This week Hazel and Michelle discuss the benefits of affiliate marketing.
Often referred to as “passive income,” (and yes, it can be) affiliates often find that putting some time and effort into creating content helps boost sales, makes the product/service owner happy, and adds revenue to your bottom line.
Whether you do affiliate marketing for what Michelle’s grandmother called “pin money” (basically fun money), or as part of your living income strategy, affiliate sales can truly be an asset to your annual income.
In this episode Michelle and Hazel discuss some of the content that successful affiliates create, pitfalls to avoid, and the partnerships created when you all succeed together.
Speaker 1 00:00:07 Welcome to Audacity Marketing with Hazel Quimpo and Michelle Frechette. On this podcast, we’ll challenge you to think differently and break free of the same old strategies. We’ll push you out of your comfort zone and encourage you to think outside the box. So take notes, make bold decisions, and be audacious.
Speaker 2 00:00:33 Hello, Michelle.
Speaker 3 00:00:35 Hey, Hazel.
Speaker 2 00:00:37 Well, welcome to another episode of Marketing with Audacity. Audacity Marketing. That’s the name of this podcast, . It’s Friday, it’s extremely Friday for, uh, there. Michelle and I both, we,
Speaker 3 00:00:48 We should get some SEO’s, both directions.
Speaker 2 00:00:51 I mean, I bet we probably had, you know, some libations earlier at some point. Anyway, here we go. Uh, we have very exciting talk today. We’re gonna talk about all things affiliate marketing. Yes. And I wanna give a little background of like, why we’re gonna talk about this. Like, Michelle, you were saying, you were talking about this kind of from the business standpoint of what it is to set up like a affiliate team and all of that kind of stuff. Can you tell me a little bit about that angle of affiliate marketing?
Speaker 3 00:01:20 Yeah. So as, as the company whose products are being sold, you know, you’re looking to recruit people to do affiliate marketing for you. You wanna make sure that they’ve got good messages. You’ve gotta make sure that you’re providing them with good, um, graphics. So they’ve got banners, they’ve got social ads, they’ve got things that will, will drive sales back to you, including, you know, those links that are, are, um, affiliate links, right? So that it’s, I know that’s the person that made the sale. They don’t go, Hey, by the way, I just made a sale. It was me, I promise. Right? and, and how you put all that together. There’s tools involved, you know, um, where I work, we have, we use impact.com, which is, um, a dashboard and a way to manage all of those kinds of things and what it looks like from that perspective and why you would, would invite people to be, uh, affiliate marketers and who you look for and how you vet them and all those kinds of things. But I more interested in talking about how to be a good affiliate marketer, because that’s where the money is, right? That’s where the Yeah. Mm-hmm. . So like, I made two sales recently, just two sales, um, by send, by giving somebody my affiliate link. That was it. I’ve, I didn’t, I haven’t even written about it. I haven’t put it out on social. I literally just shared links to a hosting company, and at the end of this month, I have $153 coming to me. That’s not chump change. Right.
Speaker 2 00:02:39 I love it. I love it. I think, um, affiliate marketing, obviously nothing new, but it’s so funny how many times for this audience looks like, assume we’re talking to small agency owners, solopreneurs, freelancers, you know, out there hustling for other clients, and your next proposal and all these sort of, and the more affiliate income you have as like bread and butter coming through, the more, the less you have to get a new income, a new one each month. And here’s what’s exciting that I really like about affiliate marketing, especially in the world of agency owners and creative entrepreneurs, is, is we’re problem solvers. Yeah. And what’s great about affiliate marketing is like you’re really just helping someone solve their problem. And I’m like, heck yeah, I wanna kick back for that. I’m helping you solve your problem. And you get a kickback of it. And it feels, it’s like such a natural way to make money if done in this sort of aud, uh, what we’ll call audacious way mm-hmm. with is through authenticity and without being spammy, which affiliate marketing can risk being.
Speaker 3 00:03:43 Exactly. For sure. So
Speaker 2 00:03:45 Michelle, what’s your, what’s your number one tip? Like how did you close your two recent sales?
Speaker 3 00:03:49 Okay, so they came in from two different areas. One was a former customer of mine who I built a website for about seven years ago. He let it expire. It doesn’t exist anymore. He’s getting all these calls from Google, telling him how much he traffic he’s missing. And so he reaches out to me and says, I wanna get that website back. So we registered the domain, and now I said, but I’m not hosting people anymore. Like I, when I was freelancing, I would host people, right? I said, mm-hmm . So you’ll, you’ll need your own hosting. Here’s the link to my hosting. Yep. I said, and I, and I fully disclosed, I said, I do get a part of that ’cause it’s an affiliate sale, but you’re not paying any more than you would if you went directly through the company. Exactly. It’s my link to the company.
Speaker 3 00:04:27 So I was, you know, full, full disclosure and all that kind of stuff. He was happy to do it. So not only did I make the money that I charged him for the website, but I made like 75 bucks or whatever it was on him choosing that, hosting the other one. Somebody just posted in a local Slack channel, Hey, I’m looking for a new host. I don’t like my current host. Um, does anybody have a host? I can, you know, can that you recommend? And I said, yeah, here’s a host I recommend if you decide to go with them, let me know. I will share my affiliate link with you. And she reached out, she said, I’m actually gonna go a different direction. I said, that’s fine, no problem. A week later she says, I changed my mind. What’s your affiliate link? And she, and she bought, and I saw there’s my other sale right there.
Speaker 2 00:05:06 I love it. So just sort of natural problem solving that’s coming up Yep. In these type of conversations regularly. And I think about that extrapolated to productivity software to hosting, to, I mean, your cell phone service to all kinds of stuff. It makes me think it would make me want to add that kind of content regularly to the content I’m what we’re producing. Mm-hmm. . So now for instance, whether my company or myself as a thought leader is producing content of any sort, like let’s say you’re one of these chat g p t Bross, uh, chat. G p t actually doesn’t have an affiliate program, but I’m sure that chat g t bros, bros in the world have an audience. Let’s do someone more authentic. I don’t like those guys. Let’s you and I, right? Yeah. Uh, you know what, let’s do ourselves as a case study, Michelle.
Speaker 2 00:05:51 We don’t have an affiliate. We’re not, uh, doing any affiliate income for this program right now. And in fact, it’d be a great way because we are regularly mentioning products and regularly talking about things. So let’s use ourselves as a case study of how we would grow affiliate for this. Mm-hmm. , I think what I would do is like our various topics that we have, I would try to build those into like, let’s plan more ahead of time about the products we’re gonna mention. And if we think about those ahead of time. So for instance, today we’re talking about affiliate software. If we came to the table with like, oh, here’s like three tools that I think everybody would be really helpful with, and then at the end of the episode we’re like, Hey, use this tool. This is marketing and action folks.
Speaker 3 00:06:31 That’s right. That’s right. .
Speaker 2 00:06:34 What, uh, what else has worked for people that you’ve seen? Michelle,
Speaker 3 00:06:38 Um, blogs. So blog posting with authenticity. When you can, you’ve used a product, you can write about the product, but you’re authentic about your use of the product. So let’s say that you, let’s say chat, G p t did have an affiliate program, and you are writing a review of chat g p t, you’re giving the good, the bad, the ugly, why you like it, why you still recommend it in spite of its downfalls. And at the bottom of that link you say, and here’s my affiliate link. If you’re interested in purchasing more, I do make a small, you know, small amount off the purchase of the sale or the purchase of the sale, the purchase of the product, . And, um, but you will pay no more. It’s, and it’s super, super important when you are actually providing links to make sure that people understand that you do make something outta it. In, in some states it’s illegal to post affiliate links and make money without sharing with people that you’re actually making money off of it because your entire blog post is in a fact. In fact, in most ways, a sales pitch, even if you’re talking about things authentic, authentically, um, it’s a sales pitch. And so you can’t make a sale without telling somebody that you’re making money off that sale. So you do have to disclose that, and I just wanna put that out there at the beginning to make sure people are aware.
Speaker 2 00:07:47 Yep. Great tip. Uh, and that means across social, across your website in the various places as well. Um, with the world of affiliate marketing and being authentic, I think, uh, one thing that you’ve always done really well is not every time you mention the product has to have a link. Um, a lot of things people mention the product and talk about it without linking to it directly, or sometimes you’re not allowed to. For instance, Pinterest, Pinterest is actually a great spot for B two B software type links for small businesses. Um, but you can’t do affiliate links on a lot of stuff unless you’re deep into like whatever Pinterest program is. Um, it doesn’t mean you can’t get people back to your website and people are still gonna see and coming back to you. It’s another way to continue the traffic continue. S e o and I would do affiliate even on places where you can’t get a direct link. Mm-hmm. , like, whether that’s Instagram or other spots. Do you have any experience with, I know you posted about brands just like regularly on Twitter without posting a link,
Speaker 3 00:08:44 Right? Yeah. I talk about those kinds of things a lot. And what usually happens if somebody is interested in learning more is they’ll dmm me or they’ll respond, they’ll reply to that post and say, Hey, can you tell me more? And I’m like, Hey, let’s have a conversation offline. And then I, you know, have that conversation, share what whatever I’ve got to share and say, here’s my affiliate link. If you’re more, if you’re interested in learning more, if you don’t wanna use the affiliate link, that’s fine. You can go directly through the company. Um, because ultimately this is not my bread and butter, right? This is extra money. This is Christmas money, this is travel money. This is, what did my grandmother used to call it? Like bingo money or pin money, I guess they used to call pin money. Like this is the extras. Oh yeah, yeah. Yep. I don’t even know what pin money means, but I remember her saying that. But, but yeah, this is, this is the extras. This is like, this is dinner on Friday night at a steakhouse instead of ordering a pizza. That’s what affiliate money is for me. Other people, it’s part of their income revenue stream planning. Right. But for me, this is just extra. Uh, and so if, if people don’t use my affiliate link, I’m not crushed . Right. It’s fine. Right,
Speaker 2 00:09:42 Right. ,
Speaker 3 00:09:43 But hey, if you wanna, are
Speaker 2 00:09:44 You Michelle, do you use, um, Amazon affiliate links? Much personally, I
Speaker 3 00:09:49 Used to, but I have it in quite a while, but I’m also haven’t been recommending products and sharing products that way either. Um hmm. But it’s, Hmm, but that’s a good idea. I might have to think about that some more. ,
Speaker 2 00:10:00 I was, I, I was interested because, uh, it’s one, it’s the one that I use the most regularly still. Um, I always come back to that, or if I’m ever producing content, even for a client that is looking for easy affiliate links, for instance, um, we’ve been doing a lot of, uh, work for like the entrepreneur type businesses. So therapists as they’re branching out of their practice, but into more, you know, classes and that sort of thing, man. Um, Amazon affiliate links been working so well for them. And, and in a very natural way, it’s all of the kind of curriculum and business that they’re, and books that they’re already always recommending to everybody that signs up and now they get money on all of that. And it’s been a really nice, like, steady income stream to see that. And I wonder if like we, as you know, um, agencies and things can offer that to some clients, certain niche clients as well in a, in a natural way. Yeah,
Speaker 3 00:10:48 That’s a really good idea. I hadn’t thought about that, but that’s, that’s definitely a very good idea. .
Speaker 2 00:10:54 So what do you have your eyes on for something that you’re, so you’re getting a little bit of like, traction with some of your affiliate stuff that you’ve been starting. Mm-hmm. , what do you have your eyes on that you wanna move into next? Do you think? So to try to like get some more affiliate?
Speaker 3 00:11:06 I am planning to start personally blogging, so it’s hard for me to blog personally, right? Because I blog for so many other different companies. So I’m writing a lot. Um, but I actually just, just picked up a new gig yesterday from a conversation. Um, for Layer WP I’m gonna start doing, um, uh, review, plugin review and theme reviews because I use that
Speaker 2 00:11:27 Stuff. I saw that
Speaker 3 00:11:28 It’s fun, right? But, and it gives me an opportunity if, and it’s not my blog. So if, um, if Ben already has affiliates pro, you know, affiliate links for the product, they’ll be his. But if he doesn’t, I’ll be using my own affiliate links within there. And of course we always, we will always just close that, but even on my own personal blog, I’m going to start talking about the things that I’m affiliates with, doing those reviews and sharing that out. I just have to figure out, I I, I have, you know, I have Meet michelle.online, which is like my link tree kind of thing. And I do have an affiliate links page there, but I don’t have a blog there because it’s really just supposed to be not a blog. It’s not supposed to be that big site. It’s, it’s like my Link tree site.
Speaker 3 00:12:05 But I have works by michelle.com, which I am pivoting to Michelle for she.com. And I haven’t designed it out yet. It’s, don’t even look at it. Please. It is so outta date and it, it’s cringe. Like even just the icons I chose, I look, I’m like, oh, it’s so cringe. But, um, it’s, you know, accomplished children. My website is just the worst website ever. Uh, but I wanna, I wanna pivot it. I want to reintroduce it probably this fall and through the blog there where I’ve got a lot of content already. I will start to add some of these kinds of things and you know, do affiliate, um, kind of marketing through there as well.
Speaker 2 00:12:43 I love that. I love that. I think, um, and for me, I don’t have a lot of time to spend on affiliate. Like it’s not something I’m similar to you, Michelle, I think I view my affiliate income as like a nice bonus or like, Hey, covers my hosting bill for the month or covers something like that. Yeah. Um, I think the way I do that then is I choose the products I would recommend and I get small amounts for from Amazon, those sorts of things. But then the ones I’m gonna target, I pick ones that ha or have like a really high return. Yeah. And those are things like hosting companies, things like big SaaS companies. Mm-hmm. , um, notion it has a really good one or ones that you have to kind of get accepted into. You get a lot more money back each time you get a click. So it makes the, the effort you put into it worth, worth the time. Right. Um, I always, I kind of recommend staying away if you’re gonna be the type of affiliate marketer that Michelle and I are, which I feel like is an authentic, hey, let’s make some side income. I reckon I’m staying away from these like, affiliate mills that’s just like nonstop. Yeah. I dunno, it feels like seventh graders trying to sell you wrapping paper. Like I’m not sure what, what you’re trying to get.
Speaker 3 00:13:56 And I’m pretty sure every writeup came from Che G P T as well.
Speaker 2 00:14:00 100%.
Speaker 3 00:14:03 I’ll say another tip though is like I get watch the emails that you get from the companies that you are an affiliate for. So I got an email yesterday from a hosting company that for a very short amount of time they’re paying out 200% or $200 for every sale, but you gotta act now. So it would be really beneficial to write that blog post, do a little bit of promotion on social. If people are interested in looking for hosting, now is the time to do it. ’cause I can make a lot more money, but if I just delete every one of those, those, uh, newsletters, I wouldn’t have seen that. So pay attention to your email .
Speaker 2 00:14:37 Yeah, I think it’s great. I think Michelle and I having uh, a lot of insight to both sides of the aisle of affiliate marketing. One thing that’s really important to know is even companies that you might think are big love affiliates and you can get one-on-one conversations with affiliate managers quite easily. Yeah. Like, even if you don’t have much yet, like look them up on LinkedIn and hit them up for whatever company you’re interested in. I wouldn’t you agree with Michelle having worked on both sides, like affiliate marketers will talk to you? Always,
Speaker 3 00:15:06 Always. Well, you know, when you and I have worked together and marketing teams before, you’re looking at the bottom line as the director of marketing mm-hmm. , the affiliate team is looking for their percentage of like, they’re being held responsible for how much is Mark, you know, their salaries and their everything else are part of the overall if they’re not bringing money in through the affiliate programs. So yeah, they want to help you ask for help. Yep. Have those one-on-ones, learn more about the products. Um, they will help you be successful.
Speaker 2 00:15:32 100%. And I mean, and if you become a good one, that’s where you can negotiate better deals too, on ones where like, I mean you have to become a top affiliate for any certain brand that, that you’re interested into. Well I think this was a good one. I, you know what, I wanna give a preview of another one I think I wanna talk about that we, we kind of dove into a little bit here, which is personal brand architecture, which I think is a thing. Like I haven’t heard people use this term lot, but like, it’s so many people, I have the same problem you just went into of like tangled up of like, oh gosh, is it my personal site or is it this one and how do I do it? And like there, personal brand architecture I believe is a thing.
Speaker 3 00:16:06 I, I think I need a Figma board.
Speaker 2 00:16:09 , , you know, I love this . I do .
Speaker 3 00:16:14 I think that’s our next topic for sure. I appreciate it.
Speaker 2 00:16:17 Alright, thanks Michelle. Thanks for all your insights. Great.
Speaker 3 00:16:20 Yeah, I love it. And
Speaker 2 00:16:22 Uh, and again, if anybody has any um, tips or things I’d like to talk about on future episodes, let us know. We’re also looking for guests for some episodes throughout the fall and winter. So drop Michelle or I align on Twitter or any of the other spots that you find us on Slack, et cetera. And we’ll see y’all next time. Thanks.
Speaker 3 00:16:39 Bye.
Speaker 1 00:16:41 This has been Michelle Frechette and Hazel Quimpo with Audacity Marketing. Dare to Be Different and Dominate Your Market with Audacity.