I have a goal to get out of the rat race by August 31st. During the past week I have had so many setbacks that I didn’t just question my ability to reach my goal but instead I wanted to quit completely on my dream. What do you do when everything, I mean everything, goes south?
Don’t put all of your eggs into one basket
This past week I lost the cornerstone of my goal of earning $250/day online. I have relied heavily on a single affiliate program that I have been promoting for over a year. It has reached the point where this one affiliate program was on the verge of earning almost $100/day. For those without a calculator this one affiliate program was going to account for 40% of my goal of $250/day.
In the past week this affiliate program pretty much went south. The President of the company was sentenced to more than 3 years in jail for stealing money from banks. Someone that had been following the trail and sentence of this person and others that worked at the company reported that the company had closed their office.
Just 72 days away from my goal of quitting my day job and I was suddenly hit with the realization that I had lost 40% of my daily online income. I worry that I will not get my commission check at the end of this month. Yet the bad news just kept coming.
Being kicked when you are down
Another one of my affiliate programs that complimented the above program recently changed the design of their website. Usually this would not impact any affiliates but it did. It seems the company not only changed their website but decided to eliminate their affiliate program without telling any of their affiliates. All of my affiliate links no longer worked.
I immediately reached out to the company and sent an email asking how to login to their affiliate program on their new website. I got an email response a few days later and was told to sign up for a new account.
I created a new account using the same userid and password that I had used previously. Once logged into my account I could find nothing about how to get new affiliate links. I sent another email to the company. Another email response was to create a new account. I responded and said that I wanted to sign up for their new affiliate program and not for a new account.
Another email response said to call during business hours and they would set me up. I called the next day and left a message. With no return call after four days, I called again as well as sent another email saying that nobody had returned my call. About 15 minutes later I got a call from the company.
I explained that I wanted to sign up for their affiliate program since they changed their website design by affiliate links no longer worked. Needless to say the guy was a complete and utter asshole. He never apologized for eliminating their affiliate program without notifying me and they were not going to offer it again. Did I say the guy was an asshole?
I started looking at my stats of keywords that people use to reach my website. There were 7 different keywords for this product that I was ranked no worse than #3 in Google for any of the 7 keywords. I was looking forward to growing this affiliate program like I had with the above program and get it to where it was generating at least $50/day in commissions. Now this would never happen.
It just gets worse
I am very close to my mother and sisters. I share with them my goal of quitting the rat race. They are not technical and really do not understand exactly what I am trying to accomplish. As a result I don’t get a whole lot of support from them in building my online business. They do offer encouragement but not support that I can ask for guidance or direction.
The one place that I depend on for support is my coach. Granted he may not be technical like my family but he excels at giving me invaluable advice like strategy, how to react to situations, what skills I need to improve and what I should or should not be doing.
The problem is that he manages Tony Robbins’ 5 star resort Namale in Fiji. For the past 10 days and for the upcoming 7 days, Tony Robbins was teaching two advanced seminars at Namale. Just like any job when the CEO is in town then everyone bends over backward to make sure everything is perfect.
Because of the stress of managing a resort and dealing with Tony Robbins and power leaders in industry that were attending the two seminars, the role of coach fell to the side of the road. With my goal of escaping the rat race literally crumbling in front of my eyes, I was left with no option of support.
I got a short email from him yesterday saying that he was busy with work in Fiji and he would not be able to communicate with me until June 26th at the earliest. All of the sudden I found myself alone while my dream was failing.
This all happened over the past two days when I was out of work on sick leave. I started having serious health problems Monday afternoon late where I ended up leaving work 30 minutes early. On Tuesday I went to the doctor who sent me to another specialist. She called and got me in to see the specialist that afternoon. Wednesday morning I waited by my phone for the doctors to call with test results.
Luckily the results did not show that I had cancer or some other serious illness. It seems with some medication that I take for the next week should resolve the problem.
In just a 48 hour period I had gone through strike one, strike two and strike three. They say that bad things happen in three and I believe they are right. My life could not get any worse.
Plan B Plan C
Plans are good and necessary but they should not be written in stone. You need to be open and welcoming of unforeseen events because sometimes these unplanned moments are often the seeds of spectacular opportunity in your life. The unexpected is what makes life interesting. I clearly had a major dose of the unexpected.
The first step I took toward recovery was to deal with the asshole. Even if the company did offer a new affiliate program, I would not have supported the company because of the attitude of the guy who called me.
I went and updated every article that I had written about this product. I added a new paragraph at the start of each article in big, bold, red letters stating that I no longer recommended this product. I then put in images of products that I would recommend as a replacement. I fell back on my experience as an Amazon affiliate and recommended products on Amazon.
Then I updated my meta description which is what is shown in the search engine rankings when you search for a specific keyword. This is limited to 160 words. I changed it to say that I no longer recommended the product and would share why in my article. Anyone that searches for the 7 keywords would find my meta description quite interesting and will drive them to my website. From there I will be selling them an alternative product. So I am still able to monetize the affiliate program that no longer exists.
Killing your goose with the golden egg
There is a children’s story about killing the goose who laid the golden eggs. You don’t get what you were expecting. I realize that the guys running the company that was generating 40% of my income were pretty savory. This was a reflection of them on how they chose to conduct business. I get to choose whether or not I want to do business with them. I decided to kill the goose with the golden eggs.
I picked a competing product and signed up for their affiliate program. This company had reached out to me a month ago and asked me to be an affiliate for them. They had even sent me free samples of their products. Last night I opened up their products and tasted them for the first time.
I started the process of updating the over 100 articles that I have published on my original affiliate program. I did the same process and updated the start of the article. I provided more details about the President of the company being sent to prison, the closing of their office and the outstanding lawsuits and prosecution of other members of the management team. Then I provide links to the new product that I am recommending.
I also updated the keywords in the articles and the tags to reflect the new product. I am going to initially rely on traffic coming in from the existing keywords for the old affiliate program to get these articles ranked for the new keywords.
I hired my writer on eLance to write me 10 new articles on the new affiliate program. I will be linking to these new articles from the over 100 existing articles on my website. The search volume for this product is much less so I am hoping to quickly rank for it.
Granted I may not be earning $100/day for this product by August 31st but I will be working my butt off to make sure I am generating a good commission from the program. If I have to find another affiliate program and get it ranked to supplement this program then I will do it. I will do whatever it takes to make sure I am able to reach my goal. The only question is whether or not I will make my August 31st deadline now or not.
I have registered my website for Pat Flynn’s Niche Site Duel 2.0 contest. In my previous post I said I as working on the “hvac training” keyword. I was actually able to hire the VA that designed Pat Flynn’s security guard training website for the initial Niche Site Duel. This morning I got an email from him with a mockup of the custom WordPress theme that he is designing for me for my niche website. It looks fabulous.
My current writer does not understand the technical nuisances of hvac so he cannot write for me. This evening I am going to be hiring a new writer on eLance to write about hvac training. I have created 50 article topics that the writer I hire will write.
The best thing I can do is to not sulk about the challenges I have experienced this week. I am taking action toward my Plan B and still moving forward toward my goal.