Thursday, July 26, 2007

Part 2: Value Added to CJ Value Add

I got a call late in the day yesterday from Kristina Vallen at CJ. I should mention up front that this doesn't surprise me. Kristina has always been very good at making sure my questions/concerns are answered, and is a bright spot in the ranks of Commission Junction.

Kristina wanted to clarify some misinformation regarding my post yesterday concerning CJ's "New Value Added Service Launch". I wrote yesterday that The Keys to the CJ Marketplace Training Program was separated into 5 seminars, each costing $150.00. Kristina called to tell me that every CJ Advertiser and future Advertiser is entitled to one FREE seat (a $750 value) for the program. NOW THAT'S WHAT I'M TALKIN' ABOUT!

But how could I have missed that? How could I have led the Affiliate Marketing industry astray? Well... it appears as though the last paragraph from the announcement on the Blair.com CJ Merchant homepage is gone, and has been replaced by this:

Each Commission Junction advertiser is being provided one complimentary seat for all five seminars. Please see your Account Manager or submit a request through Ask A Question for instructions on how to register for this exciting new service at no cost. Click here to learn more about the Keys to the CJ Marketplace training program and unlock the power of Commission Junction’s network!

I know I didn't miss this information yesterday, because I copied and pasted the announcement straight from my CJ page. Whether or not this was a simple omission or a change on CJ's part doesn't matter. CJ has stepped up to the plate and is offering their Advertisers what looks to be a huge benefit!

I'm off to check my calendar for some open spots and will look to take advantage of this great offer from Commission Junction!

Thanks for setting me straight, Kristina!

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

New "Value-Added" Service Launch by CJ (Note the Quotes!)

Here's the release I found on my Account Manager homepage:

New Value-Added Service Launch!

We are excited to announce a new value-added service for CJ Access™ and CJ Vantage™ advertisers:
The Keys to the CJ Marketplace Training Program.

The training program consists of five interactive Web-conference seminars that center on the CJ Account Manager™. Having an intimate knowledge of the unique features available in our user interface helps you become a more engaged participant in the day-to-day management as well as the long-term evolution and success of your programs.


Commission Junction is dedicated to helping our advertisers succeed. Drawing on our extensive experience and our internal publisher development team, we have developed this training program to offer the information and strategies you need to be successful and competitive in the online marketing industry.

I've always wondered whether I was getting everything out of the CJ interface that I should be, so this news really got me excited! I could go through the seminars, and even if I gained a tiny bit of knowledge that had eluded me in the past, it would be a benefit to me, Blair.com affiliates and Commmission Junction as well!

So... I clicked on the link to learn more and "unlock the power" (CJ's words). The next page made claims like "
help you make the most of your affiliate marketing program and your diverse publisher base" and "these seminars offer the information and strategies to be successful and competitive in the online marketing industry", along with these bulleted highlights:
  • Understand the full capabilities of the CJ Account ManagerTM interface
  • Learn affiliate program management 'best practices'
  • Ensure that the time you dedicate to working with your program is spent wisely
  • Attract the right publishers for your program
  • Help your publishers better promote your products and/or services
  • Ramp your program faster and more efficiently
My first thought was to start looking for empty spots on my calendar! This was the coolest news I've heard from CJ in years, and Blair.com has had an affiliate program for SEVERAL years!

Once I clicked on the links to the individual seminars entitled Administration and Compensation, Publisher Management and Communications, Managing Links, Reporting and Tracking and Payments, my heart sunk.

Commission Junction is charging $150.00 for each seminar! Sign up for all five seminars, and it'll cost you $750 smackaroos!

It amazes me that CJ would charge to help make me a better affiliate manager. If I learn something that helps me to manage the Blair.com Affiliate Program better, it directly affects CJ to the tune of 30% of each new payment Blair.com makes to affiliates.

It looks like I'm gonna have to pass up this wonderful opportunity CJ is offering. I'm really not sure who is going to pay $750.00, but would be interested in hearing from anyone who has invested in any of the seminars.

Hundreds of New Items Added to Blair.com Clearance!

You read that right! Hundreds! Over 230 new items have been moved to Clearance, to be a bit more exact. And... in addition to these new products, another 85 products have been marked down even further! So, this is the time to send your apparel shoppers to Blair.com!

There's something for everyone in the new Blair Clearance items. There's a Cotton Twill Sportcoat priced at under $40.00... a ladies Sag Harbor Twinset for under $18.00 and Sag Harbor Pants for under $15.00... and lots more womenswear, menswear, home products, jewelry and footwear.

Check out ALL the new Blair.com Clearance items!

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

PopShops.com is a great tool!

OK. So I'm pretty inexperienced at building sites. I've dabbled on the affiliate side of affiliate marketing, but mostly just to have an idea of what it's like to be an affiliate. I figured that would help me to be a better Affiliate Manager. If you haven't heard of PopShops.com, you've got to take a look! PopShops.com is a great tool that let's ANY affiliate from novice to expert add product links to their website(s). There are currently datafeeds available from just under 1000 merchants, and affiliates have access to nearly 18 million products! The Blair.com datafeed from CJ is available through PopShops.com.

I just about typed that the price is the best thing about PopShops.com. The basic subscription is FREE! With added features (unlimited showcases, Embed PHP and ASP), the Pro plan is $5.00 per month, while the Enterprise package adds XML capabilities and multiple affiliate ID's for $30 per month.

So... what's the best thing about PopShops.com? It's got to be how easy it is to use. I could tell you about MY experience, but I figured it would be even better if "Lucas" showed you instead.



Click Here to visit PopShops.com, and let me know what you think!

Monday, July 23, 2007

HOT Product Notice!

I did some checking, and found that very recently, Blair.com shoppers have been purchasing dozens and dozens of this item. I thought Blair Affiliates through Performics and CJ might find this information valuable, and want to add the product to their site(s). Here's the description taken straight from Blair.com:



Going places or just kicking around the house, these sport pants look and feel just right. And our outstanding low price makes them your best buy! Casual, yet flattering style with streamlined side stripes. Ultra-comfortable with a multi-stitched elastic waist. Handy side-seam pockets. Inseams: Petites 28"; Average 29½". Smooth cotton/polyester knit guarantees a neat appearance without cling. Machine wash/dry. Imported.

Petites: PS(8-10), PM(12-14), PL(16-18), PXL(18W-20W), P2XL(22W-24W)
Misses: S(8-10), M(12-14), L(16-18), XL(18W-20W), 2XL(22W-24W), 3XL(26W-28W)

These Sport Pants are available in 5 colors and 10 sizes, and there is still stock in every size/color combination. The best part is that these Ladies Sport Pants were recently moved to our Clearance Department, so they've been discounted to $11.99 for ALL sizes!

And... once Blair.com shoppers receive their Sport Pants, they're extremely pleased, as evidenced by the great customer reviews. Here's what Snoepie from TX had to say:

"Really comfortable, great price!! I bought these pants to wear on a long road trip so I didn't have to be uncomfortable wearing jeans in the car for 12 hours. These pants were perfect!!"

Once Blair.com Affiliates start promoting this product, I have a feeling the sizes and color combinations will begin to get spotty, so hurry and add this product today!

Monday, July 16, 2007

What are shoppers searching for when they come to Blair.com?

Here's a list of the top natural search terms sending traffic to Blair.com. I thought this information might be helpful to Blair Affiliates from Performics and Commission Junction.

women's clothing catalogs
bendover pants
split skirts
chenille bedspread
clearance bedspreads
casual shirts
stirrup pants
women's apparel
seashell bedding
tankini separates
home decor catalogs
pretty bedspreads
gauze women's clothing
ladies cat watch ?
ely cattleman
banded collar shirt
furniture coverings
mens casual shirts
propet ravine walker shoes
bedsack protectors
men's seersucker shorts
weskit blouse
skirt elastic waist polyester
http: clothing
men's linen suits
denim stretch shorts
durafleece
linen suits
'clearance' men's dress pants
butterfly shower curtains
pettipant
berber carpet tiles
valmont bras
cabana shirts and swimwear
sleeveless mock turtleneck
split skirt
banded collar shirts
kitchen window fashions
furniture throws
joanna blouse
better homes and gardens meredith's garden versa-tie valance
men's dress shoe
gauze tank tops for women
lace priscillas
clothes shopping
sag harbor jackets
women's dressy blouses
4xlt western shirts
area rugs
womans split skirts

Thursday, July 05, 2007

A Shocking Marketing Tactic With Some "Train Wreck" Viral Marketing Thrown In!

One of my friends on MySpace alerted me to this eBay auction. What's being auctioned off? The high bidder gets the opportunity to shoot Ray Sabbatini, a Multiple Sclerosis sufferer, with a taser gun. Yes -- a TASER GUN! Plus, you'll get to star in the video that captures the event, and be able to promote yourself or your company in any way you like. I don't think I'd be able to convince my bosses at Blair.com to allow me to pull the trigger.

Here's what Ray has to say about the auction:

O.K., here it is! Up for auction is the opportunity to help a Great Cause. I am a Multiple Sclerosis sufferer and we are filming a Video Introduction for our New website, www.msextreme.org (under construction now) :)

I am the founder of "Multiple Sclerosis Extreme", a MS organization dedicated to Raising MS Awareness, Empowering other MS Sufferers and helping to find a Cure! Multiple Sclerosis Extreme is willing to do whatever it takes to put MS into the "Spotlight"!

Here's the Concept:

The Video will consist of me welcoming people to the site, explaining what MS Extreme is all about, and then being shot with a Taser Gun. The idea is to show that I am willing to go to Extreme lengths to find a Cure for this debilitating disease!

The winner of this auction, besides pulling the trigger, will be part of our New Revolutionary concept to Raise MS Awareness.

I'll be the first to commend Ray for thinking "out of the box", and for attempting to raise money to find a cure. But... I think it will be interesting to see how many bids he gets. Unfortunately, there is no minimum bid, so there's the possibility that Ray could get tasered for a ridiculously low price. I guess if his main goal is to get eyeballs to the new msextreme website, posting the video on YouTube will probably accomplish that goal.


If Ray is hoping to get thousands of dollars in bids for the opportunity to taser him, I think he might be disappointed unless GoldenCasino.com has a good bit of their marketing budget earmarked for "abusing the handicapped." I've never been a big fan of Jackass, but I know those fans are out there. For some reason, I just don't feel this is right, both morally and marketing-wise.

Oh! I almost forgot. The winning bidder is required to provide his own taser!