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Vol. 1 issue #77 Sep 20, 2003


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Jumping on the "Next Big Opportunity" Bandwagon
2003 By Angela Wu

How many times have you received email inviting you to join a brand-new opportunity -- one that's "sure" to be a success? Often times, we're told that we can strike it big if we join an opportunity early:
  • We can be one of the first to promote the opportunity to our lists. The market isn't yet saturated with others promoting the same thing, and we can "brand" potential customers with our affiliate or distributor link.
  • We can refer others to the program, build a large "downline" (before they join under someone else's referral), and earn a percentage of the sales they produce. This is sometimes touted as being an easy way to make more money with no extra work.

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New opportunities can certainly have a special allure.
However, not all of them will be successful - you could be joining the next big loser. Promoting something early runs the risk of promoting something that's going to be a waste of your time and effort. Worse, it could trigger the question of your credibility if you endorse the wrong product.

Before you join the "next big opportunity", consider:

  • When was the product released? This is important because it gives you an idea of how much time it's been "tested". For instance, a piece of software should be tested extensively on a variety of different computer systems before you can say it really "works". Or "The Foolproof Guide to Housetraining Your Puppy In 10 Days" needs time to be put into practice. Over time, more information will become available about what customers like and dislike about the product.
  • How do -you- like the product? If you're going to endorse a product, make sure it's worthy of your recommendation. First-hand knowledge of the product will also help you in your promotional efforts since you'll be able to tell people some of its uses and benefits.
  • What attitude does the company have towards  customer service? Regardless of how great the sales copy is, or how high the conversion rate, if customer service is sub-par, there will be a higher-than-normal percentage of disgruntled customers and a higher rate of returns and chargebacks. Those come directly back out of your commissions! You also don't want to tarnish your reputation by associating yourself with a company that treats its customers poorly.


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  • What incentives does the opportunity offer if you join?
    What percentage are you offered on sales made by your sub-affiliates or downline? Do you also earn a commission on back-end sales? Will you continue to receive recurring commissions for subscription-based products and services? Do you also receive back-end and recurring commissions from sales made by your sub-affiliates or downline?

    Keep in mind that the simple act of recruiting others isn't necessarily a sure way to higher profits. It's not so important *how many* people you refer; what matters more is how many GOOD people you refer. It's more beneficial to recruit one super-affiliate that steadily produces sales, then to recruit 1000 people  who never earn a single thin dime.
  • How does the company track sales and commissions, and when do you get paid? Are there minimum commissions required before they cut you a cheque? Do they require you to earn a certain number of direct sales in a given time period before they'll pay you for both your own commissions and those due to you through your referrals?
  • Is there a good record of payment to affiliates? All too often we hear about the next great opportunity where people join in swarms. They market aggressively and some even make a decent amount of money -- in theory. Weeks, then months, drag by when the promised payment never materializes. It's a waste of your time and effort to promote an opportunity that doesn't pay out -- not to mention the blow to your credibility if the people you refer also don't get paid. Look for an opportunity that has a solid history of making payments accurately and on time.

    The "fast profits" mentality of the internet encourages people to want to join a new opportunity early so that they don't miss out on the "next big thing". But sitting back and carefully evaluating an opportunity before jumping on the bandwagon gives you the chance to see how things initially play out. Good opportunities don't disappear overnight; they'll still be available tomorrow, next week, or next month.

    -------------------------------- ---------
    Angela is the editor of Online Business Basics, a practical guide to marketing a business on a beginner's budget. This guide offers loads of instantly useable tips and links, in a down-to-earth style that even marketing "newbies" can understand! A helpful Online Business Dictionary is included too... visit: http://onlinebusinessbasics.com/article.html
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