Mr. Money Mustache » Blogging http://www.mrmoneymustache.com Early Retirement through Badassity Thu, 31 Jul 2014 00:17:13 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=3.9.1 The Logo Contest – Results! http://www.mrmoneymustache.com/2013/01/27/the-logo-contest-results/ http://www.mrmoneymustache.com/2013/01/27/the-logo-contest-results/#comments Sun, 27 Jan 2013 16:23:10 +0000 http://www.mrmoneymustache.com/?p=6313 Last week I invited any creative Mustachians to submit new logos for this site. Although I like making things myself, I thought it would be fun to have graphics from the readers as well, since a site like this really lives or dies based by its readership. I was not disappointed, as I received at least 25 submissions. Check ‘em out below, shown roughly in the order of submission.

Kudy at Monetary Musings sent these three:

kudy-monetarymusings-logo2

kudy-monetarymusings-logo1

kudy-monetarymusings-logo3

Joel, a regular guy (i.e. non-blogger) with a side web/graphic design business called Tallsprout sent these:

joel_at_tallsprout-coin1

joel_at_tallsprout-coin2

joel_at_tallsprout-mustache

I enjoyed this oldschool one from Jake, who resourcefully harvested the picture from the old Meet Mr. Money Mustache article (circa April 2011, the first post ever on this blog):

jake-1

The always-spunky Aussie named Mortgage Mutilator went a little crazy and produced seven designs for us:

mortgagemutilator-1 (Custom)

mortgagemutilator-2 (Custom)

mortgagemutilator-3 (Custom)

mortgagemutilator-4 (Custom)

mortgagemutilator-5 (Custom)

mortgagemutilator-6 (Custom)

mortgagemutilator-7 (Custom)

Sarah from DotDashLabs created this one:

mmm-banner-dotdashlabs.com

Famous Fancy illustrator Dave Joly sent us this animated one (you may have to open it in a separate window to see the animation)

joly_mmm_punch_logo

After cautioned him I him that Mr. Mustache is very serious and not cute at all (note that he had already attempted co cute-ify MMM with this February 2012 sticker design), his competitive instincts were triggered and he sent four more:

joly_mmm_Wood_logo

joly_mmm_birdfeeding_logo

joly_mmm_dog_logo

joly_mmm_nestEgg_logo

A reader named Alexia created this neat giant Yosemite Sam Mustache with gold in its nook from scratch:

alexia-1

Vince (with website kingsalomon.net) sent the following wild entry:

kingsalomonDotNet

(in case you are concerned about that young lad’s rather adult-looking biceps – apparently Vince Photoshopped his own arms onto his son).

Jeremy Doolin, a guy you might hear about in an MMM article someday, is a guy who recently ended up as an accidental radio guest host, discussing Mustachianism on a station in Virginia called WKKX (last Friday of every month at 11amEST):

jeremy_banner

Apparently the muscle/mustache dude in the picture is Eugen Sandow. Pioneer body builder and 19th century badass.

Those were all the submissions that showed up before the deadline. But if you ever want to create a new one some day in the future, don’t be shy – send it along and I’d be happy to add it to the collection. My plan is to swap these things out in a random fashion for many months to come, and create more as inspiration strikes.

And as you might have guessed from what is live on the site at the time of publishing, my personal favorite right now is: the “Coin and Planks” logo. It just looks really classy and badass to me, and as an added bonus the dude on that antique Russian coin happens to look pretty similar to me in profile.

Many thanks to everyone and happy weekend.

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Get Rich With: Blogging? http://www.mrmoneymustache.com/2012/03/16/get-rich-with-blogging/ http://www.mrmoneymustache.com/2012/03/16/get-rich-with-blogging/#comments Fri, 16 Mar 2012 12:03:24 +0000 http://www.mrmoneymustache.com/?p=3429 Well, there goes another million.

Sometime last week, this blog reached the “two million page views” milestone. It took less than three months to get that second million, compared to nine months for the first one, which I wrote about on December 10th. I remember we all thought we were pretty big business back then, but by any measure there are now more than twice as many Money Mustaches growing out there as there were when we blew past the first million mark!

Blogs that talk too much about blogging can get pretty boring, so don’t worry, I’m not going to write an article like this for every million. But today I thought it would be worthwhile because there are several interesting lessons that I’ve learned from this writing hobby that I’ve wanted to tell you about. Hopefully they will be useful for the many other blog writers that hang around here, as well as for writers of other stripes and even regular Mustachians.

Lessons Learned:

1 – It’s really hard to understand exponential growth.

Even though I occasionally like to write equations and draw graphs in my spare time, I still find that I have the natural human weakness of thinking in linear rather than exponential terms. When I check this website’s statistics page each night, it looks like readers are just trickling in at a steady rate, like guests to a nice party. But when you look at a graph that spans several months and divide out the numbers, you can clearly see that an exponent is at work. The exponent always surprises you.

This has applications in any internet-related business or creative venture, since the pool of people on the internet is effectively infinite. If you can get something started that has a positive growth rate, that tends to grow all by itself (by word of mouth, or search engines, or viral-style-forwarding), you can end up with some very interesting results. The Honey Badger video that we all like to quote from is up to 40 million views. A friend’s internet-based sales business is making tens of thousands of dollars per month in sales, just because of a bit of self-perpetuating exponential growth.

It also has applications in saving for early retirement. Beginner Mustachians are occasionally blown away by the numbers we throw around here. “Nobody could save hundreds of thousands of dollars!”, they say, “I’ve only got a few hundred bucks and it was damned hard to save that much!”.

I felt much the same way when I was younger. The problem is not with the numbers, it’s just with that tricky exponential function again. Today’s hundred-dollar-saver can invest his savings even as he improves his skills at efficient living and increases his employment income over his working career. When you combine all of these effects, you will see strong exponential growth in your savings. The hundreds of today can quite easily become many thousands per month in the future, until in the years just before retirement, many people are easily increasing their wealth by over $100,000 per year – sometimes more than their entire gross pay.

2 – People can actually make money with this blogging thing.

When I started writing these articles, I assumed I would only be entertaining myself and a few facebook friends until I ran out of stuff to say. The writing habit proved quite addictive, however, and the number of fun and enthusiastic readers grew. So I upgraded my goal slightly to “Saving the Entire Human Race from Destroying Itself”. But even at that point, I never thought I’d earn much more than the cost of paying the web hosting fees.

But one day, I had a look around at some other personal finance blogs. It turns out that these things are serious business. Sites that rank in the top 20 on the Wisebread list are routinely bought by internet marketing companies, often for over a million bucks. One clever guy named Pat Flynn who runs smartpassiveincome.com is an expert at generating income from websites. Last year he raked in over $400,000 from his carefully designed portfolio of sites. Get Rich Slowly, possibly the biggest blog in this niche, sold over three years ago although the sale was a secret until recently.

The most surprising part is that MMM already has a larger amount of traffic than some of the big-name websites at their time of sale. I don’t know exactly why this has happened, since we have done almost no promotion of the site. But I like to chalk it up to the fact that Frugality is the New Fanciness. This is an idea whose time has come.

In the right hands and with enough flashing credit card ads, a site this big could probably already earn more than my software job used to pay. You can tell from my feeble attempts at revenue-generation that income is not one of the main goals of this blog. But I will still proudly note that we earned $500 last month, and the income graph also has one of those sneaky exponents at work!

And don’t worry, I am not even thinking about selling this thing. Someone did send me an unsolicited offer once for something like $10,000, and I thanked him for the information. But it seems unlikely that anyone would want to pay in the millions for a blog, with the condition that the author can continue to write (or not write) whatever he wants and quit at any time without notice.. with anti-consumerism, political incorrectness, and swearing  being key parts of the message.

But I do love learning about this entirely new field, and I am pleased to see that writers now have a more democratic way of making a living than they did back in the old paper publisher days. Even big-time authors like Joe Konrath now publish exclusively in e-book formats, and they find they earn more money doing that then they could with big traditional book deals.

3 – It’s Time for Mr. Money Mustache to Get Off His Ass and Write.

The biggest thing I have learned from this Two Million Views business is that we are onto something big here. If this blog really is one of the fastest-growing things in the entire personal finance blogosphere, then maybe I’d better start taking it a bit more seriously.

So I’m going to set a couple of goals. I’d like to increase the amount of time I spend working on this site. Not to the point of burnout, but I’d at least like to get a chance to write up more of the 100+ draft article ideas that keep piling up, and  answer more of the emails that people send me. I’m going to talk to more people, take better pictures, start putting out the odd amusing educational video, do more science experiments.. stuff like that. I’ve even applied to be a speaker** at this year’s “FinCon” (financial bloggers conference) since it’s right down the road in Denver, and hey, I like talking.

I’d also like to set a goal of having this writing gig pay for my whole family’s living expenses. That’s about $2000 per month. Yeah yeah, we’re already retired and all that, but I think it would be nice psychological boost to be able to say that I’m supporting a family just with writing, and more importantly to share my thoughts on how easy or difficult it is to do without any soul-selling.

In reality, since we already have our consumption covered from other income and we have no desire to spend even more money, that means that 100% of MMM proceeds will in some way, over time, be used to improve the world. I’m not sure exactly how yet, but I still like the idea. Plus, as blog writing increases, my carpentry income has to decrease, which eats into my safety margin. By making a point of having the blog earn just a little bit of income, I can regain this margin.

We Mustachians are still a brand-new family. Most of the world has barely even heard of us so far. This site hasn’t even cracked the top 100 on Wisebread’s widely-cited blog list, since they aren’t measuring website traffic or even feed subscribers (if they did we’d be in the top 40 or better!).

That’s fine with me, since I’m here just to write to you and I have my own way of defining success. But if you do want to help out, here are a few ways to game the system a little bit:

Follow MMM on Twitter by clicking here.

Befriend MMM on Facebook by clicking here.

Become a RSS subscriber by clicking here.  Even if you usually read on the website (which is the way I prefer to read blogs), this helps boost the still-important Feed Subscribers number, and you might learn a thing or two about the convenience of RSS reading as well.

Hardcore readers can install the Alexa Toolbar* which will boost this site’s Alexa Rank.

Some generous people have actually asked me if they could donate to this blog just to say thanks. I have always said no in the past, but given the new goals above, I will now accept that generosity and see how it goes. This is of course fully optional.. if you just want to read for free, please continue to do so!

This Paypal Button

Or the Tiptheweb Service: Tip

Or the Flattr Service
Flattr this

In the long run, the biggest fundraiser for this blog will probably be the MMM Recommends Page and the Commission-paying Rewards Credit Cards list. I like that method, because those things are tucked out of the way, useful, and non-spammy.

That’s enough of this behind-the-scenes stuff, it’s time to get back to the real world. Thanks again for reading and I’m looking forward to taking it all up several notches as the blog begins its second year of existence in just a few weeks.

Yee Haw!!

 

*The Alexa Toolbar is a browser add-on which displays the ranking of any site you visit in a tiny bar graph at the top of the browser. The toolbar sends anonymous stats to the Alexa web ranking company, which in turn determine the popularity of that website. The only weird part is, only bloggers actually use that toolbar, so your Alexa rank is really a measure of how popular your site is with bloggers. But yet many people haven’t caught onto this weakness, so your Alexa rank influences your rankings in the top 100 list as well as how much you get paid for advertising spots.  If a significant number of readers could be enticed to run the toolbar… hoohoo, that would be funny. There are already blogger networks which do a good job of exploiting this loophole, although MMM is not a member of any, hence my less-good current rank.

 

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She’s the DJ, I’m the Rapper (1 Million Page Views) http://www.mrmoneymustache.com/2011/12/10/shes-the-dj-im-the-rapper-1-million-page-views/ http://www.mrmoneymustache.com/2011/12/10/shes-the-dj-im-the-rapper-1-million-page-views/#comments Sat, 10 Dec 2011 07:02:32 +0000 http://www.mrmoneymustache.com/?p=2889 Today was a slightly exciting milestone in the life of this blog, in that it reached the one MILLION page views mark, measured since the day it was born on April 6th, 2011.

Some additional interesting figures: It has been around for nine months (although it feels like many years), and the Google Analytics stats page says there are might be about 25,000 regular readers and 5,000 RSS subscribers. Altogether, about 205,000 unique people have visited the site at one time or another. They made 424,000 visits at an average of 4 minutes each, meaning that on average, 104 hours of reading have been done each day. We’ve written up over 4,300 comments together.  Any way you slice it, there are at least a small city worth of Mustachians out there, which I find quite exciting!

Just today, for example, I learned that some guy started a blog called “Toward Mustachianism“, where he studies up on the concepts here, and applies them to his own high-income/high-spending (but dropping rapidly) lifestyle – and will surely see great results.

On a personal level, I have found this new role as Mr. Money Mustache to be quite a golden life booster. It is so much fun to get a chance to write down all these ideas and rants that have circulated in my head for years.. and have actual people read them and write back to share more. I feel the added challenge of thousands of imaginary eyes watching me when I feel tempted to make any sort of wussypants decision in my daily life. It has brought out many good laughs, and even brought me closer to some friends and family as well as finding some new friends out there around the world who I hope to meet in real life.

I mention all of this mushy stuff because I wanted to use this milestone as an excuse to say THANKS to my wife, Mrs. Money Mustache, for forcing me to start writing this blog. I was content to just occasionally write stuff down in an old Google document whenever it came to mind, with no interest or desire to ever publish it anywhere. But she set up this fancy blog system and reserved my previously-imaginary domain name, and then just left the whole thing sitting up there online, empty, taunting me, daring me to publish some shit. Since then, she has kept improving it and tweaking it, letting me know about mentions we received from other writers, and generally keeping things going.

That part is the key, because from what I’ve learned, it is unusual for a  blog to grow this quickly or even as large as it has. There are lots of technical hurdles involved and hidden side tasks, which I was not badass enough to spend the time to figure out on my own. Without her, I’m just a guy typing some shit into the computer, an activity which doesn’t just automatically create a fun community like this. It’s much like our family’s kickass roadtrip vacations, where she loves planning them out in meticulous detail, at which point I get to just hop into the driver’s seat of the fully-packed car, glance down at the already-programmed GPS, and say, “Ok, so where are we headed first!?”.

When it comes to poking around on the Internet and figuring out how to get things done, Mrs. Money Mustache is the bomb. That is one smart lady, and when she gets an idea in her head, she works non-stop and implements it and irons out all of the creases until it’s perfect. I respect that greatly, because it’s the formula for success in most forms of work.  It has also been great to have her as an occasional writer and commenter on the blog itself, and hopefully we’ll hear from her more often in the future.

Meanwhile, I’m not that great of a blogger, because ever since becoming a parent I tend to spend most of my time away from the computer. While I reassure myself that this is essential to be a REAL Mr. Money Mustache who has an actual life to write about, it does mean that I tend to let a lot of details slip in the blogging world. Story ideas get thought up but then forgotten, emails go unanswered, and more complicated articles requiring research sit around half-written. I apologize to the many dedicated people that write in every week with ideas and questions which do not get the timely attention they might get with a full-time blogger. It makes me feel a bit uneasy, because I don’t really like doing a half-assed job at anything. But oh well, at times like this we must take our motivation from the Honey Badger and just do it.

Over time, even small efforts like this can build on themselves and collect into a bigger success, and that’s my goal, the reason I will stick around and keep having fun here with you. Hearing every day from people who have sliced out their long car commute or made lifestyle changes that completely improved their lives is an incredibly good feeling. I can’t stop, as long as there is good stuff like that going on, and the scale of everybody making changes in their lives is much more than anything I could accomplish by myself. By one calculation, this blog has indirectly wiped out over 1000 person-years of average rich-country consumption already!

And there is SO much more to be said and learned! I noticed there are now 152 articles on this blog (equivalent to the length of a 600-page book!), but looking in my Drafts folder, I see there are MORE than that many unwritten ones waiting for further details or the right time to share them. More of them get added every day, as part of conversations at the kitchen table or out on the town with friends.

So for the foreseeable future, the Mustache must continue to grow. Thanks for making it happen!

 

(cover art and title is a takeoff of the 1988 album from oldschool rappers Dj Jazzy Jeff and the Fresh Prince).

 

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Mr. Money Mustache gets Passed the Early Retirement Torch http://www.mrmoneymustache.com/2011/12/01/mr-money-mustache-gets-passed-the-early-retirement-torch/ http://www.mrmoneymustache.com/2011/12/01/mr-money-mustache-gets-passed-the-early-retirement-torch/#comments Fri, 02 Dec 2011 05:34:35 +0000 http://www.mrmoneymustache.com/?p=2808 The word on the street today is that Jacob at Early Retirement Extreme is quitting his post as President of the blogging-about-how-we-should-all-spend-less-so-we-can-quit-our-jobs-in-our-thirties scene.  He’s doing it to focus on, if you can believe it, an exciting new JOB that he just accepted as a quantitative analyst in the financial industry.  It’s a big moment, because he has been doing a great job at not having a job for quite a few years now, and has earned a gigantic and loyal following and written a nice textbook about the subject as well.

http://earlyretirementextreme.com/so-long-and-thanks-for-all-the-fish.html

In the post, he said he wanted to pass the torch to Mr. Money Mustache. I found it very touching, because he has told me in the past that the main reason he kept the ERE blog going so long is to support people who were benefiting from his help. The common feeling is that financial independence through frugality is not a very well supported thing in our society yet.  There’s lots of information out there on making and investing money, and lots of completely different websites on frugality and simple living. But apparently not that many people write about combining the two interests and then running them both full-tilt to achieve an early retirement.

But I can’t claim to be a replacement for Early Retirement Extreme. I’m a simpler and more easily fulfilled man, and so I tend to write more about specific lifestyle issues and their effect on one’s ‘Stash, as opposed to broad social trends. I also tend to offend many more people (as you’ll see in the comments to his farewell letter), and I admit that while I don’t mean to offend them, I do get some enjoyment from reading angry comments when I come across them. Controversy is good, since the goal here is obviously to shake things up.

Really, I’m just a guy sitting on the couch typing things into a computer. But because of YOU, it is a whole world of fun. So thanks very much to all. And I dedicate this video to Jacob, just because I always sing this song whenever the the phrase “pass the torch” comes up in conversation:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lyu17C05jkw

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Weekend Edition: the blog so far http://www.mrmoneymustache.com/2011/07/24/weekend-edition-the-blog-so-far/ http://www.mrmoneymustache.com/2011/07/24/weekend-edition-the-blog-so-far/#comments Sun, 24 Jul 2011 18:14:00 +0000 http://www.mrmoneymustache.com/?p=1168 Sometime earlier in July, I was perusing the WordPress site stats that prove so addictive to bloggers. I noticed that during my distracted days of lake swimming and cottage building, this blog had hit a nice round number milestone of having had individual articles read a total of 100,000 times. That seemed like quite a lot to me, seeing how triple M was just born in April.

But now, just a couple of weeks later, I see that number is already creeping up towards 200,000 views. Even more significantly, there are now almost two THOUSAND subscribers – people who get the articles directly and thus do not show up in the page view statistics above. Exponential growth, thanks to the magic of the Internet. Just when things start to get slow, another random event seems to happen – this month it was getting a few mentions on the very popular site Lifehacker.com. (Thanks very much to David over there for the mention, by the way).

In June, I experimented with adding some Google Adsense ads to the sidebar. They have been a moderate success. It turns out the bloggers get paid surprisingly little for just having them (i.e., “per thousand impressions”), but surprisingly well when people actually click on them. Unfortunately, a surprisingly small number of people actually click – probably because we are all wise anti-consumers who pride ourselves on NOT noticing or clicking on advertisements. Good for us! I’d have to start a blog on fashion or ‘Celebs’ if I wanted a consumery crowd.  According to the terms of service, you’re not allowed to discuss actual dollars per click, but in total, the blog is now earning over TWO DOLLARS per day. That’s far below minimum wage, but it’s still more than enough to pay for our monthly batch of beer brewing.. so thank you, readers!

As for the mental aspect of being a blogger: it is increasingly addictive. I find myself turning more and more into Mr. Money Mustache in real life each day. I buy less stuff than before, not wanting to contradict my own advice.. and I think up dozens more things that need to be said every day. I jot them down in the iPhone’s little notepad and only wish I had more time to write. Life is too busy and fun this summer, although with the young lad starting Kindergarten next month, I expect a fantastic amount of new time for hobbies to open up. The comments and readers, i.e., YOU, are the real things that make this fun, since we are an actual virtual community now.

Finally, as search engine traffic has continued to grow, so has the hilarity of the searches that bring people here. Here is a summary of some of the top and/or most interesting ones.

For fun, I’ve added a few links to the articles that I think generated these search engine hits:

mr money mustache (and various misspellings thereof, such as “mister money moustache”): 4000

bad superman    9
my money mustache    9
earth day    9
stock market    7
mr. mustache retirement    6
mortgage    6
car    5
“my gray hairs”    4
universal men’s grooming device    4
rei bookpacker plus    4
early retirement family man    3
investing    3
real estate    3
hasselhoff    3
lunch    3
stock market p e ratio 2011    3
401k    3
mustache cash stash    3
student loan    3
japanese man    3
raising children on no money    2
home renovation    2
true cost of raising children    2
how much does it cost to run my electric oven for 1 hour    2
food    2
vbinx versus vfinx    2
insurance    2
getting rich with rental property    2
dave ramsey” good guy    2
old woman weightlifter    2
mustache bar shortage    2
ramit sethi”    2
beer    2
what’s a good work food stash?    2
evil gut with long mustache    1
colourful    1
man grooming head in mirror    1
old muscle big moustache    1
ways native americans kept hair clean    1
mr money mustache that guy who knows loads about money and early retirement and investment for a return of 7%    1
wealth, fuck you money    1
mrs money mustache    1
why retire if you like your work?    1
herbert salisbury simple retirement calculator    1
the magic of thinking big” and warren buffet    1
superman 3 junk yard bad fight    1
there is a higher cause    1
sarah gets a bank loan of 200000 for the purchase of a house the mortgage is to be amortized through monthly payments for a term of 15 years with an interest rate    1
double mcpancy    1
do a lot of canadians have mustaches    1
mr money mustache baby angels    1
why are wealthy people still buying gas guzzling cars?    1
amsterdam bicycles    1
getting rich off rentals    1
the most badass person you’ve met    1
retired from corporate life at 28    1
vin diesel wealth    1
millionaire car buying strategy    1
mustache saver blog retire early    1
mr money muscle    1
mr money mustache investments    1
“summer mustache”    1
rich bar owner    1

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A Guest Posting on Frugal Dad! http://www.mrmoneymustache.com/2011/07/01/a-guest-posting-on-frugal-dad/ http://www.mrmoneymustache.com/2011/07/01/a-guest-posting-on-frugal-dad/#comments Fri, 01 Jul 2011 10:38:48 +0000 http://www.mrmoneymustache.com/?p=1059 I’ve been broadening my blogging horizons a little bit and reading what other people are writing. One blog that caught my eye is Frugal Dad. I like the title and the great variety of topics he has covered over the years, in a nice easy-sipping style.

The Frugal Dad is a guy who started out mixed into the consumer culture, and as a result ended up with an uncomfortable amount of debt, before he hit the brakes and started turning things around.

It’s a nice contrast to Early Retirement Extreme (the first place where I had the opportunity to do a guest posting) and Mr. Money Mustache, since ERE and I both embraced the frugality plan right from the start, thus missing out on many of the hard knocks and life lessons that are dealt to people who mix it up with The Consumer Credit System

So I wrote to the author, and he has graciously agreed to post an article from me on his powerful and interesting site. The triple M words will find their way to some new eyes. Many thanks, Frugal Dad!

Here is a link to today’s Guest Posting: First Retire, Then Have Kids

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An Experiment with Blog Moneymaking http://www.mrmoneymustache.com/2011/06/01/an-experiment-with-blog-moneymaking/ http://www.mrmoneymustache.com/2011/06/01/an-experiment-with-blog-moneymaking/#comments Wed, 01 Jun 2011 18:06:51 +0000 http://www.mrmoneymustache.com/?p=772 Looking around at the other personal finance blogs, I notice that virtually all of them have some sort of advertising slipped into the page somewhere.  Do these people actually earn money just for wiggling their fingers atop a computer keyboard a little bit each day? Even though it’s just a website they created themselves to have some fun writing out their opinions and conversing with other people out in the world? That sounds too good to be true!

So I did a bit of research on the matter. It turns out that earning money for blogging is a very hot, yet very mysterious topic. Some popular writers claim to earn an entire opulent living simply with blog advertising. There is one highly popular blog called Problogger that writes mostly about how to have a highly popular blog. I even read a recent guest-posting on Problogger from a guy who became disabled in a car crash, losing all limb functions, and yet built up an amazingly popular blog of his own, and now earns a great living, including paying for all of his special medical needs and living on the coast of Mexico, doing all of his writing only by speaking into a microphone.  Quite entertaining and amazing, all the new things I get to learn as side benefits of becoming Mr. Money Mustache.

But yet there is absolutely no good general information about how much these ads pay on a per-impression or a per-click basis. The few actual people I could find to ask, claim it makes them between fifty cents and five bucks per month. That doesn’t sound very worthwhile. So what is the true answer?

As an old computer engineer, however, I must say I am intrigued by the way the system works. Because the blogger just writes articles and has fun with his readers, and meanwhile Google Adsense reads the content of your site and tries to pick ads that are relevant to them.

Advertisers in turn compete for advertising space on this worldwide pool of hosting websites, bidding up the price of keywords and clicks according to what the market will bear. They only pay for actual results – people who come and visit their website – unlike traditional advertising. Google just sits back and maintains the code that automatically hosts this bidding and content-matching. And they collect massive profits from it. Everyone wins due to yet another advancement in technology.

So, unable to find real knowledge about how well it works, I decided to just try it out down in the bottom corner of Mr. Money Mustache*. I fully expect it to not earn any money, but as a person who claims to watch every dollar bill carefully, I have to at least test it out, don’t I?

I have already learned that it is quite fun from an administrative perspective. I get to log into my AdSense account and check/uncheck the boxes for the advertising categories that are acceptable to me. Payday loans? Money transfers? BZZZZT. Get rich Quick? Sounds amusing, but BZZZZT. Mortgage rates from actual reputable banks? Cloth diapers? I guess those can stay.

Apparently, just having the ad appear pays very little, but if the ads are interesting enough to have people actually Click on them, the payment is much higher. So it’s up to the blogger to filter out annoying or useless results and try to pick categories that people will actually occasionally want to click for their own benefit. For me, I claim to be immune to most online advertising, but I notice as soon as somebody starts talking about Woodworking tools or techniques, I lose my immunity and immediately check out their online store. I’m a sucker for anything in Fine Homebuilding.

One thing I enjoyed during this morning’s testing was the fact that Dave Ramsey ads appear on almost every page that mentions his name. I found it ironic that Dave Ramsey might inadvertently be paying me for making fun of him.

So there you have it – my explanation for the ad box that is down in the corner. I promise to keep you updated on any results, and if it does earn any money, I will spend it solely on helping the Earth.. since it would be inappropriate for a man who rails on his countrymen for destroying the Earth with excessive consumption, to profit from that ranting and turn around and use it to buy more unnecessary manufactured luxury products.

If you see any ads that seem annoying or inappropriate, let me know and I may be able to block further categories. Or just ignore them and read on as you were before.

 

 

*Actually, Mrs. Money Mustache gets full credit for figuring it out and setting it up… I just get to type stuff while she practices amazing online wizardry to make the technological side all work perfectly.

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A Road Trip to Early Retirement Extreme http://www.mrmoneymustache.com/2011/05/25/a-road-trip-to-early-retirement-extreme/ http://www.mrmoneymustache.com/2011/05/25/a-road-trip-to-early-retirement-extreme/#comments Wed, 25 May 2011 13:09:12 +0000 http://www.mrmoneymustache.com/?p=706 Today is actually a special occasion – Mr. Money Mustache’s first Guest Posting on another blog.

The wise and benevolent writer of the Early Retirement Extreme blog, a guy named Jacob who also retired in his early 30s and has been running that site for several years, allowed me to write a “hello” to his own club of  financial freedom enthusiasts.

By the look of today’s readership stats, there are thousands of us. Maybe we can change the world!

Here’s the post: The quest of financial bloggers to Save the World

many thanks again to Jacob!

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How’s the Blog Doing, Anyway? http://www.mrmoneymustache.com/2011/05/13/hows-the-blog-doing-anyway/ http://www.mrmoneymustache.com/2011/05/13/hows-the-blog-doing-anyway/#comments Fri, 13 May 2011 14:30:49 +0000 http://www.mrmoneymustache.com/?p=538 Happy Friday everyone. You probably feel pretty tired from the ambitious week of challenges we have done to this point, and perhaps you are still recovering from the complete and permanent loss of visits to Starbucks I imposed on you yesterday.

So today, I thought we could take a break and I’ll let you in on some entertaining facts from behind the scenes.

When you write a blog like this, which I only started doing on April 6th of this year, you get a neat little statistics page that tells you how many people are visiting each day and how they got there.

It turns out this is pretty addictive and even casual bloggers like me end up getting caught up in the nightly report card of how many “reads” you got. Bloggers also read the news and the blogs of other people to get and share ideas, and they post comments wherever they like, and some of these comments lead to still more visitors.

In the last couple of weeks, I was very pleased to receive mention from some like-minded and much more established blogs like Early Retirement Extreme, Brown Girl in the Lane (cycling), Consciously Frugal, and Wake up to Frugality.  All of these links brought me an entertaining crew of new readers, so thanks guys! There were also some successful posts to Reddit.com which caused massive spikes in readership, some of which stuck around to read more.

The biggest thing that causes a blog like this to last or fade out is readership – so if readers actually are motivated to click “like” on facebook, or share it on reddit, digg, stumbleupon, twitter, or any other social things they are part of, that starts chain reactions. Once you have enough of these reactions, you get embedded into the very fabric of the Internet itself and Google starts forwarding you thousands readers who are searching for “early retirement” or “frugality” or other common terms. Then you can keep at it and keep having fun for years,  because just like Mike Mulligan and the Steam Shovel, you are motivated by how many people are there watching you dig.

A few more tidbits from the scoreboard:

  • 5,767 views all-time
  • 409 views today (this has grown very unevenly in a line from 0 on the first day to this level today. I think this is very encouraging!)
  • 1,157 views on your busiest day, May 10, 2011

The top search terms that led various web searchers to Mr. Money Mustache, and how many times they were used:

Search Views
mr money moustache 20
mr money mustache 14
mr. money moustache 9
mr mustache money 6
mrmoneymustache 4
mr money 3
hasselhoff 2
how many millionaires drive a toyota tacoma 2
money moustache 2
earth logo 2
mister money mustache 2
mrmoneymoustache 1
“too cheap” petrol or gas 1
mr money mustache blog 1
how much electricity do you waist per hour with 100 whattz 1
mr.moneymustache 1
money mustache 1
profitable leisure time 1
wealth, fuck you money 1
mr money mustach 1
how to make mustache in calculator 1
mr. money mustache 1
www.mrmoneymustache.com 1
what if i save 100 dollars a week 1
what does early retirement mean 1
mr mustache retirement 1

 

Even though only a tiny portion of the readership is coming from the search engines so far, some of these results are  Quite entertaining. But why does everyone keep calling me “moustache”? …And if people already know that Mr. Money Mustache exists, why do they keep searching at all instead of just typing in mrmoneymustache.com? Ahh, Mysteries of the Internet World.

 

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