As for my young self’s income, I’ve told a few pieces of my story in comments for other FS posts, but here is some history that aligns with the content of this post and answers a couple of Sam’s questions: I can’t remember if I made over $100k by 25 or by 26, but was a millionaire by 27 due to a mostly lucky break with tech company stock options in the Roaring 90s. The path: I graduated high school as co-valedictorian, but will call myself #2 because the other guy took harder classes so deserves the #1 spot. I started college in mechanical engineering, hated it (and esp. one evil professor), switched to international studies, liked it. I got decent grades, partied a lot to make up for a choir boy high school experience, and worked all the way through college…full time my senior year…but just sweat jobs, no internships. Paid for college myself. After college, I traveled and partied a bit more, dabbled in a few different jobs and ended up convincing a small software company to pay for a basic software testing programming course in exchange for about 6 months of service (got that through casual networking inspired by a dose of nepotism). I wrote a test script they were able to sell, so negotiated an early break and landed a test engineer contracting job at a large software company via the worst interview in the history of interviews (the recruiter had to come get me in the parking lot as I was getting in my car to leave…the hiring manager’s closing question was an incredulous “…ummm…so, why should I hire you?” which I answered by jumping to my feet with both arms in the air to yell, “Cuz I’m the best!” He laughed and told me to get lost.). After a year at that job, I did a couple other tech contracting gigs, then converted to a full time gig with a pay cut for a junior mgmt job in exchange for lots of stock…which split 4 times in 12 months, thus the millionaire thing at 27. I lost 75% of that money via bad (a.k.a. zero) investment mgmt by 29, but had a fantastic time bouncing around the world adventuring and doing a little non-technology work (including teaching English in a Mexican university and training teachers in Los Angeles, both of which I liked). I eventually got married and went back to madam technology, but as I hinted above, this old whore (hey, “44” rhymes with “whore”..whaddyaknow..I’ll remember that for my birthday next week ;-)) has about run out of energy or interest for working the corporate red light district. I’ve created some other income streams, but want more of that before I leave tech and spend more time the way I now want to. This site is good inspiration for that.

Thanks for sharing. Parents will definitely find your info helpful! We agree with you on public universities. My wife and I went to city universities and both of us majored in Computer Science in the early 80’s. My wife is the smarter one and she went to college for free. My parents paid 6K for my 4.5 years. It around $450 per semester back then. I think we got a great education. I can’t imagine parents paying over 50K plus per year these days.
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 »
Also, to assume you can land a job with one of the fore-mentioned companies in your article, you must be a top performer. Not just in grades, but in networking, social groups, and even down to kissing ass to your professors. For example, It’s even been said that HBS (Harvard Business School) is one big networking program, if not almost a party (any HBS or Ivy League readers – I’m not saying that being intelligent, knocking out your case studies, and making those great grades aren’t important – I’m just emphasizing the importance of networking). Plus, you must assume you have a hand up against the students who are there solely based on nepotism. Also, most universities won’t let you go with less than 3 years of experience. After three years of experience, you may face some really – I would hope – great opportunities with the company you began your career with, even if they aren’t six figures right away.
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!
Hi Jennifer, you could target people in the “get a better job” space. This is the prime market for your offer. There are plenty of high-authority blogs out there in this niche and if you can partner with some influencers, you can see some amazing results. That said, it’s not as easy a 123. Your affiliate offer needs to be amazing. Your website should be beautiful, and your need to have a strategy for reaching out to these people in your industry. You can’t just send them an email and expect them to sign up to your affiliate program.
Regarding “convincing someone to buy your product is not that easy”, I do agree with you, but at the same time, I remember all those products I’ve bought online. I did not search on Google for those products neither I went to the company websites to get information and buy. They were affiliate people and their blogs that inspired to buy them. PrettyLink Pro, SEO Pressor was recommended by Kimberley, I bought Profits Theme, WP Zon builder because Alex Whaley recommended. Similarly I bought CommentLuv Premium because Ileane, Kavita, Steve and many others were talking good about it.

This is probably going to be controversial but a few months ago I remember someone saying that Google is now putting more weight on blogs and websites that have a unique approach. This makes sense. They don’t want all the results on the homepage to be review sites! Since hearing about this and implementing it on a few of my blogs I’ve noticed quite nice results. If you can go one step further and create a unique tool or app to add to the page you’re laughing.

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.
I see a lot of naysayers and people not even trying. I am by no means rich or in the 1% but I live comfortably. I am single mother with ZERO support from my child’s father or from my parents who have passed away. I own a cleaning business. I got an associate’s in HIM and I work remotely and received my credentials. Yes, I spent a couple thousand starting my business and finishing my education, but I have been reimbursed all of my startup cost and have a team of employees. I don’t work 40 hours a week. Maybe 35. I don’t do any of the cleanings for my company, I have employees for that. Not saying in an emergency I haven’t cleaned, but for the most part the business runs itself because I strategically put people in place to do so. It was not an easy road, but it was well traveled and worth it.
Just a quick note on the consulting firms you listed. Although the Big 3 are obvious to include in the list, I would certainly remove Booz Allen Hamilton, and even Arthur D. Little. Booz Allen is notorious for under-paying, especially when compared to much better firms. Booz Allen is also primarily a Federal contractor with very limited commercial work (granted their non-compete with Booz & Co. [now Strategy&] is over) – commercial strategy/ management consulting out-pays Federal counterparts.
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.
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.

Hey Tiffany, how are you today? This is an excellent guide and I love all the information! It’s true many people who have blogs have no idea about affiliate marketing and it’s potential, but there is so much money to be made from affiliate marketing it’s unreal. One tip I could give is people who are building up blogs should get into affiliate marketing earlier! Great post, have a great day… thanks for the great information!


Author Bio: Sam started Financial Samurai in 2009 to help people achieve financial freedom sooner, rather than later. He spent 13 years working in investment banking, earned his MBA from UC Berkeley, and retired at age 34 in San Francisco. Everything Sam writes is based on first-hand experience because money is too important to be left up to pontification.
Your autoresponder is the series of emails that go out to people who subscribe to your website in exchange for something they want. For example, if you sign up to my Author Blueprint at www.TheCreativePenn.com/blueprint you’ll get useful emails, articles and videos, some of which contain affiliate links, all for products that I have personally found useful.

Hey Brian! I don’t have an affiliate link in my review of it, but I think STM would be the better fit if product creation is your focus. As far as promoting the product once you created it – I think WA would be a good fit. But they’re pretty affiliate-centric, therefore there’s not much material regarding product creation (whereas there’s bound to be some with how experienced many of the contributors at STM are).
Don’t set a goal to write 3 blog posts a day… set a goal to write 1 blog post a week and make that post super helpful, long, and filled with information that is so valuable you will say “yeah, people will link to that.” 90% of my traffic/affiliate income comes from just 20 tutorials, many of which are 5+ years old. But I am constantly updating them to make the content better.

However this would only cover a small percentage of my E-mail marketing campaign, I would also market my most “popular” posts within the newsletter and have links within those reviews that point to the product review page. It would be a good way to interact with my visitors as well and like you say, answer any questions they may have (My affiliate covers this pretty well though). I will also add that my affiliate has a lifetime cookie and regularly sends out E-mails to repeat customers however I may lose the “last referrer” sale if they visit a competitor when making the purchase.
Hi John – thanks for the angle on applying applied math to the petroleum industry. I’ve been surprised at how disinterested my daughter’s math dept. seems to be in giving her tips like that to explore. Maybe I’m not all that surprised…in the west side of WA state a general apathy seems to have gradually settled in over the last few years like low fog on a cool morning. People just don’t seemed to stop caring about service…like they’re still doing their jobs but checked out at some point. They look at you with “gone fishing” signs in both eyes and leave their pride on the floor like a dropped fork. I’m not sure if others have noticed a similar change where they live – it aint a good sign socially or economically.

As a 7 figure franchise you’re also going to be able to promote each of his products wihle keeping 100% of the sale paid direct to your paypal account. Even if you don’t promote all of them, you can promote just one product and as mentioned in the other section, Michael will automatically funnel all leads through a whole campaign promoting each of his products.


Hello Anis, your review is quiet honest, I have several products by michael as I have tried to promote it before, now those looking at promoting his stuff, know that it will make money, but those who buy, unless they are total newbies will not be very happy. Having said that just go on Jvzoo and apply to promote his stuff if you wanna try if his funnels work, thats free, coz of the hype they really do work.
The one section I found really useful was the monetizing section where the authors explain all about choosing the right ads, affiliate programs and other revenue streams. While I'm sure there's more complete info on this (it could be worth an entire book), it was a good introduction and gave me guidelines if I ever have to do something like this myself.
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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.
This is BS because Mech E and Chem E curriculums don’t cover fluid flow in porous media which is what petroleum engineering is all about. Further, Pet Es have essentially dedicated their career to oil and gas with limited options to go into other industries. To avoid hiring them due to saving $10-15,000 in starting salaries is a slap in the face. The least petroleum companies can do is hire petroleum engineers and simply offer less money!

It seems that people are slightly repelled from sales pages since the experience imposes a decision making at a speed not of their choosing i.e. they are aware of the funnel and quite frankly suspicious of being manipulated (this is where trust building kicks in, but sometimes just…). For that reason, using editing techniques and somewhat less obvious copywriting techniques can make a huge difference. Give the full disclosure that you are selling, sure, but make it so that the reader is in a different mindset. I for one like to make the sale page looking like any other article on the site. Magazine style articles, with pictures, opinions, personal experience, advice… When my style of expression and writing feels as dispersed through the article as it is through any other segment of my site, I know that the page would appeal more to visitors.
Thank you Andrew! Also what is your take your data analytical roles in corporate? Do you think data analytical roles will be short-lived due to all the hype and the analysis part will be automated soon within the next 10 years or so? Even if it was automated, EXPLAINING the data and EXPLAINING it to your investors, stockholders, clients to basically tell them how they’ll make money from what they wanted me to analyze and interpret will still be the HUMAN aspect, correct. U you can’t automate that, right? Idk if this kind of role will be short-lived compared to a functional IT role. Moreover, I eventually want to hold a managerial role in corporate, but I want to deal with a line of business where there is a lot of money within IT. Projects that deal with SAP? CRM? <— This isn't programming right? I don't mind working for healthcare companies since that's where alot of money is for stuff like ^.
I expanded my SEO blog and started writing about hosting, cache plugins, and other relevant topics… while recommending SiteGround in each tutorial. I added social proof like this poll where they were rated the #1 host. Each tutorial was super detailed and tons of people found them helpful – many generated 100 visitors/day since the great content got them ranked high.
When one of our readers at The Write Life buys Chris Guillebeau’s $58 Unconventional Guide to Freelance Writing through our link, for example, we earn $29. When James Chartrand’s Damn Fine Words course sells for $1,599 through our site, we earn $200. Lots of creators offer affiliate programs for their products; the key is finding products that appeal to your audience, so you readers want to purchase them.
Hey Cristina. The only way to achieve those figures is to build your own business and become your own boss. It takes hard work and dedication, and it ALWAYS takes money to make money on some level. If you want to make a million dollars, you best believe there are start up costs. The key is to find the right opportunity, with a low start up cost, and an IMMENSE support system in place. You need to find Mentors who have already achieved what you want to achieve and emulate their daily actions and habits.

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.
There are countless numbers of affiliate models that people follow in an effort to earn money online.  I follow the technique of sharing what I use,  and earning income by doing so.  If you are using monetization techniques other than AdSense, I recommend that you make a slow transition to affiliate marketing as well. Add one or two banners of related affiliate products on your blog sidebar, and see how it works out for you.
As you progress your mid-career 6-figure/+ salary, and full 401K contributions over the years, along other bonuses/stocks/investments you may have made/saved., you are on your path to that million and/or FI.. As you reach into late 30s, early 40s, see the financial picture: your 401K+investments growing about 7% average — on a typical 800K investments — that amount to $56K/year, your salary (don’t forget savings!), plus say 25K/year growth on your home-equity (in good town/school-district)., you will be closing “double” the six-figure income. Keep the progress going, cruise-control, and enjoy the ride along the way — you be on your way to FI soon. Do learn Golf, you know how to hob-nob with big boys (or girls)
Hi Sam, I’m new to your site and getting so much out of it. You mentioned you got your MBA for cheap or free–have you already written a post on it? I may not have gotten to your post yet, but I’m preparing for the GMAT and application process next month and need help figuring out how to get my MBA for cheap or free too. Can I ask how you did it? Any pointers please? Thanks!
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.

Hi, I’m Austin and just got enrolled in Marquettes business school about in the top 60 or 70 in the nation. I got mostly A’s in school and both my parents are senior project managers at jp Morgan. I am a driven student and want to be as successful as them. Does this school and their presence help me complete my goal of making 100k a year out of school?
Is becoming a $100k+ earner in orchestras like SF symphony just as competitive as joining a major sports league? Maybe. It’s just that $100k+ symphony job openings are so rare that no one can really count on it. Orchestra is a very unique job and often general public don’t know how people got there. Of course not everyone value and want to support arts. But when those few $100k orchestra job salary disappear, the live symphony music we hear today will die.
If you decide to become a patent agent (no law degree) or a patent attorney (law degree), you can crush it (multiple six figure income by age 30). Some of the jobs are a big grind, like IP litigation, which I do not do. I found an awesome mid-sized law firm where I write patent applications for inventors at big tech companies. At the right firm, you can make multiple six figures working a reasonable 45-50 hours per week.
While White households are always near the national median due to Whites being by far the most prevalent racial demographic, the percentages of minority households with incomes exceeding $100,000 strayed considerably from their percentage of the overall population: Asian Americans, who represent the smallest surveyed racial demographic in the overall population, were the found to be the prevalent minority among six figure income households.
Similar situation to Every Cent counts. I graduated with BA in political science from a relatively unknown school. I’m 26, but will break 6 figures in 1-2 years max (95k currently). Currently I have offers for 110-130k not including bonuses (I like my job so refusing for now, because work-life was suffering). I read up on in-demand tech skills like advanced analytics and software engineering. That’s how I did it. You don’t need to work at google, just be solid at programming and know in-demand skills.
While no one is asking us to starve (we’re not artists, for Pete’s sake), popular culture seems to support the notion that teachers can and should live on meager earnings. Take Matilda. You know, the Roald Dahl book you haven’t read since third grade. The teacher in the book who Matilda absolutely loves spends her days eating bread and butter because of her pittance of a salary. It’s a heartwarming tale of dedication.
I DID invest in the 7-Figure Franchise because I gleaned so much from Cheney’s products. In fact, his training helped me steer clear of OTHER junk peddled on the web. So, it made sense that when I was asked what helped me, I recommended some of his products. When 7-Figure Franchise came along, of course, I realized, “why NOT make 100% on the stuff I’m already suggesting to others? Just drive more traffic.” Well, that last part is easier said than done: getting traffic.
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