Recently in the comments of another post someone challenged me by saying:

I have answered this many times. I would LOVE to do this.  It would be a hell of a lot easier then what I do now!

What would this prove? Nothing… Either way.   And I would have left my company for a year…

You know whats harder then making 1 million dollars? Making 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7 etc.

The bigger you get the more problems you have.

Check out my distractions from the last year:

  • 24 separate legal issues. 4 of which made it to court.
  • 15 meetings with our accountants where I had to be involved (its a 1 hour drive each way to our accounting firm)
  • 14 speaking engagements (3 keynote speeches). So far this year I been away from home almost 60 days…

But lets talk about finances for a minute. Right now I have 12 employees (full time and contractors mixed). We also outsource a ton of projects. Last year payroll was just shy of one million dollars.

That means every day I have to make $2,740 just to break even.

So… you… sitting at home… much like me 7 years ago on unemployment, I envy you.

Everything I do people expect me to hit a home run.  Society is not expecting anything from you right now.

Please listen to me.  Right now is an incredible time. One like the world has never seen before.

Internet Marketing and specifically affiliate marketing/internet arbitrage makes it possible for anyone from any race, social status, gender, whatever to generate income to have the life they always wanted.

But its not going to last long. Many states have already started to implement taxes on online revenue (affiliate tax) and the way this Obama administration I am guessing we will see it at the federal level.

Then mix in all the new FTC regulations which honestly, when read, seem to be a gun pointed right at affiliate marketing.

Someday when your kids ask you about the internet gold rush you will say one of 3 things:

  • I made a lot of money
  • I tried it and it just was not for me
  • I missed the boat and have always wondered what I could have done with it

I always say failure is something I can live with, regret is not.  Dont be the 3rd person in that list.

So get after it. You do not have to spend any money to start. All the information is out there for free.  If you do have cash then there are products that condense all of it for you.

But you do not have to spend a dime if you have a ton of time on your hands!

You have no excuse. Get after it.

By Jeremy Schoemaker

Jeremy "ShoeMoney" Schoemaker is the founder & CEO of ShoeMoney Media Group, and to date has sold 6 companies and done over 10 million in affiliate revenue. In 2013 Jeremy released his #1 International Best selling Autobiography titled "Nothing's Changed But My Change" - The ShoeMoney Story. You can read more about Jeremy on his wikipedia page here.

146 thoughts on “If I could – starting over”
  1. Great post Shoe. I love the motivational twist!

    I bet there would be a ton of people that would wait the entire 12 months just to see what you did with it, instead of spending time working and building their own business.

    1. He could be an inspiring commencement speaker. I can picture him giving a speech similar to this.

      1. “14 speaking engagements (3 keynote speeches). So far this year I been away from home almost 60 days…”

        Susan, it sounds like he’s already a speaker… what he speaks about, I don’t know precisely, but certainly inspiring people about his own success.

    2. Very motivating! I imagine there are more than a few people who have read this post and decided to give it a try, especially with the assurance that they won’t have to spend a lot of money to do it.

  2. Getting it right now Shoe . . . .it’s all friggin gravy right now and it tastes GOOD!

  3. yay for obama and the government getting in the way of EVERYTHING good and decent.

    1. On second thought….

      I could have sworn there were a lot of douche bags in our industry that voted for and were Obama fan boys.

    2. seriously what world did you just arrive from. It’s a very known fact that where there is money, governments will go after and take their share.. nothing shocking or new.

      If they don’t either of two things happen, they still get their cut one way or another and the industry becomes a semi profitable thing (no tax up to a specific sum, then above that you get hit really hard to compesate for the other chunk not earning enough) or they ban the activities by outlawing them.

      1. But you have to admit that regulations protect people from unscrupulous individuals.

        1. But you also have to admit that regulations sometimes make the world so complicated, they’re doing it the other way around. As long as con artists find loopholes, expect to see some debauchery.

        2. All the spam, hacking and dodgy marketing is more rampant than ever. The government’s new legislation and rules haven’t made a blind bit of difference for 99% of scammers, just made the life harder for 99% of honest business people.

          It’s the companies and technology in the industry that are protecting people from unscrupulous individuals. Smarter spam filters, better search engines, browsers that filter out dodgy sites etc. are the things protecting people.

          The government is just making it harder for emerging companies to operate with more red tape, bureaucracy and taxes.

        3. Yea and if they become too burdensome the company moves to another country where business is easier and more profitable. The U.S. is a good example of what happens when the taxes and regulations become overbearing. Look at what has happened to our manufacturing over the last 20 years.

    1. The price of success. But if you truly love what you do then all of that are just secondary. It’s the nature of business to grow and become more complex once you start doing something right.

      1. But think about this for a second: becoming more successful means having more responsibilities. Keep up the good work, Shoe.

  4. Wow I felt like I was reading a scene from The Boiler Room with Ben Affleck staring down at me… 😉

    1. Oddly enough, I felt the same way, too. Perhaps the dinner scene in Citizen Kane also rings a bell?

  5. “I always say failure is something I can live with, regret is not.”

    You gots a way with them words shoe…well said! Every industry starts off the same way. No rules. Then slowly, more and more are added until only the main players (lobbies) can play.

    1. All great achievements always begin with a single thing. A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step and a billion dollars starts with a buck.

      1. I completely agree with your statement. You won’t accomplish anything if you won’t start with one step. (Thank Big G I paid attention to my Confucian classes way back at UCLA)

    2. True! So when the opportunity presents itself, the best way to go is take it and run with it. That $1 might be the start of something BIG.

  6. So, if it’s such a burden to you, let’s trade businesses. I’ll run your empire, and you can sit at my home starting over. I’ll even give you 5K and a computer to start.

    Or, maybe you should just sell your business and start over in a different market (since I’m sure there will be non- competes signed).

      1. I will definitely know it even if Shoe does follow Paul Avery’s advice and go incognito. You can’t miss his charm and the awesome web marketing tips and pointers he always gives away.

    1. From what I understand, he’s not saying that what he has or what he’s doing is a burden. I think he’s just stating facts there to explain why he’s not accepting that challenge from Paul Avery anytime soon.

  7. Maybe you should take a trip around the world with John Reese. You might decide to set up shop in China where they don’t care about laws.

    1. They might not have Internet laws now but the way China’s economy is progressing — both online and offline — we won’t have to wait long before it does.

    1. I think it’s normal for us humans to have this attitude of always envying other humans — whether it’s turning green when seeing your neighbor’s “perfect” hairdo or getting a peek that flashy new car in their garage. Nonetheless, to turn it the other way around, let it be your inspiration to do your best instead of moping in the corner? Thanks for the superb post, Jeremy.

      1. You couldn’t have said it better. This is one way to emphasize a point, Jeremy. Web marketing is only for the savvy risk-takers who want to move up. Kudos!

      2. I feel sorry for people who do that i.e. live in constant envy of others’ successes. They must be so busy minding other people’s business that they don’t have the time to “Get money”.

  8. Hmmm… seems like the golden age of affiliate marketing was several years ago when there was less competition and Acai berry rebills!

    I just started and I find it difficult with all the rules and regulations imposed by Facebook, Google, etc. etc.

    1. In my POV, more competitions and regulations are filled with opportunities. A good Internet marketing practitioner is the one who would be able to blaze a way across a field of uncertainties and restrictions to deliver a great job.

  9. Shoe, It’s been a long time. I just happened to click on this RSS email in my inbox and read this post. Like always it was inspiring and just what I need to hear to keep me grindin. Thanks

  10. I think this is great info, and a honest reflection of where we are in this point in time! Im working form my piece! : )

  11. I think what the Shoemeister is saying is that the fight getting there was the best part about it…

    Get money

    1. Victory is much sweeter when you know you earned it. Getting it spoon-fed to you may be easier but it spoils the experience.

    2. What jumps at me is that behind the hype is a solid and responsible approach to doing business. That all great efforts are eventually rewarded if you just stick to doing them the best way you can.

  12. This guy “challenging” you wants to convince himself that his failures aren’t his fault. It’s a classic loser reaction to try to bring successful people down. I make a point of keeping people like that out of my life, or minimizing contact with them.

    If you want to succeed, and haven’t done it yet, you must first change the way you think.

    Jeremy wouldn’t have any trouble at all kicking some ass anonymously. People who have the mindset of success will always find a way.

    I gotta get back to grinding now.

    1. As a mom of three kids, I’ve learned that the best way to succeed is to to learn to accept your mistakes and start over. Is Paul Avery just very bitter he sucks? LOL

      1. Not bitter.

        My family has done well. And I have experience with people that are struggling in life. And too often I find myself thinking ‘All they need to do is…’ But then I remind myself that from my vantage point things are easy.

        For example, I own 3 rental properties. One of my tenants was short on the rent in August, short just $250 short. Both partners smoke, smoking in Canada is darn expensive. $7.00 a pack, got 2 smokers smoking 2 packs a day.. (7*2*30=$420)… So when the tenant was telling me they were short I am thinking in my mind ‘You cannot afford to smoke, quit smoking.’ But for me, as a non-smoker, it is easy to think/say that.

        Just like from Shoe’s vantage point it is pretty easy (or seemingly easy, so he makes it seem) to do well on the Internet.

    2. Moping and pitying yourself just doesn’t make you a successful web marketer. Always move forward each passing day and before you know it, you’ll have the big bucks coming your way.

      1. My 2 cents. Successful marketers are optimists by nature. There’s no room for negativity in this business.

    3. Maybe the challenge was presented with good intentions. It’s possible that Avery believes Schoemaker is more than up to it.

      1. What’s this challenge to Shoe anyway? He can do the job with flying colors with a blindfold on…

  13. I hope i will not be the third person in that list! I would love to say that to my children “I MADE A LOT OF MONEY” that would be so nice to say. I would be like a role model

  14. “You have no excuse. Get after it.” I like the way you phrase that. It makes me think how it’s often easier to come up with an excuse just to avoid doing something very challenging.

  15. Thanks for sharing your insights, Jeremy! Your post gave me a lot of things to think about.

    1. Yes, it’s one of his more insightful posts in the recent past. I really like it.

  16. How about taking on the challenge? A lot of people take sabbaticals to rest or pursue something else that they’re equally passionate about.

      1. Taking care of my daughter is just like that. You have to attend to gazillions of responsibilities that you sometimes ask what you’ve got yourself into. At the end of the day, however, you just feel like a million bucks. I totally feel ya, Jeremy!

  17. That’s a lot of legal issues you’re dealing with. I admire your honesty for sharing that. Not many people can be so open about stuff like that.

  18. Now you know why Shoemoney is my most favorite blog of all. You get to learn how to earn big bucks while getting serious life lessons along the way. Awesome, huh?

  19. ironic that achieving financial freedom means being tied up to the thing that gave it to you.

    1. I think Shoe just stressed that you’ll have more problems when you’re making more money. What do you think, Jeremy?

    2. The more a business grows, the more complex it gets to manage it. No way around it.

  20. At the end of the day, I believe that success is all about following your bliss. Not everyone can be good at what you do.

    1. I completely think so, too. Seeing all your efforts becoming a collective reality is something to look forward at the end of the day. Gives you drive to do more the next day as well.

  21. Accepting a challenge is not about proving a point. Rather, it’s grabbing an opportunity to test yourself – of stretching yourself a bit. If you really love the idea, why not do it then?

    1. because he can’t take a year off from all those things he’s dealing with, that’s why.

    2. If you’re good, you’re good. The daily demands of you business are challenges enough. No need to go accepting challenges thrown at you from people who don’t know better.

    3. Well, that’s easy to do when you only have yourself to consider. But once you consider people who work for you, making that decision is not as straightforward than it used to.

  22. A crazy week, a serious note, and an epic party to attend this weekend. Now that’s what I call living the life!

    1. That means we should be grinding harder than before to get to where Shoe’s at. Absolutely a very inspiring post.

  23. Got any updates on the Humongo Nation tour, Shoe? A friend of mine told me he was able to spot Darryl and the rest of the gang at Raleigh the other week.

  24. I do agree one has to take action, but with money things get a lot easier. Take for instance Facebook advertising.

    But who says you have to start making money that way? There’s a ton of ways to make a decent income. We just have to choose a few and get good at them.


    1. How about doing just that to prove this person’s wrong, Jeremy? (And then let me handle the reins. First task: attend the Mansion party!)

  25. Why so many legal issues? Do you think it’s inevitable for most successful Internet marketers to face at least one legal issue in their career?

  26. Topping off my day with this fine post is such a blessing. Thanks for inspiring a lot of newbies, Shoe. We appreciate how you give us a preview on what to expect in the next few years (or weeks, if we’re lucky). Best wishes from Burbank.

  27. Who dares, wins. It takes daring and hard work to accomplish what you did. You don’t need to prove anything to anyone.

  28. you have achieved a lot in 7 years. i can’t imagine you unemployed and sitting at home not doing what you’re doing now.

  29. How about sharing to us how you’d do it if you were to accept the challenge? We’ll do it for you. LOL

    1. Just because someone can doesn’t make it a complete waste of time.

      How good are you at walking?

      I challenge you to a 24-hour walk-a-thon to see who walks the furthest in 1 day. You go first.

      Pretty stupid challenge isn’t it?

      Pretty good little waste of time on your end if you took me up on it, right?

      So let’s use some common sense.

      Last I checked you don’t need to jump just because someone “challenged” you to.

  30. It’s different when you already have employees to consider. You become responsible for others’ paychecks, which means you need to work harder to keep the business rolling.

  31. This is very timely for me. Thanks for posting this. Have fun at the mansion this weekend!

  32. I enjoyed this post. As an aspiring “make a full time income online” gal, it’s really interested to hear someone in your position discuss the downfalls of success. I guess at this stage in the game, I only envision a fancy car, working when and where I want, and not having a boss. Eager to see if and how you act on the challenge!

  33. What I think would be more interesting is another internet reality show. It could be set up like MTV’s Made. Shoe and his guru friends could take a average Joe and turn him into a internet marketing guru.

    Hey, I’ll even play the average joe.

  34. Great inspiration Shoe…The government alway want to sit back and enjoy entrepreneurs hard work with taxes, fees, and anything to get in our pockets.

  35. Great post Jeremy. People don’t realize the pressures of having to “make payroll”. Once others become dependent upon your actions to make their living, things change. Making money to support me is one thing. Making money to have money to cover payroll is something.

    I love the motivational aspect as well. I write a career advice blog and will use elements of your post (with credit to you) in my next series.



  36. “I always say failure is something I can live with, regret is not”

    Unless parachuting of course ;)!

  37. Shoe, great post. I agree with 99% of it. Please dont pretend that making the 2nd million is harder than the first. EVERY millionaire will tell you the first is the hardest.

    Making a million from scratch is much harder than making a million when you have $100,000+ in capital.

    I understand the problems that your money brings you… but that is like a movie star complaining about the paparazzi… Most people would kill to have your problems.

    Great post though.

  38. Good post shoe…You were the first person that motivated me to take on affiliate marketing almost a year ago and your still motivating me today. Honestly I haven’t made a lot of money…yet. I decided that no matter what it takes I am going to make a million dollars online…once in a while I question if that’s possible…then I read a post like that and all my motivation comes right back…Thanks


  39. Any chance of a post on what you’ve learned from those legal issues? e.g., Things to avoid, etc.?

  40. Ah but you see, I have already taken up the challenge myself. Set myself a budget, see how much can be made from it.

    I wonder if Shoe would tell me what to expect from USD 5000 worth of investment, spread over a year maybe? anyone, help? Help me set a target with this, so I know what to ‘realistically’ aim for?
    This. Is. On.

  41. Great article and comments, hopefully a lot more people will get to tell the same success story you have

  42. Enjoyed the post, Shoe.

    The bit about how much work you do was a good reminder that there’s no way to accomplish anything without putting in the work.

  43. I noticed some themes of the tax man in this thread. If you don’t want to pay taxes try a place where there are none.

    I bet most people will want to come back to their country after a short time and happily pay their taxes.

  44. I guess the nice thing about being Shoe is that he doesn’t have to start over. He put in the time and hard work to get to where he is…

  45. That is sad that the government wants to tax us after we have worked so hard to learn how to do internet marketing and are just starting…another slap down…let’s all vote for smaller government that doesn’t cost as much.

  46. ‘failure is something I can live with, regret is not.’ .. what can I say? just love it

  47. Nice comment. But I don’t think you would really want to be in the shoes of someone who is struggling.
    Breaking the barrier is the most difficult step. Once it’s broken and you have made a few sales, it is very easy to say, “It was simple”.
    But for someone like me who is just making it, it means a lot.

    I guess that’s why you are being challenged by people. Not that they want you to make the money, they even might know that you will.

    They just want to prove it for themselves that it is possible, or they want to pull someone else down (crab mentality).

    Whatever the case , I am Happy for your Success, and I am on my way there too 🙂

  48. Hey Shoe,

    Everybody thinks the grass is greener on the other side of the fence.

    They don’t realize the last guy there left because he thought it was brown.

    Be careful what you wish for, you may just get it:)

  49. I have had to switch my mentality as it was the only thing holding me back. I am taking positive steps everyday and will soon be marketing in a big way online. One of the worst things about IM is all of the misleading BS and outlandish claims. Even if they are true…on the whole they are overwhelming to too many of us newbie’s and make us focus on the wrong things. Most of which we where not concerned with when we first became interested in online income.

    p.s. your blog is the shizzle. I shall be back, and your video on secret marketing was such an easy and enlightening watch. CHEERS!

  50. As a brick and mortar business owner, I understand the pressure of having to make X a day to stay alive. Perhaps there is a sweet spot somewhere in the middle of not having so many employees and such that you can hit to make money passively, without needing so much over head?

    For me, my dream (action will change it from dream to reality) is to be able to have flexible work hours and be location independent with a full time internet business.

    Keep teaching and leading, and YES, LET’S ALL TAKE ACTION!

  51. 1 mill PAYROLL???

    Wouldn’t have expected it.

    My hard costs each month (minus advertising, affiliate payments etc) are a mere $12,000 per month.

    But 7 years ago, I don’t think I was MAKING $12,000 per year. (Maybe 18k per year).

    Yet back then life was a lot more simple. No doubt.

    Of course the assets, business development, freedom and little luxuries that I now enjoy weren’t available then.

    I think there’s a progression from just “wanting to make money” (the broke, beginner phase), to “building a continually growing, strong brand and sustainable business” (the many hours, hard work, smart decision making, heavy re-investment phase) to then enjoying the fruits of the labor.

    It’s all part of the fun.

    – Rob

  52. I missed this post, but their will always be opportunity for people that are paying attention and are ready for it. That’s the catch, you have to be ready for it or your always going to miss it.

    Super job….

  53. Thanks for posting this! It was the kick that I needed!

    Also, thanks for posting valuable stuff and not spammy stuff to make money.

    Good luck in 2011

  54. I do have to thank Paul though. If it wasn’t for his company never contacting me or delivering his product to me, I would have never found the Shoemoney System! Thanks Paul!

  55. Okay I am ready to get after it! Where do I start? I am not very talented with a computer. I already have 10 websites what can I do to get them to start making money.

    1. Just buckle down and fill them with hundreds or thousands of pages of genuine, useful content. Sell only stuff that you genuinely know and can recommend. Let Adsense go hang. Love it and work your ass off. Then , once it’s sizzling, get the groovy people to do a lot of the work for you because you give them an honest win-win offer. Yep, you know, at the end of the day it comes down to two old fashioned principles that never seem to have changed: honesty and hard work. At least that has worked for me. Really worked for me! Good luck!

  56. Too funny 🙂 I think every guy has had their picture taken at onetime or another with Ron Jeremy LOL
    Adda boy ron 🙂

  57. True the internet is full of opportunities and of course money…problem is trying to get some is the tricky part. Persistence, dedication and time should work..:)

  58. Hi, I am really happy I’ve found this information. Nowadays bloggers publish just about gossip and internet stuff and this is actually irritating. A good site with exciting content, that’s what I need. Thanks for making this website, and I will be visiting again.

  59. Curious to see what monetization strategies/models you use. I’m guessing you’ll go the affiliate route? Probably the fastest way to start making money, IMO. Good luck!

  60. Shoe,

    This is a wonderful way of looking at the situation of starting over with little or nothing. Many people are in this situation for a variety of reasons and think about how hard it all is. On the other hand, as long as you have your head screwed on, a computer and internet connection (which you could get at a library of all else failed), then you can be on your way to great things. I am privillaged to be in a better position, and am going night and day as this is the best ways to get ahead for the little guy.
    As long as you are prepared to work, you have no reason to succeed massively on line- there are tons of affiliate products out there alone, let alone creating your own product. You can start with a useful eBook and you’re on your way.
    Thanks for sharing and being a positive influence for so many in this very position.

  61. Hey Jeremy,

    What was the outcome of this challenge?

    I find its a very common question for newbies to ask the successful guys. If you had to start again tomorrow what would you do and how.

    But I think they forget that hindsight is a wonderful thing and by this point you know how to make money. So simply suggesting where you would start isn’t enough, then you dont have the knowledge and experience you guys do, to carry out what happens next.

    Bottom line I think, get a mentor, not a guru!!

  62. Hey Schoe, this is very inspiring post and thanks for writing up. We are indeed living in the gold rush period and we must use it.

    Now days everyone, whether he is unemployed, employed or a businessman, is thinking about switching to IM.

    So you should take action and start building your own money making empire. It’s the right time for you to do it, before it’s too late!

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