7 Ways To Make Money As An Affiliate

7 Ways To Make Money As An Affiliate

Money is intoxicating. The allure of it can draw you in. It has a certain attraction that magnetizes people, luring them in from all corners of the earth. But money is also elusive. It can bob and weave like a professional boxer dodging its opponent. That’s because most people who set out to make money fail. After all, it’s hard to build a business. It requires discipline and perseverance. Effort and skill. It’s not easy by any measure.

That’s why some opt to skip the business and earn a living in different ways. Some get jobs—hanging up their dreams like an old set of clothes. But others take a different route. They see through all the smoke and mirrors. They watch people make money as affiliates hand over fist. Yes, some affiliates crush it. They understand the mechanics of affiliate marketing and they know precisely how to position affiliate offers for maximum exposure.

Some affiliates are incredibly savvy. They can promote affiliate links almost effortlessly. They quickly rise to the top of leaderboards in affiliate challenges. But how do they do it? How is it that some affiliates can make so much money while others falter and fail? Is there some secret to affiliate marketing? Do you need a big audience? An email list with thousands of people? Or is there some other secret sauce?

Many have tried to make money as affiliates. But so many of those people have failed. They’re drawn into affiliate marketing like a tiger roaming the tundra who can smell fresh meat from a hundred miles away. Not many of those people make much headway though. To their credit, they do try. But making money as an affiliate isn’t easy for a reason. If it was, everyone would be doing it. Right?

How To Make Money As An Affiliate

Here’s the question. Is it possible to make money as an affiliate without an email list? What if you don’t have an audience? Maybe you’re new to the whole affiliate marketing game. Can you still make money? The answer is yes. And no. Let me explain. Most people who are drawn into affiliate marketing are lured in by other affiliates who are making astronomical amounts of cash.

Other affiliates make it look so easy. They make money in their sleep. From their phones. They seem to have endless streams of passive income. And they make it look effortless. Right? And most people think this. “If they can do it, I can do it.” But that’s not usually the case. Most of the top affiliates have an existing audience. They either have a substantial email list or have a large social media following. Others have popular blogs with existing organic traffic already ranking high for relevant keywords.

It’s easier to promote an affiliate offer when you have a substantial audience or a heavy-duty traffic source that gushes leads. But what if you don’t? Can you still make money as an affiliate? You can. But you must be savvy. And you must understand the mechanics of online marketing. The top affiliates don’t spam others with their offers. They don’t hit up friends and family. And they never hound people to join their affiliate offers.

Yes you can make money as an affiliate. As long as you understand how to attract people instead of repelling them. After all, it’s easy to repel, right? And it’s in moments of desperation when you really need to make money that you repel the most people. Because people can also sense that from miles away. They can smell your desperation. You need them to join immediately so that you can make enough money to survive. And they know that.

The Power Of Reciprocity

Most affiliates also never succeed because they don’t understand the power of reciprocity. Reciprocity is the most compelling moving force in marketing. Because it is built into human psychology. We always feel indebted to those who give us value. That’s just the way it works. Think about the supermarket that gives away free samples. That’s not some altruistic move. They know the power of reciprocity. And they know that if you enjoy what you taste, you’re far more likely to buy it.

Why do you think bloggers blog? Do you think they enjoy spending countless hours creating valuable content that helps people solve problems? Nope. That’s obviously not it. At least that’s not the whole picture. They blog because of the power of reciprocity. This fundamental concept is baked into the very fiber of the digital web that binds us all. It’s an underlying principle behind relevancy. Search engines know that great content delivers value to its users. And they naturally want to promote that content.

Reciprocity is everywhere you look and turn. Why do you think companies provide free consultations? Again, it’s not altruism. There’s a purpose behind it. And that’s precisely what you must understand to make any real money as an affiliate. Reciprocity is key. And once you learn how to wield reciprocity the right way, you’ll position yourself to make far more money than you can ever imagine. And that’s the name of the game, right?

So how do you wield reciprocity and use it to make more money in your affiliate marketing endeavors? Simple. You must build value around the offer. This is not just about spamming the links. That won’t work unless you have a massive existing audience. Even then, you should create value around the offer. Reciprocity means that you’re delivering a lot of value upfront to help spur that person to join through your affiliate link. And it means you’re creating value at every step along the way.

1—Know The Customer

Affiliates are not business owners. They don’t manage the business. They don’t oversee its employees. None of that. But they do help the business sell more of its products and services. And for that they do play a role in helping that business to grow fast. The problem? Most people who try to make money as affiliates fail because they fail to understand who the customer is.

When you don’t know the customer, you can’t speak to the customer. You don’t understand their problems or their pain points. How do you expect to connect with that person on a deeper and more profound level? You can’t. And yes you must understand the customer and who they are. Affiliates who skip this step fail out of the gate.

Think about it like this. Let’s say you’re employed by the same company as a full-time salesperson. You work for that company and are in charge of selling its products and services. Do you think a salesperson knows the customer? Of course they do. They have to if they want to succeed in sales. You can’t realistically expect to make any money selling the company’s products or services when you skip this step.

Top affiliates don’t skip this step. And that’s something they don’t tell you. They spend time understanding the business and its customers. They ask questions and probe. Like a detective, they follow the clues. They learn precisely who the customer is. And what their lives look like. They discover who they are implicitly and where they congregate. The groups they’re in. The publications they read. They know everything about them. That takes work and it takes real effort.

2—Understand The Problem

Every affiliate offer worth its salt solves a problem. What is that problem? It’s your job to understand what it is. Yes, I know. You’re just an affiliate. But you must understand the problem that the customer is struggling with. Sure, you need to know the customer. But you must know their problem even better. And I do mean to know every side of the problem they’re facing.

How does the affiliate offer solve their problem? What value does the offer provide? Most affiliates promote offers and have no clue what’s inside the offer. That’s a mistake. How can you know the problem or how the offer solves the problem without buying the product or service you’re promoting? You can’t succeed like that.

Let me put it to you this way. Let’s say you’re an affiliate for ClickFunnels. The company has paid over $140 million to its affiliates. But who do you think the top affiliates are? Do you think it’s random people promoting this sales funnel software platform? Of course it’s not. The top affiliates are the company’s most prolific users.

What can you take away from that? As a customer of a product you know the problem you experienced before you signed up. That’s the beauty of it. You understand it because you lived it. That doesn’t mean you have to always be the customer for an affiliate offer. But it certainly helps. Know the problem inside and out if you want to make any real amount of money promoting the affiliate program.

3—Create A Valuable Offer

It’s not enough to just promote an affiliate offer. You must sweeten the pot. How? By creating a valuable offer. When you know the customer and understand the problem, you can build an offer that delivers even more value. What can you include that will help the customer succeed? Can you provide templates? Checklists? Video tutorials? Group coaching?

Top affiliates often include thousands of dollars worth of digital products during affiliate challenges. They make the offer so good that it’s nearly impossible to say no. That’s how you create a valuable offer. It’s not just by pushing people over to the affiliate offer using your link. It’s not about spamming or shouting from mountaintops. You won’t make money like that.

Do not skip this. You must create value around the affiliate offer. Especially if you’re new to the affiliate space. You have to build value around the affiliate offer. And you must build a landing page that displays the value stack. That’s just a line-item list of all the things they get when they sign up using your affiliate link. This displays the value front and center.

Keep in mind that most of this will be perceived value. You’re not actually giving away thousands of dollars of merchandise. This is usually digital products like online courses, access to membership sites, coaching, and so on. But it is still valuable. This works even better when you actually sell those items elsewhere for thousands of dollars. It’s not necessary. But it does help solidify the value.

4—Design A Bridge Page

The most important concept you must learn to really make money as an affiliate is the bridge page. A bridge page (sometimes called a bridge funnel) is the way you connect your lead generation to the affiliate offer. You don’t want to just directly link to the affiliate offer. If you do that you might never get the contact details of the individual who signed up using your affiliate link.

Plus, when you build a bridge page you can market directly to that person. Remember that not everyone will sign up straight away. It takes time for some to complete that process. And in that time you should be building rapport through email marketing. To bring most people into your world with a bridge page, you need a powerful lead magnet. Again, you must create value at this stage.

Bridge pages are really lead-generation funnels. That’s what they’re designed to do. They generate leads by providing some form of value in exchange. That value can be a free lead magnet. It can also be a detailed video like a tutorial of some kind. It doesn’t matter what form it takes on. What matters is that it helps the customer solve part of the problem they’re experiencing.

Lead magnets also do something else very powerful. They create authority. Since you’re the one giving them the lead magnet, you’re now an authority. As long as that lead magnet delivers real value, you’re now respected by the prospect. After all, you helped them solve part of the problem they’re experiencing. Or you made things far more clear for them. And that’s important.

5—Address The Objections

What are the objections holding the customer back from buying? The better you know the objections, the more likely they’ll buy. You’ll use the objections throughout all your communications. And you’ll especially use it when you communicate through email. This works best when you’ve already gone through those objections yourself. But you still signed up for the affiliate offer.

Even if you didn’t go through those objections, you can still highlight them. Talk about others who felt that way to elicit a similar emotion in the prospect. You do this through powerful story telling. Stories are the way to form a deeper bond with the prospect. They’ll get to know you best when you share powerful stories that address the objections they face.

There’s a lot of strategy that goes into this. You’re not just throwing content out there for the sake of it. You must get to the heart of what holds a person back from joining. Is there a problem with the offer? Is there some part of it that’s objectionable? Or is it something to do with them? Do they somehow feel they won’t succeed with it or it won’t solve their problem because they don’t believe they’ll follow through?

Maybe the objections are time. They don’t have enough time to solve the problem. Maybe it’s money. It could cost too much for them to buy right now. And you must understand all of these objections and create stories that help to overcome these objections. It’s not easy. But the concepts behind it are simple.

6—Create Unique Content

Always create unique and valuable content designed to draw prospects in. The best place to do this is on social media. It doesn’t matter if you have a presence or not. The point is that you build content around the customer and their problems. You also create a call to action that links to your bridge page. On social media you can do this by placing a link in your profile.

Profile links should never be your actual affiliate link. Depending on the affiliate program you’re promoting, that could get you banned on some social media platforms. You should link to a bridge page that has a valuable lead magnet. This way, you’ll generate leads when people discover your content and click on the link in your profile.

This isn’t rocket science. You just have to put yourself out there and not worry about what others think. You can also build written content, create YouTube videos, and even do podcasts. Pick one medium and stick to it. Go all in with your content creation. Then, make sure to promote that content that the right way.

You don’t do this by spamming people or direct messaging people endlessly. That strategy will agitate others and make them report you. You’ll risk bans and blocks when you do that. And overall, it’s just not the right approach to take. Instead, put out high-value content for people to discover. If it’s designed the right way, it’ll attract the right people.

7—Drive Traffic To Your Bridge Page

The best way to make money as an affiliate is to use organic means to drive traffic. Organic traffic is the most relevant form of traffic. But that doesn’t mean you can’t use paid ads. If you have your ecosystem of a bridge page and lead magnet all set up, you can use paid ads to drive traffic. There’s nothing wrong with paid ads. As long as you know what you’re doing, it could accelerate your growth fast.

If you don’t have the budget for paid ads, there’s nothing wrong with that. It’ll force you to follow the frameworks for truly understanding the customer and their problem. You’ll need to drive traffic organically through YouTube, Facebook, TikTok, Instagram and other methods. This requires consistency and effort. You can’t just push for a couple of weeks and then stop. It doesn’t work that way.

You must be all-in when you’re driving traffic. Go heavy or don’t bother doing it at all. Don’t let this become another failed money-making opportunity for you. The longer you stick to it, the more likely you’ll be to succeed. Every good thing takes time. Don’t allow the opinion of others to hold you back from pushing forward.

Affiliate marketing is hard. Obviously. Everyone knows that. As easy as others make it out to be, understand that this will be a climb. But you can make money as an affiliate by sticking to your guns. Push hard. Drive traffic. Create value. And form real bonds with people. Don’t just look at this like a dollar sign. You should actually care that the thing you’re pitching will help solve a person’s problem. That’s the surest path to real growth.

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