Sunday, April 29, 2012

Internet Marketing: Creating Successful Passive Income Streams

The AdSense CodeThe AdSense Code (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Honestly, it really is a great time to be alive. I know that statement sounds incredibly tone-deaf in terms of what is currently happening with the state of global economies and individual finances. But it really is a great time to be alive because--as a result of the internet--you have the opportunity to create successful passive income streams and potentially increase your financial security. Yes, even during these tough times.
First of all, let's be clear what passive income streams are all about. A passive income stream is a manner in which someone generates income with somewhat minimal work from you or from your initial investment. For example, dividends earned from stocks and bonds could be an example of passive income. Rental properties are also considered passive income (although, I think any owner of a rental property would take umbrage with calling his work "minimal"). Examples of passive income streams are all around us. I was driving down the street the other day and noticed a coin operated laundromat. While the profit margins are probably not astronomical, that laundromat is generating its owner income with very little work from the initial investment.
Cash flow generated through this manner typically benefits you in many different ways. Individuals who have money-making endeavors on the side generally do not give up their primary income source, as they like to have the financial security that a 9 to 5 type of job can provide. Where they do benefit is that they are able to pay down their debts, save for incomes, or buy primary and secondary homes with very little strain on their finances. Why? Because this type of income is pure gravy.
There are probably an infinite number of ways that you can use the internet to create the different rivers of cash. In addition, it is important to diversify your income generating portfolio so your earnings don't dry up when a market does. A few years back, people were making millions of dollars getting people to try different offers or services online. The bottom fell out of that market almost overnight because companies were realizing that their was a ton of fraudulent activity going on. This will always serve as a cautionary tale for me as a reason to diversify your different income paths.
Here are the more popular ways to generate money online:
Affiliate Marketing - Generally speaking, affiliate marketing is one of the more popular ways that people make money online. Generally, affiliate marketing is where you set up a website for the sole purpose of highlight, promoting, and selling the products of others. Each time a visitor clicks through to the company from your link, you get a commission of the sale. The great part about this is that the tracking, processing, delivery, and payment of commissions are all handled by the company--not by you. Almost any company that sells a product online has an affiliate program--from Amazon, to INGDirect, to smaller internet marketers.
Blogging and Earning Ad Revenue - Years ago, people often talked about the "secret cash machine" from Google in the form of their AdSense program. It is simple, you set up a blog, you sign-up for free for AdSense, put the AdSense code on your blog and you make money each and every time someone clicked the ad. More recently, earning money through online advertising has become increasingly more difficult as people are becoming more and more blind to all those ads sitting on websites. However, it is not uncommon for some people to still pull in a couple of thousand dollars a month with this income stream. (Keep in mind though, their websites and blogs have enormous amounts of traffic.)
Selling Information Products - You can also make money by creating and selling information products. Many people spend money online because they want a quick answer to a desperate question. This is where eBooks, training videos, and podcasts can be incredibly helpful. Again, there are third-party companies that will take all the hard work out of delivering your ad and collecting the money on your behalf. (This time, you pay them a small commission for handling the transaction.) Ejunkie is one such site. The hardest part of creating this form of passive income stream is creating the actual information product.
Develop a referral service - I am fascinated by how people make money online and offline. Referral services are a cash cow for those that own them. Truly, that's all 1-800-Dentist is. Additionally, services that hook people up with doctors, lawyers, or therapists are all referral services. Develop a service in your community and advertise the heck out of it. (Be careful, though, as different states do have different regulations around this.)
After reading this, please don't say "I can't." It really is a great time to be alive because--now more than ever--it is easier to make money online. There are thousands of people out there who were unsure of their ability to generate money by using the internet. I know because I used to be one of them.
Jay Monroe is passionate about people making money online by creating smart passive income streams. He believes that it is something everyone can participate in, regardless of education level. Follow his free step-by-step approach to financial success.
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