Facebook is a highly effective platform for building an audience and promoting affiliate products.
With over 2.7 active monthly users, Facebook is by far the biggest social media platform.
- Are Affiliate Links Allowed on Facebook?
- How to Use Facebook for Affiliate Marketing
- 10 Free Ways to Use Facebook for Affiliate Marketing
- Facebook Live for Affiliate Marketing
- Facebook Ads for Affiliate Marketing
- Affiliate Marketing Facebook Ads Strategy
- Facebook Ads Tips and Techniques
Number of monthly active Facebook users worldwide as of 2nd quarter 2020:
Whatever niche you’re in, you’ll find an audience of people interested in your content and affiliate products on Facebook.
In this guide, we’ll take an in-depth look at how you can use Facebook for affiliate marketing. You’ll learn:
- Facebook’s rules on affiliate marketing
- How to promote your affiliate links for free on Facebook
- How to use Facebook Live for affiliate marketing
- How to set up Facebook Ads + strategy & tips
Let’s get started.
Are Affiliate Links Allowed on Facebook?
Yes, but you need to keep within Facebook’s rules and the rules of the merchant or affiliate network you are working with.
General Affiliate Links
Facebook wants its users to stay on the platform and click on Facebook Ads.
That’s how they make money.
There are no specific rules against placing affiliate links in your posts or comments.
However, if you resort to spammy tactics or break Facebook advertising regulations, you will get banned.
You should make sure you follow Federal Trade Commission guidelines.
Always disclose your affiliate relationship when you post an affiliate link.
Include a short sentence like “this post contains affiliate links” to ensure you stay on the right side of the guidelines.
When it comes to Facebook Ads, it’s not a good idea to send traffic directly to a merchant’s landing page.
We’ll show you how you can use Facebook Ads to promote your affiliate products indirectly later in the guide.
Amazon Affiliate Links
If you’re promoting Amazon products, you can include affiliate links in your posts, status updates, and your Facebook page.
But you are not allowed to use Facebook Ads to promote affiliate links for Amazon products directly.
Instead of promoting your affiliate links directly, you can use Facebook Ads to promote content on your website that contains Amazon affiliate links.
ClickBank Affiliate Links
ClickBank has similar rules to Amazon when it comes to Facebook promotion.
You can promote your ClickBank affiliate links in your organic posts, status updates, and your page…
...But you cannot directly promote ClickBank links using Facebook Ads.
Just like Amazon, the best way to get around this rule is to use Facebook Ads to promote content that contains ClickBank affiliate links.
Both Amazon and ClickBank have strict rules against spam promotion tactics.
If you spam links all over Facebook, you’ll find yourself banned from Facebook and banned from the affiliate network.
How to Use Facebook for Affiliate Marketing
Establishing a unique presence separate from your personal account is the best way to build a foundation for your affiliate promotion.
That means creating a Facebook page for your website or brand.
How to Create a Facebook Page
Head over to Facebook.com and sign in to your personal Facebook account.
Click on the “Create” cross located in the top-right menu.
Then click on “Page.”
You’ll be directed to a page like the one below to enter information about your page.
This is where you create a name for your page.
You can use your website name, your brand, or a keyword term related to your niche.
There’s also an option to choose up to three categories to help Facebook users find your page and understand the topics you’ll cover.
You can also add a short description that will be displayed on your page.
Use this description to provide users with a short and snappy summary of the value you offer.
Search engines will use this description when they display your page in search results.
Try to keep your description under 140 characters to ensure it is shown in full when displayed in search engine snippets.
Once you’ve completed these fields, press the “Create Page” button.
You’ll be able to set a profile picture, add contact details, and make further changes to your page once it has been created.
When it comes to your profile picture, try to maintain consistency between your website and your Facebook page.
You want your Facebook followers to recognize the branding and quickly know they are in the right place when they land on your website.
Facebook Page SEO
Once you’ve created your page, you can take a few more steps to make it more appealing to Facebook users and search engines.
After you’ve reached 25 Facebook “Likes,” you can change the URL of your Facebook page.
When you set up your page, you’ll be given a URL that looks something like this:
You can shorten your URL and make it more appealing by changing it to something like:
Backlinks are a crucial SEO ranking factor.
Just like your website, you can increase the chances of ranking higher in search results if you build relevant backlinks to your Facebook page.
If you write a guest post for a third party website, the site owner will usually allow you to include a link to your website in the author bio.
You can request an additional link to build backlinks to both your website and your Facebook page.
When you post an update on your Facebook page wall, keep in mind that the first word has the most SEO value.
It’s a good idea to use a high search volume keyword that is relevant to your niche.
You can also boost the SEO of any images you post as an update by including a relevant keyword in the description.
The description will be used as the SEO title for your image status update.
10 Free Ways to Use Facebook for Affiliate Marketing
1. Take Advantage of the “Pin to Top” Feature
“Pin To Top” is a feature that lets you pin a post to the top of your Facebook page.
This is an ideal location to place anything important that you want your audience to see.
It acts as a free advert seen by anyone who visits your page.
You can use “Pin To Top” to highlight an affiliate offer that you want to push, promote upcoming events like a webinar, or use this space to promote your best performing piece of content.
Lot’s of affiliates use this feature to grow their email list by promoting a lead magnet or newsletter opt-in.
2. Focus on Organic Likes
Getting people to Like your page is an essential step for building an audience on Facebook.
When people Like your page, your posts will appear in their news feeds.
If you have an email list, send out an email encouraging your subscribers to check out your page and give you a Like on Facebook.
Promising some exclusive content on Facebook is a great way to boost click-throughs and increase Facebook Likes.
Likes can also boost the appeal of your page to Facebook users.
The more Likes a page has, the more popular it appears to Facebook users, and the more likely they are to Like the page.
Don’t purchase Likes from a dodgy black hat marketing company.
You need to focus on getting real people interested and liking your page.
When you have a following of real people on Facebook, you can find out in-depth audience information from Facebook Insights.
You can use this data to help you with your content marketing and topic selection.
3. Engage Your Audience
Getting people to Like your page is a good start, but you need to actively engage your audience and offer value to build trust and make affiliate sales.
You need to maintain an active posting schedule without annoying your audience and filling their timelines with promotional posts.
If you’re publishing content on your website once per week, send out a post to promote the content on the day you publish.
You can follow up with a couple more posts throughout the week to ensure that you maximize the chances of your content being seen.
Try to maintain a balance of 80% value posts and 20% promotional.
You should provide educational and entertaining posts most of the time, and be strategic and more selective with your promotional posts.
When people comment on your posts, make sure you acknowledge and reply.
You want to build rapport and build a relationship with your audience.
4. Use Visual Posts
Eye-catching visual content is a must for any online content, including social media promotion.
According to Social Bakers, 93% of Facebook’s most engaging posts are images.
And a study by HubSpot revealed Facebook photo posts generate 53% more likes and 104% more comments than an average post:
Choose high-quality, colorful, and relevant images to increase the reach and engagement of your posts.
You can use free tools like Canva and Stencil to create customized images without any photoshop skills.
If you’re posting a link to a product review on your website, choose a high-quality product image for your Facebook post.
5. Promote Your Website Content
When you publish a new piece of content on your website, promote it on Facebook, and encourage people to check it out.
Don’t just post a link to your content.
Choose an eye-catching image and craft a short summary that sells the benefits and value of your content.
Tell people how it will help them, and include a call-to-action (CTA) to increase the chances of click-throughs to your website.
You can use scheduling tools like Buffer to automate your social media posting.
Automation is a great way to increase the reach of your content and publish regular updates to engage your audience.
6. Create a Facebook Group
Facebook groups are a great way to build an audience of engaged users interested in your niche.
People use Facebook groups to discuss trends, ask for recommendations, meet people with similar interests, and share information.
By creating a new group and taking up the group admin position, you become an authority figure with credibility.
Here’s an example of a Facebook group for beginner runners:
You can take the lead in discussions within the group and promote your affiliate links to your group members.
Focus on offering help and value to your group members, and provide honest recommendations with links to your affiliate products.
7. Promote Links Directly in Posts and Comments
You can include affiliate links directly in your Facebook posts.
This is a tactic you don’t want to overuse and risk annoying your audience...
...But when used selectively with targeted promotions, it can be an effective way to generate sales and commission.
You can also post affiliate links in relevant Facebook groups.
Before you post an affiliate link, check the group’s guidelines to see if promotional posts are accepted.
Some groups don’t accept advertising or promotional posts and will ban you for breaking the rules.
By creating your own Facebook group, you don’t need to worry about your affiliate posts being removed or being kicked from the group.
Before you post any promotional links, try to build a rapport with other members, and contribute value.
If direct promotional posts are not allowed, you can link to content on your website.
8. Use Influencers to Increase Your reach
You can leverage influencers’ audience with a large, engaged audience to increase your reach and drive more traffic to your website.
Use the Facebook search feature to identify pages and influencers in your niche that regularly share high-quality content.
Reach out and ask if these influencers are willing to share your content with their audience.
If your website is new, focus on micro-influencers with an audience of 2K to 10K to increase the chances of your content being shared...
...And make sure the influencers are super relevant to your niche.
If you want to be shared by an influencer with a large audience, you need to be publishing high-quality content that offers real value to people interested in your niche.
9. Link to Your Lead Magnet
You can increase opt-ins to your email list by posting links to your lead magnet landing page.
A landing page is a page on your website designed to convince visitors to commit to a specific action.
People love free stuff.
You can offer a free ebook, guide, or course in exchange for people joining your email list.
Rather than trying to convert users on Facebook with a direct affiliate link, you can open up a direct line of communication via email.
Post a link to your lead magnet landing page and create a short, compelling message that sells your lead magnet’s benefits and how it will help your audience.
10. Launch Facebook Contests
There’s a long history of marketers using contests and the chance of winning something for free to increase brand awareness.
Contests are a great way to boost engagement and increase your reach on Facebook.
You can ask people to sign up for your newsletter as a way to enter your contest.
You’ll get a better response and more interest on Facebook if your prize is something your audience value.
The prize doesn’t have to be expensive, but it should be something you know your audience aspires to have.
Unfortunately, there is no integrated Facebook contest application.
You’ll need to use a third-party app to create your contest and send your Facebook audience to the app to take part.
Shortstack is an excellent free option if you have a Facebook page with under 2,500 likes.
Facebook Live for Affiliate Marketing
Launched back in 2016, Facebook Live is a feature that lets you live stream video content on your Facebook page.
Live streaming is a great way to engage your audience and promote your affiliate products in real-time.
Key Facebook Live Stats:
- Facebook Live videos are watched 3x longer than pre-recorded videos.
- 96% of people have watched a video explainer of a product or service.
- 80% of people prefer to watch a live video than read a blog post.
Live streaming lets you open up two-way conversations with your audience.
That’s how we build relationships.
Here are five ways you can use Facebook Live to engage your audience, get more followers, and promote your affiliate products.
Questions & Answers Sessions
A key advantage of live streaming is the ability to answer your audience’s questions in real-time.
You can host a live Q&A to help your audience understand a topic in your niche and get to know more about your affiliate products.
By asking for feedback during the stream, you can get a better understanding of the types of products and topics your audience are interested in.
When you know what your audience wants, you can adjust your live streaming and content strategy to get more likes and shares and drive more traffic to your affiliate website.
How-to Guides & Tutorials
Live streaming how-to guides and tutorials is a great way to highlight your affiliate products’ benefits and show your audience how they work.
For example, if you promote beauty products, you can host a live stream tutorial with tips and advice to achieve the best results using the products.
Once people have seen the product in action and know how to use it, they’re much more likely to make a purchase.
If you promote physical products, a live unboxing and product review is a great way to demonstrate what your audience can expect when purchasing your affiliate product.
One of the most significant barriers to purchase for online shoppers is that they cannot hold the product in their hands and see it in person before purchasing.
By hosting a live review, you can show your audience the details up close and help them overcome their objections and commit to a purchase.
Broadcast Live Events
If you attend or host any events, you can use Facebook Live to give your audience an interactive online experience of what it’s like to attend.
You can combine interviews with other attendees, Q&As, and virtual tours to educate your audience and get them excited about your niche.
Broadcasting events is a great way to engage your audience…
...But it requires more preparation than other live streaming content types.
You’ll need to make sure that you have tested your equipment and internet connection before you go live.
Interviewing experts and well-known personalities in your niche is a great way to increase your reach on Facebook.
You can discuss hot topics in your niche, ask your guest about their experiences, and cover the latest products that interest your audience.
When it comes to the types of guests you should invite for an interview, focus on people with an existing audience similar to your target market.
You can also invite experts in your niche to offer educational and informative advice on a specific topic.
Your guest will usually share and promote your interview on their Facebook page and social media channels.
This is a great way to get new followers and build your audience.
Repurpose Your Facebook Live Content
Once you’ve finished your live stream, you can repurpose your video to create new content types.
For example, you can edit the footage to create a shorter video for YouTube or use the audio from a live stream interview to create a podcast.
There are a bunch of possibilities for repurposing your live stream video content.
Once your live stream is over, the content can keep working for you for months and even years to come.
Facebook Ads for Affiliate Marketing
You can achieve good results using free promotional tactics on Facebook.
But you would be overlooking one of the key advantages of using Facebook for affiliate marketing.
Facebook Ads are advertisements you can place in the news feeds, sidebars, and messenger apps of Facebook users.
You can use Facebook’s precise targeting to make sure your message gets in front of the people most likely to be interested in your content and your affiliate products.
To use Facebook Ads, you need to create a Business Manager account.
A Business Manager account helps you manage your ad account, your page, and provides insights into your Facebook performance.
How to Create Business Manager on Facebook
Head over to business.facebook.com and click on the “CREATE ACCOUNT” button in the top right corner.
Fill in the form fields with your business name, name, and email address.
Once you’ve entered your details, click “Next.”
Choose your country and enter your address, website, etc.
You’ll now be directed to your Business Manager Dashboard.
The next step is to add your Facebook page.
Click on “Accounts” and then select “Pages.”
Now click on the blue “Add” button in the center of the page.
When the popup displays, add your Facebook page name and click “Add Page.”
You’ve successfully added your Facebook page to your Business Account.
Now it’s time to create your Facebook Ads Account.
How to Create a Facebook Ads Account
From your Business Account dashboard, click on “Accounts” and select “Ad accounts.”
Click on the “Add” button and then “Create a new ad account.”
Choose an ad account name, time zone, and currency.
When the popup displays, select “My business” and click “Create.”
You now have a Facebook Ads account.
Before you create any ads, it’s highly recommended that you set up your Facebook Pixel.
Your Facebook Pixel is a small piece of code that helps you track Facebook Ads traffic to your website.
It’s vital for tracking conversions and gaining insight into the performance of your ads.
How to Set Up Facebook Pixel
From the Business Manager dashboard, click on the menu button in the top left corner and select “Pixels” in the data sources subcategory.
Now click on the “Add” button in the center of the page.
In the popup, enter a name for your Pixel and click “Continue.”
You’ll now see a box that contains the small snippet of code that you need to add to your website.
You need to insert this snippet of code into the header section of your website.
There are several ways you can do this, but using a free plugin is a beginner-friendly and fast way to add your Pixel to your website.
Login to the WordPress dashboard for your website and install the free plugin Headers and Footers.
Remember to activate the plugin once you have installed it onto your website.
Once Headers and Footers is activated, go to “Settings” in the left-hand menu of your WordPress dashboard and click on “Insert Headers and Footers.”
Paste the Facebook Pixel code into the “Scripts in Header” box.
Remember to save your changes once you have pasted the Pixel code.
Your Facebook Pixel is installed on your website, and you’re ready to create your first ad.
How to Launch Your First Ad
To create your first Facebook ad, click on the menu option in the top left of your Business Manager dashboard.
Click on “Ads Manager,” and you’ll be directed to a page that looks like this:
Click on the “Create Ad” button in the center of the page, and a popup will display.
Click on “Select Guided Creation.”
Choose your campaign and marketing objectives to create your first Facebook ad.
Affiliate Marketing Facebook Ads Strategy
We mentioned in the first section of the guide how you shouldn’t use Facebook Ads to promote your affiliate products directly.
So how can Facebook ads help you to generate more sales?
You need to get people off Facebook, onto your website, and signed up to your email list.
When you have a direct communication line via email, you have multiple opportunities to convert your audience into customers and earn a commission.
Here’s a breakdown of a Facebook Ads lead generation strategy for affiliate marketers.
1. A Lead Magnet & Opt-in Form
To get your audience to click on your ad and give you their email address, you need to offer something free that is too good to turn down.
A free lead magnet does just that.
When you provide a free resource or piece of content that helps people overcome a problem, they are usually willing to give you their email in exchange.
Your lead magnet should help people to achieve measurable results.
It needs to be packed with valuable information that helps people solve a problem or achieve a goal.
A lead magnet can come in several formats, including:
- Free courses
- Free trial
Whichever format you choose to use as a lead magnet, make sure you deliver on the promise you offer in your ad.
If you claim your free ebook can help people learn to play a song on the guitar, it needs to deliver on that promise.
This is the first step in building a relationship with your audience.
Your lead magnet is your first impression.
When your lead magnet delivers on its promise, people will begin to trust you...
...And if they trust you, they’re more likely to listen to your recommendations and purchase your affiliate products.
Once you’ve got people to give you their email address, the next step is to send them to a bridge page.
2. The Bridge Page
Once a user has given you their email address, you redirect them to your bridge page.
This page should contain a welcome message...
...It also allows you to explain what your new subscriber can expect from joining your email list.
You can confirm that your lead magnet is being sent to their email address, and inform your audience about the types of email they will receive and how often they will receive them.
It’s also an opportunity to build on the solution you offer in your lead magnet.
A bridge page is your first opportunity to generate a sale.
For example, let’s say that you offer a free ebook to help dog owners stop their dogs from barking.
You can now recommend a product that helps your audience achieve that goal, including stress relief dog chews, electric collars, etc.
A bridge page lets you introduce yourself to your audience and gives you the first opportunity to make an affiliate sale.
3. Using Your Email List to Make Sales
With Facebook Ads helping you grow your email list, you should have a direct communication channel to a list of subscribers interested in your niche.
Rather than paying for an advertisement every time you want to get the message out about a product or service, email is a free way to directly contact the people that are most likely to purchase your affiliate products.
The best way to generate sales is to create an email autoresponder campaign.
The first few emails you send should be solely focused on providing value.
You want to warm up your list by giving helpful free content and advice to build trust.
Include a link to your best-performing blog post, a free webinar, an interview, etc.
Whichever format you choose, make sure the content is packed with value and helps your audience overcome a common pain point or achieve a goal.
After you’ve sent out a few value emails, you can recommend one of your affiliate products as an additional tool to help.
Because you have established trust and helped your audience with your free content, your subscribers are much more likely to click your affiliate links and purchase your recommended products.
Facebook Ads help you to build your list…
...But smart affiliates know that it is much more cost-effective and profitable to use your Facebook traffic as a way to attract new email subscribers.
The chances of somebody who has never heard of you clicking on your Facebook ad and purchasing an affiliate product are much smaller than somebody who knows you and regularly reads your content.
Your email subscribers might not purchase your affiliate links at the start of your relationship…
...But by continually offering value through your emails, you’ll build a loyal audience that trusts you and purchases the products that you recommend.
Facebook Ads Tips and Techniques
1. Focus on Mobile Users
As of July 2020, 98.3% of Facebook users access the social media platform through a mobile device.
Nearly 8 out of 10 Facebook users exclusively use a mobile device to access Facebook.
That means you need your landing pages to be optimized for mobile users.
When somebody clicks your ad on Facebook, they expect that your landing page will display correctly and be easy to use on mobile.
If a user has to pinch the screen and zoom to read your copy and fill in your opt-in form, you’re throwing away your ad budget.
You can make your landing page mobile-friendly by:
- Making your page fast to load
- Using a single-column layout
- Keeping form fields to a minimum
- Using bullet points
- Keeping copy short and concise
- Making sure your CTA button is easy to tap
Before you launch an ad, test the landing page on a mobile device to make sure it is easy to use and mobile-friendly.
2. Split Testing
Even if you think your copywriting skills are up to scratch, you should always run split tests to make your ads more appealing and effective.
You can use Facebook’s built-in split testing feature to test out different headlines, ad copy, and images to determine what works best for your audience.
Keep the offer the same, but test out different ways of “selling” the offer to your audience.
By making data-driven improvements, you can increase the number of people clicking your ads and achieve your Facebook Ads goals faster.
3. Keep Relevance High and Frequency Low
Once your Facebook Ads campaign is up and running, you should pay close attention to the relevance score and frequency.
Frequency shows you how many times a single user sees your ad.
If your frequency score is 3, it tells you that each targeted user sees your ad three times on average.
If your frequency starts to creep up towards double figures, you should think about changing your ad and your targeting options.
Somebody who has seen your ad ten times and is yet to show any interest in your offer is unlikely to convert.
Try to keep your frequency score 3 or lower.
You can keep your frequency low by increasing your target audience size or creating more versions of your ad.
Frequency is especially important when you start to scale your campaign and invest more budget.
The relevance score is Facebook’s metric for measuring how relevant your ad is to your target audience.
It works on a scale of 1 to 10. A highly relevant ad receives a high score, and an irrelevant as will receive a score closer to 1.
You want to keep your relevance score as high as possible.
Facebook uses the response your ad receives from users and its algorithms to provide a relevance score.
If Facebook users hide your ad or react negatively, your score will decrease. If people like, comment, or click on your ad, your relevance score will increase.
A higher relevance score can help you gain traction in newsfeeds and even lower your cost per click.
4. Use Lookalike Audiences
A great way to harness Facebook’s targeting capabilities is to use your email list to create a lookalike audience for your ads.
The first step is to upload your email list to Facebook Ads Manager and create a custom audience.
Facebook will use the details of your email subscribers in the custom audience to create a lookalike audience.
The lookalike audience will be made up of Facebook users that share similarities to your custom audience of email subscribers.
This is an excellent opportunity to find more people that are similar to your existing audience.
When you create a lookalike audience, try to find a balance between target audience size and similarity to your existing audience attributes.
You can slide the “audience size” meter to get an optimum audience size for your ads while maintaining similarity.
5. Keep Your Ad Copy Short and Concise
If you’re new to PPC and Facebook Ads, it can be tempting to try and get maximum value for money by cramming in as much information as possible into your ads.
But this isn’t a good strategy.
Try to keep your ad copy as short as possible while communicating your offer’s value and benefits.
Less is more when it comes to paid ads on social media.
What is the benefit people will receive by downloading your lead magnet and clicking on your ad?
How does it help people, and what problem does it solve?
Your ad copy needs to clearly explain the benefits of your offer in as few words as possible.
You can also use ad spy software like AdSpy to see how advertisers in your niche are creating compelling ads in a short and concise message.
Facebook offers a great opportunity to build an audience and promote your affiliate products and services.
Some affiliates use Facebook and Facebook Ads as their number one source of targeted web traffic.
You can start by creating a Facebook page and building your audience organically.
If you have the budget and are confident in your copywriting skills, you can leverage Facebook Ads to fast track your email list’s growth and generate affiliate sales.
Be consistent with your efforts and focus on delivering value through both your organic and paid promotion.
Once you have a sizable Facebook audience and a growing email list, you’ll be well on your way to a lucrative affiliate marketing business.
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