How I Made 6000 Dollars In A Week With Two Emails


Whilst I was on vacation I read this intriguing and inspiring post by Benny Hsu:

My $4759 Weekend And 11 Lessons To Help You

What I really like about this post is that Benny is just a regular guy like you or me – he’s not some bullshit guru trying to sell some bullshit system with a sales page that promises you’ll be making a 6 Figure income in just a few weeks with only a few hours work.

(Note – Benny went on to have his App featured as the App Of The Week in the App Store – and that catapulted him to greater success.  Read Life As App Of The Week for the full story!)

I wanted to write a similar post at a similar time in the hope that this might give inspiration to others in the way Benny did.  But I had to delay writing the post as I was on vacation!

So How Did I Make $6K In A Week With Two Emails?

You’re probably thinking that I came up with a new product or service and did some kind of launch, right?

Now I do create new products semi-regularly – or relaunch courses each year – that’s not what happened in this instance.

What happened was that I decided that I was going to increase the price of an existing product from $97 to $127.

And I set a date for the price rise to take effect – August 15th – and then a week before that I sent a simple email out to my list telling them about it.

In that week I had 63 people subscribe to that product before the price rise happened.

So 63 people x $97 =   $6111 – minus Paypal’s commission is roughly $6000.

The Actual Email(s)

So you can see the actual email and realize that I’m not a copywriting genius, here’s the first email:

Hey everyone

For most of this year I’ve received 3 or 4 emails per week asking to join the waiting list for my Interactive Bass Lessons.

Not only has the program been full all year, but so has the waiting list.  So I’ve had to email back and explain this.  And I’ve hated doing it – and been wondering how to overcome this.

Now I’ve come up with a way.

Starting August 26th, I will include a column in my Membership Ezine that creates a non-interactive version of the original program.  The program gives the bass guitar beginner the instruction needed to create a simple but solid technique – and then develop that technique via a series of sequentially harder song tutorials.  (Truly, it’s learn songs, not scales).

The lessons will contain PDF and Video Instruction, and backing tracks to play along to where appropriate.  And these lessons will be permanently available to Annual Subscribers to my Membership Ezine.

At the moment, the annual membership is just $97.  So within a year’s time you’ll have the equivalent of 45-50 lessons at your fingertips.  As well as the content of the membership Ezine.  So that’s a lot of bang for your buck.

HOWEVER – the price of the membership ezine is going up to $127 on Monday, August 15th.

If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to contact me.


The second email was literally a copy of this email 24 hours prior to the price increase with a note appended to the top saying there was 24 hours left before the price rise.

The Important Lessons To Share

1)   Having A List

You’ve heard it so often that it’s become a cliché: the money is in the list.

Or variants of it: the money is not in the list; it’s in the relationship with the list.

Or it’s not the list, it’s not the relationship with the list, but the money is in the behaviour of the list.

Whatever variant you subscribe to, there’s no getting away from the fact that building a list is one of the activities that every online business should be doing.

And treat your list well – sure you’ll get some unsubscribes as you go, but don’t blast your list with offer after offer.  Your list is a pool of potential clients – look after them by sending quality information and the investment in time that takes will be repaid down the line.

2)   Creating Your Own Products/Services

Affiliate Marketing seems to be the default revenue model for most people in online business.  And I’ve nothing against Affiliate Marketing in principle – but look at the figures.  For every person creating their own products there are thousands (if not more) looking to generate revenue from affiliate marketing.

Creating your own quality products makes you more of a player in your market area – and makes you one of the few and not one of the many.

Now it’s entirely possible to make money from just affiliate sales – my buddy Steve Scott is walking proof of that.  As is Pat Flynn over at Smart Passive Income. (In fact, Pat makes an excellent income from affiliate sales – see my earlier post on 6 Lessons From SPI).

But creating your own products gives you much more flexibility – and much more leverage in your online business.

3)   Strategies That Work Will Work More Than Once

This isn’t the first time that I’ve used this strategy.

In August 2010 I did exactly the same thing – moving from a price point of $73 to $97.  In 2010 I had 16 new subscribers at that $73 price point – so around $1100.

Now that’s not a huge amount of money, but every little helps.  And when I repeated this strategy in 2011 my basic ‘seed’ list had doubled in size.

You can bet I’ll be repeating this strategy in 2012 – if my list keeps growing at the rate that it currently is, it will have doubled again.  Maybe I’ll get 100 new subscribers in August 2012!

(One thing to note – and this may have affected the conversion rate too – if you go back and re-read the email I sent out again you’ll see that although the subscription cost has gone up, the perceived value of the subscription has gone up as well).

The original idea to announce the price rise was given to me by my mentor Sean D’Souza – and he wrote an article about it too:

Why It’s Silly Not To Announce A Price Rise

4)   ‘Overnight Success’ Is Preceded by A Period Of Hard Work

If you read Benny’s post that I linked to at the top of this post, you’ll notice that there was a period of work involved before he even got his App approved and got it into the App Store.

This applies even to people who do affiliate sales – they need time to build a list before they can send that ‘killer’ email that generates $10k or $20k or whatever.

Do the work right though, and then you can leverage it multiple times.  Again this is another reason to create your own products.

5)   Have A Product Sequence

What’s even more important to my bass guitar business than the revenues generated, is the future revenues that will be generated from those 63 subscribers.

  • (i)  A significant percentage of them will resubscribe next year, and maybe the year after (currently this percentage rate is around 85%).
  • (ii) A percentage of these new subscribers will buy a higher priced course (currently this percentage rate is around 40%)
  • (iii) A percentage of these new subscribers will buy more than one higher priced course (currently this percentage is around 15%).

Again, this is another advantage of creating your own products.  It’s much harder (but not impossible) to create a product sequence if you are an affiliate seller.

6) The Importance Of A Mentor

I’ve written about mentors before on One Spoon, and why I think they are so vital.

For the last two years or so my mentor has been Sean D’Souza.  The majority of the online business strategies that I use for my bass guitar website (and this site too) are either things I learned directly from him, or things I learned from him that I adapted to suit my circumstances.

The money I’ve spent working with Sean has already been recouped several times over.  And that factor will continue to rise exponentially as my business grows.  That money was the best investment I ever made for my online business.

7)   This Is Business 101 – Not Guru Bull Shit 10,001

Online Business isn’t much different than offline business – make sure you understand sound business principles.  And more importantly, apply them to your online endeavours.


If you haven’t already, go read Benny’s initial post – and his follow up post too.  They are very inspiring.  So far, I think he’s made about $20k in a few weeks….it will be interesting to see how his App continues to generate revenue for him now it’s no longer App of the week.

Hopefully my post is equally inspiring – I’m no guru, I’m just a regular guy.  If I can do it – so can you.  The secret ingredient you need is something that most of the so-called ‘Gurus’ don’t talk about:

Hard Work Over Time.

Your Shout

Have you got any similar stories to share – that act as inspiration for folks starting out on their journey? If so, share in the comments below.

If you’ve got any questions about Benny’s success, hop over and leave a comment for him.  If you’ve got questions for me – leave me a comment below!



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