My 500th post: Easy pickings - piggyback on physical product launches for easy affiliate sales!

25 replies
Wow, it's time for my 500th post already! What can I say except, why on earth didn't I get involved in the WF some 3 or 4 years ago when I first encountered it, instead of hanging around on some vastly inferior forums. I guess I found it a little impenetrable (especially the WSO section, I remember thinking, what is THAT all about?! Ha ha). My learning curve since coming here has been massively steep but the best IM education I could have hoped for, and it's reflecting on my bank balance!

Anyway, in line with tradition, I want to give something back and share something that works for me and might help some Warriors out there. Only got time for a quick and simple tip this time, will wait for my 10,000th post for the real juicy stuff


Piggybacking on physical product launches

I am not talking about Clickbank-type launches, where you blog about Is XYZ a Scam (though you’ve never seen it!), I mean physical product launches. Actually, I know there are plenty of people out there capitalising on product launches in different ways. There was a good thread here somewhere recently about video game launches. But here's my take:

New physical products are coming out ALL the time. And if you are the first to blog, make a microniche site or write a good article about a new product, the chances are very good you will make Google page one, just because Google can’t find any other content on the subject, or because you got first dibs on it! In fact for one niche product I occupy almost ALL the page one slots with my properties of one sort or another!

This approach can be used by bum marketers, microniche site builders and authority bloggers (though these guys are probably already doing this). This would be my ‘MAIN sideline’ if I wasn’t focused on some more long-term projects and products. As it is, I don’t really have time for this, so I want to throw it out there to the Warriors.


How to be the first to write about a new product

Again, this will be blindingly obvious to some, but let’s go through a few ways I am doing this. The most obvious is RSS feeds. RSS feeds are not JUST for promoting your sites with, they are also an endless mine of niche product information.

When a new product is announced, the manufacturer usually puts out a press release and, if they are remotely tech savvy (which is why this approach is most straightforward in the tech niches, though see my reservations below) they also publish this release to their RSS feed. In fact, many of them have a ‘New products’ feed where they publish every new product that they are bringing out, many of which may not even get mentioned in a press release.

Actually, the top manufacturers have MANY different RSS feeds. For example, check out Sony’s RSS feed page: RSS : Sony. There are loads of different feeds on there, and if you subscribe to them, you can have TONS of freshly-baked new niche ideas shoveled into your inbox every day!

What I do is this:

1) pick my general niche, e.g. cellphones. Actually, tech is not the best subject area for this, as I will explain later, but easiest to use as an example.
2) if I am not familiar with the top manufacturers in the niche (unlikely in the case of cellphones, but in other niches you might need to research this), I go to Amazon and search the cellphones section, sorting by Bestselling, so I can see who the top selling manufacturers are.
3) then I Google for the manufacturers' sites and look for an RSS feeds section. E.g. I found Motorola’s site for their mobile phone business here: http://mediacenter.motorola.com/ then found the page with RSS feeds on: http://mediacenter.motorola.com/cont...NewsAreaID=139. Now I would grab the Mobile Devices feed (Motorola Mobile Devices: English) and subscribe to it in Google Reader. I have done the same with lots of different manufacturers I am interested in, and I check this every day, or at least every day I need some new niche ideas.
4) Let’s have a look at Motorola’s news feed. I see the latest headline: Motorola XOOM Tablet To Be Available On The Verizon Wireless Network On Feb. 24. Actually, this article was published 2 days ago, so we are a little late for this one, got to be quicker next time But anyway, for example’s sake, click through to that article and you will get the press release on Motorola’s site. Now, do you think there is an opportunity for an affiliate marketers here? Well, honestly, I don’t know for sure, so I would do some additional steps...:
  • Research the product a little, see if it is a followup to an older model?
  • How did that model sell?
  • What’s the Adwords Keyword Tool search volume for keywords relating to that predecessor model?
  • Is there an affiliate program you can earn from? (Amazon doesn’t have this Verizon/Motorola Xoom deal, but maybe you will find something. At the end of the day, there is always Adsense!)
How to make money from this knowledge

Assuming you have done some due diligence and think there is something to be made from this niche, it’s time to do whatever you do to get some content out there.

But just one thing to notice - try Googling that exact headline in quotes and what do you see? You see LOADS of sites with a verbatim copy of the same press release! So much for duplicate content! Google is crying out for something original to list on page one on the subject. You should note of course that the average surfer is more likely to search for ‘xoom tablet verizon’ (check out the Google Trend for this too: Google Trends: motorola xoom verizon and check out that spike!) or something similar. If you do that you get some quite different results - mostly tech blogs, some of them dated within the last few days, who have blogged on the subject, but written an original article and leveraged their authority status/high site PR to get to page one. Now how do you think most of them found out about the new Motorola Xoom tablet deal with Verizon? Exactly the same way we just did!

Now that’s why I said the tech niche wasn’t the best example, because these guys are QUICK, and they are packing some huge site authority. That doesn’t mean you can’t knock them out, by leveraging a high-PR site yourself, or creating an authority niche blog like theirs. But I would suggest avoiding tech and going for other less tech-savvy niches - household goods, whatever. The only problem is, these manufacturers often DON’T have an RSS feed (crazy but true), so you have to get a bit more imaginative. Go look at their press-room (usually a link in their site footer) and there will usually be some recent press releases. Subscribe to their email list. Even if they don’t have a feed, there are free services around the net which will monitor a page you specify (i.e. their press release page) and email you when something changes (e.g. here: ChangeDetection - Monitor a Web Page for Changes). Again, when a new product is announced, research it, estimate the chances that it will be a winner.

For the sake of the example, assuming we are sticking with the Motorola Verizon Xoom news, we want to leverage a high-PR site and get ourselves up on page one with the big boys, or in non-tech niches often ALONE on page one with no competition, much better So here are some ideas on how I have done this in the past - and these are just methods that I personally am comfortable with:

Build a quick niche site
PLEASE don’t ask me how to do this, what Wordpress template to use, what keywords to use etc.! Just go and do it What I have done in the past is write a static article for page one that is a rewrite of the press release and which includes other info that you have researched, anything related really, like what other similar models the manufacturer has launched in the past, what general tech trends this fits into etc. etc.
Other static pages can be things like a page of technical specifications, a page about the specific technology involved, a page about competing products bla bla - again, use your imagination, do NOT overthink this!
I have a site like this for a car accessory on a .info domain hogging the top FOUR slots on page one - the rest of page one is pages from the manufacturer’s site and some other articles about the product (guess whose ). Now, this product has turned out to be MONTHS late in coming out, but I don’t care. When it does, my position will have become pretty much unassailable - and it took me VERY little time or cost to do. The item in question can fetch me around $65 in commission per sale, and the predecessor model gets 8,000 exact match searches per month globally. Worth waiting for? You bet, and in the meantime I can earn a little from Adsense etc.

Other methods
OK, this is getting a bit long, so I will just mention a couple of other things - one is article marketing. Write a good, somewhat longer and detailed article on the product (again, a good rewrite of the press release with your own touch) and submit to some of the high-PR article sites. I would not look much further than EZA, ArticlesBase and GoArticles. The disadvantage of EZA is you can’t have an affiliate link, so register a cheap .info that you can redirect. One or more of these articles is very likely to make page one. The only disadavantage with article marketing is it may not stay there...

Or make a Hubpage, or make a Squidoo Lens, reworking the material slightly into a nice, varied Hubpage/Lens. These all work great.

Actually, do ALL of the above! For some niches I have MULTIPLE page one entries with my different properties.

Now, this method can be hit-and-miss, you will have some failures, and sometimes it can take a while before the search volume actually turns up for the product in question. But it is very simple to do - you can probably do bum marketing this way and knock out several articles/Squidoos etc. a day for different products - some of them WILL stick and you WILL make money over the life cycle of these products!

Hope that helps someone. There’s no rocket science in this, but let me know if anything isn’t clear and I will try to explain. Bear in mind I am not really trying to tell you how to monetise this - you will figure it out, whatever model you are comfortable with. The idea here is to be the first to publish content on new products by leveraging RSS feeds and other sources of product information which you will get delivered to your inbox in large volume and on a daily basis. As ever, it's up to you to take action.
#500th #affiliate #easy #launches #physical #pickings #piggyback #post #product #sales
  • Profile picture of the author paulie888
    Thanks for sharing this. Many people are put off by physical products because of the lower commissions, but what they don't realize is that physical products tend to have far greater longevity than digital products, which don't tend to have very much staying power in the marketplace. The lower commissions are more than compensated by the longer timeframe in which you'll be able to benefit from commissions on a physical product.
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    • Profile picture of the author markowe
      Originally Posted by peterjamesmorris View Post

      Great information - thanks so much for sharing!

      I'm very new to IM, but it's great being on this forum and seeing such examples of creative thinking. Gets the cogs in my own head turning a bit!
      Go for it, mash up this idea with other good ideas on this forum and come up with your own unique angle. There is every reason to succeed when you do that.

      Originally Posted by paulie888 View Post

      Thanks for sharing this. Many people are put off by physical products because of the lower commissions, but what they don't realize is that physical products tend to have far greater longevity than digital products, which don't tend to have very much staying power in the marketplace. The lower commissions are more than compensated by the longer timeframe in which you'll be able to benefit from commissions on a physical product.
      Absolutely - I mean are there really 8000 people searching for $700 Clickbank products monthly?! I doubt it! And with physical products, people are already very much in 'research mode' or 'pre-buy' mode, plus Amazon, eBay and the other big retailers have a huge trust factor and convert very well. So it would be very simplistic to say physical products are not a good earner, when there are people obviously making huge money out of affiliate sales this way.
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      • Profile picture of the author paulie888
        Originally Posted by markowe View Post




        Absolutely - I mean are there really 8000 people searching for $700 Clickbank products monthly?! I doubt it! And with physical products, people are already very much in 'research mode' or 'pre-buy' mode, plus Amazon, eBay and the other big retailers have a huge trust factor and convert very well. So it would be very simplistic to say physical products are not a good earner, when there are people obviously making huge money out of affiliate sales this way.
        You're absolutely right. When people search for a model number or name of a product, they're already in a pre-buying mode, and ranking for such a term will garner far more conversions than ranking for your typical Clickbank product name - there's absolutely no contest here!
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        • Profile picture of the author markowe
          Originally Posted by paulie888 View Post

          You're absolutely right. When people search for a model number or name of a product, they're already in a pre-buying mode, and ranking for such a term will garner far more conversions than ranking for your typical Clickbank product name - there's absolutely no contest here!
          Definitely, Clickbank is a whole different game with those launches and bonuses and everything, because it's mostly an IM in-thing and they are only Googling the exact product name if they are part of the IM crowd. Whereas non-IMers are usually just trying to solve a problem, they don't care when the product was/is being launched. (Though I hear there ARE big product launches in other niches).

          By the way, I forgot to mention a couple of things in the original thread - usually you start getting traffic before the product is out, so you can get people on a mailing list by saying, "Sign up and we'll let you know when it comes out". Then of course you hit them with the affiliate link when the product becomes available. Works better for things like video games where people are dead set on buying a particular product, not so well when there is a lot of choice in the market because they'll just go and buy a different product because they need to solve the problem now. In that case you can say, "XYZ product will be a while coming out, but have you considered the ABC, it's been around longer, you can get a good price, etc. etc."
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  • Profile picture of the author onlineballa
    This really is a great strategy you have posted. I never have seen this or even heard of it before. thanks for the info +thanks
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  • Profile picture of the author amylimcd
    Thanks for the insight!

    Very timely for me as I have been pondering over possible methods to get a head start when it comes to finding out about upcoming product releases and did not even think of RSS feeds of manufacturers- genius!

    I know in some niches there are online news sites that specialize in wanting to break news of new products (TechCrunch for example for tech gadgets).

    One other thought I had was to find sites that cater to retailers of a certain product type- these guys will make announcements as well to their retailer base. I got this idea because I have a friend who owns a small tennis store in town and he gets these emails from tennis manufacturers with a heads up on their upcoming product releases.

    For some of my niche product sites that rank well and get a decent amount of traffic, I thought it might be worth the effort to do the research- i.e., hire a researcher on oDesk to see if they can find such sites companies/sites that might have B2B announcements of product releases.

    But your idea streamlines this- just go straight to the product manufacturers!

    Thanks again!

    Amy
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  • Profile picture of the author tonio79
    Happy 500th post.
    Everything in it makes sense and is completely achievable and do able and most importantly long term wise....rinse and repeatable!
    No real saturation point either as new products will ALWAYS come out in their thousands....its the kind of society we are these days. We consume everything and have a need for the newest and best at all times!

    Good work and i look forward to reading you 1000th post sometime soon.

    Tonio
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    • Profile picture of the author markowe
      Originally Posted by onlineballa View Post

      This really is a great strategy you have posted. I never have seen this or even heard of it before. thanks for the info +thanks
      You're welcome!

      Originally Posted by amylimcd View Post

      Thanks for the insight!

      Very timely for me as I have been pondering over possible methods to get a head start when it comes to finding out about upcoming product releases and did not even think of RSS feeds of manufacturers- genius!

      I know in some niches there are online news sites that specialize in wanting to break news of new products (TechCrunch for example for tech gadgets).

      One other thought I had was to find sites that cater to retailers of a certain product type- these guys will make announcements as well to their retailer base. I got this idea because I have a friend who owns a small tennis store in town and he gets these emails from tennis manufacturers with a heads up on their upcoming product releases.

      For some of my niche product sites that rank well and get a decent amount of traffic, I thought it might be worth the effort to do the research- i.e., hire a researcher on oDesk to see if they can find such sites companies/sites that might have B2B announcements of product releases.

      But your idea streamlines this- just go straight to the product manufacturers!

      Thanks again!

      Amy

      Yes, the manufacturers are actually TELLING you what the new products are, and that's the way most of the authority blogs are finding out about them. Now, that's not to say there aren't certain dealers and certain media who aren't getting privileged information ahead of the publication of press releases/RSS updates, so there might still be some mileage in trying to get inside information from other sources. But for most of us relative smalltimers, if were more consistent with picking up these product releases and posting about them on our product niche blogs we would start really seeing some results.

      What I want to do is start off this process with a new niche site I have started and as soon as it is earning something, start outsourcing this product news part - really easy to manage, just give the feed to the outsourcer and say, WRITE! One article a day, or whatever your budget is.

      Good luck!

      Originally Posted by tonio79 View Post

      Happy 500th post.
      Everything in it makes sense and is completely achievable and do able and most importantly long term wise....rinse and repeatable!
      No real saturation point either as new products will ALWAYS come out in their thousands....its the kind of society we are these days. We consume everything and have a need for the newest and best at all times!

      Good work and i look forward to reading you 1000th post sometime soon.

      Tonio
      I spend too much time on WF, so my 1000th won't be long coming Thanks for the encouragement. Yes, there are CONSTANTLY new models coming out (have you any idea how many new washing machine models come out every week!!) it's just picking the winners, or else blogging on them ALL and becoming an authority!
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  • Profile picture of the author UnderCoverKiwi
    Great thread ! and Happy 500th to you! I was pleased to read all this because I have my teeth into a physical product right now. RSS feeds for up to date info - hehe - wasn't that what they were initially for? I almost forgot.
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    • Profile picture of the author markowe
      Originally Posted by UnderCoverKiwi View Post

      Great thread ! and Happy 500th to you! I was pleased to read all this because I have my teeth into a physical product right now. RSS feeds for up to date info - hehe - wasn't that what they were initially for? I almost forgot.
      Thanks, yeah, I was originally going to call the thread something like:

      A Groundbreaking New Use for RSS Feeds!
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    • Profile picture of the author markowe
      Originally Posted by Nick Sammut View Post

      Great thread Mark. This is why this forum was created
      Thanks! Yes, some idiot started it all off by giving away good information and now we all feel indebted to do the same! Coises!
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      • Profile picture of the author Lares
        Thanks for sharing. This is very valuable information. Bookmarked your post for future use
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    • Profile picture of the author David Uebergang
      I love this, a great concept that I want to try out myself sooner or later. Is this somewhat the same as "Launch Jacking"?

      A couple quick questions;

      How do you build/manage the list? Is it as simple as linking your articles about the product to be released to a squeeze page on your site, and you simply inform them when it is released?

      Is it a good idea to build up a list for related products that will come out in the future? ie. if you are targeting the games niche, is it a good idea to recommend genre related games and you could have a list for each genre?

      Thanks,

      David
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      • Profile picture of the author cobwab
        Thank You for sharing this post.

        It sounds a lot like launch jacking new product launches but with physical products appears to be more sustainable.
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        • Profile picture of the author tinytot11
          Great post, thanks. I bet this would work with new launches coming out just before Christmas. You know the latest toy or something that every kid just has to have.

          Vic
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          • Profile picture of the author markowe
            Sorry, seem to have missed a couple of the posts that came up.

            Originally Posted by cobwab View Post

            Thank You for sharing this post.

            It sounds a lot like launch jacking new product launches but with physical products appears to be more sustainable.
            There's a term I haven't even heard - 'launch-jacking', like it. I think that's exactly what it can be

            Originally Posted by tinytot11 View Post

            Great post, thanks. I bet this would work with new launches coming out just before Christmas. You know the latest toy or something that every kid just has to have.

            Vic
            DEFINITELY! I think there are a lot of people already doing that with different niches (Halloween is one I hear mentioned a lot - costumes and whatnot), but this would involve keeping your ear to the ground (I mean, the feed!) as much as 3 or 4 months before Christmas and trying to figure out what's going to be hot. The video games publishers are especially keen to launch their products in the run-up to Christmas, but you have to be up on the niche obviously and I am a bit behind on that now I think you can have a good guess at what is going to be hot based on current trends. Of course, seasonal promotion in general works well.

            Originally Posted by David Uebergang View Post

            I love this, a great concept that I want to try out myself sooner or later. Is this somewhat the same as "Launch Jacking"?

            A couple quick questions;

            How do you build/manage the list? Is it as simple as linking your articles about the product to be released to a squeeze page on your site, and you simply inform them when it is released?

            Is it a good idea to build up a list for related products that will come out in the future? ie. if you are targeting the games niche, is it a good idea to recommend genre related games and you could have a list for each genre?

            Thanks,

            David
            David, I have a Wordpress widget set up on the sidebar, or embedded in the article text, containing my aWeber optin, and it just says something like: "The XYZ is not out yet, but you can be the first to know!" and usually mention something about finding the best deal too.

            Then I would just email them the very second it is available for order (or often preorder on Amazon) and link them to the offer, though remember many affiliate programs (Amazon, eBay, CJ unless with prior agreement) don't allow linking from emails, so you have to set up a little sales page on your site - no big deal, they all want 'it' (whatever 'it' is!), so they will all click through.

            The continuity thing is a good idea. It doesn't work for all niches just because sometimes the thing they are buying is some kind of one-off, but generally, yes, if I am promoting this new car accessory then I can certainly promote other car-related stuff to them. Though I think with that one the niche is a bit too general. With some kind of 'passionate' niche, like Apple-fans , even after they bought the iPad 2 you can offer them the iPoo next month and they'll grab it up (sorry, couldn't resist a dig, at the risk of alienating half the WF, he he)
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  • Greetings Marc,

    Congratulations on your 500th post … I agree with you, that this is the best forum for Internet marketers.

    Thank you so much for your generous sharing of this information on finding new niches of physical products.

    The volume of sales with physical products, far exceeds the sales of digital products.

    As long as you are working with a quality and recognizable supplier … It is far easier to find buyers within the physical product niche that you are working with.

    The percent of commissions is lower, because the volume is much higher, and there are more purchasers available ... you can make some very decent decent monthly income, that will normally last for a much longer period of time, than the income from a digital product might last.


    A couple of the things that I like about Amazon, is their credibility, and once your potential client is directed to their site … Any product in any niche that they purchase is credited to your account.


    Wishing you and your family all of the very best … Ron
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  • Profile picture of the author DebiJ
    Really appreciate you sharing this info. I've been working on several info products and like to have my "eggs" in a few baskets. So having another way to search out physical products is a good thing!

    Thanks again!
    Debi
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  • Profile picture of the author markowe
    Thank you Debi, hope that's a few more 'eggs' for you I am going to start a new blog soon in a sports niche - there is LOADS of gear and other stuff that can be promoted on the back of the main product I am targetting, and I will certainly be applying this model: collecting manufacturers' feeds and making sure I am the first to write on any new product
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