Have you ever walked into a store, bought 100 of something, then walked out with only one or two of them – or paid for 100 gallons of gas but then only pumped 2 or 3 gallons of gas into your tank? Sounds pretty silly, yet thousands of affiliate marketers do the same thing every day when they buy traffic that goes directly to their affiliate links.

Are you guilty of this major affiliate marketing mistake? Do you buy Cost Per Click (CPC) ads, ads on social media sites, solo e-zine ads, banner ads on websites, premium listings in search engines or any other such types of ads, all linked directly to your affiliate links? Let’s take a look at why this is so glaring a mistake, in light of it being so common amongst affiliate marketing methods…

Typical results for online advertising of products goes as follows: you buy 1,000 clicks from a targeted source, and of that thousand visitors you get sales from 1 – 2% of them – maybe 4 – 6% for a great offer or a spectacular result of 10% if the product is unique, timely, priced right and comes with powerful bonuses, right? Sounds both good and profitable – and it often is.

But what about the other 90 – 99% of those clicks you paid for? These people read the offer and rejected it for whatever reason – yet you still paid for them to view the site. Now they’re gone and you’ve derived no benefit whatsoever from the majority of your advertising budget. Sounds a lot like those silly examples above, doesn’t it? But what option do you have when you’re trying to build a profitable affiliate marketing business, especially in the early days of your online business when you don’t yet have a viable opt-in list to build your commissions with?

The solution is not only simple & elegant, but works equally well for super-affiliates and those just looking to start affiliate marketing. Set up your own blog, post about the product or service, and link to the product using your affiliate link – then use your paid advertising to send targeted traffic to your blog post. Suddenly you’re deriving at least SOME benefit from every click you paid for with your hard-earned advertising budget! How?

  1. The people who would have bought anyway will still buy,
  2. Effective pre-selling in your blog post can double your conversions, making buyers out of some who wouldn’t otherwise have bought,
  3. Some may not buy that product, but instead end up buying something else they see in your sidebar ads or in another of your posts,
  4. Some may subscribe to your e-zine or RSS feed, giving you more chances to put your links in front of them,
  5. Some may not buy, but find your post or overall blog worthy of mention on their social media pages,
  6. Those active on social media sites may use easy links on your blog to follow you on Google+, Twitter, Facebook and similar sites, and
  7. 100% of that traffic has just seen your name, your blog and your writing, branding you worldwide over time!

Easy to see the impact this can have on your affiliate marketing commissions, isn’t it? If you don’t have your own hosting for a blog, get that & unlimited autoresponders in one great package from http://hosting4marketers.com or if you don’t know how to install a blog get a free secure WordPress blog installer here. And by making that one small change in your marketing technique you can potentially invoke and derive profits from all seven of those points and stop paying for worthless traffic – starting today!

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The Simplest And Quickest Way To Start Affiliate Marketing

©2011 Doug Champigny, http://captain-affiliate.com
All Rights Reserved Worldwide.

Affiliate marketing successfully involves proficiency in a variety of online marketing strategies & techniques, but at the core there are just a few issues to deal with when you start affiliate marketing. Let’s take a quick look at the requirements for first getting started – not as a ‘quick-buck’ artist, but as a serious online business owner who wants to build a solid, long-term online business whose revenue stream is generated in whole or in part by affiliate marketing commissions…

Your Affiliate Marketing ‘Home Base’…

While it is possible to have minimal affiliate marketing success without a website or blog, building a sustainable online business will require you to have an online ‘home’, a centralized presence online to base your affiliate marketing activities from.

The importance of this base cannot be overstated – you’ll use it to draw free traffic from the search engines, social networking and social bookmarking sites, article directories, podcast and video hosting sites and community sites like Twitter, Facebook and the various forums you visit.

And once those targeted visitors have arrived at your base, you’ll use it to presell them – to warm them up and put them in the buying mood – before sending them along via your affiliate marketing links. And during that visit, where prudent & possible, you’ll get that visitor to opt-in to your mailing list – otherwise those warm leads may well be lost forever once they depart from your site.

Currently, affiliate marketing blogging is the route most likely to succeed for you in this area. While static sites are still effective, they take much more time, effort and knowledge of HTML and/or CSS to keep current. For example, affiliate buttons and banners can be added or removed from every page of a blog by editing one file – on a website, each page would need to be done individually.

Additionally, adding new content to an affiliate marketing blog simply requires you to type in your message and publish the post – all of the linking by category, date, subject tags and other navigation is done automatically by the blog operating system. The WordPress blog platform, which is most commonly used, can also be configured to then notify the major search engines each time new content is added, along with dozens of directories that index blogs only and are not available to static site owners.

Perhaps most importantly, though, is that an affiliate marketing blog can be installed and up and running in 15 – 20 minutes by even those with no programming experience, following available step-by-step instructions in How To Install Blogs videos

Affiliate Marketing Hosting And Autoresponders

Having established that hosting your own affiliate marketing blogs using the WordPress blogging platform, to enable it obviously requires you to have hosting for your blogs. Two bits of good news for affiliate marketing bloggers – first, you can host numerous blogs in any desired niches all in one hosting account, and second the price of hosting has dropped significantly over the past ten years as web hosting has become more and more competitive.

The next online service you’ll require is a professional autoresponder account, preferably one that allows you to establish an unlimited number of individual mailing lists, as you’ll want at least one that’s exclusive to each of the niches you’ll be targeting. Put simply, your extreme sports affiliate marketing subscribers aren’t going to be interested in the information you send to your gardening niche subscribers and vice-versa.

Fortunately there is one resource that gives you both of these resources in one plan, allowing you to have both affiliate marketing hosting and autoresponders for one low monthly investment, and means you only need to deal with one interface to access both services. As to setting it all up, the package referenced in the blogging section also includes a full ‘How To Install Numerous Blogs in One Hosting Account‘ video tutorial.

Monetizing Your Affiliate Marketing Blogs

At first your blog traffic will be slow and affiliate marketing commissions will be few and far between – but don’t let that stop you! Remember, you’re building a long-term affiliate marketing business of your own here, one with the potential to let you eventually leave the boss and commute behind as you start affiliate marketing full-time online.

To get your income stream started, use Google’s Adsense program and some niche-specific affiliate programs. Adsense is a Pay-Per-Click (PPC) program run by the world’s largest search engine, and the system automatically displays ads targeted to match the content of the page each ad appears on. Each time one of your blog readers clicks on one of the ads, you make money, ranging from a few cents to a few dollars depending on the niche and the particular ad. Sign up for the Adsense program through Google, then either work your way through creating and installing the code on your blog or, simpler yet, just use one of the blog themes optimized for Adsense.

Next, sign up for affiliate accounts at ClickBank (digital products) and LinkShare (physical products) and browse each for the best affiliate programs for your particular niche. Don’t choose based on how much each affiliate program pays, but rather by which products and services will be of most help to your potential target market – you can sell a lot more that way, and the total affiliate marketing commissions will exceed what you’ll make from just the most expensive products.

Also, don’t forget to add a banner or other link to your own webhost’s affiliate program – with luck, over time you’ll build your affiliate commissions from your host to the point where they exceed your monthly hosting charges, effectively giving you your blog hosting and autoresponders at no net cost! The affiliate marketing hosting and autoresponders service we mentioned above has just such a program, for example.

Increasing Commissions From Your Affiliate Marketing Blogs

All of the above should only take you a day or two at most, especially if you’re following along with the video tutorials in the Adsense Alive Pro bundle (which could just as easily have been called How To Start Affiliate Marketing).

So with your base installed, operational and monetized, increasing affiliate commissions becomes the focus. Add a new article or post to your blogs every couple of days – once a week at least – and make sure each article has information relative to the particular niche you’re targeting. The more helpful information you offer, the sooner you have a steady blog audience and start to build the credibility as an expert in your field, necessary to maximize your affiliate commissions.

The rest of your available time should be spent on generating as much targeted traffic to your affiliate marketing blogs as you can – increase web traffic and you’ll see a corresponding jump in commissions as long as you keep that traffic to highly targeted leads.

There are many free ways to generate targeted blog traffic – it took Willie Crawford and me over 3 hours to detail just 15 free ways to increase web traffic on our Top Traffic Tips teleseminar. Start with that guide or research the various methods on your own – just be sure to try as many as you can find and track the results from each. Over time you’ll be able to increase your success – and your affiliate commissions – by focusing more time and energy on those working best in any given niche and much less time on those that aren’t producing as much targeted traffic to your affiliate marketing blogs.

How To Start Affiliate Marketing in 3 Simple Steps

So there you have it – the simplest and quickest way to start affiliate marketing…

  1. Get Your Hosting & Autoresponders
  2. Install Affiliate Marketing Blogs
  3. Increase Web Traffic with Free Targeted Traffic

Now, get ye hence and start making affiliate marketing profits of your own! 😉

Pro Tip: Bookmark this post and come back to re-read it once you have your affiliate marketing blogs installed. This post is a perfect example of affiliate marketing pre-selling: It provides extremely helpful information to this blog’s target audience, showing how to set up an affiliate marketing business quickly and simply while demonstrating the need for and usefulness of three separate products. Try to emulate this in your affiliate marketing blogging on your chosen niches… – DC.

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What They Don’t Tell You About E-Mail Marketing For Affiliates…

©2011 Doug Champigny, http://captain-affiliate.com
All Rights Reserved Worldwide.

Affiliate marketing information abounds online, as does information on almost all aspects of e-mail marketing. E-mail marketing resources tell you how to build opt-in lists, how to build squeeze pages, how to write free reports to put on those squeeze pages, how to use social media marketing to drive traffic to your opt-in list-building pages, how to load up your autoresponder messages so they go out automatically and so much more… But what DON’T they tell you about e-mail marketing for affiliates?

Consider this scenario: You’re new to affiliate marketing and have been reading various blogs, e-books and reports on using e-mail marketing as part of your affiliate marketing promotional mix. You’ve learned, correctly, that a list of targeted leads who have double-opted-in to your list will normally become your largest source of affiliate commissions. You follow their advice, put up your squeeze page and starting pushing it like crazy using Twitter, FaceBook and all the other important social media websites – and the signups to your opt-in list start rolling on in…

Now what???

Oh yeah – you have to either upload a series of messages into your autoresponder or start sending out broadcast e-mails. Great! You can just tell them about… ahh… umm… Gee, being brand new at this, what do you write? You don’t have the knowledge base yet since you’re just getting started affiliate marketing. So how can you write informative, helpful e-mails to send out?

If you’re targeting a niche like car racing, baby showers or snowboarding you may have enough experience to get started – just make an ordered list of what people need to know and start writing your e-mails. But many starting out in affiliate marketing want to target the Internet marketing / online marketing / making money online crowd, since that’s the niche they’re most interested in themselves. But you’re new to affiliate marketing and e-mail marketing – so what do you send?

Fortunately there’s an easy solution…

Send them the information they need written by experts. You don’t want to steal, err, ‘borrow’ other marketers’ e-mails, that’s both unethical and illegal. You could send articles from the article directories, but you have to state the author’s name and link so that builds their credibility, not yours. What you need are PLR resources you can put YOUR name and links on and load into your autoresponder.

PLR, or private label rights, mean you can take that product and use it as if it were your own creation – in most cases you have almost the same rights to it as if you wrote it yourself. And since you will be reading each e-mail before adding your name and affiliate links, you WILL already have that knowledge by the time it starts going out to prospects, so it’s not like you’re sending about anything you don’t already know. Bingo – legal, ethical and it’s YOU sending them YOUR information.

Take a look at the PLR e-courses at Optin-List-Building.com. As I write this there are already 18 different e-courses there, all of them dealing with aspects of online marketing, and all ready to use for e-mail marketing for affiliates – there’s even an e-course on affiliate marketing itself! And all come with those PLR rights…

Most of the series are 5, 6 or 7 days, so you can use them as a stand-alone e-course or combine 2 or more into a longer course. Each also comes with a ready-made squeeze page and confirmation page, so you can use those to help build opt-in lists too. And to top it off, you get a salespage & download page as well, because each course also comes with resell rights.
In other words, you get to learn from the e-course, use it to build opt-in lists, use it as content to send to your subscribers, and use it as a product to sell yourself – 4 different ways to profit from each course!

And THAT’S how to overcome what they don’t tell you about e-mail marketing for affiliates – download your PLR marketing e-courses now and get cracking – your affiliate marketing commissions are waiting!

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Affiliate Marketing 2011 – Affiliate Marketing Predictions For 2011

© 2010 Doug Champigny, http://captain-affiliate.com
All Rights Reserved Worldwide.

Affiliate marketing in 2011 will require more effort but should lead to higher residual affiliate commissions for those who put in the effort to start affiliate marketing correctly.

Earlier today I posted my Internet marketing predictions for 2011 – if you haven’t read that post, please do before carrying on reading here. Not only does it give a lot of background on the basis for those (and these) predictions for 2011, but there’s also an important case study on blogging for affiliate marketing and Internet marketing in general.

Let me preface the following Affiliate Marketing Predictions for 2011 by separating affiliate marketers into two groups – the wannabes who have bought into the push-the-button-and-make-millions-with-no-effort-or-experience myth and serious affiliates intent on building a stable online income, either to become self-employed entrepreneurs or simply to create an affiliate marketing income stream as a supplement to their current offline earnings.

In 2011 the former group will find reduced returns that continue to drop throughout 2011, and we’ll ignore them in this post. If you believe you can make a good income or reach super-affiliate status with little or no effort, stop reading now – you’re just wasting YOUR time and MY bandwidth. But if you’re less gullible and realize there’s great money to be made online but that it requires time, effort and a reasonable investment in your own future, read on – this post is for you!

2010 Was a brutal year for most affiliate marketers, as response to mailings dropped and people dropped out of membership sites in droves. Not those who were using and making money from the memberships, but the 50% or so who sign up, seldom or never use the sites, but also don’t bother to cancel – this year they did.

Not everyone saw major problems with affiliate marketing in 2010 – and those who did well point to the solutions for affiliate marketing in 2011. Those who combined effective pre-selling with a diversified marketing mix set up affiliate marketing funnels that led to, and will continue to lead to residual commissions that continue long after the affiliate has moved on to other projects.

Forget about the ‘wild west’ days of affiliate marketing in the 1990’s and most of the first decade of 2000 – 2009 when you could just choose any product at random from ClickBank, send out your e-zine promoting it and be finished for the day, knowing the commissions would come pouring in. Same for jumping from big JV launch to big JV launch, simply sending out the same canned pitch as 50 or 100 other marketers. Successful affiliate marketing in 2011 will require more planning, research and effort than that.

Don’t misunderstand – affiliate marketing will remain the easiest way for someone to start a business online, and the sky’s still the limit for what you can earn in affiliate commissions. But to achieve those lofty super-affiliate incomes you’ll have to convert your affiliate marketing efforts into a professional and polished business, not just a haphazard collection of promotions. And you’ll need to pay more attention to testing & tracking in 2011, to be sure you’re using your time and energy in the most effective way possible.

If you’re already groaning at the idea of the extra work, re-examine your goals to be sure you’re not really in the first of the two groups mentioned above. If it hasn’t already become obvious to you, 2011 will hammer home that affiliate marketing part-time or full-time is a BUSINESS, and you’ll need to make sure you operate your online business that way. Salespeople focus on getting THIS sale – marketers focus on building sales volume in a sustainable fashion over the long term. Yes, anyone can be an affiliate – but only those willing to invest the time, sweat-equity and at least some capital will be able to build a solid affiliate marketing business that can sustain them long-term.

Credibility in Affiliate Marketing

Forget the days of sending out just anything or promoting a product just because it pays a high commission. In fact, when you get an invite to a JV launch that focuses on how much you make per sale or the prize you can win, simply delete the invite without wasting your time clicking through. If the product is truly useful and of benefit to your target market, they’ll focus on how good the product is instead – telling you how much you’ll make because it’ll be an easy sell since it delivers so much value for the price.

Too many people are starting to see affiliate marketers in the same light as the offline world views used car salespeople, but acting professionally can keep you from being tarred by that same brush. For proof, look at the reputations of super-affiliates like Rosalind Gardner and Willie Crawford – both have huge followings that love, trust and respect them – and trust their product recommendations completely.

So how did they get, and continue to earn, that respect and credibility? First, they check out any product before they promote it – both to ensure it’s high quality and that it over-delivers value for the price and, more importantly, that it will help their people in their online pursuits. Recommend just one or two poor products and your credibility plunges – recommend good products that aren’t of help to your followers and your affiliate commissions plummet.

So rule #1 for affiliate marketing in 2011 is to never recommend a product you haven’t checked out first. Yes, this means investing a bit to get the product yourself first. But if it’s the right product you’ll make that back many times over when you promote it, and if it isn’t then it was a cheap price for protecting your reputation and credibility and keeping the trust of your hard-won audience.

Residual Affiliate Marketing Commissions

Historically, the way to residual commissions has been to promote great services or memberships that continue to pay you as long as your referral stays a part of the site. For example, in 2010 we received ClickBank cheques every month from promoting ClickBank Pirate and Affiliate Silver Bullets, a cheque every month from Socrates Socratous at Resell Rights Fortunes, and affiliate commissions via PayPal from Viral E-Book Explosion, Hosting4Marketers and Expert WordPress.

But 2010 saw the trend to people being more leery of joining membership sites, or joining and then leaving sooner. In tough economic times caused by the global recession, your target audience will be less likely to commit to ongoing payments than they will to paying a one-time price for a product, except for necessary services like hosting and autoresponders. So what you need to do is create your own recurring commissions from products and services that only charge, and pay out, once.

How do you do that? By creating resources online that presell the product and sending traffic to that page using your long-term traffic tools like your blog, social bookmarking, article marketing, podcasts and videos, etc. For examples, see my Advanced Twitter Marketing Blog and Road To Twitter Success website, both of which exist to promote my Advanced Marketing on Twitter e-book and various Twitter-related affiliate opportunities. Another example is my Simple ClickBank Profits Blog. Even if I never touch those sites again, they’ll still get traffic, will still be in the search engines and will continue to generate recurring affiliate marketing income streams for us.

Affiliate Marketing Pre-Selling

As stated above, pre-selling is becoming more and more a part of affiliate marketing success. Lets look at the two reasons for this…

As an affiliate, your job isn’t to sell the product or service – that’s the merchant’s job. Yours is to deliver targeted traffic to the site, traffic that is liable to buy the product. But what if a great product has a salespage that sucks? You’re not making any commissions. Even a great salespage may not convey all the benefit of a product, or may go over the top in it’s description of the benefits and ease of use and make the prospects cynical of it’s claims.

By putting up a few blog posts on the product and it’s benefits, or building a small site outlining the problems prospects face and the solutions the product provides, you’ve ‘warmed your audience up’ to the product, and can now send them through to it via your affiliate link in a much more receptive mood. Trying to do all that in your e-zine is sure to run afoul of the junk mail filters, and even if it got through it’s often buried under dozens of other marketers’ e-mails. Plus, your audience either takes action right then or forgets about it quickly, stopping it from being viral or producing recurring commissions.

And that brings us to the second reason for effective affiliate marketing pre-selling – your ongoing and growing sphere of influence. People signing up to your optin list don’t know what you sent yesterday, last week or 6 months ago. But your blog visitors can look over your posts on any topic, and visitors to your pre-selling sites will always see the information since that’s all that’s there.

Another powerful pre-selling strategy is to write short 5 – 10 page reports that provide useful and helpful info to your target market (NOT salespitches) and end them with a recommendation and your affiliate link. You can offer the free report through a squeeze page to build your opt-in lists or just give it away to achieve even wider distribution. Be sure to include a squeeze page in the download so others can distribute it to build their own lists – without that added incentive they probably won’t pass it along. Most won’t pass it along anyway, but those who do will be spreading your branding and your affiliate link in the report.

Driving Targeted Traffic For Affiliate Marketing In 2011

The bulk of the targeted traffic you send to your affiliate links should come from your e-zine and your blog. That hasn’t changed – but what has changed is the strategies and techniques you use to drive that traffic to your blogs, pre-selling sites and squeeze pages.

Your blog can attract a lot of traffic all on it’s own if it’s done right. Be sure you’re using a good SEO plugin, keep your blog tightly focused to one niche only, and use the standard keyword strategies in deciding what to blog about, what to title your posts and the actual content as well, aiming for search-engine-friendly posts that still read properly and deliver true value to your blog readers.

After each posting be sure to bookmark your post to the social media. Plugins will tie your blog post to your Twitter account, FaceBook Account, LinkedIn, MyBlogLog, etc, giving you much wider exposure with no additional work on your part – and those links can also be backlinks that help the search engines find and spider your post that much more quickly! Also use plugins to make it easy for your readers top promote posts they find helpful – like the ones on this page for FaceBook, Twitter, Google Buzz, LinkedIn, etc.

Long-Term Traffic Resources
Use a variety of methods to drive targeted traffic to your blogs. Submit articles to the directories, podcasts to iTunes, Podcast Alley, Podcast Ready, etc, and videos to YouTube, Viddler, etc. Do teleseminars and webinars on your own and/or with niche experts you’re interviewing – then use the recording as a giveaway to drive that audience as well. From time to time build a Squidoo lens, a HubPages hub, a Google knol or a WetPaint site, again pointing them to your blog.

“Sure – But where do I find time for all that???”

I heard that… And the answer is one of the things that’s changing for Affiliate marketing 2011. The online marketing case study I wrote about earlier shows that you’re further ahead doing SOME of each of these methods than you are focusing on just one or two. Instead of blogging 7 days a week, blog two days a week and use the other days for the other traffic-generating activities. Instead of writing 5 articles today, write one, then record it as a podcast & use both to make a video version of it.

While each activity gets less attention than it would if you focused just on it, the overall effect is you build up an empirical body of work in all different markets, all linking back to your blog. As I write this, when I Google “Doug Champigny” I get over 75,000 results in Google – think that brings me a bit of traffic on a residual basis? 😉

A Word On Blog Commenting…

As a final note, a quick spotlight on blog commenting. Not the spam blog commenting by those nonsensical ‘auto-comment-posters’, but true blog commenting where you go to the site, read the blog and leave a legitimate comment that directly relates to the post in question. I’ve been truly surprised by the traffic those have started to generate for me, especially those using the CommentLuv plugin. Plus the volume of Google Alerts I get on those makes me wonder if Google is now ignoring the black-hearted ‘no-follow’ tag that WP uses as standard coding on WordPress blogs. (If you haven’t installed the DoFollow tag on your blogs, do it right now!) So be sure to add blog commenting on blogs related to your niche as of of your regular promotional activities for Affiliate Marketing in 2011!

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Advanced Affiliate Marketing – Creating Residual Streams of Affiliate Commissions

©2010 Doug Champigny, http://captain-affiliate.com
All Rights Reserved Worldwide.

The holy grail of affiliate marketing is residual commissions – making money month after month or year after year from one initial sales effort. Most notable amongst affiliate offers paying residual commissions are website hosting plans, autoresponder services and membership sites, many of which charge a monthly fee and pay affiliate commissions for the lifetime of the account. Nothing is nicer than going into a month knowing you already have hundreds or thousands of dollars coming in that month before you’ve started doing any promotions. Retention rates vary widely amongst such sites, from a few months in a membership site to the years many people stay with their hosting company or autoresponder company, assuming the service is good of course.

But recurring billing is not the only way to earn residual streams of affiliate commissions, however. You can build ‘set-and-forget’ systems to bring in commissions from one-off sales too, again often lasting into many months or years after your efforts to promote them. The trick here is to set up ongoing traffic systems that will continue to generate affiliate marketing leads and direct them to the salespages.

To do that, first set up your affiliate marketing funnel with an opt-in to an autoresponder e-course that promotes the product in question. Next you have to decide which traffic sources will bring in the long-term targeted traffic needed to create an ongoing stream of affiliate marketing leads.

Sites like Twitter and FaceBook are extremely busy, but they’re also based on a steady stream of posts, which means your message scrolls off the main pages in minutes or hours. But blog posts, podcasts, videos, articles, etc. stay online and available for the long term, as do Squidoo lenses, Google knols, Hub pages and the like. These are the sources of the long-term targeted traffic needed to build opt-in lists with a steady stream of affiliate marketing leads. And that steady stream receiving your promotional e-course is the foundation of your recurring stream of affiliate commissions.

To make it easier for you to get started, pick up these 5 list-building reports with PLR – each comes with a professionally-designed squeeze page, confirm page and download page, so most of the work is already done for you. If you don’t yet have a professional autoresponder service or a place to host your new pages, I heartily recommend Hosting4Marketers.com, whom I’ve been using for years now.

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Advanced Affiliate Marketing – Building Affiliate Marketing Funnels

©2010 Doug Champigny, http://captain-affiliate.com
All Rights Reserved Worldwide.

When first starting out in affiliate marketing, it’s common to use a blog post, an article, a video or an e-mail to promote affiliate offers. Before long, however, it becomes clear that this is no longer enough, especially if you want to reach the large affiliate commissions earned by those practicing advanced affiliate marketing strategies.

The solution to this transition from affiliate newbie to professional affiliate begins when you learn to build affiliate marketing funnels to promote merchants’ products and services. These funnels not only increase sales and thereby increase affiliate commissions, but also help you to build an opt-in list of targeted affiliate marketing leads for your future promotions as well.

The affiliate marketing funnels may seem daunting at first, but with a bit of practice they’ll become routine. Your affiliate marketing funnels begin with a free report that will appeal to your target market and is offered to them for opting into your mailing list from a page known as a ‘squeeze’ page. Once they have joined your list and confirmed their e-mail address, they are forwarded to the download page to get their report.

While on the site they’ll have seen your affiliate ads on the confirmation page and on the download page, plus any links or ads you’ve included in or with the report. And after signing up to your autoresponder they’ll receive your pre-written series of e-mails, which should include additional helpful content along with your affiliate marketing promotional materials. While some of your affiliate marketing leads will drop out of the series early, others will stay in your loop a lot longer as long as you make sure to include useful, helpful, targeted information along with your pitches. And the greater number of contacts you have with each targeted lead, the higher the possibility that you’ll make the sale and collect your affiliate marketing commissions, all on autopilot.

Once your affiliate funnel is in place, all that remains is to drive as many targeted affiliate marketing leads into it as you can, using all of the standard traffic-generation strategies and techniques. With each funnel you should be able to improve your autoresponder series for higher conversions and be able to drive more targeted prospects into your funnels.

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To see one such funnel in action, download Doug Champigny’s free guide to Building Traffic and Lists. For direct help from this super-affiliate marketing mentor, enroll in Doug Champigny’s Affiliate Marketing PowerStart Coaching program and learn to make money online using effective affiliate marketing strategies and techniques.

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Professional affiliate marketers know that when you are choosing affiliate products and services to promote, you should use extreme care. By not being careful when choosing which affiliate programs to promote, you will be doing a major disservice to your current and potential customers, as well as yourself.

To listen to an Audio Version of this affiliate marketing article, click this arrow:

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Successful affiliate marketing involves a bit of front-end research… First, you want to look at the product or service. Is it a good product or service that will solve a problem or fulfill a desire that your market has? Is there are return policy? Is it priced to sell and is there added value? As a customer, is this a product or service that you would by for your self?

Will your customers be served? Is there a customer support ticket system or a toll-free number, as well as a support email address that your customers can use? You do not want to ruin your own affiliate mrketing credibility by offering a product or service that will not serve your customers well, or for which your customers will not be supported properly.

Once you are sure your customers will be well served, it is time to think about yourself and your needs. Is the affiliate commission high enough? Look for affiliate programs that pay at least a 30% commission, and preferably ones that pay 50% if possible. Is there the potential for a residual affiliate income? What about commissions from affiliate’s who sign up under you?

Next, read the affiliate agreement, as well as the terms and conditions. Will you be able to promote the products or services in the way that you choose? How often will you be paid and what method is used for payments. Under what circumstances will you not be paid.

Are sales and clicks tracked, as well as affiliate commissions owed and commissions paid? Is there a support forum for affiliates and/or an easy way to contact the affiliate manager? What about promotional materials? Are you provided with banners, sales letters, ads, articles, and free give-a-ways?

Finding out all of this information shouldn’t take more than just a few minutes of your time, and it is time well spent. Many hours and lots of potential affiliate commissions have been lost simply because affiliates don’t take the time to choose their affiliate programs with care. Your affiliate marketing is a BUSINESS – and like all businesses, doing your due diligence is a necessary part of affiliate marketing success!

©2009 Captain-Affiliate.com. All Rights Reserved.

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The easiest affiliate marketing sales to make are continuously eluding 95% of all affiliates – not because most affiliates don’t approve of them or choose to ignore them, but because they are outside the realm of most affiliates’ experience.

I’m talkin, of course, about affiliates commissions made on the backend after someone downloads a free gift. The affiliate either gives away the gift or refers prospects to a free gift, and makes their affiliate commissions on anything the person then buys, either through links in the gift itself or from the One-Time-Offer on the download site.

Let me give you a prime example of each…

Twice a year, the big FreePLR giveaway offers great free products with unrestricted private label rights from some of the best-known names in Internet marketing. After joining the FreePLR Affiliate Program, you, as an affiliate, send your link to your list telling them about the 20 free gifts from people like Willie Crawford, Jeff Dedrick, Doug Champigny & Nicheology’s Paul Evans. Once your referral signs up for the site, they are shown a $47.00 OTO for 50 additional e-books they can download. Should that person decide to take that OTO, your affiliate commission is 50% or $23.50 for each sale.

This is very powerful for you as an affiliate – your subscriber wins because you showed them where to get 20 free PLR products, the site wins by getting a new member and a new sale, and you win from both happier list members AND the commissions from the OTO sale.

Will every referral end up taking the OTO? No, of course not. But that’s no different from any other affiliate promotion you do – only a small percentage of prospects you send to any one offer will buy, and this is no different. So why not remember to promote the higher-end giveaways like the FreePLR event, both to give your list great free resources and to boost your affiliate earnings?

The second option works equally well – you give away a free resource that has your affiliate links already branded inside the e-book. Since you’re the one giving away the e-book, you can choose to leave it online year-round – just schedule any promotions you do for it to run between the giveaways you promote, as opposed to at conflicting times.

Now don’t worry – it’s not like you have to create these e-books yourself… There are various places you can get them already ready to go, provided by the merchant themselves and ready to brand with your own affiliate links. The source I like best for them, since it covers a number of topics and a number of different affiliate programs, is run by well-know Internet marketing ‘big dog’ Jeff Dedrick.

His brandable e-books site provides numerous brandable e-books for you to give away after inserting your own affiliate links in them. In fact, Jeff even provides the squeeze pages for you to give them away from! This basic service is free, and there are higher-level services available too if you decide to opt for one of the paid levels of membership. To see what all’s available free, just take a look at Jeff Dedrick’s Viral E-Book site here.

So there you have it. Affiliate marketing will never be easier than just giving away free resources. I’m sure by now ideas for promoting these through your mailing lists, article submissions, blog posts, tweets, podcasts and videos are running through your head – after all, what can be easier to promote than valuable products for free.

Making money as an affiliate just doesn’t get any easier than this, so why not add a few of these to your current affiliate promotions and boost your affiliate commissions almost on autopilot? 🙂 To get started, join the FreePLR Affiliate Program here, then get your free brandable e-books from Jeff Dedrick’s site here.

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Why I Love Affiliate Marketing – Part 5
By Jimmy D. Brown of “Affiliatenaire”

The word “overhead” is not a favorite among those who run
businesses of any kind. Nobody likes the expenses of
operating a business. And nobody really talks about them
much when it comes to promoting all of the “money-making”
products and services online.

But, don’t kid yourself, there’s a lot of overhead.

That brings me to the fifth reason why I love affiliate
marketing…

** You don’t need a big budget to make it work **

Do you have any idea how much money is spent running an
internet business? There are monthly fees for…

* Autoresponders
* Hosting
* Management
* Advertising
* Scripts
* Much more

There are regular fees for…

* Licensing
* Outsourcing
* Support
* Customer Service
* Maintenance
* Development
* Recruting
* Much more

It’s not uncommon to spend tens of thousands (even
hundreds of thousands) of dollars in operational
costs — which is fine if you’ve been in business
a while and are making the bucks. However, if you’re
a newcomer, it can be taxing on your budget!

SIDEBAR: I paid one girl over $30,000 last year
just to oversee one small part of my business.
No one talks much about it, but there ARE a lot
of expenses involved before you get to the
“bottom line” of profit.

BUT, with affiliate marketing, you don’t need a big
budget to make it work! You can simply use a variety
of free and low-cost marketing methods to generate
clicks to your affiliate link.

That’s why I love affiliate marketing.

You don’t need a big budget to make it work.

…………………….

Jimmy D. Brown is the author of “Affiliatenaire”, teaching
you how to create big-time affiliate commission checks in
only 1-3 hours each week. Click here to discover how you can get cash in
the bank without a website, experience or even an idea!

…………………….

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Why I Love Affiliate Marketing – Part 3
By Jimmy D. Brown of “Affiliatenaire

Some people have the ability to persuade others and talk
them into just about anything. Especially when it comes
to influencing their buying decisions. They know how to
push the right hot buttons, say things the right way and
generally get consumers into an emotional frenzy to the
point they are ready to click an order button.

There are two key words in that paragraph that really need
to stand out in your mind: “some people”.

Not everyone has this ability. In fact, only a few do.

That brings me to the third reason why I love affiliate
marketing…

** You don’t need to write a world class salesletter**

Have you ever tried to write a salesletter? There’s a
reason why professional copywriters charge up to $10,000
(and sometimes even more) for a SINGLE salesletter. It
takes a lot of experience and skill to write a top-gun
salesletter, which is why most people have a hard time
convincing people to buy if they do create their own
products and website.

They simply don’t have the right salesletter in place
to make it all work. Without good copy, it really doesn’t
matter how spectacular the offer is, you’re simply not
going to get many sales.

SIDEBAR: The average conversion rate of site visitors
who become buyers is reportedly less than 2%. That
means 98 out of every 100 do NOT buy. That’s why
sales are so incredibly bad for a poor site … you
*might* get 2 sales out of every 300-400 visitors.

BUT, with affiliate marketing, you don’t need to write a
salesletter! You simply direct people to someone else’s
high-octane salesletter for THEM to convert your leads
into commissionable sales.

That’s why I love affiliate marketing.

You don’t need to write a world class salesletter.

…………………….

<"Jimmy D. Brown is the author of “Affiliatenaire”, teaching
you how to “create big-time affiliate commission checks in
only 1-3 hours each week. Discover how you can get cash in
the bank without a website, experience or even an idea!

…………………….

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