Posted by Mitch Mitchell on Jan 7, 2009
Today I’m flying back home, after finding that, when I got back to Reno, the CFO of the hospital I was consulting for had hired another consultant to take over what I’d been doing. The odd things are that I didn’t report to him, but someone else, and that person had sent an email out last week saying he was appreciative of the good job I was doing. Anyway, as a consultant, it’s the type of thing one has to deal with, so I get to come home and reload.
However, these types of situations always lead to many questions, and one of those questions that also applies to internet marketing and affiliate marketing and our blogs and websites is just how much control we really have over all of it. It sounds strange when one considers what it is many of us are trying to do with our blogs and websites, which is to generate some kind of income, because we’re the ones who build the websites, and we’re the ones who write the content for our blogs, and we’re the ones who select the items we want to market on our blogs. It all gives us this facade of control, but just how much control do we really have?
Let’s look at affiliates first. The main two that I belong to are Commission Junction and Google Performance Network. Overall, they’re not bad, though I’m not making nearly the income I thought I would. However, since May, I have lost many affiliates because New York state decided that online affiliate companies have to collect taxes from sales made by New York state affiliate marketers. I also ranted about the taxes a few days later when I lost a few more affiliates. And then last month I lost even more affiliates for the same reason, just when I thought that time period had passed. After all, both CJ and GPN know that I’m from New York, so you’d think they would automatically disqualify me from some programs where their advertisers have informed them that they don’t want to work with New York marketers.
Of course, that’s not the only issue with affiliates. Lately there have been a number of affiliates through Commission Junction that are changing their payout schedules, as well as changing the marketing rules for how you’re allowed to advertise for them, and you can bet that none of it is in our favor. Some other affiliate types are discontinuing signing bonuses for new marketers, citing cash issues, which to me is an incorrect tactic in a negative market because those companies that did offer it also had a goals level that one had to attain in sales before they could collect on it. Frankly, it might have made more sense to raise that level for new affiliate marketers than what they’ve done, but it’s still proof of one more thing that’s out of our control.
I also believe my December report, which Ajith had indicated wasn’t very good, shows that, as much as most of us work to attain high visit numbers to help generate some sort of income for not only our blogs but our websites. sometimes requires some extraordinary efforts that, though they might seem are within our control, and my little research project showed that it’s really not all that easy to figure out just what’s going to impress visitors, search engines, and advertisers.
Does this mean we give up and let anarchy take over? Not at all; however, it does mean that all of us need to think more about these types of things and be ready to alter our processes for maximum effect without too much effort that brings low returns. Heck, y’all have seen my goals, and I realize that to reach these goals, and my personal financial goals, so I have a lot of work and a lot of thought to all of it.
What do you think of my reasoning, and how would you decide to progress where your effort equals your input?