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Followup, The Secret to Success in Affiliate Marketing
By Robert Thompson
Whether promoting SFI, Goji, Amway or any other Affiliate Marketing program, it seems that I always hear the same complaints from other affiliates in those programs.
"I never hear from my downline!" or "No matter how many times I write, My downline affiliates never seem to get involved." In fact, this is very common throughout the affiliate marketing industry. In most cases it takes as many as 100 new affiliates to gain one who is active and will actually take action to build a business.
This is totally unacceptable, and avoidable if you use proper followup techniques. In fact, the one in one hundred ratio can be improved dramatically by using a solid followup plan. The plan included in this article has four parts that if followed, will cause your affiliate marketing results to skyrocket.
Get Your Reader's Attention
What I mean by this, is that you need to get them to actually read what you have to say. Those interested in a business opportunity usually sign up for several different programs. Each of these programs is competing for the readers attention, and as a result, your messages can easily be lost in the clutter.
What is needed is a way to make your messages stand out from the crowd. Snappy headlines help, but to really get a reader's attention, try using Ecards in your followup program. Ecards have a couple of advantages that can ignite your followup campaign. First, everybody likes getting a greeting card and when they see a notice in their in box that someone has sent them a card, their natural curiosity gets the best of them, and they open the card. Second, most Ecard providers provide a tracking service that notifies you when a card has been opened. This allows you to gauge the effectiveness of your followup campaign.
Here are a couple of hints that will definitely help you in the use of Ecards. First, limit the use of these cards to special occasions. Your
initial introduction, and a congratulatory message upon completion of a training event should do the job. Do not over use them, or Ecards
can become ineffective. Second, keep your messages short and sweet. The idea is to get your reader used to dealing with you. After a couple of contacts, they will be more likely to look for your Email address on normal correspondence.
Ecards are available from a variety of sources and are usually provided for free by the major Internet Service Providers. You can also purchase custom cards for a smalll fee from companies like Hallmark.
Write a Newsletter
Getting responses from your downline affiliates is all about building trust and your initial contact is only the beginning. In order to develop this
trust, follow up on a regular basis with a newsletter to your entire organization. Make your newsletter fun and upbeat. Include a useful article or two, and a couple of references to useful tools. Also, if one of your affiliates achieves a milestone, for instance Top 100 placement, mention it in your letter with a congratulation and a nice reward. Spend some money for a co-op share for them, or send them a free Ebook.
"But I only have a couple of affiliates right now" you say.
It doesn't matter if you have two or two thousand affiliates in your downline. The effects are the same. By sending out a newsletter to your
affiliates, you will generate interest, establish yourself as a leader, and as someone who cares about your team members. This goes a long
way toward establishing trust and fostering teamwork.
Special Announcements are the next step in building trust, and generating activity within your afiliate team. If you discover a really exciting tool, or maybe an intriguing post on business forum that will be useful to your affiliates, make a special announcement to your team. This may not light a fire under every member of your team, but it only takes one or two folks to become active to really change the dynamics of your entire organization.
Delivering Your Messages
Most affiliate programs provide a simple autoresponder which allows you to send group messages. Most of these only have the capability of sending text messages, but to send your newsletters and announcements, they can be extremely effective. If you want to really get your teams attention, try using one of the many commercially available autoresponders on the market today. These will allow you to set up and deliver not only text pages, but HTML documents as well. For those of you who aren't familiar with this, an HTML newsletter looks like a miniature Webpage, complete with color, banners and hyperlinks. This is a great way to give a little bit of pizzazz to your written communications.
Keep in mind, that you can send newsletters and special announcements to your team, even if your team only has a few members. By properly wording your messages, you can create the illusion that you are leading a very large organization. This lends credibility to your efforts, and your response rate will improve.
Continue to Refine your Messages
Look for words and phrases that have a tendency to "tell people what to do" and replace them with "suggestions and recommendations." Nobody likes to be told what to do, and when it happens, the natural reaction is to rebel, or worse yet, to ignore your message. When this happens, you risk losing your affiliate forever.
Enlist the Support of Others
When you finally do get a couple of interested and active affiliates, involve them in your daily activities. There are two immediate benefits to
doing this. First, you will build a relationship that benefits both of you, because both have unique qualities to contribute to the business relationship. For instance, their talents can be exploited in the areas of editing and proofreading. Second, you will be able to train your affiliate on how to proceed in their business. You will be able to pass on key knowledge as to what has worked for you, and what to avoid.
Remember, if you are getting a lousy response to your followup efforts, chances are that you only need to refine what you are doing. Use Ecards to get a reader's attention. Keep your messages short and simple. Be sincere. Build trust among your team members with newsletters and special announcements. Continually refine your messages, and enlist the support of others on your team.
By following this short lesson, you should see a dramatic improvement in your response rate, and a corresponding increase in your
commission checks. : )
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