This is a post I’ve put off for quite a while.
Partly because I didn’t want to share my
secrets to success…but partly because
it will open the eyes of affiliates to the
knowledge that they SHOULD be treated
A lot of the ‘secrets’ really are just common
sense and overall human decency…
But apparently in our biz that’s not so common.
So if you’re an affiliate, make sure the people you’re
working with are doing these things…and if you’re
a company DO THIS STUFF 🙂
First: Be available to affiliates.
This one is pretty simple, but there’s failure
across the board. Affiliates are real people,
who deserve your respect and attention above
and beyond what anyone would say is ‘normal’.
You might think it’s annoying and that affiliates
don’t want to/need to hear from you between
promo’s…but they do.
Make it a point to update them on what you’re
working on for THEM. Share some insight as to
what you’re seeing. Ask them if you can help THEM
with anything…WOW crazy!?!
What this all leads to is a RELATIONSHIP!!
If affiliates know you’re genuinely interested in
them and their success you will stand out and
above the rest! And when they reach out to you…
you’ve built a relationship that will be profitable
and see them promoting your offers.
Second: Honesty in Business
No company is perfect, let me say that from the
Sometimes a company gets itself into trouble,
sometimes it’s something else’s fault, sometimes
that company does AWESOME…it’s life.
The KEY is being honest about it. Affiliates
are very smart, well connected, and influential
people…don’t lie to them! Once one affiliate
gets a bad feeling, it spreads…and the same is
true with GOOD feelings.
Just last week I talked to someone who felt
they had been wronged by a company. This
week I’ve heard 2 others say similar things
and raise similar concerns! The source of the
concerns were part their own experience (or
a version of it), and the first person. It spreads
quickly so it’s best to deal with it honestly.
If the company in this case would have been
honest I don’t think it would have gotten to
the two others.
Same is true about good news though, so
create more good news by being honest. Even
if the news is bad, affiliates respect that…just don’t
If you’re honest about a problem, often times
THEY CAN HELP!
Don’t afraid to be honest or swallow your
pride for the sake of success.
Third: Rewarding, not Punishing, Success
This one seems easy enough, right?
Yes, it’s about paying them well and
correctly, keeping them loaded with
news and insight on your company,
being truthful, and helpful…but it’s more.
I’ve seen companies have great success,
then get lazy, let their egos and greed get
the best of them…then CRASH!
When I say ‘not punish’ I mean to basically
not suck once you start to rock it.
Keep doing what you did to get that
success. Keep working the long hours.
Keep testing and retesting campaigns
and methods. KEEP STRIVING!
I’ve seen too many companies sit
back and all but call it in. Their affiliate
manager spends more time on facebook
then communicating with affiliates. The
owner put out a product that they KNOW
they wouldn’t sell to their own parents.
If your company does well, keep working
like you’re at the bottom.
Todd Mitchell did over 1.5mm in sales in
the past two launches…and you know who’s
putting in serious hours planning and working
on the next one in September??
EVERYONE!! (myself included)
So reward affiliates by working hard and never
settling with any amount of success.
I hope this was helpful and eye opening, and if YOU
have anything you’d like to add to this list please
All my best,
P.S. If you’re not an affiliate partner of Todd Mitchell
you’re missing out on working with a truly GREAT company.
Learn more and read more from me on the company blog
P.P.S. The last two launches did 1.5mm in sales and 98%
RETENTION RATE! THAT is a mark of greatness my friends.
Something I would add is don’t expect your affiliates to send you all those leads, then right after your launch, start mailing other affiliate offers to all those leads. Of course some publishers are going to think they own those leads, but in the long run they will lose affiliates from this kind of behavior. If you are going to do that you should pay your affiliates sub-affiliate commissions for those extra sales to other programs. (Like that’s going to happen!)
Yeah I think there should be a wait period where the company tries to sell more to them to make you money you know?
Hi Brad, your points are well taken. Making things as plug-and-play easy for busy affiliates as possible is always a big help, because everyone’s very busy. I personally am very selective about whom I recommend since there’s so much negative feedback in the trading community (forums, etc) about many of the products that are launched with typical launch models, and high >10% refund rates.
Also the 80/20 (or 90/10?) rule about just a fraction of affiliates do most of the heavy lifting, can discourage smaller affiliates from promoting, especially for “first cookie” aff programs, since people with big lists may get sales credit from overlapping leads with smaller affiliates. I personally will never promote for anyone who has “tattooed” leads with first-cookie programs, since if it’s my email that got the sale, but that lead was previously cookied to someone else, I would get no credit. I’ve got a sizable list, but like many, I may do split tests or other mailout testing vs blanket mass emails.
Question, Brad- and others, I like the big IM launch model that the internet marketers have used in years past, where affiliates offer high-value bonuses for ordering through their links, which helps with proper affiliate crediting. Personally I also like to do time limited launches the old-school way, with hardcoded individual landing pages, for jv limited launches, to absolutely ensure my jvs/affs get credit for every sale sold. And in the order area, I say “forward your order to contact (email@example.com address) for your bonus”, to double-track and credit affiliates.
Any insights from others, re proper affiliate tracking, I know there’d been a first-cookie vs last cookie discussion here a year or two ago. I like Amazon’s business model, which is ‘last cookie’, plus add an additional layer of transparency to the process, and traceability, by having affiliates compete by offering bonuses that the customer needs to contact them for, by forwarding their order email, like virtually all of the big 7-figure internet marketing launches do. Any thoughts? I’m always looking for insights and ideas… thanks!
Ken – personally, I’m a fan of last cookie for two main reasons –
#1 – Many affiliates offer bonuses – a first cookie model would cause confusion and frustration with those people who purchased from your link (increasing buyers remorse and resulting in a poor buying experience).
#2 – Last cookie encourages affiliates to continue promoting and rewards those affiliates who push harder than others.