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Why So Many People Fail at Affiliate Marketing - Passive Income Automation

Why So Many People Fail at Affiliate Marketing

When you hear the term affiliate marketing, some people think it’s a scam or a get rich quick opportunity. To be honest, if these people give affiliate marketing a try, they are the ones that fail.

There are other failures in the affiliate marketing world as well, and they usually give up because of one of the following reasons.

5 Reasons Affiliate Marketers Fail

They Never Start

The first and most common reason people fail is they never start. Whether they think it is a scam, or they think they can get rich quick and find out there is work involved, or whether they are too afraid to put themselves out there, something prevents them from taking that first step.

What is the first step? It can be different for everyone but could involve taking free training, paying for a more advanced course, reaching out to a mentor, or joining a Facebook group.

Spencer Mecham Affiliate Marketing Free Course

Spencer Mecham Affiliate Marketing Free Course

I was interested in affiliate marketing so I took a free course from Spencer Mecham called, “The Ultra-Boring Process I used to Create a 7-figure Affiliate Revenue.” It got my feet wet, gave me some inspiration, and led me to purchase an $897 course from Spencer as well, called “Affiliate Secrets 2.0.

So if you want to succeed, START!

They Learn Too Much

OK, so here’s the trap. The first step is to jump in and learn, but it’s where people that start tend to stay.

And it’s a deadly trap.


Take a free course. Jot down some notes. Learn from others. What is the next step?

The next step is you need to take action and start to learn for yourself.

What happens if you constantly learn from others and keep signing up for free courses is that you will eventually learn that EVERYONE has a free course, and EVERYONE has something to impart, but the 27 emails you subscribed to with free courses, who now email you every day create OVERWHELM.

It gets to be too much. You have to learn to know when you have learned too much. This leads into the next reason people fail.

Why So Many People Fail at Affiliate Marketing #affiliatemarketing Click To Tweet

They Consume More than they Create

People who fail are on the sidelines. They are like the fan on the front row seat who is cheering on the team and getting all excited but isn’t really playing the game.

You need to get in the game. If you see someone doing a livestream on Facebook sharing info about a product, then maybe you should consider doing a livestream yourself.

key to affiliate marketing

Photo by Brooke Lark on Unsplash

If you are reading an incredible blog (why thank you) that talks about a topic you are interested in, then maybe you should write some content and publish it.

If you see a YouTube video that has valuable information and at the same time are thinking, “I knew most of that”, then maybe you should start a YouTube channel and start posting.

Stephen Larsen is a network marketer who is also an expert at sales and funnels and such and has lots of clients who hire him as a coach. He’ll look over their sales funnels and give them advice, and often he’ll get asked by people, “What is the most legitimate path to becoming an expert?” This was his response in email form.

“Steve, how would you do it over again?”

I’d start publishing earlier…

“Steve, what’s the BIGGEST thing I could do to have success?”

Publish regularly…

“Steve, is there any single greatest tip you’d give after sitting so close to Russell Brunson?”

Take your phone out, hit record, and say stuff…

“Steve, how long does it take the average person to do this?”

I’m not average and who cares about the clock…. Publish about it…

“Steve, what’s the most important part of funnel building that I can focus on…”

You can have rough-to-mediocre sales message, offer, and funnel building skills and it’ll all be ok if you’re…. publishing..

“Steve, I need to be better before I start publishing.”

Cool, did you talk about that feeling on your latest publishing episode?!

There’s very little reason I can think of … wait… nope…

There’s NO reason I can think of for why you shouldn’t be publishing. I’ve never found a negative, even when I sucked.

My friends…


You can’t be good at them unless you practice them…

Why not build a following (the real asset in business) and PUBLISH your stories?

Dunno… but i’ll publish about it…

They Don’t Plan for a Marathon

Very early on in my affiliate marketing journey, I reached a point where I was completely overwhelmed. I saw what everyone else was doing, I saw their successes, I saw their expertise, and I didn’t think I could ever get there.

One of my goals is to win a dream car from ClickFunnels, and in order to do that, I would need to have 100 people sign up for Click Funnels through my link and become paying members. (So, if you want ClickFunnels and want to help a guy out, click here > Help Ben Get His Dream Car)

On one of my bad days as I was looking up on the top of that mountain, I reached out to James Hurst who is a ClickFunnels dream car winner and I asked him this question:

“James, I see so many people doing incredible things, and they are so much more advanced than I am. Is there even a chance for me to succeed, or should I just quit now?

His response was exactly what I needed to hear. His response made me determined to never quit, but to keep going.

His response was this, “Are you in it for the long haul?”

And the answer inside my head was, “YES I AM.”

I never started in the affiliate marketing world to get rich quick. I knew that it would take months and years to build a foundation – and that foundation would consist of continued learning. Learning the principles to follow, and learning about the tools that could help me to make my income passive.

If you are starting on the path to passive income through affiliate marketing, KNOW THIS! It is a marathon, and if you don’t view it as such, you are going to quit at mile marker three.

They Never Find a Mentor

You can make it in the affiliate marketing world alone. You can read every book in the world on the subject, you can download every free course, you can follow every YouTuber who is crushing it with affiliate marketing, and you can do this all within 8-11 years.

But that it too long, and it will overwhelm you and make you want to roll up in a ball in the corner of your room.

Instead, take Tony Robbins’ advice when he said to model the success of one person. Find one successful person in your desired niche and do what they do. Listen to what they say. Publish as they publish. Sell the things they sell. Sign up to be an affiliate for the companies that they are affiliated with.

In some cases your mentor is unreachable. Perhaps they are so rich and famous that they just don’t have the time to have a personal relationship with everyone.

What I’ve found to be more common though, is that if you are willing to invest in a relationship with someone, they are willing to communicate with you in their private Facebook groups, or through their YouTube channel, etc.

If you are willing to comment on their content and invest in their courses, they will make themselves available to you. At the end of the day, they want a tribe of people who view them as an expert and a good person, so if they see you are trying they will try.

Where to Go from Here?

You’ve probably read this post and been able to see yourself falling into one of these traps. It’s OK. We all do it. If you want success, tackle one of these traps today. If you are not publishing content, publish. If you are following too many people, stop. Follow 1 or 2. If you haven’t done anything yet, pencil in 30 minutes to learn about a topic that interests you.