One of the best places to make business contacts in your field is in forums or groups. We have been using Linked In Groups to meet new people and they have been lovely to talk with.
For example, if you’ve started an affiliate web site that sells specialty dog training devices, hang out in the many dog-related forums and newsgroups.
But instead of trying to help end consumers so they’ll visit your site, make friends with experts in related fields. In this case pet sitters, roomers, dog trainers, veterinary assistants, and even animal behaviorists can all be excellent contacts.
As with all business networking, look for ways to help your colleagues. If they have their own site, offer them a link on yours. If they have an opt-in list, perhaps you can set up a special web page, and give them a rebate on any commissions you make. If they write their own articles, perhaps you can turn them into a mini-ebook and offer it to all your visitors.
And there’s no reason you can’t be proactive, and send an email to noncompetitors
– or even competitors – whose sites you admire. You don’t have to consider every competitor your enemy. In a future special report we’ll explain exactly how you can create powerful partnerships with your competitors. But for now, simply look for opportunities to be helpful.
One very easy way to help people is to give them feedback (polite feedback) on items that are not working on their website (links, images, or even the odd crash).
Another way to make powerful friends online is to read your Spam. That’s because ALL online merchants want to know if someone is promoting their affiliate product via Spam. It’s not just the Spammer who can suffer some stiff legal penalties – they can too. So if you see someone’s ebook or software being sold via Spam, write to them and let them know. Make sure you keep the original Spam, and send it to them as an attachment (not
forwarded) so they receive all the headers intact.
How can networking help get you targeted traffic? If you make 20 strong, personal, one-on-one business contacts every month, at least five of them will end up sending you traffic. Somehow, someday, they’ll start pushing the right kinds of visitors to you.
It might be by linking to you. They may mention your site in a viral ebook or one of their articles. They might want to do a joint venture or partner on a money making project. They might do all these things – and many more.
Yes, it’s old fashioned. It’s not autopilot. It’s not passive. But networking costs you nothing except time – and can be worth gold in the long term.