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  1. #1
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    March 10th, 2015
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    Post Looking for Advice on Getting Affiliate Started
    Hello,

    my company provides a service to restaurants that allows them to get better customer feedback and information through the use of a tablet-based feedback form. We also provide the cloud-based dashboard that helps them analyze the feedback and interact with customers via email. Right now our sales are predominantly us approaching restaurants, but the goal is to create a much stronger online presence that will generate sales and demo requests.

    Our marketing efforts are really just getting started. As a B2B operation in the hospitality industry most of our sales happen through direct sales and outreach, but our goal is to generate more leads online, hopefully through affiliate marketing. As of now, early March 2015, we are still in the research phase. Any advice you can give would be highly appreciated (see link to thread below).

    I want to know if affiliate marketing is right for this and what advice some of you might have for me.

    Some major concerns I have are 1) that bloggers (affiliates) can't test product and give a review, 2) that restauranteurs and owners are not a frequently targeted demographic by many bloggers that I feel I can reach.

    Thank you for your help!
    Last edited by JCrooks - AffiliateWindow; March 10th, 2015 at 02:08 PM. Reason: combined threads

  2. #2
    Affiliate Network Rep JCrooks - AffiliateWindow's Avatar
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    March 7th, 2007
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    Not the normal introductory post, but let's see what we can do.

    I think that your target market is probably too tiny to use affiliate marketing to generate leads. I would instead recommend a solid, targeted social media presence pointing to blog articles containing success stories. B2B is a narrow area in affiliate marketing, and I suspect that based on your target audience the payout would be difficult to warrant significant affiliate attention.
    Jeannine Crooks - Always happy to share what I know! - Voted Best Network Rep 2013 & 2014
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  3. #3
    OPM and Moderator Chuck Hamrick's Avatar
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    April 5th, 2005
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    Are you testing paid search and if so what keywords are you targeting. I think that direct response is your best bet. You should contact national restaurant and hotel associations to see if you can aquire their member lists for contact then employ a call center to contact. Perhaps focus regionally then grow nationally.

    Affiliate marketing is a logical follow-on when you have optimize other online channels. Never start with affiliate marketing until you are selling and know your conversion metrics.

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  5. #4
    Super Dawg Member Phil Kaufman aka AffiliateHound's Avatar
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    A presence at restaurant/food industry trade shows such as the Western Foodservice & Hospitality Expo in Los Angeles would be excellent exposure for your product.
    Since June 10, 2012 a vegan aarf but still writing the Hound Dawg Sports Blog
    "If you don't have time to do it right, when will you have time to do it over?" -John Wooden;
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  7. #5
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    March 10th, 2015
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    Thank you for all the advice! Highly appreciated.

    Trade shows are far out of my budget for the hospitality industry. The target is very tiny, that's why PPC is also not an option because of all the junk we'd get. We are going to experiment with PPView display ads for retargeting, but I was hoping for affiliate to develop qualified leads that can be retargeted.

    Other marketing initiatives now are guest blogging and forum participation.

  8. #6
    OPM and Moderator Chuck Hamrick's Avatar
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    You need to develop your business model site locally and optimize conversion. Sounds like you need boots on the ground first to create a customer base before you take it to the Internet. If you can't advertise via PPC because your niche is too obscure then how would affiliates understand what you are offering.

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