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Numbers - top aff on a travel related program I work with (an individual, NOT a huge portal) makes $120,000 plus per month.
The huge portals and networks make millions monthly, but these are mainly corporations for whom the aff income is just another way of icing an already huge cake.
The average aff marketer in the UK makes somewhat less, from what I have learned over the years, as does his/her stateside colleagues, but of course I can't claim to have exhaustive research.
It's also a fact that most really high earners are super secretive, and most low earners are super embarassed, so the total lack of decently informative responses is par for the course!
There are people (mom/pop not big companies ) making from low 3 digits to 7 digits per month in AM ...In most of the lucurative programs (finance/pharm/gambling/travel) the top affiliates make more than 100k from that one program ...I think this will give a rough idea of the potential of the business .
If you starting and are looking to set a goal i will say 10k/month is a practical and attainable goal if you are willing to put the work!
As a businessman, NEVER be just satisfied.
If "getting rich" or money is of little concern to you however, more power to ya!
Sometimes, this isn't a priority for people. I'll take a job anyday I like for less money over the one that I don't like that pays more.
If you are making enough to be happy, then why work for more? If money makes you happy, then great, work more, make more money. But different people have different things that make them happy.
Didn't we do this a hundred times already in the $100 a day thread? I'm sure I can remember someone explaining how guys that restore old cars were happier than I was, etc..... yawn..............
Oh but Michael, restoring old cars is so much fun, and worth the money for busting their a**! Oh boy, how can someone actually say that with truth, as compared to doing affiliate marketing and have the potential to make twice as much money in half the time, with less physical work?
PS: Just to let some people know, I can relate to both fields, so I can actually say what's better, or worse.
I was responding to wyweb, who first said he does not take his situation for granted and knows it may come to an end, but then said he would not consider working more than 2 hours to prevent the "situation" from ending. I was actually just curious as it seemed like an odd view, that's all...When I first starting "wearing the bathrobe", I would have done ANYTHING to prevent going back to employee status and I had a high paying job!
It is a strange group, affiliate marketers. Many of my good friends and myself, are driven by their laziness in a way. It's like we must create a system that will allow us to loaf around and vacation all the time. This goal for automation and semi-passive income is what drives me. OTOH, we could all make a lot more money if we didn't goof off so much. :)
I think that aff marketing is like other sales positions. Asking what an marketers makes is like asking what sales people make. Ranges anywhere from nothing to a whole lot. My guess is that most are closer to nothing :)
I can see us now at pubcon, pointing at people and asking each other "Does he wear the bathrobe?". We could even start a "Golden Bathrobe Club" for top affiliates, where we all sit in corners at various webmaster social events looking like a group of Muhummad Ali lookalikes in our Golden Robes.
Gotta run, I'm going to beat mfishy to register www.golden-bathrobe-club.com!
And wyweb, mfishy's right. We didn't get to where we are today on 2 hours a day. You have to work your nuts off to start with whilst you're learning. If you want to just work two hours per day, it takes a little foundation building to get there. Until you have enough cash to sit back and relax, don't stop trying. If you can sit around all day in your PJ's when there's less than enough coming in, you have a weird conscience.
By all means keep a balance, but all of the really successful people here will tell you that the learning curve part of their aff marketing career was an expensive, frustrating and nerve racking time. It's only once you've learnt from your mistakes and have more than enough stuff working for you to pay your bills and then some that you can afford to put in less time.
And yes, like mfishy I agree that the reason it's so much fun is precisely because you CAN make money and goof off, so your quality of life improves immeasurably. But this is the relaxing bit that only comes after the effort and learning.
If someone told you that the best way to make a fortune was to put in as little effort as possible you might think they were a bit odd. Right now, wyweb, you're making that very same statement.