The History of My First Online Business

Railroad TracksI’ve told the story about how I started my first online business hundreds of times before – in conversation, in interviews and more recently, live on stage – but today I plan on getting into more detail than I ever have before.

Why?

Because the brevity of those conversations often blur the truth about how much time and effort was actually put into my business before I ever made a single penny.

My first monthly income report from October of 2008 reports $7,906.55 in earnings, however this was definitely not the first month my business was running – this was the first month I had monetized it with my own producta year and a half after I started.

Let’s start from the beginning so we can see what really happened.

February 2007

I was working as a senior drafter in a Bay Area architecture firm – loving what I was doing and looking for ways to expand my resume, possibly get promoted and earn a raise.

At this time, I was earning about $38,000/year.

I really wanted to get my architecture license but the process, which is supposed to take 3 years, typically takes people 6-8 years to complete – sometimes longer.

Although working towards my license is something my boss would have taken notice to, the path to licensure is one that most of my peers would eventually follow too, so I wanted something else under my belt, something different (and faster) that would help me stand out.

That’s when I was introduced to LEED – Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design – a program introduced in 2005 by the US Green Building Council to systemize sustainable design and create incentive to build environmentally friendly buildings.

There’s an exam people can take to become a LEED Accredited Professional which allows one to manage projects under the LEED rating system, and because everything else was “going green” at this time, I figured it would be smart of me to “go green” as well and work towards my accreditation.

The office only had a few LEED APs (none in my department) and after asking them about the exam, I eventually found out that there was a ton of material to learn and the exam was very difficult to pass (with a 30-35% passing rate). Plus, there wasn’t nearly as many as classes or resources to help people pass the exam as there were for the architecture licensing exam, so a lot of the studying had to be self-driven.

I was up to the challenge, so I purchased the study material and went for it.

April 2007

And a challenge it was.

Studying for an exam after graduating college is not easy – especially when you’re in your mid-twenties and your friends are more excited about going out than focusing on their careers – or at least mine were.

I wasn’t making any progress, was studying at most just a few hours a week, and none of it was sticking.

I put the exam on hold, primarily because I was soon moving south (Irvine, CA) to join a team in our sister office for a project that needed more support.

It worked out though because I would be closer to my hometown of San Diego, live just minutes away from my girlfriend (now wife), and have a lot less distractions to pull me away from focusing on my career.

After getting settled in Irvine in June, I was ready to get back to studying.

June 2007

I quickly realized that even in the new environment, the way I was studying just wasn’t working out and I had absolutely no motivation.

Taking information from a 400+ page reference guide, jotting notes onto a legal pad and creating flash cards just wasn’t doing it for me.

That’s when I had the idea to start a blog to help me keep track of my notes and to hold me accountable.

Why a blog?

Because of the basic nature of the setup: creating categories, tagging important keywords, cross-linking between certain parts that were related to each other to understand relationships and linking out to external pages that were mentioned in the reference guide (and being able to easily navigate through all of that on any computer – at work, at home or while on travel) it just all made sense to create this framework about the exam on a website to help me wrap my brain around everything, without ever having to carry reams of paper. It sort of went along with the whole “green” thing too (which, fun fact, I used as a selling point when I launched my eBook, since eBooks weren’t as popular back then).

How did I know about blogging?

I started a Xanga blog in college at UC Berkeley to share random things that happened in my life, mainly just to keep friends and family up to date back home. That’s how I was familiar with the platform, beyond just reading a few blogs here and there while at work (on my lunch break, of course).

And no – you won’t be able to find it…I deleted it a long time ago. ;)

So, I setup a WordPress blog and one of the first things I did, even before writing any content on the site, was register for the exam.

Boom.

March 3, 2008 was my test date.

I put that in the sidebar of my side so that I could see it every time I opened it.

August 2007 to March 2008

The first couple months of studying, on paper, seemed to go very well. I was religiously dedicating 2+ hours a night to the exam.

But, when you look at what I was really doing, it was:

  • 20% Actual studying
  • 80% Learning all about how to use WordPress

I was definitely enjoying the WordPress part a lot more than I was enjoying the studying, but I often gave myself the excuse that working on the site and making it look nice was a form of studying.

I even started to design things for the site on my own with Photoshop – like logos and fancy backgrounds – even though this was just a site for myself and any co-workers who might find the information useful too. It was fun, but I also thought that the site could become something cool to share with my boss to show how much extra work I was putting into my career, so I wanted it to look profesh.

The reality check came when a couple of co-workers and I took a practice test and I failed miserably. I don’t remember the exact percentage, but let’s just say I have more fingers and toes.

That’s when I started to get serious about the exam and serious about using the site I had just spent the last 2 months setting up, which hardly had any content on it.

For the next 6 months, for 4 hours a day (on average) I studied for the exam, which included adding content to the website – not just dolling it up. Making it look nice wasn’t going to get me to pass the exam.

During work (lunch hours only, of course ;)), at home and while on travel – I was studying. I was reading what I needed to know and consolidating that information and posting it online so I could easily come back to it later and remember everything to pass. I created tables and charts to organize things that I couldn’t understand otherwise (taking the occasional 3 or 4 hour stretch to figure out things like how to add a table to WordPress), I created acronyms to help myself remember things and posted that on the site too, I took pictures and added those and created my own sample questions based off the reference guide, and when it got to a point where there was nothing else to add (because there’s only a finite amount of information to talk about with this exam) I had everything I needed to pass the exam.

I would often participate in long discussions in forums related to the exam and help people on other blogs I found who were studying for the exam too. A lot of times I’d insert links back to different parts of my site that were relevant to the discussions, but I thought nothing of it. It wasn’t driven by search engine optimization or trying to rank higher in Google. I didn’t even know how all of that worked – and I didn’t care – I was just trying to help out and I found that the more I helped out, the more I felt like I knew the material.

When I took the exam on March 3, 2008, I passed with flying colors and became a LEED Accredited Professional.

After that, I was almost immediately promoted to Job Captain, and my pay increased to $60,000/year.

And on March 31st, I proposed to my girlfriend – and we were engaged.

Life was good and was going according to plan.

May 2008

Of course, things don’t always go according to plan.

With the slowing U.S. economy and many companies starting to focus on survival instead of expansion, the architecture industry took a huge hit.

If there are no buildings going up, nobody needs an architect to design them.

Even world famous architecture firms like Frank Gehry’s were laying off people by the truck load, so for a lesser-known company like ours – the outlook wasn’t good.

By the end of May our staff was cut in half, reduced hours were enforced, and we were often called in the early morning hours and told to stay home for the day.

I was “lucky” enough to still be on payroll but it just felt like a really sick reality TV show, where people were getting voted off the island and you always wondered if you were next.

Eventually, my time came and I was invited into my bosses office.

He gave me probably the best review I have ever received from anyone about my work, but it was obvious where it was headed – I was getting laid off.

Luckily (sort of) I didn’t have to pack my things that day, or even that month – or even for a few months. I still had to finish up some specific jobs that I was working on, but my boss was courteous enough to give me the heads up that after those projects reached the next stopping point, I was gone. He actually encouraged me to go out and find another firm quickly, because he saw something in me, which I thought was nice, but at that point I wasn’t in the right mindset to do anything really, except think.

Mild panic attacks, scenarios playing in my head about how my fiancee would react or what our future was going to be like, and I even freaked out and started calling all of the local architecture firms to see if there were any positions open – even entry-level drafting positions I was willing to take.

Nothing was available, of course.

When I told my wife, she took it well. She has always believed in me and I owe her everything for that.

Besides her, the only bright spots after the bad news were the notification emails from the LEED exam forum threads that I was subscribed to, most of them directed to me and saying “thanks for the help”, or asking questions to me like I was the expert who knew the answers – and most of the time, I did know the answers, and that’s when the entrepreneurial Pat Flynn you all know today was born.

June 2008

My body was still going into the office a few times a week, but my mind was all about online business and learning all about how it worked and what I could possibly do to begin to earn an income online.

In my mind, I was already laid off.

I had a few months left on payroll, plus a small severance package and some emergency savings if I needed to use it – so I figured I had maybe 6-8 months to make this online business thing work – whether it would be something I did with my LEED blog or something else. If not, then I would send out resumes like mad or go back to school to get a Masters and go from there.

As far as I was concerned, I had no other options but to make it work.

I took a couple online courses and read a few books to streamline the learning process, and across the board I learned that the one thing that all successful online businesses had (and desired) was targeted web traffic.

I knew a had a few visitors since there were some comments here and there, and I figured a couple of people on the forums may have clicked through the links that I posted up when answering people’s questions, so when I set myself up with Google Analytics to keep track and know for sure, I was blown away. 

Once the data started to collect, I could see that hundreds (often thousands, depending on the day) of people were already visiting my site every single day.

They were coming from all over the world and finding me somewhat evenly through Google Search, referral traffic, and direct traffic.

Word about my website had apparently spread, and I had no idea.

Google Search

7% of the search traffic came from people searching for my domain name at the time, intheleed, which I later changed due to legal reasons (LEED was a trademark I shouldn’t have used in my domain – hence the domain now GreenExamAcademy.com.)

A majority of the search traffic was for long tail keywords related to the exam. I guess Google loved my content and put it at #1 for an unbelievable number of those terms. Again, I wasn’t trying, it just happened naturally due to the SEO-friendly nature of blogs and the fact that the content was exactly what people were looking for.

Referral Traffic

My site was being linked to from a number of other sites around the web. The #1 traffic generator was the forum I was participating in, but other than that there were a lot of little blogs here and there where people were documenting their architecture journey, and many of them were studying for the LEED exam too and shared my site as a resource with their followers.

What was really cool was that some of the USGBC chapters used my site as a resource as well and linked to me from their chapter websites, which drove a lot of traffic and (now I know this…) created some very powerful, highly authoritative backlinks for me.

Direct Traffic

Direct traffic are things like people typing in the domain directly in a web browser, or visitors coming from bookmarks, desktop shortcuts and links in emails.

Since a third of my traffic was coming in directly through these avenues – it was a good sign I had started a powerful, authoritative brand.

The mind blowing statistic, across the board, is that an overwhelming number of visitors were spending hours on my site – obviously on the site to study, and this scared me a little at first.

What if my notes weren’t good enough? What if I’m forgetting something?

I knew the content was good through, and exactly what I needed to pass, so I internally began to become confident in what I had created and was determined to monetize this site somehow.

Adsense

Naturally, the first thing I did was put Google Adsense on the site, because I heard it was relatively simple to setup.

I didn’t know exactly how it all worked or what I was doing, but I signed up, created one image ad and put it on my homepage.

Within an hour I saw the first dollar I had ever made online – 3 clicks which added up to $1.08 – and although I could find that kind of money between the cushions of my apartment couch – it was an amazing feeling and one I will never forget.

The first day I had earned just over $5.00, and then next it turned into $7.00, and when I added more ad units and learned more about the best places to put ads, the income grew to $15-30 per day, and more.

July of 2008 to September 2008

My Adsense income at this point was a great start, but definitely not enough to live off of, especially with a wedding coming up in February.

To save money, my fiancee and I both decided it would be best for us both to move back home to our parent’s houses in San Diego and then I would take the train up to Irvine to still get to the office every day and stay on payroll as long as possible.

Every little bit helped and we wanted to save as much as we could for our wedding, and so living in San Diego and taking the train was much cheaper than living in the expensive Irvine area and driving. Gas was nearly $5.00 per gallon at this point, which didn’t help either.

The train ride was a couple of hours to and from work daily (that’s 4 hours total every day in transit, 3 to 4 times a week), but it definitely was not a waste of time. It was the perfect time to educate myself with podcasts and think about where I wanted to go with my site.

I eventually learned that private advertising could be a good solution for my site since there were a lot of third party companies who offered practice exams for the LEED exam and/or live training who, I figured, wanted to get in front of targeted traffic like mine.

A couple phone calls and a deal later, I had my first advertiser on a 3-month contract for $50.00/month. More phone calls and a couple emails later, I eventually had four 125×125 pixel banner ads embedded in the sidebar of my site, earning a total of about $600 per month.

Now we were getting somewhere.

With my Adsense income and advertiser income, I was earning about $1,500.00 per month, which equates to $18,000/year. Still not where I would like to be, but not bad considering. It was like working for minimum wage – but the cool part is that I wasn’t working at all, it was all hands-free income.

The Mastermind Meeting that Changed Everything

After listening to the Internet Business Mastery Podcast every day on the train and becoming a part of their Academy, I was excited when Sterling, one of the hosts of the show, decided to move to San Diego. After chatting with him in the members forum, a number of us decided to meet, in person, and have a little mastermind meeting here in SD.

This mastermind group started to meet regularly, and for a while included Dan Andrews, which many of you may know from the Lifestyle Business Podcast – but it was that first meeting that changed everything.

When it was my turn to share my story, I told them about my crazy journey and the site I currently had up, and immediately Sterling turned to me and said:

“Pat, you have to write and sell an eBook on your site.”

The others agreed, but I didn’t even know really what that meant.

After some basic explanation, I was convinced to at least give it a shot.

I had nothing to lose, but an opportunity. 

So when I wasn’t sleeping or on the train (or sleeping on the train), I was in front of my computer writing a study guide for the LEED exam in Microsoft Word. 4 to 8 hours a day (on top of work and travel) were dedicated to making this guide amazing, organized, and beautiful. I slept more on the train than I did at home, but I was excited.

My goal was to create the guide that I wish I had when I was first studying for the exam back in early 2007.

By mid-September, my guide was complete. I turned it into a PDF, created a cover in Photoshop and boom. Product done.

Now the question was how to sell it.

Again, going back to the mastermind group, I learned about E-Junkie, a digital product delivery service which would automate the entire checkout and delivery process for me, so I set that up on a test page, ran a few transactions, and it seemed to be working – I was getting emails with a download link to the eBook after making a purchase.

(Later, I found out you can actually create coupons to test purchase your products for $0.00 with E-Junkie. I didn’t know that and bought my own eBook at least 4 times, full price, to make sure it was working correctly. LOL!)

October of 2008

After using the sample sales copy template from Yanik Silver’s Moonlighting on the Internet (affiliate link), I published my sales page at 2:00am on October 2nd and put a link to it in the header of my site and at the bottom of every single post.

I didn’t do any sort of launch or create any kind of buzz around it – I just simply released it, and then took the train to work a few hours later, which was ironically going to end, for reals, in just a couple of weeks.

When I got to work, the first thing I did was check to see if there were any sales.

There were ZERO, and that was pretty deflating.

All that work for nothing – it seemed, but it was only 8:00 in the morning so I had to be realistic and give it some more time.

Then, something amazing happened.

At 8:40am, I got an email from Paypal with the subject line “Notification of payment received”. My first sale!

I immediately signed into my Paypal account and sure enough, $19.99 (minus a small paypal fee) was in my account.

I could NOT believe it, and I literally had to go outside and walk around a little just to fathom exactly what had just happened.

When I got back to my desk 15 minutes later, I see another email from paypal: “Notification of payment received”.

Another sale! While I was outside! What?!

And throughout the rest of the day, I’d get emails from Paypal with the same subject line, and every time I’d sign in to Paypal to see if it was true.

That first day, I had sold 10 eBooks for a total of $199.90.

October 2, 2008 sales

My life changed ever since that point.

I had earned more that day online than I ever have in any day working my architecture job, and when October finished up and I was officially laid off and didn’t have to take the train anymore, I had sold 309 copies of my eBook, and combined with my Adsense income and pro-rated private advertiser payments, I had grossed a total of $7,906.55. 

You can read more of my later income reports here for what happened next.

This same month, on October 17th of 2008, I bought the domain SmartPassiveIncome.com (which was, fun fact – first called Passive Aggressive Income Dude – or P.A.I.D., for short) where I would give away all of the information I learned through experience about how I was succeeding online – with GreenExamAcademy.com and any other passive income projects I experimented with in the future, and I’m happy to say I am still enjoying what I do here on SPI and I don’t plan on stopping anytime soon.

So as you can see, a lot of time and effort was put into the site before ever seeing a penny, and when the pennies started to roll in, it took bigger and bolder actions, and even more time, struggle and hard work to take things to the next level.

Sure, I was scared a lot of the time, but one phrase sums it all up for me:

I had nothing to lose, but an opportunity. 

Thank you for sharing your time with me today, and I hope this inspires you to take (bold) actions and keep moving forward.

Cheers, and all the best to you!

Click here to read the follow-up post, If I Had to Start Over, This is What I’d Do Differently

  • http://www.monthlyincomereport.com Adam

    Great post, Pat, thanks for sharing. Lots of buzz flying around about the latest Google update — are you seeing it affect any of your sites positively or negatively? Or are you waiting for your April income report to share that sort of information?

  • http://www.viperchill.com Glen Allsopp

    Pretty cool that you’re still able to generate those stats from so long ago. I wish I had more copies / access to mine.

    Nice to finally see your story here bro :)

    • Pat

      Thanks Glen, and I hope all is well. I’m off to read your latest post about the future of blogging. :)

    • http://www.stefannilsson.com Stefan Nilsson

      Indeed. Would love to have the same since I love numbers.

      Makes me think about my journey. I’ve gone through a bunch of different nicknames, user accounts, domains, etc. during the years. What would the results have been if I simply continued with my first project.

  • Alex B

    Pat,

    Thanks so much for sharing! Awesome story, great inspiration!

    Cheers,
    Alex

    • Pat

      Thanks Alex, I appreciate it!

  • http://legitseo.com/ Alex

    Awesome post, it’s always interesting to see how people get started.

    • Pat

      Thanks Alex, and I agree – that’s why I love having people share their own success stories for everyone on my podcast. Cheers, and all the best!

  • http://www.devno.com Roman

    Wow great story pat. I said myself my work is done today, but now I have to do something. :)

    Thank you,
    Roman

    • Pat

      My pleasure, and thanks for taking the time to read it Roman!

  • http://twitter.com/richardpokorny Richard from Czech Republic

    Really inspiring article, you have made fantastic progress!

    btw. thank you for your video for propagacenainternetu.cz, your Czech language is flawless ;-)

    • Pat

      Haha, thanks Richard – I try :P

  • http://soloflightEd.com soloflightEd

    inspiring story Pat! thanks a lot for sharing this! I’m more motivated now to write more valuable content online!

  • http://truepassiveliving.com Riley

    Hey Pat, this is great to see! The evolution you’ve made for yourself is absurd. Is this how you expected things to end up? What would you have done differently?

  • http://www.dormroomcash.com Adam

    Pat, you have a great story and I am glad that you shared it with everybody. Thanks for that and hopefully in 5 years you can tell your story again and show how far you have come.

  • http://drunkonlife.net/yes-luck-plays-a-role-in-your-success/ Leo Dimilo

    It’s the journey that makes things more interesting, Pat. Appreciate letting peer into your life, retrospectively.

  • http://www.lostcyclist.me Quinton Hamp

    Dude! Inspiring story about a real guy building a real business.

    Too bad that so many of us have been blinded by seo and forum commenting as a means to an end… and not a tool to help others.

    I’m trying to reform.

  • http://www.squidoo.com/books-about-how-to-use-squidoo CCGAL (Janelle) @ Squidoo

    It is refreshing to hear a very realistic rendition of what many assume was an overnight success. I think it is telling that you first accrued a massive amount of useful information on a subject that was NOT internet marketing, and then monetized it.

    Thank you for sharing this; I believe it will help many people do the right things in the right order.

  • http://smartlifehacks.com Charlie

    Wow.. inspiring story pat..

  • http://bakerthbrand.com Baker

    Awesome Post. Your journey is helping many people see the light to earning smart passive income online!

  • http://conversioncues.com/loyal-audience-development Dewane Mutunga

    Pat,

    INSPIRATIONAL!!!!

    I was reading while walking through the crowded streets of Manhattan while weaving through people, you had me glued to my iPhone screen.

    After reading this it’s clear to see that taking risks, resilience, faith are at the core of your success. It’s probably at the core of every other successful person’s story too.

    It’s all about sweat equity. It’s the key to achieving everything.

    Congrats on all your success. This post is a testament to the fact that you have earned and deserve it all. *salute*

    Thanks for sharing your story!

  • http://www.innerspartan.com Scott

    Really great post! This is exactly what I needed to read. I have heard your story a few times and I know it takes time to get things going with an online business, but I can’t help but have times when it seems like I am doing all of this work and there are no results. This definitively inspired me to keep going because I am doing something I love and I know I want to make this work.

    Thanks Pat

  • http://www.androidpaycheck.com/ Vickram

    Nice re-collection of the hardest part(at that time) of your life.

    I got fired too on May 2009 and I took a long time(18 months) to figure out what to do with my life… Good that you embraced the opportunities that knocked on your door with your hard work.

    As Glen pointed out, it is pretty impressive that you can pull out stats from so long back.

    Nice read and inspiring (too).

    -Vickram.

  • http://www.newmediadesignstudios.com Rivka K

    Fantastic story – thanks so much for sharing! It is easy to give up when you are not seeing instant success, and the message to keep trying is so important!

  • willie robertson

    Hi Pat,

    Great story of how you got started in IM.

    To think you actually were using a blogging platform to help further you in your career/job.

    It’s amazing how things ultimately turned out for you.

    I appreciate you sharing how you were persistent, because so many times we are lead to believe that creating an online business, that will generate income, is all push button and walla overnight success.

    As your story relates, it takes work, real work.

    As you said, (So as you can see, a lot of time and effort was put into the site before ever seeing a penny, and when the pennies started to roll in, it took bigger and bolder actions, and even more time, struggle and hard work to take things to the next level.)

    It seems your early days of putting in the necessary time, begin to align you up with all the right people and things that has brought you to the success you are now experiencing.

    Thank you so very much for sharing your story with us. Many of us might be on the verge of giving up on our dream of ever achieving online business and life success.

    Your story can encourage us to persevere.

    As with anything worth while, it may be a struggle along the way to getting there but as you have shown, it is worth it.

    Thanks again,

    Willie Robertson

  • http://dreameurotrip.com DJ Yabis

    you deserve all these great things Pat! thanks for inspiring the rest of us.

  • http://www.kickdigital.com Matt H

    Hey Pat, great story. Always love to read about how people got started.
    Thanks for sharing.

  • http://www.jobsinayurveda.com Bill

    Pat,

    You are definitely my roll model. I am in the same shoes you were in in 2008 only I have a mortgage, children, and a wonderful wife. Fortunately, I have been one of your followers for a year now and I am enacting a plan loosely based on yours with a little twist of my own.

    Even though my back is against the wall, I know I’ll be in good shape within a few months thanks to what you’ve been writing on this site.

    Keep it coming.

  • John

    Pat, great story. I think the two biggest things to learn is , nothing good comes overnight (except lottery winnings and inheritance) and that genuine products and content pays off in the long wrong.

  • Jason

    Wow Pat great story. Its always great to hear about how people have to struggle some to make it to where they are at today. People dont realize how hard people work to make the big bucks. I am 32 years old and it took my Father about that much time to start making 40k plus a month, and he just lucked out. I am personally starting a new adventure in the next few weeks starting a local trucking business running freight for different businesses. I also have a membership site that is supposed to help people get quality content and links coming out as well. So a lot on the plate. Its so true about how you said you have nothing to loose and if you dont take the plunge and give it a shot you just will never know. I am glad to see everything working out for you and your family and hope that it continues for many years to come.

    Jason

  • http://www.moneyspruce.com Jeffrey

    This is one of my favorite posts, Pat. I remember you telling this story in a podcast from way back, but it’s great to get all the details.
    This is also very timely, as I just mentioned your story in my last post on my blog. I’ve always found it so inspirational with how you took a negative in your life and turned it into an amazing opportunity (and now an awesome, full-fledged business!)
    A lot of people seem to think you need a big break or get lucky somehow. But I like your story since it proves that’s not true – you just need to create the opportunity for great things to happen. Thanks, Pat!

  • http://about.me/apontius Andrew

    Awesome story, Pat. I’ve been following your journey since my own layoff from an architecture firm in ’09. It’s been a real pleasure and inspiration to watch and learn from your every step along the way.

  • http://www.personal-success-factors.com Steve-Personal Success Factors

    Pat, you’ve been one my main inspirations for continuing on in online business over the years. In fact, I don’t think you remember, but you actually offered me some online critique and suggestions way back in those beginning days. I’ve followed your success ever since, and am so grateful for the lessons I’ve learned from you. Listening to your podcasts has been one of my best resources, and thanks to your eBook guide, I’ve designed two of them. Like Zig Ziglar says, You can have everything you want in life, if you’ll just help enough people get what they want. You’ve done that hands down!

  • http://talesofwork.com Kimanzi Constable

    Thanks for this Pat it’s very inspiring. I think the most important message in this post is that we have to take action. You can have all the research and knowledge but it means nothing without taking action.

    I read your ebook and used it to create two of my ebooks, which have now crossed over 25,000 copies sold! So a HUGE thank you!

  • http://www.catmoney.de/ Andreas / CatMoney

    Great Story Pat :-)

    Hoping i will get my business to the next level too.
    Wasn’t laid off but my former webbusiness (sending free text messages) doesn’t work as well as in the last years.

    So have to move on with own products :-)

    Best Regards Andreas / Catmoney

  • Jason Poe

    Hi, Pat.

    Just wondering, do you ever miss architecture?

  • http://www.jonwiggens.com Jon

    I was pretty familiar with your story from your podcast Pat but it was very insightful to read in more detail about how you got your start.

    It just goes to show that there is definite hard work involved in building a successful online business and no “get rich quick” secrets to achieve the kind of success you’ve seen.

  • Shayna

    One reason I think the site and ebook have been so successful is that they solve a very SPECIFIC problem (or pain point) for a very specific group of people. You didn’t start a general “day in the life of an architect” blog or “news from around the construction world” blog. Not to say those models couldn’t be successful, but they’re pretty broad and vague. Your LEED exam prep blog/book stands out because it’s laser-focused, and if I was preparing for such an exam, I’d certainly buy a guide from a site that specializes in it!

  • http://cuerpoaldente.com/ Dennis

    Nothing to say but amazing and inspiring story, you can imagine how much this makes us keep working on our dreams, it’s definitely not easy and requires tons of work

    gracias!

  • http://www.nichesiteadventures.com Johnny Bravo

    Great post Pat. You’re a true inspiration as I work to build the same kind of online income. Thanks for your story.

  • http://www.extramoneyblog.com Sunil from The Extra Money Blog

    there is a key underlying message in this story, whether conscious or subconscious, and that is that go getters find a way to make things work. I love the attitude of pursuing your passion because you had nothing to lose but an opportunity. everyone at some point should try that “why not” approach – at least once.

    congratulations to your success Pat

  • Curtis Dilworth

    Thanks for the post Pat! I spend alot of time (too much) at your site and wondered how could you go from 0 to 7,000 in 1 month. Thanks for backdrop. If you would have known about Aweber back then you would have REALLY crushed it!

  • Lance Bailey

    Pat,
    This is more inspiring to me, than all your income reports combine.
    I have been that guy that every year says I’am going to take Online business serious, but all i do is learn new programming languages and never build any thing. I love you story, because it inspires me to just build something and put it out there. More importantly I love the work ethic you put in to get where you are at today.

  • http://www.geargenius.com Tim

    great post. Glad to hear it took a little time to get to where you are now. It gives the rest of us hope.

  • http://www.best-concealed-carry.com Adam

    Awesome story Pat, I’ve snippets of your story through Podcast interviews that you had done with other bloggers. It’s great to read and the journey you had to make to get where you are. Thanks for sharing.

  • http://onlineincomehowto.com Matthew

    Excellent story Pat! Very interesting how you stumbled upon your niche and were able to grow and learn from the experience. I laughed a bit at the notion of adding tables to wordpress. I think I put about 8 hours into trying to learn how to code a plugin because I didn’t like the solutions offered.

  • http://www.brockstarlife.com Brock @ BrockStarLife

    Very inspiring….always nice to read something like this for a little boost in motivation!

  • Patrick

    Great story, Pat. Yes, that first time you see money coming in is really exciting. It still is for me. Lately I’ve been making as much or more sometimes in my online business as I do in my full time job. I have a little cash register sound that goes off whenever I get an order via email – lol! Needless to say I love that sound!

  • http://www.guitarwoodexperts.com Mike

    Pat,

    Great story! It’s inspiring to read the details of true success. You’ve earned it!

    I have one question: how did you remain focused when you made the conscious decision to pursue an income from the internet? Did you ever find yourself suffering from the “bright shiny object” syndrome?

    Before the internet – I would read the “business opportunity” adverts in the back of magazines to see what they said. I wasn’t so much interested in what they were selling – it was how they were selling – ad copy fascinated me.

    Fast forward 30 years and that curiosity about ad copy has made staying focused a major pain. Today – there are so many legitimate ways to make money on the internet – I have to be very careful to keep the blinders on :)

    Cheers!

    Mike
    Portland, Oregon

  • http://profitablebusinesstips.com Sven

    How did you remember the exact dates? You must have gone back to old accounts , emails etc to probably check them again? Nice story to tell!

  • Mark Washburn

    I absolutely love this story. We all get here in a variety of ways, but if you put in the work, stay at it, and keep learning, good things will come.

  • Andre

    Pat,
    I came across your website 2 weeks ago searching for ideas about passive income techniques. Until I found your website I did not know anything about making a living from the internet in the ways you describe. I thank you for the introduction into this world. I am in the process of creating my first blog and I look forward to the challenge of trying to create another secondary income stream via the internet. Your story provides me with some more fuel for the fire and I am sure I will be reading it more than once.
    Keep up the good work.
    Andre

  • http://www.copysean.com Sean King

    Thanks for this post Pat. To me, the story telling and journey is just as powerful as the numbers. I’m trying to do the same exact thing with my blog. I seemed to have found some success selling an eBook on my authority site like you so I’ve created a blog to share my experience as well.

    After reading your post, I can see that I have some stepping up to do! You’re writing seems to be so much more intelligent and engaging lol. Anyways, just wanted to say thanks.

    p.s. The fact you’re from San Diego makes me feel even more connected to you. I go to school at UCSD!

  • http://mytechmadesimple.com Scott Eklund

    Great post Pat!
    Not a lot of marketers go in to detail about the beginning of their online marketing journey, and how it usually takes over a year of hard work to monetize effectively, but I’m glad you did.

    The sacrifices that you made, like moving back in with the family in order to have enough money really impressed me, and it was great to see how you turned problems like being laid off in to opportunities. Please keep up the great work, you’re an inspiration to a lot of people!

  • J

    Nice post. It gave me inspiration. I am going to get a domain right now and start to put all that I have learned from you and others to work. I am in a similar situation except I am about to start a job that I would rather not have. It is going to give me consistent income where I have not yet learned to make online however, it is not a safe haven. So many jobs are laying people off from work that it is ridiculous. I am no longer going to allow this to be the norm for me. I can’t leave my future to someone else any longer. I am glad you broke down how you made your income because it seems more achievable. I am going to try just what you described in this post and see how it turns out. The worst thing I think I could do is not try.

  • http://www.blogging24h.com Trung Nguyen

    Thanks Pat for sharing your own story on starting your online business. It’s a long journey, and that’s why you told us “the kinds of things you’re teaching are not “get rich quick” schemes” – thanks so much.

  • Ivan Nakasone

    Excellent post Pat. I really appreciate how you go into detail about how you started in internet business, especially since I am a newbie myself.

  • http://www.tropicalmba.com Dan

    So cool to look back on it now, that mastermind was so meaningful to me as well. Get this– 2 weeks ago I was sitting on my patio in Bali with Kevin !!! Nuts.

  • http://www.marketing-tools-review.com Hock

    What a great story, Pat. It’s nice to hear real stories like this on how hard work + dedication led to success. You have a gift for writing. Keep it up. I just found your blog a couple of days ago.

  • http://Www.freightbrokerbootcamp.com Dennis Brown

    I like when people say how successful entrepreneurs are “lucky”
    Because its stories like yours that prove the old adage “the harder I work the luckier I get”

    Great job and keep sharing Pat!

  • http://www.mymultipleincomes.com Robert

    Awesome story Pat. I love hearing how you started out as it sounds very close to where I am now and I aspire to achieve what you have!

  • http://www.aprender-chino-mandarin.com/ Daniel (languagedan)

    Pat, of all your posts in the last year+, this one’s my favorite. I’m now writing the book I wish I had when I first started learning Chinese.

    –Daniel

  • http://www.hardgainerwisdom.com Pj

    This is a great story.. it’s inspiring to see how far you’ve come. Thanks for the post Pat a.k.a Passive Aggressive Income Dude!

  • http://www.newbasketballcoaches.com William

    Thanks for the story pat – I really enjoyed it. It gives me hope.

  • http://www.sociallending.net Peter Renton

    Great story Pat, it was worth the effort it took to write it. I also remember my first sale of my product – it was a very exciting time knowing that people are willing to pay for what you have created.

    The thing that struck me is that you started out just trying to help people. I think that is the key. If you had been focused on making an income right away it might have taken you longer to achieve the success that you have had.

  • http://www.imlifeline.com James @ IM Lifeline

    Such an inspiration, this is how I started with my offline business, and now 3 years later things are flying.
    Just need to apply the same ‘overnight success’ to my online business!

  • Ron

    This is a great story. Thank you for sharing.

    The part about

    …”where people were getting voted off the island and you always wondered if you were next.”…

    That was the same feeling for me. I was lucky enough to have work until May 2009.

  • http://breakthefear.com Matt Horwitz

    Pat! I loved this post! I was very interested to hear about your start, the hard work, and the mindset that went into all you created. I started laughing, getting excited, and even teary-eyed when I read “Another sale! While I was outside! What?!” LOL – LOVE IT!

    Thanks for all you do my friend. You are encouraging myself and many others to stick on the path. The work is hard and time needs to be invested, but what lies on the other side is oh so sweet. Keep rockin’ man !!!

  • http://plrarticlesemporium.com Jay Campbell

    What a great timeline. Sometimes it is easy to forget that everyone has to start somewhere. This shows that it isn’t necessarily fast and requires hard work. Thanks Pat.

  • http://www.projectlifemastery.com Stefan Pylarinos from Project Life Mastery

    Such a remarkable story Pat. Goes to show the power of having a deadline and making something a MUST, along with the power of a mastermind and receiving a little tidbit of advice that can change everything for you.

    Thanks, you have provided so much for me!

  • http://www.frontierlivin.com Taylor

    Pat,

    What a cool story. As someone just getting started in IM it’s refreshing and funny to hear all the stupid things you were doing. All that time I spent yesterday trying to figure out WP plugins doesn’t make me feel so dumb anymore.

  • http://www.startingpcrepair.com/ Austin Kelly

    It’s so inspiring seeing that you turned your knowledge and application of a skill into a resource and online income. I recently have experienced the same roller coaster ride of releasing a informational product that you once had.

    There’s nothing like the feeling of a first sale… :)

  • http://getbusylivingblog.com Benny

    Thanks for sharing that Pat. Great to read about how all of this got started in more detail.

    That’s funny you wanted to called it Passive Aggressive Income Dude. You didn’t think about Lazy Aggressive Income Dude? :)

  • http://www.getbesthomebusiness.com Sammy@Best Home Business

    Wow!!! Amazing journey… I think this post should have come much earlier. This gives real insight into your entrepreneurial journey and will be of much help to those wanting to follow the same way.

    Most people just want to highlight their peaks while hiding the downsides. But you’ve openly spoken about how you struggled, that’s very inspiring.

    Cheers!!

  • http://blogtipswriter.com/ Tho Huynh

    It’s really motivative Pat. It shows that build great content first and Google will come to you :)

  • Belsien Thomas

    Great post Pat, this is great inspiration and proof that it takes action combined with constant motivation and determination to reach true and lasting success in ANY business.

    There’s a great quote that I think is demonstrated well with your path to success, it goes: “The great aim of education is not knowledge but action!”, the more action we take the more we will grow and learn from our experiences with every success and failure.

    Speaking about taking action, are there any other Online Business courses or programs you recommend that provides current and time tested/proven steps for success in online business AND access to Mastermind groups/tools other than Internet Business Mastery? From what I know, the IBM course costs a few thousand dollars and if someone is not making that much income with their current online businesses it becomes a harder cost to justify, at least for an initial course.

    Keep up the great work man!

  • http://www.timsamaniego.com Tim

    Interesting story… Well, I could’ve been happy with just $5.00 to $7.00 a day… I haven’t received this amount of income with three blogs in over two years that I’ve blogged… I do wonder what I’m doing wrong… I managed to sell some stuff through affiliate programs though related to my niche, that feels quite good. However, I’d like a more regular income with adsense.

  • http://www.catscratchposts.co.uk James Howie

    As a complete newbie to this IM world, I have found your posts to be consistently helpful and very informative. There are so many charlatans out there ( I have read many, MANY different articles to know this to be true) yet you stand out as being one of the good guys. Honesty is undoubtedly the best policy and I will be sure to continue following your approach (and hopeful share some of the success of this way of working, of course!). Thanks again, Pat

  • http://www.websitemarketingtricks.com Marius

    2 inspiring posts in one day. Yours and the one glen posted with so much reading. Guys, your rock!

  • Jeff

    Once again a great motivational piece Pat. Just goes to show what can be done when the mindset is right whatever the reasons behind why you are doing it.

  • http://yourhowtoblogguide.com/ Spatch Merlin

    Such a detailed story. And it is very inspiring! Nice to know how things started here.

    Spatch Merlin
    How to Blog Guide

  • http://themesforge.com Ed

    Fantastic story Pat! Just shows how important it is to have a topic you can create lots of valuable content for and give it away for free before looking to then monetize. In many ways you stumbled upon the absolute best Internet marketing strategy without spending years messing around with get rich quick schemes. Hard work, grit, passion for your subject matter and a little bit of entrepreneurial flair are the recipe for success!

    Ed

  • http://www.passiveincome2U.com Mike Cairns

    Hi Pat,
    A brilliant story. Thanks for sharing it with us. There are too many people offering quick rich schemes out there but we know it takes a lot of hard work to get going. Thanks for your blog. I only just started reading it and it has given me some great iinformation and ideas for my new blog.
    Take care and keep blogging.
    Thanks
    Mike,Perth, Scotland.

  • http://mobilelifestyledesign.com John @ Mobile Lifestyle Design

    That’s a great story Pat! It made me think back to my beginnings and all my stops and starts. I still remember the feeling I had when the first Paypal notification came to my inbox. That was a surreal moment for me too.

    Thanks for being one of the most inspirational people in the online marketing space!

    Thanks,
    John Koen

  • http://www.vancouverdreamrentals.com/vancouver-vacation-rentals.php Ghayoor

    Really a very dedication and hardworking is required for the success. We can earn penny but wisely spending is rather big issue. However, this story boost my will power and finally now i will build my own castle:)

  • http://www.planetnaveen.com Naveen Kulkarni

    Hi Pat,
    Thanks so much for sharing your story. You almost walked me through the journey witnessing those milestones of achievements.

    Your story also reveals the kind of humble person you are. Willing to learn and open to ideas. That’s why SPI is such a fantastic resource when it comes to passive income or blogging guide.

    Keep up the great work Pat and thank you so much.

  • Matt Brighton

    A real inspirational story Pat. Would love to read in this much detail, how it progressed from there onwards rather than reading the short stories through the monthly reports!

  • Sean Chang

    What a great story!

    Interestingly enough, I was just listening to your interview with Yaro Starak on entrepreneurs-journey yesterday and this post really completes the story.

    Way to turn around the situation. I especially appreciate how you’re giving back to the community with all the great content you create.

    Looking forward to seeing you break new records with your business.

    All the best!

  • http://businessofarchitecture.com Enoch

    Wow, Pat, this gave me goose bumps.

  • http://www.ArcanaDea.com/blog/ Nathalie Thompson

    Thanks for this one, Pat — it’s really useful to see how other people, especially those like you who have this whole thing figured out already, got started. Gives me hope that I will be able to do the same thing, too! You’ve also given me some ideas for where to go next with my own site. :-)

  • Matt

    Pat,

    I’ve been reading your blog for a year and a half and this is the post that made me finally get off my ass.

    Thank you !!

  • http://www.growbankaccount.com Jeff the Entrepreneur

    Pat,

    Where are you all along? :)
    I have been in the internet business for almost 3 years now but I am so glad to found this website of yours.
    I still learn a lot (despite of “my experience”) :)
    Your story is simply amazing and your income…. wow!

    Thanks,
    Jeff

  • http://www.epcinvest.be Didier

    Inspiring story! I always wondered what was the whole story before your first income report. It’s fascinating to know this, and it’s different for everybody!

  • http://www.money-cake.com Patrick

    Great rags to riches story. Keep up the great work Pat. U R MY IDOL!

  • Nick

    This post made my day! (and I had a pretty great day already). I was laughing and smiling as I read it. I work for a company in China as a cultural liaison/teacher/translator, and having been struggling to some up with a site, though I know I have something here somewhere… This post has given me enough drive to get something out onto paper though, and hopefully go the rest of the way.

    Thanks!
    Nick

  • http://www.thecopybox.co.uk Loz James

    Hi Pat

    This is a GREAT story – really inspiring. Thanks for sharing it with us :-)

    Cheers!

    Loz

  • http://www.webbusinesstoolbox.com/blog/2012/03/25/i-woke-up-last-night-internet-marketing-doubts/ Monja

    Pat, Amazing Story – Glad to See that it Costs everyoneva Fortune (Not in Money but Time) to get Things going. And how Many Times so wie want to throw in the towel before it actually Works? I stopped counting but the Point is that i still enjoy what i do :-)
    Thanks for Sharing your Story!

  • http://www.adulthockeyteams.com Adrian

    Thanks Pat,

    Very motivating to see how you started your business. Posts like these make me think that making a living online is possible/realistic :P

  • http://www.nickloper.com Nick Loper

    Truly an inspirational story, not just about Internet marketing, but about financial independence and not having to rely on anyone else for a paycheck.

    It’s a testament to building something with real value FIRST, and worrying about the payoff later.

    And I think it’s important to hear about the countless hours of sweat equity and education that went into your success — it’s easy to read the income reports and forget about all the hard work that went into earning those dollars!

    Best,
    Nick

  • http://evergreennoto.blogspot.com/ Noto E. Noto

    Hi, Pat! Always a great source of inspiration and encouragement, God Bless you.

  • http://www.victoralexon.com Victoralexon

    Hey Pat,

    I remember reading this story before, both on this blog but also, if I am not mistaken, in your ebook.

    Interesting to hear it in more detail nonetheless.

    Kind regards,

    Victoralexon

  • http://robsorbo.com Rob S.

    Thanks for sharing. It’s definitely an inspirational story. I don’t know what service I could offer for sale, but it’s definitely inspiring to know it can be done.

    • http://www.easyoptionstradingstrategies.com Dale @ options trading strategies

      Rob,

      Just start with your hobbies. Think “easy” work and things you would do even if you did not get paid for it. That is how I started and I was surprised at how much I actually knew.

      My girlfriend is from Europe and she hard time adjusting to the US life. I told her she could write about her experiences and help others that are coming after her. She could probably educate me on a few things about the process.

      She likes to download music on the internet. I told her she could even write a blog on how to do that.

      Hope this helps you come up with some ideas.

      Dale

  • http://www.easyoptionstradingstrategies.com Dale @ options trading strategies

    Another great read Pat! Hopefully this will now quiet some of the nay sayers to your income reports.

    Because of one of your articles I went from 4 visitors a day on one of my blogs to over 120 visitors per day on that same blog.

    I took a similar approach to you. I wrote a lot of good information that people can use, and now I am working on monetizing.

    I guess I need to do some more studying of your posts, because you make the process unbelievably simple for someone willing to put the work in :)

    Keep up the good work buddy and I wish you continued success.

    Dale

  • http://[email protected] Mike@Marketing

    That was a long skim read, it was interesting at any rate.

  • James Eustice

    Great story Pat! It just goes to show that hard, or smart, work pays off in the end. Keep up the great work.

  • http://boldanddetermined.com Victor Pride

    Highly interesting story.

    I was elated the first time I made a few pennies online, and then a few dollars.

  • http://lazyassgamer.com/ George

    Interesting to see that it took you a while before you actually started to make a decent amount of money online. I have been running my blog for a few months now and I only get a couple £ a day. Guess I just have to keep at it.

  • http://www.networkerforbusinesswomen.com Lourdes Welhaven

    This is perhaps the best post I’ve ever ever ever read on the subject. Because it makes it seem attainable. Good for you for recognizing an opportunty…how awesome that you belonged to such a great mastermind group AND that you took their advice. Wow all around…thanks for sharing.

  • http://www.digitalnomadjourney.com Jeff Bronson

    It’s great to hear a real story about how you arrived in this particular place in your career. This is a real and honest account of how you were faced with a potential crisis and powered through it.

    I think the real key here, is that you created a site that had real value, you helped others in the process and it paid off.

  • http://planeters.com Joe Wong

    It was nice to finally know in detail how everything went backstage. A true inspiration as always.

    Congrats and keep the good work!

  • http://jarodonline.wordpress.com/ Jarod Online

    Wow man, I really learned a lot from reading this post. You became an authority in your blog’s niche without even knowing it, by just helping people with the knowledge you learned. And you even advertised your blog without knowing it as well–you did it through social marketing (sharing with the forums’ community). That was amazing to read and learn, especially how you had a completely different perspective for all of this… even on this blog.

    Great post man. I’m going to update my blog tonight and write about this. I’m going to implement these lessons too. This is truly a blessing to read your post man.

    Thanks!!

  • http://Www.fromdreamstolifestyle.com Patrick

    Wow, great story Pat. I’m really glad to see how much work you put into building your business. It’s very easy to get taken by all the hype online and think you can make it in the first 3 months. It quickly becomes apparent how much work is necessary to become suffcessful when you realize that money won’t come in the door unless you work your butt off and push yourself through the failures and sacrifices you have to make in order to succeed. And those sacrifices often last for month before anything significant happens. Atleast for the majority of entrepreneurs. Very inspiring.

  • http://paidwritehq.com Rose Smith

    Hi Pat,
    Inspirational post! I love that saying:”I had nothing to lose but an opportunity.” And what an opportunity it’s turned out to be! Not only for you, but everyone you inspire. You’re definitely a great teacher. Thanks.

    Take care,
    Rose Smith
    paidwritehq.com

  • http://www.magicactionbox.com/blog Dean soto

    Hi Pat,

    I love the story, Pat. It’s definitely different reading it than hearing it, since you can go into so much more detail.

    Anyway, been thinking since you got in a bit early with the LEED exam training (the free writing you did), do you think you would have been able to do the same if there was more competition simply because you were passionate about learning and passing the exam (at least at the time)?

    What I mean is, had you planned on monetizing your blog from the beginning rather than passionately create valuable content that YOU yourself needed, would it had been as successful? Or would the thought of creating content with the idea of monetizing have stifled the site a bit?

    Dean

  • Phil

    Wow great story Pat! It shows that we all need to focus on building high quality products and services, and with just a little push many people will do all of the promoting for us.

    I enjoyed reading about your past and the hard work you put in to get to where you are today. Thank you.

  • http://emagrecerperderbarriga.com Matheus

    Congrads man, you sure have here an inspirational article to anyone who wants to make money online, very nice history, loved to read it, congratulations again :D
    Thanks!

    Matheus

  • http://www.crochetingforbeginners.org bryan

    wow pat, very inspiring, thanks for the story, Helps me keep my chin up when it doesnt seem like im getting anywhere with my site. Grats on all the success too!

  • http://Www.whataremangroves.com Tansey Louis

    Your story is truly inspiring. One thing we can take away is to always do our best to create valuable content on our blogs. We should treat our readers with the same respect that we would like to be treated.

  • Kim

    It’s great to hear the full story! As always your story is inspiring.

  • http://www.blogging-the-beginners-complete-guide.com Karo Itoje

    Oh Pat, this is so inspiring and thanks for sharing!

    Sometimes people envy successful bloggers thinking success fell on their laps without any struggle. True stories like this remind us that consistent determination for success and hard-work always pays off. The road to success might be bumpy but if you push hard enough you’ll make it.

    Personally this story encouraged me to keep pushing and fighting for success. You know I’m working on my first ebook launch and it’s been some serious hard-work with a constant mixed feeling.

    The excitement of seeing the finished product and the constant feeling of what if it fails? What if after all the work it doesn’t sell and things like that.

    Now more than ever I am determined to make the book launch a success.

    I have never doubted that you deserve your level of success. But I’ll say it to you now that you do deserve it! You put your heart into everything you do and that’s so admirable.

    Please do always spoil your wife for believing in you. Just knowing that someone cares for you and believes in you usually gives one the strength beyond what is normal to keep pushing.

    I think a better title for the article would have been “The Making of Pat Flynn of Smart Passive Income”

    It has a nice ring to it doesn’t it? :)

  • Samuel

    I want to continue learning internet marketing from you Pat. You are no longer a commodity. You are the ONLY source. When is your IM e-book coming out?

    -Samuel

  • http://www.windows8hacks.com/ sjay Wicky

    Amazing Story that could change many lives. I felt like I was watching a movie. Best part is it is real. Wish you all the best Pat and thanks for the great support you are providing through your blogs.

    Thanks
    Kind Regards
    Sjay

  • http://www.h2affiliatemarketing.com Tony Miller

    Great post Pat! It’s amazing how quickly you got into making money online. It is good you already had a steady stream of traffic coming to your site :)

    Nothing is better than seeing that “notification of payment received” in your email!

  • http://www.online-business-virtual-assistant.com S.S. Roy

    There is no doubt that the internet has forever changed the world in which we live. So it can only be expected that it would change the way we sell and marketing our businesses globally.

  • http://opticmemory.ca Wil

    Hey Pat.

    Awesome and inspiring tale. Thank you for your wisdom.

    Cheers,
    Wil

  • http://www.workfromhomeideas.co.za Teresa Schultz

    You hope that this inspires your readers? I can’t see it doing anything but! This is an amazing story and definitely inspiring. Love how there was sort of a path you didn’t even know about at the time – everything you did or experienced led to the next thing, or, ultimately, where you are today. Laughed out loud too at your buying your own ebook 4 times. This was a fantastic read. Well done, Pat, on moving on to the next thing after each thing you did or experienced. You soooo deserve every last cent you’ve ever earned, and getting to where you are today.

  • http://RealAdamBryan.com Adam Bryan

    This story is very motivating and encouraging. Thanks for sharing Pat!

    -Adam

  • http://TimsMinions.com Andi

    great post Pat thanks for sharing this with us, this bit really made me smile…

    “I was definitely enjoying the WordPress part a lot more than I was enjoying the studying, but I often gave myself the excuse that working on the site and making it look nice was a form of studying.”

    You say excuse but you were right all those years ago, it was study and it has served you well, look at you now, a field leader and professional.

    To you sir I doff my hat in admiration and respect.

    Andi

  • http://www.lifestylebusinessdesign.com/ Matt john Canty

    Hey Pat been reading your blog for a long time cool to see your full back story on how you got started…its inspiring that someone so great can come from such simple beginnings. Cheers mate!

  • http://www.profitworks.ca Chris R. Keller From Profitworks.ca

    Hey Pat, that is such a great story.

    That is awesome. I love it. It is such a good feeling when you get that first sale.

  • http://LouisvilleGalsRealEstateBlog.com Sharon Vornholt

    Awesome, awesome story Pat. You have inspired so many people myself included to just go for it. I love the challenge.

  • Marina V.

    So very inspirational, Pat, thank you!..

  • http://www.slagtermedia.nl christian

    I found your website a couple of months ago and gald that I have. In the Netherlands you have some websites that do the same, but your story of how it all started is awesome! Keep up the good work!

  • http://housewifeempire.com Nell

    This story was inspiring. You got as far as you did because of your sheer drive. It’s something to aspire to, for sure… My problem is motivation, I wish I had as much as you…

  • http://www.technofreaky.com Ayush

    Hi Pat,
    It is really interesting and inspirational. I think your dedication and hardwork is responsible for your huge success. I think luck also played a major role i.e. your luck helped you in your transformation from a day job to full time blogger.

  • Ben

    This will go down as one of your classic posts pat, thanks for the constant inspiration

  • http://wieerstelleicheinehomepage.de/ Lubo Nikolov

    Thank you for this great post and the amazing podcast. I found you via iTunes and have listened to all the episodes. I am a young architect myself (in Europe) so your story is very inspiring to me. I apreaciate it a lot that you are continuing to share this great information even after being successful!

  • http://www.adsensetips.dk Jesper

    Thanks Pat. It’s important for newbies reading your blog to understand that you are not an overnight success.

  • http://www.freebrowsinglink.com Legendkid

    You sir are my hero!

  • Ruben

    Hello Pat

    Very happy reading your history in internet, thanks for share this. im in this way too.

    but more with iphone apps,, by the way thanks for the information too.

    hope grow up more and more and i can learn more and more too : )

    sincerely,

    Rubén

  • http://extraincomeblogger.com Sune @ Extra Income Blogger

    Thank you, this is so inspirational! When you stumble upon someone’s (already successful) blog, you sort of get the same impression you do from your parents – that they were sort of born as parents, they could never have been a child like you… Your post sort of shows “hey, this blog didn’t just exist as it is, it had to be ‘born and raised’ and took a lot of time and hard work!” Lol, thanks for giving us a peek.

  • http://www.maximiseyourdollar.com Xan

    Thanks for sharing your story and letting it be an inspiration to me. This is exactly what i need to kick start me again. Thanks, and i look forward to reading more great articles from you!

  • http://www.active-net.it Alex

    Pat, I’ve been reading your blog for a half year and thanks to your advice my site has gone from 50th to 10th position for my primary keyword on Google! From your story now i learned to be more patient! (sorry for my english, i’m italian)

  • Leonard

    Pat, this is the story I always wondered about. Thanks for sharing it. More power to you.

  • http://phoenixabroad.com Dave Huss

    Awesome story Pat, most people don’t realize all the hard work you put in up front before seeing any return.

    I actually created a similar online business to yours providing a study guide for a popular college business exam (that for legal reasons shall not be named).

    I got my first 3 sales the same day I put up the sales page.

    It was a huge success… pulling in $2k-$3k per month in passive income.

    But then the company that makes the exam sued me and forced me to take the site offline forever.

    Full story:
    http://phoenixabroad.com/my-4hww-muse-was-so-good-it-got-me-sued-part-1/

    I was depressed and heartbroken… but soon after I applied and got the 3rd semester Tropical MBA internship… so I guess it all worked out in the end.

    Persistence is the key.

  • http://www.kentrecommends.com Kent F

    Pat – what I really appreciate about you is…. you don’t have to detail out the things you do – you could just gloss things over and “sell them”. But you do because you’re a stand-up, ethical guy (which is my no. 1 priority in life when dealing with people). In the end – it ends up being a win win – you help people understand on-line business (and more importantly!) believe – and you make a living simply helping others with reality-based facts. Thanks!

  • http://howtosellyourmusiconline.co.uk/ Dave G

    Hey Pat, thanks again for more inspiring stuff – I was wondering if I could ask you something – I don’t know if you’ll see it all the way down here, but I imagine you get an inhumane number of emails these days!

    I’m starting to feel that creating a successful site/blog requires more than just finding the right niche, the right numbers in Market Samauri, backlinking, persistance and following “rules” laid down by others for getting traffic – these things might get you some attention, but real success needs to come from originality, blazing a trail (as indeed SPI has done) and really helping people in a real-world way.
    I get a bit concerned when I see how many people are following instructions on how to build a niche site – with more and more google top 10s filled up with identical sites obviously designed to have just enough basic info and grab the adsense revenue – when being original, creative and valuable can shot you to the top of the pile!
    Do you think that there is a danger to simply following the “niche site by numbers” methods, and not engaging your own personality, style and imagination?
    Thanks if you get the chance to answer :)

    • Pat

      Hey Dave, great question. I think long term success comes with building a site that’s actually useful for people – whether that’s a blog with a backstory like GreenExamAcademy.com or SmartPassiveIncome.com, which comes with blazing trails – or a niche site where someone follows the paint by numbers approach. Take notice that I did say long term – and while following the steps to get to the top of the search engines does work plenty of the time (and often even when the site isn’t really that helpful – although Google is trying to change that) – it is those sites that are actually helpful, no matter the approach, that will find success.

      The problem lies when the getting to the top takes priority over providing great content – that’s when there’s a potential danger and risk involved.

      As far as personality, style and imagination – those are all indeed helpful, of course, and always encouraged, but for some niches they aren’t necessary – as long as the site, again, provides enough value and helps people do what they’re looking to do.
      :)

      • http://howtosellyourmusiconline.co.uk/ Dave G

        Thanks Pat -all good points, and you’ve got me thinking again!

        I think I’m probably just more drawn to doing things that have a bit of life to them, rather than paint by numbers stuff…having said that, you’ve also made me realise that sometimes I might be personalising things too much, where it actually hinders the usefulness of the site rather than helping it.

        So thanks…interesting perspective on it, cheers!

  • http://www.markaudas.com Mark Audas

    I first heard of you last year around January form your podcast. I was looking for investment podcasts, passive income. I found you, not what I was expecting, and I really enjoyed it. I bought my first domain a couple months later, but it wasn’t until this year that I finally started a blog.

    Thanks Pat . I really enjoy what you are doing. You rock!

  • http://Legalmarketingsys.com Eric T

    Hi Pat,
    Big supporter of yours via the blog and podcasts for at least a year.

    Just wanted to copy this back into my post. Cause I think Nick Loper’s point I worth repeating.

    “It’s a testament to building something with real value FIRST, and worrying about the payoff later.”

    That is my thoughts as to why people miss the marks. If you chase everything shiny, but are not willing to find the path that provides a real value then you will be missing the point.
    Build stuff that you would actually either use or want to find if you were interested in that topic and you will have found your way regardless of competition.

    Thanks Pat, love this post. Probably one my favorite.

  • http://pazer.blog.com/ Andreas Pazer

    Pat,

    I’ve been reading your blog for a year and a half and this is the post that made me finally get off my ass.

    Thank you !!

  • http://www.internetmarketingtofreedom.com/ Nathan Sloan

    I think these kinds of posts are a lot more inspiring and helpful
    than the “Im making $10,000 a month posts.”

    Love a good story )

  • http://bit.ly/IhdmkW Abderrahim

    Nice to hear how your business history has become a succesfull online business.
    Your blog is awesome and i have learn very much from you. Now i’m making a passive income.

    Keep up the good work!

    Greetings,
    Abderrahim

  • http://DavidLovesIt.com David Lovesit

    It’s astounding to see GROWTH in a small business when so many big companies are mumbling and fumbling around in the dark. Congrats Pat.

    I see you as a life long student, as well as a giver. I wonder if these two traits are part of the reason for your success? (the podcast is A+ btw!)

  • http://www.graduatejobtips.com/ Marc

    Great story Pat. Thanks for putting things in perspective, and making me realise that the road to monetisation is as arduous as any other. It still requires the hours and dedication that any other business does

  • http://www.yourbodygrooming.com Ern

    Wow, what can I say. Your story Pat is amazing. Love the way how your first 10 copies of ebooks were bought.

  • http://www.techmadoo.com cool91

    Your blog has always inspired me Pat.And you story is very very motivating and inspiring.It is rightly said Where There Is A Will There Is A Way.

  • Jarrod Ruez

    Great story Pat!

  • http://www.libres-et-heureux.com julien

    Incredible story Pat how you start in business blogs.

    Juste cause your 1st blog, LEED academy receive lot’s of trafic.

    You made lot’s of things good with no really knowledge in blogs and receive lot’s of trafic without even knowing it for long time.

    Tha’ts so great ! :)

  • http://whiteteethprofessionals.com Albert

    It is a truly inspiring story Pat. I relate my condition to yours as i am also getting married in 9 months. Fortunately I am not getting laid off as I am running my own education business, but I really need extra income to support my wedding. Your story motivates me that I should spend more hours per day to make my online business grow faster.

  • http://breakdancelernen.de/ Rock

    i enjoy reading your articles! you truly understand writing with emotions and your story makes me work even harder :)

  • http://ayurvedadosha.org Tina

    Hey Pat, thanks for sharing your awesome story! When I first read the short form of it on your about page, I started to actually believe the whole “make money from the internet thing” and got moving! Today, roughly a year later I’m seeing my first online dollars and it feels *amazing* but it’s incredibly hard work, too to put together real quality content and there’s always doubt if it’s good enough…
    All the way long it’s your story and your income reports that keep me motivated and to keep believing that it can be done. I can’t thank you enough for sharing all that!

  • http://www.investinrealestate101.com Jennifer

    Pat,

    I have a website that I built on a topic that is near to my heart. For a couple of years I posted on it regularly but haven’t posted anything for a year now. The website is PR3 and gets about 65 visits a day even though there hasn’t been any fresh content in over a year. Would you be interested in doing a podcast with me where you review my website and give me suggestions on how to add adsense, do banner ads (have gotten emails from people asking but have ignored it) and any other strategy to improve monetization from the website?

    Another question is do you recommend any guide on adsense that will show the best place to put ads and what kind and how to customize?

    Thanks for sharing your website, I started doing online marketing December 22, 2011 and my goal is to have the same level of success that you enjoy. You are an inspiration.

    Jennifer

  • http://www.salmanahsan.com Salman Ahsan

    Again, inspired! great stuff Pat. Seeing your growth doesnt really surprise me. The amount of work you have put in your stuff and being consistent all the time shows your dedication and proof of your success :) Good luck mate

  • http://personalfinancereset.com Dan@Personal Finance Reset

    Such a ridiculously inspiring story. Favorite part is probably how someone at your mastermind meeting immediately saw how well an eBook would do on your site and told you to do that. That is awesome.

  • Joe

    What amazing luck.
    You basically fell face first into a successful website on accident!
    What sets you apart is that you were smart enough to research and polish of your gold nugget you randomly tripped over and got the right advice for an ebook at the right time and then put in some hard work.

  • http://jak-zarobic-pieniadze.weebly.com/ Michal

    A great, personal, inspiring story that reads like a well-crafted first chapter of a novel. Who knows – maybe penning non-fiction is another avenue for you Pat. Good luck with everything.

  • http://www.kathrynhansen.com kathryn

    wow…you really got me excited to finish my e-book on drawing!! thanks…it’s the push i needed right now!! (i’m going to bookmark this post to keep me inspired!)

  • http://www.transformupa.com Marc

    I recently took the plunge and started an online business and my first website at http://www.transformupa.com. I sort of forgot to monetize my blog with adsense. Your post today reminded be of that.

    I’ve been kicking around the idea for an ebook for a while now. The formatting and publishing aspects often seem daunting, but your post has steeled my resolve to get it done. Do you think it’s a good idea to create a new page within my current site or buy another whole domain altogether for each new ebook?

  • http://honoluluaunty.com Honolulu Aunty

    Thanks much Pat! Even a baby boomer (old person) like me can gain so much from your great posts!

    Mahalo also for the free eBook on eBooks!

    Please let me know if you ever come to Hawaii and I’ll take you out for good eats!

    Aunty

  • http://bloggerfolder.com Haru

    Wow.. I love the way you write and explain all the details :)

    Honestly, its really inspiring me. I started my first online business doing some trading in a forum although it’s a failed..but since from that, i learned how to do the real online business :-)

  • http://www.bloggingresourceguide.com Justin Harmon

    Awesome Story Pat! Hopefully I will be telling mine in the future.

  • http://marketingwithsergio.com Sergio Felix

    Thanks for sharing your story man.

    Definitely inspiring, my only question for this, would this be something that still works NOW?

    I have seen many big marketers build insane offers for their lists and sell those for ridiculous prices these days… I’m not sure about this but can the big names actually be getting out of business slowly?

    No wonder why a lot of these “gurus” are all jumping to offline consulting and taking their products off the market because they are “growing” now.

    To me, it just sounds too good to be true.

    I really liked that you finally shared your REAL story.

    Sergio

    PS. I made about 30K-35K with building just one site (it’s still online too) but if I didn’t say it was a long term project and that I actually had many IT credentials and that it took about 1.5 years to complete, I would be sugar coating it quite a bit.

    This practice is something I have seen everywhere for people wanting to appear as successful as possible while trying to convince their readers that it is so easy to earn money online so they can sell a pdf for a few bucks in return.

    I’m glad you’re one of the transparent ones, definitely good job man! ;-)

  • http://www.thewebhostadvisor.com Basil Rehill

    The steps you took seemed so logical when I look at it. I am amazed that you made the right choices at the right times each time. Thank you for your story. It is inspiring

  • http://www.beautifullyorganised.com Marissa @ Beautifully Organised

    Pat, Thanks for getting me motivated again this morning with such a great post. You are amazing.

  • http://www.amsterdam-online.nl Stein Beun

    Very great blog, Like to read it very much. Thank Pat

  • Sanjiv Manifest

    Thanks for your candid and very inspiring story Pat !

  • Rich

    Pat,
    I’ve heard your story a few times and never get tired of hearing it, frankly. The subtext through the whole story is you took/take ACTION! Thanks for the inspiration, and for staying one cool *Humble* dude! Rich

  • http://bostonterriersrock.com Elise Rochelle

    Wow Pat – the timing of this post is spooky!

    I’ve got a site that’s a few months old and I’ve put in a ridiculous number of hours and today I finally made some money!

    I was beside myself with excitement when I saw the report and my bf even bought me a ‘breaking the seal’ gift.

    I made $0.38! Can’t believe I would ever get excited about earning 38c but it proved to me that it can be done.

    I’m also living in fear of being laid off – I work for a small business and it’s going down the toilet so it’s really just a matter of time.

    I hate working for other people and I really believe I have more potential going it alone. Now that I’ve earned 38c I know I can grow it and what a story it will be!

    Thanks for the inspiration!

  • http://www.amsterdam-online.nl Stein Beun

    Great stuff

  • http://www.secretsafebooks.com John Witham @ SecretSafeBooks

    My wife and I run an ecommerce website selling hollowed out books (SecretSafeBooks.com). Even though it’s not passive income there in so much your website has to offer aspiring online business people – especially a good attitude and the importance of taking action.

    I need to find a way to make some passive income from your tips. No doubt I will find much to help me here.

    Thanks for the great resource!

  • Craig Dargan

    Pat, thanks for the story. I can’t tell you how much I need the inspiration right now. I am in the process of spending 6 hours per day working on my online business, on top of a 12 hour day job. If I can achieve 1/4 of the success you have, it will be all worth it. Congratulations on your success, and keep up the sharing. it’s very important.

  • http://www.myjuicerreviews.org John

    Can’t wait till I start making money like that!! Nice job!!

  • http://www.shyentrepreneur.com TJ Mollahan

    Pat,
    Thank you for taking the time spell this out for me and the rest of your readers. So often I find sites the talk about success online but no one seems to give the full story. I also really appreciate your candidness when discussing how long it took to turn a profit. Best of luck to you, I love the site.

    TJ Mollahan
    ShyEntrepreneur

  • http:/plicatibu.com Marcio Andrey Oliveira

    I loved to read your history.

    It motivates me to keep going.

    Thank you so much for sharing.

  • http://www.simplyinvesting.com/blog/ Kanwal Sarai @ Simply Investing

    Pat,

    Thank you for sharing your story!! Very inspiring!

    cheers,
    Kanwal

  • http://www.notificationofpaymentreceived.net Anthony

    Great story Pat, very inspiring

  • Blake

    Thank for sharing. So how many site visits per month did you have when you got your first advertising contract in July – Sept of 2008?

  • http://www.deesrojournal.com/ Paolo Jorge Lojo

    awesome story pat! I have read about this story a couple times through posts, podcasts & interviews and it never gets old.

    I’m currently in the product(ebook) creation stage but i’m getting second thoughts. Do ebooks work in any market? Sure it might work well in the US but how about asian countries? My majority audience are basically online mmorpg gamers ranging from 14-24 years old(i’m 24). I’m having thoughts about it since online shopping is kind of taboo in our country. I barely got a credit card which is rather hard especially when you need a certain income or you just pay a fee which is how i got mine. I’ll be applying for a job soon at an game-publisher which might help me pay for more features that my site lacks, a newsletter(aweber). Yea, So basically i’m at a standstill whether to make an ebook or not. Any advice?

    anyways, i switched back to monetizing my site through adsense. I have about 3$ in my adsense account and things are looking rather grim since i rarely get a click on my ads. It may be my layout, positioning of the ads or even the traffic isn’t that big enough. I think it has something to do with how the ads are no way related to my niche. I do get a couple of diablo III ads which do get some clicks occasionally thank god. I have been looking into private advertising and affiliates which are mostly US products with shipping fees.

    If there is anyway you can help me out it would be appreciated. Thanks again!

  • http://kurrajonginteriors.com.au Suzanne

    Great story Pat, and something I needed to hear right now as I struggle to get my online project up and running! It makes a nice change from all the “overnight success” stories.
    Thanks for sharing! :-)

  • http://authenticselfquicktips.com Susan Lawrenz

    Pat -
    Thank you for sharing your history with us. I am a very new blogger with the dream of monetizing it so that one day I will be able to solely focus on my goal of not being dependent on an employer for a paycheck.

    I have no illusions that this is easy, especially given that I currently lack a lot of technical knowledge. I appreciate that you explained it takes time, but more importantly it is possible with dilligence and the willingness to do the work.

  • http://thedealwizard.blogspot.com/ DW

    gives me the push to go on and keep working

    http://thedealwizard.blogspot.com/

    • AB

      Do you mean that is the site? Just to give honest feedback, I appreciate it the effort, but don’t you think there is a bigger competition in this area? May be you have thought of it, or I am missing something. For example, try slickdeals.net to see the bigger community. If you are going to offer something unique, pl. ignore this message. All the best!

  • http://www.TravelGearForWomen.com Lenore Greiner

    Hi Pat! Greetings from Carlsbad!
    Spooky for me too. I’ve made about a hundred dollars on TravelGearForWomen.com after the first few months and now it’s time. So this post is extremely timely for me. I’m creating my first ebook – I’m not waiting a moment longer. My takeaway from your post is do the work and then make the jump. And keep taking action. Great post. Thank you!

  • http://wsotesters.com Josh Escusa

    Thanks for telling us your story! It’s very inspiring to see how people start out. For me I was actually planning to become a Physician Assistant. I had finished up all my pre med requirements and I completed a BS. in Psychology. Right about the time I should’ve been applying for PA school, I found internet marketing, and I started selling sites online. I was making a few thousand here and there, but I noticed I wasn’t growing as fast as I wanted to – so I made a transition into building Niche Sites and doing SEO.

  • http://www.aspiredtechie.com Sagar Gholap

    Hey, Pat! :)

    It was inspiring to read your story & get to know how you started with your internet business.

    I’m studying in my 2nd year of Engineering and manage to earn enough for my offline expenses but can’t yet consider it to be dependable. I like your advices and have been your subscriber since Jan 30th, 2011 and trust me I can’t even think of hitting the Unsubscribe link anytime soon. Keep on sharing great information. You’re a great inspiration for me :)

  • pat farren

    I just love reading your posts pat and I have followed you for nearly 2 years now .
    You are just so positive and anytime I see your emails in my inbox if I do not read straight away I book mark them to make sure I do not miss one.Each and every mail you send out has some useful content that we all can use some way or other in our business lives.
    Thanks Pat from Pat here in Ireland.

  • http://LifeMotivationSuccess.com Jeremiah Say

    I love the way you wrote your story (Failure to success kind). It’s really very inspiring. You proof to many of us that IM works if we have the correct information.

    Thank you Pat.

  • Em-Em

    I hope to also have my own online business… And hopefully, I’ll succeed like you… I hope it’s not yet too late for me… I’ll keep on reading your blogs for more tips… :)

  • Chris @ NPI

    Great post, Pat. Some people think, that making money online is fast and easy, which isn’t true. Of course sometimes it’s possible, but in most cases it’s similar to offline business – success needs a lot of time and sacrifice :)

  • http://www.facebags.blogspot.com Cudjoe

    I am highly inspired.

  • http://tcenterprisegolf.com Janet Taylor

    Just finished your great article about how you started you on line business. I have found it to be very incouraging as I am 8 months into my Affiliate Marketing business. I am doing this on a “shoe string” and find the advertising quite expensive, but like I said I find your writing very encouraging.

  • http://foodforagingcourses.co.uk/ Tim

    Thanks again Pat for such a great post.

    The smaller income can be dis-spiriting, I make around £1 a week from Adsense but have sold advertising for £100.

    I now need to figure out how to increase readership and create a product on my Food Foraging Courses directory site.

    All the best and thanks again.

    Tim

  • http://www.ycreatingawebsite.com/ Zaeem

    I thank you every day from time I first found your blog.
    Its a true resource center for those of us who are looking to achieve or reach a higher position than we in right now.
    This inspiring article is truly a positive inspiration to work hard until we reach where we want to.
    By the Pat it would be very nice of you if you could write an article about back links and google’s new approach to to social signs.
    Hope to see an article coming soon.
    Thanks
    Zaeem

  • http://www.thelmaharcum.com/ArtMediums Thelma Harcum

    Hi Pat,
    Your story is so inspirational. Thanks for sharing so much of your passage
    to success.
    It truely is a success story in these days and times.
    Keep up the great work. You have helped all of us in some way.
    I got a lot of tips from your ebook, too. I had never heard of e-junkie before reading it.

    Thanks so much and I wish you even more success.

  • Adrian

    It’s amazing how the timing was perfect and things lined up in your life to take that new direction. Thank you for being real and candid. I know you get this a lot, but you are an inspiration, Pat. I’m using your phrase as motivation when things get tough, “I had nothing to lose, but an opportunity.” God bless!

    -Adrian

  • http://shinyshoestring.com Jarratt

    Hi Pat,
    I’m a recent subscriber to your podcast and this is my first read on your blog.

    What an inspiring post.

    I’m just starting out now in blogging, and this has truly given me more or a burning desire.

    Thanks a lot

  • http://www.xplorglobal.com Judy

    Hi Pat, thanks for showing us that we need to be real when it comes to web commerce. I started reading your article last night, but stopped. And started again in the morning when I am fresher. I have been working on my web pressence one year, hope I am on the right track.

    Thanks
    Judy

  • http://www.sociallyfamous.com Feraz

    I have heard your story on countless interviews and podcasts so I really enjoyed to read about more detail. Nice post.

  • http://www.thejobdelusion.com Kevin

    Inspiring stuff! I’ve just spent the last 4 months writing an eBook and have just completed building my blog site for it following the posts on this site.

    So thanks for all your generous help Pat :-)

    Kevin Boyd
    http://www.TheJobDelusion.com

  • http://www.familysponge.com Jadah Sellner

    This is very inspiring! I love this, “I had nothing to lose, but an opportunity.” Time to take relish in the opportunity. My goal for the next 4 to 6 weeks is to work on my ebook and post on my blog. I have created content for my site 6 weeks in advance, so I can do this. I have automated my schedule to make sure I get things done around the house efficiently and still balance time with my four-year-old daughter. Thanks for sharing. Your transparency is always appreciated.

  • AL

    Great post Pat!

    It is truly inspiring to hear the rough times you had and the determination you persevered through to keep your faith alive.

    Best wishes with your many future online ventures! You INSPIRE us ALL!!!

    -AL

  • http://www.nginaotiende.blogspot.com Ngina Otiende

    Hi Pat!

    Great inspiration! Love it. I have made $1.29 in adsense – over several months! I remember my excitement when the first cents came in.

    I am about to begin selling my own products :) I believe that will make a difference too.

    I am encouraged by your story. It was not an overnight success . It inspires me to go on.

    Thanks for sharing this!

  • http://www.MyFirstMagicButton.com Cindy Siow

    Hi Pat,
    reading your humble beginnings is a great inspiration. I have been online for only 122 days and still working my way up.Have made a couple of sales and a couple of hundreds of dollars but still way below my target monthly income.
    Thanks for sharing
    http://myfirstmagicbutton.com/blog/?p=116 (my 122 days online)

  • http://energyambassador.wordpress.com Tuomas Vanhanen

    Hey Pat and greetings from Finland!

    I’ve been reading and watching some of your posts and I have to thank you for all the advice you have given. They have been helpful in both making my Facebook timeline and blog.

    The truth is, that I’m just starting my “career” in the online stuff, besides for normal social media action, and I find your content both helpful and inspiring.

    Cheers and all the best to you. I really mean it! It seems you have worked hard to get where you are now and that, for one, is something I appreciate. Learning by doing, I love it.

    -Tuomas

  • Patti

    Thanks again for such an inspirational post. It’s always great to hear another example of hard work and useful content turning into success!

  • http://www.websitetemplates.org/ Stacy Summers

    Hi!
    Your story so inspiring! Thank you a lot for sharing !

  • http://knsfinancial.com Khaleef Crumbley

    Pat, thanks so much for being so open with us. Every time I read one of your posts like this, you always inspire me to move forward with a part of my online business that had me intimidated!

    I wonder what you are going to push me to do once I re-read this post and your “If I Had To Start Over” post as well. I’ll be sure to let you know.

    By the way, I didn’t notice your name in the list of speakers for the Financial Blogger Conference this year…that was just a typo, right?

    • Pat

      Hey Khaleef – thanks for the kind words. Unfortunately, that is NOT a typo – I won’t be able to make it to FINCON this year. My wife is due with baby #2 around the same time so I definitely want to be around during that time – can’t take any chances since our first was born a month early.

      2013 though! I’m already looking forward to it :)

      Cheers!

      • http://ridingthetrain.com Jody Susan

        What a blessing! :)

  • http://www.seedingprofits.com wilson

    Pat,

    It is a very inspiring story from you.I have been following your blog ever since I found your blog in google. You are always humble despite of your current achievements and you are always delivering content that we want. You are one of the successful blogger that I have met so far and I aspire to become like you one day!

    I am still working towards my way in generating passive income on online marketing which some of the people have already done so. Good job! May you bring your online business to a higher level!

  • http://www.mychristiandevotionalblog.com Debra Torres

    Thanks Pat. Needed to hear this today. My blog is growing, but I still have no idea how to make money with it. AdSense didn’t work for me – no clicks! But maybe I’ll try some other things. Thanks for the ideas. And, thanks for reminding me that it doesn’t happen overnight.

  • http://newclientseachmonth.com [email protected]

    Pat,

    Thanks for all of the detailed information, I think it’s a huge motivator for everyone. It phenomenal what you have been able to do in such a short period of time. Our business is growing by providing a lot of value also, but we aren’t in the World of Flynn, yet! :-)

  • http://www.irinamilova.net Irina

    Hi Pat,
    I certainly think your story is very important for those who just start in Internet marketing, because it helps people realize that there is no majic button. It actually takes time to build your online income streams or business as is in normal business. I sincerely hope your story will help a lot of people break that vicious cycle of going and buying one product after another instead of focusing on doing something that is leading to their goal until they acheive it.

  • http://www.dansumnerblog.com Dan Sumner

    Hey Pat,

    Great story of how you progressed from working a respectable day job to the start of online income success.

    Hitting on the Leed exam eBook was an awesome idea and to get so many sales at that price is awesome.

    Thanks for sharing Pat

    Dan Sumner

  • http://www.catmoney.de/ Andreas

    Maybe my last comment was blocked!?
    so here it comes again and i hope it will be applied.
    —-

    Great Story Pat :-)

    Hoping i will get my business to the next level too.
    Wasn’t laid off but my former webbusiness (sending free text messages) doesn’t work as well as in the last years.

    So have to move on with own products :-)

    Best Regards Andreas

  • http://culturematters.com Chris Smit

    Hi Pat,

    Again an excellent story. Also thanks for the reality check: nobody (well, very few) earn money online just like that.
    It takes hard work.

    Chris

  • Sarah

    I love this story. I will also never forget my first online payment from Paypal. I nearly freaked out. Best feeling ever. Thanks for doing such a great job and keeping us all inspired Pat!!

  • http://www.affenblog.de Vladislav

    Hey Pat, thanks for your inspirational story! I think the feeling of getting paid when you go outside for a walk is amazing.

  • AB

    Great story. What I see different here is: – you did not start by analyzing, researching the keywords and niche market before starting the website/blog. This is a common advice on starting the internet business, and lot of time is to be spent on that research. What was great for you was the market you were in (LEED) is kinda niche so it turned out well. As it is said, follow your passion (or profession you are good at), and money will follow.

    All the best,

  • http://equimantosparaacademia.com Cleiton

    Hello Pat, I found your site is a few days and I have to thank you for such transparency in their articles. I confess I’m Brazil and has no site in Brazil compared with many of its reported data for free. Thank you Pat for sharing, and sorry for my English :)

  • http://www.adventuresininternetmarketing.net James Gladwell

    Brilliant stuff Pat. Thank you for sharing the full story of ‘the early days’.

    One thing I’ve realised recently (and this will almost certainly sound stupid) is that I really need to create my own products to sell online if I’m to truly have the income I want.

    When I first got started, I honestly thought that I could make enough from affiliate sales and advertising on my blog. Sure, I earn decent commissions from the few high quality products I promote, but a full-time living it ain’t, which is why I’m now focusing on giving as much value as possible that leads into a product and eventually a membership site.

    So, thanks for the inspiration and the kick in the ass at the same time!

    All the best,

    JG

  • http://www.webpagelottery.com Andre

    Your story is inspiring. But no many people can make $5 a day in the beginning.
    But everyone should try hard and don’t give up easily.

  • http://ridingthetrain.com Jody Susan

    Pat – this post was like watching a good movie. :) I even said, “awww” when it came to the part about selling your 2nd book.

    Thanks for the encouragement. I was smiling when you said you worked on the train. The 1st ebook I am writing is about riding the train – I think it is a great way to commute and travel without the hassle of the airport or the high cost of gas.

  • http://nurturedscills.net Sylvanus NWafor

    Wow! Pat. This is so touching and inspiring. God bless your soul

  • Lain Ehmann

    Okay, the whole story is fab, but…

    I NEVER THOUGHT OF CREATING A COUPON TO TEST MY PAYMENT PROCESS IN EJUNKIE!

    I feel like an idiot. But smarter than I was ten minutes ago. ;)

  • http://www.thoughtsandnews.com gekko

    Very nice story. It’s so nice to “build” a business like this from scratch. The fun part of this is that the sky is the limit. Thanks for sharing with us.

  • http://businessinvestorpro.com/ Business Investor Pro

    My first business was selling golf balls as a kid, i would find golf balls in the woods at this golf course then sell them to the golfers. I sold them at the prices of
    4 for 1$
    1 For 1$

    I use to make 20-40$ in about 2-4 hour period. As a kid this was great money

  • http://www.sexyfocusedambitious.com Lauryn Doll

    This was an awesome story.

    What I resonate with most, is that I’ve also had a lot of ups and downs in my journey. I’ve found creating products is a sustainable platform for me as well, especially when I’m dealing with hosting issues. (I use kindle though)

  • http://Imitationofchrist.webplus.net Tim

    Pat
    I read your ebook. Very informative!

    I did a version of my site listed above but had to bring it down as I just didn’t know enough. You site has really helped me think strategically about my e-projects. I also just finished “crush it!” which was very helpful.

    So now lim working on my site listed above (as part of a religious calling), and am working another site (niche, I guess) for profit.

    Thanks a lot for helping me get some clarity.

  • http://www.mediatechblog.org jerrywhyte

    THANKS MR. PAT
    YOU HAVE INSPIRED AND MOTIVATED ME AGAIN, I AM BEGINNING TO GET CLUE ON WHAT NEXT NICHE I AM TO DIVE INTO.

    YOU ROCK ALWAYS

  • Ita

    Thanks Pat!
    I love your story, and am impressed with the way you handled circumstances beyond your control. I found your site a couple weeks ago, and have been reading my way through it! So nice to find your story (after reading the whole niche site duel-I am a bit out of order, I guess!).

  • http://hangout-lifestyle.de Florian

    Pat, you should write an ebook about your story :-)

  • http://www.seventh-angel.net Tany

    Your story have truly inspired me, who is just starting out in internet marketing and learning. You have given me hope that making money online is in fact possible without resorting to the illegal methods that google frown upon.

    You need to write a hard copy book about your life from the start of your internet marketing life above to the journey in getting passive incomes with all the problems and solutions laid out. I would definitely buy your book because you’re one of the few genuine people out there who are transparent about your methods and not just one of those ‘gurus’ who talked big but delivered nothing.

  • http://www.rnacademy.com Phil Schafer

    Pat, again and again you impress me. I’ve been following you religiously for about a year and you never cease to amaze me. You work your tail off, your continually focused and the authenticity will make you successful beyond your wildest dreams. Thanks Pat for all you do and keep up the awesomeness. Looking forward to seeing your movie.

  • http://outrunmusic.com Trevor

    Thank you for reminding me that it takes time to create and build something valuable.

    I saw myself when you described your long learning curve, snatching time to learn and to explore what fascinated you.

    My time well spent has been learning how to record and mix my own songs, with a little web design time to market and monetize my music. I expected to write, learn to play, record, mix, and build a blog in 3 months…nearly 8 now, but I have learned so much!

    My site is up and growing and I am finding beta testers to exercise with my music mp3′s and help me with their feedback. My goal is to use my saxophone, electric guitars and drumming skills to help others increase running enjoyment and performance.

  • http://routinehabit.com/blog sharon thoms

    Hi Pat, love your site. You truely are one of the very best web guru’s on the net. If not the best. Almost as if by accident, yet still totally focused. I guess it comes with your take action attitude and your totally helpful and sharing nature. Your a very popular guy hey, proves that nice guys don’t always finish last.
    God Bless, Sharon.

  • http://www.seducingwithstyle.com/ Vince Lin

    I wonder what your posts would have been like if you were writing blog posts back then – if your mentality would have been different instead of “thinking back on what happened….”

    Being in the situation sometimes feels much more real and difficult than recalling it at a later point in life.

  • vickss

    hi pat, i have read your story thoroughly, what had been occured with you in 2008, i am on the same boat now dude. i am really depressed and i too want to do something like you. your story is really inspiring and i have learnt many things from you. i have realized that there is some possibility to make money on the internet. but i am confused becasue i do not know how and where to start. i would be grateful if you will give me sometips. till i will read your other posts. thanks

  • John Lee

    Hi Pat,

    A very inspiring story indeed… Your persistence and work ethic are definitely something to be applauded. There are no shortcuts to success like yours.
    Wishing for continued success your way!!

    Blessings,
    John

  • http://www.flowliving.com Christine

    Thanks for sharing your story with us. I love hearing how people first started their own businesses. Very inspiring and helpful for those of us on a similar journey!

  • http://mywomens.com Evgeny

    Now maybe it means making difficult earn

  • http://www.awesomebloggers.com/guest-blog/ Salah Messaoud

    Wow You have learnt the hard way, but is a very inspiring story, to be honest I built my first website and I am trying to make it work. I am learning from your experience. Thank you very much for sharing it with us.

  • Collins Mugodo

    Thanks Pat for the amazing story. This has actually opened my eyes. I had actually given up on everything but now I am more energized because have nothing to lose, but an opportunity.

  • Erwin Magbero

    Thanks to you Pat, I’m really inspired by your story.
    It was a great share to us.
    Thanks.

  • http://www.thediamondjewellerystore.com Mona

    This is inspiring for those of us who have started but are already months in with no income.

  • Razz

    As I was reading this part my heart started pumping harder LOL!

    “At 8:40am, I got an email from Paypal with the subject line “Notification of payment received”. My first sale!
    I immediately signed into my Paypal account and sure enough, $19.99 (minus a small paypal fee) was in my account.
    I could NOT believe it, and I literally had to go outside and walk around a little just to fathom exactly what had just happened.”\

    Like always live your work!

  • http://impredator.comeze.com Anes A Amrani

    wow I am really inspired from your story Pat thanks and keep going.

  • http://www.torque.ie/ Stephen Watson

    Hi Pat, this is ridiculous motiviation. I’ve made €7.00 ($10.00) in the past 21 days that my blog has been live without too much effort. I guess after reading this that it’s now time to scale! Cool write up!

  • http://nerdlosophy.com Jay

    This was truly inspiring. I’m only 19, and around the same time you began creating Green Exam Academy, I was experimenting with the blog world. Then I was a teenager, with nothing but an interest that soon turned into a hobby. Over the years, I have came and went on the WWW, each time hoping to become the web enthusiast that I secretly [though not really] desire to be. The fact that you simply tested theories over and over again, and continued to receive good outcomes, only motivates me more.

    I’m a college student and for job security reasons, I decided not to pursue a career in marketing and/or web+graphic design. However, like now, at this very moment I am online doing what I truly love: blogging and designing. Your story gives me hope, and serves as a constant reminder that I could earn as passive income, earn a degree, and still have a 9-5 if I so desire.

    Definitely about to delve into some online adventures of my own!

  • http://www.onlineincomestartup.com Dr.Spencer Jones

    Pat, It’s the first time that I am reading your story and it’s simply awesome. Have to say you were really lucky to have created a golden niche with your greenacademy website. Having so much success on the first try doesn’t always happen to everyone. I am looking forward to read the rest of the story… :)

    Dr.Spencer Jones

  • http://www.cg-space.com Bogdan

    Hi Pat.
    This article it’s the 2nd or 3rd i’ve read on your blog and it convinced me to write this first comment which prooves that you do a great job in writing/bloging etc.
    While i read this article, i just found myself in your story, i just saw myself struggling to make a living from my passion which it’s CGI(computer generated imagery – in industry of arch-viz, movies/adverts vfx, games, etc – mainly anything that’s related to 3D and CGI). I have found the web, just like you did and now after a year or maybe two years when i had no ideea what web is, i started to make my first bucks on the web with my first forum for digital artists ment to help them in the industry and throu-out their career as artists, just as you wanted to help people. (www.cg-space.com). And there are more plans to come…
    At the moment i read the part when you said you sold your first book, my skin just turned into chicken skin, knowing the feeling you were talking about. I got the same feeling when i made my first dollars and i still have it as i just started.
    In the end, you know it’s not about joy of making money but the joy of making something out of nothing, making something that people appreciate and reward you for.
    So, congrats, for your determination and joy you do the thing. God bless you and your fammily.
    Cheers! :)

  • Lucja

    I am so impressed by work and bravery! I am thinking of setting up online business and I need time to do everything from scratch! I will not give up ! I discovered your podcast yesterday and it’s super inspirational!!greetings from Barcelona/Warsaw

  • Deborah

    You are such an inspiration and so honest. I am glad I came across your works on the web!

  • Wellson

    Pat, I did enjoy and really inspired by your story. Thanks for sharing with us and thank you very much.

  • Pierre

    Pat,

    A comment from a French guy ;)
    Amazing work, amazing story and this is all told in such a natural and friendly way.

    Although I have (for now…) no “being on the payroll” issue (working in a company with no direct threat to get laid-off), I am considering moving to Smart Passive Income at some point, or at least starting a business from home…
    I need this flexibility and the ability to spend more time with my family.

    Not an easy decision to make when you have been working in conpanies for years…
    And even more complicated to find (and be sure of) the domain you want to address…
    What about family, kids who are studying and for whom shortage of Dad’s incomeis not an option…I don’t want to put them at risk…

    This is a difficult path to choose, but your writings and experience are so inspiring.

    Thanks for this work and for showing that one can be successful in business while remaining simple and honest ( I was amazed to see that you even described all your income details month by month ! Thanks for that)

    I wish you all the best !

    Pierre

  • http://sarmientoimmigration.com JP Sarmiento

    Been listening to your podcast for a while and read your story for the first time. Amazing story and very inspiring. Keep up the good work!

  • http://www.edmicah.com Ed Micah

    This is one of the best inspiring stories I’ve ever read online. I look forward to be like you. Ticked for opt-in in!

  • K M Ziaul Haque

    Pat,
    The content you wrote here really amazing for a newbie. You wrote everything clearly which have inspired me a lot to online earning.
    Thanks,
    Haque.

  • http://www.jaceyverdicchio.com Jacey

    Pat, thank you very much for your inspiring story. Your heart to genuinely help people comes through, and I’m sure that’s a big factor in your success. Thanks for being a great example!

  • Arnold Singson

    I was led to this site through a link from incomepress.com trying to learn more about FB Timeline. I’m a newbie and was really inspired by your detailed natural way of telling your story which really separates you from the rests. How i wish, i could do similar if not the same as you did. One thing i learned is, building good relationship is King to any online business..Thank you Pat for sharing your story that’ll eventually build good rapport..

  • Paulita

    I think your story is very inspiring, have been unemployed for couple of months now and funds is drying up very quickly. Your story is very encouraging, and inspire me to never stop looking for opportunities… Thanks for sharing…

  • http://swagsection.com/ Pierce

    what a fascinating background, you deserve all of the success. I respect the hustle.

  • manu

    Good.. very inspiring

    Tnx
    Can u plzz contact me..tough though
    Im a student,i need to know more abt it

  • Fred Owusu

    Wow Pat. Great story man..very long but you kept me engage. With the success you are having I was determine to find out how you became so successfully. I feel like we have similar stories but I have not reach my success yet. I have a question though? Are you still using the same back linking strategy since Google updated?

  • Gladys

    Wow. what a story. You have inspired me to continue to write my first e book. Now don’t get me wrong, Pat, this is very hard for me… but I believe I can do it and Iwill. Thanks again for your encouragement and I am glad for you and your family.

  • http://egyptian-food-recipes.com/ Sameh

    Thank you for sharing your story, Lots of things can be learned..

  • http://www.stehenpowell.net stephen powell

    Hi Pat:
    you have a great story and i have been looking at your blog and i think its great I have a website blog to at http://www.stehenpowell.net but due to my lack of education in school my spelling, and grammar isnt very good but have a lot of content to give to people but this is holding me back from writing posts do you think i should just go ahead and write posts anyway would people care if its spelt write or the commas or full stops are in the wrong place etc etc.I would like to know your views because this is holding me back all the time and i think your Facebook vids are great step by step working on them know. thanks for all your help i will be following you close.regards Steve ps if you find the time have a look at my blog i would like to know what you think!

  • http://artofroz.com/ Rositsa ‘roz’ Zaharieva

    What an inspiring story! Funny how you did well in terms of SEO without knowing anything about SEO whatsoever, while this is something I deal with on my full time job every day and actually struggle to implement when it comes to my painting and the related website (and blog). I should probably take it as studying for an exam or something, in order to finally sit down and do everything I know I need to do in order to kick start my painting career and giving my full time job up.
    While I was reading about how you came up with your ebook, I was thinking – could I eventually write myself one too? Why the heck not, right? And put it on sale, and see what happens..
    You really inspired me, you know! I am in my mid-twenties as well and although I love my full time job, I’d really really like to change my main focus.

    Thank you for the great story!

  • sachin

    Hey Patt !
    Your story is really an inspiring one ! I am currently in bad phase of my life and was just looking for online business opportunity and found your blog. I believe your story would truly inspire me to take the next step and move ahead in life. I deeply appreciate your work and I hope your small steps towards helping people would gonna create huge impact in the life of those using your tactics :)
    Thanks a ton mate !

  • Olli

    Thanks for sharing Pat!
    Cheers
    Olli

  • http://akiavintage.com/ arya

    Hey pat, your story inspiring me to never give up. Last year all of my sites was dropped by panda algoritm . That years is my last 80k usd /mo I have earn. This incident made ??me frustrated. now I just want to say thanks for your story that make me more confidence

  • http://www.businesswisdomacademy.com/ Luther D. Huddleston

    This is really refreshing topic about online business course. I am grateful to gain more knowledge about this topic. Nice post.

  • Nui

    Hi Pat,

    I’ve heard about you for a while but never read your blog till now. Very inspiring. Thank you so much for sharing. Please keep doing this.

    All the best for you and your family.
    Now, I’m off to read your next post. :)

  • http://www.solarenergyadvantagesreview.com Shane

    Hey Pat,

    So Awesome that you are sharing this information with us. My friend (who’s first name is Nate and lives here in Springville, UT), referred me to this site because I told him I just set up my first website/blog. I learned some stuff from Google Sniper 2.0 and put it to use. Now I’m interested in what you have to say. Anyway, thanks and can’t wait to read more!

    • http://www.solarenergyadvantagesreview.com Shane

      Oh, I forgot to mention that he said he knows you (which is why I put his name in the post) :-)

  • http://www.personalgrowthwithprosper.com Charles Prosper

    Pat,

    You are my hero. Period.

    Charles

  • http://Www.opticalfx.co.uk Adrian Salisbury

    Pat, I am so pleased to have stumbled across your blog some months ago. Like many I’m sure, I have been listening to dozens of podcasts, have hundreds of emails in an SEO folder waiting for me but your podcast is far and away my favourite. My photography takes me all round the UK and I spend hours driving. This used to be a burden but now I look forward to the long journeys so I can catch up on all your podcasts, and I have to say I haven’t skipped one of them yet, they’re all great.
    Last week one of your interviewees said about latching onto one mentor and I knew that was you. I am now cutting back many of the other sources and focussing on your site as I had gotten overwhelmed with all the information available.
    I am excited about where this is all taking me and thank you so much for inspiring me and helping me along the way.
    Your story has just given me the final push so here we go!
    Keep up the good work Mr Flynn ;-)

  • Chad

    Hi, Pat I was wandering who you might recommend or book for a complete idiots guide on how to get started with making a passive income. I tried to start a wordpress blog but found out I had no idea what I was doing only to give up. I have a good paying job that I hate and would to learn how to work for myself. But as you’ve heard many times you get Info. overload. So I just got lost. I want learn from step 1- as many steps as it takes to learn this biz. Not just half assing it. I want it bad Pat Please Help.

  • Matt McGivern

    Pat, What an amazing story. I am so glad you shared it. I have been brainstorming for some time about how to monetize my own blog. This post helped confirm some of my own suspicions and totally brought my strategy into focus. I’m hooked on this site!

  • http://mobilevertising.com/ Muhamad Abdul Hay

    Hi Pat. Thank you for sharing your internet business journey. Yup, content is definitely KING in your story. I am truly believing in internet business again after reading your post. Thanks & happy new year to you and family.

  • http://www.supremestore.net Snapback

    when I set myself up with Google Analytics to keep track and know for sure

  • KOP

    Dear Pat,
    Thanks for sharing, your story is inspiring me. :)
    Good luck to you.

  • http://www.webpromotionbyexpert.com yogesh

    Thanks for sharing such valuable and inspiration post. I read your post in one stop and it is superb.!!! Thanks`

  • http://www.pyramidpixels.com.au/ Radhika Shah

    Awesome! Love it!
    Your post made me smile so many times :)))

    I can relate to many things in there as I am in the process if setting up my own freelance graphic/web design business.

    I am going through similar ups and downs.

    Thanks so much for sharing :)

    • http://www.smartpassiveincome.com/ Pat Flynn

      Thanks Radhika! Keep push through those downs and enjoy all the ups that come along the way!

  • Batrepreneur

    That’s some inspiring sh*t mate!
    Love the way you keep things going.
    Go on like this!

    • http://www.smartpassiveincome.com/ Pat Flynn

      Cheers Batpreneur! :)

  • Swiss brands mojo

    That was an amazing story, i’m currently on a similar situation (lost my job) and i’m trying to get started in this world. although i didn’t used to enjoy my job as much as you did.

  • Frank Bodnar

    Pat you’ve definitely inspired me to start a blog for reals. And I also plan on launching a podcast in the near future once I get the hang of this blogging thing. Thanks for sharing your story and all the info through your site and podcast! Truly an inspiration, keep up the awesome work!

    • http://www.smartpassiveincome.com/ Pat Flynn

      Thanks Frank! Wishing you all the best – hopefully the blog here and my podcast will help you along your journey! For starting a podcast, definitely check out my free podcasting tutorial at: http://www.podcastingtutorial.com – totally free, no emails or opt-ins required. Cheers, and best of luck!

  • Shehbaaz

    Gr8 man….Pretty inspiring…Fully pumped by your story..

  • Sadia

    Hi Pat,

    This is really inspiring , I even dont know when and how I came to your site for the first time and I even joined your Fanpage at FB and also asked for little help sometime and admire the way you reply to the queries.

    Wish you Good Luck in 2014 too though it was a long journey and you are more stable & more successful.

    Regards
    Sadia B

  • JR John

    Probably the most inspiring story I’ve read in a LONG time. Not a typical “guru rags-to-riches” story (I hate those!).

    Encouraging stuff!

    Regards,
    JR John

  • http://nitishdhiman.com/ Nitish Dhiman

    Hi Pat,

    Great story I have ever read. You are an Inspiration for guys like me I am following you on all social sites and your blog as well. I want to raise a question as one other guy already raised my question in comments on this page. Check the comment of stephen powell. I would love to hear from you. I have started my own blog http://nitishdhiman.com/.

  • madcurls1

    Hi Pat,
    You’ve inspired me a great deal. I rarely read a full blog. I skim through blogs and only ready a few paragraphs, but your blog really speaks to me. I’m a survivor just like you. I used to earn $150,000 /yr as a recruiter. But back in 2010, I became very ill and had to start dialysis. Since then I’ve been on social security, but its not enough. You’ve inspired me to start blogging and I’m looking forward to learning as much as I can from you, thank you!!!

  • http://castilles.blogspot.com/ Beka Castille

    Thanks for sharing your story! I’m a young married 18-year-old living in the South with aspirations to earn a passive income through blogging, and I’m devouring all of the information you have on here! This is really inspiring to me.

  • Chris

    I love your content! Im curious what ebook you were selling for $19.99 years ago? Keep it up!

  • Lauren Cheney

    Very excited to hear your story! Thanks, Pat! I’m blogging my own financial freedom journey and I’m realizing the huge potential of all this and just excited to be in the process to go BIG!

  • Rahul Kamble

    Hi Pat
    Great inspirational story. Have a good luck

  • http://www.securitypatriot.com The Patriot

    Pat,

    I discovered your youtube video series on podcasting when I was working on a project for my church to record sermons to be posted online. I got very interested in recording sound for various reasons and started playing around with garage band. I have also been rolling the idea around of starting my own business for a while and took a few steps towards that goal only to run into a road block. My goal was to build a website and sell consulting services related to my profession. I began listening to your podcast not knowing what “smart passive income” was. I liked what I heard and started to realize I could maybe make money in a different way then I had intended. I have waited a long time to actually start doing anything. thanks to your podcast and blog, which are the only ones I have ever read or listened to, I have found the direction and motivation I needed to start something. I can’t thank you enough for helping me with the great material that you produce in your blog and podcast. I feel I owe you a great debt and perhaps one day will be able to shake your hand at the least. Thank you for what you’re doing and I look forward to delving further into your material.

  • Shipon Bhuyain

    I don’t know how can I express my pleasure after reading your article.I am a student just completing my 12 class .I also want to do something in online more than two years but I haven’t been able to set my mind .Today , however, I have idea that is about writing ,which things i know i should share it with others that you did, and i believe that it paves the way to start my journey on online.Moreover, I am learning about SEO,keyword research , google analytics and so forth.I know my English is not sufficient enough .I make mistakes usually but if you read my view I really grateful to you.

  • http://www.gauraw.com/ Kumar Gauraw

    Pat,
    I landed here through Jon Morrow’s reference and I am amazed with your story and your success. Your story is certainly a story of coincidence, opportunity, struggle, perseverance followed by success!
    I started my blog a couple of years ago for the sole purpose of creating my own brand image online to help my coaching and business development businesses.
    Then I started my own managed WordPress hosting company and then some consulting money started to come in. I know what your journey might have been like because I am going through the pain of growth and a lot of hard work is needed.

    Thank you for this inspiration and I know although I am late to the party, the value hasn’t diminished. You have me as your new subscriber! Thanks!

  • Olivier

    Super histoire, ça fait presque rêver !
    And yes, french people like me are happy to discover your blog.
    Really motivating.

    Olivier