First off, I will be the first one to tell everybody that I am new to this. I wish I could say that I have tons and tons of internet marketing experience but I do not. That is why I did not have a opt-in box on my page until today. I am still learning WordPress and things like that are still a learning experience for me. I actually got a lot more visits to my site then I thought was possible for only having one post but unfortunately I was unable to capture any of those people so they could join me on this journey. But the issue is resolved and now it’s on to new things.
So, what am I going to do to make my money? I have been told time and time to not chase dollars but to chase pains. I am already seeing this come to fruition since the couple of things that I have done have not been easy and maybe because I am not doing it for the right reasons or because there is no audience for it yet. But alas I shall detail what is going on inside of my mind. These are the things that I am starting to take action on and hope to see some benefits from.
1) Writing a children’s book.
I got a wild (wild for me) idea to write a children’s book. The concept is a play on a very old concept but with a skewed perspective and some gross humor. My original plan was to hire an illustrator and then publish it myself but then I thought about pimping it out to some publishers. Did I tell you guys that I am still learning? Because I am starting to learn that publishers really don’t care about my insanely awesome children’s book that they’ve never seen anything like before. That is, unless I present it to them in a way that they want to see it. I found that not all publishers will even accept a script from a nobody and they mostly only want to get the scripts from an agent. So I searched for publishers that are open to receiving scripts straight from the authors and started to send them in. Also realize that each and every publisher has a certain way that they want to receive the script. Some want it with a bio, a synopsis, word count, plain text, no double spacing, the list goes on and on…..maybe I will contact and agent.
My three options with the Children’s book:
1) Get an illustrator and then publish it myself (ebook and print)
2) Hire an agent and have them push the script (still don’t know if that is really what they do)
3) Send the script directly to publishers
So far I have begun the process of interviewing illustrators on elance.com. The estimates that I have gotten back for a 32 page picture book is anywhere between $750-$6000. I am not scared of spending the money if I know that I will get a return on my investment but I still need to validate the concept a little more before I do that. So far I have tested the script with about 10 different people and kids and have gotten pretty good feedback. I have also sent the script out to seven different publishers. I got one rejection so far because they said that it did not match with the types of books that they publish. I am still awaiting any feedback on the others. I was actually kind of excited that I got the rejection letter because it meant that I tried. If you don’t try you will never get a rejection letter. I kind of want to frame it as my first proof of taking action. So I will keep everyone informed of what the future holds and maybe I will dedicate a whole post to just this subject.
2) Making an iPhone app.
I was inspired after watching the video for the App Shortcut. I never thought that it was possible for somebody like me to make an app and actually get it onto the app store. While watching the video I thought “I could do this!”. I just need to find a developer and give them my very specific wants and hopefully they will deliver what I am asking. So I took my idea over to fiverr.com and found a guy that said he did iPhone App Design. I told him what I wanted and he said that it would be $10. WHAT!? This is awesome. I am on my way to having an app in the iTunes store. Nope. I’m dumb. He was just designing the user interface. Oh well, I guess it has to be done anyway. So I gave him my $10 and hoped to see something high caliber. Honestly, I didn’t really expect high caliber but sometimes Fiverr will surprise you for what you can get for next to nothing. So I got the UI drawing and it was bunk. Not even worth $2. And that is probably due to my lack of communication. One reoccurring theme that I have learned about people using software developers and designers (especially when they are overseas and may have a language barrier) is that you need to clearly and concisely describe what you want. Even if you have to sketch it out and then send it to them. They cannot read your mind or see your vision. So this left me with the idea of designing my own. I feel that I have the ability to do good design so I am doing the UI myself and my next step is to find a developer to bring it to life.
3) Create an affiliate website.
The ball really got rolling for me to take action with internet marketing when I first learned of affiliate marketing. I really had no idea that it even existed. But once I did it seemed like the whole internet clicked for me. I realized why people spam YouTube comments with weight loss links and why there are websites like thisiswhyimbroke.com. They exist solely to sell me something so they can get a portion. I thought to myself “I want some of that!” but I have absolutely no idea what I am doing so its not that easy. So here is what I did and how I executed it in an ungodly horrible manner.
I registered and created the website bestofcigars.com in hopes that I would create a blog and beginner advice for cigar smokers all while suggesting popular cigar products that they will buy and make me crazy rich. This website is bad, I mean baaaaaaad. It was a first effort to create something from nothing in a day or two. So a quick registration for Amazon Associates and a 5 minute stop to Fiverr.com and I had my very first affiliate website. I got most of my inspiration for what I wrote about the overseas developers because of what happens next. I told the crazy cheap website guy to set me up a affiliate webstore with categories such as humidors, cigar books, ashtrays, and accessories. It appears that the dude just looked for top 100 in tobacco and threw it all up on the site. So needless to say I have a ton of stuff that is not relevant to cigars on the site. So maybe if I communicated better I would have gotten better results. But I don’t know if I even knew what I wanted so maybe that is why I wasn’t able to inform him. Lesson learned. Find out where you are going before you start running or you may not like where you ended up.
I don’t really like writing about that one. I feel that it makes me look stupid but my goal is to be transparent and show you all of my slip ups and failures. Heck, at least the site is there. I can always fix and make it into something better. Which I plan on doing.
There are some more ideas but I am limiting myself to these few so I can better focus on getting them done. My main hope out of this group is the children’s book. I really like the concept and I think it could make some money. I will post any progress that happens with these projects.
Thanks for tuning in. Till next time.