Well, you did it. You identified a niche, built a website, and created a little bit of content for your new web property. Congratulations. It’s a huge accomplishment to create something.
Years ago you could be very successful with affiliate marketing with a minimum amount of content. Even today there are ways to create incredibly profitable websites using very limited amounts of content. Even as recently as 2013 we’ve seen very successful methods promoted by ethical marketers that teach the creation of five and 10 page websites as a way to make a living on the internet. It’s possible. You can do it, but it’s not what I recommend.
Don’t get me wrong. Having a website that makes money is great. But, having a great website with awesome content that makes money is way better.
I actually think it’s a good idea when you get started to create several small websites with a small investment as a way to get your feet wet and test markets. But once you find a market that you love (either because it’s a great market or because it’s incredibly profitable) the smart thing to do is to create amazing content to make your website the go-to resource on the internet for that niche.
My friend Nicole Dean always talks about making the internet a better place. I think one of the things that you need to always be asking yourself in internet business is whether or not your websites actually make the internet a better place. Do you have just a few pieces of worthless content that are simply designed to generate affiliate commissions or are you building a real resource that actually helps people find good products that they need and that will help them solve their problems?
The choice is up to you. I won’t judge you if you build 100 crummy websites that each make $1 a day. Heck, I’ve done a lot of that. At one point I had 130 websites myself. The truth of the matter is that you’ll be a lot happier with large successful websites that you’re proud to show people because they have killer content.
That begs the question, “How in the world am I going to create killer content?” That’s what this section of our affiliate marketing roadmap tutorial is all about.
For new websites that you’re serious about, I recommend that you create something on the order of 25 pieces of content using what I personally call “the five-by- five method.” In the five-by-five method I recommend that you create five pieces of content in five different kinds of topic areas.
In this tutorial I’m going to actually offer you more than five different areas to select from so that you can pick the things that resonate with you. When you’re done you’ll have identified 25 different pieces of content that you can write yourself or outsource to content creators. (Note that we talk more about outsourcing in the last article on growing your business.)
Method #1: Five Best Keywords
This method is obvious, and you probably already used this method to create your initial pieces of content, whether you recognized it or not.
With the keyword method what we want to do is look at what searchers are actually typing into Google and write articles that are directly targeted at those keywords.
For example, for the Corn Sheller Site I noticed that one of the keywords was corn sheller history, so I’ve attacked that keyword specifically writing a long article about the history of the corn sheller in America. You can see that article here.
For your site, you should put yourself in the mind of the ideal searcher. What is that person looking for? And what does Google tell you that the most popular keywords are?
Take all of that into consideration and pick your five favorite keywords and write five articles, one for each keyword.
Method #2: Five Great Product Reviews
This is an excellent strategy for affiliate marketing. Find five products related to the topic of your website and write some sort of review for each product.
Now, of course the best reviews come from people who actually own the products and can write about their personal experiences. But, you can put on your journalism hat and write a review based on what people are saying about the product. Sometimes these reviews are even better because they sound authoritative.
You can say things like, “According to the manufacturer, the product claims to do this. But from reviews, we see that the benefits are much greater because of this, this, and this.” You can use reviews that you find on Amazon and other places to summarize in your own words what people are saying about the product.
Note that Amazon is very particular about people stealing review content off their website, so be very careful about how you use content from Amazon.
Method #3: The Five Most Common Questions
Think about your niche and think about the five things that people would most commonly ask about your topic area.
If you met someone on the street and had them ask you the first five things that came to their mind about corn shellers, what would they ask? I can tell you what I asked; What the heck is a corn sheller? Where do I buy a corn sheller? And so forth.
Think about the five most popular questions, try and back that up with a little bit of keyword research, and answer those five most popular questions on your blog.
This is obviously a successful method for generating traffic, because entire websites, like About.com and WikiHow, are basically websites that answer questions.
Method #4: Five Most Helpful Tips
Think about your topic for your website in the context of someone who is trying to accomplish something. What are the five most helpful tips you can offer someone?
Is it a weight loss website? If so, maybe tip number one is to eat less and tip number two is move more.
In the case of the corn sheller site, since most of my readers are buying corn shellers on eBay (or at least that’s what I’d like them to do) then my tips can be about how to successfully complete corn sheller transactions on eBay.
• How to Buy a Corn Sheller on eBay
• How to Know if Your Corn Sheller is Good When Buying It on eBay
Method #5: Five Numbered Lists
You see these blog posts of numbered lists all over the internet for a reason; they create traffic. People link to these posts and people like reading numbered list posts.
Most of you will be familiar with David Letterman, who popularized the Top Ten posts on late night television. These things are popular for a reason; they appeal to the human psyche of wanting to have small nuggets of information delivered in an organized way.
Think about your reader. What’s a collection of things that you can offer them that would look good in a list?
• Here Are the Seven Best Places to Buy Corn Shellers
• Here Are the Top Three Things You Need to Look at When Buying a Corn Sheller
• Here Are the Seven Ways to Evaluate a Seller When You Buy a Corn Sheller
Method #6: Pick Your Five Favorite Book Chapters
This is a great method for creating content that I actually learned from Jeremy and Jason over at Internet Business Mastery a long time ago.
Go to Amazon.com and find a book about your niche topic. Open the table of contents and there will be a list of generic topic areas that you can pick from.
Chapter Seven might be all about how to repair corn shellers and there might be four or five subchapters in that book. That will give you all the ideas you need to create five blog posts that are based on chapters titles of books readily available for perusing at Amazon or in your local bookstore.
Method #7: Five Tutorials
How-to posts are absolutely popular, especially when they give killer content that tells somebody exactly how to do something.
Think of the five things that somebody might need to do in your niche and write five posts about how to do it.
Method #8: Do Five Content Round-Ups
Think about the important topics in your niche and go find the very best posts on those topics in your niche. This is called content curation.
In this sort of post you can summarize the posts that you’re referencing in your own words. Make a list of three or four of the best posts for a topic and post that as “Great Resources About Topic X.”
These are incredibly valuable to your readers and they have the added benefit of starting to build a relationship between you and the top writers in your niche area. Once you’ve written these posts you can contact them via Twitter or email and just say, “I wanted to let you know that I included your post in my round-up this week. Thanks for the great content. I would love to talk to you at some time in the future if you need anything.”
Building relationships in your niche can be a great way to establish yourself and get traffic. We’ll talk about that in the section on growing your business at the end of this series.
Method #9: Five Personal Stories
If you’re writing in a niche where you can tell some personal stories that are in any way related, these can be very popular as well. Personal stories are one of the most valuable content tools that you can employ because reader engagement can be highest with this sort of content.
Method #10: Five Predictions About Your Niche
Do you know enough about the niche that you’re writing in to make some prediction about what the future might hold? If not, you can read other people’s predictions and draw your own conclusions. After all, they’re only predictions, so it’s not like it’s the end of the world if you don’t get it exactly right.
These posts can be very interesting and can go viral, especially if your predictions are controversial.
Method #11: Five YouTube Summaries
This is one of my favorites. Go find five really great YouTube videos that don’t promote someone else’s product or someone else’s website and embed them on your site in five different posts. Do the reader a favor and summarize these videos so that they don’t have to watch them to find out what’s in them.
You’ll be adding value to the video, value to your readers, and it looks great to have video on your website.
Wrapping Things Up for Content Creation….
These are just a few of the ideas that you can use to create killer content for your website. Again, when you’re starting a new website, once you’ve decided to really commit, I recommend that you create 25 blog post by choosing five of the above eleven areas and doing five posts for each area.
(5 areas x 5 posts per area = 25 posts)
Once you’ve created all this content you’ll be ready to start with our next section, which involves getting traffic to your website.