Affiliate Conferences in the USA

10 October 2023
Affiliate Conferences in the USA

Traffic conferences are both useful and fun. They are the places where you can meet partners whom you only know through Telegram, discover new ads, find new approaches, and secret black-hat techniques.

According to most people and myself, the most insightful conferences are Affiliate World in Bangkok, Barcelona, and Dubai. However, Americans also have their game strong with two big annual events—Affiliate Summit West in Las Vegas and Affiliate Summit East in New York.

AWE takes place in January in Las Vegas, and ASE occurs in early August in New York. Yours truly has attended both and believes it’s essential to report back to the affiliate community who couldn’t make it to this part of the globe. Off-topic – it’s worth it.

The article will mainly focus on ASE since it happened recently, and the information is fresher.

A typical affiliate conference in the USA

Why Are Conferences Needed?

Since affiliate marketing entered my life, I have sequestered myself in a room surrounded by buttons, screens, Telegram messages, and coffee, spending most of my working time in this lively company. I believe many affiliates have a similar lifestyle. We rarely meet face-to-face with people in the niche; instead, we remember each other’s Telegram and Skype avatars. Sometimes you can find people in your city to discuss pressing issues and work details. But affiliate marketing is a global game, played by guys from the CIS, the USA, China, India, and other far-flung GEOs. We need conferences for networking, introductions, and a better niche understanding. Western conferences are great for meeting the advertiser who doesn’t respond on Telegram or the foreign affiliate network that doesn’t approve your account, finding a new service, or payment gateway, or just hanging out with the bros.

When Does It Make Sense to Go? At What Level?

If you’ve made your first money from traffic and plan to continue developing, go to a local conference. If affiliate marketing is your main job, and you make a living from it, travel around the world and attend conferences. You need to stay in the loop and build networks; otherwise, you’ll fall behind. Even complete newbies would benefit from attending local events, at least to see what the crowd is like and to get inspired or, conversely, to reconsider diving into black-hat stuff.

How to Get There and What’s the Cost?

At the beginning of the year, Google local and global conferences and plan your trips. Try to schedule several events throughout the year. The earlier you buy, the cheaper the tickets and hotels will be. Prices vary, but everything is attainable. For conferences in the CIS, I can’t comment as it’s been a long time since I’ve been around there. American events start at $400 for the simplest ticket and go up to $2k for VIP. The same goes for Affiliate World; tickets start at $500 and go up to $1k closer to the event. By the way, last year World had a special offer where you could buy three tickets for three events for around $1k. Hotel and flight, travel, and other costs—consult travel shows like “Heads and Tails.” But you will need to shell out a few more thousand dollars. If you want to rent a booth, it starts at $10k+ for booth rent, production, and transportation. Sometimes it goes up to $20k+.

What’s the Profit?

Think of it as part of your business expenses; it’s perfectly fine. The chance of finding profit at a conference is extremely high. You could recoup those few rubles with the first launch of an ad or affiliate scheme you find there. You might also discover a service that will save you money and time, which is also profitable. Some conferences, of course, pass without adding much value. But at the very least, they are enjoyable, and you will find useful contacts that could come in handy.

How to Prepare for the Conference?

First and foremost, study the agenda, website, and app. Almost all conferences have apps or chat platforms for attendees, where you can search by keywords to find like-minded professionals, partners, and familiar names and set up meetings. If there is an app, complete your profile and include the keywords by which others can find you. Draft a plan for yourself; don’t aimlessly wander around, as the days will fly by quickly. You can print business cards and hand them out, although this is slightly outdated, in my opinion. A QR code displaying your contact details or Telegram account on your phone’s lock screen should suffice. However, if you have a booth, then you can’t do without printed materials. Schedule meetings, read the agenda, iron the creases in your trousers, and practice speeches in front of a mirror. Events usually last 2-4 days. Make sure to note down all the contacts you make, otherwise, you’ll be lost later.

Fill in Information About Yourself

Make sure you fill in information about yourself so that people can find you based on keywords.

Useful Contacts Can Be Found

Affiliate Summit East NY

This is an old and popular conference that has been taking place for the last 15 years in New York. In 2023, it gathered 3,000 participants, with quite a few people from CIS countries, although the primary audience is Americans, of course. At all American conferences, you’ll find many white-hat niches like Leadgen, Loans, Solar Panels, E-commerce, Payment Gateways, etc. This year’s ASE took place right at Times Square, in the Marriott Hotel, spanning nine floors, requiring a bit of running around on escalators.

Venue Where ASE Was Held in 2023

With some views of New York City.

Since we’re in the “gray hat” area, we look for our own kind. I met a lot of people from the native advertising community, colleagues in crypto/forex (though we speak of this quietly), and dating. There isn’t much about gambling/betting at American conferences.

The nutra industry in the USA is thriving. White label supplement brands, SS/Trial offers. It’s not customary to talk loudly about nutra because it’s a gray area. Feel free to talk about supplements, though. To find an advertiser or affiliate working with nutra, you have to dig deep. The USA is a law-abiding country, so those in the nutra-advertising space are typically either Americans or Asians.

Why Travel to a Conference Across the Ocean?

The motive is simple—self-interest. Whether you’re a traffic arbitrager or into nutra advertising, it doesn’t matter. To keep the train rolling, you need many people in the chain: traffic sources, middlemen, manufacturers, and affiliate networks. People love attention and socializing, so it’s crucial to build offline relationships as well. Find like-minded individuals and discuss current issues with them.

And a bonus—conferences are fun! Every day there are several networking parties that often turn into mass drinking events. When people are intoxicated, they spill a lot of interesting beans. Organizers invite stars like Method Man, Redman, and other idols from your youth to these parties—pretty cool.

After a conference that lasts 2-3 days, you’ll need a couple of days to recover. Recommendation—take a one-day break after the conference and sit in your hotel room in silence. Rest and work will certainly not hurt right after. Flying home immediately can be a bit stressful; better to save your nerves for Zuckerberg.

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