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  1. #1
    Newbie Craig Mattice's Avatar
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    January 23rd, 2008
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    Your insight on reflection, redirection, learning IM/AM
    I started my Internet/Affiliate Marketing journey back at the end of March with a zero base of knowledge. Time invested is no challenge and I have done that in my learning process involving quality, proven material, forums, tutorials. No "guru" training stuff for newbies.

    I have reached a point of being totally "bogged down" in the process and feel like I'm in a quick sand of trying to make things work. Meaning, having to learn from a zero base of knowledge the elements necessary to perform keyword searches, SEO, determine a niche, buy a quality effective domain, hosting with Host Gator, learning that, installing WordPress, learning that, attempting to build a website, selecting qualified products, learning ClickBank, and trying to put this all together. Should anything in the "process" not work correctly, that takes me off into a whole new direction to determine the problem, learn about it, and then try and fix it. The huge amount of time this is taking is sucking the life and enthusiasm out of me.

    How can I get back on the effective and productive path of functional affiliate marketing? I feel one learning curve sucks me into another and another, with no end in site to bring an effective website online. Is this process normal? I'm not a perfectionist but I do prefer to have things work as they're suppose to and are described in the tutorials. The challenge of learning about IM/AM, Host Gator, WordPress, Themes and the coordination of all these applications is totally overwhelming.

    I'm learning and experiencing a great deal and actually having fun doing the "process." But it is now getting a tad ridiculous. HELP!

    I'm looking for quality insight, advice, comments, experiences, you are willing to share to get me back on track.

    Thank you for reading this post.

  2. #2
    ABW Ambassador 2busy's Avatar
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    January 17th, 2005
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    When deciding to becoming an affiliate it is a huge help if you've already got a website that you've nurtured and tended, you can add a few links and continue expanding your learning of things you're already familiar with.

    Without that foundation you are learning several disciplines at the same time and each of them interacts with the other. The curve is not endless though it can look that way from the start. To make it worse, a new site takes longer to start getting any returns or building significant traffic. The majority of people in your position grab a template, overoptimize it and run off to AdWords to become wealthy, then notice the details. There are many routes up the mountain and some go off a cliff. The research and learning that you're going through now can pay off and it helps to set small goals so that you can see your progress. Realistic expectations are hard to set when you can't see the whole picture so it helps to have a resource like ABW where others have gone through the same paths you're taking now.

    Reading through old threads (without disturbing their sleep) - asking specific questions in a related topic, the chat room and "Google it!" can be some helpful shortcuts.
    http://www.w3schools.com/ helps you learn the basic construction techniques. Some learning from mistakes should occur too. Come back to your question in 6 months and check your own progress, you might be surprised. Good luck!

  3. #3
    Newbie Craig Mattice's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 2busy
    Without that foundation you are learning several disciplines at the same time and each of them interacts with the other. The curve is not endless though it can look that way from the start.
    This is so true and I don't mind achieving success through failing. My philosophy is to fail fast and often, but forward. I'm quickly learning there is no one single solution as there are many pieces to the puzzle that must be learned and applied.
    Quote Originally Posted by 2busy
    The research and learning that you're going through now can pay off and it helps to set small goals so that you can see your progress. Realistic expectations are hard to set when you can't see the whole picture so it helps to have a resource like ABW where others have gone through the same paths you're taking now.
    I'm taking full advantage of the forums and support of ABW, Warrior Forum, Host Gator Forum, WordPress Codex, and the Theme creators forum. The challenge is the comprehension and application of the linkages.
    Quote Originally Posted by 2busy
    http://www.w3schools.com/ helps you learn the basic construction techniques. Some learning from mistakes should occur too. Come back to your question in 6 months and check your own progress, you might be surprised. Good luck!
    Spoken like someone who has been there, done that, has the T-shirt and video. Am I right?

    Thank you for taking your time to respond and provide your insight, support, and direction.

  4. #4
    ABW Founder Haiko de Poel, Jr.'s Avatar
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    January 18th, 2005
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    Sounds like information overload to me .... Nike said it best - Just Do it.

    Most of the process is doing and tweaking, most fail when they don't adjust or tweak, no one fails by doing. I suggest that you pick a vertical (or niche) whose products you believe in / love and will enjoy seeing everyday while you learn, build and eventually earn.

    I'll also add that the other crucial part of the business that causes affiliate failure is the "jack of all trades" mentality ... techs can't do GUI / graphics, Sales / matrketing guys can't do tech. etc. You'll see some hard heads who either are too cheap, proud, or just ill advised to think that their shooty don't stink. People need to remember that this is a business and it is crucial to manage, delegate and outsource to compensate for your co's / site's weakness. For example I can't make a half assed logo (graphically), but I can tell you what I want in it, how it should look and how to tweak it to perfection ... do I make logos? Hell no, I hire great people with the skills to do it and it works. Many affs don't realize the importance of working with your skill set and maximizing their weaknesses through skilled outsourcers. Most affs ask their friends or family - not someone who is looking at it from a business - READ money making venture - perspective so all you hear is sunshine and lollipops. Worse part is when someone tells them the truth - to help them make more $$ --- they get offended and take it personally.

    So, to recap - get your hands dirty, dig right on in, don't try to do it all, work in a nice you love, review and constantly tweak based on real and honest business advice (that you don't take personally) and stay flexible to trends and market thrusts.
    Continued Success,

    Haiko
    The secret of success is constancy of purpose ~ Disraeli

  5. #5
    ABW Ambassador phillyburbs's Avatar
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    Haiko:

    Spot on. If you need something, you have to determine if 1) you have the skills to do it, 2) you can quickly acquire the skills to do it or 3) you need to find someone else to do it.

    I've made a career out of having a very limited skill set but knowing how to identify talent, determine objectives and manager projects to achieve those objectives. My managers (and the rest of my team) already know it's coming when I say, "OK, pretend I'm a total idiot and have no idea what you're talking about" or "if it were easy, I'd do it myself."


  6. #6
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    Some great advice here already!

    Affiliate marketing has been the most time-consuming & all-encompassing work I have ever done (and I used to work on the trade floor of an investment dealer where performance expectations were VERY high!).

    For what it's worth, it has been my experience that the BUILDING phase feels the most laborious & thankless. And yes, it feels very far removed from the concept of affiliate marketing. However, it has to be done. AM is useless as a theory, you MUST put it into practice. Sooner rather than later.

    As others have said, outsource if you feel the need (I use rentacoder.com for periodic snippets of work). Recognize your weaknesses... but if you have time/patience to learn the tech stuff, go for it. It's a valuable skill to have & will serve you well down the road.

    You're not alone with feelings of being bogged down & overwhelmed... many of us have been there, are currently there, or will be there as soon as a new idea hits!

    As the saying goes... "this journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step"

    Welcome to the world of affiliate marketing.. hard work but incredibly rewarding when it succeeds

  7. #7
    Newbie Craig Mattice's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Haiko de Poel, Jr.
    Sounds like information overload to me .... Nike said it best - Just Do it.
    Yes! I agree 100% and have taken the bull by the horns physically applying what I'm learning today, building on what I've learned from yesterday.
    Most of the process is doing and tweaking, most fail when they don't adjust or tweak, no one fails by doing. I suggest that you pick a vertical (or niche) whose products you believe in / love and will enjoy seeing everyday while you learn, build and eventually earn.
    Ah! I've accomplished this, selected an interesting niche and two additional sub-niches in a well producing market of buyers. The product and market I deal in everyday and it makes me happy.
    I'll also add that the other crucial part of the business that causes affiliate failure is the "jack of all trades" mentality ... Hell no, I hire great people with the skills to do it and it works. Many affs don't realize the importance of working with your skill set and maximizing their weaknesses through skilled outsourcers.
    This concept of success I fully understand but currently am missing the resources to expedite the process. I have to admit, I'm enjoying the overall learning process, as frustrated as I may get with myself.
    So, to recap - get your hands dirty, dig right on in, don't try to do it all, work in a nice you love, review and constantly tweak based on real and honest business advice (that you don't take personally) and stay flexible to trends and market thrusts.
    I'm a big believer in hands-on experience. I expect to fail fast, fail often, and fail forward for best results. At the same time taking advantage of the knowledge and experiences of others who are successful and not being concerned about looking ignorant for asking questions.

    Thank you all for your priceless support, advice, and guidance. I will clear my head, agenda, and preconceptions, develop a plan, and move forward one focused step at a time.

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