Jamie I.F. is today’s guest on the Niche Pursuits podcast. Jamie started to learn SEO during an internship while studying in university. This internship led him on a path to success, and today, he has several affiliate websites earning him over $30,000 each month.
Most of his income comes from two websites, with the others being starter sites. And he is averaging around 220,000 page views for a website he launched less than four years ago.
With around 420 articles, it’s exciting to hear his thoughts regarding strategy and how the site evolved over the years.
He shares in-depth advice on all aspects of building a successful affiliate website, ranging from how he verifies and decides on a niche market to his thoughts on retiring once he earns enough money — no stone is left unturned. Jamie truly goes in deep on the topics.
Moreover, we get insight and strategy for keyword research, tools he uses in his business, and his unique approach to targeting competitive keywords.
A big part of Jamie’s success and the process is through creating great content, and some of the advice and tips he shares will help many of you looking to get traffic with content marketing.
He shares profound advice on creating great introductions to articles and the importance of great titles. In addition, he has a five-step approach to creating content with a psychological approach included.
Some of the Other Topics Discusses With Jamie I.F. include:
- Niche verification
- How to produce affiliate-style content
- Outline approach for updating old content
- How to create the best workable introductions
- Structure of an affiliate post
- His vision for building a team
- Mistakes he has made along the way
- Topical authority
- Thoughts on the Google algorithm
- The tool he uses to find keywords that other popular tools may miss
- FAQs and the benefits of using them
- Plus, a whole lot more
SEO is essential, but there’s more to building a successful site than just using SEO and long tail keywords and backlinks. For example, creating a great user experience also plays a part in ranking well and keeping visitors satisfied, and this is a big part of what Jamie I.F. shares on the podcast.
As always, taking notes is recommended, so have a pen and paper handy because there’s a lot of solid advice from a successful website owner.
Enjoy the episode.
Links & Resources
watch the interview:
read the transcription:
Jared: Welcome back to the niche pursuits podcast. My name is Jared Bowman. And today I’m joined by Jamie. Welcome on board,
Jamie: It’s nice to be here. Thank you for having me on Jared.
Jared: Perfect. Very excited about this one. Obviously at this point, the headlines will, you know, be speaking for themselves. People are gonna be kind of leaning in and wanting to really understand the nuts and bolts and the details behind a lot of the success you’ve had and how you’ve managed to do it in a rather quick time period.
So we’ll, we’ll dive into all that. I just wanna say at the outset we’re. We’re gonna zero and I’m gonna hit you with as many tough questions as I can think of to try to get as much as much outta you. But before we get into that, give us some background on you. You’re young, but catches up to speed on where you are today, but maybe some backstory as well.
Jamie: Sure. So I discovered what SEO was when I was on my internship year at uni, you can do a three year course in the UK, or you can do a four year course with a, a third year in industry. And I just sort of sat and. Club too much and was too hungover to actually apply anywhere. So I just took the last job available, like months after he was supposed to have secured it, which ended up being in Paris.
And there, it was at this, this publisher in Paris. And they had, you know, some traffic, they were grant, they had social media and whatever. And turns out there was one page in the analytics that had like four times more. Page views and everything else that was in like on the site. And so I couldn’t understand that because I thought you go homepage then something else, I couldn’t understand the concept of being discovered organically.
And so that fascinated me in my ways to figure it out, ended up buying. I think it was four books on the topic and just sort of voraciously reading those. Obsessed with SEO, graduated from uni, started the project that is called if though, so for the Jamie, if that I currently go by on Twitter, so then ran out of money, needed to make loads of money.
SEO was a really interesting thing. I started without much sort of expectations and I got really lucky in here. We are.
Jared: That, that is a truncated version of a very, very interesting story. I love that you fell into SEO. What was your original, you know, kind of internship supposed to be about while you were there in
I think they just needed an English native speaker to write translations of their are schools. They already, it was a very European focused publishers. So they had a Spanish, German and French, and like in English was sort the afterthought. And it was my job to sort of. Write it in English. And, and I couldn’t write then, like, I didn’t know what, like active voices or anything was like, it was a real trial by fire thing.
But I dunno if I end up here now without that experience, I think they also illegally underpaid me. Like, there’s something called a con like you have to sign like a document that makes you like a, not a real person. So they paid me like illegally, like under the rates, but I’ll take it for, for getting here now.
Jared: exp the experience. Yeah, I know there’s a lot of conversation globally, but certainly. Nationally here in the states about internships and the pay there. How receptive were they? Did you bring some of this SEO findings to them? Did they have an SEO team? Were you able to work with the SEO team or were you basically just on your own with a couple of you know, like SEO for dummies books in the evening trying to figure, trying to figure it out.
Jamie: It was mostly to be fair. They these kinds of things, they don’t move quickly. And especially when you come in, you’re only here for six months. You’re not gonna be taken as seriously. And I didn’t expect to be, but I think they did listen like as much as they could certainly be like, well, you know, there’s these opportunities here’s X, Y, and Z.
And so it was interesting. Like, I, I, I don’t think that they were like necessarily. Against SEO. It’s just you, it’s not like a startup where you can pivot like on a dime, but just go do the other direction instantly. Did
Jared: did you get to do any SEO work while you were in, at your internship? Or did you just study this on the side and kind of stay focused on the tasks they had originally planned
Jamie: for you?
So a lot of it was interviews with people that were doing stuff in Paris and, you know, the surrounding places. I think some of them went outside of France as well. And so they’d rank for the brand name or if the brand like put it on their large Facebook account, you see a big influx, but it was mostly brand related or, you know, interview related rather than sort of just optimizing like on page stuff.
Jared: Makes sense. Makes sense. Yeah. It’s, it’s amazing to see so many brands nowadays now that now that you know, maybe, you know something about SEO, I know some SEO, SEO, and you look at some big brands and, and you see that their SEO is terrible or they’re not even really doing SEO. And you think to yourself, Oh, how is that?
If only they could just give someone the charge to go to go take care of things, but it sounds like a brand of that sort.
Jamie: Yeah. I mean, they do. I’m sure they’re doing fine now. I, I, I, I’m very grateful. I’ll leave it there.
Jared: Good. Fair enough. Well that, that’s not really what we wanna talk about anyways. I don’t wanna skip your, the rest of your story, but I, I, I think there’s just so much to talk about here.
Take us to the moment. That you decided to dive into SEO and maybe give us a little backstory into what you chose, why you chose to build websites, as opposed to maybe freelancing or getting a job at an agency or et cetera, et cetera, et cetera. Like what the kind of birth of your SEO on your own.
Jamie: I’m too selfish to ever go work for someone.
I need to feel up. I, the ownership over the results. I’m an equity man. I don’t really care about the salary. I just wanna feel like I’ve built something for the future. So I was very much not in faith. Like I was always, I could’ve done business. I just had done a different business, but I didn’t discover what SEO was.
And I came at uni and I wanted to, well, I was either gonna be a screenwriter or I was gonna start the social project that I wanted to do to help the less fortunate in London. But I tried it. We were there trying to, to make, you know, make an impact. I, I know a lot more about marketing than I used to. I think it would’ve been better if I’d done, started now, but I didn’t then ran out of money and just realized that to do something, to get to the scale where it would self fund.
You just needs. So like, I, I reckon it’s around 2 million pounds. I was like, well, this isn’t gonna work at the same time. I had developed that interest in SEO and I wanted to start these sites and I took it more seriously three years ago when I graduated. And so SEO is a means to an end. Like I can be sort of ruthlessly transactional when I’m going to affiliate partners.
Like I want more money here cause I just I’m. I’m here for a few years to get my millions. And then I have no hesitation with retiring from SEO after that. And now here we are like and then, so for the websites, rather than going freelancing, I just think you know, revenue is like a fle thing, but an asset value, like that’s real.
So it’s never been about profit. It’s just been about getting the revenues up to build that asset as a, a set level at the 40, 42 X mark or whatever.
Jared: Its, you knew pretty quickly. The, like all the numbers behind, you know, website building in terms of whether you wanna focus on a monthly cash flow as a goal, or an actual valuation and, and whatnot.
So very smart. I, I, I, I think that might be an underpinning to a lot of your success just. The depth of knowledge that you seem to bring about before you even had dove into this space at that point you know, a lot of people, their first website is very, you know, happenstance. Let’s talk about, I mean, and just to, to give people the summary again, we’ll, we’ll mention it.
We mentioned it already in the intro, but you’re basically at a point now we’ll fast forward to today and then we’ll start to work backwards. You’re at a point where your collection of websites or your portfolio of websites is earning you over $30,000 a month. That was the number in June. We’re recording, you know, Midsummer.
And so that, that obviously could probably change and hopefully go up for you going forward. You’ve got a number of sites, but. From what you’ve shared, it’s basically two sites that are earning the bulk of that income. And you started these if I have my, my notes correctly, about three years ago, does that kind of put us where we’re at today?
Jamie: So I started the first, well, I registered the domain probably four years ago, so I don’t wanna mislead anyone and that this was completely fresh, but it was very much not a monetizable niche website when I started taking it seriously. So three years of, but even then, I think I’ve only been full-time for probably a year because I spent four months working as a receptionist for my mom’s physio clinic when the pandemic hit and everyone couldn’t go in anymore to try and keep the business alive, as well as you know, I’ve worked from startups those Some people might have heard of it.
It’s now called boot.dev to help people learn backend computer science and like data strokes and algorithms. So I’ve spent my last. Going to other places. And I don’t wanna think about how much money I could have been making if I just stuck to one sort of thing, but say three years of taking it seriously on this main site, the second site that makes around $7,200 it’s made in July.
These companies can change by a little bit for like, you know, right at the beginning of the end of the month. But that one was the domain was related neither November or December, 2020. So that’s more recent and the others are much smaller. They’re still in that embryonic stage where they haven’t hit.
Big rocket shit where they start going up yet. And I haven’t really devoted the right time. Like the more though I see these, the algorithm changes on Google. The more difficult it is to write like a hundred sites, just hands off is you need that care to like the, the of it to me is what delivers the big value.
So I tell everyone do one site and then I don’t do, as I say, but I really do think that the pay is to really focus in on one thing and make it amazing. Still, even though I have a portfolio. Well,
Jared: you did start with one site if I’m doing my math, right. I mean, we’re sitting here in 2022 at time of recording registered the site four years ago.
So 20 18, 20 19, and then worked on that for a while until your second site, November, 2020, just, I mean, less than two years ago. So to some degree you really doubled down on one site is, is this main site that’s or the main, you know, earner? Is that, is that, is that a good analogy?
Jamie: Yeah, the main size, definitely, you know, it pays for the investments.
We’re now trying to make in the other ones that grow our portfolio. And without that without the profit, from that, we wouldn’t be able to do all of those other things. It definitely brings in the lion share of the revenue. It’s the most mature in that, like when you’re growing aside from the beginning is not that uncommon to double every month or like, you know, go up by 50% when you are going up from five to seven K to 11 K traffic a month is hit the level where the.
It’s fairly mature, but like on the first page for a lot of the most competitive terms, the most monetizable terms, and really to go any higher, you have to go from the current Dr. Of like, you know, under 60 to like 85 before you can do anything else. So I need to figure out what the plan is, whether that is something to, you know, liquidate and try and just take.
A million dollars or whatever to, to put back into that and then have that set aside or whether I wanna roll the dice again and keep going on that and try and build like a two to 5 million pound brand. But again, that makes me feel like I’m being a bit greedy because I’ve told myself you’re in this game to do this and get out.
So it is like the Lord of the rings ring. Once you get to a level where like, it’s, then I’ve never even seen 10,000 pounds in my life before. It’s, it’s all crazy monopoly money to me. But I understand the Lord of the rings ring when it’s like, oh, but I. Keep going, it could go up, buy another $10,000 a month.
It’s it’s very silly. Really? It’s. So far
Jared: city, it’s a great question in terms of like, you know, when to keep going versus when to sell and move on. And we’ve had a number of different people on you should listen to it. Actually, it was Greg from empire flippers. He has this whole model around the asset flywheel approach.
He calls it and when to take money off the table, when to reinvest it, where do reinvest it, where do we invest it? How much takeoff? It’s very interesting. So I will include a link to that in the show notes. And but anyways, Sorry, pitching aside. so, so let’s, let’s go back. Let’s go back. Let’s go back to the beginning.
I wanna ask you some questions about, about this niche. Obviously you don’t have to reveal the niche, but you know, you had this site that had been aged a bit about a year old, you started publishing on it. You started making a go of it. What can you tell us about the niche and the selection process you used?
How did you validate this? The project to go into, give us a little more backstory there.
Jamie: Sure. So I’m not, you know, a, a talented link builder or I’m not really even a talented like writer for, you know, information or stuff. You know, I can hit feature snippets, but it’s not like, you know, some people, they hit them all day and that’s their model.
So what all I can really do. Affiliate content. So for me to, to verify and validate a niche, it’s got to be something that I could sell products in and convert, and then, you know focus on the CRO side and build the custom blocks that can compliment things. And the, the, the very. The varied elements of a buyers guide basically is what I specialize in.
And so I’m interested in all these sites that are doing really, really well off just ads, but I’ve never been a high velocity publisher to know and make that work. You know, I’ve seen, you know, the John Jutras and people like that who have just got crazy volume and they’re spending $30,000 a month. But I guess I’ve always been more bespoke, low volume.
We don’t really publish that much, but we just try and make sure everything’s a hit, gets a return. So yeah, low volume. Affiliate high sales. I I’ve never been able to, to, to make any other part of it work well, hopefully in the future, you know, if you can do both it’s it was a good result. Did you
Jared: specifically target this niche because you know, maybe selling like high products or high price products, sorry, or because you found some really attractive affiliate programs or was it just, Hey, you know, people buy stuff in a snitch and that’s, that’s what it’s all about.
So let’s just go down
Jamie: this. So I’m not re like some people really value doing what. They love. And that’s a real big factor and I don’t really have that. Like, it’s just all, like, I don’t mind grinding out on anything. I’ll I’ll do anything. Like it’s not a problem to me. It’s just hours spent, you know, Devo something.
So, you know, it’s just normal day to day stuff. Really, without being more specific, it’s nothing flashy, nothing special and might be something that someone might struggle to dedicate two years of their life writing or day on and writing 2000 words a day out just because the topic is the topics may be.
You know, it’s not writing about a star wars or something that people would love to do. It’s more. What’s the right word. It’s not, it’s not exciting stuff, but I’m, it can be exciting. You can make anything excited. The job of a writer is to make it absolutely, you know, glue eyeballs to the page and make it riveting.
Jared: If I were reading between the lines, you picked a very unsexy niche that has a lot of money behind it. and you’re winning because you’re sticking to something that is again, if I were reading within lines, not that much fun to write.
Jamie: I couldn’t possibly comment in .
Jared: Okay. Fair enough. Keyword research. How do you research these topics in the beginning?
What have you learned along the way? You know, you’re pretty new and raw at keyword research. I would, I don’t wanna assume you made some mistakes because your, your record shows and speaks for itself, but you know, on the nature of keyword research, what have been the winners and how did you go about finding those.
Jamie: So I’m not one of those masters that can just target, you know, zero search info stuff that actually gets like 5,000 hits. I’ve never been able to just like, you know, have the, the, see through vision of what our keywords really were. So I mostly take, ah, Fs and the like a face value basically, and just.
You know, if it’s got commercial intent, if it’s got traffic. And I think that there’s an ROI on doing that. And do I think the, we best place to be able to rank or do that mistakes I made earlier in, in like last year, remember is just but you can have a feel for something you just know when something’s gonna work and that develops over time, but it doesn’t scale because if you have a team and you can’t articulate what, how to do something And you are basing it on field, then it’s not gonna scale.
And so I made a lot of mistakes in trying to hit that next level, where you’ve had like people with the you know, with brief other people create these, these brief documents based on the article. And a lot of them, like, you know, they’ve said they might have been too long or they missed search intent.
Or for example, I remember we used to and I’m not in this niche now, but we used to work with a. This is the only climb work I’ve ever done. and they were in like the, like the pets niche. And we, we did one thing or it was like hamsters or something. And it was something to do with hamster food, I think, or some sort of food.
And the, if you Googled it five out of the term results on the first page were food for health. And if you missed that, you would’ve just thought it was a standard buyer guide when actually they were asking for, to round health. And so it was Y and way out itself. And when they writing that was too long, it only needs to be about 1300 words.
We actually did like 3000. So that itself is burning money, but also we completely missed such intent because it, if you’ve just seen the keyword, you’d have gone, that’s a buyer guide, but on closer inspection, which takes the refining of you know, not, I guess it’s part of keyword research, but it’s.
Keyword investigation is that actually, as it seems so that’s not the only mistakes. I don’t wanna single that out. Like it’s it’s definitely been a learning process. I’ve actually, instead of targeting like the ones that I can think rank for quickly, I’ve always just targeted the most competi.
Did one to the beginning because something stuck with me, the Gale from authority hacker said where the average rail that ranks these super, super, super competitive terms is something like four years old. And it’s like, well, I’m not gonna rank for anything on a fresh domain. So I might as well start aging these out.
And like, you know, if we’re gonna, if I’m gonna do four years in prison, I may as well start now. And so you know, and I don’t mind not making money up front. I’m more interested in the long term gains. And if that puts me in a better position in three years time, I’ll do.
Jared: Wow. You said a lot of stuff there.
I wanna circle back. There’s a lot of good stuff in there. So many people let’s start with one thing. So many people will start a site and focus on the most. Or the most low, the lowest competition keywords that they can find because you know, fresh domain, new website, that’s about all they can probably rank for.
And then as they build up their traffic and as they build up their momentum, they start going after the most competitive terms. Now I love what you said because you’re right. The more competitive the term, the longer typically it needs for that URL to be live, you know, typically speaking. And so you go after the most competitive terms or have gone after those.
What kind of success did you find with this site? Was it, was, would it rank for those really competitive terms fairly quickly or was your initial success on lower competition stuff? And now you’ve kind of matured into it with the high competition stuff you wrote in the beginning. Does that, does that question make sense?
Jamie: Yeah, I don’t know if it would work in 2022, the first success we ever got was around, you know, Christmas, 2000 and. 19 to 20 uh, and when the first thing took off and that got us up to like 400 users a day or whatever, and then that in itself was the sort of. You know, the structure that we could build on and then build to a thousand or whatever.
From there that was a competitive keyword. And now we struggles to rank for that nowadays, like three years later. And it is bigger than ever now. So I think it, the times were different back then. So I can’t speak for this method works now. And we, you know, on our smaller sites, I’ve done the same thing.
Just. Because I think it’s good to get like your top level stuff in so that you can internally link all the way down rather than trying to like patch it together later on and, you know, send it up the chain and whatever. I just, it doesn’t sit right with me. It probably works fine, but I just like, for my own.
Peace of mind to just know that everything’s going like down the right way. And it all makes sense to Google and myself. So we, we, the first site blew up off those competitive ones, but I can’t say that that is the, I wouldn’t even recommend it. And if your first starting. Or even if you are like a year in and you’re starting a new site, I still wouldn’t recommend doing that.
Cuz I think you want that first dopamine hit of your first sale or your first ad revenue and your first whatever to keep going with the perseverance. Cuz I can understand how like off putting it can be to right into the ether and nothing’s coming. So my tip of anyone else, if you’re not, if you haven’t got big budgets and you’ll find waiting three years still start with the lower competition stuff.
But I do go the other way now because my priorities are D. I love the
Jared: term you used the prison of, of waiting for the results to come in you know, a 20, 22 conversation that comes up a lot, at least here on this podcast. And with other people that are building websites is this topic of topical authority.
This concept I’ll say of topical authority and. It sounds to me like maybe what you were doing to some degree was building out a topic or a silo and building out the authority in that. And some people will write the big topics, even though they don’t necessarily think they’re gonna rank for them, just because it kind of completes the topical silo and allows Google to see that you’re an authority in that.
So it maybe. Accidentally you were doing that before. It was a thing, you know, back in, back in 20 18, 20, 19
Jamie: yeah. And in the same way, I’m fine writing a, a page that I don’t think we’ll ever make back what we spent to make it. Like, I’m fine with that. It’s not, I don’t think of them as isolated entities.
They’re all interconnected. And that thing though, while it might not get you, your, whatever you spend on it, It may mean that, that other post that’s very profitable is one place higher that you can’t really quantify it on the first commissioning of that piece of content, but it’s the things you can’t see that, that, that, that end up, you know, becoming profitable over time.
So I’m a big fan of just building up. The authority across the topic and covering things that can be linked to other relevant things. They can almost act as landing pages as well for the places you can, you can write low value things that don’t get many pages with the express intent of fund, linked them to the, the higher value ones as well.
So I don’t mind building out. At a loss leader sort of style the top of the authority within a site. I
Jared: think it’s I think it’s a really good point. I mean, I, I, there, I haven’t done any research on it, but I host this podcast every week and there does seem to be a connection between hiring sites and the willingness to go into the depths of topics.
Around something around a silo that even though they might not think they’re gonna rank for them, it is best for the user. It’s best for the authority. And it’s best for the website as a whole. And they’re willing to make that investment again. I haven’t done any research on that, but just sitting here in this seat and interviewing people, there is definitely a connection there to some degree.
So people should listen to that and explore it for their own, you know, their own endeavors obviously. But, but it’s a, it’s a really good point. I really like the
Jamie: point you’re. Yeah, I think it makes sense as well. I don’t think that Google designs its algorithm to be super scalable. So if you’re doing the things that no one else, you know, who’s like the bean count as a deciding offers in itself an ROI, then you’re putting yourself ahead.
I think it’s, I don’t think it. It makes sense if I was right in the algorithms at Google to make it. So you could just commission a thousand sites, hire people, write the exact pieces you want rank for those. And then just collect the checks. They want expertise. They want the, they want the authority, they want the trustworthiness they want.
And that you can only do that. If you you’re on priority. Isn’t. Instant returns. You there’s a level of like delay gratification in creating something that has more meaning than just the content is the painstaking internal links that are like based around where you actually know the user wants to go and, you know, puts together.
Not just like, you know, semantically related things, but ones that actually were based on the person’s journey and things like that. And so I think there’s more to it than just this will double my money. This one will have my money, so I’m not gonna do the second article. Right.
Jared: Great thoughts. You teased it a bit.
I wanna talk about the structure of your articles. You said basically, if there was an area you specialize in, you don’t specialize in keyword research, you don’t specialize in niche selection. You don’t specialize in zero volume keyword. We’ve got a lot of things you don’t specialize in, although you’re making 30 grand a month, but one thing you did admit that you specialize in is how you structure your buying guides, your, your, your review content, your articles.
Can you outline some of the nuances of the structure that, that these, that these articles.
Jamie: Sure. Sure. And I haven’t invented one of these myself, like I’ve taken bits and pieces from elsewhere that I, if I ever mentioned something that I didn’t come up with as unique thought, I’ll credit them in, in this next part here.
So the intros to me are like, and I, I put this in a thread yesterday. That’s sort of a microcosm of your entire article. And if you’re clever about it, and you understand that a lot of people are in the rush. You can do like 50, 40% of your conversions just in that 10, second barrier when people are saying, okay, I built trust, this is what you should do, done, close them off.
And then the rest of it is for the people that need to be more coaxed into understanding and going through the, the buying process. And they need to trust you. We have a. A framework, which I need to publish. So everyone can use it called the sphere framework, which is the five things that you should put in an intro.
So the first is the search intent, like, which is kind of the a as well. The, the a and SP is audience P’s pain points, negative emotions, way, much higher and a reader’s mind. And there’s like loss of version sort of style that prospect theory in the economics covers you, people are worried about making mistakes, which you can inform in your title as well.
Like if you write an affiliate buyers guide, you can write the five best. Whatever and two to avoid, because you wanna know which ones you don’t wanna buy more than you like, people are so scared of the embarrassment or the loss of money to make the wrong choice that you wanna, you can capitalize on that psych psychologically.
So you wanna, so S is search intent. He is pain points. He is expertise, just, you know, standard. You want to drop and based on my 15 years experience with this, you know, or something that you can draw that, that makes you. Trust that you trust the person instantly try and infer it. But if you have to show, I mean, if you have to tell rather than show it is what it is, A’s audience just really understanding who it’s for.
We’ve missed the completely before, where we’ve put really high price products in an art school. Not realizing that the, it was clearly like, not about, it was about like bargains and our, what is off. Rapport. So you still want to be likable. You want to be trustable and people need to identify with you.
And if you can create that sort of emotional connection, as well as writing with like very evocative visual imagery, like language, as soon as you bring the rapport and the story together, they will never leave the page. Because as soon as like, like, for example, if I say, and in my third year of uni, You’ll never guess what happen look.
And obviously I’m not gonna tease like that, but you, you, you think, okay, I’m not leaving now. I want to know what happens next. As soon as you give people a reason to connect with something they’ll stay. So the intro fast sale build report expertise they trust use of it. If you have these CTAs right at the top of your top one, top two, top three picks.
And I treat the affiliate stuff like like casting for a film, you have your main protagonist, which is the best option overall. And then you Don. I think this is the state that most people make. In my opinion, they just go on the other bias guides and go, okay, those are the 10 products that appear everywhere.
But they don’t play a role. They don’t have a role in your film. They play the same role rather than offering an alternative. So you need to, pre-cast your, pre-cast your film, and you need to find the right things that offer a viable, like they’re an antagonist versus your overall topic. Picks protagonist in that one might be the best budget.
Pick one might be the best professional pick one might be the best for a niche use. If you are I’m looking at a microphone right now. If the microphone is best for podcasting, if the one is best for. Talking to your friends on, on, on PlayStation or whatever it is. And you precast those based on your knowledge of the audience, and then you can play them off against each other, segment them like a lot of buyers guys make the mistake of just saying, everything’s good.
This one’s great. It also does this. And it’s like, okay, well I’m not anymore. Educated or confident to make a decision than I was when I started reading this article. But if you can tell me which ones are nine out 10 for this particular person, but not for this person, I’ll trust you because you can make a confident value judgment.
And that it’s not for someone. And I’ll also feel like he understands me. She understands me because you’ve said. This is for this. And I am this type of person. You understand what my needs are. You’ve made an attempt to solve my pain points. Now I feel more confident to move through the buying process and click by.
And it also depends as well. What kind of like, you know, is it a high ticket ice, more, a low ticket. It is low ticket. Like you don’t have to do this much selling, I guess, put them in front of them. You know, you, you write em differently. But for high ticket stuff, there’s much more. Expansion of points and really visualizing the scenario in which you can solve someone’s problem in the most visual and like story led way possible.
Jared: Wow. That was a five minute deep dive. And that was the most detailed, deep dive on writing you know, affiliate style content, I think I’ve ever heard. That was brilliant. There’s so many things in there. You, so you actually have, because intros are, let start with the intro part that you talked about.
Intros are this thing that I think I’m gonna speak for so many. Content creators and, and not just affiliate content creators. I mean, you know, marketers in general that intros are just this thing where it’s like, what do we do with this? You know? There’s I still
Jamie: go through stuff now that I’m like, oh,
Jared: I, I intros are just like, you just kind of throw it up there.
Right? You’re like, well, you gotta put something there. You can’t just start the article. But your framework, it’s really powerful. And it’s based on. In depth, longstanding marketing knowhow, and tried and trusted psychological techniques. I just wanna really quickly read it out loud again. I took notes.
I’ll be implementing this that’s for sure. It’s spear search intent, pain points, expertise, audience, rapport. And you’re exactly right. Every one of those. If you get it wrong, can really turn a portion of your, your, your readership away. So I think that’s really great. I, I also wanted to highlight that throughout what you talked about.
Maybe ask you a couple questions about it. You’re not just whether it’s the title, whether it’s the intro, whether it’s the actual review of the content itself, whether it’s the way you structure it. You’re not just talking about positive. You’re really zeroing on negatives. You mentioned in a title like five, the five best and the two worst or the two you don’t wanna buy.
You talked about in your content. This is not for you. This is not for you. This is for this type of person, maybe. How do you go about writing that in a way that doesn’t turn people away? How do you go about researching that? So you actually can distinguish those things and then translate that into the content.
Jamie: I think that most people are too scared of losing a sale. They never make a sale. yep. Yep. There’s like you know, people have no reason to trust this third party is obviously biased by what percent like commissions they’re getting. And so there’s a, there’s a bigger win to win. Someone’s what we, we call it rapport.
Like the honesty, the authenticity to me, you go, okay, this person’s not self motivated to just maximize. Time on this page to, to convert me into whatever’s paying the best, but the actual times ago. But if you don’t want a microphone, that’s gonna be good for zoom calls. That’s completely fine. You might not be the professional type, but if you’re a big gamer and you like to talk to your friends when call of ju or rocket league, this one is perfect because it translates better into the other person’s head.
I dunno what I’m talking about on this topic, but it’s important. I think that the, to be able to say, what’s not for something. Conveys confidence. And you can’t have confidence without expertise because you know, whenever you don’t know something, you get vague details because you can’t commit, you know, it’s a police interrogation sort of stuff.
You they’ll make, you make the mistake that, that she did the crime. So the, the preciseness, the yeah, and the accuracy and detail of something, you can only say with confidence and that in itself conveys knowledge and that makes someone trust you. So it’s the. I am not biased because I’m telling you something and you may be biased.
Like you may, you know, be incentivized to send them some way as well as taking a confident value, judgment that we ask all our, our writers to do that requires, you know, proper knowledge and ideally product testing, to be able to, to come up with that, it is much less applicable. And I think that’s what Google wants as well, because it’s not designed to be replica.
I don’t believe it’s designed to be scalable. It’s designed so that really committed niche people can build careers outta their niche. If they can add that extra level that, that, that intimacy with their niche that no one
Jared: else. It’s very interesting. It reminds me a little bit, I have a background in sales and it reminds me a little bit of a little bit of the concept of downselling, you know, and, and actually not trying to sell necessarily your largest item your largest or, or, or to try to sell straight to their highest budget.
But to actually downsell a bit and say, I don’t think you need this. I don’t think you need to spend that much to get these results. Now, if you wanted to spend that much, we could get maybe these results, but given what you’ve told me, you probably only need to spend this much as an example. Yeah. Very powerful too, because I’ve, I, I know that from, from my experience in, in running an agency, you talked about CR storylines around protagonists and antagonists and, and translating that into product.
Is that something that you map out ahead of time or does it sort of just come as part of the article being written? Is it just part of SOP, you know, standard operating procedure, make sure to make a storyline out of the way that we talk about these products? Or is that something you guys are actually kind of researching before you go to write actually planning an maybe an outline stage or ahead of
Sure. So I haven’t got this fully written down. It’s, it’s a newer development that we haven’t fully implemented. Got a half baked written thing that will go up on our site based on like the different stages of levels between the five stages of affiliate mastering content that I have tried to differentiate between that we’re trying to get to the fifth stage.
The fourth will get you number one, or most like even media competitive things. But number five is like the, the. Movie casting, antagonist story led affiliate content. And so when I say story, I don’t necessarily mean that it’s like a three X structure within this thing where you take them through an entire thing.
I think that’s impossible to do. And the good thing about affiliate content for most writers, I think they’ll find is that it’s not. As difficult as writing a 2000 word informational piece that has to sort of fit together and segue into pieces. There’s sort of like 10 mini stories. There are only a hundred, 150, 200 words, and that makes them easier to write because you just have to sprint through each one and you can do it, but you can have miniature stories that you convey and you tell people that within each product and they can be interrelated in that.
You can, and you should compare the, if, you know, if you are, if you have three products that are on the lower end, you should compare between those, you might not want to then join them onto a higher pricing because the person that’s interested in the higher pricing, isn’t probably interested in the lower price thing.
And so you, you keep your story separate, but the story in that’s comparison which kind of in itself creates drama because there’s tension. You’re gonna go with this one or this one, but there’s also Just creating the more accurate your words and the more active, the, the scenario, the stronger, the mental image in someone’s mind and the stronger, the mental image, the more that they’re involved with you, they’re walking down the road with you as you demonstrate this thing.
So if, instead of like I, I mentioned with the microphone, whilst you playing call of cheat with your friends, if you can identify with that, then you’re already halfway there. Mm-hmm so it’s really just about naming the most visual. Relatable scenarios, as well as illustrating the, the, the comparison points between different things that you might not be able to do that with, which in itself is a, a pain point or, you know, ups the tension with that.
And the drama is important. So it is not a cohesive three X structure type of, you know, article, but you can, you can create elements of story within the sort of microcosm of each product. I appreciate
Jared: that. That’s that, that that’s really clarifying. That’s great. The, the way that you are writing your content, it sounds rather in depth.
It, again, I’m just, I’m just from listening to you for the last 45 minutes, it sounds like it’s quite the process. Would you say that your content is better than anybody else’s out there on that topic? Is that something you were striving for or is it more good enough if you know what I.
Jamie: I wouldn’t say it’s the best.
We’re trying to get it to be the best. And so like, if I say something like this, it doesn’t mean that all, you know, 500 articles that we put out have been raised to this standard. We have, I think the RA reason that we also overachieve compared to high Dr. Sites is because. A lot of the stuff that we wrote three years ago, we’ve since gone back and republished every six months since then.
So it’s almost like a living, breathing modular thing that is changing over time. And I think that’s attracted to Google because it’s more likely to meet the person’s needs because it’s been adjusted for each time that we live in 2021, 2022. And they’re like so I’m not sure it’s the best I hope it is, but we wanted to get there.
We’re adopting these things. We’re trying. Move as quickly as possible and create, but you can’t also do that and then do it at scale because there’s a lot of training that involves to understand how to write these things or how things are done. As well as like a really intimate knowledge of both the niche and the products that is difficult to do without, even if you haven’t tested that particular product, if you haven’t tested a similar one, to be able to bounce your own ideas off, to be able to create like EVOC.
Scenarios with which, with which you can base the recommendation for that particular thing on
Jared: what, what do you do when you go back and update articles? What, what does that look like?
Jamie: I’m most likely upset about how they work.
Jared: fair enough. I understand that. Feel that too. How did I publish this? My
Jamie: gosh. Oh, this is number three.
So yeah, it’s some, we have like a, a framework it’s on notion. I can find it. If you gimme a moment.
Jared: Yeah, go for it. I can wait.
Jamie: okay. So the first thing’s the title, can we improve it versus the competition and check obviously, if the title fits the we’ve a problem like where it’s just, you know, get on important selling point at the end using, you know, whatever bit of strategy want to, to hit.
For example, if the article is about cheap, Whatever the product is, you know, the keyword before the preface is it is cheap. How do you then structure a title to be better? Well, in my opinion, if you are going off of something cheap, you are probably wanting to make sure that you are getting the cheap thing that is still gonna be okay.
Like I’m, I’m saving money, but like I’m not making a big mistake. I’m not buying. Buying, you know, buy twice instead of just buying right the first time. Yep. So you can put something in the title, like best cheap microphones that actually work well or that won’t break in a day, you won’t, you know, and that’s that, that in itself has rapport building because you someone goes, thank you.
That person has answered what I want. I’m worried that I’m gonna make a bad decision. You have told me that I won’t. Thank you for making me feel safe. Or if it’s alternatives, you know, most of the alternatives things are basically you know, I want this product, but I don’t wanna pay for, can you give something of comparable quality without me having to pay for it?
So you can go seven best alternatives to X product. You know, budget alternatives that are even more powerful or whatever it is that you are trying to sell. So the time is the first thing and that we have only got like decent at that in the last few months. So there’s a lot of real optimizing we’ve done with that.
We reoptimize the intro, like I mentioned to you is a, is a microcosm within the article and it should both illustrate what you are, you know, run into the top picks of what you are recommended and play off. What the alternatives are versus the main product, and then mention what’s coming up, you know, not just We are not just a best article.
We’ll also tell you that two less known tips for being able to use X thing as well as mentioning what you should consider the you know, the buying guide and, you know, various other things so that if any of those particular things, interest them, they mentally commit to reading the whole thing. When we republishing stuff, it’s also, we’ll just go back through the keywords.
You know, an AHF check is standard, but you can also go on things like, answer the public to find things that don’t seem to come. On ah, Fs. Even if they don’t have search volume, I think just those different semantically related things can inform new topics. Like new headings that, you know, in the future might be a feature snippet that gets you 20 search volume.
But also I think that makes you just a more overall powerful and relevant article that in itself can make you rank higher. It can also find you new segments, for example. You might search up best microphones and then it, you know, you’ve just got best microphones for gaming, but then you go on to the public and something that didn’t come on HS for best microphones for windows 10, or for Matt comes up that you didn’t know.
It’s like, oh, that’s a new. It’s a new, conversational thing that even though I’m probably not gonna make any extra seller because no one’s searching for it. That is a segment that I can play off. Now that is, is of non zero value to the person they’ll still gain from that. So it’s worth thinking about, so there are, you know, it’s not just about search boarding with the keywords.
I think as well as for any feature snippets we can hear and any keyword that competing arts scores we use server sometimes for sort of just making things semantically more similar We also wanna be a level above, and server’s really good at getting you to the level, but then if everything’s the same level, then the idea that we usually just take it.
And so we wanna do that while also combining our own bag of tricks, do that. We’ll often bring in, we’ve got custom blocks. We had made who generate blocks use We use that on our site. And so those things are for CTAs pros and cons round up and sort of stuff. We’ll add any back, any real reviews that we’ve done since then, to be able to add the products which I need to do now with the product review update, rolling out as well.
As well as switching out any products that aren’t sold, ones that are manufacturer struggling to keep in stock, as well as anyones that aren’t selling well, because it’s the business you. No, you’ve gotta pay the bills and we’ll have a look at FAQs just today. I’ve been told that I might have been doing FAQ schema wrong because I’m originally against it for info content.
And I only ever use them for affiliate content. It’ll mostly just be two FAQs with FAQ schema for which are the best product brands and what’s the best product. And then just rank for both affiliate links in the FAQ will show up on the searches and it’ll make your, you know, the more real estate and like a thicker.
Part on the search. So in some niche cases, we’ll use FAQ schema as well, but only in like higher value FAQ CTR, increasing areas is, is, is a really a play by play thing. Mm-hmm the buyers guys are also really important in my opinion, because they can function as not only something that informs, but you can also sell in them.
So, you know, you might mention the three most important facts to consider in your bias guide for a microphone. It’s sound quality. Your price, performance ratio and weight witness, but it’s, you don’t just say, yeah, price is important because you don’t wanna end up burn or underpaid for something that you’re not happy with.
You, you can go into more debt than go, but is important. And. At the end. You know, if your budget is around $80, we recommend this one. And then once you’ve kind of taken them through why those things are important, people are usually more receptive to clicking where you wanna go and you can put the affiliate link there.
It’s also another way of segmenting people based on what kind of product they’re looking for. Are they looking for the main products or one of the antagonist products? We’ve. But against it. So you can sell in the buyers guys pretty effectively because they are in themselves, rapport, building things that show expertise, there are other little things that you can do.
So for very, very, very competitive our schools, we’ll go back through and put the dynamic month and year in like dynamic year is fine, that standard. But you can, for certain things, for example, like we, we don’t do like laptops or anything, like, like, you know, the, the PC mags and whatever we’ll go after.
But like if I was going after best VPN or best laptops, I’m putting best VPN. In July or August, 2022, right? Any like little bit, I’m putting that in there to try and get my extra. Cause if something’s updated every month, right. You trust it more. That is the living, breathing modular, constantly fresh thing.
That’s everything. I’ve got nothing more on, on the framework there that we use.
Jared: Fantastic. That’s so good because there’s always a struggle. Like what do I, what do I update? You know? And sometimes if you have an article that maybe has dropped a lot, that’s one thing you can look at it with a fresh set of eyes and say, well, clearly, whatever I’m writing about, isn’t working right now.
But certainly if you’re just going in an update articles, I mean, you mentioned, you know, you’re going in an update in article that ranked number three, that article is still doing very well. And what do I do to update it? So that’s a really, that’s a really. Framework there. I wanna take a step back, you know, and maybe give people if we can spend the last few minutes of the, of the interview talking about some of the bigger picture items, because you’re clearly a very detailed guy.
We’ve seen that throughout the interview, but then you also have this bigger vision for a portfolio of sites really quickly. Just tell us some of the details about this big site. And then I want to ask you a couple questions about how you are running a team and growing more than just one site, but some of the other sites, like what are the details on this site?
We talked about the earnings a bit, but maybe just in terms of monthly page views in terms of. Number of articles, you know, that sort of thing. People can get their minds around this art, this site we’ve been talking about for the last 45 minutes or so.
Jamie: Sure. I think it’s around 420 articles on the site now.
Okay. You like just recently, it’s gone out from doing around $20,000 a month to around 25,000, but that could well come down because like it’s based on not Amazon or. Like ads, but sort of variable third party affiliate programs that can be more volatile. So it could well be that it’s steady state income is around 15,000, but for the moment we’re living well, or we could be about to take off even more.
It’s difficult to predict with these sorts of things. Mm-hmm, it’s around 220,000 page views. Now it’s gone up a bit recently, but it’s not come from like high value stuff. It’s more informational content. So each additional page view has been worth less, but that’s the, the levels we’re at now. We’ve never published a.
We do have writers that work for the site now, but it’s like a, like, I’m fine with someone that only publishes four pieces of content a month because we can go through our templates and our SOPs that we’ve drawn up and make sure that if we put it out, that we back it to be some of the best content around.
Jared: You are starting a bunch of new sites. Why start a bunch of new sites rather than doubling down on this one and or the other one that you mentioned that was making around $7,000 a month?
Jamie: Because I can’t stay focused on one thing and I’m making the wrong decision.
Jared: based on, you’re honest to the core, you’re honest to the
Jamie: core guess it’s definitely the better plane not to, but if we can get the system, right, it is the pay I just, as of yet, have never been like super organized and able to just create this system we’re in, we we’re so much better than we were six months ago and I made so many mistakes.
And so many people like the, their performance within the company, wasn’t their fault. It was my fault and not giving them the tools they needed to succeed. But we are getting closer now to. Stage, we’ve got fairly robust systems that like, even if someone then leaves, it’s easy to plug another person into that, like a sort of like a puzzle or a Lego sale or something that is a more modular thing that can survive.
And it’s easy to understand roles it’s more clearly defined as, so there’s writers, you know, the keyword researchers brief as. Feedback and editor per people, and then formatting people, you know, it’s much more clearly defined and robust in that, which should make it easier to scale. And that doesn’t mean that you can just have a bunch of non experts writing whatever, and it’s gonna rank, it’s not the case.
I still don’t believe that that’s possible at scale, or at least reliably it, it might work for a while, but I won’t sleep easy knowing that I can get new to any time because I haven’t tried to create best in class stuff. I’m gonna build on a tangent here, but it’s just, yeah, we’ve been working on the systems and I think we are close now to being able to scale up quite quickly.
Whereas we were previously too reliant on me, just like micro imagine, because I knew that I could get it right. Which is the wrong plan. It won’t scale.
Jared: You also have the budget. Now, you know, you have some budget behind you from sites that are earning good cash that you could, you know, reinvest too. So, you know, it’s always, it’s always hard to start 10 sites when you have very little money to put into those sites, but at least you’re at the point where you do have the ability to invest in people and systems to to have a chance of building out that many sites.
The, I gotta ask you how old are. I’m 25,
Jamie: but I back 15. It’s. Alright. You’re allowed to think that , I
Jared: wasn’t thinking 15, but I mean, you’re, I’m not gonna share my age, but you’re definitely a lot younger than me. Congratulations on all of your success. And I just love your energy. I love all the stuff you’ve shared.
I love the depth that you go into. And I think that there’s so many things I’m gonna listen to this one a couple more times over again. I think that you have a lot of really. Powerful things you’re doing that are not normal. Maybe I’ll just say this at the end here, like so many people who build websites, specifically affiliate sites and content sites in general, that are monetized in different ways.
They’re so focused on the SEO that it’s so easy to get lost with all the other details. And I think if there’s one really high level thing that you’ve reminded me, today’s that at the end of the day, The way you make your money is by getting people onto your site, keeping them engaged and then helping them to make a purchase decision.
And there’s so much more that than just SEO. There’s so much more to that than just keywording on page factors and so much of what you do threads throughout that. I, I, I think for me, that was the big, big, big takeaway along with all the other really cool tips you shared.
Jamie: Or even if it’s not necessarily that way now I’m not trying to be here and do it right now.
I’m trying to make sure that I’m stood around in three years. And so I think that it will age well to focus and think in this way. And I’ve always just thought, like, I don’t wanna just get money. I want to add value. And then what I get is what I get. I think it’s useful to come from a. What can I do for me and what can I do for them versus sort of thing.
And so if you really focus on creating the best user experience, like I think that that is important. I think that that will be rewarded more and more as the algorithms get clever and clever and can pick these things up better and better. And so for me, I like to sleep well, knowing that like, I’m not gonna lose 50% tomorrow because that’d be.
I’ve got an office to pay for. I can’t, I can’t be losing 50%. I’ve got staff to pay. So it is, I think it’s more reliable and it will age like wine rather than some sites that are just going for, and there’s nothing wrong. We’re just going for it. You know, collecting the money, you know, credit’s all the talented people that can create all these FAQ feature snippet, grabbing programmatic Python, bots that go crazy.
Like I, I’m just too dumb to do that. You know, I’d be tempted. This is just the way I go about it. And I’m a guess more risk averse in that. I’d rather build something that is. Like of a brand and that’s just my not wanting to be stressed. And like my enjoyment of delivering what I think is value. It ma this matches my feelings around that.
Jared: mm-hmm yeah. You know, we didn’t even get to talk. There’s so many things we didn’t get to talk about. We didn’t get to talk about. Your musings about selling this big site and then taking the cash and reinvesting it or holding onto it, or, I mean, I it’d be so fun to spend another bit of time going that, but I guess we’ll save that for another day.
I’ll definitely be reaching out to you. Maybe we can get you back on for an update in a year or two. Sure. Where can people follow along with what you’re doing? I know you and I were connected basically through Twitter and, and you share some great tips on Twitter, but where, where are different channels that people can, can follow along with what you’re.
Jamie: you can follow me on Twitter. It’s Jamie J a M I E. I know it’s spelled differently here than in America. I get everyone replies. It’s J a I M E it’s J a M I E underscore. I F if you want to read more long form content, we publish our income reports, as well as other things I’m gonna publish soon.
It’s increasing.com. And if you go on a, you shoot is Jamie. I.
Jared: I will include all those in the show notes. I get it. I swear. There’s about five different common ways to spell Jared and they’re all equally as common so I understand there. Okay. Jamie, thank you so much for joining us. This has been a a really packed session and I learned so much I wish you all the best continued success.
And until we talk again next time,
Jamie: thank you. I appreciate your time, Chad, and I hope everyone else about it. Useful.