Affiliate marketing and social media have been the darlings of the Internet era post-2000; they have risen to stardom nearly at the same time - although affiliate networking matured a little earlier. Both involve sharing what users hope to be valuable content that would in return grant them either visibility and influence or directly money. And both aim to generate leads as a result of familiarity between users and the impact that a friend sharing a certain content has over intent to find out more about or buy something.
It is only normal that someone would consider to merge the two trends into one single platform, where you could first aggregate a lot of affiliate marketing links and then share them to your friends and contacts as a bundle. Step aside for TheTopSpotOnline.
2-minute description of affiliate marketing, done by TopSpot
TheTopSpotOnline lets you create your own exhibition place on the platform (called a Spot) where you can gather any type of content, be it freely generated by you or affiliate links which may bring you cash if they generate leads for the affiliate business enrolled in their program. Once your Spot is packed with enough links, you can share it to social networks, making it look like a presentation stand of quality content.
According to their press release, what differentiates TheTopSpotOnline from other affiliate programs is that "shoppers can recommend products to the online community and earn commissions for validated sales." Plus, you not only receive cash in exchange for sales generated by people clicking on links you share, but also for products you buy yourself (the cash-back method). Registration is made via simple form or through Facebook, and you can see beforehand how lists of Spots are organised by domain or content.
TheTopSpotOnline is based in New York and was launched before the winter holidays, and boasts inclusion of online mega-stores such as Wal-Mart, Amazon, Best Buy, Nordstrom, Macy’s, Lego or Hewlett Packard. For latest insight on their offerings, check out their Facebook page or CrunchBase profile, and they have already got some media attention as of recently. It seems different takes on the affiliate marketing and social sharing cash-back system are still appearing on the market, as brands try to communicate more efficiently with their followers and customer personas.
For idea novelty, I give them 3.5/5.
For design, I give them 3/5.
For user experience, I give them 4/5.
For potential to scale, I give them 3/5
OVERALL GRADE: 3.375 out of 5. Their success very much depends on explaining the bottomline idea to users of the platform.