What They Don’t Tell You About Affiliate Marketing

“It should feel genuinely good to earn income from your blog – you should be driven by a healthy ambition to succeed. If your blog provides genuine value, you fully deserve to earn income from it.”
Steve Pavlina

If you are after a quick dollar with blogging, I can tell you that you will be severely disappointed.

Setting up the blog is the easy part. However, making money from your blog is a whole other ball game.

I discovered this the hard way. There are so many blogs that explore how you can monetize your blog through affiliate marketing. After reading them I felt like I was properly informed and was itching to get started; I honestly couldn’t wait to make that easy dollar… I was in for a rude awakening.

I’m not going to lie, I was naive; I wanted to make that quick dollar.

It seemed too good to be true: Simply write about your life and subtly advertise products through your content and watch the cash roll in – sounds easy right?

I didn’t make a cent.

After 3 months I felt defeated. I’d read how to become an affiliate and had done so through Commission Factory (easy to use – I recommend checking it out). I began advertising products on my blog. But the best I received were a few impressions. What was I doing wrong?

Check out what I wish I discovered before I delved into affiliate marketing…

But before I do, let me explain what affiliate marketing actually entails.

Affiliate marketing is simply a term used to describe an arrangement between a retailer and an affiliate. The affiliate is someone who has their own website and advertises the retailers products to their audience. The affiliate evidently earns a commission for every product they sell.

1  Have a Loyal Following.

When you begin your blog, I want you to forget about affiliate marketing for a little while. At this moment, your focus should be on your followers and subscribers. Set up your newsletter and nurture your relationship with your followers. You can do this by giving away freebies, having competitions and most importantly by delivering valuable content that your readers will love. Aim to have 500 – 1000 followers before you begin affiliate marketing.

2  Choosing the Right Product to Sell.

This is where your niche plays a role. What is your niche? What is the type of content you deliver? Will the product you sell match your blogs purpose? The reason people follow your blog is because of your content. If your niche is about yoga and you decide to advertise stationary, this will be out of character and customers will be less likely to invest in the product. Additionally, you need to identify the customers wants and needs and choose a product according to that. Your customers will not purchase anything unless they see a need for it. Keep this in mind.

3  Having a Specific Niche.

When I began, I wanted my niche to be based off exploring unique places in and around Sydney. However, being a uni student and working in hospitality, time became a restraint. Consequently, I decided to merge that idea  with skincare and lifestyle. My niche was not succinctly defined. I found this difficult to choose products that were appropriate for the readers. Although I know of many lifestyle blogs that are very successful! I love Amelia Liana.

4  Marketing Plan.

How will you advertise your products? What social media platforms will you share them on? What were your strengths and weaknesses of this month? How did the readers respond to this product? Was this campaign successful? As blogger after blogger will preach, successful blogging comes after hard work. You need to be constantly planning and reviewing your progress and asking yourself questions that will get you thinking about the mechanics. Setting in place a marketing plan will enable you to constantly improve and increase your traffic with affiliate links.

You need to hone your strengths and improve your weaknesses.

There are many ways that you can monetize your blog, affiliate marketing is just one of them 🙂 I hope you found this post resourceful!

Jess xxx

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