Category Archives for "Internet Marketing"

10 Tips for Using Affiliate Marketing on Your Blog

Affiliate programs are something that we all have probably seen or at least heard of. If you haven’t, you’ve probably been living under not 1 rock, but 74 different colored rocks.

A is for Amandaaaaaaa!
Creative Commons License photo credit: Justin Marty

I’d like to share with you my top 10 tips for using affiliate marketing on your own blog so that you can make more money.

  1. Consider Your Audience– As a blogger, you should already be aware of who your readers are and what makes them tick. No, it’s not 2 double A batteries or even a C battery, but a brain and some other organs 😉 By knowing who is visiting your blog and who your daily/weekly/monthly readers are, you can help answer questions like: Are they shopping for specific products? Might they be looking for related products or accessories? What would get them to buy? By starting with your reader in mind rather than the product, you’ll be serving your readers as well as making a few dollars on the side. Win-Win 😉
  2. Genuine Recommendations and Personal Endorsements Always Work Best- There are hundreds of thousands of products, services, and books that you can recommend to your blog readers, the problem is that it’s not as simple as randomly putting some links on your blog and hoping that someone buys. Your blog readers come back each day because something about YOU resonates with them. (For me, it’s probably my juggling skills and my ability to ride a unicycle…or maybe it’s my dashing good looks or my sense of humor? I don’t know, you tell me) Your readers have at least some level of trust and respect for you, and one of the best ways to lose that respect and trust is to try to sell your readers things that you don’t feel will benefit them.
  3. Link to Quality Products-We all like to buy the best products. Your readers are no different and are more likely to make a purchase if you’ve found the best product for them. Choose products and companies with good reputations and quality sales pages.
  4. Contextual Deep Links Work Best-It’s not all about just throwing up a banner here and hoping that people click on the stuff and buy it. Include links within your blog articles and mention these links within a video. Create a clear call-to-action.
  5. Consider Positioning of Links-One of the biggest things for adsense optimization is placing ads in your sites “hot spots” (like the top of a left sidebar, inside content, at the end of posts above comments, etc) The same thing works for affiliate marketing. *wink wink* *nudge nudge*Ben_winky
    Creative Commons License photo credit: senkiwboo
  6. Traffic Levels Are Important-You need to realize that traffic levels do have an effect on how many sales you make. The more people that see your well-placed, relevant, and well-designed affiliate links, the more likely it is that one of them will make a purchase. So don’t just work on building great links, work on building a readership for your blog. I recommend joining a Tribe for this. The best tribe to join is the Tribe Syndication Association on Facebook.
  7. Diversify Without Clutter-It’s just like when buying stocks or investing in anything, DON’T PUT ALL YOUR EGGS IN 1 BASKET! There are plenty of products to link to, so there is no need to just work on one. At the same time, you shouldn’t clutter your blog with too many affiliate program links. If you do, you run the risk of diluting the effectiveness of your links, and it could disillusion your readership.
  8. Be Transparent-Don’t try to fool your readers, unless it’s April 1st and it’s time for a good joke 😉 Trying to hide affiliate links is something that we all have learned to do. It’s something that is recommended in all the courses and something that seems 100% right to do. There’s something I like to do though which is tell people when something is an affiliate link. Try putting a note above, besides, or below your affiliate links to let people know it is an affiliate link. Your readers will appreciate it and will a lot of the times end up buying from your link because you’ve been so transparent. To learn more about being transparent in social media, check out this post; Transparency in Social Media
  9. Combine with Other Revenue Streams-Affiliate marketing can be done along-side of adsense. While there is the potential for one to take the focus away from the other, there is also the potential for them to work hand in hand, as different readers respond to different approaches.
  10. Track Results-Not Track TEAM, but track your results. Most affiliate programs have some type of tracking or statistics package that will allow you to watch which links are effective. Some packages are better than others, but most allow you to see what is selling and what isn’t. Watching your results can help you plan future affiliate efforts. Keep track of what positions for links work well, which products sell, what wording around links works well, etc., and then use this information as you plan your future affiliate strategies.

There you have it. Tips to be a successful Affiliate Marketer. Now get out there and TAKE ACTION!

3 Reasons Quality Backlinks Are Better

I was doing research on the importance of backlinking and was going to determine the top 3 reasons that quality backlinks are better than a large quantity of backlinks that aren’t quality.

Here’s what I’ve found:

1) Quality backlinks are ranked higher through the Page Ranking system Google uses. A PR1 website is not a quality site to be linking to, although it may increase it’s PR in the future. At all times, if you can get backlinks from PR 6-10 websites, your site will ultimately rank up higher.
2) If you have a ton of backlinks from irrelevant websites, this actually does more harm than good for your site. Therefore, don’t buy packages that try to sell you 100+ backlinks unless they are relevant sites and provide you with a linkback from a PR website of 6 or above.

(Example: You have a marketing website that’s linking up to porn websites for backlinks, which is a typical scenario for mass linking campaigns. This harms your SEO in the long-term because it’s irrelevant sites linking to yours. The better way to do this is develop relationships with 10 marketers in your niche and do a link-for-link exchange. This shows up as a marketing blog linking to another marketing blog and looks good in Google’s eyes)
3) Google is working on a patent that will deal with the popularity of sites that are being linked to & how trustworthy a site is that you link to from your own website.

What does this mean for you? This means you could possibly get into trouble for linking to a bad site.

To prepare for this now we should chose relevant sites to link with, sites that don’t have an enormous amount of outbound links on a page and ones that don’t practice bad SEO techniques. By doing all of these things we can reduce the risk of having our reciprocal links discounted.

If you’d like to read more about the importance of backlinking, I provide another article here: http://whoschrishughes.com/backlink-importance

Please feel free to share if this helps!

Is Collaboration Good for Entrepreneur’s?

Collaboration is something that seems to be a major issue for Entrepreneur’s. We are often worried that “If I share my strategies with other Entrepreneur’s, won’t they steal my idea?”

The problem with that type of thinking is that you are coming from a mindset that is of a lack and you need to switch your mindset to one of excess. There is more than enough idea’s, clients and customers to go around and if you switch your mindset, you will notice that you have more than enough of all the resources that you need.

I used the collaboration of Jay-Z, Rihanna and Kanye West in the song “We Run This Town”. In the video I get into details of how collaboration allows for you to have more exposure to your future customers. By collaborating as Entrepreneur’s and doing guest blog posts, creating products as a team, or even having a Mastermind session, we are able to leverage each and everyone’s network who is doing the collaboration.

It’s crazy how we feel that we can’t always connect with other Entrepreneur’s because they are viewed as our “competition” instead of as our potential partners.

The power of partnerships

Partnerships allow for us to leverage the strengths of other people. For example, here’s a story 🙂

Joe is an average guy who started a business taking wedding photo’s. Joe was a great photographer who was exceptional at capturing the perfect light and taking the picture at the exact time when the couple looks it’s best. However, Joe absolutely has no idea how he is going to find people who want to hire him to take their photo’s. Joe tries his warm market and soon runs dry of customers.

Joe heads to a meeetup.com group of business marketing professionals and meets Sam. Sam has grown up with marketing in his veins. He practically bleeds out amazing marketing campaigns. Joe and Sam decide to try out a little deal in which Sam gets 50% of the sale for all referrals he gives to Joe. Joe starts having people request his services at a boost of 10% in the first month!How awesome, what a great concept! However, there is a problem…

Joe can’t keep up with the new flow of customer’s!

Yes, this can happen. If you take the time to collaborate with people who’s STRENGTHS are your WEAKNESSES, then you can see a significant boost in your business. There really is no point in focusing on your weaknesses, if you suck at something then you should just collaborate with someone who’s great at what you aren’t! Focus on your strengths!

The world is an amazing place and the Internet allows for us to connect instantly with experts in any field. Just hop onto Twitter and you’ll see how many people there are that you can meet and eventually develop these relationships into partnerships.

Now, do like Joe did and start to play your strengths and find others to take care of your weaknesses!

Look at the difference it makes in the size of reach that the collaboration of Jay-Z, Rihanna and Kanye West have…

All of these circles contain the individual reach of all these artists… Now look at what happens when they collaborate.

The dark area in the middle is where your followers will start to follow what the other artist’s are doing along with them still following you.

With Twitter, you will notice that you get more followers when you get Re-Tweeted by people who have large followings (10K or more followers)

Now how much more powerful will your influence be if you start to get followers and customer’s from your competitors.. You’ll gain more customer’s and more loyal fans!