Affiliate Marketing Myths

Affiliate marketing is mistakenly notorious for unethical advertising tactics that alienate consumers and often involve fraudulent activity. However, while this reputation may have stemmed from the birth of the affiliate industry when laws and best practices didn’t regulate active players, the spending growth and accountability of affiliate marketing companies speak to the lasting legitimacy of this booming industry. Thus, it’s time to dispel the rumors that tarnish the credibility of this cost-effective and resource-efficient advertising channel. Below are five common misconceptions of affiliate marketing that will help companies realize why they should be making the most of their access to the online digital marketing world.

1) Affiliate marketing is a fancy term for spam.

People often confuse banner ads and emails sent by affiliates as spam. Thanks to the FTC and IAB, affiliate partners have to follow strict guidelines and face litigation if they violate any of the industry-wide standards for best practices. Specifically, affiliates are required to own the data to which they mail and maintain a list of consumers who opt-out of further solicitation, eliminate deceptive marketing strategies, and only work with partners who uphold the regulations set in place. In contrast, actual spammers use illegal and unethical marketing tactics that typically trick the consumer into surrendering personal information without following through with the product or service promised.

2) Affiliate programs are easy to manage.

Because some companies don’t understand the complexity behind an active and well-managed affiliate program, they assume they can manage their digital marketing campaigns on their own and see the same success as their competitors. Rather, designing and maintaining a lucrative campaign takes both time and technological resources to build, test, and optimize advertisements that will gain maximum conversions. Business don’t typically have in-house access to the tools they need and should hire an experienced affiliate manager or OPM agency to handle their program. Affiliate programs don’t take off over night so the time commitment and industry know-how that an affiliate or OPM manager provides will be tantamount to a program’s long-term effectiveness.

3) Affiliate programs only work for some niche markets.

A company may avoid participating in the affiliate space because they believe their target niche is too small or specialized to appeal to a mass audience. Fortunately for them, an affiliate program will not only expand their customer base but will also expose them to new markets which translate into new sales opportunities. In addition, the results of a campaign test schedule may encourage a company to adapt their product or service to serve a universal audience and catapult sales in the long run.

4) Affiliate marketing is losing popularity and won’t be around much longer.

By 2016, spending in the affiliate marketing industry should exceed 4.5 billion dollars, more than doubling in size in just five years. The growth rate should continue to grow and shift into new channels including mobile, SEO and other emerging digital marketing platforms. Traditional venues for both advertising and sales exchanges will continue to decrease in size and the affiliate marketing space will benefit from the transferring market share. Sales generated through affiliate channels on Black Friday and Cyber Monday in 2014 solidified past speculations that consumers want to buy online and will search through their emails for advertisements and special deals that they can’t find elsewhere. Affiliate marketing is the new wave of traditional advertising and will adapt and grow with technological advances that have made other forms of marketing obsolete.

5) Affiliate programs don’t have as great of a success rate as other forms of online advertising.

Amazon’s affiliate program accounts for 40% of its revenue, a percentage rate that any company can enjoy with the right affiliate management team. Even more surprising, 50% of customers acquired through affiliate programs are considered new buyers who are responsible for the exponential growth that businesses see through this marketing platform. Affiliate programs are the best advertising option for most companies because they involve low-risk, performance-based practices that generate real results in real time from real customers. Senior executives may have had their reasons for straying from affiliate marketing during its initial inception, but studies on industry growth prove that it’s time to reconsider joining the cause or get left behind.

A Contemporary Guide to Online Marketing: The Art and Science

Online marketing is a term we hear so often nowadays. Though traditionally, marketing was all about a billboard advertisement or an ad featured in a magazine, today it’s about so much more than that and there are so many possibilities and avenues to explore.

Modern-day marketing involves a unique blend of artistry and science. In order to be successful a marketer needs to combine a number of elements, as outlined below:

The Art of Successful Online Marketing

High-Quality Content Creation

Successful marketing begins with your written content. This has become one of the most fundamental strategies for modern marketing, provided the content is packed with useful information and is very well written.

Images

Images also play a key role in the success of your online marketing strategy as visual content captivates consumers and encourages them to stay put on your website for longer. Focus on incorporating images into your blog posts and website content in order to maintain user interest.

Email Marketing

Email marketing is another critical aspect of your online marketing strategy and is a fantastic way to reach out to thousands of people with the click of a button. By crafting interesting, resourceful and appealing email marketing campaigns you will generate a large and committed following of loyal clients.

Social Media

Social media has dramatically changed the way that businesses interact with their clients, so it’s essential that you have a solid social media marketing campaign as part of your marketing efforts. Social media provides a human element to your business and therefore enables you to truly craft your brand, interact with consumers and manage online relationships.

The Science of Successful Online Marketing

As previously mentioned, successful online marketing is as much a science as it is an art. In terms of the science of successful marketing, you need to focus on:
Analytics

Analytics enable you to evaluate important trends and takeaways from one location, but you need to be able to evaluate the data independently and gauge which direction your marketing strategies should be heading in.

Performance Tracking & Campaign Performance

Every marketing activity you undertake should be carefully recorded and tracked to ensure it is as cost-effective and successful as possible. Finally, there are plenty of tools available to track the performance of your latest campaign.

As you can see there are plenty of requirements involved in the role of contemporary online marketer which is why it’s essential that you are able to quickly adapt to this ever-changing industry and excel.

Why You Need a HubSpot Certified Partner Marketing Agency

Traditional marketing can be expensive, and small companies had and have to struggle to increase target market and reach their desired profit maximization through traditional strategies. Some agencies and firms now provide the digital and internet marketing for their clients. Some among them are truly exceptional, but all are not same. To find the best digital marketing agency that can employ a digital and inbound strategy for your business, you should check to see if they are a HubSpot Certified Partner or not. HubSpot is an inbound marketing tool designed to optimize and execute the most successful inbound marketing strategies. It is a trailblazer in the inbound marketing field.

Cold calling, TV advertisements, direct mail pieces, radio ads, and telemarketing might have been the most desired marketing strategies of the past, but gone are the days where you can rely on connecting with your target market strictly through outbound marketing. In this digital era, inbound marketing produces the greatest results. The reason behind it is growing popularity of the internet and people searching for content. When people can find all the information they need over the internet and can access it on their mobile phones, why they would care about a TV advertisement or cold calling! To connect with your target market and achieve the desired return on investment, businesses need to meet consumers where they are searching for information and provide them with relevant and engaging content through an inbound marketing strategy.

Inbound marketing strategies include website design & development, search engine optimization, social media marketing, content marketing, etc. If your business is not familiar with these tactics you should hire a reputable marketing agency for this job. As your consumers are online a lot of the time, internet marketing will increase the chances of lead generation and profit maximization. The digital marketing agencies design and develop websites followed by pushing out quality, relevant content to make drive traffic back to the website. It is advised to conduct extensive research on marketing firms before hiring one, as they may not have the services and experience you are looking for. A high quality marketing agency will be able to provide you with advanced inbound marketing strategies and handle the execution due to their experience.

A HubSpot Certified Partner agency should be high quality, but research should still be conducted into the agency to make sure if it is the right fit for you. Read the reviews of previous customers; look at their case studies and read through their website content. Once you are aware of a firm’s various advantages and disadvantages and have evaluated what is best for your business, contact the agency.

Are You Practicing Attraction Marketing or Pushy Marketing?

That is the question.

And you’re not practicing attraction marketing if you go around thinking your way is the only way.

This blog post and accompanying video were spawned by a post I saw on Facebook that hit a nerve. In fact, it’s one of my pet peeves when it comes to any kind of marketing, online or offline.

And that’s when a marketer is approached by a possible new prospect because they’re looking to make more money, and after the business owner explains the business, the prospect says, ‘Not interested.’

And the marketer automatically assumes that this person is not going to make any money anywhere because they didn’t sign up with them.

I can’t tell you how much this aggravates me hearing this from marketers today!

The Scenario
Okay, you’re in business “A.” Your business is not the only business out there to make money. And your business is not the only way to make money. And just because someone passed on your business doesn’t mean that that person is going to fail or that that person isn’t interested or that person isn’t serious about making money.

What it means is that your program – or you – are not a good match with that other person. And it happens!

Stop thinking that if I don’t sign up with you, it’s my loss; I’m the one who’s not going to make any money, I’m not serious.

No! It’s because not every program is for every one. If it was, there would only be one business in the entire world and everybody would have to do it.

There are thousands of ways to make money.
There are also people that don’t want to make money real fast. There are some people that don’t want to earn a full time living. There are some people that don’t want to make $15,000 a month.

That doesn’t mean that they’re losers. That doesn’t mean that they’re failures. That doesn’t mean that they’re not interested in making money.

That just means that they’re in a different mindset than you. Not that they’re in the wrong mindset; they’re in a different mindset from you.

That’s what competition, the free market and marketing is all about! Get over yourself!

Personal Branding
You’re supposed to be marketing YOU and you are not the only person who can teach everybody how to make money. And if people move away from you then they’re not serious.

I signed up a new guy in my business and inside of 24 hours he sent me an email and he said, ‘After going through the program, I realize that I really don’t want to devote that much time; I really don’t have the time to devote to market this business properly.’

And I responded, ‘That’s fine. If you change your mind, we’re always here.’

If I did that to some of these other marketers, which I have; I dropped out of a program or a I declined an opportunity, and the first thing I hear is, ‘Oh, well, your loss. I guess you’re not really serious about making money.’

No, it’s not that I’m not serious about making money. I didn’t like your program! I want to do something different. I’m allowed to do that.

No, I’m not interested in making $50,000 a month, and if I can’t sign up 100 people in a month to your business then I’m not serious.

Wrong!

We are all individuals.
We each have our own way of doing things. Not everybody is cut out of the same mold. And that doesn’t mean that if I don’t sign up with you, I’m an idiot. If I don’t sign up with you, I’m not serious about my life. If I don’t sign up with you, I have flawed dreams.

No. If I don’t sign up with you, it’s because we’re not going to be a good match, because your program isn’t going to be a good match, because whatever you’re program is, it didn’t light a fire, it didn’t say anything to ME.

It might say something to you and you’re all passionate about it, but it didn’t sit right with me.

Does that mean I’m a failure? No. It means that it’s just not what I want to do.

You marketers out there that get all so full of yourselves that, ‘Oh my gosh, well, after I spent all this time talking about the business and they don’t want to sign up, I guess they’re just not willing to make money. They’re not willing to change their life.’

Get off your own pedestal! Be real!

You are not the be-all end-all of marketers and you’re not the be-all end-all of marketing programs.

I even say this with the businesses I’m with. I’m with SFI and I’m with womBoost. Those are my two primary programs. They are not for everybody. I can’t get up on a high horse saying, ‘Well, if you don’t sign up with ME, you’re not going to do anything with your life.’

Wrong! Because look at how many other businesses and programs there are out there!

Everybody’s way of doing things is going to be different.
I cannot stand these marketers that are so full of themselves that they think they are the only ones that can teach you how to make money, and the program that they’re in is the only one that’s going to work for everybody.

They don’t realize just how many people they push away with their attitudes. I don’t want to work with people like that. The people that I work with don’t want me to be like that.

This is something that a lot of marketers need to understand – when you sign up with a company, if you have the passion and the wherewithal to get out there and make all that kind of money, fine. Don’t push it into the faces of people that approach you to find out what you’re doing.

That’s not attraction marketing. That’s not magnetic marketing. That’s PUSHY marketing.

That’s a turnoff to some people.

And when I saw this post on Facebook, I’m thinking, there’s a lot of people that are either going to go, ‘Yeah! You’re right! They don’t care! They don’t want to change their lives!’

And you’re going to have other people that are going to look at that and go, ‘Boy, they’re really full of themselves, aren’t they?’ Like, is this the only person that can teach me?

As marketers, we have to find our middle ground. Your business might be perfect to you and the members who are in it, but to others, not so much.

You can claim, ‘We have XXX amount of people signing up every day!’ But how many are staying with the program?

And that’s for just about any network marketing company out there. Not every MLM is for everyone, or we would have one world company that everyone would have to be in, because everybody would be cut from the same mold.

And it’s not that way.

Everybody’s vision is different.
Everybody’s plans are different. Everybody’s path to success looks different. Everybody’s reasons to be in business for themselves is different.

So keep that in your head when you’re marketing. If somebody drops out or if somebody says no to your opportunity, let it go. You don’t have to post it on Facebook or tweet about it or Google+ it that this person isn’t serious.

Just move on, because that kind of an attitude isn’t going to help your business.