How about Understanding the Key Elements to Building a Solid List

One of the main discussions about the affiliate industry is …Affiliate Marketing Leads.

When I got started to be involved in this industry I didn’t paid attention to the idea of building a list. It was … wrong …

Once you go into affiliate marketing, you will find that one of the key concerns you will have to focus on is building your leads. Leads often come in the form of e-mail addresses, behind which are real people with very real potential to become your customers, subscribers or members. Having a solid list of leads is assurance that you will be capable of reaching a ready market and generating income from there.

The importance of affiliate marketing leads

Companies with a product or service to sell spend billions of dollars on advertising alone. That’s right – billions. The purpose of spending such a huge amount of cash is mainly to build buzz about a product, expand the market and ultimately, bring in better sales.



In affiliate marketing, the cost of advertising is comparatively small and is paid for by the affiliate company. So as an affiliate, that is no longer your concern. Your only job is to look for a market to promote to that will respond to you positively so you can earn an income in return.

Unlike in a real world business, this market will come in the form of affiliate marketing leads. The quality of these leads, along with the type and number of positive responses they offer will determine whether or not you’ll succeed in affiliate marketing. If you hear someone say, ‘the money is on the list’, he or she is actually referring to the list of leads. Without this, you cannot hope to sell, much less earn.

Building your affiliate marketing leads

It’s not rocket science, true, but affiliate marketing can be tricky nevertheless. It’s a proven business model and many affiliates have had considerable success in their chosen programs. However, like all businesses, there are also certain factors upon which your success in building your list of affiliate marketing leads rest. Consider these factors carefully:

Your reputation

As a new affiliate marketer, you will find that it will take a while before you can build your affiliate marketing leads. All new marketers have gone through this since enjoying the patronage of a solid number of followers will not happen overnight.

To attract a solid list of affiliate marketing leads, you will have to become a recognized business entity in the industry. Without a reputation, potential leads will find it difficult to trust you or at least do business with you. Faced with a choice between buying from a popular marketer versus an unfamiliar one, wouldn’t you rather buy from the person you know than from a total stranger?

The same is true with your affiliate marketing leads. They will need to recognize you as a reliable merchant or affiliate before they agree to buy, participate or become one of your recruits.

Web traffic

Another key element that affects the number of affiliate marketing leads you can obtain is the amount of traffic your site receives. A high web traffic figure is beneficial in two ways – it allows you to obtain comparatively larger affiliate accounts and increases your potential of building a bigger number of affiliate marketing leads.

Without a good number of traffic to your website, you might have to either focus on using strategies to build it first or join a networking service offering affiliate programs instead.

The affiliate product

There are two things that affect how well you can build your affiliate marketing leads. One is the product’s value and the other is how well you yourself understand the product.

The choice of an affiliate product is critical to every affiliate. An affiliate product that has a proven or at least a potential for good sales will be far easier to promote and generate income from. It will also make it easier for an affiliate to build leads with, since prospects will be more willing to respond to it.

A good understanding of what makes the affiliate product attractive and valuable enough is also key to attracting more leads. Being able to explain why and how a product works on your website or articles, for example, will help you sell it better, especially vis-ŕ-vis other products competing for the same market.

The niche or target market

One common concern among affiliates is market saturation – that point in time when a specific segment of the market becomes flooded with the same (or at least similar) products and services. So much so that it becomes increasingly difficult to sell, much less to convince prospective buyers to consider the product or service you’re trying to promote.

You can avoid this, however, by focusing on generating affiliate marketing leads from specifically targeted segments of the market or niches. Consider selling or promoting products that appeal to a specific group of people who have a common yet largely unmet need. Competition for this market is relatively low and with the right kind of strategies, you’ll find that this niche can be especially lucrative.

Managers: Should Your PR Budget Stress Tactics or Strategy?

If tactics are the name of the game for you, it really means you are not planning to effectively alter individual perception among your key outside audiences which then would help you achieve your managerial objectives.
If public relations tactics like special events, brochures, broadcast plugs and press releases dominate your answer, you’re missing the best PR has to offer.

Such a budget would tell us that you believe tactics ARE public relations. And that would be too bad, becauseit means you are not effectively planning to alterindividual perception among your key outside audienceswhich then would help you achieve your managerialobjectives.

It would also tell us that, even as a business, non-profit orassociation manager, you’re not planning to do anything positive about the behaviors of those important external audiences of yours that MOST affect your operation. Nor are you preparing to persuade those key outside folks to your way of thinking by helping to move them to take actions that allow your department, division or subsidiary to succeed.

So, it takes more than good intentions for you as a manager to alter individual, key-audience perception leading to changed behaviors. It takes a carefully structured plan dedicated to getting every member of the PR team working towards the same external audience behaviors insuring that the organization’s public relations effort stays sharply focused.

The absence of such a plan is always unfortunate because the right public relations planning really CAN alter individual perception and lead to changed behaviors among key outside audiences.
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Lifetime Relationships!

Do you realize relationships begin shortly after birth and are ongoing ways of life for every person on the planet?

An important part of life depends on how we develop our relationships with others. Perhaps, if we consider examples of this development, a better understanding will enable us to think more clearly before we interact with others.

Do you realize relationships begin shortly after birth and are ongoing ways of life for every person on the planet?

An important part of life depends on how we develop our relationships with others. Perhaps, if we consider examples of this development, a better understanding will enable us to think more clearly before we interact with others.
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How to Remove Barriers To The Sale

When you are selling a service, the buyer doesn’t really know whether the service will work for them until AFTER they have bought. This can stall many sales. This article shows an innovative way of removing this barrier to the sale.

When a client is thinking about hiring you, two major questions in their mind are: ‘Can this person deliver what they say they can deliver?’ and ‘Will their approach work in our particular business?’ The trouble is no client can really answer these questions until after they have hired you. And that’s the catch 22. This is a major stumbling block which can delay if not totally grind the sales process to a halt.

You can probably think of situations with your own prospects where this is the case. It’s a frustrating stalemate.

Yet for professional service providers, there is a way out of this frustrating conundrum. Promoting your own training courses or seminars can help you avoid this stumbling block because it gives your prospective clients a chance to sample you at low cost and risk for both parties.
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How to have lasting relationship with clients?

Clients are the most precious assets for a business. Without clients, there can be no business.

Clients are the most precious assets for a business. Without clients, there can be no business. With poor quality of clients, the business will be poor and if you manage to get very good clients and retain their loyalty, your business will only go up and up. This all sounds very exciting. But it is not easy to get very good clients and all the more difficult to retain them. After all, whatever you do, your competition is trying the same and may use better techniques to get business. Are there any innovative approaches to client relationships?

We are talking about direct sales in this discussion and not about selling merchandise to large consumer base. For example if you are a contractor maintaining air conditioners in clients work places. Or a direct seller of computer hardware to business buyers, and all such businesses where your sales to individual clients are large, and you are in direct contact with clients.
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Games are a Reflection of Behavior as Told by John Satta

You are standing on a small stage yelling, “What’s the name of the game?!”
“Win as much as you can!!!” comes roaring back.
“Who’s responsible for your score?!”
“I am!!”

The audience is composed of ninety men, all prisoners in a federal maximum security prison.
One more thing – you’re a woman.

For three years, Alicia volunteered every Thursday at FCI (Federal Correctional Institute) in Bastrop, Texas-
“I used my skills as a corporate trainer to help these men learn to shift their perspective on themselves and the world.”
“Along the way the prisoners taught me as much, perhaps more, than I taught them.”
“In my training business, I use games as a way to break down barriers and shift perceptions. What I came to realize is that your behavior in a game is an exaggerated reflection of your behavior in real life.”

Games are an opening to behave true to our natures, to react immediately rather than with a careful response. Depending on the other players, we may monitor our behavior less in a game than in the real world, but we aren’t acting differently. In a game there are no emotional holds barred.

In a game, we are allowed to be more right brained than logical. After all, “It’s only a game.”

Saying something is only a game tends to trivialize its importance. Precisely because we view it as trivial, and of no importance, we can give ourselves permission to let our true natures out.

When we floated this idea before a number of colleagues, several of them told us stories of self-discovery. One woman, a very sweet and kind person in “real life”, was known as “the enforcer” when she played hockey in school. Another shared that, when she plays a game against total strangers she becomes “brutal” and highly competitive.

So if our true nature comes out in a game, what can we do with that information?

Can we transform situations so that we can be true to our nature? Can we make a game out of real world situations to allow our true nature to flourish? The obvious example is to view business as a game to be won. This implies competition and a winner take all attitude.

Yet Covey and others have told us about creating win-win situations. Is there such a thing as a win-win game – a game where everyone wins, where no one loses? Can you devise a game where you can put your competitive streak toward a larger goal? Can the proverbial pie be made larger? As someone said to me, to transform from “me winning” to “we winning”.

What’s the name of the game? Win as much as you can!

Who’s responsible for your score? I am!

The game Alicia played with the inmates was called “the handshake game”. She had them pair up by size, height and weight and explained the rules. “We’ll play the game for 45 seconds. You get one point when your hand taps his hip; he gets one point when his hand taps your hip.”

The vast majority of the pairs had a combined score of 0 points. A few pairs scored in the 10 – 20 point range.

But one pair scored 260 points.

The high scorers had realized that the name of the game and scoring responsibility did not define a win-lose (or “zero-sum”) game. That is, one person did not win at the expense of the other.

Of course, the entire thing was a set-up. Alicia paired them up by size, height and weight to set the expectation that it was an evenly matched contest. She got them chanting to get their excitement up.

And she neglected to tell them that the pair was a team and the team members’ scores would be combined.

“Deliberately I didn’t tell them they were supposed to cooperate with their partner. I also never told them who the competitors were.”

We all know that a “formal” team must cooperate to win. The revelation here was that by cooperating they could maximize their individual scores.

What’s the name of the game? Win as much as you can!

Who’s responsible for your score? I am!

The rules say nothing about preventing the other person from getting a high score. The pair who “got it” quickly settled into a rhythm of “one for you and one for me”. And they could have kept that up for as long as the game ran. Meanwhile, the other teams were struggling and would have exhausted themselves long before the winners did. And, when the few teams who did spot the pair who “got it” there were charges of “cheating” leveled at them. “We saw what they were doing but thought they were cheating or didn’t understand the rules.”

The cooperation – competition confusion is nicely summed up in the concept called “the prisoners’ dilemma”. Two people are arrested for a crime and there is enough evidence to put them both in jail for 1 year.

The police keep them isolated from each other and offer each the same deal: “If one of you talks and the other does not, the snitch goes free and the other one gets 3 years. If you both talk, you both get 2 years.”

The partners can work together (by staying silent) and both get only a year in jail. By both defecting from the partnership to work with the police they will both get 2 years.

A single defector will go free while the one who cooperated gets 3 years.

The dilemma is formed by pitting trust against greed. The temptation of greed combined with a habit of competition blinds us to a different perspective.

But don’t think that only prisoners are subject to this. When Alicia has had groups of corporate executives play this game, they fall into the same behavior pattern as the prisoners. In fact, in some corporate sessions nobody “gets it”.

There seems to be a dichotomy between competing and winning. The idea of cooperating to win seems odd. In fact, we see other players complain that the ones who “get it” are cheating!

What you do depends on your view of the game. If the game is seen as a one-time event, why not be brutal – there will be no consequences. But if this event is one in a series, then cooperation is clearly the better long-term strategy, if only because there will be a chance for the other to get even.

In studies of prisoners’ dilemma style games (played for points and not reduced jail time) the players eventually settle into a strategy dubbed “tit for tat”. Their actions are saying, “If you cooperate last time, I’ll cooperate next time. If you defected last time, I’ll defect next time.”

Using the word “defect” helps us see the shift – the opposite of cooperating (working on the same side) is defecting to the other side.

The desire to compete and the desire to win are not the same.

Game terminology (strategies, tactics, moves, etc.) is often applied to “serious” parts of life. Because the word game has a connotation of triviality, we sometimes bristle at its use to describe the things that mean the most to us.

What if we kept in mind that ‘it’s all a game’ – would we behave differently?

Philosopher James P. Carse writes in the first chapter of Finite and Infinite Games, “There are at least two kinds of games. One could be called finite, the other infinite. A finite game is played for the purpose of winning, and infinite game for the purpose of continuing the play.”

The book’s subtitle is “A Vision of Life as Play and Possibility.” His premise is that a game is about the relationship between the player.

In the book he characterizes two types of players. Finite players play within the rules, infinite players play with the rules. Finite players play to end the game (with their victory), infinite players play to continue the game (by whatever means they see fit). Finite players play to win, infinite players play to keep playing.

The players who “get it” are playing with the rules looking to transform a finite game into an infinite one.

If this article has intrigued you we encourage you to look at the various “games” that you are “playing” and with whom. Who are your “teammates” and what kind of game are you playing? With increased awareness of our behavior, and the behavior of others, we are able to create a “win as much as WE can” mentality.

E-Commerce Business – Proceed With Caution

A brief look at the e-commerce industry and the need for live operator customer service support.

There is an epidemic in the United States. An epidemic that is so overlooked, if gone unchecked any longer, could cripple the economic strata of the U.S. An epidemic that could be responsible for the genocide of millions of businesses. Curious what it is? I am referring to the gross mismanagement of e-commerce businesses. Okay, perhaps the phrases “cripple the economic strata” and “genocide of millions of businesses” was stretching a bit too far, however, it is a fact that the bulk of e-commerce businesses are not built on an infrastructure that embodies stability. I am referring to a lack of customer service support in the umbrella of businesses designating themselves “e-commerce” or “virtual businesses”.

It is true that the lure of starting the e-commerce business is powerful. An endeavor as such usually requires little or no capital investment, a credit card processing account, and rudimentary knowledge of HTML coding. These three elements compose the basic formula for starting an e-commerce business. There is a marked difference in the formula for starting a business and the formula for maintaining a business. To expound on the latter, what truly makes a business thrive is proper customer relationship management and immediate telephone / live voice account support. This is the key component that is missing from most on-line or “virtual” businesses.
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