Welcome to my new MC Blog Feature: Throwback Thursday!
I’ve been in the Internet Marketing field since 1996… and boy, have I got PLENTY of “interesting” memories from back in the IM dinosaur ages… *rawwwrrr!*
I started my online business in August 1996. Connected via America Online (AOL)… totally screaming across the net like a rock star on my 2400bps dial up modem. Hard to imagine, but back then, none of my friends were “online”… and upset with me on a regular basis because my phone would be busy while I’m working… ahahahaha!
Anyway, the interwebs was a very different place back then… nothing like what we have today. It was so brand new that I was the only IM-er that I knew of… because there were no IM circles to belong in yet, and “Internet Marketing” was done mainly by email. So… how did I find my leads? Why, by posting on the AOL community boards, of course!
Surprisingly, peeps actually responded to my Market Place and Classifieds posts… but boy, was I excited when a dude by the name of Sanford Wallace came into the scene and taught us all how to harvest and mail to 100 gazillion emails using his software… the Floodgate!
OMG I’m dying just recalling this!! I looked at the guy like he was a GENIUS! I mean, he created a software to quickly harvest hundreds and thousands of email addresses… and, send personalized messages to each and every one of them! And I’m proud to say, I made my first $1,000 by sending email spam. But it wasn’t a bad thing back then (I’m NOT joking)… weird, huh? I don’t recall receiving any complaints from my mailings… I don’t even think there was a “report spam” button yet!
Anyway, I collected hundreds and thousands of emails from AOL, CompuServe, and JUNO (lol… still chuckling) and emailed everyone with an invite to my very first ezine… the AimDIRECT Entrepreneur Ezine. (I’ll explain the name in another post…) Got several THOUSANDS of opt-ins from that… NO JOKE. And each and every week, I’d whip up a cool marketing article, and the issue would be “sponsored” by 3 Premium Ads ($75/$150/$400) as well as up to 7 “classifed” ads ($25/each)!
And lookie! My list was powered by “OptIn Lightning”!!
Oh, Brian Garvin… wherefore art thou? 🙂
I was like… “Wow, these people don’t even know me and they’re reading MY stuff… sending ME money to place their MLM ads… every… freakin… week!!” It was like planting this incredible money tree… seriously!
Several years later… I received an unsolicited commercial email (a more business sounding term for SPAM… lol) from a man named Allen Says inviting me to join the Internet Marketing Warriors… lol… and I joined!
Ahhh memories… hahaha 🙂
But in all seriousness… that must’ve been one of the best spam I’ve ever received, and responded to. It was from what I started to learn inside that members site, that I found so many other ways to make money online – without spamming. 🙂 And the connections I’ve made in there back then… are still some of my strongest personal *and* business connections today!
Granted, I no longer frequent that site because it’s not the same in there anymore… but writing about this brings back some interesting memories from when I first started as an IM-er… (hand me my walker and help me pull my pantyhose up, will ya?)
Anyway… that was a lot more throwing-back than I planned… lol. Let me close up this edition of “Throwback Thursday” with…
Remember to respect your elders!