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A common belief is that founders need huge sums of money to get marketing results, but this is often not the case. Affiliate marketing — where others earn a commission for promoting a company or driving sales — is an affordable investment with low barriers to entry and open to a variety of brands. The only real requirement is patience. It won’t make you rich overnight: instead, if you want to join the field, you have to be ready to grow your product incrementally, be willing to seek out the opportunities the market has to offer and generate returns incrementally.
How to Leverage Affiliate Marketing
The essential elements of an effective affiliate marketing partner program include finding people with the right traffic, developing attractive offers for them, and then giving them the necessary tools—all of which require deep research. Fortunately, there is a wealth of content on the web that explains each step in detail.
There are also easy-to-use tools to help, such as Google Analytics, which enables you to create a system for tracking clicks and measuring partner sales. Another option is to join a trusted affiliate network (such as CJ, AWIN or Fiverr) that is relevant to your business goals. For example, if you were planning to get into the publishing business, you might choose an affiliate marketing platform such as the Amazon Associates Affiliate Program or the Rakuten Advertising Affiliate Network. Or, if your business is looking to enter the travel industry, my company Travelpayouts is a great option.
Such affiliate networks are usually very strong, the best ones are time-tested and popular among marketers, mainly because they provide a lot of traffic and are easy to access. Many of them charge no onboarding fee, welcome newcomers and help them gain a better understanding of the field. Other companies like CJ (Commission Junction LLC) have stricter policies, charging a $5,000 connection fee in their case and taking a deposit from the start.
related: 3 Tips for Getting Started with Affiliate Marketing
For proper sales tracking, you also need to set up a website or mobile app. This usually takes several weeks. In a good tracking system, the integration algorithms are very advanced, which makes it easy to integrate small businesses. This tracking and integration typically requires minimal or modest investment from you.
How to Help Partners Generate Traffic and Sales
But it’s not just about integrating your platform. For affiliate marketing to be truly successful, you need to develop tools for your partners to help them generate traffic and sales – a major challenge in every way. You can try doing it yourself, or take advantage of what the web has to offer: for example, a complete “toolbox” for forming and generating links and creating widgets.
We don’t like clichés, but it’s important to realize that affiliate marketing isn’t just about increasing revenue. If you want to get the most out of it, you need to think outside the money box. For the marketing of this brand, the keys to success are teamwork and consistent focus; it’s simply impossible to create a program and leave it to its own device, hoping that one day it will become a cash cow.
Instead, you need to develop it step by step, connecting with your partners and interacting with them often. Think of it as a big family you’re on vacation. It’s not enough to book flights and hotels: you also need to make sure everyone has their belongings with them, feels good, is on the right plane, etc. So, to ensure your partners support you and want to collaborate efficiently, be prepared to share your expertise and stats (such as seasonal sales) and launch various promotions, which are the ultimate tools for generating traffic. This way, you’ll make connections, hit targets faster and enjoy the adventure.
related: Here’s Why Teens Are Affiliate Marketing Experts