Looking Back at 2014 & Forward to 2015

Last Update: January 21, 2015

I was going to blog a bit about Vegas, but Eddy, Ian, and Vitaliy all beat me to the punch. This is the third time I've been invited to Vegas to attend the Wealthy Affiliate conference.

As always, I've come away with more ideas on how to grow my business and a confirmation that Wealthy Affiliate is the absolute best place for beginners to come to learn how to grow a business online. I have been recommending it since 2009 for a reason!

Instead of talking about the trip again, I want to take a look back at my 2014 and what I'm planning for 2015.

My 2014 Accomplishments

I now have content published on my site five days a week.

Take a look at your own posting schedule. How often are you posting? Once a week? Every other week? Once a month!? You're doing yourself, your website, and your readers a great disservice if you aren't publishing content often. I firmly believe that having content published to my site frequently is the number one contributor to my success.

I now publish content to my website five days a week. Every article is unique, engaging, and runs at least 750 words. High quality content has been my number one focus since starting my website in 2007. It's the reason why my site continues to rank very strongly for highly competitive keywords.

My wife now works from home full time!

You may have noticed the beautiful blonde in the other Vegas pictures. That's my wife! We've been married for two and a half years now. One of my long term life goals was to have Amanda working full-time from home with me as an Internet Marketer.

We developed a strategy before she quit her job and she has been hard at work since August of 2014. She's no longer going to work 60 hours at a job she hated and felt under appreciated. Now, she's working full-time on a project she loves and enjoys the same freedom and flexibility that I have as well.

(You can find Amanda's site at http://www.dealtrunk.com/ -- Feel free to check it out!)

I hit highs in terms of income and traffic.

What's being taught here at Wealthy Affiliate works. However, it's up to you to follow the training and commit to your business. They say "content is king" for a reason and judging by my growth in 2014, that mantra isn't going any where any time soon.

Seriously, plan out a posting schedule and START WRITING. The only variable in this equation is you! Finish reading this post then get to work!

I went back to Vegas.

Free flight, free hotel, free food, free gambling. What's not to like!?

Looking Forward to 2015

Travel, travel, travel.

Travel has been a driving factor of my efforts online since I started. I wanted a job where I had the freedom and flexibility to travel where and when I wanted. With Amanda working full time from home with me and the growth in my business, we have some big travel plans in the near future.

First was Vegas. The conference spanned from Monday to Thursday, but we were able to extend our trip from Sunday to Sunday. To all future attendees, 7 days in Vegas is dangerous. I do not recommend it if you enjoy having money in your wallet.

Up next is California. We'll be doing the coastal drive from San Francisco to Los Angeles over 4 days. From LA, we'll be spending a few weeks on Maui! After last year's polar vortex that froze the North East, I booked a trip to spend some time on Hawaii. My office will be a beach during the coldest month of the year. Can't beat that.

We also have plans to visit Lake Tahoe, Hilton Head Island, and a number of other shorter getaways in there. All thanks to the power of working from home.

This will be our office for most of the winter :)

I'll be going back to Vegas.

It wouldn't be a year at WA without a trip to Vegas. I do look forward to meeting a lot of you there next year! Can we get a few more girls on the trip? Listen, I love the guys we've met, but it's just been a bunch of dudes walking around Vegas together. We need some ladies to balance things out.

I need to optimize my existing content.

My site is big. Nearly 1,300 posts big. (Remember I had mentioned I publish new content on it often? I wasn't joking. It's that big of a deal.) It's gotten too big that a lot of my content has been neglected over the years. There are posts that are getting a lot of traffic, but they ultimately lead the reader nowhere. I'll be spending what looks like the better part of 2015 optimizing my existing content and coming up with better content strategies moving forward.

What are your plans for 2015?

I mentioned above that the only variable in this equation is you!

Make your plans today for the rest of the year. Remember, this is a business and you need to treat it as such! If you are expecting a full-time income, it requires a full-time effort. You can't half-ass your way to success. Commit to building your business and your income will grow as well.

Most importantly: content, content, content.

-Steve

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Recent messages
viyee Premium
Hi Steve, Thank you very much for your advice and tips. Great help and it is encouraging for me.
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Evelysh Premium
Hi Steve, now that we are in 2016 will you share with us your accomplishments for 2015 and goals for 2016?
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wherewithal Premium
I saw that same woman in the picture of you at the Texas football game.
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Beezo1122 Premium
Hey Steve, this info was very inspiring and educational. I am truly learning the steps to becoming successful.

~Bernard
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lindasea Premium
One day at a time and a good attitude will make the steps doable. You will accomplish much. Love that you saw the education and inspiration in Steve's post! ME TOO!

Linda
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SuPeters Premium
Hi Steve,
Have you always enjoyed writing? I would not say I am a bad writer, but it is definitely something I do not enjoy and is very time consuming. As I start writing for my website, I am assuming (hoping) I will improve with time, but I'm not sure I will ever enjoy it. Just wondering what your thoughts are on the ability for people with minimal writing talent to succeed in this business.
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CathyS Premium
Not Steve here - but not to worry. Just do a search (at the top of your WA screen) for "grammar" (as an example). You'll learn about https://app.grammarly.com/

There's lots of training here, just search for what you need using the search tool and you'll find it. If not, we are all here to help.
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SuPeters Premium
Hi Cathy,
Thanks for the advice. The thought of having to think of something different write about almost everyday along with actually having to write it is what scares me most. I will definitely look into the available training. Thanks again :)
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CathyS Premium
Don't worry ... it will come to you. As you progress through the training, you'll discover much. And along the way, you'll come up with idea after idea after idea. Just write them all down. :-)
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arthurcrando Premium
Hi Su,
My problem is the opposite. I am a writer and love to write all the time - it's the techie stuff I struggle with! Your writing will definitely improve with time and practice. I do believe that the quality of the writing in your site is important, but there are many things out there that will help you, and I also recommend Grammarly.
Also, you can get quality stuff written for you very cheaply on fiverr.com. Any specific problems - you are welcome to contact me - and you can check out my published books here - http://amzn.to/204dWYR
Best wishes.
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SuPeters Premium
@arthurcrando Thank you so much for responding to my concerns. I have already looked at Grammarly and it is nice to know there is a site out there like http://fiver.com if needed. Thanks again!!
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lindasea Premium
Its always fun to drop in now and again and read one of the success stories. Its so awesome you are able to travel a bit. Loved your office pic above.

Someday. Still struggling with having a schedule that keeps the posts flowing. I appreciate the reminders.

Linda
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MillyJ Premium
Hi Steve!
How do you come up with all the stuff to write about? I always think: I have to be unique and do research before I write anything down. How do you cope with that?

And indeed, it would be wonderful to be able to do something for yourself without needing appreciation from management etc. But I do see it as another job, one which I do need to dig into my creativity, which I still have to prove one of my strong points (I'm not sure of that yet). But at least I do not have to travel for work. Rather do that for fun as you do!

Milly
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Thank you for all this information
And I have all my plans for this year and years after.
The only thing I want is to get started
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kristoficova Premium
Hi Steve
I like your staight forward advise, you tell us what we need to know and I for one really appreciate the experience you share with all the new members at WA. My wife and I are working hard to learn as much as we can to move forward in the right direction. I look forward to your next email.
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mcmark64 Premium
Hi Steve,

This is very inspirational. I would also like to travel much more.

However, I am beginning to get a little confused about the various success stories you have shared. On your website you state that "I expect this one article alone will start making me over $6,000 EACH MONTH. That's a $72k annual salary from a 300 word article." Yet in this post you attribute your success to having 1,300 blog posts on your site. I am having a hard reconciling those two accounts. Can you help explain it a little more?

-- Mark
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IveTriedThat Premium
That article is 1 of the 1,300 posted on my site and responsible for a nice chunk of income.
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impressive . yet but fascinating . Any who Hey Steve hi &
How are you today Steve ?
How are things going ?

So listen I read the email you sent me
about how your work behind this WA helped
you start a new chapter in your life & how it's taken you to many places
in the world .

And no I've never been to Vegas .
but there are places i'm thinking of travelling to someday .

By the way don't worry about what it is you may think i'm not doing
i'm slowly slowly figuring out how this WA thing works thanks to both you & Kyle's support
And just so you know after doing a few readings & watching a few of the videos that show how this WA
thing works & how to get started . I think a few weeks i might be able to get started on what it is i might be able to do . just thought you should know .

Any who listen i have a question about this Swagbucks you're pointed me to try
how does it work exactly . if you don't mind my asking ?

think you can send me a link that point to a video of some kind
that can show me how this Swagbuck works . before my remaining free time finishes here on WA .
if it's not to much trouble ?

Oh & one mire question even if the remaining free time i have left here on WA finishes you think i might still be able to watch that video tutorial you uploaded for me to watch about to start & use this WA site thing ?
regards Daniel .
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This was an awesome read. Thank you for sharing! Very inspiring.
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wow Steve that is so encouraging.
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JamesJJr Premium
Always a pleasure Steve.. Wonderful post!
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There could be no better advice. Excellent advice and motivation. Thank you Steve!
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wow... thats a good advice working on it to catchup with you lol..
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mattmike Premium
Excellent advice, I'm going to do just what you advised. Thanks for the advice. Deanna
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Don't wait for me. I'll catch up with you on the way somewhere. Thanks for everything.
Ps. You can safe this somewhere. I'll remind you about it.
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TerryVibert1 Premium
Excellent advice and one to live for. Treat your IM as a real business and work at it for at least 8 hours/day for just 5 days /week. The rest of the time on the weekends spend time with family and friends.
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america2000 Premium
Man...you are amazing...good luck.
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SherriWilb Premium
Alot of good stuff here, THANK YOU, ALL OF YOU !1
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NemiraB Premium
You are an inspiration, as many members here! Thank you:)
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AllynBeekman Premium
All I can say is ... Wow!
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Brenda17 Premium
Still in the early stages and trying to attract traffic, thank you for sharing, it only shows that its possible to work from home.
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Toto1940 Premium
Steve, just read your blog and you have motivated me. I am a published author and I know my niche is inspirational books and other related things. As a matter of fact I had a book store on the web before but failed because of a lack of internet marketing skills. Thank God I have found this community. Will chat with you soon.
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lauracb Premium
Blessings, Steve. You have the touch of words! thank you.
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kelidevetter Premium
Love the post. Really starting to think about moving to premium!! I'm excited and yet scared...I really want to succeed at this. There is so much going on in this little brain of mine I would love to be able to share it with the world and earn an income from it.
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TheCatherine Premium
Scared of what? Do you have a fear of success or a fear of failure? Either way the answer is just do it! Take that leap of faith trust your instincts and go for it
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kelidevetter Premium
Thank you. You are right!!! :)
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TheCatherine Premium
What alternative do you have? To remain fearful to stay in your comfort zone do nothing! It's a straight choice
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JoeMag23 Premium
You definitely found the right place to express yourself. Plenty of good training and many people willing to help you without the fear of getting ripped off. Good Luck and God Bless.

Ever Forward,
Joe
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bmusic Premium
I highly recommend going premium, that really opens up the possibilities. You can try month by month. I wouldn't think of income right away, but more taking action on the assignments and having a niche that you're passionate about.
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bmusic Premium
Thank you, Steve. This is very inspiring. I made a goal to post often and I don't. And this isn't a 2014 or 2015 thing, it's something to do when you can, and that's create content on your blog. Our blogs are best when that happens. Otherwise, they offer really no reason for anyone to come back and if they do hoping there will be new content, if there is none, after awhile, they won't return. That's not what we want.
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JoeMag23 Premium
Great post Steve. I have bookmarked Amanda's site for my lady to get some idea's for her cutesy gift ideas site. She too is fed up with what she is doing now. I am full steam ahead now that I am part of WA, but she is still a little hesitant. Once she gets in to it more, I'm sure she will gain her own head of steam. With my help and WA's training, I'm sure we will both succeed. Thanks for the post.

Ever Forward,
Joe
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Beckron Premium
Thank you very much Steve. This is truly awesome :)
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Clarie Premium
Love this blog...engaging and honest. A conclusion I'm quickly comming to myself and am eager to really get my teeth into this. I do my yearly goals at the begining of every year and the WA program is well up there along with creating my own products. Up until your blog I've been in conflict as to which of these two should be my main job. Now I know. Thanks. : )
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Deezdz Premium
My sister and were recently in Vegas and then drove to CA. Visited Hollywood, Venice Beach and had a blast. I'm drooling over your 'winter office'...lol. Love your post, very inspiring. :)
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NWTDennis Premium
You'll love California ... don't forget the wine country up in Nape & Sonoma County. It's about an hours ride from SF and will include a beautiful drive through rolling hill vineyard country.
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rpenf Premium
Fantastic post really inspiring.
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Papi Premium
Fantastic news for you and your wife.
As you say Steve,all due to consistent quality work on your part.
This post should light a fire under many members here :)
Your successes are to be commended.
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Iceichi Premium
Hi, i think it's been some time since the last time we met ( online ). Great to hear from you again and thanks for sharing with us. I do believe in this content concept and as this moment are still learning to make consistent and quality post.

Anyway, do have a great and fun vacation. See you around.
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Lesmyb Premium
It's always great to hear success stories and have a challenge put out. This year I will be focusing on my niche site (buildingcraze.com) so I will not see you in Vegas just yet. But I will be there one day...
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wendyjane Premium
Steve, you are so awesome. And don't worry, I'll make it to Vegas next year to help restore the balance! Haha
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Christabelle Premium
Thank you for this incredible post! It is such wonderful confirmation! :)
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ATzortzis Premium
Very awesome accomplishments.Keep us alerted so we can move!!
WA has a untouchable coaching team
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tomtitty006 Premium
Hi Steve.Good to hear from you and your definitely living the high life.What is your website about again?
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montewolfe1 Premium
Hi Steve, there are songs about freedom and it sounds like you are singing the tune...good luck and good life.
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emerald860 Premium
Hi Steve. It's been great to follow your journey here and your success! Congratulations to you and your wife on achieving your dream! It's stories like these that we can all learn from! A content schedule is one of my goals this year. And yes, I hope we have more female representation at the next WA meeting!
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veronica.l Premium
Sounds like you had a blast Steve!!
So you are saying you are escaping PA for the winter :)
Enjoy your travels!!
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IveTriedThat Premium
Most definitely. I don't want to deal with another polar vortex in my life ever again.
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Shawn Martin Premium
Great post Steve. Enjoy your freedom!
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IveTriedThat Premium
Thanks Shawn!
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Kyle Premium
The travel part is the part that I think I still have to pinch myself when I realize that this is real life. A life that has no "books" to tell you how to live because living off of an income on the Internet is so new.

There is something to be said about working from anywhere in the world and I know we had this discussion in Las Vegas. There is nothing more motivating than sitting in a coffee shop or in the hotel room (and sometimes by the pool) when you are 'out of town' being able to operate your business in full force.

Was awesome hanging out with you and Amanda again this year Steve and I can't wait to do it all over again next year. We will work on getting a few more gals down there too!
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dj-drea Premium
agh! I want this SO bad!!!
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Clarie Premium
Encouraging : )
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jazminf Premium
Thank you for the motivational post Steve, I'm sure you're gonna see a lot more women in Vegas next year:)
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silah77 Premium
Thanks for giving us a boost in 2015. Steve thanks for allowing us to see your wife's site. Very well created and very inspiring also.
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bryonbrewer Premium
The coolest thing about all of this is that you handed me the same lifestyle. Apart from the Vegas part, I've been able to quit my job and travel too, and it all started with a trip to IveTriedThat in August 2012
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IveTriedThat Premium
The stars aligned. Our meeting was destiny.
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bryonbrewer Premium
It's amazing what fate will do to bring you a free steak dinner.
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gappleby Premium
Super post, Steve! Love the quote "You can't half-ass your way to success.". Darn, wish I had said that! :-).

No doubt about it..it's time to get serious and treat our business like one. I love the writing schedule idea. Truth is, if we wait til we're inspired to write, or feel like it, it won't happen very often (as in..never!).

I write sales copy and content copy for my own projects and for clients, and I can probaly count on one hand the number of times I've been motivated when I started writing. But once I do get sit down and start (hardest part)...THEN the juices start flowing and the inspiration comes.

Yep, treat your business like a business, and it will pay you like a business...a lot better than just a job!

Gordon Appleby
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ladyj4180 Premium
Thanks Steve. Great advice that I need to put in action. Great travel plans! Have fun!
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Liz1 Premium
Great post as usual, Steve! I say "as usual," because I read a training post of yours recently and was blown away. I also hope there will be some women in LV next year whether it's me or not!
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cookma54 Premium
Awesome! You're my hero! M
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Rick Jantz Premium
This was really good, Steve and thanks for sharing 2014 and plans for 2015. I think it's encouraging for all of us members to see how people like you progress in your business and even go back and tweak it. Loved your wife's site, BTW, very nice.
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IveTriedThat Premium
Thanks Rick! It was Amanda's ideas and we worked with a local design company to get the creative work done!
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nudge1969 Premium
Hey Steve, I've been checking out your website, I see why you're successful! Awesome job. I have a question for you. How do you create your images, like the ones on the WA affiliate page? And how are not clickable? Cheers
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IveTriedThat Premium
I use Photoshop for most of my images!
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TheCatherine Premium
Steve
There are many many talented women here and I hope Amanda ia not alone next year.
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IveTriedThat Premium
I hope so too! I think these posts have helped motivate a lot of people. I look forward to seeing who makes it next year :)
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glycogen Premium
Thanks Steve. You are an inspiration. Especially that palm tree photo! Glyn.
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IveTriedThat Premium
Cheers Glyn! Thanks for reading :) I'll be sure to post an update when we make it to Hawaii!
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pianobenjjam Premium
I like that you and your wife can work it together. I just might bring that up with my wife and see what she says :)
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IveTriedThat Premium
It's great honestly. A lot of people ask "aren't you sick of being around each other yet?" Well, no, that's why we got married! We like each other's company :)
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Shipwright Premium
Such in inspiring post Steve. I went yearly Premium recently and i am determined that this year i will make it in this business. I want to hit Vegas too !
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IveTriedThat Premium
You've got all the same resources I've had Tim. :)
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Brez Premium
I'm so happy for you and your wife's success. You are the reason I am here when I stumbled upon your site "I've tried that" and well tried that, WA I mean. And you were right I couldn't be happier that I joined. Thanks for steering me in the right direction, you are living proof WA works, if your willing to put in the work.
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IveTriedThat Premium
Work. That's all there is to it. No secrets. No hidden methods. I was willing to put in the hard work up front and that's the difference.
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Verina Premium
Thank you for share, Steve! I'm happy for you both!
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IveTriedThat Premium
Thanks Olga :)
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EddySalomon Premium
By the way, I love Amanda's website. Why isn't she collecting emails though? Although maybe she doesn't need to because of the plugin.
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IveTriedThat Premium
We are collecting emails! Through the giveaway plugin. We don't have a give away running at the moment, but we will likely announce the next one this week.
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EddySalomon Premium
Awww ok.
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EddySalomon Premium
Great post Steve! I hope everyone took notice of a few things.

1. Your posting schedule. People need to work their way up to that because it does have a huge impact. It's something I plan to step up this year!

2. Your lifestyle now and how you can travel anywhere and still make money.

3. How you've freed Amanda from the bondage of working for the man. No one understands the joy of being able to tell your wife, you don't have to work anymore. It's a priceless moment!

I know 2015 is going to be even a greater year for you and I know it will be for me because i plan to implement some of the great advice you've laid out here.

Finally I want to clear up that I'm not a thirsty perv that needs the WA ladies for our Vegas trip. LOL That said, I do want to see the ladies step up their game because I know they're just as good as us.

Damn you Steve! LOL
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IveTriedThat Premium
LOL whoops, I could see how that could come off wrong if you didn't attend the trip. I'll edit it now. Eddy is a happily married man with two lovely kids :)
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EddySalomon Premium
Nah. Leave it in there. I was just having fun. Lol
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KatieMac Premium
Well done wish you both every success for this year to, I now know I need to publish more I will be trying hard for Vegas next year as Sui says hopefully more woman next year lol
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Sui_generis Premium
GORGEOUS photo of your winter office. Glad you're able to make this happen. I'm thinking there will be more women next year. :-)
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IveTriedThat Premium
Thanks! I took that one on our honeymoon. I'll have an updated picture for everyone on our arrival :)
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nudge1969 Premium
Hi Steve. I had a similar question to dj-drea. There is a question on WA asking 'Why Not a Shopping Site'. Why not a shopping site
There are negative comments to this. Your wife's site is a shopping site with a few blogs. Confused now whether a shopping site is a good idea or not!
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IveTriedThat Premium
Her site is unique in that the main website isn't entirely our focus on promoting the website. It's a bit complicated but I would agree that a strict shopping site that doesn't focus on content would be a bad idea.
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1David Premium
This post give all Wealthy Affiliate members something
to look forward to.

Building a profitable online business and going on fabulous trips.
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dj-drea Premium
How does your wife get traffic to her website? it doesn't look like the kind of website that has written content.
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IveTriedThat Premium
Content marketing is one method. We do have a few paid promotions in the works and we're reaching out to a couple of different websites.
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dj-drea Premium
i see that she has a blog as well :)
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dj-drea Premium
It looks really awesome and professional, wishing her all the best!
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gmegs Premium
Thanks Steve!
... you are so right - going to MAKE MYSELF write more.
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gohealthy Premium
You sure know your direction. Thank you for your inspiring post, Steve. Appreciate so much !
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pvarga Premium
WOW...thanks for the vision. Steve!
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Freedomseekr Premium
Awesome to hear Steve! Very inspiring to hear and keep up the good work. Best wishes :) -Sherry
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TJ Books Premium
I'm happy for you, Steve! Keep at it! Endurance wins in this game. John
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