Who Won & What Was Their Winning Entry?
During October 2021, WPX wanted to celebrate our affiliate marketing customers (we have loads of ’em) with a big contest event.
1st prize was $5,000 cash while 2nd and 3rd would get access to the $997 training program of affiliate marketing legend, Matt Diggity.
Matt was also the sole judge for this event.
In terms of criteria, Matt looked for unique and/or effective affiliate marketing hacks and he also cited 3 Honorable Mentions, which appear below.
Entry was completely free and unlimited and you can view the hundreds of entries over at https://wpx.net/affiliate-marketing-contest/
1st Place Champion: Ameen M.
Here is Ameen’s detailed, winning entry (Congrats Ameen, nice job!):
Native advertorials are well known amongst affiliates promoting high-ticket offers using paid traffic from native advertising networks. They offer the creative freedom to use a wide variety of angles to boost conversion rates for hard-to-convert offers. Product reviews are restricted by the need to appear objective, unbiased, and credible. The advertorial format allows for the use of other copywriting formulas including Problem-Agitate-Solve (PAS), Attention-Interest-Desire-Action (AIDA), and Before-After-Bridge.
I. Native Advertorials with Retargeting: There are often paid search targeting restrictions or high competition when bidding for review, product, or brand-specific keywords. Integrating retargeting pixels into your content allows you to advertise to specific segments of visitors. The segments could be specific to the product, category, brand, or stage of customer journey (discovery, interest, intent, or ready for purchase). Using paid retargeting ads with native advertorials, or other landing page types, would be a worthwhile test for difficult offer categories that may require multiple touch points before an eventual conversion (e.g., financial, home services, other lead based services).
The customer journey to conversion varies widely by product or service category. Content marketing relies on embedded calls to action and conspicuous placement of related articles to move readers through the funnel to conversion. These are passive in nature.
I. Embedding Quiz/Survey widgets: The most common surveys or quizzes are calculators for money or time in the form of loan estimators, debt payoff calculators, skin-type product recommendations, or project cost estimators. These could pertain to the nature of the service for lead generation offers, or product-specific information like capability, size, cost for ecommerce. The use case that comes to mind is embedding these into content targeting the information stage of the customer journey.
II. Integrating Automated Webinar funnels: Marketing agencies, consultants, and high-ticket coaches use pre-recorded webinars late in the customer funnel to warm up and educate prospective customers before their imminent sign-up or conversion. This pre-recorded webinar flow can be repurposed for affiliate offers in tough to convert niches such as financial, retirement, and lead-gen for certain service industries. Calls to action within affiliate content to sign-up for an “informational” webinar or including it within email follow-up series could be effective.
Certain merchants and product categories offer low commission rates despite the underlying product offering high margins (cough Amazon Associates). For those with ecommerce experience, there are ways to effectively improve profits per conversion without relying on the merchant.
I. Combining Affiliate Sites with Product Imports*: Embedding remarketing pixels in your affiliate sites with traffic allows you to drive sales for separate private label products that you own with less advertising spend per sale. The act of the affiliate site’s content acquiring organic traffic effectively provides an audience to target directly with the separate private label brand’s products.
If the merchants affiliate commission rate is 10%, and your margin on your private-label product being fulfilled by a 3PL is 30-40%, then you would have a significant uplift in profit per conversion. You also have the benefit of not having to wait to rank the separate website before making sales.
II. Convert Affiliate Site to Ecommerce Store*: Affiliates with domains relevant to a product category (exercisedepot.com, bicepblaster.com) can convert all or part of their site to an ecommerce store for their private label product(s) while retaining high-ranking content that acquires organic traffic. This provides more profits per conversion and alleviates the need to compete for Amazon search rankings. eCommerce brands with rankings may also command higher multiples than affiliate sites when it comes time to sell the site on.
III. Convert Affiliate Site to Ecommerce Store (Part 2) *: The potential to convert from affiliate site to private label ecommerce store could be interpreted as a hidden value metric when reviewing affiliate sites to buy on a marketplace. There are scenarios in which sites receive strong traffic to their content, have poor options to monetize with affiliate or display. This makes for lower acquisition costs.
If the traffic and product category are conducive to private label sales, the buyer of the site could unlock hidden value by converting it to an ecommerce site. The existing traffic from content could be used to drive product sales. Those private label sales using third-party fulfillment would provide more revenue per conversion than another merchant’s affiliate commission rate.
*These suggestions assume low manufacturing cost; small-to-medium size product that does not require regulatory and safety considerations (e.g., certain electronics, medical, chemicals, or consumables etc.); and the use of third-party logistics, whether that’s Amazon FBA or another independent 3PL provider like ShipBob or RedStag.
Reviewing Large Affiliate and eCommerce Sites
I. Screen Large Affiliate Sites For Poor Performers: Mainstream affiliate sites like TheSpruce, WisePick have pages with profitable products to promote that rank poorly for low-to-moderate competition keywords and have low Ahrefs UR. These can be outranked with the right content strategy and targeted SEO effort. Sites of this nature are a great starting point for niche research.
II. Screen Medium-Size eCommerce Sites: Some medium-size ecommerce sites offer reasonable commissions 6-7% on products with high average sales prices. Some of their underlying product pages don’t receive enough SEO attention and languish in the SERPs for rank-able keywords. Performing bulk analysis on sites’ product catalogs can reveal high price products that do not rank well for keywords. These can be sniped for commissions with a review article.
III. Amazon Browse Tree Guide: The beginning stages of research start with niche selection. It’s sometimes cumbersome to dig for seed keywords to begin searching. The Amazon Browse Tree Guide are Excel catalogs available to Amazon Sellers to assist them in correctly classifying their products. It is a vast set of files that cover most underlying sub-categories and niches within each product vertical. While the official documents are gated behind Amazon Seller Central, a simple Google search (Query: Amazon browse tree guide) will show third-party sites that aggregate the direct links to the documents in Amazon S3. This is a great resource to inform one’s niche research, even if it’s for affiliate purposes, and not for private label products.
View all contest entries here.
2nd Place: Colby W.
My #1 quick-win/tip is really focused on the brand builders and how I go about kickstarting any of my new brands with a social exposure strategy.
This isn’t your traditional setup Hootsuite and invite your friends and family bullshit. This is about looking through your niche for MULTIPLE Facebook pages + Pinterest pages to acquire before you’ve even begun writing your first piece of content.
For example, I recently started a new brand in the Food/Recipes space and am extremely excited about the traction we are seeing from this strategy. We bought the old brand and domain name and started immediately looking for fan pages that could be a great fit.
We shortlisted a handful of FB pages by looking for:
1. Engagement – Total % of fans engaged in comparison to total likes on x-number of posts
2. Volume of posting
3. Type of content we would share (videos? Memes? Guides? Links to Web Content?)
4. % of total followers from Tier 1-2 Countries (mainly English speaking and Europe).
We shortlisted a handful of Pinterest pages by looking for:
1. Total growth of the account
2. Relevancy of posts/board families
3. Follower count and engagement
From there, we would reach out to the admins of the pages and ask about a possible partnership in the future, and set the first meeting. Typically, each of the page owners has a “price” for posting and shares… Walk them down this path and then just ask what would you want for this page or brand? You’d be surprised how much a 100k+ fan page on FB costs when you’re talking to somebody who isn’t monetizing their content or pages.
For this brand, I had the pleasure of buying a 150k follower FB page with a 16-20% organic engagement metric before we hit publish on our first piece of content. The price was $2,500 and GUESS WHAT? I can post affiliate links in our viral memes, recipes, etc.
You can buy them significantly cheaper when they are smaller also.
Almost every FB brand has a Pinterest account that has been slowly building. Most of the owners will throw those in as well at no additional cost or something small.
I prefer to keep the fan pages brands “separate”, but in the family. So, I will rebrand something like (Fan Page Name – a (insert new website brand partner). Something along those lines to show the relationship, but focus on not distracting the existing fan base.
The benefits are enormous, you’re now done with fake social signals and have a blueprint to what type of content/images ALREADY resonate with your audience. You have now added an ASSET to your website that will only help increase the total acquisition price. Hone in and scale those efforts over and over again… And when you REALLY want something to go viral you now have an exposure engine built and ready for you to fly! Imagine what you could do if you had 5-10 of these social engines ready to share your content with hundreds of thousands of combined followers?
Here is just some love from September screenshotted below for just ONE of my FB pages we bought this summer for our new food/recipes brand.
View all contest entries here.
3rd Place: Shivam S.
My Quick Win SEO Technique For New Blogs – By Finding A Expired Domain With Backlinks From Sites Like Forbes, Entrepreneur, and websites like this in just 5 minutes. You Can find these domains in just 5 minutes.
Generally, domains we find that are ready to register are premium cost about 2 to 3 grand, but here is the technique explained step by step to get a domain that does not need much link building as it already has links from top websites
Step 1- You need ahref, go to site overview and type any top domain like forbes.com, entrepreneur.com like website (You can put any website here). I put these sites because site that are linked by forbes will have links from other top sites like entrepreneur as well. To get a expired with exceptional backlink profile you need to use these top websites
Step 2- Now search for the domain in the site overview and go to linked domains in the left sidebar at bottom
Step 3- Extract all the linked domains in an excel sheet.
Step 4- From the excel sheet copy the domain column and then put it in the GoDaddy bulk domain search and hot search. The bulk search will find all the domains which you can register now. or some domains which are in the auction
Step 5- Extract these domains from GoDaddy bulk search from the export option and then go to ahref and do a batch analysis of the domains
Step6- Now with the batch analysis find a domain with high authority and with an excellent backlink profile
If you have the budget, then invest in the domain and you will have a domain ready to work on with backlinks from some top-level sites like Forbes and others
PS- Before buying make sure you have checked for the availability of the links, because sometimes the ahref data is not updated but dead links are removed from these top websites, so make sure the links still exist on those websites
PS2- I found a lot of domains with this technique that are dr 60 above and ready to purchase without auction but I am still a new blogger so don’t have such big-budget on investing 2 grand on a domain, but I think some of you might be interested in this
PS3- This trick is not available anywhere because I personally made it to find expired govt domains that can rank any article easily
So by this quick win affiliate trick you can get a domain that is high DR/PR and with an exceptional backlink profile. To get such links to a new domain might need you to invest around 2 years.
If you work correctly on these sites with proper SEO strategy, the article ranks easily because you just bought authority, not just a domain.
Starting your Microniche affiliate website with these type of expired domains will get you awesome results and revenue in a short time
View all contest entries here.
#1 Ahmad K:
Haro reverse engineering is a way to build backlinks more easily on website. Once you start earning small amount of money from, after getting traffic to one site. I would suggest to build another one in same niche. Request for Haro and use the quotes from sources on one website and ask them to link to another in return of using the quote and backlink. By using this technique I was able to build backlinks to my new website from high authority websites (like quillbot.com) in no time. Yes I have the proof too. So both websites will act as a link earning machines for eachother. Thats it. I’d also love to share this technique practically with others too.
#2 Geoff C:
Private sponsorship deals with YouTubers
Concept: To give your site a spark, outreach to YouTubers and pay them to mention your website in their video (you want to establish private deals, not YT ads). Many YouTubers are not used to being offered deals and will work with you for cheap.
Results: I’ve seen a 5x higher conversion rate from warm YT referrals versus organic traffic or paid ads. Also, an incredibly high, 50% response rate from cold email outreach to YouTubers. As an added bonus, some of those people became my writers, expert sources, and industry friends.
-Make a shortlist of target channels with enough volume to make it worthwhile. You can start with 5-10 since the response rate is so good. I also like to sponsor a series of videos.
-Get their email addresses from their YT About page, or if needed, go to their website’s contact page
-Send a teaser email with the goal to arrange a call to negotiate details
-Agree on a rate and format of the sponsorship (what key items they should mention in their own words and a link at the top of the description).
-Enjoy cheap, high converting traffic!
Include your best affiliate products on your resources page or create your own password-protected page where you offer affiliate vouchers, coupons and such to your readers. So you have two wins at once: affiliate income and people signing up for your newsletter to get the password.
View all contest entries here.
When it comes to digital success, creativity, lateral thinking and problem solving are very important, as shown by these different approaches above.
I would also argue that consistent action, focus and determination are also essential ingredients for success, both online and offline.
Many thanks to Matt Diggity and all of the entrants in our contest and I wish them and you well in your digital projects in the future, possibly with WPX as a partner and contributor in some form.