What is Affiliate Marketing – Is it Really What they say it is?
Does Affiliate Marketing really worth the attention it is getting in the online business space?
Either affiliate marketing deserves the attention it is getting in the online business space or not depend on a lot of factors. Crucial among these factors is a proper understanding of what affiliate marketing is and where it stands in today business strategy. That is what makes the question; what is affiliate marketing to be a crucial quest that deserves a proper attention at a time like this.
What affiliate marketing is not
Quite a number of people appear not to have a clear understanding of what affiliate marketing is. Many people think it is some kind of another online design to scoop money from the unsuspecting public while some see it as a way to making easy money on the internet.
I chose to begin by confronting some misunderstandings in the day to day discourse about marketing, and of course its many areas which include affiliate marketing. Here are what Affiliate Marketing is not:-
1. Another Ponzi Program
In most cases, how people get recruited into affiliate marketing makes it appear as one of those programs that ask you to invite people to join the program for a commission.
Unlike the Ponzi programs, affiliate marketing program do not just ask the new recruits to pay money to join, then go get their own recruits and earn commission from whatever the new recruits pay.
With affiliate marketing, when anyone recruits a new person, the recruiter is duty bound to be involved in training and mentoring the new recruit. This is because their success is intertwined.
2. Some game of Chance
Affiliate marketing is a vocation that requires technical know how to operate successfully. You need to learn the basic rudiments of the vocation with the aim of building a worthwhile business or career out of it.
It is not a trial and error affair where you rely mainly on luck. Just like every other vocation, affiliate marketing requires a good deal of effort to operate as a business for anyone to succeed in it.
As a matter of fact, if you do not learn and understand the fundamentals of operating it, achieving anything tangible in the vocation will be almost impossible.
3. It is not a get-rich-quick
Because it is a vocation, career or business, affiliate marketing requires commitment to a serious work, adequate time devoted to it and patience to grow and develop the business to a rewarding level. If you are looking out for some quick bucks, then it is a no place to go.
With the understanding above, then the question of what is affiliate marketing becomes very relevant.
What is Affiliate Marketing?
Affiliate marketing is that body of ideas, knowledge and skills used to promote products through the information management technology (internet mainly) for the benefit of the producer, the product consumers and the promoters, called publishers. You will not be wrong to call it a vocation, a business or a career; because you can build any of these three phenomena out of affiliate marketing, depending on how you approach it.
In the affiliate marketing model, there are three parties involved.
1. The producers otherwise called the advertisers
2. The promoters known as publishers
3. The buyers or consumers.
4. The fourth is a silent but very important part of the equation. The platform and its owner/managers – The Affiliate Marketing Brokers
The diagram shows what affiliate marketing is and the relationship that exists between and among the parties involved.
This represent the producer or someone / an organization that makes a product available to be sold.
Products vary in classification. Goods are physical products such as cloth, shoes, cars, car accessories, etc while services range from online training to digital solutions.
In the context of affiliate marketing, the advertiser is not only a producer of a product, he/she is such that has subscribed to an affiliate marketing ideals and principles.
Roles and Responsibilities of the Advertiser
It is the responsibility of the Advertiser to sign up to an affiliate program and subscribe to the requirements and obligations in the affiliate program agreement.
1. To make the product or service available
2. To give guidelines and rules of engagement for publishers
3. To ensure that all contractual obligations about sales are met including handling product returns
4. To pay all accruing commissions
Benefits of Affiliate Marketing to Producers (Advertisers)
Reduction in the advertisement cost
The company do not need to expend resources to develop advertisement materials. This being supplied free of charge by the publishers who only get paid a percentage of actual sales. This is contrary to what the conventional practice with advertisement where companies will pay advertising agencies, either the advertising campaign yield a return or not.
Opportunity to reach a larger audience
Given the fact that the internet covers the entire world, through affiliate marketing, goods and services can be presented to people in any part of the world
Increase in market share and income
Accessibility to larger audience enhances market share for producers. Invariably, increased market share makes increase in revenue a possibility.
If you are a producer and will like to take advantage of the benefits of affiliate marketing, you can check any of these organizations
The publisher in the context of affiliate marketing is that person who uses his/her online space to promote products for the advertiser and earn a commission when a sale is made through is/her effort.
This can involve building a website and the use of social media network.
In the affiliate marketing equation, the position of the publisher is quite serious for many reasons.
Because the publisher only earn an income when a sale is made, it then becomes important that a publisher that wants to achieve success must learn the needed skills to promote products online.
Also, the competition is getting keener by the day, succeeding in affiliate marketing requires innovation and appropriate use of affiliate marketing tools.
Many people exercise the fear of not being tech-savvy. Their is no panic, because there are people who have being in the trade long enough to understand the terrain and are willing to train and mentor others. Such are the folks in Wealthy Affiliates.
Benefits to Publishers
Affiliate marketing creates opportunity for people to utilize their potentials. As an affiliate marketer, you have a free hand to be as creative as you can in promoting the products that you are interested in
Affiliate marketing allows you to be your own boss. Although this can be risky for people who cannot exercise self-discipline. Equally, it may push people to the extreme of being to harsh on themselves. Either way, affiliate marketing provides you with an opportunity to be in control of your time.
Flexibility to operate. You do not need to be a 9am to 5pm person. You can work anytime and anywhere.
Global connectivity and networking
Affiliate marketing provides opportunity for marketers to connect and network with people in other climes anywhere in the world. It is also a platform for people to work with and network with people from different parts of the world from the confines of their abodes.
Exposure to world-class training and mentoring
Affiliate marketing gives marketers the opportunity to learn new skills and acquire modern innovative techniques of promoting products.
It is great fun
You can not just be bored as an affiliate marketer because you will not be compelled to work on any product that you are not interested in. Affiliate marketing is designed in a way that makes you work on the area that is of interest (niche) to you as a marketer. While you earn money on one side, you are equally deriving fulfillment, pleasure and joy in what you are doing. You are happy with yourself and with what you are doing.
Just like every other human endeavor, affiliate marketing rewards financially. What you earn from the venture is dependent largely on what you do or do not do. That is why knowledge is very important.
Click Here if you want to start affiliate marketing as an online business.
You can check the links below for examples of affiliate marketing activity.
How do I become an Affiliate Marketer
As I have mentioned earlier, affiliate marketing is a serious affair that must be properly understood and practiced, if you want to succeed in it.
Training and mentoring are a huge part of it. You need the training and mentoring.
Networking with other marketers is also crucial. Some knowledge can only be acquired through experience. This is why networking with other affiliate marketers is important. There are pieces of information that will be of help to you that you can not acquire from reading any book. You have to interact with others.
Check my review on Wealthy Affiliate Here for more insight on the training and mentoring.
If you are interested in becoming an affiliate marketer, click Here. I am waiting to help you get started.
The third in the affiliate marketing equation is the consumer. Every human being is a consumer of one product or another.
Today more and more people are using the internet for various reasons. Affiliate marketing provides opportunity for buyers to know more about a product by a quick search on the Internet.
Product review by affiliate marketers is another way by which affiliate marketing is helping consumers to know about the product and the supplier.
Information about product price is made available to consumers through affiliate marketing. Buyers are now able to compare prices in the comfort of their homes.
Importantly for the consumers, the services provided by affiliate marketers are completely free.
Affiliate Marketing Brokers
This group is a silent participant in the affiliate marketing scheme. They are the organizations that provide platforms for the Producers (Advertisers) and the Affiliate Marketers (Publishers) to meet and do their business. They are the market places where advertisers and publishers meet.
Their responsibility include brokering the relationship between the advertiser and the publishers by ensuring that each party meets its contractual obligations and get its due accordingly.
Some of these organizations are:
Some advertisers administer their affiliate marketing program in house.
Finally, information technology is the way now and the future, either as a producer, an aspiring marketer or a consumer, affiliate marketing is a help to you. Embracing it now will help you and make you get things done with more ease.
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