In this episode, Derek is joined by Carl Ocab, a legend in the Philippines. They will discuss Carl’s background and experience in Internet marketing services.
- Carl started blogging when he was 13 years old. He was introduced to the world of blogging by his father when his father suggested for them to try blogging instead of online gaming.
- Instead of playing, they created blogs on Blogger, and then copy paste the content for the week. Since they are both just 13 years old without any expertise except for the game they were playing. So, they created a site about that online game and they added a forum. Fortunately, they were able to create a small community.
- They monetized the site with Google Adsense and after about 2-3 months they were able to get the threshold of 100 dollars. Then after two to three weeks, they received their first cheque.
- After that gaming site, Carl started carlocab.com as a blog first. His catchphrase was Make Money Online with a 13-year-old.
- Carl briefly discussed an overview of the Internet marketing agency and what he’s been building over the last three years. They develop WordPress sites for clients in the States and their clients re-sell their WordPress sites for three-five thousand dollars.
- Carl started blogging at the very young of 13 and made money writing about what he loves and knows.
- The catchphrase for Carl’s was Make Money Online with a 13-year-old.
- Carlocab.com’s biggest break was when they reached the front page and became number 1 for 1 to 2 years.
Hi, this is the Outsource Accelerator Podcast. As always my name is Derek Gallimore and this is episode number 129. Today, I am excited to be joined by Carl Ocab. Which is he was an internet sensation from the age of 13 which is about sort of 10, 11 years ago now and he was. became a very well known and respected blogger here in the Philippines. Of course 10, 11 years ago both when you are 13 but also in the technology space is a long long time so he’s got a lot of good experience to share here. I’m sure you will enjoy. If you want to get in touch with Carl at all then, of course, go to our show notes which is at outsourceaccelerator.com/129. Enjoy.
Derek: Okay Hi and welcome everybody. Today, I’m super excited to be joined by Carl Ocab. Hi Carl. How are you?
Carl: Good. Great. Good.
Derek: And, Carl, is a bit of a legend in the Philippines. He has been quite a sort of popularized blogger and from what I understand from the age of 13 so and now has an Internet marketing agency so I’m super interested to hear about Carl’s background. His journey to this spot also kind of drew on his experience in terms of Internet marketing services. So thank you so much for joining us Carl. I suppose initially would you be out to just introduce yourself and your journey to this point.
Carl: Yeah sure. Actually it started. You’re right. Yeah. When I was 13 years old and that was around 10 11 years ago. So it was a long time ago. I started with blogging and it started when my cousin and I we were addicted to this certain online game here in the Philippines. And 11 years ago, there were no DSL connections here in the Philippines. So we have to go to that old school route which is the dial up connection and with dial up you have to connect your PC to a telephone and then you also have to buy this card, an Internet card to connect to the Internet. And that was super expensive back then because you pay per hour. And the speed is just terrible. So to play that online game you have to spend our allowance on the Internet card plus we also have to buy this certain card for the game. So we’re paying our hourly both before the Internet and the game and you know basically because of that we just burned through our allowance at a very quick time. So when my dad noticed what we were doing that we just play games all day long and we would end up with no money. He suggested that we try blogging because back then it might that is you know he’s a bit techie so he reads about different stuff and he encountered blogging but he he never really tried it. He just encountered it and he introduced blogging to us because. I mean he thought that it would be something that we would be able to do. Because he read that people are making money through blogging and Adsense. So that’s what we did what we did the first we started blogs on Blogger.com. So that’s the blog sponsored blogs today. We created blogs there about random things because we don’t know where to start. But we read this article that in order to make money blogging you have to have a good content. So that was way, way back before. And we, you know, we tried to think of ways to produce quality content and what we came up with was to copy and paste content from other sites because there’s already quality content there. I mean I’m 13 and my cousin was probably fifteen back then so we did that. We spent the whole week. We didn’t play a single hour of the game. We just blog, created blogs on Blogger, and then copy paste the content for the week. And then suddenly the next week we were surprised that the blogs were deleted. I mean of course it was devastating because we spent money on the dial up connection. Instead of playing, we created these blogs and then after we all got deleted.
Derek: Did they have the technology back then to check out plagiarism or duplicate content?
Carl: Oh yes I think because Blogger was already owned by Google back then. So yeah they were able to check that. Or probably someone reported our blogs.But after that we almost gave up. But you know we were hanging to this idea that we could make money through blogging. So we tried that again and this time we of course opted to create our own content and as 13 year old or as themes we can’t think of a topic that we have an expertise in except for the game we were playing so we created a site about that online game and we added a forum. I think we started using wordpress that time and then we added a forum, it’s called BB Press. I think it’s plugin for WordPress and then with that. Fortunately we were able to build a small community because that online game, you can refer people to your sites as well because there’s a chat function and people were chatting you know sharing ideas and giving tips, tricks on how to play the game on our site. And what we did is we monetized the site with Google Adsense and after I think about 2 3 months we were able to get the threshold of 100 dollars.
Carl: And after two or three weeks we got the cheque because back then, Adsense would send the cheque, an actual cheque, and not just deposit on your account. So it was very, I mean, I can still feel the feeling of receiving that 100 dollar cheque because it changed us because it gave us an idea that you can make money just by you know fiddling around with your laptop.
Derek: And the first cheque is always the best isn’t it? the first thing, that was the most powerful memory. Wow. And so you were and you weren’t getting affiliate commissions from the game at all? It was, It was just actually pure Adsense?
Carl: Yeah, just pure Adsense. And we, I think there was no affiliate for that certain game but we didn’t have any idea about the affiliate market thing back then.
Derek: And as a comparison then I mean I struggle to actually think back 13 years and where the technology and industry was. But was that kind of standard what you were dealing with there with the Internet card and the pricing? Was it any different in the West do you think Or was it was it more expensive? Were you a lot less sort of easily exposed to online things in the Philippines? Do you have any sort of reference points for that?
Carl: I think back then in the States they were still, you saying, a big part is still using dial up. But in the Philippines, almost everyone has a dial-up connection.
Derek: And I suppose as a slight comment today, slower speeds and still more expensive today yeah?
Derek: Interesting and then so kind of fast forwarding a little bit then you caught the bug and you know honed your skills I imagine. How did you, where did you develop from that point? Did you carry on with school? Did you go to university?
Carl: Yeah definitely I finished college. So after that gaming site I started carlocab.com as a blog at first so my idea there was to just share my experiences on how I made money online and then through that, we were able to create a catchphrase for the site. That’s probably one of the biggest reasons why it got controversial, the title for the site was Make Money Online with a 13 year old. So you know everyone who was seeing that they they’d be curious and read the site and linked to the site. So that was pretty cool. And my goal for the website was to rank number 1 on Google for the keyword “make money online”. And back then it was a very competitive keyword.
Derek: Yeah still is huh?
Carl: Yeah well it still is definitely. And so a lot of SEOs when I posted about it on my blog that my goal was to rank number one for the keyword Make Money Online, a lot of SEOs, bloggers, and other internet marketers are thinking that I was crazy because I was competing the number one Website back then was Bigvertiser I think and they’re an advertising agency. So they think I was crazy for you know having that goal. But when I did my research I found that it’s very doable and less than a year’s time. So after five six seven months I hit the front page and eventually reached number one and stayed there for I think around 1 to 2 years. So yes I think that was the big break for the carlocab.com site.
Derek: And that’s quite a fascinating approach is quite a noble occurrence for me because I imagine people were observing you then and as you did make page one it would have created more, more chatter about you.
Carl: More links!
Derek: Yeah. Quite a fascinating approach actually.
Carl: And then from there was the break because people now were asking me how how they’d rank Google, how do I optimize my website on page wise, and how do you how do I build links et cetera et cetera. And then from there I got the idea of doing it for them instead of just teaching it. So I was still in college. I think high school and then college afterwards so I didn’t really have much time to do it. So I still wanted to finish my school so I concentrated on finishing my school and then when I graduated three years ago I started the agency. After graduation you know using actually, I just bootstrapped it using the money for the money I got from the blog and other you know WordPress themes etc..
Derek: Wow, and throughout that time you obviously maintained your blog and you maintained effect for your audience and your traffic and you know you were kind of conscientiously kind of maintain your audience so that when you were able to monetize it fully then they were still there for you.
Carl: Oh yeah and I got them on the list so that I can email them regularly even though I was not that active on my blog anymore. Since you know I mean college is, will get to busy and not just the school choice. You know it’s social life and the other stuff you can do. So I got them on the list that even today that I can email them and announce to them whatever I want so I guess that’s a very important part especially with blogs to capture the needs of your visitors.
Derek: I mean I’m on your website now but are you still have the original blog articles are they still within the site?.
Carl: Oh yeah, if you go to the header, you’ll see a link there that says blog. So all of the articles are still there.
Derek: It’s good,are they still pretty powerful? You get a bit of link juice from the old articles.
Carl: The links are still there but I think for me the articles right now it’s kind of like my diary because it goes way back ten years ago. Sometimes you know when I get bored I read some of my old articles and you know I get a good laugh out of it because you know the writing style is different. The ABS are still good. But you know some techniques of course SEO-wise can you know get dated as well.
Derek: Yeah absolutely. I mean it’s probably an interesting kind of heuristic to to see the evolution of a kind of SEO tactics as well. Yeah? The whole thing changes. Fantastic! And then now I mean I want to get back to really deep dive into Carl Ocab, the agency and how that how that works but do you want to give us a brief overview of the agency and what you’ve been building over the last three years?
Carl: I’m sorry. What was that?
Derek: Do want to give us an overview of the Internet marketing agency and what you’ve been building over the last three years?
Carl: Yeah sure. So basically what we concentrated on is WordPress sites because when I started blogging after blogger or the blogspot blogs, for the rest of the 10 11 years I was using WordPress.So it’s definitely all one of my core CSM. So that’s what my company concentrates on because WordPress is you know SEO optimize very fast. And. You know it’s free. So that’s what we concentrate on. So what we do is we develop WordPress sites for clients in the States and they’re selling our WordPress sites for threes four five thousand bucks and they just get it from us for three figures which is very very cheap and you know they don’t do a lot of work. They just pass whatever the client their client needs and then we do it for them.
Derek: Right so you are effectively a sort of wholesale production.
Carl: Yes. And actually I think what the difference is is we have project managers that we can provide for them. So for example they close the client and they don’t want or they want to pass the communication to us. Our project managers can communicate with their clients posing as an employee of their company so that you know they don’t have to do anything at all they just have to get the sale and we’ll do everything for them.
Derek: Wow. So completely white label. That’s amazing. Carl, I’ll get you back because I really want to deep dive into exactly that and the office and you know we do promote predominantly outsourcing an incredible skill base that is in the Philippines so it’s really interesting as well. You know you kind of predominantly are solely focused on the foreign market engines which is really powerful. Thank you so much for joining us. If you, of course, if anyone wants to reach out to you how can they do that?
Carl: They can just simply go to my website carlocab.com or they can search me on Google Carl Ocab.
Derek: Fantastic. I bet you appear number one in that search. Incredible. Thank you so much.
Carl: Yeah thanks. Derek.
Derek: Ok. That was Carl Ocab. Thank you so much Carl for that. I learnt a lot. We are going to get Carl back in a few trips to talk about his web design agency which is also called Carl Ocab. If you want to get in touch with Carl at all then please just go to our show notes which is at outsourcingaccelerator.com/129. And of course if you want to ask us any questions then just email us at [email protected]