If you are serious about running an affiliate marketing campaign, it is a great idea to build them a dedicated centre for your affiliates, here are a few tools that we think you should consider adding your resource. Don’t forget you can also add in product news and articles and general advice for promoting your products.
Yes you heard, Banners! You may think they are dead, lots of people do to but there are still some great performing banners out there.
You need to offer a range of different banner sizes. Remember, every site will use different sized banners to run advertisements so you need to provide choice.
To get an idea of what banners you should look at building then the best place to look is the IAB (Internet Advertising Bureau) who have a useful guide of “Official” Sizes.
Most sites will be able to use one of multiple of these sizes. I would suggest using a minimum of 6 different sizes and for the right affiliate be prepared to build bespoke banners of a different size.
Also look to refresh banners of offer new creative on a regular basis. Maybe use the Promotional Calendar to give you ideas of new themed creative – Valentine’s Day, Christmas, you know the drill.
The second important thing to include is Text links. But don’t just give affiliates a link that says:
Yes, standard text links are good and should be given but try to incorporate them within a paragraph of text, you know advertorials…. This gives the link context and allows the affiliate to use sprinkled across the site.
For the text section of the site you will also need to offer Classified Ad text (Yes, there are guys out there still earning good money), Product reviews (Get these written for you if need be), Ezine Ads and Solo Ads. There are lots of different methods here to produce lots of text.
I would recommend
- three or four Advertorial type text links (up to 25 words of text)
- three Classified Ad texts ( 20 words, 30 words and 50 words)
- Product Reviews (One per Product or on a selection of products)
- three Ezine Ads ( 20 words, 30 words and 50 words)
- one Solo Ad
So as you can see, providing your affiliates with this amount of sales material will set you apart from others in your space and in fact most affiliate programmes.
If you really want to kick some butt, you could try some of these ideas:
Offline Marketing Materials
Produce Flyers, Posters, Postcards and Door Drops using VistaPrint and including your affiliates ID. Give Affiliates access to the Templates. Failing that, you can allow users to fill in fields in Adobe Acrobat files thus creating customised posters or postcards.
Give you affiliates code for popups, popunders, squeeze pages, opt-in forms. Some of the tools available to buy cost $80. Give this technology to your affiliates for free and they will love you for it!
Can you offer your affiliates free samples with their affiliate ID’s in them? Sample chapters of your e-book product or a free report. If you have a PDF product you can easily do this is VIRALPDF.
Even if you don’t you can create a PDF report on your service or industry and allow your affiliates to add there links and then give it away.
Why not offer the ability for affiliates to download and offer an audio interview in exchange for an email address so affiliates can start building an opt-in mailing list.
The same can be used for Video Downloads. Maybe you can run a video on how to do a particular thing with your product or something quirky and viral.
Do you have an email course for new signups? What about a beginners guide to …..? If so, turn it into a 5 or 7 days course, offer it to affiliates in a text format so they can upload it to their autoresponder service and give it away to their site visitors.
Provide a whole range of graphics and copy with this service so affiliates can promote it in its own right!
If they don’t have an autoresponder service, recommend to them the one that you use (Just make sure you do use it!) You can offer it to them directly or via your own affiliate link.
Other Content Options
Why not try using testimonials, articles, independently written reviews? If you think about it, there can be a huge amount of content you can let your affiliates have to promote your products.
Pay Per Click Advertising
If you are happy for affiliates to run Pay-Per-Click campaigns, give them Keyword lists you know best fit your product. And even for some Super Affiliates you may want to build a separate landing page or even give them separate landing pages on different URLs so they can compete with each other.
Link Exchange Networks
If you trade links yourself for your site why not give away a monthly spreadsheet to your affiliates with all the text link exchanges you carried out. This advice could help boost their Search Engine rankings.
There are lots of things to do to build an affiliate marketing centre. It is worth spending the time to build it properly and keep it up to date. Constantly refresh creative. Having a great affiliate tool area will drive more sales to you and in the long run build your affiliate numbers.
In closing, I would paraphrase Jerry MacGuire “Help them to help you!” Give them as much creative and guidance as they can handle and then some more….
Build it as a seperate website
It may be advantageous to run your affiliate marketing centre on a separate URL. This means you can promote the affiliate programme in its own right.