Affiliate marketing using Pinterest is not as easy as it sounds.
If you thought you could simply post a pin and change the link to an affiliate link and create passive income, I have news for you, you’re probably not going to make more than a few nickels.
It’s the same with writing a blog article, you can’t just throw 10 affiliate links in your blog post, and hope that someone will start clicking.
There are a few things to take into consideration, and a few rules to follow.
First and foremost, if you have tried using Pinterest for Affiliate Marketing and it hasn't worked for you, start by answering a few questions about yourself and your blog honestly:
Do you have an audience? In other words, how many people are either following you on social media or visiting your blog on a daily basis?
Where is your blog/website traffic coming from? Is it Pinterest? Facebook? Twitter? Organic Google Search? How are people finding and visiting your blog online each day, week, month?
Do you have an email list that you email each time you post a new blog article? If so, how many people are currently on that list?
Now that you have the answers to those questions, consider this:
For the average affiliate sale, it takes about 1,000 clicks to get 1 sale.
GEEZ. Is that really true?
Manage your own expectations about Blog Affiliate Marketing
If you don’t have an audience yet, then scrambling to write blog articles with links to your affiliate products is not going to make you a full time income.
Before you can get hundreds and thousands of clicks, people need to know who you are and be able to trust your recommendations first. That simply won't happen if you only share posts on social media without a big audience, or you only pin your own content.
Pinterest is a content curation platform. That means that people who are searching for a topic don’t want to see just one choice, they want to see everything related to that topic. Here's how content curation works in terms of how you pin your content…
Pinterest is a search engine just like Google.
So think about what you do on Google, you type in a word or phrase and expect Google to search for an answer to your question, and if you only get one choice, its not really what you’re looking for…you want lots of choices.
The reality is when you’re first stating out, you want people to recognize you for one thing that you do best. If you pin about home decor, people don’t want to see SEO or vegetarian recipes, because if you’re an expert at home decor, that’s what you want to be known for.
So how does this translate to your Pinterest profile?
It means I want to see boards and pins organized by topic with lots of different information (not just from you, but from different pinners who have content that compliments yours).
This is why it is recommended that you re-pin other content that is related to your own. Notice how the biggest accounts on Pinterest pin content that is not only their own, but related to their own. Think of it as though you are pinning for your audience (not yourself) because when you are a “business” that's exactly what you're doing…curating content for your audience.
The people who make up the audience on Pinterest are primarily women and they are primarily from the United States, and guess what, they are primarily from educated households.
So while that probably means they have money to spend and they could be a good target customer for whatever you’re offering for sale, it also means that people scrolling through their Pinterest feed are not stupid and therefore they don’t fall for clickbait headlines or offers that are not completely transparent.
Remember, these are educated people, they do their research, if they don’t have a way to qualify that you actually know what you’re talking about, they won’t buy from you.
In other words, they may click on the link and check out what you’re promoting but if they don’t know you or trust you, you’re never going to make an income from them.
So how do you change that?
3 Pinterest Affiliate Marketing Secrets
Here are my best inside secrets that will help you understand how you can get better at affiliate marketing on Pinterest.
Secret #1: Context
Words can make a casual reader open up their wallet and buy something, so writing an honest affiliate marketing review.
Blogging and social media are both forms of online marketing. When you are marketing a product or service that is not your own and was created by someone else, you have the unique ability to influence others perception of that product or service. Is it worth the money? Is it legitimately helpful? Does it provide the solution that it promises to?
I took an online course in 2014 and about a year later, the course creator developed an affiliate program. I wrote an honest review about my experience with that course. Every time people searched for information about it, my post came up organically in a Google search, and I earned a few thousand dollars in affiliate commission. That course has since been discontinued and I took the article down, but writing a review of a course or even software that you use can be an effective way to create a passive income stream.
Instead of just posting an Affiliate Link on your pin, write a blog post and give some context around the reason that you recommend this product or service so highly.
Remember the golden rule, be honest. Share how you personally benefitted from whatever it is that you’re reviewing, and don’t forget that you need to disclose your status as an affiliate (it’s the law!)
Secret #2: Create a Tutorial as an Affiliate Marketer
Another great way to market an affiliate product or service is to create either a blog post or video tutorial that shows people how to use whatever it is that you're recommending. You may have heard of or seen “unboxing” videos on YouTube. This type of “tutorial” works especially well a physical product, when you can actually show people what it looks like (in photos or videos) as well as how to use it. Then, you’ll create a pin that goes directly to that URL.
It's important to leverage the power of YouTube and podcasting for Affiliate Marketing.
If you don’t have much of an audience yet, you can build your network by speaking as a guest on another professionals podcast or YouTube channel. You might even interview the creator of the product or service or interview people who have used and benefited from it on your own podcast or YouTube channel. Just as with guest blogging, this give the host or the interviewee an opportunity to promote it to their audience. Along the same lines, you can also consider making the affiliate a “sponsor” of your show or include an advertisement for the product or service as part of other episodes.
You don’t necessarily have to promote the affiliate offer on the podcast, YouTube video or in the blog post, instead, aim to get the audience to take an action — for example, to join your Facebook group. Then post the affiliate link inside the Facebook Group to an audience of warm leads who already know, like, and trust you.
Obviously you want to be strategic about this, because I’ve also seen people post affiliate links inside other private Facebook Groups that are not their own. This is a big no-no, not only is it bad etiquette, but it may be against that group’s rules. Keep your affiliate links to your own Facebook Group and respect the owners of the groups that are there to support you.
Secret #3: Affiliate Marketing Through Email & Sales Funnels
The secret sauce to making money online, whether it’s selling your own products and/or services or recommending other’s products and services is by using email and sales funnels.
You might think that email is passé, but that couldn’t be further from the truth. In fact, did you know that email marketing has a ROI (return on investment) of 3,800%? (Source)
Yes, it is true. After all, data doesn’t lie, especially online data that can be measured in clicks.
The power is in the email list. While it may seem overwhelming at first, I promise, this is the way you are going to be able to create that coveted passive income stream that you’ve been hoping for.
After starting a blog, beginning to build an email list is the next most logical step toward passive income. It’s not easy to entice people to sign up for yet another email list, so you have to give them some incentive.
You may have heard people talk about “over-delivering” on customer service? Well before someone will trust you, you need to exceed their expectations.
How do you do that?
Online, it happens by giving them an answer to their question, helping them solve a problem, or at the very least, ensuring they make some progress.
What exactly does that look like?
Well, writing a blog post that provides people with the knowledge they need to take the next step of their journey can be extraordinarily helpful.
Think of this blog post..did it answer some of your questions about affiliate marketing? Did I throw in a whole bunch of affiliate links in the hopes that you would click?
Because I’d rather show you that I actually care about helping you understand how to effectively do affiliate marketing on Pinterest so you can move closer to your goals.
On the other hand, if you are genuinely interested in learning more advanced affiliate techniques such as how to create a bridge page, you might decide to you would like a step-by-step video tutorial that shows you how to make money with your affiliate products by using Pinterest. If so, I encourage you to sign up for my Pinterest Marketing MasterClass: Monetization Techniques, it’s free, of course!
But it’s also a way to encourage you to become a subscriber of my email list.
See how that works?
I know that you’ll only subscribe if you actually believe that I’ve given you some helpful information. Otherwise you would just skip over it and not sign up.
So as you can see, when you can enthusiastically and authentically recommend something that will actually help your readers achieve their goals (whether it's your own product or an affiliate product) they will be happy to hear about it!
Now lets get back to the point of this blog post. There are no social media fairies that will pay you to post your affiliate links on Pinterest. So if you want to dive deep into the strategies mentioned above so you can really start increasing your income and your impact, sign up for my Free MasterClass.
Just have a question you want answered instead? Join my Free Facebook Group and just ask. I'll see you there!