Why You Need An Affiliate Marketing “Go-to-Market” Plan To Succeed
With over 25+ years of corporate experience in launching new propositions into markets with “Go to Market Plans” (GTM), I know first-hand, the power of having clarity through the development and execution of a GTM plan no matter what you are selling.
The thing is, business principles whether in the corporate sector, or in the offline world do not change just because we move to the online world. Business principles and strategies are just as important and can give you the edge in affiliate marketing, because most affiliate marketers do not use these tools and think strategically enough.
Most early entrants into affiliate marketing do not have a deep understanding of how to go about marketing their offering…..how do I know this?, because the questions that posted all around the internet from Quora to Affiliate Facebook groups, shows the general and basic lack of knowledge of what to do.
So, what is an Affiliate Marketing “Go-to-Market” plan?. At a very high-level it will help answer 4 basic questions:
WHO am I selling to?
WHAT am I selling to this niche?
WHERE can I find these prospects?
HOW will I market and sell to this niche?
If you can get complete clarity on these few questions, this will then allow you to build your plan of action, and in doing so will help steer you away from any activity that will not serve you. Instead you will be more focused on the 20% of tasks that will give you 80% of the desired outcomes.
Take my example:
WHO: I am selling to affiliates who are software savvy or at least want to promote online tools to internet marketers
WHAT: My core offering is GrooveFunnels, but to differentiate myself, I added additional offers. I have written an ebook on “How to make $10,000 per month selling marketing software to online marketers”, plus I offer 1 hours coaching and I am currently adding more offers so that I have a differentiated stack of offers that sets me apart from other affiliates competing with me.
WHERE: I am laser sharp focused on attracting my niche market to my YouTube channel
HOW: I will be creating and disseminating video content that serves this market
Through my GTM plan, I absolutely know where I am going to focus what I need to do. For me it’s as simple as spending 80% of my time adding value to this community.
Of course, there is a lot more to a Go-to-Market plan, but I have tried to keep it simple as possible.
If you wanted to, you could also add other questions that could fall into the 4 question categories above, such as:
- WHAT are my objectives in the coming 12 months?
- WHO is my competition & WHAT is their value proposition & HOW does it stack up against mine?
- HOW do I position myself in the marketplace? HOW do I differentiate myself from the competition?
- HOW can I leverage my competitors following?
- HOW will I generate leads (organic or paid advertising)?
- WHAT support will my customers need?
This is not an exhaustive list, but this provides additional ideas of how you as an affiliate marketer should start thinking. If the majority of affiliate marketers are spraying their affiliate links across the internet and praying, you have a massive opportunity in cutting through the noise and growing your affiliate business.
The other day I was contacted by an affiliate marketer on Facebook Messenger and the message thread went something like this (abbreviated version):
Affiliate: Hi, I have seen your posts, can you help me in my affiliate business as I am new to affiliate marketing?
Me: Hi, I’d be happy to help you, is there something specific I can help with?
Affiliate: Where should I post my affiliate links to make sales?
Me: You don’t. What you need to do is to understand who your niche is, where they are, understand their requirements/pains/issues and create original content and deliver that content consistently to them.
Affiliate: I have never created content and don’t know where to start
Me: Start by understanding who you are selling to, hang out where they hang out online, see what kinds of questions they are asking and what they need help with. If you don’t know the answers, use google, read books, watch online videos, do whatever it takes and present the answers in your own original way. In other words, serve your niche and add real perceived value to them.
Affiliate: If I do this are they more likely to buy from me?
Me: Over time if you are consistent and adding value, your niche will get to know, like and trust you, and they will ask for further help if they see you as a specialist in the area they need help in.
Of course, this is just the basics, but many affiliate marketers don’t even think about the basics to lay the foundations to their affiliate business.
In my experience the key to online success is to be laser sharp focused on your target market. You need to be seen and heard by them through creating regular content and posting where your target market resides, whether it’s Facebook groups, Linkedin, Twitter, Youtube, wherever.
So, working through the high-level GTM questions and doing some deep thinking around the questions will help you in the long run.
Once you feel you have a clear idea of who you are selling to and what you are going to sell, it is paramount that you test. Test you offer, test your messaging, test whether your content is really valuable to them or if you’re the only one that thinks it is of any value.
If you feel things are not going your way, take an element of your go to market plan and pivot. What I mean by this is, take your messaging, change it, change your copy on your sales funnel, see if that has any impact.
If not, go back to the original plan but now change the offer, make it bigger, better, bolder. There is no simple answer, but you need to almost become an affiliate marketing detective and figure out what elements of your GTM are not working for you. Look out for the signs from your market and let it steer you in the right direction.
Hi, my name is Suki Singh and am I based in London UK.
I have been in the corporate world for over 25 years, working for large software companies such as Microsoft, and Telcos including Vodafone and Telefonica. In parallel I have ran a handful of online ventures predominately in the affiliate marketing world covering educational toys, software, smart gadgets and also ecommerce stores.
With a MBA and real world online marketing experience I am now 100% focused on building an online brand focused on exclusively helping new affiliate marketers to develop a “Go To Market” plan and build their businesses and drive profitable revenue growth.
I offer Affiliate Marketers simple planning tools to develop a solid Affiliate Marketing “Go-To-Market” (GTM) Plan, so they can be crystal clear on who they are selling to, where their prospects can be found and how to promote to their niche.