Critical Newbie Mistakes

This is an overview of critical newbie mistakes of first-time online business owners and new affiliate marketers.


That’s what I sometimes feel when I witness newbies making these mistakes…

I’m often working with aspiring, beginner affiliate marketers.

And that’s awesome! :)

Most of the time I enjoy working with self-driven, highly motivated, and goal-oriented clients.

But it’s often also disappointing and frustrating to see the same mistakes being made over and over and over again.

This short list gives you a good idea why most people struggle with their online business.

Let’s dive in.

The Reason ‘Why’

I created this list for two reasons:

  1. After finishing reading this short article, you are aware of challenges, and you can mentally prepare yourself for it. You know what you can expect.
  2. I want to give you hope as it is possible, you can overcome these obstacles as many successful entrepreneurs before you did

In short:

This is hard. But it can be done.

It’s good that it’s hard because it keeps 95% of people out, which means the rewards are bigger for the rest of us.

You’ll be proud of your work.

Mistake No 1: Not Working Consistently Enough While Seeing No Results (Yet)

  • especially when starting out, there’s a lot of work that needs to be done
  • it takes consistent, daily action to get off the ground (aka the grind)
  • if it was easy, everyone would be doing it, everyone would be rich
  • the valley of disappointment, the tough times actually are the reason why not everyone is able to do it. It’s supposed to be that way! 🙂
  • it’s tough to stay motivated over longer periods of time, especially when you have not great results to show for (yet). Do you have the resilience and patience?
  • it takes some time and effort to start building and seeing momentum
  • it comes back to “what do you want” and “do you really want this bad enough?”
  • do you have a compelling reason ‘why’ you’re following through?

Mistake No 2: Spreading Your Attention, Not Staying Focused On One Thing

  • there’s a million different, working business models
  • choose one. Stick to it
  • it’s actually not too important which one you choose, as this process is less about immediate results but more about the person you become in the process
  • you’ll learn valuable skills
  • you’ll become a practitioner of your craft and a ruthless executor in the process
  • you’ll learn that marketing actually is your business, no matter what you do, no matter what’s the deliverable
  • jump from one opportunity to the next, again and again, and in 5 years from now you’ll be in the same spot, starting all over again at 0. Probably with less energy and motivation, if you haven’t given up on the way… This shiny object syndrom kept me personally stuck for years - don’t make the same mistake!
  • choose something that you like. One process, one proven system, one mentor that you connect with and then stick to that chosen one thing until you succeed

Mistake No 3: Worrying About Things That Might Come Up 3 Years From Now

  • don’t worry about minor, less important, less urgent things
  • do the important stuff first: Marketing and sales, focus on income producing activities
  • without sales you have no business, cash-flow is the lifeblood of businesses
  • don’t screw your customers, always make sure to help your clients, value first
  • with affiliate marketing (done the right way)], you don’t have to worry about negative cash-flow, product creation, or market validation. You can solely focus on the highest value activity: The marketing of it.

Mistake No 4: Waiting For Permission

  • nobody will come and rescue you
  • you need no endorsement
  • stop waiting, start now
  • you don’t need permission from anyone but yourself
  • I can give you all the information and tools that you need to start and grow a successful online business, and I’m here to help when you get stuck. But I’m not here to motivate you, and you’ve got to do the work.
  • You have to be willing to do the work.
  • Don’t wait for permission. It’s an illusion anyway. There’s no gatekeeper anymore, you can start today.

Mistake No 5: Fear Of Failure

  • You will make mistakes. Just as I did. Who cares?
  • What do you have to lose?
  • You either become successful or you figure out this is not for you - either way, you win!
  • You will gain valuable insights and learn more about yourself, no matter your future path
  • You will learn valuable marketing skills, no matter what
  • Don’t worry about the opinion of somebody else, especially if you wouldn’t ask that person for advice! Social anxiety was a major obstacle for me. It’s an illusion.
  • “Yes, I want to start soon (wantrepreneur), I just need some more information!” That’s BS. That’s simply your fears speaking. It’s not real. Get over it.
  • Work with what you have now. You don’t need to invest into a $99 per month page builder to make money online
  • You don’t need more information. You have it all at your fingertips.

Get this, implement it, get results.

It’s that simple.

More Critical Newbie Mistakes

Lots of things can and most likely wll go wrong when starting out a new endeavor like online affiliate marketing.

And that’s totally fine and part of the learning process, of course.

But some deadly mistakes can cost you years.

Years of travelling the wrong road, of losing valuable time, years of confusion.

I’d like to say “been there, done that” and just move on.

But it’s not that easy when you’ve lost precious years of your life.

I didn’t know better back then.

But I know better today.

And you can learn from my mistakes.

Let’s dive in.

SOS: Shiny Object Syndrom

The grass must be greener on the other side.

This one phrase nicely sums up the thinking pattern and mindset of a person infected by shiny object syndrom.

If you’ve decided to jump into affiliate marketing, the money clearly must be in Amazon FBA.

Or dropshipping.

Or “consulting”.

Or building a social media marketing agency.

Or whatever the latest fad currently is.

Of course, if you’re trying to make dropshipping work for you, it’s the other way around.

The “easy money” must be in affiliate marketing, right?


Every one of these mentioned business models work.

It’s not about the business model.

It’s about making it work.

Making it work for you.

Ask Yourself What You Really Want - Besides The Money

Imagine yourself having rached all your financial goals and then some.

What makes you get up in the morning?

What gets you excited?

What do you want to be known for?

How can you help many people in the best possible way?

How can you have an impact?

How can you make a difference in the market place?

And more importantly: In the lives of people?

In my book, these are much better questions to ask than where currently the most money can be made, in the most “easy” and fastest possible way.

Which brings me to the second mistake:

Instant Results Expectation

Understand that, no matter the (online) business model you choose, you’re going to have to learn new skills.

Every business generates revenue by sales.

Sales is the process of

  • attracting a potential customer and
  • offering him/her a suitable solution to a specific problem

I published an article focused on high income-producing activities the other day, go check it out.

These are important skills to learn and master.

And you don’t get around it.

If you think you don’t have to learn traffic generation techniques because you are utilizing a third party platform like amazon, think again.

Eventually, you will want to build your own platform.

Create your own castle.

Play only by your own rules.

If you’re building your income streams relying 100% on a third party platform, you’re extremely vulnerable.

But I digress.

There is no quick fix, no shortcut, no secret, no trick or gimmick to avoid learning the necessary skills to succeed at marketing online.

And it will take some time and effort.

There’s no way arround it.

Actually, that’s a very good thing.

Forget about making the big buck next week and instead invest your time and energy wisely into acquiring those skills.

And then, become a master.

Can I Shorten The Learning Curve?


You could skip content marketing and directly jump into paid traffic, for example.

But don’t make the mistake of thinking that paid traffic and media buying requires no skills.

You still have to learn many things, including:

  • how to identify your target market
  • how to reach them
  • how to make the right people click
  • how to build effective landing pages
  • how to come up with and create highly relevant lead magnets
  • how to follow up with your leads
  • how to be truly helpful, how to provide tons of value upfront
  • how to build a trusting relationship
  • how to create irresistible offers
  • how to present your offers (message to market match)
  • how to test and optimize

and a few more.

Can I Shorten The Learning Curve By Making Use Of “Done-For-You” Funnels and “Business In A Box” Solutions?

Yes and no.

Generatlly speaking, these DFY funnels can work.

But ultimately, you want to stand on your own feet.

Plus, many high ticket offers are short-lived and trick you by relying on your mental weaknesses.

You’re not building your own business here.

There’s a much better alternative:

==> Build a real business. Here’s How.

But Isn’t That The Case For All Affiliate Products And Services?


There’s a huge difference between building your own brand and blindly driving traffic to an offer.

You want to attract your own audience with poeple who trust you.

And then you want to make recommendations for excellent solutions to your audience’s problems.

You’re independent as a true affiliate marketer.

You’re creating your own world.

Later - and only if you want to - you can create your own products.

When you see a good fit, find and recommend an awesome product/service/community.

If you think it truly helps your audience with their problems, it’s a no-brainer.

But sending paid traffic directly to a charlatan offer (without building your own, long-term, trustworthy brand) is plain wrong.

But now I have a question for you:

Can You See How Your Questions Represent A Part Of You That’s Trying To Avoid The Real Work?

It’s time to look into the mirror and ask the right questions:

What do you want to be known for when you’re old or already dead?

How can you really help many people who you truly care about in the best possible way?

Where and how can you make the biggest impact possible?

What excites you getting up in the morning?

When you’ve figured out what you really want and why, it’s time to implement.

But we still struggle with our goals.


Because of the third newbie mistake:

Not Taking 100% Responsibility

The first two mistakes are a result of not living the success mindset.

You’re permanently distracting yourself from the necessary work.

You’re looking for a shortcut, a way to avoid the work.

But we must become comfortable doing the uncomfortable.


Don’t get me wrong, I’m far from perfect or having this mastered myself.

To this day I’m struggling with distractions, not doing all the time what I know is the right thing to do.

But I’m getting better at it.

Every day, I’m trying to get better than yesterday.

Be Better. Today!

Today, I’m much better and faster at getting back on the horse.

So forget yesterday.

Forget that you messed it up and move on.

You’ve got work to do.

You know better.

You know what’s the right thing to do.


Every. Single. Day.

Get your life back, take back the control.

Own it.

Take 100% responsibility.

Closing Thoughts

I hope you find this article helpful!

Thank you for reading and stay awesome,

Tim for Online Business Dude

PS: Start Your Own Online Business And Become A Super Affiliate!

==> Download The Free Online Business Blueprnt (PDF)