Kirsty’s Affiliate Hangover Cure – Cleansing Lemon and Ginger Tea!!

Quick Tips 6 Comments »

In honour of the fact I know a number of UK affiliates will have been “networking to the max” at the Speakeasy last night I have decided to help out all those poor delicate souls by publishing my very own cleansing hangover cure.

This should help rehydrate, calm those churny tummies, and make all the affiliates who have partied just a wee bit too hard at the free bar feel a little bit better again!

Kirsty’s Affiliate Hangover Remedy

Ingredients (based on using a 2 mug tea infuser):-

Half a Lemon

Half a Lime

1 – 2 tsp of freshly sliced ginger.

Boiling water.

Optional: 2 Hedex Extra to serve.

Instructions: –

  • Chop lemon into 3 or 4 slices whilst attempting to stay upright. Wonder why the knife sounds so damned loud. Place lemon into teapot.
  • Repeat with lime, and try to ignore the flashbacks from the evening before. Do so with only one eye open if it helps you aim the knife more effectively.
  • Add your chopped ginger.
  • Pour boiling water into the pot, leave to infuse for 5 minutes. Use the time to ponder if those last 5 rounds of Sambuccas really were the hilariously good idea they seemed.
  • Serve in the drinking vessel of your choice.
  • Repeat recipe until you feel human again.

My recommended method of intake is to have 2 mugs of this, let it rest in the tummy for 5 to 10 minutes, and then complete the hangover cure with a monster bacon sarnie with lashings of sauce. Allow bacon to do its stuff, before treating your poor punished body to some more cleansing tea for dessert.

This recipe will also work if you use a mug to infuse your ingredients and can also be used in non affiliate hangover situations. These include, colds, flu, tummy upsets, and when you’re just feeling golly gosh darned sluggish and under the weather. A great detox that’ll leave you feeling lovely inside and out 😉

Now don’t say I never try to do anything to enhance your health and wellbeing. This blog is also about the affiliate mind and soul don’t you know. Well, either that or I’m burning time instead of working again. You decide!!


Affiliates Are From Jupiter and Merchants Are From Mars

Affiliate Management 3 Comments »

Hello?  Hello? Is there anyone out there? Merchants… it’s me, Kirsty!

Despite all the networks, talented agency types, and in-house affiliate managers there still seems to be an issue with communication between us Jupiterites and the Martians who we work for. Somewhat puzzling, because lots of people seem to be shouting about their affiliate programmes. What I don’t understand is why do I never seem to hear the right ones?!?!

It’s Like Being Single Again…

Lingerie site owner with GSOH, ample traffic assets, and penchant for selling copious amounts of knickers.

Seeks like minded underwear or hosiery merchant for underwear fun and long term relationship. Reply to PO Box 157, Jupiter.

A few years ago I’d wondered at the lack of approaches by merchants, but put it down to not having quality content sites.  However, having remedied this in recent years I still find the number of “do you think you might be able to feature us on your site” type approaches surprisingly disappointing.

I’m not saying such approaches are non existent.  As a good example of sods law two nice agency people have approached me with very interesting undies sites in the last week. However lets not let the facts get in the way of a good rant here – I still find it surprising that this doesn’t happen more often, particularly given that I now have nice content sites in several niches.

So What’s The Issue?

There could be several reasons why merchants aren’t flooding me with requests to promote them and prostrating themselves at my bejewelled affiliate feet: –

  • I don’t have bejewelled feet, and if I did merchants most probably wouldn’t grovel at them. Bummer. Still, a few free bras or the odd box of chocolates wouldn’t go amiss.
  • People don’t do “Affiliate Research” any more because we’re rude buggers and don’t respond, thus making such pursuits an unproductive waste of time.
  • The best use of management resources is targeting the 5% of affiliates that’ll drive 85% of your sales. Big sites such as can drive massive volumes.
  • My location – maybe face to face networking is where the red hot merchant action is at. Australia makes it difficult for me to meet people over a nice beverage or ten.
  • Too many merchants view affiliate marketing and management as a “passive” process. Build a programme and they will come. Which, of course, they quite often don’t. Said merchants then throw in their programme and tell anyone who’ll listen that “affiliate marketing is shite, and doesn’t work.”

Perhaps what it comes down to is that affiliate marketing is a lot of work, and the online nature of the industry, combined with the problems of attempting to manage and communicate with a large pool of business partners (many of whom aren’t available during business hours), means we get shoved on the “too hard” pile. Overall though, I think my 85:5 rule point above is probably very close to the mark.

The Solution?

Hah, I’m backing away from this one!  Too big a question for this affiliate blogger to answer without descending into utter conjecture and upsetting people who spend their entire working lives trying to look after us affiliates. Technology driven solutions such as Affiliate Window’s catchily named “Darwin” affiliate admin area may help considerably.

And Of Course, It’s A Two Way Street…

I’m also aware that this is my business and it’s my responsibility to build it and find new people to partner with on my own.  Maybe merchants prostrating themsleves at my feet, or even finding out about me before I start sending them sales is just a romanticised pipe dream.


Today Is The First Day Of My New Affiliate Life…

Affiliate Tools 19 Comments »

Apologies for the longer than usual radio silence by the way. I went on a holiday to celebrate the end of the destruction of my home!

Yep, that’s right…  Today was my first proper day back at work after all the general noise and mess of our renovation project. During the 3 months of utter chaos I found it unbelievably difficult to get any actual work done but I was determined to at least do something with the time that I could look at and say “that was really a worthwhile achievement”.

Kicking Office Boredom into Touch…

Back in March I realised that the way I’ve been working just isn’t jiggling my affiliate mojo any more. With that in mind I set about analysing how we use time and what it would cost to significantly reduce the amount of time spent engaged in repetitive tasks that aren’t particularly specialised.

So What’s Been Drinking Up Our Working Hours?

I decided to look at two key things: –

  • Writing Content
  • Posting Content

Short phrases, but these two things are a huge part of what keeps our business moving and growing.  For the last 15 months Duncan and I have done a tremendous amount of this as we’ve shifted the business away from reliance on PPC and put a lot of effort into making the sites we do send PPC traffic to unique and filled with added value for the site user.

It’s Been Great, But Dear God It’s Boring!

We had a sit down and worked out how much time we were spending on average doing this important, but frankly simple, task. You ready?

Time Kirsty Spends Writing & Posting Content: 35 Hours Per Month

Time Duncan Spends Posting Content: 40 Hours Per Month

Total: 75 Hours Per Month

Thats An Awful Lot Of Hours!

Not only is that a mahoosive chunk of time, I realised that it also represented a bottleneck. I’ve been outsourcing some content writing for quite some time now to increase output.  However, Duncan had no more time he could devote to posting up said content without going mad with boredom and letting other important tasks slide. In fact, for a long time now he’s struggled to keep up with all his tasks and I’ve started “slacking off” because I was getting fed up.

It Occurred To Me That All of This Was Work That Someone Else Could Do. So…

  • I got a friend to write me a WordPress script that will post all our content for us from a CSV spreadsheet.
  • I increased my order with my content writer(s) so that output was the same as previously, and then added 20% for good measure. All content is now output into csv format by the writer all ready for posting.

This means that not only have I freed up 75 hours that Duncan and I can do something else with every month, I’ve removed a bottleneck that was stopping us from growing the business more quicky.

How Much Has Freeing 75 Hours Cost Us?

Content: £800 per month

Script: £0 (excellent mates rate eh?!)

This means that to free up no less than 5 days per month each (and bearing in mind we only work an average of 17 days per month) we are paying the roughly £10 an hour to have someone else do  tasks we really have grown to hate and therefore have started to do badly.  30% of our workload has now been lifted and at a cost that represents a *lot* less than 30% of our business profits.

Obviously I will have to spend some time every month sorting out who is writing what, but I’m hoping to get that down to about a morning’s work at the start of each month.

I Feel Great!

It’s a great feeling to have finally sorted this out. Words can’t express how good I feel so I shall leave y’all with a picture from my recent wee break that really sums it all up.


Ahhh… that is SO much better 😉

P.S. I’m hoping to now have a little more time to spend on here engaged in writing I really do enjoy 😀


Ask Kirsty – Pros and Cons of Datafeeds?

Ask Kirsty 7 Comments »

Hi Kirsty,

Jason Dodd posted a data feed article here last September and I’m curious as to your thoughts about using such.

It does not appear your lingerie site utilizes a data feed. Do you have any sites that do use a data feed?

Pluses would certainly be the quantity of products and possibly an easier setup, plus their would be fresh content.

The negatives I see would possibly be poor product selection, leading to poor CTR, etc. Though you can categorize the products shown, I don’t believe you
could have complete control. Another might be the commission structure. I would bet that you get better commission rates with those product vendors that do not
have data feeds available.



Hey Scott,

Actually my lingerie site does utilise a feed, they all do.

I don’t feel though that a data feed provides fresh content. It provides valuable choice for your visitors which I reckon improves your chances of getting a conversion by giving them lots of choice / a sense that the site they’ve arrived on will have what they want. As all the information in the feed is syndicated to lots of other sites I can’t really see it adding “fresh content” type value. However, if you do something clever with your datafeed and combine it with other useful information you would certainly achieve that aim.

I think the trick with data feeds is to choose which ones you use on your site very carefully. Make sure that the merchant has a really good selection of products, or use a fusion of feeds to create your own resource which will add value to your site and users. The only thing you have to monitor when doing that is conversion rates of the various merchants you feature. If you have one or two in your feed section that convert badly you will leak traffic to them that would probably otherwise have gotten you a sale. As for people without product feeds having better commissions – I’ve never seen this anywhere. Feeds are generally provided by most merchants. They’re a valuable tool to really increase visibility of their products and in my experience as an affiliate manager they can have a profound effect on profit levels on your programme. There are some mighty clever chappies out there doing interesting and creative things with feed sites that gives merchants access to traffic they’d never have gotten otherwise.

One of the negatives you’re dead on about is the issues with feed categorisation. This is the absolute bane of most affiliates who use feeds. Often feeds are very poorly categorised with merchants not taking care to break products down into logical sections. It can also be hard to get multiple feeds working properly together thanks to different merchants categorising products in subtly different ways. However, this problem can be used to your benefit if you’re clever enough and take the time to work out a solution. It means you end up with a far better resource than other affiliates who took one look and chucked the task straight on the “too hard” pile.
One good example of something very clever being done with affiliate data feeds is the Easy Content Units system.  They’ve done all the hard work for affiliates and have created a highly flexible system that has helped lots of affiliates do the clever things they’d like to do with their feeds but lack the technical ability to achieve. Definately well worth an experiment.


Pass The Affiliate Oxygen!

Affiliate Annoyances 8 Comments »

Whenever I’m talking about affiliate marketing I always tell people I “eat sleep and breathe” my work and am totally passionate about it.  I genuinely didn’t realise how much this was the case until these past few weeks.  I’ve been living on a building site since the start of February and all the noise, mess, dust and general intrusion into my work and personal space has had a huge impact upon my effectiveness and concentration.

Concentration? Sorry?  Eh?  Now, What Was I Saying…..

When I work it’s like I’m immersed in a rather fabulous underwater world.  I spend my workday submerged in a sea of information, ideas, and concepts which captivate me utterly.  Once I’m “under” the day vanishes in what seems like seconds and I’m left at close of play feeling content and empowered.

I’ve always suffered from dreadful concentration so I’ve just spent 10 excruciating weeks floating at the surface amongst all the chaos and noise of our building project watching the faint and indistinct lines of all the things that usually fill my working day whizzing past without so much as stopping to say “G’day” before vanishing into the distance in a blur. As I watch all the things I should be involved in slipping away I feel vague, hopeless and cut off – yet helpless to do anything about it.

Get Out Of My House!

I’m now at the stage where I’ve decided enough is enough. I’m suffering from terrible insomnia, I’m very stressed out, and I don’t feel like I’m in control of what’s going on with my business any more. Affiliate marketing is like oxygen for me, and without it I feel completely suffocated.  So I’ve called a halt to the building  job for now (which was mostly finished inside the house anyhow) and am really looking forward to things getting back to normal.  I’ll be letting the builder return in a few weeks to do some finishing off on the house exterior once I’ve had some time to myself. We will have a plasterer in next week, but he’s a very quiet worker so I’ve decided to let him finish his work 😀

It’s About More Than The Money

As I was lying wide awake last night (yet again) I started wondering if the way I’m feeling, although perhaps extreme, is an indicator of why very few people who do well at affiliate marketing are in it purely because they saw a way to make money and set out to exploit it in a formulaic way.

I love the creative processes involved in identifying new things to market, trying to get inside the minds of the people likely to buy them, designing landing pages that will appeal to them, and working out ways to scale and increase traffic and conversions.  I’m not ashamed to admit that I still get a little excited every time I wake up in the morning and realise it’s time to go back to work.  I arrive at my desk within minutes of waking, clutching that first cuppa of the day and keen to hook up to the oxygen supply to breathe in more of what the affiliate world has on offer.

Does this border on the obsessive? Probably.  Do I care? Not a damned jot!

See You All Back In The Water Next Week…

Now that those noisy buggers are about to be evicted from my space I’ll see y’all back in the deep end on Monday 😉


Ask Kirsty – What Would You Do if You Were Starting Out Again?

Ask Kirsty 9 Comments »

*shudder* well this is a question that gives me the total willies and no mistake about it!  Ben wants to know how I’d approach things if I were just starting out…

I wondered if I could ask two questions, as I like your philosophy of no-nonsense building content sites, accepting that their is no shortcut or get rich quick.

1 – If you were to start again with no affiliate sites or domains, how would you go about building up an online business?  Would you still do content sites,or maybe look at something else considering the web landscape of 2010?  Would you, for instance, write hundreds of articles before going live?  Would you concentrate on one site or several?   Just any comments on strategy.

2 – If someone got down to building content affiliate sites with SEO, full time, and followed your philosophy of no substitute for hard work, do you think it’s feasible to make a living of AM within a year?

For background, I’m a good writer and know my stuff re building websites.  I also know the theory of SEO and Internet Marketing, though have only ever really made pocket money in return for my very part time efforts so far.

Any comments really appreciated!


Really good questions Ben!

1. I would definately still go down the content route although without any existing sites to run I might well experiment with marketing via things that interest me at the moment such as Twitter and Facebook groups. I haven’t really yet found the time to really play around with those, but I still feel that the majority of my online strategy would be around the creation of quality content.

I would take a micro approach to building and developing any sites. Rather than trying to create a whole big site and everything that went with it offline I’d sort of section it off into managable chunks. You can create a site that for all intents and purposes functions well using just 10 to 15 pages and add on more as you go. This means you can get search engine traffic trickling through the site quicker and use what you learn from it to shape future efforts.

The question of concentrating on one site or several is a difficult one. From a resources point of view, only doing one as a newbie makes a lot of sense. However, from a “progressing your business and testing lots of niches” point of view it makes less sense. One of the things I think I’d find difficult if I had to start out as a newbie in 2010 would be niche identification. With 90% of content sites I’ve created I’ve already known I was going to make money with them, what some of the bestselling products were to get me kicked off, and which merchants I should concentrate my efforts upon. This is a huge benefit, and means I’ve only really put effort into writing content I already knew would yield profit. Huge advantage for my business.

Before you get all excited and ask me for my big secret method, I’ve got this advantage because in the past I’ve been able to promote merchants via direct PPC. None of the merchants I currently promote allow this any longer (or if they do I’m not in their closed group!). Having been around affiliate marketing for a few years has definately given me an advantage as the barriers to entry have risen behind me with various new rules from both search engines and merchants about how we can promote our affiliate wares.

I think if I were starting out now and having to deal with not being able to use my old testing methods I’d probably do bags of research and start up 4 or 5 sites using the micro approach above staggering launch for each (say one every 4 to 6 weeks), sending PPC to test the products, and then giving priority for further development to whichever one showed most promise whilst also still moving forward with the others. In all good conscience though, I’m not at all sure I can advise anyone to jump right in and do that. I’d do it, but should you? It could just be a recipe for a lot of time wasted if the effort is not correctly applied. So if we want to talk about what YOU should do rather than me, I’d say… do one site first and see what you learn from that.

2. Shorter answer here – YES. But (and you had to know that was coming) that really does depend on your abilities as a marketer. Your skills in writing and site building mean you’re off to a good start. However there are so many variables that come down to your own mindset that it’s difficult for me to give and answer you can rely upon. Some people make a good living within a few weeks, others take a few years. Where you fall is entirely down to your own levels of effort and intuition about what people might buy and how you can effectively target them when they’re doing it.

One thing that is guaranteed: – People who work hard at anything rarely walk away empty handed. Keep focused, keep trying, and do not give up when you have your first disaster!


Affiliate Quick Tips – Stopping WordPress Removing Line Breaks

Quick Tips, Wordpress 11 Comments »

“Arrggh!!!  F***ing WordPress!!!  Why won’t it just leave my damned formatting be????”

Sound familiar? Then you may be suffering from a well known affiliate affliction known as “WordPress Formatting Rage”.  Commonly experienced right after you’ve spent an age carefully positioning text or images to create a landing page that is the very epitome of perfection – right up until you hit the save button.  At this point WordPress’ WYSIWYG editor code cleanup thingamyjig springs into action like a lithe gazelle and proclaims “Oh ho!! Look at all those line breaks. We don’t want those cluttering up the place do we?”

The result is often less than pleasing and results in a frustrating few minutes spent laboriously re-entering those line breaks (It just must have been a mistake after all. What system would be silly enough to remove them?).  This then brings us back to the first line of the post with a few extra profanities added to reflect the increase in general frustration levels.

Fortunately There is a Fix

Tiny MCE Advanced (download & more info here)

Simply install this wonderous little plugin, and select the “Stop removing my damned well line breaks” option which is located in the big red box on the plugin admin page.

You can then enjoy the bliss that is being able to add line breaks wherever you please as well as having access to some other cool additions such as emoticons, search and replace functionality whilst editing,  support for tables, and heaps more.

“Ahhhh…. that’s better!!”


Paid On Results Reveal the Effectiveness of Cookieless Tracking

Affiliate Networks 5 Comments »

Ever wondered just how effective cookieless tracking technology really is? Wonder no longer!  I do love a good metric and got a lovely end of month surprise when I logged into my POR account this morning.  For the first time ever you can now see just how much of the revenue in your affiliate account would have been lost to deleted cookies if it weren’t for the alternate tracking methods deployed by the network.

I Have To Say I’m Seriously Impressed…

Upon checking out my revenue report I was presented with a very swish pie chart showing me what percentage of my sales was tracked by one of the secondary methods.  It looked like this: –

A whopping 23.04% of all the commissions I earned with Paid on Results in March were credited to my account using this technology. I put a reasonable amount traffic through this network and the amount of revenue I would have lost is very significant. Certainly enough to give me a bit of a light headed moment when I saw it in black and white!

My New Best Mates…

For me this metric being made visible really reinforces my trust in the Paid on Results network.  I’ve now been shown the cold hard facts of how they help me to make bigger profits, and I’m REALLY liking what I see. I was already a big fan of the more personal service I enjoy with them.  As a case in point they told me to look out for a new feature coming in a few hours whilst answering a support ticket at some ungodly hour of the night, and asked for feedback on their new affiliate interface generally.

Not every affiliate network has implemented cookieless tracking just yet. If you’ve ever thought to yourself “gosh, it’s funny that my traffic with Network X does much better than what I send to Network Y”, maybe it’s time to consider it might be more than just a coincidence.  This new report has reinforced to me the importance of weighing up more than just the merchants I want to promote – it’s clearly important to also look at how robust the tracking platform appears to be.

A+ to Paid on Results for transparency. Anyone else going to step up to the plate?

Read more here.


Ask Kirsty – Pinging Services & Affiliate Performance Evaluation

Ask Kirsty 2 Comments »

Fellow Australian affiliate Zane McIntyre has a couple of questions about making sure he’s doing the most he can to maximise his opportunities for exposure and revenue maximisation:-

Dear Kirsty,

I have a few things that I wanted to clarify. Generally information where I cannot seem to find a definitive answer on the www and would love to have your thoughts.

Question 1: To Ping or Not to Ping?

I have read alot about WordPress guru’s using a wordpress approved ping list. By default pingomatic is used by wordpress, is this sufficient or should we expand our ping lists to ensure all the blog catalogs and news sites out there are being notified of updates to our sites? I attempt at all times to stay within the realms of legitimacy for my sites and my only concern is if I am pinging a plethora of sites out there will I be classified as ping spamming?

When it comes to promoting your site and increasing your visits there is no golden button that says “Click this to increase your traffic” but I have heard that traffic can be increased by pinging a wider variety of sites.

Below is a list I found and was contemplating using.

Question 2: Sitting back and evaluating the true performance of your site.

Recently I have had a slump in sales to my sites and believe this is only a sign of the times as my hits have not decreased and my content is increasing every day. So I am using this time to sit back and evaluate all of my sites and have them well positioned for when the economy picks up again.

I am evaluating my sites with the use of pretty excel spreadsheets to get a very clear overview of my monthly profits. I start by noting the site, monthly visits, monthly profit and dividing the profit by the visits to get an idea of how much each visitor as an average is spending. This gives me an idea each month to see if I have performed better than the last and use the hits divided by profit to see where I stand. If nothing changes or the profit per visitor is not increasing even though my hits are increasing I know I need to see where my performance is lacking. I do this by checking Google Analytics to see my top 25-50 pages or posts and go through them to see why they may not be converting. With this information I can then edit those pages to have more calls to action or clearly define what I want the visitor to do next.

Am I doing this correctly or do you have any suggestions to how I can better evaluate my sites performance? All of my traffic is purely organic and I do not run any PPC campaigns at this time, this is simply because of the uncertainty of PPC as of late with Google getting sand in their cracks and banning accounts etc so I don’t want PPC to be my be all and end all.

Can’t wait to hear from you.


Zane McIntyre

Good questions Zane, and thanks for the list of pinging services too!

Question 1. I must confess that with my own sites I simply let pingomatic do it’s stuff. I therefore have absolutely no idea how much traffic value one might expect to get from pinging such services.  However I have no doubt that there will be absolutely no issue with you using as many of those services as you desire as using them seems to be included in just about every “increasing your blog traffic 101″ type post out there.

Speaking of distributing content, if you are investing a lot in adding lovely unique content to your site don’t forget to set your feed settings to “summary” under your reading settings in the WordPress control panel.  This will help prevent nasty old spammy content robbers from purloining your content for evil purposes. Not that Google is usually fooled by this sort of carry on, but its blasted well irritating.  I can also heartily recommend using the RSS Footer Plugin which will mean any posts reproduced from your feed will include a link back to your site.

Question 2.

It already sounds like you are doing a pretty good job of analysing your traffic and ensuring that you are keeping an eye firmly on the bottom line. It’s also a good idea to constantly look at your top pages.

I’m not clear from your question how much you are focusing upon which of those top 25 to 50 pages are actually creating your profit? It sounds as if you may just be focusing on the pages generating the most traffic. If your merchant or network doesn’t have a service in place where you can put a unique identifier into your URLs so you can see which links are bringing in the bacon, this may be the only avenue open to you.

However, if you are able to identify which pages are generating lots of conversions this will be incredibly valuable information to pass back into your campaigns.  Things are rarely spread evenly over every page on your site. Usually the 80:2o rule or something close to that will be at play. Therefore it’s immensely beneficial to be able to look at those pages and the products on them and have a think about why they are converting. Then you can see if you’re able increase what you are doing by creating more pages for similar products or items with similar selling points.

Another thing I tend to do is make sure I’m aware of how different blocks of traffic are performing as well as taking a view of site performance as a whole.  Often a particular type of traffic may not perform as well with a merchant whilst other traffic is a-ok. It is important for me to be able to switch the traffic elsewhere to see if I can better the EPC and conversion rate. I’ve recently done this for some of my underwear related traffic and increased profits by £300. Pretty good for an hours work updating my link file and a few minutes with a calculator!

I hope this has helped, and if anyone knows more about traffic from pinging services please do post in the comments section – I’d value the additional input!


Recognising When Your Work System Is No Longer Efficient

General 5 Comments »

Today I realised it has been just over a year since I cut my working hours and implemented a new work structure.  It has been a pleasing success and it has been a massive help in me pushing on my business to new heights and really forging ahead with a series of new sites which I’ve launched over the last 12 months.  Taking a structured approach has really been hugely beneficial for me. Until Now.

Scale and Replicate? Well, Up To A Point…

The issue I’m currently having is that a formulaic approach lacks imagination.  I have my daily set tasks but I’m starting to lose faith at the moment that they are actually the right ones, or even a good use of time relative to the results that they are producing now I’m entering a “maintenance phase”. By that I mean I’ve set up lots of sites and am now concentrating upon building up the income I get from them.

The truth is, my scheduled 2 hours per day of content writing has started to bore me dreadfully.  And so dreadfully that once I’ve done my allocated slog I’ve lost the passion and imagination to do very much else. I think it was workable before because I could focus on the end result – a series of sites to diversify my income. However, now I think I need to step back and take a look at the bigger picture.

Much Like Breaking Up… Letting Go is Never Easy

It’s a bit like splitting up with someone. You get that uneasy feeling that being with them just isn’t working out as well any more. Writing all those blog posts myself enabled me to really boost up the content and traffic on my sites as well as keeping an eye on longtail traffic opportunities.  However I’m increasingly not getting all the content I have scheduled for myself done. Because I simply don’t want to write it.  Even worse, my avoidance strategy (busying myself with some largely irrelevant bit of analysis or research) then extends beyond the blogging and starts to drag the rest of the day down.

It’s Not You, It’s Me

The thing is I’ve increasingly been realising recently that I need to take a dose of my own advice. Is that two hours every day being spent “working smarter” or am I just doing it because it’s permanently written into my daily action sheets? In the last couple of weeks I’ve realised the following: –

  • My many daily blog posts contribute to site traffic, but are less likely to generate sales than other more highly targeted pages.
  • It probably doesn’t matter any more whether its me writing the posts or someone else. Despite knowing hee haw about affiliate marketing my mother is managing to do a beautiful job of writing content for my sites. She’s even posting it up into HTML templates with extreme ease despite having no web design skills whatsoever. It takes me about 30 mins a week to create a work list for her detailing which articles I want done.
  • Continuing to write my own content of this nature is probably not the most efficient application of my skills.
  • If I outsource some or all of my daily blogging I will instantly have 2 hours free each day to use in other ways.

In Other Words… It’s Just Not Worth Me Doing It Any More!

I’ve already got some fledgling ideas about how I’m going to free myself from this task. Getting bestseller lists from merchants to create the areas to write posts about, creating structured spreadsheets for content writers to work from. However I shall consider them more carefully and perhaps do another post when I have it all worked out.

My aim now is to reduce my time spent writing from around 30 hours per month, to just 3 or 4 hours spent managing the writing process whilst I get other people to do it for me.  If I can concentrate for long enough in the building site that is laughingly known as my home at the moment I may just be able to come up with something.

I’m off to the mountains today for 2 nights to celebrate my birthday. Perhaps it’ll all become clear then 😉


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