Affiliate marketing is a fantastic way to “try out” running your own business without having to actually start that business yourself. The products and programs are already there. You just have to pick one, join it,get to work and collect your payroll.
Some people use affiliate marketing to teach themselves how to build a business. Others simply want to earn some extra money on the side.Whatever the reason for joining an affiliate program, the first question new affiliates asks is always the same: How much can I earn, really?
The answer to this question depends on three very important but pretty simple factors:
How Much Money Do You Want to Make?
Do you want to simply earn some extra “mad” money so you can go to the movies every now and again? Or, also popular, are you hoping to earn a full-time income and eventually replace your current day job? This is important because it is going to determine the type of affiliate program you join and how much effort you put into it.
So, before you start searching out programs or printing business cards, ask yourself: What is my financial goal?
How Hard Are You Willing to Work?
This is the biggest and most important factor in the amount of money you bring in. If you are willing to work hard, you can take even a mediocre affiliate program and turn it into a profitable enterprise for yourself. Are you willing to put in hours every day building a website,contacting potential buyers, selling them on your product, delivering the product, following up, etc.? If you aren’t willing to do that work, you probably won’t earn as much as you hope to earn—especially if you want to earn a full-time income.
If you are willing and even excited to do that work, though,you could find yourself in business for yourself full time within a year. A great place to start is to check out the brands for the products you already use and love—do any of those companies have an affiliate program you can join?
The Affiliate Program Itself
This is where things get technical. There are thousands of affiliate programs out there. How do you know which one is right for you?
Do the research before you join any program. Check out the company itself. Look it up in the Better Business Bureau. Make sure it has actual physical offices (if there is no phone number or street address, runaway). Find other affiliates for the program and ask what they think of the system.Ask how reliable the commissions and paychecks are. Make sure the program is a straightforward affiliate program and not an MLM scheme.
Finally, understand that it is going to take time to get used to the system and really start earning. Making thousands in a week is as rare as being discovered by a Hollywood director while in line at Starbucks and getting cast in his next major blockbuster. It takes time and effort. Stick with it and you will get there.
ErinSteiner writes, blogs, and vlogs for a living and loves helping affiliate marketers figure out how to make more money and find more satisfaction with their projects.
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