So I like the idea of doing a “Saturday Musings” post every Saturday. I tend to work on my Domaining business on Sunday’s so Saturday is really my one full day-off. That being said it also gives me a great chance to pull myself out of my day-to-day life and reflect on the week. I am someone who is constantly looking to learn more, to get the inside scoop on the latest trends. That’s why I read Domaining Blogs, Affiliate Marketing Blogs, Blogger Blogs, etc. I want to learn from everyone!
Over the last three years I’ve worked hard to develop a system that works, a strategy for monetizing my domains. I’ve learned a lot and I’m still learning but it is always satisfying to get paid every month for something I did one, two or three years ago! This week was all about scalability, how to continue to grow my business, while also working on the third edition of my book!
So what did I learn over the course of a the week?
- Continue to Focus on Building Tools – I’ve been building tools to automate parts of my business. No I’m not talking about any kind of parking platform, I mean research tools so that we can easily access data that is valuable to our business. I started building tools a few month a go thanks to a new developer I hired in India. The software was so useful that I’ve kept him on and added a second programmer. Now I have two projects going simultaneously! Finding good outsourced workers has always been a challenge for me but I’ve gotten better over the years – I’ll share my tips in a future post.
- Writing a Book always takes longer than I expect – I’m still working on the third edition of my book. I planned to launch it this Monday but keep adding new material. In the end it will be even better but most likely won’t launch until the week of Thanksgiving. This does mean that my 50%-off special is extended an additional week!
- Having Good People Is Necessary To Scale – I am fortunate enough to have a great development manager running this side of my business. This has always been something that I’ve found difficult to scale since managing teams in Asia does require a fair amount of time and coordination. I was only able to build 5-10 sites/month and had to turn-down many potential clients. Hiring Kevin has made all the difference in the world – we now have over ten active clients, Kevin has become a pro at managing the teams overseas as well as keeping a close eye on quality. All our content is written in the US and we now have a team of four skilled content-writers. All good people – could never have scaled like this without them!
- WarriorForum is Awesome – I spent a bit more time on WarriorForum this week and was really impressed. While there is plenty of junk to sift through there are some great threads on SEO, link-building and monetization. I’ve been picking through some of the best and contributing where I can as well. Learned something very interesting about Duplicate Content vs. Syndicated Content – I’ll be doing a whole post on it this week so stay-tuned!
- Don’t spent time building my Kayaking directory myself – I hired someone in the Philippines this week to send emails to prospective Kayaking stores to be added to my directory on Kayaking.org. So far the response has been really good and every store we communicate with helps us build our brand a bit more. I kept trying to set goals for myself, things like email 10 stores each day. After a month you know what happened? Nothing, I’m too busy running my business – not enough time to wear all the hats. Remember this is part-time too – I do have a VERY demanding full-time job!
- How to go through large amounts of email quickly – this week I either learned or invented a new trick. I guess it’s not really new but it is to me and it really helped-out this week. On Wednesday my inbox was at about 250 – all the spam was gone, these are real emails! I decided to try reviewing them sorting by the sender rather than the date received. I found this was MUCH more efficient for getting through emails, not sure all of the factors why I just know it’s the fastest I’ve ever gone through that many emails. Try it!
- Giving-away wine on live TV is fun – I gave-away a bottle of wine on MorganLinton.tv last night – it was actually really exciting! The prize went to whoever submitted the domain with the highest CPC. One person was ahead with a CPC of $17 and then beaten by someone at $20, who then was crushed by someone with $50. The clock kept ticking-by and nobody could beat a CPC of $50. Then I started the countdown, 10 – 9 – 8, and counted down to one…and then there came a domain. Just in time with literally one second to spare – and it had a CPC of $72! It was a lot of fun and congrats to the winner who is getting a bottle of wine compliments of me!
- The auction battle has begun – the auction space, which seemed to die-off during the middle of the year is now on fire. Boxcar, Bido, and Aftermarket are now duking it out and judging by this post on Domain Consultant today it looks like there are some bitter feelings, in his post DC says – “We longed worked with them and have a special place for that group but I was completely underwhelmed by the launch of Aftermarket, which was already on my ‘sh*t’ list for a few stunts pulled even before the launch.” (Aftermarket.com Has Work To Do, DomainConsultant.com). Since I myself don’t know enough about Boxcar and Aftermarket I don’t have much to share except it should be interesting to watch how this space develops.
- .US still ranks great – my .US sites are continuing to do really well in the search engines. It’s always fun to beat-out the exact-match .COM with a newly registered .US, something about that never gets old. I bought some great product and insurance-related .us names this week – you won’t hear anything more about them until they’re developed 🙂
- We need more positive vibes in the Domaining Industry – it feels like there has been a lot of negativity in the industry lately. It might be because sales are down or parking revenue is down. I think this year has seen more blog wars and forum wars than ever and I see newcomers in the industry get caught in the crossfire all the time. I’ve always wanted to learn from everyone and teach everyone what I know and what’s worked for me. We should all focus on learning from each other and helping to grow our industry.
Okay – that’s it, those are the Saturday musings that come to mind – I hope you’re all enjoying your weekend!