Friday, December 14, 2007

Starter Tips for Online Affiliate Marketing

Starting out in a new field can be quite intimidating and daunting, particularly so for beginners in Internet Marketing. With a sea of competition, nerve wracking jargon, scamsters galore and rapid changes in the Internet world, it is easy to be overwhelmed and step back to the mundane regularities of daily work. But remember, by taking baby steps you can slowly and surely work your way to the top.
Making money online is very much like Public speaking filling you with nerves and trepidation. But as many experts would tell you, being nervous is not necessarily bad because it means you want to succeed. It is said that 'If you are in your comfort zone, you are not learning and if you are not learning you are not in your comfort zone.' It is true for Internet Marketing whether you are dabbling with Affiliate Marketing, Google Adsense, Google Adwords or trying to drive traffic to your website. Here are a few killer tips for starters in Affiliate Marketing.
Be a doctorate before becoming a master: In other words, be a specialist than a jack of all trades. There are many threads in affiliate marketing. Pick the thread that works best for you, instead of trying your hand in all. Trying too many things at one time will only result in failure and frustration that will only result in denting your confidence and money. First analyze yourself, your financial situation, your strengths and weaknesses. Ask yourself, how much time you have in hand, what do you like to write about and what would you be so passionate about that you will continue working your way despite failures and frustration. I cannot overemphasize on passion and loving what you do. Here is a simple trick, take your focus off money and zero in on a topic that you would just love to research and spend time on. That should give you a good starting point.
Scenario One: No money but lots of time
If you cannot afford to spend too much money, you have to take the hard route- writing articles, developing blogs, posting comments on forums and tapping into social networks to drive traffic to your website or your affiliate website.
Before you do that, you have to pick your stream and do some research to find if you have market for the product you are promoting. You don't want to do all the hard work only to realise that there isn't a market for your product. As a rule of thumb go for a market with heavy competition than little or no competition because a competitive market means that there is a lot for everyone.
A good place to start would be Clickbank which specializes in selling digital products. Create an account and look for products that might interest you. You don't need to have a website to start promoting clickbank products. Other popular affiliate program is Commission Junction where you will find a larger array of products. However you need to have a website before you can sign up with Commission Junction.
Scenario Two: Some money and no/lots of time
Setting up Pay Per Click campaigns could be a quick way to earn a few bucks. But there is also a big danger of quickly losing money if you don't know the tricks of the trade. Using Google Adwords to promote Affiliate products might be the best way to generate sales, but here are some of the common problems that newbies face. Why aren't my Ads appearing on the first page of the search results?, why is Google charging me so much for one click?, why do I have so many people clicking my Ads but not buying the product? Before you start working on these campaigns, you have to do a lot of research to know what you are doing will be giving you the best results. For best results, I recommend two things, one join, Wealthy Affiliate or buy Beating Google Adwords.The reason I recommend these programs is that these campaigns are very much like Credit Scores, so not having started a campaign is much better than being in a disastrous campaign because Google lowers your quality score and in the process charges you more per click than your competitors.
Another method to promote your Affiliate products is by having your own website and using your website to promote the products. But now comes the golden question, 'How do I drive traffic to my website?' You can write your own articles, outsource or hire ghost writers to produce content on the website. A cool tip would be advertise for writers in Craig's list because you can get a lot of people writing articles for you at a low cost and more importantly you get free publicity and traffic to your website. However you should be careful not to go about spamming for eventually your posting will be flagged or even deleted. Other ways of promoting Affiliate products is by writing reviews in Squidoo, Hubpages and usfreeads.
There are other threads of Affiliate Marketing by developing sales letters, posting videos, creating e-books, creating Squeeze pages with in-built opt in mailing lists and other powerful viral marketing techniques that enable you to reach a wider number of people. Having said that focusing on all these threads at one time is not the right way to go about Affiliate Marketing unless you are a pro and know what you are doing. First make sure that you have a very strong foundation before you start thinking of building a beautiful palace. So start working on your first doctorate thread in Affiliate Marketing and don't rest till you have mastered it. Remember, one thing at a time and that done well, is a very good rule as many can tell.

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