Today I’m going to introduce the second phase of the Affiliate Business Model – SELECTION. I’ll go over some choices, or key decisions you’ll need to make concerning your affiliate business. I’ll walk you through each of them and make some recommendations, but by the end of the day, it’s really up to you.
Three Decisions for You to Make Today
First decision – What “market” will you target?
The first thing you need to do is choose a broad market or target audience to build your business around. An example of a market would be weight loss, and an example of a target audience would be those wanting to lose weight and/or get in shape.
Notice that I said choose a broad market or target audience – not a smaller niche. Instead of finding a niche, creating an offer for it, then rushing off to another niche, I go against the mainstream and target a broader audience.
Find a target audience and build your business around a core group of subscribers and site visitors by offering multiple offers.
You don’t need a hundred niches to make money online. All you need is one good market or target audience. We are going to make things easy and still make a lot of money doing it. Instead of looking for small niches, look for larger markets or target audiences and feed them multiple, very relevant offers.
The idea here is to find customers who will make purchases from you over and over again.
Long-term, you want to promote multiple, related offers to them.
Example: “Weight Loss”
Weight loss is a multibillion-dollar industry. There are millions of prospective customers out there who are looking to lose weight and get in shape. As an affiliate, you could begin by promoting a single product to this market. Then, over time you could promote a wide variety of “related” product.
- How to Tone Up Your Tummy
- One Minute Exercise Routines
- 7 Ways to Boost Your Metabolism
- Low-Calorie Cookbooks
- Walking Your Way to Better Health
- Yoga for Beginners
I hope you see that we could go on and on here with ideas. These products are all different from each other, but they are all related to our target audience’s interest, that of losing weight and getting in shape.
As an affiliate marketer, there are lots of different offers you could promote over a span of time where your customers will make many purchases from you.
Note: From here on out I’ll use the terms “market” and “target audience” interchangeably.
There are three simple criteria that I look at when deciding what target audience I want to focus on.
1) A target audience comfortable with spending money.
If the target audience isn’t comfortable with spending money, and, most generally, a good deal of money, then there is really no point in directing effort towards it. College Students aren’t a great target audience simply because most of them don’t have any money! On the other hand, golfers spend a ton each year on their hobby, they certainly qualify.
2) A target audience that can be presented with a variety of offers. If the target audience is limited in what you can sell to it, then again there's a red flag. You want to be able to present multiple offers related to the general theme of the target audience you’ve selected long-term for additional income streams.
3) A target audience that you are personally interested in (Optional). While this isn’t absolutely necessary, it certainly makes your research more enjoyable. If you can find a target audience that meets points 1 and 2 – AND you have a personal interest in it yourself, then you have made your choice. Having a personal interest, experience or knowledge of a particular target audience gives you a distinct advantage in building your business. It’s not necessary, but it certainly helps. You’ll enjoy yourself much more.
There are many, many “markets” that you can choose from. A few include: Arts and Crafts, Beauty, Business, Careers, Coaching, Computers and Technology, Consulting to Local Offline Businesses, Cooking, Dating, Disease and Illness, Health and Fitness, Hobbies, Affiliate Schooling, Leadership, Motivational, Parenting, Public Speaking, Recreation and Sports, Relationships, Religion, Romance, Success, Self-Help, Sports, Time Management, Weight Loss, and Writing.
Any of these are great markets. There are, quite obviously, many many more.
A Profitable Hint: If there is a successful magazine devoted to a target audience, then it’s probably a profitable market. Magazines are advertising driven and therefore a good indicator of the financial well-being of a specific market. If there are several successful magazines there is certainly money being made in that area and thus a good topic for you. Research Magazines.com, your local newsstand or the magazine rack at your favorite bookstore or library for ideas.
If you don’t already have a market in mind, choose one of these major divisions from Clickbank’s Marketplace.
Once you have figured out your market, it’s time for your second decision.
Decision #2: What “product” will you promote?
I’m a firm believer in promoting “information” products simply because there is a greater profit potential for you in most cases. So, for the purposes of our training, you’re going to identify a product or service that you can promote as an affiliate which sells an “information” product such as.
- Membership sites
- Special reports
- Coaching programs
- Software programs
- Information licensing
- Live Webinars and Seminars
The most common will be either an “ebook” or a “membership site”. Of course, you can choose anything you want to promote.
Now, before we talk about WHAT product or service to choose as your initial offer to promote, let me offer three suggestions on “kinds” of programs to promote. While you can promote ANY product or service you want as an affiliate, these three “kinds” are more lucrative long-term.
- High-Ticket Items (Good). Finding affiliate programs that sell products at a premium price is a good option simply because you get a larger commission per transaction, i.e., if you promote a $27 offer and earn 50% commission, you earn $13.50 per sale. If you promote a $997 offer and earn 50% commission, you earn $498.50 per sale. A big difference in earnings per transaction. However, there is a downside. It’s usually much easier to convince someone to pay $27 than it is $997.
- Multiple Offers (Better). Another option is to identify affiliate programs that offer MULTIPLE products that you get paid a commission on by referring a customer to them. In other words, if the customer buys product A from your initial promotion and then, through follow-ups, the customer buys products B, C, D and so forth from the vendor, then you receive a commission from those sales as well.
- Recurring Income (Best). What I consider to be the best in terms of what “kind” of affiliate program to promote are those that RE-BILL their customers regularly. These “subscription” programs afford you the opportunity to earn a commission EVERY TIME the customer is billed. So, if you promote a membership site and a customer joins, you get an immediate commission from the initial sale. But, it doesn’t end there. You also get another commission every time the customer gets re-billed for as long as they remain active. A good example of this is the membership site at Wealthy Affiliate (https://retireelifestyle.com/WealthyAffiliate). As a member/affiliate you earn 50% for each initial sale you produce when someone joins the site through your referral link. And you also earn 50% EVERY MONTH they remain active.
As you prepare to make a decision about what product or service to promote as an affiliate, I’d encourage you to consider these three “kinds” of programs to join. Now, there are four additional elements you should look for in choosing an affiliate program to join.
- Payment. Look for programs with a proven track record of reliable tracking and timely payments. They should have a clear pay structure with specific information on the compensation you’ll receive: commission amount, payment schedule, tracking information, form of payment, terms, etc.
- Potential. Seek out programs that have a continually growing product line. As markets become saturated and products become dated, it’s important that new releases are available to expand your revenue options.
- Promotion. You’ll want to make sure the affiliate program you join has LOTS of ready-made promotional materials, especially rebrandable content (i.e., articles, reports, etc). Don’t settle for programs that offer a few solo emails and banner ads. You need as much ready-made CONTENT as you can get for distribution to your market.
- Profit. Obviously, it all comes down to profit. Look for sites that rank highly in sales volume, have sales processes that convert well, produce back-end offers and (preferably) are one of the three “kinds” of offers mentioned above.
So, with all of that being said.
Where can you find an affiliate program to join?
There are a lot of places to find affiliate programs, but in the interest of time and convenience, let me just identify what many consider to be the best.
Clickbank’s Marketplace. One of the reasons that I like Clickbank’s marketplace is because they have current ranking for the affiliate programs indexed based on a unique formula that indicates the overall health of the program. If you’ve used their index to choose a market, simply click on the market link at the site and you’ll find many programs. Generally, but not always, the sites ranked towards the top are your best options. All of the programs listed in their marketplace have affiliate tracking done by Clickbank, one of the web’s longest running and most used services. Clickbank makes sure you get paid promptly for your promotional efforts. Visit (https://www.clickbank.com/marketplace) and begin exploring the listings today.
So, now you have a great place to find affiliate programs to join.
That brings us to the third and final decision you need to make.
Decision #3: What “domain” will you purchase and register?
We’re going to setup a website soon and you’ll operate from it as your Affiliate base over the next year (and beyond). But, rather than have you use someone else’s site for your blog (i.e., SomeAffiliateProgram.com/WordPressBlog), you’re going to promote your own site (i.e., www.YourSite.com). More on this in another post.
Note: Don’t know what a “blog” is? Don’t worry, everything will be explained in detail in future posts. It’s easy to setup, requires absolutely no experience, and is free.
None of that really needs to be important to you at this point, except for the fact that you need to choose and register a domain name.
This will cost you around $20 for a year’s registration.
-You can register your domains here: https://retireelifestyle.com/domains. This is a service offered under Wealthy Affiliate, which I highly recommend. You WON’T be over-charged here and their hosting is free with your Premium membership.
There is a lot written on how to choose a domain name. However, I’d like to propose something very easy and logical in terms of choosing a domain name. It’s a simple formula.
Topic + suffix = domainname.com
That is, you take a keyword or phrase related to your target market (i.e., Affiliate,
Diet, Inspiration, Affiliate Business, Travel, etc.) and you merge it with one of the suffixes below to create a domain name you can register.
- Let’s look at an example.
EXAMPLE: If you wanted to promote “Affiliate Business”, you could simply attach one of the suffixes above to create domain names such as these: AffiliateBusinessWorld.com, AffiliateBusinessWatch.com, AffiliateBusinessTrend.com, AffiliateBusinessConnect.com, AffiliateBusinessOnline.com, AffiliateBusinessTimes.com, AffiliateBusinessTalk.com, AffiliateBusinessHelps.com, AffiliateBusinessHowTo.com, AffiliateBusinessSuccess.com, AffiliateBusinessResults.com, AffiliateBusinessTips.com, AffiliateBusinessSecrets.com, or AffiliateBusinessReview.com.
As a note, I don’t know if any of these sites are already taken or not and I have no affiliation with them, nor do I endorse them, I’m simply offering you some examples.
I know we’ve covered a lot of information today. If you use my recommendations it should only take you a few hours at most to get everything done.
Do these things NOW: Choose a market, join an affiliate program and register your domain.
Congratulations! You’ve completed the second phase of the Affiliate Business Model — SELECTION. Continue on to Phase 3 – SETUP here.
If you’d like to discuss anything covered in today’s post in more detail, I recommend you use the forum at Wealthy Affiliate where many of our members live and breathe this stuff. You can sign up to Wealthy Affiliate for FREE.
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To your success,