Nothing to do with the fact that we share the same birthday, Louis Theroux is without a doubt my favourite journalist / documentary producer. His shows cover everything from brothels and the porn industry to profitable infomercial companies and even cities ravaged by drugs.
In a scene from one documentary, Louis and the Nazis, he’s asked over and over again whether he is Jewish while filming a family in their home. At one point the self-professed Nazi’s he is interviewing get pretty hostile, asking for the camera to be turned off as they want to ‘kick his ass’ for being a Jew. They convince themselves he’s Jewish without him answering the question.
I’ve embedded the clip below if you want to see (it’s only 3 minutes long).
The thing is, Louis isn’t Jewish. And I have so much respect for why he refused to answer that question. My point? People can very easily convince themselves of something to be true without any evidence, purely based on how they see the world.
Something similar – but far, far less hostile – happened to me a few years ago when someone blogged about me being a scammer for lying in one of my blog posts. I can’t remember the original title since it had my name in there which I asked to be removed, but the current title is:
“Why I think ViperChill is some sort of scam”. I wanted to steal that literary genius for today’s post.
I’m not going to link to it, since Google use backlinks to determine how high sites rank in their search results (or so I’ve heard, heh), but they rank 4th in Google for my site name. Their post basically called me out, saying I lied about some stats in one of my blog posts from a few years ago. I then went above and beyond for that person, giving them screenshots from my analytics account and even gave them a free niche idea that turned out to be a great shout, but it’s hard to accept you’re wrong when you’ve already put something out to the public. Heck, there’s even a comment there saying I’m a fraud because I live in an apartment and I’ve never worked with big clients (or been to South Africa).
I don’t live in an apartment, I live in a pretty nice house, but that’s pretty irrelevant to anything. I would happily live in one again, and tell you all about it if I did. As for the South Africa claim, you can decide that for yourself.
I’m not actually bringing that up to defend myself. You’re more than welcome to believe it; it really doesn’t make much difference to this post. I’m bringing it up because I’m using this post to follow-up on the original article that was called out.
It’s one of my favourite blog posts I’ve written and one that has possibly received the most thank you emails:
If you don’t have time to go through and read it all – it’s old, but still relevant – the core message is that I wrote (or really paid other people to write) about relevant news topics. The kind of things you would find on Google Trends, and received a ridiculous amount of search traffic for doing so. Though I no longer own that original site in question (and sold it not long after that blog post) I’ve still been relying on news events and current updates to make a lot of money over the last few years. It amazes me that more people aren’t taking advantage of it.
It’s not always easy to get information out of Google’s head of webspam Matt Cutts, but when he talks, it’s wise for webmasters to listen. This was especially the case when he mentioned via Twitter that Penguin 2.0 (a Google algorithm update) was going to be rolling out in a few weeks.
What most people do at this point is panic, stress that their rankings are going to drop, and generally prepare their SEO clients (where applicable) to expect some possible turbulence.
It turned out that Penguin 2.0 didn’t really do much at all and all of the spammy sites I’ve been highlighting on my email list recently still kept their top rankings for hugely popular search phrases (100,000+ exact monthly searches).
Being someone who has a habit of taking advantage of news events and current affairs, the first thing I did was instantly register Penguin2.com. It’s amazing with all of these SEO’s out there that nobody else thought to do it.
I say this is a mini case study because I didn’t really do anything else. I simply said to Diggy, “can we rank this before Penguin 2 rolls out” and surely enough, less than two weeks later, we were dominating all of the search results. Diggy by the way is my partner on Backlinks XXX where we’re helping hundreds of people get top rankings every single day.
Please note that I had / have nothing to do with the content on the site but I’ll probably revamp it in a week or two. I just love that one-page websites can still get rankings so easily.
Here’s a little screenshot from my
SEOMoz.com account for the rankings of some of the bigger keyphrases we targeted.
Though these phrases are bringing in a nice amount of traffic (and getting us a lot of targeted opt-ins from webmasters who want to learn about SEO), it’s actually the long-tail phrases which are pulling in many more visitors overall.
The numbers aren’t huge – we’re now up to 120 visitors per day purely from Google – but they’re very nice for the amount of work we (I mean Diggy) put into the site and we’re getting highly targeted people onto our email lists. Also, Penguin2.com already made sales for our SEO product, so it has more than paid for itself.
The current generation of gaming consoles have been around for a very long time now. Do you remember back when the XBox 360 was launched? Even if you don’t game, I’m sure you’ve heard about the console. It was launched in 2001; I was 12 years old, and still in middle school.
The Xbox 360 launched three years before I built my first website, but you can be sure if it launched this year, I would have been building a website for it.
Oh, what’s that….Xbox One? And Playstation 4? Coming in just a few months?
They’re going to be the leading games consoles for the next 10 years, so you can be sure there’s a lot of money to be made now and in the future. If you want a niche to pick and you’re willing to really dominate, now is the time to establish yourself as an authority.
I’m not going to do this for you, but just think about:
People are going to turn to Google and Facebook for answers to all of these questions.
“But Glen, there’s already established websites for gaming guides and console issues!”
There are 100,000+ SEO’s who were waiting for Penguin 2 that didn’t try to benefit from its announcement. Also, there’s literally no way to predict right now the kind of problems people are going to be having with these systems that you can be ranking highly for. Just get a website in place, ready for the onslaught of traffic this Christmas.
And since there are game guides and walkthroughs out there already, you know exactly who is going to be publishing them, how to make them look good, and how to improve on what is out there. The possibilities are endless.
…if they’re not taking advantage of popular topics and new products.
Penguin 2 was a great example, but I do have more. Just picture again how many tens of thousands of SEO’s knew about Matt Cutt’s announcement – most of them before me – but just a handful thought “hey, maybe I could get some traffic / subscribers / money” from that. It blows my mind.
Here’s a little analogy. You know when you get a new phone or car (or bike) and start to notice it everywhere? Your little Suzuki Swift or Toyota Camry seemed so rare before you purchased it, but now it’s like you’re noticing them in every car park and on every highway?
People have many different theories on why this happens, such as the Baader-Meinhof Phenomenon, but I’m not going to get all sciencey (that’s a word) on you. When you’re focused so much on IM and get into the habit of trying to profit from new events and industries, new industries keep coming to you all of the time.
They’re ideas and niches and industries that are probably coming to you as well, but I look at them in a totally different way: Something I can profit from. Whereas you look at another Toyota Camry and think “Oh, that’s my car”, I just see a Camry. We give each of them importance in the same way, but to a different topic.
A few days ago I heard about this product called Never Wet. As far as I can tell it’s a product that you can spray on clothes, shoes, bricks, your iPhone – pretty much anything – and it will literally repel water away from that item. As a funny side note, they seem to have a big competitor who has almost the exact same sales video called Ever Dry. Oh the originality.
Anyways, NeverWet has only came on sale recently, and not only are people looking for it, they’re looking for it in mass.
The reason I like to use Google Trends and not the Keyword Tool is because the Keyword tool is usually months behind what is happening in reality.
The spike for ‘buy neverwet’ may be much smaller, but it’s still big as this product is going viral across the web. I decided to Google the phrase to see who is taking advantage of the top rankings.
Right up there I see BuyNeverwet.com – a page with nothing but ads. You believe me now when I say how screwed up Google is? *Cough* Backlinks XXX.
The result I really want to focus on is Buy-Neverwet.com. A website with less than 10 pages that has been registered for less than a year and has links from only 4 different domains (according to Moz’s Open Site Explorer).
People ask me what affiliate networks I like to use, but my answer is always that I’ve used pretty much every big network, but I prefer to use the less popular ones which are focused around specific products (usually just a few). What this guy is doing for Buy-Neverwet is basically directing as much traffic as possible straight to Home Depot where they can buy the product.
And guess what Home Depot has? Luckily, a nice affiliate program so he makes money for every sale he sends their way. I’m sure he’s sending a lot, since he’s the only person in the top two results in Google with an actual website.
I sometimes browse the Daily Mail website now and then – not for their in-depth news coverage but their rehashing of Reddit – and found an article which sparked a little controversy. Cheryl Cole, a member of the girl group Girls Aloud, tweeted a picture of herself smoking an electronic shisha. As someone who smokes shisha about once per week, I’ve never heard of electronic shishas before (besides the ones that keep your coals heated) so did some searching.
It turns out that Electronic Shishas, or Eshishas as they’re best known, are a relatively new product and are being sold in London nightclubs for up to £15 each. For those of you who don’t know, Shisha is basically just flavoured smoke. I found these benefits posted on another website:
“They don’t contain tobacco, so there’s no tar, no carbon monoxide and none of the thousands of poisons found in traditional cigarettes. They don’t produce smoke, so there’s no passive inhaling, no nasty smell and in the UK, they’re not subject to laws about where you can use them.”
A quick look on Google Trends and you can see this thing is taking off like crazy:
As you can see, the searches are pretty much exclusive to the UK right now, but I have no doubt this product will be making its way across the oceans very soon.
Due to the fact that there’s no tobacco in the products, I’ve found on multiple sources that this would massively reduce any income tax if you were to import the product. A quick look on Alibaba and you can find these going for a ridiculously low fee.
That’s just 5% of what they’re selling for in London nightclubs. Even with an import fee or maybe a higher quality product, you’re looking at a high profit-margin for getting involved in this kind of business.
If you can see the kind of growth some industries are getting here that I’m sharing in public, hopefully you can imagine the kind of things I’m taking advantage of behind the scenes as well. Bitcoin, Litecoin, searches for books when a new movie comes out (The Great Gatsby), you name it.
I’m going to end this post with a little example that isn’t really to do with news related events, but I didn’t want to create an entirely new blog post just for this. Another thing I like to mess around with, besides the Google Trends tool, is the auto suggestions that Google bring up when you start typing something into the search box.
One of my favourite option for ideas is ‘benefits of‘. You can use this for so many phrases:
I won’t post all of the ones I like to run through as a bonus for those who are willing to put in a little work and be a little creative.
The reason I like this kind of phrase is because people are generally looking to be convinced as to why they should do something. In the example above that might be learning another language, eating a vegan diet and so on. Once you’ve hooked them with the positives, you can then be the authority that takes them down the road to achieving or doing that specific thing.
You have to understand there’s a fine line for me when blogging where I can give you specific niches and give you ideas to use your own imagination. As soon as I mention a niche it’s pretty much useless – at least when it comes to a specific keyphrase – because thousands of people are reading exactly what you are. What I really want to do though is give you a shovel and show you where to dig, and then leave it up to you how long and how far you’re going to use that tool.
Is knowing that when you come across an industry you’re interested in, you have the skills to rank quickly in Google (even for competitive terms) and start getting traffic to your creation. As you probably know, two weeks ago we announced the public launch of Backlinks XXX and we’ve been helping people every single day do exactly that. The feedback has been incredible. We have so many more testimonials to add on our sales page but I think we’re kind of at the point where it would be a bit obnoxious if we kept adding them.
I will add one here though that I loved, simply because he’s using what he learned to make a business out of it as well.
It’s not just a set-it-and-forget it product either. We’ve already added two big things since launch (a podcast and webinar) and answer all relevant questions personally via email if you’re having any issues. You can check it out here if you haven’t already.
Thanks for all of you who are on board already, and even if you’re not, I hope you enjoyed this blog post! Please, please be taking advantage of this…