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  1. #1
    Newbie
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    Question for veteran and newbie affiliates
    We all know new affiliates are coming online everyday. We also know the difficulties encountered by newbies when first starting out. So, here’s the question.

    If you could design software to help any or all of new or established affiliates and/or vendors what, would it be? What would you want the software to accomplish, and what would be the benefits for each of the above participants. I’m really interested in hearing from people who have given some thought about how new and innovative software will, or could solve a current problem for affiliates and vendors. If you would briefly describe your ideas it would be great. “What the mind can conceive, the mind can achieve.”

    Thanks for your participation.

  2. #2
    ABW Ambassador writerguy's Avatar
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    I am very curious -- are you an "established" affiliate? Are you a "vendor" (in these parts, we generally call 'em "merchants" rather than vendors)?

    I ask because if you've done any serious affiliate marketing for very long, or if you are a serious/legitimate merchant, you gotta know there is no way, really, to answer your question.

    Having said all that, I can only think of one piece of software that would fill the bill -- a magic wand. Affiliates would use their magic wands to tap the lid of their laptops and immediately create compelling content for exactly the right products to draw buying traffic to their websites. Merchants (vendors?) would use their magic wands to tap the lid on their laptops and immediately have exactly what online shoppers were eager to buy, at exactly the right prices -- and those products would magically go to all their affiliates, along with great, unique, fresh content for each affiliate's website.

    Sorry. I really don't mean to sound sarcastic here, but I cannot see a way that your question (questions) have any "software" answers.

    Okay, maybe. My "short answer" for such ideal software would be this: PopShops, GoldenCan, perhaps WebMerge.
    Generate more fake news.

  3. #3
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    I also wonder who you are, and what your experience is in affiliate marketing. I'm skeptical enough to assume that you have an "agenda" already, and perhaps you even already have a solution that you're going to reply with (only to have your spammy reply eviscerated by the moderators).

    If you're more specific about what you might bring to the table, and what you're actually asking about, I think it would help people decide whether to respond.

    I use the term "merchant" to refer to the e-commerce retailer, and the term "publisher" to refer to the company (or individual) with a web site which carries merchants' advertising. (The word "affiliate" is confusing and misleading, but unfortunately the terms "affiliate program" and "affiliate marketing" have acquired their own industry meaning, and thus the word "affiliate" has stuck, even though it's inaccurate.) There is a third category in this industry: "solution providers," including affiliate networks, software developers, outsourced program managers, and other intermediaries who find ways to help publishers and merchants work better together.

    I've been trying for several years (without success) to find or build a fairly complex system that would integrate several major functions:
    - managing, importing, and updating affiliate-program links (including datafeeds);
    - managing publishers' editorial changes to the merchant's links;
    - managing publishers' own editorial content and automating the integration of merchant links into that content;
    - managing the display of the integrated content on the publisher's web site (either by dynamically serving content, or by generating static pages), across multiple domains.
    - managing the publisher's own advertising (for example, via Google AdWords) promoting the publisher's web sites.

    Over the past couple of years, I've posted in some detail about this concept (search for "datafeed project"), including a somewhat detailed project specification which I used in soliciting bids from developers. Of course, there are many thousands of discussion threads about services, functions, and capabilities that affiliates would like to have.

    Some folks have created products and services that address some of my requirements, but unfortunately each of these has limitations that prevent them from meeting my needs, even for a single component of my project. (I'm thinking of services like GoldenCAN and PopShops, and software like WebMerge, Datafeed Studio, and the Cusimano scripts.) There have also been a string of other individuals and companies that have promised solutions, often with disastrous results.

    If your goal is to develop a tool that you can offer for the use of serious web publishers, and if you can devise a business model that will allow you to profit while your customers also profit, then I'd be glad to spend some time talking with you, and probably other ABW members would also be glad to participate in discussions.

    BUT if your goal is to develop a tool that you can sell as part of a package that you'll use to entice opportunity-seekers to try to earn a living from "affiliate marketing," and your goal is to make money by selling it to people who have no reasonable chance of earning a profit, then folks here won't want to talk with you, and you're going to be competing with hundreds of hucksters, con artists, and self-proclaimed "gurus" who are selling snake oil.

    The absolute key factor in all of this, is that the publisher must add value, usually by creating original editorial content. No solution will work if it merely automates the generation of cookie-cutter web sites that contain identical content, no matter how many ways the content is sliced and diced. My problem has been that over time, as I develop content-rich web sites, I end up spending more and more time managing and updating merchant links, and less time creating original content.
    Last edited by markwelch; July 6th, 2009 at 06:48 PM.

  4. #4
    http and a telephoto
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    There isn't one software to do it all. Every website is different, every affiliate is different, every merchant is different. Cookie cutters don't work in the affiliate world.
    Deborah Carney
    TeamLoxly.com BookGoodies.com ABCsPlus.com

  5. #5
    Half a Bubble Off Plumb RemodelingGuy's Avatar
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    I can't find it in my heart to give you the long and brainy response that Mark & WG have given you.....

    Technology has been there and done that.

    As a newbie, try to work with programs that work in your niche...

    Then try again, and again and again if you need to...

    werd!

    Jimmy McDonald - Your Local Hard Working RemodelingGuy ( & SprinklerGuy - & GarageGuy )
    StartRemodeling.com .... MySprinklerGuy.com .... MyGarageGuy.com ....
    We're Bettering YOUR Life by Improving Where YOU Live It ...
    Do What You LOVE & LOVE What You Do! ....

  6. #6
    ABW Veteran Mr. Sal's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bray0620
    We all know new affiliates are coming online everyday. We also know the difficulties encountered by newbies when first starting out. So, here’s the question.

    If you could design software to help any or all of new or established affiliates and/or vendors what, would it be? What would you want the software to accomplish, and what would be the benefits for each of the above participants. I’m really interested in hearing from people who have given some thought about how new and innovative software will, or could solve a current problem for affiliates and vendors. If you would briefly describe your ideas it would be great. “What the mind can conceive, the mind can achieve.”

    Thanks for your participation.
    Ok, since you want to know... Let's see if you can achieve some of these mind thoughts...

    How about an anti-spam software that, once you get spammed you can somehow reply to that spam and format the spammer HD.

    How about an anti-parasite software that, once a parasite overwrite your cookie, you can overwrite that parasite aff-code back to yours...

    How about an ebook on how to use some software that, will make anyone rich in just a few months...


  7. #7
    Half a Bubble Off Plumb RemodelingGuy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr. Sal
    Ok, since you want to know... Let's see if you can achieve some of these mind thoughts...

    How about an anti-spam software that, once you get spammed you can somehow reply to that spam and format the spammer HD.
    Auto-Reply and BLOW UP the Senders Hardware.

    That would ROCK!


    Jimmy McDonald - Your Local Hard Working RemodelingGuy ( & SprinklerGuy - & GarageGuy )
    StartRemodeling.com .... MySprinklerGuy.com .... MyGarageGuy.com ....
    We're Bettering YOUR Life by Improving Where YOU Live It ...
    Do What You LOVE & LOVE What You Do! ....

  8. #8
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    My Utmost Apology
    I had intended to post to a professional affiliate web forum. I mistakenly posted here instead. (Oh!, sorry. Was that sarcastic?)

    Here’s another chuckle for you. A couple of intelligent newbies actually read the question and came up with the answers below. However, don’t worry about it, I have already given your answers all the attention they deserve.


    Software that I most want is one that will track affiliate programs, ie:

    Program Name
    Network(s)
    Commission Rate
    Merchant Category/Categories
    Merchant target area, ie:
    Campaigns for that merchant and my websites where I have used them.
    Stats

    Basically take the backend of each network and use it in-house.

    There has been recent discussion about the difficulty in applying merchant datafeeds to affiliate sites. Datafeed management software that would analyze and tailor any datafeed format to simplify the task would be useful to affiliates.

    Very good question!
    I'm a newbie and been in the affiliate marketing industry since an year. I have developed a few quality sites but the toughest part for me is handling datafeeds. There are services like datafeedfile, popshops, etc but I like to use my branded links, not 3rd party links. So, software that I would love get developed:

    Datafeed management software.

    This software should read datafeeds from different networks SAS, CJ, GAN, etc. and organize products as per defined categories, etc. Ofcourse, it won't be easy to design something like this but if it can be designed that way, I wouldn't mind paying for it. Once again, this software should use my own branded links, not a 3rd party branded links.

  9. #9
    Half a Bubble Off Plumb RemodelingGuy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bray0620
    I had intended to post to a professional affiliate web forum. I mistakenly posted here instead. (Oh!, sorry. Was that sarcastic?)
    See Ya!

    No one is going to feel sorry that you didn't get the massage, yes massage, that you felt you were entitled to.

    Stay!

    Go!

    I'll make it just fine, as will everyone else here.

    Enjoy!

    Jimmy McDonald - Your Local Hard Working RemodelingGuy ( & SprinklerGuy - & GarageGuy )
    StartRemodeling.com .... MySprinklerGuy.com .... MyGarageGuy.com ....
    We're Bettering YOUR Life by Improving Where YOU Live It ...
    Do What You LOVE & LOVE What You Do! ....

  10. #10
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    I guess I should have checked Google before writing a reply to this bozo. He's been posting the identical "question" on several affiliate forums; I also see some history which, if I'd seen it sooner, would have led me to ignore the post. (A year ago, he was seeking bids from freelancers to create a "sales letter landing page" promoting his home-improvement ebook. I think I know where all of this was headed.)

    I'm very glad that we weren't professional enough to satisfy Bray's needs.

  11. #11
    ABW Ambassador
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    Thread Closed
    Google is our friend.

  12. #12
    Moderator MichaelColey's Avatar
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    We may not always be professional, but we're experienced enough to sniff out the spam.
    Michael Coley
    Amazing-Bargains.com
     Affiliate Tips | Merchant Best Practices | Affiliate Friendly? | Couponing | CPA Networks? | ABW Tips | Activating Affiliates
    "Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world." Nelson Mandela

  13. #13
    http and a telephoto
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    The funny thing is that no one *was* rude to him until after he blasted that this wasn't a professional forum.

    Oh well, another spammer gone.
    Deborah Carney
    TeamLoxly.com BookGoodies.com ABCsPlus.com

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