I was once starting out in internet marketing and affiliate marketing very much like you are now. I initially approached it as a fast and easy way to quit my full time six figure job and start making seven figures working 3-4 hours a day (as some of you likely are). I bought all the products (thousands of dollars worth) only to wind up realizing that I had wasted all of that money and thousands more trying to use the techniques that were hyped up by so called “gurus”.

I wanted to write this article to hopefully save you from making some of these same mistakes. This is by no means an exhaustive list it is simply 11 things you need to keep in mind and watch out for as you try and get into affiliate marketing on the internet.

1. It is NOT fast easy money. Most (if not all) of the popular big names in affiliate marketing (the ones selling you all the “secret sauce” products) made their bones and their fortunes when internet marketing was far easier. There was very little competition and Google wasn’t taking specific steps to limit the success of affiliates on their marketing platform, Adwords. You will be competing in a fierce environment that is very dynamic and can change on a dime.

2. 99% of the information in 99% of the products being sold to you can be found for FREE. That’s right. Many products for AdWords, Clickbank, etc are simply re-stating the info you can get on their websites in the help section. If you search for super affiliate blogs you can easily get a complete picture of affiliate marketing and how to do it on the web.

3. Learning how to find products and do keyword research is crucial. There is plenty of general info out there on these topics but nothing (at least that I’ve come across) that really gets down to brass tacks and shows you the thought process that creates a useful system.

4. Affiliate marketing product pages are SALES PAGES.  Many “bonuses” given for buying through affiliate links are also available for free and are just products that they have resale rights for – in other words, they don’t add value. Don’t fall for the sales pitch without knowing what you’re buying.

5. “Gurus” Count on New Affiliates Flooding The Market. They look at you as an industry, a niche to market to and take money from. They count on you to buy every product in sight looking for that “magic secret” that will give you unheard of wealth. Don’t fall into this trap like so many other people new to the market. Ask them if they’ve used it and to show you proof/results.

6. The “Gurus” are all in collusion and push each other’s products. You will notice that if you sign up for email lists from the top names in affiliate marketing, you will get emails pushing the same products (most of the time new products from a member of the “guru buddy network”). This is known as joint venture or JV marketing. They are all trying to take advantage of you and the mindset described in number four above. Be aware of this.

7. 99% of all “reviews” for affiliate products are in fact sales pages. If you are searching for a product and see an Adwords ad or search result that says “Product X Review – don’t buy before reading this, you may get scammed” or “Project X Scam” or “Is Project X a Scam?”, I can guarantee you that by the time you finish reading the sales page it will be clear that this is simply another affiliate selling the product to you.

8. No one who is successful that is selling a product is EVER going to give away their methods unless they are not using them anymore. Think about it. Why would they give away the store? Affiliate marketing on the internet is extremely competitive. There is no way that anyone who makes a living actually doing internet marketing is going to willfully increase their competition.

9. You must learn some HTML and be able to create landing pages and websites. There is NO WAY AROUND THIS. The faster you realize this, the better off you will be. If you think you can jump on Google and just send traffic to an offer cheaply and effectively, you’re doomed.

10. You must understand the basics of marketing. That means copywriting, market selection, cost per acquisition analysis, conversion rates, etc. You need to learn the mechanics and art of selling.

11. You have to actually get out there and DO IT. It is estimated that less than 10% of all people who enter internet marketing will actually put what they learn into practice. You must try. You will fail. You will lose money. Don’t let that stop you. Only 1 out of 10 campaigns will show promise (if that). Keep doing it and you will find them and hone your skills. Notice I said “show promise”. You will have to tweak, test, track and manage most of your campaigns to make them profitable.

As I mentioned, there are many more things to beware of when first entering this business. There is a lot of snake oil being sold by some very crafty people. If you buy products and are having a tough time making them work, ASK QUESTIONS. Get the author to explain personally. This is what you are paying for. Anyone who truly believes what they publish should be happy to help.

This business can bring you a lot of wealth and freedom of time and lifestyle but like anything worth doing, it is difficult and demanding with no guarantee of success.

Good luck out there.

That’s it. No sales pitches. No affiliate links. No ad copy. Just hope this small article helps some of you avoid the mistakes that I’ve (and countless others) have made.

James Lingk

Thursday, October 25th, 2007 at 4:33 pm
Affiliate Marketing
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