On the one hand, it is incredibly easy to get started with affiliate marketing – all you need is a reasonably modern computer or tablet PC and an Internet connection.
On the other hand, the vast majority of people who try to start an affiliate marketing business fail within the first year. The low barrier to entry is both a blessing and a curse.
If you want to succeed at affiliate marketing, then you will need to have a sound business plan and a clear strategy.
If you understand the world of SEO and marketing then you have an advantage over a lot of people who try to get started in the industry, but if you do not then you could find yourself floundering quite quickly.
The best way to get past the stage where you “don't know what you don't know” is to hire an affiliate marketing coach.
What Can an Affiliate Marketing Coach Do For You?
An affiliate marketing coach is a lot like a sports coach.
They offer both short and long term practical guidance as well as management in a more philosophical sense too. A good coach will have a proven, effective blueprint for affiliate marketing.
This blueprint will include everything that you need to get started – from how to structure your website to which SEO techniques to use and what approach to take with your mailing list. They won't go so far as to write your sales copy for you, but they will show you how other people have succeeded and help you as you try to emulate that success by looking at what works and adding your own unique twist to it.
The biggest benefit offered by an affiliate marketing coach, however, is accountability. During those early stages of building your business it is easy to feel demoralized. Traffic peaks and tails off quickly, you get a couple of sales one day then nothing for a week – this is normal, but it can be stressful to deal with.
A good affiliate marketing coach will be on hand to act as a sounding board when you need them, and will also call you to check up on your progress periodically. It's easy to lie to yourself, but it is much harder to let down a third party that is invested in your success. No matter how motivated you are, there will be occasions when that motivation wanes, and you will be glad to have someone to push you on those days.
A Fresh Perspective
Another thing that a qualified and experienced coach offers is a fresh perspective. If your pages aren't converting as well as you like, or your engagement figures are low no matter what you post, then you may find that having someone else take a look at your efforts may be beneficial.
When you spend a lot of time working on a website, mailing list, sales page or social media profile it is only natural to become blind to obvious flaws and problems. You can give yourself a fresh perspective simply by taking a break for a day or two, but having someone knowledgeable and experienced available to take a look at your work for you is always beneficial.
Finding an Affiliate Marketing Coach
There are a lot of experienced affiliate marketing coaches out there. Some coaches specialise in a specific niche, while others offer more general advice that caters to almost all niches. Some coaches run large group courses, while others take on a handful of people to mentor at any one time, and limit the number of people they work with so that they can give each person a lot of attention.
Talk to a few coaches and try to find one that suits your personality and your working style. The mentor-student relationship is a complex one and you need to find a coach that you feel comfortable and confident in working with.
Having a good coach will greatly increase your chances of succeeding in the world of affiliate marketing. If you can start to turn a profit in your first year, then the chances of building a sustainable long-term business increase dramatically.