In many ways, marketing and selling an affiliate offer is similar to marketing and selling your own product or service.
You have to believe in what you’re selling. You have to be dedicated to serving your customer with your offer. You have to be tenacious and patient about doing all the research, planning, and execution that goes into making an offer. And you have to be willing to give it the time and energy it requires.
But there are some different ways you can promote an affiliate offer that are a little bit different than what you might think of when you’re promoting a product or service of your own.
Before you start planning out your next affiliate promotion, be sure to grab my Affiliate Program Tracker sheet, which will help you research, compare, and organize your affiliate relationships — click here to get it now.
1. Write an honest review
When you’re marketing a product or service produced by someone else, you have a unique tool at your disposal: a review! You can create a review that you will post to your blog or a video to share on YouTube.
I took a course in 2013; the following year, I decided to become an affiliate, and I wrote an honest review of the course and posted the article to my blog. Every time the course launches now (twice a year since 2014) my post comes up in organic search results, and earn a few thousand dollars in affiliate commissions!
When creating a review post, remember: be honest. Fake reviews don’t help anyone. Include the pros and the cons — people are much more likely to believe your testimonial when you do. And be sure to share how you personally benefited from the product or service.
Don’t forget: You must disclose your status as an affiliate in these sorts of posts. It’s the law!
2. Create a walkthrough or tutorial
Another great way to market an affiliate product or service is to create a post or video that shows people how to use it.
This works especially well for a physical product, when you can demonstrate how to use it, or a service that needs to be set up.
Pat Flynn, of Smart Passive Income, makes hundreds of thousands of dollars a year as an affiliate for BlueHost website hosting by creating simple tutorials for how to set up a WordPress site on BlueHost.
If you create a walkthrough or tutorial, be sure to keep it up to date. I even recommend putting “Last updated on” and the date at the top, so that people can easily see that the information is current.
3. Mention products in your posts
If you follow any food, lifestyle, fashion, or mommy bloggers, you’ve probably seen them use this tactic. They will write a post about a topic and include links to their affiliate products in the post.
A food blogger might share a recipe for ice cream and include an affiliate link to her favorite ice cream maker on Amazon.
This is a good way to include lower-ticket affiliate products in your regular marketing efforts. This is especially effective when you can regularly mention the product, show yourself using it, or demonstrate how it makes things easier.
4. Podcast promotions
If you have a podcast, you can set up your shows to help share your affiliate promotions. You might interview the creator of the product or service or interview people who have used and benefited from it. You might also set up the affiliate as a “sponsor” of your show, including a brief advertisement for the product or service as part of each episode.
You can really get creative with this! Several years ago, Adrienne Dorison created an entirely new podcast that she called the Pop-Up Podcast to support an affiliate promotion. All of the episodes were aimed at getting listeners to take an action — namely, to join a Facebook group. Then Adrienne made the affiliate offer inside the Facebook group to an audience of very warm leads who were ready to buy.
5. Share on social media
It’s a great idea to share your affiliate promotions on all your social media channels. Talk about how you use the product or service; share a behind-the-scenes look at how everything works. Even just artful photos of you using a product can drive traffic to your affiliate link.
But remember to keep everything authentic and balanced. Don’t spam your followers or groups you belong to. Remember all those posts in groups a while back offering cheap (knock off) Ray Bans? You don’t want to be like them! Follow the rules of any group you belong to and be upfront about your affiliate status when sharing a link or offer.
6. Email your list
Don’t forget about email! Every time you create a review, a walkthrough, a tutorial, a behind-the-scenes video, or a podcast episode to market an affiliate promotion, be sure to send an email to your list about it, too.
Remember: When you can authentically and enthusiastically recommend something that will help your customers achieve their goals, they will be happy to hear about it! Don’t worry about “bothering” them or that you will drive people away by sharing an affiliate offer. As long as you’re being honest and helpful, your audience will appreciate the information.
7. Build your own sales funnel
This is a more advanced tactic, but you can create an online sales funnel for someone else’s product or service the same way you would your own. Don’t rely on the other person’s marketing campaign to do the work for you; the more you warm up your own customers before they follow your affiliate link, the more likely they are to buy.
You could create your own lead magnet, write and send a series of sales emails, and make the offer.
This is probably the best way to market higher ticket or recurring offers — like a course that launches several times a year. If you stand to make several hundred or several thousand dollars off each sale, it’s worth putting in the extra effort to help nurture those customers.
I hope you’re brimming with ideas for your next affiliate promotion, but before you dive in, be sure to download my Affiliate Program Tracker sheet; it will help you research, choose, and organize all your affiliate promotions so that you can handle them all like a pro! It’s normally only available inside the Boost Revenue With Affiliate Sales Destination Guide inside Business Class, but it’s yours for free right now! Click here to grab it.