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  1. #1
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    How many affiliates would switch?
    I've been working on a new affiliate payout structure for a program in the debt help industry (very competitive). An average affiliate in this industry makes around $8-$15/lead.

    How many affiliates would join a debt help affiliate program that starts at around $10/lead but has the potential to earn bonuses based on the quality of leads?

    I'm trying to come up with a structure that is competitive with the current industry but also focuses on quality. What would stop affiliates from joining a program like this? To me it seems like a win-win for affiliates. They get a competitive rate to start but also have incentives to produce quality at the same time.

    Any one have any thoughts or opinions on this? I'm hoping current affiliates in this industry will contribute to this thread.

  2. #2
    AM Navigator Geno Prussakov's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by shirsc2
    How many affiliates would join a debt help affiliate program that starts at around $10/lead but has the potential to earn bonuses based on the quality of leads?
    How would the "quality of leads" be tracked?

    Geno

  3. #3
    CPA Network Rep Joe Lilly's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Geno Prussakov
    How would the "quality of leads" be tracked?

    Geno

    Great question Geno. Many times in deals like this lead quality is tracked via close ratio, but the problem as I understand is that it can take quite a long time for leads to close. I'm not willing to wait for them to close, nor do I believe that a sales guy/girl's inability to close a deal has to have anything to do with my lead quality.
    Joseph Lilly
    PartnerWeekly, LLC 702.407.0707 joe.lilly at partnerweekly.com
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  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by Geno Prussakov
    How would the "quality of leads" be tracked?

    Geno
    Right now, we have an in-house real time tracking system where an affiliate can log in to view the progress of each and every lead. It was built to work directly with our Debt management software.

    Our tracking system reports if a lead is still being worked, if a contract is out, if the contract came back, if the lead was rejected, etc. This is so an affiliate can accurately gauge their lead quality.

    To answer Joe's question. You are correct that it can take a while to close a deal. This is why we are moving towards a more per lead payout where an affiliate will still earn a competitive rate regardless of the closes. The close bonuses is an extra incentive to produce quality leads and earn an affiliate extra money.

    When it comes to the sales department ability to close leads, I agree with you in some ways. When affiliates send us leads that have been targeted specifically for type of service and via SEO/PPC, the leads are great and the sales department can close them much easier. I currently have an affiliate whose leads close at around 15% due to the highly targeted nature. When an affiliate markets us on unrelated sites, email blasts thousands of people who have signed up for similiar offers, these leads tend to be less in quality. The ability of the sales team in some matter is affected by how the lead was generated and qualified.

  5. #5
    Merchant & ABW Ambassador
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    Why not have a base program and then have a private program for better affiliates.
    Have a sign on bonus to help get people to join and promote..

  6. #6
    Affiliate Manager Alan Hamilton's Avatar
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    IMHO the best solution that would also make your per lead offer more unique is an approach that would pay affiliates an established rate regardless of the close ratio.

    For instance, you could set basic criteria that identifies valid leads. Based on the overall closing history for such leads you can then factor in results to establish a no nonsense rate paid per valid lead.

    Next, you could consider offering an add on bonus for leads that close at "X%" or higher. This way - regardless of whether your closing team has an up day or down day, the affiliate is assured a decent base rate. After working with in house sales reps for 25 years I can say without exception that crews have weeks that they are hot and weeks when they are not.

    Turnover of sales reps is a reality of the industry and a reflection of the the "ups and downs" that all phone reps experience. That's why phone rep positions are historically high turnover - and ALL phone operations have this turnover. By not subjecting affiliates to the up and down curves of sales reps you will have a happier overall affiliate team, which in turn results in a more predictable lead flow.

    Good luck! Alan
    Join the Spicy Aprons Affiliate program on ShareASale Visit us on Facebook www.facebook.com/spicyaprons Follow us on Twitter @Spicyaprons

  7. #7
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    Alan,

    That's exactly what I plan on doing. Start all affiliates at lets say $10/lead regardless of their close rate for their first 100 leads. Once they prove they are quality, I bump them up to a higher per lead rate plus they get bonuses based on the closes, giving them more incentive to produce high quality leads.

    There is really no set limit on how high we are willing to pay per lead. If an affiliate's leads prove to be worth it, we will pay good money for them. For example, in our current model of paying mostly per close, I am paying close to $30/lead to one affiliate.

    What do you think?

  8. #8
    ABW Founder Haiko de Poel, Jr.'s Avatar
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    A lot better than your $1 lead program
    Continued Success,

    Haiko
    The secret of success is constancy of purpose ~ Disraeli

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Haiko de Poel, Jr.
    A lot better than your $1 lead program
    Haiko de Poel, Jr.,

    You were right. We found out that our old model did work for some affiliates who knew they had high quality leads and were willing to put faith in us. They are making great money. Unfortunately, with that model, recruitment is alot harder.

    Do you think this model will work better? I would love to hear your opinions.

  10. #10
    ABW Founder Haiko de Poel, Jr.'s Avatar
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    I would do it completely different. I'd start at 20% and work up to 35%, and personally review all applicant sites and watch them for the quality of leads. Your niche is too competitive to keep "dicking around" with affiliate recruiting and honestly, it looks like that's what your doing, yeah you might be "branding" but you most certainly aren't "positively" recruiting with low ball %s and schemes.

    I, in no way, intend to besmirch you nor your co, I am only answering your question without mincing words.
    Continued Success,

    Haiko
    The secret of success is constancy of purpose ~ Disraeli

  11. #11
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    I appreciate your honesty. What do you mean by starting at 25% and working up to 35%. In our industry, there is really no way to pay a percentage of a sale because there are no set prices. Plus it can take weeks to months for a lead to close and affiliates do not want to wait. There are so many variables to account for that it would be impossible to do.

    This is why most programs in our industry pay between $8-$15/lead. We would be starting our affiliates at $10/lead and increasing their per lead rate as they go, while throwing in bonuses for quality.

    I take all opinions and recommendations to heart. The only way to have a successful program is to listen to what the affiliates want.

  12. #12
    ABW Founder Haiko de Poel, Jr.'s Avatar
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    Sorry, $20 and $35 not 20% and 35%, my error.

    I know I can get $20 for a lead right now.
    Continued Success,

    Haiko
    The secret of success is constancy of purpose ~ Disraeli

  13. #13
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    you can get $20/lead for debt settlement? I haven't seen it that high yet. Would you think $15/lead + Bonuses based on quality would be better? This would be policed very agressively however. This way, you can work your way up $35/lead if the leads are valuable to us.
    Last edited by shirsc2; December 28th, 2006 at 11:41 AM.

  14. #14
    ABW Founder Haiko de Poel, Jr.'s Avatar
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    You just don't get it - If you can go up to $35 then why should any serious affiliate, in your niche, think your offer of $10-$15 shows that your serious or even a contender in the vertical?

    Do you think affiliates with pre-existing relationships paying more than $20 would even look at your offer? What would be their impetus? You really need to think of the marketing of your offer/program from the affiliate side/viewpoint.
    Continued Success,

    Haiko
    The secret of success is constancy of purpose ~ Disraeli

  15. #15
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    What I don't get is why would you anyone pay $20-$35 for leads that don't do well for your business? There are alot of opportunities to take advantage of per lead programs especially in our industry. What's going to stop someone from making a run for the money and send us garbage if they can make $20/lead regardless of quality? How would you police a program like this to eliminate affiliates who do this?

    We do not resell these leads, we service them. There must be a way to protect ourselves and at the same time pay affiliates generous commissions.

    From what I know, most debt settlement affiliate programs don't pay $15/lead. I know for a fact that most vendors usually start affiliates at $11/lead. Right from the start, an affiliate is earning more per lead and the affiliate would also have the opportunity to earn more if the leads are good. Why wouldn't an affiliate accept an offer like this?

    Again, I am trying to learn what would work best for affiliates. I am taking all of your opinions and suggestions to heart.

    Thanks,

    Scott

  16. #16
    ABW Founder Haiko de Poel, Jr.'s Avatar
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    We are talking about recruiting right? if your offer is sh!t from the get go you'll never see what kinda of leads anyone is going to send.

    If you offer $20 and watch you'll easily be able to recruit and then separate the wheat from the chaff, understand the mentality now?
    Continued Success,

    Haiko
    The secret of success is constancy of purpose ~ Disraeli

  17. #17
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    Haiko,

    I do understand where you are coming from. Thanks for the advice.

  18. #18
    Moderator MichaelColey's Avatar
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    If you have an affiliate whose leads are closing at 15% and you're paying them $30 per lead, you're paying $200 per closed lead.

    Why not pay $150 to $200 (based on volume or negotiated) per closed lead, and give "advances" that start at $10 per lead and go up to $30 based on the affiliate's historical closing ratio.
    Michael Coley
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  19. #19
    Affiliate Manager Alan Hamilton's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by shirsc2
    From what I know, most debt settlement affiliate programs don't pay $15/lead. I know for a fact that most vendors usually start affiliates at $11/lead.
    Per my reply to your email today, note that the above is covered in the suggestions I offered. The problem above is that you are thinking in terms of "what everyone else" is doing - and yet you say you are trying to come up with a program that would incentivize people to switch.

    There ARE unique ways that you can do your PPL - but you have to think outside the bun.
    Join the Spicy Aprons Affiliate program on ShareASale Visit us on Facebook www.facebook.com/spicyaprons Follow us on Twitter @Spicyaprons

  20. #20
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    If you cant track it you cant manage it!
    Build first of all a nice tracking system that its good for your needs, after that move along

  21. #21
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    Hi All

    Tricky as I dont want this reply to be about promoting our affiliate program but I thought I would try to add some input.

    We currently run an affiliate program for debt managment / IVA leads in the UK. Our program has been running a little under 2 months and with great success thus far.

    It is based on a non-refundable acceptance fee of 10-100 and a case fee of upto 150.

    Two challenges to face were the acceptance rates...
    First : In order to guarantee a high acceptance rate we screen our affiliate signups. We also work closely with each new affiliate with regards to marketing and improving quality of leads.
    Second : We opted to pay a balance on case fee, rather than conversion as this would enable the affiliate to see a case fee balance usually within 2 weeks.

    We have a small number of subscribed affiliates and a team of dedicated account managers. Our affiliate admin has real time statistics and lead updates.
    We found that this was the only way to keep the affiliate properly updated on all leads.
    In comparison with industry standards we have a high acceptance and conversion rate and for this I put largely down to our affiliates and excellent account managers whom spend endless hours helping our affiliates to maximse results.

    I believe the secret to a long term high reward program is good affiliates eager to learn and willing to put that little extra in to reach their goals and of course good software and a good merchant

    If anyone would like any further info please pm me.

    Thanks and hope to post again soon.

    Lee

  22. #22
    CPA Network Rep Joe Lilly's Avatar
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    Do you resell leads that are 5 months old? For instance, a lead that was last worked in late December...would you bring it back up to the top of the pile?
    Joseph Lilly
    PartnerWeekly, LLC 702.407.0707 joe.lilly at partnerweekly.com
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  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by 123debtsolutions
    Thanks and hope to post again soon.
    I am sure you will post many more times, resurrecting old threads and using shills to promote your site for free.

  24. #24
    ABW Ambassador
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    Quote Originally Posted by 123debtsolutions
    Hi All

    Tricky as I dont want this reply to be about promoting our affiliate program but I thought I would try to add some input.
    You may not want to but it sure looks like you are. Here's why:

    I believe the secret to a long term high reward program is good affiliates eager to learn and willing to put that little extra in to reach their goals and of course good software and a good merchant

    If anyone would like any further info please pm me.
    How generous, to offer free consulting and advice to competitors. Just to clarify, is that who you're suggesting should PM you for info?

    Thanks and hope to post again soon.

    Lee
    Looking forward to seeing your properly paid for program announcement. Just click on the link that says "Advertising."

  25. #25
    ABW Ambassador Snib's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by UncleScooter
    I am sure you will post many more times, resurrecting old threads and using shills to promote your site for free.
    Good catch. I just had to find out what his second post was all about.

    - Scott
    Hatred stirs up strife, But love covers all transgressions.

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