The monumental difference between earning $1 online vs nothing

There are 10 billion courses out there on how to make money online. I know because I’ve counted all of them. 🙂

If you spend much time at all in the world of internet marketing, you will start to get the feeling that almost everyone but you is making $20,000 a month or more.

If you’re not a millionaire online, you’re doing it wrong. Actually, something must be wrong with you, here are 8 people who are dumber than you and had less resources and are making 6 figures a month.

A monkey could follow our course and pull off 10k a month!

Here, look at this guy, he’s just running a few ads and pulling in 7 figures. And he smokes weed and surfs all day. What’s your problem?

Then try going to some of the networking events, seminars, or conferences. Everyone is doing something BIG.

It seems like light years away if you are just starting out.

It can feel overwhelming, frustrating, and annoying to hear 90 million “success stories” about online marketers when you haven’t even made $1 yet.

And many of the courses I have gone through emphasize this idea of making shit tons of money. As a newbie/beginner, or just someone who wants to start making SOME passive income, this is the reverse of what is intended to be motivational.

So most people stay stuck, frozen, not able to even do the first thing to get them to the goal of online income. Part of this is the fear of success, or fear of change. Doing things differently means going against what they are used to.

And people hate change.

And the industry…while it’s good at capturing emotional, knee-jerk buyers (which is actually most humans), keeps people from moving from no income to earning $1 online.

When you read all the hypey sales pages, you are made to believe that you can achieve what all these other people have done- make tons of money without having any previous knowledge or skills, and by working “4 hours a week”.

Prospective online business people get excited, they invest in a course, or multiple courses, and what happens is one of 3 things:

1. They never even open up the product, watch the first video, or read the first page. They got their emotional need for feeling good about themselves fulfilled by pushing the Buy button. A small part of them thinks that by clicking Buy, they will magically be making $20k a month in a short time, without doing anything. But they also know at some level that they won’t do anything. (~97% of people)

2. They start down the path, get to the first module or two, and get overwhelmed and quit. It’s like they would prefer to make NO MONEY AT ALL, instead of falling short of the millions that the course seems to be setting them up to make. (Why try? I’ll never get to $10 million anyway, I feel better giving up now!) (~2.5% of people)

3. They take the course seriously, implement everything, and start to see some money start coming in. Most of these people don’t end up making millions- or even close- but some end up with a few dollars, maybe a few hundred dollars coming in every month. They are WAY ahead of where they were when they started. But they still don’t feel like “enough”, because “everyone else” is traveling the world, or buying mansions, or kicking it on some tropical beach (Insert proverbial image of sitting on a beach chair with laptop on lap), while bank accounts keep filling up. (~.5% of people)

Livin' the dream
Livin’ the dream

The problem with many online marketing courses today is they over-deliver. That sounds like a good thing if you are a customer. But when you are in the course, it would appear that EVERYTHING is a priority. For example. You MUST blog. You MUST test everything. You MUST have absolute rock star sales copy. You have to be doing Twitter, making videos, running an affiliate program, doing SEO, Adwords, Facebook ads, webinars and a ton of other CRUCIAL things, or you are just not going to make your site work!


After reading Perry Marshall’s 80/20 Sales and Marketing, I can see the holes in these courses much more clearly. For example, why would you want to spend 6 months blogging to get some traffic when you can learn a few PPC skills and get traffic the next day or two? Or, another popular thing for people who teach internet marketing to claim is, you must test the crap out of everything! It’s ALL about testing!!

Or is it? What if you can start making sales the first day, then run a test against that, and incrementally improve your profits- rather than start out testing 47 things which could take you 2 weeks to even set up?

It comes down to something called Money Momentum.

If you don’t have it, it can be hard to get.

If you have it, you can make reasonable increases to your income. Maybe you made $50 you first month with your site. While $50 in a month may be HORRIBLE to someone making $10k a month, to compare yourself to the person doing 10k will be the death of your business.

What if you made $100 the next month? Is a 100% increase in profits terrible?

This incrementalism, 80/20, and Money Momentum is what is missing today in all the ways to get started in online marketing.

I’ve come up with some ideas of a simple, straightforward, minimalist, 80/20 course that I’m thinking of putting together. Here’s the quick version of what I’m thinking:

Five Steps To Getting an Online Business Up and Running and Earning Your First $1 Online

1. Niche- Keywords, Amazon, what you see
2. Product – Creation, Shipment + Online course/product
3. Website – WordPress with Designer from oDesk OR do yourself (Optimize Press)
4. Sales Copy – 3 Tips page, Squeeze page, Sales Letter page
5. Traffic – FB Ads- quick & dirty “How to” course

This course would not be in depth. But it will be step-by-minimalist step.

-I’m not going to teach how to build a website. That takes too long and it’s very annoying for non-technical people.
-I’m not going to teach mindset. There are a million places to get motivation. This is just getting people to $1. The Money Momentum will take care of a lot of the motivation from there.
-I’m not going to teach about the latest great plugins. There are only a handful that you need to get started
-I’m not going to get into SEO. It’s slow and boring and can come later, after you’ve got some Money Momentum.
-I’m not going to scare anyone into thinking writing sales copy means you need years of experience or hiring a writer for $10,000. Plenty of ways to get this done quickly.
-I’m going to give everything I know about Facebook ads. I’ve taken several courses and had success making money in a small niche. This is where you will spend the most time.

The idea here is to deliver everything someone needs to go from $0 to $1 in earnings on their website. If someone can get to $1, they have a much higher chance of the 10k, 20k, or 100k a month. But 0 to 10k is impossible without going from 0 to $1 first.

If this kid can do it, SO CAN YOU!
If this kid can do it, SO CAN YOU!

This is a scaled down minimalist course meant to get right to the heart, right to the meat and potatoes of what to do to earn $1 as fast as possible. This is meant to get beginners unstuck. The course will cost in the range of $100. No monthly fees, no paying for things they don’t need or won’t use.

What do you think?

What would you add or cut out?

What do you hate about courses you’ve taken to help you start building online income? What has worked?

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Kevin Koskella

Kevin is a podcaster and writer on living free, despite the crazy world we live in. Kevin travels full time and explores the world and how to achieve and maximize freedom in life.

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