Only if you are comfortable with your affiliate marketing model and practices will this happen; otherwise, if you, yourself, feel that your affiliate marketing is forced, two things will happen:
• Your readers will find it “forced” too
• You’ll start to avoid putting in the time
Finding a model that is comfortable for you will keep you addicted to helping your followers and subscribers.
1. Use giveaways and valuable information to establish a relationship.
Before people take your recommendations seriously, they need to feel you are honest—that you’re the “real deal”. If you focus on helping visitors and readers first and recommending products as a natural result of this, you will soon start to build the credibility you need before your recommendations can be taken seriously.
Keeping this in mind, make sure that all gifts you offer are your best ones: No rehashed old resell rights material or stale PLR disguised as token reports.
The relationship (and the trust) has to come before any big sales pushes
2. Be straightforward.
Just because you are taking a relationship-based approach to affiliate marketing, don’t feel you have to pussy-foot around the issue of what you’re recommending. Once you’ve identified your visitor’s problem and given her hope there is a solution—provide it, up front and without apologies or explanations.
This is absolutely crucial, no matter what style of affiliate marketing you choose to embrace.
3. Boost your reviews and bonuses.
If you are running a review site—or even just including the occasional review on your blog or website—consider using a “double whammy” strategy to increase your targeted reach. In other words, don’t just promote the product: Promote your review!
This doesn’t just mean sharing your blog post link on Twitter or announcing it on your Facebook Page. Get creative—try strategies such as video reviews, actively showing people what you are talking about in real-time as you demonstrate the pros and cons of a product.
Or give a micro-video-review that actually just hits what the product’s main purpose and benefit is, inviting readers to click on your link to learn more.
And if you are adding a great bonus gift to an affiliate product, promote your bonus gift too!
4. Review more than one product in the same post.
Even if you are not running a “comparison” review site in chart form, consider reviewing more than one product, brand or version.
People love comparisons… but be as objective as possible and include affiliate links for both products, as Laptop magazine does in the example below.
Comparisons give you a chance to earn more money. And remember that what may be a detriment in your eyes could be the very feature someone else is looking for.
5. Don’t just tell people about a product—show them how to use it.
Making a video that shows visitors how to solve their problem by using a recommended product should be a “must” for all affiliate marketers. Not only does it appeal to those who learn visually or in a tactile, kinesthetic manner, it also provides real “proof” that (a) you’ve tried and used the product yourself and (b) it works!
(You’ll also overcome fear barriers by making it look easy.)
A warning, however: Don’t just buy the product, and hurriedly “wing” your “how to use” video. Sure, you may actually do a creditable job (since it’s to be hoped the product doesn’t take rocket science to use) but that is not affiliate marketing with integrity.
Take the time to get to know your product, inside out. Use it in your everyday life. That way, you’ll discover hidden tips and tricks—and these “insider” tactics are what will really convince your viewers that you are worth listening to (and your recommended product is worth buying!)
These are only a few ideas to help bring the glam back into affiliate marketing. Be sure to lookout for chapter 2 for more ideas.