Today Seth Godin has posted a few interesting predictions that point to the fact that “the old world is about to end” and major changes are on the way. He predicts that:
a) There will be no significant newspapers printed on newsprint in the US by 2012
b) 90% of your sales will come from word of mouth or digital promotion by 2011
c) The effort required to outsource a task involving the manipulation of data of any kind will continue to decrease until it will be faster and cheaper to outsource just about anything [see full text of Godin’s post here]
These predictions open up a whole range of exciting opportunities for affiliate marketers, and it is time for many affiliates to refocus, and re-build their strategies. The ways in which online users consume and digest information is constantly changing, and the main change is towards a heavier consumption of digital media. If you are not yet blogging, microblogging, or running an online social networking community, or a forum, you better start thinking in that direction now. Many niches are still wide-open.
We should also take heed to Seth’s prediction regarding the power of WOM marketing. In my “Online Shopping Through Consumers’ Eyes” book I published some data on how online users view product recommendations. There were two questions that I posed before the takers of my survey. One of them was “Do you recommend products/services purchased online to your friends/peers?” Less than 1% said that they never do, while 11% responded “always”, 49% – “often”, and 32% – “sometimes”. The other question was “If a product/service was recommended to you by a friend/peer, would you go online to check it out?” Less than 1% responded “definitely not” and “probably not”, while an overwhelming majority, or 86.6% of respondents said they actually follow recommendation links/advice sent to them by their friends and peers. “Talk about the future of user-generated content!!” was my conclusion.
Finally, do not attempt to do everything yourself. My uncle used to say that no one person can be the best at many things. So, do what you do best, and outsource the rest to those that do other things best. You will then be much more productive and happy.