How To Start Affiliate Marketing: AN INDEPTH GUIDE FROM A FULL TIME AFFILIATE!

Howdy folks, John Koch here. Thanks for stopping by to check out my guide on How to Start Affiliate marketing. 

Your time is valuable, so I’ll get right to the point. I’ll give you my most practical advice about where to start affiliate marketing if I was to start all over again today.

90% of people start in the wrong place when trying affiliate marketing. They think with their monkey brain instead of their money brain.

Monkey brains make the mistake of focusing on affiliate programs to promote. Money brains laser focus on finding a person to model. 

I’ll tell you the one person I would follow if I was to start all over again. I’ll also give you one alternative idea. I’ll also tell you what people to avoid. 

Short on time? My number #1 of 3 recommendations is mentor David Sharpe, from Legendary Marketer. Start by taking his 15-Day Online Business Builder Challenge. His challenge, coaching and tight-knit club are the real deal.


Revolist Readers: ClickFunnels is offering our readers an EXCLUSIVE OFFER for a limited time. Click here for this special offer!

How To Start Affiliate Marketing

If you want to here my other recommendations, keep on reading. Even if you don't follow my recommendations, at least do your best to avoid thinking with a monkey brain versus a money brain.

where-to-get-started-with-affiliate-marketing

I think earning $1,000 per month in 90 days is a reasonable goal.

It’s that simple. It’s exactly what I did on October 4th, 2018. I found a mentor and then started promoting an affiliate program. Here’s a screenshot of my goals that I created after I found my mentor.

Although I haven't achieved it yet, $40,000 MRR (monthly recurring revenue) is still a goal of mine. You'll see that number at the top of the spreadsheet shown below.

Day 478 is something that automatically counts up in my spreadsheet so that I know how many days it's been since I started. I would check things off as accomplished them. The rest of the spreadsheet is pretty self explanatory.

my-affiliate-marketing-goals-getting-started

I stared at my goals spreadsheet everyday to keep myself motivated & focused.

Guys, although I have been helping people market online for 18 years, this was my first attempt at affiliate marketing. My monkey brain would have thought that I was smart enough to figure it out. My money brain didn’t want to waste time and knew I needed a mentor to accelerate my success.

I focused on finding one legit person to teach me affiliate marketing and then promoted the affiliate program they recommend. I MUTED all the other "gurus" and "shinny objects" for one year.

My mentor costed me $3,600 for one year, but I quickly learned what I needed to make my money back. This is how much I have earned, as of January, 30th 2020, for the main affiliate program I promote.

my-affiliate-marketing-program-earnings

This is just one affiliate program I focused on. I know it sounds unbelievable, but that's the power of finding the right person and program to model.

I’m not going to mention my mentor because people and programs change with time. What I did won’t work for you right now so I need to make a different recommendation.

If I were to start all over again today, here is the person I would follow:

#1 David Sharpe from Legendary Marketing

#2 Russel Brunson from ClickFunnels

#3 High Risk / High Reward Opportunities

Stay away from get rich quick stuff until you build a proper affiliate marketing foundation. After you are making at least $1,000 per month consistency, then you can consider  gambling / experimenting with high risk/high reward opportunities like Commission Hero. These types of opportunities come and go because they typically only work for short period of time before they're too saturated. I have nothing against trying get rick quick stuff if you can afford it because it's fun. But you need to build out stable revenue streams first.

Of the three opportunities mentioned above, the first place I would start if I was an affiliate marketer is taking the 15-day online business challenge with legendary marketer. Legendary marketer has solid affiliate marketing teaching. They teach you about high income skills and help you avoid time wasters. In addition, they have a very tight-knit online and offline community. So if I was just starting out online I would go all in on legendary marketer... at least for the next year. Make it a goal to win Legendary's "Super Bowl like" ring.

Is affiliate marketing hard?

In the recent past, the world’s economy has been experiencing a sudden rise. Also, the cost of living has continued to skyrocket. Unfortunately, people’s earnings have remained constant. As a result, many people, if not all, are left struggling to make ends meet. The harsh living conditions have seen people improvise ways to boost their income.

Today, most people have a side hustle to help supplement their income. Some end up working day and night to meet the ever-growing needs. Thankfully, there is the internet and which has created thousands of opportunities through which people can make money. The good thing about working online is that it’s flexible. Therefore, you can work online at the comfort of your home and after dealing with your day job. 

There are various ways to earn money online. Some methods are real, while others are loopholes to steal your hard-earned income. If you’re a keen observer of what’s going on in the internet world, you’ve probably heard about affiliate marketing. Affiliate marketing is among the best ways through which people have earned a massive amount of money without putting in much work. 

What is affiliate marketing? 

As the name suggests, affiliate marketing is a form of advertising in which a company pays a third-party publisher or blogger to direct traffic towards their products or services. As an affiliate, you enter into some sought of an agreement with a company to market their services or products. In return, the company pays you commission for traffic that leads to sales.

Affiliate marketing is a simple way of earning an extra income because it doesn’t ask for much investment. Besides, this side hustle doesn’t ask for your full-time presence. However, you will be needed to put in some little work to come up with a working plan. The world of affiliate marketing is ever-evolving. Therefore, you need to have some skills to win a share of the industry. Without saying much, here is a step-by-step guide on how to start affiliate marketing.

Select a niche

By now, you’ve probably come across affiliate marketers who have confessed to making millions through affiliate marketing. How do I start? It is a question that you will find most people asking. The first and most crucial step when starting as an affiliate marketer is choosing a niche or area of specialization. 

From a developer’s point of view, it’s usually challenging to create a site without knowing what it’s about or the target audience. Choosing a niche can be an overwhelming task because there are many areas to choose. When selecting an area of specialization, it’s advisable to go with one that you’re passionate. 

Working in a niche that you’re passionate about makes your work as an affiliate marker easy. The ease of working is because you will have more energy to deal with the workload. As an affiliate marketer, research is vital. Therefore, picking a field, you’re passionate about ensures a smooth operation because you’ll be looking forward to quenching your curiosity. 

Also, when choosing a niche to specialize in, you can consider the money factor. After all, you’re joining affiliate marketing to earn some cash. Therefore, you must find if your niche is profitable or not. The truth is that some niche is profitable than others. Therefore, always find an area that promises good returns.

But, you must be cautious when dealing with these profitable niches as they tend to be overcrowded. According to successful affiliates, always check to confirm if there is space left for you in the lucrative niche. By doing so, it will be easy to join the bandwagon without any surprises.

Research about the affiliate programs and products

Once you’re done with deciding the niche, your next move should be to research the programs and products to promote. This step isn’t usually tricky because most people already have an idea of the products or services they wish to promote. The idea here is to dig deeper to understand everything about the products you intend to develop.

Selecting an affiliate program to work with is usually a significant step as it’s what determines where your income will come from. The fact that there is some little digging to be done means that the step may consume some of your precious time. Therefore, don’t rush the process because choosing the right program will make the time you lost worthy. 

There are various questions that you’ll need to ask yourself when selecting an affiliate program. For example, you must ask about the commission you’re likely to receive from the program. Remember, you’re in the affiliate marketing to make some extra cash. Hence, you should choose a well-paying plan. Also, you can research the type of merchants using your preferred affiliate program. Knowing the kind of merchants using the program helps evaluate the level of success you’re likely to witness through the program.

It’s also advisable to carry out thorough research about the products in question. When dealing with products and marketing, you will realize that some products don’t match their descriptions. Therefore, you shouldn’t select your products blindly. Always pick a product that you believe in to avoid surprises. Selecting a product that you understand and believe in saves you from the agony of the customers fighting you for misleading them. Selecting a legit product or service helps reserve the reputation of your hustle, which is crucial. 

You must as well consider the level of communication when choosing the right affiliate program to join. Smart affiliate marketers choose a program that offers instant communication. The immediate responses are essential, to the newbies, especially. They need the team’s assistance during your affiliate journey. 

So, unless you don’t mind waiting for 72 hours to get a response, be sure that your preferred program has a standby support team to assist you. You can inquire about the presence of the support team through the program’s reviews. Reviews contain both the good and the ugly side of the program and can help you with making a final decision. 

Create a website

Now that you’re sure about your preferred niche and the affiliate program, your next move should be to put the ideas into action. You’ll need a working website to jumpstart your career in affiliate marketing. In the modern world, creating a website isn’t a difficult task. Currently, building a website isn’t a tedious task as it used to be in the past. However, some people, especially those with zero-tech knowledge, find it as a hard-nut to crack. 

If you in the newbies’ category, you can hire the services of a web designer to provide the site for you at a cost. One fantastic thing about hiring a web designer is that he or she can guide you through the process of creating an impressive site. Remember, most of these web designers have dealt with a wide area of websites. Therefore, they not only create a website for you, but they help you with making hard decisions along the way. Selecting a theme for your site, for example, can be challenging and that’s why you may need a third eye.

If you are a DIY kind of a person, you can as well create the site by yourself. Platforms such as WordPress have made all these possible. With WordPress, you can come up with a fantastic website. The platform takes care of the coding stuff, behind the scenes, while you drag and drop your web content without any hustle. 

Once you’re done with establishing a website, you will need to go live, and that involves buying an address for your site. Purchasing a domain name is mandatory, and it’s the first thing you’ll need to go live. More often than not, choosing a domain name can be challenging because your preferred domain name may already have been picked. Thus, it’s advisable to have in mind various options. 

Also, you will need to set up a web hosting for your site to go live. A web host is simply a place over the internet in which all your files related to the site are saved. Today, there are many host providers in the market. Therefore, you can go with a provider that charges within your budget. It’s, however, advisable to select a reliable reputation and reputation because your website depends significantly on the host. 

Once you’re done with the domain name and the hosting bit, your next action should be to install a content management system (CMS). Most platforms do recommend WordPress because it’s easy to use. Therefore, as a beginner, you can expect less trouble when figuring how its features work. 

Produce content

Here is where the famous phrase “content is king” comes into play. Well, when it comes to establishing a successful site, content is vital. Therefore, as an affiliate marketer, creating content is one area that you should consider. Although creating content may be time-consuming, it’s usually the rewarding part of affiliate business. 

There are many affiliate marketers in the game dealing with the same area as you. Therefore, you can expect the level of competition to be high. Hence, you must come up with tricks aimed at letting you stand out from the rest in the already crowded online business. 

The first step towards succeeding in creating content is coming up with unique and high-quality content. Coming up with an original content allows your site to stand out as a professional and thus winning the reader’s trust in you. Therefore, you must ensure that your content is well-researched and straightforward. 

Most readers prefer a simple and yet detailed content. Therefore, when creating content, ensure that you research thoroughly. The in-depth research helps one understand the field in detail and thus allowing you to deliver the material in a simple language that every reader can comprehend. 

Ranking on the search engines is essential as it’s what determines how easy it will be to find your site. Search engines use these criteria to determine which sites will appear on the first pages of the search. As an affiliate marketer, your primary goal is to have your website ranked on the top list of the search. This high ranking can be achieved by ensuring that your content is highly optimized.

One amazing way to boost your site’s rankings is ensuring that your content is rich in the keyword. Yes, you must make use of the keyword which matches your field. When it comes to playing around with the keywords, you must ensure that they flow naturally. Don’t make the mistake of inserting the keywords anyhow as this can see your content appear irrelevant. 

You can as well boost your site’s rankings by posting content regularly. Remember, visitors come to your site to read the content. Therefore, the only way to keep them coming back is by delivering fresh content frequently. You may opt to provide the content daily or weekly based on your area of specialization. 

The idea here is not to primarily deliver content, but provide one that your readers find helpful. As an affiliate marketer, you generate traffic to a company’s products or services through your site. Therefore, creating content regularly increases the chances of your readers, clicking your affiliate links. 

Establish a fan base

You will need a loyal audience for a website and affiliate marketing to work. It’s your traffic which earns you an income as an affiliate marketer. One of the surest ways to build an excellent audience is delivering content regularly. As stated earlier, a consistent flow of quality content means that your readers will keep coming back whenever you post a new article. 

There are various tactics in which you can establish an audience. Today, there is social media, a potent tool that you can use to your advantage. Platforms such as Facebook have millions of users from all over the world. This figure is an indication that there are plenty of opportunities out there for you. 

You can, therefore, start finding a new audience from your social media pages. Website content is easily sharable, and consequently, you can share your recent posts on Facebook, for example. The trick helps win a new audience from your social media. Social media helps one connect to his or her audience with much ease. Keeping tabs with your fans is one of the best ways to win their trust. The instant responses make them feel as part and person of your business. 

Most successful affiliate marketers invest in paid ads as a way of winning a new audience. You can as well follow suit and invest in paid ads. Paid ads may see you spend a massive sum of money, but are worth it because they promise huge returns. You can start by utilizing the powers of social media influencers. Social media influencers are quite affordable and can help one win a considerable audience. You can as well invest in Google Ad Words as it is a good option for those willing to part with some little money and get traffic in return. 

Market the products or services

The sixth and most crucial step is promoting products and services. There are various ways to improve what you’re selling on behalf of a company. Some of the most common ways to promote the products include;

Product reviews

As said earlier, you must choose to promote a product that your trust. Working on a product that you trust and understand makes it easy to give an in-depth description related to the product. You can, therefore, promote the product by sharing your honest review with your fans. A successful product review should be detailed, but delivered in a simple language that your readers can comprehend.

Also, including real images in your product reviews is essential as they help your readers understand what you’re talking. In the modern world, buyers are always checking for reviews about every product before deciding to buy. Therefore, writing product reviews is a win-win situation because you will be winning traffic as well as commissions from the purchases made by your readers.

Banner ads

Often, you will come across advertisements while reading through an article on a website. Well, these banner ads are ways in which affiliates market other people’s products or services. You can as well allow banner ads on your site. A well-placed banner ad can do a great job of winning sales and hence success as an affiliate marketer.

Inserting links to products in between your content

In-text linking is a popular hack and that you should include in your affiliate game. It involves inserting links to your affiliate offers in-between your content. When utilizing the in-text links, you must ensure that they sound natural for every reader. A professionally-placed link helps one easily earn a commission.

Repeat step 4 and 6

You’ve to understand that anything related to website content isn’t a one-night job. As stated earlier, your content requires to be updated regularly. Whatever content you post on the blog is what the audience comes to read. Therefore, you must ensure that you keep your readers occupied, and that means updating your content on a daily or weekly schedule. 

As an affiliate marketer, the more content you post, the more products you should promote. You must, therefore, ensure that your materials are stuffed with promotional offers. By doing so, you will be increasing the chances of the readers buying products via your affiliate link.

How To Be A Successful Affiliate

By now, you know How To Start Affiliate Marketing from our step by step guide. Well, these can help you launch your affiliate business. However, there are various tricks and through which you can take your affiliate game to the next higher level. Here are some pro tips on how to succeed as an affiliate marketer. 

Love what you do

As said earlier, your first step towards becoming a successful affiliate marketer is choosing a niche that you’re passionate about. Choosing your favorite niche ensures that you enjoy what you’re doing. There is nothing that feels amazing than earning some cash by doing what you love. 

Respect the process

Affiliate marketing isn’t a quick money-making scheme. If you’re in it for a fast money solution, you may end up disappointed. In affiliate marketing, you first learn then you remove the L. If you’re, therefore, looking forward to earning big money through the platform, you must first respect the whole process of growth. The process equips you with the knowledge and skills needed to move about the industry.

Know what you’re promoting

There is nothing that feels amazing than pushing a product you know well. It gives you the confidence needed to write a quality product review, for example. Besides, knowing what you’re promoting helps you answer any questions asked by your readers and related to the product. Also, knowing what you’re supporting helps avoid the cases of fake products as this can spoil your reputation. 

Ensure consistency 

The secret to owning a successful blog is consistency. Yes, ensuring that your post fresh content regularly keeps your audience coming back to your page. Therefore, if you’re looking forward to seeing those indirect sales shoot, be sure to keep your readers busy. 

Know your audience

In affiliate marketing, your audience is your bosses. It’s the audience that earns you commissions. Therefore, you must ensure that the audience gets whatever it wants. You must, therefore, research to understand your audience’s taste and preferences. By doing so, it becomes easy to deliver what the audience wants and thus success.

Create timeless content (evergreen)

Another trick to becoming a successful affiliate marketer is coming up with timeless content. In other words, you should try and focus on content that will remain relevant even in the future. Concentrating on such content ensures that you earn a commission on a long-term basis. 

Conclusion: How To Start Affiliate Marketing

Well now you know everything there is to know about How To Start Affiliate Marketing.

Becoming an affiliate marketer is simple as it doesn’t ask for too much. However, succeeding in the affiliate game isn’t a walk in the park. It involves a step-by-step process and which must be strictly followed. By reading this article, you will understand the step-by-step procedure and know why each of the steps is vital.

Also, the article covers the six top tips on how to become a successful affiliate marketer. Read through the whole piece to understand how it’s easy to join and succeed in the affiliate business.

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  • Revolist is literally the best community anywhere. I read it everyday, and I’m also great full I found it helped me learn affiliate marketing and make consistent income not only blank, it helps some others!

  • Hey John, I really like your name 😀
    Also, thank you for this post, as I am actually trying to learn and start affiliate marketing. In your post you said that you need to create content but I also read this post, [link removed]
    In which it says that I can start to build a targeted email list for free and make some sales. Does this method actually work or is it a scam?

    Thanks in advance,
    John Stones

    • Haha. Yes, our mothers certainly picked a good one 😉 . One of my main recommendations in this post was to checkout Legendary. If you go through his free online business builder challenge, you’ll see that he talks about building an email list. He considers this a “high-income” skill. He also covers the other important high-income skills in the challenge. Check out the free business builder challenge (link near the top of this post) to watch the videos and learn the other high-income skills you will need to become a successful affiliate marketer. Cheers.

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