Reward Your Customers with an Affiliate Program that Rocks!

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Looking for a fun way to market your products and increase profits? Then you’re going to enjoy this guest post about affiliate marketing by Meagan Visser! Read on …

In the world of creative business comes marketing, and marketing includes Twitter and Facebook.

Now with social media sites like these, one of the primary goals is to establish relationships with customers and colleagues. One of the ways you can do that is by promoting others, right?

Whether you’re a customer posting on Facebook about the great experience you just had with a particular business, or you’re tweeting about a colleague’s new service, you’re promoting, engaging, and building relationships. That’s marketing at its core.

Another form of marketing that fits right into this promoting and relationship-building idea is that of affiliate marketing.

Affiliate marketing allows you to set up a program that rewards your customers with money or other types of discounts when they make you sales.It’s a great tactic to use for your business, and it will get your customers’ attention and get them excited about working with you.

Today, I’m going to take you step-by-step through setting up two different types of affiliate programs for your business — one free and one not. Both are great, but have different pros and cons. It’s for you to decide which is right for your business!

Free Affiliate Program

This is a great avenue for those of you on a tight budget, but it takes some organization and a bit more work on your part. Still worth the effort, though!

  1. Decide what reward you’re going to give your affiliates when they bring potential customers to your site. {$5 credit for every $25 purchase, 20% commission of total sale, etc.}
  2. Decide what incentive you’re going to give to new customers who use affiliate codes with their purchases. {Free shipping with this affiliate code, 5% off their total purchase with affiliate code, etc.}
  3. Promote your program and set up a way for customers to sign up as affiliates. {A Google Docs form is great for this!}
  4. Assign each affiliate a special code that’s specific to them and let them know how to use the code when they’re promoting your products or business.
  5. Sit back and let your affiliates work for you! You both make money and benefit.

Here’s an example of how this type of affiliate program would work:

You’re offering your affiliates 20% on any sales they bring to you. You have a loyal customer that loves your products and wants to become an affiliate after seeing your new program. Your customer signs up via your form, you email her with her special code, and you give her some examples of how she can use the code to promote your biz and make some money herself.

Later on, she sees you’ve listed a new product in your shop so she goes to Twitter and sends a tweet about your new product. She promotes “free shipping on orders over $25 with coupon code allierocks.” You get 10 orders that day that use that particular coupon code, so you make money and your customer made 20% of each¬†order for bringing you new customers! Win-win, eh?

Paid Affiliate Program

This is the type of affiliate program I use. It’s a great way to go and is one of the cheapest affiliate options out there. It’s through e-junkie.com and you pay based on how many products you have. You can either set up different programs for each product or you can create one program for all of your products. It’s totally up to you.

First up – one program for all your products

  1. Go to e-junkie.com and sign up for a free 1-week trial.
  2. Go to seller admin -> click “edit affiliate program settings”
  3. Here’s where you can set the percentage of each sale your affiliates earn on all your products. Enter your percentage, your shop or website address, grab your affiliate sign-up link, and click “submit.”
  4. Promote your affiliate program and send your sign-up link to those interested in becoming affiliates.

Next up – different programs for each product

This is great if you offer different types of products such as physical products and digital products. Most affiliate programs offer their affiliates a higher percentage for sales on digital products, but it’s totally up to you.

  1. Go to e-junkie.com and sign up for a free 1-week trial.
  2. Go to seller admin -> click “add product”
  3. Fill out your products information and click “submit.”
  4. Upload your digital file if you have one
  5. Go back to seller admin -> this time click “setup product specific affiliate programs”
  6. Select your product from the drop down menu -> click “edit affiliate settings”
  7. Set your affiliate’s reward percentage and link to the individual product -> click “submit”
  8. Promote your affiliate program and send your sign-up link to those interested in becoming affiliates.

Affiliates have their own affiliate page where they can select what product they want to promote, get their code, and use it in their promotions. The codes can be used openly or they can be hidden in text or images.

It’s pretty straight forward, and e-junkie has a section all about helping you figure out your affiliate program if you need it. It keeps up with your affiliates sales, and you only have to remember to log-in once a month and pay your affiliates what they’ve earned. All sales and payments are through PayPal as well.

I am not an e-junkie affiliate BTW…it’s just a simple and cheap way to help market your business. So if you are looking for another way to get your business out there in front of more people, let your customers help you out and reward them nicely for bringing you new leads that will hopefully convert. Like I said before, it’s a win-win for both of you.

Does this sound appealing to you? Let me know your thoughts in the comments below!

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Meagan-VisserMeagan Visser is a wife, mother, and creative entrepreneur living in the Southern Appalachian Mountains of East Tennessee. Visit her Etsy shop, Growing Up Herbal.

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