If you’re scratching your head wondering what affiliate marketing is, no worries! I, too, had never heard of affiliate marketing until about 9 months ago. Now, it’s one of my main sources of income. In a nutshell, affiliate marketing is when you promote the products of other companies to earn a commission on sales. Let’s say you love MAC Cosmetics and run a makeup blog. You can sign up for MAC’s affiliate program and get a unique link you’ll use to promote your favorite foundations, brushes, lipsticks, and so on. If someone purchases some lipsticks through your link, you earn a percentage of the sale. Affiliate commissions typically range between 3%-40%.
Everyone likes a compliment. In fact, people like compliments so much they usually share it with their friends and followers! Use this to your advantage. It’s important for you to know who the big players are in your niche. For example, my website is about affiliate marketing. There are literally 10’s of thousands of affiliate marketers that are earning a full-time living. I could create a blog post about “The 10 Most Successful Affiliate Marketers In 2014” or “Affiliate Marketers Who Inspired Me” or any other list I decide to create. Once I’ve written an article and put it on my site, I can share it all over my social media accounts. But here’s the kicker – I would also send a message to all the affiliate marketers on my list with a link to the article. Just about every one of them will share it with their followers. Doing this on a regular basis can literally send thousands (even tens or hundreds of thousands) of visitors to your website every month while simultaneously helping to build your own following.
Getting accepted into a good affiliate program, such as Amazon Associates, requires you to have a website that is live. You cannot register for the Amazon affiliate program using your YouTube channel. You need to have your own website and the website needs to be informative and relevant to the products that you will promote. This is because a team from Amazon will check your website for eligibility for their affiliate program. Unless you have a good website set up, you shouldn’t apply for their affiliate program, since most of the time your application will be rejected.
The purpose of this article is to clarify exactly what is acceptable from the standpoint of Amazon. Since Amazon has been one of the leaders in affiliate marketing, if you follow their suggestions there is a good chance they will also be applicable to other affiliate programs. Please keep in mind that in order to be sure, you should read the guidelines for each affiliate program individually.

The researchers next investigated the text of content with affiliate links and analyzed whether they made any disclosures about their economics to users. Among content that had affiliate links, 10.49% of YouTube videos and 7.03% of pins on Pinterest had disclosures. Worse, the disclosure language recommended by the FTC was only included on roughly 2% of affiliated content across the two platforms.
While you need to be careful about sharing photos under a copyright protection, you can still find many copyright free images. For example, you can go to Google Images, click on the little gear icon in the upper right corner, click on “advanced search” then only show images that are not protected by copyright. In almost every industry, you will be able to find a ton of images you can use or even edit for your own purposes. 

Shopify is an eCommerce solution similar to PayPal or Stripe.com—it allows you to make sales, purchases, and payments online. For someone running an affiliate program, this is obviously a necessary piece of the puzzle. Not only do you need to get paid for your sales, but you need your customers to be able to make purchases and—much as you’d like to forget this part—you also have to pay your affiliates!
Shopify’s affiliate program is narrower since their target audience is those who want to build their own eCommerce sites. The program makes up for this with sizable rates. You can earn up to $58 for each successful referral. The company also has various tools to help in your affiliate campaign, including tutorials on how to better promote their products.
Photos say a thousand words, and they are one of the best ways to draw attention for social media posts. Think about scrolling through your newsfeed – what types of posts do your eyes naturally fall upon while carelessly scrolling? Photos! Using product photos or related photos to go along with your social media for affiliate marketing posts will naturally draw the eye of your reader, and therefore naturally draw their attention. Using Instagram for your social media for affiliate marketing platform of choice can really show you what the power of photos hold.

Very useful info, and thanks for the heads-up about Etsy not allowing affiliate links on Pinterest! Have you ever tried advertising on Pinterest, i.e. paying Pinterest to promote your pins? I was wondering if that could be lucrative with affiliate marketing, where the margins are always lower than when you have your own product to sell. I’m also wondering if it would be lucrative to advertise on Google, Facebook and Youtube (found this guy who supposedly made a lot of money that way – https://moneytestimonials.com/crestani-free-webinar/ ). I’ll probably do my own experiments with this but if you have experience in this area I’d be very interested to hear about it!
LeadDyno comes built-in with the tools your affiliates will need to dominate the space of social media. But it will take a little upfront investment on your end to ensure that these tools are ready to put to work. Make sure to create scripts that your affiliates can use in order to make the process as easy on them as possible. After all, your affiliates are human—if you make their job easier, then they’re more likely to sell your product.
That’s not to say that running social media campaigns will be difficult from your position as affiliate program manager. We’ve put together many of the tools you’ll need to get started. Heck, once you sign up, you can easily give out affiliate links that can be transferred to Facebook statuses, Twitter tweets, and LinkedIn updates. You don’t have to be intimidated by social media if you’ve never used it for business purposes.

With all of my blog posts, I have the consistently scheduled to share on social media and on Pinterest. This keeps the content in front of my audience. I use the social media scheduling tools Post Planner and Tailwind for this. Many affiliate programs also have great affiliate managers that will send out information with special promotions that you can share. If there isn’t a big sale or promotion going on, I will still try to feature certain high-converting posts on Pinterest, to my email list, etc.
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