I always talk about affiliate marketing as a business that relationships are important. Getting to know your affiliates, speaking to them regularly while taking an interest in their business, results in better performance for everyone. But can you talk too much?
Like most people it can get very busy when you are an affiliate. Some of the biggest publishers will work with 3000 plus advertisers. As you can imagine, that generates a lot of emails, meetings and phone calls as people look at how they can maximise their sales and activity.
Which gets me to my point, when you are busy during the day do you welcome a phone call? Are you someone that likes to chat and welcomes the distraction? Or do you prefer to pre-arrange calls so you can plan your workload? I would say I am a mixture of both, but I prefer to deal with most things over email so that I have a record of what is agreed (my memory gets worse with age!).
For me, calls are great and I think where you are unable to meet face to face they allow you to communicate better and actually get to know a person. But a call for the sake of a call can do the opposite. Some of the areas I would avoid calling for would be:
- To chase up an email- Avoid chasing up an email if you have sent it within the last hour. I think most people will tend to prioritise the work they have on a normal day. If they have not responded straight away it might be that they are in a meeting or alternatively have another deadline to meet. If you are regularly finding delayed responses from the person it might be best to check they are the best person to be contacting.
- To update content on site. I would say that this is always better to do over email. The main reason is that you can send the details of what you need changing. Again, to avoid mistakes having the correct information over email will reduce the chance for any errors. You can always follow up with a call a day later if not updated.
So when would I call? I think for me you should call when you meet one of the following conditions:
- It’s urgent- maybe the affiliate is promoting an expired code or offer
- It’s important- perhaps you or your client are considering removing the affiliate from the programme
- It’s time sensitive- the sale only lasts 24 hours!
- It’s exciting!- perhaps you have the feed the affiliate has been begging you for, you have managed to secure them an amazing exclusive deal or something else that you know they would want to know about
- It’s arranged- finding out when is best for the call so they have time to plan and prepare
So what type of person are you? Do you like to talk on the phone? Or do you prefer email or IM’s so you can respond when you are ready, have a record of what was said and the chance to plan it around your existing workload?