How established is your site/blog/social media following? Do you already have an audience of 1 million or are you just getting started? Early on in your affiliate marketing journey you will probably want to have multiple options to make sure you can cover a broad field. You might want to become an Amazon Associate as well as joining one of the networks so you will have a product link to drop into any posts you do. An easy place to start is to promote the services you are using if you are enjoying their product - web hosting or email management systems like Aweber.
I once persuaded my mum to buy all my Christmas presents using my affiliate links on Amazon, and then found out that Amazon won’t pay out to anyone with the same surname as you (as they assume them to be family; luckily I have an unusual surname!) or anyone who lives at the same address. However one of my friends has ordered through one of my affiliate links and the commission has tracked for that. It’s my ONLY commission, mind. And my account hasn’t been shut down yet (touch wood, fingers crossed etc etc…)
Survey takers who work as Online Affiliate Marketing Managers report a focused set of job skills. Most notably, skills in Strategic Marketing, Account Management, Online Marketing, and Sales are correlated to pay that is above average. Skills that pay less than market rate include Sales. Online Marketing is a skill commonly found among those who know Account Management.
You can start figuring out your target audience by focusing on reading the reviews in your niche. You can also spend some time on forums and read the comment section on blogs that cover your niche topics. If you notice some unanswered questions emerging over and over again, write them down. Your audience needs them answered, and you can do it for them.
The top Influencers may balk at this payment model since they are used to pay-per-post. But again, it’s much more likely that micro-influencers will be open to this model. And to sweeten the pot, you should offer an initial “signing bonus” of free products for them to have, and also a higher commission rate unique for these affiliate Influencers. If your usual commission rate is 10–20% for the average influencer, consider going as high as 50%. Even if the ROI isn’t quite 11X, but say 5X, it’s still well worth the commission costs.
Promoting and marketing to people is easiest when you’re promoting products or services that you can get excited about. Find an affiliate program within a market you’re most interested in or passionate about, sign up, pick products you’re familiar with (whether by personal experience or lots of knowledge gained by reading reviews by others within the community), and go to town! It’s easy to get others excited about the product because you’re excited about it too, and when you have that much passion about something, it draws people in. Don’t be afraid to tell them how you feel about the product; they are there to get as much information as possible so they can make an informed decision. Tell them what you like about it. If you’ve been using it for a while, tell them why you’ll continue to purchase it. The key here, and with any successful marketing strategy, is to tell them about the product, not telling them to buy it. Be honest, give them as much information as possible, and let them make the decision on their own. After that, you can watch the commission you’ve earned fly in.
I’ve had an experience with Clickbank some years ago where I earned money from a small number of recurring commissions over time with an affiliate promotion. If I remember correctly Clickbank wouldn’t let me withdraw funds because they were below their minimum payout level, and they kept charging me for keeping hold of my balance; therefore I ended up never accumulating enough money and losing the lot to the tune of over $200. I was furious and have steered clear of Clickbank ever since.
Affiliate marketing has now invaded Hollywood? We know it invaded US politics in Washington as some politicians (current and retired) are silent affiliate marketers or in MLM. Maybe we can look forward to hearing in the next few years about more celebrities going from actors and actresses to home-based affiliate marketers. Wouldn’t that be something?