Heard of Google Remarketing Yet?

I was just made aware of Google’s new ‘remarketing’ advertising this morning. Not quite sure what to think yet. This seems to be great news for those businesses or individuals advertising online, but not so sure from a consumer stand point.

Here’s a quick explanation of how it works from both points of view. From a consumer’s point of view, say you visit a web page about a particular product. You do nothing more than browse that web page and then move on to another web page outside of that site. If the next site you go to is running Google Ads on their site, there is the potential that you will see an ad for the product you were just viewing. From the advertiser’s side, if you have a Google AdWords account, you will set up a ‘remarketing campaign’ within your AdWords account, add some code to the page where you are selling your product, then when the visitor leaves your site, Google can now show that visitor ads related to the product that visitor saw on your site when they visit other sites showing ads from the Google Content Network.

Want to read more about Google remarketing? Check out Google’s post here.

Benefits of Using Confirmation Pages Effectively

Are you leaving something on the table after someone purchases your product, signs up for your newsletter or uses your contact form? I think we all have done one of those things online before and after doing so are usually taken to a simple page saying something confirming what we just did. If you have a website and use confirmation pages, have you ever thought of putting something on there to either upsale something or to gather additional information? This would be a great place to put an affiliate offer or related products. I use this technique now a lot when creating landing pages where visitors enter in their information. On one particular confirmation page, I show other related websites the visitor can then visit (that I market for as well) and when looking at the analytics for those sites, I have found that that confirmation page is one of the top referrers to these sites!

I would love to hear what you think of this technique, if you have tried it, what kind of results you have seen, etc. Feel free to comment below.

A True Startup & Affiliate Marketing Success Story – Mint.com

Watch the video below to see how Aaron Patzer, the CEO of Mint, took an idea he had, built and funded a profitable business around it, and then sold it for $170M in just over three years! This guy took affiliate marketing to the next level. Mint.com is a free online personal finance management service (which I have been using for over a year). One of the first questions I had when I signed up was “how can this be free?” as it was the best personal finance solution I had come across yet. Then I noticed how affiliate offers were cleverly integrated throughout the site. Being an affiliate myself, I could see right away how this company was making money. However, the way they were doing it was genius. There was really no sales involved. Because Mint imports a user’s banking information, Mint is able to know what rates and services their users are getting and then suggest other services that would save them money. If a user happens to sign up for one of these offers, then Mint gets the affiliate commission. So it is a “win win” for both Mint and the customer. The thing I admire most about Aaron was that he not only had the idea, but really took action to see that it turned into a reality. When I first logged into Mint and saw what he was doing, I kicked myself for not thinking of something like this, but to be honest, even if I had the idea I am not sure that I would have followed it through like Aaron. Check out his story below.

Mint CEO Aaron Patzer on Startups from Techcrunch on Vimeo.

Using Affiliate Marketing as Part of Your Online Marketing Strategy

Do you own a website and are looking for ways to drive traffic to you site and increase sales? If so, joining an affiliate network as an advertiser may be a good option for you. As you have probably found, most articles out there about affiliate marketing are for publishers, or those promoting other sites for some kind of compensation. This article though is geared towards those website owners looking to use these “affiliates” to promote their product or service.

When it comes down to it, there are four main ways to drive traffic to your website: search engine optimization, pay-per-click, joining an affiliate network and social media. Each of these methods have their own pros and cons, but I will focus on the main benefit and cost of what joining an affiliate network can do for your business. First things first though, let me list for you some of the affiliate networks out there that you could join:

The downside to signing up with an affiliate network is the ongoing cost and performance standards required. If your plan is for visitors to your site to make a purchase and your site converts well, then you may not have a lot to worry about. However, this can get very expensive very fast and eventually get you kicked off the network if you are not converting traffic to sales.

The upside to joining an affiliate network is that you have the possibility of having an army of marketers across the web market your product or service. Remember that your commission structure must be attractive to these marketers for them to show interest. Even though there are a lot of affiliates out there, it seems that only a few really know how to market well on the web. You either need to search them out and make them an offer or look for affiliate sites within your niche where you could promote your product.

The most successful sites that use affiliate marketing as a strategy have at the very least an affiliate manager hired from within. These managers may perform such tasks as communicating with affiliates, approve/deny affiliate applications, create creative ad content and copy for affiliates to use, create landing pages, perform split testing to see what pages are converting best, create email drip campaigns, manage email lists, etc. So obviously you either need a very talented affiliate manager or a team that may consist of a marketing manager, web developer, graphic designer, writer and analyst.

If you are looking to use affiliate marketing as part of your online marketing strategy, I hope this has answered some questions for you. Still have questions or would like to talk more about this? You can contact me here or leave a comment below.