Affiliate Marketing 101

Wouldn’t it be great if everyone could be a walking, breathing, talking advertisement for your brand?  This is the basic concept behind affiliate marketing, where a brand outsources its marketing to a person (usually an influencer) for a small fee.

Common affiliates include social media influencers, content partners (e.g. Honeycombers, Mothership), or coupon/cashback websites (Fave, Shopback).


How does affiliate marketing work?


Affiliates are usually paid by performance. This means they get paid only if they manage to help your business close a sale, drive clicks, or sign up.

As a business owner, you get to decide and negotiate the amount of commission an affiliate receives for a particular action that you want them to take.

Performance can be tracked by using an affiliate link, which contains a tracking parameter that indicates the sale comes from that particular affiliate. It can also be tracked using a specific affiliate promo code that customers use at checkout.


How to start affiliate marketing for your business?


A good starting point is to look for affiliates that have a strong affinity with your product. This way, it will ensure that you are reaching the right audience.

For example, if you are selling high-quality yoga mats, an appropriate affiliate could be a social media yoga influencer that naturally has a broad target audience base who are yoga practitioners.

Businesses may choose to engage more than one type of affiliate at one time. In addition to commissioning a social media yoga influencer to promote your product, you could engage a review platform to write reviews about your product.

Leverage affiliate networks, such as, and, or content agencies such as to help connect your brand with the relevant affiliate partners. These networks can integrate with your shopfront and smoothen the process of recruitment, managing campaigns, providing analytics, and tracking commissions.


How to be an affiliate?


There are many benefits to becoming an affiliate! It is a good side hustle, allows for work flexibility, and can become a passive income.

Building a community is key to being a good affiliate. A good starting point is to think about what you are passionate about or interested in and share content around that.  If you are thinking about how to plan your content, have a look at our Content Creation Strategy course.  Develop your own style of communicating to your audiences in a way that is authentic and entertaining or even educational.

You may choose to reach out to certain brands that you share the same affinity with and pitch how you can amplify their brand with your unique messaging and connection with your audience.

Starting out on your own can be daunting. Fortunately, there are many affiliate partner networks such as,,, or Amazon, that you can tap on. These affiliate partners provide a range of services for affiliates such as training, administrative support, connection to reliable merchants, and the ability to negotiate for higher commissions!

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Assistant Instructor: Yanling

About the author

Yanling is a Digital Marketer who is passionate in helping drive business strategy through digital platforms.