Monthly Archives: December 2013

Starting a Legitimate Internet Business – Affiliate Programs

If you were to list all of the necessary elements to begin
building a legitimate Internet business from scratch, few
people would have the skills, experience or in lieu of
those, money to even get to square one. When it is all said
and done and you are ready to start advertising your
business, you may find you don’t even like marketing, or
worse – there is no market for your product or service. Then
what?

All of that is precisely why affiliate programs are the
perfect way for you to see if you even like Internet
marketing before you try to build a business online from
scratch. If you start out on your own, you will need to know
programming, web design, and connectivity, just to display a
website on the Internet. To take this way out, you would
need to create your own product or service that you could
sell to create income. Then of course no business can
happen unless you advertise and market it, and this requires
knowing effective strategies.

All told you could spend years getting it all together and
then more time to promote your business before you would
ever see a profit, particularly if you had to pay for all of
the above. The statistic bandied about for many years for an
offline business, is 5-years to make a profit, during which
time your expenses continue – for example with a store or
office outside the home, there is insurance, taxes, rent,
inventory, staff, equipment and supplies. They need to be
paid whether or not you sell one thing during that time and
this is one reason why it may take so long to realize a
return on your investment.

While having an Internet home business of course you
wouldn’t have all those ongoing, mounting expenses, however
in reality it still does take time and lots of effort – More
than likely nowhere near 5-years, but of course that is
depending on what sort of a system/product you are
creating.

When you become a member of an affiliate program, you are,
with your membership dues, buying the right to use and
profit from their intellectual property – everything they
have spent time and money to develop to build their
business; and to use their resources, including that they
handle all your sales transactions and serve your customers,
and you earn commissions when you make a sale. It is a
perfect exchange, where you are promoting their business and
giving them free advertising by your efforts to earn money –
so that is why they allow you to use everything for what
comparatively speaking is a very small amount of money – not
to mention all the time you are saving in development and
experimentation.

Now it is likely you have heard the misinformation about how
affiliate programs are ‘pyramid schemes’ or ‘scams’ or
‘Ponzi schemes’. It is true ‘MLM’ (multi-level
marketing) has gotten a black-eye not only because there are
in fact some unscrupulous businesses (everywhere, in any
industry) but also because people do not understand what it
is they are paying for, and it is true you wonder, why you
are paying for a job?

Let’s compare a closely related industry which is being a
product distributor – for example selling health or beauty
products. People have been doing this for ages, and they
pay for everything – there are likely membership dues,
and/or sometimes you must have inventory, or to buy the
product yourself every month. You pay for the order forms,
catalogues and brochures, and of course marketing and
advertising unless you know how to do it yourself. They may
provide some level of training to help you. You may earn
commissions on anything you sell and if it works, eventually
you will recover your expenses and make a profit.

The question is why are these multi-level marketing
companies not painted with the same ‘scam’ brush as
affiliate programs? Because you can see a tangible product?
Because you are not technically making money from referrals
alone? When you sell someone a product aren’t you referring
them to that company? Or is it more ‘legitimate’ because
you recognize the brand name and there is no mystery about
just what they do or what you get?

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Online Business Start-Up – Say What You Mean and Mean What You Say

It is important in business to build trusting relationships
– with prospects, customers, peers, vendors, etc. It is
important in all relationships to be honest and open.
Whatever you state to be true, make it happen. If anything
unexpected prevents you from meeting your commitment, then
be honest about that. Let people know that you need more
time or whatever it is to resolve the problem BEFORE you are
late.

The point is if you say Tuesday, and you can’t make it,
then Tuesday (or even Monday) let people know that you will
be late. Keep them up-to-date on your progress. Show some
respect. Wednesday, while it seems reasonable, is actually
late if you promised otherwise. It is not just about the
inconvenience this may have caused your partners, but more
about your word and whether you are to be trusted. It is
said that sometimes you can actually deepen people’s belief
in you by the way you handle errors.

They certainly won’t trust you as much as they did if they
wait, expecting you on Tuesday, but not hearing anything
from you. By Wednesday they already know that you didn’t
keep your promise – so now no matter what, you have that
little breach in their trust. You may have rushed yourself
by saying Tuesday as you thought this would please them –
but now it has backfired because you really did need more
time. So why not be honest in front – ‘Tuesday or
Wednesday’ is your estimated time of arrival; And note the
word ‘estimate’ – that leaves you some wiggle room because
you are not saying you absolutely commit to Tuesday.

Beyond personal business relationships there is the matter
of publishing statements as to promises of income, time,
support, etc. Again – don’t say it unless you mean it.
For example if you are using the strategy where some
super-duper opportunity is only valid for 48 hours, and you
decide to extend the offer, then state that. ‘We know we
told you 48 hours, but due to the overwhelming response, we
have decided to extend this offer for another 48 hours’.

The point is don’t leave your timer displaying ‘5 more
minutes left’ for the next 3 months. People won’t trust
you if you don’t keep your word – sure they will appreciate
in this case having extra time – but there are people who do
notice what are less than ingenuous statements. If you are
caught in this act too many times’ you will end up being
‘the boy who cried wolf’ that nobody believed anymore. An
online business is still a business. It may feel more
relaxed and it certainly is in many respects – however there
are certain things like your word that you need to
diligently uphold.

In the extreme this can actually become a legal issue for a
business. For example with ‘bait and switch’ – where the
promise is that something costs a certain amount and that
qualifies you to have specific abilities. However, after
the sale it is revealed that the level at which you paid
does not include critical elements and that you will need to
pay more in order to proceed. So it baited them with the
deal and then they switched the deal after the fact. This
same dynamic in reverse however would work well – if you
over-deliver – the deal is 10 for $10 but what they get is
15 for $10 to their delight! Keep it real!

Online Business Opportunities – Reviewing “Scam Buster” Websites

The short answer is it is all subjective like anything else
– There are degrees of ‘EZ’ or ‘Fast’, which would be
interpreted differently by many people in many individual
ways – from wherever they sit. So we have to keep that in
mind before we judge. What do they mean by ‘EZ’
(‘autopilot’, ‘automated’, ‘push-button’)? … and
what exactly does that mean to us if we are looking for a
legitimate home business opportunity? What will we have to
do to bring our skill and/or experience level up to par in
order to be able to do that program or business?

Likely we will want to do it quickly and easily – and those
who have previous experience with using a PC, using the
Internet, and even marketing and sales have ‘a leg up’ in
that they will be able to pick it right up when they see
instructions for navigating various websites and services.
All have the advantage in learning how to function using
Internet marketing tools and resources if they are doing
simple things like connecting to the Internet, sending and
receiving emails, shopping, banking, and doing research in
the search engines for any reason. It all counts as
experience.

How fast is ‘Fast’? Days? Weeks? Months? The short answer
there is nobody knows the future and being that there are
many variables, there isn’t even an ‘average’ time. It is
humorous that typical Internet marketing hype says wealth
can be ‘instant’ in the opening remarks — yet then if it
is a legitimate program, they will usually have a story
about struggling for years to get somewhere. They are
completely candid about it not being a cake-walk; and many
may honestly say exactly how they were able to achieve what
they have done. It was tough but it was well worth it.
Taking the actions they did worked eventually and they saw
real tangible results and they took it to the bank.

The reality of the struggle to start a business often falls
on deaf ears when people do not want to hear this, because
they want to think they can have wealth without work – They
want to know the secret sauce! The mystery catalyst that
they can get too! All very dramatic! They can even imagine
that the ‘guru’ will do everything for them.

Suddenly knowing his secrets will not suffice! Accepting
free trials and free offers is an entitlement to expect
magic next! This could be that the ‘guru’ is expected to
work for nothing now since they already made their money and
do everything for the new member. The training is available
if that is included, but they would rather have mentoring
for free 24/7 and may not even attempt to follow directions.
True it would be ideal, but how could anybody make a living
if they were spending every hour mentoring for free? Who
would pay their bills?

It is good if we actually do our due diligence and not just
‘fly by night’: Find out what will be required before we
make a commitment or during the trial period. We shouldn’t
look at the trial period as merely a good thing because it
is free. It really is our opportunity to ‘kick the tires’
and see exactly what is involved and to determine whether we
are willing to ‘stay the course’. Otherwise we will waste
time and money and not achieve our goals in the long-run.