January 28, 2014

The 80/20 Rule – Applied To Affiliate Marketing

By now you have probably heard of the 80/rule, but it bears repeating. Put simply, the rule states that 80 percent of a certain kind of output will be produced by 20 percent of a certain kind of input. This rule has been a guiding principle for the improvement of performance in many areas, from business production to personal development. Though the 80/20 rule is more like a principle than a hard and fast law of nature, its application will usually lead to maximized production and minimized wastes. Here we will take a look at several ways in which the 80/20 rule can be applied to affiliate marketing.

80 Percent of Production will come from 20 Percent of Your Affiliates

This point is the most important application of the 80/20 rule, and should be stated right at the outset. The vast majority of production from your affiliate program will come from a relatively small percentage of affiliates. Savvy affiliate program managers study their affiliates which are the most successful and determine what they have in common. These “best practices” can then be shared with the rest of the team. It is also wise to see what top affiliates do differently from one another, so that team members can be informed of the vast variety of ways to be successful.

80 Percent of Problems will come from 20 Percent of Your Affiliates

The business of affiliate marketing involves the art of working with people. Due to differences in personality types, goals, cultures, and other factors, you may find that you occasionally come into conflict with your affiliates. Study the sources of these confrontations, excessive questions, debates, and screw-ups, and you will likely find that the vast majority of them come from a small percentage of the team. Whether the offending affiliates are worth the trouble should be judged by their relative profits generated to problems caused.

80 Percent of Your Response will come from 20 Percent of Your Marketing

If you are like most businesses you will find that the majority of the response you receive comes from a minority of your marketing methods and ads. Of course, it is a well-known principle in the world of affiliate marketing that marketers should reduce underperforming ads and double down on those which are producing. But sometimes people get caught in the emotional aspects of a particular kind of marketing; maybe such marketing used to produce heavily, or perhaps it is prestigious and reflects well on the business as a whole. Overall, marketing is about producing profits. Underperforming ads and marketing methods should be eliminated and replaced with that which is working now.

80 Percent of Your Sales will come from 20 Percent of Your Products

If you have a large number of products or services which you offer, you will probably find that just a few of them account for the vast majority of your sales. Depending on the relative profit margins of the less popular offerings, and how important those customers are to the business as a whole, it may be a good idea to eliminate unpopular items and services altogether. You can then use the time you spent filling those orders to expanding the sales of your most popular offerings.