Welcome to the Hall of Fame – Interviews session again.
This time, I am going to have the very famous internet marketer and SEO expert Zac Johnson, he is the one who tapped the online marketing in so much early days when we couldn’t even think of doing so.
He started working online about 20 years ago, the time when Google didn’t exist. He is someone who has seen internet changing and growing with every day.
Zac is the master of internet world, SEO and building traffic. He not just has gathered knowledge and wealth but build companies based on internet. We tried to get some pearls out of him and the best part is – he is very much open to share his knowledge which is not something everyone is willing to do.
So, here we go with the interview with Zac, I hope you would enjoy this:
1. First of all, please share a bit about yourself?
In short, I’m an entrepreneur who has mastered the art of making money online. At the same time, I also create websites and content to help others learn how to do the same.
2. When were you first introduced to the blogging and idea of making money online and how?
I first started blogging in 2007, at this point I already had over 10 years of experience with affiliate and online marketing. You can read the full story here, on why I started the blog and how I grew it to where it is today. It was actually ten years ago that I launched the blog, and 20 years since I started making money online.
3. How would you compare making money through blogging with conventional ways of having a job?
It’s not easy to make money online or have your own business. This is something many people will never be able to understand or relate with. When you have your own business and you are the boss, you are completely responsible for how much you make, lose and have at the end of the day. There are many benefits to being an entrepreneur, but it’s also very tasking and stressful in the process.
4. What was the mistake you made in your initial days which you would suggest newcomers shouldn’t do?
I probably should have started a company, hired staff and sold it for several millions of dollars. Sounds easy enough… but it wasn’t something I wanted to do. I enjoy my freedom. However, something I definitely could have done was buy a ton of generic domain names back in the 90s! That’s something I missed out on.
5. When did you make your first dollar online and how? How long did it take?
The first ‘dollar’ I actually make online was through the AOL Web Diner chat room. It was made up of a bunch of site owners and we would talk about web stuff. I started created 468×60 banners for my own sites, then a few other people started asking if I could make one for them as well. I said sure, they would just need to send me $1 in the mail (way before Paypal was around)… and they did! You can also see some of my first affiliate checks here.
6. What are all the tools that you use regularly to write and/or promote content and your online businesses?
WordPress — it’s really all I need. Before 2007, every website I created was in basic HTML and clunky. Now I can create pretty much anything with WP and it’s extremely easy to use, while also being fully customizable.
7. What are the websites/people you follow to keep yourself updated?
There’s really too much out there, so I kind of stopped following individual people. I have a tight group of friends and people I know online… but other than that, I’m not actively following too many other blogs. I will usually just come across good content on social media when it’s getting shared enough.
8. What are all the companies/products you own and how you got the idea of creating them?
My main focuses are on ZacJohnson.com, Blogging Tips and Blogging.org right now. As you can tell, they are all focused on content creation and branding, while also coming right back to the “Zac Johnson” brand.
9. You are quite the established name in the industry now which is awesome. Could you please share a bit about your journey from the ground to such stardom?
Not to keep repeating myself, but I cover a lot of this in my blog anniversary article as well. In short, you just need to create better content than the competition, go out of your way to help others and continually stand out of the crowd by replicating the process. I’ve also created a business and brand I trust and believe in — which is something many others can’t say.
10. What is your favorite link building strategy?
I still like creating content, mainly through contributing to other sites. In the beginning it’s slow, but once you start getting a few high profile sites under your belt, it’s much easier to write for larger sites.
11. Like every business, blogging career can also face a downtime. What kept you motivated you when things weren’t right for you.
I love playing basketball. It’s a great way to break up my day/week and get me away from the computer. After doing this for so long, it’s just an everyday thing when things aren’t going your way, you just need to keep working through it.
12. Please share any advice/tip/lesson with our readers who wants to get online and make money.
Niche down as much as possible and create better content than the competition. Once this is in place, focus on your branding and outreach. You don’t need to go nuts with new content on your own site. Focus on the content promotion more than the content creation.
Please use comment section below to ask anything, I would be happy to answer your questions.