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Affiliate Summit West: My Introduction to the World of Affiliate Marketing

Jeff Hall

Posted on February 11, 2020 14:10

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I mentioned a few columns ago I was setting out to learn about affiliate marketing. I recently attended Affiliate Summit West in Las Vegas, and now I'm ready to tell you more. The subject is a tad complicated; I'll use as a case study in an attempt to simplify.

I attended something called Affiliate Summit West (ASW) in Las Vegas, recently.  It was a huge gathering of individuals -- over 6,000 -- interested in the world of affiliate marketing.

Affiliate marketing is much like what the term implies.  You affiliate, or join together, with others for mutual economic benefit.

Advertisers and service providers work with website publishers to help them grow traffic and monetize -- via advertising.  At ASW, advertisers can find more outlets for their ads.

ASW: A mix of workshops, exhibitors and networking.


There is quite a bit of math involved when it comes to affiliate marketing.  Stating things in very simple terms, if you spend a dollar on expanding your site's traffic and get $3 back in new advertising revenue as a result, that's a deal.

Ads you run on your site might not pay at all -- until someone clicks through and buys something.  Then the payout can be quite lucrative.

At ASW, there were experts discussing how to maximize your impact on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and other platforms. 

If your site or blog specializes in a certain type of content (e.g., travel, health, financial products, fashion), you can line up advertisers of the same flavor so your content matches up nicely with the ads.

At, we cover lots of topics -- politics, football, spirituality, movies, fitness -- you name it, we've got it. 

Right now we use an advertising placement service that tracks your clicking behavior.  So you and I will likely see very different ads when visiting 

If you are a young female, you might see ads for blue jeans; as a male geezer, I might see ads for retirement planning.


The science behind advertising placement is very personalized.  The advertisers know who you are, your demographics, products you like, content you like to read. 

So the ads you see correspond to that.

If you're an advertiser, the matchmaking works in reverse: If you sell golf-related products, your ads will magically appear before those who play golf.

I'm kind of old-fashioned.  I think golf-related ads should always appear on our golf page and car ads should always appear on our car page. 

Even if you drive a BMW, I think it's good for you to be exposed to Honda, Ford, etc.

We employ the same philosophy with our news. If you are politically liberal -- and yes, those who run the Internet know this about you -- we expose you to content including Fox News and The Blaze.

If you are conservative, you will see news from Huffington Post and CNN.

If people only see news they want to see, and only ads for products they like -- which is often the case, thanks to algorithms -- how do we ever expand our horizons?

In coming months, you will see more advertising on  If you click on these ads and actually buy something, we will receive a commission.

I know some don't like ads, but they make THE LATEST possible.

Need an "explainer" video?



Jeff Hall

Posted on February 11, 2020 14:10


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