Profit is assumed in business (was Re: Affiliates-ass-milliates)

From: Linda Caroll <>
Date: Fri 14 Sep 2001 14:00:58 -0500


>Forget about using banners. That's about the worst
>possible way to try to earn money with affiliate programs.
>Try writing an honest, enthusiastic endorsement
>for a product you really believe in, and send your
>endorsement to a double opt-in list of subscribers
>who have learned to trust your opinion. That works.


>...the fact that you are getting a commission off
>of the sale dilutes the value of your endorsement
>if it is not fully disclosed. You will be better off cutting
>a one to one deal with the seller asking for specific,
>exclusive bargains you might offer your subscribers

Cutting an one to one deal with a seller to offer an
exclusive is a fantastic idea. Brick and mortar
businesses do that all the time. Why? It works.

However.... I do NOT believe that the value of an
endorsement is diluted if you don't "disclose"
that fact that you make a commission.

When you buy new tires for your car, does the
clerk say to you "We make a profit on telling
you how good BF Goodrich tires are" before
they sell you the tires? Of course not.

The value of a recommendation is diluted by
making poorly chosen recommendations.

If - time after time- you "recommend" trash
for the commission, your recommendation
will soon mean nothing. If time after time, you
make recommendations of products that are
fantastic- your recommendations are credible.

In the long run, the reputation you build is based
on what you recommend. It is not dependant on
whether or not you disclose that you make a
profit for selling goods. After all, isn't profit the
goal of being in business in the first place?

Furthermore, when I see an endorsement followed
by disclosure "I get paid commission for this product,"
the disclosure negates the "personal" aspect of the
endorsement. It's as though they are saying
"I'm saying this because I'm paid to."

When you go to Yahoo and type in a search for
widgets - and ads for "widgets for sale" appear
on the search results page, do you see disclosures
saying "Yahoo was paid to put this ad here"?
Of course not. Profit doing business is assumed.

Linda Carroll

Received on Fri Sep 14 2001 - 14:00:58 CDT


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