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What is Affiliate Marketing and How Do You Use It to Make Money?

Thu January 03 2019 9:23 pm
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The number-one question asked by affiliate marketing beginners is “What is affiliate marketing?” Here is a brief guide to affiliate marketing techniques.

An Overview of The Basics of Affiliate Marketing
If you follow a blogger, podcaster, or YouTuber, then you’ve probably experienced affiliate marketing. Thanks to affiliate marketing, almost anybody can monetize their passion, which leads to a fun and unconventional work life (four-hour work week, anyone? … probably not). When your favorite social influencers mention “brand deals,” they’re essentially talking about affiliate marketing.

So, what is affiliate marketing? It’s a way for anyone to earn a commission by promoting the products/services of another person or company through a process called revenue sharing. If you’re looking to get out of the rat race and want to know more about affiliate marketing and revenue sharing, keep reading.

The Three Parts of The Revenue Sharing Process

1. The Seller
This participant can be anybody from one person, to a group of individuals, to a large company. The seller has a product/service they’re looking to sell, and they want help doing so. In order to reach their goals, they try to attract affiliates to help out.

2. The Affiliate
Just like the seller, the affiliate can be an individual, an organization, or a business. The affiliate will officially attach themselves to a seller and promote their product/service to people within their network. This can be done through a variety of platforms, such as social media, e-mail, websites, etc. For each sale that is made due to the promotion performed by the affiliate, they will earn a commission from the seller.

3. The Network
The network is where sellers and affiliates join forces and monetize their efforts. This is done on any of the platforms that we listed above, and it’s where the consumers (who may or may not be aware that they’re a part of this process) will discover the promotions and consider buying the product/service. Their purchases are tracked via promo codes in order for the seller to properly compensate the affiliate.

Seems simple enough, right? Affiliate marketing can be easy to handle once it’s established, but breaking into it is what’s difficult. Chances are 99% of those rich Internet stars you see that you can’t believe are making money doing what they’re doing (and maybe you’re jealous of their success) started out with affiliate marketing. But they had to work their way up to get to a point where they can use this strategy to create a career.

If you’re still confused about what affiliate marketing looks like, take a look at our example below.

A Rundown and Analysis of Vans Affiliate Marketing

Vans & The Vincent Van Gogh Museum in Amsterdam. Vans (the shoe & clothing company) has an affiliate marketing program where they look for people who are creative and feel passionately about their product. One of their most popular affiliate marketing campaigns was Vans X Van Gogh, a collaboration with the Van Gogh Museum in Amsterdam. Vans created a collection of shoes and apparel featuring famous Van Gogh work from the museum. The promotion resonated instantly with consumers and was a huge hit. In this case, Vans was the seller, the museum acted as the affiliate, and a portion of the profits made by the museum from the Vans’ sales were donated to help preserve Vincent Van Gogh’s artwork for future generations.

Brothers Paul Van Doren and James Van Doren, Gordon C Lee, and Serge D’Elia opened the first Vans store under the name The Van Doren Rubber Company in Anaheim, California in 1966. The business manufactured shoes and sold them directly to the public.

Affiliate marketing is a powerful tool, and you don’t need some crazy new idea to use this strategy. It’s all about monetizing passions which may not have been profitable otherwise. Thanks to affiliate marketing, the new American dream is now getting paid to do whatever you want, as long as you have a person or business who will pay you to promote their stuff. For more resources that help answer the question, “What is affiliate marketing?”, click here ( …).



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