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  1. #1
    Member
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    November 8th, 2006
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    Merchant policies of keyword bidding question
    I have seen a few discussions about merchants not allowing their affiliates to bid in PPC on certain terms, usually their trademarked names. For example, if a company is XYZ, then affiliates aren't allowed to bid on XYZ, XYZ.com, etc.

    I guess I just don't understand this, or am missing something here. Would someone mind explaining the harm that can come from this please?

    Here is my thought process, and I may be way off base. Feel free to poke holes in it. Unless I have a very strong brand, like McDonalds, Microsoft, etc. and the resources to fight in court all the time, I don't have a good way to keep my competition from bidding on my business name. Looking at this, I would much rather have my affiliates, who are trying to drive traffic and sales to my business and also helping build my brand, have as many of the ad spots as possible, as opposed to my competition, who aren't going to make me any money and aren't really doing much for my branding.

    I admit that my experience is all from the affiliate side of the business, but I am venturing into the merchant side and hope to understand this before I develop my affiliate terms and conditions.

    Thanks in advance for your thoughts.

  2. #2
    Affiliate Manager MINDsprinter's Avatar
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    August 18th, 2006
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    The main disadvantage I would say is usually the merchant runs their own PPC campaign with their trademarked terms, so any competition by affiliates drives up the cost of their campaign.

    Other reasons are brand control. It may hurt the brand if "any" site out there on the Internet is branding your trademark. Some companies like more control.

    That said, if you search through this forum, you'll see the consensus seems to be to work with your affiliates as a merchant so you can have an effective PPC strategy together. Spread out the cost, get good coverage, and all make money.
    Jason Rosenbaum
    Affiliate Manager
    MINDsprinting

  3. #3
    Member
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    November 8th, 2006
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    MINDsprinter, thank you for the reply.

    I just feel that restricting your affiliates is shortsighted. Yes I run some PPC and compete for natural search engine traffic just the same as an affiliate, but in my affiliate marketing past, the programs that I worked hardest for and provided the most traffic to were the ones that treated me like a partner and let me do just about anything I wanted as long as I was trying to help send them good traffic.

    And I don't worry so much about control. I want the same thing as I wanted as an affiliate. The bottom line to go up.

    I'm with you on your last point. When we all make money, everyone is happy.

    Thanks again.

  4. #4
    Affiliate Manager MINDsprinter's Avatar
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    Exactly. If you co-operate with people, then it isn't competition anymore, and you can all work towars the real goal. Making money right?
    Jason Rosenbaum
    Affiliate Manager
    MINDsprinting

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