Making Money

Make Money Buying And Selling

Remember Don Lapre? His infomercials plastered late night TV pitching his Making Money program in the 90’s. Yes, I bought Don’s crap back then. I don’t remember much of what the package included, but I do recall it being heavy on the simple concept of buying and selling.

I remember skimming through his material and not being extremely impressed with the content. I was always optimistic about a new idea or program, so it was still hard to break my spirit even after purchasing an item of questionable merit. I wondered if it really could be that easy. Could selling a product through classifieds really be that profitable?

I believe back then it could have been if you had the right product, pitch (ad), and plan. There were plenty of opportunities I found in the back classified pages of newspapers and magazines pre-internet. This is where people looked for opportunity. Jobs, items for sale, and businesses were all posted in classified ads.

The problem with his formula was there really wasn’t one. It loosely reminded me of the Cash for Stuffing Envelopes game where the ad you responded to is the business he is selling you. The big difference being that Don upped the stakes with TV advertising spots, though I don’t recall if he recommended that same technique or not.

Part of his package was the contact information for thousands of newspapers so you could place ads in different markets and grow your business throughout the country. The allure being that if you could make a few hundred dollars from a single ad each and every month, imagine what you could earn with hundreds of simultaneous ads running all over the country.

I always loved the idea of informational mail order products. The thought of being able to duplicate something over and over for new profit occupied many daydreams for me in my younger years. I would set up an assembly line in my head of what it would be like to create the product, check the mail for orders, preparing and shipping orders, and of course, being rich from it.

My biggest problem was coming up with a product idea. Mine all sucked, but I did eventually find one that wasn’t too bad. It was a single page manual lottery wheel. Cheap to duplicate, cheap to mail.

I crafted my ad to be both enticing and as short as possible (classified ads were charged by the word), and placed an ad in the National Enquirer. It was much more expensive to place an ad in a national publication over a local newspaper, but I had dollar signs in my eyes, so I wanted the most eyeballs as possible to see my ad.

I think I charged $5 for the wheel, but it cost over $100 to run the ad, and in the end I made about 4 sales. I thought about sitting down and dissecting the issue. Was it the product? The ad? Should I not change anything until I’ve tried it for a few months? But in true form, I forgot about this and moved on to the next thing.

It is most definitely my modus operandi to move on after a short time, but I think this one was easier to forget because I was never crazy about my product. I always wanted something new to pitch, but could never come up with a completely unique idea on my own.

As far as Don Lapre is concerned, I searched for him out of curiosity and was shocked to find he was dead. He had been indicted by a federal grand jury in June of 2011 on accusations of running a nationwide scheme to sell worthless Internet businesses. 1

Shortly thereafter he was picked up by law enforcement for failure to appear at his arraignment. A few months later, and two days before his trial was to begin, he committed suicide by cutting his own throat with a razor blade in his jail cell. I was not expecting that.

  1. Don Lapre, Wikipedia (last visited July 24, 2015).

Life Goals For My Blog

I can almost foretell there will be people asking this question. A blog about failure? What’s his end game? My ultimate goal is like every other website I’ve ever launched, and that’s to share my thoughts, make some online connections with people, and earn money from it. Do I have a plan? Nope, not this time. I have tried so many different things unsuccessfully that I am no longer playing by the duplicitous rules of making money blogging. I’m doing what I want with this one, whether it ends up being an online diary for an audience of one, or something much bigger.

I’ve read a lot of tips on a ton of money making blogs from people claiming to make obscene amounts of money every month. The problem is for most of these tips, I can also find the polar opposite viewpoint on the same subject from another expert claiming to make a lot of money blogging. Perhaps there’s just too many facets to blogging to sum up any hard and fast rules for success. I mean, there’s a bunch of different ways to make money in real estate, but not every technique will work for every situation, right?

It could be that in addition to the multiple types of make money blogging angles, the market is changing, so some techniques just don’t work the same anymore. For example, if I do a search right now for how long my blog posts should be, I can find supporting articles for both long and short. Same thing for advertising on your blog. I’m tired of the tug of war. I’m sick of other bloggers telling everyone they’re being dumb and then having their ass kissed in the comments section. I’m writing my posts about what I want to write about and until I don’t feel like writing anymore, and that’s it.

It could also be I’m the sole problem too. A blogger making a ton of money from his site puffs out his digital chest and tells you how to do things whether he knows for sure or not. Fake it until you make it is fine for some, but not me. I don’t want to blow smoke up your butt. I’m not going to make you rich. You’ll have to figure that our for yourself. I have to do that too. What I believe this site may do for you is provide you with some decent ideas that you can take for yourself. If I suffer from idea overload and missing moxie or motivation to continue on, there has to be opposites of me who can take an idea and stick with it through thick and thin to make it a success, but who also suck at idea generation or lack ingenuity.

So what is my goal for this site? In the past I’ve picked a specific niche to target for each site, but because I have a vast pool of interests and a short attention span, I have a hard time sticking with writing about one topic for very long. This site will include a little bit of everything. Go ahead, try and label it.

The category names should sum it up for you. I’m going to share some thoughts I have on the books and programs I’ve purchased over the years, all of the website ideas I’ve come up with, and the creative stuff like limericks and movie script ideas I’ve started or yet to begin writing. I’m also going to include what I’ve learned along the way with most of that being stuff that didn’t work.

The ideas you can have for free, but if you want one of my domains I’ve purchased for a specific project, they won’t come cheap. I’m like one of those hoarders you see on America Pickers who is too attached to his junk to part with any of it. I usually price them at a number that I don’t think will sell, but I’ve been surprised before and had to say goodbye to one. It was a rather lackluster domain at a great price (for me), so I can’t complain, but more on that one here.

If you’re looking for someone claiming to be an authority on blogging to make money, or you need someone to tell you what to do, my sincere advice is to read elsewhere. There certainly doesn’t seem to be a shortage of people willing to impart their knowledge on the subject. On the flip side, if you’re looking for an idea for your next project, or just want to laugh at some of the stupid crap I’ve tried, stick around. There’s no shortage of that around here either.