We recently just completed a project that entailed doing a complete website build out for 10 of my students and I have to tell you that the hardest part of that task is coming up with a profitable topic to promote.
Actually “topic” is probably the wrong word and should be replaced with “product” because you want to drill down as far as you can in a niche and focus on promoting a single product.
Now there’s a subjective measurement that you have to apply and that’s the amount of emotional connect you have with the product. You have to have at least a modicum of interest in it. You have to believe you can stand behind it and you have to believe it delivers value. When people pick a product simply because it’s a hot seller and it’s a product that they don’t have any personal interest in, their pages will reflect that lack of interest.
That said, you also have to pick a product that actually has a market. Just because you’re passionate about Guatemalan blanket designs doesn’t mean that there is a large audience that shares your enthusiasm. Of course there’s an easy way to determine the potential interest. If for example you’re thinking about marketing wooden rocking chairs simply load the keyword into the FREE Google Adwords keyword tool and check out the number of local searches.
Where to start
Many of you probably just headed over to Amazon, signed up and then started searching for a product to promote. While that’s not a bad start I’d suggest that there’s a better way.
If you were shopping for an item that cost $100 or more, wouldn’t it be nice to have a friend along who knows everything there is to know about the item? Well in the affiliate business those “friends” are called Affiliate Managers and they can be a fantastic resource…or not.
Affiliate Managers have all the data on a given product that they promote. They know what works, what the typical conversion rate is and what the typical total sale is. This can be invaluable information and can save you tons of time in building your content and targeting your audience.
But like in all professions there are the good and the bad. I’ve had brand name companies be totally nonresponsive when I’ve inquired about their affiliate programs. On the other hand, I know at least a dozen managers who go way out of their way to answer my questions and get me the data I need. This is particularly true with Outsourced Program Managers (OPM) whose job is to run their clients’ affiliate programs.
James Martell has be offering affiliate marketing courses for 10+ years and has been a successful full-time affiliate marketer himself since 1999. James along with his wife Arlene are the hosts of the first EVER and longest running podcast (the “Affiliate Buzz) since 2003. James lives with his wife and their 4 children in White Rock BC, Canada.