Do’s and Don’ts of Affiliate Marketing

As many of you know, I have a few fan pages on Facebook. A few days ago, I put up a post on my Lauren Huston – Social Media Lifestylist page. I really like hearing different perspectives and I wanted to know what the fans of my page wanted to see on my blog.

“I’m putting my next blog post in YOUR hands! I want to write about something that one of YOU suggests. Put your thinking cap on & submit your suggestion right here in the suggestion box! Hurry up, though! I want to start writing soon!”

I was very happy to get responses from people and somewhat surprised to see that most of them had an interest in a particular topic, affiliate marketing. Thank you to those of you who submitted replies! This post is for you!

Some Do’s and Don’ts of Affiliate Marketing

  • Do choose the products you market wisely. Do not be roped in to products that claim to be “the next best thing.”
  • Do be clear with your online network that you are marketing a certain product and give a brief description.
  • Don’t overwhelm your network by posting a continuous stream of affiliate links. Approach your marketing with moderation.
  • Do listen to the advice of Dillon Rhodes. “If there is already a thread going and someone provided an affiliate link for a particular product already, don’t follow up with your own affiliate link for the same product, etc.”
  • Do listen to MORE from Dillon Rhodes. “I just see so many people (even those who have been in the industry for years) immediately start a conversation with their pitch or randomly posting about “the next best thing” on people’s walls. I immediately dismiss their “opportunity” when this happens.”
  • Don’t jump in for a hard sell. When someone mentions something online and your product CAN answer their question or need, be mindful of etiquette. Ask the person questions to show interest. Approach the person in a private message.
  • Do be aware of what others who are marketing the same product are doing. If they put up their affiliate link, do not follow up minutes later with your link. This tends to look like spam in the Facebook news feed and is a possible way to get hidden by people.
  • Do not EVER randomly post your affiliate link on someone’s Facebook wall.
  • Do not EVER randomly tweet someone with your affiliate link.
  • Do not follow someone on Twitter, get them to follow you back, send them a direct message (DM) with your affiliate link and then UNFOLLOW the person. That is one easy way to lose followers and get yourself blocked.
  • Do be aware that not everyone wants to participate in affiliate marketing. If someone is not interested in joining your team or marketing your product, that does not mean the person does not like you. It simply means that they do not want to market what you are selling.
  • Do look for opportunities with people who DO need your product. Do searches on Facebook and see who/where your target audience is. Market to THEM and not necessarily to your friends. Twitter is another huge tool. By doing keyword searches, you can find people who are looking for what you are selling!
  • Do ask the product developer if he/she has any other experience in marketing affiliate products. I have seen many people create products that fail and then they bounce back around claiming that their new product REALLY IS “the next best thing.” Make sure you do your homework before you agree to market a product.
  • Do not get discouraged by people who decline the opportunity to talk to you about your product. Some people will be interested and some people will not. Try not to take a lack of interest to heart. Do find your niche audience and work the product there.
  • Do not believe everything you read, good or bad.
  • Do make sure that you have your affiliate links visible in the information section about you on Facebook and Twitter. Who knows what kind of business you might get from people who are just browsing?

These are some tips and guidelines that I offer based upon my own experiences with affiliate marketing, what I have learned from others and what I have witnessed via social media. Can you add to this list? What do’s and dont’s do you suggest?

  • Anonymous

    Awesome tips Lauren. I’d like to add two more tips. When creating blogpost for a product review, make sure you state the link is your affiliate link (FTC rule) and also believe in the affiliate product that you are trying to promote. That could be via getting the product yourself and testing it or taken an opinion from a trusted source :) – Thanks

  • http://www.laurenhuston.com Lauren Huston

    Good point, Yusuf! I agree with you completely. Somehow who markets a product SHOULD test it out. Thanks for the input! :)

  • Mariano

    This is great Lauren. Though we as an entity don’t do much of affiliate marketing, I know it’s a pretty popular thing to do out there for businesses (at some point…I’ll get around to setting up a couple of affiliations!!). You even touch upon some important etiquette that will help build a proper fan base around your business. Thanks!

  • http://www.laurenhuston.com Lauren Huston

    Thanks, Mariano. You should set up affiliate products! I actually would be interested in what Avelient offers! I feel like I am an affiliate already (without the link)!

  • http://terrycrosbyblog.com/ Terry Crosby

    Great article Lauren. I would also suggest that you try the product prior to selling it. Once you determine your audience will receive value from this article than you can write a review. After you have written several reviews will will soon be given products to review.

  • http://www.stevetheowl.com Steve Nicholas

    Great post, Lauren! These are some great things that people need to realize, but it is unfortunate the way that so many people keep doing these things because there is not much of an effort to explain to many people what attraction marketing is early in their business so they can learn how to be better at what we do and actually get to help people.

  • http://xdwebsolutions.com/category/blog/ XD Web Solutions

    Hey Lauren, I’m just getting into affiliate marketing so I’ll be listening more closely to your ideas :-) Thanks for these tips. Some seem really self-explanatory but we all know somebody out there is doing what they aren’t supposed to be doing! :-)

  • http://www.laurenhuston.com Lauren Huston

    Thank you, Steve. I’m glad that you liked the post. I think that affiliate marketing can be great. You are right, though, in that people are not trained enough when they start! I think that additional training would go a long way.

  • http://www.laurenhuston.com Lauren Huston

    Thanks, Terry! Yes, that is one point that I missed. Definitely try the product before trying to market it. Having a review and a real knowledge of the product is a major bonus!

  • http://www.laurenhuston.com Lauren Huston

    Thanks for the comment! One would think that a lot of these tips are self-explanatory but I have seen so many errors in the way people approach affiliate marketing. It is really unbelievable. I wish you the BEST OF LUCK in your marketing endeavors!

  • http://www.puremoneymaking.net/ Pure Money Making

    Thank you very much Lauren.
    I’m new to Clickbank, and the article was really helpful.

  • http://www.laurenhuston.com Lauren Huston

    I’m so glad! Thanks for commenting and letting me know that my article was useful to you.

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