Following on from the Virtual Income series debut, a two part interview with Chris Carpenter, the author of one of the definitive AdWords guides Google Cash, Blogcritics writer Christopher Rose gets his hands dirty learning the ideas in Newbie Cash Machine, one of the many products from one of the most well known internet business pioneers, Singapore based Ewen Chia.
Amongst other achievements, Ewen is as famous for his own money-making exploits as he is respected for his desire to help others learn how to earn their own online income through his public speaking appearances and his many informative e-books.
Ewen Chia's Newbie Cash Machine is exactly what the title says; an easy to follow, step by step guide, for people with no previous experience, to making money on the internet by focusing on your own strengths and interests. Of course, untold wealth won't come flowing your way by just wanting it. Desire is vitally important but has to be backed up by the willingness to do a little hard work in order to prime the pump and this e-book — a $27 downloadable PDF — will show you how to do it.
Over the course of over 140 pages, Ewen explains both the big picture context within which this takes place and all the basic principles to using the approach of drawing upon your own interests to become a trusted source of information and expertise and earn money based upon that relationship. As Ewen writes in his introduction, "Earning money online is easy when you understand how to choose the right market, target products for that market and convert prospects into customers… It's really a 1-2-3 process consisting of a product offer, targeted traffic and good sales copy". Lest this all starts to sound too easy, there is also the caveat that you must make a real commitment to learning the lessons, focusing on understanding how it all connects together and of course, actually taking action by implementing a daily action plan.
Although there are three types of products that can be offered online – physical goods from cars to clothes; digital products and services like e-books, videos, podcasts and membership sites; and finally intangible monetization models based on internet traffic and advertising, such as our own dear Blogcritics – Chia's approach focuses on the second model, answering people's constant search for helpful and useful information.
As he explains, "people use the internet as a research tool prior to making a purchase… This hunger for information is going to be your key to making real money online… by becoming an information provider". It might seem difficult at first to imagine yourself as someone who can provide useful information but almost everybody knows how to do something, home decoration, how to fix a car, lose weight, how to juggle or whatever. People looking to find out how to do things like this will actually pay good money to someone they trust to help them achieve their ambitions or interests. "Your goal is to provide people with information that is truly valuable".
If you think this is all a bit ambitious to start with, it is also possible to make money and easier to get started by acting as a middleman or affiliate, placing yourself between potential buyers and the actual sellers of information products and Ewen explains how to go about that in just enough detail. He explains the definition of affiliate marketing, how and why it all works, which companies to sign-up with, the required skills and tools – and, crucially, how to acquire and implement those skills and tools.
Pre-selling is one of the key techniques to getting a prospect warmed up and ready to buy before you actually present them with an opportunity to do so. If you are selling your own information directly, you need to build a relationship of trust in yourself as someone who knows what they are talking about. If you are acting as an affiliate, you would focus on getting the prospects to trust your judgement in recommending someone else's products, such as by writing a series of reviews. The very article you are reading right now is in fact an act of pre-selling as by accepting my recommendation of Ewen's e-book, you are more likely to buy it. Rest assured though that there is no affiliate offer in this honest and objective review, although Ewen does indeed offer that possibility!
Having explained the context within which we newbies will operate, the author then goes on to spell out, in a detailed but easy to follow ten step process, exactly how to go about it. These steps include how to find a hot market to target: how to find three profitable affiliate programmes in your market; how to set up a website and email auto-response system; how to get a constant stream of traffic; and, most importantly, how to build a quality relationship with your site's visitors.
Ewen concludes by spelling out the importance of consistency and sticking with it. There is no point at all in investing time and money in this process if you're not prepared to stick with it but if you do, a constant stream of money can come your way for only a few hours work each week. Of course, once having got the hang of it, it's increasingly easy to repeat the process in a different market sector or introduce your own information product for even higher profitability.
There are a few minor points that Ewen doesn't get completely right, such as not taking into account how seriously the search engines mark down duplicate content articles and, in his otherwise fine explanation of using Google Adsense, he uses an example that wouldn't actually get any traffic for your site but these don't seriously devalue the usefulness of his techniques.
If there is a particular subject you're really interested in and either a pre-existing product exists you can sell as an affiliate or, even better, an original report or other product you can create yourself, Ewen Chia's Newbie Cash Machine system is as clear and useful a guide to how you can earn money online through your own natural interests as you can find.