GPWA Times Magazine - Issue 33 - October 2015

test out our pages on all types of phones and tablets to make sure they look good. The mobile traffic has increased a great deal; however, we had taken steps way before the aforementioned algorithm. Are you a one-man shop, or are there other people who work on your sites? If so, how many? And what are their roles? We have several people who write for the review sites, but my focus is on manage- ment and trying to capitalize on trends. As far as writers are concerned, we work with around five. We are small affiliates. Describe your work environment. Do you work from home or in an office? If you work from home, how often do you get to see and interact with other people in the industry? We work from a home office and bring our laptops and tablets with us when we go out. We work seven days a week. As far as interacting with other people in the industry, we limit that to forums like the GPWA, where we feel comfortable. What traits do you look for in an affiliate manager? How about in an affiliate pro- gram? Helpful but not pushy. Pointing us in the right direction for top-converting pages, banners and brands. I cannot stand when affiliate managers go for the hard close for top positions. Reputation is im- portant in an affiliate program as well as conversions. Good communication is ex- tremely important to us. What’s your preferred method of com- munication with affiliate managers? We have become friendly with some of the affiliate managers and talk to them on the phone; others we speak to on Skype and e-mail. I prefer to develop a rapport based on trust rather than hard closes for top positions. What prompted you to join the GPWA? How has it helped you? I was research- ing the back links to and found the GPWA that way and have felt at home since. The GPWA has helped us in so many ways, from meeting people in the affiliate marketing business who have been extremely helpful, finding reputable programs to work with, learning SEO and a whole host of other things that have made a huge positive impact. You joined the GPWA a little more than two years ago, and in that time you’ve amassed more than 1,600 posts, nearly two a day. Were you active in forums (of any kind) before joining the GPWA? How important are forums in general in your professional and nonprofessional life? I was not very active on other forums be- fore the GPWA. I just happened to stum- ble upon the GPWA researching back links, and it was everything I was looking for in an affiliate marketing forum. Since then I have also been active on Affiliate Guard Dog, which has been very helpful. What do you like about the indus- try? I like the money and have fun building websites. If you could change one thing about the industry, what would it be and why? If I could change anything, it would be to have more companies be held responsible for the terms and conditions that they understood and agreed upon when the affiliate signed up, without the company having the option to change the terms and conditions as a TOS. There are too many untrustworthy companies out there. What do your family and friends think of your work as an affiliate? They do not understand the business model. Do you gamble online? If so, what do you play? I don’t gamble at all. I don’t find it fun and would prefer to save money rath- er than take a risk. How long do you give yourself to an- swer e-mail? What e-mail tips can you offer? I answer e-mail very promptly, I would say at most one day depending on the urgency but usually right away. One tip I would give other affiliates is to pri- oritize their e-mail and answer it in order of importance. How do you manage your to-do lists? Do you use any special software to help you out? I manage by writing down my to-do list, then writing out what the desired re- sult I want to accomplish, then I write out a mini plan of action for that to-do. A lot of the to-do’s fall into the same category, which saves time. Also this is a great way to prioritize things based on the results a person desires. I do not use any special software, just manage everything by my desired results and do my best to get the results I desire every day. How much time do you devote to SEO and social networking to drive more traffic to your sites? I devote a few hours a day to reading up on the latest SEO and social networking news. I build different sites using different SEO and social strate- gies to experiment. What’s the most difficult thing about running your sites? The most difficult thing is figuring out what companies to put in the top spots of the review sites. It can be tough finding programs that pay affiliate marketing revenues on time and in full that convert well. What’s the best thing about running your sites? The revenue and having the ability to work from wherever we are. What do you do to stay in shape – both physically and mentally? Martial arts. I practice Hapkido and Taekwondo. What’s your favorite vacation spot? Florida. What’s your all-time favorite movie? Back to the Future 2 . If you could invite any five people, liv- ing or dead, to dinner, who would they be? Andrew Carnegie, Henry Ford, Sun Tzu, Niccolò Machiavelli and Arnold Rothstein. 57 GPWA Affiliate Interview Series