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How To Investigate Affiliate Opportunities



How To Investigate Affiliate Opportunities

When it comes to website affiliation, you will need to know how to conduct a market study because this is how you will find your target audience. Without a targeted audience, your marketing campaigns will not be effective. It is good to keep track of your objectives.

Now, initially you might have few ideas as to what to promote so think of your hobbies or work activites that you have knowledge of. So, while the article may seem to imply you start some corporation to impress potential merchants, it is not necessary at all. Rather, what follows gives you some idea of what to consider. There is no point promoting companies that disappear quickly as it is a waste of your efforts.

Marketing Study Outline

In order to be able to conduct a decent targeting and marketing campaign, you must first understand the fundamentals of finding out what they are. They only way to do this is to follow a specific guideline for you to follow. Check out the guideline below.

1. Your Objective to the Research

Explain in one paragraph why the research is being done, what you hope to learn and for what purpose the information that you attain may be used

2. Description of the Market

This should be general like one paragraph

Who is your Target Market(s)

  • Why you chose this particular market
  • Get a complete profile of your market (e.g., demographics, psychographics, behaviors)
  • What benefits does your market seek (i.e., what points-of-pain or problems are being solved)
  • What factors can affect their decision to purchase or use your product/service
  • What attitudes do they have about the products/services that are currently not on the market
  • How is the product used
  • Products and Services that appeal to the target market
  • In general terms, what is currently so appealing to this market
  • If there are no current providers, what types of products/services may appeal to this market in the future (i.e., what is used now to solve the problem).

3. Market Metrics

Get many Size estimates (current and future) for all of the following:

  • Overall market
  • Current size as it stands
  • Potential size for the future
  • Actual penetration of current products/service within the entire market

Individual market segments

  • Current size
  • Potential size
  • Actual penetration of current products/service within the total market
  • Usage rates
  • Frequency of product purchases
  • Growth estimates (current and in the future) for:
  • Overall market
  • Individual market segments

4. Competitive Analysis

Listing the competition by market share ranking (by each target market if possible) is a good way to size them up. You can also be more specific by searching for individual points listed below.

Current Competitors - full analysis of top competitors including:

• Products & Services (e.g., description, uniqueness, pricing, etc.)
• Their Market share at current
• Current customers (targeted audience)
• Positioning and promotion strategies
• Partnerships/Alliances/Distributors
• Recent news

SWOT Analysis - Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities & Threats

It is extremely important to focus attention on the SWOT section of this report. While most other information in this report can be gleaned from company and secondary materials, much of what appears in the SWOT section is based on the researcher’s own opinions of the competitor based on the information that is collected.

Potential Competitors (any competition in the future)

You will need to get an explanation (though it need not be as detailed as Current Competitors) on who they are or maybe and why they are seen as potential competitors

5. Additional

• Extraneous Variables

* Discuss factors that may affect this market (e.g., technological, social, governmental, competitive, etc.)

• Market Trends and what is expected to happen in the future

If you can follow these basic tips for finding and selecting your target market, you should be ready to search online and check out the competition and their rankings in the search engines. Below are some general guidelines for you to follow in creating your competitive analysis which is the most important factor in being an affiliate marketer. Knowing your competition just as well as your audience is the key point which is going to keep you on top.

GUIDELINES FOR DOING A COMPETITIVE ANALYSIS

The competitive analysis section works best when it follows a format like the one that is shown below.

• General Company Information which includes name, location (headquarters, other locations of importance), website address

• Summary of the Business which includes a section that will summarize the company, business units and the general nature of the business

• Business Overview should include sections on the history, ownership structure, types of businesses, mission, strategy/objectives, and key executives

• Recent News/Developments such as important company developments within last 6-12 months (e.g., reports from news sources, press releases, financial statements)

• Financial and Market Share Analysis – includes sections on corporate performance, trends, market share for product

• Marketing in general should include sections on products and services that are offered, target markets, positioning, customers/users, pricing model, promotional efforts, sales force, and distribution

• Other Miscellaneous Issues like adding sections on technology capability, partnership arrangements, and intangible issues

• A list of your Competitors where you will list key competitors facing this company

• SWOT – strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats

Once you have completed your market analysis and target audience, you will want to choose who you are looking to affiliate with. You can start by looking at comsumer sites on the web to get ideas of what is hot and more importantly, what is not.

Now you may not be this comprehensive and that does not matter.There are affiliate directories out there you can go to and find out more and that is where you should spend some time conducting research.The purpose of this article really is to convey the fact the marketplace is huge and help you to consider the good companies from the bad companies.

 


About the Author

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