Badges? We don't need no stinkin' badges!
 
Badges? We don't need no stinkin' badges!
By Nana Gilbert-Baffoe, View comments

In my last email I closed off with this quote from Jeff Bezos. "Your margin is my opportunity." I like to think of it in this modified and generalized form of "Your weakness is my opportunity".

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Let's play a game of chess. Actually never mind, I'm not that good at chess so I'll have chess grandmaster Magnus Carlsen by my side and have him tell me what moves to make instead.

See what I did there? I changed the rules and completely disrupted any chance you may have had in winning. The funny thing about rules and restrictions is that most of them only exist in your head or in the heads of others. Let me show you a simple 3 step framework you can use to identify and break out of your own self imposed rules and limitations.

Step 1.

First write down all the rules you think apply to your life or business.

Step 2.

Go down the list, and for each item ask yourself these 2 whys?

Why do I have to do it this way?

Why is everyone doing things this way?

If the first things that come to mind sound like the following, "This is how it's always been done", "That's what everyone does", "It can't be done any other way" or even "It's too difficult to do it differently" it's a sign that you and others are stuck running your business or life under arbitrary limitations that do nothing but hold you back.

Step 3.

Finally ask yourself. How?

How can I break free of this mindset? How can I leverage this limiting rule to disrupt my competition?

Amazon"s Bezos disrupted the physical and online bookstore market by changing and ignoring the rules of the game being played by the then big booksellers. Today many of them are out of business and as of this writing, Amazon's market cap hovers around $140 billion give or take.

Ok enough about Amazon, let"s look at how you can apply this to affiliate marketing. Let"s work with just one example for now.

Step 1. Here"s one rule you probably have: "Never hire or work with anyone because, they will jack my campaigns and run off with everything I've worked so hard for"

Step 2. Why do you think the above is true? Well, everyone knows someone who"s had a campaign stolen. It"s hard to find someone you can trust to work with, especially when you are only interacting via chat or email.

Step 3. How can you use these limiting rules and fears to your advantage? Get out and network more, attend local events such as Meetup202. It's much easier to evaluate and vet someone youve met and interacted with in real life. I met Wes, the original founder and developer of Tracking202 and Prosper202, at the very first Meetup202 in San Francisco. Every single Tracking202 employee was a friend made from the SF Meetup202 group or from conferences such as Affiliate Summit. Next work on minor projects with your new found friend(s) and keep expanding to bigger projects as you grow to trust them more. With your combined efforts you will be able to move faster and come up with numerous great ideas and angles. Once you are in your groove, you"ll generally outdo someone stuck in the old way of thinking that working solo is the way to go. I haven't met anyone making 6 figures plus a month as a 100% solo affiliate. But if that's you, drop me a line, I'd love to talk to you.

The affiliate team has redefined the rules of affiliate marketing, a 3 person team, marketer, designer and developer working in sync is like a pitting an elite Navy SEAL team against cave men.

The days of the unsophisticated performance marketer is over. The industry has matured, and to compete effectively, you must shed the old ways of thinking. Because there"s always a hungry affiliate out there who is ready to take your lunch and eat it while you helplessly watch.

In my next post, I'll share some more simple but highly effective things you can do right now that will allow you to place the game under different rules and put you at multiple levels above the average affiliate.

I"ll leave you with a Game of Thrones Quote. It"s not much of a spoiler, but out of respect, highlight the text to read it.

"Harren the Black thought this castle would be his legacy. Greatest fortress ever built. Tallest towers, the strongest walls. The Great Hall had thirty-five hearths. Thirty-five, can you imagine? Look at it now. A blasted ruin. Do you know what happened? ... Dragons happened. Harrenhal was built to withstand an attack from the land. A million men could have marched on these walls and a million men would've been repelled. But an attack from the air, with dragonfire... Harren and all his sons roasted alive within these walls. Aegon Targaryen changed the rules. That's why every child alive still knows his name, three hundred years after his death."  - Tywin Lannister

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