Look... Getting started is tough...
I wasted years (from 2004 to 2009 to be exact) researching everything to do with making money online instead of taking imperfect action and building the skills that pay the bills.
"Choose a niche" they said...
I kept researching.
"Post 1 piece of content per week for 3 years" they said...
I kept researching.
My ego mind wouldn't stop doubting everything and there was an impossible desire to "know how everything works" before starting.
I was stuck in inaction.
What if I chose the wrong niche?
What if I spend 3 years building and it doesn't work?
My big fear was that all the time would be wasted.
Instead, I spent time every evening and weekend for over 5 years searching for the illusion of knowledge.
That's right, 5 years of researching felt easier and safer than 3 years of work.
Ironic, I know.
But, once my wife and I went all in on a site in the spirituality and meditation niche (which had no signs or numbers saying it was a 'good' niche), something powerful started happening.
I built skills.
Instead of learning about how to research keywords and reading reviews of keyword tools...
I jumped into the deep end, and started researching keywords.
Which tool? Who cares, I tried 1 for a month... Did the work
Tried another the next month, did the work.
Eventually I found my process and my favorite keyword tool.
That's the moment I began to accumulate the skills that still pay all my bills.
In fact, within 6 months of extreme effort and time invested in my meditation/spirituality site with my wife...
Small business owners I knew around town expressed their interest in help with their websites and ranking on Google.
Here's the part that most people miss...
It was this freelancing income that allowed my wife and I to leave the rat race first... Not the income from our authority site.
This is where the 'Freelance' layer comes from.
It can get the cashflow going, fast!
Now, I explain my path in the nearly-famous Marketing Arbitrage Business Plan vid here.
But today, you're learning version 2.0 of this plan...
Updated for the new world we live in... And where the world is headed towards 2025 and beyond.
Then, at the end, you'll learn 3 ways to scale this business model so you can potentially earn hundreds of dollars per hour...
Great... Let's jump in!
The Affiliate Marketing Remix
The 2020s have been off to quite a start for the new decade.
AKA: Everything has changed.
Small mom and pop shops in many states have been forced closed and millions now working from home.
Over the last 5 years, the trend for 'Affiliate Marketing' is up.
Since lockdowns? Even higher.
There are more and more people building affiliate sites now and they all need help with content!
It's a growing market and many folks want to outsource the entire process (or as much as they can).
This brings up back to the 'Freelancing' bit again.
Here's the big idea.
Combine the business model of building your affiliate site with the IMMEDIATE implementation of selling services to affiliate marketers as a freelancer.
Starting your site builds you the skills you need, quick.
The freelancing gigs get you the cash you need, quick.
Simultaneously you're growing your affiliate site that can generate residual income later to free you from the freelancing, over time.
It's the best of both worlds.
Advantage with affiliate marketing - Consistent residual income once built and no ceiling to how much you can make.
Problem with affiliate marketing - It takes years, not months.
Advantage with selling services - You can start earning income fast!
Problem with selling services - You may not have a skill that folks can 'click and buy'
But that's precisely the skill you'll build by following this plan.
Here's how it works:
First, you build yourself an affiliate site, FAST.
Choose a niche based on the 5 minute niche finder HERE.
Honestly, it doesn't matter what niche you choose...
My one tip here (beyond the steps in that post above, obviously) is to choose something that you are either mildly curious about OR choose one that you think more boomers would be interested in...
Because statistically boomers (folks over 55) have a LOT more disposable income than millennials (folks under 35) right now.
Trust the 5-minute niche finder process and pull the trigger.
Let's move on to the next steps.
With your niche chosen and now you build out your own site, yourself based on the tutorial here.
I recommend you do a 30 day sprint and go from "WTF am I doing here?" to... "Oh yea, this is actually simple... I've got this" as quickly as possible.
Writing about 30 posts, your about page, a homepage... Bingo, you're there.
I've laid out the entire process for building your affiliate site from scratch in this free course, here.
Remember, you're goal here is to build the skill.
Reliable but inexpensive hosting and a free theme, you're off the ground for $10/mo
Now you can build the skill.
And it's my recommendation to go as fast as you can...
If you're in massive action every day, your mind will have no time to wander into doubt...
Just keep building!
Get to where you've flexed the muscles enough to prove to yourself AND TO FUTURE CUSTOMERS that you can indeed write quality affiliate posts.
At this point, you've completed phase 1 of the plan!
From this point on, you will still need to add at minimum 1 new post per week to this site to keep it as a living and breathing example of your awesome work.
And, because you need to keep growing this asset as it will free you from the freelancing work so you don't just replace one 'job' with another.
Now, you can start on phase 2...
Phase 2: Selling Services, Fast!
Next up, you'll need to build a site based around your new 'writing services' business that we're inventing out of thin air.
Because you can just start offering 'affiliate review post' services if you so choose.
And if you want to make income fast, selling services is the way to go.
You just need a place to promote your services and to accept payments from your future customers.
For this, I recommend getting "yourname.com" if you can... Like this blog.
It's just my name.
Or, if your name is taken, go with something like MilesTheWriter.com... Probably best to use your name and not mine... lol.
This site will just be a few pages of content.
The bare minimum to make a solid case for hiring you and just enough tech to transact.
We're going for a minimum viable product here.
Once you've proved what works you can get fancy and build funnels if you want.
But for now, start simple.
Keep it minimum viable!
What Services Can You Offer?
Start by looking around at the competition Googling phrases like "Affiliate Marketing Content Creation" or "done for you affiliate review posts" etc.
I'd spend hours down this rabbit hole and find a great 'click and buy' service that I'd model.
I'd also pay VERY close attention to the price per word so I could know if I'm pricing myself cheap or expensive in the marketplace.
You can also look through the writer platform here (get a trial there)
The goal is to see what your competitors are doing on those platforms... Meaning, sign up as a CUSTOMER looking to buy content so you can see the marketplace from your customer's perspective.
If you want to make sales fast, you gotta do the market research here and figure out what offers are already working.
Take notes on the headlines, the sales letter snippets, start readying yourself during your research to write your sales letter and your homepage.
The big key you're trying to figure out is the price per word you will begin charging.
At any time, any day, you can always go raise your prices, so stay flexible and just keep moving forward.
In the beginning, getting experience and testimonials is key.
You'll need to do some projects on the lower end of the scale first and once you get a clientele, you can increase to your target over time.
Personally I have a LOT of content written around 7 cents per word. It is publish ready affiliate content.
I've paid up to 15 cents per word and as low as 4 cents per word.
I don't like paying 10c per word... But I'm willing if it is PERFECT.
And you can write great review posts now because you have all that experience from phase 1.
Now it's time to build site #2.
This site is going to be simple... Homepage, About page, Services page and contact.
Homepage = All about your CUSTOMER'S goals, challenges and desires. This page should sell your services.
About page = Your story learning all you've learned and this is where you show off your affiliate site.
Services page = Your sales letter that sells your main packages.
Now, this will evolve over time based on what the market responds to and doesn't respond to.
Start by selling 1 post (1500 words) with a click and buy shopping cart like the estore plugin that is $49... Or just setup a paypal button.
Here on the services page is where you make your offer.
Are YOU going to do the product research? Or will they?
Are YOU going to do the keyword research? Or will they?
Spell it all out on the sales page so the reader knows what the 'deal' they're about to buy is...
Follow this copywriting framework and you'll be great for minimum viable!
Consider having a "5 Posts" and "10 Posts" pack available on that page too if you'd like. Probably need to discount those larger packs a bit...
But who knows?!
You' gotta jump into the market, begin offering services with your best guess and then just adapt from there.
Seriously, this is the key to entrepreneurship right here.
Just start offering things, see what sells, see how long it takes you, then start adjusting and adapting from there!
Ok... Let's wrap up phase 2.
How do you know when you are finished with phase 2?
When you have a simple and clean website that talks about your potential clients' problems, the challenges of writing the posts, the lack of time... yadda, yadda.
It shares your story and your demo site you're still building.
The site has the ability to sell them the solution.
A sales page and a button... That's it.
At this point you're good to go on to phase 3.
Phase 3: Marketing Your Services.
This is the fun part...
Because it's based around helping people which is fun.
Honestly, there are so many 'busy' people who are trying to build affiliate sites but they aren't going fast enough...
My resurvey from yesterday is FULL of these kinds of folks
Mixed with folks who want something that looks like 'guaranteed income' and 'faster income' than just a pure affiliate play.
I can "SEE" that the market has both sides, so for you as a new creator entering the market, it's just a matter of finding these folks and making the connection.
So where do these folks hang out?
Forums (like the Builders Society and SBI) that have services sections.
Facebook groups focused on flipping sites, affiliate sites, niche sites, etc.
Telegram groups, Discord groups, etc.
Instagram, Tik Tok, YouTube, etc.
Job boards like the problogger job board
Platforms where folks buy content like Writers Access or Upwork (but I'd do these last because the platform takes a cut)
Answer sites like Quora or Reddit.
And with 4 or 5 hours of serious, deep-dive research on Google, you'll find dozens of places you can market your services and network with potential customers.
Now you hunt.
You wanted to make money faster...
Which means there is more work up front (2 sites, not 1) and you gotta get out and pound the pavement.
You gotta go strum up business.
Which can happen several ways.
First, go engage and be helpful in those locations. Build up your profile with some credibility.
Obviously match your name as close as you can to your domain name and fill out your profile with some sales copy about how you help and ultimately link to your services.
If you're thinking: "Miles, I can't help these folks, I'm just a beginner"
Great... Share my helpful videos that answer their questions.
Be a 'connector' at first.
When you help folks out with an answer in a Facebook Group, or some other community where you share a super helpful video with no ads and no pitch, like my vids have... You build cred as being helpful.
Start connecting with folks you meet in these groups and the other engaged people by adding them as friends and engaging with their relevant posts.
Ask more about the site they're building... How often they post to the blog. Etc.
Get them to share that they aren't posting as much as they should and BINGO!
You have a warm lead in the pipeline.
From here you can ask them if you can DM them... "I've got an idea... Can I DM you something?"
Then you share your story when the time is right.
You're building your niche site about _________ and you've been writing content for others affiliate sites on the side if they'd like help.
And, if you've never written content for another affiliate site... Offer to write them a post for free.
This builds your skill and it'll allow you to honestly say you write for other affiliate sites on the side.
You may even get a testimonial!
Eventually you start selling posts with the goal of building a clientele of awesome affiliate site owners who rely on YOU for their content and you've got cashflow a LOT faster than if you just go at affiliate marketing alone.
You may be thinking "But Miles... This sounds like a lot of work."
This is entrepreneurship.
It takes WAY more time and energy to build a business than it does to earn a paycheck.
You aren't thinking that somehow making money online is easier than working a job... are you?
Because that is a lie...
A mind-virus planted by the greedy gurus to sell you their scam.
Scaling this into a big a$$ business
I don't want you to work on a project that can't create long-term lifestyle freedom.
And some readers have BIG goals.
Here's how this can scale a few ways.
First... The Arbitrage Play
Here, you act more as a project manager and quality assurance person... you outsource all of the content to 3rd party writers.
Your goal here is to write less and less as the business grows and spend more time selling services and managing your team of writers.
This is the platform I'd use to hire and manage writers.
If you live near a university, there's probably a few english majors out there looking for some side income.
It's a scale play that can get VERY hectic for someone who is NOT a natural project manager.
Second... The Flipper
For many people, getting the niche idea, the logo, the brand, the look & feel dialed is the scary part.
If you build out starter sites with the first 10 posts or so, that is totally merchantable.
Requires you eating the costs early, but your payday may be bigger this way compared to simply selling your time writing.
Flipping a few sites could build you a nice little nest egg that you could invest in more writers to build more sites, thus compounding your portfolio of sites.
You could also buy undervalued sites on the 2nd hand market, improve them and re-sell them for a much higher multiple...
Because you'd be so actively engaged in the marketplace selling what you've created and watching the other deals go down you know what a good deal and bad deal is.
It's a skill.
Third: The AI Pay Raise
I've been testing and working with AI for marketing for years now.
There have been some amazing leaps forward and my favorite AI writing assistant here can be a huge time saver for content writers.
No AI tool out there can write a full affiliate review site on it's own.
But, once you build the SKILL, you can dramatically speed up the time it takes to write a post...
I know people that are publishing 1800 word posts they've written in less than a half hour with AI...
Once they build the SKILL.
Using AI in this way would drastically increase your HOURLY wage if you are earning PER WORD.
Check out this hypothetical:
You negotiate a deal to write 1500 words for $105 which is 7 cents per word.
Lets say it takes you 4 hours to write a publish-worthy post. That means you'd earn $26.25 per hour.
3 hours? You're making $35/hr.
But what if you get it done in 30 minutes?
Well, that's an effective hourly rate of $210/hr.
Now we're talking!
20 posts for others per week (10 hours work) and you're looking at $2100/week.
keep that up for 52 weeks and that's 6 figures!
Plus... It'd take you less time to write your posts for your affiliate site, so it'd probably compound your income faster, too.
Personally... This is the path I'd go.
Honestly, I don't want to run a big agency.
I'm not very organized, lol.
But, building a few skills around publishing affiliate posts with an AI that could make 6-figures part time using EXTREMELY rough napkin math?
It's simple and I like simple.
The perpetual search for 'knowing' the right niche or the right business is keeping you stuck.
I wasted a 5 years trying to figure out which niche would keep me from wasting 3 years.
Then, I went all in on taking action and that built skills that pay the bills.
I leveraged those skills to build my assets with great long-term residual income...
And I leveraged those skills to sell services to small business owners.
That combination of income allowed me to break free from the rat race much faster than being 100% reliant on affiliate site income.
Go build you some skills.
Build a couple websites.
Sell some services.
Entrepreneurship is all about committing first, then taking step after step relentlessly in the direction of your strategy.
You now have the strategy.
Now it's time to build.
Get to it!
You may surprise yourself.