Affiliate marketing jobs go far beyond being a “publisher” or traffic generator.
There is a vast array of jobs in the affiliate marketing industry that range from entry level all the way to the top. No matter what your educational background or skill set is, there is probably a position in this industry that you’d be stoked to work in.
There are plenty of reasons why working in the affiliate marketing industry is awesome. Here’s just a few:
- You’re at Ground Zero: Working in this industry exposes you to all of the latest traffic generation methods, trends, and news. It allows you to be an early adopter.
- It’s Fun: For the most part, affiliate marketing is a fun industry to be in. There’s always events (parties) to attend for networking (partying). Workplaces are usually more casual and laid back as well (I wore a backwards hat and shorts/jeans to work for 6+ years).
- Surround Yourself with the Brightest: Affiliates and affiliate marketing companies are a haven for some of the smartest and most driven tech and business professionals out there.
Where Do You Fit In?
While all of those reasons make working in the affiliate marketing industry very appealing, you still need to make sure a potential job fits your goals and strengths. It shouldn't make you wish for a planet-ending asteroid strike during your Monday morning commute.
Here’s a quick breakdown of some of the affiliate marketing jobs commonly available:
Obviously, one of the key roles inside this industry is being an affiliate.
There are many advantages to steering your new career path this direction:
- You are your own boss.
- Your results are directly tied to your work and creativity.
- Working from home.
- Flexible hours.
However, there are many pitfalls too:
- No “guaranteed” pay check.
- No benefits (health insurance).
- Capital needed to make a living and ride out down turns.
- High Risk: You could work hard, invest your money in traffic generation and still have poor results.
- Your entire livelihood is tied to companies and elements you can’t control, like Facebook/Google ad policies, changing algorithms, expiring affiliate offers, companies refusing payment and so on.
It’s not for everyone, but there are plenty of rewards for those willing to take on the challenge!
Affiliate Marketing Companies/Networks
If you’re looking to work in this space but aren’t ready to make the leap to full-time affiliate yet, then working at an affiliate marketing network is the next best thing.
You get all of the advantages of a standard corporate gig (insurance, benefits, break room coffee) and get to be in the mix with all of the latest affiliate comings and goings. You can see what’s working, what’s not, who is really killing it out there and who is full of hot air.
There are tons of different positions at affiliate marketing networks, including:
Standard Support/Administrative Positions
These companies might be in a very unique space but they have most of the same needs as other companies do. That means people in these fields can usually get a foot in the door:
- Human Resources
If you’re thinking about a career in affiliate marketing and have previous experience in those fields, you can get a better idea of what the sausage factory looks like and decide later if you still want to eat that bratwurst.
In addition, it’s not uncommon for these companies to have dedicated event managers that handle the logistics and execution of event appearances like summits, conferences and other events where affiliate marketers gather.
These nice folks are the front line, hanging out in the trenches with the affiliates.
They make sure campaigns are running well, they're getting the volume they expect and that everybody is playing by the rules. Affiliate managers find traffic generators, help them find the right offers and do everything they can to help affiliates succeed.
The affiliates wouldn’t have offers and campaigns to run if it weren’t for the business development folks.
These positions have more of a sales component, as you’ll be spending your time prospecting new clients, ensuring budgets continue or increase and looking after your client list.
Some businesses separate the operations part of business development roles with positions such as Account Managers who are responsible for the day-to-day operations. This frees the “salesperson” to do their thing without having to worry about contracts, order forms and all of that stuff.
If you’re looking to get into the sales or business development side of this line of work then starting as an account manager is the way to go.
Affiliate marketing companies are always in need of creative professionals.
Those who have experience or interest in graphic and web design can usually find a role here given the number of banners, landing pages and other special pieces need to be created on a daily basis.
Internal Online Marketers
Often affiliate marketing companies will want to test offers internally to see how they perform and to help provide their affiliates with best practices, tips and so on. They also have their own marketing needs to keep the feeding the fire with new advertisers and affiliates.
That is where specialists in SEO, PPC, social media and other traffic generation methods are needed.
Depending on the complexity and size of back-end systems like count engines, databases and other internal software platforms used, often these companies will hire their own in house group of programmers, DBAs and coders.
Someone has to lead all of this, right? How else are you going to know to turn in your TPS reports unless you have a couple of Vice Presidents telling you so?
And remember, Friday is Hawaiian shirt day...
Outside of the actual affiliate marketing networks that make this whole world spin, there are positions available at merchants and advertisers that work with with the affiliate space.
Large online merchants might have a designated employee who serves as the contact for affiliate networks to give feedback on performance, push new offers and so on. If the company is large enough, it might even have an internal affiliate marketing team that recruits, monitors and work with affiliates directly.
Haven’t seen anything that blows your hair back yet?
Well, just like any industry there is a whole media niche that just covers the business of affiliate marketing. That means reporters, bloggers, content writers, audio/video professionals and more can all find a soft landing spot in the world of affiliate marketing.
Spread Your Wings, Baby Bird
The possibilities are truly endless when it comes to working in the affiliate marketing industry.
You can work in positions that any corporate office needs or in one that is very specific to affiliate marketing. There are plenty of opportunities to grow and learn in this industry.
One of the best things is that the skills and knowledge that are commonplace in the affiliate marketing industry are highly sought after by companies that have never even heard of affiliate marketing.
Lead generation, paid search, SEO and social media marketing are all elements of business you encounter on a daily basis in affiliate marketing, and ones that outside employers will fight each other for if and when you decide to make the move.
Trust me, I know! After spending six years in the affiliate space I was hired away by a group of auto dealerships to manage their digital marketing. My work in the affiliate world helped me have a holistic view of online marketing that others just couldn’t match.
Have you started your affiliate marketing job hunt yet? How have you leveraged your knowledge of online marketing to help you succeed in the affiliate marketing job market or within your current position?Let us know in the comment section.