In a recent survey conducted by Marketing Sherpa, affiliate merchants were asked about the main challenges in affiliate internet marketing. The clear majority responded that it was finding and recruiting high quality affiliates.
This is not surprising. Affiliate internet marketing is a great example of the 80/20 rule. Eighty percent of affiliates generate only twenty percent of the profits while twenty percent of affiliate marketers generate eighty percent of the revenue.
Why the disparity? Part of the reason is that many people are just getting into affiliate marketing and have a learning curve to go thru. That is understandable but a larger reason is that many affiliates whether beginner or grizzled veteran are making mistakes that are costing them big time dollars and will continue to do so.
1. Not treating it as a business
Affiliate Marketing has many advantages such as no overhead, no products to stock or customer complaints to deal with. Just promote the product and if someone buys you get paid. Great but it is still a business. That means you must:
a. Set up an action plan and follow thru on it.
b. Set realistic timetables for generating income.
c. Get a website
d. Buy a domain name
e. Research your target markets
f. Brand your affiliate business
g. Write content
j. Keep records
And much more. This is not a hobby. Earning income online is a full time effort. If you have not done so already set up your office space and allot specific times in your day where you work on nothing but your affiliate business.
2. Choosing the wrong affiliate program
Because of the never ending advertising most of us face on a daily basis, there is a tendency for many affiliates to get caught up in the hype. They choose a big ticket item because it pays out great commissions or some product that is being advertised as the next great thing. There is nothing wrong with this unless you do not do your homework. Of course you should have some interest in the product but the more important point is there should be a market for that affiliate program you want to promote.
Watch the news; check out the forums, read some articles. Ask questions or conduct surveys on your website. Do not confine your research to just learning about your affiliate program. Check out the world around it and how it could affect your target market.
3. Too many at a Time
One of the things top affiliate marketers have in common is focus. The ability to pick one affiliate program, bring it to profit, put a system in place so the program runs on autopilot (providing the affiliate with steady income), rinse and repeat.
But it starts with the one affiliate program. Many affiliates naturally want to generate multiple streams of income but expending your effort on five things at once increases the chances of not achieving any of them. Pick one that has some interest to you and that you already know has a solid target market, and then follow your action plan. When you start making a steady profit, then move on to the next program. Also try to put an autopilot system in place. Getting clear of the day to day activities of running any online business is the only true way to grow that business.
Building a money making affiliate business that can run without you takes hard work and patience with yourself. Do your research, choose the right program, give all of your attention and effort to it, then proceed to the next affiliate product. Treat your affiliate business like a business and you can not go wrong.