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  1. #1
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    Recruiting Affiliates
    Hi,

    I've been sending out thoughtful query emails to
    good potential partners, but the conversion rate has been
    quite low.

    Any suggestions on what to include - our list size, etc...- or just to keep it as much about them as possible?

    Any ideas/feedback appreciated.

    Thank you!

    Michael

  2. #2
    ABW Ambassador 2busy's Avatar
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    If you are individually emailing potential partners you might want to include statistical information they would find interesting such as your AOV and EPC, The network you are on if it is not in-house. Many sites receive so many unrelated, untargeted "offers" they just tune out all of them.

    ABW offers some low cost alternatives that gets your message out on your terms: Advertise at ABestWeb Affiliate Marketing Forums

    Good luck!

  3. #3
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    I've been sending out thoughtful query emails to good potential partners
    Lather, rinse, repeat

    I may only speak for myself, but as a full-time publisher, it's tough to grab my attention right now. I'm spending every waking hour tweaking the sites & trying to improve user experience ahead of the holiday season. Plus I have to keep a watchful eye out on google serp, and find time to line up the merchants who will get quicker promotion (when everyone has special offers, you can't promote everything at once!).

    The low conversion may not have anything to do with your program or efforts. But as 2busy said, make sure those potential partners are targeted...

  4. #4
    The slot machine that IS paid! Billy Kay's Avatar
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    I agree with t

    1. Any personal email I've ever rec'd saying I was a "perfect fit"... has always been the exact opposite.

    2. If your program is good, those affiliates will find you on their own

    3. It's Q4... I don't have time for anything new to add

    Best,
    Billy

  5. #5
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    I am in the same boat Michael. I spend about 6 hours a day looking for websites that might work with our program, trying to contact the webmaster and then following up with multiple emails and calls. I've been at this now for 2 months and right now I am converting at about 13%. Here's whats happening now; some of the sites that I sent emails to 2 months ago are contacting me back. My jobs is to "plant the seed" and then if they are interested, they will contact me. And if they don't then there is only like a gajillion other websites right?

    My biggest concerns is are they even getting the message and are they reading it? I don't know, but sending 4,5,6 emails (but NOT the same one over and over) sometimes get their attention. The key I've found is persistence and volume of prospects.

    But to actually answer your question other things that worked for me are:
    -personalizing the subject line of the message with their URL
    -using phrases to help them know you are not a spambot like "I emailed you last Tuesday, 11/2 but have not heard back"
    -including extensive contact information like IM accounts, Twitter, Skype, physical mailing address
    -keeping the message very concise to spark their interest. Honestly, in your first prospect email, all you're really finding out is if they are open to hearing about your program so I save all the stats for after I get their interest.
    -sending in-depth info in an professional proposal fashion via PDF on letterhead written in business letter style
    -and I cannot stress enough, persistence. Don't be afraid to send them a message once a week until you hear back.

  6. #6
    The Seal of Aproval rematt's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by PushPin View Post
    -and I cannot stress enough, persistence. Don't be afraid to send them a message once a week until you hear back.
    Not advisable. Annoying affiliates probably won't get you the desired response. Most of your other suggestions are good and can be effective. This last one will likely be counterproductive most of the time.

    -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

  7. #7
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    rematt- I have only recieved 1 message out of the literally hundreds of message I've sent with a flat out negative response. If you as an affiliate gets 1 email per week, either you are going to ignore it and continue to ignore it forever and no harm done or eventually you are going to read it. And thats my goal, to get you to read it. Then you will make a decision, either you want to hear more or you don't. If a prospect emails me back saying they are not interested, then atleast I know that I can stop emailing them. And usually they email me back with a reason they are not interested, which can also be very valuable feedback. But, if they are interested, and they end up signing up with me, then I think they would say its a good thing that I didn't give up.

  8. #8
    ABW Ambassador Greg Rice's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by PushPin View Post
    If you as an affiliate gets 1 email per week, either you are going to ignore it and continue to ignore it forever and no harm done or eventually you are going to read it. And thats my goal, to get you to read it.
    One email per week from how many affiliate managers? Keep in mind you're one of many who are recruiting affiliates. If all managers send 1 email per week to each prospective affiliate that affiliate has to wade through hundreds of emails just like yours. And that's on top of the hundreds or thousands of emails each week from other sources.
    Greg Rice Affiliate Program Management
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  9. #9
    Moderator MichaelColey's Avatar
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    I had a merchant who I was interested in promoting (but didn't have time to yet) who decided to call me once a week until I joined. About the third call, I told him to quit calling. About the fifth call, I told him in no uncertain terms that I would never work with him.

    Persistance may work, but it may drive many potential affiliates away for good.
    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

  10. #10
    Newbie Dani Bulatovic's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Greg Rice View Post
    One email per week from how many affiliate managers? Keep in mind you're one of many who are recruiting affiliates. If all managers send 1 email per week to each prospective affiliate that affiliate has to wade through hundreds of emails just like yours. And that's on top of the hundreds or thousands of emails each week from other sources.
    I completely agree with you. It's all about numbers.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by MichaelColey View Post
    About the third call, I told him to quit calling.
    That's where the whole thing feel apart. If someone tells me to stop contacting them, then I will. Lets say that they did stop calling you and 3 months down the line, they called you again saying remember me? Then maybe your schedule would have freed up by then and you can revisit the program. Where as, if they never followed up with you, you probably would never think about it again, since you are getting new offers from other programs every day. I will agree with everyone that there is a line where persistence become harassment. But if you want to get noticed in a sea of 100000 other messages, you can't send just one message and expect results.

  12. #12
    The Seal of Aproval rematt's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Greg Rice View Post
    One email per week from how many affiliate managers? Keep in mind you're one of many who are recruiting affiliates. If all managers send 1 email per week to each prospective affiliate that affiliate has to wade through hundreds of emails just like yours. And that's on top of the hundreds or thousands of emails each week from other sources.
    That's what I'm sayin'.

    Quote Originally Posted by PushPin View Post
    rematt- I have only recieved 1 message out of the literally hundreds of message I've sent with a flat out negative response. If you as an affiliate gets 1 email per week, either you are going to ignore it and continue to ignore it forever and no harm done or eventually you are going to read it. And thats my goal, to get you to read it. Then you will make a decision, either you want to hear more or you don't. If a prospect emails me back saying they are not interested, then atleast I know that I can stop emailing them. And usually they email me back with a reason they are not interested, which can also be very valuable feedback. But, if they are interested, and they end up signing up with me, then I think they would say its a good thing that I didn't give up.
    I consider ANY unwanted continuous solicitation as SPAM. I don't e-mail SPAMMERS to ask them to stop spamming. But in order to stop what I would consider SPAM from you, you propose that I spend even more time educating you on what is and isn't appropriate.

    Look at the responses so far...there seems to be a consensus that your approach is out of line. I have no problem finding programs that I want to join. I also have no problem eliminating those that appear to have weak or poor management.

    -wematt
    wesident wabble wouser
    "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

  13. #13
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    -and I cannot stress enough, persistence. Don't be afraid to send them a message once a week until you hear back.
    Wow, that is the worst thing you can do! You may have only received *one* negative response, but you pissed off all the rest! Has this actually worked where someone said "ok" after you emailed them multiple times?

    When OPMs did that to me (networks and some OPMs have forgotten that I don't run affiliate offers anymore, or they get my contact info from here or my website and are "confused" by what I do) - they get deleted. Sometimes they get a polite "take me off your list email", when that fails, they get noted as "someone NOT to work with and NOT to recommend others to work with".

    You don't want to be on that list for hundreds of potential affiliates.
    Deborah Carney
    TeamLoxly.com BookGoodies.com ABCsPlus.com

  14. #14
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    Ok I can see that I have throughly made everyone hate me here.
    I will take everyone comments into consideration as I move forward with my program.

  15. #15
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    No, we are trying to help you understand that something you are doing has probably been hurting your program. Education is key in this industry. The problem doesn't lie with *us* "hating" you, but with you engaging in a practice that is hurting you.
    Deborah Carney
    TeamLoxly.com BookGoodies.com ABCsPlus.com

  16. #16
    The Seal of Aproval rematt's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by PushPin View Post
    Ok I can see that I have throughly made everyone hate me here.
    Take what we've said for how it was meant, constructive criticism. No one hates you .

    We're all here to learn and grow.

    -rematt
    Last edited by rematt; November 10th, 2010 at 12:32 PM. Reason: Needed a hug.
    "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

  17. #17
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    Ok, well I guess I need to rethink my strategy. Can you give me advice on the ideal frequency in which to contact prospective affiliate via email? And at what point to give up?

  18. #18
    The Seal of Aproval rematt's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by PushPin View Post
    Can you give me advice on the ideal frequency in which to contact prospective affiliate via email? And at what point to give up?
    I don't remember ever becoming interested in a program that I learned about through e-mail outside of network program announcements. I really don't have a problem with a single e-mail, but if it doesn't garner results, assume that I'm not interested and move on.

    -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

  19. #19
    ABW Ambassador
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    Quote Originally Posted by PushPin View Post
    Ok, well I guess I need to rethink my strategy. Can you give me advice on the ideal frequency in which to contact prospective affiliate via email? And at what point to give up?
    Never. I have never even read an e-mail that has come from someone that I didn't already sign up with. I never will read one either.

    If you are a merchant that has what I want, then I will find you. The same will be true for other affiliates. Develop a great affiliate program, and you will never have to worry about getting affiliates interested.

  20. #20
    Affiliate Manager
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    As a new affiliate manager I'm learning all sorts of new things here! Loxly has been most helpful!

  21. #21
    Newbie Omni Mike's Avatar
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    I think like most things, there's really no cookie-cutter answer to this question. i can see both sides.

    Personally though, i believe that one of the responsibilities of an AM is to use all available resources to recruit good affiliates. If I run into a site that I think would make a good fit and they're not already an affiliate, I'll shoot over a quick "hey, here's my name, here are our offers, if you're interested, here's my contact info", but I'll drop it after maybe 2 emails. No sense beating a dead horse...

    Even if only 1 of the emails you send out lead to a signup, i think it's worth it.
    Last edited by Omni Mike; November 10th, 2010 at 03:55 PM.

  22. #22
    ABW Ambassador beachcom's Avatar
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    Lots of good points here.

    Billy's point about it being Q4 and not adding anything new is super strong. I spend most of my free time tweaking and re-tweaking. Just don't have to time to add new stuff.

    Julian also has a strong point...if you have something we need...we'll find you.

    Unsolicited "perfect fit" emails get trashed immediately..I don't waste what little time I have reading them.

    Unfortunately, this is probably the worst time of the year to try to "recruit" experienced affiliates.

  23. #23
    Affiliate Manager qualityunit's Avatar
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    I think, that most important is to get attention of your affiliate - what about to send him a box with your product to try it or just send him a cookies or anything else, what will catch his attention. When you will get attention of your affiliate, you can follow with statistic and other details.

    If you need some ideas how to catch attention of affiliates, try to read e.g. book of Jim Kukral: Attention! This book will make you money.
    [SIZE=3][FONT=Arial]Viktor Zeman[/FONT][/SIZE]
    [B][URL=http://www.qualityunit.com/]Quality Unit [/URL][/B] Founder and [B][URL=http://www.qualityunit.com/postaffiliatepro/]Post Affiliate Pro[/URL][/B] developer

  24. #24
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    Smile
    brand new merchant here, just signed up with SAS. Thought our big decision was to join a network, learning now all the other work involved.
    I assumed the search for affiliates was as beachcom phrased it, "if you have something we need...we'll find you."

    Planned to simply focus on program for now (currently working on banners in the dozen sizes suggested in another thread). I assume that with a good program then good affiliates will find us in time. Is this wise or should I be targeting potential affiliates and contacting them directly as is discussed in this thread?

  25. #25
    Moderator MichaelColey's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by PushPin View Post
    Ok I can see that I have throughly made everyone hate me here.
    There's a huge difference between hating you and hating what you're doing or suggesting.
    Quote Originally Posted by PushPin View Post
    Ok, well I guess I need to rethink my strategy. Can you give me advice on the ideal frequency in which to contact prospective affiliate via email? And at what point to give up?
    I think part of it is who initiated the relationship. If they've SIGNED UP for your program but just aren't promoting it yet, I think a well-designed quarterly activation campaign could produce good results. If you've solicited them with no sign of interest or response from them, I would be very careful with any more than one contact.
    Quote Originally Posted by qualityunit View Post
    I think, that most important is to get attention of your affiliate - what about to send him a box with your product to try it or just send him a cookies or anything else, what will catch his attention. When you will get attention of your affiliate, you can follow with statistic and other details.
    I totally agree with this approach. If they're a good enough match that you can justify doing the cost of doing this, it can be very effective.
    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

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