16 Absolute Golden Keys To Internet Business Success

16 Absolute Golden Keys To Internet Business Success
image – shutterstock (under license)

This is a quick “power up” article. Print out these keys and post them on your wall. They will serve you well.

1. Don’t reinvent the wheel. All the data you need is available. Do what works.

2. You need an audience. If you have an audience you don’t need products (you can promote other people’s), you can generate leads, you can drive traffic, you can do it all.

3. You need customer retention. Don’t let them just fly away. Google “customer retention strategies”.

4. Locate genuine mentors and examples. Gurus are mostly snake oil salesmen. All sizzle and no steak. a) Look for people who are blowing it up without talking about it, and back engineer their method. b) Look for exceptionally bright young entrepreneurs who have just experienced vertical takeoff of their business and they cannot resist blogging about it and giving their method away free because they are so excited.

5. Continual learning is your friend. Study continuously, not being afraid of something because it seems difficult. The obstacle is very often exactly where the gold is.

6. Excel. In order for great success you have to do something better than others are doing it. Find out what that something is and hammer it.

7. Everything has a rise and a fall. Look at trends. Find something that is on the rise and position yourself to get in right as the curve begins to take off. By the time it has reached mass scale, with everyone and their dog wanting in… well, you know the old saying: “If you see a bandwagon, it’s too late”.

8. However, bear in mind that the internet is still growing. The number of people who actually have internet access is still growing. The number of people who can conduct a transaction online is still growing. Position yourself. There was one bubble in the late 90s. There has been another one in the last few years since Web 2.0. And e-commerce is still picking up steam.

9. Build. Do not stop. As an old internet Mastermind once said “Fill the fucking server til it is running on one leg”. If you stand around waiting for results, there will not be any. Better to overshoot the target than do just enough. So if you think you need a 1000 article website to achieve authority site status, aim for 2000. Or 10,000. And make them better than anyone else’s. If you can make a certain amount of money in one niche with one site, then why not go into 10 niches with 10 sites? It’s all there for the taking but you have to apply ass to chair and do it.

10. This is a long game. Look to create assets that will still have value in 20+ years. Some things are stepping stones but funnel that wealth back into assets with long term yield.

11. Email is still hot. – and will probably be for many years, despite all other messenger systems that have come in. Major businesses still use email for internal dialogue, for document transfer… the entire infrastructure of the web is built on it. It is a fundamental part of the internet in the same way that websites are. Email marketing is still one of the best things you can learn.

12. Outsource. You do not have time to do everything and you should not even be trying to. A good business is one that can run without you, in the same way that an engine can run without the person who invented the engine being present. If you are trying to do it all yourself, then your business does not have a business model worth having and it cannot scale. You can scale faster with a team, and outsourcers need the money.

13. Eliminate single points of failure. If you build your entire revenue stream around one traffic source, one product, one niche, then you are going to end up a victim when they make an algorithm change, or the product goes out of fashion, etc. Everything will have a fall. To be robust, diversify. Be distributed. I know businesses with 100 employees that went pop overnight because Facebook made an algorithm change. They thought they had it made with their 10M Facebook fans, and did not develop on other platforms. Bye bye.

14. The content that works on one platform will work on another. So long as it is in the right format. What I mean is this. A slamming headline is a slamming headline. You can use it for a Youtube video, for a Facebook post, etc etc etc. Data mine. Use research tools of all kinds to yield the top performing content of all kinds. Collect it and store it in your own private databases. This information is gold. Oh man I am giving you the keys to the kingdom here, I must be crazy. The same goes for images. And once again, see #1. The data you already need is all out there.

15. The content that works in one decade will probably work in another. What I mean is this. News becomes old news, and there are of course trends, and things that become worthless. But much of what worked like gangbusters 10 years ago, will work like gangbusters all over again. Even if a post went viral, most of the people in the world have not seen it. But how will you see that content? Ever tried scrolling back more than a month through a Facebook feed and seeing how it chokes the browser ridiculously after a certain point? My point is this. Start collecting databases and folders of slamming content now. Posts that went viral. Images that got 10,000 shares. In 10 years time, when everyone has forgotten about that post, you can bring it back, make your own version and have something that will predictably go viral all over again.

16. Don’t steal; add value. Borrow good ideas, legally. But learn copyright law and stick to it. Get permission for image use. Don’t lift articles, write your own (and if you have no value to add then why are you doing this anyway?)

17. Begin it now. In the words of Dan Pena, just fucking do it.

The Long Game – How To Build Internet Income That Will Keep Coming In For Life

I am a lifer in this business. I started my first internet venture in 1999 and don’t see any reason to stop. This is great and honestly I feel like it is still gathering momentum.

In this tutorial I will share some of the “meta concepts” and strategies that have enabled me to turn this into a profitable business venture with long term revenue potential.

Now How Is This For An Awesome Trend?

An ideal business venture is one that keeps on paying you after you have stopped working. The internet gives that opportunity more than any other type of venture that I can think of!

For example one small 5-page informational website that I made in 2008 continues to generate revenue even though I have not touched it in years. It’s not a huge amount these days – $143 in 2018 – but the point is, it’s been free money for 10 years. And there is little reason that I can see why this site will not continue to generate money for the rest of my life. No doubt I will have to make updates occasionally – but when I am old and past the point where I have the energy to work, it’s going to be really sweet to have this residual income – and income from all my bigger, more profitable websites – still rolling in.

Let’s look at some trends – courtesy of our dear Wikipedia (speaking of websites with long term viability!)

Internet Users Per 100 Inhabitants
Image – https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Global_Internet_usage (lic. under CC)

Now how is that for a business trend? It truly is the perfect wave – and it is still building! The developed world is at 81% internet saturation and still rising – there is no reason why it will not hit 90% as older people who were already too old to begin are “replaced” by younger people who will adopt as soon as they are old enough to do so.

See how the developing nations are still only at under 50% internet access? It seems almost certain that they will “follow suit” and end up past 80%. China, with a population of 1.4 billion, is only at around 58% internet penetration (most of whom use mobile devices)!

There is still enormous headroom. We can reasonably anticipate that at least another 2 billion people will come online in the next decade or two.

Globally, this leaves enormous room to cater to the mass of people coming online for the first time, who will be jumping into the infinite pool of websites, social media portals, apps, tutorials, videos, emails, infographics, images, memes and so on.

That’s a megaton of web traffic. And all these people will be reading articles, watching videos, sharing funny images and clicking ads, just like every other internet user does. These new users will most likely be eager for exactly the same material that has already proven successful in the developed world within the last decade.

You can have a piece of that pie. It’s the biggest pie there has ever been – and it is there waiting for you to take it.

There are numerous other valuable infographics on the aforementioned Wikipedia page. Worth a look. You can see that most of the African continent is still to come online. Big business has noted this fact and Africa is the subject of heavy Chinese and other international investment. What can you do with these trends?

Evergreen Content

This is a long play. I’m creating content for the future. News quickly becomes old news, whereas “evergreen content” is information that stays both true and relevant as time goes on. For example, let’s say you have videos teaching people how to tie knots in rope (I have not investigated this topic). You can see that the method of tying a half-hitch is going to be exactly the same in a hundred years as it is now. So a tutorial on how to tie knots is a perfect example of evergreen content and it has almost infinite scope. The composition of a certain mineral will be the same in a million years as it is now. Oxygen will still be oxygen. Trees will still be trees (let’s hope). And historical facts will remain forever the same, frozen in time for eternity.

What other examples of evergreen content can you think of? Make a list, because this could be your gold mine of the future…

If at all possible you want to avoid a niche that is doomed to obsolescence. For example, gadget reviews are great, and read by millions – but most people will no longer be interested in gadget reviews from 2003. If you are in that game, you will need to keep on creating gadget reviews for evermore. Now this might be possible of course, if you develop a trusted brand and then outsource. But your old content is going to become obsolete. As soon as you stop working, the balloon starts coming down.

Changes In Technology

One aspect that is crucial to navigate is technological progress. Significant changes in technology are always possible, not always predictable and render many a business model obsolete. It’s good to study these trends and anticipate the curve of where things are headed.

Trends in websites come and go – but websites themselves appear to be here to stay. They are the backbone of the way the internet works. Email similarly – surprisingly to most people – has remained as a fundamental of internet use despite the proliferation of new communication apps. It is still the mode of choice for business users. Email lists, built carefully by offering value to interested parties, are going to continue to be revenue generating assets as far into the future as I can envisage.

Body Of Work

One good thing about internet content is that it can very often be repurposed. Created a blog a few years ago that still has relevant and useful content? Great! You have the script for your Youtube video series! An entire new audience awaits. As a content creator, think about your overall body of work and its value in 1, 5, 10, 20 years time and beyond. Can you imagine Beethoven’s Youtube channel – if he were still alive? He would be getting incredibly rich even today from work completed over 200 years ago. This is what happens when you create something timeless. Media formats come and go, but a great composition is a great composition and will likely be acknowledged as such as far into the future as we can imagine. Ancient books, sometimes over 2000 years old, are still read and enjoyed by millions. Art of the early civilizations sometimes still fetches prices higher than the amount people will earn in their lifetime.

Now you might not be a master composer or era-defining artist. But you still have much value – and there has never been a time with as much potential for you to share your skills, knowledge and vision – and to reach potentially billions of people.

Start NOW

…and go like crazy. It is definitely not too late. But you want to get these ideas out there asap. Even if a website is making a dollar a day, it is beneficial. So you keep going, keep adding sites and then one day you find that all this income has built up from a tiny little snowball into a giant snowball.

Build Content That People Want

You can already see what people want because all the data is out there. Millions upon millions of headlines, images and topics have been tested and the data is visible in terms of the number of likes, clicks, shares and comments that things received. You don’t need to reinvent the wheel. Pick something that works and do it better in some way, then get it in front of some of the billions of new internet users who will be coming online in the coming years.


There is a certain aspect of your work in which you are “irreplaceable”. Your unique signature or knowledge. Identify it – and “replace yourself” for the other stuff. Not only is it much harder if you do it all yourself, but you simply cannot scale as fast as you can if you have an entire team cracking away.

Share The Knowledge You Already Have And Learn More

You are already an expert in many things. I mean that seriously. You could probably make a Youtube tutorial on how to boil an egg. I’ll bet there is one on there with over a million views! Whatever you are really good at, you have the potential to help others with. As you go along, you can study new things and effectively “learn in order to teach”. There’s no limit to the quantity and quality of educational materials of all kinds that can be created.

Identify And Play To Your Strengths

There are the things that you wish you were good at, and there are the things you are really good at. When I was a kid, I wanted to be good at cricket. But it was simply not one of my strengths. If I had persisted doggedly, I might still be broke. Understand what you are actually good at and work within that arena.

Test Multiple Ideas And Keep Building

You cannot always predict what will work. So you want to try out multiple ideas. I have done this. I have over 20 websites. Some are kicking ass, some are not. And it was not always the ones I anticipated it to be. So it is advisable to test multiple ideas and see what works best.

The same principle applies to content. You cannot possibly create one piece of content and expect to retire off of it. It is just too unpredictable. No – a Youtube channel creator will create a hundred videos and take notes of what is working – culling the weaklings and creating more of what works.

Same with articles. A few of your articles will hit it out of the park. A few will tank. And the majority will be somewhere in the middle. You can’t always tell which ones it is going to be. In 2013 I put a simple blog post on one of my sites and posted it to our Facebook pages. I didn’t think anything special of it, assuming it was probably going to “do ok”.

It maxed out the server. My Google Analytics realtime showed over 2000 people currently on the site – all day – and it essentially redlined the web hosts capacity. I have no idea how many more people simply gave up because they could not view the page. That still remains my most-shared piece ever, and the number of shares registered by the “Share This” plugin is over 1.5 Million, which is completely insane.

I made enough money to buy a car off of that post. And I did. 🙂

But it wouldn’t have happened unless I had adopted a “build it anyway” mentality. Have a great idea for a website reviewing outdoor clothes? Build it. Think there might be a niche for tutorials on how to do basic jobs that a lot of people apply for? Build it. You can make Youtube tutorials teaching people how to do virtually ANYTHING you can think of, from dance moves to how to clean a kitchen. Not sure if it will go viral? Build it anyway – because you won’t know until you try.

A website is like a piece of “magic real estate” that you can always improve and add to later. So get started now and keep going. Don’t sit back on your laurels waiting for a site to come to its peak form – that might take a year or more. Keep building and remember that in this instance it is better to overshoot the target than to fall short. Expand your body of work, develop more, monetize, keep going. Start now, get perfect later.

There you go. That’s why I am at my desk on a Saturday evening. While drunks are shouting and screaming out in the street as I type, I’m inside making coin. They will wake up with a headache, I will wake up richer. Where would you rather be? It’s in your hands.

How To Make Awesome Money On Pinterest (Full FREE Tutorial!)

How To Make Awesome Money On Pinterest
Image – Pixabay / makingwealth.info

Here’s another of our monster free tutorials! Let’s get right into it.

Introduction: Why Pinterest?

Pinterest.com rocketed to being one of the world’s most popular websites in a very short span of time. Originally launched in 2009, Pinterest hit 10 million monthly visitors in January 2012, making it one of the fastest social media web sites in history to achieve this milestone. Pinterest surged forward, blasting its way to #15 most popular site on the web by late 2012. It’s dropped a little in 2018 and now sits at #28 in the USA and #77 in the world. However Pinterest is still our business’s overall #2 source of income-generating traffic, second only to Facebook and way above Google at #3. Instagram is all the rage but honestly we have done far better with Pinterest.

Although the majority of Pinterest users are on the site for social / leisure purposes, the site has real business potential: What makes Pinterest so interesting from an internet marketer’s point of view is that it can drive traffic to other sites by the boatload. According to Shareaholic, in January 2012 Pinterest drove more traffic than Youtube, Google Plus and LinkedIn combined. Pinterest is a traffic monster.

Pinterest has been found to generate traffic that converts well – something that cannot be boasted by all of the popular web sites. According to a PriceGrabber survey, 21% of users had purchased something seen on the site. (source – Beth Haydn – Pinfluence: The Complete Guide to Marketing Your Business with Pinterest ). Our own experience backs this claim: We also noticed that visitors from Pinterest tend to be more engaged and have a higher click-through rate on ads and products. If you do it right, Pinterest can generate significant traffic (thousands of visitors per day) and corresponding ad revenue.

A couple more stats:

1) “Petplan’s Pinterest success began when the company added the “pin it” button to their website, included Pinterest “follow” buttons in their email footers and social campaigns, and optimized site content for Pinterest. The following quarter Petplan saw an 87 percent increase in new site traffic, a 35 percent increase in page views, and a 12.5 percent increase in insurance quote requests.”

2) “Pinterest generates four times as much revenue per click as Twitter and 27 percent more revenue per click than Facebook.” (source)

These are incredible statistics – and what this means, essentially, is that Pinterest is a tremendous opportunity for the creative entrepreneur and the person seeking online revenue opportunities.

How Pinterest Works

Pinterest is very simple to understand and use. Users “pin” images to pages called “boards” and explore the boards created by others. What keeps users hooked into the site is not only the fantastic image collections that can be viewed and the ease with which they can be created, but the ability to “repin” favorite images to your own boards, creating collections of your own favorite images.

Each pin’s individual page also features a huge “More like this” selection below the main image that greatly encourages further exploration – as it displays a diverse selection of appealing related images, which you can then visit, explore and pin to your own boards. It’s like scrapbooking on steroids, and Pinterest auto-arranges the images in a neat, attractive fashion – enabling you to build surprisingly elegant, artistic and inspiring collections of “things you like” of all kinds – swiftly.

What really makes Pinterest work for the marketer is that (unlike Instagram), pinned images automatically embed the link to the web page where the image was originally pinned from – plus a price tag is auto-added if the item is for sale! The nature of Pinterest means that it is suited to shoppers – who like to make collections and wish lists of things they like. This is superb news for internet marketers.

Pinterest is hugely popular with the female demographic (60%) – who are delighted to be able to “window shop” and effortlessly make awesome collections of desired items of all kinds, including recipes, hairstyles and jewelry. Pinterest also works super well for interior design, infographics, cute animals and “how-to” tutorials of all kinds. It is also known to be working well for artisans who create objects with strong visual appeal. The number of uses for Pinterest is limited only by the imagination, as you can theme your boards around anything you like.

According to Pinterest’s Wikipedia page, “The most popular categories on Pinterest that got the most popular pins are food & drink, DIY & crafts, and women’s apparel.”

How To Use Free Pinterest Traffic To Generate Ad Revenue

A typical way that internet marketers make money with Pinterest is to create pages on their own web sites / blogs with both written content and highly attractive, shareable images, then placing advertising on the pages, and then pinning the images to Pinterest, where they will hopefully be repinned and seen by many people. Some of the Pinterest viewers will click through to the web site, and some of the traffic to the web site will visit the advertising, generating commissions, leads or click revenue.

This formula works: Revenue is highly variable and will of course depend on the quantity of images, “virality” of the images, the size of the audience following the Pinterest boards that the images are pinned to, the quality of the article and on the relevance / click through rate of the advertising.

There is genuine potential for the creation of an income stream simply using this method of Pinterest traffic => Web site => Ads and it should be possible to make an auto-pilot income of several hundred dollars per month from a single site using this method – so long as you are pinning several high quality images a day, and also using the group boards method (see below).

There are three main ways your images will get pinned to Pinterest: 1) You pin them on your own boards on your own Pinterest account 2) You pin them on group boards (tutorial below) 3) They are pinned by visitors to your site who decide that they like what they see and will share on Pinterest.

To get a decent revenue from this method depends, more than anything else, on posting the kinds of images that get a lot of repins, thus being seen by many more people. Motivational / humorous / “love” quotes, with a nice typeface or background image are always popular – some having over 1,000 repins. However, these typically do not drive a huge amount of traffic off-site. You will get better success creating images which compel click-through: The typical method is to include the headline of your information pages in large text in the actual image itself.

Browsing through the “popular” section of Pinterest we can quickly see strategies marketers and blog owners are using successfully. It’s also easy to see the legions of bloggers and internet marketers who are not using Pinterest effectively to maximize traffic and revenue. Once you have studied this tutorial, you will quickly be able to see the strategies used by the few who are hitting it out of the park and the mistakes of the many who aren’t. As with other marketing methods, a spark of creativity is often (but not always) needed to generate something that is both popular and relevant to your target site; however there are also technical foundations and inside knowledge required to win the game.

If you want to check how well your site is doing on Pinterest, go to http://pinterest.com/source/. (replace with your site URL. You can see what is getting pinned and how much interest it is generating.

Growing Your Pinterest Following

Pinterest, like any social media platform, requires a significant time investment up front in order to create a really successful account with a big following. A large following generates a large “reach” – whenever you pin an image, it appears (briefly) on the home page of each of your followers – meaning that if you have a lot of followers, you will get a burst of repins and the potential for some significant traffic back to your target site.

There are numerous ways to grow your Pinterest following. The first and most obvious is to have a great account name and create numerous compelling themed boards with a lot of appealing content. In general, boards with more images tend to attract more followers. It’s simple math; the more content you have the greater your potential slice of visibility.

There are various ways to get images to build up your boards’ content:

1) Re-pin other content appearing on Pinterest (easy and you can build popularity / followers but none of the images link back to your site of course)
2) Pin content appearing elsewhere on the web (i.e. using the “Pin It” button) that you can add to your bookmarks bar. Also easy – but images pinned from other websites of course don’t link to your site.
3) Create / remix your own – using photography / graphics software.
4) Free public domain images. (TONS at the page linked! Download them and use however you wish). See also our tutorial on How To Make Awesome Money Using FREE Public Domain Resources
5) Purchase image use from image library such as fotolia.com shutterstock.com – then edit as required, post to your own site and then pin.
6) Uploading your own photo collections. I found an AMAZING app that can allow you to do this in bulk with a few clicks:
https://bulkpinner.app/ This app totally rocks. You have to fill in the information about each pin but you can just add a dot and then hit tab. On my first use of the app I was able to upload 126 images in about 1 minute with a few clicks.

Note – it’s considered a Pinterest no-no (as well as against copyright) to download images from google images and then upload them to Pinterest (or pin directly from google images). This does not provide a link through for the image creator and so causes annoyance and may lead to DMCA takedowns and even an account ban. If you are going to pin images you find from the web, pin them from the actual page of the owner of the image, so that they get the link benefit of their hard work.

You should also link to your Pinterest from your various other internet real estate (website, other social media profiles, email list etc) and encourage people to follow you on Pinterest.

Another great way to gain followers that really works is to follow other Pinterest accounts, some of whom will follow back. The number of people you can safely follow per day is disputed – with various people claiming “200 people every 2 hours for old accounts and 50 every 2 hours for new accounts” or “300 per day”. The limits are also subject to change: The safest thing to do is create a “disposable account”, develop it “naturally” for a while and then test perhaps 50 or 100 follows per day. Pinterest will give a warning first time that you are going too fast. Push the limit and your account will disappear in a puff of smoke…

I have used follow bots in order to build accounts and this has been very successful. The best of these allow you to unfollow people who have not followed you back – so you can ‘recycle’ and keep going. If you are going to do this, use an account that is smaller so that you are not risking a high value property. I had success with Pin4Ever‘s “power follow” tool – great results.

Use Pinterest in conjunction with a related Facebook page (see Facebook chapter). Many of the most successful Pinterest users are “combining” their social media presence, running a Facebook page and Twitter account dedicated to the same subject, casting a wider net and diverting streams of traffic towards their intended targets. Observe successful boards and see if you can spot this strategy in action.

There are also ways to buy followers but I would avoid these as they may be bot accounts. As with all social media, you want genuine followers every time.

The Best Traffic Tip: Do What Works

There are two aspects to this: Shareability and clickthrough. The difference between a mediocre Pinterest image that does not send much traffic, and an awesome Pinterest image that sends tons of traffic, is huge. Data mine to see what works. Take a look at Pinterest’s popular category and look at the # of reins images are getting. In this category, it’s not uncommon to see images with several hundred or even thousands of repins. This reveals the style of images that are popular. However, not all of these generate clicks. In general, tall images with a strong headline embedded in the image will get the most clicks. Top 10 lists, tutorials and simple “how to’s” that offer easy solutions to commonplace problems are gold. When you have a large following, you can look at your Google Analytics to see which images are pulling the most Pinterest traffic and do more of that. We have a full tutorial on creating Pinterest images below.

Pinterest Account Overall Limits

From Pinterest themselves: You can have up to 500 boards, 200,000 pins including pins added to group boards, and 50,000 follows. But – good news – Pinterest also welcomes you to create new accounts with a new email address. There is in other words unlimited potential to scale.

Avoiding The Spammers

Your copyright images WILL get stolen and pinned by spammers, who will substitute your link for their own; using your images to drive traffic to their own websites. The better and more successful your images, the more this will happen. Just visit one of your successful images on Pinterest and you will likely see other stolen images of yours in the suggested images section below it! We have so many images of our own on Pinterest now that this happens without fail. Our images have been stolen literally thousands of times. Pinterest as a rule won’t do much about it until you take action; you will need to “Report Pin” and follow through with the DMCA copyright claim. This is a slightly tedious process but note that you can report numerous images within one filing. Even so, it is time consuming and feels like and endless game. You may opt instead to “invent faster than they can copy” and spend your time creating new stuff instead. However, you are doing a small service by whacking the image thieves; if enough people do it, and their accounts keep on getting banned, they will give up and go leech somewhere else instead…

Exploding Your Traffic Using Pinterest Group Boards

This technique is somewhat underground but I’d say it’s responsible for at least 75% of my Pinterest traffic at the current time.

A group board (sometimes also known as a “contributor board”) is one which is “open” to multiple pinners. Some of these group boards are very popular, having tens (or even hundreds) of thousands of followers. Imagine the scenario where you are a member of a dozen good group boards related to your topic. Whenever you have a new image to pin, you can pin it not only to your own board, but to several others also – giving a massive boost to your traffic. The more of these (relevant) group boards you can locate and join, the more traffic you can drive – it is as simple as that.

Finding Group Boards

There are free resources and methods that enable you to find group boards easily:

1) One of the best is Pingroupie – which has a massive, searchable database of group boards with some very useful search functions. I would advise not bothering with group boards that have less than 10,000 followers – the audience size is too small to be worth the effort.

2) Finding the people who have already joined a lot of group boards, and examining their account. Here is a quick example of someone who has joined a ton of group boards: http://pinterest.com/kuabt/

Once you have found a big group board with thousands of members and pins, take a look also at the homepage of the person who created the board (such as the example above), and also the people who are doing significant amounts of pinning… quite often these contributors are running this method – and also signed up for a lot of other contributor boards, which will be listed in their profile.

Another clever method is to use a “board search” together with your keyword; as follows – (replace “yourkeyword” with the topic you are looking for):


Joining group boards

In order to join a board, you need to receive an invitation from the board owner. There are several possible ways to go about getting an invite. Quite often, the owner will leave instructions either in the board itself or on their home account, saying something like “To pin to this board, please ________”

Sometimes you will be required to send an email request, or leave a message on a recent pin (together with @Boardnameowner which will help your message be seen by them). Other times, you may find that there are no obvious ways to contact the owner – and I have achieved success sending them either a nice Tweet, or a Facebook message, or even visiting their own website and using the contact form provided. Contact them however you can, just get on as many boards related to your content as possible! 🙂

There are some general codes of conduct when it comes to pinning on group boards, and individual account owners may have their 0wn specific rules. In general:

a) Don’t “flood” any one board with lots of pins in a “block”. A few per day, spread out over time, is optimal. Some board owners specify a max number of pins per day.

b) Keep it relevant! The biggest single grievance is when people pin irrelevant crap to a board. Target the boards that are going to appreciate your contributions.

c) Make a good caption for the pin, if it does not have one already. Often, the headline of the page it comes from is optimal.

d) Build up some of your own boards in your own account. You don’t want to have an account that is 100% group boards, as it may make you look as though you are just there to spam.

This is the kind of work that you can outsource to a good worker, for example using onlinejobs.ph as I do. I now have an outsource worker managing my entire pinterest campaign and keeping spreadsheets for everything.

Other Pinterest Revenue Ideas

As with all social media platforms, you don’t necessarily need an audience of your own; there are countless others who have a huge audience and very often these people are in great need of ways to monetize their following.

Thus there is also a further possible revenue model in outreach to Pinners who already have access to a huge audience – either their own followers or a large number of group boards, and offering them a small revenue to pin your images! You can also find people on fiverr.com offering services such as these. You can use Google Analytics to find your most successful pins, and promote those using paid services such as these. Note that it is always best to promote your strongest material, rather than the weakest. You will get the best Return On Investment, the most traffic and revenue, boosting stuff that has already done well. Don’t focus your efforts on boosting content that got the worst response.

Pinterest also has their own advertising platform but I have not used it at this time.

How To Use Pinterest For Affiliate Marketing

I decided to make my own investigation into whether Pinterest could be used to drive traffic not only to ad-enabled content pages, but to product pages on other sites, for which I was an affiliate; using my affiliate link and thus generating commissions on sales.

I decided that I wanted to experiment with Amazon products (I already had an account as an Amazon Associate), and that I wanted to promote jewelry (I already had a functional jewelry web site).

I quickly learned that Pinterest, while embracing the use of the site for general promotional purposes, is blocking affiliate links, showing an error page instead of taking the user through to the intended site. This is understandable – otherwise Pinterest would quickly end up way more spammed than it already is, which is pretty heavily spammed… you might also lose your account for pinning affiliate links directly.

So I needed a workaround. I could not simply repin images directly from Amazon product pages – because the embedded link could not be my affiliate link. But I was confident I could link to my own pages, so long as I could host the product images from there. So I wrote to Amazon, asking them if it was permitted to use their images on my own site. They responded very quickly (good old Amazon, always have done!), stating that so long as the images were only going to be used to promote Amazon products, it was ok. Great!

I created a few pages on my own website showcasing Amazon products, and created optimized images from the generic product images Amazon supplied. I set the finished image actual sizes to 400×300, yet instructed my own web page to display the images at “thumbnail size”. I instructed the viewer to “click the image for more information” – taking them (through my affiliate link) to Amazon’s page for the product.

Thus – when the images were pinned from my site onto Pinterest, they would appear at 400×300 and link to my site, yet on my own site, the link embedded in the image was my affiliate link to Amazon’s page for the product. So the viewer would need to make two clicks but on my site I can encourage them to click through for more product information.

I created 2 jewelry boards on Pinterest, using a total of 31 pins. Another thing to bear in mind is that one might not be tremendously popular with other pinners if one’s pinboards were simply a “retail catalogue”. So I created several other “non-commercial boards” with other content on them – hairstyles, fashion and so on.

Then, I left it all alone. What happened…? I made a little money while I slept!

In the few weeks since pinning the jewelry pics, I made 4 sales, netting $27.21 in commissions. Doesn’t seem like much – but it’s interesting considering this was a simple first experiment – with a new Pinterest account starting with no followers, and I didn’t pin very many images or create many boards! I also didn’t pin any of the images to any group boards. I probably generated some additional Adsense revenue from the traffic, although I didn’t measure this. There may be some potential here worth investigating.

I once read that Pinterest may block “too many links from one account to the same site” – meaning that the amount of pins could be limited. However this may be false: I have seen other pages with tons of links to the same site – so at this point I am carrying on. Mix in a few pins to other sites to be safer if you wish but here is an example of someone who is rocking Pinterest (this board has over 10,000 followers) and sending all the traffic to their own blog / affiliate offers. I haven’t looked far into this enough to see if there are copyright issues with this blog – but they must be making solid affiliate revenue…

How To Make Pinterest Graphics That Drive Traffic

The info in this critical section of the tutorial is money and will allow you to blow away the competition!  For this tutorial I am going to assume that you / your graphic designer have the required technical skills in Photoshop or whatever design platform you are using.

Now you can create any image and post it on Pinterest, however some images will generate lots of traffic and some will not. After years of doing this we have isolated the key factors that go to make up a successful Pinterest graphic.

We have multiple websites pulling consistent traffic from Pinterest and these deliver an ongoing revenue stream. Here’s an example of the consistent traffic on one of them:


You can see how it always spikes on the weekend…

In order to generate ongoing traffic, your overall goal should be to build up a large number of usable images and to be pinning consistently both to your own boards and group boards. But focus on making great images first, before focusing on making a lot of images.

The VITAL thing to focus on is making the kind of image style that is going to get a lot of clicks and shares. You need the RIGHT kind of images and there is a formula for this.

Put yourself in the mindset of the average Pinterest user who is ‘consuming content’. They are most likely either searching for content on a specific topic, or randomly scrolling through images related to something they just looked at.  Assuming you have put your headline and keywords in the info box, and given your image a filename that has the keywords in it, your pinned image will be seen, but it appears in a sea of hundreds of others – and so it needs to “pop” in a big way. You need to max out the appeal.

The first thing to note is that the headline should always be in the graphic in a very large, clear, bold font, together with one or more attractive images.  Your logo should be in there somewhere but it can be v small, because no-one really cares about that at this point:

15 Amazing shipping container homes

This (above) is one of our old-style images. This is a nice graphic and these did well in the old days on Facebook…. It’s ok, but it was never really optimized for pinterest and we can make something 10 times as good now.

The next thing to note is the image size and dimensions.  Here’s an example of how a good Pinterest image stands out:

more like this

This is a generic Pinterest “More like this” section. You can see that in the “sea of images”, The Eco Experts have the tallest image and it is basically about 3x as visible as the others – and a large part of the reason for this is because Pinterest gives tall images more “pixel real estate”. Hardly anyone will notice a small, square or flat image on Pinterest – because these gets a tiny amount of the screen and just doesn’t stand out at all. So you can easily make tall versions of your images that stand out like this and you will get more clicks!

The height needs to be just right. If you make your graphic super crazy tall, Pinterest automatically cuts off part of the image when it is in the feed! We researched it and the maximum size ratio before it cuts off some is 1:2.1 – though note that this figure seems to change often. We have made all our pinterest graphics 600×1260 ; it will give great visibility and not get cropped.

By all means test bigger sizes and see if those get pinned in full. Some are reporting 735 width and unlimited height and (as of Oct 2018) it appears that Pinterest may be displaying taller images once again!

Note that images need to be more than 80 pixels in size to be picked up by Pinterest. Thumbnails won’t be found – for good reason. You won’t want to create images this small anyway – as their Pinterest visibility will be tiny! Also note that anything within flash sites or frames cannot be shared on Pinterest, neither will web page backgrounds.

The eco experts did pretty well, but their words are still, in my opinion, not anywhere near big enough for maximum visibility. Make yours with monster size words because then your image just jumps out more than 99% of what is on the screen.  Remember also that most people simply don’t do this and never will, so you get an immediate, big advantage!

Now this (below) is a GREAT pinterest graphic, and look – 20k repins, which is MEGA. They paid some bills with this graphic 😉

How To Make Money On Pinterest4
Image – homebnc.com

I still think it could be better and that their words are a bit small and weak. But they made the whole thing very appealing and it really sparks some excitement. Note how they laid out their photos.  There is one “show piece” photo that has the wow factor, and then a few small ones underneath, that you can’t really see, and so it makes you want to click them to make it bigger.  Also, you think, hmm, there are 50 altogether, but I can only see 7 thumbnails. That means there are many more in their article. This adds to the curiosity also.

Grabs attention → makes sense quickly → generates excitement → sparks curiosity = they got the click and the share.

It’s a good exercise to just go on Pinterest and search for something, it can be anything like ‘best living room designs’ or whatever, and then just scroll, and see which images jump out at you. You can see that only a few will jump off the page, and that most people are doing it totally wrong!

There are just a few people that really understand this. It’s a ‘social media secret weapon’.  Most people are just posting whatever image they have and hoping for the best. Even the majority of graphic designers often don’t really get how pinterest works (because they are not internet marketers!) and don’t know how much of a huge difference it makes when the image really rocks!  If youe design our images specifically to do well on pinterest, we will have a big advantage. And it’s not really all that difficult once you see what is required. But you need to tailor your graphic to each social media site because they all have different requirements.  So you will end up with a custom version of the graphic for Pinterest, one for Facebook, one for Instagram, one for your Youtube placeholder, and so on.

The Only 12 Exercises You Need
Image – Buzzfeed

This (above) is not really a Pinterest image (it’s not tall) but this one did SUPER well on Facebook.  The wording is AWESOME. This is how you should do the words for Pinterest. I rate this wording 10 out of 10. A textbook example. See how it fills up the entire space, has great color and grabs your attention in just the right way. See also how the most important words are BIG, speeding up comprehension and making it “bite sized”.  The image choice also is awesome. It has one of the exercises, makes you want to check the other 11. Also the model is doing the pose well, and looks stylish in their black workout clothes. The whole thing is cool, cool, cool. Buzzfeed are Grand Masters of the game…

First you have to stand out from the “background noise” and make our pic the first thing people’s eyes are drawn to, on the page. Then, it has the appeal and quickly makes them want to click it. When you look at it this way, you can see how we can win this!

This one below is an example that is “not bad”. It got 1k repins. Nice big words that hit you right in the face. And some useful info.  But… their color scheme is… kinda ugly to be honest… really no sense of style lol. Also, I would have put the numbers in each image, i.e. 1 – Downward Dog, 2 – Cat Post…. so people can see 1,2,3,4,5 and then click because they want the other 4. Put the numbers in nice little colored circles also. People love numbered lists and love things that don’t involve “mental gymnastics” to figure out what is going on.

Nine Yoga Stretches
Image – beachbodyondemand.com

Now this one below is better. It got 4k shares.

Get Rid Of Back Pain
Image – hiitworkout.net

People love those simple illustrations. And the overall colors are nice. I still think the words could have been a lot bigger. But this is definitely a winner.

Now apologies to the creator, but this one (below) is a true disaster, can you see why? So many reasons….

Shipping Container
Image – freecycleusa.com

It grabs your attention, but, it does so like someone throwing a drink in your face.  First, that headline is a verbal train wreck. You are reading it and thinking huh??? “Number one best how to guide to.“  What???? Did they really write that and think it was good? It’s the most clumsy wording ever!  

There are many other things wrong with this picture.  Their graphic has poor layout, truly horrible color choice… and the funny little skyscrapers and houses have nothing to do with containers also. Also, their photos have ZERO appeal. Not only are they ugly (compare this junk yard with the amazing sparkle in the container homes in the winning pic from homebnc.com and ask yourself “Who on earth would want to live in one of these rusty old boxes?”) Also – they have cropped the photos so you just can’t even see what is going on there anyway.  They are failing at social media. This graphic was done by a rank amateur, not a professional.

One thing I have learned is that one awesome graphic will outperform 10 average or weak graphics, every time. So focus on quality first, quantity second.   A good graphic doesn’t have to be complex, but it has to have the right feel.  But you should always seek the one that is going to be a big winner, rather than just trying to create a huge number of run-of-the-mill images.  Do additional research, find other images that got a lot of repins and see if you can figure out why.

Image Creation Notes:

1 – DON’T STEAL IMAGES.  Aside from attracting DMCA takedown orders and potentially Pinterest account closure, it’s just bad form. Theft is theft.  Plus, you don’t need to. You can make your own stuff emulating winning ideas without directly stealing their content – and there are now plenty of websites such as pixabay where you can source free imagery to incorporate into your creations.

2 – Your best images WILL get stolen by others, who will scrub out your logo, and redirect your graphics to their own links.   It’s annoying but it happens at mass scale – and in my experience, Pinterest won’t do a thing unless and until you file a DMCA takedown request, then they will strike down the stolen content because DMCA is a form of legal action; they are required to.  So periodically, scan through your keywords on pinterest, and report the pin for stolen content to be taken down. The content thieves only get away with it because people are too lazy or preoccupied to file complaint. You can assign this task to a VA but it is an ongoing game of whack-a-mole…

3 – If you are adding your graphic to your web page (recommended!), don’t set a “tall” image to be the one that is scraped by the “Facebook debugger”. Otherwise, FB will cut off most of your image and this will negatively affect the clickability of the resulting Facebook post.
The Facebook Debugger tool will show you which image Facebook is pulling when someone drops your link on Facebook.  You are better off with a “flat” image being pulled by FB, so nothing is cut off. In other words, create a different version for Facebook that is of the size ratio 1200×628.   You can set the FB image either with the Yoast SEO plugin Yoast SEO plugin (WordPress) or with the “og:image” tag (HTML). Then run the debugger again to refresh the pulled image to your new one. There’s more to it than this but that’s a bit outside the scope of this tutorial.

4 – Keep your materials organized.  If you are making different versions of the image for Pinterest, Facebook, Instagram etc, you need a system to prevent things descending into chaos.  I keep all the “bits and pieces” from a post – article, images, source material, PSD files – in the same folder, and the images are labeled systematically – for example shipping-container-FB.jpg, shipping-container-PIN.jpg, shipping-container-IN.jpg.  Keep a copy of everything. It’s great to be able to return to old graphics later and make changes as needed – and a hassle to have to build it all again from scratch because you lost your .PSD file. A coherent naming and folder system will be your friend in the long run, and make sure that everyone on your team sticks to the same protocol.

How To Get Pinterest To Pull The Headline You Want When People Pin Your Images

This clever technique is an important aspect of driving traffic. As you no doubt know, the majority of internet traffic these days is driven by winning headline-image combos. These are what “gets the click”. However when you are pinning an image, you will have to put in the caption you want it to have. Now this is all very well for you, the savvy internet marketer, who knows all about killer headlines – but the majority of people pinning your image are regular folks who have never made a winning headline in their lives. If only there was a way to control the headline they are using.

Well, it turns out that there is!

When you hit the browser-based pin button, typically you have to fill in the info that you want in the text box.

The Success Library

“The Success Library” is not the full headline of the post that we want in there.

It turns out that the words pinterest auto-selects to populate this box are governed by the “alt tag” that is in the wordpress post:


It’s a bit hard to see here so here it is zoomed in:


It turns out that if you edit the alt tag, whatever you put in there will appear in the Pinterest box when you click the pin button!  

So in this example, I copy pasted the headline of the post into the alt tag…


And as if by magic…

Success Library 2

Can you see how this image will get a lot more clicks and repins, just through the correct use of the alt tag? You should go back through all your best blog posts, make tall images and put your strong headline in the alt tag.

The Wrap-Up:

There it is, now go make some money with Pinterest! Share this post with your friends and don’t forget to check out the rest of our full free tutorials on makingwealth.info