Affiliate Marketing is the king of marketing for the 21st century. Affiliate marketing is a godsend for those marketers that want to work selling stuff but don’t have the means or the will to carry an inventory of physical or digital products.
There are many ways to work as an affiliate marketer. In the same way, there are a lot of different types of content used to reach your target customers promoting the products of others.
Affiliate marketers are called publishers in the affiliate marketing community. An AM doesn’t sell anything, she or he just promotes the products that are of interest for his or her visitors.
In some phrases of the content that promotes the product or service the publisher inserts links to the merchant’s website.
If the customer follows the link and ends up purchasing a product or service on the merchant’s website, then the publisher gets a commission.
By promoting stuff to visitors and providing links to the merchant website you are selling, but in an indirect way. This, for regular affiliate marketing.
Then there is white label affiliate marketing. In white label affiliate marketing, the merchant furnishes the publisher with a stock of products and authorizes the publisher to sell the products in her or his website without the need to send the customer outside of it.
Affiliate marketing is not just about products, digital selling techniques, and content to promote the products. There’s a technological side to this form of marketing that makes use of a lot of different software aids, like:
Autoresponders automate the customer acquisition process by initiating a scheme after a lead opts-in to the affiliate marketer’s email list.
When a lead opts-in, the autoresponder does a few things:
Sometimes the merchant (seller) provides the publisher (promoter) with a way to create advertisements.
The merchant’s system to generate advertisements may or may not have a level of customization that helps the publisher make the ad gel with the rest of the brand media.
There are a lot of metrics that can be tracked when conducting affiliate marketing. Like:
These three are the most basic ones, but there are dozens of others.
Reports are one of the easiest business processes to automate. It’s unwise not to take advantage of reporting.
Tracking and measuring solutions that give easy ways to generate and deliver reports out of the box should be given priority over those that don’t have this feature, or that need additional work to set the reports up.
When a publisher owns a content site with hundreds of pages and thousands of affiliate links, managing the links can’t be done manually anymore.
A situation like the one described in the above paragraph requires affiliate links solutions. These can be improvements for the website software or even off-site distributed web apps.
Using artificial intelligence for affiliate marketing is pretty much still in its infancy. Applications of AI for affiliate marketing can manage:
All the channels that social media provide to users can be leveraged to promote affiliate products on those sites.
Maybe to directly send customers from a social media post to the merchant’s website is not the correct way to do affiliate marketing.
Done the right way, publishers share quality content on social media that readers can click, and takes them to the publisher’s website.
Once on the website, the user reads the content. Said content has several affiliate links. These three steps approach primes the lead for buying and has more chances than directly sharing affiliate links without value content by the publisher to back them up.
In the case of white label affiliate marketing, when the publisher wants not just to promote a product but also keep inventory and sell the affiliate products of others without sending the visitor to another website, an e-commerce solution is a must.
The affiliate program linkage must interface with an e-commerce solution for the publisher to have hard proof to show the merchant or to notify the merchant each time a customer buys an affiliate product in the publisher’s site.
E-commerce apps come in handy sometimes to organize products when conducting traditional affiliate marketing. They are useful when the publisher’s site offers hundreds of affiliate products and organizing them just by content categories and website sections becomes impractical.
Those affiliate marketers that care about building a relationship with their readers should take advantage of a funnel system to keep the leads interested.
A sales funnel has many purposes, some examples:
Many more applications, but basically the ones listed above.
The deeper the customer in the conversion process, the narrower the funnel gets. This is because just a percentage of the leads one captures are going to convert. In turn, not all those that convert will convert again and again when cross-selling and up-selling to them.