The Do’s and Don’ts of Affiliate Marketing in 2023

Jonatan Parski CEO

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The Do’s and Don’ts of Affiliate Marketing in 2023

Many people consider affiliate marketing as a method of generating income from online sources. You can earn a regular passive income from affiliate marketing links if done correctly, with some people stating it becomes their main source of income. 

There are many benefits to using an affiliate marketing campaign as a source of extra income, but many people start up their journey without understanding the do’s and don’ts of affiliate marketing strategies. 

This article takes a look at how to be an affiliate marketer, including the do’s and don’ts to make your affiliate marketing journey as successful as possible. You can use these affiliate marketing tips to build your affiliate strategy and build a successful affiliate marketing business. Here are the do’s and don’ts of an affiliate marketing program.

What is Affiliate Marketing?

This is a digital marketing model that brands can use to widen their reach with new audiences. Affiliate marketing is a growing industry, valued at around $8 billion in 2023 in the US alone. It’s a marketing strategy that’s not going away soon. The company can track any sales or lead generation using a unique ID from the affiliate.  

In simple terms, an affiliate strategy is when you promote products or services of a company and get paid a commission for every purchase someone makes using your affiliate ID code. There are also affiliate marketing deals where you get paid whenever someone clicks on the link, and for any leads your efforts generate. 

Is Affiliate Marketing Worth the Effort?

Affiliate marketing can be a fantastic way to generate passive income and monetize your content. There are influencers that report six-figure earnings from an affiliate program. However, you need to understand how to set up an affiliate strategy and place your sales links wisely. You may need to invest in an affiliate marketing website. 

Some people think you’ll get these six-figure incomes quickly and with little effort. This is not the case. Affiliate marketing takes a significant time investment. You’re going to have to put plenty of work into your affiliate marketing business, especially in the initial stages, and it can take a few years for your efforts to earn money. If you follow the tips and stay patient, your affiliate program will pay off. 

How Can You Find Affiliate Programs?

If you’re looking into how to be an affiliate marketer, you’ll need to find some good affiliate programs. There are different ways to find these programs. Some successful affiliate marketers will say you can simply look into products or services you already use and Google their names along with the term affiliate programs. You can also join an affiliate network or marketplace to help you find the best programs for you. These networks include CJ, Impact, or Awin

These marketplaces have affiliate programs listed which makes the process of choosing a program easier. There are millions of affiliate marketers who use these marketplaces successfully. 

Do I Need to Have Millions of Followers to Be Successful?

Not everyone starts off with affiliates when they have a large following. Many people start affiliate marketing with a smaller platform of loyal followers and grow from there. 

Some affiliate programs require a certain number of followers on your social media platforms or blogs. The majority of programs, however, do not. Keep in mind, the smaller your audience is, the fewer sales and click-through rates you’ll have. You want to grow your audience as much as you can to be successful, but you don’t need to have a massive audience to start off.  

The Do’s of Successful Affiliate Marketing

There are massive opportunities to earn a lucrative passive income through affiliate marketing. To be successful with this endeavor, it’s essential you follow the correct processes. Following these processes and learning from other affiliate marketers in the niche you’re interested in is crucial to avoid making mistakes and stepping into common pitfalls. 

Let’s take a look at some of the things you should have in your affiliate strategy to ensure marketing success.

Choose a Niche that Interests You

In order to have a successful affiliate strategy, you have to be an influencer in the niche you choose. It’s wise to choose something that interests you and that you’re passionate about. It should also be something that has the potential to generate income. With your niche, you should also consider your target audience, and learn how to speak to them. 

Do Your Research

Once you’ve chosen your niche, start looking for an affiliate program that suits your intended audience. It’s important to do plenty of research before committing to a program. Read up on each of the companies that interest you. Look into the products or services the company offers, and also read customer reviews. Look into how the products are made and how ingredients or components are sourced. 

Look into the terms and conditions of the affiliate program the different companies offer and make sure you understand them. Choose an affiliate program that has a large consumer base and offers high commissions. You should also consider the training material and resources the company will offer when you sign up for the program. Choose your affiliate partners carefully.

You should understand that there’s plenty of competition. Certain niches are more popular than others, and you should do research on influencers and businesses that are in the niche of your choice. Research competing businesses and products, including ingredients, prices, and other relevant information. The more you know about the products or services you want to represent, the better marketing strategies you can use. 

Make Use of Multiple Affiliate Programs

It’s also a good idea to join multiple affiliate programs, especially when you’re starting out with your affiliate strategy. This allows you to have multiple products and services to promote and diversify your potential income. An affiliate program can end, or change its commission and payout structure. Therefore, using multiple programs protects you against this. 

Multiple affiliate sales programs will also help build successful links. Not every product or brand will appeal to your audience, and you can use trial and error to find the best affiliate sales. It’s also a good idea to use multiple affiliate products to diversify what you offer your audience.

Know Your Audience

This is the secret to any successful content marketing campaign. You have to understand your audience and know what they find attractive. You have to have insight into your audience’s needs and you have to be able to meet these needs. 

You can create buyer personas for your target audience. These are fictional representations of an ideal consumer. A buyer’s persona will create their life, challenges, concerns, and how they make decisions. Ideally, your chosen affiliate strategy can help you with this process. 

Build Trust with Your Audience

The only way affiliate marketing campaigns will be successful is if your audience trusts you. Besides being authentic in your interactions, it’s essential to disclose any affiliate links you use. If you don’t do this, your credibility will be questioned. Trust is difficult to get back once it’s lost. 

You don’t have to be concerned that disclosing the use of an affiliate link will cause people not to click on them. Building trust and giving your honest opinion about products and services will allow your followers to happily click on the link knowing it supports you. 

The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) mandates the disclosure of using affiliate links. Many social media pages add some sort of notification, but you can also add your own disclaimer. If you choose to do this, keep it short and to the point. 

Using reputable affiliate partners is also a good way to build trust with your target market, and can help boost sales. 

Provide Value to Your Followers

The way you approach the marketing of the product or services you plan to link is important. Creating quality content is vital. You can make use of informative content when providing sales links, like comparing different products or services in your blog post. Informational texts will help build your authority and generate traffic from search engines. This, in turn, will help you build your audience. 

Be authentic and truthful in your approach when creating content. Generic content won’t attract  potential customers and won’t help you be a successful affiliate marketer. If you make a YouTube video or place a reel on Instagram, be true to yourself and the brands you choose to partner with.

Use Multiple Channels for Marketing

To truly be successful as an affiliate marketer, you need to utilize all possible social media channels. There are multiple social media pages you can cross-post onto. Look into the following:

  • Twitter
  • Facebook
  • Instagram
  • TikTok
  • Twitch
  • YouTube
Use Multiple Channels for Marketing

The platforms you use will depend on your specific content, and your target audience. For instance, Twitch offers live streams, but not every creator can make use of this platform to interact with their audience. Many affiliate marketers will cross-post content on multiple sites to reach as many potential customers as possible.

Track Your Progress and Adjust Your Approach

You can experiment with different affiliate strategies to refine the way you promote products and get your audience to click on sales links. This can be the content you create or the specific affiliate program you sign up for. 

Testing and adjusting your approach as you go on will help you refine the marketing strategies you use to get optimal results. Consider creating different types of content, for instance, a video about a product, a blog post comparing products, and an Instagram or Facebook giveaway. From this, you can track the interaction with the posts and see which method is most successful. 

Your affiliate partner should give you software to help track clicks on your affiliate link, or you can use your own. 

The Don’ts of Affiliate Marketing

There are numerous pitfalls to be aware of when setting up your affiliate strategy. Knowing what these are is the best way to ensure you don’t become a victim of these mistakes, and that your strategy yields the best results. Now that you know what to do, let’s take a look at aspects to avoid when planning your affiliate marketing content. 

Don’t Break the Rules

Make sure you follow the terms and conditions of the affiliate networks you choose to partner with. Make sure you know the rules and guidelines and understand what they expect from you. 

You can build long-term relationships with brands if you follow the rules, and it speaks to your integrity with your audience. Remember, trust is extremely important for any successful affiliate strategy. 

Don’t Spam Your Audience

When creating valuable content for your audience, the last thing you want to do is spam them with affiliate marketing links. Your audience is following you to get helpful information or even entertainment, and your marketing efforts can be futile if you overdo it. Placing too many links can make audiences feel like you’re pushing these products on them, and it will become spammy. 

Ideally, you would only want to place one or two links in a post. Another thing to avoid is to place an affiliate link in every post you make. Take a break from sales content every now and then and remember to be authentic with your content.

Most affiliate marketing programs ban the cloaking of sales links. Some SEO experts will say this is the way to go, but it can get you removed from affiliate campaigns. Use the URL that’s provided. 

Don’t Give Up

Affiliate marketing will take some time to grow. You have to build a dedicated audience and that will take time. Don’t give up too quickly. Stick it out, even if growth is slow. It will be worth it when you start seeing the income. 

10 Benefits of Affiliate Marketing

When you decide to start affiliate marketing, it may seem daunting. Thinking about generating more sales, building an affiliate website, and working on marketing techniques is a lot. Let’s look at ten benefits of affiliate marketing to keep you on track. 

  • Affiliate marketing allows you to extend your reach and increase your platform by thinking of new ways to create content and get new customers.
  • Once you’ve got your affiliate website up and running and an effective platform, affiliate marketing is a way to earn money with little effort. 
  • Affiliate marketing is a growing industry that’s grown more than 70% since 2018.
  • It allows you to make money from products and services you’re passionate about. 
  • Creating a referral link and communicating with your audience is not an overly complicated process, it just takes endurance.
  • When you choose affiliate programs you learn plenty about business and you can have fun!
  • Affiliates allow you to relate to your audience. It gives you specific topics to communicate about and get feedback on.
  • You get to be creative when you create content.
  • It’s a relatively easy industry to break into.
  • You can earn money.

There are so many ways you can have fun with partnerships in affiliate marketing. Besides the fact that you can make money, it allows you to be creative and learn new skills. 

Conclusion: Affiliate Marketing

Affiliate marketing is a fantastic way to earn a passive income, and it’s relatively easy to get into and grow. It does take time and effort to build your platform to be successful. There are plenty of things you can do to ensure successful affiliate marketing, starting with choosing the right affiliate marketing partners. 

Ensure that you understand the terms and conditions of the affiliates you choose and don’t break any rules. This includes cloaking your URLs, even if SEO experts tell you it’s the way to go. 

It’s crucial to build trust with your audience and potential customers. This includes providing the pros and cons of any products you review. You also build trust with the authenticity you have in the content you create. Never create content with the sole intent of selling a product and don’t overdo the marketing. This is also where the niche you choose comes in. If you don’t love what you’re selling, you won’t make sales. 

Find the best ways to track clicks on your links. Many affiliates will provide software to help you, or you can find your own. Make sure you track the links that were most popular and adjust your approach if links aren’t working. 

The most important part is to never give up! While the journey may take longer than you expected, and it takes a bit of effort, you’ll be grateful you stuck it out when you start seeing results!

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Chantelle started her career in IT before eventually finding her way into Marketing. This eventually became her passion, along with Digital Marketing, SEO, and Brand and Web Development. Today, she helps businesses find their voice and grow online.

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