Affiliate Marketing: 4 Common Mistakes
By: Ian Traynor
There are many appealing and attractive myths about affiliate marketing.
People who do not understand the process are prone to believing that affiliate marketing will give them a great fortune overnight. Yes, it's true that there are a few very successful affiliate marketers. You may be one of them for all I know!
And affiliate marketing can be very rewarding, financially. But, like most things in life, these rewards don't come without hard work. And they won't come to you unless you avoid the mistakes that many, many affiliate marketers make.
Here are four common mistakes that wannabe affiliate marketers make:
Not understanding search engine marketing
If you are promoting affiliate products through your own website, you must be capable of driving traffic to your site. And, until you become a lot more successful, pay-per-click methods will be too expensive for you to use.
This means that you will have to rely on search engines for traffic. And you will have to learn the best ways to optimize your pages to rank higher in the search engines for your chosen keywords.
Not providing enough information
The primary job of the affiliate is to pre-sell the product being promoted. You don't have to copy the sales page of the product. Your job is to get people in a favorable frame of mind before they arrive at the sales page. You need not only to get your website visitors to click through to the sales page, but to get them to click through in a favorable state of mind.
Stuffing your web pages with affiliate banners is not the right way to promote products. But so many inexperienced affiliate marketers do just that.
You need to understand the products you are promoting, and you need to pass this knowledge on to potential customers.
Apart from links through from my main website, Marketing Magic, I also have a product review website, Marketing Choice. Here I can devote an entire web page to the pros and cons of a product. And yes, you should mention some of the weak points about a product; it adds credibility to your review. Just ensure that the "pros" outweigh the "cons"!
Promoting too many products
You're not able to give enough attention to an individual product if you try to promote too many products.
Experiment a bit, find half a dozen or so products which get results for you and stick with them for a while. Don't close your eyes to new opportunities, but don't jump onto every band wagon that rolls past you!
It would be equally wrong to promote just one product. The most successful affiliate marketers may have one product that they concentrate on, but they also believe in multiple income streams. This is a sound strategy for all internet marketers.
As I said in my introduction, you won't succeed in affiliate marketing without hard work. And that means hard work over a long period of time.
Many unsuccessful affiliate marketers pick up a new product and run half-heartedly with it for a few weeks. Then, when it doesn't make them incredibly rich (surprise, surprise!) they drop it and proceed to make the same mistake with the next "flavor of the month"!
If you have enough confidence in an affiliate product, then you must sustain that confidence over a period of months - or even years. There are some affiliate products that I have been steadily promoting since 1999 - and they are still producing income for me.
So, if you can avoid these common mistakes, you will achieve much more than 99 per cent of affiliate marketers. Wouldn't you like to be one of the top one per cent?
© 2007, Ian Traynor.
Ian Traynor has been building and running websites since 1996. His "Marketing Magic" website provides tons of free advice and help on all aspects of online and offline selling and marketing. Sign Up on "Marketing Update" newsletter - and get access to his subscribers' free Download Library. Ian is also the Principal of the Newbies School of Internet Marketing.