AFP 4: How To Find And Fund Your True Passion
I wish more of my days were spent with my girlfriend island hopping around Cebu but, unfortunately, sometimes the work just HAS to be done. In this episode, Joe and I discuss the realistic fact that building niche websites is not a passion for either of us.
So How Do You Find and Fund Your Passion?
You hear quite often from so many that you have to “find your passion” to be successful, but that’s simply not true. Ok, it’s true for the 1% of business owners out there that are revolutionizing the world, but you can be plenty successful without being outrageously passionate about your “core” business. If you’re like most of us, you’ll benefit from this podcast if you’re struggling with the fact that what you’re doing is not terribly exciting, but you’re looking for a way to earn money to do what you REALLY want to do.
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As mentioned in this episode, we have a winner for our Niche Site Giveaway! Congratulations to Jerry Babcock on the win! Let’s get in contact soon so that we can transfer you your new website! Want to check us out on itunes? Here’s the link to the podcast on iTunes. Thanks to everyone for the reviews and subscriptions!
Podcast Transcripts (Click Show to View)
Welcome back to the 4th Episode of the AdSense Flippers Podcast. My name is Justin Cooke. I’m your host. I’ve got my co-captain here, my business partner extraordinaire, Joe Magnotti. What’s up buddy?
Hey everybody! How are you doing? Happy new year!
Yeah! Happy new year! It’s been a while since we did the last podcast. It’s been about a month, so really excited to be back on here with you guys. I just want to go over the program really bit. Today we’re going to be talking about finding your passion in day to day tasks that simply aren’t that interesting. You run into that a lot with niche sites. I think it’s something that’s definitely worth covering. We also want to go over some news and updates on the front end of the program and in the back, we’ve got some great ninja marketing tips, tricks and plans for our future that we want to go over. So let’s get right into it. We’re really excited to say we have over 3,000 readers now on AdSense Flippers on our blog and through our podcast. That’s a really big number, especially since we just started the blog in May. Thank you for everyone whose part of our reader base and we hope to continue giving you the same great content you’ve been used to so far. And the other thing is, we have over 39 reviews right now on iTunes, 38 of those are five star reviews. I can’t tell you how exciting that is for us. It’s just awesome. One of the things we also want to let you know about, is in the last podcast, we mentioned a free niche site giveaway. We’ve now done a random drawing and we have a winner. We wanted to announce that to you. Jerry Bobcock, thank you for your review and subscription. You are the winner of the niche site giveaway.
Congratulations Jerry! You can thank me. I pulled your name out of the virtual hat.
So, we’ll be offering you that site and getting contact to hear with you soon. The other thing we want to go over was the intern position for AdSense Flippers.
Yeah. We have 17 applicants and we’re moving to the interview phase. You will be receiving your email probably over the next 48 hours and we are looking really to getting this thing started, getting somebody in the house and getting them working on the projects as quickly as possible.
I’m excited about having them add to our business. You know what I mean? So we’re giving them an opportunity where they can move overseas and really change their life but they’re going to do that on the cheap. There’s some growing pains. They’re going to take their knocks by getting involved and making less money but we’re basically affording them an opportunity to break away from the 9 to 5, right?
We’re going to move quick. They’re going to come here. There’s going to be some training. There’s going to be some setup. But we’re going to expect results too.
So that’s really exciting. And then, the webinar.
Yeah. We had a webinar with the Dynamite Circle. It was a private webinar for Dynamite Circle members only. I think it went really well, similar to podcast episode 2 where we covered our story. But really, we want to break now into a public setting and start doing on-going series on niche sites and niche site tips and tricks and maybe even step people through the process.
Yeah. The thing I really liked about it is we were able to interact with the people, especially towards the end, right, the Q&A section where maybe a bit more difficult to do that via the blog or comments or emails or whatever. So, being able to have that interaction I think is really cool. I love to do more of those. Hopefully, we can get a couple more webinars in over the next couple of months.
Yeah. I definitely think so. Maybe even like virtual workshops. That’s how I’m trying to think about it now.
The other thing I want to mention. This is our last podcast that we are able to get away men. We’re able to take a nice little break. We ran off to Singapore. I was there for 5 or 6 days and then you joined me and we headed down to Bali to hang out with Dan and Ian from Tropical and VA lifestyle business podcast and then some of the other guys there, Cody McKibben from Thrilling Heroics and some other guys. It was great to meet all those guys and get to hang out a bit, talk some business strategy.
Yeah. Bali is really cool. I highly recommend it. Singapore is nice too but men, is it expensive.
Yeah. One of the things I want to mention though, in Singapore, that I love, we’re able to meet with person I think is an absolute hero to me. I think he puts out A+ content, is Derek Sivers. You probably ran across him before. If you haven’t, definitely check out our site or go to Sivers.org and check out some of the content he put out. But, he was the owner, creator of CDBaby, sold his company and moved out to Singapore. So we got some time to spend with him a couple hours. That was amazing for me.
Yeah. It was pretty cool. We got to get some good stuff. Pick his brain a little bit about where we’re at and get some cool info.
So let’s go right into the heart of this week’s episode.
****The Adsense Flippers Podcast****
Alright men! So a lot of times, people talk about trying to figure out what it is you’re going to do with your business, what niche you should get in to and they say follow your passion.
Yeah. It’s very cliché.
Yeah. Do something you love to do and the money will follow, right? And that’s true for some people but not for most of us, right? So you’ll see like the top people, the real leaders of their industry, the real innovators, they pushed through diversity to get it done.
Yeah. They were able to make it to the top of their industry and really make breakout changes. Well, 99% of us aren’t those people, right? We’re not those people. We’re not coming up with these amazingly innovative strategies. So we’re kind of stuck doing things that are not that interesting. GreenBoyShoes.net, doesn’t get me fired up, right Joe?
It does not.
I see you laughing at me right now. So, these are the types of things that we need to do day in and day out, we need to write content for these type of sites. We have to link build to these types of sites. And it’s just not that exciting. In our trip, when we went to Singapore, we talked to Derek Sivers and I’m thinking to myself, “Wow! This is a guy who revolutionized the music industry, made independent music available to the masses and allow them to get their names out there.” That’s making a difference, to me, right? That’s what I think. Wow, that’s amazing. And I felt kind of bad talking to the guy about our business, right? I was like, “Well, I kind of do niche sites and we make some money with AdSense and we sell some of those sites to people and that’s kind of what we do.” I felt bad about it because I was like, it’s going to be more than that, that’s not really all we’re doing. Since then, I’ve been thinking about it going, “Do I feel really great about what I’m doing? Like does that really make a difference?” Not really, right?
Yeah. But then you got to think about, “Okay. He’s this awesome guy, awesome entrepreneur, this awesome online hero of yours, but day to day, from what I understand, he’s life was lock himself in a room and coding all the features of CDBaby until he got it to where he wanted it.
Yeah. What did he do, right? If you ask him, “Well, I sold CD’s. I put CD’s on a website people bought them.” That’s not terribly earth shattering either, right, and the day to day activities that he had to go through to get there, not glamorous. He’s not doing these amazing things and speaking at TED while he’s building up his business. So, he went on to do those things later and I think that’s key. So after leaving Singapore, we went to Bali, we talked to Dan and Ian from Lifestyle Business podcast and we talked to them a bit about our niche sites of course. And they said, “Wow! We love what you’re doing. We think what you’re doing is amazing. You’re giving people with 9 to 5 jobs a way to buy in to the business. The people that have a bit of money that want to try it out but don’t want to spend all the time trying to figure it out. You’re giving them an opportunity here.”
Yeah. It’s all about perspective, right? Because Dan really put it in perspective when he said that, when he said you’re allowing people to buy in to the dream, front and center, they don’t have to do the work. If they don’t want to, they don’t understand it, they just go out there, buy one of your sites, and wham, they’re making passive income on the internet.
And talking to them, right? What are they doing? They’re basically having these silly products that other people have, they’re having them manufactured and then they’re selling them via websites to people in the US. That’s their business. That’s how they make their money.
Yeah. It’s hard to be positive about cat furniture.
Yeah. It’s not terribly exciting. I sell cat furniture, right? That’s what I do for a living. But that’s not how you frame it, right? And I think that’s the key is that there are things that you have to do in your day to day that are boring, that don’t make a lot of sense, that aren’t really exciting for you long-term. But if you frame it the right way and like look at the long-term goal on what you want to do, you can be passionate about that, right? So, I think that’s key is that you are going to be stuck doing day to day stuff. But if you’re going to frame it correctly and you have a long-term vision, you can meet that long-term vision through the day to day monotony. Look, if you’re listening to this podcast or you follow AdSense Flippers, you’re probably not one of those that’s looking to work the 9 to 5 for the next 25 to 30 years and to retire on the beach somewhere, right? It’s about the journey Joe. It’s about enjoying yourself and finding passion in the journey. And I’ll tell you. If we had to simply do niche sites day in day out for the next 25 to 30 years and retire, I would go insane.
Yeah. So you take that concept and you say how could apply to anyone. Well, the boring day to day allows you to be passionate about your other avenues, your creative avenues.
Yeah. I think it’s important, okay, because our outsourcing company might be like some of our listeners or readers jobs. They had to work their job and we weren’t terribly passionate about that but we had to do it. We had to continue with the clients that we had so we can make enough money to fund other ventures. But the important thing though is still making sure you’re doing output, right, making sure your putting out stuff. So, if you’re not doing output and you simply work the job and do a little bit on the side but you’re not really making connections or putting stuff out there, you’re not going to have those paths opened up to you, you’re not going to have the opportunities to present themselves the way that they do when you are putting good output and connecting with people. So that’s all well and good Joe. That sounds great but how do you get this done, how do you actually focus on implementing changes that are going to get you where you need to be.
I think you need to be a little higher level, right? You need to be idealistic and you need to say, “What is my mission statement?”
Yeah. You need to have a mission statement which we don’t have.
We talked about this. I think it’s a problem for our business that we don’t have a mission statement on what, where we want to be idealistic and what we want to accomplish, right? And all the small stuff just gets us there. So, I think establishing a mission statement is important for your business, whether it’s on the side, whether you’re creating niche sites on the side or you’re doing some other kind of business that you want to break away from your regular day job, it’s important to know like what your long-term goal is and where you find your passion.
Yeah. And this is not the 30 second elevator speech. This is more the vision. This is like the direction of the company that can be summed up in one or two sentences.
We found, I think, really successful for us is keeping ourselves open to new experiences, new ideas and we get contacted on a regular basis via email or us reaching out to other people asking about their business, just trying to be helpful with their business, give them ideas, share experiences we’ve had with outsourcing, that kind of thing and it leaves us extremely open to all this new paths. Paths that make a difference to me that I think will make a difference to other people. So even though we’re writing these niche sites and ordering content and finding the keywords by connecting with others, it gives me these other pathways that I can do things that are fun, interview on online income lab with Trent I thought was fantastic the other day.
Yeah. And that kind of flexibility can only come from running your own company. You can’t do that if you’re sitting behind a desk 9 to 5 working on somebody else’s stuff.
Yeah. You couldn’t hire an intern, fly them half way around the world and work on changing their life and helping them build their business. Those are things that we’re passionate about. If we’re able to do that for someone and get them up to speed and get them to be able to live anywhere, work anywhere, that’s just amazing, right? We didn’t change a lot of people’s lives but we changed that person’s life.
Yeah. I think people will hear that story and then they will be more likely to contact us with other life changing ideas. It’s the idea that’s the important stuff here. It’s not the day to day, the little nitty-gritty details.
Yeah. I think it’s important too to also like foresee other potential pivots. We may not always be doing niche sites and we may move to authority sites, we may change from an AdSense monetization method, we may stop selling sites, we know that some of those options are out there and that exist and that we may have to go on that direction. Also, anything that we really find passionate about or that we’re interested in, we will chase after those because we’ve got the money maker, we’ve got something that’s going along, that’s scaling up and it’s going well, right? So it allows you the opportunity to chase after things that you’re more interested in. Now, we’re working on our mission statement Joe. Over the next couple of weeks, couple of months, we’re going to have one that’s idealistic, that gets us where we want to be and explores our passions and what we want to do with our business.
So, we will be sharing that with you over the coming weeks and months and we’re really looking for feedback on whether you think it’s realistic, it’s idealistic, it’s not too shallow, it’s high level enough for where we want to take this.
Yeah. Don’t expect it to be something like Google don’t do evil. But, it will be a little more specific than that.
****The Adsense Flippers Podcast continues****
So let’s get right into the ninja marketing tips, tricks and plans. What do you got for us buddy?
You know Justin, I was looking at our sites here today and I noticed it’s a new feature in Google Analytics that allows you to measure the speed of your sites. I was thinking about how to improve that because some of our sites were a little bit slow even though they’re lightweight and it’s not too many on one hosting plan. Some of them are a little bit slow and I think that’s due to WordPress and database and what not. So I looked into some of these caching plug-ins that are out there and I found 2, thanks to a reader who turned me on to it, he’s name is Paul, called Hyper Cache and DB Cache Reloaded Fix. Hyper Cache is very cool, very easy to use, you can use the default options, it’s available for free on the WordPress platform and DB Cache Reloaded Fix, make sure you find the DB Cache Reloaded Fix not DB Cache Reloaded or just DB Cache, they’re different, the latest one works with the latest version of WordPress and is continually supported. So, if you put those 2 plug-ins on your WordPress site, you can definitely reduce your page load time by up to 20%.
Is that about what we got buddy 20%?
Yeah. We got about 20% increase. If you can get page load time under 5 seconds, that’s good.
And of course using WP Manage, you can do that across the board relatively easily on all of our sites.
Right. So, if you have 300 sites to install it on, you use something like Manage WP, then you can go ahead and do that.
So the next tip men is email and you and I are both email fanatics, I get a little frustrated with how many emails I get and dealing with them sometimes I just throw my hands in the air. But, we’ve got a couple of tips that we found that are really helpful.
Yeah. I have 15 years’ worth of email in my email database. So, it’s nice to have it searchable and of course it’s all in Gmail now. I tried, I converted over from Outlook a few years ago. But more importantly is this little piece of software we’ve picked up that allows you to know a little bit about the sender of an email. And, we got this from a piece of software called Xobni which was on the Outlook platform and allows you to look up senders of email in your PSC file and brought in good pieces of information about them on the internet, that kind of thing.
I used Xobni when we were Outlook guys, when we did a lot of Microsoft Outlook. And, it just slowed me down too much, men. That was my problem. So, I tried Xobni again on the cloud through Gmail, and I found it pretty useful, it was kind of cool.
It’s a little clunky. The interface is not great. I didn’t like it that much and then you found an alternative, Justin, right?
Yeah. Pat Flynn mentioned it. He mentioned about Reportive, I think one of his readers mentioned it to him, turned him on to it and then I tried it out as well. It has all the same features as Xobni, doesn’t mess up as much as Xobni and it also has your…
Yeah. Yeah. Yeah. Yeah.
It’s extendable. That’s the nice thing about Reportive over Xobni is it’s very extendable, there are these different types of plug-ins that you can use like Facebook, LinkedIn, A-Weber if you have a lists so you can see if the person who is writing you an email is subscribed to one of your lists. That’s really nifty features and plus the EY is clean, it fits right into Gmail, it doesn’t get in the way and I like it a lot.
Yeah. That’s one of the things I hate is when I get this random email from someone I don’t know and then I don’t know anything about them and they don’t let me know anything about them. So this really helps with that. It gives you an idea on like who you’re dealing with and who you’re talking to before you reply so you have an idea on like maybe how they know you or how you guys are connected or that type of thing. It’s extremely helpful and you also can put notes in there about the person. So, if you contacted them about this, you can put a little note in there, the next time it pops up, you’ll have that note and you can refer to that, you can like refresh your memory on who they are. It’s a really neat tool.
Well that’s it for Episode 4 of the AdSense Flippers Podcast. Thanks so much for having you with us. You can follow us on Twitter @AdSenseFlippers. We’ll also put links to everything we talked about today in the show notes on our blog at AdSenseFlippers.com so make sure to check that out.
Yeah. You get some links to the plug-ins I was talking about and to Reportive for sure. Happy New Year everybody! Here’s to a prosperous 2012. See you soon.
Topics Discussed Include:
- Happy New Year!
- The Winner for the Niche Site Giveaway
- The AdSense Flippers Intern Position – We’ve narrowed it down to the final applicants
- Webinars coming soon
- How the day to day internet marketing can kill your spirit
- Framing what you do can change your perspective and keep you motivated
- Output and connections can lead you to channels you’re passionate about
- Ninja Marketing Tips: How to significantly increase the speed of your websites
- AdSense Flippers Podcast on iTunes
- Derek Sivers – Sivers.org.
- Lifestyle Business Podcast
- Cody McKibben – ThrillingHeroics.com
- TED – Really amazing thinkers and speakers talking about things that matter. Check it out!
- TOMS Shoes – I didn’t mention this in the podcast, but a GREAT example of someone who does something amazing even though his company “just sells shoes”. Read about them here
- Our Interview with Trent from OIL – Great interview about how to sell websites on Flippa for top dollar. Click here for interview
- Our plan for 2012
- Hyper Cache
- DB Cache Reloaded Fix
Podcast: Play in new window | Download
Thanks for sharing. There are a lot of ‘gurus’ out there who tell you to do your passion but you actually can if not careful waste a lot of time and not make a cent. That’s what happened to me on a niche website of which I was very passionate about. Like some, I read the google competition wrong on google adwords tool and picked a keyword with no advertisers, yet it had little competition. Lessons learned! Now I know how it works though!
Keep up the podcasts. I like how you giuys are open and honest about your mistakes. Your on of my new favorites! Keep up the great work!
You’re DEFINITELY not the first to make the mistake, thinking that “low competition” on the Google Keywords Tool is referring to SEO competition…it’s not…it’s referring to the number of advertisers for that keyword, of course! 🙂
We definitely think that if your passion is around a niche or keywords that can make you money…go for it! But they have to have a chance at profitability FIRST. I’m a big fan of Android phones…but I wouldn’t follow my “passion” there with our niche sites as I don’t think it would be easily monetized via AdSense and isn’t in-line with our business goals.
Great podcast as ever…. what was the alternative to Xobni you used? I looked at Reportive but that seems to be a Reporting tool for large companies.
You have the spelling incorrect. It Rapportive.
Hi Joe and Justin,
This is to respond to your latest newsletter.
It would be great if you guys could create an authority site and record the whole process like what Pat did in his Niche Site Dual. Such kind of case study really helps people a lot. It is not only informative but most importantly, encouraging! So if you guys can create your own version of niche site dual, that will be great! Oh, you may also include the part of SELLING the site on Flippa. I believe no one has written that before with a live example.
Also, I would love to read a post about rank tracker products review. You know we have Market Samurai Rank Tracker, Scroogle, SEOBook.com Firefox plugin rank tracker, etc. But they NEVER show the exact same result! It would be great if you can recommend some rank tracking tools for us, both paid and unpaid ones.
Another topic could be the future of internet marketing. Do you think it is bright or gloomy? It is getting easier and easier to become an internet marketer. Will this industry become more and more competitive? How about the demand side of it?
Lastly, I think a link building case study would be very interesting. In fact, electron plumber, which is a blog that I love to read, conducts a great link building experiment, comparing Unique Article Wizard, Build My Rank and other paid services. Throughout the process, not only do readers learn a lot, but also the writer! Perhaps you can earn a little bit more affiliate, too!
This is all I can think of regarding your questions! Thanks for asking our comments and l look forward to your next post!
We have done some authority site creation without much success. For the investment we made, we might as well created more niche site. We might look at this again in the future however.
For rankings, we feel your pain and generally use Scroogle as an accurate baseline for ranking, though Market Samurai is great for automated rankings.
I think the future of IM is bright and I am not usually such an optimist. Why? Search will continue to grow, meaning long tail searches will increase making it easier to find niches that are not overly competitive. The rules will change and we all will have to adapt our processes, but this is a good thing.
As for link building, we are doing some increased testing right now and will get back to with some results.
Joseph, What was the speed of your sites again? and could you please provide the links to the cache plugins will be great? Thank you
Under 5 seconds on average. Links are up above, but here they are again:
Do you use them both on one installation? Or is that impossible.
Sure you can use both right from the beginning no problem. One caches the HTML and the other the DB making for a good combination of plugins.
I was wondering if you guys use the same theme for every site, or if you change it up?
Using CTR Theme you can customize the look and feel of each site so they don’t all look the sam e(i.e. different headers and colors). In general though we use either CTR Theme or ProSense.
I also wanted to mention that I picked up the ManageWP that you suggested and it’s AWESOME. It saves me so much time logging in since I’m managing about 50 websites right now. It’s a true time saver and worth the price tag.
I also checked out Long Tail Pro, and it looks really useful for finding niches. However I’m a Mac user and I hate using parallels. I’m considering getting a PC just to run Long Tail Pro on. Of course outsourcing the process would be much better.
I think one of the biggest roadblocks for Internet marketers trying to create niche sites is finding the niches to enter. This stops a lot of people cold in their tracks. A niche finding service is something that I think a lot of people would pay for.
Also, I’d be interested in how you are using the Adsense API to pull adsense statistics. Is this a plugin? Did you have it especially developed? Is it for sale?
Keep up the good work, as you have inspired me to continue growing my empire.
Thanks Mike glad you liked ManageWP!
Long Tail Pro should run on a Mac as it uses the adobe Air platform. I’m not 100% sure though a I am a PC only guy.
I think it would be worth getting a discount code for Long Tail Pro again and sending it out to your list. It’s really a great tool.
Yes…LTP is a damn good tool. We had quite a few signups and very few returns which tells me it worked out quite well for most people. It’s not terribly robust, but it gets the job done and gets us the niches we need…that’s all it has to do, right? Hehe
Hey Mike – LTP works on a Mac. It’s Adobe Air based. Mac is all we use and LTP works fine! Good luck!
I posted a review for the competition but in my iTunes (UK) there are only 3 for December. Did you include these in the hat or did they not show up in the US iTunes store (as US reviews are not showing here on the UK store)
We had quite a few reviews in December and all of the reviews were included in the drawing. We did pick a winner and announced it in the podcast and in our latest income report!
Like the podcast and interview with Trent. Looks like you guys will be crushing it in 2012 ; )
Thanks Zach! More to come soon!
What was the plugin that increased your site speed?
DB Cache Reloaded Fix
You need both for it to work effectively. Saw a 15-20% increase across the board.
You guys mentioned that you might stop selling your niche sites. I was wondering what would drive that decision?
I think you might have misheard us. We have no intention of stopping the sale of niche sites. In fact we intend to ramp it up!
Happy new year Guys. have an epic 2012.
Lots of usefull snippets in your podcast as always.
Thanks Steve, we are looking forward to it!