The following resources are ones that I find invaluable in my business and I thought it would be helpful if I provided you with a list of them. I will add more as I discover them, so you may want to bookmark this page for future reference.
Please note that some of the links on this page are affiliate links, and at no cost to you, Â I will earn an affiliate commission if you decide to make a purchase. Please understand that I have used all these products and found them helpful, so that is why I’ve included them on this page. Please do not spend any money these products unless you can see how doing so is going to benefit your business in some way.Â
- WordPress – #1 blogging platform in the world. Totally free and super flexible.Â
- StudiopressÂ -Â The Genesis Framework empowers you to quickly and easily build incredible websites with WordPress.Â Whether you’re a novice or advanced developer, Genesis provides the secure and search-engine-optimized foundation that takes WordPress to places you never thought it could go.
- ProfitsThemeÂ - This is the theme that I use for my membership site. It is absolutely killer and makes it extremely easy for me to create/manage every aspect of my membership site.Â Watch the sales videoÂ and you’ll see what I mean.
- ThesisÂ - Widely recognized as some of the best WordPress themes available.
- OptimizePressÂ - Need to make a killer sales or squeeze page? This is THE theme to use.
- Page One Curator – When it comes to content curation, this handy piece of software has no match. Created by Paul Clifford, P1 Curator will help you to create terrific looking posts in record time while still producing content that will get indexed by search engines. If you don’t know what curation is, listen to the podcast that I did with Paul.
- Heil PR40 Mic – This is THE microphone to use if you want to sound like you are a radio DJ. I use it and love it…especially when combined with the mic boom and mixing board below.
- Heil Mic boom – This is what I use to hold the mic up.
- Behringer 1202 Mixing Board – If you want to have really professional sound, a mixing board is a must. This is the one that I use.
- Roland MP3 RecorderÂ - When I’m recording a podcast, I like to have two ways to record it at the same time in case one fails. I use the Roland recorder as one way and Skype Call Recorder as the other.
- Skype Call Recorder – If you are interviewing someone over Skype, this software will record audio and video for you.
- Bluebrry Powerpress PluginÂ - Getting your podcast published in the iTunes store can be a paid. This plugin makes it easy!
- Amazon S3 – This is where I store all my large audio & video files.
- Audio Technica Headphones – So I can hear my guest’s voice as it goes into the mixing board.
- Easy Video PlayerÂ - This is the tool that I use to host and display all my sales videos as well as all the training videos that are within myÂ membership site. Using it allows me to very easily upload, configure the player controls, and keep in total control of my video library. I highly recommend this tool for your video library.
- ScreenflowÂ - This is my preferred tool for video editing on a Mac. It’s super easy to use and produces excellent results.
- CamtasiaÂ - Much like Screenflow, except it’s slightly more powerful and has a PC version.
- Bamboo Pen & TabletÂ - This is the tool that I use for my digital whiteboard videos.
- Canon T3i – This is the SLR camera that I use to record all my video. The quality is awesome and the it’s totally usable by someone who isn’t a camera guru (aka: me)
- Pad Prompter – Want to turn your iPad into a teleprompter? This is how I do it. You will also need this software.
- Wireless mic set – If you want to be able to move around while shooting video, you can either use a lapel mic or this wireless setup.
- Tripod – This is the one that I use.
- Studio Lights – Unless you are shooting outdoors, having studio lights is a must. This is the kit that I use.
- Wistia – This is the service that I’ve just started to use for all my video hosting. Their player is superfast (no buffering) and they have more controls and reporting than other video hosts that I have tried. Definitely first class.
Product Distribution and Shopping Carts
- Clickbank – this is by far the most popular company for information products. They will run your entire affiliate program and make sure everyone is paid on time. I use them for many of my products.
- Paypal – free to use, easy to setup, and widely known. If you are looking for a super-easy way to get paid, Paypal is the place to go. Just know that as your volume of transactions for information products increases, they can be a pain to deal with.
- SECockpitÂ - This is BY FAR the best keyword tool on the market. Not only does it find all the long-tail keywords that are easy to rank for, it also provides you with the SEO competition data right away so you don’t have to spend extra hours analyzing one word at a time. Â This business would be a lot more difficult withoutÂ SECockpit. I have created an extensive training video here.
- Long Tail ProÂ - If SECockit is too expensive for you, my next best choice is Long Tail Pro as it is a very capable tool. Its just a little slower than SEcockpit because it is not a web-based application like SECockpit is.
- Wordtracker – Another very powerful keyword research tool. Comes in both free and paid versions, plus they include quite a bit of training.
- Google Adwords Tool – Very helpful for assisting you in managing your Adwords campaigns. Tells you the search volume, cost per click and level of advertiser competition.
- Bluehost – I have many of my sites hosted with Bluehost because they are very cost effective and super easy to use.
- Hostgator – This is the first hosting company I ever used and they are very popular.
- LiquidWeb – The OIL blog has grown to the point where I needed a dedicated server and a higher level of support. The folks over at LiquidWeb really saved my bacon a few times and I’m a big fan
- Google AdsenseÂ -Â Adsense allow you to earn money by placing relevant ads on your website. Free to use, but you have to register for an account.
- Google Adwords – Â If you want to begin using pay per click advertising on Google, you can select keywords and locations and you pay each time someone clicks on your advertisement. This can significantly boost traffic to your site, however, if you aren’t careful, you can spend a lot of money quickly, so testing is key.
Testing & Tracking Your Results
- Google Analytics – This is probably the most popular website analytics software around. Totally free and very capable. Just sign in with your Google account.
- Clicky – A free alternative to Google analytics. ProvidesÂ real-time data for your site traffic. Comes in free and paid versions.
- Google Website Optimizer – This is an amazing tool for split-testing different variations on your website. Totally free to use and tons of training material provided.
- oDesk – This is an amazing resource site for finding contractor talent from around the globe. I use it extensively and really like how it allows me to track what my VA is doing for me.
- eLance -Â For businesses looking to staff-up a team on an hourly or project basis, Elance offers instant access to qualified professionals who work online and provides the tools to hire, view work as it progresses and pay for results.
- 99Designs -Â 99designs.com is the premier marketplace for crowdsourced graphic design and where I go to when I need a logo.
- Speechpad – Used for transcribing audio files (podcast) into text. Very affordable and super popular.
- AweberÂ - This email marketing company makes my life a lot easier. All the optin forms on this site were super easy to make and I didn’t need a developer. Creating lists andÂ auto-respondersÂ couldn’t be any easier.
- Infusionsoft – If you want email marketing on steroids, plus CRM and an eCommerce shopping cart, all rolled into one, Infusionsoft is the way to go. Virtually all the big-time Internet Marketers I’ve met use Infusionsoft. I switched over to it in the summer of 2012 and have never looked back. Simply AWESOME! (and fairly expensive)
Membership Site Software
- Digital Access Pass – This is what I use on my membership site. Their support is really awesome and the product is continually being developed with new features. Allows me to integrate with all my payment processors and protect whatever content I need to for the various product levels that I create.
- ProfitsTheme – This is the theme that I use onÂ myÂ membership site. Can be used as a stand alone tool, or in combination with Digital Access Pass. If you combine them, you will end up with much more control and reporting – which I highly recommend.
- WPZonBuilder – This is the best plugin I’ve ever seen (and used) for creating Amazon affiliate sites. It allows me to create gorgeous product posts with a few clicks of the mouse. It also lets me drip posts on the site, or backdate them. Go to the sales page and watch the video and you’ll see how powerful it is. SEO Pressor – This plugin makes optimizing your pages as simple as following a checklist. Great if you use a VA.
- Premium List Magnet – Really boosted my conversions when I started to use it. Allows you to create a fade in ad or optin box on your site. No coding required and super-easy to use.
- Digg Digg – This is the plugin that I use to create the vertical bar on the side of all of my posts that allows visitors to easily tweet, pin, or share my content on their social networks. It’s super easy to use and FREE.
- Facebook Fan Box – This is the plugin that I use to create the Facbook fan box that is in my sidebar. Having social proof is really important, and this plugin is a terrific way to show that you have it. It’s FREE.
- Growmap Anti Spambot – As your site gets more popular, comment spam can become a real problem. This is the plugin that I use to eliminate comment spam and it’s FREE.
- Limit Login Attempts – As your site becomes more popular, more people will try and hack into it. This plugin helps me to eliminate that threat and it’s FREE.
- Pretty Link – This is the plugin that I use to manage all my affiliate links. By using it, you can clean up an long link and make it short and memorable. It’s FREE.
- Subscribe to Comments Reloaded – This is the plugin that I use to allow readers to subscribe to a comment thread so that they will be notified of upcoming comments. It’s FREE.
- Google XML Sitemaps – This plugin will auto-create an XML sitemap for you that will help with your SEO efforts. It’s FREE.
- Welcome Splash – This plugin will allow you to create a welcome splash page for your blog that will drive email optin conversions through the roof. A welcome splash page is the page that people see when they first visit your blog. This is my welcome splash page.
- LegalZoom – Need a company set up? LegalZoom is fast and inexpensive.
- SocialAdrÂ - Google doesn’t much care for manufactured links these days, so much of what used to work no longer does. With that said, this tool remains one of my most prized resources because it allows me to automate the creation of social links from sites that Google loves. This is the only tool that I have ever used to build links to the OIL blog.
- $100 Startup by Chris GuillebeauÂ -Â InÂ The $100 Startup,Â Chris Guillebeau shows you how to lead of life of adventure, meaning and purpose â€“Â andÂ earn a good living. I absolutely loved this book.
- Millionaire Messenger by Brendon BurchardÂ - If you have ever thought you wanted to turn your expertise in a topic into a business, this is THE book to read. I am literally using the advice from this book as my own roadmap.
- 4 Hour Work Week by Tim Ferris – This is the book that started it all in terms of raising awareness in the general public about how to use the Internet and passive income to create the lifestyle of your dreams. If you haven’t read it yet, it’s a must-read.
- Good to Great by Jim Collins – This is probably one of the greatest business books of our time and I highly recommend you read it to learn about the Hedgehog strategy. If you’ve ever wondered what separates the average company from one that goes on to greatness, this book will help you to discover the answer.
- Niche Site MasteryÂ is a membership site that I created to teach other people how to build an authority blog or website. If you would like to discover how to build a real online business, NSM will teach you how to do it.Â
- Niche Video TycoonÂ - This training course was created by my friend Nate Rivers. If you haven’t heard of Nate or this course, be sure toÂ check out my podcastÂ where he was my guest. I was blown away by Nate’s method for building niche sites and since learning of his course, have started to build my own video tycoon sites. I highly recommend youÂ check it out.
- Publishing for ProfitÂ - After interviewing Eric Lass on my podcast, people went crazy for his $20 ebook (it’s now more expensive, but you can get a discount code on my podcast page) on how to publish eBooks on Amazon. This is by far one of the easiest ways I’ve ever seen to earn passive income online.
- Killer Youtube Strategies – In his free eBook, video guru Gideon Shalwick shows you how to really max out your Youtube marketing. I’ve learned a lot from Gideon.
- Video Marketing University – If you’d like to really become a video marketing pro, then I’d suggest you check out Dave Kaminski’s course. You can also listen to a podcast the I did with him here.