Last week I had the pleasure of sitting down with Lauren Skody and talking to her about her success with affiliate marketing while being a college student. If you don't know Lauren, she is a TikTok famous 23-year-old from Montreal known for making $15k per month while attending university. In this interview-style post, follow along as I ask Lauren questions about how she got to where she is today.
Q: When did you get started with affiliate marketing?
A: “I started looking into it [affiliate marketing] in December of 2020. At the time, I was doing an internship for my major, actuarial math. I realized during that internship that the job was just really not for me. I didn't want to sit at a desk all day! I began looking into different ways to make money online. Obviously, I was on TikTok all the time and one day came across affiliate marketing. I thought it sounded really cool so I looked into it a little deeper and gave it a shot! Within 3 weeks I threw myself out there and started posting content on TikTok.”
Q: How long was it before you made your first dollar?
A: “One week after I started posting! I posted my first TikTok video on January 29th, 2021, and a week after that, almost to the hour, I made my first dollar! It was roughly $1.80.”
Q: What went through your mind after making that first dollar? Did you change your action plan?
A: “At first, I didn't want to overwhelm myself. I planned on posting one TikTok a day, maybe two if I was feeling creative. After I made that first dollar, however, I was motivated to push out more content. I began posting three videos a day for three months. It was crazy but it was so fun.”
Q: Were you an influencer before or were your accounts brand new?
A: “My TikTok account was brand new! I might've had 25 followers which were all people I knew from school or friends.”
Q: How many followers did you have after 90 days?
A: “That would have been right around April 2021. I believe I had around 50,000 followers on TikTok at that point. It was insane!
I learned that you really just have to put as much content as you can out there. Some of it is going to suck! A lot of mine was not great! That being said, one stupid video went viral and got me millions of views and thousands of followers.”
Q: What was the video that went viral?
A: “The first video that took off was based on a dumb trend. I picked out a somber sound that I placed over stock images of what the typical corporate 9 to 5 suburbia life looks like. I put the text ‘I don't wanna live like this’ over the video. At the end, I had a call to action that prompted the viewer to follow if they wanted to avoid that lifestyle as well. The video ended up getting 1.3 million views!
Q: How fast did the video take off?
A: “It got around 70k views on the first day and then the views stopped for about a week. Then, the video just exploded! When you go viral on TikTok, it is really just a vanity metric. At first, there was a jump in my income but it was nothing huge.”
Q: What can you tell people that are just starting out?
A: “In the beginning, you are going to have moments of doubt. It comes and goes in waves. Some mornings you will wake up and not care what anybody thinks about you. You know that you put in the effort to learn about your side hustle and will feel proud of it! Other days you will wake up and question why people trust anything you say. This is the battle of imposter syndrome! You really just have to push past those negative feelings and just keep posting content.”
Q: How long does it take you to create and post 3 videos a day?
A: “Because I’m in school, I batch create on the weekends. On Saturdays I would film 18 or so TikToks. Then, on Sunday, I would edit them so they were ready for the week.
I also suggest brainstorming throughout the week. Trying to come up with ideas the day that you plan on filming is really hard, especially if you don't feel creative that day.”
Q: How has your mindset shifted since you began making money online?
A: “When I think back to December of 2020 — when I first started looking into affiliate marketing — I was so lost. I was spending so much of my effort and time on my degree. I was getting good grades, I had a solid internship, and I was great at what I did. Then I realized that I didn’t really want to be an actuary for the rest of my life!
I had a little freak out moment and began to question what life was going to look like after I finished my degree. Do I take a job that I hate until I have enough money to learn something else? I knew something had to change.
Once I started putting in the work and seeing results with affiliate marketing, I became more motivated to improve my strategies and up my content quality and quantity. I began to love learning about the algorithm and tracking my analytics based on data (after all, I do love math!). It became apparent that I could actually do affiliate marketing for a living! I didn't have to work at a job I didn't like. I refuse to even consider that as an option!
I plan on finishing my degree and keeping it as a backup plan. I’m a very logical thinker and don't like leaving things up to chance. However, I do believe in taking risks and pursuing affiliate marketing is one I’m willing to take!”
Q: How do you prioritize your time?
A: “When starting out, especially if you are making money online as a side hustle, make sure you have everything set up before you start posting content. You're going to save yourself time, you're going to sleep more, and you're going to thank me later. This way, in case you blow up overnight, you won't have to rush to add the link to your bio, make an Instagram post, etc. It will all already be done and ready.
Second, don't wait to post content. You simply have to throw yourself out there and post. If you need, make it part of your daily routine. I found out very quickly that you can't rely on motivation alone to get content posted. It has to be disciplined and habitual.”
I’m so thankful that Lauren took the time to share her experience and I wish her the best of luck with her graduation in May. She's such an inspiration and I can't wait to see where affiliate marketing takes her!
If you would like to keep up with Lauren, you can follow her on Instagram and TikTok at @laurenskody.
As always, thank you so much for reading.
Peace and God bless.
I make new content every single week, so be sure to subscribe to my Youtube and follow my Instagram @brambilabong and TikTok at @AdrianBrambila. I also have tons of resources and courses on my website that you won’t want to miss. Head over to www.adrianbrambila.com to learn more about what I do and how I live a financially free life.