How to Make Money with Affiliate Marketing

Affiliate marketing has a lot of global appeal. I mean, who doesn’t want to make money while they sleep! The thought of click-clacking away at your next digital payday from some sandy beach in the South of “who knows where”, raking in remote revenue while roaming the world, is a tempting tweak from the 9 to 5 slog.

However, all good things come with a “But” and here’s ours. 😁 The short answer is… Yes. You can make a good living from affiliate marketing but, it’s less a rapid rise to fame and fortune and more a slow burn that generates gradual returns over time. 

First up. Come in knowing there’ll be a lot to learn with some trial and error along the way. However, once you start to get the upper hand in online advertising, you won’t look back. 

We can’t give you a sure-fire formula for success, because there isn’t one, and if there was, it would be old news by tomorrow. 

What we can do is send a few industry-specific tips your way to get you into the affiliate marketing loop and well on the road to success. And, as always, the best place to start is with the basics.

The biggest mistake a new affiliate can make

A while back, We asked a few affiliate heavy-hitters what they thought the biggest mistake a new affiliate can make straight out the door, and the answers were surprisingly similar. affLIFT affiliate forum founder Luke Kling had this to say…

AffLIFT Affiliate marketer-Luke Kling

The biggest mistake first-timers make is giving up too quickly. People come in with the wrong mindset. If they don’t get a positive ROI from the get-go, they get discouraged and move on. 

The best way to avoid this is to come in knowing that affiliate marketing is not going to be a quick thing and that there is going to be a lot to learn. Knowing how to track, test, and generate good content is vital to your success. Pro tip? Join affiliate communities and ask the right questions. You’ll understand more in half the time and, you’ll get to learn from the best in the business.

Luke Kling

Affiliate Marketing Expert, AffLIFT

Affiliate Forums, Tools, and Tracking Platforms. 

When it comes to affiliate marketing. The more quality tools that you utilize, the better the results. When it comes to campaign tracking, we’d recommend signing up to platforms such as RedTrackBeMob, or Voluum.

As far as forums are concerned. You heard it from Luke. Check out AffLIFT and find your affiliate tribe, or you can try out STM Forum

At the end of the day, the more you know, the better off you’ll be. For the full article and more tips and tricks on affiliate marketing for beginners, check out the full Experts Edge interview with Luke Kling 

So, let’s dive into the only definition you need to get to grips with the world of online advertising and revenue generation. 

What is Affiliate Marketing?

We’ll keep this short and to the point. Affiliate marketing is the process by which an affiliate earns a commission for advertising a company’s products or services. That’s pretty much it! 

The sales/clicks or conversions that an affiliate generates are tracked via affiliate links 

and, at the end of a month, the business pays out the affiliate according to the amount of traffic and/or sales they’ve generated. 

An affiliate marketer’s main goal is to drive sales and generate online revenue for themselves. 

Okay, easy enough. But how do you go about doing this? Well, you need to create eye-catching online ads that get seen by the right audiences. 

To find this audience (or traffic source), your ads need to display on a similar site that ties in with the product or service that you’re marketing. This is the point where you either pair up with an online advertising platform like say… Adcash 😁👌 and create/market your own ads, or you can opt for an existing affiliate program/walled garden like Facebook or Google. 

So, let’s get into it. What are the four main steps you need to effectively advertise online? We’ll start with… 

Step 1: Finding your affiliate network

Finding the right product or service to sell is where it all starts. How you go about doing this though, is pretty simple. There are a number of affiliate networks that curate and update massive catalogs of every imaginable product and/or service under the sun. ☀️

They do the legwork of finding and listing the products/services that businesses want to advertise, and all you need to do is pick one and start marketing it online. If you’re looking for somewhere to start, you can check out Mobidea, MaxBounty, or ClickDealer (to name a few).

Below is an example of what a product dashboard might look like. Once you’ve signed up to a network of your choice and filled in a few fields (like the proposed source of traffic, target region, etc.) you’ll head to the dashboard. From there, you can scroll through the products, find one that sparks your imagination, and start to market it.  

Adcash - How to Make Money with Affiliate Marketing - Mobidea Affiliate Network Dashboard

But, knowing what you want to advertise depends on the market you want to be associated with. This is where verticals (or business sectors) come into play.

Step 2: Find your vertical

A vertical is a fancy term for the market or business sector you’d like to advertise in. It pays to advertise in a vertical you’re somewhat passionate and/or knowledgeable about.

When it comes time to plot and design your creatives, if you’re already a fan of the product, you’ll have a better idea of what your end-user might be looking out for and how to reel them in with your awesome advertising.😁 😍 ✌️

We asked a few top affiliates what verticals they’ve been paying attention to lately (especially with a few key verticals taking a turn for the worse in the wake of COVID), and this is what they had to say…

Verticals with strong increases in 2020 have been…

Video on Demand (VOD) 🍿
Online Gaming 🕹️
Dating ❤️
Gambling 🎰
Food Delivery 🍔

Verticals with a noticeable decrease in 2020 have been…

Travel ✈️
Sports Betting ⚽
Car Sharing 🚗
Sweepstakes 🎟️
E-Commerce 🛒

Sectors aside, head over to Adconf and check out more Insights to boost your ad profit 

So, with the above in mind, pick the market you’d like to advertise in and generate killer creatives to draw in the best traffic sources. But, always make sure you research your chosen vertical thoroughly so that you go in with a plan every time you start a new campaign. 

Step 3: Sign up to an advertising platform 

An advertising platform acts as the middle man between the online advertiser (the affiliate) and the site their ads will be displayed on (the publisher). This platform pairs your creatives with the most appropriate website, ensuring your ads are always seen by the right audience (traffic source).

There’s a whole host of advertising platforms to choose from, but, a little later on  we’ll be taking you through the tips you need to optimize on the Adcash DSP platform (for… pretty obvious reasons 😁👌)

In short, a quality ad platform gives you…

The ability to reach global audiences

Whereby you gain access to an exclusive network of publishers (website owners)

Lock tight, anti-ad fraud technology

Where cutting edge anti-fraud technology saves online advertising an estimated $12,000,000 a year, thus protecting you from the industry’s biggest threat.

Find out all you need to know to Protect Yourself from Digital Ad Fraud in 2020 and beyond. 

Time and money saved on valuable resources

Where state-of-the-art “Smart Bidding”  and other advanced features optimize your returns from the get-go, by eliminating as much of the manual work as possible. 

Step 4: Create eye-catching Landing Pages and Ad formats 

Eye-catching, “immersive” ads and landing pages are the first line of defense between gaining a conversion or losing a conversion. Getting your creatives pitch-perfect is an art form in and of itself and comes with time. But there are a few things to include when crafting your creatives that can draw in your audience and drive your message forward. 

For strong converting landing pages make sure the below components are in place

  • A high, quality, visually appealing background with complementing images that catch the imagination of the user and urges them to read further. As a general rule, always try to avoid using generic creatives that blend into the background
  • A headline that speaks to the essence of the product and instills a sense of “surprise and delight” in the user.
  • A description of the offer or product and, most importantly,  what the customer stands to gain from clicking through to your page. Include any information that will help in making a decision by the user to convert. 
  • A strong call-to-action that is able to drive conversations with the least possible effort. Hard selling words like “buy now”, “start now”, “get this deal”, or anything similar tends to work well. 

If you’re stuck for where to start and looking for a little inspiration to get you on the road to crafting legendary landing pages, try out Purelander, Instapage, or Unbounce.  In general, the software you’ll come into contact with allows you to create and generate eye-catching landing pages in the shortest possible time, with tonnes of different templates to choose from. 

Get the full scoop on How to Create a Landing Page that Works and start to generate eye-catching creatives in the quickest possible time. 

As far as ad formats go, there are a few to choose from. Each with their own set of unique benefits. 

The Pop-Under format has been drawing in a lot of good conversions lately, as well as Native Traffic, and while any of these formats have the potential to convert (when used for max impact), we’ll pay special attention to Interstitial ads, the professed Cure for “Banner Blindness”.  

These interactive ads appear while a web page or app is loading, acting as the transition point between different types of content and different styles of user activity

Some of the benefits include…

  • A Higher click-through rate
  • Stronger messaging/visuals
  • A longer (5 seconds) countdown window
  • Access to direct traffic sources

Campaign optimization tips for the Adcash team 

So there you have it. Four easy to implement tips that will get you on the road to hard-hitting, strong converting online advertising campaigns. Now that you’ve got the basics covered, we’ll share a few more conversion/optimization tips specific to the Adcash platform to rocket your returns. 

But, it’s hard to partner with the right support unless you know what you’re getting into. So, how can we help bring your traffic to life? 

Well, to start with, we ensure you get a direct flow of premium traffic, straight from the source and sent straight to your door, with our exclusively curated and tailored network of publishers. Added to that, we’ll make sure we only show the most relevant ads to users, ensuring a highly targeted approach every time. Our stellar Ad fraud technology goes above and beyond, eliminating fraudulent traffic and bothersome bots whilst protecting your campaigns from any and all external interference. 

Right. Introductions out the way, 😁 here’s what you need to know to expand and refine your online advertising campaigns. 

Choose the right targeting

We’ve got a few different targeting options to choose from and an ocean of opportunities for budding advertisers. We suggest creating different test campaigns for the same offer. This will help you pinpoint what ads your target audience resonates with the most. For example, you could opt for…

Web category targeting (with a high CPM bid).
This option lets you target your product on a site most similar to what you’re advertising. You’ll also need to bid a little higher here to make sure your ad gets seen first, and avoid being steamrolled by the competing ads on display. 

User interest targeting

Here, the Adcash “user interest” database will run tests to find the most applicable audience engagement for your campaigns, matching your ads to what they are looking for. Again, as this traffic sourcing is granular in nature, you’re going to want to bid a little higher in order to get the best results.

Adcash - DSP Platform - User Interest Targeting Feature

Avoid spending your entire budget on one source

Large sources of traffic can and do destroy an entire campaign in a short period of time. Spread your budget evenly with the zone capping tool. This will give you control over all incoming traffic and at the same time, help you spread and limit the maximum number of impressions per source. 

This is where cost per acquisition (CPA) targeting comes into play. This fully automated, optimization algorithm will generate the best results for your campaign and spread your budget evenly where it counts the most. 

You’ll then be able to target the maximum number of traffic sources without spending your entire budget on websites with large volumes and expensive traffic. 

This, in turn, will help you better optimize your online advertising campaign as you go. 

Adcash DSP Platform - Weekly Distribution Feature

Get in Touch 

Okay, that’s a lot of information to digest so quickly, but…, that’s why we’re always here to help. 😁 If you’re just starting out on your affiliate journey and would like us to take you through the ins and outs of campaign optimization in a little more detail, or you’ve been around the block a while and looking for a new angle to maximize your returns, please feel free to get in touch with us anytime. We’re always happy to help and our expert team would love to share the latest and greatest tips to craft strong conversions and maximize ROI. You can reach out to us right here.

That’s it for now. Best of luck on road to affiliate superstardom!! 

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