Gelang Patah: Revisited

Did you know that I used to stay in an obscure, blind spot of Malaysia at one point in time? The place is called Gelang Patah. My mother, sister and I used to joke about Gelang Patah being ‘Nowhere Land‘, just like the one in the cartoon show “Courage the Cowardly Dog”.

Today, Gelang Patah is rapidly growing in development and a lot of people – Malaysians and Singaporeans alike – can be seen using this small town as a means of transiting via the Second (Tuas) Causeway Link.

Road to Gelang Patah

I haven’t been here for more than a year, almost two in fact. The roads to Gelang Patah are long and winding, with nothing but forest on the left and right. It’s like one of those interstate rides on the North-South Express Highway.

Nowhere Land

Two reasons brought me back to Gelang Patah this time. To settle my car loan in full… and to get a haircut. 🙂

I first arrived at this little, obscure town in the last quarter of Year 2003. My family moved out of Petaling Jaya earlier, and after a lot had happened, I continued my last days of high school in SMK Gelang Patah as a substitute student. When I came back here this time, there was more traffic than usual. And I suspect it will be a big town in years to come, possibly sooner than I think.

My mom stayed here for most of the time until we all moved out to town area in early 2006, whereas both my sister and I were here on and off. I got my first and last full time job in PJ in 2004 and then started my Internet Business from here in 2005. When we moved out of this place eventually, the small, little town was going through signs of development since Gelang Patah is strategically near Tuas, the second Causeway Link to Singapore.

Peaceful Residence

Even though I didn’t grow up here, nor did I spend years growing up in Gelang Patah, it sure is a ride down Memory Lane. I was greeted by development and bittersweet memories when I came back here. A lot of things have changed since.

The Globe

When I was here, Internet connection was dreadful. The one and only Cyber Cafe I knew was 10 minutes walk from home and it was old, drabby and mouldy… and so 56k. That time, the entire Nusa Perintis is fully monopolized by TIME NET, and you know what that means? Yep… Dial-up Internet connection!

Yet that was how I did my business online back in the early days. Looking back, wow… I actually paid RM700 – 900 a month for snail paced Internet access!

Today, they have this uber awesome Cyber Cafe right here in this small town.

Hi-Tech Cyber Cafe

When I entered the cafe, a lot of people were playing DoTA and a host of ‘dance dance’ games like crazy. And there’s even my favorite Company of Heroes too! I’m never a fan of DoTA but damn… I came and go two years too early. 😉 I also reckon that Broadband connection may have reached this town already.

Right outside the Cyber Cafe, I saw this.

Ferris Wheel

Now they’re planning to build a mini amusement park here too? Amazing! I must be missing a lot. I sure am getting envious! 😉

New Building - Pusat Pemulihan dalam Komuniti

They’ve built this new Community Center right in front of the football field too. Notice that there are no skyscrappers around? Yet some things still remain the same.

The Shops

The Residential Area

This was the backalley ‘short cut’ we always used to get to the Grocery Store to buy our goods and return home. Again, notice that there are no skyscrappers around? 🙂 This is still a relatively peaceful place to be in.

The Backalley

Oh, and we used to stay in that house too. 🙂 Can you imagine? Rent was only RM480 a month! Great deal for a small double storey house. Even so, money was tight back then and paying up for rent in time was a trouble too.

The Old House

Even though the house was small in size, Mom and I kept good care of the house and we cleaned it very often to maintain a homely environment. It’s amazing in many ways though: this house has seen the best in me when I studied hard for my exams like never before (in spite of the 3-month abscence handicap)… and this is also where I made my first dollar online. 🙂

SMK Gelang Patah

I would have finished my schooling in SMK Damansara Jaya if not for my parent’s divorce that took effect the same year, which most people would refer to as ‘the best year of your high school’.

Instead, I finished school in this alien environment where no one speaks a word of English. I’m a banana so you can imagine how I had to face going to school every day with 1,200 pair of eyeballs always staring in my direction during assembly, recess and leaving school. I kept mostly to myself but I guess many people were just waiting to know me. Only if language wasn’t a barrier.

This may be a government school on the outside but, it’s ruled heavily by religion. Going to this school for just three months was hell too. Gang fights are a norm every day at this school, and they predictably break out every last bell. Racism was the order of the day too. I must have created a default fourth faction of my own when I entered this school: The Banana.

There was a great silver lining behind all the dark clouds though, however, and I have had learned a handful of priceless lessons ever since. The teachers at this school were great and showed no boundaries in their dedication. They were not motivated by money at all when they helped tutor me for free after school hours, what I needed most when I was also at my most broke too.

I must say that their sheer value and dedication had shamed many of the teachers from my former school. Seriously. I still remember their lessons by example very well, and I continue to practive them with spirit in my business everyday.

After settling my car loan in full, cruising around the town and reminiscing memories, I wrapped up the mini trip with a haircut.

BEFORE…

Me - Before

AFTER…

Me - After!

When time permits, I’ll put up some photos from my earlier school days back in SMK Damansara Jaya. I won’t be updating this blog for a while though, as I will be going overseas from April 12th through 19th.

Until then! 🙂

750 Traffic Tactics PLR: Launch Diary

The PLR Sale URL:
http://www.privatelabelrightsgold.com/750

Before Launch

    The PLR Sale
    Without divulging the figures, I conducted my demand research and product development with the assumption that I am on a tight budget. Spending a lot of money can be very tempting especially when I have more than enough but I wanted to prove that:

    * Product Launch success can be pulled off on a low budget,
    * It’s possible to conduct in the shoes of a one-man entrepreneur,
    * There IS such a thing called ‘low-cost, high-profit’,
    * It is easy to do a low-ticket sale with only a handful of JV Partners and affiliates.

    Product Creation
    Research and product development took me almost one month to complete. Of course, this didn’t mean that I spent 24 hours a day throughout the duration.

    [1] The product development was outsourced to two trusted team of ghostwriters to have it done simultenously, and I made sure they were knowledgeable enough to handle the task.

    [2] Sales Letter – I am skilled in this area thus web copywriting, naturally, was no big problem. Done within the same day and continuously improved until event of launch.

    [3] Graphics – had this outsourced to a random graphics designer. My mistake (keyword: random). The graphics were good as a complementary bonus but would have a lousy impact on sales. Even I could do better than this. And that’s exactly what I did; three hours went there.

    [4] Bonuses – I have created various products in the past so I picked a handful of relevant, good ones that can help my customers and thus add value to their purchase. A few Joint Venture Partners had voluntarily contributed their own bonuses thus labeled “Mystery Bonus Deals” in the Thank You Page.

    Promotion Tools
    I didn’t foresee this PLR Sale to be on as big a scale as PLRGold Master Rights Pack. Expected most JV Partners to have their own mailing lists. Thus I’ve prepared:

    * Promotion Emails (2 variants)
    * Follow-Up Emails (one to send 1-2 days later; one on final day)
    * Pay-Per-Click Ad (for any Adwords user)

    No prelaunch emails were given due to the nature of the PLR Sale.

    Contacting JV Partners
    I’ve limited the copies of the PLR Sale to 300. I contacted up to 30 JV Partners with 25 of them replied that they were interested in joining me in this sale. I emailed every one of them and reached the rest either by phone (local Internet Marketers), meeting in person (Singapore), and chat programs (MSN Messenger, Skype, GTalk).

    On the last few days before launch, I emailed the PLRGold Affiliates list (every partner is subscribed to the JVM1 system here as well as previous affiluates) and kept them updated.

    Gave preview copies to the product which will be on sale, and collected testimonials from JV Partners and Review marketers to be published on sales page when sale goes live.

    The Fasting Ritual
    As with any previous launches I have pulled off in the past, I abstained myself from eating meat for nine days before the “big day”. NO chicken, NO beef, NO pork… and certainly NO mutton. Eating fish and seafood are acceptable. Every time I go fasting, I realize it summons a lot of discipline. In this period of time:

    * I crave for success more than ever,
    * It reminds me of my humble beginnings,
    * I respect people who fast in this age, especially since we live in a modern world where advertising and media are more influential than ever.

Launch Sequence

    3rd April
    Tested the JVManager1 system for the second last time. Motivate affiliates and JV Partners with last minute introduction of cash and prizes for Top 5 + entry into Hall of Fame for anyone who helped make at least one sale for the event. Interesting to note that this is the stage where a lot of other JV Partners and Affiliates jump in on the last minute.

    4th April
    8:00 AM Eastern Time… Ban Kai!
    (If you didn’t watch the Bleach Anime, you haven’t really lived :-))

    Oh great… server crashed. Fantastic. Well wait a minute – I could see my own website though it was loading very slow. However, JVManager1 was having problems handling the influx of traffic going through the order process. As a result, the website had trouble accepting online orders in the first three hours.

    I couldn’t reach Aurelius Tjin, my friend who was hosting my PLRGold website, as he was on a holiday until 10th April. Got off the phone with Vince Tan and learned something new: CGI programs are resource hungry!

    Ian del Carmen took the led for now when I gave him permission to host his own link via his JVM2 and hosting. Sales accounted on Ian’s side became separate for the time being while waiting for server to be relieved of traffic stress.

    Answered 100’s of support tickets and JV Partner emails then went off to the cyber cafe nearby to play Company of Heroes to take my mind off the worry. Didn’t play for long though – watching the machine gun bullets flying and zipping through the environment and buildings being blown up in the game did nothing but remind me of the traffic zipping through my website and blowing up the server. It was really hard to enjoy a good game at this time.

    Three hours later, server became more stable and orders started flowing in. NEAT! Stayed up until morning to answer customer and prospect support tickets and keeping in constant touch with JV Partners.

    5th April – 24 Hour Update
    Two third of the packages are gone. I severely undestimated the number of Affiliates and JV Partner taking part in this PLR Sale. Of course, it’s a good problem to have. 🙂 And I have yet to email my own mailing list to tell them about my latest PLR Sale.

    Broadcasted the email to my members, customers and subscribers about my latest PLR Sale to see if this interests them. Kept in touch with other JV Partners via MSN Messenger and GTalk. Updated the latest standings as of Day 1 for the JV Leaderboard. Continued servicing my customers and answering prospective inquiries.

    6th April – The “Last Dance”
    58 out of 300 copies left. Updated the latest standings on the JV leaderboard and motivated Affiliates & JV Partners for the final push to sell out all copies. Have witnessed different marketing tactics by Affiliates such as follow up emails, product reviews, blogging, Adwords, and Web 2.0 methods.

    7th April – THE SELL OUT
    Finished on the dot at 12:00 AM Eastern Time (or 12:00 PM Malaysian time) and closed the PLR Sale with premature effect – mission accomplished: all 300 copies sold.

After Launch

Thanks a bunch to my marketing partners, customers and product development team for making this a success! 🙂

Back from Two Week’s Absence

Edmund’s Notes: I posted this post on 30th March 2008 and updated the previous post on 2nd April. I got back on today to find out that… it seemed my blog went back in time? Not only did I find this post in the drafts, the updates and comments seem to have been reversed back to some time ago. (???)

Hmmm… I don’t know what just happened but looks like I have to re-post this again and it’s sad that all the recent comments were gone too, including the photos taken in Singapore. Grrr! 🙁 Oh well…

Even in my busiest moments, I still make it a habit to blog at least once a week. Doing business can quickly turn into a chore sometimes, no matter how passionate I am about Internet Entrepreneurship. And my Personal Blog provides a good escapade as well as a good balance between work and enjoying life. 🙂

After checking out my last post to this blog (14th March)… wow, it’s been more than two weeks that I’ve been neglecting my poor Personal Blog! Yes I had been busy – I’ve been working on a couple of secret, ‘covert operations’ which at this stage it’s too early to reveal any information to the public. Yet.

Also, there hasn’t been anything else worthwhile to post about until only lately. If you’ve been dropping by almost every day expecting some update, this should make your visit worthwhile again. 🙂

NOTE: Even when I am not posting to this Blog, I make it a habit to keep my FaceBook status up to date, and as real-time as possible. I spend more time in Johor Bahru and Singapore this time around compared to Petaling Jaya/Kuala Lumpur. So to keep tabs on my current location, check out my FaceBook status on the left hand of this Blog ya? 😉

The Johor Bahru Retreat

As you probably notice by now, I seem to be spending more time in JB/Singapore than in PJ/KL. I find working from home the best for me compared to my temporary room in PJ, and for many reasons.

My mom cooks my meals here. In PJ, going out to eat every meal time is not only costly (though I don’t mind forking out a bit) but it’s a real time-killer. I clean my room very often – in fact, more often than when I’m in JB – but it gets dirty really, really quick too. Perhaps the house is old. The room isn’t a feasible place to produce inspiring ideas and my ability to work and be productive in that room rarely reaches optimum level. Sucks, right?

Last but not least, there’s something *creepy* about that room. A case of bad Feng Shui? Who knows. I’m giving it up real soon anyways.

Moving most of my things back to JB was one of the wiser decisions I’ve made this year, and it was a good start for business to roll into momentum and every other area in life starts to improve and get better. 🙂 Besides, I won’t make myself too easily available to ‘time vampires’ from now on.

Edmund Loh

Oh and did I also mention that the weather is more cooling in JB as well? Although the weather is getting warmer again, there are some really cold, rainy nights that I had to wear a jacket. 😉

One-Day Trip in Kuala Lumpur

Just two days ago, I had to make a quick trip back to Kuala Lumpur to retrieve my flight ticket – I’ll be going overseas in mid April to experience a different culture. And yes, go for a short holiday. 🙂

And since I was in KL, I might as well drop by and have my hair treated as well.

Eve Soh & Edmund Loh

That’s Eve Soh with me. 🙂 Be gentle with the head… it produces million dollar ideas!

Panny

Panny. My favorite chat buddy. 🙂

Single & Available… Want my Phone Number? ;-)

Single, attractive and available. Any guy interested in her? 😉

Kura, Kura & Kura

Walked by the pond at Central Park, in front of 1Utama. My favorite tortoises a.k.a. stray kuras. 🙂

Kura, Kura & Kura

Singapore Internet Marketing Commandos – Orchard

Next day: back in JB and then a hustle trip to meet the Singaporean Internet Marketing Commandos at Wheelock’s Place, Orchard. Met Jaz Lai and Dylan Loh.

This was also my first time meeting Shree ‘The Dating Coach’ in person. I did see his photo somewhere on FaceBook before this. You have to hand it that Social Networking sites and other web 2.0 applications are responsible for making the world flat and smaller every day. 🙂

Initially, looking for the trio was difficult. Dylan instructed me to go to Wheelock’s Place at Orchard. Not that I had been there before. Going to Orchard and looking for Wheelock’s was easy but because my handphone was practically useless in Singapore (read: no International roaming) and realizing I couldn’t receive incoming calls, Dylan couldn’t call me either.

Forget the phone booths, they’re not user friendly either as they assume the entire nation in Singapore uses the phone card. So, I took a blind guess looking for the Singaporean Internet Marketers at both Coffee Bean and Starbucks. And what do you know? They were camping at the corner of the Starbucks cafe! 🙂

EDIT: As said earlier at the beginning of this post, when I got back to my Personal Homepage I found out that not only this post was in draft mode, the updates to the previous post were gone too and so were the comments made in the past few days.

I’ll have to restore this post and the updates to the previous post on the Bali Event. The comments are gone and it’s a bummer I didn’t save the photos on my Singapore trip in my hard drive. What a way to start the morning but hope this doesn’t happen again next time!

Let’s Meet in Bali! (Updated 3rd April)

*** UPDATED 3rd APRIL: See bottom of this post for latest updates. ***

Hey There!

I’ll be speaking for the first time at the Bali Rendezvous in Bali, Indonesia. I hope to see you there, if you’re an Internet Marketer too and want to take your business to the next level.

I’ll come to the cheese real soon but first, here are quick details:

The Event: The Bali Rendezvous
Venue: Grand Hyatt Bali, Bali, Indonesia
Dates: 6 – 8th June 2008
Length: 3 Days 2 Nights
Full Details: LINK REMOVED

Even though it’s still three months away, I’m really steamed up with excitement about going to this event. Not because I’ll be speaking (it’s not my cup of tea) but it’s because of the people that are going to the event.

There’s a full list of speakers and marketing top guns heading to the small island on those dates but I’ll cover some of them here briefly just so you get a better idea who you’re going to be meeting:

1. Lee McIntyre – UK
Personally I’ve not heard of Lee McIntyre only until recently so I cannot comments about him and his expertise just yet. Still worth speculating.

2. James b Allen – Japan
Met him for the first time at World Internet Mega Summit, Singapore last year. Nice and pleasant chap! 🙂

3. James Brown – Japan
Now this is what I’m talking about – low-profile, but really embarrasses a lot of so-called famous marketers out there. He may not look like he’s deeply involved in the Internet Marketing niche. But if you have 500 other active niche sites like James, the Internet Marketing niche is just a nice bonus to toy around with. He is also someone I look forward to meeting in person.

4. Kevin Riley – Japan
Har de har… look who we’ve got. General Riley. My first online encounter with Kevin was in the most unlikely place on the Internet: the Warrior Forum – OFF TOPIC forum. We may joke a lot online – and offline too when we met in Singapore last year – but hey, there’s no denying that Kevin makes a good partner in business too. He’s unselfishly helped me with my past promotions like Private Label Rights Gold. And the least I could do for him is top his affiliate list for his recent Product Launch.

Commander Edmund Loh

Tough luck for your affiliate army Kevin.

5. John Delavera – USA
This is another top marketing figure I look forward to meeting. Who doesn’t know him? The great grand daddy of Turbo software and products, and the mind behind the infamous JVManager 1 & 2! He remains an enigma until now (notice we’ve not seen any picture of John before?). John will be speaking for the first time in Asia. 🙂

6. GUEST SPEAKER: Ian del Carmen – Philippines
Fireball dude… we’ll meet again!

7. GUEST SPEAKER: Edmund Loh – Malaysia
… What can I say about him? 🙂

Other speakers going to the event include Willie Crawford, Paul Kleinmaulman and Dr. Mani.

Attendees also enjoy these great perks:

* Business networking opportunities
* 5-star hotel accommodation for 3 Days 2 Nights
* Take your family and visit Bali too!
* Exclusive online Bali Membership
* Full Internet access
* The Bali boys will personally escort you from the airport to the event too
+PLUS MORE!

Hope to see you there! 🙂

***** LATEST UPDATE *****

Just got this email.

Canceled Bali Rendezvous

You might think this is an April Fool’s joke, considering this email was sent on 1st April. But having been in the loop of things that led up to the cancellation of this Internet Marketing event, I knew this to be for real. And in many ways, I saw this coming somehow. So no surprises. Evidently, the website is no longer there when I checked it out.

In respect to the organizers and a few individuals involved who are sensitive towards the internal conflicts within the Bali Rendezvous Committee, I won’t dive into the details.

Personally, I had been looking forward to attending this event as it would be my first speaking gig of any kind. And the opportunity to meet up and network with other top-tier Internet Entrepreneurs from around the world? A priceless incentive. In fact, I had purchased my flight tickets to Jakarta and Bali in advance just more than a week back.

Unfortunately, the little series of events that unfolded lately eventually led up to the painful decision made by the Bali Rendezvous Committee to cancel the event.

It’s a bummer it had to end up like this. 🙁 Even though I am not part of the organizing team (read: guest speaker), I’ve learned a handful of lessons from this, especially that it goes to show that some things in life are just plain unpredictable, and beyond control. What I can do is make the best of the situation.

In this case, since I’ve already bought my flight tickets… I might as well go for a holiday. 🙂

It looks like my first speaking gig will be elsewhere – another time, another event, and another venue. I look forward to seeing you all soon, only elsewhere.