No week passes by without someone reaching out to me via social media about their “great” affiliate program. Somehow Twitter and LinkedIn end up being the top platforms preferred by most of these recruiters. Having received another one of such invites via Twitter, I thought of putting together a blog post dissecting the anatomy of an affiliate recruitment Tweet/post doomed to failure.
But, after giving it some thought, I realized that it makes much more sense flipping this idea around and turning criticisms into attributes of an effective affiliate recruitment outreach,
regardless of the medium used, to be honest.
Unless you’re aiming to make your program a bad name (and become known to the affiliate marketing industry as a social media spammer) there are 5 specific characteristics that need to be true about your affiliate recruitment efforts.
5 Attributes of Effective Affiliate Outreach
Nothing is more useless than an untargeted blanket Tweet. Do your homework to ensure that (a) your “prospect” is indeed an active affiliate publisher, and (b) that there is audience resonance between their fans, friends, and followers and your target audience.
Besides digging into the information about your prospect and their audience, look at their website (or whatever other online activity of theirs you believe they could monetize through your affiliate program) and share with them your idea on why you believe this partnership may be a good fit.
Instead of purely cold calling, design conversations [more here], reacting to what’s important to them, aiming to first help, and only then gently get to your point. Don’t just spam people with your ultimate-and-easy-money-making-machine affiliate program invitation. You’re putting your brand on the frontline here. Don’t damage it.
So you are looking to onboard new affiliates. Excellent. But it’s not only about you now! To build a bridge value their time, attention, and effort; and make a compelling case for a mutually beneficial arrangement. Be ready to reward them for activating with you affiliate program, or even just for signing up. You’ll be amazed what a difference a $10 gift card, a product to try, or a commission increase, can make.
Drop the “marketing talk.” You are now marketing to marketers. Give them concrete data (without doing the math for them, though) keeping it eloquent and straightforward. They will appreciate it.
If you want your affiliate recruitment efforts to succeed, make sure that you are hitting all of the above points in your Tweets, posts, and messages to prospective affiliates.
And remember: you never get a second chance to make that first impression!