I relay the story of Dan Henry because it exemplifies the power of this thing called the internet that binds us all. And while Henry has succeeded on a massive scale, so many others have hit roadblocks, stumbled, fallen and failed. The large rate of failure helps to mystify and obfuscate this world of affiliate marketing because so many are trying to penetrate this market but so few are able to succeed on a large scale.
Affiliate marketing allows you to make money online, even if you don’t have a blog, website, or any products of your own. Following a few simple steps can get you up and running within hours and earning your first commissions right away. Affiliate marketing really is one of the fastest and easiest ways to make money online and should be a part of every online business owner's portfolio.
How established is your site/blog/social media following?  Do you already have an audience of 1 million or are you just getting started?  Early on in your affiliate marketing journey you will probably want to have multiple options to make sure you can cover a broad field. You might want to become an Amazon Associate as well as joining one of the networks so you will have a product link to drop into any posts you do.  An easy place to start is to promote the services you are using if you are enjoying their product - web hosting or email management systems like Aweber.
Cramer-Krasselt, New York, New York • HCK2 Partners, Dallas, Texas • Marshall Fenn Communications, Toronto, Ontario, Canada • Marketing Results, Las Vegas, Nevada • The Dealey Group, Dallas, Texas • Tait Subler, Minneapolis, Minnesota • Targetbase, Irving, Texas • Dimension Group, Dallas, Texas • Turnkey Construction, Dallas, Texas • Creative Memories, St. Cloud, Minnesota • Danco (NCH), Irving, Texas • Dr Pepper Snapple Group, Plano, Texas • Frito-Lay, Plano, Texas • Gatorade, Chicago, Illinois • Golden County Foods, Plover, Wisconsin • Jack Black, Carrollton, Texas • Jarden Corporation, Boca Raton, Florida • Nike, Beaverton, Oregon • Nokia Mobile Phones, Irving, Texas • Quaker Oats, Chicago, Illinois • QuikTrip Corporation, Tulsa, Oklahoma • SkinCeuticals, Garland, Texas • Tropicana, Chicago, Illinois • Kaplan University, Chicago, Illinois • Texas Christian University, Fort Worth, Texas • Gladney Center for Adoption, Fort Worth, Texas • Credit Union of Texas, Dallas, Texas • Kroger Personal Finance, Cincinnati, Ohio • Lovelace Health Plan, Albuquerque, New Mexico • Millenium Bank, Dallas, Texas • American Casino & Entertainment, Las Vegas, Nevada • Argosy Sioux City, Sioux City, Iowa • Boyd Gaming, Las Vegas, Nevada • Caesars Entertainment, Las Vegas, Nevada • Casino New Brunswick, Moncton, New Brunswick, Canada • Casino Rama, Orillia, Ontario, Canada • Hollywood Casino at Penn National Race Course, Grantville, Pennsylvania • Hollywood Casino Baton Rouge, Baton Rouge, Louisiana • Hollywood Casino Joliet, Joliet, Illinois • Hollywood Casino Tunica, Tunica, Mississippi • Parx Casino, Bensalem, Pennsylvania • Penn National Gaming, Wyomissing, Pennsylvania • Tachi Palace Hotel & Casino, Lemoore, California • AdvoCare, Carrollton, Texas • Baylor � Tom Landry Fitness Center, Dallas, Texas • Caron Treatment Centers, New York, New York • First Fitness, Carrollton, Texas • Arlington Memorial Hospital, Arlington, Texas • Baylor All Saints Medical Center at Ft. Worth, Ft. Worth, Texas • Baylor University Medical Center, Dallas, Texas • Dermpath Diagnostics, Addison, Texas • Harris Methodist Hospital, Fort Worth, Texas • Hillcrest HealthCare System, Tulsa, Oklahoma • Huntsville Memorial Hospital, Huntsville, Texas • IntraOp Medical, San Jose, California • Johnson & Johnson, Cleveland, Ohio • Knapp Medical Center, Weslaco, Texas • LifeCell Corporation, Branchburn, New Jersey • Lovelace Health System, Albuquerque, New Mexico • Medical Center of McKinney, McKinney, Texas • OraMetrix, Inc., Richardson, Texas • Pfizer, Inc. Animal Health Division, New York, New York • Presbyterian Hospital of Plano, Plano, Texas • Richardson Regional Medical Center, Richardson, Texas • Texas Health Resources, Arlington, Texas • United Regional Health System, Wichita Falls, Texas • The Heart Hospital at Baylor Plano, Plano, Texas • McAfee, Inc., Plano, Texas • NEC America, Irving, Texas • Nortel Wireless Networks, Richardson, Texas • NXP Semiconductors, Gratkorn, Austria • Rockwell Collins, Cedar Rapids, Iowa • Texas Instruments, Dallas, Texas • Tyler Technologies, Dallas, Texas • City of University Park, University Park, Texas • The Town of Highland Park, Highland Park, Texas • Boy Scouts Circle 10 Council, Irving, Texas • Association for Healthcare Foodservice, Louisville, Kentucky • National Air Transportation Association, Washington, D.C. • National Business Aviation Association, Alexandria, Virginia • Benihana, Miami, Florida • Buffet Partners, LP, Plano, Texas • Donatos Pizza, Columbus, Ohio • Grandy's, Lewisville, Texas • Mission Burrito, Houston, Texas • Pizza Inn, The Colony, Texas • Rave Motion Pictures, Dallas, Texas • Redstone Golf Management, Humble, Texas • The Houstonian Club & Spa, Houston, Texas • Medieval Times, Dallas, Texas • Garland Power & Light, Garland, Texas • Oncor, Dallas, Texas

Hi Jamie, awesome content that is very helpful esp with the resources, links and the rich discussions. Want to start e-commerce and blog for money…selling others products, want to go full on with this, tired of the daily routine crunch working for others. I live in a developing country (PNG) that has high internet costs (work still in progress with getting rates down…) so will see how I go with your posts. Any advise? Don’t have a website yet, have to build one I guess….
Once your platform is live, you need a product to promote. However, you should avoid the temptation to do this early on. Get that emotional investment going before you attempt to do this. If you begin too early, you run the risk of losing a large portion of your audience. Take the time to first create insatiable content and deliver enormous amounts of value before you attempt to sell your audience anything.
Contact the company directly. If you use a product or service and want to recommend it but you can’t find evidence of an affiliate program, consider approaching them and asking if they are willing to set one up (maybe with your help). Highlight your audience and the value of your recommendation. Explain that an affiliate program is simply rewarding happy customers (you!) for promoting, and they don’t have to pay until a sale is made.
Will my target audience realistically buy this now, or at a different time? Be sensitive to sales cycles and seasons. Maybe you should avoid holidays (when people are away from their computers, like July 4 in the U.S.) or maybe you should target holidays (like the day after Thanksgiving), but know the difference. Again, know your audience. Plan your content accordingly.
Do they value and help their affiliates? Some affiliate programs do an exceptional job of communicating with their affiliates, notifying them of upcoming sales, offering marketing advice or tools, offering contents and prizes during promotions and more. These types of affiliate programs are a pleasure to be a part of. Ultimate Bundles is an excellent example.
I was interested in joining the Amazon associate program but the update rolled out. I haven’t started work as an Amazon affiliate so I was just curious to ask that is it fine if we send traffic only from social media platforms? Does Amazon allow only social traffic like Pinterest, Instagram? Will it result in a ban if we don’t add much content rather make it look like an e-commerce store?
Some well-known brands that use ClixGalore for their affiliate offerings are Bluehost, Time Life, Trend Micro, Citibank, and Fox Sports Shop. While not as widely known as some of the other affiliate networks, ClixGalore is a solid network that offers thousands of potential merchant programs. The network also offers a two-tier network. By referring other affiliates to the network, current affiliates can receive a portion of their earnings.
Amazon is the largest affiliate site that offers numerous advantages to sellers and affiliates alike. With more than one and a half million sellers, this is the perfect place for beginners to start affiliate marketing. This site is also an excellent option for advanced affiliate marketers who can create custom tools and websites that have APIs and as well as Amazon implementations. As a beginner, you will need some form of a platform where you can promote your products. The most common way of doing this is through your blog or website.
Thanks for all the information I am slowly working my way through your list of do’s and donts! ! I’ve been approached by a website that wants to develop editorial content for my blog featuring home improvement tips from their”national client” and pay me $40 a year for reviewing and publishing their content. Boy, I am just not sure how this all works? Any words for when we are approached by others to write for our blogs?
Vovéo serves Astea in a range of capacities – from visual branding, to core corporate diagrams, to website creation, product marketing & lead generation. Vovéo is able to simplify our complex business model and communicate it in a way that makes sense to our audience. In fact, prospects have told us that Vovéo's work answered questions before they were even asked, and is a driving factor for follow-up with our company.– Debbie Geiger, Vice President, Marketing, Astea International
It’s important to know where your traffic is coming from and the demographics of your audience. This will allow you to customize your messaging so that you can provide the best affiliate product recommendations. You shouldn’t just focus on the vertical you’re in, but on the traffic sources and audience that’s visiting your site. Traffic sources may include organic, paid, social media, referral, display, email, or direct traffic. You can view traffic source data in Google Analytics to view things such as time on page, bounce rate, geo location, age, gender, time of day, devices (mobile vs. desktop), and more so that you can focus your effort on the highest converting traffic. This analytics data is crucial to making informed decisions, increasing your conversion rates, and making more affiliate sales. 
Amazon is the largest affiliate site that offers numerous advantages to sellers and affiliates alike. With more than one and a half million sellers, this is the perfect place for beginners to start affiliate marketing. This site is also an excellent option for advanced affiliate marketers who can create custom tools and websites that have APIs and as well as Amazon implementations. As a beginner, you will need some form of a platform where you can promote your products. The most common way of doing this is through your blog or website.
Affiliate marketing is also called "performance marketing", in reference to how sales employees are typically being compensated. Such employees are typically paid a commission for each sale they close, and sometimes are paid performance incentives for exceeding objectives.[21] Affiliates are not employed by the advertiser whose products or services they promote, but the compensation models applied to affiliate marketing are very similar to the ones used for people in the advertisers' internal sales department.
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