Episode 122: How To Increase Your Affiliate Commissions By 110 PERCENT – with Mark Thompson


If you’re building an email list, and you should be, then you are probably using it in some way or another to make money through affiliate commissions. Sure, you don’t need to promote everything out there, but if there’s something that you use and fully recommend then why not suggest it to your audience? Mark Thompson is on the show today to talk about his new WordPress plugin Bonus Press that allows you to seamlessly give bonuses to your list.

Watch the show below: Duration: : 17:15
[leadplayer_vid id=”514374FF2F754″]Stuff mentioned in the show

Raw transcript

Episode 122: How to Increase Your Affiliate Commissions by 110 PERCENT – with Mark Thompson

Mike: Hi there everyone! Welcome to Episode 122 of The Mike from Maine Show, the place where we do daily interviews with successful online entrepreneurs. This is your host, Mike Thomas. And today on the show, I have Mark Thompson back on to talk specifically about Bonus Press. What is Bonus Press? Well, I’m glad you asked. Bonus Press is a plug-in that allows you to create specific bonus pages for your affiliate promotions. So, let’s say you wanna send out something to your list and you wanna increase your conversions and increase the value that you give your subscribers. You can — a way you can do is you can add on maybe an interview, like I do on my site or you could do an instructional video or anything of you kind of showing how the product works. And then, say that you’ve got bonuses that you can give these people. So, maybe you’ve got a list of different things, maybe your bonus is a video of you showing exactly how you use the product. I mean, the sky is the limit with this. But I would say that this product is something specific for people that either have a list or are building a list and they want to create more income from the subscribers. One example that I think Mark gives is that he was getting around 30 cents to you know, maybe 50 cents a month per subscriber on his list. And when he started including bonuses for his affiliate promotions, he increased that up to a dollar to two dollars per subscriber per month. So, to put that in realistic terms, if it’s — if you’ve got a list of 1000 people and you’re making 50 cents per person, so that’s gonna be $500 a month but all you have to do, you’re still gonna — say, you still send out to the same people, the same thousand people and you’re getting conversions of a dollar per person or $2 per person per month, that’s between a thousand and two thousand dollars. So that’s you know, you’re doubling your money or even — what would that be, quadrupling your money in the same promotion. So anyways, it’s a super powerful thing, specifically for people doing affiliate promotions. Anyways, I’ll stop babbling and here’s Mark Thompson.

Mike: We are here again today with Mark Thompson. Mark, welcome back to the show.

Mark: Thanks for having me, Mike.

Mike: We’re gonna get right into it today and you’re releasing a new product. You’re honor roll with all of the products that you’ve been releasing lately. And you got tons of success, I think you’ve done — how much is it that you got? Almost — is it half a million or 300,000? Where is it at right now?

Mark: I mean, well. I mean, we’ve — yeah, we’ve done over half a million this year. So, it’s been great. I mean, we’ve had some amazing product launches in 2013 and so, we’re just trying to keep it going. Our products are loving — the members are loving our products. So, we’re just gonna keep on rocking and rolling. So —

Mike: And the products are loving your members too. Mark: Yeah. Yeah, exactly.

Mike: Cool, okay. So, specifically what we’re gonna talk about today is Bonus Press. Can you kind of give us a quick run through of what Bonus Press is and then we’ll kinda get into a little more throughout the interview.

Mark: Yeah. Well, Bonus Press is very simple. It helps you to create Bonus Pages for your email promotions. So, you wanna promote a product and you know, one of the things that I learned right off the back as when I was promoting other people’s products and I was sending them directly to the sales page, it wasn’t converting as well as if I send them to an almost like a landing page where I pre-qualify them, told them about the products, maybe did a personal review of the product and how I find it beneficial and then, they can click my affiliate link and go and purchase the product. And so, as you’ve probably seen — I mean and I’m sure people who are watching this video have seen more and more marketers are promoting their bonus pages or their reviews as opposed to directly selling them to the sales page. And one of the reasons people are doing that is because you’re getting higher conversions, higher affiliate commissions and you’re providing more value to your subscribers. And so, that’s really what the foundation of Bonus Press is all about. It’s to build quickly bonus pages but in a professional way, we’ve added some really nice design elements to make them look extremely professional but you don’t need to be you know, a designer or developer. It’s just a regular WordPress plug-in. So, it works on anyone’s installation of WordPress, regardless of the theme. And it’s actually independent of your existing theme, which is really nice. So, it’s very flexible. You can customize the messaging and it takes the user through a seamless process of seeing your bonus page, clicking on the affiliate link and then, obviously once they buy, they wanna claim their bonuses. We have a really nice opt-in forum where they put in their transaction ID and all of those leads get filtered into a really nice area of WordPress and you can see all of them, and you can either manually send them their bonuses or you can send them their bonuses immediately after they opt-in to the forum. So, there’s lots of different ways to deliver the bonuses but that’s the core fundamental of Bonus Press.

Mike: Yeah. It’s interesting that you talk about instead of just mailing out to people and saying, ‘Hey, here is the offer, go straight to it.’ — which a lot of people are still doing. Like, I still get emails in my inbox from successful people that are just writing good copy or using some kind of email spy and sending people directly to the offer, which works but I think the conversions are gonna be less than doing something that I do specifically is instead of sending people directly to — specifically today, I mean, instead of sending people just right to Bonus Press, I’m gonna send an email out to my list. They’re gonna come to my site. They’re gonna see our interview and be able to learn a little bit more about it, see that you’re actually a real person and you’re not some sleaze ball internet marketing you know, that kind of bad feeling that you get. So, they can kind of get a feeling about who you are and then, make a more — I don’t know, a more intelligent decision about whether or not they wanna buy the product or not. So, but what you’re adding on here is a bonus, which is something that I really haven’t experimented with too much on mikefrommaine.com. What I’ll do is I just say okay, here’s the product creator. We’ll have a little chat about some internet marketing stuff and talk about the product specifically, but then I give them the link. So, my question for you is what kind of increases in conversions are you seeing by giving a bonus to people, as opposed to just sending them on to the link.

Mark: Well, I’ve noticed that it either doubles or triples my conversions. So, when I mail the offer directly and I’m not gonna lie, I still do that. Obviously, there’s certain products that I really want to promote. I just don’t have time to put together a bonus page, but Bonus Press will definitely help make that process a little bit easier. So hopefully, that will help more people create higher quality bonuses. But to answer your question, I double or triple my conversion rates just because of the value I’m giving them. I’m giving them my — you know, my really honest review on the product. And so, more people are willing to you know, purchase through my link if they see that you know, how I’m using it, how it’s benefited my business, as opposed to just mailing them directly to the sales page. So, double or triple my conversion rates but also you can cut your unscubscribes in half as well, which a lot of people don’t think about that aspect too.

Mike: How is that? Can you go into that a little more?

Mark: Well, because you’re providing value to them. So, because of the review, because of the bonus page, people are less likely to say, ‘Oh, he’s just mailing me another offer. I’m gonna unsubscribe’. So.

Mike: Okay, so pretty much because you’re providing value and you’re not just someone else sending a link, trying to get back affiliate commission, you’re putting a little bit of time into whatever you’re doing and doing a little review or showing, like you said, how you use it. Okay, cool.

Mark: Yep.

Mike: Now, here’s the thing with bonuses. I know that I don’t have time to make a bonus for every affiliate offer that comes around and if I did try to make something, I would no wanna to just go kinda half ask and throw something together. What kind of bonuses, for you specifically, had been more effective than others?

Mark: Well, it depends on where you’re at. Like you know, I’ve created a lot of different products. So, there are certain products that I — you know, maybe they’re a year or two old, they’re kind of like sitting there in my vault, just kind of collecting dust or something. I may bring those out and give those away as bonuses, if they’re relevant to the offer. Like in your circumstance, there’s no reason why you can’t take your interviews with the product creator and use that as a bonus. You know, you could do — you could set up your bonus page, you could have a review of the product and say, you know I just did a 30-minute or 60-minute interview, he gives away some amazing tips how you can maximize the product that you are potentially gonna buy. You’ll get this interview. So, it really depends — I mean, there’s so many different ways to go about getting bonuses. I will kind of let you in on the first one-time offer, it’s called our Bonus Vaults. We have about 250 bonus products that you can utilize for bonus, so for offers. So, everything is categorized by you know, if it’s social media and SEO, depending on what type of product you’re promoting. You can handpick a few bonuses out of there and you can give them to your list.

Mike: Have you found that giving a certain amount of bonuses — for example, if I go in and use that one of those bonuses that you’re providing on your OTO, is it – has it been more effective to you to just use like on bonus or use like 4 or 10 or let them choose from a list of bonuses. What in your experience has worked the best?

Mark: Well, I think it all depends on the quality of your bonus. So, sometimes I’ll just send out one bonus but that one bonus is really powerful, has a lot of impact, has a lot of good stuff in there, especially if it’s like software. If I’m giving away software that has higher perceived value, so you know I can get away with just giving out one bonus. If there’s you know, maybe like a few eboooks or like one video training series or whatever, maybe I’ll give out two or three. So, it really just depends. You know, I found a sweet spot of giving away three different bonuses but I mean, you can give away one bonus and just really focus in on what that’s gonna do for your customer and that’s fine as well.

Mike: Okay. And I think there’s another one-time offer in there as well.

Mark: Yeah, it’s our — it’s our six-figure mastermind coaching program. So you know, we’ve released this six months ago, I believe. And we keep bringing on new members and members are loving it. They’re getting great results from it. It’s a core training where you are gonna learn everything in-depth about product creation. affiliate marketing, everything I’m doing in my business, as wells as — there’s engagement factor to the coaching where you’re — you know, there’s a Facebook that you belong to. There’s a blog, there’s a forum in there, there’s video Q&A where you can ask questions and I’ll do kind of, this type of video style answering. So, it’s a little bit more interactive and it’s kind of a — it’s group coaching, so you can get a little bit of feedback from me and you can ask question along the way because as we know, if you’re a buyer yourself and you’re trying to figure it all out on your own, you’re only gonna get so far or it’s gonna take ten time as long to get there.

Mike: My last question for you is — okay, so I’m gonna mail this out my people today. And they’re gonna see this interview, what kind of bonus would you recommend me giving them to go along with this?

Mark: Ah, you put me on the spot.
Mike: Yeah, I put you on the spot.
Mark: Well. Hm, I’m trying to think for you. So, you’re — well, tell me about your list first and then I can tell you a product.

Mike: Most of the people on my list are interested in doing the same things that I’m doing. They’re interested in building a list, building an audience, just basically in making some extra income online. So, there’s gonna be probably a less — a smaller group of people interested in your product than necessarily in an encompassing theory or a method of making money online. So, if I was gonna help — I’ll help you answer the question a little bit. If I was gonna think of a bonus to give to go along with this, probably it will be something in the lines of list building or in kind of in building some kind of an audience. I know that within your bonus pack, is there anything from — in your bonus pack, that would go along with that?

Mark: Yeah, there is. There’s some list building, there’s some traffic generations, there’s SEO. I mean, there’s so many different ways to drive traffic and obviously traffic is what fuels the internet. It’s how you build a list, you drive people to a squeeze page. So I mean, that can answer your question right there. Maybe, if you have some squeeze page templates. Maybe, even if it’s just one video you talking to your list, like you are right now and explaining the list building secrets that you’re using. You know, it’s something that will really relevant, because you’re so good at doing interviews and you do that a lot, maybe talk about how you engage with the product creators. How you find them, how you’re able to actually get them to talk to you. So, maybe something like that would be interested — or interesting. I think, since so many of your subscribers I’m sure watch your interviews and I’m sure they’re very engaged with it, try to let them know how you go about doing it.

Mike: Good answer, Mark. Good answer. I think, for me personally, I have to think of the best kind of bonuses. And I’m not an expert at this by any means of providing bonuses. But if I was gonna say what would be the best kinda thing — If I was gonna get something from you, If I was a subscriber to Mark Thompson’s email list, something along the lines of exactly what you just said. Something that’s personally from them explaining something from their point-of-view, because let’s face it, a lot of the stuff that we’re talking about, a lot of these products that people sell, a lot of the methods anyways, are things that if people want, they can kind of find a lot of it for free through like Google searches or if they look hard enough, they can find a lot of these things. But the thing that they can’t find is that they can’t find Mark Thompson’s take on it. They can’t find Mike from Maine’s, Mike Thomas’s take on these things. So, I think perhaps the best kind of bonuses would be — like, I was thinking for this, maybe me actually sitting down and going through the product and saying how I would personally use it to — in my business. I think, for me, that would be the best kind of bonus.

Mark: Yeah. I think you’re right and I think it’s always important to play to your strengths. Obviously, you don’t mind getting you know, on video. Some people are afraid to be on video and that’s fine. I mean, obviously that was something that I’ve overcome. I never like video but I got more comfortable with it as you — you know, just like anything, practice makes perfect. And well, I’m not perfect at it but you know, you get better at it. And so, you know play to your strengths. If you’re better at putting together a little rapport or if you’re better at maybe doing the screen share video and explaining something on screen share, do it that way. So, play to your strengths. Do what you know how to do best and that’s — and you’ll be fine. So.

Mike: Awesome. Is there anything that we didn’t cover today that you wanted to mention before we wrap it up? Mark: No, I don’t think so. I mean, we’re coming closer, we’re launching in just like an hour or so, so I’m just —

Mike: I’ll let you go. I’ll let you go. Get on to your launch. And make sure everything run smoothly. Mark, again thank you for coming back on the show today. I really appreciate it.

Mark: Anytime.

Mike: I hope you enjoy the interview with Mark today. if you’re interested in checking out Bonus Press, go to mikefrommaine.com/bonuspress and I haven’t figured out exactly if I’m gonna be able to include this to give you an example. So, it’s — I’m pre-recording this pre-launch but perhaps, that link will be going to an example of me using Bonus Press. No promises yet but I’m gonna try to get that set up. If not, it’s just gonna be a link to the sales page but if I can get it done, it will go right to an example of Bonus Press. Thank you for watching and I’ll see you all on Monday.

  1. Mike, the best bonus for your list would be a product that teaches how to make money by selling your own product and give bonuses to the affiliates in order to make more money, or as you’ve said: how to build a list but this is a bit more complicated since you can’t just build a list from nothing and without any purpose…. you need to start somewhere.

    And this just poped into my head right now: how to make money with an affiliate website. There you can tackle the list building subject using the traffic that you get to the website and say that you need to use bonuses to increase the amount of cash that you make off the commissions.

    1. Nino,

      I’m still struggling with giving bonuses. Personally, I’m not enticed by all the silly bonuses that people give, but I think I might be a rarity. I’d rather just receive a quality product without bonuses than an “ok” product with a ton of little bonuses. I think what a lot of people do now is just call aspects of their product “bonuses” as a psychological trick to make their offer seem more attractive…like the customer is getting more for their money.

  2. Good Interview Mike, I think that the best bonuses you can give are the bonuses where your customer gets perceived value and that you can specifically funnel that free bonuses to deliver another sale in the future. (with of course another bonus)

    1. Bryan,

      I agree. That’s the smart way to give a bonus…a lead in to another product 🙂

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