YouTube and Affiliate Marketing in 2023? Is it A Perfect Combination, or Just a Bad Idea?
Are YouTube and affiliate marketing a match made in heaven? A few statistics will answer that question well enough:
- More than 2 billion users worldwide
- 120 million active users daily
- Second most visited website on the internet, right behind Google
- 94% of Americans watch YouTube at least once a month
- Around a billion hours of watch time every day
With these numbers, YouTube is easily one of the top platforms for advertisers with such a broad and diverse audience.
What is YouTube affiliate marketing?
To explain what YouTube affiliate marketing is, let’s start with explaining what affiliate marketing is. Affiliate marketing works when you get paid to sell another company’s products or services. Many e-commerce businesses have their affiliate marketing programs which you can sign up for, get your affiliate link which generates a percentage of revenue the company makes from the people you sent to their website via your affiliate link.
Combining affiliate marketing with YouTube, we get YouTube affiliate marketing, who would’ve guessed?
YouTube affiliate marketing is a model where creators generate revenue by placing affiliate links for products or services in the video description or within the annotations of the video.
It works the same as with any other platform, the difference is that on YouTube creators market the products or services in their videos in the form of a review or tutorial. Monetization remains the same, you earn a commission for every purchase or subscription connected with your affiliate link.
Affiliate marketing on YouTube is a great way of providing extra value to your audience while earning revenue at the same time. While YouTube offers various a lot of ways of monetizing your content, affiliate marketing gives you direct control over what products you promote and highlights their positives and negatives in your own way.
How can I Start with YouTube Affiliate Marketing?
- The first step is setting up a YouTube account with monetization enabled. Also, you should pick an area of interest to base your videos around. Then start creating and posting videos.
- Another thing to do before you start uploading videos is to provide YouTube with all the necessary information so they can connect your YouTube channel with a Google Adsense account or another network that works with affiliate marketers.
- Google Adsense allows you to promote the products and services of other companies. As the popularity of your channel will increase, more brands and businesses will allow you to host their advertisements.
What Types Of Videos Generate Affiliate Revenue?
- How-to videos
- These types of videos explain the process of doing something or provide a tutorial. They are often great for incorporating and promoting a product because people want to solve a problem for which they are searching for the tutorial in the first place.
- Unboxing videos
- This a very popular type of video because people get the experience of a first-person view of unboxing a product that they are looking forward to buying or interested in.
- Product review video
- When faced with the decision of buying something or debating which product is the best for them, people often revert to YouTube and search for review videos to help them make a decision.
- Although they require a lot of time and editing skills, people love watching them and rarely skip through the video. It is a great practice to include affiliate links to the gear you are using in your videos, after watching it in action people might come to like some of it and want them themselves.
Pros of YouTube Affiliate Marketing
1. Massive audience
- this is fairly obvious by now and described at the start of this article. with more than 2 billion users, YouTube is one of the best platforms to market affiliate products.
2. High growth
- YouTube’s revenue had grown from 1 billion to 15 billion in the span from 2012 to 2020.
3. Lower competition
- There are still a lot of niches that just don’t have a lot of competition on this platform so you have a lot of room to grow.
4. Mostly unrestricted niches
- Aside from the likes of gambling and adult offers, everything else is on the table to be marketed freely on YouTube.
5. Free Traffic
- The traffic on YouTube is 100% free, unlike Facebook for example.
6. You can build a loyal following
- The “subscribe” option is a free promotion in the way that people will see your videos on their feeds.
7. Mostly easy SEO
- Almost all the videos that pop up from a Google search are from YouTube.
8. Minimal investment
- Most of the time the gear you need is in your hand, your phone. If you see the channel being lucrative, then you can think about upgrading.
Cons of YouTube Affiliate Marketing
1. Video Creation
- This is the basics of YouTube and also the hardest part, the thing that differentiates you from the rest and provides you with a loyal following.
2. The platform is not yours
- Unlike having independent websites, you can get banned on YouTube and lose your account and thus everything you worked towards.
3. Niche – specific challengers
- If you are willing to focus on a specific niche, for example, plumbing, it might be a bit challenging to acquire video material.
4. Linking restrictions
- According to Google: “If the main purpose of your content is to drive people off of YouTube and onto another website, it will likely violate our spam policies”.
5. Swamped niches
- A lot of the easily accessible niches are full of creators and its really hard to stick out so you need to be smart and creative
Try these 7 pro-YouTube affiliate marketing tips
- Eye-catching thumbnails – The thumbnail plays a bigger role than people may think. It is like a book cover, but for YouTube videos. Search what kind of thumbnails your competition is using and start from there.
- Create timestamps – If you make tutorial-like content, be sure to put timestamps in the video, people are watching it hoping to find a short and fast answer.
- Optimize for YouTube search – find keywords that match your video, that will help to send people towards your video. You should try and incorporate the best keywords in the title of the video and also add them to the video description. Remember, YouTube is the second biggest search engine, second to Google!
- Create playlists – group together similar videos in a playlist, that way people will continuously watch all of the videos in the playlist, and more views = more affiliate link clicks!
- YouTube shorts – Affiliates should jump on board these TikTok-like trends and utilize them as they are here to stay. Try and incorporate the best and most interesting features of the product in this vertical, under a 60-second video format and try to make them as fast-paced and as interesting as you can.
- Input YouTube videos in your blog – YouTube and a blog is an awesome combination! If you have a blog, try and put your article in a video format and include it in the article, or record short tutorials related to the article at hand.
- Be transparent – Your audience needs to be clearly informed that you are being paid for the services you’re promoting, otherwise, you may lose their trust and thus lose followers.
Use YouTube in your affiliate marketing strategy
For many YouTubers, affiliate marketing is a great way to earn additional income and also provide additional value to their audience.
Master your niche, scout the competition, find out what it is that people want, and make content based on your research. Optimize your affiliate marketing strategy with this guide and start earning extra money with affiliate marketing. And remember, honesty is the most valued trait, and building a good audience is crucial.
So, to sum this up, if used correctly Youtube Affiliate marketing really is a match made in heaven!
For more marketing-related content visit my blog IAmAttila or join my premium affiliate marketing forum IAmAffiliate. There, you’ll find all you need to start a career in affiliate marketing or elevate your current operations to the next level!