The world is social these days. As an affiliate marketer, you’re well aware of just how important it is to be where your audience is. It follows that you need to be present on social media. That’s where your audience is likely to be hanging out right now.
In years past, you could really run a pretty strong affiliate marketing business using simple mini money sites, blogs, and things like that. If you targeted long tail keywords (especially product focused keywords), then it was pretty easy to rank and earn as an affiliate marketer.
It’s not quite that easy anymore. I won’t say it’s impossible—but it’s nowhere near as easy as it used to be.
It’s important to rely on more than just the search engines to be found. The work you do can’t and shouldn’t exist in a vacuum. You have to be where the people are.
This is something the search engines themselves know. Indeed, social activity is an important factor in ranking. That’s something you simply can’t ignore. Not only can you get direct exposure for the things you’re promoting, but you can also improve your chances of ranking in the search engines.
I’ll say it again—social media is something you really need to pay attention to if you want to earn more as an affiliate or get started in business as an affiliate for the very first time.
What Social Media Can Mean For Your Business
When I talk about social media, I’m talking about sites like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest, Instagram, Tumblr, and others. There are new social opportunities popping up all the time—Periscope (owned by Twitter) is one of the newest at the time I’m writing this.
It’s in your best interest to figure out where your audience is hanging out on social media. It’s not only important to know where your audience is registered, but it’s important to know where they’re most active.
Follow the Trail Of Social Media Success
Follow the trail of other businesses and affiliates that are successful on social media. Which sites are they using and earning from?
No matter which niche you’re in, it’s likely that you’ll find affiliates who are really active on Facebook. They might have a popular Facebook page or Facebook group or something like that. Facebook is a great place to start.
The very best social affiliate marketers are probably making sales of products as affiliates in ways you wouldn’t even notice upfront. They aren’t just spamming these sites with their affiliate links left and right.
The best affiliates build up their audience. They take that Facebook page or Facebook group or whatever it is and build up a responsive and loyal audience. They share things that audience is interested in learning more about. They answer questions, ask questions, and just generally show themselves to be important and loyal members of that audience. They become an authority to their followers.
Again, they don’t just post about their projects all the time. But, they probably do share of themselves. They might talk about things that are going on in their life or business. They share about things they’re working on.
Also, instead of directly promoting the heck out of things on these social platforms, they’re working hard to build the right way. They likely funnel traffic back to an email list. They know that social media sites might not be here in the years to come—at least not in the way they exist today. So, they get their followers on an email list.
They probably build their email list by giving things away for free. In a way that benefits the reader, they frequently direct people to get something for free and join their email list.
It’s only then that they promote anything. And, they continue to build a relationship with those on their list.
They combine affiliate marketing, social media, and email marketing in a really masterful way.
Who’s doing this in your niche? It can be helpful to take notes to come up with ideas for how you might use social media to promote products as an affiliate.
Get Started Using Social Media as an Affiliate
Note that this isn’t something you should just plan to do sometime in the future. Take the time to build it into your schedule now. Doing that can really pay off for you in major ways.
Get your social accounts set up, if you haven’t already. Make sure you brand yourself, even as an affiliate.
Try to get consistent handles/names on each of the sites you join. Note that it’s not all that important to be on all of the social sites—it’s best if you focus only on the ones that really matter for your business.
That’s the benefit of doing some digging beforehand. You can figure out which matter for your business and which aren’t quite as important. Most niches can benefit from being on Facebook, I believe.
Work to build your audience. You want to build real relationships over time.
You shouldn’t waste time when you’re on social media. Now that you have the goal of building your list and promoting products as an affiliate to those you meet and find on social media, it’s important to treat this like a real business.
When you’re on social media, make sure it counts.
Share the posts of others. Post things your followers will really appreciate. Talk about what’s going on with you and things that will interest your followers about the industry/niche, etc.
Post hints about products you’re looking at or reviewing.
When you do link to things, don’t link using straight affiliate links. Instead, link to freebies you’re giving away to build your list. The promotion comes later.
Make sure you’re doing this in a way that’s exciting for your audience. Remember that they’re seeing a lot of other stuff on social media so the things you’re posting really should stand out and interest people.
Continue To Build Your Audience
Your goal is to make money by promoting things as an affiliate. That means continuing to build your audience.
You should try to make posts others will want to share. Grow your community and following using these platforms.
Social media is a very quickly changing landscape. It can really benefit you to keep up with the changes. You might become an early adopter to new social sites you have a strong feeling might really take off within your audience. If you’re there first, after you’ve established yourself elsewhere, it can really help solidify you as a leader.
Build relationships. Build a solid following of brand evangelists.
If you do that, it will be easy to get people on your list and promote affiliate products to them. They’ll trust your reviews and recommendations because they’ll have come to know, like and trust you over time. This is great for business –and it can leave the door open for creating your own products or joint venturing with other product creators in the future so you can grow your business and income.
Social Media Can Be Great For Affiliate Marketers
Note that I’ve recommended you don’t just use social media to post affiliate links. As tempting as that might be, it’s a terrible decision for business. It won’t lead to anything good.
What will lead to good is if you follow the advice I’ve laid out for you here, to best use social media as an affiliate marketer. This is the way to grow your affiliate business using social media. This is how you can build a real, sustainable business using social media.