Are you afraid of being taken for a fool or worse yet being scammed out of money?
What exactly is affiliate marketing, and is it a scam?
So you’ve heard enough about affiliate marketing to be interested in checking it out.
Let’s do a little exploring together. To determine if affiliate marketing is a scam, one must first define the term affiliate marketing.
Affiliate marketing is a means by which a company can get new customers by allowing a middleman, an affiliate marketer, to explain for themselves what the product represents to them.
Basically, anyone who owns a billboard, or any other form of advertising media, who promotes another company’s product, is an affiliate marketer.
The company gets honest advertising, spending less time than what the company would spend on an actual ad campaign, and possibly a reduced rate for the advertising.
The customer gets an opportunity to learn from a source that quite possibly has used the product, or at the minimum has done in-depth research on the product.
This gives the customer an honest recommendation on the quality and specifications of the product, and is offered a place to acquire the product. The affiliate marketer, the middleman, gets a small commission for writing a review, and recommending a place to purchase the product.
This is good for the customer because they don’t have to pay for this service. Plus they can compare several different brands of a product to determine which would best fit their needs.
What kind of products do affiliate marketers promote?
The product can be absolutely anything you can think of, there are literally billions of products out there. It can also be a service, such as personal trainer, handyman, electrician, beautician, the list goes on and on.
The product can be coffee makers and coffee, outdoor gear, tents, boots, hats. food slicers, It can be baby clothes and adult clothes, dog food and cat food… You get the picture. Like I said, BILLIONS of products and services.
Which companies can I sign up with?.
These are companies large and small, like Amazon, Best Buy, Walmart, and hundreds of thousands of other companies. Vitamin companies, book companies, clothing companies, companies that cater weddings, Bat Mitzvahs, and Quinceaneras.
It can be your local hardware store or your international sporting goods store. Companies that have affiliate marketing programs range from Amazon, to Walmart, to Best Buy.
How do you tell if these companies have affiliate marketing programs? Go to their websites! Go to the Amazon website and look in the footer menu, second menu from the bottom, second column over, right there it says, “Become An Affiliate”. You get the idea! Hundreds of thousands of companies.
Who are my customers?
Who are these elusive buyers who do a little research when they need that coffee pot? These are the people who want a good product for their specific needs and don’t know if the big expensive one is too much for their needs, or maybe the smaller one will fit better under the cabinet.
These are the people who are conscientious about what they are buying, these are the people who leave a comment letting the company (see above) that sold them the product that it is indeed a good product, just like the affiliate marketer said.
Because they want other people to know that A) this is a good product, and B) the affiliate marketer that wrote the review is an honest person. You understand the concept!
And who is this mysterious affiliate marketer?
This is the lady who wrote the review, this is the man who used the coffee pot and decided he would like to let other people know whether it was a good product or not. They are the people who spent the time to let other people know this product has this quirk or that flaw.
This is the person that compared the different tents together in order for the customer to know they need a six-man tent, instead of two three-man tents. It’s the person who let those 3.5 billion customers know where to get that tent they’ve been looking. You see the benefits!
Now we now what affiliate marketing is. We also know that 3.5 billion customers use affiliate marketers to find the right products or services, We know that large and small companies, including mega-retailers such as Amazon and Best Buy, have affiliate programs.
We know there are billions of products to buy online. Amazon alone has 397 MILLION products.
Is Affiliate Marketing a scam? It is a legitimate business model for making money on the internet.
Getting INTO affiliate marketing can be treacherous, just like MLMs or stock investing or any other way to earn great money part-time. The self-employment industry is FULL of people who want to scam you!
Fortunately for affiliate marketing, you can start training for no money to a small investment.
Some companies offer great free training for $49 a month memberships, which includes hosting your websites. Other companies will charge you $100 for one course, and not even offer you access to the instructor.
There are also companies who start you out with a $1000 investment and by the time you’ve exhausted all your efforts and cash, they are into your pocketbook for $8000, with not even a WEBSITE.
Selling expensive programs in order to get into affiliate marketing is rife with scams. Because to become an affiliate marketer, you DO NOT have to have a lot of cash.
You do have to be very wary as you wade through the scams. Do your homework. If they are asking for a large investment fee, be wary.
DO I have to put any TIME and EFFORT into affiliate marketing?
Yes, you do have to put some time and effort into it, as with any business startup. But a large investment is not necessary! There are companies out there who will charge you $2500 or more to become an affiliate marketer. There are companies who promise you will get rich before your next meal.
There are companies who will give you a minuscule amount of free training, then they’ll ask you for a few hundred dollars more, then they’ll ask you for thousands of dollars after that. Just for training.
These are the companies who are SCAMS. There is NO GUARANTEE that spending exorbitant amounts of money will make you successful.
And if you want to get-rich-quick, you need to keep buying those lottery tickets. You’ll have a better chance of succeeding.
Affiliate marketing takes three things.
- Time: Anything worth doing takes a little time to get it going. The beginner affiliate marketer should be able to commit a minimum of 5 hours a week and ideally 20 hours per week.
- Training: No one hits the ground running, this does not take a college education but training is a must. “Earn while you learn” is the best method, you can’t sit there reading the lessons without performing the tasks.
- Patience: It will not happen overnight, with persistence, success can begin in as little as a month. It’s not a get-rich-overnite scheme.
There are great affiliate hosting companies out there who have great training programs, a great community to ask questions of if you get stuck, and great access to website hosting assistance.
Who offers free training?
The good companies do not charge you an arm and a leg for training. They do offer some good training at no charge.
Enough free training that you’ll actually be able to tell if affiliate marketing is for you, one even gives you hosting for two websites. So you can dive in, create a website or two, really get the feel of how much work it takes.
What’s the best company with free training?
The best one I’ve found is Wealthy Affiliate.
Then for a reasonable monthly fee you get the top-level of training, access to hosting of lots of websites. And no other upgrades, ever.
One premium level for everyone. YOU have to put in the time needed. YOU have to study the lessons. YOU have to have the patience to allow your hard work to pay off.
- Free membership
- Free beginner training
- 2 websites hosted with their domain
- Access to their affiliate community
PLUS the Premium Membership offers:
- Keyword tool
- SEO Training
- Affiliate Marketing Training
- Training on how to choose your business niche
- Building a website.
- Website hosting
- 30 Second website builder
AND there are two levels of membership, not 20! The Free Membership and the Premium Membership.
The Premium Membership gives you access to 50 websites, 5 courses of Affiliate Certification and 7 Courses of Affiliate Bootcamp Training. Plus access to thousands of other affiliate marketers who KNOW how to make money in this business and are there for you!
Get on the Train Of Success NOW! Go here to read my review of Wealthy Affiliate!
Get a quick peak of the free training offered at Wealthy Affiliate with Lesson Three, no obligation!
What experiences have you had with affiliate marketing and making money online? Let us know below!
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