Lean in close.
“I don’t know everything there is to know about the Internet.”
I know, I know…it’s probably an awful tactic to start off a blog with. But I have to come clean.
I am able to produce a few blogs per week and offer a lot of suggestions and insight, but there is still so much to learn. I have yet to make six figures from running a blog. Even worse, I don’t make millions of dollars every 3-seconds. I still work really hard for a living.
What am I doing wrong???
I hope you can sense some of my sarcasm. Truth is, much like everyone else in the digital marketing landscape, we always have our learning caps on. Every day we find a new tactic, tool, or method. Some of us dive really deep into a specific niche. Others tend to dabble with everything.
Over the years I became super consumed with web design and development and now I find myself really focusing on digital marketing.
And now I find myself very interested in passive income and affiliate marketing.
Affiliate Marketing Without Knowing It
I started a few blogs back up a couple of years ago. One blog was simply tracking what I learned each day. Another blog was a test blog to get used to WordPress 5.0. These blogs had no audience (with the exception of me). The only website I cared about getting an audience was this one.
We are moving on nearly a year and the website has generated some serious web impressions and traffic. I check Google Search Console daily to check on my organic traffic and am always baffled by some of the search results.
- A blog about Wrestling Podcaster Conrad Thompson gets hundreds of impressions weekly.
- I once talked about how Net Promoter Scores were calculated and now it’s a preferred result for NPS Formula
- My music review of the band Journey is constantly showing up for users when they search – “journey albums ranked”
- Not to mention – my fantasy football website portfolio has users from all over the country trying to learn how to make a fantasy football website.
These blogs were not for my intended audience – small business owners in the Ohio Valley looking for digital marketing. These were just blogs/pages I wrote for fun and/or promoting something I loved. Turns out I could probably throw some affiliate links on these and end up getting paid.
What is Affiliate Marketing and Why Haven’t I Been Doing It?
Affiliate marketing is a type of performance-based marketing in which a business rewards one or more affiliates for each visitor or customer brought by the affiliate’s own marketing efforts.The Always Wonderful Wikipedia – via Knowledge Panel Snippet
So you are telling me that if I throw a link on my page for Journey’s Infinity album and someone buys it, I can get money?
Yes – if you sign up and follow the process.
And yes, people make very good money from doing this. How much money? I went on a search to find the answers.
The Annoying Levels of Affiliate Marketing
I really try to be positive during my weekly recommendations. I tend to listen to a lot of podcasts on a topic before I finally send one out as a recommendation. There were lots of podcasts on Affiliate Marketing. There were lots of different personalities.
The Instagram Affiliate Marketer
I’m not saying this as a diss (but then again, maybe I am) – the picture-perfect, life is always done in with an Instagram filter blogger is super annoying to me. I know there is a market out there that likes every image and post, but can we take it down a few levels when talking about your “fans”?
I found several of these affiliate marketers and their podcasts. Not my cup of tea – or Starbucks.
Equally annoying to me is the guy that sleeps in, works for 5 minutes, and then goes and rides around in Lamborghini (yes, this was a statement made by one of the podcasts I sampled). Jealous? Of course I am – if it were real. Sorry, you might be making a great living from affiliate marketing but your 5-minutes per day is unrealistic.
I will move on to the next podcast that actually tells the full truth.
I’ve encountered this issue with several topics – but there always seem to be a few podcasts that are nothing but soundbites. The host talks about how they conquered a given topic and made tons of money but they don’t give you any real specifics. Most of us are not expecting them to go step-by-step, but it gets really annoying when they just rattle off blanket statements over and over.
“I wrote a blog that earned me $5,000 per month” – maybe you could give us some tips on how you manufactured this.
“All you need to do is find a gap in the marketplace and write great content” – wow, thanks for the great advice.
Wow – no wonder affiliate marketing has some negative connotation.
The Right Affiliate Marketer
FINALLY! After a few hours of torturous listening, I found two podcasts that did exactly what I wanted.
- Explain Affiliate Marketing and How to Start
- Give practical examples and tips on how to actually succeed
- Encourage realistic expectations and a roadmap to making money from affiliate marketing
It’s no surprise that Pat Flynn was one of the podcasters that I found and liked. His podcast on Affiliate Marketing was super helpful and rewarding. I even took him up on his offer and signed up for a newsletter all to get the goody PDF he promised. A few days later, he had me sign up for an iTunes affiliate marketing program. Soon I might actually make money on that Journey album recommendation!
Next was Your Affiliate Marketing Mentor with host Angela Davis. I went back and listened to episode 1 – “What is Affiliate Marketing?”. Honestly, can you get much better of a podcast to listen to for this topic?
The Premise of Your Affiliate Marketing Mentor
Since I rambled on for much of this blog, I will keep most of this short and sweet. Angela Davis was a perfect host that wasn’t trying to sell me on the fact that I can be a millionaire by next week. As detailed in her iTunes description:
I teach legit affiliate marketing strategies to help bloggers and content creators monetize their work, diversify their income, and ultimately increase their revenue.Your Affiliate Marketing Mentor on Apple Podcasts
I am not sure if she is currently producing podcasts, but I subscribed and will continue to go through her backlog as I try to create another form of income.
Why Did I Pick a Podcast about “Affiliate Marketing”?
Like I mentioned at the start of this blog, I don’t know everything about the Internet. I know that a lot of people make money from blogging and creating content. I’m not one of those people, yet. I like to blog and I like to create content. Most of my blogs are made for my enjoyment. Why not learn all there is to know about affiliate marketing and see if I can make some money.
Most of the podcasters were talking about search engine optimization and consistency. Both of these items are labeled in big bold font on my resume. I understand the value of analytics and research. If I need to find some low-hanging fruit to make topics of, I imagine my SEO background can help me move the front of the line. Not to mention, I have been publishing 1-2 blogs per week for years now. Why stop now?
The Podcast: “What is Affiliate Marketing?”
At this point, you might want to listen to a true professional that has a 19-episode (at the time of writing) series on Affiliate Marketing.