Whitey - 4:28 am on Nov 26, 2010 (gmt 0)
The one thing that hit's me is that we don't need Google - and therefore neither do affiliates. Now that sounds weird because for most of us that's where our business originates , and like a monkey's hand in the jar , we can't release ourselves - to our potential collective demise.
But any affiliate ( or other site / business owner ) - consider this. In 2000 you spent your whole day accessing information , surfing on the web. Now you don't.
If you're like me , you now have a routine of a small number of sites you routinely visit. You have a bunch of friends / acquaintances you regularly communicate with and network through . You know where to go to get the info you want and who to ask if you don't.
Then consider this , I recently helped a Uni graduate with an e-marketing strategy document - nothing mind boggling or beyond ABC for most experienced webmasters, marketers and business owners. Word of mouth , in their research sample of over 500 persons , is still the overwhelming method of communication. IP based methods simply facilitate. Phone , Facebook , Email , Twitter , Linked In , networking meetings and all the traditional methods are still the stickiness that keeps things together. and people are lazy - why surf to find the result when you can ask someone.
Now you've found it , or you can find someone who knows. The power of referral is the most potent form of marketing, and brand is most often facilitated via this. Google doesn't build brand - people and their experiences do.
How often do people go to a restaurant because of the internet. Hmmm - it's usually because you've watched people gorging happily through the window or been referred. Online directories may only trigger a minority of the actual business to the majority of such places or experiences.
My guess is that Google is as nervous about it's future earnings as affiliates are about having to respond to changed methods of marketing focus away from pure SEO . If affiliates think they have a problem , spare a thought for Google who need to keep increasing their share price infinitum.
The people have the information - now they want what they've lost - good service and human contact.
We're all in this together :)