Crypto Crazy?

Many of you know that I am friends with the guy who runs and I have to tell you that the way he thinks about life in general boggles my mind.

He recently wrote an article about Cryptocurrency that stretched my brain cells.

Is Cryptocurrency The Future Of Money?

cryptocurrency info image

Cryptocurrency ma be the wave of the future. It pays to do your homework.

If you haven't been following along: Here's a link to what crypto is all about.  It's a digital "medium" of "exchange".  The value of which is ascribed by the people involved in the exchange.

Are Dollars Important Anymore?

It seems (at least in a thought experiment) that "dollars" may not be that important anymore (in the near future).

If people start to "value" cryptocurrencies in the way that they have been ascribing value to dollars then "Dollars" (read "federal reserve notes") may go the way of the Dodo Bird and other "extinct species".

This Is A Problem For Those Who Control The World As We Know It

If I was a Central Banker (and I am not) I would be worried.  It seems that many people are finding a different "medium of exchange" outside of Central Bank (Government/Dollar) control.

No way to track, no way to "control".  This is a problem for me if I am a Central Banker.

Doing Research

I've been doing some research....

Remember how a few years ago that all of the "online gambling" sites went away in the USA?

Guess what... they are back - only this time you can gamble "anonymously" with cryptocurrency.  Right here in the Good 'Ol USA.

All you have to do is exchange your hard earned dollars for some "crypto" like Bitcoin, Litecoin, or Dogecoin, (among others) and you are back in the game.  Check out this site to see what I mean.

What This All Means

If you are not in the "crypto" realm you should be.  You ought to be learning everything you can about it.  It is the next phase in the evolution of "money".

More to come....

All the best,


Building or Buying Links – What Works Best?

Once a person gets beyond the initial learning stage in internet marketing - they know how to build a website, they've done their keyword research, they have figured out some ways to "drive traffic" - and not only that they have learned how to turn a profit with that traffic - this (business) person starts to look for more and better ways to "drive more traffic" to their website(s).

Building Links Still Works

Now that the dust seems to have pretty much settled from the last horrific Google update it turns out that according to many "experts" (who have something to sell you) that building or buying links still works - you just can't go about it in a spammy way.

Tools of the new Spam

There are a few old (now refurbished) spam engines that one can use such as SENuke xcr (dangerous in the hands of someone who knows what they are doing - such as Becker), and the ever updating Synnd who seems real proud of their new video submission software, but seems unable to figure out how to game G+ and Facebook.

Maybe they just need better programmers to stay ahead of Facebook and Googles spam police.  (I'm sure there's a good article out there about that - probably on Wired Magazine or something)  Oh - here's one on Outspoken Media.

Are you Branding or Gaming Google?

I'm a big proponent of Branding.  I try and build all my sites without the thought of trying to please Google and get all of that free search traffic.  If I build something that is useful to people - answers their question(s) -  and generally leaves them satisfied - then I figure I don't have to do any work at all to get Googs attention.  If they favor me (my site) then great - but otherwise I still get traffic - and convert.

That's the idea anyway - but I too still occasionally find myself  "doing things the old way" - thus the title of this article.

Build A Brand While You're At It

There is a lot of noise out there about Branding, but one of the most succinct ones that is probably worth a read (by you - I already read (most) of it) is Brand Against The Machine by John Morgan.

Lots of good ideas in there.  Check it out.

But I Digress

So if you are trying to game Google should you build links (by article writing, outsourcing articles to be written, guest posting, and the like) or should you just go ahead and buy some links on high PR sites to help with your ranking?

The Answer

The answer to that question is.... I don't really know.  I really don't.  It depends what kind of person you are, and whether or not you've fallen into the "get rich quick - push button internet marketing" mindset or not.

If you are looking for a quick(er) payoff then go ahead and spend some money and buy some links - or use one of the spam engines like SENuke (although if you learn how to use it properly and not just build links directly to your site it can be effective - just use good content).

Just don't expect to build a long term stable business off of those links if you don't do it properly.  Plan to always be chasing the rainbow instead of "being the rainbow".

I should also note (again) that it can be a short term effective strategy and if used properly can really propel a site/business forward quickly - but it is important to have a quality Brand/Product at the end of your (spam helped) rainbow.

Chasing Rainbows

Not that there is anything wrong with chasing rainbows.  It's lot of fun.  Been doing it my whole life in one fashion or another.

What About Long Term Stable Income?

Not sure there is such a thing as a long term stable income anymore, but let's pretend for a moment that it exists.  How does one acquire it through "Internet Marketing"?

Build A Company That Will Last

Maybe it's time for you to stop going for the "one hit wonder" and start building a real business.  A business that will last.   A brand with a following.  How would one go about doing that?

Time and Money

It takes a little bit of time and money to build a brand and have it provide you with a "long term stable income".  Think of building a franchise.  Build something that you can duplicate.  Build yourself something with promotion worthy content like Kurt Simula talks about in this post at Mad Progress Marketing.

-- More resources to follow ---

Using Fiverr To Promote Your Business

Since I am a huge fan of - as a buyer - not (yet) a seller - I figured a few words about the site where you can "Hire people to do things for $5" were in order.

Cheap Labor

Talk about cheap labor.  I'll give you an example....

I own a lot of websites - lots.   Often times when I start a new project to "test the waters" and see if I can gain any traction in that market I don't worry too much about graphics and such, but more often that not - and especially lately - I'll start a new business/website with the intent of branding it right away.

How do you brand?

Well that's a multi answer question and if you really want to know you should read the book "Brand Against The Machine", but for the purpose of this discussion - one sided though it may be - is that (in my mind anyway) after coming up with the idea and seeing that it is worthwhile pursuing after some good keyword research and the like you should have a Logo.

Back to the cheap labor or fiverr idea....

I was paying up to $150.00 for a good logo before I found fiverr.  I am sure there are plenty of good graphic artists and business marketing companies - ad agencies and the like - that charge even more than that.

The thing is - you can get the same work done - often times even better work done - by people offering their services on fiverr.  Amazing!

I re-learned a hard and expensive lesson recently after re-doing 5 of my old sites that were just plugging along - mostly just information type sites - but good original content and consistent traffic, albeit not much.

I paid $25.00 to have five different logos/headers/branding graphics made for each of theses sites.   What I can tell you is that not only has my return visitor traffic increased, my customer's overall "time spent on the site(s)" has more than doubled and I have increased sales by a huge factor.

Now what does this all have to do with using fiverr to promote your business?

All of this (and the logo/graphics/branding thing is just a small part - you can get a lot of other types of website promotion done from those on fiverr willing to do it) got me to thinking.

How can I use fiverr to promote my own business(es) or broker some work (charge more and get it done for less) and make some (maybe big) money?

1) Maybe offer a service that I would normally charge $25 or $50 for - local client stuff, etc - Things that I would normally do myself or pay one of my employees to do - and farm out the work to those on fiverr - for five bucks!  Outsourcing.

2) What about offering a "loss leader" on fiverr for work that I do - and then in the follow up after the sale let them know that I have a website/business that not only does that kind of work - but a whole lot of other stuff too.  If you (or me - or anyone) can use fiverr in this way and attract clients I think in many cases it is well worth the money.

Not only is it cheap advertising - it's smart advertising.

Here's Fiverr's take on what they have to offer over there.

fiverr graphic


Now I know that's a lot to take in.  I also know that this is a bit of a rambling type post.  But I figured for those who have not heard about fiverr or for those who have but never really considered using them - either as a buyer or a seller - might want to take a second look and see what they have to offer.

My personal testimonial/review about them - as a buyer -  is that you sometimes have to go through a couple of people to find the ones that really satisfy.  If you do decide to hire someone just take a look at their satisfaction rating  and how long they have been offering the "gig".   The good ones will have positive reviews and a rating above 90%.

That's it for now.  I'm off to the lake.


Does SEO Still Work?

Things have changed a lot in the last 6 months or so in the internet marketing world - at least for those who built their business on the premise of getting free traffic (free advertising) from Google.

image of crying kidIt turns out that the big G didn't like getting gamed so they changed the way they rank sites.

What this means is that in many cases, people who were earning a living (sometimes a really good living) by getting free traffic to their websites by having a listing on the first page of the Google search results (that is no longer there) have been (almost) wiped out.

Boo Hoo...

I've said on this site - and others - that that was not a viable business model.  It was while it lasted - but as in most things in life, things change.

So what to do now?

There are some folks who say it is important to build a brand. (I'm in that camp)

There are others who say they have the search engine game figured out again.  One of those is Chris Rempel.  (nice guy, excellent marketer - he even commented regarding my thoughts on this matter down below)

Once in a while I make my way over to his Lazy Marketers blog to see what he has to say.

Chris feels that it is a total waste of time to try and build a brand because Google can just wipe your site out of its listing whenever they want.  This is true.  If all you ever do is try and game them. Which has been his business model from the beginning.  It's probably true that you can still game them - and says he has proof.  But why?

Ignore Google?

Why not just ignore Google?  If you happen to rank - great.  You get some free traffic.  If not, no big deal - because you are building a brand (and a customer base) that doesn't rely on Google.

Things are ever changing in not just the internet business, but in every kind of business.  If you want to make a living (and have a business that will last) by selling stuff to people you need to make them happy.  The thing about SEO in the past ie. gaming Google - was that you really didn't need to have a product that was all that good.  You just needed lots and lots of (free) traffic.  The percentages took care of themselves.

Now that it is much harder to "rank" in the SERPS - and that Google is putting more and more "paid" advertisements on their front page people are finding that they have to have an actual product that people are willing to pay for in order to make any money.

Can the SERPS still be gamed?

There are plenty of companies in the SEO business that will tell you that they have the "new secret key" for getting a site ranked on the first page of the SERPS.  This is still probably true.  But the days of using the search engines as a business model are drawing to a close.

I think that in less than five years SEO as a business model will pretty much be dead.  The search engines are very quickly becoming relegated to just another "app" that one downloads onto their smartphone or tablet.  One will still be able to get some traffic and business from them, it will just be a lot different in years to come.

Branding with Pinterest, Apps, and Others

Sites like Pinterest, You Tube, and others such as Instagram have come along and made it much easier to build a brand and drive traffic and in many cases paying customers right to your site.  One does not need Google anymore to make money online.

I'll write more in the future about how to ignore Google, build a brand - and still build an online business, but for now...

Good luck out there,


Self Motivation… and the List

Building a successful business at home using the internet as your playing field takes a fair amount of self motivation, and without a daily list of things to do one is hard pressed to make a living at it.

That's because most people need a boss to tell them what to do.  Let me explain.

You may say that you don't need a boss.  That you are self motivated.  That you don't need anyone to tell you what to do in order to accomplish something.  Great.  But I bet you still make a list of things to do don't you?  You might even be in the rare 1/2 of 1% who don't even need to write anything down in order to bring a project to its successful conclusion.

Either way, The List exists in some form.  If it does not, you are probably not even reading this far down the page.

I am a true believer in The List being the boss.  Obviously someone has to write the list.  If you are self employed, you are the one making the list after all.  You can justifiably call yourself  "your own boss".    Congratulations.  If you haven't leveraged every thing you own and all of your credit cards to the point that you are now just breaking even, I salute you.

If you are drowning in debt, having panic attacks, losing sleep at night, and generally feeling a sense of bewilderment about when things are going to change, then I suggest you cut your losses now, file bankruptcy if you have to, and start over.  Maybe all that you need is a debt settlement attorney.  Either way...

Yep.  Take your lumps.  Do it.  It will be the best thing you ever did.  Take it from someone who's been there.  Find yourself a bankruptcy attorney that you can afford (they will negotiate), and stick your middle finger to all of those who believed in you.  That you gave your word to.

Yeah.  It sucks.

If you know deep down inside, that your current business model has no chance of succeeding, even with five more years of 12 hour days and a lot of luck then it is time to pull the plug.  Shed some tears if you have to.  You'll come out better in the end.  Trust me.

Okay.  All of that out of the way, I have a few more things to say about that Damn List.

Building a business online, or anywhere else takes an awful lot of time and energy.  I don't care about all of those emails you get from the self sanctifying gurus who tell you otherwise.

Those guys are full of shit.

Everyone of them.

Not that they don't have something good to say.  A lot if their ideas have some value.  But if you are buying everything that comes along that is called something along the lines of Emergency Money Machines and wondering why you aren't able to make money online, I will tell you.


A list is a plan of action.  That you follow. The list is your boss.

I have yet to buy an online money making course that actually gave me a list of things to do.  Yeah, they might talk about this or that, and give you a general direction to go in, but I have yet to see 1-2-3 and A-B-C.   Save for the Keyword Academy.

Even as much as I respect Fraser at Keyword Strategy, his stuff is for the middle and upper tier marketers who already have something going on.  There is a place for all of it.  I pay both the KWA and KWS monthly because they provide me value.  And they are honest.

I still occasionally work a 10 or 12 hour day.  It is exhilarating.  But the thing is... two years full time in internet marketing , and a previous decade of 16 hour days and another 100 dollars in debt (every day) for the effort ( and a couple of bankruptcies) has taught me a few things.  One thing in particular.

I need a list.

A list of things to do.  Otherwise I barely get anything done.

You should have one too.

Without The List, I would not be making a living at home, in my man cave, without anyone to answer to but myself (and occasionally my wife).

All the best,

Jack Folsgood


Text Message Marketing For Small Businesses

I figured it was about time to write a little bit about text message marketing for small businesses. Every once in a while it seems that there is something that many people start saying is the "next big thing".  The whole idea of sms marketing, or mobile marketing for small business caught my eye so I decided to do a little bit of investigating .

I had looked at the concept a while back and found the companies that were offering this type of service were poorly lacking in their ability to get the concept across to all of the small businesses across the country.  Even though that is no longer true, the thing it seems is that there are very few salespeople actually "taking it to the streets" and telling small business owners about the incredible effects that this type of advertising can have on their bottom line.

Every business owner who has done any kind of advertising knows how difficult it can be to get customers in the door.  What is especially hard is to reach the younger crowd.   The 18 -34 age group has grown up differently with technology than even those who are as young as 40.

Here are the facts about text message marketing for small businesses to know.  And take advantage of.

A recent eMarketer study noted that 66% of 18-44 year old adults said they were somewhat likely to try mobile coupons. 31% said they would be willing to give their mobile number in exchange for mobile coupons. When you reduce the age range to 18-34 year adults, the number jumps to 50% willing to receive coupons on their mobile phone by giving their number to a business.

Great.  That is all good and fine, but what exactly is a "mobile coupon"?

When I first heard the term I pictured having to have one of those fancy smart phones with some sort of printing device in order to print out the coupon and take it in to whatever store I wanted to redeem the coupon with!   Nothing could be further from the truth.

What mobile coupons are all about is simply having a customer that voluntarily signed up and receive text messages from you with your  latest offers.  That's it!  That is what text message marketing is all about.

From the Moto Message Blog :  "Being able to target 50% of your customers may not seem like much but when you consider redemption rates it becomes very attractive. Let’s compare this to email marketing as an example. Say you have a customer base of 1000 consumers on your email list and 500 on a text marketing list. Sending the same offer to each list will result in an average 3% redemption rate from the email list or 30 customers and an average redemption rate from mobile of 15% or 150 customers. Mobile marketing ROI is much higher even with a smaller customer list."

You can be sure that people's willingness to "opt-in" to receive coupons from just about any business will continue to grow.  One of the reasons that this is such a growing business is that it is so new.  Only 3% of people with a smart phone have opted in to receive text messages or mobile coupons from their favorite businesses.  Isn't it time for you to take advantage of such a young and growing market?

One of my buddies has written an excellent article about mobile marketing for small business.  The article and site in general provides information and resources for starting your own sms promotion broadcast, or text message marketing campaigns.