If you’re reading this, chances are you’re an affiliate marketing scholar and know how to successfully incorporate this monetization channel into your business.

Even the scholarly-est of scholars know there’s always more to learn, so today we’re diving into how you can improve your approach to promoting affiliate offers.

Do This First If Your List Is Fresh Outta The Oven

Promoting affiliate offers ain’t gonna get get you anywhere if you first don’t have:

  • A “warmed up” IP address and domain
  • A good amount of clicks generated per promotion

Fortunately, warming up the list with highly-engaging content should only take a couple weeks if your engagement metrics are looking solid out of the gate. Our internal benchmarks to know when a list we manage is at full strength and ripe for regular affiliate promotion are:

  1. Deliverability over 95%
  2. Open Rate over 25%
  3. Click through rate: varies by list type. If the list consists of third-party video sales letter buyers, we’ll wait for a 2% CTR. In that instance, the contacts may be unfamiliar with the domain and list brand we use. However, for an in-house branded ecommerce list, or a fresh opt-in leads list, your CTR can be exponentially higher.

But what happens if you start warming up some older unengaged data or a new-to-you list, and Google and other ISPs don’t think to highly of you?

How to Prevent a Bad Rep

When you promote any affiliate offer, you are assuming some risk simply by promoting a brand, domain, or offer outside your control. This means you put your reputation with ISPs like Gmail and Verizon/Yahoo on the line. If you aren’t doing the following, you’re taking on way too much risk:

  1. Check your unique affiliate link on major blacklists like Spamhaus or Barracuda. If you send a blacklisted link it will greatly harm your reputation. Promoting just one blacklisted link can destroy your reputation overnight.
  2. Review your complaint rate after promoting an offer. If it’s over 0.1%, seriously consider never promoting it again.
  3. If things are looking dire, tighten the segments you’re emailing for the next couple of weeks. Go with a smaller segment with highly-engaged contacts, like 30 day clickers plus 10 day openers and with time that’ll get you back on the ISPs’ good side.

Bonus Tip for Seasoned Affiliate Marketers…

Too often when an offer in regular rotation goes cold, the advertiser just doesn’t have another top performing email at the ready. But the offer has already proven itself to perform to your list, so it might still have some revenue life left. Instead of throwing in the towel, use ChatGPT to make variations of the current winning creative.

You may want to preface ChatGPT’s persona prior to giving the assignment by asking it to take on the role of a world class email copywriter for [insert your niche here]. Then take the winning email and plug it into ChatGPT with this prompt: “Give me 10 completely different variations with the sole purpose of persuading and convincing readers to purchase. Make it startling, unique, and convincing.”  Chat GPT will work its magic and give you 10 different email creatives to use. Take the 2-3 most compelling variations and can run the prompt again, making adjustments to the assignement. From there, select two assumed frontrunners and run a split test.

Our team has generated millions of dollars a year as affiliates for the last 8 years. Are there any questions you have about affiliate marketing you’d like us to cover? Respond to this email and let us know. We’d love to dive into what matters most to you.