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The TRUTH About Affiliate Marketing | How I Make Passive Income on YouTube

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– Hey guys, my name is Christian Taylor, Welcome back to Craylor Made, where I like to talk about all things branding, marketing and entrepreneurship. So, some of you have asked me to talk about affiliate marketing. Yes, affiliate marketing, the thing that every online entrepreneur dreams of: passive income, you just talk about a brand that you like and you support and you recommend, you include your affiliate link when you talk about it, and when people click the link, you get a commission of the sale, which means you can make money whenever; you can make money at 3am when you’re sleeping, because someone in another country watches your content or reads your blog, buys the product you’re talking about, and that’s cash in your pocket. So here’s the truth about affiliate marketing. I’m not going to clickbait you: here it is at the front. Affiliate Marketing is a long-term game, and chances are most people don’t have what it takes to really succeed. Affiliate Marketing is also not a business. Affiliate Marketing is a piece of a business. Think about it: you’re not just going to get an affiliate link, and just start posting all over your social media and see success: that just feels like an instant sales pitch. People don’t like being sold to; people like feeling like they’re making a choice, they’re making a decision: if they feel like they’re in a sales pitch their instinct is to run.

So, to do affiliate marketing successfully, you need to create a brand around you, around your content, so people are getting educated, they’re learning stuff, they’re watching you for your personality, they’re having a good time, and then they make the choice to go your affiliate link, on their own terms. Affiliate Marketing is a piece of a business. Affiliate Marketing is not the whole business. So how can you really do affiliate marketing successfully? Well, there’s four main ways to do affiliate marketing: through social media or article content, which is what I do, through blog posts and this is targeting SEO, so these are going to be your websites that are like, “Top 10 best web hosts or VPNs”, I mean, if you google search, you’ll find sites that are like a list and a ranking of different companies; usually those are created for affiliate links. Number three, we have MLMs (Multi Level Marketing), through your friends, promoting to your friends. So, if you’re promoting a health product, you’re probably gonna post it to your social media to your friends, without building a dedicated audience around that item. And number four, we have affiliate marketing privately to your freelance clients.

So, this would be like, if you’re a web designer, you’re going to sign up for affiliate programs for domains, web hosting, themes, website builders, and you’re going to use those links with your clients. “Hey, let’s get your domain here, let’s get your web hosting here, let’s get your theme from this site, and here’s the links to do that.” That’s by far the easiest way to get into affiliate marketing, but that’s more so a bonus for your freelance clients, like some bonus revenue; that’s not really passive income. Successful affiliate marketing comes from having an audience that trusts you in that particular niche. This means that your article should never be a sales pitch, your audience should walk away satisfied just watching your article, never clicking the link in the description and never buying anything. They shouldn’t feel like they have to buy something, they should get value from watching your content, and you should build trust with your audience to where they’re then happy, to check out the services you use and click the links, because they really like the value that you are bringing to them. Really be careful about making articles because of affiliate marketing. For example, I’m talking about ABC company, because I’m in their affiliate program and they give me a good payout. No, no, no! Let me just say this. Anyone watching your content will know if you’re just doing it for money. I can tell you being on YouTube, people just know, they can just sniff out whether you’re in it for the money, or whether you really genuine and you care about your trade, and you care about your audience and you care about bringing value to the table. And affiliate marketing is a small component to a bigger brand.

So, here are my three big takeaways about affiliate marketing, and how to help you build passive income through it. Number one, you must be willing to create content for years before you see a dime from it. This is my ninth year on YouTube! I created my Website nine years ago. It was only two years ago that I saw my first reasonable year of revenue from YouTube. I’ve been making revenue from YouTube for several years, but it’s been a laughable amount. It was not until last year that I went, “Whoa, this is actually really starting to take off!” Year seven of my YouTube website! And of course, I wasn’t taking this extremely seriously for all nine years. I would say I’ve been pursuing YouTube seriously for about four years.

So, within this four years, it took me two years to really build up, to where I was making respectable passive income through affiliate marketing. Number two, you must be willing to put the interests of your audience first, even if that means severing a relationship with a brand or saying, “You know what, brand A gives me a better payout, but brand B is the better service, so I’m promoting brand B.” Let me tell you, that is a thing! You will face situations where maybe you’re looking at three different brands, and brand A will give you a really nice incentive. They’ll say, “Hey, we’ll give you $500 a sale.” Trust me, that’s ridiculous. I mean, not saying it doesn’t exist in the affiliate world, but these are just pretend numbers. Brand A says,” Hey, we’ll give you $500 a sale,” but the product’s a little bit wonky. Brand B over here is more reliable or better or shinier: there’s just something better about brand B ; I’ll tell you, it’s real. This really happens in the affiliate marketing world. And you have to have integrity and say, “. I don’t care that I could make 5 times the revenue with brand A,” because, trust me, you don’t want to promote something that you aren’t 100% confident in, and you don’t believe in. And number three, you must make it your goal to provide value out of free content, your viewer should just be able to click your content, watch it or read it, and say, “That was great, I love it,” and walk away and you got nothing from it, and they’re happy. Why? Because they just contributed to your metrics, which is going to push that piece of content to the next person, and the next person and the next person and you’re building trust at the same time.

Someone may watch you for six months or read your blog for a year, before they ever click a link and you ever make money. But remember that these are people watching your content. They’re not numbers, they’re people. And they’re watching your content because they’re trying to learn something. So, educate them, help them and don’t just be all about making the sale. This is why I love comparison articles on my website, because I can look at 5 or 10 different companies that do the same thing, and have a blast comparing them objectively. I can be brutally honest and I could dig through 5 different web hosting companies, or 5 different VPNs and just put them head to head in a battle, have so much fun with the research and get to do that and just play around and do what I love. And at the end, I will make money no matter what: because all 5 companies offer an affiliate program.

So, how I built my passive income was through being consistent on YouTube, not giving up, aiming for search, playing the SEO game. Watch Roberto Blake’s website on YouTube, if you don’t know him. He’ll tell you everything you need to know about affiliate marketing, and SEO and passive income: Great website. I learned a lot from him. But really, again, it is a long-term game. You have to be committed to it, and you have to build something more than affiliate marketing. Affiliate Marketing is a component of a business. It’s not the entire business. So, what do you think about affiliate marketing? I’d love to know your thoughts in the comments down below, and if you like this article, do be sure to hit that subscribe button, and click the bell so you don’t miss when I release new articles. With that said, I will catch you guys next time.

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