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  1. #1
    Affiliate Manager MINDsprinter's Avatar
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    Affiliate Communication Timeline - How do you talk with your affiliates?
    I've been running through some threads, thinking about how to jumpstart my affiliate program. For the AM's out there:

    How do you communicate with affiliates? What is your process? What is in your welcome email? Do you send them a follow up email? How long do you wait? What's in that email?

    After affiliates are in your program, do you just send monthly newsletters? Or something else?

    On the affiliate side, what do you webmasters like to see in communications from merchants.

    Hopefully I'm not digging for anyone's deep marketing secrets here, but I'd love to hear what routines people follow regarding affiliate communication.

    Thanks!

    --Jason

  2. #2
    AM Navigator Geno Prussakov's Avatar
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    Many of these questions are addressed in Andy's seminars. You may want to check with him on the next one...

    I communicate with my affiliates by all means available to humankind: face-to-face, phone, e-mail, IM, PM, even fax (to prospective affiliates mostly)...

    Welcoming e-mails can be extremely powerful in getting those that have joined active (read: to put up those links/feeds/coupons). There also have to be regular newsletters, newsletters with special bonuses for better-performing and for under-performing affiliates, newsletters with promos for all, etc, etc, etc...

    Geno

  3. #3
    Affiliate Manager MINDsprinter's Avatar
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    Yeah...I've been thinking about those seminars...


    Thanks Geno!

  4. #4
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    I do the same Geno. All of the above.

    All of my affiliates like a call every once in a while, and honestly they are not used to it. DOesn't hurt

  5. #5
    Affiliate Manager MINDsprinter's Avatar
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    jpdiaz01: Do you call everyone? Each of your affiliates? Or just those that are active? Or those that perform well?

  6. #6
    affiliate emeritus missdonna's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MINDsprinter
    On the affiliate side, what do you webmasters like to see in communications from merchants.
    Please don't overdo it. We all have a lot of merchants, and after receiving a few "just for keeping in touch" messages from any of them I just toss almost everything else in the trash. Keep it simple, keep it friendly, and keep it important.

    But when I ask you a question, drop everything and answer it. And really read and understand it, don't just give a canned answer. There's nothing quite as annoying as asking a carefully thought-out question and eventually getting an answer that shows the person didn't even try to understand the question.
    Affiliate Marketing - The hardest easy money I ever made.

  7. #7
    Affiliate Manager
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    As a CPA Affiliate Manager you are only as good as your pubs. Really.

    So I call everyone. This helps you build personal rapport as well. It's better to deal with friends than to do business with strangers.

    Because before you know it you will be labeled as "just another affiliate manager". Personal Rapport out the window.

    I have affiliates that have not run one deal from my end and I still speak to them on a weekly/bi-weekly basis, so if the right offer comes along they will absolutely run it. No questions asked!

  8. #8
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    Talking
    I'm with JP on this one, call them as often as you feel comfortable doing. You'll learn with each one what that comfort level is over time. I have guys that don't want anything but an email, and some that need daily chats. Either way, you'll gain their trust and they'll run your deals...

  9. #9
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    I'm making money everyday with more than 400 affiliate programs. I've many non active programs. Imagine each of the AMs calling me only once a year to wish me whatever. It's several calls a day. I've two phone lines just for my own affiliate business and I'm obliged to use answering machines. I need to work, I've no time to chat.

  10. #10
    Prince of Content Vinny O'Hare's Avatar
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    A lot of newbie affiliates refuse to communicate by phone with the AM and that is a shame as that is the best place to get a commision bump

    I use to hate being contatcted by phone but now I find myself more on skype or my cell phone with my working groups of AM's but each affiliate is different as is their working hours.
    Vinny O'Hare - OPM - Contact Info email: vinny at teamloxly.com ~ 702-582-6742 Twitter

  11. #11
    Affiliate Manager
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    Quote Originally Posted by nyfalcon
    .... but each affiliate is different as is their working hours.

    Couldn't agree more!

    That's when you know you are doing a good job as an Affiliate Manager! You know what makes everyone of your affiliates tick.

    E-mail, call, AIM, whatever is best for them and their comfort level!

  12. #12
    CPA Network Rep erickb2006's Avatar
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    All of these tips are great - seems like the human element is often the one that gets missed the most.
    Granted, some affiliates do NOT want to be called; however, it seems that most PREFER receiving a phone call instead of an AIM or email.
    -Erick

  13. #13
    2005 Linkshare Golden Link Award Winner  ecomcity's Avatar
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    Best communication is on a Yellow sticky note attached to their commission check...
    Webmaster's... Mike and Charlie

    "What have you done today to put real value into a referral click...from a shoppers viewpoint!"

  14. #14
    What's the word? Rhia7's Avatar
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  15. #15
    CPA Network Rep erickb2006's Avatar
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    LOL great point! And i would add - attached to a ON-TIME commission check
    -Erick

  16. #16
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    I never bother affiliates with cold calling. I never liked it as an affiliate so I won't do that to any affiliate of mine unless it is very important. I think the last time I called an affiliate out of the blue was because their check was returned by the post office so I needed the correct mailing address so I could pay him.

    I put my contact info in my welcome email including my phone number. If affiliates want to take time out of their schedule to talk to me they can call me or email me to tell me to call them

  17. #17
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    Well if I were an affiliate I would appreciate a call if I were being updated on what is working best. I mean who better to tell you how to make more money. Even if an AM is just calling you to try and raise theyre revenue you have to realize that for that to happen your commisions will rise with it!!!
    I mean think about it, its a 2 way street you both make money.

  18. #18
    15 years and counting
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    Quote Originally Posted by ecomcity
    Best communication is on a Yellow sticky note attached to their commission check...
    I've still a few merchants sending me a personal letter every month with the check, and yep, sometimes it's just a yellow sticky note, no pb.

    It's nice to be able to communicate on the phone with the AM in case of emergency like Chet-B said. Affiliate marketing is taking too much of my time these days. I'm just back from an Affiliate Convention, 3 days out of the office and I know I'm running late. I'll be mad to get cold calls from marketers.

  19. #19
    What's the word? Rhia7's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chet_B
    I never bother affiliates with cold calling. I never liked it as an affiliate so I won't do that to any affiliate of mine unless it is very important. I think the last time I called an affiliate out of the blue was because their check was returned by the post office so I needed the correct mailing address so I could pay him.

    I put my contact info in my welcome email including my phone number. If affiliates want to take time out of their schedule to talk to me they can call me or email me to tell me to call them
    Please never cold call me! (Unless there was a mutual time agreed on via e-mail).

    I like things in writing -- e-mail me
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  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by SarahN01
    Well if I were an affiliate I would appreciate a call if I were being updated on what is working best. I mean who better to tell you how to make more money. Even if an AM is just calling you to try and raise theyre revenue you have to realize that for that to happen your commisions will rise with it!!!
    I mean think about it, its a 2 way street you both make money.
    That's a reason why I don't talk too much to Affiliate Managers. It's a sure way to have all my affiliate marketing little secrets spread to all affiliates. No, thanks. I like to keep what works for me.

  21. #21
    What's the word? Rhia7's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SarahN01
    Well if I were an affiliate I would appreciate a call if I were being updated on what is working best. I mean who better to tell you how to make more money. Even if an AM is just calling you to try and raise theyre revenue you have to realize that for that to happen your commisions will rise with it!!!
    I mean think about it, its a 2 way street you both make money.
    An AM can e-mail me and say "turquoise widgets are HOT NOW -- keep the campaign going" -- I don't need a phone call.

    If the AM wants to give me a raise -- go right ahead and pay it, I don't want the phone call unless I've requested one from the AM (very extremely unlikely).
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  22. #22
    What's the word? Rhia7's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Zeus
    That's a reason why I don't talk too much to Affiliate Managers. It's a sure way to have all my affiliate marketing little secrets spread to all affiliates. No, thanks. I like to keep what works for me.
    Yeah, I see oil ...
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  23. #23
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    Hey Zeus,

    I dont want to steal all your secrets But wouldnt you like to know what is working for other people. I mean imagine if you had a good enough relationship with an AM that you could run deals without having to test everything out there to figure out what works. You could streamline your business and be way more productive. You can always do better wth a partner on the other end than just doing everything on your own

  24. #24
    15 years and counting
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    But wouldnt you like to know what is working for other people.
    Not really. Not without being sure the other affiliates agree to share what's working for them.
    I can share what doesn't work to avoid others to make mistakes. I'm sure I was one of the first to warn affiliates about datafeeds, duplicate contents and SE penalties. It seems obvious now, it was not a few years ago.
    I saw affiliates sharing their success with others, telling everybody how they did it. A few months later their business was gone.
    Anyway, what's working for me is not a recipe for success for others.

    Affiliates and Affiliates Managers DON'T have the same interests. I'm talking from experience. Sure, they can make more money by working together. BUT, an AM dream is to have most of his/her affiliates making money. It seems obvious to share the strategy of the best performers to teach the newbie affiliates. I'm sorry but as a performer, it's my aim to stay at the top without anybody getting their share of my work.
    Look at most merchants stats, the top 5 affiliates make 80% of the commissions. If you spread that same amount of commission to thousand of affiliates, how much are they going to earn each. Nothing. And they are all going to run away and try an other program.

  25. #25
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    "however, it seems that most PREFER receiving a phone call instead of an AIM or email."

    I'm not sure about that. I have hundreds of merchants and at least a monthly email from them is good. Or if there is some important news of some kind, send out an email. As far as the phone, have it available if affiliates want to call and if you want to call affiliates, maybe email them and them first about it and when a good time to call is.

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