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Thursday, April 28, 2011

You Could Make $8,250 Sipping Chocolate Latte with Extra Cream at Starbucks in a Little-Known Market No One Told You About – Until Now!

Reprinted by permission

You Could Make $8,250 Sipping Chocolate Latte with Extra Cream at Starbucks in a
Little-Known Market No One Told You About – Until Now!

6:22 AM

Dear Entrepreneur:
This is going to surprise you.
First of all, I’m confident NOBODY has ever told this money making opportunity.

Oh sure….you’ve probably heard fourth hand information from an in-law, uncle or co-worker.
But I’ll show you this baby in all its glory.

And YES….I’ve made money with this opportunity.

Let’s get to it……

The opportunity is coffee options.

Hang on….

I’m not offering investment advice.

I’m simply offering a basic understanding of coffee futures and options trading. 

My column this week is NOT intended to provide specific financial or investment advice for you. 

On top of that, you should not act (or rely) on the information in this issue of without seeking the advice of a qualified financial adviser or futures broker.  They can discuss your specific circumstances and objectives. 

Great… now that I’ve managed to scare you senseless… let’s move on.

There are Risks When Trading Coffee Futures and Options

In deciding whether or not you want to become involved in any type of futures trading you should be aware you could both gain and lose large amounts of money. 

In other words, you risk losing money because………

(a) You could lose the margin funds you deposit with the futures broker to establish or maintain a futures position 

(b) If the market moves against your position, you may be required to deposit with the futures broker further monies as margin in order to maintain your position. If you fail to provide those additional funds within the required time your position may be liquidated. You will be liable for any shortfall in your account resulting from the liquidation.

(c) You could lose all monies deposited with the futures broker, and in addition be required to pay the futures broker further funds representing losses and other fees on your open and closed positions.

(d) Under certain conditions, it could become difficult or impossible for you to liquidate or close a position (this can happen when there is significant change in prices over a short period).

(e) The placing of contingent orders (such as a "stop-loss" order) may not always limit your losses to the amounts that you may want. Market conditions may make it impossible to execute such orders.

(f) The high degree of leverage obtainable in futures trading because of small margin requirements can work against you as well as for you. The use of leverage can lead to large losses as well as large gains.

(g) Futures and options trading are not appropriate for everyone. There is a substantial risk of loss associated with trading futures and options on futures. Only risk capital should be used.

(h) No representation is being made that futures and options on futures trading is appropriate for everyone. It should not be viewed as an alternative, replacement or supplemental form of income.

You should discuss these matters with a commodity broker prior to commencing any trading.

A Trader’s View of This Market…

A futures contract is an agreement (obligation) to buy or sell a given quantity of a particular asset at a specified future date at a prearranged price. 

Futures contracts have standard delivery dates, trading units, terms, and conditions. They can be based on any one of a number of underlying assets. 

There are futures contracts available in individual shares and stock market indices, bonds, interest rates, coffee, sugar, orange juice, and other agricultural commodities. 

You can even trade catastrophe futures (they have to do with insurance) at CME!

Futures contracts are usually traded on government-regulated exchanges like the Chicago Board of Trade (the largest futures exchange), ICE, and the New York Mercantile Exchange.

There are also commodity and currency futures exchanges in most industrialized countries.
You’ll find futures prices on most of the top financial websites and business newspaper websites.

The total number of contracts traded on the CME in 2010 was valued at more than $645 trillion!
You heard right…..645 TRILLION.  That’s a lot of lattes!

Now…as I said….You can "open" a futures position by either buying or selling a contract.
You can "close" a futures position by doing the exact opposite either selling or buying the same contract. 

If you believe the price of the underlying asset will rise, you would buy a futures position. This is referred to as being "long." 

When you buy a futures contract and hold it to expiration, you would be required to take delivery of the underlying asset, or equivalent cash value, at a prearranged price and by a certain date.

Don't worry though…..only a small percentage of futures contracts are held to expiration. 

Most of the money in this market is made during the life of a contract.

If you believe the price of the underlying asset will fall, you would sell a futures position. This is referred to as being "short." 

When you sell a futures contract and it is held to expiration, you would be required to deliver the underlying asset, or equivalent cash value, at a prearranged price and by a certain date. 

Beginning traders often have difficulty grasping the concept of selling something they don't own. What you are doing is simply selling something on paper - via the contract. 

There is a risk of substantial losses when trading any kind of futures contract. 

How to Reduce Risk with Options

One way to reduce risk is by using options.

You won’t eliminate risk…but you’ll greatly reduce it.

I can’t get into all the specifics of option trading in this week's issue but it wouldn't hurt for you to do some research on the topic.

But know this…….when you buy an option your risk is defined – upfront.

For example, if you buy an option for $500 that is the most you can lose.  

Your downside risk is limited to the “premium” or the price you pay for the option.

When I started trading this simple lesson was worth a fortune to me!

How to Make $10,000 While Sipping Chocolate Lattes at Starbucks

There is thousands of trading systems, techniques, and software programs on the market today.
Most of them are designed to help you make money in futures market. 

Obviously, some programs and techniques are better than others.

But George Angel taught me an option strategy many years ago which I still use to this day.
In fact, when I learned this simple technique I was so excited I couldn’t sleep.

Important Point: Unlike real estate, coins, brick-and-mortar businesses, and hundreds of other investments, the futures and options market is immediate. These is especially true for markets with large volume and open interest (open contracts). The worldwide futures market is huge. When you place an order to buy or sell, it's filled almost instantly! No lawyers, accountants, appraisers, government workers, or employees are required.

So here we go…..

Coffee options are contracts in which the underlying asset is a coffee futures contract. 

The holder of a coffee option possesses the right (but not the obligation) to assume a long position (in the case of a call option) or a short position (in the case of a put option) in the underlying coffee futures at the strike price. 

This right will cease to exist when the option expires after market close on expiration date.
If this doesn’t make sense….my advice is to STOP. Take some time to research and study the fundamentals of coffee options so all of this makes sense.

The Options Guide is a good place to start.

Here’s a hypothetical example….

Okay… let’s say the March Coffee futures contract is trading at $235 (per pound). A coffee futures contract is 37,500 lbs.  The total value of a coffee futures contract is approximately $88,125 ($2.35 x 37,500 lbs).

Great….now we’ll sell or “write” a put option on the March coffee futures contract.

This is also a nice strategy because coffee prices do not tend to fall coming into March and April.

The basic idea behind selling or “writing” a put option on a coffee contract is to profit if prices remain steady or increase. If coffee prices fall you would lose money by selling or “writing” a coffee put option.

We’ll sell one March coffee 220 put at the market. 

220 is the strike price. It means $2.20.

Let’s say the premium or cost of this option is 11 which mean 11 cents. The value of this particular option would be 11 x 37,500 or $4125.

If you sold this coffee option $4125 would be deposited into your account immediately! If you sold two options $8250 would be deposited into your account instantly.

Now…if the price of coffee remains under $2.35 or goes higher within the next 5 weeks when the option contract hypothetically expires, the full premium is yours.

You see….option contracts have a time element to them. There will always be an expiration date.

The trick is to write options as close to expiration as possible so the time element works in YOUR favor. 

In reality most options expire without being exercised, which makes selling or “writing” options a profitable opportunity.

There you have it!

A simple strategy for selling coffee options while sipping chocolate lattes with extra cream at Starbucks.

Have fun and play nice!

Your humble host,

Marc Charles

(Ed Note:  Marc Charles is referred to as "The King of Business Opportunities" ....and for good reason. He should be known as "The King of Legitimate Business Opportunities"...because he's launched, bought, sold reviewed and advised on hundreds of businesses and money making opportunities. He understands legitimate opportunities. Marc has agreed supply League of Power members with crucial updates regarding legitimate business and money making opportunities.)

***** Action Strategy *****

Grab a $20,000 Paper Trading Futures Account Absolutely FREE – here

You can paper trade futures without risking a dime!

Test my coffee option formula or strategy to see if it works in the real world.

You can find a commodity future quotes everywhere – just Google it.

Select coffee option you want to trade, obtain a current market price (quote) and start trading “on paper”. 

Commodity future and option quotes are displayed with an opening price, high, low, settle, or closing price.

Selling or “writing” options is what savvy, street smart commodity traders use to make money with very little downside risk.

******** Valuable Resources ***********

Top World Commodity Futures Exchanges

Recommended Books
Trade Your Way to Financial Freedom, by Van K. Tharp
Market Wizards: Interviews with Top Traders, by Jack Schwager
The New Market Wizards, by Jack Schwager
Reminiscences of a Stock Operator, by Edwin Lefevre
Winning in the Futures Markets, by George Angell
Elliott Wave Principle by Robert Prechter Jr
All About Futures, by Russell Wasendorf Sr.
The Complete Turtle Trader: The Legend, the Lessons, the Results by Michael Covel

A Trader's First Book on Commodities: An Introduction to the World's Fastest Growing Market by Carley Garner

Commodity Brokerages

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

How to Make $50,000 Over the Next 12 Months as a Freelance Writer by Marc Charles

How to Make $50,000 Over the Next 12 Months as a Freelance Writer Using a “Time Tested” Renegade Tactic

7:15 AM

Dear Entrepreneur:

You can make money by writing a best-selling novel, movie script, travel book or even a Broadway play.

These are legitimate writing opportunities.

But most of us we would be happy making an extra $50,000 this year as a renegade freelance “hack”…..writing about stuff that interests us.

Today I’ll show you how to make money as a freelance writer in hundreds, and in some cases thousands of markets. 

On top of that…I’ve give you a simple step-by-step formula for landing paid writing projects.

But first…the truth about my freelance writing experience.

I don’t think anyone had less training or experience than I did when I started out as a freelance writer.

I’m serious!

My first freelance gig was for a publisher looking for people to write website reviews. 

That’s right……website reviews for Pete’s sake!

My first deal was for a publisher called IDG Books Worldwide Inc. After reading my cover letter they asked for writing samples and references for my published work.

The bad news was I didn’t have any “writing samples” and I certainly didn’t have any so-called “published” work. 

So here’s what I did.... 

Coming up with writing samples was easy, because the publisher told me he was looking for website reviews with an “edge.”

I asked myself, “How hard can it be to write a website review with an “edge”?

The publisher sent me a link to their published website reviews and said, “This is what I’m looking for.”

Rule Number One: Offer to write exactly what the publisher needs.

I studied hundreds of this first publisher’s website reviews and counted every word in each review. 

Then I studied the writer’s “voice and attitude.” 

By the time I was done, I understood exactly what the publisher needed.
I wrote twenty website reviews without stopping using the publisher’s published content as a guide.

Rule Number Two: Use the publisher‘s content as a guide for landing projects

I submitted my website reviews and hoped to God the publisher didn’t ask for more samples or references – and he didn’t!

After six days the publisher sent me an email claiming he loved my reviews. He sent me a contract via FedEx and my first paid writing gig was off and running!

But get this….. I contacted more than fifty publishers before I got this gig.

So if you’re not persistent then freelance writing is NOT for you!

Rule Number Three: There are millions of publishers in the world today. Most of them need relevant content

And this ties into my step-by-step formula for landing paid writing projects.

If you want to land a freelance writing project it’s good to have focused persistence.

Focus on projects in the markets you most enjoy. Writing about stuff you know something about is always easier than making stuff up.

My Step-by-Step Formula for Landing Paid Writing Projects

Forget about writing free articles in order to get your feet wet. 

There are dozens of “content farms” on the Internet today seeking free articles.  In fact, article writing with a view to search engine optimization is a monster market.

But most of the people and publishers seeking free articles (with the promise of massive exposure) are a joke. I know from personal experience.

A “content farm” typically offers to compensate freelance writers with worldwide exposure. 

The dirty secret is content farms typically reject most of the articles they receive. 

What’s more, when content farms actually shell out some money it’s usually peanuts.

You’re better off going to direct to publishers.

Now don’t get me wrong……..

Sometimes we’ll need to be willing to accept smaller projects and pay days.
When I started out writing my Yahoo! Unplugged project (and IDG Books Worldwide, Inc) I was only paid ten cents a word!


But, I knew IDG Books Worldwide was a big company (they published the Dummie titles). They also had a history of working with freelance writers and actually paying them (A Prospects)….so I knew there were a boatload of opportunities.

And so…sometimes a little money is better than no money if there are more opportunities down the road….

Anyway…..the first priority is to land a paid writing assignment.

1.     Identify YOUR market
This shouldn’t be hard. What are you into? What did you read about today? Do you like the financial markets, horse breeding, online poker, natural health, Internet marketing, real estate, or Major League baseball?
Focus on the stuff you’re passionate about.
If you write about stuff without any passion you can kiss your freelance projects goodbye. Readers will know if you don’t care!
My first paid gig was writing website reviews! I thought the web was the coolest thing in the world and I was really excited about it. Although I had many projects and businesses at the time the Internet captured my heart and soul.

2.     Identify publishers (and writing projects) in YOUR market.
This is easy.
The Internet makes research super simple.
There are thousands of publishers and paid writing assignment online (I’ve listed some great ones in the Valuable Resources section).
You can search billions of documents, postings and listings instantly with Google.
For example, let’s say you’re looking for publishers in the animals or pets market. Okay….enter the words “animal pet publication” or “publisher pets animals.”
There were millions of search results under these terms on Google.
Writer’s Market  lists more than 8,200 markets and publishers who need writers!

3.     Submit a proposal and add YOUR personality to it. Focus on the publisher’s audience!
It’s easy to write cover letters and proposals. But most cover letters are useless. 

I’m serious. 

Would you talk to a friend or business acquaintance the way you write cover letters? If so, that’s why your cover letters do not inspire people to take action.
Look….when you write a letter let the cat out of the box! Let YOUR personality shine.

You’ll be competing for writing projects with people who have more experience, savvy, and ability then you do. But who cares? 

The BEST way to get someone’s attention …even with a proposal is to let your personality shine.  The trick is to focus on the publisher’s audience and reader – not on how much you’re going to get paid. 

The biggest obstacle in securing freelance writing projects can be overcome by focusing on the PUBLISHER’S reader. Make sure you know who the publisher’s reader is BEFORE you submit a proposal.

Don’t worry. Sometimes this only takes a few minutes. Read the publisher’s content!

Write like you talk in real life. You’re not an English teacher. 

4. Submit work within the publisher’s guidelines – and BEFORE the deadline! 

Every publication has submission guidelines.

In most cases, the submission guidelines are easy to follow.

When you land a writing project, deliver it before the deadline

In more than 18 years as a freelance writer I’ve only missed two deadlines.
If you can follow submission guidelines and deliver projects on time you’ll soon have more work than you can handle. 

A publisher once told me I was NOT the most proficient writer on their team (thanks a lot!).

But he said I was the “go to guy” because I always delivered RELEVANT content on time! 

You want to be the “go to” guy or gal.

5. Always be looking for writing projects, even when your hands are full!

I’ve lived this principle for more than two decades in businesses.
I’m always looking for the next project ...or opportunity…even if my hands are full.

Ask any freelance writer who’s making money and 90% will tell you they’re always on the lookout for new writing projects.
That’s it! 

It’s that simple! 

Identify the markets which turn you on, submit proposals with a little 

personality, follow the publisher’s submission guidelines, deliver stuff on time and always be on the lookout for new projects.

Your Humble Host,

Marc Charles

(Ed Note:  Marc Charles is referred to as "The King of Business Opportunities" ....and for good reason. He should be known as "The King of Legitimate Business Opportunities"...because he's launched, bought, sold reviewed and advised on hundreds of businesses and money making opportunities. He understands legitimate opportunities. Marc has agreed supply League of Power members with crucial updates regarding legitimate business and money making opportunities.)
*** Action Strategy ***

You’ve got everything you need to land your first paid writing project!
Now it’s up to you to make it happen. 

Start by simply identifying the markets you would enjoy writing about. 

Keep in mind a lot of publishers are hungry for personal and lively “reviews” – especially travel, entertainment, and restaurant reviews. 

Scour the resources in the Valuable Resources section and you’ll begin to see how huge the market is for freelance writers.

You’ll have a blast!

Have fun and play nice.

**********Valuable Resources *********

Writer’s Weekly (outstanding freelance writing newsletter)
Media Bistro (Freelance marketplace for writing projects)
Dan Poynter (a true freelance writing guru ... with a massive contact database)
CraigsList Writing Gigs (Hundreds of freelance opportunities are posted every day)
Writer’s Market 2011 (you can grab used editions at AbeBooks)
Know More Media (blog networks, columns, and more)
Gebbie Press: 2011 The All-in-One Media Directory (8,200 newspaper editors, 1000+ magazine editors, TV and radio stations, and much more)
WritersNet (hundreds of publishers looking for writers)
BlogIt (Get paid to blog!)
Editor and Publisher (a fantastic resource ... and another great source of contacts)
Newsletter Access (more than 9,000 email newsletter publishers looking for content)

AWAI’s Accelerated Program for Six-Figure Copywriting (excellent copywriting program)

Content Farms

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Low Cost Funeral Chain Enters Portland Market

You laugh.......

But I wrote about this business in it's a reality:


Marc Charles

Saturday, April 2, 2011

How to Build a Small Digital Vending Empire in 18 Months or Less with New Twist to an “Old” Business by Marc Charles

 Reprinted by permission

How to Build a Small Digital Vending Empire in 18 Months or Less with New Twist to an “Old” Business

Dear Entrepreneur:

I drove around Las Vegas recently with an entrepreneur who was hell bent on building a vending route cash cow.

I witnessed a twist to this old world business. 

He also proved me wrong when I scoffed at the numbers he was throwing around. It cost me an expensive dinner and drinks at Michael Mina’s in the new City Center.

Anyway, if you’re anything like me….the thought of running around town filling vending machines with candy, potato chips, and assorted personal items is NOT my idea of a great business.

But the idea of automated digital vending machines and kiosks is a different story.

Here’s the deal……

There are more than 42 million vending machines worldwide, representing sales in excess of $100 billion, according to industry experts.

Cashless digital machines account for about $32 billion of this mega-trend ... and there’s no end in sight.

In Japan, digital vending is huge! 

According to the Japan Vending Manufacturers Association, there are more than 6 million vending machines in Japan – and many of them are fully digital.

What Makes Digital Vending Different?

Old world vending machines are the ones offering things like candy, soda, snacks, cheap toys, and toiletries. Make no mistake about it – this is still a monster market!

But digital vending machines on the other hand, offer digital products like instant prints from your digital camera, music, movies, VOIP, gaming, gambling and phone charging ... to name a few.
Digital vending save time, money, resources and maintenance! They require less maintenance, physical inventory and manpower to manage.

On top of that, digital vending has skyrocketed into the 21st century. 

Get this….

You can buy digital machines today with “smart chips” which automatically send you an e-mail, text message, or other signal to inform you when the supply of a particular product is low or if the machine is screwed up. 

My approach to the vending business won’t appeal to everyone. 

My strategy calls for owning your digital vending equipment and concentrate on high demand digital products or which require almost no space.

You see……

Most entrepreneurs who enter the vending business do one of three things:

1)    Buy into a franchise and/or lease equipment
2)    Buy a vending route from another entrepreneur and/or work off a profit share
3)    Work for a vending route owner and split profits

I think the best way to approach this business is by securing the best locations and then purchase a digital machine to match the location.

More on this in a second….

The vending products most appealing to me are:
  • video entertainment (touch-screen games and video poker)
  • phone cards
  • Internet VoIP
  • massage chairs
  • digital ID photo booths
  • ATM machines
  • Breathalyzers
  • gaming and gambling
  • music and movie downloads
  • iPod and iPod nano (preloaded with music)
  • TracFone
  • disposable Motorola RAZRs
  • insurance
  • medical information
I realize most start-up entrepreneurs can’t afford to buy vending machines outright. 

If that’s your situation - don’t worry. There’s an entire industry built around financing vending machines for would be entrepreneurs like you.

Vending financing is another side of this business you might consider. 

You could buy the digital vending machines and sell them (via financing) to would be entrepreneurs. You could also provide consulting services and customized machine placement plans.

But I still think the best way to build a digital vending empire is to start small, own your equipment, and focus on high demand products.

Vending’s Dirty Little Secret

Hold your horses. Get your mind off the vending machine for a second and start thinking about buying or leasing locations.

Location is the key to success in this business.

Once a location is secured (I’ll show you how) you could purchase and place digital vending machines for it.

Then repeat the formula by purchasing additional machines and placing them in strategic locations.

Obviously, securing prime locations can be difficult…as my young start up friend found out.
But we’re entrepreneurs……we’re supposed to think on our feet and get things done!

One way to secure prime locations (and machines) is to buy them from entrepreneurs who want to get out of the business.

You could also negotiate for prime locations by offering owners a percentage of your sales. Believe me….people are receptive to residual income proposals. But don’t paint a pretty picture. Show property owners the ugly downside and underbelly of the business and this opportunity. 

Smart property owners will sell themselves, and most will be responsive to your offer.

In my opinion and research the 10 best digital vending locations are:

Train stations
Cruise ship ports (and onboard)
Popular nightclubs
Mega-malls with indoor entertainment
Large college campuses
Popular restaurants
Highway rest areas
Shopping centers and food stores
Hotels, resorts and casinos

Placing vending machines in key locations with a constant flow of traffic is a science. 

But digital vending machines typically require much less traffic to be profitable. 

On top of that, digital vending machines often receive more activity then the old world machines partly because they’re fun.

Companies around the world manufacture digital vending machines. I’ve listed some manufactures in the valuable resources section.

Don’t overlook digital vending machine manufacturers in countries such as China, Taiwan, the Philippines, and Viet Nam. 

In most cases, you’ll pay much less from manufacturers in these countries than you will from U.S. manufacturers. 

Granted, shipping may be an issue. But you’ll often find overseas companies will bend over backward to help a U.S.-based company or entrepreneur.

You could also partner with existing digital vending entrepreneurs in exchange for a percentage of the profits. By “partnering,” I mean you would oversee a section of a city or region for them to make sure everything is running properly.  (And remember, it’s easy to do that with the new machines that have smart chips installed.) 

Your Humble Host,

Marc Charles

(Ed Note:  Marc Charles is referred to as "The King of Business Opportunities" ....and for good reason. He should be known as "The King of Legitimate Business Opportunities"...because he's launched, bought, sold reviewed and advised on hundreds of businesses and money making opportunities. He understands legitimate opportunities. Marc has agreed supply League of Power members with crucial updates regarding legitimate business and money making opportunities.)

***Action Strategy***

My digital vending strategy is perfect for making money in this business.

Focus on a location first. Then buy (or finance) digital vending machines one at a time.

Learn everything you can about prime locations. 

Insider Tip: Large vending companies like Canteen or ARAMARK often sell or lease space in high-traffic locations.

You can also use a digital vending placement service (I’ve listed a few of them below.)

Your primary objective is to purchase and place one digital vending machine and make it profitable. 

Then duplicate the formula by purchasing and placing additional machines.

In 18 months (or less) you should nice venture generating income. 

On average a digital vending machine in a medium traffic area can generate around $4,000 per month net. If you have 6 machines placed in strategic locations it could mean $24,000 per month!

According to a recent article in the Christian Science Monitor Mall retailers generate about $300 per square foot on average.  Airport retailers average about $1,000 per square foot. Automated digital machines, by contrast, can earn between $2,000 and $8,000 a square foot or $4,000 and $30,000 per square foot in airports.
Your venture could be attractive to other entrepreneurs should you decide to sell too.

********Valuable Resources *********

Vending Location Services:

Trade Publications: