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Step by Step Guide to Using Facebook Ads to Promote Affiliate Products

Recently I received an email from a company that I am an affiliate. They were offering 40% off on their Kettlebells for just 3 days. I jumped in and ran a Facebook Ad for 48 hours and earned over $70. Here are the step by steps instructions on what I did to promote this product.

Becoming an Affiliate

I am going to start off stating the obvious. In order for this tactic to work, you must be an affiliate for some product. In this example I am going to show you how this worked for DragonDoor.

DragonDoor is a company that I have been an affiliate for over a year. The gentleman that started the company is Pavel Tsatsouline.

Pavel is from the former Soviet Union. He use to train the Russian special forces. His training was centered around a kettlebell.

When Pavel came to US he brought the kettlebell with him and started to introduce it in the US. People who are into fitness lashed onto the kettlebell because it is an effective full body workout.

Kettlebell Promotion

On April 9th I received the following email from DragonDoor

Dear Jennifer,

Dragon Door has announced a special sale celebrating 75,000 followers on Facebook! Get 40% off RKC Kettlebells from Wednesday April 9 until Friday April 11, 11:59pm CST . You must use code: FB75K

Now I did not actually read that email until the morning of April 10th. So I have already missed one day of the 3 day sale.

The good news is that I get up at 4:45 AM so I had the ability to create an ad before I left for work that day.

Creating the graphic for my Facebook Ad

On the evening of April 9th I actually downloaded a Photoshop file that was created by Teespring. It is a free file that has some create button, backgrounds and layouts.

If you use Photoshop then you need to download this free file.

Note: if you use a graphic program other than Photoshop then don’t ask me if your graphic program will open this Photoshop file. Photoshop is the only graphic program I use

When you open up that free graphic file from Teespring, you will see a very nice layout that has a light green background with a white border.

I took this and then added a picture of 3 kettlebells. I modified the text in their button to show 40% off until April 11th Hurry. I changed the text on the front to simply say “40% off kettlebells”.

It took me about 2 minutes to produce the graphic for the Facebook Ad since I was using the resources that came from the free graphic file from Teespring.

Here is my Facebook Ad that I created

kettlebell facebook graphic

Now that I had my graphic I just need to create my ad on Facebook.

Creating my Facebook Ad

I am not going to give you a course on how to create Facebook Ads because I am assuming you know already how to do this.

Facebook Ads now have 3 tiers for Campaign – Ad Sets and Ads.

Creating the Campaign

I created a Campaign and called it DragonDoor Kettlebells – CTW. The CTW is my shorthand for clicks to website.

When you create a new campaign you tell it what is the purpose of the campaign. Clicks to website is just one choice you can select. I want to drive traffic to DragonDoor so this is why I selected Clicks to Website.

Creating the Ad Set

Next I created an Ad Set which I appropriately enough called “DragonDoor”.

Since there is a time limit for this promotion I made sure the campaign ran from April 10th 5:00 AM to April 11th 10:59PM.

The promotion ended at 11:00 PM CST on April 11th which is why I chose to run the ad up until 10:59 PM on April 11th.

I budgeted $10 per day for my ad spend.

Creating the Ad

The last step is creating the Ad. Here are the parameters I used to create the ad:

Dark post
Newsfeed Ads only
United States only
Age 22-45
male
exact interests of Dragon Door and Crossfit
behavior – purchased fitness products

My target audience was 72.000 people. Here is the Ad I created.
kettlebell facebook ad

Results

I spent a grand total of $10.62 on Facebook Ad during the 48 hours that my ad ran. I earned $71.25 in commissions from Dragon Door.

Net profit was $60.63.

This is not bad when you consider it took me about 3 minutes to create the graphic and about the same amount of time to create the Facebook Ad.

For about 10 minutes of work I generated $60.63 in profit in less than 48 hours.

Let me know if you have used Facebook Ads to promote affiliate products? What were your results?

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by Jennifer Bland

I am an Entrepreneur. Mountain Climber. Neil Diamond fanatic. World traveler. MBA grad. Soon to be permanently retired from the ratrace.My website is a diary of strategies that I have used to make money online. I share what I have learned to help others.

37 comments… add one
  1. More great tips, Jennifer! I’m definitely trying this one out for myself. I do have one question (maybe two):

    I know some affiliate program prohibit search campaigns. Have any run into any that prohibit social campaigns? Also, have you had any issues with Facebook allowing affiliate links in ads?

    Reply
    1. Angie,

      Most of the programs for which I am an affiliate have a restriction on using Google Adwords to promote their product. None of them (to the best of my knowledge) have a restriction on using Facebook to promote your link.

      I have not had any problems with Facebook with my ads.

      Jennifer

      Reply
      1. Fabulous! Thanks for the followup.

        Reply
        1. My pleasure!

          Reply
  2. Great post! How do you target those who purchased fitness products?

    Reply
  3. Sara,

    You look under behaviors. You will see buying habits and one of the option is people who have purchased fitness related products.

    Jennifer

    Reply
    1. Thanks for the reply, Jennifer. It’s so strange – I don’t have it. All I get is “digital activities”, and under that – “online spenders”.

      Reply
      1. Sara,

        I went back to my Facebook ad to make sure and these are the 2 behaviors that I selected:

        Behaviors: Fitness or Active credit card user

        Hope that helps.

        Jennifer

        Reply
        1. Hi Jennifer,

          I have also seen in behavior category of FB Ads.Like Sara there is no options of Fitness or Active Card User under behavior field.

          Reply
          1. Jhonty,

            Then that feature might not be available yet in your country.

            Jennifer

  4. Can you use amazon affiliate links in facebook ads?

    Reply
  5. John,

    I believe the answer to that questions is yes. If you are an Amazon affiliate and you have the affiliate strip enabled, when you are looking at any product on Amazon you see where you can “link to this page”. This is where you would normally pull your affiliate link to that product.

    If you look to the right of that you will see a “share” link where you can share that product on Facebook or Twitter. Once you shared it you can then promote that post or run an ad.

    Jennifer

    Reply
  6. Wow very cool. I’m just starting to learn FB ads so this is helpful. 2 quick questions,

    Do you usually split test mobile vs desktop traffic?
    Also how did you select an AND interest “exact interests of Dragon Door and Crossfit?” Mine only does an OR statement.

    Thanks!

    Reply
    1. Stephen,

      Wow, you have a sharp eye to catch the AND vs OR. According to Facebook, if you use a behavior it will create an OR for each behavior listed and then this list is AND to anything else selected like interests. In fact here is Facebook’s exact wording:

      Behavior targeting is defined in an adgroup’s targeting spec field. To define behavior targeting, use the behaviors targeting option. All behaviors will have a logical-OR relationship with each other, and a logical-AND with any other targeting option defined in the targeting spec.

      You can find exact details at
      https://developers.facebook.com/docs/reference/ads-api/behavior-targeting/

      Hope that helps.

      Jennifer

      Reply
  7. Hi Jennifer,

    I can’t find the reference now, but I think you mentioned that you were able to get cheap clicks with a larger audience. Going broader may reduce your ROI, though. Can you expand on what you meant there?

    What bidding model do you use, such as CPC, CPM, or oCPM?

    I hope you continue to do well with Fb advertising!

    Reply
    1. Bryan,

      I have found that small audiences result in lower CPC. If you watched Don Wilson’s first video you noticed that he would put in all of his interests and then he would remove the largest two leaving others.

      I have always used oCPM. I am going to start split testing with others.

      Jennifer

      Reply
  8. Hi Jennifer,
    that’s an interesting read… And it depresses me a bit! Not sure if you’re aware that FB ads don’t work the same in every country. Here in the UK, we don’t get nearly as many options of targeting as you US folks do. For example, we only get limited (and mostly useless) behaviour options, that don’t include all the purchase behaviour related things that you and Don Wilson are talking about. However, I may give affiliate marketing on facebook a go anyway.

    Reply
  9. I have a question. Do you need a fan page to run ads? Can I promote affiliate links without being attached to a business/fan page?

    Reply
    1. Cassi,

      If you want to run newsfeed ads then you will need a fanpage. If you want to only run right hand side ads only then you do not need a fan page. To promote affiliate links with a fan page you can only do it thru right hand side ads. But you can create a fan page with no posts to it and run ads to the newsfeed through it.

      Jennifer

      Jennifer

      Reply
  10. Hi Jennifer,
    what a blog you have hear – so much good knowledge and so kind of you too share. I am looking to get into facebook marketing. My main question is with campaigns can I direct link from an affiliate network such as maxbounty/peerfly etc…
    I know some I can such as teesprings, but not sure about others? any clues you can give would be much appreciated.

    thanks again

    Reply
    1. Aaron,

      From what I understand you can link out to any website. But what I would recommend doing is to install some sort of redirect like prettylinks on one of your WordPress websites and send the link to your prettylink on your website which then redirects to your affiliate site automatically. This gives you better tracking data on the success of your ads.

      Jennifer

      Reply
  11. Jennifer,

    Great post. I am getting into affiliate marketing backwards in a way. I have been using facebook ads to promote my own products, but would like to try affiliate marketing in my spare time. Where can I find great offers like the one from dragon door? How do you go about choosing good ones?

    Best,
    Lucas

    Reply
    1. Lucas,

      You can easily find offers for affiliate programs by first finding out if products you use have affiliate programs. It is easier to promote something that you use and know and love than it is to promote something that you have never used. Thought don’t just limit yourself to products that you have used. When you go driving look at products being sold and in stores and being advertised.

      Jennifer

      Reply
  12. Jennifer,

    Great post. I am getting into affiliate marketing backwards in a way. I have been using facebook ads to promote my own products, but would like to try affiliate marketing in my spare time. Where can I find great offers like the one from dragon door? How do you go about choosing good ones?

    Also, am I allowed to use this method with amazon affiliate links? Or will amazon ban me?

    Best,
    Lucas

    Reply
    1. Lucas,

      Just answered your question above.

      Jennifer

      Reply
  13. Hi Jennifer

    Great simple, step by step case study!

    Facebook advertising is something I have wanted to start for a long time but never have the time to sit down and actually start experimenting with.

    Can I ask, have you tried promoting dating offers on FB? Apparently, people where/are making a killing promoting these types of offers on FB. Its a very easy sell.

    Reply
    1. Tony,

      I have not tried promoting dating offers on Facebook so I cannot give you any feedback on that topic. With millions of users daily accessing Facebook it is easy to see why people like to advertise on this platform.

      Jennifer

      Reply
  14. Hi Jennifer,

    As you replied Lucas “It is easier to promote something that you use and know and love than it is to promote something that you have never used. Thought don’t just limit yourself to products that you have used. When you go driving look at products being sold and in stores and being advertised.”
    I am from Pakistan.Can you please guide if I have to search for popular products to promote through fb Ads which are high in demand let say for women in NY,Chicago,Miami etc then how can i check them.

    Reply
    1. Jhonty,

      It does not matter where you live because you have items and products that you use and would recommend in your country. Now if the exact same brand is not available on Amazon then find one that is equivalent and promote it. You can use Audience Insights to check location when you set targeting to see if there is a large percentage of women in selected cities or states.

      Jennifer

      Reply
  15. Thanks Jennifer for your response.
    Here in Pakistan people are not much aware of online buying and mostly avoid online shopping.Actually i want to ask if i have to target audience in U.S then can you guide how i can check the latest products which are contemporary and popular in (men and women).Is there any site or online way to check such trends for searching.One is which you highlight that a 4 star product on amazon.Can you suggest more ways 🙂
    Thanks in anticipation

    Reply
    1. Jhonty,

      You might want to ask yourself why you are limiting yourself to only new products? With new products it is a crap shoot as to whether or not they will be popular. Here is something you can use to judge products. The rule of thumb is that on Amazon they sell 50 copies of a product for every 1 review left for that product. If you find a product with hundreds or even thousands of reviews then you know that product is selling well. That is how you can find products to promote.

      Jennifer

      Reply
  16. Jennifer,

    I wanted to be able to AND 2 behaviors on facebook. For example, to market to people that are online buyers and own an iphone 6. But like it was said before the default is OR. How do I market to both people that spend online AND have an iphone 6 instead of have an iphone 6 OR spend online. So I’m looking to AND 2 or more behaviors. The AND option would give me a much better targetted list because if they have an iphone 6 and don’t spend online it doesn’t do me any good and if they spend online but don’t have an iphone 6 it doesn’t do me any good. But if they have both behaviors they are much more likely to buy my product.

    Do I have to be a developer to change this or is there some other way?

    Reply
    1. Brian,

      Right now the only way to do an AND in Facebook ad using the ad manager is to use behaviors. According to Facebook the use of behaviors will AND with your interest. So if your interest was iPhone6 and you have behavior of online buyer then this will be an AND. The only way to day with ad manager to get an AND is to add behavior. If you have two interests then this would be an OR. There are PMD developers that are offering access to AND through the API but to get that feature you have to purchase their product.

      Jennifer

      Reply
  17. HI, how and where do you find affiliate products ?

    Reply
    1. Arunas,

      I try to first pick products that I am familiar with. Just using that criteria alone you could easily find 100 products that you use on a daily basis to promote.

      Jennifer

      Reply
  18. Do you need to have a separate Pages in FB to do these ads? I would prefer not to do them under my direct name as I am a licensed professional. Also, could you review the process again? Many thanks, Love your blog!

    Reply
    1. Arlene,

      If you want to run Facebook Ads in the newsfeed then you will need a page. You cannot run them from your personal Facebook profile but instead need to create a page. You can create a page on anything for example “Georgia Bulldog Fan Page” or “Underwater Basket Weaving Page” and then run ads from them.

      Jennifer

      Reply

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