I also worked my ass off during high school, went to a public university with enough AP credit to graduate in three years with an English degree (gasp!) then received a Master’s in journalism (double gasp!) that costed next to nothing, because I moved back home with my parents and didn’t have to divulge their income on the FAFSA for a graduate degree. I went into tech marketing and was making six figures by the time I was 25.

I would have one partner create a separate page/contact form specifically for the advertiser – so only people who see that contact form are people who were referred to by the advertiser. The advertiser would use that page as their outbound link. I know you can track outbound clicks in Google Analytics events and Contact Form conversions (usually through most contact form plugins) but that is the best way I think. Never done it, but this is how I see most affiliate programs like that work.
I find it a bit "interesting" that Michael says it works like any other franchise. Basically, you are buying an expensive products from him so you have a right to sell his other products. In this scenario, Michael Cheney wins for 100% sure but you, the buyer, may either lose $1,977 or make even more (directly or indirectly) money to Michael if you succeed well.
If you are blogging to make money and haven't read this book, you are in for a treat! Co-authors Darren Rowse and Chris Garrett lay out all of the details that the aspiring blogger needs in order to begin earning money at blogging. The book also pulls no punches in telling the readers how much work they will have to put in and how remarkable their blogs really must be to draw advertising dollars. Professional blogging is indeed full-time work, make no mistake. Darren and Chris have created in this manual a detailed roadmap for new and experienced bloggers alike who might have unique idea for a blog and enough passion and material about the topic for the long haul. I've got a blog and now I have a million new ideas about how to make the blog more "can't live without it" for my current subscribers and how to reel in more new readers. The book is an easy and enjoyable read. I read the entire thing in one cross-country flight. The sections of their book that I found most useful were the chapters on income and earning strategies, how to write a blog, blogging for a niche, blog networks, blog promotion and marketing, and the secrets of successful blogging. If you're a blogger, this is a book you shouldn't be without. The authors make all of their income from blogging and this book brightly lights the way for the anyone who aspires to be a pro blogger.
Personally, I don’t hate the job at the giant tech company, but it’s also something I don’t want to be doing for very long. Along with my wife, we’re taking the approach of living simply and saving ~70% of our income so we can walk away from it all financially independent in 5-10 years if we choose. If any of my side projects take off, we might be able to move onto a more digital-nomad type of location independent life even sooner than that.
Love this article! Another thing I wanted to add to the part about not being a donkey was debt. For instance, I am a sophomore at a Community college(getting my pre-reqs there for half the price of a state university), and because of my scholarship package, I am literally not paying a cent and this semester I got to pocket $2,000 of excess scholarship money, which I plan on saving for upcoming semesters or paying off a small loan I took out a while ago. Long story short, at this rate I forecast graduating debt-free(I am planning on attending undergrad b-school at UF or FSU since I am from Florida and can save a ton.) That won’t be the story of someone who squeaked past high school with a 2.7, and must graduate with a $30K+ student loan debt. Even if they land a good paying job, that debt will bite you in the butt.
I agree a persons entry level career potential really does start in 9th grade as they try to rise to the top of their class. But as John mentioned in his article, after a few years your work performance and aptitude is the largest factor in determining future salary, not someone’s educational background. A degree gets you a job. Your experience and performance get you to be the high income earner though.
We’ve compiled the following list of jobs to illustrate some of the most popular careers that offer high income opportunities without a college degree. Keep in mind that just because someone can make $100,000 each year at these jobs does not mean it’s guaranteed. These careers offer the possibility of generating a high income, especially when the careers include a salary, bonuses, commissions, overtime pay, and most importantly, hard work.
Michael Cheney claims he makes an almost effortless $39,041.46 every month. It’s interesting to note how he makes that figure with its fractions consistently. How’s that possible? Amazing! He further claims that his Commission Black Ops includes the best sales tactics known to the human race that even stark newbies can use to amass a fortune for themselves.
So then I graduate… and my company offers to send me to any school in the country for my Master’s; pay my salary + the degree and then give me another raise when I graduate… So me being the person I am I applied to a bunch of top schools cause not like I was paying so another full ride (woot woot). So now I’m about to finish my Master’s this December at a top 10 program by the age of 23 and I expect my income and investments to net me probably 140k with a LOT of upward mobility. I live in a state much cheaper than cities like Houston/Dallas… so for sheer buying power I would say I am probably pulling 400k equivalent to someone in the Bay Area or NYC. So if you bust your ass you can crush it out there.
And don't forget, in order to truly make personal recommendations, you'll need to be a CUSTOMER as well. I see far too many affiliates making personal recommendations without even making the investment in the product or service they are promoting. Not only will you lose credibility when you do this, you'll be limiting your marketing potential by not knowing the product like you should.

You really CAN make a living as a blogger — if you're willing to commit the time and effort, and if you follow the advice in this book. Written by two leading authorities on creating and monetizing blogs, ProBlogger lays out the steps you need to follow to create a revenue-generating blog. Complete with exercises to help you put the advice into practice, this book offers a realistic, approachable look at what it really takes to turn blogging into a successful career.


My conversion rate went from 2.5% to 8% just by including Facebook polls where SiteGround was rated #1 (here’s last year’s poll) plus Twitter screenshots and Facebook conversations. Whether it’s Amazon reviews or social proof, you NEED to include outside opinions. You can also use WP Rich Snippets to allow people to leave a review about the product/service on your site and get those review stars in Google (you will want to use their front end submit add-on).

No matter how much someone makes, anyone who lives beyond his or her means is going to feel financially pinched. While conspicuous consumption and blatant overspending is a problem, even those who try to keep an eye on their budget spend a large portion of their income on what financial advisers call “lifestyle inflation.” Koos says these are things that may not be necessities but are considered such at a certain income level. Many middle-class citizens now see cable, smartphones, tablets, computers, multiple televisions, Blu-ray players and gym memberships as “essential.”

With the oil crash, I’m not sure petroleum and chemical engineering is the best choice anymore. Though I would DEFINITELy say “STEM” degrees give you way more bang for your buck than arts degrees. I’m a computer engineer turned published children’s author, so I’ve been in both fields. Engineer is gruelling and doesn’t have the emotional payoff that writing does, but man is it lucrative. For those who don’t like engineering, they could work there for 10 years, make enough to retire early, and then do whatever their little heart desires. It worked for me and it was worth it. Can’t easily do that with most arts degrees. If I had to choose again, I’d definitely choose engineering…or accounting.
Great post, I also liked your one on starting a fashion blog. Do you have a post on affiliate linking through social media? I’m pretty confused on whats acceptable, especially for Pinterest. It seems Shopstyle {Shopsense} and rewardStyle seem to work on Pinterest. I started my website on Weebly.. so I am making the oh-not-so-fun transition over to WordPress currently.
Of course it’s up to you whether you keep the classical musician in the list of high paying industry. I just took the time to explain because I wanted to let an influential person like you know the reality of those $100k symphony musicians on strike. I can say this with confidence, though. If someone is looking to make six figures, classical music industry is the last place to consider getting in unless you have already started practicing at age 5! :)
As of 2002, there were approximately 146,000 (0.1%) households with incomes exceeding $1,500,000, while the top 0.01% or 11,000 households had incomes exceeding $5,500,000. The 400 highest tax payers in the nation had gross annual household incomes exceeding $87,000,000. Household incomes for this group have risen more dramatically than for any other. As a result, the gap between those who make less than one and half million dollars annually (99.9% of households) and those who make more (0.1%) has been steadily increasing, prompting The New York Times to proclaim that the "Richest Are Leaving Even the Rich Far Behind."[43]

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.
While I was doing WordPress speed optimization I noticed lots of people needed it, but very few people supplied it (there were a lack of services and tutorials when I researched Google). I also knew hosting was the #1 factor of website speed factor and these companies paid up to $200/sale. Hosting is a competitive space but the commissions and lack of supply enticed me.
The principle job of a reservoir engineer is to predict how much oil is in the ground and how quickly these volumes can be recovered. This involves working with geologists and other engineers to build computer models to forecast production. The unique thing about this industry is the uncertainty of it all. I’ve been on a team where all the engineers, assurers, managers propose a project…get the company to spend a billion dollars…and end in complete disaster. So a considerable amount of hand-waving is involved.
Disclosure of Material Connection: Some of the links on this page above are “affiliate links.” This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, I will receive an affiliate commission. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will add value to my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”
Oh, I absolutely could have chosen to pursue a more lucrative field. I just very firmly believe that I wanted to pursue my passions now, not later. There may be plenty of teachers, but there are other ways that teachers can distinguish themselves within the field. Unfortunately, it doesn’t net the pay increase that we might like. But that’s the trade off, I suppose, for pursuing this field. And you’re spot on with still being able to accumulate wealth. I’m working on it! 🙂
Every Tuesday, we send out an email called Favorite Finds where we recommend ONE, SINGLE affiliate product or service that we’re currently loving. It could be a new offer that one of our affiliates is promoting, or a tried and tested affiliate that we love and recommend on a regular basis, or a new affiliate so we can gauge our audience’s interest.
Location is a big factor. As you know, six figures in SF is not six figures in the Midwest. Income is very relative depending on the local cost of living. I have many family members and friends who are teachers (all in the Midwest) and none are close to six figures nor aspire to have such income unless they have outside hustles. When I was entering college 30 years ago, I considered teaching until I saw the salaries and how they plateaued. I was too money motivated and pursued a different path. Now I am in my late 40s and winding down my work schedule and considering becoming a part-time business teacher at a local college and/or private HS since money is no longer my motivation. I would like to see more entrepreneurial education opportunities for teens.
The most important lesson I got from the book is the importance of choosing a niche; it helps build a loyal community, get expertise and great, contextualized advertising. However, except for the generic "start by identifying your own interests, passions, and energy levels for topics", there's not a lot of direction about how to choose a profitable niche. There also isn't much about search engine optimization (which I fortunately covered in another book) or about keyword research. However, a lot of the things that Rowse and Garrett hold important (niching, ads, etc) aren't necessarily the be-all and end-all of popular blogging.
But if you want to make money – there are things to do besides be an engineer and having been one of those that did a bachelors, medical degree and post doc before I ever had a real job – worked fine even with the loans. I was the first in my family to acheive a graduate degree, paid for it with loans, but my niche career choice I found out about during my pathology traing way down the line worked out.
Hi i posted on here before but I have a quick question! My parents both work at Jp Morgan as I did before and make well well over 100k each but they didn’t go to the best colleges and one didn’t even go to college. So I believe it’s more ambition in yourself then what college or prestigious college you attend. Would you agree with my statement because I choose a cheaper instate school because I have belief in myself to do good not the school. Does this make sense or am I just setting myself up for failure?
To be assured of stable revenue inflows, you must definitely have reliable access to the internet. It also entails regular and prolonged contacts with the internet every quite often. This means you have to be online 24 hours a day if possible. In case your internet connectivity is unreliable, you may not be able to leverage its advantages to the fullest extent.
It will probably take a couple years to build a sustainable, passive income. That is the 1st car I have EVER purchased myself at age 29 (I was broke until then and leased from my parents). But the time committed to affiliate marketing and creating great tutorials and YouTube videos was worth it… I work for myself, there is virtually no limit on how much I can make, my schedule is flexible, and I collect enough passive income to live how I want.
I always think about this process in terms of the sales funnel. You are writing posts and making videos that introduce people to a broader idea or subject and then using backlinks to filter them towards your affiliate program through your ultimate post. When creating this content you want to make sure you select either evergreen topics or link-bait style subjects that build social momentum and attract relevant traffic over time.
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
Oddly enough, here I am building up this one site with recommended products and WAS going to find a picture of Michael Cheney and somehow I ran right into this article at the top of Google. Even though it gave me chills to read it, “oh, maaaan, there probably went $2k out the window” because what you said rang so true, I had to take the journalist’s point of view and pull it back around to some other things I realized instantly.
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