Today is my son Alex's 9th birthday.
Many thoughts went through my mind this morning, including how awesome he's turned out, how much older we both are and how fortunate he is that I haven't accidentally lost him somewhere, mistakingly injured him (seriously) or inadvertently made him overweight by feeding him too much junk food.
It also brought up the memory of leaving the hospital with him after he was born. I remember the nurse handing him to me along with two sheets of paper on how to take care of him. I freaked out, as the first thing that popped into my mind was that the instruction booklet to my new cappuccino maker had over 50 pages. How on earth was I supposed to take care of a kid with only 2 pages of reference material?
So while I'm being all sappy, just go with me for a moment while I give you 5 good reasons why affiliate marketing is like raising a child.
1) In as much as you can't learn everything about raising a child from a book, there is no way you can learn affiliate marketing from any book. Yes, there are a number of guides to help you along the way, but mastering either requires common sense, hands-on experience, lots of testing and stick-to-itiveness.
2) Children and your affiliate marketing business are both tiny dictators. Both require a lot of attention all of the time, even when other important “life things” come up. Just as you wouldn't leave your baby with a stranger, you can't leave your business unguarded. They are both full-time commitments.
3) Both children and your affiliate marketing business will make you stop and examine life on a small and large scope. The smell of a child's freshly washed hair can make the grouchiest parent's heart melt, just as checking stats on on a new campaign that's kicking-butt can make a grouchy affiliate marketer begin to smile. Both kids and your affiliate marketing business can teach you so much; especially when to stop to smell the roses.
4) Just when you think you have affiliate marketing mastered, something new comes along that you have to learn in order stay on top of your game. Your kids will force you to stay on your game as well. Yesterday you helped them with their ABC's, today you have to pull “long division” from the ol' hard drive so that you can help them with their math homework. (Or worse, they'll wind up in a gifted class that is teaching them the stock market and now you have to learn about it so that you don't feel like an idiot when your 9-year old is talking options to you.)
5) Kids and affiliate marketing can both leave you frustrated, befuddled and panic-stricken. (I don't believe this point requires any further elaboration.).
Affiliate marketing and raising kids are some of the most mysterious, challenging and fulfilling experiences that a person can undertake on their own free will. I admire anyone who has done both.
Today however, I’d argue raising kids is more rewarding for the long-haul!
Happy Birthday, Alex!