What is affiliate marketing and does it work?

By | June 5, 2017

These days, it seems that everybody is searching for meaningful ways to earn money from home. That’s hardly surprising. The global economy that continues to flourish as a result of easy access to the internet by the masses. There are so many available options as it relates to making money online. Among these options is affiliate marketing, which is widely viewed as the best way to start, especially if you’re a newbie to internet marketing. So, what is affiliate marketing and does it work?

Of course, there’s the one question that everybody wants to know the answer to immediately. Is there any money to be made in affiliate marketing? Enough to earn a nice supplemental income? Enough to quit your job and pursue it on a full-time basis?

Yes, you certainly can … however

The answers to all the above questions are “yes.” But there’s a little more to it than that.

It’s true that what you choose to market and promote can make a significant difference in your level of success. But that’s not the only factor that can spell the difference between achieving excellence and failing. Just as important is your willingness to do what needs to be done in the correct manner and on a consistent basis.

Affiliate marketing is considered to be an excellent home-based business because there’s no need for a lot of start-up money. As an affiliate, there is no inventory to keep track of. But that’s not all. You don’t have to produce, stock or serve as a product distributor. Plus, you are not required to deliver a service.

Affiliates refer new customers to other businesses

Affiliates market products and services of other companies. When customers make a purchase through the affiliate, he or she gets a commission from that sale. The role of an affiliate is simply being the person who refers new clients to other businesses.

But like so many other home business programs, affiliate marketing has some issues. The major problem is how folks are repeatedly miseducated and grossly misguided about the nature of this type of business. Sadly, the storyline is all wrong. There are far too many instances where “the enlightened gurus” paint a picture that’s nowhere near the truth.

They would have you believe that as an affiliate, you can earn four and five-figure monthly incomes very quickly. Even worse is that they will persuade you — if you’re not careful — that you can rake in big dollars without having to put any real effort into it.

That’s just not true.

There is no such program that will produce riches with a few clicks here and there. The so-called “set it and forget it” website is a myth of grand proportions.

The real deal about affiliate marketing

The real-world scenario for affiliate marketing isn’t any different than any of the other work-at-programs out there. As for how much money one can earn, there are a few affiliate marketers who have a six-figure or seven-figure annual income. But that’s more of an exception than the rule.

Even so, there are a good number of affiliate marketers who consistently earn a very good full-time income. Still, what’s really sad is that the vast number of folks in affiliate marketing aren’t many any money. Now, that doesn’t mean you should forget about getting into this type of online business enterprise.

Poor planning and lack of execution are the prime reasons why there are so many affiliate marketers who haven’t had any success. To do well in this game, it’s all about being totally committed and executing a workable game plan. You must be determined to find a way to make affiliate marketing work for you.

Nobody can make that choice but you.

Here’s how you can make good things happen as an affiliate

Learning what to do in order to do well in affiliate marketing is not overly difficult. But it’s not a piece of cake either. To succeed, it takes planning, know-how, and consistency to earn a substantial income. Here are some tidbits of advice that will help in your journey to build a viable business that will sustain itself.

  • Avoid el cheapo affiliate products/services. There’s a good reason to stick with quality. The items you choose to promote sends a clear message to potential customers about who you are as a business person. If your products/services are shabby, you are doomed to fail. Income should not be your sole focus as a marketer. Quality must come first because your role is to satisfy the customer.
  • Be sure to do your research on affiliate programs and affiliate networks that you plan to sign up with. You need to have an understanding about the money issues such as commission percentage, along with when and how you are paid. Do this before your start putting together any marketing campaigns.
  • Whatever you choose to market should match the content on your home business blog or website. Example: If the content on your blog/website focuses on diet and weight loss, it will do you no good to post affiliate links about hunting and fishing. You will not make many sales if any.
  • Use different methods to promote. Social media and Search Engine Optimization (SEO) aren’t the only proven ways to drive traffic to your website or blog. ¬†Get a good understanding of your target market. By doing so, you learn the best ways to connect with the people who are the most interested in buying what you have to offer.
  • Never underestimate the power of a having an email list. It’s no surprise that the top affiliate marketers have become masters at email marketing. With an email list, you have a group of potential customers who can be categorized as “the most likely to buy.” The skillful use of email marketing is known to produce a noticeable boost in affiliate earnings.

One final thought

Affiliate marketing is a proven way to make a nice income as an online entrepreneur. But please understand that success does not come overnight. It’s not automatic. And it does require that you put in some sweat equity on your own behalf.

To do well in this or any other business venture, you must have a viable plan that you can implement. It’s mandatory that you get involved daily and take action consistently. Dreams will not work unless you do. In other words, plan the work and work the plan.

I’m very interested in getting your feedback about this entry. Please share your comments and insights in the comments section.

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