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Can Beginners Do Affiliate Marketing? (Depends)

Affiliate Lead Gen

Affiliate marketing’s awesome. It really is. But while there’s more opportunity for affiliates than ever before, there’s also never been more competition. And no, don’t worry, I’m not about to tell you affiliate marketing is dead. It isn’t. And it probably never will be, at least in our lifetime. But, what I wanna talk about today is, like where’s a beginner even start? Blogging? SEO? Facebook ads? Launch a YouTube channel? Try your luck with TikTok ads?

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Here’s the first thing I’ll say. Focus on learning skills not methods. Anyone can go to Amazon or ClickBank or ShareASale or wherever else and copy and paste an affiliate link all over the internet, right? And whether that’s done on Pinterest or a review blog or Instagram (or, again, wherever else) doesn’t matter as much as you might think. Especially since it’s so easy for any new affiliate to reverse engineer what’s working and come in and start copying you verbatim. Make sense?

So skills are what’s gonna set you apart. That’s what’s gonna separate the 1% of affiliates who make all the money from the 99% who make diddly squat. Trust me, the guy or gal raking in $200,000 a month in commissions doesn’t have all the answers or know all the methods; but they’ve put in the time and energy and focus to become world-class at whatever they’re doing. Maybe they can run YouTube ads like Steph Curry can shoot the deep three, ya know what I’m saying?

I see newbies caring way too much about platforms and hacks and shortcuts and secrets, instead of like, How can I become the best copywriter in my niche? What books do I need to read? Who are the juggernauts of online copywriting currently? Which courses do I need to take? Do I need a coach or a mentor? And most importantly, based on all that, what daily exercises should I be doing to get noticeably better in the shortest amount of time possible? See the difference in mindset?

Money Fan Affiliate

The other thing I’d recommend, and this sounds like common sense but I assure you it’s not, is go all-in on promoting a product you actually use and love. Shocking, I know, but you shouldn’t be eeny, meeny, miny, moe-ing products that just “pay the most.” Or that some stupid YouTuber told you he was crushing it with, right? Business has a weird way of working itself out like that. Just like if you never develop real skills, it’s damn near impossible to make good money (for a long time) as an affiliate if you’re not passionate about what you’re asking others to buy.

The more you can live it and breathe it and rave about it and provide undeniable proof (like, oh I don’t know, maybe using the damn thing every day?) that it’s made your life better, the easier it’ll be to convert traffic into sales. Right? Like that should be your marketing. Whether it’s articles or email drips or long-form videos or TikToks, a current and ongoing review or case study (more or less) for the product? Yeah, that’s the stuff that’s gonna get people to buy, and ensure they wanna buy from your link.

From here, it’s just repetition, consistency, having a long-term view, and not getting pulled off track by all the shiny stuff you see coming through your newsfeed every day. And no, that shouldn’t sound too simple because what I just told you was basically that you’re gonna have to do a lot of hard work for a really long time and be a really genuine person to make it as an affiliate marketer nowadays. And all the lazy idiots who wanna get rich quick are gonna fall by the wayside.

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Katie Smith: after reviewing thousands of courses and coaches and side hustles, here’s what I can’t stand about this industry.