I spend a decent amount of money on Amazon (and the like), buying cameras and related gear; How about you?
Even those preferring traditional distribution channels, I would imagine, need to buy sundry items on the 'spot' market from time to time, no?
Affiliate programs pay around ~5% on electronic items. Unless you are buying thru your own affiliate link (technically not allowed), this money either goes to a random affiliate or to the e-tailer themselves. Why are we giving it away?
Could IPVM become an Amazon* affiliate to capture this revenue and use it to defray the cost of membership by the commission earned? Quite possibly.
Seamlessly, the affiliate link could be made available from the camera finder. $1000 a year in purchases could pay for your membership.
Any overage would be credited to the member and could be used for:
- additional seats on corporate accounts
- courses at IPVMU
- gifting potential new members
Objection #1: IPVM could be accused of being biased.
What would the bias be exactly? Biased to give more favorable reviews towards products that can be purchased thru e-trailers? Though it's possible, remember that all commissions would remain on account of the member, not in some general profit center. All commissions earned would pass-back to the member who created them.
If this is a concern, it could be setup where the affiliate link would NOT be used once a member had fully defrayed the cost of their membership.
Objection #2: Affiliate program terms may not allow this setup
The updating of the Camera Finder app overcomes the main affiliate requipment, that you cannot ad-hoc create links for products not listed on your site. But there may be other ones I missed. And though looking at them briefly did not raise any red flags, it is possible that this might violate some of the fine print. Maybe a member who is familiar with the program can advise on this point or on any other aspect of this proposal...
Objection #3: Members who are distributors won't like it.
Apologies if this idea has been raised and rejected already... :)
*Amazon is used here, but all mega-e-tailers have similar program.