I no longer count traditional publishing as passive income because after you’ve spent half a dozen years pitching agents, arguing with publishers, and having your heart broken repeatedly only to make about a dollar per book, it’s not really passive income. More like overdue income. The responsibility that traditionally published authors shoulder is much too high and the cut far too little to make this even a profitable, let alone passive, income option for most writers.
4. We do our own IT, website design and implementation, write all our own materials, do ongoing research to keep it fresh and develop new products and technologies, market, mail like madmen (our emailing subscriptions alone cost us $1,100 per month, but we’ve got a list of 15,000 after four years in the biz), and somehow manage to keep the dishes clean, food in the fridge, and love our 4 kids as much as we can.
This lesson of repackaging, proved transformational for my second information product all those years ago.  I took a treasure trove of writing and turned it into several multimedia forms, including audio and video.  I was then able to sell the course as a multimedia driven training program.  It allowed me to charge 4 times the price (of an already expensive ebook), and dramatically boost conversions.
This can be a little easier said than done, but if you have a large social media following, you can definitely earn money promoting a product or advertising for a company. You can even combine this with different marketing campaigns if you are an influencer and have your own blog (advertisement + affiliate income). This is how many bloggers make money! Again, it is not 100% passive but once set up correctly and then scaled, can be surprisingly lucrative.
Another way to add a course to your WordPress site is LearnDash. This full-fledged learning management system (LMS) offers tons of features for setting up any kind of online class you can imagine. Create certificates of completion for your students or run your class based on a point system. Offer multi-tier courses complete with topics, quizzes, and more. Leave comments on and approve submitted assignments. too.
There are places online that can help you find developers, such as websites offering freelancing services similar to Upwork. These developers are willing to haggle for the costs of development, and creating a simple mobile app that generates minimal amounts of money doesn’t have to be too expensive. I’ve seen examples of apps that do the simplest measurement conversions (kg to lbs) or apps that show you the nearest parking spot generate thousands of dollars in just a few months.
Investing in real estate: Investing in real estate offers more passive income cash potential - but more risk - than investing in stocks or bonds. You'll need substantial amounts of cash to invest in buying a home -- it usually takes 20% down to land a good home mortgage loan. But history shows that home prices usually rise over time, so buying home a for $200,000 and selling it for $250,000 over a five-year time period, for example, is a reasonable expectation when investing in real estate.
As for Mr. Tako’s idea of hiring writers above, it’s not bad. However, in my experience it isn’t great either. Managing writers can be as much work as managing the other aspects of the blog. They come and go and I found myself spending more of my time on tasks that I didn’t enjoy (hiring and interviewing). I also felt like I didn’t have the same connection with my readers.

Add the links on your blog posts without sounding salesy. I don’t just say buy this or that, I usually write about something useful that happens to mention a product or I write about something I’ve researched about and link the product to Amazon. For example, when it comes to a recipe (which I rarely do) I say “now put the mix in a 9in pan” – 9in pan is a link to Amazon. People probably don’t need one but some might click on the link to see what I use and that might generate some money if they buy something else.


I made guest posts on other blogs/college admission websites on topics like what makes a great application or how to write a great essay. I linked to my book, and get maybe 1 sale a month that I can attribute to these blogs. It’s not great for sales, but it did help my book get ranked higher on Google searches and I met and helped out some cool people, which is nice.
Michael Ellsberg is the author of The Education of Millionaires: It’s Not What You Think, and It’s Not Too Late, which is launching from Penguin/Portfolio in September. It’s a bootstrapper’s guide to investing in your own human capital at any age. Michael sends manifestos, recommendations, tips, and other exclusive content to his private email list, which you can join at www.ellsberg.com. Connect with him on Twitter @MichaelEllsberg and on Facebook.
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It comes with a cart system, promotional code support, multiple payment gateway support, a user purchase history, product bundles, variable pricing, customizable receipts, earnings charts, and more. There are a lot of features here so it’s definitely not passive but once your site is all set up, Easy Digital Downloads offers a convenient way to sell your digital products without much hassle or upkeep.
You not only have to create a fantastic little e-book with a kick ass cover or a DVD, etc. But, simultaneously, you have to be thinking of ways of marketing it and reaching your target market. In this case - just because you built it - doesn't mean that they will come! For example, Paul is able to talk about the Rocket Mass Heater DVD through these forums. He has an active audience already that he can market to. Do you currently have an active audience that you can market to or do you have to develop one for your information product? And what are some ways to develop one?
Investing in a business: Another good way to generate passive income is to invest in a business --even a small one -- in return for a percentage of the profits - just like Shark Tank, only smaller. Lending $10,000 to a local business that, for example, is working on a mobile app for Apple phones could lead to a passive income-generated share of the profits when that mobile app starts selling like hot cakes.
As a person that reads blogs I love it when people add affiliate links of the products they’re talking about because I don’t have to search for them. For example, when I’m deciding which crafts I’ll make with my kids it saves me a lot of time to click on the affiliate links of the products so you’re helping out your reader as well as making side income. See here how I link to products in crafts.

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.
Add the links on your blog posts without sounding salesy. I don’t just say buy this or that, I usually write about something useful that happens to mention a product or I write about something I’ve researched about and link the product to Amazon. For example, when it comes to a recipe (which I rarely do) I say “now put the mix in a 9in pan” – 9in pan is a link to Amazon. People probably don’t need one but some might click on the link to see what I use and that might generate some money if they buy something else.

Stock dividends: Some stocks, especially stocks from big corporate standouts, pay dividends to shareholders based on the number of shares they own, and the percentage of the stock price on the dividend date. For example, if a company pays out 3% on a stock that's trading at $100 per share, you'll earn $3 for every share of that stock you own. Add it up and that can be good take-home pay as a passive investment.
As for Mr. Tako’s idea of hiring writers above, it’s not bad. However, in my experience it isn’t great either. Managing writers can be as much work as managing the other aspects of the blog. They come and go and I found myself spending more of my time on tasks that I didn’t enjoy (hiring and interviewing). I also felt like I didn’t have the same connection with my readers.
Before you start working towards a passive income, you should have enough money saved up, that you can use for investments and costs. You’ll also need some money to fall back on. Residual income ideas sometimes don’t work, so you should keep spare money in case an idea doesn’t work out. You can eventually earn a passive income if you keep working hard at one or more ideas.
Michael Ellsberg is the author of The Education of Millionaires: It’s Not What You Think, and It’s Not Too Late, which is launching from Penguin/Portfolio in September. It’s a bootstrapper’s guide to investing in your own human capital at any age. Michael sends manifestos, recommendations, tips, and other exclusive content to his private email list, which you can join at www.ellsberg.com. Connect with him on Twitter @MichaelEllsberg and on Facebook.
Finally, a straight forward, honest blog post about earning a “passive income” online. Your time frame is dead-on, Jon, as I have been working online for about 7 to 8 years and just now feel like I am getting a handle on most of the skills required. The real truth is that most online bloggers or marketers have to master many, many skills before he or she can claim true success. Of course, that all depends upon how to you rank your success. If you’re a person who enjoys tackling new challenges, learning new skills, and has a knack for writing, then the online world is definitely the place for you. Just remember it takes a personality who is willing to persevere and who isn’t discouraged easily. That being said, it’s a heck of a lot of fun!
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.
Creating passive or residual income is the ultimate investment dream for many, and it can be achieved via real estate. In fact, savvy investors have been using real estate as a way to create residual income for decades. What exactly is residual income? Simply put, it is income that continues to be generated after the initial effort has been expended.
I love being a blogger. One of the main reasons is that I have been able to stop exchanging time for money with the passive income from my blogs. There are only so many hours in the day. There is only so much you can earn per week in most traditional jobs. Not a fan. I want to maximize my efforts. I want to make money passively even when I'm on vacation or taking a little break.
As a person that reads blogs I love it when people add affiliate links of the products they’re talking about because I don’t have to search for them. For example, when I’m deciding which crafts I’ll make with my kids it saves me a lot of time to click on the affiliate links of the products so you’re helping out your reader as well as making side income. See here how I link to products in crafts.
Investing in the stock market is a classic form of passive income. As you might know, with stock markets, there is some risk involved. But then again, virtually all residual income methods involve a level of risk, and you won’t find any idea that’s risk-free. In fact, stock marketing can be one of the least risky ways to earn money, if you invest smartly. The basic rules apply: Create a diverse portfolio, start with around $1,000, learn about the stock market, and create a back-up fund.
Wouldn’t it be nice to earn money while not working? That money is called residual, or recurring, income. It's what can happen after you put a lot of time, effort and sometimes money into a job to continue to get paid for the work months or years after it's done. (Salary jobs are part of linear income. This income is directly related to the number of hours you work. If you work 40 hours, you get paid for 40 hours of work.) Once you set up your business to earn residual income, you continue to make money while doing other things – maybe even starting a new business to generate more residual income!
One great way to generate a passive income is through affiliate marketing. Now, this does depend on the size of your list. Yes, size matters when it comes to your list. Especially if you're looking to make some serious money and do it on autopilot. But, list-building takes time. It doesn't happen overnight. And you need to add value to your list or you become obsolete.
You can start a blog with a free theme technically…you do this through WordPress after you install it with one click on Bluehost. This is an important distinction…..the free themes aren’t available through Bluehost, but rather WordPress itself. So you will sign up for webhosting with Bluehost, install WordPress, then search within WordPress for free themes.
Jitendra's talent, skill, and style make him one of the most qualified digital marketing gurus in India, and in my opinion, shortly in the world. I know Jitendra from DomainX event , he was very active there and I was really impressed by networking & business skills he have. I decided to work with him and he delivers his best at his work. I really like his style of working.
Blogging is a fantastic residual income stream (don't mistake "residual" for "passive" -- in most cases you'll continue to work as your blog, and its income, grows). I won't go so far as to say it's the best residual income stream for freelance writers (informational products like e-books are fantastic for earning more in shorter periods of time for example), but they are one of the more consistent options once you build some stable traffic. And stability is a good thing. You don't always get a lot of it when you work as a freelance writer.

I say that, because I remember really taking the lessons on research and how-to writing style to heart.  Implementing them saved me 100s of hours of wasted time…you know the kind of time where you spend 10 hours aimlessly searching the net for some nuggets of gold to inspire your writing on a certain topic and then 5 hours trying to write the first 2 paragraphs!

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