This forumla you have makes sense for some people, but not all. Case in point – I went to a college in the midwest that no one has heard of, graduated with a 3.2 GPA, and at the age of 29 closed the year with a $110k salary. My boyfriend went to one of the top 10 public institutions in the country, graduated with a 3.8 GPA, and last year earned about $20k. Yes, having a degree from a top-tier institution may have increased my current salary even more, but I think had I gone that route I would have went into a less exciting career and given myself less chances to fail. Instead, with my average academic background, I’ve been able to live out many careers in my 20s – as a business journalist, and then in a variety of roles in startups where I could put my writing skills to use. I learned how to negotiate and that’s why I’m making six figures today (and I also have a sizable stock package that could be worth more a few years down the road.) My salary clearly has nothing to do with my academic performance. Sure, Google would never hire me because I don’t meet their hiring criteria, but who needs Google when you can start out as one of the first employees of a startup and help make that startup worth hundreds of millions of dollars?
when we born with nothing. so do not expect many things. when going home, we will leave everything behind. so be happy what we get. and you will no stress. be contend and will be healthy and safe. too many things we want, it will give us stress. if be contended you will no argue and no troubled in life. stress causes by greed. and many other factors. like people around us. we always want to prove to others we are rich and powerful. never mine get less is ok. just enough will do. too rich you will worry people… Read more »
I was really surprised not to see unions mentioned at all in this article! You talk about steps and lanes a little but what raises the wage is the collective bargaining process which doesn’t means unions get everything they want but they have a lot more power and knowledge about the employer’s financial position than an at-will worker bargaining on their own.
Use Deep Links – these are pages on your affiliate’s website that AREN’T the homepage. For SiteGround’s hosting I link a lot to their speed technology page as an affiliate link. If you’re doing Amazon’s affiliate program you just want to gather a list of products you will be recommending to readers, create an affiliate link for each one, and import them to the plugin.
It’s a good excuse you make not being smart enough (getting into great schools isn’t just academics), however I just listed 24 companies above you can apply to which will make you six figures, and 15 business schools to apply to as well. And if you can’t get into any of them, there are hundreds of other companies in those fields which pay just as well. And if you can’t get into any of those hundreds of companies, check out this whole section for you:
Love this story! I finished college in 3 years back in the 80’s because of AP/community college credits and stayed another year to finish my Master’s degree (which was required in my state for professional certification). And I swam fast and got money to help each year. I also got my entire doctorate paid for which was awesome! Not an engineer though – a teacher, but still got me to FI earlier than many!
Interesting article and dialogue. I went to a lower end UC, and graduated in Political Science, a major which doesnt pay right away. I instead got into direct sales for a cable company and made 130k my first year out of college by selling cable door to door. I made even more the second year. Been there for fooir years now – earning 100k-150k but dont see it going mucb higher. Not sure what to do to hit that next level. Toying with the idea of going ack for my MBA to take that next leap of faith but its hard to leave my income and incure a 100k debt for a goood business school. I agree, being motivated, working hard, being positive, not being a hard partier- but a hRd worker has helped me reach that sox figure mark. Thanks for the article.

I really liked this article. I found it full of good information. I would like some advice from FS as I definitely fit into one of these categories. I have a B.S. from a good university and I have a good job in the medical field making $45k right now with the posibility of 1-5% raises every year. I know I am capable of doing and earning more. I made A’s, B’s, and C’s as a college student without really trying. I’ve considered getting a masters in buisness, but I don’t have a clear vision of what I would do with that. I can’t afford to waste time or money on a second degree if it isn’t going to earn me substantially more money. I have a wife and daughter and work full time. I am constantly looking for ways to make more money. Do you have any advice for me? Thank you.


Thanks for the tips, Tiffany! It was very helpful. I just started my blog about a month ago and just signed up for Shareasale. I do have a further question. Do you know what blog post on Shareasale’s blog, gives me the best information in getting started and what I need to do? I am finding it hard to navigate my way through and really get an idea of the best way to start. It’s all quite overwhelming. Or is there a post that you have to guide me better?

I sometimes question choosing a career that was safe and paid well over chasing my passions. In a way, it comes down to passions now or passions later. If you earn big and save you can FIRE and the start your passion work then. Or you can be working on your (presumably lower paying) passions all along and wait until a more traditional age to retire.


There are plenty of different avenues you can take to breach that magical six figure mark. Doctors and lawyers routinely make multiple six figures. Longshoremen (dockworker) average $120,000 a year as we discovered during the Oakland longshoremen strike in 2001. After 20 years at the Federal government, police force, and fire department, the majority of workers all make $100,000+. Not only that, their capitalized pensions are worth millions!
Hi! I'm Kate, the founder of Root + Revel, a food and wellness site delivering inspiration to help people live naturally, without sacrifice. After reversing my PCOS and Leaky Gut with food and holistic remedies (no prescriptions), I started R+R to share what I've learned on this incredible journey. Food Heals! I'm living proof. But that doesn't mean bland chicken and steamed broccoli. Taste is paramount here and we’re taking it back to basics and infusing beauty, flavor and celebration into everyday life, helping you strike the balance between good and good for you. Read More…
Now for a dose of cold water, I got straight A’s in high school, but I was born poor and in a small town. Neither my parents nor I or anyone else had high money. We had enough to get by month to month. After school education was out of the question just based on cost alone. I had few choices but to join Uncle Sam and his merry band of sailors, painting and scrubbing decks around the world. I served my country until I decided to leave the navy-He guess what happened, no jobs for a former sailor with considerable weapons system experience. I spent three years homeless and destitute and hanging onto faded views of honor and discipline. Point being is that you put out all this financial stuff about straight A’s and good grades but you have not lived in the real world. Good grades don’t mean anything when you don’t have any money and don’t believe the hype about the GI BILL. What a joke of a program-Fraud and red tape to make you blush. Get real, I invite you to find a way to save my failing mortgage and invigorate my financial future. I don’t think you the writer of this webpage could, I owe in excess of 200 grand on a bad mortgage and im about to lose it. I can tell you everything about weapons systems, that’s what I was trained to do and I have lived a violent life. If any of this get rich quick stuff actually worked we would all be millionaires. Later
Hey guys. Great post with detailed, actionable content. I would like to add my ‘2 cents’ if that’s ok. You are absolutely right with offering a ‘free gift’ in exchange for someone’s name and email address but I have found short reports have worked best for me. If you give away too much information for free they don’t tend to get consumed so the trust isn’t built with your subscriber. Your free gift is the first point of contact with your prospect so it’s unlikely they will read an entire ebook but if you give them a short report which they are able to consume in about 20 mins and they get tremendous value from they are more likely to listen to you in the future and buy your recommendations. A big mistake i see a lot of affiliates make is the content they use for their free giveaway. They think just because it’s given away for free that they can just throw together some PLR material and use that. Unfortunately that doesn’t cut it these days and will damage your relationship with your prospect rather than strengthen it. The best way is to carry out some research in your marketplace and see what pains and frustrations your prospects have and create your free giveaway around that.

I love the attitude! And imagery. I can see it all as I visited New Delhi, a girl, hydra bod, and Bangalore back into thousand and three and then in Mumbai into thousand eight and two weeks before the terrorist attacks at my hotel ov visited New Delhi, agra, Hyderabad l, and Bangalore back into thousand and three and then in Mumbai into thousand eight and two weeks before the terrorist attacks hit my hotel oberoi!
Fast forward until junior year of high school and I got a job doing an engineering internship at a prestigious national internship. I believe I made ~11-12 an hour @ 17. That summer I made about 7700, So now I’m entering HS with about 23-25k in cash. Now senior year starts and I get a raise to 13ish (woot woot). I work 32 hours a week because I’m really far ahead on my credits, and do night school and sports to allow me to work a ton. In that year I make around 13k. That puts me just under 40k going into the summer. By the end of the summer as I start undergrad in engineering I have 40-45k + 5-10k in assets between my car, and some other hard assets. 18 years old – NW ~ 45-55k.
Affiliate marketing is an effective money-making strategy for countless online entities – however, as straightforward as it is in theory, success is rarely as easy as it looks. The best way to build a dedicated audience for any blog is to carefully and clearly define its target audience right from the start, and then create content that caters to that audience. It is also considered as important strategy for creating and publishing a successful blog is to develop content that isn’t readily available elsewhere in the blogosphere or on the web. Eventually, thanks for sharing your experience with us.
You’re likely familiar with a resource page, as most blogs tend to have them these days. Essentially, it’s a roundup of your favorite resources (products, services, apps, subscriptions, courses, etc.) that you think your audience will love and receive value from; most often, these are affiliate links, especially for your best performing affiliates. See R+R’s resource page here as an example.
Determination and a positive attitude can bring so many rewards. A lot of people don’t need 100k to live comfortably or to be happy, especially if they don’t live in a big city, but I think it’s a great career goal for city dwellers. Getting good grades and going to a strong school are definitely a leg up to a big salary. If I’m interviewing someone and they didn’t write their GPA down on their resume I always ask what it was – if they had bad grades in school from goofing off and partying why should I believe they would be any different in the work place? I want to hire people that are responsible, driven, efficient, and performed well in college.
With your geographics and your desire to start a business, I’d choose a business degree. Pet E. is extremely specific and you’ll only be marketable to the oil and gas industry. I’m also not aware of much activity in Wisconsin. I would be cautious about your assumptions on getting out after 1-3 years unless you have some kind of funding from other sources. 100k is only 50k after taxes and a frugal living style.
The second thing you’ll want to consider is whether or not it is a receptive audience for both your message and the final sale. For example, doing a guest post on a site about Japanese culture might be a good idea for your Bonsai affiliate post even though the community might not be currently interested in Bonsai growing. Or you could go to a photography blog and do a link-bait post about beautiful Bonsai photographs. The site’s traffic might not buy from you but once the post gets indexed a lot of Bonsai-lovers will find it. Remember, these guest posts, videos, etc. should be sending relevant organic traffic that converts to sales over the coming months and years.
The only thing to skip is the fancy school because most of my colleagues went to midwestern state schools. To Sam’s point, many engineers see an MBA as a way to move up when they get stuck and wonder “what’s next”… depending on circumstance, I’ve found this to be a bit of an illusion without a total career change. Anyway, I’m self-aware enough to admit that the glad-handing and corporate buzzword stuff isn’t my strength, so I’m happy to chill in the very low 6 figures with reduced effort now that I’ve mastered the job. To get ahead, I leveraged simplistic living/frugality (65% savings rate) as opposed to further career growth.

Hosting – I suggest joining the WordPress Hosting and WordPress Speed Up Facebook Group and see what real (unbiased) people are saying about hosting. SiteGround was #1 in multiple Facebook polls and #1 in most Facebook conversations (this one too). People who migrate usually see significant load time improvements especially if they’re currently using Godaddy/EIG. I use their semi-dedicated GoGeek plan which comes with 4x more server resources than regular shared hosting (#1 factor in WordPress Optimization Guide) and have <1s load times with 100% scores in GTmetrix/Pingdom. SiteGround also does free migrations.
Many students in high school and college are bored due to the courses being to easy and don’t feel the need put effort into the perfect gpa rat race. Just because you can obsorb and regurgitate the material does not mean you will be a hard working, loyal and reliable employee. If your GPA is 4.0, you can still be a horrible employee. How many employees go to highly ranked schools and get high gpas in studies which have no real use in the real world. Does that mean mean that 4.0 student was wise in making that decision, I don’t believe so. It’s more on how do you want to live your life.
I say invent yourself into a six figure income. I spent (wasted) 20 years building a professional appraisal firm only to watch hundreds of banking clients disappear into thin air with the advent of 2009’s HVCC legislation. I fired everyone once the business once the industry was transformed into nonprofit work. I spent the next couple of years searching for the next best thing and came to one conclusion. Adobe Software is an incredible bargain for anyone wishing to start their own business. As an appraiser I spent thousands of dollars each year on software updates, MLS fees, E & O insurance, gas, office space, etc. With Adobe’s cloud system you can lease every software item in their arsenal for $50 per month, meaning you could create publications, videos, web designs, and so much more for $600 per year. That’s roughly 1/50th of my annual expenses in the appraisal business. In the appraisal business you craft and sell your work one piece at a time…much like a custom furniture maker. With Adobe you could easily create one video and sell it 100,000 times.

CONTEST: Enter My Resource Page Contest for a Chance to Win Prizes Valued at $1,311.32 – When you enter you also get exclusive resources to help you create YOUR killer resource page — including a video critiquing 5 resource pages, 12 sample resources pages to review, and other great exclusive content to help you make a killer (and profitable) resource page. Enter to win here.
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I, too, work in an industry with salaries that are tied to budgets and salary cohorts. But I have found that side hustles, both in and out of my field, help to increase my income. It is sad that we have to give up even more of our time to get there, but I guess the sacrifice makes the reward even more satisfying??? In any case- thank you for sharing your journey, your goals and your insights. It is comforting to me to realize that there are others in my circumstances.
Let’s say, you are a developer who has just completed a client’s website. You think that it is one of your greatest works and the client is truly impressed. This will be a great time for you to offer them a website maintenance service from a third-party. You partner with this company through their recurring affiliate program. As long as your happy client stays with them, you get a steady stream of passive income.
I’d like to present another alternative to engineering, for those who don’t find that appealing: become an airline pilot. The major airlines are facing a tremendous shortage of pilots in the coming decade and for most that is due to the huge looming wave of mandatory retirements. That means not only will there be incredible demand for new pilots, but those who get hired in the next few years will move up the seniority lists very fast and enjoy the commensurate benefits of seniority (higher pay, more days off, more vacation, etc) far sooner than those of us who entered the industry twenty years ago. And life at a major airline can be pretty good. Nearly every major airline captain these days is making north of $200k, and some of the more senior bring in closer to $300k. And that is without a requirement for an advanced degree; a four-year degree from any accredited institution gets you in the door.
i just couldn’t resist jumping in here. even though i’m a b.s. chemist i’m in a union at this big company as more of a technician. we just allowed our first tier system on the plant this year and it’s the beginning of the end. even though i’m in the higher tier i would have conceded something in my future in order for the people coming in to make what i make. nobody ever wants to address the sacred “higher tiered” people. geez, about 15 years ago i knew of home-ec teachers pulling down 80 or 90k while the physics and math teachers unlikely reach that level, much less with the lifetime gold-plated benefits. i say, share the pain. now i’m fired up and need a drink.
Google Autocomplete – go to google.com, start typing a phrase and look at the dropdown autocomplete results. You can use the underscore character “_” to have Google fill-in-the-blank. Just make sure the last character you type is an underscore. Try using plurals and change the word ordering to see different results. This is how I find 90% of my keywords.
When I was in college, I studied math and chemistry. I did well in Chemistry until I got to the laboratory. Then I started blowing things up on accident and realized I had no career in it. I continued with math. As math got harder, I decided to take “easy” economics and international affairs courses (to blow off steam). I had a knack for getting As in both. One day, I had a conversation with a classmate and my girlfriend at the time. To paraphrase, they said I was great at IR and could have a stellar career in it. So, it gave me an ego boost as well as an improved GPA:
Your audience is more likely to buy a product, service or course when they can see the value it will bring into their life. The best way to convey this is through a dedicated, detailed blog post where you prominently feature ONE of your affiliates, all the reasons you authentically love them and how that thing is going to make someone’s life better.

Well I really understand everything that is being stated and I do agree with the majority of the Arrticle. Although I am 25 years old and I didnt even go to middle school and let alone grad uate highschool and went to college for an art historian as it is a passion of mine. I became a single mother and had to discontinue studdies. Now I had a hard start in life and made poor decisions when I was young , taking my lessons and downfalls with pride and perserverence, my life exscperiences have transformed me into a hard working determined woman. I now have two children and can easily make 200,000.00 a year if I would like to and will when my children are older. Right now I make anywere from 50,000 to 100,000 working hard for 4 to 6 month and then make about 4000 to 5000 a month the other half of the year now I work at the most 45 hrs a week and not very often my fiance is just now starting to return to work as he doesn’t need to he would like to !!!!! When you set your mind to making a great life for yourself and your family you will do it yes education is important and I wish I had made other decisions , With that being said my past does not define my intellect my drive nor my capabilities to find financial freedom and be successful I just keep always wanting and giving more!!
With your geographics and your desire to start a business, I’d choose a business degree. Pet E. is extremely specific and you’ll only be marketable to the oil and gas industry. I’m also not aware of much activity in Wisconsin. I would be cautious about your assumptions on getting out after 1-3 years unless you have some kind of funding from other sources. 100k is only 50k after taxes and a frugal living style.
In the United States, the highest earning occupational group is referred to as white collar professionals. Individuals in this occupational classification tend to report the highest job satisfaction and highest incomes. Defining income based on title of a profession can be misleading, given that a professional title may indicate the type of education received, but does not always correlate with the actual day to day income-generating endeavors that are pursued.
Some—like coaching and tutoring—are fairly specific to our careers. Others, though, are things most people could pursue. As teachers, we also have the option of picking up extra work on occasion by joining various curriculum teams (Who am I kidding? This is very rarely ever a paid assignment.), subbing, or even proctoring tests on the weekend or over the summer. It all adds up.
There are inexpensive options to attend technical and community colleges to obtain a 2 year degree in a technical field that O&G recruits. The industry is getting more complex so if you’re able to get an associates degree in Instrumentation and Controls and graduate at/or near the top of your class where major oil companies recruit you have a good chance of landing a job where you can make 100k+ less than 2 years out of college.
Where a person lives has a tremendous impact on how far a $100,000 income will go. Living on that salary in Texas or Mississippi is dramatically different from living on it in New York or Boston. Roy Laux, president of Synergy Financial Services in McKeesport, Pennsylvania, says it’s an unavoidable factor that the cost of one’s mortgage or rent can make or break that six-figure income.
Another good platform to start with is Reward Style. Once you’re enrolled, you can get links for seriously hundreds of different sites–everything from Bed, Bath & Beyond to Anthropologie to PETCO to Pottery Barn Kids to Zulily. While it’s a fairly small commission (usually 5-15%), it all adds up and all you’re doing is helping to facilitate a sale for something you’re already talking about anyway!
I was really surprised not to see unions mentioned at all in this article! You talk about steps and lanes a little but what raises the wage is the collective bargaining process which doesn’t means unions get everything they want but they have a lot more power and knowledge about the employer’s financial position than an at-will worker bargaining on their own.
4. Go back too school, probably the worst choice of all but i cant see myself being a laborer for ever, i hate working outside in the cold and after doing construction for 6 years now my body already feels achy compared too when i was younger. Ive had many injuries from hard physical labor and it scares me that one day i might not be able to do my job, and support my future family. as well i am bored with being a electrician so many of my friends are in school drinking coffees learning about interesting things and being around girls while I’m out in the cold working my ass off. Now i know i am making school sound glamorous and I’m sure its a lot of hard work, but i actually have thoroughly enjoyed Electrical school and am sad this is my last year. after this its work everyday and that thought depresses me, but making the wrong decision and going back to school for another mediocre job and go into debt when i can make all this money now depending on the route I take. I don’t know what i should do.
I’m not a teacher. So what? Figure out what makes you worth as much money as possible. What skills or talents do you need? Then, invest in yourself. Be smart about how you pay for that investment. Inquire if your work covers tuition or will provide some kind of financing. See if there are cohorts or other ways to acquire discounted tuition if you are in need of more traditional schooling.
The "mean annual salary" is the average salary being paid for a job or position. Your annual salary is the amount that you will get paid in a year assuming you work the entire year at that salary. For example, if you are paid semi-monthly (such as US military pay, 1st and 15th of each month), and your annual salary is $24,000, your gross paycheck (before taxes) will be $2,000.
Beside reading this post which is great for information. i really loved your comment. I feel you. I am also 31yo currently making around 100k living in an Eastern European country and trying to make more by finding new oportunities. Somehow i connected with your comment, i feel atracted to it. If you would like to continue comunicating in private just let me know. Cheers
Hello, I am a Sophomore in college at Humboldt state majoring in Biology currently and I am only doing that because I wanted to be a vet but now I have changed my mind but people around be are saying to stick with biology. I have heard of the idea applying to the top companies but I am interested in what field i should be majoring in. I went and talk to the business major counselor and that didn’t sound like anything I would be good at and enjoy ( as with all the majors right now). So my question to you is what major would be good to do to apply for the top companies ? and will the career be just like the major?
Amazing and thorough breakdown of how it all works! Thank you so much for sharing! a group of 3 friends myself + 2 are about to start affiliate marketing together. Since many advertising rules have changed with affiliate marketing (facebook ads etc.) and many articles have not been updated since, weʻd love any advice or suggestions you have for 2018!
If there’s one thing that all freelancers know, it is that their income is always ‘unpredictable’. Sometimes, you have work that you can’t even handle and sometimes, you are in desperate need for work. Your earnings as a freelancer depends on your time. The more time you spend, the more you will earn. This is why having recurring revenue can prove to be a significant factor of financial growth.
Sam, in eastern Canada, anything over 40K-50K per person is starting to be considered “wealthy”. The oil province is a little more lenient in this regard since they have oil money to compensate. In fact, in Canada we practice wealth redistribution on a provincial scale, and the rich provinces must contribute in order to support the poorer ones. Quebec receives a bit more than $1000 per capita IIRC.
Hi! I'm Kate, the founder of Root + Revel, a food and wellness site delivering inspiration to help people live naturally, without sacrifice. After reversing my PCOS and Leaky Gut with food and holistic remedies (no prescriptions), I started R+R to share what I've learned on this incredible journey. Food Heals! I'm living proof. But that doesn't mean bland chicken and steamed broccoli. Taste is paramount here and we’re taking it back to basics and infusing beauty, flavor and celebration into everyday life, helping you strike the balance between good and good for you. Read More…
You found a topic that is of interest to a huge target audience (who doesn’t want to make 100k plus a year?) You spent some money so your website comes up while searching google (therefore generating more traffic to your page) and you’ve written this guide in a way that includes everyone (that way nobody feels like they aren’t able to achieve this same success) Throughout the article you’ve posted links to multiple products/companies which you earn revenue from each time someone clicks them. Along with that there are advertisements throughout that you’re gaining revenue on etc. So essentially, anyone reading this and clicking links is generating revenue for you. Touché
I see myself at my current firm long-term, at least until I reach financial independence. I’ve been trying to take your advice and start a website to generate passive income, but I struggle with it because the status quo is so good. It’s so easy to take the short view and earn an extra $3000 by hammering out another patent application rather than looking at the big picture and working toward passive income. I struggle with not seeing quick results. Any advice for conquering this mindset?
I am glad to know that Affiliate Marketing is not dead as was presumed in early 2012 when Google pushed out harsh update targeting affiliate sites. I agree the article or blog post needs to be detailed and videos result in more conversions. I personally got succeeded more by adding videos to affiliate content. Anyways Glen all the tips you mentioned have been deployed by me on my blog and they work pretty well.
The word dropzone makes you think of paratroopers and exciting free falls, right? “Locating the golden dropzone,” as Michael Cheney put it, has nothing to do with excitement as you’ll see. It’s all about leveraging the pain and needs of your potential buyers to get them to buy stuff from you. Now, if you’re an experienced internet marketer at any level, you probably already know that people buy stuff from you only when you show them how it solves their problems or takes away their pain, right? So, what’s the biggie?
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