Matt Forney
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Mailbag: There is No Easy Money

Anon1 writes in response to my article on the tiers of online hustling:

Hi Matt, found your blog by way of D & P and Frost’s work. I am a regular commenter at ROK and quite impressed with your posts.

I have a couple questions about your online hustling model (Tier 3 is brain farts of any and all info, Tier 2 is focused onto what readers love and Tier 1 is product)

If you had to do it all over again, would you have made your tier 3 and tier 2 blog with comments turned off (like Jack Donovan) or gone for the Roosh approach?

The benefits to my mind of comments atleast at the initial stage is instantaneous feedback. A person really has to fucking love or hate an article to send the blogger an email (hence why i replied, great article) and it would seem to my mind that when a man starts up, he has no credibility, atleast initially.
What do you think?

2) Secondly if i am correct in understanding, you’ve tried all the affiliate stuff and IM things, and found them all to be lacking.
Is there really no way of speeding up the grind?

Specifically having a one year time frame for the first tier3 then transitioning to T2 does built credibility but it doesn’t fit the timeline i’m needing to go for (3-6 months). Definitely no sob story but money’s tight and the quicker i can get things off the ground the better. Any advice?

I haven’t yet decided upon whether i’m going to write a manosphere blog or not. As D&P pointed out in his article,

“If you are broke, you cannot afford to do anything that does not make you money. You cannot afford to have friends. You cannot afford to watch the news. You cannot afford to play on Twitter. You cannot afford to do anything that does not make you money.”

I’m at that broke stage.

Anyway cheers for taking the time to read.

Your newest reader

I’ll respond to each point in turn.

1. Comments are sort of useful for a tier-3 blog and useless with a tier-2 blog.

I’m adamantly against blog comments, but when you’re starting out, you need as much feedback as you can get. If you monitor your comment section with a heavy hand (to keep out trolls and idiots), it can work out for you. Once you advance to the tier-2 stage, however, blog comments are worse than useless: they can actually derail you from your mission. When I was writing my tier-3 blog (before I’d learned of the tiered concept and was trying to turn it into a profitable enterprise), there were numerous articles and series I never got around to writing because I’d read something one of my readers left on a post and write a response to that. If I could do it all over again, I’d have ditched that blog after a year or so instead of trying to monetize it.

Once you’ve formulated an objective for your online writing, you don’t need constant feedback on it.

You should still take feedback on your tier-2 blog, but you shouldn’t let it get afield from the blog’s purpose. Closing off comments is the easiest way to do this, because as anon1 points out, the only people who will be motivated to email you will either be incredibly pissed off or will have something truly insightful and well thought out to say.

2. There is no easy money.

My timeframe for the transition from tier-3 to tier-2 (six months to a year) isn’t set in stone; you can conceivably make the jump sooner if you feel you’ve stumbled across something that you can monetize. But the reality of statistics is that you need as much data as possible for your experiment to be scientifically valid. This is why when pollsters conduct polls or scientists conduct studies, they try to gather as large a sample size as possible; if the sample is too small, outliers can skew the final outcome. If I were to start a study trying to prove whether American or Canadian women are sluttier, for example, any conclusions I drew would be more valid if I had a sample size of 500 women as opposed to, say, 50. Conversely, data from a blog that’s been around for six months to a year is more valuable and useful than data from a blog that’s been around for only half that time.

More importantly, the idea that you can get rich quick is laughable.

It takes time to build a blog audience, time to build credibility, and time for the checks to clear. For example, the “info product” I mentioned had earned me about $500 for the month of January? I only just got the check for it this week. Furthermore, the product I created isn’t sui generis; it’s based off of something I’ve been working on for nearly four years. Granted, I could have created the product a lot sooner, but it still would have taken a good deal of time for me to get to the monetization stage. You’re right that you’ll be better off if you can get going sooner, but you’re not going to be able to get more than beer money in a 3-6 month timeframe.

Read Next: The Three Tiers of Online Hustling