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AJWalton's 1-year InfoBarrel Anniversary and Year 2 Expectations

By Edited Nov 13, 2013 7 31

A Year in Review

 It's been 1 year since I started writing for IB: 875 articles, 1600+ forum posts, and a modest amount of money later I'd like to say that this website and it's community is absolutely amazing and I love being here. IB has provided me with a nice income stream I couldn't have created in the offline world.  It's been a wonderful learning experience, largely thanks to the forums here, and I never would have envisioned my first online, money making endeavor would be as successful as it has been.

Last year I created about 850 articles between September 6th and Feb 2nd (bookends of 2 vacations, the latter paid for with IB earnings) and made many great friends here.  Despite my persistent arm injury, I'm pleased to announce I'm coming out of retirement to crash the servers with new content submissions for the 2011-12 season.

IB is well positioned in the post-panda (Google) world to become the leading article publishing website.  I'm a huge fan of the guidelines and requirements that protect everybody's hard work.  While I'm not basing any projections on income rates going up, it's nice knowing the investments I have made are as protected as possible.

A Year of Learning (This is the tips section, so if you skip everything else, don't miss this!)

Keyword research is the most important aspect of having success writing online.  I consider examining the strength of your competition to be the single most important factor, as any article that doesn't get ranked highly isn't getting traffic and isn't earning even if your CTR is 100%.

People know far more than I do. Ask a ton of questions. Be borderline annoying in doing so. I'm constantly amazed how good the people here are at what they do and I strive for their level of excellence.

Always share what you've learned with others.  IB is successful largely because of the strong, helpful community.  It's also immensely rewarding to see someone else "get it" and achieve success.

Be brutally honest with yourself about strengths and weaknesses, and create a strategy that utilizes the strengths.  I'm a wizard with keywords, and hopeless at all things promotion.  I have a great understanding of on-page SEO (though I'm lazy with it most of the time), and hopeless at all things promotion.  I'm excellent at outsourcing and getting great work done for bargain prices while building strong relationships with my contractors.  And I'm absolutely, completely hopeless at all things promotion. My resulting strategy is therefore: a massive amount of articles that receive no promotion...

Some well-planned, well-researched niches won't pan out. It's not a big deal, move to the next one.

Keep doing more of what works.  I usually write articles in groups of 10 within any given niche.  But in some niches I have more than 50 articles.  There might be a reason for this...

Using work-rest cycles is critical.  I can't, for instance, publish 30 articles every day.  But I can publish 100 article a couple times a week.  Batching is also important: I save all my articles to draft. Then write titles and publish.


Team AJWalton 2011-2012 Season Goals

You may also know I love overdoing things (the "R" in RSI...).  Keeping in line with this, my goals are predictably not-the-least-bit-modest.

IB Articles: 2035 new, 3000 total (I currently have 90 articles unpublished from January, making my current total 965 and 30 charity)
HP Articles: 2989 new, 3000 total.  Using an incredible amount of Google Analytics data from my IB articles, I should have little problem choosing highly profitable niches in which to create content over at HP.  While I prefer things here, my assets are not diversified at all, a situation I'm going to rectify.
Niche Sites: 100 total.  In January I'm going to grab some VPS hosting and pound these out.  I like my odds of success given the amount of analytics data I have.
1 Authority Site: Currently in the works.  This is something special and the plan is in place, but I need either more resources in the form of monthly income, or to be in better physical shape to carry it out, so things will progress slowly for now.

Roughly 5000 articles is only 13-14 per day which is easy enough to outsource, and I hope to do it much more quickly.  For interest's sake, I tend to make whatever money I've invested back in about 100 days - or a 365% yearly ROI.  This figure improve slightly over time as it takes articles a while to rank.  So if you're looking to increase the number of articles you have I would definitely consider reinvesting your profits and see if it works for you!

This means I'm going to have to do more keyword research, as my list of 2700 won't cover all the new topics I need.  I'm actually looking forward to this immensely, because I love Market Samurai, numbers, and data (shameless affiliate link - I've saved 100s of hours with it and you should too).

My Earnings Shot-in-the-Dark

Last year I wrote an article about how to earn a 6-figure income solely through articles (http://www.infobarrel.com/Earning_a_Six-Digit_Income_Writing_for_InfoBarrel_-_A_365_Day_Plan_of_Action).  By next September, this is the amount I intend and expect to be making barring a Google catastrophy.  My income projections have been fairly accurate to date, except in December where I overestimated.

This requires a combination of quantity and quality: many articles each earning at a high rate.  But to earn the requisite $8333.33/month, I would only need to average $1.39 per article per month.  Many of the writers who write-for-money here do much better than that including chezfat, jcmayer777, and Travis and $1 per article per month seems like a standard benchmark that people meet.

I have no idea what I'll earn from the niche sites, and assuming $0.

The only real question is whether my body can meet the demand. I have they keyword data, article templates, outsourcing skills, and revenue to invest in order to be successful.  And really, even if I'm off by 50%, I won't be disappointed.


My ultimate goal with this project (beyond the articles to the niche sites etc.) is to build 1 school or library per month through Room to Read and travel to the locations in which it's happening. Financial freedom too, but I see financial freedom as a means to greater ends.  I have a selfish goal as well though: Go to athletic and medical specialists the world over until I find a way to fix my arm issues so I can play guitar again.  

Thanks for all the support thus far!

Here's to another great year.



Sep 6, 2011 6:09pm
Congratulations on your successes so far! I definitely encourage those who aim high and try to reach for better. Good luck with everything!
Sep 7, 2011 12:11am
thanks Sincerely! At least I have the aiming high part down, now it's time to execute
Sep 20, 2011 11:31am
Awesome, just awesome
Sep 6, 2011 7:34pm

Is this the article?
Sep 7, 2011 12:11am
Hey you found it! Thanks Ernie.
Sep 7, 2011 2:42pm
I had it bookmarked! lol
I wish you well on your goals. You set lofty goals and tend to achieve them. I like that a lot!
Sep 7, 2011 1:53am
It is very impressive everything you have done in such a short period of time.
Sep 20, 2011 12:27pm
thanks danmont :)
Sep 7, 2011 7:55am
Thanks for writing about your successful path created used by they IB platform. Motivational it is. It's amazing you accomplished all this within one year. Thumbs up and clicked the +1 button. When I click the +1 button I sent this article straight to my Stream so many of the people in my Circles will take the time to read it. Way to go.
Sep 20, 2011 12:28pm
Thanks for all your support HBI!
Sep 7, 2011 7:58am
Good Luck AJ, I'm sure you'll do fine.
Sep 20, 2011 12:28pm
Thanks Naazir!
Sep 7, 2011 10:43am
Great article. Keep going and providing the rest of us with encouragement!
Sep 20, 2011 12:29pm
& best to you too Catherine!
Sep 8, 2011 2:27pm
Awesome AJ. Going to pray hard for you to meet all your goals and dreams. Would enjoy hearing you play your guitar, once you have your arm well, you can make a video!! I'm sure everyone here would love it.
Sep 20, 2011 12:29pm
Thanks for all your support over the last year Lynsuz!
Sep 9, 2011 11:37am
Wow. That's a ton of content. Congrats and good luck.
Sep 20, 2011 12:30pm
Just playing my strengths, I find content production easy and everything else hard haha - thanks marcel!
Sep 10, 2011 4:52pm
Great attitude and determination to keep pushing forward. You set the bar high and inspire the rest of us. Your mindset to not give up and not accept defeat is a lesson we all can learn from not just in writing but in life. I wish you the very best in future successes.
Sep 20, 2011 12:30pm
Thanks for the encouragement BAfriend!
Sep 20, 2011 8:32pm
I loved this article. As a new writer I appreciate all of the advice that you provide in your articles. I like the fact that you plan to donate to Room to Read. I hope to use my earnings to benefit a charity as well. Good luck on your goals for next year.
Sep 20, 2011 9:10pm
Yeah I give them a portion of my earnings, but not enough to build an entire school yet. Best of luck to you Aurora!
Sep 21, 2011 2:52am
Your article was really inspiring. I am planning to create some children's charities from my earnings here. (And I thought my idea was so original.) This article helped me see my plan has the potential to become a reality. I just have to keep putting in the hard work. Best of luck with your 2nd Year and thank you for sharing.
Sep 21, 2011 1:51pm
Thanks Naomi :)

You may not be the only one with the idea, but that in no way diminishes the good you will do by making your plan a reality. All the best! (I stole "my" idea from Tim Ferriss)
Oct 1, 2011 12:14pm
I'm **really** new at IB and I really appreciate all the help you've given me so far. Sometimes I don't think I'll ever get the hang of it ... it's a whole new world and a whole new language! You've inspired me! Thanks.
Oct 1, 2011 2:59pm
No problem oxfordian! It's rather difficult getting started. Keep on going, you'll get it - you already do the writing thing well!
Oct 19, 2011 1:56pm
Great article, it gives me some more things to think about with this process. I appreciate your honest opinion about this.
Dec 27, 2011 9:53pm
Wow awesome read and very inspiring. I think I need to a) write my goals down
b) up my game a lot! Thanks.
May 29, 2012 2:14am
Kudos - love the way you think - BIG! And I really was glad to see you outline your bigger picture goal at the end of your article - nice work. Tipping my hat to ya, and wishing you all the best for your big plans!
Go for it! Cheers, Sharyn
Jul 10, 2013 2:17am
875 articles in 1 year is amazing! It is a shame I wasn't there at that time, you would have been a great source of inspiration.
Jul 10, 2013 7:59am
Thanks adragast! Best of luck to you with your writing
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