The ContentRobot team headed to Boston on Monday to attend the Affiliate Summit East 08 Conference – Shawn Collins and Missy Ward know how to put on a show.

We had a great time meeting up with some friends, clients, and colleagues – and we even had time to make some new ones despite being there for only one day.

While we were happy to hang out in the blogger lounge just to mingle, play Wii, and affix stickers to our laptops; we actually took the time to share our WordPress expertise with anyone seeking some technical advice.

We even attended two seminars: Content the Kills and How is Social Media Changing Affiliate Marketing – and wanted to share some random insights:

  • The affiliate marketing crowd is extremely tech savvy and they often actively seek online tools and techniques to drive interest, community, and sales
  • The best way to encourage readership is to be consistent, open, entertaining, giving (takeways and teaching go a long way) to build trust and a following
  • Be passionate with your topics and be in it for the long haul
  • Web 2.0 is in full force – there are currently 80 million views on YouTube and 110 million blogs
  • 56% of users now look to others for product information
  • The ROI of blogging / social networking is still elusive, but you need to put value on the conversation and the process not just the clickthrus and conversions

Tools of the Trade

To be a great content creator, you must take advantage of the technology:

  • Twitter – the popular micro-blogging/ social networking tool
  • – post to all your social networks (Twitter, Jaiku, Tumblr, Pownce, Facebook, hi5, LinkedIn, MySpace, etc.) all at once
  • ShareThis – share information (such as a blog post) via email, IM, and social bookmarking site
  • MyBlogLog – display your photo/vanity profile on MyBlogLog-enabled sites
  • FriendFeed – see the ripple effect of your network
  • Technorati & Google Blog Search – find out what are people saying about you

Success Stories

Those looking for case studies for successful affiliate marketers were often encouraged to check out the following sites:

During the Social Media seminar, it was amazing to see the tweets flying back and forth – so much so that the moderator was able to field several questions from the Affiliate Summit twitter stream. We went from people who didn’t know much about Twitter at the Las Vegas show (a mere six months ago) to an impressive adoption rate since.

Our favorite sentiment of the day came from Chris Brogan (who was discussing the best ways to get into the conversations at Twitter), “Don’t just sit on the blanket, bring a bottle of wine to the picnic.” Be sure to give and give and give.

Blog.on affiliate marketers!