What is Affiliate Marketing?
If you’re selling a digital product, then there is another very effective way to gain a lot more sales and that is to get other marketers to promote it for you. The best way to do this is via ‘affiliate marketing’ and learning about affiliate marketing is important if you want to understand a lot of the conversation you’ll find in marketing forums and elsewhere.
Essentially, an affiliate is someone who promotes an online product in exchange for commission. So, if you sold an ebook for 40% commission, that would make you an affiliate. To do this, you simply use a URL that is unique to you. When someone clicks on that link, they will be redirected via a page that will leave a cookie on their computer and they will be identified as having been sent by you.
How Affiliate Marketing Can Help You Promote Your Product
The great thing about getting affiliates to help you promote a product is that you’re essentially building an army of affiliates, all of whom will be able to help you to get more sales for your product. If you can sell 100 eBooks a quarter yourself, imagine how many eBooks will sell when you have 1,000 affiliates!
The key to getting lots of affiliates though is not to be greedy. Create a great product that you know will sell well (and that affiliates will believe in too) and then be willing to give away a good proportion of your profits – over 50% ideally.You can then look for affiliates by listing your product on affiliate networks like JVZoo (JVZoo.com). ClickBank (ClickBank.com) and Commission Junction (CJ.com)
How to Make Money as an Affiliate
Making money as an affiliate is also a very important strategy for internet marketers. Internet marketers make money by promoting the products of other creators and that allows them to make a big money without having to invest lots of time or effort into creating their own products.
What’s more, is that by selecting an existing product rather than making one from scratch, you can remove the risk element by focusing on a product that is already selling very well. Affiliate marketing is a great way to monetize a website and to build a business with zero up-front investment.
Whether you are an affiliate or a product creator, you are going to find that there are a few different materials and terms that come up regularly and that you will end up using to build your campaign.
These materials and terms include:
- Sales Funnel – A sales funnel is a selection of free blog posts or articles, perhaps a mailing list, maybe a free report, followed up by a paid report and increasingly ‘high ticket’ (expensive) items. The idea is that you are gradually introducing people to your brand and then helping them to invest more and more in your message and to become increasingly interested in spending more with you.
- Sales Page – A sales page is a page that is entirely dedicated to selling your product. That means that there will be no external links, no distracting content or images… just one ‘sales script’ designed to promote the product and make it sound highly desirable. This will be interspersed with ‘Buy Now’ buttons and will use persuasive writing.
- Free Report – A free report is a small excerpt or example of your sales funnal.
- VSL – A VSL is a ‘Video Sales Letter’. This is a spoken script that works like sales copy to engage the visitor and get them to buy.
- Squeeze Page and Email Swipes – Email swipes are ready made marketing messages, we’ll look a little more at how a squeeze page and mailing list work together in a moment.
As a marketer, you can either create these materials yourself, get them free when you sign up as an affiliate, or use other strategies to promote the products. Either way though, understanding these terms is going to come in very handy when you are learning about internet marketing.
Welcome to the World of Affiliate Marketing
It’s worth understanding this concept, as like I said, it comes up a LOT in forums and online communities. In fact, for many people, internet marketing and affiliate marketing are somewhat inseparable. You will find this when you check out sites like Warrior Forum and Black Hat World. These are forums where internet marketers can discuss ideas and tips with one another, as well as finding opportunities, business partners, clients and services.
Warrior Forum even has its own affiliate network. Spending some time on these forums is a very good way to get acquainted with the world of internet marketing and all it entails. You’ll also find a ton of good advice, as well as being able to hire writers, SEO companies, web designers and other professionals to help you get your campaign up and running.
Here, you will find a lot of people selling link building services but you should be wary of these as the links are often low quality. Spend some time here though, learn the ropes and find out what it really means to be an internet marketer!