When planning your affiliate content marketing strategy, remember to match it to your audience so that your posts are relevant and attract readers. Otherwise, if you target hypothetical leads, you might not even be close. The best practice to that end is the User Persona-Based approach that allows you to determine the average reader and ways to catch their attention.
Start working on content marketing for affiliate websites by defining your average reader. The User Persona is not a real person, but rather a collective image, resulting from the proper marketing research on your audience’s characteristics and expectations:
Look at the screen below to see an example of a User Persona for travel content marketing affiliate programs for a better understanding:
Getting such data is crucial in content marketing regardless of the niche you work in. Moreover, the portrait of a User Persona is critical on the first stage of content production when it is being designed. Otherwise, it might cost a fortune to correct errors and build alternatives because of the irrelevant topic you’ve chosen.
A User Persona approach to content marketing for affiliate programs is a win-win solution allowing you to correctly address your customers’ needs and expectations. It helps attract attention and provides better traffic for relevant affiliate links inside the post.
Getting closer to your audience naturally allows you to hit more targets, and costs gradually reduce. On the flip side, choosing topics randomly might not provoke the same level of responsiveness. Now let’s see how to implement this strategy in your case.
To turn content writing for affiliate marketing into a money-making strategy, try to create your reader’s portrait including their bio, hobbies, occupation, aspirations and possible challenges. Below, you’ll see an example of a User Persona for a travel website for backpackers. Remember that every website has a different audience, and you’ll need to conduct research to find your Persona.
To make affiliate marketing content writing cost-effective, you should start with the basic information about your readers: their sex, age, nationality, marital and social status, etc.
Let’s try to identify the average reader of our travel blog about backpacking. We are going to target Australia, where backpacking accounts for 13% of the total tourism.
How old is our average reader? According to statistics, this type of traveling is especially popular among people 20–29 years old, as you can see in the picture below.
Therefore, our User Persona might be around 24 years old. At this age, people are still studying or are early in their careers. As for the gender, 75% of women are fond of backpacking compared to 67% of men, so we’ll dwell on a female traveler. Since the average marriage age for Australian women is 30 years old, our User Persona is likely to not have a family of her own just yet.
Top destinations for young female backpackers from Australia are Brazil, Iceland, Chile, Fiji and Norway, with a particular interest to Latin America. With this in mind, let’s sketch it to revise all data.
|24||Female||Australia||Not married||Student / Assistant||Latin America|
To be able to better address the expectations and needs of our User Persona, let’s identify their background, skills and occupation. Young people between 20 and 29 years old are likely to continue their studies or be at the starting line of their careers. For example, they might work as assistants in a wide range of fields.
With the growing number of freelancers in all the spheres and omnipresent internet, we suppose that our User Persona is likely to work online or be engaged in casual, short-term work in private firms, thus having more flexibility to plan traveling.
Hobbies are no less important than other factors when compiling a User Persona portrait. Apart from general hobbies such as music, travel and food, Australians are also keen on reading/writing, watching sports and the arts to name a few. How can this information be useful for you? It might help choose a topic to write about that we’ll discuss later.
An effective affiliate marketing content strategy requires you to identify the key problems of your readers so you know what to address. For example, when targeting backpackers, promoting luxury hotels would not be efficient and provide conversions. Backpackers usually look for more affordable lodging with relative comfort, as well as cheap flights.
So, one of the goals might be to reduce traveling and accommodation expenses. For example, hostels are most popular with young backpackers that travel with friends or relatives. So, you can safely create content that will help book hotel stays and flights for an affordable price.
What goals might a young backpacker have that you can address in your travel blog? It all depends on their personality: some seek nature and privacy, while others might be interested in visiting places of interest or volunteering along the way.
Readers keen on being out in nature will appreciate lists of parks, natural wonders and the best hiking routes. People who volunteer while traveling would like a compilation of the most exciting opportunities to meet other travelers and lend a hand in exchange for food and a place to stay. Finally, tourists planning on visiting sights and diving into the local culture will be looking for passes, discounts and relevant lists of places to see.
Where are our readers likely to seek out information, and what kind of topics will catch their attention? Great answers to these questions might come from doing keyword research based on geolocation. For Australian backpackers, the relevant sources of information might be Lonely Planet, the Youth Hostels Association (YHA), STA Travel, Oz Experience or TNTmagazine to name a few. We will pick this up later when exploring topics that might be interesting for our User Persona.
Now, let’s summarize the portrait we’ve drawn. To make it easier, let’s give a name to our User Persona. For an Australian girl, a common name might be Charlotte and that’s what we’ll call her.
Now, you can create valuable content for your audience with the help of your User Persona. Try this approach when choosing topics, writing a post and establishing priorities in your work.
Let’s go back to the resources that our User Persona is likely to read and try to find articles that could catch their attention.
So, one of the great websites with relevant topics might be Lonely Planet. Below, there are some topics matching our User Persona’s interest in backpacking, traveling on a budget and their favorite destinations:
These posts can be your inspiration when coming up with ideas for your own blog. You can also explore other web resources that your User Persona is likely to read and see what materials are of interest there.
Naturally, you shouldn’t just copy these posts, but rather use them as a starting point. For example, if “Six smartphone apps for budget travel” seems to be a relevant topic, you can cover some other apps not presented on Lonely Planet in your article, and so on.
As for the writing itself, a User Persona approach can help choose the right style and vocabulary. It can be dynamic and colorful or contain relevant terms and be strictly informative instead.
Let’s ask our User Persona – Charlotte. Taking into account her age, you are free to use appropriate slang and make your text expressive. Also, why not pay attention to historical background when describing sights and natural wonders, considering Charlotte’s interest in art and history.
A User Persona allows defining the points that are crucial for your articles to be relevant. In some cases, it might be delivering visuals or adding useful links.
For example, backpackers would appreciate maps with popular routes or, in contrast, the least explored itineraries. You can add links to the best affordable accommodations to help book their trip or link to the best online stores with hiking and camping gear.
To take another example, if you target photographers, high-quality visuals is a must as well as mentions of equipment and footage tips.
Certainly, implementing the User Persona approach takes time. However, this effort is going to pay off fast. If you already run an affiliate marketing blog, start by analyzing your audience with the help of relevant tools such as Google Analytics or conducting a survey.
Alternatively, if you are just planning to create a blog, explore the audience of potential competitors in the niche. User Persona can be a great tool whether you need to adjust come content or come up with a whole blogging strategy.
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This definition provides for a wide range of personal identifiers to constitute personal data, including name, identification number, location data or online identifier, reflecting changes in technology and the way organisations collect information about people. The definition incorporates, where applicable, the definitions provided in General Data Protection Regulation.
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