Tag Archives: Grow

How to Find Affiliates to Grow Your Business

How to Find AffiliatesHow to Find Affiliates for Your Products and Services

Once you know you want an affiliate program, you need to find affiliates. Finding affiliates is a combination of simply asking people and letting interested parties know about your program. In addition, you can encourage people to be an affiliate by offering excellent products, top-notch customer service, and a by offering generous commission. Learning how to find affiliates for your business will change everything you do from now on. Here are the very best strategies to do this today…

  • Direct Contact – Find competitors and others who market to your audience who do not offer exact products or services as you and approach them directly. Work first to build relationships with these people in online groups, via joint ventures, events, and more and you’ll be certain to get a percentage of these people to sign up for your affiliate program and promote your products and services.
  • Clients – Your best affiliates can come from people who have purchased from you. Definitely, run an email series for your customers to encourage them to earn money by recommending your products to their friends and family. This is a great way to end up with a true fan as an affiliate.
  • Colleagues – Even if you work from home, you are likely part of a group of like-minded individuals online and / or offline. Ensure that you let these people know that you have an affiliate program so that they can choose to join if they want to. You can also if you’ve used the right type of software, give special commission amounts to people you know.
  • Movers & Shakers – You’ve seen them on Twitter, Facebook groups, and probably on numerous webinars and other places. These big earners shake things up. Work toward building a relationship with them, then make it super simple for them to promote by giving them a free copy, graphics, and more. Offer to set it all up for them so that all they have to do is collect the money when they make sales. As a fellow “mover and shaker” you can bet I always know how to find affiliates.
  • Conferences – You can also meet potential affiliates at live events and conferences. Whether you’re a speaker or an attendee, you may meet people who need to offer your products to their audience. Make it worth their while to promote you, by also promoting them.
  • Print Publications – You can place ads in relevant print publicans such as work at home magazines and other magazines devoted to people who are interested in this type of income opportunity.
  • Social Media – If you join groups and friend people online, ensure that you also connect with potential affiliates. Take the time to get to know them. When it’s appropriate, let them know about your affiliate program. You can use social media also to talk about how excited you are about your affiliate program. The more enthusiastic you are about the program, the more they will want to join to earn money.
  • Blogging – Use your blog part of the time, to speak to potential affiliates. Your blog provides your audience with solutions to their problems. But, once you have an affiliate program, you can also mention how you want to help as many people as possible and your readers can help by becoming an affiliate.
  • Forums/Groups – Any groups you’re part of, online or offline, can be great places to find affiliates. The best thing to do is to build relationships with people you think would like and promote your products. Offer to do things for them, make your program so inviting that they can’t resist.
  • Online Ads – Another way to attract affiliates is to advertise the program and its benefits. You can use Facebook, Twitter, or even Ad Words to market the program. This works very well, if you have a good product funnel, offer excellent commissions, and a wide range of products for your niche.
  • Your Website – Don’t forget that your website is the hub of your business. Keep reminder info and an affiliate program link in a prominent place on your site. This can be short and link to further information about the program details.
  • Word-of-Mouth – People like to talk, so if you do a good job taking care of your affiliates plus offering really great products then super affiliates will notice you and talk about you. Plus, when they start promoting your products, other people in their circle will notice and join too.
  • Cold Calls – If you know people already that promote other people’s products and you’re sure that your product fits in with their niche, go ahead and drop them an email, or even get them on the phone. Be ready to explain what is so great about your product and how it benefits their audience. Plus, explain how you’re going to make it super easy for them to be part of your program.
  • Hire an Affiliate Manager – Even if you’re just starting your program, hiring an affiliate manager can help you grow your affiliate program faster. Hire someone who is familiar with your niche, who has connections to promote to super affiliates and who understands the software you use. A good affiliate manager will know exactly how to find affiliates for you.
  • Directories – There are directories, such as affiliatesseeking.com, where you can list your affiliate program. They do require a link back, but it’s free. More than likely, you won’t find as many affiliates this way since building relationships is very important. However, it does help direct potential affiliates to your opportunity.
  • Affiliate Networks – Another great way to find affiliates is to list your products in affiliate networks such as Clickbank.com or JVZOO.com. Marketers who are looking for a product to promote often go there to search for products. Make sure you offer a great program, and a lucrative commission. Include tools to make promoting easy. These could articles, graphics, emails, etc.

Finding and recruiting affiliates is only part of starting an affiliate program. Now you need to make your affiliate offer worthy, appealing and timely. Plus, the more unique your offer is, the more affiliates you’ll recruit. Now that you know how to find affiliates, what other questions may I answer for you to help you grow your business?

I’m Connie Ragen Green, online marketing strategist, bestselling author, and international speaker on the topics of entrepreneurship and inner game mind shifts. Let’s connect to see how I may best serve you in the near future.


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Connecting With Influencers to Grow Your Business

Connecting with InfluencersAre You Connecting With Influencers For Your Business?

I’m not sure when I was first introduced to the concept of “influencers” but it was quite intriguing to me at the time. The concept included the ideas that certain people, whether they are in your local community, somewhere else in the world you spend time in frequently, or in your online community have the connections and the ability to help others in achieving their business or personal goals.

These goals range in diversity from being introduced to someone you’d like to meet with for coffee, someone you would like to have an a client, or even someone you would like to interview for your podcast. When I was first online I dreamed of meeting these influencers and even of becoming one myself in the future.

The first step with this strategy is to make a list of the people you would most like to connect with, and the reason why this would be of value to them and to you. I was somewhat reluctant to even start such a list at first, but after having a mentor who required us to make a list of people we wanted to collaborate or joint venture with I understood the value of this type of thought process and list.

Never one to pass up an opportunity, I began by adding the biggest names to my list, along with the reason why I wanted to connect with them. It didn’t matter if these people seemed far out of my circle of influence, or if the reason I wanted to connect with them was more out of curiosity than solid business, I still added their names. I was on a quest to begin connecting with influencers to build my business!

Within a few weeks I found myself at my first Rotary Club meeting in my community, and wouldn’t you know it that three of the names on my list were there in the flesh! One was the new Mayor, another was a man who had been named to the “Forty Under 40” group that summer, and the third was a woman who wrote a type of “society page” column for the local newspaper. I was dumbstruck at first but soon found my voice and introduced myself to each of them. In that moment I realized that connecting with people, whether I thought of them as influencers or not, was something I would benefit from implementing on a regular basis. Something inside of me shifted and I went from the feeling of “me” and “them” to “us” when it came to connecting with others for mutual benefit.

My recommendation to you is that you start your list right away. And remember to include the reason why you would like to connect with each person so that you may more easily prioritize your actions later on. Then go about the process of reaching out to each person in a personal and professional way. This has become much easier to do because of social media, but don’t be surprised if you still run into gatekeepers for certain people you want to connect with further. Be polite, professional, and persistent and see where that takes you. As you begin to connect, ask people for an introduction to someone else on your list. Your reputation will grow and your life will change as a result of connecting with influencers.

I’m Connie Ragen Green, an author, international speaker, and online marketing strategist for entrepreneurship. Connect with me at ConnieRagenGreen.com and let’s discover how we can work together.

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Connecting With Prospects to Grow Your Business

Connecting with ProspectsConnecting With Prospects

Do you know that your prospects are waiting for you to connect with them? That’s right, the people you want to serve by sharing your knowledge, experience, and expertise on your chosen topic are just as anxious to connect with you as you are with them.

How can you do this quickly and easily? By leveraging the power of the internet with your writing, speaking, and presentations. Everything you write or say turns into an electronic salesperson seeking out your ideal prospects. Allow me to explain in further detail.

Your blog is your home on the internet, and as such provides you with the perfect platform for sharing what you know about your topic. Post to your blog at least twice a week for best results, and then share your post with your list, your social media connections, and with anyone who finds you online through the specific words (sometimes referred to as your keywords) you are using in your posts.

I’m finding that my prospects tend to be on LinkedIn more than on Facebook or Twitter, so that’s where I spend the majority of my effort in connecting with prospects. And the same person who is on all three of these sites tends to be more focused on business while they are on LinkedIn, even though I’m not sure exactly why this is the case.

I have two primary blogs and continue to post to each of them on a regular basis because the results continue to be spectacular. Over the past decade I’ve written more than two thousand posts that serve me well as my business grows.

But don’t stop there. Remember that people prefer to learn in different ways and that not everyone likes to read. What I am saying is that many people prefer to listen to the information they are seeking. Hosting your own teleseminars is an excellent way to get started with this, and you may also want to go a step further and turn your calls into podcasts.

I have been doing this regularly since the end of 2007 and find that it continues to help me connect with prospects on a daily basis.

Also, the more you write and speak the more proficient you become at each of these skills. Practice is an important part of becoming a successful online entrepreneur.

The final method of connecting with prospects is to create short videos to post to your YouTube channel. Keep them under five minutes in length and be sure to say your name and website at the beginning and at the end of each video. My videos tend to be more about my lifestyle, but I also use them to give training on specific parts of my business.

Connecting with prospects on a regular basis will help you to grow your business exponentially over a short period of time. It will also hone your skills as an author, speaker, and presenter. Becoming more skilled as a professional will serve you well for years to come and help you to help others more completely.


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Content Curation Marketing to Grow Your Online Business

Content Curation MarketingContent Curation Marketing

I first heard about content curation from my good friend and colleague Marlon Sanders back in 2010. He was sharing his results from a course he was promoting on this topic, and frankly, I didn’t get it. It was my mistake not to spend some time discussing this with him to learn what he knew that I did not. Eventually I understood the concept and now content curation marketing is a regular part of my online business strategies.

Recently I was reading an excellent post from Steven Rosenbaum is the CEO of Magnify.net, a real-time video curation engine for publishers, brands, and websites. He’s also the author of Curation Nation. His post, 5 Tips for Great Content Curation, really got me thinking about this important topic. In in he shares his five best practices for content curation marketing:

“If you’re a curator looking for some boundaries in what feels like the Wild West, here are five best practices to consider.

1. Be Part of the Content Ecosystem

Be part of the content ecosystem, not just a re-packager of it. Often, people think of themselves as either creators or curators as if these two things are mutually exclusive. What a curator really should do is embrace content as both a maker and an organizer. The most successful curators include sites like The Huffington Post, that embrace the three-legged-stool philosophy of creating some content, inviting visitors to contribute some content, and gathering links and articles from the web. Created, contributed, and collected — the three ‘c’s is a strong content mix that has a measurable impact. Why? Because your visitors don’t want to hunt around the web for related material. Once they find a quality, curated collection, they’ll stay for related offerings.

2. Follow a Schedule

Audiences expect some regularity, and they’ll reward you for it. It doesn’t need to be a schedule that you can’t keep up with. If you want to curate three new links a day, and write one big post a week, that’s a schedule. Make sure to post at the same time each week. This is so readers know when to expect new material from you. Consistency and regularity will also bring you new users, and help you grow a loyal base of members who appreciate your work. A good example of someone who gets why a schedule makes a difference is Jason Hirschhorn via his MediaReDEF newsletter. He never misses a publish date.

3. Embrace Multiple Platforms

It used to be that your audience came to you. Not anymore. Today content consumers get their information on the platform of their choosing. That means you should consider posting short bursts on Tumblr, images on Pinterest, video on YouTube, and community conversations on Facebook. And don’t leave out established sites and publishers. If your audience hangs out on a blog, you may want to offer that publication some guest posts or even a regular column. Essentially, you have to bring your content contributions to wherever your readers may be.

4. Engage and Participate

Having a voice as a curator means more than creating and curating your own work. Make sure you’re giving back by reading others and commenting on their posts. A re-tweet is one of the easiest ways to help build relationships with fellow bloggers and curators. And your followers will appreciate that you’ve pointed them to good content. One word here, I never hit an RT without clicking through to read what I’m recommending. You can also lose followers if you don’t put in the effort to recommend material that you really think merits their attention.

5. Share. Don’t Steal.

Take the time to give attribution, links back, and credit. The sharing economy works because we’re each sharing our audiences, and providing the value of our endorsements. If you pick up someone’s work and put it on your blog, or mention a fact without crediting the source, you’re not building shared credibility. You’re just abusing someone else’s effort.”

The first and second of these “best practices” resonate with me the most; think of yourself as more of a publisher of content and then it doesn’t matter who wrote it originally, as long as you give proper and due credit when it was someone else’s idea. Also, sticking to a content curation marketing schedule will ensure your readership never goes more than a week or so without receiving additional content from you.

When I began teaching my Really Simple Content Marketing training course I made sure to spend enough time on content curation marketing so that my students would be able to get their content up and published with ease on a regular basis. Once you get into the flow of curation you’ll never want for content and people will think of you as an authority on your topic. Also, an added bonus is that they will tell you they see you “everywhere” on the Internet.

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Grow Your List

Grow Your ListYou’ve heard the benefits of why you need to grow your list, but sometimes it seems like too much darned work.

Maybe. Maybe not.

Because have you ever considered how hard you have to work when you DON’T have a list?

It’s one of the biggest mistakes of a freelancer. You get bogged down in client work and then suddenly, a few clients drop off. You have to scramble to fill that space in your client calendar, but wouldn’t it be much easier if you already had a mailing list of potential clients?

Or what if you’re an information product creator or eBook author? You get really excited about you next release, but nothing happens…because you don’t have a captive audience to sell it to. Imagine if each time you released a new product or book, your readers were just waiting to buy.

As a writer, there is no reason why you can’t have a ready source of clients and customers. You’ve already got the writing talent that makes it easy to grow your list. Put those skills to work with these proven list building ideas.

* Offer a useful free gift. This is one of the most common and popular tactics for building a list. Give your visitors something for free if they sign up. It could be a report, checklist, worksheet, video or anything you can think of. Remember, if you want your clients to hire you to write for them, don’t teach them how to write…but teach them how to use the writing you do to effectively grow their businesses.

* Include a graphical representation of your freebie. Whether it’s an ebook cover, CD or DVD (to reflect an audio or video recording), these visual elements can draw the eye into your offer and give your freebie a higher perceived value. Both those things will increase your opt-in rates.

* Create a focused opt-in or lead magnet page. It’s only purpose is to entice your visitors with the benefits of signing up for your list. Drive most of your traffic here, so you can grow your list more quickly.

* Share testimonials. If you’ve received feedback about your freebie or being on your mailing list, publish it. This kind of feedback is an important element of social proof that makes people want to sign up.

* Clearly tell the benefits and have a clear promise. Tell them in no uncertain terms what the benefit is of being on your list. This goes beyond the free document you’re offering them, but tell them the benefits of continuing to get email from you.

* Set expectations for how often they receive mail. People hate spam, but if you tell them exactly how often you’ll mail them, (E.g. “We’ll email you a few times per week with easy to digest gardening tips”) they’ll often be much more willing to sign up.

* Use a lightbox. A lightbox is a popover that greys out the rest of the screen when it pops over. It’s one of the most attention catching ways to build a list. You can also use pop-ups, page footers and other tools that let you display an opt-in offer to your visitors.

* Link to a sample issue. Link to an issue of your newsletter that people can look through. Make sure to put your best foot forward.

* Use Facebook, Google Adwords and YouTube Ads. Free content and offers are perfect for creating successful ad campaigns.

* Write a guest post around your freebie. For example, write a guest post about “17 Mistakes AdSense marketers make” if you have a free report about how to succeed with AdSense.

* Promote your list on social media. Especially try posting relevant responses to popular hashtags in your industry. Get your friends to share your content too.

* Create a viral video. Have a link to your signup page on the video (you can do this easily with YouTube’s editing tools) and also include it in the video’s description.

* Launch a podcast. Promote your list in your podcast or have them opt-in to receive instant notifications of new episodes.

* Offer a “Secret Blog Post”. Tell your blog audience that you’re going to release a blog post only to your email list. Give them hints on what it will be about. What problem will you solve? What secret will they learn?

* Give list members discounts. If you sell products or arrange for special offers, give the best deal to your subscribers. Use this as leverage to get new people on your list.

* Add a signup box on every page. Add it on the right, on the bottom or both. Make sure it’s visible throughout your website.

* Do a solo ad mailing. Buy solo ads from other people with mailing lists to promote your list.

* Do an ad swap. Mail a promotion to your list, then have someone else do the same with their list.

* Tell people who email you their question will be answered in the email list. Answer questions on your list rather than privately. Answering questions privately takes up too much of your time and benefits only one person, but when you can turn that answer into email content, everyone wins.

* Build your customer list. A customer list is even more valuable than a subscriber list because once a satisfied customer buy once, they’re more likely to buy again. Make sure you’re including your customers in your mailing list.

* Wall off long content. For example, on a 5 page article, make people sign in to their mailing list address after 2 pages to continue reading.

* Get them to share. Encourage your website visitors to refer a friend, share articles, etc. Install a “refer a friend” or “email this article” plugin. Add a note to the end of your emails to encourage sharing as well.

* Run a pay-per-lead affiliate campaign. Pay affiliates for every email signup they generate, rather than for sales. If you know what your short term or lifetime customer value is, you can come up with a cost-effective amount to pay your affiliates.

* Make it mandatory for free online tools. Give away free web tools, but make sure they sign up before using it.

* Add a signup form to your Facebook page. Facebook makes it easy to create a “sign up” button on your page and most autoresponder have a tool to make it easy to integrate with Facebook.

* Use press releases. Distribute press releases to online and offline media. Encourage press release readers to get your free offer.

* Have a sweepstakes or giveaway on your site. Encourage entrants to claim their free gift and subscribe to your mailing list. TIP: Don’t automatically add sweepstakes entrants to your main list as it’s not likely they’ll remember you or be particularly responsive. Have them opt-in directly to hear more from you.

* Host a free webinar to collect names and addresses at registration. Or you can charge for the webinar and grow your list of customers instead.

* Be a sponsor. Sponsor sweepstakes or giveaways on other sites by offering a prize. Have the website link back to your free opt-in offer on their sponsor page.

* Get interviewed. Media is all around us and you don’t have to be on a big TV show to get exposure. Get interviews on targeted podcasts, webinars and have them share your free offer.

Growing your list is all about sharing great content and each day you want to grow your business (that’s every day, right?), should include list building in your schedule. Do this consistently and your list will continue to grow, giving you a steady steam of new potential clients and customers.

Do This Next and Turn Your Writing Skills into a Living…

Writer Help Wanted co-founders, Ron Douglas and Alice Seba, recently got together to discuss the 5 obstacles that keep most writer from earning a good living from their writing. Click here to access this eye-opening recording..


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Connecting With Key Influencers to Grow Your Business

Key InfluencersKey Influencers – Connect With Them to Grow Your Business

Did you know that fewer than five percent of people in any community or organization account for more than ninety-five percent of all positive events, growth, and happenings in that community or organization? These people are known as the “key influencers” and can be valuable to you and/or your business or personal goals.

This morning I met with a group of women from my Zonta Club in Santa Clarita. This is an amazing group of dedicated business women working towards the common goal of advancing the status of women around the world and I am honored to be among them. They are also extremely active in this community. We had a new Zontian with us today and I spent over an hour discussing with her how she could get her new business off the ground.

Anne (not her real name to protect her identity) is a former classroom teacher in the Los Angeles Unified School District, like I was. Even though she has lived in the Santa Clarita Valley for more than thirty years, the time constraints of her career kept her from volunteering or getting to know people very well over this period of time. When she resigned from teaching last year she decided to dedicate her life to empowering women through a variety of techniques she has used personally. I asked her how she was getting the word out about the Retreats and courses she wanted to offer and that’s when our discussion became a serious one.

Anne and I discussed how she could best use her time to network with the people who would not only understand what she wanted to do but would also be able to help her get in front of the exact people she wanted to serve. The goal is to position yourself as an expert, one day at a time. I told her that Zonta was the perfect place to start, but to also expand her reach throughout the community in a logical way. I then invited her to my Rotary Club meeting so that I could introduce her to the other members.

I work with people all over the world who have a message they wish to share with the world, and a huge part of this is connecting with the “key influencers” where you live. I recommend becoming a “local celebrity” so that you can begin at home and then move in concentric circles to the outer edges of the world. This strategy is quite effective and gives you both the credibility and the visibility to build a lucrative business and to make a name for yourself.

As we sat together on this crisp spring morning, Anne and I began to create a plan that would work well for her. Even though she has a standing commitment to a group related to her topic that meets every Wednesday evening through the end of the year, she agreed to consider missing it on the second Wednesday of each month in order to attend the monthly Zonta business meeting. This will keep her connected to these powerful women (AKA “key influencers”) with and from whom she can learn and grow. She also wants to do more public speaking and we brainstormed ideas on how to make this happen, first within the city and later to the world.

I also recommended that she consider joining Rotary, involving her husband by attending Friday night dinners at the Santa Clarita Elk’s Lodge, and looking for volunteer opportunities in our community. Attending one event every month, whether it’s social or for a non-profit puts you in front of people you might otherwise never have met. She now has a calendar that is quickly filling up with opportunities and she sees things quite differently than she did just twenty-four hours ago. Anything is possible when you have a solid plan and a mentor to guide you.

Networking and volunteering are both offline methods for connecting with your community and building a business. Online strategies include blogging, offering webinars and other online trainings, writing a book, and speaking at events around the world. Social media is also crucial to the mix, as it allows for you to connect with these key influencers much more frequently. Please let me know if you have further questions on anything I have discussed here.

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