Everyone thinks affiliate marketing began with Amazon while I would disagree with that, I would also like to make it known that, affiliate marketing began in 1989 with a man named William J. Tobin, who holds the proud title of the world’s first internet marketer. The founder of PC Flowers & Gifts, Tobin came up with the idea of affiliate marketing and launched his program on the Prodigy Network. This model involved paying the Prodigy network a commission on every sale. By 1993, it was generating more than $6 million dollars yearly for Prodigy. This success encouraged Tobin to patent the idea in 1996, although this wasn’t issued until 2000.
Ebay, Amazon and other programs arrived in 1996 with their associates program, they were the first to attract global interest. Their model involved paying a commission as a percentage of the sold product, and this became the model for many affiliate networks that followed.
In the same year, Johnson and Samuel Gerace established BeFree, and Linkshare (now Rakuten Affiliate Network) was founded by Stephen and Heidi Messer.
These were followed in 1998 by Commission Junction(Popularly Known as CJ Offers), set up by some students from the University of California Santa Barbara and now the world’s biggest affiliate marketing provider, and the Clickbank Network, founded by Tim and Eileen Barber.
These networks, which offered payment solutions and facilitated exchanges between affiliates and merchants, enabled smaller retailers outside of Amazon to get involved with affiliate marketing too.
Let’s just say Amazon was the revolutie (revolution) of affiliate marketing, eBay also they are best deacribed as the affiliate marketing revolutie.
What does affiliate marketing actually mean: Affiliate marketing simply means creating a product and spreading it to the right audience through performance based marketing, and forms of performance based marketing includes CPA(cost per action), CPS(Cost per Sale), CPM(cost per mile), CPI(cost per install), and so on.
An affiliate network is a medium through which advertisers (would be explained later on), meet with publishers (would also be explained), to reach an agreement on how advertiser’s product would be getting to the right audience.
An advertiser is an individual or a company with a product, and needs people to help get it to the right audience while a publisher is the one who gets the product or service to the audience based on their agreement, A network serves as a middleman connecting the advertisers and publishers together.
Types of agreement or performance based marketing systems:
CPI or PPI(cost per install or pay per install): This is an agreement between the advertiser and the publisher which states that whenever an install is made on certain kinds of devices a certain amount of commission is paid to the publisher by the advertiser through the affiliate network.
CPA(Cost per action): ): This is an agreement between the advertiser and the publisher which states that whenever an action is taken, a form is filled, an email is submitted, personal info or more a certain amount of commission is paid to the publisher by the advertiser through the affiliate network.
CPS(Cost per sale): This is the most common type of agreement that exists between advertisers and publishers in an affiliate network, this simply means the publisher doesn’t get paid unless a sale is made, most people see this aspect of affiliate marketing as the hardest and is usually avoided by most people.
CPM (Cost per Mile):Advertisers will most times measure the cost per mile by dividing the cost of the advertisement by the number of views (typically 1000) that it generates. For example, if the cost of the CPM campaign is $200, and the number of ad impressions is 1000, the CPM is $200.
Definitely in this kind of agreement the publisher gets paid when his generated impressions meets with that of the advertiser.
PPC (Pay Per Call):In this kind of agreement the advertiser pays the publisher for every call sent to him this is super easy for most publishers but hard to get into as pay per call networks are not easy to find even through Google, a lot of people cash out on thousands of Dollars on this alone cause it’s super lucrative.
Affiliate Networks brief explanation, examples, tools, and also advertising for publishers:
Like I said recently a network serves as a middleman connecting advertisers and publishers together, at times they also run ads for their publishers, to reduce their expenses and maximize their revenue a few affiliate networks that do all these would be listed soon, let’s get started.
Advertising: advertising is a marketing effort that helps product owners reach their audience through various media and organised tactics.
Terms used in advertising especially in the area of social media marketing, search ads and more.
Before we proceed the aim of teaching advertising is to help most publishers understand the process of getting their advertisers products to the right audience, now that it’s understood let’s proceed.
PPC Or CPC (Pay Per Click / Cost Per Click): This simply means a certain amount is charged on every click made and at times if there are no clicks it is charged on every 1,000 impressions.
Impressions: An impression refers to the number of times a digital media appears on the screen of a device, they are not action defined, it just simply means a user seeing an ad or a digital media.
CTR (Click Through Rate): This simply means the number of people who took action after seeing your ad and it can be calculated like this (Total Clicks on Ad) / (Total Impressions) = Click Through Rate.
Reach: This is the refers to the amount of interests and demography that were exposed to your ad.
Targeting: This simply means directing your ad towards certain traits, demography, people, behaviour, country and so on.
Audience: An audience is the intended readership or interactor of an ad.
With all that said let’s move on to examples of Affiliate networks.
Max Bounty: This is one of the best affiliate networks but it’s not recommended for beginners as they focus majorly on expert publishers or marketers.
CPALEAD: This is my most recommended affiliate network for most beginners, as you get in immediately you apply and you start promoting products.
AdworkMedia: This is also another beginner friendly affiliate network and it consist of most CPA and CPI offers.
CPATREND: Another great CPA network for those peoples who are complete newbies or beginners which is called CPA Trend. CPA Trend is one of the best networks for beginners to join and make money from the start. For this network you don’t need approval, all you have to do is join the network and start earning.
Piggyvest: This is also a form of affiliate program more like a CPA that pays you a thousand naira or based on your country’s currency there is an amount paid for every referral.
Rise: This company aims at helping Nigerians invest in Dollars thereby protecting their assets from devaluation but they also reward your marketing effort it’s just like a CPS(Cost Per Sale) you get $5 back when you invest with a minimum of $10 and also invite your friend to do the same and you also get $5 on all their signups, it’s CPA and CPS combined together.
Commission Junction: As for me it’s the coolest affiliate network I’ve ever came across with lots and lots of profitable offers across all niches.
I would have really loved to talk about Click bank but since it’s not supported in Nigeria Let’s move on.
Affiliate network or marketing tools: These are tools or software needed for each stage of reaching potential audience or software needed for effective marketing.
- Link Shortner: Most links generated by most affiliate networks are too long and look spammy and this can make the target audience receptive from clicking it, link shortners help to shorten the links and also perform some analytical functions examples are: Bit.ly, adf.fly, bl.ink, rebrand.ly.
- Elementor: This is used to design websites or landing page it is the most commonly used because of the cool design libraries it comes with.
- Web Hosting: This powers the website an all necessary plugins and software needed for proper functioning.
- SEO keyword tools: These are tools used to get the best keywords aimed at the best audience for a particular niche.
- CMS (Content Management System): This is a software that is actually installed from the hosting provider this holds all the plugins and necessary website support and other functions.
Examples are: WordPress, Joomla, Drupal, PHPBB and so on.
Niches in affiliate marketing:
- Health & Wellness
Developing the right mindset and getting started with affiliate marketing:
- Be ready to learn from others.
- Take baby steps.
- Don’t be scared of getting it or doing things wrongly.
- Make a plan.
- Know what you want
- Be consistent.
- Learn about the product and also the niche you’re promoting.
- Be active.
I hope we all enjoyed this series on affiliate marketing, at Youngprenuers we want to help you develop yourself in all areas especially in trying times like these all we’ve thought you guys here is more than enough for you to get something started, if you feel it’s not enough get more courses and start implementing all that has been thought for those that have questions or comment drop them in the comment box as we would be glad to answer them all.