The Naked Truth – Affiliate Marketing “Stripped Bare”

September 17, 2009 | By | 26 Replies More
The Naked Truth

The Naked Truth

This is a post that has been a long time coming. I think. I just didn’t know that it had to come out already!

I am having a hard time finding good and valuable information which I want to share here with you, information which hasn’t already been said on countless other blogs ofย  much more advanced Internet Marketers than me. Internet Marketers that are having success online. That can write and captivate their audience. Simply people that are much more believable than “old me”.

See, I started looking into “making money online” in September 2007 – just about 2 years ago. At that time I had literally no idea what I was doing and had no computer-/website-/blog-technical knowledge whatsoever. Hell, I had never even heard about the term “Affiliate Marketing” or “Blog”. I had to learn everything from scratch. I fell for literally countless scams, make money online, survey and data entry schemes and overpriced “learn how to make money online” programs.

I learned, had set-backs, paid more money, and spent hours, days, months trying to work out how to earn some cash on the Net because everywhere I was told it was so EASY! The breakthrough always was around the corner.I neglected our home business (ice cream franchise), my children, my friends. I neglected my health and sanity because I stayed up every night till 12 or 1am, absorbing the masses of information thrown at me and trying to make sense of it.

I didn’t give up. I was (still am!) passionate about Internet and Affiliate marketing, and my 2 year efforts have paid off just enough to keep me going. Just…

The Naked Truth #1:

It can take a loooooooooong time before you see any (mentionable) results.

***After 2 years of spending every spare minute online to make some money I am earning between $100 and $250 a month from my online “ventures”. Whooopedoo!

There are many different ideas out there on how you can make money online. One thing I have come to believe (and what the “good guru’s” will let you know, too) is that if you want to be successful online, you need to have a website or blog. I mean, you are on the Web, how do you think you are going to make money if not from a website/blog??? Problem is, you need to find something to blog (or build a website) about that is going to make you money, and then keep researching and updating your creation and drive traffic to it to make it work.

It is also widely believed (in successful bloggers and IM’s circles) that if helps a lot if you have your own personal “Internet marketing blog” where you blog about your journey and successes to riches on the way. Kind of like I have here ๐Ÿ˜‰ย  It’s just, – when you start out, you don’t really know what you are doing. You can’t give great tips to anybody. You are a nobody!!! There are so many others out there with lots more experience and success, how can you compete? So go and rack your brains on what great tips you want to give everybody who happens to stop by your blog and be interested in what you have to say. Sounds harsh? Well, it’s supposed to! That’s how I feel quite often when I am supposed to update my blog here. Sure, I have learned a lot, but it doesn’t seem important enough or “new” enough (I squeal with laughter now – new??) to insult anybody with it. But giving up? NO WAY!

See, there is something you can do to make yourself heard just a little, and to add actual value to your community of readers: Don’t try to be a professional, don’t try to “teach”, but just tell it like it is from your perspective, what you have learned and how it has affected you. Be genuine and be yourself. There will be others out there who still have to get where you are now and who will value what you have to say.

The Naked Truth #2:

You will need a blog or website to make it online. You will have to keep updating it. Do the research. Learn. Write posts. Generate traffic. It’s all hard yakka. It takes a lot of time. No “easy money” here. At least not for most of us for the first few years.

***I am in a constant state of pressure as I keep thinking “what should I post about next”. Spending valuable time researching topics. Trying to create backlinks to my blogs by commenting on other blogs, being active in forums, writing articles, creating squidoo lenses

Let’s face it, most of us start off by doing it part-time, in our spare time, at night after a full days work. We’ve got all these ideas and expectations, and then we become disappointed if any form of success takes too long. Well, here is my advice: – Suck it up, and keep going! And if you lose your drive or interest, or it becomes all too hard for you, then it might be time to say Good-Bye to the dream of making it big online. Because

The Naked Truth #3:

To be successful here you need stamina, and you need to be driven and passionate. You need to be ready to sacrifice your free time. Internet Marketing needs to become your favorite hobby.If you don’t think you can do it – don’t.

We are also tempted to try different systems, whatever we come across that sounds viable should be tested as we might be missing the program that might actually deliver us the easy online riches we desire. It’s every Affiliate and Internet Marketers biggest downfall – the variety and bombardment of opportunities and information online. We stop focusing on what we have to do and jump from this to that and back and forth, ultimately achieving nothing. So here it is, the

The Naked Truth #4:

To make it in Internet /Affiliate Marketing you need to be organized, disciplined and have a clear focus on what you need to do next, and what your steps are to achieve your goal. Nobody else will get you organized or make sure you stay on track. It’s up to you, and you alone! Remember: You are trying to be your own boss here, so you have to live up to it!

***I am far from focused, organized or disciplined, otherwise I would already be earning a lot more than a measly $100 – $250 a month, believe me! The amount I am earning is a direct result of how focused, organized and disciplined I have applied myself to my home business so far. I might spend countless hours on the computer fooling myself, but I am not being productive. ๐Ÿ™

If focus and discipline are one of your downfalls, too, there is a fantastic video you should watch, created by no other than Eben Pagan. I am not telling you that it is magically going to solve your problems for you, but it will give you insights in what you can do to help you along with being more focused and productive. I think I will have to watch it a few more times! ๐Ÿ˜‰ Improve your productivity dramatically

Are you turned off yet? Don’t be – what I want to do with this post is to let you know that Affiliate Marketing is no road to “easy money”. I don’t want anybody to go on and think that you can make money easily through Affiliate Marketing. So don’t quit your day job over it just yet! It takes time, it takes effort, it takes discipline and much more. Am I disillusioned? You bet! Am I ready to give up? NO WAY!!!!!

The fun only starts now….

  1. Affiliate Marketing is FUN!
  2. Affiliate Marketing will make you money, once everything falls into place. Just DON’T GIVE UP!
  3. Affiliate Marketing is a journey of discovery and learning, and personal development.
  4. As we learn, we will get better at it, which will lead to success!

I personally love Affiliate Marketing, for me it has been a roller coaster ride all the way. Up and down, and around, and the amount I have learned about Affiliate and Internet marketing, and about building websites and other technical things, is amazing. I know I am not there yet, but I can see different things working. It might take a long long time to get to where I want to be, but I will not give up and I know I will get there eventually. It is all a matter of sticking with it, andย being aware what Affiliate Marketing can or can’t do, and what is involved to make it work. We shouldn’t be scared or put off or disappointed, instead we should look at what we have achieved so far, and how we can improve on it. Keep learning, keep exploring, and if something works, great, build up on it! Keep going!

Phew, I have exhausted myself writing this post! But I had to get it off my chest. Affiliate Marketing is a great way of making money online, but you need to be aware that it’s not going to be overnight. It requires a lot of hard work and dedication, and then some more. But if you stick with it, you will reap the rewards eventually. I know I will! ๐Ÿ˜‰

Off to have a coffee
icon now, tada!

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Category: Info Overload and Productivity, My Internet Marketing Progress

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Comments (26)

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  1. Syed Akram says:

    Thanks for long advice and tips. I look fwd to hear more of your success story in the future. As you said it will take sometimes…
    .-= Syed Akram´s last blog ..Most Useful Software Tools for Internet Marketers =-.

  2. Housewives says:

    Hi Petra, I definitely agree with you on those naked truth about making money online. Like me, I’ve spent countless of time and money to buy lots of learning ebook about “making money online” back in 2007.

    Making money online ain’t working overnight but it need persistent and consistency. But why there are so many failure, it may due to information overloaded.

    When I just started, I tried ebay, affiliate marketing, dropship, MLM and so much stuff and at the end, none of them work.. now I just realized what’s my failure… is.. FOCUS.

    Just sharing ๐Ÿ˜‰

  3. John Tanner says:

    Hi Petra,

    Excellent post Petra and I think newbies like myself need to be told that internet marketing isn’t as easy as the Guru’s and emails suggest.

    I know I’m guilty of wasting time trying out the latest idea and scheme that hits my inbox. Maybe it’s time to unsubscribe myself from many of the fellow students lists to avoid distraction.
    (I’d be interested on your opinion on that).

    I’ve also noticed that many of the Alex Jeffreys students aren’t updating their blogs as often as before. Not sure if people are finding the lack of results disappointing or are waiting to develop usefull content.

    But like yourself, I’ll keep going and hopefully share the tactics that work when I find them.

    Bye for now,
    .-= John Tanner´s last blog ..Finding Long Tail Keywords =-.

    • Petra Weiss says:

      @John, I have noticed a slow down in the forum over at Alex’s Coaching Program too. But I think what’s happened is that everybody has now realized (after the first few weeks of hyperactivity) that this is actually all hard work, and as I say in my post, the results can take a long time to start appearing. Also, everybody has got “a life after Internet Marketing”, and most of us might be caught up again in the daily grind of other things that need doing. I mean, I don’t think there are many that are doing this full time. Most of us are doing it part time, or just at night, and you gotta run out of steam at some point!

  4. Jacinta Dean says:

    Hi Petra,

    Awesome, honest and very TRUE post! I can so relate to you and your experience with internet marketing as you have stated.

    The naked truths you have mentioned are true! And it is definitely one thing that the big guru’s do not tell you when you are starting out!

    I just went to an internet seminar last weekend. The speakers were excellent and there was great information but they did do the whole hype thing of earning great money really fast.

    Maybe they can do it really fast now because they have the joint venture partners and because they have the massive list etc etc. But they do forget to tell you that in the very very beginning it does take a lot of time and energy to work online.

    I have a saying I remind myself of everyday, “The tortoise always wins the race” plus I have a little tortoise on my desk to remind me that now matter how slow I am I will get there eventually! ๐Ÿ˜€

    Stay positive and stay focused. To achieve what you are doing now is awesome, it can only get better. It is the momentum that counts even if you only do a couple of hours a week, it is still progress!

    Thank you for your honesty and for your truth about how you feel about internet marketing as an online business.

    Kind Regards

    Jacinta ๐Ÿ™‚
    .-= Jacinta Dean´s last blog ..Internet Marketing Daily Tasks! =-.

    • Petra Weiss says:

      @Jacinta, thanks so much for your kind comment! I had to head over to your blog and have a little snoop around, and I left a comment for you, too! You seem to be in Australia like me, I like that! Yes, I found it very hard to break into Internet marketing. But like you I am like a tortoise, or maybe even a snail ๐Ÿ˜‰ and I won’t give up!! At the moment I find it very hard to sit down at night and do anything other than watching TV, – which means my pace has just slowed down even more. But again, you said it, staying positive and focused is the key to success.

  5. Vance Sova says:

    Hi Petra,

    I admire your complete honesty in this post.

    The naked truth is quite ugly and that is why the gurus don’t usually talk about it.

    Quite frankly if they did, they’d be shooting themselves in the foot.
    Their success would have to take a dramatic dive.

    People in general want to hear what they want to believe.
    A good example can be found in politics. Honest and truthful politicians aren’t successful and don’t last very long either.

    People prefer good sounding lies to the harsh truths.

    Internet marketing gurus aren’t usually lying but they omit mentioning things that might discourage their prospective customers.

    (Lies appear strangely in IM commercials).

    Back to your naked truth.

    There is so much to learn and so much to do as you say that there is no way it could ever be called easy.

    This is why 95% of people never make it in internet or affiliate marketing.

    Only people with dogged determination that never give up have a chance.

    And you are definitely one of them.

    You are most certainly more than 80% of the way there.

    I’m following behind you at maybe 50% or half the way there so to give up now for any of us would be a crime.

    Thank you for sharing the real stuff as opposed to just sweet sounding talk.

    Last night I just about fell off the couch when I turned the TV on late night (don’t really watch that much but just to wind down before going to bed) when I saw an infomercial on making money online.

    It went something like this: about 10 testimonials , actual people or actors saying they’re making from 30,000 to 115,000 dollars PER MONTH and they kept saying it is very easy you don’t have to know anything about computers blah, blah, blah.

    People who participate in that kind of deception should be locked up in jail.

    End of rant.

    .-= Vance Sova´s last blog ..List Building Steps, Step 2 โ€“ Make Free Opt-in Offer =-.

    • Petra Weiss says:

      @Vance, I get angry now when I hear things like that. It’s a complete lie by omission, and I believe I have been through them all. You need to rant sometimes, it helps!

  6. I almost stopped my affiliate marketing. After reading this post I am thinking of starting it with new plans

  7. Tess says:

    Petra – FANTASTIC post! I could have written this myself. I started about 3 years ago, and after two years began earning an average of $400 to $600 per month with affiliate marketing. Then, out of nowhere my niche hit me – ghostwriting! I now make more money than I ever dreamed possible, but if I had stuck only with affiliate marketing, I probably would have still been plugging along. I still do it on the side – seems kind of addicting! Thanks so much:)

    • Petra Weiss says:

      @Tess, you are doing fantastic with your Affiliate marketing! And I definitely have to check out your ghostwriting service – might need some soon!

  8. Stefan says:

    To be honest between $100 and $250 a month sounds really low after two years work. Have you analysed your sites to see exactly what you miss?

    – Do you have traffic?
    – Do you monetize it?

    Personally I think the simple methods are the best. Create a good looking blog and write new content. Comment others blogs and when you have some high quality content you simply start to write guest posts on blogs with more visitors.

    If you only have a schedule and goals I actually think it is simple tasks, but it takes some times and a lot of work.
    .-= Stefan´s last blog ..Organize Google Reader =-.

    • Petra Weiss says:

      @Stefan, I agree with you, it is low, but I have literally 5 – 10 minutes at a time to work on things before I get interrupted, which on some days might add up to 1 or 2 hours, and in that time I have to learn and educate myself, too. But I have to admit that I have been heavily sidetracked and “information overloaded” at times, that’s why my progress (and earnings) are so low. Mind you, my one site that is making me the money is on page #1 of Google for several search terms. I intend to duplicate this kind of site now and move on from there. But thanks for your honest feedback. Very much appreciated.
      BTW, it seems that blogs don’t work that much for me – the constant updating is too much of a hassle for me, I don’t get around to do it often enough.

  9. Stefan says:

    I would say it depends on what kind of meaning you have on the word blog. For me I would say my niche sites has turned out the best. They are basic WordPress blogs, with the difference that I only update them once or twice every month. It’s enough to keep them “active” for search engines while you do not have to spend to much time on on them.
    .-= Stefan´s last blog ..How to Automatically Back Up Your Computer =-.

  10. Backlinking with Squidoo and Hubpages can be frustrating. If your pages don’t increase in ranking, all your links are left as nofollow and that does nothing to help you generate backlinks.
    Article marketing is a lot easier with GoArticles. Ezine’s waiting time gets on my nerves.
    .-= Udegbunam [email protected] Of Tips´s last blog ..Optimize CSS & Speed Up Blogger Blog Load Time! =-.

  11. Marbou says:


    Nice post. You are really right. I was learning about affiliate marketing since 2006 and still no success yet. However, I’m still not quitting and try different ways and keep learning.

    Some results are there. I can make good sites for my other business (school and importing merchandise). Despite they are not subject to be an affiliate marketing, but I can communicate with students, teachers, and parents thru the website. The website is also good product information from importing merchandise since they can see colors and texture of the product.

  12. Joe says:

    WOW… you hit the “nails” on the heads…

    Your post resonates with me as I have had many ups and downs trying to make a buck marketing affiliate products.

    The irony is my true passion (blog not to be mentioned) gets 300 – 1000 visits a day but… the traffic does not translate to sales.

    BUT… the subject and topics are so vital (in my mind) that I continue to research and post on the topic.

    Meanwhile, my second passion online is marketing and SEO so I spend time on sites (like yours) that target marketing.

    Petra, you are on the right track and I wish you great success with this blog.


    PS I just started using KeywordLuv and not sure how the results will be on my blogs… but it brought me here and I joined your list. ๐Ÿ™‚
    .-= [email protected] X Review´s last blog ..Affiliate X Review: Proof of Income Potential =-.

    • Petra Weiss says:

      @Joe, I wish you much success in your online ventures, too, and hopefully one day you will be seeing more sales with the many visitors you get. Have you got Adsense on your high trafficked site? Thanks for joining my list!

  13. Calvin says:

    Focus is good, but a little bit of diversification can really save your butt. For example, two years ago, I concentrated on using Google Adwords for affiliate marketing. Unfortunately, they slowly shut down all the strategies available to affiliate marketers. My income basically dropped to zero. This happened just a few months after I quit my job to go full time into IM. I was forced to find alternative means of making money online.

    So I switched to (more or less) free marketing techniques – blogging, SEO, niche sites, Squidoo, article marketing, bum marketing, etc. Much less focus, but when Ezinearticles changed policies, when Squidoo changed policies, when Google changed search algorithms, etc I wasn’t hit as badly as before. I didn’t lose all my income, just some of it.
    .-= [email protected] Rig Jobs´s last blog ..Oil Drilling Rig Jobs – Why Look For Entry Level Roustabout Jobs And Offshore Drilling Rig Jobs? =-.

    • Petra Weiss says:

      @Calvin, you are right, you shouldn’t put all your eggs in one basket. I think niche marketing with income from Google Adsense and other physical products through ebay, Amazon etc. is a good mix.

  14. monika says:

    affiliate marketing really very helpful in making money online.recently i started this program and i was searching for quality of information thanks to you for sharing this truth with the readers.thanks learned lot here.

  15. Seb says:

    More great info. I’m having fun checking all your blogs. I was going to do one about follow me and see the mistakes I make.
    Seb recently posted…Palm Tree Decor AccessoriesMy Profile

  16. Backlinking with Squidoo and Hubpages can be frustrating. If your pages donโ€™t increase in ranking, all your links are left as nofollow and that does nothing to help you generate backlinks. The post really helped, thanks.
    Interesting Stories recently posted…Stalker Makes 65,000 Calls In A YearMy Profile

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