Starting a successful affiliate marketing business is tough – even more so for beginners. To reach the level of success that lets you put your legs up and watch the money flow in, you must work super-hard and smart.
Fortunately, there are programs designed to train you to fast-track you to the top. Wealthy Affiliate and Income School Project 24 are two of the most popular ones. They help you wade through the murky waters of digital marketing if you are a complete newbie and give you helpful pointers if you already have some level of experience.
In this article, we will discuss and compare them to help you make your choice as to which one would suit you more.
We will start with summaries of what they offer and then go through a raft of features and examine how they fare with each.
What is Wealthy Affiliate?
Wealthy Affiliate (abbreviated to WA) is a bit like a school that offers online marketing training – in fact, they also go by the name Wealthy Affiliate University. It was started by Kyle and Carson in 2005 to help affiliate marketers and other online entrepreneurs build successful online businesses from scratch.They coach you on how to convert your ideas into income by building high-traffic, profitable websites. They also grant you access to a vibrant community of marketers where you can engage with fellow marketers to share personal stories and learn from each other’s experiences.
The main course is known as the Online Entrepreneur Certification (OEC). It is divided into five phases:
1. Getting started
2. Building your own traffic producing website
3. Making money!
4. Mastering social engagement
5. Achieving maximum success through content creation
Each phase has 10 lessons covering individual elements of digital marketing. In addition to the training program they also offer the following services (some are only available for premium users):
· Affiliate program which allows you to make money by marketing WA’s programs and services.
· Weekly live video classes
· A Personal Affiliate blog
· Hosting services along with support, feedback, analysis, and comment platforms.
· Access to a Keyword Research tool
There are two levels of membership – Starter and Premium. The Starter plan is free to allow you to familiarize yourself with how the program works by letting you access a portion of the services. By paying for Premium membership, you receive the full range of services WA offers.
What is Income School Project 24?
Income school project 24 is also an online affiliate marketing training platform. It was established by Jim and Rick to teach members how to set up successful online businesses. The program pledges to help clients create a revenue-generating business in 24 months hence the name “Project 24”.Jim and Rick are known for their hands-on, lay-it-all-out-there approach that many people appreciate and resonate with (particularly with their YouTube videos). The two founders like sharing their own experiences to augment their training modules.
Their main program features a 60-step process. It is designed to help you to set up your niche site from scratch while avoiding the mistakes that commonly hamstring many people’s internet marketing efforts. It is divided into four phases:
1. Phase 1 covering the first three months
2. Phase 2 covering 4-6 months
3. Phase 3 covering 7-20 months
4. Phase 4 is the launch covering the final 4 months.
They constantly update it to keep up with new trends and remove anything that becomes obsolete.
Other perks to joining Project 24 include:
· Access to additional courses on creating great content and marketing your website. Through these courses, they tackle everything from how to write a blog post to keyword research. Jim and Rick constantly add new courses and update the existing ones.
· A podcast discussing new opportunities and digital marketing tactics.
· Access to a vibrant community through which members share experiences with fellow marketers.
· Access to niche site ideas if you are stuck.
To join, you have to pay the full first-year membership fee. You will still pay for subsequent annual subscriptions but the rates go lower. The justification for charging students from the moment they join is that it helps them commit and take their training seriously.
Wealthy Affiliate vs Income School Project 24
When it comes to choosing between the two programs, there are a couple of things you need to examine. Here are some useful considerations:
Access to Free material and services
Wealthy Affiliate allows you to create an account free of charge. A free account bars you from making the most out of the program but it lets you receive part of the training and a couple of services. If you are undecided as to whether you should join their paid program, experimenting with the free service will help you become more decisive.
Income School, on the other hand, only lets you create a paid account from the onset. The downside to that approach is that it doesn’t let you test whether their services suit your needs. With regards to free training material, theirs come in the form of their popular YouTube channel and blog. It is their way of giving you a taste of what the full membership offers. You can glean a lot of useful insights just from the videos without ever paying for the program.
Scope of servicesWealthy affiliate offers an integrated package that comes with hosting services, two websites (50 websites for premium users) with analytics and feedback tools, and a personal affiliate blog. This means that you do not have to pay for those services separately. The fact that everything is under one roof provides for great user experience especially when you are new to digital marketing.
Project 24, on the other hand, only point you to the vendors that provide those services. For example, they direct their clients to Bluehost for hosting services.
Access to foundersBoth programs have channels you can use to reach out to the founders directly. Online communities, events, and bookings are some of the ways you can achieve that.
However, at Wealthy Affiliate, only premium members can request to reach out to the founders personally. Free account users cannot do that.
Affiliate ProgramWealthy Affiliate has their affiliate program where you bring in other users and earn a commission. It is a referral-based system. They even have a training program called “Affiliate Bootcamp” containing 7 courses with a total of 70 lessons. It is geared towards teaching you how to create a niche site with the sole purpose of marketing their services.
Both free and premium accounts can become WA affiliates (but premium users receive higher commissions). If you sell 299 or more subscriptions between January and December, you get invited to the Wealthy Affiliate Super Affiliate Conference where you receive VIP treatment and network with the founders and other successful affiliates.
Income School doesn’t have an affiliate program (as at the time of writing this).
Community – Both Income School Project 24 and Wealthy Affiliate have vibrant online communities where you can talk to other affiliate marketers and the founders. However, Wealthy Affiliate has a larger community.
They each have reliable customer support services.
Pros and Cons
Here we shall not focus on the overall advantages and disadvantages that they share like good customer service and vibrant online communities. Instead, we shall go through distinct merits and demerits that help with our comparison of both services.
Income School Project 24
Merits· Owner portfolio: When you join Income school, Jim and Rick let you look over their shoulder and check out their niche sites. Their flip some of the sites if you are interested in buying a website that is already established; however, it is expensive.
· Active YouTube presence: As already mentioned, Income School runs a successful YouTube channel where they share a ton of affiliate marketing tips for free. The videos are informative to affiliates of all skill levels.
· They recommend hosting and domain name services but let you choose the one you prefer. You are afforded the freedom to pick the vendors you want. They can be cheaper than Wealthy Affiliate’s services.
· The 24-month pledge presents you with a challenge. It gives you the motivation to work even harder.
Disadvantages· They do not have a keyword research tool, domain name services, hosting services, and a personal blog section.
· They do not provide entry-level free access to their services
Wealthy Affiliate University
Merits· Affiliate Program: Enables you to make money as you learn and, if successful enough, network with successful marketers.
· Integrated services: By providing an array of services to their students from their platform, they provide good user experience especially for beginners.
· They provide new users with a free trial period
· They provide a keyword research tool
Disadvantages· They restrict members to their services thus disregarding their personal preferences.
Although they have similarities and differences, both programs are not scams; they are not get-rich-quick schemes promising you quick money. Instead, they both recognize that you have to put in a great deal of effort and that all you need is guidance.
They both offer detailed instructions on how to build successful niche websites. You do not need prior technical knowledge or affiliate marketing experience to join them because they are tailored to meet the needs of beginners.
They are relatively pricey but offer good ROI. Join the training program that caters to your needs to get your affiliate marketing business off the ground the right way.