Here are the four main activities you would be doing as an affiliate marketer:
Designing and setting up sites
Promoting your sites
Analyzing keywords and other data
If any one of those things sends up a red flag for you, don’t stop reading just yet! We’ll talk about these things in more detail as well as consider ways you could outsource things you feel you do not do well.
Activity #1: Designing and setting up sites This scares some people. Even some who have been using the Internet for years and years feel like they could never learn how to make a web site. After all, it looks so complicated! Surely it must be really, really super hard, and they’re too old/ slow/ dumb/ technologically impaired to learn it. This is not the case for most people.
My mom is like this. She insists she could never even learn how to turn a computer on. I ask her, Mom, do you know how to turn the TV on? She says yes. I say, Then you know how to turn a computer on. Press the “ON” button!!!! That’s it!!!! I’d like to end this anecdote by telling you that Mom is now happily raking in big bucks as an affiliate marketer, but it would be a lie. She has chosen to remain blissfully ignorant as to computers.
(If I’m being honest, there are moments when I envy her!) I’m going to tell you a secret, and it’s going to be really shocking. You might never look at a web site the same way again. Prepare yourself. I mean it; get ready to be blown away…
Making web sites is so easy, a caveman can do it. (No offense, cavemen; I wouldn’t make fun of you like those mean insurance people do.) You don’t believe me, do you? Don’t get me wrong: There are approximately 86,417 facets of web development that you will never learn— they’re hard, they involve scary-looking columns of code, and only uber-geeks living in their parents’ basement rocking their Battlestar Galactica T-shirts can understand them.
But that’s okay. All you have to be able to do to create a web site is follow a few simple instructions, mostly consisting of clicking on buttons helpfully labeled for your convenience. The days when you had to learn to use complicated software in order to build a site are long gone; it’s so easy now that it’s like magic. (Psst… I’d keep that info on the down low, though, if I were you; that way you can amaze your friends and family
family with your supercool cyber skills. And here they thought you’d never amount to much!) I’m not saying that there aren’t a few aspects of the process that you might struggle with; it’s not all child’s play. But if you are capable of following instructions and have half as many brains as your average Hollywood starlet, you’re good to go.
Activity #2: Writing content for your site Uh-oh. Writing. That immediately brings to mind old Mrs. Ranklebottom, that purse-lipped and slightly menacing English teacher in 7th grade, the one who forced you to put all those jumbled words in your head in some sort of coherent order on ruled paper every week and seemed to delight in making huge red checkmarks right over your description of how you and Sally Snotnose scared your little brother so bad he had an “accident.” (Mrs. Ranklebottom would no doubt take issue with the very, very long sentence you just read.) Well, fear not, friend-of-Sally-Snotnose, it’s not so bad. For one thing, no one will be grading your work. Don’t get me wrong, it’s important to take care that what you write for your site be reasonably
Activity #3: Promoting your sites This part can be tedious at times but it can also be a lot of fun. When you create an affiliate marketing web site, it’s not enough to just build the site and wait for visitors. Just because a site is on the “World Wide Web” doesn’t mean anyone will know it’s there unless you put the word out. Site promotion can take many forms, but some of the most common methods include creating links to your sites on other sites (called backlinks), writing and distributing articles, and networking with other people, both other webmasters and potential visitors to your site. Much of the backlinking process is a matter of searching for related sites to get links from, submitting articles to directories or blogs, and contacting other webmasters. So it’s not the most exciting part of AM, although some enjoy that kind of research.
If that’s that’s you, you’re golden! You might think working at home on the computer can be lonely, and I suppose it can, but as you form working relationships with other marketers and with your customers, it can be fun and help to make up for any in-person interaction you might miss having with co-workers. (Although you probably won’t miss being overpowered by the gallons of perfume wafting over from the next cubicle.)
Activity #4: Analyzing and choosing keywords as well as tracking data Keyword research is essential if you want to build a successful web site. In simple terms, this just means gathering a list of words and phrases relating to your subject that will serve as a jumping off point for your content.
Of course, as you build your online “empire,” you’re going to want to keep track of what works,
what doesn’t, what pays, what doesn’t, so you can duplicate the good stuff and stop wasting time on the not-so-good stuff. All this means is that you will go to your favorite data-tracking web sites, look at the colorful pie charts and graphs, and figure out what needs to be changed or what needs to be done on a grander scale.
These analytics sites are not hard to understand; everything is broken down for you and displayed clearly. Besides, there are just a few crucial pieces of data you’ll want to know; it’s not like you’ll be buried under an 8-foot stack of paper with lots of tiny 35-digit numbers on it. (At least not until tax time!)
As you can see, these things are not as scary as they may first appear. And if by chance you thought, Hey! That’s right up my alley! then you’re really ahead of the game, and you’ll love affiliate marketing. If it sounds pretty good but it stopped just short of your alley, don’t worry, you can learn how to do it!
Author: David Leduc