I wanted to retire so I would have more time to travel while being free to serve family and others. A few years ago I decided to learn the skills needed to build my own e-commerce business without relying on others to do the thinking for me.
I wanted control of my time, creativity,
commitment, and cash flow. I was 58 years old and winding down my career as an
educational administrator. The summer of 2012 I turned 60 and “retired”
after 33 years with the same educational institution.
I watched friends go through this dramatic
transition, and listened to their dreams, worries, and
complaints. It’s tough to know exactly what your income will be, no matter how
much you consult with accountants, tax advisors, and investment professionals.
Most people I know simply decide to stay with
their current career rather than “risk” losing benefits and late career income.
We worry about Social Security, Medicare, and health care
costs. It takes real courage to make the jump and retire before reaching
federal mandated full retirement age, 66 years old.
So I invested in a good computer, and started
learning the ins-and-outs of the cyber world. I enrolled in several online
e-commerce training courses. There are hundreds of courses available
online. I was fortunate to have my oldest son Jason as my consultant to help me
choose the most useful training programs. He owns a very successful
online business training company, and has a six figure income, all from his
All together I have invested about $5000 in
my post retirement business career, including the cost of my fancy high
capacity computer. I enrolled in two training courses. I started a blog, my own
website, and began creating my own “brand” by writing about my retirement
I enjoy the creative process as well as sharing my ups
and downs along the way. My online presence began to grow. My son
told me this would happen. At first it was a bit ucomfortable to open up to such a
My Facebook friends grew to over 2800. My blog has nearly
12,000 hits. My fear grew into fun as I learned how to be careful with
my opinions and concentrate on sharing what I am learning.
I do the best I can to just be myself
but you can’t control perceptions when some of your online community knows you
only as a cyber personality. As time passes, more and more of your group have
not even met you in person. They learn to trust you because your information
has proven to be honest and useful. It’s important to never break that trust.
So the trick is figuring out how to make
money from your online “brand”. I am beginning to share how I am supplementing
my retirement income by developing my very own online business.
Here are some of the computer programs I use
to manage my online brand: Blogger, Aweber, Libsyn, Wordpress, Facebook, and
Gmail. There are other programs out there that do the similar things, but these
have proven to be comprehensive and understandable for my 60 year old brain.
I will have upcoming podcasts focused on the
way I use and synthesize these programs to make money. I thought it would be
too complex, but I discovered it actually helps my mental
I copyright my podcasts to protect my
“intellectual”/creative material. In order to gain access I invite those
interested to become part of my secure email group by signing up in the box to
the left of my blog posts.
I hope you will join my group. By doing so
you will get direct access to my podcast, soon to be updated bi-weekly. I
guarantee this will be one of the best things you do to supplement income.
I avoid online MLM (multi-level-marketing)
businesses for several reasons: 1) on average 1 of 1,000 downliners make good money, 2)
you don't own the "brand", and finally 3) MLM fill social needs
rather than making serious money. If you are building a social network it’s
great but if you want to build personal wealth you may have missed the mark.
Learning how to find your very own personal
cyber-niche is not really difficult. It's not hard to turn your own brand into
ongoing income that increases exponentially. You can own and control your own
destiny. The likelihood of success improves dramatically from 1 out of 1000 in
MLM to 1 out of 10 if you are the creator of the business and hang in there, or in other words,
your odds definately improve.