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Does Your Affiliate Marketing Strategy Suck?

by Steve Scott | Join Him On Facebook

Bad Affiliate Marketing StrategyAs you know, I talk a lot about affiliate marketing on this blog.  It’s how I make the bulk of my income – So I know it’s a profitable business model. 

Unfortunately some people aren’t successful when they try it.  In this guest post, Jeevan shows how a bad affiliate marketing strategy might be holding you back…

Do you know why people like affiliate marketing? Because it is one of the best ways to make money through Internet.

Affiliate marketing was once the easiest way to make money online. But, things have changed now. If you really want to succeed today, you have to work (there is no easy way!)

With more people competing, with more people wanting to make money in less than a(n) hour. It is really hard. But, fear not. There is a good news to everyone who is starting out with affiliate marketing.

What you need to do is come up with a good strategy or plan that works. In this blog post, we are going to talk about coming up with this plan and how you can get ahead (and make some cash online).

Realize this:

You can’t make money by pushing a button! If you want to make money, then you have to work. Then, you have to invest time and money. Just don’t expect to make money by buying one of those “push button money making softwares”. There is more to affiliate marketing than that.

Hard Core Researching – What’s your Strategy?

Do you have a strategy? To succeed in affiliate marketing, you need to have a strategy that works. What you need to do is outline your ideas, read various books and articles about affiliate marketing, take the best ideas out of them and apply it to your own strategy. Refine your readings, find out the best techniques, improve them if necessary, apply them to your strategy.

So, how can you come up with good ideas? Through research. Research helps you to discriminate between the strategies that work with those that aren’t worth a penny.

The ones who want to make money (and who don’t really want to do the work) makes money by tricking people. They make products (that aren’t actually worth anything, especially in today’s market) and make money by selling them. Coming up with good ideas is just the first part of it, you also need to do some experimentation to refine out the ideas and find the best ones.

Steps you need to take:

1. Take a piece of paper and write down what you know about affiliate marketing

2. Put the paper aside and do your research.

3. Find out the big guys in Affiliate marketing, read their articles and tips.

4. Write down what you learned from them (note down the tips).

5. Refine the ideas (find out which of them can be experimented with).

6. Experiment and find out what works out for you

7. Add them to your strategy. Don’t forget to add your own twist to the technique.

Experiment your Strategies

Once you have developed several clear strategies in your mind, experiment with them. For instance, you could try split testing your email titles, message, intros etc. See which one works out best for your subscribers.

You could also try out giving freebies to your subscribers (this could help you to keep the open rates up and above). You should experiment with every little piece of your strategy. Even a slight change can bring a huge difference in the outcome.

Let me give you an example:

Let’s say you have a blog and you make money by marketing through emails. Let’s also say you are not focusing on the number of subscribers; rather on a list of people who are really willing to pay for the products you recommend. Let’s also imagine that you are using a popup software to increase your subscriber count.

Now, you could try optimizing your popup time delay so that it only captures people who really like your content. For instance, you could set the popup for 15-30 seconds (the people that are in this time slot have already told you that they are interested in your content). And you could capture those leads and convert them into buyers.

There are plenty of ways through which you can make money online. And there are millions of changes that you can make to increase your revenue through affiliate marketing.

What else do I need to do?

Now, if you already have a good strategy, then there are some things that you can do to improve your affiliate marketing commissions.

  • When it comes to writing reviews, don’t make them boring. Instead make those review posts interesting and entertaining to read. For instance, you could add examples and analogies to make it more interesting. You need to make “them” read your post. While you are at it, use call to action and several persuasive techniques to make them to buy the product.
  • Be honest. Write honest reviews. Your readers will truly appreciate it.
  • Add too little links to your Review post. This technique works out perfectly. You know, human mind is not motivated to take action by something that is in excess. We are motivated by the limited resources. Think about it, people like Diamonds and all those minerals that aren’t “common”. When it comes to review posts, add one or two links (add them towards the end of the post).
  • Get special offer for your site readers only. You need to make your visitors feel that you consider them as important and special people. People tend to buy more when they feel that you consider them as special.
  • Give them what they want. Add a poll to your site. Ask you site readers what they expect from your reviews (what product offers). Add different categories as answer (like electronics). Start recommending products from best answers.

So, are you in?

As I mentioned earlier, you still have a big chance. A chance that will help you to get ahead. And you don’t need the big gurus helping you. You can do it, all by yourself. You just need to believe in your abilities. Make a strategy. Experiment with it. Tweak it. Develop a plan (schedule). Work. Focus. And Achieve Success. Just do it.

Author Bio:  Hey, My name is Jeevan Jacob John. I am young blogger who likes to share tips and tricks on building a successful blog. I try my best to come up with new analogies and perspectives to make it easier for others to understand. You can find me at my hub -www.Techpupil.com

Take Action. Get Results.




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{ 40 comments… read them below or add one }

Cristina Ansbjerg

Hi Jeevan,

this is a great post for people who feel stuck in their strategy. Finding the right strategy for one probably requires to tweak once and again what others have proved that works for them until it fits you.

Cristina

Reply

Jeevanjacobjohn

Hey Cristina,

First off, thank you for the comment!

Yeah, finding a strategy requires you to do some work. You need to come up with your own theories and test it out. Also incorporate others techniques to your own.

Reply

Mark @ TheBitBot SEM Blog

I have found that everyone’s plan/strategy is different because we all walk a slightly different path.

THE KEY, I have found is, learning how to drive traffic, first and foremost and then…split testing.

Learn to do these two things and you will succeed. This is how I run my operation, at least.

Thanks Steve…as usual…:)

Mark

Reply

Steve Scott

Mark,

I agree! measuring results and acting accordingly is essential with just about EVERY part of an internet business. From traffic to quality of posts to…well like I said…everything.

-S

Reply

Jeevanjacobjohn

Hey Mark,

I agree with you, Mark.

If you want to succeed, you have to experiment. What I find is that most people are ‘afraid’ to experiment and come up with their own strategies. They need to overcome their fear and do what they have to do. Only then, will they able to succeed. Thank you for the comment!

Reply

Murray

What I aim for, in my affiliate marketing, falls along the majority of this post. The only time I start to promote a product is after I’ve implemented it in my online businesses and projects. The reason I do this is so that I can give an accurate review of a product in a real-world environment rather than just writing a review based on bullet points.

Adding a real story to the review, in my mind, is the best way to go. After that, you can also easily write tutorials because you’ve been using the information for quite some time.

Reply

Jeevanjacobjohn

Hey Murray,

I agree with what you said.

People want honest reviews. And when you give it to them. They will appreciate it. Affiliate marketers should aim to write honest reviews that reflect their own experience with the product. Experience makes each review an interesting (and a unique one).

Thank you for stopping by!

Reply

Ana @ CommentLuv

Yes, my affiliate marketing strategy definitely sucks, but I just don’t have enough time to make it better! Sounds pretty funny – not enough time to actually make money… Only a fellow blogger can understand that. LOL

Ana

PS Saw that you stopped by my new CommentLuv enabled blog list, Steve – thanks!

Reply

Jeevanjacobjohn

Hey Ana,

Thank you for the comment!

I can see why you really don’t have time for that. As a reader of your site, I can tell that you invest a lot of time into writing your posts. For an active blogger, it is very much hard to keep up with all this stuff.

Anyway, thank you for stopping by! Appreciate it.

Reply

Ryan Biddulph

Hi Jeevan and Steve,

Super actionable tips here.

Experiment. Like crazy. Keep tweaking, testing and measuring. Stick with what works. Simple. We add complexity to this formula by: never tweaking, never testing and never measuring anything.

Making money with affiliate marketing – or many other online ventures – is a matter of doing your due diligence, putting your newfound knowledge into action IMMEDIATELY. Get your street smarts.

Thanks for sharing your insight!

RB

Reply

Steve Scott

Ryan,

Of course you nailed all the essential aspects. I love what you added about experimentation. I think this is key.

Try stuff see if it works for YOU. ANd keep the stuff that works and dmup the crap that doesn’t.

ONe important thing is that everything people say (even if 100% true) is still just a guideline.

What works “so-so” for me might work like gangbusters for someone in a different niche, with different contacts and a different personality.

Keep an open mind and experiment!

-Steve

Reply

Jeevanjacobjohn

Hey Ryan,

Thanks!

You are absolutely right about the experimentation, Ryan. After all, everything that we have accomplished so far (As humans and as marketers/bloggers), can be attributed to experimentation.

There is also one more thing I would like to mention here: Taking action in the online world will surely increase our confidence and help us to make better decisions (and take actions) without fear!

Reply

Priya @ Goa Beaches

Hi Jeevan,

Really interesting ideas for affiliate marketing. If you want to be a successful affiliate marketer then you have to invest your time, no doubt about it. I liked you point to arrange a poll and ask your readers which products they like most and what changes can be done make your site much appealing and so on. This will certainly help you a lot.

Reply

Jeevanjacobjohn

Hi Priya,

Thank you!

I am glad that you like it. I agree. If you want to be successful, then you will have to invest something into it (Whether its time or money).

Thank you for the comment!

Reply

Tessa

Well said Jeevan. Many affiliate marketers just start up their process by skipping the research. Along with research it requires lot of dedication and hard work to success.

Reply

Jeevanjacobjohn

Hey Tessa,

Thank you!

Yes, I agree. With research and experimentation (along with patience, determination and hard work), anyone can succeed in affiliate marketing!

Thank you for the comment!

Reply

Barry Wheeler@Blogging Tips

I’m not sure if it sucks, but it’s about 2 days old! :)

Just getting into this aspect of the IM world. I have so much to learn, but very excited about the potential.

Reply

Steve Scott

Barry,

I wouldn’t say “suck” then. We all have to start somewhere.

IN fact starting at zero is better. Hopefully you are not lead astray by the BS.

It is better in some ways to know nothing but have an open mind than to -think- you know everything and have you head up your butt.

Good Luck man!

-Steve

Reply

Jeevanjacobjohn

Good luck, Barry!

There is of course a lot of potential with IM. Research and Experiment. And be patient. It will take some time.

Thank you for stopping by!

Reply

sam

Great tips. The biggest mistake I was making was creating shallow, low quality affiliate sites (yes, I admit it). Greed got the better of me but then I realized Google wasn’t stupid and I just couldn’t rank. Since then I’ve started making deeper, much higher-quality stuff and it is slowly starting to pay off. The tips you mention are essential, particularly making posts interesting… there’s nothing worse than dreary writing

Reply

Steve Scott

Many marketers have made missteps. (I will be the first one to say I have done quite a few) the important thing is that you realize the importance of quality now.

Good Luck Sam!

Reply

Jeevanjacobjohn

Thank you, Sam!

The best thing that you can ever do is to realize what you are doing wrong and correct it. And you did that. Anyways, good luck with your ventures. I wish you all the best.

Thank you for the comment!

Reply

Ketan

Very good points made.

I am at the best intermediate marketeer, and I agree absolutely, that your sweat and blood goes into IM. There sure is no push button strategy. Even BUM marketing is so competitive that it just creates spam, not revenue. The key to combat competition is an original strategy. Alas, there can only be so many of them!

K.

Reply

Steve Scott

Ketan,

You got it! Of course we all want to do whatever we can to get OUR material above our competition. But all the junk is just that: junk. It does nothing for you and can in fact hinder you with the new algorithm and the ding it could give to your reputation.

Thanks for dropping by and commenting.

Reply

Jeevanjacobjohn

Hey Ketan,

Thanks for agreeing!

Yes, there is nothing in this world that is easy to do (in terms of making money). Even if you are talking about scamming people, you really need to do some work (but, I wouldn’t recommend anyone doing that :D). With dedication, determination and patience (along with an original strategy), you will sure succeed in IM.

Thank you for the comment!

Reply

Pam@How to Get Out of Debt

I myself am new to Blogging and Affiliate Marketing. Thank you so much for outlining the tasks in your article. If someone can’t follow those instructions they’ll never make it in the business. I can’t wait to delve deeper into the subjects.

Reply

Steve Scott

Thanks Pam,

You are right. At their core these seem like pretty simple ways. However a lot of people try to ignore this looking for a quick and easy route…to their own detriment.

Reply

Pam@How to Get Out of Debt

Scott,
I’ve been telling everyone I know about your site. I’ve even bookmarked pages so that I can go back and revisit them when I feel myself start to stray.

Please keep the tips coming!

Reply

Jeevanjacobjohn

Thank you, Pam!

If you are new to both, Steve’s site is one of the best resources you can find. Steve gives out some awesome tips (actionable tips!) that you can use to help your own strategy/blog.

Thank you for stopping by!

Reply

Marion

I’m new in affiliate marketing and still in learning process. I research and read a lot of articles and ebooks..Sticking to one particular niche can be difficult sometimes, especially if you’re a jack-of-all-trades about your passions and are good at a few things,.thanks for sharing your insights.

Reply

Steve Scott

I understand the urge to go chasing after the bright and shinies on the horizon, but it is an urge we need to resist.

It really takes a long time to create an affiliate marketing program that works. Most people do not spend enough time and effort at it…then wonder why nothing works for them.

Reply

Jeevanjacobjohn

Hey Marion,

I wish you all the best with your internet career. Yes, read a lot of information (but, don’t forget to apply those techniques to your own strategy). Play with your theories. Find the best techniques. Use them!

Thank you for the comment!

Reply

Curt@How To Get In Shape Fast

Steve,
Love the site man! One day I’m gonna read every one of your posts in a row. This blog was recommended to me by a guy who is making bank in IM, when I asked him for what I should read, so I knew it would be good…

Jeevan,
Good points about how you don’t need Guru products or any push button crap… I’ve gotten good *free* info from the gurus, but these CB products that promise to make you money with a few clicks are hogwash, the only thing good about them is that they are marketed well, so you can learn from how the big guys “sell the sizzle” not the steak, because the steak that they are selling is grade D horse meat!
LOL

Keep up the good work :)

Reply

Steve Scott

Thanks Curt! Glad you liked it and thank -whomever- for leading you to me. Hope to see you here again.

One recommendation, though, is get a gravatar. When commenting people will take you a lot more seriously with one. Most “spammers” also do not have a gravatar since they spam multiple email addresses. In case you do not know how to get one here is a great article showing the steps by a guy who reads this site: http://findmyblogway.com/2011/09/02/losing-out-without-gravatar/

Good Luck to you Curt

Reply

Duy Nguyen

I agree that having a plan of attack is important in affiliate marketing. But to develop it to some acceptable levels requires time and practice. There is no way for a newbie to have the plan right away when he even don’t know how stuff works. So take it step by step is the key.

Also, the “writing reviews” section is very good. You’ve pointed out important things that should be done in a good review. I just want to ask about the length of the review. There are people who say that a short review with appealing call to actions through out the review work best. While other say that providing as much information (about 1000 words or more) and one or two call to actions at the end is the way to go.

What is your opinion? And thanks for the post!

Duy.

Reply

Terje Sannarnes@entrepreneur

From my point of view that main task of an affiliate marketer is to understand customers. You should know who your customers are and try to realize what products they may need. Then just select the best affiliate programs, drive targeted traffic to a website and increase its revenue.

Reply

Diego

Great article! I like to find people who agree on the fact that, to build a successful marketing strategy, you have to put in some legwork! I was so tired of seeing “magic push button systems” that I wrote something similar on my blog.
Don’t copy, but learn, review and re-think!

Reply

Darren @ Bootcamp Exercises

I think my biggest downfall is that I keep changing my strategy and don’t just stick with it. If it doesn’t work right away I move on. I should give my strategies more time and monitor them better.

Reply

Steve Scott

Darren,

Absolutely. Nothing in this business is quick AND not every strategy will work as well in every niche. It takes a little research followed by careful monitoring and time. … But you know that…you just have to do it! Good luck man!

Reply

Ana

I agree that hard work cannot be avoided in order to succeed whatever you choose to be your calling. I like the systematization of the approach, and I believe that a person should also have the will power to stick to the plans that they’ve made.

This may seem like a common thing, but I strongly believe that it’s a bigger issue than it seems at first glance.

Reply

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