In this episode, Dave is excited to welcome Priest Willis. Priest is the founder of Affiliate Mission, a premier, award winning affiliate marketing and management agency. Affiliate Mission helps businesses ensure that their product or service is prominently featured on as many high quality, high traffic websites, and social sites like Facebook and Youtube, as possible. In short they help businesses find and get new customers easier and faster with strong, relevant content.
Priest and his team work with clients all of the world and managed everything from start to finish, effectively allowing clients to outsource their business or side hustle to work 24 hours a day for them.
It was this ability and the fact that Priest gives a portion of every dollar that the company makes to charity that intrigued Dave about having him on
Connect with Priest on Twitter: @priestwillis
Email Priest: firstname.lastname@example.org
Priest started in 1996 when he built his first computer with his father. In doing this, he found a passion for technology. He got so advanced at building computers, he started a business selling them. It began to grow, but as Priest says, it started to outgrow himself. He wasn’t prepared, did not have enough help, and ultimately started to have anxiety issues. He did all this while holding down a job so he could make sure he supported his young family.
He knew he needed to find a better business and business model to fit his life. He started building websites, but found it too labor intensive.
He wanted to find a business where he did not have to have a physical product and work with other businesses to help them grow. That is how he got into the affiliate business starting in 2004 with Amazon and some others.
Priest coins a term, “Horizontal Money" – The ability to make money while you are laying down and sleeping
From that point, Priest has built the affiliate business into Affiliate Mission, an award winning affiliate marketing firm.
Priest talks about forced unplugging to overcome anxiety. He forces himself to tune out and take breaks. He also makes sure to find ways to delegate and find help where he needs it and have the right team in place.
At the 7:45 mark, Priest explains affiliate marketing and how it works. He talks about how to do it, the types of players in the affiliate game and how you can work with them.
Priest offers advice for affiliates. He says that affiliates get excited about an idea and run after it, they create all these domains to sell through, but then if the idea or success rate begins to fade, they let it go and don’t stay on it. He says focus on your passion and work with merchants that closely align to what you love and what you blog about or share on social media. You won’t fall into the trap of chasing the latest fad or idea and be able to be consistent. Successful affiliates are typically doing something inline with their passions.
Priest gives advice for merchants. He says it is best to understand what an affiliate is looking for. One of the biggest mistakes merchants make is not connecting with and understanding their affiliates. The affiliate is their customer or an extended marketing team and they need to treat them like one. Affiliates are at the front of the line and merchants need to communicate and stay in tune with them.
At the 16:00 mark, Priest talks about how to get started for beginners in affiliate marketing. He especially gives advice on if you have an informational product like an e-book or program (digital asset).
At the 19:30 mark, Priest gives advice to people that are more established and have a blog or larger social media following. (influencers).
Priest talks a lot about how you always need to be innovative and be you. Find your voice and your message. No matter how many people you have in your database, if you are consistent and authentic, it will grow over time. Don’t copy others and try to be like them.
Priest says that right now, one of the hottest things out there are subscription boxes like Blue Apron, Birchbox, and others. If you have a passion for one of these products and actively talk about it, consider becoming an affiliate and sharing your story of using the product.
At the 28:00 mark, Priest talks about how to use Google Alerts and Correlate to see what content is lifting up and gaining traction. That is how affiliates stay up on what is hot and people are interested in. If you are passionate about it, then you can buy a domain that fits it and create Amazing links, etc. and get some traction. He goes on to give other examples of how you can create a business without owning anything and just have a website with a passion.
At the 32:00 mark, Priest talks about how to balance paying commissions if you offer a product to affiliates. Hi advice – give what’s fair, don’t be tricky. Make sure you understand your costs and what you can actually giveaway. Think of a long term approach to your business and look at what other competitors are offering and find the balance.
The future of affiliate marketing? Influencers have definitely become much bigger than expected. Right now, Priest says “Omni-channel” is the future which is really using intelligence to find out where someone really came to them from (online to store or store to online). It is predictive analytics. Priest mentions an example of coupon codes on Impact Radius (www.impactradius.com)
Best Quote: "Knowing who you aren’t helps you to know who you are"
Priest's Misfit 3