Results 1 to 9 of 9
  1. #1
    Affiliate Manager nish's Avatar
    Join Date
    July 6th, 2005
    Posts
    762
    Question Network or Indie?
    As an affiliate, which one would you prefer - Network or Indie?

    I'm sure this has been discussed several times before. I found this one poll: http://forum.abestweb.com/showthread...=network+indie but it was a while back (in 2003). Things have changed quite a bit since then. So a fresh opinion would be nice.

    cheers!
    -Nish

  2. #2
    ABW Ambassador Ron Bechdolt's Avatar
    Join Date
    January 18th, 2005
    Location
    Affiliateville, USA
    Posts
    7,927
    You forgot to create the actual poll.

    Frankly, there is not much new. Both offer advantages and disadvantages. It takes time to find which ones work best for you. I have over a dozen independents. Most don't make me much, but I keep them as they are a steady source of income.
    Ron Bechdolt | Affiliate Program Management Consultant
    7 Days A Week Marketing

  3. #3
    Affiliate Manager nish's Avatar
    Join Date
    July 6th, 2005
    Posts
    762
    Quote Originally Posted by 7-days
    You forgot to create the actual poll.
    Somehow I just couldn't find the option to create a poll.

    Quote Originally Posted by 7-days
    Frankly, there is not much new. Both offer advantages and disadvantages. It takes time to find which ones work best for you. I have over a dozen independents. Most don't make me much, but I keep them as they are a steady source of income.
    Yup, possibly nothing has changed. But I was reading on ABW about how LinkShare's reputation has gone down the hill and ShareASale's up. Maybe that affects how affiliates now look at merchants.. to go with the ones that are in the Network or the ones that stay Independent?

    cheers!
    -nish

  4. #4
    ABW Ambassador Ron Bechdolt's Avatar
    Join Date
    January 18th, 2005
    Location
    Affiliateville, USA
    Posts
    7,927
    The posts here will guide you but nothing is as good as your own experience with each network and your independents. I've developed some special relationships with both network merchants as well as affiliates. Each has cut me some special deals or increased commissions. The number one thing I can suggest is start a conversation with the owner of the independents or the affiliate managers of the merchants. You'd be amazed. My other advice is never put your eggs in one basket. Deal with all networks and as many indepdents as you can.
    Ron Bechdolt | Affiliate Program Management Consultant
    7 Days A Week Marketing

  5. #5
    Affiliate Manager nish's Avatar
    Join Date
    July 6th, 2005
    Posts
    762
    Quote Originally Posted by 7-days
    My other advice is never put your eggs in one basket. Deal with all networks and as many indepdents as you can.
    So very true.

    I want to know the affiliate's point of view, but I'm a to-be merchant planning on an affiliate program and debating whether to go Network (SAS) or indie.

    So coming back to your advice 'never put your eggs in one basket'.. Its true both for affiliates and merchants. I understand that for a merchant, a successful affiliate program could result in about 20-25% of total sales. Now if a merchant is going with a network and that network plays foul in future or its reputation goes down the hill, the merchant is hit pretty bad for no real fault of his own. (We have seen this in recent times with LinkShare and I guess no network is totally immune).

    With this view in mind, doesn't it makes sense to go indie? Ofcourse, if going indie.. the merchant should have a very professionally planned program with all the bells n whistles.. data feeds, no parasites, very competitive commision, tracking n reporting, long cookie life, banners and content, signup bonuses etc. and the most important - honesty.

    The other option is to go SAS aswell as indie (both together). Affiliate can choose which one they want to join. The one problem I can think over here is the double payment problem (visitor coming to a merchant from two different affiliates - one from SAS and one from indie. who should get the commis?)

    Thanks a lot for your feedback.

    cheers!
    -nishith

  6. #6
    Newbie
    Join Date
    January 18th, 2005
    Location
    Chicago
    Posts
    21
    Hi all,
    This could be a benefit OR a hazard depending on context, but Indie AMs proximity to their own business, and its products, could be of value to affiliates. My feeling is that an indie AM is closer to the product, and a network AM is closer to the business.

    Example:
    I am the AM for a music gear indie. Aside from my role as AM, I am also a musician. I attend yearly industry conferences to keep me up to speed on our product lines. If my merchant had outsourced its program to a network, the AM responsible for this merchant may not have a clue about the products (microphones, pc recording devices, guitars).

    In this case, an affiliate can use me as a resource to develop their feed-driven affiliate site. I can tell them what is hot now, what will be hot tomorrow, and how to merchandise their sites accordingly... Could a network AM do this? Sure, they could forward an email or ask the merchant in question, but I think direct, real-time communication is paramount.

    The negative side of this: my merchant could have hired a musician to run this affiliate program-- one that knew nothing about affiliate marketing or the affiliate community. The pitfalls here are obvious. This really could be a benefit or a hazard...

    What do you think? Is an informed AM important to you?

    -mike-
    zZounds.com AM

  7. #7
    Moderator MichaelColey's Avatar
    Join Date
    January 18th, 2005
    Location
    Mansfield, TX
    Posts
    16,232
    That's a tough call. Of course the best solution would be an AM that understands both your market and marketing. If I had to choose, I would slightly favor an AM that only understood marketing.
    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

  8. #8
    More Cheesier Than Ever Cheesehead's Avatar
    Join Date
    January 18th, 2005
    Location
    Land of The NFL Champs!
    Posts
    2,942
    I prefer a program that is clean that has a supportive AM - I don't care if it is network or indie. If I am going to promote bigtime, I will make enough for min payment.

    For small promotions or test promotions, I prefer a network with consolidated payment.
    This World is Not My Home
    We're gonna go inside, we're gonna go outside, inside and outside. . . And then we're gonna go go go and we're not gonna stop til we get across that goalline! Quotes from the movie Rudy, 1993

  9. #9
    .
    Join Date
    January 18th, 2005
    Posts
    2,973
    One concern, of course, is the risk that a network will go out of business, or may choose not to continue the relationship on acceptable terms. If so, all existing links through that network will no longer work. As an affiliate, I also worry about the loss of "network" clicks through various privacy/security software settings (thus far, few links for direct programs are being blocked, though I personally can't understand why a CJ or LinkShare link is any more objectionable than an Amazon or AllPosters link).

    I've been through "the transition" when one merchant elected to switch from one network to another, and it was ugly, ugly, ugly. I've also worked with merchants who offered one or more network programs as well as a direct program -- in some cases, it makes more sense for me to use the network (if I know I won't drive very many sales, and I can get consolidated payments), while in other cases it makes more sense to go direct.

    Bottom line: I would urge merchants to offer both direct AND network affiliate programs, and consider using multiple networks to best serve key affiliates. Some affiliates will only use datafeeds from one or two networks, and won't do direct datafeeds. Some affiliates may have issues with one or more networks (I have some very, very, very strong personal feelings about one of the big networks, and refused to do any business through them for several years -- but recently I have gone ahead and resumed participation because I knew I could drive a LOT of sales to one of their merchants from one of my sites).

  10. Newsletter Signup

+ Reply to Thread

Similar Threads

  1. CJ vs indie programs
    By wrangler25x in forum Commission Junction - CJ
    Replies: 11
    Last Post: August 30th, 2006, 11:18 AM
  2. What would you say.... to an indie?
    By Geno Prussakov in forum Midnight Cafe'
    Replies: 24
    Last Post: October 30th, 2005, 05:13 PM
  3. Being recruited for an indie by a network merchant
    By webworker in forum Midnight Cafe'
    Replies: 21
    Last Post: June 3rd, 2005, 03:07 PM
  4. NetQuote Indie any?
    By likemynick in forum In-House Programs
    Replies: 0
    Last Post: December 6th, 2004, 10:58 AM

Posting Permissions

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