“Affiliate of the Year” Award

Affiliate of the Year AwardAs most of my family and friends know, I have been involved in affiliate marketing for almost 10 years now. For those who don’t know what affiliate marketing is, affiliate marketing essentially means I help other companies sell their products and/or services online in exchange for a commission or “finders fee” when my efforts result in a sale for them.

I was recently honored with perhaps the largest award in the affiliate industry — the Affiliate Summit Pinnacle Awards “Affiliate of the Year.” I am very honored and wanted to share something that Allison Matthews, Vice President of Membership and Community Development at the Greater Starkville Development Partnership, wrote for the local Partnership Newsletter about this achievement.

Mike Allen, president of Shopping-Bargains.com, LLC received the “Affiliate of the Year” award at the third annual Affiliate Summit Pinnacle Awards Gala January 12 in Las Vegas.

Mike started his online business as a hobby in February 1999, but left MSU at the end of 2003 to work on the business full time. Shopping-Bargains.com now lists coupons and deals for about 2,000 online stores in the U.S. and U.K. markets. Mike has 6 part- time employees.

The Affiliate Summit Pinnacle Awards are affiliate marketing’s most prestigious, competitive honor. Award winners are recognized because they are innovative leaders with vision and influence.

More than 3,200 people attended the Affiliate Summit earlier this month. The Summit was founded in 2003 for the purpose of providing educational sessions on the latest industry issues and fostering a productive networking environment for affiliate marketers.

Needless to say, I did not achieve this award alone. I have hundreds of great partners to “affiliate” with and some wonderful employees. I have a very supportive wife and family who have given much (including evenings and even holidays) to allow me to work on my dream of business ownership via Shopping-Bargains.com.  I also was blessed with the votes of my peers who chose to honor me in such a way.  I sincerely thank each person for their part in my success and the successes of my company. It is a privilege to work with so many good people.

Seven Sales Lessons from Mark Stevens

Today I read a very interesting article by Mark Stevens entitled Sales Lessons From a Fly Fishing Master and found at Entrepreneur.com. Mark Stevens is a bestselling author and the CEO of MSCO which is a management and marketing firm. In this article, Stevens offers seven lessons about sales and being a salesman which I found very valuable. I quote these nuggets below:

1. If there are two versions of you, the salesperson and the civilian, people will see you as disingenuous. There must be only one you.

2. Relate to people exactly as you are. Imperfections are not seen as reasons not to do business with you. Just the opposite, your willingness to be transparent is seen as vindication that you are the genuine article — a trustworthy individual one can reliably do business with.

3. Tell your clients and prospects what they don’t want to hear when you believe that the painful medicine will be in their best interests. They may be upset with the messenger in the moment of truth, but you will stand out from the yes-men when the dust clears.

4. Always carry yourself with great pride, knowing that a salesperson is a “prince of the company.” Others can work the books and make the factory hum, but as IBM founder Tom Watson said, Continue reading “Seven Sales Lessons from Mark Stevens”