Affiliate marketing is the brainchild that was born out of virtual networking. The simplicity of this marketing method is what makes it so appealing to many online professionals. All you have to do is find a product or service you like, promote it, and wait for someone to bite! Instant riches, right? Well, not quite.
Affiliate marketing is a very profitable way to flex your passive income chops, but it’s very easy to get lost in the shuffle, and lose out on what may initially seem like a safe bet. Many people come into affiliate marketing expecting quick cash flow, but are swayed by the amount of time and effort it takes to make a profit. In fact, according to Forbes.com, less than 1% of affiliate marketers have been operational since 2013.
There are many common misconceptions about affiliate marketing that can lead to huge mistakes and missed opportunities. Here are the five biggest mistakes you should avoid if you want to be a successful affiliate marketer.
1) Promoting too many services and products
It’s often said that there’s power in numbers, but in fact, the exact opposite is true when it comes to affiliate marketing. Signing up for too many affiliate marketing programs at once can result in quite a few negative outcomes, no matter how good your intentions may be. Managing more than one or two at a time can become a burden. Instead of marketing a few products really well, inevitably, you’ll end up scrambling just to find the time to squeeze fair advertising in for all of your products.
You’ll give your customers paralysis by analysis. What this means is, that when a customer is faced with TOO many options, they’ll simply move on. Focus your attention and energy on marketing just a few products really well to MAXIMIZE profits
2) Not Testing out the Product
Testing out your affiliate marketing products is probably the most important step you can take in any affiliate marketing program. According to MarketingLand.com a whopping 90% of customer reported that their buying decisions were influenced by online reviews. Simply put, people trust experience, not advertising.
If you’re just pushing a product without being able to tell the customer what it does or how well it works, they can’t trust you, and your conversions won’t increase. Take the time to get familiar with your product.
3) Not being able to answer WHY
One of the biggest problems with affiliate marketing today is the fact that the market is filled with JUNK. Lots of products don’t really have any functional value, and customers can’t really justify the purchase. You want to avoid being the web-based version of SkyMall. Make sure you select your affiliate marketing products carefully. You want to be able to stand behind your product.
The customer is going to want to know “WHY should I buy this? Is this product for me?” As an affiliate marketer, you should be able to answer both these questions with ease. If you can’t you might want to think about why you picked that product in the first place.
4) Not Tracking Conversions
Affiliate marketing is built in such a way that lets you place it practically anywhere. You can put a link in your vlog after a quick plug. You can add a link in your blog posts for readers wanting more information. You can even market affiliate products to your email subscribers.
Keep in mind that, just like with other marketing strategies, it’s important to note your successes and your failures. If your email marketing isn’t translating to too many conversions, but you’re noticing better results from your vlog, hone in on vlog promotion and see where you can improve with your email marketing. Applying standard marketing techniques to affiliate marketing is going to help you see better results in real time.
5) Forgetting You’re Not Supposed to Sell
It’s easy to forget that the business of affiliate marketing it all about getting customers to pay attention to someone else. Remember you’re getting paid to have people click a link to direct them away from your content. It’s not your job to sell the product, just to promote it. Make people want to know more about the product. Selling is the job of your affiliate. Your role in the equation is simply to pass on a good word. Don’t’ spend too much time “pitching” the product to your readers or consumers. By sounding too much like a salesman you run the risk of losing conversions. Keep it simple and remember to recommend without trying to close the deal.
So those are five mistakes I commonly see among many affiliate marketers 🙂
Affiliate Marketing may not be as easy as it sounds at face value but, if you put forth time, effort, and keep these tips close, you’ll start seeing results in no time!