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  1. #1
    Affiliate Manager Matt McWilliams's Avatar
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    Health Insurance for Affiliates?
    I just had an idea that I wanted to run by the folks here at ABW...

    Since affiliates are business partners and do W-9s and all that, what would prevent a merchant from providing health insurance coverage either for FREE or for a discounted price to affiliates?

    If we pooled affiliates and had 30 or 40 sign up (or more) for the service, we could get them a great deal.

    Just curious what all of you think?
    Matt McWilliams
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  2. #2
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    If it beats the $300+ quote I get from BCBS, I might be interested. If given the option, I would like the FREE coverage , even if it is basic coverage. That's better than nothing.

  3. #3
    Yup, Sure ... now let me check ... Cagles Mill's Avatar
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    According to news articles I have seen, eBay has been offering health insurance to its biggest sellers for at least a couple of years.
    Rick M.
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  4. #4
    Moderator MichaelColey's Avatar
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    I would love to see something like that. I think insurance companies don't consider an organization like that to be a "group", though.

    If you pursue this, I'm interested.
    Michael Coley
    Amazing-Bargains.com
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  5. #5
    Internet Cowboy
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    I've been through this. Michael is right, the insurance companies pretty much insist on those covered being full-time, in-house employees. If you are able to get around this I am all over it. Health insurance is a real issue.


  6. #6
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    Matt, that's why I think an "Affiliate Marketers Guild" would be a good idea, to qualify for group benefits and possibly to get special discount offers for members because of the aggregate buying power - if there were enough of a membership.

  7. #7
    Affiliate Manager Matt McWilliams's Avatar
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    Just got off the phone with one of my business partners who has 20 years in the business. He says that a ''group'' is pretty much defined as whoever the purchaser (read: merchant) says it is.

    We both agreed it would a minimum of 40 people to sign-up to be worth the hassle and cost.

    We are going to look into it more but he estimates that the average healthy affiliate could save $150 a year...not as much as I hoped, but still not bad.
    Matt McWilliams
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  8. #8
    Affiliate Manager Alan Hamilton's Avatar
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    Actually, group coverage does not require that the covered members be employees necessarily. An example of this, I believe that AARP offers a health care plan to members. Also I am a private pilot, and AOPA, an organization comprised of member pilots extends a group plan for AOPA members.

    You've bitten off a big piece of cake on this one Matt - so it will be interesting to see what if anything you come up with on this. If an association (guild etc) is required, it would not take much to put that one together - but finding the insurer and negotiation of rates etc will be a major time eater. I applaud your idea and hope you come up with something that can benefit our industry.



    Alan
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  9. #9
    Affiliate Manager Matt McWilliams's Avatar
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    A "guild" or "trade association" would be a great idea to pool insurance and what not. I also have experience and connections in the lobbying business. I get the feeling that such a lobby would not be a bad idea. Think about the "sob stories" on TV with stay-at-home moms just trying to make a living being harmed by some new legislation.

    I know this would be a huge undertaking and may not fly at all, but it's a thought.

    As for health insurance for our affiliates...we are doing a survey in early December as it is. We adding a question to determine interest in something like this to the survey.

    Any more thoughts on this idea?
    Matt McWilliams
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  10. #10
    Affiliate Manager Alan Hamilton's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MattMcWilliams
    We adding a question
    I think you meant to say "we BE adding a question" or "we be questioning" or some other rappy derivative eh?
    Join the Spicy Aprons Affiliate program on ShareASale Visit us on Facebook www.facebook.com/spicyaprons Follow us on Twitter @Spicyaprons

  11. #11
    Affiliate Manager Matt McWilliams's Avatar
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    You WOULD catch any typo I make Alan

    So are you volunteering to proofread all of my posts from now on?
    Matt McWilliams
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  12. #12
    Moderator MichaelColey's Avatar
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    Is there any update on this?

    An HSA option would also be nice.

    I hope to change insurance companies sometime in the next few months.
    Michael Coley
    Amazing-Bargains.com
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  13. #13
    Outsourced Program Manager Affiliate Eagle's Avatar
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    Matt,

    We are interested as well. Let us know.

    Thanks for considering us.
    Emilio Yepez
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  14. #14
    Affiliate Manager Matt McWilliams's Avatar
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    All,

    I actually got many more emails than I thought I would on this.

    I am glad you restarted this post Michael.

    If anyone is interested please email me or post here as this is something we are seriously exploring over the next month or so.

    I am HOPING to actually have some data and ideas in time for Affiliate Summit so that I can bring some info. in writing to some of you.

    I cannot promise it, but I sure hope to have it!
    Matt McWilliams
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  15. #15
    Lite On The Do, Heavy On The Nuts Donuts's Avatar
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    Matt, put me on that list of interested affs. I have an hsa but pay way too much for my insurance that it has because i'm buying as an individual for family coverage.

  16. #16
    Affiliate Manager Matt McWilliams's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Donuts
    Matt, put me on that list of interested affs. I have an hsa but pay way too much for my insurance that it has because i'm buying as an individual for family coverage.
    Word.

    I have someone working on some ideas here for this. Too bad we also have to get ready for the main part of the Summit (booth, etc.) or else I could guarantee it'd be done...
    Matt McWilliams
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  17. #17
    ABW Founder Haiko de Poel, Jr.'s Avatar
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    Sign me up.
    Continued Success,

    Haiko
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  18. #18
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    Matt,
    I'm also interested...please put me on your list.

    Meeka
    [FONT=Comic Sans MS]Depend on no one but yourself...[/FONT] :winking:

  19. #19
    Affiliate Manager Matt McWilliams's Avatar
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    Meeka,

    Can you email your contact information (if you don't mind)

    We have enough info to move forward soon (soon in this business means...this year LOL)

    We will be sending out a survey to affiliates who are interested with some questions that will determine if this thing is possible.

    So far things look good though! Thanks for your interest :-)
    Matt McWilliams
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  20. #20
    The slot machine that IS paid! Billy Kay's Avatar
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    As a partner, I hope you'll do your partner a favor an find an application form that does NOT have the following question:

    Have you had a heart attack in the last year?


  21. #21
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    Add me to the list Matt...
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  22. #22
    Affiliate Manager Matt McWilliams's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Billy Kay
    As a partner, I hope you'll do your partner a favor an find an application form that does NOT have the following question:

    Have you had a heart attack in the last year?

    I honestly don't think that exists

    I do know that most companies ask for 3-5 years on heart problems as well.
    Matt McWilliams
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  23. #23
    Moderator MichaelColey's Avatar
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    Any update or progress on this, Matt?
    Michael Coley
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  24. #24
    Affiliate Manager Matt McWilliams's Avatar
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    Hi Michael, no update as of now.

    I am working with a local agent who does a lot of commercial policies to see if the math will work.

    For the average fairly healthy person, it seems like we are going to need around 500 people to participate assuming that an average number of "unhealthy" people do.

    His fear is that not enough people will sign-up to make it worthwhile for the healthy people. For instance, my premium right now is only $47.40 a month. Assuming that our group of 250 people had the same representation as the average medium-sized business (some healthy people, some unhealthy people, older, younger, etc.), my premium would go up to over $90.00 a month.

    He is doing some research in his spare time to find some better deals, but right now, to be perfectly honest, it does not seem that the math works.

    He presented some options, but none of them appear ideal...such as:

    -Excluding unhealthy people or old people, thus meaning everyone has to undergo an exam first...grrr
    -Higher premiums for those people..basically this would be like having an individual policy with a 5-10% discount and more restrictions...sucks

    One thing I will say is that our insurance guys recommend keeping an individual policy anyway. Let's be honest, this particular arrangement will not be the most stable of organizations. If you are healthy now and go on this group policy and 2 years from now get some weird disease and then our group dissolves, you are screwed. You cannot get health insurance for anything. If you have an individual policy, you are set.

    OK, I guess that was an update. we will keep trying to make it work, but that is where we stand.
    Matt McWilliams
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  25. #25
    The slot machine that IS paid! Billy Kay's Avatar
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    For instance, my premium right now is only $47.40 a month.
    What?????????????

    Mine is $567.49 - and is reviewed (meening goes UP) every 6 months. Aargh!

    So if I marry you, as your spouse I'd save over 6 grand a year... hmmmmmm

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