Want To Guest Post On Go Ask Your Daddy? Here's How...

Want To Guest Post On Go Ask Your Daddy? Here’s How…

Thank you for your interest in guest blogging here at Go Ask Your Daddy. I am currently accepting guest posts on content that directly relates to my blog’s content (blogging tips/tricks/advice, product reviews, parenting advice). To make it easier and less time consuming for the both of us, please read and adhere to the following guidelines before submitting your guest post:

  • You MUST be an active subscriber to Go Ask Your Daddy and remain an active subscriber in order to submit content. I look for guest post contributors that engage with my posts and my readers on a regular basis. I’m not looking for a quick hit and run. If this is your intent, unfortunately your content will not be a good fit for my blog.
  • Do not send me an email asking if I accept guest posts. The answer is yes. Due to the hundreds of emails I get like this every week, I simply do not have time to respond to all of them. There’s a 100% chance I will delete the email immediately. It also proves you did not read my guidelines.
  • I only accept guest posts that are beneficial to my readers. A very good question to ask yourself before submitting your content is: What makes my post unique and beneficial to Go Ask Your Daddy’s readers?
  • Your credentials: My readers deserve content that contains solid and useful information from reliable writers and sources. You don’t have to be a professional writer, but I do ask that you demonstrate some expertise in the topic you are proposing to me.
  • Content: The post must be original and exclusive to Go Ask Your Daddy. It cannot be published on another site.
  • Length: Content should be between 500 and 1,000 words.
  • Title: Be creative with your title. Make it amazing and unforgettable!
  • Spelling, Grammar, Typos: Must be non-existent. I do not have time to edit. Posts that come through with these types of errors will be rejected.
  • Bio: Provide a short bio with 2 to 3 sentences that includes one link to your blog and to your Twitter account. You may also include one link to your about page. Bio will be placed at the end of the post.
  • Images: Only submit images that you legally own. Any image with Creative Commons is fine. I’m looking for images that are high quality and are at least 900 pixels wide. Photos must include proof of copyright.
  • Affiliate links: I do not accept posts that contain affiliate links.
  • Product Advertisement: Your post cannot be an advertisement for your product or the equivalent of a sponsored post. If this is the case, it will be considered as a sponsored post and a $50 fee. See my Sponsored Post Guidelines here.
  • There is no compensation for guest blogging at Go Ask Your Daddy. I do promote your post on multiple social media accounts and in Facebook Groups.

Submission Process

Email the following information to guestposts@goaskyourdaddy.com with GUEST POST as the subject line:

  • First and last name
  • Website name and full URL
  • Post title
  • Bio
  • Brief summary of your post
  • Include 2 links to other posts you’ve written so that I can read them
  • Include the post content as text in the body of the email. Do not include it as an attachment.
  • Attach all images

After Submission

  • Allow 3-5 weeks for review and publication. I publish one guest post per week.
  • I will notify you if and when I’ve accepted your guest post, and an estimated date as to when it will be published.
  • I reserve the right to edit your post in any way I see fit for it to be used on my blog.
  • I require all guest posters to post a lead-in on their blog, usually in the first paragraph of the post or a simple “My content was featured on Go Ask Your Daddy today” with a link to the published post on Go Ask Your Daddy.
  • Please take the time to respond to all comments on the post.

What will not be accepted:

  • Posts that promote affiliate products/services.
  • Posts without headlines and sub-headlines
  • Guest post requests that don’t include the submission items above.
  • Work that must be edited significantly to be readable.
  • Off-topic posts, or posts that are not beneficial to my readers.
  • Plagiarized content. This will get you banned from future guest post opportunities.
  • Inappropriate content.
How Tailwind Is Helping My Blog Traffic

How Tailwind Is Helping My Blog Traffic

This post contains affiliate links.  If you decide to make a purchase using those links, I’ll receive a small commission that helps me keep Go Ask Your Daddy rolling. Thanks for all of your continued support!

Updated: July 28, 2017

View my free video tutorial on how to use Tailwind:

Have you heard that Pinterest is one of the best tools to help bloggers promote posts and increase traffic? Could your Pinterest scheduling use an upgrade? If Pinterest is currently NOT one of the tools you use to promote your blog, it’s time to start. Today’s post is all about why I love Tailwind and how I use it to increase my blog’s exposure and traffic.

My Old Pinning Strategy Sucked

Before I found Tailwind, I was one of those bloggers that simply pinned a single pin every time I created a new post. I manually pinned to several boards 1-2 times per week and that was it. I saw very little difference in the amount of traffic coming to my site. It was very frustrating because I had always read that Pinterest was the best way to promote my content and increase my traffic. It wasn’t working, and the plan I had put in place flat out sucked.

Tailwind Changed All Of That!

Tailwind is the best new app I have signed up for in a long time! It has really helped increase my repins, and even more, the amount of blog traffic I’m getting as a result of those repins.  A few months ago, I decided to sign up for the Tailwind trial, and immediately fell in love with all the awesome features. A few weeks ago, I decided to start using some of the income I’m making from my blog to cover the $15/month option that Tailwind offers in hopes that I’ll see double to triple amounts of traffic headed to my blog.

Let’s talk about Pinterest first, before we really dive in to all of the features that Tailwind offers. You have to understand how to properly use Pinterest before Tailwind can help your traffic grow.

You have to be extremely active on Pinterest to really see growth in your blog. Pinning once or twice a week won’t cut it. To really see any results at all, you need a specific pinning plan each day of the week. If you are like me (4 kids, full-time job, etc), it’s nearly impossible to sit down and schedule pins to go out every day. This is where Tailwind comes in and kicks “tail!” I love scheduling a bunch of my pins to go out for the week, and get back to writing more blog posts.

What is Tailwind?

Tailwind is a web-based client that integrates with Pinterest to find the best times during the day to send out your pins. It eliminates the need to sit in front of Pinterest all day trying to schedule hundreds, or even thousands, of pins manually. Tailwind does more than just automates the scheduling of your pins. It analyzes your pins to determine which ones are getting the most response and repins.

Why Use Tailwind?

Using a Pinterest scheduler makes life so much easier. I simply do not have time to schedule pins for all 500+ blog posts I’ve written in 2 years. With Tailwind, I schedule either for a week, two weeks, or even a month out, and sit back and relax while it does its work.

One great feature of Tailwind is that you have the ability to adjust the time slots and customize it to suit your needs. Right now, I’m just using the schedule Tailwind has created for me. As I begin sharing more pins, I may decide to create my own schedule. It’s nice to know, though, that Tailwind automatically schedules pins at the most opportune times to maximize exposure.

Pinning to Boards

The whole reason I use Tailwind versus manually sharing my pins is the ability to share pins to multiple boards at once. Not only will Tailwind transfer over the names of all of your personal and group boards, you can also create your own board lists. For example, I have about 30 different boards on blogging – both my own and groups where I collaborate. I created a “Blogging” board list so that I don’t have to select all 30 boards at once. Tailwind will send the pin to all boards included in the list. You CAN’T do this on your own manually, folks!  This alone saves me HOURS!

Tailwind also has an official Google Chrome extension that allows you to pin directly from websites. If you see an image you really like on another site, all you have to do is hover over it, click on the “Schedule” button, and off you go.

Pin Inspector

There’s a really cool tool in Tailwind called the Pin Inspector. If you want to know how your pins are performing, this is the tool that gives you all of that information. The Pin Inspector gives you a breakdown of the most repins all the way down to the least. If you want to reschedule a pin, it’ll let you do it right from the Pin Inspector! Pretty cool!

Tribes

If you haven’t heard of Tailwind Tribes, they are awesome ways to share your content with other bloggers! The neat thing about Tribes is that you can search for any topic that matches your niche and join the tribes.  Since I just got started a few weeks ago, I haven’t joined yet, but I plan on doing so soon.

Google Analytics Integration

I love reviewing my stats every day – sometimes multiple times a day. Tailwind has the ability to integrate your Google Analytics account into your Tailwind dashboard for full visibility of your performance. Stay on top of trends and see which pins are bringing in the most visibility and revenue for your blog.

Tailwind Visual Marketing Suite

Promote With Other Tools Too

Pinterest and Tailwind are just two pieces of the promotion puzzle. Although Pinterest is awesome for traffic, don’t drop every other promotion method. I find success is sharing across a number of social media outlets for maximum exposure. I get a lot of referral traffic from Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and StumbleUpon.

Improved Traffic Since Using Tailwind

So, I’ve only been using Tailwind for a few weeks, but I’m already seeing massive improvement in my blog’s traffic. Tailwind has made it so easy to get my content shared to the masses with as little manual effort as possible. I’m now getting nearly 14,000 monthly views on Pinterest and about 100-200 repins per week. Tailwind has been a big part of this increase!

Pinterest and Tailwind are critical to my blog’s growth and success. If you don’t have a plan on how to schedule and share your pins, it’s never too late to put one together. Tailwind makes it so easy and guides you along the way. The more you are able to share your content, the more followers you will have. Isn’t that what you want to do in the end? Increasing followers can turn to higher blog income.

Want to Join Tailwind? Here’s how!

I hope today’s blog post has convinced you that life as a blogger would be much better with Tailwind. I used to be a blogger reading other posts about how Tailwind has jump started traffic for other bloggers and wondered if it was even worth my time to try it out. After my free trial, I tried to go back to manual pinning and just couldn’t do it. I have way too many pins to be able to pin effectively. I took the leap that will hopefully repay me with higher traffic down the road.

To start a free trial of Tailwind, use my referral link.  You’ll get 100 pins free. After your 100 pins, you have to sign up for their Plus Plan. If you choose the annual subscription plan, it’s $119 per year with 4 months free (and unlimited pins). If you go with the monthly plan, it’s $14.99 per month with a limit of 400 pins per month. The cool thing is, if you do decide to join Tailwind, you can also become one of their affiliates just like me!

Tailwind Visual Marketing Suite

Why I Love Dayton, Ohio + $25 Gift Certificate Giveaway!

Why I Love Centerville, Ohio + $25 Gift Certificate Giveaway!

Who doesn’t like to have a place to call “home?”  No one wants to live in a place where they don’t feel welcomed, where there’s nothing to do, or where they don’t feel safe. I can honestly say that the great city of Dayton, Ohio is a place I call my home.

I live in the city of Centerville, Ohio. Centerville is a suburb 15 minutes south of downtown Dayton. Centerville is the kind of city people want to live in because of its rich heritage, warm neighborhoods, amazing amenities, and a real sense of “home” you just don’t get anywhere else. What more could anyone ask for in a hometown?

Even though I wasn’t born or raised in Dayton, or even the Midwest for that matter, I still feel away from “home” whenever I travel to my birthplace in Georgia. Home isn’t always a physical location. It’s the family, friends and sense of community that makes a person feel at home. I love Centerville and I love the Dayton area. Today I’m going to take you through why I love this town so much and give you tidbits of why this town is so special.

A Great Place to Buy a Home

The two homes I’ve bought in my lifetime were both located in Centerville. It’s the perfect location to settle down with a family.  The schools are highly sought after, there is a ton of local attractions and dining, and you really get a sense of all 4 seasons. When we were house shopping a few years ago, we stayed within the Centerville area because of its reputation.

If you are interested in buying a home here in Centerville, I highly recommend the realtors at HER Realtors. Our agent that helped us buy our home was not only our former neighbor, but also a professional agent who took the time to listen to our needs for our future home. The purchasing experience was so easy. Having worked in the mortgage industry for the last 14 years, I knew how much was involved behind the scenes.  I never felt that way when it was our turn to buy a home. HER made it simple, quick, and they cared about us as clients.

A lot of people tend to move to this area because of military transfer. Centerville is a great area for families to feel safe, loved, and part of a tight community.  If you are looking for a home here, check out the available listings in Dayton.

Top-Notch Dining

There is no shortage of excellent dining hot spots here in the Centerville/Dayton area. One thing that has impressed me so much about this city is that most people prefer the local establishments versus some of the major chains. Don’t get me wrong, I love my fair share of The Cheesecake Factory, but there’s something special about going to a home-grown location.

Carver’s Steaks and Chops

Why I Love Dayton, Ohio + $25 Gift Certificate Giveaway!
Photo Credit: CarversDayton.com

I’ve never had a bad meal at Carver’s Steaks and Chops. My wife and I love to go grab a quick drink at the bar, or if we are not headed somewhere else, we’ll sit down for a fancy meal.  Carver’s has a great appetizer menu. I highly recommend the Bruschetta, the Calamari, and the Stuffed Portobello Mushroom. My favorite entree is definitely the Whiskey Peppercorn New York Strip. I’ve never had a steak that wasn’t prepared perfectly at Carver’s. So, if you are in the area and have never tried Carver’s, make it a point to head there for your next outing. It’s a little pricey, but for the quality of the food, you really can’t beat it. Like the idea of dining here?  Scroll on down to the bottom of this post and sign up for the giveaway!

Zombie Dogs

Why I Love Dayton, Ohio + $25 Gift Certificate Giveaway!
Photo Credit: Zombie Dogz

If you’re in the mood for unique food, you absolutely have to visit Zombie Dogs. Zombie Dogs started off as a food truck that frequented local businesses, attractions, and parties. It got so famous that they ended up opening a brick and mortar location near the University of Dayton just under a year ago. Ever had peanut butter and apples on your hot dog?  Visit Zombie Dogs for this unique combination. Their menu changes all the time, but they have their staple unique combinations. The guys that own it are not afraid to blow your mind with weird and surprisingly tasty hot dog toppings.

Nelly’s

Why I Love Dayton, Ohio + $25 Gift Certificate Giveaway!
Photo Credit: Trip Advisor.Com

I bet you’ve never had Bolivian food before, right? Nestled right on Main Street in Centerville is this wonderful gem. My wife and I went to Nelly’s Bolivia a few months ago for a quick dinner date, and discovered that it will be on the top of our list of favorite places to eat in the Dayton area. I recommend the Platano Dulce (sweet plantains) and the Charcoal Rotisserie Chicken.

Coco’s Bistro

Why I Love Dayton, Ohio + $25 Gift Certificate Giveaway!
Photo Credit: Trip Advisor

Coco’s Bistro is one of those places you can find in downtown Dayton where there’s a warm and relaxed atmosphere. I love going to Coco’s mainly for their awesome bar, but the food’s pretty good as well. If you are going to venture out to Coco’s for dinner, I highly recommend the Ahi Cerviche for an appetizer. I was never a big fan of cerviche before I tried it at Coco’s, but now it’s one of my favorite picks anywhere I go. For my main dinner entree, I usually go for the Porterhouse chop. I really love steaks and chops, have you noticed yet?

Marion’s Piazza

Why I Love Dayton, Ohio + $25 Gift Certificate Giveaway!

Why I Love Dayton, Ohio + $25 Gift Certificate Giveaway!

Why I Love Dayton, Ohio + $25 Gift Certificate Giveaway!

Why I Love Dayton, Ohio + $25 Gift Certificate Giveaway!

Nothing says Dayton tradition like a visit to Marion’s Piazza. Marion’s has been a staple in the Dayton area for over 50 years. If you want amazing pizza, giant sandwiches, and other Italian specialties, Marion’s is the place to be. We held my 3 year old’s birthday party there a few nights ago and had a blast!

Geez Grill and Pub

Why I Love Dayton, Ohio + $25 Gift Certificate Giveaway!
Photo Credit: Trip Advisor

Nestled in the heart of Centerville, Geez Grill and Pub has been a traditional hot spot for decades. It’s a very warm environment with just about any game you want to watch on flat screens surrounding the bar.  Grab your bowl of popcorn and relax to the delicious pretzel sticks and cheese while catching up with friends and watching the game. In addition to the cheese sticks, my favorite dishes include the salmon burger, a cheese burger with the Brew City fries, and their pizza. The staff here is so attentive and friendly it almost feels like family!  I love this place and definitely call it one of my regular go-to spots around Dayton!

Entertainment and Attractions

The Dayton area is chopped full of endless opportunities to learn about the past, present, and future, as well as participate in entertaining activities. I love living in this area because we can wake up on any given day and there’s a different spot we can go to as a family for entertainment. Here’s a list of some of our favorite spots.

Scene75

Why I Love Dayton, Ohio + $25 Gift Certificate Giveaway!
Photo Credit: Dayton Daily News

Scene75 is a relatively new gigantic indoor entertainment center right beside I-75 north of downtown Dayton. It’s a great place for kids and adults alike to find something to enjoy. Whenever we take the kids, we usually take part in a traditional go-kart race, bumper cars, basketball shoot-out, and glow-in-the-dark mini golf.

Boonshoft Museum of Discovery

If you have kids like I do, and you live in the Dayton area, hopefully by now you’ve discovered the Boonshoft Museum of Discovery.  There is SO MUCH to do at this local museum!  My kids absolutely love everything about this place. We’ll spend a good 2-3 hours here at a time looking at the stars, playing on the playground, checking out some cool animals, watching a science experiment, or simply learning about our area. Definitely a spot you must visit if you are in Dayton!

Why I Love Dayton, Ohio + $25 Gift Certificate Giveaway!

Why I Love Dayton, Ohio + $25 Gift Certificate Giveaway!

Why I Love Dayton, Ohio + $25 Gift Certificate Giveaway!

Why I Love Dayton, Ohio + $25 Gift Certificate Giveaway!

Why I Love Dayton, Ohio + $25 Gift Certificate Giveaway!

Dayton Dragons

There’s always a good time to be had at the Dayton Dragons game!  Come support the Cincinnati Reds’ single A farm team and have a blast doing it.  The Dragons make baseball fun for kids and adults alike. They also have party decks available for work or family gatherings.  Tickets are relatively inexpensive. If you would rather sit in the lawn seats, expect less than $10 per ticket.

Why I Love Dayton, Ohio + $25 Gift Certificate Giveaway!

Belle of Dayton Distillery

Why I Love Dayton, Ohio + $25 Gift Certificate Giveaway!
Photo Credit: DaytonOriginals.org

How many of you can say you’ve seen the wonder that is the distilling process? Last summer, my wife and I got the chance to take a date night and go to the Belle of Dayton Distillery Tour and Tasting.  For $5 per person, this is a great opportunity to not only support a local Dayton business, but to also learn about the fine art of distilling.  You will start off by hearing one of the owners talk about the history of Belle of Dayton, followed by a tasting of about 5 different products.  You will then get to go on a tour to see the barrels as well as the actual distilling and fermenting process.

Why I Love Dayton, Ohio + $25 Gift Certificate Giveaway!

Why I Love Dayton, Ohio + $25 Gift Certificate Giveaway!

Why I Love Dayton, Ohio + $25 Gift Certificate Giveaway!

Education

Centerville is one of the top cities in Ohio in terms of quality education. People move to this area simply for the schools. The schools are all fantastic in Centerville. The teachers care about each student, the buildings are well-maintained, and the quality of education each student receives is top-notch. Did you know that Kirk Herbstreet, former OSU Buckeye and current ESPN College Football Analyst is from Centerville, Ohio?

Live here? What’s your favorite hot spot or activity?

Ok, I’m calling out all of you Dayton locals to speak up about your favorite things to do here in the Dayton area. I know there are places that I didn’t have time to mention today.  What do you like to do?  Where do you like to eat? Sound off in the comments below!

$25 Carver’s Steak and Chops Giveaway

To enter the giveaway for the $25 Carver’s Steaks and Chops Gift Certificate, all you have to do is comment below on this blog post. Please follow the instructions in RaffleCopter below. To increase your chances of winning, you can also follow me on Twitter and visit my Facebook fan page. The giveaway runs from midnight the morning of 5/24/17 through midnight on 6/3/17.  Many thanks to HER Realtors for giving me the opportunity to host this giveaway!  Good luck to you all!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Are you looking for the best affiliate marketing secrets and tips? Here are my 20 best tips for you to become successful at affiliate marketing today.

20 Secrets To Affiliate Marketing Success

This post contains affiliate links

Hey there!  Are you looking to monetize your blog through affiliate marketing and have no clue how to start?  Does it make you feel like a sleazy car salesman? Today’s post is all about understanding exactly what affiliate marketing is and how you can get in the know about the secrets to making a solid income with it.

20 Secrets To Affiliate Marketing Success

What is Affiliate Marketing?

Affiliate marketing, at its most basic definition, is offering a merchant’s products and services on your blog or social media in exchange for a set commission. Some merchants offer a set percentage of the sale, while others offer a flat dollar amount. One of the most popular affiliate marketing companies (and my favorite) is ShareASale. Now, you’ve read my posts about ShareASale in the past, and hopefully know how much I love working with it.

Affiliate marketing can be a win-win for both you and the merchant you’re promoting. Their products get promoted and sales come in, and you earn cash for simply recommending and advertising their products from your site.  Cool, huh?

It’s not a requirement for you to purchase the products that you are promoting on your site, but it REALLY helps provide trust to your readers when they see you using a product you are promoting. The more you use the products you promote, the more knowledge you have that can be taught to your readers to help them become more informed and educated about those products.

My 20 Secrets to Affiliate Marketing Success

20 Secrets To Affiliate Marketing SuccessBe Selective About The Products You Promote: Promote products that are relevant to your blog topics. I wouldn’t promote health food if I run a technology blog, would I?  Don’t just sign up for every program based on the commission rate. If you wouldn’t use the product, don’t promote it

Incorporate Keywords: Most merchants will provide you with special keywords you can use in your posts to help drive search engine traffic your way. If you are having trouble identifying the best keywords to use, contact the representative in charge of the merchant’s affiliate program. More times than not, they will give you suggestions, techniques, and lists of keywords you can use to help you.

Don’t Flood Your Posts With Affiliate Links: Be careful of how many affiliate links you add to your posts.  Adding too many will make you come across as a desperate seller who is not interested in anything else but making a quick buck. My suggestion is no more than 1 affiliate link per 1,000 words.

Do Routine Checks On Your Links: Like any website, URLs can change. Performing routine checks to make sure your links work is crucial to maximizing your income. I highly recommend creating an Excel spreadsheet outlining all the posts that contain the links as well as the URL. Organizing your links makes it much easier to make corrections when the time comes. There is also a nifty online broken link checker you can run to give you a list of all the broken links on your site – not just the affiliate links.

Write More Product Reviews: Product reviews translate very well into sales. Google and other search engines really love reviews because they give readers insight into what they are looking to purchase. Reach out to some of your merchants and ask if they have any sample products they can send you for review and giveaway purposes. All of the affiliate sales I have generated have come from products I’ve reviewed and recommended.

Be Patient: Just like with anything, patience is a virtue. Do not expect immediate results. Keep sticking with your business plan and marketing strategy, and you’ll eventually see sales come through.  This will not happen overnight. Give it time and it’ll happen.

Add Affiliate Links To Old Posts: Don’t forget about your older blog posts. Look through them and find opportunities to insert affiliate links.

Be Aware Of Marketing Trends:  Keep an eye on what’s popular in your niche and what’s selling.  Different products perform differently.  Some may not sell very well, while others tend to sell quickly. If you find the products you are selling aren’t generating into sales after a while, don’t be afraid to make adjustments to your marketing plan.

Increase Your Audience Size:  Reader and subscriber growth is very important in developing a following on your blog.  The more readers you convert into subscribers, the more eyes that are going to read your posts. If you are writing high-quality blog posts, those views are going to translate into more sales down the road. Look for ways to promote your posts in the right places. For example, I am a member of many blogging Facebook groups.  I also run my own group, Blogger Share and Promo Group. Pinterest is also a steady traffic source for me.  I recently invested in Tailwind to manage my pins and ensure I am repinning appropriately.

Network: Affiliate marketing can be intimidating to new affiliates. Look for ways to network with more experienced bloggers to get advice and share tips with you for success. Blogger groups on Facebook are great for networking. Not only do you get the chance to share your own posts, but you get to read other posts and see what’s working for others.

Be Authentic:  Nothing is worse than stumbling upon a blog post where it’s clear that the author is just trying to sell you something. You know, those posts that say they are giving you 10 tips for something, but the whole article is split up with ads, teasers, and affiliate links. Don’t be like this guy! Establishing authenticity is very important.  If readers don’t see you as genuine, it’ll be the last time they ever visit your blog, and you won’t ever get a sale from them.  Be authentic in your product reviews. If you are reviewing an online graphic design service (like I did with my FotoJet review) and you find the service to be terrible, don’t pretend to like it just so that you can convince your readers to purchase it. Be honest, be open, and be trustworthy.

Don’t Promote A Product Only Once: If you really want to establish a solid income from affiliate marketing, you can’t set a link or a banner on a post once and never promote it again. Promote your posts over and over again to get a sustained level of exposure.

Be Creative: Promoting affiliate links is more than just putting a bit of code into your blog, or throwing up a few banners on the sidebar. Get creative with promoting your products. Have an email newsletter? Use it to your advantage to get the word out about your products. Find new and unique ways to get the word out there, and don’t be afraid to shift gears if your current methods aren’t working well.

Tell Your Story:  As is true in anything you are trying to promote or sell, making a connection with your readers is critical to gaining their trust. When you are promoting a product you truly believe in, tell your story.  Make the product’s value to you as personal as possible. For example, if I were trying to sell someone an iPhone, I would talk about how it’s long battery life keeps me from having to lug around my charger every where, or how awesome the camera is (yes, most of my personal images on this blog come from the iPhone 6!). Giving your personal testimony to a product’s value helps your reader understand how purchasing that product can add value to their life as well.

Be Cautious With Banners On Your Sidebar: If you use WordPress, it’s so tempting to throw a bunch of affiliate banners onto the sidebar. I urge you to be very cautious when doing this. The more ads you place on your site, the slower it will be.  You will also come across as only trying to make a quick buck. I have 3 Google Ads in my sidebar and that’s it. When I want to use banners, I put them inside my blog posts, include them in Facebook posts, and use them as images in Pinterest.

Disclose Every Time: You can’t include affiliate links in your blog posts, Facebook posts, or Twitter tweets without disclosing to your readers that they are there, and that if they click on them and purchase a product, you’ll make money off of it.  I know that sounds unnecessary, but it’s actually required by the FTC. If you are promoting an affiliate link in a Facebook post, you can write “Sponsored Post” or “Contains Affiliate Links” in parentheses. For Twitter, I usually use #ad or #affiliate. You must disclose each and every time!  The FTC can and will shut your blog down.  They are focused on protecting the rights of consumers, so if they suspect you are not disclosing, expect for your site to get shut down.

Promote To Family And Friends: Some of the best people to promote your affiliate links to are your own friends and family. Not only will they support you by sharing your posts, or maybe even purchasing something, they are usually very good about talking about it with their friends too. My mom recently bought some books through my Book Outlet affiliate link (this is an affiliate link – BOOM!  See how easy that was?!). Who knows, they may share so may times that your post will go viral!

Pay Attention To A Merchant’s Commission Structure: When you sign up to become an affiliate for a merchant’s products, you will have access to its commission structure.  Will you get paid a flat rate per sale, a percentage per sale, or only for leads? ShareASale’s affiliate application will tell you exactly what to expect.  So read it, or better yet, write it down.

Take Advantage Of Data Feeds: Product data feeds are simply files, usually in a format such as Excel, text, html, etc., that contain all of the information about your merchant’s products. The purpose of these files is to help you promote and sell products.  You, the affiliate, can take the information from the data feed and build individual pages for each product, or put more than one product on a page.  The advantage to having the data feed information is that you can get your site more exposure through search engines.  Most of the merchants you will find on ShareASale will have a tab containing their data feed products.

Have Fun: The more fun you have being creative in the promotion of your affiliate products, the more the fun will translate to your readers. Don’t be boring! Make each blog post interesting and find interesting ways to make your affiliate links fun. I know this is a challenge, but the better you present your information, the better the result will be in the end.

If you have more questions about affiliate marketing, feel free to email me at jeremy@goaskyourdaddy.com

For more information on Affiliate Marketing, see my other related posts:

Shop Blurb Online

Creating Amazing Photo Books With Blurb

Creating Amazing Photo Books With Blurb

This post contains affiliate links. I will receive a small commission if you make a purchase through them.

Photo books are so important to have when you want to preserve family memories. Blurb gives you the opportunity to make them not only with high quality, but with attractive designs. When I see my family in a photo book that I’ve created, it reminds me of how wonderful our family is and how much fun we have together. I’m really proud to be an affiliate for Blurb, and only recommend products I use and love.

I’ve been meaning to compile the over 10,000 photos I currently have on my camera role and create numerous projects out of them. Photo books seem to be all the rage these days, and are becoming increasingly popular gifts. Not only do I have plans to create and give away photo books to grandparents and relatives, I’m working on my very own eBook, “The Ultimate Blogger’s Handbook.”  I’m more than halfway through writing the book and am now in the process of looking for a reliable service to help me design it.

One of the best services I found was a company called Blurb.  Blurb specializes in custom photo books, trade books, magazines, and eBooks. The great thing about Blurb is that you do the work using their tools. You can either use Blurb’s tool, BookWright online or use other products such as Adobe InDesign.  If you are an Adobe Lightroom user, there is a Blurb-powered creation tool built into the software.

Shop Blurb Online

What really caught my eye when I was researching more about Blurb was their PDF to book formatting feature. Using their specifications calculator, you can turn your PDF into any size book you want. Neat, huh?  Since I already have most of my eBook written in Microsoft Word, converting it to PDF and using Blurb’s book formatting calculator will be a feature I’ll use right away.

Blurb also has their own apps for iPhone and iPad. You can choose from 3 different page layouts, add captions, and auto flow your images to create an amazing picture book! In addition to IOS support, Blurb also provides you with downloadable professional templates to choose from to help you get started. If you are simply overwhelmed with the entire process, Blurb even has professionals on staff to help you complete your project! Or, if you are headed in the self-publish direction, you can complete your own book for as little as $14.99 – not a bad price at all!

Self-Publishing Services

Blurb offers many services to help you as you self-publish your project including:

Photo Book Services

Blurb offers just about any kind of photo book to suit your needs including:

Popular Book Types

Here’s a list of popular book types made through Blurb:

  • Food and cookbooks
  • Photography
  • Memoirs
  • Children’s books
  • Portfolios
  • Business books
  • Novels and poetry

Current Blurb Promotions

Join the Blurb Affiliate Program

If you are blogger looking to join another affiliate program, Blurb is a great one to join. Simply click here and complete the application through ShareASale.

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Amazing ShareASale Merchant Programs You Must Join

Amazing ShareASale Merchant Programs You Must Join

This post contains affiliate links. I will receive a small commission if you make a purchase through them. 

If you are new to ShareASale, it can be overwhelming to figure out which merchant programs to choose. Every merchant offers different commission and bonus structures, but ShareASale makes it easy to read and understand all of the fine print before you even sign up. I’ve compiled a list of many of my favorite merchants along with their commission structure. Hopefully this is a helpful tool for you if you are just starting out with affiliate marketing. 

1stinCoffee – Sale Commission: 7.00%

A Gift Personalized – Sale Commission: 15.00%

Animoto – Sale Commission: 20.00

Avahost.net – Sale Commission: $50.00

BaseballRampage.com – 9% depending on store

Blurb – Sale Commission: 15.00% new customer transactions, 5% returning customer. $1 per book for any book store sales (http://www.blurb.com/bookstore), $10 affiliate referrals: Invite your website-owning and blogging friends to join Blurb’s affiliate program and earn $10 for each friend who’s approved

Book Outlet – Sale Commission: 10.00%, Lead Commission $0.25

Buycoolshirts.com – Sale Commission: 10.00%

Candy Club – Sale Commission: $23.50

CellSavers – Commission Rate: $10.00 per lead, $10 affiliate referrals: Invite your website-owning and blogging friends to join the CellSavers affiliate program and earn $10 for each friend who’s approved.

Checks Superstore – 25% Commission,VIP Commission Available. 2-Tier Bonus – $2 for Referrals Using the Join Text Link

ComboInk – 25% Commission on all products

Cricut – Earn 12% base commission and 15% on orders $100+, $10 affiliate referrals: Invite your website-owning and blogging friends to join Cricut’s affiliate program and earn $10 for each friend who’s approved.

Custom Ink – Sale Commission: 7.00%

Dancewear Solutions – Sale Commission: 6.00%

Dealflicks – Sale Commission: $2.50

FMTC – Sale Commission: 10.00%, Lead Commission $1.00, Referring users to FMTC’s Publisher Toolkit will earn you commission of either 100% of the first month’s payment (one time) or 15% of their annual payment (one time), by referring other qualified affiliates to their program you can earn $1.

GlassesShop.com – Earn 12-17% commission on each purchase plus performance incentives

Grammarly – Sale Commission: $20.00, Lead Commission $0.20, receive up to $20 per premium account upgrade

Gymboree – Commission: 8%

Hardware World – 6% Commission, 2-Tier Bonus – $2 for Referrals Using the Join Text Link

Identity Guard – Sale Commission: 35.00%, Lead Commission $.01

Just Shoes for Kids – Sale Commission: 12.00%

Kidorable – Sale Commission: 10.00%, Get 10% off on all orders

Little Passports – $15 PER SALE commission rate on all monthly payment and 12 month plans, $8 PER SALE commission rate on all 3 month and 6 month plans

Mixbook – Sale Commission: 15%

My App Builder – Sale Commission: 100.00%, Lead Commission $10.00

Pen Boutique Ltd. – Sale Commission: 5.00%, up to generous 20% commissions per sale

PicoBrew – Sale Commission: 10.00%

StuffedAnimals.com –  15% commission

Swap.com – Sale Commission: 15.00%

Tailwind – 15% recurring commission, $0.25 per lead commissions for current Tailwind users, volume-based bonuses + first sale bonus, commission bonuses for high-impact actions (writing reviews, creating a video, case study, etc.)

The California Wine Club – Sale Commission: 15.00%

Virtual Sheet Music, Inc. – Sale Commission: 25.00%

Wyzant – Lead Commission $6.00