Every business owners knows that marketing and finding new customers for your products and services can become expensive and overwhelming, but with a little thought and the right products and services, you could springboard your sales to the next level and beyond with an affiliate program.
If you’re not sure what an affiliate program is, it’s essentially attracting people to join you, who want to earn a commission on all sales they generate selling your products and services. Google AdSense is perhaps the easiest and most widely known online affiliate program, in that Google attracts people who want to display advertisements on their website, and then they share a commission based on click through rates. However affiliate programs generally use an affiliate management software such as aMember, 1shoppingcart, ClickBank, eJunkie, or a whole multitude of others depending on your products, services, goals and the amount of control you need to have over your affiliate program.
Ingredients of a Good Affiliate Program
A good affiliate program will work better if it provides:
- Regular communication – Set up an email list just for your affiliates so that they can communicate with you and you with them.
- Awesome marketing materials – Supply your affiliates with graphics, banners, and easy-to-use marketing materials that they can be proud to use.
- Brandable content – One of the hardest parts of marketing a product is coming up with content to market it. Provide content that your affiliates can rewrite and rebrand for their audience easily and quickly.
- Excusive webinars – Allow affiliates with a certain number of sales to plan an exclusive webinar that you’ll attend to help promote your products, speaking directly to their audience.
- Specialized training – Some affiliates need extra help learning how to market products and if you offer them that, they’re going to be more likely to market yours.
- Incentive discounts – Your affiliates can be great sources of customers too. If you offer exclusive discounts that they can either take themselves or pass on to their customers, you’ll encourage more sales.
- Creative marketing collateral – Not only should you offer the basic marketing collateral but you also want to consider being more creative. Offer video, product training, infographics, easily customizable graphics and more.
- Easy-to-use technology – One of the most important choices when starting an affiliate program is the choice of technology. Choose wisely based on the functions you want to have for both your affiliates and your customers.
If your affiliate program provides all that to your affiliates, then you’ll have an easier time attracting good affiliates. But, the real key to a supercharged affiliate program is attracting affiliate programs.
Attracting Quality Affiliates
To attract quality affiliates you’ll need:
- Top-notch products
- Customer-centric service
- Continual creation of new products
- Excellent follow-up
- Lifetime cookies
- High payout
- Fast payouts
- Fair terms and conditions
If you provide these things, you’ll be able to have an affiliate program that truly springboards your sales to the next level because you’ll have more people out there talking about your products and services. Having affiliates, in many ways, is like duplicating yourself, since you don’t pay affiliates unless they have made sales, affiliate programs are relatively low cost and the incentives to sell are built right into your affiliate program, so all you need do is provide training, encouragement and support.