If you ask average affiliates what separates the super affiliates from everyone else, they’ll tell you things like “big lists” or “good connections” or “lots of traffic.”  You might have a few wiseacres doing a good impression of Captain Obvious by saying, “big commission checks” separate the average affiliates from the super affiliates.

Sure, all those things are true. But the thing is, every single super affiliate on the planet started at zero. They didn’t have a single person on their mailing list until they started building their list.  They didn’t have a lick of traffic until they started driving this traffic. They didn’t have good connections in the niche or anything else until they created or built those assets.

Point is, the biggest super affiliates in your niche were once like you. They started with nothing, just like you. No list, no traffic, no commission checks. But something happened along the way that gave them an edge.

So you wanna know the real secret of what separates the super affiliates from everyone else?

It’s this: they have the right mindset. And that makes all the difference in the world.

The good news is that if you don’t have this mindset, you can work on it. So let me share with you a peek inside the minds of the super affiliates.

Factor #1 – Super affiliates treat their business like a business, not a hobby.

There’s an old saying: “If you treat your business like a hobby, it will pay you like a hobby.” In other words, you’ll get paid bupkis if you just fiddle around and treat your business with anything less than the seriousness it deserves.

One of the problems with folks who treat their businesses like a hobby is that they’re afraid of failing. So as long as they pretend their business is just something fun they like to do in their spare time, then they never have to face the fear of failure. After all, a hobby is just for fun – you can’t “fail” at it.

Another problem with folks who treat their businesses like a hobby is that they’re afraid of what others might say. They don’t want to be judged. They listen to the naysayers who say things like, “When are you going to quit playing around and get a real job?”

It’s especially hard when these sorts of comments come from people close to you, like a spouse, family or friends.

If this sounds familiar, then I have one thing to say: stop living your life based on the opinions and approval of others. Life is short. This is your life. Do what you want, and forget about what anyone else has to say about it.

The second factor that separates the super affiliates from the average affiliates is that super affiliates are well aware of the many hats they wear.

Your average affiliate goes into the business thinking he’s a marketer. And so he pours all this time, energy and money into being a marketer… and then wonders why the commission checks aren’t reflecting all his hard work.

A super affiliate know he’s a marketer, but he’s also aware of all the other roles he needs to embrace in order to be successful. A super affiliate is a lead-builder, a sales person, a researcher, a trusted advisor, an authority figure and sometimes even just a good friend.

Super affiliates may also be entertainers, storytellers and darn good copywriters.  This is how they hook their prospects and keep them hanging on their every word.

Top affiliates may also be project managers and human resource managers if they do any outsourcing.

Super affiliates are also really good at seeing the big picture. Instead of getting tunnel vision by focusing on one aspect – such as promoting a certain product – they see how this one aspect fits into their overall business plan.

And that brings us to the next point…

The third factor that separates super affiliates from mediocre affiliates is that top affiliates have a plan.

What I’m talking about here is a specific, solid and well-thought out plan.

You see, saying something like “I plan to make more money” is NOT a plan.

Saying, “I plan to be the king of affiliates and have all others bow down before me” is NOT a plan.

Saying, “I plan to make gobs of money and then roll around in it naked every week” is also NOT a plan. It might make for an interesting video on YouTube, but it’s not a plan.

When I’m talking about a plan, I’m referring to a business plan. This is where you sit down and actually figure out your exact goals and the exact steps you need to accomplish these goals.

Your business plan will look at your strengths and weaknesses. Your business plan will look at your competitor’s strengths and weaknesses. Your business plan will figure out exactly how much time and money you’ll need to find your prospects, get them on your list, and start closing sales.

The fourth factor that separates the super affiliates from everyone else is that they know the real secrets of making sales.

An average affiliate takes up a churn and burn model, where they fill their blog with ads and blast out promos constantly to their newsletter list. They burn through prospects pretty fast, all the while telling themselves that anyone who didn’t buy wasn’t a “real” prospect anyway.

Super affiliates know that good leads are worth their weight in gold.  They know that high conversion rates don’t come solely from promoting good products with high-response sales letters. They know the high conversion rates aren’t based solely on “adding value” to an offer by giving away bonus products.

Sure, all of these things help. But super affiliates know the real secret to cashing in big time is to build a list of subscribers who know, like and trust you.

So forget about your churn and burn models or your “scorched earth” business plan. Focus on building an engaged, responsive audience… and you’ll know what it’s like to be the top affiliate in your entire niche, the one whom all the vendors flock to whenever they’re releasing a new product.

The fifth factor that separates the super affiliates from everyone else is that super affiliates focus on helping their customers FIRST.

If you focus on your own needs, then you’re going to be promoting some crappy products just because you know you can make a quick buck with them.

But if that’s your plan for becoming a super affiliate, then I suggest you get a sleazy suit, slick back your hair, and start doing that uber creepy thing where you point at people, wink and click your tongue like the stereotypical snake oil salesman.

Oh, and you might also get on good terms with your parents, because your lack of income will probably have you crashing in their basement for the foreseeable future.

If you want to get ahead, then I suggest you put your prospects and customers needs first. Don’t look at them like cash machines. Don’t look at them as the people who will pay for your next vacation or video game. Don’t get desperate when the electric bill is due and look to them to bail you out.

Yeah, I know – your affiliate marketing DOES pay the bills. I get that. But what you’ll find is that your affiliate business will make even more money if you focus on the needs of your prospects and customers FIRST.

So ask yourself, “What is the best way for me to help these folks solve their problems?”  Because as Zig Ziglar said, paraphrased, when you help people get what they want, then you’ll get what you want too.

Or here’s another way to think of it – money is just a measure of how much you’ve helped others. So do everything you can to solve their problems, and you might be surprised to find your bank account overflowing.

So that’s it for this time. I want you to really think about these mindset factors and other traits, and honestly assess whether you believe them and possess them. If not, get to work on changing that, because your financial situation won’t change until you change the way you view your affiliate business.

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