To those on the outside, affiliate marketing can seem like a black box. It’s inner workings are mysterious to most marketers and in many companies it’s not treated with the same seriousness as other channels. Some marketers, only familiar with the bad reputation acquired by some industry players in the 2000s, deride it as a source of spam and little more.
The concept of affiliate marketing on the Internet was conceived of, put into practice and patented by William J. Tobin, the founder of PC Flowers & Gifts. Launched on the Prodigy Network in 1989, PC Flowers & Gifts remained on the service until 1996. By 1993, PC Flowers & Gifts generated sales in excess of $6 million per year on the Prodigy service. In 1998, PC Flowers and Gifts developed the business model of paying a commission on sales to the Prodigy Network.
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Your first step is actually to go to your own site to get an idea of what types of people tend to visit your site and read your content. For example at Quick Sprout, we obviously have a lot of entrepreneurs, a lot of small business owners, a lot of bloggers, a lot of social media professionals that tend to visit Quick Sprout most often. It’s just a good idea to go to your site and just think of the type of people that visit it, because that’s going to guide you when choosing your Clickbank products. Once you’ve done that, your next step is to create a simple but effective spreadsheet just to keep track of all the products that you’ll be looking at.
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