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  1. #1
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    Is Allsat Unscrupulous???
    Serious questions about Allsat's affiliate program...

    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    I've signed up a number of allsat.com sub-affiliates, some of which I know have made at least (2) sales, which is the required number that allsat says you must have to get paid.

    2 affiliates have made at least two sales (that show up as being installed and paid for) and have not been paid anything for them - the sales were made back in May and June of 2006 and now it's nearly mid-August, and still no checks.

    Furthermore, I had a customer of mine call in an order to allsat's toll-free number with my affiliate ID. When the sale didn't show up in my reports I called their affiliate support line and spoke with Jamie. She found the order and said it was tracked to the affiliate ID 1205. I did some research and found out that goes back to www.dish-network.cn (which is an internal allsat.com domain name). On 7-24-06 Jamie said she'd have the call center voice log pulled so the sale call could be reviewed to see how allsat.com got the credit, and not me (my customer said she told them three different times my affiliate code). I was told that it would be 48 hours or so and that I'd be able to hear the tape. I spoke with Ben Solberg, the owner of allsat a few days later to let him know what happened. He seemed concerned (of course) and said that he too would follow up on that recording. When I asked him if I'd get to hear the tape he assured me that would happen. Here it is now 3 weeks later. No tape recording to date.

    And finally, during all this, I ordered 5000 fliers (at a cost to me of $250) and printed my affiliate ID on all 5000 and paid $150 to have them inserted in our local daily newspaper. According to Ben himself, right now, going into fall is a great time to put out fliers. Can you believe - NOT ONE SALE OUT OF 5000 fliers (inserted into newpapers going into areas not serviced by cable)??? I find that disturbing when coupled with the fact that a legitimate sale called in by one of my customers appears to have been snaked by allsat.com - BEWARE MY FRIENDS! I'd find another DISH affiliate program even if it pays less. I'd rather have 100% of a smaller amount than to have 0% of a larger amount!

  2. #2
    Lite On The Do, Heavy On The Nuts Donuts's Avatar
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    Unscrupulous? Nope, that's not the word I'd use.

  3. #3
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    RE: Allsat being unscrupulous...
    I feel, out of professional courtesy, and due to the fact that I don't want to knock anyone, or any company that doesn't deserve knocking that I need to update my original post.

    I spoke to Allsat affiliate support today. They're going to pay the shipping to return back to them 5000 fliers I have that I've decided not to distribute. They've also agreed to refund the money I paid for the fliers.

    One of the two sub-affiliates I mentioned is due to be paid on his two sales made back in June by September 1st. So that is good news.

    As far as the 5000 fliers I put out (and the fact that I didn't get one customer) they only thing they could tell me is that it was probably because I didn't put them in areas where there was a heavy concentration of "cable" users. Even though I know it's quite common for Dish users to switch to Direct, and vice versa, as they become unhappy with thier current company. I still have a hard time believing that 5000 fliers didn't net one new customer.

    I've found another company that appears to put more thought and emphasis on making sure their affiliates get credit for their sales. Obviously that's of paramount importance to us affiliates...to get paid (duh?)

  4. #4
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    Angry I dumped them
    I'm not the biggest fish on the block by any means as far as satellite sales go - probably make not quite a sale a month (more money from adsense). I decided to give them a try a few months back. I made a sale and waited for my payment. And waited, and waited. I finally contacted them and was told I would be paid when I made a second sale - this was to prevent fraud - people buying through their own affiliate links.

    Biggest bunch of bs. They can easily find out that my site has been online for several years and I didn't just sign on to get sat tv and get the commish.

    So, I dumped them - went back to vmc. At least they paid me.
    Blessed Be,
    White Wolf

  5. #5
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    Same pond...
    I'm sorta in the same pond - not a big fish, but looking to become one. I was just gearing up to start promoting them in a bigger way offline (10K fliers out in the local money-saver weekly newspaper to start) when the affiliate coding incident where my customer that I personally coached into calling got coded to allsat internally instead of me.

    The fact that they still haven't coughed up the recording to isolate why that happened has left a negative impression on me moving forward in a bigger way. It'll be interesting to see if they ever do. If it was not thier fault, I'll make sure and post it out of fairness to them.

    The two sale thing... I can sort of see their point - but I'd pay even the one person who signed up their own account as a catalyst to get them to go out and find others... prime the pump you might say. They obviously don't see it that way.

  6. #6
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    Follow Up
    I’d like to note that we did make an exception to our terms and conditions, which state that two sales are required for your first payment, and agreed to issue the commission to you for the one sale that you referred. This commission will be issued once the charge back period has passed. I believe I made you aware of this in a phone call and an email.

    Additionally, we agreed to refund you for the fliers as well as sent you a prepaid shipping label so that you wouldn’t have to pay the shipping to return them to us.

    The 4800 fliers that you distributed went to rural areas where people don’t have cable, according to my initial conversation with you. I mentioned that most people in rural areas already have satellite. And yes, if they have something other than DISH Network, they might be interested in switching. However, since the majority of them already have satellite, the flier would be lost on them. I also shared with you who we target in some of our own advertising. We discussed the type of newspaper you advertised in not being one that the majority of our affiliates have had success in advertising in.

    The call center that we utilize did make a mistake in not crediting the sale to you. It was just that, a mistake. We do not have any call centers in house so the agents at the call centers are not employed by us directly. They have no idea which promotional code belongs to which person. The call center has stated that the agent was a new trainee and was reprimanded for the mistake. Unfortunately, humans will make mistakes. This is why after our discussion I had the sale credited to you within 24 hours. We had just begun a new policy of our third party call centers sending us recordings within 48 hours of our request when I spoke to you. It did take them three weeks to get the recording as they had some bugs to work through at their center. Currently, they are providing random recordings to us based on our requests on a daily basis so that we can monitor the recordings for quality assurance. This includes ensuring that all promo codes are properly entered by the sales agent.

    Last, I’ll address the two sales required for initial commission payment. This is stated in our affiliate terms and conditions before you are allowed to join our program. We spend advertising dollars to find new affiliates. The affiliates that we are looking for are ones that will take this business seriously. Anyone could decide to sign up for DISH Network’s service and see our ad regarding the affiliate program. They could try to make money from our program while signing up for a service that they already intended to sign up for. We cannot pay $110 in commissions when we probably spent over $100 to bring them to our website in the first place. As a way to combat that, we require two sales to show that affiliates are serious in referring customers and not just trying to discount their own purchase. After that, there is no minimum required. Other programs may not require the same policy but since we offer such a high commission without requiring that you hit a certain tier level, we do. This policy also protects our affiliates because if a customer went to the affiliate website and then signed up as an affiliate to discount their purchase, the affiliate would only earn $10 (2nd tier commission) instead of $110; however, because of our policy, the real affiliate would still earn $110.

    I wish you the best of luck with the program you are currently working with and hope that you find success.

  7. #7
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    In all fairness to Allsat...
    My hats off to Jamie for being diligent in doing her best to address my concerns. She has been very professional through all this and:

    a) I appreciate the exception to the terms in my case to pay me as I didn't become an affiliate to "sell" to myself. I've also personally recruited sub-affiliates that have made sales so I was serious about developing my Allsat affiliate business.

    b) We addressed the type of paper I put the flyers in after the fact. And the paper I chose is a very popular paper (paid subscription) and goes into mixed areas (both cable and non-cable areas). I did concentrate on areas that would be the least likely to have cable, but I know for a fact that at least 20% of the flyers went into areas that did have cable, or were at least partially covered by cable. So to have absolutely 0 calls, and no sales is very disappointing to say the least. I think you said maybe that you had 50 calls for the month on your affiliate toll-free number total (was that correct?) and that none of them came from my area.

    c) Call centers make mistakes...I agree. It's an affiliates worst nightmare not to get credit for the sale. And when I'm told that the tape would be pulled and that I'd get a chance to hear why I didn't get credit, and then that never happens, it's discouraging. Again, you did everything you could to make that happen, but it never happened - I never did hear that tape.

    d) You sent a pick-up tag for the unused box of flyers, again, a sign that you've taken appropriate business-like steps to make me happy. Thank you.

    e) Although I left a few messages for Ben to call me back regarding the recording and flyers, he never did. I'm a serious affiliate with money to spend on promoting things like this. A call from him early may have been enough to work something out so that I'd have considered staying and promoting Allsat's program. I tell you that just for your future consideration of other affiliates. If it costs you $100 to get an affiliate on board, I'd think you'd work harder to keep them (not your personally Jamie...again, you did your job well and were very professional).

    In closing, I need to have more assurance that as an affiliate, checks and balances are in place to make sure I get credit for my hard work. Thank you.

  8. #8
    Lite On The Do, Heavy On The Nuts Donuts's Avatar
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    Jamie, give me a call sometime... I'd like an update on our open issue.

  9. #9
    ABW Ambassador Ron Bechdolt's Avatar
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    I've never sold sataliltes, but from what I have heard they are not an easy sell and not a nitch market. I have done newspaper flyers and it took me a couple of years to find the right zip code area where what I was selling got responses. And it is not just the responses, it is making the sale and I had to do that in person. Takes lots of money and patience to make money that way. Need to really test the waters of your area to see what works and the bigger the town the better the test.
    Ron Bechdolt | Affiliate Program Management Consultant
    7 Days A Week Marketing

  10. #10
    ABW Founder Haiko de Poel, Jr.'s Avatar
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    Hello -

    This isn't necessarily a report on harrassment but their are some accusations/statements in this post from a former affiliate of our program that aren't all fact based. I've addressed his issues in a post, that you can review, as well as in previous phone calls and emails prior to his post. I'd like consideration in removing this entire thread because it isn't necessarily based on fact. Also, our program does not host a forum on here so we ask affiliates to contact us directly. Since this post, there are questions addressed to us on here and I don't want affiliates to ask questions that don't get addressed here because we aren't regularly monitoring forums that mention our program.

    Thank you for your consideration.

    Jamie Bennett
    Director of Affiliate Marketing
    AllSat Affiliate Program
    Jamie,

    Sure, prove that the accusations/statements are false in a post below and I'll edit any post / or this thread. If not, welcome to the world of web ink ... sh*t that just don't go away even if you don't want affiliates to ask questions on a public forum.
    Continued Success,

    Haiko
    The secret of success is constancy of purpose ~ Disraeli

  11. #11
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    re: Fact vs Non-Fact...
    Ok, let's not let this get too out of hand here folks. I've tried to be fair to both Jamie and Allsat in updating my posts as I honestly as I can. And yes Jamie, you have addressed my concerns to the best of your ability. But what was never really cleared up was how an internal allsat ID got credit for a sale of mine, when I had coached my customer to make sure they knew to mention my sales ID (which she said she mentioned 3 times). You told me that there would be a voice recording to shed light on what really happened, (Ben Solberg told me the same thing - that the voice log tape would be requested). You both indicated that I'd be able to hear that tape.

    A month later, and no tape - did that tape accidently get lost?

    And let's look at why I started to become suspicious in the first place. When I first called you about the missing sale, you indicated that it had been coded to affiliate ID 1205 (not even close to my ID of 5874) - during that first call you didn't specify that the code 1205 was an internal allsat code - this came to light on a subsequent call.

    I took it on myself to do some research on that affiliate ID. I took my ID # out of the affiliate web-string and then put in the 1205 code to see what I'd discover. What popped up was an allsat site with the a branding of www.Dish-Network.cn. So I did a who-is on that site and came up with the owner name of that domain. I then did a search on Google for that company name listed in the who-is info, and came up with the name and address of a company that's 8.9 miles (14 minutes) from your home office. I called and left a message for the girl listed in whois (on the machine) and later that day a man named Gary returned my call. I asked him if she was still selling Dish with Allsat, he said yes, and the he asked me why I asked. I simply told him I was looking for information. He said something about her having an affiliate with allsat in the past - I ended the call at that time because it was obvious that I was fishing to him.

    It was then that I called you to find out more about that ID, and you then told me it was an "internal" allsat ID. That recording sure would answer a lot of unanswered questions, wouldn't it? Maybe I'm wrong; my goal from the beginning was to just get to the bottom of this whole thing. Where's the tape?

    And finally, my questions were addressed to Allsat as soon as I realized that I didn't get credit for my sale (sale was made on 7-17; I contacted you on 7-24). I've not gotten the response one would think would be given in this situation. Ben's never returned my calls (2) to address the tape issue, or to even discuss strategies that might improve my flyer placements to improve my chance for success. (Normally I'd not expect an "owner" to make a call like that, but Ben did assure me in my first conversation with him that the tape would be obtained). My post here was to other people in this business that may or may not have had a similar experience - it was not to ask a questions from Allsat.
    Last edited by ldguy; August 24th, 2006 at 12:20 AM.

  12. #12
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    The real facts
    Your last header was Fact versus Fiction…let’s deal with the real facts here because I’m a facts kind of guy.

    The rules of this forum do not permit the use of URLs or full names of which you have done both.

    Member Identity or URL Exposing
    "Any member who posts another member's url or urls to their site(s), their real name or other personal information in BAD FAITH, shall immediately be banned."

    According to that policy you should be immediately banned…let’s see if they enforce their own policy.

    The day that we received the call recording was the same day that you left a very nasty message on my voice mail. You threatened all the things that you were going to do and basically said about every bad thing that you could think of to call our company’s integrity into question and said that you would not be doing any more sales for us. So why would anyone even consider providing a call recording to someone that does something like this? The reason I didn’t follow up with you is because your message hit me the wrong way and really disturbed me. You threatened to dispute the charge with the credit card company for the fliers before even seeing if you could get a credit. Even after your nasty message I still made sure that we didn’t only credit you but also paid to have the fliers returned which I didn’t have to do. The fact is that if you hadn’t told us off that day that you would have received the recording. I said that I would get it, I did everything I could to get it…and I did. Sorry it took so long and trust me the call center heard about it. They heard about this issue when we first learned of it, they heard about it when we requested the call recording, they heard about it when I have my weekly calls with them, they heard about it when you left me that nasty message, they heard about it yesterday when we discovered this post…I would be surprised if the person that messed up your promo code is still employed by their call center. If you really had any idea how serious we take these situations you would know.

    As for the promo code being an internal promo code. What Jamie said is 100% true in that the call center has no idea what promo code belongs to who or what. The call center says that the rep in question was new and so all we can guess is that since 1205 is such a common promo code that maybe they thought that is what the default promo code was…now I don’t have any idea if that is or is not the case. What I can say is that we do not mess around when it comes to promo codes. We have systems in place that make the promo code issue as dummy proof as possible…that is why to us this issue is just unbelievable. We actually tie the promo code query directly to our phone lines so that if the line is a dedicated line that the sales rep is prompted to not ask for the promo code and it will actually show the sales rep the dedicated promo code for that phone line. In this case the affiliate phone number is tied to a query which prompts the rep to ask for the promo code and gives them a place right there to enter it in. They cannot proceed without entering in the promo code. Now let’s look at your case suggesting that this is intentional because after all, it is promo code 1205. How did you know what the promo code was to begin with…because we volunteered to you that it was promo code 1205. That is because we have nothing to hide, if we had something to hide we would have never told you what the promo code was. Right? Now we can see that our good faith efforts have only been used to stab us in the back. You have only repeatedly tried to twist this and stab us with the information we provided you. I can only imagine how you would have twisted the recording against us. Do you still now think that we should provide you with the recording and if so…why? If you were me would you?

    Let’s talk about fliers. The fact is that you stated that you sent the fliers into places where there was no cable. This is also what you told Jamie and she clearly told you that was the problem and explained why. Now did you state in your early posts that Jamie had explained this to you and let everyone here know the error you made? It sounds logical at first that you would send fliers to people that didn’t have cable…but that worked in 1995 when they finally had satellite as an option after all of those years of having nothing to choose from. Those people have had over 10 years to get satellite and guess what…they have it. Even after we explained it to you…you still had the gall to post, “Can you believe - NOT ONE SALE OUT OF 5000 fliers (inserted into newspapers going into areas not serviced by cable)???” You post the stuff from the conversations you had with us that makes you look good and us bad. You include the part about how I told you that fall is a great time for the satellite business…anyone that has been reading these posts and selling satellite for a long time can tell you that. Year after year…going into the fall is one of the best times of year… last month was our best month ever in the 11 years I’ve been in the satellite business and I bet we will top it again before the end of the year. We send out millions of these same fliers every month…we wouldn’t continue to send out millions month after month if they didn’t work. Obviously, the lack of results was not the flier but where the flier went that made the difference.

    Quick note on the statement you made about it costing over $100 to sign up an affiliate…that is not was Jamie was saying…she was saying that we cannot pay over $100 to sign up a customer and then another $110 to that customer to take credit for their own sale. Our two sale policy further protects our affiliates and I see that instead of anyone recognizing how good this policy is to affiliates that work with us that so many are just anxious to look for a reason to support one side of this thread.

    I understand why you started this threat and why you were suspicious. I hope that we can put the flier issue aside and hope that you now realize that you just made a mistake and mistakes happen. Those fliers weren’t going to produce sales where you sent them. The same thing is what happened with this promo code, a mistake, the only thing more I can do is make sure that the person that made this error no longer works for the call center. If that is what you want then just say the word. In defense of this person, if this person still works for the call center I’m quite confident that they will never make this mistake again. AllSat is not unscrupulous as the heading with the question mark is suggesting. I have met many people in this business over the last 11 years and I have yet to find a one that runs their business as honest and with as much integrity as we do and that same culture is passed along to everyone that works for me. If we get a bad fish they don’t last. Lastly, you can see from the post replies that no one has had similar experiences working with us because we are not unscrupulous.

    Lastly, you state that your posts here were to find out if other affiliates have had similar experiences. I see no such question in your original post or any posts since but rather at header that makes a suggestion that AllSat is unscrupulous. Your post does not ask for affiliates experiences with AllSat, but is full of a bunch of slandering a business which did everything they could to make a call center reps mistake right. When we continue to clarify and respond to your accusations you now admit that you don’t want answers, you want us to stay out of it and not respond to your accusations….you would rather spend your time continuing to ignore the facts, slamming a company that has gone out of their way to make things right, and violating this forum’s policies multiple times. I think your intentions are pretty clear to all.

  13. #13
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    Smile My apologies to Allsat...
    My choice of words in my first post was made because I truly wondered if your company was trying to hide something for never allowing me to hear that tape. Maybe a poor choice of words, and I'd be happy to have them "stricken" from this forum if the moderator would replace them with, "Allsat fails to produce the tape".

    You had 3 weeks prior to my message and post to show me that there was some legitimate concern, by Allsat, that this happened. I was upset at your company for two obvious reasons. 1. My first sale didn't get credited to me, even though my client said they used my code three times 2. That when this was brought to to Allsat's attention, I was told that there we be prompt follow-up on the matter. I was told by Jamie on 7/24 that the tape would be requested (and obtainted usually in your hands in 48 hours or so). I also spoke personally with you right after speaking with Jamie about this issue. When I asked you if I could hear the tape, you said you didn't see any reason why I shouldn't be able to hear the recording. (For the record - you were very polite and seemed very sincere to me - I honestly thought I'd get to hear that tape in a few days).

    Now, here's where it starts to break down. Right around the same time this is all happening I had arranged to put 5000 flyers out (and yes I targeted them at primarily non-cable areas due to my lack of experience in marketing satellite - it was not, however, 100% non-cable). I was hopeful I'd get at least a few sales from 5000 flyers and was concerned that I maybe I just sank $400 of my money down a deep hole with this tape thing looming in the back of my mind. I still think that if you put fliers into 100% satellite areas there are still SOME people who'll jump the fence from Dish to Direct and vice versa. Is there any truth to that idea?

    So, I put the fliers out and waited. No sales post, and no call from Allsat re: the tape. What you heard in my voice on August 15th Ben was frustration; ...frustration that I'd still not heard that tape after 3+ weeks when I was orignally told it'd be 48 hours. Again, Jamie did tell me that you were having trouble getting that tape, and that you were working on it, but up the 15th. of August when I left you the message about the fliers I still hadn't heard it. So if you had the recording in your possession, you hadn't thought to call and share it with me prior to the 15th, that was not in my control.

    As far as the promo code goes, 1205, I agree that Jamie sharing that code with me shows her true concern to get this straightened out. And I've always been clear that she's been very good to try and help me on this. I'm not suggesting that it was intentional to defraud me of a sale. I'm suggesting though that something happened on that day that cost me a sale, and only you REALLY know. I'm still in the dark.

    As far as the call center rep, I don't know. I've made plenty of mistakes in my life and would'nt want them to lose thier job necessarily. But if they DID put 1205 in instead of my code, and the tape clearly shows my client giving them my code 3 times, then yes, they should find work in another field because their carelessness can produce problems like this. Was the call center employee brand new? Or experienced? That would be interesting to know.

    I'm sorry that all this has happened for both our sakes. I'd love to put this behind me and chalk it up for experience. Yes, I'd still like to hear the tape. Tell me...on the tape...is it blatantly obvious my client gave my code? Or does that that tape prove ME to be WRONG and you're just sparing me the public embarressment? I'm all for getting the truth into the open. And from our conversation back in July, it seemed like you were too. How about that tape Ben? If I'm wrong, I'll publically apologize to you and Allsat - I don't have a problem with that.

  14. #14
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    Allsat works to correct a perceived wrong...
    Allsat, in a goodwill gesture to address my original concern with them, recently refunded back to me the money I paid for some flyers I decided not to put out. They didn't have to do that if they didn't want to try to make things right with me. I feel it necessary (and fair to them) to post this. That doesn't change the fact that I feel my concerns weren't addressed in a timely manner. They are however, in my opinion, trying to correct a perceived wrong.

    Sometimes things just don't work out the way you think they will. This whole issue was just that. I learned some things as a result of this, and maybe they did too. One thing for sure is this. As a group of individuals, we who make a living off of promoting other peoples products and services for credit appreciate anything or any method that minimizes the chances of credit not being appropriately given for a job performed.

    So maybe this whole thing will cause Allsat (and maybe other affiliate managers) to review some of their policies with thier call centers so that in the future the chances of something like this happening will be minimized even more than now. That is all we affiliates ask for - simply pay us for the business we deliver, as promised - and when there's a mistake, make a concerted effort to correct the problem (and it helps to include the affiliate in that process to show good faith).

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