One of the things that we really want to do along our adoption journey is track the ways things work and don't work, specifically (in this post) how certain fundraising efforts work and don't work. We hope to be a help to other families seeking adoption in the future.
One of the first things we will talk about is affiliate marketing. While I get the gist of what it is, I'm fortunate to have a husband that is really into geeky stuff like this so I'm going to let him take over. -Jaimee
Affiliate marketing is something that we definitely wanted to do when we started talking about fundraising. Let me share why...
What is Affiliate Marketing?
Basically, affiliate marketing is marketing for companies and products and referring people to use or buy those things that they might already be interested in. For example, you are on an adoption blog right now so you may very well have an interest in the same things we do, namely, baby stuff! When you click on links in our blog and then go on to make a purchase we earn money as an affiliate .
How does Affiliate Marketing work?
Typically when you sign up for an affiliate program or referral program all you must do is provide a little bit of information about yourself and your website and then you are assigned a keyword or referral id and dashboard. If you hover over one of the amazon ads here on our site you might see in the url at the bottom of your screen the id "adoptionadventure-20." Think of this ID as a bank account number. This is how Amazon (or any other affiliate) knows how to pay their marketers... you!
How much do you make via Affiliate Marketing?
Commissions are set by the company you market for but they typically range from 7-12%. So really, your earning potential is unlimited. Some of your largest blogs make 90% of their income this way and earn $50-75k per month... yes, per month. Do we make that much? Do my wife and I still work full time jobs? Yes. So no, we don't make that much. :) Our hope is to make a few extra dollars towards the adoption.
The Ethics of Affiliate Marketing
One thing that frequently comes up with this sort of advertising has to do with ethics. Is it ethical to advertise for things you don't use? Some affiliate marketers do try to bombard you with ads that are of no use to them. While this may be ethical, we have a strong desire to advertise only those products or services that we use as a family and enjoy as a family. The links/ads that you see on our site are for services we use (like Amazon), products we love (books, clothing from particular brands), and causes we have supported (Sevenly, Toms). Periodically we will even review some of the products that we advertise as we move through this adoption process.
Where does your network come in when it comes to Affiliate Marketing?
Here's the part you've all been waiting for, right? How can you help when it comes to affiliate marketing? Most of us use Amazon for shopping. Whether it is for our books, our movies, computers, or cameras, we have all made small and large purchases on Amazon. With Christmas fast approaching, why not click on over Amazon through one of our banners and make your purchase. Like scrapbooking? Why not go over to that 2 Peas in a Bucket link and make a purchase. Love J. Crew or graphic tees? We have some of our favorite links in our sidebar. Make a purchase. When you do, it will help us raise the necessary funds for bringing our little girl home.
I hope this post has been helpful for you as you learn how you can help us with our goal of bringing home our little girl. If you are starting the adoption process, I pray that you can use what you've learned in this post to raise funds of your own. Have any questions for us? I'll do my best to reply to all questions. Have you used affiliate marketing before on your blog? Comment below and share with our readers how it worked for you. Share your blog so that we can help you out when we make purchases in the future. It's little things like this that can make the joy of adoption happen for others. When it comes to adoption... we really are "all in this together."
Grace & Peace
100% of all funds raised using affiliate marketing and links from this blog will go towards bringing our little girl home. (100% like as in all of the money).