Never Too Young to Start


The affiliate marketing industry has a number of parent/child teams working together, such as Greg Rice and Greg Rice Jr.; Andy Rodriguez and Andy Rodriguez Jr.; and Deborah Carney and Liz Fogg-Ababon. In recent years I have become more involved in working with my father, Bill Swartwout, in what is now our company.

Bill started planting the seed for my love of working in the Internet industry when I was a young teen, when he first got on the Web. I’m currently working on instilling a passion for technology with my three-year-old daughter, who has known how to find the browser on my iPhone so that she could see the sports page icon, since she was just 18 months old.

Now, at just three, she manipulates her two pages of apps on my iPhone like a pro. It just goes to show, it’s never too young to start teaching your child how to use technology, or to get them interested in our industry, for that matter.

In addition to affiliate marketing, my other job has been an elementary school teacher. It has been my experience that not every student is fond of working on a computer. As I have surveyed my student’s families to find out what kind of technology they have available in their homes, the students with no interest in computers often do not have access to them at home.

Kids need to have a foundation in computers, as proficiency has become essential in education and the workplace. . Today’s children will not have much choice but to learn to use computers as we are engulfed in a computer-centric society. As a teacher, I do whatever I can to introduce the use of computers into my students lives through daily lessons, kick-starting their computer literacy skills – and they love it!

As a mother, I am sure to include my daughter in learning to work whatever piece of technology I happen to be using whenever she is nearby.

That said, I’m going to go out on a limb and say that it is never too early to encourage an interest in affiliate marketing. My three-year-old certainly doesn’t know how to do what I do as President and Affiliate Manager. But she does know that “Mommy works on the computer a lot,” Mommy works with these things called “checks that have cool pictures” on them, “Mommy types a lot,” and that Mommy has fun with her work. She even loves to wear Mommy’s company hats and ID badges from past Affiliate Summits saying that she’s going to work with Mommy one day.

Jill, affiliate manager of, is president of the “parent” Beaches and Towns Network, Inc.

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