Mistakes I’ve Made – Don’t Do It All!

A great potential of internet marketing and affiliate marketing is that you are able to make a lot of money being a “one man show.”  In fact, near the start of my internet marketing career I was working about 8 hours a day and was making very decent money.  I also see this type of stuff written on internet marketing blogs all the time discussing how this is a business that you can make a decent chunk of change with only yourself as an employee.  This is true!

I would like to however encourage you to think about how much more your earning potential would be if you weren’t stuck doing a million meaningless tasks that could easy be done by someone else.  Immediately most of you are jumping to a cost in your head about how much you’d have to pay a full time employee, but I implore you to consider the cost of not having an employee.

Having a person that is able to do all the small repetitive tasks that you must handle each day in this business frees you up to focus on more important tasks thus allowing you to expand your earning potential to peaks you never even dreamed possible.

Want even better news?  You don’t have to pay hundreds a week for a full time employee.  There are countries all over this world where $2 – $3 dollars an hour is a lot of money to them.  In fact, I’m currently working with a girl who is working for me part time (20 hours a week) doing content creation and link building whom I’m paying $50 dollars a week salary.

I have used other people for as long as I can remember to help me handle tasks that took too much of my time away from doing what I’m actually good at doing…  Marketing!

Anyone can create landing pages, design blog themes, website themes, gather keywords, prune data, etc.  It’s those that get (understand) marketing that become great internet marketers, so instead of putting your focus on a billion other things, focus on what you are…a marketer!

Leave the rest of the stuff to those that are good at those things, hire a blog designer, a landing page designer, find some cheap help to create content for your websites, etc.  Everyone talks about all the great benefits about working online, working from anywhere, small start up cost, worldwide audience, etc.

Just don’t forget with a worldwide audience you can find good help at a very affordable price!

Mistakes I’ve Made – Post One

Hey guys, I know it has been for freaking ever since I have posted on this blog and well to be honest, I was going to write a post explaining everything, however, I decided that it was just too much to go in to, so instead I decided to just start posting again and act like nothing ever happened! :P

I have been so busy and have continued to learn so much about affiliate marketing and internet marketing.  I am so appreciative of those that have stayed subscribed to this blog via rss or email and I hope you enjoy this post and that it will help you avoid a mistake I made when starting out working from home.  I plan on writing several posts about mistakes I’ve made over the years of being involved in internet marketing.  How many?  Well, to be honest I don’t know, so we will start at Post One and see how far it goes from there!

So let’s get started!

One of the first mistakes I ever made when it came to affiliate marketing was when I first started out.  Those that have been reading my blog since I started it has most likely read my story several times and know that I immediately found success with my very first affiliate marketing campaign, however, even though I found immediate success, I also ran in to a huge problem.

Success…

Huh?  My first problem was success in affiliate marketing?  Yep, and the reason for this was because I immediately started making $100 dollars a day in profit almost overnight.  I quickly optimized my campaign, and the profit seemed to grow each day beyond my belief!  So what was the problem with that you ask?

Well, believe it or not, I did not prepare for this success and it came at a rough time in my life.  I had been laid off from a steel mill that I was working at and went from making $400 a week to collecting about a $100 a week via unemployment! :/  Needless to say when I started making a $100 a day I got pretty excited.  Instantly my wife and I started going out to eat on an almost every other day schedule, we went out and purchased a brand new car, and started just flat out enjoying the money that was rolling in.

What I should have done however, was reinvest that money back in to my business.  The awesome thing about affiliate marketing is that almost anyone with half a brain can stumble across a campaign that will make you money, however, a downside to this business is that when you are first starting out most people don’t have the knowledge to build a campaign and get it to the point where it consistently brings in revenue for a long period of time!

By taking the money you create and being careful with it and reinvesting it back in your business you ensure that you won’t run in to capital issues when it comes to creating and setting up future campaigns, which is exactly the problem I ran in to!

Because I started spending all the money I was making, when I started my second campaign and it took off like a bat out of hell, I didn’t have the funds to keep it going.  I was spending more money that I had available.  I quickly had to apply for several credit cards and ask friends and family to loan me money.  I was lucky enough to have people in my life that helped me out, however it came at a cost, for the credit cards it wasn’t a huge issue as I just paid them off at the end of each month, but for several of the loans I took I made deals to pay them a fee for allowing me the short term loan.  Whereas if I hadn’t been foolishly wasting my money, I would of been making pure profit from my campaigns.

This post isn’t a huge wake up and smell the coffee type post and to most of you it may seem like common sense.  For me…I got excited and hopefully this post will stop another person from making the same mistake I did!

Make sure you add me to your RSS feed as I’ll be sharing other mistakes I’ve made, some that have cost me thousands of dollars!!!

Setting Limits on Distractions Part Two

If you haven’t read the first post about Setting Limits on Distractions I’d suggest you read that first as this post continues that one.

So now that we’ve set hours and we’ve learned how important it is not to use your job as an excuse, the next thing I want to talk about is when you are actually working and how to set limits on things that could distract you while your working.

Email

Email is great! In fact, it’s probably the number one way that I communicate with people I work with…even more so than Social Media or Instant Messaging networks.  While email is great for business and essential, it can become distracting.  If you are anything like myself, I probably get close to fifty emails a day!

I love receiving emails from people and I try to respond to every single one of them, but the bottom line is that I’ve realized I can’t send a paragraph or two email back to every single person that writes to me.  It’s just not possible for me to do it!  There is just too much, so much in fact that I could spend most of the day responding to each one and I’d still keep falling behind!

So how do you do it then?  Well, I don’t really think there is a great way, I think you just have to admit defeat haha!  I try to write back to as many people as possible, and I even have a folder saved on my computer with answers to questions that I get all the time that I can simply copy and paste in to an email and send whenever I get asked that question.

Mostly, I’ve learned to simply hit the delete button on some emails instead of trying to answer them all…

Instant Messaging

This is probably one of the biggest distractions for affiliate marketers or any internet marketer that exists when they are working.

I use to be horrible at this!  I use to have my instant messaging program up all day long while I worked and even if I was just on doing recreational stuff online, I’d have it open.  I’d be chatting with people online all day long everyday!  It was a huge distraction!

Eventually I had to learn to set hours for having IM up, and now I don’t even do that, I only get on for about a hour late in the evening.  The funny thing is you hear people talk about how much networking helps them, and that’s their excuse for keeping their IM programs open, but guess what, I haven’t noticed a drop in revenue since I’ve quit using it…now my friends simply send me an email…

imagine that… haha!

Statistics

Another thing I see affiliates get hung up on is all the stats that are out there, it’s so easy to start looking at your stats with the affiliate network and offers your using, your Google Analytic  stats, split testing stats, heat map stats, etc, etc, etc that before you realize it, you spent the day looking at stats and never actually applied those stats on anything that will help you grow!

Stats are great and they are the key to affiliate marketing, but if you are always looking at stats and never putting those stats to use, it does you absolutely not good!  Glance at your stats then make the changes you need to make where ever you need to make them!

Conclusion

There are so many more distractions when it comes to working from home, but those are the ones that I think can take most of your time and are the most common for all affiliates.  If you have any others, I’d love to hear about them in the comments and also give us an example of how you don’t allow them to become distractions!

Thank You Sponsors – April 2010

Thank You SignatureHey guys, I’d like to take a minute and thank all of  those who sponsored this blog this month.  Without them, there wouldn’t be regular updates here!  So, do me a favor and check them out if you haven’t yet!

SEO Intelligence – Get a free trial account today by following the link!

EWA Private Network – EWA is an affiliate network that is by invite only, but is opening up their doors for a while to allow all affiliates a chance to join!

Direct CPV – Need affiliate traffic?  Need it cheap? Direct CPV sells CPV and PPV traffic!  Use code JMB25A for $25 bonus!

Are you interested in seeing your message here?  Find out more about purchasing a banner ad or sponsored post on Click Consultants by visiting our advertising page!

Here are some other products and services I recommend:

LocalLeadPlan - My buddy Chad wrote a great guide on local affiliate marketing also called local lead generation!

Aweber – This is hands down the best software for email marketing (collecting emails).

MarketLeverage – One of my favorite affiliate networks!

Again, thanks to everyone that makes this blog possible!  That includes both sponsors and my readers that support them!

PS: Don’t forget to check back tomorrow for the second part of Setting Limits on Distractions!

Setting Limits on Distractions Part One

A Distracted Guy

One of the biggest factors that keeps me from completing work that I know I need to complete is… other people!

While there are so many great benefits to working from home, there is one huge disadvantage!  That disadvantage is that no one else seems to realize that you do indeed… Work!

I’m sure this is something that most of you experience or have experienced in the past with family members and friends, however, I’ve come to realize one important thing about this phenomenon that I’d like to share with you today.

As much as we like to blame other people for the things that we don’t get done, it’s not entirely their fault!

I know I know I can hear you know… they should respect that you are working, give you your space, not interrupt you, show you some respect…blah blah blah!!!  The bottom line is that it’s your job to set limits on distractions that will inevitably come your way as a work from home entrepreneur.

I can’t even begin to express to you the number of times that I’ve been working hard on a new website, updating content, or working on an affiliate project and I’d get that phone call…my dad asking me to help him with something, or my wife (now ex-wife) needing me to do something for her, or even my daughter when she’d interrupt me.  It’s frustrating!

Of course I’m not trying to be a prude about it, and there are times that I welcome the interruptions, especially from certain people (like my daughter) however, the problem is that I enjoy helping those around me just as I’m sure that you do, and there are too many times when I ignore what I need to get done in order to help someone else with something that could wait until I have free time.

This is a sure fire way to have your affiliate earnings or websites drop in revenue.  If you’re not careful you’ll constantly have more and more distractions come your way and it will become easier and easier to put off stuff that you must complete in order to take your business forward!

So what are some things you can do to help avoid problems with family and friends?  How can you say “NO” without them getting upset or them feeling like you just don’t’ want to help them?

Set Work Hours!

I just heard the groan…I know lol, one of the greatest benefits to working from home is that you are free to create your own schedule, however, just because you have specific hours set does not mean that you always have to work during those hours!

If something comes up, by all means, change your work schedule for that day and enjoy the time with your family, friends, or other obligations, but by having a set time of when you work, your family and friends will over time become accustomed to you not being available during those times!  And those times that they do call and you are extremely busy you can simply say, sure I can help as soon as I get off work at 4pm! :P

Don’t Use Your Job As An Excuse!

This is pretty self explanatory, but in order to avoid any confusion, let me give an example from my own personal life…

There are going to be times when you simply don’t feel like helping the person that is asking, whether it’s because you are extremely tired or maybe just in a foul mood, it’s imperative that you don’t use your job as an excuse to get out of it, especially if it’s with your spouse or children!

I remember one time my wife was asking me to help her with the dishes and to pick up the house, I didn’t feel like it…at all! So what did I do?  I told her I had some work that needed to get done and needed to be done as soon as possible.  I then retreated to my office, shut the door, and loaded up World of Warcraft (if you don’t know what game that is, your an idiot! Just Kidding!!!).

Of course, no sooner than I started to really get in to it, my wife comes barging in to make sure I was actually working…okay fine she was just trying to be a good wife and bring me something cold to drink…and busted me!

Needless to say the next time I had something important to do and she needed help with something, she didn’t believe me!

So, if you are being asked to do something by someone else and you don’t feel like doing it, then tell them your grandmother died (for the 30th time) and hope they don’t bust you, but never ever use your job as the excuse if it’s not true because when the time comes that you actually need to do something important your family and friends won’t believe you when you need them to!

Stay Tuned

If you’re not subscribed to my RSS feed, I’d suggest you do so now so that I can charge more for advertisements on this…errr actually I mean so that you don’t miss Part Two of Setting Limits on Distractions!