When it comes to affiliate marketing, one might think of different marketing channels such as blogs, YouTube, social media, etc. However, If that’s all you can think of, then you’re missing out on a gold mine – email marketing.
Although email marketing is considered to be an outdated marketing strategy that was popular only a few years ago, actually it is still ranked as the most effective marketing channel.
So why not putting affiliate marketing together with email marketing to get a powerful solution? This is exactly what is called affiliate email marketing – a top notch marketing strategy to build passive income.
Are you ready to make make money with affiliate email marketing? Let’s get started!
What is Affiliate Email Marketing?
If you have known the business model of affiliate marketing, then it is not difficult for you to understand affiliate email marketing.
Affiliate email marketing refers to utilizing your email lists to promote a product or service in the form of affiliate links. In this case, you can earn a commission for every resulting conversion (e.g. making a purchase, completing a form, or signing up) your referrals make.
Here is an example of an affiliate email marketing template:
Why Choose Email for Affiliate Marketing?
While it looks like email marketing is long past its prime, the truth is, email marketing remains the king of marketing channels, trumping social media, SEO, etc.
Compared to many other marketing channels, affiliate email marketing has proven to perform better for the following reasons.
Affiliate email marketing has a larger reach
It could be argued that email is the currency of the Internet, as almost everyone has an active email account. The number of email users far exceeds even the number of Facebook users and Twitter users combined.
Affiliate email marketing boasts higher CTR
For every affiliate marketers who focus on driving conversions, email is undoubtedly the best tool with a conversion rate of 4.24%, outpacing search engines (0.49%) and social media (0.59%), based on a survey by Monetate, an e-commerce software firm.
Affiliate email marketing is more acceptable for users
According to MarketingSherpa, email emerges as the most preferred way for prospects to receive updates and promotions (60%), far outpacing social media by 40 percentage points.
That’s why email matters to affiliate marketers. Of course, be sure not to overlook other channels such as social media affiliate marketing, as they are also relevant and important.
Next, let’s go deep into the key to email marketing – email lists.
How to Build Your Email List for Affiliate Email Marketing?
Email lists are to affiliate email marketing what fans are to social media. Only by building an active email list can you start to nurture a close relationship with your audience.
If you have never done email marketing, the first thing you should do is to create an email list. Here are some tactics to help you get started.
Step 1: Choose an email service provider (ESP)
Before everything else, I would like to suggest you to find an email service provider if you have made up your mind to start email marketing. The most important reason is that they could offer list management for you which could automate your workflow and save your time.
On top of that, you can benefit from the customizable templates, campaign automation, tracking and reporting services offered by ESP.
Here is a list of Top 12 Best Email Marketing Services:
Reminder: Ensure the email provider allows affiliate links before making a decision, and follow their guideline about how to using affiliate links.
Step 2: Offer a lead magnet
Asking people directly for their email address is a bit off-putting, and you may not get any results.
Just imagine, under what circumstances would people be willing to give you their email address? Offering an enticing incentive is the easiest and fastest way to gather a pool of email addresses.
There is more than one kind of incentive you can offer to attract people to share their email addresses, such as:
When offering incentives, you can use some engaging forms. For example, you can use opt-in forms or pop-ups on your website, or you can add a signup button to your social media profile.
Step 3: Keep delivering valuable content
Once collecting the email addresses, you should kick off your follow-up emails and ensure consistency.
The initial follow-up email should be well-crafted to tell people what they can expect to receive, how often they would hear from you, and any other information.
For example, here’s a basic welcome email from Medium to a new subscriber. It clearly explains what you will get from Medium.
After then, what you need to do is live up to your subscribers’ expectations by delivering compelling and engaging letters consistently.
Tips to Launch a Successful Affiliate Email Marketing Campaign
Now you have built your email list and kept creating attractive content, you can start to launch your affiliate email marketing campaign.
If it can help you to foster trust, increase brand visibility and boost sales, then it can count as a successful affiliate email marketing campaign.
Here are some tips to make things go smoothly.
Tip 1: Don’t hard sell
Whatever affiliate marketing channel you choose, the golden rule you must keep in mind is:
You’re sharing, not selling.
That means you need to create excellent content, offer useful information and build trust rather than spam to your email list.
Being overly promotional will annoy your audience and cause them to unsubscribe. You should come across as a friend recommending something good, not a product rep eager to sell.
Don’t make your affiliate marketing letters over salesy and don’t insert your affiliate links everywhere. A good rule of thumb is to make 80% of your emails useful content and 20% product pitches.
Tip 2: Segment your email list
We all know that audience segmentation is crucial for any marketing. The same rules apply to affiliate marketing.
Before starting your affiliate marketing follow-up series, you have to split your email list into different segments based on their location, industry, interests or behaviors, so that you can send the right letters to the right people at the right time.
To do this, you can let your audience submit the info in the opt-in form when you offer lead magnets, or you can use the segmentation function of email service provider.
By segmenting your subscribers, you can yield higher click-through rates, more conversions as well as fewer unsubscribes.
Tip 3: Add affiliate links properly
There are two ways to add affiliate links.
This first way is to sprinkle them into your existing email. If you already have an email sequence that is proven to get high open and click-through rate, then you don’t need to write brand new emails for affiliate marketing. Just subtly embed the affiliate links into your current email.
Another way is to add them to your current email sequence. While the first way may make your affiliate links less visible, the second way is more impressive. It is noteworthy that you should make the sequence more focus on educational content rather than selling offers, just as tip 1 we highlighted above. For example, your email sequence could be:
Earning affiliate income from email marketing is not as hard as it sounds if you follow the above tips.
To better convert the prospects into buyers, just remember, staying sincere is the key. Choose the products you truly recommend, promote them to people who really need them, and the rest will follow.
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