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  1. #1
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    Reasons why an ABW member does not show up at the Summit
    Well this is more of a puzzle to me. ABW has 63000+ registered members and there are perhaps many more who read it without registering. And at ABW party we met about 100 people which is great. I was surprised at the party even some moderators like Trust does not show up at any conferences and remain as a mysterious person (if you will).

    Ok, my question to all those who did not come to the Summit. What were your reasons -

    a) Expensive
    b) It's not worth it
    c) You want to be mysterious like Trust
    d) International with Visa Issues
    e) You're not a full time affiliate or merchant or AM etc.
    f) You attend ASE and not ABW vice versa
    g) Other reasons

    I thought AS was a great summit and just wondering why 62,900+ people do not show up!

  2. #2
    ABW Ambassador Daniel M. Clark's Avatar
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    While your question is a good one, it's important to remember that ABW doesn't have anywhere near 63,000 active members. I won't guess at the actual number of active users, but it's significantly less than that.

    Also, it wouldn't surprise me if quite a lot of people at Summit were registered members here but simply didn't make it to the reception for one reason or another.
    Daniel M. Clark
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  3. #3
    ABW Ambassador affninja's Avatar
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    For me I didn't think the travel and conference fee was worth it this year. I only work in a couple narrow niches and recently met with most of my advertisers either at CJU or during some other trips. Sorry to have missed it though, it sounded like a great conference!
    Your Ad Here.

  4. #4
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    While I am a full time affiliate, I'm self-employed.. and live in Canada. The conference would cost north of $1,000. It's not TOO expensive, but I don't spent that lightly right now.

    Not attending Affiliate Summit isn't a reflection on the event.. but for me, a conference is completely separate from participation in this forum.

    I'm here at ABW to stay on top of industry issues, dialogue with people who "get it", and give back advice I've received since joining.

    No question I would find Affiliate Summit beneficial, but it doesn't feel like the right time yet.

  5. #5
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    TeeZone said it well.

    I am not a fulltime affiliate, but I plan to be soon. This was my first Summit and it was well worth the money and time. I learned a lot and met folks that I have known for awhile online. Meeting face to face just reinforces the relationships.

    In the past, I could not justify a Summit because of the cost and my lack of knowledge(in my mind). If I had attended a Summit without being at my present knowledge level, I would have been so confused and overwhelmed that I may have quit entirely. Timeing is everything. I am now motivated to get to the next level.

    I needed to be comfortable in my mind before attending. This Summit was great for me....doesn't mean that I will attend the next one.....but this will not be my last one.

    BTW.....ABW and the people here have been my teachers and provided inspiration and motivation.
    You must climb this mountain. There is no elevator. ---- Don't stick your finger in the liquid nitrogen.
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  6. #6
    ABW Ambassador ladidah's Avatar
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    I am also full-time affiliate marketer but also full-time mom.

    Simply didn't attend (yet) because I have been only doing this full-time for 1.5 year.
    Yes, expense is also an issue but I can see that it would be totally worth it to attend in the future.

    Timing was also not right since we just got back beginning of Jan from our vacation from the Caribbean and were pulling our hairs out with getting my son's high school application in before the Jan 15th deadline.

    The ABW party I believe was also limited to Inner Circle members so not every ABW member may have known about it. Sometimes people register as a ABW member here but never became active on this forum but find other forums to participate in e.g. CPA focused forums, clickbank etc.

    Regarding Trust, how do you know he wasn't there? He may have been incognito and standing right next to you and you didn't know it

    What are the most important benefits, if any, you have gotten out of the summit (besides parties, friendship, fun) that helped your business that you would not have gotten otherwise?

  7. #7
    Comfortably Numb John Powell's Avatar
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    a) Expensive
    For me it is even though I got an offer of a free room to share. I would like to go to the New York one. I've never been there and have been to Vegas. Really would like to see some faces, but keeping a tight rein on my resources keeps me free.


  8. #8
    ABW Ambassador Rehan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ladidah
    What are the most important benefits, if any, you have gotten out of the summit (besides parties, friendship, fun) that helped your business that you would not have gotten otherwise?
    Excellent question, ladidah.

    For merchants, OPMs and networks the benefits are quite clear -- their goal is to attract as many people as possible to their business, so attending large conferences can be very worthwhile.

    As an affiliate, the face-to-face social aspect can be very important. Many of us just work from home by ourselves and don't often get together with others with the same mindset. It's just not the same if you're doing it through forums / Twitter / blogs / etc.. And having those friendships with people in the industry can help your business once in a while -- especially if you're 1) still a newbie, or 2) nurturing your relationships with merchants and trying to stand out from the rest.

    In terms of the session content, IMO there isn't much that you can't find elsewhere. Some people get value out of the sessions, but many don't.

    Personally, I don't buy into the bigger-is-better philosophy. I'd rather get together with 150 people that better match my activities than with 4000+ attendees, most of whom do stuff that gives the affiliate industry a bad reputation. There are several affiliate conference options out there, so choose the one(s) that suit you best.

    Anyway, there are lots of free tickets given out for each Affiliate Summit, which makes it one of the more affordable conferences to attend. You should hop down to ASE10 this summer and make it a family vacation.
    --

  9. #9
    ABW Ambassador bettylou's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ladidah
    I am also full-time affiliate marketer but also full-time mom.
    Same here. And full-time mom comes first.

  10. #10
    ABW Ambassador Rehan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by teezone
    While I am a full time affiliate, I'm self-employed.. and live in Canada. The conference would cost north of $1,000. It's not TOO expensive, but I don't spent that lightly right now.
    I'm also in Canada and I've attended the last 3 ASE's with Platinum Passes... Only one of them cost me more than $1k. It depends on where in Canada you are, though.
    --

  11. #11
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    Being a part time affiliate + a full time job doesn't leave me any time to go to conferences.

  12. #12
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    The total cost of attending would be $1,000 (including transportation & hotel), but as I said earlier, I don't consider that too expensive conceptually.

    Right now my time & resources are spent on site expansion & enhancements. The decision to not attend is a matter of priority, not cost. I'm not a newbie, my merchants know who I am.. I just made a choice to direct funds elsewhere.

    This is no reflection on AS as an event...
    What are the most important benefits, if any, you have gotten out of the summit (besides parties, friendship, fun) that helped your business that you would not have gotten otherwise?
    That's a great question..

  13. #13
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    For me, attending conferences is a pretty low priority for my time. Traveling out-of-state involves a "time cost" of several full days, which represents a substantial number of hours of "work" I might otherwise accomplish.

    The financial cost is also a factor, not just for the conference registration but also for airfare, local transportation, hotel, and meals.

    The "benefits" of attending an affiliate conference are somewhat intangible. In my role as a web publisher, attending an affiliate conference is a very, very low priority; in my other role as a marketing consultant, the potential benefits (including "networking" to drive referrals) are greater, but still are usually not justified by the cost (both money and time).

    Things have definitely changed since 9/11 and the subsequent cycles of airport security-tightening. In the 1990s, I would frequently take "day trips" (from my home in the San Francisco Bay Area) to Los Angeles, where I could wake up in my own bed at 6am and be at a client site in LA by 9am (delays might push that to 10am). Now, I must budget 5 hours minimum for that same one-way trip -- the last time I went to LA, I actually drove (with my leisurely driving pace and frequent stops, it takes about 8 hours).

  14. #14
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    This podcast was buried in a "catchup" post I did in the Affiliate ABCs forum, but since it is very relevant to the questions being asked here I split it out to it's own thread:

    http://forum.abestweb.com/showthread.php?t=128691

    The people met here at ABW, met in person at Affiliate Summit and other events and now all of them are making money because of the networking they did. There is also an article at ReveNews about it, written by Billy Kay.
    Last edited by loxly; January 23rd, 2010 at 04:46 PM. Reason: pasted wrong link
    Deborah Carney
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  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by ladidah
    What are the most important benefits, if any, you have gotten out of the summit (besides parties, friendship, fun) that helped your business that you would not have gotten otherwise?
    Connections, networking, bumping into people accidentally that you would never have met online, talking to someone new to the industry that becomes someone you are then able to work with. The parties are secondary to the real business being done. I totally understand that due to family issues or financial ones you may not be able to attend many conferences, but seriously, my personal businesses (back as an affiliate, then as a new AM and now as an OPM) have grown exponentially after each Affiliate Summit I attended.

    You meet the people behind the facade, you meet the people that once you look them in the eye you know if you want to work with them or not, you show your commitment to your business, you walk away meeting people you didn't know at all and bring them into your online world where they meet more people and the whole circle widens.

    Attending just one affiliate summit (or other convention if there is a meetup or group near you) can result in you the affiliate being able to grow your business tenfold.

    I'll actually be doing a case study with a couple of the bloggers from the MommyBlogging panel I moderated. They had never been to an affiliate event before. Within the very first day they spoke to people that will help their business. They also learned who *not* to work with. I'll be following them along the next few months and we'll see how attending Affiliate Summit helped (or not).

    Even though it has grown to a little over 4000 people, you still can focus in on certain people that you want to associate with. Not all 4000 go to the same sessions, the same parties or are in the show hall at the same time.

    Because of my issues with my back, I didn't see everyone I wanted to see, but I still made a lot of new contacts, had face to face meetings with people and was able to get a lot of work done in a short amount of time. It would take weeks to talk to all these people on the phone, when running into them in the halls and speaking to them for 5 mins was enough to avoid a series of emails and missed calls.

    Ask Vinny about his chance encounter that turned into a new friend and potential business relationship

    You don't get those opportunities if you limit yourself to being online only.

    If you can't come for the whole conference, come for a day. Sunday has become a very valuable day.
    Deborah Carney
    TeamLoxly.com BookGoodies.com ABCsPlus.com

  16. #16
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    Great responses. Keep them coming. I understand that many ABW members are inactive and they may find it not worth it and expensive to make it. Based on the responses so far, it is clear that there are varied reasons for not attending. And obviously tons of reasons to attend and benefit.

    What are the most important benefits, if any, you have gotten out of the summit (besides parties, friendship, fun) that helped your business that you would not have gotten otherwise?
    Besides tons of parties, friendship and fun, I have worked out several deals, paid placements etc. that easily justified costs. Also for me I got to do the affiliate showcase which meant a lot for me!.

    I did not see Loxly's response above to the above QUOTE. I agree with her 500%

  17. #17
    ABW Ambassador Daniel M. Clark's Avatar
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    I went to both Summits in 2008. I missed both in 2009. I'm 1 for 2 in 2010 so far. Yes, they can be pricey, but I wouldn't miss them again at this point without a very good reason. In 2009, I missed Vegas because my son was only a month old and I didn't want to leave my wife alone with the (then) three-year-old and the newborn while I hit Sin City for 4-5 days. No complaints there - but I missed New York because I felt I couldn't afford it. Sales were down, and money was tight. I think that was a mistake. I honestly feel that my affiliate projects would be further along at this point had I gone.

    Everyone gets something different out of Summit, and I'm not trying to convince everyone that they need to go because as people here have shown, it's not for everyone. I can say that for me, it's an invaluable part of my online efforts.
    Daniel M. Clark
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    Greg Hoffman Consulting

  18. #18
    Beachy Bill's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by redtagdeals
    Great responses. Keep them coming. I understand that many ABW members are inactive and they may find it not worth it and expensive to make it. Based on the responses so far, it is clear that there are varied reasons for not attending. And obviously tons of reasons to attend and benefit.

    Besides tons of parties, friendship and fun, I have worked out several deals, paid placements etc. that easily justified costs. Also for me I got to do the affiliate showcase which meant a lot for me!.

    I did not see Loxly's response above to the above QUOTE. I agree with her 500%
    Not to mention, that for me and several other people, many of those deals and affiliate/merchant connections did not happen on the convention floor. Many, many business "arrangements" happen at parties, dinners, and other fun happenings.

    I have been in this business since May of 1999. My first Affiliate Summit was in July of 2007 and I have only missed one since. I can also credit my experiences at Summit for directly helping me increase the value of our online presence and growth of our business. This was the first Affiliate Summit we attended as a "merchant" and it was every bit as valuable as when we were solely on the affiliate side of affiliate marketing.
    Bill / Marketing Blog @ 12PM - Current project: Resurrecting my "baby" at South Baltimore..
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  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by redtagdeals
    c) You want to be mysterious like Trust
    Final answer. And this time, have more important things to deal with.

  20. #20
    ABW Veteran jc101's Avatar
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    my thoughts
    well someone who has been in this industry since early 1994 and pretty much one of the very few to get in this industry first, I Just don't see value of paying $1000 upfront when i am or friends who are in this business also is not 100% confident to get that money back within the next year from there business's especially if they are new.

    especially for those new affiliates who are just getting started in the business in my opinion it's just like Amway or another business that just tries to get people to spend money, if Merchants or people in this industry really wanted to get more people involved they would either make the summit free to new affiliates or provide a limited amount of free tickets for new affiliates so they can see it's actually worth it as well as legitimate to be in this industry.

    Another main reason i don't participate in affiliate summit is whats the point of sharing ideas or whatever when this industry is based on competition, I'm not going to be giving my business model to another person just so they can copy it and say it's there's.

    I'v been in this industry so long that I place my friends and follow to be affiliates and business owners first, I would rather be helping them make there first $25,000 before they even think about spending $1,000.

    simply put this industry needs to be more justified, know wonder people are so suspicious when it comes down to starting a internet business. I know people will be pissed on what I saw but Affiliate Summit and other events like this needs to offer a low cost way for new affiliates to join this summit without them going more into debt.

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by Trust
    Final answer. And this time, have more important things to deal with.
    I understand being busy with important things part. I was looking to meet and greet you at ABW reception and asked around a couple of HIGHLY placed ABWers. The answer I got was that you remain private, invisible to nobody!. I don't know if you attended any conferences ever, but it does not matter to the conversation/question here. I just wanted to throw one of the options there being highly placed ABWer (moderator too) remaining private and choosing not to attend AS. That's all there to it. I don't care whether you attend or not or whatever you choose to do with conferences.

  22. #22
    ABW Ambassador Rehan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jc101
    if Merchants or people in this industry really wanted to get more people involved they would either make the summit free to new affiliates or provide a limited amount of free tickets for new affiliates so they can see it's actually worth it as well as legitimate to be in this industry.
    As I alluded to earlier, it's quite easy to get a free ticket for Affiliate Summit. And if you're frugal, you can drive there and stay at a cheap hotel (and/or split the hotel costs with someone else). The expense is a moot point.

    Another main reason i don't participate in affiliate summit is whats the point of sharing ideas or whatever when this industry is based on competition, I'm not going to be giving my business model to another person just so they can copy it and say it's there's.
    If you don't want to give ideas, that's your prerogative. But there are lots of people that believe there is plenty of room to share ideas and help others grow. Newbie affiliates and newbie merchants can still learn quite a bit from other merchants, other affiliates, OPMs, networks, etc..
    --

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by jc101
    Another main reason i don't participate in affiliate summit is whats the point of sharing ideas or whatever when this industry is based on competition, I'm not going to be giving my business model to another person just so they can copy it and say it's there's.
    JC101 - I respect all your comments but I have to disagree with pretty much everything you said.

    Some of my best friends at the summit are our competitors. Of course, there are some competitors who choose to keep at bay and does not interact. IMO, these folks are the stupidest/dumbest out there!.

    Even if you choose not to reveal / discuss / enhance your ideas, just doing some sessions and interacting with merchants will help. It is up to everyone to see how much that is worth to you. Remember, nobody is forcing there to reveal your TOP COOKING ideas.

  24. #24
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    Rehan, well said in your response to JC101

  25. #25
    ABW Ambassador Rehan's Avatar
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    One other point I'll add, although it's probably obvious to most, is that none of this networking or learning stuff is *guaranteed* to make you successful. I can think of a couple of ABW members that I've met at ASE's that are still just fumbling along or have given up. And I'm sure there are many others in the same boat. Networking can help, but it's not a guarantee for anything.
    --

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