Get Started with Affiliate Marketing – 7 steps to success
If you have landed on this page as a result of searching “get started with affiliate marketing today” then you have just learned one of the lessons about affiliate marketing, which I discuss further down this post. Before I begin just know that some of the links on this post and site are affiliate products for which I get paid a small amount.
That’s the beauty of affiliate marketing, you can be paid for referring someone to someone else’s product for a commission. I think it is fantastic, no inventory, no shipping issues, no production or design costs, just learn to do two things and you could scale to 7+ figures a month. I know that’s a long way away from right now for you but read on to learn the principles
Okay, so I have probably gone a little ahead of myself there. Today I am going to discuss in detail the 7 steps required to deliver success for any affiliate business. Here they are:
Deciding you’re why
All successful people have a reason for doing what they do to achieve the success they desire. It’s critical that your why is strong, and driven to propel you through the tough times. The truth is Affiliate marketing is challenging, for most people their why gives out before they reach the gold. Your why needs to be greater than your give-up, this is not working for me.
I have been in this business since 2007 and I have given up, when it became beyond my ability to continue. Each time I have come back because my why took a hit, but was able to bounce back, learn from where I had been, and strengthen my resolve to achieve my why. I cannot tread your path I can only share where I have been. If that resonates with you then I hope that my path can help lighten your path, where ever that may take you.
The thing with affiliate marketing is you need to do things you have probably never done before, especially if you are brand new, and even when you try what is needed, it’s not to the standard required to generate good results. It’s like when you first had to walk, you looked around and saw other people walking and you had the idea to walk to but your body would only let you roll over and pop your head up, you persisted and were able to start crawling, then you stood up next to the couch, then you walked then ran. Why did you do this, because you thought it was a good thing to do.
Look around and emulate what others are doing, yes you will fall over, but that is part of the journey of learning how you work and what works for you. You will find some people will fly ahead of you and some will fall behind and some will be in the same lane as you. Don’t judge your success or lack of success based on other people’s results. You are not them and they are not you, keep driving toward your target and while you do that you will achieve your goal. Just maintain focus on your why.
Choose your niche.
Before we dive deep into choosing a Niche let’s look at what the term actually means. As a noun it can be used in the context of someone’s profession or vocation, such as Michael has partnered with Clickbank marketing health products, and feels he has found his niche.
Another context for the word Niche is like a portion of pie where the pie represents a broad market like golf, fishing, or weight loss, and the niche represents, left-handed golfers, lake fisher or females interested in Veganism.
Why choose a niche
So why do we need to choose a niche? This question has many layers, but fundamentally the reason you choose a niche is that it is very expensive to acquire customers in a broad niche as opposed to a focused niche. This is because a broad niche has thousands of variables to work through to find the buying keywords that convert for that demographic. In a tightly focused niche, it is easier to learn the wants, needs and pain points of your ideal customers to establish their buying patterns.
The wants, needs and pain points of your ideal customer are much easier defined when you have a good understanding of these things. For example with lake fishers, we know they will either be shore-based or boat based, we could then start to sector the niche for one or the other, to identify the wants or needs of these types of fishers.
We could then look at our own expertise and say you have more experience as a shore-based fisher than a boat-based fisher. Now you could start to define an avatar for shore-based fishers, then drill down into lure fishing or bait fishing. With your experience, you could then say that people who fish for trout from the shore will have this range of needs and pain points. Locate a solution to a pain point and put that in front of your audience to learn the buying patterns of your niche to work out if it will be profitable.
Find profitable affiliate programs to join.
To be an affiliate you need to find products or services that fit your chosen niche, are profitable, align with your values plus the values of the niche, and make a positive impact on the people who use the product or service you will recommend. This means finding affiliate products that meet those values.
In this section, we are going to discuss 7 mistakes most new affiliate marketers make, and yes I have made these, then we will look at 4 ways for you to choose the right affiliate program.
7 mistakes most new affiliate marketers make
4 ways for you to choose the right affiliate program
Create great content.
Creating content is the biggest bang for buck/time thing you can do to create a long-term Return On Investment (ROI). Why because correctly done content will provide traffic to your site potentially for years if done correctly. If not done right is a waste of time. Here are the basics of targeted content creation:
Drive traffic to your affiliate site.
To drive traffic to your content you need a vehicle to house your content. Now you will see people using social media to put their content and link to an affiliate product directly and this does work, but it has limits and risks. The risk is you can be shut down by the social media networks very quickly, sometimes through no fault of your own. The reason I say social sites have limits is that you can not build a list you own, and can retarget or e-mail. This limits what you can do. Use social media absolutely but aim to have your subscribers or followers register for your e-mail list.
This is where having a niche-focused website is ideal, for securing your long-term income. Doesn’t need to be fancy, just focus on adding the content, and answering the pain points your niche has. Include an e-mail signup form for a newsletter, and give it time and consistency of content.
Generating targeted SEO content will drive traffic to your site but it can take some time for content to rank in the search engines and for traffic to flow to your website. Organic traffic is the CRÈME DE LA CRÈME of traffic but paid and other free traffic strategies will also increase the traffic to your site.
Get clicks on your affiliate links.
The purpose of content is to create traffic to your website but also to gain the trust of your visitor so that they will consider using the product or service you recommend. Placing content-relevant links within your content like hyperlinks in text or images is how people will locate your recommendations. Another way to get clicks on your affiliate recommendations is by offering your visitors something of value in exchange for their e-mail so that you can build the relationship and trust through the content you e-mail to them.
I love affiliate marketing, I think it is one of the best ways for people to create freedom in their lives, to live on their terms. It does take time to get the ball rolling and apply the effort to achieve results. With consistent effort, you will get results.