Friday, May 30, 2008

Internet and Affiliate Marketing – finding the good guys!

One of the most noticeable aspects of the world of Internet and Affiliate Marketing is the uneven split between the good guys, who seem to be in a minority, and the rest who seem to be a mixture of possible (or even confirmed) scammers, and way, way over the top hype writers.

You know the latter guys, I’m sure. They’re the ones who over-promise so much that it really does make you laugh. In my experience, many of these guys are not actually running a scam, but you find it hard not to see it that way. They’ve clearly been stuck in the marketing world of the 60s or 70s where hard sells promised you the earth, only to deliver a 1,000 square feet apartment. But, hey, that’s actually not so bad, is it.

No the guys to watch out for are those who charge you a fee for joining their directory membership list, but don’t even bother to offer a money-back guarantee, and of course fail to tell you that once you’ve got their list, most of it is out of date.

The good guys ARE out there. Some of the things to look for:

· How long have they been in business? If it’s more than two or three years, that’s a good pointer towards honesty and a genuine site

· Do they carry a certificate from Web Trust or similar? Those who do have usually been through some due diligence by the providers of the certification.

· Do they have a search facility which allows you to check that there are providers of the service you’re keen on, within an area that’s convenient for you. On my site (please see my details below) especially on the page devoted to getting paid to advertise on your car, or providing a free new one, I’ve made a point of only supporting affiliates who offer this search facility. It’s a great sign of their integrity.

· Have good review sites, like Top Site Review, given their recommendation to the site? I’ve found them particularly useful as they have tested out claims of money-back guarantees, and unless they have worked without hassle, the site does not get recommended.

· If you’re looking to become an affiliate yourself, does the site you’re considering state they will pay you themselves or go through a trusted intermediary like Clickbank? I’d be far more wary of those who say they’ll pay you themselves. I’ve found both Clickbank to be very efficient and prompt in their payments.

In conclusion, I’d say that I do not believe or expect to become extra-ordinarily wealthy through my online affiliate marketing business, but I do know that I can make a pretty comfortable living, provided I’ve not only chosen the right affiliate partners, but also, of course, that I have properly optimized my site for the top search engines.

If you follow a similar approach, either as a affiliate partner or as a member of the companies offering their directory services, you should find a similar outcome.

Michael is a British citizen, but long term resident of Asia (Hong Kong and now Malaysia).
After 25 years with a global banking leader, he began to head up his own Management consulting company, and today this successful business has branched out to include database/direct marketing aswell as Internet and Affiliate Marketing. Michael may be contacted through his web site or directly via email

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