Choosing the Right Niche for You
Alright, the first thing you need to do is choose a niche to focus on. This method is so much easier than the micro niche method, because it doesn’t involve hours upon hours of researching products, affiliate networks, and keyword tools. You just pick a niche and go.
Okay, so it does involve SOME research, but the research is faster and easier using this method and using a few free tools you can complete this in an hour or less in most cases. The first thing to do is figure out a niche that has voracious buyers but NOT a ton of competition. This is the toughest part, because most markets with voracious buyers are insanely competitive. (Some competition is good, but too much competition makes your job much harder.) I use a program called Jaaxy for this.
Golf, for example, is a popular niche for internet marketers to get into. This is especially true for beginners. Yes, golfers do tend to have excess income to spend. Yes, they do tend to spend a good chunk of that excess income on their hobby. But because pretty much everyone knows this, competition is ridiculous. There are just too many established golf websites for the average marketer to compete.
I use this tool for my keyword research, and I find it second to none. Try THIS.
Is it possible to compete? Absolutely. But unless you are extremely good at marketing and/or have a huge budget for advertising and content creation, you’re not likely to make a whole lot of headway in this niche. It’s just far too over-saturated. A great idea is focusing on a broad interest group rather than a more competitive niche. Look at DIYReady.com (http://www.diyready.com), for example.
They have a niche—DIY—but it’s broad enough that they have a huge number of topics they can focus on within the DIY spectrum, which also gives them a broader range of products they can promote. Because there are so many individual topics under the DIY umbrella, virtually anyone can compete in this niche.
People who enjoy this type of content typically frequent multiple DIY websites, and those users are easy to access because they are prevalent on Pinterest and other social websites. This is the type of niche you should try to locate. You want something broad—but not too broad—with voracious buyers and fans that are easy to locate.
Some examples include:
DIY, crafts, home improvement, gardening, etc.
Prepping, survival, outdoor skills
Model building (cars, ships, airplanes, etc.)
Pets (specific breeds, or types)
The great thing about this method is that if you discover one aspect of a niche isn’t working for you, it’s easy to switch to another one as long as you get a domain that covers the whole, broad niche. For example, if you decided to market to model builders and want to focus on model cars, you might want to register a domain like model builders.com instead of modelcarbuilders.com so you can branch out into planes and ships later. (I’m sure those domains are taken; I’m just using them as a basic example.)
Worst case scenario, if you create a large amount of custom content in a niche and it doesn’t pan out the way you hope, you could sell the website or articles to someone else in the niche to recoup some costs you incurred, and probably make a good profit. Once you’ve chosen a niche and bought a broad domain, it’s time to move on.
An Introduction to Amazon Affiliate
Amazon has been a great income earner for affiliates for many years, but changes to a variety of factors such as SEO and the habits of your typical web surfer have made it a much different environment than it was a few years ago.
It was once possible to create micro niche sites that focused on a very specific niche subject, or even one single product, and make very good money.
Google seemed to love those micro niche sites, and it was very easy to rank them and make a lot of money quickly.
But times change. Google apparently decided they wanted that most micro niche sites were spam, which was mostly true, and decided it wanted to rank sites that had huge amounts of quality content instead.
It destroyed a lot of businesses, and domains began expiring left and right because they lost their rankings and were no longer profitable. With all these changes making old methods difficult, if not nearly impossible, is it still possible to make money as an Amazon affiliate?
The answer is a resounding, “YES!”
The methods may be different, but it certainly is possible to earn very good money as an Amazon affiliate, and you’re going to learn how in this guide.
So let’s begin.
The first thing you need to do is toss out your old notions of micro-niche sites. These sites are a lot harder to make profitable, and it requires a lot more marketing and promotion. It’s simply not feasible. Google doesn’t like tiny websites, because tiny websites are generally nothing but spam.
For this reason, it’s incredibly difficult to rank a “thin” website, meaning the original purpose of micro niche sites (to bring in a large amount of traffic to promote just one or two affiliate products) is pretty much dead unless you’re willing to put in a ton of time and effort into other marketing methods.
Instead, it’s important to focus on wider niches, because if you’re going to put so much effort into promotion, you might as well have a lot more products that you can potentially sell. Another thing that is practically dead is the review site. Review sites just aren’t going to rank in Google, and most people just go to Amazon, Best Buy, Walmart, Target, or some other major retailer to find reviews.
People online are more savvy than ever, and they have learned that the average “review site” is nothing more than a thinly-veiled affiliate site. While review sites can work, it’s just so much harder than it once was. You can no longer easily rank these sites, and they require a lot more promotion, and since people no longer trust them like they once did, they really aren’t as profitable.
Fortunately, there’s a better way.
It does NOT involve:
- Creating “thin” affiliate sites with little to no original content
- Focusing on single products or narrow niches
- Spamming Google and other search engines
- Registering dozens of domains (or more)
- Intense keyword research
- Paid advertising
This method is actually easier and more fun than the old method, and requires less financial investment than the old micro niche method, because you only need one domain, or maybe a handful, instead of dozens, hundreds, or thousands.
You can focus on a broader niche, while still attracting Google traffic and getting traffic from other sources. In fact, this is actually the type of method Google prefers, because you’re creating REAL website with REAL content and REAL benefits to your visitors!
LinkedIn’s Ad Specs & Advertising Guidelines
You launched your first Company Page, and we’re sure that your fingers are itching to start making some cool ads to start promoting your content. That is great news, and we have made room to give something special to you before you start.
In this article, we will teach you how to apply some ideal ad specifications in advertising with LinkedIn, as well as how to follow and comply with the LinkedIn guidelines.
LinkedIn’s Ad Specs
For LinkedIn Advertising Specifications, my advice for you is to go straight to www.linkedin.com/help/lms/topics/8154/8155 and right here you will be able to see all the advertising specifications for each one of the Ad Types LinkedIn is actually offering you.
First, take a look at the Sponsored Content and the Text Ads Ones.
Sponsored Content Ads are updates that promote your content to an audience beyond people that are following your profile or your company. You can use them to target a specific audience, and help you reach LinkedIn members wherever and whenever they are engaging on the LinkedIn platform across desktop, mobile, and tablet.
For Sponsored Company Content and Direct Sponsored Content Specifications, we find: Link sharing, Embedded Rich Media, Ad policy notes, tracking capabilities, and Click flow. Text Ads are a tailor made for reaching any type of potential audience on desktop devices on any type of budget.
For Advertising Specifications for Text Ads, we find: Links, Text, Image and Placement.
You can also take a look at the other Ad Specs, depending on your plans for advertising with LinkedIn.
LinkedIn Advertising Guidelines
The following advertising guidelines have been created by LinkedIn to protect their users and the integrity of its platform. Failure to comply with these guidelines will get your ads removed from the platform.
LinkedIn can also restrict you from further advertising on it, so take note:
- Your in-ad content must be accurate and true to the actual content being promoted. Do not ever deceive or lie to LinkedIn members through advertising.
- Keep your in-ad text concise and well formatted. Do not use non-standard grammar, spelling or capitalization.
- In-ad contact information must be kept to a minimum. Add only one link, one email address or one phone number per ad.
- Do not ever use inappropriate, suggestive or outright offensive language in your ads.
- In-ad links must lead to clean and non-deceiving sites.
- Do not use trademarked material that you are not legally allowed to promote.
- Do not promote sensitive content such as adult and dating websites, gambling related material or websites, hate related or violent content or religiously inflammatory content.
- Do not promote prohibited products and services such as multi-level marketing schemes, affiliate advertising, alcoholic products, animal products, counterfeit goods, copyrighted content, private data, drug related content and paraphernalia, fake documentation, cracked or pirated software, tobacco related content or products and weapons or firearms.
IM Business Models:Blogging
Of course the first thing that comes to mind for many people when discussing ways to make money online is blogging. A successful blog is an incredibly valuable tool because it essentially provides you with a platform through which you can promote any other type of business model. For instance, if you chose to become an affiliate marketer, then building up a popular blog with a large, regular readership is one of the very best ways to sell those products.
Likewise, if you want to be a drop seller, then you can really benefit from a blog by simply creating an e commerce store and using the blog to promote that. We’ve already seen that you actually need to have a good website or blog in place if you plan on CPA marketing. The same goes double for subscription sites. There are more options with blogging too. One is to use PPC advertising such as AdSense. AdSense are ads from Google that pay out each time someone clicks on them.
You simply add some ‘ad script’ to your website and then it will show different adverts at different times. Or perhaps you just want to use display ads? Get big enough and many brands will pay you monthly to feature their adverts on your site. Likewise, you can use a blog to launch all kinds of other business ventures or you can get paid by sponsors to recommend products.
A website can even be used to sell a service – if you provide web design or writing services then your website can be a great place to demonstrate your talent and your knowledge. There are countless examples of people who have become very wealthy through running a blog. Pat Flynn who owns (www.smartpassiveincome.com) is one such example. Pat is a guy who talks about making money online and who actually owns several blogs and websites including one aimed at food trucks which he publishes his earnings from.
Pat’s blog is very easy to read and provides a ton of great information and as a result, he has achieved almost superstar status and is invited to big events. This is just an ordinary family guy! Pat makes his money mainly through adverts on the sites and via sales of information products. Another great example is The Art of Manliness (www.artofmanliness.com). This blog was founded by Brett McKay in 2008 and focuses on a range of topics relating to what it means to be a man in the 21st century.
It’s a unique niche that allows him to cover diverse topics ranging from beard trimming, to weightlifting, to how to smoke a cigar and drink whiskey. The site is now highly successful and provides far more than a full time income to Brett and his family. He makes his income through various types of advertising, possibly commission on physical products and through sales of his own products through an e commerce store.
How to Get Started, And Succeed!
The problem with running a blog is that it’s not easy. In order for a blog to become profitable, it’s often necessary for you to be getting hundreds of thousands of views a day and to have a smart form of monetization in place.
The question is, how do you get to this point?
Setting Up a Blog
Thankfully, actually setting up a blog is a relatively easy process. To do this, you’ll need to find a hosting account and a domain name and you’ll probably want to use a CMS such as WordPress. A hosting account is basically what gives you the ‘space’ to store your files on the web. You’ll be paying a monthly or yearly fee in order to rent space on a ‘server’ which is a giant computer that remains constantly connected to the web at all times.
You place your website files on that and it ensures they’re able to be served up when someone wants to find them. In order to find those files though, your visitors will need to use your domain name or URL. This is the address that people will type in order to find your website and this address is going to point at the specific directory within the
server so that people are shown your website when they navigate there.
Fortunately, finding hosting and a domain name are both relatively easy tasks and shouldn’t set you back too much more than $200 a year to begin with (tops). This is where creating a SaaS business would be much more complicated as you’d need a lot more space and speed from the server in order to let thousands of users upload and edit files as they needed to. A great example of a hosting site that also offers domain name registration and web hosting is Blue Host (www.bluehost.com).
A quick search on Google though will yield many, many more. Next comes the CMS. CMS stands for ‘Content Management System’ and essentially what this is, is a tool that will allow you to easily change the look of your website and to add and delete pages of content. The best known CMS is WordPress and it’s highly recommended that you go this route. WordPress will allow you to create a website in minutes rather than months, it will manage your files and it will look highly professional.
WordPress is not a ‘beginners’ tool by any means but rather is a professional piece of CMS software that is actually used by many of the biggest brands on the planet. Huge websites like Forbes, the BBC and Mashable use WordPress, as do the aforementioned successful blogs we mentioned. Using WordPress also ensures your site will be compatible with a ton of useful tools and features including the aforementioned WooCommerce and Amember.
It also means you’ll have a community of people out there who can help with any technical troubles you may be having and that your site will be easy for most web developers to understand and edit. In short, WordPress makes
life much easier for you and also makes your site far more professional. It is tried and tested and known to succeed… so why go with anything else?
If you choose a prominent hosting service like BlueHost, then the option to install WordPress will even be right there in the control panel meaning it takes literally just one click. All that said, there are other CMS options if you would prefer. One is Joomla! (www.joomla.org) which is similar to WordPress and offers a lot of flexibility. It’s a lot more fiddly though and there’s less support available mostly it is used in house for companies creating backend software.
Another popular choice is Drupal, which is again much more complicated.
Of course, you could always create your own CMS or forego having one at all, but either of these choices will drastically increase your workload while actually putting your business at more risk. Be very limited in terms of space, bandwidth and the other elements of your website. Blogger is also highly limited in terms of the features it offers for building your own web design.
In other words, if you want to create a proper website with the potential to grow and scale into something that will
earn a lot of money, you can’t use something like Blogger.
CPA marketing stands for ‘Cost Per Action’. This is an interesting alternative to affiliate marketing that is similar in many ways. Basically, what ‘cost per action’ means is that you get paid every time someone carries out a certain action. Now, in many cases this might mean that you get paid when someone buys something – in which case it is
working similarly to affiliate marketing (except that you’re getting paid a flat rate most likely). In other cases though, the ‘action’ might mean subscribing to a mailing list or joining a membership site.
Another difference is that CPA is often managed more similarly to PPC or display advertising. In other words, rather than promoting a product you might simply place adverts on your website. Instead of being paid for every click though, you get paid when someone clicks on the advert and then takes the required action.
Similar again to affiliate marketing, the first thing you need to do to get started with CPA marketing is to find yourself a platform where you’ll be able to track down the different offers and start promoting the adverts/links.
Currently, CPA marketing isn’t quite as big as affiliate marketing which is both a good thing and a bad thing. It’s a good thing because it means less competition for you but it’s a bad thing because it’s a little harder to find good options.
Likewise, there aren’t as many networks that have quite risen to the top of the heap like JVZoo or Clickbank. Some CPA networks are actually a bit poorly made and in some cases even disreputable. Make sure you do your research then before choosing one to go with! That said, some good CPA networks to choose from include Max Bounty (www.maxbounty.com), PeerFly (www.peerfly.com) or Clickbooth (www.clickbooth.com).
Make sure to read the reviews and browse through what’s available in order to find the right products and deals that you want to promote. What you’ll find when looking at these is that the whole process is a little simpler and more automated versus affiliate marketing. You simply sign up as a publisher and then post the ads/promotions on your site without having to deal directly with the brand that is offering the CPA promotion.
In other words, this system is a lot closer to using AdSense or other ‘Pay Per Click’ adverts.
How to Get Accepted Into a CPA Network
One of the tougher parts of CPA marketing is that you need to be ‘accepted’ into the network and into the specific deal. In order to make sure that they are offering their clients the very best service, CPA networks make sure to vet the publishers they work with closely. They want to make sure that you are representing the offers you’re
promoting well and that the brands they work with will be proud to be associated with your business.
All this means that if you have a website that looks like it was made by a 13-year old, you’re going to struggle. Likewise, if you have no prior experience or examples of your work then you may also struggle. So the solution is to make sure that you have a good website that you can demonstrate to those networks that you’re delivering good value and you’re reaching a larger audience.
This does mean that CPA might not be the best choice for those who are starting out with their first online business model – as they’ll need to build up some traction first. Another tip for getting accepted into CPA networks is to pick up the phone and give them a call. Ask to speak with an affiliate manager and this way you can put forward your strong case for why you think you should be accepted. This essentially fast tracks you and it’s certainly much quicker
and easier than waiting for lots of emails to come through.