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If you’ve clicked on this page, then you probably are looking for a way out of getting stuck in traffic going to your 9 to 5 job that’s not even a little bit rewarding. What if you can start a side hustle that gives you an impressive amount of passive income and potentially gets you away from the hustle and bustle of an unsatisfying job?

If that’s the case then you’ll want to know about affiliate marketing.

This method of making income can take you from hating your work schedule to feeling satisfaction when you get out of bed in the morning and not have to go out into traffic. If this sounds like something you’ll like, then affiliate marketing is right for you. But just like everything, you’ll want to know how to successfully get into it with no hiccups. That’s where this article comes in for you. Keep reading for an overview of what exactly affiliate marketing is and a step-by-step guide to getting into it.

What is Affiliate Marketing

Affiliate marketing is a method of marketing someone’s product through links in your social media, blog, YouTube channel description box, etc. In this process, you as a content creator, add links to a merchant’s products. Your followers or readers will then see the link and click on the URL. The customer is then sent to the site that’s selling the product. If the customer buys the product you sent them to, then the company verifies this transaction and pays you a commission for the purchase. Pretty simple right?

It’s the reason affiliate marketing has been growing and growing as a multi-billion business. With 84% of publishers turning to affiliate marketing and affiliate marketing spending being at 8.2 billion by 2022, it’s the right time for you to get into the game and start growing your income.

Who is Involved in Affiliate Marketing?

As you can see, affiliate marketing is not being run just by you. There is a very simple network of your parties that helps you scale your income and get the commission that you’re owed for the purchases. These 4 groups include:

1. The Seller or Merchant

2. The Affiliate or Publisher

3. The Consumer

4. The Network or Program

These are important parties with individual responsibilities and if you plan to get into affiliate marketing, understanding each role is vital to becoming a successful affiliate marketer. So, here is a quick rundown of the 4 groups below.

The Seller.

The first group of individuals in affiliate marketing is the seller or merchant. This individual is the one who makes the products or services to be sold to the customer. They can be anything from a solo entrepreneur to a small business or a large and established company. They could sell anything, including products or services for commercial or home buildings. It also doesn’t matter if they sell digital or physical goods. If there is a link to a purchase page where the consumer can buy the product, then you can get a commission for it.

The Affiliate

The next group, where you land, is the affiliate. This individual’s primary task is to promote the product or service of the seller and guide more customers to their site to grow their sales. Therefore, affiliates and sellers are primarily the butter and bread of the marketing process. Both groups help each other out by supporting one another through the promoting and selling process. Affiliate marketers, also known as publishers, can be varied just like the seller as well. You can find solo publishers that own a blog or a social media profile. You can also find large affiliate marketing companies who gather hundreds to thousands of money from marketing a seller’s products in just one month.

The Consumer.

But it’s not just the seller and affiliate that’s important here. Of course, the marketing program would be nothing without the consumers who buy the product or services. This group helps you get closer to getting your commission. With each promotion and clicked URL and purchase, the consumer not only helps the publisher get a commission off the sale but also buys a product or service that they didn’t know they needed. Your role as a publisher is to make sure that you push along the consumer through the buyer’s journey, taking them from someone interested and converting them to the next step.

The Network / Program

There’s a little debate over whether the network or program is essential to the rest of the groups. But even if it’s not, having an affiliate network or program can be very beneficial for being a successful affiliate marketer. This group is the third party between you and the seller or merchant. Since finding products and services to promote as a publisher can be hard to do, the affiliate marketplace will make it possible where all their products on the site are available with an affiliate link to promote, making the search easier for you. One marketplace that you’re probably very familiar with is the Amazon store. The company makes it that you can promote the products that are on their online marketplace and provide you with a link to use.

Importance of Affiliate Marketing

So, why is affiliate marketing so successful and why should you get into it? The main reason affiliate marketing is important is because it helps every party with their own goals. Affiliate marketing helps the seller grow their sales and provides them another way of promoting their product or service. If you know a little about marketing, you’ll know that there are a variety of ways that a seller can promote their product.

From content marketing comprising inbound and outbound SEO techniques to social media or advertising campaigns, there’s almost no end to how a company can get its product out to the public. Affiliate marketing is just another method to add to the list since it has great returns. And that’s why being a seller is very important. You are essentially generating leads for the seller and corralling them through the next steps of the marketing funnel. And since you have an important task such as that, you’ll never be out of products to promote.

Types of Affiliates

Now that you know the ins and outs of affiliate marketing and who does what during the process, you probably want to know what type of publisher you can be to become successful. Well, I can tell you that you can be a successful affiliate marketer through any type of content. Whether you own a podcast or a social media page, you can build your income through each. Of course, every channel has its own audience and methods that will work for one and not the other, but the simple process of creating and promoting products and services is very simple. But in case you need it, here are a few different ways that you can promote your seller’s products and services to potential customers.

1. Social Media Influencer

Social media influencers are probably one of the first affiliate marketers that you can think of. This is probably because you’ve seen a post promoting a product with a link to a product page in the post's body. This is exactly what affiliate marketing is and how you would do it for your own social media page. Simply find a product to promote, take a picture of it and share it on your Instagram story, highlights, TikTok, or any other social network. Put down the link in the post and watch for your commission to come.

2. Blogger

If a social media influencer didn’t come to mind, then a blogger is probably the one you’re thinking of. Go to any type of blog, whether it’s a lifestyle or business blog, and look through the page, you’re very likely to find a link or two promoting a product that they want you to click on. One benefit to blogging as an affiliate is that you can take more time than on social media to promote and talk about a specific product. This way, your followers can get a better picture of the product or service and be a bit more inclined to click on the link and buy from the seller. Consumers will research a product before buying it, and social media posts can’t give out in-depth information because of the word limit. So, be that step for them and use blogging to educate and convince them that the product is worth buying.

3. Email List

You can also use a growing email list to exclusively promote your affiliate links. Instead of putting them all on your blogs or social media, you can grow your email list by enticing your followers to subscribe to your emails by providing them with affiliate links that will help them make a part of their personal or professional lives more convenient. You can do this in a form of a newsletter, welcome series, or just as an email campaign. Followers will see it as a reward for subscribing and you can get more subscribers and possibly more commissions.

How to become an Affiliate Marketer

Although all the information I have given you may sound like a lot to take in, I can also reassure you that becoming an affiliate marketer is not at all complicated. In fact, you can become one today! There are only a few simple steps that you should do to get started, but once you get that down, you can begin growing your audience and getting more commissions from sellers. To get you on the right foot, here is a short step-by-step guide to getting started as an affiliate.

Step 1: Choose a niche.

The first thing you need to do is to choose a niche. This step is very important because it will determine what type of products you choose to promote to your audience. You can go into mommy products, digital software, or tech. Whatever you choose, make sure it’s something that’s not only fun to create content for but also that it’s a niche that is profitable as well. And even though you can be a publisher without choosing a niche, consider having one if you want to build a stable income without worrying about the lack of clicks on the URL. For example, digital marketing products will probably get more clicks than links to novels, so choose carefully.

Step 2: Choose your platform.

Next, you’ll want to choose the platform that you’ll promote your affiliate links. Most people use their primary platform whether they are a YouTuber or Social media influencer. You’ll want to see what platform your most comfortable using and which one your audience for the specific niche is hanging around. Remember that each platform differs greatly from the other and what might work for one may not work for the other, so choose your platform and do some preliminary research on how to get the most out of that platform to sell more products.

Step 3: Sign Up for an Affiliate Program.

While this option is optional in most cases, also consider signing up for an affiliate program of a company that’s related to your niche. Each program offers different products to promote and the percentage of commission that you’ll get from them. For example, Social Media Calendar has an affiliate program that gives you a 35% commission for each sale. It’s a great way to easily promote a seller’s products without searching to see if a certain company’s products are available for affiliate links.

Step 4: Review Products in Your Niche.

Now that you have a product to promote and a platform to promote it on, you can now review the products or highlight them throughout your content and provide the affiliate link for your readers and followers. You don’t have to just promote the link on one platform, if you have multiple such as a social media page plus a YouTube channel, you can promote the product or service on both. By doing this, you can reach more of your audience and ensure that more people will click on the link and buy the product. Again, remember to always state that you’ll get a commission for the sale to your followers.

Grow Your Affiliate Platform.

Now you know what an affiliate program is and how you can start your journey as a successful publisher. Affiliate marketing is a great way to get away from a draining 9 to 5 job and begin doing something that you’ll love. The best thing about it is that you don’t have to be a professional marketer to become successful. All you need is a platform and a product to promote, and you can grow your income in no time.

If you want to start your affiliate marketing journey, then you can sign up for Social Media Calendar’s Affiliate Program. Don’t settle for your boring job. Get into affiliate marketing and start building your audience.