Hi! Just wanted to make sure that you know that many of the links I use are affiliate links. This means that, after I have fallen in love with a product, I ask if I can help to promote it. If you click on my link and end up purchasing, I get a commission and a very grateful heart. So, thank you.
Being an idealist, it bugs me that I would have to add on the words “value-driven” and “honest” to a really great business model. Shouldn’t every business model be value-driven and honest? But, alas! the popularity and general ease of affiliate marketing has attracted a bunch of noise, scams, and sleaze into the mix. It’s darn hard to find your way without selling your soul. That’s the bad news. The good news is that the pendulum is starting to swing in the other direction. Tra-la-la! There are good guys to the rescue and on a mission to turn affiliate marketing on its head.
What is Value-Driven and Honest Affiliate Marketing Anyway???
In short, value-driven, honest affiliate marketing is everything that it should be. It starts with quality products. After a decade of crawling through the affiliate marketing trenches, I came to see that the quality of the products is the last thing most affiliate programs talk about. Boo.
I was lucky to get in on the ground floor of a new affiliate marketing program that really opened my eyes and pushed me to grow and understand what was important to me in my online business. I got a behind-the-scenes look at those huge, shiny, multi-million dollar product launches. This really opened my eyes to the fact that it was never about the product. It is even less about the consumer. It is all about the money.
Interestingly enough, the group I was in was really focused on turning all of that around and bringing the focus back to the consumer. It was about putting integrity first. I credit that group for really clarifying things for me and allowing me to finally give myself permission to listen to my own voice and to know that the only way for me to run an online business is with heart, soul, and integrity.
Now……. I am no longer with that group. I write more about my decision to leave and the problems with high ticket affiliate marketing HERE.
How Do I Find Honest Affiliate Marketing Opportunites?
The simplest answer is to start by looking at any and all physical and digital products and tools that you use and love. I am 100% over affiliate marketing being about signing up for a Clickbank account and randomly picking offers that have high conversion rates. Oh my gerd. So much yuck. In theory, Clickbank has cleaned up its act over the years, but it, along with places like JV zoo is where every sleazy, quick cash looker heads. I write more about this world of yuck and why to avoid it HERE.
OK, so make a list of your favorite things. Head to the company websites or type the company name into google along with the words “affiliate program.” Not everyone will have a program set up, but you’ll be surprised at how many do.
If you don’t already have a website, I highly recommend you start one. Don’t get overwhelmed with this. It can be something as simple as a single-page site to a blog that grows with time. Read more about the how and why of starting a blog HERE.
Most affiliate programs are easy peasy to apply to and have quick acceptance. There will be some that require a huge following and proof that you are going to send them sales. Don’t get discouraged by these, just put them on a “maybe later” list and move on.
Getting Started With Affiliate Marketing
This is kind of like my affiliate marketing “light” article. It just is to darn hard to recommend any affiliate marketing programs without opening up a can of worms. No matter how pure the motives, affiliate marketing is a master of getting people to start focusing on the sales and forget about the product and customer. That is why it is important to have your home base, your website, to keep everything in line.
If you are drawn to slick landing pages and sales funnels with one-time offers, upsells, downsells, and all that jazz, I’m not going to be much of a help. Sales funnels can be wonderful and an efficient way to make sales, but starting your base of affiliate marketing, it’s a way to get lost quickly.
Start first with a simple blog or website and learn how to monetize it with affiliate offers for products that you absolutely love and trust. A great, insanely well-organized, step-by-step course for setting up a high-performing blog can be found HERE. There is definitely enough information there for you to get your affiliate links in and create some great posts to market your chosen products. If you already have a blog set up or just want to cut to the chase of learning affiliate marketing best practices for a blog, check out this affiliate training bundle that includes a list of 500 affiliate programs.
Think of affiliate marketing as telling all your friends and family about the great new pair of walking sandals you just got. See, you aren’t going to tell them to run out and buy the shoes that just gave you blisters are you? Or call up your friend and tell them to buy a pair of shoes you’ve never even tried on or even seen? No way. You tell the people you love about the products you love because you think they will love them too. And be of benefit to them. Right? Just go at affiliate marketing like that and you’ll be gold.
If you want to read up on other soul-centered business ideas, head over here.