Affiliate Marketing 2016

Recently I met Michael. Michael has been in the affiliate marketing business for 3 years now.

He was skeptical at first so he started off slowly, devoting maybe two days a week to his affiliate activities without getting all that much in return.

Sure, he was getting some money on the side but he wasn’t getting rich.

Until one day when things started to pick up. This was in early 2015. He started putting in more work into promoting his offers, building up lists, and generating leads.

By summer, Michael has pocketed over $ 80, 000 in commissions!

He was ecstatic – as everyone in their right mind would be, right?

His offers were a golden goose that will keep on giving for years, or so he thought.

The reality set in about 6 months ago, just around Christmas.

His monthly revenue started to dwindle down to a fraction of what it was just a month ago and he was lucky to make a $ 1,000 that month.

The following months just kept getting worse.

Every single affiliate marketer I know has faced this in their career.

You’re riding a high for a few months and then all of the sudden you’re down on your knees struggling to make ends meet.

How do people consistently make money with affiliate marketing?

What is the trick to keeping your revenue steady and growing, year in and year out?

These are tough questions to answer but if you don’t find a solution to them you will quickly find yourself in Michael’s position – a month away from having to proactively look for a job in this crashing economy because you can no longer make enough to provide for yourself and your family through affiliate marketing.

Here are some affiliate marketing tips that I believe will count in 2016 as much as they did previously.

Unfortunately, not a lot of people go by them, which is why I believe they are not getting the success they are after.

Be smarter – use these to keep your revenue growing consistently.

Find out what worked and replicate it…

Affiliate marketers have a lot of techniques at their disposal when it comes to marketing offers.

Most of the time, we’re running a couple of different tactics at the same time to maximize our profits.

This is both good and bad. It’s good because diversification is key – bad because it’s hard to glean what’s working.

If you had enormous success in the past you will want to know what triggered it, right.

Think hard about the following:

  • What offers were you promoting and how?
  • Did you collect your own leads or purchased them?
  • With which affiliate network did you have most success?
  • Did you have outside help: copywriter for your emails and presell, social media assistant, a person responsible for lead generation, etc.?
  • How often were you emailing your lists?

The key to your past success lies in something that you were doing at the time but you’re not doing right now.

Make sure to comb through that success and replicate everything you back then.

The trick might lie in one thing alone but it can also be the results of all of those things combined. Once you identify what works you will have a blueprint for success.

Nurture relationships with key managers in affiliate networks…

Most affiliate networks assign an account manager to you and that person’s job is to help you grow and make money.

A lot of marketers forget this. Personally, I maintain a very close relationship with all the managers I work with.

I even have their Skype contacts and I wholeheartedly advise you to connect with yours over Skype too.

This way they will always be a call away if you have any questions or doubts.

Consider saying hi occasionally and asking about new developments.

You will be surprised by the amount of stuff you can learn from your account manager – things that you can use to tweak your tactics and earn more money!

Establish and grow your personal brand!

One of the best ways to build a brand is to start your own blog in the niche you’re working in. This will allow you to:

  • Teach people about the products you’re promoting
  • Answer people’s questions and help solve their problems
  • Write and publish quality articles and in-depth guides that will hopefully give you exposure in organic search results
  • Use your blog to connect with other influencers in your niche – guest post regularly and create content that will serve as link and social bait
  • Grow social media presence and get people to follow you and share your content

The purpose of growing your personal brand is to establish yourself as an expert and a thought leader in your niche.

Once you do that, people will easily buy from you since they will know you’re trustworthy and knowledgeable. To learn more about personal brand building, check out this in-depth guide from Quicksprout.

Have goals and keep them…

  • Revenue goals – What are you aiming for on a daily, weekly, and a monthly basis? Knowing how much you need and want to earn will help you devise a marketing tactic that will get you there.
  • Cost goals – as an affiliate marketer you will be bootstrapping a lot which is helpful when you need to keep your overall cost low. Setting a limit on much you can spend on a monthly basis for lead generation, advertising, and overhead costs will ensure that you have a profitable bottom line. The last thing you want is to have your costs eat through your revenue.
  • Traffic goals – To increase your revenue you will either have to sell more expensive products or sell more of what you have to. For the second to happen you will need to focus on growing your traffic. This can be done by publishing relevant content and driving people to your offers the good, old organic way.

Develop a daily schedule for all your affiliate marketing activities…

Knowing what you have to do and when will go a long way towards making sure that things actually get done.

  • Have a content schedule along with guest posts planned a month ahead
  • Set up an email autoresponder sequence and keep in touch with your subscribers on a regular basis
  • Schedule regular third-party traffic and lead generation activities – don’t rely exclusively on organic traffic
  • Set time aside to study new offers that you might want to pick up and market
  • Participate in online conversation – make sure that you answer all the comments on your blog and build rapport with your readers

Of course, only you know what has to be done and when so this list will probably grow a bit larger than it is here.

Make sure you cover every aspect of your day to day activities and try not to neglect anything.

Keep building bridges…

Ultimately, you’re in this for the sales and profits, but that doesn’t mean that those two things are the only aspect of this business you need to be focusing on.

Some of your interactions will not result in an immediate sale.

Your first instinct might be to disengage – not to answer emails from an overbearing potential customer, dropping networks that seem like too much hassle, or not lending a helping hand to fellow marketers when they reach out.

I strongly advise against this. Build bridges for the future.

You never know when that potential customer might have a particular scratch to itch – if you were helpful they will run to you and might become the best customer you’ve ever had.

Some of your colleagues might profile themselves as a thought leader in your niche pretty soon – if you were there for them it’s more likely they will be there for you, too.

Bottom line: you make money from people and being a good person doesn’t cost much but it can turn out to be extremely rewarding.

Keep up with the industry…

Affiliate marketing is constantly changing and evolving.

A couple of years ago it was all about how persistent you were and about the size of your lists.

Today, it’s about how helpful you are, whether or not you have good content, and did you invest enough time into building your own personal brand.

Tomorrow, it’s going to be about something else.

Keep up with the changes: check out those new and emerging affiliate networks, do a bit of investigating about that new niche that cropped up, and stay on top of tools people are using to turn their hard work into success.

Everything is constantly moving forward so you better be able to follow.

These affiliate marketing tricks will help you position yourself in your niche.

Of course, there is more to it so make sure to check back in as I’ll be posting regularly about how you can supercharge your efforts and achieve affiliate marketing success.