Content Driven Marketing – A Beginners Guide To Affiliate Marketing
There is no better business online for a one man operation than Affiliate Marketing. If done correctly, with content driven marketing, the chances of success and a full time income are excellent. If you are looking into an affiliate marketing business and aren’t sure where to start, keep reading, I will cover this in detail below.
Why Content Driven Marketing?
Content driven marketing is the most effective way to get your products and services out in front of customers and get them in the mood to buy. It’s the gentle, more subtle method to promote and provides value to end users. The old school methods of intrusive, in your face advertising, such as banners, popups and sales pitches become less and less cost effective as time passes. Why?
More and more users online are employing ad blockers for one thing. Also, there is the phenomenon known as ad blindness, people simply don’t see banners because they mentally tune them out. Everyone is bombarded with information all day long and they filter, or tune out, what they have discovered over time, is useless to them.
Content Driven Affiliate Marketing – The Brave New World
Why do people go to search engines? Very few people go to Google, Bing, or Yahoo with the intention of buying something, they go there to find information. The major search engines know this and are making great strides to ensure their customers find what they are looking for, quality information.
With the approach of informing, engaging and providing value to end users you gain trust. With trust, comes a much higher chance people will buy based on your recommendations. This is how content driven marketing works and it is very effective if employed correctly.
Providing quality information means higher ranking in search engines. Where there is traffic, there is the potential for sales. Provide that traffic good content and it creates trust. So the overall formula of content driven marketing is quality, informative information that builds trust, mixed with strategically placed affiliate links, equates to sales.
The Present And Future
Almost all major brand names you are familiar with utilize some form of content marketing. These giants learned long ago that useful, informative content designed to educate users and provide value, attracts buyers. They also learned that this type of marketing is much less expensive to produce and maintain.
With reduced costs and better results, it was natural that content marketing became the norm with the big names. This method is also becoming much more common among one man operations, such as affiliate marketers.
Content driven marketing is the future. With good content, you can be assured high rank in the major search engines and steady, reliable, targeted traffic. You, as an affiliate marketer, can utilize the tricks of the heavies very easily. You can also benefit from it just like they do if you know how.
Content Marketing For the Affiliate
The most common way the little guy gets into content marketing is with a blog type website. These are easier to set up than ever before with CMS’s (Content Management Systems) like WordPress. All the heavy lifting like appearance, organization and even SEO is taken care of by the CMS software.
You don’t need a lot of technical knowledge or even coding skills to utilize a CMS. Learning to use one is fairly simple like learning to use Windows or OSX. Most of the details are hidden, you get to concentrate on content creation and marketing and less on the technical details.
So, how do you get started if you have no experience?
Steps To Content Marketing For Affiliates
Here are the basic steps to get started. Later in this article, I will show you how to solve the issues often run into by beginners like web hosting expense, learning the skills, niche selection and the sheer overwhelming feelings of getting started. For now, just the steps themselves will be laid out, I’ll cover the solutions shortly.
Step 1 – Niche Selection
You need to select a niche to focus on. By this I mean you need to find a market that isn’t
too broad. Anything you can think of that interests you will do, but if it’s too broad, it will be much more difficult to target efficiently. There are affiliate programs for absolutely everything you can imagine so don’t worry if your niche seem esoteric.
Pick something you are passionate about. This makes content creation fun instead of a dreaded
chore and reduces the chance of burn out. Even if you aren’t an expert on your subject today, you will be in the near future. So, go with something you love and will remain interested in so your desire to put in the work stays with you.
Step 2 – Website Hosting
Website hosting is vital and where to get it is often a perplexing issue to the beginner. There are so many choices of hosting companies and plans to select from.
This is often one of your biggest expenses as a marketer so it’s an important one to be wise about.
For a site suited to your purposes, often with WordPress preinstalled, it is common for the pricing to be around $100 to $150 a month.
Don’t get discouraged yet, there is a solution I will offer at the end of this article that will greatly reduce this expense and make it much more practical for anyone on a budget.
Step 3 – Learning To Use WordPress
Once you have a niche and website, you need to learn the ins and outs of WordPress. There are many online resources available to help you learn this CMS for free. WordPress itself has its own site with lots of reference materials for this purpose. Using the CMS isn’t that hard, but it can seem daunting if you are new to the concept.
There are thousands of themes and plug-ins you can utilize free of charge to enhance and customize the look and function of your site. Try to plan what you want to do in advance, then select a theme that is fairly simple and suited to your purposes. You can change the theme later, but this sometimes creates problems, so try to pick a simple one that has a clean look and suits a blog style site.
Step 4 – Creating Good Content
Many believe you have to have awesome writing skills to do this sort of thing but that isn’t true. Your content should be in a conversational style anyhow.
Just create articles much like you would if you were writing a private document for a friend. People prefer to read content written this way because it’s easier to digest and understand.
Your content should be created with your target keywords in mind. Select keywords that aren’t super high competition, with enough content, you will attract a lot of traffic with time. Your writing should contain good spelling and grammar, these factors will affect how your content is ranked, so take care to check this before you publish. WordPress helps with this as well, be sure to utilize at least spell check.
Step 5 – Get Indexed
Once you have created content, you need to get it indexed in the big three search engines. WordPress has a facility for this which is automatically triggered whenever you publish something new. However, you should also setup both Google and Bing Webmaster tools, create a sitemap and submit it to both. Once this is done, the search engines will have an easier time crawling your site.
Step 6 – Social Media
Social media goes a long way with your rankings in both Google and Bing. If your content gets mentioned in the major social media spots, the search engines will rank you higher in the end. Use them wisely because this can be overdone and have the opposite effect on your rankings.
So, I laid out the basic steps, but didn’t really offer any solutions to a lot of issues that are probably running through your head right now. There is a lot to getting set up and running an affiliate business based on content driven marketing. I get it, I was where you are at one time so I can relate.
I got started by getting the right education, tools, hosting and support all in one place. There is a website called Wealthy Affiliate that teaches this very subject from top to bottom and is designed for beginners.
The absolute best part, you can try it for free, then decide later if you want to subscribe. You don’t have to provide a credit card number to try the program, just your name and email address. Give it a try!
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