Jon, you always keep it real and I LOVE that about you and your writing! You are so right! There’s always an amount of work that goes into creating “passive income” or becoming a blogger who monetizing with services and courses. Thanks for being honest about how long it can take to truly master the required skills. Frankly, I’ve done my 4+ years of undergrad and grad school and what I’ve been learning in the last 2-3 years as I’ve dug deeper into improving my copywriting and blogging skills by taking classes with yourself and other trustworthy mentors is giving me the best foundation to help me build my freelancing business and ultimately step away from my 9-5. For me, it’s all about who I work for, under what conditions, when, and for how much, rather than a “no-work-at-all” lifestyle. That’s totally unrealistic. And I appreciate you, as a well respected “Guru” yourself, for saying so!
On the other hand, blogging income is somewhat passive. We’re in Hawaii this week and the blogging income should keep rolling in. I’ll check the site once in a while, but I’ll log just a few hours this week. One week off won’t make any difference in the income especially since I have the posts scheduled. One week is just too short to make a difference.

New post sponsorship -- Companies appreciated the blunt honesty on the blog, so they'd hire me to review their products or even their websites. They knew up front they wouldn't get glowing reviews, but instead critical and balanced looks at what they were doing well and where they could improve. Sponsors had absolutely no editorial control or impact whatsoever (the only ethical way to incorporate sponsored posts in my opinion).


People love talking about passive income online. But, everyone seems to have a different view on what’s passive. For me as a blogger, it means doing the work once and continuing to earn money on that work for months or years down the road with minimal upkeep. Sorry, folks. Passive income doesn’t mean getting paid for doing nothing ever. You've got to put in some effort.
The term “residual income” refers to the income that someone makes after their work has already been completed. An example of residual income is the earnings an author continues to make on a book after it has been published, when fans continue to purchase copies years later. Residual income is ideal because it is money that is being earned while doing nothing in the present moment to earn that money.
Use affiliate links every time you can and not just for the obvious stuff but for everything you mention that can be found on Amazon. Have a recipe that uses salt? Link to that (see this example). You can link to the actual name of the product or use type: “I like to use this salt” so people actually click on the link to see what it is. I wouldn’t use this method on all links but I do use it especially when I’m listing several items.
I thought I was done, but my sales went up actually, because I think people saw there were guides there and looked to see what else was there, and I was able to price lower because I’m just Pat and they’re a company with overhead. So my guide, which was $29.99 at that time, was outselling their other guide because their guide was in the $100 range, and I think people resonated with me and my story: Hey, I’m Pat, I’m just like you. I created the guide that I wished was available when I took the exam.
​Affiliate marketing is the practice of partnering with a company (becoming their affiliate) to receive a commission on a product. This method of generating income works the best for those with blogs and websites. Even then, it takes a long time to build up before it becomes passive. If you want to get started with affiliate marketing check out this great list of affiliate marketing programs.
That opportunity was always there, but I didn’t realize it until after four or five people said, “Pat, your stuff is so good, I would pay you for it.” That’s when I finally took action. I began reading as much as I could about doing business online and listening to podcasts and reaching out to people doing it already. I connected with them and created an ebook study guide, a digital book that could help my visitors pass the LEED exam.
Now that I know what it’s feels like to create something from nothing and get paid to pursue my passions? I’m creating new products left and right! Coming up next is a line of products for the moms in my community who are simply searching for the best way to earn money from home, whether it’s blogging or not. I can’t wait to unveil this product line on my blog…stay tuned! 🙂

I’m feeling inspired! I’ve been a PT for 19 years and I feel I have so much experience to offer but have been so intimated by starting a blog. I also subscribed to Michelle’s website but wasn’t sure it was for real. Is it for real? After reading this I feel like it’s time to take the plunge, I need to start a blog, I have so many ideas and even course ideas. I want to get away from the paperwork that plagues our healthcare system but not leave the field so the blog just might be the answer. I’ve been a landlord for 15 years now, great investment for sure, renters paid for the down payment of our house and should hopefully help pay for our kids college. I’d love to have one more! Thank you for the inspiration, wish me luck with my blogging!
Draft your first five posts. I like to have a few posts ready at launch time for a new blog. Do not write a generic "welcome to my blog" post to kick it off. Blah. What does that really offer? Nothing. Put up a temporary post if the site is up pre-launch if you want to build some anticipation, but if you're ready for launch now then get right down to business.
There are many ways to earn an income both online and offline. The main goal for most people is to earn a large enough income so they can accomplish and live the life that they choose on their terms. The unfortunate fact is, most people don't have the ability to live their lives on their own terms. They are a slave to their debts and they cannot break the cycle of living pay check to pay check.
This is another way to earn passive money from a website: sell affiliate products. Affiliate marketing is convenient and effective, because you don’t have to create or retail any products; you just need to get people to buy a product through your link, and you automatically earn a (small) share of the revenue. The most popular affiliate programs are Amazon Associates and Clickbank.
Setting up a Google AdSense website is a simple and effective way to earn a passive income stream. The way it works is that you first have to find low competition keywords in a niche. Use Long Tail Pro to find keywords with low competition that get at least 1,000 – 2,000 searches per month. Then, write long, useful, and SEO-optimized articles around those keywords. Lastly, promote your website on social media and build backlinks to it.
Insurance agents, authors, credit card processing professionals, multilevel marketing participants and actors are good examples of people who often receive monthly, quarterly, semiannual or annual residual income. For example, your job is to sell credit card processing services to retail merchants. A merchant signs a card-processing contract with your company. First, you will receive active income for making the sale. Every month thereafter, as long as the merchant stays with your company, you receive monthly residual payments based on the merchant's credit card sales volume. The more merchants you have, the higher your monthly residual income.

A very thoughtful list here. Another relevant book published this year is “Retirement Planning for Young Physicians” by Dr. Ralph Crew. It covers many of the topics discussed here from the perspective of a physician who has successfully saved and retired. The book adds a lot to these discussions with a focus on the importance of lifestyle choices, as well as a realistic (though sobering) view of likely future physician income trends and how to plan accordingly for retirement.
I still don’t consider it an area of expertise. When I started Smart Passive Income, that was the month I launched my ebook for the architecture site. I didn’t consider myself an expert. It was just something no one had taught me about. People were talking about online business but not about how to automate the process, so I just wanted to create a platform to give it all away. I still don’t know everything about it, but through trial and error, I’ve learned about the process and recorded it.

Use affiliate links every time you can and not just for the obvious stuff but for everything you mention that can be found on Amazon. Have a recipe that uses salt? Link to that (see this example). You can link to the actual name of the product or use type: “I like to use this salt” so people actually click on the link to see what it is. I wouldn’t use this method on all links but I do use it especially when I’m listing several items.
The trial court ruled in Karen’s favor and signed a proposed divorce decree that had been drafted up by Brad’s attorney. Neither party appealed the decree. After the divorce, however, Karen’s monthly income began to progressively decline. As a result, she filed a petition in July of 2007 alleging that Brad had violated the terms of the divorce decree. She also proposed an alternative argument that perhaps the divorce decree was too vague and needed to be clarified. The trial court found that the decree was, in fact, too vague, and ordered it to be clarified.
This is the basic mistake they've made: they've fallen prey to the belief that money and meaning are two totally separate things. They've chosen to make their money from something that feels completely meaningless to them (some business they care so little about, they just can't wait to get away from it and minimize their involvement as much as possible), which they hope will buy them the freedom to do something they actually care about.
FYI – If you’re already a blogger and want some solid ways to increase income from posts and products you already have, I highly recommend snagging a copy of Income Boost. It’s a quick read and will boil down some of my favorite income producing methods into exactly what you need to implement like right now for instant cash. You can use the coupon code “GET5” during checkout to receive $5 off the purchase price.

You add the email to your newsletter sequence, so at some point in the future every person who joins your email list will be notified of the review. This is where the first part of the passive income is generated. Long after the review is written and the email is first broadcast, new subscribers are still exposed to it, driving a consistent, albeit small stream of sales (this will vary of course based on the responsiveness of your list).


PS Joel also throws up the whole coaching idea in this book, and whilst it’s not at all passive I just wanted to mention it, because this is one of the ways to create a six-figure business for yourself if you are a true expert in an arena.  ie you can use passive income info products (that generate say $30,000 a year) to pull in the customers for your 1-1 or mastermind style coaching service (that brings in say $100,000+ a year).
×