The Internet is full of tips on how to earn millions of dollars on affiliate marketing overnight. Interestingly, most of them try to persuade you that getting rich is possible without even the slightest effort. You probably know all too well how worthless they all are.
Affiliate marketing requires strategic thinking, consistency, uncommon creativity and - guess what? - hard work. While it may sound harsh, it’s not that complicated at all. In fact, as an affiliate, you can generate nice and steady flow of income - even if you don’t have a website of your own. You should definitely find the following 4 tips useful to start right now.
1. Affiliate marketing pros are community leaders
Lots of companies have their own community managers. Some take it even further and create dedicated community teams. There is a reason behind it. Finding places where people talk about certain products and participating in those conversations to spread info about brands and products became necessary. You can take advantage of it! Not only Reddit, with hundreds of business-related subreddits but also e-commerce-oriented forums like Digitalpoint or UK Business Forums, are all perfect to share the good word about your affiliate marketing activity.
Being active in relevant communities can bring you really nice results over time. However, achieving them requires lots of dedication. The roadmap to success is neither short nor easy here. You just can’t post info with your offer randomly and expect results straight away. Instead, focus on building your authority among communities’ members.
Engage in various conversations (not only to those related to products you want to promote), share your knowledge and experience. Be helpful and insightful. That will pay off in the long run.
2. Fall in love with social media
The specificity of social media creates an amazing opportunity for affiliates. Not only it narrows the gap between customers and brands as well as the perception of what promotional content actually is, but it also broadens the range of people you can reach with your offer. How to promote your affiliate links there?
Start from an idea. Try to figure how exactly do you want to approach potential customers via social media. Create a profile on Facebook and start posting right away. Then, expand your activity further by setting a complementary YouTube channel.
Ultimately, providing a quality content is the most important, though. A plethora of content you can write about includes:
- informative product reviews,
- instructional videos (e.g., if your niche is B2B software, you could do tutorials or product comparisons),
- topical discussions, e.g., how can one gather leads or enhance online conversion with LiveChat (for more about it, check this blog post).
Once you start creating and sharing your content, you’ll see the stream of visitors increasing.
If you’re not sure how to take advantage of YouTube capabilities, this video should help you catch on with the basics of earning with affiliate marketing. You don’t even have to stand in front of the camera. Tools like Camtasia empower you to make amazing videos by recording your computer’s screen. You can, of course, enrich it by your own footage. It’s entirely up to you.
3. Affiliate marketing equals creating valuable content
You don’t need a website on your own to publish your content and promote your products as a marketer. Actually, lots of affiliate marketing pros contribute to 3rd party blogs and websites. They write product reviews, market analysis, in-depth ebooks. Once again, not only proper audience targeting but the quality of content you publish is the key to success. You can start by contributing to resource websites like Ezine and reaching out to blogs or websites relevant to what you offer as an affiliate. Lot’s of them needs content on their sites badly so you might even be lucky enough to get paid for your input.
Building your own hub on HubPages is also a great idea. The hub is nothing more than a 1-page mini website, where you can talk about subjects you’re passionate about (e.g., affiliate marketing and products you promote!). As it is hosted on the HubPages website, you don’t even have to know anything about web development or have any coding skills whatsoever to make it look fairly professional.
Other than that, try to become a full-time Quoran!
Quora is a perfect place to share your experience as a professional and benefit from it (e.g., by inputting your affiliate links into your answers). Thousands of questions asked there just await to be answered!
To reach wider audience with your content, focus on building your profile at first and answer as many questions as you can. Once your profile is fairly established (over 30k total views, 50+ unique followers), it’s time to answer questions that are ranked high in Google Search. As always, try to keep the quality of your content high and avoid spamming. Quora moderation team works restlessly to get rid of spammy content and will not hesitate to ban your account indefinitely if they conclude that what you publish does not meet their standards. Note that at Quora, standards are definitely on the higher side.
4. Kick off your email marketing campaign
Running an outbound e-mail marketing campaign is always a good idea. All you have to do is to gather leads of companies that might be interested in product/service you promote and reach out to them with a convincing offer. While it might sound time-consuming, it is not that bad at all.
Conducting an email campaign is directly related to 2 main activities: gathering leads and creating content that recipients of your emails should find tempting. Lead generation has recently become as effortless as it gets. Nobody spends long hours searching for e-mails anymore. That’s what automated tools are for! Here, you can find a list of efficient lead generation tools that come also in free (freemium) versions.
Elucify, my favorite solution, is not listed there, though. But it should be! It enables you to gain 100 leads per week entirely for free and has a number of convenient filtering options. Thanks to them, not only you’d be able to reach a very specific category of companies but even find employees responsible for various activities there. Want to reach executives, customer service guys or marketers?
Go for it!
The strategy you adopt is the whole other story. Let me offer you a couple of protips:
- Don’t try to sell your product straight away. Affiliate marketing professionals focus on explaining what need recipients of their emails might want to meet. They don’t sell solutions before properly introducing problems, explaining reasons behind them and consequences they may bring. That is why, you should not link directly to the product you promote but rather to your profile on Facebook, Quora, or Hubpages where more information about the issue you refer to can be found.
- Adjust your email campaigns both to the specificity of your target audience and the type of communication you want to establish. Like for example, if you expect to reach the group of software marketplaces’ executives, don’t bother creating state-of-the-art, picture-heavy emails. Try to keep it as generic and personalized as possible. All the pictures, colorful themes, and shiny CTAs can easily be used in campaigns targeting different audience.
- Make use of email marketing software. There is a lot of products available in free pricing plans or on the cheap. Including Mailchimp, that we often use at LiveChat. MailChimp’s’ ‘Forever Free’ plan enables you to send 12,000 emails to 2,000 subscribers per month. No expiring trial, contract, or credit card is required to make use of it. For many affiliate marketers, that’s more than enough.
While running affiliate marketing activities without a website is not an easy task, it’s entirely possible to succeed at it. You may not be able to get rich overnight, but with some dedication and strategic approach, you’ll find ways to earn consistently. What you have to remember, though, is not to rush things. Instead of posting your promotional content directly, focus on gaining recipients’ interest.
Note of the existence of given problem, provide an in-depth explanation of it and suggest ways to solve it. All the presale content you create should ultimately lead to your offer but none should look like a direct promotion. The more genuine and insightful content you create, the better results you’ll achieve.