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  1. #1
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    Does anyone know if there was any real decisions made at the Nov 7th mtg? Or have any information about the success/failure?

  2. #2
    Super Sh!t Stirrer SSanf's Avatar
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    Doesn't make any difference. They might have worked it all out in the closed door meeting on Nov 7th for all we know. But, one thing you can be sure of is that they are going to suck every last cent they can out of the Christmas shoppers before they make ANY changes.

    The Wolf Credo: Respect the elders. Teach the young. Cooperate with the pack. Play when you can. Hunt when you must. Rest in between. Share your affections. Voice your feelings. Leave your mark.

  3. #3
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    Mums the word from the OLD BOYS CLUB network that attended the meeting.

    Of all the ABW members in attendance, only Elisabeth would convey real information to us.

  4. #4
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    Nothing was decided at the private meeting, but progress was made in terms of what issues specifically needed to be addressed. As I understand it the talks are still going on via phone meetings every week with the four solution providers.


    For those interested I have summit minutes posted:


    http://www.afftrack.com/summit/


    Sorry for the delay but I have been traveling and catching up on work. As time allows I will link-up supporting documents IF and only IF I have permission to do so from the speaker. (This may not be granted.)


    Please remember that these are meeting minutes and not meeting transcripts, thus you will not have quotes but a general record of what was discussed (as fast as Jeff could type.). Please don't re-copy and distribute as I want to make sure the record stands clear and no one is accused of altering, etc.

    There are no minutes for the short Q&A period or private meeting.

    regards,

    Wayne

    Wayne Porter
    V.P. Product Development
    AffTrack LLC.
    http://www.afftrack.com
    http://www.revtrends.com
    Advanced & Automated Data Analysis for Performance Marketers.

  5. #5
    Defender of Truth, Justice and the Affiliate Way
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    Wayne,

    Thanks for posting those. Even though no decisions have been made yet, I'm sure many will appreciate being able to see a more concretely what transpired.

    Keep Your Hands Off My Cookies

  6. #6
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    For all who haven't figured it out yet, here are the results of the Nov 7th meeting that were by the way, posted before the meeting ever took place.


    Browser plug-ins will be allowed but forced to adhear to some standards. Want to know what these standards are? See this
    thread.

  7. #7
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    happypoon...

    I sincerely hope you are right about the fact that the LS addendum will be the one adopted by the network providers. Unfortunately, I am afraid you will be even more disappointed by what will eventually be adopted by at least three of the providers (and, probably endorsed; although de minimis by the forth).

    Remember what you have been reading from the other providers. They are all talking about a supposed "Code of Conduct".

    Hmmm..... One could easily suppose that the 10 commandments might be a code of conduct as well, but how many of us break at least one or two with regularity (I know that my neighbor's wife is a doll).

    Anyway, before you start slapping that addendum around, you might want to take another gander at it.

    Obstinatedon

    You must not lose faith in humanity. Humanity is an ocean; if a few drops of the ocean are dirty, the ocean does not become dirty.

    Mahatma Gandhi

  8. #8
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    Don,

    I've looked at it over and over. I stated very clearly from the get go that I opposed browswer plug-ins and interference with users while they were on my site.

    I have problems with BHO's and standards supporting them because they allow BHO providers to rape and profit from the work of and at the expense of "their competitors". PERIOD!

    If the parasites are so powerful, why do they have to use other peoples web sites to make their money?

    They have abused the system so much where they have been able to negotiate higher commission rates from merchants and then they offer rebates to thier users which makes a normal affiliates ability to compete much more difficult.

    How many ways does the normal affiliate get slapped around here Don? Is the way of the future......
    Offer rebates and a bho application or get knocked down and thrown to the side and called "obselete and ineffective" from a web marketing perspective. This seems very ironic when they use our sites and work to make their money.

    Any standard supporting BHO's will in essence formally state that ethical marketing on a web site is obselete and affiliates can expect profits to continually slide away.

    Ethcial affiliates will be forced to to enter the BHO arena, and integrate the components necessary to offer and track rebates to their users to be able to have a chance to compete if this happens. Or, just say the heck with rebates and start doing as has been openly supported (direct overwritting of links).

    Now I ask you to look again and tell me who's getting slapped around here Don?

  9. #9
    2005 Linkshare Golden Link Award Winner  ecomcity's Avatar
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    With the Christmas Shopping season in full swing the real effects of parasitic BHO plug-ins will shout loud and clear in the next 30 day stats. If my traffic increases hold true and I mix both merchants, who support parasites with those who don't, then I will have a complete impact picture. I added in some new merchants not on my "BHO watch list" and increased links to those who are..

    If the parasitic Grinches work their magic and destroy my Christmas shopping traffic then I'll know the networks are tossing us to the winds of war.

    WebMaster Mike

  10. #10
    Full Member styleforfree's Avatar
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    The Linkshare addendum thread's closed, but I would like to say THANK YOU to Steve Messer for taking the high road and drawing up such an addendum to help protect us working class non-parasite affiliates. My (Linkshare) stats definitely show the difference -- now to see if the others will follow suit.

    With my best,

    Liz
    http://Styleforfree.com

  11. #11
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    Hello.

    I will here summarize what I told the group at the Nov. 7th meeting regarding my vision of the future of affiliate networks:

    First, a case study using BizRate.com as an example since I know it intimately :-), but it could apply very well to Overture or Google's CPC ad buys.

    - Merchant X is paying an affiliate % on bizrate.
    - Parasites come in.
    - Merchant sees drop in sales coming from bizrate.
    - Bizrate sees drop in revenue coming from merchant.
    - Bizrate lowers merchant in its listing.
    - Traffic volume going to merchant drops.
    - Merchant sees drop in sales across the board, and an even higher drop in bizrate sales.
    - Merchant calls bizrate and asks what's happening.
    - Bizrate explains the parasite problem and tells merchant to switch to CPC.
    - Merchant switches to CPC.
    - Merchant's position on bizrate rises.
    - Traffic volume going to merchant rises, as do sales across the board
    - Merchant figures out that he's paying double! Once for bizrate CPC, and once for parasite affiliate.
    - Merchant drops affiliate program.

    The End.

    This has happened already, and will happen more and more. So what's the future like? Well, as more merchants drop from the affiliate programs, the affiliate networks will lose sales and fold.
    However, IF an affiliate network takes a strong stance against parasites and becomes a TRUSTED INTERMEDIARY, then so many merchants and affiliates will flood to its network that it will instantly crush its competitors and become the de facto standard.

    We at BizRate.com will be happy to fully support a trusted affiliate network.

    That's the way I see it.

    Henri Asseily
    CTO & co-founder
    BizRate.com

  12. #12
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    Hello Henri...

    Very astute. Somewhat flawed as it pertains to merchants leaving the networks currently, as that has not proven to be the fact, but you are absolutely right about the fact that the network provider who takes the stand - regardless of what the remaining providers decide to do - will indeed end up as the survivor.

    As to your concept of CPC coming to the fore again, I am afraid that is somewhat wishful thinking on your part. A large percentage of us remember the nasty ramifications of what happened the last time CPC was king.

    Obstinatedon

    You must not lose faith in humanity. Humanity is an ocean; if a few drops of the ocean are dirty, the ocean does not become dirty.

    Mahatma Gandhi

  13. #13
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    Don,

    Whether or not to pay CPC is predicated on the brand pitching it and the model.

    For example I would have no problem paying CPC to BizRate (once I had a complete analysis) but I would never pay it to incentive sites.

    -wayne

    Wayne Porter
    V.P. Product Development
    AffTrack LLC.
    http://www.afftrack.com
    http://www.revtrends.com
    Advanced & Automated Data Analysis for Performance Marketers.

  14. #14
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    Don:

    As Wayne said, it's all about the relationship between the merchant and the standalone link originator.
    If there is trust, there is CPC.

    Believe me, many merchants on BizRate are switching from affiliate to CPC due to problems with the affiliate systems (bad tracking and parasites, difficulties in customizing aff %ages, etc...)

    When merchants don't attribute the sale to BizRate, BizRate will not value them as much. However, since merchants value BizRate traffic once they figure out that it does a lot more than they thought it did, they end up having to make a choice.

    Ultimately, a parasite destroys the ecosystem that it's leeching off of, and in the process destroys itself.

    H.

  15. #15
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    Yes Wayne, I know we have learned our lessons of the past, and the BizRate model is certainly one that works, according to the merchants I have spoken with who utilize their services.

    Factually however, the CPC model is only part of a hybrid these days, and IMHO - that is where it belongs for the most part.

    Obstinatedon

    You must not lose faith in humanity. Humanity is an ocean; if a few drops of the ocean are dirty, the ocean does not become dirty.

    Mahatma Gandhi

  16. #16
    ABW Founder Haiko de Poel, Jr.'s Avatar
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    I can easily see CPC making a big comeback!

    Look at the CURRENT CPC buys on Overture, Dealtime, Bizrate etc, it's only going to grow as the education of ParasiteWare(TM), to the AMs, does.

    Haiko


    The secret of success is constancy of purpose. ~ Disraeli


  17. #17
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    quote:
    Factually however, the CPC model is only part of a hybrid these days, and IMHO - that is where it belongs for the most part.


    It is useful as a hybrid component. I do see people doing categorical analysis and backing that analysis into CPC. Many of our clients do this.


    Haiko said

    quote:
    I can easily see CPC making a big comeback!

    Look at the CURRENT CPC buys on Overture, Dealtime, Bizrate etc, it's only going to grow as the education of ParasiteWare(TM), to the AMs, does.



    I see CPC as a performance mechanism that has always been there and continues to grow. Overture is pure performance media placement.

    Haiko I don't see CPC being the dominant form of payment for some sites, especially for smaller niche sites.

    -wayne

    Wayne Porter
    V.P. Product Development
    AffTrack LLC.
    http://www.afftrack.com
    http://www.revtrends.com
    Advanced & Automated Data Analysis for Performance Marketers.

  18. #18
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    Henri...

    You said:

    quote:
    Ultimately, a parasite destroys the ecosystem that it's leeching off of, and in the process destroys itself.


    Wiser words have not been spoken on this issue; however, the unfortunate thing about the parasitic community (and, believe me - they are a community, competitive or not) is the fact that they should not be called parasites at all. They are indeed cancerous - and much of our industry is already infected. Factually, we are infected by a seemingly benign host however - the consumer we all crave for sustanance.

    Unlike myofibroma, these cancerous beings can kill the industry completely - and pal, that means BizRate and your touted CPC model as well.

    I think a single network, and yes - it will be LinkShare - will step up to the plate as our oncologist in order to cut these cancers out. Unlike in the real world, when this happens LinkShare too will be scarred by the fallout.

    Just my opinion...

    Obstinatedon

    You must not lose faith in humanity. Humanity is an ocean; if a few drops of the ocean are dirty, the ocean does not become dirty.

    Mahatma Gandhi

  19. #19
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    In terms of client side applications the real danger for networks is in "concentration risk". This is a very real and tangible threat IMHO- more a threat to networks then the model itself.

    Don you are under the assumption that affiliates must have networks to survive and the model must have networks to survive. I will agree that networks streamline the process and help the industry grow while keeping bad merchants in check, but they are not mandatory for revenue sharing to work.



    -wayne

    Wayne Porter
    V.P. Product Development
    AffTrack LLC.
    http://www.afftrack.com
    http://www.revtrends.com
    Advanced & Automated Data Analysis for Performance Marketers.

  20. #20
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    Wayne....

    You know that I know that many of the best deals being done today are outside the realm of the networks. That does not disipate the billions of dollars being generated through the networks today. And unlike Henri, who is obviously seeing something with the merchants that has escaped me, more and more of the larger companies are joining the throng - not leaving it (them).

    Who the hell wants to just survive Wayne. Hell, we all want to prosper so that we too can shoot both a hole-in-one and a double-eagle during the same round at one of the finest country clubs in Atlanta. Tiger and Jane in tow or not.

    Obstinatedon

    You must not lose faith in humanity. Humanity is an ocean; if a few drops of the ocean are dirty, the ocean does not become dirty.

    Mahatma Gandhi

  21. #21
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    Don said

    quote:
    You know that I know that many of the best deals being done today are outside the realm of the networks. That does not disipate the billions of dollars being generated through the networks today.


    I know what you know and you know what I know and we both know what is going on. Networks are major players in terms of volume. Agree with that 100%. Fragmentation is not an issue at this point.

    quote:
    And unlike Henri, who is obviously seeing something with the merchants that has escaped me, more and more of the larger companies are joining the throng - not leaving it (them).


    Agreed.

    quote:
    Who the hell wants to just survive Wayne. Hell, we all want to prosper so that we too can shoot both a hole-in-one and a double-eagle during the same round at one of the finest country clubs in Atlanta. Tiger and Jane in tow or not.


    Bah. That is child's play. Once me and the guys from the Motley Crue band shot three consecutive hole in ones...did I mention there was a windmill on hole #4? Never did figure that out... [img]/infopop/emoticons/icon_smile.gif[/img]

    -wayne

    Wayne Porter
    V.P. Product Development
    AffTrack LLC.
    http://www.afftrack.com
    http://www.revtrends.com
    Advanced & Automated Data Analysis for Performance Marketers.

  22. #22
    2005 Linkshare Golden Link Award Winner  ecomcity's Avatar
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    Obstinatedon must be trolling for some imput from Webmaster Mike. So off the top of my head I'll throw in these observations to this learned group.

    The networks primary fuctions involve recruitment -trusted reporting - feeding coded links to affiliate pages and cutting checks on a timely basis.

    Wayne's viewpoint often doesn't consider the potential and group power of the general affiliate pool to drive sales. He works with Indies, incent sites and Superaffiliates who aren't concerned with recruitment as the #1 hurdle to a successful affiliate program.

    BizRate is my idea of a legit SuperAffiliate who relys on leveraging comparision price shoppers -end-user ratings -product side by side comparisions with direct links to their shoppers choice. Well beyond the capabilities or a normal affiliate site owner. I'm not sure where their reliance on CPC, to overcome parasitic BHO interlopers from feeding off their listings, comes from. They seem to compete with Overture for CPC keywords and throw in a hybred mix of merchants who also probably pay a base commission. It sure isn't perfected as you type in "suspenders" and get 12 pages of results all of which except 2 show belts. Of those one only sells 1 solitary suspender for 12.00. Type in suspenders in any major SE or Portal and you'll see Holdup Suspenders. Me and my client were approached years ago by BizRate but they wouldn't create a sub-category for suspenders under men's accessories to make it even worthwhile.

    His presentation summary does get across one major point to me. CPC does have a place in affiliate marketing as a way to reward affiliates for leakage -poor reporting -parasites -800# orders and 3rd party leasing options by paying for impression/clicks along side sales commissions. IBM does this at BeFree as a normal course of business for all affiliates. I launch seasonal Indy programs, who combine click revenue with commissions, with the restriction being the affiliate can't be paid on click revenue an amount that exceeds the gross sales volume. All of us at ABW are sick and tired of making nothing for generating 500+ clicks to a merchant who shows ZERO SALES. The networks need to make merchants pay a click through bonus to active affiliates upon reaching a plateau without sales, just like the portals do with hybred advertising deals.

    Don is probably right that LS can be the survivor of the Parasite BHO affiliate application wars. They'd have to make the bold move to become the first "product only" merchant network to do this, as that is the only way to keep out the "incent" merchant posers. Then affiliates and Superaffiliates will flock to them for showcasing parasite free real merchants. Only the legal suits brought by the money bag merchants will curtail traffic hijackers and point of sale interlopers from their domains. The rest is just being half pregnant as the baby grows. Consolidate payments at LS and they will dominate with merchants who will be forced to convert to recruit.

    WebMaster Mike

  23. #23
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    quote:
    Wayne's viewpoint often doesn't consider the potential and group power of the general affiliate pool to drive sales. He works with Indies, incent sites and Superaffiliates who aren't concerned with recruitment as the #1 hurdle to a successful affiliate program.


    What??? Mike, while our client base is centralized around "super affiliates" we work with a LOT of mid-tier players. Those who make 2 to 10k a month in commissions and we serve them via our RevTrends product.

    I am used to working with productive affiliates who have a variety of businesses models and sizes. I really don't care about non-productive affiliates because frankly they produce nothing so they have little to no value.

    Again it boils down to concentration risk- an exclusive group of super affiliates would be BAD for performance marketing in general. Merchants need a distributed base. My primary concern is the what lies in ahead for the mid-tier affiliate...and that is something I am currently researching.

    best,
    Wayne

    Wayne Porter
    V.P. Product Development
    AffTrack LLC.
    http://www.afftrack.com
    http://www.revtrends.com
    Advanced & Automated Data Analysis for Performance Marketers.

  24. #24
    ABW Founder Haiko de Poel, Jr.'s Avatar
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    quote:
    I see CPC as a performance mechanism that has always been there and continues to grow.


    Indeed! But,new opportunities are emerging because of this issue.

    quote:
    Overture is pure performance media placement.


    Yes, Not as [/b]"PURE"[/b] (numbers on clicks are waaaaaaay off!) as many would think but yes.

    quote:
    Haiko I don't see CPC being the dominant form of payment for some sites


    Dominant, in joe blow marketing .... no! In super affiliate marketing ... YES! Why would I pay a slotting fee when I can get a CPC deal and a CPA?!?!?!? LOL!

    Joe or Jane Blow Affiliate will always be the victim, we've seen that and worse .... experienced it (hello Parasites!).

    quote:
    especially for smaller niche sites.


    In all actuality, I see niche sites actually smartening up and commanding the share of the earnings that they deserve. IMHO!

    Haiko


    The secret of success is constancy of purpose. ~ Disraeli


  25. #25
    ABW Founder Haiko de Poel, Jr.'s Avatar
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    quote:
    I think a single network, and yes - it will be LinkShare - will step up to the plate as our oncologist in order to cut these cancers out.


    LS, is the only one, to date to do it and to make it contractual, so yes!

    Haiko


    The secret of success is constancy of purpose. ~ Disraeli


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