Affiliate Marketing is a relatively newer concept. People are keen to understand it in detail. The following article is designed to give you a clearer idea on what Affiliate Marketing is. We shall cover key points like -
I. What exactly is Affiliate Marketing
ii. Doing Market Research and finding the right niche
iii. Building your online presence
iv. Generating Leads and bringing in the Traffic
v. Building your List
vi. Optimizing to maximize profits
From the Author
I have always emphasized the importance of a strong online presence. The Internet Marketing opportunities have helped people get rid of the 9-5 lifestyle and help them earn double the income, but out dating algorithms make it difficult for such marketers to sustain in the stiff competition. It is essential to continuously learn, unlearn and re-learn.
In the internet marketing world, never forget the 80-20 rule. You can sell products, advertisement spaces, and create other services, but Affiliate Marketing will help you earn 80% of your income with 20% of your time, money and efforts.
Before we go any further, it is essential to learn three things
a. Making a website is easy, but it doesn’t work unless it attracts traffic
b. Like every other business, Affiliate Marketing too requires an initial investment but lesser infusion as compared to other businesses.
c. Interaction with people and experts is essential.
I. What exactly is Affiliate Marketing
It is a great business model suited well for start-ups. This part covers essentials like:
a. How come Affiliate Marketers make so much money?
b. Why should one get into Affiliate Marketing?
c. Debunking the myths associated with Affiliate Marketing
ii. Planning & Market Research
a. Choosing the right niche: Doing stringent market research will help identify the right target audience. This step is part of the per-planning process and one should make sure that they don’t falter in this step as it can have long-term consequences.
b. Creating a Personal Brand Image: Most entrepreneurs have to work within the constraint matrix of time, money and ideas. It is essential to educate and then identify the right customers to create a niche. Generating leads and their contact information to deliver what is valuable to them and in return we earn.
c. Selecting a Geographical/Demo-graphical Niche:You have to identify if you wish to sell your product or service within a particular geographical area or provide it across geographies, but to a particular type of audience who you think might need the product or service.
d. Keyword Research: The SEO factor is critical for your website to show up in the search results and hence selecting the right keywords is extremely critical. There are quite a few free and paid keyword tools available online. There are three types of keywords – Commercial, Products and Informational.
e. Creating the ‘Ideal Customer’s’ profile: Identify the ideal customer and the reasons they should buy from you. Also highlight the reasons why they shouldn’t buy from you.
iii. Building Your Presence: This step is akin to creating a virtual office; a meeting place for us to liaise with potential customers. Important aspects at this stage include – Building an authority website, creating good content, Blogging, Video Logging, Forum Marketing etc. One can add on to this by also having a strong presence on social media platforms.
iv. Bringing in the Traffic: Once the stage is set, it is imperative to bring in the audience. To do so in the online world, people make use of tools like:
a. Search Engine Optimization
b. Link Building
c. Pay-per-Click Campaigns
d. Paid Banner Advertisements
e. Banner Exchange Programs
v. Building Customer Relations: The traffic has started coming in, but it is critical that they stay back and for that, we need to give them strong reasons to become our long-term customers. In this part, we shall understand topics like Lead Generation, Email Marketing and the steps for creating a successful email campaign, avoiding spam-filters, selling the products and rolling in the profits.
vi. Maximising Sales: The profits have started coming in, but single transactions alone aren’t enough. So we need to find avenues to make the customer stay. We need to Up-sell, Down-sell or Cross-sell.
vii. Conclusion & Further Guidelines: To understand this stage, it will be great if you could join our mailing list.