An Interview with Daniel Gillaspia
I’m Daniel and I’m the founder of the credit card rewards and travel blog, UponArriving.com. I’m a former attorney who turned my hobby into a side hustle and then eventually into a full-time business over the span of a few years. I’m regularly pumping out credit card-related content on a daily basis and also just jumped on YouTube.
How did you get started in affiliate marketing? What keeps you excited you about it?
I sort of backed in to affiliate marketing. I started a travel blog in 2014 with my eyes on passive income but with no real plan or knowledge on how to make that happen. Over time, I started to develop an expertise in the travel/credit cards niche and it just made sense to make the most out of the opportunity to get into affiliate marketing. The lifestyle that comes with passive income is what keeps me excited. I know what it’s like to be stuck in an office for 60+ hours a week and now it’s an entirely different life with the freedom I always dreamed about.
What is one piece of advice you’d give to a newbie affiliate marketer? And what is one piece of advice they should ignore?
I would say to focus on building trust with a core reader base and don’t ever sacrifice that trust for short-term gains. It can be tough to pass on certain products or deals when you know how much you stand to benefit, but if you put your readers first, you’ll be way better off in the long-term (and should be able to sleep well at night). One bit of advice to ignore is don’t always listen to people who try to scare you out of a niche simply because it’s too saturated or competitive. If you have the drive and can put together the necessary resources, I’m a firm believer that you can make a big enough dent in just about any niche to sustain yourself (and you can always sub-niche down). With that said, some very competitive niches are definitely going to be more of an uphill battle and might not be the best pick for people looking for easier affiliate marketing routes.
What has been your favorite mistake? A mistake that in retrospect led to a great lesson and progress in your affiliate marketing?
One of my biggest mistakes was “writing for myself.” I put out content that I thought would be effective and relatable to a person like myself and not for the vast majority of my readers. I soon realized that I needed to cater to the masses which meant employing marketing strategies that I didn’t think would necessarily be effective on myself. I now pretty much throw my own preferences and inclinations out of the equation when I write, which helps me to also deliver content on a “not-so expert level” that is more relatable and helpful to the masses.
What is one piece of software or a web service (besides Geniuslink) that allows you to to be more effective as an affiliate marketer?
Google Trends is a fantastic tool and can come in handy when researching niches, topics, and keywords. If you are dealing with a topic, niche, or an area that emerged within a single state or region, you can use Google Trends to help predict how that niche will emerge nation wide and that’s a trick I’ve found pretty useful.
How do you continue to educate yourself as an affiliate marketer? What are some of your favorite resources for learning?
I stay pretty locked in to many different types of podcasts and YouTube channels. I’m big on podcasts like the Tim Ferriss podcast that focus on how to do things better and be more productive. But I’ve also started to get a little bit more macro with things and have been pursuing books to help build that foundation of knowledge that can be extremely helpful in taking things to the next level. Books like Influence: The Psychology of Persuasion are great in helping you to get the bigger picture of how marketing really works.
If people wanted to connect with you, where should we point them to?
People can hit me up on Instagram, my contact page, or simply drop a comment on my YouTube channel.