First Ever Affiliate Management Conference: Affiliate Management Days 2012

Affiliate Management Days 2012There has been some hustle and bustle the last few weeks with some great affiliate related conferences coming up over the next couple of months. Affiliate Summit West 2012 (#ASW12) is just around the corner and with thousands of attendees it’s bound to be another great show.

However something new has come into the space recently that also deserves some attention. Affiliate Management Days 2012 (#AMDays), the industry’s first conference targeted specifically toward affiliate managers and business owners looking to get into the space, will be held in San Francisco on March 8th and 9th.

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Top 50 Best Affiliate Network Comparison: 2009 vs 2011

In 2009 Website Magazine came out with a Top 50 list of Affiliate Networks that ranged from CPA (Cost Per Action) to PPS (Pay Per Sale) and PPL (Pay Per Lead) networks. In 2011, they came out with a new list of Top 100 Advertising and Affiliate Networks (which was actually only 99 if you count them). What I find interesting is the new blend of Ad Buy Search Networks vs the Affiliate Marketing Networks and the differences between them. You can read the full article here for more information about these. More Ad Networks, such as 7Search.com are popping up as well as more CPA. I also find that most networks are looking to offer additional services to be more E-Commerce 3.0 friendly. Ultimately networks are continuously looking for new ways to increase their revenues and service offering in this highly competitive industry.

Here is a recap of the lists from 2009 and 2011.

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Why ShareaSale over Commission Junction, LinkShare or an In House Program?

I recently had a question from one of my new client’s web development team asking why we’d choose to work with Share-a-Sale over one of the larger networks such as Commission Junction or LinkShare. He also suggested that we could use a shopping cart plug in for affiliate tracking instead. Here was my reply to him.

“I have worked with a variety of different in house programs as well as with the big names in affiliate networks. The big three for e-commerce are Commission Junction (CJ), LinkShare (LS) and Google Affiliate Network (GAN). There are about 1000 affiliate networks these days all offering “the best solution”.

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The Importance of Properly Planning your Brand

Yes, planning. We’ve heard it a million times. “If you fail to plan, plan on on failing”. It sounds cliche but the point is, it’s true. I’ve written several articles on How to Write an Effective Internet Marketing Plan which outlines the very basic elements that should be considered when planning a new online venture.

But what I want to discuss today is the importance of properly planning your brand and what impact having a properly planned brand could mean for you. Your brand is far more than your logo. It’s the synergy between who you are, what you do, how you think, what you represent and how others see you. It’s everything from the look and feel of your website to the values you communicate to your target market.

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Skimlinks an Affiliate or Affiliate Network?

Recent Update (several months after original post) : there are several merchants and outsourced program managers who are complaining about Skimlinks being a sub-network and the types of affiliates they are allowing into their network. The original post which made it sound like a positive solution and one to accept into your programs may no longer be accurate. The bottom line is Skimlinks IS in fact a sub-network and there are pros and cons to this. I encourage you to do your own research and make a decision for yourself as to whether you will allow sub-networks into your program or not. There are many who are for it and many who are against it. It will ultimately be up to you.

— ORIGINAL POST —

There have been a few questions lately about what Skimlinks is and how it fits into the affiliate marketing world. Some question whether it is an affiliate, a network or something in between.

Skimlinks is actually a great affiliate tool that allows an affiliate to easily and seamlessly earn money from text links on their site (perfect for bloggers!) where as Skimlinks puts in an affiliate link to a related product or service for you. Then if a sale is made, both Skimlinks and the affiliate earn money from the sale (25%/75% split respectively).

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Affiliate Marketing in Canada: The Next Big Thing?

I had a bit of an epiphany this week after speaking with a US based affiliate who recently launched a website targeting Canadian buyers. This affiliate started in the industry about eight years ago with one website and a two man team. Today, this affiliate owns over 25 different Google Page Rank 4 properties and is able to fund the employment of 25 people strictly on commission from the merchants they promote.

It was an interesting conversation which led to me sending myself about 10 emails from bed the other night as my husband and baby slept beside me. The evolution of ideas keep coming in and I required my blackberry remind me in the morning each exciting angle that came to me.

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7 Free Affiliate Recruitment Strategies That Work

I’m often asked what my top affiliate recruitment strategies are by new merchants coming into the affiliate marketing space. Depending on their budget, there are a variety of free and paid affiliate recruitment strategies I recommend. Here are my favorite free affiliate recruitment strategies that work.

1. Search Engines

The most obvious free way to find good potential websites to partner with is to do a manual search for related keywords in search engines such as Google, Yahoo and Bing.

However many people stop there. Don’t forget there are a variety of search engines, not just the top three. Also consider niche search engines such as Search7.com for business, or Ask.com which helps people find answers to questions they might have.
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3 Tips for Attending Affiliate Summit West 2012

Register Today for ASW12

Affiliate Summit West 2012 is just around the corner and is the most anticipated affiliate marketing event of the year. This year’s Affiliate Summit will be located at Caesars Palace, Las Vegas, between January 8-10. It is expected to sell out by the end of this month.

All the biggest players from all angles of the affiliate marketing world will be at this event. Last year, Affiliate Summit West saw a record breaking 4,800 attendees, with this year being even larger.
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5 Myths About Your Affiliates

There are several misconceptions that merchants have about their affiliates and their affiliate marketing programs. Here are 5 common myths I’ve come across over the years.

1. Affiliates Work for You

Affiliates work WITH you, not for you. They work for themselves. Many merchants have the mentality that affiliates are their employees or subcontractors. They are not.

The beauty of being an affiliate is that you have the freedom to pick and chose what merchants you want to work with, which products you want to promote, which hours you want to work, what you want your website to look like and how you want to market them.

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