As an affiliate, you are very familiar with the ups and downs of a commission-based business. Because of that, it is absolutely imperative that you diversify and stabilize your business to achieve long term success.
In this post I will explain the importance of diversity and stability, and then give you a quick example of how you could go about achieving and maintaining a successful online business.
The Importance of Diversity and Stability
How many times have you had one campaign running on one traffic source, and it is profitable? Now, how many times has this been your only campaign? Now, how many times has that campaign died for some reason, and you had nothing profitable running? Creating a diverse portfolio of income sources will allow you to never experience this again.
Ways to Diversify
With the sheer volume of possibilities, you could very easily spend 12 hours per day, every single day building your business and never duplicate something other than the steps to build a campaign/site. Anyways, take a look at some of the different ways to diversify your business.
1. Traffic Sources
There are so many traffic sources you could use, but some of the most common are:
- Plenty of Fish
- ad.ly (Twitter)
- Private Media Buys
That list really just touches the tip of the traffic source iceberg. I can guarantee that you do not have campaigns running on every single traffic source. It is very hard to have profitable campaigns running on every single traffic source, but it is definitely possible.
When you think about a network you are probably thinking about something like COPEAC or AzoogleAds. Think outside the box a little bit and find a completely different side of affiliate marketing.
- Commission Junction
There are enough offers on those three networks alone to build campaigns for a year or more. Commission Junction features many branded advertisers and offers commission on products you sell. Clickbank is the largest digital product re-seller, so if you are about ebooks, definitely start using Clickbank.
This is a very easy spot to diversify. When you think affiliate marketing you think weight loss, dating, and mobile, right? Think outside the box! There are a few ways you could go as far as ‘niches’ go to diversify.
First, try different niches. Going green is definitely a hot topic, and there are a lot of informational products about it on Clickbank. Or, head to Commission Junction and find car part advertisers. Build a website about cars and place ads on your site.
The other way to differentiate yourself, is to drill-down further in a specific niche. Take dating for instance. What are some specific dating niches or problems people dating may run into? Most dating affiliates simply market to 18-50 white males and wonder why they cannot drive a profit. Try some of these dating niches:
Right there, I just gave you 7 distinct campaign variations. It’s a matter of taking action and building them yourself. You do not need any special skills to build a profitable business. You do need to work very hard but that is something you are very able to do. Big things happen when you work hard.
4. Traffic Generation Methods
Similar to the first point, how are you driving traffic to your offers or sites? You are probably familiar with social and PPC advertising, so I won’t list them below. Try something new and it might pay off nicely.
SEO – Are all of your campaigns PPC or Facebook right now? Try building an SEO site around a topic you truly enjoy and can write about. It will be very easy to create content for it, and it will grow itself. Eventually, you will be making some decent money from this site (or group of sites) and there is very little money to invest when using SEO as a traffic generation method (if you are not outsourcing).
Email Marketing – Email marketing is a great traffic generation method. The main reason is that you create a list of customers (or potential customers) that have proven they are interested in your product/service by joining your list. You then have the ability to sell them over and over again.
PPV – PPV traffic can be very inexpensive, so it can be extremely profitable. It’s a matter of finding a campaign that works well with how you build the campaign that is difficult. However, we are working to diversify here, so that’s fine!
There are 3 new traffic generation methods you could try. You could combine email marketing with any traffic generation method, actually. A tactic I know works well is building an SEO site about a specific topic, and building an opt-in email list on the site itself. Extremely targeted visitors are always very profitable.
How I Diversify
Generally speaking, I work with a network I am familiar with and a traffic source I like.
Step 1: Let’s say I’m using EWA Network and Facebook to start on a dating campaign. I build out the campaign on Facebook and work to get it profitable. Once I understand the niche and target audience, it’s much easier to pull a profit. Anyways, I’m not profiting on one offer on one traffic source from one network. I would recommend split-testing the offer across various networks to check for the most profitable offer. Just because you can get an extra $1 payout from a network does not mean it will be more profitable.
Step 2: Let’s grow this. I’m not satisfied with $xxx/day profit, I don’t know about you. You can either grow it slowly, or fast as hell, depending on your budget and how much you can afford to lose. Let’s build it out slowly. Pick another traffic source or niche. We know the campaign is profitable right now on Facebook (to whatever demographic) so duplicate the entire campaign to other sources like Plenty of Fish and PPV. Hopefully, it will pull a profit there as well. If not, it’s time to change some things up and do more testing. Not a big deal, we are working on building two more profitable campaigns.
Step 3: Continue growing. Now we have a dating campaign pulling profit from Facebook, POF, and PPV traffic. Depending on how you are feeling, either continue growing this campaign to different traffic sources (PPC, media buy, etc) or pick a new campaign to build out. Once you have some diversity, I recommend working on stability. I view stability as the safety net if your diversification methods fail. With a stable base, building is very easy.
Is this hard work? Yes it is. Will it pay off? Yes it will. People that think building a business of any kind is easy, are so wrong. Just because you can work at home does not mean it’s easy work. Unfortunately, if you have the mindset that building an affiliate business will be easy, you will probably fail. However, if you truly understand the amount of work that goes into building an extremely profitable, sustainable business, you will thrive.
“Where you start is not as important as where you finish” – Zig Ziglar