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  1. #1
    Member LoneWolf's Avatar
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    Question Why Would I Join as a 2nd Level Affiliate?
    I ran across my first 2 tier affiliate program today and it begs the question -- why would I sign up under another affiliate instead of signing up directly with the merchant?

    I see the benefit for the 1st tier to have sub-affiliates. What is the benefit to the sub-affiliate?

    Thanks

  2. #2
    The "other" left wing davidh's Avatar
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    You would be your own first tier, no? And would be able to refer subaffiliates as well? Being somebody else's subaffiliate referral should make no difference to you, unless there's some cockamamey scheme where you would get a lower commission than the person who referred you.
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  3. #3
    Moderator MichaelColey's Avatar
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    Some affiliates like two-tier programs, but I think most of us would rather get the full commission to ourselves. We're in the business to generate sales, not recruit other affiliates.
    Michael Coley
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  4. #4
    Moderator bibby's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MichaelColey View Post
    Some affiliates like two-tier programs, but I think most of us would rather get the full commission to ourselves. We're in the business to generate sales, not recruit other affiliates.
    I agree.

  5. #5
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    Some of the 2nd tier affiliate programs are designed for the 1st tier to help the 2nd tier set up and promote the program with a lot less knowledge and work for the 2nd tier. 2nd tier is an easy way for someone to get into affiliate marketing.

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  6. #6
    Roll Tide mobilebadboy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MichaelColey View Post
    Some affiliates like two-tier programs, but I think most of us would rather get the full commission to ourselves. We're in the business to generate sales, not recruit other affiliates.
    Who says you don't get full commission just for referring someone? I've got affiliates under me with a few programs (although no longer Allposters since I kicked them to the curb). But I was getting full commission and commission off them as well.

    I've got a sub-aff on SAS that signed up under me years ago and has been making 5-6 figures a year. So I get whatever I make, as well as a percentage of his 5-6 figures (for doing nothing). I just can't see the flaw in that. *shrug*

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  7. #7
    Member LoneWolf's Avatar
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    I still don't see the point in being in the 2nd tier unless there is some benefit derived. Why not just join at the 1st tier? Even if I get the same commission that I would if I joined direct, there has to be something more to get me to sign up under another affiliate.

  8. #8
    Moderator MichaelColey's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mobilebadboy View Post
    Who says you don't get full commission just for referring someone?
    If a merchant had 15% that they could justify paying out to affiliates based on their margins and desired profit margin, most who run two-tier programs would "split" that between the two tiers. For instance, they might pay 10% to the first tier and 5% in the second tier.

    Would you rather join a program that pays 10% or 15%?
    Michael Coley
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  9. #9
    Member LoneWolf's Avatar
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    If I understand the tiers correctly (and I've had brushes with MLM's so I think I do) the primary affiliate gets a full commission on each sale they make directly. They have sub-affiliates who get a commission (either full or partial) and the primary gets a smaller commission as well.

    I know that HubPages (which isn't an affiliate program, but a revenue sharing deal) gives the same deal to everyone who signs up, but if you refer someone then you also get a cut of HubPages share -- the other person still gets their full cut.

    I see the benefit to being a primary as my sub-affiliates would bring me commissions for sales that I don't have to work to get (that is the draw of MLM's too).

    What I don't see is the benefit to being the sub-affiliate. Does the primary have to offer them some sort of benefit? What is to stop a potential sub-affiliate from jumping ship and signing up as a primary?

  10. #10
    Moderator MichaelColey's Avatar
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    With two-tier affiliate programs, the first tier (the affiliate that referred the customer) gets one commission and the second tier (the affiliate that referred the affiliate that referred the customer, if there is one) gets a different (usually smaller) commission.
    Michael Coley
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  11. #11
    Affiliate Manager ParadigmWilliam's Avatar
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    Its nice to have 2nd tier programs if you have software designed to promote the network. Like some open source shopping carts have referral links for paypal and google checkout. They get a percentage of whatever you make.

    Or you write a great review on your blog about a new campaign from network X, well if someone reading your blog signs up to network X you get paid a commission.

    Depending on the type of affiliate you are, you may never use the 2nd tier program.
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  12. #12
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    Would anyone know if commission junction offer 2nd tier referal commissions?
    Like if I refer Bob to CJ and he makes $1000/yr income, and they offer me 5% for 2nd tier lifetime, so I'd get $50/yr for example.

    Are there any other market places that offer better deals for affiliates looking to signup lots of others sub-affiliates?

    I was just curious to know more about 2nd tier and what are some good options for affiliaties who have multiple sub affiliates that are interested in doing promotions on a broad range of products.

  13. #13
    Affiliate Manager BlogBonnieBlog's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by LoneWolf View Post
    What I don't see is the benefit to being the sub-affiliate. Does the primary have to offer them some sort of benefit? What is to stop a potential sub-affiliate from jumping ship and signing up as a primary?
    Well you can always jump ship, but if that 1st tier affiliate wrote a great article, etc. that convinced you to join the program, then why not use their link. They did in fact "refer" you to the program. It's technically nothing out of your pocket.

    But using Michael's example, I believe he is saying that if the 1st tier gets 2% for referring you and you get 15%, he'd rather see you get 17% and skip the tiers altogether.

    I'm sure there are a lot of people that teach affiliate marketing that probably refer people and those newbies have no idea that they are actually a "2nd tier" and know no different.

  14. #14
    Member LoneWolf's Avatar
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    Thanks for all the great answers everyone! If I understand it correctly, there is really no reason for signing up under another affiliate other than gratitude towards someone pointing you to a great program or possibly for mentoring you as you learn.

    It is more of a referral bonus with no responsibility towards the lower tiers once they've signed up.

    Is that an accurate assessment?

  15. #15
    VP of Business Development
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    Unfinished Business
    Not sure why this discussion ended with unanswered questions ???

    1. Most network providers who do offer multi-tier options can tailor programs to the needs of the affiliate. Next time you come across a two-tier, try contacting the AM and ask for a single payout offer. You may just get it - it makes no difference to the AM or company whether they pay 20% or 15%/5%.

    2. Signing up on the second level can have other benefits. If you know who your signed up with, they can possibly provide you with some insight into what has or what has not worked for them. It can also be the start of a networking relationship that leads to other profitable introductions.

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