Last week, I wrote an article on Bike198 about how every single rider had to start somewhere (Never Forget We All Started Somewhere). No one just wakes up one day able to jump road gaps or magically gets the endurance and skill to win races. At some point in time, every rider started at square one with zero knowledge and probably not even a bike. All they had was the willingness to learn and the drive to make their own dream a reality, but when you see it on the outside…it appears they have always ridden like that…

In the blogging world, that same paradox exists. You see blogs that are well established and making money forgetting that they too started with an idea and a blank screen.

With my BlogWorld Expo presentation coming up, I have been thinking a lot lately about the sequence of events that got to this point. When I look back on it, it really amazes me. I was just a guy who started a blog…nothing more…nothing less. My idea started to grow with hard work and dedication to the dream to become what it is today, but…at the end of the day…I am still just a guy that started a blog.

Every Pro Blogger Started Somewhere

If you are just starting out or trying to get over a plateau in your progress, it can seem like the world had it easier than you. It can seem like there was some secret that you missed out on. The reality is that every blogger (or rider like I pointed out in the biking article) has been exactly where you are sitting right now.

What separates the successful from those that aren’t is the willingness to push through the harder times and not give up. By learning from our experiences and keeping the drive to move forward, we see success and the monetary benefits that come along with that. No one…I repeat…no one wakes up one day with a “6 figure blog”. Every blogger that generates income from their efforts works hard at it day in day out to make it a success.

Nothing is free in life and everything that is worth having requires work.

You are not the first and certainly will not be the last to start a successful blog or make your blog successful by pushing through the harder times. Every blogger goes through these phases. It is how you deal with the ups and downs that determines your own personal outcome.

Successful business building and blogging does not come overnight. Everyone has to start somewhere…and it is that journey that makes the fruits of your labor so rewarding in the end. Every success has a story…what will yours be?


This guest post was submitted by James Martell. Given the current state of “push button” income schemes…I thought it was highly relevant to post here.

Sadly the online “opportunity” training arena has become populated by hucksters and professional liars who’ll resort to ever trick in the book to market your a** off until they’ve drained you of not only your bank account (or credit cards) but your self esteem too.

I’ve been a full time “affiliate marketer” since a buddy showed me how back in 1999. And I’ve been teaching what I know since 2001. And I didn’t start teaching until my affiliate income was up to $10,000 a month.

I’ve witnessed hundred’s of success stories since then. So yes, there is most definitely “money” to be made, both with affiliate programs and with training.

Income Claims and Sleazy Tactics Have Muddied the Waters

Regrettably, consumers are a lot more wary these days; and with good reason. I, like you, am appalled at the ridiculous “overnight riches” (with little effort) claims I regularly receive in my inbox.

And I have come to loathe those confusing pop-ups that won’t let you get off their site unless you answer their sneaky trick question: press Cancel or Okay. Heck, the other day I found one that would not go away whether I hit Cancel, OK or hit the red X upper right.

Oh, they think they are so clever – so marketing savvy.

But I’ll say this: they are phony, slimy amateurs because “marketing”, whether online or off, are based on establishing trust. Would you ever do business with someone who came to your office or home and refused to leave when you said no thank you?

Not likely. Yet those tactics are commonplace online these days.

How I Made $200,604 in 36 Hours with This Simple Secret

Headlines like this are ridiculous on any level, but mainly because the big lie behind it is that even if someone did make that money, it is certainly not going to happen for you if you buy their BS “system” for $97 (before midnight because it’s so powerful they’ll be forced to take it off the market so it doesn’t get saturated. Yeah, right.)

Our rich friend above could have gotten access to a mailing list of 2 million. He might have spammed everyone on it and made a bunch. Big deal; I could rob a bank too.

For those who feel no compulsion to play by the rules, yes, they can make wads of cash fast. They can also find the FTC at their door, lose all their assets, be forced out of business and/or go to jail.

Are You Practiced In The Art Of Being Ethical?

I always made it a practice to rarely make income claims on my websites promoting my affiliate marketing training. Not that I did not have the stats to back it up. It was more of a strategic plan to gain the trust of my readers. It was also because I knew very well, as does every coach, mentor or trainer in any field, that most simply do not have what it takes.

I know this has cost me money in lost sales. Sadly, many prefer the “big lie”. They want to be sold by someone selling the dream. But I refused to do that.

You could say I’m practiced at it.

I’d prefer teaching students how to come up with a topic for their website, such as rocking chairs or keyboards, or any number of solid consumer products that are sure to stand the test of time and generate ongoing, steady revenue for site owners.

Maybe not as fast or as easy as some “opportunities”, but nevertheless it’s legal, ethical and bankable.

About the Author:

James Martell lives in White Rock, BC with his wife Arlene and their three children. James is a pioneer in the affiliate marketing industry and was successfully profiting with affiliate websites as early as 1999.


As you may have already noticed, things have drastically changed around here! What used to be RobbSutton.com is now BloggingLabs.com and that comes with a new design! So let’s dive into it as I explain what we did here and why the change.

Why the domain change?

RobbSutton.com started with a single purpose, to help other bloggers make a run at making money online through blogging. After getting numerous emails from other bloggers asking how I got so much product into review on Bike198.com, I decided to start RobbSutton.com as a way to talk to those bloggers publicly and not through just email. It was the simple theory of reaching more people in a personal way which is one of the foundations of blogging.

As time progressed, the blog continued to grow and expand. Through that expansion, RobbSutton.com actually grew past what I wanted from a personal blog standpoint. When you start to move past your personal name into a site that creating its own brand identity, you really need to have a domain name that is not your own personal name. This has several key positives to it.

  • Trust is built into brand names easier than personal. How many “wannabe” probloggers are out there talking about internet marketing and making money online through their personal name all looking to be the next John Chow (who also wishes his site was not on his personal name) without any real world experience or income to back up the claims?! A lot…don’t you want to separate yourself from those other bloggers? I do…
  • Branded domains are easier to sell in the future. While I nave absolutely no intentions of ever selling this site, you have to think about how having your content cemented to your personal name can affect your business plan down the road.
  • My personal domain can now stay personal. One of the biggest driving forces behind the move was this one. I want to create a personal blog on my name in the future to keep friends and family updated on our family. My wife and I are looking to start having children and it would be cool to have all of that information in one place. Since I do not want my name to be the brand anyway, having my personal domain stay personal is the perfect avenue to accomplish that goal.

So here we are…Blogging Labs…where we formulate money making blogs through real world experience that generates real income online.

First Impressions Start With The Name: Blogging Labs

As I racked my brain to think up of a domain name for the new site, I wanted something unique that was applicable to all past content as well as where I saw the blog heading in the future. Domain names are a tough animal to tackle as you not only have to come up with something catchy and memorable, but you also have to come up with a name that is actually available!

It took me about 2 weeks to actually nail this down and Blogging Labs is where we landed. At Blogging Labs, we formulate blogs that make money through tested and proven techniques on blogs in and outside of the MMO/internet marketing niche. With solid offerings like Bike198.com to back up the claims, we are going to keep pushing forward to innovate the way content is delivered online and consistently monetize that content. That is the core to Blogging Labs.

The New Design: Pagelines Platform Pro Framework

When I went looking to hack up a new design, I wanted something that was going to offer more flexibility than I had in the past. Previously, I had been using WooThemes and while I absolutely love their design and backend management system, I needed something that was easier to integrate key elements without a lot of hand coding and hacking.

Naturally, when you start looking at theme frameworks, there are four sources you are going to turn to.

At the end of the day, I ended up going with Pageslines Platform Pro because it had a lot of the key elements I needed as I sketched out exactly how I wanted this site to lay out. Platform Pro is the new dog to the race in terms of frameworks and so far I am incredibly impressed with the back end management, drag and drop functionality and incredible support from the developers. The other frameworks are all great and have an incredible reputation, but at the end of the day…I made the right choice for my abilities and this site. As you take a look around, you will see the elements that make this framework unique.

The Future and Blogging Labs

As we move forward into the ever evolving future of blogging, Blogging Labs is going to continue to pump out content that is going to help you increase your bottom line through real tutorials, techniques and reviews. Since we solidly believe that mindset is also key to success, we will continue to publish hard hitting articles to get you off your ass and working. Thank you for the support over the years with RobbSutton.com and we are looking forward to the future with Blogging Labs.


The following article on building an online brand is a guest post by Vik Tantry from There Is Money Everywhere dot com. Online branding is essential to success in blogging as you strive to set yourself apart from the rest of the noise.

A few weeks ago, I received an e-mail from a fellow blogger. He was frustrated because he had been blogging for more than a year and hadn’t achieved any real traction. He wanted to understand what he could be doing better. It’s never easy to build a brand, but there are definitely things you can do to help. Here are three tips to help you on your way to a stellar online brand:

Tip #1: Be Credible

Explain why people should listen to you

A good example is Jim Cramer from Mad Money. Although he is highly entertaining, he makes sure that people know about his prestigious investment background: top of his class at Harvard, investment banker at Goldman Sachs, and manager of a profitable hedge fund. I doubt he’d be as successful if he didn’t advertise these impeccable credentials

What if you aren’t a proven expert? That’s ok, but be sure to admit that you are willing to learn. Pat from Smart Passive Income does this very effectively. He is very upfront about the fact that he is learning how to make money online, and is extremely transparent with his process. This level of honesty has taken him exceptionally far and will continue to serve him well as he builds his user base.

Demonstrate value time and again

Glen Allsopp at Viperchill has some of the most detailed, thoughtful articles on web marketing. While most content on the web is only 300-500 words, Glenn typically writes long, rich posts that are anywhere from 1500-3000 words long. In just over a year, he’s built up a tremendous following and many of his posts are seen as “authoritative guides” on various topics.

Tip #2: Be Likeable

Stay positive

S^%t happens, but people will like you all the more if you can take it in stride. An exceptional example of this is Pat Flynn over at Smart Passive Income. In 2008, Pat was laid off from his job at an architecture firm. Instead of getting down on himself, he took it as an opportunity to build his own business and grow his personal brand. Around the world, thousands of readers (including yours truly) listened to his story and took inspiration from his outlook on life. Today, Pat’s blog is a major brand in the “making money online” space.

Be Responsive

There is no bigger turn-off than apathy. If you come across like you don’t care, people won’t care about you. The opposite is also true. If you go out of your way to respond to people, they are much more likely to keep your on the radar.

Be Humble

Neil Patel from QuickSprout is one of the more successful entrepreneurs at his age. He’s accomplished more at 25 than most people do in a lifetime. And yet, he never misses an opportunity to tell people that he’s not that smart and he’s actually made a lot of mistakes. He’s always willing to learn and never comes across like he’s “above” other people. This humility is par t of the reason that he has one of the most successful blogs in the world.

Tell a story about your past

Many successful “gurus” come from humble origins. Robert Kiyosaki was homeless in 1985, living out of his car. Real estate guru Dean Graziosi was raised by a single mother who made $90 a week. These “rags to riches” stories are inspiring and contribute heavily to your personal brand.

Tip #3: Be Funny

Humor sells. It also has a lot of value in drawing in people’s attention. Ramit Sethi at I Will Teach You To Be Rich does a masterful job of integrating humor within a traditionally boring topic: personal finance. His lighthearted, witty approach brought in a younger audience that was curious about personal finance but couldn’t get through the boring material.

But be careful: being funny isn’t the same as being mean. If you constantly poke fun at others, you risk coming across like a jerk. A better approach is to poke fun at yourself; things that you do wrong, mistakes you’ve made, etc. If you are going to make fun of others, try to use fake names to protect their identity.

Have you had success using these techniques? Please share in the comments.

Vik Tantry blogs about making money online to lead a better life at theresmoneyeverywhere.com.

Image by Mike Chen aka Metalman