15 Things You Didn’t Know About Affiliate Marketing

9 January 2021

Here’s a 15-Point Fact Sheet on One of the Most Effective Forms of Modern Day Marketing

Welcome back Aluxers. We’re going to start with a question. Do you want to make $1000 a day from the comfort of your living room? And another question — would you also like some RBG lights for your pink unicorn you’re riding to work every day because you’re living in a fairyland? Aluxers, you’ve been asking us countless times about affiliate marketing, so here it is.

In this article we’ll be talking about what exactly to expect from affiliate marketing. The legit side of it, and the not-so-legit side. And what your chances are of losing all your time and money.

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With that taken care of, let’s get started.


Affiliate Marketing Is a Legit Marketing Strategy but That Doesn’t Mean the Schemes People Are Trying to Sell You Are Legit

In fact, far from it. If somebody’s putting ads on the internet about what a goldmine it is, see that as a sign with the word ‘scam’ written in big red letters.

Let’s look at what affiliate marketing looks like done right. It could be somebody who runs a successful blog, website or YouTube channel, providing quality content about something they actually know something about. It could be anything from snowboarding to gardening to personal finance.

On that blog, site or channel, they’ve placed links to products or services they’re recommending, that have a natural connection with the content they’re providing. In the examples we just gave, that might be snowboards, gardening equipment or personal finance apps. For each purchase anyone makes through those links, the affiliate gets paid a fee.

Notice how they’re providing quality content — and not spamming you with promises they’ll make you a millionaire? Yep, that’s what legit affiliate marketing looks like.


It Is a Multi-Million-Dollar Business but That Doesn’t Mean It’s Easy 

In fact, it’s worth around $12 billion a year, and it accounts for 15% of all digital media revenue. Recently that’s been growing by 10% a year, and it’s set to keep on doing that.

There are plenty of examples of reputable websites, blogs YouTube channels that provide valuable content, offer value and help people make informed decisions — and send visitors to various offers. But just because it makes a lot of money, doesn’t mean it’s easy…


It Takes a Lot of Hard Work and Time

If you’re still thinking of affiliate marketing as a get rich quick scheme stop believing what the scammers are telling you. And start thinking of is as more of a “bust your ass working for a year before you see any income at all” scheme.

And the thing you’re going to be busting your ass on is creating that quality content we talked about, and building it up over a period of time. And building a community of people who are interested in what you have to say, trust you, and keep on coming back to your site.

If you do it right, after a few months or a year, you could well see the money start coming in. But remember, that doesn’t mean there’s any guarantee. So, when you see anyone saying you can make a thousand dollars overnight — there’s no way that’s going to happen.

Hard work always pays off, but nobody said it’s going to be the fair amount. There are numerous situations when it is actually a ripoff. Check out 15 Reasons Why Working Hard Is Dumb.


Over 90% of Affiliates Never Make Any Money and Most Quit in the First 3 Months

There isn’t any hard data on why they quit, but we’d be happy to take a bet on it. And we think it’s safe to say that a lot of them saw it as a get-rich-quick scheme and gave up when they found out it was tougher, and slower than they thought.

One thing on the plus side, affiliates who last a year have a 90% success rate. That also means that if you’re not making any money in 12 months, you’re doing something wrong. As experienced affiliate marketers say, it’s the kind of business where it takes six months to get from zero to a hundred dollars — but if you’re good at it, just one month to go from 100 to 1000.


Most Affiliate Marketers Are Broke and That’s Why They Start Scamming Wannabe Affiliate Marketers

Don’t get us wrong. There are affiliate marketers out there making good money in a legit way. More about them soon. But there’s a load more who are broke. And when marketers can’t sell the product, they start thinking of other ways to make money. And one way is to start selling the dream instead. And there are a few ways they do this. One of those way is …


Expansive Strategy Guides They’re Almost Certainly a Scam

Yep, we’re talking about way overpriced guides that lay out strategies, promising they’ll teach you their hidden secrets, and have you up to your eyeballs in cash in a matter of weeks.

Remember, for these so-called affiliate marketers, that guide is their main source of income. Most of the time, they were written by people who failed at exactly what they’re claiming to be teaching.

Do you really want to be buying a strategy guide of somebody like that? And it goes without saying, that in that strategy guide they completely forget to mention the negative side of affiliate marketing. Like how much work and time it takes.


If It’s a Pay-to-Join Program There’s Probably a Scammer Behind It

Besides the worthless courses, scammers in the world of affiliate marketing will create affiliate programs that you have to pay to join. Remember, credible affiliate networks like Amazon Affiliates, are free to join.

Think about it — why would you have to pay for it? When you join an affiliate program, you’re offering to market their products for them. If you make sales, you’ll get paid a commission, and everyone’s happy. If you don’t, you’ve wasted your time, but the person you’re trying to do their marketing for, won’t even care, or notice. So why should you have to pay to do that?

That’s why, when you get spammed with some affiliate marketing scheme you have to pay for the privilege of joining, because it’s sure to bring you so much cash — those alarm bells should start ringing.


If It’s a Real Affiliate Marketing Guru — They Won’t Be Spamming You

As we mentioned, there are people out there making a steady income from affiliate marketing, and in a few cases, something even better than a steady income. Like Pat Flynn, who makes over $50 000 a month and runs the Smart Passive Income Blog — where he’s happy to share some of his advice for free. He’s also a regular guest on well-known podcasts, and a quick google search will tell you he’s the real deal.

Let’s compare him to that so-called affiliate marketing guru who’s spamming you to sign up for an expensive but worthless mentoring programme? Well, try a google search for them, and see what comes up, if anything. Yep, they don’t seem like such a guru anymore.

Think about it — if they were that successful at affiliate marketing, and they had a few million dollar secrets up their sleeve that anybody could replicate — would they want to give their secrets away?


The Products Could Even Be Fake

Yep, there are networks of affiliate marketers getting you to sign up to their marketing networks, and then get you to sell products that don’t even exist. The fitness industry has seen a lot of these — people sign up to lose weight, but the products never arrive.

And as the affiliate marketer, you’re the one who ends up looking stupid. You’ve created a link to a product that doesn’t even exist, and somebody who’s visited your site has been scammed on it.

Now we’ve looked at how not to do affiliate marketing, let’s have a look at how to do it the right way.


Sell Products That You Know and Love

So, you sign up to some marketing scheme with some scammy affiliate marketers, who get you trying to sell something you don’t even care about, or even seen apart from on your browser. There’s quite a few reasons why that isn’t going to work out. Even if the product is legit, when you realize it takes a while for the dollars to start rolling in — you’re probably going to lose enthusiasm, and give up.

A much better approach — Choose something you know something about, and better still are passionate about, get blogging or vlogging about it. Create content people are going to want to watch, do reviews, talk about products that you use. And add affiliate links to them.

We’re not saying it’s going to be easy, but if it’s something you love, you’re much more likely to stick with it until you start to see those dollar signs.


Finding a Niche Helps a Lot

Just like all of the internet, the affiliate marketing landscape is so crowded. That means it’s really important to find something that will single you out, and not appear bottom of the pile of a million search results.

Sure, you love cat videos. Who doesn’t. If everybody’s into it, that means, it’s not a niche. You need something more specific — like vegan friendly footwear; Smartphone accessories for traveling content creators; psychedelic home décor for small apartments; Smart appliances under $100. Get the idea?

These are niches. Go for something specific and well defined – and something you’re interested in and use yourself. That will single you out from the crows, and help people find you when they’re searching.


Remember Even When Your Blog Is up and Running It Won’t Just Run Itself

So, you’ve worked your ass off for a year, and you’ve finally got a following. Now you can sit back and relax, and just watch that passive income flow in? Right? Wrong — things are just taking off. Now’s the time you’ve got to work extra hard and keep the momentum going.

The fact is, you’ve got to work on your site or channel daily, constantly adding new content, curating older content. Neglect it, and it will dry up way faster than the time it took you to build it up.


Think of Your Job as Providing Information — Not Selling Products

Of course, it’s not entirely true. Simply because you won’t make any money if you don’t sell products. But the best affiliate marketers take this approach, and the ones who have the greatest success are the ones who focus on providing great information.

What you’ve got to focus on is building up a community – setting yourself up as an authority in the field you’re blogging about — and adding affiliate links to products that you use, and that you can genuinely recommend. Old school hard sales pitches for products you’ve never even seen, apart form on your browser — you might get a few sales, but probably not repeat ones. That’s an approach you should leave to the scammers.


You Can Use It as an Additional Revenue Source

So, it takes a long time to get sales through affiliate marketing. That’s why you might want to make it one of several revenue sources — and perhaps not even the main one.

If you’re going down the line of community building, through there are several other revenue sources you can look at.

Like, if you have a successful YouTube channel, you can also be bringing in revenue by views, as well as the affiliate links. You can monetize your site with paid content alongside the free stuff. Or because you’re an authority that people listen to in the area you blog about, you can design courses. And you can make those your main source of income, and the affiliate marketing an extra source.


Remember It Is a Legit Business but Do Your Homework Before Getting Involved

Know the realities before you get into affiliate marketing. That way, you’ll avoid falling for scams. And even if you’re doing it in a legit way, you’ll avoid wasting time and money before you decided it isn’t for you and give up. Believe us, we’re not trying to put you off it. Just be aware of what it involves, and learn the right ways of doing it.

And if it’s a get rich quick scheme you’re looking for, let’s be honest — you’ve probably got better chances playing the lottery.


Now you have an idea of what affiliate marketing is all about, do you think it’s for you?