Can you think of your favorite product? It could be anything. A wine-opener. A microphone you plug into your laptop when dictating notes? A quirky table-lamp. The point is, the list would be endless. Now imagine if you could sell these products on behalf of someone and get a decent commission on every single item sold? This is the essence of affiliate marketing, and it has been taking the world of e-commerce by storm for the past few years. Why? Because it harnesses the potential marketing power of social media. Here’s how your business could boost from it.
Win-win business model
Affiliate marketing has proved to be so successful because both parties involved, advertiser and affiliate, benefit. For the former, this type of business model is essentially CPA or cost per action, which reflects the fact that the previously popular enterprise model, CPC or cost per click, has been widely superseded. Rather than relying on an expensive scattershot approach that involves expensive banner headlines or links being clicked for an infinitesimal return, CPC has far more potential for generating revenue.
For the affiliate, it is free to sign-up to programs, and once this has been done it is really up to the marketer to determine how much income they make by how much time they are prepared to devote to streamlining their promotional stream.
Once an affiliate marketer is up and running and has gained a foothold in what they are doing, there will be opportunities for them to branch out and sign-up to any number of programs. But when setting out in this type of venture in the first instance it would be far better to concentrate on one product area. Although it can be useful dwelling on subjects you are interested in, you can also consider topics or services with universal appeal. With online relationship sites on the up-and-up, you might consider becoming a dating affiliate!
If you already have some sort of web presence then this can be your starting point for getting into affiliate marketing. Whatever topic you are already focusing on can be readily tied-in with relevant products. Once you have identified the items you wish to promote, the next step is to sign up for an appropriate affiliate program. The retailer will forward you hyperlinks that will allow your customers to click-through straight to the purchasing page on their own site. There will be a temptation to just bombard your web platform with all manner of sales links. But this approach is very shortsighted and counter-productive.
At this point, it is worth interjecting a naught of caution. Affiliate marketing has never made anyone rich overnight. But if you take some time to construct your blog content around these hyperlinks, you will create a platform where your customer base can become engaged in whatever it is you are actually selling. In this way, customers will be more likely to want to come back.
Writing killer content
So rather than posting links in the hope that random customers will alight on your webpages and click through to sales, what do you want to do is entice site visitors to be continually engaged with whatever it is you are discussing in your social media channels. When you blog about a certain product you want to do so constructively, injecting your product reviews with enthusiasm and outlining the benefits there will be for buying this item. You don’t want to overdo this at this stage as your audiences will be astute enough to recognize when something is being oversold. But if you can establish the right balance between quality reviews that genuinely respect customer integrity while explaining how beneficial the item will be, then you will see your enthusiasm translating into sales.
To conclude, you want to be seen as being something of an expert when it comes to managing this product and providing your customers with direct access to it. People will be more likely to click on the link in the hope of purchasing the item if you have succeeded in persuading them that it is definitely going to be in their interest to do so.