Going to the movies, hiring DVDs or, increasingly, streaming online or via your television, is a leisure activity enjoyed by millions of Nigerians. Many love to share their opinions of the latest releases or classic titles, reviewing them, then exchanging ideas across their social media network. Some even go so far as to blog regularly, committing their reactions to the latest Marvel film or RomCom to print, then posting these articles for the world to read.
But no matter how much of an amateur blogger you might see yourself, were you aware it is a very straightforward process to actually monetize your blog, therefore generating some income from your writing? This type of enterprise is called affiliate marketing. Here are the basic steps you would take.
What is affiliate marketing?
Affiliate marketing is a very straightforward business model that has actually been around for some time. The reason for its longevity is down to the fact it is such a straightforward operation. There are two parties involved: a retailer who offers his products for sale via an affiliate program, and a marketer who agrees to promote the retailer’s products in exchange for a commission. Once the marketer has signed up to the program, the retailer will send a series of hyperlinks which will direct any site visitors to a purchase page.
Choosing a product to promote
Obviously, the product is the important aspect of this model. Where you would become involved as the marketer would be by posting these links onto your existing blog. But a far more important aspect of the process is not trying to channel customers towards these links, it is the actual content itself. This is where affiliate marketing is quite different from proceeding business models which simply involved placing adverts strategically onto web pages and hoping for the best.
In order to tap into affiliate marketing, you need to find the right blend of front-end blog articles relating to the products (or services) being promoted. For example, perhaps you are already writing about relationship issues for the Nigerian singles market. You could monetize your blog by affiliating to a black dating site, gaining commission on each new sign-up you inspire. If you are already writing a film blog which is commanding a decent readership, then you have a potential customer base at your disposal. How you inspire these customers to click on hyperlinks is entirely up to your own creativity and imagination.
Obviously, there has to be a clear link between what you are writing about and the products you are promoting. If you are blogging about the film industry, then it would make sense to target DVDs or soundtrack CDs. You can find out which retailers specialize in these subjects by conducting online research. But the type of organization that offers affiliate programs ranges from relatively low scale promoters retail outlets to the likes of Amazon. Here you would have to balance the size of the potential market with items that are clearly very popular and would, therefore, represent a competitive arena. Ideally, it would be a good idea to focus on a niche area.
If you blog about Marvel films, then this could be where you try to channel your readers. In order to attract potential customers, you need to be writing articles which will encourage them to bookmark your blog. Static text is the enemy of any dynamic website, so ensure you update your pages regularly with all the latest film reviews. Use your imagination to be as proactive as possible when it comes to connecting with customers, inviting them to share your reviews across their own social media.