GrowMap readers are in for a real treat because our guest post today is from Affiliate Marketing Consultant Tricia Meyer, better known to her fans as @SunshineTricia.
It includes an Introduction to Affiliate Marketing video Tricia did with Deborah Carney (aka @loxly on Twitter). Deborah is an Outsourced Program Manager (OPM) which is what businesses not familiar with the Affiliate Marketing industry would call an Affiliate Manager.
I know more bloggers than I know affiliate marketers and the opposite should be true because every blogger should be an affiliate marketer.
What if you don’t care about making money off of your blog?
It doesn’t matter. Money isn’t the only benefit that you can get from affiliate marketing (although it is certainly a big one!).
I recently presented this seminar called “5 Affiliate Marketing Benefits for Bloggers” at Blog Indiana and again for a Blogging ABCs webinar. Here’s an introduction to that seminar:
I can’t help but continue to spread the word about this topic because I believe in it so strongly.
AFFILIATE MARKETING BENEFITS FOR BLOGGERS
What can you, as a blogger, get out of affiliate marketing? I’ve tried everything I am about to suggest to you and all of it has worked for me or others that I have worked with in my affiliate marketing consulting business. Some of it just depends on trial and error and the type of site that you have.
Revenue: Most of us like making money for what we write. If you are writing about a great deal at Gap, why not include an affiliate link? If you are showing how to use the latest, greatest vegetable peeler, why not include an affiliate link?
Successful affiliate marketing is about finding products and
merchants that you like and you think your readers would like
and connecting your readers to the merchants.
Whether you use banners, product links, datafeeds, widgets, or videos, you can share what you like with your readers in a genuine way and make money.
Free Products: Merchants like to give products to people who will use them and talk about them. Who better to give them to than their affiliates?
As you form relationships with merchants,
do not be afraid to ask them for free samples.
It’s a great way to try something out and then tell your readers what you think. Even better than doing written reviews is to do video reviews because uploading your video to Youtube gives both you and the merchant increased exposure. Then you can monetize your reviews with your affiliate links to increase your conversion rates.
Contest Sponsorships: Do you know the benefits of running contests? Work with your merchants to create custom contests for your visitors. Merchants get increased brand recognition plus you get better engagement on your site, the opportunity for the contest to go viral, and backlinks. We did an entire contest podcast on Blogging ABCs that you can listen to if you want to learn more about how to do them as well as the pitfalls (Blogging ABC’s 13 – How to Structure Giveaways).
Running contests with merchants is trickier than just doing
reviews but the rewards can be greater as well.
Content: Having been a blogger for over 7 years now, sometimes I feel like my content is getting stale. Affiliate marketing is a great way to get fresh content. Merchants are good about sending hot product lists and insider information. Don’t want to make your own videos but would like to add some to your site? Talk to your merchant to see if they have any that work with your reviews and links.
Affiliate marketing is a constant source of new content ideas -
especially when you pay attention to merchant newsletters.
Networking: Affiliate marketers are an incredibly diverse population. You’ll find everyone from graphic artists to php coders to traditional marketers. And more bloggers! Attending conferences like Affiliate Summit (and participating in their forum) will help you find both kindred spirits as well as collaborators.
SEE the full Affiliate Marketing Benefits for Bloggers Webinar:
All of this is just the tip of the iceberg of what I go into in my presentation. If you would like information about how to see the entire webinar for free, visit Sneak Preview of 5 Affiliate Marketing Benefits For Bloggers Webinar Replay. It starts with some affiliate marketing basics as well if you are just getting into the industry.
I would love to be able to update this post a year from now and say that I know more affiliate marketers than I do bloggers because all of the bloggers are giving affiliate marketing a chance.
DISCLOSURE: Every blog post needs a great image and I insisted that Tricia let me put HER affiliate link in the Affiliate Summit image because she wrote this post. I for one would love to see this idea that great content doesn’t deserve affiliate links be put to rest. Everyone knows links are one good reason to write excellent content!