Lee Robertson sells several cloud back-up solutions as an affiliate via his popular reviews website, CloudStorageBuzz.com. In this interview, Lee offers some useful insights into successful SaaS affiliate marketing tactics for SaaS vendors who want to start an affiliate marketing program.
1. How did you get to promote SaaS and cloud services as an affiliate?
It all started by accident. I was looking for a service to back up my files and did a post about the search on my company blog. That post started to get traffic and made me think that maybe I could create a website about the different services available and review and rate them. Eventually it grew into CloudStorageBuzz.com.
2. What’s the best part of promoting and selling SaaS as an affiliate?
There are a lot of great services out there and it is rewarding to help people find the one that fits their needs.
There is also a lot of room to grow. New services are starting all the time so there is a lot of competition and growth for affiliates to take advantage of.
3. Is there a secret to success in this business niche?
Honesty. There are hundreds, if not thousands, of review websites out there reviewing services but the ones that offer honest reviews – not just reviews of the highest paying services – are the ones that stand out and win readers’ trust.
4. Name the most valuable services an affiliate network could bring to you?
Considering how cold it is where I live in the winter (Saskatchewan, Canada), a trip to Hawaii for me and my family would be great! No network has offered that to me yet (hint, hint). Other than that, I like good reporting that I can use to help me see what is working. Seeing how users respond helps give me ideas for new ways to promote services.
5. What advice would you give to a SaaS company that wants to start an affiliate program?
There are two things I find helpful:
- Join a network! It helps to create trust between the affiliate and the company when both can see the data.
- Have someone that knows about relationship management run the program. Affiliate programs are not just about numbers but managing relationships between the company and the affiliates. It is truly another form of customer service.
6. What do you think will be the hottest trends in the affiliate business in 2014?
Mobile and tablet usage will continue to grow. Networks, companies and affiliates need to be ready for this, which means having mobile- and tablet-ready websites, as well as offering ways for affiliates to earn with mobile and tablet services sales.