AMY PORTERFIELD: Well hey there, Amy Porterfield here. Welcome to another episode of The Online Marketing Made Easy Podcast. I know I say this every single week, but thank you so much for being here. I know that you have hundreds of different options for really great business podcast episodes to listen to. The fact that you’re tuning in today means the world to me so thanks for being here.
Today’s topic is all about how to be a successful affiliate marketer. Just to make sure we’re on the same page, when I say affiliate marketing, I’m talking about you promoting somebody else’s program, product, or service. When you do so, you make a commission.
My guest today is Rachel Luna. Actually, she was on the show not to long ago talking about affiliate marketing. Why the heck would I have her back? Here’s why. A few weeks ago Rachel was in town and she came over to my house.
We went for a walk and then we sat on the couch, of course Gus had to be right between us. She’s allergic to dogs but Gus loves everybody who doesn’t want him to be right there on their lap so we sat on the couch with Gus and talked forever and ever.
She brought up that she has had amazing success lately with teaching other people how to do affiliate marketing. She was telling me about all of these really cool case studies. I had already known that Rachel had done really well for herself by promoting other people’s programs. But I didn’t know she also had really cool case studies.
Let’s be honest, when we start to teach the stuff we know how to do and other people get amazing results it lights us up. She was really excited to share these stories with me. And then she said she has also created a program all around affiliate marketing.
I said, “Whoa, wait. I didn’t know you were doing that!” So she started telling me about the program at the time it wasn’t yet totally finished. Then she said something that kind of sparked my interest and it is why I wanted to have her back on the show.
She said, “One thing I love about affiliate marketing is that it gives you extreme confidence when you then are ready to launch your own stuff. It’s a really great testing ground for getting the lay of the land.”
Your confidence soars when you know how to do it and you do it right. Then, when you are ready to promote your own thing you know what to do. You know what you like based on other people’s promos. You know what you want to change for your own promo. It is a really cool way to ease into your own stuff.
I thought about it and thought that is exactly what I did in my early days. I had promoted some other people’s stuff before I had actually done my own. That really did help me as I went into my own promotions.
So, when she told me that I thought it was perfect time. I needed to have Rachel back on the show because I just launched the big program, Courses That Convert (It’s not open at the time of this recording – we have closed the cart).
A lot of people in the course are nervous about launching their own stuff and I thought this might be a good segue for them so that when their program is ready they have already promoted somebody else’s program in the meantime and they are ready to go out with their own launch.
I just love the whole concept so I invited Rachel back on. I keep talking about her like you all know who she is. Some of you will because you might have listened to one of my former episodes (Episode #93) or have been introduced to Rachel in other ways.
Let me tell you who she is just in case you don’t know. Rachel is a best-selling author and confidence coach. She is the ultimate results maker whose no-nonsense approach helps her clients double and triple their income while helping them create more freedom. She talks a lot about freedom and balance and, of course, how to gain more confidence in yourself and your abilities inside your own business.
I told Rachel I wanted to have her back on the show but I wanted to do a different episode than last time. The last time I had her on the show we talked more about her own success while being an affiliate marketer for somebody else’s program and a lot of things she did to have that success.
I wanted her to come back this time to run through the eight steps to successful affiliate marketing. We kind of did that in the last episode but we took a different approach to it this time. Then I wanted her to give the reasons why being an affiliate is a great dry run for your own launch.
We get into specifics. I share some of my own experiences. She shares some of her stories. We make it real for you. Then I asked her about the most common mistakes people make when they first test out the waters with affiliate marketing.
You never want to make these mistakes because the people you’re partnering with will never invite you back to do it again. So just know the mistakes up front so that you never make them.
We’re also going to just briefly talk about this new program she created, Profit Without Products. It’s a fantastic A-Z step-by-step program to get you into the affiliate marketing game. That’s what she does in her program. But that’s not really what this episode is all about.
We’re going to do a mini training. I’m going to teach you along with Rachel so you can walk away thinking you have the lay of the land and knowing what you need to do. Then, if you want to explore her program, by all means do so. You can check it out at http://www.amyporterfield.com/pwp (Profit Without Products).
Let’s go ahead. I won’t make you wait any longer. We’re going to dive right into the mini training. Let’s do it.
Amy: Rachel, welcome back to the show. Thanks so much for being here.
Rachel: Thank you so much for having me. I’m excited to be back.
Amy: Me too because we have a lot to cover. I want to jump into it. We’ve really created this mini training. You and I have gone back and forth about what we wanted to teach inside this episode and we have a lot to cover. I wanted to start with the eight steps to affiliate marketing.
These eight steps are actually something you created based on your own successful experience with affiliate marketing. Is that right?
Rachel: Yes. I really stumbled into affiliate marketing as an accident. As I started doing one promotion after another I realized there was a formula. If I follow the steps, every time and I do it “this way” I get better and better results.
I thought I should put it into a system and sequence. I like systems or sequences.
Amy: You’re my kind of girl. And that’s exactly how I like to teach. Once I do it and figure out why it’s working and how it’s working then I put it into a formula just like you’ve done here. I think it’s really actionable. So let’s go ahead and jump into it.
Rachel: Okay, cool. The first step is to pick your products. You don’t want to just promote anything and everything. I have some really hard and fast rules about that. You want to make sure you’re doing it with authenticity and integrity. It’s choosing the products, products, or services that you have used, have gotten some great results from, and that you really love or know the person and really trust that they would take care of your audience. That’s super, super important.
Amy: Great. I have this in my own experience where my best affiliate marketing promotions have all been with programs that I’ve gone through, have gotten success with, I have my own stories I can tell, and I really make it personal. I think that’s why they have done so well.
In my early days I would promote a bunch of random things because I didn’t really know better and there wasn’t a connection with loving it “because” and “here’s how I’ve used it.” That totally changes the game with affiliate marketing. Would you agree?
Rachel: I would so agree. It’s actually exactly why it’s so much easier to go on to Step 2, which is setting your goals (good, better, best). When you have that intimate experience with the offer then you really know and have a good understanding of how your audience is going to react and you can set some great profit-generating goals based on that.
Step 2 is setting your GBB (good, better, and best). You and I are big fans of Todd Herman and he teaches the good-better-best model. It is setting your financial goals. At the end of the day you are promoting something because you love it and you know your audience can benefit from it but you’re also promoting it because you want to have a nice healthy stream of revenue from it.
I like to tell people to choose something that feels like a slight reach for your good; for your better it’s really exciting and you kind of get butterflies; and for your best you would do cartwheels down the street if that happens. I also like to remind people when they are setting their good-better-best goals make sure they feel somewhat attainable if you really give it your all.
For example, I’m not going to set a best goal of a million dollars in affiliate partnership sales because, let’s face it, that would be…
Amy: Pretty rare.
Rachel: A phenomenon. That would be .00001% of the population that could hit that. I like to dream but keep it on this planet.
Amy: Exactly. So tell us about Step 3.
Rachel: Step 3 is to make key decisions. I like to tell people to make as many decisions as you can up front. This is going to help you have a much smoother experience. The key decisions you want to think about are what kind of support you want to give your audience.
What I mean by that is during the promotion period, are you going to be in a Facebook group with them? Are you going to be giving them live stream content? Are you going to create additional content that will supplement the program organizer of the product?
Whatever content they are offering, are you going to create extra goodies for them? Are you going to offer prizes for people that do their homework as they are watching the launch videos or as they go through the webinar?
These are the key decisions you want to make as well as whether you are going to run Facebook ads. If so, what’s your budget going to be?
Step 3 is really where I am a fan of those huge Post-It notes that you can put on the wall. I say get the marker and get the big old pen and paper and start deciding what you can commit to. Once you’re in the launch you’re in it. If you have promised something you’d better make sure you deliver.
Amy: Awesome. What’s the next step?
Rachel: That brings us to Step 4, which is setting up your back end. Again, my goal is to always have as much as I can set up in advance so that when we’re in launch I can take care of my audience.
You’re going to set up things like Lead Pages, if you’re using them. You and I both love Lead Pages. You’re going to start thinking about Facebook ads and images and copy if you’re going to go that route.
You’re going to start writing your review of the product or program or whatever it is that you’re promoting because once it’s Go time you want that stuff ready. You don’t want to be thinking, “Oh my gosh, I’ve got to create this but these people are asking all of these questions and I still have my own business to run.”
Remember, we’re doing this as a side part of our business. If you’re not prepared it can get frazzled really fast.
Rachel: Once you have your back end set up it comes down to my next part, my favorite part, running your communication plan. I really believe that the communication piece is where you will get the conversions to happen if you are communicating with your audience and really speaking to them with intention and if you are really showing them that you understand where they are.
When I say “run your communication plan,” we are going to do these a couple of different ways. It could be through paid traffic, it could be through a Facebook group that you put them into, and it could be through emails. I love the email sequence aspect of it because in an email you sometimes get a little more time to go deeper in a story.
That’s actually one of the things we cover in Profit Without Products. I go so deep on this. I give you the five emails you need to send to really get your audience resonating and converting. That’s the area where most people want that hand holding.
I don’t know about you, Amy, but for the longest time copywriting and writing emails was a huge source of frustration for me.
Amy: Oh for sure! I love that you say “run the communication plan.” I want to point out that you mentioned emails and maybe a Facebook group created just for the launch and Facebook ads.
You actually do all three of those things during your affiliate launches, right?
Rachel: I absolutely do. It is what gets the best results.
Amy: Great. I love that inside your program you actually break that all down, show how to do it, and give examples. I think that is probably the most valuable thing people need, to show them exactly what you mean and how you’re doing it.
To me, out of all of these eight steps, the communication plan is the most important step. I’m so glad you kind of touched on that and really went a little bit deeper inside your program, especially, because I think that’s where people need the most support.
Rachel: I couldn’t agree more.
Amy: Keep going, what’s Step 6?
Rachel: I would say Step 6 is the twin sister of the communication plan. It is to create results through engagement. If you can get your audience results in the beginning while they are just going through the free stuff, they will be more likely to continue to follow you on that journey all the way to the checkout page.
The way you do this is, again, in the emails asking them questions and telling them to hit the reply button and let you know what they think. A lot of times people are intimidated to hit the reply button and message you back. They think you’re too busy.
You’re not too busy at all, especially during this time; as well as within the Facebook group. One of my favorite things to do within the Facebook group is to start talking to them.
I love to coach people in these Facebook groups to show them where they are missing a step. I think you have also seen this at times, Amy, where they are doing the work but are not doing it full out. They are hitting roadblocks and are really not seeing how they can apply it.
That’s where you and I can jump in and say, “Oh, I can totally see where you can apply this in your business.” You are then showing them how they can get results and they will love you, they will love the program, and love the content. They are going to hit that checkout page.
Amy: Yes, I love it. That’s fantastic. Keep us going.
Rachel: Step 7 is to communicate and convert. This is my little secret step for those of us (and I include myself in this group) who are the small listers. If you have ever had list shame I just want to let you know you’re not alone. I still do not have anywhere near 10,000 people on my list and I always feel that’s the benchmark.
You’ve arrived when you get your 10,000. But I’m not there yet. Guess what folks? My business is not hurting one iota because of this because of communicating and making sure you’re taking the time to answer questions, opening up office hours, getting on the phone with people. It’s gorilla grass-roots marketing it’s going back to basics.
We are so desensitized by all of the social media. People love it when you say “let’s get on the phone” to them. It changes their world and positions you as an authority. Whether or not they buy this promotion, they will buy something from you in the future and now you’re creating a great long-term relationship.
Amy: Awesome. I think that’s so valuable, 100%. The final step?
Rachel: The final step is delivering on your word. I’ve got to be honest and tell you, one of the first promotions that I ever did, I felt like such a scumbag.
Rachel: I didn’t do it the right way. This was my first go around. I didn’t know how to do all of the things I now know and that I am teaching. But I just said, “Hey, join this program. Sign up through my link. If you have any questions I’m here to support you.”
I know two people bought. I do not know who those two people were. I never followed up with them. I never circled back. I never gave them that support. Please forgive me if you’re listening if you are one of those two people.
You want to make sure you deliver on your word. When you promise a bonus, deliver the bonus in the timeline that you said. If you’re going to create that Facebook group and work through the content with them, work through the content with them.
Again, it’s really about creating a relationship where they know, like, and trust you and they believe and know you are going to help them on this journey. So it’s really, really important. I’m such a stickler. I like to over deliver. I really try to do that. If I’ve promised X, Y, and Z I always try to throw in a little extra that they were not expecting just so that everyone is happy.
The other thing is that when you are delivering on your word and staying in constant communication with the people that sign up through you, you get less refunds.
Amy: That is for sure, definitely. These steps are so good. Again, I know you have perfected them over and over again. When I look at the eight steps (I’ll be sure to put them on the show notes at http://www.amyporterfield.com/115) I look at them and think it is exactly what I follow for my big B-School launch success when I’m a partner, when I’m a partner for Lead Pages, and other programs as well. You really dialed it down to exactly what you need to do. I love that.
I really wanted to have you on the show today because we reviewed these eight steps the last time you were on the show but I wanted to get into them one more time because I think people really need to hear them over and over again to understand them.
When you were over at my house and we were sitting on the couch and chatting about this new program you had created, I loved how you said, “Doing affiliate marketing is a great way to ease into your own launches.”
Right when you said that I was like, “Ding, ding, ding! I totally agree.” It’s such a great strategy to build up confidence and more. So, go ahead and run us through these four reasons why being an affiliate is such a great run to your own launches.
Rachel: Absolutely. Let’s talk about Step 1 and Reason 1. It’s because you’re going to learn what kind of support you need when it’s time to launch your own course and you will also have a really good understanding of the kind of time you need, money (if you’re going to make any kind of investments), and the resources for your own launch without actually spending that up front.
What I mean by that, you and I both know that creating a course can sometimes be a daunting process if we’re not members of Courses That Convert (which I love and use). I used it to created Profit Without Products.
When you know exactly what you need in terms of time and resources, it helps to create better, in my opinion. Once I became an affiliate for other programs and started treating their launch as my own launch I started to see that when I am in a launch I really need to be in it.
I’ve got to be fully present. I need a couple of weeks. My family needs to know that I need a couple of weeks. I have two small children and a husband (who is like a third child) so I have to make sure I have a really good grasp and understanding.
He now understands when I say we are at launch time he asks me what the dates are and now we know it’s about typically three weeks where Mommy is working past five o’clock on some nights, especially around that cart closing. You don’t see Mommy; and, Daddy’s got the kids.
This really helps you set your own budget, especially if you’re running Facebook ads. One of the things I like to teach in affiliate marketing, especially on your first run, only run ads to your warm market. That’s going to get you a better conversion rate.
But now you can start to add and expand to the budget. For your own launch you may want to do cold traffic. That means you are going to need a little more money. It gives you a great perspective and understanding.
Amy: I love this. The whole point here is to really learn the kind of support you’ll need for your own launch. What I’ll say about that, when I launch for partners, when I’m an affiliate for somebody else, I definitely block out that time as Rachel has said.
I didn’t used to do this. To be honest, when I first started dabbling with affiliate marketing it was kind of an after thought. I would send out a few emails, do a webinar, and “we are good to go but now I’m going to work on my stuff.”
Now I’m serious about it and I really do believe that is why I’ve seen such amazing results with my campaigns. I’ll get on the calendar and just like you said, I’ll block it out. I will say “I’m in an affiliate launch right now.” That means I’m not working on my own stuff. I’m not trying to promote anything else I’m doing.
My social media posts that are a bit promo-ish are going to be about “this” affiliate promo and not something I’m doing. Like you said, I love you suggestion about Facebook ads, to focus on your warm traffic during affiliate marketing campaigns, because you don’t want to go after a bunch of cold traffic with somebody else’s product, not really knowing how it’s going to convert.
I thought that was a really important strategy as well. But just understanding how to support a launch by being in somebody else’s launch is a great idea. You learn what you like, what you don’t like, what you want to change for your own launch. It’s incredibly educational for your own business.
I just wanted to jump in there. I’m totally with you there.
Rachel: Absolutely. I’m glad you said that about what you like and what you don’t like. That was a big thing for me as well. So let’s go on to Reason 2, you get practice writing super-compelling copy emails.
I just said a couple of minutes ago how writing email copy used to make me pull my hair out. But, when you’re writing it for an affiliate promotion you are generally just telling your story and experience. When you’re writing your story it’s a little easier than when you are trying to craft some amazing sales copy.
You don’t have to overthink it that much. You just have to start sharing your experience, and when it’s time to do your launch, writing all of these emails will be a breeze because you will start thinking about the stories that are going to be relevant to them.
I actually have an example. One of the girls who is doing an affiliate promotion and I have given her some tips said, “Oh my gosh, this is helping me connect with my audience so much. They’re writing me back, telling me my story is resonating with them, I’ve never had this kind of engagement.”
That’s what you really want. So, getting that opportunity to write those emails to get inside their mind and to really understand where they’re coming from and for them to find that connective tissue that they share with you in common.
Amy: This has me thinking about my own journey with copywriting. About two years ago I finally got into the groove with copywriting for an affiliate launch. It took me a while, for sure. I’m a slow learner, 100%.
I remember I was writing for my B-School launch. I felt things just weren’t clicking in the very beginning. One thing you will notice with affiliate marketing, when the affiliate marketer gives you copy it feels like everybody is using the same copy. One of the suggestions you brought up when you and I had the conversation (and I totally agree) is to use that copy as a guide but don’t use it word for word. Would you agree?
Rachel: Yes. Thank you. I had that on the tip of my tongue and couldn’t get it out. I’m glad you jumped over there. This is another thing that’s going to set you apart. Typically, especially if you’re promoting something big like B-School, there are hundreds of affiliate partners.
You don’t want to send out the same old regurgitated stuff. Taking that and using it as a guideline, they sort of give you a little bit of a formula, as long as you can go in there, pull the key highlights and make it your own, that helps you in your own launch.
I will tell you right now, I’ve referred to those old emails whenever I’m going to sit down and write my own copy because I know it works. It’s a great, great, great test run.
Amy: Yeah. For me, when I finally kind of got into the groove of it, it was a moment where I thought everyone was writing the same emails and I didn’t want that. I needed to become extremely vulnerable with my writing in order to stand out through the crowd.
With B-School there are a lot of people promoting it. Marie has fixed it where she’s not actually sending out email copy because she, too, didn’t like that. She kind of sends us bullets now. Anyway, I sat down at 5 a.m. An email had to get out that morning so I was up early. I just wrote from my heart.
This doesn’t work with all affiliate promos. But when it does, get extra vulnerable with your copy. This is your chance, like Rachel said, to tell your own story. You are going to be amazed how it translates with your own audience.
I am talking too much on this one. I’ll let you move on to the next Reason.
Rachel: I do have to say, this is really important for the audience, the moment I started getting really transparent, that’s when I started to see my income really, really shift. I’m glad you said that.
I do want to jump into the third reason why being an affiliate is a great dry run. It’s because you get to learn the struggles of your audience. You’re going to see this when they hit the reply button and respond to your emails. But, if you’re doing that Facebook group, like I suggested, this is where you will really see where they are struggling.
If you’re engaging them like I teach you to they will start responding. If you let people talk they will tell you all their drama, all of the excuses, the things that are stopping them. I have found two things happen, actually three.
One, this allows you to write great compelling email in your affiliate marketing to address those objections; two, this will help you see a gap in the market and if you’ve been thinking you don’t know what kind of course to create for your audience then you’ve got it right there in the Facebook group; three, the copy for the sales page has written itself. You can pull their direct quotes, their exact thoughts and feelings.
With a little bit of finessing you can throw it on the sales page so that when they land there for your launch they will feel you know them. It will be like you are talking to them. They will say, “This is me.”
Amy: Yes. Rachel: It works.
Amy: It is pretty magical. Not to sound dramatic, but it truly is. I’m so glad you brought that up. I know you have one more reason. This is probably my favorite reason. I hinted at it in the intro but Reason 4 is kind of your jam. So talk about that one.
Rachel: It’s your confidence. Your confidence is going to go through the roof. I’m going to use myself in this example. I had never launched my own course. I was just promoting other people’s stuff and started to notice my audience really responded to me. They really trusted me. They really knew me. I thought I could totally do it.
I was also getting emails from people on my list saying, “I love that you’re promoting XYZ but I want to buy something you’ve created.” I have gotten several after that one,
but when I got that first email from my audience saying they wanted to buy something from me, my heart skipped.
I thought, “Oh my gosh, they want something and now I know how to do it and I know how to do it really well because I have been launching for all of these other people.”
I knew exactly what I needed. I knew what kind of Facebook ad budget I needed to run. I knew what kind of ads performed well with my market. I knew how to write copy. I knew how to create engagement. I knew how to get them results.
I had all of this knowledge because I had spent so much time in other people’s launches and doing the heavy lifting there. So when I did my first launch, it was an internal launch (I only sent it to my list) we did over $53,000 in sales…on the first go around.
Amy: Wow! That is awesome. That’s life changing.
Rachel: My whole life changed, Amy!
Amy: I bet.
Rachel: The money was great. But, can I just tell you that being an affiliate is how my husband finally got on board with my business. I don’t know if I ever told you this, but my husband once looked me in the eye and said, “I don’t believe in what you do.”
He broke my heart when he said that. Even to this day, I still feel that pit in my stomach when I recall that moment in time. There was no money coming in. I was a coach. I was charging $15 and hour and he didn’t see the vision.
He even said, “You and Tony Robbins, you’re all just marketers.”
Amy: Oh gosh. Ridiculous. That just kills you.
Rachel: He said we were stealing money from people. But when I became an affiliate and hit the leader board at #8 on the one affiliate launch and we made $15,000 that week I went in his face and said, “Look what I did. I told you this was going to work. I told you I could do this.”
From there he became a believer. When you can bring home results to those naysayers, they shut up real fast.
Amy: That’s so true. I know a lot of people listening today are struggling to get their spouse or partner onboard with them because they’re not bringing in consistent revenue yet. It kind of looks like a hobby versus a business. Sometimes it’s hard for your spouse to see the vision, like you said.
That reminds me of another reason this confidence issue is so very valuable. When you do well with an affiliate marketing program and you get on the leaderboard, I know this first hand because I have been on both sides and have seen other people’s names get on the leader board and it peaked my interest. I wanted to know who that was and it’s pretty cool.
Or, I have been on the top of the leaderboard and other people are like, “Oh my God Amy, this is amazing. Look what you’re doing.”
It puts you on the map. So many of us struggle with getting seen and heard in this sea of noise online. Social media can only do so much. You’re working your tail off to get people to notice you and listen to you and hear your message. But when you get on the leaderboard all of those other affiliates are listening and paying attention.
I just want to back up, for those of you that are brand new to this concept, sometime when you do an affiliate marketing campaign it’s during a live launch. The owner of that program is tracking what affiliates are doing the best. It is usually a top-ten list. Everybody is paying attention to that.
So, if you want to make a name for yourself in the industry and you want to get a little clout behind you, get on those leaderboards. Again, people are paying attention. I’m so glad you brought that up.
Rachel: I just want to throw this out there as well. There are two things. Again, I have a very, very small list but I have been on three top-ten leader boards and for one promotion I was in the top. Actually on two of them I was in the top five. It changes the game completely.
Amy, one of your listeners, Annie Letourneau, did a leaderboard where she was zero in opt ins. She was not on the leaderboard for opt ins and all of the sudden when the cart came open she was the #1 affiliate. I had a little conversation with her last week and she said that since then people in her industry are reaching out to her. It has really positioned her as an authority.
I want to let us little listers out there know that you don’t have to have a big list to get on that leader board. It’s about the engagement. It’s about the communication plan. It’s about really serving people and showing up for them. It will put you on the map and then those partnerships are going to start to form.
Now, thanks to my success on leaderboards, I have made some amazing connections and partnerships. It led me to you, Amy.
Amy: That is so cool. It’s pretty much how we’ve connected from the get go. I love that. I will say one more thing and then we will jump into our next section. But the final thing I’ll say about this is that when you choose what you want to promote, if you choose a really big and popular program like Marie Forleo’s B-School, it’s going to be harder to get through all of the noise and get on the leaderboard.
It is definitely a little bit tougher because she’s been doing it for eight years. There are some big players in the game. But if you choose somebody else who has a really good, awesome program, you have gone through the program ahead of time and know it well, you’ve seen some results, and are supporting them, maybe it’s not such a big campaign they’re doing but you are going to be able to shine through that a little bit easier.
You also want to be really cognizant of who you are choosing and who you’re promoting for many different reasons. One reason is that it would be great if you got some recognition for it. It is not always necessary but it’s always a perk to boost your confidence.
We’re going to go into some common mistakes people make with affiliate marketing, especially when they’re just starting out. I thought if you would outline these three common mistakes then our listeners don’t have to make these mistakes when they go into it. I think it’s really valuable.
But, before we get there, I want you to take a moment and tell people about your brand new program, Profit Without Products. I want you to tell people about it because your program was created based on your own experience with affiliate marketing over the years as well as teaching some of your students how to do it and they got great results.
I love when products are born out of specific experiences you’ve had because you know this stuff inside and out. Now it’s inside of a program. I’m so excited about it. Tell people about your program.
Rachel: Thank you so much, Amy. I’ve got to tell you, I’m so proud of this program. It’s called Profit Without Products. I wanted to create this course because being an affiliate marketer completely changed my life. I don’t even like the term “affiliate marketer” but getting involved with affiliate promotions changed my life. It restored my marriage.
We were really close to divorce and my husband is so on board right now. I just want other people to experience the financial freedom I now have because of it. Our income alone, just from affiliates is ridiculous.
I wanted to create a comprehensive program where you’re getting the complete roadmap, a checklist, and a fill-in the blank playbook. When you have the tools you actually know exactly what step to take and when to take it. You’re getting everything you need in the right sequence.
There is never going to be a moment in the promotion when you think, “Gosh, what should I do next? How do I rev up sales? How do I get them to connect with me?” I’ve put it all in the course.
Another thing I wanted to make sure is that people got the nitty gritty details. You and I both know, Amy, there are always nuances to success story. But this program goes deep and it’s the fine print where you ask yourself, “How did they do that?” I’ve got you covered.
Rachel: You and I spoke about the communication plan. It is key when you’re introducing your audience to a program or course, product, or service. That communication is so important. In Profit Without Products, I’m giving you the three- step communication sequence plus the timeline so you know exactly what to send and when during the launch.
Timing is important. You and I both love examples so there are examples galore. I have some of the best emails that I have found. I have gotten permission from everybody. These examples are going to show you exactly what is possible for you with your audience.
I take it a step further and also give you some prompts to help you craft your own stories so you compel your readers to go along on this journey with you. Of course, you know I’m not going to make you jump without a net. Tech training is included because I don’t consider myself a tech person at all.
I wanted to make sure anybody jumping into the course had everything they needed to set it up step by step. You get the basics on how to set up a blog page, how to do Lead Pages if you want to use Lead Pages, how to set up Facebook audience tracking pixels, and retargeting ads in a super easy step-by-step way.
Once people start talking fast with tech they lose me.
Rachel: So I wanted to make sure it’s super, super simple and easy to follow. Then I also go into a little bit of cutting edge with live stream technology because I love live streaming. Again, the program was created with the first timer in mind.
Whether you have a small list or a list of tens of thousands, I really know and believe that Profit Without Products is going to give you exactly what you need so that you can leverage your list without losing your audience.
For us small listers, we hate to see that unsubscribe number rise up. This is going to show you how to maximize that list and really take care and connect better with your audience. That’s what it’s all about. That’s the jam.
Amy: I am so proud of you for completing this program. I know it was a lot of blood, sweat, and tears that went into it. I’m excited for you to get it into the hands of the people that need it most so thanks for taking a moment to tell us all about it. Again, I am so proud of you.
As we promised, let’s go into these three common mistakes that most people make when they’re just getting started with affiliate marketing.
Rachel: These are really big. If you’re taking notes, please pay extra attention to make sure you follow these. This is going to be your bread and butter. The #1 mistake that I see is people not seeding their audience. What I mean is that people don’t prepare their audience for a launch or a promotion.
They just start throwing random emails that have nothing to do with anything they ever talked about. It’s almost like pushing someone into the deep end of the pool. You want to make sure you are introducing your audience to the person that owns the program.
You would say, “Hey, this is Amy Porterfield. I’ve been a long-time listener of her podcast. Here are some of the things she shared with me. In a couple of weeks a new training is coming out. I would love to be able to share that with you. Click here if you want to learn more.”
You are letting them know something is coming up and you are getting them familiar with your experience with this person. Again, remember the know, like, and trust factor. If they see this person has helped you, they will believe and know this person can also help them.
Rachel: Mistake #2, and this is my major pet peeve in life, drive-by posting. By this I mean when you go on social media and you get into every single Facebook group you are a part of and put the same exact copy, the same photo. You have never participated in that group, you are just showing up to promote this program and it says the exact same thing, “Hey, check this out. Great training. Here’s the link, check it out.”
Two seconds later you go into another group and post the same thing. You then go to another group and another group and you know what happens? First of all, many of us are in the same groups. Your audience is probably in the same groups you are in.
When their notifications start to blow up because they see your name posting in this group and that group and this group it’s annoying and it’s spammy. It’s also not the way to tell a story or help people see the value with intention.
Please, don’t be that drive-by poster or spammer in the groups. It’s tacky.
Step #3 is jumping in without knowing affiliate etiquette. This is super important if you’re thinking that you really want to be seen as an expert in your industry and want to position yourself and if you want to use an affiliate promotion to help get yourself seen in this industry.
Let me give you some etiquette steps because you don’t want to damage the relationships that you’re trying to build. #1 with etiquette is harassing the owner of the program with question after question after question. Please, do a Google search. Google will help answer almost any question you have.
If you do have a question I really want you to think first whether it is necessary for your success or are you just trying to pick their brain for extra tips? I have seen that a lot. They will send emails or, if the organizer has an affiliate group like Todd Herman has just for his affiliates, people will post, “What do you think would be the best practice for me to do?”
Don’t ask them that. That’s your job as the marketer. That’s your job as the person promoting it, to know these things. That is why I wanted to make sure people knew exactly how to do it.
If you have the opportunity to be in an affiliate group with all of the other affiliates, please use the search function within Facebook groups and type your question there, 99% of the time somebody has already asked that question and it’s already been answered.
If you notice there is a tech issue, please clear your cache and history first because they may have caught the tech issue and may have already fixed it before you send them a message.
Amy: If program they are promoting at the time is having a tech issue inside the program, like you have logged in and you noticed the video is not playing, don’t just post it to the public and say, “Hey, you’ve got a problem here.”
Instead, try to make sure it’s not been fixed yet and privately email the product owner. Is that what you’re saying?
Rachel: Correct. And not even the product owner, their support team.
Amy: Perfect. That’s a great point to bring up. When people are launching we all know, if you’ve already done your own launch, it is incredibly stressful. In addition to that, I don’t even use affiliates that much because it’s so much extra work, but if you are using affiliates, that product owner is now answering a million questions for the affiliates.
If the product owner is smart they have a support team doing it. Like Rachel said, see if you can go to their support team if you have any issues. Then, in addition, be really mindful of the fact that they are probably stressed out.
Like Rachel said, if you can find the answer elsewhere it is probably best to do so. You want to be the best partner possible so that they invite you back and tell other people “This person was such a great affiliate partner you should work with her for your program.”
Rachel: Absolutely. Actually Amy, I’ve seen it on a couple of promotions that I’ve been part of as well, they have said they have a team but the affiliates are asking so many questions it’s not worth it to them so they will do away with the affiliate program altogether. They will then just selectively invite a couple of people back who are really low maintenance who got great results.
Amy: That’s exactly what I’ve done with some of my promos. I think it’s important, like you’ve mentioned, to be such a great partner that people want you to come back. This has been so fantastic. I love that we went over the eight steps to successful affiliate marketing.
You talked about the reasons why it’s such a great dry run for your own launch. And the # 1 reason in my book is that it gives you incredible confidence to move forward in your own business and launch your own programs.
Of course, be really mindful of the three common mistakes so you don’t make them and you become the best partner that creator of the program has ever seen so that you get invited back again and again.
Rachel, again, congratulations on Profit Without Products. I’m so excited for you. Thank you for being on the show.
Rachel: Thank you for having me again, Amy. I appreciate it.
Amy: There you have it. I absolutely loved this mini training. I think we covered a lot. We talked about those eight steps to successful affiliate marketing. We talked about the reasons being an affiliate is a great dry run for your own launch.
Maybe you’ve launched in the past with dismal results or maybe you just haven’t launched yet. I want to encourage you to test the waters by promoting somebody else’s program. I think one of the biggest takeaways I got from this interview was to find somebody to promote that kind of has their act together that will help you with supporting copy for your emails and lay out all of the dates for you and be a really solid partner.
I think it will make your life easier and you will have a better experience if you do so. I just wanted to throw that out there. Again, at http://www.amyporterfield.com/pwp you can find all of the information about Profit Without Products and I can’t wait to hear about all of your success stories whether you are launching somebody else’s programs or launching your own.
It’s all about jumping into the game and actually doing it even when you are fearful and nervous and stressed out about it. Do it anyway. I think that’s my motto with everything I do in my business. I’m always nervous about what I’m going to do. I’m always a little bit fearful but I just do it scared.
When it comes to launching, whether it’s your own stuff or somebody else’s stuff, I think that’s kind of a motto, at least in the early years, that will help you keep moving forward.
Thank you so very much for tuning in. I want to tell you one more thing. Next week, Episode #116, is an entire launch review of my latest launch with Courses That Convert. I’m going to share how much money we generated, how much money we spent on Facebook ads (a little teaser, it was a lot), what worked for Facebook ads, what didn’t work for us, what worked for our emails, the mistakes I made along the way, how I had to tweak things in the middle.
I tell you the good, bad, the ugly. I share it all. It’s kind of a big, meaty episode. I already recorded it for you. It comes out next week. It’s #116 and I hope to see you there.
In the meantime, good luck with all of your affiliate marketing if this is something that gets you excited and you want to look into it. Also, have an amazing week. I can’t wait to connect with you again soon. Bye for now.