Another great Affiliate Summit is in the books. It is hard to say this is the best one ever because they all deserve that title in some way and every time I go to Affiliate Summit I come away reinvigorated, not necessarily because of what i learn at the sessions there but because of the people.
Along with all the awesome relationships I have made in the industry over the years it is always very encouraging when I get to meet people who are new to the industry or people who may have been a blogger or site owner but are just getting into affiliate marketing and I want to share about two of them I met at Affiliate Summit this past week that make this industry the only place I want to be.
The first sat down at my table during my round table discussion about using different affiliate network tools to promote merchants. This gentleman was a last minute signup for Affiliate Summit and I for one was glad he came. As I was showing off some of the different tools (here are 6 awesome ones from Shareasale) I noticed a bit of a glazed look in his eyes. Luckily for me Carrie Rocha from PocketYourDollars.com was sitting next to me and when this guy asked for a bit more information she jumped right in and started from scratch sketching out what affiliate marketing is on a scrap of paper. Turns out he has a very successful website with a lot of traffic in a very specific niche but he had never really heard about affiliate marketing until now. With a LOT of help from Carrie (I was tied up answering some other questions for most of the conversation) this guy sees the potential in the affiliate marketing space and wants to jump right in. I saw him at the Shareasale party later that night also and was able to make some good introductions as well so hopefully this guy will quickly be able to start making his first money as an affiliate. He has a very interesting niche and there are a ton of great merchants he will be able to partner with. I would be very surprised if he doesn’t have his first sale within 7 days.
The second person I met was totally by chance. On Tuesday I was headed to the 15 minute workshops and had a time scheduled with Rae Hoffman (BTW, have you downloaded Rae’s Pinterest case study yet? $19 is a bargain for this awesome information). I got there a couple minutes early and Ashley Coombe and Brian Littleton grabbed me and introduced me to a young lady who was also very new to the affiliate space. This lady had an awesome attitude and energy to her and within a minute of sitting down with her I knew she was going to do some amazing things in this industry. She has a great new app she and her partner are developing and it takes photo tagging and sharing to a whole new level. We chatted for about half an hour and I totally blew off my meeting with Rae (sorry Rae) and if I would miss my chance to sit down with her one on one for a few minutes you know there had to be a good reason.
I didn’t attend Affiliate Summit planning on meeting these two people but they both gave me hope for this industry. The affiliate and performance marketing industry gets a bad rap a lot of times from many different angles but when you meet two people like this who will be able to drive the highest of high quality sales for their merchants it gives me hope that there are many others out there just like them. These two people are why I keep going to Affiliate Summit, why it is an awesome conference and why I have made this industry my career. These two people are why this industry is amazing.
And I would be remiss if I didn’t give a huge shout out to Brian Littleton and his keynote on Monday morning. If you know Brian you know he is one of the smartest and best people, not just in the industry but in the world. He has done more for this industry than nearly anyone else and what he has been able to do with Shareasale has been amazing to watch over the last 15 years. I have hung out with Brian many times and know quite a bit about Shareasale, how he got started, what the company stands for and so on but during his keynote he laid out his 4 Business Justifications which basically went in to why he runs his business the way he does.
I don’t have them word for word (you can watch the video when it becomes available) but his 4 Business Justifications were something along the lines of:
1. The last 30 days is as important as the first 30
2. Don’t place blame, fix the problem
3. Have Fun
4. Surround Yourself with Great People
As he laid it all out it was very easy to see how he really does stick to these 4 justifications in how he runs his business and it shows. Thinking back over the years it is easy to see examples of all of them played out and all of them demonstrated in how he leads the Shareasale team and is a leader in the affiliate industry. On his slides he also included many, many pictures of some of the great people he has surrounded himself with which was very fun to see.
Affiliate Summit just posted the video too:
If you want to meet some amazing people like these and have some amazing experiences like I had be sure to register for Affiliate Summit West 2016 in Las Vegas. I will be there looking for a few hidden gems like the two I met in NYC.