Saturday, July 28, 2007

Not Quite To Plan

Well, as it turns out the phone company I am with only does relocations between the hours of 8am and 5pm...and I called them up to relocate my phone line at, you guessed it, now I can't initiate the relocation until Monday morning, which could mean that I don't get internet at my new digs until the following Monday, August 6th, five whole days after the 30DC starts! It's not the end of the earth, of course...there are internet cafes that I can still keep up with the 30DC, and there's every possibility that the connection will come through a lot quicker than 7 days anyway. So now I have a bit more time to go on with what has been happening at the 30DC this past week.

For those who have just stumbled on this blog and don't know what the hell I'm talking about when I say the 30DC, it is my slack way of writing the Thirty Day Challenge. And what is the Thirty Day Challenge? Well, I'm glad you asked. The Thirty Day Challenge (30DC) is a project created by Ed Dale and his team of Internet Marketing misfits (I use 'misfits' in the most endearing way). It was, I believe, started in 2005 and has been running each year since then. This is my first 30DC so what I say about previous 30DCs is just my understanding of what went on and not necessarily the actual facts as they stand. Feel free to correct me if you know more about them.

The idea of the 30DC in the past was to create an online business from scratch and within 30 days have it make it's first $1. There was a small budget of around $150 that was allowed to be spent on getting the business running and getting traffic flowing. This was normally spent through PPC (Pay Per Click) advertising in Google, and I believe a prize was given to the person who first made a dollar on their business. The idea after that was of course to replicate what you had learned through the 30DC to make more money. This year, however, it's a little different.

The plan for this years 30DC is to create a business from scratch and have it make $10 by the end of the challenge. Also, this year there will be no budget on the table. Everything that is taught and actioned will be done completely free. No PPC on this one. It's all about creating traffic from natural SEO (Search Engine Optimization). Also, this year Ed has enlisted the help of Dan Raine, who started The Immediate Edge site. I can vouch that Dan knows his stuff, after being a member at the Immediate Edge for around 6 months (I had to defer my membership temporarily due to not having the time to put Dan's methods into action). He is a master of creating traffic to your site through natural means - no hype and no PPC!

So apparently there are now around 3000 people registered for the 30DC. That's incredible! The first 30DC started with 927 participants. 27 of those made their first $1 by the end of the 30 days, which isn't a bad start. Many of those first 30DC participants have gone on to do amazing things in Internet Marketing and business in general.

So Ed started things off last week with the announcement of the 30DC Pre-season, where he would go through a number of things to get everyone ready for when the challenge started. First off he talked to us about teams, and the value in creating one for the 30DC, to help brainstorm and motivate you through. It's not only about having the extra brain power to guide you through, but its making a start on networking with people, and building up those lines of communication. My team consists of 5 guys (myself included) ranging in experience from very little up to quite a bit, so everyone will be able to pitch in along the way. We'll all be working on our own separate projects, but using the team mentality if problems arise, or to help with ideas perhaps. And like I said, after the challenge is said and done, perhaps a friendship or lasting connection has resulted from all this.

After that Ed suggested we register to the sites and In a later video he explains a little about and it's uses. Since being shown I've spent many an hour browsing through the suggested sites and have found some amazing stuff. Some of just for fun, others an incredible insight into what is to come in the way of technology. I definitely recommend you head over to, set yourself up and account, check your preferences and start surfing. Be prepared to be amazed. Mind you, I also came across a gallery of kittens on one stumble, so it's not all gold (well, kittens may be gold to others I guess heh).

Ed then followed with a video going through the various add-ons one will need to install through Firefox (the Thirty Day Challenge Browser of choice) to get the most out of their 30DC experience, and he will go into more detail on using these as the challenge progresses. He did explain, though, the use of the Session Manager plug-in, and I've found it very useful in recalling my preferred websites each day.

His next video was about RSS (Really Simple Syndication), and it opened my eyes a lot to how to best go about capturing feeds. Ed suggests using Bloglines and so I signed up and have to admit I find it an incredibly simple system to use. These days, the feed subscription icon now appears in the browser address bar so it's a simple click of that and the feeds are automatically saved to my Bloglines account. This makes things so easy, especially for a newbie like me. One of the threads on the 30DC forum has a list of people who will be blogging their experiences during the 30DC, so I have subscribed to all the blogs listed there so far, which I also think will be a big help in understanding the processes along the way, and getting a different perspective. Now I just have to figure out where I'm going to find the time to read them all hehe.

Next Ed went through the right way of capturing his podcasts and videos through iTunes. Again, this has made things very simple for me. I almost don't even need to visit the 30DC blog page anymore, now that I have the blog text coming into my Bloglines account, and the audio and video coming into my iTunes. Ed has a very easy going way about him that makes learning this stuff super simple.

He followed the iTunes vids up with a closer examination of (be sure to watch Part 2 as well), and then how to maximise and personalise the forum to suit your needs (Watch Part 2 here).

And that's about it, up to date. A hell of a lot of information for one week, but clearly explained and simply delivered through video and audio that even a neophyte like me can work it all out. I'm really looking forward to getting started, and to posting my experiences along the way.

This WILL be my last post before the big move across the sea and interstate, so have a good weekend everyone and I'll see you on the other side!

Friday, July 27, 2007

Preseason Training

I found my way to the 30 Day Challenge this year the way many peeople probably would have - but having already known about Ed Dale and Dan Raine, and having an interest in the way they taught Internet Marketing.
I stumbled across Ed Dale late last year while doing research for some sort of work-from-home business that my wife could do while she was in the latter stages of her pregnancy. She had quit her job 6 weeks before the baby was due and my wage wasn't the grandest by any account, so we knew things were going to be a struggle, especially once the baby was born. We discussed buying at markets and selling on eBay, pyramid-type schemes like Herbalife, but nothing seemed to really set us on fire in terms of excitement at the prospect of selling. I continued to look at various opportunities online and came across Ed's Dominiche program. I'd actually just missed the cut off date to join by 2 days but signed up to receive his newsletter in the hope that when a new program opened up I'd beable to get in.

A couple of months later an email arrived from Ed telling me about this fantastic new site for learning the in's and out's of Internet Marketing, called The Immediate Edge. The price was within my budget at the time (the baby hadn't been born yet), so I joined up. While a member there I met alot of fantastic and helpful people, one being Caro who put me onto the previous years 30 Day Challenge blog. I'd also read through Dan Raine's own 15K Challenge and had an idea of what would be involved - basically a step-by-step instruction on the process of searching for and finding a profitable niche product and how to market it to make money. I figured I was sharp enough to be able to follow step-by-step instructions, so in part I've been waiting a few months now to be apart of this new 30 Day Challenge.

In the meantime I'd continued to learn what I could from Dan Raine's Immediate Edge program, but I was finding that with a full-time job, and now a newborn son, I was finding it incredibly hard to make time to take action. Also, because of that, I was paying a monthly subscription to this site but not able to get anything back for it. In the end something had to give and I'm sorry to say I had to drop out of the Immediate Edge program, at least for the time being. I do still thoroughly recommend you take a look over there, and take advantage of the 30 day, no questions asked, money back guarantee. There is some truly incredible content there and I plan to take full use of it once the move is complete and I'm back online.

So for now I've been going through the 30DC Preseason blog, installing the necessary software and add-ons as instructed by Ed. Watching his very easy-to-understand videos, listening to his podcasts, and scouring the 30DC Forums, learning and reading about what others have to say. Earlier on I joined a team with 4 other guys but as yet I've only heard back from two of them so at this point I'm not sure if the team is still good to go or not.

As I'll be wanting to have internet access as soon after I arrive at the new place as possible, I'm having to get my home internet connection disconnected today. It takes them 5-7 days to relocate the connection (not sure why it takes that long, maybe if anyone does they could fill me in). We're due to leave Melbourne on Wednesday, August 1st - the day the Challenge starts (although I dare say Ed will be going by US time so it will be starting on the 2nd Aussie time. That works perfectly for me, as we'll be taking the boat over Bass Strait to our new home in Devonport, Tasmania, and will be arriving early on August 2nd. With any luck my internet connection will have been transferred and I'll be straight into it.

I've been given quite a lucky opportunity lately. My wife and I always wanted to raise our son in a place with space for him to be a kid. In Melbourne it was unlikely that, with my 9 to 5 salary, we were ever going to be able to afford a place where he (our son) could do that - except if we moved perhaps further out of the city. I didn't like that idea because as it was I was away from home for 10 hours a day due to work and commuting, and I felt like I was missing out too much on my son's development. Neither my wife or I have close family here in Melbourne (my family is in South Australia, my wife's in Tasmania) so there was also the fact that we did not have readily available family support close by, just to be able to take a break once in a while (anyone with kids should know what I'm talking about). Well, luckily for me my Mother-In-Law is a very generous woman, and offered to let us live in her house for 1 year while she stayed with friends and travelled overseas. The best part of this was that she let us have the place rent-free! All we had to pay for were the rates on the property for the year - about $1500 for the whole year! That was an amazing gesture and one we simply couldn't afford to pass up. We decided early after that that my wife would therefore get a part-time job to start with, to pay for groceries and bills, while I focused my now free time on not only raising our son but also this Internet Marketing stuff that I had been getting so excited about, the long-term goal of which was to allow both my wife and I to work from home and buy a house in Tassie somewhere with plenty of space for our son to grow up (and his siblings as they came along). I actually think it may be more than a coincidence that the 30 Day challenge is due to start on the day we arrive at our new place, with our new lives ahead of us.

Then again, maybe not ;)

So anyway, as I mentioned earlier, I'll be offline for the next week (hopefully no longer) but once I'm back I'll post about how the move went and get raring to go with the thirty day challenge. Best of luck to everyone who is already involved, and to those who aren't - get into it!

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

30 Day Challenge

This is my first post for the 30 Day challenge. It is a small post, just to let people know that I'm on board and ready to go. In the next couple of days I'll really start the blogging...

Tomorrow is my last day of full-time, 9 to 5 employment! I'm moving the family interstate where I'll be focusing my time on Internet Marketing (and looking after my newborn son). I started looking into Internet Marketing at the end of last year but after my son was born the time I had to take action with it seriously diminished. Now I'll have no excuses and it's surely a sign that the 30 Day Challenge should be starting on the same day that we move. I'm really looking forward to sinking my teeth into this, and seeing what I can get out of it. I'm writing this blog partly so I'll remember what I actually did (as the mind starts to falter) but also in the hope that others might be helped by what I'll be going into. I haven't really blogged before, so it's a learning experience on so many levels. Happy for you to take the journey with me.