I’m Tom De Spiegelaere
I’m a digital marketer based in Brisbane, Australia (web designer turned full-time affiliate marketer – a decision that tripled my income in 7 months and reduced required work hours by about 80%).
If you’re interested in starting an affiliate project yourself, or want more info on what it’s all about and how it works, head over to my tools/resources page.
Anyway, I like building projects for this whole “internet web” thing. Collaboration is my secret, working with people that have complementary skills is incredibly powerful!
Sometimes you find you work so well with a specific partner, that a single JV can grow into multiple projects across different industries, introducing the need for a parent entity to house all the projects… which is how Search District was born (a collaboration between Adam Morris and me).
I have a constant urge to make a difference on the web, and my many projects are my attempts at doing just that… some actually succeed!
This is a rough timeline and doesn’t include every single failure or success (there are more failures than successes, but the monetary value of the successes far outweigh that of the combined failures… guess this is called “failing forward”?)
Moved from Belgium to Australia
SEO learning time
Started creating sites with the sole purpose of ranking them in Google, got smashed down… a lot. Dabbled in affiliate marketing, failed… a lot.
Started a web agency
Created so many sites throughout 2012 I actually started becoming pretty good at building WordPress sites… and ranking them (if the competition wasn’t too hard). Maybe I can offer this as a service… become a web designer!
Domination + way too many leads
Started dominating Brisbane for web design and seo related keywords. I was more on the phone with potential clients than actually building sites, so I contacted another agency to help me take the excess leads.
Google penalty #1
Dominating again, yay!
Yes, back in 2013, it was that easy…
On Christmas day, this was a hard one!
New, more expensive, but safer strategies pay off!
My PPL site phase
Built 5 PPL sites (pay-per-lead) at the end of 2014, 2/5 are ranking well, one is making $1k+/mo.
Doubled my income!
A combination of finally raising my prices, and going into a co-working space (it’s hard to work with kids in the house).
Want something different (Part 1)
Started a new affiliate project.
Want something different (Part 2)
Working part-time as an SEO manager in another agency.
Chiang Mai SEO Conference – The one that changed my life
The info gained in Thailand boosted my affiliate income from $500/mo to $3k+/mo… and I was only there for 4 days.
Affiliate income is exploding!
Affiliate $$$ overtakes the income from my job + web agency clients combined… so I quit my job and start letting agency clients go. Any new leads coming in go to the agency I worked at, for a nice commission if they close the sale.
Empire Retreat 3.0 in Phuket
A mastermind retreat organized by Empire Flippers, it was pretty epic :).
Chiang Mai Conference 2017
Damn I love this place!
Empire Retreat 4.0 in Phuket
Chiang Mai Conference 2018
The tradition continues…
AWA Conference in Bangkok
Visiting Singapore (popped into Ahrefs HQ)
Chiang Mai Conference 2019
Networking, masterminds, conference, chilling, working…