I think content marketing is absolutely huge for affiliate’s, especially going into 2016, I think it will increasingly become something that will have to be adopted to gain domain trust, authority and good SERP rankings. Google loves quality content and if you want your website to stand the test of time, white-hat SEO is a must and content marketing is king!
Now you don’t need college credits to make school affordable. I went to a private school myself which I paid for all of except part of my first semester which my parents split until I had better jobs. By the time I finished I actually paid less than what my parents paid to put me through a private HS which at the time averaged $3,900/yr. I did it with scholarships and grants. I applied for everything I could. In total my 4yr degree cost me around $3,400/yr. You could add in maybe another 200/yr for books as I always kept a tight lid on that expense. I also worked hard as heck. At one point I even decided to take out a student loan to invest it in CD’s since the rate was much higher. Why? I wasn’t even concerned with paying it back since I had built up the money, and it’s not often you get a highly discounted lunch.
I searched on Google to find a way to make money as an affiliate marketer. This website is well-constructed and you spoke very clearly. You laid the foundation down for most people to understand, if they have basic reading skills. I never knew how to create a landing page until I came on this site. A whole lot is what I’m learning from this website of yours. Great Job!
I’m always surprised by how many people feel “icky” about promoting affiliate products – I started my blogging “career” building niche blogs specifically to sell Amazon products, then branched out into other affiliate programs. I’m a big fan of affiliate marketing, provided that the blogger/marketer is also providing quality content with their links.
Look around the blogosphere; law school grads are taking perma-part time jobs, MBA’s are a dime a dozen, and on and on. As long as the population keeps climbing uncontrollably in the US, and as long as businesses can manipulate the government into helping them keep downward pressure on jobs through slimy programs like H1B’s, big salaries will be a thing of the past. It’s why you should think *really* hard about going to college. It’s not for everyone, and its no guarantee that you’ll do better than if you don’t. The old fable of going to college means you’ll make $1m more in your lifetime than if you don’t, has been disproved time and again.
Electrical engineers can crush it out of the park. Think startups and stock options. There’s not too many startups in oil industry, and I’m guessing only high level employees get stock. In electrical engineering, low level employees get stock. For me personally, despite earning a very high salary, it’s nowhere near what I made from stock… salary is almost negligible.
According to 2013 data from the U.S. Census Bureau, only 22 percent of households had an income of $100,000 or more. Adam Koos of Libertas Wealth Management Group near Columbus, Ohio, says members of most households would see a boost in their quality of life by hitting the six-figure benchmark, but they might be surprised to see it doesn’t necessarily make them high rollers.

On the other hand: the main reason of bankruptcy for small businesses is bad financial management. Simply said: to forget to make invoices, not checking the payments and not following bad payers. 1 out of 3 is going bankrupt for this reason alone. I had to learn it myself. I spend at least 10% of my time with financial stuff. I don’t love it but the bills get payed ;-)

It’s unfortunate that you left IT out – yes portion of it have been outsourced. However I have several friends who work as social media technologist (monetize YouTube videos, twitter relationships etc.) that make over 6 figures. Also I work as an IT Business Analyst for a large consulting firm and make over 6 figures… My boss last year made over 200k (with bonus) for a midsize software development firm in retail. There is so much money to be made out there – BUT a lot of the old jobs are gone. I mean have we stopped to think about how some of those “crazy kids” running around on the internet blogging everywhere are now making 6 figures? That is a legit job that was created during the recession. Yeah people let’s make our own economic stimulus package! You have to find what the market is paying for these days – the money is out there.
In addition to physicians, lawyers, physicists, and nuclear engineers were all among the nation's 20 highest paid occupations with incomes in excess of $78,410.[24] Some of the other occupations in the high five-figure range were economists with a median of $72,780,[25] mathematicians with $81,240,[26] financial managers with $81,880,[27] and software publishers with median annual earnings of $73,060.[28] The median annual earnings of wage-and-salary pharmacists in May 2006 were $94,520. The median annual earnings of wage-and-salary engineers in November 2011 were $90,000. The middle 50 percent earned between $83,180 and $108,140 a year (as in the Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2008–09 Edition by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics).

I am starting a new job soon (30/m/renter/$12,000 IRA) but importantly, no debt. $56000/year with a 5% 401k Match. I am having trouble determining whether I want to go all in on the 401k and forgo the ROTH IRA. Or go partial in on the 401k ($10,000/year) + max ROTH IRA. After all, the after income-tax dollars are going to be in the second lowest braced (15%).
Before my Dad passed when I was thirteen, he established in me a strong mindset of ” no matter what you do son, don’t half ass anything. I hate a half ass! ” Now I’m 26, and this mindset has blessed every part of my life. With nothing more than a high school education, self learning, and an “I can do better, learn more, and give my all” attitude, I now earn 120,000 as a maintenance mechanic at a chemical plant. I believe it’s smart to know that success isn’t just about how much you make, it’s about what you have vs. what you owe. I bought my first house at 19, and a 100+ acre farm at 25. You may not get that dream job right away, but if you don’t give it your all at everything, all the time, you can’t blame circumstances. The day, or days, you decide to be lazy, there is someone out there who is pushing, who is going the extra mile, and who might get that dream job you wanted because they put in the extra effort. If you are looking at college, I can say that everyone I know that got a degree in biomedical engineering landed high paying, travel the world jobs right out of college.
There is nothing worse than writing 5,000 words of pure magic for a guest post only to find it gets published with your main link removed. Sure, it’s the owners prerogative to do that but it doesn’t feel great. Of course, those links need to be useful and relevant otherwise you’re no different to a spammer, but make sure the webmaster is happy for you to add one or two before you start.
I’ll admit that even on my own blog, AlexisGrant.com, I’m sometimes lazy about taking an extra minute or two to pull an affiliate link when I see an opportunity to use one in a post. But if you want to benefit as your traffic grows, you have to be consistent about adding those affiliate links every time, even if you don’t expect the post to take off. This is something we’re religious about on The Write Life (thank you, editor @Heathervdh!), so when we get unexpected traffic to a post, we earn.
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 and 2015. After 20 years on the police force and fire department, the majority of our brave men and women make $100,000+. Not only that, their capitalized pensions are worth millions!
So, that answers part if your question…yes, my attitude toward work, humans, merit, fairness, money, work ethic and many other things changed in the years of my first early retirement…not really enough room in this format to dive into that, but maybe we can chat about it sometime. That said, the wife and I reclaimed millionaire mountain by 2013 and are looking to check out of the corporate grind again within the next 5 yrs or sooner depending on how the global economic drama plays out. Oh, and yup – I also sell most company stock grants soon after they vest.
Ha! I not only lost 75% of it, I lost it in 3 weeks while wandering around in the Nepalese Himalayas…found out it was gone when I stumbled into an internet cafe after getting out of the mountains. I’d just had some perspective-altering experiences, including a night of protection from the Nepalese army while I watched Maoists firebomb a mountain town I’d just passed through…and an earlier surreal moment when I had to step over the dead bodies of a mother and child in India so I could get cash from a Citibank cash machine. At the exact moment my account came up in that Nepalese cafe and I blinked twice to make sure that small number was right, I heard bells ringing from outside the screenless window to my left. I looked over at an old man slumped down in the seat of his wooden cart absently flicking a donkey’s ass (is that redundant?) to keep them rolling down the dirt street. The cart passed malnourished children standing under prayer flags, snot running from their nostrils to their mouths, ignored, as usual. I turned back to my screen and laughed – sold most of what was left, logged off and got something to eat. That was the year 2000.

Before I share the strategies that I’ve used to generate over $100,000 in affiliate commissions per month at this point, there are two extremely important rules I use when promoting products that are not my own. You don’t have to use these rules in order to become an affiliate or be successful at it, but it’s what has helped me grow my affiliate income tremendously over the last couple of years:


Affluence and economic standing within society are often expressed in terms of percentile ranking. Economic ranking is conducted either in terms of giving lower thresholds for a designated group (e.g. the top 5%, 10%, 15%, etc.) or in terms of the percentage of households/individuals with incomes above a certain threshold (e.g. above $75,000, $100,000, $150,000, etc.). The table below presents 2006 income data in terms of the lower thresholds for the given percentages (e.g. the top 25.6% of households had incomes exceeding $80,000, compared to $47,000 for the top quarter of individuals).[7][13]

I always add an HTML table of contents to posts to make sure they are long and structured. This has been a HUGE help for me (and my readers) and there are tons of benefits: better chance of getting “jump to links” in Google (see below), increased average time on page, decreased bounce rates, and it makes it easier for readers to navigate through your content.


I earned a Bachelor’s in Mechanical Engineering Degree and a Masters in Management. The University I attended didn’t offer petroleum engineering but I do have several friends that were ChemE’s, as we used to call them. I agree that my ChemE friends who went into the oil industry definitely started out with highers salaries. But from my perspective these guys are working significantly more than the standard 40 hours a week contrary to what the article proposed.


My wife and I have a very similar story. I graduated in 2011 with a Bachelors in Mechanical Engineering from a public university. I took an engineering job with a major oil and gas company making $80k starting. With steady pay raises and 5 years experience, I’m now making $125k. My wife started out in the oil and gas industry working for a consulting engineering company for $75k in 2012 and steadily rose to $88k. However, there are definitely drawbacks to the profession. I have lived in 4 different cities since I started working (you have to move where the work is). Also, I was laid off from my previous employer in April 2015 due to the downturn in oil prices. I was very fortunate to find a job with another oil major in September 2015, but it required relocating to a different state away from my fiancee (married just a few months ago!) and family at the time. My wife was laid off from her O&G job in Feb 2016 as well. I can honestly say that the sacrifices I and my wife have to make by working in oil and gas have been worth it though. We’ve aggressively saved our money, and we’ve made money on each of the relocations. We’re on track to reach financial independence much, much sooner than if we had chosen careers in another industry. I also thoroughly enjoy working in the O&G industry which is more than many people can see about their jobs/career path.
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.

Otherwise, explore all of the ways that you can take classes or gain skills online, some for very little or no cost to you other than your time. If you find yourself doing this at the start of your career, the financial cost might be a bit much to bear at first. But no matter how much I learn about investments, it seems pretty clear to me that the one that consistently pays off in any market condition is the one we make in ourselves.
Otherwise, explore all of the ways that you can take classes or gain skills online, some for very little or no cost to you other than your time. If you find yourself doing this at the start of your career, the financial cost might be a bit much to bear at first. But no matter how much I learn about investments, it seems pretty clear to me that the one that consistently pays off in any market condition is the one we make in ourselves.
I’ve been terrified of only ever making a maximum of $50,000 a year for the majority of my post graduate career. So I’ve wanted to really qualify myself as something more than the typical undergrad; I plan to graduate college with a bachelor’s in psychology (focused in cognition and neural sciences) and a bachelor’s in philosophy, along with a minor in cognitive science (basic combination of psychology, philosophy, linguistics, and computer science) and a human factors certificate (research experience). (With a GPA around 3.4 or 3.5) I will have worked full time in finance for a non-profit organization while in school full time, giving myself a total of 6 years total of full time work experience upon graduation. I’ll be 25 by then.
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.
On the other hand: the main reason of bankruptcy for small businesses is bad financial management. Simply said: to forget to make invoices, not checking the payments and not following bad payers. 1 out of 3 is going bankrupt for this reason alone. I had to learn it myself. I spend at least 10% of my time with financial stuff. I don’t love it but the bills get payed ;-)
Thanks John and Sam – I’ll shoot this one over to my 22 yr old daughter who is about to graduate with an applied math degree. She plans to work for technology companies, probably starting with data analysis and visualization, which will pay over $100k within a few yrs depending on how much she wants to work. There isn’t any reason she can’t earn over $100k by 25, esp with me to help her get in (I’m in the biz…for maybe a few more years). I’m quite curious to see what kind of lifestyle she chooses. She’s smart and a good communicator, but she definitely isn’t the one yelling, “how high?” when some life-hating micromanager screams “JUMP!” :-)
3) You must document daily in a Google spreadsheet every Facebook post you make, every friend-getting session you undertake (including number of friends added) and the date of each of both of these activities in the Google spreadsheet. You must also share the clicks and traffic data in this spreadsheet which you get from these activities to demonstrate you are getting at least 35 clicks per day over the 60 day period. It is imperative that you document this data in the spreadsheet immediately after you have added Facebook friends and made the posts (along with your traffic data) because Google will track when you made updates to the spreadsheet, and this will enable us to see that you met the requirement as specified above. This spreadsheet should also include your name, your purchase email address and must be shared with 7figurefranchiseguarantee@gmail.com within 3 days of your purchase today.

Although it’s an attractive way to make six figures, it’s extremely difficult. It’s obviously possible, and saying that, doesn’t compromise your article’s point. However, I think you should have stressed the blood, sweat, and tears that people put forth to go through those programs and not advertise it as a, “Hey, almost anyone can get into one of these top fifteen schools and make $240,000/yr. after two years of employment” in such a nonchalant manner (oh, and the 70-80 hour weeks).
The reason I’ve put the “choosing your affiliate product” section before the “blog post writing and strategy” section is because it’s often really beneficial to know what affiliate keywords you’re going after before you start the blog. This gives you a good opportunity to craft the content and the tone of the discussion towards the promotion of the product in the reader’s “journey”.
I grew up in SF. Big city. And for high school I went to the ghetto side of town where a lot of the teachers were burned out. A few of them left for private school after 1-2 years of teaching where the pay is a lot higher. I would have done the same. At an inner city school, it’s more work and stress for less money and less respect. The actual kids weren’t great to deal with either. High schoolers aren’t as cute as 5th and 6th graders when they’re mad. These kids carried pocket knifes now!
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.
The latest annual inflation rate is 1.3 percent. It was 1.5 percent in 2013, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. That’s well below average, but gas, food prices, college tuition and the cost of health care have taken the biggest bites out of six-figure incomes. The latter two, plus the cost of housing, have risen faster than the rate of inflation over the past decade.
You can start your own business or work two jobs. Making an online income seems particularly trendy nowadays. I started Financial Samurai back in 2009. Three years later, I was able to leave my investment banking job to work on this site full time. You never know what you might be able to do. At the very least, register your name online and build your brand.
Thank you for your comment, but I don’t think I felt the need to comment if your post was about “six figures can be achieved in a variety of industries if one is the top of their field”. Don’t we all know that? College prof, photographers, athletes, actors, dancers, musicians, designers, personal trainers etc. You wouldn’t list these as $100k+ industries, do you? I wrote my last comment to explain that symphony orchestra industry also does not fit into the “industries that often pay six figures within 3 years out of school”.
I have never struggled with grades. Foolishly, as a high school senior at the top of my class, I chose a small private liberal arts school to attend for undergraduate studies. Even worse, I majored in the humanities, and obtained a Bachelors in Social Work / minor in Spanish. Since a masters takes only one year if you have your BSW, I obtained my MSW directly after graduating.
Great post. Good to read from someone whose career does not involve making 6 figures (sometimes while they are in their 20s)- if one follows the PF blogs, it’s easy to forget that the majority of the population makes nowhere near that! But being in that vast throng does not mean that it’s impossible to improve one’s lot, eventually make a high income, and someday reach FI.
Anyway, I am trying to get into IT, because every other profession within banking requires me to take a test and get licensed and renew that license with more tests. I’m bad with tests, and I don’t need that in my life, and IT not only pays more, but I can just get certified with classes. Anyway, how do I go from fraud to IT? I.e. Business Analyst, higher up IT profession? I’m not a computer science major, btw. I was in health sciences. I’ll look into other money making options by following your posts, but how can I start making a decent living by converting to full-time from contract? I’ll learn software skills/IT on the side, but yeh…Any tips?
I used to think education was overrated, and personally swore off not going back to school after I finished my undergrad. Then the economy hit the skids form 2001-2005 and I went back to get an MBA part-time. I know think education is underrated, not only for the things you learn, but for the connections you make and the confidence a good education gives everyone.

Not that I recommend this as a permanent lifestyle, especially if you want to have kids some day, but you could always take one of those “Most Dangerous Jobs” as an oil platform worker, Alaska crabber, etc. which pay well, or even get into a decent skilled job in a manufacturing facility with a base of say, 50-60K after a few years, but work every shift of overtime you can get your hands on. Granted, I used to see many people miserable doing this, but they were bringing in 6 figures as a mechanic, pipefitter or in some cases, even HS level line workers. Finally, you can get a side job – like blogging!

Excellent & invaluable information! Choosing the affiliate product before makes total sense as you can more easily tailor your site to your product. I am in total agreement about the soft sell, I find that if I get an email or read a blog post that is too obviously all about making money & too infomercial like I rarely buy or revisit (or unsubscribe).
Before we dive in and take a hard, close look I’d like to take this opportunity to share with you my personal experiences before joining this program. I have been an internet entrepreneur for years. I have studied with some of the greatest marketers online from Jonathan Mizell to Jon Thornhill and I have tried a number of different business models.
At the time, I had a ton of people reaching out wanting to hire me (I ranked my self #1 in Google for WordPress SEO Consultant, WordPress SEO Expert, many other good keywords). Unfortunately I struggled with basic things you need to run a service-based business… keeping track of clients, time management, and making sure I was charging clients for my time (and getting them to create content which often seemed impossible).
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I love your post. I have been following you over the years. I want to shed some light to others who are in pursuit of the “Six Figure Salary”. Upon graduation, I set a goal to make six figures by 30. I started off making only $33k a year. However, I out worked everyone in my office and established a reputation as a hard work and smart worker. I stayed at the firm (insurance) for 4 years and somehow networked and found an opportunity in management consulting. I stayed there for 10 months and made approximately $95k. Next, i took the experience came back to the insurance industry and now make $125k at the age of 27…. 3 years earlier!. My best advice for everyone is to work hard, follow the opportunities, strive for constant improvement, and be open to change. PS. I went to a “B” school and was a “B” student. Unfortunately, I was an underdog through out my career because of my school, but I balanced it by tremendous work ethic and self taught myself in business. Work hard, keep reading, and continue to improve. You will make six figures!
I believe a far more effective way to monetize your website is by offering consulting or other services, and/or selling digital products. In fact, that’s how I monetized AlexisGrant.com, where I only see between 13,000-16,000 unique visitors each month. (See my ebooks here.) Once you have a significant amount of traffic — I’d say at least 10,000 unique visitors a month — you can also add direct-buy advertising to the pile.
Great post! I majored in Electrical Engineering, instead of going the tech route (mistake?) I went into infrastructure and engineering services. The work is pretty easy and I work no more than 40 hours a week. I’m in my early 30s moving up proves to be very hard even with PM experience and being a licensed PE, this industry is very flat… So I’m going to business school this fall to get an MBA part time. I sat in some classes and I actually love it. I never explored the possibility of studying business before but nonetheless I’ve had side interest in economics and leadership psychology for a long time and read a lot. Don’t know if I will see an ROI immediately but I am probably going to enjoy these courses.

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.
If you’re wondering why we care about ranking for seemingly random phrases like “gifts for writers,” it’s because those random phrases, also known as long-tail keywords, all add up. While we want to rank for more obvious keywords like “freelance writing,” those are super competitive, so it’s best to aim to rank for a combination of keywords, including longer phrases that are less popular but still have a search presence.
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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’m just learning about this and I have never done it before. I just a had a question or two. Can I work from my phone is a iPhone 6s. And I’m not asking you to go through the entire thiing in your answer but how do I get started and how will I get the training I need. I had to get out of the out of town work due to my dad getting sick so I wanted to be home more, and one more thing does it cost a lot to for getting the adds or material needed to start making money. If so how much or some of the cost just ballpark figures will I have to spend while I’m up and going. I’m serious about it and just though I could get some advice and answer a few of the questions. Thanks Brett
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