What Is Affiliate Marketing? How To Get Started In 2021
Picture this: a workweek spent outside of an office, no predetermined schedule, and no commute. Sounds like a dream? For many, affiliate marketing has made this a reality.
Companies have learned that by offering affiliate marketing programs, they can introduce their products to more and more consumers without spending much on marketing. In turn, affiliate marketers have learned that they can generate monthly income by choosing the best affiliate programs and leveraging their network of influence.
This helpful blog will be guiding you through what exactly affiliate marketing is, and how to easily get started doing it yourself.
What is affiliate marketing?
Affiliate marketing is defined as a performance-based marketing tactic in which a business rewards an individual with a commission for each customer they refer. The individual, called an affiliate, only gets paid when their referral results in a transaction.
Okay… again, but with smaller words…
Put simply, affiliate marketers help connect companies with customers. For every purchase made because of an affiliate, the affiliate receives a predetermined commission.
Think of it as being the middleman between a business and their target audience, without actually being tied to, or employed, by the business itself. This is one of the best features of affiliate marketing.
While typical sales reps only sell products for one company, affiliate marketers can promote products from different companies while earning a commission on all of them.
With most programs, affiliate marketers only introduce consumers to products and services. The affiliate marketer doesn’t develop the product, ship it to the consumer, handle payment, or do anything besides referring the consumer to the product or service.
Affiliate marketing typically involves three parties.
The first is the affiliate, which as discussed is the middle person between businesses and customers. The second is the business whose products are being promoted by the affiliate.
The third is the customer, who is being introduced to the business by the affiliate.
When all three parties are considered, affiliate marketing is beneficial for all involved. The business gains profit from the sale, which the affiliate then earns a portion of through commission, and the customer gets the product they want.
How affiliate marketing programs work
As mentioned, affiliates are paid for each transaction they play a role in. But how exactly does it work, and who can be an affiliate marketer?
Anyone with an internet connection and a network of influence can be an affiliate. Businesses can even join affiliate programs of other businesses and create a beneficial partnership between the two.
To become an affiliate, you’ll first need to join a business’s affiliate marketing program. Once signed up, affiliates then receive some form of a unique ID, or a trackable URL, which is how the affiliate and business keep track of all the customers the affiliate brings in.
Let’s say you have a popular cooking youtube channel that gets over 100,000 views a month. One day, you see an advertisement for a kitchen appliance company’s affiliate program and decide to join.
As the affiliate, you’d tell your viewers to visit the business’s website and purchase their products using your link. If a viewer does so and purchases a product, you’d then receive your affiliate commission.
The three common affiliate marketing program models
Not all affiliate programs are identical—some may require more work on your end than others, but the overall goal is the same. In practice, most affiliate programs tend to fall under three models.
The first one is called pay per sale and is the most common model. Under a pay per sale model, the affiliate is paid only when they themselves are directly responsible for a sale. This ultimately leaves the affiliate with the work of convincing others to visit a site and influencing a sale.
The second is pay per lead. With this model, the affiliate is paid for every lead they generate. Whether it’s having someone start a trial, fill out an online contact form, or begin a purchase, the goal here is to present the business with an interested customer. With pay per lead, both the affiliate and business must do some convincing.
The last is called pay per click. With this model, the affiliate is paid whenever someone clicks on their link, even if no sale or lead is generated. Because this places all the work on the business to convert the sale, this tends to be the rarest of the three.
Now that we know how affiliate marketing programs work, let’s talk about how you can get started.
How to get started affiliate marketing
Alright, so now that we’ve gone over the basics of affiliate marketing, how do you get started? While the core concept of affiliate marketing relies on introducing consumers to different products, doing so blindly and without direction may not produce the results you’re looking for.
Affiliate marketing is pretty straightforward in concept, but there are few things you should decide on before you begin.
First, decide on your niche and audience
A referral goes beyond simply telling someone about a product. In order to facilitate a sale, you must have influence. If you’re an internet personality or blogger, you most likely already have and understand your niche.
If you’re just starting out, consider choosing a niche (or a certain subject to focus on) in order to gain an audience that has similar interests. Whether you focus on finance, personal health, business, or dogs, a niched blog or website helps you gain a more centralized audience with similar interests, which will make selling them products easier.
Deciding on a niche will help you understand the type of audience you need, or which types of people will want to purchase the products you introduce to them.
Next, find your products
To be a successful affiliate marketer, you’ll need to find products that your audience will actually want to buy. Moreso, you’ll have to be more than simply a person trying to sell them something if you expect them to actually purchase something.
If all you do is spam people with links to different websites and products without fostering a relationship, you’ll likely have little to no sales. Furthermore, the more you believe and are familiar with the products that you choose to promote, the easier it will be to convince others to buy.
When it comes to deciding on which products to sell, think about these three components:
- Your audience: will the product be something that they’re interested in?
- Product value and quality: is the product one you’d recommend to a friend?
- Profitability: will you be adequately paid for your work in selling the product?
Finally, promote and sell
While your audience may look towards you for guidance on certain subject matters, they may not be as persuaded when you are attempting to sell them something. In order to have true success, you’ll need to come up with ways of advertising your affiliate products.
Blog posts, social media, and video content are all effective ways to promote any products online. Regardless of the type of content you create, the key is to keep it exciting and genuine. The more excited you are about the product, the easier it will be for your audience to see the value in your product.
There is no one affiliate payout method or model, but usually, affiliates tend to receive a predetermined commission for each sale they influenced. While payouts differ from company to company, you’ll most likely receive commissions on a monthly basis.
Join Practina’s affiliate program
When it comes to affiliate programs, it’s hard to beat being a Practina affiliate. Whether they’re business owners or consumers, Practina affiliates have found financial success connecting others to the power of automated social media marketing.
As mentioned, the easiest way to earn more commissions through affiliate marketing is to provide your audience with products that they actually want and need. Whether they’re business owners or consumers, Practina’s affiliates have found financial success connecting others to the power of automated social media marketing.
Practina simplifies the day-to-day operations of any business by removing the hassle of digital marketing, so it’s no surprise that our affiliates have little trouble signing new businesses up.
If your audience or network of influence is looking to automate social media marketing, run ads in just a few clicks, or connect with new customers instantly, we encourage you to become a Practina affiliate. You’ll receive a commission for each business you refer, and your earning potential is unlimited!
Affiliate marketing is an ideal solution for anyone who wants to have more control over their income by focusing on performance-based revenue options. Working hand and hand with businesses, affiliates are able to achieve a passive income from the comfort of their home without having to come up with their own product or service.
Although the ultimate success of an affiliate comes down to their selling abilities, affiliate marketing can prove to be an effective way to generate additional income when you choose the right products.