Hey guys, in these series of posts, I wanted to start discussing information on the internet for affiliates.
Not all information is useful information.
Different facts can make certain types of information valuable to somebody.
The information that I give might not be useful for certain types of people.
So, to start this series of posts, I am going to look at an article published by the content marketing god, Neil Patel.
Make sure to read this till the end to get some actionable tips that I have used to grow niche sites.
Disclaimer: I know that looking at one article may not be enough to say if somebody's advice is useful, however, to save time I will only be doing one article per person.
If you'd like me to go through another article from a previous blog, comment their name and post title below.
Who is Neil Patel and What Does He Do?
For those of you who have never heard of Neil Patel, he is an entrepreneur who runs neilpatel.com.
He has created several 7-figure businesses and was recognized by Obama to be one of the top 100 entrepreneurs under 30.
Some businesses that he has created (or has been the figurehead for) are Kissmetrics (which he has recently merged with neilpatel.com).
Crazyegg, which is an A/B testing platform that you can use to help increase conversions.
Lastly, he created QuickSprout, which helps you learn how to grow your traffic, improve the quality of your site and increase conversions - similar to Affiliate Triggers.
Most of his time (from what I am aware of) is spent on his personal brand and his agency.
He publishes amazing content, whether it’s written, audio, or video about online marketing (mostly content marketing).
Now that you know about Neil, let’s talk about some of his content and whether or not I think that his advice is useful for you (affiliate marketers).
Is This Helpful for Affiliates?
How this series is going to work is that I am going to be dissecting a single piece of content from the person’s site.
I'll be discussing which parts I think you should listen to, and which you should ignore.
At the end of these articles, I will be giving you some extra actionable tips and some other blogs you can read to get information that I either haven’t talked about yet or don’t plan on creating a resource page.
For example, topics that I wouldn’t be able to give you fantastic advice.
If I Had to Start a Blog From Scratch
This blog is one of Neil’s more recent publications, and it has already had many eyes on it gaining over 200 comments very quickly (at the time of writing this post).
However, is the advice given actual useful for affiliate marketers?
Let’s find out.
What is The Goal of This Article?
The primary goal for this article is to teach people who either already have a blog or is planning on making one what he would do if he had to restart his blog from the beginning.
Okay, great but what does that mean for you?
Well it’s going to be quite difficult for you to succeed in affiliate marketing if you don’t create useful content.
Now, considering that Neil is one of the best content marketers out there, I am sure that you’d want to listen to his advice.
So let’s break down a few of his main points and talk about how you can apply them to your website.
Point 1: Pick a big enough niche
This tip is pretty basic, and unless you’re a newbie you should already know this, but it’s still good advice.
It’s always best to start small and scale your business over time.
For example, if you liked fitness and wanted to set up a blog around that, it’s best to dig into that topic a little.
Ask yourself questions like:
One thing that Neil could have mentioned but didn’t here is keyword research.
He did mention to use Google Trends, but that’s not enough if you’re looking for a niche.
The first thing that I will recommend for you is to learn how to do keyword research before you even start your website.
Keyword research isn’t just looking in a keyword tool (for example longtail pro) and seeing how many searches a keyword gets each month.
Whenever I research for keywords, I like to qualify those keywords as well, and by doing that, I can find out quite a lot of information about the people who would search for that keyword.
Also, that information can help you answer the second and third question above.
To cut this short, yes you should be looking for a niche that isn’t too big (thus drowning you out from the beginning) or too small (which eliminates the possibility to grow).
However, you need to do more research into it than just looking at Google Trends.
An example of this would be my blog.
The niche of my blog isn’t too big (like Digital marketing), but isn’t too small that nobody cares about it.
People care about affiliate marketing and more importantly, people want actionable tips that can help them grow their affiliate business (which is what I provide).
Actionable Tip: Something I like to do when choosing a niche is to create a tagline.
By having a unique tagline, you can instantly show people what you offer and if it’s for them.
Using our example, your niche could be plant-based supplements.
So, your tagline could be “Boosting your cardio performance in the gym using plant-based supplements.”
Notice how that tagline answers all three questions that I mentioned above?
Point 2: Don’t stick with one platform
Now I am going to say something that is true, but many marketers wouldn’t tell you.
Clearly, I don’t have a big following on social media at the moment.
In fact, at the moment, I don’t have a following on social media.
I completely agree with Neil’s advice here except I would say to focus on 3 platforms at most at the beginning.
You can take that however you’d like considering that Neil has a much bigger following that I do.
Point 4: Blogging is both about “you” and “I”
This tip is one of the best content creation advice that anybody content marketer could ever give you.
When it comes to your marketing efforts, you always need to look at your campaigns and think about how you would react to it.
If the piece of content that you read doesn’t connect with you, then you’ll most likely leave.
That’s why most people tend to skim through content.
They want to quickly see if your piece of content will connect with them (basically if it can solve their problem).
So, to get more eyes on your content, you’ll want to make your content feel like a conversation between you and your readers.
Firstly, you’ll want to quickly discuss the main problem that people looking for this type of product would have.
For example, if our product review were about an email marketing tool (ConvertKit).
The primary pain point for email marketers would be not having enough subscribers.
This section should always be at the start of your review so that most of your readers can instantly relate to you and understand that this product could potentially fix that problem.
Next, you’ll want to talk about the main benefit that the product gives to that type of user.
By quickly getting into the main benefits of the product your reviewing, it gives the user 3 options:
- 1Click your affiliate link to buy the product straight away.
- 2Continue reading to learn even more and maybe ask questions.
- 3Leave because it’s not the solution they had in mind.
For example, the main benefit of ConvertKit for people with a low amount of subscribers would be easy-to-follow sequences, well designed opt-in forms, and the ability to tag (and then segment) users based on their activity.
Which would help them with growing and scaling their list.
If I wanted a solution that was free to use (like MailChimp), I would instantly leave the review about ConvertKit.
Since if it was free to use, that would be one of the main benefits.
Lastly, you’ll want to either share your experiences with the tool or give some quick tutorials using the tool.
If people can get a little preview of the backend of the tool, they won’t feel as if they’re being blocked by a purchase page which will likely get them to make a quicker decision.
For example, you could create a video showcasing how to use the product for a specific purpose.
Remember, just like Neil said, make sure to include “You’s” and “I’s.”
Point 9: You have to produce quality and quantity
For this tip, I am going to base my answer on whether you should do this or not on my own experiences and what I have seen work for others.
I am sure you’ve heard it many times, if your content isn’t good, your site won’t do well.
Which means the quality of your content is important but is the quantity as important?
Neil said that you have to publish high-quality content, consistently, but how consistent do you have to be?
Andy Crestondina (on OrbitMedia) recently published an article where he researched how many blog posts bloggers post each month, and the results might surprise you.
Out of the millions of bloggers worldwide, only 2% of them publish a new blog post every day.
Also, only 21% of them publish new content on a weekly basis.
In addition to that, it takes an average of 3 and a half hours to write a new article in 2018 unlike in 2014, where it only took 2 hours and 24 minutes.
That’s because it takes a lot more to rank on the first page now than it did four years ago.
Brian Dean analyzed 1 million Google search results and found out that the average first-page result had 1,890 words on it.
So, How Consistent Do I Need to Be?
Neil’s right when he says that a blog post could be a hit or a miss.
However, I wouldn’t recommend publishing a ton of content each week like Buzzfeed or The New York Times have to.
Before I tell you how consistently I think you need to publish content, I want to say that I haven’t had time to properly research this myself (however, I plan to very soon).
This answer is purely based on the vast amount of content I have consumed online since 2006 (when I first found YouTube).
Written Content: Anywhere between 4 - 10 posts a month should be fine.
Audio Content: 1 - 7 podcast episodes a week is what people with huge podcasts tend to publish.
Video Content: I would never recommend daily videos unlike with audio content so, I would say the sweet spot is 2 - 4 videos a week.
Social Media Content: It depends on which platforms you use, so I’d recommend looking at this infographic from CoSchedule.
I highly recommend using that as a base for how much content you post.
That way, you can then see what makes you comfortable and allows you to create the highest quality of content.
Point 25: Have multiple monetization strategies
This tip will be the last that I am going to cover for this article and it’s important that I include this one.
I have spoken to many affiliates over the years that have told me that they only have one source of revenue from their sites.
I can’t stress enough how bad that is for your business.
For example, say you make 100% of your money from Amazon, and then Jeff Bezos was to announce that Amazon is closing down tomorrow.
That’s all of your income gone overnight.
That’s why we should be taking a leaf out of the book of successful entrepreneurs and start diversifying our income streams.
There are multiple ways that you can monetize your business.
However, it has to align with your business, and it’s message.
The most common pairing that you’ll see affiliates using is affiliate marketing mixed with Adsense.
If you want to look at some different ways to monetize your blog, you can read this article from Speakerhub.
Should You Read Neil’s Blog if You Want to Become an Affiliate Marketer?
I wanted to look at some more; However, I don’t want these articles to be too long.
It will be a lot better for both of us if I can keep these as short as possible.
However, if you’d like me to break down another article from, Neil, then feel free to comment which blog you’d want me to break down next in the comment section below.
So, should you continue reading Neil Patel’s blog if you’re looking for tips to build your affiliate business?
If you’re looking for actionable tips that are going to help you earn money from your affiliate site, then no I wouldn’t recommend reading his blog.
That makes sense because Neil Patel doesn’t focus on affiliate marketing.
Sure, he made a how-to guide on affiliate marketing, but so have I.
What you should be taking in is his advice on content marketing and just building a personal brand in general.
Unlike three years ago (where you could create a site on howtoraiseapuppy.com and get affiliate sales in 6 months), now you need to stand out from the millions of blogs out there.
So the best way to do that is by building a personal brand.
An example of the type of content that you should be following is “Why Content Marketing Works for Me and Not You.”
Not only does Neil give you concrete reasons as to why content marketing doesn’t work for you, but he also talks about how to start building your community.
What to Take Away
That was quite a lot to take in, and I am sure that you are either a little confused or overwhelmed and people tend to forget the information that they’ve learned in that situation.
So here are the things that you should take away from this article.
- 1Before you finalize a niche, create a tagline that tells people what topics your site covers.
- 2At the start, only choose three different social platforms to help grow your business.
- 3Unless it’s a platform like Twitter, you shouldn’t be promoting your content multiple times a day.
- 4If you want people to trust your affiliate recommendations, make your content feel personal to them.
- 5For any affiliate site, it’s essential to have multiple streams of revenue.
- 6Yes, it would be best if you listened to what Neil has to say, but not all of his advice is geared towards small affiliate sites.
To end of this post, I would like to know:
- 1Who Should I Cover Next?
- 2How Can I Improve This Post?
- 3Do You Agree or Disagree With Me?
You can let me know in the comments below.
I hope that you enjoyed reading (and learned a thing or two) which you can let me know by commenting below.
In addition to that, I would like to know which content creators do you follow to learn more about marketing in general.