The Journey Begins
I was born on June 25, 1973 in Singapore into a middle-class family of four. My parents worked very hard to provide the best for our family, but their own union was a troubled one. Sadly they were unable to reconcile their differences, and had decided to separate by the time I was in elementary school.
It was then that I decided to get my first job, and I started working part-time after school. This helped instill in me a strong work ethic and taught me the value of money early on. Even though I was a bit of a workaholic—and still am—I realized that I needed something more. I wanted to be able to enjoy my work and be wealthy from it at the same time.
When the time came to enroll in college, I chose to attend the Singapore Institute of Management, where I earned a BSc (Management Honors) degree. I figured I'd work my way up the chain at some big company and that even if I didn't get rich right away, I'd still make a good, middle-class income for my family. Little did I know where life was about to take me …
'RAGS' BEFORE RICHES
Flashback to 1997: I was fresh out of college and had just taken on a sales and marketing job at Sony Music Entertainment (Singapore). I was at the job for about a year before moving on to MobileOne, which is one of the top telecommunications service providers in Singapore. I'd recently married during this period as well and was very happy to be supporting my new family.
I also found myself spending a lot more time on my hobbies. I am an avid guitar player and love to write songs. So I started thinking about marketing some of my compositions.
The Internet was really starting to take off in 1997, and it seemed logical to me that I could reach a wide audience with my music by putting it online. In other words, I was interested in Internet marketing but wasn't actually thinking about starting an online business at all. It wasn't until I began visiting different Web sites in an effort to learn how to market my songs that I came across some information about potential money-making opportunities.
“Could this be my chance to get rich?” I wondered. Well I don't do anything halfway, so I dived right in. From 1997 to 2002 I spent all of my time after work trying to learn how to make money on the Internet. This meant getting up at 7:00 AM to go to my full-time job, then locking myself away from 11:00 PM to 3:00 AM while I did everything I could to get a business going!
Unfortunately my first few years in business online did not result in the rags-to-riches miracle I'd dreamed of so vividly. Not by any stretch of the imagination. The fact is that I had no idea where to start, nor what kind of business I wanted to run.
For five straight years I juggled long days and sleepless nights, and barely had any time to spend with my family. The first few 'business ventures' I got involved in scammed me out of several thousand dollars. Still, I refused to give up and continued pouring more and more money into different ideas. I bought all of the how-to e-books and courses, hoping someone would finally reveal the secret to making money online.
Do you want to guess just how much money I blew? Make sure you're sitting down for this … I spent close to US$50,000 trying to unearth the key to that door I was banging my head against in a desperate effort to gain financial freedom … and I charged most of that $50,000 to credit cards. My wife was not happy with me, to say the least. All of those credit card bills were rapidly gaining interest, and we were impossibly behind on payments. The situation was truly grim beyond words.
My self-confidence was fading rapidly, and I was desperate to prove to everyone—but especially to myself—that this “Internet thing” wasn't just a dream. I spent many nights alone, often in tears and feeling shut out by everyone around me. I asked myself over and over, “Why? Why can't I make this work? What am I missing?”
THE POWER OF FOCUS
It is often in our darkest moments, though, that we finally see clearly …
My turning point came one night in 2002. I was up burning the midnight oil again and asking myself how I could get out of the mess I'd created. A part of me was ready to throw in the towel, but I'm simply too stubborn to give up—even in the face of what looked like total disaster. I had to admit that not all of that $50,000, five-year-long ‘education’ was totally worthless. In fact I'd gained many valuable skills and learnt almost everything there was to know about the main models of Internet business.
I knew, for instance, that I needed to target a viable market. I knew I needed to deliver solutions to that market. I understood that I needed to drive market traffic to my offer, and that I had to have a lead-capture and follow-up system in place.
Then it finally hit me: “I'm not missing anything!” In a flash I realized that I knew what I was supposed to be doing, but I just wasn't doing it. Instead of putting in the hard work of applying my knowledge, I was still buying into all the hype about overnight riches. A part of me still wanted to believe that all I had to do was put up a Web site, push a few buttons, then wait for the customers to come flooding in by some invisible, magnetic force. Now the truth is that it can be this easy when you already have a successful business. Once you've put in the hard work up-front to build an existing customer base, you've got it made. But you have to treat your business as a real business first.
This was my problem. I'd been playing at my business like a hobby. I'd failed to implement the most fundamental concepts of Internet marketing—like having a target market, a clear strategy and, most importantly, following a proven system. It wasn't the system that was failing me, it was my failure to follow through.
What I lacked was focus. I realized that all I'd ever needed to do to succeed was focus and commit to taking action on what I'd already learned. The thousands of dollars worth of material I'd read over the years had revealed all of the proven business models. I just needed to choose one and stick to it. Armed with this insight, I renewed my commitment to succeed. I decided then and there that failure was not an option.
I settled on affiliate marketing as the business model to focus on and started applying myself with concentrated energy and dedication. It wasn't long before the tide began turning in my favor. I made my first online sale. Believe me, your first sale will give you the greatest feeling in the world once it comes, especially if it has been five years in the making! Well, then I made another sale, and another. It was a slow trickle at first, but I finally had my proof. No one could doubt my ability to make sales online anymore—not even me.
MY SUCCESS STORY—AND YOURS
After that moment of truth in 2002, I became unstoppable. By focusing and applying a proven system, my income continued to soar. Just how far have I come since the days of debt?
First, I've been the top-earning affiliate in almost every Internet affiliate program I've promoted. I've created dozens of my own information products, too, and seen them sell like crazy. I currently own and run over 10 active money-making Web sites, including the following:
You can also check out these:
Each of these Web sites continues to pull in profits for me on autopilot, to the tune of about five figures per month. None of this happened overnight, either. Each of these sites represents a point in my learning curve, and each is the result of taking an idea and seeing it through to completion. Some of these sites sell individual products, and some of them are membership sites that generate recurring income. I'll let you in on a secret: not a single one of these sites, on its own, could ever generate the income I have right now. It is the cumulative income generated by of all of these sites over time that creates a five-to-six-figure monthly income.
Now let's look at some of my other credentials. I've become an in-demand speaker on the Internet marketing seminar circuits, and I regularly travel around the world giving presentations to newbies and experienced insiders alike.
I was also presented with the first ever World Internet Challenge trophy at the 2006 World Internet Marketing Summit held in Singapore, where I set up a business without preparation and from scratch in front of a ‘live’ audience of 1,000 … and proceeded to generate five-figure sales from it in just 72 hours!
Subsequently I was invited to be the only local featured speaker at the World Internet Mega Summit held in Singapore in May 2007. This was the world’s biggest Internet business event, attended by over 3,500 participants. Here I was given a standing ovation and voted Best Speaker by the audience!
It’s not all business success, either. I am driving—yes—the luxury car.
I know I look like a typical Internet marketer showing off here! I was very happy on the day I purchased that BMW, though, because it symbolized the results of years of hard work and struggle. I wanted something to remind me just how far I've come, and I am reminded of my journey to success each time I get behind the wheel.
Another benefit of success is that my wife and I are able to travel almost anywhere in the world. We finally had the chance to visit Universal Studios in Hollywood last year when I went to California for a marketing seminar. And whenever we need to get away from our everyday routine in Singapore, we can vacation somewhere with a different climate and culture.
Most importantly, though, my family has security, and my wife and I have more time to spend at home with our kids.
We've achieved wealth beyond our wildest dreams, and we owe it all to the Internet business.
The crazy thing is I've managed to achieve all of this while marketing to predominantly English-speaking consumers, and English is not even my first language. I’ve shown you just a fraction of what I've been involved in—we haven't even addressed how I achieved my first million-dollar product launch yet. We’ll get to that soon. What I want you to absorb right now is that these same results are possible for you.
Maybe a car or luxury holidays are not the status symbols you would choose, but I’m sure there’s something you’ve always wanted. A new house? A fancy, flat-screen television? A jacuzzi? Or perhaps something less tangible, like a better education for the kids? Time to pursue a sporting or artistic dream? A comfortable early retirement plan? You could have any of these things in due time when you focus on building a solid business! The unfolding of my story in the next chapter could well be yours in the making too.