Looking for a side hustle? As you may know, my day job is in marketing. At a recent writers’ group meeting, I got into a discussion about affiliate marketing.
Several members are veteran affiliate marketers of various products and online stores. They shared some good advice for beginners.
Not sure what “affiliate marketing” might be? Basically it’s promoting products and services on commission. Many companies are happy to pay affiliates so that they can develop an army of promoters, just as Amazon and eBay do.
Affiliate marketing: create a website in 60 minutes
“You need a website,” our experts agreed. “It’s essential—some companies won’t enroll you in their affiliate program until they look at your site.”
Cue loud groans, but the writers explained that you can set up a website in less than an hour, especially if you have writing skills. Companies like Weebly, Wix, and Squarespace make it easy to set up a site.
Let’s look at the best affiliate marketing tips from our group.
Work at it: “Treat it like a side job…”
One self-publishing author said: “The best advice I ever got about affiliate marketing is to treat it like a job. It’s the perfect side hustle for you if you’re ferrying kids around afternoons and weekends.”
Once you’ve created a website, write reviews of the affiliate products you’re promoting.
Your thoughts are valuable: “Choose products and services you know and use…”
Several writers said that they started out by joining affiliate programs for products they already own.
Choose newer products, or products which are trending.
Not sure what to promote? Think about what you buy from Amazon, then join Amazon’s Affiliate program.
Can you surprise readers? “What surprised and pleased you about the product?”
Reviews are your primary promotional tool.
Be honest. Consider this question: “What surprised and pleased you about the product?” (Write it down.)
If you love a product, why is that? Collect ideas in a journal. You’ll soon develop content for your reviews.
Ask friends whether they use a product. What do they think of it?
Reviews: “What did you dislike about the product?”
Vital: think about what you don’t like about a product you’re reviewing. Perhaps it comes with excessive packaging. Maybe it needs better instructions.
Nothing’s perfect. Your readers will appreciate an honest take on a product.
Show and tell: “Take lots of photos and short videos…”
How big is the product? (Will it fit on your kitchen bench? In your laundry?) Readers want to know about products in use, so they appreciate photos and videos.
Keep your videos short, if you can.
Is affiliate marketing for you?
My best friend took up affiliate marketing when she stayed home to have her son.
She was teaching herself digital marketing at the time. Then she became engrossed, when she set up a website for her (obscure) hobby.
Even after she returned to work, she kept up her website. A little community had formed around the site. Her site’s visitors trusted her reviews. They left comments for each other and eventually my friend formed a Facebook group.
Think about your hobbies and interests. Perhaps they’ll prove to be inspirations for your affiliate marketing ventures.
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