14
Oct

Affiliate Confession Reaches 500 RSS Subscribers

A huge thanks goes out to every one today who is a subscriber to Affiliate Confession. After almost a year of writing, this blog has reach the 500 RSS subscriber milestone. The counter at the top may show an amount below 500 depending on when you read this (it fluctuates a bit at times), but the first time the 500 reader level was reached was on Saturday Oct. 11th.

I initially started the blog back on November 1, 2007 after several months of thinking about it and having my wife tell me that I need to write about what I do. In fact, the name Affiliate Confession was actually my wife’s idea. We we’re sitting around one day brainstorming domain names for the blog and it just suddenly popped out of her brain. I didn’t really do much writing the first month and started blogging consistently on Nov 22, 2007.

One of the catalysts for starting the blog was probably for the wrong reason when I read one of John Chow’s ridiculous income statements. I believe it was around the $23,000 per month mark at the time and I thought why not get in with the crowd and get out there and make some money. That’s not a good reason to start a blog! It has since evolved into something I enjoy doing while I chronicle and hopefully give some advice on what it takes to build a successful affiliate marketing business.

Some of the more memorable posts over the last year include:

Why I don’t Do Network Marketing Or MLM– The first and longest post here at AffiliateConfession.com going into why MLM is mostly a waste of time.

Taking The 30 Day Blogging Challenge – The most commented post here.

Build A Niche Store Review – A review of the product that maximizes earnings from the eBay Affiliate program. It is currently one of my top money makers.

Lessons In Perseverence – A 4 part series on just working through the hard times despite what may come your way.

Build A Niche Store Tutorials – A 7 part series on how to set up your BANS affiliate store and get into profitability with the eBay Partner Network.

Explaining Twitter Is Like Explainig Sex to A Virgin – The day I saw the light and became a Twitter fan. You can follow me on Twitter here.

How I won A MacBook Air– Yes, I actually won $5,000 worth of prizes in an online contest and one of those prizes was a MacBook Air. This post explains how I did it.

The Harsh Realities Of Affiliate Marketing – A 7 part series on what affiliate marketing is really like. It’s not all fun and games, it takes lots of work.

Joined PPC Coach – I’ve finally started making some money with paid search marketing and this post explains how that happened.

If you are new here at AffiliateConfession.com please subscribe to my RSS feed and if you are already a reader of this blog, I appreciate the time you take to read through my ramblings. It’s been great getting to know a lot of you and respond to your questions and comments and I’m looking forward to the continued journey.

PS – As of this writing the count at the top is showing 486 readers and my Feedburner control paned is showing zero subscribers, so I’m not sure where it will end up today.

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22
Jan

NuBody Nutritional Supplement Affiliate Program

NuBody SupplementsI’ve been telling my wife Jean for quite some time that if we could find a nutritional supplement company that wasn’t an MLM, that had an affiliate program, that we could do via the web only, that sold organic supplements with no artificial ingredients in them, then we might check it out and join up.

In setting all those conditions I thought I’d probably never be involved with nutritional supplements again. However, I believe we’ve found such a supplement company and it’s even better than all my conditions required, because it has a multi-tiered affiliate program.

All those conditions have been met in NuBody Supplements. I first read about NuBody in a review on John Chow’s site and I was excited about them because of the completely organic and 100% natural ingredients in all of their products. I have looked at several network marketing companies’ supplements including Melaleuca and others and they contain ingredients such as silicone dioxide and titanium dioxide used as anti-caking agents that I would rather not put into my body. I don’t have to worry about NuBody because none of their nutritionals contain these ingredients.

As I was writing this post I was emailing back and forth with customer service for some more specific information and my questions got passed on to the founder of the company. He emailed me back and this is what he said about their philosophy on those chemicals used in some other supplements:

Hi this is Ken Causey I’m the founder of NuBody Supplements, I would just like to thank you for your interest in our products.  Before I decided I am much happier being an entrepreneur, I was working on a Physics degree focusing on Nanotechnology with a minor in Biology, and while studying towards these degrees I learned a lot about titanium dioxide and other “ingredients” that are found in many major products, and what these really do to the human body. That is why we refuse to use them in any of our products…

We normally take very few supplements because we believe you should always get your nutrition from the food you eat in the form of fresh fruits and vegetables. However, we do realize that there are times such as when traveling or if you just can’t get to the store when a good nutritional supplement is the next best thing.

Nubody Organic Health Multi-VitaminOne of the supplements that caught my eye was NuBody’s Organic Health Mutli-Vitamin that contains a variety of vegetables, grasses, sprouted grains, herbs, anti-oxidants and more. Click on the link above and then click the link that says Click Here To View Ingredients when you get to that page to see everything that goes into these vitamins. They also have a supplement called Brain Control that can help you increase your mental activity and alertness, something I need dearly.

NuBody Affiliate Program

With NuBody you also have a chance to earn some money as an affiliate. For those of us with nutritionally based websites these supplements really are the perfect fit. As an affiliate, you receive 35% commission on the retail sale of their products, plus you get a 5% commission for any affiliates that sign up under your account. And if that’s not enough, you get a monthly commission if people are on autoship and there is a 365 day cookie for any returning visitors. I don’t know of many affiliate programs that are better than that. We are affiliate of VitaminShoppe.com and only get a 10% commission on their supplements.

NuBody Supplements is also running a contest for bloggers and affiliates. If you write a post on any of their supplements or the affiliate program you will be entered in a contest to win one of four prizes that include your choice or either a 8GB iPhone, 16GB iPod Touch, Xbox 360 Elite or a Playstation 3 80GB. You will also get a coupon to receive 50% off your first order. They are also having a contest for the affiliate who sells the highest number of units and the winner will also have their choice of one of the prizes listed above.

NuBody Brain ControlMy Own Contest

I think this is a great opportunity for affiliates to make a nice income and I’ve already joined NuBody’s affiliate program. As soon as I get my coupon for writing this post I’m going to place an order for 2 bottles of Brain Control and give away one bottle valued at $50 to a fortunate reader of Affiliate Confession.

Also, if I were to win one of the contests Nubody is sponsoring I will choose the PlayStation 3 and give it away here on the blog. I’m not really into gaming, so I think it would be a great prize to give away to my readers.

If you are interested in making money with NuBody Supplements you can sign up as an affiliate here.

Alan

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1
Nov

Why I Don’t Do Network Marketing or MLM

This post originally appeared on the Richdad.com forums and on my Blogger blog, but my blog over there was shut down due to inactivity.

So here is the reason I will never get involved in another MLM business again. The post is slightly modified from its original version. Some of the references in the post may be a bit off because I originally made this post about 3 years ago.

There has always been a mountain of discussion around the net about MLM and the pros and cons of this type of business. After being involved in 2 MLM businesses several years apart and having both turn out not to be what I had expected, I wanted to share several thoughts and observations.

I want to start off by saying that I believe you can make some serious money building an MLM business. I was making $4,000 a month for awhile in the last business I was in and was working with people every week that were bringing in checks anywhere from $10k to $100k per month. However, these people are very few and far between. Every MLMer or MLM prospect needs to understand this. The odds are very much against you, but that isn’t what you are led to believe.

Even though you can make serious money from MLM, I would be hard pressed to recommend anyone start an MLM business. Why? Because there is the hype and myth of MLM, and then there is the reality.

As you are being recruited into an MLM business you will be spoon-fed all of the myths of MLM without any of the reality. Some of the myths are, you can earn a residual income, you don’t have to sell, you can market on the internet, you own your own business, you only have to work at this part time, etc.

The reality is:

MLM Is Not Residual
For some of the top dogs this isn’t true, but until you reach a level in the neighborhood of $25k a month or so, residual income isn’t happening. You can have a thriving business as I did and in a matter of a month or two be making absolutely nothing. I wouldn’t call this residual income at all.

I was involved in a large and expensive radio advertising campaign and when everyone in my group decided to get out of it at the same time, my bonus checks went from $2,500 to $1,500 to ZERO in two months. And that’s where it’s been for the last 6 months or so.

Even some of the top leaders in my company that have huge downlines have to continue to work extremely hard to collect all of their bonuses. There were so many outs in our compensation plan you could never take a break and just collect your residual income. Unless you continued working like a maniac, you you weren’t going to get paid. True residual income lets you do the work once and get paid many times over.

You Don’t Really Own Your Own Business
This was the biggest reality check for me. About the time I joined my last MLM business (it was EcoQuest International already! (Oh, I might get in trouble for that.)) I had been studying search engine optimization and other net marketing strategies for a few months and wanted to promote my new business on the internet.

The EcoQuest ethics dept had plenty to say about that. We were not allowed to use the company’s name, product names, trademarks, pictures, my own pics of my purifier, etc., in any kind of marketing whatsoever unless you were pre-approved to do so, which was nearly impossible. I know all of this first hand because I broke nearly all the rules in my attempts to gather leads for retail and recruiting purposes.

So here I was with my “own” business, but I couldn’t market or distribute the products as I wanted using the skills and knowledge I had acquired. I couldn’t do what I would do in nearly any other business. I essentially had a boss telling me how I had to run my business.

I had a business, but I couldn’t tell anyone on the internet what I was doing unless they contacted me first. How was I supposed to do that? This fact alone made me waste an incredible amount of time with people that had no interest at all in EcoQuest or air purification. I’ll go further into the net marketing aspect a little later.

Most People Are Not Qualified For An MLM Career
I’m sure that’s going to shake some people up, but its true. Every MLM you join will want you to recruit your friends and family. Depending who you are and your socioeconomic status this could be very good or a disaster. It’s a disaster for most people and is probably the biggest reason people quit their mlm business
Here’s a big reality check, if you started your own corporation manufacturing widgets, how many of your friends and family would you ask to join you? Probably next to none because they aren’t qualified for the widget industry, so why would you ask these same friends and family to join you in a sales and recruiting career?

I just finished reading an incredible book about marketing called, Your Marketing Sucks by Mark Stevens and he says that the one of the reasons corporations do so badly at marketing is because they either hire salespeople who can’t sell, or they force people who are not salespeople, to become salespeople.

As an example, some companies force a few of their engineers to meet with customers and try to sell their products. Companies think that because engineers develop the products, they can tell their clients all about the cool things they do. Corporations have forgotten one thing in this scenario, 99% of engineers don’t have social skills, that’s why they got into engineering, so they could hide in the dark dungeons of a test lab and create cool stuff like cruise missles, NOT SELL!

The same goes for your MLM business. MLM is recruiting and selling, period. So, why would you want to recruit someone that claims they have a dream but are afraid to sell. And why would you recruit someone who can’t use the telephone properly?

Occasionally, on a very rare basis, all of the hype training and motivational sales meetings will work on someone and this will tend to perpetuate more meetings and training because it worked for one rare individual, and then the cycle repeats itself.

There are only a very, very few people who do really well at MLM. You will go through thousands of people to find maybe just one person who is well suited for MLM. Many times MLM business turn into counseling businesses because of all the people issues you have to deal with. I don’t have time for that! I expect people to do what they say they’re going to do because I’m a businessperson, not a counselor!

For Some Reason MLM Attracts Lazy People
I made the mistake of personally sponsoring 120 people, and 110 of them were just plain lazy! It could be that there has been so much hype in MLM that people have just been brainwashed into believing that they are going to get something for nothing. Most of those 110 people thought they would get rich from just joining and getting a $35 dealer kit.

I have had people leave messages on my toll free lead capture #’s exclaiming how they were so excited about starting a business they couldn’t stand it, They were motivated, committed, and ready to go. Even though my 3-minute business message explained the opportunity in detail, after 5 minutes of talking with them they would say, “You mean I have to sell something?”

MLM Is Hype
Most of what you hear about MLM is pure hype. In my first MLM venture I was told I could work 2 to 5 hours a week and make $5,000 per month. This was nearly a mantra in Amway and although I was warned that EcoQuest would be hard work, when I was making $4k a month I was devoting nearly my whole life to it.

The top dog in EcoQuest makes about $110,000/month but he IS EcoQuest. He does 200 meetings a year and travels the entire country and several foreign countries. He’s putting in a bit more that 5 hours a week. Every waking moment of his life is dedicated to EcoQuest.

The biggest part of the hype is that you can become wealthy from MLM. You can earn good money but only 1 in 1,000,000 people who actually join an MLM will even approach wealth status. MJ (michaeljohn) has talked a lot about this, look up some of his posts, you need to start an MLM business, not join an MLM business to become wealthy.

Some of the top, top people in MLM don’t even stay with a company that long and many top dogs are no longer involved in MLM at all. They either train other MLMers or they start a lead generation company.
Why do you suppose that is?

Most Lead Capture Pages and Lead Generation Companies Suck!
I know you’ve all seen them, I know you get them in your email every day, and I know you are sick of them. They are those single web pages that give you 3 paragraphs of hype about owning your own business and no information on what type of business you will be starting.

I wasted my time with thousands, yes thousands of people I never should have talked to. I want to give a prospect as much information as I can up front and every reason NOT to join my MLM. The last thing I want is for people to get excited about an opportunity they know nothing about and then have their hopes (and mine) dashed when they figure out they are going to have to work at selling air purifiers and recruiting.
Once I started putting up lead capture pages with more info on them I started getting fewer leads and talking to less people, but my results were the same.

You’ll normally get the same bad results with lead generation companies. Most lead generation on the internet is a scam. Most people are tricked into giving their personal information in the attempt to win a free DVD player or iPod. They then get tons of spam and become a lead for 20 hungry MLMers. They don’t care about your business, they just want their free iPod.

Most MLM Companies Are Net Marketing Neanderthals, My Company Was
I told you I’d get back to this.

If an MLM company doesn’t understand the reality of internet marketing today, they will be dead in 5 years. Everyone in business today knows, or better know, the power of the internet, fortunes are made everyday on the net in every kind of business imaginable. What will the internet look like in 5 years? What will sales be like in 5 years?

More people are shopping on the net everyday, yet for some unknown reason some MLM companies, especially the one I was in, doesn’t see or refuses to see the potential of internet marketing. In EcoQuest’s efforts to keep a level playing field for all of its distributors (so they say) it has forgotten one thing, thousands of people are looking for air purification products and some are specifically looking for EcoQuest products everyday and can’t find them OR they find a competitor and THEY get the sale.

Many people have heard of EcoQuest or the Living Air line of air purification systems and look for them via the internet. For some people, their only tool for finding EcoQuest products will be the net. They won’t get information from any other source.

It is very possible that EcoQuest, or any other MLM company that has this attitude about the net, will eventually begin to fizzle out because their competitors will take advantage of the fact they don’t know how to market on the web.

A little side note about your replicated MLM web site that you pay anywhere from $10 to $50 a month for. In net marketing terms, they are a joke. Search engines consider most MLM web sites as spam because they are replicated 1,000’s of times.

The proper net marketing thing for anyone in an air purification mlm business to do would be to create a site with no less than 150 pages that covers every aspect of indoor air purification, from, pet problems, to mold, to chemical outgassing from construction materials, etc., etc.

That’s what any business should do on the net today, especially an MLM business! (there’s a clue there people) If you have a business, again, any business and you aren’t doing this you are missing a huge opportunity.

Until your MLM company lets you do something like this with your product line they are net marketing Neanderthals!

Many of the big time people in MLM probably built their businesses with recruiting methods that no longer work (dragging people to meetings), yet they are still teaching those methods because they are no longer building their business, they are maintaining them. Their businesses have reached such critical mass that they can tell their troops just about anything and their businesses will still grow.

That’s the problem with many MLM’s and the net. The MLM old timers, with old time methods, run the recruiting and marketing efforts and don’t realize the full potential of the net.

All businesses, especially MLM businesses, must evolve as the internet evolves.

In Conclusion
Yes you can make serious money in MLM, and you have a one in one million opportunity to get wealthy. We’re talking about gangster money wealthy here folks. Very, very few people will ever get to a level of $250,000 to $300,000 or more in MLM.

I’ve heard about some people in my business making $25k per month. Then I found out they were spending $15k per month in advertising. Let’s talk about profit. The next time an MLMer shows you their bonus check, ask how much of that is profit.

The more I look at affiliate marketing however, I can see how it really is a better alternative than MLM. I know of several people making much more than $300,000 per year in affiliate marketing. Does anyone really know what to do to get that kind of income in MLM? Can you formulate a specific plan to make that kind of income?

Affiliate marketing is entirely different. You can build a $300,000 income with expenses of only about $1500 per year.

I think I’ll stick with affiliate marketing.

Alan L

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