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  1. #1
    ABW Ambassador
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    What is the shelf life of an affiliate manager, or a freelancer/consultant?

    What determines ones success? What causes one affiliate manager to fall, while another rises to the top?

    How would you rate an affiliate managers performance, and what categories should be on the score card?

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    Big Chuck

  2. #2
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    oh yeah... a couple of more.

    If you were hiring an affiliate manager, what track record would you look for? and, what kind of performance would you expect before deciding to give 'em the ax?

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    Big Chuck

  3. #3
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    just wondering if anyone had an opinion on this subject. I have a friend who is going to be looking for one, possibly, for the company he works for, and he wanted to know if I had any pointers in directing him.

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    Big Chuck

  4. #4
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    If I were a merchant the first thing I'd look for is an AM who could manage my expectations.....

  5. #5
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    Yeah. The highest expectation being that the advertiser get a good return on their investment on what they are spending on an affiliate manager, and their affiliate program the AM is managing.

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    Big Chuck

  6. #6
    Affiliate Marketing Consultant Andy Rodriguez's Avatar
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    Interesting question BC.

    I think attitude plays an important part, having the "can do" attitude is very important. Failure for a good AM is not an option. When faced with a mountain, a good AM goes around it, over it or digs straight through it.

    Good expereinced affiliate managers are not easy to find. IMO, based on personal experience, you need to have the right mixture of backgrounds. Here are some of the qualities you may want to look for:

    - Sales experience, commission only preferred.
    - Managerial experience, managing a large virtual commission only sales team.
    - Can do attitude, not willing to accept failure
    - Vison to see down the road and set goals accordingly
    - Ability to set "baby steps" in order to achieve the bigger goal
    - Ability to motivate, recognize and reward for performance
    - Experience with online marketing, advertising and p4p performance models
    - Proven, verifiable track record of success with other programs
    - Large network of known industry performers that can be tapped to quickly ramp up a program
    - Experience as an affiliate, in order to "know", "feel" and "experience" first hand the challenges and frustations your affiliate partners go through.
    - Last but not least, this is an industry where trust plays a major role. Your word has to be golden. No room for crooks on this side of the game.

    One important point to consider, a good, experienced, full time, in house AM will run a merchant anywhere from 70K to 150K per year. An outsourced AM, with the same skills and experience will run the same merchant an average of 30k - 60K. This is a job that doesn't require for the AM to be in house.

    I'm sure many others can add to this list, there are many damm good AM's here. Hope this may have helped you get closer to an answer.

    Cheers,

    AndyRodriguez.com
    Affiliate Program Management
    and Consulting Services
    P: (305) 412-3512
    C: (305) 785-4524
    E: doc@andyrodriguez.com
    W: www.andyrodriguez.com
    AIM: AffiliateDoctor

  7. #7
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    Thanks! That was more of what I was looking for. This friend's company has a new product; that is, there is a product like it already, but his company has a better version, and more user friendly. It is a software app. They need a good consultant/AM to get it out there. They feel that the popularity of their competitors product is a good indication that their product will be a bigger hit. They have done quite a bit of research, and analysis.

    -----------------------------
    Let's turn up the heat, put some feet to the fire!
    Affiliate marketing: are you making money, or getting ripped off by snake oil sellers?

  8. #8
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    I'll jump in here. It's probably not too different from most jobs. The shelf life of an AM really depends on how much they continue to learn and grow with the changing business rules. Just like, say, an IT professional, if you don't keep up with the newest technology and industry news, you're going to become out of date quickly.

    I'd say constant learning is what probably sets the great AMs apart from the rest. An eye towards the "big picture" of online and offline marketing as a whole is definitely a help. Knowing how to apply best practices and knowing when those best practices are out of date or should be changed is also a big factor.

    You can see an example of this in the affiliate programs of those who don't understand the parasite issue or who don't understand the impact of a company's keyword program as it affects their affiliate program. Right or wrong, if they don't at least KNOW of the issues, they can't really be making good decisions for their programs, right?

    For example - when I first got into the affiliate business in '98, things were MUCH different in terms of what we thought were best practices. Our program had over 250,000 affiliates who we couldn't possibly keep track of, and it included iGive, Ebates, and lots of other loyalty programs who were actually taking revenue from our general internet traffic, and we thought those guys were great. Anyway, I was out of the business from late 2000 through 2001, and when I got back into it, I couldn't just run this program they way we ran programs in the past - I had to do some serious catching up. And I'm not even "great" yet () - I'm just now getting fully up to speed.

    So anyway. As far as a track record, again, you have to take into account WHEN that record was set; things have changed and will continue to change so rapidly, that ideas that worked in the past won't always work today.

    I have no idea if this was a help or not, but it was at least interesting to me to sit here and think about it and write it out.

    [edited to add: Andy's great, definitely listen to him. That's totally practical advice he gave. Also, I happen to think that beyond the stuff that Andy mentioned, YOU (chuck) are a great resource to tell your friend the hands-on communication style that an AM needs. There's nothing like asking your target audience what they'd like in an AM.]

    -patrice

    patrice.colancecco.milligan
    affiliate.manager | eastwoodcompany.com
    e: patrice@eastwoodco.com | v: 610.323.2200x2206 | aim: patricemilligan
    ::visit.our.private.forum.at.abw::

  9. #9
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    Thanks Patrice! Good stuff. Staying on top of things, and the ability to move with the web is what my friend is looking ofr. He is going to selling a down loaded software app. (not parasitic) for home users. he needs someone who definitely has kept up with the growth of affiliate marketing.

    -----------------------------
    Let's turn up the heat, put some feet to the fire!
    Affiliate marketing: are you making money, or getting ripped off by snake oil sellers?

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