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  1. #1
    ABW Ambassador ToughTurkey's Avatar
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    Should the AM be telling me this?
    After emailing an AM with a concern over new terms that are being implemented, and I get a response that includes the following...
    If you decide moving forward to promote an alternative company because itís better for your business model then we respect that.
    BTW, the issue was about the decision to drop commish for repeat customers. But regardless of the issue, I am surprised to see this suggestion coming from an AM. Of course if an affiliate is unhappy with terms they are free to stop promoting the merchant. But certainly its not a Best Practice for the AM themselves to suggest this to affiliates? Saying they respect the decision? Basically saying "who cares" if you promote us or not? Or do AM's get fed up with dealing with "complaining" affiliates, by friday afternoon they are saying things they don't mean.

    Another point made by the AM was
    The point of the affiliate channel is an acquisition channel.
    Is this the common thought amongst AM's? I thought the point of the affilate channel was to drive sales?

  2. #2
    Moderator MichaelColey's Avatar
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    I wouldn't really have an issue with the first quoted comment. He's just recognizing the potential consequences of his policy. Also, keep in mind that many times policies come from higher up than the AM.

    I think the most common purpose of the affiliate channel is to drive sales, but many look at it as just an acquisition channel. I think that's short-sighted, but it's relatively common. When I run across companies who place a high emphasis on new customer acquisition, I like to suggest that they set a moderate commission plus a new customer bounty.
    Michael Coley
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  3. #3
    ABW Ambassador ToughTurkey's Avatar
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    I like to think a good AM would be more like "before you decide to promote another merchant how about..." instead of what was said.

  4. #4
    http and a telephoto
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    I agree with you Tough Turkey, but if a merchant is implementing those terms then they aren't seeing the full value of the affiliate channel and corporate probably isn't giving the manager room to negotiate.
    Deborah Carney
    TeamLoxly.com BookGoodies.com ABCsPlus.com

  5. #5
    Super Dawg Member Phil Kaufman aka AffiliateHound's Avatar
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    I can read into it the AM disagreeing with the decision made from higher up, and maybe "encouraging" affiliates to leave as a way to show those higher ups that the new terms are a mistake are will damage the viability and growth of the program.

    Just maybe.
    Since June 10, 2012 a vegan aarf but still writing the Hound Dawg Sports Blog
    "If you don't have time to do it right, when will you have time to do it over?" -John Wooden;
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  6. #6
    http and a telephoto
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    Quote Originally Posted by AffiliateHound
    I can read into it the AM disagreeing with the decision made from higher up, and maybe "encouraging" affiliates to leave as a way to show those higher ups that the new terms are a mistake are will damage the viability and growth of the program.

    Just maybe.
    Yup, I read it as corporate dictating to the manager and him trying to be politely telling affs to leave so he can prove *his* point that the decision is a bad one.

  7. #7
    ABW Ambassador ToughTurkey's Avatar
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    Well I hadn't thought of that, it does sound a bit resigned.

  8. #8
    Half a Bubble Off Plumb RemodelingGuy's Avatar
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    TT....

    I'm thinking this was something that we all do at times...

    Start tapping on the keys, our brain working overtime and hitting the submit button before we should have...

    I'm seeing something there that was trying to be honest....

    Jimmy McDonald - Your Local Hard Working RemodelingGuy ( & SprinklerGuy - & GarageGuy )
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  9. #9
    Affiliate Manager Matt McWilliams's Avatar
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    It's clear that the AM is not:

    Paid on commission
    An owner of the company
    Very good at choosing his/her words

    While it may have come from a higher up and he may disagree with it, what good is it to force affiliates out?

    A better wording might be (assuming it to be true):

    I understand that this policy stinks right now. We still have the highest/very competitive commissions even with the change. We are also implementing/have recently implemented some new features that will really help you. Also, you will notice that conversions are up over the last few weeks due to some improvements, blah blah blah.

    Much better than saying, "if you want to take a hike, let me pack your bags," don't ya think?
    Matt McWilliams
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  10. #10
    ABW Ambassador Greg Rice's Avatar
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    I think most managers respect the affiliate's choice on who they promote. It's better than demanding they promote nobody else. Having said that, I think a better reply could have been "...we respect that but what would it take to be your main source for xxxxx?".

    I respect any affiliate's right to promote who they choose but I want to know how I can get the best coverage
    Greg Rice Affiliate Program Management
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  11. #11
    The Seal of Aproval rematt's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ToughTurkey
    After emailing an AM with a concern over new terms that are being implemented, and I get a response that includes the following...
    If you decide moving forward to promote an alternative company because itís better for your business model then we respect that.
    What's missing is the text of the e-mail that the OP sent to the AM. Perhaps there was something in that message that compelled the AM to respond in this manner.

    -rematt
    "I know that you believe you understand what you think I said, but I'm not sure you realize that what you heard is not what I meant." - Richard Nixon

  12. #12
    Certified Affiliate Manager sunshiner's Avatar
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    I would think that the AM might say something to the effect that they would pass your comment on to the higher up as they understand your concern and see if there is anything that can be worked out. I've had a similar concern with one of our merchants and currently we are doing a little test as to see how the sales are being affected.

  13. #13
    Half a Bubble Off Plumb RemodelingGuy's Avatar
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    I'm thinking that there are a ton of merchant wannabes that don't take affiliate marketing as seriously as they should......

    They throw someone into the "Affiliate Manager" position, just to see if it sticks...

    I think we have to let some of the newbies make a rotten mistake or two before we condemn them...

    Just my thoughts!

    Jimmy McDonald - Your Local Hard Working RemodelingGuy ( & SprinklerGuy - & GarageGuy )
    StartRemodeling.com .... MySprinklerGuy.com .... MyGarageGuy.com ....
    We're Bettering YOUR Life by Improving Where YOU Live It ...
    Do What You LOVE & LOVE What You Do! ....

  14. #14
    ABW Ambassador ToughTurkey's Avatar
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    They throw someone into the "Affiliate Manager" position, just to see if it sticks...
    That's exactly the situation.

    I think their program is about to jump the shark.

  15. #15
    Life is Supposed to be Fun! Rexanne's Avatar
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    As affiliates, when we get upset about a merchant change in terms or commission structure, we respond by flipping out a little because our security is threatened. Getting a response like the one above is pretty brutal, IMO.

    It's definitely like saying: Oh well, too bad. We don't need you so go ahead and try your luck with our competition. It IS dismissive and not at all something I'd want to hear when I'm freaking out and feeling insecure. Much like a relationship ... if you voice a feeling about how you're being treated and the significant other says: That's ME and if you don't like it, find someone else ..." we're not really ever gonna feel secure in the commitment of that relationship. The merchant obviously doesn't care about their affiliate channel and it's probably best to know that now instead of later.
    Peace,

    Rexanne

    Rexanne.com
    Loving Everyone's Child Creates Magic


  16. #16
    Kung Fu Master Eathan's Avatar
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    I think a lot is being read into this that we can't know or assume. The only sentence we have to go on is:

    If you decide moving forward to promote an alternative company because itís better for your business model then we respect that.
    This sentence isn't saying they don't care about the affiliate channel, nor is it saying "...don't like it? There's the door."

    Without the context of the original message and the rest of the reply any interpretation beyond "...if you choose to move on, we will respect that" is adding extra information and intent to the message that just isn't there.

    As for the question of acquisition or ongoing sales, the AM may have speaking about their affiliate channel verses affiliate marketing in general. Every program is different and some lean much harder towards acquisition with larger initial payouts while others offer longer term residuals, etc.
    Eathan Mertz

    Black Cat Mining - Gold Prospecting & Rockhounding Equipment

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