How to do a Content Marketing PlanMarch 31 2017 31 Mar 2017 8 min. read
Affiliate marketing works best when you can spread your message as far and wide as possible. In order to manage this, you need to not only have a content strategy (what content you will produce, how, when and why), but also a content marketing strategy. Below we look at how to do a content marketing strategy, but also why you need one if you're to conquer the world of affiliate marketing.
What is Content Marketing?
Content marketing has been defined as follows:
"a type of marketing that involves the creation and sharing of online material (such as videos, blogs, and social media posts) that does not explicitly promote a brand but is intended to stimulate interest in its products or services."
This means content marketing is different to pure hard-sell advertising, and rather than simply operating on a transactional basis, it works on the principle of stimulating interest in you and your brand.
Why Content Marketing?
One of the most common mistakes affiliate marketers can make is to assume that good content, and good affiliate deals, will draw in the interest you need to make your business viable.
You don't just need those things - though they are definitely essentials - you also need to generate regular interest in your work, because that is what will ensure that people keep coming to check on your affiliate programs.
You're not selling goods or services, you're creating the desire for people to invest in them at a later date. Think of it like a crop: you might want instant growth, but in reality you need to spread the seed for things to work out.
Now that we've looked at the reasons why you should spend time focusing on content marketing, let's investigate how to put together a content marketing plan for your affiliate business.
How To Do a Content Marketing Strategy
The first thing to say is, just as there are many different kinds of affiliate business, so each one will need a different content marketing strategy. A poker-players' tips and tricks blog is different from a site revealing new casino games, or one with a focus on stock market trading. For each of these different sites, the content marketing approach will have to be altered to reflect the kind of person who will be using them - but we'll come to that.
What Do You Want to Do?
In order to stay focused, it's crucial you analyze what you want to get from your affiliate site, because this will determine what kind of content marketing is needed. For example, if your aim sign-ups (as with a CPA campaign)? Or is it sustained interest in an affiliate program (as with revenue share deals)?
If it is the latter, you will need to craft a long-term content marketing campaign that keeps people coming back to your site. A newsletter is one good example of content marketing - provided the users open it. To do this, they need to know the information within will be up-to-date, interesting and informative. It's the same with articles and stories.
With CPA deals, you can afford to be a bit more short-term about your content marketing. In this case, you might want to put the deal available to users as the top item in the content, explaining clearly what it is that they will get from being associated with that site if they sign up. Make your content more openly promotional for CPA programs.
Who Do You Want To Attract?
Who do you believe should be interested in your programs? Who is coming to your site? Who do you WANT to come to your site? Identify a persona for the kind of person you believe would get a benefit from what you're promoting, and tailor the content marketing around them.
If you already have a userbase, are you satisfied with keeping that group of people loyal to you? It's more likely that, in order to make more money, you'll have to find more users from somewhere - otherwise why are you doing content marketing in the first place? Identify the new people you want to attract, and build your work on content around them.
Do Quality Checks on Existing Content
It's not just important to have a plan for future work - you also need to look back through the posts and articles that are already on your affiliate marketing site. Do they reflect the persona or personas you want to attract to the site? Are they up-to-date in what they say?
If your current content is correct in what it says about the programs you're currently interested in promoting, the next step is to optimize it. Make sure it's SEO-optimized, and also that it's easy-to-read and attractive to the eye. Don't be afraid to use images to break up long blocks of text. Soon you'll have a site that sells perfectly your affiliate programs.
Build a Bank of Evergreen Content
Evergreen content is any article or blog post that is written so that it doesn't ever go out of date, or so that only minimal changes are required in order to keep it up-to-date. The idea with evergreen content is to provide something that can be shared on social media easily, no matter how old it is, and something that ranks highly on search engines because it is popular over a long length of time and is seen by search algorithms as being of a high quality.
If you want a specific example of what we mean by evergreen content, this and this are articles that we think will stand the test of time. It may be that the facts within change, but it is not a labor-intensive process to update it. Build up a bank of this evergreen content on your site, and you future-proof yourself, also giving a whole raft of reliable places from which users can locate your affiliate programs.
Check the Competition
Last but not least, you should be looking at what your rivals in the affiliate marketing world are doing to attract new and existing users to their site and their programs. Can you adopt any of their processes and use them yourself? Are they more effective than you? Never rest, never settle, get a content marketing plan that works, and you'll make a good living out of affiliate marketing.
Poker, Casino, Sports, Trading, Lottery, Bingo and more: whether you want to promote on your site, Online Affiliate World has got you covered.