Collect Visitors Info First Before Sending Them To Affiliate

Honestly, I'm not a big affiliate fan because in the past I haven't gotten 90% of the money promised either because they disappear before they pay out or they have so many exceptions -- paying out once a quarter, has to be over X dollars first, etc. Another negative side is that some of them think that 10% commission or some low amount is worth the 20 hours it takes for us to sell it. Usually the 10% equal $10 and $10 isn't worth my reputation even $1000 actually.

Today's article is not about the pros and cons of being an affiliate member. There are some good affiliate programs out there where you will get a check, their exceptions are small or nil, and the commission reasonable for the amount of time, risk, and reputation you place on the line for their product or program.

This article focuses on collecting their information before you give them the affiliate link so you can increase your mailing list numbers or residual income.

Almost all affiliate referrals are handled by providing someone with the affiliate link. The reader then goes from your place to their place. If this is what you have been doing, take the "L" (for loser) off your forehead, and read this to "get SMART quick."

Stop LOOSING a valuable marketing opportunity -- and stop it now!

Instead, set up a bridge page (also called a portal page or doorway page). Use the terms bridge and portal instead since the word doorway has a separate search engine meaning that can be confusing.

A bridge page works simply like this. You set up a bridge page on your web site. You send them to this page instead of to the affiliate site, collect their information, and THEN send them to the affiliate site.

The objective is to offer them something for fr*e*e that they must register for on that bridge page so you collect their information. In fact, you can offer several things.

You set up two pages actually. One that is the bridge page and the other a thank you page. After you collect their information THEN you send them to the thank you page. On the thank you page, you thank them for whatever it is they did and then give them an option to NOW access the affiliate site.

Here are a few ideas on items you can offer on the bridge page to collect their information:

* To subscribe to your ezine. If you have more than one, list these all. * To register for an ecourse. * To receive an ebook. * Offer your opinion or testimonials on using the affiliate's product/program.

Now, one of the main things most people do not think about is offering them something to purchase. And this is something affiliate offerers lookout for when you sign up to be an affiliate (at least the good ones do). They don't want their competition becoming an affiliate and then snatching the customer on the way to their site. I am chuckling on this one -- I think it is great actually. Most affiliates don't even know this is happening to them.

Here is a duzie of a hint that I've only seen one affiliate program do. This will give you a head start and it's kind of sneaky too.

You can offer something at a price on the bridge page that has to do with that topic (you have a focused buyer here). Example: The affiliate item is a software product. You can write an ebook on the same topic. Yes, will this piss off some affiliates. You bet, but guess what -- that's business. And also guess what -- it's going to take them a while to figure it out what you are doing too. They are so busy trying to obtain more affiliates they don't have the time to research each one.

Offering something for a price isn't as effective as something for fr*e*e. Then again, you have to decide what is your call to action for the bridge page. Is it to collect name and increase your mailing list or to make residual income. Don't get greedy and offer both. It will bite you in the "assets". Too many choices and it confuses the visitor and so they don't make any decision at all and leave without choosing anything -- no freebie, no affiliate link.

When you set up your doorway page, set up the metatags and searchable keywords that you wouldn't otherwise be able to place on your site. Make sure that these same words are in the content.

Catherine Franz, a Certified Professional Marketing & Writing Coach, specializes in product development, Internet writing and marketing, nonfiction, training. Newsletters and articles available at: http://www.abundancecenter.com blog: http://abundance.blogs.com

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In The News:

Assembly Reaches $1 Billion Valuation  Los Angeles Business Journal
Form 424B2 CITIGROUP INC  StreetInsider.com

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