Some Thoughts On Affiliation Marketing

Affiliation marketing is one of the most widespread forms of performance marketing today and one can help you make some money in the process. In essence, a brand rewards someone with a small amount or with a percentage of the price of the product for promoting the specific product or service to his/her audience.

Thoughts On Affiliation Marketing


Affiliation marketing is a practical and legitimate way to make some money and pay for your bills, especially in the blogging world (there are others of course!)

Many bloggers and influencers promote products and services they find valuable to their audience and take a small commission when a purchase has been made.

It is something that I do too since I always try to spread out what I am learning and the products I am using for running my activities (you can check here my disclosure page for more details).

This is the main reason why I have strategic connections and promote products and services like the AppSumo, the Briefcase, the Drag, the DropBox, the Evernote, the Interact, the Leadpages, the process.st, the Thinkific, the Trello, and the Udemy to mention only a few!

And it is also the reason that I’m trying to leverage the power of affiliation marketing for my own goals. But before seeing that let’s take a quick look at what affiliate marketing is.

What Exactly Affiliation Marketing Is?

Affiliation marketing is one of the most popular ways today to earn some money by promoting products, services, or brands you like and use.

It is one of the ways most bloggers and online marketers use the earn some side-income while promoting other people’s products via their blog, their social media accounts or their newsletters.

In its more elementary form, affiliation marketing works as follows:

How Affiliate Marketing Works

Source: JustLearnWP.com

Affiliation marketing (as most things in marketing) has two faces: the one you can profit from when you are promoting products and services that you like; and the other one you can use as a brand to reach out a larger audience and develop a group of people who are willing to promote your brand to their audiences!

You see, affiliation marketing is a big business and can help you reach in places you could not reach alone!

Why? Because it has been recorded that (all citations below from  the article: 23 Affiliate Marketing Statistics to Help You Up Your Game in 2019):

  • 15% of the total digital media advertising revenue is attributed to affiliate marketing,
  • Affiliate programs generate 15%–30% of all sales for advertisers,
  • More than 50% of affiliate-referred traffic comes from mobile devices,
  • 35% of affiliates earn over $20,000,
  • Annual affiliate marketing spending is projected to hit the $6.8 billion mark,
  • 81% of marketers and 84% of publishers leverage the power of affiliate marketing, and
  • Affiliate programs generate 15%–30% of all sales for advertisers.

These are only some statistics that can show the power of affiliation marketing and why it is important today for a blogger or online marketer to leverage its power.

And this is the reason why I have started to develop my own affiliation network to help me promote my books, courses, and services to a larger audience.

For me, though the affiliation scheme for an agency or brand is not just a way for someone to make some extra money. It a way for someone to show his/her trust and support to an agency or a brand.

Take a look below my proposed affiliation marketing and support scheme as I employ it in this site.

My Proposed Affiliation & Support Scheme

I believe the model of support and affiliation marketing that will introduce to you, will help us (you and me) to provide value to the lives and works of the people around us. I strongly believe that our joint efforts can help people start a digital business and make it grow by providing constant value and a positive impact on its clients.

First of all, to work together takes commitment! And to become a supporter and affiliate of mine it may take a little more effort.

Why? Because what I do is mostly related to the changing of old habits and to a behavioral change in the view of achieving desired results. And that it is difficult most of the time.

This is the reason I proposed a new scheme of support and affiliation ranging from the limited interaction to the new opportunities you can capitalize on in order to achieve your financial goals.

I call this model of interaction, EPA model which stands for Engagement, Participation, and Affiliation, expressing all the modes of interaction with a live site.

In short, the proposed model is shown below:Takis Affiliation Model
The model includes 4 basic interaction tiers between the interested party (i.e. you) and the process owner (i.e. my site or me).

I will describe, in short, what I think that it is included in each tier and what can I offer to the different types of users (for instance someone might want to be a supporter for me or a fan and not an affiliate, etc.).

Tier 0 – Limited Interaction

The first tier of interaction (tier 0) is the level of limited interaction. In this tier belong all the prospects and users browse occasionally in my site, try to find specific information, etc.

Most of these users are potential leads if they find something interesting but the bulk number of them never would become more active than that. Some of them (if they are site owners or company members) may become occasional sponsors, write a comment or submit an article as guest authors but would never forward to tier 1, i.e to active engagement with me, my associates, my community or my site.

Typical activities of tier 0 users are:

  • Browsing articles
  • Read casual topics
  • Read the newsletter
  • Listen to the podcast
  • Become sporadic guest authors
  • Review some tutorials
  • Sporadic sponsorship placement
  • Perhaps donation
  • etc.

For this category of user, the site provides many facilities to help him/her find the information as quickly as possible and interact effectively with the site.

There are search facilities, categories, sidebar information, newsletter subscription, communities for interaction or for finding fellow peers, podcast subscription, a guest article section, a sponsorship page for the interesting ones, and many other services.

Tier 1 – Engagement

The second tier is the engagement tier and related to the users and prospects want to take their interaction with me and my site a step further.

In tier 1- engagement belongs to all the users from tier 0 who find value in this site and my work and want more! They are the users interesting more on what going on, interact more and communicate more.

Typically these users are the main target group of this site and:

  • Read specific topics & comment a lot on the subjects covered,
  • Follow closely the tutorials and the how-tos trying to find ideas to apply to their own work or/and life,
  • Search for solutions to common problems and for help,
  • Actively participate in the community in order to meet people with similar problems and find solutions,
  • Ask Takis or submit questions for things he can help them,
  • Communicate for publishing their ideas as guest authors,
  • Focus on specific topics and ask more information about these subjects,
  • Send questions, remarks, and updates,
  • Ask for more information on subjects of their interest
  • Fill in the reader’s survey to provide feedback,
  • Participate in Surveys & Quizzes
  • Buy books or courses from this site,
  • Ask for more resources,
  • Attend webinars,
  • etc.

For these users, there are many services and facilities to help them find the information and resources they need or communicate with people who can possibly help them.

These are the users want to learn and educate themselves in order to help themselves and the people around them. It is the target group on which this blog is focused on and they can get much value by subscribing to my newsletter, reading the blog, listen to the podcast, review video and tutorials, participating in the community, get the right products or find suitable resources.

Tier 2 – Participation

Tier 2 – participation is based on the activities described for users of tier 1 and typically it includes similar activities with one distinctive difference: the larger degree of involvement and active participation in the proceeding of the community.

These users are the true fans and supporters of my work and participate in the major part of what I do.

Typically these users trust my work and participate more in various activities:

  • Participate in the Launching campaigns for new products and services provide feedback and promoting them to their networks,
  • Buy courses and or books,
  • Have active participation in the communities,
  • Seek more help,
  • Build Business Relationships
  • Interact with Peers
  • Provide more opportunities for cooperation and interaction

This target group is my support group and besides my sincere gratitude, I offer them various opportunities for participation in what I do.

More specifically for these users exist:

  • The Takis Athanassiou Launch Group. It is a group of people wants to participate and review my new books, courses, programs, etc. It is a free (but closed) group of people, working on a pro bono base, who can preview much of my work, comment or provide feedback and promote my new launces. If you are interested in participate, please fill in this form and … we will be in touch!
  • More support and help via strategic sessions, skype calls or webinars, communication with me via my contact me page, the Ask Takis page, or my profiles on LinkedIn or Maven,
  • Professional help via my Clarity profile,
  • Sponsorships and highly promoted guest posts,
  • Consulting and coaching services,
  • Training,
  • Building a network of peers via communities,
  • etc.

Everyone, of course, can participate in every service he/she thinks can help him/her achieve his/her goals. But tier 2 is a segmentation of users who not only are consumers of my products and services but also co-authors and co-producers. That’s why and some of these services are premium ones!

Tier 3 – Affiliation

Finally the tier 3 – affiliation is your opportunity to capitalize on my products, services, networks, and resources. This is the classical affiliation level (find more information here) and addressed to all users believe in what I do and want to promote it to their networks gaining some commission out of the process.

This is the group of people believing that my work can help a lot more people and want to participate in that. Ideally, the people of this group have been members of tier 1 or/and tier 2 and have gained personal experience of the work that has been done and of the products offered!

For these people, I offer a commission starting from 20% and can raise up to 40%+ depending on the items offered.

To start with developing my affiliate network I offer commissions for the products I host in Gumroad site. To participate in this effort (and to ALL consequent product affiliations may be developed later for this site or other sites) you first need to read carefully the Proposed Affiliate Agreement and if you agreed to those guidelines to proceed by filling in this form.

These are the first steps and as far as Gumroad concerns the whole procedure is described here!

More specific instructions for affiliations in different sites will communicate due time to the people expressed interest in becoming affiliates.

These 4 tiers represent to full range of support and affiliation to a brand, a product or a service and I think can cover many cases of affiliation marketing!

The fact though is that the effect of a good affiliation marketing effort reflects directly to your check account and this is something to consider carefully!

Question: What else you would have to add to this discussion about the affiliation marketing? You can leave a comment by clicking here.

    Takis Athanassiou is an IT Consultant, Blogger, Trainer & Writer, active in the areas of leadership, business consulting, e-Learning and social media. He aims at the development of people, business and assets! You can check out his blog, add him in Google+ and follow him on Twitter.

    Please note: I reserve the right to delete comments that are offensive or off-topic.