Nov 16

3 Ways to Attract and Retain Affiliates

Affiliate marketing isn’t the same way it was a decade ago when there was a lot less competition and wider margins. Now it’s harder than ever to create an affiliate program that people want to promote, and it can also be very costly. With that said, throwing an affiliate program up for your web sites or online store simply won’t cut it. You need to get out there, recruit affiliates, keep them happy and offer them what others aren’t.

In this article, I am going to break down some of the most important ways for an affiliate program to attract and retain affiliate marketers. With so many ad networks and revenue generation methods out there, it’s now harder than ever to keep affiliates active and happy.

Do follow the methods below and you will see long term success with not only your affiliate program in general, but also motivation, drive and attention from your affiliates:

1. Be Active in Recruiting and Treat Affiliates Like People, Not Numbers

As an affiliate marketer for over many years, I can tell you that there is nothing worse to veteran affiliate marketers than getting treated like a number, especially when you can push more volume than the average affiliate.

Ad networks and affiliate program managers need to take the time to cater to their top affiliates and make them feel wanted. Instead of sending out automated and mass mailings to all of your affiliates with your latest ad copy and top performing offers, take the time to send individual emails out, be personable and make yourself available.

2. Reward Active Affiliates with Bonuses & Prizes

One incentive that many networks find work well is they offer monthly tier bonuses or contests for their affiliates. Some affiliate marketers prefer cash prizes, while others will strive to earn enough rewards points to get free bonus prizes such as gaming systems, gift cards, sports tickets or even bigger prizes.

3. Affiliate Managers Need to Make Themselves Available At All Times

A growing trend in the world of affiliate marketing is that your contacts need to be able almost 24 hours a day. With many affiliate networks and programs, the affiliate manager is making a commission or bonus based off the performance of their affiliate’s marketing efforts.

Since most affiliate marketers are running ad campaigns 24 hours a day, being able to get in contact with their affiliate manager is extremely important. If not by instant messenger chat, Skype or email, top affiliates should have a direct phone line for their affiliates, and all other affiliates in a network or program should at least have an email support system with a max contact delay of 12 hours.

In the End, It’s All about Your Affiliates

As you can see, there are plenty of ways to entice and cater affiliates to join your affiliate program. It doesn’t matter if you decide to go with an affiliate network, custom solution or others, what matters is how you treat your affiliates and create a program that works for them. Your affiliate program is only as good as the product that is being promote.

Take care of your affiliates and make sure that you continually focus your efforts on increasing overall conversions on your site and landing pages.

Apr 04

5 Ways to Improve Your Communication Skills

Effective communication skills are fundamental to success in many aspects of life. Many jobs require strong communication skills and socially people with improved communication skills usually enjoy better interpersonal relationships with friends and family.

Effective communication is a key interpersonal skill and by learning how we can improve our communication has many benefits.

Communication is a two way process so improving communication involves both how we send and receive messages. And so, it is really important for us to be able to communicate well especially in business.

Here below is the list on how you can improve your communication skills:

1. Learn to Listen

Listening is not the same as hearing. Learn to listen not only to the words being spoken but how they are being spoken and the non-verbal messages sent with them. Use the techniques of clarification and reflection to confirm what the other person has said and avoid any confusion. Try not to think about what to say next whilst listening; instead clear your mind and focus on the message being received. Your friends, colleagues and other acquaintances will appreciate good listening skills.

2. Be Aware of Other People’s Emotions

Be sympathetic to other people’s misfortunes and congratulate their positive landmarks. To do this you need to be aware of what is going on in other people’s lives. Make and maintain eye contact and use first names where appropriate. Do not be afraid to ask others for their opinions as this will help to make them feel valued.

Consider the emotional effect of what you are saying and communicate within the norms of behaviour acceptable to the other person.

3. Empathise

Empathy is trying to see things from the point-of-view of others. When communicating with others, try not to be judgemental or biased by preconceived ideas or beliefs, instead view situations and responses from the other person’s perspective. Stay in tune with your own emotions to help enable you to understand the emotions of others.

If appropriate, offer your personal viewpoint clearly and honestly to avoid confusion. Bear in mind that some subjects might be taboo or too emotionally stressful for others to discuss.

4. Encourage

Offer words and actions of encouragement, as well as praise, to others. Make other people feel welcome, wanted, valued and appreciated in your communications. If you let others know that they are valued, they are much more likely to give you their best. Try to ensure that everyone involved in an interaction or communication is included through effective body language and the use of open questions.

5. Learn to Communicate Effectively

Do not say the first thing that comes into your head but instead take a moment and pay close attention to what you say and how you say it.

What You Should Do

Aim to increase understanding by considering how your message might be received by the other person. By communicating clearly, you can help avoid misunderstandings and potential conflict with others. By speaking eloquently you will come across as more intelligent and mature.

Mar 30

How to Start With Affiliate Marketing

In this article, I’m going to walk you through everything you need to know to start affiliate marketing on your blog, even if you’ve never made a cent online before, don’t know what affiliate marketing is, or haven’t even started to build your blog.

We’ve obviously got a lot of work to do but let’s start with the basic. And so let’s get going!

What is Affiliate Marketing?

Let’s start with the most basic of basic questions: what is affiliate marketing?

Simply put, affiliate marketing is a way for you (the affiliate) to earn a commission for recommending products or services to your friends or readers.

To simplify it, here’s the 4 step process for how it works:

1. You find a product you want to promote
2. You sign up for their affiliate program
3. You get a special link that allows the merchant to track the people who clicked your link
4. If they buy the product, you get a commission.

Pretty simple, right? It can get much more advanced, but in this post we’re just going to start with the fundamentals and get you to the point where you’re ready to make your first commission.

How Does It Work?

There are a lot of different ways to track affiliates these days, but all are based off someone clicking your special tracking link. The most common and basic type of tracking is via a cookie.

When the link is clicked, a small file called a cookie is stored on their computer letting the merchant know that if a sale is made, it came from you. There are also more advanced methods based on the email used or IP address – but we won’t get into those here, we’ll stick to the basics.

Why Affiliate Marketing is better than Other Types of Blog Monetization

Most new bloggers assume that advertising or banner ads are the best way to monetize your site. You couldn’t be more wrong. They often get started with AdSense because it’s easy. To be honest I can’t remember the last time I saw an AdSense advertisement – thank you AdBlock! But seriously, not only will these make your site hideous, you have to have obscene amounts of traffic to actually make any real income. Selling ad space to sponsors is almost as bad. A good rule of thumb I’ve always used for how much you could sell ad space.

Daily visitors divided by 10 is the dollar amount you can make per month on an ad. If you follow along with the few strategies I’ve, you’ll be making affiliate sales in no time off of your blog.

Wrapping Up

I know that was a lot of information, I think, but if you’ve been struggling with figuring out how to start monetizing your blog, the strategies above are a fantastic starting point. It’s how I made my first dollars online, and it has the potential to create a win/win for both you and your readers!

Want to take your online business and affiliate marketing more seriously? Be interested and study more about it!

Mar 16

My Successful Affiliate Marketing Story

I started off using the Site Build It tools to make content web sites and realized how easy it was to make money using Google AdSense. From there, I got into the game of mass producing web sites and throwing AdSense on them, thinking I had the perfect system.

1

Life was easy back then. I was pulling in $300+ daily. I felt that I was really on top of life. I was financially, mentally and physically on top. Anyhow, I got busy with life, fell in love, but then things started to go wrong.

I was having major personal problems and on top of that, my spending became out of control. Then, disaster struck, and all of my web sites were gone, thrown out of the search engines, traffic died up, income gone. 10k a month went to pretty much zero and a bucket load of debt. It was a really tough time for me.

I didn’t think things could get much worse, but it did. I got kicked out of my flat because I couldn’t pay the bills any more. In my mind, I had gone from a winner to the biggest disaster on earth.

It’s weird, just like success, disaster can also snowball if you can’t get a hold of yourself and your emotions. To me, controlling your emotions means everything now, especially when it comes to making money online.

Well, I was on my knees, living in a rusty old caravan with a little old laptop. And then I remembered about affiliate marketing. I tried it as it has always intrigued me because I saw people posting screenshots of their earnings from affiliate marketing, and it always astounded me how much money they were making.

This just floored me and I’ve never been able to get affiliate marketing off my mind since. The potential income was just too great. And guess what, I am now successful. I earned more than before.

The Point

To some, it may seem like this post is just about me bragging about my recent success in affiliate marketing, or that I’m about to pitch some e-book or product to you.

If that’s what you thought, you’re wrong. The point of this very long-winded post is to never give up and to persevere. If I gave up after my first attempt and never tried again, I’d never be seeing the numbers I am today.

Affiliate marketing also has a fair bit of luck involved. Sometimes you just get lucky and will find a particular offer and particular traffic source that work but the only way to know is to keep trying.

Failure is fine as long as you learn from your mistakes and gain knowledge and experience. Obviously this doesn’t just pertain to affiliate marketing, but rather anything in life.

I know a lot of you are reading this post aren’t actually making any money online. There are a definitely a lot more ‘readers’ than ‘doers’ in this world, and a lot of people unknowingly live vicariously through others, whether it be the singers on American Idol or John Chow on the Internet.

While it’s great to dream and envy others, it’s even better to succeed yourself.

Don’t give up, and keep at it. This may all sound very lame, but the fact remains that you can’t succeed if you give up.

Keep at it, and success will eventually come…