From Nobody To Somebody – Part 1

I’ve been challenged to create a new blog but not tell anyone about it. The premise is to see if a nobody can really become a somebody in the blogsphere if that person has no name behind him.

In this experiment you would detail your strategy, hardships and successes at starting this new blog (an experiment) but never mention the actual blog url/name. You can always sell it off at the end, or give it away on as massive super challenge/reward… to gain a ton of publicity for john chow dot com.

It has been mention that one of the reasons John Chow dot Com got so big was because I had an established name as the owner of The TechZone and TTZ Media Network. By creating a successful blog as a nobody, I will be able to prove once and for all, that anybody can do this. In part 1 of this series, I want to talk about laying down the foundation.

It Will Not Be a Make Money Online Blog

You know, it truly amazes me that a person who has never made a dime online would start a blog about making money online. That’s like me starting a blog on how to fly a plane and expecting people to come and read it. I don’t know how to fly a plane. Why would I make a blog about it? However, people see me pull down over $12,000 per month by blogging about making money online and suddenly everyone wants a piece of the action. It doesn’t work that way.

John Chow dot Com started off as a personal blog about my ramblings. It turn into a make money online blog and developed a following because I am an authority on the subject. I’ve been in the game for a long time. I survived the dot com crash and I own an ad network that serves millions of ads every month.

I get tons of emails everyday from new bloggers asking how they can make money with their make money online blog. I answer their question with a question, “Why would I want to read your blog?” When you can answer that, you are on your way.

I’ve decided to keep the topic of the nobody blog a secret for now. However, it will be on something that I know very well.

It Will Not Be Hosted on a Free Blogging Service

If you’re truly serious about making money from blogging, then get the hell out of or any other free blog hosting services. If you can’t afford to pay $4.95 a month for a BlueFur hosting plan, then you have no business making money on the Net.

As your blog getting bigger, you’ll start to understand the power of your brand. And you cannot create a brand when your blog has in the URL! This is not to say you should never use a free hosting service. By all means, use them to get your feet wet. However, the longer you stay with a free blog host, the harder it is to make money with it. Many ad networks (like TTZ Media) will not deal with a blog hosted by free blog host. Because of this, the nobody blog will be have its own domain name and web hosting.

$100 Budget

While it would be easy to pour thousands of dollars into the nobody blog to acquire tens of thousands of readers in the first month, this is beyond the ability of the average blogger. Therefore, I have set a budget that I believe everyone should be able to afford. Of the $100 budget, $8.95 will go for a domain name and $4.95 will go to pay the first month of web hosting. I expect the blog to cover hosting costs after the first payment.

The remaining $86.10 will go into blog promotion. That’s a pretty tight promotion budget but I have a few ideas to leverage the limited funds. I’ll talk about that in part two.

At What Point Is The Blog a Somebody?

I will open this question up for discussion. How much would a nobody blog have to make before it becomes a somebody? $100 a month? $1000 a month? $10,000 a month? Give me a number. The amount you pick will help me decided when to reveal the name and URL of the nobody blog. Until the blog hits that amount, no one will know where it is.

218 thoughts on “From Nobody To Somebody – Part 1”

  1. says:

    I think $3k US where someone could quit their job would be fair.

    1. April says:

      I agree, that should be about the minimum. Less than that amount would still be great but not enough to be a “somebody”.

      1. Steven says:

        This is definitely the target goal for many. It is a good number indeed

        1. Jack Book says:

          WOw! John Chow..
          Always challenge your self! there is no limit! Bless you!

          Someday, i will be somebody that have a dine with you and darren rowse! that is my goal!

      2. MDB says:

        I agree, if you can earn enough to be a “pro” blogger then you will be a “somebody”. $3-4k sounds about right.

        I assume there is some rule in there that you can’t add a link in there from John Chow or do a ReviewMe on yourself 😈

        1. SELaplana says:

          and it will be better if one earns $10K a month… I think, i am near to that…. πŸ™‚

    2. Mybloggo says:

      I also will quit my job if i can earn $3k Per month

      1. NSpeaks says:

        And I would stop looking for a job If I am able to earn that much. πŸ˜†

        1. shaun says:

          I agree 3k is a nice round number, it is a very good income for a blog and pays more than some jobs out there.

          1. mason says:

            $36k a year from blogging is a very obtainable number for “nobodies”. Go john go!

      2. That would be what I make working outside the home…I would totally quit if I could make that per month…I think $3000 a month is a good bar.

      3. JerkyBeef says:

        Yeah i would too…

        well, probably not I think i would just become a more confident employee knowing that i don’t have to depend on the check. How backwards is that… haha…

      4. Geedos says:

        Heck – this is John Chow – I think you should aim higher!

        10k per month! Come on stretch yourself

    3. There are so many people making absolutely nothing online right now that I think 1k a month would be fair. Any limit higher than that would be pure gravy.

      This is sort of what I’m trying to do with my Blogging Experiment, although I have attached my name to it. Luckily, I’m not at all well known online and certainly not by my real name which is what I use on my blog. I’ve set my goal at “a full time income” which I’ve got to say is definitely not 3k a month. I’ve got a wife and a mortgage, I’m not sure what the price of living is where BlueFur is from but 36k a year isn’t exactly living the high life.

      1. says:

        But $3,000 is enough to proove you can do it as a nobody. If he can get to $3,000 a month, its only a matter of time before you get to 4,5,6 grand a month…

        1. Well, it’s not always just a matter of time but yes, I agree that’s more than enough to prove you can do it as a “nobody” that’s why I think 1k would be fine.

      2. Marc says:

        I earn about $500/month now without working too hard at it. I’m a nobody. $1K isn’t even close to being a somebody in this business.

    4. Yeah, at the very least.. 3k. but I say 4k.

    5. says:

      As the person who emailed you and got you to start this new mini-series (I’m Kyle), I agree. $3,000 a month is enough to live off of and a good number to go with.

      If you can get to $3,000, it could also be grown way past that with more time and effort. But $3,000 a month is enough proof that its successful.

      I wonder how long it takes to get there as a nobody. I guess we’ll see! I first emailed you the challenge not knowing if I would get an answer. Thanks! This is awesome and a really interesting mini-series I think will be a publicity getter for your blog.

      Good luck, I’ll be watching with interest!

      1. says:

        After reading comments, anywhere between 3 and 5 thousand should be enough to proove it.

        What do you think John? How much do you think a blog should make before you deem it a success? $3,000 would be well on the way… but $5,000+ would be a decent income.

        Up to you!

        1. Steven says:

          Nah, lets keep it at $3000. You do not need to make more than that to prove you’re a somebody. The purpose isn’t to see how much the blog could essentially pump out, if you’re making $3000 (which is definitely enough for most to live off of and quit their day time jobs), I think thats more than enough to prove you’re a somebody. Anything more, is pretty much a bonus.

    6. Mat says:

      Well John it depends how much money you want to make out of it.

      Let’s just say you get it to $1k a month and then reveal your identity.

      $1k a month is very credible so there’d be no complaints there…. And you’d then be able to accelerate the money making potential of your blog because of the thousands of visits pouring into it once you give it the publicity.

      Another point to remember is that you’re going to make a mistake at some point. There will be a time where you slip-up and your identity will be un-masked, or a switched-on reader of your new blog picks up something in the syntax of your posts. This might be at 250 a month or 5000 a month. But it’s gonna happen, despite you wanting to release the name at a time and date of your choosing. So if you keep a target of $1000, which barely anyone is making, you reduce that risk.

    7. 40hourstogo says:

      I agree, $3k a month is more than I made right out of college.

      1. Mybloggo says:

        $3k USD in my country is about RM9000…Normally after college only can make RM1500++(500USD)

    8. Tony says:

      Is it really about the money? I make a lot more than 3g a month but I am a nobody. To be a somebody wouldn’t some other form of metric be better say to be mention on 10 of the top 1000 bloggers or to have 3 posts in digg etc etc

      1. Steven says:

        The challenge was issued to John in response of the fact he is able to make what he can because he was already well known. He needs to prove he can make money as an unmarked name, thats why the money is determining factor here of whether you’re a somebody or not. Otherwise I could see why you would consider the other factors into play.

    9. Michael Sandoz says:

      That’s a great number… $3,000 per month.

    10. Eric says:

      3K should be a very nice figure.
      I hope I can learn from you πŸ˜›
      Your blog is one of my top favorites!!!!

      Good luck

    11. Marko says:

      I think $4K a month is good.

    12. Sunnye says:

      I agree wholeheartedly although I probably would at 2k.

  2. Sahil says:

    Oh you mean something that you know very well..
    Let me guess… is it parenting? πŸ˜‰

    1. My guess is either food, cars, or maybe a Canadian niche blog.

      1. I’m with BE. Food and cars seem to be John’s thing. I’m going to do some digging. πŸ™‚

  3. BeachBum says:

    How about $8,334 a month net. That would be $100,000 net a year.

    You may want to pay a little more and register your domain with a private registration.

    I give it 30 days and someone will find your footprint. I hope not, because I would love to see the results with your constraints.


    1. Debo Hobo says:

      BTW Beach Bum, I used your blog scheduling plan you suggested on your blog. 😎

      1. Michael says:

        Awesome, I am glad to hear that something I said helped someone. I appreciate your comment.

        Let me know what you think after using a schedule for a week or two. So far I love it. Now I don’t have to think about what direction to go in, I have a theme each day already set.


    2. Private domain registration is mandatory in this case. Unless he asks a friend to register (can’t be Bob the Cow)

      But I also believe someone will discover the new blog, sooner or later.

  4. Jeff Kee says:

    That’s what I’m doing with my blog.. not worrying about ads right now, just writing about my business, opinions, etc. and have it grow for a while.

  5. I would say about 1000 a month. It wouldn’t allow you to quit a day job but it would be enough to call it a successful experiment.

    Will you write all the posts yourself or use a guest blogger sometimes? Or is it part of the secret? πŸ˜‰

  6. Enkay Blog says:

    Same as Jeff Kee, I am focusing on getting the blog out there rather than focusing on making a ton of money. The more popular it is, the more money it can pull in, in the long run.

    1. The flip side of this method though is that once your blog is more established, your regular readers will have to endure the changes you make to monetize the site. If you establish a large readership and only then put ads on your site, you might end up losing readers. If you suddenly start dropping affiliate links all over the place and selling links, your readers might feel you’ve sold out etc. Monetizing early (in subtle and tasteful manner) can help avoid those types of transitions.

      1. Click Input says:

        Depends on how hard you want to monetize it… I would call the 300×250 banner spot on this blog a pretty big one.

  7. simon says:

    $1000 a month

  8. Good luck with that.

  9. The Big Fez says:

    $1000 per month would be good, but I’d guess that most new bloggers would set initial success in the $600 – $700 range.

  10. David says:

    This is exciting! I say 1,000/mo since you will be established by then and make more after that critical spot!?

  11. Debo Hobo says:

    I think $1000 per day. Perhaps you could implement the 4-Hour Work week techniques and processes so we can see it in action.

    Or perhaps that was your planned topic?

    1. Softsled says:

      $1000 per day? Wow! We might be waiting a few years.

      1. Debo Hobo says:

        Yet, for John Chow should be doable. He is trying to make a point so this blog should out do his current efforts. 😈

        1. The point is from nobody to somebody. I don’t see how this take an accurate messure of possible success if your already somebody.

          You really need to watch a nobody blogger and see if they can become somebody. That would be a true messure of the possibilities.

      2. Steve Pavlina is supposedly up to $4k a day or something nuts like that now. Although like you said, it takes years to get there.

      3. Michael Kwan says:

        Considering that John Chow dot Com makes $12k a month (about $400 a day), it would seem out of place that his “nobody” blog would need to generate 2.5x that before it becomes a somebody. I think we’d all agree that John is a “somebody” right now.

        1. Debo Hobo says:

          Why are we lowering the bar. This is a person who has become a Mogul. He should be able to replicate this model over and over again with ease. Where is the challenge if we expect ans except less?

          1. Michael Kwan says:

            If that’s your opinion, then should John not be shooting to “replicate” John Chow dot Com, getting this nobody blog to generate 12k/month?

          2. We’re “lowering the bar” so to speak because he’s not going to have the name recognition nor the strength of his network of sites behind him. Part of the reason this blog succeeded (at least from what I can tell) is because John already had a bit of a built in audience not to mention a technology forum/community to market to.

            With this new blog he’ll be starting from scratch. I’m not sure what nich John will chose but I’m willing to bet making 1k per month would put him among the top in most niches.

    2. Lol that would be more like nobody to a superstar. I think 1k a month would be reasonable, 1k a day would be an incredible accomplishment and would become well known long before he ever hit that level.

      1. Debo Hobo says:

        And I’m saying he should shoot for the stars. He gets to be evil anonymously, pull out all the stops with little to no damage to his good name. Go for it! 😈

  12. This is awesome that you are doing this John! I vote for $1,000/mo. How long do you think that would take? I’m really interested to see what kind of advertising you can do for $85. I’ve never advertised my sites because I thought it would cost too much, but I have $100 to spend! Looking forward to seeing what you do!


        1. Me four, $1000 a month is a tidy bit of extra income. Can’t wait to see how you spend your marketing budget, hurry up and get to that $1000

      1. WTF Debo? You just voted for $1,000 a day. Why the sudden change of heart back down to $1,000 a month? πŸ˜‰

  13. Andrew Shim says:

    I’d say 3K. Just one question and I’m sure many will at least be thinking it – how do we know you WILL keep to your word and NOT pull any super-duper-pow-wow strings? I mean you obviously will have means and ways to do stuff simply because you ARE John Chow.

    I suppose what I’m saying is that there has to be an impartial “overseer” so to speak to vouch for the authenticity of the experiment. That way, the results would hold so much more weight.

    I don’t mean to sound cynical John.

    1. Debo Hobo says:

      Expecially with the whole John Cow scandal 😈

      1. 40hourstogo says:

        Is John Cow the “nobody” blog????

    2. Michael Kwan says:

      That’s a good point Andrew. Most “nobodies” don’t have the same level of access and “ins” as John, so I hope he sticks to what is readily available to the average user.

      1. So far from my experience with my Blogging Experiment, it’s almost like your other connections and such limit what you can do if you’re striving to keep them separate. In many ways I think it’s a bit tougher than starting from scratch even.

        I’ve been documenting everything I do but every now and then I realize I took something for granted that “newbies” or blogging rookies might not know to do.

        This is going to be interesting.

  14. I would say $5000/month would be the right amount of money for a nobody to become a somebody.

    I just started my new blog, I will run with you!!

    Let’s you who gets there first.

    Do you accept the challenge?


    I am kidding, but keep me posted of all of your techniques.

    Francesco | Guadagnare

  15. Softsled says:

    I like the idea of the blogging income being able to pay the bills to the point where you (well maybe not you) could quit your day job. So, my vote is for $2k-$3k per month. Alot of single people survive on that amount.

  16. Jeff says:

    In order to be a ‘somebody’, it would be important to sustain a stable income over a few months.

    Therefore John, if you wish to make this a realistic experiment, I would vote for $3000/month over 3 consecutive months.

    This way ‘somebody’ can truly quit their full-time job and still support a typical family.

    1. Michael Kwan says:

      I think this is the most fair yardstick to use. $3k a month provides a livable income, but the sustainability is key.

  17. Allen Young says:

    I say $5,000 a month is a good number to shoot for.

    At $5K a month, its more than chump change, but not enough to live on and not enough to retire on. Still, at $5k a month you are more than a nobody in the bloggin world.

  18. Excellent idea. I should give it a shot.
    $5,000 sounds good. Not too high, but definetely a living.

    One Man. One Year. $100,000 online. How’s he doing it?

  19. GeekyTShirts says:

    Thats ok John,
    you can admit that you’re behind John Cow πŸ™‚

  20. Roberta says:

    I’m going with $1k a month for a successful experiment number. This is a great idea, and I was wondering if someone of your blogging expertise would be able to do it successfully starting from scratch, like most of us do when we start a new blog. Good luck, I look forward to seeing all of the steps that you’re taking and the results.

  21. Punny Money says:

    I’d say $1,000 a month is good. It took me about two years to get there, so I would expect John Chow could make it in six months.

  22. iBT says:

    This will be fun..I guess for start $1000 per month is great achivement. Any time frame?

  23. HMTKSteve says:

    $5K a month in revenue. That’s enough to quit a day job over.

    1. That’s what I’m shooting for. I’ve got roughly 11 months left to do it if I want to achieve my goal.

    2. Totally. $60k a year should have you covered easily.

  24. Mr Beach Bum says:

    I like the $5K figure as well. But it has to be the average over 3 months in order for it to qualify as being a “somebody”.

    I also think the # of subscribers should be at least 2000. If anyone has a blog with 2,000 plus people reading it regularly, that is truly a “somebody”.

    1. Debo Hobo says:

      Good point it shouldn’t just be monetary stats. What community standards will the blog need to meet ie helping other bloggers, charitable donations etc.

  25. I am voting for $1,500/month!

  26. OMGbay says:

    Oh I’m soooooooooooooo into this.

  27. Joey says:

    Hold out till you hit $6,000 in a month. That figure would let a lot of people go full time.

  28. I’ll definitely be watching this one. I vote for $1000/mo. That’s quite a bit for a blog imo.

  29. Thomas says:

    Hey! Good luck with this one. I will dedicate exclusive coverage to it 😎

  30. Great blog series John! I think if a blog can bring in about $1,500 /mo, your “somebody”. This should be a very interesting series to follow. Looking forward to it.

  31. Vincent says:

    This is awesome John, You Rock!!!

    I would say 3k a month, like it’s mentioned before,
    I would also quite my job.


  32. “It will be on something I know very well”

    Let’s see: expensive dinners? fast cars? hardware? Crashing parties? Linkbaiting?

  33. NSpeaks says:

    Great work mr John. I would vote for something around $2000-3000/month to be recognised as someboy in this buisness.

  34. Chris Austin says:

    Great idea. Nothing like stepping up to a challenge.

    Personally, my school of thought is that big goals are better than little ones. So, I’d say shoot for $4000 a month before you publish the site’s identity. It’s not really a big goal, but I’d wager you could hit that in a reasonable time frame to make the experiment worth wile.

    Also, I love your comment about the “making money” blogs that have popped up in obvious imitation to your site. People need to learn to be the chess player rather than the chess piece.

    1. A money making blog by a beginner only makes sense if its main purpose is to LEARN (and report/share lessons learned).

      If the beginner intends to TEACH, than I agree it’s pointless.

  35. I don’t think this contest really shows anything because if this is your blog you already know the techniques. It would be more interesting to see an “actually” nobody blogger or a new blogger that is provided support (budget) to see if they can make it big. The only qualification would have to be their writing skills and time to devote. The results of that would be interesting.

    Also, I would think $1,000 a month would be an achivement to consider someone from nobody to somebody.

    1. Joshua says:


      After all the time John will have spent using techniques he’s written about ON THIS BLOG already to build some random ‘nobody’ blog, everyone here could have done the same.

      Just read the first paragraph of this post by Kumiko to see what I mean:

  36. Joshua says:

    I think if you can pull $1000/month with a $100 investment you’d be proving your skills quite well.

    To aim for $5k or more would likely force quite a bit of work on you, plus drag the experiment out for too long.

    I want to see this happen with very little work, perhaps something one could repeat 5-10 times over? 😈

  37. human says:

    Happy Door? i found it? πŸ˜‰

    i vote for 1k too

  38. Jack says:

    Need contributing writers? 😈

  39. Tim McSween says:

    This is going to be a lot of fun to watch. Mitch started a similar project but it looks like things got sidelined for a little bit while his company is finishing their current project.

    I would vote for $1,000/Month. Not enough to live on, but it sure would help out with the mortgage πŸ™‚

  40. Simon says:

    I think most new bloggers would set their initial goals to between 500 and 1000 dollars per month. But at the same time I think 3-5000 would be the start of true success. I’ll go with $3000.


  41. Erik Karey says:

    Very interesting project John. I can’t wait to follow this series of posts. I would say anywhere between $3000 to $5000 dollars to become a somebody, because at that point it’s a full time salary.

  42. Dave says:

    This is a great idea…should prove to be a very interesting experiment. I vote for $1,000 month.

  43. maurizio says:

    Be somebody is $10000/mo. US Dollars :mrgreen:

    But I think you should reveal yourself at around 3-4000$.

    I was expecting 100$ as a yearly budget, which is more than my first year budget. πŸ™
    I’m very curious to see how you will spend that 80$ dollars..maybe you should lower them.

    1. Chris Austin says:

      I take it you don’t plan to advertise your business venture.

      I am no master of web advertising but, I own two off line businesses that make enough money for my wife and I (both engineers) to stay at home with our son and travel when we want. It was long and hard as we started out from scratch. But, one thing I realized (I wish I had earlier) is that you absolutely have to advertise if you want to grow your business.

      1. Geedos says:

        Totally agree with this comment – if you don’t advertise it how will anyone come across it in the blogosphere?

        I mean Coke may be a great drink but if no-one knew it existed then it wouldn’t be the success story it is today.

  44. Ron says:

    I think that instead of a monetary amount, it would make more sense to have a nobody blog be referred by several “somebody blogs” or other major sites from time to time consistently in order for it to qualify to be a somebody.

    1. tomawesome says:

      I agree. forget money measurements. let’s see how many readers you can get with a totally de-commercialized blog.

    2. Geedos says:

      What you mean like John Chow dot com???

  45. Mixmazz says:

    I say do it at $5,000/month

  46. Guillermo says:

    Let’s see… You have not said if this somebody will be working on this weblog as a full time or part time job… But let’s say that this guy will be someone if he can make 5K a month… I think it’d be enough for someone who wants to stand out of the crowd.

    Anyway… it will never be a “somebody”… It’s always you doing this John! And you already have your history and experience and so on… But well… As a last suggestion It’d be more interesting if you can add this rule” “He will follow JChow book on how to make money”

    Best regards from Waterloo, ON

    1. I believe the purpose of the experiment is to put John’s tips and the ebook to the test. Of course the results will be different if he does it than they would be if I did it.

      But we don’t actually know who will write the content, so it may as well be a ‘nobody’, only sponsored by John himself.

  47. RobMalon says:

    Money should not be porportional to the amount of readers a blog could have. That assumes you’re taking advantage of all revenue oppertunities…While a money making blog might use 3 different methods, a parenting blog might only toss up adsense. So what we’re really getting is how you are becoming a somebody by monetizing your site well, not by readers (which I think this should be changed to).

    That said, I’d say somewhere around 1k-2k readers is an acceptable number to be considered a somebody.

    1. tomawesome says:

      Rob, you were the first of the commenters to hint at my feelings: that is, why does becoming “somebody” require monetization? it seems sadly to be a given today that success on the Internet is measured by the degree of commercialization. everyone here (and John Chow of course) has completely bought into that idea. I don’t buy it.. my blog has no product, doesn’t recommend product, and avoids ads of all kinds. and am I a successful blogger? at this point I would say, “no, my blog is not a success”. does this mean I should study marketing, SEO, MLM, ebooks and whatever to monetize my site (oh and cough up for a “real” domain name)? nah. I don’t want to be that kind of “somebody”. I challenge John to create something of real value without any kind of monetization. generate readers without commerce. maybe that is un-American… anti-capitalist? can’t be done, can it?

      1. Geedos says:

        I don’t think it’s un-American or anti-capitalist – it just means you’re trying to concentrate on decent content and a large reader base who enjoy reading your posts rather than just trying to get tips on how to make as much money as possible.

        Good on you!

  48. Krillz says:

    3000 usd / month is a reasonable amount to say that you pulled that off and are actually making some good money

  49. Vladi says:

    It is beyond me why someone would prefer to be a “somebody”. If your self-esteem is lacking, I can understand your motivation to boast your success online and become a “somebody”.

    The downsides are that half a million newbies will try to rip off your work -> you generate competition once you give the masses a whiff of your success.

    Many blog owners (including myself) enjoy solid revenues (read: mid-to-high 6 figures yearly) but I would rather stab myself in the temple with a rusty knife before going around and brag about my success. Key is being low-key.

  50. uberum says:

    approx 2000 US Dollars per month I think it might be a good threshold.
    In some places this would be a very nice salary, and in other places a basic one but acceptable salary to live with.

    So 2000 USD is my suggestion.

  51. latest cell says:

    for me …500$ per month is fine but you can make 5000$

  52. CJ says:


    First off – I really admire your pluck and gumption. The energy with which you seem to be taking up this challange is really inspiring.

    Second – I’d say an acceptable goal would be $3,000/month for three straight months. Once you’ve achieved that I’d say it’s safe to say your success isn’t a fluke.

    Third – If you are successful (which I assume you will be) I really hope you’ll publish an e-book about your month to month experiences and how you did it.

    Fourth – If your budget is $100/month, how will you pay to get listed in the Yahoo Directory?

    1. Geedos says:

      I think point three is a given!

      This is an evil blog after all!

  53. Jimson Lee says:

    Since my blog is literally a brain dump of my 30 years of coaching Athletics, my experiment was to match a salary of a full-time coach, which is about $36k/year here in Canada.

    That’s about $100/day or $3000/month.

  54. 3K a month -> that would be slightly more than 10k in my local currency

  55. V. Neely says:

    $1000 per month sounds like a nice figure to start with– it might not enable you to quit your job, but it’s nothing to sneeze at.

  56. mason says:

    nice can’t wait for the results. hopefully it won’t take too long before you can post some more info on this project.

  57. Abdalla says:

    Lets make it fair:

    Your not allowed to put on TTZ media until you meet the 250K + pageviews or whatever it is now!

    Apply to a Seperate Adsense Account and seperate feedburner and so on.

    Fair or what?

  58. Joshua says:

    Another thing to consider is that to be successful you need to create and carry relationships, online and offline.

    You’ll have to lie and ‘be’ another person.

    That will limit you somewhat, but I suppose it depends on the level of evilness you are willing to employ on this one…

  59. Sue says:

    I’m really interested in this experiment you’re getting into. Good luck! It’s very inspiring. πŸ˜‰

  60. Igizmore says:

    wow john … that means your new blog will be in my level !!! well let me rejoice that while it lasts (probably a month or so) πŸ™„

  61. You’re not the only blogger participating in this experiment are you? I think I know who one of the other ones are, but how many of you are doing it?

    1. ..and – Sorry for the double comment but…

      …will the posts here slow down when you get going on the experimental one?

  62. Jason says:

    I would say $3000/month. Because you are already an expert in blogging, $1000/month would be too easy for you :mrgreen:

  63. Ginene says:

    I would say to go from a nobody to a somebody then in 6 months you should have at least 200 readers, be on the front page of google for any major keyword, have at least $4000 a month in profits and have at least someone with a misspell domain of your website. Then I would say a blogger was popular.

  64. Scott says:

    The question was “How much would a nobody blog have to make before it becomes a somebody?” If $3k a month is very obtainable, then that doesn’t seem like a somebody, that seems like an anybody. So I say $100K a year. THAT would make you a somebody, because very few people actually make that and people would stand up and take notice.

    1. John Chow says:

      99% of blogs on the Net can’t make more than $100 a month. So if $100 isn’t obtainable for 99%, what does making $3K mean?

      1. TipsSupremo says:

        Initially, I wanted to vote for $3k a month, but after reading John’s reply:”99% of blogs on the Net can’t make more than $100 a month”

        I guess $500 is a realistic challenge for a “nobody”.

  65. kalpesh says:

    Blogging has become very competitive. If you are new you have to struggle hard enough to get noticed. earning $3k from blogging, people think it’s easy. let them try their hand.

    1. Michael says:

      I wish you luck in this challenge, you have an edge over a real nobody as you know all the “tips” and “tricks”, but I am sure we can all learn from your experience.

  66. the trasher says:

    it seems like everybody thinks that 3000 usd per month is ok…i think the same….

    hope you be able to prove it for all those vanish people

    best regards…


  67. John, I’ve been critical of you lately but this project is exactly the type of thing I was hoping to see from you! Well done!

  68. Jason says:

    According to NSpeak about page,, I highly doubt that it’s your experiment. 😯

    Mind me 😈

  69. James says:

    This will be fun to watch but I think the result is already known. It will be successful. I think any blog that the owner puts regular serious content and promotion into can be successful. Provided there is useful content and not just the “I went out last night and got wasted” kind of stuff only your friends would read (and maybe not them).

    1. I think there are quite a few bloggers out there that would emphatically disagree with you on that one.

      1. I would be one of them. I spend a lot of time on my blog and I’m thankful for all three of my readers – who are not reading about my drunken escapades..and I’ve been blogging now for a minute :).

        I would ask you James, in what time frame would you expect to see that kind of progress, $3000 a month that is..?

  70. Jeff says:

    I agree with some of the comments above regarding various limitations that regular folks face, such as not being able to get in to major ad programs due to low traffic, low Technorati ranking, and many other weaknesses.

    John Chow’s name and reputation goes a long way. If this experiment were to be ‘pure’, it is very crucial to have absolutely to ties to the John Chow or TTZ brand, or traffic stats, Alexa/Technorati influences plus many, many other perks.

    John Chow should rely simply on his content and not on parody material(ala Cow and etc). I believe everybody would be excited to follow your journey as a ‘nobody’.

  71. Jason says:

    I think I have already found your secret. It’s NSpeaks, isn’t it?

  72. I’m going to go out of the normal responses here and say at least 4k per month is needed to be considered “big time” as a blog. Then you’ve “made it”.

  73. I don’t think it will work. Someone will out you some how. They will make it known that it is a site created by John Chow, and then it will be instantly popular. It will be interesting if you can remain unknown.

    Even if this blog did grow because of TTZ there is no reason you shouldn’t be able to leverage your success. You only have to hit it big once. Look at Kevin Rose for example. Digg is popular, so anything that he creates gets a huge buzz from the digg community. He can leverage the digg users because they worship him for some reason. I mean, go make a negative comment about one of kevin’s projects and watch how fast you get buried.

    1. I agree, Success might be a long time coming but when it does and people see what you have to offer them, it only makes sense that the next production and so on would be a big deal.

      However, if one of those projects by such a successful person were to be a flop? Would their products still be as sought after?

      That’s why I think this project will be awesome. I’ll be anxious to see the result.

  74. Hector says:

    I think $3,000 per month is a very decent number and enough to make you quit your job.

    However, I would add a deadline to reach this level of income, Would 6 months be ok?

  75. Anraiki says:

    In my opinion, a blog becomes a somebody onces that somebody is committed to become the blog.

    That means the person has to blog to be the blogger.

    In terms of making money, there shouldn’t be of any price to make anyone a blogger.

    You can surely calculate though!
    12 Months x Money you Make Off Blog = Yearly Income

    So if you make at least 10 bucks, 100 bucks, thats still pretty damn good.

    Knowing that, John chow is hitting over 100k a year.

    1. Anraiki says:

      In conclusion, its take at least 0.12 cent to make the blog a someone.

  76. Casey says:

    I think if you can make $1000/month from your blog then you are a “somebody”. Or at least well on your way.

    1. Indeed $1000 a month should be enough to prove the point.

  77. Adsense Tips says:

    I think generally you are somebody as long as you can make a living with the income from the blog. 4 to 5k a month should do it.

  78. Kitty says:

    I can’t quit on $3,000 a month! my mortgage alone is almost that 😐

    How about $5,000 a month?

  79. Jonathan says:

    if you are starting as a nobody, try not to build links from high ranking sites coming from your huge network of internet friends, if you do that, you are cheating.
    If you start as a nobody, you would submit to free directories, post comments on blogs, forum signatures and exchange links as a regular bread and butter guy.

    1. Joshua says:

      But what about creating linkbait or other techniques John knows how to do?

      Isn’t the point to prove his techniques, not just pretend to be average and hope to make it?

  80. Robert says:

    I too vote for the $1000/month number. It seems like a good milestone that people would equate with being a success. I also think that having a traffic number in mind would also be good.

    As readers of your blog know, traffic=$$. Maybe you could go with a percentage increase per month or something like that.

    The one thing from this experiment that I am really looking forward to is seeing what affiliate programs you plan to use since several of the ones you use on this blog require huge traffic numbers to even qualify. Having said that, thanks for talking Kontera into letting some of us less fortunate bloggers get into their network πŸ™‚

  81. Dan says:

    go mid-way at $2,000 a month πŸ™‚

  82. Jonathan says:

    I think $1,000 it’s a good number, making that money puts you above millions of blogs literally, and it also shows that the blog can keep growing.

  83. Erlend says:

    Hi second the first suggestion of $3000 per month.

    Best of luck! It’ll be interesting to see how fast you get there!

  84. I believe $3000.00 per month is reasonable as a recurring income for an established blog with less than 1 year in existence.

    However based on the $100.00 start-up the question is how soon after could this project generate a sum total of $1000.00 (earning the first 1000.00 would turn you $900.00 in pure internet marketing gold-profit)thereon the amount earned could be reinvested for future gain.

    Take a look at this scenario everyone, in the event the John managed to garner the first $1000.00 with 100 green magic beans and based on the “magic potion” used in the mix, here now lies the posibility to generate $10000.00 per month with a new budget of $1000.00 (i.e the total amount earned being re-invested),then life would be ‘mountains of gold’ for the average webmaster if one were to monetize a blog using whatever strategies employed to earn $9000.00 net income over expenditure of $1000.00.

    If one would wish to make this challenge a bit more difficult the following conditions would have to be met:-

    1.The domain name would have to be “fresh” with no significance whatsover.

    2.No free ads on TTZ media no any backlink, banners,or text links on websites of friends within John’s own circle of friends any transaction to monetise this blog must be strictly arms lenght.

    3.No autogenerated advertising or linking to directories with auto-blogging software of any kind whatsoever.

    4.No buzz hyping from fellow cohorts.

    5. No black hat .PHP scripting

    6. No inadvertising leaking of project outlines to heavy forum owners such as the warriors forum or digital point.

    7. No “giving away” your scent by making your writing style obvious in forums, message boards, guest books and other blogs.

    8. All conditions must be met under the no-namer disguise with only $100.00 to spare and no more.

    The surpise feat to be achieved is to actually earn $1000.00 with your first $100.00 and yes, I would allow for you to open an advertising campaign with a Google, Yahoo, MSN etc. use your PPC know how to genrate extra capital or revenue with a trusted affiliate product that has a reasonable take up purchase rate for example you were able to generate 12 sales at $50.00 commission each with a Google Adword budget of $60.00 of the remaining $86.00 that will give you an extra $600.00 to be on your merry way.

    Royan Shaw
    Ezinet Global Marketing
    Actually I’m a webfinancial Wizard

    1. Joshua says:

      Why not just make him code the site in HTML and PHP from scratch, within his daily time limit of 15 minutes, while using a 286 with only Windows 3.11 operating system installed?

      Seriously, why don’t people just apply the techniques presented here and do it themselves?

      Wouldn’t that be like a bunch of ‘nobodys’ turning themselves into ‘somebodys’?

      1. I don’t think those conditions are all that restrictive really. I dunno about all that “no black hat” stuff though as that decision is pretty much up to each individual blogger, even if they’re “nobody”.

  85. Titus-Armand says:

    1. $2k/month in a 3 month timeframe.
    2. Linkbacks from popular blogs in that niche.

  86. I for one am just excited about this series. I can’t wait to read more!

  87. Deano says:

    I reckon about $500 a month; should be enough for a car loan (though not for the sort of car you have in your header πŸ™‚
    Also you should not be able to link from your blogs (a noob won’t know you), though you can do your review exchange thingy.

  88. JerkyBeef says:

    Finally a blogging challenge that is worth keeping up with…

    I’d say $3k/ a month and up…

    Oh… wait… i think i know which route you may be taking… tisk… tisk…

  89. kanute says:

    Hi, just wanted to find out if you do “guest posting” and if you do on what topics… Did a good post for the Thinking Blog (Ilker Yoldas)
    I also guess its a good way to promote a blog, get precious backlinks and spend No money

    Kabatology: Open Source, Linux

  90. Nomar says:

    I think 1,000 a month is an amount that you are somebody..

  91. All you need to do is hit digg 3-4 times and you’re done!

  92. Fatgadget says:

    Hi John

    This sounds like a great idea.

    I think you should go for a target of $1,000 a month in income from the new blog, and give yourself a time period of say six month to achieve it.

    What you could also do is get a couple of people who are independant from yourself to monitor the blog from inception(but they are not allowed to tell anyone about it), this way when you publish your results in six month time, you would have definte proof that you have acheived your goal.


  93. Actually John You would have already cheated.
    You already possess the knowledge,experience and expertise to set up a profitable blog.

    You are entering this with an advantage 99.99% of all all bloggers wouldn’t have doing this for the first time.

    1. says:

      Many of us know exactly how John has monetized his blog… he has told us! The difference is we don’t have the traffic of publicity he does…

  94. sandossu says:

    There’s a difference from the beginner blogger, but i’m curious if will be able to do it.

    Good Luck

  95. I’ll say around $3,000 – 5,000 a month in revenue John.

  96. Aussie Poker says:

    Fantastic idea

    I’m looking forward to seeing how this pans out as novice poker affiliate. I’m looking forward to applying some of your techniques to some of my new projects

  97. I think 1k a month is fair. I don’t think too many bloggers make even half that..

  98. Geedos says:

    Is this just another way of attracting MORE readers and MORE attention to this blog??

    You know, the only way to find out how the “nobody” blog is getting on it to read this blog??

    Very evil!

  99. Lorna says:

    This is something I should keep my eye on, so Stumbled it is.

    What about this — can you get the blog to make around USD2,000/= in 3 months? Now that I consider a somebody.

  100. dcr says:

    I’ll agree with those who are saying $3000/month. That’s about $100 per day. That’s a full-time income for some people, and at least a reasonable part-time income for others.

    I think that to be “somebody” for the purposes of this challenge, the money earned has to be equal to a full-time income that many people could live comfortably on. And, it would still be a good chunk of change for those that would want more.

    That’s not to say that making $500 or $1,000 wouldn’t be nice, but to really prove that anybody can make a go at earning some good money online, I think you need to reach the $3,000 per month level. That’s just under 25% of your July earnings…

  101. tim says:

    I think measure in term of money is not enough.
    Suggest target to aim USD$3000 per month (that’s 25% of John earning last month), plus 1800 rss subscriber, plus alexa ranking within 10k.

    John, i would like to follow your suggest step to build a blog as you mentioned “from nobosy to somebody”.Please write more info for that.Thanks!

    –blog for dream–

    1. tim says:

      Actually my challege even harder. I start with to earn the $100 for my 1st .com blog, hope can success. Now is $15 in my Adsense. Still long way to go! πŸ˜›

      –blog for dream–

  102. Dee says:

    What a cool idea.

    Like some others mention, I think someone will discover the site within a few weeks. We already know it will be hosted by bluefur, and about a topic Mr Chow know lots about.

    Keeping that in mind I think $1,000 is about right. And I agree with Tim – that the goal should include rss subscribers, alexa rating etc.

    This will be interesting to follow. Though I have no doubt that Mr Chow will do it.

  103. Pingback: ah tim The BLOggER
  104. Budget Babe says:

    What absolutely perfect timimg! I am truly keen ot follow your experient John. As for the amount, I would say $1,000 a month as this is a nice addition to say a full-time salary (it would cover most of my monthly mortgage!).

  105. alan_gbk says:

    I choose to generate USD50 per month for each of my blog and I own 100 blogs.

    1. Budget Babe says:

      Blimey! When do you find the time (let alone the inspiration) in writing so many posts and keeping up with 100 blogs! One is enough for me – I want to deliver quality, not quantity. It seems like far too much effort. I’d go mad!

  106. Tim says:

    JohnChow accepted an challenge to build a BLOG from “nobody to somebody”.I like this idea to prove that Internet can success people, and I hope he show us how he do that . Of course, I believe he can do that!

  107. says:

    ingenious, i wonder how long it would take you to do this you need a time limit. i am trying to get rich in 3 months or so. so Chow you can’t keep this going forever.

  108. Joe says:

    “You know, it truly amazes me that a person who has never made a dime online would start a blog about making money online.”

    Ha ha. This caught my eye. I’ll bet most of your readers will just ignore it though.

    Hey if John sets up email subscribe to this blog, can someone let me know? Thanks.

  109. says:

    All 😯 on ya! I agree, 3k sounds good.

  110. KingJacob says:

    Id say 3-4k is a good amount of cash per month to prove its possible.

  111. The Old Vic says:

    You can have a free blog and still have your own domain name – my domain name above – is a blogger blog that doesn’t cost anything just the cost of buying the domain name – it’s easy enough to do even I did it !

  112. Valentin says:

    LOL !

    I admit I had just a shallow view on above +200 comments.

    Yet, why MONEY would make the blog be successfully ? Just because that is few people standards and is the ONLY way they can blog ?

    What is a blog ?

    A money making machine or a way to show your opinion ?

    Tell me is first option ! mwuahahaha

    If would be after me, that “new blog” would be successfull when will reach 51 unique comments-commenters in average, two moths in a row.
    Not readers, not author comments, not duplicate comments of same commenter.

    Dayly average of at least 51 unique comments for two moths in a row.

    Is easy to blog for only readers ..

    What`s hard is to make them to get involved ! To comment ! To interact with you (or other commenters) !

    Well ?

  113. frank says:

    A somebody would be somebody who
    has a contribution.

    One how give value to the visitor.

    How much you make a month is not the point
    in being “somebody”.

    But if you want to make money with a blog
    you better track your income versus
    spendings very carefully.

    It doesn`t really matter, ow you get the traffic. But you need traffic thats a fact.

    The difference of making money or loosing money in this market is all about tracking. Thats it.

    But it may become very time consuming and even worse it`s not an easy task at all.

    You may get payed in a different currency than your local money. When promoting offers in various currencies tracking is really confusing.

    You want help with that?


  114. Sandip says:

    I think $2K is enough – if it runs 12 in a row.
    Its enough to prove to all that ‘somebody’ stuff.

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