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What does it take to be a successful affiliate marketer?
...do you have what it takes?
rfung




msg:540983
 5:48 am on Mar 12, 2005 (gmt 0)

I've just put down my current month's issue of Entrepreneur, which has motivated me for about a year with daydreams of escaping the rat race, when it occurred to me - I'm doing AM, and there's no way I'd want to start a offline business - too much hassle, stress, etc. Too much like real work. :) Funny how picky we can get.

I'm good doing what I am - if and when I bring it to the next level, I'll be getting all the benefits as if I had a million dollar revenue company with a 10th of the work. Who wouldn't want that? Sounds like a no-brainer, right?

Well, but interestingly enough - not everyone when posed with this huge carrot in front of them, care or feel they can take move onwards. Just like I feel I'd be overwhelmed with trying to start a 'real' business, others feel like this html thing is too complicated to sort out. Others (for instance our brethren in the Webmaster forums) rather work as consultants and get paid that way - the risk of starting a website and not know if it will pan out being greater than what they're willing to risk. They have the technical skill, and yet that's not enough to be successful at AM.

And then we have musicians, writers, psychologist and people from all walks of life decide to throw in some content in a webpage, and find themselves richer beyond what you'd think a puny hobby site would yield. Things can get that weird!

So what does it take to be a successful affiliate marketer?
...do you have what it takes? is the carrot orange, juicy and big enough to get you through the ups and downs to the top?

What motivates you?

 

gamiziuk




msg:541013
 8:56 am on Mar 15, 2005 (gmt 0)

...I would find a certain satisfaction/sense of success in being a one man show in a basement/beach in the bahamas...

[SLIGHTLY OT]
Take it from someone who lived through *3* hurricanes last year.

You don't really want to live in the Bahamas or anyplace that's an isolated island in the Caribbean. When the hurricanes came, at least I could hightail it inland to higher ground in Florida. The unlucky people out in the Caribbean had no place to run to.

brightspark




msg:541014
 10:00 am on Mar 15, 2005 (gmt 0)

What does it take to be a successful affiliate marketer? ...do you have what it takes?

I'm about to find out.... just handed in my notice for my 9-5 job to concentrate on AM full time. So far I've been a successful amateur, and now its time to make the step up.

Chances are that the 9-5 will be replaced by 8am to 10pm, but I will work on my terms, when and wherever I want, and without the corporate b-s to stifle creativity.

HUGE thanks to everyone that contributes to this forum for changing my life! Just hope I can put something back in now.

wnshops




msg:541015
 2:00 pm on Mar 15, 2005 (gmt 0)

I have my own plan. I need to build a church and it's cost $500.000.Why because I am cancer survival and I promise the man above.I hope he will help me thru AM.This is the only way help me to get this amount or win a lottery ticket. I don't ask for donations. It's me and God.
Please wish me luck.

siteseo




msg:541016
 11:25 pm on Mar 15, 2005 (gmt 0)

rfung - it's a documented fact that the majority of people who win over $1 million in a lottery are bankrupt within a year. They're idiots (wnshops - not directed at you :-). Money doesn't change you - it reveals who you really are.

I agree that many who work 9-5 jobs hate their job and would love to work for themselves, but most of them would fail if they ever did so, because it takes a high degree of discipline.

Your perspective on the working world is somewhat different than, say, a 42 year-old with a wife, 2.5 kids, a dog and a mortgage. He may learn to be content where he's at because of necessity.

I'm young, single, and love my full-time gig, but I also work on the side to develop multiple, residual income streams through various business channels. Not because I hate my job and want to leave, but because I choose not to assume I'll always HAVE a great job. I believe in having something to fall back on. Would I quit my job if I was making $20,000 per month from my other businesses? Maybe. Then again, maybe not...

eyeinthesky




msg:541017
 1:24 am on Mar 16, 2005 (gmt 0)

Diversify within AM: multiple sites, multiple merchants, and all that.

Diversify offline: real estate, financial markets, buy/create businesses that other people can run for you.

I think there is a risk in everything, including diversification.

Why be a Jack of all trades and master of none? Isn't it better to an expert in your chosen field?

For eg, in medicine, the specialist doctor earns lots more than a GP.

I know not everyone can be a Google but what's your take diversification vs specialization?

cagey1




msg:541018
 3:27 am on Mar 16, 2005 (gmt 0)

I have my own plan. I need to build a church and it's cost $500.000.Why because I am cancer survival and I promise the man above.

eh eh - I know the feeling - sometimes He calls your bluff.

Procyon




msg:541019
 7:35 am on Mar 16, 2005 (gmt 0)

Why be a Jack of all trades and master of none? Isn't it better to an expert in your chosen field?

Absolutely. Specialise. :)

When I say diversify, I don't mean to say you need to become an expert in each area. That's what advisors and a team are for. Problem being, of course, that you need to find a great team. That can be difficult. My chosen "field" if you like, is buying and creating assets.

I tend to be more concerned with where I'm going financially, rather than the vehicle I'm using to get there (it changes). So, in my case, I'm concerned with specialising in "creating cashflow" rather than specialising in "Pet Care" or whatever it might be. There are many, many vehicles I can use to create cashflow, but I never expect to be an expert it ALL of them.

I hope that made some sort of sense. :)

1Lit




msg:541020
 12:40 pm on Mar 16, 2005 (gmt 0)

The fact that you put in a disproportionately low amount of work for the money you make

Don't think it's any easier running a business online than offline any more. Used to be the case, but with the plethora of, for instance, scumware, ad-blocking, spam filtering etc, the simplest of tasks - doing a mailing to ones customers - has become extremely time consuming. Takes a real genius and LOTS of work to get into the top five of Google for popular search terms, so no it 'aint an easy profession.

MovingOnUp




msg:541021
 2:44 pm on Mar 16, 2005 (gmt 0)

Don't think it's any easier running a business online than offline any more.

Oh, but it is. Far easier. With most offline businesses, you have to worry about employees, inventory, and a horde of other issues that you can avoid with an online business. Also, you can reach a lot more people much easier with an online business. Offline businesses are very limited by their location. Someone usually has to be there when an offline business is open. An online business is always open whether you're online or not.

There are new challenges that didn't exist several years ago, but it's still far easier than an offline business.

Chef_Brian




msg:541022
 3:14 am on Mar 17, 2005 (gmt 0)

Passion.... drive.... you need to enjoy the work, I like to think of it as a game or sorts. An understanding of basic search, nothing fancy, no complex scripts .... just need to know what people are searching for and give it to them.

Give people what they want it becomes easier .... also the ability to evolve and continue to learn new skills and inprove on how you work day to day.

Cheers,

Brian J

GuitarZan




msg:541023
 3:23 am on Mar 17, 2005 (gmt 0)

Hey,

I will chime in here. These points may seem obvious, but they are true.

- Hard Work (Most of the time - At least to get there)

- Persistance

- Ability to learn from your mistakes

Apply those principles to just about anything and you will succeed.

All the Best,

C.K.

rfung




msg:541024
 5:54 am on Mar 17, 2005 (gmt 0)

Passion.... drive.... you need to enjoy the work, I like to think of it as a game or sorts. An understanding of basic search, nothing fancy, no complex scripts .... just need to know what people are searching for and give it to them.

I don't know how to research to find out what people want, but I know how to do complex scripts :)

Just to show the many ways one can succeed in this game.

MovingOnUp




msg:541025
 12:36 pm on Mar 17, 2005 (gmt 0)

I don't know how to research to find out what people want, but I know how to do complex scripts :)

Just to show the many ways one can succeed in this game.

That's so very true.

I've seen successful affiliate marketers who use only PPC. I've seen successful affiliate marketers who never use PPC. I think it makes sense to use PPC for any site if your net earnings per visitor is over 5 cents. I think PPC direct to merchants can be a highly profitable area, but that it doesn't have as much long-term potential as a well-built site.

I've seen successful affiliate marketers who have great technical skills. I've seen successful affiliate marketers who have no technical skills. I think technical skills can give you many more options.

I've seen successful affiliate marketers who build content-rich sites. I've seen successful affiliate marketers who build sites with virtually no content. I think useful content is good, but that filler content is a waste of time.

I've seen successful affiliate marketers who have great people skills. I've seen successful affiliate marketers who are rude and offensive. I think it helps to be friendly.

I've seen successful affiliate marketers who use link exchanges as an integral part of their sites. I've seen successful affiliate marketers who never exchange links. I don't think links exchanges are necessary. If you have a good site, many people will link to it.

I've seen successful affiliate marketers who use datafeeds extensively. I've seen successful affiliate marketers who never use datafeeds. I think datafeeds can be very useful if used properly. They can be the quickest way to earn a lot of money, and they can also be the quickest way to most of your traffic.

I've seen successful affiliate marketers who build a single large site. I've seen successful affiliate marketers who build lots of small sites. I lean towards a few sites. With one site, all your eggs are in one basket. With tons of sites, you won't be a master of anything. I think you should build a site where you can be an authority on the niche. Once that's done, build another one. You can't be an authority in a day, a week, or even a month. It takes time and work.

I've seen successful affiliate marketers who rely almost completely on SEO. I've seen successful affiliate marketers who completely ignore SEO. I think SEO should always be considered (especially with titles, navigation, structure, keywords in URL's, etc.) but that user functionality should be the primary focus.

chris surfrider




msg:541026
 12:42 am on Mar 21, 2005 (gmt 0)

Hi everyone, I'm new to the forum.

I'm a very new AM/Advertising Sales webmaster. I have one main niche site and a few more on the way. I have found this thread very encouraging... it's good to see that people actually CAN make a decent living in AM, even in 2005.

I think one somebody's post in this topic read something like "Think Harder, don't Work Harder" or something to that effect. That is very true. Even from my limited experience, I know that by thinking things through, exploring, researching and asking questions you can save yourself literally months of working 15 hour days on your own.

I hope I also get to the point one day where I can truly begin to see things starting to pay off. It is ALOT of work - moreso a learning curve, actually - but I still think its worth it.

Sure beats flipping burgers at least.

-Chris

chrisnrae




msg:541027
 11:29 pm on Mar 21, 2005 (gmt 0)

>>>42 year-old with a wife, 2.5 kids, a dog and a mortgage

Those "type" of circumstances have nothing to do with it. There are plenty of single people with no responsibility who get content with the "security" of a job. I'm a single mom of three with a mortgage and have been full time AM for several years now. It's not about the circumstances of the individual, but rather their mindset.

Some people are made happy and secure by pensions and company provided health insurance. Others are happy and secure knowing that they control their level of success in life. To each his own. But IMHO, you can't "classify" someone as being one or the other by their circumstances in life.

>>>what does it take?

The love of the game. No matter how you choose to do it (site types, seo methods, etc), it involves persistence and a lot of willingness to learn. Also, the ability to learn new "facts" and dump old ones from your brain when required. Thinking outside the box is a big plus as well.

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