I have been involved in the online world for years now. I got my start on Neopets, and then eventually moved to a hosted sub domain on someone elses site. From there, I bought my own domain and hosting. This scenario may be all too familiar to other teens out there. People not directly involved with our types of graphic sites don’t understand. But I remember the days of Divergente, and when Outspoken Kate was really up and happening. Swimchick was the place to be, us part of the ‘in’ crowd were friends with each other, providing support as we learned the ways of the web. We blogged about our lives and shared our own unique experiences.

I remember those days fondly, and even now I contemplate getting back into it. It seems as if that scene has come and left, although I’ll never know for sure. Enough reminiscing, I’m here to talk about ‘affies’. Affies is a term us kids used to refer to our online friends or link exchanges. Its just a cute word that stood for affiliates. At the time, my definition of the word affiliate was just so – a person’s site who I linked to and linked me back. A link exchange.

As I grew up and transitioned into the real online world, older people were using the term affiliates in a much different way. To them, ‘affiliate‘ was a company who’s prodcuts they marketed on their websites. That’s a whole different ball game! Link exchanges and selling products for profit. Actually, affiliate marketing is a great way to make money online, and teens and adults alike can benefit.

To give you a better explanation, here’s a definition from Wikipedia.

Affiliate marketing is a marketing practice in which a business rewards one or more affiliates for each visitor or customer brought about by the affiliate’s own marketing efforts. Examples include rewards sites, where users are rewarded with cash or gifts, for the completion of an offer, and the referral of others to the site. The industry has four core players: the merchant (also known as ‘retailer’ or ‘brand’), the network, the publisher (also known as ‘the affiliate’), and the customer. The market has grown in complexity to warrant a secondary tier of players, including affiliate management agencies, super-affiliates and specialized third party vendors.

I’m going to show all of you how to get into affiliate marketing to make extra money online! Hey, you might even be doing it without knowing 😛

So, if you use the term ‘affie’ or ‘affiliate’ on your site, will you change it after knowing the real definition?