How a social media platform can enhance affiliate marketing

Here, we look at social media and affiliate marketing, and how the two can interact in the most effective way for your business.

Affiliate marketing has proved to be one of the most popular ways to monetise income from a web platform due to its relatively straightforward nature and lack of outlays. For anyone with an interest in a particular topic that can be tied in with product demand, there are clear opportunities to sign up to affiliate programmes that have the potential to turn over regular income.

The actual figures that can be generated will vary considerably, and this will never happen overnight. But with a modicum of planning, an affiliate marketer can embark on this type of venture with confidence. By far the most effective way of monetising your site is to tap into your social media outlets.


The scattershot approach is not recommended. When the advertiser forwards you the links to their products they wish you to promote, it would be counter-productive to simply post these across your social media channels. For a start, Facebook is increasingly clamping down on sales-related posts, so these links will not even preview properly. The same can be said for Twitter, where the results will be similarly disappointing. But there are ways to promote your affiliate programme.

The key to achieving a consistent rate of click-throughs to the product pages is to ensure the affiliate links are seamlessly integrated, not simply dropped into web pages. What could be described as raw URL hyperlinks are easy to spot for the initiated, and much as web users can be fickle creatures who will merrily browse through random pages, they will be wary of activating any link that appears sketchy.

Far better to transform them into ‘click-friendly’ redirect links, and one of the most convenient ways to do this is to operate a self-hosted site, using the WordPress platform, which offers plugins to do the redirecting for you.

Concentrate on content

In order to make the most of your social media platform for promoting the products, it’s crucial that you write engaging content. Remember, it’s not just about constantly plugging whatever you’re trying to get people to buy. You need to create a buzz around the products, conveying the sense of them being ‘must have’ items. And the only way you’ll be able to convince potential customers that this is the case is by sharing first-class content on your blog.

So rather than pasting links, think of your business strategy in terms of writing a block of compelling content that will draw-in your readers, and then include a link so that it becomes an organic part of the article.

Incorporate video

While written articles are an excellent way to keep the pot boiling, and even better method to promote your products is to demonstrate them to your audience. Put yourself in your customers’ shoes by buying a sample of the product yourself to test it out. Now you can post a review of the item, either by discussing it in detail for delivery across your social media outlets in podcast format; or even better, by creating a short video extract.

Use the available technology to put together a decent high definition recording of your demo. Now feature your visual review prominently, linking into it from appropriate platforms. If customers can actually see the product in action and listen to your positive comments about the benefits it offers they will become so much more likely to invest in it themselves. Make the most of this type of engagement by ensuring you have channels available to your subscribers, further incentivising them by sending out dedicated newsletters about further product reviews as soon as they are in the pipeline.

Email lists

As time goes on you can keep adding to your list of subscribers. Not only are the customers who appear in this group guaranteed to have an interest in what you are selling – they won’t have been added randomly – you can then use this medium for direct promotion. Include all the relevant details in your email shots. Whatever your niche, from best dating affiliate programme to most recommended games affiliate, your turnover will be boosted. Targeting individual customers in this way, with sleek and well-produced mailshots, will make them feel valued.

Ben Lobel

Delphine Hintz

Ben Lobel was the editor of from 2010 to 2018. He specialises in writing for start-up and scale-up companies in the areas of finance, marketing and HR.

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