03-01-2016 01:24 AM
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What it took to make $1,000,000 online within 5 years

The first ever online millionaire that I ever met I am still friends with to this day. He's one of the biggest CPA marketers in their industry and he's a guy who has helped probably tens of thousands of marketers make their first dollar online. He is a big inspiration for me. 

One surprising thing about Lorenzo is he is younger than me (every other mentor I have is older) - when I first met him I had heard about this guy "Mr Green". Friends of mine online had been following him for months and living by every word he wrote in his blog. I had actually finished up a meeting with a guy who had been raving about this 'Mr Green'.

I had organized an online marketing meet-up that night in Wellington, New Zealand - at the time I was doing well in offline marketing but not so well in online marketing - I had made my first affiliate sale but hadn't made much else. 

We all met at Starbucks (about 5 of us) and got talking. There was one guy in the group raving on and on about how he was making $20,000 a month online. To me at the time it was a lot of money. I could only dream of making that much. Then there was this other character Lorenzo who sat their silently the entire time. He was a designer who did CPA and said he had a few good months. He didn't go into specifics but he seemed to know an awful lot about CPA Marketing - he went through how he got started, what campaigns he was focussing on and he even had an office. 

After the meeting I went back and did some research - to my surprise Lorenzo was 'Mr Green' a guy who my marketing friends worshipped who by 21 was already a millionaire online and making XXX,XXX.XX per month. It shocked me - made me almost sick that I had been around one of the biggest guys in the industry and he happened to come to a meetup I had organized in a place I thought was deserted of any good marketers. I didn't sleep that night - went to work and within 1 week I had broken through and made my first $1000 online selling my own products. 

This story is one of the reasons I approach online marketing as I do today.

I learnt from Lorenzo that you can make a lot of money without having to show it off and in many ways I really respected him for it. This is also one of the reasons that you'll never see a CPA training section in this forum. I don't recommend learning CPA Marketing here I recommend going to Lorenzo's forum at http://stackthatmoney.com in order to learn that part of online marketing. He is one of the most giving guys and a great example that I have based much of what I do on.

Here's what it took for me to go from that point in my life in 2010 to the stage 5 years later when I am now a Millionaire. 

1. Learning to live with your mistakes:

Here's an interesting fact... 2 years ago to this day that I am writing this I was in $80,000 debt. I was probably in a worse situation than you are in right now. When you read my emails, look at me now you probably think I'm gifted or I've had an easy ride. 

No way! I remember calling a friend of mine 2 years ago almost in tears on the phone, ready to give up - ready to get a job and be normal. He told me to keen going - said that I should look at other ways. Told me to write a list of what I can do right now to get even a little bit of money in to get the wheels turning. 

What I discovered is the reason that I felt like I needed a job, wanted to run is that I was viewing my mistakes as 'mistakes'. They really werent - as hard as it was, as much as failing felt so bad I had learnt some very valuable lessons that fast tracked my success. 

You are going to make mistakes, the key is viewing them as positive because you wont make them again in the future.

2. Relearning your entire view of the world:

In school I was told I needed to go and work 9-5 to make money. I was taught that the world was a nice place and that if I was smart I could do really well. 

I learnt very quickly that if you want to make any serious cash and have true freedom in this life you need to go out and get it. Hard work always will trump someone who is 'smart'. Someone who is 'smart' yes they have a head-start but in the end it's the person who works the hardest who wins most of the time. 

None of my success came without hard work, no success was given to me I needed to go out and take it. As you go through this business you'll learn that you need to work hard. There is a lot to learn, it's not easy - most people fail. If you don't REALLY want this then you'll never get to where you need to be in order to make good money online.

3. Snakes on a plane:

Not everyone is like you! Not everyone has your view and perspective on the world. I've always been told "Do unto others what you would have done to you" one of the reasons that I carry that mentality is my belief and relationship with God. We're not in heaven though, this is earth and there are people out there who will do wrong by you, who will scam you, con you, build up trust with you and without warning or justification abuse that trust. You can either decide to play that game, catch a plane with the snakes and see where it goes or you can choose that you wont be a part of it. You can choose not to catch that plane and in the end you'll win. Now sure - there are some snakes that because of their 'win at all costs' mindset will get ahead of you, they'll make more than you. In the end though you'll be much happier with yourself and satisfied when you 'make it' on your own terms. The key is to not give in and hold strong to your values or whatever you believe in.

4. Becoming smart with the money I earned:

I've flushed in the first 3 years I was in online marketing about $200,000 down the toilet. I spent it on developers, copywriters, lawyers, accountants... everything! I would spend every cent I made thinking that it's what everyone did to make money. That if I invested all of my money into this business one of my ideas would explode and I'd make millions off of it. In reality most of the time it doesnt work like that. After going into $80,000 debt I realized that in order to make the money I wanted to I needed to first of all become secure and much smarter with my money. 

Since getting into that debt I made a commitment to always ensuring that there was more money coming in than going out. It's one of the reasons I focus so heavily on affiliate marketing through email when most other people focus on doing a BIG launch. I would take consistent money that I make 100% on any day over the risk of putting a lot of money up front then having to rely on a launch going well. When you start making money make sure that you save a good amount - you don't have to reinvest 100% of it to make this business work.

5. Serving my audience above all else:

Here's why many of the marketers that you get sent emails by on a daily basis will never make it to $1,000,000.00 - they don't stand for ANYTHING. Their audience doesn't know who they are? In order to create a good following your audience needs to be able to connect with you. I made a decision that I was going to be a certain person, I would send emails in a certain way, I would communicate to my audience in a certain way and I would build my business in a certain way. I also decided that if someone who was on my subscriber list couldn't connect with me, didn't see the value in what I was doing, didn't believe/trust me then its totally ok for them to unsubscribe. What I'm interested in is continuing to help the audience who does have an interest in what I'm doing, who does relate to me, who sees the person I am and can relate to that. Thats my audience. Then... once you determine who you are, who your audience is you need to be consistent with it. 

Ask me who has taught me the most over the last few years and the answer will always be 'the people I have coached'. I learn more from coaching and teaching someone how to do something for the first time than I do from any other part of this business. I don't know why it is but I experience the most growth when I have the biggest focus my attention more towards someone else than myself.

6. Being Consistent:

Consistency is key. My business has progressed faster in 2015 than any other year because I was consistent. I look over my emails - there was only 1 or 2 weeks where I didn't inform my audience about an offer, I only missed about 8 promotions that I wish I had reviewed, I sent out over 600 emails and made over $1,700,000.00 in affiliate sales as a result. Each and every week I was communicating my message - the same message over and over again. Some people think I'm boring, others think I'm emailing to much. Those people arent the people I am looking to server, they don't connect with what I'm doing. The ones that do appreciate the consistency because they know they can rely on me to keep them informed and up to date with whats happening in the marketplace. Not only was I consistent email marketing though - email marketing is great but if you don't have subscribers it's pointless. I consistently created, launched and built my subscriber list. Every month I worked hard and launched a product. I added this year alone over 25,000 people to my subscriber list. Not through one big launch but through 12 - 16 launches over 2015. I made a commitment early in the year to do a good launch every month and I met that goal.


Once you have consistency this comes naturally - you can feel it. You get into a grove where you're able to achieve much more because you can feel the momentum happening, you can see the leads or money rolling in and it because much easier to do everything. Once you have momentum the key is not to lose it. It's really important in this business to ride momentum for as long as you can. If you take 1 - 2 months off for a holiday that's all it takes for you to lose all of the momentum you've built up. I've seen marketers forget about momentum and take months off then when they get back everything has changed - they've got to rebuild from scratch. When you have momentum EVEN if you're not making money but you're learning a ton then keep it going - its so important if you want to take this business far. 

8. NEVER Give up:

I could have given up the first time I started a business and saw all of my money dry up, or the second or I could have given up when I was in $80,000 debt and had creditors only weeks away from bankrupting me. I didn't - I kept moving and often thats the key. You're learning a lot right now, keep the momentum going, if you find something hard then run through that brick wall. There are times where things will get really hard in this business, your family situation might change, things might happen at work. You must continue to progress, continue to learn and not give up no matter how far things get. If you want to succeed then that is key - most people give up, if they had only continued through the tough times they would have reached where they wanted to be. Heck I did!

9. Not growing to fast - not over-reaching

You have to do more than 1 thing wrong to end up in $80,000 in debt. There was many mistakes and things that contributed to ending up in that circumstance. One of the major reasons was I was dissatisfied with the amount of money I was making. I forgot that it's amazing that I'm even making any money online and I tried to reach to far to fast. I tried to develop software, sell millions of dollars worth overnight and drained every hour of my time chasing it. This drive to push hard and go further meant that I began working with people, on software before I was experienced enough to be doing so. It led to me getting stuffed over in a couple of business deals and almost entirely ruined my reputation online. This alone was one of the biggest lessons I ever learnt - when you make progress, when you start to make money it's great but don't push to hard. Be consistent, build slowly and focus on the customer before your own desires. 

10. Being true to who you are as a person:

I am not perfect - I have made mistakes in this business and I have done wrong by others at times. I found though in the times where I knowingly did something wrong, I took advantage of another person it always came back to bite me. So many disputes, bad situations and trouble could have been avoided had I have stayed true to who I am. When you get that feeling of being uncomfortable or wonder whether you could 'get away' with something think back to whether it's really who you are. If you're not then don't do it, long term you'll have much more success for it without having to look over your shoulder. 

11. Chunking down my goals:

"Making Money Online In 2016" is not a goal. 

It's to big! If you haven't made money before then you'll have no hope with a goal like this. 

Everything you do when you start out needs to be chunked down. I'll write another forum post on this because it's such an important topic. Find out what the 'next step' is in your path to generating your first lead, setting up your first ecommerce website or creating your first opt-in page. Chunk down your goals and set yourself up for success. If you're wanting to create a website. You first goal should be to 'buy a domain' don't get distracted until you've bought the domain! I hope this is making sense. Set yourself up for success, chunk down your goals and make things happen with small victories. "Focus on winning the small battles and you'll win the war".

12. Surrounding yourself with like minded people that share your values:

There's one marketer who when I was going through a rough time - when I was in a lot of debt who encouraged me and helped to build me back up. He said "I've been there and I know what you're going through - keep going". He was a guy who had more than anyone to lose from the situation I found myself in when I business had gone in to debt but unlike others who tried to make my life hell he responded with encouragement. There are always going to be good people out there who share your values, the type of people that you want to work with. Make sure you work with them and not the others that don't 'gel' with what you're trying to achieve. I now work with some very talented people who share my goals, yes there are problems at times but we always sort it out because we have the same understanding. 


These are the main 'lessons' I learnt on my way to $1,000,000. There are others that I'll add here as they pop into my head. Each one of these was learnt from making 'mistakes' and I am so grateful I learnt them when I did. You never stop learning, I don't pretend to know everything and I'm sure there are many people out there who have made far more money than me in a shorter space of time. If someone told me 5 years ago that in 5 years I would become a millionaire I would have been disappointed. Now that I have made it and knowing what I know I would take 5 years to becoming a millionaire in a heartbeat. Everyones journey is different. Hopefully what I've shared with you today can help to save having to make a mistake, or help to skip a step on your road to making money online. 

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What it took to make $1,000,000 online within 5 years
03-01-2016, 02:17 AM
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Thanks for sharing. It is always hard work and consistency that comes up when someone shares their path to success. It is the "mistakes" that lead the way to success. There is no value in having a huge success and not understanding why it came about. That is why most Lottery Millionaires are broke after a few years and why some of the IM who have a one time success disappear again if they did not really understand why the got to where they got to. I wish you and your family all the best for this year and may it be healthy , happy and prosperous. Thanks for all that you do, including this great platform.
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16-01-2016, 07:32 AM
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Hi Sam, Thank much for sharing candidly all the good and bad you have experienced on the way to success. It is possoble to save a lot of mistakes if you listen to others aling the way, my ears are wide open! Best of luck for the year, I hope you double your earnings, and stay as you are now! Cheers! Dave : )

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Sam Bakker (01-16-2016)
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17-01-2016, 02:20 AM
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Thanks for sharing this Sam. I wish you and your family all the best for this year .

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18-01-2016, 05:32 AM
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I appreciate such honesty in a post, thanks Sam. Often it's hard to admit some of the mistakes we have made or 'not quite right' things we have done, and yeah, they always come back to bite us in the bum! Sometimes it's hard but I try to live by "it's always the right time to do what is right".

You don't learn to sail on a calm sea and failing doesn't make us a 'failure' (unless we quit) it's just a learning curve and I think this is why it's so important to be a part of a group such as Bakkers Board. Just glad I am a part of it!

Thanks again!

(I heard somewhere recently that FAIL stands for First Attempt ILearn) 😊

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26-01-2016, 10:28 AM
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Hi Sam, thanks for sharing your experiences. 

I am extremely interested in how to "chunk down your goals and set yourself up for success". 

I am trying to make a break-through this year and I would appreciate some specific actions being defined by yourself that I could follow during the following months. 


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28-01-2016, 03:45 AM
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Hey great question Quanta.

I'm actually in the process of building a program where I've chunked down everything for you on a daily basis. 

Here's how I chunk things down. 

"What do I need to achieve next?"

It could be 'create a website, find a product, create a product' 

Choose 1 - let's say it's create a product. What are the steps to create a product?

1. Brainstorm the idea

2. Confirm the idea

3. Brainstorm the product

4. Plan the project

5. Start creating the slide presentations

6. Find a recording device (Camtasia)

7. Download Camtasia

8. Start creating your first video

9 Start creating your second video

This is how I chunk everything down. I go step to step avoiding all other distractions. Don't worry about the entire picture - deal with that at the time. Only focus on one assignment and complete that. Once you work out these chunks you can move step to step. 

If you don't know the next step then research what it might be - work it out! It's like a video game, what do you need to do next in order to move to the next level in the project you're working on. 

This is how I chunk my actions down. I go action to action - goal to goal and after awhile I complete the entire project then the next goal is "What do I need to do in order to generate my first sale" then you split that into chunks to and complete each and every step finding the information you need when you need it. Thats how I broke in to online marketing and it's how I tackle both easy and difficult tasks today.

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15-03-2016, 08:50 AM
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Great post. Thanks for sharing. I think the 2 biggest take aways from your story that affect me are #6 and #8. Be consistent and Never give up. Its hard to keep going when you are not seeing result initially. I am sure everyone has been through this at some point. I know now that is can take weeks before seeing any results, but when the results start coming in, its the best feeling in the world.

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Sam Bakker (03-20-2016)
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08-04-2016, 05:57 PM
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Awesome post Sam.

A few days ago I'm on the same situation. The thing is keep going and keep pushing.

Thank you god, I found you.


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Sam Bakker (04-08-2016)
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29-12-2016, 03:32 AM
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Sam Bakker, in Your List; Item #2; Confirm your Idea. How or by what process do we confirm an idea, quickly an efficiently? I love to Brain Storm, but need to understand the concept and process of confirmation. And most of all, do it quickly and be able to interpret and possibly scale results.


TC Bradley

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13-05-2017, 06:32 PM
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Thanks, Sam! I found some really encouraging content in this article. 

Future seven-figure affiliate marketer.

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13-08-2017, 01:44 PM
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It's crazy to think that in 2013 you were "struggling" in the online marketing space. In 2013 I was living in China, quite comfortable in my life at the time, but still with dreams for more. Now here we are in 2017, and am finally ready to make this happen.
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16-08-2017, 11:43 AM
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Awesome post Sam...

Many of the sentiments you shared up there is what I also feel.

I want guilt free income...

I am not comfortable doing some of the things I am doing as an IM of some repute.

I will hold on to you and your belief until I can achieve success here....

Like I said, income is not my issue at this point in time. I want an income where I feel extremely proud like Steve Jobs would have felt holding his ipod .
Hoe you understand my sentiment. :)
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