Working from home as an adult affiliate is a rewarding and often very lucrative experience, and many thousands are doing just that right now. But although many of them are making a very comfortable income from the work that they do, many are also falling into traps and making mistakes that affect their lives.
They might be making a shed load of money, but they are also becoming a slave to their computer, or missing out on life outside of their home, or just making little errors that could risk everything should they experience a minor problem.
I have put together a little list of ten things that I think everyone should think about while forging their career as their own boss. Some of these things are more practical and things you might have already considered, but others might be a little more surprising.
Back Up Everything
Working from home as an affiliate provides a lot of benefits, but never forget that you have responsibilities too. In fact, your responsibilities could be greater than if you were working for someone else.
This is your baby, you are responsible for yourself, you are the one who has to make sure that every aspect of your business is secure and functional. Just like every other business, you need to make sure you have a back up of all your vital data.
I keep a flash drive with me at all times, containing vital information such as site passwords and business associate information. If I lost my home and my computer today, I could buy a laptop and continue my business with that one flash drive.
I also back up my entire system on an external hard drive (which I share amongst other computers in the home) at the end of each working day.
Further to having contingency plans in relation to data, you should have a back up in hardware too. I have more than one system to use, but when I only had my one Mac that I sat in front of every day, I also had a back up mouse and keyboard.
I also have a USB internet dongle from a separate ISP to use in case my phone line goes down. It might be true that you could simply go out and buy anything new that you might need when something breaks or fails, but it is far better to have it in place ready to be used when you need it – especially when it comes to internet access.
Remember Why You Wanted This
If you are prone to becoming a workaholic in any respect, it is important to remind yourself occasionally of why you wanted this life to start with. You work for yourself, and you have given yourself a flexible lifestyle to work within.
Work to live, do not live to work. If a friend calls you up for coffee, you can just get up and leave. If you want to go out for the day with family or friends, you can plan the day before and get enough work done for the following day if you really want to.
It is important to keep a balance, but always keep in mind that working from home can become a lonely existence if you don’t learn to break away from your desk.
Control Your Ambition
When you start out, it is probably wise to have several sites in different areas or niches, because you are still learning what might be the correct path to take – the most lucrative. I did this, and I stick by my decision today.
I started several different blogs in different niches and worked hard at all of them equally, until I could sit back six months later and see which were performing well and which were not. Any that were not making double the investment were abandoned so that I could focus on those that were more profitable.
But, there is a real risk that you might have another idea, buy a domain, put a blog up and then find six months later that you have not even touched it.
Domains and adult hosting are so cheap these days that you can soon find yourself with a mountain of sites that you cannot possibly manage. It is great to have ambition, but it is important to stick with what you know is working.
Manage Your Space
It is easy when you are working from home as an affiliate to make your desk a cocoon, where you work, eat, drink, smoke… this is very bad.
If you smoke, set breaks and leave your desk. Set a lunch break and do not eat in front of your computer. Do not have a coffee machine right there in the room with you.
All of these things build up to make your computer your master, and you probably started this to get away from that sense of imprisonment.
There are no excuses, you should be going outside at least once a day, at the bare minimum. It does not matter whether that is a walk around the block, or to collect the kids from school, or to see a friend, even just to buy a paper.
Find an excuse to go outside, otherwise you risk becoming a recluse. This cannot be stressed enough, seclusion is a real danger for those who work from home.
You might think you are working for yourself in a little bubble, but there are thousands of other people out there doing the same. There might be elements of competition in certain areas, but there are so many opportunities to branch out and team up with others.
There are basic partnerships like link exchanges and promotional opportunities, but there are more interesting partnerships to have too. Check out some of the forums (make sure you visit my adult affiliate forum) and social groups there are out there and consider being involved.
You do not know what you might find if you try it. The adult industry has several events all over the world where sponsors, studios, stars, affiliates and others in the business all get together, they are not just business events, they are social too.
You should look into these and really think about how they might benefit you both professionally and personally.
Not Everyone Will Get It
It is surprising, but many people cannot get their head around what it is that an affiliate does, or the responsibility we have for ourselves. I have had conversations with friends who I would consider to be relatively well-versed in all things internet, but they still do not understand how I earn a living.
These people often seem to think that you have no responsibilities at all, that you can just drop everything and leave for a weekend. Obviously, depending on whether you are full-time or using the affiliate business to supply an extra income, this is not necessarily true.
I might not need to ask an employer for a week off, but I still would not be able to just leave for a holiday when a friend calls. It is important to remember that these people mean well, they just do not get it.
It is easy to get into an argument when someone belittles your career or thinks that you do not have one because you are not working for someone else like they are. Just try to impress upon them the facts, they will eventually get used to the idea that you do still have responsibilities.
Not Everyone Will Get It – The Sequel
You know that friend who has been to sex toy parties, or the one who has been open with you about renting adult movies with a boyfriend before? Yeah, they will not necessarily be more open minded than your Christian aunt Mary about you working in the adult business.
Believe it or not, some of the most liberal and free-thinking people I know have blushed and become almost Victorian in their attitudes when I have mentioned what it is that I do for a living.
Some of them just can not take it seriously, and despite the fact that you are living a more comfortable life than them working just five hours a day, they do not think what you do for work is a real business.
Don Not Get Greedy
If you are successful, it can be very addictive to see that money coming in, and some people become greedy. Do you really need to be earning $3k a month?
Are you neglecting your life to make that? Is it worth earning that money if you have no time at all to enjoy it with friends and family?
Are you letting other aspects of your life fall behind because you want to get that final post done on several blogs thinking it will definitely make you another $100?
Yes, it is great to have financial security, but there comes a time when the quest for more money can seriously harm your life and the entire purpose of why you wanted to work from home to begin with.