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how to start with affiliate marketing

Wondering how to start with affiliate marketing? Well, you're on the right track. Affiliate marketing is a good way to earn a supplementary, or full-time income online.... and it's one of the easiest ways to get started.

In this quick start guide you'll discover a comprehensive and effective step-by-step plan of action on how to start with affiliate marketing, avoid the most common mistakes, create a reliable and sustainable online income stream, and be successful.

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Definition of Affiliate Marketing

What Is Affiliate Marketing

Affiliate marketing is a type of business model that involves getting paid a percentage of the revenue generated from a sale (often referred to as "a commission") for promoting someone else's product or service.

How Affiliate Marketing Works

After you do your research to find an affiliate product that you want to promote and sign-up and once approved, you'll receive you a unique ID.

This means that when the visitors click on those links they are automatically tracked, which allows the merchant to know that you are the affiliate responsible for the sale.

As a simple example, let’s say you’re an affiliate that’s promoting a product that costs $100 and the owner of the product agrees to pay you 40% commission as an affiliate. For each sale you generate through your promotions, you will received $40 (40% of $100).

Why Affiliate Marketing

Affiliate marketing is one of the simplest, quickest ways to start earning money online and have several advantages..

  • You don’t have to purchase anything
  • You don’t have to ship anything
  • You don’t have to handle credit card transactions
  • You don’t have to worry about handling refunds, returns, queries, etc.
  • You don't require any employees
  • Your business runs 24/7

In addition to the above, it provides you a real opportunity to earn passive income - you can build an affiliate marketing website or create an affiliate campaign once and it will continue to generate income for you for a long time, without having to put in much more work.

How To Get Started In Affiliate Marketing

The following are my recommended steps on how to start with affiliate marketing. There are based on my own experience with affiliate marketing over the last 15+ years, as well as my experience with helping others find success with affiliate marketing.

how to get started in affiliate marketing

Understand The Affiliate Marketing Basics

As with anything else, you'll want to start off by learning the basics... creep before you walk!

Firstly, if you're an absolute newbie, then get a better understanding of the ABCs of affiliate marketing by going through the Affiliate Marketing Building Blocks Course within the Classroom.

After you've understood the ABCs, then get a quick, but more in-depth appreciation of how affiliate marketing works and the steps involved. So, at this stage you'll want to learn a bit about things such as:

At this point, you should realize that affiliate marketing shouldn't be thought of just some quick way to make money online... it's going to require some work on your part, but do it right and you will be happy.

Develop The Right Mindset - The Ignored Factor

If I had to choose one single thing that made the most impact on my success it's this - developing the right mindset.

Most people get involved in affiliate marketing as a side gig... a way to supplement their income from their 9-to-5.

Since that's the case, what often happens is that there is a half-hearted approach to affiliate marketing... you're not really focused on making it successful because there is that psychological "safety net" of the salary from the 9-5.

Fundamentally, here's what developing the right mindset means...

Treat Affiliate Marketing Like a Real Business... And It Will Reward As Such.

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Here's what is also means...

  • Focus on providing value to people rather than just trying to sell stuff to people so you make money - provide value, and the money will come
  • Investing in getting the right knowledge and resources for your business - with any business venture, you'll have to acquire knowledge and resources. Look at the money you spend to acquire these as an investments... and work towards getting a return on your investment.
  • Improve your productivity - Set goals and taking focused action to achieve them
  • Having patience and believing in yourself

Overcome These Detrimental / Deadly Habits

Many people that try to make money online end up failing. And one of the main reasons for that is something called Shiny Object Syndrome. It's the habit of chasing after, or getting distracted by, the latest business opportunities, buying product after after product, in the pursuit of the dream of quick riches to financial freedom.

… unfortunately, it's very common among aspiring affiliate marketers. And it's a surefire formula to failure.

Other habits that are detrimental to success include unproductivity, perfectionism, trying not to invest in the right tools and giving up too soon.

To learn more about these habits and how to overcome them, check out the Affiliate Rescue course in the Classroom.

Avoid These Affiliate Marketing Mistakes

In addition to dealing with the bad habits, it's a good idea to know and understand the common mistakes that affiliate marketers make... so you can avoid them earlier than later!

Here's what I'm talking about...

  • Thinking that it's just about making money - thinking this way may get you involved in unethical and unsustainable activities just to make money, which detrimental in the long term. As I mentioned before, rather than just thinking about the money, focus on providing value to your audience. Think about it this way - as an affiliate marketer, your job is present (not sell) your audience with solutions to the problems that they are experiencing.
  • Believing that it's so easy that you wouldn't need to do any work - although affiliate marketing is one of the easiest ways to earn money online, it still does require effort on your part. Many people go in expecting that it's a "push button" solution... and once they realize that there is some work required they get disenfranchised and give up.
  • Not building your own assets - I talking here about your own website and your list of emails subscribers. Don't let your business be based solely on other people's platforms - such as IG, FB, YouTube, etc. - because if these go down, then your business would come to a halt.
  • Focusing on too many things at once - this is a surefire path to information overload and overwhelm. During my earlier years in affiliate marketing, when I started seeing some results, I guess the excitement of it all looking at so many things at once... I got involved in several niches at the same time, I got interested in many affiliate products, I started to look into different traffic methods, I started to dive into other ways to make money online. 

I got overwhelmed and frustrated, and my commissions started to dwindle. It is much better, more productive and more efficient, to focus on one project at a time.

So, you've learned the basics, you understand what's the right mindset, and you know the mistakes to avoid. The next step is to learn about the more advanced strategies of affiliate marketing.

Learn The Advanced Strategies

So, you've learned the basics and you've know to right mindset to have... and which mistakes to avoid. The next step is to learn more advanced strategies of affiliate marketing. 

  • List Build and Email Marketing - building a list of email subscribers and emailing them with content, building a relationship with them and promoting affiliate offers is vital for long-term revenue of your affiliate business.
  • Building Funnels - A funnel is basically a set of steps your audience takes to go from a visitor to a subscriber to becoming a buyer. If done strategically, setting up funnels improve your conversions and increase your revenue.
  • Improving Conversions - Conversions is about getting your visitor to take specific actions. The bottom line is that improving your conversions increases your revenue!
  • Copywriting - Essentially, copywriting is about convincing people to take specific action based on the words you write. It's one way to improve your conversions, which as indicated earlier, leads to an increase in your revenue. You can learn a bit more about copywriting for affiliate marketing here. 

Take Action

You can learn all there is to learn about affiliate marketing, but if you don't take action and implement what you learn, you're not going to be earning any income.

There's a quote from Jim Rohn, an entrepreneur, author and motivational speaker, that covers it bluntly but succinctly...

"Don't let your learning lead to knowledge. You'll become a fool. Let your learning lead to ACTION. You can become wealthy"

Remember this too... you are going to faced with hurdles and you may experience failures. This may discourage you, but don't let it. Dust yourself off and continue on the journey. You wouldn't be starting from scratch, you'll be continuing from experience.

Are You Ready To Get Started With Affiliate Marketing?

So there you have it - a plan of action for starting with affiliate marketing. It's in your hands now to get started. And I'm here to help you on your journey.

If you have any questions or want to share a bit about your journey write a comment below.

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