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2 Years, 100,000 Views and Five Figures in Income

Late 2012, I started a blogging challenge to demonstrate the power of blogging to attract clients.

My goal then was simple: Start a blog, optimize it to attract clients and start generating four figures in freelance income through the blog within 3 months.

This was a public challenge, and many of my readers were concerned that using my name will skew the results in my favor, due to the connections and influence I had online when I started; potential clients researching me will also see my reputation, giving me significant advantage over someone who is just starting.

To this end, I decided to use a pseudonym; I used “Joseph Oni”; Oni is a short form of “Onibalusi” and “Joseph” is my middle name. So, I’m still technically the same person but nobody knows “me” as Joseph Oni except those following the challenge.

To further ensure results aren’t skewed by my readers – since I mentioned the blog URL publicly when I started the challenge, though I didn’t link to it – I waited for a month before I started working on the blog. That resulted in a little over 300 visits from readers of this blog and zero clients; they were mostly visiting to see what I’m doing with the blog.

Positive that I have a fresh start and that results won’t be skewed in any way, I proceeded with work on the blog in the second month, and I got my first client shortly after. This client spent over $10,000 with me in the 1 year+ I worked with him.

Two days after getting my first client from the challenge blog, I got my second client.

I documented this exactly as it happened on this blog’s public challenge page, as well as the exact steps I took. You can find all the articles in the series here.

Needless to say, that challenge was a MASSIVE success; I reached my goal in 2 months, and the blog has grown significantly since it was started.

Here’s a screenshot of traffic to the challenge blog in its first year:

One Year GBT Traffic Graph

To date, I have spent less than 100 hours total on the challenge blog since it was started, and it has been responsible for five figures in freelancing income; it has also received over 100,000 visitors since it’s inception.

Now, to be totally transparent, at a point last year, I had Writers in Charge team member Karol Krol contribute weekly articles to the blog and that cost me a few thousands of dollars; I did this after the blog had been really profitable, so it’s more of me choosing to spend money on the blog so it isn’t completely dormant while I spend my time on other things.

Where Things Stand in 2015

That said, it is 2015 and a lot of things have changed, and I want to take the challenge blog to a new level.

I believe I have proved my point with the pseudonym thing; that it is possible to build a blog that successfully sends you clients even if you are a total nobody online.

I have decided to take the blog to the next level this year, and here are some decisions I had to make:

I scrapped the pseudonym and revealed my real identity on the blog; you will recall I said I have spent less than 100 hours total on the blog total in 2 and a half years? That’s ridiculously low for any blog.

The reason behind this is simple; I’m not personally motivated to run a blog that does not have my identity attached to it.

Initially, I was motivated to give in my best to ensure the challenge doesn’t fail; once I achieved success, I basically stopped working on it. So much so that I didn’t update it for a whole year at a point; yet it got over 57,000 page views within this period and made me five figures in freelance income due to the foundational work I had already done.

I turned it to a business blog; people who keenly followed the challenge then will remember the blog as guestbloggingtactics.com.

Try to visit that address today and it will take you to effectivebusinessideas.com.

I had to rebrand the blog to encapsulate my passion for both online and offline business.

Over the years, I have developed much of an interest in business beyond having a blog and freelancing; I started a fish farm, I did some real estate investment, I’m hoping to invest in poultry farming in the near future, and I am moving with a lot of successful business people.

I wanted to start a fish farming blog, and maybe a real estate investment blog, and maybe a poultry farming blog later, etc. sharing my journey with these business endeavors and lessons I’m learning along the way.

Facing the truth, though, I’m the “blogging expert” and it would be foolish to make the same mistake I constantly advice others again; why start 3 more blogs when I can barely maintain the 2 I already own?

That was when I got the idea, why not rebrand Guest Blogging Tactics to Effective Business Ideas? That was what I did.

My Advice to You

You’re probably curious about my strategy for the blog with this rebrand, and I’ll be sharing it with you below.

However, my approach with Effective Business Ideas is totally different from my approach with Writers in Charge. Unlike with Writers in Charge, I will be actively soliciting clients through Effective Business Ideas; in my articles, in the newsletter, everywhere.

My goal is to ensure that Effective Business Ideas results in six figures in annual freelance revenue. I’m sure it will be achieved pretty soon, considering my strategy and full time involvement in it.

That said, I’d only give you one advice if you are one blogging, or aspiring to blog, for clients:

Pay careful attention to what I do with Effective Business Ideas (EBI); analyze my approach, my content and everything I do on that site. This time around, don’t just pay attention to what I say. Pay SPECIAL attention to what I do.

Most importantly, if you see me doing anything on the site that confuses you, do not hesitate to ask me; while I detail my approach to blogging for clients in Stop Pitching Clients – and I won’t only encourage you to get it if you are blogging for clients, but I actually believe you are doing yourself a disservice if you don’t – I have nothing to hide with EBI.

I want everything I do over there to be as transparent and as bright as the sun; take a look at that blog to see what I do, and if anything confuses you that you are considering implementing on your own blog, ask right away!

My Strategy For Maximum Success With Effective Business Ideas

My strategy hasn’t really changed over the years. Instead, it has intensified; here’s how I will be handling that blog going forward!

1. 3 Articles a Week: If there’s one thing I emphasize when advising my coaching students, or customers of my Stop Pitching Clients program, when it comes to blogging strategy, it is the importance of a content schedule.

I can’t emphasize this enough, especially when your blog is new.

Once your blog is established, you can play around with your content schedule; not that there won’t be consequences, but you will be on the safe side. It’s dangerous to do this with a new blog, though.

So, yes, some of my articles will probably only get a few views, while some will get hundreds or even thousands of views. I’ll still write it; at the very least, you can expect 2 articles weekly on the EBI blog from me consistently.

That said, I won’t be a perfectionist with the EBI blog.

We’re often our own worst enemies, and in the process of trying to get things right we eventually fail to take action; I’ve come to realize over the years, there’s no perfect article. Looking for the “perfect article” is often just an excuse to stall.

I’ll write, and I’ll publish.

I’ll give my best, but my articles won’t necessarily be perfect.

With 5 years of blogging experience under my belt, especially building blogs that generate clients, I’ve come to realize that consistency with blogging effort is much more effective and profitable than focusing on the occasional big hit, or on having the perfect article that only goes live once in a while.

2. More Aggressive Guest Blogging: To be honest, it’s been really long since I actively guest blogged; the last time I “really” guest blogged was around the time of the blogging challenge.

Sometimes in 2013, I was writing daily articles aimed to be submitted as guest posts to several blogs, I even got approval from some big blogs, but those articles remain in my draft folder till date; I have 18 of those guest posts written.

Those guest posts will give me an head start, and I have 10 additional guest posts I wrote in March yet to be submitted as well, making it a total of 28 guest posts.

That’s a huge head start, but still a drop in the bucket!

When I say aggressive guest blogging, I mean “aggressive” – on a high profile level. It’s my intention to have content written and scheduled for the blog for 2 – 3 months; have 1 – 2 months of content scheduled over here at Writers in Charge, and switch into “guest blogger” mode for the next few months to really establish Effective Business Ideas.

I’m estimating writing at least 60 – 80 guest posts total in the next 3 months; if just 50 of these guest posts are published, and I’m more than confident they will be, it will be a success.

3. Focus More on Email List Building: If you’ve heard the phrase “the money is in the list”, it is true.

Like I said earlier, the EBI blog currently has around 500 subscribers; this came from lackluster efforts to attract subscribers through an ugly form below articles in the past few years. There was no sign up incentive, and no active effort to attract subscribers.

I’ll be fixing this, though, for two reasons:

Reason #1:

GBT Email #1

This particular deal did not go through eventually because the potential client no longer replied after a few back and forth communication; I was still running the blog under a pseudonym then, and I demanded at least part payment upfront, and she didn’t remember how she got on my list (she opted in through my site).

Any of the 3 factors I mentioned could be responsible, or maybe life got in the way.

Reason #2:

GBT Email #2

I’m currently talking with this client and he wants me to work on content strategy and possibly creating resource articles for him.

At the time of publishing this article, I’m finalizing a starter package with him and I can see the potential of having him as a recurring client for blogging consulting, and possibly some large scale content creation work. This is at least five figures on the long run.

The above two screenshots show responses I got after sending an email to the small email list I built through Effective Business Ideas and including a short “PS” below the emails telling people to reach out to me for their content needs. I’ve done this twice now, and I’ve gotten a response both times.

Research has shown that email is the best converting source of traffic online, and conversions from a well-managed email list is more than that from search and social media traffic combined.

The first time I launched something on this blog, it was a special birthday coaching offer to my list in 2012 that was only available for 4 days; I made over $3,000 from that launch. That’s how powerful an email list is.

I noticed we often advocate email list for promoting products, ebooks, courses and occasionally coaching services but very few people advocate it for getting clients. This is something I’ll leverage a lot for the EBI blog starting with the rebrand.

That said, I’ll be revealing my strategies for growing my email list and converting subscribers to clients in future articles but, for the time being, this article on how I got extra 1,200 subscribers on THIS blog in 2 months is a goldmine. I’ll be following this direction to grow my email list at Effective Business Ideas.

A Summary of My Strategy for Effective Business Ideas Going Forward

  • I will develop more content on a consistent basis and stick to a content schedule of publishing 3 articles a week.
  • I will focus on guest blogging more aggressively; I’m aiming for at least 60 guest posts total in the next 3 months.
  • I will focus more on my email list; I’ll build it in a smart way, and I’ll experiment with different ways to get subscribers to convert to clients.

That said, my goal is to turn the EBI blog into a six figure freelance business; I want to get at least six figure worth of deals from it before the end of this year, and I’m positive my strategy will put me on track towards achieving this goal.

A SMALL Pitch for Stop Pitching Clients

If you want to learn how to build a blog that serves as a sustainable source of clients to your freelance business, you need to check out Stop Pitching Clients: How to Get High Quality Freelance Writing Clients by Blogging.

Now, I’ll be upfront; this is not a quick way to get clients. The fastest it took me to get results using this approach was 1 month and 10 days, and a star student of mine, Anca Dumitru, did the same thing in a little over 1 month. I’ve had several other similar success stories.

If you want to build a successful freelance writing business, and you feel a blog can be the catalyst for your business growth, you need to get this program.

In case I’m not clear enough, you will be doing yourself a disservice not to get it; that’s how much I’m convinced about the effectiveness of Stop Pitching Clients.

There are two packages at the moment, and I’m considering removing that Lite package soon, and might be raising the price of the Premium package. So, if you are remotely considering this, take action today!

Head over to Stoppitchingclients.com now!

Onibalusi

Welcome! I'm Bamidele Onibalusi, a young writer and blogger. I believe writers are unique and highly talented individuals that should be given the respect they deserve. This blog offers practical advice to help you become truly in charge of your writing career.

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