FTC 214 | Affiliate Marketing

214: The Affiliate Guy: Maximize Your Income Through Affiliate Marketing With Matt McWilliams

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What is affiliate marketing? In this episode, the Affiliate Guy, Matt McWilliams, joins Mitch Russo as they explore the world of affiliate marketing and how you can maximize your income through it. Get to know how Matt discovered affiliate marketing and the opportunity he quickly realized after he made $10,000 while watching Ally McBeal as he shares his journey from playing Division I golf to online entrepreneur. Matt and Mitch discuss the difference between affiliate marketing and joint venture marketing and the basic concept behind his entrepreneurial success. Tune in and learn how you can maximize your income and start your own affiliate program.

The Affiliate Guy: Maximize Your Income Through Affiliate Marketing With Matt Mcwilliams

Welcome to this moment in time when you get to chill out, tune in, and extract wisdom that you can use to grow your business with your first thousand clients. We are here to support you by making sure you know what is working in business and in life. If you’re reading and have a business that’s in need of some love and some revenue and profits, then I want you to grab my product. It’s called Profit Stacking Secrets. It started out many years ago as a new client assessment, but it became more detailed as the years rolled forward. Hundreds of clients later, I have refined it to be what you need to grow quickly with little investment using marketing strategy instead of cash. Go to ProfitStackingSecrets.com and get your copy.

Onto my guest and his incredible story, many of the guests on my show have created a product or service as a result of having tried several times before they struck gold. In fact, no one I know who is successful did so on their first try with no effort, to say the least. My guest is no different. He started several businesses by doing everything but what he should have been doing before realizing that the one thing he needed to do to succeed, he couldn’t do or buy or get anywhere else, so he decided to create it. In its most simplistic form, he orchestrates profitable relationships between smart people and then makes sure they do what they say. Some would call him a deal broker but as you shall soon see, he’s far more than that. Welcome, Matt McWilliams, to the show.

Mitch, thanks for having me. It’s good to be here.

It’s my pleasure, Matt. I love your story so let’s get right to it. Tell us how this whole thing started for you.

I got into business, in general, I was young. I don’t know when most people get into the business world, but I was about 22. I grew up for about a decade and I knew that I was going to play professional golf. I played the Junior Circuit for forever. I went to the University of Tennessee on a golf scholarship and was ranked as the highest fourteenth in the country in NCAA Division I. That was my life. I played 362 days a year and the three days usually weren’t my choices because I was traveling or something. I loved the game of golf, but I had something the doctor said I was born with in my left wrist with some bones that are out of alignment. As the problem got worse, the solution was surgery with about a two-year recovery time and I decided I didn’t want to do that. As much as I love the game, I did not want to spend that recovery time. I decided I wanted to get into golf instruction because that’s the only other thing I knew.

My dad was a golf instructor, so he was willing to hire me. A little nepotism never hurts. He hired me to be a golf instructor. The problem was I was a terrible golf instructor for the average, beginner to intermediate player. I was good with my friends who were as good as I was, but I discovered this website called Google and this is right about when AdWords came out. I got on AdWords and for $0.10 a click, I could get about 100 to 200 people every single day to click on my website. This is 2002. You did not come to my website like you would now and subscribe, get a free report, and join my email list. I would nurture you, build a relationship with you, and eventually, I would sell something. If you came to my website, you either gave me $2,000 or you left. One percent of people gave me $2,000. I was spending $0.10 a click. You can do the math. It would cost me $10 to $20 to acquire a $2,000 customer.

Why did you stop? At that rate, you should still be doing that.

It’s totally not replicatable today. That same click will cost you $0.10 and will be a much longer nurture sequence but at the time, I was the only one doing it. We dominated search marketing and I was getting a customer every single day. I was 22 or maybe I just turned 23 years old and here I am making an average of $14,000 to $18,000 in a weekend teaching these golf schools. Even during our slow times of the year, I was still making $5,000, $6,000, or $7,000 in a week living with my mom, paying her a couple of $100 a month in rent. What I was doing was ridiculous, but I fell in love. I got the marketing bug just like people get the golf bug. You hit that one good shot if you’re playing golf. Everybody who’s ever played golf knows that feeling. You hit that one good shot and you go, “Dang it. I got to come back tomorrow. I got to do this again. I want to quit but I would have that one experience.” We had these little dings set up. I don’t know if anybody remembers the Southwest Airlines app on Windows back in the mid-2000s. I had an app that would alert me every time a sale was made.

Getting people to say yes on the first email is like asking somebody to marry you on the first date. It's not probably the wisest move. Click To Tweet

Mitch, the revelation for me was there was one day and it was pouring down rain. It was a Saturday and our golf school got canceled that day. The whole day I didn’t work and sat at home. I still remember what I was watching. This is a sad thing to admit as an adult male. I was watching an Ally McBeal marathon on FX. About every two hours, I hear a ding. On one Saturday, pouring down rain, I didn’t leave the house, watching Ally McBeal sitting on the recliner eating probably Pop-Tarts, pot pies, and corn dogs, I made $10,000. That was that revelation that the myth that I had grown up believing, which was the income was directly tied to time. In order to make money, you had to leave the cave, kill something, and drag it home. In order to make money, you had to get up, go to work, and you had to labor and work hard. It’s not to say I work crazy hours. I’d be working at 3:00 in the morning setting up ads sometimes, but I worked when I wanted, where I wanted, and at the pace that I wanted. That allowed me to sit there for eight hours watching Ally McBeal and make $10,000.

That was the breakthrough day for me when I realized, “I’ve got something going.” That’s how I got into the online marketing world. Fast forward, a couple of years, I started a different company and we did it all wrong. First of all, I was in a more competitive niche, the insurance niche. I would say the ad costs overall on AdWords would probably be 20 to 25X at that point. In 2004, AdWords was well known by most businesses. If you said Google AdWords, nobody looked at you with a blank stare like they did in 2002. We did everything but what we should have done to build our business. We tried banner ads, AdWords, and SEO. There were no social media back then, but we tried forums. We tried everything you could possibly think of back then. Call centers, you name it, and then we realized we didn’t have any money. We were out of money. We had $5,000 left in our bank compared to our competition, which probably both had at least $5 million in their bank accounts.

We were broke and I remember sitting there one day in the CEO’s, who’s also my best friend, office, and I said, “Have you ever heard of these people called affiliates?” He’s like, “What are affiliates?” I was like, “They’re people who market your product, but you don’t pay them until after they make a sale.” As a company in the position we were in with no money to spend, here’s the thing, Google at that time made you give them money before they sent you traffic. This was great when it was $0.10 a click and I was converting 1% into a $2,000 product. Not so great when it was $4 a click and I was converting 1/3 of them into an $8 product, so they require you to get. Just like Facebook and LinkedIn do today. Those are all great forms of marketing when you have the money, but we didn’t have the money.

We were like, “Great.” I explained to him what affiliates are and how they work. They’ll promote us and they’ll expand our audience. We don’t have to worry about targeting and about having money first. Hunter, my friend and CEO, looks at me and goes, “How do we find affiliates?” I look at him and go, “I have no idea.” It was Memorial Day weekend in 2005 and I was determined. That weekend, I had three days. No one is in the office. I was all by myself and I was determined to learn how to find affiliates and how to reach out to them. I was determined that by Tuesday morning, I would have our first affiliate for our company. For eighteen hours a day for three straight days, I missed the cookouts and I missed the fireworks. That’s been my mission ever since.

Matt, I got to ask because I’ve been in a similar situation and I’m sure many readers have been as well. When you think back to that time, would you attribute the fact that you were desperate that this happened? Because the problem is that, if you’re sitting there making $10,000 on a Saturday eating corn dogs, you’re not feeling desperate, but here you are. Now you’re desperate. You have $5,000 left in the bank and your competitors are 100 times or 1,000 times better capitalized than you. Was that part of it? Was it something completely different that I’m missing here?

It was a combination of desperation and at that point, Mitch, I had reached the point where I had been successful so early. I was never the type to flash it. I had $150,000 in the bank when I was 23 or 24 that was earned. I grew up with a single mom and then a single dad. I knew what both sides of the tracks felt like, but it wasn’t like I had anything handed to me so to speak. I had many blessings and many benefits. Please don’t get me wrong, but I earned that money through a lot of dumb luck in part, but also there’s some hard work.

I never wanted to flash it but people knew where I stood on things in my family, for instance. Honestly, I would say I was a young punk and I would be willing to bet unintentionally, but in retrospect that I came across as probably a little too good for other people. Here I am 1.5 years later, starting this other business and I blew through all my personal wealth. That $5,000 that was left wasn’t any of my money. I was a minority investor in this company, so I was not the one who put in the last $10,000 of which we spent half of it on a banner ad campaign that made us $8. This was not even my money.

There was this part of me, not only in desperation, that you can only experience if you’ve been up and then come down. That’s not desperation. It’s a combination of two things. There was no plan B. This was always going to be the thing that worked. It was like this weird amalgamation, Mitch, of yes, a little bit of the desperation aspect, but also the faith aspect. I knew this was going to work and it had to work but it was also this feeling of, “There’s no way. I no longer live with my mom. I’m successful. I drove a nice car and I left my hometown. I went to Nashville, Tennessee and started a company. We were doing big things.”

FTC 214 | Affiliate Marketing
Affiliate Marketing: There are some creative ways that you can promote affiliate offers and get affiliates in a two-way relationship. That’s more of what people would consider being like a joint venture, but it’s still affiliate marketing.

 

At least that’s what it looked like, and I couldn’t go back. I remember sitting there one day thinking, “If we run out of money and this fails, I’m not going back home. I will go to work and do anything but I’m staying here. I will live on somebody’s couch here. I will not answer the phone if my family calls. I will do whatever it takes to make it here rather than move back home.” It was that Mitch and I don’t even know how to describe it. It was less desperation than almost, “This has to work and I know it’s going to work. I just don’t know how, but I’m going to make it work come hell or high water.”

There are thousands of people reading this who have a similar story. I’ve had a similar story and what we’re talking about is you made the trip, burned the boats, and turned around. The island is full of hostile natives now and you got to do something. You don’t have a choice.

Is that Cortez where that comes from?

Yeah.

It was definitely that.

That’s the motivator. This is just my personal belief, at least for me. If those moments don’t exist, there’s not a lot that can particularly motivate. At least in my case, it wouldn’t have motivated me unless I had something like that happened at the time. Here you are, you started this company, started finding affiliate offers, and marketing them. How long did it take before you went from $5,000 in the bank to a little bit more than that?

I made that promise that that Tuesday, we would have our first affiliate, our first person, our first member of our affiliate program. We signed up two affiliates on Memorial Day. I still remember one of their names. A guy named Brandon from the mountains in western North Carolina called up and said, “It’s Brandon.” I still remember his voicemails. He never made more than a couple of thousand dollars in a month. The other affiliate we signed up at the time, probably about the same deal of $3,000 to $4,000 a month, but for us where we were, sending us that first week a few hundred dollars in leads each was huge because it was proof of concept. If I could bust my butt for three days and get two affiliates to send us maybe $2,000 in that first week, what would happen if I busted my butt for the next 30 days? Can I get us $20,000 a day? Mathematically, probably.

We ended up scaling ridiculously fast, Mitch. Fast forward, we were at $12.5 million over the course of a year, just eighteen months later. We scaled our affiliate program crazy fast. It’s not necessarily replicatable today at that level. If most people do what I did, they can probably build a $6 million or $7 million affiliate program that fast. We had a couple of things happen in our market that helped us do that. We had those two affiliates on Tuesday morning. Before we even built the technology to have affiliates, we got the affiliates.

The money is in the follow up in any type of sales. Click To Tweet

On Tuesday morning, I messaged our developer who was over in a third world country in Eastern Europe, Moldova, the former Soviet Republic. He’s in Montreal. There’s a community of Moldovans there and we get to talk to him. I messaged him Tuesday morning, I said, “Urgent. I need you to build us an affiliate platform today. I need you to code it in today.” He’s like, “Okay.” We spent like an hour going back and forth about how this would work. Sure enough, 2:00 in the Wednesday morning, and I’m still up because this is my life now, he said, “It’s ready for testing.”

By about 10:00 the next morning, we had finished testing it and going back and forth. I was sleeping 45-minute increments for three days getting this done. I would wake up, do some testing, give him some feedback, go sleep for 45 minutes, check my messages, and do that. He was doing the same thing. While I was testing, he was taking a nap. About 10:00 on Wednesday morning, we had a functional affiliate program. I got them signed up and they started sending us traffic that day. They switched from our competitors to us that day and the rest is history. We grew from there, north of $12 million.

Your story is a perfect example of an entrepreneurial startup, particularly a software startup. I could repeat many of the same things you said during the testing phase. My partner coated the entire product while I was doing all of the testing and all of the documentation. We were absolutely in the same place. I could tell you, we had the same experience, which is fun to hear. First of all, let’s start with some basics. We’ve heard of joint venture marketing and you talked about affiliate marketing. What would you say is the difference?

I use them interchangeably, Mitch. Some people differentiate and they say an affiliate is someone who is smaller. You might have hundreds of affiliates and then tens of joint venture partners. I don’t look at it that way. JV, joint venture affiliate, partner, or whatever. Amazon calls them associates and some people in certain niches, if you’re in the parenting niche or in the gardening, herbs, cooking, or supplements niche, you might call them ambassadors. We tell people all the time, just because I teach you how to grow an affiliate program doesn’t mean you need to use the word affiliate. If your audience doesn’t speak that language, don’t call them affiliates. Your audience may be where I was in December 2004. When I first heard of affiliate marketers, I thought they had something to do with radio stations.

Announcers would say, “Our affiliates in San Diego.”

I didn’t know what that meant, so I learned. The terminology to me is irrelevant. The concept has been around since 5,000 BC. The basic concept is this. I’m going to send you sales in some way, whether it is clicks to a free download that converts into sales, sign up for a webinar, sign up for a live stream, or directly to buy a product. It doesn’t matter. I’m going to send you sales and you are going to pay me something in thank you for that. Many years ago, Sisyphus and Marcus Aurelius sent each other’s favorite restaurants.

The restaurant owner looked at him and said, “Thanks for the referral. Your next meal is free.” All we did when Amazon created the first affiliate program was to add technology to it. It’s the same concept. You send me people and I convert them. It’s up to the restaurant owner to do the rest. It’s up to him to make sure that they get their food on time, give them a good experience, and collect the money from them. It’s the same basic concept that’s been around for thousands of years, as far as the terms are interchangeable.

Let’s talk about the people who would like to have affiliates. Let’s say I have a coaching business and I want to use affiliates to get me more coaching clients. What would you say are the basic steps other than me calling a buddy and saying, “Send me somebody and I’ll give you $1,000,” or something?

FTC 214 | Affiliate Marketing
Affiliate Marketing: Start with the people that you know that have a platform.

 

I would start with the people that you know that have a platform, a low hanging fruit. Back in 2005, that Memorial Day weekend, I didn’t know anybody. I had to start from scratch, so I can tell you what I did. It’s still what we teach to this day because it is the best way to find affiliates. You go to this website called Google, search for your competitors, and find the people promoting them. When I reach out to somebody who’s a prospective affiliate, I’m going to tell them all about my affiliate program, the commissions, how awesome my company is, how we serve people, and my life story. When I was thirteen years old, my dad left and then when I was fourteen, I did this. They want to tell them like they want to write a novel. That’s not the thing you want to do. You want to write a short email.

Our template is either 3 or 4 sentences long. We have a few different templates but the one I’m thinking of in particular is three sentences long and it says this, “I saw you were promoting so and so. I have a similar product and it’s the same in this way, but it’s different in this way. Would you be interested in supporting our launch?” There’s a little bit of a tweak depending upon what you’ve got going on. “Would you be interested in being an affiliate for our product? Let me know. Let me know what you think.” It’s four sentences long. You need it super quick and it’s not meant to get a yes. Most people think, “I want to get them to say yes on the first email.”

That’s like asking somebody to marry you on the first date. It’s not probably the wisest move. All we’re looking for in this email are three simple words. “Tell me more.” I have now opened a dialogue with that person. Mitch, if you say, “Matt, I’ve got this cool thing,” and I go, “Tell me more,” I’ve now given you the floor to talk for 3 to 4 minutes without me interrupting. I’ve given you permission but if I say, “Mitch, how’s it going?” You say, “I’ve got this new product,” and you talk for 3 to 4 minutes, you’re known as annoying. You’re not a good person. Nobody wants to have further conversations with you. When I say, “Tell me more,” I’ve given you permission to write back with 10 to 15 sentences that give details about how much money I can expect to make and about the product and things like that.

The best place to find them when you’re first starting out is start with your friends. If you have customers, certainly your customers. 9 out of 10, the best place to start is people who are promoting your competition. Number one, they already know what affiliate marketing is. They’re promoting your competition. You don’t have to coach them or explain to them or tell them how to embed their link into an email like you might with a customer or a friend who doesn’t know this stuff. Secondly, you know they have the audience. If I promote the new Adidas running shoes, what have you identified about my audience? My audience are runners and they are interested in shoes. If I’m the head of Nike’s affiliate program and we’ve got a new set of running shoes, I probably want to reach out to those people and say, “Would you be in and promoting these?”

Matt, what would be the information that the person who says, “Tell me,” wants? Once they say, “Tell me more,” that’s great. Clearly, you’re not then telling them your life story. They want certain information and you know what that information is. Tell us what it is.

Number one, they want to know what is the actual product and who is it for. It’s a simple sentence. I’m going to use one of our products, for example. We’ve got a program called Find Affiliates Now and I would say, “Here’s the product, it’s called Find Affiliates Now. It is a high five-figure to mid-six-figure entrepreneurs who either don’t have an affiliate program or they are just starting an affiliate program.” That takes care of who it’s for. I will share the price point. We have a little line that says, “Quick facts.” It says, “Price point, $997.” It would say launch dates or it would say, “Evergreen program, available year-round.” It would have a marketing plan. With this, we say, “It’s a four-email marketing plan, Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday.” That leads them into a webinar where we sell the program. That’s the suggested marketing plan. I don’t go into a lot of detail. I say, “Four emails, webinar on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday.” When they reply back and say, “I’m in,” we give them more detail like, “Here are the emails to send,” and all that.

They want to know the commission. The commission is 50%. I do give a little bit of detail there because we have a lifetime cookie, which means that when people promote us, if they buy three years later, they still get credit and that applies to all products. If they come through and buy this and then upgrade to this and buy this, they’re still getting commissions because it’s a sales point for us. I then say something along the lines at the end, I recap the offer, “We only asked for four emails that go into a webinar. It’s a huge value for your audience.” Let me know if this sounds great to you and I’ll send you all the assets this week. We’ll get a date on the calendar to get you going. That’s probably about 8 to 10 sentences long.

That’s exactly what somebody would need. This is a great training. Matt, I appreciate you doing this because if I’m a new business or if I’m a business and I don’t have affiliates, this is the information that you’re going to need before you start sending that quick email to strangers. The other thing, in my world, that I’ve needed as well was if I have conversion rate information on my ads. The potential partner wants to know that. Have you found that to be an issue or not really?

Another great way people never think of is their 'competition.' Click To Tweet

I forgot to say that one, that would be another one of the little quick facts. For instance, in that particular promotion, we would give them the opt-in, the registration conversion rate, which I happen to know is 62.4%. We would tell them, “62.4% of people will opt-in.” We’ll share the show up rate for the webinar, which is somewhere in the high 30s. We’ll share the conversion rate. What we would share with them, being that these people are already affiliates, most of them will know what this means. If you’re new to the affiliate world, you might not understand this on the surface. We would say, “The EPC,” which is the Earnings Per Click. Let’s use easy numbers here. Let’s it’s $1,000 product and of the 1,000 clicks, ten of them convert into a $1,000 sale and I’m making $500 a sale, so that’s $5,000. My EPC, as the affiliate, would be $5 per click, which is high. Ours are in the $5 to $7 range. It’s what we try to target. I would put that in the email.

This is usually only relevant in the retail products world, the physical products world. If our competition is on what’s known as an affiliate network, there are networks out there of affiliates where you can run your program, we won’t go down that rabbit trail, but their EPC’s are public. If our EPC is higher than maybe the person they promoted before or the product they promoted before or the industry average, I will certainly highlight that. I would say, “Our EPC is 672. The industry average is 344. By the way, Company A is 510 and Company B is 434.”

I’ll sneak in a little dig at the competition there to highlight what that means. We’ll include those stats as well. It’s quick. It’s not writing it in narrative form, of course. The first email probably takes twenty seconds to read, this email probably takes two minutes to scan. Once they reply to that email and say, “I’m in,” we send them a long email, like, “Here’s some sample email copy. Let’s get your dates on the calendar. Let’s schedule a call to talk about your promotional strategy. Here are some social media posts you could use.” They said they’re in, now I’m going to send them the whole ball of wax.

You may have planned to ask this, Mitch, but I thought about it in the flow there. The big key for me over the past years has been follow up. The money is in the follow up in any type of sales. We use a task manager called the Asana. Probably 20% of the people reading use Asana. When I send an email to a prospective affiliate, the first thing I do, as soon as that clicks in, is go to Asana and put them in for a follow up ten days later. We found that ten days is that nice balance between it’s been a while but it’s not too far. I’m not being annoying. I’m following up a week and a half later. It also guarantees that over time, I’ll catch them on different days. You don’t come to another of that same day for quite some time.

In case they’re like me and they never check email on Wednesdays, which I never do. It’s likely that if you email me on a Wednesday, I’m more likely to miss it at least for a couple of weeks. We schedule that. If they say, “Tell me more,” I follow up. I go in there and same thing, I move them to a separate area but I’m going to follow up a little bit quicker on that email. I’ll follow up about five days later on that email. If they say, “I’m in,” the next step is like, “Let’s schedule a call.” Same thing, I want to be following up constantly. You’d be amazed on how many times I reached out to somebody 10, 11, 12 times and they finally respond and say, “Tell me more.” I tell them more and it’s the sixth email from there that they respond to and they still end up promoting. It’s 194 days after the first time I emailed them that they’re finally promoting. It’s all in the follow up.

Matt, you’ve given us an incredible overview in a relatively short period of time. I certainly feel as if there’s more now that I know than I did before, which is great. I have a feeling that readers are feeling the same way too. I have one story and then a question. When I was in the software business many years ago, we ran Joint Ventures, which I thought was more personal than what affiliate marketing is. At Joint Venture, I would call up another CEO and say, “We have about 6,000 copies of our software going out every month. Do you want to put something in the box?” It was free for us because we had the traffic and we had the volume. If they said, “Sure,” I’ll say, “Whatever you want to sell, tell me what the commission is and how you’re tracking it.” That’s how we made money. The reason I’m telling this story here is because there are many variations on how to do this. The basic concept is you promote something for me, pay me something for it, and I’ll keep promoting for you as long as it makes sense.

What you said there, Mitch, was powerful. Another great way people never think of is their “competition.” When I was in a space where we taught guitar, we had a course about $6 million in sales a year teaching people how to play guitar. One of our “competitors” was a guy named Dan Denley who had a course about blues guitar. Our course had a single lesson, a one-hour lesson on blues guitars. It was lesson fourteen. When they completed lesson fourteen and they reported back to us, we had a platform where they could do that, and they say, “We completed lesson fourteen,” we say, “Do you want to take your blues guitar lessons to the next level?” 8% of our students purchased Dan Denley’s course. 1 out of 12 students would go on to make us another $50. Right there, we’re making an average of $5 more per $150 customer. We did that with a fingerstyle guitar course, a jazz guitar course.

We didn’t have a membership. We upgraded them to a membership to learn how to play specific songs. All of these were affiliate relationships. We went from making, our normal $149 when I got there, to making almost $185 a customer through promoting other affiliate products. Here’s the cool thing, they promoted us the same way because Dan’s messaging was, “You came to me to learn blues guitar. Do you want to dabble in other types of guitar? If you want to learn general guitar, go buy Learn and Master Guitar.” He told us that about 5% of his students came over to us. He was one of our top affiliates. You can call that a downsell and upsell, it doesn’t matter.

FTC 214 | Affiliate Marketing
Affiliate Marketing: It’s okay to be the affiliate guy.

 

The same is true, we would promote one of our competitors because our competitor, they were $7 a month. Ours is $140, one-time payment. If you were on our email list for more than about a month and decided not to give us $150, we’ll say, “We realized this may be too expensive for you but this other site, it’s only $7 a month. Do you want to go join them?” We were able to monetize thousands of people in our list every single year that more than likely would have otherwise if resulted in nothing through at least making something, which covered our ad costs. There are some creative ways that you can promote affiliate offers and get affiliates in a two-way relationship. That’s more of what people would consider to be like a joint venture but it’s still affiliate marketing.

Matt, we’re at the point in the show where we want to get to know a little bit more about you and the way we do that is we ask you some wonderful, profound, silly questions. I’m going to ask you and I’m going to enjoy your answer no matter what it is. Here’s the first question. Who, in all of space and time, would you like to have one hour to enjoy a walk in the park, a quick lunch, or an intense conversation with?

It would be my wife.

You get to do that every day.

That would be it. She’s the most intellectually stimulating person I know. In this hypothetical scenario, I’ve got an hour free from everything else, that’s absolutely who I’d pick. Not only would it be intellectually stimulating, but it would also be enjoyable. We’d tell a lot of jokes. We’d have fun. We’d talk about big things and plan big visions. We’re at that age, I’m 40 and she’s 38. We got the kids in the house. We’re still fourteen years away from the kids being out of the house. Anytime we can get an hour to ourselves to go for a walk, that’s awesome.

By the way, enjoy those fourteen years because they fly by fast. You have no idea.

I’m beginning to see it. I can already feel it. It’s already gone by fast.

I look at my daughter, she’s 26 years old and she lives in Boston. She has a great job. She makes a great living. She has a wonderful life that she’s built all by herself. There’s nothing better than that pride of knowing that you helped this individual become who they are. That’s what parenting is all about. Enjoy that hour because you get to have that anytime you want. Matt, here’s the grand finale, the change the world question. Are you ready?

When people say, 'tell me more,' they want to know what the actual product is and who it is for. Click To Tweet

I am. Let’s do it.

What is it that you are doing or would like to do that truly has the potential to change the world?

I have a bit of a long answer to this, Mitch. I have a podcast called The Affiliate Guy. The story behind the name is it’s a reminder to myself. It says what I do, I’m the affiliate guy. It turned out to be a great branding. I wish I was smart enough to say I did that on purpose, I didn’t. For years, I blogged and podcasted and was building a platform in the personal growth space. The reason I did that, that was where I thought I could change the world. I thought that I needed to do something big and maybe needed to be the next Tony Robbins. That’s the only way I can have an impact and leave a legacy. I said repeatedly to my wife, to my friends, to all of my mastermind buddies who kept saying, “You got to teach people what you know about building affiliate programs and doing affiliate marketing.” I said, “I don’t want to be the affiliate guy.” I said that many times. Clearly, as you can tell, years later, I decided I did want to be the affiliate guy.

It was because I realized that was the way that I could have an impact on the world. It seems small. I’m going to teach people how to do affiliate marketing. I’m going to teach people how to start an affiliate program. We have a client that we used to work with, and she’s in the parenting niche. She teaches parents how to take chaotic children, people with learning disabilities and things like that. How To Calm The Chaos is the name of her flagship program. Her name is Dayna Abraham. In a short period of time, and when I say a short period of time, I mean a matter of three weeks, I had a phone conversation with her. She’s a friend and I said, “Do you need help with your affiliate program?” She said, “Yes. I need your help. I was too afraid to ask.” I said, “Let me help you.” The previous launch that she did, she had $125,000 from affiliates. In three weeks, we helped her do over $300,000.

Also, we helped one of her affiliates who became a case study for us. We helped her go from zero sales to previous launch to 37. We helped another who had a goal of five sales make and almost 50 sales. We had another one of her affiliates, their goal was ten and they made about 50 sales. Their client, we’re helping them. At their last virtual summit, 104,000 parents registered. Their goal was 30,000. All we did was work with them for a month leading into the summit. They signed up at the last minute. I remember one night I was walking down the stairs and we had had a peaceful bedtime with our kids. It was one of those bedtimes, it seems like it’ll fly by. It’s one of those bedtimes I’ll remember for the rest of my life. Our son was lying in his bed and I was next to him.

We were talking and he reached up and gave me one last kiss. He’s almost five. He still loves to give daddy a kiss. I went to my daughter and we were lying next to each other in her bed. Every night, we do it with our son, she has this big map on her wall, I don’t know how we started this, but she knows all the world capitals. We throw kisses, we’re like, “This kiss is off the capital of Myanmar.” She’ll be like, “Naypyidaw.” It’s our thing. She’s the reason why I know all the world capitals, too. We had this great bedtime. I was walking down the stairs and our stairs do this little turn and I remember I got halfway down and I stopped. I went, “That was a good bedtime.” For some reason, the thought hit me that Heidi, this affiliate who we had helped go from 0 to 37 and Jason and Cecilia, who we helped go from 10 to 50, who we helped go from a goal of 5 to over 50 sales and I was like, “Those three people.” Dana, who we helped go $125,000 over $300,000 of her affiliate programs, which is about 380 families that she was able to help or she otherwise wouldn’t have been able to.

I went, “There are hundreds of families having this same experience tonight that before they purchased this course a couple of months ago, bedtime was chaotic. It was screaming. It was shouting. It was slamming doors. It was kids saying, ‘I hate you.’ Tonight, at least a few of them had a peaceful bedtime.” They experienced the same thing that I experienced. It’s all because I did a little thing, teach them affiliate marketing, teach them how to send some better emails, help them motivate their affiliates, help them set up a couple of things structurally in their affiliate program that got better results. I remember laughing as I was walking down the stairs because I was like, “It’s okay to be the affiliate guy. Maybe that’s the way that I can change the world, by helping people to do exactly what I helped them to do.”

Matt, you are changing the world. I’m glad you’re doing it. I appreciate it so much. Before I let you go, you did promise a free gift for my reader. What do you have for us?

It’s easy. We’ve got a report, it’s called Your First 100 Affiliates. There are fifteen places in there. I shared a couple of them earlier. We share those but a little bit more in-depth. We’ve got some email templates in there. I did a workshop with a mastermind group with the same templates and they all were like, “This makes it simple. We can copy and paste these and tweak them.” Don’t change them too much. If I say it’s four sentences, don’t add a fifth. It took me a decade to figure this out, how to get these perfectly dialed in. There are some templates in there and some mindset stuff as far as asking people to be affiliates and all that stuff. Go to MattMcWilliams.com/Mitch and you can download your copy.

Matt, thank you again for the time. Thank you for your wisdom. That’s what I would call a master class on affiliate marketing. I appreciate it. I hope readers enjoyed it, too. In fact, I’m going to ask the readers. If you enjoyed this, please go over to the Matt McWilliams show page and there’s a button that says, “Speak to Mitch.” Click that button and tell me that you enjoyed it. How’s that? Matt, thank you again. I look forward to our next conversation.

My pleasure, Mitch. Thank you for having me.

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