Shits about to get serious!
Over the past few years there has been a trend of affiliates scaling their individual campaigns into an office set up with 5+ employees. With the right team you can make a lot more money then you would by yourself. Even better you can make more money with less work hours.
You’re probably saying to yourself:
– Won’t these employee’s just steal my campaigns over time.
– This seems like way more work then running campaigns myself
– The costs of hiring people will cut into all my profits.
No worries my friend! We’ll cover all this stuff and more in this guide on how to grow your affiliate business.
*To create this guide i’ve sat down and spoken with multiple people who have done this different ways, so i’ve broken the whole plan into steps so you can choose the path that fits you best.
STEP 1 – Find the processes you use to create campaigns.
Processes include; new campaign idea creation, finding offers, angles, creating landers, creating creatives, optimizing, uploading campaigns, etc..
Any task that is repetitive you should outsource.
I’d advise dropping all your daily activities into a doc and break it down into very specific step by step instructions on how you go creating and optimizing campaigns (IP Map). I’m talking everything! E.g you login to ads.pof.com using username x and password x, you click "create campaign" etc etc.
This takes a decent amount of time but it’s very important if you want your employees to be effective. This way when your employee’s read over your doc they will understand it because it’s written in the simplest possible format.
STEP 2 – Do you want a Virtual or Local Assistant?
There is no right answer here, affiliates run their businesses very successfully using both VA’s and/or local employee’s. It’s whatever you prefer more, try whichever your naturally leaning to, see how you like it and go from there.
– Easier to lay off if it doesn’t work out.
– Easier to find one if you live in a remote/rural area
– Typically better work ethic. Based on the fact you are giving them an above average wage in comparison to their country’s medium.
– They take the job more seriously/stay longer (this is their career).
– Harder to communicate with.
– Working same time zone.
– Meet and work face to face.
– More expensive.
– If your hiring a college/university student they will consider it an in-between job.
– Harder to lay off.
STEP 3 – How to hire the right Assistant.
Where to hire a VA?
– onlinejobs.ph (pay to post, but worth it)
Where to hire local?
– Job sites monster.com etc..
– University job boards
– Ask questions that apply to what you need, can they program, can they design, any examples of their work. Find out if they can take a task and "get it done", maybe browse some interviewer sites for some more question ideas.
*The key ingredient to making sure you find the right person is 20% in the interview, but 80% in the test tasks you give them. If you like the employee say you need to give them a paid 1 week trial run. Give them some tasks, see how they do, how their communication is with you, how punctual they are etc From this 1 week test, you’ll know if its the right person.
STEP 4 – Going over the job description
You don’t want to jump into training them just yet, you need them to take you and your job seriously. First sit down and work out:
– Payment terms
– Terms/Conditions of the job (not showing up/not getting something done)
– Incentives (cash bonuses and more)
– Anything else you can think of that you may run into
STEP 5 – Start training your employees!
– Take it slow at first, don’t overload them
– Refer to your IP map in STEP 1 and start teaching them the easiest stuff, see how they pickup on it.
– If they pick up well and you like their work, then continue teaching them 1 thing at a time.
> Apart from creating and running the actual campaigns there are a few things your employee’s could/should be doing.
– At the end of the day employees should jot down tasks completed during the day, and any questions/feedback they may have.
– Researching new offers, competition, and new traffic sources.
> Your first employee (especially if its a VA) will likely not work out. The hiring process isn’t easy, but once you get the right person(s), things will become a lot smoother.
– If your going the VA route, you may want to hire 2 guys at once, train them for a month and only keep 1, since it’s a lot harder to find a good VA due to the interview process.
– Use the phone, its faster, and its a better piece of commutation then always typing!
STEP 6 – Possible structures / more employees
Hiring one or two employees at the start is the easy part, since you can keep up to date with them easily. However, once you get that going and want to hire more then it starts to get tough if they are all reporting to you. I recommend training your top guy to be able to train other guys, so you can start creating a pyramid shaped set up. If you set it up right you can have 10-20 people working for you but only have to deal with 2-3 guys.
Structure 1 = You and 1 or 2 employees
Structure 2 = You, and a partner who manages 3+ employees (you will have a very hard time managing more than 2 employees while still playing your role in the company)
Structure 3 = You and 2 partners. These 2 partners manage 2+ employees under them, and work with the 2 employees their managing (pyramid format).
Get those pyramids cranking!
Are any other successful businesses run with 1 single person? Then why yours…
[Part 2] will talk about your business network (aka 3rd pretty employees such accountants, financial advisors, book keepers etc..)
thanks man great post, been thinking about this alot lately just didnt have the right direction on how to go about it.
The quote from breaking bad sticks in my head
"we are not in the making money business , we are in the empire business"
Just finished season 6! The quote is the truth, at the end of the day its how you make more money and increase the stability + freedom in this job.
Massive post stack man! Looking forward to part 2
Great man, looking forward to this series
Best! When I hire my first minion it will be a happy day.
Ive seen a friend of mine grow rapidly in this world since I’ve known him, (granted he’s been doing this longer than I have) but he has since moved into product creation. He’s really been a help guiding me in the right direction and setting up a real business. I watched his team move into their first office and is now in talks with the owner of buying the entire building out from under him so he can grow. If this thread doesn’t get you working towards having employees and building something larger than a 1 person affiliate team, visit an affiliate or advertiser that runs an actual business with employees and an office. Even though there’s overhead, you’re creating the environment to be more productive. I know I am whenever I visit those guys.
lot’s of truth here. if you have employees under you you’ll automatically be more productive because you are forced to be since you have to handle/manage a team. which is a good thing. working from home is cool but you have to take it to the next level to survive longterm.
charles ngo wrote a great post about that topic too https://www.charlesngo.com/the-adveng…per-team-pt-1/
where do you see more potential for growth?
by hiring local employees or remote ones? i’d say it’s local ones because you share the same workspace and communication is easier. more expensive but better for a long term business setup. or am i missing smth here?
A lot of people have VA’s for years. Good ones can be very loyal.
I personally feel it would be easier to expand for the longterm with local employees, but i know people doing it with VA’s right now who think 100% otherwise.
That’s why i tried not to stress much of an opinion in the thread, because it seems to work great with either virtual or local employee’s (you just need to find the right ones).
Great post!! Really need this when I have been Super affiliates!! Btw, I love minifigures and sold that too in my country.. lol..
One way to get the best of both worlds is to move to a low cost country. I’ve owned a business (non affiliate) in Asia for years, and I can tell you it’s easy to hire and fire compared to Western countries. You basically hire and fire at will, often you don’t even need to bother with contracts, at least at first. You get the benefits of seeing people face to face, and having more loyalty. And if you choose the right country (Vietnam, Thailand, Philippines, Costa Rica…) you get to live in paradise as a bonus.
The big advantage of VAs is you, as the owner, can remain location-independent. But not everyone cares about that.
This thing is very crucial as amy wrong move could turn up against you..Iv always wanted to hire a team that could help me expand much further but the scary part comes here,
Wont they steal our traffic sources, campaign ideas and if they are local, they could do much further damage..wont they?
looking ahead on this topic ahead, this would be so interesting !!
I used to hire va’s, graphic designers and developers from agentsofvalue.com for quite some time… great workers however a bit expensive compare to onlinejobs.ph
If you don’t really want to hassle with lots of crap when hiring offshore, it’s a great place to start.
Philippines is definitely the way to go.
@eleadstudio: how about US VA ? any good place to hire ?
Never tried them to be honest.. i guess it works for businesses whos willing to spend twice as much for hiring staff.. started with india first (a HUGE no no!) and then (after getting screwed with shitty employees), i started outsourcing everything to the Philippines and never looked back
Fantastic post as always. This one post is worth the price of admission.
Hey no, u must have had a bad experience..care to share your experience ? Coz I have a good one with freelancers..
I’ve been outsourced a lot… still do, it just that i’m getting sick of the "yes sir! sure i understand your needs and will do a very good job for you..", while getting a totally different animal from what i asked for…
Happened to me all the time with indian guys.. they really want to please, but can’t get it right most of the time.
Just my 2 cent
I’ve had similar experience too.
A big no no to India freelancer. I posted 10+ projects in the past and the line that you mentioned is really familiar among Indian freelancers.
Go an take your advise and try Philippines.
If you’re looking for developers go on odesk, choose 5stars only, min 100+ hours billed .. and go through the review.
I’ve had great experience with filipino and pakistani guys, I still work with them to this day.
As a freelance developer who has had to clean up his fair share of outsourced shit code when clients get fed up with horrible freelancers, I encourage you to spend more upfront to get the job done properly.
In the long run, it’s much more efficient to get it done right the first time than pay someone with no clue $x/hr for crap code that doesn’t work, and THEN have to pay me $xxx/hr later to fix it.
There’s a big difference between the race of the freelancer, but even more important if your hiring the freelancer for a job or two. VS hiring them as a full time employee.
A full time employee on pay roll almost has no motive to give you the run around, they get the job done or theyre going to have to fix it anyways. They also start to understand you and your business over time.
I’m in progress of all that stuff now and some ideas is very nice. And I can clearly say when you find the "right guy" who works for your business – you would relax on this topic but its so hard to find him… I’ve hired more than 20 guys this year and only few of them are "right guys"… But I still trying to do this and I’m sure success is somewhere close. It’s like starting your first compaign that wouldn’t get profit at 99% but you have to do that…
I’m still in the process of doing this properly. My current biggest problem is i don’t need a full time employee, they would have a lot of wasted/open time.