I’ll start off by saying I don’t know John Chow personally, nor have I ever met him or even communicated with him via email or any other means.
With that said, I’m writing this article because I wanted to explore what I do know about him, his website and the throngs of followers he’s amassed over the years. I also have to say that if it wasn’t for John Chow, I probably wouldn’t have done much with this website. However, take that statement with a grain of salt! I’m not here to promote his services or tout how great he is and blah blah blah.
What I am saying is that when I got into this whole blogging thing, I wasn’t sure what direction I was headed, so after doing some searches, I found his website, JohnChow.com to be rather helpful. He sort of inspired me with his little video about how great life was–being able to blog online and not have a day job–in which he could then take his daughter out for walks in the park with nobody around because they were “all at work”. Normally, I don’t buy into such claims because while I do understand it’s possible to live a comfortable life doing hardly any work (that’s subjective by the way), I understand that it usually takes a LOT of work to get there. Whether John Chow’s video is he reality or not is not the point. The point is that I knew it could be done and I wanted to get there…for real.
His site title says, “I Make Money Online By Telling Other People How To Make Money Online”. If you read that and you’re instantly brough back to the days (or late, late nights) when you used to listen to Don Lapre talk about how he made $50k a week by putting “tiny little ads” in newspapers from his “one-bedroom apartment”, then we’re on the same page!
We’ve all seen the late night infomercials touting all sorts of plans and ideas of how to make lots of money in short time and/or without much work, but have you ever really investigated these ideas? What are they really selling you? I mean, I could say to you that I have a super secret plan to make $20,000 a day and I’m only going to charge you $1000 for me to tell you the secret. You get all excited, pay me the money and then I tell you the secret is to move to Hollywood, become and actor and land yourself a sitcom making $20,000 per episode. But is that really a secret? More importantly, did your thousand dollars really help you at all?
Now I’m not calling John Chow a scam artist, but I am trying to illustrate one thing: to make money, you have to work hard. What’s interesting about how John Chow operates is that his website is setup to perform 3 main functions (in this order):
- Present a newsletter – No matter where you look on his site, you’ll find a place to sign up to his newsletter. In reality, what he’s doing is collecting email addresses. I’ve personally signed up for the newsletter once and instantly realized that everything being sent was talking about nothing more than how to make money online and the different ways to do it.
- Sell a product – He’s not selling any actual products, but rather a multitude of things like ebooks, money-making videos, guides, self-help tutorials and other related digital items at various times on his site.
- Keep you coming back – This is where the previous two functions come into play. The more you come back to see the latest offers, the more likely you are to purchase something and trust me, these offers are enticing!
The first thing you’ll notice about John Chow’s offers is that they are very similar to everyone else who offers an online product. This brings me to the one problem I have with his site; all these offers do is regurgitate the exact same content, tips and advice as every other site out there that promises you to make money online!
As an example, 90% of these “special” videos all claim you can make thousands of dollars a month by joining affiliate programs and purchasing Google AdWords to help drive traffic to some squeeze page that sells a product about how to sign up for affiliate programs and buy Google AdWords to help drive traffic…you can see where I’m going with this. It becomes a vicious circle.
By the way, the products you’re selling to people are aimed at affiliate/Internet marketers just like you, so all you’re really doing is flooding your own market with new competition! That’s like your local 7-Eleven only selling their products to other liquor stores who are then selling to more liquor stores and so on. In time, your city is flooded with too many sources where you can buy the exact same products. Any basic knowledge of economics would tell you that this setup will eventually collapse.
I like to think of these sites as nothing more than pyramid schemes poised to earn untold amounts of profit for the person/website at the top while the bottom support earns crumbs.
How to really make money online
Of course, you can make money online using all of the available tips and tricks on the Internet, including sites like JohnChow.com, but the reality is that you have to be good enough to beat out all the competition…or just get really lucky.
I’ve been able to make money online from my own network of websites because I provide fresh, original content and people recognize me for that. I don’t take one person’s program, put a spin on it and then mask it off as my own. I don’t partake in shady practices in regards to Google search rankings. I don’t accept payments as bribes from people wishing to be named in a blog post.
I’m not accusing anyone of doing these aforementioned practices, but we all know that some people do. My advice is that if you want to make money online today and a long time from now, stay focused on your vision, provide something valuable to the Internet and keep it real. You’d be surprised just how fast your website will start making money.
If along the way, you can add some extra income using affiliate marketing, then by all means, do it! All I’m saying is that you will not become a millionaire overnight and it takes hard work and dedication to run a profitable website.
So the next time you’re on a site like JohnChow.com, get as much free information as you can, but be weary of purchasing a money-making program.