Affiliate Marketing Part 2: Making Your Product Sell

Affiliate marketing part 2

Welcome back the crash course on affiliate marketing. Just in case you forgot already, we talked about picking the right affiliate product to market on you blog. Hopefully the advice has helped you find the perfect product that will one day make you some money.

But choosing the right product to promote is only half the battle. Things get a little more tricker now as it’s time to start the hard work: marketing that product. An affiliate link is not something that goes viral around the Internet, or promotes itself (but that would be cool if it could). It’s something that needs constant promotion and your attention.

The thing is, it’s not always the smartest thing to use your traditional forms of marketing: blog comments and forum posting to be exact. An affiliate link is something you want to get out there, but not too far from your own blog or personal brand.

The content that has your affiliate links in it is what you want to promote more on other people’s blogs, so be sure to leave a link to that article in a blog comment, or in your forum signature. Not an affiliate link. Save them for your blog.

What you need to convince a reader to do

The best way to market an affiliate product is through the element of persuasion. Persuasion is your most powerful tool as an affiliate marketer, and it is nearly impossible to sell too many people on a product if you don’t persuade them to do so.

In whatever way you decide to convince people that they to buy your product, work on accomplishing these things in order to see best results:

  • Make them feel like they’re making an investment, not a commitment.
    When you buy something, do you feel like you’re making an investment or a commitment? When you buy a book, or even food – which is it? They are both something of value, you made an investment on them so you can gain something from them. Trying to convince someone to buy something just because they should feel committed to do so is not very effective or convincing.
  • Tell them they need the product NOW, and why:
    You basically want people to think “Oh wow, if I don’t buy this now, I may not achieve my goals or dreams.” Maybe that’s too bold of a statement, but the point is you want people to think that they need whatever it is you’re selling right this moment or they will regret it later.
  • Make them feel like they’re missing out if they don’t buy now:Statements like “Everyone is doing it” or “Join the thousands of others who…” aren’t cheesy ways of marketing things, they’re persuasive forms of text that work. Convince someone that they need to be part of this “movement” and purchase a product that will truly benefit them.
  • Prove to them that it has worked for you, or somebody else:
    Testimonials, feedback and success stories are all extremely bulletproof ways of doing this. People want to be rest assured that if they are making this investment in a product, that it has worked for not just you, but others.

Once you can start to get a feel of how you should market to your audience, it’s time to get the feel of actually doing something; of marketing. Like I said before, it is probably best you keep a lot of the affiliate marketing you do within the own limits of your blog and personal brands (like Twitter).

This way, you don’t seem like someone who is only interested in making money. And if you remember correctly from day 2, never give off the appearance that you only want to make money.

What Smart Affiliate Marketer’s do to Promote their Products

There are at least three solid platforms to market your affiliate products on. The great thing about these platforms is that they are all yours. You have been working on them for as long as you can remember (maybe with the exception of the last one), which leaves you in perfect position to utilize them in any way you want.

1. Your blog

Didn’t see this one coming, did you? Your blog should (when it’s ready) be the biggest stage for your affiliate links. That is where all parts of your community will end up, and that’s where the most traffic is going to out of the 3 sources in this list.

There are multiple ways in which you can use your blog to promote affiliate products.

  1. Blog articles
    It is not uncommon at all to find an affiliate product and write about it on your blog. Usually, writing completely honest reviews about the product is how many bloggers get their affiliate links in their articles.
  2. Post footer
    You know that place at the end of your article? Well, they are good places for placing these affiliate links. If you can do it in a natural way where it doesn’t interfere with the content in there already (and follows the basic principles of the “no-ads approach“), then you can see some serious results.
  3. Blog footer
    What I recommend any blogger to do regardless of blog age is to add a stream of links into the bottom of their footer that list all of the services you use to power your blog. Link to where you bought your theme, where you get your web hosting from. Affiliate links in the footer are one of the only exceptions to the “no-ads policy” as they integrate in a natural way (see example of ours below).
  4. A “sneeze page”
    Darren Rowse’s idea of a sneeze page is to create a page filled with your best blog posts into one, easy to navigate section (check out the sneeze page of From Planning to Earning). Why not take that exact concept and apply it to affiliate links? We did here, and it made an incredible resources to the part of this guide.

I would stop there. When it comes to affiliate marketing on your blog, you don’t want to go over the top. You always want to put the best content in the most noticeable places of your blog, and your affiliate links will want to compete for those positions. Limit yourself, and you will have earned anything you sell from your blog.

Twitter Marketing E-Book

Need more listeners on Twitter? This eBook explains how to create an audience that listens to your tweets, which is perfect for an affiliate marketer.

2. Twitter & Facebook

Use Twitter and Facebook to promote your products. These are the personal brands I mentioned above, and these are also the places where often a huge part of your community hangs around. So, get a good product in their faces.

But not too much. You rarely want to use these mediums for too hard of an affiliate marketing campaign. Instead, send out a link that has a post with some of your own affiliate links to your followers on Twitter or friends on Facebook.

Or go commando, and promote your product and share the affiliate link straight up to your followers. But, don’t do that too often and don’t make it sound like spam (and always use a URL shortener to cloak your URL’s!).

Always make sure that any tweets you send out with a straight affiliate link in it, you can effectively pitch it so it convinces people in one of the 4 ways I talked about in the beginning of this article. You will be limited on space, so you will have to get creative. But, the more creative you get, the more clicks you will receive.

3. Your List

Two days ago, I said that one of the only ways lists make money is through affiliate marketing. And that’s why the two work together so well: because it is hard for one to work effectively without the other.

When you don’t have a list to promote products in, you don’t have a very strong way of directly communicating with other people and saying “Hey, check out this great product I found.” Yes, your blog and your social network sites are personal, but an email goes directly to a person.

Just because you have a list doesn’t mean all you promote are affiliate products. In fact, you want to promote them as little as possible (in other words, send out more content than affiliate emails), but when you do promote them – you do it big.

Final thoughts on Affiliate Marketing

Affiliate marketing can be a tough concept to understand, but it is one of the ways that top bloggers like Darren Rowse and Brian Clark have achieved six-figure incomes online. Hopefully you have learned that there is in fact much more to affiliate marketing than just picking a product and promoting it randomly.

It’s something that involves strategy, persuasion and most of all (like anything else) – patience. Patience is vital to anything you do online, especially when it comes to the next money making tactic in this course: creating and selling your own products.

Let’s Sell a Product of our own
Your own product is where the best, and some would even say, easiest way to make money from your blog. As someone who has a successful product of their own, I can back that statement up. And I’ll prove it, as the next two days are all about creating and selling your own products! See you then.