Starting in affiliate marketing sometimes feels like having a baby. Lots of sleepless nights, stress, and lack of general understanding of what is going on. You just can’t go like this for a long time.
It’s not like you’re failing and your
baby campaign is going to die. You will, if you keep working like this.
Not everything is important and has to be taken care of right away, but some things are. Keep note of them.
Not everything is worth spending money on, but some things are. Keep track of them.
Not every person will bring you wisdom in affiliate marketing, but I will. With this article full of affiliate marketing tips that will help you work more effectively. Listen to me.
1. Keep a Journal
This is the most important, yet probably the most surprising thing you should be doing: write down your whole affiliate journey.
Not in a Moleskine notebook, but in a spreadsheet.
What for, you may ask?
Because in affiliate marketing everything serves some purpose.
You can tell yourself that you are not buying traffic, but data. Some data brings you profit, some doesn’t, but all data can be used to improve yourself.
Your journal should be divided into three parts:
Let’s go over each part in more detail.
When you are only beginning your affiliate adventure, you won’t be running thousands of campaigns. Probably just a few. You will know them by heart, give them individual names and so on.
However you view your campaigns, treat them as a cold-hearted bookkeeper. Note the following information:
- Date of launch
- Landing page
Note if you have stopped this campaign and why or if it died out on its own (the offer expired). Write down if it was working and on what kind of traffic.
If you do this consequently, you will have your own private knowledge base of what works and what doesn’t on your traffic.
As you scale up and run more campaigns, it will become harder and harder to note every single campaign. At that time, you will develop your own methods of work. For now, keep your little treasured journal by your side…
Or rather, have access to your spreadsheet in a cloud via a reliable connection.
Geez, modern times lack any romance!
Apart from learning from the data you collect and buy, you also learn from valuable articles, sites, blogs, and forums that you come across.
Keep a separate place for them in your journal, and if you can, reserve a special place for this blog.
Your journal is also a good place to keep track of all your affiliate marketing costs. I talk about this subject more in the next paragraph.
The future of your journal
Who knows, after several years of running successful campaigns, maybe you will find this journal and have a giggle.
You may say things like “I can’t believe I thought this would work” or “That was a waste of money”, but everything you noted there had helped you get to where you are now. Every insight, however obvious it seems right now, was a stepping stone on your way to the affiliate heaven.
Never forget where you came from.
2.Calculate the Costs
Unfortunately, traffic you buy isn’t the only cost. Affiliate marketing has more, but still they are much lower than for any other types of businesses.
This includes, but regretfully is not limited to:
- Tools, such as spy tools, trackers, landing page builders
- Landing page hosting
- Custom domains
- Paid forum memberships
- People you hire, such as graphic designers, web developers
Only the last point is included in the ‘cost’ column in a tracker. This may give you a false idea of your profitability.
It’s much better to have an Excel formula that will take into account everything that you actually spend and everything that you earned.
In the beginning, you may be tempted to go for the lone-wolf approach. After all, we all look up to top affiliates that look like a one-man army. They seem to have it all figured out by themselves. But trust me, every millionaire affiliate was once a humble beginner asking simple questions on forums.
My personal recommendation would be our comprehensive article on How to start in affiliate marketing.
But such articles are general. You may want a real person to give you advice on your current situation, help you work in a niche or GEO that you have selected.
There are forums, Facebook groups, and even Telegram support groups. You can participate in them in several ways:
- You can read what others have posted.
- You can ask questions and get answers.
- You can start a follow along, which would be a supplement to your journal.
I really, truly do recommend doing all three, with an emphasis on on a follow along. Why? Because people may comment and bring valuable knowledge, and also it would serve as a motivator for you to keep going.
4. Work with Others
With today’s Internet, you can get much more than just written help online. Ten years ago it was hard to hire a freelancer.
But a few years and one pandemic later, remote work is something normal. Whole countries hid indoors and were still operational. There are no problems with outsourcing parts of your work.
So if you calculate your costs right, it may make more sense to hire a graphic designer than ask in forums about Photoshop tips.
You are mainly a marketer. Your job is to make stuff work on a given traffic type. You don’t have to be the best designer, or any designer at all. You just have to know what angle to use in your graphics and then tell a designer how to include that.
Same goes with copywriting, translations, web development, and so on.
Work Smart Not Hard
The most hardworking people are not necessarily the richest ones. Taking aside all other factors, effective organization and prioritization are the key factors that make sure that all your hard work doesn’t go to waste.
This doesn’t sound like much, but these tips are like the whole affiliate marketing: small changes at the beginning produce big results at the end. Maybe you are one journal away from hitting a critical mass.
One final advice I would give you is to use a trusted tracker, such as Voluum. It will never fail you and will assist you on your way to greatness.