” or promise that it can “automate” the whole process (cheers, Mike Filsaime, or Mike Fil.saime, which is the name you currently use in your emails).

In short, if you want to be a douchebag marketer … say that you’re not offering a get-rich-quick scheme, but then say that you actually do (but make sure to place the second message further down the video).

Saying that no magic results are guaranteed

… but then, of course, saying that the thing on offer will teach the viewer how to pay their credit cards, car loans, even mortgage, which is, in fact, a disguised results guarantee.

The funny thing is that some sales messages say those two things in one video segment. Literally, something like this:

“Hey, I can’t guarantee any outstanding results from this, it all depends on your dedication, but imagine how great it would feel to be able to pay your credit cards, car loans, and mortgage with no effort.”

Just … come on.

Saying there are no push-button solutions in existence

This is a great example of distraction in practice. In the first segment, the marketer finds a common doubt in the visitor’s mind and addresses it by agreeing with the rational point of view.

The doubt is that there are no push-button solutions that work. Here’s an example:

“We all know that there’s no such thing as a push-button solution. People who offer them only want to trick you into buying their products.”

Which is a statement everyone can agree with. So the visitor begins to trust the marketer – they think that “he’s one of the good guys.”

Then, 10-15 minutes later into the video, all that the marketer has to do is to start describing their product exactly like it’s the greatest push-button solution of them all.

This is actually quite similar to the situation with get-rich-quick schemes. But this one’s even easier to pull off because getting rich overnight raises much more objections.

Mentioning the things “others want you to believe in”

The easiest way of finding a common language with the visitor is to do it by finding a common enemy.

And in internet marketing there’s no better way of applying this than by saying something about “them” and the shady things “they” want you to believe in.

This isn’t a separate element, per se. It can be used along with the stuff about get-rich-quick schemes and push-button solutions.

The idea is to say something like:

“Countless marketers want you to believe in all these push-button solutions, which clearly is only a way of convincing you to buy their crap.”

Again, at this point, the marketer is building some trust. The whole trick is to later on convince the visitor that they should indeed believe in what the marketer is saying. A kind of “hey other marketers lie, but I’m telling the truth.”

Of course, the douchebag element in this is that the marketer tries to convince you to believe essentially the same stuff that they warned you about just a while ago…


Saying that the solution is not going to work for everyone

This distraction is all about saying something simple like:

“Hey, this solution is certainly not meant for everybody.”

But then, the marketer goes on to describe the person who is likely to get results. Now the best part, the description of this ideal persona actually fits everyone.

Something like this:

“If you want to finally make it on the internet, build a real business, make profits, and help people, but without having to work 12 hours a day then this product is perfect for you.”

The above practically describes the niche of “everybody.”

Let’s end the list with two crown jewels in the distraction marketing handbook:

1. Promise to share some specific information

… but then share nothing useful at all.

Here’s how it plays out. Have you ever seen a video where the marketer promises to tell you some great secret, only to find out that they really share nothing except an invitation to join their list (or something) at the and of the video?

In order to make the video seem attractive, the marketer promises some specific piece of info, like: “The 7 Killers of Online Business.”

But then, even if they do mention those “7 killers” the advice will be designed in a way that the visitor can’t take any specific action apart from subscribing to the marketer’s thing. In essence, the things they say sound attractive, but they are incomplete, i.e. they’re garbage.

Virtually, it’s like me telling you this: “Hey, do you know why you’re not winning the lottery? Because you’re betting on the wrong numbers.”

2. Distract from the main purpose in general

For instance, the way we get caught up in these videos is that the marketer promises some specific outcome – the result we’ll get after watching the video. But then, throughout the video, the message shifts from “wanting to teach us something” to “wanting to sell us something.”

It’s an outstanding distraction practice, and some great douchebag marketers can really pull it off.

From the viewer’s perspective, it seems like you no longer know why you’ve wanted to watch the video in the first place. All you know now is that you want to buy the thing on offer.

To be honest, that’s basically why those so-called informational videos are so long. It’s difficult to distract the viewer from the main purpose in less than 10 minutes, but in 30 it’s quite doable.

So … there you have it! Distraction marketing in a nutshell!

Of course, don’t use these techniques unless you want to become a douchebag marketer. I’m publishing this only as an informational resource so you can notice what’s going on when someone tries to use distraction marketing on you.

Anyway, what’s your opinion? Do you see a lot of distraction marketing going on?

[Revealed] Distraction Selling; or Distraction Marketing |

SEO-landing-pagesFirst of all, I should probably explain why I’m publishing a post talking in detail about some aspect of WordPress as a publishing platform. It’s because landing pages are often one of the main marketing tools for many online businesses, and since WordPress is the most popular website management platform then it all kind of works together…

The keyword there being “kind of.” That’s because landing pages are not a native functionality in WordPress and you have to do a little digging around in order to enable them for your blog business.

By the way, if you take a look in the archives here, you’ll find a post about custom WordPress archive pages, where I offer my archives template (the exact one I’m using on this blog). Don’t forget to check it out.

What is a landing page?

Some time ago, I published a guest post on Six Revisions about good landing page design. If you’re not interested in the design part then just check out the first couple of paragraphs of the article, where I explain the purpose and construction of a standard landing page.

In short, a landing page is a page that your visitors see after clicking on a specific link on another site. For instance, if you advertise your site through AdWords then the URL you link the ad to becomes the landing page.

The purpose of a landing page is to convince the visitor to take a specific kind of action. Usually, it’s to buy something or to subscribe to your mailing list.

Landing pages have been online for a long time now, and for a very simple reason – they work. You are always more likely to succeed if you try to sell a given product through a landing page rather than through a standard blog page.

Now, the exact topic here is SEO landing pages. What differs them from traditional landing pages is that, most importantly, they are meant to rank well in the search engines.

Problems with standard blog pages

The main problem with standard blog pages is that there are too many things that can distract your visitor from taking action, and also too many elements that are not relevant from an SEO point of view.

For example, things like:

  • sidebars,
  • headers,
  • menus,
  • Twitter links,
  • Twitter and other social media buttons,
  • other links to external sites,
  • big footers,
  • comments, and so on.

Even though these elements are often a must for a blog business in general, they are not that great for landing pages. The main trait of a quality landing page is simplicity.

How to get yourself a nice landing page (the expensive approach)

Here’s the expensive approach of getting yourself a nice landing page (in the next section I’m presenting a free counter-approach).

You can get a nice landing page along with a completely new theme. I know that changing the theme of your site might not sound like the most attractive thing to do, but just hear me out.

Updating your theme to something modern is often the only way to get the possibility to use the newest features in WordPress (which every next version introduces).

The thing I can recommend here is the Genesis framework. It’s made by a company called Studio Press, and it’s become one of the most popular frameworks for WordPress.

There are many child themes available that offer various landing page templates. For instance, the one called Focus. Here’s what the standard design looks like:


Fairly blog-like designs and layout, right? And here’s what the landing page looks like:


As you can see, there is a big difference. The landing page features no header, no footer, no sidebars, nothing. There’s only the main content block. Even though this might not seem like the most attractive thin visually, it does work business-wise, and can generate a lot better conversions than standard blog pages.

The main benefit of opting for this method is that it requires no effort to create new landing pages … you pay money, but you save time.

How to get yourself a nice landing page (the free approach)

This approach won’t cost you a penny, but it will require some work (you can always ask someone for help if needed).

I want to give you my landing page template. It’s the one I’m using here, and here (image below).


As you can see, there’s a handful of different elements it features:

  • the headline,
  • the main content block,
  • a list of related posts; displayed as (1) excerpts, then as (2) excerpts + images, then as (3) excerpts again, then as (4) standard text links; this is meant to introduce some variety instead of showcasing a long list of links,
  • an email subscription block.

The reason why there’s so much content is to make the page relevant to the keyword you’re targeting with it.

To make the landing page work for your current theme, you have to take the code I’m providing below and create a custom page template with it. (The code includes a number of hints to make the integration process easier.)

The template uses one custom field to display a list of related posts (for SEO). The field is called custom_field_tags, it stores the post tags that correspond to the landing page.

For instance, if you want to display all posts tagged with “blogging” then simply set the custom field (when editing your landing page in the WP admin panel) to “blogging” (image below).


If you don’t want to display any related posts then don’t set the custom field.

This is actually it. Once you create a custom page template featuring the code I’m providing here, you can launch new SEO landing pages with ease. Of course, it’s still up to you to make the content optimized, but I hope that this template will make things easier for you on the technical side.

Download here.

Do you plan on launching any SEO landing pages on your online business blog in the near future?

How to Create a Custom WordPress SEO Landing Page [Template Download] |