This may come as no surprise, but I really like reading and writing about businesses and marketing. I listen to a countless amount of YouTube channels that discuss business related topics, I subscribe to business magazines and most my favourite films are about successful business owners.
So, when I started getting adverts for a digital magazine called Trends that promised insights into emerging industries and growing businesses; I was very tempted. When one of the YouTube channels I subscribe to recommended Trends, I decided it was a good time to sign up.
Now I’m on Trends, I can say one thing with certainty; the YouTube channel that supplied the referral link I used probably was chasing an easy payout, as each signup would earn them $100. In terms of affiliate marketing, that’s a huge amount per signup, and shows that the recommendation was unlikely to be genuine.
There’s a reason why they are able to pay $100 per referral; because they charge $300 per year for their articles.
Value for money 💸
For comparison, GQ UK charges £38 for two years of subscription. Of course, they do advertise within their printed magazine, but each month you get tens of articles about business, fashion, etc. So, GQ offer £19 per year for a huge amount of content.
Trends charges over 10 times what GQ does, and around 6 times what the business magazine Courier does. Considering this is a very premium subscription service, how many articles does this get you? Now, this really pissed me off… only 4 articles per week (this could vary, but 4 is unacceptable for any week).
Quality over quantity? Maybe not… 🥴
Sure, 4 isn’t a lot of articles, but if each of them are a multi-thousand word essay diving into the specifics of a business or industry, I can overlook a lack of quantity.
Let’s take a look at one article: this one breaks down apps that have over 100,000 downloads but low user ratings, potentially showing high-potential with little competition. A great article idea, with thousands of apps to analyse you’d think this would warrant a big article with detailed analysis of each industry… Well, not really, the article is around 900 words and simply points to a handful of industries saying “Yeah there might be potential there”.
Worse yet, the article is not even their idea, it’s this guy’s idea which they’ve just taken a couple of bits from: https://gumroad.com/l/validatedideas
Other articles offer a similar level of surface level analysis. One article looked the Laundry Detergent industry for as an opportunity for brand creation. The article (summarised) essentially is “you can make up to 97% profit margin by selling laundry detergent”. Okay, that’s great, but there’s not really much insight beyond this.
For example, if you seriously want to make an argument for the industry being good for new brands, maybe include statistics about online vs in-store sales, seeing as you realistically won’t be able to convince Asda to stock your unproven product. Or maybe a proper breakdown of several companies within the industry, such as the industry leader vs a smaller niche brand.
In conclusion… Not good 👎
For a service as expensive as Trends, I’m quite pissed off that they fail to provide either the quality or quantity needed to justify their $300 price tag. I could go on, but I only wrote this to discourage my readers from wasting $1 on the initial 2 week trial.
The irony is that I could just promote Trends in this article and promote it to make $100 per referral, but I’m honestly so disappointed in the service that I could never justify the price… Unless you’re looking for an affiliate marketing opportunity.