Mostly everyone who discusses the merits of an affiliate marketing network likely focuses on the pay-per-click versus pay-for-performance aspects of this advertising tool, and rightfully so!
Online, these two programs alone have shown themselves to be the workhorses of a successful and diversified affiliate marketing network while at the same time not demanding an undue strain on a company’s promotion budget.
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This makes start-up companies in general and home-based small business entrepreneurs, in particular, gravitate to this form of self-promotion like bugs to a strong light source in the dark of night. Yet just like the bugs, many of the smaller businesses get burned not because the product was unsuccessful or the presentation less than professional but instead because the interest simply could not be generated by the participants in the affiliate marketing network who chose to sign up.
In general, those signing up to post links and banners or search boxes onto their sites are looking for the heavy hitters which will lend credibility to the webmaster and her or his site, while smaller merchants are usually avoided because they simply do not offer that air of mainstream acceptance to a site.
In the same vein, many of the webmasters who sign up for the smaller business affiliate marketing network will most likely be startups themselves, thus in a way countermanding the business’ efforts of reaching a large number of potential customers. Even though the money spent on this kind of advertising is low, it hardly merits the results that are being yielded.
Interestingly, a new trend is developing which is finding great acceptance with smaller businesses and which is proofing for being a money maker to such an extent that it threatens to leave the tried and true pay-per-click or pay-for-performance affiliate marketing network in the dust for home-based entrepreneurs: classified ads. Building an affiliate marketing network via the classifieds may sound odd but the more careful attention you pay to this trend, the more sense it makes.
With a few words, you have the chance to advertise your network and generate a far-reaching interest in the business. While not each and every online or print publication will permit you to post your ads, in general, you will find that you can start getting out the word about your network by posting in a few free, online publications.
Research the high traffic sites and post your ads in accordance with their submission guidelines – a much-overlooked fact that may get your ad buried if not carefully observed! Use strong marketing words that require a response by the reader, such as “clicking” or “visiting” and rely on heavy hitters like “proven” or “guaranteed” – only if you can back up the claims, of course.
Add a measurable and real benefit to the action, and the odds are good that you will have a visitor for your site. Turning the visitor into a qualified lead, of course, is up to the quality of your site and actual network.