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Site development - Landing pages? Domains? Legal Issues?

rudolf
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Joined: 17 Mar 07
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Site development - Landing pages? Domains? Legal Issues?

Hello, my name is Rudolf, and I've joined Affilorama this afternoon, all the way from the Netherlands!


Although I am new to Affilorama, I am not that new to marketing or AM, I understand the principles of marketing itself, and I've been busy with AM for a while with a friend of mine. We think that with two minds we can accomplish things much easier and it really helps keep morale up. I've already got a great knowledge in website design and graphical imaging, but my experience with advertising is very poor. I've also got some questions that have been circling in my head for a while.

Ofcourse responses would be very much appreciated and some of our main reasons to sign up to Affilorama are your extensive knowledge and direct feedback through this forum.



Q1: Usage of testimonials

What should I do if the affiliate does not or hardly provides any promotional information?

Is it ethical to make up my own testimonials? To be honest I find it best to make my own, since you can fill in the details at free will, for example things you want to emphasize, and adding specific keywords. I've always been wondering, Mark, do you make them up sometimes?

Q2: Where do I get the date code?

I remember Mark's Affilorama sales pitch a half a year ago. I was staring at the price and reading "If you buy Affilorama before Month/Day, it'll cost you only 199,95. Tommorrow the price is going to be increased to.."I was actually wondering; is that a date code? What if it is increased tomorrow? I decided not to buy because I am one of the few who know that such code's can be written. However, I do not know how. This date code is just one of the most ingenious sales techniques I've ever seen, it works and requires no updating. Where can I get this code?

Q3: Mark's secret Landing Page formula

For a while now, we've been analysing Mark's websites. These include; Jamorama, RocketSpanish and one of Amy Waterman's sites, Save My Marriage Today. Now just to name some examples, they all start with the "Why do YOU want to have this and this..", or how about the introductory picture to the left, and the autograph at the bottom. Why does this introduction have to be above the "Who Am I" part? And why does Mark sometimes put the testimonial letters at the top of the page like in Affilorama, while in Jamoram they are compeletely left out?

I'm really curious, how do I find out why he does those things specifically? Or is he just continually experimenting himself to see what works best for each topic? Anyway, I'd like to find out more about his descion making regarding those and other elements which cover his landing pages.

Q4: Mark's landing page elements

Many of Mark's elements are truly ingenious. For example this element I found on Jamorama: "I look forward to getting a letter from you, telling me about your guitar learning experience and about all the people you have impressed with your new found guitar playing skills. Even though I get an enormous amount of mail, please write to me. I'd love to hear your success story!". To what extent am I allowed to use these elements and adapt them to my own topic? Can I copy and paste, rebuild lines or change words so they fit in my own topic? To what extent am I allowed to use his structure, the order and use of elements for a landing page?

Q5: Registrating domain names

Ok, example. I have a dog training landing page. Now I need a domain name. Should I registrate one or two domains, if I wanted the name "DogTrainingProgram.com" should I also go for "Dog-Training-Program.com" so that Google can seperate these keywords?

Q6: Copyrighting your website

One of my main concerns is the copyrights I have. How can I copy-protect my website? Isn't it easy to just save your Jamorama website, change the hoplink code to my own and start my own Google Adwords campaign. Apart from being unethical, I could do this. You would do all the work and I'll take all the credit. I know of a simple and cheap way of copyprotecting a website, but I'm not sure if it's rock-solid. Here's how it works:

Buy an envelope, and a CD. Burn all of your website content on this CD, and make sure you .ace (WinAce is a similar program to WinZip) it all up so you can password protect it. Put it all in the enveloppe. Include a hand-written letter with your name, details, and content of the enveloppe including written date. Seal the envelope and take it to the post office. Have the envelope sent to you through signed mail (so that you will have to sign before the mailman hands you over the envelope). The enveloppe will get a sticker with a date, and unique code. This is proof that the enveloppe has been sent at a specific date to you. Now if ever, you can give the judge the enveloppe as a proof that you created the website or its concept before the infringer did. Will this work, other any other ways of copy-protecting websites?

Q7: Having a company run your Adwords campaign

I've found a company that specialises in managing Adwords campaigns, and they can set an ad up for you for 45 euros a month, for a period of at least three months, excluding bidding money. They will optimize your ad and inform you with results. Honestly, setting up your own Adwords campaign looks like it is very time and money consuming, why should I not leave it to a proffessional for this cheap? Can I trust such companies in the first place?

Q8: Affilorama video lessons in .swf format

I've noticed, that the .swf can't be rewinded or fastforwarded. Adding a button bar with play/pause/stop/rew/ff is quite easy to do in flash, and it will really come in handy when you've missed something or just want to watch a part somewhere on the timeline. Some movies are very long and at the moment I have to wait 20 minutes before I can watch that part again, as I cannot directly ff directly to that specific point on the timeline.



Well, I guess that's it for now. Hopefully I haven't put you up with too much work, and I hope I have contributed something to the community bringing these questions forward.

Many thanks in advance for your time.

Greetings, - Rudolf
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amroch
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Q8: Affilorama video lessons in .swf format

I've noticed, that the .swf can't be rewinded or fastforwarded. Adding a button bar with play/pause/stop/rew/ff is quite easy to do in flash, and it will really come in handy when you've missed something or just want to watch a part somewhere on the timeline. Some movies are very long and at the moment I have to wait 20 minutes before I can watch that part again, as I cannot directly ff directly to that specific point on the timeline.


Hi Rudolf,

Welcome to Affilorama.

Yes, having a control bar always helps. However, (If you already not aware of this ) you can control the .swf movie by using the keyboard - ctrl+Enter to start / pause, ctrl+right arrow to ff, ctrl=left arrow to step back and ctrl+R to rewind.

Amroch
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chatyak86
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Hello Rudolf,

Welcome to Affilorama :)

Q1) It isn't very ethical to make up your own testimonials. That is question of ethics and for yourself to decide. You could however provide useful sayings from yourself or your pen name that include hot topics about the product. Mark has real testimonials for his products.

Q2) Insert this into your page... set the +3 to whatever you like. This is for a numerical date.

<?php
$tomorrow = mktime(0, 0, 0, date("m"), date("d")+3, date("y"));
echo "Order By ".date("m/d/y", $tomorrow);
?>

Q3) These are proven headlines that work. It is a result of testing and testing some more.

Q4) Use the structure that works but create a copy that is unique to your own product :)

Q5) You do not need to put dashes. The engines will recognize dogtraining as dog and training.

Q6) That is fine to do what you suggest. Also, as soon as you create something on the web, it is copyrighted. You do not even need to get an official approval for it. It is wise to include a &copy; etc.... on the bottom of every page.

Q7
) This is a waste of money. Take a few days out and learn how to set up a proper campaign yourself. Knowledge is power - power is freedom.

Q 8) That's not for me to decide. I'll let Mark answer that one :)

Hope this helps....
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PremiumMember
sean06
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I was going to write my own answers, then I realised Adrian had already done it for me ;)
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markling
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Just a quick point before anything else: You're analyzing pages that are designed to sell a product. As an affiliate your goal is not to sell a product... it's to send traffic to the sales page so that the sales page can sell the product. The things you've pointed out are things we use to convert traffic to sales, and while they might be interesting from a curiosity perspective, they're not necessarily essential for affiliates. None of our affiliate sites look like these sales pages, and from an affiliate perspective you'll be wasting your time if you try to *promote* products in a similar way to how a merchant *sells* a product. That said, here are some answers (ignoring questions that have been answered already):

1. Whether you fudge testimonials or not is your own call. We don't invent testimonials, but it's a lot easier to get testimonials when you're creating your own products. Often we'll promote new products to existing customers and offer them some sort of deal in exchange for testimonials. You could try asking the affiliate program manager for the product if they could source some testimonials for affiliates to use as resources.

3. We use page structures that work. What you see on our pages is what we've determined to be the structure that works best for that site, product and market. As you've pointed out, some sites are different, depending on what works in what market. It's by no means a cookie cutter approach. When you're building your own sites you will also have the opportunity to experiment. It's all part of the process.

4. Remember that these elements you point to are for SALES pages, not affiliate pages. Affilorama is a guide for affiliates, not product owners. Also you can not directly plagiarize anything from my sites. I take a very harsh stance on that.

6. Stealing a website? You could try. I think it would come to the attention of the affiliate program manager pretty quickly, and you'd lose your commissions. This happens to us from time to time, and our lawyers are pretty good at dealing with these people. Also I think there are ways of dating a website a bit more sophisticated than using the mailman.

7. You'll gain a lot more and (in the end) make more money if you learn how to do your AdWords yourself.

8. The lessons should be able to be rewound and fastforwarded by clicking in the timeline or dragging the little progress widget at the bottom of the video. If you're viewing the quicktime versions, there's a similar little bar underneath that. Is the control bar missing on all videos for you, or just some? If it's not showing up, we'll look into it.

------
Phew! Hope that answers some of your questions. In future your might get a quicker response (and more responses) if you post your questions individually on the forum :)

Regards,
Mark
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rudolf
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Hello guys, many thanks for all your quick responses.

To be honest, I think I still don't understand. Am I not supposed to promote the product before I send someone to the product or order page? Isn't it important that I convince them of this product first? I'm currently creating a similar landing page to Jamorama (even though the product is in another category), ALL of the pages I've seen have this type of long sales page.That's what I'm trying to create as well.

So I'm kinda confused, should I refrain from making these long sales pages? I've got a product that I can get 50% commission from for each sale, but their product page has very limited information about the product itself. For me it isn't really hard to name all the plus's of this product and why they should get it, so why not sell it to them this way? Because now it's getting confusing for me; am I not supposed to promote this product first, so that the visitor WANT to buy the product?

Also, how would I.. "date" a website then? As students we are on a very low budget, what would be the approach to copyright a website? Will the mailman trick not work? I'm not out on stealing a website myself, but I wanted to know what I can do when someone else (tries) to copy my website. Perhaps he could even press ctrl+f in a webpage editor and replace the product name with another one that is from another affiliate company. How can I prove I was there first?

Finally, what's the difference between a sales and an affiliate page, in shape I mean? A sales page has a long landing page and an affiliate page has.. I don't know? I don't know any better than these long sales pitches or review sites. Perhaps you can point me to some examples? I would be very grateful.

I'll try to remember that last one; I had a lot of questions and I thought summing them up might be better than spamming the forum.

Once again many thanks for all of your time.

P.S.
We have already built a long sales page about a product that is not from your affiliate directory. I just want to get the page to work and get sales from it, and as soon as I'm ready for a new project I intend to pick one from your affiliate directory. Am right that the affiliates you have listed offer everything that I need to promote a product so that I won't have to make stuff up myself?

Greetings, Rudolf
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Last edited by rudolf on 19 Mar 07 9:11 am, edited 1 time in total.
 

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PremiumMember
sean06
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hey Rudolf,

Have you watched the videos yet? If you haven't, you should probably do that so you don't get as confused.

You will see that affiliate sites are different to sales pages. They serve a completely different role and thus need to look different.

It's your job to take away some of the barriers that people might have when they first visit a sales page. Not to actually sell the product.

Let me know if you need to know any more.
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rudolf
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Hi Sean, that was fast!

Which videos do you suggest I should start with. I've already watched most of the parts, and some of them I've skipped since I find setting up a webpage is no problem for me at all, but I would like to know more about how I decide what type of page works best to promote or sell (can I speak of "selling" and "promoting"?) product. Which part can I find more about this?

Greetings, Rudolf
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Site Admin
markling
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Hi Rudolf,

I covered a bit about different landing pages in the six part mini course.

Basically though, if the product doesn't provide a very good landing page, what you want to do is create a landing page that sells the product (as though you are the owner) and then link directly to their order page (via your affiliate link).

If the product owner doesn't have a facility for you to do that, then creating a landing page that looks like a sales page isn't a good idea as conversions won't be as good as they can be.

Why?

Because if you are not the merchant, and you are shouting too much about a product that you don't own, visitors tend to ask themselves why? And conversions aren't as good as if you write in a different style, such as a review.

Long reviews can become hyped later on in the review, but need to start from a skeptical point of view.

Another option is a review page where by you have multiple product reviews on a single page. If you do this, you want to make sure they are all short reviews and don't tell too much about each product (so that people will need to click on the link to the products in order to find out more).

The only reason why I use long reviews or long salescopy approach is when the merchant salescopy is poor. Otherwise I prefer the short review approach because it is easier and converts just as well.

--

Another option is the squeeze page approach where you build a solid newsletter list. This can be made even larger by using software like Mike Filsaime's viralfriendgenerator.com.

Hope this answers your question,

regards,
Mark

p.s. for the date script, you can search google. There are lots of php/java scripts etc eg http://www.javascriptkit.com/script/cut165.shtml and http://www.hotscripts.com/Detailed/52011.html
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rudolf
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Hi Mark,

thanks a LOT for you reply, that seemed to clear up a LOT. As if the sun came shining through.

I think I'm beginning to like those "review" sites. I feel that I no longer have to make up some things, because review sites are made from your own perspective, which is a lot more ethical. Additionally, you are allowing other products to compete which adds a lot of credibility instead of boasting about that ONE super product.

But can I sign up to multiple affiliates and review them all on one site? Whoever gets listed last, won't he get angry or perhaps force me to put him first or otherwise he will cancel my account for example? Or do they not care, as long as I get sales for them? You'd think the product owner will know of what quality his product is or how its positioned in that market, right?

One thing I still wonder about is, do I write a review site as if I am an individual or a group of people, perhaps an organisation or something? What is more credible, profitable and ethical at the same time?
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sean06
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As long as you don't write anything defamatory, then the product owner shouldn't get angry.

I usually pick out a few of the best products and just list why the first one is the one to buy. Perhaps different products will suit different people, it's your job to make that clear to the potential customer.

As for saying you're an individual or company, I think both can work. But personally prefer to just come across as someone who is just like the visitor. Someone with the same needs and problems, who had them solved by product X.

I also like using cartoon characters as the people who are reviewing things. There is no right or wrong way to go about all this. Try something, if it works, good, if not, try something else.
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rudolf
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Thanks for your reply Sean. Your advice seems to make so much sense.

I can't wait to get started. What other tips do you have for me, such as using cartoon characters? I'd like to make the best start possible. Are there special lessons that give you tips about making reviews sites?

Thanks a lot.

Greetings, Rudolf
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sean06
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The best advice I can give you is just to start doing stuff. You could spend months studying up on this stuff, talk to a ton of experts about it, but at the end of the day, you wouldn't have learned all that much.

Just by having a go, you will be amazed at how much you learn. If you are just a broke student (As I was), I don't recommend using PPC at the start. It's very easy to burn through cash this way.

I would personally recommend you start off creating a great content site and use SEO to get your traffic. It doesn't cost much to start off and you will learn along the way.
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rudolf
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Hi Sean,

ok then, but, isn't SEO going to take a LOT of time.. like, a year before I get serious results? What about the 90-days Roadmap? Perhaps we can gather 200 euros for ppc, but would that be enough? One last off-topic here; should I mention the reason to the visitor for putting up a review site?

Thanks,

Greetings, Rudolf
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chatyak86
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Rudolf wrote:Hi Sean,

ok then, but, isn't SEO going to take a LOT of time.. like, a year before I get serious results? What about the 90-days Roadmap? Perhaps we can gather 200 euros for ppc, but would that be enough? One last off-topic here; should I mention the reason to the visitor for putting up a review site?

Thanks,

Greetings, Rudolf


The 90-day roadmap is a set structure plan to get you on the ball and rolling with your website. Yes it is going to take longer than 3 months to see rankings for your work but in the end it pays off. I think to set up a successful campaign for PPC you need a bit more than 200 bucks. It will take some cash to see which words work best for you etc... all the tweaks to your landing page and so on. $200 can go a lot further with SEO work, in the start.
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rudolf
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So, what kind of budget do you think I would need? And, how much time would a SEO campaign take? Any number will do, even though its an average. Just so that I can make a sensible decision.
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chatyak86
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Rudolf wrote:So, what kind of budget do you think I would need? And, how much time would a SEO campaign take? Any number will do, even though its an average. Just so that I can make a sensible decision.


Web Hosting - $100 a year
Domain Name - $8 a year
Link Exchanges $20/ish a month
Article Writing - $10 bucks
-----------------------------
Ranking? - Priceless


For everything else......... there's PPC.

But seriously.... you will build your site... get it all in good shape, then the ranking time can take anywhere between 4 - 8 months depending on how huge the market is. You only need hosting and a site to start with... that's pretty much it for a few months until you wish to submit your site to a few paid direcotories and stuff.
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