Let the Trumpet Sound!

Goal Setting 101

Saturday, March 30, 2013, I checked the Alexa numbers for this website.  Tom Wacker dot  com is number 3,914,737 most popular website in the Galaxy.  Un remarkable?  Not in the least.  I had a goal to be in the top 5 million by the end of the first year, January 2014.  Another goal achieved, mark the scorecard and cue the trumpet.  Da dah ta dahhhh!

Why set goals?

Goals in life and business are like a scorecard.  If you are in process towards a goal, you have the ability to measure your progress and see where you are.  If you make measurable progress, you will attain your goals.  Sometimes they are easy, sometimes impossible.  Or seemingly impossible:)

Recent Challenge.

I have recently been challenged by a friend/mentor/idol to set up a 5 year plan (goals play a big part).  5 years?  I do daily, I do monthly, I do quarterly, I do annual.  5 years?  At my age it seems a good practice to not buy green bananas because I might die before they ripen.  A 5 year plan?  Really?

Then again, some visitor from North Dakota might turn left in front of my motorcycle and end my ride today.  Age is just an excuse, just like every other excuse.  At the end of it, they all stink.

How?

How can I possibly set up a 5 year plan?  I’ve never done such a thing at anywhere near that length.

I’ll tell you how I will do it.  I’ll sit down with a yellow legal pad and commence.  I’ll tape pages to the wall, and I’ll throw pages away.  I’ll argue with myself, trying to balance between vision and dreaming.  I’ll do ‘what if’ analysis.  I’ll ask ‘What is the worst thing that can happen?  What is the best thing that can happen?  (I already know I’ll be off there.  I ALWAYS am)  The key secret here is that I will START.  Once I have started a thing I usually pursue it to some sort of conclusion.  It won’t be perfect, it may not be complete, but it will probably happen.

Meanwhile, back at the Ranch…

I have no apparent reasons why Tom Wacker dot com is doing so well.  According to all I know, according to all I have read, according to all I have paid for, I did this place all wrong.  I have not done one iota of SEO (Search Engine Optimization) work.  Not one jot.  I don’t use tags, I don’t use meta data, none of it.  I just write, publish and publicize a little.  Go figure…

I have 2 other websites.  One is a motorcycle specific place, I set it up and carefully crafted it to Google specs.  The other is about chronic lower back pain.  I spent months setting up the architecture for SEO.  I carefully crafted every page, and every post.  Tags, meta data, feeds, links everything maximized for Google’s search engine.  By the time I got it up, Google had changed the rules, and my back felt much better.  Lost my motivation and today it sits, alone and pathetic.  I keep it up just to remind me what is important and what isn’t.

At Last, if not Least

I am enormously grateful for the apparent success of this site.  Thank you all.  It’s your fault.

Thank you Jon for the challenge.  I think…

I’ll let you know, 2nd quarter 2018 how the 5 year plan worked out!

I’m just sayin’

Guaranteed

The Olson Line is Broached

Yes, it’s true.  I have recently crossed the infamous ‘Olson Line’ in internet marketing.  What do you mean, you never heard of the Olson Line?  It’s Jon Olson’s baby step of internet marketing, $2.74 per day earned.  Why is that number special?  Makes you (me) a Four Figure Marketer.  That’s $1000 per year in case you are mathematically challenged.  $2.74 per day also puts me in the top 10% of ALL internet earners.  Yes, you read that right, 90% of the people on the internet DO NOT make $1000 per year from their efforts on the net.  WooooHoooo I’m almost a rock star!

Which is why I suspect ALL of the income claims on the internet.  I know a perilous few that are completely honest, like my friend Kathleen VanBeekom.  Her income claims are utterly legit, but she is a rare bird in the internet forest…

The Usual Suspects

I saw a guarantee today as I was reading mail from a safe list that I subscribe to “I guarantee that you will make $1000 per month within a year on this program.  This is the only guarantee of it’s type in the industry….”

Really?  Guaranteed to be in the top 5% of all internet marketers?  Just for signing up to your program?  You don’t mind if I am suspicious, do you?  In fact, don’t take it personally, but I don’t believe you.  Ahh, what the hell.  Go ahead and take it personally, I don’t believe you.

Don’t Bother with Evidence

Don’t bother showing me the evidence of your income claims.  Even I, the techno dweeb of all time, know how to dummy up a PayPal statement.  In fact, every single person that has completed their Certification Steps at Click Track Profit knows how because Justin Ledvina shows us how.  Not so that we may scam others, but so we are not taken in by bogus income claims…

More from the Multitude

So.  The lesson for the day?  Be very skeptical of any income claims on line.  They are probably lying to you…Lesson 1a:  Know that you are buying a program from a person that probably doesn’t make $1000 per year.  Most online marketers earn in hundreds, dream in thousands and advertise in millions.  Sad but true.

Bibliography

I mentioned two separate training videos from Click Track Profit.  If you are not a member, you need to join HERE and NOW.  In my opinion, the best and most honest training available on the web, at any price.  You get a lot from the free training, but if you want both of the lessons I alluded to you will need to be upgraded.  Here’s a hint for the terminally tight:  Join for free, do all the training you can for free, then take the 30 day free upgrade, where you can get the rest…You will probably find that it is worth the upgrade money, anyway.  BTW, the lesson on $2.74 is Upgraded Video #3.  Pretty eye opening.  Can you cross the Olson line???

At Last

I have a guarantee that you can take to the bank.  It has to do with those super obnoxious ‘don’t leave this page’ pop ups that come up after I have clicked off the page.

PERSONAL GUARANTEE:  I Tom Wacker, Internet Marketing Star who is in the top 10% of all internet marketers do here by swear or affirm:  I absolutely guarantee that I will not buy, will not support, will never support any product or service that says this

“Don’t be a wussy.  Stay on this page.”  

I’m just sayin’

 

The Case for Upgrading

Upgrade or not; That is the question.

At some point every one of us has to consider upgrading at various programs.  I am admittedly tighter than a bull’s butt in fly season, but I am upgraded at several programs.

Why?  Because it makes perfect economic sense, at least to me.  I have limited funds (extremely limited:)), but….

The guys at Legacy hits and at TERL have a graphic that I can see every time I log on that explains it pretty well….If I were upgraded at Legacy I would have 11,000 more credits, at TERL the number is 7600.  That’s a lot of page views!

When and Why Upgrade

Obviously, I surf extensively at both these sites, and they will be the next two that I upgrade at.  I am upgraded at Sweeva, I Love Hits, Start Exchange, ThumbVu, Ninja Surf, and SAS.  With the amount of surfing that I do, being upgraded keeps me in advertising credits that are sufficient for my advertising needs.  The further upside is the commissions.  Anytime one of my referrals upgrades or buys advertising credits I get a commission.  Pretty cool!  In some cases, it’s enough to pay for my upgrade!

Safe Lists and Mailers

I also use Safe Lists extensively.  I am upgraded at several including List Nerds, List Surfing, Adchiever and Elite Safelist.  All these have been productive for me over time, and every upgrade is worth it’s weight in e mail.  The added credits and commissions make these (and several others) a no brainer.  I can email about 10,000 per day, and wish it were more!  Safe lists can be incredibly effective in affiliate advertising!

How and When

I never, ever upgrade on the first offer.  I would rather pay a little more later, after I know that a program works, than to buy into the hype and a non-functional program.  I am an upgraded (annual) member of at least 5 of these, I just won’t do it again.  The money I spent would be way better served in functional, serviceable programs.  I am a slow learner, but I can learn:)

And Further More…

I am also a member in several ‘premium sites’.  I’ll take them one at a time and explain why I am, so that you might make an informed judgement.  Listed in the order that I think they should be upgraded.

CLICK TRACK PROFIT  In my opinion, the very best training on the net, for any amount of money.  The additional training available for an upgraded member is phenomenal.  Cheap at twice the price!

ADKREATOR  I can make professional looking splash pages, squeeze pages, banners and much more!  Not the cheapest brush in the box, but if you are into this business for the long haul, necessary.  No software to buy, and they host the ads, too.  Just a terrific weapon in the aresenal…

TRCK.ME  Ad tracking service, came directly out of old TE Toolbox.  Why do you need tracking?  You probably don’t, right away, but it gives you an easy way to test your ads that you make in AdKreator and use only the ones that work…Very sophisticated software, it is incredibly easy to use.  Easily pays for itself just with the graphics!  Very nice

TRAFFIC WAVE  Autoresponder.  You don’t need this until you start seriously building a referral list, but then it is invaluable.  I chose traffic wave for 3 reasons:  Price, Mail Delivery Rate, and ease of operation.  It seems incredibly complex at first glance, but the training videos make it quite easy.  I can do it, you can too!

And in the End

A very long post, but I hope there is some clarity here.  Thanks for sticking to the very end, I’ll try to be more compact next time…

{ In the interest of full disclosure:  I linked the sites above because I felt that the owners deserved the mention and notoriety.  I used my affiliate link at each one.  I am honest, not stupid}

I’m just sayin’

Guaranteed top 5 Ways to Make a Million!

No Truth in Advertising

I read a lot of ads in the course of my day, in the course of every day.  At least one in four promises to make you or me a million dollars.  I’m going to share a secret with you.  Right here, right now.  They are LYING to you…those are bogus ads and NOBODY can promise you a million dollars…except me.  I’m going to give you the top 5 ways to become a millionaire.  Some are the overnight variety, some take more time.

5 sure ways to become a Millionaire

5:  Lottery Tickets.  Buying a lottery ticket always increases your chance of winning, just not by very much.  Still, somebody has to win, it could be you.

4:  Music Skills.  You could be a Rock Star!  Sharpen up your guitar or keyboard and vocal skills, and it’s almost in the bag.

3:  Ball Skills.  Doesn’t matter the size or shape of the ball you pursue, all you have to do is be the very best there is and you, too can be an ‘instant’ millionaire.  Travel, excitement, what more could you want?

2:  Be Attractive.  All you have to do is make it to the beach for the SI swimsuit issue and you pretty much have the first million in the bag.  Good grooming skills are part of this one!

1:  Choose your Parents carefully:  The absolutely top notch way to riches is to pick your family carefully.  There is simply no substitute for old money.

For the Rest of Us…

Probably not going to happen.  What can and does happen is a living, and sometimes a very good living in internet marketing.  I hate to break it to you, Bunky, but it’s not going to be this year and probably not next.  But by developing a plan, and sticking with the plan no matter what, a living can be made.  Once you are making a living, a good living is within your grasp…but you have to start at the start and work up from there.  No shortcuts, no get rich quick.  It takes work and dedication…

For today:

Here’s the deal.  If just one thousand of you would send me $1000, I could break this cycle and become a real, live, overnight millionaire.  Don’t be shy, you could be part of HISTORY!  The very first time!  Pay Pal will work just fine…

I’m just sayin’…

All the King’s Horses

Or at least, Some of the King’s English

What has happened to us?  The proper use of the language has left the house!  It’s easy to blame twitter and texting and facebook, but really…

Misspelled words, bad grammar, incorrect usage is RAMPANT.  Please, if you are going to write ad copy know the difference between loose and lose.  And spelling?  Do you misspell words just to grab attention to your copy?  Does it work?  Really?  Punctuation?  I am the biggest offender here!!!

Hyperbole:  The Biggest Offence

“Copied from dictionary.com”:

vi·ral

  [vahy-ruhl  Show IPA

adjective

1.of, pertaining to, or caused by a virus.
2.pertaining to or involving the spreading of information and opinions about a product
or service fromperson to person, especially on the Internet or in e-mails: a clever viral ad.  See viral marketing.
3.becoming very popular by circulating quickly from person to person, especially through 
the Internet:the most memorable viral videos; This book is already viral two weeks
before its official publication date.
4.pertaining to a computer virus.

Idioms

5.go viral, to spread rapidly via the Internet, e-mail, or other media: Footage of the candidate’s off-colorremarks went viral within minutes.

Please, for the sake of all that is right, quit naming your product ‘Viral’.  It’s not all that impressive.  If you can’t come up with a catchy name, viral in it will not help.
“copied from dictionary.com”

best

  [best]  Show IPA

adjective superl. of good with better as compar.

1.of the highest quality, excellence, or standing: the best work; the best students.
2.most advantageous, suitable, or desirable: the best way.
3.largest; most: the best part of a day.
adverb superl. of well with better as compar.

4.most excellently or suitably; with most advantage or success: an opera role that best suits her voice.
5.in or to the highest degree; most fully (usually used in combination): best-suited; best-known; best-loved.

I believe the most over used word in our business.  Repeated over use had desensitized me to it’s use.

The list goes on…and on and on

There are more, many more.  Please add your all time best viral misused word or phrase in the comment section.  Then maybe this blog post will go viral and be rated as the best all time forever.

I’m just sayin’

Launch This

Enough Already!  Let it Go!

I grew up in the dawn of the space age.  I remember Sputnik 1, I remember John Glenn, I remember.  I know what a launch is, I even know what a pre launch is.  Start the countdown and GO!  T minus 10…9…8…7…6…5…We have ignition…3…2…1… We have liftoff.  For the absolute most complex missions, the clock was started 10 days early.

Endless Launch Sequence

No one is served by the long sequence launch in our industry except the owner who is trying to make some money.  Now I have no qualms with making money, I like to make a little myself.  What I do object to is the endless hype and hyperbole of a prelaunch.  60 days?  Really?  You need the time to get your script ready?  What?

Please Let Me Pay

Won’t you please let me pay for the opportunity to wait until your product becomes available at some future date?  For something I can’t even SEE yet?  Oh, yeah.  Where do I click!  Do you take PayPal??

A Shining Example

There is a ink service that has been in pre launch for over 6 months.  They are still showing the same squeeze page that they created the first day.  I’ve run out of ink at least three times since they have started their blitz.  I’m glad I’m not waiting on them to print my next project…

And More

New Traffic Exchanges are launching at the rate of one every other day here in 2013.  Are we really that far short of the quota?  Really?  You had better bring the whole deal if you want to succeed with a new TE in this market.  I’m not saying that none will last, or even succeed, but the competition is frantic.  It better be SPECIAL or you don’t have a chance.

New ‘ViralListBuilderMailingListSafeMailerWhatevers’ are nearly as common.  If I am going to put the time and energy into a mailing list, I’m going to want to KNOW that they are going to have a membership that will be responsive and plentiful.  I’m not talking mailing to 300 people every day…

The End

If you are thinking that a Traffic Exchange or a Safe Mailer is your ticket to fame, glory and riches, you better consider the competition.

I’m just sayin’

This Time It IS Different

That’s Insane!

The definition of insanity is doing the exact same thing again and again and expecting different results.

I saw an ad in rotation today for “A brand new penny auction–guaranteed 100% legal”.  Really?  Somebody is really going to try that game again?  I’d guess that the idea is to make a pile of money then get out just before the Feds come crashing through the door.  I wonder what country the current site is based out of.  I’d bet it’s not the US or the UK.  I didn’t even run whois on the address, I just don’t care.

The point I am trying to get to is that all of us have moral choices to make about who and what we support or promote or own.  I like to think that I watch myself pretty carefully and that my choices are always good.  They aren’t.  But money isn’t worth enough for me to violate my standards…

Moral Choices in Advertising?  Are you Kidding??

Not at all.  Some of my friends won’t eat Tuna as a way to protect dolphins.  I have friends that ride bicycles to ‘save the earth’.  Some people won’t bank at a corporate bank under any circumstance.  We all make choices and actions based on our moral values.  I would ask you all, and will try myself, to make those same sorts of choices in the TE business.  Don’t let money be the only currency you trade in.  Please.  We’ll all be a lot happier if we don’t.

Next batter…

I got friends in looowww places…

Don’t let that song fool you, I’m a rock and roll guy…and I got to watch some pros rock and roll this week.  I was on the near sidelines to watch the run up and the launch of the new Tim Tech mailer, Listnerds (join here).  Very exciting to watch and even be a small part of. Those guys really did a bang up job on the mailer, I’m sure it will be a wild success.  Two days in and they are at 2000 members and still growing hourly…

Haven’t heard of it??  You will.  Tim Tech gave their affiliates the first two days to make hay on the new subscriptions before they even began to advertise.  They will carpet the industry with ads and promotions, you can be sure.  A really classy move giving the associates time to push the launch.  I’m not so sure I’d have had the patience to do so…Nicely played, TimTech!

I’m just sayin’

Fire and Fall Back

Trust and the Tom Wacker business model

Ultimately the business of internet marketing (just like all others) gets down to trust.  I have to trust my business partners, or there is no business.  When I owned off line businesses I had to trust my suppliers to get my product to me on time, I had to trust my customers to pay for my product and they had to trust the quality of work done.  It’s the same here, more or less.  Even more so, I think, because we don’t deal in anything physical.  My promise, and yours, is really all we have to sell or buy.

Trust Me

It was with some dismay that I watched a new product launch yesterday.  Essentially the precise same product that the same person launched 6 months ago.  Different name, of course, slightly different slant on the product, but essentially the same.  What happened to the last one?  Really?  I bought into the last one, and I haven’t heard a peep.  I guess it was just time to fold it up and start again.  Trust me, this time is different!

And so today.  I have been eagerly awaiting a product launch (by another company) that is promised on Monday.  Wait for it, it will be worth it.  Sit on it, we’ll make it worth your patience.  Don’t breathe a word until the date and time, we’ll spring this together and you will have as good a chance as the next guy.  Well, except for our buddies.  We’ll let them start their ad campaign (complete with logos and signups) a couple of days early.  Just come around on Monday, kid, and don’t forget to send your money.  Trust me, it’ll be worth it.

The Trust Factor

For me the two aren’t the same.  The first example stinks, and I don’t trust the guy anymore.  Simple as that.

The second example is more complex.  This is a company that has never let me down in the past.  Every promise made is a promise kept.  For the small amount of money I have invested in them, the return (ROI) has been significant.  They have done every single thing promised and more.  Plain and simple.  Easy as that.  I’ll stay with them, and even support them, but this doesn’t smell very good to me.  I get that you have to take care of those that take care of you, and a couple days early is a huge advantage to a serious partner(s).  I get it, really I do.  It still doesn’t smell very good, and I am now officially watching….

And on a much brighter note….:)

MEGA BOOST

The Legacy hits folks and TE Racing League have a GREAT new promo called MegaBoost.  Essentially, you surf their sites and you get a surf bonus.  Sign up for all four and you get a 25% bonus for surfing one site, 50% for surfing 2 of the sites (at the same time), 75% bonus for 3 and 100% for surfing all four at the same time.  100%!  Really.

The four sites are:  Legacy Hits, Social AdSurf, Ninja Surf, and TERacingLeague.  All 4 have a high quality surfing experience alone, but 100% bonus for the four is terrific!  Best deal in the market, right now.  Just as a hint (go ahead and ask me how I know), it will pay to have your user id and number ready as you update your profile on all 4 sites.  You user number is the number just behind the equal (=) sign in your affiliate link.  You have to update your profile at all 4 sites, and it is a little bit complex to do.  The reward for your diligence is way worth it!  Enjoy!

I’m just sayin’…….

 

 

Monday Rant and Roll

Have you seen all the new Traffic Exchanges?

I’m trying hard to decide if I am pissed or concerned or mystified.

Pissed, because I know that 80% of these have 0 chance to succeed.  The owners buy the script, set up the site and wait for the money to roll in.  90% of the new places won’t have 300 active members at the end of 2013.  300 members IS NOT a viable site.  No way to make it be viable…It takes numbers to succeed.

Concerned, because I am (trying) to earn a living here.  I can’t figure out a way to make rampant failure be a positive for me.  Makes me choose my spots very carefully.

Mystified, because I can’t for the life of me understand what the owners are thinking.  If you are going to invest money into a venture, why not invest the time it takes to be successful?  If you are going to invest time into a venture, why not invest the money it takes to make it go?  I am confused.

The FOR SALE sign is out!

This morning, Feb.11, 2013, I saw my second TE for sale sign in general surf rotation this year.  The one I saw listed SIX individual sites that I have never heard of.  I’m not everyplace, but I do get around some.  I’d think this would be a candidate for Blaine Jones “$100 per traffic exchange offer”.  Blaine has a standing (I think it’s still standing) offer to buy your TE for $100 just so he can fold it up and put it to bed.  I think there are well over 1000 traffic exchanges listed now, I hope Blaine has deep pockets.  I wish him well…

Role Reversal

The ownership team at Legacy Hits (Legacy, Social Ad Surf, Brand Me) have acquired Ninja Surf.  This site is well designed, has a good usable script, and some membership.  I’m betting that Ken and Rodney and Marcus will have Ninja Surf singing and dancing in very short order.  Their track record is pretty impressive, and I am glad to see another quality site on the net.  I’ve joined, and I recommend it, particularly if you want to get in on the ground floor and watch the changes.  I predict Ninja Surf will be in the top 25 by year’s end.  Remember, you read it here first!

One more thing

Another site that has come on the scene since Jan 1 that I am sure will make an impact is TE Racing League (TERL).  NASCAR themed with all kinds of new wrinkles, this is an impact site for me.  If you go to TERL today, you can sign up for this Sunday’s race.  Yes, racing at a traffic exchange!  It is great fun, and a rapidly growing site.

That’s it, I’m done.  Good Monday to you!

Chat Protocol

It’s a social world out there in Traffic Exchange land, and we just as well get used to it.  But there are some basic rules of courtesy that can make it more pleasant for all the participants.

1:  Seven smilies does not constitute conversation or ‘chat’.  I know you have to be really clever to post smilies in the chat bar, but try to have a conversation.  Please.

2:  Try to make it as near normal conversation as you can.  If you try to dominate the chat, the participants can just go back to surfing until you run out of steam.  Really.  Nobody is particularly interested in your fascination with and arcane knowledge of gum tin foil ball construction.  Really.

3:  Chat isn’t the place to sell.  Save your links and great deals for another format.  Chat IS the place to make friends and acquaintances some of which might someday wish to join you in your venture…if you are a friend FIRST.  Many chats don’t allow links, and most chat participants really don’t want that.  They are looking at Ads for the same thing, for crying out loud…

4:  Polite and courteous works wonders in chat.  Don’t slam any groups, countries, religions, or races.  All are represented in this industry.

5:  I don’t care how much scotch you drank tonight, I really don’t.  Save it for your bar buddies.

6:  It is “The World Wide Web”.  People all around the earth use it at all times of the day and night.  Don’t assume that lunchtime where you are is lunchtime for anybody else.  The relationship to ‘time’ is non existent here.

7:  The language your mother taught you works just fine in Chat.  Foul words and nasty comments are offensive to someone, every time.  EVERY time.  Every SINGLE time.

So.  There is my chat bellyache for the week.  I really enjoy the chat feature most of the time.  I have met some people in chat that I am really fond of, and care about.  If a basic anti social person like me does, I presume many others have.  That’s a good thing.  It can be a great thing, so long as everybody follows basic fundamentals.