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Today, August 30th 2011, is the 15 year anniversary of the start of my Internet business career.

That's right… I actually started out in 1996. Sorta crazy.

15 Years of Internet Marketing successAnd it's hard to imagine more humble beginnings. The story is too long to recount here, but I started out of desperation – I needed a change in my life.

And I started with one single action… I sent out an email newsletter.

I sent that first newsletter to everyone I personally knew who had an email address. Back in 1996 email was still somewhat rare, so the newsletter only went out to 19 email addresses.

Of course, one of those addresses was my second email address and another was my wife's email address… but I figure there was 19 emails on the distribution list, so I'm sticking with the story that I had 19 subscribers. It felt more important than if I only had 17 subscribers. 🙂

That was the start of my publishing career… and the crazy thing is that newsletter eventually grew to more than 80,000 subscribers.

Since then I've sent out well over 10,000 email broadcasts, and I've sold millions of dollars of products… and I've helped other folks make HUNDREDS of millions.

Now, as I sit here 15 years later, it's pretty interesting that the very first thing I did was start building an email list… even before I had my first web site.

And that leads to my First Law of Internet Business Success:

It's All About The List (And Your Relationship To That List)

For almost all Internet businesses, your only real asset is your list. Or more accurately, your lists, because you should have many of them (prospects, clients, affiliates, email, social media, etc.) …

Your content can get knocked off, your technology can be bettered, your search engine rankings can go away. But no one can take your list away. And with that list you can overcome nearly any setback. It's your “license to print money”… it's your insurance policy.

BOTTOM LINE: In your Internet business there are all kinds of things you can't control, but your list is the one thing that you CAN control.

Of course, I've been saying that to people for almost 15 years now. Some people listen, many don't.

The thing that really kills me is the folks who complain that they don't have a list.

Well NEWSFLASH – none of us came out of the womb with an email list. We all got them the same way – we BUILT them. Every list starts with a single subscriber. If you don't have a list yet, that just means we started before you. But it's not a race, and there's no finish line… so just get over it and start building your list.

Remember, I started with 19 email addresses.

Of course, building the list is only the first part of the equation. The second part is every bit as important… you need to have a relationship with your list. But that's a whole different blog post.

Whew… I really didn't mean for this post to turn into a rant. I figured I would reminisce about the past 15 years. Maybe compare getting started now with getting started back in the day, possibly even give you all 15 of my Laws of Internet Success… but then I got carried away.

I guess I just get worked up when I see people making the same mistakes that I was seeing back when I started.

Just get over it, and focus on building your list.

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102 Replies to “15 Years Of Internet Success (And The First Law)”

  1. Many happy returns Jeff 🙂

    I didn’t even discover the internet until 1998 (in my defence, I was only 13 years old ;)), and only fully immersed myself internet marketing in the last few months.

    It has been a bumpy ride, and I have learnt a great deal, but the key principle to me has remained the same – the money is in the list.

    I am a mere newbie to all of this but I could rant all day about the reasons why a list is so important (you touched upon a few in your post). Needless to say, I agree with what you said!

    All the best Jeff,

    Tom

  2. Congratulations Jeff, I am sure you were (and still are) an inpiration to many people. Some things has been changed since then but some things will never change. Hopefully, building lists will always remain ‘IN’ and will always be one great way to success, but I guess you know it very well 🙂

    Vjeko

  3. Thank you for your wise words Jeff. It’s easy to look at people like you and go WOW … and it’s reassuring to know that you had a beginning too. It’s so easy to go for the quick fix, but a solid business is built with time. I’ve just started my business and building a list is my most important strategy for the first year. Happy 15th birthday!!!

  4. Congratulations on your 15 years of online business Jeff, and thank you for bringing us the Product Launch Formula and sharing so much of yourself so warmly in teaching and helping people!

  5. Jeremy Reeves

    Reply

    Congrats Jeff!

    You’re one of the dinosaur’s of the Internet (in a good way!). It’s funny to think about how far the Internet has come since those days…

    Just think – back then, product launches weren’t even a “thing” and now they dominate the Internet. At least in our little niche of the Internet that is…

    Jeremy Reeves

    • @Jeremy: hehe… product launches weren’t a “thing” because I hadn’t invented them yet. That didn’t come until December, 1996 when I put together my first launch. It was incredibly simple and I did it completely by the seat-of-my-pants. I couldn’t even take credit cards… people had to send me checks. But someone I stumbled on the very basics of what would become Product Launch Formula… and it worked!

      I took that first launch, and I kept working on it and getting better and better… until around 2003 I started sharing it with a few friends (ie, Frank Kern and Yanik Silver and John Reese). The rest, as they say, is history. I’m gonna tell that whole story soon… it’s going to go in my bookstore book.

      One more thing… it’s not just our little niche anymore. Product Launch Formula is in every corner of the Internet now.

  6. Congratulations Jeff! We all have to start where we are and build from there and you have helped thousands of Internet Marketers begin their journeys. I am honored and appreciative of having you as a mentor and teacher. You are THE BEST OF THE BEST!

    Anita
    PLF member (Thank goodness!)

  7. Very cool story – congratulations on your success! Hopefully in 15 years time I can look back over that time with just as much pride.

  8. Kazimiera Rozanska

    Reply

    Hi !
    Jeff WALKER,
    I write from Poland , TODAY is Your SUCCES in Internet Business.BRAVO !

    I have a little only my Work in this Business. Total my time in internet have 7 Years.
    I don’t know , if this TIME is mini or big ?
    I think , next Time give me answer.
    Once again i wish You am best in Your life.
    Greetings from Poland-Kazimiera

  9. Congratulations, Jeff!
    It´s a nice anniversary.
    And imagine: as a part of your list I live in a little country far from you – Slovakia (and maybe you never heard about it :-)). But I read your blog posts regularly and they help me a lot.
    I wish you great success and many further anniversaries!
    Jana

  10. I remember back in 2010 when I deeply understood the impact of “the list”.
    This probably the single most important transformational moment of my business… things changes in business but I guess I already know what I will write on my blog on 23/Mar/2025… I will also dedicate it to “The First Law” 🙂

  11. You’re adorable when you rant, thanks for the reminder to build the list, and CONGRATULATIONS! 15 years! It seems like forever ago, and you had the smarts to build a list all the way back then! Now that’s forward thinking!

    Happy birthday – and here’s to many, many more!

  12. Not sure how I always manage to make the first comment 😉

    Congrats on 15 years of building your audience, authority and influence. Something not many people can say (I’m approaching the 7 year mark myself).

    Keep well!

  13. Great article, Jeff, I couldn’t agree more!
    Oh, and “Congratulations and Happy 15th Birthday!” 🙂

  14. Your online career is inspiring, Jeff.
    One of my favorite videos is the one you made which told the story of how you started out!

    I invested in your Product Launch Formula about 2 years ago. It was the most useful course I’ve ever taken. And it didn’t cost me anything at all – because I earned the fee back – and much, much more – when I then built a six-figure business online with what I had learned from you.

    I think that’s something that people don’t understand: if you want to be successful online, you need to invest in top-of-the-line education.

    I’ve just started a new joint venture (alistblogmarketing.com) and we’re preparing a new product. Of course we’re going to run a classic Jeff Walker launch.

    So thank you, Jeff. You helped me become a professional blogger and a successful online entrepreneur. I owe you…
    – Mary

  15. Happy 15th Jeff. You’ve come a long way since that first email, and many of us have happily rode along on your coattails.

  16. Your story is quite inspiring and I feel I want to get into your footsteps. I am a member of your company Traffic Brokers and I am writing while I am in the midst of sending CPA ad placement proposals to any probable client I can find in the Internet. Although I don’t have great internet skills, I am trying my best to get a hit, hoping that someday I can get out from the rut of employment.

    Your blog came as a great inspiration.

  17. Jeff,

    Well said. Luckily I’m in the group that listened to you. Granted, I had some fluff in my ears for a few years and didn’t build my list as rapidly as I should have, but now I’m laser focused on the task. I’m proud to say it’s well over 120,000 and growing.

    As you well know, I got lazy and allowed the search engines to determine my fate and my income. I got hit hard by the Napalm Strike that many call Panda.

    That’s why from now on my entire business is going to be just focused on growing at least 8 or 9 lists. In fact, in just 45 minutes I have a meeting with a woman who might turn out to be the writer for a new newsletter I’m starting perhaps in just a week.

    I can’t say THANK YOU enough to you for all of your support and guidance. Perhaps one of the best pieces of advice you gave to me over the years is the story you told about Frank Kern. Wasn’t it he who first coined the phrase Psychic Journey? All I can say is that I use that week in and week out in my newsletter and it’s more powerful than a steaming locomotive.

    Happy Birthday, but I have to tell you I’ll be celebrating my Sweet Sixteenth this October. AsktheBuilder.com went live in October of 1995.

  18. Thanks for the history lesson Jeff 🙂 And you are right, what was true back then, still works today, especially the part about building a relationship with your list. It’s pretty useless if your emails are ignored because people don’t care to open it. Big or small, your list is important!

    So if I mail to all 10 of my email addresses, I should have a pretty good shot at making a sale…

    Have a great day, keep doing what you do best!

  19. Happy business birthday Jeff!

    Great to see your success and totally perfect advice about the list. Not always easy getting and keeping attention in the much busier market place we’re in now but just means we have to aspire to brilliant content!

    Cathy

  20. Good post Jeff and I completely agree with your point. But do you think it’s harder now (compared to the past) to build lists if 1) You’re not in the “how to make money” business and/or 2) A “celebrity” to gain social media followers? Sure seems getting people to give their email address (in exchange for something free) is a lot harder today than even a few years ago.

    • @Jim: I’m going to need to do a follow-up post on this topic. I think that it’s a lot easer to get started now than it was back in 1996, for a lot of reasons. However, there are differences.

      Specifically with regards to getting people to join your list, there are real differences. Back when I started, people were VERY skeptical about giving their email addresses for anything. They didn’t believe that people would actually give anything away for free… so I had to put a lot of effort into explaining WHY I would give them a quality email newsletter for free. That was the biggest hurdle when I started out… the very idea of just putting your email address into a form on a web site was sort of weird.

      Now once you got past that hurdle, there was less competition back then… it wasn’t like people were asked to opt-in a hundred times a day like they are now. So it was easier to stand out. But remember, there was a lot less people online… so your target market was incredibly small compared to today. There has got to be 1,000 times more people online right now.

      My opt-in rates are astronomically higher now then they were back then. A *huge* part of that is that I didn’t know how to market very well back then. There was really nobody teaching Internet Marketing, and certainly no one preaching the importance of list building. And the squeeze page wasn’t even a glint in Dean Jackson’s eye back then.

  21. hi Jeff,

    that was a good advice. Robert Allen, the NY bestseller was in Kuala Lumpur recently to deliver a seminar and he said the same thing.

    cheers,
    sandy

    malaysia

  22. Thanks Jeff! Your blog was inspirational. I’ve only had my website up for a few months. Same with my Ezine. Congratulations on your 15th Anniverary!

    Pete

  23. Mike Herberts

    Reply

    I’ve only been at it 7 years and instinctively built a list just like you did when I started out. I hear your frustration loud and clear. No matter how many times a newbie hears ‘build a list’ they do anything BUT. So I’ll say it too. Make something of genuine value and gift it in return for an email address. Everything else comes AFTER that first action. Well said Jeff!

  24. Congratulations and many more successful years.
    Thank you for the tip and inspiration I needed today. I’ve got a great project with products and a site (easyembedded.com), but need to market and sell.
    My missing link ? My email lists.

  25. Hi Jeff,

    Wow, 15 years! It has been an amazing journey for you. I want to congratulate you and also to thank you for all the things you have done to help people. As PLF 3.0 owner I know how you care about your customers, how you care about the results we get and that is the most important thing in life – to help someone. And you have done it on a massive scale. Thank You!

    See you in PLF 3.0 event in October!

    Sincerely,
    Peter

  26. 15 years ago I was just a 11 year old kid. I used to play video games then as far as I can remember 😉 . I really enjoyed your start, and thinking what will we see after 15 more years.

  27. Dear Jeff, Many, many congratulations on an unprecedented career rich with the trial and tribulations of starting and building a successful internet business. I for one along with many others have eagerly followed you for years and you have provided just a wealth of honest, authentic knowledge, advice and wisdom. We have been blessed to have you as one of the most talented, world-class thought leaders and again I applaud you on your amazing 15 year journey! And what is even more impressive is your tireless humility, simple kindness and humor. In my book you are the # 1 Internet Thought leader in the world as these traits along with your infinite accomplishments make you indispensable.

    Since besides choosing the right niche (Yes like so many others I am starting over and trying to get things right this time!) what advice would you give us in starting an e-mail list? I am looking so forward to reviewing your other 14 Laws of Internet Success! Again many congratulations and thank you for every single solitary bit of advice and wisdom that you share with us and I know that I can “take it to the bank.’

    With Deep Appreciation and Gratitude,

    Catherine Ross

  28. Thank you Jeff – I listened to you when you were speaking at Yaniks 3 day conferennce in London a few years ago. Then i knew nothing about the internet – I did not even know what adwords and adsense was.

    You inspired me and made me think it was possible to build an online business – I have since set up 3 niche websites with my daughters. It is difficult to put into words how your enthusiasm and passion still influences my work today.

    Thank you for this prompt email – I know it but it always helps to be reminded.

    Your work has enabled our 3 daughters to work online full time because it gave me the confidence that online work was possible.. Are daughters are 20, 17 and 13 years. Two of them have written ebooks, and together they have set up software packages for lightroom and photoshop.

    They are obviously self employed – they are also home educated but that is another story. I have written an ebook in a specialized niche (barefoot horse trimming) and also run a combined homeopathic remedy website.

    I am not sure what you are offering at the moment but please keep me on your lists – and congratulations.

    I still remember the picture you shared with us of you in your dressing gown in front of a computer screen….!

  29. Jeff … Happy 15th! Your posts, email messages and videos are a constant source of encouragement and inspiration for me, and you are a voice of reason amidst a sea of internet noise. Just a few months ago I had NO LIST. Zero. Through your advice, I simply got started. I’m now at 350 fantastic fans and followers with whom I am building an amazing relationship. (I didn’t “get” that part until I experienced it first hand!) In the past 2 months I have created 2 products which I’ve offered to my LIST .. and they’ve purchased with rave reviews! Jeff Walker is at the top of my dream list of those who I wish to follow and work with more closely over the next year. Thank you, Jeff, for your generous doses of sensible advice and information. I’m thrilled to be on your list. 🙂

    • @Pamela: Great job! That’s awesome to hear… you’ve got a fantastic start. As you’ve seen, it’s really not a big deal to just get started building a list.

  30. Hi Jeff, another fantastic blog post, I love everything you write and say, you are such a gifted communicator, you could do a whole launch on how to communicate online! I was with a client today who were thinking of stopping using their list, but I persuaded them otherwise, hoping you are doing some new videos soon

  31. Congratulations Jeff – I’m right behind you as I’ll be hitting my 15th anniversary on December 1st….like you I started in the early days – 1996. In fact my business, and continues to be my main business is in investing/trading educational training — I think we even did a J.V. together in our early years in the same business. I’ve since gone on to follow your Product Launch Formula and had success with courses/systems. Hard to believe some of my first newsletters also got delivered via fax! Congrats.

    • @Mark: Holy cow… I completely forgot about that – I did the same thing, we offered fax delivery in addition to email delivery for that first newsletter. I think we might have charged extra for fax delivery.

  32. Congrats Jeff! You have always been an inspiration and even here in Nigeria (so many thousands of miles away, your impact is felt. I wish you greater, more prosperous years ahead!

  33. Congratulations Jeff it was a long and quite bumpy ride to your success. Thank you for sharing your ideas and experiences. You inspire me a lot. More power and God Bless!

  34. Happy anniversary! Would love to hear the other 14 laws, and I look forward to the next 15 years of IM.

  35. Jeff,
    Isn’t it amazing how fast the years fly by? Seems like this industry has been around forever, yet it’s only been such a very short time. Thanks for sharing your insights on the value of a list.

    For those just getting going on their list building journey, know that you don’t need a big list to be very profitable. It’s all in the relationship and trust you bring to the list. When we first began to calculate the value of our list, we were stunned to find each list name was worth $1100 per year to us. That lit a fire under us to build bigger lists with even more value. Don’t over think it. Just get busy and bring the value to them. Your list will grow on its own.

  36. Happy Anniversary, Jeff! Here’s wishing you and all of us prosperity and useful activity in the coming years, too. :)Texanne

  37. “And I started with one single action… I sent out an email newsletter.”
    Всего 1 письмо, а результат поразительный! Поздравляю.

  38. Congratulations Jeff,

    15 years later, the world is a richer (better) place for your having sent that first email and started building your list.

    Thanks for your wisdom, your knowledge and your training programs.

    All the best,

    Joe

  39. I have been able to create a viable offline business but have had no luck with an online business yet. It’s strange…but I actually have a long list but have yet to really develop a relationship with the people on it. Can’t seem to find the right niche. Looking forward to your words of wisdom on that subject.

  40. Hi Jeff !
    I follow you for more than 10 month now and I’m very impressed by what you achieved !
    I totally agree with you, have a list is THE key element to make money on the internet. Mine is now around 210 subscribers, it still few compared to 80K but i’m working hard to make it bigger.
    Thanks a lot, you’re very inspiring 🙂

    All the best

    Alex

  41. Yes, I’m another one on your list. Before following your advice I use to serve a niche market and had no idea how big my audience was until I was able to get them to opt-in on a product that I was offering. Now I am serving a few niches that I am passionate about and it serves me in a big way as a result…
    Tim

  42. Hi Jeff,

    You are a true inspiration! I can only dream of being where you are, but I have a great advantage from being on your list and being one of your PLF customers. I learned so much from you. I now have to get over my fear and send my list my first product, which is done, but I am procrastinating with cold feet. (Fear of rejection, fear of losing subscribers and not selling anything.) I need to put the fear aside and JUMP IN! Hopefully, I will do this soon!

    Giselle

    • Giselle! Please please please get over it and release that product!

      I know exactly how you feel… worried about being rejected. I was in the exact same spot. But you need to just release the damn product or it will literally kill you. Sitting around busily NOT TAKING ACTION is completely soul-destroying. It will eat you up.

      Yes, you will lose subscribers. Yes, many will “reject” you by not buying. That doesn’t matter… the only thing that matters is the impact you make on the people you help with your product… and the experience you take away from releasing the product.

      Guess what… the vast majority of the people on my list have never bought anything from me, and they never will. That doesn’t matter… and it hasn’t stopped me from building an incredible business, from making a huge impact, and from achieving the life of my dreams.

  43. I send my warmest congratulations to you on your 15th anniversary. This special milestone offers an opportunity to celebrate the groundbreaking work of Jeff Walker in keeping people across Interwebs informed of critical issues in product launches.

  44. Hi Jeff,

    Thanks so much for that “kick in the pants” that I needed. I have had my product ready for a month. I know it is very valuable, but I was too scared to try this.

    Ok, I’m ready! It’s going out today! (or tomorrow at the latest) :))

    Thank you so much for the response and the vote of confidence!

    Giselle

  45. Jeff…

    Congratulations…! It’s funny how many people throw in the towel, and then there are the champions. The one’s that see it through…

    Along with the congratulations…I also have a huge thank-you to pass on…

    I achieved a 19 yr-old goal this past week. Well…It was actually achieved a few months back, but it took me this long to realize it and finally take it on-board.
    I now only work a 3 day week… It has been a goal since I was 21 and yourself and PLF/PLM has helped me achieve that…the shift in my mindset since completing PLM and being a part of the Platinum Group since the early days has been amazing life changing…

    So a huge thank-you and congrats on your 15th! All the best to you and all the gang…

    James.K

    • @James: That’s GREAT to hear… as you know, we are definitely kindred spirits when it comes to lifestyle and work/life balance.

  46. Thanks for the reminder about mastering the basics before moving on to anything more advanced. I also couldn’t agree more with the idea of building a relationship with your followers. I’m just starting to grasp the feel for doing this. It’s funny, all I had to do was just be “me”, and it started to click.

  47. Jeff,

    Congratulations on crossing the 15 year mark in your business. Back in the 80’s I had a Commodore 64 computer with a modem for dialing into bulletin boards (and racking up HUGE phone bills) but it wasn’t until 1997 that I finally plugged into the Internet…

    …and I was using AOL!!! (Embarrassing but true.)

    I’ve personally learned a lot from you and and grateful you started teaching what you learned about running a business online.

    Here’s to 15 more years of success!

    Andrew Seltz

  48. @Jeff, I’ve actually found it the opposite. I also started in 1996 (doing movie reviews for parents, which I’m still doing) and quickly built a newsletter list of more than 25,000 weekly newsletter readers without promoting it beyond a link on my site. But back then there were no experts on what to do with the list and beyond selling ad space (which dried up in the dot-com bust), I didn’t pay much attention to it since it was so much smaller than the overall readership on my site. Due to neglect on my part (for that very size differential reason), my newsletter list shrank. I’m rebuilding it, but it’s nowhere as fast as in the past (even with 1.5 million annual unique visitors).

    • @Jim: Well I guarantee that you would build your list faster if you actually had some way for people to opt-in on your site. 🙂

  49. @Jeff, something I’d be very curious to know would be the progression you and others like you made within the first few years of working in the industry. Even if just as a percentage of what you’re doing now. It would be insightful to see how the growth curve works for those that succeed. For example, is it a linear progression or exponential? How quickly can people make it to the big leagues?

    • @Emmet: My experience is that it hasn’t been linear OR exponential. It’s been a matter of occasional quantum leaps… where I figured something out, added in a new component or process or asset… and all of a sudden the business doubled or tripled. Then things plateau for a year or two, and then there’s another huge leap forward.

      It would be interesting to graph it all out… but I’ve never really done that. I do know that I worked my butt off for the first year and I think I made somewhere around $10k.

  50. Ed MacDonald

    Reply

    Hey Jeff,

    As a newbie with a product but no list, your post and success reminded me of a line from a song a friend and I had written while living in Saudi Arabia a number of years ago…”Where will I be in a few years from now…still stuck in the desert or dream sailing somehow?”

    So as I think of my, as yet to be unleashed, internet business as a small boat on a vast and choppy sea, another line for that song comes to mind based on your First Law.

    “Although at times I imagine by ‘boat’ being smashed in the ‘mist’, the safest path to shore is simply to go with the list.” (Okay…might need some work, but hopefully you get the jist in regards to the reference about the list…use ‘it’ to your advantage in order to right your ship).

    ‘Boat/Ship’= Business
    ‘Mist’ = The unknown
    ‘List’ = What a boat or ship may do before it is about to capsize.

    Congratulations on reaching your ‘shore’ and providing a ‘beacon’ of light for those of us still at sea…with some of us out there without a paddle. Oops…I guess the paddle reference should only be used when using a ‘creek’ as part of the analogy so please disregard. 🙂

    Ed…still at ‘sea’…way out at ‘sea’…for now…but…starting to see a light…through the mist…wait…oops… it’s just the beacon they use to signal Batman…nevermind.

  51. @jeff, They can, you’re just seeing one of 3 different versions of the home page (testing each) that has no links. The other 2 do, plus more than half our traffic comes in through back links (thanks to 15 years of them), and when they hit any old review, they get a lightbox pop-up for the newsletter.

  52. Gail Davidson

    Reply

    I LOVE your style. I sent a broadcast out yesterday with this ho hum attitude of ONLY 151 on the list (one of them myself!). This AM I got two nice orders. 151 outrageous names on that fabulous list – way to go girlfriend.

    None of us were born with a list, a customer base that actually orders, a fabulous income and a grand lifestyle. Just shut up and make it happen. Best advice!

  53. Happy anniversary, Jeff. You were one of the first Young Guns I met in those heady early days as the Grid coalesced into a marketing powerhouse (early aughts, as Web marketing sites were finally being seen by Joe Sixpack as safe to log credit card info into)… and it was clear then you were the dude to watch. I’m glad we’ve got to hang out a bit, and I hope the next 15 years are even more exciting, profitable and weird than the last 15…

    John Carlton

    • @John: you’ve always been and always will be an inspiration. And more important you’re a damn fun dude to hang out with. 🙂

      And didn’t we talk about getting caught up in reading/answering comments when I first started this blog?

  54. Hey Jeff. Been on your list for awhile and a follower of yours but you probably haven’t heard much from me.

    Congratulations on the anniversary. 15 years, that’s awesome.

    You are an inspiration to us all.

  55. Congratulations! Your consistent motivation/inspiration is paying off. I’m planning to attend the event with my sister, Holly, in October. May you continue to inspire and mentor for years to come. All my best to you and family!

  56. Hi Jeff,

    I do not know specifically but I have heard of you on the Web, including the “big” French Web … I am also in your contact list! You are a living legend of Internet Marketing and especially among the first to make a fortune with a blog (if my info is good) …
    In short, it’s an honor to comment on your blog for your fifteen years of success on the Internet. And I also hope that one day such a success … 🙂

  57. dude you rock and anyone who appreciates “good” tequila is OK in my book.
    To answer the “in our little niche” I am in a niche (car care) that has nothing to do with IM . Thanks to PLF I am rocking product launches…my list loves them. I am also getting pretty good at winging a impromptu launch and building a quick simple launch blog…sorta a variation of your “quick launch” not the duration of a full on launch… I just recently did a full launch to sell a continuity with a physical product no less…like Gevalia Coffee model.
    NO ONE in my niche industry is doing launches or even tried selling the product I have with continuity…ha PLF rocks!

  58. Congrats Jeff. Just wondering are you building a list from this blog? 😉
    Nice to be on your “list”

  59. Jeff, I tell people that the best time to start a list is five years ago (or in your case 15 years ago!) and the second best time is TODAY! It is never too early or too late to start building relationships.

    Congratulations on your success and thank you for all you have done for me and others.

  60. Jeff,
    Thank God you got in this business, as it has be a gift to the world. 15 years is an eternity when you think of this industry.

    I have been in it 15 months and can’t imagine where it will be in the next 15 years!

    Lifetime PLFr

  61. Hello Jeff, I have been following your Marketing for the Past few months since you Published PLF3. I completely Understand that building a list is the way to go, but If you were just getting started what would you do to start to build your list? Thanks in advance for your great advice.

    Alex.

    • @Alex: I would do the same thing I did 15 years ago… I would try to create the most compelling offer I could to get people to opt-in. Create a great report, video, newsletter, survey, software, etc… then give it away in exchange for an email address.

      Create the offer, put together a squeeze page for the offer, and then drive traffic to that squeeze page.

  62. Congratulations Jeff,

    Amazing. Clarity right from the outset. The date you began so unerringly etched in your mind. What a fabulous ride and such a rich experience in all ways. I wish I could pinpoint the date that I began my internet marketing career with such certainty – I just kind of fell into it.

    Wishing you multiples more of 15’s of continuous success.

  63. Pingback: Happy Anniversary Jeff! - Blog Income Life Blog Income Life

  64. Congrats and much respect for what you have achieved… please keep this in mind… “success should not be viewed by what has been achieved, but it must be viewed and valued according to what a person or group of people had to go through to achieve it.” Just think… you are 15 years young… if only you knew then what you know now!

    Enjoy your day… I have a question… how many times along the way did you think about “quitting” and just giving it all up? I am sure there is a great story behind that condition as well. Please share when you have time. I appreciate you.

  65. Hey Jeff,

    Happy 15th anniversary 🙂

    Do you believe an email newsletter is still the way to go (instead of a blog, for example) ?

    Matt

  66. Hey Jeff,
    Even thought, a lot of people knows and says that the most important thing on an online business is the email list. Very few, are the ones that put the effort to start one, most of them are the ones that achieve their objectives.

    Thanks for this post!

  67. Hi Jeff,

    Congratulations on reaching the 15 year milestone!

    I have to say … your Product Launch Formula has been without a doubt … the most profitable internet marketing product I’ve ever purchased!

    I use it all the time — even in niches which aren’t well known — I get people onto a list, then do a product launch using your methods, and I’m always amazed at the results.

    I hope you keep updating PLF with new versions as time goes on!

    Best Regards,
    James Shoob

  68. Hello Sir
    Thanks for the reminder that no one starts out at the top. Although I haven’t been with you since ’96, your brief trip down memory lane was inspiring for me becuase I’m just starting out.
    thanks for being open

  69. A belated Happy 15th Anniversary, Jeff! And thank you for all the wonderful stuff you do. Looking forward to Live Event in October – and learning heaps more from you.

  70. Hi Jeff,

    I think the August 30th 2011 when you wrote this article was a great day for you – 15 years of Internet Success. Happy Anniversary for your online business!

    Certainly you’re a live legend of online marketing. An expression that you saw or heard often, but I think every time it come deeply from soul: “thank you Jeff” for all that you do for other people.

    A little above you have written: “Guess what… the vast majority of the people on my list have never bought anything from me, and they never will.”

    For a person who climbs in online marketing, a product, course, seminar or other thing of a great value that is sold by some of the most known big names in online marketing means in fact a shortcut on his way, much less time spent in researches, or at a level even a checking of his knowledge – or finding of some things, tools that would been very difficult to found (perhaps never).

    Unfortunately, for many people the price of this kind of top level product seems to be too expansive for them. Two years ago the great idea of the “big boys in online marketing” to share for free to their email list of a bit a bit, or small parts from their knowledge, that means in fact maybe their first long-time strategy. Why I affirmed that?

    People who want to succeed will follow their free advices offered to obtain the first start – the first earnings, the first prove for them as an online business is possible indeed – so they will overcome the lack of confidence. Then, sooner or later, these people will be able to buy these top products to bring their businesses to a high level – the product so expansive for them in the recent past.

    What you have written at beginning: “And it’s hard to imagine more humble beginnings…” this seems to be the main engine for many people who already achieved the success… A very strong motivation from some difficult life experiences.

    Thank you again Jeff, I hope you’ll have success, healthy, inspiration and the same passion-desire to reach new levels many years from now.

    All the best for you,
    Doru

  71. I thought I would share my PLF story and say thank you.

    I ran a test launch following PLF against 2 lists. The first was 3000 names that I purchased, highly targeted to my niche. The second was 67 people built following Jeff’s PLF.

    Results:
    Purchased list: 2% open, .43% click thru rate
    My list: 70% open, 20% click thru rate

    Just thought the results speak for themselves.

    I’ve become a believer.

  72. Hi Jeff,
    Congrats on your 15 year anniversary! Just wanted to share my PLF success. Two years ago we did a email campaign selling around $20,000 in product. In 2010 after purchasing PLF we increased sales to $50,000. Both our campaigns were done the exact same time of year. Looking forward to launching the 2011 campaign in the next few months.
    PLF was the best product I have ever purchased online – just follow the format and you will succeed. Thanks Jeff!

  73. Wow Jeff! You’re an institution, and thanks for being a good example! Let’s get moving! It’s good to see that Swedish Stamp!

  74. You all guys are amazing… I am rookie and newbie and shy but fly 🙂 Thou I feel these guys rock a lot
    peace 2ya’ll

  75. Pingback: Getting Started with Email Marketing | DavidWogahn.com

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