TABLE OF CONTENT
- Breaking it all down
- What is affiliate marketing?
- Why is it relevant?
- What you need to know going into the affiliate marketing industry
- The connection
- Social media and affiliate marketing
- Why you should hop on the train right now
- What you stand to gain
- How to make it all work
- Practical guide to help you harness the power of social media in affiliate marketing
- Final Word
BREAKING IT ALL DOWN
What is Affiliate Marketing?
Passive income has become a very hot topic in the digital market space this past few decades and many keep looking for the best platform where they can make money in their sleep, literally.
Passive income gives us the benefit of applying minimal effort to a job in order to receive profit. It gives us the freedom to multitask, have other jobs, and focus on other things while a business somewhere else makes money for us, without us reapplying new efforts.
There are different forms of passive income making schemes. Affiliate Marketing is a very popular but often overlooked business and marketing strategy, because some feel it’s too technical or arduous a process.
Simply put, Affiliate Marketing is the interpretation of a very old idea- getting a commission for a sale. It is an organic flow of trade between a merchant (individual/business who provides a product), an affiliate (who uses their platform to promote the service or good, increase visibility and market reach), and a buyer (who makes the purchase from the merchant, through the affiliate).
It is pretty straightforward and there is no much to the process than each trade point (merchant/affiliate/buyer) understanding their role and the appropriate means to:
- Contact an affiliate(merchant)
- Promote the product (affiliate)
- Purchase the product (buyer)
The affiliate takes the work of sales from the hands of the merchant and earns a reward in return.
Why is it relevant?
From the premise we left off affiliate marketing is relevant uniquely to the merchant, affiliate and buyer.
To the merchant, hiring people to advertise and sell your products is a cost-effective and low-risk marketing strategy.
It provides you the flexibility to focus on other core parts of your business, so in a sense, you are making double for the time that is normally assigned to selling a product- allowing others make sales on your behalf, leads to higher return on investment (ROI) all the while increasing your brand awareness resulting in business growth!
To the affiliate, it is a passive income generating scheme that requires minimal time and cost. All you require is a platform where you can create awareness for a product and the business you choose to partner with.
To the buyer, affiliate marketing sells guarantee, trust, and assurance which is a step up from sales. This is called intentional marketing, this strategy is adopted by leading multinationals and brands in order to foster loyalty among their customer base.
It tells buyers “we are not just out to make profit, we have real life people that can attest to the effectiveness of our product in your lives.”
What you need to know going into the Affiliate Marketing Industry.
Though we have established affiliate marketing to be a skill anyone can pick up and start making money from today (which is true), every business venture has a form of technicality to it.
You have to know the niche you would like to sell in. Most businesses today offer different affiliate marketing programs, pick the one that is most suitable to your niche. If you fancy sports or business, sign up to a program that is in line with your interests.
An affiliate marketing program includes referral links, custom affiliate sign-up pages, shareable marketing materials, and detailed performance reports.
Once this is completed the merchant creates affiliate links for products which the affiliate marketer in turn shares on their sales platform.
Becoming an affiliate marketer requires you have basic knowledge on how Search Engine Optimization (SEO) and Search Engine Marketing (SEM) works, this is how you and the business you now represent are going to be found on the internet.
Generally, the affiliate marketer earns income through the pay-per-click (PPC) method, so the more a customer finds you online or you use tools to increase visibility, the more you earn.
Building up from that, we are now going to explore the best tool you should take advantage of today in order to leverage on your affiliate marketing venture – Social Media.
Social media and affiliate marketing
Social media shapes all our interactions and influences our activities, it serves as a universal bridge that helps us build relationships and connections. Beyond that, it has dominated our businesses and it controls a large part of market behaviour.
Social media holds a world of benefits for affiliate marketing programs and this is why different businesses, small-scale and large-scale, brands, corporations, and multinationals harness the synergy of affiliate marketing on social media platforms.
Social media platforms provide the consumer reach affiliate marketers seek, it is a secure closed-ended tool that fosters a stable transaction network, visibility and legitimacy.
For the merchant, affiliate marketer and buyer- social media platforms are easy tools for business growth, revenue generation and customer satisfaction, respectively.
Why you should get on the train right now
Every social media platform available is already a saturated space for markets. People are used to them, they use them for their way of life and frankly, missing out on utilizing social media for affiliate marketing costs businesses in the short run.
It weakens your visibility, more than a third of millennials worldwide are online all the time, and constantly consuming content.
They also control a lot of spending power online, which is estimated at 1.4 trillion dollars generated from millennials alone. They are ten times more likely to talk about a brand online and make a purchase there than they would in a physical market.
GenerationXers follow closely behind with them spending more than a quarter of their time constantly online.
The Gen-Zs are gradually taking the lead as a new emerging market where each average Gen-z spends more than half their total revenue on social media, and where 74% of this group spends all their time online. This means that at any hour of the day, you can reach them online.
What you stand to gain
There are numerous benefits to setting up an affiliate marketing program on social media. For one it increases visibility.
It makes customers aware of many brands and businesses, keeping track of their updates, changes and new products. It is an easy means of disseminating information to a broad number of subjects within a split second.
For the marketer and merchant, it requires almost zero cost of set up. The internet is mostly free, there are no extra costs for basic features and it does not require much to operate. It is usually a one-point interface which is uploading all the product details on the particular platform.
It is simple to reach a specific target audience. Every social media platform has it’s unique coding instructions and designs that optimize user search for businesses.
This means that it can help you filter your reach to who your product is intended to, at no extra cost. They are originally designed this way and it takes the hassle of reaching the right clients.
It gives you the autonomy and ease of handling your own account. Social media platforms allow you to personalize the business or brand you represent giving you the diverse options physical markets lack.
HOW TO MAKE IT ALL WORK
Practical guide to help you harness the power of social media in affiliate marketing
Here, we are going to explore a unique guide for each major social media platform, breaking down their distinctive characteristics, and the best ways for affiliate marketers to utilize them.
Facebook is an excellent platform for affiliate marketing, especially if you want to foster long-term sales and patronage with clients. Billions of people access this site every month, so here’s how you can make the most of it:
- Create a Facebook page or Facebook group: this is better than spamming strangers on the internet. People feel safer with connections, a Facebook group creates a sense of community which shows the merchant or product cares for the consumers needs. Studies show that people are more comfortable buying a product when they see others picking up the same thing, so in a Facebook group you are guaranteed each client sees the other making the very purchase they want.
Instagram is more visuals than words and people on Instagram have shorter attention spans than they have on other platforms, this means you have to leverage on the power of visuals to sell your story.
- Make use of coordinated aesthetics. Businesses are more appealing to the masses on Instagram when they see a pleasing theme on your page. This is highly beneficial for affiliate marketers who do not want to do too much work in product description as the images tell all the story. So sit back and relax, and watch your revenue rise per click on Instagram.
With YouTube Ads, more than half of the work is done for affiliate marketers. It is a platform dedicated to rewarding salespeople. Not only do you stand to generate income through the clicks viewers tap on your link, but YouTube provides income for using their platform too.
So here’s how you can make the most of it:
- Review videos: consumers trust brands that have quality testaments. Making a video and explaining how a product worked for you or others guarantees more sales than someone dropping a link to a product and asking people to buy it.
Heard people say TikTok is the party place of all social media platforms? This is because TikTok is where all the action is.
TikTok is the biggest disrupter in the social media space, that means an estimated one million videos are viewed everyday annually, and this means the chances of your content being viewed are very high.
The rate of views on this platform is increasing sporadically, this is how to leverage on it:
- Use organic reach: each affiliate marketer on this platform has a potential reach of 300+ million viewers, and what’s more? You don’t have to upload a long video, just a few seconds of captivating content that is monetized in the end. Voila!
LinkedIn is where business power brokers hang out online. The platform has an estimated 700 million members solely seeking business opportunities, this makes it the ideal place to spread your wings as an affiliate marketer. Here’s how to excel on LinkedIn as an affiliate marketer:
- Reach out! LinkedIn is a great leveller that gives you access to potential clients with ease. Join conversations and add value to them. LinkedIn members are savvy and professional, present your product this way and engage them to see the benefits in buying.
Twitter is a powerful digital tool that can make widespread changes in a matter of seconds. It enables conversations that are intended to achieve an action from an end.
- Take advantage of twitter analytics insights. Twitter analytics tell you where your tweets should be directed and the proper keywords to use to increase clicks on your affiliate links. Not only do members see your link, it is also commonplace in twitter for your posts to be reshared, so this increases your visibility and makes your customers’ followers your followers.
Social media affiliate programs are the quickest and surest ways of making money online. All trends point toward social media taking over the entire scope of business in the next few years.
Don’t miss out on the opportunity to solidify your place in the market and generate the most revenue from it. Remember, the true beauty of affiliate marketing is that you do less work, save more time, lead a flexible life, and secure your financial future.