Tell me about your company?
I started my business in November of 1998 as a freelance web designer, and kept it that way until early 2005. To make a very long story short, in 2005 I quit my day job and was a fulltime programmer for an affiliate in London and other agencies in my local area. Four years later, I’m now a fulltime affiliate, and only doing programming for myself.
How did you get into affiliate marketing?
I probably made my first affiliate link way back in the late ’90’s. However, I never took it seriously. Sometime in 2006 – 2007 I got into datafeeds & AdSense arbitrage. When that died out, I started really looking into PPC to CPA offers and found limited success. Then in the summer of 2008 I was involved with the Black Ink Project, lead by Jeremy Palmer, and found true success. Approximately 6 months after completing the Black Ink Project, I fired all of my clients and have been doing affiliate marketing fulltime ever since.
What was your biggest challenge getting into affiliate marketing?
The multiple failures & lack of focus. I’d work on a niche, fail at it, then move on – sometimes after a couple of days. There’s no lack of ideas in this industry, but I’m sure if I stuck with some of my failures, I would’ve found success in them. Even today, I probably fail more than half of the time. In the beginning, it was more like 9 out of 10 times ended in failure.
What are the main things merchants do that you wish they wouldn’t?
As a PPC-er, my biggest problem is merchants who have PPC rules that don’t enforce them.
What are the main things affiliates do that you wish they wouldn’t?
Scamming users is a big problem these days. Because of this, our industry will soon be regulated by some government entity, unless we crack down on things ourselves.
Where do you see growth in the affiliate field?
Offline sales and local marketing is going to continue to grow. As an affiliate, if I can do online advertising for a local merchant, they’ll see increased sales and I’ll be able to be paid on a performance basis. Plus, I can share my tactics with others because they’re not in my geographic market, so I see this sector of affiliate marketing growing very quickly.
What do you do to improve the world?
Boy, that’s a tough one… I’d say I focus on my family first, trying to give them everything they need and spend as much time with them as possible. I also try to make my community a better place by giving to local non-profits and simply watching out for my neighbors. I’m also a Cub Scout leader and try to regularly give blood (which still can’t be produced in labs, so if you can, donate!)
What do you do that is green?
For starters, I work at home 🙂 In addition, all of the power that I buy is “green” (http://www.greenmountainenergy.com/newyork/ ), all of the lights in the house are either CFL or LED, we compost, I have a solar heater on my pool, and collect rainwater in a 55-gallon rain barrel to water the gardens.
What is one thing about you that not many people know?
I spend about 9 months a year planning for Christmas. Seriously. We have a rather large light display, synchronized to music and broadcast over a local FM radio station. Videos of past years are available in my YouTube channel (http://www.youtube.com/user/esnagel ). This year is much bigger than last year, as we move onto my neighbor’s lawn.
What is on your iPod?
Barenaked Ladies, Beatles, Big & Rich, Guns & Roses, Queen, Shaggy, Taylor Swift, a few episodes of LOST and some Pixar shorts (for the kids)
What’s your favorite book?
“The Richest Man in Babylon”
What are your contact details (email, company, blog, facebook, myspace, forums etc) ?
Eric Nagel & Associates, Inc.
What events do you go to?
Affiliate Summit (for networking), BarCamp Buffalo (to get out of the house & occasionally speak)
Who would recommend you and why?
Jeremy Palmer – he showed me how to make a quality site and earn a living from it.
Mike Buechele – all around great guy, and not a bad roommate (we shared a room at ASE09)
Jason Rubacky (Share A Sale) – he’ll drop what he’s doing to help you.
Ian Fernando – full of fresh ideas & cuts through the BS
Logan Thompson – although fairly new to the industry, already making a name for himself. Great guy
I’m sure there’s others… sorry to everyone I forgot!
What one thing can people do to help you?
Play nice – online, in business, and in life.