It’s always interesting to think about where the affiliate marketing space would be without blogging. Even though I’ve been making money online for 17 years now, everything changed quite a bit when I started blogging back in 2007. So many internet marketers have built up a name for themselves through a blog and it’s really helped people not only come into the affiliate marketing industry, but also solidify businesses and have them be more personable in the process. This is the exact process that Luke Kling has been going through with his blog and the ad network PeerFly that he’s been working with for many years now. It’s been a while since I ran the last interview on the blog, so I’m thrilled to kick things off with Luke from LukePeerFly.com!
1.) Please tell us about yourself and how you got into blogging?
My name is Luke Kling. I’m a 24 year old blogger, web developer, Affiliate Manager, and entrepreneur. I first started blogging way back in around 2004 and over the years have gotten more and more serious about it. My blog, LukePeerFly.com. recently celebrated it’s 2nd birthday. I decided to start blogging about making money online (primarily through affiliate marketing) because it’s my passion and I knew there were things I could share that would be beneficial to my readers. I am proud to say that over the past 2 years my blog has grown into one of the top 20,000 sites on the web according to Alexa.com and has generated millions of page views.
2.) What is the focus of your blog and why did you choose that niche?
My primary niche is affiliate marketing and general “make money online” information. I mix in different articles based on my interests or what I’m working on. For example, I was running several affiliate campaigns on Plenty of Fish a few months ago and that lead me to publish two separate POF case studies within 4 days of each other.
I work full time as an Affiliate Manager for PeerFly, Inc. and my blog is a side project I do in my spare time at home. I chose to write about affiliate marketing because it’s something I am very passionate about. I’ve been an Affiliate Manager for about 9 years now. I enjoy the industry and working with my publishers. Making money online is a great challenge and it’s fun to watch as others pursue that challenge and being an AM gives me the insight to fuel my own passion with affiliate marketing. Watching my publishers earn $350,000 in a week or receiving an email from a grateful publisher I’ve helped earn their first dollar. Those are the things that keep me interested in the affiliate marketing roller coaster and make me want to blog about it.
3.) How are you currently monetizing your blog traffic?
When I initially started my blog I did not monetize it at all. About 6 months after I started writing in it consistently I decided that it was time to try to make some money from it. So, I added a few AdSense ad units and shortly after started building an email list. I primarily make money from the ads on the site, paid reviews, and some affiliate sales. I reinvest a majority of the revenue from my blog into my AdWords retargeting campaign, media buys, Facebook ads, and other types of advertising. My blog is not my primary source of income so I like to use the revenue from it to build it up and make it better.
4.) What do you know now that you wish you knew when you first started blogging?
I really wish I would have started building my mailing list the day I launched my blog. There is so much opportunity to monetize a mailing list and use it to drive traffic to your blog. I know I missed out on hundreds if not thousands of subscribers had I at least had an opt-in form from the beginning.
5.) What are three blogs that you visit almost daily?
I read all the latest articles from the blogs on affposts throughout the day (shameless plug), but I find myself heading over to TechCrunch, Performance Marketing Insider, and USAToday (if you consider it a blog) daily.
6.) Can you give us three recommended tools/services that you use with your blogging?
I’ve mentioned my mailing list a few times and the company I use to manage my list is AWeber. They have fantastic delivery, great tools, and an awesome interface. I also use PopUp Domination to help build my mailing list. Nearly 80% of my subscribers come from PopUp Domination!
I use YOURLS and have a short domain I use to track my social media traffic (luke.am). If you’re using social media to drive traffic to your blog a nice short URL can help draw attention to your links and YOURLS is an awesome free tool to help you keep track of where the traffic is coming from.
7.) What advice would you have for someone who is just starting with their first blog?
Don’t make the silly mistake I did and start building your email list from day one! A simple opt-in form in your sidebar or below your post content is all you need to get started. Someday you will thank me!
8.) What’s the best advice or tip you’ve discovered about blogging since getting started?
Before I started my blog at LukePeerFly.com I went through two or three short lived blogs. It’s really important that you have a goal with your blog and that you are writing about a topic you’re passionate about. My goal is to make every person that reads my blog more money than if they had never read it. Making money online is my passion so it’s easy for me to find different things to write about within that niche.
9.) If you only had $100 to start a new blog, how would you use it?
First, I would get a shared server and a domain name in my niche. Then, I’d sign up for AWeber (first month is just $1 and then $19/month after that) and you should have just enough left to buy PopUp Domination.
10.) How can readers of the blog get in touch with you?
I’m available pretty much all day everyday:
Twitter – http://twitter.com/LukePeerFly
Facebook – http://fb.com/LukePeerFly
Feel free to use my contact form and send me an email:
Thanks again Luke for taking the time to share your advice and story with the Blogging Tips community. If you would like to learn about other bloggers and how they are finding success online, be sure to read through our blogger interview series.
Do You Get Lost in Blogging Busywork?
My prime business intent going forward is to get my 124 ebooks in 1 billion places. That’s it. I will promote other opportunities of course and prosper through multiple channels but it is a billion with my 124. Hold me to that. Wait a second. You won’t have to hold me to that. I’m pretty good about being accountable to myself.
Anyway, it’s been fascinating to see moments of my mind attempting to pull me to blogging busy work. You know exactly what I mean. For me, my day is largely about promoting my ebooks through Twitter, Facebook, blog posts, guest posts, Live broadcasts on Facebook, my podcast, and videos on Twitter as well. Other than promoting a few other opportunities, I do not intend to do anything else. But of course my mind tries to pull me toward blogging busy work at times. How does my sidebar look? Is my sidebar converting enough? What about blog comments? Should I open comments on specific old blog posts? Each question indicates some type of busy work that is not genuinely important or business building for your blog. Of course, most bloggers spend a fair chunk of their days on busy work and wonder why they struggle and fail so horribly. If you spend most of your time doing what does not matter, you will fail. But if you spend most of your time doing what does matter, creating and connecting and opening multiple streams of income, you will succeed. Blogging is that simple.
But blogging is not comfortable at all because even though we intellectually know to avoid busy work, our fears pull us in towards the silly activities. Some bloggers spend weeks or months or even years doing stuff that ultimately does not matter. Why spend hours on your blog design when it’s the content you create and the connections you build that lead to your greatest blogging success? You have to be honest with yourself when it comes to blogging. Being straight with yourself makes the difference between success and failure.
I usually catch myself within seconds to minutes of being engaged in busy work that does not really make a difference. I scan my email in seconds. I am down to that number now. But I recall my struggling days when I would be in my email for 20 minutes or an hour or longer every day. I tried to read every word of every email. I tried to engage every silly sponsored post pitch. Huge mistakes. I wasted so much time on what didn’t matter. You know what matters? Creating helpful content and building genuine connections with human beings by helping other bloggers. Do these things and you position yourself to succeed. Add income streams and you position yourself to become a full-time blogger, just like I discuss in this eBook.
Blogging is simple but uncomfortable. Creating and connecting feels uncomfortable when your fear pulls you toward busy work. Ego is like that. The mind is like that. It makes a mountain out of a molehill by pulling you away from core, business building blogging activities towards stuff that waste your time. I have never looked at a heat map in my blogging life yet I’ve circled the globe for the past eight years as a professional blogger. Feel free to spend a few moments checking out heat maps but when moments become hours, you’re messing up. You’re too engaged in blogging busy work. Help people freely and generously. Trust in the process. Open multiple streams of income. Promote your core opportunity the most, like me promoting my 124 ebooks. Success will find you.
Do You Reject or Accept Opportunities for Growth?
I just wrote and self published this ebook in a little over 24 hours:
not bad, eh? I asked my readers for ebook ideas. I received answers. I wrote the ebook. I really hustled on this one. I’ve already generated a quick sale. How? I accept opportunities for growth immediately. Do you feel the same way? Or do you reject opportunities for blogging growth? Be honest with yourself. This is not a comfortable process for bloggers to follow because your ego may sting a little bit.
Blogging struggle is borne of rejecting opportunities for growth. Blogging success is born of accepting opportunities for blogging growth immediately. I opened another income stream within 24 hours based on seizing an opportunity immediately. No hesitating. No hemming and hawing. No delaying. Other than sleeping for a handful of hours I did nothing else other than write the ebook, proofread the ebook, add photos and publish the sucker during that 24-hour stretch. Oh yeah. I also did some networking and content creating and yes, I promoted a handful of my 123 books. But I wrote ebook number 124 during that time frame too. Why? I love blogging. I love freedom. I love seizing opportunities for blogging growth.
Emerson said all life is an experiment and the more experiments you make the better. This wise man knew the secret to success. Seize the moment and squeeze all you can out of the moment by accepting opportunities for blogging growth fast. If a reader nudges you to write an ebook, write the darn ebook. Do not delay. Unless you despise writing, and you probably don’t because you blog, write the ebook, help the reader and make money. If one reader has that issue than 50 million readers have that issue. We are all human beings with pretty similar problems when you break everything down.
How quickly do you reject opportunities for growth because you fear something or someone? My most lucrative freelance writing client basically had to beg me to work for him. I so deeply feared I would not be worth the money he was paying me and I also feared his criticism, even though he was such a nice, warm, genuine dude. After he would not accept me saying no, I accepted the job and made a pretty penny over the course of our relationship. I learned my lesson. Now I gobble up opportunities for growth so quickly it’ll make your head spin.
I could go to bed right now to take a quick nap. I just worked for the long stretch to write the e-book and release it. But I gobble up this opportunity to write a guest post. Again guys, I accept opportunities for growth and grow like a stinking blogging weed.
Do not ignore opportunities because you fear seizing blogging opportunities because ignorance leads to struggle, failure and quitting. Seize the moment. Seize opportunities for blogging growth. Write the guest post. Broadcast live on Facebook. Upload a video to Twitter. Write the ebook. Convert it to audiobook. Create a course. How do you think I retired to a life of island hopping? I did not sit on the sidelines folks, waiting and waiting and waiting for opportunities. I seized opportunities for growth quickly and more opportunities flowed my way. Opportunities seized, multiply fast. Opportunities rejected disappear immediately.
Seize the blogging moment!
No Blogger Can Force Clients Customers or Readers to Learn and Succeed
Sometimes you just need to get right to the point with blog post titles. This is one such title and blog post. After answering questions for readers recently I made a realization. Honestly, I’ve had this realization in mind for many years. I guess I never chose to write about it. But today I will cover the topic. You cannot force a reader, client or customer to learn and succeed. This is just not possible. You cannot will someone to see what they are not prepared to see or do what they are not prepared to do.
Sometimes, coaches struggle horribly because they base their success or failure on the success or failure of clients. This is lunacy. You can show a horse the way but you cannot force the horse to drink, right? Ditto for human beings. You can coach someone but you cannot force them to do what you advised them to do. That is 100% in their hands. In truth, the best blogging coaches, ebook writers and consultants are at peace with doing their best job and leaving it at that.
I regularly answer questions for free, offering experience, helpful advice for new or struggling bloggers. Said newer struggling bloggers return within a few seconds with more questions, trying to find a different way to succeed, trying to find the quick shortcuts that lead to guaranteed failure. I release these people. Although I have compassion for fear-filled new and struggling bloggers, it is not my job to convince them of my 30000 hours of blogging experience. Either they’re smart and listen, humbling themselves and their ego. Or they make the foolish decision of trusting their fears over my 30000 hours of blogging experience. Either way, I have nothing to do with their outcomes. They choose to listen or to ignore me. I’m cool with that.
Be clear with the fact that most humans live predominately from fear so until they change their programming through a personal decision they will ignore good advice and follow bad advice. Self-fulfilling prophecy. In the same regard, you can trigger emotions in someone that allows them to follow your successful advice. Someone may open up and learn from you if it’s their time to open up. Totally their personal decision that has nothing to do with you. This is why I never get full of myself. I understand everybody’s life is their choice. I can show the way. You choose to follow or ignore. Nothing to do with me.
Stop wasting your energy trying to convince, manipulate or flat-out force clients and customers to do what you advise them to do. Offer your advice. Detach. Some folks will follow your advice and succeed with their blogs. Other folks will ignore your advice and continue to fail. You did what you could but now it’s up to them to use your knowledge and experience for their benefit. Keep helping people. Keep meeting new people. Don’t get attached to clients or customers. Offer tips and leave it at that. Every human being is fully accountable for themselves. You are a blogger, not a babysitter. You inspire but you’re not a savior. You can try but you can’t force people to do anything. Be at peace with this truth and you will become more successful than you ever dreamed. Most bloggers never succeed wildly because they never scale, being heavily attached to a few clients or customers. Highly successful, happy, free bloggers keep meeting and helping new people and allowing those people to find their own way. I am responsible for no one but myself. This is how I’ve lived the life of my dreams.
Do you want to live a movie-worthy life of travel like me?
Buy my eBook:
PS…the featured image is me in New Zealand and the hut above is where me and my wife lived deep in the jungles of Costa Rica.
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