One word of advice, and something I intend to do once I have the money saved up, is to build or buy out property that can support apartments or townhomes. One tough mistake some people make is buying a pair of homes to rent out and they get a nice $2,000-$3,000 a month but that’s it. Buying a house is expensive and the rental prices keep lower income families from potentially coming to you with their money to rent. If you have an acre to work with (more or less is OK too) you should be talking to a contractor to build apartments or townhomes. You will make a little less per unit BUT your audience grows significantly because now you can have college students, single parents, older folks, etc. all able to afford your rental units AND instead of capturing one $1,000-$1,500 a month payments, you can probably charge $700 a month per unit (or more, depending on the market) and build maybe 3, 4, 5, 10 units for the price of a home or two and now you’re making something like $2,100-$10,000 a month. It all depends on what you have to invest but if you’ve got $250,000+ I’d highly suggest you talk to a bank/investor that can get you in touch with a good contractor to build on a property and get permits and take out a matching $250,000 loan (I’ve read that $500,000 is plenty to build a good amount of apartments to start) and you can fill up your apartments and make a killing every month. You’ll have more tenants to deal with but if you’re competitive with your pricing you won’t have a hard time keeping tenants or replacing them.
Blogging is still going to take work starting out. That path to $5,000 a month didn’t happen overnight but just like real estate development, it build up an asset that now creates constant cash flow whether I work or not. I get over 30,000 visitors a month from Google search rankings, rankings that will continue to send traffic even if I take a little time off.
If you’ve got a book you’re itching to write, you can still go with the traditional publishing route. (We published our first book using a traditional publisher.) Whether your book is fiction or non-fiction, a publisher can help get your book into print and onto shelves in both online and traditional book stores. This is still a good route, although it may take more work and be more expensive than some other options.
Link-building campaigns -- My SEO-centric pals might want to hit me for this, but frankly I've found that most traditional link-building is a royal waste of time. Don't submit your site to every free directory you can find. Don't waste time submitting news releases to all of the free press release distribution sites you can. Don't post short, garbage comments on other people's blogs just to get the link back. Don't engage in link exchanges. Don't get me wrong. There are ways you can increase links early on that I do recommend, but I suggest them far more for the exposure value. Those things would include linking to other blogs from your posts (the bloggers often know who's linking to them, and they might come to check out your post -- it's a good way to start networking with others in your niche). You could also comment on other blogs and include your link, but only do this if you have something substantive to add. Otherwise you just look like a schmuck. The absolute best way to build links to your blog however is to simply create great content that people deem worth linking to. Remember, it's not just about linkback quantity. It's about getting quality, relevant links back from sites who cater to your audience (who not only provide link juice, but direct traffic).
With that though, if we work smarter and not hard we can reap the benefits of someone else’s hard work and buy an already built online business that is earning passive income. Which is what I started to do and it worked for me. Sure I had to research and learn how to buy an online business and there is a slight bit of maintenance needed for each site but it too can be outsourced. Meaning if you really want to you can earn passive income and sit back on the beach. Actually right now as I type I am in Mexico, by the beach and surfing everyday. I don’t tell you this to brag, I tell you all this because you are right. Building a business, any business is hard! Buying one isn’t super easy either, but you can do it and you can earn passive income with very little work, you just need to work smarter and not hard.
Think and Grow Rich – This classic was first published in 1937 but is still regarded as one of the best business books of all time. Why? The author, Napoleon Hill interviewed 40 millionaires to understand what made them successful. He tries to take all the wisdom from these interviews and organize it for his readers in the form of 13 principles that he believes can help anyone become successful. It’s still relevant for everyone today.
“Let me remind you again that when you put a book out there, you are a published author in a space where you are an expert. Your book becomes the ultimate business card, not to mention a source of ongoing revenue. Did someone say “ongoing revenue?”. Who does not need to make some extra money on a regular basis? Realize that this book will take some work to complete once, but thereafter it exists forever – working to bring you royalty checks five, ten, twenty years from now. Money will be consistently flowing into your bank account. If you write a good book that provides real value, then you realistically have a revenue stream which will bring income for decades to come.”