15 Affiliate Program Components You May Be Missing

In case you weren’t able to make it to my today’s Affiliate Summit East 2011 “Key Affiliate Program Components You’re Probably Missing” presentation — or if you weren’t taking notes — here’s a synopsis:

  1. Don’t manage affiliates — You’re there to manage the program. With affiliates you want to be a transformational leader.
  2. Go leak-free — Phone numbers, live chats, external links, ads, or anything else for which affiliates won’t be compensated, must go away.
  3. Have dedicated landing pages — When running a promo, land promo-specific traffic on a promo-specific landing page.
  4. Commit to ongoing testing & optimization — Because not only affiliates are supposed to be sending you the right traffic; you, as a merchant, should be improving conversion too.
  5. Ensure you have comprehensive program agreement
  6. Police & enforce compliance — The agreement itself won’t safeguard you. You want to constantly monitor affiliate compliance with it.
  7. Spend time on creating an approval email that stands out
  8. Create sense of urgency — Through all your management (starting from your recruitment initiatives and the above-quoted approval email) create it.
  9. Don’t set hard-to-reach goals — You want to be motivating, not demotivating.
  10. Commission drops are always ugly — Do your math right, at the outset; so that you don’t have to drop commission rate at a later date.
  11. Engage in competitive intelligence — It must be a part of your ongoing work. Monitor your competitors (both their affiliate- and customer-geared initiatives), and learn from them.
  12. Be proactive in your management — Don’t wait for affiliate to come to you, but act in anticipation of future needs, changes, problems.
  13. Maintain a healthy two-way communication channel
  14. Create and develop a dedicated affiliate mini-site
  15. Learn to play without the ball — Take your eyes off the ball/performance, the “magnet of the game”, to take time to learn and grow. This will put you one more step ahead your competition.

To all those who attended my presentation earlier this afternoon in New York City — thank you. I hope you’ve had a blast. I certainly did.

6 thoughts on “15 Affiliate Program Components You May Be Missing”

  1. Pingback: Noutati din piata, 15-21 august | 2Parale Blog - Marketing Afiliat

  2. Sorry I missed the summit, but thanks for this excellent summary post! It helps alot for those of us who are in the process of developing and implementing affiliate programs!

  3. Hi Geno, thanks for the great list! I have to comment on #2, as there’s a good option for the phone number: A trackable number on the landing page enables full attribution of phone calls to the network – not only stopping revenue leakage, but making Pay-Per-Call possible and giving an option to drive phone calls instead for those poorly converting landing pages.

    At Freespee we have also developed a solution together with some of the leading affiliate networks to automatically determine a CPA value for each phone call based on the actual transaction that was completed over the phone.

  4. Pingback: 15 Affiliate Program Components You May Be Missing (Geno Prussakov, AMNavigator) | LinkShare Blog

  5. Pingback: The anatomy of a great affiliate marketing program

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