It’s a Saturday night and you’re about to go on a date. You’re all excited and can’t wait to meet that special person but unfortunately, the tragedy strikes. The restaurant where you’ve reserved a table at has to close for tonight because of some unknown issues.
And there you are, freaking out and not knowing what to do. Of course, you don’t want to call that special person and cancel your date. Instead, you turn on your computer, go to Google and start searching for restaurants in your area with delicious food and a great customer service.
The first result in Google search is an article writing about top 5 best restaurants in your place. You’ve picked the first one on the list because you don’t really have time to compare it with other four, called them up and luckily for you, they have a table for two. Thanks god!
Before you even knew it, you’re dressed up, looking fresh, smelling great and on your way to meet your date with your heart pumping at 200 miles per hour.
After a short discussion with your date that you had to change a location, you’re on your way to that restaurant, the one recommended to you by a random blogger on Google.
You have an awesome dinner and end up falling in love with that restaurant, so much that you’ve started to go there on a weekly basis with your new partner.
Nice story with a happy ending, right? But what’s the point of this story?
– The power of referrals
You see, what happened here is that the writer of that post is the one that saved this story from having a bad ending. They’ve took a few minutes of their time to think of some great places in your area and then explained to their readers why they should go to that place as well.
You may or may not know but this is exactly what some people are doing to make a full time income, referring people to other businesses.
Or in other words – affiliate marketing.
Yes, people are paying their bills, going to vacations and quitting their boring jobs just by doing exactly what that writer did, talking about other people’s business and earning money by doing so and in this post, you will learn how to get paid for that as well.
Affiliate marketing has been there long before the digital age but thanks to the internet, the game has completely changed, enabling every day folks to rise to riches without ever developing their own product or a service.
There are a lot of ways to do affiliate marketing and today, I’ll help you learn how you can start your own affiliate marketing business with the help of only one tool – Clickfunnels.
- What is Affiliate Marketing (More In-depth)
- What is Clickfunnels
- How to Use Clickfunnels for Affiliate Marketing
- Closing Thoughts
This will be a bit longer one so grab some popcorn, sit back and enjoy the content!
What is Affiliate Marketing
Affiliate marketing is a business model where an individual gets paid every time he/she brings a customer to a company he/she is promoting. Affiliate marketers are paid once a product they’re promoting is bought through their referring link.
Payments can vary a lot, from one-time payments to recurring commissions being paid out every month as long as the customer they’ve brought to the specific business keeps paying for their products and/or services.
Affiliates act like middlemen between the seller and the buyer. They get paid when they successfully connect the two.
This business has exploded in the digital age and is estimated to hit $6.8 billion in spending by the end of 2020. It is widely applied and more and more companies keep opening affiliate programs in order to attract independent marketers to promote their products and services.
In fact, as soon as I’d finished creating the image you see above with Canva, they’ve offered me a free premium feature of their’s when I refer a friend. While this is not affiliate marketing exactly, it shows how companies are willing to reward people for referring others to their business.
You may have heard that this business is dead or that it’s too saturated. And you know what, it is! It’s too saturated with bad marketers who treat this business like a get rich quick and get angry because they haven’t made a million dollars in a week.
There is this stereotype around affiliate marketing and that is that you can get rich with a push of a button. This is absolutely not true. It requires time, effort, a little bit of money and patience.
How does affiliate marketing work?
First of all, you have to pick a company and then the product of their’s you want to promote. Companies like Google, Nike, Apple and others all have affiliate programs. Starting off, pick just one or two.
For example, I’ve chosen Builderall in the start of my affiliate journey and then added Clickfunnels to my affiliate products list shortly after. If you’d spent some time on this site already, you would have noticed that Clickfunnels is the main product I promote.
Since in this post I am going to talk a lot about Clickfunnels and how to use it to promote your affiliate products, it doesn’t have to mean that you should promote it specifically but if you want, you can.
Anyway, let me now help you pick a company to promote, whether that’s a smaller company like Builderall or Clickfunnels or a giant like Google, Apple or others.
Always look for these things in a company’s affiliate program:
- Great commissions – Obviously, rule #1 is that you should promote a company that pays great commissions.
Stay away from companies paying low commissions like f.e. Amazon. This year, they’ve cut their commissions by 75%. I mean, they were already low before but now, you’d have to make thousands of sales per month to make anything reasonable.
By great commission, I mean 40-50% or even more per sale OR smaller commissions but with products being very expensive.
For example, there are some investing companies that pay 2-3% per sale but note that people invest hundreds of thousands of dollars through these companies. This means that your actual amount of money made per sale easily reaches thousands.
You’d have to do the math yourself here. If a company is selling a product for $500 and they’re paying 40% commission, go for it. If a company pays only 5% commission but sells products that cost tens of thousands of dollars or more, you can go with them as well.
While probably the most important element, there are other things you should look for in a company’s affiliate program besides fat checks.
- Recurring commissions – A subcategory of the above, this one is also very important.
While you can do great without this one, it can really help you start building your recurring monthly income.
If a company sells a subscription based product or a service like f.e. software that you have to pay every month for, chances are they are offering recurring commissions.
This basically means that if you bring a new person to a business and that person buys a software that is paid for every month, you’re also paid a commission of that purchase every month as long as your customer keeps paying for that software.
And if you do a really great job of helping that person benefit from that product, they can end up using it for years which can mean thousands of dollars for you. From just one customer!
This means that you have to do the selling only once and then they can stay for months or years.
The magic of recurring affiliate programs is that the product you’re selling usually isn’t that expensive. Typical software usually costs somewhere around 50-300 bucks per month. Now imagine getting 50% commission on a $300 per month software and you sell it to 10 people who end up staying for 5 years. While not so likely, this can happen if you’re willing to do the work.
However, don’t expect every person you refer to stay for years. Most of them stay for a few months and then end up leaving because they’ve either ran out of money or found another tool to use.
The next one should be obvious yet many people miss this point and are just blinded by commissions.
- Great support – Company you’re about to do business with should respect your work and help you get to your goal as fast and easy as possible.
Many companies have affiliate programs but don’t show respect their affiliates deserve. As affiliates, we’re doing a hard job, especially if the product we’re promoting is expensive.
It’s not as easy as you may think. You really need to show your audience why should they buy something and more importantly, why should they do that through your referral link.
This is why you want to have as much support from the company as you can. This means an affiliate team ready to help you if you have any technical issues which do happen from time to time. Other than that, some promotion material that you can use is also amazing. This counts banners, images, scripts etc.
Companies like Amazon are a great example of what you should avoid. Selling a $1000 product to someone is hard and now imagine getting paid only $30 for it. This is what Amazon does. They really show little to no respect to their affiliates.
Lastly, look for a community of other affiliates from that company. If a company has more than a few thousand affiliates, there should be some kind of a community out there like f.e. a Facebook group. Engaging with other affiliates and learning from their mistakes can help you a lot.
I’ve chosen a product, what now?
After you’ve chosen a product, the fun starts – it’s time to promote it. As an affiliate, your job is to bring people to a company’s sales page and they will take care of the rest. Although the company does the most of the selling, as I’ve said, you have to do some of it too.
There are many ways to get traffic to your affiliate links. One of the best ways is to develop helpful content around that product. For example, the product I am going to recommend in this post is Clickfunnels and the content I am producing is how to use Clickfunnels to get more affiliate sales.
Your example may be how to use xyz software to make great videos or how to pick the right tires for an Audi car.
Of course, before you could possibly do this, you’d have to get familiar with the product itself. If you’re promoting software, you should know how they work and how can one benefit from them. If you’re promoting tires, you should know a thing or two about cars.
This content could be in a form of a video and then uploaded to Youtube or a written post like f.e. a blog post.
After you’ve created a piece of content, the platform you’ve published it on will drive traffic organically to it and you can also take this up to another level by promoting your content with paid ads.
For example, you’ve probably gotten to this website from Google. You’ve searched for a topic and my post showed up as one of the suggested answers. This goes the same for a Youtube video, you upload it to the platform and then Youtube organically promotes it to it’s users.
The thing that differentiates Google and Youtube from social media websites like Facebook and Instagram is that content posted on social media can go viral more easily but it dies off pretty quickly. On the other hand, if your posts ranks on Google, it can stay there for years.
Content published on Facebook can last for a day or two before it stops getting views while a Youtube video can get views for years.
Your content will play a major role in getting traffic and building an audience of people who want to buy products you’re promoting. But it’s only a part of the game.
If you don’t want to wait a lot of time for Google to pick up your new blog, you can fasten things up a little bit by running paid ads.
While you can run ads on almost any platform, Google and Facebook are two of the best platforms to use for this purpose because they have the most users and can help you target any kind of people you want to sell to.
Got it? Great, now we’re going to move onto the part you all want to hear about. How to develop an actual offer and sell your affiliate products which leads us to…
What is Clickfunnels
Clickfunnels is a software company ran by Russell Brunson. It’s software is made for creating and designing sales funnels, email automations and affiliate programs. Feel free to check out my full Clickfunnels review for more in-depth information about this software.
Inside that review I also share some of the commissions I’ve made promoting the software. While it’s not a lot, I still have a long way to go!
And we will do that with Clickfunnels. Although it has a lot of features, it’s really simple to use and you can do really good without knowing more than a half of the features they have.
They also offer a ton of free courses for you to study that cover topics such as not only affiliate marketing but sales, business, marketing, traffic and building a company in general.
However, most of these courses come only with Platinum and Collective plans which are pricey, especially Collective. Don’t get discouraged if you can’t afford those plans yet, in Startup plan, you do get a few nice courses that can really help you out as well.
What is an affiliate funnel?
Affiliate funnel is a small collection of steps that can help you build your email list to which you will be selling your affiliate offers.
Now, why would you do this? Why bother creating a funnel and an email list?
You see, most of the content you published isn’t going to be hosted on the platform you truly own. You don’t fully own your Youtube channel, Youtube does. You don’t fully own your Facebook group, Facebook does.
When it comes to a blog, yes, you are a full owner but most of that blog’s income will depend on Google.
Imagine you have a Youtube channel of a 500k+ subscribers and that cash just keeps rolling. You think everything is perfect and that nothing can affect your income.
You wake up the next day and Youtube has shut you down with no warning. You can’t get your channel back. What now?
This scenario is indeed possible and it has happened to some people.
Maybe a group of haters has decided to massively report you and that leads to you being banned. These things are out of your control.
Let’s switch to a different picture now. Imagine you have the same channel with the same amount of subscribers and you’ve also gathered your subscribers’ emails from your videos.
Now, you can reach out to them whenever you want. Youtube can now shut you down 10 times and you’d still be safe because you have a list of your subscribers who want to hear from you and will help you rebuild another channel by watching your new videos.
Email list is not just an audience you truly own but it also helps you build an even closer relationship with your subscribers. When your audience trusts you, they will buy whatever you offer.
This doesn’t just count for affiliate offers. Maybe a year or two years from now you decide to develop your own products. Great, you have a list of people who will be more than happy to check out your product.
How to attract people to your list?
Before you even create an email list, you’ll have to develop something that will attract people to subscribe. People don’t just randomly type in their email addresses all over the internet. Instead, they do it when they want to receive information or a special offer from a person or a business.
This is why you want to come up with a special offer that you can exchange for people’s email addresses. Yes, you’ll give them something for free.
This thing we’re talking about here is called a lead magnet.This is a small product, maybe an info product like an eBook or a coupon, that you will use to, as the name says, attract leads.
As an affiliate, you probably don’t have any coupons or discounts since you don’t sell your own products. This is why an info product like a case study or a small eBook works perfectly for affiliate marketing.
For example, you may be into fitness. Your info product could be How to Get Started With Fitness And Achieve Your First Results. This way, even if you don’t look like a Greek god, you can still help them out since you’ll be targeting total beginners who have no clue about what to do after they’ve entered the gym.
In the make money online world, your case study could be How I’ve Made My First $10,000 Online with XYZ. Things like these attract people.
Russell Brunson talks a lot about this in the One Funnel Away Challenge and in his offer sequencing lessons. If you’re into marketing, this course will really help you out. It’s also inexpensive, going for only $100 one time. Read my review of it, it’s interesting.
By having an awesome lead magnet and actually helping people out a little, you’re increasing your chances significantly for getting them to buy your affiliate offers.
This goes back to the thing I’ve mentioned earlier in the post. When your subscribers see you as a helpful person and they trust everything you say, they’ll buy anything you offer to them.
And if you keep sending these people more interesting emails, they’ll have a reason to stay on your list.
Another thing you’ll have to have ready before you even create an email list is the paid offer. Yes, you’re not selling your own products but there is still something you can do to sweeten the deal for your subscribers.
What I am talking about is offering bonuses to people for purchasing through your affiliate links.
You see, although it’s not at it’s peak, affiliate marketing is competitive and there is a high chance that some of your subscribers will receive offers similar to your’s from someone else.
For example, your affiliate product could be a 90 Day Fitness Workout Plan. A bonus that people can get for buying through your affiliate link could be a Nutrition Course. These two go hand-in-hand and it’s that that makes this offer great. You could add even more related products to your offer.
In addition, your bonuses make the offer itself more valuable. This way, the price of the product, whatever the price is, will seem inexpensive towards what the customer is getting.
What do I mean by this?
If the course you’re promoting costs $200 and they get that same amount of value for buying that course in case the seller himself/herself doesn’t offer bonuses, by adding a course worth $100, the value of the total offer is $300.
This way, the value they get is bigger than the price they pay for that product.
Again, for more info on these topics, check out the One Funnel Away Challenge. Everything I’ve talked about so far is covered so in-depth there by Russell and two other marketers.
Anyway, where does Clickfunnels fit into all of this?
Hold on, you’ll find out in a second…
How to Use Clickfunnels for Affiliate Marketing
Time to get down to business. Now I will show you how to create your first affiliate funnel with Clickfunnels. Don’t worry, even if you hate all the techy stuff, you can do this. It’s pretty simple.
After all, if you have some money to spare, Clickfunnels has a marketplace where you can literally buy other people’s funnels and use them as your own. I also give some funnels for free as a bonus for joining Clickfunnels through my affiliate link. More about this later on.
Anyway, the first page we will be creating in this process is called a landing page. This is a page where you’ll actually be offering your lead magnet.
A landing page like the one you see in the picture above is actually pretty simple to create. In case of Clickfunnels, there are already hundreds of templates that have over 90% of the messy work done for you. All you have to do on your end is just enter the content.
After you have material required for us to go (lead magnet, bonus offers), it’s time to get started.
First of all, you should open a Clickfunnels account. They have a 14 day free trial which means that you have enough time to create an affiliate funnel (this really doesn’t take a lot of time) and test it before you even have to pay for the software.
However, note that the typical sales cycle is around 30 days and don’t expect much if any money in those 14 days from your affiliate offers. Why?
Most of people need to see a product around 7 times before buying it. This is called a Rule of 7 in the marketing world. Don’t get discouraged if nobody buys your products the first time you offer them to your list of subscribers, it takes time.
However, note that I’ve said most of people. There is a percentage of people you’ll probably stumble upon that are hot buyers and this is why you do want to make an offer after they’ve subscribed. Hold on, I’ll show you how to do that in just a second.
And in case you already have some following and you make an offer to people that already know you, it can take less time to convert them as well, especially if they’ve seen the product you’re promoting before and are familiar with it.
So, what to do next?
First step is to go to Clickfunnels and select Build Funnel.
Before we proceed, I’ve wanted to let you know that if you ever get stuck with anything inside of Clickfunnels, they do have live chat with a support team ready to help.
They also have tons of tutorials. Just Google the issue you’re having and their video will pop up.
Time to move on. After you’ve selected Build Funnel, select the funnel’s goal.
Our goal is to build an email list so go on and select Collect Emails.
After you’ve done that, you’ll be asked to name a funnel and once you’re done with that as well, voila! Your funnel is ready.
Once you’ve set up your sales funnel, it’s time to choose the template you want to use. Whether you want a fancy template or just a simple page with some text on it, it’s up to you.
Remember that your message is way more important than your page’s design. However, neither would I go with an ugly looking page.
Don’t stress out over templates though. Just pick one and go with it! There is very little hard work you have to do in this part so don’t worry.
After you’ve picked the template, it’s time to edit it!
When it comes to the actual editing of the page, Clickfunnels makes it super simple for you. Although it takes time to learn how to use the software, the process is really simple and it comes in very easy once you get a hand of it, like with anything else in life.
For example, besides trying Clickfunnels, I’ve also stepped on the skis for the first time in my life this winter. Same like with Clickfunnels, I didn’t know anything and couldn’t stand on them for more than 5 seconds, after which my butt would be buried deeply under the snow.
But this was on my first day. The second day, things got a little bit better and on the third day, I was skiing way more smoothly and went on the longer, steeper tracks without falling a lot (although I did a few times, I admit).
See where I am going with this? It takes practice. But you want to make the most out of the free 14 days you get if on the tight budget so you don’t have much time to practice. Therefore, all you really want to do is create the most basic landing page you can.
Here is the look inside the editor. To edit the text, just click on it and type in whatever you want.
Same goes for images. Just click on them and you can change the image URL or upload one from your computer.
Anyway, you can just watch a 10 minute Youtube video for the most basic stuff.
When it comes to the actual content you should put on your landing page, your headline is the most important part. It should be catchy, attention grabbing and it should entice visitors to stay on that landing page.
Your short script should get people familiar with your offer and what they will get for free. The script should be short but sharp. For example, let’s take the Make Money Online niche.
A headline on the landing page could be something like: People Are Making Over $100 a Day With XYZ… And You Can Too!
And the part of the script could be: My free eBook will teach you exactly how xyz works and how you can get started today.
Simple yet effective script will get you way better results than flashy images so don’t stress so much about the design. Although, you do want your colors to match at least. I am not saying ignore the design but to not put the most of your focus to it.
After you’ve created a landing page, the next part is the thank you page. This is the page where you can nurture your leads and introduce yourself. You can also deliver your lead magnet on this page or in your welcome email. We’ll get to that in just a second.
You can also make your first offer on this page. As I’ve said, there is a chance that hot buyers stumble upon your offer. You don’t want to let me down, do you?
It would be great if you put a video on your thank you page, introducing yourself and talking about you and your business. At the end of that video, you could make them an offer that you’ve set up before launching a campaign.
This is basically it when it comes to page builders. Simple funnel, landing page and a thank you page is all you really need. You don’t need a sales page since you don’t sell your own products.
Now, we need to get into something that’s even more important and this is where you’ll either make it or break it – followup.
What we’re doing here is building a list of subscribers. Email list is the most popular option for which we’ve originally went for but you can also build a chatbot list which is a great alternative. Both have it’s pros and cons and it’s really on you to study them and pick your preferred option.
I’ve just wanted to let you know that there is an alternative if you don’t want to go with an email list.
Anyway, I’ll go with email this time since Clickfunnels has a great app for email marketing called Actionetics.
This app is available in Platinum and Collective plans from Clickfunnels. If you can’t afford these plans, just pick another 3rd party autoresponder and apply the same principles.
With all of that said, let’s get into how to actually message your subscribers effectively.
I actually really like Actionetics because it helps you understand your subscribers and their behavior. It also helps you see which subscribers are the most valuable to your list (which ones are buying the most of your products). More about that in my Actionetics review which I’ve linked above.
So, how to get started?
The first step is obviously creating an email list inside Actionetics. Make sure to name your list in the way so that you’ll remember it. Now, it may not seem like a big deal but if you end up doing this for a long time, you’ll probably have a lot more email lists.
After you’ve created an email list, you’ll need to connect your list to your page editor. This way, when somebody enters their email on your landing page, it will be added to your list inside of Actionetics.
How to build a good quality list?
A lot of people believe that by having more subscribers, you’ll ultimately be making more money. While there is some truth in this, of course, the often overlooked factor is the quality of your email list.
Where is the value in 10,000 subscribers when only 0.1% of them is opening your emails?
This is why you want to focus on the quality AND the quantity of your email list. So, how to do this?
Besides sending great offers and interesting emails (we’ll get to that in a second), a great thing you can do is filter people who just want your lead magnet from those who want to hear more from you. You can do this by enabling a double opt in feature inside of Actionetics.
Before you launch your campaign, you should have a couple of emails ready to be sent automatically one after another, or so called email sequence.
The first email your list will be receiving after they’ve subscribed or after a confirmation email (in case you have a double opt in) is the welcome email.
Welcome email should not be ignored. It sets the stage for future failure or success. This is where you get a chance to make a strong first impression that will lead to your subscribers opening the rest of your emails.
What makes a great welcome email? Ideally, in your welcome email you should introduce yourself and tell a little bit about you and your expertise. As an affiliate, you don’t have your own company with employees, products and services.
Instead, your promote other people’s companies. This way, you can’t really showcase your company, portfolio etc because you don’t have them. But what you can showcase is knowledge.
If you can provide valuable information to people that can actually help them improve in whatever area of their lives, they will stay on your list.
So in your welcome email, you want to show a little bit of that expertise. You don’t have to be the best in that area but you should be better or more accomplished than your subscribers. This way, you can guide them to your level and beyond in your emails. This is what will have them trust you and buy your offers.
For example, if you’re promoting fitness products, you should know a thing or two about fitness.
After a few emails of valuable, educative information, offer them a product. If you’ve done a good job of providing them with helpful information, after some time, they will trust you enough to buy from you.
When it’s all set and done, it’s time to publish your funnel. There are many different ways you can do this.
You can tell people about your free offer at the end of your Youtube video or blog post. You can link it in your Instagram bio and invite people to it from your Instagram stories.
Another way is paid ads. Creating a Facebook ad that sends people to your landing page is a great option but is a whole other ball game because you’re targeting people who have no idea who you are. In other words, it will take a lot more time to sell them.
Affiliate marketing is an industry that is pretty lucrative but a lot of work is required to be accomplished in it. Clickfunnels is a software that can definitely help you on your way to achieving success with affiliate marketing but don’t think that you can get rich overnight. You definitely can but not in a day or a week.
I hope that you’ve enjoyed this guide. If you’re ready to get started with Clickfunnels, check out some nice bonuses I have for you once you come onboard. A gift from me to you for reading my content and buying through my link. 😀
If you know any other affiliates who need help, feel free to share this article with them. Other than that, have an awesome day!