Affiliate marketing has been around since human beings started trading. It is simply selling someone else’s products or goods for a share of the profit. The affiliate marketer does this by promoting the goods or services to other people.
This article will explain and expand on what is affiliate marketing about with reference to the modern online method which is generally what everyone is talking about now. We will look at how this system works and how to be a successful affiliate marketer.
What is Affiliate Marketing about – The Definition
Although a simple definition of affiliate marketing is selling other people’s products for a share of the profit or the income a more precise and in depth explanation is useful. Usually there are three parties involved in this type of marketing:
- The seller or producer of the product who wants to sell more of his/her product or service than they can do on their own.
- The marketer who promotes the product or service by various means available to them.
- The customer who buys the product or service from the creator through the promotion of the marketer.
Some people consider that there is a 4th party involved which is the online network that brings the seller and the promoter together. This network or platform will collect the payment from the customer and split this income between the seller and the promoter according to the agreed terms. It will usually keep a percentage to cover the costs of operating the platform.
What is Affiliate Marketing about – Does it Work
Does it work? That’s a good question. The straightforward answer is YES. I think what most people who ask this question really want to know is how well does it work.
The main reason and in many cases probably the only reason to become involved in this type of marketing is to make money. In order to do that you need to be able to present the promotion for the product or service you have decided to sell to as many people as possible. Whatever way you use to obtain these “hungry customers” you need to gain their trust before they will buy through you as opposed to anyone else.
There is a dilemma here – you have to balance the desire to make money with the process of creating trust. If you just try to sell, sell, sell most people will run a mile. “This joker is just trying to sell me rubbish.” You need to spend time giving your potential customers quality advice and free content so they can see you are knowledgeable about the product or service and they can rely on your information.
A great many people are successful with affiliate marketing and a significant number make a great deal of money out of it. They all have a few qualities in common such as:
- able to allocate time to generate content.
- work consistently day after day.
- be persistent when thing are not going well.
- understand that your first sale will not happen immediately and may take a few months.
This is not a get-rich-quick system but if you stick at it, you can make significant income.
How to get started
On the assumption that you have no knowledge or experience of affiliate marketing and you don’t yet have a website this is what I would do.
- Find a niche that you have an interest in and that has plenty of customers for the products within that niche – “a hungry crowd.” Niches such as Beauty, Health, Fitness, Weight Loss, Pets, Internet Marketing and many more.
- Join an affiliate platform such as Clickbank or JVZoo (both free) and find a product from the niche that you have chosen. I would start with Clickbank unless you have chosen Internet Marketing as your niche in which case I would go with JVZoo. Look for good quality products that have high quality sales material that you can use in your promotions. You would be well advised to buy the product if possible and use it. This will give you experience and knowledge on which to base your promotion.
- Promote your chosen product – this sound easy but it is the most difficult part of the process. Getting sufficient traffic to view your sales material requires consistent and persistent work and investment of time. I would start by setting up a Facebook page which provides good quality content where you post daily. Do not bombard your visitors with constant links to sales material. You need to build a reputation for providing good, interesting and quality content on your niche subject and every few days include a link to your affiliate product.
- Set up some Facebook ads to attract visitors to your Facebook page to begin to boost numbers. You will then want to move on to perhaps starting a Blog or Website to attract Traffic.
The way ahead
Once you have started the process successfully you may want to move on to more sophisticated methods of working. There are many other platforms that you can join to find the product that interests you and fits your niche. Research them on google to find what is available. There are a number of websites that give information on pros and cons of each one.
The next stage is to construct a website or blog that is search engine optimised (SEO) and regularly post quality content and information on it. This website can then be promoted through social media and any other means you can think of. For further help go my review of The Wealthy Affiliate program.
When you have one product successfully promoted and providing you with income you will want to promote another one, probably in the same niche.
The ultimate goal however is to develop an email list to which you can promote any new product. The benefit of an email list is that they already know you and may have bought from you. They therefore trust you. You can develop a list using a landing page on your website. The details of how to do this will be the subject of a future article.
I hope I have explained what is affiliate marketing about and given you some starting points on how to begin with some ideas for the future. If you would like to, please leave a comment or a question below. I answer all questions personally and I’d love to hear from you.
The best of luck on your journey.