If you have anything to do with blogging, you’ve probably heard the term before.
“Affiliate marketing” is a highly effective promotion strategy, though many aren’t aware of it.
This marketing niche is pretty important for many online businesses, and yet a lot of new business owners have no idea what the term means.
Here’s a brief introduction to the subject which should clear up a few questions for you.
What is Affiliate Marketing?
So what is affiliate marketing? This is a very large question.
The simplest way I could define affiliate marketing for beginners is making money by promoting another business.
There are a lot of different methods which fall into the “affiliate marketing” category. However, when most professionals use the term, they usually mean a system of blogging.
You would write articles on your blog, including links to the client’s landing page. Every time someone clicks on this link, you earn a commission.
Another common variation involves referring someone to the client’s site whenever they take some kind of action.
Let’s say you had a customer who fills in some kind of form or gives you their email address. You’d be paid for referring them to the client’s business.
Though many methods exist, there are certain things which makes affiliate marketing go hand in hand with blogging.
Build a Community Around Your Blog
Obviously, it’s not the only way to make money from blogging, and won’t suit the style of every single blogger. However, affiliate marketing is more effective in this context.
This is due to a certain degree of trust between the blogger and their readers. As the trust grows stronger, the readers usually follow more recommendations from the blogger.
Your aim should be building a community, so to make the users feel like home. There are many ways you can achieve this, one is by focusing on the comments section of your site. Or you can create a forum, in a sub-domain of your blog. Or else, check how to use DeviantART to build a loyal community around your website.
However, there might be some cons. You can probably see that this presents a certain amount of risk. While there’s stacks of money in it, many people still see bloggers as unbiased and trustworthy sources of information. If the blogger promotes the wrong product, or makes their link far too obvious, the trust can be broken in an instant.
There are a lot of bloggers out there who make the majority of their money through affiliate marketing. However, it’s not a fool proof get-rich-quick scheme in the slightest.
The success of affiliate marketing hinges on a variety of different factors. Obviously, the blog or website in question needs a healthy flow of traffic. It’s no good having a lot of backlinks out there if no one sees them!
Furthermore, it can be tough to find products which are relevant enough for the blog. Blogs which are too general won’t get that much traffic.
However, those with a narrow niche will find affiliate opportunities hard to come by. Even if the blog’s all about consumer products, it can be hard to sell things to the readers.
People follow blogs for a wide variety of reasons, but very few use them as catalogues!
I hope this introduction has given you a better idea of what affiliate marketing is and what it means for your business or blog.
There are challenges to making this method work, but when it does it’s fantastic!