If you have been around the Fanatics.com affiliate program for any length of time you are no doubt familiar with the concept of “hot markets”. A hot market is basically an event that can drive a big bump in sales in a short period of time. Some of the obvious hot markets are the Super Bowl, the Stanley Cup playoffs, March Madness, the World Series, etc. There are events like the Olympics, holidays like St. Patrick’s Day, wins by a popular NASCAR driver, and others that can provide a big spike in sales as well.
But have you ever thought about product specific hot markets? These are specific products that when released are very, very popular and get snapped up by consumers very quickly. In many cases the quantities are very limited so they require even quicker action and more planning than a standard hot market but the results can be great for you.
Here is a quick example: Thursday, Feb 13th Mitchell & Ness released a Michael Jordan 1988-1989 All-Star Hardwood Classics Authentic Vintage Jersey. When it comes to throwback jerseys and recreations of old jerseys Mitchell & Ness is the best in the business. Add in the fact that Michael Jordan is the best to ever play the game and the design of the jersey is a great, clean design and you had all the makings of a very popular item. To up the ante even more this was an item that was only available for sale by a couple merchants including NBAStore.com which we run. There was only a limited number of these jerseys available so you had the scarcity factor playing into everything. All in all this was a great opportunity for some affiliates to capitalize and make some good commissions. The price on the jersey was $249.95 so you are looking at a $25 commission per jersey which can add up very quickly.
Some other examples are the All Star collection shoes that were for sale on NBAStore.com which sold out within a few hours. We also had a Jordan Retro shoe which had very, very limited quantities and those sold out in a matter of minutes. After the Super Bowl we had some Pro-Line Authentic helmets autographed by Marshawn Lynch and Russell Wilson that sell for $750 which have been great sellers.
So how can you, as an affiliate, capitalize on these product specific hot markets?
1. Stay in touch with us – Sometimes we don’t have a lot of lead time on products like this so drop us an email every so often and see if we have any info we can pass on.
2. Find opportunities that are relevant – Not all these products will be good fits for your site. If you have a blog about hockey players from Finland and you see a new Jordan jersey hit the market it probably won’t be a good seller. But some autographed pucks from the victory over Russia? Those would do very well for you. And no, I don’t expect us to get any pucks like that. It was just an example.
3. Act quickly. Very quickly – For some of these products we have a very limited quantity. With some of those shoes I mentioned earlier we only had about 48 pairs to sell. There were a limited number of the Jordan jerseys. If you want to capitalize on these you need to be ready to act when they go live. Honestly you should have most of the work done ahead of time so all you have to do is publish a post or drop some links into existing content.
4. Push it HARD – Using a shoe launch for an example, if you have a sneaker site and the shoes go live blast it out to your Facebook page, drop a tweet, and send an email to your list. Let your readers know they need to act quickly as well. Many times there will only be a window of an hour or less to make sales for these products so don’t wait.
5. Prep your audience – If you know a specific product will be released at a specific time prep your audience ahead of time and let them know they need to come back to your site at 9:00 AM on March 10th or whatever to buy it. Tell them they need to act quickly because quantities are limited and if they wait they could miss out.
Take a look at your audience and traffic and come up with some ideas of hot market products that might resonate well with them. Each target audience will be different, each league and team will be different. There is no one-size fits all approach but if you take the time to plan there are some great opportunities to make some good commissions focusing on hot market products. If you have any questions please drop us an email or give us a call. We will do our best to pass on as much information as we can and help you plan to make the most out of these opportunities.