Everyone can do better


Everyone has the ability to earn at least one million US dollars per year in ethical and legal ways. This is even more true if you live in a developed, industrialised country and have at least a high school diploma.

If you’re not making at least one million dollars a year ethically and legally, you’re not working hard or smart enough.

Of course, everyone has excuses, but the fact of the matter is, for every excuse you make, someone can stand up from the crowd and say that they were in a similar situation as you – or even worse, with fewer resources at their disposal – and they were able to achieve that type of income. (And, by the way, this wasn’t by winning the lottery either; we’re talking regular annual income.)

If, like most people, you don’t earn at least one million US dollars a year, you have no legs to stand on to criticise someone else who doesn’t either. Just because you make double, or triple, or ten times more money than your neighbour, or your brother, or your cousin, doesn’t mean you have license to criticise them for their failure to make more money. You yourself, after all, fail every year in earning the income that you are capable of!


Considerations before you spend money on information


Seeing as I’m on Twitter almost every day, and have a few of my own products to market, not to mention this site and the Afrikaans version which could always do with some extra readers, I thought it might be good to invest in a course on how to make money on Twitter. The hottest product on Gumroad is a guide called “The Art of Twitter”, available for $89.00 (or if you’re lucky and get it at a discount, $62.00). More than 5,000 copies of the guide have already been sold, so it’s certainly worth considering.

However, I hold back before I press the “Buy Now” button. Here are the reasons:

I have bought many information products. Almost always you are disappointed at the end. Why? Maybe the content is nothing but rehashed nonsense. In other cases, the information is decent enough, and you learn things you didn’t know. What’s the problem then? You complain that you hoped there would be “more information”.

What you really mean: You were hoping on the last page of the PDF would be an incantation that conjures up a fairy who will do all the work for you. Because this is the inevitable next step: Six months plus of mostly boring work before you see any results.

The other reason I’m holding on to my $89 (or $62) is because – so I reckon – you can get most of the content for free if you just search for it on Google (or Bing, Yahoo, Duckduckgo or Brave). Check out the table of contents: The basics of Twitter; Picking a niche; How to attract followers; Popular tips NOT to follow; Growth strategies; How to create tweets that get likes, retweets, and engagements; The easiest, fastest, and safest ways to make money with Twitter; How to avoid getting banned; How to build a strong network. Then there are the bonuses: How to create and monetize Twitter bots; Growing beyond Twitter (Reddit, Telegram, Instagram, Facebook); a free 3-month subscription to an automation tool; and an archive of 258 of the author’s best tweets. Besides the 3-month subscription (on your own you get seven days free anyway, and after that it’s $12.49 per month minimum), you can find similar information in sometimes long, detailed articles on the first page of Google’s search results – provided of course you use the right phrases and keywords. Similar research can also be done on YouTube, Pinterest, and of course on Twitter itself, where people regularly publish mini articles on the topic.

Wouldn’t it save time to just buy the product? I reckon: Not really. It doesn’t take long to search for information, and you can read five or six different articles instead of getting just one person’s view. And there’s always a possibility that one article will give you additional phrases with which you can search for more information.

Why, when you can get most of the information for free, do people still spend so much money on a set of PDFs?

The psychological factor. You feel if you spend more than a few dollars on something, you will surely jump in and make use of what you learn. Plus, an information product worth a quarter of the retail price will provide you with a plan you can start executing once you’ve read the last few pages (and, to your dismay, seen there’s no incantation for a fairy who’s going to do all the work).

So, what should you do if you want to continue your attempt to make money from Twitter?

Ask yourself when you want to start, because what you’re looking at is a new part-time job. Want to get started right away? Tomorrow morning? Next Monday?

Then you need a plan, preferably in steps: Who is your target market? What topic are you going to focus on? What will you include in your Twitter profile? What type of content will you post? How often will you be posting content? A list of big names in your chosen niche that you should follow, and whose content you should respond to. And so on.

Then, time to do some research.

If you don’t mess up too much, you might be able to buy yourself a new lawn chair in a few months with your accumulated Twitter dollars – or, who knows, perhaps a new car.


Set yourself up for opportunity and luck – even if you never become a superstar


To build on a thought from last week or so: If you look at most people in their middle years or later, it’s clear that they never became superstars. They may be “superstars” to their families, but very few people end up with exceptional talents and achievements in any area, much less in more than one area – such as sports and art, or engineering and cooking.

The other part of the thought is that even people who achieve superstar status sometimes do more harm than good. Despite all their achievements and prizes and status.

So even though you never achieved superstar status, never won any prizes for your work, never achieved much in any field, but it can also be said that you did little harm to other people, to animals, and to the environment, I think it’s entirely appropriate to say that you can hold your head high – you’ve done well.


Point 1. As already mentioned, very few people become superstars. Only a select group of people achieve more than one or two of the things they once set out to do or hoped to achieve.

Point 2. One person criticises another for his unimpressive income and low contribution to a common cause. Asks the latter: “Are you making as much money as you possibly can? Are you doing everything in your power to get more done? Why don’t you make more money? Too busy enjoying life? Can’t figure out how? Tried but failed? Tried but didn’t try hard enough?”

Point 3. Few people create income opportunities out of thin air. Most people accept opportunities offered to them, and then they work hard to maintain these sources of income. But did they create the opportunity for themselves? No.

Point 4. What does happen is that people prepare to profit from existing opportunities by training in a certain field and by gaining certain knowledge.

* * *

I. Identify a good opportunity – for you. People’s needs and desires are all opportunities.

II. Get trained or gain experience in a particular opportunity field. Then set yourself up to profit from existing opportunities. (Training doesn’t happen overnight. If you’re twenty, you have the option to get trained for several things. If you’re fifty, you can still get trained or develop skills yourself, but you’re more likely to look at what you’re already trained for, or at what you’re already experienced in.)

III. I initially thought that 99% of all the money I made in my life came from opportunities that were presented to me – from people asking me if I was interested in a position in a gift shop when I was a student to people in Taiwan walking up to me or calling me at home or knocking on my door and asking me if I had time for another English class. Then about a minute ago I realised: I was set up for the opportunities, in the case of the latter examples, by coming to Taiwan and being contactable.

Another thing: Most people don’t hustle on a street corner for money. Strangely enough, the only people who do this, who make cold calls and ask people for money, are beggars – who are seen as being on the lowest rung of the economic hierarchy. I wanted to say that street vendors hustle too, but they also set themselves up for opportunity: people walking past them who happen to want, or need what they are selling – “I’m hungry, and here’s a guy selling hot dogs”.