May 07, 2006

The Six Month Millionaire

For those just joining us you can find a review of the last section here

As we delve deeper into our series on Making Money Work for us, I think It would be useful to relay a story of someone who was very, very successful with making money on the internet. That person is Alex Tew.

In August of last year, Alex Tew lay on his bed in his home in Wiltshire England.

He was faced with a financial problem; how was he going to pay his year of college that lay ahead of him? Then, he wondered, "How can I become a millionaire?" The logic behind that enormous jump between “paying for college” and “becoming a millionaire” is if he set his aim high he may be able to get back a quarter of his goal. He had no idea how much his efforts were about to return.

In only twenty minutes he thought of using the internet as his money raising medium. Being familiar with the internet, he constructed the “Million Dollar Homepage.” The premise behind the Million Dollar Homepage was selling pixels (those little dots which make up your computer screen) as space for advertisers for only a dollar each. The minimum purchase was $100 for a 10x10 pixel square to be used as an online advertisement.

Alex goes into detail of his process saying: "I wrote the title to spark the creativity and then wrote down the attributes the idea needed. It had to be simple to set up and understand. It had to have a name to capture the imagination and be something that could be set up quickly with no physical delivery required. I wrote down some keywords and then the idea came out 20 minutes later - selling pixels. So I snapped up the domain name that very night."

Alex paid a small fee for the domain name ( and a basic web-hosting service. He sold some pixels to his friends and family earning $1,000 dollars, which he spent on a press release. When the websites offer went public the demand for space on the site was astronomical. The pixels were quickly snatched up by anyone and everyone, including worldwide corporations. He was able to earn 1 million dollars in only 4 months and the rest is Internet history. Unfortunately, the million-dollar idea is also history because it is no longer original. People saw how incredibly successful he was and wanted their million too. Many of the imitators haven’t had much success with their Million Dollar Homepage spin offs. But others wanting to cash in on an idea like that should have faith in their own creative minds, take analyzed and affordable risks, and look at "failure" as a valuable teaching tool.

We’ll begin to get into the specifics about making money on the Web here. Comments and suggestions are welcome.

No comments: