At first glance, affiliate marketing seems like a walk in the park. When you read about it online, it looks like a lazy man’s dream job. You don’t have to build, manage, or even store products. You don’t have to distribute products or worry about customer support. No wonder why thousands of people every day try their luck in affiliate markets.
Some take a more hands-on approach and charge to success, while others adopt a more paranoid modus operandi and focus on all the details before committing to a single brand or product to promote. Regardless of which group you belong to, almost everyone online wants to make use of this model and generate some sweet income by recommending someone else’s products.
Even though affiliate marketing seems like a gift from heaven, the sad truth is most newbies fail at it. Contrary to all the articles and online courses that claim you can generate tons of revenue with almost no effort using this business model, affiliate marketing is actually a pretty hard practice to master. It demands a lot of hard work and focus to succeed.
People get suckered into this game by various online marketing gurus, thinking they will make a ton of money without breaking a sweat. They start with very high expectations and end up disappointed once they see that things don’t magically work out for them.
The biggest reasons for failure in this business are caused by the wrong mindset and lack of proper skills. We at Traffic Mansion have prepared a list of reasons why most newbies need to accept failure as part of their learning curve in affiliate marketing:
1. Wrong Expectations
Starting with the mindset: Most people go into affiliate marketing thinking it’s a hobby; something they could do on the side when they have a couple of hours to kill.
Contrary to popular opinion, affiliate marketing is an extremely crowded and competitive business. In order to get noticed, newbies need to figure out unique ways to stand out from the crowd.
Because they don’t really have a reputation in the community or an already established base of trusty followers, they need to work twice as hard to get on people’s radar. This, of course, is completely different from what most online marketing gurus are preaching about affiliate marketing. That’s why most newbies experience a rough start in this industry. Some get disappointed very quickly and decide to call it quits, while others tend to hold on and push through the bad times. Those who survive, usually end up as successful affiliate marketers.
2. Lack of Networking Skills or Understanding the Value of Building Engaged Audiences
Most newbies tend to have little to no interest in building audiences. They want to make money first; everything else comes second. This is not the right way to do affiliate marketing. Most people who enter this business with dollar signs in their eyes are almost certain to fail.
Regardless of the niche or market in which you decide to operate, developing a loyal, engaged audience should be your number one objective. Getting to know your leads and building relationships with them is something you should never stop doing.
Every relationship you make will prove its value at some point in time. Even though most newbies tend to rely on ads for reaching prospects, nothing makes people remember your name and become engaged in what you do like quality content. If you want to build big audiences, be sure to reply to your prospects’ comments, friend them on social media, share ideas and much more. The ideas is to see people coming back for more help.
In order to make it in this business, you first need to demonstrate your expertise and make people see you as a person they can trust, not someone who shamelessly promotes products and brands for a handful of dollars. Building authority is hard work and most newbies try to avoid it, but sooner or later they figure out it’s essential to their success.
3. There is No Copy-Paste
Even though affiliate marketing is often described as a “lazy man’s dream job,” the truth is there are no shortcuts in this business. If you just try to copy what other affiliates are doing, you won’t be able to get anyone to listen to you.
You have to add or invent your very own tone of voice and make sure that your content is full of unique, practical value. Slightly altering and duplicating what others are doing won’t really help you get ahead. It takes time, effort, and motivation to succeed in this line of work.
For most newbies, this tends to feel like a total nightmare. It’s hard to get your head in the game and start producing outstanding content—especially until you really get to know your niche and audience.
This is a long and exhausting road, paved with trial and error. It takes a while to get into the zone, so it’s of great importance that newbies remain patient and continue to work on their content and overall marketing strategy.
4. Not Knowing What’s On Their Plate
When they look for brands or products to promote, most newbies don’t really dig deep into details. This often triggers an avalanche of problems.
Before you can even start to think about making money as an affiliate marketer, it’s of crucial importance to know your products inside and out.
It’s almost impossible to convince anyone to buy something if you don’t really make a compelling argument regarding why certain products and services are worth their attention and money. Your job is not to spam your prospects with offers, but to help them solve their problems and buy something that they actually need.
In order to do that, you need to show your audience that you actually know what you’re promoting and that you have tested the products and services you’re currently recommending. Give them real-life examples and insights of what to expect from certain items and services.
5. Finding the Right Platform is Not Easy for Beginners
Most newbies get involved with too many platforms and projects before they even fully acquaint themselves with the market and all the options they have online. Like we already discussed in the first half of this article, many newbies treat affiliate marketing as a hobby at first. That being said, most of them enter the game without a proper plan or strategy in sight. They don’t set any goals or think about how to monitor and optimize their efforts.
A lot of newbies exclusively focus on money. They don’t really care about marketing or anything else. With so many affiliate platforms to choose from that offer a wide range of deals, most newbies just join everywhere and start promoting everything. Naturally, this often backfires.
In order to succeed in affiliate marketing, you need to have a plan and stick to it. You need to choose the right platform to help you achieve your goals because all of them bring different things to the table. A crucial aspect of marketing is patience, even in the face of an insatiable desire to be successful. That is a hard balance to achieve.
Over to You
Thank you for taking the time to read this article. We hope it helped you understand how affiliate marketing really works and why failing is a common theme amongst newbies.
The general idea of this article wasn’t to scare you away from this line of work, but rather to make it clear to you that failing is an essential part of this process and that you should be never afraid to make mistakes.
The most important takeaway here should be to always keep in mind that this a game of trial and error—you should learn about affiliate marketing from proper sources and adjust your expectations according to reliable information.