When people make the decision to get into the affiliate marketing industry, they usually do it with a great deal of enthusiasm and high expectations. They see the affiliate marketing business as a means to achieve the life they've always want to live. They see it as a way to be working on something that they have a passion for, being responsible for their own success in making the kind of earnings that will allow them to live the lifestyle that they want for themselves and their family.
These are motivated people and what they want to achieve is absolutely doable.
The first big challenge is getting organized
But by jumping into this endeavor they face a new set of challenges. Many are in the same situation that I was back in 1999 when I first entered the industry. They have daytime jobs that pay the bills and they have to keep those jobs in order to meet their responsibilities.
What this means is they have the same daily commitment in terms of time to their job and they also have the same responsibilities in terms of time to their family. So where do they find time to start your new business?
We all have the same number of hours in a day and the challenge is finding ways to accomplish more in the hours we have. You're trying to learn and launch a new business and somehow you have to find a way to squeeze that into the time available. They'll take heart, I did it and you can to. Today, thanks to lessons learned in organization and automation I can take a break and cruise around in my Shelby Cobra replica just about anytime I want. Hopefully by the end of this article you'll be in a position to organize your business and enjoy the same kind of benefits.
Two basic approaches
Well the key to finding that time is organization. If you go about every task in your business in an organized fashion you'll find that you’re squeezing extra minutes and hours out of each day that you didn't know you had. The more time you spend building and marketing your business rather than dealing with administrative tasks and catastrophes, the faster you'll be a success.
There are really two ways to approach getting more out of your time. The first is a planned and organized work routine, and the second is to take advantage of tools that can automate many tasks. Over the next few paragraphs I'm going to share with you some tips and tools that have saved me an incredible amount time.
The way you work
Let's start with your workplace. When you made the decision to get into affiliate marketing you probably already had a workplace. It's where you did the bills, read the mail, balanced your checkbook and did all those other little household tasks. Odds are your workspace is a kitchen or dining room table or maybe a coffee table the living room.
Now it's time to think the workplace as being a different kind of place. It has to be somewhere where the distractions are minimal and it has to be a place where the rest of the family realizes that this is where mom or dad works. That means that when he or she is in the space the rest the family doesn't interrupt with complaints about Bobby pushing Billy.
And what you work with
Now that you have your space, let’s talk about your equipment. Don't go cheap on the chair. Your desktop can be a piece of plywood held up by cinderblocks but if you use a chair that does not give you proper support you're going to find yourself with back problems.
You absolutely need a decent fast speed Internet connection. If your pages are still slow in loading you may want to consider increasing the amount of RAM in your computer. In most computers you can double the amount of RAM for less than $50.
Don't spend a ton of money at the office supply store. New business people are like a kid in a candy shop when it comes to office supplies. However, those supplies that you do by make sure you have an efficient method to store and use them.
The big timesavers
There are literally hundreds of tasks that you do every day that are repetitive. For example ensuring your username and password on a sign in sheet, filling out online forms including your e-mail address and physical address or simply typing in a URL to the site you visit frequently. All these tasks can be automated. Let me share with you a few of my favorites:
- WordPress – for affiliate marketers this website platform is ideal. For do-it-yourselfers learning how to set up WordPress website is amazingly simple. But the big advantages are the ease of operation, the site architecture which Google loves, incredible features that are available as plug-ins and the fact is fully supported. WordPress is a good choice for your first affiliate marketing website.
- RoboForm – this is another great little piece of software that automates usernames and passwords. Once you have set up it will automatically enter your username and password on a sign in sheet and then click enter for you. It can also automatically fill out online forms save you a ton of time.
- PageLeap – this time-saving tool is actually a start page. Whenever you open a browser PageLeap is going to appear. I love starting an Internet session with this page for two reasons. First, PageLeap takes the place of your book mark tab. You can have as many categories as you like and each category can have up to 20 links under it. She could have a tab for analytics, another for your social media sites, your own websites, financial sites like your bank or stock account and you can have up to 20 links under each of these categories. Your navigation is now reduced to a simple click on one page. No more entering URLs to your favorite sites. The second reason I really like it is because you have the ability to post your goals at the top of the page. In other words is a reminder of why you're in business and what your objectives are. It's a great boost keep you going.
- Carbonite – your safety deposit box for all of your files. Carbonite automatically uploads any new file or any file that's been adjusted or modified to a secure Internet storage facility. This means we're computer crashes, and chances are it will, you won't be spending days try to re-create all of your files. Just download them from Carbonite to your new computer and you're back in business.
- Skype – this is a must-have. Skype provides you the ability to talk to anyone anywhere in the world on a one-on-one basis or in a conference call mode. It also has a chat and a video call capability.
- Pamela – this is an add-on to Skype that allows you to record conversations, conference calls or podcasts.
- Snag it – this is another must have. If you've tried managing or formatting images you already know how long it takes. Snag it is absolutely amazing when it comes to image management. You can snag an image, crop it, insert text or graphics and you can do it all on the fly. If scraper screen captures as well. You capture an entire screen or portion of the screen or even a single image on the screen. Snag is a great tool for creating presentation videos as well.
Now the one thing that all of these programs require is some setup time on your part. These are smart tools but they don't know your username, password, e-mail address, phone number or physical address until you tell them. So this weekend rather than watching those videos on WordPress themes for small business, take the time to get these tools and load them up with the information they require.
My wife Arlene and I absolutely love the lifestyle we live today thanks to our ability to work from home. We have so much more freedom in terms of how we use our time. Think about it for a moment, when's the last time you were able to volunteer as a chaperone on your kids’ field trip or just popped out to have a cup of coffee with a friend?
But regardless of how great the potential is, how many benefits that are available from working at home you will be seeing them unless you're organized. The better organize you are, the faster you become a success.
James Martell is a recognized leader in the affiliate marketing business. James and his wife Arlene founded and co-host the longest-running affiliate marketing podcasts show on the Internet. James is frequently sought after as a speaker for industry conventions and seminars. James, Arlene and therefore kids call a seaside suburb of Vancouver BC home