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I was going to write an article on misplaced modifiers this evening, but something SUPER-awesome happened on this blog and I got distracted with excitement.
Seriously. I definitely jumped up and down, at least twice.
Keep in mind, I’m just a 24 year old SAT tutor in Austin right now, so this event may seem minor in magnitude from where you’re sitting. But maybe not! In fact, in my wildest dreams it would even inspire some of you!
What happened tonight was the 2nd part of an awesome day on the eSAT Prep Tips.com blog. Let me tell about the morning first, because it was great too!
First – I got my first blog comment!
I got my first significant comment from a real, live person! I was at a great coffeehouse in Austin, “Spider House,” a nationally famous and well-known coffeehouse that’s got the best vibe in the world – and I love their queso :)
"Urgent Report" on SAT Test from Pro Tutor...
Yup, I was just checking my inbox on the free, charmingly-dodgy wireless connection when I found my first comment had appeared, via my first Squidoo lens! Her name is Meryl!!
Thanks Meryl, you made my morning rock! The rest of you readers should comment on my blog too using the comments field under the article! It makes my DAY to hear from you!
This was only the lead-in, though, to an even more fantastic event – the one that actually made me jump up and down.
Here’s what else happened:
Some mysterious stranger – not the first, and not the last – found my affiliate link for the SAT Unlocked e-Book and read about its potential benefits – including an 8-week money-back guarantee, before signing up online and purchasing the e-Book through my website and earning me a small commission as well.
This is the first time I’ve had a real, paying customer visit my SAT prep blog!
Editor’s note: I no longer promote SAT Unlocked, because I spent a year writing my own SAT prep books on the Writing and Math sections as well as creating a video course on winning college scholarships!
By the way: I will only – ever – offer purchases from this site that have a money-back guarantee. Just wanted to make that clear from DAY ONE! Well, actually, it’s day 3 of running ads, just barely.
My SAT prep blog journey so far:
Alright, let’s briefly backtrack on the eSATPrepTips history.
My site/WordPress blog at this point has been online about six weeks, since May, but the first couple of weeks were spent 95% of the time offline, in Maintenance mode. I decided to go online to “seed” things on a whim before spending the next two weeks writing a few articles a day – they just came pouring out.
I was so motivated to create something lasting, something unique (I feel like this could be my temporarily-thwarted desire to make music) – and that was enough motivation to build a foundation.
I picked my theme, wrote about 15 pages (I think I’ve only kept about 7 of them at this point). I managed to pump out about 12 posts (a few designed to draw traffic with well-researched keywords, but more with hard-core free SAT prep info) before my endurance gave out on that front.
Then I slowed down a bit, even losing focus and going almost a week without posting. Now I am stable at about 1 post a day, give-or-take a day off when I choose. I usually take a day off after days when I write two or more posts, and I schedule those posts to go off automatically in the morning of the next day.
This has built traffic consistently and I can just feel the “gravity” of this site increasing as I post. It’s difficult to explain but if you try out building your own website you’ll learn what I mean.
I have also commented on related educated blogs and Squidoo lenses with the intention of adding free helpful information to the internet, displaying expert status on the SAT, and building backlinks for eSATPrepTips.com. This can be sporadic but I try to leave about 10 comments twice a week. I do notice an uptick in my traffic each week that I do this, though it is small (maybe 3-5%?).
Writing a post currently seems to add about 4 to 8 new unique daily visitors although it can be higher if I specifically target my keywords and content to SAT Prep instead of just free-associating the way I am in this post.
Here’s so more stuff that happened – I sold my first SAT prep e-book online!
ANYWAY – I still haven’t gotten to the part of the day (evening, actually) that made me jump up and down a couple of times.
Someone bought a book through my site.
It’s the first e-commerce that’s passed through my blog. The feeling is unbelievable. All my realistic hopes about passive income in the future are coming together. It is possible to earn money on the internet, if you actually talk about something you really understand.
For me, right now, it is in-depth SAT prep tips and product reviews, and it matches up perfectly with my current part-time independent SAT tutoring.
When I feel this fruit/money tree has taken sufficient root, and I have produced enough free and valuable content, my advertising should provide me with a small, but significant, source of income to use for travel and music. Later I plan to potentially branch out to the ACT, or create my own SAT prep products. We’ll see! (edit: Be sure to visit the SAT bookstore, which I created in the time since originally writing this article!)
Why is this ONE FIRST SALE through my website so cool? Because if that anonymous purchaser is not satisfied with their book, they can return it for ALL of their money back within 8 weeks, even after reading it completely!
And if the purchaser of the SAT Unlocked e-Book isn’t satisfied, they get their money back. Morally speaking, I feel MUCH better about that full-refund policy. It’s definitely something I will offer, if and when I publish my own materials.
My goal isn’t to become a prep materials salesman – I only want to profit if I connect a student, parent, or educator with materials that are helpful to them.
Upcoming SAT prep stuff:
Anyway – misplaced modifiers, coming up tomorrow. A GREAT SAT grammar topic that’s one of my favorites to talk about because it often results in incredibly comical sentence constructions (I must have a British/Monty Python Sense of DRY humor to find grammar amusing! :))
And if you’re out there – leave a comment! I’ll love you forever, like Meryl! HINT! I JUST DROPPED A MISPLACED MODIFIER MISTAKE! HEYO!!!!
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