Friday, 27 May 2011

Affiliate Marketing...Successfully!

If you're ready to take the plunge, dive  off the deep end and take the plunge into the world of article marketing you have to look at the endeavour seriously. You need to conduct this endeavour as you would any other business - yes, there are few if any overheads, or up front expenses, but if you want to succeed then you need to take it seriously.

If article marketing is to become your only source of income you can forget about the dreams of working from home and beach side holidays and flash cars - for no at least...you'll have time for those things later.

So let's take a look at what you need to do to make sure your first steps are in the right direction and you stay on track.

The first golden rule of any business is to identify the demand. You may have heard the terms already.

"Find a niche and sell, sell, sell"

Finding a niche is one thing but finding a product to advertise is another. Trendy items - Justin Beiber and fare thee well Oprah things etc - will sell like hot cakes one minute and be obsolete the next. By all means chase these markets while they are there...just don't build an empire expecting them to remain.

You are searching for something that people need. You are looking for their problems and finding the answer for them. That is the core essence of an affiliate marketer - matching people to products. 

Don't think for a moment that you will only be advertising one product or even to one market. Times and markets change and while one product will sell at this point in tome, somebody will be along in the morning with a cheaper, faster, fancier solution to your buyer's problems and turn your world upside down.

You also need to set yourself apart from the competition. Establish your name - your brand so to speak. What makes you different from all the other people trying to force products and newsletters and memberships down the buyer's throat?

Do you have freebies? Are you more sincere? More approachable? Better support? Be very tactful when you talk about your competition - explain why you are the one to call on and leave it at that. No back stabbing and bad mouthing of the competition.

Some people would also recommend insuring your home business - if you're starting out, I wouldn't be overly concerned at this point. But keep in mind that you are providing readers with information that will affect the choices they make - if they become injured or something happens, they may just point the finger at you who talked them into it. For this reason, I have always urged you to provide honest and accurate information (as though you were writing an email to a friend). Article writing is a huge responsibility.

You also need to keep in touch with your customers. You can do this several different ways but most affiliate marketers prefer to gather a mailing list - people who subscribe to a newsletter or a six part series of information etc.

By having the contact details of your readers, you can (hopefully) turn them into repeat offenders (you can practice your email marketing and offer them links to your affiliate products hidden amongst useful tips, advice and support.

So how do you get news of your products out there? There are literally dozens of ways to advertise your affiliate links.

Article Writing

Blogging

Monetizing your personal website

Email Marketing. Facebook. Any way you can communicate with people, you can begin matching products with people.

I think by far, article marketing is the best place for beginners to start and I do intend to address the topic one day soon...promise! If you have any experience with HubPages or Squidoo then you have a pretty good idea of what is involved. You write useful, quality (as in readable not world class author quality) and original content that will entice the reader into clicking on your affiliate link and hopefully whip out the credit card when they get there.

But!!

There is a fine art to this. In any case, no matter what or how you choose to advertise there is one little gem of info that you must take note of.

I know I have made this point in the past but it's worth touching on again.

It is NOT your job to sell the product. You do NOT have to justify the price or discuss 
how this wonderful the product is and how it changed you life.

Let the sales page do that.

Your job is to match people to products - find a niche, determine what their problem is, provide them with a solution.

Still confused? I have to confess that I have been running on autopilot recently. Remember way back when in math when the teacher would ask you to explain something how you came to an answer? And you could give her the answer but couldn't tell her how you got it? No? Or was that just me? lol

Anyway, you get to point - it is hard to break it down this info down into bite sized chunks for beginners which is why I'm recommending this little gem of information

Beginner's Guide To Affiliate Marketing

If you are confused and need me to elaborate, you know where to find me (below in the comments box)

Good luck my marketing chums

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