The Definitive Affiliate Marketing Guide To Crush It In 2019
Don't have the time to read the whole guide on affiliate marketing right now?
I know what it means to be busy and make the best out of your day. All affiliate marketers does.
For this reason I decided to create an infographic guide with all the major points of this guide.
Just click on the image and I will deliver directly to your inbox.
Chapter 1: Affiliate Marketing For Dummies
Chapter 2: Why Merchants Matter To Affiliate Marketing?
Chapter 3 Affiliate Programs And Networks
Chapter 4: How To Use Affiliate Marketing
Chapter 5: Organic Traffic For Affiliate Bloggers
Chapter 6: Paid Traffic For Affiliates
Chapter 7: More Sales With Affiliate Marketing
Chapter 8: The Affiliate Marketing Advantage
Chapter 9: Common Pitfalls In Affiliate Marketing
Chapter 10: Affiliate Success Stories
Chapter 11: Affiliate Marketing Glossary
Chapter 12: My Advice To You
What You Will Learn Here:
Affiliate Marketing for Dummies
If everything is new to you and you want to learn the basic of the affiliate marketing, this is the place for you. What it means, how it works and why it is so damn simple to start, but definitely not easy.
So, what is all about affiliate marketing? Since you are a beginner, you would like to go into that, but you are not sure why. Is it affiliate marketing safe? Is it growing?
Just to give you some stats:
- Users clicked more than 5 billion times and the affiliate marketing networks carried out more than 170 million transactions worldwide. (Source: IAB)
-Not only AM is growing fast, but it is already a massive global industry. In 2017 it was worth over $12 billion, with the US and the EU leading the way. Little surprise there, as these are the markets with the most online trade. (Source: IAB)
As you can see, affiliate marketing has no sign of deceleration, but the competition is more than ever. Let's move on to know how to crush it!
Since the beginning, you should relate to the affiliate marketing definition given by Pat Flynn, by SPI.com.
"Affiliate marketing is the process of earning a commission by promoting another person’s (or company’s) product." - Pat Flynn, SPI.com
For example, nowadays people use to buy a lot of digital products. If you want to profit from that, you should create a product to.
Therefore, thanks to affiliate marketing you won’t have your product, but more than that, you can promote thousands of products of any type. Seems wonderful, right?
Explained in a simple way, look at this simple image that can help you understand more. That's how it works.
Now let’s explain this image in four simple steps.
1. The merchant makes a digital product or service for a particular audience and he puts it on an affiliate network or creates an affiliate program around.
2. The Affiliate looks for products to promote, and he finds his. He takes the affiliate link.
3. Now, if you are an affiliate, you have to take people to click on that link. You create traffic to that link, free or paid. We will discuss later on those.
4. Once you take people to click through your link and they purchase the product or service, you earn a commission on every sale.
So ok Marco, I got it, but usually how much is this commission?
It depends, but the cool thing is that often can be very high. If you promote digital products, above all.
These months I promoted products with clickbank.com. The commissions are really high, around 75%. If you are really good at making sales, you can even ask for a 90% commission! Insane!
As you can see, affiliate marketing isn’t hard to learn, but it’s not easy.
The process makes sense and it is really simple, but it requires time to learn how to use all the tools and techniques to bring loads of people to your affiliate link.
Fortunately, you are in the right place to learn. As you read in the title, this is a comprehensive guide, so you can start here.
Why not, maybe you can make even your first sale after reading this. Go on.
Why Merchants Matter To Affiliate Marketing?
As an affiliate you should know what merchants and what they do. Moreover, you can even become one of them one day if you start building your own brand. Super affiliates are great in building in building rapports with them. Without any further delay, let's dive in.
Well, you surely will be an affiliate in the next few months, because you are reading this blog post. However, it could be helpful learning about merchants, so you can find them easier.
As wikipedia puts it:
"A merchant is a person who trades in commodities produced by other people. Anyone who is involved in business or trade."
So, as you can see, he is a good dealer. Nowadays, this word slightly changed his mean.
In marketing, we are used to name merchants people who create products and profit from them. Courses, seminars, books, physical products. They are all made by merchants.
If you want to be really precise, you can refer to them as product creators or owners, but it does not matter much.
There are loads of products and services out there ready to be sold. Let’s make some order over them.
You can find one of them every moment in the web. Amazon pays you a good 10% on fashion products. In this case, if you are an influencer on instagram, would be a great choice for you. Go for that!
Otherwise, tech niche is great to promote products with Amazon. They pay you an acceptable 7%.
Good facts: There are no cost of production or shipping and you are directing your efforts into a specific problem of your audience. They do not even have to wait. Start with them!
Bad facts: You won’t go so far selling them. They do not cost too much and commissions are low.
Digital services as Moosend are an example of products which can be promoted easily. At the beginning could be difficult taking people to buy for expensive services, but when you are an expert in a niche and people trust you and need that, they will take you word for granted.
The opportunity here is considerable since many products out there offer a recurring commission. A good friend of mine, Craig Campbell, made a living promoting Semrush.
If you are interested in more products to promote, you can check out my ultimate list of affiliate programs here.
Good facts: They come with a higher price range, and you can have great passive income with recurring commissions.
Bad facts: Sometimes could happen that products you use do not have affiliate programs, but it does not happen often. Moreover, you should be an authority or persuade people into make them thinking they really need that service.
I should have put them together with the others products, but they are totally different from some points of views. They are packages of knowledge in any field.
Usually you can choose them among the one of your niche, but you are free to promote even the ones of the other niches.
How can you sell them better? By offering huge value with the course. For example, some time ago I received an e-mail from Stefan James, who was promoting Amazon selling machine 9.
Hence, when I clicked down below to check the bonuses he put together for his users, I was astonished. He practically put out there all the materials he made in this year.
Just these three bonuses value the effort to buy ASM9, because already alone it's a great product to make a living with Amazon. However, if it's not enough, he even put all the videos he made about Amazon and E-com, to remind about the importance to start a business like this.
Good facts: they are usually pricey and they come with great commissions. They are popular between influencers. Moreover, they are focused on a particular area of expertise, which makes the process a lot easier for you and your audience. Bonuses can help a lot.
Bad facts: Since their cost is not so accessible, your audience needs to be really convinced to buy, otherwise it won’t be profitable. Over that, you should look at your reviews often to make sure you do not create false hopes.
Physical products are everything that has to be shipped to your customers. They could be e-commerce products, as well as CDs and paper books. These are some of the top deals of Amazon, which is the first you should think of when it comes to this niche.
According to MediaKix, people bought over 100 million products only in the Prime Day. Can you see the potential to make a living from that?
According to this graph of Statista, Amazon made a net annual revenue of 3 billions in 2017, and in 2018 increased a lot. What are you waiting for?
It's not over here.
E-com is huge too. you can promote loads of products over the web. Despite could seem strange, people search even on Google to buy. How can you promote them in the correct way?
Well, IAmAttila wrote an article just about that, so you can find which products to promote on facebook and their specific ads.
Good facts: they are cheap and fill customer needs in a creative way. Moreover, they are easier to sell because people are used to get them since ages in the shops. Many are not expensive, which can convert your visitors into buyers.
Bad facts: as the digital downloads, they have low commission and you would have to sell hundreds of them to make some good money. They even do not have recurring commission.
Affiliate Programs And Networks
Affiliate programs and networks are everything for an affiliate. They give you products to promote, affiliate managers to help you out with your journey and often there are great prizes to win. What are you waiting for the next subscription?
Before making some examples of affiliate marketing, you should know what affiliate networks and programs are. It’s easy to be confused about affiliate networks and programs. In fact, what the heck they are?
It’s really simple.
Affiliate programs are made by vendors around a single product or service.
Networks are composed of many products and services, usually divided for topics. There are literally hundreds of products to promote. A good friend of mine listed all the major affiliate networks in a great post. Be sure to check it out.
Which are better? Programs or Networks? Well, there isn't a correct answer.
If you are an expert in your niche and you use some products daily, you will go with few affiliate programs.
Craig Campbell, for example, is great with SEO and made many tutorials for Semrush. This gives me a huge advantage, because he becomes widely recognized as an expert and authority in his niche, so people are more open to buy through him.
However, if you are not known in the niche you are targeting, you should choose in the beginning the affiliate networks. They are huge and you will sure find a good product to promote.
Now, let’s pass onto the next step.
How to build a relationship with merchants?
Well, even if you are a beginner in affiliate marketing, you should learn that networking is much more important than in the past. It's in this way that I connected with websites like Strategico.io or people like Craig Campbell.
It's a boost for your campaigns and your most important asset. Now let's learn how you can build a relationship with a merchant. The following is a conversation had with the affiliate support of the Fat Decimator System. Unfortunately, I did not make a living with that, but I just want to show you the keys to create a good relationship. Let's start!
As you can see, the first message is a lot friendly. You start hoping for the best on their side, and you ask kindly for info about their products. Be sure to ask for things already working for others, and always ask for demographics. They are important when it comes to targeting. usually, they will reply with something like this:
As you can see, they gave me great tips to kickstart my promotion. It's not so difficult, just be sure to ask about specific things such as:
- Demographics, such as age, sex, specific countries in which the product is converting better and targeted interests. In my case, they have a website page to show you all this.
- Traffic sources, such as Facebook, Google or LinkedIn.
- Forbidden words or specific rules. These can lead to banned ads on some sources. For instance, if you plan to sell weight loss products on Facebook, there are many words you cannot use due to violation of customers rights.
- Landing page, such as an advertorial or a quiz lander. If you do not know what the heck they are, be sure to check it out the glossary at the end of this guide. You can even ask for them to the affiliate manager. They are willing to help you.
The response was unexpected, even for me. It was so easy that I thought why I hadn't done that before.
Now that you know a lot more about networks, programs, merchants and you know what is affiliate marketing, let's move on on traffic.
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How To Use Affiliate Marketing
You now know how to take traffic, which pitfalls to avoid, but you do not know how to use affiliate marketing in the right way? In this section there are common uses explained in a simple way. Let's dive in.
Maybe you want to be a blogger only, but Video is taking on everything and 80% of traffic will come from videos in 2020.
Altogether, 6 billions of hours of video are viewed every month and 52% of customers are more likely to purchase a product reviewed or used in a Youtube video.
You can create quality videos for almost any niche: affiliate marketing, blogging, SEO, tech and travel, to cite some.
Take a look at this image:
Marques is one of the greatest Youtubers in the tech niche. He creates great content and then put an affiliate link in the description. As we said, for every purchase he takes a commission.
The common, but not useless videos to make affiliate sales are reviews and how-to guide. However, you are not limited. Since you have a real life and you use any sort of tools everyday, you can even sell products making vlogs. Sky is the limit, really.
if you want to know more about using youtube for affiliate purposes, give an hint to this article by Authority Hacker.
Review posts. These one are really common among marketers. They are everywhere. You should create a knowledgeable review to be sure your audience will trust you. Take a look at this review of Hostingfacts.
As you can see, he put affiliate links twice just in the first paragraph. In the anchor text "Bluehost's services" and in the image. Is it spammy? Not at all. Spammy is uploading bad videos on Youtube, not creating a quality review for a product your audience could be in need of.
- List posts. This one was undervalued some time ago, but now people take on that without any doubt. You naturally make a list of products, people or services with an image for everyone of them.
As you can see, everyone is producing this type of content. If you want to build a post like this, be certain you can take a unique angle on the same things or conceive better content.
I made a list post myself about affiliate programs. Take inspiration and go build beautiful crafted content!
- Resources post.
This is huge if you think that every product lead to a possible commission. Moreover, a large part of your audience will go on your resources page to check out what the "authority" use everyday. Do it as soon as possible!
I know what you think. E-mails are outdated and everyone is on social networks. It's true, but not for loyalty.
There are billions of people on social networks, but they are not targeted neither loyal to you. That's why you have to create an email list.
When your list starts getting consistent subs, around 500 subs, many products you will launch in the future will eventually be already sold. Why?
Because in this case people trust your voice and your advice, so with your teachings.
If you want to see a detailed article, I suggest you to read this insightful case-study by Mike Dillard, the man behind Self Made Man.
Organic Traffic For Affiliate Bloggers
If your budget is limited and your hungry for success is high, you can tap into great amounts of traffic in the correct way, helping your audience and building trust, using social networks.
Before starting out, what is organic traffic? As Omniconvert puts it:
"The term “organic traffic” is used for referring to the visitors that land on your website as a result of unpaid (“organic”) search results."
Usually you create this type of traffic when you are a blogger. We do not use paid traffic, and even if we do that, it’s for branding, not for promoting products directly.
Why? Because blogging is more than promoting products. You can really create a bond with your readers and make them feel part of a tribe, which is the fundamental brick for most experts and influencers.
"Your own tribe. Your own rules. Your own value." - Marco Basile, mrMarcoBasile.com
Answers, answers, answers..
Nowadays, answers are one of the best ways to build authority, trust and engage audience all over the web. By the way, there are two absolute tools you should use right now: Quora and Reddit. Let's dive in and see why these are the biggest opportunities of the moments.
According to this article of SEJ, Quora reached 300 million monthly visitors last month. This is a huge potential of traffic for you, if you learn how to use in the right way.
First, your answers have to be thoughtful and well researched. If you can include charts and images, it's way better. Quora lets you establish as an authority figure.
Moreover, every time a reader upvotes your answer, it appears in their feed and to his friends, so you can get a huge amount of traffic by few quality answers alone.
if you are astonished by the stats about Quora, Reddit makes no difference. Every months 1.5 billion people go onto Reddit to search for answers and join communities. 1.5 billion.
The affiliate marketing community alone counts more than 15k subs alone. How can you create traction from this gold mine?
First, you need to know the concept of Karma. The more they vote positively your answer or comment, the better it gets.
When you have higher karma, usually your posts and answers has the ability to show up in the main feed.
Loads of people get there, so a wonderful possibility to get traffic.
Therefore, you must not be spammy with your links, otherwise you will be banned by communities. One routine you can follow:
- Craft a thoughtful answer to the user.
- Link to your article for more info.
- Thank the user for the question.
If you want to have more info for this topic, read this guide of Neil Patel.
Pins, pins, pins..
The last untapped resource of traffic I want to advise you is Pinterest.
This social network, based on images, was launched in January 2010 and now it gets 250 million monthly visitors, according to nytimes.
Basically, images are pins here. Every time someone clicks on your pin, he goes on your website. If he saves it, it becomes more and more popular.
How can you build traffic with pinterest?
- Create an authority blog post on a topic in your niche
- Create a beautiful pin around
- Post it in the group boards
- Get a lot of shares
Check out this case-study to see how can be beneficial to your blog.
Paid Traffic For Affiliates
Paid traffic is the other side of the medal regarding traffic. It's easier to get results on the short term, but it requires a little investment in the beginning. See if it can fit your needs.
Paid traffic is one of the largest field in digital marketing, due to his growth and his flexibility. You can easily find ads all over the web. On Google, Facebook and Bing, just to tell you about some.
However, it’s not necessary to buy ads to increase your traffic. Many of them build their audience through organic search and social media, and they have a lot of success.
So, what is paid traffic?
As Brent Dunn puts it:
"Paid traffic is any type of traffic that you have to pay for to obtain." - Brent Dunn, PPCmode.com
Usually people make mistake and think we refer only to PPC (Pay Per Click advertising), but it goes a lot further than that.
Infact, over PPC, we have Search traffic, display advertising, social traffic, media buying and solo ads.
You pay for each click that is sent to your site with PPC. You have Google Ads, Facebook, Twitter and many others that let you do this kind of stuff. It’s better to capture visitor information since you can retarget them later.
Have you ever been on a blog full of ads and banners? Well, I did. By the way, that is display advertising. Any kind of banner out there which is static or animated is part of it.
Usually you pay every time a visitor sees your ad, even when he does not click on it. It’s one of the worst type of advertising since you get to have a lots of visits to make some money and more over people are not engaged from this type of ad.
By the way, if you did reviews on the products ads are promoting, you can increase your chance of selling.
It’s commonly confused with PPC. It is contained, but they are not the same thing. In this case traffic is taken from search engines, such as Google and Bing. They are quite expensive, but it’s definitely worth it, since the user intent is true and explicit.
For example if you want to target the people searching for “buy Hostgator” you will see CPC is a lot high. This is because it is “buyer” keyword, so your audience is most likely to buy.
Since the buyer phase is the most expensive, you can target people in the information or research phase, and offer them a product based on their own interests later. In this way you will be able to create a relationship of trust with your customer and retarget him successfully for future campaigns.
A good example of paid search traffic is Google Ads. it is not so used between affiliates since it costs a lot, but if you know how to use it, it will definitely pays off.
This type of advertisement is quite different from the others since you pay for a time-space frame. For example, you pay a fixed cost to display videos or images on a blog for a period of time. It’s worth it only if you are conscious of your target demographics.
A great media buyer is Charles Ngo. He became famous with his successful campaigns in this type of paid traffic and he is even one of the super affiliates at STM.
If you want to learn a lot about media buying, I advise you to read this guide by a good friend of mine, Matteo Gasparello.
Social is the newest form of traffic. They are reliable, fast and highly suited to audience needs.
You can choose age, gender, political interests, behavioral interests as well as employment status. Take a look at the Audience Insights Manager of a Facebook Ad account.
As you can imagine, the best paid social traffic source out there is Facebook, for instance. It empowers entrepreneurs all over the world with endless opportunities to promote their businesses.
Do you want people emails? Create a lead ad. Do you want traffic? Choose the right goal for your ad. Do you want more e-com sales? Choose the conversion goal and see your earnings soaring.
Obviously, it's not so easy, but it is just to give you an idea of the endless opportunities offered by this platform.
With the right tools, you can even spy on your competition and check in which ways they are promoting your products. To do just that, check out this guide by IAmAttila.
I first heard about them at the MBsummit here in Milan. There I met Ryan Hamada, one of the speakers, who showed me how he makes till 30K/month through solo ads. Moreover, he showed to the audience how he was able to make $10K with a 100% ROI on a single campaign using solo ads, with only 0.3% conversion!
I was a little excited and found many other people who use them. But what are they exactly? In few words:
"A solo ad is an email advertisement that you buy from other email list owners."
When you pay, the owner will send a targeted email to a part of his subs. If the solo ad is good, subs are likely to convert in leads, then sales.
The great pro of solo ads is about the cost and intent. They are cheaper than Google Ads or Facebook ads and have fewer restrictions on products.
The only drawback of this type of paid traffic is about reliability. Some owners use blackhat methods or bot to let you have cheaper clicks. This only translates to a bad conversion rate.
So, where can I find good list owners who are trustable?
One website everyone advised me is Udimi.com. It’s reliable, it contains lots of offers and they have fast service.
Tip: You can even find them in facebook groups. Simply type in the search bar “solo ads groups” and you will find everything you need.
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More Sales With Affiliate Marketing
If you are here right now, it is to make sales with Affiliate marketing. I put together useful tips to increase your sales. However, you should always consider to test and apply what worked to become better in this.
Create a great sales funnel
Basically, a sales funnels leads your visitors into paying customers.
There are lot of types, from product to quiz. It’s up to you which to choose, depending on what you need to do.
One of the best platforms to create them is Clickfunnel. It was built by the marketing genius Russel Brunson.
He sold more than $1 million tickets for the 10x Growth Conference in 90 minutes. Start listening to his podcast to stay updated in marketing.
Basically, you set up a funnel to convert visitors into buyers, and that's why it's so much important.
If you want to learn more about sales funnels, you can check out this article by a friend of mine.
Contact influencers in your niche
Influencer marketing is huge today. Just take a look at these stats:
- 70% of Teens Trust Influencers More than Traditional Celebrities (Source: digitalmarketinginstitute.com)
- 49% of Consumers Depend on Influencer Recommendations (Source: digitalmarketinginstitute.com)
People trust influencers because they are authorities and they already built a deep relationship with your target audience.
These people, who click on the link through instagram photos or tweets, are more likely to buy than most out there. They are convinced from what they saw and they are craving for it.
As for other things, you should get the right things. If you are in the marketing niche, maybe you should leverage blogging and Youtube for your audience.
Instead, if you are in the travel or fashion niche, influencers are all on instagram, so you better build a great page on Instagram.
I started reading few days ago Pre-suasion by Robert Cialdini. It is fascinating how he is able to explain why we get convinced by other people. This leads me to some thoughts.
First of all, if you want to sell, you need to create mystery and value around the product you are trying to sell.
Think not about the benefits, but the transformations your visitors will get into once bought that product. This is huge since everyone think about their product benefits. However, people only want to have a better life.
This technique is always used by giants. Look at this spot by Apple.
People are engaged in using his product, so will you. Why this works so well? Because people want to find the unique thing which can transform their lives, so it has to be your product.
The Affiliate Marketing Advantage
Why you should do affiliate marketing? In this section I summed up all the benefits this business model brings to you and which will be your transformation throughout this journey. Let's take a look.
Before starting, I just want to let you know who I am and what I do. This is a personal branding website.
Because of that, I am about to reveal why I chose affiliate marketing over Amazon FBA as my first business model. Look below for all the advantages.
Me and my partner made the point few months ago and it turned out that with affiliate marketing:
- You do not need any type of inventory or physical product. You do not have to worry about customer care after the sale. Neither payment or sales tracking.
- The profit potential, if you consider all the products and services out there, it’s enormous.
- You can live anywhere, anytime, with anyone. Total freedom.
- You can start with a low investment till you do not profit.
- Easy to implement. You put a link in the right place and you are all set.
- In the long term, many tasks are outsourceable, so you will do less and less work.
- If you build a personal brand, in the long run you can create an enormous income.
- No expert knowledge required. It has to be a good product and worth recommending to your audience.
It’s all great I know. However, as any other thing that it’s worth to be done, affiliate marketing requires time and dedication to be mastered.
Great affiliates like Charles Ngo or IamAttila failed. Therefore, they kept it up with the market and his needs, and they won. They were great in adapting to the situations and willing to the hard work.
You have to create a strong mindset to face all the fears and hardships you might encounter along the way. It’s hard, but definitely worth it.
Common Pitfalls In Affiliate Marketing
Every time you fail, you should stand up and smile. Life tests you and if you are not brave and persistent enough, you won't get what you want. Be aware of these pitfalls and there will be a greater probability to succeed for you.
There are different reasons why you can fail in affiliate marketing.
Some of these come along with mindset, for example lack of patience for such endeavors or trying to cut corners of revenue with blackhat techniques.
This will always lead to get you kicked out by search engines and build all again, if you are willing to do that. You shall be willing to create quality content for your audience. In this way you can grow up in the long-term and build a profitable online business.
The others are about technical problems and changes. During your affiliate marketing journey, you may encounter one of these.
Social traffic sources change their policies
Let’s make an example of a famous social network who changed his policies.
Recently with the scandal of Cambridge Analytica Facebook became more and more stricted on the ads, at least for the ones who are just starting out, but not the biggest ones. Yes, you should start thinking about facebook as a corporation made for profit.
Facebook does not want to become the new MySpace, so he’s doing everything he can to never starting to being seen as a company who does not care of their users.
This could be a pitfall for your income or your organization, but if you are really into affiliate marketing, you’ll know that you have to change constantly in this world to stay ahead and outpace competition.
Two years ago the same thing happened to the Pinterest, who changed his mind about affiliate links pins. Some people made money from them, and they had to adapt to the change.
Your traffic and revenue can plunge
I have to admit. One error people commit in internet marketing is create only one source of income. Along the way, they see their earnings go down and sometimes they don’t even know why.
You have to diversify.
Even in "Rich Dad, Poor Dad", it is said you have to create multiple streams of income. For affiliate marketing, it's no way different.
Got it, but how can I do that?
Think about all the possible channels to use to create affiliate commissions or direct sales. Email marketing, Youtube, Podcasting and Blogging to cite some.
Start with those and then scale up with others you consider they are worth your effort.
I will create in the future articles on how to make that happen. Stay tuned.
You may need months to make it happen
While you are hearing about all the affiliate gurus around you, they won’t tell you the truth. Ever. Affiliate marketing requires little time to make it happen, even the first sale. The process is simple, but it’s not easy as you think going from A to B.
It’s not because you are not clever, you are not ready or some other reasons. It’s just about getting wealthy itself.
Success requires persistence and determination.
I personally got to my first sale using facebook ads after two months of trying ads and landing pages. Now I am about to scale it up as fast as possible.
Never told you cannot do that in few weeks, but you have to be willing to work more than expected.
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Affiliates Success Stories
Success stories exist in every field, and they do because they matter a lot! They keep people engaged and hopefully, ready to face giant obstacles and failures along the way. Read to charge your mindset!
If you reached this point, I would like to thank you to involve so much time reading my article. It’s important for me.
As in any industry, people need successful stories to be inspired and take the leap in their lives. Here are 4 successful affiliate stories you.
Since I started this website, I always had a thought in my mind: building a personal brand from scratch.
You see, nowadays people need to know who you are, and if you have a personal brand based on your skills, you can leverage your influence to create great streams of incomes through products you promote or you use.
Stefan James is an inspiration for me in this topic. He started his brand back in 2012, and since then he:
- released over 600 youtube videos.
- released more than 5 courses.
- Created a following of more than 800,000 fans on Youtube, Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.
- made a multiple stream of incomes to generate $3,724,058 in 2018.
He started back in 2007 with his first online business, and he affirmed he started making profits only one year and half later. Since then, his blog raises more than $100k per month, and many months even more.
He is the creator of 4 successful podcasts and the author of “Let go, transform moments of panic into a life of profits and purposes.”
He even created many courses on how to monetize your blog with affiliate marketing, how to start a podcast and creating a profitable online course.
I spoke a little about STM in my lead magnet.
Fundamentally, it’s a community of the greatest affiliates out there. I have been part of it for a while and read posts of him. They were great and thoughtful.
He owns an agency in media buying and he is currently doing 7-figure per year profit.
What is different from the others? He does affiliate in a different way, mainly not by blogging. I mean, blogging is great to build a brand, but if you really want to learn “true” affiliate marketing, you should check out this guy.
One of the other greatest minds of STM is absolutely Charles Ngo. He started back in 2008, when he was clueless about his future.
Once finished college and landed a job, he knew it was not his life. Hence, he started reading lots of books on making money, and eventually taking part in the four hour work week.
Even if he was broke, he learned how to set himself up for success and got what he wanted.
His blog has currently over 75,000 visitors per month and he hosted many masterminds around the world. Check out his work here.
Affiliate Marketing Glossary
There are a lot of terms which has to be learned and mastered to speak with other affiliates on the same level of expertise. Here I summed up all the most important for you. Take a look!
One of the different ways to build a landing page. It’s harder to do than others because it requires some copywriting skills, but it will stand out in conversion rate and CTR, once done in the right way.
This is your affiliate link. It helps advertiser and affiliate tracking visits and sales. It is easy to embed, in images and in text. Keep in mind that this is the only thing you need when you are just starting out.
Affiliate program is made up by around a service or a product. It determines your future earnings and common stats such as EPC and conversion rate on average.
This could be really helpful when you do not know how to start. They usually give you useful material as landing pages, articles, banners and affiliate links for your campaigns.
Also known as CTR, it is one of the most important metrics in affiliate marketing, because it helps you understand how much good or bad your ads and landing pages are performing. The better the CTR, the greater the possibility to profit.
Just as simple as that. It’s the percentage of the whole price for a sale or a lead drawn up with the seller. It’s usually high for digital products and low for physical.
This is a technique used to hide the landing page to the traffic source, as Facebook. In this way affiliates can profit even on illegal products such as gambling and adult.
The first metric you should look at when you want to promote a product. It’s a comparison between the number of sales and clicks on the affiliate link. Regarding your Ad, it’s sufficient divide the number of sales with clicks, then multiply by 100.
A text file sent from a site to a specific file in a user’s web browser. Cookies are used to assign a specific ID to a given user who has clicked the affiliate link to get to an advertiser’s website.
Cost-per-acquisition. It shows you the cost of a lead for a specified product. There are entire networks based on this method, and they actually works pretty well.
Cost per click shows you how much you are actually spending to acquire a link from a unique user. The lower it is, the better your advertising is performing.
A creative is any tool used by advertisers to promote their products through traffic sources. It could be text, image, link, pop-ups, email copy and more.
Whenever you want to test an ad or multiple ones over a specified period of time such as a day or an hour or more, that is dayparting. For instance, it is known that weekends are great to make sales.
How much did you earn with your recent campaign? If you performed 100 clicks on an ad and earned 200$, your EPC ( profit / click) is around $2. Some affiliate managers show you right away their EPC. Look for it to judge the product.
It’s any campaign where the affiliate pays for every click performed by a visitor. Very common in paid advertising.
Particular style of landing page when visitors get engaged by a series of questions that took over their psychology and persuade them to buy.
The return on investment is the gap between earnings and expenses and it is your most important metric to evaluate a campaign. The greater the ROI, the happier you will be.
As the name suggests, it’s the page where the sale happens. When your funnel ends, this start, so make sure it is a great page. More and more pages nowadays are VSL, which includes an initial video showing the product and the benefits.*
It’s the tracking engine developed by Facebook. Every marketer has his unique ID and pixel code. “Pixel fired” is a common expression for facebook marketers, meaning that an event has been triggered. There are various events, such as purchase and page view.
Whenever you are trying to see which people visit your landing page and from which ad, you can set up your affiliate link to make it happen. It usually comprehends age, sex, adset and country.
My Advice To You
You reached the end of this guide. Congrats to you! Before you leave, I would like to give you some personal advice to make you stand out in a crowded space. Give it a try!
I think that it’s one of the things that let people be successful, in every field or endeavor. You can hear about persistence in every book and interview, because it works. Always.
Do not be afraid of the obstacles on your way and face them as you should. Your next successful campaign is behind the corner.
Get out of your own way and scale
What does this mean? Well, as in any other thing, you should have your own unique take on things. Your landing pages and ads, even if wrong at the beginning, should be your own.
In this way you are sure you are doing your best and you will have successful campaigns, without cheating.
Think about it. If you are in the middle of successful campaign and something goes wrong, how do you handle that?
If you cheated all the time, you won’t know what to do. Instead, if you did things on your own, you will. That’s how much important is this advice, sometimes hundreds of thousands of dollars.
Once you find a great funnel, audience and a product, choose to scale. Face the fear or your ego and start scaling in the right way. More budget means more clicks, hence more sales if your funnel is good.
From CharlesNgo to Iamattila, everyone out there has been taught to scale once found a good campaign.
Outsource once you hit
You become a good affiliate and then you have to much work to handle. Maybe useless things to you and not something your time is worth of. What to do? Simple, you outsource to websites such as Fiverr or Upwork. For few bucks they make great things for your project.
Be aware that you should always hire smart and creative people. At some point, either with your blog or with your media buying agency, you should hire someone. You cannot and you must not do it alone. Help is always needed.
Create a brand
I can never insist enough on the importance of a brand, or personal brand. Nowadays it’s fresh air for you, because it is what Google wants right now, if done in the right way.
Every successful affiliate did that, such as Stefan James, Zac Johnson or IamAttila. That’s why you should that too.
People like Neil Patel understand why personal brand is so much important. When you are authentic and you are a real person people can recognize, everything becomes a lot easier for you, and your team if you have one.
I made up this massive guide to help you understand how affiliate marketing works, how you can get started and use traffic sources to grow your revenue. The most common terms are there for a reason. Master them, because if you do not truly understand them, you won't truly understand affiliate marketing.
I hope this guide helped you understanding the basics of affiliate marketing.
If you have any doubts regarding any part of this guide, please leave the question in the comments below. I will be more than happy to help you out.