If you’re thinking about getting into affiliate marketing, the first thing you’ll do is to research about it.
Most tutorials and guides will tell you that in order for you to get started with this type of business, you’ll need to set up your own website or blog.
You’ll even be provided with steps on how to avail web hosting, think of a domain name, and set up an account with a website builder.
But did you know that you can actually become an affiliate even if you don’t have a website?
Having a website surely has its perks. It can serve as the home base of your online business. It makes it easier for your target customers to find you. It also helps you establish credibility and expertise in the niche. On top of all these, there are countless ways to promote your affiliate products in your website.
But for some people, building and maintaining a website is tedious, time consuming and stressful. If you feel the same way about it too, then you’d probably want to consider using other methods in place of an affiliate website.
Here are the top proven methods that you can use in your affiliate marketing business should you opt not to have a website.
# 1 – Email
Email has been considered by many as a dead communication channel.
These people make the mistake of thinking that because social media boomed in the recent years, no one is using email anymore.
But this can’t be farther from the truth.
The truth is, email is not dead. It remains a top communication channel particularly for professionals and business owners.
Think about it, what is more professional, direct and straightforward? An email or a Facebook personal message?
Of course, it has to be email.
For online businesses like affiliate marketing, it does wonders in building a following, establishing trust and credibility, generating traffic and sales and many more.
In fact, email marketing is an integral part of any marketing campaign for affiliates. It’s something that they can’t do without.
Now what some affiliates do not know is that email does not only have to serve as supplemental marketing strategy, it can be the primary method for promoting affiliate products.
This is especially useful and practical for those who do not want to build a website and find it tedious to maintain one.
It is also ideal for those who want to save money on things like web hosting, domain name, and so on.
With email, you only have to pay a minimal monthly fee for the email marketing service, and you can use this to generate sales of your affiliate products.
So how do you do this? Here are the steps to follow:
- Build your email list – Set up a landing page and install a pop up opt-in form to collec the email addresses of your visitors. Be sure to offer a valuable lead magnet to encourage more people to sign up to your email list. It’s also a good idea to run a contest on social media and offer an attractive prize that would entice people to join. Make it a requirement for participants to provide their email addresses.
- Choose an email marketing service – Once you have collected email addresses of at least 100 subscribers, you can start using an email marketing platform. Your top options include GetResponse, Aweber, MailChimp, and Constant Contact. Compare these email marketing services including the prices, features and benefits so you can see which one is the best option for you.
- Create email marketing sequence – Create a series of email marketing messages that starts with a verification if the recipient got the link to the lead magnet that you offered. This gives you an excuse to send an email. Next, you have to provide content that will tap into the emotions of the recipient, particularly the struggles and problems that bring them negative emotions. In the next message, this when you can mention your affiliate product, highlighting features and benefits to convince the recipient that it’s a valuable investment.
So basically, that’s it. You can use email for promoting certain affiliate products. Just make sure that you verify if this method is allowed by the affiliate program that you’re using. For example, Amazon does not allow the posting of affiliate links through email.
# 2 – Social Media
Social media is another powerful marketing channel that affiliates use all the time.
Facebook alone now has 2.38 billion active users each month. Twitter, the second largest social media site, has 326 million monthly users.
You can just imagine how broad your audience can be if you make use of the top social media sites like Facebook, Twitter, Google Plus, Pinterest, LinkedIn and Instagram for your affiliate marketing business.
Aside from using social networks to drive traffic to an affiliate site, you can also use social media as primary platform for promoting your affiliate products.
Just make sure that you disclose that you are posting affiliate links as this is required by the Federal Trade Commission. You need to post a disclosure indicating that your post contains affiliate links which you’ll get paid for if people purchase the product using your links. Clarify to your audience that it will not cost them anything so as not to discourage them from making the purchase.
Below, you’ll find the steps on how to use social media for promoting your affiliate products. For this purpose, we’ll use Facebook.
- Create a Facebook page – First, you’ll need a Facebook page. Complete the page by including all the pertinent details about your niche. Think of a name for the page that will be easy for your target audience to remember.
- Write targeted and practical content – Next, write content relevant to your niche and affiliate products. Share these posts on your Facebook page. Make sure that your content contains information, strategies and tips that will help resolve your audience’s problems, and make their lives easier.
- Insert affiliate links in your posts – Insert links to your affiliate product within your content. Do not forget to disclose that you are working as an affiliate, as mentioned earlier.
- Promote your posts using Facebook ads – Boost your valuable content using Facebook paid ads. You will only need to pay $1 each day to reach an audience of 2,000 people. The great thing about Facebook ads is that it is highly targeted and specific. You can set specific demographics to reach the right audience who will be interested in your affiliate products, and will likely buy them.
- Share your posts in related Facebook groups – It’s also a good idea to share your content in Facebook groups that are related to your niche.
- Create your own Facebook group – You also have the option to create your own Facebook group that centers on the solution of the problems of your target audience.
# 3 – Video
Here’s another channel that you can take advantage of if you want to make money with affiliate marketing but you don’t want to put up a website: video.
About 6 billion hours of video are being viewed on YouTube each month. YouTube, the largest video sharing platform online today, also happens to be the second biggest search engine in the world. It now has more than 1 billion users, more than what any cable network in the United States has.
Most affiliates use video and YouTube to drive traffic to their affiliate blog or website.
But it’s also possible to use this platform in place of a website. You can set up your own YouTube channel and use this to promote videos that are related to your niche so you can promote or mention your affiliate products. You can place your affiliate links in the video through annotations or in the text video description.
For example, if you are in the make money niche, and you are creating a video tutorial on how to set up a website using WordPress, you can include an affiliate link to a WordPress theme product like Elegant Themes or ThemeForest, and include the affiliate link in the video description or annotation, also called as the text overlay.
Each time someone clicks the link from these videos and purchases the products you’ve promoted, you get to earn a commission.
There are various types of videos that you can use to earn affiliate profits. Here are some of the most effective forms that you should consider using:
- Product review or product comparison videos – These types of content are some of the best formats to use for affiliate marketing of any kind. If you’d like to promote your affiliate products using YouTube, you can also create this type of video. Research has shown that more than 60 percent of online consumers watch product review videos before making any final purchase decision. Meanwhile, up to 52 percent of online shoppers are more likely to buy a product if it has already been featured in a product review video published on YouTube. As you can see, it’s certainly a good idea to leverage this type of video format to earn great commissions from your YouTube channel.
- How to videos – Aside from product reviews and product comparison posts, many shoppers also check out and watch how to videos and video tutorials. They usually look for videos that provide comprehensive information about how to use a certain product. They want to see each step being done clearly so that they’ll know exactly how to use it after they’ve bought the product. Sometimes, this also helps them in decision making. If a product seems easy and convenient to use, this is a plus point that influences them to purchase the product.
- Best of videos – Although not as effective as product reviews and how to videos in converting viewers into customers, best of videos can also draw attention to your YouTube channel. Also, this is easier to create than how to or product review videos. A product review entails careful analysis and examination of each of the feature and benefit of the product while taking note of its drawbacks as well so as to provide an unbiased content. How to videos on the other hand would require you to use the product yourself, taking video of each of the steps needed to set it up or get started in using it. But with the best of video, you simply have to curate photos or video clips of the top products that you’d want to include in the list. Take note that you don’t have to include only the products that you are affiliated with. In fact, it’d be best if you include also other products that you think that are valuable and effective but you’re not affiliated with so that your audience can see that your true intention is to aid them in the buying process, not to get them to buy a product just so you can earn money. This is a good way of building trust and credibility in the realm of affiliate marketing.
Now we look at how you can generate traffic to your YouTube videos.
Don’t make the mistake of thinking creating the video is the only step that you need to do. You must also work hard enough to generate traffic to it.
A good way to do this is to get your YouTube video to rank high in the Google organic search.
It is imperative that you optimize the video title and description with keywords that you’d want to rank for.
Make use of keyword research tools such as SEMRush or Ahrefs to find out what the right keywords you should target.
Aside from optimizing your videos, you also have to build a large following.
To get more people to subscribe to your channel, you’d want to use strategies similar to those that you use for building an email list.
Having a pop up signup sheet in your landing page is always a good idea. You can also promote your videos on your social media sites and get people to subscribe to your YouTube channel.
Getting more people to turn into subscribers shoudl not be too difficult if you are able to create videos that are highly valuable for them.
# 4 – Ebook
Writing an ebook is another option that deserves a spot on this list.
Many would consider this more challenging than building an email list or promoting affiliate products on social media accounts.
But if you are able to do this right, an ebook can provide you with recurring earnings.
Just make sure that you are able to choose a specific, targeted and in-demand topic that your target audience would actually want to read.
Don’t worry if you’re not gifted with words. You can always hire a freelance writer to do the job for you. Yes, this means money out of your pockets but this can be a good investment to make if you’re able to find a competent writer who can create a high quality ebook for you.
So how do you go about this process?
First, you have to determine the topic that you want to write about. It should be related to your affiliate product and niche.
Next, do your research for the topic you’ve chosen. Make use only of reputable and reliable sources for your research.
Create an outline that will serve as your guide when writing the book. Start with an introduction and then divide the content into several chapters. Each chapter should have a brief introduction.
You can then insert affiliate links within the content of your ebook. Just like with the other formats that you might want to use, you must always think about building trust and credibility.
Never write in favor of your affiliate product just to get people to buy it so you can earn your commission. Tell them the truth about the product. Don’t just highlight the pros but also let your audience knwo about the cons if there are any. This way, people will see that you are after giving them the best quality information that will truly help them out.
After this, design the ebook cover and conver the file into a PDF format.
You should also take the time to proofread your ebook from cover to cover. You don’t want any spelling or grammatical errors to taint your credibility as an expert author in the niche. Make use of online tools like Grammarly or Hemingway App to make sure that your content is free from any mistakes.
As for disseminating the book, You have the option to sell the ebook on publishing sites or better yet, offer it for free through Facebook ads or other social media platforms.
# 5 – Online Communities
The last option in the list is online communities.
If you’ll go for this route, the primary thing that you have to do is to build and join online communities.
You need to create your own consisting of people who belong to your target audience.
At the same time, you have to join existing online communities that have huge followings. Make sure that you only join groups that are related to your niche.
When you join these communities, see to it that you read and understand clearly the rules and regulations so you don’t commit any violation that will get you kicked out from the community.
Just the same, you need to create your own set of rules and regulations for the online community that you’ve established so that you can maintain harmony and peace within it.
Once you’ve become a valuable member in the existing online community and you’ve established your credibility and expertise in the groups that you’ve created yourself, this is the only time that you can start promoting the products that you’re affiliated with.
Always remember that you should only recommend your affiliate products if the situation calls for it. Never force your fellow members to buy any product if they don’t want to. Hard selling as you know never works for affiliate marketing.
Having a website is always a good idea if you’re in affiliate marketing. But it’s also important to know that this is not the only platform that you can use to promote your affiliate products.