Affiliate marketing guide
Saturday, April 29, 2006 at 11:14AM
Joel

There are lots of ways to make money on the Internet. None are trivial. None are free. All require some investment - money, work, time - and usually a combination of all three.

The good news is: So does every other money-making opportunity - and  many Internet opportunities are cheaper and easier. Just not free - and not trivial.

I agree with many of the gurus: The simplest and lowest-cost way to get started is as an affiliate marketer.

What's that? You become an affiliate for someone who has a product to sell. Essentially, you are a commissioned salesperson.

People who have affiliate programs pay you 30% and up if someone you direct to them buys their product.

Good things about being an affiliate:

* You don't have to produce a product
* You don't have to deliver a product
* You don't have have a merchant account, or collect payments
* You can be an affiliate, usually at no cost, for a number of products
* If you are selective, you don't have to produce your own ad copy, banners, etc.

The challenges:

* You have to find people who might buy the product or service
* You have to get their attention ("pre-sell," as Ken Evoy calls it)
* This takes work.

Now, you can embark on this career with zero cash outlay. There's tons of free information out there - for example, go to http://www.joelsarticles.com and do a search for "affiliate." You'll get back many free articles.

But if you go that route, you will spend weeks - maybe months - floundering around, trying to figure out "which end is up."

If you are serious about checking out this possibility, I recommend James Martell's "Affiliate Marketers Handbook." (Go to http://joelsarticles.com/recommends/Martell to check it out.) It is much more than a book; it is a complete course, that tells you all you need to get started in affiliate marketing.

The price is not cheap; if you are completely broke, or looking for freebies, don't even go to the website (http://joelsarticles.com/recommends/Martell).

But if you compare the cost of this complete course, which spells out in detail the 8 steps you must take to succeed with affiliate programs on the net, to ANY OTHER course or business startup, you will find it is incredibly inexpensive.

Of course, James offers a 100%-money-back 60-day guarantee, and a ton of useful bonuses, so there is really no risk at all to check it out.

This is a start-from-nothing guide; you need not know anything at all about computers, marketing, or affiliates. James tells you everything, step by step.

Once again: This is not free. Don't bother going to http://joelsarticles.com/recommends/Martell unless you are serious about checking out becoming an affiliate marketer.

I'd appreciate your letting me know what you learn, if you decide to check this out. I believe it's a great opportunity and an excellent value. If I'm wrong, I'd like to know. Please write me at joel.orr@gmail.com.

Article originally appeared on Joel Orr's World of Technology|CADCAM|PLM (http://joelorr.squarespace.com/).
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