It’s possibly the most frequently asked question in affiliate marketing – aside from “How do I get free traffic to my site?” But if you are challenged with discovering your own affiliate niche, or just finding a product to promote then you are not alone because there are thousands of affiliates out there struggling with the same thing. And to answer the question is affiliate marketing saturated? The answer is yes it is saturated, and no it isn’t.
Now with that answer you may ask what the hell am I talking about. But I have the benefit of viewing affiliate marketing from both sides of the street, because I work as an affiliate marketer and I also work as an affiliate manager (I highly recommend it, you’ll learn things about the industry you never knew), but here’s my reasoning behind my answer.
My perspective as an affiliate manager -
As an affiliate manager I review hundreds of affiliate applicants per week and a great number of those applicants are rejected for various reasons, but in general they are not a good match for the affiliate program, or because their website adds absolutely no value or unique significance. In other words, they might be among the dime-a-dozen publishers with the same old saturated approach, and they are never going to be a successful affiliate.
Now many of the publishers I do approve operate a range of sites from coupon websites, community websites, directories, product review sites, bloggers, etc. And these publishers range from the top performing coupon affiliates to the beginner content affiliate who is willing to work hard but still at the bottom of the learning curve. But very rarely do I ever see affiliate applicants who understands how to take advantage of the opportunities that are just sitting there, waiting to be exploited, by only him.
My perspective as an affiliate -
As as affiliate I’m so obsessed with affiliate marketing that I can’t go shopping without triggering my marketing awareness. Generally a purchase on Amazon.com often leads to a substantial amount of time doing keyword research on a particular product I saw. And a shopping trip often leads to observations of pricing and how I could reach consumers if I have a better offer. But as I discover these opportunities I’ve learned how to just let them go because I can’t possibly engage in the untapped affiliate marketing opportunities that are sitting there for the picking [low hanging fruit].
So my point is this. There are a lot of affiliates saturating certain sectors of the industry, such as the coupon sector. But I also know from experience there are a lot of affiliate managers out there who are desperate to have fresh, creative affiliates on-board their programs.
In short, there are thousands, or maybe tens of thousands of affiliates out there but there are not enough quality affiliates to satisfy the affiliate marketing demand. Here are some suggestions that will help you learn to identify and capture low hanging fruit opportunities that other affiliates don’t recognize or are too lazy to capture.
- Shut off the laptop, get off the couch and experience the lifestyle. For example, if you want to promote a mixed martial arts affiliate program then consider joining a martial arts club, and by becoming experienced in Muy Thai or BJJ you will have inside insight that other affiliates don’t have, and this will provide you opportunity to become a really great content affiliate, and content affiliates have the most opportunity, in my opinion.
- Write with intent, be a true resource. While you might enjoy blogging about the latest UFC fight, or what Chuck Liddell is up to these days, you will not capture the audience you want but will instead capture the audience that wants to know what’s going on with UFC and Chuck Liddell. Instead write your content for the consumer. If you are taking Muy Thai then you probably purchased your own shin guards. Is there demand for shin guards? Go and see. If you decide there is enough demand then start planning your shin guard product review.
- Provide unique content. I know, you are sick of hearing about unique content because nobody ever discusses what unique content actually is. Basically unique content is what you get when you go out of your way to produce your content. Use plenty of text in your own voice, based on your own experience. Include photos of yourself executing a kick with your new shin guards. Shoot a video of how to choose your shin guards and how to wear them properly. Some of the most impressive affiliates are using video. While I don’t think podcasting is ubiquitous with the average Internet user it is worth a try if it interests you.
- Build product review sites. This topic deserves a post unto itself but I’d like to mention it here because there are not enough quality product review sites to satisfy demand. Some of the most consistently earning affiliates in my programs have product review sites, but there are very few of them. Now I don’t mean a blog with some Text Broker content, a few images and affiliate links. A product review site should have many of the elements mentioned in #3. It could be a review of a range of martial arts items like Taekwondo weapons, or a single item like a comprehensive review of the most popular Karate uniforms. Obviously there are some challenges such as cost of the items, but you’ll need to adjust your approach to your own situation and resources.
With more merchants joining affiliate program than ever before I can testify that there is a lot of opportunity for affiliates, and I think opportunities are on the increase. But in today’s competitive industry affiliates have to work smarter to reap the rewards.
If you are interested in joining a martial arts affiliate program consider joining Karate Joe’s affiliate program on Shareasale. You can also contact me for more information regarding the Karate Joe’s program.