Affiliate marketing continues to be one of the most prominent forms of earning money online. While this field still enjoys a robust yet somewhat silent existence, there are many pitfalls newbies to affiliate marketing should research and understand. After years as a successful affiliate marketer, here I will shed some light on the more common myths within this somewhat competitive market.

What is affiliate marketing?

In its most basic definition, affiliate marketing is when a publisher or product supplier enlists the aid of marketers to help create sales. A portion of the profits earned are then paid to that marketer for their time and effort. The affiliate marketer simply brings the supplier more customers and gains a commission.

Myth 1: Affiliate Marketing is Easy.

One of the benefits of affiliate marketing is that it is a win-win-win situation. The affiliate promoting sales or providing marketing service makes a profit, the supplier makes a profit and the consumer, hopefully, is able to purchase and enjoy what it is they were seeking. So, all things being equal, all three parties involved are happy. This sounds easy enough. But, let’s look at the affiliate marketing model a bit closer.

In order to create sales for the company you are representing, you must be able to create the most needed commodity on the Internet – traffic. You either create this traffic by “natural” search engine optimization or someone else already has the traffic and you must pay a premium for it. If you’re not an experienced web marketer, you are likely to drop a load of cash before you know it and create only a few sales. Traffic is the lifeblood of affiliates.

Myth 2: You can make five figures per month with affiliate marketing.

Yes, there are several “master” affiliate marketers on the Net doing exactly this. But, this indeed is not the norm. The majority of affiliate marketers simply make a few bucks per week and certainly not enough to quit their day job and perform this service full-time.

Many webmasters or design gurus simply use affiliate marketing as a means to supplement other income. I usually have at least one affiliate banner on each page of my websites. These websites are generally promoting a main theme or were simply built to sell advertising space. Regardless, I certainly don’t earn six figures per month in this manner. But, this is simply one form of advertising. There are far greater methods that can reach thousands almost immediately.

Myth 3: There are no good residual income affiliate marketing programs.

Perhaps this was once true, but there are indeed a few gems on the Net today. You simply must do your homework and find the ones that will continue to provide you with income day after day after you have done the work initially. Residual income online is certainly the most efficient use of your time and can free you up to discover other money making business opportunities or simply spend some quality time with the family.

Myth 4: You have to have a big list to succeed in affiliate marketing.

Well, if you do have access to a well-established subscription list (within the niche of the product you are promoting,) chances are high that you will do quite well and create massive profits. This being said, it is certainly not a requirement. I have purchased access to lists or simply shared profits with the list owners. This is a viable alternative to maintaining your own list. Additionally, there are other aspects to web marketing other than having “the list”.

Myth 5: Even with the best product, I’ll spend a fortune on advertising.

Again, this comes down to being able to affordably place advertising in profitable arenas. It’s all about knowledge, but you don’t have to be a rocket scientist. I, and many other certified media placement specialists know the value and increased profit margins available within affiliate marketing when the proper media venues are accessible. I can, and do, easily teach many daily how to effectively market any product. If you can cut and paste, you can learn to eventually earn a comfortable living as an affiliate.

Affiliate Marketing Coaching

Having dispelled what I consider the top five myths of marketing, to truly succeed you need to find a product that pays a sizeable commission and is easy to duplicate. Coaching and support staff available by phone is a tremendous advantage that probably more than 95% of affiliate programs lack. Instructions are usually difficult to follow IF provided at all. There is work involved in becoming successful in using media advertising, but well worth the educational process when you consider the results and long-term benefits. Don’t let the myths scare you. Educate yourself and reap the rewards!