by Evelyn Fielding
How do top affiliate programs “sell” information products to affiliates? An analysis of PayDotCom.com, e-Junkie.com, and Clickbank.com product marketplaces reveals 17 best practices for affiliate program managers. Think about information product promotion to JV partners differently—you’re not trying to get them to buy the products; you want them to sell the products. Sell the selling!
1. Take the time to create a good pitch and landing page for potential affiliates. You spend all that effort on pitching customers—yet you need affiliates to bring customers to you. Don’t just expect the product sell itself. Tell potential affiliates all about their potential when they promote your information product.
2. Never tell potential JV partners how profitable the product is “going” to be or that it is “high converting.” Tell them how it performs now. Affiliates aren’t willing to take a leap of faith with you—they want performance.
3. Never use the words amazing, astonishing, great, big commissions, incredible, love, or just launched. These words are pure hype and a waste of precious character count in a very short pitch space.
4. Also, don’t waste your time telling JVs that a product is easy to sell—make it easy to sell by providing backend support through an affiliate program. In the marketplace pitch, tell affiliates about your backend support.
5. If you’re a new seller to pay.com, e-junkie.com, or clickbank.com, don’t tell affiliates that. Tell them how the information product performed in your testing or on other marketplaces. (You did test the product, didn’t you?)
6. Let the title and automatic information speak for themselves and spend your 255 characters pitching to potential affiliates, not potential customers. The landing page contains the customer pitch, and affiliates aren’t buying your product—they’re promoting it to their own audience.
7. Use every single character available. Don’t just put in a one-liner and expect affiliates to click through to the landing page. Use sensible abbreviations whenever possible (aff for affiliate, comms for commissions, numbers instead of spelling out, etc.) to save space.
8. Use tagwords and keywords extensively. Many potential JV partners search marketplaces rather than just picking the top 10 in a particular category. Bring on the SEO to increase your chances of being spotted by niche affiliate marketers.
9. Sell the stability of the producer—how long you’ve been in business, your conversion ratio or refund ratio, how many products have been sold. These quick statistics let affiliates know you’re not a PLR seller or a one-off product producer.
10. Offer fair payouts on more expensive products, not high payouts on low-priced info products. Affiliates want to make money online, and good affiliates can sell high-priced products.
11. Promote your affiliate landing page URL address in your marketplace listing. Adding this URL gives potential JV partners a place to investigate you and your information products.
12. Promote your affiliate newsletter, if you have one, so JV partners know your affiliate program is strong and stable. Affiliates are grateful to have this backend support.
13. Try to avoid dating your affiliate marketplace listing unless you make changes every six months. Saying something is revolutionary in 2009 doesn’t speak very highly of 2011.
14. A high commission percentage is important, but not primary. Dollar amount per sale is more convincing. Good affiliates go for realistic conversion ratios that bring them more money every month.
15. ClickBank has added a Facebook Like button to every marketplace listing. Send your affiliates an email immediately (if you can) and tell them to click it. If you can’t email them, tell them on your affiliate landing page to click Like. Social media marketing has finally reached the affiliate marketplace!
16. Make sure your product is categorized correctly. Please don’t put your information product into every category trying to get more attention. This is a waste of your time and won’t attract niche affiliate marketers.
17. Please, for heaven’s sake, proofread your affiliate marketplace pitch. Please!
Of course, it’s nice to be in the top of the affiliate marketplace sort but until you get there, use your marketplace space to promote the program to affiliates. You’ll get to the top eventually as your information product starts to show results.