The end of last month, (June), marked one complete year of being in the IM industry
I thought I'd dedicate a whole post about my journey into this and how I've developed as an affiliate marketer during the process. I started off thinking it was going to be a post but as I wrote it out, I started to realize it would be better as a 'series' of posts and so this will be the first of many parts going through my first year of full time affiliate marketing and the events that were turning points for me.
I can't believe it's gone by so quick! Looking back however, I've come a long way from my newbie days.
Inclinations to do Something More
21,fresh out of university and landed an awesome graduate position at one of the top construction firms in Australia. I couldn't believe I was here. The building was huge and classy. Something I had imagined it to be. People were walking around the office, some chatting some genuinely busy. I still remember sitting there on a table with nothing but a bunch of engineering textbooks my manager had asked me to read. Enthusiastic as ever to be the best I could and climb the ranks of the Civil Engineering industry I read EVERY book given to me inside and out.
About a year later, I was running my own projects. It took a while to gain the confidence and systems necessary to understand how to do this well but I had seen how my mentor managed projects and dealt with issues and it was starting to become, dare I say, easy. I was running off Microsoft Project to track project progress, an excel spreadsheet to track my finances and a simple little whiteboard to list the things I needed to get done.
Six months later, I was starting to get bored. Things were getting repetitive and tasks that I would finish within an hour, I was finishing in ten minutes. Office and Site politics were getting to me and I was beginning to realize how fake work relationships were. It annoyed me that I'd meet and get to know people on a personal level only to be at each others throats when things went wrong and our companies reputation was at steak. Having a Quality Control type role on site I'd often have to pull contractors back and get them to fix things because their not up to standard. When money is at steak everything changes, something I was beginning to learn and despise about the corporate life.
During the end of my second year I had had enough. I wanted to get out and my entrepreneurial mind that I had kept in check over the last two years was starting to make it's way back to the surface of my mind. Every now and then I'd start browsing around the net on my spare time looking through businesses for sale. I'd pull out my calculator and attempt to calculate ROI potential in this business or that business. I eventually thought I'd just jump in and learn from my mistakes and contacted a popular telecommunications company that sold mobile phones. I met with their franchise development manager and over the course of the next few months we started talking about setting up the franchise.
I got a team together, got my finances in check, had a business proposal noting all the possible risks that we could be exposed to and measures I was going to take if things went wrong. In short, I was prepared to start. I was still employed at the time but it was clear to me that I had almost lost complete interest in the Civil Engineering field. I had NO interest in employment anymore and felt I had to get out. October 2012 I put in my resignation and two weeks later left my job.
Frustrated with Previous Business Ventures
The franchise company I had hoped I was going to have up and running ended up getting bought over and re branded to another company effectively nullifying any agreements we had at the time. Basically, it fell through. Although this was completely unplanned and naturally I should have been panicking, I saw this as a blessing. I was left with a whole lot of time on my hands to explore the business world and a lot of money to invest in opportunities I saw fit.
I knew I would make a lot of mistakes at the start so I began reading books and watching videos of Noah Kagan, Tony Robins, Chad Mureta, Tim Ferris and other modern day entrepreneurs. At the same time I was trying all sorts of 'businesses' such as buying and selling things on eBay, buying and selling things from local garage sales, starting blogs, making phone applications, investing in stock, basically anything and everything that I thought would make me money.
I was making some money here and there but nothing major. The most I made was a thousand bucks buying and selling a car. It was a quick thrill but definitely wasn't sustainable. I was looking for something to replace my income in terms of financial stability, not something that would bring in some money here and there.
My online blogs and tech ventures always seemed to get nowhere after I'd make all the content and it was finally ready to get traffic to. I started to realize there was no point doing everything on the backend with no proper marketing plan in place. What in the world WAS a proper marketing plan anyway? I had NO clue. Noah Kagans advice, "ALWAYS test your market before you begin a business", started to make sense to me now. Instead of spending hours, days and sometimes even months building something with no proof that it even has potential buyers, it was better to put these ideas out there and see the scale of response I got back.
I was beginning to think like a real entrepreneur and my thoughts were becoming more and more inline with the entrepreneurs I had seen on YouTube and read about in books. Although I had made little to no money when compared to my employment days, all the progress happening was internal. I was growing and learning. Acquiring design skills, outsourcing skills, people management skills, learning what works and what doesn't. I was making better and better decisions and truly felt I was close to breaking into something. Eventually I realized there was a missing piece of the puzzle I had overlooked countless times. Something that made me push everything aside and focus 100% of my effort to master. What was it? Find out in the next episode of DRAGON BALLL ZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZ!
haha, jokes aside, that's the end of part 1. Look out for my next post in the coming weeks,
A Realization that Changed Everything
Building My Empire
This Business is REAL
Today and Current Activities
Thinking Long Term, Planning For the Future
What was the moment you realized you wanted to give IM a shot? Comment Below!