I’ll be discussing things you need to look at as an affiliate but most of the points apply to a business you own too.
Product or Service
The product or services you associate with must be ‘In Demand‘. There are certain products or services that are always hot and others that peak only at certain times of the year.
The products or services you represent need to be consumable. This means your customer NEEDS to buy on a regular basis and that helps ensure you have an income that doesn’t fluctuate as much with the changes in the economy. Example: web hosting is a consumable service.
The products or services offered MUST be seen as affordable in the eye of the consumer AND the perceived value MUST exceed the cost.
In America, the Cadillac is perceived to be of high quality that has a price many consumers can justify to themselves. The Cadillac owners are often VERY loyal and wouldn’t think of switching brands.
The compensation you receive for your efforts must be easily understood AND explained to others IF you are financially rewarded for bringing in other business opportunity seekers.
Customer service is VITAL in bad times and it is often the deciding factor during good times. If you are an affiliate you MUST associate with companies that provide great customer service or YOUR income AND reputation will be adversely affected.
Great customer service does not end with delivering a quality product at an affordable price. Good communication before during and AFTER the sale.
If you are representing a company that offers physical products, they need to have plans for increasing their product line or you will see your customer base dwindle over time even if you are continuously marketing. Service providers also need to upgrade or expand there services or they too will see a dwindling customer base.
As an affiliate, you NEED a sound marketing plan that has proven its usefulness and value. The company or companies you represent should provide you with quality marketing tools that have been tested AND these tools need to be updated on a regular basis so your advertising message doesn’t look stale or obsolete.
You should only become an affiliate for a company that values the services you provide them. Their growth and sometimes even their survival depends on the number and quality of their affiliates so providing you the training, support and respect you deserve is something worth considering BEFORE joining with them.
Is the company you are thinking about representing well established? Are they recognized as a quality company that consistently takes good care of their customers and affiliates? How good is the management team?
If even one of the points mentioned above is weak, your business may suffer during bad times and maybe even during good times. Business owners reading this need to evaluate their businesses to see where they are weak and how they can strengthen those weak points to become more stable during tough times and much more prosperous during good times.
Shaklee is one business that I consider to be a great example of quality in every aspect of their business.
Making money in tough times is simply a matter of having the right business plan, being associated with the right company and offering high quality consumable products that are in high demand.
If you consistently market your wares and listen to your customers, you will be positioned for continued growth regardless of the economic environment.
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