Onofrio Tota is the person behind Globosoft, a network of websites that feature localized software products and services content targeted at the Italian market. In September, he won one of the Avangate Back To School prizes for best performing affiliate.
How important is affiliate marketing for your business now and how do you estimate it will be in the next 2 years?
My company deals with web marketing, SEO and software development, and so affiliate marketing is very important to our business. We also have a network of sites where we review and promote third-party software and services through affiliate marketing. Affiliate marketing is for me a kind of “active advertising” because I can decide the best way to publish and promote products to visitors and also customers and leads. In the last three years, affiliate marketing for my business has grown by 30% every year, and I think this trend will continue for the next 2 years.
What was the most successful affiliate project you’ve worked on and what made it successful?
We’ve had many successes, but one in particular was with a vendor that specialized in email marketing products. The company was not well known in Italy, but with the help of our content websites and blogs we were able to help them promote and publicize their brand with our audience. While promotion is obviously important, we wouldn’t have had the success we did if the products didn’t meet the needs and expectations of users. That’s why it’s important to be familiar with—and even a user of—the products and services you promote. In fact, before starting any new affiliate relationship, I always try the product myself, and if I like it I then proceed with the arrangement.
Which are the main advantages and disadvantages of having the activity focused only on a specific country?
The main advantage of focusing your activity in a single country is that you get to introduce new and original products to your market. While a product may be popular abroad, if it’s unknown in your country you get to be the one to bring it to and popularize it with your audience. The main disadvantage is that you have a smaller pool of users to market to, and, therefore, you have to work harder to reach the largest audience possible.
Can you name 3 digital marketing trends a European /local affiliate marketer should look at for the next 2 years?
- Mobile Marketing is the most important digital trend. It’s sometimes easy to neglect or forget about mobile when you’re concentrating on the desktop/laptop space, but the number of users who browse the web using mobile devices is growing exponentially. So it’s important to pay more attention to mobile SEO, mobile optimization, mobile payments and mobile conversions.
- Content Marketing. Creating unique and quality content is key to being able to have success with search engines and social media. We need to publish new and original content on a regular basis using different tactics like blogging, video, e-books and webinars to maintain our success.
- Direct Marketing. Communication with customers and prospects is very important to affiliate marketers. To improve customer relationships and loyalty, you not only have to build high-quality contact lists but you also need to implement a strategy to contact them via Email and SMS campaigns.
What do you think about the different attribution models? Is there one out there that you think you should be using but aren’t?
Honestly, I’ve never been interested in the rules of attribution and how the specific technology works. It may be to my detriment, but, at the moment, I’m really focused on growing my brand of websites so that my users can feel confident and safe when they decide to make a purchase.