A lot of people that jump into Affiliate Marketing tend to stick to the same old stuff they've always done, and afraid to move forward and test the waters in other areas of "the game."
Let's be realistic, this is not 2008 anymore. People aren't making a killing with rebills, which is what helped but a big dent in the industry. We've had to learn how to do things differently, and most of us have moved into new territory, becoming Marketing Explorers. We're testing new things, failing quite often, but never giving up hope that we'll find something new, something that's not overdone. Something that can be the next gold rush of affiliate marketing.
These days, it seems that most people have all but given up on Google Adsense after Google started cracking down on rebill offers, 'farticles' and flogs. But you can still create a nice income with Google Adsense. You just have to be different...yes, you have to be realistic and not such an 'affiliate.' Google doesn't like thin sites and they don't like certain types of offers being run on sites that are being promoted from their core Business, Google Search. They're simply protecting their assets.
Build something bigger. Build something that provides value for the end-user and you will create something that's Google friendly. I've always argued with people that Google doesn't hate Affiliates, they hate lazy affiliates who think that they can run all over without following the rules. Let's face it, if you don't have a site that's SEO friendly -- you won't have a site that's PPC friendly. Always...ALWAYS keep SEO as your main focus when developing a new property and the Search Engines will be OK with those properties, even when you advertise with them via PPC.
The future consists of more Authoritative sites that focus on providing value to it's users and promotes user engagement. Communities like Pinterest are proving that these models work. Quite frankly, any major Social Networking site could make money with Affiliate Marketing if they implemented a trustworthy system, but it's easier to monitor 3rd party advertisers and make them pay you up front than it is to trust a bunch of guys who could be sneaking their links into your valuable content. Let's face it, affiliates can't be trusted ;) (I kid...kind of)
Mobile Marketing is creating more millionaires these days than most other traffic sources. Whether you're doing Local SEO or Paid Advertising, you can definitely make money with mobile. We're seeing more and more futuristic devices come along every year, which means more and more people are becoming more mobile with their online time, including shopping, gaming, locating services and shops, and more!
SEO is not dead, neither is PPC. I will say that I don't use CPV traffic much these days, but it's not because the traffic is dead; I simply lost that extra time I used to have when running offers on CPV traffic. Mobile traffic is insane right now, and it's a good idea to reach out to your Affiliate Manager and see what they have to offer, including advice. Your affiliate manager can help you become profitable, but you have to ask.
What do you think could be added to this article? Is there any ideas you have about the future of Affiliate Marketing? Please leave a comment and let's have a discussion!