How did you pick the product(s) that you’re currently promoting? What processes, if any, did you go through to evaluate the potential for the product? Are you happy with your affiliate marketing results? Is your site as productive as it should be? Do you even have a way to determine that?

Too many affiliate marketers make the all important decision about what product they are going to promote without having enough information.
They either see or hear about a hot new product, or they go with a tried and true product that thousands of others are promoting as well, or sometimes they purchased a product and became so enamored with it they just know others will want one too.
Sure it’s good to have an emotional connection to the product, but emotions don’t tell you the hard facts about its potential as a commercial success.
Don’t do it alone. There’s a conversation you must have and engage in.
When you’re evaluating a product ask yourself “who knows the most about this thing and how it performs sales-wise?” The answer is the manufacturer or service provider, right? If the product or service has an affiliate program then the person that can help you the most is the Affiliate Manager.
But here’s where it can get dicey. If the product you’re considering is already popular then the company is probably constantly being bombarded with requests for information or approval as an affiliate. You have to find a way to differentiate yourself from the mob, particularly if you don’t have a website built yet.
Be prepared to present your business. If you have other sites that you can point to that’s a great leg up, but if this is your first go, be sure you can explain how and why you would be an excellent affiliate (providing you determine the product fits your plan). The affiliate manager’s job is to increase sales through links coming from qualified affiliates. It’s in his or her best interest to assist those qualified affiliates in any manner that he or she can.
Affiliate managers, particularly Outsourced Program Managers (OPM) can provide a wealth of information on the products they promote. We’re talking conversion rates, average sale size, what works best and a ton of helpful information. Finding a responsive affiliate manager can sometimes be challenging but when you do, work hard at developing the relationship. A student of mine is doing a stroller site showcasing the Bumbleride Indie twin stroller, and what the affiliate manager had to say was so helpful in promoting the product.
So if you are seriously considering promoting a new product make sure you touch base with the affiliate manager before you commit your online marketing resources.
About the author: James Martell has been teaching others how to earn extra income online with affiliate programs for over a decade and he has been himself a successful full-time affiliate marketers since 1999. James is the host of the 1st EVER and longest running podcast (the “Affiliate Buzz) and has a weekly show on Webmasterradio.FM. Part of the training James does is teach students how to do product reviews such as Joovy Caboose reviews, kitchen appliance reviews and many more.