Posted on January 11, 2000
By Chris Small,
of World Deal Center
I truly enjoy the simplicity of representing a ready made marketing concept. All the hard work has been done in advance by the company. My job is simply to market the product or service.
Please note that while this article is not intended to offend anyone, it is going to be very direct and to the point. The candy coating has been removed.
It always amazes me when I look at the stats of People who join Affiliate Programs. Over 90% of them do absolutely nothing. They don't even do so much as click onto their own affiliate page. Some of this may be due to a lack of knowledge or understanding of the process. People have the impression that simply signing up will make them a success. But, the biggest reason, in my opinion, is that they just lose interest. They only have as much interest as it takes to get signed up and hope that the company or their upline will make them rich. The old, "well I'll give it a try" routine.
Basically, what it boils down to is that the new affiliate marketer must believe in the program AND IN THEMSELVES enough to take some serious action. Now if you are the type of person who is very intent on building a big affiliate income, keep reading. If you are only casually interested in Affiliate success, this article is not for you.
Promote Products and Services that YOU Believe In
First of all you must find a program that gets you excited. Yes, even with the anonymity that the Internet offers, your enthusiasm will be reflected in your words. Remember this, 'most people will make their purchase because of a testimonial or personal recommendation. Simply pasting pre written company materials is not going to yield the number of sign ups and sales that you want. You are going to have to communicate directly to many of your prospects. In order to do this effectively, you must exude enthusiasm and confidence.
Use Personal Endorsements
Personal endorsements and testimonials are going to provide far more credibility than banner ads and pretty pictures ever will. You must have them. Write your own. Ask your customers for feedback. Ask your upline for their testimonial. Ask your downline. Get as many legitimate words of praise for the program that you are promoting as possible.
Have you ever seen the ads that read; "I lost xx pounds - ask me how". They are everywhere; in newspapers, on buttons that people wear, laundromat bulletin boards, bumper stickers, etc.. As distasteful as they may be, they are a testament to the power of personal testimonials.
Utilize the Full Value of Ezines
The most effective way to reach your prospects is through ezines. I won't go into all the reasons why you should have your own, there are already many fine articles on that subject. Let's just say that if you don't publish your own, then you will have to pay someone else, who does, to present your marketing message. Even if you have your own ezine it is very wise to buy or barter advertising space in other Internet newsletters.
There are several ways present your message in ezines. The most common, but least effective, is through the use of classified ads. They do work, and are cheap to buy, but you will see far better results with a higher profile ad. Placing your message at or near the top of the publication gives it a much better chance of being seen. These "Sponsor Ads" or "Featured Ads" not only stand out from the rest of the ads, but they carry more credibility too. Also, many publishers will allow you to include more copy in the higher paying ads.
In your own ezine you can take your liberties and write full articles that discuss the merits of your affiliate program. This can be a very effective method, but you need to remember to write it with the readers interests in mind. Nothing turns people off faster than blatant self serving commercials. Always use the WIIFM principle. The reader needs to know, "What's In It For Me".
The Best Method
The absolute best way that I have found to promote any product or service on the Internet is by sending out special news releases or time sensitive updates to a list of ezine subscribers. These solo mailings are separate from the regular ezine. They focus only on one program, or aspect of it. The results are astounding. Usually within a few hours you will see 90% of the action. If the copy is written well and you are aiming at a targeted audience, you can get a very high response rate.
Use Your Stats
One last method that helps me to focus my promotions effectively is simply to study the site logs and stats pages. Many Affiliate programs will provide you with a stats page. Most of them are only about hits, sign ups and income. This is good information to know, but it doesn't let you know which ads are working the best. That's why I like to create redirect pages on my site.
Here's how it works. You create an ad for XYZ affiliate and place it in an ezine (or on a web page). Instead of putting in a link to your affiliate page address, you would create a page on your site that automatically sends the visitor to the affiliate page. Each ad that you use would lead to a separate redirect page. There are two main benefits to this. 1) The link address is going to look more professional and probably shorter. eg: www.yourdomain.com/xyz3.htm. 2)You will be able to see in your server logs which ads are drawing the most hits. For more information about the mechanics of this, read one of my previous articles in the AddMe Newsletter "Little known Secrets of HTML" at http://www.addme.com/oct0599.htm.
One caveat. There are literally hundreds and hundreds of Affiliate programs floating around on the Internet for all kinds of products and services. Some of them are dogs. They just won't work, regardless of how well you promote them. Be wise in selecting the one(s) that you are going to invest your time and money into.
When you find a good one, practice the above methods, along with your own creativity and enthusiasm, and you too will experience the joy of opening envelopes with large cheques in them. I look forward to reading YOUR success story.
Feel free to contact me with further questions.
You are invited to sample some of Chris's other articles by going to http://www.worlddealcenter.com/reports.htm.
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