What is Affiliate Marketing & Is It Right for You? (Plus: 5 Tips for Affiliate Marketing Success)

Does it feel like everyone and their sister has become an affiliate for one product or another?

Does it seem like affiliates are just trying to sell you on the latest, greatest thing?

What if I told you that with affiliate marketing you could make a little (or a lot!) of extra money by simply sharing a different special link? You’re already talking about the products you love and trust, but with affiliate marketing, you can actually make some extra income?

If you’ve heard about monetizing your blog or your business by using affiliate marketing, but aren’t quite sure what it means, read on and learn more about the power of becoming an affiliate!

What is Affiliate Marketing?

Affiliate marketing itself is very simple; it’s the implementation and actual marketing that can get a little complicated.

Affiliate marketing is earning a commission by selling someone else’s product or service.

Most affiliate models will use a third party affiliate program (such as impact or AvantLink) to provide you with unique links to share with your community. Whether you choose to share on social media, your blog, email, or even text message, when your link is followed and a purchase is made, you’ll earn a commission.

Depending on the affiliate agreement, you might earn a flat fee for every sale or a percentage of the sales.

Affiliate marketing benefits everyone.

Nothing changes for the end customer – they don’t have to pay anything extra for using your affiliate link; they’ll simply get to support you!

You benefit from affiliate marketing, of course, by making a commission by simply talking about the products and services you already love.

The seller or creator of the product or service benefits by engaging affiliates and having additional marketing channels working on their behalf for a nominal fee or percentage.

Get clear on reaching your target audience online

Are you a rockstar entrepreneur, but totally lost when it comes to marketing your business? Learn 10 simple tips for marketing your business online (for FREE!).

Is Affiliate Marketing Right for You?

Affiliate marketing isn’t right for everyone…but it’s certainly a great fit for many bloggers, entrepreneurs, and those who love the products they use (and love talking about them).

Earn passive income

By investing a little bit of time in content creation or reaching out at the right time or in the right places, you’ll be able to earn income passively.

That’s the dream right? Earning money while you sleep?!

Affiliate marketing is powerful because it’s based on the ripple effects that a single link or single piece of content can have within your community.

There’s no dealing with the sale

As an affiliate marketer, you’re not responsible for producing or manufacturing products, providing services, payment processing,

In general, you’re getting paid to share your story or your experience with a product or service. You’re getting paid to put your gold star on something by recommending it to someone else.

Work from anywhere

One huge benefit of affiliate marketing is that you can do it from anywhere. In general, all you need is a smart phone (or tablet, lap top, or other similar device) and an internet connection.

That means you can be a mompreneur and an affiliate, be traveling and an affiliate, or have another full-time job and be an affiliate!

5 Tips for Successful Affiliate Marketing

1. Don’t focus solely on the product or service

Whether we’re talking email marketing, social media marketing, blogging, podcasting, video marketing, etc., think of affiliate marketing someone else’s product just as you would your own product or service.

If you only talk about how a great a product or service is, no one will buy. No one wants to be sold to constantly. But if you pepper in affiliate links with your valuable, helpful content and build relationships along the way, you’ll have a much more eager audience.

2. Make it related

Choose wisely when it comes to the products or services you choose to affiliate market.

For instance, I’m an affiliate for Amazon and Target. Over on my personal blog, I talk a lot about Mom life and it’s a perfect way to make a little extra income when I share products that I already know, love, and trust.

Other examples are: a web developer might become an affiliate for a web hosting company or a landscape architect might become an affiliate for a plant nursery.

3. Choose the right product/service

Similarly, it’s crucial that you love the product or service you’re recommending. (Your audience will sense when you’re being disingenuous.)

If you love and trust a product, do a simple Google search for the product name and affiliate. You’ll quickly find out whether they have an affiliate program (and more and more companies are creating one!).

4. Be transparent

Always let your audience know that you’re using affiliate links. While, again, purchasing through an affiliate costs no more for the customer, it’s best to be fully transparent that you are being compensated for your recommendation.

Here’s what I use at the beginning of any post (or email) that contains an affiliate link. Feel free to borrow it!

This post contains some affiliate links, which means – at no additional cost to you – I will earn a commission if you click through a link for a product that I wholeheartedly recommend and make a purchase.

5. It’s not a get-rich-quick scheme

The last thing about affiliate marketing I’d like to leave you with is that it’s not something that will make you millions – not right away certainly.

Affiliate marketing done right requires good relationship building marketing efforts that engage your community and establish you as a trustworthy person.

Affiliate marketing isn’t for those who wish to replace their income overnight, but it’s perfect for those who are willing to put the time, energy, and effort into building side income that could eventually be quite substantial!

Want to get more amazing digital marketing tips?