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Everybody tells you the same thing: broaden your product line by offering “OPP” (Other People’s Products) as their affiliate.

It seems easy: just run the e-mail promotion they give you to your e-list, sit back, let them handle the sales, and collect a nice commission check.

But it’s not quite that simple. I have been burned several times by not performing my “due diligence” on any affiliate offer a partner or colleague asked me to promote to my e-list.

Here are 5 things you can do to ensure that your affiliate promotions won’t displease or upset your valued subscribers:

1 – Read the e-mail.

Don’t just distribute the promotional e-mail the marketer gives you to your list. Read it carefully.

On one recent promotion, the marketer gave me an e-mail to send to my e-list. It was written in my voice and talked about the success I had achieved using the product.

I had reviewed the product but had not started to use it yet. So it was a complete lie. And I don’t lie to my list. Others apparently don’t have a problem making up stuff, but I do.

2 – Read the landing page.

Read the entire landing page that the e-mail links to. Make sure you are comfortable with the wording and the content.

Recently I read the e-mail my joint venture partner gave me to send out but not the landing page it linked to. Turns out, that landing page was full of typos and errors, and several of my subscribers chastised me for it.

3 – Review the product.

I am often asked to endorse a book I have not read or even seen. When I tell the joint venture partner I can’t do it, they often offer to send me the intro and chapter one.

Sorry, that’s not good enough. If I don’t read the whole thing word for word, I at least need to skim through it. Otherwise, how do I know what I am recommending to my list is any good.

4 – Consider the source.

Different Internet marketers have different degrees of ethics and promotional practices.

I pride myself on being an ethical and honest marketer. Many other online entrepreneurs out there use a far greater degree of hype in marketing than I do.

When I sell one of their products as an affiliate, I am in effect endorsing them. If my subscribers have a problem with me endorsing that marketer, they will surely let me know it.

5 – Make sure you understand the offer.

Recently I offered a marketer’s inexpensive special report to my list as an affiliate.

I didn’t realize the marketer would focus on upselling report buyers immediately to a very expensive product, and some of my subscribers were offended by the upsell.

In their minds, your subscribers don’t differentiate between your marketing, products, and offers and those you promote as an affiliate.

Therefore, products you promote as an affiliate must be as useful, valuable, and ethical as your own. Otherwise, you will have unhappy customers on your hands.

Bob Bly is the author of “World’s Best Copywriting Secrets” and has written copy for more than 100 companies including IBM, Boardroom, Medical Economics and AT&T. He is the author of more than 75 books and a columnist for Target Marketing, Early To Rise and The Writer. McGraw-Hill calls him “America’s top copywriter”.

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