Need motivation? Love what you do, and do what you love. For affiliate marketers, it begins with niche selection. When you’re passionate about your niche, you soon realise that affiliate marketing is the best way to earn money online.
In my beginners’ guide, Making Money Online – Affiliate Marketing for Beginners, I offer the following advice: “Before you create your blog or website you must decide on a market niche – your unique area of expertise. Your niche should be something that you are passionate about or something that you understand very well. Ideally, it will be both.”
I’ve now come to the conclusion that it must be both. For, if you are passionate about something, you will come to know it well. But, knowing something well does not mean that it will remain your passion. Perhaps, it was never a passion, merely your meal ticket.
When you’re feeling flat or tired but you’ve tasked yourself to complete a blog post, you need to find the correct sort of energy in order to write well, and a key motivational factor that will invoke that sort of energy is passion.
I recommend that among the ideas you’ve brainstormed, you save your favourite for a time when you are really feeling challenged. Commit to writing one fine introductory paragraph, and there’s every chance that in a couple of hours you’ll still be writing.
Passion is Power
Recently, almost simultaneously, I gained two new insights into niche selection. The first was when I came across an outstanding motivational philosophy that was embraced by the late Steve Jobs:
“Your work is going to fill a large part of your life, and the only way to be truly satisfied is to do what you believe is great work.”
“The only way to do great work is to love what you do.”
“You’ve got to find what you love, and that is as true for your work as it is for your lovers.”
“The ones that were successful loved what they did so they could persevere when it got really tough. The ones who didn’t love it quit – because they were sane!”
“You’ve got to love it. You’ve got to have passion.”
Jobs went on the explain that he never gave much thought to the money, and this remained true until the end. He felt certain that he and Steve Wozniak would have still been at it – working away in the Jobs family garage – long after the others abandoned their dreams, believing them to be futile.
That gave me pause. I was working in a niche that was really starting to irritate me. My niche selection criteria were based on my familiarity with the subject and the prevalence of low completion, long tail keywords I’d uncovered. Clearly, I’d been writing for the wrong reasons.
In his post, the website publisher explains that his site was consistently producing an income of $500 per month and that it was only ever intended to be a temporary niche, while he reflected on what was to become his ideal niche. The website was still relatively new. It had never earned as much as its sale price during its entire existence.
The publisher’s frustration is evident in the fact that he only published fifty posts – even though each post provided him with an average return of $445. That’s not too shabby when you consider that it was a new website and that some posts were only 500 words long.
I believe the selling price of $12,500 was a bargain for the buyer who could easily recoup the investment within 25 months or fewer by doing little more than tweaking and adding to the existing posts now and then.
I like to think the buyer was a professional affiliate marketer who can delegate work to ensure that quality content will continue to be published – the best of them think that way. On that basis, the right buyer could double or triple existing revenues within a few months, and after that, the sky’s the limit. This website may prove to be an outstanding buy. After all, Mr Google already seems to like the site and has granted it some authority.
So Why Sell?
The publisher sold his website because he was fed up with his niche. He was writing about what he did for a living, about a career he no longer enjoyed. He wanted to travel and he wanted to blog about that, and $12,500 was all he needed to get started.
I fell into the same trap myself. I believed that writing about something I understood well would be easy, but it soon became very frustrating. Even though I was producing content that required little or no research, my first niche became a burden. I had been reaching for low hanging fruit and got what I deserved.
A stimulating (if challenging) niche – one I could enjoy researching and writing about – was what I required. I needed a niche that I could love even when it presented additional demands.