Results 1 to 14 of 14
  1. #1
    Outsourced Program Manager Nathan Weinberg's Avatar
    Join Date
    September 8th, 2008
    Location
    New York
    Posts
    68
    What incentives do you respond to?
    Here's a question for affiliates:

    We recently made an offer on one of our programs: If you put up our Deal of the Day banner for the month of May on a reasonably popular page (and we will review to approve your placement), you will receive a $50 gift card for use on the merchant's site, plus a 2% bump in commission on all sales for the month.

    Well, May is over, and no takers. We'll offer it, or a revised version, in June, but I'm wondering why we didn't hear any responses. A bunch of affiliates put the banner up, with thousands of impressions, so why wouldn't they just email us with the URL in order to get the free bonuses?

    So, two questions: What do you think our affiliates don't like about this sort of incentive? And, what sort of incentives do you respond to? And I don't mean which ones you like (everyone likes a bump in commission), I mean which ones make you go out and specifically increase your marketing with a program.
    [FONT=Century Gothic][SIZE=2]Nathan Weinberg[/SIZE][/FONT]
    [SIZE=1]Outsourced Program Manager
    Blue Cherry Group
    :envelope:[/SIZE] [SIZE=1] nweinberg(at)bluecherrygroup(dotcom) :telephone[/SIZE] [SIZE=1]646.290.8127 x203[/SIZE]

  2. #2
    Moderator MichaelColey's Avatar
    Join Date
    January 18th, 2005
    Location
    Mansfield, TX
    Posts
    16,232
    Moderator Note: Moved to the Merchant Best Practices Forum

    How did you promote it? This is the first I'm hearing about it. (I'm not sure if I'm in any of your programs.) In a newsletter? How prominently? As a standalone email? What subject? Did you promote it through other channels that you use to communicate with affiliates (Twitter, Facebook, ABW, etc.)?

    The incentive sounds fine. Probably the only thing I would add to it would be an option to get the 2% bump permanently if they hit some sort of sales threshold for the month.

    To me, it just sounds like you didn't do an effective job of getting the word out.
    Michael Coley
    Amazing-Bargains.com
     Affiliate Tips | Merchant Best Practices | Affiliate Friendly? | Couponing | CPA Networks? | ABW Tips | Activating Affiliates
    "Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world." Nelson Mandela

  3. #3
    Outsourced Program Manager Nathan Weinberg's Avatar
    Join Date
    September 8th, 2008
    Location
    New York
    Posts
    68
    Quote Originally Posted by MichaelColey View Post
    To me, it just sounds like you didn't do an effective job of getting the word out.
    Oh yeah, definitely. We only promoted it in our regular newsletter, and even there I feel that it could have been more prominent. We'll try pushing it out in social channels as well, and see about extending the commission increase longer for those who really take advantage of the incentive.

    It was our costumes affiliate program. I'm pretty sure board rules don't let me say more than that.
    [FONT=Century Gothic][SIZE=2]Nathan Weinberg[/SIZE][/FONT]
    [SIZE=1]Outsourced Program Manager
    Blue Cherry Group
    :envelope:[/SIZE] [SIZE=1] nweinberg(at)bluecherrygroup(dotcom) :telephone[/SIZE] [SIZE=1]646.290.8127 x203[/SIZE]

  4. #4
    Moderator MichaelColey's Avatar
    Join Date
    January 18th, 2005
    Location
    Mansfield, TX
    Posts
    16,232
    Do you know what sort of open rates you get in your regular newsletter? (Rhetorical question - you don't need to share.) It seems like featuring that in the newsletter (subject and prominent placement) could have increased your open rates. I don't know what sort of subject you used, but something like "Monthly Affiliate Newsletter" or "May Affiliate Newsletter" or "May Newsletter" likely won't get opened by most. If you're doing a special promo or have special creatives for an upcoming holiday or special offers, reference that in the subject.
    Michael Coley
    Amazing-Bargains.com
     Affiliate Tips | Merchant Best Practices | Affiliate Friendly? | Couponing | CPA Networks? | ABW Tips | Activating Affiliates
    "Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world." Nelson Mandela

  5. Thanks From:

  6. #5
    Network Rep & ABW Ambassador Carolyn - ShareASale's Avatar
    Join Date
    September 6th, 2005
    Posts
    2,664
    You might also contact your network to see what avenues they might have for disseminating your offer. Within the ShareASale forum, we maintain a monthly thread where merchants can post their affiliate promotions, and that helps. I use that thread to find content for our monthly newsletter, which goes out to all active, opt-in affiliates within the network.

  7. #6
    .
    Join Date
    January 18th, 2005
    Posts
    2,973
    First, I'm still "on hiatus" from publisher-role work right now, so I didn't see this opportunity. And second, I generally do NOT respond to "incentives" of this type.

    However, this offer might have tempted me: a $50 gift card for use on the merchant's site sounds like a very good offer, assuming that I am interested in what the merchant sells.

    One issue I can see is the requirement of of a "reasonably popular page" plus your approval -- publishers might be concerned that they'd go to the trouble of offering a placement, only to be rejected (or ignored). Basically, any "strings" on the offer are likely to discourage people from trying -- but of course, you don't want to just hand out $50 gift cards to anybody who asks.

    Another issue might be publishers' recent experience with a similar-sounding offer from panties.com, in which the advertiser deliberately tried to cheat publishers.

    FYI, I am never incentivized by temporary "percentage bumps" unless I am already seeing meaningful earnings from that advertiser.

    Michael is probably right to suggest that you examine your "open rate" for the newsletter. Was the offer in the subject, or was this "buried"?

    Remember that many serious publishers participate in many dozens (or hundreds, or even thousands) of affiliate programs, in addition to other advertising. Even when I am actively working in my "publisher-role," I rarely read newsletters or other advertiser messages.

    Let's see: looking at just email from May, I see an average of about 50 emails per day from "affiliate-program" advertisers, many of which are auto-filtered into special folders (example: "Program Changes," which I read, and "Newsletters," which I almost never read). Some of those deserve immediate attention ("commission change notification," "program is ending," "change to program agreement"), while others will go into my task-queue ("new improved datafeed," "new products in datafeed," "datafeed updated"). But I simply ignore many others ("MerchantName May Newsletter," "Spring Savings," "More Great Deals," "Memorial Day Reminder"). Even if you unconditionally offered me a free car, computer, or Hawaii vacation, I'd never see the offer if it were buried in a "newsletter."

  8. #7
    Outsourced Program Manager Nathan Weinberg's Avatar
    Join Date
    September 8th, 2008
    Location
    New York
    Posts
    68
    Some good points from everyone, some of which we already follow, and some of which we have to start doing.

    To specifically address Mark's points:

    Strings: Right, we can't just give out gift cards to everyone, so is there a better way? Perhaps, everyone who delivers x,000 impressions will receive it (after we've verified that the banner is not being auto-refreshed by a bot, of course), even if they don't email us?

    Panties: That is where I got the idea! I examined the furor over that thread, and thought, "Clearly, publishers liked the offer, but it needs to be better handled so there is no worry of fraud from my side". So, my plan was: Give everyone who puts up the banner, regardless of performance, once I approve it, the bonus. But you're saying even the approval string was too much?

    We're definitely going to look into how we can get more people to open the newsletter. Our open rates are no worse than other programs, but I'm thinking that in order to boost this promotion, should I include the incentive in a 100% separate email, and not with our new coupons?
    [FONT=Century Gothic][SIZE=2]Nathan Weinberg[/SIZE][/FONT]
    [SIZE=1]Outsourced Program Manager
    Blue Cherry Group
    :envelope:[/SIZE] [SIZE=1] nweinberg(at)bluecherrygroup(dotcom) :telephone[/SIZE] [SIZE=1]646.290.8127 x203[/SIZE]

  9. #8
    http and a telephoto
    Join Date
    January 18th, 2005
    Location
    NYC
    Posts
    17,708
    Mark, I hope you are the exception to the rule, because we send out newsletters with banners and deals codes in them to make affiliates lives easier. We *do* see sales increases after newsletters go out, as long as they have an appropriate subject line. We also get thank you notes from affiliates for including the deals and bringing them to their attention.

    To go along with what Michael said, it might be worth it for your company to pay the $75 for an announcement here, as well as getting the info out in Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn. When I tweet a link to a thread here about incentives we see an immediate increase of "guests" in the thread, so they are getting the info they might miss in a newsletter.

    Use all your communication channels!
    Deborah Carney
    TeamLoxly.com BookGoodies.com ABCsPlus.com

  10. Thanks From:

  11. #9
    Outsourced Program Manager Nathan Weinberg's Avatar
    Join Date
    September 8th, 2008
    Location
    New York
    Posts
    68
    Do you see pretty good boosts from the thread itself? It might pay to do that.
    [FONT=Century Gothic][SIZE=2]Nathan Weinberg[/SIZE][/FONT]
    [SIZE=1]Outsourced Program Manager
    Blue Cherry Group
    :envelope:[/SIZE] [SIZE=1] nweinberg(at)bluecherrygroup(dotcom) :telephone[/SIZE] [SIZE=1]646.290.8127 x203[/SIZE]

  12. #10
    The "other" left wing davidh's Avatar
    Join Date
    January 18th, 2005
    Location
    Boston
    Posts
    3,492
    Temporary commission bumps are not much of an incentive at all. In most cases, when new things are added on a site, it may take a month or so for that material to get indexed and gain a bit of traction. So if an affiliate takes the offer and spends several hours, or an entire day, adding new material to his/her site, the end result may very well be that the only "extra" commission they make amounts to little more than the price of a happy meal at mcdonalds, IF they manage to slip a sale or two in before the commission bump gets retracted.

    If it's viable to offer 2% additional commission "this month", then why would it not be viable in the long term? Permanent commission adjustment is the best incentive of all to somebody who is in it for the long haul. And it's easier to work with merchants who want to move forward and upward, than with those who ask us to run around in circles chasing our own tails.
    CUSTOM BANNERS by GRAPHICS CANDY ~ Banner Sets and Website Graphics ~ Professional design, reasonable rates
    DESIGNER DOG CHECKS ~ We double-dog dare ya to write one!

  13. Thanks From:

  14. #11
    Beachy Bill's Avatar
    Join Date
    November 20th, 2005
    Posts
    8,266
    I am not an affiliate of yours - but can offer a bit of advice from my point of view (as an affiliate - not from one of our merchant programs). Unless I am in a great relationship with a particular merchant I almost never open "newsletter" email. Might not be a good approach but that's the way I do it. Most of the merchants for whom I actively promote are already active here at ABW - few others grab my attention.
    Bill / Marketing Blog @ 12PM - Current project: Resurrecting my "baby" at South Baltimore..
    Cute Personal Checks and Business Checks
    If you are too busy to laugh you are too busy.

  15. #12
    Moderator MichaelColey's Avatar
    Join Date
    January 18th, 2005
    Location
    Mansfield, TX
    Posts
    16,232
    Quote Originally Posted by markwelch View Post
    But I simply ignore many others ("MerchantName May Newsletter," "Spring Savings," "More Great Deals," "Memorial Day Reminder"). Even if you unconditionally offered me a free car, computer, or Hawaii vacation, I'd never see the offer if it were buried in a "newsletter."
    Quote Originally Posted by loxly View Post
    Mark, I hope you are the exception to the rule, because we send out newsletters with banners and deals codes in them to make affiliates lives easier.
    Quote Originally Posted by Bill View Post
    Unless I am in a great relationship with a particular merchant I almost never open "newsletter" email.
    I'm in the same boat with Mark and Bill. Most "monthly newsletters" just get ignored. The subject line is going to have to draw me in for me to even open it. I'm not sure if we're exceptions or if we're the rule, but I'm sure those of us who ignore most newsletters are a significant group.
    Michael Coley
    Amazing-Bargains.com
     Affiliate Tips | Merchant Best Practices | Affiliate Friendly? | Couponing | CPA Networks? | ABW Tips | Activating Affiliates
    "Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world." Nelson Mandela

  16. #13
    Moderator MichaelColey's Avatar
    Join Date
    January 18th, 2005
    Location
    Mansfield, TX
    Posts
    16,232
    Quote Originally Posted by loxly View Post
    To go along with what Michael said, it might be worth it for your company to pay the $75 for an announcement here, as well as getting the info out in Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn.
    Quote Originally Posted by Nathan Weinberg View Post
    Do you see pretty good boosts from the thread itself? It might pay to do that.
    How many affiliates getting active would it take to justify a $75 ad? I suspect for most merchants, even just one active affiliate would turn that into a very positive ROI.

    To be honest, an even better value here on ABW for OPMs is an OPM Sub-Forum. The exposure you get to affiliates (and merchants!) and the ability to which you can promote your merchants is worth far more than the annual fee. Many OPMs have built and grown their businesses tremendously here.
    Michael Coley
    Amazing-Bargains.com
     Affiliate Tips | Merchant Best Practices | Affiliate Friendly? | Couponing | CPA Networks? | ABW Tips | Activating Affiliates
    "Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world." Nelson Mandela

  17. #14
    http and a telephoto
    Join Date
    January 18th, 2005
    Location
    NYC
    Posts
    17,708
    Quote Originally Posted by MichaelColey View Post
    How many affiliates getting active would it take to justify a $75 ad? I suspect for most merchants, even just one active affiliate would turn that into a very positive ROI.

    To be honest, an even better value here on ABW for OPMs is an OPM Sub-Forum. The exposure you get to affiliates (and merchants!) and the ability to which you can promote your merchants is worth far more than the annual fee. Many OPMs have built and grown their businesses tremendously here.
    I was using the announcement as a way to get started, an OPM forum *is* the best deal to engage affiliates on a regular basis. As I said, I post our newsletters here in our OPM and in the Viator forum so that affiliates that don't get the newsletters or don't read them, have a second opportunity to see them, plus potential affiliates get to see what we are doing and possibly sign up if they see something they want to promote. Plus we do updates here that we don't email out in a newsletter.

    We also set up a Team Loxly twitter account that now pulls the RSS feed from our forum and puts it out on Twitter and it will soon be integrated to our Facebook page as well. So posting here at ABW goes out to a bunch of places automatically
    Deborah Carney
    TeamLoxly.com BookGoodies.com ABCsPlus.com

  18. Newsletter Signup

+ Reply to Thread

Similar Threads

  1. Cj - Please Respond!
    By Gr_Sacc in forum Commission Junction - CJ
    Replies: 13
    Last Post: September 16th, 2005, 01:42 PM
  2. Someone tell me how to respond to this!!!
    By oranges in forum Midnight Cafe'
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: March 3rd, 2004, 07:35 PM
  3. Please respond to my PM
    By bigchuck in forum ShareASale - SAS
    Replies: 0
    Last Post: May 23rd, 2003, 06:39 PM

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •