Understand the basics of how affiliate marketing works. Many online retailers who sell products or services offer affiliate programs. If you decide to sign up for a company’s affiliate program, you get a tracking link to put on your blog. When visitors click on that link, the link stores a cookie in their browser that remains for a set period of time, such as 60 days. If the visitor purchases a product from that merchant site within the time period, you earn a sales commission.
Best Forex Partners (BFP) was established in 2011 by a group of international financiers and global online marketing professionals who saw a need to change the nature of affiliate marketing for the better. In a few short years they combined their over 60 years of combined financial and marketing experience to create a new way to affiliate market and have never looked back!
Affiliate networks play an important role in the relationship between affiliates and merchants. They are the meeting point, which is why most affiliates and merchants will be a member of at least one of them. This chapter focuses on what affiliate networks are and how they work, with the process being explained for both affiliates and merchants. The chapter concludes with five popular affiliate networks in the industry at this moment with most prominent features and benefits highlighted for each of them.
The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), which took effect on May 25, 2018, is a set of regulations governing the use of personal data across the EU. This is forcing some affiliates to obtain user data through opt-in consent (updated privacy policies and cookie notices), even if they are not located in the European Union. This new regulation should also remind you to follow FTC guidelines and clearly disclose that you receive affiliate commissions from your recommendations.
For example, let’s say that a new lead stumbles upon your brand on social media. They may not have heard of your company before, but through your social media content, they are able to learn more about your brand and the value that you provide. This same situation can apply to your current customers. After seeing your social media content on multiple networks, existing customers are able to become better acquainted with your business, which may increase their interest in a repeat purchase.
But this “old school” method of making money online is still going strong because of all the benefits it offers to small-scale, solo internet entrepreneurs. And it’s an especially powerful business model to those without much experience doing business online. Many successful online business owners make their first dollar online with affiliate marketing.
Social media can be used not only as public relations and direct marketing tools but also as communication channels targeting very specific audiences with social media influencers and social media personalities and as effective customer engagement tools. Technologies predating social media, such as broadcast TV and newspapers can also provide advertisers with a fairly targeted audience, given that an ad placed during a sports game broadcast or in the sports section of a newspaper is likely to be read by sports fans. However, social media websites can target niche markets even more precisely. Using digital tools such as Google Adsense, advertisers can target their ads to very specific demographics, such as people who are interested in social entrepreneurship, political activism associated with a particular political party, or video gaming. Google Adsense does this by looking for keywords in social media user's online posts and comments. It would be hard for a TV station or paper-based newspaper to provide ads that are this targeted (though not impossible, as can be seen with "special issue" sections on niche issues, which newspapers can use to sell targeted ads).
Cost per lead: The clients I work with don’t try to close a sale as soon as they get a website visitor—they use their Website to collect information from their visitors, in return for a small free product or service. When Website visitors provide their contact information, they become sales leads, so your cost per lead is what you’re spending for each person who clicks on your ad, visits your Website, and “opts in” by giving you his or her email address or phone number.
In a previous article, "How to Use Instagram for Lead Generation," I shared how you can maximize your social media reach by running searches for places and people to find your next customer. To go one step further, set up saved searches on Twitter as well around the people and topics that you want to sell to. If you’re in business-to-business, tap into LinkedIn to identify who it is that you’re trying to get in front of -- to sell to -- and then head over to Twitter and group your prospects into a curated list. On occasion, "like" the content posted from your prospects and engage with them back. If you’re business-to-consumer, create saved search results around the events or topics that your target customer is speaking about to give your community manager(s) a curated list to engage from.
For sites looking to monetize their existing traffic through affiliate marketing, a major determinant of success is picking the right offers to run. The difference in earnings from a bad offer and a good one can be enormous. Unfortunately, finding the “right” offer isn’t exactly easy; if you’re using an affiliate marketing network such as Commission Junction (now part of Conversant), SharesASale, or LinkShare, you will have literally thousands of affiliate offers available to you.
Two-tier programs exist in the minority of affiliate programs; most are simply one-tier. Referral programs beyond two-tier resemble multi-level marketing (MLM) or network marketing but are different: Multi-level marketing (MLM) or network marketing associations tend to have more complex commission requirements/qualifications than standard affiliate programs.
Despite these pleasing statistics, internet marketing isn’t magic. The important things to keep in mind are efficacy and return on investment. Though business owners are capable of doing many of the fundamentals of internet marketing on their own (e.g. email marketing, banner ad creation, etc.), if these things aren’t done well, they don’t have the proper effect. Consider this fact: In a study of banner ads worldwide, the average click through rate for banner ads in the U.S. was reported to be 0.1 percent. First, remember that in the world of online advertising, getting an ad seen by thousands of people is relatively easy, so a 0.1 percent click through rate would lead to a lot of clicks depending on where the ad runs. Second, this is the average of all banner ads, so some ads have much higher rates and others had lower rates. Business owners who create their own banner ads run will often find themselves with lower response rates than they had expected.
I didn't get to test the full effect of a big downline yet (I just got the tool) but I can tell you the rest of the site works exactly as stated--my links got clicked, I earned credits, and my ads got displayed. Traffic Annihilator even tracked my results so I know how many clicks and how many ad displays. That was an impressive unadvertised extra feature.
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This is where we put the “marketing” in affiliate marketing. It’s up to you as the affiliate marketer to make sure that your audience sees the affiliate links and offers you have on your site. You can’t simply throw them into the right sidebar and hope that your audience seeks them out and clicks on them. There’s a great deal that you can do to increase the likelihood that your visitors click on the links and get in front of the affiliate offer.