Business Overview

Affiliate marketing is the art of turning fame into a business. People who have managed to attract an audience are paid  to endorse related products or services on their public platform. For example, if a popular nutritionist blogger endorses a new line of supplements.

Who is this business right for?

Affiliate marketing is excellent for a passionate person who enjoys being in the public spotlight. They should be good at promoting brands without coming across as a salesperson. They’ll need to be good at handling questions and potential criticisms from both their fans and the media.

What happens during a typical day at an affiliate marketing business?

Affiliate marketers make their name based on a specific talent or niche, so the majority of their time will be spent concentrating on the skills that have initially attracted their audience (e.g., blogging, YouTube videos, etc.). However affiliate marketing may also include the following:

  • Blending product names into their content
  • Updating social media for affiliate purposes
  • Negotiating payment with business partners
  • Finding new affiliate companies to work with  
  • Ensuring legal compliance of all posts

What is the target market?

Companies with a primarily consumer audience are the biggest market for affiliates, but they're certainly not the only option. Political candidates or other celebrity figures may turn to affiliates for endorsement, as will commercial or private entities that may want to boost their reputation to the public.

How does an affiliate marketing business make money?

The most traditional way an affiliate makes money is by receiving a certain commission or fee each time their partner receives a click or sale. For example, if a blogger mentions Product X’s company in a post, and Product X receives 1,000 click-throughs from the blogger's site to theirs, then the blogger will make a certain amount of money off each click. The amount the blogger will make is based on their following and perceived credibility in their niche. However, some affiliate marketers will choose to be paid a flat rate for dropping the name into the post.

What is the growth potential for an affiliate marketing business?

It may be difficult at first to work your name or cause into the public eye. There are a lot of people (both online and off), who are trying to become public personalities in practically every given industry. However, there are also a number of people who eventually drop out of the public eye or move onto more straightforward endorsement deals. This leaves a vacuum for up-and-comers  to edge their way in.