If you’re running WordPress, I use a plugin called Thirsty Affiliates to cloak, manage, and track my affiliate links (you have to pay Thirsty Affiliates for their add-ons if you want extra features). The free version is still good… just install the plugin and find the “Affiliate Links” tab on the left of your dashboard. Add the link name and destination URL, save it, then copy the cloaked version of the URL so you can add it to your Youtube video annotations.
Your Facebook page is your “face” (pun not intended, I promise). Of all your accounts, people will probably look up your Facebook the most. So what you share here is extremely important. It’s better to be quite mean with promotional content (of course, this doesn’t apply if you have a coupon website). The common ratio is 80/20 – that means that out of eight posts, two can be promotional. Compared with your other social media, you should be sharing the least amount of affiliate links there.
You can benefit from social media in two ways: by promoting the content which you create or putting links directly in your social media posts. Chances are you already use social media to promote your blog or website (if not — what are you waiting for?) But let’s face it – in this day and age people don’t always want to click a link to go to a website where you have to click more links. Nearly 50% of affiliate-referred traffic originates from a mobile device. And you know better than me, most of the time on your phone you’re checking Twitter or Instagram, not reading lengthy blog posts.
Affiliate marketing isn’t the only strategy to have evolved recently. Influencer marketing has undergone a makeover of its own, becoming more transparent, more streamlined and more effective. If you have felt in the past that influencers do not offer the same transparency or sales-driven results as affiliate publishers, you might be pleasantly surprised by recent updates and changes in the industry.
Products are now put in a category. The commission will be based on the category each product has been placed in whether or not the category is correct. For instance, I had a sale for a child riding toy tractor. Instead of it being in toys category which would have only earned me 3%, it was actually placed in lawn and garden category which I then actually earned 8% instead.
Creating quality content means something different for each industry and brand — whether it’s an engaging post on Facebook, an informative tweet or a beautiful looking picture (with a filter of course!) on Instagram. There are as many ways that social media can be leveraged for affiliate marketing as there are companies willing to make those connections.
Convincing humans to buy products is a massive business called marketing, and few areas of marketing are growing as fast as influencer marketing. Influencers on platforms like Instagram, Pinterest, and YouTube can command prodigious fees based on their audience size and engagement: some data suggests that a single video on YouTube by a top influencer can command as much as $300,000.
They use all the main social media networks, but their Instagram practice is a great example. With beautiful travel pictures from around the world, you only need to spend 5 minutes on their profile before you want to go to their site and search for a cheap trip abroad. Not only does their feed look pretty, it’s very effective at getting you to click right through to their website once you see what you’re missing.
Before you can expect people to follow you, it is important that you build yourself some credibility. Find those in your industry and begin following them. If you’re an affiliate marketer, for example, you can start following all of the companies you promote. But you should also follow individual people such as experts in your field. For example, I have a website called DogFoodInsider.com. On my twitter page (@DogFoodScoop), I follow all of the major dog food companies as well as popular dog experts such as Dr. Karen Becker and Cesar Milan. I also follow dog nutritionists, pet food stores, dog breeders, and anyone else involved with dogs. I’ll even follow random people who are clearly dog lovers and post a lot about their dogs.
Become a Groupon Affiliate. The Groupon affiliate program also lends itself to Twitter, where many users are interested in finding out about timely, local opportunities. Groupon affiliate marketers can earn up to 10% commissions for sales generated. Groupon is arguably one of affiliate marketing’s greatest success stories, and there are some good resources out there for those looking to get started. (Daily deals competitor Living Social also has an affiliate program that can be used through Twitter.)
Are we all okay with affiliate marketing on Twitter now? Twitter is supposed to be about building relationships within whatever industry you are in. Once that is broken than Twitter has no purpose for any of us. It will just become a big spam web site. I think it is ridiculous to even give people ideas on how to become a good affiliate marketer on Twitter. I know these are tips to help people become good affiliate marketers on Twitter without spamming, but you know these people are going to spam anyways. Most people do not even know what spamming is so when they are doing it they don’t realize they are doing anything wrong.
I want you to remember too that affiliates don’t have to only be products or digital goods, they can also be courses and services from people you respect and want to promote. If you’re like me and your ideal clients are business owners, maybe you’ve worked with a web designer that simply knocked your socks off, reach out and establish an affiliate relationship if one is not already setup.
Second, it’s a good idea to create a few new personal boards that are used solely for the purpose of pinning products that are for sale (using your affiliate links of course). For example, I have created a personal board called “Gorgeous Throw Pillows and Bedding.” The description for the board is “This board is full of gorgeous throw pillows, accent pillows, decorative pillows, duvet covers, sheets and bedding. Changing your throw pillows and bedding is such an easy way to refresh any room on a budget!” I pin beautiful products to it and edit the urls of the pin to my affiliate links, using the process described above.
With the focus on simplicity and automation, Shopify is a robust platform that allows creating an affiliate program in a couple of clicks. It is easy to find new partners, contact them and expand your affiliate network while focusing on other business processes. You can track your success, modify commission rates, and grow your partnership network with minimum effort.
People love to buy…we love to consume great content. However, we have to be warmed up before we do it. On social networks, it’s the relationships that sell, not the message. It’s really up to you, though. You can spam people and make a quick buck (maybe), or you can build credibility and build a successful business. In my opinion, taking the latter route is much more efficient.
Not too hard, right? Aside from the equipment you need, which at the beginning will be pretty minimal anyway, you’re not going to need to invest any money. It will only take a little bit of time to make great videos and start growing your following. Heck, if you’re super shy and don’t want your face on camera, you can just use a PowerPoint presentation and narrate a presentation for your audience. The only one stopping you from promoting affiliate products on YouTube is YOU!
Enthusiasm. You don’t need to be bubbly and happy throughout your video — you should be yourself. But you should not speak in one tone and completely deadpan. Try to get people excited about whatever it is you’re video is about. Think of the things YOU like to see in YouTube videos and then try to do that the best you can. Remember, you will never please everyone, but you don’t have to.
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?
When you include an affiliate link in your description be sure to say somewhere that it is an affiliate link. This can be in the form of a disclaimer at the bottom of your video description or as a parenthetical notation right next to the link. Also be sure to say what product it is for. Nobody likes being tricked into landing on iTunes or Amazon when they think they are going to an artist’s fan page or the ultimate zombie survival blog.
Yet, if you are still not sold on the payoffs of offering high commissions, remember that your affiliates are not just bringing you sales, they’re bringing you customers. You’ll have access to people who you can re-market to time and time again. Repeat customers have a 60-70% higher chance of buying from you compared to a first time customer, and they also give your store more word of mouth marketing. Thus, it’s best to do what you can to foster a strong, mutually beneficial business relationship with them.
Hi, Steve! Thank you for sharing this. You’re right, I shy away from making videos because I don’t believe I can make one. I enjoyed watching the video that you have prepared; it was very explanatory. I also visited Animoto and I liked it very much. I want to start making my own video now and I hope I will be successful in creating and promoting it.