It’s great to make an affiliate sale. We all start with ONE sale and grow from there. But what’s even better is repeat sales and long-term buyers and commissions. Today, I’m joined by a very special guest to share how he leads his followers, creates trust, and lowers returns, which all lead to repeat buyers and long-term commissions.
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Previous Episodes of The Affiliate Guy
Affiliate Marketing Lesson: Shifting From Promoting Free Content To A Paid Product
Book Launch Party: An Interview with Matt About Turn Your Passions Into Profits
Special Episode: Highlights from My Whirlwind Book Tour
The Untold Stories from Turn Your Passions Into Profits (Behind The Scenes Peek at My Book)
Ten Resolutions for Affiliate Marketers and Affiliate Managers
2023 Affiliate Marketing Predictions
Creating Your Ideal Customer Avatar: How to Get Crystal Clear on Your Audience Part 2
How to Increase Your Commissions by Guiding Your Followers & Creating Repeat Buyers with Dave Gambrill
It’s great to make an affiliate sale. We all start with one sale and grow from there. But what’s even better is repeat sales and long term buyers and longterm commissions.
Today, I’m joined by a very special guest to share how he leads his followers, creates trust, and lowers returns which all lead to repeat buyers and long term commissions.
Welcome back, I am so excited about this episode today because I’m joined by my friend Dave Gambrill, who is literally the only affiliate marketer that I actively follow on social media and whose emails I open. And I love the guy.
We’ve known each other for years, been friends for a long time, and I did an interview with him a couple of years ago, and it was actually a live video that was open only to our insider members. But I wanted you guys to hear what he has to say about his affiliate promos.
There’s some really, really cool stuff that he shares in this interview. I think I say it. Dave was probably one of the only repeat, second repeat person we ever had for our insiders club.
I think he’s probably one of a handful five repeat guests, so pretty exclusive company. And you’ll hear why. The guy is just a powerhouse, and he’s one of those people who far out what is it? Out fights his weight class or whatever. Out punches his weight.
He’s constantly up at the top of leaderboards when the numbers suggest that he shouldn’t be, when he’s outperforming his list size. And I love guests like that because they show you hear his and you go, oh, well, he made $30,000 promoting that. I could never make $30,000 right now.
Well, but if you take the principles and apply what he teaches, you can make $3,000 or four or five or whatever. You know, yeah, he has a larger list than a lot of people, but it’s not nearly as big as some of the people that he’s beating. He’s making $30,000 in a promo.
When somebody with a list five times as big, he’s making $20,000. Who do you want to learn from? I want to learn from Dave. Proven strategies today, proven tips for lowering returns. So getting, you know, yeah, you go out and you bust your button, you sell ten, and then three people return it.
Well, what role do you play in that? We talked about that with Dave today. Increasing trust. He wants his followers to trust him. He wants to be a leader for his followers. We talked about that in some of the episodes where I shared some excerpts from the book.
And ultimately, when you have lower returns, when you have increased trust, when you’re a leader for your followers. That’s what creates those repeat buyers. That’s what creates those long term commissions.
So super excited about this episode. Let’s cut right to my chat with Dave Gambrill. As you can see behind you, we are going to unleash some awesome today.
I am joined today by Dave Gambrill, I believe only our second ever repeat insider profile here in Amen. He’s got a lot of stuff to share because we had him on last time. This was a couple of years ago, maybe almost three years ago.
And he shared some cool things that he was doing, some principles. Guys, he’s codified this now. I’m pretty sure. Dave, like what you told me before you went live, you had not kind of codified this back then.
And guys, this framework that he’s going to be sharing today, I am super excited. He’s going to share some just some cool stuff. Guys, this is somebody there aren’t many people.
Here’s what I’ll say, dave, if I want to make your head expand to the size of the screen here, there are many people that I follow. Like, I won’t mention names, but we know who they are, the Internet marketer types that we’re typically going to follow.
You and I probably overlap 60, 70%, right? Most of the people watching this, you overlap with me 50 or 60%, probably. Dave is the only one that I actually have notifications turned on for. All right?
Dave is the only one whose emails or whose Facebook posts I actually see, meaning 100% of them. I think he knows that because I probably comment on, like, 90% of them whatever.
There’s a reason for that, guys. I want to see what he’s doing because it’s always creative. It’s always innovative. Guys, I’m just super excited with his emails. He’s the only one his emails. There’s a rule where they go to my folder.
I’ll tell you this, Dave. Everyone else’s, they go to the look at those when I get a chance, which means about monthly, that’s where they go. Yours, they go to them. It’s called the mat needs reply folder. And that’s the ones that I check daily because I want to see what the heck’s going on with Dave.
So I’m super excited about this, guys.
Matt: Welcome, Dave. That long intro there.
Dave: Thanks, Matt. That was awesome! And in terms of growing my head any bigger, please don’t do that. My wife has already said that I need to get a bigger door made just to get out of my office sometimes for how big my head is so.
Matt: We all have those moments. I had one the other day where, you know, guy introduced me. I was speaking at a virtual event, and he introduced me. And I mean, as soon as he finished, I just literally he was like, welcome, Matt, and I just started laughing. What could I possibly share at this point that could supersede what you’ve already shared about me. He’s like, Tell us your story. And I’m like, you already did, so well, welcome, buddy.
I want to start with kind of your just philosophy on affiliate promotions, this framework, so to speak, that you were sharing with me, because I think it’s super important, and I’m just going to have you share that, and then we’ll talk about that because I have some thoughts on this lot. I think it’ll I don’t know, maybe you already you’ll see them. We’ll see. Okay.
Dave: Yeah. So thanks for the opportunity. I’m glad to be back with your audience. I think the fundamental thing that we didn’t discuss, but I think everybody has to have this train of thought when they’re going into this is the old idea that Zig Ziggler talked about so many times, about helping people get what they want. You can get anything you want, right?
So the basis, the foundation for what I do has been that. So anything that I’m doing, my Facebook group, my podcast, any of it coming on here and talking to your audience is, how can I help people?
How can I be interested instead of trying to be interesting? How can I be interested in serving and helping people in whatever niche it is that I’m serving in?
So that’s the primary piece. But what you were saying in my intro about kind of how I’ve codified it over the last few years and have a framework, what I’ve discovered is that people need three basic things to be successful, really, in any endeavor in life, but especially online, and it revolves around mindset, skill set, and tool set in that order.
Because if you wanted to be a master carpenter and you didn’t have any idea what a master carpenter does, you didn’t have a skill set, but I gave you all the tools.
You probably not only wouldn’t make anything but you would probably hurt yourself. And that’s what I see people doing online, right? They come to me and ask, what’s the best tool for this? And I’m like, well, what are you trying to do?
And I’d be happy to give you an affiliate link for whatever tool I have, but help me understand what you’re trying to do. And oftentimes they haven’t even thought about that. And so right there, that helps me give a more thoughtful response to them.
And hopefully when they get whatever software they’re going to get, they actually stick and stay with it because they’re successful with it, and that helps all of us.
I don’t want to get a one month commission on that thing, right? I want them to be there forever and continue to get paid. So really, I think it comes down to mindset, skill set, tools.
So as I’ve been thinking about the things that I’ve been promoting the last few years, they really fall into those categories. And I would say those big marquee courses, you know, those $2,000 $3,000 courses.
I would put them both in the category of mindset and skillset. All of them will tell you about the skill set piece. But I don’t know about you. If you’ve gone through any of those courses, you know, that the first module.
Sometimes I call it Module Zero. Sometimes I call it Module One. Sometimes I call it the intro is all about mindset. So that’s how I’ve been thinking about it.
So I’ve been thinking about, okay, what are the mindset and skill set things that I want to promote and talk about and teach and have affiliate relationships for?
And then once people have that, clearly going back to the carpentry example, it doesn’t matter if you’re really great carpenter if you don’t have the tools to do what you need to do.
And so once they kind of have the foundational piece of that, then I say, okay, now that you’re doing that, I was promoting Amy Porterfield’s Digital Course Academy, right?
And I would lump that course, that’s a $2,000 course roughly into the skill set piece and the mindset piece because clearly all of these courses, those good courses anyway, that you and I promote, we start with the mindset.
But I knew as people were doing that and Amy does it in her own course because she’s smart. She’s are talking about the different tools that people will need to make that happen.
So as people were signing up for that, I was saying, hey, as a special bonus, I will give you a 30 day trial to Kajabi. You can’t get that any other place except through an affiliate. I’ll give you that and I’ll give you all these Kajabi bonuses or whatever.
So I rolled the tool set piece into a bonus package that had to do with the skill set, right? So then they were kind of getting the whole thing, including the mindset.
And then clearly I helped them with the mindset. I will do office hours calls or one on one calls, a couple of those maybe as a bonus, but that kind of helps across those three categories of mindset, skill set and tool set.
Matt: Yeah, it makes total sense. I kind of think in a way, like “if you have tools without skills, you’re just going to fail.”
Like you said, you might even hurt yourself. You give me all the rock climbing tools. Actually, I probably not going to hurt myself because I’m not going to get up more than about 4ft. So I’ll twist an ankle at the worst.
But then skills without belief usually means you’re just never going to start all these skills and you just don’t believe and you don’t have the right mindset.
So you end up with one of those people who just keeps looking at the skills. You know you got the skills and then you’re. Either way, it really results in some form of failure.
Dave: Yeah. And if I could jump in there, this might help your audience around reducing the churn for some other people in some of these ongoing recurring revenue type affiliate relationships.
Dave: I’m sure you’ve heard that there are four phases that you go through learning something new. There’s unconscious incompetence, meaning you don’t know what you’re doing, but you’re really excited about it right?
Anytime you’re trying something new, like, I want to go do this new thing, but you just really don’t know what’s happening. But then very quickly you hit the conscious incompetence phase, meaning you now know that you don’t know what you’re doing. And this is going to be hard and it’s going to require work. And that’s where most everybody quits.
So as I’m helping support people that are doing these courses or going with these tools, I know they’re going to hit that spot. So I kind of double down on loving on them. If you would like making more resources, having office hours available kind of during that phase.
And then there’s conscious competence. People know what they’re doing, but they have to think about it. And then there’s unconscious competence where you don’t even have to think about it.
I’m not thinking about our conversations that I have not done any homework on this because I’ve been preparing for this conversation for 48 years of my life. I’m okay with that.
So as I think about some of these things, a lot of this mindset and belief and all of these other things, I know a lot of people I did when I first heard about some of this stuff, want to be like, oh, whatever, that’s dumb.
But seriously, if you don’t figure this stuff out, not only for yourself, but for the people that you’re promoting things to like if you’re like me and you want to sell something to someone and have them have success and have them come back and ask you for the next recommendation or continue to be on that software thing for life, So you keep getting a commission, then you have to understand this stuff and help people through this process.
Because then they will tell other people, hey, go get Matt’s affiliate link, or go ask Dave for his affiliate link like they helped me. And so really, I guess the other fundamental piece of this is I’m playing the long game.So yeah, I like the short term commissions.They’re great, but I’m in this for the long term.
Matt: Yeah. And I know for me, when I think about it, I want to dive into that mindset piece real quick. We’ll come back to something. But I think for me it makes sense that if you have the tools but not the mindset, if you have the skill but not the mindset, that makes sense.
But I kind of think of it more as a circle. It’s like if you have the mindset, but not the tools. I believe I can have the best landing page in the world. Okay?
You got to have the skills to build it. You either got a skill and even then you sort of have to have a tool, like an HTML design. Back in the old days, we had to handcu those things. I remember.
Matt: So you either have to have that skill or you have to have the tool. I believe I can create the greatest lead magnet. You still at least have to have a tool. You got to have like, Microsoft Word or Google Drive. You got to know how to Google Doc. You got to know how to use it might even help to have canva to design some images.
And that requires a certain level of skill. Maybe the skill is hiring somebody. You got to have that skill. There’s all types of things and it kind of works in that cycle. And I think about, like you mentioned that module zero.
And I was just like, I was picturing it. I’m thinking all of our courses, no product, no problem. The very first module, we called the Buteye Module and it’s the five biggest excuses people make.
My audience doesn’t buy anything, but I don’t know how to sell those type of things, but I don’t have an email list. Like, no, we get those out of the way as soon as that module is over.
People fall into one of two camps. I still don’t believe. So they asked for a refund. Cool. I can’t help you anymore. I tried. Or I believe, let’s learn how. And they, those people never return. They finish module.
And the statistics show 99 point something percent of the people who finish the first module don’t return the course. The return rate of people who don’t finish the first module is like 30%. It’s really high.
So I want to go back to something you just said just real quick, that you’re really looking for ways to take that person. Let’s look at two things. Let’s look at there’s two sides to this.
I think we all instinctively understand that the person who buys the software and most software is it’s a month or a year or whatever, you know, it’s something a month that you want to keep them in past that four to six month point.
Because if you do, they’re probably going to stay with them for ten years and you’re going to make a crap ton of money. We get that. That makes logical sense. We can talk about some strategies around that.
But I want to focus on that strategy of if I help them succeed with recommendation A, they’re more likely to come to me for recommendations B-C-D and E.
And I think that’s something I see in your audience because you don’t have a massive audience and you’re not selling 500 units of product launch formula, but you’re selling like, 20 30 40 to a lot of the same group of 50 to 100 people. That means they trust you.
Like, what are some of the ways that you do that above and beyond what you just said, with kind of helping them in that conscious incompetence phase?
Dave: Yeah, that’s a great question. And you’re right, I don’t have a huge audience. My email list is a little over 100,000, but I don’t send everything to all of them all the time, right? It’s segmented.
And my Facebook group is only 3600 people, not a ton of people listen to my podcast, but people that do. And I think I learned this from you was I try to indoctrinate them into being action takers and link clickers, right?
So it’s like, get them in the habit of doing these things. And so I always have this call to action about go try this, go check this out, go click on this, whatever.
But I try to get them some quick wins on whatever it is they’re doing. And I think I actually learned that from recent market troy, she was talking about how to get people a quick win right on the thank you page of what people walked into stuff.
So that’s what I try to do with a lot of these folks. When they go with a new software, they do something like the bonuses that I provide, which are all automated for the most part. If you sign up for this, something automatically gets triggered and they get some training course for me or some hand holding for me, a little board that will help them through it or whatever.
I want them to get a quick win because going back to the mindset piece, they still don’t believe they can do it. And so if I can get them a couple of quick wins on that platform or a couple of quick wins in that course, then they start to believe.
And this is the old confidence competence loop, right, of like, oh my gosh, now they have more confidence that they could actually do it, and they start to believe that they have the competence to do it, and so they just continue to do that.
So I really focus a lot of time out of the gate, even with my email sequences, they come way more frequently about, hey, make sure you do this, make sure you do the onboarding. Like they have a really good onboarding. Did you schedule?
Like Kajabi has these things, customer Success Manager calls, they offer them to everybody that becomes part of their platform. And I’m like, did you schedule that call? That is so important because you can get somebody at their team to walk through what you are trying to do and give you the best way to do it for you.
And people are like, I didn’t do that. I’m like, you need to do that. And so I found that when people take those steps and I help them get a quick win and then they have success on the platform. Then they come back to me and say, okay, what’s next? Or what else do I need to use?
And more importantly, I think they bring their friends and those trusted people that come to me now I don’t even know who I am, but I’m barring the credibility of their friend. If I continue with that cycle and I say, hey, what’s up new person, how can I help you?
And then I point them towards the right things, then that just cycle just continues. And now I’ve got that thing of the ripple effect or butterfly effect of like I’m not just one ripple out with like a handful of people. I’m now like five and ten ripples out with hundreds of people.
And how do I know this? Because I ask a question when people join my Facebook group, how did you hear about me? Or how did you hear about this group?
And people will often say like, Matt McWilliams invited me and he said you’re the smartest dude he’s ever heard of before, or something like that, right? Like some crazy accolade. I’m like…!
Matt: That happens like daily, doesn’t it?
Dave: Right, yeah. About you in particular. They’ll come to my group and just say like, hey, somebody referred me and they said you’re really good with this or you helped them a lot with that, whatever. I’m like, okay, cool.
So then I just continue on that trend. But again, this is like playing the long game. I’m not trying to get a quick, I’m not going to try to throw any program out of the bus here. So I need to be very delicate of how I share about what I’m going to share here.
But there have been some promotions in the recent years of platforms that were promising everything and people were out there promoting it and trying to make a lot of money up front.
But I looked at the platform and I thought, this thing is not ready. They’re trying to alpha tests, not even beta test or crowdsource for their platform.There’s no way I’m getting behind us.
And a lot of people in the space did. I chose not to. And not only did I usually stay quiet on those things, in this case I actually spoke up a little bit and I said, hey, any of you looking at this?
All I’m going to tell you is take a really good look because I’m not getting behind it. And that’s all I’m going to say. So I think there’s been some situations.
Matt: I know who you’re talking about.
Dave: I’m sure you do.
Matt: Because this came up like two weeks ago in one of these and same thing and he had to chat with me. So I’m going to ask you after work, privately.
Matt: This is fascinating. Okay, so full disclosure, insiders, I don’t always know the theme of these conversations.
I find people who I’ve seen doing something amazing, and I just wanted to bring again, what are you doing? But we found our theme.
This is all about increasing your commissions by getting repeat customers. This is all about going that extra mile to serve people and not just be like, hey, here’s an affiliate offer. Peace out. Homie.
You said something there that we teach this at a level. I’d probably say, like, a fourth grade level. Just like a master’s degree level, guys.Okay?
So it’s about yeah, you don’t have to fulfill the product. Yeah, you don’t have to do the customer service. These are all the things we love about affiliate marketing.
You don’t have to pay the credit card processing. You don’t have to to hire the customer service reps. You don’t have to do any of that. But can you go one step? One step mile? If you think about the phrase the extra mile, it didn’t say, like, the extra marathon. It gets just one more mile.
There’s a whole history lesson behind that I won’t get into. But you’re helping people succeed with the things that you’re referring them to. And you mentioned.
Have you set up? Have you done the onboarding? Like, you don’t have to do that. That’s not in the description of being an affiliate.
And they should do a good job of that, but it’s not that they do a bad job of it. It’s, you know, Kajabi, for example, sometimes their emails are just going to the promo tab, but your emails don’t because they’ve been on your email list for three and a half years.
Matt: And you following up. It’s like, oh, yeah. And even if let’s take a hypothetical, here is the cool thing, and I want to learn more about the strategies you’re using to do that. My hypothesis is, even if after a month with Kajabi, just using an example, I’m not picking on them a month with Kajabi, they still go, you know what?
I don’t like Kajabi. It’s just not for me. But man, that Dave went above and beyond. They love you even more. You didn’t make any money. But guess what?
They are ten times more likely to buy the next thing. Ten times more likely to refer you to somebody. They might even refer somebody to Kajabi through your affiliate link. Why would they? No, because it wasn’t for them.
Matt: It might be for Joe. And that’s the beauty of this. So what are some of the things specifically, like, that you’re doing that really work again, just that are making people love you and going that extra mile with these affiliate promotions to make sure your buyers really succeed?
Dave: Yeah, I think to put it succinctly, it’s trust. So I’m helping build a lot of trust between us and going back to that example I was given before of the not so good thing that I would not get behind and I saw other people in no space do it.
You know, I drew a line in the sand for my audience and like, let them know, like, beware, look out. And I had a ton of people come back to me and say, man, I really respect you for that. You could have gone to the bank.
They knew, like, I could have cashed in big time. I could have been on the leaderboard of that thing, right. I could have had anybody in their brother buying it. But I was like and so there’s been some times where I’ve said, like, I just kind of shake my head.
I have this thing of like, I’m not going to actively throw any company under the bus and talk negatively, so I won’t unless they really egregious about it. But if people bring it up or they ask me, especially when I’m doing Facebook Live, they’ll just see me shake my head or whatever, and they get it. And so I think that’s one piece.
But the second piece about getting people through the next phase or getting them establishing that trust. There’s a really fascinating thing I’ve found with software in general. And it’s this idea of if people are unfamiliar with that space, let’s say page builders, lead pages, click funnels, drop funnels, whatever.
I have found that I have my opinion on them, and I’ve done some research, and there’s people in my community that say, like, oh, this one’s easier, or this one’s more customizable or robust or whatever.
But I have found when people are kind of new to this space, which my audience tends to be, a vast majority of them don’t like the first one that they try, no matter what it is, but they love the second one, isn’t it?
Dave: And so what it comes down to is this idea around, okay, they went through that conscious, incompetence phase of being really frustrated with that other platform, and then they were like, okay, let me learn some things.
And they learned some things, but they didn’t like it. So then they try this other thing, and it seems so much easier, right? And it’s because they’ve tried this other thing.
And so I try to explain this to people. Like, I am as transparent as possible when people are going into these things. And to your example before about maybe it wasn’t for them, I will say that, too.
I’ll say, listen, ultimately, it comes down to, in a lot of cases, whether or not you like the user interface, whether or not you can handle it, whether you like the color scheme, whatever. This is like trying on a pair of shoes.
I’ll narrow it down for you that you need some running shoes and you’re trying to run your first five k all right, here’s two or three to pick from, but pick one and go run with it go.
Like, the little kids would try on shoes in the mall and do even still have shopping malls. They would try on shoes like I did when I was little, and then it would be like, how fast do they make me? And I would run out the store and run back in.
Matt: It’s got to be the shoes Mars.
Dave: Yeah. So I explained that to them, and I’m very transparent and open and honest and all those things. And so I think what happens is I do a little bit of hugs, handshakes, and high fives, like getting them past that kind of disgruntled phase of like, oh, my gosh, this is tough.
And then once they get past there, then what I do is I ask them to share their success with my audience, and I give them full range to promote whatever it is they’re doing.
So I’ll say, hey, yeah, you could come to my group to talk about whatever you’re doing, but I would love for you to explain your thought process about how you tried this tool and why you like it.
And often I don’t ask them to say this, but often they will say, like, yeah, Dave has never led me astray or Dave pointing me in the right direction. And now I have a course, and I just made my 1st using whatever this tool is because of Dave. And thank you. Dave like, okay, there you go.
So that helps with social proof. So many of you in the audience, if you don’t know me, you’ve never heard of me before. I really geek out on the psychology of marketing.
And so one of the books I know, Matt, you probably haven’t read in your bookshelf there, influenced The Psychology of Persuasion by Dr. Robert Childini. Most of the stuff I do is coming out of there. Like, how is it building one of those now? Seven levels of influence.
Matt: You interviewed him recently on your podcast, didn’t you?
Dave: Yeah, I’m on my podcast when the new version of his book came out.