Lessons From the Niche Affiliate Marketing System (#NAMS)

Ever get in way over your head? Did you come out unscathed? That’s what a lot of people at the Niche Affiliate Marketing System are feeling this weekend.

Hold that thought. . .

Saturday morning Mark Hendricks spoke to the group as a whole. What was probably a bit strange to the attendees is he didn’t talk about internet marketing, he spoke about life. But it slowly became clear that a career in internet marketing is about the juggling of time, family, use of money, use of time and tasks. Without looking at all these things as a whole, how you create a lifestyle that includes a healthy balance of life – not just work.

Mark Hendricks at Niche Affiliate Marketing Sy...

Image by rogercarr via Flickr

One of the illustrations Mark used was the working of a maze. To get your crayon from the Start to the Finish, isn’t if faster if you start from the finish and work backwards? The point he makes is – doesn’t it make sense to create a goal and work backward from the goal to now see how to accomplish it?

For instance if you want to make $48,000/year, don’t you first need to be able to make 4,000 in a month? Doesn’t it make sense then to figure out how to make $1,000/week? And then doesn’t it make sense that you’d have to learn how to make $150/day? (Yes, I know that’s not perfect math, Bob The Teacher) :)

When you work backwards and try to figure out how to make $150/day – you’ll know you’re beginning to achieve your goal.

Back to feeling overwhelmed. . .

So what I know,  as a 3 time NAMS attendee, that the “newbies” might be feeling overwhelmed right now, but once they establish their overall goals – all the tools they learned here will be right in their lap. And they’ll know exactly how to use them.

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NAMS is finally upon us!

Ever been to an internet marketing conference? Let me guess. . . Session 1. . . chat in the hall with someone you sat near. . . Session 2. . . rinse, repeat.

Most of them are like that. You go in knowing that the speaker’s have a goal in mind. Sure, they’re going to provide you some information that will be useful – but ultimately they’re going to be selling themselves or their product.

Now imagine this. . . you sign up for an internet marketing conference. . . but before you go you meet 90% of the people in an active forum, exchange ideas and even set up dinners to talk about subjects like copywriting and joint ventures.

Imagine creating mastermind groups and find business partners before you even get there. That’s what NAMS has turned into. The Niche Affiliate Marketing System Workshop, put on by David Perdew has become an incubator for success.

So can you still expect the instructors to spend their time selling? You can expect it – but most of the time you have to ask them if they have a product based on the lesson. This is a group centered on educating its peers. This is a group of friends – hell bent on being just that.

And in this crazy world – what better way to spend a weekend than with friends!

Interested in when the next NAMS event will take place? Try Clicking this!

The Tools You Need To Create An Affiliate Site

Well I’ve worked on turning one of my websites into an affiliate site this week, and let me tell you there is definitely a learning curve.

In fact, as of this moment, the site isn’t even live yet. First I had to identify some software that would handle the tracking of affiliate sales. In the end, I asked some folks I knew and got pointed in the right direction.

Then I decided to create a new sales page, but I couldn’t finish that until I’d completed setting up and installing the affiliate software. Why is that you ask? Well, the sales page has a “buy now” type button on it. When you click it, you’re supposed to go to an order page – well the order page is part of the software so I had to configure that to get the url for the order page.

Then, the order page requires integration with PayPal (or Clickbank). However, I couldn’t set-up PayPal until I’d completed the Thank You Page because PayPal wants to know where to send people back to once they’ve completed the order.

Back to the software. . . Then I noticed that I also hadn’t set-up the autresponder system, which is the tool that automatically sends out confirmation e-mails and future follow-up e-mails. That meant that I needed to go to my autoresponder to get the code and add it to the software.

Once I got all of that configured correctly, I still needed to upload the product and then use my cpanel to password protect the folder that houses the product. That certainly won’t stop the “product theft”, but it will slow some of it down.

I’m pretty sure that when I have all that done this week, it will work beautifully. I can’t say that I recommend the affiliate tracking software yet, but it does come highly recommended. All the other tools here I use quite often and enjoy.

So in somewhat chronological order, here’s the tools you need to create an affiliate site:

1. First of all you need a domain name. I’ve used GoDaddy to buy my domain names, but I host them elsewhere.

2. I’ve used Hostgator to host my sites. I like the cpanel and the price is right.

3. Then you’re going to need the affiliate tracking software. I’m using Delavo, but haven’t used it long enough to give you an opinion.

4. After that it would be helpful to have an autoresponder set up. That way you can send confirmation e-mails, follow-up e-mails, product updates, etc. I use AWeber but envision I’ll change to ByPassPublisher sometime later this year.

Image representing AWeber Communications as de...

Image via CrunchBase

5. To get paid, I use PayPal, but I think you’d be better off if you could take credit cards on your site with a merchant number. Unfortunately, no matter how you slice it – you’re going to be giving a piece of the pie away.

6. To load up the software and sales page to your site, I recommend downloading filezilla. It’s a free tool that will help you in everyway. If you’re building a WordPress site, however, you won’t need filezilla. Either use Fantastico in your cpanel, or this free WordPress Installer.

7. The only other tools you may need would be an html editor (like NVU which is free) and perhaps a .pdf creator like Adobe.

Once you have those things in place – you’re ready to go!

The NAMS 3 Action Guide is Ready

The NAMS 4 ACTION GUIDE IS READY HERE: http://lettersfromdan.com/namsactionguide/

I’ve finally finished the NAMS 3 Action Guide.  Writing from the perspective of someone who’s been to the first 2 NAMS events, I thought I’d give you some perspective on how to make the best of the event.

Please let me know what you think, and if you went to the first two NAMS events – what did I leave out?

What to Name Your Facebook Group or Fan Page

The name you pick for your Facebook group or Fan Page is critical to its success. If subscribing to groups and becoming fans of pages were a private thing, and no one knew that you did so – titles would probably not be as important. But on Facebook – becoming a fan or joining a group is a way to communicate to others what you like – and who you are.

Look at the Facebook Group called “I Went to Bellevue East High School” – there’s no real content value there. In fact all the posts are “Hey, I went there too and I went to X elementary school”. But,  what if that was the Facebook Group name of the school you went to? Would you click on it?

Image representing Facebook as depicted in Cru...
Image via CrunchBase

Compare that to a Facebook Group named “My Favorite Place to Take Kids on Vacation Is. . .”. This is one of the most content rich, user generated Facebook Pages. There’s no spam, and users give great tips on places to take their kids on vacation. Awesome resource.

But if you think about the Buying Process, as we’ve talked so many times about, people don’t necessarily come to Facebook for content. You’re at Facebook to connect, write on people’s walls and show people pictures and tidbits about you. Having the title “My Favorite Place To Take Kids on Vacation Is. . .” on your Facebook wall doesn’t say anything about you. Maybe it tells people you have kids, but it doesn’t tell people what your favorite place is. The only reason you’d join that group is if you were actually looking for that kind of information.

Let’s look at the numbers. The Facebook group with the title that speaks volumes about who you are by showing people where you came from drew 486 people in a matter of three weeks. The heavily promoted Kids on Vacation site garnered 200 people in 9 months.

Aside from choosing a shocking title like “I Will Quit Facebook If They Start Charging Us”, choose a title that speaks volumes about the person who joins it.

Think about this. . . People talk about going to Legoland on the Taking Kids on Vacation group. It’s a great place to learn about it, but the Legoland California fan page has 2,016 people and the Legoland Billund site has over 5,900.

Would you rather tell your Facebook friends “I have kids” or “I’ve been to Legoland California and it rocks”? Tell me which group you’d join.

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