10 Affiliate Marketing Tools That All The Pro’s Use
Having a good set of affiliate marketing tools is like the toolbox that you keep in your garage. In it are various tools that can be used to accomplish a number of tasks. Without them, you’d have a hard time getting some things done. For example, without a hammer, how would you pound a nail? With your shoe? Maybe, but it will take much more time and be much less effective.
As you start working with affiliate marketing, you’ll want a set of affiliate marketing tools that will help you lead potential buyers to the sales page of the products you are promoting. Here are 10 of the best affiliate tools that you can have in your affiliate marketing toolbox.
10 Affiliate Marketing Tools For Beginners And Pros
A good affiliate marketer will understand the importance of having their own website. Remember affiliate marketing means you are putting your reputation on the line. As well as promoting good products you want visitors to your website to get to know, like and trust you. When they do, you’ll find that your affiliate commissions increase substantially.
I would recommend using WordPress for your website. It’s simply the easiest to use CMS (content management system). WordPress has no end of plugins available. These plugins can do all sorts of things for your site. There are also many themes for you to pick and choose from so you can customize your site to suit you and your audience. A WordPress website has no complex scripts to install, no wading through encyclopedic instruction manuals. No hiring a programmer to do it for you. Click click done. You’re ready to go.
Next you need content for your affiliate website. Your primary value to any prospect or potential customer is to provide information. It’s how they’ll learn to trust your opinion. It’s what will bring them back to your website and it’s what will motivate them to click on your affiliate links to make a purchase. Much of your content will also pre-sell the products and services you represent. You can provide content in the form of:
- Comparison charts
- Online courses
- Audio messages
If you’re not a writer then consider using PLR (private label rights) material as a base for your content. Just remember to add your own thoughts and voice into the content. Adding images, quotes and other graphics is also a fantastic way to change it up and make it unique.
Within your content you can add your affiliate links to the products you are promoting. You could even write a review of each product as well. If you do this don’t forget to add the pros and cons of each product. You should take an unbiased view, even though you are hoping to make money from it. Being open and honest is a good way to get your readers to develop a relationship with you.
3. Email List
Your goal is to create your own email list so you can promote different products to your subscribers. The biggest issue you will have is getting people to opt-in to your list. This is usually done by offering some form of free gift on your squeeze page (see points #4 and #5 below).
Building an email list is obviously more time consuming than just sending leads directly to the vendor’s sales page. But you want to look at this in a different way. What if you spend a huge amount of time sending thousands of visitors to the sales site, but they don’t purchase right away. If they don’t purchase the buyer is lost to you. Where as if they are on your list, you can send them other offers in the future.
Another reason why an email list is one of your most important affiliate marketing tools is if the vendor goes out of business or they stop selling that particular product. All of your affiliate links have effectively become dead. By building your own list you are in control of your income and in control of which products you choose to promote.
4. Squeeze Page
To build your email list you need to get people to join your list. This is done by setting something up called a squeeze page. This is a webpage that only has one purpose and that is to capture a prospect’s email address. As a general rule, you would use a squeeze page for visitor traffic that is generated from paid traffic sources. This is traffic that you control and the primary objective is to obtain the visitor email addresses so that you can contact them with follow-up emails.
A squeeze page should provide specific information that a visitor was looking for. You must design it with a clear focus on the customer directed onto that page. Therefore, it must be relevant to the contents that you placed on your ad or in your email link.
FREE Checklist: Affiliate Marketing For Beginners
Leading on from point #5 above, your affiliate marketing tools are going to have to include a valuable giveaway. This is something that you can offer on your squeeze page as an incentive for prospects to give you their email address. For example, if you are targeting customers who have an acne issue you could offer a free report that addresses this issue. Then inside the report you add your affiliate links to a solution – which could be the paid product.
Many giveaways are digital downloads, such as a report, checklist, ebook or video. This is because they provide instant gratification. When somebody enters their email address onto your squeeze page, your autoresponder (see point #6 below) can instantly send them an email that contains the link to the digital download.
6. Quality Autoresponder
As an affiliate marketer, you’ll rely upon developing a list of interested prospects, and in establishing a relationship and rapport with them. To do it, you’ll need a powerful autoresponder service. Don’t skimp on this. A well respected autoresponder will ensure that most of your emails will get through, and you’ll enjoy a whole menu of powerful options to maximize the way your subscribers can be managed and woven in and out of lists. A quality autoresponder is one of the key affiliate marketing tools you really need to have. There are a number of different versions on the market. I recommend and use AWeber.
It normally takes about 6- 7 emails before a person will commit to making a purchase. You can set your autoresponder to send out these follow up emails on autopilot when somebody joins your email list. These emails should provide value to your new subscriber. You can also sprinkle your affiliate links throughout this email sequence.
7. Social Media
Social media is one of those affiliate marketing tools that lets you connect and interact with your target audience. By having the skills to utilize social media to its full extent, you can greatly improve your business reach, reputation and growth. You can create profiles on social media sites where your target audience hangs out.
While your end goal is to make money with the most successful affiliate programs, developing a relationship with your readers is important. Many top affiliate marketers create a Facebook group where their audience can discuss their concerns. This will help you know what topics need addressing and you can offer solutions and products to your members.
8. Marketing Collateral
Many affiliate programs do a great job of providing their affiliates with free affiliate marketing tools. Don’t forget that you are promoting their product and you only get paid if you make any sales, so you they need to support you with ready-made items like:
1. Banner ads
3. Email copy
5. Free promotional reports
Use the materials your affiliate manager has provided. It’s been tested and developed for results. That being said, be sure to create your own content too. Even as an affiliate you are your own company and your website needs to reflect your personality and brand. Building a community around your website and providing valuable content is a sure way to create a following that trusts you and your credibility, This will result in your audience clicking on your affiliate links and making purchases.
A good affiliate marketer knows his or her market and at some point you’ll want to do some keyword research. A good affiliate program may have these listed for you to help make your job easier, but you can find words and phrases other affiliates aren’t using to get rankings in the search engines.
Researching keywords involves some old-fashioned snooping and also the use of new technology. The experts suggest that you spend time looking at what your competition is doing, and what seems to be working for them.
You can simply spend time looking at their websites, articles, and newsletters to see what kinds of keywords they are honing in on. The key is to know which of those keywords would be good for you to use, and which you might want to stay away from due to the market being saturated with that particular keyword. There are programs available that offer keyword searching services. These work nicely to give you a good idea of which keywords are being used way too much, or very little, and how you might want to make adjustments to give yourself more search engine visibility.
Graphics involve fancy banners and buttons, images that are meant to excite and compel the reader to click on, and colorful and inspiring headers and footers. This means that graphics and images are needed but professional graphics can be expensive, and when you’re starting out in your marketing entrepreneurship, you might be on a tight budget.
Another option you have is to use free open source graphic programs. These are programs that give you access to all that you need to create your own graphics. Granted, these might require you to have a little bit of computer knowledge, but some open source graphic programs are very user-friendly and allow you to create some great images that can include banners and buttons, icons and everything else you might need to build the look and feel that is right for your website, squeeze page, emails, advertisements, blog posts or other pages.
Free Affiliate Marketing ‘Crash Course’
Having the right set of affiliate marketing tools is going to help you become more successful with your online business. Affiliate marketing can be very lucrative. You earn a commission for each item that you sell online. You don’t have to create a product, sort out payment systems or organize the product delivery. Your job is to send prospective customers to an offer. You then get paid a commission every time someone buys through your affiliate link. To learn more, this Free 30 minute ‘Crash Course’ reveals the truth about making money online and how you can profit online by leveraging the power of these affiliate marketing tools.