Shane Melaugh of Impact Podcasts, now ActiveGrowth, and co-founder of Thrive Themes, brought up an interesting question on his January 10, 2015 podcast, “Why You Don’t Get Replies from the Influencers You Contact.” In other words, this article will look at why the big names ignore your appeals to be a JV partner or to promote you to their list. (A JV partner in Internet marketing terms would be a strategic alliance in the brick and mortar world. They are usually more involved, like doing a joint webinar, than a normal affiliate.)
Why Do the Influencers Ignore My Offers?
For instance, as a solopreneur coach or consultant, you need to build a list. You’ve heard that the fastest way to do that is to get an influencer as your affiliate or to get someone with a big following to post your article on their site with a link back to yours. You send out 500 requests to people you know have sizeable lists and who are making six-figure or seven-figure incomes from those lists. After all, you have a great product with a fantastic commission split and lots of testimonials. Yet nobody wants to collaborate. In fact, most of the time they won’t even reply with a rejection. Why aren’t they signing up?
Five Ways to Turn Off Prospective JV Partners and Affiliates
You probably violated any of a number of “common sense” rules for contacting influencers, also known as busy people. Here are some suggestions of things to look at:
- Generic Message – Because you are in a hurry and need to make connections happen now, you send out a blast to that 500 Internet marketers with a message so generic that it appeals to no one.•
- Inappropriate Offer – You offer a sample copy of your software to someone who doesn’t have that kind of audience. Shane Melaugh’s example was of someone sending him software to make your social media marketing easier and faster. It bombs because Shane doesn’t go after that market.
- Weak, Boring Content – You offer to do a guest post, but your article is boring, the same old stuff with no new perspective and no depth.
- Over Reaching – Instead of going after the B-List or C-list people, people a little bit further along or even a lot further along than you, you go after the A-Listers, like Tony Robbins, Robert Allen, Robert Kiyosaki, or Guy Kawasaki.
- Failing to Consider Time Value – Successful people are busy people. What value are you giving in exchange for the value of their time?
8 Ways to Make More Effective Appeals
So, what can you do to get their interest and willingness to collaborate with you?
- Serve Them First, “The Golden Rule of Joint Ventures” – Mark Harris on his “Why Joint Ventures Are the Future of Marketing” webinar interview of Robert Allen, February 20, 2014, called it “The Golden Rule.” Think about “If I were in their shoes, what would I want?” Jeremy Long on a Directions University Bachelors Call on August 1, 2017, said that he’s lined up major partners for DUviso, the first leverage platform, by focusing on what they need and want as business development managers.
- Respect Their Time – Shane made the point that evaluating a software package takes a lot of time so the match of the software has to be spot on for his market or has to replace something he is doing now by making it easier or by shortening the time he spends.
- Specific, Focused Offer – Know your prospect’s interests and market then write a personal letter addressing those interests. For instance, coming to Shane Melaugh with a sample design of a web page template might catch his attention because it is relevant to his Thrive Themes, which includes such templates.
- Valuable Offer – Remember that value is in the eyes of the beholder. Be sure when you offer something of value, it is of value to them: it will appeal to their market. An offer to work to work for free is not a great deal for Shane because it means he has to figure out what you are good at and then train you to do what he wants done.
- Respect Their Marketplace – know who their ideal customers are, what those customers’ problems are, and have solutions specifically for those problems. If you don’t have a match then don’t waste their time or yours.
- Me/You Balance – How much of the letter talks about you versus how much talks about him or her. One rule of thumb here would be no more than 20% of the letter should be about you while the 80% should be about your prospective JV partner. In fact, the more it is focused on that person, the better.
- Shane’s 24-Hours Test – Shane Melaugh suggested letting your first draft rest for 24 hours then re-read it. Look for grammar and spelling errors first. Then look at it from the perspective of the other person. If you were the one receiving that letter, would it appeal to you?
Obviously, this will require much more time and effort on your part to pull off than that generic, appeal to everyone type message, which in fact, appeals to no one because it is non-specific. For this reason, you want to choose your prospective affiliates carefully. The better your products and services match your prospects’ needs, the more likely it is they will want what you provide. See “Average Cost to a Small Business to Make a Sales Call,” for an example of what it costs a small business to do an on-site sales call.
While not specific to your seeking JV partners or affiliates to collaborate and market your products and services, it addresses the issues of how costly time is and how important it is to target the right size business.
So, as you prepare your next launch or marketing push, avoid making the five mistakes given above and use the eight ways to make effective appeals to prospective JV partners and affiliates.
Open your heart in selling,
John R. Aberle
Do you love taking care of your customers and prospects? If you yearn to build more long-term business connections with your customers, get your copy of the Amazon Kindle eBook: How Relationship Selling Rewards Small BusinessesHow Relationship Selling Rewards Small Businesses
Shane Melaugh, “Why You Don’t Get Replies from the Influencers You Contact – IMP#34.” January 10, 2015 podcast
John Aberle, “Average Cost to a Small Business to Make a Sales Call,” May 4, 2017