Imagine just traveling the world while staying in luxury villas in the Maldives while working from your laptop. It’s all possible with affiliate marketing on Instagram!
Affiliate marketing is an attractive way for digital nomads to start their online business because it has low entry barriers. Starting an Instagram affiliate marketing page doesn’t require a lot of capital, nor experience, to get started. You don’t need to create a product or service and deal with customer support and other third party members when it comes to affiliate marketing.
Below is a detailed approach to getting started making money with Instagram affiliate marketing and proven tips and strategies that we’ve learned along the way since becoming a full-time digital nomad.
What is Instagram Affiliate Marketing?
Affiliate marketing is an online business model of earning a commission by promoting somebody’s products or services on Instagram.
You would first need to sign up for an affiliate program to receive a unique, affiliate link that tracks all your sales and commission. Although the affiliate programs are free for people to sign up, there is an application process and review before you get approved.
Signing up for these programs is free.
To earn a commission with affiliate marketing on Instagram, people would have to purchase the product or service you are promoting from your unique affiliate link.
The affiliate links are unique to you and you only. These links contain the affiliate ID used by the affiliate programs to track if the sales are coming from you.
Instagram Affiliate Programs To Join
Before you launch your online business and start making money on Instagram, you would first need to sign up for an affiliate program. We mentioned earlier that signing up for an affiliate program is free.
Although every big business and company has an affiliate program, below is a list of standard affiliate programs popular among many digital nomads.
INSTAGRAM AFFILIATE PROGRAM #1: ClickBank
Clickbank is one of the preferred affiliate programs today by digital nomads, with over six million clients worldwide. With that number of a portfolio of clients, you won’t have a problem finding a product to promote.
INSTAGRAM AFFILIATE PROGRAM #2: MaxBounty
MaxBounty is also a popular affiliate program for digital nomads. The network has thousands of clients, with products from virtually any Instagram niche you can think that you can promote on Instagram.
INSTAGRAM AFFILIATE PROGRAM #3: Amazon affiliate
Amazon affiliate programs are quite easy to apply to, with instant approval upon sending your application. Affiliate marketers love Amazon’s affiliate program due to millions of products you can promote, from all different niches. Amazon is also an established brand that makes it easier for people to trust and buy.
INSTAGRAM AFFILIATE PROGRAM #4: CJ Affiliate
CJ Affiliate is the world’s most extensive affiliate network, with products and services that you may not find on ClickBank and MaxBounty, as an example.
INSTAGRAM AFFILIATE PROGRAM #5: Liketoknowit
Liketowknowit is a shopping service that is popular among fashion and lifestyle influencers on Instagram. Influencers would typically post wearing their favorite outfit, with a link to a discounted price of the exact outfit available on Liketoknowit for their sponsored post.
HOW TO USE AFFILIATE MARKETING ON INSTAGRAM
Instagram affiliate marketing has opened up the doors for digital nomads, brands, and influencers to work in a creative way like never before. It’s now a viable business model where you can curate content focused on an affiliate offer and promote it to your followers.
Since Instagram started in 2010, influencers have flocked to the platform to increase their audience, traffic, followers, and engagement. With 29% of Instagram’s popular content coming from influencers or brand ambassadors, they dominate the game when it comes to user-generated content. With statistics showing that Instagram has over 1 billion users, it is the second on the list of most active users on social media. Considering the mThis isn’t something that should be ignored, especially for brands when looking at Instagram affiliate marketing strategies.
But how does affiliate marketing work on Instagram?
Affiliate marketing enables an influencer to earn a commission on each sale they refer to a brand’s website. The brand needs to be working with an affiliate network to track the purchase correctly. It is mutually beneficial for both brands and influencers to work together to try to maximize sales.
AFFILIATE MARKETING INSTAGRAM TIP #1: Decide on Your Niche
Deciding your niche is the first thing you do before you launch your Instagram affiliate marketing account.
By picking your niche first, it allows you to organize and focus your content around your niche and know which products or services you are going to promote.
AFFILIATE MARKETING INSTAGRAM TIP #2: Always mention within your posts to click the link in your bio!
Remember that to get a commission through affiliate marketing on Instagram; people would need to click and purchase it from your link. So don’t forget to post links to your landing pages and websites within your Instagram stories.
The number one mistake for people (influencers included) that they don’t have a CLEAR call-to-action to their audience. They post a picture or a video without letting their audience know what to do afterward. Remember, put the link in your bio and tell your audience to “click the link in your bio” for every post, or “swipe up” if you are posting on Instagram stories.
Remember that you DON’T need thousands of followers to be able to do that. The strategy I used, in the beginning, to get clicks on my post is to search up to ten hashtags in my niche and engage with the content.
Liking and commenting on the post gives your profile the chance to discover other people who are following those popular hashtags.
AFFILIATE MARKETING INSTAGRAM TIP #3: Sign up to as many affiliate networks as reasonably possible to give yourself a wide choice of offers.
Signing up for affiliate networks is free and easy. It will give you access to many different affiliates offers that you can promote on Instagram from a wide variety of niche.
Remember that some affiliate networks may offer the same affiliate offer, but may have a different commission from its competitors. So signing up for different affiliate networks gives you more flexibility to switch your offers, especially if one pays more commission more than the other.
AFFILIATE MARKETING INSTAGRAM TIP #4: Spend a couple of days spying on your competitors in your niche
Take a look at other influencers in your niche, or other digital nomads promoting the same affiliate offer, to see how people are engaging with their content. Make your decision if it’s something you want to promote on Instagram once you have a general feel on how people are reacting and engaging on the affiliate offer.
AFFILIATE MARKETING INSTAGRAM TIP #5: Research each offer before you begin developing angles on pitching your offer.
Learn more about your affiliate offer and what type of audience would be interested in it. Having this information would help you in positioning your content.
AFFILIATE MARKETING INSTAGRAM TIP #6: For each offer you choose, develop 2-4 different angles.
Different angles to promote your affiliate offer are part of the creative aspect of Instagram affiliate marketing. Come up with different captions, images, or videos, to present your affiliate offers to your audience.
AFFILIATE MARKETING INSTAGRAM TIP #7: Know when to pick a new offer.
If you don’t have any success with an offer after four angles maximum, move on to a new offer. There is no point in trying to creating content on Instagram for an offer that doesn’t convert to a sale.
AFFILIATE MARKETING INSTAGRAM TIP #8: Post valuable content to your followers consistently.
Instagram affiliate marketing is useful if you post valuable content to your followers.
Valuable and engaging content will be different in each niche, but a good rule of thumb is to post inspirational, helpful, informative, or motivational pictures and videos at least once a day. If you find it challenging to come with ideas on what to post, take a look at the content of other influencers’ in your niche to get some ideas for your own.
Although researching your competitor’s content on Instagram is helpful, it is important to keep your content unique and original. Just remember to keep the authenticity in your content to avoid sounding like a car sales man.
Your goal is to get traffic and people to click the links in your bio. But it’s important to keep in mind not to make your post about an affiliate offer or a link, all you’re going to do is annoy people, and ultimately lose followers.
I’ve found that one promotional post per week is the sweet spot to keep your followers engaged, but make sure that you have an affiliate offer on Instagram.
AFFILIATE MARKETING INSTAGRAM TIP #9: Boost Sales with Instagram for Business
Switching your account into a business account will boost your Instagram affiliate marketing online business.
We all know by now that Instagram has made it possible to switch between your personal and business accounts.
Setting up a business profile has many advantages. A business profile allows you to get access to real-time analytics and view the engagement metrics on particular posts. In turn, users can reach out to you by tapping the contact button and taking a specific action afterward.
Instagram launched a new option for business accounts in 2016. Instagram for Business places your promoted product in front of your target audience in a few simple steps. Create an eye-catching and compelling post featuring your affiliate offer. Identify your target audience, budget, promotional content, CTA (call-to-action), and promotion duration.
Once it’s done, you will see the “Promote” button under your post and start running your ad on Instagram!
AFFILIATE MARKETING INSTAGRAM TIP #10: Use Hashtags to Boost Your Engagement
Like it or not, using hashtags can make a difference in getting your content discovered. Remember, if nobody sees your content, you are not driving clicks to your Instagram affiliate marketing business.
Hashtags improve the discoverability of posts and drive likes and comments. The key point here is relevance. Use the hashtags that correspond to your Instagram niche.
Do a through research and list the tags your competitors use in their content. If possible, incorporate some branded hashtags to raise awareness, like the name of the promoted product or any other related tag. Let your creativity flow. Instagram allows the use of hashtags up to 30 per post, but be careful not to go overboard. The optimal number of hashtags for maximum engagement is 11.
AFFILIATE MARKETING INSTAGRAM TIP #11: CONSIDER PROMOTING AFFILIATE MARKETING ON FACEBOOK
Although Instagram and Facebook are from the same company, Facebook still has over 1 billion more active users than Instagram, according to a recent report.
That means you can potentially reach more people to drive clicks to your Instagram affiliate marketing business, even on Facebook.
Facebook is the leader as far as social media networks go, with more than two billion people worldwide. The flow of information surging through Facebook every day is a hive of potential that you, as an affiliate marketer, need to tap into to spread awareness of your affiliate site or offers.
AFFILIATE MARKETING INSTAGRAM TIP #12: Boost your Organic Posting
Below are a few ways you can improve your organic posting on Instagram without having to go the paid advertising route.
1. Encourage friends and family to share your post through their stories. Using this strategy on a rare occasion to promote a good piece of content or a special deal on your Instagram affiliate marketing offer is exceptional. I recommend only doing this strategy around the holidays and only when the item in question is on sale—monitor sales on Amazon to best optimize your commission sales.
2. Post an affiliate link on pages or content you’ve created for specific deals. One of the most common strategies of using affiliate marketing on Instagram is a generalized “Great Deals” sort of post.
AFFILIATE MARKETING INSTAGRAM TIP #13: Use Instagram Ads
We talked quite a bit of Instagram ads on this post because frankly, paid ads are the way to go. I talk about the organic options above because most people don’t want to spend money in the beginning, simply because of the risk of not getting their return of investment immediately. You do need something of an active presence organically before you can make optimal use of ads.
However, when using Instagram ads, don’t send people directly to your affiliate offer because you can get banned. Instead, send them to your landing page and from them send them to the affiliate offer.
AFFILIATE MARKETING INSTAGRAM TIP #14: Remember that affiliate marketing income fluctuates
Don’t immediately quit your job after you earn you first three or four figure day! Think stability and long-haul.
Treating affiliate marketing on Instagram is a marathon effort – not a quick sprint.
When you’re getting started, master the very basics and run your first couple of campaigns, you must have an idea of the big picture.
AFFILIATE MARKETING ON INSTAGRAM FINAL STRATEGIES
Three things will make or break each Instagram affiliate marketing campaign you run.
It doesn’t mean they’re the only things you need to get right. You’ll still need excellent banners, bids, landing pages, and so on to earn a profit from your campaign.
But if you don’t have these three essential things nailed, it doesn’t matter how brilliant your Instagram posts or landing pages are – you still won’t see positive ROI (Return On Investment).
Experienced affiliate marketers on Instagram believe that once you know what you’re doing, these three key components, in combination, are responsible for about 70% of your campaigns’ success.
Instagram Affiliate Marketing Strategy #15 – Master the Instagram Traffic Source
Fortunately, we can choose Instagram as a traffic source straight away.
But as mentioned beforehand, we must choose ONE and master it before trying out other traffic sources.
Over time, you’ll probably want to experiment with other traffic sources to send clicks to your affiliate marketing posts. However, when you’re getting started, focus on one traffic source (in this case, Instagram) to better understand how your followers respond and engage to your content.
Instagram Affiliate Marketing Strategy #16 – The affiliate offer
The most important thing to do in your early affiliate career is to find a good offer.
It would be reasonably easy to do if you have a niche and Instagram content that revolves around affiliate offers.
The best approach is to test a lot of affiliate offers, and alternate between testing recommended offers with great feedback.
Instagram Affiliate Marketing Strategy #17: Angle
The angle is the unique spin that separates your campaign from everyone else’s. It’s the benefit you show or the story you tell that makes your offer appealing.
For example, an obvious angle for a battery saver mobile app is to ask users if they’re tired of their battery running down. That might work, but users will have seen it many times before.
A less obvious angle may work better – for example, choosing a specific situation where a battery running down is terrible. “Don’t Lose Power Just As Your Tinder Chat Starts” is likely to stand out. It might work, it might not – but it means that your campaign is different.