Tag : cryptocurrency

Winning at Affiliate Survivor

affiliate survivalSometimes being an affiliate can be like participating in Survivor. To win you have to need to outwit, outlast, and outplay your competitors.

There’s a reason the show Survivor has endured on TV for 36 seasons. The premise is very simple. However, it plays out with unexpected twists and turns each time as the mix of various personalities navigate a social experiment with many factors out of their control. Participants surely understand the basics. Many are even super-fans or devoted students of the game. But crucial to the competition are adaptability and savvy in all facets of the game.

And while there’s no getting voted off the affiliate island, consumers do “vote”with their wallets. That means affiliates must be able to deftly navigate a myriad of areas including social, content, brand building, SEO, business planning and more. Faltering in any of those areas might extinguish your affiliate aspirations. Game over.

Outwit

Have a Plan – You’ve got to have a plan and execute on it. It’s inevitable  that things change – and rapidly. You’ll need to adapt and be flexible. But without a solid plan going in or an evolving plan, you’re not going to be able to move forward.You should review your business plans every 6 months and update as necessary.

Go Deep – Going a mile wide and an inch deep, isn’t going to get you to success. Instead think about doing the opposite. By focusing on a very specific niche and taking deeper dive into that specific market, you’ll be able to better serve the needs of the audience. It’s a more effective tactic to have a small, extremely loyal user base. , than a huge base that isn’t invented in what you are promoting. Maybe as a travel affiliate your niche is Las Vegas or vacationing families or roadtrippers or foodies.

Outplay

Leverage Content – One way to outplay rivals is to create content they can’t compete with. Because affiliates are often smaller companies they are more nimble than the brands they promote. This enables them to innovate more quickly. That’s true of leveraging content marketing as well. Creating unique, compelling content that has a laser focus on the target market, can be done very quickly by affiliates. And by using analytics it’s simple to see what resonates with the audience and what converts.

Be a Trendsetter – Get in front of breakout and seasonal trends. If you’re planning in advance it’s easier to see in July what might be hot for the holidays. There are also more seasonal events emerging – like Spring Break. Always be on the lookout for new trends in pop culture, art, among celebrities, etc. Often trends from other areas can be easily translated (with a bit of creativity) to specific niches. It might be a color that is hot, a style of decor or a something in fashion. For example if you’re a travel affiliate, you could leverage a return to nostalgia. More people are looking for experience getaways that recreate their childhood – like renting an RV and visiting all the National Parks or taking in baseball games at several major league parks.

Get Creative with Content – Think beyond the blog. Posts are great for some content. But think about mixing it up. You can use quizzes, infographics, video, reviews, user generated content. unusual content formats for recommending products and more. Variety keeps regular visitors interested. It also adds interest and can help with search rankings. Check out more ways to get creative with your content.

Outlast

Build a Brand – Consider what you’re doing to develop the brand of your affiliate website. That’s because brand building comes with many benefits. They include recognition, loyalty, a perception of size and quality, and the perception of experience and reliability.  These combine to provide a significant comfort level for potential customers. Establishing overall trust helps shoppers eventually become repeat customers, which can increase average order value and lifetime customer value – all important success metrics.

Think Recurring Revenue – With affiliate marketing, there is no assurance that your current strategy will work in a month. It could be Google updating their ranking algorithm, your favorite affiliate program shutting down, or media buying costs increasing. It’s wise to mitigate against the possibility of major changes.

Diversify Revenue –  Don’t rely on a single traffic source or a single monetization method. Affiliate, pay-per-click, sponsorships, paid placements all help your affiliate business from being vulnerable to one source of making money.

Look for New Promotional Opportunities – There may be some brands that perform well for your affiliate sites, but consider also joining new programs. Don’t get stuck in what’s working now. But you may be overlooking other programs to help increase your affiliate revenue and work well with in your niche.

Take Advantage of Tech Trends – Staying on top of what’s hot in tech can put you ahead of the competition. Whether it’s AI, chatbots, new mobile tech, blockchain and cryptocurrency developments or whatever else is coming down the pike, it’s always an advantage to be thinking about how developments might impact your business. Or better yet, how you can leverage that tech to make more money.

Careful consideration of all these areas can help make you the ultimate affiliate survivor with a sustainable, successful business.

What Affiliates Must Know About Cryptocurrency

bitcoin cryptocurrencyAs an affiliate it’s hard to stay on top of all the new innovations, developments and technology advances.

One topic you probably hear pop up a lot is Bitcoin or cryptocurrency. You may have wondered how, or even if, Bitcoin impacts your business. That depends on many factors – if you want to part of a program that sell the cryptocurrency; if you want to be paid in Bitcoin,  or if you just want to understand how some of the underlying currency shifts might affect consumer buying behavior in the future.

Regardless of why you’re interested in Bitcoin, here are some basics to help you have an understanding of the cryptocurrency.

What is Bitcoin

Bitcoin is a cryptocurrency and worldwide payment system. It is the first decentralized digital currency. Meaning it works without a central bank or single administrator.Transactions are verified by network nodes using cryptography, These transactions are recorded in a public, distributed ledger called a blockchain. Bitcoin was invented by an unknown person or group of people under the name Satoshi Nakamoto and released as open-source software in 2009.

Bitcoins are created as a reward for a process known as mining. They can be exchanged for other currencies, products, and services. As of February 2015, over 100,000 merchants and vendors accept bitcoin as payment. Research produced by the University of Cambridge estimates that in 2017, there were 2.9 to 5.8 million unique users using a cryptocurrency wallet, most of them using bitcoin.

You can also read an explainer here.

Ok, So Now What?

Because there is consumer interest in obtaining Bitcoin, many cryptocurrency businesses have launched affiliate marketing programs. These programs (which include exchanges, sweepstakes, crypto wallets, and more) are using the affiliate channel as a way to promote their services and offers to a wider audience. These programs – which can be CPA or a revenue share – are often paid out in Bitcoin (or other cryptocurrencies)

Affiliates can join programs that invite miners, and gain a percentage of their profits, or gain a fixed amount of cryptocurrency in exchange.The number of such Bitcoin affiliate programs is on the rise. However, because of the constantly evolving nature of this growing space, not all programs will survive the changes. There is a big earning potential for affiliates, but there are associated levels of risk. Thorough research into specific program terms and conditions is always advised.

Blockchain Potential

A lot of attention has been paid to the potential of the underlying transactional blockchain technology. Some say there are viable applications for it in healthcare, finance, insurance, and digital marketing as well.

The verifiable “chain” of transactions makes it attractive. And for digital marketing, there is the notion that it could potentially aid in the tracking and fraud detection. The idea being that blockchain technology could track where clicks come from and ensure clicks were generated by actual people and not an automated process  – like a bot.

Although, the tracking process is currently automated via a tracking pixel, this process can be manipulated, hacked and abused. Additionally, since tracking information is currently stored on in a central location (like the server for the affiliate program), it can be vulnerable to hacking, human error, and equipment malfunction. When blockchain is used, these errors are impossible. The information is stored on all the computers in the network that communicate between each other.

In addition, the use of smart contracts ensures all tracking is 100% accurate and fraud is avoided. This means every time someone clicks on the affiliate referral link, a smart contract is created. It has a unique id of that specific visitor, with the timestamp and the activity in question. This information would be available to both the advertiser and the publisher. And it can’t be manipulated in any way.

Consumer Interest

There are many reasons you should care or at least be aware of cryptocurrencies. The most important is that more consumers are starting to demand paying with them. This shift towards alternative payment methods has prompted online retailers to begin accepting it for their goods and services.. According to a recent article, major brands including Overstock, Expedia, Microsoft, Newegg and others now let buyers pay with cryptocurrency. Currently, Amazon doesn’t accept Bitcoin, but there is a lot of speculation that the online giant is moving in that direction. There are several lists hat are frequently updated with those retailers accepting Bitcoin payments.

In addition to being a secure way to pay, many consumers are interested in the value of Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies.This heightened awareness of cryptocurrencies is only expected to fuel further adoption by both consumers and retailers.

As an affiliate, understanding the basics of the cryptocurrencies may also help you differentiate your marketing marketing efforts as you promote certain goods and services from retailers that accept those types of payments.

The future of cryptocurrency is still taking shape. As more consumers and merchants gain knowledge of the market, it will be necessary to watch this space. It will also be smart to make modifications to your affiliate business leverage its popularity.