Internet Marketing for Older Adults

As you navigate your journey as an online senior marketer, you will be faced with various forks in the road where you have to make a decision about the kinds of projects you intend to work on.

Sometimes, the choice will be easy, but other times you may struggle with making your selection. There are two major business models that can have you conflicted about where you should focus your time and effort.

These are being a product vendor versus being an affiliate marketer. Both have strong potential to bring in a good deal of profits, but you want to know the pros and cons of each so that you pick something that works best for you and your financial needs and expectations.

Time Required to Turn a Consistent Profit

Desperation is often the name of the game for many senior marketers who want to start an online business. They are trying to supplement their income or pay for something they need, so the time frame in which they can make money is important.

You need to consider which method allows you to earn faster in terms of a consistent profit, not just a one-time paycheck. You might have an easy time making your first five dollar commission by recommending something that you use in your household, but that may not convert into long-term profits.

First, let’s look at the profit consistency of being a product vendor. When you create your first info product about a niche topic that you have an interest in, you can make a large amount of money in a short amount of time.

Depending on how long it takes you to create the product, you could even have something ready tonight and go live with it in the morning. In most instances, however, it will take at least a few weeks to brainstorm an idea, research the topic, create the content, and then list it for sale.

So it may take longer to launch a product and see the return on your investment of time and effort. As for long-term consistency with that income, being a vendor of products it’s a great way to earn money repeatedly.

That’s because you can grow your line of products and you can promote them to your list of existing subscribers and buyers every time something new is released. Not only that, but the people who you recruit as affiliates to promote for you will also be sending reoccurring traffic and sales overtime.

As long as you create value and quality for their audience, their support alone can fortify your long-term earnings. Now let’s consider the time it takes to earn consistent profits as an affiliate.

You’ll be promoting for others, so you’ll need to factor in the time it takes to reach an audience – either through a blog or social media apps and sites. As long as you pick a niche with plenty to promote, you shouldn’t run out of options for earning commissions over time.

But one area where you might be disappointed is in how long it takes you to get paid. Depending on what you’re promoting and where it’s being sold or processed, you may be waiting to see the money hit your bank account for 60-90 days.

Usually, it comes faster, especially as you gain statistics for your account. But this is only really for digital info products. With tangible marketplaces, like Amazon, you’ll be waiting right along with everyone else.

In terms of consistency, as long as you continue creating new content to review products and maintain a presence in the niche as a strong source for viable recommendations, you should be able to keep the momentum up.

Investment of Money for Getting Started

Too often, you’ll see senior marketers complaining that they’d love to start and run an online business, but they have no money to get started. This truly isn’t an issue if you’re really serious about it.

You can create an info product and launch it with no upfront costs, allowing platforms to earn their portion by keeping back a small fee out of every sale. As an affiliate, you can start promoting products on social media sites and apps, so upfront money should never hold you back.

That being said, some people don’t want to operate on a zero dollar budget – they want to operate competitively with the same tools and investments that other niche leaders have at their disposal.

If you want to take the vendor route, then costs will vary. You will usually want to own your own domain (which can be anywhere from $0.99 to $17) and have a small hosting account (which is no more than $10 per month).

You can then create your info product yourself and only spend money on the tools you intend to use, such as video editing software like Camtasia (approximately $250). Or, you can outsource it to someone else, like a ghostwriter for $10 per page or so for an eBook.

For your sales copy, along with any graphics for it, you can again take the do it yourself route – or, you can outsource it to a ghostwriter who specializes in sales copy (usually $100 per page and up).

Some vendors hire someone like an affiliate manager on an hourly basis to go out and recruit affiliates for them, making the initial contact and then following up to make sure they have everything they need to promote.

As an affiliate marketer, your costs might be a little less or more, depending on what you feel is important to own. You’ll also need the same domain and hosting to operate a viable business that isn’t at risk of being shut down by a company.

You may want to purchase some or all of the products that you plan to review. If your site is all about treadmills, then of course you won’t be buying endless treadmills. But if it’s about MREs (meals ready to eat) in the survival niche, then you might invest in a variety box and after those are completed, purchase something new.

You can use Camtasia to edit the videos or use a freeware version called CamStudio. But it’s not necessary to create and publish your own reviews. You can even use text reviews with hyperlinks to the product from your blog.

Knowledge Needed to Showcase to Your Audience

There’s definitely a very big difference between vendors and affiliates when it comes to the knowledge needed to succeed in a niche. When you become a vendor of info products, your entire mission is to share insight with an audience who is looking to you for a thorough lesson about a topic.

If they have follow up questions, it will be you they come to and if you’re selling the courses, you have to be able and ready to address their needs. Besides the follow up, your course information needs to satisfy their desire to equate the value of your course with the price they paid.

If you don’t already have a lot of knowledge in a niche, that can be learned. Or, you can teach it from a beginner’s perspective as you, yourself learn. Just don’t claim to know more than you do.

Don’t let a lack of expertise close you off from leading a niche. You can help others just by being honest and upfront and showcasing things as you learn them. People often like learning from someone who is just above them in terms of expertise.

As an affiliate, your knowledge base may or may not need to be as extensive. Probably not. In most cases, you’re merely the go between who connects consumers with manufacturers of a product.

You might just go by the information that’s publicly available, such as price, features, and things like that. Or, you might want to convey your own insight about the product and how it compares to others, which would mean you’d need a little more education about the niche.

If it’s a digital product, you’d need to be aware of things such as the vendor’s reputation, the quality of the courses, and the viability of the strategy being recommended in the pages of the eBook or within each video module.

Usually, you won’t be the person the consumer turns to if and when they have questions after they purchase the products. If they buy a course you recommend on SEO< for example, they’ll go back to the vendor to ask questions.

When it comes to you, if you make poor recommendations and show a lack of true understanding about the niche and the needs of the target audience, they’ll stop coming to you for advice and instead find an affiliate who acts as a good guide for their purchases.

Income Potential for Each Option

Most people believe it all boils down to the money you stand to earn from your efforts. That’s a primary reason most seniors and other age groups even pursue this line of work, in addition to the perk of living a flexible lifestyle.

Both vendors and affiliates have the ability to earn quite a large sum of money if they consistently and vigorously work on their business. If they procrastinate and fail to take action, then both business models would be a struggle.

As an affiliate, your earnings can vary widely based on what you choose to promote and how often you conduct reviews. For example, promoting a digital info course that costs $97 and pays you a 50% commission will pay better than a $10 tangible product off Amazon.

There are so many things that can affect your conversions, too – including those outside of your control, like the call to action used by the seller or even the headlines on the sales page or color themes they chose.

You need to be building a list of subscribers so that you can generate reoccurring commissions with future recommendations of products they might like. Don’t allow the vendor to be the only one list building when you’re the person who attracted the visitor to your review blog in the first place.

As an affiliate, before you have a list, your commissions might start out small, but they’ll snowball into something bigger every month if you continue to strategically blog and bring in more traffic to your reviews.

There are many affiliates who started off earning under $100 the first month, only to grow it to a six figure income by the end of the year. Consistency and quality of your reviews will play a big role in how it unfolds for you.

As a vendor, you could earn a few hundred if you launch with no planning in place – or you may have a six figure launch if you do everything by the book. Of course, it could be anything in between, too.

To earn the most money, you’ll want to create cutting edge or thorough courses on specific topics within your niche. You’ll need the quality and standards to be high, so have someone edit the final product for you.

Make sure all of your branding is professional, that you choose a good date and don’t rush it to publication where no one has a chance to prepare their promotion. You’ll also want to cherry pick the best affiliates to bring onboard so that your launch explodes and your income does, too.

Technology Needed to Succeed Competitively

There are many free or low cost tools you can use to compete in the niche of your choice. But you want to make sure you have everything at your disposal that you need to create content, generate traffic, communicate with consumers and more.

Buying a domain and hosting so that you can install WordPress with any necessary plugins or themes is a foundational building block for your business. The installation of WordPress so that you can post tips and insight, product reviews and more is important to your ability to brand yourself as a niche leader.

A solid list building tool that’s reputable enough to get past spam filters and allow you to accept subscribers at a high count (like Aweber or GetResponse) is worthy of your investment of money and time in learning how to best use it.

An eCover creator or product image creator like Canva or SmartMockup is perfect for giving your items a professional appearance so that your content and products don’t appear amateurish.

A way to record videos and audio is helpful. You can use your computer or smart phone. Check to see if your recordings are of good quality. It may turn out that you need help with lighting or a microphone and pop filter that helps smooth out the sound.

Video editing software like Camtasia and a slide presentation tool like PowerPoint or Canva can help you made courses that inform and elevate your audience in knowledge. You can conduct screen capture recordings without ever having to be on camera.

Lastly, you’ll need a good payment processor to help you earn or accept commission payments. Most people use things like PayPal and Stripe to get paid for their products or affiliate earnings.

Keep in mind that while you may start off as either a vendor or affiliate, chances are the two careers will merge at some point as you gain experience and begin branching out to both pass on knowledge to others and connect consumers with the products that are right for them.