I've got a good one in store for you today. Steve Razinski, Internet Marketing expert from IveTriedThat (and the person who introduced me to Internet Marketing) has taken some time out to give an interview that will give you a lot of insight into online business.
For those who don't know, IveTriedThat.com reviews online scams and legitimate products, giving you the lowdown and stopping you from getting bitten by the scams yourself. The site motto is “We lose money, so you don't have to”, and they've saved thousands of dollars from being misspent over the years.
He's been doing this for many years now, and most of what he does brings him great success. If you want an example of what can be achieved if you plan for long term success rather than adopt the “get rich quick” mentality, look no further. Over to Steve!
1.) You’ve been doing Internet Marketing for a long time, how did you get started? Back when you were learning the ropes, was there much training about?
I started my first website in 2005. It was a site about online poker where I taught some basics and followed the big online tournaments and posted updates and results. There wasn’t much in terms of training back then and I was just making things up as I went along. I’ve Tried That specifically was started in 2007. At the time, data entry scams were running out of control and I wanted a review site that helped people get honest looks at the claims that were being made. We started reviewing legitimate products as well and my Internet Marketing knowledge began expanding considerably.
2.) These days it seems everything you do “works”, and you’re never affected by Google updates or other changes in the Internet world. What helps you make your decisions and form a strategy?
My “strategy” is and always will be: put the reader first and write articles that I myself would want to read. I create content that helps the reader. I want them to walk away from my site with a positive user experience. It doesn’t matter what Google thinks of my site if my readers aren’t happy.
3.) What’s the hardest part about what you do?
The hardest part is getting out of bed in the morning. No one is forcing me to get out bed and go to work. I usually spend a little more time than I’d like in bed reading on my Kindle or browsing the web on my phone each morning. Staying motivated during the winter months is even more challenging, especially when you have a heated blanket.
4.) What’s the easiest part?
Living the life I’ve wanted. No slaving away 40-50 hours in a cubicle to make someone else rich while a barely competent mid-level manager breathes down my neck and whispers in my ear that I need to work overtime and on weekends to be a “team player.” I get to do what I want, when I want. I’m in control of my life and it’s fantastic.
5.) You review scams on a daily basis. What are usually the first couple of warning signs for an Internet scam?
I can usually tell a scam within the headline of the page or by the first 5 seconds of a sales video. The biggest tell-tale sign is that the scammer will focus on WHAT you'll earn instead of HOW you'll earn. These are called “blind offers” and scammers will sell you on money, luxury, and lifestyle changes and will never, ever mention exactly what you'll be doing.
6.) What are your thoughts on guest posting, article directories, and social marketing?
Guest posting is OK on occasion. This is going to sound backwards, but the key with guest blogging isn’t to promote your website. It’s to build your reputation and relationship with the community. Getting some traffic to your website is a bonus, not the goal.
Article directories can pretty much be avoided at all costs. I wouldn’t waste my time on them unless you have no reputation online and you’re building your very first website.
I don’t pay too much attention to social marketing. It’s supposed to be organic. I’m not going to try and force my content to be shared. The reader should want to pass the information along.
7.) There is SO MUCH for beginners to learn, they often go about it in the wrong order and get overwhelmed. What are the 3 fundamental things people should understand first?
1. You’re building a business from the ground up. You can’t expect to learn everything on Day 1 and start making money on Day 2.
2. Don’t chase the money. If you start a website on a topic that doesn’t hold your interest, it will be torturous to work on and you’ll give up long before you even attract your first visitor. Pick a topic that you care about, not one that you think will make you rich.
3. There really are no shortcuts or secrets to making money online. There are no gimmicks. There are no tricks. Your job is to connect people with the information they’re searching for online. That’s it. Be prepared to create.
8.) What’s the most satisfying commission you’ve ever earned? This could be a large check you received, a product you sold, or something else that felt amazing.
PayPal has a sending limit of $10,000 per transaction. The most satisfying commission I’ve earned was when one of my payments had to be broken up into instalments.
9.) IveTriedThat seems to be changing its direction slightly and teaching more general IM related things as well as scam reviews. Is ITT going to become more of a resource for Internet Marketers than a scam review site in the future? (This question is basically your chance to promote ITT).
We’re definitely broadening our horizons a little bit. While the covering of scams will always be our main focus, we’re branching out to new markets and covering new topics to provide even more value to our returning visitors. There’s only so many ways we can write “This program is a scam!” and still have people coming back for more. You can expect us to cover new ways of making money online or improving the income you already have.
10.) Where do you see Internet Marketing heading in the future?
Who knows. I’ve been using the term UEO a lot more. It stands for User Experience Optimization. SEO has been dead to me for years now. Focusing on the Users experience while on your website should be paramount. I think Google will be putting more of a focus on author rank as a whole. If they know you’re a good contributor to one site, the love you get from them there will carry over to any other project you’re working on. I also suspect we’ll see some serious challengers to the WordPress platform in the next coming years. Click and edit style systems will be popping up more and more. Everything is moving towards simple. UEO baby. It’s catching on.
A Special Thanks To Steve
On a personal level, Steve and IveTriedThat is the reason I am on the path that I'm on.
I first got introduced to making money online through Steve and his introduction to Wealthy Affiliate, and ever since then, he's personally helped me with my own ventures, even agreeing to do this interview for me.
Without him, this site wouldn't exist, and I'd be stuck in a full-time job that I hate, so cheers Steve!