Affiliate Marketing or Your Own Products?

27 replies
What is your main source of income?

Affiliate products or your own products?
#affiliate #marketing #products
  • Profile picture of the author jbsmith
    Our own. We started with affiliate products - but within 6 mo's moved into our own products across 4 different niche markets. Once you know/understand the desire and motivation within a marketplace - putting your own products together is both a snap and gives you all kinds of additional options around branding, publicity, as well as increased profit potential.
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    • Profile picture of the author Steve B
      My guess is . . . most people will say affiliate marketing.

      But here's a secret: most of the "truthful" Warriors with profitable businesses will say they have their own products.

      Steve
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  • Profile picture of the author Randall Magwood
    My own products... plus consulting. This is where all the money is. Well that, and seminars and continuity programs.
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  • Profile picture of the author James McAllister
    Started out solely promoting other people's products. Now I have many of my own which make up the bulk of my income.

    That's not to say I'd ever stop affiliate marketing - there are plenty of fantastic products I'd never have the resources to recreate myself. But I agree with with others - generally much more profitable to sell your own products, with your own affiliates marketing it for you.
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  • Profile picture of the author Marc Rodill
    Started out with affiliate marketing like most of us do. The threshold to enter that game is so low. You don't have to go through the process of putting up a website, so that's nice. But you lose a lot of perks, like getting paid right away, being able to recruit your own affiliates to help drive traffic, charging what you want, etc. The "mechanics" of creating a product are a real headache when you're new (isn't everything) but they can be made to go away.

    For example, no one is going to drive traffic to your stuff so you can sell an affiliate product. They'd just go get their own affiliate id. You know? But if you own the product, you're the only source. So I transitioned. It's good for traffic. Leverage. And platforms like JVZoo will host a website for you for free until you can hire someone, do it yourself, etc. The good news, when you own your own product, you can still sell affiliate products on the back end.

    Marc

    PS. Years ago my very first decent online source of income was nothing more than traffic to squeeze page to free report that promoted an affiliate product. Emails. The only thing that changed is, now, it's not an affiliate product.

    Go figure.
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  • Profile picture of the author Stefan Vee
    If your product depends on affiliates, then don't burn your own product because you don't understand how to be a successful affiliate yourself.
    Without a doubt, being an affiliate for other products is the best marketing school there is if you ever want to launch your own product.
    If that's what you did, then your own product launch will eventually become your best source of income.
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  • Profile picture of the author Marc Rodill
    Stefan Vee makes a good point. One of the best tips in this racket is to go out and promote affiliate products in a market that interests you. Then, when you find success, to leverage those channels that you already know are working, and replace the affiliate product you are promoting with your own.

    You can do this under a pen name if you want to. But you instantly give yourself a pay raise.

    For example, if you're making 75% commission on a $47 product, and you put out your own $47 product, assuming the conversions are about the same, you've given yourself a raise.

    Of course, unless the affiliate product your promoting pays you on the back end. In which case, you can always sell your product first, and funnel them into the affiliate product.

    That way at least you have a solid customer list. People who've spent money with you, whereas usually when you promote affiliate products you just have one big list, and because you can't track the sale, you don't know who bought and who didn't, and you can't treat customers any better.

    Which we all should. They're worth more. They're demonstrated they spend money.

    Marc
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  • Profile picture of the author Alex The Lion
    I think most people start with affiliate products and then move onto their own products once they get the hang of it
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  • Profile picture of the author ddev
    My own. When you're affiliate, you're alone.

    When you sell your own products, you can sum the efforts of 10's / 100's of affiliates who can give you lots of new leads & sales.

    And of course, you can also add affiliate offers to your funnels for even more money.
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  • Profile picture of the author Brent Stangel
    I think you will find that most people do both.

    I can't think of a single MMO marketer who's products I've purchased who didn't promote affiliate products in their follow-up.
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    • Profile picture of the author discrat
      Originally Posted by Brent Stangel View Post

      I think you will find that most people do both.

      I can't think of a single MMO marketer who's products I've purchased who didn't promote affiliate products in their follow-up.
      I have to say it would almost be foolhardy not to, really !!
      If you have an fellow Marketer who has worked hard for many years to produce an excellent product and it meets the demands of your Audience why wouldn't you ??

      Silly pride would be the only reason !



      - Robert Andrew
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    • Profile picture of the author JohnMcCabe
      Originally Posted by Brent Stangel View Post

      I think you will find that most people do both.

      I can't think of a single MMO marketer who's products I've purchased who didn't promote affiliate products in their follow-up.
      Not just MMO.

      One of my engineering profs had a saying. "Ain't none of us as smart as all of us."

      I believe I do my fans and customers a better service spotlighting a superior product by someone else than by creating a lesser product of my own just so it's my own product.

      And, if you've chosen a good hole in the market, it makes cross-promotions and other cooperative ventures much easier.
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  • Profile picture of the author Adam Yunker
    Hey there,

    Mine personally is affiliate marketing. I'm not to crazy about making my own products because I don't want to deal with returns and customer support so for me affiliate marketing is my go to way for an income online.

    I do shoot for recurring commissions though! If you can build a bunch of people that signup through your link and make recurring commissions off of it, it makes your cash flow so much easier to gauge..

    Just my 2 cents though..

    Hope this was insightful to you

    Adam
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  • Profile picture of the author .X.
    There are some fallacies to address.

    1. Creating your own product is a risk, a lot of work,
    and no guarantee of nothing. Unless you have marketing
    and sales experience, good luck.

    2. Selling an existing, known brand is infinitely easier
    than creating a new brand. Think about it - are you going
    to buy my "Have the Life of Your Dreams!" product or
    Tony Robbins? Tony will win 95 times out of 100.

    3. Affiliates don't just show up, drive traffic and make
    people rich. It's really, really hard to get affiliates on
    board that can help you.

    If you go the route of most and rely on crappy articles,
    blog posts, cheap traffic, etc, with a banner ad or
    bogus review then you're not going to do well as an
    affiliate.

    The big issue few ever address is professionalism -
    sell other people's products as-if they're yours and
    watch what happens.

    In fact I wouldn't follow most systems being touted
    out there and expect ANY success as an affiliate.

    Instead see affiliate marketing as a point of leverage -
    someone else is doing the heavy lifting and they're
    happy to give you half, and there's a nearly endless
    supply of things for you to offer.

    I would never advise anyone starting out - unless
    they already have extensive sales and marketing
    experience - to create their own products. That's not
    an opinion - that's my experience.

    All the best to you -
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  • Profile picture of the author alaakhassa
    When starting = Affiliate marketing.
    When you finally get some cash rolling on + have a responsive list = YOUR OWN PRODUCT.

    Know why?
    - It pays out a lot more.
    - Includes risk, but taking the risk is what makes you an entrepreneur
    - It makes a brand for you.
    - Gets you a bigger responsive list to promote your next products.
    - Gets easier with every time doing it.
    - Pays a lot more (did I just repeat that ?)



    I hope the image is clear for you now.
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  • Profile picture of the author talfighel
    When you are new, you don't want to create your own. You really want to learn how to market other people's products first. Then when you have some experience and know how to succeed, you can then teach others what you have done for a fee.

    Most very successful internet marketers still market other's products because these products pay them BIG commissions.

    If you are going to create your own product, make sure that you also add UPSELLS to your backend.
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  • Profile picture of the author Edwin Torres
    A mix of both. I get passive income from a software I released a couple years ago, but I also have an email list I regularly pitch too. My goal is to pump out some more products and focus on that.
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  • Profile picture of the author DIABL0
    I have been promoting CPA / Affiliate offers for 15 years.

    I assume you are probably asking about IM/MMO products, but thought I would toss my 2 cents in anyway, as it's still affiliate marketing.

    I mainly promote PPL (pay per lead) offers because there's no credit card required. So conversion rates are typically much higher than an offer that requires a sale. All a user has to do is fill out a form for me to make money.

    I favor offers that have some financial positioning...have a make, get or save money angle to them. These have overall worked best for me and they tend to have a greater mass appeal, so the potential to generate high volume exists.

    The bulk of the offers I promote on a front-end campaign pays $20-$60 each and some higher depending on the vertical. I will also promote lower paying and even some offers that require a sale if they are more or less evergreen on the back-end.

    The world outside of IM / MMO is huge and something to consider. Promoting PPL offers with the right strategies can truly produce 6-7 figures, year after year. While most people struggle to earn an income with IM / MMO, it amazes me that more don't try it.
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  • Profile picture of the author brettb
    I have a membership site but its monetized by promoting other peoples' services.

    I had a software business before, that was pretty lucrative.

    But as the previous poster says, look outside the usual niches like MMO or dog training. I'm rebuilding one of my employer's websites and it takes around $25,000 a day. You don't make that from MMO, even if you're a #1 guru.
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  • Profile picture of the author megamind22
    Well if you are just starting out I will say affiliate marketing through list building which will be your main access. But if you are experience marketer then I would say your own product cause you will make more money and wont have to struggle to get traffic to it if you have affiliates promoting it for you.
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    • Profile picture of the author Karlb
      Like others have mentioned, start out affiliate marketing. I did and I learned A LOT.

      I am working on my own informational product. I feel like having a quality, informative product to offer on Click Bank will help me grow a lot because I will be promoted by others.

      When affiliate marketing it's tough to get notoriety. I have viewers and followers who have found me due to my content articles and videos but having other affiliate marketers promote me and my product will be invaluable.
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  • Profile picture of the author PartnerwithJoe
    My situation is slightly different!

    Most of my income comes from affiliate marketing, however during my affiliate marketing journey I created my own products. The truth is it's not an easy task.
    1. You need to create a quality product that actually converts;
    2. You need a solid customer support system, otherwise your product will crash (this is either time consuming or costly if you decide to out source.)
    3. You need to recruit affiliates (easy task)
    4. Refunds+complaints (what a headache)

    I'm not down playing product creation but it's possible to make life changing income from just affiliate marketing.

    Now with explosion of cutting edge technology, there are some softwares out there which you can purchase others are free, these softwares allow you to have an army of affiliates promoting your affiliate links (PM me if you need proof).

    so it's possible and realistic to make a huge Income without ever creating your own product.

    Good luck with your adventure! !
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  • Profile picture of the author peterbeckenham
    Both. I am no guru or super affiliate but have had success.

    Affiliate marketing got me started and continues to provide a regular cash flow including residual commissions. I liked the idea of someone doing all the product creation work and I just focussed on selling the products if they were appropriate to my list.

    I made a huge mistake initially however, by simply sending traffic direct to the product vendor's sales page. Doing this meant I relied solely on the sales page to do all the converting for me plus I was not building a list of my own.

    With a new focus on list building and building relationships with my list I soon realized by consistently adding "entertaining value" to my subscribers that I should just select those products THE most appropriate to my list (and ones I had personally used as well). I sent multiple emails over a week re a specific affiliate product and often showed in a video how I used the product myself. So by the time they clicked the affiliate link they were already enthusiastic about their potential purchase.

    In addition, I also discovered an affiliate offer that not only had a great converting sales funnel for both front-end and back-end products but they also offered at an additional cost, a "done-for-you" system where they did all the follow up and selling.

    Then one day I asked my list via a video what else they would like from me and was surprised that the answers included could you create some video training on various things. This led me just recently to become a product creator - only brand new at this by the way and so far have had only 27 sales.

    But the interesting thing is that new subscribers opting in on my sales page for my product plus my other list members now view me as some sort of "expert or authority" (their words!) and whether this is justified or not, the result for me has been a significant improvement in my main business focus of email marketing - open and click through rates have increased.

    Any connection? Who knows but I am enjoying having an even more responsive list.
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  • Profile picture of the author maxsi
    Our business group has many experts that manage different sections:
    - 1 for affiliate products => sell them
    - 1 for our core products/services
    - 1 for Italian market (our core products/services)
    - 1 for traffic campaigns

    In my opinion you can sell aff. products or your main products/services, by the way the problem is the "TIME" you invest to control your business. Financial indipendence is the final goal you need to point to....
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  • Profile picture of the author tyronne78
    I would start with affiliate marketing. You don't have to spend time,energy and money creating digital products to promote,all that's done for you. With affiliate marketing you can promote offers that are proven to sell,you don't know if you have a proven offer if you create your digital product from scratch.
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  • Profile picture of the author Joe Benjamin
    ...I love creating...building an empire...not
    someone else's.

    I've done affiliate marketing long enough
    to know...that it's FAR more difficult than
    marketing and selling your own products.

    They say, "creating your own product is
    hard!"

    Non-sense.

    Marketing, promoting and selling some
    one elses creation while you get a portion
    of a sale...sending YOUR traffic to them
    to view THEM as the authority and voice
    on the subject YOUR promoting...

    ...no longer makes sense to me.

    It's like someone who's GREAT at singing
    cover songs...

    ...but can't create their OWN music just
    as quickly or confidently.

    There's a HUGE difference between singing
    and having a "Voice".

    If you sing well...no one's listening...but
    if you have a VOICE, everyone hears.

    That's the difference between an affiliate
    marketer and product creator.

    It is so much more fun and profitable to
    build a business around something you
    are good at or currently doing selling
    YOUR products and services.

    People can only truly see you as the
    expert in that field if YOU are taking
    the step forward and creating products
    around what they are looking to you to
    know about.

    As a trader, I can promote other peoples
    courses. And I would make a few sales.
    But I would never truly get the respect
    I would from sending them to someone
    who has something to offer I do not.

    Solution?

    Create my own offer.

    But not just ANY offer.

    I make it so I only work with people
    who are SERIOUS about making money
    online very quickly...are trainable, and
    have funds to be taught how to do what
    I do so well.

    High-ticket is the way to go.

    I learned, it takes the same work to get
    3 $300 sales as it does 3 $20 sales.

    Also, those who do purchase are very,
    VERY low-maintenance.

    You don't get harassed like I see a lot
    of WSO sellers here get over a $10
    pdf report not 'living up to their expectations'.

    Selling your own HIGH-TICKET products
    makes doing business so much fun and
    enjoyable.

    But when you're selling other peoples
    creations...

    ...and the low-end products at that...

    ...that's where you work your butt off.
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  • Profile picture of the author writeaway
    Learn the ropes with affiliate marketing first...

    THEN do your own products.

    Your own products = greater profits.

    Why?

    You call the shots re quality

    You call the shots re landing page

    You call the shots re user experience

    With most affiliate products? Not so much...
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