Affiliate marketing is a fantastic business model for so many reasons – but if you’ve ever tried to make money as an affiliate you’ll know it’s nowhere near as easy as the experts claim.As someone that has earned an income as an affiliate through various techniques for over a ten years, I thought it might be useful to examine some of the more successful business models.
If you’re keen to become a successful affiliate marketer – but you’re not yet “bringing home the bacon” then consider implementing one or more of these “proven” business models that make affiliate marketing as simple and profitable as possible.
Email marketing is arguably the most powerful form of affiliate marketing around. If you successfully build a subscriber list comprising thousands of people interested in what you have to say then earning money as an affiliate can be as simple as sending an email.
For best results try to “mix up” your email messages – sending both marketing messages *and* a variety of truly useful content. Doing so will help you build rapport with your subscribers, reduce unsubscribes and maintain an enviable open rate.
The question of how to actually get those subscribers in the first place has been one of the most popular questions among marketers for years. Personally I would recommend either building a blog to drive organic visitors from the search engines and social media, then advertise your mailing list to these prospects.
Alternatively, for faster (but more expensive) results, try building a squeeze page and drive paid traffic to it through media buys, pay-per-click and solo ad buys.
Review sites aim to capture the attention of a shopper just before they make a purchase. Many of us, if our mind is almost made up, do some simple research online before actually ordering a product. And a review site is set up to intercept that person at that exact tipping point, explain why they should buy and then provide a link to the merchant’s site.
The process of building review sites is pretty simple because there are so many products it’s still reasonably simple to find keywords you can dominate. And because you’re attracting “buyer traffic” typically conversion rates are very high indeed – meaning you won’t need too much traffic to your review site to make a handsome profit.
However be aware that as you’re trying to attract buyers just before they make a purchase, it’s essential that you build a professional-looking site that builds trust in your recommendations. Take the extra time to write detailed, useful and balanaced reviews and install a professional review theme to show off your contet to it’s best.
Viral Social Media
There are Facebook page owners with tens of thousands of fans, and many of them make a full-time living without any need for search engine optimization or serious content creation. Instead, they focus on creating or sharing “viral” content – content that gets shared with your fan’s other friends.
In this way you’re able to constantly grow your readership while gently recommending products as an affiliate in-between the other content. In essence, think of social media as just like email marketing – but with the added bonus that your “list” will grow by itself if you’re sharing the right kinds of content.
The final business model worthy of mention is also potentially the most profitable. That said, it’s also the most expensive (by far) and can take a lot of testing before you really get the sort of return you’re hoping for. However once you find a successful campaign, they can often be scaled up rapidly for maximum profitability. Just be aware that you may need to invest several hundred to several thousand dollars before you hit “pay dirt”.
So what it this business model? Quite simply you pay for traffic and send it to offers that are already converting strongly. Match the right keywords at the right price to the right offer and you can rapidly clock up sales. Get it wrong and you can lose a lot of money.
So while one can be successful at it, I would encourage you to try some of the other methods first to generate some cashflow, and if the PPC model interests you then reinvest some of your profits once you have them coming in on a regular basis.
Karen Smith is passionate about affiliate marketing and showing others how to earn a living from home.