December 12, 2022

Affiliate marketing 101 with Pat Flynn

If you’ve got an audience, from a podcast, a list of email subscribers, or just a large following of superfans on social media, affiliate marketing is a no-brainer.
December 12, 2022

Affiliate marketing 101 with Pat Flynn

If you’ve got an audience, from a podcast, a list of email subscribers, or just a large following of superfans on social media, affiliate marketing is a no-brainer.
December 12, 2022
Marilyn Moser
In this article
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What type of content do you primarily create?

Videos
Podcasts
Social media clips
Transcriptions
Start editing audio & video
This makes the editing process so much faster. I wish I knew about Descript a year ago.
Matt D., Copywriter
Sign up

What type of content do you primarily create?

Videos
Podcasts
Social media clips
Transcriptions

Pat Flynn is a fabulously successful creator and bestselling author with a great back story who basically makes a living sharing his insights, his workflow, his secrets, and his experience with other creators. 

He does that in lots of ways — through his YouTube channel, the Smart Passive Income blog, the Smart Passive Income Podcast, and on and on. His content is built around helping you create passive income, but there’s a lot of value there, even if you’re more focused on making something great than on building an online business.

If you’re not familiar, passive income is just what it sounds like — it’s money you make without active work, a sort of set-it-and-forget-it business model. Think publishing online courses, starting a drop-shipping store, and doing affiliate marketing — that is, generating an income stream from promoting someone else’s product or service to your audience. It’s a business idea that’s a no-brainer — if you’ve got an audience, from a podcast, a list of email subscribers, or just a large following of superfans on social media.

Pat Flynn gets his affiliate marketing income, in part, from Descript — his Overdub video has been viewed more than a million times.

We decided to ask Pat for some basic advice on affiliate marketing. We emailed our questions, and his responses are worth reading for anybody looking to build their affiliate income. Here you go.

How has affiliate marketing added value to your workflow?

Affiliate marketing allows me to share products that are helpful to my audience AND get paid for it. I typically will share helpful items anyway, and the income that comes from the recommendations is just an amazing bonus on top of that.

How do you decide which products to add to your affiliate networking?

I only promote products that I've used and that I know will provide value to my audience. We have to realize that affiliate marketing is a service because (if you do it correctly) we're helping to reduce the noise that's out there for our audience. We play expert CURATOR in the process, and that is of value because you're saving your audience time and, ultimately, money. Sharing products that you're not familiar with but have a great commission might make you money in the short term, but over time your audience begins to realize that you're in it just for the money and may begin looking elsewhere for help and recommendations.

It's important to know what the goals of your audience are. The product recommendations should always support that journey for them.

What are some creative ways you've used Descript in your affiliate marketing efforts?

I've used Descript for creating and editing podcasts that have products mentioned in them. I've used Descript to create videos for YouTube that show the use of and benefit of specific products I've recommended (especially in the podcasting space, where I share different software and hardware I use to produce a show). Ideally, sharing your process of how to do something and then inserting the product recommendations as a natural "this is what I used to help and how it helped me" becomes a very organic, non-sleazy, or salesy way to approach affiliate marketing, one that you could actually get thanked for! Descript helps make that easier by making content creation a breeze.

What are a few starter tips you'd advise for someone just getting started with affiliate marketing?

1. If you're not sure what to promote, start thinking about the tools and products YOU use. Sometimes we don't even realize the amount of things we use that could be helpful to our audience as well.

2. In addition, ask your audience this question (it works well on social media): what's one thing you recently bought that has really helped you with (insert your niche goal or your audience’s here)? You'll get a list of items that at least should be on your radar that you can begin researching and potentially using too. Some of your audience is already buying those items; now, you can be the one to amplify that and share that recommendation with even more people!

3. Share a story of transformation around the products you promote. You're not creating a commercial; you're creating context around how this may or may not be of use to your readers, listeners, and viewers. How hard was the task before, and now, using this new product, how much easier is it?

Marilyn Moser
Creator Partner Manager at Descript
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Affiliate marketing 101 with Pat Flynn

Pat Flynn on a computer screen surrounded by piles of money

Pat Flynn is a fabulously successful creator and bestselling author with a great back story who basically makes a living sharing his insights, his workflow, his secrets, and his experience with other creators. 

He does that in lots of ways — through his YouTube channel, the Smart Passive Income blog, the Smart Passive Income Podcast, and on and on. His content is built around helping you create passive income, but there’s a lot of value there, even if you’re more focused on making something great than on building an online business.

If you’re not familiar, passive income is just what it sounds like — it’s money you make without active work, a sort of set-it-and-forget-it business model. Think publishing online courses, starting a drop-shipping store, and doing affiliate marketing — that is, generating an income stream from promoting someone else’s product or service to your audience. It’s a business idea that’s a no-brainer — if you’ve got an audience, from a podcast, a list of email subscribers, or just a large following of superfans on social media.

Pat Flynn gets his affiliate marketing income, in part, from Descript — his Overdub video has been viewed more than a million times.

We decided to ask Pat for some basic advice on affiliate marketing. We emailed our questions, and his responses are worth reading for anybody looking to build their affiliate income. Here you go.

Remove all your “ums” and “uhs” with a click, correct your voiceover by typing, and get studio-quality sound wherever you record. Check out our
Tools that work for creators.

How has affiliate marketing added value to your workflow?

Affiliate marketing allows me to share products that are helpful to my audience AND get paid for it. I typically will share helpful items anyway, and the income that comes from the recommendations is just an amazing bonus on top of that.

How do you decide which products to add to your affiliate networking?

I only promote products that I've used and that I know will provide value to my audience. We have to realize that affiliate marketing is a service because (if you do it correctly) we're helping to reduce the noise that's out there for our audience. We play expert CURATOR in the process, and that is of value because you're saving your audience time and, ultimately, money. Sharing products that you're not familiar with but have a great commission might make you money in the short term, but over time your audience begins to realize that you're in it just for the money and may begin looking elsewhere for help and recommendations.

It's important to know what the goals of your audience are. The product recommendations should always support that journey for them.

What are some creative ways you've used Descript in your affiliate marketing efforts?

I've used Descript for creating and editing podcasts that have products mentioned in them. I've used Descript to create videos for YouTube that show the use of and benefit of specific products I've recommended (especially in the podcasting space, where I share different software and hardware I use to produce a show). Ideally, sharing your process of how to do something and then inserting the product recommendations as a natural "this is what I used to help and how it helped me" becomes a very organic, non-sleazy, or salesy way to approach affiliate marketing, one that you could actually get thanked for! Descript helps make that easier by making content creation a breeze.

What are a few starter tips you'd advise for someone just getting started with affiliate marketing?

1. If you're not sure what to promote, start thinking about the tools and products YOU use. Sometimes we don't even realize the amount of things we use that could be helpful to our audience as well.

2. In addition, ask your audience this question (it works well on social media): what's one thing you recently bought that has really helped you with (insert your niche goal or your audience’s here)? You'll get a list of items that at least should be on your radar that you can begin researching and potentially using too. Some of your audience is already buying those items; now, you can be the one to amplify that and share that recommendation with even more people!

3. Share a story of transformation around the products you promote. You're not creating a commercial; you're creating context around how this may or may not be of use to your readers, listeners, and viewers. How hard was the task before, and now, using this new product, how much easier is it?

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