SPI 025: More Online Business Success Stories from People Who Don’t Teach People How to Make Money Online – Part 2

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In this session of the Smart Passive Income Podcast, we continue what we started in SPI Session #24 and bring in 4 more fantastic and inspiring success stories from people who are making a living online and generating a passive income without having to teach others how to make money online.

As I mentioned before, many people think that the only way to really make a living online is to talk about making money online, but these interviews prove that you don’t need to do that.

This Session’s Success Stories Feature:

Jordan Cooper of FM Britain – Some of you might already know Jordan Cooper. He has a blog at NotAProBlog.com and you may have read his guest posts on Problogger or Copyblogger. What you probably didn’t know about Jordan (I didn’t!) is that he generates significant passive income from a website in a niche totally outside of the blogging world that involves a video game that I’m sure most of us in the United States have never heard of before. He’s a stand-up guy (and comedian!) who offers some golden advice in this interview.

Cara Faus of Health Home Happy Cara’s success story is definitely one to admire. She’s not making millions, but she’s changing several lives and is able to support her family while doing so. In this interview Cara shares how GAPS (Gut and Psychology Syndrome) and her daughter inspired her to create a membership site that is helping hundreds of people – primarily through her own grain free meal plans.

David Risley from PCMech.comI’m sure many of you know who David Risley is. His website at DavidRisley.com consistently provides some of the most useful blogging and make money online advice on the web.

“But Pat! I thought this session was about people who make money outside of that industry! What’s the deal?!”

The reason I included David in this series is because like myself, like Darren Rowse from Problogger.net, and like most of the other people I know who run successful websites that teach people how to blog and make money online – he first had success (and built proof) outside of this niche, and I recommend that anyone who wants to teach people how to make money online to do the same first.

David shares his journey from the beginning which eventually led him to his very profitable blog at PCMech.com, a technology-based website for normal people.

David being David, he shares some awesome advice for those of us who are just starting to get our feet wet online.

Cornelius Fichtner from Cornelius-Fichtner.com (among other things!) – I met Cornelius right when I was first starting to do business online. We are both members of the Internet Business Mastery Academy and I’ve been hooked on his story ever since. It’s been long overdue, but I’m really happy to have Cornelius on the SPI Podcast because he’s doing extremely well online. In the interview, he also shares a HUGE mistake that he made when he first started out that he cannot undo. Those of us doing business online, even if we have a business already, should definitely not miss what he says.

In each of these interviews, we talk about:

  • What they were all doing before they started their online businesses, and when and why they decided to go online.
  • Monetization techniques.
  • The stuggles they experienced while building their online businesses.
  • What they each love most about doing business online and earning a passive income.
  • And more…

A big thank you to all of the guests on today’s session for their stories and inspiration!

Oh, and just for fun, there’s a surprise guest appearance during this session – a 5th guest – someone who is a very very very special to me.

Right click here to download the MP3

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Enjoy the show!



Click Here to Download the Transcript (PDF)

  • Declan Carroll

    Looking forward to listening to this later, work can’t finish quick enough! 😀

    • http://www.iwouldcoach.com Dan @ I Would Coach

      Declan – that’s the beauty of an iPod and headphones. Put the headphone bud in one ear so you can hear the podcast and your co-workers at the same time!

  • http://reviews.davidleetong.com Dave Tong

    Thanks again Pat for the great episode :)

    The corporate branding thing really is a huge headache for many of us, especially bloggers who started a blog with their name in the ‘brand’ and URL, it takes a lot of effort and exposure to make a person a brand…


  • Rob Smith

    This is good news Pat!
    After session 24, I have been looking forward to hearing more of the wisdom in session 25.


  • http://www.projectmusecloud.com Ilpo Ryynänen

    Yeijjj a new podcast!

    I really look forward listening this one Pat. I need some inspiration now.


  • http://imblog.pl Simon

    For me, biggest lesson from this podcast is about micropayments membership sites are becoming more successful. I actually feel that Patt will lanuch one soon 😉

    P.S. Nice idea with bringing your son in 😀

  • http://thelatestarter.com/ Eden

    Loving your podcasts Pat, you have great ideas for interviews. Just what we wonder about and like to hear for inspiration! Cheers dude.

  • http://maketheapp.com/ Ramy Khuffash

    What was the HUGE mistake Cornelius Fichtner made?!!!!!!!! I have to listen to this asap!

  • http://www.seobyhand.co.uk Wes McDermott

    A really really smart idea from Jordan from the first interview. Football Manager here in the UK and also most of Europe is huge, just wish I’d have got into internet marketing back when I first started playing the game :(

    • http://notaproblog.com Jordan Cooper

      Thanks, Wes. If you think you’ve got some chops in Football Manager, you’re more than welcome to contribute to FM-Britain if you’d like! :-)

  • http://www.JDGamer.com Jeremiah

    Hey Pat,

    I’ve been waiting or this for a while now and it’s finally up! Great inspirational stuff there. I started a gaming blog and this podcast was great.

    The best part, in my opinion, is that tons of people are out there creating blogs, vlogs, etc WITHOUT the intention of making money. This makes sure that people are focusing on great content.

    If more people would do that: make a blog without the money-making goal, I think there would be more people making tons of money off of their GREAT content.

    Great podcast Pat. Thanks for putting the work in

  • http://www.commonsensemarketing.net Sarah Russell

    Great stuff, Pat – It’s always nice to hear about people who are succeeding in other ways besides pimping the same old “make money online” or “lose weight fast” stuff. Reminds me that there’s a whole big world out there full of opportunity if we’re just willing to take a chance :)

    Thanks for sharing!

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

    nice interviews Pat – more people indeed make money online in niches that have nothing to do with teaching others how to make money, and they make more of it too! but because they are not in the limelight (i.e. A list bloggers like yourself), most people never find out who they are and what they do. many simply like flying “under the radar”. thanks for the reminder to everyone that it can and is being done day in day out. there are countless more opportunities that have not been tapped. love the little one :)

  • http://www.smartpassiveincome.com Andrew Richardson

    Yes! I’ve been looking forward to the continuation of this series. I am currently trying to grow my blog that does not have to do with making money online so I’m really interested to see what other people are doing outside of that niche. Thanks for sharing Pat!

  • http://alphaefficiency.com Bojan

    Looking forward to this podcast, but it seems it’s being late to show up on iTunes.

    I hope it’s better than the last one, it wasn’t on your level of top notch content, but it’s more about the guests.

    • http://optima-lifestyle.com Cristina Ansbjerg

      I don’t agree with you, Bojan.
      I love these last two podcasts because they prove you can (and should) make money out of the making money online niche or the teaching how to blog one.
      Sometimes I think people are running out of ideas, everybody hits the same topics once and again.

      Thanks Pat for this information. Showing new ways for your readers proves, once againk that you have a brilliant business mind.


  • http://www.UnderstandITNow.com Tom

    Outstanding interviews Pat! Having my own tech site it was good to hear about PCMech.com. The common theme between all the entrepreneurs is that first they built their website traffic, listened to what the visitors wanted and then sold them a product they asked for. Seems simple enough but in a sea of how-to niche building information the message gets skewed. Thank you for showing SPI audience that their are alternatives niches that can produce passive income. I hope you continue providing us with these types of interviews. Keep up the good work Pat.

  • cal

    I would be very surprised if fmbritain makes money… this is a very poor demographic. this particular website got into a fair bit of trouble through basically selling an e-book about another companys product (sports interactive produce the game). in fact as far as im aware this ebook is now being given away for free.

    p.s. i dont blame way you for trying to make money from it given the time it takes to produce.

    • Pat

      Cal – did you listen to Jordan’s interview?

  • cal

    hi pat, yeah i listened to it but am a member of quite a few of these forums (i play fm) and thought fair enough if someone wants to buy it but was under the impression that they were forced not to sell the ebook coz of copyrigtht / legal issues… maybe jordan could tell us that as i dont know the full story.

    • Daniel

      The actual story was that they were not allowed to be an official affiliate of the game (which has no benefits anyway) but Sports Interactive decided not to bother with legal action so they continue to sell it.

      • cal

        oh right i see… didnt realise that… fair enough.

      • http://www.sparringmind.com Gregory C.

        That’s interesting, and probably something people should take note of in case they want to get into a market such as that, where they are selling a guide to another person’s IP.

  • http://seleema.com Personal Growth @ Seleema.com

    Thanks for the interviews Pat! They were all good, but I especially loved the Cornelius Fichtner interview. My personal blog has my name in it, but at the same time, I’m really not thinking about major monetization right now. I have some adsense up and that will do for now. It’s a self discovery blog, so I’ll see where it leads. This blog is a way for me to discover what it is that I really want to do and to hone my writing. I’m really not in a rush. Thanks again Pat sharing. A lot of takeaways!

    Be Your Best YOU!

    – Seleema

  • http://chrismentormereviews.com Joshua Zamora

    Truly amazing content! I love hearing success stories! I have not downloaded the app but is this available to hear throught the app?

    Joshua the ZamuraiBlogger

  • Aidil

    Awesome Pat! Was wowed by the first string of interviews… And now a second set?
    It’s going to be on my playlist for my 3 hour long journey later.

  • http://www.iblogplanet.com Ben

    I have a long flight back to California on Friday, so I’m going to be listening to both Part 1 (I missed it originally) and Part 2. Thanks Pat!

  • http://www.buteykohelp.com Trevor

    I’ve got several flights to do over the next few weeks, these will help pass the time, and to help me focus on my next steps with my niche site.

  • http://louiesison.com Louie Sison

    Hi Pat,

    Thanks for another inspiring post. I just downloaded the MP3 and I will listen to it on my way to work. I would love to have the same experience with the one’s you interviewed.

    All the best,
    Louie Sison

  • http://www.unlockthedoor.net Stuart

    Brilliant stuff Pat, as always!

    It’s always engaging to hear about other people’s success stories, for two reasons:
    – It gives me an injection of hope into my heart.
    – It makes me genuinely happy for the successful person. They’ve found what they’ve dreamed of.

    Interesting stuff now – I used to play Football Manager A LOT a couple of years ago, and I enjoy the works of Jordan Cooper. But I had no idea that the two were related so closely!

    It’s a small and amazing world :-)

  • http://www.sportmanagement.cc Remco

    Nice podcast again! I would have liked to have heard more of Cara….what are her online strategies, what systems do she use and recommend……that one was too short.
    Will you check in on them next year?

  • http://sybersquad.com Christopher Knopick

    Hi Pat,
    Great podcast! Maybe you could turn this into a once or twice a year thing (inspirational passive income business owner interviews).
    Also I was wondering why you call your podcast “Sessions” and not “Episodes”. Is it to stand out more or did you learn that from someone else?

    Keep up the great work.

    • Pat

      Thanks Christopher! I definitely plan on doing this more often – maybe every 25 sessions.

      And as far as sessions vs. episodes – it’s primarily to do something different , and plus I think “session of the Smart passive income podcast” just rolls off the tongue better.

      Fun fact, Jordan Cooper was the one who suggested, on Twitter when I asked my followers what I can use besides “episode”, to use the word “session” :)

  • Tipjar

    Hey Pat, great interviews! Loved the David Risley interview.

    Just a side question – I noticed on your posts you have a sidebar on the left with a FB like button, G +1 button, and Tweet button…what plugin/widget is that?

    • Pat

      It’s a wordpress plugin called “ShareBar” :)


    • http://sybersquad.com Christopher Knopick

      The sharebar plugin doesn’t show up on your homepage if you have a list of posts (like most do). This really threw me when I put it in and thought it didn’t work. Just wanted to save you the frustration.

  • Tipjar

    Also..just did some digging on Jordan Cooper’s claims…

    Some things aren’t adding up…he claims thousands of hits, 160,000 downloads, 5,000+ uniques a day, etc, etc…but his site: fm-britain.co.uk only shows an Alexa rank of 598,000, and according to Compete, he only receives anywhere from 500-3,000 uniques per MONTH, and doesn’t even rank in the top million on Compete. He doesn’t even rank in the top 10 on Google.co.uk for the keyword “Football Manager”. Even one of his top competing sites fmscout.com only receives about 3,000 uniques a month…so I’m not sure where he’s pulling these numbers from.

    Enlighten me? He did say in the interview that the game is only released once a year…so do you see spurts during that time of year or what?

    • Pat

      Alexa isn’t a good indicator of actual traffic. Also, compete.com tells me I get 37,547 uniques per month, when Clicky and Google Analytics both tell me I get over 100,000, which is more like the truth.

      I wouldn’t believe all the numbers you read from these websites. They try their best, but in my experience they are typically way off. URL Appraisal also tells me my site is only worth $4000 😛

      I’d be interested to hear from Jordan as well to confirm, but I just wanted to pop in here to show people that you can’t base everything off these numbers generated from other sites.

      Also, regarding the keyword “football manager”, I’m sure search engine traffic doesn’t only come from one keyword. In fact, 93% of the natural search engine traffic for SPI come from keywords other than Passive Income. If I wasn’t ranking #2 for the keyword, it would be significantly less.

      I bet you’re right that the site does spike at certain times of the year though.

      All the best!

      • http://www.mymultipleincomes.com Robert

        I’ve always said that Compete caters to advertisers, and as such, they have an incentive to show low traffic (which allows advertisers to make low offers).

    • http://notaproblog.com Jordan Cooper

      Pat pretty much has it spot on. Alexa & Compete are pretty inaccurate with traffic numbers, especially if you don’t have their “widget” on your site. I’ve always found it laughable that my personal blog has a higher Alexa ranking than FM-Britain even though it receives 1/500th of the traffic.

      Here’s a screenshot of my past month’s Google Analytics: http://imageshack.us/photo/my-images/844/fmbstats.jpg/ – and this is in a pretty “dead” time for the game. Plus these stats here don’t include our forum traffic at all. These numbers start rising to 5k a day or so around Oct/Nov, peaking at 8-10k a day on game release week, then slowly descending to 3-4k a day from Dec through May.

      The site you mention, FMScout actually does *much* better than us – averaging upwards of 10k uniques a day and 30k a day at peak times of the year. I’ve spoken to their owner/webmaster, have seen their stats and this is most definitely true

      And yes, we don’t rank too well for the basic “Football Manager” keyword, but that’s really way too competitive of a term to even go after with the official game site, major gaming magazines, online retailers, etc. with huge authority getting ranked highly naturally. Most of our search traffic comes from 3+ word searches & longtails that relate primarily to tactics (since that’s what we focus on). We typically rank #1 or #2 for “football manager tactics” and related phrases. In the past month, according to Google Analytics we’ve received 21,604 visits via search through 11,973 different keywords.

      I hope that sheds some light on things. I see no reason why I’d lie about stuff when it’s so easy to catch someone’s B.S. claims and so easy to prove that it’s true.

      • tipjar

        Hey guys,

        Thanks for clearing that up…usually compete is fairly accurate for my own sites, so I guess I jumped the gun on that one.

        Crazy how a site like that, which covers just ONE game can do so well. Goodluck.

  • http://www.mymultipleincomes.com Robert

    I love hearing how people outside the “Make Money Online” niche actually make money. There are so many interesting ways to do it!

  • Karen Miller

    OK… I have had the weirdest set of circumstances happen recently. 1st, I have been a Project Manager for 5 years and am a contractor for a very large company. 2nd, I started following your blog about 9 months ago,… thinking I need to have a back-up plan just in case my contract does not get renewed in this rocky economy. 3rd , As part of my back up plan I also decided to get my PMP certification and I have been listening to Cornelius’ podcasts as part of my study regimine for the past 5 months. 4th, As part of my back up plan I was thinking if Cornelius and Pat can do the professional development niche route, so can I , so 3 months ago I started working on my own study guide for the PMP (with a twist). 5th, I found out on Friday that my contract is not being renewed… my last day is September 30. 6th, today I listened to the only other podcast I listen to besides Cornelius’ and who is on it talking about how he is making a fantastic living ?!?!? Obviously GOD is trying to tell me something… Good thing for me I am not just listening, I am acting.

  • http://www.webbusinesstoolbox.com/blog/why-diversifying-is-damn-important/ Monja

    Great work as usually, Pat – love your articles and I´m also a big fan of your podcast sessions 😀 It is great to know that there are options in this business to make money from blogging which is not just from speaking about making money online. I think there are a lot of these blogs actually out there but they don’t say much about it – especially the really big providers, eg. Trivago.com or others – they advertise on TV, radio and more and never say a word about how they make money and it is not that obvious. Especially here in Germany affiliate marketing is not that famous so others might also wonder how they make money with these websites.

  • http://more-retirement-income.com/retirement-funds Emily

    Dang, I didn’t realize you’d started a podcast! Gonna have to start from show 1 and get caught up!

  • http://www.seobasicsandstrategies.com TomL

    Some good tips… the best thing about it was the variety of different things that they are doing.


  • http://altkommein.com Mahesh

    Hi Pat, little off-topic question, which plugin you use to convert podcast into PDF transcription ? I’m trying to find decent plugin or any method to do that conversion. I would like to know how you do that.


    • http://www.noosaholidayhomes.net.au David #inoosa

      Mahesh, I am pretty sure that Pat said in a previous podcast (session…) that he asks his VA (virtual assistant) to complete the transcripts of the podcasts.

  • http://www.carrepossed.com John Deen

    this sounds promising… everybody is looking for a way to make money online.

  • http://www.kreativne-resitve.si/home Igor

    Great podcast Pat, it is allready number 25, congratulations! I like that you do interviews with “ordinary” people too and not only with “Big shots” in the internet world. It is much more realistic and helps me to stay motivated in my projects, because I can relate to that. This time I also liked a special guest, your son! So nice! 😉 Keep it up!

  • Saki Ikas

    Hey Pat,

    At the end of your blogs, your have a nice Related posts, Retweet, Share and eBook Sign Up.

    Is that a plugin or customized plugin?


    • Pat

      Thanks Saki. Actually, it’s not a plugin – it’s hard coded into the single.php file in WordPress, unfortunately. All the best to you.

  • http://themanchesterplumber.com/ steven

    Excellent, I will download this onto the iPad tonight and give it a listen.


  • http://www.committedtoweightloss.com mark pinto

    Thanks pat great info i will listen again! i am rooting for Cara Faus really inspirational women!

  • http://www.workonlinelegit.com/ Work From Home Blogger

    I think people should really move away from thinking that blog on online money making are the only niche to earn income online. My friend and partner in online business has a blog on Health and Relationships and he is doing even better than me.

    I like telling people, even if you choose to talk about tooth-picks, you will be surprised that their is someone out their who is looking for such kind of info. You just need to take your time and research on niches that people are ignoring and you will make money online.

  • http://www.marylandstinkbugs.com Stink Bug Steve

    Pat….The Best Podcast yet….Awesome…I’m cooking and listening at the same time..Learning a great deal…and will probably replay this one…I’m a David R. fan..as well and I frequent his PC site…so cool really cool..

  • http://www.lvg.com.my Aidil

    Your son is adorable! :)

  • http://www.joedigitech.com Joe

    It’s great hearing these stories from people making money doing diverse business on the internet. Thanks Pat for putting them together.

  • http://alexiskenne.com Alex Blaken

    Iwill download and give it a trial straight away.

  • http://2earncash-online.blogspot.com Atul

    Great post Pat. I have seen many successful bloggers who have a very nice blog and audience and they earn a lot of money through it. But they do not teach how to make money to their readers. It is a really inspiring post.

  • http://productivitycoach.info Naima


    Excellent podcast as always. I took you with me on my weekly grocery run this week.

    Your special guest moved me to tears. I got my fair share of strange looks in the parking lot – there I was, loading groceries into the car, big smile on my face, and with tears rolling down my cheeks!

    You remain an inspiration.

  • http://www.3dollargigs.com meena

    Cool post. What would you recommend for our new site ‘www.3dollargigs.com’ to market it to the clients ?

  • http://apileofblog.com Glenn Dixon

    I could *not* find this web site! And I could not figure out why in the world this guy’s web site would have so little Mac content on it! I mean, after all, it had Mac in the site name………..or so I thought.

    PCMech.com – ok, that makes more sense lol

  • http://financiallyeliteblog.com Financial Freedom

    Downloading this as we speak. Great to see all these people making money outside the IM niche which is really saturated and hypey, which is why I love hanging on this site. It’s real ways of making money online in the passive sense and still holding on to your integrity.

    Dwight Anthony

  • http://tinyurl.com/commision-command Pollyand

    To reach online business success there are many things you will need to learn and eventually master. Some of these tasks you may be able to outsource or accomplish with automated software. However, you will still need to at least understand the basics of the tasks if you are going to successfully outsource or purchase and use the correct software.

  • deb

    Darn. The GUT site by Cara is gone. Hope she’s okay! I really loved that idea.

  • Roxana Smith

    The financial crisis has shattered many people’s belief in American dream. The majority of them don’t believe in the opportunity to achieve success, prosperity and upward mobility through hard work. Many people struggle to survive and they have no confidence in future. They aren’t sure they’ll be able to pay off their student loans and have savings for retirement. Such stories might be very inspiring for some of them. Also people might turn to online wageday advance if they have any money problems or want to get rid of their debts.