One of the ways to make a consistent, passive income out of your content is affiliate marketing. If you have a blog or social media channel with followers, all it takes is one affiliate promotion to get a steady stream of money into your account. This is provided you have enough influence to push your followers or readers into action.
But there’s more to affiliate marketing than signing up to the program and promoting your affiliate link. If it’s that easy, then all affiliates would have made money. But there’s more there is to it. It is about the type of content that you create and how well you promote that content. In the end, it is how convincing your content is in compelling people to buy.
In this article, you’ll learn 7 tips on how to create affiliate marketing content that converts.
Tip #1: Work with the top content formats
If you create content for affiliate marketing right off the bat, you’ll find that you’ll face tons of failures before you can succeed. But before you do that, you can do well by using proven content formats to increase the chances of success of your affiliate marketing content. These proven content formats are already proven to convert. There is no guesswork needed..
Once you try to use these affiliate marketing content formats, you’ll find how powerful they can be. Here is a brief explanation of each kind below.
1 – Simple Product Review
This is the classic content format for affiliate marketing. It involves a brief description on a product as well as an opinion on how it works. The review also contains the advantages and disadvantages of the product along with the reviewer’s point-of-view and recommendations. What makes a product review special is it provides an honest opinion about the product. It is important to share not only the good points but the bad points as well. This shows that the review is authentic and not paid. You are not selling a product as you would in a commercial. Instead, you will lay out the pros and cons of a product and let the reader decide if the product is for them.
Since you show the different facets of the product which includes the positive and negative, it makes your review more real and believable. This means that you have the reader’s best interest in mind. You care more about them than the product.
Is showing disadvantages detrimental to your product review? No. It’s not. In fact, you can show that these disadvantages are not a big deal by showing some advantages that counter it. You can also show some workarounds.
2 – Video Review
One of the drawbacks of product reviews is that it is just a huge block of text. In this generation where the audience would rather skim rather than read, it is important to give them a more engaging form of content. This is the reason why video reviews work better.
In a video review, the appearance of the product as well as how it works are featured. The prospect will not only see the product, they will understand how it works. With this type of content, you no longer need a long explanation on what the product can do. The video will do all of the explaining.
PRO TIP: Instead of doing the review yourself. It helps to enlist the help of influencers. Influencer marketing is quite common in video product reviews. It is about hiring or asking an influencer to review a product for you. What happens is that an influencer reviews the product by demonstrating it to their followers and this often results in a boost of sales. What makes this approach effective is the existing relationship of influencers with their followers. Since their followers trust their recommendations, they are far more likely to buy the recommended product.
3 – Tutorial
While video is effective, there are people who like to read. For these people, a tutorial may work better. But it is not enough to merely teach in an article. It is important to be as detailed as possible and include screenshots. It is important that the tutorial is able to fully demonstrate how a product works.
A tutorial is suggested for products in the business or self development niche. It can create a general article like ‘How to Be More Productive’ and it will have affiliate links to productivity applications. The same is true for methods like ‘How to rank on the first page of the search engines’. You can then promote affiliate links of search engine optimization tools.
4 – Top Lists
Another not-so-obvious way to promote your affiliate links is to use Top Lists. These are lists that include the top 10 useful tools or products in the niche. For example, you can create a ‘Best Hunting Bow’ List It is a great way to promote multiple products at the same time without being pushy.
The great thing about Top Lists is that you get to tell your audience about your opinion on an array of products. Since you are tackling multiple products, you have plenty of opportunities to promote different affiliate links.
NOTE: Just be sure that your readers know that you have included affiliate links in your content. You can put a note at the beginning of your content that it includes affiliate links.
5 – Case Study
Even more in-depth than a review is a case study. This is where you do more than describe the product. Instead, there is an element of time. You use a product for a certain period of time and you report the benefits and drawbacks. It works for products that need some time to work. Take skin care products for example. Simply applying it will not work. You will have to wait weeks and months to see the effect. The same is true for digital products or coaching. It takes a while for the knowledge to sit in. Plus, it must be implemented for it to work. This implementation process can then be captured into a case study.
Case studies work because it gives a more detailed review of the product. It shows how a product works over time or after implementation.
6 – Curated Lists
Curated lists are more common than you think. You’ll find that in-depth guides or resource posts usually contain a series of links. This can be quite useful for affiliate links as well provided that the content is still useful.
It is important to note that curated lists or resources doesn’t have to be a collection of links. Instead, it can be useful content. It can have steps with paragraphs then it can have a list of suggested links in the end. It will be more effective when it is done this way. This is because the readers will be more encouraged to click on the links.
Tip #2: State Your Personal Opinion
Many affiliate marketers are afraid to state their opinion on a product review. They usually limit the review to a description of the product and a list of pros and cons. The problem with this type of review is that it is already done by your competition. If you will only do what your competition is doing then you will only get the same results. The key is to have a different approach. In today’s age, people pay attention to real reviews. These are reviews of people who have personally tested the product for themselves. In this review, you should state your real opinion about the product and be transparent about whether you like it or not.
This approach works for more than just written and video reviews. It is also important for product comparisons and in depth guides. You should be able to show what you really think about the product as you use it.
Tip #3: Think of Your Readers
It is important to have some knowledge of customer personas before you begin. This will help you know what your readers want before you even create your content. The problem with ecommerce marketing sellers or other online sellers is that they create content for their own benefit. They think that if they create content that shows how good their product is, it will work. Here’s the thing. Your customer is probably bombarded with marketing messages everyday. They are tired of seeing brands telling their customers about how good they are. No Shopify affiliate app, referral software or ecommerce podcast can help you. They need something else. They need a brand that understands their needs.
Fortunately, understanding your customers is easy. Instead of guessing about what they like. You can always ask them. There is a reason why customer surveys are used by top brands. It because it helps them to get to know their customers better.
If you do this, you can create content that will target your reader’s needs. By doing this, your content will be much more effective in encouraging them to buy.
Tip #4: Promote Products Based on Demand
You cannot become a successful affiliate marketer if you promote products that don’t have demand. Soon, you’ll find that hardly anyone will buy from your affiliate link. It doesn’t matter if you think that the product is amazing. If your readers don’t share the same sentiment, then it is useless.
With this, it is important to research the affiliate products that you plan to promote. You can do this by researching the keywords in Google keyword planner to see if there is any demand for it. The product should have at least 100 searches for it to be beneficial. Be sure to search for variations of the name as well.
Also, a Google search will reveal how well the product is talked about. You may see some reviews in blogs or forums about it. Keep this in mind as you determine the real demand for the product. When you find that the product has a real demand, that’s the only time that you should promote it.
Tip #5: Incorporate Products into Reviews Naturally
Here’s the problem with product reviews. Often, the customer can see that the goal is the promotion right off the bat. This is not good for it means that your content is geared towards selling. No one wants to get sold to a product that they are not ready to buy.
Now, I am not saying that all product reviews are not effective. With long tail keywords, it can work extremely well. This is because the people who will search for a product with long tail keywords are already decided on buying it. But it is better to incorporate a product review in an in-depth guide, a tutorial or a story. It is more effective that way.
Tip #6: Offer a Bonus
A common practice among affiliate marketers is to offer bonuses. This gives the buyer a reason to buy through you. Usually, products that allow affiliates already have hundreds and thousands of reviews. But the buyer will often go to the merchant site to buy. So how can you get them to use your affiliate link? That’s simple. All you need to do is provide some bonuses. Just be sure that the bonuses are attractive enough that it will convince them to buy.
Tip #7: Stick to a Niche
Planning to become an affiliate marketer? That’s good. But instead of reviewing random product that you love, it may be best to stick to a niche. So if you review a vacuum cleaner, have a blog about vacuum cleaners. If you review digital marketing products, stick with that. The key is to stick to one niche. This way, your website will be the go-to site for all the product reviews in your niche.
PRO TIP: Did you know that sticking to a niche also do wonders for SEO? This means that your site has more chances of getting ranked on the front page of the search engines if all of your content is related to one topic or keyword.
You really cannot do affiliate marketing without content. It is through content that products are introduced and demonstrated. More than the creation, it is how the content is structured and how the product is integrated that matters.
Arlen Robinson is the co-founder and VP of Business Development at OSI Affiliate Software. He is also the host of The Ecommerce Marketing Podcast where he discusses marketing strategies with experts from all over the world.