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6 Down And Dirty Ways to Find High-Quality Affiliates

Affiliate programs allow retailers to earn revenue while independent affiliate marketers perform the marketing operations.

However, an affiliate program is only as good as the marketers that are recruited.

That’s why it’s crucial for affiliate managers or dedicated affiliate recruiter to learn recruitment strategies that leads them towards high-quality, tenacious marketers who can earn for the brand.

Below are six down-and-dirty strategies that can be put to use, immediately:

#1. Social Media

Here’s a way to kill two birds with one stone: Start filling your social media feeds with different types of content beyond begging followers to purchase your products! Go a step further by encouraging your followers and fans to earn money by signing up for your affiliate program.

What better way to recruit the right types of affiliates than reaching out to those who are already familiar and interested in your products?

#2. Search Engines

When in doubt, Google it! That seems to be the way of things for all aspects of life in 2015, and head-hunting for affiliate marketers is no different.

Simply plug in terms such as ‘affiliate marketer’, ‘affiliate marketing forums’, or ‘affiliate marketing groups‘. Then, throw in an industry-specific keyword or two, and your on your way to finding potential new marketers. Just keep in mind that just because a marketer belongs to a group doesn’t mean that they are of high-quality.

You’ll want to have someone assigned to signing up for group and forum accounts. That person will then be able to feel out those who show serious marketing potential from the tire-kickers.

If you stumble upon a privately-owned blog such as a review site, then there’s a very good chance that the blogger is a great target for your needs. Affiliate marketers worth their salt understand that at some point, they’ll need to create well-maintained online properties. They’ll also go out of their way to increase their subscriber audience, while promoting site visitor engagement.

In fact, there are many mid-level and super affiliates who have branded their sites or themselves. It would be in your marketing team’s best interest to reach out to these industrious affiliate bloggers.

#3. Satisfied Customers

Sometimes, the answer to an issue is so obvious, we’re prone to overlook it. Why wouldn’t your marketing team recruit high-quality affiliate marketers from their pool of satisfied customers?

Let’s take a look at a gluten-free cookbook that is being sold on Amazon. There are currently 74 5-star ratings for the book, and there are 49 4-star ratings for the same book. There’s a section for satisfied customers to leave their input about the book, along with a section to reply to their comments.

If you were the book’s author, and if you wanted to encourage your book’s fans to become Amazon affiliates so that they could promote your book, then wouldn’t it make sense to reach out to the 123 (as of this publication) satisfied customers, asking them to sign up for an affiliate account?

Remember the last tip about using search engines to find independent marketers? It’s your best friend, and you can also use it to find product review sites. You can even scour e-commerce sites and look for thoughtful review comments.

Think of how much easier it would be to convince an already-satisfied customer to promote your product, while earning a bit of money in the process.

#4. Email Marketing

There are very few brands nowadays that don’t use some form of email marketing. But, instead of asking your email subscribers to spend their money, why not ask your some of your subscribers to start earning money with your brand?

You do this when you utilize the email marketing resources that you’re already using to market your products. In the same way, you can market your affiliate program.

Here’s the upside: Shoppers who take the time to subscribe to your brand’s email media have clearly shown an interest in getting to know your brand. They want to read your marketing content.

A person like this is an informed and educated shopper. These are the qualities that you want to see in your motivated, high-quality affiliates.

Here’s a great example from daily email newsletter, The Skimm, sent to people who have consistently opened their emails for 8 weeks. Although they don’t offer to pay affiliates, this might give you an idea to get started.


#5. Social Media Groups

There are groups of all sorts located on Facebook. Twitter features weekly chats and meet-ups featuring group hashtags. There’s no reason why an affiliate manager or a dedicated affiliate recruiter can’t join in on the conversation.

What’s more, the affiliate recruiter can coordinate with the group leaders and schedule to lead a social media discussion about their brand’s products and services. Then, after leading a discussion that’s designed to identify and funnel high-quality affiliates, the recruiter should render a call-to-action that’s designed to acquire more independent marketers on the books.

#6. Post Cards

Using snail-mail in 2015 might seem hopelessly passe, but there’s a reason why direct mail pieces, coupons, and print ads are still being sent in the mail: It’s because snail-mail still works! 

While your marketing team might not want to dedicate huge sums of money into having post cards produced, they can be useful. People like receiving important information that they can touch and hold in their hands.

These are just six ideas to get you on your way, if you’re trying to replace your affiliate marketing dead-weight with a team of affiliates who care about your brand and want to earn money.

Look out later this week for 3 more down and dirty recruiting strategies, along with implementation tips.

Terri is a content marketing storyteller and strategist. She teaches marketing and entrepreneurship through stories for marketers of all stripes. Her specialty is creating narrative and she writes essays and memoir in her spare time.

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