John Chow caught my eye a few months ago when he started announcing his monthly earnings off of his blog. His February 2007 blogging income exceeded $7,000, with revenue coming from such sites as ReviewMe, Adsense, and Text-Link-Ads. His success has brought him a great deal of subscribers, myself included. I began watching how his blog, which is really more a personal musings site, gained him credibility and a real following (his February earnings post has 258 comments).
The interesting thing is that John Chow is not just a “blogger.” He’s a clever Internet Marketer, and he’s using that to his fullest advantage while his subscriber numbers are large and continuously growing.
Take, for example, his “Review My Blog” series. He introduced the series in December of 2006, encouraging bloggers to write and offering reciprocal links to reviews (as an added incentive, the best review writer gets a MiniTV USB). So far, there are 37 batches of reviews, each with 10 reviews (will this post make batch 38? I’m not quite writing for the review!)
What has that done for John? When he started the “Review My Blog” series, he was ranked 1,529 on Technorati. Now? Well, Technorati seems to have removed the rankings, but he broke 1,000 shortly after his series announcement.
A few days ago, John announced the Evil Blog Contest. The goal? Link to John’s blog with the phrase “make money online” and link to the post’s sponsor, 1234Pens.com with the anchor text “promotional pens.” Then, tell John you’ve entered and win a chance to score a nice Nintendo Wii.
Unsuspecting bloggers will surely participate in John’s contest, not realizing that his intentions are exactly that of clever (deceptive?) Internet Marketing. John understands the fine art of link building, and this will, without a doubt, promote both him and the pen company. All that link anchor text coming from a variety of different sites will rank him quite high for “make money online” in the SERPs (search engine results pages), and 1234Pens.com will rank higher in the SERPs for “promotional pens.” Right now, neither is on page 1 in Google (although according to a search I just performed with a highly recommended SEO analysis tool, it appears that 1234Pens is doing well as reported from other Google data centers — where it sits at position #8 — and on other search engines). John’s site is on page 2 in position #13, but I’ll bet he covets Darren Rowse’s #4 position for the same search term.
John’s tactics are slick, questioningly cunning, and it’s gaining him more credibility and a ton of revenue, which is doing him and his affiliates a lot of good. For the price of a Wii, the business that John and anyone who forges partnerships with him will get will have much more value than the Wii’s retail price. I’d be surprised if his March revenue doesn’t top $10,000.