The Honest Truth About The SFI Affiliate

Although I’ve been a member of SFI for some years I haven’t had too much to do with them. Today I happened to get an email from them of which this is a small portion:

As you may know, SFI recently instituted a minimum activity requirement for its affiliates, defined as a minimum of 500 VersaPoints every 60 days.

Currently, you are short 500 points.  If you do not have the points needed at the end of the month, your SFI affiliateship will be CANCELLED and all of your personal referrals will automatically roll up to your sponsor (or other active upline member).

Not willing to burn any bridges, you never know when they may come in handy, I decided to log on and get my 500 points, which took me all of 5 minutes.  After thinking about it for awhile I thought I would do a post about my experience with them, and seeing as how my post on The Honest Truth About Blogging For Money was received so well I thought perhaps I should start an new category called, The Honest Truth.

Anyway, I initially joined them because of two very simple factors.

  1. The prospect for easy money. Similar to the example in my The Honest Truth About Blogging For Money post they offered me an opportunity to make so much money that I could tell my job where to shove his job. A little hard considering I work for myself. Today they are a little more reasonable, as the present SFI gateway page shows they now promise that you can turn 5 hours a week into $500 per month.
  2. It was Free to join. After getting burned some time ago I made a promise to myself that I would no longer pay for any scheme that promised unrealistic returns.

I did discover it offered certain good points one of which was it had several ‘gateways’ each one offering some potential for making cash. The thing was to direct people to those gateways. Apart from the example above they also offered the following.

  • The Real Gateway: As the blurb says; Looking for a REAL way to earn money online? With REAL results and a REAL company? If you’re ready to get REAL, get SFI. Yesterday, 1274 people from 98different countries became SFI affiliates. That’s one enrollment every 67 seconds. And that’s just from ONE day!
  • The EyeEarn Gateway: Join the EyeEarn network, and get paid to
    drive your car, wear t-shirts, and more!
  • The Triple Clicks Gateway: This is a virtual online store full of bargains, including highlighted deal of the day, for the happy online shopper.

They also had links that would take people to other landing pages offering products such as Health and Wellness, and even several hosting packages.

There was also the added bonus that you would earn from people who signed up under you.

Truth be told I didn’t do all that well at it but I lay the blame totally on myself for not promoting it enough. Then in 2007 I decided to Giving SFI Marketing A Fair Go but even then I didn’t do all that well. I think there were two obstacles that I faced, one being that I’m an Aussie and they were more suited for American based affiliates. The other was simply that I was just too damn slack. You need to work at anything you want to succeed in and I just didn’t put any work into it.

In those days you had to achieve  EA status, which was fairly easy for a Yank as all you had to do was purchase for yourself from their large range of goods. No so good for me and the transport cost made it all too expensive. Still while I was making some money the added cost killed any profits.

The other big mistake was other than that initial post I never promoted them at all, and if you don’t market your goods how can you expect to sell them?

So while I never made any money from SFI, I still believe they have some potential which is why I didn’t want to burn those bridges and have remained an affiliate. I notice from logging on after an absence of a couple of years that they have made a lot of changes, and with some luck some of those changes may make it easier for Aussies to use their services.

As to the Honest Truth About The SFI affiliate, I’m afraid the jury is still out on that one for the present time.

So, seeing as how they been going for so long, I’m sure that some of you may already be members, and if so we’d love to here of your experiences with them.

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Peter Pelliccia

I'm an Aussie blogger who loves to blog and share everything that I've learned on my blogging journey, including blogging tips and ways to blog for money. I am also trying to make my way on YouTube. You can follow my progress by subscribing to My Bonzer Channel.

This Post Has 38 Comments

  1. Any venture is hard to follow through if the initial motivation is not sustained or if the efforts far outweigh the rewards. I haven’t tried affiliate marketing but I might give it a shot. :)
    .-= Selurus´s last blog ..Random Ramblings is now Do Follow =-.

    1. I’ve have done it but only through my blogs, either by posting about a particular affiliate or by placing a link on the blog somewhere.

      Some of my affiliates have performed quite well.

  2. I read somewhere (I think it was Ferris’ 4 Hr Work Week book) that 20% of your customers provide 80% of your sales, he said get rid of the rest.

    Maybe that applies to affiliates and advertising too. Get rid of what isn’t working (making $) or you don’t have time to apply properly, and the rest will shine.

    I dunno, what do think Sire?
    .-= Keith @NeedInformation´s last blog ..Are You Writing About What You Know? =-.

    1. I don’t see why any businessman would want to get rid of any customer, unless they were costing you money. I have small and large customers and I treat them all the same.

      In regards to affiliates, I can understand getting rid of ones that don’t perform so you can concentrate on those that do, now that makes perfect sense.

      1. I agree with your assessment on letting customers go. In most of my businesses I have one time customers, although when I was a sub-contractor there were times when a contractor I worked for wasn’t worth the amount of time required so I had to stop working for them to keep higher profit/volume customers happy, so I see that point.

        As far as affiliates, I see it as a test, and if it doesn’t perform over a certain period, then it is either my fault or the product doesn’t fit my audience, so it should be re-evaluated.

        Just the way I look at it though….

        Good article though, helps me in my thinking on my current and future projects.

        1. Reassessment of products etc should be a part of any business if it wants to perform well.

  3. No matter, what I’ve tried to generate income on my blog, it’s all been a failure so far. I can’t my readers aren’t willing to click and purchase anything I offer. I must suck and they must hate me. (Crying).

    So, I’m not worrying about the money side at the moment, just going to keep working on producing good content and building traffic.

    BTW, Sire. The Karate Kid song post is up. Hope it gets you psyched. :)
    .-= Gordie´s last blog ..Personal Development Through Song: “You’re The Best”. =-.

    1. It all takes time Gordie. I get hundreds of clicks a month but few actually buy. Perhaps it’s because they aren’t ready at the time. That’s probably why advertisers have a cookie life on those links.

      Heading over to read that post now.

    2. Gordie, I think the unpleasant truth is that you will always get the best conversions from hard selling. Hype stuff up, trigger hope and fear and place big “BUY NOW” buttons. That kind of thing.

      That’s why I actually recommend building a few mini-blogs purely for monetization, because it can take quite long to build your passion-blog to the point where you can translate visitors into money while remaining non-salesy.

      1. Hi Shane,
        That’s an option for me in future as an experiment to generate some passive income online.

  4. I’ve never heard of SFI, but then again I just started my journey into the ‘making money online’ venture. I bookmarked it for a closer look. Thanks.

    1. No worries Matt, They’ve been there for many years so they must be doing something right.

  5. Wow, talk about a blast from the past. I didn’t even know they were still going. About 5 years ago I tried my hand at making money online. I was very rubbish at it! Like you’ve talked about before, there are so many scams out there. I like your idea of adding an ‘honest truth’ category. Sounds like sfi could be a good addition for people who are that way inclined.
    .-= Eleanor Edwards´s last blog ..How A Pot Of Dead Basil Made Me Smile Today =-.

    1. I haven’t added it yet Eleanor, but I think I will.

      I think the fact that they are still going, considering they don’t charge for membership, means they must be doing something right. I just need to take the time to work out how to tap into it.

      Perhaps it would be a good idea to add a make money section in my blogroll.

  6. Twitter:
    My favorite thing about this post … I now know Sire’s real name. :-)
    .-= Todd Morris´s last blog ..My Ipod Makes Me Feel Old =-.

    1. LOL, honestly Todd, I’m surprised it’s taken you so long. I’m sure one of my other posts, on Helium I think, revealed my true name. :wink_ee:

      1. I already knew it, but where is it in this post?
        .-= Dennis Edell´s last blog ..Blog Move Is Imminent ! I’m Looking For Launch Partners… =-.

        1. It’s not in the post itself Dennis. If you follow some of the links it takes you to a store that I am affiliated with and that store bears my real name.

          1. Oops, I guess I just revealed something too, huh. lol

  7. Hmm, some of their claims might not slip past the new FTC regs with ease. lol
    .-= Dennis Edell´s last blog ..Blog Move Is Imminent ! I’m Looking For Launch Partners… =-.

    1. I wonder if it applies when they don’t actually charge you any money to join? I wish I had the time so that I could actually spend 5 hours a week promoting it to see how good it really is.

      1. I would think it would. Though there may be no money upfront, it’s still an “affiliation”.

  8. I think I’m in a time machine *insert music from The Twilight Zone*…I remember SFI. I think there were like a gazillion people in that or everyone in it sent me their link.

    Like Eleanor, I didn’t know they were still around.

    I used to see TV commercials for the EyeEarn thing but, not sure when the last time that was.
    .-= Sheryl Loch@Blog Wench´s last blog ..Profile Linkers Piss Me Off =-.

    1. Damn Sheryl, does that mean you never took it up? I was hoping you would be able to tell me all the ins and outs. Shit, now I have to do it the hard way and work it all out myself. :lol_ee:

  9. The reality is that all of these programs take work. That is not a bad thing. The real question is whether it yields reasonable returns on your efforts.
    .-= Jack´s last blog ..These Pictures of You =-.

    1. That’s the thing, and that’s probably one of the reasons I’ve never succeeded at it, I never truly promoted the great products they have to offer.

  10. Twitter:
    First, I probably won’t be joining this one for awhile, Sire, since, as you said, it takes time to make any money from it, which I don’t have.

    Second, I just learned a bit of HTML from you, that being how to title links; yay!

    Third, in one of your comments above, you said “In regards to affiliates, I can understand getting rid of ones that don’t perform so you can concentrate on those that do, not that makes perfect sense.” I think you meant “now”, but whether you did or not, you know I take the opposite view, that being even affiliates who aren’t performing well are advertising you and your services, so you have nothing to lose.
    .-= Mitch´s last blog ..Disappointed In Ning =-.

  11. I did mean now Mitch, and I’ve edited it so that it now makes sense.

    When did I ever teach you HTML?

    As to joining SFI, I think it would also suit people with a large following as they would also earn from people who sign under them. It’s a shame that I can’t buy the products, due to the added cost of shipping it here, as they have some really good stuff.

    1. Sire, I assume this is you confirming that they have not worked out an easier way for Aussies to purchase from within their system? That’s really a shame. I’ve become so used to sending files and really connecting internationally that I about had a seizure when I tried to send a small package containing a PC mouse from the States to Australia and it was over $100 for this little box! I mean w-t-f! I did notice that the rate didn’t go up drastically (some, but reasonable) for larger boxes so I can only assume there are shipping tariffs and customs people that are making this a rather rude experience! I would guess this explains why so many of my aussie friends have been in (or out of) Dubai MLM. Thanks for all the great info Sire!
      .-= Kimberly Castleberry´s last blog ..Free Social Media Connect With Me Buttons =-.

      1. That’s pretty well it Kimberly. Although the shipping cost were nowhere near that extreme, they were high enough to make the whole process too expensive.

  12. Never heard of SFI before. Thanks for the education, Sire. It’s been my experience, that my customers are my most precious commodity. However, the interaction I have with them is priceless and not always as endearing online. My feeling is when “touchavision” and smellavision” are brought into the limelight, money may be gained from the online world of blogging.

    That said, I think it wise of you to keep your SFI bridge in tact, you just never know!!!

    Fess up:) you’re an alias?

    1. Of course Louise, Sire has always been an Alias. I’ve been known as Sire ever since my BBS days.

      I’ve been looking into the new SFI and it seems they’ve made some changes for the better. I think I will give it another shot sometime soon.

  13. I had never heard of SFI before.
    I do however live under a rock in the middle of Canada..

    So if I were to buy something from you do you have it shipped from the States to you and then ship it back to me in Canada?

    1. It would come from the States. That’s the cool thing about being an affiliate, they take care of all the handling and postage and stuff. All you have to do is provide the sale.

  14. I am one of the many who have not heard of them. I will be sure to click on through and see what is what about it. Maybe you will even make a little money, eventually. :clap_tb: I found the one time I spoke about a product I tried I had a few takers. It happened to be a $3 coffee + mug trial that paid quite well on sign up. The best way to get people to click is to share your experience.
    .-= Anne´s last blog ..Live on What You Earned… Two Years Ago =-.

    1. I’ve certainly have found that to be true Anne. I’m even considering their EyeEarn promo where I will get paid by having their banner displayed on my car. The banner looks pretty cool, and if it works in Australia I don’t mind getting paid for driving it around.

  15. Thanks for sharing your experiences, Sire.

    I’ve always stayed away from this type of offer (and since I’ve always stayed away, I might be wrong, because I don’t know much about them). It just seems to me that here, you’re at the bottom or very close to the bottom of the food-chain/money-chain. I try to do stuff where I’m close to the top, product creation being one of the best things to do in that regard.
    I’ll be releasing at least one major and several minor products in 2010, so I’ll see if my theory has any truth to it. :)

    .-= Shane´s last blog ..Interview with List-Building Virtuoso Jonathan Gunson =-.

    1. The difference with this mob compared to others Shane is that they actually have good products to sell. I actually bought some to begin with but the transport costs to Australia made it too expensive.

      The difference between SFI and some other affiliates is that you’re not having to buy some ‘idea’ and then tell others that all they have to do is to sell that ‘idea’ to someone else. These guys actually have products to sell.

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