MAKE MONEY THE "PENNY HOARDER" WAY

By on Aug 21, 2014 in Make Money, Personal Finance Luminaries | 11 comments

Kyle, The Penny Hoarder – Wealth and Money Secrets 

PERSONAL FINANCE LUMINARY SERIES

Are you curious about how people make money online?

Would you like a peek into wacky ways to pick up a few bucks here and there?

You’ll get both with this in depth story about Kyle Taylor, a young man who went from nothing to running a successful online business, The Penny Hoarder.

Learn about how this 4 year old blog, started by an ambitious 20-something year old, has turned into one of the top websites online. Find out about Kyle, the man behind this successful site and learn the secrets to his astounding achievements.  

For more success stories and inspiration, with a money and investing kick, check out all of our Personal Finance Luminaries Series.

.kyle_penny hoarder_pm 

According to Kyle’s bio, he is a guy who started his entrepreneurial ways while a kid in his living room,

” Instead of playing with “Power Rangers” like the rest of my friends, I used play time to try and convince my family members to invest in my conglomerate of make-believe banks and equity markets that I was running in the living room.”

I’m not certain how much those activities paid off for Kyle, but his subsequent venture led to real money for his family:

“When I was 15, I started clipping coupons to help my mom pay the grocery bill. I joined a few coupon trading groups and started vigorously looking for new ways to cut costs. Our grocery bill quickly fell until it was under $20 a week.”

The Penny Hoarder is filled with contests, offers, coupons, and money making strategies. 

In this article, you’ll get a taste of some of the Penny Hoarder ways to make extra cash. Next, you’ll get a “behind the scenes” look at Kyle and The Penny Hoarder business.

Wacky Ways to Increase Your Cash Flow

Although many of Kyle’s cash creating schemes are “out of the box” you are certain to find something that will work for you. Why not try out one or two money making ideas to boost your bottom line? 

Here are a sample of money making ideas from The Penny Hoarder:

  1. Can you write? Do you have something to say? Find out how one person made $2,000 publishing an ebook.
  2. Make money playing games-This one is for the laziest of you out there. The Penny Hoarder listed quite a few ideas to recoup your wasted hours playing games. Give one or two a try and let me know how they work out.
  3. Are you a gambler? What about roulette? Find out how one man’s roulette strategy yielded him $80,000.

Kyle, Penny Hoarder Superstar Businessman

The Penny Hoarder Statistics:

  • The Penny Hoarder has 3,000,000 readers per month.
  • Qunatcast ranked his The Penny Hoarder as one of the top 1,000 websites, in terms of traffic.
  • His blog receives 1,200 new email subscribers per day.

1. What led you to create “The Penny Hoarder” Website?

 Kyle-After high school, I went to the University of South Florida. I majored in political science and was a true politics junky. During my college years, I regularly took breaks to travel and work on political campaigns. In spite of the deplorable pay, I continued this pattern for six years. I’d go to school for a while, and then take time off to work for a political candidate.

 

Since campaign work pays poorly, I was continually scheming ways to make extra cash.

One of my favorite jobs was as an “alcohol monitor”. At age 21, I went to bars, gas stations, and anywhere they sold alcohol and bought beer. My job was to find out whether the business carded me.

The cool part about this job was that I was paid to buy the alcohol and I got to keep it. You can imagine how popular that made me with my college friends.

Next, I started writing about my “money making experiences”. And for the past four years, I’ve continued to write about ways that I made money. Over time, the blog has expanded to include other people’s money making experiences too.

2. Tell us about your background so we can understand can get a grasp of what makes you tick?

I’ve lived in both Ohio and Indiana growing up. My parents were divorced and the three kids lived with my mom. She had to work 3 jobs just to make ends meet.

After mom came home from her first job, she would pile us kids in the car as she went from business to business and worked as a mystery shopper. I planned the routes for her to maximize our time and minimize the driving.

3. How much does mystery shopping pay?

Kyle-It doesn’t pay too much, $10-$25 per store is average. But the range can go from $5 on up to $100. That’s why we bundled the trips together and planned the route, in order to make as much money per trip as possible.

4. Do you have more than one blog?

Kyle-I have a few other blogs, although the Penny Hoarder occupies most of my time. I hired a manager to helps me with my other websites. Justin from Money is the Root manages my smaller sites.

5. How would you characterize your readers?

Kyle-My readers fall into two broad categories. The first group are looking for tips to stretch their budget. These people want viable strategies to make more money.

The second group of people appreciate the entertainment value of the site. There is no shortage of wild and wacky ways to make money on The Penny Hoarder.

One of the most incredible money making stories was about a guy who sold whale vomit for $60,000!

If you’re craving a bit of money entertainment, you’ll get it on The Penny Hoarder.

6. What is your business structure?

Kyle-I have 2 full time editors and 4 part time writers. It took me a long time to get my staff in line, and I went through quite a few people, before I found my current staff. It’s great to have quality people I can count on now, but there’s definitely a learning curve when running a business.

I also pay $75 per story if someone submits a money making article and we publish it on the site.

7. How is the current business different from your initial dreams and ideas?

Kyle-The blog started as a hobby. I was always interested in ways to make money, but I never expected the site to expand so rapidly. During the first three years the blog grew consistently. This past year, the Penny Hoarder’s growth has exploded.

In fact, I haven’t even finished my college degree yet. The Penny Hoarder turned into a real viable business.

8. How did you learn the business aspects?

Kyle-I learned mainly through trial and error. I’ve had plenty of challenges and failures.

Actually, I really like the business part of the blog, but it’s been a tough learning curve with plenty of bad experiences along the way. Now I’ve got a good website developer and staff, I’m much more relaxed.

One of my toughest times when I first started the blog. I was very poor and behind on my rent. I used to sneak into hotels to snare a free breakfast.

I also spent a lot of money on advertising, with little pay back. I put 50 percent of my revenue into marketing and advertising. I used Facebook ads, adwords, bumper stickers and hanging flyers at colleges. And most of the ideas failed.

I’ve learned from those early failures and found that TabulaCreative and Outbrain are good advertising sources.

9.Where else do you spend money to build your business?

My major business expenses are infrastructure, staff, web hosting, and public relations. I’m spending money to make the site look more professional. Since we have so many visitors, webhosting is in the 4 figures every month. As with any business, public relations and marketing are extremely important.

10. Now the question the readers are wondering about; how do you make money? 

I spend a lot of time developing associations with companies to create advertising relationships. I work with banks such as GE Capital and American Express.

About a year ago, I was banned from Adsense. Initially, I thought my business was finished. They banned me while owing me a chunk of advertising revenue and I was crushed.

But, as with many setbacks, this motivated me to create more stable partnerships with advertisers and left me with more control over my business.

I also made money from some affiliate advertisements, but only with those companies which I trust

11. What are your future plans?

I’m developing a new site which will be similar to rewards sites, but better. The new site will reward readers for performing certain tasks and achieving goals. The objectives will be super easy to attain. 

Stay tuned!    

12. During a typical day, how do you spend your time?

Since I work at home, I create structure with a 9 to 5 work day. I usually take Friday’s off and find that Sunday afternoons are my most productive time to work.

I start most days with email and spend a few hours handling that. The rest of the day is consumed with conference calls with advertisers and my site editors. Keeping in touch with advertisers is very important.

Then there are the interviews, such as this one.

13. What are your biggest motivators and inspiration? 

Kyle-I’m motivated by trying to attain wealth. My mom struggled a lot growing up and I know what it’s like to be poor. I’m very ambitious and want to build a blogging empire. I’m also a perfectionist and self-motivated.

I never feel satisfied, which is both a blessing and a curse.

14. How do you invest your money?

Kyle-Of course I max out my IRA.

Then I have a “fun” investment account where I trade stocks.

Most of my serious investments are in low cost Vanguard index mutual funds.

As an entrepreneur, I also invest my money in my current and new business(es).

15. Have you had debt?

Kyle-Of course, when I was younger, I was stupid with my money. I had student loan debt. While in college I had credit card debt. Like many college students, I overspent.

16. How did you get rid of the debt?

Kyle-the old fashioined way; living within my means.

I also worked to make more money. It’s easier to get rid of debt when you’re making more money. 

We have an income crisis in this country. People work so hard, for so little money. The minimum wage is hardly a livable wage. And although it’s important to live within your means, it’s equally important to work towards increasing your income.

This is my formula: Concentrate 50% on cutting back spending and 50% on increasing your income.

But you want to watch out for cutting back too much. Because, if you cut back too much, you’ll feel deprived and end up overspending. It’s kind of like drastic dieting.

If you withhold food too much, you end up binge eating.

You need to have cheat days where it’s okay to spend a bit.

 17. What are your best ideas to make extra money?

Kyle-Let’s divide my answer into two parts, short and long term.

In the short term, an easy way to make extra money is mystery shopping, anybody can do it.

Long term starting a blog is a great way to make some side cash. Anyone can start one on a budget. For Mommy bloggers there are sponsorships. For example, Clorox and Charmin will pay to you to review their products.

I suggest doing it with a partner, because the writing can become a burden for one person.

With blogging, start small-cheap hosting, free email list.

18. What is your best advice for others?

You must be hungry and super ambitious.

A year ago, I lost adsense and $1,000’s of money. It forced me to go out and get advertisers on my own. Look at adversity in the face.

19. What’s your final secret to success?

Kyle-Networking. Avoid Shyness. Attend conferences and develop relationships with likeminded people. It helps when building an online business to have people to talk to.

Google chat or Skype is a great way to connect with others.

Conferences-Google chat

For more success stories and inspiration, with a money and investing kick, check out all of our Personal Finance Luminaries Series.

How do you earned extra money? List your tips and suggestions in the comments section.

 A version of this article was previously published.

    11 Comments

  1. As a teacher, I have a few opportunities to earn extra money. I can cover classes during my conference period. I can make an extra $1,000 every month. I can teach an auxiliary class which is teaching another class. I did that one year ago. Summer school was also an option. These were common prior to the recession. There are after school programs too.

    krantcents

    June 25, 2012

  2. My biggest side money maker right now is my blog at a whole $.03 so far! I have in the past mowed lawns and took care of pet sitting though.

    Lance@MoneyLife&More

    June 25, 2012

  3. @Krantcents-Those are very nice options for some side cash.
    @Lance-Hang in there, making money from a blog is a long term option. I think lawn mowing is great money per hour.
    @Miss T-Your site is great!!! Lots of variety.

    Barb

    June 26, 2012

  4. I enjoy the penny hoarder too! Crazy ideas for making money. Making money blogging is slow go, but I’m slowly seeing income. Most of my online income has come through staff writing and working for random SEO companies.

    Brent Pittman

    June 26, 2012

  5. Back in “the day” (I’m so old school….) I would help a guy deliver papers at 3:30 AM. I had a job during the day, so I asked myself the question “what would you do during the hours you’re sleeping?” You haven’t viewed the world until you’ve found out a) that nights without cloud cover are FREEZING in January in the midwest, and b) where every dog in every neighborhood on your route lives and how to avoid them.

    AverageJoe

    June 26, 2012

  6. @Brent-What do you do for the SEO companies?
    @Joe-Delivering papers is pretty good money! The down side, as you mentioned, is getting up in the freezing weather.

    Barb

    June 26, 2012

  7. I find people are either a saver or a spender. To some extent they can come over to the other side but not completely. Organized, inquisitive people are normally better with all facets of money.

    Dave

    June 26, 2012

  8. What are the great money making tips!!! I am already student of online job. So, I think penny hoarder is so important to me. Thanks a lot for your article.

    Jakobe Wayne

    June 27, 2012

  9. It’s very unusual to know that when you’re a kid Kyle, you preferred to play, time to try and convince your family members instead playing with computer games! My seven year old daughter loves to play with her tablet BUT she is a very frugal type of kiddo and I’m happy with it.

    Kate @ Money Propeller

    August 25, 2014

  10. Hi Kate, Although not particularly “business” oriented, our daughter is conservative with her money. As she grows into adulthood, I’m confident she’s not going to squander her financial resources.

    Kate, kids at 7 are so fun to watch. You can really see their personalities evolve.

    Barbara Friedberg

    August 25, 2014

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