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If you are part of an online affiliate network or, like me, part of an emerging green online affiliate network, you are using Twitter (and if you aren’t using Twitter, you should be!).
Affiliate Marketing on Twitter:

1. Listen

Half if not more of the Twitter experience is listening to the conversations. I mentioned this above as part of personalizing your tweets, but LISTENING is worth so much more than that. Just seeing how other people utilize Twitter can be revolutionary for your own use. Watching a #hashtag conversation can spark ideas or lead you to a new solution that you wouldn’t have thought of otherwise. Most importantly, Listening takes you out of your own perspective on Twitter, your business and the world. It gives you a window into what other people think and how they see things. When you start tweeting again, things will make a lot more sense. As for affiliate marketing, the best thing you can do is listen to see what from your affiliate network will link up best!

2.    Add Value
The other half of the Twitter experience is to add value. This can come in so many forms: blog entries, ebooks, advice, jokes, encouragement—anything that will make the recipient’s experience of Twitter more enjoyable or effective. Adding value to the experience of your followers will, in turn, add value to you as someone to be followed. Adding value can also come from ReTweeting useful information and articles that other people post- being part of their link-chain and promotional network is a way to add value to both you and them. In the end, Twitter is a place to learn by listening and then to add value by having your say. Affiliate marketing adds value as long as it is relevant and targeted at the user. Having the right affiliate link to send on to someone at the right time is a great way to add value.

3. Personalize
Twitter is a social media application that is about relationships. Especially with the recent 1000% + growth, it is important that you get to know both the people you follow and the people who are following you. When you send an @reply or a DM, it should be aimed at that person, not using that avenue to push a sales pitch. To personalize, listen to the people you are following and listen to the people who follow you. The personalization of affiliate marketing will only make your message and product even more attractive to the recipient.

4. Be Part of the Conversation
It is increasingly becoming a Twitter faux pas to do cold tweets that have nothing to do with either what you do or what the recipient user does. In my twitter ebook (http://www.murraynewlands.com/index.php/twitter-ebook/)I talk about not setting up a DM that is pushing a hard sell or simply directing a new follower to go and download something. In addition to not having a high conversion rate it will probably bother some people and ruin your chances for a future sale.

5. Content Links
This can be an extension of adding value or a more specific way to add value. Basically, instead of putting the affiliate link straight into a tweet, place the affiliate link into the body of a blog entry. This will make the user/reader feel like they are discovering the link rather than having the link pushed. Of course, affiliate marketing is all about getting links out there and converting, but the best way to get a link to become a conversion on a social network isn’t always through volume.

Content links also take care of the add value challenge. Affiliate marketing is all about content creation that starts a conversation around a product or service.

Twitter and affiliate marketing can be a fantastic partnership as long as it is used strategically and effectively.

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