While not quite a beginner at affiliate marketing, I had never heard James Martell speak before, so while at Affiliate Summit West 2011 in Las Vegas, I attended his session, Making Money With Affiliate Programs for Beginners. Although it was a session targeted towards beginners, sometimes its great to hear what you already know to remind yourself that you know it 🙂

James did a great job with his presentation, and you could tell he’s a well-polished speaker. He outlined what was going to be covered, then told the audience about himself very quickly, which I appreciated.

James Martell

James Martell speaking at Affiliate Summit West 2011

Some of what James covered included:

The 5 Industry Players

  1. Advertiser / Merchant
  2. Publishers / Affiliates
  3. Affiliate Networks
  4. Agencies / OPMs
  5. Customers

7 Popular Affiliate Models

  1. Coupon sites
  2. Shopping comparison sites
  3. Niche Review sites
    Example given: Piano Keyboard Reviews: $4k in December, all organic traffic.
  4. Loyalty sites
  5. Email lists
  6. Podcasting sites
  7. Hybrid sites
    Build your own product, be an affiliate, sell an e-book, membership site

5 Tips for Choosing Profitable Topics

  1. Cost: over $150
  2. Brand: well known
  3. Reviews: make sure it’s a good product
  4. Merchant: good commission, reputable
  5. Search Volume
  6. Competition (yeah, 6 points in this list of 5)

5 Web Development Strategies

  1. Use WordPress
  2. Build pages, not sites
  3. Hire professional writers
  4. Avoid clutter
  5. Add YOU
    1. Your photo to the site header
    2. About the editor page
  6. Automate your updates (RSS to email) (another 6th in a list of 5)

A few times, James said, focus on building webpages, not websites. Not sure I agree, or maybe I don’t fully understand, but I think his point is keep building content.

James then went on to run through some top free traffic building strategies, strategies to keep people coming back, and analytics tools. I didn’t find these points too interesting, but while talking about YouTube as a traffic-building strategy, James did give some good tips (Add a link (URL, no HTML) to your description, write a good description (it’s like Excite circa 1999)) and showed some of his videos as examples. The session wrapped up with:

10 Tips to Get on the Right Track:

  1. Give yourself time to succeed
  2. Build a virtual team
  3. Learn how to outsource
  4. 15-minute rule: don’t spend more than 15 minutes on something that’s not your specialty
  5. Become a student again (learn to do things the right way, don’t hack it)
  6. Set goals
  7. 80% of your time should be spent promoting your site, not building it
  8. Track & Measure
  9. Reward yourself (work hard, play hard)
  10. Focus

Overall, this was a great session, for beginners & experienced affiliates alike. James covered a lot of content, and kept the pace moving quickly. I’m glad I introduced myself to him before the session, as afterward there were plenty of people lined up to talk to James.

James Martell runs the Affiliate Marketers SUPER BootCamp, an online training for new affiliates to get started with affiliate marketing. While I’m not endorsing the program, I can say that listening to James speak was a great opportunity and I’m glad to have chosen to attend his session.

3 Comments » for ASW11 Session Recap: Making Money With Affiliate Programs for Beginners
  1. Dan Lew says:

    Looks like he went over some interesting topics, too bad I couldn’t make the affiliate summit, maybe next year!

  2. Bob says:

    This is a great help to all new affiliates most especially beginners in affiliate system. Hope it will help me too.

  3. Sheldon says:

    Yeah, this is some good info. Small tidbits that we all need reminded of. Especially that 15 minute rule, golden!

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