It seems like a daily ritual: a client calls me wanting assistance with his SEO initiatives and asks me what keywords he or she should optimize. I, of course, appreciate the vote of confidence, but I’m not his SEO consultant. Which brings up a good question – what are the best keywords?
This same question comes up as a PPC Affiliate Marketer. You start a campaign and now need to generate an Adwords keyword list to send traffic to your landing pages. This can be tricky, as many newbie affiliates loose their shirts in PPC, because they THINK they have a great keyword list when in fact, it’s too deep, and not wide enough.
One of the 1st things Amit teaches in his affiliate training is that effective keyword research is one of the most important skill sets you’ll need to develop as an Affiliate, especially if you are to reach Super Affiliate status. So lets go over going Deep vs. Wide.
Suppose you’re a newbie affiliate, promoting a hypothetical virtual car dealer. You know nothing about cars, so you head over to wordtracker to come up with a bunch of keywords to bid on Google.
Your “thorough” list includes all the fathomable keywords with the root “car”. So you take your list thinking you’ll make a killing, only to find out you generated very litle traffic and consequently zero commissions. Here’s why: When you are searching for a “car” on google, more than likely you won’t include the word “car” as part of your keyword, but probably will use sports sedan, convertible coupe, Lexus IS250, Cadillac Escalade, SUV, etc. These are descriptive or synonimous keywords (as Amit describes them) that people will search for. That’s the difference between going deep vs. going wide. So always go wide first. When when you find which of these keywords provide the best traffic, THEN go deep.
I have this conversation multiple times each day with clients. Hmm, maybe I am their SEO consultant.
I need to charge more…
So if you haven’t heard, my team at the illustrious co. I work for, IZEA, launched a blog outreach/social media campaign for Kmart a few weeks ago with enormous success. (You haven’t heard? WHERE have YOU been?). The campaign had some compelling elements: A few influential bloggers were given a $500 gift card to Kmart and they chart their buying experience at the store and create sponsored blog posts about it. They then hold a contest to give away another $500 gift card to one of their readers, who is chosen at random from either a comment left at the post or from retweets done on twitter, mentioning the item they wold buy at Kmart if they won and linking back to the post.
Thousands of tweets were done, pushing the brand Kmart into the dynamic realm we call social media. A huge amount of buzz was generated for Kmart, encouraging consumers to give Kmart a shot for their business this holiday season. Take a look at the graph that displays Kmart’s SMI (Social Media Index). SMI is a tool which provides a snapshot in realtime that helps measure conversations about a brand. Notice the huge jump after we launched the campaign.
So why does this work? At IZEA, we strive to drive deeper and more connected relationships between Brands and consumers. This in turn builds brand and product advocacy resulting in what really matters – growth, competitive differentiation and affinity. In this economic climate, it’s something ALL brands need.
I’ve been following Super Affiliate Marketer Amit Mehta for quite sometime now. He was a guest visitor on the Black Ink Project that Jeremy Palmer masterfully (seriously!) put together earlier this year and I was captivated by his success and his wealth of knowledge in the space. Affiliate PPC marketing is something I’ve always been intrigued with and wished to learn. Amit is a PPC guru and his blog posts consistently provided tips of the golden nugget variety.
As it turns out, Amit decided to teach others what he knows in an online coaching program called PPC Classroom2. The course offers a series of in-depth modules on becoming an affiliate shogun. The course teaches students how to:
Find & evaluate Affiliate offers and niches that will perform
Create effective keyword lists
Create profitable Adword campaigns
Create presell landing pages that convert
Do split testing and bid optimization
I joined the course to test the waters and it reached capacity right after I enrolled. I’ll periodically post about my progress and setbacks (gasp)…
As more and more companies are establishing their businesses online, affiliate programs have become dramatically popular as a viable internet marketing tool. Assigned affiliates get rewarded for directing traffic and potential customers to a company’s website.
Affiliate marketing can be a great way to earn extra income. Finding a niche market with products and services you trust and believe in is the first step to success. There are tremendous affiliate programs which offer you an abundance of tools and materials to promote and market their products. However, what you do with those tools and materials is entirely up to you. You can be just another affiliate or a super affiliate.
Benefits To Being A Super Affiliate
The most significant benefit to being a super affiliate is the income. Many super affiliates make + six figures simply promoting the products and services of others.
Additionally, if you’re one of the main contributors to a company’s affiliate program they’re going to take care of you. You may receive a higher commission payout, be the first to make use of new marketing materials and get the direct manager support you need when you need it.
Here are some of the basics successful strategies many super affiliates use:
Step One – Commit to publishing content on a regular basis. Content has proven time and again to be the best sales tool available to affiliate marketers. Sure, thin salesletter landing pages may provide some conversions, but these are frowened upon by Google and are more and more seen as spammy by the more informed web navigator. Nothing, not even strategically placed ad copy works as well as providing quality content that pre-sells any product that you’re promoting on your website.
Possible content includes:
- Blogs posts
- Social networking via forums, social networking sites, and chat rooms
- Press releases
Step Two – Track and test. Make sure you know where your prospects are coming from, what motivates them to click through and what information they read and respond to and then give them what they need. Tracking and testing is the only way to hone your affiliate program into a smooth running, money making machine.
Step Three – Use the provided marketing materials and be willing to take it a step further. Many affiliate programs do a great job of providing their affiliate with ready to marketing materials including:
- Banner ads
- Email copy
- Free promotional reports
Use the materials your affiliate manager has provided. It’s been tested and developed for results. That being said, be sure to create your own content too. Even as an affiliate you are your own company and your website needs to reflect your personality and brand. Building a community around your website and providing valuable content is a sure way to create a following that trusts you and your credibility, which will result in click throughs and affiliate sales.
Step Four – Pre-sell. The good news is that your job as an affiliate is to pre-sell products and services. Pre-selling means your content, whether it is a review, article, tutorial, course, or blog post, speaks honestly about the products and services you promote. Pre-selling is about providing value to your website visitors and prospects, making them comfortable with you and your authority to generate interest and a click through to the company website, where the selling happens.
Step Five – Follow up. Just like your affiliate manager follows up with you to see how you’re doing and what you need, follow up with your prospects. A great way to do this unobtrusively is to create a lead list by providing a newsletter visitors can subscribe to, a free report, or any number of products in exchange for an email address and the permission to contact them with valuable information and special promotions.
Becoming a Super Affiliate is an awesome way to go if you want to build a Internet Marketing (IM) business. Find products and services you trust and believe in and then create a strategy to share information to your target audience. Test and track your efforts, focus on providing value to your prospects and leave the selling to the companies you represent. Helping others live better lives, without having to provide the products or services personally, is a great way to make a living.