How to Make Money in a Gold Rush

Ever wondered why so many people get into Internet marketing, and then end up selling systems that teach people how to get into Internet marketing?

Think about it – there’s certainly no shortage of products out there on teaching people “How To Make Money Online”.

There’s a reason for this.

I’m sure you’ve heard of the California Gold Rush, which started in 1848.


This guy named James W. Marshall found gold at Sutter’s Mill in Coloma, California.

After testing what he found and confirming that it was indeed gold, Marshall’s boss, John Sutter, got worried. He had plans for an agricultural empire and he knew what would happen to them once word got out that there was gold on his land.

Unfortunately, it was too late by then. A newspaper publisher named Samuel Brannan had heard about the rumours, and once he confirmed that they were more than just hearsay, he got busy.

No, he didn’t go pick up his shovel and get digging.

Instead, he quietly went around buying as many shovels and picks and mining supplies as he could, and then he set up a small supply store at Sutter’s Fort.

Then he took a small vial of gold and went to San Francisco, where he walked through the streets shouting, “Gold! Gold! Gold from the American River!”

The result of this? 2/3 of San Francisco’s population moved out in a big hurry, all headed to California looking for gold.

So the gold rush fever began, and it spread worldwide.

And Samuel Brannan became the first California Gold Rush millionaire, not because he struck gold, but from selling mining supplies to the hopeful prospectors.


Thus spawning the saying that the only people who got rich during the gold rush were the ones selling the shovels.

Why? Because they were doing what successful marketers do: providing the solution to a problem.

In the case of Internet marketing, if you’re just starting out trying to make money online, then you’re a prospector.

And the Internet marketers who are selling you their money-making systems are the ones selling you shovels.

Now, you need to consider the fact that there are a lot of people out there selling “shovels”. That’s the state of Internet marketing today: everyone’s got a system, and they all want to sell it. But if the market is saturated, then how can you make sure that people buy from you?

Here’s the answer: create more value for your product. Sell more than just shovels.


“So you need a shovel, sir? Yes, we have shovels, but do you have a pick, sir? You need a pick, because California dirt has hard rocks, and no shovel’s going to be able to break those. You’ll need the pick to break the rocks, sir, or you’re going to be digging for hours and getting nowhere.

Besides, if you buy a pick and a shovel from us today, we’ll throw in a gold mining pan for free….”

Yeah, you get the idea.

You need to create a higher value for your product or service that no other seller offers, especially when you’re in a crowded market.

Here are some ways to add more value:

1. Offer a bonus product.

You already saw how this works in the example I gave above.

Ever notice how most Internet marketers will give you a free eBook or free report or some free gift as part of their offer? Or if it’s not free, it’ll be at a greatly reduced price.

Giving out a bonus product is a great way to add value to your offer.

2. Offer a money back guarantee.

download (1)

A lot of marketers offer this as well – a “100% money back guarantee”. No questions asked, no time limit. If ever the customer isn’t 100% satisfied with their product, they can just get a refund.

This may not sound like a good idea, but here’s the thing: the return rate on a good, well-written product is actually very low.

Plus the return on the perceived value of your product will be far bigger than the minimal refund rate.

3. Offer BOGO.

In other words, offer people the opportunity for additional savings.

BOGO = Buy One Get One free.

It’s a great way to increase the value of what you’re offering, as well as increase sales.

This is especially a good idea for those selling physical products online, like multivitamins.

If you enjoyed this post, please consider leaving a comment or subscribing to the RSS feed to have future articles delivered to your feed reader.
You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

Leave a Reply

Powered by WordPress