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Azam Marketing was founded on 4 August, 1997. Thank you to everyone for your support over the decades.Drumroll please… 4 August 2017 will be the twentieth anniversary of the founding of Azam Marketing!

To discuss the development of the company and the affiliate marketing industry over the last two decades, PerformanceIN interviewed our Founder and CEO Nadeem during a conference held in London. Watch the short interview below:


Stay tuned, as there will be more on Azam Marketing’s Big 2-0 anniversary soon.







Below we present our essential guide to choosing the best affiliate program

This is the second tutorial in our Affiliate Marketing Masterclass series. Part One, which explains the terminology used in affiliate and online marketing, is here.

Many people who are new to affiliate marketing get excited by the hype that most advertisers and their networks put out about the potential to make whopping commissions from promoting their affiliate programs and rush into marketing them with the requisite due diligence, usually to find out the hype was just that.

However, if you are serious about becoming a professional and profitable affiliate marketer you should meticulously scrutinise the affiliate programs which are available within your targets sector(s) and how much profit, if any, you are realistically likely earn from them.

To emphasise how important it is for you to assiduously research potential affiliate programs, Azam Marketing’s training manual for staff on which affiliate programs to promote runs to 5,000 thousand words long. It is arguably the most important document in our organisation, as we can make or lose hundreds of thousands of pounds based on our decision in terms of which advertisers to invest into marketing.

Here are our top ten tips on finding the very best affiliate program:

1. Is it completely free to join?

Most “get-rich-quick” partnership opportunities, especially if they are combined with a Multi-Level Marketing or networking marketing structure, will fail this test. They usually require a hefty sign-up fee and/or ongoing monthly investment and their actual raison d’etre is transferring money from the majorities to the minorities at the top of the pyramid.

The early bird catches the worm in these scenarios – those who join the program early will make money from those who join at a later stage. Where there isn’t a bona fide focus on selling a product or service but rather on recruiting others, if someone makes £50,000 from a program, 1,000 people stand to lose £50 each.

Legitimate businesses usually do not ask people to work for them (although, in all fairness, there can be exceptions: if, for instance, the affiliate program is providing worthwhile training resources to you as their affiliate, it may be fair for them to charge for the work that has gone into creating them). Unlike companies which generate most of their revenue from recruiting other affiliates and agents, genuine enterprises make their money from selling tangible products or providing value-added services.

2. How much commission does the merchant pay?

This may seem obvious, but the amount of commission you earn per lead or sale is critical. There’s no point spending time and money promoting a product that doesn’t pay well. You could end up spending more on marketing than you make back. It’s best to stick with marketing products with a high commission value unless you are in the rare position of having found a niche where you can sell vast quantities and make substantial overall commissions.

The profit margin many advertisers make on items is as high as 40% to 50%, and paying affiliates a 5% commission is not on. A merchant selling a t-shirt for £20 may have produced it for only £3. His mark-up is massive and offering the hard-working affiliate a one-off 50p in such a scenario is not a fair share of the retail price.

Don’t be misled by advertisers who claim their brand value compensates for miserly payouts. Having a reputable brand can help, but is not always the case.

An experiment done several years ago by one of the UK’s top affiliates, Kieron Donoghue, demonstrated how brand name advertisers can convert worse than non-brand ones. Not only were the likes of Tesco and Marks & Spencer paying 2% and 3% commission on Valentine flowers, but they were weaker at converting traffic than less well-known merchants such as Bunches and Flowers Direct who were paying 10% and 15%:

Tesco Flowers – 11% conversion rate – 31 sales – £21.04 commission
Bunches – 16% conversion rate – 35 sales – £98.54 commission

Big brands also tend to have more ‘leaks’ on their websites i.e. the have advertising or promote products and services that don’t earn you commission. A case in point is Amazon, whose web pages give a signficiant amount of real estate to advertising and to products that make them a packet but earn you nadda.

It's essential to find the right niche!

3. How relevant is the advertiser to your audience?

You are highly unlikely to make much money if you market affiliate programs that don’t have much relevance to your website, email list or social media audience. A lot of novice webmasters join a bunch of affiliate programs and figure if enough of them pay off they’ll make a bucket-load of money – when in actual fact the affiliate site will just end up looking like one big spammy advertisement.

Your main assets are your content, your traffic and your knowledge of that traffic, so it’s a much better idea to pick a small number of affiliate programs that best serve your visitors and supplement your content. For example, if you’ve reviewed a hotel on your site, you could link to an advertiser who is selling rooms at said hotel at a competitive price and offering you a fair remuneration. This is an excellent way both to serve your visitors and to make money off your website’s audience.

4. How established is the advertiser and how much traffic / sales is their website getting?

You can readily find out how long most businesses have been going by looking online.

In most Western countries, you can also study the accounts of incorporated companies online for free or a nominal sum. This information is valuable in letting you know how long the company you’re looking to partner with has been in business, what their turnover is and the like.

A good tip is to try to discover the amount of traffic the advertiser’s website is already receiving. Alexa is a pale imitation of what it used to be, but is a useful tool for this. If a website is ranked in the top 20,000 in most countries, the advertiser is getting a significant amount of traffic. If it is ranked below 100,000 it is likley to be a retailer who does not have many customers (which means they are probably not great, but it could be a golden opportunity to make money as they’re unlikely to have many affiliates actively promoting them).

Always research an advertiser products etc. thoroughly if they haven’t been in business for a long time, their website has a low traffic ranking or they haven’t got a sizeable turnover as these are red flags. It may be a good idea to order the product yourself if you can afford to. Otherwise you could do a search to find out if there are any adverse comments about the retailer or their products. If all is well and the product is good, you could have found a gold mine – but there’s a lot more to considerable.

5. Will they serve your appetite for cookies?

How long is the merchant’s cookie period?

Many customers do not buy on their first visit to a merchant’s website. It is important therefore that the merchant provides a reasonable cookie period for their affiliate program so that you get credit if the customer returns and buys at a later date. The longer the cookie lasts the better the chances of you getting paid.

6. Does the merchant track non-cookie sales?

Cookies are not always a reliable method of tracking sales back to affiliates. People often have cookies turned off in their browser or they get deleted. They may use a different computer from when they first clicked through to an advertiser.

Most major networks now track a sale even if cookies are turned off and there are even a small ratio of affiliate programs that pay you even if a customer purchases via the phone.

In terms of rewarding affiliates for repeat purchases, some merchants employ database tracking. This tags a customer to an affiliate when he or she registers and/or buys their first item. The affiliate then gets paid on any future purchases, no matter which computer the customer logs in from and whether the original cookie has been deleted or not.

Avoid sending your hard-won traffic to an advertiser if they do not have robust tracking solutions in place to track back both the original and follow-up sales back to you. Which takes us to another important point to consider…

7. Does the merchant pay recurring commission?

Not many businesses can make a profit off the first sale alone. Yet the way most affiliate programs are structured, you earn a commission for sending a customer to an advertiser’s site and then, even though the customer is likely to shop with that advertiser again and again, you’ll only ever get paid on the first purchase.

Prioritise affiliate program which pay recurring commissions.

8. Does the merchant have a dedicated affiliate manager?

Many merchants don’t invest in a staff member who is given a sizeable chunk of hours every week to manage their affiliate program, whether that person is in-house or at an agency. Try to avoid these companies unless they have a proven track-record and their commission rates are exceptionally high. The reason is that, when problems occur – which they do on a frequent basis with doing anything that involves an intersection of IT and business! – it can be a painful process getting matters resolved.

9. What marketing materials and linking options are available?

Look at the quality of marketing resources that each merchant provides.

Do they provide well-written copy for affiliates? Do they provide dynamically-updated creative that promotes seasonal campaigns, their bestselling products and the like? Do they provide coupon codes, co-registration boxes, email marketing creative and deep-linking methods for affiliates? Are they willing to put together creative specifically for their online sales team, aka their affiliates?

Make sure banners have a strong call-to-action and do not prioritise the merchant’s name or URL, which can encourage people to visit their website directly and means you don’t earn any commission.

If the marketing material and linking options they provide is decent then it demonstrates they are serious about affiliate marketing.

10. How well do they convert?

One of the advantages of many of the best affiliate networks is they provide conversion metrics. You can see which merchants are great at converting visitors to sales/leads and which are not so good. This information is critical to your success.

One of the most important figures to study in this respect is the EP(H)C (Earnings Per (Hundred) Click(s)) and compare them between your shortlisted advertisers.

If a network does not publish conversion metrics because a merchant has just joined them, be savvy and wait a while. Let other affiliates spend their precious time and money testing the waters.

You can usually get an insight into how well an affiliate program is performing by studying its metrics on the leading cashback websites in your territory. They often publish data on how well it is performing.

Data on Maplins UK affiliate programFor example, this link takes you to the Maplin Electronics page on TopCashback UK. The Tracking Stats are in the bottom right-hand corner, and we’ve taken a screenshot with this data which you can see to the right of this text.

These demonstrate that the affiliate program is not anything to write home about as, not only do they pay a low commission, but a fairly large ratio, 3%, of leads require “Manual Claims”, which means the commission has to be manually acquired from the advertiser. (The actual amount of sales that don’t track for this advertiser is likely to be much higher than 3% as many people don’t have the time and energy to jump through all the hoops to claim their missing cashback.) Also Maplin’s “Avg Payment Speed” is a ridiculous “25wks 5 days”; by comparison Maplin’s competitor eBuyer is “2 wks 5 days”.

As an aside, studying how much cashback the “100%” cashback sites provide their users gives you a valuable insight into how much commission they may be receiving and what you could try to negotiate with the advertiser for yourself.

If conversion statistics are not available anywhere, then email the advertiser’s affiliate manager and ask for them: many are surprisingly forthcoming. But do take what they say with a pinch of salt – they are not likely to be transparent if a program is a poor converter! You could also try asking other affiliates in online communities.

Our Affiliate Marketing Masterclass will continue, with tutorials for both publishers and advertisers, so stay tuned!



We are delighted to launch Azam Marketing’s Affiliate Marketing Masterclass series. This course is based on our unparalleled twenty years of expertise in affiliate marketing and will spill the beans on how you can become successful as an affiliate.

The foundation to success in any field is to robustly understand the terminology and that is what this first lesson will delve into.

First things first: what is affiliate marketing? Affiliate marketing (also increasingly known as performance marketing) is a type of marketing in which a business rewards affiliates for each visitor or customer brought by the affiliate’s marketing endeavours.

The industry has four core players: the advertiser (also known as the ‘merchant’, ‘retailer’ or ‘brand’), the network (that contains offers for the affiliate to choose from and also takes care of the payments), the publisher (also known as ‘the affiliate’), and the customer.

How affiliate marketing works... the chain from affiliate to sale / lead. Click here for larger image

While these are the key components, the market has grown in complexity, resulting in the emergence of a secondary tier of players, including affiliate management agencies, super-affiliates and specialised third party vendors.

How affiliate marketing works. Click here for a larger version of this chart

When determining how much money you will earn by promoting a particular advertiser, always be sure to check the payment model they use. Knowing this will save you time and money in terms of (a) deciding whether the payment terms are sufficiently rewarding to make it worthwhile for you to partner with them and (b) if you do decide to work with them, determining which traffic acquisition strategy will enable you to yield a net profit.

Read on to learn more about the most popular payment models that you’re likely to encounter in affiliate marketing.

CPM (Cost Per Mille (Thousand)) – a CPM rate of $1.00 would mean the publisher receives a fee of $1.00 for showing 1,000 adverts for a particular merchant or retailer.

As affiliate marketing is primarily a performance based channel, CPM advertising is rarely seen in the field.

Banner ads on large websites are often paid for on a CPM basis and advertisers find them beneficial to build brand awareness.

CPM ads are usually more appealing than ads paid on a CPA or CPC basis as it costs the advertiser no more to receive twenty clicks on their banner than one. For this reason, advertisers who pay on a CPM basis often run highly-animated ‘trick’ ads that result in lots of clicks.

As advertising paid for on a CPM basis often doesn’t result in direct sales for advertisers, CPM rates have been in decline since Azam Marketing started in online marketing two decades ago.

CPC (Cost Per Click) – advertising sold on the basis money is only paid out when an advert is directly responded to via a click through to the advertiser’s website.

CPC ads are usually designed to provide the necessary information, such as the price of a product, upfront and not be overly-appealing as advertisers only want people to click on the ads if they are interested in purchasing the product being sold.

As with CPM, advertisers paying CPC are nowadays few and far between in affiliate marketing.

CPA (Cost per Action; also called CPL on some networks) – Using this model, money is only paid out when a certain action occurs because of the advert, for example if a customer signs up for a newsletter, enters a competition or completes a form to request more information.

CPS (Cost Per Sale) – the affiliate is paid a commission (either a percentage or a set amount) when the customer purchases a product or service from the advertiser. To successfully generate sales, a publisher/affiliate often has to target and pre-sell the product by putting together relevant content and/or researching the latest offers which will entice the customer. As such CPS is not really considered a form of advertising but a sales-based commission program.

eCPM (Effective CPM) – an effective CPM is the average rate a publisher receives for 1000 ads, usually banner ads, factoring in (a) the fact that much of the publisher’s inventory may be unsold and (b) hybrid payment models (see Hybrid Campaigns below). If a publisher sells half their banner inventory at $1 cpm and can’t sell the other half then his effective CPM would be $0.50.

eCPM is a term usually used to describe how well or poor a given advertising network’s rates are for a given publisher which factors in the unsold ads the ad network could not sell.

Hybrid Campaigns – an advertising campaign in which an advertiser agrees to pay for advertising using a combination of the above. For example, a hybrid campaign could pay both $0.50 CPM and 10% CPA. This may be beneficial in rewarding publishers for both the sales that they generate as well as the increased brand exposure they provide to merchants.

Another example of a hybrid campaign would be where the advertiser pays the affiliate a one-off lump sum to contribute towards advertising costs (for example, for placing their adverts in prominent locations on the affiliate’s website or email newsletter) together with a CPA commission for any products sold.

The following chart summarises the four key remuneration methodologies:
How online advertising is renumerated: CPM (cost-per-mille (thousand)), CPC (cost-per-click), CPA (cost-per-action) and CPL (cost-per-lead)

Part II of our training course continues with 10 invaluable tips on choosing the ideal affiliate programs to promote.

Subscribe to this blog to be notified when we publish each part of our free Affiliate Marketing Masterclass series. We will also be launching a Search Engine Optimisation Masterclass course soon.







Read hard-hitting article below about the persistent ethnic, class and gender discrimination in the creative industries in the UK

Interestingly, both this week’s ‘Broadcast’ and ‘Campaign’ magazines have articles on their front pages about the startling lack of BME staff in the creative and media industries in the UK.

Click on this image to view these magazine scans in a larger size

Whereas 44% of London’s population consists of people from black and minority ethnic groups, only around 12% of those working in fields such as television production and advertising agencies are from these minorities – and the percentage plummets when it comes to the top roles.

The lead article in ‘Broadcast’ quotes Lucy Pilkington, the factual creative director of Sugar Films, who “was ‘fed up’ of being handed an approved list of male, white directors to oversee a show”.

I have been working in publishing and marketing in London for more than a quarter of a century and, despite reading and hearing platitudes from the powers that be time and again about the need for more diversity, do not fail to notice that, even in CE 2017, when I am sitting in senior-level industry meetings, out of 12 or 14 people I will often be the only non-white person. And the only one from a working-class background.

Enough is enough. As these veritable industry publications highlight, the white, middle-class and male stranglehold on the creative industries in the UK, particularly when it comes to management level roles, must finally end. Urgently.

Please share this article to highlight this issue.

Subscribe to this blog for more articles here.



Affiliate Marketing is Dead, Long Live Affiliate Marketing
As a background summary for those that don’t know me (Nadeem Azam) particularly well and may be wondering what qualifies me to write this article, I have been working full-time in affiliate marketing since 1997, regularly spending 100 hours a week running a business which not only operates as a major affiliate / publisher, but provides Outsourced Affiliate Program Management Services for advertisers and, among other involvements with the industry, has provided consultancy services for three of the four largest affiliate networks in the world (indeed, I spent a large part of my weekends over many years anonymously writing blog posts for one of them); I have probably spent more of my life carrying out, analysing and discussing digital affiliate marketing than anybody in the world.

Affiliate Marketing is Dead, Long Live Affiliate MarketingI was blessed to have been able to drive many hundreds of millions worth of sales via affiliate marketing in the noughties. My company, Azam Marketing, was one of the top ten affiliates on several networks.

I have often been asked over the last year “is affiliate marketing dead?” and it’s also a regular feature on affiliate discussion forums and conferences. The question has prompted me to script my two pennies worth.

Being an affiliate often feels like you’re being attacked on all fronts like ISIS

ISIS have created so many enemies with their barbarism combined with political naïvity that – after many years of dithering – the most powerful stakeholders in the Middle East have joined forces to try to eliminate them. A case in point is the battle to liberate the city of Mosul in Iraq from ISIS which commenced in 2016. It led to an enviable coalition lauching an assault on the terrorist forces which had captured the city a couple of years earlier, consisting of the government of Iraq; the government of Iraqi Kurdistan; local Assyrian Christian, Yezidi, Turcoman and Armenian militias; the US; the UK; France; Turkey; Iran; Russia, and a few other entities.

In the last few years it has certainly become harder to be an affiliate, as affiliates’ businesses have also been attacked by all and sundry, on almost every front imaginable:

  • commissions have often been slashed, particularly by big brand advertisers (Amazon used to pay 15% commission on a book sale when I started sending them customers in the late nineties; now you’re made to feel lucky if you receive 2.5%)
  • commission tracking for many advertisers is highly dubious and often doesn’t work (with the extensive testing my staff and I have done, up to 20% of all sales are not tracked or paid commission for)
  • the Zeus of the online world, Google, has been on a war-path against affiliate websites of most types and has largely filtered them out of the top of both organic and paid search results
  • in terms of paid search marketing, CPC costs for the most profitable terms have increased at an astronomical rate over the last decade
  • ISPs have become more adept at blocking affiliates’ promotional emails
  • hundreds of millions of people have installed ad blockers, which block affiliates’ ads and tracking
  • most – not all – affiliate networks have failed to significantly evolve their technologies in the last decade
  • affiliate program account management services are overwhelmingly provided by inexperienced graduates of substandard degrees from tier three and four universities who often don’t know what they are doing beyond the basics
  • coupon and cashback websites are taking an ever-increasing share of commissions from other types of affiliates
  • many leads driven by affiliates on mobile devices – now responsible for up to 55% of sales on some affiliate programs – do not tracking for a variety of reasons

The affiliate ship is being abandoned faster than you can yell “Titanic”!

Almost all the “super affiliates” who I knew from the late nineties and early noughties have long since left HM Affiliate Marketing and jumped ship to either becoming retailers themselves, now run digital marketing agencies, or have simply retired.

Of those figures still engaged in the cut-and-thrust of cybermarketing, many have migrated their businesses, conferences and ebooks away from using the “affiliate marketing” brand to the term “performance marketing”, often because the former has a negative association and is deemed to be restricted within an arena that is not as profitable as it once was.

A development that highlights the lack of interest in affiliate marketing is that the majority of affiliate marketing discussion forums have long since closed down; this is in large part due to the rise of social media, but is also a result of most affiliates giving up on the game. Both the biggest affiliate forums in the USA and UK, respectively ABestWeb and PeformanceIN, have died a death.

Yesterday I was updating my training presentation for my staff and of six of the affiliate marketing forums my slides encouraged them to join and participate in, four have shut down in the last three years.

So what is the besieged affiliate to do?

There’s a lot that can be said in terms of stratagem to deal with the decline of mainstream affiliate marketing, but our agency has largely moved away from the vagaries of CPA and CPL to far more robust, profitable and stable income streams, aka CPM, CPC and tenancy fees and consultancy charges for our work. We have the likes of Dell, Disney, HP and Google biting our hands off to book CPM campaigns.

To be in such a position means building a brand, a reputation and utilisation of technologies that is on a completely different level to how the average affiliate runs their business, and I would encourage my affiliate friends to consider doing the same.

It takes time, it takes patience, it takes diligence and it takes financial investment. 99% of online marketers are not willing to make those sacrifices . . . which creates a splendid barrier to entry. It means entrepreneurs with the appropriate fortitude, aptitude and attitude have significantly higher chances of succeeding than slugging it out in the cesspit of low-grade grey-hat-style affiliate marketing for a few scraps here and there. No more partnering with advertisers who often, behind-the-scenes, treat affiliates with disdain, perceiving them as a “cheap and cheerful” means to gain customers (the same advertisers who don’t think twice about paying Google AdWords $1.50 a CLICK frown upon paying affiliates $1.50 for a SALE).

Only affiliate with the very best advertisers

If you are not yet in a position to be able to charge CPMs or tenancy fees, affiliate marketing, or to use its more contemporary moniker performance marketing, is far from dead and the CPA route can still be extremely lucrative; Azam Marketing and many others still make a pretty penny from commission-based lead generation.

It’s essential to diligently research each advertiser you’re looking to partner with (I have written a guide for my staff to use when appraising which affiliate programs to consider partnering with and it comes to several thousand words long – without a shadow of doubt it’s the most valuable document in our company as advertising the right / wrong advertiser on a commission-only basis can make / lose us tens of thousands of dollars).

You should try to pick advertisers that pay generous commissions: 75 cents here and $2 there – which is the kind of earnings one makes on the affiliate program of Amazon and many other retailers on an eventual sale (if, indeed, they don’t either legally or illegally try to wriggle out of paying the commission at all) – is not going to earn you enough net profit to even put a smile on your face when sauntering into your local dollar store.

Critically, the tracking must work (which I will emphasise it doesn’t on a regular basis for many advertisers and networks) and the advertiser must have multiple forms of tracking to maximise the chances of your sale being tagged back to you. Ideally they should pay recurring commissions on future sales made by what is your customer.

For much more insight on picking the most lucrative affiliate programs, please read my article here: 10 Hot Tips on Finding the Right Affiliate Program or Business Opportunity.

Rather than just funnelling a customer to an advertiser and losing them forever, it’s essential to add him or her to one’s own database too so that you can market to them again.

After going through quite a few challenging years over the last two decades since we started in affiliate marketing, in recent years Azam Marketing has been more profitable than ever. You should study this blog, where my team and I have scripted many articles revealing how we transformed our business by migrating away from an over-dependence on the affiliate channel.

Affiliate marketing is not going the way of the dodo. Become a more astute marketer and the online world’s your oyster!

In her down-to-earth, sincere and often humorous style, Rosalind Gardner guides you through the entire process of building an affiliate marketing business on the ‘Net. In 220+ pages, and more than 68,000 words, you’ll learn how to pick the best programs, negotiate a commission raise and save time, money and effort on everything from affiliate software to web hosting. To learn exactly how she does it, click here.P.S. known as the ‘bible’ of Affiliate Marketing, Rosalind Gardner’s Super Affiliate Handbook is a must-read for anyone who wants to become an affiliate marketer and successfully circumvent the hurdles I highlight above.

In a style that is friendly and humorous, the Super Affiliate Handbook is peppered with real examples of what Rosalind did to become one of the most recognizable Super Affiliates in the world. And she doesn’t just tell you what she did right — she exposes the mistakes she made as well — to help you avoid potential problems.

Exceptionally well written, Super Affiliate Handbook covers absolutely everything you need to know about making money as an affiliate marketer.

I HIGHLY recommended it.

Get the Super Affiliate Handbook today!







Azam Marketing has now been accredited to be on The Recommended Agency Register!

We’re delighted to announce that Azam Marketing has officially been awarded Recommended Supplier Status by the Recommended Agencies Register (RAR) following a rigorous review by RAR.

RAR independently interviews clients of digital agencies throughout the UK to get feedback about their experience. Clients review the agencies they use confidentially, allowing them to honestly share their experiences.

This week, thanks to the highly recommended ratings left by our clients, we officially became a RAR Recommended AgencyThe accreditation is based on feedback from our clients against certain criteria: firstly, the clients give a score out of 100 for each service bought from us, secondly they give scores for our service levels including creativity, value for money and the ability to deliver on time, and finally they provide written feedback on how we handled their account.

Only agencies that are highly rated by multiple clients during this process become recommended by the RAR, which is why we are so pleased to be on the register.

The RAR exists to reduce the risks for companies in sourcing, selecting and engaging with suppliers. They state: “We help clients find their perfect agencies. And we help agencies find their perfect clients.”

You may see RAR liking and congratulating Azam on Twitter for being featured in their directory in the screenshot here:

The Recommended Agencies Register (RAR) congratulating Azam on Twitter for being listed in their directory of the most highly rated agencies. Click here to see larger image

Check out our profile on the Recommended Agency Register here, and to talk to us about how our expertise can help your business to bloom, call our Customer Services Manager John Mitchell on +44 (0) 20 33 55 4334 or email enquiry [at] azam.net .







Nadeem Azam giving a presentation to entrepreneurs at London's Excel Centre

My Incubator Ventures is a business incubator offering advice and knowledge to the online business community. They recently invited our CEO to be interviewed by them to talk about Azam Marketing and provide tips to enterpreneurs on how to succeed in the cut-and-thrust world of business.

The conversation was conducted as a live Twitter interview. As the necessary relevant ‘at’ and ‘hashtag’ to each response meant the replies had to be even shorter than Twitter’s 140 character limit, the interview we are publishing below is as conducted with My Incubator Ventures along with some additional words from Nadeem to more fully answer some of the questions posed.

Thanks for joining us today Nadeem Azam. For those that don’t know could you just explain to us what it is you do?

Hi! Thanks for having me. I run a digital marketing and design agency which helps businesses get more customers.

What inspired you to start up your business?

I was working as a print journalist and predicted the net would dominate the landscape in the future. So, after a year of research and preparatory work, I started Azam in 1997.

Most people were negative about my decision to jump from print to digital, saying the internet was very niche and would not have much of a future, but I proved them wrong. I had spent an enormous amount of time researching the nascent internet, whereas my critics were, I presume, basing their opinions on their own unwillingness to move with the times and take risks.

What makes your business unique and differentiates you from your competitors?

As probably the oldest established digital agency in the UK our unparalleled expertise means we are much more likely to hit the bullseye. I am obsessed with the concept of “over-delivering” for clients and that enables us to produce spectacular results.

What has been your biggest challenge as a business owner and how have you met that challenge?

There have been numerous challenges from a complete lack of start-up finance to recruiting talented staff with rare technical skills but I am blessed that God has rewarded me for my persistence.

What would you say is your proudest business moment so far?

My biggest delight is when our clients regularly tell me they are thrilled with the results we’ve produced for their businesses.

How many hours a day do you work on average?

It averages at about 14 hours a day, 7 days a week. Estée Lauder said “I never dreamed about success. I worked for it.”

What does success look like to you?

In a service-sector business, client satisfaction is my number one goal. My staff get tired of me saying “The Customer is King!”

How has your business evolved since its launch in 1997?

In digital, unless you are willing to turn aspects of your business upside down every couple of years you will probably not thrive. The reason we still prosper after 19 years is because I obsessively study industry trends and stay 12 steps ahead of others.

Where do you envision your company in 5 or 10 years?

We have got massive plans, which we are currently working on behind the scenes. For instance, I intend to use my journalism background to launch an innovative digital publishing business. There is a relative dearth of quality written material on the web.

Finally what advice would you give to other entrepreneurs looking to start up a business?

I mentor several entrepreneurs and always advise them to constantly study top-line metrics and react accordingly (my nose is stuck in Excel spreadsheets half the day long to scrutinise figures, spot challenges and trends, and consider strategies to improve operations).

One of the biggest reasons I see for business folk not succeeding is they – understandably – veer towards spending too much of their time on the tasks they enjoy doing, rather than what is necessary to do to genuinely satisfy their customers and to grow.

You may find previous radio, television, print and web interviews with Nadeem in this blog and elsewhere online, such as this one in South Korea’s renowed OhMyNews International.










Our gurus build stunning responsive websites that work on all platforms

Azam’s award-winning design and development team has finished building a website for a leading law firm in Kensington, London. It has been built to be fully responsive i.e. show on multiple platforms, including PCs, tablets and mobiles, and to rank well in search engines. The website adopts a contemporary minimalist look and you can study it in all its glory at Bromptons.net.

We are delighted to announce this means we have now completed our 400th web build project!

Azim Suleman, the Principal Solicitor of Bromptons Solicitors, states that Azam Marketing offered:

“A thoroughly innovative, refreshing and professional approach to designing our website.

No detail was too small to escape Azam Marketing’s scrutiny. The agency worked to exacting standards to achieve our desired goal.

We are delighted and thrilled with the unique design of our website, which is a testimony to Azam’s dedication, expertise and market-savvy approach.”

Our customers are always thrilled with Team Azam’s twenty hours a day, seven days a week availability to service their needs and the attention to detail we show in our hunger to build the best possible websites for them. You can see an example of what another client says about us here:

“In the last five years Azam Marketing’s Design team has delivered us tons of quality websites that not only look beautiful but more importantly have out-performed the competition with the super smart web technologies delivered to us.

In my opinion it’s highly advantageous for our business to work with Azam Marketing and get constant feedback on the ever changing online trends.”

Malcolm Baxter, CEO, Cyberquest Technologies UK

Azam’s design wizards have a level of experience that is second to none and have been at the cutting edge for so long that we won a Yahoo! Website-of-the-Week award more than a decade ago. Our team of content writers, branding experts, graphic designers, web programmers and project managers collaborate closely with each others and with clients to build websites that not only make use of the latest web technologies but are easy to navigate and aligned to the client’s needs aesthetically, whether it is to be graceful, sleek, effervescent or punchy.

If you’d like to find out more about what our team can do for your business, please take a look at our corporate website’s design section.

For more information you are invited to email us at enquiries [at] azam.net or give us a call anytime on at our UK office on +44 (0) 20 33 55 4334 or our US office on +1 (760) 684-8120 – we are available for our clients 365 days a year.







Premium domain names and established websites for sale
In the last month Azam Marketing has completed the transactions to sell another three domain names, which means our tally of domain names and websites sold for ourselves and our clients has reached the big 50!

We’ve been trading domains and websites for over a decade, so selling 50 properties in that time shows how challenging a niche it is and how difficult it can be to find serious buyers. But we’ve been able to generate a steady trickle of sales each and every year, and have obtained some very high value sales, so are thrilled at what we’ve been fortunate enough to have achieved.

Since our inception in the 1990s, Azam has grown an enviable portfolio of domain names. Some of these are undeveloped and others have websites on them, with some of the sites being over a decade old.

Our Management’s direction of business growth for 2017 and beyond means our schedules are likely to be jam-packed with projects that will not allow us time to develop some of the web properties as we were originally intending. Therefore we are willing to sell them.

You can see the prime domain names and established websites we are willing to consider offers for on this page. There is a PDF there with details about the individual domain names and websites. To celebrate our 50th sale, we can’t offer 50% off the prices, but will give a generous reduction of half that, 25% off, until the 30th of this month!

top-domain-names-for-saleA huge advantage of acquiring Azam Marketing’s domains and websites is many have been running for several years and have dozens of quality, aged inbound links. So rather than slogging away forever to build your online presence and attract traffic to your website, you will take a shortcut to success.

A domain name is not just something one types on a keyboard – it is a brand, printed on letterheads, business cards, advertisements, maybe even company cars, pens, carrier bags etc. A premium domain name is the equivalent of having your business located at a prestigious address in the ‘real world’ and will significantly enhance your reputation in the eyes of others and the resultant income from your venture.

It’s also worth bearing in mind that in this day and age more and more people are accessing websites on mobiles and tablets, so it’s more important than ever to have a short domain name to make it easier for people to type in the name on their mobile devices.

If you’d like to put in an offer for any of our valuable websites or domain names, email us at buy [at] azam.net . You are also welcome to give us a call at our UK office on +44 (0) 20 33 55 4334 or our US office on +1 (760) 684-8120 anytime.







Google has had a generous initiative to provide free advertising for non-profit organisations for many years, but a straw-poll Azam Marketing has conducted over the last month has shown that, even within the online marketing profession, 87% of people have not heard of it. As Hubspot have said, it is the “biggest missed opportunity in non-profit marketing”!

Google’s program is called Ad Grants and is basically a nonprofit edition of AdWords, Google’s online advertising tool. Google Ad Grants enables nonprofit organizations to promote their missions and initiatives on Google search result pages through a whopping $10,000.00 each month in free AdWords advertising spend.

The infographic and video below provide introductions to the program:


Nonprofit organizations can apply for the grant from Google as long as they fall within the organization eligibility requirements outlined by Google. The ads are displayed in the same search results as the paid advertisers

Watch Google’s video promoting the program here:


To be eligible for Google Grants an organization must:

  • Hold current and valid charity status (for example, in the UK you must be registered with the respective Charity Commission for your nation, or in the US you must have a current 501(c)(3) status)
  • Acknowledge and agree to Google Grant’s required certifications regarding how to receive and use donations obtained from the grant
  • Have a website that is both functioning and provides adequate detail on your nonprofit


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