Don’t Believe Anything Without Testing it Yourself

How many times have you read an article or blog post about something in this niche, only to test it yourself and have completely different results? If you have, congratulations! That means you’ll probably end up making a decent penny in this field. However, there are so many affiliates out there, new and old alike, that simply take anything they read or hear and actually listen to it without doing any testing of their own!

I was reading over some blogs today when I came across a post that Chad over at CDFnetworks wrote called Mini Sites for PPC are Dead. Now, normally I love the advice that Chad gives out, in fact, I visit his blog almost daily to see if he’s released anything good. However, this particular post made me upset at first. I thought to myself, how dare this guy give his users bad information.

I cooled down very quickly and thought to myself, “Is he really giving his users bad information? He isn’t having success with mini sites so he says that mini-sites are dead. Is it really the fault of the blogger or does the fault come down to the fact that readers aren’t testing stuff themselves?”

I very quickly decided that it was the latter of the two and it was the fault of the readers. Now personally I still have very good luck with “Mini Sites” and in fact I still believe they strive. I’m not saying they will for years to come, but the way he worded his post, he made it sound like they were dead as of the time he wrote that post. I don’t agree with this, but again I don’t feel Chad gave bad advice.

There are so many blogs out there about making money online and affiliate marketing that offer advice to their readers. However, I feel that a lot of time as readers, including myself, we take what we read on each blog as a golden rule and we must believe it and follow it. This simply isn’t true! How many times have you heard an affiliate marketer say that there are many ways to succeed in affiliate marketing? If this is the case, why do you only take the advice of one blogger?

I know affiliate marketers that are still direct linking and make $50,000+ a month! So you’re telling me that mini sites are dead but direct linking isn’t? Of course not, both are still very much alive at this point. So why did Chad say what he said?

Well, as I said above, we (affiliate marketers) have many different ways of succeeding in this field. I’ve seen people do one thing and they are completely successful with it, however, I see another person do the same exact thing and they can’t make it work. We each have our own set of knowledge and ideas. We all think differently! So while, direct linking may not work for me, I suck at direct linking, there are plenty of people out there that are making a killing by simply direct linking!

Again, this isn’t an attack against Chad and hopefully he doesn’t read this and get upset at me! My point, is that we run blogs that provide information on how to get started in affiliate marketing, news about affiliate marketing, etc, yet, we are only providing our opinions. Don’t be stupid! Take our advice and then try it out for yourself. Just because something doesn’t work for us doesn’t mean it won’t work for you!

There is one thing you can learn from every blogger in this field that will always remain true! TEST EVERYTHING!

Affiliate Summit Wrap-up and How To Prepare For Next Time

What’s up guys.

So unfortunately ASE has come to and end, but it was awesome and Derek and I had a blast. To anybody that has never been to a summit before, definitely invest into the next one (Vegas ’08), it’s worth WELL over what you pay.

I’ll quickly go over what the rest of the summit was like for those of you who enjoyed reading my experience at my first summit.

Monday Night

Since I left of Monday in the afternoon, I’ll pick up at nightfall. Azoogle took me, Derek, and another publisher Steve out to dinner at a great resturant. Food was amazing, and they paid the tab…can’t complain. Went to a couple smaller parties (Jamster was one and I think Pepperjam sponsored the other), then headed off to the big Copeac/WickedFire bash at mansion.

Tuesday

Last day of the seminars, and they were alright. There’s a lot to talk about, but the highlight seminar for me was the last seminar given by Kris at PepperJam. Tuesday night was great as well, we went to the restaurant at the summit hotel. Got to dine with some great people including Amit and Felix Leshno. Checked out the party at the pool where they gave away prizes, then for the rest of the night hung out with friends and one of the affiliate managers from NeverBlue.

Today/Overall Wrapup

Today was just a relaxing day. Went out to the beach, went around town a little, hung out with some guys I met up here, and relaxed. All in all, Aff Summit was great for so many reasons. The networking everybody talks about from these events is so true and so unbelievable. It’s also great to be able to really put faces with names and have some face-to-face conversations. Meeting new friends in the industry is also an awesome thing as well.

What I Recommend For Those Wanting to Go To Their First Summit

1) Business cards. Even if you’re just an affiliate with no real business, get biz cards made. Everyone assumes you have them, so don’t be without them. Plus without business cards, you’ll have to do something like slap the person in the face to get them to remember you.

2) Read blogs and know big affiliates. Most people going to their first summit want to hang out with Shoemoney or start a conversation with a big affiliate. It’s so easy to do it (they’re just normal people, you could be there in 14 months and you wouldn’t think you were any different), and even easier if you follow their blog (if they have one).

3) Keep a notepad in your pocket. You never know when you’ll hear (or overhear LOL) a tip coming from somewhere. I’ve been at parties with a group, and I here a group behind me and I hear someone talking to the guy with him and softly saying “…yeah I’m making a killing on _______, it’s a great offer”. If something like that happens, whip out the notepad and jot it down (especially if you’re drunk and will forget it the next day). I wrote down a ton of little snippets I heard, things that get best ctr, hot offers, etc.).

4) Pay attention at seminars. Seminars are school that will actually give you knowledge to make a lot of money – not like traditional school. So while you’re still paying money, you actually get a return on the investment. Some seminars aren’t really that helpful, but just go to every one you can and take notes. I’ve learned a good amount of small tips here and there for them.

5) Bring cash…and lots of it. If you were anything like me, you’ll find yourself dishing money left and right all day on tips. Taxi drivers, drinks (expensive drinks), dinners (expensive dinners), those bathroom dudes, everyone. Alright I didn’t tip the bathroom dude but I was in a hurry. Point being, always have some cash on you. Don’t carry $5,000 in cash, but always have a few hundred in there.

6) Millionaires are real people too. I touched upon it in an earlier point, but I want to expand a little. I think there’s a big misconception in well-known big affiliates. They’re awesome people and awesome marketers (most better than me), but they’re not any different from you. The only difference is that they have some more experience in the field. So if you want to talk to somebody, just go up and introduce yourself. I’ve never met Shoemoney before, but the first night Derek and I just saw him hanging out in front of the hotel. He mentions he’s hungry, so we go and ask him to get something to eat. It was a good dinner, we had some good conversation, but I didn’t ask him to let me buy stock in AuctionAds or something lol, we just hung out. I would have asked any other Joe out there to go get something to eat, just to hang out and talk to other people in the industry. So if you see somebody you’d like to meet, just go up and start talking to them.

7) Make extra luggage space. If you’re a t-shirt whore like me, you’ll wind up with almost 20 extra t-shirts on the flight home. So make sure you find a place to stuff them all. Luckily I won some luggage and an iPod from the Azoogle booth (woooot Audrey, Erin, Chantelle, Adam, everybody you guys rock), so I got to stuff all my shirts in there.

8) Really explore other networks. I know a lot of you guys are stuck using just 1 or 2 networks, but if you really go around to all the booths and talk to everyone, it really opens your eyes up. Not to leave the networks you’re with now or do any less with them, but another network might have an exclusive offer that you may end up killing.

9) Follow-up with relationships. Unless you’re a hermit, when you go to Affiliate Summit, you’re going to create the foundation to a lot of relationships, both business and personal. It’s partially your job to keep those relationships alive and growing (moreso your job if they’re someone who deals with tons of people and can’t keep track of everything to remember to email you or something). If you really expand upon the relationships you started, good things can come from it.

10) Put that sh*t to action. You will have learned a ton, and will have seen that making a lot of money online really isn’t that hard. So right away take what you learned, and start building new campaigns with it. Don’t give yourself ANY chance to be lazy and start slacking, just get out there and do things.

Alright that’s enough for me right now, it’s 4am and I have to get up in 4 hours so I need some sleep. Affiliate Summit was awesome, and everybody thinking about it should go to the next. Derek actually scored 2 free passes for us next time, so I’ll definitely be there.

Any questions or anything, just drop a comment here or email me at surnova@gmail.com.

Affiliate Summit Day 1

What’s up guys, Paul here (I’m gettin a little snapshot picture of my mugshot to go with each post so you always know it’s me and not one of Derek’s posts).

I’ve finally gotten a chance to take a breather here at AS, got a few minutes to put on the bathrobe and sit down and blog/relax. Affiliate Summit is awesome so far, already well worth the money invested going to it. I have a ton of pictures that I’m going to upload when I get home, I forgot the wire to connect my camera to my computer. If anything, it’s worth it to go for the free t-shirts haha. So for those of your curious as to what goes on in a typical day, I’ll give a little “tour” of my experience so far at my first summit :

Saturday

Flew all evening Saturday, and got in about 11 o’clock. I was standing outside the hotel lobby and spotted Shoemoney talking to some people. So I went up, started talking to him. Found out that he was hungry, so went out to Dennys to have some late night dinner (or early morning breakfast, we were there until about 4am). Had a nice conversation, Jeremy’s an awesome guy. Alright so that was cool and I get back and get to bed about 5am.

Sunday

Sunday was the registration for the summit. We registered, then met up with our good friend Santiago, a member of our forum. He took us out on his boat, and we went into the ocean and chilled on a sandbar for a while. Got some dinner, and then headed to the Under the Stars party. Awesome time there, met some more cool people, hung out with Shoe for a couple hours. I got some pictures with a nice fella from CaptchaKiller.com, so somebody has them and if I get it I’ll post it up. Went up to a little private party thing (I dunno if it was) on the roof in the penthouse of the hotel. Open bars are awesome.

Monday (today)

Today is the first day that the seminars started. I slept in a little too late and missed the opening speech, not really a huge deal. First I went to a speech that Joel Comm gave on contextual advertising. Not really PPC affiliate marketing stuff, but he’s knows his stuff and it was a great speech on programs like AdSense, YPN, Auctions Ads, etc.

Went to lunch after that, picked up business cards, and headed to the second seminar. Jay Berkowitz gave a speech on The Ten Critical Affiliate Strategies. Solid speech with lots of information as to where the web is going (with 2.0), and relating that back to affiliate strategies.

Next came my favorite speech of the conference so far, Amit Mehta from Super Affiliate Mindset (great blog) gave a speech on Secrets of a PPC Super Affiliate. Maybe it was my favorite because it was targetted the most to me so far. He talked all about setting up campaigns, researching keywords/niches, how to get them rolling, just a bunch of stuff. Emotional speaker, funny guy, was a really great speech.

Now I’m just relaxing in the hotel, waiting until a domain auction starts at 6:30 that I’m going to run and check out for a little. After that it’s to the main event – Affiliate Bash at the Mansion. I’m pumped for this, it’s gonna be awesome.

I wish I could post pictures of what I have so far to make this post a little more colorful, but ah well you’ll see them in a few days.

Once the conference is over, I’ll make a write-up about the things I learned from it, the things you should prepare for in going to a seminar like this one, and just other useful things I gathered from the experience. It’s great so far though, and if you guys have any questions just comment here and I’ll answer them. Make sure to subscribe so you don’t miss my next posts about the Summit and the main points that were taught.

Affiliate Summit 2007 Update

Hey guys, well Paul and I are enjoying Affiliate Summit 2007 and I thought I would give a quick update as I’m sitting here in the Hotel. First off let me just say…This is our first conference as we have just never wanted to fork out the money for one of these things as they are quite expensive. However, let me tell you its worth it…totally worth it. If you are in affiliate marketing you need to be here 😀 Anyways, we went out to Breakfast last night well early this morning about 3AM with Shoemoney and talked with him for a couple of hours. That was alot of fun. We went boating today with Santiago (a member of the forums) who lives here in Miami and invited us out. And now we are getting ready to goto a party, so until the next update!

Affiliate Summit 2007!!!

Hey guys, just wanted to let you all know that Paul and I will be heading to Miami, Florida tomorrow afternoon and arriving in Miami sometime late tomorrow night. So if anyone out there wants to show us a good time leave a comment with an email addy or some way to contact you 😀 Or send an email to clickconsultants [at] gmail [dot] com.

Of course we will be updating while we are there and we will get some pictures of Affiliate Summit up on the blog for your viewing pleasure.

Peace out and see you in Miami!