In today’s Marketing Speak episode, Laura Sprinkle joins me to discuss how to develop and execute a successful affiliate marketing strategy.
Laura is a renowned affiliate partnerships strategist working in particular with digital course creators. Her strategies have helped everyone from seven-figure industry leaders to budding entrepreneurs garner more than $30 million in partner revenues.
In this conversation, Laura shares her four-part system — Attract, Activate, Amplify, and Appreciate — that virtually ensures success when conducting a launch. She also provided some great real-life examples of successful partnerships, step-by-step instructions on how to find and recruit the right partners, and what makes an affiliate offer so irresistible it’s hard for anyone to say no.
Laura offers her amazing training called Rock Your Affiliate Program only twice a year, and guess what, enrollment is now open. Sign up through my affiliate link at bit.ly/ryap.
And now, without further ado, on with the show!
In This Episode
- [00:20] – Laura Sprinkle, an affiliate partnerships strategist, working with digital course creators, joins Stephan to discuss strategies for forming successful partnerships, finding the right partners, and making a compelling affiliate offer.
- [02:02] – Laura explains what she does for marketers and how she contributes to their launches.
- [05:07] – What’s the first step of Laura’s four-part system?
- [13:37] – Stephan asks Laura how the activate and amplification stage works in her four-part system.
- [16:27] – What outstanding prizes Laura’s clients gave away during a competition?
- [20:57] – Laura discusses the last part of her four-part system, mentioning some ‘thank you’ campaigns that stood out.
- [24:21] – Stephan wants to know the difference between having VAs and having an official affiliate manager.
- [27:06] – How does a Joint Venture (JV) partner differ from an affiliate?
- [28:47] – Laura explains the benefits and advantages of joining her Rock Your Affiliate Program.
- [37:52] – What important actions can you take to start your business?
- [42:50] – Stephan shares his take on the power of a ‘dream list.’
- [48:38] – Interested in joining Laura’s Rock Your Affiliate program? Visit her website and Instagram, or sign up through this affiliate link: bit.ly/ryap.
Laura, it’s so great to have you on the show.
Thank you so much for having me, Stephan. I am excited to be here.
I learned about you by participating as an affiliate on a few of your clients’ launches, for example, Chris Winfield and Selena Soo. So let’s start with what makes you such a pivotal part of big internet marketers’ launches, like those folks I just mentioned. And what sort of value add do you bring?
Oh, well, thank you for that question. I would like to think that I am a pivotal part. And really, the pivotal part that comes from working with me is the setup of a whole new channel; as you mentioned, you’re participating as an affiliate for those clients of mine. I believe that they were guests on your podcast, and you were able to promote either their free or paid offers. So setting up an affiliate program for them is a way to reach way more people than they could individually. So we’ve brought in millions of dollars for our clients through partner revenue. So huge value add.
Working with me, we just placed so much emphasis on people that I think that is where our clients love working with us. Because it is values-based. It’s not just how many partners we can get. But it’s also how deeply we can work with each partner. And how much we can support each partner. From there, I’m sure you know, we’ve all said yes to being an affiliate for things and then not promoted. And our specialty is working with people after they’ve said yes.
There are many different ways of doing partnerships. Our specialty is in launches – getting multiple partners to promote you at one time, multiple affiliate partners.
Got it. So, what would working with you look like? Do you bring a whole bunch of templates for email, swipe files, and that sort of stuff? Do you come up with a whole set of standard operating procedures for doing a launch or a campaign? How do you add value in that way?
So we look from A to Z, creating a whole affiliate channel. So the very first thing is, what are your goals? What are your promotional plans? Then, the stress test, a little bit of like, is this still gonna work when you add on a bunch of traffic? Like if your offer is not scalable – that’s an issue if we’re going to add a bunch of traffic into your funnel.
So first, it’s looking at the funnel. What are your goals? Stressing that. Then, we’re looking from A to Z. How do we attract the right partners? Who makes good partners for you? We do have templates, standard operating procedures, strategies, and ideas. There are so many different ways of doing partnerships. Our specialty is in launches – so open and close current periods and getting multiple partners to promote you at one time, multiple affiliate partners.
From when they say, how do you activate them to the goal end? What assets to create? How to do training and strategy sessions? Then during the promotion, how to track leads, how to follow up with people, how to do contest prizes, and how to make payouts. So it’s A to Z. Our system attracts, activates, amplifies, and appreciates. And when you do those while they all feed each other, it becomes this cycle that you can reuse.
All right, well, can we go through each of those steps?
Let’s do it.
Attract, as I was saying, it’s finding the right fit partners. Let’s use you as an example if you don’t mind. Let’s dig in here. Who are your ideal clients?
Seven- to nine-figure businesses making a difference in the world and having a positive impact. And they want to get higher rankings in Google. Some even have a kind of household name sort of status to them. But I’m not so concerned about that anymore. That was more ego thing that I wanted earlier on. So I just want those folks making a difference in the world. And they need to be able to afford me. So a seven-figure minimum kind of revenue. And it’s sometimes the business owner, but it’s the marketing manager, marketing director, or VP.
Amazing. So when we’re looking at who would be on your “dream list” of potential partners and affiliates- and this can work both ways- this could also help you identify jobs or identify other revenue streams for yourself. Of course, they would make good, like you could promote their offers too. But even if you don’t, it’s a great exercise to go through. So we call them the relationship Rios.
First, we’d have you list all your alumni, past clients, and the people closest to you because they’re in your inner ring and circle. Then, all of your colleagues and we say, don’t even try to edit yourself. It’s like, you can either be writing or editing; you can’t do both. So it’s just a brain dump of everybody in your industry.
And then the next area is who else is serving your ideal client? So who else is serving the seven- to nine-figure business owners in a complimentary way? So what have they bought before they work with you? For example, I teach people affiliate programs; people need a course or a membership. So people who help create those are great partners for me. So what do they need before working with you? What do they need simultaneously? What do they need after? Does that spring any ideas for categories of businesses that would work for you?
Yeah, so a web development and web design partner, for example, Greg Merrilees, StudioOne Design, is somebody I refer many clients to, and he also refers clients to me. So that would be a good example. Further downstream, let’s say that they’ve already got their website up for a while, and they’re doing a paid search or paid social, so a partner who’s doing paid media for a client, and then that client also needs SEO services. The paid media agency doesn’t offer that. So those would be a couple of examples off the top of my head.
Yeah, I love that. And so we work through all those categories with clients, and then from there, it’s so leverageable. If you spend even a 10th of the time that you’re spending trying to find new clients and trying to connect with new partners, you’re going to be able to reach so many more new clients and so many more new customers because you’ll be able to tap into their audiences.
Attraction is coming up with wisdom and creating genuine relationships.
You can look for conferences where you’ll meet those types of people rather than spending 100% of your marketing efforts trying to meet your customers where they’re at. It opens up a whole new world if you can meet your partners where you’re at. So, that’s everything, but a big part of the attraction is coming up with that wisdom, and creating genuine relationships, I would say, is a huge part of it.
And then once they’ve said, “Yes.” So I’ll just ask you, have you ever signed up to be an affiliate for something? And then life got in the way, or whatever, and you didn’t promote?
Totally. And it’s not because you’re a bad person. You’re a great human being. And so many times, you know, people will come to me that have set up, you know, they’re like, “I’ve created the links, people have signed up, and no one is sharing.” So they think they’re pissed off at the people, or they’re mad at themselves, and it’s like, people are just busy. And so you need to make it easy for them to share.
Also, we only expect our numbers when we say something like “yes, we hit it.” We did a great job when 70% of the people who said yes, were actually promoted, and I don’t even mean to get leads and sales. I mean, share anything. So we’re looking at 70%. Sometimes we can get higher, which is amazing. Especially when we have a smaller pool of affiliates, it just puts everyone’s mind at ease, as not everyone will share. It’s not because they’re jerks. It’s because they’re busy, and things come up.
So you can create, you know, email templates, swipes, graphics, just any place where you would want someone to share and create something to make that easier, send them an email with the copy directly in that email with the links handed to them on a silver platter. Because they have their businesses to run, they have their own lives. And so making it super easy, and training them on exactly what you want them to do, what you want them to say. Even really smart marketers. Like when it comes to their marketing, I think we can all use some strategic support.
Yeah, one thing I liked that you guys did with Chris Winfield was you had a virtual conference exclusive for partners only; you had to sign up as a partner to attend this event. And I don’t think you could; there didn’t seem to be an option at least to pay to attend. So it was free, but only for partners. That was clever. Is that something that’s from your playbook?
Yeah, we love giving generous aid support. And this was for everyone listening like this was before the promotion even this was like, I don’t know, maybe a week or two before anybody started promoting. And we love giving generously first to partners and giving them if they haven’t had a ton of experience like you knew Chris and Jen, like you knew their stuff and style. And not all of our partners did necessarily know how generous they are and their philosophies around getting media.
So it was a way to showcase their process, offers, and kind of an experience of what the mastermind is like because they bring in their high-level friends, colleagues, and clients into the masterminds. So we were giving our partners an experience of the offer so they could promote it more authentically and get more excited about it.I place so much emphasis on people; that's why my clients love working with me. Click To Tweet
Yeah, I remember one of the guest presenters was Neil Patel. And I think Todd Herman was another one who grilled a list of speakers for that virtual conference.
Oh, so good. I was on the edge of my seat with Jonathan Fields. I’m like, “Say more words.”
He’s an amazing man. I’ve had him on my other podcast talking about things like mindfulness. And we talked about hero’s journey, Joseph Campbell, and his tinnitus– the ringing in his ears that almost made him commit suicide. But then that became the impetus for him to go into mindfulness meditation. It changed his life. So he wouldn’t have changed that for the world to go through that, he still has tinnitus, as far as I know. But it’s manageable because of his mindfulness meditation practices.
Wow. I didn’t even know. I just learned what that event is. My friends were talking about some of them having it. That’s a powerful story. I’m gonna listen to that episode.
Yeah, that’s good. What else goes into the activate stage? If anything? And if that’s a pretty good synopsis, we can move on to amplify.
To make it explicit, when I talk about the strategy, we offer to hop on one-on-one or small group calls with partners to map out their plans and help customize things. People tend to shy away from partners or affiliates who have never been promoted. And that’s some of my favorite people to work with. They get so excited about the offer and might just need some help with the marketing. So that’s activation. So it’s everything between the yes. And the actual promo start date is that period.
People tend to shy away from partners or affiliates who have never been promoted. And that’s some of my favorite people to work with.
And then the next is amplification. This is where we see people who have affiliate programs drop off right there like I’ve given them the links, I’ve given them the swipe, fly free. And they’re also doing their launch because you are double launching when you are doing your promo at the same time as an affiliate promo. So this is where if you have a dozen or more affiliate partners, you want a VA, some support, or an affiliate manager helping you.
And during amplification, we’re looking at the numbers every single day. What’s coming in? Who can we celebrate? You know, we get on their email lists, we follow them on social media, who can we celebrate? Who needs a nudge? Who needs support? We love to do leaderboards and have a friendly competition. We have contests and prizes and a Facebook group. And just lots of communication.
And checking in on things like do we need to pivot. I think people, I don’t know if you find this, Stephan, but some of my clients, if they’re experienced in launches and need to pivot during the launch, feel like, oh, well, nobody else needs to pivot. And everybody, like nine-figure businesses, needs to pivot a lot like they’re looking at the numbers. Do you find that too?
Yeah. If something’s not working, tweak it a little bit.
Stop doing the same thing over again.
Yeah. Exactly. So it’s just a lot of showing up for people and being that sounding board and cheerleader. One piece of advice, whether you’re doing an affiliate launch or not, because I’ve said this and every single debrief I’ve ever had. It just takes time to test your tech. Just do it. Take the time and test it in multiple ways because that’ll save you a lot of heartaches.
Yeah. You mentioned competitions as a great way to motivate the participant partners. What would be some examples of outstanding prizes that your clients have given away?
Yeah. So many cool things. One thing that surprised me is that people sometimes will do more or take more quick action to win Starbucks than for a bunch of cash. It’s a funny phenomenon. So I will just say it doesn’t have to be extravagant prizes. But I mean, some of our clients have given away $100,000 or more. So you don’t have to do extravagant cash prizes. Selena, our mutual friend, had a coveted prize at a certain sale number; I believe it was ten sales. You were invited to a mastermind and to loom as a private mastermind. And so everybody wanted to win. And I was able to go a couple of times. And it was incredible.Look for ways to give generously now because you want to build relationships as soon as possible. Click To Tweet
And so I think anything in person was put on pause or was a little more difficult in the last couple of years. But anything in person, anything behind the scenes, people enjoyed. Todd Herman did for his book launch; I think the top winner got to have lunch with him. A time with you or the visionaries is coveted as well. And this was not an affiliate prize. But this was a bonus for Todd’s launch that Matthew Kimberley gave because I don’t know if you know math or capillary. He’s amazing. And he talks a lot about whiskey. And so when he came up with a bonus, he would send buyers a bottle of his favorite whiskey, which was unique and fun.
Yeah, okay, cool. I know Matthew from Taki Moore‘s Blackbelt Mastermind that I was in. He’s hilarious.
Yeah, he is.
So what’s the difference between prizes and bonuses?
People love voyeurism, anything behind the scenes of what you’re promoting.
Yeah, so in my head, I try to speak about them as you talk about them differently. But for me, prizes are what your affiliate partners can win. So whether it’s because of the leaderboard, they’ve made the most sales, they’re in the top 10, or they’ve hit a certain sales number. So that’s prizes.
And then, bonuses are things that your affiliates offer their audience when they purchase through their affiliate link. So, like you could have said to your audience during Chris and John’s launch, hey, if you buy through my link, I’m going to give you whatever thing like a course or time with you or a bottle of whiskey, or whatever. So that is a bonus. So we help affiliates come up with good bonuses. And then prizes are like you could have won a prize in that launch.
What’s an example of a bonus that was performed? Well, for one of your clients.
Yeah, so we’ve had affiliates do well with bonuses related to their time. So one-on-one calls, you must be careful with that and put some limits if you’re nervous. Although we’ve had people do one-on-one calls, I think they may have regretted that and never done that again. But it did work at the time. So one-on-one things, people love voyeurism, so anything behind the scenes of what you’re promoting.
Let’s use Chris and John’s promo as an example. You know, that was all about getting media attention. So if you said as a bonus, I will walk you through and give you the scripts of exactly how I got featured in Forbes on this incredible podcast, like anything behind the scenes and anything in person. If you have an awesome course that people want and that can work well, too. But I would say the most coveted are in-person experiences—time with you, one-on-one, or in a group. And then anything behind the scenes.
Okay, awesome, thank you. We have to attract, activate, and amplify. What’s next?
Appreciate everything that happens after the cart closes.
And next comes to appreciate. I always say that this is my favorite part. But really, I say a lot about all of them. But appreciate everything that happens after the cart closes. So it’s how to make payouts, and you would be shocked. Or maybe you wouldn’t because you’re in this world. But you’d be shocked at how often things can go awry when making payouts on time. So you want to ensure that you promptly get those ducks in order.
But so payouts delivering those prizes that the affiliates one, helping them, you know, understand who to deliver their bonuses to:
- Running a retro or a debrief.
- Sending a thank you campaign.
- Preparing for the next launch.
Because ideally, an affiliate program is not a one-and-done thing, that will not be the most effective. It’s like all the work you put in to set it up. But, you know, now you want to keep the momentum going for future promotions.
So will your client stand out from all their partners who participated? What are some thank you campaigns that have stood out in your mind?
I think I’m going to go back to the Selena example here. And the fact that she had that Partner Mastermind in Tulum. And so her launch of Impacting Millions was always in March. And her Liam’s Retreat was in December, it was this great, you know, it’s not exactly in the middle, but it was this great touch point kind of midway through between promotions.
At Tulum, she hired a videographer and a photographer. And so the participants that had one could film videos with her, take pictures with her, and get ready for the next launch. So it did create this beautiful, cyclical aspect, plus people got excited, “Oh, I want to come back, and I want to win this again. How can I strategize for hitting this goal the next time?”
So that was probably the most epic example of the cyclical nature of what you can create. And I think even sending little gifts or thank yous to people who haven’t made sales is super appropriate and awesome. All the work they did, if you’ve ever done an affiliate promotion, and you haven’t made sales, and then you didn’t promote them again. I would encourage you to revisit that because you planted so many seeds. You may not be able to harvest until further down the line, just like people aren’t always ready to buy right away. And so you want to be there for the next promotion when they are.
Yeah. Are you working with Selena on different initiatives other than the main launch in March?
So I am not working as an affiliate manager anymore. So I ended up training her affiliate management team, and they took it over. So that’s what I’ve done for many of our clients. I ran one of her launches for Amy Porterfield and then trained Allison. And Allison is incredible. And she has been her affiliate manager for the past few years. And so same with Selena. So really, as we come in, we whoops. So when we come in, we set everything up, and we train somebody on the team, and they have an in-house person that can take it from there.The most beautiful and hardest part of being human is dealing with other humans. Click To Tweet
Gotcha. What’s the difference between using VAs for follow-ups with partners and prodding them to post stuff? And having an official affiliate manager? Is there a difference?
Yes. And I think if there’s, how do I put this, there’s less of a difference in the way that is the thing that they call themselves. And there’s more of a difference in how they show up. So you could have a VA acting like a better affiliate manager than somebody calling themselves an affiliate manager. And you could have an affiliate manager acting more like a VA.
But I would say that the thing you want in somebody representing your brand, to influential, important relationships in your life, your affiliate partners are helping you make sales like it’s super duper important. So they need to be able to pivot and think on their feet well. We’ve had so many affiliates come and say, “You know, oh, something came up,” or “I’m doing this other launch at the same time,” or, “Well, my audience isn’t exactly aligned,” or whatever it is. And so you want somebody strategizing with them, who can see any gaps and those objections around because you’re promoting something else.
If there’s a slight overlap and dates don’t mean that you need to scrap the whole thing, like, “let’s create a plan that does work for you.” Or “Oh, the audience isn’t exactly aligned. Can we create a segment?” So you need somebody who understands promotions, strategizes, and isn’t afraid of nudging people politely. So if someone on your team is supposed to be running the affiliate program, they’re like, “I’m afraid of talking to people.” That’s not a great fit.
You need somebody who understands promotions, strategizes, and isn’t afraid of nudging people politely.
They also need a little customer service background because things come up. When you’re dealing with humans, it’s like, in relationships. The hardest part of being human is dealing with other humans, and the most beautiful, so you need somebody that can have those hard conversations. And also has the time because it does take, it does take time.
Yeah, so would be the difference in your mind, between an affiliate, which we’ve been talking about through this whole conversation, or calling them a partner, and a JV or joint venture, because those terms seem to be thrown around interchangeably in the industry, and I think they’re different. So I’d love to hear your take on that.
Yeah, I agree. I hear them being used all the time interchangeably. And to me, they are quite different. An affiliate is somebody who promotes your program during your promotional period. And this could be if you have an evergreen offer, they’re promoting you. So you could have, you know, 10, 100, 1000. We’ve seen all those affiliates promoting the same webinar. At the same time, for example, you’re hosting the webinar, and all the people are sending, you know, traffic to that same webinar. So there’s just an example. So that would be an affiliate.
Whereas a joint venture partner or a JV is a one-off promotion between you and somebody else simultaneously. So, both of you are on the webinar, even if it’s one offer being sold at the back, or sometimes I think, like, originally, JV probably came for me like you are co-promoting something. This offer is both of ours. And so we’re both getting the leads from it. And we’re both getting a split of the revenue. And I think that’s kind of gotten muddy along the way. What do you think as well?
Sounds good. All right. So you have a program, a training called Rock Your Affiliate Program? Is that for the business owner? Or is that for the affiliate manager – somebody might want to have trained up? How to implement your processes or framework? Or both? Yeah, tell us more about this Rock Your Affiliate Program.
Yeah, I’d love to, thank you. This is for both. So when people join Rock Your Affiliate Program, it is for the whole company. The CEO, the team, and anybody working on the affiliate program can come in simultaneously and work with us. It is a done-with-you process. We also have more individual higher-level options for people where we come in, and we set everything up and train your team members on exactly how to run the system and run with that process and be able to continue.
The Director Affiliate Program of your company, comes to us. You’re in a cohort with other companies going through it. And we love it when the point person, potential affiliate manager or VA, that’s going to become the affiliate manager comes in with you. And when it comes to attraction and creating those partnerships. If Amazon is creating an important collaboration, like Jeff Bezos is in that room. We want you, as the company’s CEO, to understand how to build those relationships and create those partnerships. So that’s super important for the CEO.
But other than that, we love having people on the team to take off- to take care of. Like all the admin, and set up all the templates and all that such. So it’s for both parties to come in. And we have had people that don’t have teams yet go in there, and they’re just looking to do an affiliate program on a smaller scale. But again, once you get to like 10, a dozen or more affiliates, then you do want to be able to come in and help.
Awesome. So we didn’t talk about this before, but before the recording, I think I’ll sign up to be an affiliate for Rock Your Affiliate Program.
Sounds good. Well, thank you. Yeah, that would be amazing.
So that’s the thing when you have a podcast guest on your show, and you don’t plan that out in advance, you might miss an opportunity to participate in their affiliate program. But, on the other hand, you’re promoting that guest as part of your podcast; why not? So double dip, take an opportunity to promote their program if you think it’s good and then make some extra cash.
If you’re listening to this now, think, “Wow, that sounds like a good program. Laura sounds like she knows her stuff.” And you’d like to learn from her. So, I encourage you to sign up for her Rock Your Affiliate Program online training. Okay. So, enough of the commercial now. Is there something after appreciation? We have to attract, activate, amplify, and appreciate.
Give generously and see where you can add value to other business owners, potential partners, businesses, and lives.
There’s not. It just goes right back through. We have them set up in a circular fashion with those four. The other thing I like to say is if you’re having trouble attracting a partner, take a step back and go into appreciation. Give generously and see where you can add value to other business owners, potential partners, businesses, and lives. And not in a tit-for-tat like, “oh, because I said something about you because I commented on your post, you have to promote me,” but everything is energy. And the more I put out, the more I get back. Yeah, so it goes right back into attraction.
Yeah, everything is energy. I love that. And it is so true. Even matter is energy; it’s slowed down, massively slowed down. I want to share something I learned from Brendon Burchard that I think you might resonate with; it’s in the ‘appreciate’ category. He pulled off his first book launch, which is Life’s Golden Ticket. He explained that he was finding nonprofits to partner with corporate sponsors, that he also brought in a corporate sponsor, would bankroll, bulk buy copies of his book, and pay for all the shipping.
The books would then get shipped to all of their top donors. So let’s say it’s a nonprofit like The Nature Conservancy. And he finds a good corporation compatible with Nature Conservancy’s values and vice versa. So he pairs them up, and Ken introduces them to each other and says, “Hey, I’ve got this great campaign, your donors will get a free copy of my book, and there are no strings attached. But guaranteed you will get more donations because of it.”
You’re just sending them an appreciation for their past donation with a cover letter that mentions that this book and shipping haven’t been covered by your normal budget. So don’t worry about spending our money forever frivolously. XYZ Corporation has paid for this with the corporate sponsors, which goes in the book’s cover letter and package. And I just thought that was brilliant. He sold a lot of coffee that is in his book that way. He just rinsed and repeatedly just found a whole bunch of different nonprofits to do this with.
Oh, my gosh, I love that so much on many different levels. And I think what you said about the like, rinsing and repeating. So often, as entrepreneurs, it’s like we do something that works. And then we have 50 other ideas, and we’re on to the next thing. And it’s like if it already worked, like just what different kinds of people can you think that make it partners like that?
Yeah. So true. So who can you think of that stands out in the marketplace with how they treat their partners and the kinds of launches they do? And they’ve never been a client of yours?
Oh. The first person that popped into my mind was James Wedmore. I didn’t usually support clients in promoting other launches when doing affiliate management. However, I did support Selena when she was an affiliate for James Wedmore and a few other people. And I loved how their team showed up. And they had some epic prizes – I think it was $111,111.11 or something for the top prize, and they made a whole Hawaii mastermind trip. So I’ve heard from partners that they have their stuff together, for sure. And he’s never been a client.
That’s cool. I can’t remember who it is. But somebody did an amazing campaign. Promo promotion and the top affiliate one. It was a Ferrari, a Lamborghini, or a high-end car. Do you know who that might have been?
I do not know. It doesn’t ring a bell. I know, Dean Graziosi. In Tony Robbins launch, they had, like, I think it was the top 10 got to go on a private jet with Tony to an island or something.
That’s a good one.
Which is, you know, that’s an expensive prize. And you know, I think they had a $35 million launch.
Wow, do you have any involvement in that? Or do you know who did it in terms of running that campaign?
So I know that David Gonzalez was part of that. I’m sure more people were involved in the partnership side of things. But David’s been involved in a lot of pretty big launches. We’re talking about B2B and B2B promos. But the other area that is super huge in affiliate things, and in a different way, I would say, is the health space. So there are some pretty cool affiliate partnerships happening in the health space. That’s a lot more like, often, it’s lower priced items, but they’re like selling mass quantities through affiliate partnerships.
Do any examples come to mind?
So I think every, you know, every health summit that you see is like where summits are working well as in the health space. I did have a client that was a chiropractor that did events that used affiliates. Although, I have seen cash prizes too. But you know, every health company, and they all really like it, creates this beautiful structure where, when you win, I win, and they win. And, like, we all win together. And I think, you know, not to get too esoteric with this.
But I think that the web and structure can be powerful and having that network and having everybody rise together. And on the flip side, I would say that something that I don’t like about my industry is sometimes it can be very, like the boys club or you know, all the people that were here first like we’re all supporting each other and so it’s hard to it can be hard to break into that. So I don’t know if you’ve seen that at all.
I haven’t, you know, where it seems to be happening when you go to the Traffic and Conversion Summit, it looks very cliquish there, and very much like a boys club atmosphere. And yeah, I don’t love that aspect of TNC.
Is that your experience of the Traffic and Conversion Summit too?
I’ve never been. I’ve had it on my list several times, but I make much deeper connections at smaller events. It’s funny that this is what I do to connect people and create relationships. And I tend to avoid the larger events and almost anything that says networking, like no thank you. So I’ve made, you know, my own space where I get to go deep with people rather than I wouldn’t say I like feeling like I’m in a room of hungry people looking to make a deal with me.
What masterminds are you in that are amazing?
I’ve been in some incredible masterminds. I’ve been in Todd Herman’s mastermind. I was connected to Selena Soo. She wasn’t the mastermind, but someone in her group connected me to her, which kick-started my entire affiliate career. Kate Northrop‘s mastermind was super duper powerful; that was much more how to do business in a cyclical, feminine way, which I loved. And I’ve been Chris and John’s mastermind as well. The people there have so much heart, and it’s incredible how intimate it feels. Even though hundreds of people are their mastermind, they do a good job.
One that would be good for you is Flight Club.
Are you in that?
I’m not. But intuitively, it feels like that would be a great mastermind for you regarding business generation.Give your partners an experience of your offer so they can promote it authentically and get more excited about it. Click To Tweet
I’ll check it out.
Awesome. So if we could encapsulate a few of the most important next actions for our listeners to take, let’s say that they’re a business owner or in charge of marketing in the organization, what would those things be other than to sign up for your online training? So what would be some next actions?
Amazing. Yes, we would love to have you. And I would say whether or not you’re doing that, and especially if you’re going to be signing up, I would already start to go back to it. I briefly described the relationship rings. But I would start to create that dream list and create more relationships with that – we call ring four, with those categories of business owners that would make good partnerships. I don’t mean to ask them to be a partner right now. I mean, if you already have a relationship, go for it.
I mean, invite them on your podcast or for a coffee chat. See if they are doing a book promo that you can be a part of and support them. Look for ways to give generously now because you want to build those relationships as soon as possible. So that when the time comes when you are doing a promotion, when you do have the infrastructure in place to do an affiliate launch, when you are in the middle of Rock Your Affiliate Program, and you’re going to make your asks in our Attraction Bootcamp that you already have those relationships. I mean, we’ve all been on the receiving end of those cold pitch DMS, like, “Hey, want to collaborate?” And it’s like “trash. No, thank you.”
Yeah, exactly. I hate getting those on LinkedIn. Anytime I see an InMail. I just know some spammy pitches. I love this idea of creating a dream list. I recently did this for our client and created a dream 100 podcast list of podcasts they should get on. And he loved it. It’s a great thing to aspire towards, like having a vision board. But in the spreadsheet.
Yeah. I saw once you know someone with a podcast that, you know, I was just emailing back and forth with them on behalf of a client. And they had their dream list spreadsheet in their email signature, like, “Hey, do you know any of these folks?” And I thought that was so cool.
Oh, that is a great idea. I think that maybe it was Joe Fier.
Yes. I think Joe and Matt. Yes.
Yeah, past guests in this podcast with their Hustle and Flow Chart. That was a smart thing to do because I did introduce them to a couple of people on their dream 100 lists.
Oh, I love that. Right. I mean, people love while people like you and me. We love making connections. And I look through that list to have, like, I don’t even know these folks. And sure, I’ll introduce them. Why not?
Yeah, I introduced people that I did already know. Yeah, that’s a good idea. Like, hey, why not? If somebody pops for you off the screen or something, I’ve shared it before, probably a couple of times. I know my listeners are tired of hearing this.
But I was just so impressed with this story that Vishen Lakhiani told. He’s the founder of Mindvalley. Before founding Mindvalley, he was a salesperson at a law firm software as a service company. Their market was law firms, and Vishen was commission only, so he’d had to dial for dollars all day. And he was not doing that. Well. He was barely making enough money to eat, so he went to the Silva Method seminar, which is all about energy, and you can manifest stuff out of thin air. And he learned the techniques, and then he came back to work.
Instead of calling through A-Z in the phonebook all the law firms in each of the cities that he was assigned, he would only call the ones that he was drawn to, that he felt an intuitive connection to, and his sales doubled, and then they doubled again. And then he became a VP at this company, and of course, he left to found Mindvalley. But what a great story. So imagine having your dream 100 list or somebody else having their dream 100 lists, and you’re perusing and overseeing. Who should I introduce my friend to on their dream 100 lists? And then, instead of just randomly picking, you’re doing it with intention and with that kind of intuitive sense. Magic.
It is. I’ll be talking to somebody, and somebody else’s name will flow in. And I’m in the intro, I’m like, “You know, I don’t know why I’m making this introduction. I know that you need to hop on a call. There’s something magical going to happen here.”
And the ripple effect we make in the world is bigger than we can imagine. And just one introduction, one story anecdote you share, or a piece of wisdom just makes a huge difference. And then that person passes that on to others or continues to spread that impact for you. It’s cool.
It is. That’s probably my favorite thing about relationship-driven marketing. Like all the best things I’ve bought have been recommendations, or like I’ve purchased through many affiliate links, I’m so grateful. We hear we’ll do these, like partner celebrations, to wrap up a launch and let people have a chance to debrief their experience, what went well, and what was unexpected. And almost every time, our affiliates say, “You know, I wasn’t expecting so many people I referred to thank me.”
If you are only sharing for the money, that’s probably not a great partnership.
I think there’s this fear of promoting other people’s offers, or are they going to think I’m only sharing this for the money or whatever. And if you are only sharing it for the money, like probably don’t share it, that’s probably not a great partnership. But you know, people are afraid of selling. And every time the people they’ve shared it with, whether it’s like a free webinar or a paid course, come back to them and thank you so much for sharing that with me. That changed my life. And everybody thought through, like, “this is me saying thank you to you right now you’re listening, like, I’m so appreciative that you share that thing as an affiliate because so many of the things I’ve purchased have transformed my life.”
Awesome. Well, Laura, this was a pleasure. And I know you add a lot of value to your clients. So that’s why you’re on this show now. So thank you for everything you do in the world. And thank you for being on the show.
Thank you so much. It was fun.
If our listener or viewer wants to get in touch with you, how do they find you?
Yeah, so you can go to LauraSprinkle.com. You can also find me on Instagram. It’s imlaurasprinkle.
Awesome. Thanks, Laura. And thank you, listeners. We’ll catch you in the next episode. In the meantime, have a fantastic week and reveal some light in the world.
Facebook – Laura Sprinkle
Instagram – Laura Sprinkle
LinkedIn – Laura Sprinkle
Twitter – Laura Sprinkle
Laura Sprinkle’s Rock Your Affiliate Program
Laura Sprinkle’s ToGather (Virtual Event)
Dialing In Your Online Marketing with Joe Fier and Matt Wolfe – previous episode
Filling Up Your Good Life Buckets with Jonathan Fields – previous episode
13 Minutes Of B2B Marketing Strategies | Gary Vaynerchuk At INBOUND
My Daily Practice derived from the Silva Technique | Vishen Lakhiani
Your Checklist of Actions to Take
- Take note of the four phases of a successful affiliate program: Attract, Activate, Amplify, and Appreciate.
- Create the best offer and share it with the world. Always deliver a massive amount of value in whatever I’m offering. The more I put out there, the more I get back.
- Build trust with my community. The strength of the community lies in the connections that we have with each other. Also, trust builds teamwork and collaboration and empowers ethical decision-making.
- Target the right people who can become trustworthy and relevant affiliate partners. If I market to the wrong people, my offer will fall on deaf ears.
- Focus on the value I can provide. Adding value builds trust with my customers. The more I help them through my knowledge, content and resources, the more they will trust me and the more brand equity I build.
- Evaluate whether my campaigns and offers are scalable. Learn whether my campaigns and offers can perform or not. This will let me know how to proceed with each campaign and offer.
- Test my campaigns and compare which strategies work best for the business. This is the easiest way of knowing my audience and optimizing my marketing efforts.
- Gamify the audience’s experience. Eliminate boredom and spark attention by giving away prizes and bonuses. (Stephan and Laura laid out some examples of bonuses and free offers in the episode.)
- Establish a well-thought-out opening and closing in my presentation. Make sure it’s memorable and compelling for my audience.
- Join Laura Sprinkle’s Rock Your Affiliate Program Training. Also, visit her website to learn more about her and her services.
About Laura Sprinkle
Laura Sprinkle is an affiliate partnerships strategist who specializes in working with digital course creators. Her strategies have helped everyone from seven-figure industry leaders (like Amy Porterfield, Todd Herman, and Selena Soo) to budding entrepreneurs garner more than $30 million in partner revenues. Laura’s expertise has been featured in Forbes and top-rated business podcasts.
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